Sisters, Sketches, and Shops

Manhattan - Rags to Stitches by Ren-Fare

One of the windows of the storefront displays the extremely limited and random hours that there is someone guaranteed to be in the store. Below that is information to call to make an appointment or to ask various questions, along with the link to the Ren-Fare website.

A tiny bell mounted to the top of the door jingles each time that it is opened. The front room that it leads to is far from large or even fancy. One side of the room has a few racks with several examples of creations by the owner. Located next to the clothing is a platform surrounded on three sides by mirrors which is used for fittings done in the office.

On the other side of the room is a small and humble desk, along with several chairs for any who choose to sit while they wait.

There's a back room that is labeled 'Employees Only' that is usually found to be closed.


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Bridget Bishop Brooke Bishop

It's that time of day where things are the busiest and yet turning into the most relaxed. Work days are over, commutes home are being made and yet it isn't quite time for dinner. The sun is still high in the sky on a warm and beautiful day.

A new inhabitant of the Garment District is hard at work. While the door is unlocked due to finishing touches, the shop is not quite open yet. In a corner near the door is a rolled up banner declaring the grand opening of Rags to Stitches, which promises a nice discount on orders.

Crouching in front of the store window, on the inside, is none other than the new owner: Bridget. She's using a stencil to adhere the store hours and information on in place of having a sign. Music plays from a small laptop that is placed behind the counter which is hooked to a small speaker system within the room. It's a small home setup but could be good for clients.

Bridget is singing and moving along to the music as she works. It doesn't take much to make her happy.


"Glad to see you went with the name I told you too," Brooke says as she breezes into the shop. She doesn't give two hoots if it's open or not. It's her sister's shop, and she'll come and go as she pleases — when the place is open. She'd never dare to insult Bridget and wander in when the store was closed, unless it was an emergency.

"So I need a dress. Whether you make it or help me find it… it needs to be… special."


"And worthy of dancing in at a club."


"And it needs to show off my best assets."


Eventually Brooke will find herself with a key so entry will never be an issue. The siblings are close and trust each other. If Brooke is a life insurance beneficiary, she can certainly have a key to her shop.

"It really was too good of an idea to pass up. I know that browser searches do okay by me, but I'm hoping that this might stir up some attention that even the internet can't give me." Such as those who prefer to do their dealings in person rather than online.

With the information securely on the window, Bridget puts down her utensils and immediately moves over to a rack. "Oh, I'll make you one, from scratch, too. At least I know what colors you like and look good on you, so there's a leg up on that." She holds a dress up in front of Brooke that is roughly her size but a very hip yet stylish cut. "Something like this?"

It isn't until she's been debating dresses for a while that Bridget blinks. "Wait, is this for a date, or another launch?"


"It will definitely give you a lot of business. Especially here. You'll get some people from the fashion industry stopping in too, I'm sure, and that can really kick start your career." Not that Bridget has ever had issues with her business, but it will bring in a different class of clientele.

"Can you do it in a week?" Brooke is smiling from ear to ear, and she glances at the dress. "Maybe a little shorter, a little showier, and in gold?"


"A date."


It's a good thing that Bridget still has her sister's measurements from the suits she fitted her for recently. The dress is put back and she walks to the counter. From there she pulls out a sketch book and starts putting down an idea for a dress.

"Business can be a good and a bad thing. You know how special I make these goods, and I'd like to say my turnaround is pretty fast. I don't want to have to hire someone to assist me who doesn't add that little bit extra that I do." Even those who have no idea about witches and magic get the special treatment, because Bridget tends to mother everyone.

A bit of gold is splashed onto the page with a marker. "A date?" A singular brow rises as she holds the sketch up to Brooke to examine. It's short without crossing any boundaries and certainly accents certain features. "I pass my material store on the way home so I can easily pick up the cloth for the dress. It could be done in a few days tops." The look lingers, as if silently prompting for more information.


"So why not hire another witch from the Coven to take on as an apprentice? I'm sure there are plenty of younger girls that would love to go into fashion design, and you'd be helping out Regina." Brooke moves over to the counter, and peeks at what her sister is doing with the quick design work. She's never ceased to be amazed at the artistic ability.

