This is my first attempt at fanfic. I've currently found myself with a lot of extra time on my hands so I thought I'd fill it with something moderately productive. And why not make sure its full of some of my all time favorite characters. Clearly I do not own anything in connection with MSCL. I watched the show when it first aired and they've been a part of my life ever since.
I remember there always being a ton of parallels in the episodes and I'd like to try and work that into this story. If it gets too kitschy or overbearing please let me know. I have a brief sketch of how I want this story to pan out, but until I get my footing you might have to wade through quite a bit of expo and piles of details. But thanks for reading. Let me know what you think.
One minute she was nothing, completely unaware of even being, and the next she could feel herself being enveloped in a warm pale light. Fearing that any movement would cause the perfectness of this comfort to end, she stayed all movements and kept completely still. Consciously editing her breathing, she hoped to slow the passing of time. Yet seconds build and minutes fade, and in the next moment the dreadful buzz of her alarm clock started to wale as it glared at her from the bed stand. Rise and shine. Time to start your day Angela Chase. It's Thursday. You sort of like Thursdays, remember? She thought as she willed herself to open her eyes and greet early May morning. As she hesitantly parted her eyelids, she was drowned in the soft white light of the 6 A.M. sun. The east facing window was doubling as an alarm clock and negating any chance she had at drifting back off to dreamland. Although she had to admit she did enjoy waking up by means of solar power, rather than the nerve jarring awakening that came from the alarm clock.
As Angela groggily reached to her left and fumbled among the items on her bed stand, she finally felt the familiar and despised shape of the alarm clock and beat it into submission. Rolling back over, she found herself face to face with a very familiar pair of blue eyes.
"Morning Indi. Ready to start our day?" She lovingly scratched behind his right ear that was always flopped over. Angela sat up and curled her knees into her chest. Having never been a morning person, she felt the need to gather herself before planting her feet on the hardwood and admitting defeat to the morning. While she stood and stretched the cramped muscles of her shoulders her Australian Sheppard, Indiana, made a mad dash for the front door of the apartment. He parked himself directly in front of the hook which held the green leash – the means to his moderated freedom of the great outdoors. While Indiana waited patiently, Angela rummaged through what were once neat stacks of clothes she had deposited next to her closet last night after her trip to the LaundrOmat and which were now all in disarray. Jeans... jeans.. I know I washed them yesterday. They've got to be folded up here somewhere. Unless that lady who was staring a little too fondly at my fabric soften swiped 'em while I wasn't looking. SCORE. Got 'em. Angela managed an awkward hop across her bedroom as she pulled her favorite faded denim jeans on. She didn't mind that the bottoms were beyond frayed, or that the material on the hips was starting to wear thin, not even the numerous holes ranging from pin to knee sized. She had tucked away many memories in the pockets of these jeans, and even on an early morning walk with the dog they were a simple comfort.
Angela wandered into the bathroom to do a superficial teeth brushing incase she ran into anyone while outside. While making her way around the mismatched dining set, she tossed her disorderly dirty light brown hair up into a mess of a bun. Shuffling her feet toward the door she tapped the brew button on her coffee pot, which being at least moderately on top of things she had set up with a fresh filter and grounds last night. Slipping into a well worn pair of grey Vans, she hooked Indi's leash to the collar and they both treaded lightly down the double flight of stairs leading the main door of her small five unit apartment building. There were countless small bits of charm about this apartment that Angela loved, like the original hardwood floors with their scratches and gouges from years of wear and tear, to the built in book shelves that formed the walkway between her living room and kitchen. But, one of its most obvious and the convenient perks had to be its prime location directly across from her favorite park. Today the Dunsley Park did not disappoint. The Magnolia trees which lined the preliminary paths were just starting to bud. Angela loved the majestic beauty of these trees, but could never classify them as one of her true favorites due to how rapidly their blossoms fade. One moment they are huge rosy, white colored trees and the next they no longer noteworthy other than the carpet of fallen petals radiating out from the newly barren branches. It's hard to love something that fades so quickly. Yet while they while they lasted, Angela made a point of wandering among them, with Indi in tow. The two eventually made their way back to the apartment to be greeted by the luxuriant scent of fresh brewed dark roast coffee.
Fighting the urge to poor a cup and lose herself in quiet morning hours, Angela jumped into the shower. She ran through the same routine every morning. Take the dog for a walk, shower, cup of coffee (sometimes she allowed herself toast and a morning publication if she happened to wake up early enough, which was rare), dry hair, clothes, brush teeth, and out the door. Never in any varying order; she was convinced that it might alter her entire day if the beginning was skewed. The regularity of it had become another small comfort for her. She didn't have control over much, but she damned sure could determine if she drank her coffee or took her shower first. After she had fussed with her hair enough to be satisfactory, which was never much more than running a blow dryer through the choppy layers, Angela rubbed on some tinted moisturizer and called it good. Spending time painting your face never made any sense to her and because of this the twenty four year old woman who faced her in the mirror bore a striking resemblance to her teenage self. Slipping into a more recent and better kept pair of jeans and a simple white t-shirt, Angela was ready to head out the door. But as her hand grazed the door knob she heard a slight whimper from the kitchen, looked up to see Indiana seated patiently once again next to his food dish. In her morning trance she had almost forgotten to give him fresh water and kibble for the day. She was clearly out of it if a dog had more sense of priorities than she did at the moment. Filling both bowls, she leaned down to scratch behind his ears once more before leaving.
