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Exit, Pursued By a Bear

Megan maneuvered herself wearily up the front steps of the house on Marigold Lane. She wondered why it was as exhausting to sit at a desk, proofreading contracts and scrubbing the database, as it had ever been to fetch and carry on a construction site.

When she opened the front door, she heard voices upstairs, so she paused to listen to identify them. She recognized G's gruff tones -- she hadn't realized how much she'd missed them -- and a murmur that was definitely Watson's milder contralto.

At the foot of the stairs, she paused again to, frankly, eavesdrop.

"-- can't cope with living here right now," G was saying. "And I... I know I'm unreasonable about a lot of things."

"I admit a change of scene may do you good," Watson said. "But six months?"

"It's the contract length," G said. "It'll give me a chance to check out some of the really old architecture. I've been getting a lot of requests for Renaissance Italy, and photographs only go so far."

Looking up the stairs, Megan could just see the top of Watson's mousy head -- they were standing far back from the stair landing, against the door to the third floor.

"Gonna keep this place?" Watson said in a painfully casual tone.

There was a pause. "For now," G said. "I've got a subletter for the time I'll be in Europe. After that, I'll see how I feel."

"Ah," Watson said.

"I'm afraid I'll have to impose on you a while longer with the cats," G said, her voice wavering dangerously, but her phrasing carefully formal.

"It's the least I can do," Watson said softly.

Megan shook herself and crutched noisily to her own door. But she could still hear them as she fumbled her keys out of her pocket.

"You did your best," G growled. "I... wasn't clear. Asking for help."

"Megan was the reason I broke out of my idiotic indecision," Watson said.

Megan was transfixed by her own name.

"You're both good people," G said. "Great people. At least you two came out of this mess together."

"It doesn't have to be just the two of us," Watson said. "We've had this conversation before."

G laughed. "I saw Vivian a few days ago. She said you'd brought Megan to Death's place." She used the British pronunciation of Watson's sister's name. "Guess it's serious."

Watson sighed audibly. "Not any more serious than I ever was with you, and you know it."

"Yeah," G said quietly. "I guess I do. But this is what I mean. I'm so... angry. I'm unreasonable about everything."

"We'll take care of the cats," Watson said in tones one might use to soothe a wild animal. "Say goodbye to them before you go?"

"I... yeah. Yeah, I'll be by," G said.

Megan finished fumbling for the proper key on her keychain and promptly dropped the whole bunch of keys on the floor in a clatter. G descended the stairs as Megan was stooping to retrieve them, balanced precariously on her crutches.

"Hey," Megan said helplessly from her ridiculous position.

G smiled, showing new lines cut into her rugged features. Her red hair was newly shorn into a nearly military buzzcut that was starting to show some grizzle at the temples. She bent, scooped up the keys, and handed them to Megan. "Hey," she said. "I, uh, I wanted to let you know I'm... going away for a while. To Europe. For work."

Megan nodded. She spotted Watson at the top of the stairs and said, "Cool. That's cool. I'd need a change too. And for work, that's great. Is it one of the, uh, lizard folks?"

G grimaced. "Yeah," she said. Then she reached out and dragged her knuckles lightly down Megan's arm. "I never got a chance to thank you."

Megan clamped down on the strained, nervous laugh that was trying to burst out. She smiled -- she hoped she smiled -- and shrugged instead. "I didn't do anything. Ira and Suzanne did it all, you know."

"You tried," G said. "That counts for more than I can say." She flashed a last smile, though this one didn't reach her eyes, and nearly bolted out the front door.

Megan looked after her for a long moment, feeling a wrench of muscles somewhere in the vicinity of her throat. She looked up the stairs when G was out of sight, and Watson nodded.

"See you in a few," Watson said, then turned and trotted up the stairs.


Note from the Author:

First ep of 2012!

I'll be posting on a bit of an accelerated schedule over the next several weeks; you find out why soon enough. In any case, I hope you'll enjoy getting more than one episode a week!

And remember, if you've ever wanted a Team Simon t-shirt (or tank top, or mug, or water bottle), just check out Wonder City Wonders, my new store at Cafe Press. And if there's an item you'd like to get either of the existing designs on that's not in the store, let me know, I'll see if I can get it in there.

Please remember to vote for WCS!

Date: 2012-01-04 04:04 pm (UTC)
kore: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kore
Aww, G. Man.


Date: 2012-01-06 01:42 am (UTC)
heavenscalyx: (Default)
From: [personal profile] heavenscalyx
New ep tomorrow!

Date: 2012-01-06 02:02 am (UTC)
kore: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kore

Date: 2012-01-06 12:52 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Well I found this about three days ago and went murderer on my social life...

Excuse me while I go try and find words to describe how amazing this all is...



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