"A second date," Brooke points out quite happily. "I like him, Gidget. Granted, that's a given. He's my type. Dark hair, light eyes…"

There's a beat because she really doesn't want to get into the 'Bryn' lecture again.

"He's charming, witty… a bit upper class though… which works against me." Since they grew up on a farm. "And he owns his own businesses. A bar and a restaurant his father left him."


"Yeah, but you know." This is her business, something she's started from nothing. When it comes to things she's passionate about it is rather difficult for Bridget to keep up. "Proms are almost over, and we're entering convention season. It's busy but it will slow down in a few weeks. Maybe I'll put out some information now to see if anyone is interested." No matter how painful to her it may be.

A few more details are added as Bridget continues to work on the sketch. "What about accessories? Do you have any or would you like me to work on a few of those as well?" She doesn't offer such things with every outfit, but Brooke is special.

Before she questions about the first date, Bridget stares directly at Brooke and shakes her head. "No. Don't you talk like that. Upper crust is good, and perfect for you. You're worth it, and nothing less."

After the brief lecture the information on the man is processed. "And you seem interested in him, too. I promise, I won't nag on you or give you advice I shouldn't as I've never really been in the position. All I have to say is to go for it. It's good to see you interested in a man who isn't going to a bar just to pick up the next random chick."


"I know." Brooke hops up onto the counter, and crosses her legs. It's a good thing she's wearing a pantsuit today. "That's why I mentioned another witch. She'd be easier to work with, and Regina knows you well enough that you could easily ask her to find someone suitable that's just as passionate about the work as you are."

Continuing to watch the sketch as it's born, she grins. "I don't know. I've got earrings and crap at home. Do you think it needs something special?" It's not as though she doesn't go out on dates. She just generally doesn't happen to want to impress very often. For some reason, it's really important to her that she impresses Kieran.

Rolling her eyes at her sister, she laughs. "Gidget, sweetie, he's bloody loaded. He's got to be, the way he sent a car to my flat and all. It was a nice one too."


"Funny you should mention that," she says with another laugh. "I did happen to meet him in a bar. His bar. He's the friend Sera Roche was talking about at dinner."


It's a tough decision to make but eventually she nods. "I'll be sure to mention it to her. I know she'd find the perfect person. I guess if it keeps someone out of trouble and maybe gives them a summer job, I suppose I can do that."

Using her pens she inks in a few little details such as dangle bracelets and a nice necklace with matching earrings. "It's hard to tell. I've really had few reasons to dress to impress. I guess I've been saving that for your shows and maybe something else." Like her sister's wedding, since it likely will come much sooner than her own. If that ever happens. "I think you should have something, but not too much. Accessories are just that; they should never take over an outfit."

A car was sent for her? This brings another look from Bridget. "Loaded is even better." She can't help but smile. "Well, it seems like you've made a good contact with her. I'm glad you decided to meet her friend. I somehow get the feeling that it takes a lot for someone to be considered that good of a friend to her. I should send her a gift basket or something."


"It would have been rude of me not to meet her friend, considering that Steel Clover's launch was in his bar." Brooke bites her lip a little, and then giggles. "Good lord, I sound like a teenager. That's very unbecoming of me. I need to stop this." Realizing her cheeks might just be a little pink, she rubs her hands over them, and then glances down at the dress.

"I like those. I forgot you actually made jewelry."

Brooke will probably never get married. Then again, she's not on the prowl for a husband. For someone compatible, whom she has a great time with? Definitely.

"I don't care about the money, you know that. He's nice." Beat. "He can just give me a certain look, and it sends tingles down my spine. I swear, I haven't felt this way since…" She wafts her hand, again, not caring to get into that discussion.


A sheepish grin is given as she nods and finishes off the sketch. "Okay, okay. Fair enough. But still, meeting him didn't mean that you had to go out on a date with him. If that were the case, I have the feeling he'd be getting a lot of dates, and quite a few of them could be rather awkward." For some reason picturing that makes Bridget chuckle.

