The elevator shafts were the new garbage chutes. Not one of the twenty elevators in the apartment building now functioned, and the shafts were piled deep with kitchen refuse and dead dogs.
They were now moving into a realm of no social organization at all. The clans had broken down into small groups of killers, solitary hunters who built man-traps in empty apartments or preyed on the unwary in deserted elevator lobbies.
Mrs Wilder reappeared with her tray, stepping over the garbage-sacks that lined the hallway — for all their descent into barbarism, the residents of the high-rise remained faithful to their origins and continued to generate a vast amount of refuse.
Royal never asked about the source of the meat — dog, presumably. The women had the supply situation well in hand.
Without asking him, Mrs Wilder had laundered his white jacket, washing out the bloodstains which Royal at one time had worn so proudly and which had given him, not merely his sense of authority, but his whole unstated role within the high- rise. Had she done this deliberately, knowing that it would emasculate him?
Several of the younger male residents — a gallery owner from the 39th floor, and a successful hairdresser from the 38th — usually lounged about in the corridor among the garbage-sacks, leaning on their spears and keeping an eye on the staircase barricades.
Half-packed suitcases lay on top of each other, as if the women had left at a moment’s notice, or at some prearranged signal. Most of their clothes had been left behind, and he recognized the trouser-suit which Mrs Wilder had worn to serve his dinner.
Oh, I just can never get over the amount of detail and effort that goes into each chapter. I love this so, so much. And again, you have my endless gratitude and appreciation for what you’re doing with this. Simply amazing.