Overwhelmed by his more vocal neighbors however he

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Overwhelmed by his more vocal neighbors, however, he does not offer his opinion. Over the course of the next several days, Delaney and Kyra both go about their normal lives: Delaney continues working on his nature column, “Pilgrim at Topanga Creek,” and Kyra continues to devote countless hours to her work as a realtor, having recently become obsessed with one of her properties, the beautiful Da Ros home. While at the supermarket one day, Delaney has an encounter with Jack Jardine, who tries to convince him to support the gate. Delaney initially challenges Jack, calling him out for his racist views, but later, in the parking lot, seems to rethink his views when he spots Cándido, whom he instinctively thinks of as a “dark alien little man.” The next day, still unsettled by his second encounter with Cándido, Delaney goes for a hike in Topanga Canyon and comes upon a man wearing a backwards baseball cap (José Navidad). Delaney is furious that this man and his friend are camping in the canyon, and heads back to his car with the intention of calling the police. However, he finds that his car has been stolen. Back at the car dealership, he can think only of Cándido’s face as he tries to imagine the person who stole his car. Meanwhile, Cándido and América have been facing their own challenges in the canyon. Cándido managed to return to his campsite after the car accident and his pregnant wife, América, has been nursing him back to health. Much to Cándido’s chagrin, she has also been trying to find work at the labor exchange, though she has been unsuccessful. In the meantime, the Rincóns’ camp has been vandalized by Jack Jardine’s son, Jack Jr.; still injured, Cándido was able only to look on. Eventually, América finds employment working for Jim Shirley—though not before she has a disturbing interaction with José Navidad at the labor exchange, where he flirts with her aggressively and threatens that she won’t be a
married woman for long. Returning from her first day of work in Shirley’s car, América is mortified when Shirley places his hand in her lap. She refuses to tell Cándido about the incident, instead focusing on celebrating her earnings. The following morning, América and Cándido both visit the labor exchange; América is again hired by Shirley, while Cándido finds work with Al Lopez, whose team is responsible for replacing Delaney and Kyra’s private fence (which they want heightened in order to prevent another coyote attack). That evening, América waits hours for Cándido to return to their meeting spot at the supermarket; when he does not, she heads into the canyon on her own. There, she is attacked by José Navidad and his unnamed friend. The two men brutally rape her on the canyon trail. Part Two of the novel opens on Delaney, who has become increasingly resentful and angry following the theft of his car. After purchasing a new vehicle the same day his car is stolen from the canyon road, Delaney has lunch with Kyra, who leaves early to check on the Da Ros home. While making her rounds of

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