1964-09-18 - Down Here You'll Jam Too!
Summary: Gwen's been doing renovations!
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
mary-jane-watson kamala gwen-stacy 

Gwen wipes the sweat from her brow and smiles.
It took a lot of work. The insurance money took a big hit. But this was an investment, and she felt her father would not be displeased by the choice.
She walked over to the phone, picked the receiver from the cradle, took a deep breath…and dialed Mary Jane.

After the second ring, MJ's voice echos in the phone, "Hey, this is MJ!" She keeps it simple, as she sounds like she's a little bored, all things considered. Besides, there's no weird magics that allow you to actually SEE who's calling you!

About the same time that MJ answers the phone there's a ringing of the doorbell at the Stacy residence. Standing outside, Kamala is bouncing on the balls of her feet. She came back to get the casserole dish she left at Gwen's house - after a good ear chewing from her Ammi about not staying around to make sure the ladies she was with did in fact eat and enjoy the food, and to bring back her casserole dish.

On a side note, Gwen said she knew a shapeshifting superhero. And well, that's totally in her wheelhouse.

Stacy hears the doorbell and walks over to the front door. "Hey, MJ! How are ya? Listen, I have something BIG I want to show you. It's IMPORTANT. Life-changing important."
She opens the door and smiles. "Besides, I see a friendly young lady who I think would like to see something awesome, too. You want to let her be the only one to see it by herself? I thought you were a better person than that and you'd better get over here. SLACKER."

Gwen waves Kamala in.

Mary Jane sounds pretty good at fake-annoyed, "Sure, let me call my taxi servi… oh, wait, that's you, Gwen." She laughs, "Swing by the campus and pick me up on the way to see the awesome thing? But wait, you have friends that aren't me? I'm shocked!"

When she's waved in, Kamala slips inside. "Salam!" she greets cheerfully to Gwen, and then glances around. "I'm not going to get swamped by people again, am I?" she asks, a bit of a nervous smile offered. "Oh, I didn't mean to interrupt your conversation, I just wanted to visit - I left Ammi's casserole dish here and she went on for a good hour about how it was one of the first things they bought when they arrived in America. And just bleah. So square."

Gwen smiles. "Wanna go for a ride in the Infidel Machine again, Kam?" She turned back to the phone. "I'll be there in ten minutes, and the Paki-girl's ridin' shotgun!"

MJ grins, "So you'll be here in five, got it. I'll see you and Kamala in a little bit then, bai!" And with that she hangs up, and gets her place on the assigned reading bookmarked for later. Gwen's got something cool to show, and that's more important than homework she can do in her sleep…

"I'm getting swamped with people again." Kamala says with a little laugh, before nodding entusiastically. "Sure!" she responds to the ride in the sweet sweet infidel machine. "Hey.." she waits for the phone to be hung up. "..you.. uhm. You said you knew someone that could change their size?" she asks suddenly, chewing on her bottom lip nervously. "If you could change anything, I mean, if you had that type of ability, what would you do?"

Gwen tilts her head, then gets her keys. "Let's chat in the car. With the windows up."
And just like that, they are gone in 60 seconds, tearing down the streets of New York.
Gwen drives rather well in traffic. She seems to anticipate where the holes in the traffic are before they appear.
As she drives, she talks.
"I was thinking about your question, Kam. And the truth is…physical changes are cosmetic. The only thing I would change about myself is my heart. My sense of duty. My devotion to my friends. Being true to myself, doing what's right. I'd want to be better at ALL those things. Being the person my father would be proud to know."

And waiting at the corner by her dorm is Mary Jane, who hops in the back, "Hey Gwen, and… it's Kamala, right? Mary Jane, but everyone calls me MJ." She smiles and looks over at Gwen, "Okay, so what's the big thing you want to show off?"

"Friends surround one like a body, one part always ready to support the other in the times when another is ill. I was a bad friend recently. I wasn't around when your father passed, and for that, I apologize." Kamala says with an earnest tone to her voice. "You have to believe in yourself before others will believe in you." she responds. "Which means.. well. I have something to show you sometime." But not right now, because as they pull up to the dorms, suddenly there's a gorgeous redhead.

We have a gorgeous blonde. A drop-dead readhead. And.. a mousey Pak-American. "Oh, I can sit in the back so you two can sit together.." Kamala is offering quickly as she opens the door, but Mary Jane is squeezing by and the girl is actually making herself just a bit smaller - hopefully not noticably so - so that Mary Jane is comfortable in the back. "Hi, MJ!"

"Sit in, shut up, buckle up, and HANG ON."
And like some gumshow detective in a Stutz Bearcat, She wheels around, the back end swinging as she drives out of the lot.
Five frantic minutes later, the car rolls into the garage next to the house.
Gwen practically JUMPS out of the car, as skittish as any colt. "Come on, come on!" she says, opening the door, nervous and excited. "It's down in the basement!"

