“You know what I think?” Casey drawled, raising his eyebrows high onto his forehead.
“Zach planned this.”
“Zach?” Mikey laughed, “He can’t even write a sentence without a type-o.”
Casey skeptically raised both eyebrows and pushed back his head back into the fleshy folds of his neck as he slowly peeled the cover off his macaroni and cheese.
“He has the motive.” He lisped, “I’m shocked no one has thought of this before. Zach hates the dress code, right? He probably just sent the e-mail to himself from Nilla’s computer.”
“Yeah, well who took the picture then?”
“I don’t know, but I heard Kylie WAS absent from Literature that day. Nilla also hates Kylie ever since she made out in public with Josh.”
“Zach and Kylie collaborating against Nilla? That’s just ridiculous---”
Suddenly the double doors swung open. Zach sauntered in and the GSA table fell silent, exchanging awkward glances with one another. Zach grunted, and pulled up to the table just as Casey scrambled to stash away the printed e-mail.
Zach swiped it angrily, “So this is your lunch time conversation?”
“It’s… everyone’s conversation.” Replied Casey, unapologetically.
Zach pulled up a seat and sighed, “I really don’t want to talk about it. It’s bullshit, okay?”
“Casey has his own conspiracy theory.” Mikey chirped playfully.
Casey’s eyes widened animatedly, then narrowed, “Yeah. Good planning, Zach.”
“Planning? What planning, you think I did this? Bullshit.” spat Zach, “How could I type up that e-mail when he was watching me the whole time?”
“It’s awfully convenient,” Casey said slowly, “that this happened just when he started bitching to you about the dress code.”
“If I’d want to get rid of someone, it would be Nasty, not Nilla.”
Mikey and Casey exchanged glances.
Zach held the paper in front of his eyes, and quickly scanned over the e-mail.
“And this whole e-mail is too obvious. What are you, stupid? Why would he call me sexy when he was ready to jump at my throat yesterday? This is bullshit, do you really think I could come up with this kind of crap?”
“Yes, I do.” Replied Casey, “There is no one else who would and could do it.”
Zach was pensively quiet for a moment, reading over the e-mail again and again, until a spark lit up his eyes.
“Each sentence is three words more or three words less than the other one. There is always a positive or negative amount of three words between each sentence.”
Mikey blinked, “So?”
“I… I can tell you who did it.”
Zach furrowed his brow and thought back to the office, back to the plant in the corner, the spider on the ceiling, the ceiling the cheap carpeting, and everyone he had seen that day. His mind doggedly eliminated one person after another from suspicion, analyzing one factor after another before reaching the undeniable conclusion. Upon recognition, his eyes darkened earnestly and he broke into a cold sweat. Casey inquisitively leaned towards him.
“…It was Gentry.”
Casey gagged on his macaroni and cheese.
“Well…” Mikey drawled, “Gentry does have office duty. That gives him access to the staff computers.”
Felix was silent for a moment, and looked to Mikey before saying, “It must take a lot of concentration to write like that...”
“Gentry has OCD.” Mikey cut in, “Sometimes people with that get used to certain ticks. Like doing things in threes. Hey Casey, do you still have that essay Gentry wrote for you?”
Zach blinked, “Gentry writes essays for you?”
“Yeah, sometimes.” Casey replied, pulling it from his backpack and throwing it on the table. They all leaned in, and Casey’s eyes glowed.
“Wow. I never noticed he wrote everything in threes.”
“Yeah…” Mikey smirked, “go confront him, Zach.”