Some friendshippyness for feministkendra, with love from fairykam and I. :) Fairykam drew the picture here. Check out her tumblr page - she's wonderful!

Warren walked into the living room with Vanessa trailing behind him, each of them carrying boxes which appeared to be pretty heavy judging by the way the bottoms were sagging. Bracken, Seth and Kendra were playing a board game at the coffee table and looked up as the two cardboard containers were placed on the carpet near the entertainment center.

"What's in those?" Seth asked, craning his neck to try and catch a glimpse of what was inside when Warren and Vanessa lifted the lids of the boxes in question. It looked like a bunch of thick papers or large envelopes or something from his distance.

"Records," Vanessa said, blowing dust off the top of her box's inner contents.

"Old people stuff," Warren chipped in. Vanessa elbowed him and he flashed her a cheeky grin while he simultaneously complained about the sharpness of her bony joints.

"Records? What kinds of records? Important papers?" Kendra added.

"No, these are vinyl records. Music used to be recorded on them." Vanessa pulled one of the records in question out of the box and removed its paper jacket to reveal a black, flat and round object.

A sound of recognition escaped from Bracken. "I've seen those in movies before," he stated. Curiosity got the better of him and he stood up in order to walk closer and investigate. "Are they heavy?"

"Yeah, but I'm pretty strong so it wasn't too big of a deal," Warren bragged, flexing his arms while Vanessa rolled her eyes at him. Kendra and Seth smiled at their cousin, who winked back at them and stopped posing.

"Where did they come from?" Seth asked.

Vanessa pulled out another record in order to examine it. "Your grandparents have a bit of a collection in the attic, and I wanted to try listening to some of them. We came across them while working on a clean-up project."

Warren clapped his hands together. "Stan said there was a record player inside the entertainment center. Let's open it up and see what we've got." He pulled on the wooden doors in question and, sure enough, a record player rested on the top shelf. Warren grabbed it and opened it up, then asked Seth to fetch a damp towel so he could clear off the dust inside of it. While Seth was in the kitchen preparing the requested cloth, Warren checked the wires which came from the record player and confirmed that speakers were indeed connected, however the player itself needed to be plugged into an electrical outlet. That was easily remedied and, after Seth returned with the wet towel, Warren had it cleaned up in no time. "This hasn't been used in a long time," he remarked.

Bracken and Kendra had taken to looking through the records, reading their covers and checking the discs themselves for cracks or other damage as Vanessa instructed them to do. Kendra thought she recognized some of the songs mentioned on the jackets, but the majority were unfamiliar to her.

"Which one's first?" Warren directed his question to Vanessa.

"Here, try this one," she said, passing one of the large, black circles to him. Warren lifted the arm on the player, placed the record down onto the turntable and flipped the switch to turn it on, then moved the arm toward the center of the disc and lowered the pin onto the surface of the record. Bracken, Seth and Kendra watched him do this with great interest.

Unfortunately, no sound came from the speakers. Warren lifted the record back out of the player and examined it more closely, then remarked, "It looks like it's a little warped. I don't think we're going to be able to make it work. Do you have another one ready?"

"Yep. You'll probably like this one." Vanessa handed another record to Warren, who loaded it into the player and replaced the pin. This time, music sprung forth within a few seconds and Warren grinned happily once he heard the tune. Kendra's ears perked up, too, when she recognized the song - it was one which played on her dad's favorite radio station fairly often, so she and Seth had heard it many times in the past.

"Good call, Nessa." Warren sent her a thumbs up, then grabbed the TV remote control from the top of the coffee table and started dancing and singing along to the music, using the remote control as a pretend microphone. Seth, Bracken and Vanessa laughed at his exuberance while Kendra quietly sang along and smiled at him.

When Warren realized that Kendra was singing, he handed her the remote control for the DVD player and then pulled her toward the center of the living room to join his dance. She giggled and shook her head, but ultimately decided to join in on his impromptu song-and-dance routine.

Uptown girl

You know I can't afford to buy her pearls

But maybe someday when my ship comes in

She'll understand what kind of guy I've been

And then I'll win

Warren took hold of her hand and spun her in a circle under his arm while they both continued to sing.

And when she's walking

She's looking so fine

And when she's talking

She'll say that she's mine

Kendra pulled Warren down to her level and they sang directly into each other's faces with hands on the other's shoulders and joy in their eyes.

She'll say I'm not so tough

Just because

I'm in love

With and uptown girl

She's been living in her white bread world

As long as anyone with hot blood can

And now she's looking for a downtown man

That's what I am

Toward the end of the song, Kendra and Warren pulled Seth, Vanessa and Bracken into the heart of the living room as well. Seth joined in a little with the singing, too, while Vanessa and Bracken mostly just danced. The positive energy in the room was almost palpable and, as the song concluded, Warren ruffled Kendra's hair and the group burst into laughter.

"That was fun," Warren announced. "We should do this more often."

The next song began to play - another upbeat one by the same musician - and Kendra beamed as Vanessa snatched the remote out of her hand and began singing along with Warren this time.

Kendra had to agree with her cousin. Spur of the moment semi-karaoke parties in the living room were pretty fantastic.