"Please call me Angie, Doctor Frank. I liked being Angela a lot more than being Meredith."
He nodded and gave a smile, practiced and neutral. "Very well, Angie. Can you tell me about your last Outing?"
She crossed her arms and gave a slight sigh. "Why? I told Mark all about it already. I was," she paused, "debriefed." That last word she pronounced quite deliberately.
Doctor Frank tapped his tablet and flicked to some new screen of data. "I know. I read about what you did. It was very well done, Mer... Angela. I'm more interested in what you think about it; how you feel."
With her eyes rolled, she started to recite. "Oh, all right. Three months ago, I was enrolled in St. Augustine's School. One month ago, I became friends with one Germania Stratham, aged thirteen. Four days ago, I was invited over for her father's birthday dinner at their estate. As Mark predicted, he got drunk and tried to touch me." She paused, and pulled the hem of her t-shirt down as much as it could go. "I hit him with a statue, just as Mark planned. He died."
"What do you mean? That was the job. You asked me about the job, right?" Her eyes settled on a miniscule piece of dust on her jeans, too small for un-augmented eyes to see. She flicked it away.
"Yes, that was the target, but that wasn't the job. You weren't done yet."
Angela fiddled with her shoelace. "And then I noticed that another guy was in the room."
She looked up. "Do I have to, Doctor Frank? I mean, it's right there."
"Like I said, Angela, I'm interested in how you feel about what you did."
"Killing Mr. Stratham wasn't very hard. I mean, Mark showed me all the bad things he was doing. And besides, he ... well, you know. He used the magic words."
The doctor looked up. "You remember?"
"Not what they were. I remember Mark saying something, then my mind became all clear-like. I mean, until then, I was thinking about the dress I was wearing, how Germania was so good to me, and then Mark called my mobile, and..." A silence settled over the room. She stared at the bookcases lining the far wall and tried to memorize the titles.
After some quick jabbing at the tablet computer, Doctor Frank cleared his throat. "All right. Back to the job. You had just killed Stratham, and there was this other man in the room."
She nodded, though not to the doctor. "Well, he looked surprised. He kind of took a step to the door, but then started walking at me."
"How did he approach?"
Perhaps to encourage her, perhaps subconsciously, he leaned forward. Angie saw his holstered pistol under the lab coat. The hammer was cocked.
"Carefully. Like when we are in grappling practice, you know? I didn't know what to do."
"Didn't you still have the statue in your hand? Why didn't you take him on? Were you worried you couldn't win?"
Her eyes snapped up to lock with the doctor's. "Of course not! I would've kicked his ass. He had his hands up too high."
She demonstrated his form, and Doctor Frank quickly straightened his back. His eyes widened for a heartbeat before his professional, interested-but-neutral expression resumed.
"So why didn't you fight him?"
She made a quiet tsk of annoyance as her mouth twitched to the right. "Because, Mark said it had to look natural. This wasn't like my last job, you know."
"One moment." Doctor Frank slid his finger across the glass for a few seconds, then quickly scanned a screen. He swallowed, blinked and cleared his throat again. "Yes, yes. Well, back to this job. He was approaching you, and you..."
"I cried. I dropped the statue and cried. I started shaking Mr. Stratham and telling him to wake up. I said I was sorry."
Her sudden pantomiming the motion caused Doctor Frank to flinch, but his hands never let go of the tablet.
"What did he do?"
"Mr. Stratham? He was dead." Her deadpan delivery stilled the conversation for a heartbeat.
"No, the other man."
"I don't know. I wasn't looking."
The doctor blinked twice. "Come again?"
"I was facing Mr. Stratham, like this. And the other man was over there, kind of behind me."
"Why did you do that? He could have drawn his gun or -"
"I didn't know he had a gun then. Besides, I didn't want to beat him up. Bruises, remember? That wouldn't look natural." Again, she turned the last word almost into a sarcastic jab.
"So you were pretending..."
"Yep. It was all supposed to be an accident, right? I was pretending, and he ... well, he hugged me."
Again, she imitated the motion, covering the iconic mouse logo on her t-shirt. Again, the abrupt motion caused the doctor's hands to tighten on the computer.
"I dunno. What sort of 'go on' do you want, Doctor Frank? I was crying, or pretending to, and he was telling me it was okay, that he saw everything and he didn't blame me."
Perhaps a little paler, one hand pushed his glasses fully on the bridge of his nose. His left hand, the side he wore his shoulder holster. "Well, it says here that you killed him, too."
"Yeah. I pressed his neck arteries. Not too hard. I don't think there were bruises. Mrs. Mortimer said that way, it would be mistaken for a stroke, right?"
"Why did you kill him?"
"When he said, 'Where did you learn to do that?', I knew he saw everything, just like he said."