Mon Cher


wf_graeme3_icon.gif wf_remi3_icon.gif



Scene Title Mon Cher
Synopsis For Graeme and Remi, his homecoming is happy but bittersweet nonetheless; the dream leads to the beginning of what might be resolution between the two.
Date August 17, 2011

In Dreams

It's a lovely fall day out here. The leaves are turning vibrant colors, and while it's been getting colder, it's good here. Safe, with no lack of supplies. Canada is a good place. It makes Remi content that she has raised her son here all of these years. He's grown into a strong young man, as well, with a stamina to match his father's, and perhaps surpass him. There's so much of Graeme in Liam.

Enough time has passed, and mourning has since ended. Mother and son have since come to terms with the fact that their family will never be complete again. These days, they speak very little. All of their talking is done through glances and thoughts, a special bond that only a telepath can have with her son. They've always been close, but the past two years have only served to bring them closer.

Liam is going to town on a large tree, hacking it down into a respectable pile of firewood. He's still got a lot to go, yet the young man has hardly broken a sweat. Remi looks on, quietly reading a book as she watches the marvel that is her son at work. Occasionally, the two will share a glance, a smile, but no words hide the sounds of the outdoors around them.

Only the sound of the axe cracking into the wood can be heard.

Graeme's ability has not stopped his hair from turning gray, nor stopped the passage of time from wearing tracks and wrinkles into his face and skin, but for all of that, the same passage of time has not gotten to slow him down over the months while he has made the arduous, dangerous trek to Canada. The man who rounds the corner and walks up the path looks less like the father and life partner who last visited, and more like a stranger, but he pauses in the same place that he always has, just five steps past the bend to admire the porch and the swing that he built on one of his infrequent trips up there, that's still there. One hand reaches up to push at his brow, the same old habit, and a soft smile grows on his face and echoes in his thoughts, and the corners of his eyes.

No, not so little anymore, I cannot call him little. He might hit me, he might have my old temper. There is pride in the thought at seeing Liam, and then Graeme begins to walk up the path again. Flannel lined pants and a thick sweater and a thicker jacket further obscure Graeme's figure, but it is when he speaks that there is nothing else left to doubt.

"Remi, mon cher," he says, quiet but audible, looking over at her. The same old nickname, the closest to love he's probably ever said, to anyone. "My, my, look at you." As ever, Graeme is a creature of habit, predictable. "Liam my boy, come here, show me how you've grown. You're a grown man now, look at you." The frame backpack is as abruptly put on the ground as Graeme can manage so that he can move more quickly. He'll pick it up later.

Blue eyes are upon him, even as he walks up. Remi's always been sharp, but over the years, she's only gotten sharper. There's no wariness in her eyes as she looks upon the man. Liam is a different story, peering at his father with squinting eyes, trying to determine a distinguishable face. As Graeme speaks, Remi raises to her feet, marking the book and setting it in her chair.

A glance between the pair removes the doubt from Liam's eye, and a smile even forms upon the man's features as he bounds over to his father. "DAD!" Despite being nearly 18, he still can't help but get monstrously excited to see his father. This is only enhanced by the fact that for the past two years, he's been convinced that his father was dead.

Remi holds back for now, allowing her son the moment.

Graeme wraps his arms around his son's shoulders and holds the young man close. "Liam, you have grown," he says, smiling wryly. "Look at you, you're taller than me." He reaches to tousle the younger man's hair, a lighter colour than his own was in his youth. "Or maybe I've shrunk." It's not truly a self-deprecating joke, though the tone may suggest it.

"Is it your birthday yet?" A pause answers his question. "No, no, that's in a month or so, isn't it. Forgive me, I've been traveling a while, it's a longer road from New York than it once was." A hint of sadness tints Graeme's voice, but he does not allow it to stay there long, taking a step back to truly look at his son, before another brief hug.

"Now, may I greet your mother?" It's teasing, as usual, and with slower steps, Graeme walks over to the porch, arm wrapping around Remi's shoulder when he gets there, before he kisses her on the forehead. It's a rare display of affection, especially in front of Liam. "Mon cher, I am so sorry," he says, quiet, though not so quiet that he's hiding the words from his son. "I would have come sooner. But the road is long, these days." There is still a southwestern drawl to his words, even the few that are spoken in French. "And it is one-way." Another pause, and he turns towards Liam again, including him in the discussion. "But you two are more important."

Liam grins. "Next month, yeah. It's okay…I'm just glad you're alive." He hugs back when hugged, all smiles. Then, as his father goes to greet his mother, the young man nods, stepping back to his axe and going about cutting up the wood. The boy is a workhorse, and here at the Ferryman stronghold, he's put to great use, doing things that would wear others out much quicker than he'll ever tire. Just like his father.

Remi watches as Graeme approaches, a faint smile on her face. As he moves closer, she reaches out, and wraps her arms around him, squeezing him as tight as her thin arms can. "I thought you were dead…" Her own accent has faded slightly over the years, and her intonation of English is nearly perfect, she's been speaking it for so long. She still sounds distinctly European, but it isn't so pronounced as it was before.

