Do It Right


isis_icon.gif zachery_icon.gif

Scene Title Do It Right
Synopsis Doing it right and doing the right thing … are very different endeavors.
Date December 15, 2019


A huddled little form tramps across the soggy, half-frozen ground. Arms crossed stubbornly across a lithe frame, each bootfall seems to come down down with some personal vendetta against the very earth upon which they tread. From beneath a hood comes a spray of wavey golden tangles…. and a good deal of grumbling. The grumbling takes on various pitches - some high and boarding on friendly, others low and clearly meant to intimidate - but, all indistinguishable beyond their pitch.

The figure trudges along by the lolling, weather-worn sign: Physician and straightens at the door. When a gloved hand pulls back the hood, the smile that comes across Rene’s sharp features looks… garrish. The smile is just a hair to big, eyes just a little too wide, and the twitch just a little to… twitchy. Still, Isis puppeteers the borrowed body’s knuckles up for a sharp rap upon the door.

The silence that follows might seem almost too quiet ang too long for someone to be home, if not for the gentle hum of a generator somewhere on the premises.

"It's not-" A voice comes the instant the front door opens, if a little weakly, "… walk-in hours. Oh."

Though it might as well be the title of his biography by now, it bears repeating: Zachery has looked better. Though he's in his usual slacks and dress shirt, he's leaning somewhat awkwardly to one side, one hand on the door while his free arm is pressed idly against his ribs. A still barely scabbed over stripe of red sits on the side of his neck, uncovered.

He turns his bruised and unshaven face down to his visitor, shoulders dropping ever so slightly and brow knitting as his eye searches - whatever that expression is doing. "Sunshine," the name leaves him with some amount of relief, surprise following right behind, "What do you want?"

Whether it is the endearing nickname, the sight of Zachery, or better still the sight of Zachery's condition…. The twitch stops. So, that's nice. Frozen. Isis-in-Rene, head tilted up, lingers longer than is appropo of normal social encounters. But, neither of them really excel at normal social encounters…

There's a flicker of something in borrowed baby blues. A softening that is more pronounced in Rene's celestial eyes than it might have been in her own darker ones. Isis-in-Rene indulges the breezy breath of a short fond laugh. "Have I mentioned how much I like that nickname?"

"Wellness check!" Isis-in-Rene sing-songs in answer to Zachery's query. "Seems I might have checked in sooner. You look like shit." Even as she carries on in Rene's borrowed pitch, she leans forward. Bending at the waist she means to peek inside and spy whatever there is to be spied about the docto'rs quarters. Visitors? Ears? Eyes? Warmth?

Certainly maybe some of those things, but not anywhere in sight. The hallway does not show much of anything beyond a peek into a nearby office and a few closed doors further in.

One of them with a few locks on it. Certainly, things would be easier to see if Zachery wasn't blocking the way in, unmoving.

"Wellness-" He repeats flatly, as if it only barely manages to be a word to his current state of mind, and levels another look down at Rene's face with doubled scrutiny. "I feel like shit. But I'm - fine. Crashed the Bone Wagon." He lifts his chin and glances to the side, as if toward the empty spot next to the house, where the car used to stand. Then, as if out of some habit, he asks, "… Did you bring any food."

"But, you're alive." So matter of fact. Half-invading of Zachery's home and personal bubble, Isis-in-Rene glances back out into the drive towards the indicated empty space. "I have mixed feelings on that news," she admits. "I mean, Bone Wagon…" Approved. "But also… hearse." So NOT approved. Still bent awkwardly, Isis-in-Rene catches Zachery in a side-eye.

"Funny you should ask that…." Slink. This body is no larger than her own, well suiting to weaseling by on that oh-so-casual and familiar note. "I brought candy bars, but-" Unless physically stopped, she beaches the threshold, glances into the office, and ultimately turns back to Zach with a smug sort of smile. "I left them on my other person."

It's not that Zachery doesn't try, but more that his ribs do not want to. It takes only a single sidestep for him to freeze in place with an expression of pained regret, throwing a glare over at the intruder. Sure, why the fuck not.

His question comes much more sharply than the slow way in which he pushes the door shut. "What are you on?" His voice is somewhere in between annoyance and confusion, but yet something else has him stare a little harder. He gestures vaguely toward the door that leads into a dark living room, all bookshelves and drawn curtains. "And how much of it did you take?"

