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Peripheral Visions: Nine Eleven

Kilian Melloy READ TIME: 21 MIN.

Peripheral Visions: They coalesce in the soft blur of darkest shadows and take shape in the corner of your eye. But you won't see them coming... until it's too late.

Nine Eleven

"That's nine," the woman said, "and another nine in this group... oh, wait, plus two more..."

Verge barely heard her. He realized his mind was wandering, but he knew the paperwork well enough that he didn't need to devote his full attention to it. Even so, it suddenly occurred to him that he wasn't sure just where they were in the process.

"And now I sign a check," the woman said, "and that's all there is to it?"

Now Verge knew what was going on. "You also have to sign," he responded, leaning forward and reaching across his desk, "twice on this page – see the sticky notes? With the arrows? Right, there and there. And again on the next page." He waited while she inscribed her signature with a flourish, the pen scratching fulsomely against the paper. "And now, just a few more..." He pointed out all the places where sticky notes lurked in the document's many pages. Three in Section One. Two in Section Two. Two in Section Three. And finally, on page eleven, a further pair of signature lines. She dutifully inscribed her name everywhere he prompted her to.

At one point she suddenly looked up, a smile on her face.

Verge looked back questioningly, smiling a friendly and automatic smile.

"I'm sorry if this is too personal, but what's that scent?" she asked. "Is that your aftershave?"

"Cologne," he said.

"It's really nice," she said. "What is it? Is it expensive?"

"It's..." Verge had to pause, clear his throat. "Excuse me. It's called 'Forge.' You can get it at Schwanebeck's. It's about forty dollars... well, maybe fifty now. It's been a while since I bought a new bottle."

"I might get some for my boyfriend," she murmured, bending back to her signatures. "His birthday isn't until a couple of months – November 9, isn't that funny?" she said, looking up from the pages with a grin. "11/9? Since, I mean..." She gestured at the document, at the dates notated next to each signature: 9/11. 9/11. 9/11.

"Yes," Verge said thinly, with a feeble smile.

"Anyway, it's a while yet, but I feel like I need to get going and figure out what to get him." Bent over the pages once more, she finished the last of the signatures.

Verge had to sign, also, though less frequently. Finally, all Ps dotted and Qs crossed, the deal was done. The woman made out a check. Verge accepted it, offered her a receipt, and then shook her hand and wished her a nice day. He sat alone in his office for a while after that, thinking he should take one more close look at the pages but knowing if there were an error somewhere in the jumble of legalese it was too late to fix it now.

Verge stood up, turned to the window, looked out over Manhattan's midtown, and sighed. He just couldn't keep his thoughts on topic. He couldn't even keep them coherent. He'd felt like this from the moment he'd woken up, and he knew why.

Six years. The first time the date fell on a Tuesday since the day itself. In a way, it didn't seem as if any time had passed at all. It seemed that so much of life... of his inner life, of himself... was still frozen in place, frozen with horror.

And with guilt.

Gus had gotten up first that day, as he always did. He made coffee, read the paper, did his pushups and his twenty-minute yoga routine, all while Verge slept. Then, at 7:00 sharp, he'd come in to rouse Verge, a cup of coffee in his hand. As usual, Verge had tried to drag Gus back into bed for a few minutes. Sometimes the ploy worked; it had not that morning. "I can't," Gus told Verge, pushing the coffee cup into his hands. "I have to get going. Early video conference. Sorry."

Verge moaned blearily.

"It's a pain in the ass," Gus agreed. He was wearing an extra-starchy shirt, and the creases in his trousers were sharp. He must have found time in his morning routine to do a quick round of ironing.

Verge hove himself out of bed, stumbled towards the shower, and leaned miserably into the hot spray.

"Gotta go," Gus shouted from the living room. "See you tonight! Bye sweetie!"

Verge uttered another moan – halfhearted, inaudible even in the bathroom, certainly not perceptible to Gus as he darted off to jump into his day. In the back of his mind Verge thought about cooking something extra nice for dinner to make up for the missed kiss at the door.

But there was no dinner that night. By the time Verge got home, having walked all those blocks from the Sargent building, he was sweaty, disheveled, filthy with grime, and starving – but it didn't occur to him to eat anything. The apartment was empty. There was no message from Gus on the answerphone. Verge wasn't even sure the land line was working; he had tried many times to call Gus on his cell, but the lines were overwhelmed. The few times he got through to Gus' number he left messages, but he had yet to hear back. Verge kept his cell phone right at hand as the evening wore on, hoping Gus would call but knowing he might not be able to get through.

