Chemical Reaction


maya_icon.gif saul_icon.gif

Scene Title Cheimcal Reaction
Synopsis On a simple morning out on the city, Maya Herrera discovers that kindred aren't as far away as they seem.
Date September 23, 2009

The Bronx

New York City has changed greatly in just three years time, in a way it's a microcosm of the way the world has begun to change into some unrecognizable form in the wake of what happened on November 8th. Portions of the city still bear some semblance of familiar landmarks, some not cauterized by nuclear fire or torn down in the name of reconstruction or progress. One small consolation to the people of New York City, is that Yankee Stadium somehow managed to survive the destruction of midtown, even if it was dealt a crippling blow to its infrastructure.

Times change, the world changes, cities change and life somehow manages to go on. But in the post-bomb New York City, change is osmething taken with trepidation and uncertainty. It's that wavering sense of failing equilibrium that has protesters gathered outside of Yankee Stadium on a warm wednesday morning. Signboards, banners, sandwich boards and bullhorns help them voice their outrage over something that — unlike the rest of the change the world is undergoing — maybe they can affect.

Not far from the protestors, construction equipment lays unused, cranes, bulldozers and trailers housing demolition equipment, all signs of what has been rumored for some time now — the demolition of the stadium. Coincidence is the only place where this gathering of protests matters, coincidence that the Federal Emergency Management Agency arranged for temporary housing for displaced residents of Brooklyn in a trailer park ghetto within walking distance of what was once Yankee Stadium. Coincidence that the last two nights in a row have found an unoccupied trailer there the residence of Maya Herrera, a woman with a singularly coincidential gift.

It's fear of that gift that has her away from the people that looked after her, fear of that gift that has placed her across the street from Yankee Stadium on her way to find breakfast, and coincidence that finds her waiting in line at the corner of a roadside hotdog vendor within earshot of the protestors on the same morning that a man named Saul Solomon is in the Bronx.

With all these particular dominos lined up, all it takes is one push to send them tumbling.

Maya's on her own. Again. It's been several long days…and longer nights…since the incident at the apartment building. The one that sent Maya rabbiting once again. On some level, she's convinced that this will be her life from now on. Running from one place to the next, trying to eke out whatever existence she can before her curse shows up again and forces her to run.


She's tired, and she'd love to be asleep, except that she's afraid of sleeping lately. Afraid of her dreams and what she might see. It shows; the Latina has dark rings around her eyes, visible even through her bronzed skin, and a slight jitter, the sort that comes from a combination of caffiene and sleep deprivation. Still, even a Typhoid Mary has to eat, and it's that which has dragged her out to the vendor that's on this corner. Thankfully, they don't ask questions, or judge the homeless. Usually. The protestors get a very tired glance from the woman, who's far more concerned with her own fatigue than anything else.

When one is a member of a religion, it can be key to pay a visit to holy sites. To make it home once in their life to the Promised Land. To make that hajj out east to kiss the black stone at Kaaba in Mecca. To finally walk through the hallowed halls of Graceland. Not many religions have a site of anti-sacredness, though. A place of great profanity. Saul's does, though, and he's come here today to see if it's really going to be bulldozed. There's a lot of political issues involved here. A lot of background information that, honestly, he just can't be bothered to learn. But this? This he definitely wants to see. Cos Saul, his hair might say Jewish, but his heart says Red Sox Nation, and he's here to witness as The House That Ruth Built comes tumbling down.

Whistling the kid's song 'Joshua Fought the Battle of Jericho' to himself, he moves through the crowd, careful to keep his Ortiz jersey hidden under his sweatshirt until that final moment.

"…you know, I gotta' say it's nice to see that people in this city can still get their balls in a vice over something now an' then." The gruff voice of the hotdog vendor rumbles over the sound of the chanting across the four lanes of sluggish traffic across the street. "I've been here for sixteen years sellin' hotdogs. Ain't closed when the stadium got shut down, ain't closed when the terrorist attacks started, ain't gonna' close till' I can't stand up no more." Squirting a line of mustard out onto the bun in his hand, his conversation with the man ahead of Maya in the line draws out the process of getting something to eat.

