Monochrome Delirious, Part I



Also Featuring:

woods_icon.gif angela_icon.gif sabra_icon.gif

Scene Title Monochrome Delirious, Part I
Synopsis I don't think we're in Utah anymore, Toto… And it's all Peter's fault.
Date April 30, 2009

The Ruins of Midtown?

"Odessa…" Peter murmurs, feeling the welling surge of abilities rising up in him, "I— I think— " his voice is barely a whisper, shared with the brunette alone. But all Teo can see is Peter's struggle, and even as Peter begins to raise his voice again, as the fluctuating waves of temporal distortion and amplification rise up from him, adding to both his own power and that of Odessa's temporal manipulation—

—a bullet finds its way into him.

And time comes grinding to a halt. It's hard to say just how long time was frozen for, how long Tamara lay cold and alone on the concrete floor, how long Odessa's hand lingered on Peter's shoulder, how long Lucrezia's scream rang out in that silent infinity.

But when that bubble breaks, when the torrent of wound up temporal energy rockets outwards like a snapped elastic, the last thing Teodoro, Lucrezia and Odessa see, is the room around them coming to a bright and radiant blur of motion.

And then everything changes.

I don't want to set the world on fire…

Through blurred vision, palm trees sway overhead, blocking out an azure blue sky with patches of green and brown. The rumbling of an engine sounds like the purring of an enormous cat beneath her back. Dark figures shifting in seats, guns, trees, sky, blue.

I just want to start…

Gunfire sounds like a popcorn machine, something out of sight is reminiscent of the whirring clicks of a projector running. Perhaps that's why everything is so blurry, and desaturated of colors like some old silent movie. A record spins on a turntable, producing warbling tunes befitting to the imagery.

…A flame in your heart.

Bullets bounce off of one of the tall, dark men, deflecting from his brow as if it were a spit-wad fired out of a straw during science class. Blood is the color of cherries, bright, red and shiny, so warm against pale skin and dark hair. The world spins, guns, trees, sky, blue.

In my heart I have but one desire…

The rumbling of an engine sounds like some great lion, stirring in his den on a pile of bones. The blood is so red, it is the color of a candy apple, sweet and sticky to the touch, with a hard and crunchy interior. She has never tasted a candy apple, but they look so good in the movies. The projector reel keeps turning, even though the film reel inside has run out, slapping against the reel with a constant flip, flip, flip sound.

…and that one is you…

Falling, swirling, guns, red, sky, blue. Everything is spinning and the smoke is so thick, choking her breath, clinging to her hair and clothes, but no matter how fast she chases the man with ink black hair and a long coat — no matter how long she chases the dragon — she'll never be able to catch him. He's just as much smoke as everything else has become.

No other will do…

Everything stops in a loud crash, the whole sheet metal building smashing down on the ground as if having fallen from a great height. The roof slants to one side as metal walls and wooden framework creak and groan under the stress of the collapse. Dust billows in through glassless windows, rolling like clouds of smoke. A rolling sound from a single bottle tumbling across the floor comes to an abrupt stop when it clunks into the side of Odessa Knutson's head.

It's about then the door creaks partway open, revealing a sliver of trees, sky, blue.

I don't want to set the world on fire…

What's just happened? Slowly, she lifts her head. Brown hair is powdered with dust and dirt.

Blood. There was blood everywhere. And the sound of… What was all that?

Where is she? "Peter?" Climbing to her feet on unsteady legs, Doctor Knutson looks about for the ability mimic. Then, she calls for his counterpart, "Sylar?"

"Oy fuck me," comes a murmured voice from beneath the toppled bookshelf, "I swear this day just gets worse an' fuckin' worse." Wood creaks and rumbles, but the sound of shifting and clinking glass isn't accompanying Peter or Sylar's voice at all, but one far from the back of Odessa's mind, one that in some other time and other place, reminds her of her time as a canary in a cage.

Crawling out from beneath the bookshelf, the hawkish looking blonde man that scrambles away from the collapsed shelving seems more bewildered than anything, rising up to dust off his black tuxedo, straightening his red bowtie with a defiant snort, "Seriously this suit cost me— " his eyes spot a tear on the shoulder, and an overly dramatic sigh presses out of his nose, followed by both of his hands thrown up into the air as he groans loudly, "Oh come the fuck on!"

