Categories > Cartoons > Daria > Tigresses


by DrT 4 reviews

An epilogue, set in 2010

Category: Daria - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Drama - Characters: Daria - Warnings: [!!] - Published: 2014-04-07 - 1921 words - Complete

Tigresses of Lawndale – 20 – 2010

By Dr T

An epilogue, set in 2010

August, 2010

Daria Quincy sighed, partly in satisfaction and partly in fatigue, and sat down at the desk in her new office. She looked around, her mouth twitching in momentary dissatisfaction. Ashton Pennsylvania lacked many things, but scenery was, on the whole, not one of them. Ashton University of Pennsylvania was set across a wide, tumbling creek from the small borough of the same name, on a series of hills which guaranteed that, unlike parts of the actual town, it could never flood. On the other hand, every winter would be a slippery adventure. Still, there were wooded ridges and mountains surrounding the entire area with plenty of (mostly) clean air as the belching smoke of the foundries and factories in nearby valleys were long gone (the vast majority shut down or converted to less polluting manufacturing, and the rest at least cleaned up).

Daria could see the lovely scenery from the small home she and Jane had purchased, but not from her actual office, located on an inside corridor of the basement of the Language Arts building. Still, the office was slightly larger than most of the other ones in the four story building, and was also on the only corridor in the building with no class rooms on the outer side of the corridor. Granted, there were student rest rooms down the corridor and a women's faculty toilet to one side of her office, but the other side was the electrical maintenance room, and across the hall were the conference room and the faculty lounge. Compared to the other corridors in the building, with three classrooms each, this should be somewhat quieter.

Daria thought about the last ten years, and all the changes to her life since her first summer in this area. Her senior year of high school had been a year of growth and tragedy but at least the three collections in the Bromwell teen angst series had made no noise at Lawndale High, although she had later learned they had slightly impressed Tom's parents. She never found out if Tom knew or cared, and she had rarely thought about him since she had seen him at the Snow Ball in 2000.

Daria had opened up much that first summer at Ashfield in part due to Jane, and even more over her senior year, thanks to Jane, Theo, and John. Except for being with Jane, however, that had ended with Theo’s death, and Jane had not actually seen John since they had run into each other at the mall outside of Lawndale during the Christmas 2002 break. Although she and Jane had kept in touch with Fred and Ted after that summer at Ashfield, none of the four tried to start any romantic relationship in Boston. Instead, Daria and Jane formed a couple which over the ensuing years became an ever deeper friendship/partnership while becoming (most of the time) less physical than it had been during their second summer at Ashfield. Theirs was a true partnership, but not often a very romantic one. Serious romance for both had happened in the early spring of 2004. Daria had indeed tested out of a year of general education classes. By taking some summer classes, she had already finished her B.F.A. in December, 2003, and was in the first year of her M.F.A. program in Creative Writing. Jane had been a junior that spring, having spent each summer painting instead of taking classes. Jane was well-known in Boston's academic art scene, although of course she had made little impact on the larger art life of the city. Still, she was given a one-woman show at one of the more famous galleries for a week that March.

Jane and Daria had literally tripped over a pair of brothers coming in to see that show. George Quincy was a pediatric resident at one of the Boston hospitals, his younger brother Gerald Quincy was a senior in electrical engineering at MIT. George, an amateur sculptor and an outgoing friendly man, started dating Jane that week. The shyer, somewhat geekier Gerald only agreed to dare ask Daria on a double date a few weeks later because of George and Jane's urging.

Both couples fell in love, and they had a double wedding on New Year's Eve, 2005. Over the next three and a half years, George would finish his residency and pursue his medical career, while Jane, who had finished her B.F.A. in the fall of 2004, would finish her M.F.A. in painting in 2009. Daria would earn her M.F.A. in Creative Writing in 2007. She had also gained admittance into the Comparative Literature program at Harvard, pursing that part time until she had earned her M.F.A. at Raft. She had then convinced the program directors to admit her into the PhD program, which she had finished the previous May.

Jane and Daria, to Daria’s extreme annoyance and the amusement of all who knew them, each quickly became pregnant after their marriage, despite many redundant precautions on Daria’s part. Jane gave birth to Melody Joyce just after Christmas 2006, Daria to James Jacob a few minutes after midnight on New Year's Day, 2007. The two couples, and their two infants, continued to make their home in a large house in Boston. On Christmas Eve, 2009, however, when the families were visiting the extended Quincy family in New Hampshire, the brothers were killed by a drunk driver. Daria, with echoes of what had happened to Theo, had taken the loss even harder than Jane had. Jane, who had just finished her M.F.A. two weeks before, took on most of the burden of the two pre-schoolers for the next semester, while she and Daria had healed each other emotionally.

