A Little More Psycho Than Expected


elisabeth2_icon.gif noriko_icon.gif

Scene Title A Little More Psycho Than Expected
Synopsis Liz learns more than she wanted to know about Noriko — enough to make her worry.
Date Jan 13, 2009

USS George Washington, Mess Hall

Sitting in the mess hall, Elisabeth has the look of someone run ragged. She told one of the marines on board that she needed to be able to pass the USMC physical fitness tests…. maybe that was a mistake. For the past week, she has let the man kick her ass. It's a good kind of tired, though — not the kind of exhaustion that will take more than a good night's sleep to get over. She needs to be sharp when they make landfall, so she'll take it easy the day before that. For the moment, though, she wants to see if she can know what to expect — and the Marines have a far more stringent set of requirements than the Navy (except for SEALs, of which there are none aboard that she knows of). She has a tray in front of her loaded with eggs and toast, some bacon, and milk. Proteins and carbs are important in the weather they're going to be facing.

Noriko slips into the Mess Hall, the asian looking around for a moment or three, eyes considering each person they land on. When they find Elisabeth, she smiles faintly, knowing her, and feeling somewhat comfortable in her presence. Moving towards the table, she slides into a seat, "Hey," she says, the hydrokinetic has no food in front of her.

Looking up, Elisabeth nods slightly. Noriko's not someone she knows well enough she thinks. Her expression is thoughtful. "Hey yourself. How you holding up, lady?" She sets her fork down after taking a last bite, pushing the tray away to enjoy the cup of coffee that also sits there.

Noriko shrugs her shoulders a little and replies, "Holding." She offers a smile, even while that internal battle is always fought, as she tries to keep her urges at bay. Not letting a hint of it show on her face.

Tilting her head, Elisabeth says candidly, "I've never gone as far undercover as you have, but I have a friend that has. When he came in off Staten, he couldn't quite seem to find his way back." Her tone is soft. "He's never told me exactly what he did out there that was so bad… I'm assuming he did whatever he had to do to fit in and make them believe his cover. It was a bad guy he was playing." She considers and says softly, "I think part of him may never come all the way back." Her blue eyes focus on Candy. "The trick with coming back in is to extricate yourself from the cover. It can be done. It just … takes some time. I'm sorry for what you went through."

Noriko shrugs her shoulders and replies, "I would not say that being undercover really put me in the position I am in. No… its a combination of things. From Moab, to deep cover, to Rasoul. It all contributed just a little in breaking me further. Not, that I have a skewed view of reality." No, that will come later.

"You worry me," Elisabeth says honestly. "The things that have happened to you, the things you've seen…. it worries me that… if push comes to shove, you won't have my friends' backs." She doesn't drop her gaze. "Are you going to be able to hold it together long enough?"

Noriko looks at Liz for a couple of moments while she considers that question. "I don't see why I shouldn't hold it together. As long as I am not negated, I should be able to keep control of myself."

For a long moment, she studies the other woman. And then Elisabeth nods. "Note to self: make sure Noriko not negated." She smiles a bit, accepting the answer. There's little else she can do, but it seems to make her feel better that Noriko at least gave the question some thought before simply answering 'of course.' She glances around the mess hall briefly, sipping her coffee. When her eyes come back, she asks, "Is there anything I can do for you? This run's for all the marbles… If there's something I can do to help you out, I will."

Noriko shakes her head, "No, I don't think there is much to be done for me at all, Elisabeth. I have the feeling that it may just be too late for someone to come by and make it all go away." She looks out the hall for a couple of moments, seeming to look into the distance.

"In point of fact," Elisabeth says quietly, "It's not. If taking all of those horrid things away would help you…. there is someone aboard who can do it. Talk to Claire about it." She studies Noriko quietly. "I'm not normally an advocate of losing experiences. Even bad ones. But sometimes…. just sometimes… it can be worth doing. If not knowing the things you know will help you find peace when this is done… maybe it's worth looking into." She shrugs a little. "Just a thought."

Noriko smiles a little before she says, "Do you know all the time that will have to be forgotten to even dream about getting me helped? I would not know you, or anyone else on this boat anymore. You all would be completely new people to me, whose only basis of knowledge of each other is what happened to us here. How would you be able to talk to me on the street, without alluding to this?"

