Many Possibilities


fox_icon.gif gillian_icon.gif

Scene Title Many Possibilities
Synopsis While spending some time by herself during movie night at the Lighthouse, Fox gets something new to keep her up thinking about at night thanks to something Gillian says.
Date June 6, 2010

The Lighthouse: Girl's Dorm

It's just before bedtime and Fox is curled up at the head of her bunk in her pajamas, sipping from a glass of water while looking intently at the inside cover of a leather-bound journal; upon closer inspection, one can see that a family photo has been affixed there.

It's not quite reading time. A good amount of voices can be heard outside in the main upstairs room, laughing and talking, watching something on the television that finally works again, while others might be heard downstairs— but Gillian noticed one laughing voice was missing, and slips into the door frame to look inside, spotting one of the newer members of their family on the bed by herself. "Didn't like the movie? It's hard to find something people seven through sixteen can all enjoy," she admits with a hint of a laugh, that fades off as she sees… a family photo. The door closes behind her, cutting off some of the talk and laughter, as she steps deeper inside. "That your family?"

Fox glances up to Gillian and nods silently and sets her glass aside on the nightstand. "My mom arranged to have this photo taken even though we didn't have any family to send Christmas cards to," she explains. Behind them in the photo is a fireplace with three stockings hung. She scoots up to a slightly better posture, and tucks her bare toes under the bedcovers. "The movie was okay, but I guess I had other stuff on my mind."

"Yeah, a couple of the kids fell asleep, and I'm going to have to get Brian or Doyle to carry them in here," Gillian says, sounding amused, which is different than being distracted… "And pictures are taken more for you than other people anyway, I think." As she says that, she moves over to the bed, to settle down where she's not curled up, so she can look at the picture a little. "Do you want to talk about them? Your parents?"

There's a long pause before Fox answers, "No, not yet. I'm not really sure what there is to say about them, really, but I end up crying whenever I think about them too much." She pulls the photo out, offering it to Gillian, and closes the journal, setting it down beside her. "I've tried to write my feelings down like you suggested," she says. "But I've only filled one page so far. The same thoughts and words keep coming up, so there's no point writing them down multiple times."

The photograph is taken, and Gillian also ends up looking down at the journal instead for a moment. "You'd be surprised how many times I repeat myself in my journals. If it keeps coming up, maybe there is a point to it." Scooting back into the bunk, so that her back touches the wall and she has to slump a bit to keep her head low enough, she looks toward the girl, "If you can't write about it, maybe you need to talk about it. It's okay to cry at times like this— in fact you may need to do that too."

Fox wraps her arms around her legs and leans forward, resting her forehead on her knees. "I was angry when they left that night. The roads were just starting to get bad, but my dad thought he could handle it. He said he lived through some bad winters in Buffalo and was used to icy roads. I keep wondering if I could've done something more to persuade them to stay home. I know it's not my fault, but…" She trails off.

"You're right. It's not your fault— but it's easy to blame yourself. Your actions were the only ones you could have controlled— I speak from experience," Gillian says, reaching across to put her hand on top of the girl's head. It comes off as sisterly, more than motherly, and it moves down to shoulder after a few moments. "Tell me about them before. What did they do? What did they like? What were the good things that you remember?"

"My mom was an invest…invest…", Fox begins, stuck on the word. "…A kind of reporter. You might've seen her on 'Eye on New York'. She was always working in her office at home, making phone calls, researching issues. It turns out she had the ability to tell if someone was lying to her. It wasn't completely accurate, but she said it helped her a lot. Like when she was researching that company that had dumped chemicals into a pond that a neighborhood and school were later built around. Heh. I learned when I was really young that I couldn't get away with anything either. She made me honest."

"That's an ability I wish I had," Gillian admits with a smile, taking the fond conversation just like that, fondly. Investigative Reporters. Her eyes stay on the picture of the woman, trying to recognize her, but she mostly read print, but watched news. "Being honest is a rarity sometimes. I think most people are liars in some ways, even when they don't do it on purpose. Sometimes they're lying to themselves just as much."

"Most of the kids here seem to have figured out their powers already," Fox observes. "But they've mostly been good about not rubbing it in or anything." She thinks for a moment. "Of all the girls, I think I like spending time with Hailey the best," she comments.