It was an evening of strange silence and relentless anxiety with moments of sheer terror as the day's events came rushing back at unpredictable moments.

Verge went over the facts as best he knew them, ceaselessly, repeatedly, trying to find reason for hope.

Gus' office was on the 102nd floor of the North tower... had been, that was, had been on the 102nd floor of the North tower.

Had been. Now the office was gone, The North tower was gone. Both Twin Towers were gone. Gus...

Gus had almost certainly been in his office.

Gus was gone.

Verge slumped in front of the television, transfixed, the day's horrors on a video loop that didn't help his frame of mind. He had muted the sound, unable to stand the unending chatter. The images flickered with unending repetition: The plane soared on a straight, swift path, too low, unbelievable... the building burst with an orange fireball and a shower of debris... the towers burned, plumes of black smoke rising, drifting... the towers crumpled, telescoping into themselves and vanishing in gigantic clouds of smoke and dust. Then the sequence of images started over again.

Verge slept on the couch that night, the television still flickering, the trauma of the day burned into the large screen and into his mind. His dreams were the same as the repeating images: Sudden fire, smoke, catastrophic disappearance. He woke again and again in the night, gasping, fumbling for the phone, trying to scream, trying to sob, trying to force his voice to work. Nothing happened. His throat was constricted, his terror and grief not yet crystallized.

It took Verge weeks to find his way back to their bed. He didn't want to sleep there alone, he didn't want to disturb the last place Gus and he had been together. The bed was like a sanctuary – a place present but distant, a place that waited with him for Gus to get home, to finally get home.

The bed remained unmade while days passed, and life, by fits and starts – blasphemously, heinously – began to resume. Finally, in a fit of angry determination, Verge stripped the sheets off the mattress, stuffed them into the washing machine, and poured in detergent and bleach. But when he took the sheets out of the dryer, their stark whiteness – their blankness – depressed him. He thought he'd feel refreshed, ready for a new beginning. Instead, he found himself staring into an external expression of his own inner emptiness.

Weeks passed, then months. Right-wing religious leaders cynically blamed gay men and feminists for the attacks, rather than the terrorists who had perpetrated them. The government set about establishing a "victims compensation fund." The same right-wing religious lunatics lobbied against any money for surviving domestic partners.

Verge focused, day in and day out, on staying in the moment, not allowing stray details that reminded him of that day to pull him back into the horror of that day, those days, those nights of tribulation.

The New York Times was full of the names, photos, and stories of the thousands of people missing and presumed dead. No one reached out to Verge to hear Gus' story; when his picture had name appeared in the paper along with two paragraphs, it came as a shock. Verge realized it must have been Gus' sister, Sarah, who had talked to the Times. Sarah had not reached out to Verge. She and Gus had barely even spoken for years, ever since Gus had come out, well before Gus and Verge got together. Verge had met Sarah only once, at the funeral for Gus' mother, seven years earlier.

Another month went by. Verge slept in the bed now... but barely, being haunted by nightmares and the emptiness next to him where Gus had once been.

Verge pulled the sheets off the bed and washed them again. Then, a month later, yet again.

Verge kept waiting for that fresh start, for a miraculous a key to turn in his heart. He kept trying to launch himself out of his sense of suspended animation, and he kept running into walls. A year later, two years... the Fourth of July party almost three years after the fact, when he'd found himself smiling and flirting with a lively, sweet guy named Jared. The question came up – not in words, but it was in the air: Was Verge going to take Jared home? Still smiling, now with pain around the edges, Verge shook his head no and apologized. Jared looked hurt, but he was good about it. Verge hoped their paths might cross again, but it hadn't happened so far.

Six years gone. Tuesday again... Tuesday, the eleventh of September.

Verge felt morbid. He made an effort to draw himself out of his musings. It was after 11 a.m., but not quite time to head out to lunch. Verge decided to take a stroll to the commissary anyway, where he bought coffee. He could have poured himself a cup for free in the break room, he thought, and that made him want to justify the expense by buying something more, so he chose a pastry to go with his drink. Then, thinking he might as well just pick up a sandwich and eat lunch at his desk, he added a sub roll stuffed with ham and cheese to his total.

