Thursday, February 03, 2005

She hugged herself and looked at her feet and sighed. Billie had a way of sighing with her entire body, in one dramatic motion. Nobody could seem as happy as she, or as sad. She asked, 'Aren't you angry?'


'At anything?'

'I'm not.'

'Then what is it?'

'I'm very tired.' True enough. 'Don't you ever get tired?'

She bit her lower lip, saying nothing.

'We aren't exactly the same species, Billie -'

'I know.'

'I did warn you.' He kept his voice flat and cool. 'Didn't I? You can't read me like you read your friends, and everyone. I'm a different sort of person -'

'"A human of a different line,"' she quoted. 'I know.'

'That's the way it is.'

'I do understand,' she insisted. Again she sighed, and she gave herself a long hug.

by Robert Reed
Orbit Books

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