Then, she pulls back, and slaps him. It was inevitable, after two years of thinking he was dead, for her to strike him. "I thought you were dead, Graeme! Why couldn't you come back with the rest?! When we didn't see you…when they told us it was the last exodus…" She holds back for a moment longer, before wrapping her arms around him.

"I missed you…" This last part is whispered up to him as she buries her face against his chest. He may stink from his travels, but it's his stink.

Graeme's response to being slapped is tempered, the very act that at one point might have caused him to walk off for days and such in his more rash youth now causes him no less trouble than anything else. And for a long moment, he is silent, raising one hand to brush her hair from her face, the other arm around her, watching his son out of the corner of his eye before bending to kiss the top of her head again.

"I was needed there," he says. "I wanted to come, but…" The rest of the reasons are trivial, silent, left to be discussed later and indoors and away from prying ears. For now, he is simply as usual, a man of few words. "And I can travel by myself, it was not my last chance to go. I always have, I always will. The journey was for all of those who couldn't, and I was of more help to the people who stayed behind."

She stays close, huddled up against him, despite having slapped him moments ago. The slap itself was uncharacteristic of her, as well; she's always been reluctant to turn toward violence. "We thought the worst. We thought you had died down there, or on the way…" She lifts her face, tears glimmering in her blue eyes as she peers up at Graeme. "I thought I had lost you, mon cher."

Liam hacks away at the logs for but a moment, splitting one into quarters. Then, after a brief glance toward his parents, the young man smiles faintly and turns, departing to allow them some time alone. For once, his mother's eyes don't follow him, though she knows where he's going without having to look. Their bond is a special one that only death will be able to break.

"Next time you decide to not show your face for two years," Remi murmurs, "send us a letter." She squeezes Graeme again.

There is a nod of agreement from Graeme, who holds Remi even closer for a long moment. His thoughts are quiet, but they too betray how bad it was when he left, things that have always haunted the man in quiet moments like this. "I didn't know it would be so long," he says, by way of apology. "But I am glad to be here."

"To be home." The second is said more quietly than the first. It's not a word he uses often. Before, home was always in New York, but not anymore. It's in agreement with his thoughts, and with the way his arms tighten around his friend. They have not had the chance to build a life together, but maybe he can salvage what is left.

"And we're glad to have you," Remi murmurs in a soft tone, lifting a hand to push her graying hair away from her face, lifting her eyes to Graeme's weathered face. After a moment, she offers a faint smile, her hands raising to gently cup his cheeks. Then, the wizened telepath raises to the tips of her toes, pressing her lips against his in a soft, welcoming kiss. It just feels right, in this exact moment.

The kiss doesn't linger. She lets it break as she lowers herself back down onto her heels, her fingers feathering over his jawline for a brief moment. "Welcome home, Graeme…"

Skinny Brickfront, Endgame Safehouse

Graeme rolls over in his sleeping bag, pulling on a sweatshirt from the pile of them and then slipping out of the room he shares with the teenager, careful not to wake anyone else on account of it being early enough in the morning that there's no light creeping into the house through any of the myriad cracks or empty-paned windows. Still nighttime, from all he can tell, as he pauses at the top of the stairway.

But for all of the dream that he's just woken from, this is one of those things that means that with quiet, sure steps, Graeme is finding his way down to the basement. She can join him there or not, the telepath is more than adept at finding where people are in the house. When she does come down the steps, she'll find him contemplating the punching bag, barefoot, but still.

The telepath's fingers feather at the air, her eyes opening to the ceiling, rather than Graeme's weathered face. For a moment, she freezes, barely awake yet at the same time more alert than she should be. After a moment, she exhales, letting her hands drop down to her side as she stares upwards. That was a strange…strange dream. And the details, so crisp in her memory, where they usually fade the moment she awakens.

After a moment, Remi sits up, blue eyes skimming her room above the entry to Endgame's safehouse. It was just a dream. A bittersweet one, where she was old and a mother and she loved him, more than she ever knew she could love anyone.

Her mind reaches out, touching those in the house. She can feel Graeme somewhere below her. After a moment's deliberation, she rolls off of her cot, pulling on some pajama pants and slipping a light, airy robe over her shoulders. Then, quiet footsteps take her down to the basement, down to him. She pauses there, at the foot of the stairs, staring at him with striking blue eyes in complete silence.

A single punch is thrown and the punching bag stopped from hitting him on the recoil, before Graeme hazards a guess at who has come down the stairs behind him. It could be anyone, but there's one person that's so much more likely than anyone else.

"Remi," he calls out, without turning towards her just yet, and then he turns, makes his way towards the minifridge that occupies a corner of the room to grab two sodas, then to the camp chairs, picking one up to sit on and unfolding another one for Remi. "It's not just you," he offers, quietly. "They're … shared, pretty much." The words are said with some amount of trepidation, aware of the tension that's been present between the two of them. Of what happened in another timeline but will likely never happen in this one.

The redhead stares quietly, watching Graeme with a quiet sort of curiousity. "Shared?" She asks this quietly. Reluctantly, she makes her way forward from the foot of the stairs, bare feet not making a simgle sound as she all but glides across the floor, lowering herself down into her seat and drawing her knees up to her chest. The soda is accepted with some hesitation.

