Nick leaned against the passenger side window as his mom backed out of the driveway and tried fall back into the world of sleep he had been forced to abandon. His scruffy brown hair was just long enough help block out some of the morning light. If the judge had told him that waking up at 8:30 each Saturday was part of the deal, he might have opted for the jail time instead.
A constant jostle of stops and starts kept the dream world at bay, but thoughts of the day that denied him his sleep filled his mind. His dress shoes squeaked noticeably from lack of use in the quiet of the courtroom. Fear struck him like a sledgehammer to the chest when the bailiff would not let his mom join him in the front. That was the moment he knew the judge was going to treat him like an adult even though he had just turned 17.
Marcus Norman hated being cold. He had tried to explain this to the new owner of Java the Cup, but was immediately met with a statistical analysis (including charts) about how the 69.4 degree temperature produced a higher rate of hot beverage sales. Marcus Norman did not much like nerds either. So now, even on warm nights, he ordered his coffee black and sat outside charting constellations in the blinking lights of the fireflies.
The first time Marcus met Superman was at the Valley View Mall on a Tuesday. Both were eyeing the same pair of shoes. (Although Marcus later became suspicious of their shared affinity for grey New Balances after he realized that an alcove of ladies dressing rooms were located on the other side of that wall.)