2008-01-04: Bad Day At The Geekatorium


Cam_icon.gif KeLyssa_icon.gif Kory_icon.gif Portia_icon.gif Randall_icon.gif

Special appearance by: Leslie_icon.gif "Gareth" the lovestruck nerdboy.


Date It Happened: January 4, 2008

Log Title Bad Day At the Geekatorium

The Secret Lair

It's been a long day already for KeLyssa. She's been at work for most of the day. It's been fun though. She hardly ever feels like she's /actually/ working when she's at the Secret Lair. In fact, it's more fun than anything most of the time. Even when she's doing a lot of work. Presently she's helping a new face to the store find a manga series that he's had trouble finding anywhere. She's sure they have it though. And she /thinks/ she can find it just fine. Hopefully.
Tito would have, before he got sick, showed Kelyssa the lay of the store, and the neat, tidy, organized computer system that Nima used and Kory maintains, the better to locate things easily. But as fate would have it, Kory walks in, shivering, with a huge Mastiff dog heeling obediently on a leash at her right side.

"Hey, KeLyssa. I wanted to stop by and say thank you," Kory says sincerely, smile lighting on seeing her as the one on shift for the day. "This is Ickle Ronniekins." She must mean the dog. That great big huge dog with the cutesy-wootsey name.

Chewbacca lifts his head and scents the air. He eyes the new dog. The new dog eyes him back. But they are both cold, so there is no "Who's the alpha dog, dog" type response from either of them, much to Kory's relief.

At Kory's voice, the young man going by "Gareth" most recently looks up and waves with a shy smile to her. Kory catches the motion and waves back. "Hi. Happy New Year."

KeLyssa looks behind a few other bits of manga before pulling one out. "Aha! An' here we got it!" She smiles at the guy. "Here ya go, hun. I'll be right up front if ya need anythin' else, alright?" She smiles at him before turning to see Kory walking in. "Hey, Kory. It ain't no problem. Tito was no shape at to be workin' anyhow. He was lookin' terrible last I saw 'im." She shakes her head. Smiling at the dog, she lets him sniff her hand before she starts petting him. "Are ya a cutie, Ickle Ronniekins. Yes ya are!" She giggles. Glancing back at "Gareth" she remembers the present. "Oh, Kory, yeah got a present. I put it b'hind the counter, underneath the till. It's from him." She nods in the general direction of Gareth.

Ickle Ronniekins sniffs, decides KeLyssa is a friend, and gives a soft whuffling noise at her. Upon petting, he sighs, audibly, and leans into her. All seventy eight pounds of him. Ahhh. Being loved on. Yay. Chewbacca does not rouse at this either, because his humans love on him, too, and besides, he's napping.

"Oh? Did I?" She glances at the spindly young man with the stringy hair. "That's so nice of you. Thank you." She blushes; she hadn't gotten him anything, clearly.

"It…it's no problem," Gareth murmurs, face flaming red but a smile on his face. "Just…just saw it and thought you …you might …y'know. L-like it."

KeLyssa giggles as Ickle Ronniekins leans against her. "Silly li'l dog." She says. "Here, since you're takin' care of the dog, I'll get ya the present. Chewie's already been 'round once or twice, sniffin' at it. He keeps wonderin' what's inside! Givin' me questionin' looks, an' all." She grins. She heads off behind the counter and grabs the present, placing it on top. "Well, here we go." She says with a smile.
Little, Ickle Ronniekins isn't, but he pants happily at KeLyssa just the same. Chewbacca looks up at the mention of his name, and grins a doggie grin, whuffling happily as Kory pats his head on her way to the counter. "Have you, Chewie? Have ya? Wanna know what's in the box?" Kory gasps as she gets to it, and "Gareth" looks up, wide-eyed. "Mmmm. It smells wonderful." She begins to unwrap it.

KeLyssa winks at Gareth as she pushes the present toward Kory for her to open it. "Mm, that's what I thought when he gave it to me to give to ya. Really, it was very sweet." Whispering she says, "He really seem to like ya, Boss Lady. More'n the others." She says with a tiny shrug. Speaking normally again, she says, "Well, let's get on to seein' what's inside." She grins widely, even though Garath himself had told her already.

"Ronniekins," Kory commands firmly. "Quidditch." Yes. the owners of the dog have gone Harry Potter thematic to the point of commands to the dog. He obediently trots around the counter and lies down. She looks up at KeLyssa, speculatively. Glances back at "Gareth". Gareth isn't looking up. He's got his nose in a book this time. "Really?" she whispers, a little surprised. But louder, she adds, "Kory. The name is Kory," mock-angrily at Kelyssa. The paper is unwrapped with the slowness of one whose mom saves it to use again next year.

KeLyssa grins at the dog. "I was goin' to ask if the name was chosen 'cause o' the Harry Potter character." She smirks. "I suppose that answers it." She giggles. She nods in response to the whole "Gareth" thing. Whispering again, "I seen how guys look at ya…and well, me for that matter 'round this shop. They're shy 'round us all the time. But he…he really does seem to really like ya. That's the feelin' I got when I talked to 'im leastways." She says with an affirmative nod. Speaking normally, she says, "Sorry, Boss Lady Kory." She winks and holds up her hands in mock-defense.

"Yep. You should see his little Gryffindor sweater. I don't know where his people put it or he'd be wearing it," Kory tells Kelyssa. "Well, yeah," she adds, lowering her voice again. "That kinda comes with the territory. They looked at Nima that way too. It's just a crush, I'm sure." She seems genuinely surprised, though, that Gareth, or any of the fanboys, got her a gift. They are usually so broke they can't afford anything but their comics, their toys, their statues. She finally gets the present open, though, and gasps. "Oh!" Inside the box is a number of herbal teas in little blue packages, and a matching brewing globe. "Oh, Le—" she catches herself as "Gareth" winces. "Gary. This is really nice of you. Thank you so much."

"I remeber you m-mentioning," the man tells her, glancing up at her through his hair, "…that…that you have trouble sleeping. So I …I had my mom look up wh-what herbal teas would h-help."

Kory blinks, astonished. "Wow. I …that's really nice of you." She blushes a little. Apparently KeLyssa called it right.

KeLyssa laughs. "Oh, I'd love to see that. Sounds like his people are interestin' people." She says with a grin. She nods a tad bit. "Yeah, I know. They're all darlin' though. Nice people." She shrugs. She gazes between Gareth and Kory, smiling. She whispers, "What'd I tell ya?" She says quietly.

