A Naked Singularity: A Novel

A Naked Singularity: A Novel by Sergio De La Pava

Book: A Naked Singularity: A Novel by Sergio De La Pava Read Free Book Online
Authors: Sergio De La Pava
The various voices got louder and the woman did this great thing where after she made what she felt was a particularly pointed remark, but which in reality was shot through with meekness, she would move the hair away from her face with a lovely hand, which maneuver was quite yummy. At the end of the stairs, on top of the city, she went left to my right and I watched her shrink wishing I would one day see her again. But where I was you could never arrange that kind of sequel. You just never saw the person again was what happened.
    I walked through City Hall Park, past the iced fountain and through the gloved hands pushing flyers, to the lobby of the only building in the area that looked like it shouldn’t even contemplate generating revenue. There was a new sign between the newsstand and the elevators. It said the entity that signed my criminally feeble paychecks had floors four through nine and that its Complex One was on nine. It said the Attorney-in-Charge could also be found on that floor and that his name was Thomas Swathmore. I wondered if this last part hadn’t been better written in pencil.
    I grabbed the two tabs and started skimming them back to back in front of the elevators. Holding them that way you could almost feel the competition heating up between them. The Post was all over Tula with a picture of a rattle below a giant OH BABY! Inside was a description of the grim horror with quoted reaction all the way from Holland. There was a poll too. Thirty-three percent said the kid would turn up the very picture of health. Fifty-two percent said no way look into adoption and fifteen percent wanted the pollster to repeat the question; of those fifteen percent, seventy percent later admitted to having understood the question the first time. Meanwhile, sixty percent said it was wrong to do a poll on such a subject but participated anyway while forty percent thought it perfectly legitimate to do such a poll but wanted no part of it. The Daily News countered. Seems our mayor was the newly christened CAPTAIN VIDEO given his newfound interest in
video-enhanced law enforcement
. There was a map. The red areas were new smile-for-the-camera zones. The green areas would remain as before, i.e. patrolled solely by the naked eye. Lastly, the blue areas were in dire need of a video presence but the vigilantes were too afraid to be stationed there.
    I stepped off on nine to see Denise’s eyebrows rise and her mouth open slightly meaning I was precisely the person she was looking for but couldn’t yet address because of the phone at her ear. Afterwards she smiled hello and “Malkum Jenkins called, he’s in court waiting for you.”
    “Nice to know, that it?”
    “Tom’s looking for you.”
    “Great. Since?”
    “Maybe quarter to nine?”
    “Time is it now?”
    “Forty-two after ten.”
    “I see, not good. Listen Denise if you’ll be so kind as to keep this little conversation confidential, I will now rotate my body in the appropriate manner and return home.”
    “Sure.”
    “Already one of those days let me tell you.”
    “Sorry honey, he’s in his office.”
    “Thanks.”
    I walked until the brief hall ended then popped my head forward to spy Tom’s green door, three-quarters closed and adrift in a sea of varying browns. I listened and heard no speech that sounded as if it were being issued from behind clenched teeth then took exaggerated cat burglar steps to my office in the opposite corner. I was alone in there for a change although I saw it would be temporary. The furry jacket on the back of Leon’s chair, the kind with the leather ovals that tell old-timers like its owner where the elbows go, meant he would soon return and the white sneakers with pink touches on Julia’s desk meant she was nearby as well. I sat at my desk between theirs.
    I stared at the jacket and just like that wanted to be Leon Greene, Esq. I wanted those life moments of highest suspense and relevance to be in my immutable past. Wanted to

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