"You ain't pissed off 'bout this?" The balding man in the Mets jacket waiting ahead in line of Maya says to the vendor, jerking a thumb over his shoulder to point to the stadium. "Man my dad used'ta take me t'games here all'a time, fuckin' fat bastards runnin' this city can't spend a nuckle t'fix this stadium but they got Evo cops playin' fuckin cowboys and indians with terrorists?"

"Don't get me started 'bout the comic-book nutjobs." The vendor's grumble is a bit more pronounced, "I ain't lived in this city as long as I have t'see it get run under by those nutjobs, right?" A squirt of ketchup, a dollop of relish and a sprinkling of onions, and the frank is laid out. Tilting his head to the side, the vendor rankles his nose and hands off the hotdog, only breaking his conversational stride to shout over the man's shoulder to Maya. "What're you getin' darlin?"

Across the street the honk of horns is barely heard over the blaring protest of Bronx residents gathered together outside of the chain-link fence that surrounds the stadium. Just over one hundred protestors, all of them vying for the attention of a demolition crew that stands dismayed on the sidelines of the shouting. A small wooden sawhorse blockade has been erected between the street and the protestors, with only six NYPD officers and three squad cars between them to handle the situation.

Maya schools herself into that bland expression of "Not Having Anything To Say" when they start talking about comic-book nutjobs. She manages a tired smile that never reaches those dark eyes, and she nods to the little store of dogs. "Just a dog, everything, please." Tired. She feels it through her bones. She looks over to the protestors and the stadium. She'll never gather what the big deal is about all this. She's just not a baseball fan.

It's slowly beginning to dawn on Saul that maybe coming here with the intent of singing Sweet Caroline as the bulldozers tear through the outer walls of the stadium isn't one of his best ideas. After making certain that the zipper on his sweatshirt is pulled up as high as it can go, hiding the navy t-shirt (complete with big red B) underneath. As soon as he realizes that he's feeling something close to a panicky nervousness, Saul makes a bold decision and addresses the problem by flooding his system with THC. Self-medication is always the way to go in situations like these. It takes a strong-minded leader, you know?

Unfortunately, the side-effect is that the fearless leader suddenly notices the smell of hot dogs and realizes he could go for like six of them. Firm decision making is not always good decision making. Still, Saul ends up in line for the dog warden, craning his neck to see if they've got anything else. Like fried marshmallow peanuts or butter-injected twinkies. "Man," he mutters, "I gotta move to Texas."

Someone in traffic finds it a wonderful idea to simply lay on their horn, a blaring sound that rings out down the street for a solid minute as Saul makes his way through the traffic and across the street to the vendors. He's only one person away from Maya in line, a scraggly and lanky young man in a hoodie lurches from side to side behind her, the white plastic of headphoned plugged into his ears contrasting against the dark tan of his skin and coal black coils of hair pulled into a ponytail that is deposited into the drawn back hood at the base of his neck.

The man who was at the head of the line and the vendor continue their conversation about the 'good ole days' of New York City, continue their bigoted conversation that affirms their non-evolved stance about as subtly as a brick to the head. A squirt of mustard, a line of ketchup, a dollop of relish and a line of diced onions and one fire-engine red hotdog later, and the vendor's handing it off to Maya in a cardboard sleeve. "Seven fifty," he says with a lopsided smile. Seven dollars and fifty cents for a street-corner hotdog. And people say the New York City economy is getting better.

As Maya's being handed her food, the kid in the hoodie takes a step out of line, jerking his head to the side to look back at Saul behind him, dark eyes not staying fixed on one spot of the bigger man for too long before he glances back at Maya, and then steps a few more paces away from the vendor, clearly giving up his place in line as next.

