Antares Yed gets a call from Antares just after midnight.
Yed Yed's muffled voice is audible through the phone: "Yes dad, it won't happen again. No. I'll tell my friend not to call so late."
Yed "Yes, dad. No, it's not my girlfriend. Ex-girlfriend."
Yed Yed's voice is more clear now: "Hello?"
Antares "Get yer strings and come over to Maia's place," she says without preamble.
Yed "Are you crazy? At this time of night? I can't even take calls right now, much less go out."
Yed "Anyways, my car is trashed."
Maia muffled, in the background: "Tell him to hurry up. We don't have all night. I mean, we do, but still."
Yed "Long story."
Antares "Yeah, I heard. I guess we could come over there instead." She sounds pleased at discovering the idea.
Antares "Long story? Far-spread story, buddy. Poor Asty."
Yed "Oh God, it's already on the network?"
Yed "We were, um, not actually together, you know."
Antares "Yeah, whatever. Come ON, Yed. If we have to hike all the way over there, I'll already be drunk by the time we arrive."
Yed "There's alcohol?!" Yed is whispering now.
Yed "Look, you're asking me to sneak out. Late at night. On a school night. Drive a car with no headlight. To a place with alcohol. And you know what?"
Yed "I don't even have a bass guitar."
Antares Yed can almost hear Antares rolling her eyes elaborately at someone on her end. "Yeah guys, he's coming."
Maia "Tell him we've got alcohol!"
Antares "You've got something, right? 'Cause I totally remember us talking music. C'mon, nothing better than music after a breakup."
Antares "Besides, if Maia doesn't split this beer with someone, she's gonna get all shitty, and then I'll be mad at you tomorrow."
Maia "I am not! Tell him you're full of crap!"
Yed "Is there any way I can get a ride?"
Antares "Maia says she's full of crap, or something, I'm not really paying attention to her."
Antares "Sure, we'll work something out. Give us ten minutes."
Yed "Do you know where I live?"
Maia ::muffled punching sound::
Antares "Ow, you bitch! Yeah, sure, Yed, we'll drive around looking for the crazy girlfriend tracks. Seeya!"
Antares hangs up.
Yed "The car's trashed, it should be easy to find."
Yed "I'll see if I can turn the porch light on."
Antares Eight and a half minutes later, Antares screeches to a halt at the curb outside. "Man, good thing Furud lives so close to you," she says to Maia. "Does he know yet that he gave you a key?"
Maia "I don't think he remembers anything about that night."
Maia "Which is probably for the best."
Maia "Man, that's a nice house!"
Antares "Well, he's got a generous heart and all, I'm sure he'd be happy if he knew." Antares peers out the window. "Shit, yeah. They can afford a few headlights."
Yed flickers his front porch light five times.
Antares "Is that, like, a secret signal or something?" Antares slides out of the car and heads for the porch.
Yed The porch lights flicker again, faster.
Maia "You were the one talking to him. Why are you asking me? Ugh!" Maia pulls her amp out of the car and slings her guitar over her shoulder.
Antares "Because you're the know-it-all," Antares says over her shoulder. She peers in the front door window, lifting a fist to bang on it if Yed's not there.
Yed opens the door a crack. "Hey. What's with all the stuff?" he asks, peeking through the crack.
Maia "What, you mean, my guitar? That I use to play music? Which is what we are going to do tonight?"
Antares jerks a thumb back at Maia in a 'what she said' gesture, pushing a beer can into Yed's hands.
Yed "But... not here!" Yed opens the door, taking the beer, and squeezes through the door frame tightly before shutting it behind himself.
Yed "We can't do this here."
Yed "I can sneak out, sure, but this will just get you thrown out and me in even more trouble."
Maia "Oh, right, we were going to pick you UP." Maia giggles. "I totally forgot."
Yed smells the can. Egh.
Antares "That's because you were too busy ABUSING ME to listen. C'mon, Yed, ready to go?"
Maia "No wonder you didn't get your shit out of the car."
Maia "Yeah, grab your instrument, man."
Antares "You don't smell it, you drink it. Usually in big gulps, so's you don't have to taste it much," Antares offers to Yed.
Yed "One sec." Yed reaches behind the door, grabs a black hoodie, and pulls it on. He's wearing all black.
Yed "I thought I told you I don't have a bass guitar."
Yed "Agh, I'm being so difficult. This is uncool."
Maia "Well, I wasn't really going to say anything, but yeah."
Yed "Fuck it. I'm bringing my bass. We're jazz fusion tonight. Be right back."
Antares grins and slaps Yed on the back. "We'll be in the car."
Maia "Jazz fusion?" Maia asks as Yed heads back indoors.
Antares shrugs. "I'll play anything once."
Yed A minute later, Yed hauls out a large black case, wheeling it down the driveway.
Antares eyes the case critically. "Has that thing had its shots? I don't want to think about where Furry's back seat has been."
Yed raises an eyebrow. "Um, pop the trunk please."
Antares obliges with an elaborate, sliiiightly unsteady bow.
Yed throws it in the trunk, climbs into the backseat, audibly sniffs the air, and buckles up.
Antares "So you and Asty, huh?" Antares says as she takes off back for Maia's place.
Yed "No, no," Yed says enthusiastically.
Yed "That was a, um, thing. For my hair."
Yed "... Long story."
Maia glances at Yed's head speculatively. "It doesn't really look any different."
Antares eyes Yed in the rearview mirror. "She's right. Also, take a drink."
Yed "That comes later. Foil or something. Onward!"
Maia "What happened to your beer?"
