Between Orbits: Two Manipulators, Pulled Out of Abuse and Back

Summer I
She radiated Californian magnetism, tan and blonde and vibrant during a rainy Pittsburgh summer. Kelly, like me, was younger than most of the other people at the Chamber of Commerce meeting. We, the unlucky assembled of the Chamber of Commerce, sat in hard-backed chairs with suspicious stains on the patterned seat cushions. It was the ungodly hour of 7 am, and I was clinging to my styrofoam cup of serviceable coffee. Half a donut sat on my paper plate despite what I knew about the shop where it came from. The teenager who worked there most mornings would go straight from putting cash from the person in front of you into the register to palming every donut into your box with a bare, grubby hand.

At this shoddy table sat insuranc...

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Nico Hall

Nico Hall is Autostraddle's A+ and Fundraising Director, and has been fundraising and working in the arts and nonprofit sector for over a decade. They write nonfiction and personal essays and are currently at work on a queer fiction novel. They live in Pittsburgh with their partner, Sadie. They are also a gardener, project queer, witchy/wizardly human and are currently mourning their lovely senior rescue dog. Nico is also haunted. You can find them on Twitter and Instagram as @nknhall.

Nico has written 128 articles for us.