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They sit in dazed silence, backs against the wall.

“That never happened,” says Alex.

“I’ve got bite marks say it did, Bolly.”

“No,” she says. ”I mean, that never happened. I cannot get attached to this world. I cannot get attached to you. You are fictional, and I have a real daughter who really needs me. I don’t want you. I don’t care about you. This is never, ever going to happen again, and it didn’t happen now. Do you understand me?”

He glances sideways at her. His voice is level, but his jaw is too tight. ”You make it hard not to.”

“Good.” She stands up, tugging at her clothes, trying to regain some sense of dignity. ”Where are my knickers?”

“They can’t be in my pocket,” says Gene, “because this never happened.”

He walks past her, out of the interrogation room, and slams the door again behind him.