Arriving in her room, Emmy quickly stripped out of her sweaty clothes and turned the shower water on in the adjoining bathroom. If there was anything she hated more than burying dead animals, it was sweating. Climbing in the shower, Emmy already had her hand on the shampoo bottle when she heard her computer ding with an alert. Someone had commented on one of her posts. Debating getting out of the shower, Emmy decided to quickly shampoo, soap up and rinse off. She had been away from her computer for an hour, but she was sweaty and she knew she would be uncomfortable for the rest of the evening if she didn’t shower now.
Once she was semi dry, she ran, well walked with a purpose, to her computer. She did have an alert. From Skully90. “Great. Probably not agreeing with me, again.” She read Skully90’s response to Emmy’s theory about what was going to happen to Phineas Quirk. “Unfounded, lacking facts, blah, blah, blah.” Grabbing her mouse, Emmy clicked on the thumbs down icon near Skully’s comment. “Whatever.”
Emmy had been into the life of Phineas Quirk and his adventures since she was 8 years old, when her parents purchased her sister Rebecca, the first book in the “Quirk’s World” series. Rebecca, as usual, had no time for something that didn’t involve her being the center of attention, so she gave the books to Emmy to read when she was older. Well Emmy, being the little mini genius that she was (in her own humble opinion), stayed up that very night until she had finished the first book. The next day she begged her mother to go buy the next two in the series. Reluctantly, but because she is an English teacher and can’t resist any child who wants to read an actual book, her mother bought the rest of the books available (at the time there were four). Emmy was hooked and her lifelong love affair with Phineas Quirk was born. Well so far lifelong. Emmy was 18 and the 10th and last book in the series was due to be released at Christmas. Sally didn’t want to think about that. While she was excited to see what Rommey Harrington had done with her characters, how she had decided to finish her series, Emmy knew that the end of the series, in a way, was the end of Emmy’s childhood. She would be turning 18 in December and along with her birthday, and the end of the “Quirky Kingdom” series would come other grown up things like choosing a college, getting a job, and leaving behind Phineas. It was a deal she had made with herself, the end of the series meant the end of the obsession and the beginning of her new life as a normal, well-adjusted adult
Phineas and his world made up so much of Emmy’s childhood memories. Her first experience with death of a loved one (Phineas’ grandfather Teddy in Book 3), heartbreak (When Hazel dumps Phineas in book 6 for a boy “from her time”), rejection (basically how her peers treated her when they found out how much she loved the series), triumph, love, friendship. Maybe not real in the flesh friendship, but she was friends with a ton of other Phineas “phans”and had even met a few at last year’s Comicon. Though so many important events in her life had been punctuated by one of these books, lately Emmy had the overwhelming urge to let it all go. She was almost 18 and had never had a boyfriend, never been kissed, never been to a party. Not that she wanted to do any of those things right now. The idea of kissing a boy, as appealing as it sounds, scared the hell out of her.
The topic of her and boys was a very popular one with her sister Rebecca, who had graduated two years previously from East Watkins High, leaving behind a string of broken hearts and a few rumors. “There isn’t even some other geek you want to bump uglies with, some guy with questionable fashion sense? We could work on the fashion thing.” That was her sister. Always trying to improve people, Emmy especially. Her mission since she had been home for break over the summer has been to set her up with someone, anyone. Everywhere she went, Rebecca pointed out a guy that was a “potential” for Emmy. After trying to shove her into a weird guy in Darth Vader shirt (and consequentially causing her to knock over a small display of tampons), Emmy vowed to never go out in public again with Rebecca, a vow she made very loudly and very publically once they returned home. This delighted Greg, who proceeded to walk around saying “Emmy, I am your boyfriend” over and over again in his best Darth Vader voice.
Boyfriends and kissing could happen in college. When she was away from her family, away from the kids who made fun of her at school, away from her former, nerdy self. She planned on going far away for college and reinventing herself. Well she didn’t plan on it, planning on something implies that it could change. She was going to make it happen, no matter what.