"Hailey's a good kid," Gillian admits with a smile, not minding the switch of commentary. "And she needs a good friend right now— outside her puppy. I can't imagine what my life would have been like if I'd developed my ability as a kid. I didn't really know I had anything at all until I was twenty, but I had two younger siblings, in the family I was adopted into, and both of them had already developed abilities. When they were like eighteen and sixteen…" So even non-biologically, she was the late bloomer! "But I was in my secretive stage. It was just before a lot of people knew about abilities, right around the Midtown disaster, but even after it took me a while before I even admited I could do anything at all."

"I still don't know what it is that you can do," Fox says, curious, never having knowingly seen Gillian use her power. She sits up and leans back into her pillow. "I hope my ability turns out to be something fun, like Collette's, or useful, like my mom's. I guess I'm a bit jealous of the others," she admits, looking down to her lap.

"What I can do…" Gillian trails off as if trying to think of how to describe it. "Whatever ability you develop— I will be able to make it stronger. Like Lance can usually only extend his inaudibility to two other people, but with me pouring energy into him, he could probably extend it around five or six of you at least, if not more. It's called Augmentation, or amplification, or— Power Battery person. I'm the one people call on when they need to do more. It's not as cool as some— and it's annoying that some people only bother to talk to me when they need a power boost."

Fox turns her head to look up at Gillian. "I never thought of an ability like that," she says. "Does it happen automatically just by being next to someone, or do you have to focus on that person for that to happen? If the former, it could work against you if you came across someone with an ability who wanted to hurt you," she realizes.

"Supposedly it's pretty rare," Gillian says with a shrug, laying the picture down on top of the journal finally. "It used to always be on, but I think it was weaker then, too. I had to learn to hold the energy in and only release it when I want to, but I fail if I'm hurt. And there's been good and bad, yeah. I used to have tattoos, for example, but someone healed me when I got really hurt and no more tattoos. My ears aren't even pierced anymore. But it can be bad, too. Really bad. Most the time I can control it, though. So no matter what you get, I should be okay."

"I'm sorry to hear about your tattoos. Did that remove any cavities too?", she asks, ever curious, trying to think of a positive side-effect. "The ability to heal others must be the best ability to have," she muses. "You could help a lot of people. Though it would draw a lot of attention to yourself too." She bites her lower lip in thought.

"Nawh, I still got my fillings," Gillian says, moving her tongue around to touch them as if to make sure. It's not something she thinks about too much. "Healing is both a blessing and a curse, yeah. I knew someone with healing, and it pretty much went like that. People tried to take advantage of her. Try to take advantage of me too, but— whatever you get, I'm sure you'll find a way to use it."

"I wonder if someone with healing powers could fix my dyslexia?", Fox wonders aloud, though softly. "Though maybe it's a selfish wish." She leans back into her pillow again, and pulls her feet out from under the covers to stretch her legs out in front of her. "I guess I just have to be patient," she says ambiguously, since it's uncertain whether she's referring to dyslexia or her latent power.

"You never know, maybe it's a side effect of whatever it is you're going to get," Gillian says with a smile, moving to stand up so she doesn't cover up too much of the small bunk bed now that the girl's stretching out. "Could be your body trying to tell you that you're not meant to be reading books, you know?"

Fox looks up at Gillian oddly when she makes that suggestion. "That would be weird," she says quickly. "Thanks, now I'll be awake all night trying to think of what power my reading problem might possibly be linked to," she says while rolling her eyes, but then she shakes her head, smirkng.

There's a laugh. Staying up all night thinking might be worse, if it wasn't better than staying up all night crying. "Maybe you can write down what you think of. So then you can look back and go 'well I never thought of that' when it happens," Gillian says, obviously choosing another use for the journal than the ones she's already struggling with.

"Maybe my power is to be a pyromaniac, and my purpose in life is to burn books instead of read them?", she jokes. "But sure, I'll try writing down the possibilities."

"I used to be afraid of that— someone walking into my library, getting augmented and burning the whole place down," Gillian says with a laugh, as she moves to the door. "I hope it's not that. You aren't going to burn down my books, kid!" The accusation is a joke, and punctuated by the door opening, to the sudden sounds of voices on the tv screen.

So many possibilities. Both good and bad. Only a matter of time.

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