Heading Back To Normal


claire2_icon.gif elisabeth2_icon.gif magnes_icon.gif

Scene Title Heading Back To Normal
Synopsis Claire, Liz and Magnes discuss the fact that a normal life is waiting once they leave the carrier.
Date January 19, 2010

USS George Washington

It's morning, around 9:30am, good ol' America time. Magnes flew ahead to the city a few hours ago, and now he's returning with a surprise. Walking into the mess hall, still wearing that gray NAVY sweatshirt, he has both hands behind his back, stopping across from her at the table. "I know we don't usually eat this kind of stuff because, well, gross, but, we're in America!" He holds two McDonalds bags out, one in each hand, the kind you get during breakfast. "I'm not really a McDonalds fan, but getting to eat ridiculously unhealthy American food again…" He shakes his head, sitting at the table and sliding her bag over. They're bacon Egg McMuffins, two in each bag, and a hash brown! "I thought about going home and just making you a pizza from scratch, but, it's breakfast."

Fingers drummed silently on the table as Claire waited for him to show, not stopping till Magnes shows up. While she didn't get anything to eat like he asked, the young regenerator has a half empty glass of orange juice in front of her. "Thanks," She murmurs softly, taking the bag and opening it, peering at the contents. Admittedly, she was so nervous about today, her appetite was non-existent, but…

Dog tag clink lightly against the edge of the table, as Claire pulls out a sandwich and opens it. "I had to admit.. It is kind of good to see go old junkfood. MRE's and the… I don't know what that sludge was that I got while a prisoner was… they make you appreciate food."

"In the jungle, we ate… animals. Don't ask what animals, but we ate them. Luckily I know how to prepare a freshly killed animal. Never knew Mister Panucci being so old fashioned would come in handy." Magnes sticks his tongue out in disgust though… weird jungle animals. He pulls his sandwich out, quickly unwrapping it and taking a large bite. "Togas, beer. Must have almost killed you to talk like that. Assuming you haven't changed that much. College is great and all, but I'd never expect you to suddenly turn into Stepford-Claire. I'll take Amnesia-Claire any day of the week."

Her small smile tugs to one side at the mention of Stepford-Claire. "Yeah.. well, I imagine that's what they want me to be." There is a small roll of her eyes, before she forces herself to take a bite. "Not sure what university I'll try.. but I figure I better try, since if I know my mom… she already knows I got the scholarship. Probably told my dad too." Lips press together briefly, "I should have seen of I can transfer it over to my little brother, Lyle."

"You always told me not to change and be something I'm not, and I'm gonna tell you the same thing. You don't have to be anyone you're not, not Stepford-Claire, not Old-Claire, not any Claire but the one you are now. You can go to college and try new things, but always be you, don't be who you think you need to be." Magnes lifts the muffin to look down at the bacon on top, tilting his head at the shape. "You taught me that, so, it's probably pretty good advice. And I've never met Lyle before, at least I don't think I have, not outside of the comic."

"Thanks, I'll try.. but I'm still getting use to the idea is new-Claire." She says softly around another bite of food. "Last time I saw Lyle was Costa Verde.. or… at least last thing I remember is Costa Verde. I'll probably try to go see them today or tomorrow. I'm nervous.. my mom is going to freak when she realizes that I don't have memories.. or that something has changed."

Setting down her food, she sighs softly, "Nervous about home, period. Having to explain over and over again why I can't remember people. It's.. going to be interesting." Claire states flatly, since in truth she didn't think it would be interesting, more nerve racking then anything.

"It's all gonna suck at first. Deja vu, meeting people who seem so familiar, but knowing there's a chance you've met or spoken to them before, but not knowing for sure, or if it'd even be alright to ask. But you know what? It gets easier, a lot easier. These first few months are just a hump." Magnes lowers his sandwich as well, folding and resting his arms on the table. "The idea of a new Claire is scary at times, I mean, I can tell you're not as shy and things like that anymore, but you're still you, just, with little changes." His cheeks flush just a bit, despite the fact that he didn't say anything weird, it's clear he thought something. "I'm kind of glad you're not so shy anymore, I mean, it erases those awkward moments we had sometimes. Except the one I'm sure I'm causing right now." he laughs lightly, though he's still a bit flushed.

