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Sydney

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The door slammed with the sort of obnoxious wave of sound that only one human being was capable of producing.

“Ives? Babe? Is that you?” Harley called out as she toed her boots off.

“Yeah, I’m in the kitchen! Just follow the smell of burning lasagne,” Ivy muttered, mainly to herself. She was elbows deep in the oven and her usually obedient hair was puffed, the tresses sporadic in direction. She made no comment on the extra set of footsteps padding down the hall, too busy looking for her oven mitts to notice.

“Oh good! You’re making food.” Harley made her way through their apartment’s hall and down over to the kitchen’s open expanse. She walked awkwardly over to the island, a strawberry banana slush in hand. “Great, because, um, we may need to set an extra plate. Or a bowl works too.” Her small frame did little to shield their extra guest.

“No, I’m not making food. I was attempting to make food.” Ivy blew a stray hair out of her face as she pulled out a casserole dish with the annihilated remnants of what may have once been dairy and tomato. Burnt pasta sheets stuck to the pan, sad and destroyed. That was gonna be hell to scrape off later. “There’s a big difference that I’m sure your tastebuds will want to murder me for and—Harley?”

“Yeah, Ivy?” Harley asked, the picture of cherubic purity.

“Quick question,” said Ivy in that same reluctantly resigned tone of voice.

“Shoot,” she said, batting her eyelashes.

Ivy centered herself. Stress was bad for the plants. After a moment of deep breathing, she inquired, “What the fuck is that?”

“...A smoothie.”

“Harley—!”

“—aaand a mutant hyena.”

Of course this was her life. Of course her wife would bring home a mutant hyena, and of course that mutant hyena was currently standing on its hind legs trying to tear the leg off an island stool before moving on to wreak havoc across the rest of the kitchen. Of course– breathe, Ivy. Stress was bad for the plants. Stress was bad for the plants. Stress was bad for the plants.

“...”

“...”

“Harls. One more question?” Ivy managed, in a casual tone.

“Ya-huh?”

“Why the fuck is there a mutant hyena in my kitchen? And—Oh god, what is it doing to the salad bowl—Hey! Hey, You little fucker, I just bought that dressing—get off of that!”

“Sydney! No, baby, down! That’s people food.”

Harley herded the hyena away from the kitchen counter and into the living room. The animal, unoccupied by food for the moment, took to sniffing about every inch of their apartment. Droplets of drool trailed behind from her lolling tongue.

If she eats a plant I’m gonna kill something, Ivy thought to herself. And, oh great, now it was doing that butt drag thing. Pinching the bridge of her nose, she turned to Harley. “So do you wanna explain or…?”

“Well! I was takin’ a stroll through some old stompin’ grounds, blowing shit up, y'know the usual on my way to breakfast. And then I’m passin’ by the old power plant—the one that’s next to the medicinal marijuana joint—the one that’s next to the old folk’s home next to the nursery—when I suddenly hear whinin’ in the bushes. Turns out this poor little gal was shaking and half starved, caught her big ol’ leg in the brambles, and I just took one look at her big manic eyes and fell instantly in love. Like the love a Mother has for her newborn. Y’know before they start wailing and pooping and passing you off to pervy uncles while they go to bingo night—“

“Harls.”

“—Anyways, I just couldn’t leave the poor little psycho alone. So I took her to the vet, kindly persuaded the lady there at knife point to give my baby her shots, stole a collar and several other supplies from the pet store owned by that guy with the lazy eye who smells like Barack Obama, and brought her home with me. Oh! And I named her Sydney. After the cross-dressin’ professor I had during AP Psyche back in college.”

“The professor that hid those china dolls in his basement and force-fed his girlfriend canned tuna fish?”

“Yeah that one! I said to her, ‘I shall call you Sydney, and you shall be mine, and you shall be my Sydney.’ Yes I did, my sweet smiley baby.” Harley knelt in front of Sydney and scratched behind her ears. The hyena laughed through the smushy-face treatment. “And now we’ve got a new member of the family, yaaaay! So, when’s dinner?”

“...”

“...”

“...”

“...”

“...................”

“..................................”

“Fuck. Okay,” said Ivy, recovering. “Well, I need to remake this lasagne or whatever so uh… gimme forty-five?”

And that was that.