Fair And Unfair

Title: Fair and Unfair
Who: Leigh and Linus'
When: July 31st, 2010
Where: Street Fair at the Legacy
What: There's a Street Fair, and Leigh's on 'avoidance duty' and recruits Linus to assist, which puts Linus in an odd 'in the middle' position.

===< The Legacy >----------< OOC|#86 >===

The Legacy was built over the last lingering traces of Los Angeles, and built into a massive homage to the memory of the old city. The very heart of The Legacy holds The Memorial, a monument to commemorate Los Angeles and San Diego both. The area is also home to all the trendy shops (and then some) that one could ever want. It is a fairly festive area of town hence the nickname 'Glitterville'.
The north side of the district is laid out like old LA in microsm, the south does the same for San Diego. The centerpiece of the area is The Memorial, a series of outdoor walkways in a huge park with commemorative walls erected with the names of the dead and missing from The Quake. Surprisingly the whole is done in a brilliantly tasteful manner that leaves few visitors to the site dry eyed for long.

Linus 0s OOC

Hollywood………………….<HW> Downtown…………………..<DT>
Financial District………….<FD> Kennedy Station…………….<KS>


The fireworks won't start til well after Sundown, and since it's Summer, that leaves said bright festivites to sometime around nine or ten o'clock. At the moment, that dark time is hours away, but that doesn't mean that the local festival for a charity isn't already in full swing. Smells permeate the crowd; food, strong drink (for the adults), and the rush of people moving to and from both food vendors and game attractions. Indeed, even a few are sporting different prizes of many sizes; stuffed animals, boxes of candy, assorted small cheap toys and the like. Kids tugs their parents around, teens hang around in packs for reasons of their own, an old couple shares a small bit of cotton candy, acting younger than their years.

Linus Tate lifts a hand to shield his eyes from the afternoon sun, as he watches the makeshift area that's been set aside, marked off by large truck tires, bright orange cones, and chalked patterns. The go-karts zip past, kicking up a small cloud of dust and smoke from the cheap engines, causing the young man to wipe his eyes.

Leigh Sunderland came with such a pack — a loose collective of boys and girls, the boys mostly claimed and the few girls who were not attached at the hip to one of the boys thus considered fifth wheels, to one degree or another. Eventually the group splintered, with the couples going off individually to do couple things in the shade beneath the nearest grandstand or behind some artificial bit of architecture, and the remaining trio of girls going from booth to booth and sampling low-calorie snacks and playing games. Leigh won herself a bright pink rabbit at one of these. It's got velcro on its front paws and now it's hanging about her neck, ears standing upright like antenna next to her pretty face.

Eventually this small group broke up as well, the other two girls deciding they wanted to see a movie and Leigh, grumbling faintly to herself, let them go. No movie theaters for the glowing girl. She's been wandering the fair on her own for awhile now, and a few moments ago she spied her nemesis, her arch-enemy, the one villain who makes her tremble in her totally stylin' pumps.

Robbie Butler.

She turned and walked briskly away, hoping he didn't see her. She's not sure if she was successful, but she spies Linus in the crowd and recognizes him from school, and this, she determines, is a way to save herself. She makes a beeline for him, bats her eyes winsomely and very quietly murmurs, "Play along. Please."

In his head, Linus is thinking about the unused tickets in his pocket, and considers taking a chance when there's time. It's a nice day, and he's calm, my himself, and enjoying things. A snack here, a lemonade there, some people watching when he felt he wouldn't be spotted; it's all good for him.

However, it all comes to a stop when the young man turns his head when someone speaks up near him.

Red eyebrows lift a bit as he takes that one brief moment to process what's going on. The slightly clueless look on his face says that he has no idea of the details, but he apparently knows who the dark-haired girl is. "Play?" he asks, cracking a grin. "Yeah, gotcha," he says, and attempts to guide her towards the entrance to the go-kart track. "I've got the tickets," he says, and the only move he'd make is an attempt to put an arm on her shoulders, play-acting.

