Black Horse Riding



Scene Title Black Horse Riding
Synopsis Soleil Remi Davignon leaves her mark.
Date May 20, 2018

The streets of Elmhurst

It's late. The streetlamps should be aglow, but rolling blackouts means that darkness crowds the buildings, that the windows of squat, matchstick box red brick residences are dim with candle light, and shadows presses in on either side of Remi's car as she makes her way home. Her journey takes her through Elmhurst, veining a direct route from the Raytech NYCSZ Branch Office through to her residence in Bay Ridge. There are next to no other cars on the roads. To her left, a truck marked by the military peace, rolls on by in near silence. Her radio sputters on dodgy frequencies.

New York City, even these quieter areas, used to be a very different place.

As she peels onto the next street of almost identical rows of little brick buildings, she'll see in her rearview the single, cylopsian eye of a motorcycle's headlight as the vehicle comes bumping down off the curb, sliding into the flow of her wake. It's at some distance, almost indiscernible in the darkness. What little light there is reflects off the driver's visor, glimmering orange.

Up ahead, a bicycle, its rider wearing high-vis, coming down on Remi's left like a dart through the darkness. No other traffic ahead, and the traffic lights further beyond are glowing brilliant green.

It's been a long day at work, managing the public relations for Raytech, and Soleil Davignon is rather tired. Despite the fact that she is eager to be at home, embracing her husband and children, Remi always was a rather careful driver — tonight is no different. She takes the streets at a decently lazy pace, eyes roving about as she makes her way home. It's more difficult to tune out her ability when she's behind the wheel, so the telepath has her focus narrowed to the width of the road and a good twenty feet ahead and behind her. It's always easier to drive safe when you know what the people around you are doing.

Blue eyes glance to the rearview mirror, then to the bicyclist ahead, but otherwise stay focused on the road. Idly, she reaches out, setting the radio to 'seek', so it will scan through frequencies and stop when it finds one with a decent enough signal.

The cyclist disappears from view, a flicker of reflective light in the mirror, gone as swift as a minnow. One building running off its own generator spills yellow light out onto the street, cutting shadows across Remi's face as she checks her radio's settings. A brief flicker of telepathic activity of life within the building — a dance class, a pulsing beat shared by ten, fifteen synchronised minds set on their task, filters into the edges of her range where the music does not.

And then another sound. The growl of an engine.

Looking back up, she'll see the motorcycle come nearer, but maintaining a pace beyond the range she's currently set her power. The vehicle itself is nothing special, a little dirty, a little loud, at odds with the rider who wears a full suit of some kind, like rider's leather, or lightweight armoring. The helmet is sleek and black and utterly obscuring, but she sees, now, that instead of just reflections from whatever lights flicker on the dark street, lights glow from within that dark visor in the form of orange lights.

Remi’s blue eyes briefly glance toward the building, then back toward the road, a faint smile on her face. She loves hearing dance classes — it brings back reminders of her days teaching dance, and reminds her that she might still enjoy doing it again. She is looking into that nice building, and it has a nice room that could be perfect for another dance studio.

The girls would love it, too — Victoria is already a little prodigy in her dance classes, and while Lisette is only one, she seems to be following in her mother’s footsteps. What better to foster that love of dance than making part of her space into a studio?

Her gaze flicks up to the motorcycle in the rearview mirror, but she takes the distance that the person is going as them not being in any rush like her, and so she turns her attention back to the road, idly humming and singing a few lines from ‘Non, je ne regrette rien’ by Edith Piaf.

There's a reason for the distance.

Movement catches her eye, and she'll see the rider reach up and back, removing something that had been strapped at their shoulders. What it is, specifically, cannot be discerned at this distance, and in the few moments she has at her disposal, but context cues connect together like puzzle pieces enough for her to think the word gun. It is shaped like one, and held like one, now, and by the time her power reaches out to feel the mind hidden behind the black glass of their visor, the glowing orange lights within, all its doing is calculating things like speed and distance and

there's a crucial second in which she has a moment to act

but something has already happened. A wisp of white smoke, something too swift to see aimed at her back wheels, before the world heaves around her. Her control is severed like an axe was taken to it as the Land Rover she was driving becomes a cage of steel and fire and glass, flung forwards as the back end lifts up off the road from a roar of explosive fire. The windshield shatters as the nose of the truck strikes the ground, crumples, flips sideways, slams roof-first into a dark storefront. And stops.

