Fit For A Quiet Life


abby6_icon.gif barbara_icon.gif huruma3_icon.gif

Scene Title Fit For A Quiet Life
Synopsis A quiet evening at the Garden leads to idle conversation between two Council members and a third.
Date September 14, 2011

The Garden

Vanity. Everyone has some. Abigail even, has some in her. Usually it applies to keeping her surroundings clean and doing a good job. Tonight though, as the curfew hour approaches and she's sequestered away in the Garden with Kasha upstairs, asleep in a portable crib and oblivious to the few people in the place, she's sitting on one of the old fashioned couches in what passes for a livingroom in the old house set back from the road and hidden by tree's and high walls. Slender fingers delicately apply cream to where bullet and scalpel sliced through her, an effort to make the inevitable scars as little as possible.

In this instance, vanity has a sister named hope, who will soon, in the near future, be shattered to pieces with the knowledge that there's no escaping scars. There's no electricity here, save for when a generator is turned on and right now, it's off, no need for it. Dinner already cooked, fireplace burning wood to ward off the evening cool now that Fall is coming and oil lamps keep things visible in the rooms that are being used. Abigail has set up shop in the Garden since she was brought here, helping to run it, when she's allowed to.

No electricity is only an issue for those not properly prepared for the perils of living life off grid. Which happens to befall even the best of us sometimes, but tonight, Barbara Zimmerman has managed not to fall prey to such follies. Too much light can be dangerous, but firelight mizes well with a small, hand carried oil lantern she carries as she walks down from the upstairs. It had been some time since she had been out to teh Garden, not since she had come out to meet with Sable and Koshka about abandoning the safe house for the time being, and making sure everything's still in place (never mind the fact taht it's been used, and recently), is a job she's taken upon herself.

Granted, it's kind of hard to do when there's a sleeping baby, but what can you do?"

"Do you need any help with that?" Barbara inquires as a step creeks underfoot. Not that she really thinks Abigail needs it, but it's certainly polite to offer, and at the very least, she holds up her lantern in teh woman's direction, offering a bit more light for her to work with.

Huruma, though not used to being coddled, has had some weeks to get back into the business that is her proper life, outside and far, far away from the Arcology and its glass halls. To be quite truthful, she forced herself back into the same routine she used before, or possibly even more than. She's been popping up everywhere, it seems. Enough that at points, different operatives swore she was in two places at once. Perhaps catching up to work and duty that she felt she neglected, through no fault of her own. The raid was only the start of it, before.

But now, she has some time to breathe. To stop and smell the flowers, as it were. The early autumn flowers don't give off as much as others, but the sparks of color are just as bright.

Huruma came earlier, her roguishness bringing her orbit back around to Abigail and Kasha, and to the weedled down Garden. It feels homely to her, though perhaps that is the African bones as much as her need for quiet. Shuffling her way in the rear door, Huruma's arms are full of sliced logs that she takes great care in setting down on the inside of the door, topping off the more dwindling pile. The logs are not far outside, but one can never know when some will be needed on-hand. When she brushes the debris of splinters off of plain flannel, the magnitude of quiet strikes her, and she almost breaks it clean through- but Barbara gets there first, pipping into sound and her nearness a mote in Huruma's senses. For now, she doesn't intrude- making sure the small pile of logs does not spill over occupies her hands. Ears and empathy, not so much.

"Nope, I'm good" She's giving her abdomen one last swipe, a pass over with her palm before wiping them off on her leg. "Maybe it won't look so bad a few more weeks from now" Not when the stitches only just came out not long ago. "Is she sleeping okay? She wasn't up? Didn't crawl out?" Territorial worry about her kid. "I think there's a hole in the roof in the back right corner, we'll have to see about getting up there and patching it up in the morning" Not that she'll really be allowed, but she includes the we because she's used to doing that sort of thing.

"Any word from the council about anything?" She's been out here, hasn't been back to the island yet or in real contact with others. An island unto herself in truth. You curl up in a corner and lick your wounds.

"Nothing of any import quite yet," Barbara laments, offering a look towards the back towards the back entrance as HUruma makes her way back in. Holding up the lantern so that it better illuminates the empath's face - you can't be too sure, sometimes - she offers a nod in her direction, motioning for her to join the rest of them. "I haven't spoken much with Catherine or Eileen lately, I'm afraid. Soon, though, I hope we'll all get to gether. See where things stand right now, where they want to go from here. If you're unable to attend, I can make sure you're the first to know anything that goes on."