"You!" The old man holding out the hot dog to Maya shouts over her shoulder to Saul, "What'ya want?" It's a simple question, but between the selection of deep fried sourdough pretzels hanging on a rotisserie rack, the bright red franks in the steamer tray, and what is clearly a cooler full of too-early-for-beer beer, it's not the broadest selection.

That kid in the hood sucks in a sniffling breath, wiping his nose with his sleeve, teeth toying with his lower lip as his hands go into the front pouch of his hoodie, moving away from the vendor's stall to stand behind a trashcan, watching the traffic go by.

The Latina takes her dog, with a faint sigh. She still has the money that Cat gave her, but it won't last long at seven-fifty a meal. And that's without even anything to drink. She manages that forced smile, along with a "Gracias", before taking it and moving a few feet away herself. She looks for a place to sit down…bus stop, bench, anything will do, and she moves to eat her breakfast.

"You drag your dogs through the garden?" Saul frowns a little at the stand, then shakes his head. "Guess that's a little Chicago. Uh. Kraut and mustard. That'll do me." Not too hard. Then he says, "Three of 'em. And a pretzel. Uh. Two pretzels." Saul's eyes are bloodshot and he could hardly be the first stoner the guy's come across. Probably not even the first today. Only the roasted nuts vendors and crews at Dunkies do better than the hot dog and pretzel guys. If he were in a more straight state of mind, he might have noticed the suspicious kid, but instead he turns to watch Maya go with a dopey-ass smile on his face, then looks back to the hot dog guy, chemically prepared for the insane total he's about to hear.

Dark eyes move from the trash can to the bus stop, and that teenager in the hoodie starts to move the same time Maya does. It's a simple mistake, making it too obvious that he was waiting on her to do anything. His sneakers are quiet as they move across the concrete, the sounds of loud shouting, honking horns and idiling cars drowning out his movement as he comes up to the bench behind the young Latina, hands still stuffed in his pockets.

"You got it." There's a practiced speed at which the vendor manages to flip open the top of the card with his tongs, retrieving the dog and preparing what Saul ordered. "So like I was saying," he goes on to the man at his side, "the day they pack them all up and give 'em their own section of the city to fuck over, that'll be the day I'll stop my bitchin'. Seriously, this city'd be a whole lot better if they lived in their side of it an' we all lived in ours." The stink of saurkraut rolls up from the stall, spread out over the steamed bun, eyes cast to the side to focus more on conversation than food preparation.

Just as she sits down, a hand comes out to grip Maya's shoulder, a firm grasp of wiry fingers then press down on her shoulder as a tingling numbness spreads down from her shoulder and into her chest, arresting her breathing and causing prickling pain like pins and needles going down to her waist. The hotdog tumbles out of Maya's hand and lands with a spatter at her feet, her back stiffens, and she can see coils of dark hair come into her periphery, strong cologne, and the rasping voice of that teenager who was in line behind her.

"Hurts, don' it?" His brows kick up with the rhetoric, "You jus' sit still girl, all I need's in your pockets. This trick a'mine ain't gonna kill you unless you piss me off an' I leave you paralyzed. So just stay chill, hold y'breath and don't try t'stand up." He leans over the bench, his other hand beginning to fish around her clothing, looking for a wallet, money, jewelry a phone. The evolution of mugging.

Her eyes widen, in a combination of pain and shock, and she has enough of a chance to let out a sort of strangled squawk of surprise before her entire body seizes up, including /breathing/, which is something she's become rather fond of the last twenty-odd years. The terror rises within her, and instinctively she tries to beat it back. She can't lose it. Not /here/. Not with all these people. Her rage wars with an internal prayer, but both are drowned out by the pain. She's got her wallet, her precious possession with her faux paperwork and her money. No phone for her, and no real jewelry either…when you're one step up from homeless, you have little.

