Something Someone Radiance, episode 6

I think Alycia is worried about the team. I think she wants to know what we’re doing, who’s the leader, and how we’re going to get stuff done, and it matters. But I think it matters because she’s worried there won’t be a team.

Leo’s conditions for parole were “don’t fuck up”, basically. He hadn’t even done anything wrong - I mean, making Otto and Pneuma probably broke some law somewhere, but he wasn’t using us to rob banks, you know?

Alycia did some real, real shit. I have to imagine they made her a much stricter deal. I think that means “be on the team”. I think with no team, there’s no deal. And that scares her. It would scare me.

I worry about Adam. I think he’s at a breaking point with his family and his life. I mean, what kind of pressure do you have to be under to rewrite reality, just because people are coming to your house? I think he’s going to give up something. The family or the team. I think it’s going to be the team.

I worry about Harry. He’s got pressure too, and there’s the fight or flight response to stress like that. Either strike back, or run. And if a speedster is good at anything, it’s running. But I think he’s too good a person to just give up, too. So?

If it was just Charlotte and Alycia and me, what would the Menagerie be?

I think the Menagerie is the same thing it’s always been.

Our team is the place where troubled kids come to find themselves.

Leo realized he can have friends again. Jason realized he can be a good guy. Harry realized he’s a hero no matter what his parents do. Adam, perhaps, realized he’s not quite the hero he wants to be. Charlotte realized that being alone sucks. Alycia realized that there’s forgiveness for anyone who searches for it.

What have I realized?

Or is that why I’m still on the team? Because I haven’t?

Anyway, here’s what’s funny!

  • I talked to Alycia about my relationship situation.
  • The last time we had this talk, she was all “Imma find you a boyfriend”.
  • This time, having heard more of the difficulties I’m facing, her solution is literally “booty call with your ex and his fiance”. Jesus.
  • I mean, imagine her face if I told her Aria had suggested I try to get with her and Jason. That’d be classic, for the 15 seconds it took her to recover from sputtering and shout at me.
  • So basically I’m pretty sure I don’t have any hope of finding a guy, and even my most supportive friend knows it.
  • I think she’s worried I’m after Jason. I’m not - not because Jason’s not a good guy, but because he’s not interested in me, and he’s happy with Alycia, and all three of us think that’s the best thing in the world for everyone.
  • I’m not after her either, although that would be hilarious. Still, she’s smart, aggressive, and interesting to talk to. If she ever cuts her hair short and starts dressing more butch, I dunnoooooooo.

Here’s what I figured out about this, though, for serious.

My value as a person, as a team member, as anything, doesn’t depend on who I’m dating, or if I’m dating at all. Whether I have a love of my life, or even just a boy I go out with, doesn’t reflect in any way on whether I’m worthy of love.

And Alycia was so kind and sweet for helping remind me of that, every day. She’s come so far so fast, and though I can still be pushy with her personal space sometime. Sorry, 'Lycia!

I mean, even that old guy Lucius was telling me “hey you need someone to care for your needs”. I have so many people doing that! God. Listen to this.

  • Leslie, my roommate. I almost never see her. Every time I do, she’s always so considerate of how I’m doing.
  • Alycia, my other roommate. She went from “you’re not even a person” to “you deserve love”. I think a big chunk of that was Jason, a big chunk was the rest of the team, a lot of it was AEGIS itself being willing to cut her a deal and let her move out of the clink, all that stuff, but I like to think I had a tiny little part in that too.
  • Nono, who’s really in the same boat with me. I don’t think she’s dating anyone right now but she’s amazing and cute and fun and could have anyone she wanted. She deserves so much happiness.
  • Charlotte, who I get to hang out with at the shop and in the glade and stuff. She’s super classy and stylish and whip smart, but she’s cool too.
  • Honestly, the rest of the team, who accepted me without hesitation or question. I love all you guys.
  • Leo. I mean, what else could I say.
  • Otto. You mean things I can’t even say out loud, big guy. You’re just everything.
  • Aria. I never knew I needed a sister until I had one. And I know she feels the same way too.

