“What do you think, Harry?”
The afternoon sun highlighted her piebald dye-job like a spotlight. There was no ignoring it and saying that she looked like a Jackson Pollock painting wouldn’t work.
Poking his finger into the corner of his eyes, he withdrew a pearl of tapioca-like goop and rolled it against his thumb until it vanished. Like he wanted to do.
“Well? Do you like it?”
His breathing shortened and filled his chest with lead. The unspoken answer broke into pieces and filled the room like a puzzle he couldn’t complete. He was screwed.
His mind wandered looking for oxygen and words while his eyes focused on the other hairs emerging from Lady Smock’s head – the one on her chin that looked like the start of an adolescent goatee, and the errant eyebrow hair that waved at him like an antennae.
She was obsessed with hair but oblivious to the recent arrivals on her face; it was Harry’s hairy mug that rose in her sights. Once, when he’d fallen asleep reading the newspaper, he awoke to her hovering over his nose, snipping rogue bristles with the tiny scissors in his Swiss Army knife. He wrestled the weapon away from her and warned her NEVER to touch his nose again. Now, whenever the thatch thickened she pleaded with him to let her at it, arching her burgeoning brows and promising to reward him. That lascivious hair pointed straight at him, a divining rod of his weakness. She didn’t want him to look like a hobbit, she declared. Which inevitably led to a discussion of his hairy big toes. Would he consider waxing them? Harry thought that was too much to bear. Were his toes to be groomed like a moustache? His toes recoiled when she explained it meant removing the hair by applying hot wax and ripping it out by the roots.
“Well, Harry? What DO you think of my new hairdo?”
“You look like a spring pansy, sweetheart. Would you like to trim my ear hairs?”