Completely unawares of what's going on nearby, and certainly unprepared for what's likely about to happen, Saul fishes out two twenties from his pocket and holds them out for the guy between his index and middle fingers, using them to point at him. "Y'know what really makes me mad about these people? You can't tell 'em apart from anyone else! And the government ain't doin' nothin' to help us figure out who is who, right? They oughtta have to wear a badge or something, you know? Like a yellow helix on their shirt, you know? And maybe if I'm okay with dealing with guys who can, I donno, uh, crap waffles, but I'm not okay with dealing with someone who can, um, shoot lasers out his nipples, then I should be able to tell what they do, you know? It's my constitutional right, right? They should have something they can't get rid of, you know? Like a tattoo, says what they do, right where everyone can see. That way you know if you're dealin' with a guy who can explode stuff with a sneeze or a guy who is just, like, superhumanly good at algebra."

Usually a good shot of pot doesn't make him so sarcastic, but Saul left his dog at home and the dog is an evo-dog, capable of projecting positive aura waves into his master. Or at least that's what Saul says. Once he's got his dogs he glances around, "Huh. Where'd the pretty girl go? They always walk away before I get to say something embarrassing to them."

It might not be surprising that Holocaust imagery is lost on the hotdog vendor and his Mets-fan sidekick, because the flasg of one hand pointing at Saul and the toothy grin is all too indicative of how he fails to realize that's a terrible idea. "You know, see, that's the kinda' shit m'talkin' about. They got those blood tests and shit, but that ain't gonna' do you no good on the street. Half of the fuckers don't even register, they just think it ain't our worry that they can blow up a whole city." He fails to notice the mugging happening less than thirty feet away, continuing on his diatribe as he starts to mop up some hotdog water with a dirty dishcloth. "I hear they started branding 'em down in South America. That's some pretty wild shit, but you know— maybe that mark thing ain't such a bad idea, you know?"

Breathing hastens, and Maya can feel her heart racing out of control in the moments before her breathing entirely stops. Those few short gasping breaths she had managed to take cease, leaving her suffocating and unable to suck in the air right in front of her lips. A pawing hand pulls at her wallet, flipping thorugh it to take out the handful of money she has, stuffing it into his hoodie pocket, "S'right girl, you just sit there all nice and still like…" He pushes her foreward, fingers feeling around in the back pocket of her jeans for anything, but it's just that fistful of money and a dirty hotdog for his effort. "You know, you ain't makin' this day any easier on me. Maybe y'can help me out, you know… another way." His brows crease together, "lemme show you what else this lil' trick a'mine does."

Saul's stalwart bigot vendor shifts his weight to one side and offers a lopsided smile, nodding across the street. "You know, the very least one'a those damn Evos could do is fix the fuckin' stadium. They can blow our city t'hell an' back but they can't so much as fix a few fuckin' buildings? My buddy Matt was sayin' that maybe we get, uh— the fuck was it— reparations? Yeah— reparations from 'em all for what happened." It takes all kinds in this city.

"Lemmie show ya…" The mugger whispers into Maya's ear, leaning back and standing upright. In that movement, the prickling sensation in Maya's extremities worsens, but it only underlines the fact that she begins moving without input. One arm raises, then another, her weight shifts as she leans forward, and with his hand still on her shoulder, the teen begins puppeteering her like a doll to stand up straight. With his hand on her shoulder, he just looks like an overprotective boyfriend, save for the blaise expression on her face and the lidded quality of her eyes. "C'mon babe, you'n me are gonna' go work out the rest'a what you owe me…" as he points towards the mouth of a nearby alley, Maya's head turns, and he affords her a quick hiss of breath into her lungs.

Memories come flashing unbidden into her mind, as she feels herself moving unbidden. Staten Island. Logan. The part of her that was swirling in inner anger flares white hot as if a sun erupted inside her, but it's nothing white that comes forth to herald that anger.

It's black.

