She Said You Were Amazing Damned Amazing

[10:53] <Yanmei> It was a cool weekend afternoon when a violet colored hatchback pulled up in front of a certain home. The driver was trying very hard not to look like a typical soccer mom, although she couldn't shake the feeling that that was exactly what she had turned into. She wore a lot of leather today - red leather jacket, matching boots, and a black dress beneath that. Also a baseball cap, which was unusual for her.-
[10:54] <Yanmei> Humming a little to herself, she honked her car's horn a few times.
[10:59] <Rosalie> [Rosalie was waiting in her apartment foyer for Yanmei, and as the car showed up she ran out, wearing a cute purple coat over a white shirt and navy blue skirt.-
[10:59] * Rosalie ran over to the door, pulling it open, and slipping into the front seat. "Hi, Yanyan~"
[10:59] <Yanmei> "Hi!" Yanmei grinned back. "How are you feeling?"
[11:02] <Rosalie> "I feel good! A little nervous."
[11:11] <Yanmei> "Nervous?" Yanmei lowered the windows on Rosalie's side as far down as they could go. "You'll be fine! Haven't you been practicing hard?"
[11:16] <Rosalie> "I have! B-but so has everyone else…"
[11:21] <Yanmei> "Hehe. That's true too, I guess." She shifted the car's gears and started off, slowly. "But it's like… you like running, don't you?"
[11:38] <Rosalie> "Yeah, of course! I love it."
[11:40] <Yanmei> "So, like, just think about the fun you're going to have while running your hardest. Competition comes into it too, but only as part of the fun. You know what I mean?"
[11:45] <Rosalie> "So… So if I just try to think about how much fun I'll have, I won't worry about being nervous?"
[11:47] <Yanmei> "It will help. Why don't you give it a try!"
[11:49] <Rosalie> "Uh-huh!" Rosalie nodded firmly. "Um…"
[11:49] <Yanmei> "Yes?"
[11:50] <Rosalie> "Um. Usually I'm not too worried, you know, about… About how I do."
[11:51] <Yanmei> "Oh?" She blinked. "What's so different about today, then?"
[11:56] <Rosalie> "Um… Well." She glanced at Yanmei nervously. "I-I know you're coming to watch, so I really want to show you I can run well…"
[12:04] <Yanmei> "And if you don't do well, how do you think I'd react?"
[12:06] <Rosalie> "U-Um, I mean… I know you won't be upset, but I really want to make you proud…"
[12:10] <Yanmei> "But I already am proud," Yanmei pointed out. "And I know what it's like to be out there. If anything does go wrong, I'll understand. Okay?"
[12:11] * Rosalie reddened a little, giving Yanmei a shy smile. "… Thanks, Yanyan. Hey, do you think we could go out to the shops after? For lunch?"
[12:13] <Yanmei> "Of course! What are you in the mood for? Sandwiches? Ice cream?"
[12:15] * Rosalie giggled. "Noodles!"
[12:17] <Yanmei> "Noodles!" Cheap and easy and filling. "Consider it done~"
[12:26] <Rosalie> [And so they drove, Rosalie chattering about various things. All things considered, however, the race track- which was built into a large athletic park about 10 minutes from St. Louis- was fairly close by car. Before long they'd be pulling up, crowds milling about- runners, parents, teachers and staff.-
[12:26] <Rosalie> "…" Rosalie stared out at the mass of people.
[12:32] * Yanmei glanced at her out of the corner of her eye. "Are you okay?"
[12:37] <Rosalie> "Yeah, yeah." Rosalie gives Yanmei a big smile. "Come on, let's go! I can introduce you to my new teacher."
[12:39] <Yanmei> "That sounds pretty good! I don't think we've met yet. Do you like her?"
[12:44] * Rosalie jumped out of the car, running around to Yanmei's side and yanking the door open. "Uh-huh! Wait til you meet her, you'll like her too!"
[12:46] <Yanmei> "Eager, eager," she teased, but she emerged from the car, and stretched, and shut the door. "Lead the way!"
