Mr. Xing gave me a job in the herb shop stocking shelves not long after the Kevin incident, a way for me to make money without going on more errands. The next scroll didn't need to be delivered for another five weeks, so I had some time to recover.
Luckily my face didn't end up in the newspapers. The video, which leaked online, had me covered by my attacker's body, who I found out was named Henry Catch, and none of the security cameras got a good look at my face in the darkness. Besides, while they'd be searching all over Toronto for me, I was safe on the other side of the country.
I emptied a bag of dried mushrooms into a big glass jar on the shelf. They hit the bottom one by one with a hollow thump.
The entry bell rang and I didn't look up. I shook the bag out, put the lid back on, and walked to the counter.
"Mr. Xing!" I called. "There's a customer."
I couldn't speak Chinese, and a lot of the customer's couldn't speak English. Mr. Xing came out from the back and I went inside. I picked up the exact-o knife and cut open another box.
"Lizzy?" Mr. Xing called.
"Busy!" I said. I grabbed a bag of wood ear fungus and went out. And then, seeing who stood at the counter, I froze.
"Hey," he said. When I didn't answer he pulled something out of his bag. No not his bag, my bag, the one I'd left in the art gallery. "I wanted to give this to you." He pulled out the painting he'd given me. I'd completely forgotten about it.
Kevin opened up canvas, and the two symmetrical sides seemed hypnotic.
Rorschach in Autumn.
"Lizzy, can we talk?"