My job was not a bad job, as my parents reminded me. It was quite a good job, actually, for someone who was not in college (could not be in college), and through one connection or another I had gotten it without having to go through the usual battery of tests: peeing in a cup, and then the cheek-scrape, and the secondary extraction of genetic material. No, I had gotten it roundabout, under the table, and I was the Underground Girl, all around. I got up before dawn, with a sliver of moon in the midnight-blue sky, and only as I was reaching the gates of the University was the sky lightening enough to show color: brass-yellow, metallic and colorless below the horizon, and green-blue and then electric blue and in the vault of the sky, ultramarine, midnight-blue at the zenith and utmost darkness behind me as I turned to the west. Land of the dead, I thought with a shiver.
It doesn’t do to think of the dead; they are my companions at work.