Mara quieted her travel alarm clock and tossed it into her small duffle bag below her on the floor. She slipped out from under the covers and dressed as quietly as she could. Her second alarm on her old diving watch went off, signaling she had four minutes left. Quickly, but carefully, she folded the blankets she had borrowed and put it back in the linen closet. 

She was a pro at this by now — couch hopping. If it were a sport, she was sure to win a medal. Mara had several years of practice minimizing her presence, erasing any evidence she had been through, condensing her life into a small duffle bag and a sturdy vintage medicine bag.

With a minute and a half to spare, Mara grabbed her bags and stepped outside. Pressing the alarm button behind her. She rolled her shoulders, cracking her neck in the process and heaved a deep sigh. As she took a step toward the street ahead, she heard the alarm reactivate on the Michelson’s winter townhome behind her. 

Who needs B&B’s when Mara was a professional at B&E’s?