A Sliver of Hope


daphne_icon.gif lydia_icon.gif m_alex_icon.gif

Scene Title A Sliver of Hope
Synopsis A newcomer to New York finds a small reason to hope for a reunion with an old friend when she meets someone with his power. Alex offers to build robots and hamster wheels.
Date July 19, 2010

Central Park

Sunset in Central Park is cooler than sunset in the rest of the city, thanks to the lush green lawns and the trees that offer a little breeze now and then, to relieve those on the grounds of the heat and humidity if just for a few seconds. Just when the heat, still in the mid-80s even as night approaches, and the thick humidity gets to be almost too much, another refreshing wind comes along to cool. Streaks of gold and red glaze the western sky, the eastern already deepening into a dark periwinkle.

All in all, it's rather peaceful. Not far off, the bandstand is set up, an orchestra beginning to warm up while New Yorkers lay out blankets and beach towels to enjoy one of the famed Concerts Under the Stars. The musical fare for the evening is the Firebird Suite — whether there are any firebirds in the audience or not, who knows.

Daphne Millbrook is not here for tranquility — she's rushing through the park as a shortcut, a blur of blue and red and white.

Standing in the park wearing his black suit, unbuttoned with his black tie hanging in front of his white buttoned up shirt, Alex is watching the orchestra with silvery eyes having all sorts of epiphanies of how the instruments work together as one large machine. But then a blur passes by him, and it doesn't take much more than a second for him to piece together the likely source of the blur, so all he says is "Hey." a word just long enough to give her enough time to already be a good fifty feet away from him when he finishes the single syllable.

Unlike Daphne, Lydia Taylor sits on one of those blankets, her legs curled under her in her sleeveless blue-coloured sun dress, showing off her many tattoos— the ones on her arms, anyways. Her eyes are closed, the sound of the band warming up soothing enough, even if it's not quite as musical as the concert promises to be. Her lips curl into a kind of temporarily contented smile; serene, really. Her eyes flicker open in time to see the streak, her own attention piqued.

Quickly, she uncurls herself from her position, well aware she'll never catch up to the streaks of colour, but maybe, maybe she can get its attention, like Mortimer she greets the streaks, hope reflecting in her eyes, but her greeting is someone more rushed, and unusually demanding for the woman, "Hey!"

Hey? The blur does an almost comical u-turn, turning only because she recognized Alex — after all, the rustle and rush of her speeding by often garners a 'hey!' or 'watch it!' or 'WTF!' from the victims of her wake. Luckily most people aren't watching her but the orchestra and their friends and families — no cops that she can see to ask for her card. Of course she has a registration card, officer… It's just not real.

The blur slows and the colors merge into the solid form of Daphne Millbrook, white shirt, blue pants, white and red courier bag all coalescing into discernible objects. "Hey, Alex," she says with a smirk, tilting her platinum head, then glancing at where Lydia is sitting. Do I know you? is clearly the look on the speedster's face, though it's not too dirty a look.

Alex himself offers Lydia a curious glance, but just lets Daphne handle that as he focuses back on her. "Your shoes are finished, but I was wondering if I could ask a favor. You can say no, this isn't about the shoes, I'm only making a request. It's nothing illegal." Though he finds himself peering over at Lydia again. "Single friend of yours?"

At the u-turn, with bated breath, the long haired woman watches the speedster. Tension forming in her muscles, her heart nearly skips a beat— so much time looking to no avail.

The hope drains from Lydia's eyes substantially as the blur slows into Daphne's; it's not who she'd hoped. Crestfallen, she forces the smile that was previously easy on her lips, the serenity disappearing from it considerably into something somewhat colder and harder, and certainly more detached. She forces the smile further, trying to connect it to her eyes, but it never quite touches them.

A glance is given to the blanket she'd just abandoned, but she doesn't return to it, instead quietly, even-toned she speaks, "I'm sorry. I thought you were someone I knew." She manages a more genuine smile as she takes a step backwards towards the blanket.

"Legal is not always a requirement," Daphne says quietly to Mortimer, but she notices Lydia's melancholy reaction to her being — well, her. And not someone else. Curious, not having met someone with her speed, she holds up a finger to Mortimer, the universal "just a sec."

She moves closer to Lydia. "Someone else like me?" she asks, dark eyes widening. "I haven't met one. You know one?" she asks, jutting a chin toward Lydia. "Sorry to disappoint you, at any rate."

Alex just follows her, he's still at least curious about Daphne's new and potentially single friend, so he slips his hands into his pockets and watches. He doesn't bother turning his eyes off, he prefers seeing this way. "The right application of rockets and broken bones could possibly duplicate your speed, but the broken bones part would be very unpleasant."

