gillian2_icon.gif helena_icon.gif

Scene Title J'Adoube
Synopsis I adjust: used in chess when touching a piece without intending to move it. Neither of these two seem to be willing to budge.
Date July 27, 2009

Old Dispensary

On the outside, this sprawling multi-level complex has not seen use in many years, its walls covered in greenery and stone exterior and glass windows showing evidence of disrepair. Surrounded by a chain link fence, a drive leads from the street to a large dock, and around the back one can expect to find more sprawling greenery that eventually leads to a concrete drop off into the Atlantic Ocean.

Passing through the chainlink fence and into the dispensary will reveal that the aged and crumbling outside is a facade. The loading dock is kept clear for the most part of everything save vehicles and supplies, though a section has been quartered off and transformed into an open workshop. The dispensary itself has been transformed into something akin to a makeshift dormitory, complete with common areas, a sizable kitchen and eating area, with various rooms converted into bedrooms for the residence. One room has even been set up as a makeshift clinic, amply stocked with supplies.

The back lawn and garden of the dispensary is surprisingly well tended, green and lush during the right months. Vegetables have been planted in accordance to season closer to the building, though someone has indulgently planted a plots of flowers - notably sunflowers - here and there. Further out, the ground drops a little and makes it to a concrete edge from which opens out into deeper water of the Atlantic.

It is still raining. At least in the general proximity of the Dispensary, it is still raining. Helena is out in the garden, seated in the green grass that is laid out in front of the vegetable beds, her face turned up to the rain with her eyes closed. She's not cold, and it's hard to tell if the water running down her face is tears or rain or both.

Any plan to go in and talk to Eileen (or possibly Gabriel) fell to the wayside. After standing in the rain for a while, the rain moved on, giving her a brief chance to dry as she walked back down the long road leaving the Garden. Each step has to be quick. No longer with any defensive abilities, she's just got herself, and Staten Island is a dangerous place. When she makes it close to the Old Dispensary, the rain clues her in. But it's getting too dark to try for another safehouse, so she keeps moving. Approaching the garden, she spots the weather manipulator, as she gets soaked yet again. Make up smeared, tears invisible, she turns to step into the building, drop her bag in a dry spot before everything is ruined, and then… approaches the garden once again. "I don't have to ask if you're okay or not…"

Helena's head had been turned up to the sky, slowly her head lowers and her eyes open so she looks at Gillian, and it's still impossible to tell if it's tears or raindrops. She seems on the verge of saying something at several different moments as they pass, but they never make it past her lips. And so she just silently stares at Gillian, unable to find words that are worthy of leaving her mouth.

"I didn't know he was there," Gillian says quietly, able to speak more, at the very least. It's quiet and husky, and she's trying to avoid shivering. Already soaked, it doesn't much matter how long she stands. 'But I did follow you." For a moment she might sound sorry, but she looks away, eyes closing as she tilts her head upward and lets rain go down her cheeks. "In some… stupid fucking part of his brain— I'm sure he thinks he's trying to protect both of us, or do what's best for both of us, or— whatever. But he's wrong."

"I know." Helena says, her voice slightly croaked from disuse. "There's no stopping him when he makes up his mind, though. Even when he's wrong and stupid and says all in one breath how much he knows he needs others and then says he's going to go off on his own. Only this time, off on his own means with Gabriel."

"Figures he'd only do that now," Gillian mutters, shaking her head, and moving to settle down close by, but not too close. Just to give the indication she's staying, but out of touching range. The knot in the back of her head is carefully kept, now. The tears have stopped. "I expected him to break my heart if I ever saw him again, but fuck— I wasn't planning to back off, or give up on him, not unless he told me he was lying to me about the— whatever. I guess I know how you feel… I lost Gabriel recently…" And that may be closer. "Peter was… hardly mine to lose."

"But he didn't." Helena says without looking at Gillian. "He said he had feelings to resolve for both of us. And you've had feelings for him for a while now, haven't you?" Now Helena finally does turn her head to face her. "So did you really lose Gabriel, or did you give him up so you could see if you had a chance with Peter?" Her tone could be venomous, but it's not. If anything, she has the dispassionate air of someone discussing siege tactics.

"I don't even know how long I had feelings for him," Gillian mutters softly, rubbing a hand over her face, though it doesn't do anything to get the water out of the way. "Peter wasn't why— I got an ability from one of the former Vanguard guys staying at the Garden. I went there cause Eileen sent a message that Gabriel was shot— I sat at his bedside for a while and… I don't know. Things should have gone differently. But I followed a path just like what we followed today— and he was killing the plants to try and heal himself. I had regen and I offered to… When we touched I saw things. Things that he did. Things that I already knew… and things I didn't. I told him not to touch me," her voice shakes for a moment. The rain masks the tears, but the blinking of her eyes gives her away. "And he told me to… to let him go."

"I'm not sure we should have this conversation." Helena says, with a calmness that might seem a little off-putting. "You deserve better than the ugly things I want to say to you, and I deserve better than to succumb to the urge to say them. You're not giving up on him. Neither am I. But now isn't the time for a tug of war, either. Right now I don't know what I'll do, and honestly, I don't think either of us wants to play this game right now. Do we?" Would you like to play a game? Would you like to play a game of chess?

