The Necessary Grace to Fall by Gina Ochsner

"I have no words left." Lada licked his ear instead, moved her fingers over the features of his face, tracing lines in the dirt on his cheeks, along his brow. Over these last years, what with all the fall-out from cracked and failing reactors, and now these bombs, she'd noticed everyone turning to ash, their features sanded over in dust, their faces empty. These days anyone could have the face of an angel or a devil, for they were very hard to tell apart with all this soot. In fact, it was not uncommon at all to see people stop under lampposts, grab each other by the shoulders, and peer intently into each others' faces, looking for the features that would remind them of the man.