Her eyes change, a darkening that changes until she's there with two inky pools staring back from her face, ebon trickles running down her cheek, as the power within her flares out. Down her face, and dropping to the ground with gentle spatters, like raindrops.

If raindrops made sarin look like a mild irritation.

"Yeah, they oughtta just take them evos out someplace far away, where they can't bother good folk. Yep. Get rid of 'em. Oh, and the fuckin' Irish. Can't stand those micks." Saul drops the money, snaps up his food and turns to go before he takes a shillelagh to the side of the head. More hot dogs than a sane man's belly could handle, with some salty (and possibly stale) pretzels on top. Now he just needs a beer to wash it down. Unfortunately, he just kind of messed that one up. "Why doesn't anyone ever have diet Pepsi? Goddam Coke consortium. Sti-" Saul slows to a stop and sniffs the air, then shakes his head and continues on his way back over to watch the show. As he does, he hums Tessie to himself. That one should be safe, right?

It only takes a moment for that brief hesitation Saul had to turn into something else. It only takes a moment for him to notice mid-bite into one of the hotdogs that the cars aren't crawling across the street any longer. It's easy to mistake for a moment of furthered gridlock, the occasional burst of a horn from one of the cars a perfect sign that everything is normal, right up until he gets close to the first car in the line of crossing the street. The driver is thrashing around like a caged animal, head smacking against the driver's side window, tiny tar-colored droplets spattering on the glass. One bare palm smacks up to the window, streaks down and the driver slumps forward to rest against the steering column, horn blaring.

A quick look across the street shows everything else working in similar procession. Other passengers in cars, convulsing in seisures, people walking across the street suddenly dropping to the ground and kicking legs and arms wildly, some reaching up to hold their throats and gasp like fish out of water for air; wide-eyed and horrified.

Back across the street, the hot-dog vendor has fallen onto his back, rolled onto his side and is clawing at his neck, streaks of glossy black liquid running out of his eyes, curling up into the fetal position, arms trembling while the man in the Mets jacket is motionless, black liquid drooling out of his mouth in a bubbling mixture of saliva and toxin, the same running in thin rivulets out of his darkened eye sockets.

The young mugger has fallen onto his hands and knees, letting out rasping breaths, choking up black bile that drips from his eyes, nose and mouth until, to Maya's horror, he rolls onto his back, fingers clawing at the air, one hand curled around his throat, legs kicking as he spits up more of that inky fluid. She can barely feel the sensation coming back to her arms and legs, feel his control over her give way, feel the pins and needles easing up and breathing coming back to her.

Screams now replace the sound of horns, a handful of the protestors across the street have fallen down to lay motionless on the ground outside of Yankee Stadium. Several more are huddled around trying to figure out what's going on as the wave of toxin strikes them, sending the onlookers into convulsions and spasms as their air-ways close up and their muscles constrict.

But there's something so very wrong about all of this to Maya, something that despite the horror of what she sees here shouldn't seem so strange. Someone is still standing, someone too close not to be affected, someone standing between a taxi and a black ford taurus.

And it's not Alejandro.

Her eyes widen as her body comes back to herself. «No, no, not again!!» she shrieks in Spanish. She looks like she's about to run, but she sees Saul there, and the discongruity of someone actually STANDING there in all this causes her to stare at him with those inky eyes, in shock.

THC slows down a guy's reaction time, but when the crowd one is standing in all sort of fall over and die horribly, it's going to leave some scars. Saul slowly looks down at his feet. Then up at the people in cars, in construction equipment, manning the hot dog booths. "Oh God. Oh God oh God oh God. Oh God. What did I do? What did I do? Oh no no no no. I told them…" Saul drops his food at his feet as he moves to a guy who is slumped against a newspaper box and shakes him. But there's no waking the dead. "C'mon, c'mon. Oh, God, I rat poisoned everyone. Oh, God, I knew this would happen." He's really jumping to the wrong conclusion here.

