Description: Nena Memory Archive 106: Today, I went back to school, where I confronted Rafferty for libel. Meanwhile, Eden and Storm the cat participated in our discussion, and Rafferty's chemistry textbook had an adventure.
There's a big buzz about Pacific High these days, and it's all about one student in particular.
Nena Washington, the ordinary teenage girl, has been revealed, like a Transformer, to be more than meets the eye. It's almost a welcome relief from the fearful atmosphere that had only recently held the school in its grip following the invasion of darkstalkers. Now, it's a different sort of scintillating paranoia - could the kid that sits next to you in math class be a robot?
For two particular female students - Zanna and Becky, a green-haired cheerleading hipster and a blonde cheerleader with nice hips respectively, that question is not paranoia, but now, reality. The two of them conspire in the courtyard between school periods, leaning against one of the brick walls and each having a red lollipop.
(The lollipops were distributed amongst the students at the beginning of first period as a morale-boosting scheme after the traumatic events of Ristar 2021 R1 - Bulleta vs Nena. Presumably, this will save many students months of therapy.)
"God, and did you see when her leg exploded from that land mine? It was like Afghanistan or something! I thought Japan was about Hello Kitty and Pokemon!" the blonde cheerleader says in a stage whisper to the green-haired girl in headphones before sucking furiously on her lollipop.
"Yeah but it's also like, Hellsing and Bubblegum Crisis," Zanna says before licking the outside of her sucker.
"I think that other chick was more Black Lagoon. Nena, though? She's such a freak! Oh, hey, Nena."
The blonde quickly stuffs her lollipop back in her mouth and looks innocent as the brunette not-so-ordinary schoolgirl approaches across the courtyard, her books in her arms.
There's an aura of fear around Nena, like a tabletop roleplaying dragon. It parts the student body around her like a bubble moving through water. Normally, being so starkly different would make someone a prime target for bullying - but the students at Pacific are clever enough not to try and bully a girl who's survived being shot fifty-two times only to incapacitate her shooter.
Nena, on the other hand, seems oblivious to this aura.
"Becky. Zanna. Hello," Nena greets the two fellow cheerleaders whom her aura has pinned against the brick wall as she comes to stand next to them. "How are you today? To clarify, I am using the word 'you' in the plural context."
"Oh, you know. Just standing here, talking about boys!" Becky claims, her voice slightly shaky as she looks Nena up and down. She seems to be breaking into a cold sweat as she realises that the girl's leg, wrist and body, despite having been exploded, exploded, and riddled with bullets respectively, show no signs of trauma.
"Yep. Talking about boys. Sex with boys," Zanna confirms Becky's lie, looking equally fearful.
Nena's lips purse at the response, causing both the other cheerleaders to press back against the wall and flinch.
"I must speak to Rafferty before he disseminates further baseless libel," Nena says coolly before turning around to scan the courtyard with her green optical receptors.
Zanna and Becky look at each other before quietly edging away in opposite directions behind Nena, keeping their backs pressed to the wall.
'OMG, I totally had a crush on you before, but now it's over! What a weirdo :('
'I don't blame you. I'd fuck a robot myself, if it looked like her.'
'LOL, is she a sexbot? That's kinda hot. Not that I'd use one.'
'This is a joke right? Has to be :D'
'Is this a fashion campaign or something? I'm totally down for robot chic.'
Just a tiny selection of comments left on Rafferty Lawrence Stewart's most recent Instagram post. The actual number ran into the thousands and he'd given up reading them after they edged in to triple figures.
Waking up on Sunday, after a boozy movie night, he'd momentarily regretted his decision to make such a provocative post, which swiftly shifted to panic, as he pondered what his modeling agency would think of the stunt. Thankfully for the blond boy, they were delighted with all the attention he was recieving. No publicity is bad publicity, right? Although Rafferty isn't convinced that is always true. There are some things you definitely don't want the world to know about.
Compared to some of those though, his actions were pretty tame and it seemed a lot of people thought he was joking anyway. Besides, it wasn't even true. He'd just been trying to get his numerous followers to stop speculating about the rumours. This hasn't really worked out.
According to his agent, Masako Mori, some teens have been spotted wearing t-shirts with pictures of a cartoon version of Rafferty on, hugging a robot. A scarlet red loveheart was depicted above their heads and the words 'Robot Love' were underneath the image in the same colour lettering. Miss Mori had quickly tracked down the makers of the garments and demanded a cut for both her agency and the young model. It was a win win all around really.
It didn't make things any easier at school, though./ Rafferty has already suffered through endless taunts from his classmates today and it isn't even lunchtime yet. He has a feeling he'll be skipping the cafeteria when it's time to eat.
For now, he's lying low in the school courtyard. Selecting one of the quieter areas, he's hiding behind a textbook on Chemical Bonding. He's dressed in the standard, yet versatile uniform of the school. A blue linen and silk blazer, white shirt and pants and red white and blue sneakers combine to create the patriotic colour scheme for the young American.
