The Contract

“Our first big client just drove away,” said Ben as he returned. “What a disaster.” 

“I’m relieved to see him go.” 

“Think he’ll sue us?” Ben looked exhausted slumped at the table, his head in his hands. 

Celeste massaged his shoulders. “At least we’re alive. He could’ve killed us.” 

Tzvi was impossible to work with, but he never wavered from his goal. Celeste admired that. She wondered if she had the passion to be as single-minded and determined as he was, to pursue her own vision. She decided to be a little more like Tzvi.

“What a failure,” he said. “I thought he’d be the first of many.” 

“We’ll know what we’re doing next time. We won’t be such pushovers. We’ll set studio hours with time for maintenance and repairs. And time to make our own artwork and sleep.”

“And let’s build that acid-exhaust booth tomorrow. We need to be ready.”

The transit strike ended three days later when the workers ratified a new contract. Subway trains rattling across the Manhattan Bridge once again provided the sound of waves breaking at the beach. 

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