We had family over tonight in from Houston and I've been buring DVD's like a mad woman! I can finally step down my Inu Yasha and various other anime full length Movies that have been choking my harddrive forever because they were too large to burn to a CD, not only can I burn them off my drive, I can burn them to watch as a DVD!! I love my new present!
I am so taking a Vacation for myself like February or March, a nice long weekend to do fuck all but relax because I need a BREAK.
We'll not go into the 45 minute phone call from 77 year old Ilene who had ring worms falling out of her anus O_o
Dude I've had one fucked up week. I hate Open Enrollment and Strange Old people who feel it necessary to enter the realms of TMI for extended periods of time...
I also have 6 gmail invites to anyone who wants one....
but anyhoo..... More Fic
“Giubilante Con Calore”
T H E I N F I N I T Y S E R I E S
* II *
Author: D. Sanders
The Rest of this un-proofread monstrosity can be Found here:
“Well I still think you’re one of the better ones. You have good moral character, and that doesn’t recognize social status. Thanks for making me feel better.” Romi leaned over and kissed his cheek. “Goodnight.”
As she walked out Phineas held a hand to his cheek, it almost tingled. “Goodnight.” He said back as the door shut, a stupid grin spreading across his face. Kisses weren’t so bad after all when Romi gave them, hers were different, hers were genuine and even chaste and made as a gesture of friendship, they still felt like they burned where her lips had touched his skin.
Phineas was sure he was flushed a bright red, he was glad it was dark in his room and he was alone to blush in private.
Over the next two weeks things seemed to settle into a routine. Romi and Mary would head off to school together after breakfast; Leigh would pick them up in his hopper so they didn’t have to walk. He and Mary were officially together as boyfriend and girlfriend and that pleased Mandy to no end. She had never liked Jack and after the incident where Phineas threw him out on his ear, he’d not been back.
During the workday week, Phineas went with Farin to the shop daily to help out until they shut down for a long four-week vacation during Winterfest into the New Year. He just couldn’t justify shutting for six weeks; there was work that needed to be done. This gave Phineas and Farin a lot of quality time together and their relationship really had become as solid as Father and Son.
Phineas was quite handy where it came to helping Farin organize and even handier when a client needed something delivered or picked up. The regular clients were full of congratulatory wishes and then praise when they noticed how efficient and precise Phineas was in his duties assigned to him. He wanted to make Farin proud and he felt useful at last and like he was earning his keep. He worked hard at everything even his studies.
When he wasn’t schlepping for the salvage yard, which now bore a sign that read “Corcoran and Son Salvage” he could be found at his desk, pouring over the workbooks Farin had bought. He knew the standardized federation alphabet that ninety-nine percent of the federated planets adopted as the official language for inter-galaxy trade and commerce and what almost all humans spoke away from the home planet. He knew other races had languages of their own, he’d seen more strange races in his life than any Pirotaine Native his own age had ever dreamed of. Mirastor was certainly a place to see the universe and all it’s races at it’s worst, but universal translators helped understand the various languages and even Eran with all his years and learning could only speak Standard and Tsion fluently without the aide of a translation box. He did fine for himself and encouraged Phineas to stick with what he already knew then dabble in other languages after learning the basics of his own.
He was even able to sound out words if Farin wrote them down, which helped reading street signs when he was looking for a client for a drop off or pick up job. Math was getting better too, if he worked the numbers in sets of ten he could understand. He knew ten tens were in one hundred, he applied basic logic for higher numbers, but anything more than a thousand he had to figure out on paper he could not work the numbers in his head without getting confused and lost. He was doing just basic addition and subtraction but it was enough that he understood and was able to actually use his credit disk by himself without help. He’d save higher math until later, he’d take one step at a time and he felt proud that he’d mastered what he had in just two short weeks.
It also helped that his friends helped him too. After school let out Romi would go home to work on music with Beau, Cris and Val, then Leigh, Simon, Mary and Maevis would come by the salvage yard and they’d help him study while they did their own homework with him. They tended to explain things differently than Farin and if he’d had trouble with a concept, sometimes someone explaining the same thing in a different manner made the light come on for Phineas and he latched on and moved on. After they finished, they’d all go to the bakery for a treat before heading home. Phineas always remembered to bring Romi something since she was too busy to join them. She’d eat hers after dinner while she did her homework. She’d use the table in Phineas’ room and while she did her homework Phineas would either work some more on his studies or work on the landscape picture he was drawing for Mandy for Winterfest.
