Can't Shake This Feeling


f_april_icon.gif quinn_icon.gif

Scene Title Can't Shake This Feeling
Synopsis April finds acquaintances she didn't know she had virtually everywhere she goes. Meanwhile, the other person in Quinn's premonition really is real.
Date July 10, 2010

Central Park

Central Park has been, and remains, a key attraction in New York City, both for tourists and local residents. Though slightly smaller, approximately 100 acres at its southern end scarred by and still recovering from the explosion, the vast northern regions of the park remain intact.

An array of paths and tracks wind their way through stands of trees and swathes of grass, frequented by joggers, bikers, dog-walkers, and horsemen alike. Flowerbeds, tended gardens, and sheltered conservatories provide a wide array of colorful plants; the sheer size of the park, along with a designated wildlife sanctuary add a wide variety of fauna to the park's visitor list. Several ponds and lakes, as well as the massive Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir, break up the expanses of green and growing things. There are roads, for those who prefer to drive through; numerous playgrounds for children dot the landscape.

Many are the people who come to the Park - painters, birdwatchers, musicians, and rock climbers. Others come for the shows; the New York Shakespeare Festival at the Delacorte Theater, the annual outdoor concert of the New York Philharmonic on the Great Lawn, the summer performances of the Metropolitan Opera, and many other smaller performing groups besides. They come to ice-skate on the rink, to ride on the Central Park Carousel, to view the many, many statues scattered about the park.

Some of the southern end of the park remains buried beneath rubble. Some of it still looks worn and torn, struggling to come back from the edge of destruction despite everything the crews of landscapers can do. The Wollman Rink has not been rebuilt; the Central Park Wildlife Center remains very much a work in progress, but is not wholly a loss. Someday, this portion of Central Park just might be restored fully to its prior state.

The cloudy day wasn't exactly what Quinn had been hoping for when she'd left Gun Hill this morning, but it ultimately was proving to be rather nice — at the very least, it helping to turn down the heat a little — 27 degrees was something (according to the app on her phone) was something she could at least tolerate being out in, and her scooter helped to make it feel that much cooler.

Her goal this morning was Central Park, one her favourite places to go for inspiration. Not to mention she desperately needed to get out of the house on her own, she'd gotten in a terrible, terrible habit of doing very little besides spending at work, spending time at Gun Hill, or being out with Ygraine — and it wasn't that she disliked any of these things, but it was nice to get out on her own every now and then.

Finding a spot in the park hadn't been hard, she had a few places she liked to go in particular. Her goal this morning was to try and finish writing a song she'd been working on for some time, an upbeat and quick, somewhat poppy piece, though it had a distinctly different sound on her acoustic than it does on her electric. Red acoustic slung over her knee and a notebook and pen sitting at her side, she sets to playing, stopping often at first as she figures out exactly what works and what the next few bars of music will be. Every now and then, someone stops to watch her and listen, but once noticed, they often wander off, much to Quinn's annoyance. Still, she's enjoying herself, being out in the open and playing.

Today being not a work day, April is wearing a rose-colored shirt and blue denim shorts; it's a nice change. Just wearing shorts is pleasant, even if it's cooled down considerably from the previous heat wave. Thinking about that helps her pretend she isn't fretting about other things. Walking down a path with her hands tucked halfway into her pockets, she watches the greenery of the park march slowly past with idle disinterest; tuning out the sounds of joggers and dog-walkers and playing kids that occasionally intrude, it takes a while for the snatches of interrupted melody to register as music. April looks for the source in momentary curiosity, slowing in her walk to consider the younger woman with the guitar. And the tune she — isn't — playing.

For the moment, Quinn seems pretty caught up in her music, playing bits of melody and the stopping with either a shake of her head or an excited nod. The music really only stops for more than a moment when she pulls up her notebook and looks over it for a moment, and sets to playing the entirety of what she has completed — still only a relatively short piece, but one that sounds upbeat, and marked with at least two dramatic tempo shifts. It's near the end that she finally looks up and spots the woman watching her, if only for a moment. Looking back at her guitar for a moment, Quinn motions to the woman, a grin on her face. "Hey! What do you think?" she asks the stranger rather excitedly. She's too distracted to really get a good look at April's face, she's just excited that someone took interest in her playing.

April looks rather taken aback as she's pounced upon (figuratively) by the musician. "Ah — it's… very cheerful," the older woman temporizes, reaching up to push strands of dark hair back in a self-conscious fashion. Obviously she didn't expect to be noted — much less regarded so excitedly. Letting her hands fall to her sides, she smiles politely at Quinn, glancing towards the notebook. "You wrote it?"

Almost immediately, Quinn's paper and pen are grabbed, and a note written at the top of the page is scrawled, visible to be "Cheery! Mission accomplished~ :D". "Yeah, I wrote it," Quinn responds with a tone to match her note, looking up at the woman — and as soon as she does, just the strangest sense of déjà vu or something like it washes over her — a sense of recognition. "Huh," Quinn intones, a curious tone in her voice, head tilting at April. "Do you, um, like it? I mean, not to bother. I'm trying to write somethin' new…" Appraising eyes move up and down April, and for once it's more out of curiosity than anything else.

The shift in Quinn's scrutiny of her causes April to lean back a bit, just slightly, her weight resting heavily on her heels. It's more a subconscious act than a deliberate one, and she gives the musician's query due consideration anyway. "Well, I'm… not entirely sure it's to my taste? But it seems fine; I mean, it's not bad," the woman concludes, looking slightly askance at her companion as if wondering whether that's an okay answer.

Quinn gives a slow nod at April's assessment, lifting her guitar a bit so she can cross her legs, head still tilted. "Fair 'nough," she says with a smile, though almost immediately furrowing her brow. That lingering feeling will just not go away, and Quinn really feels like she's forgotten something important. A few beats of silence pass, and she exhales rather sharply. "So, um, I don't mean t' be rude, but do I know you from somewhere?"

