I think I said all I need to regarding steampunk kittens yesterday. Now that’s covered. I can move on.
“Dammit.” John’s head sunk to his hand, “Every time. Every single time.” He clamped his hand tighter over his face and ground at his temples.
His copilot, Varsha Smith, regretted not waiting one more minute before entering the cockpit. John was blustering and she’d not yet tread this ground successfully. If she didn’t end up listening to him whine for an hour she’d ended up getting yelled at for the same length of time. It was a pattern she recognized; she wondered if he did too.
“Wall or sponge?” Varsha asked.
He met her eyes and neither looked away, but John’s attention was elsewhere, like he was solving a quadratic equation in his head: first, outer, inner, last… She decided to help him get to the solution faster.
“Do you want me to be a wall to punch or a sponge for you to cry into?” Harsh, but real.
His face hybridded between a boy caught lying to his mother and one getting a bike for Christmas. Finally, she’d slotted through. A spark of fear dropped in lap like a hotly ashed cigarette. What hell lay in wait in their relationship now?