Title: With An "Uh", And An "Um" (Part 1 of ?)
Author: Kimmie Fandom: Daria Type: long fic, ongoing Rating: PG (so far)
Disclaimer: Daria was not written by me! I only wrote this fic.
Summary: A "What If?" What if Trent moved to Boston after the end of the canon timeline?
Notes: Without realizing it, I actually wrote this and posted it on Daria Fanworks Day. Having been a fan of Daria since the initial series run, and having been familiar with fanfic for the series since 1997 or so, I'm very surprised that I've chosen now to foray into writing for the fandom.

Over the sounds of the slasher flick playing on the TV, Jane Lane heard a peculiar knocking. It seemed to be coming from the front door, but it didn't sound like a hand was doing the knocking. She glanced through the peephole and frowned as she opened the door. "Trent?"

Trent turned slightly so that he could face Jane. "Hey, Janey. Sorry about that. Hands full, so I had to knock with my guitar. It was that or my foot and I'm pretty sure I would have fallen over, so..." He trailed off. "Can I come in?"

Jane stepped back from the doorway. "I guess? Why are you here?"

Trent dropped the duffel bag he was carrying with one hand, then used the free hand to unload several other bags to the floor before carefully putting his guitar down, patting it gently as though to apologize for the earlier abuse. "Um, Wind moved back home."

"Seriously? Why would he do that?" Jane gestured for Trent to join her in the living room where she was quick to turn on the lights and pause the DVD she'd been watching, noticing that the screen paused on a girl who looked a lot like Brittany Taylor.

"Uh, I think he did it because Summer told him he could."

Jane took a seat on the couch and pulled one foot under her. "Sit. Why did Summer think she could tell Wind he could move in?"

"Hmm... I guess because she moved in, too?" Trent sat on the couch and leaned on the arm rest.

Shaking her head, Jane wondered why she seemed to be the only Lane who'd managed to actually move out and stay out for a few years. "So, I'll repeat, why are *you* here?"

"Can I crash here for a bit? I think I need to find a place of my own finally."

Jane bit her lower lip. "I'll have to talk to Daria and Tom."

Trent leaned too far on the arm rest and slipped forward awkwardly. "Tom? I thought they'd broken up. Y'know, for good and stuff."

Jane shrugged. "Well, we're all living in Boston and we're friends. We didn't know anyone else to speak of, so we hung out a lot. One night, we're all at a bar having fun being single and the next night, I'm a third wheel. They've been together since the end of fall semester which was conveniently right before Tom had to find a new place to live."

"So he lives with you guys."

"He and Daria are out on a date now. I think they went to a showing of Rocky Horror Picture Show, but for all I know, they're getting matching tattoos."

"Cool."

"I can, at the very least, offer you crash space on the couch for the night." Jane spread her arms wide. "This is a grade A certified used couch, from Goodwill, not the Dumpster! We offer all of the modern conveniences such as indoor plumping, reasonably clean bedding, cereal and coffee in the morning, and cable TV."

"Thanks, Janey."

Jane nudged her brother with a toe. "What are sisters for? Okay, so, where were you wanting to look for a place?"

"I think in Boston, actually. I've been up here helping you move several times and this place has a great aura."

"That was probably just the lingering college funk in all of the hovels I've lived in. Remember that place I lived where the landlord attempted to fix a leaking pipe with a Gatorade bottle and a roll of electrical tape?" Jane looked around briefly. "I'll be honest. Without Tom, we would have had a hard time affording this place. But it's so worth it! It has a dumbwaiter!"

Trent looked at Jane with a raised eyebrow. "You have another roommate?"

"No, silly. It's like a mini elevator that you put food into and it takes it upstairs for you so you don't spill an entire jar of grape jelly on the stairs like a certain musician I know."

"I wouldn't have spilled the jelly if Penny's parrot hadn't been trying to eat Summer's kid's hamster." Trent put his hands on his knees. "Um, thanks again. I don't know what it is about the rest of our family, but they're kind of weird. You're cool, though, Janey." He laughed briefly before it turned into a cough. "Do you have an extra toothbrush? I think I left mine back at the house."

Jane shook her head. "Nope. But I know Daria does. Her mom bought everything in bulk for her to move in to college with, and she's still working through the first dozen toothbrushes. She'll have pretty much anything else you'd need, too."

"Um, cool." Trent tried to get comfortable on the couch, but it was lumpy and worn. He'd survived sitting on worse, though. In fact, the uncomfortable seating had been the biggest reason he never fell asleep while driving the Tank. "So, how has school been?"

"The usual. I have one professor who just doesn't 'get' me, but he can't fault my techniques, so he can't grade me too low, and then I finally did a sculpture using gummy bears and after turning it in, a few ants swarmed it and got stuck and now that prof thinks I'm a genius and keeps encouraging me to use live bees in a sculpture somehow, and I've lost fifteen pounds because the one restaurant near campus with decent food closed for serving alcohol to minors, so dinner tends to be my one solid meal per day since the school food sucks."

"Wow. And, uh, any boyfriends I should know about? Or girlfriends?"

Jane smirked. "Nobody at the moment. This is not to say that I haven't been on dates, but there just hasn't been anyone lately to inspire a lot of confidence. Though, I can say that I have now made out with a chick. Wasn't too bad, actually. I'd repeat it under the influence of a lot of alcohol, I'm sure."

"Cool."

"Hey, you hungry? I've got half a pepperoni, mushroom and pineapple left. It's not warm, but if you require it, I know where the microwave is."

"Cold's fine, Janey. And, um, thanks."

Jane got up from the couch and grabbed the pizza box from a nearby table. "Trent, uh, why did you decide to come here instead of with any of your friends in Lawndale? I mean, not that I mind, but the guys from the band? Axl? Monique? Would none of them take you in?"

Trent stood up and grabbed the pizza box from Jane. "I don't know if they would have, but I didn't want to ask. The band's over. I was never *that* close to Axl. And Monique? I've made that mistake too many times now. I guess I realized that for as much as I want to stay young and cool forever, I'm closer to 30 than I think I thought I'd make it to, so maybe now's the time for me to stop keeping my eye on the prize and actually try to grab for it." He gestured toward the kitchen. "I think I changed my mind. But, I can probably find the microwave."

He strode toward the doorway he'd passed on the way inside, pretty certain that it had been the kitchen. Just as he was about to head in the doorway, the front door opened and Daria entered with Tom close behind. Daria froze in her steps when she saw Trent and Tom ran into her. As she stumbled forward, Jane heard the commotion and came running into the hallway. "Hey, amiga... I hope it's cool that I told Trent he can crash on the couch tonight. He's, um, moving to Boston."

Tom came out from around Daria and put an arm around her shoulders. "That's great. I hated that we were leaving Jane all alone sometimes."

Daria's eyes narrowed as she turned her gaze to her boyfriend. "She's not a social leper, Tom." She turned back to Trent and her gaze softened. "Can I assume that you have enough money for a deposit someplace?"

Trent grinned. "Um, some. I sold one of my guitars. But it used a lot more gas getting here than I thought, so I probably need more."

Jane put a hand on Trent's shoulder. "You sold a guitar? Well, now I know how serious you are about this."

Daria nodded. "I've got an air mattress that we can toss in the dining room if you needed to stay for a little longer. The table in there is actually a card table, so we can fold it up if we're not using it."

Jane coughed. "This is cool with you, too, Tom. Right?"

"Uh, yeah." Tom squeezed Daria's shoulder lightly. "Say, who's up for some Monopoly?"

End: Chapter 1.