Finn bent over and clutched her knees, fighting to catch her breath. On her shoulder, Sergeant Pepper clucked and whirred. The noise that came out of him sounded suspiciously like laughter. She shot him a look.

“If I wasn’t…out of breath…I’d wring…your…neck!” she panted.

He shuffled back and forth on her shoulder and cooed, “Pretty bird!”

Finn scowled at him. He hopped from her shoulder and alighted onto the rail. The sun, which had been so reticent since the day Finn woke to find she was entirely alone in the city (world?), came out now, bathing the snide little bird in light and showcasing the brilliant red and blue sheen of his feathers. The long river of empty gray concrete that had once been a freeway overpass stretched off into the distance, disappearing into the horizon. The beauty of it wasn’t lost on her, but Finn sighed for the lonely look of it.

Still, crying hadn’t done any good. She shrugged, knowing well the loneliness would surge if she let it. Instead, gripping the handles of the bicycle she’d just pulled up the overpass with her, she climbed on the b
bicycle.

She pushed off with her foot.

She didn’t have to pedal at all. The bicycle rolled, slowly at first then swiftly picked up speed until she was nearly flying. Panic, exhilaration, vitality all poured into her, churning, and finally spilled out of her in a tremendous shout of glee.