The roads beneath her sink into the earth, and the buildings she doesn’t recognise tumble as if made of stale bread turned soggy by the rain. Life is down there, continuing its descent into a slow malaise, but the reason for her flying so high isn’t to witness this. No. Not this time. Not tonight. Unlike those times when she’d been shown echoes of the future and echoes of the past, the routines of other people’s lives were of no interest to her. Tonight, the magic lie not in people but faith. Although only small, Gretchen had a pretty good idea of the importance of faith. Faith wasn’t like an idea; it was more to do with a feeling. It was spiritual? Her mother often spoke of the importance of spirituality, and although she usually didn’t like much of what her mother had to say, her words on this matter resonated deeply. For Gretchen, she understood spirituality to be like a language without words. It didn’t need words because although words were powerful and beautiful things, they were finite things, whereas the spirit knew no end. It was everything—like the sky and stars and the big black beyond that went on forever. Flying like a sparrow into the night, she thinks about her spirit and the ways of its desires. To her, they are as foreign as the promise of some distant shore, but she knows that she must seek them and cherish them, for if she doesn’t, she will end up a husk. Another word of her mother’s. Those that didn’t value themselves were all husks, like dead trees or burnt-out cars. Gretchen also thought of empty trashcans, writhing with the putrid stink of nothingness. Not wishing to be like any of these things, she eyes the light that flickers in the distance over the tops of the trees and pretends she’s Superman—surging forward with all her might.