Leigh allows this familiarity. She quietly offers up the suggestion that he might have won the rabbit for her, and then an additional word of thanks because honestly, if Robbie saw her here alone — and yes, she does mention the boy by name. "Go-karts?" she says, acting as well. Her eyes are wide, bright, excited, for all that Robbie may be in the vicinity. He needs to see that she's taken, for today at least, and that he should leave her the heck alone. "Oh, that's so cool! Thank you, Linus!" She practically gushes her gratitude. And she has tickets, herself, so he won't have to pay for her ride.

There's enough sense that Linue emits a flinch when the other boy's name comes up. "Robby?" He sighs, as he waits in line, faking small talk at Leigh's request. He glances around surreptitiously, just in case. "You know he's not that…" Linus pauses, pursing his lips. He's started counting uses of the 'F-word' during games of Counter-Strike. Which actually matches the number of times that 'his finger slipped' while packing the rocket launcher. "No, he is that bad," Linus says. "I'm sort-of his friend, and I should be defending him, but I've swabbed stuff out of my ears with more tact. I'm sorry." Apparently, he's apologizing for the other kid.

"No offense to you," says Leigh, and she -does- sound sorry to be saying it, "but your friend is a creep with a capital C. He's TOTALLY inappropriate. And I'm not sure he's actually human. He might be an evolved form of cockroach." That might be an insult to cockroaches. She's not sure. "He's been calling my house to ask me out. Over and over. I don't like being mean but at some point tact fails."

"None taken," Linus says in a low voice, breaking eye contact. "No, he's human. Human wants and needs, and he's…" He stops, surprised he's finding himself saying these things. "He's been picked on so much he thinks he's entitled." And it's striking him as he speaks to the 'other side' just how wrong this whole thing has gotten. "Damn," he says.

"It'd help," suggests Leigh calmly, looking away herself and scanning the crowd to make sure Robbie's not in sight — and especially not within earshot, "if he didn't think he were entitled to the things he thinks he's entitled to. I'm not allowed to date anyway, but even if I were, his idea of how to ask a girl out is lacking. Like, squickeningly lacking." She utters a sigh and relaxes as she concludes that she dodged a bullet. "Sorry to put you between me and your friend," she adds. "If he sees us, you don't have to say it's a date or anything."

It's at one sentence where Linus' attention is torn back to Leigh. Her apology. "No…look, I can try and talk to him, try and make him see some common sense he is so sorely lacking. If the other person's not interested…" He trails off for a bit. "They just aren't, you know?" They get closer to the track, in line. "Should talk to Larry Kim, too. You gotta wonder if the…nerdy folks like us aren't asking for it by just existing." Another pause. "But it puts me in a difficult spot. Your apology means a lot." It actually means Linus has underestimated her, but he doesn't actually say that.

Leigh is one of the popular girls, and she can be as self-centered and vain as any of them, but she's never deliberately hurtful. She doesn't play the games some of them do. She tries to be a nice person. She just doesn't always succeed. "Larry Kim's not so bad," she offers. "He stares a little, but, you know, if we really didn't want guys looking…" She shrugs. "Just 'cause you're geeky doesn't mean you're a bad person. No matter what some people say."

"Larry's a little better at hiding his own bitterness," Linus says, turning towards Leigh slowly. He's not angry, himself. "As for being a bad person…it's more about action than words. I can say I'm not a bad person, but that's lip service if I don't actually act like it." He glances over Leigh's shoulder, as if checking for someone, before shaking his head in silent confirmation that he doesn't see Robbie. "And I'm a geek. Just am. What happens to me's just the law of the jungle and all that."

Leigh bobs her head in acknowledgement — she gets the message. "Yeah, well," she says with a sigh, "the law of the jungle sucks sometimes." She grimaces faintly. She's not going to defend the idiots who play those games. Even if they're her best friends.

