Katherine Krueger pushes the hair away from her face. It is hot. North Dakota, August, 1920 hot. Nothing stirs the air. Dirt from the road rides on any errant breeze kicked up by horse-drawn carriage or Model T. She is wearing a Gibson Girl getup, issued by the hotel but taken care of by her: starched white blouse, long black gabardine skirt, high-button shoes. She’s got a smock over her shirt, but knows she’ll have to have a “sponge bath” and put on a new top before the dinner rush, if she’s to look fresh for Walter.

Breakfast is over in the coffee shop and she is now going about the business of cleaning the rooms. This room in particular she doesn’t mind cleaning. It belongs to ...

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