23: Seal the Deal

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"Where the hell is Gordon?" Logan asked, then put his binoculars down. "It's time for his evening nap."

"Who's Gordon?" I asked.

"That stupid fat seal that bullied all the rest of them. Where is he?"

"Do you think he was among the casualties of today's bloodbath?"

"I sure hope so. That little fucker deserved it."

I smiled. "The seals are saved."

"Would it kill you to be a little sensitive right now? I don't think I'll ever feel happiness again. Unless, whoa. I just got a crazy idea."


"Maybe I'd feel a little better if you made out with me."

I smiled. "Not now. We have to count the, uh, remaining seals still, and then I have to take at least a twenty-minute power nap or drink more coffee. My eyes are burning."

"The only positive thing out of this is that my job just got a hell of a lot easier. There's practically nothing to count on my half. I barely even have to pay attention to this, which is mind-numbing, and I hate it."

So it wasn't a positive, then. At least he tried.

"You don't have to pretend you hate everything and everyone. It's just me now," I said.

"It's not pretending, Rea." He shook his head. "Half of my seal population was massacred today, so I think I have the right to be a little pissed off."

"Okay, fine. But you act like you're still in your emo phase. Most people grow out of it by now. How old are you?"

"Twenty-two, and it's not a phase. It's who I am." He laughed. "I'm not even that emo. I'm just prone to being pissy. Do they even have people like that in West Virginia?"

"Well, it's pretty funny. There were three in my high school class, but they all overdosed on heroin in the school parking lot, so I guess there aren't any anymore." I frowned. "Actually, that wasn't very funny."

Logan laughed. "It's not funny at all."

I rested my hand on the bench and watched fifteen or twenty seals flop down on the unoccupied rock.

"Maybe this reset isn't the worst thing ever for the seals. At least they get their rock back. It may not be their home, but they deserve a nice place to rest." I paused for a moment. "I don't think you ever told me where you're from."

"Right here, born and raised on this fucking rock. That's what it feels like, at least. Nah, I'm just from a town in Maine. There's no way you've ever heard of it."

"Try me."

"You ever heard of Paris?"

"I've never heard that name before in my entire life. Never," I said.

"Okay, now imagine the Eiffel Tower in the middle of a bunch of farms. You still with me?"


"Now take out the Eiffel Tower. That's South Paris, Maine."

I hesitated. "Just farms?"

"The entirety of Maine isn't the coast, unfortunately."

"Well, farms can be exciting. Now I feel bad for assuming that you didn't understand where I come from."

"The population's about five thousand people."

"Oh," I said. "Never mind, then. That's a large small town."

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