Indigo Plateau | Morning | (20)
The other scientist was just so happy
that Colress honestly had no idea how to react to him. The professor happily commented, "Why, yes! So we will be working together. It'll be a pleasure to work with you, I'm sure."
Colress' polite smile never faded, but it flickered at Elm's next observation. "I... suppose this means I'll be taking the place of whoever died recently. I hope I get along with his partner and that I do well to continue his work."
Colress managed to keep himself from flinching at the reminder, and thankfully, the words seemed to snap R2 from his stupor. Between the two of them, maybe they could find a way to get out of any further questions. He could mention that he was Henry's partner, but Colress didn't think he could handle any questions or suspicions thrown at him right then.
He was sorely tempted to lay out the situation surrounding "Henry's partner" but neglecting to specify who that was, but he didn't want to think on that. He had come to the library with the intention to get away from those thoughts. He settled for a polite platitude, "I guess. I'm sure you'll do fine, however."
R2 then nudged him urgently, as if there was something important, and Colress took the cue to leave, "It was nice meet you, Professor, but I have to get going. R2 is reminding me that I have an appointment."
Elm and his Furret didn't need to know that he was basically going back to his room to hide and rest. He nodded in farewell before turning on his heel to walk out with R2 floating beside him. He sent a feigned cheerful wave before getting too far, "I'll see you later!" Hopefully...
he added internally. If he did see the professor again, it would be because he still had his job and wasn't rotting in a jail cell.
When they exited the library with the doors shutting behind them, the pair kept walking. R2 checked around them to see if they were alone before saying, "Well, he seems nice at least. At least a lot nicer than..."
When he saw the look Colress gave him, his voice trailed off. "Too soon? Okay, I'll stop."
Colress' annoyance stemmed from his despair yesterday, "It happened yesterday. Besides, it won't even matter if he's nice if I'm incarcerated for it."
The Beheeyem matter of factly stated, "Dude, I highly doubt you would be if they haven't already."
This did nothing to reassure Colress, and he cynically said, "It doesn't matter. If I'm the only one they can blame for it, then guess what? They'll blame me.""I dunno, you didn't have a reason to do it.""They could find one, I'm sure."
Sensing that continuing this argument was hurting Colress more than helping him, R2 decided to try focusing on something else. With all the subtlety of a freight train, he switched topics, "Do you wanna try the library again later? Or you could just send me. I could try finding that book that you were oh so interested in again."
He hoped that Colress would rise to the bait and focus on something else.
Colress wasn't stupid, but he appreciated that R2 was willing to leave the topic alone. However, he had to address that last question, "Oh dear gods, no. I'm not sure if I want to try again, yet, and I might take you up on that offer. But no, I am not interested in that... that..."
He wasn't even sure what to call that particular novel. While it was in the romance section, he was fairly certain that people were not reading it for well explored character relationships. He vaguely waved his hand as if that somehow would fill in the word for him, but when nothing came to mind, he just let it drop. The Beheeyem had been with him long enought to get the gist of Colress' gestures when speaking. "Garbage?""I was trying not to be rude."