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Raya's apartment, Emerald City, Oregon

September 30, 2019



Groggily, Raya opened her eyes to find herself staring up at her ceiling. There was a slight throbbing in her temples, and her mouth was dry and tasted like salt and alcohol. Shifting, she felt a presence next to her, and turned to see a slumbering face next to her. A smile crept over Raya's lips, but it faded following a sharp spear of a headache running through her skull. 


Sighing, she sat up, and saw three empty bottles of champagne sitting next to a bucket full of water and some rapidly disappearing ice cubes. "Ah, man... Those are like a thousand bucks each..." After giving herself a moment to chastise herself, she rose from bed and went over to her drawer. Looking in mirror atop it, she saw her hair had gotten wild and her eyes were slightly red. She shrugged, and pulled on some stretch pants and a Compass Rose sweater that dropped down off her left shoulder.


She wandered into her vast living room, taking a look at the Emerald City skyline from her windows, before flopping down on her leather couch in front of her coffee table, and more importantly, her 150 inch TV. Her setup was impressive in the living room, art pieces and trophies from adventures hanging on the walls. A Brazilian flag sat between two abstract pieced, a little reminder of her heritage.


"Hey, SmartHome... Start morning routine, and place an order for two fiesta breakfasts for room service," she croaked, rubbing at her eyes. She saw a small flash of light from a device on her coffee table, and it chirped "Alright. Done." Raya heard the hiss of her percolator coming to life, and sank deeper into her seat.


Flipping on the TV, she called up Netflix and began to watch her 'toons as she waited for her new companion to wake up.

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Yawning as she rose from the almost unfamiliar setting, she looked around with a smile. Raya was not here at the moment. Remembering last night with so much clarity. It was one of the few she dates she really remembered. And then afterwards. Retiring to... wait, she was in Emerald City!


Bounding up happily, she clothed herself in a near by robe that was a little too big on her. She followed the noise of cartoons to the living room. She was looking for Raya, but the scenery as she wandered around grabbed her too. This place was very nice. Standing behind the couch, she looked over Raya, "good morning, love," she said before leaning down for a kiss. "Your place is as lovely in the light as it is in the dark."


She rounded the couch and sat next to Raya, "I'm guessing either no plans for today and we're good to go or, well," she leaned her head on Raya's shoulder, "cartoons," she asked with a smile. "I'm cool with that too." Not that she wasn't a fan of them. It had been a while since she actually sat down and watched them.

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Raya returned the kiss with a lazy smile. "Good mornin'," she said softly. "An' thanks. Yeah, this floor doesn't have the pool or the gym but it's pretty good," she said.


She accepted Moira into her space and wrapped an arm around her, then laid her head on top of the demigoddess' own. She kept watching the TV, but she was still listening to Moira all the same. "I didn't forget about the tour, just uh... I ordered breakfast and coffee's brewing... And..." she paused to yawn. "I gotta take a shower and stuff..."


On the TV, Avatar flickered on the screen. One of the later seasons, when they were in the Fire Nation undercover. The heroes were watching a play about themselves. Raya's eyes flicked over to Moira.


"We were up pretty late last night. I wasn't expecting you to be up, yet."

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Moira smiled as Raya got closer, "yeah, I'm a light sleeper. I was once able to go without sleep. I enjoyed 24 hour days. But that was a different time." She looked at her wrist. The golden bracer wasn't on as much as it used to be. She did enjoy her conversations with her parents and friends on Olympus, but being with Raya felt more like true private time. She hoped they were OK with that. Unlike last time.


"Breakfast and a shower sounds nice," she said trying to steer the conversation away from the place she unintentionally took it. The giant guy dressed as the little girl shouting suddenly caught her off guard, she laughed. "After this." She looked up at Raya, watching her enjoyment of the episode. Her being happy made Moira happy.

