Falling Apart and Back Together


elaine_icon.gif quinn_icon.gif

Scene Title Falling Apart and Back Together
Synopsis Elaine has an emotional breakdown over recent events and Quinn picks up the pieces and puts her together again.
Date June 30, 2010

Quinn's Apartment, Gun Hill

It's early afternoon and Elaine has spent most of the day out. She's only now returning to Gun Hill, and instead of heading straight to her apartment, she stops at Quinn's, knocking gently at the door. She lets out a deep breath while she waits at the door.

Initially, there's no response. Not even a sound of scuffling inside. Silence reigns from Quinn's flat, something highly unusual indeed.But finally, just when someone might give up and knock again, the door flies open, Quinn on the other side.

"Elaine!" She exclaims, taking a step aside so that Elaine can step inside. "What's up?" It's only been a few days, but assorted things already little the floor of Quinn's Gun Hill flat is already strewn with numerous things - some clothes, papers, a few CDs. The same decent clutter of last aparment, just far more spread out. Her black couch sits in the middle of the common room facing the window and rather large, though not exquisite TV, numerous DVDs and boxes piled along side it. A table sits adjacent to the kitchen area, but otherwise the common area is rather empty. Tour posters for The Delgados, Mogwai, and Oasis are hung on the wall next to a closed door, as if to indicate here be music. Adjacent is another door, half open and revealing several more boxes, CDs and notebooks spilling out, as well as a very simple bed.

Elaine is trying to make it casual. She steps inside, offering Quinn a smile, glancing around to check out how the apartment is looking so far, and everything is just fine. Well, until she tries to talk. She swallows hard. "Quinn.. can I have an ear? I've been out thinking all day and I think I need a fresh perspective."

That‚ doesn't sound good. An eyebrow is cocked, a worried expression on Quinn's face as she motions over to the couch. "Yeah, totally. Somethin' go wrong? Magnes isn't being a total jerk is he? Because I'll really kick him."

"Can you please?" Elaine asks, almost pleadingly for a moment before she heads over to the couch, drawing her knees up towards her chest. "I just. I don't know. I don't know that I can.. I mean, I don't know what I can do about.. any of this." She lets out a deep breath. "I'm sorry, I'm sorry.. I'm not making any sense."

"Whoa, total meltdown," Quinn observes with wide eyes. The door is closed and locked, and immediately she slides on to the couch and slips an arm around Elaine. And not in her "I'm going to fake flirt with you" manner, but in a serious, comforting manner. "What the hell happened? No need to make sense, just‚ clue me in, if you can."

Elaine takes in a deep breath. "My first question is if you're a secret agent or some crazy thing like that. Like, I know everyone has secrets, but I mean, secrets. Because if you know any of this stuff going on, we're going to be having a very different conversation."

"I-What?" Quinn regards Elaine with a very confused expression for several moments, and then slowly a grin appears on her face. "Waaait. You an' Sable are playin' a trick on me, aren't you? So, what, is there where I find out Magnes is a spy and he got shot or somethin'?"

There's almost a smile on Elaine's face. Almost. Then she lets out the breath she didn't realize she was holding. Her friend is either playing dumb or genuinely has no idea what's going on. "Magnes has secrets. I knew this. It's not like it's a big surprise. He would always be talking all hush-hush with people, people would show up in the apartment, hell, you saw that.. you know how Magnes is, he likes to think himself a superhero. But he told me he was gonna try and stay neutral in things. He was gonna save someone if he needed to, if lives were in danger and it was serious, you know.. when you see a car accident you don't walk away, that kind of thing.." Yeah, it seems she's serious.

Quinn's actually on the verge of laughter, but as Elaine continues, just the most serious expression on her face, she stops very abruptly, eyes wide again. "I try not to pry into people's lives unless it's really important, but I was pretty confused after that shadow came by the other day. But still- I mean‚" she stumbles a bit over her words, scratching the back of her neck. "so, seriously, what did Magnes do?"

"Some guy showed up, gave Magnes a mission, you know, like a spy. Two days. He's on a team, he's going and helping out, and Magnes isn't even healed. He was gonna stay neutral and then he goes and is gonna help out with some plan where people very well may die." Elaine's lower lip is quivering now.

"Ygraine stopped by yesterday and we talked.. we were talking about Magnes, how he was doing stuff like what he did to get to the gig, and she was worried too. He's really got this hero thing in him really bad, like he can just keep going… and I was telling her how it bugged me, a little, how he kept everything secret from me and I had to be the 'ordinary girlfriend' of the superhero. Ygraine said I could ground him, be the one to make him want to be Magnes and not some superhero." Now her lower lip is drawn in between her teeth, chewing on it lightly.