"They're sweeties," Kory assures KeLyssa. "Chris and Chris just loved the series. There's even a framed picture of them and Ronnie when he was a puppy with J.K. Rowling." And she nods, in response to the quieter response from KeLyssa. "Yeah, so you did…" she's not sure what to do now; she doesn't want to hurt his feelings, but she sure doesn't want to encourage him. Best to change the subject. "So — how are things going with Dani?" Maybe talk of KeLyssa's boyfriend will bring things around to allowing her to casually bring up she has a boyfriend too.

KeLyssa smiles a little. She knows how Kory feels, honestly. As much as she worried about her date with Dani, she's also had to turn boys away in the past, and it's always been uncomfortable and worrisome. She smiles at mention of Dani. "Oh, just wonderful. He's such a sweetheart…and…it seems we have a li'l more in common than first thought. But…yeah." She giggles lightly. "Oh, he's a good guy. I really like him." She sighs. "So," she asks with a sly grin on her face, "Anythin' spectacular goin' on in your life?"

"Oh, good. I'm so glad to hear that," Kory says, sincerely, tucking the tea box away again, and putting it under the counter again until she's ready to take it with her. "And you were so worried, and here things are going swimmingly." She gives KeLyssa a silent look of gratitude for the returned volley question. "Oh, yeah. Randall and I spent New Year's Eve together," she says, trying to keep the dreamy tone out of her voice that tends to creep in there when she mentions Randall. "He spotted me on the subway on my birthday and told me he loves me. We kinda had to cut it short, though, when Ickle Ronniekins' guys needed me on short notice to dog sit."

The man calling himself "Gareth" looks up as the two women begin exchanging girl talk. He smiles as Kory tells KeLyssa she needn't worry, and ducks his head to hide the pained grimace as Kory mentions Randall and how well things are between the two of them.

KeLyssa giggles slightly. "I know. I was silly to worry, really. I just…anxiety of the first date, ya know?" She laughs. "No, you were right. I never properly thanked ya, either, Kory. Ya really helped me that day, b'fore the first date. Calmed my nerves. I was so nervous that I was startin' to think that maybe I should reschedule the date for another day. Now I'm glad I didn't. And it was ya who did that." She says with a sincere smile. When she starts talking about Randall and how he told Kory he loves her, KeLyssa lets out a little light sigh. "Awww, that is so sweet. You're lucky to have 'im. He seems like a real lovely guy."

Kory nods her head at KeLyssa. "I know how it is," she says, gently. "I used to have the same anxiety about guys not liking …the real me."

The guy who wants to be called Gareth looks up, inquisitively, but doesn't say anything, though his expression is typical lovestruck puppy 'how could anyone not like the real you?!' "Got to the point where I didn't even bother after my freshman year at college. But Randall treats me like I'm not weird, but …special. Like he's lucky I picked him."

The gamer geek in the back nods to himself, expression still a bit glum, but almost accepting. Randall seems to have passed some sort of 'are you worthy' in his eyes. "So yeah, looks like we've got us a couple keepers, huh?" Kory nudges KeLyssa affectionately.

KeLyssa smiles at Kory, glad that she's understanding. "Ya know, I didn't think Dani would like the 'real' me for a while either…but…I was wrong about him, too. He treats me like I'm not different, but rather like he's happy and fine with who I really am. It's a nice feelin'. Somethin' that ya don't really find often, ya know." She giggles. "Yeah, I'd say we've got ourselves a couple keepers." She says, smiling wide.

"I don't know what's not to like," Kory ripostes at KeLyssa. "You're cool people." A certain, subtle emphasis on that second word there. "Anybody who couldn't see that is not worth your time." She points to the table of guys huddled around the table. "And that's true for you guys too, y'know! Any girl who treats you different isn't worth your attention."

KeLyssa smiles. "I don't know either." She tilts her head slightly. She caught some subtle comment. "Yeah…cool people. Very…cool." She does long to mention to Kory about her ability, if she hasn't already caught on anyway. KeLyssa hates to keep things hidden. She can be bluntly honest at times. But…she's still afraid to sometimes. She's afraid what people will say even if she is sure she can trust them.
The geek boys playing Deadlands all look up as Kory speaks, and roll their eyes and shake their heads. The one called Professor Neckbeard actually comments, "That's why Leeloo and Inara and Ivanova are better. A fantasy will never blow you off for not being cool enough."

Some of the guys murmur in agreement with him. The rest look over at Kory with thanks for the advice. Gareth rolls his dice and whispers to the guy next to him from behind his storyteller's screen.

Kory has figured KeLyssa out; she never bothers to wear a warm coat in this weather, much like somebody else Kory knows. And she was skittish about Dani liking the real her. She put two and two together and got four. The way she figures it, they can talk about it in private later, and hey, if the a/c goes out in the summer, KeLyssa has job security. "Very much cool, and I'm sure Dani thinks so too." But enough of the rubbing the boys' noses in their taken-ness. "How's the shop been since the new year? We doing okay? Do I need to order in anything special for anybody?"

It certainly isn't hard to get four when thinking of KeLyssa. Not if you really pay attention and think about it. To the questions, she smiles. "We've been doin' alright. No special orders right now. Though they're bound to come in. We're runnin' a li'l low on some of the x-men comics. We're not in dire straights as yet though. But it wouldn't hurt to order up some more."

"Can do," Kory tells KeLyssa. "The X-Men seem to be popular lately. Second only to 9th Wonders, go figure." She glances reflexively at that display as she mentions it. She stopped reading it, a bit creeped out to see herself in the pages, even if all she was doing was talking to Niki and Hiro. "And looks like we need some more 9th Wonders too." She pops open the screen on the store laptop and types herself a reminder.

"Can you order the next expansion of Scion?" Gareth asks, voice suddenly not stammery.

"You got it," Kory tells him. "If it's not delayed. Again."
KeLyssa nods as she looks around. She turns suddenly to face Kory again, as she remembers to ask her about something. "Hey Kory?" She asks timidly. "Ya…ya wouldn't've heard of a guy named Suresh, would ya?"

"Suresh?" Kory repeats. "The guy who wrote 'Activating Evolution'?" She nods. "We had a few copies here, on special order, but only like three. Once they sold, we didn't reorder. Cass' place, Enlightenment, up the street? They carry it." She gestures toward the store, with a vague hand. "Good read, but you're gonna need Merriam Webster and Wikipedia open while you're reading it. And this is me telling you this. My mom's a nurse and I've read thousands of books — no joke." The insomnia, naturally. "And it was hard for me to get through."