Peter, Sylar, those would have been understandable people to run into here.

But Agent Woods in a tux?

That's going a little far.

"Oh crap," Odessa breathes out, "I'm dead." It's a reasonable conclusion. Because, well, Agent Woods is dead. So too must she be. She thinks about giving in to panic for a moment or two. Ultimately, however, Odessa possesses the rational brain of a doctor. There's no proof that there's an afterlife, so there must be some sort of explanation for this. After a deep breath, she responds oh-so-casually, "I could sew that tear up for you no problem. Your suit will be good as new."

Brow furrowing together, Woods stares at Odessa with an incredulous look for a moment before pointing towards her with one finger, "That is a pretty fetching getup." He notes with one quirk of his head, suggesting that the powder blue dress and black strappy shoes Odessa's sporting is perhaps fitting attire for — well not anything like this. "You can't be dead," he notes, looking down at the tear on his shoulder, tugging at a loose thread, "'cause I'm obviously not, so that wouldn't make any of this make sense at all…" his eyes narrow for a moment, and he looks back to Odessa with an intent expression, "you really could sew this— "

The sound of a pained groan from out the front door cuts Woods off, one blonde brow rising up as he wheels about, head tilted to one side like a curious dog. "Did you just hear— " the groan comes out again, cracked and whimpering, prompting Woods to raise both hands up in the air, "I am not fighting off zombies." He turns to look at the door, then back to Odessa, "well, this is obviously a dream so — " he makes a flippant hand gesture to the door, "you go check it."

"A dream?" Odessa looks down at her clothing. This must be a joke. These shoes are flats. Ew. She looks back up at Woods. "Must be your dream and not mine." She cautiously moves toward the door, but not before stopping to adjust Woods' bowtie. "You've got red on you," she murmurs absently.

If this is a dream, then there's nothing to fear. But it's unlike any dream Odessa can recall having. Perhaps a hallucination? Even then, this doesn't make sense. Why would she hallucinate Agent Woods of all people? She shakes her head and pulls open the front door a crack - just enough to peer outside.

Outside to what is clearly a shanty town, all of the makeshift buildings made from aluminum sheets and planks of wood, metal piping and tarp doors. Fire burns in several barrels scattered around the shanty town, though not a single soul is in sight. But it's the oozing pool of blood coming out from beneath the front steps of the building Odessa stands in that catches her attention, that coupled with the pair of feet sticking out from beneath the stairs, feet covered in candy-apple red high-heeled pumps.

"Well?" Woods asks, taking a hesitant step towards the door, easing up on his toes to peer over the top of Odessa's head, "'Ow many zombies is it, eh?" The groan comes again, and Woods jerks back, jumping away like a little girl might recoil from a spider. "Jesus!"

The muffled groan, emanating from beneath the house, is clearly from the victim of whatever person was just crushed by the building. Slowly but surely, though, people begin to peer out from behind canvas flaps and ratty blue tarps. Children ducked behind burning oil drums begin to step out from hiding, eyes wide as they look to the brunette standing in the doorway of the fallen house, and then down to the feet sticking out from beneath the steps.

"Oh— my god…" one of the little children whispers, covering his mouth with a gloved hand, "she— she killed Angela Petrelli!"

"Oh crap." Odessa takes a step back into the building and grabs Woods by the shoulders. "That's Angela Petrelli out there. That's the boss." She's only met the woman a handful of times, and only in passing, but… It's enough to know that she'll be in huge trouble over this. …If it's real. "What the hell's going on?"

"Don't look at me, one of us is a figment of the other's imagination," Woods explains, tugging at his bowtie as he takes a hesitant stride past Odessa, "but it's only Angela Petrelli, not zombies right? I really have an aversion to the walking dead." His eyes settle on Odessa's for a moment, before he flashes her a smile, "Let me show you how a real man handles this."

Pushing the door open, Woods takes a step out into the crowd of children, both hands held up, "Destitute little children," he proclaims, looking up towards the jagged skyline of Midtown Manhattan looming all around them, "nothing happened here, please…" he makes a shooing motion with his hands, "move along." There's a cocksure smile as Woods looks back into the shack, flashing Odessa a winning smile and a thumbs up.

