The man held out a gourd that was like mine and yet not; instead of being woody, thick, and heavy, it was light and colored translucent blue.

"Fill 'er up." he said, laying out his chits on the table with his sun-browned hand. "I've got the money." I loosened the tap on the great rain-barrel and watched the faintly mud-colored water rush into the flask.

"Where'd you get that?" I asked, raising my eyebrows. Was he a government agent? I didn't have no permit.

"Found it in an old ruin. Was called Esco, or somethin' like that. Back before the Heat Crisis." He took a slurp out of the shimmering bottle. "These things, if you don't leave 'em in the sun, they will last forever. Me, I've got a whole collection. Resell 'em for chits." I pocketed the coins on the desk. The chits all had different numbers on them, but that didn't matter any more. A chit was a chit. Sometimes you'd get a chit with strange characters instead of words, and sometimes they'd have a man instead of the old woman's face that was usually on them. These ones were regular; a coppery-colored one and some silver-kind.

"Thank you for your business." I said and moved on to the next customer, a young girl, black-haired and clasping an unevenly molded ceramic bowl. "Clean water is three chits."

By dino, March 8, 2015.

On the picnic table was a water bottle. Saskia didn't doubt that the thick and scratched plastic was once red, but now the light that shone through was undeniably pink. It's bright blue lid was a mismatch too, likely from the same brand but a different colour and one less used or newer. There was water in it and she was thirsty alright, but sunshine on a plastic bottle can cause bacterial growth and she really wasn't that desperate, not yet. She stowed it in her bag and got back on her bike, even if she didn't need the water the bottle might come in handy...