Amusement tugs at the corner of her mouth as he seems to ramble a bit, "Probably because… things that might have seemed important and such to what I was.. Probably are not as important. Spend time in a war ravaged country as a soldier, being shot at everyday and then be a prisoner of war to a madman. Not to mention…" She hold a hand against her head like it's a gun. "It kind of puts things into a different sort of perspective."

"I hope no one has to go through what I did.. At least Noriko's memory of it is gone." Claire says softly, folding the paper over the McMuffin. Talk of her time there, tends to ruin her appetite, but then she's probably much thinner then she's ever been cause of the whole trip. "Either way… my view of the world has changed a little."

"At least that guy got what he deserved…" Magnes frowns, idly poking at his sandwich now. Apparently he's not a fan of listening to what she went through either. "But, I'm really glad you're alive. I'm glad I can still sit here and talk to you. Ability or not, after all this, I consider that a minor miracle. Knowing what everyone else lost, I don't even have the right to sulk about some memories, at least you're here."

Elisabeth slips into the mess hall looking for a cup of coffee. And maybe even a bagel. They're going to be docking today. She can't even quite fathom being home again. It seems so… strange. As she comes out of the line, she notices the two at the table and hesitates.

"I dunno.. either way, for the most part… I'm glad it's done. Even though a part of me is nervous about it, I'm glad to be home." A glance around the mess hall Claire adds softly, "Feels like a lifetime really." Blue eyes spot Elisabeth and gives her a small smile and fingers lift off the table a bit in a little wave.

"Liz is going to show me where I was living… So imagine I'll be doing that most of today, before I go see my mom." Claire pulls her attention back to Magnes. "Hoping my dad isn't there… though a small part of me hopes he is so I can get that awkward moment over with. I called him right before the mission. It was only a voice mail.. but I called him."

"Never met your dad either, I kind of tread lightly around that topic. Unless it's your mother or your brother," Magnes doesn't mention Peter, since, well, he's not supposed to remember that! "Discussing your family always got me pretty close to a broken nose. It's not that I can't understand why you don't wanna talk to your father, I just always felt like one day you'd regret not doing it while you could. And, yeah, we argued, but in the end it always helped somehow." He smiles, remembering, then turns to see what she's waving at, and offers a nod to Elisabeth. "Hey, come over here. I flew to New York since we're so close, and got McDonalds."

"Actually," Elisabeth says as she comes to their table and slides into a seat, "I'm going to take you to see your mother first. I have to see my dad and then put in my resignation papers at the precinct. Part of my deal. I'm not 'suited' to being a cop." She twists her face in an expression of disgust. Whatever. "I'll just be glad to dock," she admits softly.

"You know where she's living? I didn't think to find out where dad put her." Claire frowns a bit at her own slip up. "Been missing her when I call.. and if I had a cellphone in Madagascar.. it's gone." There is a grimace, before she gives Liz a smile. "Thanks for taking me though. She is absolutely going to shit a brick when she realizes something happened and will want to lock me away in a windowless cellar for 'my own good.' " There is actual air quote for that last part.

"I like your mom. She's like… your mom is like if apple pie were a person. She's amazing." Magnes reaches into his bag, grabbing an unwrapped bacon egg McMuffin, then floats it over to Elisabeth. "I've been wanting to tell her how that pie came out. You liked it, by the way, even if I did completely screw up the crust."

"I can find out pretty quickly how to get in touch with her," Elisabeth admits softly. "Just a couple of phone calls." And there's a mental note to talk to Cat about encrypted cells for Claire and herself. "I'm sure she'll just be so glad to see you that she'll work through it." She leaves them to talk about that pie as she at least attempts to nibble on her bagel. There's a small voice in the back of her head that nags at her 'not eating doesn't fix anything.' It sort of sounds like Abby. But sometimes it sounds like Richard too. Ah well.

