The dark water slapped at the shore.  Claire tried to find comfort in the rhythm, but still she felt discordant and unsettled.  The moonless night, suffocating and oppressive, added to her anxiety.   She knew that she could no longer find comfort at the lake.  No longer would the water wash away her worries and her sins.  This dock, where she had happily sunned herself like a sea lion for most of her life, now felt dirty and humiliating.  How had she let it come to this?  She was glad for the darkness, as it hid her tears and her shame.

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