When Gabe says that Stephen Silver “...is probably my biggest influence as an artist and having him do a sketch of one of my characters was a real treat” I need you to know that this is the most gigantic understatement that has ever been magnetically inscribed on a hard disk array. Let me tell you a story about Gabe and Mr. Silver.
Even I have a reverence for the man, a sort of reflected radiance, because Gabriel’s burning attraction to him is so intense. So when he came by the booth one morning as we were restocking shirts, I recognized him immediately and my breath caught in my throat. Gabe was prostrate on the floor, not in worship as I had originally thought but grabbing some shirts under the table to restock the shelves. I thought that he’d seen him and simply been struck dumb.
“Seems like you guys are doing great this year,” said Stephen.
“Thank you,” said Gabe, his head partially covered by the blue skirt around the table. He looked something like a nun, or some other breed of dedicated ascetic with an odd dress code.
Stephen looked over the shirts one last time and then began to trudge to his booth, past Star Wars but not quite to GameSkins. I was impressed. “I really thought you were going to freak out, man,” gesturing at him with a Strawberry Mousse pocky. “I think you’re growing as a person.”
“What are you talking about?” says he, annoyed. I get this a lot.
“That was Stephen Silver, your lord and saviour,” I said. “I assumed you would sink your teeth into his leg, and he would have to drag you around the convention.”
I could sense, then, that his mind had disengaged from his body, perhaps via some cord not discernable by rational methods. Fired into space by true discomfort, on a vector calculated to escape all current scenarios and the outcomes nested like seeds within them.
He broke into a run. He didn’t say where, but between you and me, I have a pretty good idea where he went.