She freed her blue cruiser Huffy from the bike rack behind her building and pedaled her way to work at a pace she deemed worthy of the 7 A.M. time frame. Pulling up into the parking lot behind McWindle's Floral, Angela dismounted and wheeled her bicycle into the storage room.
"It's about damn time your pretty little face showed up," a voice called out from the front region of the store. The owner of the voice wasn't visible due to a large arrangement of Calla Lilies, which she was positioning on a front facing table. Angela knew the snide comment could have only come from Charlotte, one of her favorite co-workers and closest friend in the city.
"Yeah, yeah. Sorry I'm a few minutes late. I didn't really see anyone beating down the door to get in here. And as a matter of fact it seems like you have everything pretty well under control. So if it's all the same to you, I'm just going to bike back home and…" she was cut off mid-sentence.
"Oh like hell you are! We have so many arrangements to mock up today. There were six messages on the machine for quick fire funeral arrangements that need to be done, like yesterday. Marjorie also took in two wedding bouquets for this weekend… And Mother's Day is right around the corner. Plus, because you seem to be so sadistic and are driven to make my life a living hell, you took the entirety of next week off. Meaning I'll be stuck working out all of these designs with just Erin. I might have to drag the girl who runs the resister, who I swear only has half a brain… back here to help. UGGHH!" Charlotte had meandered back to where I was standing while she was ranting. For an emphatic ending to her tirade, she gave Angela a friendly punch in the shoulder. "I mean, so are you getting excited? You like haven't taken vacation at all in the two years we've worked together. I bet you're stoked to get out of this wretched city for a bit, even if it does mean hopping the train for an even more crowded and chaotic one. You'll probably like lose yourself there or get inspired or find your soul mate and vow never to return here. Leaving me completely stranded. Thanks a lot."
Charlotte is the only person I know who rambles, or carries on a one sided conversation more fluidly than I do. She has already plotted out my fate, when I haven't even packed yet. And, it isn't even really that big of a deal. It's not like I am skipping town to travel the world and find the meaning of life. I am taking the train into Chicago for a few days. There are some faces there that I am long overdue in seeing. It's been three years since I graduated from Northeastern Illinois University. Most of my friends from college still call the city home. Not to mention the handful of people who I suffered through the unbearable years of high school with are living in Chicago as well. Some I'm looking forward to seeing more than others... I'm most excited to spend time with Danielle, my younger sister moved there after high school to pursue culinary training. It's still weird to think that after spending our younger years constantly bickering with each other, we became inseparable during the year after my undergrad, before I decided to move away and start anew. It was hard to leave her, but I sometimes I just have to make such a drastic change that it alters my entire perspective. That's what I was faced with two years ago, and I can feel myself on the brink of something similar yet again.
Angela had completely zoned out through another one of Char's rants. She nodded in agreement and walked to the order board to get started. She made sure to grab all of the forms for wedding arrangements. With her current state of mind, being immersed in Carnations and Peace Lilies for funerals just wasn't how she wanted to spend her last day at work before leaving. After her shift at the floral shop was over, Angela wheeled her bicycle from the storage room and headed back for her apartment to pack for the week ahead.
Why do I feel so stagnant all of a sudden? The floral shop is exactly what I wanted in a job. It allows me a kind of creativity that I wouldn't have the freedom of accessing if I was still working as a linguistic research assistant. Maybe I do just need a change of scenery for a few days… hopefully that will light a fire under me.
As she abandoned the bike path and started traversing the side streets and alleys to make her route home a little quicker, Angela slowed and then came to a stop outside of the drugstore on her block. She remembered that her toothpaste was getting annoyingly low and she hated having to flatten the tube just to brush her teeth every morning. The florescent lights and speckled white tiles within the store made Angela feel washed out, so she hurried herself through the various aisles grabbing whatever other toiletries she thought she might also be low on. While skimming the shampoo and hair styling product section, Angela was confronted by a wall of faces and assuming eyes staring out at her from the rows of hair color. She had never noticed how creepy it was to have so many different faces, all positioned and style relatively the same way arranged by hair color. And even worse, she felt like these strangers were judging her. She turned her back on the eyes and continued to search for a shampoo that was on sale. When she was steps from the register, still dwelling on those boxes of hair color, she was struck by a conversation she had had years ago…
"I didn't say it looked bad. Just that it is the definitive physical characteristic of your normality," Rayanne avoided Angela's inquisitive stare as she rummaged through the pits of her oversized purse for some type of candy to suck on.
"Yeah. But you just said, like seconds ago, that my hair is holding me back. Clearly that means that it doesn't look good, and as far as I know the most likely alternative other than good, is like, bad. Uggh. Maybe I'll have my mom schedule me an appointment to get it cut tomorrow." Being faced with this type of dilemma for some sort of necessary change was not Angela's specialty. Maybe she could just leave the decision in the hands of the hair stylist and hope for the best.
