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Untitled, or Calling Birds

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Enid has thought of calling from every city. Sometimes she imagines Rebecca waiting for her, answering in mid-ring, but most of the time she knows that the ring will echo lonely in Rebecca's room.

The phone in the hostel says "No Long Distance", but Enid picks up the receiver anyway and listens to the dial tone until a boy with yellow dreadlocks asks her if she's nearly finished. Two months later she has a temporary office job, and she looks at the phone every day for a week but never dials.

The day after Rebecca's birthday, Enid sees a pay phone on a street corner with a poster advertising a long-passed concert pasted on the booth. She drops the change in the slot and dials quickly, before she can change her mind. She thinks of times that they called each other in the same moment, getting busy signal after busy signal.

No one answers.