[12:48] * Rosalie grabbed Yanmei's hand and started tugging her towards a particular clump of people.-
[12:55] <Rosalie> [Most of the people were, of course, little six-year-olds like Rosalie. But in the middle was a tall woman with red hair, chattering to them. As Rosalie approached, she looked over- and smiled. "There you are, Rosalie."-
[12:57] <Rosalie> "Hi, Miss Paquet!" She looked up at Yanmei. "This is Miss Paquet."
[12:59] <Yanmei> "Hello!" Yanmei chirped. "I'm from one of the older classes here. It's good to meet you~"
[13:03] <Rosalie> ["Ah…" Miss Paquet paused, then smiled and offered Yanmei a hand. "Miss Zhang Yanmei, no doubt? Rosalie told me you were coming today."]
[13:09] <Yanmei> "Well, she was pretty excited about it, so… You know, it's great of you to come out and support them too today."
[13:19] <Rosalie> ["Hehe. Well, someone has to organise these misfits." She ruffled the hair of one boy fondly. "Jean, why don't you take Rosalie and Michel over and get their names written down in the register? See where their races are."-
[13:19] <Rosalie> ["Alright, Miss Paquet." Said the boy. "Come on, Rosie, Jean-"-
[13:20] <Rosalie> "See you later, Yanyan!" Said Rosalie as she was led away, waving energetically.-
[13:20] <Rosalie> ["Excitable as always." Said Miss Paquet as she headed over to stand at Yanmei's side like a real adult.]
[13:23] * Yanmei waved at Rosalie departed. "Can't blame her. These events are pretty exciting for the participants. Did you ever join any sports teams when you were younger?"
[13:25] <Rosalie> ["Me? Volleyball and handball." Said Miss Paquet with a smile. "You do anything?"]
[13:27] <Yanmei> "Running. I was in softball for a while, but it only lasted a year or two." Yanmei observed the crowd with a faint smile. "This place has the same type of energy that I felt before racing. Only now, I'm a bit more detached from it?"
[13:28] <Rosalie> ["A bit detached?"]
[13:31] <Yanmei> "Maybe because I'm a spectator. Or maybe because I'm older." Yanmei smiled and shrugged. "But enough about that. Are you enjoying your new position here?"
[13:33] <Rosalie> ["Oh, it's been rewarding. But very challenging."]
[13:36] <Yanmei> "Challenging?"
[13:40] <Rosalie> ["The previous teacher was very well-liked by the children." Said Miss Paquet. "And a lot of them were hurt or otherwise lost family and friends in the attack. Trying to look after them has me doing things no teacher should be expected to do."]
[13:43] <Yanmei> "Oh, yeah. I guess that's to be expected after everything." Yanmei's smile had faded a little. "Things like counseling or personally being a guardian to some of them?"
[13:51] <Rosalie> ["Yeah. I can't be a guardian to all of them, and thankfully the ones without parents have been taken in by family or parents of others." A shake of the head. "But I still go that little extra for them. Take Rosie for example. She probably got off lucky, and that's saying something, because I know she got hurt pretty hard. She's been throwing herself into school life with gusto, but for a very long time she was… Shaken."]
[13:54] <Yanmei> "Hm," Yanmei knew all too well. "Certain fears that wouldn't leave her alone."
[13:58] <Rosalie> ["Right. For a long time she hated being in narrow or tight spaces." She shook her head. "She really admires you."]
[14:04] <Yanmei> "For some reason," she chuckled. "I helped her through that nightmare of an Angel attack, but I'm finding that I can't do much else to help her heal. I can only cheer her on at times like this and take her home after school some days."
[14:07] <Rosalie> ["Heh. That helps, though. Do you know what she told me?"]
[14:07] <Yanmei> "What's that?"
[14:10] <Rosalie> ["She gets pretty depressed because her mother's always working, but she said that when she's with you it doesn't feel so bad, because you look after her."]
