| Quote #7
Out-numbered, out-weighed, but not out-hearted. That's when Maniac felt it—pride, for this East End warrior whom Maniac could feel trembling in his arms, scared as any normal kid would be, but not showing it to them. Yeah, you're bad all right, Mars Bar. You're more than bad. You're good. (42.44)
It was easy for Maniac to be friends with Amanda or Grayson, but this is the real test for Maniac. Can he identify with, appreciate someone who isn't friendly, and who challenges him? Hey, he can be friends with a buffalo—so, we're thinking yes.
| Quote #8
Though each face showed no awareness of the other, they were in fact minutely sensitive to each other. If Mars Bar cranked up the pace just a notch, Maniac would pick it up within a stride; if Maniac inched ahead, mars Bar was there. If one veered to the left or right, the other followed like a shadow. One day one was the leader, the next day the other. (44.10)
Even after the birthday party, Maniac and Mars have a lot of history to overcome. This is a pretty good way to do it though, right? They use their shared abilities to push each other on, not push each other away.
| Quote #9
'All we sayin'—all she sayin'—is, you wanna come for a little, you know, visit? You want to? Well come on, you can. That's all. Don't go makin' no big thing man. Ain't no big thing.'
Maniac shuddered. He turned his eyes to the sky, beyond the flickering fireflies to the stars. If there were answers, they were as far away as the constellations. 'I gotta go,' he said, and before Mars Bar could react, he was over the fence and hurrying for the lean-to." (45.82-83)
So Maniac and Mars obviously have different backgrounds and approaches to friendship: it's pretty simple for Mars. So is Maniac making things more complicated than they need to be here?