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Cruising and Perusing
Topic Started: Jun 4 2015, 07:17 PM (848 Views)
Deamon
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((Kimiko Kao continued from Hypotenuse Murder Mystery Case))

Kimiko had been looking through Larson's large collection of Marvel comics, specifically their X-Men books. She'd always had an attraction to the X-Men. It hadn't been long after she had first arrived in America that she'd found a comic in a book store. At the time she enjoyed the X-Men because they were outsiders and she felt like one. It was immature and childish true but it planted the seed for a lifelong love of comics in her heart. She had been reading them ever since even when the storylines or events were frankly terrible and the writing quality was sub-par. But she soldiered on, knowing that eventually a good writer would take over and right the course. A good writer could make the most of the medium and push it to its limits to tell interesting and compelling stories that also allowed commentary on things that transcended people in bright and flash costumes punching each other in the face. That was where her true enjoyment of comic books came from now that she was more mature. It was why she was thumbing through a trade paperback of Grant Morrison's All-New X-Men run. One of the best X-Men series ever written, she was certain she was going to buy the trade she held but she was just taking a moment to get a preview of what she was actually going to get for her money. It seemed like a good purchase.

She looked over her shoulder when she heard a loud question asked. As it turned out it wasn't actually directed at her; although it easily could have been considering just how loudly the boy was speaking. Kimiko recognized Samuel; he was in her grade and was very noticeable. Thanks to his large height and frame. The boy who had actually asked the question Kimiko had a vague recollection of too, his name was Henry and he was in the grade below, he was mainly notable for wearing eyeshadow. Something that had always caught Kimiko's eye but aside from that and things some people had told her; which hadn't always been polite or complimentary she knew nothing about him.

As things were though neither seemed to have realized she was present. This was something that she was actually OK with as she preferred to be left alone as she browsed through comics. She just found it more peaceful when she was left alone to absorb what she was looking at. It also made it easier for her to judge whether or not she would like a specific book as she could take her time to be more discerning. With that in mind she set the New X-Men trade down on the tops of the other books on the shelf and continued to look at the selection laid out before her. Seeing if there was anything else she wanted to purchase before buying the trade and heading home.
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They were talking to each other. Kimiko was fine with that, she just wanted to be left alone to browse and buy. Kimiko hated to embody the moody mute stereotype but she really didn't like being disturbed while she was reading. She made every effort to be social normally (unless she was in a bad mood that day) but reading comics was her personal time, and she valued the freedom of being able to set time aside where wasn't going to be disturbed and could just relax. Sure maybe she had to expect it since she was in a public place but she hoped she'd be left alone.

That was why when she heard her name called she had to stop herself from visibly reacting. She didn't want to be rude. Instead she took a second to compose herself, taking a moment to put the other X-Men book she'd been looking at back in its proper place, then turned with a smile and a small wave. She slowly walked over, nodding in answer to Henry's question. Both of the boys had a lot of height on her. That was probably what she got for being both Asian and gymnast. Not like being a gymnast actually had any impact on her height but it was another two stereotypes she embodied. She really hated stereotypes.

It wasn't surprising Henry didn't know that she liked comics, it wasn't a secret at all but he was in the grade below so Kimiko could have counted the interactions between the two of them on one hand. She gave Samuel a smile and nod once she reached them, it was only polite. Tilting her head to one side she opened one of her arms, an invitation for the two boys to continue.
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They went back to their conversation which suited Kimiko just fine. They were talking about something related to Game of Thrones. She knew there were books of it but hadn't realised there were graphic novels. Not that it changed her interest in the material any. She watched the show but she was obsessed with it like some people seemed to be. Her family watched it when it was on but that was about as far as it went plus it gave her something to talk about the next day at school.

From everything she had gathered of Henry he was a walking goth stereotype. He had the clothes, the love of horror and the annoying attitude that the darker a piece of fiction was the better it was. Kimiko had always disagreed with that, when Kyle and Yost had taken over X-Force they went so dark with the material it managed to loop back around and become ludicrous. It had always annoyed her because it undermined a lot of the work they had done on their New X-Men run, where deaths happened but they were rare enough that they had an impact. The Purifier attack on the school notwithstanding. But that was a different situation, one story arc of intensity compared to X-Force's continuing intense bloodshed with no signs of slowing down.

