He is smoking a cigarette.
Still damp from a shower and dressed in nothing but a sea-green bath towel: he has arranged himself on the covered radiator beneath the living room window. He sits here, from time to time: smoking, reading, watching the flow of lackluster drama stretched along the nearest segment of Wrigley Street. He sits here, from time to time, waiting for Nathaniel to get home from late, late nights at the studio. There is little to see now: only shadows and the motion of a breeze through maple leaves, sycamore leaves, and the sick, orange glare of electrocuted sodium vapor from the streetlamp just outside. He has opened the window-screen. A gnat has entered the darkened apartment and rests on the street-lit pallor of his left big toe. It is the faintest of tickles: an idle, unobtrusive presence.
Bats twitter over rooftops across the street, their voices all-but-lost in the eurythmic drone of the city. He listens to them—from time