"I can find out pretty quickly how to get in touch with her," Elisabeth admits softly. "Just a couple of phone calls." And there's a mental note to talk to Cat about encrypted cells for Claire and herself. "I'm sure she'll just be so glad to see you that she'll work through it." She leaves them to talk about that pie, setting the McMuffin next to her, as she at least attempts to nibble on her bagel. The though of eggs just doesn't quite make her feel well. There's a small voice in the back of her head that nags at her 'not eating doesn't fix anything.' It sort of sounds like Abby. But sometimes it sounds like Richard too. Ah well.

A soft chuckle at Magnes' description of her mom, Claire looks a touch wistful, "My mom makes amazing apple pie. She'll probably try to stuff a few pieces in me while she makes noise about all the weight I lost." Leaning back in her seat, Claire rubs a hand across her stomach. "Saving the world is a hell of a diet plan." The movement makes the tags around her neck rustle, two sets clink together. The ones given to her by the military and.. another pair warped from the intense heat of the incinerators.

Glancing down, Claire lifts a pair to look at them, an idea striking her, "Hey Liz.. while your down at the precinct.. can you pull some last ropes and find me the relatives of this guy?" She hesitates a moment, before pulling the tags from around her neck so the former police officer can see Donald Dixon's tags with his social written on them. "I wouldn't hand them over to the government. They would tell his family some for of bullshit.. I want them to know… what he did." The words are soft, as she holds the chain to her friend. "Kind of sucks that Noriko will never remember he saved her."

"It sucks that not many people will know what a lot of people died and did for them on this mission. But, we know, someone knows. People get to sleep at night not knowing just how close to death they came, because of those sacrifices…" Magnes looks over at Elisabeth, lightly tapping the table with one finger. "Apparently I'm resigning from the NYPD to pursue higher education. So, I'm getting the cop equivalent of an honorable discharge. Sarisa reminds me of a mentor I had, though she was a bit harsh. I'd tell you what her file said about my parents, but you'd both think I was exaggerating."

Elisabeth's head comes up as Claire asks that, and she looks … not surprised. It doesn't shock her that Claire would do this. More perhaps startled. But she takes the tags and nods slightly. "I'll see what I can do," she promises quietly. "My old partner might be able to look into it for me." Assuming Nash will even speak to her once things settle out. "Noriko will be okay, I hope. Honestly, Claire? This might be the best thing to happen to her. She was… in a bad place mentally. She was afraid of herself. She's not now, so… that can't be all bad." Elisabeth pauses and looks at Magnes, her blue eyes shuttered. Some part of her still has not forgiven him for his very selfish outlook on things the day after the explosion. Though he's apologized and she's waved it off, her attitude toward him is far cooler than the woman who tried to help him through the PD's intricacies.

"It's good that you're resigning," she tells him, not unkindly. "You don't make a very good cop, Magnes. Probably for the same reason I don't — cops have to stick to the letter of the law. Half the time you can't even be bothered to learn what the laws that you're enforcing are — you sort of just run about willy-nilly. And though your powers are damn useful, Magnes… Maybe in a few years, if you still want to be a cop, you'll have the mindset to handle it." A little more real-world experience instead of life in comic books.

"I know it's better, but at least for his memory," Claire nods at the tags with a sad smile, "It sucks and I appreciate it.. just.. make sure I get those back, so I have something to give his family." A hand flexes a little at the memory, which seems one of the clearest, of trying to pull him out even as her own hands burned away to nothing. "At least I'll remember and Sanderson.. if she didn't talk to Rene."

Catching a glimpse of her clothing, Claire can't help but chuckle. "Mom will thing I joined the military." He comments brush a few crumbs off of BDU pants. "So use to the dress code for the mission it'll be weird to put on some normal clothing."

"If there's one thing this mission taught me, it's that even if I was any good at handling the other stuff, it's the losses… I don't think I'll ever be able to handle that. This mission opened my eyes to something no one ever really told me. They always said 'Don't get anyone killed', or 'You'll end up dead in a ditch somewhere', but I never really comprehended how much loss is in this kind of life." Magnes hunches over, grabbing and trying to nibble at his sandwich again, though he mostly picks at it.