Stillness and silence is as shocking as the explosion itself, clamping down cold on Remi's senses as darkness begins to encroach on her vision.

“Non, rien de rien, non, je ne regrette rien,” Remi sings quietly as she drives — she could probably pull the song up on her phone and play it over the speakers, but that would be dangerous while driving — and sometimes, one just wants to sing.

Blue eyes flit up to the rearview mirror as the figure pulls out the gun. At first, she thinks it peculiar, and then the realization slowly dawns upon her. Then, she’s reaching out with her ability, trying to discern what’s happening, and then…

And then, she’s unleashing one of those awful telepathic screeches of hers, even as the figure is pulling the trigger, even as the world suddenly tumbles into chaos. White knuckled hands cling to the steering wheel, even as the airbags deploy, even as the damage becomes too much for the safety measures to be effective.

The scream only stops when the vehicle comes to a stop, as Remi’s mind struggles to comprehend what is happening. Her mind is all that she has right now, and she reaches out with it desperately, struggling to find out what is happening…and why.

Why won’t she be able to go home to her daughters and husband tonight?

The scream hits the rider.

They're flung sideways by the sheer force of it, breaking through any defenses they might have attempted to mount like sound shattering glass. The motorcycle goes spinning out from beneath them with a scream of metal on concrete, and the armored figure is thrown, slamming onto the street, rolling at great velocity until they stop. Gloved hand slamming into the road. Lying still, as the last of that psychic pain fades.

And standing. That helmeted head tips to the side, visor turned to the car. Listening. Or looking, even if from here, all they can see is the undercarriage, the licks of flame and haze of smoke rising. Around the scene, the street has remained quiet and empty. Afraid. No doubt, alarms are being carried out through an invisible network that will see this place become busy with activity, but for now, civilians known to keep well away from the windows when they can.

The rider doesn't have much time to finish this.

Remi, in pain, confused, desperate, the world broken around her, seeking answers through the only means still available to her. Thoughts of an abstract kind come back to her, lacking reason and cause, but articulating doom. The telepath is going to die. Where she might expect anger or hatred or bloodlust, there is none. These thoughts are cold blooded, as efficient as a butcher. Why, she asks. Because they were given a task.

She sees it, one last time. The world is tipped strange, her sense of up and down completely out of order as the black figure and their strange spider-like orange eyes seems to walk sideways into her perception, barely visible through the web-like shattering of glass of her windshield, and the blood in her eyes.


The rapport of automatic gunfire fills the road, but she only hears it like a roll of thunder as piercing rounds carve through her body. The lights go out. Sirens have begun to wail like the baying of wolves.

There isn’t much time for Remi, either. Her mind reaches out, digging in with every last bit of strength that Remi has, pulling any information about her attacker out that she can manage. It’s vague, and it’s confusing, and she can only hope that whoever is a recipient of this last desperate call for help will assist. She’s not going to survive this — she already knows that. She’ll not get to go home and hug her children after all, which is all that she wants right now.

So she will leave what she can so her little girls can have the justice they deserve, losing their mother at such an early age. Little Lisette…will Lisette even remember her? Tori will remember her, vaguely. Both of them will grow up without her. And Jaiden…Jaiden will be destroyed by the loss of another love. Graeme…who knows how he’ll respond.

The saddest part about dying is thinking about those you will leave behind.

With the last of her strength, the telepath flings information into the minds that she has within her range, bits and pieces exploding out from her mind like the bomb that took out her fancy Land Rover. Aquila is the only name she can pull. A grimy, somewhat vague reflection of a man shaving in a mirror. A nearly endless stretch of road, roaming off through the desert, ripples of heat waving off the surface of the asphalt. The bare, attractive legs of a woman, with the hands of Remi’s murderer upon them as morning light filters through a window. A door, barred shut.

Various minds receive various bits of information, all laced with the desperate plea of the dying telepath to help, to share.

To help her little girls get the justice they need.

In that moment of that surge of telepathic energy, the rider twitches, like a predator catching a sound they can't identify. They hold very still, as if waiting for something else to happen, barely breathing, but nothing comes. Those glowing eyes once again put Remi in their sights, before they lower their gun.

The sound of boot falls, crunching over broken glass. The sound of a motorcycle scraped up from where it landed. The sound of it choking to life with a kick.

And then, a final growl of engine, the rider leaves this site of death to be picked clean by others.

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