Don't Poke The Crazy Bear


elisabeth_icon4.gif magnes_icon3.gif

Scene Title Don't Poke the Crazy Bear!
Synopsis Please do not SHOOT at the nuclear weapon!
Date December 30, 2018

Magnes's Cell

It's December 30th, and the cell that Elisabeth will find Magnes in is a bit of a rundown formerly rather plush loft type situation. He sits in the middle of his cell as usual, legs crossed, meditating. He has a lot to think about, weighing the desire for the return of his friends against the stability of multiple worlds.

As far as protagonist archetypes go, Magnes is less a responsible Superman and more of a bet the destruction of multiple universes and deal with the consequences later Goku type.

Luckily Elisabeth finds him quite easily, as he was given visitor's rights before everything went entirely to hell, so she knows the exact location of his cell.

It's taken 4 days to sort out how to get around the flooded and/or collapsed portions of the arcology's maintenance tunnels to get to him. It was never about knowing where he was — it's just the getting to him. Because she is dead. It's 4 days Elisabeth spends worrying that Magnes is going to lose his shit and get himself killed — the expectation is that Don will use their deaths as leverage, one way or another. Although she's come a long way in trusting that Magnes has the ability to keep a level head on his shoulders, he still has that hot-headed, impulsive child in him that does shit like push an insane man to action. Joy is still working on a way to get her Michelle too — the older woman is carefully watched, so it's even more difficult to get to her unseen.

Late in the evening, after Magnes's dinner hour has come and gone, the guards have made their routine check. It takes focus to form her silence field exactly as she wants it, wrapping it around herself and the vent that she's going to need to take off the wall in his bathroom's ceiling. She lets herself down slowly, standing atop the toilet, and then climbs the rest of the way down, closing the john's lid. She listens carefully for human habitation and only when she's assured he's alone in his room does she open that bathroom door and throw his toothbrush at him. Immediately, her finger is to her lips even though she's extended the field around him enough to block his voice if she shouts.

Magnes immediately opens his eyes, turning around to carefully push himself up. He doesn't rush, that'd be suspicious. Instead he casually walks to the bathroom, then closes the door behind him.

He listens for the subtle change in their surroundings that generally comes with her silence field, then reaches in to wrap his arms around her, pulling her in tight. "I… I thought you were dead. Don wants me to resurrect everyone, and I was going to, even though Michelle said…"

Wrapping her arms tightly around him in the somewhat close confines of the bathroom, Elisabeth blows out a breath. "Jesus fucking Christ, Magnes." There is so much to unpack in that statement. But she lets him bask a little bit in the reassurance that she's still alive.

When she lets him go, she puts him at arm's length and skims his face, then smacks his head. "It's sheer goddamn luck and Odessa that we're not dead. And there are plenty who are. We'll deal with you poking the fucking crazy bear later. You've spoken with Michelle? Getting to her is difficult — I haven't been able to yet." She pauses and then pushes his hair back a little. "Are you okay?" Because he got people killed. He can't exactly be enjoying the fruits of his own actions.

"I haven't been okay for a long time. Something that I had to learn about life is that there's no action I can take that won't risk everyone's life. Even on the boat, when I should have taken charge, I just… didn't do anything except try to talk to them, and hope everyone got on board with me. People died, people keep dying, but I don't…" Magnes closes his eyes and takes a deep breath. "I have to keep going, no matter what. I needed to be down here, I needed to trust in Edward's predictions, that if I follow what I think is best, it's what I'm supposed to do."

"People keep dying though, and I just…" He shakes his head, trying his best to steel himself despite the clear emotional conflict in the deep crease of his brow. "The moment he said Michelle was dead, I realized that we had limited time. If she was alive, I had to find out as soon as possible, I had to get close to her as soon as possible. I knew there would be consequences, but I couldn't just… I couldn't wait."

"I found her, she wants me to continue working on the machine, while she continues secretly working on it too. You can trust West Rosen, Claire's ex boyfriend squad I guess." he shrugs. "She has a plan. She's leading her own resistance, but they don't really know who to trust outside of her particular cell. I have to do whatever Don asks, and I have to tell him how the machine works and how to make it work. He wants to kill her, and the plan is to use me so that he won't need her anymore."

"I'm not sure what she's planning to do, she said they don't have enough people to recover the ARK, but we have to work on the machine until her people are ready to do something." He shrugs his shoulders and holds his hands up again, clearly having no clue what that 'something' is."

"She spoke to Cardinal too, with the machine. I don't really know what they talked about." He reaches down, opening his coat and raising his shirt to reveal a patched up wound on his side. "She shot me, to explain why West killed three guards. To make it look like I did it and keep our cover."

Elisabeth just shakes her head slightly as he talks. "You know… rehashing right now what you coulda shoulda done is useless," she tells him quietly. "Understand that the people in our own group have issues with you and you're going to have to deal with those. But for now, just…. do the best you can to compartmentalize what happened. We'll deal with it after."

Both eyebrows shoot up. Great, now she has to convince them to trust West fucking Rosen who was one of the shooters. Because she understands immediately that he's doing what he needs to do to survive Don as well. Fuck.