"When that guy was there, last night, I went back in the bedroom, and I listened. Magnes got his whole mission, and the guy told him that he could find a place for me helping in whatever group it is. Something I could do, if I was Evolved.. he said it so that Magnes wouldn't have to keep me from whatever he was involved in. So he wouldn't have to keep secrets."

She might be tearing up, but it's unclear, even though her words sound as if it's difficult. "He said no. He wanted me to have an ordinary life. A normal life. But it wasn't just that.. he refused because he said Claire was involved and he couldn't deal with seeing someone else he loved in a life like that." A swallow. "I don't know how he meant it, but… it hurt. He told me he was over her. She doesn't even remember their relationship. I told him I'd wait and be okay with him being in love with her until he could get over her… and then he said he was. He said he was over her. I could let him love some other woman because I was willing to wait for him for as long as he needed but he told me he loved me. He told me he was over her."

It's a lot to take in, but as Elaine's condition begins to deteriorate, Quinn does the simplest thing she knows. She reaches out and, if allowed, pulls the girl close, resting her head on Quinn's shoulder. "What in the world," is all she has to say at first, shaking her head. "I… I don't understand how he could do something like that. At the very least, if he's doing crazy shit, he should trust you about it." Her brow furrows, and she shakes her head. "But that sounds bizarre. Does anyone else know about this? It sounds like he's mixed up in some right nasty business."

Her nose wrinkles, and she runs a hand up and down Elaine's back. "I really do need to kick his ass if he's treating you like that, though. You're better than that, Elaine."

Sliding her arms around Quinn, Elaine takes in a deep breath. "I don't know. Maybe I'm just being stupid and making a mountain out of a molehill. He even asked me if I was okay when he came back to the bedroom, if I had any questions or anything. I acted like it was no big deal and he just went to bed.." She peers up at Quinn a little bit. "Am I over reacting? I feel like I'm making a big deal out of something small, but it feels big.. it hurts like it's a big deal and I dunno. I didn't want to talk to Sable, cause he was her friend first and I didn't know if she knew anything about it or… I don't know if anyone knows anything. Magnes never told me about any of these things he keeps secret.."

"It sounds like a big feckin' deal to me. Not t' speak ill of the bassist or anything, particularly since I haven't gotten t' know him as well as I have you an' Sable. But secret meetings and groups? That he actively tries to keep you out of? That's pretty fucked up." Quinn sounds decidedly resolute in this, her eyes narrow as she holds Elaine close.

"I was hoping when I told him not to be daft and think things through, he would apply it outside the band too," she notes, with a shake of her head. "Carryin' a flame for someone else isn't such a bad thing. I'd love t' see my old girlfriend again, if I could. But…" She trails off, shaking her head again. "It doesn't sound right."

"I told him I'd wait it out, I'd stick with him until he was over her but.." Elaine sighs. "And.. with all this, even if it was something risky, it's my life, isn't it? Why does he get to decide how ordinary and normal my life is?" She lets out a breath. "I don't know, Quinn. I just feel like someone threw all this stuff in my head and then shook it up and I don't know where to fit the pieces together. I'm just.. he is doing something stupid, isn't he? That's not just me, is it? I mean, he could barely stand up before getting tired and he wants to go sneak into somewhere to rescue some guy and stuff.."

A look of consternation crosses Quinn's face, exhaling sharply. "Tie him down. Take his comics. But keep him from doin' something stupid. Goin' out and rescuing some guy? I know he likes Batman and all, but… the boy had to shoot himself with adrenaline the other day."

And then she leans back, scratching the back of her head. "Be straight with him. Tell him you don't take t' lyin' about that. To the secrets. To him running off and playing hero. Be honest with him. If he won't listen.. well, there's open space here, for a bit."

Elaine frowns. "Do.. do I stop him, though? Should I just let him go and make him promise that this was the last time?" She swallows hard. "I feel like I'm betraying him. I dunno. Being a hero is all Magnes is about, though. He.. he likes doing it. I can't just tell him not to do something that makes him feel happy." It isn't until now that the tears start falling. "He should do it if he feels it's right and it makes him happy. And if he wants to be in love with Claire still, that's fine. I'll just be there. I always am."