Oh! Dark and forboding living room. Yes, let’s. As if lead by a nose, Isis-in-Rene pokes a sunny head of gold in first before the borrowed body follows suit. “Life,” she calls back in Rene’s voice. You know, ever sane person’s response from erratic behavior. “Life. Borrowed time. A little bit of fuck-it-all mixed with what-the-fuck-have-I-done. You know, the good shit.” She conducts gloved, foreign hands to the small of her back as she puruses the selection on the bookshelf. With each title she reads, her smile wanes.

Then she’s turning back that visage of elegant angles and sapphire eyes, one hand resting on the bindings of the books. When she looks back, it’s not Zachery standing there though. It’s someone else with a fetish for similar texts.


She winces and deliberately looks back at the books. Through them, really. She clears her throat as the phantom image melts away in her periphery, bleeding back into the wounded one-eyed man. “Borrowed time. Borrowed body. I had to check and make sure you were okay. Clearly, you’re not. It’s me.” Having had suffiencient time to readjust a smile, Isis-in-Rene turns back to Zachery and gives her best wink - a scruching effect of the left half of Rene’s beautiful face. Smoooooth..

Zachery's entrance into the living room had stalled the moment he hit the doorway, leaning a shoulder against the deep woodgrain that makes for the border between room and hallway. And it's where he's still standing, arms crossed over his chest, his eye tracking the movement in his livingroom with gradually increasing focus. Unblinking, recognition making way for distrust as he studies body language and mentally pries further still.

The penny drops without him moving from his spot, but not without movement all together - the barest excuse for a grin pulls at a corner of his mouth, though amusement reaches his eyelids much more easily. Anticipatory. Even if all of it disappears, a moment later, when he lifts a hand to drag it over his face. Oof.

"He's going to kick the shit out of you."

“I fell in a pit.” Step. “Froze my ass off.” Step. “Had to tase myself.” Step-step. “And, he’s going to kick my ass.” Isis-in-Rene stands deliberately in front of Zachery, encroachingly close, and tips her head back and aside to face him. “But, you know - don’t go reading into it or anything.” The cupid’s bow lips shrink into a daring little purse.

“I’ve got maybe an hour till he wakes up. And, maybe fifteen minutes till he gets out the knots, so… What’s good to drink here? We’re goin’ to need it.” She lets Rene’s baby blues glide down Zachery’s form and back up again. “You need it.”

"I'm on so many heavy duty painkillers," Zachery answers, "and hilariously, or tragically, or both - you're wearing my drink supplier."

His hand comes down from his face and moves to Rene's, instead. Middle and index fingertips pushed directly into forehead. No. Too close. Fuck off. Out of this BUBBLE. "How about two thirds of a bottle of tequila and a walk."

Baby blues follow the progression of Zach’s hand, nearly crossed. Under the suggestive pressure, Isis-in-Rene manages to lean back in a decent immitation of a game of limbo. Knowing the good doctor is uncomfortable is enough to light a fresh, tilted smirk before the borrowed body is captained away, shoulder bobs shrugging the meatsuit into a more casual stance. “Painkillers have never been my thing, but tequilla.” Nodnodnod.

The bodysnatcher turns to consider the small abode once more time from inside. She weighs the comparable warmth here against the likelyhood of it’s being ‘bugged’, but resigns with a little grunt. “Yeah, alright. I’ll meet you out front…” She begrudingly pries her gaze from the inanimate articles of the room, setting aside the need to puzzle over the minor details and whatever little factoids they might reveal. She came here for two reasons. Her personal curiosities would have to wait, for now.

She scoots by Zachery again and flashes a charming smile. “Bundle up. It’s chilly.” She leaves the front door cracked just a hair behind her.

Isis finds herself outside alone for almost a minute, the home and office maintaining their quiet save for a creak of doorhinge here, a metal clck! there.

He leaves the house in his black peacoat, shutting the door behind him and slipping the keys in his pocket. Of the many things he's invested in since prison, gloves and a scarf have clearly fallen off of the list of priorities, and his shoulders stiffen as he braces himself against the cold. "I should have known when I didn't see that horse of his."

He pulls his coat's collar up, a little awkwardly due to holding a bottle of tequila by the neck. While that bottles up near his face anyway, he twists the top off and just starts glugging.

Because, as said, he fucking needs it.

“Of course he has a fucking horse,” Isis-in-Rene mumbles, eyes following the greedy incline of the bottle. Less judgement, more impatience. “Because I fucking walked. In the cold.” The loaner body is turned back down the walk, one hand held out expectantly. “I hate the cold…” She tips her head, strange streams of sunny silk cutting across her vision causing her to draw back slightly before setting a pace. “I do like horses, though…”

Clearly her weather and livestock preferences are very important topics of conversation. Pivotal. Crutial even. She sighs at herself and rubs the back of a glove along a golden brow. “So, they visit you after they came and got me?”