The pens are placed down so she can look full on to Brooke. "Yeah, I can. I tend not to get too many orders so it will be nice to work on a few pieces. They're simple enough that they'll be quick to make, but of course they'll have to help protect you. You never know when that Jersey Devil will pick a battle with the wrong person." She's certain that Brooke is no pushover and never completely worries about her. Just a little bit. All the time.

"Yeah, since that. Which means it could just be the right person at the right time. Is he Mister Right? I have no clue, but he's Mister Right for this moment of your life, which is just as good." She clearly knows her sister isn't the Virgin Mary so doesn't even try to lecture her. "I say ride this out as long as it lasts. Which, if you show up wearing this, could be for a little while."


"Oh yes it did," Brooke murmurs under her breath. She's pretty certain that any woman that lays eyes on this man (besides Bridget) would have to go out on at least one date with him.

"Will you have time to do all of that, and your regular orders, without locking yourself in your apartment? I mean, if you can't do it, that's fine. Don't drop orders for me." Worrying her teeth over her lip, she looks down at the dress again and smiles. Even from just a quick sketch, she likes it. "And you have to let me pay you for this one, Gidget."

Rolling her eyes again at the Jersey Devil comment, she shakes her head. "I can hold my own against a coyote or a Jersey Devil, you realize." Potions and the like may not be her strong suit, but Brooke is good at spellcraft.

"Good lord! I've not called him Mister Right. Maybe Mister Right to sex, but I don't know the man well enough to say he's a Mister Right for anything else."


Bridget is rather frigid. It is extremely difficult to please her, but only due to the fact that she adores qualities that are random. Besides, being single really isn't so bad for her. "I won't have to drop anything, and I won't keep myself from seeing the sunlight. I just will have something to occupy myself with while continuing my Netflix Instant addiction. It might actually be a good thing. I don't want to become some TV obsessed zombie or anything." Bridget pauses a moment only to sigh. "We'll work something out for payment. I just wouldn't worry about it until after your date."

She can't help but laugh. "Maybe I should be giving it items to protect it from you." The tease is made but clearly she will continue to offer protection to her sister for these types of things. It is the way that she is. "Besides, the news has quieted down. Maybe it's over for the time being."

The eldest sister laughs once more. "Well then, if I ever meet him? I'll call him Mister Right." The troublesome part of the statement is that she honestly will do it. "I really am glad that you're seeing him, though. Even if it's just for the two dates. This is the type of man that you should be exposing yourself to. Well, I didn't mean it that way. Oh, hell. Take that however you want."


"There's nothing wrong with watching Netflix." Hell, that's what Brooke does most nights she has off. She's out on the town a bit with clients, and having a relaxing night at home isn't a bad thing. "Besides, you'll only be a television obsessed zombie if you take to the forums online and start complaining about everything."


"Gidget, I'm paying you. At least let me do the promotional work for your shop, yeah?"

Face paling, Brooke shakes her head. "Oh god, no. Don't you dare do that. I'd die."


"It's not like Bryn Blackwell was exactly poor, you know. I just… ugh. I don't want to think about it. I think Sera likes him." Beat. "Bryn I mean. I caught them kissing at the party."


"Oh, that could still happen if I'm not careful." Most likely because she doesn't interact with people on a more normal basis. "But hey, there are worse things. At least I'm not a cat lady, or anything like that. I fear I'd forget to feed it, or lose it under the piles of materials at home."

A finger wag is the immediate response. "I will gladly agree to accepting PR work for my shop. I will not, however, discuss prices. At least not yet. I think that this is a good thing we can do, trade services and whatnot." Bridget certainly is a fan of trade, which is how she got into the business to begin with.

Bridget laughs, rather loudly. As it is only the two of them in the shop it doesn't exactly matter to her. "Oh, dear. I'll be good. I promise I won't seek him out, stalk him or even really Google him." Yet. "And Bryn sure as hell was poor. Poor mannered, at least, and that's really what's important. It could do him some good to take lessons from your prince charming."

Wait, what?

"She was kissing him? Well, looks like he's done it again. Maybe she was just using him as an opportunity? I seem to recall that she mentioned she wasn't against that."


"Deal. I'll take out a full page ad in the Times when you're ready to open." Brooke tries to calculate that in her mind, and then cringes. "Maybe a half page. Still, it'll get done."

