Smells of food were plentiful. The band of survivors' senses were honed by the harsh conditions of their new lives, even water seemed to have a smell now. Smells of sweet goods came drifting out of the bags of many passers-by, one was carrying a paper container of popcorn that wafted with a warm, intoxicating scent. Here and there vendors sold snacks of various quality. In a far corner seemed to be a sort of cafeteria, a long line forming along the counter.

The group was not drawing as much attention as one would have expected from their ragged conditions. Daphne's curls were flattened by the damp of the ravine, Will's bathrobe looked like it had been dragged through mud. Luan looked the worst, Farah's blood still crusting on his face and caking on his clothing. A girl with pointy ears and carrying a staff with plastic vines wrapped around actually gave him an appraising look and said: "That's good fake blood! Where'd you get it?"

Akane was lagging behind, but what else could she do but follow the only people she had met so far? Thus she was the only one who noticed the entrance to the cave disappearing behind them. Wherever they were heading, going back the way they came was no longer an option.

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