“The New Girl”
Jane unfolded her easel and placed it in the corner of her room, and then put a blank canvas on it. She stepped back and surveyed the room, feeling a little strange to see a completely clean bedroom and realize it was hers.
“It’ll get that lived in look soon enough,” she said quietly. Chuckling to herself, she left the room and walked down the hallway to her brother’s room.
“Hey,” Trent said, noticing her standing in the doorway.
“Hey,” she answered. “Trent, did we do the right thing?”
Trent put down the box he was carrying and sat down on the edge of his bed. “I hope so, Janey. It felt like the right thing to do at the time, and it still does.”
Jane walked into the room and sat on the bed next to Trent. “We’ve still got each other, Trent. Siblings to the death.”
“Siblings to the death,” Trent replied with a crooked grin.
“What made you decide?” she asked.
“I dunno,” Trent looked thoughtful. “I just woke up one day and looked around. Like, really looked around. My life was going nowhere, Jane.”
“You had the band.”
“The band was going nowhere.” Trent scratched the back of his head. “I miss the guys, but honestly I always knew we weren’t gonna make it. It was fun while it lasted, though.”
“Yeah,” Jane said wistfully. “I’m glad you let me come with you.”
“Me too,” Trent said. “I still can’t believe Mom and Dad, though. I showed them your emancipation papers and they just signed them without even reading. They don’t care.”
“They do care,” Jane said gently, “they just don’t show it like most parents do.”
“I guess,” Trent said with a sigh. “Look, I’m gonna run down to Guitar Planet so I can fill out my paperwork and get my shirts and stuff. You wanna come with?”
“Nah,” Jane said and stood. “I’m gonna walk down to the Stop ‘n’ Rob and get a slushie to celebrate the new house. Maybe pick up some groceries and cook dinner when I get back.”
A few minutes later, Trent locked the front door and the siblings parted ways to attend their errands. Jane waved as Trent’s car vanished down the street, and then she began ambling along towards the convenience store. As she walked she took in the vivid blue of the sky and the brighter sun. Definitely an improvement over dreary New England.
She stopped in the parking lot of the store to watch what she surmised was some sort of native ritual. Two boys were sitting on the sidewalk with a jar of pickled peppers, taking turns eating them. One boy would eat a pepper and scream in pain while the other laughed, then the second boy would eat and scream while the first laughed.
“Hey guys,” Jane said. “Why eat the peppers if they’re so hot they make you scream?”
“Because it’s cool,” the first boy said. Jane quirked an eyebrow at him, taking in his disheveled appearance. His brown hair was cut in a mullet, and he wore stained shorts and a faded t-shirt with the AC/DC logo on it.
“Yeah! Cool!” the second boy chimed in. This boy had an unruly mop of blond, curly hair which looked unwashed. He also wore stained shorts and a faded t-shirt, his being a Metallica t-shirt.
“Uh-huh,” Jane said, pulling a small sketch pad and pencil out of her back pocket. “You guys mind sitting still a minute? I have to show this to my brother.”
“Are you an artist?” the brown haired boy asked.
“Yup,” Jane answered, drawing quickly.
“Cool,” he said, then elbowed the second boy, “artists are sluts. We’re gonna score.”
Jane slowly looked up over the top of her pad in shock. “Excuse me?”
“You wanna go back to our place, or do it in the parking lot?” the first boy asked.
“The only thing I’m gonna do is kick you right in the balls!” Jane shouted, lashing out with one of her clunky boots. The brown haired boy made a high pitched squeal of pain and fell over. The blond boy stared at his friend and laughed.
“Get the hell out of here or you’re next!”
Still chuckling, the blond boy grabbed his friend by the arm and helped him stagger off across the parking lot.
“What the hell is wrong with those two?” Jane asked.
“I’ve been wondering that for years,” a girl answered in a dry, faintly amused voice. “I still haven’t figured it out.”
Startled, Jane turned and looked for the source of the voice. A short brunette in a black leather jacket and red skirt was leaning against the wall of the store. She stood in the shade provided by the large ice box, and was smirking slightly at Jane.
“You know those guys?” Jane asked.
“Yeah,” the girl shrugged, “they’re better to hang out with than most of the other people at school. Sadly.”
“Wow.” Jane stepped forward and stuck her hand out. “Well, you’re trading up. I’m Jane Lane.”
“Daria,” the girl said, taking Jane’s hand and shaking, “Daria Morgendorffer.”
Disclaimers: Stereo Hifi font is ©1997 by Cathy Davies. This story based on characters and situations created by Glenn Eichler and Susie Lewis. The Daria TV show is a trademark of MTV Networks, a division of Viacom International Inc. and is referenced here without permission, and without profit. Original characters and situations created by the author are under (K) – all rights reversed. Hail Eris.
Author: the NightGoblyn