The loud laugh catches her off guard and she nearly hops off the counter to see what's wrong. "Good. Don't stalk him. I'm sure I gave off enough of a creepy vibe as-is." The constant blushing, the looking away, surely those are signs that she shouldn't have gotten a second date, and yet…

"Gidget, we were all young, yeah? You can't blame an eighteen year old boy for being scared." Brooke bites her lip and sighs. She did blame him for a long time, but it was a tense time for everyone, and he took an out when he saw it. She really can't blame him for that, and really, she'd likely not have thrown herself into the line of work she did if she was distracted by a much more serious relationship.

"Maybe, but I really got the impression that she likes him."


It isn't as if she's not priced advertising, she just knows how much and how little money she has. To keep prices low for her clients she recycles a majority of her profit right back into the company. "Don't go overboard or anything. I'm sure word of mouth would be just as good."

Bridget finds this side of her sister to be rather adorable, no matter what the age. "Now I highly doubt you gave off a creepy vibe. You walked up to Sera in the middle of a restaurant, introduced yourself and still managed to have her join us. I think you under estimate yourself, even now."

Yet Brooke gets a look. "You're right. We're all young at some point, yet we all choose to grow up when the time calls for it. He just acted so much like a child, with being scared that he might actually have to be responsible. I won't forget that, Brooke. I won't. It isn't that I curse his name every day, either. He just is even more reason that people like me act the way we do."

There's a visible shudder at the thought of Sera liking Bryn. "Well, she is an adult, and hopefully he is, too. I won't care to warn him of the dangers of upsetting her." Bridget means that she's a known author and has fans.


"Witch's honor," Brooke says, making the same motion that she's watched Samantha Stevens make in Bewitched reruns. A little joke between sisters. "Social media, we'll set you up a decent Facebook group as well as a Twitter account where you can post links to consignment outfits so people get an idea of what you can do."

But that's not going to stop her from posting the ad as well.

"I gushed like a fangirl at Miss Roche." Wrinkling her nose, she exhales a sigh. "I think she came and sat with us out of pity."


"Gidge, it was twelve years ago. We were children. Hell, I was scared too, and if I'm being honest… as much as it killed me that he left? It was what I needed to focus on getting my life back in order."


The motion brings a chuckle. "I can do that. It's just different to think that I'm actually doing it, you know? Like people actually like my stuff, and not just friends and family." If she earns enough, a nice gift each month can be sent to their parents as well.

"Wait, what's this guy's name again? I don't know if I even caught it." She's been too busy tormenting her sister. "And if that were the case, would you have seen Sera again? No, I think she genuinely likes you, not that I blame her. You just have learned to go and do the things you want, no matter how nervous they make you. And sometimes? They pay off." Like scoring a date with Prince Charming.

The sketch book is closed and placed into a shoulder bag. She has the idea in her mind but wants the sketch just to double and triple check her work. "There's a difference, dear, and you know it. He could have left without doing so the way that he did. But that's my opinion. I don't know, maybe it was best for all of us in the end." It certainly helped Bridget not want a relationship ever. "I won't complain about where we are. I think things will only get better for you. I just hope that he's apologized since then."


"You're living the dream. Designing clothing and costumes in one of the biggest fashion cities in the world. Do you know how many people would kill to have this job?" Brooke hops off the counter and glances around the shop. Her head tilts to the right. Moving across the shop, she twists one of the racks around in the other direction and then leans beside it to the wall to adjust one of the pictures.

"There. That's a better representation."


"Kieran Collins. You've likely seen him in the tabloids with Sera Roche. I'm pretty sure that's who she was waiting for when we met her. They're really good friends."


She glances around the shop just as her sister does. The back of her hand wipes at her forehead, indicating that she's done a bit of work on the property today. "I don't know. I still feel like I should be back home helping out, like that's where I'm meant to be or something. But it was a little too tempting to follow you around and pester you."

Bridget packs up the rest of her belongings before blinking. Tabloids? She never reads tabloids, but she isn't going to say that. "Oh, okay." She honestly has no idea, but Google will come to her rescue! "Well, if they're good friends, I already think he's a good one to stick around. Even if just as friends." It's a better name than Bryn's, too, but Bridget also resents the B theme. "You'll have to let me know how date number two goes."


