Re Verse All; Chapter 97, Takano 43

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Stories from the Verse
Re Verse All
Chapter 97:  Takano 43
Table of Contents
Previous chapter:  Beam 90

When Tommy awoke the next morning, Lauren was already seated in a nearby chair, one foot pulled up beneath her, reading a book.  Tommy tried to be quiet, but Lauren apparently was aware of her.

“Good morning,” she said.  “I don’t suppose the computer has told you where we might find a bathroom.”

Tommy grimaced, realizing that this was definitely a shared need.

“Shame on me that I haven’t asked.  Of course, I don’t think I’ve ever tried to Google ‘where is the bathroom’.”

Lauren laughed.  “Well, first time for everything.  Give it a shot?”

Tommy picked up her pad and quickly entered her search.  It returned what appeared to be a floor plan.

“It seems,” she said, “that we are in something like the courtyard of an apartment complex, or something like it.  Anyway, every one of those doors up those ramps opens into a set of rooms that includes at least one bathroom.”

“And how do we get in?”

“Assuming they’re all unoccupied, they should all be unlocked.  We just touch the screen by the door.”

“All right.  It sounds like there’s no reason to fight over the bathroom.  I’ll take this side.”  Lauren walked over to the nearer ramp and started up; Tommy took that as her cue, and trotted to the other one.

The door opened to a rather large apartment, a living room just inside, an eat-in kitchen adjacent, and a hallway that brought her quickly to the desired bathroom.  Once she had utilized it, she browsed the remaining rooms before returning to meet Lauren in the courtyard.

“Do you feel as foolish as I do?” Tommy asked.

“Foolish?  How so?”

“We spent the night camped out here on these benches, and up there there are beds with mattresses, running water, effectively a free hotel room.”

“Put it that way and yes, I guess we were a bit silly.  Of course, we didn’t know.”

“I don’t know how much of a hurry we’re in.”

“How do you feel after your workout yesterday?”

Tommy had forgotten.  She paused and rolled her shoulders, flexed her arms--everything was fine.

“Well, I don’t know what that medical robot did, but no problems here.  But the night before last I spent crawling through a snowy forest trying to find my stuff, and I’m thinking that I would really like to get a shower, or maybe a bath, and throw a few things in the laundry up there.”

“Absolutely.  I spent quite a while spelunking with a party of warriors, and could certainly use a bit of cleaning up myself.  Why don’t we stay the day here and continue our quest tomorrow?”

“Sounds good to me,” Tommy said.

“So, what about breakfast?”

Tommy scrunched her nose as she thought.  “Well,” she said, “so far it looks like, with a bit of effort, we can order anything we want and have it brought here ready to eat.  What do you want for breakfast?”

“Well,” Lauren said, “I don’t often land in the lap of luxury, and while this isn’t quite that, it’s pretty comfortable.  I’ll take steak and eggs, the steak medium rare and the eggs sunny-side up, hash browns, bacon, orange juice, and coffee, light and sweet.  I could probably think of six other things I’d love to have, like grits, fresh fruit, milk--but if I can eat all of this I can figure out what I want for lunch later.”

Tommy had to admit that that breakfast sounded good, and she ordered almost the same thing for herself, but that she had her eggs scrambled and replaced the coffee with milk.  It arrived twenty minutes later, and they agreed to carry it up to the kitchen table in one of the apartments.  It took two trips to get it all, but the table and chairs made it easier to manage.  Tableware had come with it, and they were soon fed.

Tommy gathered her things and took them to the apartment she had already explored.  Throwing her soiled clothes in the washer, she let it run while she took a shower.  She pulled clean things from her pack and wore them while her others dried.  Then she returned to the courtyard where again Lauren was already waiting.

“Do we have another workout today?” Tommy asked.

“My sensei said that I should have my lessons every two to three days.  I do it more often sometimes, and I’ve missed some, but every other day seems to work well.  It gives you time to recover, among other things.”

Tommy nodded.  There was sense to that.  “So then, what?”

“Lunch?” Lauren suggested.  “I’d cook, but as long as we can get free food I think perhaps I should save my rations.”

Tommy again nodded.  “So, what would you like?”

“This is not so easy as it sounds.  If I were in a diner, I would ask what kind of soup they have.  Apparently here they have everything.  I think, though, a club sandwich, but I’m not sure whether I want roast beef or tuna salad.  Let’s do a tuna salad club with vegetarian vegetable soup, and I’ll drink root beer and have a slice of strawberry shortcake for dessert.  Think that can be done?”

“Thus far just about anything can be done,” Tommy answered, and she turned her attention to her computer.  Finishing Lauren’s order, she decided for herself to have an Italian hoagie, broccoli cheese soup, and citrus soda, and dared to order ice cream with it.  The variety of available flavors of this last was overwhelming, but she found something that sounded good and went with that.

Lunch was delivered more quickly than breakfast, probably, Tommy thought, because there wasn’t much to cook.  The ice cream came in a cold container, and again they ate at Lauren’s kitchen table.

After lunch Tommy considered whether to pull out her English lit book, but decided instead to prompt Lauren for more stories of her adventures.  There were plenty of these, and they spent the afternoon on them, although Lauren managed to wheedle more stories from her as well.  They kept this up until they agreed on ordering dinner, for which they again pursued diner dinners, meat and vegetables and dessert.  Deciding it was safer to stay closer together, they brought Tommy’s gear over to Lauren’s apartment and each chose a bedroom.  Lauren took the one with the large bed and the small bathroom, and Tommy took the other end of the hall by the main bathroom, and they slept more comfortably on the mattresses than they had on the benches.

Next chapter:  Chapter 98:  Beam 91
Table of Contents

There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with five other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #390:  World Facilities.  Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter.  It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.

As to the old stories that have long been here:

Verse Three, Chapter One:  The First Multiverser Novel

Old Verses New

For Better or Verse

Spy Verses

Garden of Versers

Versers Versus Versers

Stories from the Verse Main Page

The Original Introduction to Stories from the Verse

Read the Stories

The Online Games

Books by the Author

Go to Other Links

M. J. Young Net

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