I'll Try My Best


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Scene Title I'll Try My Best
Synopsis About an upcoming interview.
Date October 7, 2009

Greenwich Village

In a time that seems long ago, Greenwich Village was known for its bohemian vibe and culture, the supposed origin of the Beat movement, filled with apartment buildings, corner stores, pathways and even trees. There was a mix of upper class and lower, commercialism meeting a rich culture, and practically speaking, it was largely residential.

Now, it's a pale imitation of what it used to be. There is a sense of territory and foreboding, as if the streets aren't entirely safe to walk. It isn't taken care of, trash from past times and present littering the streets, cars that had been caught in the explosion lie like broken shells on the streets nearest the ground zero. Similarly, the buildings that took the brunt of the explosion are left in varying degrees of disarray. Some are entirely unusable, some have missing walls and partial roofs, and all of the abandoned complexes have been looted, home to squatters and poorer refugees.

As one walks through the Village, the damage becomes less and less obvious. There are stores and bars in service, and apartment buildings legitimately owned and run by landlords. People walk the streets a little freer, but like many places in this scarred city… anything can happen. Some of the damage done to buildings aren't all caused by the explosion from the past - bullet holes and bomb debris can be seen in some surfaces, and there is the distinct impression that Greenwich Village runs itself… whether people like it that way or not.

Tragedies happen; what went on last night at Coney Island and the building collapse along with what it could mean for causes she supports, the cost it may ultimately drop on people with the SLC does weigh on Cat's mind. She's adrift in thought as she crosses the Village on the way to Old Lucy's. Thought on that very subject. How many people will die because Norman the Nutjob White brought down a building and caused an earthquake? How badly shredded is the value of martyrdom achieved by Mona Rao and others murdered by Humanis First? How much more successful will HF be in increasing their numbers, in convincing people the Evolved should be exterminated outright when hotheads continue to underscore their points?

Sarcasm forms in her brain with a single thought: Oh, yes, it's so much genius to engage in acts which cause fear to punish people who're already afraid of us. That approach will totally work, it won't make our enemies bolder and more determined at all.

Somewhere out of sight from the street, as her plan is to enter Old Lucy's by the back way, some of her own anger boils over. There's a sound, perhaps that of a foot harshly kicking trash cans in an alley behind the bar.

Spending most of the day rescuing people, even after being dismissed, at some point he simply started pushing his ability close to its limit, especially down in the subway tunnels trying to save trapped survivors, and Magnes just had to give himself time to recover. That time, he figured, was likely best spent at Delilah's birthday party. He's wearing a faded Superman t-shirt with an unbuttoned suit jacket loosely worn over it, a pair of black denim jeans, and black sneakers.

He has three gift boxes, all in white wrapping with pictures of Toadette all over them. One box is rather large, like something you'd fit a dress in, while another is significantly smaller and could possibly be anything, and another is even smaller, around the size of a thick book. "What're you doing here?" he asks as he walks into the alley after hearing the bang, giving her a quick once over. "I've been trying to reach you."

Her foot is pulled back, about to deliver another blow to some defenseless metal trash receptacle in loosing some of that emotion, but it stops in mid-swing. Cat nearly stumbles, but manages to catch herself. Gracefulness is brought into play as the foot is set down, and she spends some silent moments with her back to the man.

That time is used to calm her breathing, to wrap around herself the poise she customarily shows. The air that nothing can get to her, cause tears to flow or anger to boil over.

Eventually she turns to face Magnes, showing a calm expression as if she weren't just found doing that which she was doing. "Good evening, Magnes. I've a function to attend shortly." The boxes he carries are scanned briefly; it only takes seeing pictures of a female toad representation to know his purpose. "It seems the same function you're arriving for."

Another pause, to ponder his claim of attempting to reach her, before she offers a simple "I've been busy."

"I have too. I tried to stop it, what happened last night. I tried to shoot him, to kill him, but it was dark, raining, dusty, I could barely get a good shot. But I learned something yesterday, I learned something when I gained that resolve to kill someone, and then spending all day rescuing people from the collapse, and recovering bodies when I failed…" Magnes shakes his head, staring up at the sky as he inhales deeply.

"People like Emile Danko, who by the way has an APB on him for a number of things now, and Norman White, I can't let them go. I can't count on being able to arrest them, if I have a shot, no matter what the situation, I have to take it, two in the heart and one in the head…" He appears determined on the issue, having apparently had a very long time to think about it.

"Your choices in that regard are your own, Magnes," Cat quietly tells the man. "Killing weighs on the spirit. I wouldn't counsel it unless the person were actively doing something dangerous at the time." She won't say it, but the implication there, the way she speaks of it suggests she's ended a life. Or lives. Her eyes close, she forces the images of those she's faced and knows died by her hand out of her mind's eye. The version of Niles Wight from 2019. The man she shot with an arrow here in the Village. Douglas the HF captive less than two weeks earlier.