"Mum and daddy are fine, you know. I send a little bit back when I can, to help with the twins. With their education or whatever. Besides, they're only a few hours away. We should plan a trip for a weekend soon."

It wouldn't hurt to go home, hide in the stables, and just talk to the horses like she did when she was younger. See if her old journals are still hidden up in her secret place in the hayloft.

"I think so too, Gidget. There's just something about Kieran that literally makes me unable to think properly. It's a bit unnerving, really."


She can say that, but the worry will always be there. All the same, Bridget nods. "I actually think that would be a good idea. It would be good for us to do some work, and to see the family. Maybe if I clear out a bunch of stuff from my spare room and bring it here I can even invite someone to visit for a little while this summer. Just to stir things up."

Another chuckle comes from the older sibling. "Your luck, you've probably just met some sort of sorcerer." She doesn't believe it for a second, but she says it anyway. "If it's really that unnerving, I can always weave a little something into your dress to just make sure it's Cupid's error that is making your mind fuzzy and not anything else."


Brooke laughs, and then shakes her head. "You know I'd have been able to tell if he was, yeah." It's all in the eyes. That recognition would definitely be there one of the few times she managed to meet his eyes.

Weighing what her sister's saying, she frowns a little. "What else could it possibly be? It's not like he could've roofied me or anything. He never touched the drinks."

The frown dissipates quickly and she nods. "I think we should invite them all to the city for the long weekend in July. We can get them tickets for the shows we've worked on, and they can see the fireworks in the harbor. I don't think mum's been here except for Coven meetings."


The genuine concern of her younger sibling actually disturbs Bridget greatly. Not once does she let on, going to the point of keeping her motherly smile in place. "Well, now. I'm not really a master of all things magical, so I couldn't begin to tell you. We know what he isn't, and that's a good thing. He just might be a sincere man who gives you butterflies." At this point, even she's beginning to wonder, but again she says nothing. "I'll work my magic and we'll see what happens." Jersey Devil be damned.

"Oh, that's a brilliant idea!" She pretends to be making a mental list of the things that they could do, but she's not losing sight of her primary goal for her sister. "It would be nice for them to just relax. We can make sure the farm doesn't crumble without them there for a short spell. And I conveniently happen to be free in July." As if she ever takes any vacations.


"You're always so suspicious, Gidge. I'm not worried." Deep down, she might be. But only because Brooke still has no inkling why someone like Kieran Collins could ever possibly be interested in her. "Don't tire yourself out making the dress, okay? I don't want you spending the weekend in bed."


"I can call in a few favors back home. We can show them the city, and you're not running back to Lima if we're having them here. I can take the twins, and you can have mum and daddy."


The look given is one that seem so scream 'you have no idea'. "That's my job, dear. It always has been, and always will be." This is said with a soft smile and a reassuring tone. "I promise I won't go crazy, and I certainly won't wind up in bed all weekend long." She'll be working all weekend long, but seeing as how she enjoys her job it isn't considered work to her.

"You've got me. Okay, okay. I won't do anything silly like that." She'll do something, but not that. Bridget is what she will always be. "I think they'll like staying up here, and I think it's best that you take the twins. I'd likely mother them to death and they'd end up running home anyway." The back door is opened so that she can look at the space in the store room. "I can totally make this work. It'll be nice having my room back."

Bridget finds her keys before looking around the shop one last time. "I think this city has been kind to both of us."


"It's not your job, Gidget. It's mum's. You're not that much older than me, yeah? Stop mothering me and go find a life of your own," she teases lightly. Brooke wanders toward the door, waiting for her sister.

"Good. Don't go crazy. I'm a big girl, I can take care of myself if need be."

Brooke doesn't mind having the twins stay at her place. Granted, it's a small studio, but they can make if fun for them all while they're there. She can pick up a futon for the office, and she's got the pull-out in the living room.

"You can definitely make this work. I'll help you every step of the way too."


"Now come on. I think it's my turn to treat you to dinner. Italian okay with you?"

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