Approx. year 30 of the Addergoole School, a Friday-night staff party. Just about 10 years before the Myst/Luke drabbles. Yes, Luke is slow.
“Luke’s in love.” Mike stared at her drink. “I hate when he’s in love.” Her drink was, inexplicably, empty.
“You have such a wide data set to know that from?” Shira Pelletier poured Mike another drink.
“Yes.” She chugged the drink, and sulked at its emptiness again. “He’s been in love three times before, and each time it’s sucked.”
“Even when it was your daughter?” This time, Shira filled the glass with a clear liquid. Mike sniffed it: water.
“Even when it’s my daughter.” Mike flopped backwards onto the couch, her head in Shira’s lap. Shira petted nicely. It was a pity sh really didn’t want anything to do with Mike. The Daeva couldn’t figure that one out. Wasn’t she pretty enough?
“Well, Mike, I think you need a distraction. Because if the last time is any indication, it’s going to take Luke at least a decade to figure this one out.”
“I’m going to need a lot of distractions.”
“Or one persistent one. You could fall in love too, you know.”
Mike peeked up at Shira, but she wasn’t talking about herself. “Anyone in mind?”
“Nobody yet. But bring them to me, when you find them, and I’ll tell you if you’re on the right track.”
“You’re going to screen my dates?” Yes, she was serious. Smiling at him, but smiling with that just-watch-me sort of expression.
“Not your dates, Meckil. Not your bed buddies. But the one you should fall in love with? Yes, I will screen them.”
“What if there isn’t anyone?”
“Oh, Mike. You have to start looking before you can decide you’re not going to find anyone.”
“Yes, ma’am.” What else was there to say?
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