Just as Emmy was about to sink into her head and plan her “new self” her computer dinged again. “It better not be Skully again.” It would be like Skully, to leave multiple comments in response to something Emmy had said in order to bait Emmy into an argument. Wincing, Emmy looked at the screen, preparing for a fight. And let out a breath. “I totally agree Emmy, Phineas has to either die or throw away the time key, it’s the only way to provide closure. I like how you think ;)” Emmy smiled. Jude. One of few “phans” that Emmy didn’t mind calling by his real name. Jude had been one of the first people to reach out to her in Phineas Quirk fandom. Her oldest and best friend, virtual and otherwise. While they had never met in person, they had spent many late nights up, chatting about the fandom and life in general. Although they had many things in common, their mutual dislike for Skully90, aka Leslie, aka bane of Emmy’s existence, aka other words that Emmy refuses to use when referring to another woman. That dislike is actually what brought Jude and Emmy together. It was late one night in a Quirky Kingdom (The most popular Phineas Quirk fansite) chat room and Skully90 was asserting herself as queen. Emmy makes one comment to disagree with her (there is no way Phineas and Agatha would ever get together), and Skully unleashes everything she had pent up on Emmy. Jude came to her rescue, defending Emmy and privately messaged her to tell her what a jerk Skully was. That night, five years ago, a friendship was born. It also helped that Jude was just as geeky as Emmy and loved all the same fandoms (Harry Potter, Dr. Who, Marvel Comics). This provided plenty of late night conversation material. It was a beautiful friendship.
Emmy sat down at her computer just as her computer dinged with a message from Simon.
EmmyluvsPhineas: Hey, what’s up?
QuirkyMarauder: Not much. Skully’s annoying me, asking me to meet up tonight.
EmmyuvsPhineas: Are you?
Emmy cringed. Jude and Skully lived in the same small town in Rhode Island, two thousand miles away from Emmy. They didn’t go to the same school (Jude went to private school), but they had spent some time together and had even dated during a time when Simon said he was young, impressionable, and stupid. Also known as 14 years old. Even though he said he disliked her to the point of avoiding her, apparently in this small town, most everyone of their age hung out together. Emmy wasn’t jealous, she just disliked Skully so much that she didn’t want Emmy poisoned by her. Not jealous though. Not at all. Jealous wasn’t something Emmy would ever be.
QuirkyMarauder: Well maybe. Keith is going to be there and I’ve not seen him since he got back from break. That OK?
EmmyluvsPhineas: Why wouldn’t it be? I’m not your keeper J
QuirkyMarauder: You can be my keeper if you want, ;) lol
Emmy smiled, pausing to think about what to say next. Jude was doing this a lot lately, flirting, or something like flirting. He had no reason to, it’s not like they even had met each other. She had seen a half picture of Jude. His profile picture alternated between random fandom pics and a picture of half of a smirk-like smile, one large expressive green eye, and the other obscured by a floppy mop of blonde hair. Emmy had never posted a picture of herself. Sometimes of her hands holding some Phineas merch, but never herself. Once Jude had asked for a picture and she said she would rather not. They would probably never meet in person, so what did it matter. Besides she wasn’t anything special to look at, at least according to herself. Her mom and Rebecca were constantly calling her a “natural beauty,” but all Emmy saw was overly large hazel eyes, small boyish hips and barely a handful of boobs. Oh and curly hair that frizzed when it was humid or rainy. Nothing special.
Skully on the other hand was hot. Seriously. She had a doll like face with a wide smile. She had an edgy black bob that she was constantly highlighting with crazy colors and was constantly posting pictures of her all done up with crazy makeup, although her “just woke up” face made Emmy jealous. No not jealous, Emmy didn’t get jealous. Irritated. She had once asked Jude if the pictures that Skully posted were really her. He said they were. Emmy still couldn’t figure out why that bothered her.
EmmyluvsPhineas: Haha, I’ll pass on the whole keeper thing. Sounds like a full time job
QuirkyMarauder: I will probably stop by for a while. Will you be on later?
EmmyluvsPhineas: Maybe. Why?
QuirkyMarauder: Well I want to say goodnight of course J
EmmyluvsPhineas: ::Rolls eyes:: Whatever, weirdo.
QuirkyMarauder: What, you don’t want me to say goodnight to you? Fine, now I’m going to pout! ::doing best fake pout impression, wish you could see::
Emmy smiled, Simon was weird, but always made her laugh. Say goodnight? Well, he was convincing, whatever it was.
EmmyluvsPhineas: Fine. Fine. I’ll be up, I wouldn’t want to deprive you and cause anymore terrible fake pouting.
QuirkyMarauder::: fist pump:: OK. Cool. See you then ;)
Emmy turned around from her computer and rested her elbows on her knees. What was going on with her?