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a guest Apr 24th, 2019 72 Never
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  1. Prologue
  2.  
  3. I didn't know him.
  4. I think that's what stuck out to me the most, more than the mane of dark hair that fell around his shoulders, more than the careworn jacket of black denim or its array of patches or the chains that criss-crossed its lapel. These things certainly stood out to most people who passed him, surely, so prominent against the muted background of the church pew. But the fact that I had no name for this person, this stranger, stuck out so much to me; in the tiny town of Lewitt, New Jersey, everyone knew everyone.
  5. No one, not among my family or among the congregation, gave him a second glance. He was a stain on the wall. He caused no trouble thusfar, and perhaps they thought if they went on ignoring him, he would just decide we weren't entertaining him, we with our perfect, devout ways, and he would leave on his own. So far, this hadn't happened. I had noticed him now for three weeks, in the very back pew, and he seemed to have no intention of breaking his new habit.
  6. I got a good look at him every week as I passed, as he always seemed to be the first to arrive and the last to leave. And though I'm sure I expected him to sneer, to gawk at the pristine churchgoers and mock them with his eyes, I never saw such an expression cross his face. The only time I met his eyes, the deep, mossy hazel of his eyes, I felt a jolt within my belly that did not belong there.
  7. He did not belong in our world.
  8. And I did not belong in his.
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