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The morning routine passed fairly quickly, mostly going through the motions. The fiesta breakfast had been good, a combination of eggs, salsa, chorizo sausage and other goodies that Raya rather enjoyed with her coffee. Everything else passed just as smoothly.


Now Raya was sitting back on the couch, her hair still a little wet, smiling over Moira. She had some clothes in the woman's size brought up, one of many little gifts. Raya herself had changed into a pink hoodie and blue jeans, which was a little more presentable than her lounging clothes. Only light makeup today, some eyeliner and a little lip gloss


"So," she said. "I am ready to go whenever you are. Do you want to walk or should I ring my driver or... What?"

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The clothes were her normal style of dress. Jeans and a t-shirt that fit her form very well, some comfortable sandals. Then again, this set of clothes were probably worth more than everything in her closet. She felt awesome. Slipping on her golden bracer, a slow trickle of thoughts from Aphrodite. The two conversed in small talk, but Moira was interested in Raya at the moment.


"I am a walker, yeah. A bit of a fast one if I do say so myself," she beamed. "I promise not to outrun you. Why would I," she smirked nudging against her. She shrugged, "or, driving is nice. A bit less interactive."

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Raya rolled her eyes playfully at the nudging. She's too cute, Raya thought to herself. "Alright, if you're a walker, we'll walk. I can call a driver if we get tired anyway."


She took Moira's hand again, and lead her to the apartment's high speed elevator that existed in place of a door. There were no stairs to get into Raya's room, you needed access to the elevator, and to get into the elevator, you needed a key. Raya kind of felt bad about that, but it kept the snoops out.


Stepping inside, Raya smiled at Moira the whole time they went down. Once they made it to the ground floor, Raya lead the out into the morning daylight. "Alright, so, first part of the tour. We are out in the ritzy part of the Oregon side of Emerald City, in which I am only one of a bunch of rich jerks driving up the property value. Some richer and jerkier than others."


She waved at the door greeter before starting to walk. "Royal Hill, more specifically. A lot of people also live in a place called Lakeside but, ah, I am not a mansion kind of gal."


Just then, a man walking two dogs came by, and Raya's eyes lit up. "My babies!" she said, scurrying over. The dogs almost jerked the poor man's arm off, but he managed to right them. Raya crouched down and the dogs were all over her in seconds.


"Aaa! I was wondering where they were," she said. "You took them out for a walk?"


The man nodded. "You seemed preeeetty trashed last night and I didn't figure you'd be up yet."


Raya quirked her mouth. "Mike, I have a better constitution than that," she said sourly. "Anyway! Moira, this is Mike Dayton, my personal assistant and superhuman for being able to put up with me."


Mike waved, smiling at Moira. "Pleasure."


"And THESE furry beasts are Dre and Diddy, my dogs. If you want to pet them, go ahead. They're useless as guard dogs because they just want to be friends with everyone."


The dogs, a beagle and a poodle, looked up at Moira, their tails wagging furiously.

Edited by Shofet
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Moira stayed quiet for a little bit, letting Raya explain things. The whole rich thing really didn't bother her. Yes, the spoiling was nice, but even if not, the trip was worth it. Raya herself was worth it. Thoughts of a fun day swam in her mind.


She saw the dogs before the dog walker. the two little dogs caught her eyes as soon as she heard them walking up. Kneeling down to pet them, as Raya and Mike talked. She stood up when she was introduced to the dog walker, "hey. Nice to finally meet you, Mike," she said with a grin. She remembered him, if by face only. Not that she was paying attention to anyone but Raya last night.


If she were to pay any more attention to the dogs, there wouldn't have been a day with her date. She pulled away from the love and attention she was giving them and they were giving her. Nodding to Mike as he lead them away. "If I had the time I'd have a pet," she said holding on to Raya's arm. "So, Emerald City," she laughed lightly.

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Raya blew kisses at the dogs as she moved away with her date, before turning to look at Moira with a bit more twinkle to her eye than there was before. 


