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The Alien Stipulation

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After fifteen minutes of leniency—which Sheldon thought quite generous given the frequency of which Penny made habit to create inane distractions—he had reached his absolute maximum limit of obtuseness.

“I wore the blush one to my last audition and that didn’t turn out so great.” Penny was sorting through her seemingly limitless choices of nail polishes in search of something “lucky.” (Sheldon had already explained to her that there was absolutely no such thing as luck. Furthermore, wearing a particular item or following a certain routine does not and will not ever guarantee success—much less success in her acting career [of which there did not really seem to be any proof as to actually existing].)

“Were we not discussing the challenge of ridding my apartment of Priya?” Sheldon gave Penny a look of sheer frustration as she barely flicked her gaze up at him before returning her attention to the polishes. (The fact that Penny did not seem to care about keeping eye contact during conversation had always been a small irritation, among the masses, that Sheldon had relinquished to silence seeing as his best friend was a person who was only able to hold eye contact for an average of ten minutes—anything to keep the peace.) “She keeps threatening me with my own roommate agreement if I don’t relinquish control over the television remote. How am I supposed to watch Ancient Aliens if she is forcing everyone to watch Kloe and Lamar? Honestly, how can a person so educated watch such drivel?”

With a huff, Penny leaned back against the couch and points at him, bottle of polish in hand. “First of all, you came pouting over here after I was already thinking about painting my toenails. And B) Priya and Leonard are dating. Last time, you were upset that your friends weren’t hanging out at your apartment. Now that Leonard has started staying home more with Priya, you aren’t happy.” She gently tossed the small glass bottle back into the plastic tub with its mates. “I suggest either getting the heck over your hatred of all things gossipy or phone home.”

A twitch over Sheldon’s eye was the only response for several seconds as he attempted to place, in order, the offensiveness of Penny’s insults and grammatical errors. She simply smiled that simpering smile of her, obviously taking pleasure in the affects of her wording. He finally hunched over slightly, brows knitted tightly in derision. “Secondly. Or, reversely, A. You cannot follow-up a first with a B. Also, I do not pout.

“As for ‘getting over it,’ I refuse to relinquish my right in determining the television routine. I was here first.”

She patted the seat beside her, “Sweetie, just sit down. You can watch your Old Martians or whatever here.” The bemused smile that played on Penny’s lips was a bit unnerving—it was almost as if she thought she was winning though what she thought she was winning, Sheldon could not imagine.

“Ancient Aliens.”

Penny slammed the remote into Sheldon’s chest. “Don’t know. Don’t care. But if you are going to stay there are two conditions.”

“Excuse me, but you have already delivered the invitation, of which I have already accepted. You cannot implement conditions after the fact.” He grasped the television remote tightly in had, cradling like one of his pristine Star Trek collector items (such as Mirror, Mirror Spock action figure). Having already been temporarily banned from his television, thusly being temporarily evicted from his living room, Sheldon realized that he was not in a position to totally deny Penny her conditions. Besides, she was arching that eyebrow—which meant if he tried, he would be out on the street with no television options at all. Watching episodes on his cell phone is not an acceptable replacement.

“Fine, go back to the Kardashians. I’ll be better off without your chitter chatter anyway.” Penny pulled the tote of polishes into her lap, ignoring Sheldon’s existence.

He hedged, “Out of curiosity, what would those two conditions have been?”

She grinned brightly for a moment before smoothing out her features. “You have to help me pick my nail polish and you can’t make it a habit of watching your science-y, kookoo stuff over here. We are friends and I am doing you a favor.”

Taking a few seconds to consider her stipulations, Sheldon found them no more intolerable than he would if he had stayed at home and watched the mockumentary masquerading as “reality TV.” “I accept to your terms, Penny.”

Penny smiled with satisfaction and set the tote between them.