The girls begin to fall away like petals, like brittle shingles from the roof in wind as if to prove that they will only settle for less. Before a mirror they stand, their skin translucent in the neon lights, their pale blue veins like roads across their tiny thighs. Too dark, they frown, too much. And turning their frail heads upon their laddered spines, with narrowed eyes, they calculate their daily intake, each bite another bead along a string of sins against herself. Today a pear, tonight she’ll go without to counter the extravagance of fruit. They’re crumbling beneath the weight: repentance and desire, Hail Marys in each empty plate.