Pressing a hand to the man's face he hits him with whatever comes to mind. A shot of epinephrin. Ephedra. Morphine. Cocaine. Even if there was a cure, Saul's no doctor and the only thing running through his mind is the scene from Pulp Fiction where Uma Thurman gets stabbed in the heart and trying to figure out what in the world was in that syringe? "Was it the same stuff Nic Cage had in The Rock? Oh, oh, oh shit. It's not working. Oh, God, I need to… I need to turn myself in!" When he looks up and around he stares at Maya with wide, clear, non-inky-black eyes. Voice gone up several octives to a squeak he says, "Oh God, I'm sorry!"

Everyone else is dead, dying, or in some interim state between that. At least those who were exposed to the initial panic attack and the ones who have been foolish enough to wander in to the scene after seeing people falling down. The NYPD officers across the street have all fallen dead and lifeless, but some of the protesters are scattering, fleeing from the area with fearful cries. It could be a nerve gas attack, it could be Evolved terrorism, it oculd be anything and the seeds of fear the medi ahave planted in their heads have finally bore fruit.

But there's Saul, almost like the focul point of tunnel vision, someone alive and unaffected, someone near to the epicenter of the poison emission who doesn't even bare symptoms. Alejandro would run black from the eyes before he was able to calm Maya into the end of her fit, but this man — he's terrified, but he's unharmed.

Down the street, people are getting out of their cars, looking ahead along the stalled traffic, trying to figure out what's going on. Joggers lay motionless on the sidewalk, dogs and the people walking them are crumpled together by a fire hydrant. Birds that were in flight have fallen from the skies, wings curled and backs arched in pools of inky black. This is just like what happened at the wedding, just as many people, if not more.

Two things register quickly in Maya Herrera's mind. One: She needs to get out of here. Now. And two: this man needs to come with her. She runs towards Saul, reaching out for him almost in a panic as she gets there. "We need to go! We need to go now!" She says, urgently. It won't be long before someone comes and finds this. And then they might not be ABLE to run.

Saul stares at Maya. For a moment there it seemed like he might kick the THC out of his system, what with all the horror and the panic, but someone willing to take the lead means he's only too willing to let even more in and he just nods at her. "Oh, oh yeah, absolutely. We should… go. They'll tase us. They've got tasers that come in shotguns now." He tries not to look down when he moves, even though that means he's nearly tripping over corpses, because every time he looks down he tears start to stream from his eyes and they aren't black or magic. They're just regular old tears. He's pretty sure that this is somehow all his fault. Those guys at Evolved Anonymous were no help at all!

In the moments it takes for Saul to unevenly begin sprinting down the sidewalk with Maya, the black is beginning to clear out of her eyes. Perhaps it's the clarity of running, perhaps it's been the attempts at learning control, or maybe it's something to do with the one survivor of her venomous rampage, but the black tears streak out of her vision, mingling with ones more natural — ones like Saul's — as the two of them flee the scene of the accident.

They aren't the only people running from the scene, people too far away to be affected but close enough to witness people dropping dead like flies, it's a natural instinct to simply run. But the running, for prolonged periods, isn't easy for Maya— not with the way her hands and feet feel,t he tired pull of air into her lungs, whatever that kid did to her has a lasting effect, tiring her, making her sluggish, like someone waking up from anisthetic.

The mouth of an alley wedged between a dry cleaners and an apartment building is an inviting way to get off of the street, a way to get out of eyeshot of people running both away from and towards the scene now. Sirens, distant and loud, sound off amidst the cityscape. Dead police officers, dead protestors, dead bigots, it takes all kinds in New York City.

She stumbles over into the alleyway, once they get away from the immediate scene. "Something wrong…" she manages, gulping in air as if it's harder to draw it. "No energy…everything is hard to do." Especially with the adrenaline rush fading. "Need your help…" She'll be lucky if she doesn't pass out.