"That comes to ten dollars and eighty-nine cents," the cashier said.

New York prices, Verge complained to himself, forking over a twenty dollar note.

She handed him his change. "Thanks," she said. "You have a nice day."

The amount of his change glowed in red digits on her register display: Nine dollars, eleven cents. A wave of dizziness, of weary grief, of scalding rage – they all passed over him in quick succession. Verge thanked the cashier vaguely and headed out the door, half-blind, his head pounding.

Back in his office, Verge sniffed carefully. He'd caught the same whiff of cologne that the client had remarked on. He wasn't sure where it came from or what to think about the coincidence. He'd let the client think he was wearing cologne, for simplicity's sake, but the truth was he never wore cologne himself.

Gus had been the one to use that fragrance. He loved it, and Verge loved it on him. There was an unopened bottle in the mirrored medicine cabinet over the second sink. "His and his sinks," he and Gus had called them, and Verge never used Gus' sink, just as he stuck to his own side of the bed. He'd cleaned out Gus' cabinet, tossing the ibuprofen and the hair product, the exfoliant, the moisturizer, and the razor; he hesitated over Gus' tweezers, then kept them for himself.

All that remained in Gus' medicine cabinet was the cologne and a box of Band-Aids. It was a sad and accidental commentary. Verge had kept the cologne hidden for days, just waiting for Gus' birthday on September 18th – which also fell on a Tuesday that year. The very next Tuesday, in fact, by which time Verge had given up hope. It took another three months for a definitive identification of remains... the remains that they'd finally scared up, which wasn't much.

Verge had heard about an arm being found on a rooftop blocks away from Ground Zero. For weeks he was tormented by nightmares that the arm belonged to Gus, that it was inching its way home, dragging itself along with scrabbling fingers. In one dream Gus himself stood by the bedroom closet, peering in anxiously. When Verge asked whether he was looking for a shirt, Gus turned to him, saying, "No, actually..." and his truncated arm came into view. "Have you seen it?" Gus was saying, as a scream built up in Verge's chest and lodged there, painfully, with every other scream and bellow of anguish that had fought to escape him but never had. "I don't know how I manage to lose track of these things," Gus was saying. "It's like losing days, like how the week starts off with Monday but then it's Thursday and Friday and you haven't gotten anything done. But Tuesdays," Gus said with a knowing look, with a half-smile that was worse than the missing arm, "Tuesdays are even worse."

That was the moment the scream finally tore from Verge, like a scarlet bubble bursting. Desperation and horror seemed to spray all over the room, a black and sinister ectoplasm. Sitting up in bed, his eyes wet, Verge thought he saw that ectoplasm for a moment, grotesque splotches on the bed and walls, real and yet phantasmagorical.

There was no scent of Gus in the office now, but Verge clung to the revelation that it wasn't just him: The client had smelled Gus' cologne, too. It was certainly a coincidence... but then again, what if Gus really was here? What if his shade was lingering, the scent of his cologne a sign of some sort... that death was not the end, that Gus had not forgotten him, that a connection still remained?

Why now, though? Why after six years? Why not sooner, so much sooner... why not in those terrible days and nights right afterwards? Why not on the night itself, that first unendurable night with its flickering images and inchoate, overpowering sensations of rage, helplessness, and sick fear?

Verge sat at his desk, pushed away the sandwich in its brown paper bag, let the coffee go cold.

The phone on his desk rang. Verge glanced at the readout and saw the call was coming from extension 911.

Who was at extension 911?

Wait, there was no extension 911. The extensions started at 100 and ran through 608. 911 was the number you called in case of fire, or heart attack, or any other emergency. Was this emergency services calling him, for some reason? Did they know about Gus, about all the signs Verge had encountered this morning? How, as he was walking up 11th Avenue, a tall guy with dreadlocks bounced by, listening to an iPod and wearing a Knicks shirt emblazoned with the number 9? Or the taxi that had screeched to a halt with a honking horn, almost knocking over some clueless guy who'd wandered into the street without looking – the taxi with a license plate that started with the number 09 followed by a short string of letters and then ended with two ones? How Verge had stopped just outside a park... just stopped, not meaning to, as if a cold invisible hand had blocked him. He'd looked down at that moment for some reason, to see doodles and squiggles and swirls done in different colors of chalk and there, poised just in front of him, was a seahorse-looking spiral. Then he saw it: It was the number 9, done in orange, and his own feet, shod in black leather, formed a solemn 11.

