Laurie quite liked getting haircuts; there was a real feeling of progress with them. She liked getting new clothes as well; all together they made her feel like a new person. She didn’t think Derek liked either.
Derek was hunched up in his seat of the 2CV; he had his arms crossed and he was glowering. He had been like that while the twins had been changing their appearances as well; Laurie had chatted happily with the two twins about their latest fashions, or what their father thought about their careers and dozens of other silly things while Derek had stared at the wall as though he expected it to catch on fire.
“I think you look good with brown skin” she said, trying to cheer him up.
Derek snorted. “Where did Emma find a fishing rod anyway?” he asked
Laurie smiled; Derek being so silent had started to worry her. “I don’t know” she said, “The same place she got the scalpel I suppose”
Derek made a sound like a laundry bag being dropped to the floor and rubbed his arm. “How do you think Mckingle got that thing in his arm in the first place?”
Laurie had been a little disturbed by that, and she tightened her grip on the steering wheel. “I suppose he must have gotten another surgeon to do it. It doesn’t matter anyway, we’re here”
They were deep in the financial district, and the skyscrapers suddenly had a gap in them.
Laurie didn’t like the gap; it was like waking up in the morning to find some of your teeth missing. She took a deep breath and slowed down to pull in front of the wrecked area.
There were men on site. They were wearing workman’s clothes, but they didn’t look like workmen.
Laurie forced herself to stay calm. She breathed out through clenched teeth and finished pulling in. By the time the car stopped her face was completely blank. “Daniel” she said, “Put that fishing rod away, I feel like a cup of coffee.”
“Wha-” Derek began
Laurie kept her face blank and made a gesture under the level of the car windows.
Derek saw the gesture and froze, then a pleasant smile crossed his face; looking so convincing that a stranger would have thought it was real. “I’ll meet you there” he said.