>>TOMBOI — PART TWO::
Disclaimer: Don't own, don't sue.
Fara sat on her bed and stared at her closets. She had two, and they were full of clothes, but she'd been staring at them long enough to realize something.
She had nothing to wear to dance clubs.
Nothing. Not one damn glittery shirt or skimpy dress. She somehow doubted a crop top and shorts would do. Nor did she have appropriate shoes. Hell, her shoes were compromised of combat boots, tennis shoes, and sandals. She owned no heels whatsoever.
Now, really, this wouldn't have been such a problem if she'd bother looking at the contents of her closets on Monday. Or any other day, really. But it was Friday, she was home from work, and she was supposed to go out in a few hours. And for perhaps the first time in her life, she uttered a phrase most females screamed every time they heard they were going out.
"Oh my god. I have nothing to wear."
She stood and paced, rubbing her eyes. Ok, think. You passed strategy classes with flying colors, you can get uptown and shop, then get back in time to get picked up, right? Right? Damn the road construction, the uptown shopping districts were likely to be mazes with no parking anywhere nearby.
She stopped and stared at the phone, then squared her shoulders. Ok, there was an obvious plan B. She'd even been bright enough to get Fay's new phone number. It still took her five minutes to get up the guts to make the call.
The phone rang seven times, then was picked up by Fay sounding as cheerful as daisies on prozac. Fara could hear a shower running in the background, and was brought back to reality by Fay's second "hello." "Uh, hi Fay, it's Fara."
"Hey girl! You pulled me out of the shower, lucky for you the phone was in the next room."
Fara banished thoughts of a wet Fay from her mind so she wouldn't start doubting her sexuality again, which was a weekly doubt as it was simply because of her inability to find men she liked. "I've got a slight problem."
"Oh, what's up? … hang on I have soap in my ear…" The phone was juggled. "Ok, now what's up?"
"This is going to sound terrible, but I just ransacked my bedroom, and I have absolutely nothing I can wear to a dance club."
"Oh really? Have your sizes changed since the Academy?"
"Uh, no actually, why?"
Fay replied by rattling off Fara's bust, waist, hips, and inseam, and ended with the size that generally fit her when she bought from stores.
"Huh? Wha? How did you…?"
"I pay attention, girl! Besides, I did desk jobs during the Academy and they included uniform handouts." Fay giggled. "Ok, I'm picking you up in less than an hour. Be ready." And she hung up.
Fara stared at the receiver and hung up, then sat back down on the bed and stared at the phone again. "What did I just do?"
Forty-five minutes later her doorbell rang, and she opened it to see Fay ready for a night on the town in a bewilderingly bright color clash of clothing. Fay squealed and gave her a hug, then put her to arm's length. "Yes, I definitely need to loan you something."
Fara was in jean shorts and a brandname T-shirt. "Fay?"
"Get your purse, come on! And what?"
Fara let herself get hauled to Fay's car, wallet chained to her jeans and keys on the chain. "The hell-ass are you wearing? It looks like a rainbow threw up on you."
Fay laughed and displayed herself before getting in the car. "It's called Fruits!"
"Um, ok…" Fara got in on the passenger side and had to hang on as Fay took off like a bat out of hell. "Is that what's … 'in' now?"
"It's Zonessian fashion. No designer labels needed, just dress bright enough to melt someone's eyes." Fay grinned, shifting the car as metallic chirps went off. Fara finally got her seatbelt on. "Skirt or pants?"
"Pants… preferably… Where would I put my wallet in a skirt?"
"Gotcha. I'll set you up."
Not long later, Fay led the way into her apartment building and drug Fara into her bedroom, depositing her on the bed and opening one of her closets. The clothing inside was arranged by color, both tops and bottoms.
"We're lucky in that we both have really neutral fur colors. Can you imagine having Fox's fur and trying to dress? He can't were red or purple and lookright. And if he wears the wrong shade of green he looks like a billboard for the holidays…"
Fara nodded vaguely, looking around Fay's bedrooms. It seemed Fay had never quit being a teenager, which is what Fara remembered from the Academy. Posters for movies and bands decorated the walls, and the wall color didn't agree: two walls were blue, one yellow, and one red. "You haven't changed at all, Fay."
