The silver spoon in the coffee cup on Jimmy’s kitchen table was a family heirloom from the 1904 St. Louis Exposition. The spoon was trying to tell him something, not in a trippy way, the last of the acid pissed out when he woke alone. He lay long in the bed (what bed? his own bed in his own lone home) fearing traces, but the eucalyptus tree outside his bedroom window showed no signs of being a copy with no original. So far so good.

The spoon was another matter. He scrambled eggs, kept an eye on the spoon.

“Talk to me,” he said. “Not out loud. Talk the way spoons normally talk to people.”

The spoon spoke. It became the spoon he didn’t want to see. Non-heirloom and ordinary, blackened. It lay on the table next to Shauna’s bed in the varying light of the candles on a dish with a syringe and needle and a vial made from an old-fashioned chemistry test tube stopped with a cork.

In his extremity and trust he had given it no meaning. Now he knew.

Her works. The fucking works.

Travel kit for the end of the world.