It was her third straight day in the tattoo parlor chair. She’d commissioned the artist with a back-long mural of fighting dragons, a fifty color masterwork, and thus far, to her unfailing surprise, she’d felt not a needle. Half the world away, her twin sister writhed in bed, stricken with bruises and bleeding, incapacitated for most of the week, praying hard. Had the sisters ever met, the equation would be clear: Numbness and pain must never equally divide.



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