"If he lets you near Michelle, let her know Rianna and Joy are still fighting as well. Given that there are a number of dead resistance members in the walls, I'm sure she doesn't have the manpower that she hoped." Tipping her head, Elisabeth considers. "All right… I need to talk to her anyway, and I'll get myself in there whatever way I can."

Her blue eyes come up to his face sharply at the information that Michelle has spoken to Richard. That she'll touch on with the other woman. But she also … there's no easy way. "The machine works, at least partially. We had an open portal. But there was something really wrong with it — it was resonating with the same harmonics that I heard in the Mallett Device. Something is … sideways. We saw them." Her voice chokes. "Richard… and others… on the Deveaux Building." She swallows. "They were waiting for us, working on their side of things. But…"

"It's probably the same problem we had at Pinehearst. We turned the machine on, and the portal vaporized and burned anything that went through it." Magnes stares down at his hands, considering. "I think that my new understanding of my ability might be able to help, I don't know. Either way, the point is, Michelle clearly doesn't think it's finished, and I'm sure that when I work on it I'll be able to see why, with what I learned back at Pinehearst. But…"

He holds up a single finger. "Something you have to understand is that this isn't just the Looking Glass, this is an amalgamation of the Looking Glass and the Mallet Device, it's both of them combined into one machine. The Mortimer Ray of this world built it out of salvaged parts or something."

"Yeah, that's pretty much exactly what happened," Elisabeth agrees. "Warren tried to shoot…. something… through the thing. Christ." She rolls her eyes and has to laugh, just a little. Even though seeing them there is still breaking her heart. "I don't think we're going to need your ability on this at all. Lynette's link to the Mateo in our world is solid. And now that we all have our abilities back, she says she can let them know we're still alive — they think they saw us drown. We can get messages back and forth. But Lynette and Mateo are pretty sure they can hold the portal if Michelle can keep the machine working with us instead of against."

When he says the machine is an amalgamation, Elisabeth blanches. "God fucking damnit, Warren." The mutter is under her breath. She might have to smack the Prime version of that man. Just on general principle. Blowing out a slow breath. "The main thing is… the portal creators are alive. And if Michelle is serious about helping us get the fuck out of here with anyone else who needs to come along…. she and I need to talk. You," she points at him, "need to be fucking careful because you're making split-second decisions and that's not the best way to keep people from fucking dying."

"I know, and I know that I can't really take things back, but, ultimately my plan is working, despite the consequences that came out of it." Magnes moves in to wrap his arms around her again, resting his face into her shoulder. "I knew that even without what happened, they'd probably hate me for getting myself arrested. But I had to be down here, I couldn't risk waiting or making some mistake."

Hugging him tightly, Elisabeth doesn't point out that getting his ass arrested, no one would have cared a bit. She simply sighs and murmurs drily, "You were doing so well at impulse control before we got here, you know." Dumb little brothers. She reaches up with one hand to cradle the back of his head, comforting him much the same way she comforts her daughter.

"If there's one fucking thing I'm good at, it's this," she admits quietly. "We'll pull of the situation with Don, but… based on what you just said, I'd be a little careful of Michelle too. I understand a lot better now the drive to get to your child… assuming that's her real goal… and the willingness to kill anyone who stands in the way of that child's survival. But there's a line between doing those things to keep your child alive and safe and doing those things just because you want the power for yourself. And I don't know which side of the line she falls on yet. Don — Mister CrazyPants apparently started talking to the machine seven years ago. Probably… about the same goddamn time the Device from Natazhat landed here." She grimaces.

"She said she wants her son, so, I think she might go far for it. But I want me daughter, and a part of what's making me desperate is wanting my daughter back. I can't keep seeing Elaine breaking down…" Magnes' breath is heavy, having held so much in on an emotional level for so long. "It's gotten easy to think clearly, to be less rash and impulsive, but seeing Elaine break over and over again, I just… I have to get home, I have to get Addie."

Elisabeth doesn't pull away from his hold — indeed, she holds him tighter. In the months … now years… since Addie and Manuel were taken, she's watched the toll it's taken on Magnes, on Elaine, on Lynette and Mateo, she's watched her friends' pain and felt her own version of it though she would never dare to compare it to theirs. "I know," she whispers into his hair as she holds him. "I get it, Mags. I do. But it's not that it's getting easy to think more clearly — you're just getting more desperate and letting the ends justify the means. That way lies Ezekiel's path… and I will not let you take one more step down that road, either," she tells him quietly.

"I'm sorry." is all Magnes can say, going silent.

Elisabeth kisses the side of his head, squeezes him tightly, and then pulls gently away. "Don't be sorry. Just be aware of the idea and don't let it consume you to that point," she tells him with a sad smile. "I don't ever want it to be you on the other side of a Natazhat situation." There is a deep fear in her that despite all that they're doing, this might not work. What becomes of all of them at that point, she can't even begin to imagine — won't let herself imagine. "We'll be working in the darkness. You do what you have to with Michelle to keep stalling the insane fucker, okay?" She reaches out to touch his cheek. "Please do not poke the crazy bear."

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