April lifts her chin slightly, looking sidelong at Quinn; she takes a half-step backwards. "I don't think so," the woman replies, her hands resting at her sides, fingers loosely curled. "In fact," she continues, with a moment's excessive honesty, "I sure hope not. You're the second in —" There's more that could be said on that subject, but April belatedly realizes her mouth is running and it should be caught. Shaking her head, loose hair flying with the motion, she doesn't say anything more, green eyes narrowing as she assesses Quinn with a far more critical eye than before. And inches another half-step back, or perhaps brings her feet back into line, depending on perspective.

"Second wha?" Quinn remarks, even as she hops up from her seat, her guitar hanging across her by its strap as her hands move to her hips, curiosity intensified for a moment, before fading to a softer expression. She actually feels kinda bad now, wrinkling her nose at April with an apologetic smile.

Quinn says, "Look, I'm sorry, I didn't mean t' be rude, I just can't shake this feelin'…" Turning down to the bench, to pick up her notebook results brings a momentary pause, and a blink as she clearly sees April's face in her mind's eye, though dirtied and—

That's it.

Quinn somewhat suddenly straights, snapping a finger, pointing it at April. "I think I do kinda know you," she remarks with an unintentional ominous quality.

April's right hand creeps up before her torso, fingers nearly straight and slightly spread apart. She doesn't look particularly swayed by Quinn's apology, pressing her lips together and just watching the young woman. If she had hackles, they'd probably be standing on end when the musician declares victory over elusive recollections. "I'm pretty sure I don't know you," April states decisively, not quite able to ask why Quinn thinks she knows the older woman. She's not at all sure she wants to know.

Quinn's expression downturns into a frown, scratching the back of her head nervously. "I— um, I really am sorry, I just—" She wrinkles her nose and sighs. "You remember the things a month ago, right? I… I think you helped me in mine. Is all." She exhales again, hand falling to grip her arm. "I'm sorry," she repeats, plopping back down on the bench. She hadn't meant to make anyone feel so uncomfortable.

The things. April is quiet for a long, long time. Slowly, her hand falls, and she looks away from Quinn, watching a stray pigeon pick through the grass for anything remotely edible. On the positive side, for all that she still seems uneasy, she doesn't hightail it away from the musician. "I…" she begins softly, "you weren't in mine." April doesn't look at Quinn except from the edges of her vision. "Tell me— ?"

"Um…" The guitar is pulled up from around Quinn's neck, turned an placed back on the bench inside of its case. When she turns back, she shrugs. "It was kinda like— I was in some place, and it was burnin' up or somethin', I was running and I could see fire. Lots of it." Hand moves to the back of her neck, rubbing as Quinn's gaze moves down to the ground. "I kinda like fell, real hard. It sounded like somethin' over me was about to break, but you — I think you, stepped in and did something. Told me t' get out while you could hold it." She pauses, looking back up. "Look, I really am sorry if I weirded you out or somethin'."

Burning up. April closes her eyes, drawing in a slow, deep breath. She shakes her head in response to Quinn's apology, looking anywhere but at the sitting musician. Only the subject isn't going to disappear that easily. "Was…" She pauses, swallows, tries again, voice quiet. "Was anyone else there?" the woman asks, glancing over to Quinn, unsure whether she should hope for a yes or a no. The 'you did something' part, April quietly hopes will get shoved under a mental rug.

Quinn tilts her head again, and then shakes it. "Not that I saw, no. I kinda had blinders the entire time, you know? But I didn't really saw anyone with me, an' I didn't see anyone with you." A pause, and she gives a hand smile. "I think you had m' violin too, after I dropped it."

April nods slowly, then breathes out a sigh. Crouching down to sit on her heels, arms folded over her knees, the older woman looks up at the younger with a distinct lack of confidence in her expression. "Everyone's saying those — those visions. They'll happen. Do you — do you think so?"

"Dunno," Quinn states simply, shrugging. "I'd rather hope not, I don't much feel like being in a fire or— I think breakin' my arm. Really, the idea seems kind of crazy." She chuckles, looking at April with a warm expression. "A few people I know seem t' think they could be. It'd be really weird if they are, but these days…" She quirks her lips, shrugging again. "If they are, I'm hopin' it's like Doctor Who an' it's not all, like… determined." Her words lack eloquence, but she hopes her point is getting across.

"Yeah," April agrees. She falls quiet again, mulling over the issue of visions — and, probably, whatever it was that she herself saw. Just sits that for a while, until the woman decides running her mind in circles gets her nowhere. Green eyes flicker back to Quinn, and she smiles ruefully. "Never did get your name. I guess that'd be only proper. I'm April."

With that, Quinn leans forward a bit, offering a hand. "Quinn. Robyn Quinn. Pleasure t' meet you, April." She smiles, warm and wide, giving a small nod. "I… have t' admit, I didn't expect t' actually ever meet you. I wasn't even sure you were real, given… you know."

Dropping one knee for balance sake, April reaches over to shake Quinn's hand. "Yeah. It's a common hazard." Her rueful smile doesn't quite reach her eyes. Straightening, the woman tucks her hair behind her ears and glances at the watch on her wrist. "I should — go. Good luck with your songs, Quinn."

Quinn gives a slow nod, not letting her smile fade, trying to remain comforting to someone she believes rather anxious or nervous. She wasn't sure what she mean, what, being real's an issue? Eh. Quinn shrugs again, a hand reaching over to her notebook and pulling it close. "Alright. I wouldn't mind talking again sometime, though. Hopefully, if we do see each other again, April…" A friendly smirk crosses her face. "Hopefully, it's under good circumstances."

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