It's complicated, being a teenager.

"You might point out to Larry that he'd do a lot better if he didn't wear shirts until they're just, like, holes connected by webbing. Fishnet isn't really a good look for a guy."

"That, I can't help you with," Linus replies. "I'm not faulting anyone's style, no matter what. Especially if he's not hurting anyone, or skirting laws with it. Robbie, that's restraining order material, so that's different." He smiles, just a little. "I'm no fashionista, so I really can't judge." Though Linus' style edges towards prep-ish and casual, and pretty ordinary besides.

"I'm not trying to criticize," says Leigh, and then considers her own statement. "Well, I guess I am, but only 'cause those ratty old tee-shirts aren't getting him any dates. But Anna-Jean's totally into him." She pauses. "You didn't hear it from me, but, I mean, it couldn't hurt him to know he's got a shot with her, right?" Anna-Jean's not exactly in the in-crowd, but she's a nice enough girl anyway. In Leigh's opinion.

"Anna-Jean Raymond? Really?" Linus seems taken aback by that statement, but he's already storing this bit of info in his head for later reference. After all, the guys are coming over to his place to game tomorrow night. "I can always pass along a rumor or two, I guess," he says. Still, he watches Leigh for a moment, as if trying to figure out what her angle is. "But the choice is in his hands, at the bottom line. I make no promises for others."

"I'd hardly expect you to," says Leigh. "I just figure, he's gonna be happier if he's got a girlfriend, and maybe then he'll stop bugging Shannon Price, and then Shannon's boyfriend will stop giving him swirlies in the third floor bathroom." She shrugs. "Cause and effect. It's not all because Roy's a bully. He -is- a bully, but he generally has some thought process that leads to his… uh… antisocial acts…"

"And for those that aren't eyeing his girl," Linus responds with, a touch more edged than he actually intends. "Roy acquainted me with quite a few locker interiors last year." He backs down quick. "Law of the jungle. It happens." He's heard Larry Kim talk about Roy a little. Mostly that he's tired of having to look over his shoulder.

"You're Larry's friend," Leigh points out. "There's guilt by association. I'm not saying either of you deserves to be treated that way, but Roy has a logical chain of thought going on that leads him to these acts." She considers this for a moment, glancing around again, her ponytail flipping to her other shoulder. "Primitively logical," she says, "but logical in his Neanderthal kind of head."

"And I'll agree to disagree and not argue the lack of logic on my budding claustrophobic end," Linus adds, with a smile. Underestimaed is an an understatement. "I'll admit you give him a lot more credit than I would, but I'm not goint to bitch about that either." He plays around a little, scratching the bunny behind the ears. "Too much energy can be used resenting, or hating, that can be used for other things, right?"

"I give him credit because I see his good points," says Leigh. "You don't get the chance, what with his reaction to you involving lockers." She's lucky she's a girl — girls don't stuff each other in lockers. They're far nastier. But the whole glowing thing would make the locker stuffing particularly awkward. "He's a good boyfriend, even if he's incredibly jealous. He treats Shannon like a queen. It's not perfect, but she's not complaining." She turns her face toward Linus and smiles sunnily — her smile is a thing of beauty, really. "There's room for hate, but it's probably not productive." She's not going to comment further on Robbie at this point.

"Exactly," Linus answers, as some things are confirmed. The kids at school aren't 'good and evil' in absolute terms. A bullying jock is good to his girlfriend. A geek can be liked by someone not a geek. In other words, more things happen out of sight than anyone will ever know. On all sides. "Still want to do this," he asks, regarding the go-karts. "I think we lost him."

"I haven't been on go-karts since I was nine," says Leigh. "My family was visiting Prince Edward Island, and my brother and I went nuts on these things. I'm still in." She grins. "I've got my own tickets, though," she adds, displaying a wad of folded cardstock. "I can pay my own way." She waves toward the open gate. "After you."

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