Title: we get high in the back seats of cars
Info: Repo! The Genetic Opera, Shilo/Blind Mag, PG. Written for brighteyedcat for her birthday. Probably more libretto verse than movie verse. Title from “The Way We Get By” by Spoon.
The night’s medicine pulling on her eyelids, Shilo pulls against it. She sits in a blue-lit bedroom until late hours—past a suitable bedtime—hitting complicated keystrokes and easing the sensor across her desk. Access, as it were, isn’t the problem. Headphones and 3-D goggles in place, she nods deeper and deeper against her chest, startling when she realizes her eyes have been closed for the space of an aria. Mag’s voice pulses through her soggy head and trembles all the way to Shilo’s toes.
Newest bootleg, high quality. Not as good as live, but nothing is. The drug does something to make it better, strings the notes further, stretches Mag’s voice through her consciousness until the words are tendrils of wild hair caressing Shilo’s face in the cool night air. She’ll go to the show—next week, maybe. If she starts planning soon, her dad will never know.
In the bright message window, Shilo types in shorthand to people she’s never seen and never will. She posted once, in a forum, that she—Bgcollector17—was Blind Mag’s goddaughter, and got promptly blocked by the admin. Hacking skills, initiate. Not her fault she was related—related?—to a famous opera singer. Not her fault they didn’t believe.
It wasn’t even that Shi saw her mother in Mag’s performances, or heard her in the words of songs. She’d never had a mother to recognize. No big—fact of life. There’s not much to do in a jail cell existence, and music… it speaks in a way that her father never does.
With the stars outside blotted out by high-rise billboards, and the wind smelling faintly of death, Shilo slides again into sleep, watching a track of formerly-Blind Mag sing, her eyes a flash of white against the darkness of everything else that Shilo knows. Mag told her a story once, about a woman—the smoothest hair, the softest skin—and the words made Shilo weak in the knees. She needed medicine, of course, but Mag gave her a kiss. Something remembered but still new. “Those are her lips,” Mag said, and her voice was neither happy nor sad.
It comes back to her, when defenses grow fuzzy. She’ll go to the opera again soon—next week. Mag sings a high note, and Shilo blinks, awake, barely. The story’s not done. Not nearly.