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The Toybox

people for the conservation of limited amounts of indignation


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in which i'm in a fascinatingly good mood here
children of dune - leto 1
seperis
The number system went into effect today. Prepared for full-out comedy, with a touch of melodrama, considering where I work.

But really, this is hysterical.

I've explained my lucky, lucky position is the window directly in front of the door. So everyone always, always, *always* comes up to my window and hangs out for questions. Ignore the fact there are three open windows usually. I'm like Cheers or The Godfather or something. Though I don't know their names and professionally, I cannot ask for anything. Stupid ethics.

Anyway, in a fit of brilliance, Supervisor E (not my direct supervisor, but the one that spends the most time with us), upon deciding that yes, we at the front might actually know what we are talking about when we say the entire line-thing isn't working, forked up and instituted a number thingie. You know, a big thingermabob with numbers you pull out, and a happy little screen where the numbers show up. There are even buttons to play with!

Yes, I did play with them. Leave me alone.

Anyway, to achieve this, one of the two doors on my window had to be removed, giving it that trashy feel that we all know and love. Grr. But you know, sacrifices MUST be made. So I am Greeting Girl, who entices clients toward her to direct traffic. I am, in fact, a glorified and talking version of Expedia. Applications to that window. Appointments to that one. Take a number. Go cats go!

Whoops, my inner cheerleader got a second there. Must smash.

Annnyway.

Super E made the announcement and I watched the confused expressions on everyone's faces. Liken unto Solomon, I sorted those buggers out by type and sent them on their way with a tiny piece of paper that decided their positions in the Great Scheme of Things. It was endlessly amusing.

What I can't often share is the sheer amount of melodrama that happens on a daily basis, but man, it just makes you realize that soap operas totally do not have a monopoly on bad acting. Because honestly? I'm probably not going to believe your pleas of desperate destitution when...

One...you drive a 2003 car. If the payments would be half my salary? I'm going to laugh at you. Deal with it.

Two...anytime the discussion turns to the fact you can't make your appointment due to your two week vacation in Hawaii. No, really, this is comedy gold, honey.

I'm aware there could be highly extenuating circumstances that could lead you to doing these things and still being destitute, but my imagination may not be that good to figure them out, 'kay? So stop yelling at me.

*grins*

Customer Care

AnnoyingClient called. He sounded whiney and I answered his question and got off the phone with him. He had a distinctive voice, so surprise surprise, when he called back in the afternoon, I recognized him immediately.

I asked him waht he wanted.



"I would like to talk to Jennifer and B's supervisor."

Oh, thinks jenn, settling down. Let's see.

"About?"

"I'd like to file a complaint."

*jenn grins*

"What happened?"

*whine* "B was mean to me!" *drama* "Jennifer lied to me!"

"Those bitches!" I consoled. "You know, I can take this complaint myself. But, the supervisors are (name) and (name) and here are their phone numbers right to their offices! What else do you need?"

This time around, he actually gave me the information I needed to figure out what he actually wanted, in between whines about how unfair the world was. There were a lot of those.

"You've been a huge help," he gushes. "I never would have figured out what to do! What's your name?"

*beat*

"Jennifer."

*silence*

"Um."

*grins*

"See ya."

*hang up*

Okay, so I can be petty. And melodramatic. And it made my entire afternoon worthwhile. I have never denied my rightful place among the petty drama queens.

*sighs blissfully* Oh yeah, that was good for me.

We worked an hour overtime. I talked to the PM, who is the supervisor of an entire flock of supervisors, and I still find it vaguely disconcerting that he recognizes me and actully noticed that I wasn't at the conference yesterday. His wife and my mom work together, but as far as I can tell, he's never met my mom (one of the maybe ten people in the agency who haven't, Jesus, it's like being in high school after an older sister or something). He tends to make me want to be very briliant, like Super E does. It's a strange reaction.

*sighs* I reallly am a whore for approval. Just a nod and smile does it for me these days.

I love my job, have I mentioned that yet?

Yes, I am the Queen of both melodrama and boredom. I never promised anyone I'd be interesting. And if I did? I was totally lying.



Spam

I'm beginning to miss the endearing tastelessness of "See Girlz With Barnyard Anamals!", as in lieu of that, I'm getting tons of that idiotic virus. Raise your hands--how many of us are dumb enough to open attachments from anyone we don't know? Hell, I don't open attachments from people I *do* know unless I get an AIM confirmation of contents first. So really. Gah.