"James Woods, what have you done?" This is, of course, before that voice comes calling out from behind the children. A sudden, sinking sensation causes Wood's expression to drop like a falling house as he turns to look back at the children gathered around the pool of blood, only to see regan and defined woman with chalk white hair come sauntering out from behind one of the shanty buildings. The children duck out of her way, some still gawking at the blood.

"S— Sabra?" Woods croaks out, and then immediately steps to the side with a squelching sound of blood oozing up beneath his shoes and points into the cabin, "She did it!" He proclaims as loud as possible, "Odessa! Not me! She did it!"

"Am I the figment, or are you?" The perplexity of this situation is frustrating to the young woman. "You have an aversion to zombies? They aren't…" Surreptitiously, Odessa slides a hand down Woods' arm in an attempt to feel for a pulse at his wrist. You know, since he does appear to be a walking dead man. Curse him, however, he moves her aside as though she were a child. "Okay, you handle this, then."

Nothing has happened here. Is this how he handled everything when he was out in the field? That doesn't even- Did anyone actually fall for that? Logic dictates he must have done something right if they were using him to keep an eye on Petrelli, but… The thumbs up is silly, but she can't help but smile back when he smiles at her. She never realised just how badly she'd missed his smiles.

The moment is interrupted by a very familiar voice. "Oh, don't let her take me back, Woods!" Odessa pleads as she attempts to duck out of sight before Sabra Dalton catches sight of her. Unfortunately, Woods is all too willing to throw her under the bus, as it were. She stands in the doorway with a wide-eyed expression. "Madame Dalton," she greets numbly. "Comment allez-vous?" Brilliant, Knutson. A dirty look to Woods is just barely suppressed.

An assessing stare is given to Woods, followed by Sabra's eyes tracking from the blonde agent towards Odessa's frame in the door. "My, my dear, you do certainly look a little frazzled — and please, you know it's just Sabra to you." One eye narrows a bit more than the other, "but I think you might be mistaken with my intentions." Sabra's blue eyes track down to the pool of blood, one brow rising higher than the other before she reaches into the pocket of her blazer and takes out a white pen, clicking it open as her other hand produces a notepad, scribbling something down as she walks to the edge of the pool of blood.

"Odessa, dear, it's rather fortunate that you found your way to us as you have." She tears off the note from the paper, and the children move around her slowly, some eyeing her hand as she reaches out to hand Odessa the slip, some still fascinated by the legs sticking out from beneath the house, "but you see, you're not supposed to be here."

The piece of paper held out contains an address for the upper east side, all the way across town from the looks of the jagged and ruined buildings jutting up from around the shanty town.

"Uh, Miss Sabra," Woods chimes in, tugging at his collar as he takes a step back over to the conversation now that he can see no one is in trouble. "Exactly what is going on here, if — you know — I might ask?" Squinting, Woods is rewarded with Sabra's calm and patient gaze, before she nods her head down to the legs sticking out from beneath the house.

"Well, James, you and Odessa seem to have done us quite a favor, by getting rid of Miss Petrelli," she looks back up to Odessa, "but I'm afraid that small victory is but one of many you'll need to be making if you'd like to find your way home, Odessa."


Where is that, anyway?

"Home," Odessa repeats dumbly as she stares down at the address written on the paper. "What is this?" There's no description. Is it an apartment complex? A warehouse? Another Company facility? "I don't understand what's going on here," she admits, glancing back up to the older woman. "How did I get here?" She turns to look up at Woods. "How did you get here?"

"I distinctly recall you being the one that— " Woods is interrupted by a hand waved in his direction from Sabra, and a click of her pen. Grimacing, Woods folds his hands behind his back and awkwardly hangs his head in silence.

"You're… somewhere, somewhen else, Odessa. It's hard to say where or when exactly, except that you don't belong." Furrowing her brows, Sabra breathes out a sigh and slides her pen back into her jacket, looking between Odessa and Woods.

"I am not the one to answer any of those questions though, only one person can truly answer them for you," she motions towards a single — unfamiliar — skyscraper rising up from beyond the ruins, a green glass tower with a double helix logo cresting the top. "Only the Wizard of Odessa can truly answer that."

