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Interdomum ~ Between the Scenes; Closed
Topic Started: Mar 10 2018, 11:08 PM (259 Views)
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A quiet rapping on the door.

So he lived in a place like this? They never told her about it before. Seemed almost as shabby as their place back home, but then they never did have much money.

Ada shuffled awkwardly in place, unsure of why we she felt so nervous and more nervous for feeling so unsure. Just had to keep her expectations low. Shouldn't take it personally, he's not really that person here anyhow.

She knocked again, immediately regretting it. Was it too soon after the first knock? Did it sound desperate or impatient? He was always so hard to read...

Ada fiddled with the handle in her other hand, rolling the suitcase it was attached to back and forth. She hated how much she fidgeted.

Maybe he wasn't home. That might be preferable.
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The door opened, but it wouldn’t be who Ada was expecting. Instead of the certain young man, she would see a young woman with long raven hair and blue eyes. Sophia looked at the unfamiliar girl before her and titled her head in curiosity. “Yes? Can I help you?”

She had no idea who this girl was, or what she was doing here. Seth never mentioned that they might be getting a visitor. He was out for work at the moment, so she couldn’t exactly ask him. The girl was holding a suitcase, maybe she was moving into the apartments and got lost.
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"Geeze, it's about time you-- eh?" Ada looked up at the unfamiliar face with her mouth half open, turning her head from the doorway to the path behind her.

"Oh!" She finally managed to stammer out, putting on her best (nervous) smile to cover up her her flustered first impression. "Actually, sorry I probably have the wrong place, I was actually looking for Seth Ryouga, the famous detective?" Actually he didn't seem that famous, but improvisation was hard. "Does he, er, live around here?"

Ada tried her best to come across as polite instead a hot mess, but she'd always been intimidated by mature women. Maybe because she tried so hard to look like one it felt like the real thing might just see right through her...

She was sure she'd gotten the address right...
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Seth Ryouga the famous detective, huh?

He had been working hard, so it’s good to hear that Seth was finally getting some recognition for his work. If this keeps up, it might be time for them to get a proper office. Discussing cases in the living room of their home wouldn’t be professional after all.

“I’m afraid he’s not in right now.” Since she brought that up, the girl was probably looking to hire Seth for a case or something. “I’m his partner, Sophia. Did you have a case that you wanted him to handle? If you’d like you can wait inside and we can discuss the details while we wait for him to come back.”
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Not in. Should've thought about that, called ahead or something. She was definitely getting way too comfortable with this situation, even if she was only here just to screw with him a little.

"I-Is that right?" She said with nervous laugh. Ok, partner. Yeah that made sense. He's a detective and detective's need a partner. But... why her? Did mom really not do anything in this universe? Working out of a residence seemed really strange too, but every business has to start somewhere, she supposed.

So...

What's she supposed to say now?

"Ah...oh! Actually, no I don't have a case or anything, I actually...need..." Oh come on, just lie! Say anything! "a place to stay..." Anything but that you idiot!

Ada flinched at her own words, attempting a natural sounding laugh. If she'd said it to Seth it would've really annoyed the hell out of him as intended. Saying it to her though actually sounded sad and desperate. Not that she didn't actually need a place, but it was weird asking this stranger!

Actually she might be the stranger in this situation...
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“…A place to stay?” Sophia raised an eyebrow as she repeated those last words. That was a very strange thing to ask. She and Seth ran a detective agency, not a hotel or even an Airbnb. Maybe this girl had gotten that confused?

“I’m afraid you’re looking in the wrong place then.” The apartment was just big enough for Sophia and Seth, so they couldn’t really take in anyone for any reason. “I can direct you to the renting office if you’d like though.”

Still… there was something odd about all this. This girl asked for Seth by name and knew that he was a detective, but then came to ask for a place to stay? Maybe the ads they put out needed some tweaks…
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"...Oh." Well, that was a reasonable response.

But she was totally misunderstanding the situation.

So Ada did what came most naturally to her in situations like this. "Ah, I'm afraid you don't understand," she said, trying her best to sound as calm and mature as the woman before her, "my name is Ada Ryouga, I'm a relative of his."

As always, when backed into a corner, Ada intended to lie her way out. She smiled casually, leaning in with all the confidence she could muster. People always said she looked more like her aunt than her dad, maybe she'd get lucky and wouldn't have to answer too many questions. Was it ok to cause him this much trouble, though? She was actually starting to feel a little guilty...
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… Hmm.

Let’s be honest here, Sophia was becoming more and more suspicious of this girl, even more so now that she claimed to be Seth’s relative. “… Seth never said anything about having a relative named Ada, let alone that you would be coming.” As far as she knew, Sena was the only relative he had. And having been with Seth for so long, Sophia was confident that he would have told her about his family, especially if they were going to be visiting.

