Corduroy glanced at my hands and wrinkled his nose.
"Grimy," he noted.
I slapped my palms onto the table, fast, and watched him jump at the sound. Smiling, I gradually turned my palms up.
"Let's try this again, big brother. What the double-darn heck is going on?"
"One house martini, one bottle of sour cherry wine, two glasses," chirped Jeff. He looked down at my hands too but managed to stifle the wrinkled nose. I left my arms where they were. "I shall put everything at this end of the table."
Corduroy and I kept our gazes fixed across the table.
"I shall be back for your order...momentarily."
I tilted my chin down slightly.
Corduroy broke from my stare and picked up his wine. He knocked it back. Copper glinted on his skull, beneath his black hair. Butterflies fluttered in my stomach, my eyes widened. I sat up straight.
"No need to be rude, little sister." He gently placed the wine glass back on the table. His fingers, normally skeletal, were fat sausages, bulging. "It's been...so long. How are you? How is Pook?"
"Same, same, all the same," almost tripping over the words. "You?"
Steepling his fingers, he grinned, then yawned. Metal flashed at the back of his throat. His teeth snapped together. I pressed my back against the booth.
"Me? I'm, well, I'm...dehydrated, actually. Another martini?"
"I haven't started this one."
Corduroy poured himself another glass of sour cherry.