Yoharie (part four)
Giarma Meets Trevor
Roberta swore…or she didn’t swear…
She avowed, maybe.
Dr. Witticombe wasn’t a friendly woman, per se. Effusion was not among her habits of speech. She was, Giarma thought, sort of an exasperated wizard. She came out of her study, imparted the knowledge you sought from her. Then her eyes strayed to the hall clock.
“He has a blog, Iron Seeds. I don’t really know how he gets his money…advertising, I guess…because, why would I know that? I’m not Kate Hibbler.”
Dr. Witticombe—the other—laughed through an open doorway. Roberta rolled her eyes. She heaved a sigh and shook her head.
“I apologize. I shouldn’t mention the Hibblers at all.”
She avowed, though, that you could knock with confidence at Trevor Royce’s door, that his weirdoness was ordinary weirdoness, not the scary kind. Home (ish) in her Dad’s living room, putting on gloss in the mirror, Giarma put on a fleece vest next, to make her shoulder-to-waist area formless and lumpy. She deeply resented this errand. What was wrong with Dawn, she couldn’t do it herself? Was she afraid of him?
Walking to the end of the cul-de-sac, weighed by reluctance, Giarma thought: What a ship of fools this neighborhood is! Iron Seeds…some creepy male vitamins. Does Dawn understand what she wants Val involved with?
So what does Giarma mean in Spanish?
Nothing. It doesn’t even sound like a Spanish name. Why can’t my mother make one up, like anyone?
And the guy would back off, with the hands, saying, “Whoa!”
Raise your voice, raise a certain breed of assholery—that right now in her life was super-triggering.
But…fair is fair. The scene was fiction. Maybe Trevor wasn’t so cozy with Dawn to have got a dossier.
She found herself glued to his stoop, frozen in irritation, certain this bell would play something cute and stupid. He opened, after two rounds of classic ding-dong, after a moment in which she’d heard thudding feet approach. He didn’t bug his eyes and jump back, Mat Busby-like, or say, “What can I do for you?”
He did have an ugly beard, a cartoon prospector’s. He was a little smelly.
“Howdy,” he said. “I think I know you.”
(2019, Stephanie Foster)