Fuck conferences. Just fuck ‘em. They were boring, the food was terrible, and they made Jane sad, because astrophysicists were like the popular girls in high school and apparently really liked to throw around words like “crackpot,” “inconclusive,” and “untested.”
were the worst.
It was maybe a
little unfair to paint them all with the same brush, but even the
ones who didn’t try to tear Jane down had never said a word in her
defense. So fuck 'em.
They could crow
about their conclusions on binary star systems and measuring
early-universe gamma radiation and compare the length of their
hyper-powerful telescopes or whatever, but not a one of them had
helped, encouraged, or peer-reviewed Jane’s work. Except for Dr.
Selvig, but he was in Peru, taking readings and wearing
sarongs like a boss.
What all this meant
was that one Darcy Lewis was stuck in a very nice hotel with a bunch
of assholes who were trying to figure out how to eat crow and
patronize Jane at the same time. Darcy could see that her physicist
was vibrating with a deadly combination of jetlag, over-caffeination,
smugness, and righteous rage. Darcy was uncomfortably aware that her
boss was either about to punch someone, burst into tears, or start
doing that supervillain cackle that Darcy had only heard once and
never wanted to hear again.
And it was only the
opening cocktail party.