mathletenomore: (freaks)
[personal profile] mathletenomore
Lindsay had been home a day already, and it almost seemed as though she had never left. She was surprised at how happy her parents were to see her. She didn't think think they'd ever forgive her for skipping the academic summit at University of Michigan to follow the Dead. Perhaps being separated from her for the summer made them realize how much they missed her. Distance and all.

Seeing her brother and his friends sitting around the dining room table eating junk food and playing Dungeons and Dragons when she stepped into the house last night was all very familiar. A typical Friday evening in the Weir house. Bill's dorky wave and Neal's fascination with anything she said was normal, too.

She wondered why it was she still felt so completely out of place? Not just because she didn't play D&D. After spending so much time in Fandom, everything here seemed so...abnormal. Normalcy, it seemed, became the bizarre.

After calling Kim, who was pretty much the best friend Lindsay had at the moment, they made plans to meet outside the convenience store they often frequented the next night, where they'd meet up with their other friends. Lindsay was nervous about seeing them after being away for so long. Mostly, she was afraid it would be much the same, that she'd feel out of place even among her friends.

Now it was Saturday evening. She had gotten there before Kim and Daniel. So while Ken and Amy were adorably cuddling on the hood of his car, Lindsay stood off to the side of the car awkwardly with Nick. That's what happened when one was sort of alone with his or her ex, right? And he had that familiar glazed stoner look he had nearly the entire time she knew him. Last time she saw him, he had given pot up for his last girlfriend Sarah and become a fan of disco. Which made her wonder if they were still together.

"How was camp?" Nick asked, making the first attempt at conversation.

She couldn't tell him what it was really like. "It was interesting. Sorta like what I imagine the academic summit to have been like. I had this math teacher who was crazier than Kowchevski."

"So I broke up with Sarah," Nick shared. Lindsay wasn't surprised he hadn't even heard a word she said.

"Oh, really?" That didn't surprise her either. "I thought you two were happy?"

She knew better, as did her other friends. He only dated Sarah to try to get Lindsay back, not because he wanted to actually move on.

"Yeah, well, the disco closed down, you know? Like a week after you left," Nick explained. "And I told Sarah I thought disco was lame. Sorta doomed after that. And she was too into me. You know?"

Lindsay knew how that was all too well. It was the whole reason she didn't want to be with him.

Nick had that look in his eyes like he was going to get all mopey on her and make her feel guilty like he often did. Thankfully, Daniel's car pulled up into a parking space, and he and Kim hopped out to meet the rest of the group.

"Look who finally decided to grace us with their presence," Ken snarked.

"Lindsay, good to see you," Daniel said, pointedly ignoring Ken. "So how was prison camp?"

That caused the others to break out into laughter, Lindsay included.

"Seriously, though, did they make you sing Kumbaya and participate in weird arts and crafts and shit?" Kim pressed on.

"Nah. It was kinda like school," Lindsay said honestly. "It wasn't so bad."

"That's cause you like school, Brain," Kim said, though it was said with affection.

Lindsay smiled, though she was still feeling weirdly out of place. She didn't like feeling this way. She was supposed to feel comfortable with her friends.

"I'm going to get some pop. Anyone want anything?" Kim asked the group.

"Get me some beer," Ken demanded. Amy swatted at his arm.

"Whatever. Get it yourself, Jesus," Kim replied, referring to the name on his fake ID.

"Some Twinkies! Oh, and some cheese doodles," Nick said, snickering. Yeah, he was totally high.

Kim rolled her eyes before heading into the store. Ken and Amy went back to talking to each other, while Nick just stared off at...whatever.

"Didn't see you playing D&D last night," Lindsay said to Daniel teasingly. "Sam told me about that."

"Hey, no mocking. I found something I'm actually good at for a change," Daniel said, though the smile indicated to her that he didn't mind her teasing.

"I don't know. I've always thought you were good at reading people," Lindsay said, shrugging.

Daniel glanced pointedly at her. "Maybe you're right about that. For instance, I know something's up with you. How was the camp, really?"

Lindsay shrugged again. "Is it bad that I...kinda want to stay there? I mean, I like hanging with all of you. I missed it. It's just..."

"You're feeling out of place here," Daniel finished, nodding. "I know that feeling."

"You could go to school there, too," Lindsay pointed out.

"Nah, I gotta stick around. Help my ma take care of my dad," Daniel replied. "But if you don't belong here no more, and you got a chance to get out..."

He didn't need to finish that sentence. Lindsay understood. It was good to hear it from someone else, though. "Thanks."

She had always tried to figure out where she belonged, and Fandom seemed a good fit for her. After the things she had seen and been through, she needed to be with people who understood that. She just had to figure out how to tell her parents. That was for tomorrow. Tonight, she was going to hang out with her friends and discuss random things like how awesome the latest Rush album was.

She was happy her "freak" friends had accepted her, and she'd miss them, but she knew her decision was for the best. She thought running off to follow the Grateful Dead was the answer, but even that never seemed to be the right place for her. Fandom was that place. She was sure of it.

[NFB due to distance.]


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August 2011

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