Postmortem

Participants:

Jonavan.jpg Evie.jpg

Date: May 25, 2011
Location: Jonavan's Room, Eastern Weyr
Synopsis: Evie talks to Jonavan about girls past and present. Predictably, he doesn't react well.
Rating: PG-13 for language
Logger: Jonavan

Warm citrine light illuminates this narrow room with several glows stationed at regular intervals along the length of one wall. A bed takes up the back, covered with red and navy blankets of varying weights. The chest at the foot of the bed is more a more delicately joined and planed piece of furniture than the rest of that in the room; bed, clothespress, table and chairs are all weyr-provided, sturdy and solid but nothing special. A drafting table takes a place of prominence in the middle, surface set at a slight angle. An armchair, comfortable but hastily upholstered, sits alongside a set of low bookshelves. The rest of the personal affects in the room suggest a man of solitary pursuits, beginning with a worn gitar leaned up in one corner. Along the right-hand wall above the glows, a pair of small botanical drawings have been mounted, details carefully represented in charcoal. The larger canvas stationed above the clothespress adjacent the door bears no such realism; therein, reds and blues find forceful expression.


“So, tell me. Make any friends? Any girlfriends?” Evie had appropriated Jonavan’s bed as her own and now lounged on her stomach with her shoes off, chin propped up by both hands. She watched her brother, who had been relegated to the armchair, with a mischievous grin.

Jonavan knew that look, knew she was driving at something, and tried to stare her down as he answered both questions. “Couple. No.”

“No? You know, you can actually be fun to be around when you’re not being a total misanthrope.”

“Is this how you talk to people who come to see you?” Jonavan asked. “Hey you – ‘Stop being such a misanthrope’?”

“You are not my patient,” Evie returned, grinning wider. “You’re my brother, and I’ll speak to you however I like.” When Jonavan failed to respond beyond rolling his eyes, Evie pressed on and made a guess. “What about Jaya?”

Jonavan looked surprised to hear the bartender’s name coming from his sister. “What about her?”

“Oh don’t play stupid – I know you remember?” Evie’s delight was growing; she clearly relished the opportunity to play the inquiring younger sister. “I met her today – I think she likes you, otherwise she wouldn’t be so bitter about whatever it is that you did. And you wouldn’t have done it unless you were feeling threatened, which means you like her too.” Evie paused to assess her brother’s expression, a mixture of discomfort and denial and, she thought, recognition. “Well, maybe you would’ve, since you’re practically incapable of normal human interaction. But I think I’m right, because otherwise you’d look bored right now instead of just trying to look bored. You’re so easy to read.”

Jonavan groaned. It was easy to forget in the interims between family visits just how perceptive his sister was. “This is because I told you your uterus was rotting, isn’t it. Faranth, do we really have to do another postmortem?”

Evie laughed and pulled herself back up to sitting, neatly crossing her legs beneath her. “This isn’t a postmortem; nothing’s dead. Postmortem was that last Crom girl – what’s her name?”

“Clarella?”

“Right, her. She was nice and all, but…” Evie shrugged. She had good things to say about most everyone, but just ‘nice’ was tellingly little.

“But a bit dull?” Jonavan supplied, brows lifting. He was curious to see where this was going.

“Well, yes,” his sister allowed. “That’s what I mean – you never really cared much about her and that was fine, suited you both, but you always looked a bit bored by her.” Evie paused to gather up her hair and pull it back with the tie that had been doubled around her wrist. “Would it kill you to care about someone other than yourself?”

Jonavan had gone silent, sitting slouched in his chair and meeting his sister’s gaze with a small frown. Evie decided he’d just about had enough, but her point was not yet made. She made her voice light to offset the content of what she had to say. “It doesn’t always have to be like Monika, you know. I’m not saying you were wrong – but you don’t have to make the same choices twice.”

Jonavan was starting to get annoyed, just as Evie had predicted. She was hardly surprised when he rounded on her rather than respond, accusation laced thick through his tone. “You should have told me she had gotten married.”

Evie tried to be patient as she replied. “I didn’t think it should come from me.”

“Why the hell not? It’s not like it’s private. Kind of one of those things that everyone knows – except me, apparently. Just how long have you been sitting on this fucking gem?” Jonavan rarely swore at his sister, and doing so now was meant to shove her out of her calm. It worked.

“Don’t you dare blame me,” Evie snapped as her patience disintegrated. “It is not my fault you don’t talk. I am not going to play messenger so you don’t have to do anything.”

Though Evie had known exactly what he was doing and why, it hadn’t stopped her from boiling over into a lecture that concluded, “Get your head out of your ass and stop being so fucking passive.”

She knew she couldn’t force her brother to change, no matter how much she encouraged or prompted or lectured, but it didn’t stop her from trying.



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