Only when Zachery's drained a probably unhealthily generous portion of the bottle does he lower it again, swallowing dryly as he initiates his own saunter forward and away from his Providence confines. On his way, he juts the bottle out on offer — blindly, but quite high. Almost exactly where he's judging it might be too high for a person in that body to reach comfortably. Those missing 4 inches, what a difference they make.

"They were here when I got back. Told me you'd be fine." His words halt, and there's a roll of his jaw before he darts a look sideways to catch a glimpse of what might be on his friend's face. "Were they right?"

Isis-in-Rene swipes back absently for the bottle, doing a double-take when she comes up empty. It takes a good hop from the short, golden-topped physique to wrest the tauntingly dangled bottle free. “Physically… fucking peachy.” With the bottle tipped high, she cuts a pointed gaze to Zachery that silently speaks to all manner of suspicions. Too peachy. “Not even a slap on the resolidified wrist,” she hisses through the burn of alcohol, using the back of Rene’s jacket sleeve to dab liquor from the corner of her lips. A pointless endeavor seeing as her next statement - “I had it. For just a moment, I had it. But…” - is followed up with another deep draught.

The tequila sloshes as it comes jutting back at the doctor. “That’s it then? They popped in to what - give you a status report?”

But that answer will have to wait. After a chuckle escapes Zachery, his pace slows and he puts his hand over his face again, thumb mashed into a temple. So much going on at once, and so out of the blue. "I've barely even… processed you being here. You not- being…"

He stops, then swipes for the bottle again and asks, "What do you mean, you had it?"

“So, what - you thought I ghosted in Mr. Sunshine here? That’d be a trick.” Isis snorts out through Rene’s sharp nose. Goldy brows bob once. Isis-in-Rene reaches into the hood to scratch beneath golden coils. Another moment still to adjust the lay of the coat, or perhaps the lay of the overall body. One more tick to glance back over a shoulder and gauge their distance from the doctor’s little residence. “Adam. Eternity. I had it.” She holds out borrowed gloved hands, revealing them empty.

"Are you— kidding me."

The question leaves Zachery flatly and without thought, followed up almost immediately with another- "You're kidding me." This time, when he chuckles, it's much more abruptly and with a grin widening in its wake. "And he didn't kill you? So - alright - we really are actually… he's…" His mouth closes again, lips pressed to a thin line for a moment. He stares down at the upturned hands, then back up at Rene's face, a little harder than he should need to, as if looking for the other person within.

Zachery’s search for the lady behind the curtain is uninterrupted. She’s too busy looking down at the small empty landscape of those palms, the stranger’s boots crunching dirt played on a loop as a strange backdrop. “…Fucked,” she finishes his statement. Everything is fucked.

His expression falls, and again he speaks without thinking. "You know, I thought I'd killed you."

“You know, I think I wish you had…” Clearly it’s her turn to blurt uncomfortable truths without filter. She reaches out and pulls the tequila bottle from him. A sharp tilt hardens Sunshine’s jaw in a way that properly relays the determination of the little redhead within. “I had it, and now it’s gone. Now it’s all for nothing. All of it.” Isis-in-Rene’s hand darts out - a little claw meant to catch Zachery’s forearm as though trying to keep one from sinking. Him or her?

She turns to him, finally meeting his gaze through another man’s eyes. “I need to know what they asked you to do, Zach.”

Zachery's arm reflexively twitches back at the movement, only to come forward again - fingers hooking preemptively into sleeve as their forearms draw parallel. Isis' admission narrows his eyes, but he does not waver.

"The kind of work that will save the world."

The words are not his. Not in cadence, nor in spirit. It's not enough of an answer, either. Regardless of that, she has rarely seen him look this unequivocally certain of something, his expression showing an unfiltered kind of determination that reassures rather than riles up. He is just… decided, face relaxing from some worry that was still nagging at the back of his mind.

"Or half of it, anyway. That's what they asked." Given the nature of their affiliations, it shouldn't be hard to guess which half. "But instead, with the tools they've entrusted me— I'm going to help destroy it. All of it."

He - it’s her that’s meant to be kept from sinking… Zachery’s words weaken borrowed knees and Rene’s body almost crumbles into the dirt but for the steadying claw of a grip wrenched into Zachery’s coat sleeve. “That… “ A pained gargle - the sound of dragging of one’s conscience - dribbles over parted lips. In coming here she had known what the answer would be - but it didn’t stop that small inkling, those pinpricks of hope, that Zachery had been tasked with someone so obscure and disconnected from her own assignment… Or that he might have just refused to confide in her. Such small mercies do not exist in their world.