"No. A cut isn't going to make any difference. Unless you shave it…. no that won't work either. The last thing we want is for Catalano to run from you in terror. We just need to find way to make sure you are easily noticeable in case you two ever like find yourselves in mixed company. I GOT IT! Let's dye it red! BRIGHT RED! It's sultry and sophisticated and bold. Just the thing to catch Catalano's eye if he ever takes a time out from using that Visine." Rayanne was an unlikely genius.
It was a simple yet dramatic solution to the rut her teenage life had gotten stuck in. Perhaps history needed to repeat itself in order for her current life to get back in to the forward momentum she yearned for. Either way she felt it was worth a shot, and if Rayanne was anywhere within range to give her opinion, Angela was sure she would have agreed with this decision whole heartedly. Within minutes Angela was back on her bike, with a box of Copper Pot hair dye in her wire basket; unfortunately Crimson Glow had fallen out of style years ago.
It was a forceful and abrupt tremor that drew Jordan into consciousness. Either we are on the roughest stretch of high way in the continental United States or Roger just drove over an entire heard of … something. Without opening his yes Jordan could feel the walls of his bunk bed pressing against him. He was beginning to regret the agreement that whoever brought a ladyfriend back to the bus for the night got dibs on the larger double bunk. Considering that out of his four band mates he was rarely the one doing so meant that he ended up in cramped quarters more often than not. Jordan tried to relax and coerce his way back in to the world of dreams he was so violently thrown from moments ago. But to no avail, he could feel his body starting to wake and shake all ties to sleep. In fact the only thing that lingered was the haunting pair of soft green eyes he could still see and feel watching him. They followed him everywhere; a ghost of past lives. The eyes were a contradiction. Jordan felt they understood him yet couldn't accept him as he was. Like so many other nights he shook his head to try and chase the image of the green eyes from his vision.
Having given up on falling back asleep any time in the immediate future Jordan decided to try and find some sort of distraction until sleep returned or someone else woke up. He stumbled through the foyer of the bus towards the sitting area. Although it was only a few yards, Jordan's current drowsy state and the movements of the bus were impairing his journey. Once he reached the couch he heaved himself on to it. His body was beginning to feel the initial weight of their current tour. They had performed in fifteen different cities in less than three weeks. Jordan was grateful for the opportunity to be able to have a career doing what he loved, and quite honestly the only thing he ever really felt suited to do, but it was exhausting nevertheless. Every night he laid his soul on the stage. Jordan hoped that the people attending any of their shows could feel and understand his dedication and commitment to them. It was an odd thing feeling so connected to thousands of people for such a small moment in time and when he walked off the stage he felt that connection severed until the next performance. In-between gigs on previous the tour Jordan had mitigated his way through intense bouts of loneliness, and this one wasn't shaping up to be much different.
But Jordan wasn't alone, at least not in the physical sense. He was thankful to have three of his closest friends willing to make music and tour with him for the last six years. It was fitting that his best and oldest friend, Shane Jones, was their steadfast drummer. Jordan found it a comfort to know that the driving force in the music they produced came from someone who knew him so well. They connected on an entirely other level when it came to composing. Growing up together and helping each other through various instances of heartbreak, abandonment, and triumph had filtered onto their records. He had met Eli Marx and Chandler Ryller through mutual friends after he had graduated from high school. Eventually, they all started performing and touring together under the name Residue. Jordan had been in a short lived band by this name during high school, but he felt they had never reached their full potential. He liked the different meanings you could decipher from the name and decided to reincarnate it with the current members.
On the coffee table next to the couch Jordan could make out the figure of their tour itinerary. He reached to his left and fumbled for the switch on the lamp. Taking the binder into his lap he began to leaf through the pages examining what he and the rest of the guys had scheduled ahead of them. They were currently en route to Milwaukee and would perform the following night in Madison. The next stop on their tour after that was Chicago. Thankfully they had a free day before and after this concert so he could catch up with a few of his old friends still living in the city. Jordan was also hoping that he'd be able to escape from everything and spend some time by himself before they departed from Chicago. It was always one of his favorite cities to lose himself in. Even though his driver's license stated that his current address was in New York City, he wasn't sure if he could call that city his home. Over the past few years if he wasn't touring he was in various places around the country working to record and produce the band's newest album. It was the greatest endeavor of his twenty six years on this planet. He loved the possibilities of NYC, but he wasn't sure if he could ever put down roots there, regardless if it was now or in the very distant future.
The early morning hour time frame was starting to have a stronger effect on Jordan's ability to focus. He could feel himself fighting to keep his eyes open as he examined all of the logistics for the next few tour stops. Eventually Jordan surrendered to the pursuing slumber. Curled up in the pillows of the bus's couch, Jordan could once again see the soft light of those ghostly green eyes. Now he reveled in them, and hoped they would stay and keep him company until he was ready to wake and face the next day and city that awaited him.