"I'm not saying I'll pack it up and never use my ability again, it is useful, I do have a responsibility, but… I'm not gonna run out looking for trouble. If Claire needs me, if any of you guys need me, call, otherwise, I think I'll just try to live." He reaches into his bag, pulling out a hash brown to bite into instead. "I honestly hope I don't seem like a coward for this, but I really just wanna try being a normal guy… who just happens to know how to fly and move things with his brain."

Nodding slightly, there's actually sympathy in Liz's expression. "No one can prepare you for the losses. For the failure. You just have to… live through them. Work through them. I don't think you're a coward, Magnes. I think it's smart to realize that you have to focus on living for a while. Have some fun. Be normal." She smiles a little. "I miss normal. Sometimes."

"Normal is going to be an adjustment." Claire says giving Magnes a sad smile. "But I'm going to give it a try… or at least partially by trying to go to college." Grinning at Liz she adds, "My mom is going to insist.. my dad I'm sure too. We'll see. I don't think I can really do normal. It feels like there is still too much to do." A small frown creases her brow at that. "And your not a coward for wanting normal. Go have normal we all deserve it."

Magnes nods to Elisabeth, starting to tap the table again, seeming just a little anxious for some reason. "I know you're gonna have a lot of trouble 'cause of your memories and all, but, I just want you to know that I'm there if you need anything. How I feel about you hasn't changed, but I know you're not the girl I was dating, and I don't expect you to be. So…" He slides a hand over, though doesn't touch her's. "I wanna be your friend, who just happens to be head over heels for you. But, still, I don't wanna force anything between us, if it happens, it happens naturally. If you wanna know about how we were, I'm perfectly alright with that, but what I care about most is making things easier for you, and it's not fair for you to have an obligation to a guy you don't even know yet. If you like the guy you get to know, well, great, if not, we'll stay friends."

He turns to Elisabeth, as if looking for approval. "That was the right thing to say, right?"

There's a soft laugh from Elisabeth and she just shakes her head. "Ya did good, kiddo." She'd swear some days he's in middle school. He acts like the 15-year-olds she taught at Irving. Pushing back from the table, she takes a swallow of her coffee as she stands. "If you'll excuse me, I have some packing to do before we dock. I gotta get my gear and whatever's left of Richard's stuff together." There's a brief flash in her expression, quickly hidden.

There is an odd look on Claire's face as Magnes goes on, finding some of it a bit confusing. The whole situation is odd for her still. Her eyes got to his hand and after a bit of hesitation, she gives it a little pat, "Thank you, Magnes… for understanding." As Elisabeth stands, Claire nods. "I should get back and finish packing my own stuff." A little anxious to get things moving forward, even if she's cared to get back out there.

"Ah.. thanks for the food Magnes." Claire gives him a soft smile as she slides out of her chair to stand. Taking a moment, she sets her re-wrapped muffin in her bag and folds the top closed to take with her. "I'm sure we'll talk again Magnes.. once I'm settled in and have time to just…. process."

"Oh, wait, since you probably can't remember it anymore." Magnes reaches into his pocket, grabbing a pen, then scribbles a number down on one of the napkins, holding it out to her. "That's my number, call me if you need anything. I can fly right over to where ever. Or if you just wanna talk or whatever, just keep my number and call any time." He doesn't seem very sad or bitter about the situation like he was when it first hit him, he's had time to process and talk to people, and at least put himself in a somewhat good place with the situation.

She's alive.

"I'll talk to you both later. I'm gonna get my stuff and head to New York. Sooner I get off this ship, the better." As he's turning to walk away, he pauses and looks to Elisabeth. "And Elisabeth, if you wanna talk or anything, even though I know I'm not your first choice, you can give me a call too."

Pausing to look at the young man, Elisabeth nods slightly. "I appreciate the offer, Magnes," she tells him sincerely. "Be safe. And if you need anything, you know how to find me." Not like she's not in the phone book.

Taking the napkin, Claire takes a moment to look at the number, not finding it familiar at all before tucking it away in one of the many pockets her pants have. "Thanks… and I wish you luck in getting back to normal. And for what it's worth Magnes…" A hand rests on his shoulder when she starts to pass by him. "I am so very sorry about everything… for what you loss." It's like she apologizing for him loosing someone else, but in a way.. it almost is. The shoulder is given a squeeze before she leaves, hand sliding away.

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