The first thing Verge needed to look at when he got into the office that morning was a minor rewrite of a major contract – a single sentence in paragraph 11 of section 9. And this was after he'd taken the elevator up to the office, and the elevator had stopped at the ninth floor; when the doors opened a man was standing there, a man who looked for a moment like Gus: The same prematurely graying hair, cut close, looking like bristly iron; the same black horn-rimmed glasses. It wasn't Gus, of course, and Verge looked at the floor to disguise his consternation; when the elevator stopped a moment later Verge looked up to see the doors opening on floor 11. He thought this must be the other man's stop, but then Verge realized the other man had not gotten into the elevator with him. He was alone. And no one was waiting for the elevator on floor 11. Verge pressed the button to his destination, the 24th floor, with jabs that alternated between anger and a sense that he was starting to freak out. "I know it's 9/11. Jesus Christ," he muttered to the universe, as the doors finally started to close.

He'd gotten more email than usual overnight, a consequence of the upcoming end of the fiscal quarter and a dreary, irritating thread of messages among several of his coworkers, who kept CCing everybody on their increasingly irrelevant emails. He'd had to scroll back and back through previous pages of email looking for something from the previous afternoon, something he'd left unopened, intending to get to it first thing today. The snafu on the contract had taken him less than 30 minutes to fix, but in that interim even more email piled up. Verge had to step back through nine pages of accumulated emails to find the one he wanted... in slot number 11. He stared at the email, not clicking it open, willing it to drop to slot 12 with the arrival of a new message, but the deluge had stopped and the email stayed where it was. Item number 11. Item number 11. Item number 11. Verge couldn't stand it. He clicked the email open, read its contents, opened the attachments he needed, and printed them up.

And then he'd had that client, the woman who had noticed the scent of the cologne – Gus' cologne. The scent Verge had noticed several times that morning, but he had chalked it up to his strange state of mind. And then the change at the commissary. And now this. The ringing phone. Extension 911.

Verge stared at the phone, wondering when it would stop ringing. Was it important? If he ignored the call, would they call back?

Was it Gus? Was it really Gus?

The phone fell silent. Verge reached out then, suddenly fearful, but stopped short of plucking up the receiver. He stared at the phone and brought his arm back slowly to his side.

Then he felt something. A breeze against his face. A heat at his back. He looked up and felt his body arch in instant terror.

The wall was gone. The city stretched below – far, far below, much more so than it should have from his 24th floor office. There must have been an explosion; the great opening was ragged, the floor shattered and crumbled at its edges. Debris littered the room, Verge saw, as he desperately looked around. Abruptly, he realized that a fierce blaze was at his back – a searing, intense heat that drove at him, pushed him from the chair and brought him to his feet. Verge suddenly became aware of the smoke the surged around him in torrents and twisting grey wreaths, smoke filled with sparks, with a burning stench –

Verge stumbled toward the hole in the side of the building, seeking escape from the heat. Then he saw...


He was near the ragged puncture in the building's flank, saying away from the flames and the heat, holding to the jagged remnant of the wall, edging as close as he dared to the drop. He looked back for a moment, and Verge saw him clearly: He wasn't imagining it. It really was Gus.

Gus gave him a desperate look. He seemed about to say something, but then he turned away and threw himself into the air, away from the infernal heat and choking miasma of smoke and steam and sparks –

Verge jolted and the world reshuffled, snapped into focus. He was in his own office, which was intact and cool. He sat at his desk. He was alone in the room. He touched his face; it felt hot. He ran hands over his arms, over the great blotting swaths of sweat that spread from under his arms and across his chest. His heart hammered; his head swam. Had he fallen asleep and had a momentary dream? He didn't feel that he was waking up, though – he felt that he'd simply transitioned into the here and now from some other place and time.

Then memory washed over him, as potent and immediate as the hallucination he'd just experienced.

That last morning hadn't played out the way he'd recollected earlier. Verge realized he'd subconsciously fooled himself, setting aside events as they had happened for a happier, more generic version. Gus hadn't let him sleep late. Verge remembered that now, and tugged the thread of memory to bring the rest back into focus. Gus had come in at 6 a.m. sharp, not 7, because Verge had asked for his help in getting motivated to start going to spin class.

