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Scene Title Cancellation
Synopsis Something unexpected has come up, leading August to cancel date night.
Date July 6, 2021

Waking up in not his body was a strange experience. Immediately, even before opening his eyes, August could tell that he hadn’t magically turned back into himself overnight. The tickle of hair across his cheek, the fact his feet were still several inches above the edge of the mattress were more obvious clues than the internal differences between himself and Kara that are harder to quantify, harder to name.

Groaning, he reaches for his phone; it looks strange to him still in Kara’s smaller hands. He squints at the date and the hour, surprised to see it a little later than he expected. The room’s curtains do a good job of blocking out the morning light, and without the sun or his dog to wake him, he’s slept a good two hours more than usual. Scrolling up, he heads to his messages, finding the conversation with Kay. After staring at it a moment, he sighs

August Yeats
Tue, July 6, at 8:33 am
Hey, Kay. I hate to do this last minute, but I need to cancel for tonight. Possibly Friday too but I’ll let you know if I can shift things. I’ll try to make it up to you.

He makes a face at the wording of shift things – he likes wordplay, but this pun was unintended, and not funny, not right now.

As it often does when he texts — regardless of the hour, it seems — his phone lights up with a reply.

Kay Damaris
Tue, July 6, at 8:34 am
I’m sorry to hear that. Are you doing okay? Even if we don’t get to see each other, I can drop something off if you need it.

That opener might sound insincere, especially from someone from a corporate background, but it's not like she hasn’t had to cancel a date for a work emergency before. It’s more likely she’s genuine than she isn’t.

Elsewhere, Kay stares at the text displayed on her glasses for a moment longer, even after she’s sent the reply, before letting her eyes refocus on the people across the table from her. The slope of her brow briefly betrays her disappointment, but she covers for it and her momentary lapse in attention with a hint of feigned annoyance. “I’m sorry. Run that past me again?” When in doubt, make them think they could be in trouble.

The offer to bring him something when she likely assumes he’s all the way over in Staten draws a smile to his – Kara’s – face, and August rubs a hand over his eyes. The feel of his hand, too small, over the unfamiliar features is still strange to him, as is just about everything else in this body.

He considers his answer for a few moments before he begins to type, but even then, the three dots appear and disappear a few times, on her end, before the message appears.

August Yeats
Tue, July 6, at 8:40 am
That’s sweet of you. I’m not actually at home and I have someone stopping by to take care of Argos but…

He sends that much, then frowns, unsure of how much he wants to ask of her, how much he wants to reveal to her. August stares at the screen, like it might give him the answer, but then types again.

August Yeats
Tue, July 6, at 8:43 am
If you want to do me a solid and pick up Argos that would be amazing. If you can’t keep him with you, he can get boarded. I just don’t want to leave him alone for… I’m not sure how long it’s going to be. I can pay for it but right now I can’t get to the money for it.

August Yeats
Tue, July 6, at 8:43 am
But if you can’t it’s OK

“Everybody just shut the fuck up.” Kay lifts her index finger toward the ceiling, pushing her hand toward those that would pull her attention away from the text that pops appears in the periphery of her vision. That ellipsised but already put her on edge, and it took restraint to show patience and wait for him to respond in his own time. At least the earlier assurance of making it up to her allayed her fears that she was about to get broken up with in the middle of one of the more distasteful meetings she’s had to sit through in a while.

Getting up from her seat, she paces away three steps and gives her back to the room. Her arms cross over her chest to convey further irritation and discourage anyone from interrupting her as she composes the message in her mind. There’s no telltale three dots bouncing along in sequence to indicate she’s texting him back; there almost never is. It simply arrives.

Fully formed from the head of Tisiphone.

Kay Damaris
Tue, July 6, at 8:44 am
You know I don’t care about the money. Don’t offer it again or I’ll make you wear a tie on our next date.

She’s not serious. Well, maybe a little, but she’s trying to slowly instill in him that money does not equate to equity in their relationship.

Kay Damaris
Tues, July 6, at 8:44 am
I’ll pick him up tonight. ‘Ella will be over the moon to have a dog to spoil for a little while.
What’s going on? Your mother come in from out of town or something?

He knows she’s aware that his mother died when he was young. What she’s asking is if he’s safe.

The first reply draws a chuckle that’s not as low as his and draws another shake of August’s head at the utter dysmorphia that makes everything just wrong – even though Kara’s body is probably in much better health than his own. He grimaces in a little sympathy for Cooper and wonders how he’s doing in a body that’s definitely going to be feeling a little off without the cocktail that August regularly supplies himself with.

There’s a sigh of relief at the second – it’s not a small ask, even if Kay makes it seem like it. Argos is a giant dog, and going out to Staten Island any time is an ordeal.

This time it takes a few more minutes and more ellipses as he considers the answer to that question. Instead, the first reply he sends is simply logistics.

August Yeats
Tue, July 6, at 8:50 am
I appreciate that so much. The keypad code is 6174 and he has plenty of food in the kitchen. His leash is probably on top of the fridge.

A few more minutes pass, and a few more of those bouncing dots if she’s looking at her phone. August would be aghast if he knew she was in the midst of a meeting – he rarely texts her when he knows she’s working unless it’s a quick reply or confirmation to plans.

August Yeats
Tue, July 6, at 8:55 am
I’m safe. Some weird stuff going on but no one’s hurt. I’m in a sort of … sequester? Not quite a quarantine. SESA is here. FUN! 😏😅 They’re nice enough. I’m definitely the odd man out with a couple others but they seem to know each other too so it’s a little strange. I’d say more but it’s kind of weird and embarrassing TBH but you shouldn’t worry. I’m hoping everything will be ironed out in the next couple of days.

None of what he’s offered, apart from the instructions on how to get into his home without just doing it her own way, gives her much comfort. But if it was something she needed to drop everything for to go handle, he’d tell her.

Well, no, he wouldn’t. The man has pride and would never let on if he needed that kind of help, she’s pretty sure, but it doesn’t seem like this is that. If he’d been arrested, he probably wouldn’t have even mentioned SESA, so it’s probably not a bail money and lawyers kind of situation. Given that there are more pressing things on her agenda, which she’s currently leveling a flat look at from across the room, this can wait.

Kay Damaris
Tue, July 6, at 9:01 am
Alright. I’ll call you when I get Argos back to my place tonight. If you need anything in the meantime, let me know.
Talk soon, handsome. Take care.

August has managed to at least sit up by this time, staring down at legs shorter and slimmer than his which is unnerving, even though the shock has worn off a little by now. He frowns a little at the message, a pang of guilt at Kay’s willingness to help him when he’s not being open with her.

He doesn’t type for a couple of minutes this time, but eventually those three little dots begin to appear and disappear a few times before the message arrives.

August Yeats
Tue, July 6, at 9:10 am
You’re an absolute lifesaver. I really appreciate it. FTR I didn’t do anything but be at the wrong place at the wrong time. I guess I should be glad the SESA agents were there to keep a handle on things but you know. Government. I have trust issues. LOL. They seem all right though.
I appreciate you. ❤️ Sorry to interrupt your morning.

That sent, he rises with a groan to stumble toward the shower, with a mental apology to the real Kara.

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