Mary Jane would say something about Kamala not having to scoot so far forward, because, well, she's nice like that. Unfortunately, she's suddenly caught in a 4-G turn as Gwen decides to hightail it to the garage. Then she grins and gets out of the car, "Coming, coming!" She then pauses and grins at Kamala, "So, um, you play any musical instruments?"

Who needs theme parks when you have Gwen Stacy and the Great Petrol Infidel Beast? Kamala white-knuckles the whole trip, but she's clearly thrilled at the idea of swooping in and out of traffic. So much better than public transportation! When they arrive back at the house, she's stepping out on shaky legs, much like a newborn foal, but oh man, is she grinning. She goes to follow after the others, and blinks at the question. "Unless you count the finger cymbals used in some of the traditional dances? No.." she offers, suddenly concerned that this is going to vote her out of the group if she somehow can't suddenly play an instrument as she follows the others to the basement.

Gwen leads them to the door to the basement, and as she opens the door, there is a wealth of smells that wafts up. Fresh sawdust. Pine oil. WD-40.
She heads down wooden steps that have been torn out and rebuilt fresh, stronger, well-sanded, the stain recently dried. The basement does not smell dank or feel small. It hasa been dug out, expanded, reinforced.
And a stage has been built, the wood polished, with a sound mixer off to the side. A drum kit sits at the rear of the stage. A treble guitar, a bass guitar, and a viola all sit on metal stands on the stage.
"MJ…Kamala…our recording studio!"

Mary Jane grins over at Kamala, "Wanna learn? We're just looking for a bassist…" She blinks at Gwen, and looks amazed at the reveal, "Holy… wow, Gwen, how did you manage to get all this?!?" She just stares at the stage, and the mixer, and whistles, "Wow."

"I'm not sure I could learn well enough to be in a band…" And then as they step into the studio, Kamala lets out a low whistle of appreciation as she turns to take it all in. "You made all this on your own, Gwen? It is very impressive!" she offers to the young woman with a smile as she folds her arms across her midsection as she ohs. "You're in a band? I had forgotten! Right, the Mary Janes - oh - now it makes sense.." Kamala's smile shows a hint of abashment as she suddenly realizes what she had stepped into. At least she didn't have a giant frog monster down here?

Gwen took a deep breath. "My father's…hazard pay. Dying while on the job." She exhales slowly. "It was just sitting there, collecting interest, and I realized this house needed PEOPLE again. People make a home. And I felt I wanted to DO something, instead of just…sit and do nothing and live in the past. I can't do that anymore. I worked my BUTT off building this. It was like boxcar derby plans, only different. My dad and I built the back porch when i was nine. This was more difficult." She smiled to the two of them. "I want you both to feel welcome. MJ, because you are the face of our band. You have that…raw charisma, that force of will." She looked to Kamala. "I know we don't believe the same things, but this is America. I want you to know that there is someplace you can go where you will always be welcome. If you have talent and want to develop it, that's great. We need many hats filled here. We need a bass guitarist. We're rough, too. But we can learn and grow and be BETTER."

MJ nods over at Kamala, even as she blushes a bit when Gwen calls her the face of the band. "It's true, you'd always be welcome, if you're in the band or not. But come on, haven't you ever wanted to play music?" She grins, "Still… wow, a studio!" Okay, she's a little flabbergasted at the sight of it all. This was not what she was expecting.

There's a long pause as Kamala stands just on the outside of the studio, digesting what it is that Gwen and MJ are saying. This is different. Back in Jersey City, she's used to being the odd girl that sits in the corner, never drinks, never smokes. Never says a swear word. Wears the weird dresses and scarves. "I am American." she finally says. "My parents came here to find a better life, to escape from the collapse of the British Empire.." she manages finally as she lifts her chin a bit and her brown eyes flash for a moment. "Thank.. thank you for welcoming me. You are always welcomed in my home as well." she responds, reaching up to wipe at her eyes with her sleeves. Noone told Kamala they were cutting onions down here! "I could be terrible, you know.. but.. I'm willing to try." she admits finally - and with all the building of her morale and confidence by Gwen, the girl is feeling just a bit taller. And she ahems softly. "Is there a powder room I may borrow? I'm going to muss up my eyeliner!"

Gwen points to a freshly-painted white door, with ROCKERS on the sign at the top of the door. "Right through there. Replaced the toilet and cleaned everything." She smiles to MJ as Kamala heads to the bathroom. "I figured down here, we could use that. As well as the fridge over there." She points to a small area set aside for a rolling chopping-block table and a rather stately-if-elderly refrigerator. "Snacks, drinks, the whole schmeal. Plus, I added soundproofing to the outer walls and roof."
A lot of work…for a very strong girl.

