Title: The Invitation
Author: Girl Who Writes
Feedback: is beloved if you feel so inclined.
Word Count: 1965
Genre: Humour, Drama, Major AU.
Summary: Mimi likes Roger. Roger likes Mimi. But it's definitely not a date.
Notes: Okay, first up I'd like to apologize to everyone who started reading Chapter 9: Secrets and Lies; I wanted to put this chapter first for more development and because I have a story arc for this fic that needs this chapter. Secrets and Lies will be back as Chapter 10 or 11, and is very dramatic. It puts The O.C. to shame
Secondly, I know original characters are as annoying as hell. But because this is an AU, the characters need families, and I tried to make them interesting but still very much 'background noise'.
I hope you enjoy this chapter, I apologize for posting it so much later than I planned, but Reality kicked in. The next update will be as soon as I finish editing the next chapter.
Special Thanks: This challenge was set for me by discoapocalypse as part of speed rent, and it was awesome; it got me thinking and out of my comfort zone. I had a lot of crazy fun writing it :D Thank you so much, and I hope this is what you wanted and that you enjoy it!
Spoilers: Um... say movie and musical, but this is AU and drastically different.
Disclaimer: All recognizable characters are property of the Jonathan Larson Estate. The Marquez and Davis families are my characters.
Gloria Marquez looked up from where she was stacking the breakfast plates into the dishwasher, the sound of yet another argument reaching her ears. Sighing and wiping her hand on a tea towel, Gloria made her way into the lounge room where her eldest and youngest were almost nose to nose, both yelling obscenities at each other.
"Enough!" Gloria yelled over the din. "Tony! Mimi!"
"I am not watching another freaking soap opera!" Tony yelled back at Mimi.
"You watched the basketball all damn week! I want to watch my shows!" Mimi clutched a video tape to her chest.
"I kind of wanna watch Iron Chef," Tristan piped up helpfully from the couch, where he held the remote control. "I mean, come on."
"Shut up," Tony snarled at Tristan. "I am sick of your tweeny shows playing at all hours of the day! Gives me a freakin' headache!"
"I said enough!" Gloria Marquez was a short, round woman, and amongst her clan of tall, skinny children, she could make herself heard. "What on earth is going on here?"
"I taped my shows this week," Mimi began in a plaintive tone than Gloria instantly recognized as her trying to win the argument because she was the baby and the girl. Gloria had caught onto this trick when Mimi was three; her brothers and father had taken much longer to realize their sweet, angelic sister and daughter was manipulating them for all she was worth. "And I just wanted to watch them."
"Antonio?" Gloria turned to her oldest son; Tony was already twenty, still lived at home and spent his days at the technical college while he decided what he wanted to do with his life.
"I come down here, my only day off this week, to watch the basketball and Miss Priss here prances in and starts playing that shit she watches," Tony said. "Ma, please, just buy me a TV and this will all be over."
Gloria sighed and walked forward to smooth Mimi's hair down. "Tony, I'll buy you your own TV when you go off to college – I'll buy you a DVD player when you get into medical school. But not while you sit around all day, okay?" Gloria tilted Mimi's head towards her. "It's 10a.m. on a Saturday; I'm not okay with you sitting inside watching a video. Why don't I give you and Angel a lift to the park?"
Mimi shrugged. "Angel's out with his friends." 'Friends' meaning one Thomas Collins who was slightly more than just Angel's 'friend', but Mimi knew her mother had grown up in a very strict Catholic household and no matter how easy going Gloria was about some things, Mimi wasn't quite sure her thoughts on homosexuality were positive ones.
"What about your friends? You're always talking about them," Gloria prompted. "Mark and Roger and…"
"Maureen," Tristan piped up.
"Joanne," Exodus flopped onto the lounge, "and Collins."
Mimi coloured slightly, knowing her brothers were teasing her about how much she rambled on about her new friends. "They've all got stuff on – dance lessons and soccer games and things. I never get to do any of that stuff."
"Life's tough," Gloria said, plucking the video tape out of Mimi's protective grip. "Okay guys. Tony, your father needs some help in the shop. Tristan…"
"I haven't done anything wrong!"
"You think I didn't hear you antagonizing them? You and Ex can clean your damned room; I don't want to see hide nor hair of either of you until every sock is in the laundry, until every dirty cup, plate and fork is in the dishwasher and every window washed. The vacuum cleaner is in the laundry."
"Now, Mimi." Mimi visibly shank back as her mother's gaze hit her. "Is your room clean?"
"Your homework done?"
"Your chores done?"
"Yes, Mom. Can I watch my video now?"
"I don't believe you." Gloria marched her daughter upstairs to her bedroom at the end of the hallway. It wasn't as disgusting as the room Tristan and Exodus shared by any means; the bedcovers were pulled up, her curtains were open, there were papers and books stacked haphazardly on her desk and clothes thrown randomly around the room.
"I think it could be cleaner," Gloria said, picking up a dress that was draped over Mimi's desk chair and smoothing it. "You and I haven't had a chat about your new school yet, have we?"
"No," Mimi sat on her bed and reached for her teddy bear, a sulky look on her face.
