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"No man is an island, Stella,” Jim Burns had said to her once. Just the sort of well-meaning yet casually sexist thing he would say.

“And is no woman an island either?” she’d replied, coolly.

Men like Jim always seemed to want to plant their flag, to conquer, to stake their claim.

Women were different, in her experience. More like waves rolling against the shore and out again with the tide. Leaving their mark but never outstaying their welcome.

Stella smiled at Reed asleep beside her.

Stella rather liked being an island. Having people to visit, but never to stay.