Mary Jane chuckles, "Cool. Can't believe you got a mixing board too…" She walks over towards the guitar, picking up the red and blue Stratocaster and strumming a bit experimentally, tuning it slightly as she hears it just a bit off… but then, it normally is at first. "Wow." Okay, she might be saying wow for a while with this.

Gwen grins. "All this is used. I had someone check these over, make sure they were tuned. Fenders, every one of them." She points to the drum set. "Ludwig. Decent shape."

MJ nods, grinning as she plays a few chords, fingers dancing across the strings. The twang is faint, since the amps are off… but Mary Jane can hear enough to smile wider, "Oh, Gwen, this is gonna be so boss. Hope we can get Kamala to join our merry group. I have a good feeling about her."

Gwen nods. "And I think Jessie will give us a different sound with the electric viola. I got the mixing board to make it sound like a slide guitar." She smiles warmly to MJ. "I even…I even wrote music." She goes to the dresser, opening it to pull out sheets of music. "I mean…it's all angry music. No love songs or anything."

Mary Jane grins, "I like angry music… I think that's kinda the point, right? Though we can probably do some ballads too, eventually. There's way too much crooning when you hear a woman sing on the radio as it is. All 'my boyfriend this' and 'my boyfriend that'. Pfeh." She sets the guitar down and follows Gwen over, looking curious as to what Gwen's written so far.

The titles seem to scream. STRANGLEHOLD. NIGHT TERRORS. STAND UP. TAKING IT TO THE STREETS. Lyrics full of repressed rage released, righteous indignation, or just verbally shaking a fist at corruption, hate, bigotry, and fear.

MJ nods, "Yeah, you're feeling it, I can see it." She smiles over at Gwen, "Definitely got some good stuff here… love what you're doing with this." If she thinks they might need a few other songs, she doesn't say it. Besides, she likes the angry idea, because angry gets shit done.

Gwen smiles wryly. "It came out like a torrent for one week solid. There's this one, ONLY HUMAN, that I'm working on, about mutants being people too." She points, looking a little nervous. "I want these songs to…to shake the rafters."

Mary Jane nods, "Yeah, me too. I want to see the pillars of Heaven shake when we play our music." She grins wolfishly, "We might do a love song, but if we do, we're doing it our way." Because apparently MJ has a few ideas too, but she knows that Gwen has to get this out of her system too.

Gwen smirks, then reaches into her pocket and holds up a key. "To the back door. Should you need to come in at all hours and just let it rip. There's paper and pencils in the dresser as well as some other things. The bottom one is mine, I keep breaking drumsticks."

MJ grins, "Sweet." She takes the key and nods, "Might come over here when I need to get an escape from campus. Just have to remember to bring my homework back with me." She laughs a bit, then nods at Gwen, "Well, breaking the sticks means you're jamming right."

Kamala is in the rockers room for several minutes. She needed to compose herself, after all and she takes a long look in the mirror. For a moment, her features morph and change, almost taking on the likeness of the other Marvel, but she stops herself. "Be yourself." she reminds her reflection and draws in a breath before washing her hands and drying them before stepping out again and turns her eyes to the pair of women. "Sorry.. this is all.." she considers, and speaks in Urdu, "Aandha kya chahe do aankhein.." she then pauses and explains. "Roughly translated, a wish come true."

Gwen smiles. "Kamala Khan, I want you to try it all. That's how you find out what you like. Want to get the feel for the bass guitar?" She walks over and picks it up. Another Fender, the bass version. "Don't worry if you feel like you have to get better. We ALL have to get better. But if we get better together, it means more. And we have a redhead, an Irish Blonde, a Romany fiddler…so why not a Persian bass player?"

MJ grins, "Makes sense to me. We're all gonna be learning here. And we can help coach you along, plus I know a few bass players on campus, I'm sure we can get some lessons in that way…" She goes back and picks up her guitar, playing the opening notes of 'Love Me Do' as she smiles, fingers dancing along the frets.

Kamala accepts the bass gratefully, and she looks between the two women. "Why not?" she agrees with them finally, and tries to pluck a little at the strings. Oh yeah. She's got a /lot/ to learn. But she's enthusiastic, at least?

Gwen smiles knowingly. "All we have to do is get on scheduling and set up when we can get together to practice. Forget about gigs, or moving the gear, or even an income. This is the scraping-off-the-stink phase. All that other stuff comes later." She puts out her fist, low, at waist level. "To the Mary Janes. Listen, or get out of the way."

Mary Jane nods, "Right, we need to practice. And it's gonna take a lot of practice." She grins at Gwen, and returns the salute, "And that sounds perfect to me. But don't worry Kamala, we'll get you up to speed. It's ninety percent enthusiasm."

After a few plucks on the strings, Kamala pauses in her play to put her fist against Gwen's. It's what she wanted, right? A fist bump? "To the Mary Janes!"

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