In this city of endless night blurred 'round the edges by the haze of progress, you are waiting. Wandering within the Valley of Ashes, wandering from one lifeless marionette face to another, you are the expectant. Beneath streetlights and rumbles of trains, mournful cries of sirens and the stink of death you suck in your breath and anticipate the ecstasy of rebirth. Tonight will be the night. And if not, tomorrow.

Disloyalty to Dharma brought you here. It is a mistake you are repeating.

From squinting eyes to tired, cracked hands and oily glasses past from one patron to the next. Forced laughter and slurred stabs at meaning possess you like a spirit of Autumn, dulling the razor edged pain for a few hours of solace. And always something more hanging just out of sight, teasing you with flashes of may-have-been 'til it drives you into the streets again. These feet shuffling you over the crumpled, fading testaments to yesterday's triumphs and downfalls should be carrying you into mountains, over streams and through fields under a sky bright with a billion pin pricks of brilliance. Overhead now is only sickly, seething, dimmed and darkened greyorange.

Choose a god, make your offerings, perform the rites and plead unto the depths of the night.

Among thousands there must be one, some one to share this fragile growth from among the cracks in the concrete. You cannot be the only person who's gazed out over the endless columns disgorging their complaints to heaven and seen something more, felt the presence trembling through all these hard jagged things, fighting its way to the surface. With a desparate clinging grip you've retained that which defines you, but it's worthless without another. This one last thing that can't be broken down into symbols, equations, diagrams, or patterns. Powerful and incomprehensible.

Know your place.

With this hope you rouse yourself from bed at twilight, with this hope you put yourself to rest at dawn.

And you wait.

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