Who: Hope and Christine What: Catching up When: Today
Christine had no idea where the month had gone.
All she knew was the superstorm had set off a frightening precedent -- crisis after crisis after crisis. There had been no communication between Christine and anyone really...except the text message chain with Stephen that didn’t seem to end. Every message took days to respond to and it culminated in poor decisions that led to where it always led: angry words when Christine went over to get the one T-shirt she couldn’t live without and somehow had left there, and not the usual angry breakup sex she kinda was hoping for.
Doing the non-walk of shame in a T-shirt and scrub pants was terrible...especially when she was fairly certain she’d left her scrub top at the Sanctum.
Damnit all to hell.
Walking into the apartment, she muttered to herself as she kicked off her shoes. “Stupid Stephen. Stupid tantric sex. Stupid understanding each other so much that not being together makes more sense than being together becaues we were never fucking together in the first place.” With each statement, her volume rose and she finally groaned, kicking her bedroom door open and flipping on the light which only led her to scream loudly when she saw someone in her bed.
“Jesus Christ, Hope!” Christine placed a hand on her chest and gave a nervous giggle. “You are the worst and the best and please tell me there’s a pizza under that blanket.”
Food in bed was absolutely a thing.
It was definitely a thing, though Hope didn’t have any with her at this particular time - however, she did have a key to Christine’s apartment (for emergencies), and had fully planned to use it if the situation ever got dire. And right now, after she hadn’t heard from her best friend in forever, and shit was constantly rolling downhill, with said best friend potentially working herself to death? File that under ‘dire.’
“In the oven, keeping warm,” she assured, rolling over and hugging a pillow. “I’ll get it, and a bottle of wine, just come relax and tell me what happened.”
Clearly it had something to do with Stephen, based on those mutterings. Hope wasn’t surprised. She didn’t understand it - but she never had, and figured it wasn’t her place anyway.
Christine nodded gratefully and watched her best friend head the kitchen while Christine changed into more comfortable clothes. One tank top and cotton shorts later, she felt a bit better. Even more so when she turned Spotify on to play the greatest collection of ‘fuck men’ music she could find.
You know it’s going to be a good playlist when it starts with Alanis.
When Hope came back into the room, Chrisitne opened her arms for the wine, making the gimme motion. “I need all of this. All of it. And you.” She paused for a moment before taking a deep breath. “Stephen and I are done. Again. Which we weren’t together in the first place but yeah. AND he wouldn’t even have break up sex with me, which makes me think we really ARE done now.” She made a face. “Also, please forget this conversation in a year when we inevitably get back to whatever it is we are again.”
Hope had pizza, a whole box of it, and a bottle of wine which she uncorked - maybe they didn’t even need glasses, they could just pass the bottle back and forth like the drunkards they were. But she let Christine have first dibs, handing over the libations. The bed was where she settled, sitting pretzel style with the pizza box open and near her.
“What happened?” she asked, patting the space in front of her - and she was perfectly willing to give best friend hugs as well, but first, they’d stuff their faces. “Did you have a fight?” Which in retrospect she realized was a dumb question...
Okay, amendment to that. “Did you have an actual fight about something specific?” There we go. The breakup sex thing she wouldn’t touch for the time being, mostly because you don’t need to have breakup sex with him, Christine but surely she knew that deep down.
Wine glasses were only for guests and at this point, Hope had passed that line a while back. The bottle was good enough for Christine and she took an angry gulp before handing it to Hope.
"A fight? No, just my usual realization. Stephen is too good for anyone, and he suffers from martyrdom and he has to single handedly preserve some cosmic balance of good and evil so he can't even stop our friend from creating a superstorm that killed people which stranded Jane in weird terrorist limbo and now has the government up all in arms." There was no breath in that sentence while Christine continued, obviously riled up.
"One portal! That's all he needed to do to avoid all of this and what does he say when i point it? He highlights the fucking Welcome Brochure he gives everyone with the points about not breaking people out of jail or whatever. And you know how I know he could easily do a portal?" There was no space for Hope to answer that question. "I know because that T-shirt? The one I came home in? He opened up a motherfucking portal and threw it at me. How does that not break the rules?!"
Rationally, Christine was very aware that prison breaks and giving your non-ex back her shirt were two very different things but she was angry, damnit.
At first Hope was confused about portals and t-shirts (or actually, what t-shirts had to do with portals and jails) but then she began to piece everything together, while working on a slice of pizza and listening to Christine rant.
“It’s a tough job,” she said, referring to Stephen’s position as Master of the Mystic Arts or whatever. “I mean, both you and I know that sometimes you have to throw the rulebook out the window - but I guess he’s not willing to. Or is concerned about what it means for the balance of things.”
