I'm used to people saying my love life is weird, what with Harmon being more than twice my age and all, at least until we went to the Inn and now I'm not just physically older, but he's biologically my daughter, which makes things weirder. Or actually weird, if you consider that women have been pairing off with older men forever, whether you see it as guys with power and authority claiming the young and pretty ones for themselves or it being a biological or cultural imperative that comes from women of childbearing age pairing with proven survivors, so it's the current fad for matching ages that's weird (yeah, I've had some practice with this). I've gotten pretty used to shrugging that sort of thing off.
Still, sometimes this situation gives me some idea of what other people may have thought when they liked at us. Like, the other morning, I get a text from the real Magda. "Hey," she types, "is it weird that I think there's a spark between me and Davy?"
In case you've forgotten, the real Alicia and Magda became Carly and Belinda, sisters who run a cupcake shop in Austin, TX, and they took to it pretty well; they maybe weren't quite the Gilmore Girls before the switch, but Magda was closer in age to Alicia than a lot of other moms, the divorce left them united against the husband & father who abandoned them rather than blaming each other, and... Well, I don't know. The point is, becoming sisters want a huge change in their dynamic. The day-to-day of running a small business was a challenge for them, though, so the original sisters, now both guys, wound up coming down to help out.
"Nah," I replied, "it's only natural to feel a connection with the person who had your shape or vice versa."
"Sure, but Davy used to be Carly."
I literally recoiled from the phone at that, like, leaned back with a big "no!" on my face. Fortunately, we weren't using video or anything, and I took a while to text back "depends if it's a vibe coming from you or 'him'..." She dropped it, and hadn't mentioned it since.
I kind of can't blame her for looking, though; we're all only human. Still, I could probably handle my boyfriend being kind of both here and not here if it weren't for the fact that Magda's kind of popular, making it clear that I've got options. Not quite "every head turns when she walks into a room" or multiple guys idly wondering what she's doing tonight popular, but if I hang out with people after work, I've got some attention, and I get asked for my number a lot. Not like Harmon does, of course, but more than I expected at first, and more than I did in my real life, even though I was in my mid-twenties, blonde, and not in bad shape. Of course, I was often kind of focused on studies or some other task, and Magda's job is about being open and helpful. Combine that with the sheer number of middle-aged or older guys who go through an airport on a day, and even if the native silver-fox population is folks like pilots and air traffic controllers who expect the likes of Magda to show interest in them first, there's a lot of guys (including a really unnerving amount of married guys), and not a few women who might like a night out with her.
So she's used to that, and I'm getting hit with a lot of it, and folks are starting to notice me saying no or making excuses, including Magda, who at least doesn't seem upset that I'm not getting that far into character, though she reserves the right to give me hell for the rest of my life if she gets back and everyone starts treating her like being a nun is what everyone thinks she aspires to. I don't deliberately play it coy, like I might have a secret boyfriend I'm not yet ready to tell people about, but people take it that way. Magda goes through men, and if I'm not doing it obviously, then I must be doing it secretly.
Sadly, the closest thing I've got to men in my life right now, aside from Harmon, are the trainers at the gym. That was a suggestion from Magda; as she points out, the only way someone her age has the figure I inherited is magic (ha ha) or hard work, and if I was feeling fatigued at times, it might be a matter of me getting her body when she was just coming off lolling around on the beach for vacation and then having me not pick things up. She figured I probably want eating very well, either, not knowing the regimen that works for her body and probably grabbing a lot of junk food in the food court or corner store when I had a minute. Guilty as charged.
So I've been eating a little different and spending a fair chunk of time in the gym lately. The first trip was the worst - I had the treadmill going way too fast, and what was probably a good workout for skinny 25-year-old me had curvy 45-year-old me really sore, really fast. I dialed it back the next time, and raised a few eyebrows when I started switching things around - I like the rowing machines a lot more than the treadmills, both because I did a semester of crew in school and because it works the upper body a bit more than just running. Magda never really tried it, kind of thinking of rowing as a sort of snobby thing, but I'm starting to feel better, much less worn-out when don't things like hauling laundry or running from one gate to another on some errand.
And, I must admit, I'm starting to feel a bit differently about the wardrobe she left me. A month ago, I talked about shoving all the manhunter stuff aside, but feeling a little better about the shape of my body had me getting some out and trying it on while Harmon was away for work the other day. It's not really me, but neither is the face in the mirror, and it's certainly fun to think about just going out to get what you want, rather than fretting over whether you're showing too much, worrying you can't pull something off, or just hoping the right guy would come to you. So far, the only time someone has seen me wearing one of them was last night, when I figured that something clingy with a cape added would make for a good sorceress costume to wear while handing out candy (aside - I kind of can't wait to see pictures of Harmon working in a Halloween costume when one of his coworkers puts on social media).
I almost want to get all dressed up to go out and shoot down the guys who figure they're doing a woman in her forties a favor by hitting on her, just to kind of feel that sort of power and confidence. It can be hard to recognize when you've had so much taken by something competent out of your control, but it can feel pretty fantastic.