"Elaine, I…" Quinn herself frowns, leaning back with a hand to her chin. "How do I say this without sounding like kind of a bitch… Basically, if you feel like you're not being true to him, and he's not being true to you, something's got to give." She nods, as if she thinks she's got it right. "He likes doing it, but not t' be selfish, but if you'e gonna be his girlfriend, he needs t' think of you to. If he's not, then… why are you his girlfriend?"

Just saying that made her feel bad. That wasn't the message she wanted to send. At all. Still…

Elaine sits back a little, tears still in her eyes. "I'm.. I'm just not sure what's right. I'm.. I just want things to make sense. I want him to hurry up and go on that stupid trip and then come back and I suddenly just want things to be okay and like they were. I just.. I don't want to sit around and not know if he's coming back. I don't want to feel like that. I thought I could just be great and pretend it doesn't hurt but it does. He scares me a lot because I love him and I don't think I've ever really loved anyone since I lost my parents. And he's fucking putting himself in danger and what'm I gonna do if he dies?"

At that, Quinn scoffs and shakes her head. "I don't think Magnes is that stupid. I'm sure he'll be fine." She wrinkles her nose, and shrugs. "A little worse for wear, but…" she adds, honestly. "When he gets back, lock 'im in your flat until he's willing to talk about it. You shouldn't have to pretend anything, and he should know that."

"I know. I was going to talk to him this morning, but I choked up. I mean, I know he's not going to get himself killed, but… there's always a chance, and I don't wanna have a conversation like this right before he does something dangerous. I'd rather not distract him.." Elaine shakes her head. "I just… I don't want to bring him down and make him stop doing what he loves, but anything could happen. No one expected the bomb to blow up and everyone to die… just because he's gotten lucky before doesn't mean he won't die. He got hurt on something as simple as the robbery at a blood bank and Magnes could barely lift his arms afterwards he was so exhausted." She shakes her head again. "I'm sorry, Quinn. I'm just… I'm freaking out."

Shaking her head, Quinn draws Elaine back in. "No need t' apologize. I just- it's like I said, I think you should talk t' him the moment he gets back. He makin' some pretty big breaches of trust, and no one should have t' deal with. You don't have to make him him stop doing what he loves, but Jesus he could at least be more sensible about it."

Elaine leans in, offering a bit of a sigh. "You're right, I guess. I just… he really tries to be a good boyfriend, I don't want him to feel bad over all of this. I'm sorry, I know I don't need to apologize, but I feel like I do."

"Well, you don't have to make him feel bad. Just be straight forward, and don't be a bitch." Quinn nods at this, letting out a sigh of her own. "I don't think he's tryin' to be a bad boyfriend or anything, and I don't think he just is. But it sounds like he needs a little kick in the ass to get him a bit further down the road." Or something.

"That's a nice way of putting it." Elaine laughs a little bit, probably the first time since she came in. "It'll be okay. I'm sure it will. I'll make sure we talk." She looks up. "Thank you, Quinn. Means a lot that you'd listen to me whimper selfishly like this."

"Pssh." Patting Elaine's back again, Quinn chuckles. "I don't mind. Otherwise I wouldn't have offered an ear t' begin with, right?"

Elaine sits up a bit, smiling gently. "Thanks. I mean it, though. You're a good friend." She clears her throat a little, attempting to regain composure.

"I'm glad t' hear it. Means I was able to help." As Elaine sits back up, Quinn releases her from the embrace, though a hand is kept on her shoulders. "We can do something today, if you want t' take your mind off of it for a bit."

Elaine shakes her head a little big. "You don't have to do that. I'm probably gonna keep him company. He was sleeping when I left, but…" She looks over. "Tomorrow's when I could use the distraction. Ygraine and I are going on our date, so I think at least she'll distract me some of the time, but Magnes is gonna be out late, doing that thing. I could definitely use the company then."

"Aw, come on. It'll be my treat." Her lips quirk into a smile, and she laughs. "And then tomorrow we can finish our date. Two lovely ladies in one day sounds like a good… day." Where was that thesaurus, anyway? Fluttering her eye in an exaggerated manner, Quinn rubs Elaine's shoulder. "I'll do whatever you want."

Elaine nods after a moment. "I'd really like that." She laughs a little bit. "Thanks. Besides, I do like the idea of being spoiled with good company all day." She grins, leaning in to hug Quinn. "I'm just gonna keep thanking you until you shut me up."

"I- you might not appreciate my way of shutting people up,' she replies with a wink and a laugh as she pulls Elaine into a stronger hug. "Awesome. I think it'll be a right good time."

