The gray skies grow ever darker. Gusts of wind skitter dehydrated leaves across the stained sidewalk, their sharp edges scraping loudly in defiance of their fate. It is their last act of independence before slowly disintegrating into oblivion, never to be remembered.

Debris surrounds the leaves – bits of twigs, crushed acorns, stray pine needles all make an ever-changing obstacle course for the litany of ants cascading out of the crevices in pursuit of their next meal.

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