“That’s… not just on you…” A tug on the sleeve pulls Isis-in-Rene up, but the jerkiness of the measure insists on the doctor’s undivided attention. “That weight won’t fall on just your shoulders, Zach. I stole Gorgon.” She stops to search his face.

The way in which Zachery's collected and calm stare slowly begins to twist into something else is in clear, separate stages. For several seconds, there's confusion smattered clear across his face, then the telltale signs of a desperate effort to understand - to recall - before a sharp exhale brings his grin right back from whence it came. Wider than before, with a laugh that doesn't cease until he hasn't got any air left in his lungs.

"Isis, that- that's-… that's great. That's fantastic!" The words are almost more laugh than speech, and he reaches to clamp another hand onto a shoulder to help steady his newly-discovered-to-be partner in crime. Only a modicum of concern manages to worm its way into his voice through an apparent excess of elation when he asks, puzzled, "What's wrong?"

If Rene’s eyebrows climb any higher they’ll become a permanent to his oh-so-glorious golden locks. Isis-in-Rene stares up at Zachery. “G-great?” she manages quietly. Wait. What the fuck just happened? She turns her head. “Fantastic?” she asks the broad hand resting on her borrowed shoulder.

She looks back to the doctor’s unnervingly thrilled expression. “Zach, half was never an option. There are fewer us than them. Ninety-nine percent. Now your one hundred…” With an achy creeking gesture she removes her grip digit by digit, drawing them into a small fist back to her middle. “That’s not a weight my shoulders could bear. Then again…” She wouldn’t be alive to bear it? She squints at Zach. “How exactly is this ‘great’?” No judgement. He’s hit upon curiosity now. She could use a silver lining, no matter how convoluted.

"Because it'll be-" The answer starts with so much energy and enthusiasm it seems almost impossible for Zachery to be able to stop it still - but something does. Words filtering in, processed late, causing his grin to falter and for his shoulders to come down.

His hands slip off of Rene's coat, and Isis is served a look of incredulity with that same bright gladness from before still waiting in the wings. Like he's waiting for meaning click without his help. But - since he's already started explaining, he might as well finish it.

"… It'll be over."

The weight grows - sadness is heavier than guilt. Isis-in-Rene winces as Zachery’s grin sheds like a dried flower - tapped just a hair too hard so its petals begin to peel, dangle, and fall. She can’t join him in this one. The crazy train had been wild. Fun even. But this, it appears, is where she gets off. She can’t fool herself enough this time to keep going. Even worse, she can’t let him fool himself either. “It won’t be. He’ll survive. He’ll make more clones. He’ll resurrect the ones he wants.” Isis-in-Rene shrugs. “He still wins….” She holds up the bottle of tequila between them.

For a good few seconds that's all that hangs between the two of them, in lieu of words to join it.

Then, the bottle is snatched away again, brought almost immediately to Zachery's lips- though he hesitates to drink from it.

"There's time," he decides, finally, his grin now gone entirely. He starts walking again, tipping the bottle up for a swig, straying from the existing dirt road and continuing further away from the home, eye aimed right down into the grass ahead as he picks up his pace.

Once the bottle comes back down from his bruised face, he wipes a knuckle past a corner of his mouth and says, mirthlessly, "Time enough to… figure out how to do it right. Sabotage this whole thing so that there's nothing left. No one left."

Sapphire eyes take in every detail where normally her hazel would have been consumed with flecks of gold by now. Isis-in-Rene watches Zachery before dropping her gaze to the bottle in his grip, looking there at her distorted reflection … a stranger’s distorted reflection in the shape of the glass. “It’s not the Bonnie and Clyde I’d imagined…” she intones disappointedly to the tiny stranger half dipped in tequila, then jerks her chin up to look at Zachery anew. “If you fuck it up, I’ll haunt you…”

“Do it right, or don’t fucking do it at all.”

A huff of a chuckle is all Isis is going to get as confirmation. It's a bitter thing. "Right," he agrees, voice low in pitch and volume both, "or not at all."

With that thought still rolling around in his head, he blinks somewhat hazily down at the path they're cutting through the grass - past an oak tree with a hole in it, back in a direction familiar to her. "You fucking stole it. I… wouldn't have thought you'd have it in you. And before you object-"

Without looking, he offers the bottle out to the side once more - this time at a more appropriate height, his tone flat and unyielding when he adds, "I'm going to have you leave his body somewhere passably comfortable. Back around where you found it." Quite possibly with a glass of water and some painkillers nearby. "In the meantime, catch me up."

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