Henry snapped her out of her thoughts when he addressed her directly. His sudden questioning left her to awkwardly fumble for her phone in her pocket. She held up her left hand with her index finger up. The universal signal for "one moment" as she withdrew her phone and started to type away. Horror or supernatural comics. They weren't the most popular market for comic books by any means. The domination of superhero comics made by Marvel and DC was pretty much universal and complete. That wasn't to say horror or supernatural comics didn't exist at all, they were just a niche market and therefore harder to find. Kimiko only knew of a few in passing, single issues she had either picked up to see what they were like or names she had seen when browsing online for release dates and previews. When she was done she held the phone up for Henry to see.

Hellraiser
Coffin Hill
Reanimator - based off the movie
The Walking Dead - show is based off it
There's also some stuff about Batman fighting Dracula but I can't remember the name


As for the second question, why would you come to a comics shop to look for normal books? Kimiko was fairly sure Kingman had a book store. She shook her head. There were no normal books in Larson's. It was a comic shop. It sold comics, tabletop stuff and games. Normal books were sold elsewhere.
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Kimiko looked over at Samuel. He was being a little too condescending but she could understand why. It had been a fairly stupid question to ask. Although treating Henry like he was a thirteen year-old wasn't the right way to go about answering. Kimiko had heard of the book Henry was looking for although she had no interest in it at all. As a result the title was about the only thing she did know besides some things she had heard said about it. Not that she could remember those small details anymore. She hadn't been focused on them. As a result she wasn't sure she could be any help to Henry. So she answered him with a non-committal hand-wobble. The hand-wobble always served her well when it came to showing she was unsure about something, sometimes she threw in a small shrug as well to make it extra obvious.

Body language was something Kimiko was a master of or that was what she liked to think. She had never actually asked anyone to confirm her belief at all but she assumed the fact she managed to make it through day-to-day life without relying on technology to explain things for her proved her point. She did have to make frequent use of her phone to type things out for her but she flat-out refused to use one of those machines that vibrated her vocal cords. She had been asked if she wanted one once in Taiwan and had said no and asked again when she'd made one of her first visits to a specialist in America. It had never been brought up again thanks to the aggressiveness of her initial refusal.

She tilted her head when Henry asked about "senior stuff". She had no idea what he meant. Seniors didn't really do anything juniors didn't, apart from stuff to do with college she guessed. Yeah, that was something she had to think about more. Then Henry asked what they planned to do when they graduated. Kimiko couldn't speak for Samuel there but she still looked up at him before looking back at Henry and shrugging...while typing on her phone.

College, international politics, do gymnastics. Hopefully Olympics.

She held it up so the others could see. She didn't know if Samuel knew of her dream of doing gymnastics at the Olympics but if he didn't he did now. It had been her dream since childhood, ever since she had been old enough to understand what the Olympics were. All the hours upon hours of practice were for that one goal. She just had to get into the right college and then go off to the Olympic trials. She was sure she would be able to make it.
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Kimiko didn't have a response to Henry's comment about being able to take part in the Olympics. She didn't get why she would have cared since it was such a strange hypothetical scenario. But if she had to have an opinion she thought it was better that women also got the compete. Then he kept talking, and talking, and talking some more. He only stopped when he saw a graphic novel he liked the look of.

At that point he seemed to forget that Kimiko and Samuel both existed and was transfixed by the graphic novel he had picked up and was reading. Kimiko could only look at Samuel and shrug. Henry seemed to be friendly enough but as far as social interaction went he seemingly didn't quite get it, or didn't care. Kimiko couldn't really tell.

Instead she took the opportunity the pause in the conversation offered to return to the two graphic novels she had been looking at. She held them up to Samuel and pointed to the counter the make it clear she was going to pay for them. That way he wouldn't think she was just leaving him high and dry.
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After paying for her graphic novels Kimiko, turned to look at the other two boys. Henry was still wrapped up in the graphic novel he had found so Kimiko while Samuel was still by the shelves so she made the assumption that the conversation was over. Waving goodbye to Samuel Kimiko headed out of Larson's. She was planning on some relaxing reading when she got home.

((Kimiko Kao continued in I Hate Mustard))
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