Scout's demeanor changed in an instant. There was a sudden realization and a blatant show of emotion. The corners of her mouth drooped. Her shoulders scrunched. Her eyes stared, not at Jeremy but through him. Her lip quivered.
"... Are you telling me the truth?"
As much as she wanted to doubt the boy's credibility, the fact that he seemed so put-upon really made it for her. The way his eyes were glued to the floor, The flash of disgust she caught in his expression, as if he were recalling something gruesome. No, he wasn't lying. Why would he have any reason to lie to her? There was nothing to gain from it.
Clarice was big. An axe to the arm sounded like the sort of thing she'd walk off. It sounded like a joke Scout herself would make, a private one, the kind you don't repeat to anyone else. But given the situation they... it didn't sound like a joke. Sounded pretty damn real to her.
Can't wrestle with a bad shoulder, Scout thought.
"Not everyone's gonna be waiting for the escape helicopter. Hope for the best, plan for the worst.
Don't cry. Only pussies cry. And Scout, you aren't a pussy. Are you? Don't turn your brain off Scout. Bad things happen when you turn your brain off.
Oh she wished it were that easy. It wasn't just the news of Clarice getting hurt that was breaking the dam in her tearducts. There were so many things occurring to her at once. The biggest one being that, yes, there really were monsters among her classmates. Those who would so blindly rush in and attack someone as nice as Clarice.
And she had actually considered becoming one of them. One of them
"I need to go," Scout said. Had to see a dog about a dislocated shoulder.
Shouldering her bag. as she rushed out the door, fumbling with the pack of cigarettes again. She needed to be alone. Think things through. Restrategize.
Scout wanted to tell them, Baker and Jeremy, to stay safe. She forgot.
(Scout Pfeiffer continued in And What You Get, Isn't What You See
(Skippage approved by espi.)