"So…you saw it too?" Her tone is quiet, her voice so low that Graeme may have to strain to hear her. "You saw him?"

"Yes," Graeme says. There is a faint, almost content smile on his face. Like the other dream he had, though this one was by no means good, it was happy. It showed the bright side of things as much as he can vividly remember the dark side of things. "They're … different than regular dreams. Another future, a different one, one where we're not so lucky most of the time," he says. "I don't know much more after that, except that I know other people have them." The words fade into silence, and he crosses his feet, looking over. "We must have named him after my father," Graeme offers, quietly, with a smile.

"A son…" Remi sounds as if the very thought of having a child amazes her. She never thought of children. Nor did she ever think it would be Graeme's child that she could one day have. She avoids eye contact with the man, hugging her knees up against her chest. "He…you couldn't hear him. Liam…he and I could speak. He loved me…what I felt from him, I can't even begin to describe…"

Finally, she raises her eyes to Graeme's face, feeling the flicker of feelings she felt from her dreams minutes ago. "It was so real…" She reaches out, hesitantly for a moment; her hand hovers above Graeme's, as she debates on whether or not she wants to touch him, to open herself up to him. Then, feeling a bit of resolve, she places her hand atop his.

As sad as it might have been, I want that…but it will never happen, will it? When Remi looks at Graeme, it is with sad eyes.

Graeme wraps his hand around hers, silent for the moment but for his thoughts. The lingering guilt of not being able to be there for her, or his child balanced with his duties, all perhaps more intense in waking than they were in the dream. "It was," he agrees aloud, before continuing silently. Part of me does too, Remi, but no. The thoughts in response are wistful. He squeezes her hand. At least, I don't know. Not yet. Not now. I wouldn't even want to bring a child into this world, at this point, even if we were living in perfect circumstances. And they aren't. But part of me does too.

Remi quietly watches Graeme, her eyes sad. Maybe…one day. Not yet…I never thought of kids until just…just now. She watches the man in silence, her hand squeezing against his. Then, she's up, and flipping around so that she's in Graeme's lap. Nothing enticing about this; she simply wants to be close to him, with her arms wrapped around his shoulders and her head resting against his chest.

"I — I'm sorry for the way I 'ave been acting toward you of late…" She whispers this against his chest, closing her eyes.

Somehow, he's not surprised, and he just wraps his arms around her shoulders, holding her. For his own part, there is a part of Graeme that is trying to hold on to the memory of the fall colours of canada, the small little homestead. It is a constant, settled right there in his mind next to to the chain link fence and lurking negation of the prison camps, like he's somehow afraid he's going to forget or that forgetting would impede their ability to maybe make that future not come to pass.

But there's more focus on simply remembering the dream they just had and not letting it slip away. Using those to block out other things that he doesn't need to think about or she doesn't need to see, but there's no point in hiding the fact that he's at least well, hiding things. It's the benefit of living with telepaths no matter where he sleeps, and a talent he's gotten good at. "It's been as much me as you," he admits, his own part in the matter notwithstanding criticism. "Forgiven?" A pause. Well, as long as you please, please don't try and kiss me again, he adds quietly with a grin.

"Forgiven," Remi whispers against Graeme's chest, relishing the feel of his arms around her shoulders. She's missed this. She does her best not to pay too much mind to what she can see and feel off of Graeme, though she still takes notice of them. Instead of focusing on them, however, she focuses instead on remembering the dream along with him.

As long as I please? There's a 'joking' tone to that thought, but she keeps her face buried against his chest. "Just…do not treat me like I'm some…fragile little thing, oui?"

She finally raises her gaze up to his face. "And…don't mind me when I get in a mood. It's…difficult, these days." She allows her blue eyes to trail down where she rests upon him, before they move back up to his face. "And sometimes, I see things that I 'ave trouble dealing with. It's only for a little while. I'm getting better at it, but…" She tilts her head to one side.

"I'm mourning my lost innocence."

I know, Graeme adds, choosing not to break the moment with words aloud anymore. He's used to silent conversation as much as he's used to hiding things that need not be seen. But too much mourning isn't a good thing, Graeme responds, brushing her hair out of her face once more with his thumb. The criticism isn't of her, specifically, and it is gentle. Less calloused and rough than in the dream. It interferes with living. There is a shift in his focus, to trying to convey how he manages to cope and keep going despite it all, as he sits there, quiet.

A slow nod bobs Remi's head up and down, the woman leaning forward again until her head is resting against Graeme's chest. I've felt…alone, lately. Like…the odd one out. I'm trying…I really am. She closes her eyes, and sighs softly, relaxing against Graeme. Please…let's not fight any more…promise me, no matter what, we'll always try to reconcile our differences…

Shortly after that thought is sent, Remi relaxes even more, her eyes closing as she promptly falls asleep, listening to the metronome that is Graeme's heart.

Graeme doesn't fall back asleep. Not this time, not that he ever does once he's woken up. But neither does he move, except once to get a blanket against the cold. For now, it's enough for him to sit there, pensive. I promise.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License