Just Like Last Time


alia_icon.gif elisabeth_icon.gif

with aura_icon.gif

Scene Title Just Like Last Time
Synopsis When Richard came back, she brought coffee too!
Date January 22, 2019

Secure Facility, Kansas City, MO

The week's been jammed with history lessons, therapy sessions, debriefing sessions, figuring out how to jump through the legal hoops to get declared not-dead and in general just trying to get her head on straight and take care of her daughter. Elisabeth isn't entirely sure why coming home is actually harder than jumping to the other worlds, but there's sure as hell a lot more paperwork.

Sitting in the dining room with the remnants of her own lunch in front of her, Liz's head is tipped low to listen to what the small child next to her is saying.

" — an'en they askeded me questions about the liberry in nana's world. What it looked like and did I like it. An' I told 'em I love the liberry! Da ladies there were nice and I hope the crazy shooty man din't get them." She looks worried about that.

"No, baby. The crazy shooty man didn't get them," Elisabeth reassures her. The Vanguard might have… but that's not something the little girl knows about. So Aurora looks pleased.

There is a sound. A knocking. A knocking at the front door. Those security conscious would peek out to see an Alia with her red-bishop ended scarf wrapped around her neck, a smile on her face, holding a drink carrier with three cups (Two large, one small) and a small bag of some kind.

Some traditions, after all, demand to be kept. Even if it’s only for the second time. After all, they have to get started somehow. And right now, a cheerful moment is something everyone could use.

Aurora looks toward the door and then up at Liz. The adult has driven home the rules about opening doors. When it does swing open, Elisabeth is sort of shocked into immobility for a moment, if only because the sense of deja vu is so strong. "Alia… I thought you were still in the hospital," she blurts, and then she steps back from the door because it's rude to leave someone standing there while you gape at them. "Come in!"

Her blue eyes are a little worried as she reaches out to take the drink carrier. "Should you be out yet? Richard said you got hit pretty good." He'd been worried about the technopath. It's only after the drink tray is set on the table by the little girl and her hands are free that Elisabeth hesitates and then reaches for Alia to hug her. "Jesus it's been a long time." Not as long as one might think, if only because of the last world, but still…. That Alia wasn't this one.

Alia smiles. “Patched up. Just need to keep bandages clean.” She motions to -under- her scarf, which she keeps on. Then she hugs Liz. “Too long. Brought coffee, hot cocoa, donuts?” She grins. “Welcome back to the timeline.”

The fact that Alia is crying with joy isn’t something she feels a need to hide. The fact that the doctors are annoyed by her not wanting to hold extra sedately still for -reasons- is likely not helping their mood, but it’s doing -wonders- for hers! “Welcome home. We’ve missed you.”

With her arms around Alia, Elisabeth has to fight a wave of complex emotions. She's dealing with a lot of those right now — relief, fear, doubts. All of those things hit her periodically, along with significant anxiety. As she draws back, though, she smiles through her own tears. "I missed all of you too," she says, chuckling softly. Reaching up to wipe at her tears, though, she fans her face, flushed with the effort of holding all those things back. "You are a sight for sore eyes." She's the first person, other than Odessa, that Elisabeth actually knows from this world.

"Come on, sit," Liz gestures. The chair on the other side of the table from Aurora is empty, and the little girl is watching curiously, no longer even nibbling on her goldfish. "Alia… meet Aurora." Aurora, for her part, is studying Alia closely.

Alia smiles, and sits down, before pulling the smallest cup loose, and offering it to Aurora. “Alia. Nice to meet you Aurora.” Alia offers ina soft, welcoming tone. “Hot cocoa?” She offers to the young one. Well at least Alia isn’t trying to be clingy towards the young and likely very confused girl since she has no idea about the other her.

There's a brilliant grin as Aurora first looks to her mother for permission and then takes the cup carefully with both hands. "Hi, 'Lia. I knowed your name already. You're still pink! It's my favoritest color besides purple an' blue." She pauses. "An' green." She apparently has a lot of favoritest colors.

Elisabeth smiles faintly. "What do you say?" she prompts lightly. "Fank you!" is chirped around the cup before Aurora sips from it, and Liz moves to slowly sit down and really look at Alia. Her blue eyes take in the scarf and the paleness of face. "You should definitely get more rest," she observes softly. "But I'm really, really glad to see you."

“Like we know how?” Alia teases, ever so lightly. Though she looks at Aurora. “You are welcome.” Her voice is a color now? That’s…different. Still, she offers the cup of coffee to Liz. “She..” Alia pauses and considers how to ask what she wants to ask, then just smiles. “Can you tell me about me, Aurora?” Alia is, it seems, curious… And perhaps dreading a little to ask what she is asking after her encounter with that armor system’s internals…

Elisabeth's smirk is the answer to that question. Of course we don't. Although the weariness in her eyes may also indicate that she's ready to. The blonde takes the coffee and opens it to sip, wondering idly what Aurora is going to pop out with.

The little girl puts her cup on the table carefully after drinking some of the warm chocolate, a small brown milk-moustache at the corners of her lips. She purses those lips, poking one out a little as she thinks about what to say. "She din't talk a lot. She was nice, though. One time she gibbed me a piece of her orange. An' we read books at the liberry. Sometimes she couldn't find the right words."

