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By Way of Today


Hazy Days

Summary for Wednesday, May 3: Stormy and the Receptionist go 12 rounds. But what comes after twelve?

Stormy rolls a shredded tire through the door of GCC. He finds the Receptionist and tells them he had a blowout on the highway and that he wants them to order another of the same tire. Stormy asks why all the chairs are out. The Receptionist says they wanted to start setting up for the lecture on Friday. Stormy needs to lie down in the back for a while and tells the Receptionist to hold his calls. Stormy steps back into the cubicle to mention that the bathroom is out of soap again. A moment later, he steps back in to ask if the Receptionist wears glasses, because he thought he saw them wearing glasses yesterday but can’t remember now. The Receptionist admits to wearing them occasionally but just for show. “What show?” The Receptionist clarifies that their glasses are just to look different depending on the situation. Sometimes it’s helpful. Stormy nods.

While resting on the couch Stormy has a vision: A pen sits just out of reach. His arms won’t move. His tongue rolls out like a lizard’s and snatches the pen. Stormy wakes coughing. He tells himself it was a dream. When he looks at his watch the hands are off and rattling around in their casing. Stormy closes his eyes and opens them. His watch is working but the time is wrong. The Receptionist is on the phone trying to order a tire. Stormy peeks in to ask what time it is ”really.” Stormy resets his watch and says he’s going out for a bit. Before he gets out the door Stormy returns and tells the Receptionist he remembers that he wanted to talk about pens. He’s noticed that the Receptionist is using their own pen and wants the office pens to met the standards of a professional office such as GCC. Stormy recommends visiting the local pen store in the plaza, and perhaps, aspiring to one day own a Montblanc. Before Stormy gets out the door the Receptionist asks what day it is. If yesterday was day 12 then today is day 13 but there's no tape for day 13. Stormy says they start again at 1. When reexamining the tire’s many holes and expressing thanks that Stormy was not hurt, the Receptionist gets their whole hand stuck inside the tire. Their hands now as filthy as Stormy’s they decide that soap isn’t something that can wait 3-5 business days for shipping. They leave a note saying they went to get soap. Stormy returns to GCC and isn’t happy that the tire is still there. He finds the note about the soap, crumples it, and writes his own--a list of three things to find. They are 1. Crystals; 2. Doris; 3. Them too.

In the showroom of Stanley Brown Jewelist Stormy peruses the cases looking for a gift for Faith, or so he says. The shop owner asks what he's looking for and he says he doesn't know. They both look concerned. Stormy asks if they deal in crystals. The jewelist is slightly puzzled by the question. Stormy half dismisses it and says that his wife has mentioned them and he's wondering if that’s the kind of thing he could get. Stormy trails off, muttering to himself about the crystals, and slowly exits the shop.

The Receptionist returns, finds Stormy’s list, and takes the tire out to the alley. They wonder if sometimes wearing glasses and sometimes not wearing glasses is confusing Stormy. That glasses and no glasses may be two entirely different people. They attempt to put the glasses away but their shirt has no pockets.

On a bench in Minos Park, Julie reads a children’s book to Brenda. Three teenagers stumble in. One of them backs into a trash can and nearly falls over. The other friends laugh and the stumbler kicks over the trash can. More laughter. Julie tells Brenda not to pay them any attention. She flashes back to a previous conversation with Abe: Julie asks Abe what the thinks about the vandalism of Charles Tavern and other stores around the Plaza. And now a murder at the docks! Abe says it’s troubling. It’s as if an evil has rolled across the border like a fog. Julie closes the book and tells Brenda they should get home.

At GCC, the landlord Lynn stops by to tell Stormy about the upcoming fumigation. She finds the office empty with all the lights and the television on. She peaks in the back office then returns and writes a note. She pins the note to the cork board by the coffee maker and turns off the lights when she leaves.

Down at the docks, Abe kneels on the ground in front of a chalk outline, shaking his head. Other LPD officers take photos and wrap up caution tape. Roman walks over to Abe and says the toxicology report came in: same as the others. “Damn,” says Abe. “Why am I not surprised... that’s 4 art handlers this month?” Roman nods and says, “All just low level employees. But there’s a mastermind behind this operation.” Abe asks if he still thinks this is related to the new synthetic Haze. Roman says that yeah, he’d bet almost anything it’s related to Haze. In New Orleans it was called Halo. The patterns were similar there. Art is probably just the medium of distribution. Abe says, “Looks like someone’s trying to corner the market here in Laredo.” Roman is lost in thought, “Not many people can make something this complicated... It’s like some kind of chemistry set gone crazy.” Abe gets a thought and looks up at Roman. “Wait - did you say chemistry set?”

Tomorrow’s News:

Stormy cools off.
Abe has a proposition.