The man shuffled the papers. His eyes were focused upon the desk in the manner of a Renaissance statue. Drew tried to meet the gaze with the same calm, but he couldn’t hold his heart down. Without a clock in the small office, he felt as though a ticking time bomb might appear just for a laugh. He clicked his tongue a few times; he felt about ready to burst.
It was a very clean desk. A powered-off computer sat on the left side, and in the middle was Drew’s story.
“Well,” Mr. Graham said. He folded the manuscript in his hands and placed it upon the desk gently. He sighed and adjusted his round glasses. Drew parted his lips, tongue nestled into an active position, yet his mistakes seemed to zip him shut indefinitely.
He clicked his tongue one last time. It was louder than he’d expected. But, something else was coming and now perhaps he would have to wallow in self-pity once again.
“I should have realized that this would happen. I am a bit disappointed, overall.”
Drew frowned. The question burned, screaming for the iron to rise, but he’d come to learn something important in his fifteen years of life: desperation was evidence of feeble attempts not to plunge into the abyss. Depression would get him nowhere.
Mr. Graham scratched his chin. He had a little stubble on his young face.
Drew couldn’t figure it out, wondering what had happened. “I suppose,” Mr. Graham said with moist eyes. “That I expected more of you, Mr. Burgundy. This time around.”
Drew finally looked down; maybe it was just the gaze, but he couldn’t handle it. If only the dark blue carpeting could produce prose, or at least some sort of ultimate story. Unfortunately, his dust mites couldn’t speak for him—that was his job.
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