They tended to sit in companionable silence most of the time, with soft music playing on Romi’s small portable disk player. Romi was munching on the cookie Phineas bought for her while she worked on her history paper and Phineas finished Mandy’s picture then set to work on a new picture. Romi had her hair pulled back in a messy ponytail and had a wonderful half-irritated half-confused look of concentration on her face. She was always animated facially and she amused Phineas with her occasional indignant outbursts where she talked back to her book like it was an idiot and a liar.
This was one of those evenings, Romi detested history and was currently telling the war figures in her book that they were a bunch of minutely endowed men dick slapping each other over a chunk of ground and that, had they had the capacity to find a date and get laid to dislodge their inferiority complexes, she wouldn’t have been stuck having to write a stupid report about them three thousand years later.
“Tell the world how you REALLY feel Romi.” Phineas chuckled as he began his portrait.
“Well it’s true. I can never see the point why people have to solve things by blowing each other up.” She replied finishing her cookie as one of her favorite songs began to play and she changed gears almost faster than Beau and was happily singing along while she jotted notes.
Phineas just smiled and continued to draw the girl across from him at the table. He liked everything about her. Her laugh, her smile, her attitude, her vivaciousness, her talent, her slight figure buried under clothes much too large, her face, her hair, everything about her he was infatuated with she pressed every single one of his buttons by just breathing.
Some buttons he wished she didn’t press, because she always managed to hit them at the most inopportune times. He was no stranger to the ways of the world, some things you learned earlier than most when you lived on the streets. The birds and the bees was one of those topics one tended to learn quite early. Especially when your neighbors were prostitutes who took it upon themselves to educate him how to please a lady right.
Not that he’d complained much; puberty was an awkward thing for most boys his age. Living on the streets he’d had a slight advantage to this particular form of education and he had been shown the ropes the minute he’d discovered his penis was for more than taking a whiz behind a garbage can. When they’d discovered he’d been getting his first erections, at the rip old age of twelve, he had been passed around the ladies in the alleys who thought he should know how not to do things. They hated men and hated lousy lovers even more, so they decided to teach Phineas how to be a good lover and how to properly see to his partner’s pleasure. He was surprised he didn’t have more diseases than he did, but then they always made sure they protected him and themselves, he’d worn condoms during all those liaisons.
Now however he was having desires for a certain raven-haired tomboy that he had to squash almost daily. He woke up having to take a cold shower, he’d listen to her sing in hers through the wall and he’d be right back in his own bathroom, taking care of matters. Just the thought of her in the nude and he was hopelessly aroused and he’d swear the air blue under his breath until matters were taken care of and he could face unlocking his door and greeting the world. He was thankful to go to work to take his mind off Romi for at least an hour or two before daydreaming about her at work.
His only quandary was determining just when and how to broach the subject. It was different with prostitutes, there were no courting rituals and they’d failed to teach him those little details that were so important in the real world. He watched Leigh and Mary and Maevis and Simon almost obsessively trying to learn without being obvious. He just didn’t know how to go about asking her, what was he supposed to say? How was he supposed to say it? How long were you supposed to actually know each other first? Did he have to take her on a date first? There were so many questions and no easy way to ask any of them. So he would just bide his time and carry on as it was currently, they got along wonderfully, they laughed a lot together, he didn’t want to blow the tenuous relationship they already had by rushing things.
No matter how badly he wanted to catch her under that mistletoe.
“What are you drawing?” Romi asked looking up from her book.
“What on earth for?”
“Because I want to.”
“Draw Mary, she’s so much prettier.”
“No she’s not.”
“Please Phineas, you don’t have to humor me.”
“I’m not. I really hate the way you talk about yourself. I think you’re beautiful, here look for yourself.” Phineas said passing her his sketchpad.
“I don’t look like that.”
“Yes you do. Come here.” Phineas took her hand and led her to the bathroom mirror and he made her face it then held his pad up next to her face. “I think I’m doing a poor job replicating that face. I wish you could see yourself the way others see you. The way I see you.”
Romi gave him a look in the mirror that nigh on defied explanation, she looked stunned almost disbelieving that a boy would find her even remotely pretty. “You’re serious.”