[14:16] <Yanmei> "Heh. You know, I was supposed to be teaching her how to get by a little better on her own? She's a quick learner when it comes to cooking, and she's actually pretty good at balancing a small budget. But somehow, I ended up taking care of her, huh?"
[14:24] <Rosalie> [Ms. Paquet smiled. "A little kid like her needs more than to be just taught how to live by themselves. The healthiest thing for them is to have someone to keep an eye out."]
[14:26] <Yanmei> "But if something happens to me, she'll need to stand on her own two feet, right? Or find another way of coping?"
[14:31] <Rosalie> ["That's true. Come on. Why don't we go to the spectator stands?"]
[14:36] <Yanmei> "Sure! Things will probably be starting soon." Yanmei shifted directions, still making conversation. "Did you grow up in Paris, Miss Paquet?"
[14:37] <Rosalie> ["Yes, that's right. I was born in Old Paris." They walked off towards the collapsible stands.]
[14:40] <Yanmei> "Did you get out of school just recently?" She tried her hand at weaving through thr crowds to the bleachers. "This would be a pretty difficult first teaching job…"
[14:42] <Rosalie> ["I've been out of school for three years, actually." Said Ms. Paquet. "I've spent the time since at a different job, so this is my second. It -is- pretty damned difficult though. I still feel like I'm starting out."]
[14:50] <Yanmei> "No kidding. Showing up just after something like that… Well, there's no where to go but up, right?"
[14:53] <Rosalie> [Ms. Paquet grinned. "Right. Luckily, the other teachers have been pretty supportive, but I still feel kind of like a child in comparison."]
[14:58] <Yanmei> "Have you met Mr. Martin before? He's my homeroom teacher. It seems like he has lots of experience with this since… yeah, he's been around ever since the attacks began."
[14:59] <Rosalie> ["Heh, yeah. He's a pretty sweet guy." She threw a furtive look around then leaned towards Yanmei. "If I can tell you a secret?"]
[15:00] <Yanmei> "Hm?" She leaned in a little closer too. "I promise I'll keep quiet about it."
[15:02] <Rosalie> ["He's actually the head of the S2 Agents here. They sort of made me one too when I joined. I don't even know how to use a gun."]
[15:07] * Yanmei blinked. "Th-that's not too surprising? I mean, I knew he was an agent. Are we supposed to be talking about this?"
[15:10] <Rosalie> ["Probably not, but I figured you of all people should know, yeah? Sorry, I'm probably not being a fantastic professional."]
[15:14] <Yanmei> "It's okay, it's okay. Listen. As far as gun use goes, you might want to head to NERV HQ on the weekends? It shouldn't be too hard to get a trainer there. Even so, if they hired you, it must mean that you have certain qualities that they're looking for even if you're inexperienced with combat."-
[15:14] <Yanmei> She was looking at the lady with new appraising eyes now. Maybe she was best at communications? Or lockpicking?
[15:19] <Rosalie> ["Hmmm. I guess you're right. Maybe they want someone who's good at math, huh?" She grinned.]
[15:21] <Yanmei> "Why not?" she grinned back. "It takes all sorts of talents!"
[15:23] <Rosalie> ["I guess it does. Oh!" She tugged on Yanmei's sleeve. "Look. The sixth years first group are lining up."-
[15:24] <Rosalie> [Fifteen children were forming into lines, Rosalie near the centre of the pack. She was looking around nervously for Yanyan!
[15:24] <Rosalie> ]
[15:26] * Yanmei glanced right, then left, and then stood up to wave at the girl, hoping to catch her attention.
[15:26] * Rosalie saw Yanmei, and started waving back enthusiastically!
[15:28] * Yanmei gave her a thumbs up and brilliant smile. "She looks so happy!"
[15:32] <Rosalie> ["Her mother doesn't come to these, huh?"]
[15:34] <Yanmei> "She has to work. A lot." Yanmei started to sink back down again. "She works for NERV too, you know."
