The Kindness of Strangers
by Nancy Kress
When morning finally dawns, Rochester isn’t there anymore.
Jenny stands beside Eric, gazing south from the rising ground that yesterday was a fallow field. Maybe the whole city hasn’t vanished. Certainly the tall buildings are gone, Xerox Square and Lincoln Tower and the few others that just last night poked above the horizon, touched by the red fire of the setting September sun. But, unlike Denver or Tokyo or Seattle, Rochester, New York sits – sat – on flat ground and there’s no point from which the whole city could be seen at once. And it was such a small city.
“Maybe they only took downtown,” Jenny says to Eric, “and Penfield is still there or Gates or Brighton…”