Gus also didn't bring him a mug of coffee. Not that morning. Gus was acting distant, preoccupied. Detached, Verge thought. And he wouldn't crawl back under the covers because... Verge assumed... he was going to keep his promise and go to spin class with him.

But he didn't. Gus shrugged off Verge's mumbled inquiry with a fussy lack of patience that rubbed Verge the wrong way.

"A client asked to meet for an early breakfast in order to look over some sketches for a buildout," he'd said.

"But you were going to get breakfast with me," Verge complained.

"Sorry, sweetie..."

"Yeah, you're not sorry. You're not even thinking about being sorry."

Gus didn't say anything. He stood in front of the mirror silently, staring at himself with fixed determination, tying his tie with short, snappy movements.

"You do this to me all the time," Verge accused him, and he hated the petulant sound of his recriminations. That made him even madder – at Gus, of course.

Gus just shook his head, then asked – with no real warmth – "I do what to you?"

"Make promises. Make plans. Then forget all about them. At the last minute it's, 'Sorry, I have something to do for work,' or, 'I don't feel like it.' "

Gus looked himself over. Verge saw how sharp he looked, how creased and polished. Ironing had definitely figured into his early morning. Trim and well-groomed, smelling of his favorite cologne – slightly citrus, slightly chlorophyll, slightly musky – Gus cut an appealing figure. Verge wanted him even more for himself, smarted more sharply that work... some nameless client... was taking him away.

Gus crossed over to their bed and seemed to soften as he looked Verge in the eyes.

"I could just have a glass of juice and still meet you for breakfast," he said.

Verge flopped back on the bed. "No, you need a good breakfast," he said.

"Then I could save the juice and meet you for a smoothie after your class," Gus said.

"You'll just cancel again," Verge said. "You won't want to be late to work."

"Nobody will care if I'm a little late after a breakfast meeting," Gus said. "Come on. It'll be fun." He pulled on his most charming smile, and Verge could see him doing it – pulling it on like a mask to appease him.

Verge jumped out of bed with an irritated energy he was ashamed to remember. "We'll just do it another day," he said.

Gus had retreated to his cool watchfulness. "Are you sure?" he asked.

"Yeah. Yeah, I've got stuff to do this morning, too, before work," Verge said. "Don't worry about it. I'm gonna take a shower."

And that was how they left it. No last call from the front door to which Verge, in the shower with a toothbrush in his mouth, had given a muffled response. That pissy, pathetic tiff was their goodbye.

And Gus had tried to call a couple hours later, Verge remembered, but he hadn't left a message. Or, if he did, none was saved to Verge's voice mail. Verge actually saw it at the time -– saw that Gus was trying to call him, but he was still feeling mad and pissy, and he didn't pick up. He figured that he would let Gus worry that maybe he'd met some cute guy at the spin class. He'd let Gus stew a while. He deserved it,

He'd make it up to Gus later.

But that was the thing. Not long afterward, a commotion shuddered through the office and everyone started clustering around the TV in the conference room.

Staring at the television, Verge saw dark spots before his eyes, and among them were the shadows other choices he could have made...

Sitting with Gus at the hard plastic table of Toby's, Gus with his juice and Verge with his bowl of oatmeal, the two of them watching the same surreal images on an ancient color TV sitting high up on a shelf in the corner... Verge reaching out and grabbing Gus' hand, saying words to him... Grateful words that they were both here, both safe...

But they weren't. They never would be.

Verge pressed his hands to his eyes.

Suddenly, his phone started ringing again. Verge jumped. His heart nearly burst. He slumped back in his chair and took a slow, deep breath. He hoped his boss wasn't calling, looking for a meeting. He was hardly presentable.

For some reason, the thought made him start laughing. His laughter crescendoed quickly, then turned into an ugly sob. Verge buried his face in his hands, struggled to calm himself.

The phone was still ringing. Finally, Verge looked at the incoming number.


What if he answered?

What if he didn't? Would he be treated to a reprise of the vision he'd seen a few minutes ago – that hellish glimpse of Gus, of his terror and agony, his last moments before he'd taken what last scrap of control had been left him by murderous religious fanatics?

Whatever awaited Verge on that call, it couldn't be worse than that nightmare vision. He couldn't see that again. He couldn't survive it.