[15:34] <Rosalie> ["Yeah, I know. A doctor, right?"]
[15:35] <Yanmei> "Yeah. It's rough on her too. She probably wants to come, right?"
[15:38] <Rosalie> ["I think so. Dr. Paget is probably pretty sad she has to miss things like this…"]
[15:40] <Yanmei> "But her work is important too. So it can't be helped." For a moment, she almost looked gloomy, but she shook it off. "Who do you think will win?"
[15:43] <Rosalie> ["Rosalie is pretty fast. But there's a boy down there she's a rival with. Pierre. They're always bickering."]
[15:47] <Yanmei> "Heh heh, isn't that cute?" She paused. "Not that they'll like each other and get together or anything. That's just crazy."
[15:47] <Rosalie> ["Hahaha. Stranger things have happened? It's pretty cute nevertheless. He's the one with the blonde hair."]
[15:48] <Yanmei> "Oh, I think I see him. So that's probably the person she'll be trying the hardest to beat."
[15:49] <Rosalie> ["Yeah. I think she wants to win, but even more she wants to beat Pierre."]
[15:53] <Yanmei> "Well, then," Yamei settled back to watch. "Let's see how she does!"
[15:56] <Rosalie> The race coordinator stepped up to the track, his starting pistol out. The participants- including Rosalie- took up the ready stance.-
[15:56] <Rosalie> ["Three- two- one-" Crack!-
[15:57] * Rosalie was -off-, and although she wasn't directly out in front at the moment she was definitely fighting for it!
[16:00] <Yanmei> "Yay, go!" Yanmei cheered! "You can do it, Rosie!"
[16:05] <Rosalie> [The girl was pushing as hard as she could, and she started to break into first place… Only to be challenged by a fiercely determined blonde boy…!]
[16:08] * Yanmei almost frowned at that, but she kept up the cheering, hoping she would hear it.
[16:16] * Rosalie was glaring, running harder now. She was almost at the finishing line and was just pass Pierre- when she stumbled…!
[16:18] <Yanmei> A sharp gasp! No!
[16:20] * Rosalie made awkward, wobbly steps as she hurdled towards the finish line- and made it! Just by the briefest of seconds she'd surpassed Pierre- and celebrated by tripping and smacking into the ground face first.
[16:23] * Yanmei let off one last cheer before… edging forward a bit, concerned. It was just a little tumble, right? Though it looked like it hurt…
[16:25] * Rosalie was still for a moment before lifting her head, shaking the dirt out of it. She was looking around for Yanyan!
[16:26] * Yanmei gave another wave from a distance, and then hurried down from the stands, giving the teacher one last parting smile and nod.
[16:27] * Rosalie was sitting up now, an attendant walking over to see if she was ok, but she waved them away. "Did you see that, Yanyan?!"
[16:29] <Yanmei> "Of course I did!" She swooped her into a half-hug, half-hair-ruffle. "You were amazing! Damned amazing!"
[16:31] <Rosalie> "Eeeee~! <3" Rosalie as blushing and giggling as she clung to Yanmei. "And I beat Jerkface Pierre too!"
[16:34] <Yanmei> "And how! I'm so proud of you!"
[16:44] <Rosalie> "Hehehehe." She put her arms around Yanmei's neck and pulled herself up. "I fell at the end… I was kinda careless…"
[16:45] <Yanmei> "Doesn't matter!" Yanmei said cheerfully. "Did you have fun?"
[16:46] <Rosalie> "Yeah! Wow!" She grinned, bouncing up and down. "Did you see how I started? I didn't waste my sprint~"
[16:50] <Yanmei> "Pro work," she agreed. "I couldn't have done it better myself!"
[16:52] * Rosalie was glowing with pride. "You'll have to run with me one day when you get better~"
[16:53] <Yanmei> Taken aback for a split second… until she remembered that she -could- get better. "That'll be fun! You'll go easy on me, won't you~?"
[16:53] <Yanmei> Still grinning, she made for the sidelines with Rosalie.

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