As he hears the familiar voice of his girlfriend, he peers out from behind the book and gives her a hesitant wave. He hasn't spoken to Nena since he made the suggestion they could be fucking and he isn't quite sure how she'll react. He won't be going around to her house to see her 'Uncle' Simon anytime soon, that's for sure.
Meanwhile, Eden who shouldn't even care at all was still caring about it. Anytime she would hear a bad comment about Nena or Rafferty, she would look at the culprit and punch her left hand with her right. She didn't need any signs, she was clear enough. At least in her head.
Otherwise, she didn't bring much attention to herself. Well not more than usual at least. She was still odd, and well crazy, to be polite. She just had a big breakfast/lunch... isn't that what they call brunch? kind of thing, so she had a full belly as she walked aroudn the school. Storm was happily walking around, a fish in his mouth, like a first prize, from winning a competition.
She ends up in the schoolyard herself, and sees two familiar faces. She waves at them and looks happy to see them. Storm tries to greet them, but with a fish in his mouth, it only came out as grunts really.
She continues to come closer to them, looking around a moment, to make sure there was no 'threats' around about that whole thing that happened, as Storm moves to sit close to Rafferty, the smell of fish would come soon enough to his Nostrils.
Soon after Eden comes closer as well, but does not sit, instead trying to see what Rafferty is reading.
Nena doesn't give another glance or word to the cheerleaders skulking away along the wall behind her as she zeroes in on her boyfriend and starts to approach at a trot. The displacing aura persists, students stepping aside as she makes her way across the courtyard. tommy, the six-foot-five red-haired football player, turns around to see her approaching and quickly steps aside.
"Oh, s-sorry, Nena!" the normally belligerent tough-guy stammers apologetically as he lets her pass.
"It is not your apology that I require," Nena informs him casually as she continues past, walking right up to where Rafferty is sitting and holding his Chemical Bonding textbook.
"Rafferty. Hello. Please desist in pretending to read your Chemistry textbook at your earliest convenience. We must discuss your recent online conduct imminently."
While her tone is as dry and her posture as formal-casual as ever, there's definitely something about the way that she approaches her boyfriend that implies a certain displeasure of indiscernible depth.
She turns her head after a moment, spotting Eden.
"Eden, hello. Storm, hello."
Rafferty tries to force a smile for Edenlith and Storm, when they join him, but the strong smell of fish is causing his nose to crinkle. Regardless of this, he finds himself leaning closer to the twosome, as Nena heads their way. When the diminutive brunette issues her command, he silently passes the textbook to Eden, revealing his blue eyes to be filled with terror.
"Oh hey, babe" he greets her. There's a definite tremble in his usually silky smooth California tone.
"Yeah, yeah. I've been wanting to talk to you about that too. Come and sit down and we can work things out."
Despite the faux enthusiasm on display, the expression on his face suggests he is anything but enthused by the prospect.
Eden doesn't seem to be bothered by Nena at all. At worse, she's a bit more enthusiastic. Storm on the other hand, is a bit nervous. Not because he doesn't consider her a friend anymore. Rather, it's because to him, she was a big weapon of mass destruction. He manages to keep his fish in his mouth however, and doesn't even move away from his position. Although perhaps he should to let the couple talk>
On the other hand, Eden gets a book. She looks at it, it was Chemistry. She looks at it, with her eyes saying. 'What the fuck am I suppose to do with that?' She looks around a moment, and ponders something. Storm shakes his head and drops the fist a moment. "No, don't throw it in the ocean. You're going to give him gray hair. He's going to have enough of them with how he looks right now. Hi Nena!, Rafferty!" He also says to the couple before getting his fish back.
After hearing Storm, Eden shrugs to herself and settles for putting the book on the ground and sit on it. It is not a way for her to say this book is ass... probably not anyway.
She still doesn't make a sign, as it looks like the two wish to talk, yet she's not nice enough to give them privacy at the moment.
One of the aspects of Nena being a robot that Rafferty might consider advantageous is the fact that she is far less easy to offend than virtually any human being that the boy might have otherwise chosen as a partner. On the other hand, her rationalism also makes her practically immune to sweet talking. To cap it all off, it's also nearly impossible to tell which situation is the current state of play.
"I would prefer to remain standing, thereby minimizing the stress on the recently-replaced organic tissues on my right leg," she says calmly. "And if you are using euphemistic language, then please be informed that I do not intend to 'work things out' with you at this juncture and location. Be informed, also, that I would prefer that, if you wish for sexual activities between us to be a matter of discussion in the public forum, said activities should be announced after, rather than prior to, said sexual activities have taken place."
There's the faintest of quirks in Nena's lips. She isn't one to frown, virtually ever, but Rafferty has earned himself this momentous occasion.
