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Art by David Revoy/ Blender Foundation

Finale in Blue

By Alexandra Grunberg

Bernadette ignored the young woman’s muffled screams as she added another coat of paint to the canvas. The piece glistened in the light of her tiny studio, the window shut against the pressing darkness of the night outside. The woman’s body was tightly contained between the wooden back and the canvas surface stretched taut across the frame, though her minimal bucking caused the brush to jerk off course, just as Bernadette had planned.

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Art by David Revoy/ Blender Foundation

Any Ending

By Alexandra Grunberg

They told her she was sick, and Meg did not argue.

You never argued when they came to take you away.

Her parents stood in the living room, holding hands, their eyes gazing at some point far above Meg’s head. They could have been avoiding eye contact to prevent a breakdown in front of the Officials, which would imply an objection to their diagnosis. Or they could have been avoiding the gaze of the person they had committed themselves, perhaps to gain approval from local Officials by contributing to the new Healthy Community Hostels. Either way, her parents did not even say goodbye to her as she was led from the house she had lived in her entire life, guided gently but firmly by two Officials in long white coats.

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