Monochrome Delirious, Part III



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mitchell_icon.gif peter3_icon.gif woods_icon.gif

Scene Title Monochrome Delirious, Part III
Synopsis On the journey to see the Wizard, things take a decidedly obvious turn for the surreal when Dorothy meets the Tin Man
Date May 2, 2009

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

Trees are supposed to be green things, not these horrible, stick-bare and shriveled brown twigs extending up from the ground to claw like skeletal hands at the sky. Packed tightly together, these dead hands of oak and birch scrape bony fingers at the ashen heavens, a grim epitaph to a once verdant park.

…I just want to start, a flame in your heart

Deadfall from the trees crunches underfoot as Woods ducks his head below a particularly low branch, eyes wide as he stares up through the branches towards the still falling ash flakes that gradually descend to the dusty earth below. It's become clear, in the slow journey out from the ruins of Midtown, that the decimation caused by the bomb was not just relegated to that crumbling urban landscape. Somehow, the bomb destroyed everything.

I've lost all ambition, of worldly acclaim

Behind Woods, Peter Petrelli and Odessa Knutson trudge through the dead forest as a cold breeze blows through the thickets, rustling branches together with a mournful whistling. High in the boughs of the trees, distant cawing of ravens fills the air, and their dark forms flit from tree to tree. Every cry of these grim messengers sends Peter ducking, dark eyes upturned towards their inky forms against the gray skies.

I just want to be the one you love

"You know," Woods finally speaks up for the first time in a long time, pausing between two trees to look back at Odessa, his black tuxedo now smudged with ash on the shoulders, the same gray flakes settled on his light hair. "I've really got to say, this is a lot worse than I remember Central Park being…"

And in your admission, that you feel the same…

Peter pauses when Woods does, looking down from the treetops to him, then back over his shoulder to Odessa. A weak smile is offered as a response at first, then more substantial words filling the considerable void. "It wasn't always like this," Peter mumbles, moving to walk past Woods and head towards a clearing in the trees just past him. "The Wicked Witch of the West caused all of this…"

…I'd reach the goal I've been dreaming of these years.

One blonde brow arches and Woods turns his head, following Peter with an incredulous expression. "Did you just say a wizard did it?" There's a squint, and Woods moves to follow Peter out into the clearing. "Because I know you're a bit soft, Pete, but that's-" A hissed shriek causes Woods to cut himself off, staring down at the ground where a pile of ashen bones are strewn about the clearing, huddled together in some grisly display. Peter merely stands in silence, staring down at them with a blank expression in his eyes.

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

"I said a witch did all of this." Peter's brow furrows, turning to look over his shoulder to Woods, then step aside so that Odessa can see the skeletal remains, partially buried under a light blanket of ash. From this sight, of bones blasted apart and the ashen gray skies, it becomes increasingly evident that this isn't all the disaster Peter caused years ago. This is something new, something terrible, and something final. A nuclear winter.

…I just want to start, a flame in your heart.

"Oh, my gosh." Odessa looks around with a similar bewilderment to Woods, trailing a bit behind Peter as she takes it all in. "This place… I used to love it. It used to be pretty." She stops short as she listens to Peter's explanation of who did this. "A witch," she repeats, turning her gaze to Woods again. Does this make any sense to you? No, of course it doesn't.

At first, Odessa isn't sure what she's staring at when Peter steps out of her immediate line of sight. Like a Magic Eye picture slowly coming into view, it dawns on her. She opens her mouth to speak. To find something to say. Instead, a rather pathetic squeak is all she musters. And then she scurries over to Woods to grab his arm, as though that might protect her from a dormant threat. "I don't think I like this place." Not that she ever professed to in the first place.

"You're the one who asked for a shortcut," Peter notes, looking over at Odessa as he steps through the strewn skeletal remains that are matted down into bare earth, half-buried, looking partially exhumed like some wild animals had drifted in and tore the bones up from the dusty ground. Woods, in light of this revelation, has stayed just on the edge of the forest, one hand clasped over his mouth and wide eyes trained on Odessa. He lurches forward, a few hesitant steps, and then begins circling around the skeletal remains.

Peter steps over and through the bones, coming to the other side of the clearing a sone hand moves up to rub his chin. "Hmm," he begins, the sound uncharacteristically thoughtful, dark eyes surveying the treeline as he takes a few steps in another direction, that same hmming noise reverberating in his throat before giving a firm nod of his head as he looks back to Odessa.

"Yep, I was right." His brows rise and hands clap together as if to state eureka but rather it's more, "we're completely lost."