The way Ada was seemingly trying to push herself into the apartment and that forced smile wasn’t helping her case either. Sophia stood her ground and crossed her arms. “Sorry, but I’m afraid I can’t let you in.” If it was a client that was one thing, but a complete stranger claiming to be Seth’s relative was too suspicious. “If you want you can wait out here until Seth comes back. I’ll give him a call in the meantime.”
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Alright, reassess. Was calling Seth actually a bad thing? Their last encounter wasn't exactly encouraging, but he at least didn't seem to hate her...

Was that enough that he'd lie to his partner for her? Her plan to pressure him into letting her stay was getting more complicated by the second. However, it was difficult for her to come up with anything else on the spot like this. She didn't know anything about the person in front of her. This lady had already called her bluff and if she backed down now she'd have to blow her whole savings on a stupid hotel!

The only way forward was to double down!

"Hah! That's a laugh coming from someone who's only his partner. I hope you don't value your job very much." She said, looking down across her nose using her snobbiest tone. If nothing else, it might just piss her off and Ada was open to small victories after the week she'd had. "Go ahead and call him, but don't be surprised if he makes you apologize for making his own flesh and blood wait out in the cold like this!" Ada feigned a shiver, clutching her sides as she nearly fainted in the bitter-cold 17° Celsius weather.

All those elementary and junior high theater auditions she made her mom sew costumes for? Totally worth it.
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"A subtropical island like this place can only barely reach above zero degrees at night," A factual statement accompanied by sounds of cracking from behind the girl. "It barely snowed longer than a day, and winter is already over. In fact, this might be some of the warmest places you could find across all of Japan,"

No thanks to global warming, too.

There's really no need to call for Seth since he's already here in person, looking pretty menacing standing in the hallway with a bag of empty convenience store lunch box in his hand. "...Sophie, I really want burger,"

Or not.
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Only his partner?

Well it’s not surprising that Ada would think that way, even if it annoyed her a bit. Sophia left out the part about also being Seth’s girlfriend because she wanted to be professional and thought Ada was a client. But now that she stated otherwise (not to mention how she was being quite rude at this point), Sophia didn’t see much reason to tolerate the upstart behaviour anymore. “Your act isn’t fooling anyone. If you insist on causing more trouble I’ll have to…”

Before Sophia could finish her statement, she was interrupted by a familiar face. Good thing too, maybe now that Seth was here they could finally resolve this silly farce. She left the apartment to meet her boyfriend out in the hall and greeted him with a quick kiss on the lips. “We can go get some later, but for now…”

She turned to give Ada an impassive glance. “This girl claims to be Ada Ryouga and says she’s a relative of yours.” Sophia still didn’t buy that, not one bit, but maybe if Seth were to deny it outright Ada would finally give up. “Is that true?”
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"It's still cruel to make a poor high school student pay for a hotel or sleep outside..." She said, shrinking and trying to make herself look as small and sad as possible as she flashed Seth her best sad, desperate expression. "Though I guess I could find a random stranger somewhere who might take in a young, desperate girl, I'm sure guys like that exist..." Ada let her gaze fall to the ground, her hands fidgeting demurely with her nails.

"Anyway," she said, turning her attention to his 'partner', "it's totally obvious now that he's standing right here that we're related. I mean, look at these elbows, how can you even pretend you don't see the resemblance?" She grabbed Seth's arm, holding up his elbow next to her own for emphasis. You just couldn't argue evidence like that!

"So if that's all you've got to say, I don't like my burger overcooked, medium rare is fine. You can do that, right?" She added a dismissive wave of her hand to go with her cocky smile, still hanging on to Seth's arm. "That's why they say blood is thicker than water, right? I guess a business partner just can't compete with that kind of bond, right Seth? Right?"
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A blank dead fish stare into the void.

She's definitely being desperate and difficult, that's for sure.

"Sophie actually still can't cook very well," The young man added lazily as he lifted his arm, easily pulling the girl off the floor with it by the elbow if she didn't let go. "And sure, she's probably no match against a distant relative as a 'business partner'..." A bit of an annoyed stare at Ada. He thought he told her that unless it's really important they should remain as complete strangers with each other.

He shook his arm to shake her off of him.

"...But she's my girlfriend. And we live together here," He finished, tapping the nameplate just outside the apartment next to the front door, bearing both Seth and Sophia's name.
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By now it was becoming increasingly clear that Ada was just here to cause trouble. Each lie she was spouting was shallower than the last, and even the so-called ‘proof’ she presented was desperate at best. Despite all that, she still had the nerve to treat Sophia like a lowly servant? After seeing the young woman greet Seth with a kiss, on the lips no less, Ada had to be either willfully ignorant or just delusional to still think Sophia was just a ‘business partner’.