"Yeah, the Emerald City. Technically, cities. Like how Newark and New York are separate cities because they are separated by state borders. However, in order to be extra confusing, they have the same name. We're pretty diverse, got a huge Asian population. Indian, Chinese, Japanese. Maybe when we hit Mini Mumbai I can treat you to some curry," she said. 


She looked out at the street, and then back at Moira. "So by the way, do you just wanna look at stuff or go shopping or what? Because that helps me narrow down what I am showing you. Of course, if you stay for a while, could probably get you a good look at everything."

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Curry did sound nice, but they had just eaten. Moira had heard very little about the city on the east coast. She'd heard there were a few heroes there, which was good. Every city outside of Freedom needed some kind of protector. There's was Emerald Spider, if she remembered correctly. She didn't know the extent of Raya's dealings with heroism in the city. "I'd actually like to learn a little bit about the place. See the big stuff."


Reaching for her phone on her hip and pressing a button, "Emerald City news." The phone beeped telling her of the recent goings on. A few stuck out in her mind, wanting to ask Raya about them. "So, what do you do here," she posited, "this isn't bustling like Freedom. Or is this just a quiet little pit stop for you?" She looked to Raya, "Don't get me wrong, I'm not knocking it! I do love the seeming peacefulness."

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Raya couldn't help but snort at the idea that the Emerald Cities were quiet. "Oh, honey," she said. "Don't let the rep fool you, this place is weird. One of my best friends in this city is a kid without a face who controls fear and happens to be a conspiracy theorist. There's also a rock monster who is a super hero, too. Not to mention I fought a dude who could turn people into criminals"


The news feed was boring, compared to Freedom City's. Stocks going up, some protests, comments from the mayor on something, probably about reelection. Nothing worth checking. Nothing at all. Everything is fine.


"And we can do big stuff," she said. "Do you want to see the Wizard of Oz museum? Or maybe Chantal Theatre. One of the only theatres left in the US that stuff has a floor for bands to play. Like for silent movies. Could also bring you to some of the company campuses. Like Compass Roooose? Eh? Eh? That's my company. We do space stuff."


"I mean I mostly get my money from patents but I want to help contribute to getting us up into the stars. Anyway, we also have stuff like MarsTech. Could also show you the university."

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Moira nodded with interest as Raya went on about the weird parts of the up and coming city. "Well. I'm sure The Emerald Spider and the rock monster and maybe even you have your hands full!" She tapped the phone again to shut off the talking. Nothing grabbed her attention anyway. "But yeah, I need to hear about these things. I do enjoy an exciting story told. Second best thing to being there."


The list of landmarks caught her attention. She would take pictures of the museum for Lynn. "Oh that's right," she said thinking out loud, "I do have a kind of connection here. My roommate's ex lives her and runs a shop. Gretchen. I do not remember that girl's last name." It didn't matter, just something off the top of her head. "As for your business," she stood up prim and proper, which looked silly in the clothes she was in, "I can type 75 words per minute and have no references. I'm looking for fifty thousand a year. I can start on Monday." She broke 'character' with a laugh, "imagine me as a secretary."


She nodded, "but I will take a look at anything you're that proud of! Can't wait to see the space gadgets and gizmos you guys cook up."

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Raya giggled at the secretary offer. “Unfortunately, I have a very nice woman named Victoria who would fight you if you tried to take her job. That and she makes me cookies every Friday and honestly, that’s pretty much earned her the job for life,” she said sunnily.


“But if you want a story, a month or two ago this guy called Captain Crime showed up, like out of nowhere, and started blasting people with this… Crime Gun. Turned people into stereotypical criminals. I had this guy, Rebellion, helping me on the case. We chased the guy back to my company’s transmitter, and then a whole bunch of weird stuff happened. Turns out the guy was from another dimension, go figure,” she said.


“But okay. It’s going to be a long walk to my company, so we’ll be able to see stuff on the way,” she said.

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