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The rusted beast rose up out of sweaty grass and poison ivy, sun steaming water out of the earth. The safety tour was conducted by a guy who looked like his name should be Joey No Nose. It wasn’t that he had no nose, but it was a pug-like, pushed-in affair, and it gave his voice a nasal quality.

His hands were large and furred in black hair up to the second joint of every finger. In a dark room with an uncertain floor, he lifted up a fallen baby owl, and his hands were a substitute nest before he placed it gently back where it belonged.

“It’s a lie what they say about smelling humans on them,” he said. “Their mothers always come back for them.”

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