A Friend In Need Gets Help Indeed

Brief Title:

Firestar, Showstopper

Scene Runner/Watcher:

IC Date:
02/27/13 1:02

New York Bookstore

Richenda asks Angelica for some help, and being the good friend she is, Angelica offers said help

Social or Plot:


Tuesday afternoon in Queens, after school. Chenda does love this neighborhood, but the crime rate doesn't bring her this way often anymore. If it weren't for a very special favor, she wouldn't be here now.

But she does badly need the help, and only one person she knows can provide it. Hence, her text message to a certain redhead of the right age: <Please help! Need to find easy-to-read books. Meet me after school, Mike's Books in Queens? Will show you how to get there if you need it? Please? There will be ice cream later?>

The texted reply was fairly predictable to any who met Angelica: <don't worry, will meet you there>.

And sure enough, Angelica Jones is waiting outside Mike's Book exactly on the dot, waiting to meet Richenda, and as soon as she can spot the other girl she immediately points out, "no need for ice cream later, now what's really the problem?"

Chenda smiles in relief at the sight of Angelica, hurrying across the street to join her, accompanied by much honking of irate horns. "Thanks, Angelica. You're totally a lifesaver!" And of course, she gives her a hug. Any who met Richenda would know to expect one!

Oh, dear... questions. Chenda blinks. "Wha..? I just need help finding books, Angelica. F-for a friend."

Angelica returns the hug, though she does have that ingrained flinching reaction from when she was really doubting her ability to prevent harm to other people near her. "That's the big emergency?" Angelica sounds confused, but goes with it nevertheless, "okay, what kind of books does your friend likes?"

Chenda is used to the reaction by now, just hugging Angelica tighter. "Just about any kind, really. She just has trouble reading much. I don't think she was ever properly taught how," she explains. "She's reading at about your level, or maybe a little below, I think. I can't help her, 'cuz I'm terrible at finding books." She turns and opens the door for Mike's Books, holding it for her friend. "After you?"

"Thank you," Angel says as she walks past the door and nods to 'Chenda's explanation, before eventually clapping her hands, "that's the easiest there is, Harry Potter! The first book is very simple reading, and it's so good! I really could relate."

"I remember that book... I had to buy a dictionary to get through it, but it was really good," Chenda recalls, no mean feat with her memory, following Angelica inside. She carefully shuts the door behind them, recalling that Mike can be a little touchy about his door. "I know there were more, but they were always sold out when I tried to find them. Maybe there are some used ones here. Do you know of any more?"

"I can do you one better, Chenda, you can borrow my books, unless of course they are for some other 'friend'." Angel chuckles, assuming Chenda was talking about herself. "So, your friend needs easier reading than Harry Potter?"

Chenda, hearing that, blushes. "I should know better than to try and fool you, Angelica," she murmurs, covering her face with her hands and turning away.

Angelica giggles and reaches more willingly to take Chenda in an embrace this time, "don't be silly, I know how embarrassing it could be...but it's really all a matter of practice. So did you find Harry Potter much too hard to read? I can give you some Goosebumps books to read," Angelica offers, "and if that's too hard, maybe a Sesame Street book or two, so long as you can handle it wihout getting too embarrassed."

Chenda stiffens, then turns and returns Angelica's hug. "Aw, you... I lie to you, and you're kind anyway. Have I ever told you what a totally awesome friend you are?" she asks. "Maybe the Goosebumps couldn't hurt..."

But then comes that observation, and she shudders. "I don't know if you do, Angie. I'm failing some of my classes because I can't read. And some of the teachers still just tell me to work harder and call on me anyway." She takes a step back. "Imagine being in a classroom and hearing your name, and you have to stand up... and then comes the question. And you just draw a complete blank, and it's all over your face. And suddenly all your clothes just tear away, and you're standing there in your underwear in front of everybody... okay, that doesn't really happen, but that's how it feels, standing there in front of everybody, just blushing like crazy. And all you can do is stand there, because they have to tell you to sit down." She shivers and looks into her friend's face. "That's me, every day, 'cuz I can't read. Even the dictionary doesn't help much."

