Fucker, she cusses, under her wispy breath. The smoke from her cigarette forms a halo above her head, and as she floats down the street, it leaves a trail resembling a long streak of cotton candy. Not pink, obviously. Can you get white cotton candy? She doesn’t think so, but you never know. Twitching her nose before taking another drag on her stick, the houses on either side of the street fade into obscurity. They’re soon replaced by two rows of factories. Some functional, others dilapidated. There’s even an old church with a cross reaching for the sky on top of a rickety roof, although the once iconic stained-glass windows have long since been smashed to pieces. Smashed by rocks thrown by kids with no idea or understanding of the meaning of God. This is the New World, she thinks, a new dark age where not even superstition has a chance to reign, but it will once again be followed by another age of enlightenment, for the wheel never stops spinning, and the turning world will bring with it a sense of change that’s as familiar as the changing seasons. Not that she’s defending God or religion or any of that, stuff. Despite her mother’s best efforts, she’s never been a believer, and never will be, and yet she’s smart enough to recognise that a world without faith is a world skirting on the brink of a terrible tragedy. As if on cue, beneath her feet she feels and hears the crushing of glass, and if she squints her eyes, in the near distance, the holy cross emerges from the misty limbo; cold, beaten, stark and silent, and yet still defiant despite years of neglect.