“Of course I am.” Phineas smiled at her in the mirror and winked reaching up to take out the band that bound her hair back and it fell down over her shoulders and he framed her face in his hands. “Just look at that, you don’t need all that paint that the other girls put on their faces. You take it off Mary and she looks different. You don’t need any of that crap to be beautiful, the Gods made you perfect as is, no accessories or paint required.”
“Phineas… I.” Romi blushed and hid her face in her hands. Phineas still behind her reached up and pulled her hands down, making her face herself in the mirror.
“Don’t ever cover that up, I didn’t mean to embarrass you.”
“I know you didn’t.” Romi smiled at him in the mirror and he held up a finger and flipped the page in his pad and drew a quick sketch. He held the pad over her head, and smiled in hope and query. He’d drawn a sprig of mistletoe. Romi laughed and turned around to face him.
“God I thought you’d never ask.” She sighed putting her arms around his neck. He set the pad down on the counter and pulled her slowly into his arms and leaned down, she was so much shorter than he, and he gave her a tender kiss to her lips. He leaned back and their eyes met in understanding.
“I didn’t know how to ask you.” Phineas chuckled as the ice cracked nicely under the warmth forming between them.
“I think you did a pretty good job there asking.” Romi grinned, her arms still about his neck, craning her head up to look at him. “You’re too damn tall.”
“You’re just short, I can bend.” Phineas chuckled leaning over to kiss her again. She almost purred as he took his sweet time kissing her properly, it was enough to curl his own toes, and he was the in the lead. She certainly responded well, he was high as a kite.
“Wow, what a kisser, Holy Cow. Okay we need to stop or I’ll never get my homework done. You sly devil.” Romi grinned almost dancing out of the bathroom. Phineas followed amused, it had been easy to ask her after all, it was just the timing that was hard to get right.
“Romi, can I ask you something?”
“Of course.” Romi replied sitting down again at the table.
“What’s the Festival Carnival? The others keep mentioning it.”
“It’s dancing and games and stuff. It’s sort of a kick off to Winterfest in Rael; it’s the last day of school before a month long vacation. It’s this weekend. Why?”
“Can I take you? I don’t know much about it, but it sounds fun and I’d like to take you to it. The others are taking their girls. I mean if you want and if you don’t mind being my girl.”
“Stop Phineas, you’re stumbling all over the place.” Romi laughed, amused by his stammering. “Yes, I’ll go with you, and I’ve been your girl since the second you laid that whopper kiss on me back there stud.” Romi winked and Phineas laughed.
“You liked that huh?” He asked with a smirk.
“Oh yeah, you’d better have more of those in there hidden away somewhere. Just give them when I don’t have homework I need to concentrate on, they’re, uh, distracting.”
“They’re supposed to be, and there’s more where that came from.”
“Oh goody, now arrrgh shush a minute! I have to finish this damn thing demon spawn.”
Phineas nodded and went back to drawing his new girlfriend and Romi went back to swearing at her History Book.
While Romi finished up her paper, Phineas went downstairs to grab them both strawberry sodas, they were her favorite flavor too and the adults were all around the table playing a hand of cards.
“What’s with the stupid grin on your face?” Cris smirked as Phineas raided the cooling unit.
“I’m in a good mood.”
“Any particular reason?” Beau drawled discarding a drawing another.
“Maybe.” Phineas was not taking the bait.
“Like we’re gonna let you leave this room without fessing up? You’ve got another thing coming boy-o.” Cris added everyone turning to look at him.
“Did you ask her out?” Beau asked and Phineas sighed.
“How is it you always, ALWAYS know?”
“Because I’m old and I notice things. Like a girl who obsessively talks about you during recording sessions or a boy who lies in wait by the mistletoe waiting for her to stand under it. Like a boy who remembers to bring her treats daily and like a girl who’s just your type right under your noise and you conveniently reacting to her like a teenager in heat. Duh. So did you ask her out?” Beau asked and Phineas smiled.
“I presume she said yes to warrant that grin on your face?” Cris asked and Eran slapped his cards down.
“You’re fucking old biddy gossips I swear. Leave the boy alone for goodness sakes!” Eran said rolling his eyes and turning to Phineas. “You don’t have to put up with them ya know. You are allowed to tell them to fuck off.”