"Daddy and I are happy that you've made new friends." It was almost automatic for Gloria to start picking and up folding the clothes flung around the room, slipping them into Mimi's wardrobe. A plaid skirt, some t shirts, a pair of jeans…
"We spoke to the counselor – don't worry, she spoke to all the transfer students' parents," Gloria reassured as Mimi's eyes widened. "But yes, she is a little concerned. She says you haven't made any friends your own age."
"I turn sixteen in two months. Angel's sixteen," Mimi protested. "So is Maureen."
"But they're all juniors, honey," Gloria shook her head. "You need to try and make friends with some nice girls in your classes, okay?"
"The counselor also mentioned your grades," Gloria picked up a halter neck dress. "She says they're much better than they were when you started, but you need to spend more time doing your homework and studying – she even recommended a nice boy to tutor you if you need help. You know Ex and Tristan will help you if you're having trouble."
"I am working hard, Mom. I spend ages on my homework – my marks don't look great because I started at this school late, not because I'm not working," Mimi sighed. She knew her marks would never been as brilliant as Collins or Joanne's but she did all the assigned work and got decent marks for them.
"Well, why don't you do your homework now? I know you fibbed to me. Get it over and done with now," Gloria shut Mimi's wardrobe. "Then you can have your video back."
Mimi groaned as her mother left the room with her tape; it hadn't been a suggestion.
Mark sighed as he and Roger walked away from the soccer field, both covered in grass and mud stains. They had lost their fourth game this season, continuing their four year losing streak; the team itself was completely hopeless, made up of kids who weren't serious athletes but just wanted to have fun.
It might have been just a little bit more fun if they won, or even tied a game, just once.
"What are you so pissed about?" Roger asked as they began to walk back to Roger's place. "We lost again. So what?"
"The other team's coach told them to stop scoring, Roger. It's kind of humiliating," Mark said dryly. Roger was busy checking messages on his mobile phone to really acknowledge what Mark was saying.
"Whatever. Wanna go to the movies or something?" Roger jammed his phone back in his pocket. "That new pirate ninja film is on at noon."
"Yeah, okay," Mark replied. "Wanna call the others? Maureen likes movies with blood and violence."
"And for our last English essay, you analyzed the love scenes from that really crappy movie," Roger grinned. "No guesses who'd be the woman in yours and Maureen's relationship."
"Oh, fuck off," Mark muttered, his cheeks scarlet; it was no secret that Mark had been crazy about Maureen for years, and Maureen was pretty much the only person in a twenty mile radius who hadn't worked it out.
"Language Mister Cohen," Roger joked as he pulled out his phone again to call the others to see if they wanted to meet up.
"Hello. You've reached the Dumott residence. Hazel and Angel aren't home at the moment, so leave your name, phone number and a little message after the tone, and we'll return your call as soon as we can."
"Angel, its Mimi. You aren't back yet, are you? Damnit. I'm under frelling house arrest because Tony can't damn well move out and go to college. Its 11:30 on a Saturday and I'm doing assignments. I had to wait till Mom went to the bathroom to smuggle the phone in here."
"Mimi! Didn't I tell you to finish your homework!"
"I swear Angel, if you don't rescue me soon, I'm going to fling myself from my bedroom window. You can have all my clothes and stuff. Call me as soon as you get home. Did I say it was Mimi?"
"Okay, Maureen will meet as at the mall at 11:45," Roger said. "Collins and Angel aren't picking up and Joanne's in the city for the weekend with her parents."
"Did you call Mimi?" Mark asked as he grabbed sodas from the fridge in the Davis' kitchen.
"Uh…" Roger looked at his phone again. "Nah. Didn't think she'd be interested."
"You like her," Mark said simply, as if it was widely known.
"She's a goddamned sophomore," Roger retorted.
"I didn't think you went for all that conformist crap," Mark said, quoting Roger directly from what he said around their classmates.
"It'd just be weird if I asked her to come to the movies," Roger shrugged. "She's probably busy anyway."
"You really like her."
"Who does Roger like?" Lindsey, Roger's twelve year old sister bounced into the kitchen, long blonde hair swinging, with an evil grin on her face. "Roger likes a girl!"
"I thought you were going out with that April girl, honey," Roger's mom, Annie, walked in. "Didn't that work out?"
Mark tried to smother his laughter as Roger tried to come up with a quick explanation about his 'friendship' with April.
"So there is another girl?" Annie said lightly. "I didn't think you knew many girls, Roger. Only April and Maureen Johnson."
"Roger's going out with Maureen?" one of Roger's three older brothers appeared in the kitchen. "That's truly fucked up, man. The girl is a crew cut short of becoming a total dyke."
"LUKE!" Annie turned around with a kitchen knife in her hand. "What have I said about the language that comes out of your mouth? Not around your sister! And whatever Maureen Johnson's life choices are, you will not speak of them in such a derogatory manner at all. Am I clear?"
"Mom, chill. I was merely pointing out that if he's going out with Maureen, Roger's finally admitted that he's a total girl," Luke said cheerfully, punching his little brother on the shoulder.
"Its okay, Mom, I know what a dyke is," Lindsey pointed out cheerfully as she pulled a package of cookies from the pantry. "It's what Luke calls girls who won't sleep with him."
Roger and Mark exchanged matching looks before fleeing from the kitchen before Annie Davis could burst a blood vessel at the fact her twelve year old knew more about her older brother's sex life than Annie did.