Crash Course

Jill gets a surprise guest? ??? ??????

Jill's Apt., Toronto, ON


"Best quote"

Yeah Yeah Yeahs play over a typical stay-at-home night for Jill Rey, which involves sitting on her soft blue couch with her laptop falling off her lap into an embroidered owl pillow and her black-framed glasses slowly but surely sliding down her nose; a one-woman party, this one. While the singular owner— okay, renter— of the small but neat and well-decorated apartment drifts in and out of dozing, no longer satiated by the stream of articles, social media, and TV provided by the internet, she twitches every now and then. A shift of her shoulder, a twist of lips that still bear the day's lipstick, a grumble as if to fend off the nonexistent entity that seems to tug her from her sporadic napping. Less than half-conscious, she swats a hand at this buzzing nothing until her arm flings all the way to her cubic end table and knocks over a colourful bottle of organic fruit soda.

Jill springs awake, rocketed into a small panic consisting of awkwardly clambering over the arm of the couch and groggily palming everything on the end table to try to catch the bottle until she realizes it was capped the whole time. She sits up just in time to stop her laptop from sliding on the floor and rubs her eye. Even awake, she realizes, there's something slightly odd flitting around in the back of her head; a subtle shift in energy when she squints into her apartment, but nothing has changed: everything is laid out exactly how she wants it, a colourful, Jill-centric Feng Shui oasis.

"Mnnnh," she groans in the tone of a decisive whatever, flopping back against a cushion— but nope, she's just too hyperaware. Too curious. She shoves her laptop aside and — still wrapped up in a blue blanket — wanders to her door to peer suspiciously through the peephole.

And through the peephole Jill will see chaos embodied. In nearly every way.

The head of dark frizzled hair (it has been a rather busy few days— personal grooming isn't at its usual prim and proper place), blue eyes, and stark red lips that meet Jill's gaze likely lack any air of familiarity, yet Amity is here just the same. On her back she wears a very large backpacking backpack— the kind intended for treks through rainforest rather than visits to unknown relatives in Canada. The leather jacket she wears matches the high heeled leather boots that don her feet. A short denim skirt, with a pair of burgundy leggings flare out underneath her.

Aside from the backpack at the hair, Amity looks normal-ish. And she knows it. Which may be why her finger sticks out and pushes the doorbell again. Clearly, any sane person, particularly one she's related to, would open the door…

Jill settles her blanket around her shoulders like the world's laziest superhero cape and narrows her eyes. The woman outside her door is unfamiliar in a way that seems like it should be otherwise, but nothing clicks … except the lock, which Jill starts to turn almost before she realizes it. The energy repels with its chaos as much as it draws her in.

First, the door is opened just enough for the resident's eyes to flash through it, squinting and skeptical, borderline cantankerous on an otherwise smooth face; by the time it's opened to a more polite range, however, Jill's expression is simply one of searching for the apparent stranger's purpose. The quintessential do I know you and what are you doing here? stare. It examines the backpack particularly. "Hiiii…?"

The open door draws an altogether warm, and perhaps too-bright, smile to Amity's lips. "Hi! How you doing? Looks like quite the exciting night," there's no question in her tone, despite the nature of her greeting, just a chipper cadence matched by an equally chipper attitude. Jill's hesitation, however, beckons the same from the visitor. "Oh wait. Are you not Jill Rey? Sorry. I get confused with the whole street naming system here— weird force of habit, it's like BAM this is no longer first street. Or maple. Or whatever," she waves a hand flippantly. "Ohmygosh so embarrassing. Have you ever made a mistake like that?! I mean when you went up to the wrong door because you got all turned around topsy turvy… maybe it's time to invest in a new map. I mean, unless you are Jill Rey. In which case.. yay me!"

Jill's confusion escalates along with a sense of self-consciousness now that she's been called out by name while wrapped in a blanket. She shuffles her shoulders under the sleepy blue fabric and stares through her glasses out her door, poised on the edge of answering at least three times, but her unexpected guest keeps talking every time. "Yy— yay, you!" she squeezes out, holding up a corner of her blanket in a half-cheer that crumbles awkwardly after the fact, matching the furrowed look she gives the woman whose name she hasn't pegged, herself. Her smile is polite — it has the potential to be friendly — but freezes on a slant. She's still confused. "I'm Jill Rey… whoooo…" she starts to venture with a curious, heightening pitch in an inadvertent imitation of the bird stitched on her pillows inside, "…whoo're you?"

"Oh good! Lovely. ANd I thought I was lost again. Seriously all the roads look the same. It's not like there's really truly distinctive markers like the old man that sits on the corner all day, you know?" Smile. "Right." She extends her hand for Jill to shake, "Amity. Amity Rey." Pause. "Maybe you've heard of me?" her nose wrinkles expectantly before smoothing out. "My father he's your mother's brother or… someone's brother" her forehead wrinkles, "you know I don't quite remember, but I suppose we can compare notes later. The long and short of it? … well we're cousins. Assuming you're the Jill Rey I'm thinking of. Pretty sure Pops said you lived here…"

"Oh… oh!" Realization, as jumbled as it is, strikes Jill; a long-lost cousin wasn't even in her realm of imagining for this mystery woman on her doorstep. She smiles, big and still lopsided, but brighter, more genuine. "Oh, okay, cool. I think it'd be my father's… brother?" She shakes her head with a toss of bangs; whatever. "Nice to uh— meet?— you— " After a too-long beat, nearly forgetting, she relinquishes part of her blanket and grasps Amity's hand to shake it, a faintly inept gesture when it feels too professional under the circumstances.

A pins-and-needles sensation rockets between the two individuals' hands, a subtle burst of invisible energy. A streetlight on the all-looks-the-same street behind Amity pops off and on.

A coincidence, surely.

"Uh— " Jill stammers over the bit of chaos, "come in I guess— I mean come in— "

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