"Sure I have! Here, put these on!"
Fara got a pair of pants to the face, and she giggled, standing and studying what she'd been pelted with. Red Capri pants? She shrugged and took off her boots, then skinned out of her shorts. "Ok, I give, how have you changed then?"
Fay paused, watching her in the mirror that made up the closet door. "Does your underwear have fish on them?"
Fara shrieked and wrapped her tail around herself. "FAY!"
Fay laughed and continued her rummaging through her closet. "Sorry, hun, I couldn't resist. Koi, looks like. Cute."
"FAY! … you looked that closely?" She added the second bit on in a mumble as she pulled on the Capri pants.
"You have a cute butt." Fay tossed a hand. "Which is how I changed, by the way. I mean I was kind of curious before, but now I know. I'm bi. No preference, just love people."
"And sometimes, you reeeaally love them." Fara said, then clapped a hand over her mouth.
Fay turned around, wielding a studded belt. "Hey! I'm not as bad as Bill was!"
"I'm sorry I didn't mean to say that, it slipped out."
"It's ok, hun. Since we're poking insults at each other, at least I know who I am." Fay tossed her an electric blue tank top.
"Hey." Fara pouted, changing tops, this time with her back turned.
"No offence, hun. But you do need to do some thinking."
"I know, I know." Fara sat down on the bed again, staring off. "Tonight isn't going to make it any better let me tell you."
"Because of Fox?"
"Yeah… I just…" Fara held her head in her hands.
Fay immediately went to her side and hugged her, sighing. "I'm sorry."
"It's not your fault Fay, it's mine. I mean, I… when I finally got up the guts to make a move on Fox, I thought I loved him. And then he basically tells me he's gay." Fara set her chin on Fay's shoulder, inhaling Fay's perfume. "And where do you buy that perfume?"
Fay smiled a bit. "It's a conditioner. And don't feel bad about Fox, he may not have shown it but he felt really bad about blowing you off."
"Fara, he and Falco were almost immediately in one of their off-again stages thereafter, for probably over a month." Fay gave her a squeeze. " Obviously they eventually made it up, but think about it. You are so important to him, you rocked his little world without even touching him."
Fara managed a smile. "I didn't know that happened. Thanks Fay."
"You can thank me by dumping the heartache you're still having over him. Now let's dress you like a rainbow on crack and go dancing."
Fara burst into laughter.
Falco stared across the street at the club, hands shoved in his pockets. Apparently the Metronome had taken over an old-style department store, completely redoing the three-story building. It seemed the first and second floor were open to the public, as there were people hanging out on balconies. For its namesake, an art-deco metal sculpture decorated the middle of the building, designed after the arm of a metronome.
"Damn, it's a good sized place." Fox said, standing next to him.
"Which brings up the question, how are we going to find Fay in this mess?"
Fox gave him a look and dug out a cell phone, flipping it open and hitting autodial. "She picked up Fara and I have Fara's cell phone number."
Fara was just getting out of Fay's car when her phone started ringing.
"Sorry I couldn't find a closer parking spot. Who's calling you?"
"It's alright, we're only like half a block away. And it's Fox." Fara answered, smiling. "Hey, you."
"… out there in the cold, getting lonely getting old, can you feel me?" Fox sang. In the background Fara could hear Falco accusing Fox of being a freak of nature. "Hi Fara. Where are you and Fay exactly?"
"We couldn't find parking close so we're walking to the club from one of the parking complexes. Be there in a few minutes."
"Alright then. We're standing across the street from the place, meet us here?"
"Can do babe… Hey, Fox?"
Fara gnawed her lower lip for a moment. "Listen, I'm sorry I've been acting so strange around you. I can be a little bitchy when wound and you don't deserve it at all."
"Aw, Fara. It's ok." Fox sounded surprised. Falco was heard in the background wanting to know what the hell was going on.
"Until you kidnap me and use me as a voodoo doll, yes."
Fara smiled. "See you shortly." Then she hung up, pocketing the cell phone again.
"Feel better?" Fay asked, looking at her as they walked down the street. Cars cruising by were slowing to give catcalls, apparently two girls dressed like neon trainwrecks were not often seen in this area.
