Oct 15, 2019 12:37 AM
imrainai marries billionaire!lev because pauline has exactly one solution for every problem ever
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She's a bad liar anyway. Also, hey, not actually trying to pass through this process, so it'll be super convenient when her honest answers cause them to filter her out!

"OK! Thanks so much."

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"It's really in your best interest too. If we know the truth about you, we're far likelier to make a good match, and then you'll get paid for much longer."

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"That absolutely makes sense," she says, seriously, after deciding not to comment on how absurd the idea of mostly caring about compatibility with your spouse for the sake of getting paid by them is.

...she will just have to think about whether it's still prostitution if you're married later, after she's been filtered out and it's a purely academic question.

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"Okay, then, let's get started!"

She asks Karen a bunch of easy questions about her life to get her settled and build rapport.

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She can answer questions! She doesn't lie at any point, although now that she's actually in an interview it's pretty hard to remember that she's trying not to pass it. She offers an accurate but particularly sympathetic report of the basics of her life, with occasional mild self-deprecation as a proof of modesty and lack of arrogance. That's not really calculated, she just sort of does that.

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Pauline is good enough at people to notice that!

Pauline is replaced by a man who wants Karen to recite strings of numbers backwards and tell stories based on pictures and guess what people's emotions are from their eyes. 

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Oddly accurate but very slow on the numbers, very creative and with excellent presentation on the stories, bad at emotions. Also convinced she's doing pretty badly at all of these. But that's OK because she isn't invested in the outcome.

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The man does not reveal how well she's doing!

She's shown into a different room. "We're going to take your pictures now, dearie," a woman wielding a makeup brush says. "You'll get to keep them afterward!"

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Neat! She has like zero pictures of herself of any sort. Don't think about the fact that they're going to be shown to weird rich people who can't get dates. (She really shouldn't throw stones there.)

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"Don't you worry about a thing," the makeup artist says, running the brush over Karen's cheekbones, "it's all about making you look your best."

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This is sort of weird and vaguely uncomfortable, but luckily you don't need to have complex opinions on things to sit still while other people make decisions about how your face should look. She thanks the makeup artist, though, she seems like she's doing her best.

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The makeup artist is definitely doing her best!

The photographer is really aggressively positive.

"You look great, sweetie! You're doing wonderfully! Smile for the camera!"

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This is also sort of weird and vaguely uncomfortable! But they all just seem so sincere about whatever it is they're doing. She will smile.

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The day wraps up with Karen being asked for an extensive number of work and personal references!

"Don't worry," Pauline assures her, "we take your privacy very seriously."

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She is not sure that she actually knows that many people. Maybe one of the librarians, maybe one of the old ladies from church whose house she cleans sometimes, maybe one of her coworkers at the nursing home, maybe maybe that elderly novelist who lives in the independent living unit? She should probably provide evidence of at least one friend who is not from the internet? Unfortunately she doesn't have contact info for any of her acquaintances from church, so she puts down one of her vaguely reasonable friends from high school who she's pretty actually went on to college and didn't commit any notable crimes or anything.

Good thing none of this matters!

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"See you tomorrow!" Pauline says with incredible cheeriness.

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She calls in sick to work again the next day and, again, arrives twenty minutes early.

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She spends the morning talking to Pauline and answering a bunch of extremely ridiculous questions. 

How lucky are you, and why? If you were an animal what animal would you be? What is your worst houseguest-related story? What is your least favorite thing about humanity? What would your ideal bedroom look like? How many square feet of pizza are eaten in the US every year? What's the most irrational reason you've liked someone? What insecurity do you have that would shock someone if they knew about it?

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Luck's not real but she feels like people are nicer to her than warranted, which is sort of the same thing as being lucky. She's technically an animal already but feels a sort of affinity for bees, because they work together and are unusually communicative and they make honey even though throwing up food for their young seems kind of unpleasant, and also it's sort of sad and poetic how they work themselves to death in like three weeks. Humans are really bad at doing things they know are good for them, which is maybe even sadder than if they didn't know at all. Probably small and cozy with a loft bed to hide in and some gaming posters on the wall, everything minimalist enough that it isn't hard to keep clean but not so empty that it looks bare. Probably like five hundred million, low confidence. She thinks it's sort of rational to like everyone, because everyone has good qualities, but she doesn't always succeed at this. 

She's pretty sure people who know her would not be shocked to hear that she was insecure about literally anything.

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Pauline smiles and says "hm" a lot and totally fails to reveal the purpose of the test or whether Karen is doing well on it. 

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Very convenient how it doesn't matter at all.

Answering random questions is sort of fun when you care nothing at all about the effects of your answers.

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"You'll get to leave a bit early this afternoon because you're Baptist!" Pauline says cheerfully.

(Karen did not at any point indicate that she was Baptist.)

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"Personally non-denominational, actually, but it's an easy mistake to make," she says, in favor of asking why this means she can leave early.

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"Oh, oops! Guess I'm not as good as I thought I was."

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"My parents are real Baptists, if it makes you feel better!"

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