The dark angel|12

​Then she screamed.Chapter 6Your hair!” Amy screamed. “Gillian, your hair! What did you do to it?”Amy’s own hair was short, cropped close in back and full in front. She had large, limpid blue eyes that always looked as if she were about to cry, because she was nearsighted but couldn’t wear contacts and wouldn’t wear glasses. Her face was sweet and usually anxious; just now it looked more anxious than normal.Gillian put a self-conscious hand to her head. “Don’t you like it?””I don’t know! It’s gone!””This is true.””But why?””Calm down, Amy.” (If this is the way everybody’s going to react, I think I’m in trouble.) Gillian had discovered that she could talk to Angel without moving her lips and that he could answer in her head. It was convenient.(Tell her you cut it because it froze. That ought to flip her guilt circuits.) Angel’s voice sounded the same as it did when she could see him. Soft, wry, distinctly his. It seemed to be located just behind her left ear.”I had to cut it because it was frozen,” Gillian said. “It broke off,” she added brightly, inspired.Amy’s blue eyes got even wider with horror. She looked stricken. “Oh, my God, Gillian-” Then she cocked her head and frowned. “Actually, I don’t think that’s possible,” she said. “I think it’d stay pliableeven frozen. Unless, like, you dipped it in liquid nitrogen. …””Whatever,” Gillian said grimly. “I did it. Listen, I’ve got it slicked back behind my ears right now, but the ends are sort of uneven. Can you smooth them out a little?””I can try,” Amy said doubtfully.Gillian sat down, pulling together the neckof the rose-colored bathrobe she was wearing over her clothes. She handed Amy the scissors. “Got a comb?””Yes. Oh, Gillian, I was trying to tell you. I’m so sorry about yesterday. I just forgot-but it’s all my fault-and you almost died!” The comb quivered against the back of Gillian’s neck.”Wait a minute. How did you find out about that?””Eugeneheard it from Steffi Lockhart’s little brother, and I think Steffi heard it from David Blackburn.Did he really save you? That’s so incredibly romantic.””Yeah, sort of.” (Uh, what do I tell people about that? What do I tell them about the whole thing?)(The truth. Up to a point. Just leave me and the near-death stuff out.)”I’ve been thinking all morning,” Amy was saying, “and I realized that I’ve been an absolute pig this last week. I don’t deserve to be called a best friend. And I want you to know that I’m sorry, and that things are going to be different now. I came to pick you up first, and then we’re going to getEugene .”(Oh, joy.)(Be nice, dragonfly. She’s trying. Say thank you.)Gillian shrugged. It didn’t seem to matter much what Amy did, now that she had Angel. But she said, “Thanks, Amy,” and held still as the cold scissors went snip behind her ear.”You’re so sweet,” Amy murmured. “I thought you’d be all mad. But you’re such a good person. I felt so terrible, thinking about you alone out there, freezing, and being so brave, trying to save a little kid-“”Did they find a kid?” Gillian interrupted.”Huh? No, I don’t think so. Nobody was talking about anything like that last night. And I haven’t heard about any kid being missing, either.”(Told you, dragonfly. Are you satisfied now?)(Yes, I am. Sorry.)”But it was still brave,” Amy said. “Your mom thinks so, too.””My mom’s up?””She went to the store. She said she’d be back in a few minutes.” Amy stepped backand looked at Gillian, scissors held in the air. “You know, I’m not sure I should be doing this…”Before Gillian could summon up a reply, she heard the sound of the front door opening and the rustling of paper bags. Then her mother appeared, her cheeks redwith cold. She had two grocery bags in her arms.”Hi, girls,” she began, and broke off. She focused on Gillian’s hair. Her mouth fell open.”Don’t drop the bags,” Gillian said. She tried to sound careless, but her stomach was clenched like a fist.Her neck felt stiff and unnatural as she held very still. “Do you like it?””I-I-” Gillian’s mother put the bags on the counter. “Amy … did you have to cut it all?””Amy didn’t do it. I did it last night. I just got tired of it long-” (And getting all wet and icy) “-and getting all wet and icy. So I cut it. So do you like it, or not?””I don’t know,” her mother said slowly.”You look so much older. Like a Parisian model.”Gillian glowed.”Well.” Her mother shook her head slightly. “Now that it’s done–here, let me shape it a little.Just touch up the ends.” She took the scissors from Amy.(I’m going to be bald when this is finished!)(No, you’re not, kid. She knows what she’s doing.)And, strangely, there was something comforting about feeling her mother gently wield the scissors.About her mother’s scent, which was fresh like lavender soap, without any hint of the terrible alcohol smell. It reminded Gillian of the old days, when her mom taught at the junior college and was up every morning and never had uncombed hair or bloodshot eyes. Before the fights started, before her mom had to go to the hospital.Her mother seemed to feel it, too. She gave Gillian’s shoulder a pat as she whisked a bit of cut hair away. “I got fresh bread. I’ll make cinnamon toast and hot chocolate.” Another pat, and then she spoke with careful calm. “Are you sure you’re all right? You must have been… pretty cold last night. We can call Dr. Kaczmarek if you want; it wouldn’t take a minute.”


About ayanfe

LIVE!!! LOVE!!! LAUGH!!! life is just too short to be sad #wink
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