POD: Set in the future
|Type of Appearance:||Direct|
Susan Ruppelt was a PhD candidate at University of California, Los Angeles specializing in the Holy Roman Empire. She met and began dating Bryce Miller when she was moving into the TA office he was vacating. Her preparations for her oral examination were driving her crazy and she turned to Miller for comfort. He had gone through the same thing several years previously and assured her that feeling upset beforehand was normal and that her chairperson wouldn't let her go up for examination until she was ready.
When the Yellowstone Supervolcano erupted, Miller was on a flight from Chicago to Los Angeles when his flight was forced to ditch near Lincoln, Nebraska. He was marooned there until the air cleared enough of ash to allow flights once more. He was met at the airport by Ruppelt who had invited his mother along. Mrs. Miller invited Bryce and Susan for supper and while Bryce wanted to get intimate with Susan, he didn't want to hurt his mother's feelings and so accepted the dinner invitation.
After Miller got his degree, Ruppelt was supportive of his job hunting. While disappointed for his sake in that he wasn't doing what he wanted, she was glad he got the job at the Department of Water and Power. In the mean time, she continued to work on her doctorate on the eleventh-century Holy Roman Empire and work as a T.A. During that quarter, she helped students learn about The Epic of Gilgamesh
Ruppelt also supported Miller's decision to take a teaching job at Junipero High School in the San Fernando Valley even though it meant he needed to move there. She also accepted his marriage proposal, after some hesitation. She continued working on her dissertation now more by e-mail and telephone rather than in person.
The big step came when Miller received an offer of Assistant Professor at Wayne State College in Wayne, Nebraska. After some discussion, Miller took the job and Ruppelt moved with him to Wayne. This was even more isolated for her and the internet was the only way she could continue her studies. Not only did it allow her to communicate with her adviser but it was also the only way she could obtain research materials since the Wayne State College library was severely limited.