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Rock Street, San Francisco

It was soon to be sunrise on a cool winters morning in nineteen-fifty-six, the lamppost below the rustic brick structure flickered gently, only emitting a low, cold yellow light intermittently. A woman, no older than thirty, stood atop the Portman Street building of red brick, or of brick that would have been red if the rain and haze had permitted it; but as matters stood, it was a building of unforgiving, unsympathetic black.
Unrelenting, dingy rain stung Anastasia’s exposed face, a ceaseless sheet of frost against her as she stood upon the ledge, peering down into the overwhelming gloom nearly forty feet below. The great architecture of the buildings made shapes out of all too pliant shadows. They loomed over the street below in a dark and obscuring manner, blocking the moon’s minute luminescence from reaching the pavement. The radiance of the lamppost dulled further as it struggled to emit a spark.
The woman’s hands were held out to her sides, splayed as if she were an offering, a sacrifice to a dream of something better; something more. Her feet covered by obsidian Galoshes scuffled against the uneven, rough red brick below her, and she swayed precariously closer to the edge, the serene smile painted on her face reluctant to fade.

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