KeLyssa nods a bit. "Yeah…right. Him. No, I was just wonderin' is all. I've got a copy of his book myself. Read a bit of it." She smiles lightly. "I was just wonderin' is all." She shrugs. "He did have some interestin' things to say." She looks around. "Just wonderin' if ya knew anythin' else 'bout him. That's all. But it ain't important."
"Sorry, not much more than what you see between the covers and on the web." But she leans forward and whispers, "And the fact that he was right." She meets KeLyssa's eyes for a moment, then calls over to Gareth, "Looks like the Scion thing is delayed again. You're gonna have to make do with the web supplements from the other fans. Sorry."

The sincerity in her apology and the way she said 'fans' rather than 'fanboy' gets a wry smile from Gareth. "Thanks for looking," he says to her.

KeLyssa blinks at Kory when she whispers to her. She just looks forward, at a lost for words. She can't think of what to say, really. She wasn't expecting /that/ from Kory. She takes a few deep breaths in before turning to Kory once she's done talking with Gareth. "Can we talk in private?"

Kory checks Ronnie. He doesn't seem to need walkies, and is content to lie there. All the new scents. "Sure. C'mon. 'Scuse us a moment, gents." She leads KeLyssa into the office. "We won't be a minute."

KeLyssa takes a deep breath in and breathes it out slowly, looking around. She nods, following Kory to the office, where she's sure to close the door carefully, to make sure it's closed securely. "I…I got somethin' I wanna tell ya, Kory. It's…it's somethin' I've been thinkin' of tellin' ya for a little while now, but I could never get the guts to actually come out and tell ya."

Kory waits for the door to be closed and for KeLyssa to check and be assured it's closed to her satisfaction. "Works out," she tells the other woman. "Because this store…well, there's a long story. But you go first, huh?"

KeLyssa smiles a little nervously. "Well…I ain't exactly 'normal', in the normal sense of the word. It's like you said 'bout that book, he was right. I'm one of them that he mentions in the book. I've been 'evolved'." She shakes her head. "It's…it's a strange thing. I ain't never asked for it. It just happened, ya know?" She sighs, not feeling like she's doing a good job at explaining. "Here, I'll show ya what I mean." She places her hand on the desk over a clear spot. As she slowly raises her hand up from the desk, so does a bit of ice appear where her hand was just a split second ago. She slowly moves her hand in a circle to make the ice spiral up a little before closing her hand and ending the little ice 'sculpture' with an upward spike.

Kory doesn't even look surprised. She's seen the ability before, on someone else. "Mm-hmm," she says, knowingly. "I kind of figured that would be the case. You were wearing a sundress in New York City right at the end of the year," she points out. "So I thought maybe you had something cold related going on." She takes a breath. The tiny office is cramped enough she's backed up against the bookcase. "Here's the thing. This store was set up intentionally, by the original owners — not Nima, her folks — to attract people like us." She said us, yes, but she didn't offer a demonstration of her ability. "And they were right about that too. You know how I went to all that trouble to make a section of the store where the longboxes were sorted by superpower instead of just by title and publisher? That's why."

KeLyssa seems a little confused…no, not confused. Rather, amazed and in awe. "Like…like 'us'? Ya mean…ya can do somethin' too!" She takes a few deep breaths in. "Wow, one moment I only know of one other who can do somethin', an' then al of the sudden I move to New York an' I meet a few more people!" She shakes her head in amazement, a look of relief on her face. "Did…did Nima's parents have abilities? Does /Nima/ have an ability?" She furrows her brows. "I had noticed the sections sorted by superpower. I thought it strange at first, but didn't really wanna say nothin' 'bout it."

Kory grins. "Yeah. I can," she confirms. "And I feel the same way. I spend my whole life in White Plains. I come to the city and — bam! All of a sudden I'm meeting people left and right who give a new meaning to the word 'gifted'." She reaches over and clasps KeLyssa's arm, in concern the woman might need to sit down. "Nima's parents have no abilities. And as far as I know, no. Nima doesn't seem to have any abilities either." Her twin brother Lee, on the other hand? "And, while Ma and Pa Jones did not seem to have abilities, they thought comics would attract people with gifts. Which they are. A few people have popped in, looking for …owner's manuals, if you will. I'd planned to tell you, but things have been so crazy."

KeLyssa does lean on the desk a little. "Ya know…my brother can do somethin' too. He's my twin, ya see. The older of the two of us. He uh…he can create and manipulate fire." She sighs. "This is a lot. Ya see…the reason I asked about Suresh is I wanted to find 'im, ya know? See if he could help." She shakes her head. "Why'd they wanna attract those with abilities if they didn't have none and Nima doesn't have one?" She frowns. "It don't make sense. How'd they know about those like us?"

Kory glances at the bust of William Shakespeare on the bookshelf. The one that looks like it used to belong on the set of the old 1960s Batman show. "They believed what Suresh believed, far as I can tell. And decided to set out trying to find people to prove their theories. Only …their rockers? They were a little off 'em. At least, Lee thinks so." She won't violate Lee's privacy by describing how far off the rocker they were.

KeLyssa nods a little. "I…suppose that makes sense." She looks around, shaking her head. "This is all so much!" She looks down. "Abilities, powers, plenty of us around…I just don't know. What's going on? Why is this happenin' to us?" She sighs. "Ever wonder what it'd be like to have a normal life?" She says with a small coy smile.
"I've been the way I am since I was just a baby," Kory says with shrug. "So I didn't know I was weird until I started being around other kids. I only sleep an hour or two a night, usually, and that weirds people out." She shrugs. "I don't know that I'd give this up. If it wasn't for weirdness, and the people who can do strange things — my life would just be books and studying."

KeLyssa nods a little bit at that. "To be honest with ya, Kory, even with mine, my life is still mostly books and studyin' with a li'l room for guys, friends, and work." She smiles. "Well…I guess more than not now, it's work an' guys." She grins. "But really…sometimes I wonder. If it hadn't been for all this." She says, waving her arms around to indicate the greater scheme of things, "I probably would've stayed down there in Louisiana."

"Oh really?" Kory asks. "What brought you to New York, then?" she asks, turning toward the door again, so as to get them headed back out so the guys don't kill each other.

KeLyssa shrugs and sighs. "I wanted to learn more 'bout myself. See if I could learn more 'bout why this was happenin' to me." She explains. "Looks like I'm gettin' slowly an' slowly closer to the answer eh? At least a li'l bit."

