He kept looking toward the window beside the door at me instead of the action in the ring. In the ring.
“New around here?” asked Lichen Roosevelt, tending bar in this here town until her big break as a singer comes, national anthems being her specialty.
Axis-Windmill kind of looks toward her, kind of doesn’t. “We’ve met many times before, Marilyn,” he deadpans.
Marilyn? she thinks. Hadn’t heard *that* name in a long time. “Well… can’t recall. Many, huh?” She keeps wiping the wine glass in her hand, although it’s perfectly transparent now. She looks through it at him, watching his distorted steely eyes move here and there, sometimes toward the door, sometimes at her, sometimes in-between. But not at the action. Another lift, another slam to the canvas for Joey. Poor Joey Avatar. Looks like a rain of pain coming tonight. How did *she* get into this mess?
“That’s right,” he finally answered Lichen. He walks toward the door. He opens the door, telling me to come in and join him. He indicates the tables to his right. We sit down, no words between us. We watch Lichen tend bar. The action in the ring (in the ring) wraps up. Victor Eugenia O’Neill moves toward the bar, decided what kind of drink to order for Joey to make up for breaking a couple of her nails tonight. Usually: so gentle, so careful. Must have been the full moon, she reckons. Grasshopper should do it, extra mint.