I push the wad of tissue up my nose and say, ‘I said pineapple.’ Laura looks at me and shrugs, putting on a coat of indifference. I watch a blood drop drying on the sheet, its vibrancy dyeing a stiff brown stain. My tongue feels dry and swollen, the wrong kind of meat in my head. I point at the water bottle and Laura hands it to me. She tells me the music was too loud, what’s the point of using safe words in unsafe conditions. It’s a coded message. I can hear the house moving through the walls.

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