"Excuse me?" Woods double-takes, looking to Sabra with a dumbfounded expression, "Did you say Wizard?"

Sabra's silent stare back at Woods is mostly answer enough, and he throws both of his hands into the air once more, "Okay that's it I draw the line at Wizards I mean seriously." As he starts to storm away, Sabra shakes her head and motions towards him with one hand.

"Oh you're not going anywhere James, Odessa's going to need your help to meet the Wizard." Woods stops in place, halting jerkily as he slowly turns and looks back over his shoulder with a why me expression on his face. Sabra's eyes, however, downturn to Odessa's feet, "and probably some," her gaze shifts to the side to the feet sticking out from beneath the house, "sensible shoes?"

"Pardon me?" Odessa leans in closer to Sabra as if she'd just misheard what the woman said. "Wizard? There's no such-" Doctor Knutson tips her head outside of the doorway ever so slowly, eyes growing larger as her lips part and her jaw nearly drops at the sight of the green glass tower. This Hooverville didn't seem to be quite right, but that's definitely out of place. When Woods decides he's not going to participate she turns quickly to fix him with a pleading look. "Please, Woods! You have to help me. I don't know my way around New York like you do. Please?" Sabra's orders may have secured his servitude, but the young woman would rather have the agent thinking of this more as a favour to her than simply following orders.

Sensible shoes. Now that regains Odessa's attention. Sensible shoes are not something in the woman's wardrobe. For one thing, they're ugly and they are entirely lacking in imagination or expression. Her eyes follow Sabra's gaze and she quirks one blonde brow. "Wouldn't be the first time I've stolen a pair of shoes off a corpse," she muses, squaring the proposed action out loud with herself.

"No, it wouldn't, would it?" Sabra notes with one raised brow, turning to look at Woods as he humbly walks back over, shoulders slacked and head hung. "Now then," one hand motions to the shoes, then up to Odessa, "you get yourself something better to walk in," like heels really are the answer to that for trapsing around in the ruins of Manhattan, "and I'll go about explaining to these fine children that they no longer have to worry about my dour contemporary any longer."

With a faint smile, Sabra moves past Woods, giving him a gently pat on the shoulder, which he responds to with a faint nod of his head. "So…" he peers over his shouolder to Sabra as she gathers the children around, then looks back to Odessa, "Uh, we— a wizard?" Really, he still isn't buying into any of this, or really the plausibility of a house falling out of the sky to land on Angela Petrelli.

"I'm gonna' ask you a kinda' silly question," one shoulder rolls, and Woods looks down to the red pumps, then back up to Odessa, "call me crazy, but in'nit all of this just a little familiar to you?"

"I think the nurse showed me a movie like this once when she decided I was too needy," Odessa offers by way of agreement. "What was that even called? It was stupid." The notion is dismissed with a faint curl of her lip.

When she steps into the blood to retrieve the shoes from Angela Petrelli's feet, the tackiness of the thick red that makes her black shoes stick to the pavement causes her to stop. A suddenly forlorn look is cast at Woods, complete with trembling lips. "Could… Could you get them for me? I need to… Sit down." She stares at the pool about her feet as flashes of memory assault her mind. "This is feeling a little too familiar."

"You want me to loot the shoes off of a dead woman?" Wood's brows crease together as he rests his hands on his hips, leaning forward to stare at Odessa as if she had two heads and both of them had asked something ridiculous of him. "If I do recall correctly, the late Miss Petrelli was groaning and moaning just a second ago," one hand waves in her legs' direction, "I think I told you a little bit about my aversion to the living dead?"

He pauses, then slaps a hand to his forehead, "Why am I even having this conversation!?" he blurts out, turning around to stare up at the sky for a moment before turning back to Odessa, "It's a pair of bloody red pumps on a cadaver's little tootsies! How does any of this make," flailing wildly now, Wood's voice finally raises, "any bloody sense!?"

