Anna can barely contain her disgust as she waits for her Seamless delivery. The creepy guy’s gaze lingers even after he walks back into his smelly slaughterhouse.
She tries not to imagine the daily pain and torment of the creatures behind the doors. She fantasizes that the man wakes up in a cage himself, stacked on top of other men with no respect for animal life.
This thought warms her so much that she barely feels the winter air.
A small man with a scarf wrapped around his face rattles down the sidewalk on a motorized bike, plastic bags full of take-out boxes hanging from his handlebars. “Miss Christianson?” He nods, handing her the bag, already looking back at his handlebars.
“Thanks.” Anna grabs the bag and takes the elevator back up to the rooftop. Sloppy Friday started early.
Most of the building residents are men and women who work at ad agencies, banks, and tech companies in the city. They wear colors as bright and luscious as candy.
Two men in flannel shirts take shots of whiskey, looking out across warehouses and housing projects, Manhattan gleaming like a pulsing amber bee hive far away. Someone starts to hoot above a Kanye song.
“This DJ will be amazing tonight!” Helga says in her square Polish accent, taking one of the veggie burgers from the take-out bag.
She claps Anna on the shoulder and Anna’s heart beats a little faster. Helga swigs a thin beer in a green bottle, wipes her mouth with the back of her arm, and burps. They lean against the edge of the roof, looking down on Ramirez Live Poultry.
“I could hear those poor things from up here,” Helga says quietly. “I can’t believe a place of such cruelty can still exist.”
“He opened the door today. They’re all packed in floor-to-ceiling cages. No food, no water.” She looks eagerly at Helga and sees the cute pout, full lips glossy and pink from the cold as Helga scrutinizes the inscrutable nature of the world.
“Ronnie cooked burgers downstairs, who wants one?” shouts one of the men in flannel.
Later, they walk into a one-bedroom apartment with an Apple TV and smoke marijuana and take tiny white pills to make them dance like souls seeking bodies.
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