At the first break between classes, Ayn found an empty corridor and called her dad. She groaned as the message played in Lettie’s all too familiar cool, professional voice, “Please leave a message for Chief Science Counsel Hyarzden.”
“Why can’t you even do your own message, dad?” Ayn said into the phone. “I need to talk to you. Please call. I’m worried about you.” And then, thinking about Lettie’s chiding remarks earlier, added, “I know you’re busy with important work and all … but … I miss you. Please let me know you’re okay. Bye.”
She saw that Mearzt had left several messages, but it was time for math class, and the test she didn’t really feel ready for.