"Looks like," Kory agrees. "Just watch your step, okay? Because my understanding is that there are those out there who'd like to — well, you read much Steven King?" Comparison to The Shop oughta scare KeLyssa if she has.

KeLyssa smiles a bit, nodding. "Don'tcha worry, Boss Lady. I'll try'n be careful. Anyway, I got Dani to stop anyone big an' bad for me." She giggles, nodding to the question. "Mmhmmm. I've read a bit o' Stephen King. Why?"

"Big and bad is one thing, hon," Kory says solemnly. "But big and bad and having powers like ours is another. You remember The Shop?" The guys who wanted to turn cute little towheaded Charlie into a weapon, and kill her and her dad if they couldn't make her do it? Yeah. Like that. But Kory leaves the conversation there and steps out of the office.

KeLyssa smiles a little at that. She knows a little something about Dani, but she's not going to splurg. That is his own little secret. "Yeah…I remember 'The Shop'…" She says as the realization hits her. "Ya mean…they're those out there, a group like them?" She seems astonished, shaking her head in disbelief. "I'm goin' to be sure to be careful then." She says, following Kory out the shop.

"Good," Kory tells KeLyssa, nodding. She's pleased the other woman picked up her meaning. "Sorry, took us longer than a minute," she apologizes to the guys. Fortunately they seem to still be more or less settling along well enough and haven't blown the place up or anything like that.

KeLyssa puts on a wide smile as she exits the office. "How're ya'll doin' out here? Ya'll need anythin'? Just give us a shout if ya'll do." She grins as she walks up to the front. "Well, I'm glad we had this li'l talk, Kory. It was 'bout time it did."

"It was," Kory agrees. "And now you know all the ins and outs of the store that are mine to tell ya." She pauses, thoughtfully. It'd be just like Lee to not have told Nima what was going on with the back room. But that, not hers to tell either. "If you're gonna stay for the long haul, least I could do was make sure you know all the inner workings." She is delighted that KeLyssa now trusts her enough to go from Boss Lady to Kory, but makes no mention of it, lest KeLyssa resume the winceworthy nickname.

KeLyssa smiles a little. "Well, I'm glad to know that. I'd hate to be out of the loop." She giggles. "So, how's the dog sittin' goin'? He ain't causin' ya no problems, is he?" She smiles happily.

"Nah. He's a good boy, Ickle Ronniekins is." Baby talk voice, she can't help it, when talking to or about the dog. Ronnie recognizes the tone and looks around contentedly. "But his humans baby him, and they're in St. Croix until Monday or Tuesday. They didn't want him to be lonely. Plus, he might get destructive if he's lonely."

KeLyssa grins a bit. "I ain't never had a dog growin' up. Though I imagined it'd be nice. Dogs are good animals, great companions…so I head." She says with a shrug. She looks over the counter and down at Ickle Ronniekins. "Did ya hear us talkin' bout ya?"

"Depends on the dog and the person, I guess," Kory allows. "I never had a dog growing up either. My dad promised me one when I turned thirteen, but it didn't work out as hoped." She shrugs. "Trivet's more spoiled than IckleRonniekins is, but Trivet's also got a richer human."
KeLyssa grins ever so slightly, nodding. "I suppose you're right." She shrugs, turning around and leaning on the counter, elbows resting on it.

Kory shivers, coming out of the office, with a questioning look at KeLyssa. She shakes her head, refusing several offers of 'you can wear my jacket' from the gamer guy peanut gallery. "Chivalrous, but thank you, guys, I think we can afford to turn up the thermostat just a notch or two." Ickle Ronniekins is asleep behind the counter, nose poking out. The Lair's own dog, Chewbacca, is asleep across the door to the office, and Kory had to step over him to come back out when she opened the door.

There's something to be said about a teenage girl who just wants to be noticed. All teenage girls want attention, even if they deny it, and Portia is no different. And yet, all teenage girls also feel invisible to the world. No one knows they exist, proverbially. Unfortunately for Portia, it was also literally.

Sure, the day had started out alright, but things just hadn't quite gone according to plan. Frustrated and upset, the girl fell back to what she knew… drowning herself out from the world and living through other people. So, for a bad day, she decides to surround herself with freaks of nature like herself. The comic book characters. Plus there really was nowhere else that felt quite as safe as the Secret Lair when it came to places other than home or school that she could just stay at for a good number of hours.

So the door opens, just a little. Perhaps it was the wind. The sensor to alert the workers to new customers goes off with an odd little flash of light. Perhaps that was a mistake as well?

KeLyssa grins at all the nerds, geeks, and other…'lovers' of the many genres the store doth hold. "Ya know, Kory, I really do like workin' here. It help I ain't bothered by the late nights when I'm closin' after One in the mornin'. It's all good." She smiles. "Can't thank ya enough, really, for hirin' me here." She chuckles to herself. "My brother nearly choked on his drink when I called 'im an' told him the kinda place I got a job at." She has a little twinkle in his eye. "This would be his dream job if he weren't afraid o' what his friends'd think."

You have to be careful about doing strange things in front of Randall - because he's looking for strange things, whether they're actually there or not. And in this case, they actually are. Catching the door just as it begins to swing shut behind the invisible Portia, he squints and looks around, at the same time reaching back to push the door closed again more quickly. Which carries the extra benefit of keeping the influx of cold air to a minimum.

Gareth sneers at KeLyssa's remark. "A gamer, a fanboy — in the closet? Not worth the name. We few are a proud brotherhood." He grabs a handful of cheezcurls and stuffs them into his mouth, chewing as though they had wronged him somehow before being made edible. One or two of the guys sitting with him, including Professor Neckbeard, murmur agreement.

Kory gives a strained smile, and turns to check the door. But her confusion about the malfunctioning door is immediately blown away by delight at seeing, "Randall!" She doesn't quite rush in slow motion to fling herself into his arms. She moves gently, carefully, to hug him as if he might break. "How are you?"

The invisible girl has, at this point, quickly moved out of the way so as not to allow anyone to trample her inadvertantly. Portia moves to try and find a quiet spot to just sit and watch people.. and hopefully find one where she won't get stepped on. She notices the dogs, however, and bites her lip. This could be troublesome. She chooses an empty aisle for now, watching people to take care that she's not bumped into.

KeLyssa was curious about the door opening and the nobody there thing, but Kory seems to have distracted her by pointing out Randall's arrival. She smiles and does a little finger wave to him. "Hey Randall. How're ya doin'?" She leaves the nobody door opener for now, pushing that off to the side of her mind for a little.

