Published in Halfway Down the Stairs


Out of the second floor window, Alex climbs barefoot down the drainpipe in a dark alleyway with the ends of her black dress flapping upward from the wind, revealing her soft bare skin underneath. She’s a beautiful and fragile creature, her feet delicately wrapped on both sides of the pipe as she steps, one foot at a time, down the brick wall in a smooth rhythm. There’s a noticeable calm in her shoulders and she moves in such perfect ease, as if this were the most natural way to leave someone’s house. Alex is unlike most girls at their small conservative college, she has always been possessed with defiance. She’d be just as confident if the alley was lined with a crowd of people bearing witness to her indecency.

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