Running with the Rats

It must have been a little after six in the morning. Still dark outside, the windows along my street were beginning to show hints of light behind closed curtains. I was coming back home from the gym, enjoying the quiet that still lingers at that time of day—when a rat suddenly flung himself out of a bush and took up running right alongside me. 

I wasn’t scared or disgusted; simply surprised. The fur ball scampering beside me was only the third creature of his kind I’d seen in the city—or anywhere, for that matter—after almost five years of…

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