If the draka noticed, he showed no sign of discomfort with the attention. His eyes were on her. "You look like you've come home."
"I love curry," she admitted. "My father made curries all the time when I was growing up. Coconut milk and chicken curry is my first comfort food."
"I hope Courthall is not driving you to comfort eating already."
Smoke laughed. "No, not at all. The exact nature of the problem is a conundrum, but I like puzzles. And all the people have been helpful and solicitous. Especially Blackwood and Licorice." The maitre'd led them to one of the tables near the center of the room. The restaurant was busy enough that the ones along the walls were all full.
"Ah, I am glad to hear it." He gave a slight shake of his head, smiling again. "I admit, I have had a private and rather irrational fear that you might find Courthall as difficult as your predecessor."
"Not at all! Blackwood not only flew me all the way back to Courthall himself, but he offered to guide me around on arrival. He showed me where the old gatherer was, and took me to the top of the House of Chambers so I could plant my own. Licorice was kind enough to show me about the rest of the building. She's the one who showed me the kitchen, where I discovered you had carpenter ants."
"Excellent! Ah, excellent that they took good care of you, that is. I remain unenthusiastic about the carpenter ants." He gave her another wry smile, and Smoke giggled. Corydalis hesitated a moment, then asked, "What department is Licorice in?"
Blond eyebrows drew together over gold eyes. "Hmm. Did she say what division?"
"No. She was fixing a problem with the hatch at the top of the Four's globe when we met," Smoke offered. "Why?"
"No reason. It's a large campus; I fear I don't know every employee." He said it apologetically, with the air of someone who thought he ought to know everyone. Or perhaps someone who had thought he did know everyone. Corydalis glanced down at his menu.
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