She remembers the first time she had to announce a death.
Not so much because of the family – they turned into a jumble of screams right away, as the world became sirens, insults, security. Their faces were lost soon enough in her escape.
More than them, she remembers herself. She recalls the whole way to her doorstep, from the moonlit dust on the stairway to her heels on the ground. She had drifted home, locked the door, and cried all night.
By the third time it happened, she understood there was no other way. Something had to be kicked out. It would either be her or the cracks in her voice.
So she built herself anew.
Over the years, she lost count of the casualties. They even stopped summoning the relatives at one point. Yet, until they chose to print them on paper to save time, the grim announcements were hers to give. After all, her hands were already dirty enough for everyone else.
She also remembers the way her voice had grown cold and mechanical. She had stopped focusing o