Angelica listens and hugs her friend some more, "that sounds like the teachers are being unnecessarily cruel to you...do you want me to talk to Ms. Grey about it?" Angelica offers, before pulling away from the embrace and holding Chenda's shoulders, "anyways, what I can really do for you is try to help you and get better, if you like. Kinda like tutoring?"

"They do it to everybody. I'm just the only one who can never answer a question," Chenda mutters in reply. "Except in one or two classes, and they're more about doing stuff than reading." She blinks, looking at Angelica again, clasping her shoulders. "You could do that? Angie, I wouldn't want to take up your time like that, not if you've got other stuff to do." And she really does sound sincere about it, too!

"I'll help you 'Chenda, I may not be as readily available as a real tutor, but I'll do what I can...settled then?" Angelica asks, smiling warmly at Richenda, turns out Mike might not get an extra sale today after all.

"Well, if you're sure... maybe we'd better find a few books, though. I hate to come in here without buying anything. Mike needs the business," Chenda admits, smiling wryly back and giving Angel another quick hug. "You're a lifesaver, Angel. I'll try not to need /too/ much help."

"Fair enough," Angelica says, her eyes immediately shifts to the teen romance section, one of her bad habits as she starts to look at some of the books on the shelves.

Chenda, seeing how quickly Angel looks at that section, immediately stifles giggles. "In a few years, the bodice-ripper section is /really/ gonna be in trouble," she teases, joining the redhead there.

"Aww come on, these are nothing like bodice-rippers," Angel remarks in dejection, "they are very romantic, and I wish I had a boyfriend like some of the girls in these stories have..." she shifts in discomfort and reaches to pick a book, immediately heading towards the counter, "I'm sorry, Richenda, but I need to head back to abroad, there's some...business going on."

"Give it a few years," Chenda ripostes with absent-minded playfulness... and then, seing Angelica moving away, quickly reaches out and hooks the back of her jeans to hold her back. "Wait... you know I'm just teasing, right?" She quickly grabs a book from the same section, just at random. She might never read it, but at least she can give a show of solidarity. "I've been known to read one once in a while."

Slowed down by a sudden pull on the back of her jeans, Angel turns to look at Chenda with a slight flush on her cheeks, "I guess you only wanted to tease...but it's hard, I mean, I'm not used to teasing being good natured." Placing the book on the counter for Mike to ring it up, Angelica reaches for her wallet while murmuring apologetically, "they really are good books, I love how they show love as such a wonderful thing that feeds you, you know, like the flower and the sun..."

"Sorry. It's kind of second nature to me," Chenda replies, doing some blushing herself. "I have to keep a tight leash on that, and sometimes I forget."

As they reach the counter, the gypsy girl tries to reach over and stop Angelica's hand from finding her wallet. She can't quite reach, and instead tugs on her other pocket, just to get her attention. "Wait... I've got this. /I/ invited /you/, remember? And I still owe you ice cream!"

With her wallet in hand, Angelica looks at Chenda with confusion, "no...I can't have you paying for me, you're not making any money, are you? I appreciate the thought, but I can't let you do that, Chenda," Angelica says with a concerned look on her face.

"Used books, Angel. I can afford that much," Chenda replies reassuringly, leaning over to give the (not much) smaller girl a one-armed hug. "And the help you're sure to give me is worth a lot more than one book and a shared banana split later."

"Fine, fine, fine, you can pay for my book," Angelica gives in though she doesn't look comfortable to do so, putting her wallet away and allowing Richenda to pay on her behalf.

"Angel in nickname, angel in fact," Chenda murmurs fondly, turning over the cash and handing Angelica her bag, slipping her own book into a pocket. "I won't keep you any longer... but let me know if I can help with... abroad?"

"Awww, now you're being too kind 'Chenda," Angel says with a slight blush, a warm smile taking over her visage. Taking the bag from Chenda, Angel offers her a tight embrace, "thank you for the gift, I will enjoy it." Angelica nods at the mention of abroad, but decides it's best if Richenda doesn't get involved with New Warrior business, she's not a full fledged X-Men after all. "I have to rush now, see you 'Chenda!" True to her words, Angelica does hurry out of the store next.

"Matching kindness with kindness," Chenda replies, hugging back. "It's nothing. Be careful out there, Red." She lets go, and doesn't try to follow Angelica. She'll just try to be one of the first to welcome her back, when she can.

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