There's a laugh, a small snort, and Gillian stands up, running her hands over her arms. Not everyone is immune to the rain. "I'm going to go find a dry place to ring out my clothes and change into some of the ones left here." She doesn't move very far away before she adds on, "I'm not going to be very active in Phoenix for a while. I promised Brian I'd help him rebuild the Lighthouse, and that's what I'm going to do. I was going to do this before now." Though now something's changed where she's not quitting entirely. "But you're right. I'm not giving up on him either." A game of chess, just like the one in one of her dreams, where they played until they both only had a king left, and had to call a draw.

"Phoenix could help with that." Helena points out. "Offer manpower, some finances, maybe. The Lighthouse is someplace Evolved children can feel safe. That's worth a lot. I'll let Brian know." Then, "I'm glad you're not leaving Phoenix." This is not a lie.

"I think Brian's planning to find his own resources, but I'll definitely let him know that," Gillian says quietly, reaching up to rub her face again for a moment. "I know you left out a lot about the future. Peter doesn't know about it yet, unless he found out from someone else. But I know I had a son." There's a pause, as she steps back a bit. She does sound thick, but not nearly as angry as she'd been at Peter when he walked away. "And I know you didn't tell me."

Helena shakes her head. "The Peter from that future asked me not to. At least, not to tell our Now Peter." She looks back at Gillian. "How would things have changed if I had?" she asks, simply enough.

"Peter asked you not to tell him anything about who he was in the future?" Gillian asks, eyebrows raising slightly, but then she shakes her head. It does kind of sound like him, even if she wants to kick that part of him. She takes a few steps back. "It wouldn't have changed anything. I know I would want to know about my future, though. I'd want to make the future matter. Either as a learning experience, or— fuck, whatever." There's a pause. "Anything else you think I might want to know?"

Helena's brows lift a little in turn. "Making that future matter means I'd have to be dead. I assumed you'd not want to go that far, though granted, Arthur did make you try to kill me at one point."

"Futures can matter without repeating them," Gillian says with narrowing eyes, shaking her head a bit. "If we've learned nothing else from all these things we've gone through— the future changes. But that doesn't mean we can't learn from it." There's a pause. "How exactly did Arthur try to make me kill you?"

"Some sort of subliminal command." Helena said. "You augmented me and I more or less became the conduit for the weather of the entire Eastern Seaboard. You have no idea what kind of power you have, Gillian." She shakes her head. "The second time you tried to shoot me. Teo stopped you."

"Yeah, I'm powerful— important," Gillian says softly, moving away a few more steps toward the building. There's a pause before she adds, "You know, if I just wanted to get you out of the way— I wouldn't have thrown myself so hard at Arthur. Even before my clone sent a message that Peter wanted me to protect you for him." Just a thought to drop out there, before she moves and walks away.

"You really do want to get me out of the way." Helena volleys back. "But you have integrity as to the line you draw in the interest of fulfilling that desire. We work together well, and I actually can see how we might have been friends once…but the future changes."

"It does change, yeah," Gillian says quietly, shaking her head. "I accidentally invaded one of your dreams while I had a dreamwalking power. Yours and a bunch of other people's. You probably don't remember it, but— whatever. It won't be happening again, at least." There's that much. With that, she continues toward the front door, without hesitating anymore.

"What did you see?" Helena calls after her, curious despite herself. Maybe she remembers, maybe she doesn't.

There's a pause. Gillian hesitates in her steps again. "Your mother's garden. A forest. A chessboard. And you were looking for Peter. But you got distracted and the monsters in the forest tried to get you. I was caterpillar, then a butterfly, then a fairy." Most of it she wrote down in her journal, so that helped her remember it as vividly as she did when she had a perfect memory.

Helena furrows her brow a little. It resonates in a familiar fashion yes, but the details are hardpressed for her to recall. "I don't remember." she confesses, and then asks perhaps foolishly, "What do you think it meant?"

"I don't think those dreams were prophetic," Gillian says softly, honestly, even with a hesitation. They could be, honestly. She doesn't know if Eve's ability meshed with the dreamwalking she got from Ghost. "Maybe you do get distracted, though. I don't know. Maybe it's impossible to be both a Queen out to save the fucking world and a girlfriend."

"Dreams don't have to be prophetic." Helena agrees. "But they can be symbolic. They're our unconscious trying to tell us something." She trails off a moment and then, "There's this woman." she says suddenly. "Out on Roosevelt Island. She's Evolved, and she reads Tarot cards. She's amazing."

"Roosevelt Island?" Gillian pauses for a moment, perhaps because she's never even been there. There's a lot of places even in New York she's never been. "That island isn't very big, is it?" A quiet moment of interest. "Where?"
Helena offers a description of the small shop, noting, "The woman's name is Hokuto. She might be able to give answers. Or point in a direction." Note Helena doesn't inquire as to the question, or the destination of said direction.

"I will need to pick up some books for the Lighthouse," Gillian says, after hearing what kind of shop it is. She doesn't have her perfect memory, but— how many book stores can there be on Main Street in that dinky island? "Thanks," she adds after a moment. It's weird to say thanks to someone she knows she's going to be squaring off against, most likely.

Who knows where the future will go?

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