The meds keep Cam’s anxiety at bay, but it never entirely disappears. It perches inside his skull and watches him, shifting on its haunches, ready to pounce.

But this new job is helping. He works by himself, and he doesn’t have to think much. They call it Large Animal Habitat Maintenance—he cleans the elephant cages.

Cam likes the hot animal smell of the straw and the steaming elephant droppings. It creeps into his throat, but it keeps the little imp in his brain still. And sometimes Millicent reaches through her nighttime enclosure and touches his neck with her trunk.

[For more 100-word stories, buy Stolen Postcards, available here.]

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