TR: Hello, Huck.
Huck: You look like someone.
TR: I’m sorry? Huck? Hello?
H: Ask your question.
TR: OK. You seem to be having some changes in your interest or ability to do the job you’ve been doing. Where do you see yourself in five years?
H: Have you ever felt a human spleen?
H: It kind of feels like a big tea bag that’s been soaked in syrup. I’ve felt a total of 63 spleens in my life. Sixty-three syrupy tea bags in the palm of my hand. Sixty-three. Sixty-three. Sixty-three.
TR: Huck? Huck, are you OK?
H: Sixty-three. Sixty-three. Sixty-three. Sixty-three. Sixty-three.
[Quinn walks quickly into the room and, putting her hand on Huck’s arm, gets him on his feet and leads him out of the room. She returns and sits opposite me and speaks before I can open my mouth.]
Quinn Perkins: Hi! I’m Quinn, and I’d be happy to answer the question you just asked Huck, about where he’ll be in five years. Well, obviously I’m not a fortune-teller so I can’t tell you exactly where he will be, but I can tell you where he won’t be, and that’s right here, in this office. He’s weak, Huck is. The years have worn on him; his feelings are outgrowing the tools in his torture kit, and that’s not good for business.
I love Huck like a brother, and my job is to protect him, and if that means adopting his sociopathic bloodlust, then I don’t really have a choice, do I? I mean, I don’t want to strap grown men down and take away all their power and control, rendering them slaves to the will of my drills and knives and syringes full of things you only read about in your chemistry book, but someone has to do it. And if Huck can’t do it, then what choice do I have? It’s unpleasant, really it is. Just dreadful.
[She stands and walks to the door, pausing to turn, look back and tell me with a wink that her goal for this year is “107 syrupy tea bags.” Last but not least to enter to room and take a seat is Abby Whelan.]
TR: Hi, Abby! My question for you: Are you and David Rosen ever going to get back together?
Abby Whelan: No! Well, yeah, probably.
So there you have it. Olivia’s crazy, Huck’s crazy, Quinn is definitely crazy, Harrison is crazy for fashion and Abby is apparently the sanest of them all.
Tracy Clayton is a writer, humorist and blogger from Louisville, Ky.