He may have already been acquainted with that too, considering the whole time stone debacle. And dying 6,000 times. “As much as I hate to say it too - there is someone out there for you. Someone you’re compatible with.” Her and Stephen couldn’t keep forcing shit to work, and then being surprised when it didn’t.
Besides, Hope always thought Christine was more into him than he was into her - he seemed fine being single, didn’t care. Christine deserved someone who wanted to make her happy.
Christine downed her glass and sighed, wrinkling her nose at Hope. It wasn’t that her friend was saying anything wrong but this had been going on for so long, it made it more difficult to cleanly walk away either ...which Christine knew she would probably never be able to do.
“I don’t want to get married. Or have kids. Or have a 2.5 fence with a dog or whatever those statistics are...that’s why it worked well with him. It’s always been more about the friendship anyways.” A pause. “And the sex. Oh god, Hope -- it’s amazing sex.” She gave a grin. “I can forgive a lot for that.”
Shifting in the bed, she laid her head on the headboard and reached for a slice of pizza. She took a bite and closed her eyes, chewing thoughtfully. It wasn’t until she’d almost finished it that she started talking again. “This is the first moment of downtime I’ve had in ...a month? Longer? I’d forgotten when it felt like to talk to someone about something other than bleeds or sutures or x-rays..”
Christine raised a brow. “Should I call in sick tomorrow?”
Hope rolled her eyes, jade green to the ceiling and back, but she was grinning too. And she took the wine bottle to pour some of that fermented grape juice down her throat. “First of all, as your best friend, I will tell you that just because you both don’t want the fairytale stuff doesn’t mean he’s your only option. Good sex isn’t worth the rollercoaster, in my view, but if you think it is - well, you’re a grown-ass woman.” It was ultimately Christine’s decision - Hope was just going to be there for her no matter what, and offer her opinion. Even if it was unwarranted.
“Secondly, yes,” she hiccuped, whew, that had been a bigger ‘sip’ than she thought. “Call in sick. You’ll run yourself into the ground otherwise. Doctor’s orders.”
Okay, so Hope wasn’t technically a doctor - but she was a scientist, so it counted? Sort of? She surrounded herself with idiot men who lived off of coffee in a laboratory - she knew how important proper rest was. “Thirdly - “ Wow, this was kind of turning into a long treatise here. “I’m kind of dating a woman now.”
Christine agreed with what Hope was saying and almost said so until the last sentence came out. “Wait, what?” She widened her eyes, the pizza completely disappeared as she took the bottle out of Hope’s hands. “Tell me everything, and I’ll not only take the day off tomorrow, I’ll pretend I have pneumonia and take the week off. Who is it? Do I know who it is? Tell meeee.”
In that case. If it meant Christine taking a little well-earned rest, then Hope would gladly spill all the details - not that she wouldn’t anyway, of course. She’d been itching to talk about it with someone, and she didn’t think Jane was interested given the current state of her life.
“Uh, let's see - Sif spent the night. Nothing happened,” she added quickly. “But we just...talked. And agreed to go on a date.” Then shit hit the fan with Thor’s storm, and Loki being arrested, and her and Sif weren’t even in the same damn country right now.
Which was a problem, if you were trying to date someone. “I’d been having feelings since...maybe after the new year? But, you know. I just - didn’t do anything about them.” Mostly she’d tried to ignore them, it was simply that plan blew up in her face and she was glad about it, was all.
Sif? Wow. That was not who Christine would have assumed but hey, whatever made Hope happy. “I mean, it makes sense. You’re both two deadly females that I would not want to be caught between in an argument sooo…. Better you than me, love!” She giggled and cocked her head. “All teasing aside, I’m glad. The distance will be hard, I’m sure. Isn’t there a portal somewhere at the Tower though to get to Asgard? Or has that been taken down now…” Without thinking, she pulled out her phone and was about to text Stephen when she remembered she was mad at him.
Nope. Not going to do that.
She glanced at the bottle. How was it half way gone?
“We’re going to need more wine. And I’m writing you a sick note. We need to catch up, stat.”
No texting Stephen, no. Hope wouldn’t allow it - Christine needed a mental health break from that whole mess, otherwise she was going to go batty. “I think after Thor caused a storm, we were effectively cut off from Asgard,” she sighed, going back to her pizza crust. “At least for the time being. We’ll figure it out though.” She really liked Sif, so she was willing to work at it a little. It wasn’t what Hope had anticipated, but hey, things turned out how they turned out, right?