Re: Tandy/Alex: the comic book store
[Alex looked up at the tone in Tandy's voice, having come up with Saga issues 14, 18, 32, 33, and 40, struggling for a moment to not automatically associate those five numbers the way he usually did. The flatness of the denial and the way he clipped each sentence off like with a pair of shears caused him to quail a bit, his eyes to go slightly wider. Alex had a complicated history with charity and kindness, because he was exactly the high-risk sort of kid who wouldn't have survived the last three (two) years without it. And yet it was almost a no-risk proposition: if Alex died of hunger or starvation, he'd be back. But it was always in his mind that this time could be the last time, that all his quarters were spent and he'd Game Over with no continues.
He stood up, the comics held in his hands, but now wondering if he should hand them over, because it felt awkward to pretend like Tandy wasn't feeling something particularly strong and complicated right now. He wondered if the words were simply a denial that he'd been told, or that such a thing had even happened.] Don't think he thought so. Said somethin' 'bout "cosmic comic karma." [Alex decided to go over, and held out the five comics with both hands, like an offering of peace.] I thought it was nice a him. [Again, a shrug. Billy's "nice" cost roughly a third of Alex's monthly take home.]