The gunshot is a flat, dead sound in the cold air, swallowed by the snow and ice. Behind him, the mountains loom silent.

He holsters the gun, pulls his scarf up so that it covers his nose, and makes his way across the lake. The ice here is thick; he can feel its weight, a vastness beneath.

Fulton is crumpled in the middle of the lake, his blood steaming in the white snow. Rasp pulls off his mitten and checks for a pulse. Then he stands, flips the hood of his parka up, and starts his way back to town.


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