"No, we weren't related," explains a large-statured gentleman to David and Nate in spelling out his relationship to the deceased. Though it they were related, they'd have been Siamese twins connected by the lie about having a girlfriend who lives in Canada. Nate and David sit in the Sad Room across from the aforementioned large-statured gentleman and another, small, pipsqueak-y guy who I'd nickname "Dilton" from the Archie comic if it wouldn't cause that guy to give me a rambling, twenty-minute speech about how Archie isn't a real comic book like The Red Car Battery or The Spinning Spinster or Vita-man! Who Wants Justice For All People From A To Zinc! or whatever. The Dilton character offers that they knew Lawrence from "Hi De Ho," where they used to work. Nate asks if it's a grocery store, even though it sounds more like a cowboy-themed restaurant where all of the tables are named after Gene Autry. Dilton corrects him: "It's a comic-book store in Santa Monica." And it is. The biggest, dorkiest comic book store in the world, just mere blocks away from the biggest, dorkiest video store, where walking in and requesting 13 Going on 30 is greeted with the same level of contempt as if you walked in and yelled, "Do you sell babies? Because I haven't eaten a baby in almost an hour, and, make no mistake, I love to eat the babies." ["But if you go in there and happen to rent Tod Browning's Freaks, you will instantly make five new best friends and never, never shake them no matter how hard you try." -- Wing Chun]
David asks if Lawrence had a family, and Dilton says that they were "pretty much it," and the other fat guy (can we just call him "Living Lawrence"?) further explains, "We were all in the West-Co Blue Twister Society together." Nate has heard of the comic, noting, "That's the guy who can turn into a human tornado." Dilton is clearly treading on more firm conversational ground here, sitting up in his chair and all but knocking off his own black-framed glasses that look nothing like mine, thanks, and continues on, "Or shoot smaller tornadoes from his fingertips, with the strength of an F5. That's the strongest tornado there is." Living Lawrence and Dilton animatedly bang though the mythos behind the Blue Tornado (scientist works faulty machine, nuclear power jargon gets involved, the phrase "horribly awry" gets mixed in somewhere, and there's your Blue Tornado. And, come to think of it, there's your every other comic-book trope ever as well), which inspires an impressed Nate to note, "I had no idea he had a society." Dilton unearths Issue #1 of Blue Twister, the cover of which shows the most super of heroes laying the smackdown on a swastika-clad member of the German Army. Dilton reminds Nate and David that "the last thing [Lawrence] said before the bookshelf fell on top of him is that he wanted to be buried with it." Dilton then does a little impersonation of the gurgling noise Lawrence made right before he died, to which David can only respond, "We're very sorry for your loss." I think we've all learned a valuable lesson today. Dorks are hilarious. Even when they're dead.