Patching a hole sounds like a job for someone that isn't recuperating, Huruma thinks. She stacks up the last of the wood into some sort of order before winding her way across the back hall, where she slinks into proper view between the doorframes, and the lantern helps light her features into orange and partial black. Her nose wrinkles a moment, and it is visible even in low light. "That smells like carrion." Maybe not really. Huruma is more of the mind that scars help give oneself character. She will gladly tell stories about hers- and sometimes misses those ones she had from before she met any healers, or regenerators. There was a fascinating one right below her-

"Like a calm before a storm." Huruma's tongue clucks somewhat disapprovingly in her mouth, for her own benefit.

"It smells fine" Abby counters, the cap on the tube and rolling her eyes at the empath. Abby has scars. There's the slightly shiny patch middle lower of her chest, the tips of the wings on her back, distorted from shots fired in a flaming bar long ago. "I'll be able to go. I think the others here are just being over cautious now. I'll be able to travel" Long sleeved shirt is down, hiding flesh from sight and she eases off the couch to go liberate a stick of wood from Huruma so she can go toss it on the fire.

"I think it is a calm before the storm. Things have been going too easy for us" By easy, she means they got Huruma back, raided a camp, survived an accidental too close for comfort reconnaissance at Eltingville. THat's too easy.

There's a bit of an odd look on Barbara's face at Huruma's ascertation, at least the first part. She laughs a little, shaking her head as she settles down into a chair, the lantern set down on the enarest level surface. "It certainly won't double as an air freshener," she jokes, an amused smile on her face, "but I don't think I'll be finding it in Yankee Candle any time soon."

That smile doesn't particularly last, though, not once the conversation takes a notably more serious turn. Her hands fold in her lap and she sits up straighter, looking before the other two. "That's what it feels like, but a part of me stil hope that hopefully, we can curb something before it gets much worse." There's a pause, and a long sigh. "Or get out, if need be. It seems we might ahve the means for it now, if it's absilutely necessary."

Because God forbid anything go well for them, right? Huruma is prepared for some sort of feedback soon, though she has no idea what. It is written at least a bit in her spine, and how she has been carrying herself. Sleeping like a princess on a pea does no good for her back or neck, either.

"Out would b'nearer to a life than in." Huruma runs her tongue over her teeth before leaning on the doorframe to slide her boots off and put them along the wall. "If I could take all of you out, myself, I would." Not so great for the activism part of this. She was never big on politics itself. Influence it, certainly. The tall woman finds one end of the old sofa to settle down on, spine crackling just a little as she leans forward as she does so, hands sweeping past her toes in a rudimentary stretch. Less cat, more lazy. If that is possible.

"I will help with th'roof, by th'way."

"You would square us away in Madagascar with your family" Abby is certain of that. "I think we have two avenues of exit, if we need it" and there is no doubt, if things don't significantly change, that they will be likely making the move with the network to lands less militant and less gestapo regarding those who are evolved. The kitchen is open to the room they're in and the southern woman makes her way there with surer steps than a few weeks ago, to go gather what is needed to heat water, make something to drink for the residents of the house.

"I'll hold nails" She offers, re: the roof. "Of the two places we scouted, which country would either of you prefer?" Not that she plans to go to either if it boils down to it. Kasha, Italy, it's feeling more and more like a good place to go given that she knows the language.

"Madagsacar?" That certainly was not what Barbara had in mind, nor what she'd heard floating around from the recent travels overseas. Not taht she argues - a place to go to is a place to go to, there's no two ways about that. "THough I admit, I'd rather not just up and leave. Not until we're sure we have to." Of course, there's always the possibility that by then, it could be too late. That's jsut a risk you have to take sometimes. "I jsut hope if it does, it's somewhere far out of teh reach of those who want us," she says a bit bitterly. It's been just over a year since Thompson - an aggressive measure taken away from US soil. It's always had her a little on edge about the idea of moving on.