"I was confronted by Simon, my uncle, who was deeply distressed both by your announcement and by the discussion that he felt obliged to engage me in following it."
She turns her head to Eden. "Thank you for keeping Rafferty's book safe, Eden."
At the mention of grey hair, Rafferty's hand shoots up to his lustrous platinum blonde tresses. Tugging on a forelock, he attempts to look up at it, seeking out any telltale signs of ageing. His broad shoulders relax, as he decides that for now, there is nothing to be concerned about.
At least in regards to hair that is! The matter of Nena's displeasure is something else.
It is true that one of the many things Rafferty finds attractive about his romance with the robot, is her calm demeanor and unlikeliness to have emotional outbursts. Before now, he was also partial to her matter of fact tone and rational thought patterns, but he's less of a fan now they are being used against him!
His smooth, pale complexion blushes pink, as she chides him for his behaviour.
"The thing is, if we'd actually been doing it, I wouldn't have broadcast it online" he protests. "That would have been private between us."
A pitiful sigh escapes him and he looks up her, fluttering his long, dark lashes.
"I'm sorry about Simon. I'm guessing he doesn't want you to be with me anymore?" He actually seems genuinely sad that this may be the case.
Storm is devouring his fish. That's about the only sound that comes from the dual. Eden doesn't speak usually, and it doesn't change today. Perhaps she's simply a mute.
Eden listens to what Nena has to say. She's noisy, but in a way for the right reason. If anyone would ask her, she would want them to stay together. Though if someone asked her why, she wouldn't say.
When Nena thanks her, she gives a big smile. Finally someone who understood what she actually was trying to do. She gives two thumbs to Nena, and rubs her butt over the book for good measure. At least she still have her skirt, and presumably underwears too, so her butt never actually comes in direct contact with it.
When Rafferty checks his hair, presumably for any gray in them, she can't help but giggle silently at the show, and she finally makes her first sign with them today. "Hair are not gray, heart is gray like cloud. Rafferty is worried." So now apparently we have Eden the psychiatrist. Storm may have said something to her, about how she shouldn't get in the middle of it, but his fish was simply too delicious right now.
Rafferty's attempt to explain himself does not appear to placate Nena.
It doesn't appear to make her any angrier, either.
Actually, it doesn't seem to evoke much of an emotional response at all, other than to cause her to pause for several moments.
"I can find no logical reasoning in your statement of intent," Nena finally replies. "Publically insinuating that we are engaged in a sexual relationship when we are not does not serve a useful purpose. It is misleading, and warps the social environment in a way that I do not find conducive to normalized social interaction. Whether the nature of our relationship is private or public, it should not be based on fiction."
For all she has to say on the subject, Nena holds her nerve immaculately as ever, still clutching her own textbooks tight against herself.
"I do not like it."
Another Nena rarity - a subjective, qualitative statement of opinion.
"Simon is not the final regulatory body regarding my actions. He has, however, conveyed to me that your behaviour is that of a typical teenage male, and that I should speak to you frankly regarding my feelings. Therefore, I am speaking to you frankly regarding my feelings."
Briefly distracted by Eden marking her territory on his chemistry book, Rafferty stares at her for a moment, confusion clouding his fabulous features.
Then his eyes are back on Nena. She may not be showing much emotion, but it's obvious the male model is feeling rattled. He holds his hands up, in a gesture that suggests surrender and seems to squirm in his seat.
"I just wanted to shut them up. People were accusing me of it anyway, so I was being defiant" he shrugs.
"Obviously it didn't work, but I did make some money from some t-shirts someone made! I could take you out to dinner with the profits if you like" he suggests, seeming heartened by the idea.
"As for Simon, maybe I can get him some more of that vintage champagne, since he never got to drink the last bottle."
Eden doesn't say much while the two are talking. But she listens. Storm finishes his fish. "If I may say something. You also lied Nena, to Rafferty with your 'I am a ordinary teenage girl.' Which for all intend and purpose on the grander scheme of things, may have been better. It may have been better if Rafferty would have been told as soon, or soon after the relationship started. But then again I am just a cat... Meow." Of course Storm was assuming a lot.
Eden looks at Storm a moment, then feels a confused Rafferty looking at her. She simply grins. at him. It looked like she loved them, liked them, did not respect them and hated them too all rolled into one, even her eyes would be difficult to read.They seem crazier ever since that fight with the ghost, but she's trying to hold it together.
While that goes on, Storm goes behind Eden, as if he decided he would be safer behind her, if Nena gets mad for what he said. He couldn't possibly be afraid of Rafferty, could he?
Nena tilts her head slightly to one side. It's a little tic that she seems to have been programmed with - or perhaps one that her artificial intelligence came up with on its own.
