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Oct 16, 2019 4:39 PM
Lianne and Kaylee in PMMM
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"I'd love to shadow your mom too if she wouldn't mind.  And - " she hesitates.  "You know you don't need to be an overachiever to be doing worthwhile things, right?"

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Slight smile. "Yeah, I know." Intellectually, at least. "And I'm sure she'd be fine with it. So, anyways, what're you taking later after lunch? We might have more classes together... I've got Spanish four, then English, then world history, and then gym last period."

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She produces a schedule.  "Hmm, I've got... English, math, orchestra, then, hey, gym too!"

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"Cool! It's usually pretty easy to hang out there - we have to do stretches and a run first, but then the rest of the period's usually free time. Oh, hey, we talked about clubs earlier - what sort of ones are you interested in? I pretty much just do anime club Tuesdays, scifi-fantasy Thursdays, then track the other afternoons. I don't think clubs are still advertising this late in the year, but we can ask around a bit."

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"Anime club sounds fun!  At my last school I was in yearbook and GSA - do you have a GSA here?  Do you think yearbook would let me join in halfway through the year?"

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"Probably?" She turns to one of her tablemates and confirms that yep, they have a GSA. Meetings Fridays in such-and-such room, they'll be glad to have her. "And I'm sure yearbook would be fine with you joining, too. If they're not, there's also the creative writing club - they do a literary magazine every year." 

Someone else speaks up to point out that the school website has an incomplete list she can check out.

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"Oooh, creative writing.  I might check them out even if yearbook does decide to have me.  Thank you!" she adds to the kid with the website recommendation.

Lunch starts to wrap up.  Folks begin disposing of their unfinished food, the murmur of the room alters in character.  "Looks like its time to go," Kaylee says.  "Thanks for the recommendations, Lianne!  I'll see you in gym!"

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"See you!"

And off to class.

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Classward!

*

The rest of the day's classes proceed well.  Gym, as promised, is a stretch and a run and pretty much a free period after that.  They chat some more.  Kaylee likes Lianne; she has a good heart.

That afternoon she tells her mom she'll be home late next day - "This school has an anime club that meets on Tuesdays, I'm gonna stay after and check it out."

Another day of classes goes by, and at the end of gym, the pair sets off for anime club.

"You'll have to show me where it is, I still don't totally know my way around yet," Kaylee says.

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"Sure thing! It's in the other building, with the physics classes." And she leads the way. "Luckily it's nice out, the walkway here gets horrible when it's windy." 

A couple of people have beaten them to the club and are helping the teacher clean up and put away supplies, while another person fiddles with the projector. (Everyone else trickles in over the next few minutes.) Kaylee will probably recognize some of them from lunch.

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She waves and smiles when she does.

"So, what exactly do you do in an anime club?  My old school didn't have one."

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They wave back, though no one comes over just yet.

"A lot of it's hanging out. We watch anime together, sometimes we do a little bookclub-type thing, the artists among us work on drawings together. Once we all collaborated on a short animation, did the voices and everything, which was a lot of fun. We've been talking about trying to get money together for a field trip, do a bake sale or something, but that always seems to fizzle out. There's a little satellite Japanese study group right after, too, when the weather's nice enough to sit outside and wait for the buses. I think we're planning on watching Sailor Moon today, we've been doing a string of anime classics lately - " She confirms with the person trying to get the projector to work that yep, they're watching the first episode of Sailor Moon.

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"You did an animation together?  That's so cool!  I'd love to see it if there's a copy around somewhere."

When Lianne mentions Sailor Moon, Kaylee bounces a little.  "I love Sailor Moon!  And pretty much any magical girl show, honestly.  I always wanted to be a magical girl when I was a little kid."

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"Yeah - probably not something we're going to do again, the person leading it graduated - but we definitely have a copy saved. I can borrow the computer once club's done to show it to you? And it's awesome you love Sailor Moon, too! I actually have a magical girl cosplay for cons and Halloween, though it's getting a bit small on me..."

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She doesn't squeal, what, that's ridiculous, she made no sort of delightedly undignified noise.  "That's so awesome!  I'd love to see it sometime!  Is it a particular character or one you made up yourself?  I could never do cosplay, I'm no good at sewing or like, costume design, or anything like that."

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"I used stuff scavenged from the thrift store as a base, so it's fairly generic. I'm not a pro at sewing or anything, I pretty much just added accents. Luckily I was able to make it a decent Sailor Uranus outfit, though I'm not super satisfied with the skirt..."

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"I bet it looks awesome."

The projector seems to be set up by now; Kaylee settles into a seat.

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And the episode plays! They have the time to chat about it afterwards (apparently several people hadn't ever seen it before), and most people who haven't met Kaylee yet come over to say hi. 

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She meets!  She greets!  She squees!  She chats!  She talks about the animation they all did with a few more people, mentions she's looking forward to seeing it.  She makes more friends - she never lives in one place for too long so she figures she's gotta do it quickly.  She has a pretty good time!

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There's a couple of ninth-graders and a few others who weren't here for that, so Lianne queues it up for the end of the hour. It's short, and clearly amateur-made, but it's a cute little animation about a magic fox with a paintbrush tail (the club's mascot, apparently). 

People are very willing to make fast friends! A small number of people give her usernames for various online sites (mostly microblogging and art) so they can stay in touch easier. People also recommend clubs - creative writing, Wednesdays, comes highly recommended, as does drama club (mostly making props for productions) - and recommend strategies for dealing with specific teachers. 

At the end of the hour most people go to be picked up by parents or walk or drive home, but some hang around to wait for the afterschool bus, including Lianne. A small group splits off to study on some of the outside benches.

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Kaylee thinks the magic fox is absolutely precious, and says so!

She collects usernames and gives out her own - she doesn't have an account on any art sites, she's no good at drawing, but she has been known to microblog.  On several people's recommendations she decides she's definitely going to check out the creative writing club tomorrow.

As folks disperse, Kaylee tags along behind Lianne.  "That was fun!  I'm glad I came."  Once they're outside: "So how long a wait do we have for the afterschool bus?"

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"I'm glad you had fun! Unfortunately it's a bit over an hour until the buses come - they're tied to the sports teams, which meet until four - but we can hang out on school grounds until then, or we can explore some of the area. Usually I find a bench and study or just read."

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"Hmm, let's explore," Kaylee says.  "Anything interesting to see around here?"

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"There's the old battlefields, one of the historic points is in walking distance - we went on a 'field trip' once in ninth grade history class - or if we walk fast enough there's a little shopping center."

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"Let's check out the battlefields," Kaylee says.  "How long's the walk?"

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