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We careened south toward Okinawa’s capital city, Naha, after eleven on a Saturday night. On the left, the U.S. military base fences flashed, silver and barbed wire. On the right were convenience stores and used American furniture shops with names like Graceland and U.S.A. Collectibles.

Frank Rodriguez cannot coach his children's soccer teams. He can't get a job at a major corporation. He can't leave the state without registering with local law enforcement. A married father of four girls, he is a convicted sex offender. Neighbors can find his name and address on a public registry online.

Detective Michele Deery works in a cubicle in the basement of the Delaware County courthouse, in Media, Pennsylvania. The only window is high on the wall, over a tall filing cabinet, and opens into a well, below ground level.

The offices of Jimmyjane are above a boarded-up dive bar in San Francisco's Mission district. There used to be a sign on a now-unmarked side door, until employees grew weary of men showing up in a panic on Valentine's Day thinking they could buy last-minute gifts there.

At the Diamond Cabaret, the Platinum Club, the Jewel Box and the Crystal Palace; at Roxy's, Miss Kitty's, Dollie's Playhouse and PT's; at the Chameleon Club, the Pink Slip, the S&L Rub and at C-Mowe's, at all the strip clubs and massage parlors that do business in the communities that ring East St. Louis like a noose, people gather by the thousands in the wee hours of a weekend morning.

When the zipper became popular in the 1930s, my grandmother once told me, all the boys in town complained: Zippers made too much noise in the movie theater.

No more sleepovers. No more babysitting, or car rides home. No more being alone with children or “lingering hugs given to students (especially using your hands to stroke or fondle)

Trent Arsenault was in the Borg Cube when he heard the knock. “Trent,” his father called through the door. The Borg, tucked into a canyon southeast of San Francisco, consists of a modest two-­bedroom ranch house plus a few tents Trent has erected in the backyard.

Stella Walsh walked out of Uncle Bill’s Discount Department Store with a bag full of ribbons. It was the evening of Dec. 4, 1980. The sun was long gone and a chill was filling the air. Two weeks earlier, she had given the key to the city of Cleveland to the Polish men’s national basketball team. In a couple days, she planned to give these ribbons to her native country’s national women’s team before an exhibition game at Kent State University.

Zina and Veronica are on a train traveling east, though the direction doesn’t matter, because north or south or west would take them just as surely away from home and toward somewhere else, which is the only place they want to go. They think they are dreaming.

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