Lydia gives a single nod to Daphne's question, her eyes softening at the comment and her entire demeanour changing under the circumstances and the question. And then still even-toned, she corrects, "I knew one. I haven't seen him for some time." Her lips are pressed together into a thin line as she glances from Daphne to Mortimer and back again.

"I really am sorry; I should've known," her lips curl into a slightly easier smile, "He wouldn't have worn such bright colours anyways— at least, I'd never seen him wear anything so bright." A hand is run over the tattoos on her right arm almost like it's cold outside, but it's far from that. She issues Alex that same tight-lipped smile and a small nod of acknowledgment.

Bright? Daphne thought she was low key today, for jury duty and all. She smirks a little and nods. "The world needs color. I provide it one streak at a time," she quips, before turning to wrinkle her nose at Alex. "I would imagine so, Quicksilver. But I'm not so egotistical to think there's only one of my power in the world. It'd be nice to think so, but." She cants her head at Lydia. "Can he go far? Like, to Europe, far?" Okay, she's a little competitive.

"We could build a vehicle based on the hamster wheel concept, your speed itself would power it and possibly double or triple your speed…" Alex seems very persistent when it comes to getting Daphne into a hamster wheel. But he finally decides to say something to Lydia, looking down at her. "It couldn't be very difficult to find him. I've been watching Daphne, and from what I've observed so far, speedsters have a very high metabolism, and they can't seem to stop moving. If you keep looking, it'll eventually be very obvious where your friend is."

"He could. I'd never seen anyone— aside from you today— move that fast," Lydia's tone quiets as her cheeks flush a pale crimson. She manages another tighter-lipped smile, "But that was years ago, and… I haven't seen him in some time." Her head is tilted slightly at Alex and she nods again, "I'm hope I'll see him again. He was family." Her eyes brighten slightly with that hope again as she issues the pair a very small shrug.

"If I tripled my speed, I'd end up changing the direction of the earth or something," Daphne says wryly, clearly joking. Or maybe end up in the past — though that thought doesn't enter her brain. Instead, she turns to regard Lydia again, frowning a little at the woman's clear sorrow.

"Well, if I see anyone, since I can keep up with him, I'll let him know you're looking for him. He got a name? You got a name? If he left you, you're better off without him, though. Freedom is grossly underrated," the once-caged bird declares.

"My name is Alex, by the way." He reaches down, offering his hand as hid tie sways in a slight breeze. "Not much in the way of speed, but I could probably make a very fast robot… the thought never occured to me before." His attention seems to already be going inward, pondering this new idea of a speedster robot.

The smile turns a little more reflective at Daphne's words. "Edgar. His name is Edgar. And please, if you see him, tell him Lydia is looking for him… and he didn't leave me. We were separated; the whole family was." She tucks a stray strand of hair behind her ear before accepting Mortimer's hand, "Lydia," she actually introduces herself with another small nod of her head. "And clearly I don't have anything in the way of speed. Robot or otherwise." The smile turns a little more reflective now.

"Edgar," the speedster repeats, to help commit the name to her sometimes flighty memory. "I'll see. I've never seen another me. And don't you dare put me out of work with super fast robots," she says, spinning to tilt her chin at Alex. "Either competition or to sell to people to keep people like me in line. Got it?" Her eyes narrow before she glances at Lydia again. "Family's important. Good luck. I'll keep an eye out."

At that, the orchestra conductor has lifted his arms, the musicians bringing their instruments to their lips or their chins, waiting for the first down-swing of the baton. "I should let you enjoy your concert. Oh. I guess he'd need to know where to find you, right? Lydia is looking is maybe not that useful."

"Well, I guess since you asked nicely." Alex grins and stands up straight to watch the orchestra, eyes intensely focused on the instruments. "An orchestra is amazing, like a machine, but without a physical connection. It's an interesting thing to behold with my eyes…"

"Not anymore," once upon a time it was easy to find her. Lydia takes another step back towards her blanket. "Just Ink tattoo parlor. I work there, an artist in training." A smile edges her lips again, this one quite genuine, moreso than the last. "Thank you…?" she pauses as she hasn't yet learned Daphne's name. "Really, I do appreciate it."

She takes another step back towards the blanket, not turning away quite yet, wanting to reflect her appreciation in her stance and gesture.

"You're welcome," Daphne says cheerfully, still not providing the name. "Just Ink. Got it. I'll tell him if I see him. And ask any blurs I see if they are Edgars."

The orchestra begins to play, and Daphne glances at the stage. "I should let you two enjoy the music. I need to go deliver something in … five minutes ago." With a wink, she waves, taking a slow step back that mirrors Lydia's before turning. One moment, she's there, the next she is not, a streak of red, white and blue that disappears around the bend of the path, out of sight. She forgot to ask Alex what job he had for her — perhaps not giving Lydia a lot of faith in her ability to remember her name. Or Edgar's. Or the tattoo parlor's.

But there is still a sliver of hope she just might.

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