So we’ll see what happens with the team, I guess. And with all my friends, no matter who or where they are.

Until then, I’ll keep serving coffee and saving the world. Love you all! :mwah:

author: Bill G.


FWIW, Alycia wasn’t suggesting Summer just have sex with Leo and Aria. I mean, if that made her happy, Alycia would probably smile, inwardly roll her eyes, and encourage her to it. She was suggesting a real relationship there, regardless of the many weirdities involved. (Any relationship with Summer is going to be weird in ways, which is part of Summer’s problem and despair, but also means that heaping a few more on doesn’t necessarily make the deal any less viable.)

Also (just to get in Alycia’s head some more), she’s stopped being worried that Summer is after Jason, not in a predatory way at least. She could still imagine that relationship happening if she, Alycia, gave up on him, or went away, or died, or something, but she is willing to take Summer’s word that she’s not pursuing it and all that. Summer is, if nothing else, honest.

She’s certainly not looking at Summer as relationship (physical or romantic) material. Though her response might surprise Summer were Summer to say that Aria had suggested a J/S/A threesome.

Regardless, she’s not cutting her hair. Sorry, Summer fantasies. :slight_smile:

author: *** Dave H.

I and Summer both know what Alycia meant about Aria & Leo, but interpreting the suggestion in a ridiculous way makes rationalizing her rejection of it easier. :slight_smile: She wants reasons not to reverse course on her decision to let those two be happy.

J/S/A and Alysummer/Charadiance are not her thing (for every good reason), and even if she got lonely enough to think about it, she’d never breathe a word of it to either Jason or Alycia - she’s serious about valuing her friendship with them both, and has no interest in making Alycia doubt herself or Jason. So we’ll never know how Alycia would react unless you chose to tell us as her player. :slight_smile:

Summer would probably react badly if J/S/A was proposed to her with any kind of seriousness, for some of the same reasons she’s not into A/S/L: she values her dignity and pride, and would see “hey you can come be happy with us” as intensely demeaning. So Alycia can style her hair how she likes. :slight_smile:

And of course, all that stuff was just the comedy lead-up to what she’s actually serious about: just because the Boyfriend flavor of relationship ice cream is out of stock right at the moment (and that’s because she’s unwilling to go in search of it), there’s several delicious other flavors she’s already enjoying and is grateful for, and in her mind, that’s what matters.

author: Bill G.

Oh, indeed. Alycia’s sometimes not always clear, so I wanted to make sure her intent was. That Summer chose to interpret it that way, la, is perfectly understandable (and quite human). Ditto the rest.

author: *** Dave H.

I guess I can follow all this up with a couple random observations. :slight_smile:

Summer can be physically comfortable with Alycia (making and maintaining contact) because she doesn’t see Alycia in any kind of romantic light. She was careful with her boundaries around Jason (and the first thing she said after he kissed her was calling him out for this). Woe betide the unprepared boyfriend, of course.

Moving away from the usual shipping/relationship issues that hover around these two, I don’t know if Summer knows Alycia has fears about the team breaking up around her, but I think she clearly has reasons to suspect it. I don’t know if Adam and Harry making their respective decisions will set this off again, but part of writing this was seeing if Summer was ready to help Alycia through it (should she bring the issue to her).

author: Bill G.

I can see a bit more confident/sharper-edged Summer being very … Hobbesean. :slight_smile:

Fear of team break up and change was going to be bigger part of the Popcorn discussion, but didn’t quite happen as expected. Alycia has expressed her concerns to Summer before worries re AEGIS and her membership on the team (it came up in the Parker/respect discussion), so her being worried about the team breaking up is not a difficult deduction for anyone who’s paying attention to her.

author: *** Dave H.