Despite having spent nearly a decade in Boston and just over four years in the same house, that house no longer felt like a home to either woman. It held too many memories. In addition, Jane and Daria had been living together since they moved to Boston. Neither had even internally debated on if they wanted to keep house together – their husbands had quickly accepted and adapted to the fact their beloveds were attached to each other – but both had wondered where the two of them could build a life together with their children as a family.

In the end, chance came to their rescue. Jane decided to take up residence at Ashfield when Daria managed to land a tenure-track position at Ashton. The art colony had been considering expansion for some time. With the money made from selling the Boston house, the pair bought an old farm almost across from the entrance to Ashfield. They then donated most of the land to the art colony, modernizing the house and keeping a few acres. In return, they were considered residents of the colony, and the farm house, once they had it fully modernized (which would take some time), would be kept up by the colony maintenance staff. Jane had a studio in the colony itself, and Daria would be dropping off and picking up Melody and James from pre-school on her way in and out of work.

It had taken her two weeks, but finally Daria's office was set up as she wanted it, just a few weeks before the University started its 'fall term' in late August. Daria swiveled in her chair, and saw the medal-winning painting Jane had done of her ten years before, which her parents had given her as a wedding present. Daria shook her head in wonder at the developments in her life since she had written poetry on that blanket in the grass.

Below the painting was a set of book shelves. Daria had reserved the top shelves for her major work. There weren't a lot, yet, but she felt it was respectable for a professional writer her age. The top shelf held her actual books to date which she admitted to: the three angst books, one slim volume of poetry and three chapbooks, and the three Melody Powers novels which had so far been published (the fourth would be out the following spring), along with her monograph, based on her dissertation. She also had two novels each in three different series, one pure sci-fi, one fantasy, and one mystery. The second shelf had the volumes, journals, and magazines which had printed poems or short stories. It also had seven DVDs, two independent movies she had done the scripts for and one she had contributed to, and amateur films of the four plays she had had produced (although only one had been performed professionally).

If someone looked at that top shelf, they would have noticed that the angst books as well as the sci-fi and fantasy series were by Daria Morgendorffer (as were her film scripts and plays); the poetry, the mysteries, and her dissertation were by Daria Quincy; the Melody Powers books were of course by Melody Powers. Daria currently wrote under many names. She had written new lyrics to most of the Mystic Spiral songs, and to everyone's surprise, Mystic Spiral had quickly become a moderately successful regional band, one which opened, and still opened, rock concerts around the Mid-Atlantic States. Over the years, many of those songs and the ones Daria co-wrote with Trent or with the band as a whole, had hit the top 100 Billboard charts, although with only one exception as covers by more famous bands. Ironically, it was Freakin' Friends, the song Daria had changed the least, which had been the highest rated song by Mystic Spiral itself at number 78 for a short time. Since she had started the process in 2000, she still used her maiden name. Songs she had written the lyrics for had so far won three Grammies, with twelve other nominations, even though the recordings which had earned her the nominations were not by Mystic Spiral.

The writing Daria did not brag about, although it was on both her writing resume and her professional curriculum vitae, were the popular romances she wrote under the name Quinn Morningstar. There were five of those to date, and they had sold embarrassing well. No longer on any of her references were the twelve short romance club novels she had written while in high school and at Raft under the name Jane Street, or the six Gothics she had written for a sister book club under the same name. The soft-core lesbian/bi-sexual romances she wrote under the name Amy Trail, five to date, had never been mentioned in any of her references and never would while she lived. Only Jane and Aunt Amy knew of her connection to them.

D.J. Imaginative Productions had never really existed as any sort of production company. Instead,
Daria and Jane used it more as a tax shelter.

Daria sat down and booted her campus computer. Her life had perhaps see-sawed between extremes more than many peoples’, but she was still under thirty, in good shape physically and emotionally, had a lovely son and god-daughter, and a partner who was currently her lover more than she had ever been before, not to mention a good job. Someday, she or Jane might again fall in love with someone else, but they would always be partners; no doubt there would be many trials ahead.

Although she saw there were waiting e-mails, Daria called up her word processer.

It was time to start her next novel.
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