She knows there’s something demented about this expectation of hers – he won’t send a message to her, or if he does, this is not how it will arrive – but she can’t free herself of it. It’s hope that spins these fantasies, it’s longing that raises these mirages – hope against hope, and longing in a vacuum. Perhaps her mind is slipping, perhaps she’s going off the tracks, perhaps she is coming unhinged. Unhinged, like a broken door, like a rammed gate, like a rusting strongbox. When you’re unhinged, things make their way out of you that should be kept inside, and other things get in that ought to be shut out. The locks lose their powers. The guards go to sleep. The passwords fail.

– Margaret Atwood, The Blind Assassin (2000)


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