“… Sounds like me.” Alia grins a bit. “Though. Haven’t been to the library in far too long. Maybe we fix that later?” The technopath is honestly relieved sounding. And she can see the exhaustion in Liz’s eyes. “… You are home. Breath, Liz.” She pauses a moment. “Paperwork hell?” she finally deduces as a guess as the only thing that could possibly be causing -that- look at this point.

“… I maybe help?” If nothing else, Alia can likely fill out forms and check for errors faster than most.

"Paperwork hell is the least of it," Elisabeth admits quietly. "I won't turn down any help that's offered, but take it easy, okay? I want you able to go home when the rest of us do, not stuck in a hospital cuz you overextended yourself, hmm?" She smiles. "Being home is… harder than I hoped it would be," she confesses. "They won't let me contact my father yet, so … I guess that's the first place I'm heading when we get out of here. There's a lot to tell him." Her mother being in the room next door is definitely one of those things.

She glances toward Aurora and then smiles, leaving off anything else she might have said about the situation. Instead, she says, "Aurora getting to meet and spend time with Richard has been pretty incredible, though. They're getting along pretty well, I think."

Aurora pipes up again. "He looks funny sometimes. Like he's gonna cry. But I told him I'm not mad no more." He probably looks like that anytime the child smiles at him. "He telled me I gots a brother and sister! An' we're gonna live in a big building wif my own bedroom!" She hasn't had that since they left her home. "I get to have a bed an' daddy said I can paint my room." She seems excited about this.

Alia just smiles a bit. “Using head, won’t hurt.” Okay, so long as she doesn’t push to a nosebleed. Doing paperwork shouldn’t. “A room of your own to paint?” Alia grins. “THat’s special indeed.” She grins a bit, then looks to Liz. “Paperwork, and I try share story, Richard and an arcade?” Alia smiles.

After all, the worst part of this whole mess is over, right? Hopefully.

Meeting Alia's eyes, Elisabeth quirks a brow. "An arcade? Like… video games?" She sounds both skeptical and amused — because if that is what Alia means, that's going to be a story worth hearing.

Aurora, bored with the conversation, climbs down and goes over to the bed where there is a set of books sitting next to a woeful-looking stuffed animal. It may have been a dog once — now, well… he's rather like the Velveteen Rabbit just before he became real. Well-loved. The little girl pulls it into her lap and informs it, "Okay, Bossum, where we were?" Because that's what mummy always asks!

Liz watches her go over and shakes her head slightly with a grin as she sips her coffee again. Then she turns back to the technopath. "So I definitely want to hear about Richard and an arcade. But first… tell me how you're doing? I know there was a war. It sounds like afterward wasn't so hot either. But… you're working for RayTech. Did you stay with Richard that whole time? How are you liking what you do now?"

She needs the touchstone that hearing about her friends' lives provides. She's missed so much, right now she's not sure where she fits.

“Stayed with. Helped stop a few footballs. Been Chief Techy since it started.” Alia ponders. “Finally got a computer Richard can use?” She sounds proud and bemused by this at the same time. “Good to do things helping things get to a better normal. Slow going, though.” Alia admits. She lets her attention drift towards Aurora on and off, smiling a little. “… worthwhile. And yes. Arcade. Tricked to a down day. Burn out prevention.” Alia laughs a bit at the memory, though she looks horribly nervous. “No fancy restaurants or such to drag him to.” Alia trails off on the thought and is proving to be just as awkward with words at times as her alternate self.

Once again that brow quirks upward and Elisabeth grins faintly. "You found a computer he'll use? I'm shocked." The memory of the last time she saw Alia makes her chuckle inwardly. A hammer. Jesus. Alia's need to move slowly through her words doesn't bother Liz though.

"I'm glad he had that. He still pushes himself harder than he pushes anyone else when things are going on," she observes quietly. There's a smile as she notes the technopath watching Aurora. "She'll likely bring you about a million questions in a few minutes. I swear I think she makes a list of them before asking one."

Alia grins. “Voice controlled.” She giggles a little. “… Don't mind questions. How we learn.” She smiles a bit, “and yes, he does. Particularly when…” Alia trails off, considering. “Once convinced you were alive…well…” Alia shrugs. “…just wish we could have found faster, safer way home for you.” Alia hasn't heard the story but can guess just from expressions and what little she does know of alternate timelines.

Elisabeth laughs outright at the voice-controlled computer, which brings Aurora's hazel eyes back up. But the amusement eases to something more neutral. "I wish I could have found one too." She toys with the coffee cup. "The price … was very high," she says softly. So many people lost along the way, some she knows and some she doesn't. "I don't honestly feel like there was a choice. Not after the kids were taken." She might have given up altogether, had that not happened.

Shrugging slightly, the audiokinetic clears her throat a bit. "All I can do now is figure out how to live a life that was worth the cost."

Alia considers what to say next… then grins as she tries to lighten the mood. “Well… you'll like one invention the Rays assembled. Called it the Banshee.”

She looks startled. "What?" Elisabeth pauses and then asks, "Oh God…. is that the sonic weapon he had? Did he really?" She grins. "Well, good to know my ability was useful to all of you. Now I'm obsolete, right?" She's teasing, definitely.

Aurora pipes up and asks, "What's ob-sleet, Mummy?" The little girl puts her book aside and pulls Blossom into her lap.

Hooboy. Here come the questions.

Alia laughs. “Far, far from it.” She grins. “Think we're closer to replacing me.” Then there's the question, and Alia is set into giggles anew.

It feels good to laugh again.

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