Well, I tried.
I wanted to call up Chuck and thank him for all his help with the Cybermancer stuff, but it looks like he’s too busy to be answering his phone, as usual. Oh well. I’m sure as sunshine he’ll call back eventually with some limited-time offer for an incomplete collection of 60s Batman comics. He mailed me back my game already, at the very least.
The game known only as Genesis Crush.
I look around at my living room, filled with boxes and clutter and more jam-packed with junk than I could ever imagine.
Kobi got to take some of his stuff with him after police cleared it and take it with him to his temporary residence, my apartment.
Kobi’s aunt is going to be picking him up in a couple weeks when she is able to take the time off work to come to Atlanta up from Tallahassee. Yes, Tallahassee keeps returning to my life like some sort of ironic demon taunting me for my past self’s stupid ideas. I know, I hate Past Morgan just as much as you.
So for the meantime… I am his legal guardian. That means being one step closer to parenthood, and I shudder to think about that idea. But hey, at least Karina’s here to be my– uh, my companion in… raising this child but not actually doing that because we’re not actually parents and will never be because we will never have a reason to be.
We’re supposed to be consolidating these boxes everywhere into several fewer so that they will actually fit in his aunt’s car when she eventually gets here, but I have no idea how we’re going to do that.
I sift through this box of junk, and it really is junk, like assorted VHS tapes mixed in with some weird PC garbage Chuck would sell. Maybe Kobi is too attached to his father to let a lot of his stuff go and be claimed as evidence by the police?
He seems fairly okay with this whole situation, though, even if his father is being sentenced to prison as we speak. I sometimes worry about how little he’s been crying or expressing much grief over losing his father in such a dramatic way.
As for the stuff… I’m just going to keep this all together for now and hope Kobi decides to throw some of it out as junk.
I open another box, and–
It’s ten copies of Genesis Crush among a cluttered stack of books and a Nintendo Playstation controller.
Sneaky little bastard.
After all this time, fighting Moonslash and working with Chuck, Karina and I were never able to actually play Genesis Crush. But now that it’s all over… we can start! It’s the most excited I’ve been in ages.
Over by a stack of boxes filled solely with movies, Karina and Kobi are chatting it away.
“Yes! I am such a big fan of Singin’ in the Rain,” Karina says. “The songs and the characters and the colors are all so amazing. It’s really inspired me in my life.”
“It’s very entertaining,” Kobi says. “I like musicals.”
“Me too. The glitz and the glamor and the dancing around really big sets, and… it’s so much fun!” Karina’s eyes start glittering. I swear.
They’re hitting it off well, these two. TOO well. It was obvious to me that they’d be friendly based on their shared interest in movies, but Karina is treating him like he’s a baby angel who fell from heaven before getting its wings, like she has an all-new purpose in life.
“And do you like this one?” He pulls up another movie called Space Prankster. “It’s a musical too, the very last one produced in Hollywood before the war.”
“Uhh…” Karina puts her hand behind her neck. “It’s… got some songs about space, yeah.”
“But isn’t it so good?”
Kobi’s smile turns into a deep frown. “But.. it’s got Greg Holder and Uriel Lopez, and Erik Scheele did the music…”
“It’s… well, not everyone can like everything, you know! Everyone’s different, and that’s what makes movie watching so great.” She does a cheery little gesture like she said something truly inspirational.
“But… everyone should like Space Prankster…”
“You know… You know what? Maybe I just misjudged it on a first watch. Put it in and we’ll give it another try!”
Kobi’s eyes light up.
“But Karina… we were going to play Genesis–” She elbows me in the stomach.
This… this isn’t fair. All this time, and thought we were finally going to play this game, the only thing I’ve been looking forward to since the friggin’ beginning of May. Yeah yeah cheering up some kid who just went through traumatic events, whatever, but when do I get to fight sentient samurai crocodiles and level up my special moves???
I have to go through the boxes Kobi brought and dig out a VHS tape player since I don’t even own one of those anymore. We may have stagnated in technology over the past few years here in Atlanta, but we aren’t savages. We DO use digital media for all our movie-watching needs, like cartridges and laserdiscs.
We pop in Space Prankster (and rewind the tape back to the beginning), and I take the piles of boxes off the couch so we three can sit down and watch this movie. I somehow suspected we weren’t going to get much work done today.
I’m pretty satisfied with the way this all turned out; Moonslash is in jail, Kobi is happy, I still possess my life, and I still own Genesis Crush. (Don’t worry, we’ll play it in the next chapter and finally figure out if it’s the best game of all time.)
I get to sit with Karina on a fun Saturday evening and spend some quality friendship-only time with her, our not-child Kobi wedged in between us. That’s a pretty good end result.
My God this movie is bad, though.