Fandom

I settled down on an idea I ran by jaymalea for a QaF fic. It sucks, but then again, my first stories usually do. I'm trying to get a voice for the characters, but I'm running into my biggest roadblock--I write as I read.

I've moaned about this before--months of stalking Te lead to my current adoration for the third person limited, single pov. Present tense, even. It's not something I want to get away from either. I like it, and it makes me happy. And the fact that some people really hate it only makes it that much more attractive.

QaF fandom is past tense, first person, or mult-pov, still first person, with a leavening of thirds around, but nothing, and I repeat this, nothing like anyone in SV. I don't really like writing first person unless the story actually requires it, which for me, some did, but it's not my default and never has been. But again--write as I read, and I'm reading a LOT of first person, which means, when I start writing, I am literally flipping switches between my default and what I've most recently been exposed to. It's an effort either way, to be honest--the sheer amount of first person Justin POV erodes my third badly. But--I just can't write him like that. Hence, I get stuck.

This is an Ungood Thing. So shoot me for being easily led.

Anyway, I thought I'd toss a snippet out and see if it feels as weird as I think it does. Set post 3-10 or roundbouts, but don't chisel that in stone or anything.



He's a kid.

Michael's seen it. Eats cheerios in front of the television on Saturday mornings, still in sweatpants and t-shirt, spilling milk on expensive leather and wiping it absently with the edge of a worn blanket that he has to have had since childhood. Wears headphones and lip-synchs when he's alone in the loft, sliding across the hardwood floor in clean socks and no shirt. Still watches MTV and sleeps in an abandoned sprawl when he's alone in bed.

Michael knows. He's a kid, dressed in college standard jeans and a t-shirt, worn coat wrapped around him, chewing on the eraser of a pencil and making faces at his sketchbook like it might react if he makes just the right one.

A kid, who looks up at him with clear blue eyes that don't seem like they can keep any secrets at all. The fall of long blond hair only makes it more obvious. "Thanks for going with this cover, Michael."

Michael nods from behind a pile of unsorted comics, trying to fix his attention on the mundanities of inventory lists and projected earnings. Nothing's fixing in place.

"You're here early." Not an accusation or a complaint. He thinks.

From the corner of his eye, he sees Justin shrug. "Early night."

Not at the loft, then. Michael takes another stack from the box, riffling through it, barely comprehending what he's seeing. He thinks he can feel Justin looking at him, but every time he turns, Justin's absorbed in their second issue, mouth moving silently over the words like he's living the moment with the character.

"Everything okay?" He shouldn't ask, shouldn't even care, but if it affects Brian, Michael wants to know.

"Great." Justin turns a page idly, playing with the edge of his coat with his other hand. "This'll sell well."

They can only hope.

The silence stretches--the expectant kind that can never last very long, it's too thick. Too hard to deal with, screwing with concentration, and Michael gives up, turning around to face Justin on his stool. A kid, he thinks, watching Justin yawn, open mouthed and rubbing his eyes with one fisted hand. A pretty kid with clear blue eyes and a brilliant smile, wrapping half the world around his finger, and he's got to know that by now. It all comes too easily for him, and Michael doesn't think he resents it. He doesn't really try to think about it at all.

"Something on your mind?" Justin can be subtle when he wants to be, but the restlessness is a dead giveaway. He's known the kid almost three years, and it's all telegraphed in every too-fast, stuttered movement.

Justin pauses, eyes flickering to Michael briefly, then slips the comic closed with a finality that tells him that whatever's on Justin's mind, it's not something he's looking forward to saying. Complaint about Brian? Not likely, not to Michael. Something with the comic? Possible. Michael settles back against the counter and watches Justin lean back on the stool, feet kicking absently. A kid's nervous energy and uncertainty, but when Justin looks at him, he remembers why he stopped thinking of Justin as a kid a long time ago.

Oh, he plays the part all right, innocent smiles and uninhibited laughter, and it's all surface glitter, hiding everything beneath. What, Michael's not sure of, but he's seen the flashes too often to ignore.

"I wanted to talk to you about something."

Michael nods slowly, letting Justin take his time. It won't be something he likes, he knows that already. But what it *is* he's not sure of either.

"You've been acting weird since Brian and I got back together." Michael blinks a little, watching Justin shift, kicking his heels into the stool's legs. "You okay with it?"