Phineas laughed. “I don’t mind. Yes, she said yes. But I’m in the shit, cause I certainly do not know how to dance. I’m screwed.”
“You can keep time, you can dance. You just sway to the music.” Cris said and Beau laughed.
“And grab her ass during the slow numbers.” Beau waggled his eyebrows and Mandy slapped him in the arm.
“You do not Phineas! Don’t listen to Beau. God do you want Romi to clock him one for being cheeky? That girl certainly has spunk I wouldn’t put it past her. I love a girl not afraid to be herself. Mom approves.” Mandy winked and Phineas chuckled.
“Great. We’re just finishing up our work, we’re on a pop break is all.”
“Go on Phineas, we won’t keep you from it.” Farin waved him off laying his hand down with a victorious “GIN!”
“You bastard.” Eran cursed, one jack of hearts away from Gin himself.
“Why thank you. Not to change gears here, call it a Dad thing, but did anyone else notice the difference between Phineas and the others?”
“What are you getting at?” Mandy asked collecting the cards for a shuffle.
“I think he’s older or he’s just big for his age. Look at Leigh and Simon next to him, they’re both fifteen, and Phineas is a good head taller than them both. Romi is sixteen, but she’s short anyway, Mary is almost fifteen and she’s average. And I swear I’m seeing peach fuzz on that lad’s chin. I’d say he’s at least a year older if not two.”
“He may just be bigger naturally. Some boys do hit their spurts early. I did. I was all skinny and short then wham! From age fifteen to seventeen I shot up seven inches and filled out everywhere.” Val said picking up his hand as Mandy dealt the cards out.
“It’s also hard to know how old you are if you’ve no birth record. I had one, Phineas doesn’t.” Cris said grimacing at the lousy cards he was being dealt.
“Hang on a minute, that’s really easy to figure out. I have his blood sample and bone scans on file. Hold on.” Mandy said getting up to go in the next room to run a scan. She came back just a few minutes later.
“Farin has a good eye. I just did a bone density, chronological analysis. I don’t know why I didn’t think of that earlier. According to the reading, chronological estimate of age is sixteen years, seven months and fifteen days. He was close, he is a late spring baby, but off by a year. He’s almost seventeen not almost sixteen.”
“I thought so, he looked it in comparison to others his age.” Farin said as the game resumed when Mandy returned to her chair.
“So both he and Romi are legal then. Watch out Mandy.” Val grinned and Mandy just shrugged.
“If they do, they do. If they don’t, they don’t. If you try to stop them, they just find horrible places to do it anyway. I’d rather them just be comfortable where I can provide them a safe environment and precautionary devices. I already have Mary on Birth Control drugs, I have plenty and condoms. Legal consenting ages or not those kids will finish school damn it at least.”
“Can we get back to the game here? Please?” Eran whined. Hormonal teenagers were just that, he gave a rat’s ass if they screwed each other or not. Phineas was a good kid, with a lot of street smarts, he’d know what to do if they left him alone to do it. He doubted very seriously Phineas would lay a hand on Romi without a condom already in his pocket.
Homework finished, both teens were curled up on Phineas’ bed watching vids on the bedroom display that dropped out of the ceiling like it did on the “Infinity”. Romi was tucked under Phineas’ arm where he leaned against the headboard and she against his side. They’d settled on watching a documentary on Mirastor, they were flipping through the menu and Romi asked to watch it.
“Christ, that’s my part of the city! Oh my god, pause!” The vid stopped and Phineas leaned closer, there was a small boy in the background, orange hair all wild and missing two front teeth.
“Oh my god, Phineas, is that?”
“That’s me! God I must have been about five or six. I lost my teeth that year.”
“This said it was documented twelve years ago, that would make you seventeen not fifteen. Are you sure that’s you?”
“I’m positive. That tart there, that’s Regina Flax. She died when her trick shot her. Not long after this was filmed probably. That shop there, it’s liquor store that sells Phantasim Poppies out the back. Down that alley is the abandoned store room Tovi and I lived in, god what a shit hole.” Phineas said dashing out the door to the top of the stairs. “Mom! Dad! You gotta come see this!” He called down racing back to his room where Romi’s eyes were still glued to the screen.
“What?” Mandy asked entering the room Farin and the others right behind them.
