After a few tense minutes, we all took our plates and sat down for breakfast. It was pretty nasty fare. The pastrami wasn’t the only green item that wasn’t supposed to be green. We weren’t nearly a week into the lock-down of Manhattan, and we were eating food we would have sent back to the kitchen and raised a stink over any other time. Even the little orange cat didn’t seem interested. Bethel and Lynn, however, didn’t have a problem with it at all.
We ate in silence, but you could almost hear our minds racing. Kat finally couldn’t stand it anymore. She obviously felt she was the hostess, and she tried to be hostessly.
“Trish, you said you are in the Navy. Lynn, what do you do?”
Moira made a fart sound with her mouth, but Lynn beamed at the question.
“I’m an artist.”
I shot a warning look at Moira as she opened her mouth. Moira shut her mouth.
“Well, that is so interesting,” Kat enthused. “What medium do you work in?”
“Garbage,” Moira muttered.
“Oils,” Lynn replied. “But,” she admitted, “it’s hard to get supplies in my…current circumstances. I did draw something last night, however. There is all that paper in the bedroom.”
“That’s because it’s an office,” Moira whispered.
“Would you show us? Please?” Kat acted like Picasso had appeared before her. I decided she was probably a really nice person.
Lynn turned bright red and shook her head “no,” but she promptly got up and rushed into the office. We all shot each other looks, wondering what on earth we were going to see. Lynn reappeared with a piece of typing paper. She made a bee line for Kat with the paper extended in both hands, then she slowed, obviously suddenly embarrassed and shy.
“I really do want to see it,” Kat said gently.
Lynn picked up steam again, took the last few steps, and handed the paper to Kat. Kat looked at it for a few seconds, then she put her hand to her throat.
“Oh, my,” Kat said. Kate leaned over to see the drawing. Kate’s mouth fell open.
“What is it? Is it a dirty picture?,” Moira asked. “It wouldn’t surprise me if she drew a dirty picture, but I would be surprised if was dirty enough to shock paid flashers.”
Kat ignored Moira. “You are very talented, Lynn. May I share it with everyone?”
Lynn considered the question for a few seconds, then nodded “yes.” Kat handed the picture over to me. Mike, Trish, and Moira leaned in for the impromptu art show. My hands started shaking, and the figures on the paper briefly jumped into animation.
“What the hell did you see last night, Lynn!,” Moira exploded. She jumped off the sofa and rushed at Lynn. Lynn surprised Moira by standing her ground, and Moira actually bumped into her.
“I didn’t see anything,” Lynn said. “That was my dream. I dreamed it and it woke me up. So I drew it.”
I looked back down at the drawing and tried to still my hands. It really was good. Lynn was either a natural talent or she had some training. Mike and Trish and Bethel and I looked just like ourselves, watching TV from our pallets on the floor. Moira and Lynn herself were easily identifiable, peeking out of the office door like naughty children up past their bedtime. Kat and Kate were in the drawing, too, arm in arm in the kitchen. They were waving at Jonathan. Although Jonathan’s face wasn’t in the drawing, I instantly recognized his back. Lynn was a good artist, to capture someone’s identity from the back that way. We only saw Jonathan’s back because he was walking out the front door and toward a shadowy figure in the hallway beyond.