Randall is suitably distracted by Kory's approach; he doesn't forget the anomalous entrance either, but there are more immediate concerns to attend to. "Hey, Kory, how are you?" he asks, drawing her in for a hug and blinking. Why's she treating him like he's got a nasty sunburn?
Kory kisses Randall very gently, but nonetheless warmly. "It occurred to me after yesterday evening at the diner, you might be feeling a little under the weather," she tells Randall, frowning up at him with worry, looking into his eyes. Pupils don't seem overdialated, though. "Migraine?"

The man who goes by Gareth this week doesn't miss the invisible entrance, though it of course pales in his attention to Randall's entrance. Kory's fawning all over the man and he seems confused? His expression clearly indicates the man must be out of his mind to not simply bask in the euphoria of her affections.

It's hard for the invisible girl not to giggle as she notes Randall and Kory's strange romantic interactions. However, she manages to restrain herself as she watches everyone and everything carefully. She's already had bad interactions with people catching her while invisible before, and she's not about to let it happen again. She does pause to glance at the collection of nerds curiously.. after all, she /is/ a teenaged girl.

KeLyssa lets Kory and Randall go about their little interactions and goes around the store, fixing stuff up and restocking. At sight of Gareth, the gamer boy, she smiles, stopping by the table that he and a few others are at. "Don't take it too hard, alright, hun? There're other fish in the sea. There'll be one for ya 'round some time. Okay?"

Randall returns Kory's kiss, pleasantly oblivious of the daggers that Gareth is glaring at him. He's gotten used to the gamers in general rolling eyes at him for being That Guy. "No, why? Like I said, the place where I was set up was warm enough, plus I've got extra layers handy if I need them."

And if the geeks in here knew there was a real life Invisible Girl? She'd have all the male attention she wanted and then some. Thankfully, the dogs remain asleep. Well, one does. Ickle Ronniekins gets up and greets Randall. "Qudditch," she says. The ears and tail droop, and he returns to the spot he was lying in. Bad doggie.

"No, no, later in the day," Kory says, quietly. "Around the time we had dinner? That …vision issue of yours wasn't bugging you? Your sight's okay, then? Good." She drops the subject, though, since he seems to be all right, though she remains looking worried just the same.

Oh, now Randall and Kory are getting interesting to the invisible girl. Portia peers towards them curiously, trying to listen in a bit. Too suspicious. That or they could be whispering sweet nothings or something and that could be interesting too. She glances towards Ickle Ronniekins, half-tempted to go pet the dog but restrains herself again. There rules about the Invisibility Club. First rule is you don't talk about it. Second is you don't try to interact with anything while you are. Causes too many problems.

KeLyssa heads up to the front of the store again. Placing a hand each on the lovebirds' shoulders, she whispers, "Hey Kory? Can I leave work early today? I've got some things I need to do."

Randall still looks kind of confused, but any further questions he might have thrown into the mix are cut short by KeLyssa's approach. "Oh, hey!" Oh, hey, someone's watching him. If only he knew. "I'll be back in a minute, all right?" With that, he disengages and heads toward the nearest aisle— straight toward Portia, as it turns out, though he doesn't know that.

Kory takes a minute to stroke Randall's cheek gently. His eyes track her fingers well enough. Yep, girl reads medical books too in her copious, copious spare time. "Okay, love," she says quietly. "Hmm?" She turns to look at KeLyssa. "Okay, sure. Go on. It's quiet enough that it won't be a big deal, I don't think."

Oh. Shit. Incoming at ten o'clock! InvisiPortia backs up, making sure to try and get out of the way. She doesn't want to bump into him, after all, and she quickly moves to exit the aisle the other way. Hopefully she's not intercepted there, too.

KeLyssa smiles and nods at Kory. "Thanks, Kory. I owe ya one." She says happily. Waving to Randall, she says, "See ya later." Likewise to gamer boys.

Randall slows up and waves back to KeLyssa, which is a good thing for Portia because otherwise he might have caught her with an elbow. As it is, he continues looking around at that somewhat-too-fast pace, but heading the opposite direction from his unseen target. After a brief stop to actually look at the latest Groo #1, he circles around to rejoin Kory. "So… him or her? Or both? No, wait, better not tell me unless they're cool with it."

Kory watches Randall make a quick circuit of the store, then beams at him when he returns. He's so quick witted. "We can talk about it later," she tells him. "The important thing is you're all right." She quirks a brow at Randall, tilts her head like a kitten. "Ickle Ronniekins," she says. "Wronski Feint."

The mastiff gets up, and begins walking up and down the aisles, lifting his paws high like a show dog. He does pause at the table of men gaming, though, and gives them puppy eyes. "Ah-ah-ah!" Kory shouts. "Dobby! Dobby!" The dog resumes walking the aisles.

Oh no you didn't. Portia might be watching out for people running into her, but she knows something's up. The dog is wandering the aisles, Randall did a route around the store, and now the game is on. Someone's trying to find her there, and Portia's not about to allow it. Moving to another aisle as Ickle Ronniekins moves through the store, she carefully creeps towards the door. It was getting too dangerous for an invisible girl!

Randall nods to Kory. "Yeah, sure thing." He grins as he starts to get the hang of Ronnie's voice commands, but tries to keep a straight face about the covert search in progress. Mostly he looks equally pleased that Kory seemed to pick up so quickly on what he was doing, which should at least change up Gareth's list of things to grump about.

Gareth is, at the moment, trying very hard to forget Randall's in the room. Which means, at the moment, he is also not enjoying the sight of the lovely vision Kory. He's just huddling over his Deadlands book, since the rest of his game group has broken up and wandered off to do other things in the store.

Kory beams at Randall, and then turns to see Cam. "Cam! Happy New Year, hon!" She spins and smooches him on the forehead. Gareth catches sight of that and scowls. Two males who get Korylove. None are him. How unfair the world. How cruel. "Hell," he mutters to himself.

Again, Portia finds herself in a very awkward position. She careens out of the way of Cam's incoming entrance and Kory's responsive move to kiss him on the forehead, which in turn means she ends up on her ass… unfortunately bumping into a display of comics, which upsets them.

Cam smiles just a bit at Kory's greeting, giving her a quick hug. Before he can say anything, though, the mysteriously falling display catches his attention. He blinks, "What…I didn't do that, did I?"