“Look! That’s me!” Phineas said pointing to the freeze frame. He was standing there, looking filthy and shifty. Barefeet wrapped in spare bits of discarded shoes and held to his soles by stips of fabric. His coat, twelve sizes to large was torn in a myriad of places and a large scarf was tied around his middle to hold it on.
“Dear god, that is you. You couldn’t have been more than five!” Mandy gasped loosing the support in her knees as she dropped to the bed beside Romi, her hand to her lips in shock.
“I know, I had no front teeth.” Phineas grinned not realizing the effect this was having on Mandy and Romi. He was just fascinated he was on film, he had no idea what his appearance in that horrid state was doing to them. He took it off pause to see what he’d do, he was only in the background, when suddenly the camera zoomed in.
… as you can see, the conditions in the lower districts of Emerald City are
anything but the fabled City it’s named after. Here in under town, drug trafficking and
prostitution are the mainstay. Hardly a place for children, yet here we see
a young boy wandering alone. At the age where the Wizard of Oz should be his
bedtime story he’s forced to dream of his next meal and bed rather than
Yellow Brick Roads and the only rubies here come from mines. His life
Will be one of two things, he’ll either become a criminal or eventually end up, if he
Survives at all, working twelve hour days deep underground digging
Up precious jewels for the more fortunate to adorn their fingers. Even as we film this, there are hundreds more just like him…
As the camera filmed, Phineas watched his smaller self shiver from cold as he carefully relieved a drunk of his wallet.
“Turn it off.” Romi’s voice was haunted. “TURN IT OFF!” She dashed out of the Room in tears.
“Romi! Romi!” Phineas followed her into her room “What’s wrong?”
“What’s wrong? I just watched you in a living hell! What’s wrong? How did you expect me to react seeing that?”
“I dunno, I told you that place sucked.”
“I’d choose a little stronger word than SUCKED! How on earth can you be so …detached?”
“Numb to it I guess. You learn to shut it out after a while I suppose. Please don’t cry.” Phineas walked over and she shuddered as he embraced her and she cried into his chest.
Mandy walked in and placed her arms around them both. “Romi if everyone reacted to seeing that the way you just did, there wouldn’t be a problem in the first place sweetheart.”
“Amen to that.” Cris said in the doorway. “The only trouble is, you can turn it off and forget about it. Kids like Phineas and me didn’t have that luxury. It was live and on every minute. You do get numb after a while. You have to grow numb or it kills you.”
“Cris!” Mandy said as Romi cried harder.
“Truth hurts Mandy. Things won’t ever change there if people just turn it off when they see it. If every kid had to see that all the way through without turning it off when it got intense maybe just maybe it would stay with them and they’d go out and make a difference later. They wouldn’t feed the problem or turn a blind eye to it. To cure the disease you got to acknowledge it exists first. That’s the whole problem right there in a nutshell.”
“You’re preaching to the Choir Cris.” Eran said beside him.
“Yeah, I know.”
“I’m sorry I made you cry.” Phineas said softly and backed up letting her go. “I didn’t mean to.” Phineas turned to go and Mandy’s hand shot out to grab his arm.
“Where are you going?” She asked and Phineas gave her a sad look that showed devastation in his eyes.
“Just out before I cause anymore damage.”
“This is NOT your fault.”
“No, I know that. I should have been a little more sensitive. I just thought, I’d never seen myself on the Vid before. I didn’t think, I’m sorry.” Phineas felt like a cad, he’d been all excited seeing himself he had no idea Romi would take it so hard, he managed to blow that quickly enough and before anyone else could stop him he ran downstairs, grabbed his coat off the hook and vanished outside into the dark.
“Romi, we know you got upset there. If you really want to help a boy from those streets, you’ll go after him. He needs the comfort more than you, even if he’ll never admit it. He’s fragile right now, he’s just learning what the real world is like, happiness is broken easily. Especially when I can tell you right now exactly what’s going through his head. He’s feeling like a right bastard, feeling unworthy of anything, especially you. Every step he takes his hard, right now he’s kicking himself thinking he’s destroyed something he desperately wants.” Cris said pushing her toward the door.
“He’s right love. When I met Cris he was just like Phineas. The moods are wild highs and devastating lows. He has no balance yet and is teetering on emotions he doesn’t understand. We all have to help him. You especially, he loves you most of all.”
Romi nodded, feeling horrible herself for over-reacting and heading down the stairs after Phineas.