JILL PRAYED THAT THE TWO GUYS WOULDN’T SAY ANYTHING ABOUT HOW SHE LOOKED, or be crude in any other way as she passed. Could eyes not be so accurate? Could they lie just for once? Could just once someone unpleasant-looking not be so predictable? The world didn’t have to change completely but, just for this afternoon, it would be nice. It wasn’t really a prayer—Jill didn’t believe in higher powers, angels, or well-meaning politicians. In any case, Jill wouldn’t have called it a prayer, but it was similar to what you might do while watching a roulette wheel spin, or what you might think while watching a turtle crossing the road, and knowing you won’t run the turtle over, but not being able to speak for the maniacs who might be peeling around the bend a few kilometers behind you, with turtle juice still fresh on their wheels.
For, as the two men started to speak, Jill knew that out there, even if she didn’t want to believe it, and even if it was unhealthy to think about too often, there were undoubtedly turtle-killers out there, and they felt no remorse, and not only do these people not avoid the turtles, but they go aggressively out of their way to run turtles over.