It took a lot for Sophia to not just snap at the girl, but fortunately Seth personally clearing things up did help calm her down. She couldn’t help but give Ada a satisfied look once Seth shook the girl off his arm though. “Like he said, I’m his girlfriend and this is our home. We’ve been living here together for more than a year now.” Just to make it absolutely clear, she took hold of her boyfriend’s arm and pulled him away. “So I would appreciate it if someone who has no relation or business with us would leave us alone.”
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"R-Really, but even something like that..." Ada said, looking a bit more nervous even as she tried her best to nonchalantly toss her hair. "Aren't relatives just as important as long... term...?" Well, she obviously wasn't buying that story anyway.

Ada sighed, her affect falling into her usual dulled expression. It was actually somewhat of a relief. Acting like that was starting to get embarrassing. Not that any of this was any less humiliating. "Look," she said plainly, turning her attention to Seth. "I didn't come to you first if it makes you feel any better. My landlord found out about that... thing..." She glanced awkwardly over at Sophie, but ultimately decided discretion wasn't doing her much good here. That lady was already pretty suspicious of her.

"He found out about the arrest and he kicked me out, ok?" Ada spouted out in a quick, exasperated breath. She huffed, avoiding looking directly at either of them. "I just need some place to sleep for the night. You don't have to say yes or anything, I'll find something either way. I just thought..." That she'd head back to live with her daddy like some university drop out? She didn't cross the boundary between universes to start this up again, did she?

"Actually, y'know what? Geeze." Ada said, beaming a smile as she knocked herself jokingly on the head with her knuckles. "I just thought of someplace else I can stay. I can't believe I didn't think of that sooner. I'm really sorry for intruding on you both like this. I guess desperation makes fools of us all." She laughed as convincingly as she could manage and grabbed the handle of her rolling suitcase.

The sooner she got out of here the better.
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See, wasn't it simpler to just be honest from the very beginning?

Then again, he supposed admitting to being kicked out of her place due to being arrested by the police probably wouldn't have put her in anyone's good book.

But whatever, who cares, problem is solved anyway, since... "Okay then," Seth smiled lazily with a quick wave of his hand and slid right into the apartment. "Good luck with that place~"

He has quite a lot to explain to Sophia in the meantime.
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Sophia’s eyes darted between Seth and Ada, still not sure what was going on. While she still didn’t believe that the two were related, it seemed like they knew each other at least a little. Seth had some explaining to do, but at least this mess was over with.

“Wait.” As Ada grabbed her suitcase, Sophia returned to the apartment and returned a moment later with a bag of some leftover bread they had in the fridge. “Here, take this.” There was no way she could let a stranger stay in their home, but the young woman could spare some food for the girl, just in case the situation really was as desperate as she claimed. “Don’t cause any more trouble, okay?”

With that she followed Seth into their apartment, and closed the door behind them.
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Ada looked from Sophia to Seth, feeling something ugly inside herself. Something she didn't want to feel, but to which part of her was begging to surrender to. She looked at the bag of bread in her hand and at the suitcase in the other as they closed the door behind them.

"... At least I have a pillow for the night." She remarked to herself, giving the cold loaf a squeeze. Ultimately, the urge to scream, the tears threatening to well up in her eyes were just childish sentimentality. Turning away someone at your doorstep, whether they were your children or complete strangers, that was what it meant to be an adult. Her mother would tell her to be less naive, it was her own fault for falling into that trap. She wasn't a kid anymore, and it ultimately did her no good to rely on others.

Ada reached into her pocket, producing from it a photo in a plastic sleeve, a sort of portable frame. A picture of her father and her when she was about ten, taken by her mom sat in it, slightly worn from the distances it had traveled with her. The only picture she happened to have on her when she ran away. Just another reminder of why she'd left to begin with. The smiles they both had on their faces, as far as she was concerned, belonged to two different people.

Ada tossed it against the door of the apartment and turned to leave. She had no more connection to the girl in that picture.
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"...She obviously faked it, you know," Seth mentioned offhandedly to his girlfriend, tossing the empty plastic lunch box into the bin before reaching over to the couch in the living room to flop on. "And if she's complaining about paying for capsule hotels, there's no way she can scrounge up enough to rent an apartment,"

They're lucky enough Plato apartment was cheap to begin with, but even then there are a lot of other fees to pay.

Seth glanced outside at the evening light.

...Even if it is a pretty warm place compared to the rest of Japan, it can still get pretty cold at night. He himself should know, with how much he couldn't stand the cold.

The young man sighed. "Jeez..." He muttered under his breath. "...A private investigator isn't charity work, seriously,"

He wasn't sure why he spoke out loud. He wasn't sure if he could even say that either, considering most of his 'detective work' had so far pretty much amounted to doing various random errands and odd jobs for the occasional strangers.
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