HUMAN/SUPER First Contact 19

“What kind of party is this?” Angela asked.

“Oh, didn’t I mention?” Genesis said, opening the door. “My ex plays in a heavy metal band.”

She stepped inside and a voice yelled, “Gen!”

A dark-haired woman wearing leather pants and studded combat boots came bounding into the foyer of a spacious apartment filled with a similarly-attired crowd. The woman grabbed Genesis by the shoulders and kissed her on both cheeks.

“I wasn’t sure if you were going to show,” she said.

“I wouldn’t dare miss it,” Genesis said, and leaned back. “You look good.”

“Thanks,” the woman said. “It’s been a hell of a year.”

“So I’ve heard,” Genesis said. “You’ll have to tell me all about it before—Oh, excuse me, I’m being rude. This is my friend Angela. Angela, this is Jackie, the one I was telling you about.”

Angela’s eyes widened and she almost looked up before catching herself. Jackie thrust out her hand and Angela shook it.

“It’s, uh, nice to meet you,” Angela said weakly.

“Hey, relax, dude,” Jackie said. “I don’t bite.”

Angela nodded and hugged her elbows.

“She just has a thing about eye contact,” Genesis said. “It’s nothing personal.”

“Oh, okay,” Jackie said. “Come on in then, have a beer.”

She turned and led the way into the living room, where the crowd was thickest.

“Thanks,” Angela said quietly.

“No problem,” Genesis replied.

“So, Angela, how’d you meet Gen?” Jackie asked.

“She fixed my computer,” Angela replied.

Jackie laughed.

“Well, isn’t that a coincidence,” she said. “That’s how I met her, too. We’d just finished recording our first demo and my hard drive crashed. Gen totally saved my ass and we hit it off from there. Between you and me, I think she has a thing for damsels in distress. Ain’t that right, Gen?”

“No idea what you’re talking about, Jack,” Genesis said.

Sure,” Jackie said.