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23. Sarah and Linda

22. Kyla Recovers

21. Sarah in the Band Room

20. Kyla in the Band Room

19. Tiffany Meets Them at School

18. The Next Morning

17. Confrontation Avoided

16. Linda Eavesdrops

15. Sarah Fixes Jon's Room

14. Tiffany Confronts Kyla

13. Tiffany's Thoughts

12. Melissa Wanders

11. Aftermaths

10. Leaving the Gym

9. Jon and the Cheerleaders Face

8. In the Gym

7. Jon's Day

6. Karyn "helps" Jon

5. Bumping Into Sarah in the Hall

4. First Period Honors English

Sarah and Linda

avatar on 2024-03-18 01:37:44

932 hits, 124 views, 4 upvotes.

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With her house now empty, Linda Gibson twisted her hair into a messy bun, straightened the purple sleeves of her pullover, and set her laptop on the living room coffee table so that she could log in to her remote work applications. A quick check-in with her supervisor on Teams. A quick glance at Outlook to make sure there weren't any urgent emails. A quick trip to the kitchen to make herself a cup of tea.

Remote work does have its perks.

Linda peered out the kitchen window and into the front yard as her thoughts drifted to the spreadsheet that awaited her, and as Earl Grey aromas wafted over her nostrils. If she was thinking about work, was that not the same as working?

Linda usually allowed herself a good ten minutes every morning with her cup of tea. She had to log in and make sure there wasn't anything urgent to address first, but giving herself this time in the morning allowed her to be more productive for the rest of the day. And she was just lifting her mug to her lips for the last sip, when the sound of tires squealing brought her attention away from her work.

A white Miata going too fast for a residential area stopped short in front of Linda's driveway. It reversed with a lurch. Then it turned and parked behind Linda's own Nissan Leaf.

That was Sarah's car, wasn't it? But the woman driving it didn't look like the Sarah that had left the house some twenty minutes earlier. In fact, as Linda glanced down at herself and then back up, that woman was wearing the exact same sweater that Linda wore. Her hair was in the exact same messy bun.

The woman frantically exited the convertible, and Linda could now see that it was indeed Sarah, but something had gone very wrong. A lump began forming like a stone in her gut. Was this somehow Linda's doing? Her attempt to help the girl somehow backfiring?

Linda rushed to the front door, matching Sarah's gait exactly, and opened it just as Sarah was raising her hand to knock.

Linda felt the instinct to gasp, but the air rushed out of her lungs instead of into them. The stream of air kept sucking out of her and she couldn't breathe in, and she couldn't close her mouth. Her chest burned with the vacuum that was forming. She started to feel dizzy as her vision darkened.

"Oh my god, Linda, are you alright?"

Sarah's words, like a light switch, pulled everything back into place. Linda's lungs were full of air, she was standing straight, she could see perfectly fine. "I guess I just wasn't expecting you," she smiled, all pain forgotten.

"What do you mean?" Sarah asked, walking past Linda and making her way to the living room, "I've been coming over for work ever since the office went remote."

Something felt wrong about that, but Linda wasn't quite placing it. Besides, her bigger concern was that Sarah had somehow transformed into practically Linda's double.

Well, not completely her double, Linda thought to herself as she, too, returned to the living room. Sarah's dark hair was twisted into a messy bun, while Linda's, she brushed a stray blonde lock behind her ear, was in a braid. So they weren't the same. And she supposed it wasn't so unusual that they'd both worn jeans and a pullover today. But something still nagged at the back of Linda's mind as Sarah sat down at the coffee table and opened one of the two laptops that sat there.

Linda sat down next to her and pulled up the spreadsheet that would take up the majority of her day. Sarah sighed as she opened up her own spreadsheet. "At least this way we can suffer together," she said.

Remote work does have its perks.

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