There is little room in the basement for the monster to fit. But he waits for me.
Nervous and fumbling with a crushed pack of Lucky Strikes—my brand, though I’d quit years ago—he reminded me of a fledgling fallen from the nest. Eyes searching the room wildly, tufts of black hair sprouting in cowlicks, beaky nose becoming redder and redder each time he wiped it with his handkerchief. I was shocked to see him this way. When we were in school together at Columbia, he was cool, reserved, collected.