"It doesn't, okay?!" Odessa finally cries out, snapping her attention to the flailing agent. "None of this makes any sense! If what Sabra says is right, I'm not even in my own timeline." She swallows back a wave of emotion and tears that sting at the corners of her eyes before taking the last couple steps and hesitating before stooping down to retrieve the shoes. They're going to stain if she leaves them sit there. Such a waste of good shoes. Angela Petrelli did always have good taste. In the end, she can't do it. She walks back toward the house so she can find somewhere to sit, trailing bloody footprints as she goes.

Buckles are unfastened with the ease of practice and she slips out of the matte flats to await the sparkling pumps. In a quiet voice, Odessa admits, "I'm scared, all right?"

"Oh…" Woods deflates a little when he sees Odessa snap, eyeing the shoes again before looking back up to her, "look I— " way to go Woods, she may as well be crying for all of the ways he upset her. "Hey— look I— I'll get you the shoes," from the tone of his voice the idea sounds less than desireable, but taking a few squelching steps over to the legs sticking out from beneath the stairs, Woods comes close enough to crouch down and start unstrapping them.

"Mum," he mutters under his breath, "if you're watchin' this up there, this ain't as bad as it looks, okay?" One shoe comes off, followed by another, but Woods only begins to truly scream like a girl when the feet hiss and shrivel up once the shoes are removed, rolling back like a party favor without air in it to receed under the house.

"Jesus fucking Christ!' Woods cries out in a shrill voice, throwing the shoes into the air as he darts away from the house, hopping up and down as if Angela's sizzling feet and smoldering socks were going to chase him all the way to the grave, "Did you— " he turns to Odessa, pointing at where the feet were, "did you fucking see that!?"

One by one, the red shoes plunk down on the ground.

From the steps leading up to the house, Odessa rubs her eyes with her balled hands once. And then again. "Y- Yeah. I saw it. I've… I've worked with some weird stuff before, but I've never seen anything like that." Dark eyes track up to settle on Woods' face. "Please don't leave me," she begs. None of this is sane. And facing whatever this is alone is simply unfathomable to her right now.

Not quite as calm as Odessa is about this, Woods breathes in and out in slow, repetitious exhalations and inhalations as he stares at where Angela Petrelli's feet receeded beneath the house. Sucking back a confused noise in the back of his throat, he looks befuddled in Odessa's direction, then in the direction of Sabra as he watches the white-haired director saunter back over, clicking the tip of her pen repeatedly with her thumb.

"Good news," she states with a modest smile, "the children and I have determined a proper course for your trip to the Emerald Tower to see the Wizard." As she speaks, Woods' expression begins to sag, Emerald Tower?, Wizard?.

"Does anyone else think this sounds a little— " Once more a single, silent stare from Sabra and a raising of one brow quiets Woods, and he hangs his head slowly with a pouting expression.

"As I was saying," and as she speaks, Sabra motions with her pen towards one of the streets departing the shanty town, a street paved with mostly broken concrete and a pair of double yellow lines down the middle, "you have a direction." Sabra's blue eyes track back to Odessa, lips pressed into an amused smile. "Come now, dear. Lighten that expression of yours, put on your shoes, and follow those yellow lines…" she shrugs, almost impishly and so very out of character for her behavior, "it's quite simple, really."

Numbly, Odessa nods. "Uhm, o…kay." She reaches out to take the shoes from Woods, casting him a nervous glance as she inspects the footware. Once convinced there's nothing wrong with them - aside from having just been on a dead woman whose feet seem to have… whatever it was that just was - she slides her feet in and fastens them. Standing a little more sure of herself than she was a moment ago, having always felt more at home in a pair of heels than any other sort of shoe, she follows the length of double yellow lines with her eyes. "Follow the yellow paint lines?" She glances back to Woods. Oh boy, her expression says even as she holds out one hand to him.

Sabra crooks her lips into a pleased smile as she watches Woods move over to stand by Odessa's side, a confused look of bewilderment crossing his face as he hooks out one arm to offer towards Odessa, grimacing awkwardly all the while. As the children from the shanty town come to converge around Sabra, the white-haired whatever she is here simply nods with a pleased expression and folds her arms, echoing Odessa's words once more.

"Follow the yellow paint lines."

Previously in this storyline…
When Lightning Strikes, Part II

Next in this storyline…
Monochrome Delirious, Part II

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