"Maybe we wouldn't be able to talk to you on the street," Elisabeth says quietly. "And maybe no one but us will ever remember that you helped save the planet for the…. I don't know, like fifth time we've had to keep these assholes from blowing it up." She sounds a little disgusted, and she clearly exaggerating just a little. "The question would be more…. who do you think you'll be without those memories? Do you honestly believe that you would be a happier person? Or do you think you can recover from all that you've seen?" She smiles a little. "Personally…. I think you're far stronger than you're giving yourself credit for. You've survived, Noriko. In spite of it all, you're not sitting in a mental asylum gibbering and pissing on yourself. I think you have it in you to take the horrifying things you've seen and turn it around… to make yourself and the world around you a better place when we go back. But the choice exists. You can let it break you…. or you can let it hone you."

Noriko shakes her head lightly before she replies, "I should be gibbering and pissing myself in a mental asylum, Elisabeth. By all rights, Sarisa had it correct when she said that I shouldn't be going here. But I am too stubborn to let those of you who I have become friends, maybe, and those who are my friend's from going in here with out me. I would not be able to forgive myself, if I left, and something happened to you all with out me being there and trying to prevent it." She shrugs her shoulders a little and then asks, "Do you know of any good asylums? By the way? Might go around looking for them. When I'm back in New York."

There's a pause as Liz considers. And then she smiles faintly. "Insane people don't wonder if they're insane. They know that the problem is everyone else in the world. No matter what Kershner thinks of your presence here — sometimes saving the world has a way of making even the most horrific of experiences seem… not quite as traumatic in comparison." She looks down at her coffee. "God knows, I've had fewer nightmares since I came on board here than I've had in months."

Noriko smiles a little and then responds, "Lucky you." She shrugs her shoulders a bit, she hasn't spoken to anyone about her bit of a vision, and she still remains silent about it.

Elisabeth shrugs. "Lucky me," she agrees softly. "Kind of a sad commentary, honestly. Not sure I really wanted to know worse than Doug and his friends. Rasoul…. kinda puts them in perspective." She looks up, her mouth quirking slightly. "Kinda hard to have nightmares about the old stuff when newer stuff keeps taking its place, yeah?"

Noriko nods her head a little and says, "Yeah, I'm gonna have to agree with that." She shrugs her shoulders and offers a smile, before looking out over the cafeteria and saying, "Just… gotta keep going on, I suppose."

The soft laugh from Elisabeth is part sympathy and part just agreement. "Yeah." She goes quiet again. "What do you want to do when you get back, Noriko? I mean…. if you could walk back into New York and pretend everything was normal…. what would you be doing with yourself?"

Noriko looks at Liz, and then says, "Truthfully? I don't know. But, I guess I'd like to see about moving in with my girlfriend and just being a stay-at-home girl for a long while."

"So do it," Elisabeth offers. "Go home… tell your girl that you missed her. That you're kinda fucked up in the head in some pretty major ways right now. That you need her … just to understand. And …. just exist." She plays with her coffee cup a bit, rolling it between her hands. "Maybe you'll find you're not quite as broken as you fear."

Noriko looks at Elisabeth and smiles tightly before she replies, "I spend every waking moment, Elisabeth, denying the voice in my head that I should just kill everyone. I think that is as broken as you can get."

Mmm…. sounds to Liz like Noriko needs the good medications. The information makes her tense slightly, since that answer was not the answer she was expecting. "No… as broken as you can get would be doing it," she opines quietly. And then sighs. "However, that said, it definitely sounds more broken than an ex-cop can help with."

Noriko smiles lightly before she says, "Its something to deal with, I suppose. Not, that I have any real… desire to follow through with that. It is just… something I need to deal with."

Elisabeth nods slightly. "I know a good shrink," she offers. "She helped me through a lot of the PTSD issues that came after Danko's goons grabbed me."

"So do I," Noriko says, beofre giggling lightly, "She's my girlfriend."

There's a chuckle. "Well, there you have it, then." Elisabeth is glad that Noriko has someone who might be able to see if she snaps.

Noriko grins a little and then shrugs her shoulders before saying, "I should probably go get some sleep, I think. Haven't slept yet…" With that, Noriko stands to start heading towards the bunks.

"Sleep well," Liz offers. And goes back to nursing her coffee.

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