"Yeah." Fara looped an arm around Fay's waist and gave her a half-hug. "Thank you."
"You're welcome." Fay returned the hold, then grabbed Fara's hand and held it, smiling when Fara sputtered. "Lighten up, girl. If I'm 'with' you then I won't get hit on near as bad."
"Um, ok." Fara finally said, flustered.
A few minutes later they joined Falco and Fox, who greeted them with handslaps and hugs. "Thanks for telling us about this place, it looks great." Fox said, looking at the club. "I do have to ask though, is it eighteen and up? I've seen a lot of teenagers in the area."
"Yes, it is. ID check at the door, then they put a bracelet on you if you're a minor." Fay said, brushing a few stray curls out of her eyes. " Shall we?"
A few hours later Fara was standing on one of the balconies, looking down at the street, which was still busy in spite of the late hour. She would have been tired, but the two high-caliber caffeinated drinks she'd grabbed from the bar were doing their job pretty well.
This was a pretty cool club. Yes, a gay club, but still awesome by most standards. And it had been pretty entertaining to watch Falco and Fox cut loose on the dance floor. She felt bad for them in a way, they were usually pretty reserved in public about their relationship, but here they felt safe. Even if they were recognized, who here would rat them out?
Fara smiled at Fay over her shoulder. "Yeah, I just needed some air."
"Ah." Fay joined her at the railing. "You like this place?"
"Actually yeah, I do. And heck, I feel modestly dressed."
"Those light-up shirts are something aren't they?" Fay giggled. "I'm glad you like it, I was worried you'd be uncomfortable."
"I am, sort of." Fara turned to lean back against the railing, looking at Fay. "I mean, there are so many beautiful people here. That girl DJ is just gorgeous."
"Miyu. And yeah, she is. She's one hell of a kisser too."
Fara blinked. "…um…"
Fay giggled. "Didn't do anything but give her a kiss, hun. She played one of my favorite dance songs, so what can I say?" She looked down at the street, smiling still. "Does it bother you that I'm so flamboyant?"
"No… I…" Fara combed her fingers through her hair. "Argh, maybe you're right and I don't really know myself."
"Are you telling me you never experimented as a teen?"
"Oh come on, Fay, you know me. I barely dated during the Academy and I was the same during high school. Of course everyone in my high school figured I was a lesbian anyway just because I played football with the boys."
"Not that there's anything wrong with being a lesbian."
Fay shifted so she was also leaning back against the railing, one leg bent so her foot rested back against the rails. She was in a kneehigh skirt, and the pose just accented her legs. "Well, the way I see it there's two things you can do."
"One, ignore all of this and these issues, and continue trying to find a guy you like who will like you back. Two, do some cautious experimenting."
Fara blushed and glanced away. "I don't know, Fay…"
"It's not like you're shy. Or maybe it's that you are, but only if you're uncertain?" She shifted so she stood in front of Fara, leaning on the railing with one arm on either side of Fara. Fara squeaked, staring at her, which wasn't hard as they were basically nose to nose. "Case in point?"
There was a long awkward silence, during which Fara's furiously racing brain made no decisions, so she stood frozen. Fay made no other moves, just looked back with playful eyes.
After a few minutes, giggling and a muffled cheer were heard to one side, and the pair turned their heads at the same time, glaring at several teenage boys on the balcony next to them, who were hanging on the rails and staring at them with happy grins. "Oh, I'm sure it'd make your day if we kissed wouldn't it?" Fay said snippily, and wasn't surprised when they cheered again. "Come on, Fara, let's leave them to their fantasizing." And with that, Fay took her hands and drug her back downstairs, then onto the dance floor.
"I don't dance…!" Fara protested, then squeaked again when Fay held her from behind and began to sway, getting Fara to hear the beat. She gave up and swayed with Fay, not surprised when the music changed shortly. Her mind was still a jumble, but eventually she gave up on thinking about it and just let herself have fun, getting used to Fay having a hand on her waist.
"Not so bad, is it?" Fay asked, giving her a light hug as they danced. She'd moved to be in front of Fara, enjoying watching the fennec slowly relax.
Fara mustered a smile. "No. Not at all."