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.Not sure if he’s the one I like or if the one I like is Shadow.Maybe it’s both.It’s definitely not Malcolm Dove.Like I said before, a girl doesn’t think clearly when faced with electrocution, and if Ed is a toaster then I am a girl with a knife.I’m about to say something in reply, maybe ask him what he means or just let him kiss me, which I think is where we’re headed, when I have a flash of Malcolm’s nose and a flash of him eating a cockroach and this wave rises in me and I’m pretty sure I’m going to throw up.I think all the experts agree that throwing up while a guy tries to kiss you is bad.It puts all but the very, very keen off and I’m not sure that Ed is very, very keen.I try hard to stop thinking about Malcolm’s blood but the harder I try the more I think.‘It’s Malcolm’s nose,’ I say to Ed, so he doesn’t get the wrong idea.‘And the cockroach.’ I don’t want him to think it’s the thought of his kiss that’s making me sick.‘Lean forward,’ he tells me.‘And think about something else.’‘Like what?’‘Something good.What’s something good?’We can definitely rule out this exact moment.‘My glass.I like my glass.’‘Okay, so talk about the studio.How long have you been working there?’‘Since Year 10.’ I lean further forward and take deeper breaths.‘My parents couldn’t afford the whole cost so I cleaned in exchange for lessons.’‘Not a lot of money in writing or comedy, huh?’‘Not a lot.But they have jobs on the side and one day Dad’ll get famous and Mum’ll get published.You don’t need money, anyway.’‘You need it to pay the rent,’ he says.‘But not to be happy.’‘Glass makes you happy.Can’t do that without money.’I sit up.‘No.But there are ways.You find ways.Like cleaning.’‘You think you could be happy? Cleaning for a living?’‘Yep.If it meant I could do my glassblowing.’‘You’d eventually want to work on your glass all the time though, wouldn’t you? Are your parents happy, working at some shitty job on the side of what they really love?’‘I didn’t say that they have shitty jobs,’ I keep taking those deep breaths.‘They have jobs on the side but they’re happy.Lately, Mum’s been writing loads.She’s nearly finished her novel.’Since Dad moved into the shed she’s stopped saying she’s too tired to write.She comes home and cooks us dinner and we talk.She likes hearing about glass, about what I learn from Al.How I have to cool my pieces the right way or internal pressures make them explode.After dinner I do my homework while Mum types away.We go until midnight sometimes, stopping for cups of tea but not talking because Mum says an artist needs headspace.Mrs J and Al say the same thing.So does Dad.‘My mum really likes that she and Dad are artists, even if it means we don’t have much money.They tell me to work at my art, no matter what.’‘Stop talking for a while,’ Ed says.‘Breathe.’I put my head down again and think about Mum telling me that a person has to do what they love and that money doesn’t matter.Dad didn’t move into the shed because they were fighting about money.It would be less confusing if that were the reason.I feel better after a while.Ed’s breathing calms me.So does the wash of traffic coming from the side road.I sit up and look at the monster waves on the wall.‘You think it’s a tsunami?’‘Tsunami waves aren’t steep like other waves,’ Ed says.‘If you were in a boat in deep water a tsunami might go underneath and you’d never notice.It’s only when they’re close to shore that they get big.’‘I didn’t know that.You could be in trouble and have no idea.’‘Uh-huh.’I think back to what Ed said about the money.Maybe Mum and Dad are fighting because of that but I never realised.‘I wonder what Shadow does for a living.’‘Maybe he’s unemployed.Maybe he can’t get a job.’‘He buys paint,’ I say.‘Maybe he steals it.’‘He wouldn’t do that.He’s not that sort of person.’‘You didn’t think Malcolm was that sort of person.’‘So you think Shadow is a bad guy?’ I ask.Ed scratches his head and looks at me.‘We should stop talking, in case you think of the blood and the broken bones and the cockroach.’The others arrive while I’ve got my head between my legs again, taking deep breaths.‘Things are going well I see,’ Leo says.Jazz kneels and holds back my hair.‘You got her drunk?’‘I didn’t get her drunk,’ Ed says.‘I got her attacked by Malcolm Dove.Technically, he attacked me and she attacked him.Broke his nose.’Leo laughs when he hears that.He slaps me on the back, which really isn’t a good idea.‘I need water,’ I say.Jazz and Daisy help me over to the tap.After I feel better we move to the skate ramp and lean our backs against the curved concrete so we can watch the guys.‘What do you think they’re talking about?’ Jazz asks.‘It looks kind of intense.’‘Maybe how much money Leo owes Malcolm,’ I say.Daisy hugs her legs.‘Dylan talks about that guy but I always thought he was exaggerating.’‘He’s threatening to pierce Ed’s nipple if Leo doesn’t pay up.’ I stare across at the wave on the wall.‘This has been the strangest night [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]