"Perhaps. Or th'mainland. Home again, after all these years, would be lovely." Huruma is absolutely not sheepish about Abby getting the picture right away- it was not terribly hard to see it there. "Madagascar is still torn, but the'rural land across th'channel does not care." Would be less likely that she would be able to convince people to live somewhat as they are right now, at the Garden. Beggars can't be choosers.

"Wherever it ends up that those I care for go." Is Huruma's vague answer for Abby's question. "I am not much for snow, however. After that winter, b'fore, I had my due fill of it. If I can help it, no snow. Or very little." She sinks back into the couch- and literally, as well- folding her hands over her stomach and imagining herself away into some foreign land with eternal summer and migrating rains. Ah, the Indian Ocean.

There's more than a few people, Abby is sure, will prefer a place where winter doesn't grab you by the short and curlies and holds on tight. "Well, I know you said you'd travel" Not settle down. "Huruma's son, and grandson are in Madagascar. He's a very fine gentleman, he grew up good" A compliment to HUruma if even her contribution was ensuring that he was raised by others who could give him what he needed.

"Hot chocolate or tea? There's some instant coffee here. I was going to head up and turn in early, with Kasha" There's no mass of chores to do here, no cooking for 70 people, there's a garden in the back with fresh food that hasn't overgrown in some places.

"I think you should give snow a chance," Barbara says a bit quietly, chuckling as she reclines a bit in her seat - it's a rare chance to get to lay back and really relax for a bit, even out here. Which is a nice, welcome change of pace from the norm. ALso, much better chairs than she tends to find out on Pollepel. The little briefing she gets on Huruma's family, though, gets a raised eyebrow from the postcog. "Really? I had no idea. Well, hopefully if I ever meet him, it'll be under the best of circumstances." Rather than the lot of them being forced out there byunfortuante turns here at home.

"Hot chocolate," she replies to Abby, tilting her head to the side a bit. "I wasn't aware we had either here, but it's been too long since I've had some." A look up towards teh stares - indirectly, towards Kasha - and then back to her mother. "Go for it. I can keep the evening watch down here for a few hours longer before I turn in myself."

Huruma cannot help but chuckle out loud, as Abby compliments Dajan as she does. It is her usual reaction, to either laugh nervously or to steel her teeth, when someone does. Even when she calls Juwariya, and speaks just a few moments to Joseph. His words always seem to stir her.

"Don'say that around m'grandmother, if you meet her. She will schedule a wedding." Huruma shifts uncomfortably and frowns, in the only way a granddaughter can frown. "I wish I were joking. Ah- same, here."

"I am still a married woman" Despite separation, the impending divorce and lack of a finger on her hand, Abby is still married by the law and before the justice. No other marriage for her until that little situation ever becomes resolved. Maybe a year from now. If things don't happen" She points out. There's a box, hidden under a counter and she brings it out, little packets of hot chocolate.

"Someone brought it over with kasha, and I am not going to harbor them or squirrel them away" She's gathering mugs so that she can arrange things in preperation for water to boil. "I think I'm going to stay here, keep this place going for now, till the exodus happens. When I was shot, it was the closest place available. Pollepel is too far away and Megan not available for instant contact. If someone gets hurt mainland, it's a lot easier to get from here to mainland or bring people here instead of Pollepel"

"I think that's good thinking, Abby," Barbara says with a slight nod "I suspect the hot chocolat will be appreciated by anyone who gets hurt, as a bonus." A smile creeps wider at that comment, turning her gaze out near the closes window. "I'll be sure to point anyone in need of medical attention on the mainland here, if it seems better. We need someone out here, anyway, and I believe the former caretakers have respectively gone missing, or are stuck up in Eltingville." Barbara lets out a little sigh at that, sinking a bit more into her seat. "If you need any help here, don't hesitate to let myself or anyone else know, though."

The thing that gets Huruma is not that Abby still thinks of herself as married, but that she didn't denounce anything that the dark woman said. Note to self- think twice on letting Etana meet Abby. Maybe thrice. "At this junction, chocolate is chocolate." Huruma finally murmurs, trying to settle back again. "I think you are made for the quaint life, Abigail." You will be fine, this says, in different words. Huruma thinks it best to stay neutral there.

"I will stay at least a couple of days, I think. I need t'stop moving around and sleep."

