A Short Story About Love

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A Perfume of One's Own

So Walter gets his equipment ready to go poking around in Peter's eye and he asks Peter, "What's in New York?" Peter says he keeps telling Walter that it's what's not in New York, i.e. Olivia. Walter, administering eye drops, tells Peter that he admires him, because even though Walter was the one who told him what the right thing to do was, he's not sure he himself would have had the strength to do it. Peter asks if that's Walter's way of thanking him for taking his advice. "It's a particularly obtuse way to admit that you're a better man than I," says Walter. That makes Peter chuckle, and he rattles off that Greek phrase (which he still sounds awkward saying, but I'm not sure that many people could say it very casually. Well, maybe the Greeks) that means, "Be a better man than your father." Peter says someone told him that a while ago, but it seems strange to hear Walter say it.

Anyway, Walter moves his magnifier/light array into place and digs the tweezers into Peter's eye, coming up with a little black disc smaller than Peter's pupil. "There's writing on it," says Walter. Sure: "If found, please return to September, c/o the Observers." Or some such.

After a commercial break, the Bishops have found an address -- 228½ Morrow Street -- scrawled in the slightly otherworldly Observer script. Walter figures that if they hadn't found it, it would have imprinted itself in Peter's brain anyway, calling it "Organic ocular suggestion," and that Peter wouldn't have even been aware of it, but he would have been drawn to that location. Any implanted disc in my eye got dislodged just now because of my severe eye-rolling.

Meanwhile, some FBI guys have strolled in with Jane Hall's body. Walter's utterly confused. "I think it's a case," Peter whispers to him, and Walter instructs the agents to wheel her on in.

Meanwhile, Scarface is cleaning muck out of some sort of freaky tanning bad, using a squeegee. There's all sorts of goopy fluids that he's collecting and discarding and eye-dropping etc., all in an unsettling shade of green. He puts a sample on a stick and sniffs it, closing his eyes in appreciation. I detect plum, hints of walnut and blackberry and human kidney, with an oaky finish.

Back at the lab, Walter's giving a lesson on how the human body is 60% water, but Mr. Hall's body -- the desiccated husk is on a slab next to his wife's -- was drained of all moisture. He's like a big piece of human jerky! Walter explains that the substance found on Jane's neck was a concentration of her husband's pheromones -- one of the substances that was removed when her husband's body was dried out. As for why someone would extract pheromones, Walter explains: "They control our moods, our appetite, who we give our hearts to," he says, and Olivia and Lincoln Lee exchange awkward glances.

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