Summers 10D

Gary half turned in his chair, looked up at Arjie, extended his right finger up towards the ceiling. Arjie nodded, his goatee bobbing as if it were hanging on a long wire, and left the room.

“Staff meeting today, in the Wacker room.” Jane nodded at Gary’s statement. He smiled at her uncomfortably. “I’ve got a confession to make, Jane. After I got over the shock from your story — ”

“About not knowing about computers or mobile phones, and wondering where all the transportation technology of the last fifty years had gone?”

Gary blinked. “Yes, that story. Once it became clear that you were sticking with it, that you weren’t on some kind of drugs — ”

She reached out, grabbed his meaty forearm. Gary looked up at her, and saw a face filled with indignation, a face that silently asked if he really meant what he’d just said.

He removed her hand, held it in his firmly. “I had to, Jane. I knew you weren’t the type of person who’d do something like that, but your story was so unusual, I had to know that there wasn’t something — something wrong with you.” He released her hand, which she brought back into her lap.

She cleared her throat. “So, Dr. Patel — ” She let her voice trail off.

“Yes. I knew he works with addicts a lot.”

“Did you tell him you thought I was using?” Her eyes were wide, searing at the edges.

Gary shot back quickly in his chair. “No! Of course not. I told him exactly what I told you — that you just needed to speak with a professional, like him.”

Jane’s eyes continued to burn a moment, as she weighed Gary’s statement. Then she exhaled, shaking her head. “OK. That checks out.”

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