Scene Title Mnemosyne
Synopsis Greek myth. The personification of memory, and the pool in Hades opposite to the river Lethe, from which the dead drink in order to remember all that they had done in life.

Returned to New York City and facing renewed solitude, Hana turns to her memories for assurance.
Date November 5, 2009

A House on Staten Island

The house is silent; eerily so, as if it were vacant, empty, home only to ghosts.

In some ways, more than she generally cares to admit, ghost is a valid enough description of the woman currently within it.

By the terms of society, she ceased to exist before the close of 2005; no licenses, no passports, no hospital records, not even utility bills or bank accounts exist under her name for any of the four years since. People know her name, or a part of it; but a search of records on this side of the world would yield nothing, or the next best thing to it. Some know her face. But to most, she might as well not exist.

People are defined by their paper trail, their digital records, and by the networks they call family and friends. Bereft of these things, not much is left save ghosts. Save memory, in all its cutting and painful glory.

Hana Gitelman looks into the mirror, elbows braced against the edge of the sink counter, long brown hair fallen loose before her shoulders. The dark circles under her eyes attest silently to a lack of sleep; by sheer stubborn choice than the influence of nightmare, but lack nonetheless.

Is this what you would have done?

She turns the water on; hot enough for steam to soon begin condensing on the mirror, a small patch of gray-white moisture just above the faucet. Rinses her hands and arms in a largely perfunctory fashion; listens to the burbling noise for a few moments more.

Your enemies didn't hide behind pretty masks, the veneer of civility and good behavior. Everyone knew, when you were at war.

The faucet is spun off, and the Israeli woman pulls a hand-towel from its hanger. As she turns, hair falls away from her shoulders, two blue slashes drawn down the side of her neck tautly visible over the line of muscle.

If people now believe in a war at all, it's against the Evolved — not against the Company.

Dark eyes hard as agates, yet suspiciously bright in the dim lighting, she wipes her hands and forearms dry, sets the towel down on the counter.

No one knows about the war that has to be fought, and I can only fight as they do — in the shadows. From the darkness.

She steps out of the small bathroom into a larger, brighter room; lit directly by the flicker of a kerosene lamp, rather than by what reflected from the walls and around corners. To call the place Spartan is to be generous — but it does what she needs it to, which is so very little.

I'm running out of time. When they come for me, they won't have to search.

I cannot hide. I can only hit them first.

The Israeli woman — victim, soldier, analyst, agent, rogue, assassin — stops in front of the room's sole piece of furniture, an antique-looking dresser too heavy to be moved easily, forgotten during warmer months. Now that winter is nearing, it would be a candidate for firewood — if anyone remembered it was left in the house.

It's what you would do. It's what has to be done.

There is about as much on the dresser as in the room at large — the lamp half-full of kerosene, golden flame dancing atop a woven wick; a length of cord; two plastic cylinders, one hard and opaque, the larger nearly as clear as crystal, its contents gleaming darkly blue in the wan lamplight.

I know you're watching, somewhere. I know you're listening. You have to be.

Hana pushes the long ivory sleeve of her blouse up above her left elbow. The cord is deftly wrapped around her arm, tied off with one hand. She twists the metal needle securely onto the syringe, flicks off the opaque plastic sheath. And then she closes her eyes.


Tell me that I'm still following in your footsteps.

Looking down at the softly gleaming syringe, Hana sets the needle's tip against her skin.

Tell me that my memory remains true.

Tell me that I'm still fighting the monsters.

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