Yed "Shit! Still in the house!"
Yed runs for his life.
Yed comes back with it. "Onward!"
Maia frowns. "That was weird."
Maia "Didn't you...have your seat belt buckled?"
Maia squints at Yed.
Antares "Kid's fast when he moves." Antares isn't a great driver, but she manages not to crash Furud's car on the way back to Maia's place.
Yed buckles up again.
Yed "Um, lead the way. I have literally never done this before."
Antares A few minutes later, they pull up outside Maia's house. "Come on, in the garage. Need help with that crate?" Antares asks Yed.
Yed "No," Yed says with a dopey smile. "Thanks."
Maia drags her stuff inside and starts plugging things into other things.
Antares "Cool." She takes a drink instead as she heads in, since they're about to get down to serious business.
Yed takes a cue and takes a sip, grimacing noticeably.
Yed "Okay, yeah. I'll take bigger drinks. Egh."
Antares "Toldya. The Beast is not a sipping beer." Antares plugs in her own set of things, then watches curiously to see what Yed unpacks.
Maia Casey is present and watches curiously as Yed walks in.
Yed nods a greeting.
Yed Walking to the far left corner, Yed stands the case up, opens it, and pulls out one big-ass piece of wood. "I don't think I need an amp."
Antares A slow, approving grin spreads across Antares' face. "This is gonna be cool."
Yed "I, um, okay. Bear with me. I only know a few Blondie songs."
Maia Casey makes a disbelieving face.
Antares "We'll figure something out. The important thing is to get you beered up and playing, and then more beer so you'll give us the gossip on this shit with you and Asterope."
Yed takes a big gulp.
Yed "Agh!" Yed wipes his mouth. "That was not actually easier in proportion to the volume."
Yed "... Let's just play." Yed takes another gulp.
Antares grins and slings on her guitar. "Good man."
Yed "What key are we in?"
Maia "F sharp?"
Maia "I think this is F sharp."
Maia plays the chords of the song rapidly through.
Yed "Can do. I'll, um, try and keep up."
Maia "Just try to follow me."
Maia "How loud is that thing?"
Yed "It can get up there if I really pluck hard."
Maia raises an eyebrow.
Yed "What? Seriously."
Maia "Well, okay. Let's hit it, then. Ready, guys? ONE! TWO! ONE TWO THREE FOUR!"
Maia leans back, mopping off sweat, and looks at Yed with a new respect. "Hey, you can really work that thing."
Maia "I wonder if we can mike it and run it through an preamp box into the PA."
Yed adjusts one of the strings.
Maia goes off and starts poking around in her wires and stuff.
Yed "Um, that depends. I'm basically doing the instrumental version of watermelon-canteloupe for now."
Antares sets her guitar down carefully and then drops down carelessly right beside it. "Not bad," is her verdict to Yed, but there's a happy glow in her eyes.
Antares "So," she says after a thirsty drink with barely a grimace, "You broke up with Asterope over your hair?"
Yed "It's complicated."
Maia "Well, you're playing the bass!" Maia yells over her shoulder. "It's not like you have a lot of work to do!"
Yed "We staged a break-up so that I could get highlighter hair."
Yed , remembering, takes another drink.
Antares considers that for a second, then shakes her head a little fuzzily. "Nope, still doesn't make any sense."
Yed "Parents think I have a girlfriend. Parents won't allow physical alteration for a girl. Asterope wants me to have highlighter hair. Staged a break-up so I could legitimately get it."
Yed "Busted headlight."
Maia comes over in time to hear the end of this. "Why does Asty want you to have highlighter hair?"
Yed "I don't know. Something about Furud."
Maia "That seriously doesn't make any sense at all."
Yed "You girls know Furud? Tall guy, that hat all the time?"
Maia "You see that, right?"
Maia "Yeah, we know Furry."
Antares "Remind me to return his car before I go home."
Yed "Anyway." Yed finishes the beer, and then resolves never to drink the last of a can again.
Yed "Um, right. Passed on the no-headlight car for a stolen car."
Yed "So are you going to Merope's party? I heard she rented one of those moonwalk things."
Maia "Yeah, Antares here is my date." Maia drapes an arm around her and steals her beer.
Antares "Bitch. You'll be there, right Yed? You and Asterope can do an instant replay for the rest of us."
Antares "Also, you can get drunk and throw up on the football team, then take a swing at your parents when they show up to drag you home." Antares is getting into her plan.
Yed "Right. If she lugs Icy Hot and a baseball bat to the party. I'll be there."
Yed "Um, the football /field/?"
Maia "Why would the football field be at the party?"
Maia "You don't make any sense like half the time, Yed. Are you drunk?"
Yed "Is one enough?"
Antares eyes him. "For you, maybe. You should sneak out to play music more often, though. You're good at it."
Yed "Thanks!" Yed looks pretty drunk.
Yed "Um, I don't feel so good."
Yed "I didn't eat dinner; will this be a problem?"
Antares "Not for me--it's not my floor."
Antares slides sideways in case Maia punches her.
Maia "How much not good do you feel?"
Yed "Just woozy. Blurry."
Yed "What happens now?"
Maia "You keep feeling that way for like two hours?"
Maia "Don't worry, you'll be fine."
Maia "Do you feel like doing stuff that you would ordinarily think of as kinda dumb?"
Antares "Maia and I were maybe going to go pick up guys, but you might be too young to watch that."
Yed clears his throat. "Let's go pick up guys."
Maia "Uh, I think we might be trying to pick up different kinds of guys here."
Antares chokes on her beer.