Author's note: So, this is my first fanfic ever. Yes, I'm a fanfic virgin! And kind of new to this whole community. But I'm a self-proclaimed complete MoJo-lover, and of course a mad Rent-head, so I decided to write a story about how the two met. I hope you guys like it (but I won't blame you for not doing so). And as I wrote this story I realised just how much my English needs some brushing up to put it mildly, so any kind of constructive criticism is more than welcome! And thank you for taking the time to read my scribblings. I'll keep up the story if anyone happens to like it. And if so, ratings will definitely change.
Oh, and I do not own any of these characters. They belong to the late, great Jonathan Larson.
I let out a relieved sigh and closed my eyes for a few seconds in an attempt to let out all the stress, I'd built up throughout the last couple of days as I landed in my well-known armchair and allowed my head to rest on the back of the chair. I stayed like that for a couple of minutes before I slowly opened my eyes and took a quick glance around the large, bright living room, that always had some success in sending chills down my spine and nauseating me a little, trying to remember the last time I'd given myself the chance to just sit down and relax, not having what seemed like a million work-related thoughts bothering my mind: Being a lawyer, and particularly a New York-lawyer, left very little time to anything but work, and although I'd gotten somewhat used to my lack of a social life through the years, I couldn't help but feel a little numb everytime these thoughts crossed my mind.
I got up from the comfort of my armchair, trying to clear my head, suddenly getting a feeling of being a wild animal trapped inside a cage, and paced quickly across my huge living room as I involuntarily took in the revolting coherency and perfection of everything in here: Every single piece of furniture was in the exact place of perfection, its colors matching the off-white shade of every wall in every room of my Upper West Side-apartment, which had always sickened me a little, but now it seemed to overwhelm me. I grapped my coat from the closet in the hallway, practically threw it on me and let myself out of the apartment just as I heard the phone ring from behind the door. I stood still for a moment, my key still well placed in the keyhole, paralyzed by the sudden noise. I then pulled out the key and ran frantically down the stairs as if I was being chased by some kind of maniac. Taking the last three steps in a single jump, I reached the bottom of the stairs and started walking quickly towards the door. The second I opened it, a cool breeze hit my face, and for the very first time that day I felt... alive. Once outside I took a deep breath and then decided to go for a stroll through Central Park, so I started walking down the street to my right, discretely observing the everyday humdrum of New York City on a Thursday afternoon in the middle of November. A few construction workers applied a subtle scent of hot metal to the cool air on a nearby construction site to my left, and I took in a deep breath feeling somehow relaxed by this sensory exploration; the noise of the city, people passing me by in a quick pace, all appearing to be in a hurry not paying any attention whatsoever to one another, and the underlying feeling of maybe not being all alone in this world at last brought a slight sense of subtle joy to my mind.
After a few minutes walk I started to feel myself unwind a little, having reached the nearest entrance of the park. I steered immediately towards my well-known spot consisting of a somewhat remote bench right underneath a tremendous appletree, which during the summer time would flourish majestically above the rest of the nearby trees in the park, but now seemed to be taking a well-earned rest until next spring.
The bench seemed unoccuppied, so I quickened my pace and sat down on the nearest side of it just as I realised that I wasn't the only one who'd gotten that idea: A woman whom I'd noticed had been walking from the other side of the path in the very same direction as me, now stood right beside me with a puzzled look on her face. Trying somehow to portray the same sense of confusion, I looked expectantly up into her eyes, which caused the look on my face to change drastically from mild confusion to complete awe: Her piercing dark eyes looked at me, now with a mixture of surprise and thrill, giving me the perception that if she wanted, her eyes could penetrate my soul. Her long dark curls seemed to frame her face in a way that at first appeared as if it would have taken her ages to construct, but through closer inspection I realised the completely unintended chaos of it. However, the most striking thing about her were her remarkable facial features: Her strong cheekbones emphasizing her startlingly full, red lips that at the moment were curled into an apologetic, yet seemingly inviting smile, was the only thing about her that kept her from being categorized as what you might percieve as conventionally beautiful. Nevertheless, they provided her with a certain, almost caricaturistic, femininity that I wasn't quite able to fathom at first.
"Oh, God! I'm sorry," she burst out, still captivating me entirely with the intensity of her eyes. "I didn't realise this seat was taken." Her smile grew significantly larger once she'd finished her sentence, and it forced me to snap out of my trance in order to endure at least an attempt at a decent reply.
"Oh... Uhm, not at all," was all I managed to let out, trying in vain to keep the tone of my voice at its usual pitch, instead of the octave it had now risen. "Go right ahead," I then mumbled, gesturing with my arms the availability of the seat next to me in a little too theatrical manner, making a note in my mind not to act like a complete idiot next time I tried expressing myself verbally to this stranger of a woman.
"Great! Well, then I'd better strike while the offer still stands," she joked, sliding down next to me, not so close that we'd have to touch one another, but still, not at the far end of the bench like any normal New Yorker would. This sudden and somewhat unexpected motion caused me to investigate her closer: Her legs were covered in a skin-tight pair of leather pants, showing off her slim figure, ending in a set of high heeled boots. On the top, maybe in order to fulfill the look of provocative rock-chick, she wore a thin leather jacket, which she inspite of the frequent, cold November winds had decided to leave open in order for everyone else to get a glimpse of the tank-top she wore inside, showing off just a hint of her cleavage and managing, I realised through closer investigation, to let me know that she wasn't wearing a bra. I caught myself staring at this construction, swallowed hard and decided that I had to start up a conversation trying to cover up the many stolen looks I'd already sent her during the last few minutes.
"Uhm, nice weather, huh?" I almost yelled out in an attempt to keep my voice at a level suitable for people with at least approximately normal hearing, wanting to shove my foot so far down my throat, I'd choke on it, the minute I finished my pathetic attempt at an almost coherent sentence. I raised my glance from a point beetween my own feet and managed to built up the courage to meet her eyes once again.
"Yeah, I guess it is," she stated, keeping up her tantalizing smile. Her voice indicating a sense of carefree bliss, letting me know that she was aware of how her presence was the main reason for my sudden discomfort. Somehow, it encouraged me to keep up what could hardly be defined as a conversation. But as I opened my mouth and took in a shallow breath preparing myself for how I was gonna try to make up for the last few sentences I'd already spat out at her, she interrupted me.
"I'm Maureen, by the way," she said, confidence written all over her face, reaching out a slender hand with almost every finger ringed.
"Joanne," I replied, finally being able to recognize my own collected business-like self, as I reached out for her hand as well.