"I'm made for some kind of life, that is for sure" Abigail mutters. Quaint life, she could live that. A busy one with the Ferry and filled with patching up hurts and watching friends pass, she was made for that kind of life. "I am made for some kind of life and I won't rightly know what kind until I live it. Till we have all lived our lives, we won't rightly know what kind we are made for." SO there.

And she wouldn't probably deign to let Etana marry her off to Dajan. Till death do you part, paper or not, false identities or not. That is how she was raised.

"I don't think anyone's made for a quaint life, not anymore," Barbara replies as she shifts in her seat. "But I think we're all good at taking what what we're given and making it work, at least." THey have to. Fingers drum on the armrest, still looking out the window for anything that may catch her attention. "Thank you, huruma, for sticking around. This place works better with two people here, as far as I can tell. I'd like to hang around for longer than a day or two myself, but…"

Whatever thought was going to come after- it seems to be caught in Huruma's mouth, as something comes out in a murmur. With Barbara peering outside, and Abby busied with the mugs, the warmth of the fire leaves a small opening for the African woman to slip off into a doze. The couch is too comfortable, and her back is too tired. The haze of half-sleep draws her in like a moth into a cobweb. Her eyes are closing, but for a few moments she speaks as if still totally self-aware.

"You are very welcome. And I was raised in quaintness, I can go back…" Perhaps she thinks she is still fully awake, but whatever the case, it folds in on her quietly.

"See, Huruma and i were raised in quaintness. Different kinds, but there we go. What about you barbara? Where were you raised?" Abby divy's up water when it finally boils, Hot cocoa for her and the triplet, hot water and tea for Huruma, figuring the woman said she needs sleep not caffeine. "I know you didn't go through life like your sisters" The one who was a stripper vrs the one who was a power pearl wearing, ponytail bearing politician brown nosing blonde.

This wasn't really the turn Barbara had expected, her smile fading a bit as she shifts a bit uncomfotably in her seat. She's never really talked with anyone about things like this, so it still feels a little weird. "I was raised with The Company," she says after a few moments of silence. "So, quaint it defintiely was not. Not that I haven't seen my share of it, thanks to living in Thompson," And that, certainly, is the truth. If Thompson taught her anything, it was how to live a low key life.

A little like her long gone days of trying to stay awake in school, actually. Huruma's head jerks a little to keep her eyes open again, and she suppresses a yawn. She pries her eyes open enough to take stock of the conversation, and the moods inside of it. "At least you had that much, yes?" More than some. It was a prison, certainly, but does a child know that? Huruma draws her legs up, flexing her feet in socks, and watching the fire from over her knees, now. There is a hint of her smile, though.

"I never thought I would miss low-key, after leaving it behind. Imagine that."

"All of us, it seems, had not ideal childhoods" Hers more sedate than the others, but with healing in your hands at the cusp of puberty, that was not the ideal and norm childhood either. Fingers woven through the handles, she's shuffling in her own sock feet, dispensing the drinks along the way till she can sink down beside Huruma on the couch, thigh to thigh and shoulder to shoulder with the dark skinned woman. "Huruma was raised by lions, Barbara by scientists and I by God. My what a trio we present hmmm?"

Chuckling a bit, Barbara shakes her head in response to Abby. "It wasn't all scientists and pin pricks. I mean, I guess it wasn't normal, but it was still nice, much of the time. I didn't even realise I was being tested, at the time. My father was smart about things like that I guess." Her smile returns, looking up between the other women. "We do make quite the group, though. Imagine if we had Eileen or Catherine here as well."

Huruma is warm- maybe running a bit warmer, due to being cozy; she offers a lot of heat instead of the early autumn chill. She doesn't go hooking her arm around Abby, at least. For the moment, she stays there on the sofa, watching Barbara and in turn, her ward, through that corner of her eye. "I should say that I gave th'lions a run for their money."

"Like some sort of deranged …Charlie's Angels. I am not even sure if that cuts it." But if they are quite through- "Don'let me fall asleep here. I don'want t'be in th' way." Neither Abby nor Barb would be able to move her, so it is best to play it safe.

Stupid question incoming. Likely to prompt Barbara or Huruma to try and explain it. It's unsurprising coming from who it's coming from and will likely garner a good laugh for the trio before Abby ghosts up the stairs to sleep with her adopted daughter and likely drag Huruma with her. Till then, they'll have to explain.

"Who's Charlie's Angels?"

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