"Hey, MISS QUINZEL! I know you're in there!"
The psychiatrist groaned quietly. The oily voice of Daniel Crowley, her landlord, was sounding from behind the front door of her apartment and she just knew she couldn't ignore it. Draining the rest of her cup, she got up and in bare feet padded towards the door to open it.
Crowley, a tall stocky gentleman who'd recently taken over ownership of the block of flats, smiled unpleasantly as she opened the door. "Glad to see you can grace me with your presence."
"What can I do for you, Mister Crowley?" Harleen asked, attempting a polite smile. "I do believe I slipped the cheque for this month's rent under your door this morning."
"That you did," he replied cheerfully, obviously pleased at the thought of the money. "but I'm here to offer you a head's up. Rent's going up next month by a one fifty starting next month."
Harleen gaped. She was already paying six hundred, and barely surviving. But nearly eight hundred dollars a month? There was no way she was going to be able to afford that, and yet she wanted to stay. This apartment was convieniently placed, and she couldn't imagine finding someplace else that would be quite the same.
"Oh." was all she could manage for the moment.
"I'll see you with your cheque on time next month." Crowley said, before she could protest.
"Sure thing, Mister Crowley." Harleen replied with a falsely cheerful smile. She just managed not to slam the door.
Sitting back down at the table, she sighed. There was no question that she wasn't going to be able to continue living here on her salary from next month. But neither did she expect she'd find somewhere else if she did move out. Aside from not wanting to leave, there was also the fact that there weren't many other decent places that she'd be able to afford. She certainly didn't want to end up in the Narrows.
Something would have to be done, she thought, but not now.
Deciding to take her mind off the quandary with some work, she got up and moved toward her study. If you could call it a study. It housed her laptop and a desk, but not much else. Most of the psychiatrist's paperwork was housed at her office in Arkham, and the books and journals on psychiatric theory that she'd accumulated over the years had become towers in the living room, piled up as prospective reading in front of the tv or over dinner.
What was the point of paying for a room that she barely used, she wondered, seating herself at the desk and starting up her laptop. And it was then that the thought hit her. Why not split the rent, and lease this room to another person? Her laptop could used elsewhere, heck, that was the point of it!
When the laptop had finished loading, she opened her word processor, and began to think up an appropriate advertisement to place in the Globe for a roommate...