Verge reached out and picked up the receiver. Barely breathing, ears sharply attuned, he brought up the receiver.

What was that sound? Breathing? No; it was more like the fluid warbling he'd heard when he was a kid and used to play with his father's shortwave radio. Quasars, the old man had said; cosmic rays; black holes. Sounds from mysterious reaches of the universe, like wind blowing through high-reaching branches at midnight. Like water gurgling through channels of ice. Like the voices of the dead...

"Hello?" Verge ventured.

More faint, wispy warbling. A distant galaxy churning the night with spiral arms; a dark planet wheeling through the cosmos with a deep, sonorous rumble; all of it so far away.

"Hello? – This is Virgil Montoya. Who's calling?"

Still nothing, nothing but the distant sound of endless night swarmed with popping photons, cosmic rays, the muffled bursts of distant stars flaring into final eruptions... heavy, cetacean sounds, faint and eerie, guttural, primordial...


If there was someone listening on the other end, that someone was in no hurry to announce himself. Verge shut his eyes, swallowed hard, and thought of the look on Gus' face. The look he'd had in that hallucination, or... or that vision, whatever it was. Message. Plea. Accusation.

Verge drew a long breath, summoned his courage, and came out with it.

"I miss you," he whispered. "I'm sorry. I wish I had... had..."

But what did he wish? That the morning six years ago had played out differently? That Gus had forgotten his plans, rolled back into bed with him and rumpled his freshly-ironed clothes? Called out from work, stayed safe under the covers while those sick killers brought their vicious brand of faith down on the heads of "infidels" in flaming shards?

The whisper on the phone sounded like a keening, like a wail of loss. That scent was back, now – Gus' cologne. Verge trembled, a feeling like ice shuddering through him. Was it fear? Or something else? Hope? Shock?

Verge gripped the receiver harder. His hand trembled. Sweat gathered on his forehead, trickled down his neck, felt like a caress from icy fingers. His mind searched for the words he wanted.

"I wish I'd told you more often... stopped to look at you more than I did," Verge said. "I regret every day that I didn't. When you teased me, I wish I'd laughed instead of getting mad. When you laughed at me for being mad, I wish I had the sense enough to... to..."

Verge ran out of breath, took in another.

"And I wish I had taken you home to Puerto Rico to meet my mother. She wanted to meet you. She would have adored you. But going back there, to the old neighborhood... taking my boyfriend to that place... Do you know her now? You know, sometimes I feel her looking over me. But not you. I never felt you before today. Have you been there all along?"

Verge listened closely, eyes shut tight; poured himself through the receiver, into whatever universe lay on the other side. The warbling rolled and rippled, an alien language of stardust, ghosts, angels.

"If you're still here because I've been holding on to you, then I'm sorry for that, too," Verge whispered. Something terrible was crawling from his chest, scrambling up his throat: All the curses and condemnations he'd wanted to howl, all the fury and hatred.

And grief.

And love.

"I miss you. Every day. So much. But I'd like to let you go," Verge managed, forcing the words out through his knotted throat. "I'd like to let you do... whatever you need to do next."

There was sweat rolling into his eyes. There were tears rolling down his face. His heart shuddered with pain, and then surrendered. Verge wondered if he was dying. It felt as though he were being lifted, reoriented, prodded, aligned... and then released.

The warbling expanded, lengthened, became something like a sigh. Then the line went silent.

Verge set the receiver into its cradle. The phone seemed dead – no red lights shining next to line numbers. Even the display was now blank. He looked at his watch to check the time and saw that his watch had stopped hours ago; the hands stood frozen at eighteen minutes after nine.

"Happy birthday, sweetheart," Verge whispered. "A week early."

The scent of cologne still lingered in his office. Verge realized it was growing stronger. Then it blossomed into the aroma of yellow roses – their shared favorite. They had schemed for years that on the day they were allowed to marry, if that day ever came, they'd have bouquets and centerpieces of yellow roses, yellow roses everywhere, pinned to lapels, brightening all the tables at the reception.

A few minutes later the aroma was gone, and Verge felt as though his ears had cleared. The headache had subsided; he needed a fresh shirt, but otherwise he suddenly felt renewed. The world seemed crisp and ready.

Verge took another breath, missing the scent of roses.

Originally published on Feb. 12, 2018.

by Kilian Melloy , EDGE Staff Reporter

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.

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