As the books start to fall, Randall starts, shaking off his private thoughts and checking out the path between himself and the display. Looks clear, so he starts toward it, reaching his hands out to try to catch it before it goes completely. Normal human instinct is ahead of look-for-weirdness instinct here; it's only halfway along the way that he realizes 'wait a minute, I may be about to trip over an—"

"I don't think so," Kory says to Cam, and calls "Slughorn!" at the dog. He sits where he is, right beside where Randall was standing before he went to catch the display. "Randall, you don't have to pick it up. I can do it." She doesn't move, though. She's willing to let the books fall and go into the community read pile. It's not going to make that big a mess.

InvisiGirl scrambles for under a nearby table of books, but she doesn't make it. Not with Randall the Mystery Chaser right on her tail. As Randall reaches down, his hand makes contact with Portia's leg. Of course, the girl is still scrambling to get under the table, which means Randall is going to end up in quite a heap.

Cam bites his lip a moment as he looks at the falling display, but shrugs a little and looks back up to Kory again, of course not realizing what's going on over there. "Niki's missing. She went to some meeting the other day and didn't come home."

Meanwhile, Randall leans down, reaching for the display with one hand and the floor with the other. "No, it's okay, I've got—" Wait, what has he got? Still acting mostly on instinct, he moves his hand away, promptly losing his balance and bringing the rest of the display down on his head. Enjoy it while it lasts, Marshal Gareth.

Kory's eyes go wide. "What??" She gasps, immediately concerned. "Are you and Micah okay? You guys have somebody looking after you?" Probably not; Cam's used to taking care of himself. She wrinkles her nose pensively. There are two people she can think to call. "Do you know the number or the address where she was going?" For the moment, the peculiar events involving Randall and the book rack are forgotten.

The guy with the expression of painful ennui looks over at Kory with a soft expression. Little boy lost, and she's immediately coming to the rescue. Siiiiiiigh. And then, the book rack goes down, with Randall underneath, and he has to choke back the guffaws. Fortunately, several other geeks respond in time-honored fashion: they begin to applaud. That knocks Kory back to thinking of the store. "Omigod, Randall! Cam, stay right there, okay, and we'll talk in a minute." The rack wasn't that big or heavy, but still. He could be hurt. She rushes to move the rack off him.

Squirming to get under the table, Portia knows Randall's on to her. There's no way he couldn't have figured it out. He was suspicious before. So she instead hides under the table, hoping he doesn't figure out /where/ she is. After all, she could have gotten up and hid somewhere else in the store. She is, momentarily distracted when Cam mentions the missing woman. Oh, dear.. that's not so good.

Cam shrugs a bit to Kory, "Monica's there. Mostly for Micah." He starts to answer her latter question too, but when the rack falls he quiets and nods, letting her deal with it.

Randall turns partway around, keeping the rack lifted up enough for Kory to get a handle on it. "I'm okay, I think." Apart from a minor cut on his hand, which some direct pressure easily takes care of. "How long's she been gone?" he asks, looking around and focusing on Cam.

Kory sighs with relief. She resists the urge to kiss Randall, instead going behind the counter for an antibac wipe and a band-aid. "Okay, Monica's there," she echoes. "Good. Do you need anything anyway? Have you called the police already?" It's the only useful thing she could do, and it might not even need to be done. She holds out the first aid stuff for her boyfriend.

Gareth, who looks at his watch, glances up doe-eyed at Kory, through his hair. "See, there. A cross between Sailor Mercury and Clara Barton." The person who made a Belldandy/Florence Nightengale comparison about KeLyssa a day or two ago sulks.

Cam answers Randall, "A couple of days now." He looks back up to Kory and bites his lip, shaking his head. "Monica might have, but I haven't. If they know, it'll just be something more for them to use to try to take Micah away. And they'd probably take me to another foster home right away, before I could help find her."

Randall winces at the antibacterial treatment. "Geez, teach me not to complain about Listerine stinging." Biting his lip, he looks up and over at Cam as he explains his situation, and thus misses getting sucked into the name-a-chick debate over at the gaming table.

"Don't be a baby, it doesn't sting that—" Kory was starting to affectionately tease Randall as she dabs Betadine on him, but then Cam mentions why the police haven't been brought into the equation. The color goes out of Kory's face at the idea of the police using Monica being possibly kidnapped or lying dead in a ditch somewhere as a reason to take Micah away. She sinks into her chair behind the counter, and murmurs, "Quidditch." The big mastiff shoulders against Cam slightly, by way of doggy support. Then he comes around to lie at Kory's feet. "God, sometimes I just hate the world."

Gareth looks expectantly at Randall. She's hurting, you idiot may as well be printed out in block letters with Sharpie pen on her face.

Portia sits under the table. For at least another few moments. Then she slowly emerges, tiptoeing towards the door. She's planning on sneaking out, then returning when she's not invisible. That would cause less problems and less cuts for poor Randall. Hopefully.

Cam nods a little to Kory, biting his lip, petting the dog as it shoulders him. He then says, "I dunno what to do. I thought maybe I should ask Hiro or Peter for help."

Randall is not completely clueless; he does move behind Kory and, after sparing the bandage a quick glance, rest his hands on her shoulders. Primary concern goes to Cam, though, as he's the one most directly involved. The invisible whoever-it-was will have to wait till later. "I used to hear horror stories about Child Protection Services back home— are they bad around here, too? Anyway, you're right, somebody needs to get on top of that ahead of time. And where'd you say she was going? Maybe if we retrace the route, we can spot something."

Kory's head comes up. "Hiro? Hiro's a good idea." She looks a little more hopeful. "But…" and the wind leaves her sails, "Hiro's looking for his father. I don't even know if he's still in New York." It was in 9th Wonders.

And to Randall, she nods. "Yeah. They are. Overcrowded. Overworked. And under attack." She doesn't even get into how Cam's social worker was murdered in the fall. She looks up at Randall; he's willing to play detective to help Cam?

Gareth pinches the bridge of his nose, torn between happiness that Kory's happy again, and agony that Randall seems to be permanently ensconcing himself into her heart.

It's a moment more and suddenly the sensor goes off again and the door opens and shuts. Weird wind that's blowing these days.

Cam looks back up to Randall at that last question and gives a little shrug, "I dunno. I mean, I know she went to see Doctor Suresh. But, dunno where he is. He drives a taxi so not sure if he's got an office or anything."

Randall scratches at his chin. "Suresh— that doesn't sound too common. You know his full name? Maybe the phone book's got his home address." Play detective? He was born to play detective. In a… non-professional-investigator sort of way.

