The only real backstory I saw was when she talked about Rory and the whole “Sunday Brunch” thing. I think with the first person present that things still feel pretty immediate (one of the perks of present tense) so that paragraph doesn’t seem like an issue to me. If you wanted to change it, I’d break it up a bit. This part stands on its own:
My best friend Zelda, who also knows Rory from college, was like: “Well, he obviously likes to hang out with you, but you’re solidly in the friend lane with this Sunday brunch thing.” It’s not that I thought I was changing lanes and moving to the speeding girlfriend lane. I just wondered. Trust Zelda for straight talk.[/quote
The rest can probably be peppered in elsewhere, especially as a reason for calling Rory to the dreaded meeting with her Ex.
I’m loving the callout of the trope, especially since it’s pretty clear 1: this is what’s probably going to happen, and 2: Rory already likes her well enough to hang out with her a lot AND is willing to read her genre IN PUBLIC as a guy. If it was just homework for editing purposes, he probably wouldn’t do it in public. And he probably wouldn’t do it exactly when he KNOWS she’ll show up and see him doing it. That’s… more than just a friend thing.
…. I’m gonna go marvel at the fact that I just recognized romance in action… And …. right, there was another purpose to this homework.
I don’t see a misbelief moment, really… I do see signs of insecurity. Careful attention to appearance (the battle armor of social situations) and dragging Rory to the meeting so she’s not alone. (though that’s not so much insecure as it is common sense social defense) I didn’t catch if she specifically asked him to be a fake boyfriend or not.
If there is a misbelief moment in this first scene, I’d say it’s probably something like “Appearance is everything.” She’s careful with her clothes, arriving first, and brought Rory so she appears to be happy/has someone to balance things. Getting warm or have I gone into Arctic territory?
Author of Renn and The Springfield Chronicles