Elaine waggles her eyebrows, not that Quinn could see, but the sentiment is audible in her voice. "Who knows." She laughs, hugging tighter. "Ygraine and I are going to go take her motorcycle and go up into the mountains and have a picnic and go swimming. I'm really glad I get to hang out with her. She's gonna help me see if her dad can get any scholarship help with me to go to college for linguistics."

"Wow." There's a somewhat genuine hint of surprise in her voice. "That sounds really nice! I hope you have a lot of fun, that sounds like a corkin' good time!" An enthusiastic nod, and Quinn sits up a bit- somehow, she manages to avoid really letting go of Elaine while doing this. "Ygraine and I still haven't gone out… well, not the auction date. I think." She gives a sheepish laugh, reaching back to scratch her neck.

"So, College for linguistics sounds pretty cool," Quinn continues, an eyebrow cocked, out of sight of Elaine as it might be. "That'd certainly give you somethin' to work for while Magnes is out being stupid."

There's a laugh. "Uh oh. Careful, Quinn, she's a married woman. Don't have too much fun on your date." Elaine smiles a little before she nods about the college thing. "It'll be nice. We were musing about abilities and how mine might work and stuff. Ygraine was actually jealous of my ability. Her dad does linguistics in Edinburgh and so we were gonna talk to him and maybe get a recommendation and get people interested in me."

Quinn chuckles, leaning back a bit. "I'm aware," she remarks dryly, though there's a distinctly sly smirk on her face. "I'm still not sure I quite get what your ability does. You just learn languages real fast like, right?" Just, you know. "I can see someone being jealous of that. But man, a recommendation? That's pretty awesome."

"Well, Ygraine was suggesting it could also be kind of like a form of telepathy.. my brain translates the desire to communicate and understands it. But.. I always thought it was more… understanding the formulas of language. Like, how things come together. The rules and stuff. I can understand how they work so my mind puts them together faster." Elaine nods a bit. "But either way, I can understand languages really quickly. Couple days, maybe. It's nice with Ygraine speaking French. Finally have someone I can chat with."

Quinn listens, but the only real response she gives is a nod and a blink or two. "So… right, you learn languages real fast like." She smirks, a lot of Elaine's explanation having gone clear over her head. "So, have anything in mind for what you wanna do tonight? Or tomorrow, even."

The redhead laughs at Quinn's summary of her ability, and she nods. "Yeah, I think you've got it down." She tugs on her lower lip with her teeth as she thinks. "I'm good with anything. Although I haven't seen a movie since Kendall, Magnes, and I went to see Toy Story 3, so we could always go see a movie. Or we could just go out and go dancing or something. I'm sure you know the best places to hit. I could wing-girl."

"We'll have t' see about that. Now that I think about it, I probably have t' work, since Melissa's out of town… but you could always swing by, and we can really do something Friday. Hmm, I work tonight too…." A hand moves to Quinn's chin, looking thoughtful. "But Ygraine and I went to a nice jazz bar the other night, you might enjoy that."

Elaine nods. "Oh, no worries then. I might stop by and peek at you at work, then. It was all kinds of fun being around at the auction even before the actual auction started. You're a good DJ."

Quinn waves a hand dismissively, but still blushes a little. "It's really not that hard. But if you're gonna come by, you should dress appropriately." A finger points at Elaine, and then her head tilts, a playful smile on her face. "I could take you on the same shopping trip I got taken on, if you've got a bitt'a cash t' spare."

"That I might be able to manage." Elaine giggles. "Gonna make me look all gothy then?" She grins. "And don't discount your skills… some people go to clubs just for the DJ. Like, y'know, me."

Quinn laughs, hopping up from her seat. "You might give a girl the wrong idea, with things like that." She winks to Elaine, and then offers a hand. "Wanna go on, then? Since you'll be gone with Ygraine tommorow. Not sure what else you had planned tonight, besides takin' care of Magnes."

"Nothing, really, just that." Elaine insists. "Didn't have plans. Well, unless you count the ones I have with you, I'm free as a bird." She winks back. "Besides, I like giving girls wrong ideas. It's fun." She accepts the hand. "Shall we?"

Pulling Elaine up, Quinn just shakes her head and laugh, tapping her foot a few times before a mirthful gaze centers on Elaine. "You're absolutely terrible."

"I know. And you like it." Elaine's grin is wide and mischievous, and she appears to, for at least a moment, have not a care in the world.

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