"If I see White again, I'm going to kill him. Every day he lives is another day he could kill hundreds, the same with Emile Danko. These people transcend being simply criminal, these people are evil, even beyond the bounds of John Logan." Magnes places a hand against the bar, giving it a fond caress before leaning his side against it as he places his face on it. "I need your advice for the interview."

She's silent as sne speaks, choosing not to engage Magnes in a debate on the issue of his police employment and through it government agency, the dangers of even one such person operating outside the rules in terms of power corrupting and not tolerating such things at any stage, no matter how small. Cat opts to neither condone nor condemn his intention. If need be, it can be dealt with another time.

She switches topics as he does. The interview. "I'm listening," is her simple reply.

"You're smart, like I said, you're probably one of the smartest people I know, so…" Magnes shifts against the wall, so he's leaning his back on it now, looking directly into her eyes. "Is there anything you think I should say? I mean, I know I can't be too obvious with any revolutionary stuff, but I figure if you had that kind of exposure, you'd say something important."

"I've performed on stage," Cat shares, "but not so much in an interview of that kind. Still, there are similarities. You want to get a point across, yes? To not let the reporter shred you up, not fall into traps his questions may create. If you suspect he's a hostile sort, be wary of questions that can twist what you say."

"Beyond that, as to the message, I think you know already what to say. That you believe in the Constitution. That Humanis First is a threat to people whether they have abilities or not, because once they had their way and exterminated us they'd look for some other group to target."

"And that the Linderman Act is a violation of the Constitution, people must demand it be immediately overturned. Same reasoning as with HF: If it's tolerable to treat us this way, it opens the door to doing the same with other groups, and this is America. Not Amerika with a K."

"I'll try my best. I don't think I've ever been interviewed by a reporter before, I'm used to just saying 'No comment'." Magnes sighs, staring down at the gifts, so much clearly on his mind. "Everything feels like it's falling apart lately, I mean, my personal life seems like it's getting better than ever, but it feels like the world is about to collapse in on itself, like the end is near…"

"You can't let yourself dwell on misgivings, Magnes," Cat advises somberly. "If you do, if you let doubt have too much roaming in your mind, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Things happen, because you believe they will. Remember this, always: History is on our side. If you paid attention in school, you know this. There is always evil. Oppression of groups comes from time to time. But the oppressors always lose in the end."

"It doesn't happen without sacrifice. It doesn't happen without blood and people toiling to make it happen, sometimes for generations. But they always get there."

"And so will we."

Something about what Cat says seems to ease him overall, his posture less ridged, breathing easing up. Magnes looks up from the boxes at her, with a hint of concern in his gaze. "And what about you? Aren't you worried? Don't you have some doubts? Or maybe I'm just not the person you'd talk about that to."

She lets a slight smile form as he asks that question. No answer is immediately forthcoming, and he might well remember what Cat was up to when he came upon her. The release of emotion, the venting of anger, but the clamping in place of poise when she learned there was a witness. That she does feel, does have a temper, but isn't one to let on such things to others.

"If I did," she allows a short time later, "I could hardly counsel you not to dwell on them if I were to let them be seen myself, don't you think?"

"I'm dating Claire Bennet, I like to think I know nearly everything about her as far as stress and doubt and regret and all those things are concerned. If you know half the things I know about her, all the things I keep to myself and try to help her through, then you should know that at the very least, I'm a good listener." Magnes offers in a reassuring tone, trying to be the helper instead of the helpee with Cat for once. "I won't push you, but y'know, I've kicked a few trashcans too. If you need someone to listen, or even a fly through the sky to clear your head, you just ask."

"Thank you, Magnes," she offers with a grin. Cat's feet move, a few steps toward the back door of Old Lucy's. There will soon be a party. While tragedy still weighs, one thing she believes is the need to celebrate what good exists, what happy times can be seized, despite other events. It's part of how she deals, avoids letting herself sink into the pit so many of her memories could become.

Moments later she tries to open the back door with a key and let him enter first. "Sometime I'll ask you about the Center and the helicopter. But now is not that time." But the key, she finds, no longer operates or even fits the lock. Cat's face shows visible surprise and a trace of annoyance for some seconds, but just as before her features return to a neutral expression and she heads for the front door without a word.

At the front door, she pulls it open for him to enter first.

"Just call me whenever, or even drop by, I'll get you free pizza." Magnes offers, but doesn't walk in before her, he instead reaches over to hold the door. "I uh, I just can't walk in before a girl, it seems so… rude, y'know?"

He has objects being carried, she'd been concerned he might struggle with them and the door, but given he holds it for her and declines to go in first Cat doesn't argue. "Thank you again," she offers, stepping through the opening.

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