Does it matter? A cold day and slivers of pain, the shock of being hit. No, it doesn't.

"I'm fine." It's not a lie.

"You think he shouldn't have." The coolly assessing voice makes Michael look up, but Justin's still Justin, watching him without any expression at all. Michael's not going to lie.

"No, I don't."

Justin nods, eyes flicking downward. "Have you talked to him about it?"

Now that's a stupid question. "Not really." Only once. Fruitless conversation. Circles, because when Brian's not interested in talking, it doesn't happen.

And what could he say? Repeat the litany in his head. It's a mistake, Brian. He's going to fuck you over, Brian. He's too young, Brian. Why him, Brian? Justin, who didn't know him, understand him, not like Michael did. Justin, who expected too much too fast, expected some things that couldn't happen at all.

"Do you care?"


Recs

jaymalea recced this snippet to make me all giggly. It worked.

B/J snippet. Heh. I want the rest of it now. Now now now.

Inspiration by Circe. Heh. Okay, that was cute. And double first persons that I really enjoyed reading. Much funness. And I'm a sucker for jealousy, 'kay?

Good mood back. I am so not going to worry how long it's going to last.


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Oh yeah, that was good for me.

Bwahahahaha!

Re the fic - I'm prolly just being dense, but I can't tell who spoke the last line. Other than that I enjoyed it.

Michael did. I forget to add the thing to tell who said what.

*grins* Yep, I'm evil with clients sometimes. *sighs sadly* Evil, evil, evil.

This snippet is fucking awesome. Please write more. I'm begging you.

Keep begging. It works. If we both do it, and plead and promise pretty presents; she'll do pretty things to the pretty boys. And her pretty things are pretty awesome.

*sticks out tongue* You're enjoying this too much.

And I still owe you massage fic. Hmm.

*mulls*

*smiles slowly*

Consdiering that I've just appointed myself your number one stalker--you have that fic on a site! YES THANK YOU GOD.

*very happy*

*grins* Also noted you're from Austin. North or south? I work north, so I'm just being nosey and annoying.

*waves* Good ficness happening. GOOD FIC. You know, more would be good.

....

Annnnytime now.

Consdiering that I've just appointed myself your number one stalker--you have that fic on a site! YES THANK YOU GOD.

Oh, yay, I'm glad you're enjoying it!

*grins* Also noted you're from Austin. North or south? I work north, so I'm just being nosey and annoying.

Live and work south. Haven't been north since dinosaur times.

*waves* Good ficness happening. GOOD FIC. You know, more would be good.

Ooh, thank you thank you. I think Laura put up a couple more chapters today, actually. And there should be more tomorrow. And speaking of more...more of yours would also be good. Very very good.


Yeah! WooHoo! Just got back from my beach/work trip. Checked in here first thing and you've posted!!!!! Can you tell I'm happy?

*laughs* Always glad to please.

And loving your icon. It's just sooo soothing to look at.

Meant to comment about your tooth adventures, but here's my belated sympathy.
Your commentary on work is very amusing. Thanks for sharing.

Aww, thanks. It scares me that my teeth have such a prominent place in my anecdotes these days.

*grins* What is work but to poke fun at?

Jennish QAF fic! My cup runneth over! It's nice to see good Michael characterisation (in both a realism and in a non-evil sense) in B/J fic. The snippet was great, I hope you can/do carry it on.

*hugs* You're sweet. Thanks!

I'm mulling Michael. I got reactive after reading another Evil!Psychotic!Michael fic. *blinks slowly* Never ceases to make me stare and re-read, just to be sure I actually read what I read. LIke really, really bad crack.

*waves* Any recs by any chance? *hopeful*

Just after you logged off, found a story that I think you'll like. It's a 5 things that didn't happen... All In The Timing by Rei.

Hey, I actually found a good one! It does have one weapon metaphor, but it's good despite that (and there's no sharpness involved).
http://www.qaf-fic.com/atp/modules.php?op=modload&name=Fanfiction&file=index&options=DisplayStory&storyid=4350
Is there a better way to put a link in?

Heya Jenn.

Well, since you're in a total Brian/Justin mood, I just figured I'd forward on two B/J vids that a friend recced to me. Keep Me with lots of kissing and Fast As You Can which ends a little abruptly, but work very well for the dynamic between the two.

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