The name Suresh snaps Kory's eyes open wide. "I thought Chandra Suresh was dead," she murmurs, staring curiously at Cam. Her expression goes pensive. Funnily enough, KeLyssa had just mentioned a Dr. Suresh earlier. She makes a mental note to tell her friend. "Couldn't hurt to check," she agrees.

Cam shakes his head quickly to Kory, "Not Chandra Suresh. Mohinder. Dunno if they're related." He looks up to Randall again but he just nods since he just mentioend the man's first name. "Maybe… dunno. Didn't think to look."

Randall snaps his fingers. "I thought it sounded kind of familiar." He does have a copy of Chandra's book, but due to his unusual mindset, it just got filed away somewhere in the B pile. "Lemme check," he says, heading behind the counter and looking around for a copy of the white pages.

"By the way? Rosario Dawson." This is directed at Gareth, as he flips pages. "I haven't worked out the 'meets' part, but then she doesn't really need it, does she?"

Kory plucks her cellphone out of a pocket. "Too rare a name to not at least check," Kory agrees with Randall. "But was Niki going to meet him at his home, or someplace else?" She wonders aloud to Cam as she dials.

"Rosario Dawson?" Gareth is surprised to be addressed by the one who is apparently Kory's Chosen. "What…what about her?" he stammers, still regarding Randall with a sullen glower.

PHONE: Kory dials the number 283-0163. It begins to ring.
PHONE: The other end answers, "Hello?"
PHONE: Kory says, "Hey. KeLyssa. It's Kory. The funniest thing happened. We've got a friend missing, and she was on her way to see a Dr. Suresh. Not Chandra. But a guy named Mohinder. Who drives a cab. But is also a doctor. I know it's a wicked coincidence, but I figured you'd wanna know anyway. Because, what are the chances, right?"
PHONE: KeLyssa says, "Yeah…that's…that is strange. Actually, to be honest. I had heard that Dr. Chandra Suresh had a son… wouldn't happen to know exactly /where/ your friend was going to meet with this Mohinder, would ya?"

Cam shrugs a bit to Kory and says, "Dunno. Micah might know, but he didn't say. Didn't think to ask." He quiets as she makes the phone call, glancing between her and Randall.

Randall's only answer to Gareth is an impish grin. He's too busy with the phone book, anyway, carrying it over toward Cam and pointing out the guy's home number. "Well, if it was a home visit, then you should be able to reach him here." He offers a cell phone, unless Cam's got
one of his own.

PHONE: Kory is silent for a moment. If KeLyssa listens she can hear Cam's voice briefly in the background. "Not yet. Randall's here, checking the white pages to see if we can at least get a phone number and ask if she actually made it to the meeting…and Randall just found a number. Hang on."

PHONE: KeLyssa sighs, listening. "Whose that in the background?" She asks curiously. "A phone number?" Her interest is obviously even more perked now.

Cam does indeed have a cellphone, but he nods, "Thanks." He pulls out the beaten up little phone from his pocket, and dials the number Randall's supplied. After a bit he makes a face, "No answer."

PHONE: Kory says, softly, "That was Cam. It's his foster mom who was on her way to see Dr. Suresh, and who didn't come back. He's gonna try calling now. Cross your fingers." A pause, and she sighs. "He didn't get an answer, but the number is at least in the white pages."

Randall nods to Cam and puts his own phone back away. "Did he have an answering machine? At least you can call him back now, if not." The idea that Dr. Suresh would also have been kidnapped hasn't occurred to him yet.

PHONE: KeLyssa sighs. "Do…do you think ya could pass off his number to me? Maybe I could try givin' 'im a call? It don't hurt to have more'n one person, right? Plus, I don't want nothin' to happen to 'er, 'specially not with a kid she's lookin' after."

PHONE: Kory pauses a moment, listening to KeLyssa. "Sure, of course. Here you go." She passes along the number Randall found in the White Pages. "Niki's a nice woman. I wouldn't wish this on anyone, but least of all her. She tries so hard. But hey, getting the word out can't help. The more people know, the more can look. I should jet. I need to run Cam off some flyers, maybe." She's obviously worried and wanting to help in any way, no matter how small.

PHONE: KeLyssa can be heard riffling through a drawer to get paper and a pen, thus to write down the number. "Thank ya, Kory. Oh…and what does Niki look like? Maybe I can keep an eye out for 'er?"
Cam shakes his head to Randall and says, "If he's got one it wasn't answering." He nods quickly then and says, "I'll keep calling him back."

PHONE: Kory says, quietly, "You're welcome, Lyssa. Oh, Niki? She's really tall. And blonde. She looks kind of like that lady from the first Final Destination movie, if you saw that, now that I think about it… If you read 9th Wonders, Isaac Mendez did a really good likness of her."

PHONE: KeLyssa speaks softly now, "Of course. Well…I'll keep my eye out for 'er, an' I'll let ya know as soon as I find anythin', okay?"
While the others man the phones, Randall heads toward the back of the store, scrawling down something on the whiteboard where the gamers post their requests. He's got no other ideas for the moment, until more information is brought to light.

PHONE: Kory sighs, tiredly. "Thanks, Lyss. The more heads we have on this one, the better, I think. If Hiro comes into the shop, would you mention it to him?" She pauses to consider, how to describe the enthusiastic Otaku. "Japanese guy, tends to wear his hair way spiked out in front. Square frame glasses. Really, really enthusiastic."
PHONE: KeLyssa speaks lightly, "Yes, of course. Hiro…I've heard mention of him before I think. But I'll be sure to remember to mention to him. I doubt I'll miss him. Take care of Cam."

Cam follows Randall after another try, and then says, "Thanks for helping me." He still holds the phone, but isn't making another try right away.

PHONE: Kory gives a soft breath of frustration, not directed at anything but the stress of the situation. "I will. You take care too. And you take care of yourself, too. That group we were speaking about earlier? They might be involved. I'm gonna run. Ronnie needs walkies. Later."

Randall returns to the front, making a face as he looks from Kory to Cam. "So what'd she say, other than she'd help put the word out? And you said - Monica - wasn't answering calls either, or just that the police wouldn't count her as a guardian?"

"Not much," Kory confesses to Randall. "She mostly was interested in whether this Dr. Suresh is related to the one from the book. But she promised to get the word out, and tell Hiro if she sees him before I do. It's not much, but it's better than nothing. I wonder if Matt can intervene with the authorities…"

Cam shakes his head quickly to Randall, "She lives at the house too. She owns it, actually. But they were gonna take Micah before, and she was still there."

