Re: Zephyr


Herr D

Chapter 3: Headline Deadline

The lunch room was empty when Jennifer walked in. She had barely taken her first bite though, when: @#&%*! Anchors away, PLEASE anchors away! What are they on about NOW?
“We do need pages by two,” said David Crowe, eyes all over Tia. OMG, Mr. and Mrs. Eggshell–pretty smooth outside, painfully fragile, and full of salmonella. “But I’m thinking we need to stress the followup and give it more in-depth later. That at least should ease the rush now.” He put Cafe R.D.E. to-go boxes in the fridge, pulled out his pen, and leaned on the table to write ‘nine a.m.’ in the three timecards he’d walked in with. Not even trying to hide it from me now, huh? “Do you think you can rough that out with your lunches?”
Tia and Shelley, holding their own to-go boxes, looked at each other. Tia, arching an eyebrow, reached into her bag, pulled out her dessert box, and quietly stuck it into Shelley’s bag without making a sound. David’s eyes were elsewhere on Tia. Shelley nodded.
“Yes, David. Pages by two. The only thing I’m not sure about is what we should call it.”
As Nathan, Stuart, Po, Nguyen, and Mike Claren walked into view, David blurted out “What’s wrong with ‘the Chinatown Ghost?'”
“Hah!” Oops. Everyone turned to look at Jennifer.
David clenched his teeth. “What’s wrong with that?”
Jennifer quietly took a rapid, deep breath. “For starters, that poll Stuart finished up says locals don’t react well to calling those three square blocks Chinatown.” She waved at him.
Stuart paled a bit. “Well . . . um . . . ” Oh, poor guy, did some of us look at you TOO? “Yes. That’s what we found.”
“Really?” David’s voice sounded flat. “Where is my copy?”
“I put it in your box last night,” said Stuart quietly. Uh oh, you weren’t sure they CLAIMED to be in this morning did you?
David’s eyes narrowed slightly. “I must have missed it. What’s wrong with ‘Ghost?'” He looked back at Jennifer.
“She doesn’t act like a ghost.”
“What?” David guffawed. Wow. If he just ridicules me in front of everyone, maybe he won’t push me. Just don’t ask–
“How DOES she act then?” He opened his eyes, craned his neck. Honesty always, from those wanting truth.
“Not like a ghost.”
He laughed again. “How does a ghost act?”
“She doesn’t haunt just one place. She doesn’t always look the same. She doesn’t always do the same things . . . ” You stupid *^$! “As long as you’re going to call her something, you should pick something that fits.

[Continued next block]