"I do not understand how acknowledging their libel as truth constitutes an act of defiance," she says flatly. "However, I am pleased that you were able to profit financially from your mistruths. I do not believe that I nor Simon will consider material restitution necessary, should you provide reassurance that this behaviour will be discontinued."
Nena turns to Storm in turn, straightening her head.
"It is true that I have uttered the phrase 'ordinary teenage girl' in reference to myself one hundred and eleven times in that past. However, I was not being knowingly or willfully deceptive in my declaration; I was operating on falsified information provided to me by my uncle, Simon."
She turns her head toward Rafferty.
"I apologize if you feel that I have misled you in any way, Rafferty."
Rafferty seems shocked by Storm's words. He listens intently to the white cat, as if he's the source of all wisdom. When the speech is over, he flashes the feline a grateful smile, appreciating the male solidarity. Eden gets a more cautious grin, as he tries to read her expression. Perhaps he senses some of her struggle, but he's too wrapped up in his own drama to vocalise this.
"Well, I didn't technically say it was true" he protests to Nena.
"I said so what if it is. Either way, neither you or Simon has to worry. I won't be doing anything like that again. Don't worry about being misleading either. I mean, you saw how freaked out I was, when I realised what you were, but I've had time to get my head around it now. I understand that you were only saying what you believed to be true."
Storm thinks for a moment, hidden behind Eden, beside a cute cat eye peeking out, watching intently. When Nena addresses him, he backs up a little bit more, but no hand came toward him. "Well then, your Uncle has some responsability too. Mistakes were made. He also nods his head toward Rafferty as well. "I am not throwing blame on anyone, not my place. I just want to let everyone see it from a different point of view. Not everyone is wrong, or right, in between you two, or three if Uncle is counted in." He shuts up after that.
Eden listens to everyone, she also lets her cat speak. He looked like he knew what he was talking about. When things get quieter, she brings up a sign. "I think Storm can relate to Rafferty. They are alike in some way. Except one is gracious, gorgeous with beautiful hair, and a handsome figure. The other is human."
She doesn't say anything else for amoment, but then the sign switches for another."I like you two together, like it was meant to be. If you two can be together, maybe one day I can find someone too." A third sign quickly follow. "Just remember this for the both of you, and I think it will help. 'Sometimes I wonder how you put up with me, then I remember how I put with you. So we're even.'" She grins.
Nena looks between Rafferty and his co-conspiring cat, then to Eden when the girl starts to flash her signs. She takes a moment to process before stating to the trio:
"I do not detect any errors or inconsistencies in my behaviour. However, I am also a robot, and therefore both morally and functionally superior to humans and also cats."
She lets her declaration hang in the air for a few seconds before adding, in the same monotone:
"That was a joke."
Is that perhaps a pout on Rafferty's lips, as Eden teases him? It seems so. The look he gives Storm lacks the usual warmth he shows towards the animal. Is it possible he's jealous of a cat?
He softens as he reads Eden's sign, nodding his blond head in agreement.
"Yeah, we are good together aren't we? I hope you find someone too, Eden. Preferably someone who doesn't shock easily."
He throws the blue haired girl a wink.
"We put up with you because you're never dull. You put up with Nena, because she's highly intelligent and takes no shit. Me? I'm pretty to look at."
His girlfriend's humour hits the spot and as he starts to laugh, any remaining tension seems to leave his body.
"I better get to chemistry class."
He eyes the book that Eden is still sitting on.
"I'll share a textbook with Ryan and get a new one after school."
Eden's eyes go big as Nena makes a joke, and a sign appears, in big freaky font. "IT MAKES JOKES, IT'S ALIVE. IT'S ADORABLE." She stands up from the book, and runs toward the nearby Nena to tackle hug her. She doesn't expect to make her fall or anything, but damn it was so freaking adorable. She was reacting like a mother hearing her baby say mama for the first time. The book forgotten right now.
Storm is also impressed by the ability of Nena at trying to do a joke, but not to the extend of Eden. He does smile however. When he sees the look Rafferty gives him however, he mistakenly believe it's because of the fish. "Oh next time, I will get two, so I can share with you!! Sorry!"
Eden then looks at Raffery, raising an eyebrow. She release Nena, and goes get the book. She opens it at a random page, and then moves her lips, as well as point a finger toward Rafferty as if she was casting a spell or curse on him. Storm looks at Rafferty. "Oh oh..." But they were just messing with him. "I got to go to gym I think, or was it Math. One of the two." Her sign says. She then throws the offending book straight into a tree, and even managed to make it stick in. She makes another sign. "Before paper, it was tree. Now it is back to tree." She looks at them both. "You both take care." Her last sign of this particular time. Then she grabs Storm, and starts running. It's one of the only time she actually look like an ordinary teenage schoolgirl.
Log created on 09:58:57 04/14/2021 by Nena, and last modified on 15:01:21 04/14/2021.