Randall rolls his eyes. "That's so typical. She's old enough and responsible enough to own a house, but they still don't trust her with a kid? Intervention definitely sounds like a good idea." Good thing the others seem a little better connected than he is.

"That's not the only thing they take into account, hon," Kory says. "Her income, what her schedule's like. Among other things that don't make any sense. And they will disregard what Micah's wishes are, go figure." She shrugs into her coat, suddenly antsy. She grabs the box of tea that 'Gareth' gave her. It may not help her sleep, but it may at least burn off some of her nervous energy. "C'mon, Ickle Ronniekins. Chocolate Frog." The dog bounds over, eagerly. Walkies. She hasn't forgotten her concern for Randall, but her frustration at the Niki situation has taken main spot. "Ninth Wonders…maybe it has something about what happened to Niki in it?" She hands Randall the leash and walks over, to begin flipping through the issues.

Cam shrugs a bit to Randall and says, "The only reason they had for takin' Micah away from Niki was that she accidentally took the wrong pills one day and had to go to the hospital. Only happened once." He looks up to Kory again and says, "Hiro's got all of Micah's 9th Wonders. But if there was something in there, wouldn't he have said something?"

"Maybe," Kory agrees, deflating. "Unless it looked like something different without what we know now to make that part of the story make sense?" She sinks into a chair next to Gareth. Gareth pats her hand awkwardly. "Thanks," she tells him with a wan smile as she lets the comic fall closed on the table.

Randall takes the leash, watching Ronnie closely, as he isn't trained up on dealing with this sort of thing either. "Depends— Micah might not have the full run, either. Or even if he does, maybe Hiro hasn't had time to read through them all." He wanders cautiously over to the display and begins one-handed leafing through the issue behind the one that Kory picked up, leaning his stomach against the display to keep it propped open.

Cam nods to that and then smiles a little again, "Ok, thanks." He nods and says, "I know I haven't read all of them. But think Micah had them all."

"Well, worse to worst, Cam," Kory suggests, "We end up no worse off than we are now. But any chance that could help is at least worth trying. Between this and multi-dialing Dr. Suresh, maybe we'll get lucky enough to get a hot lead."

Randall turns another page - then, forgetting himself, lets go the leash and holds the book up with both hands. "We need to talk to Micah himself!" he says. It takes a lot to weird him out… but seeing a picture of himself doing and saying these very things, that manages it.

Cam blinks at that and says, "Um.. ok. Dunno where he is now, but he's probably at home. Can take you there and see?" He looks curiously to the comics. He'd stepped towards one himself, but stops now.
Kory gets to her feet, remembering she was on the way out. She retrieves the box of tea, and takes the leash back from Randall as he drops it. She blinks and glances at the page. "Ah." Yeah, that's weird to experience. Kory's familiar with the sensation. "That might be why nobody's said anything if that one panel was just out there like that."

She presses a key into Randall's newly free hand. "I'm gonna take Ronniekins walkies, and then head back to my place." She ruffles Cam's hair. "You know you're welcome to swing by anytime you want. Or call if you need anything, right?"

Gareth gets to his feet as well, trying to hide the wince as Kory hands Randall the key. "You need somebody to walk you home, Kory?" he asks.

Okay, moment of strange loopiness past. Randall sets the comic book down again, rubbing his eyes, then closes his fingers around the key as Kory hands it to him. "I guess you're right… there's kind of a Fletcher and Tanya vibe to the whole thing, if the book's all you have to go on."

As Gareth speaks up, he turns, focusing more closely now. "I think we've got it covered," he says: if she were that rattled, she would have asked him, surely? The 'Randall is suffering migraines' thing got cleared up earlier. But if he really does want to help deal with the missing-person issue, and not just fanboy over Kory… "But could you ask your group to help keep an eye out for that Hiro guy? In case he comes in and whoever's on shift is tied up with something."

"Yeah. Okay. We can do that," Gareth replies, nodding. The kid's important to Kory; that makes the kid's plight important enough for him to pay attention to. "I'll make sure somebody in the game group knows and passes it along." Of course, being unable to walk Kory home has put a small scowl on his face.

Kory glances over her shoulder at Randall, to see if he's coming with after all. "If you want to keep brainstorming with Cam, you can always swing by when you're done," she tells Randall. And belatedly, to Gareth. "Thanks, Leslie." She's distracted enough to forget to use his preferred moniker. 'Gareth' cringes and glowers at his fellows as they snicker at him.

Cam nods to Kory and says, smiling again, "I know. Thanks." He looks over to Gareth, adding his own, "Thanks." Then he looks back up to Randall and Kory, "It's ok. I can go talk to Micah and let you know what he says?"

Randall picks up the 9th Wonders issue and offers it to Cam. "Yeah, show him this, too? Or give him the issue number, he might already have it." Meeting Kory's gaze, he scratches his head, then holds up the key. "Er, did you want me to lock up early, or is KeLyssa heading back?" Lord knows they can't just let Leslie have free run of the place. At least he's polite enough not to join in the snickering until after he's out of the guy's presence.

KeLyssa has arrived.

Kory facepalms. "Good call," she sighs. "Too many irons in the fire and—" Whoa. Speak of the Devil. "KeLyssa. I've gotta walk Ronnie, and then wind down with some of …Gareth's tea, I think. Can I beg you to close up?"

Cam takes the comic as Randall hands it to him and nods, "Yeah, sure. He won't have it there, Hiro's got all his, but I'll show him this one." He looks up curiously to the new arrival as Kory greets her.
KeLyssa enters in, walking casually but with obvious concern on her face. She smiles only ever slightly to Kory. "Oh…yeah. Sure. Will do, Kory. I hope the tea helps ya with your unwindin', boss lady…" She lets that hang in the air for a moment. She puts on a bit bigger of a smile for Cam. "Ah, ya must be Cam, that Kory told me 'bout o'er the phone. M'name's KeLyssa." Her southern accent quite obvious.

Randall smiles brightly at KeLyssa. "You're a lifesaver! Thanks." Nodding to Cam, he moves to follow Kory outside. "So is this a store key, or—" The other likely possibility, he doesn't mention out loud, instead lowering his voice to a near-whisper. "Leslie? No wonder he keeps making up his own."

To say Kory is grateful that Randall can leave with her would be to make a vast understatement. "Or," she tells him quietly, as they walk out, letting him know it's the other likely possibility. The door has closed after them by the time her expression changes from sympathetic smile to sheepish laughter.

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