Marty's mind was not only blank, but it was not present. At least, the logical side of his mind was out to lunch. And not just that, but there was a chaotic food fight in the lunch room.
He blinked. His hands moved to the belt that held his pants. But his hands were not about to undo the buckle. They were grabbing on as if to a life preserver.
And then the rising chaos of the fighting thoughts reached a climax. One thought had gotten a hold of the pressurized ketchup dispenser, and was swinging the nozzle around his head like a lasso. The food fight stopped in an instant as this thought cried out the most embarrassingly crude idea.
"Don't you want to take your pants off for her! Whoohoo!"
Marty went red, every participant in the food fight looked up at once, and an awkward silence washed over his mind. Thankfully, his logic finally kicked in to explain the situation and completely disregard the unfortunate outburst.
Duh. There was something important about the pants.
But this revelation was too late as Katie swept across the room to...assist him. He hastily extended a hand and said, “Whoa, I can do this.”
Katie stood a foot away to let him get on with it, but she was radiating impatience as Marty fumbled with the unfamiliar belt buckle. He finally got it lose, and pulled them down to modestly reveal his striped boxers. She did not look at him even once as she grabbed the pants off the floor and strode from the room. Marty was left standing in his boxers by the bed, feeling rather over excited. What the hell had just happened?
Katie returned a moment later, tossed him a new pair of pants, and then vanished again. He put them on slowly as his mind fell into deeper thoughts and as the janitor cleaned the lunch room. He finally came to the decision that Katie was obliged to explain everything. At least, this was assuming that there was much to tell.
He frowned. Of course there was plenty to be explained. There was a conspiracy going on behind the scenes, and he was involved. A smile crossed his lips. That meant that he was involved with Katie. He looked up as she entered the room.
“Well,” she sighed. “The message was as I expected.” She held up a piece of tattered paper in a limp hand, her elbow in her side, a strand of hair over a sleepy expression of thought. Marty took this image in with a beating heart. She blew at the strand of hair absent-mindedly and then sat down on the bed.
“Aren’t you curious?” she asked, a small smile guiding her eyes to his face as she looked up from beneath her hair.
Marty let out a pleasant breath. “Yes,” he said, surprised by the confidence in his voice. “I am.”
She laughed and looked at the carpet. “This letter,” she said, waving it mildly in the air, “was sewn into the seams of your pants.”
Marty frowned. “But who put the pants on me?”
“The very same man who removed your old pants.”
Marty frowned further, found he wasn’t flexible enough, and moved into a lighter expression of deep thought. “But my pants were removed in the police station…I think.”
Katie let out a large sigh as if he was looking at it all wrong. She rose to her feet in dismissal. “I’m sorry. I can’t be having this conversation with you. We’re going to have to go.”
Marty watched as she breezed past him to the door. She did not appear to be waiting for him. And yet, Marty couldn't help but to stand where he was, taking in the lingering scent that had passed with her presence.
“Marty!” she said. “Get moving, you silly dreamer.”
Marty jolted in shock at hearing his name and spun on his heel. The suprising intimacy of what she had refered to him as caused him to smile and respond in a lively voice. “Right! And where are we going?”
“To the airport. Our flight leaves in less than an hour.” And then her beautiful head was gone from the door with a pert smile. Marty gaped.
“A honeymoon already?” asked the outcast voice with the ketchup nozzle. Marty ran after her.