HUMAN/SUPER Higher Learning 52

Frederica nodded.

“Then let’s get to work,” Karen said.


For the second night in a row, Frederica stood in front of the old movie house downtown. The red carpet and the celebrities were gone, replaced by the usual Sunday evening crowd. Frederica stepped inside and approached the box office.

“Hi, I’m looking for Griff,” she said.

“Through there,” the girl behind the counter said, pointing to an “Employees Only” door beside concessions. She handed Frederica a plastic card. “He left this for you.”


Frederica took the card and swiped it on the reader by the door. She climbed a twisting stairway to a narrow corridor one floor up. It was a bit of an arduous task after running around the Review offices all afternoon, but she made it. The third door on the right was marked “Projection”. She knocked.

“Come in!” a muffled voice called out.

Frederica took a deep breath and opened the door. On the other side, Griffith sat on a stool in a tiny room dominated by a huge, whirring film projector. He looked up at her and smiled.

“Hey, Fred,” he said. “Pull up a seat.”

She grabbed a stool from the corner and sat next to him, close enough for their knees to just barely touch. She glanced out the tiny window through which the projector shone its light. A Bollywood film was playing on the screen. She could just barely read the subtitles from here.

“So this is where you work?” she asked.

“Just part time,” he replied. “I mostly do it for the experience. And the free movies.”

“I can see the appeal,” she said, and was quiet for a while. “I talked to Karen today.”

“Oh yeah?” he said. “Were you able to find her a story?”

“No,” Frederica said. “Well… yes, but I didn’t give it to her. I didn’t feel right about invading people’s privacy like that. But it turns out it was all a setup, anyway. A test to see if I was decent person or not.”