Saul looks around himself, sizing up their situation as quickly as his slowed mind will allow him. "I can't carry you. Look at my hair. Jews don't carry people. We left Moses in the wilderness for God's sake." He looks back toward the bright lights of police and ambulances (and oh God oh God all those corpses oh God he should have been nicer to those Irish guys oh God) and probably even HomeSec. "And I think it might be Rosh Hashanah. Once the sun goes down, I've- you know, no choice!"

He looks back at her, realizes his excuses are awful, then says, "Oh, God." Grabbing her hand, Saul drops the equivalent of a dozen cups of coffee directly into her bloodstream. All that NoDoz for the bar exam wasn't much use then, but he should've known one day he'd be running from the police. And just for good measure, he tosses in an Adderall he stole from a friend's medicine cabinet. "I hope you don't prefer decaf, lady."

Chemical cocktails are marvelous things, and while the surge of caffene into Maya's bloodstream mixed with the amphetamine of the Adderall her extremities go from tingling to trembling in the time it takes for her heart to feel like it migh explode in her chest and her vision to blur from the sudden rush. When her head clears and the sudden onset of dizziness from the rush of oxygen from her now fully working lungs fades, she can hear the whine of sirens instead of the sound of blood rushing in her ears, even if the throb of her heart is almost as loud.

They alley opens out onto another street, giving them a few options of escape, but for the moment no one's attention is here, it's on the scene of the 'accident' itself. Traffic is congested up and down four lanes, horns are still blaring, and steam is rising up into the air from a manhole cover in the middle of the alley. Save for the adrenaline and sensation of panic they both share, this is as close to a moment of respite as either will get.

The Latina gasps, as the sudden rush of chemicals hits her. She looks around, suddenly clear-headed and full of energy. She'll thank God for the blessings later…and hopefully it doesn't strike her how similar that gift is to John Logan. "We need somewhere to hide. Do you have a place we can hide?" she asks Saul. "Someplace where the police won't find us!" There's an urgency to her voice.

Right about here Saul remembers that he's actually wearing a disguise over a possible second disguise. As they pass through the alley, he pulls off his sweatshirt and tosses it into a dumpster. Underneath he's got on his red and blue Red Sox t-shirt, demonstrating ardent support for David 'Big Papi' Ortiz. He reaches into his back pocket and pulls out a folded Sox cap and thrusts it toward Maya. "Here. Put this on. We'll look like tourists. We can say you're my Israeli cousin. Can you look super, super angry at everything?" He's nervous and terrified so he's just saying whatever comes to his mind.

"Yeah, I've got an apartment, but it's in Chinatown. God, now I wish I had some friends." It's like an after-school special about the dangers of drug use. "We should go to a hotel. Some place that takes cash. And I'll get you a room and then I'll go turn myself in."

Maya looks over as Saul suddenly changes his attire. It surprises her, but only for a moment, and then it's back to memories of running north, trying to get to America. She pulls on the hat, pulling the brim down lower to cover her face as much as she can, and can't help but look amused. "I look Israeli? Lead the way, it'll do." A pause, and then a reminder to herself that he's not Alejandro. "Please."

"You look dark. That's enough for most people. No one looks past the generals." Saul looks toward the street. "We could take a taxi, but they might be setting up roadblocks. Do they do that? Like in a city?" He's seen The Fugitive roughly thirty times, but right now the mechanics of it are escaping him. "Here to Chinatown isn't exactly walkable. We just need to keep going until… until we're out of the fallout, right?" He pulls his Jewfro back and rubberbands it away, so it doesn't stick out quite as much. As he rushes toward the street he glances at himself in a storefront. "Oh, great, I look like Penn Jillette's retarded nephew."

As they reach the street he tries to gauge traffic, continuing on the move if it looks like they're apt to get trapped in gridlock, but chancing waving for a cabbie if he doesn't see lots of red brake lights, cops or worse. There's a part of him that's just waiting for the national guard to roll in here with tanks filled with explosive shells, each with his name written on them.

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