Odessa takes in a deep breath, following Woods in his circle about the bones. She glances up at him and swallows. "At least it isn't cobbler?" She attempts a smile, but it's short-lived at best. Her head tilts to one side, spilling brown hair over her shoulder as she watches Peter with a glimmer of hope.

Yeah. That's short-lived, too.

"We're lost?" Odessa closes her eyes tightly. "Woods, you know your way around New York, right? I mean, there's got to be some similarities between this and where we… you come from?" Do they even come from the same timeline? She opens her eyes again and levels an annoyed look at Peter. "This is all your fault, you know. One minute, you're breaking me out of prison, the next, I'm here." What the hell, Petrelli. "Does any of that ring a bell?"

There's just a blank look from Peter as his lips curl up into a helpless expression of unfamiliarity at anything Odessa is talking about. Peter glances over to Woods, who is turning around trying to get his bearings amidst the blackened trees and the ruined silhouettes of crumbling buildings set against ash gray skies. "I— can't even fucking tell what landmark is what, the whole city looks like it was bloody nuked!" Accusingly, Woods glances over to the treeline, looking to Peter and then to Odessa.

"Did either of you hear that?" He snaps his attention back to the trees, lips parted as he begins to walk, and then stops. "Wait— no, I know how this goes, pretty young white boy goes into the woods and gets eaten by the monster so the adoreable young brunette can escape."

Wait wasn't Odessa blonde back when they met Peter? Her dress has changed colors to white and blue tartan patterning as well.

"Oil… can…" Woods stares in the direction of the treeline again, mouth slowly dropping open as one brow lowers and his eye narrows in a squint. There's a certain slack-jawed quality to it, as he holds up his hands and proclaims loudly his discontent.

"This is absolutely fucking ridiculous!"

"Oil can?" Odessa's brows furrow in confusion. Woods seems to have some sort of loose understanding of what's going on here, but Miss Knutson is completely in the dark. She sighs softly at Woods' refusal to figure out where the voice is coming from. "I am perfectly capable of escaping if I need to." To prove her point, she goes marching off toward the voice. Her steps may be sure, but as soon as she's sure Woods and Peter can't see her face anymore, she's rightly trepidatious.

Woods' eyes widen as Odessa moves into the treeline, and Peter gapes abit after Woods' statement of being horribly mangled by some sort of forest monster. "No, wait, don't get mangled!" Peter exclaims, hastily stumbling and galavanting off after Odessa, only managing to catch up to her after she's entered a deeper part of the stickbare grove, only to find—

A man leaning on his toes, reaching up for an oil can lodged up in a tree. Nearby, deadfall branches have been gathered together in a makeshift pile, surrounded by small, broken pieces of concrete and cinder blocks like a fire pit. His suit is dusty, skin dark and chocolate brown, but when he turns with a frustrated sigh, there's absolutely no mistaking the face of Vice-President Andrew Mitchell when he looks dead-on at Odessa.

Eyes go wide on both sides of the spectrum as Woods stares at the vice-president, and Andrew stares back at Odessa, Woods and Peter. "P— People?" Mitchell's brow furrows, head tilting to one side as he warily takes a step back, pressing himself up against the tree. He looks like a man that has been through hell, with a split on the shoulder of his suit, one sleeve frayed at the wrist, pants wrinkled, and everything powdered by ash.

Slowly, Odessa looks between the three men around her. She leeeeans over to Peter and tugs him gently down to her level to murmur in his ear, "Isn't that the bastard that wants to lock us all up?" All the while, she warily eyes Mitchell. "Never mind," she says quickly, afraid dummy Peter will open his big mouth and say something, well, more stupid than he has already. "Why do you need an oil can?"

Mitchell's stare lingers on Odessa, not able to make out what she said but able to notice the affirmed nod that Woods gives to her. "I— need to start a fire. It'll be night soon, and— where di dyou three come from? I— I didn't think anyone still lived on the outskirts of the city since…" There's a tension in Mitchell's frame, brows creasing, and he takes a few hesitant steps towards Odessa, Peter and Woods.

"You aren't emissaries of the Witch are you?" Fingers wind into fists, and Mitchell's dark eyes wander between the three, only to have Peter throw up his hands with eyes wide and a worried look plastered across his face.

"Aah!" Peter yelps loudly, backing away from himself, "I— I work for the witch?" His brows crease together, eyes diverting to Odessa. "Wait— that doesn't make much sense since she hung me up on a fence…" one hand moves to rub at his chin, puzzled.

Blue eyes lid heavily as Peter has his little freak-out. "Oh, my gosh, Petrelli. Shut up." Odessa breathes in slowly and then opens her eyes again to look at Mitchell. "My friend and I," she tilts her head in Woods' direction, "aren't from around here at all. We don't know what's happened to this place. And he," she now jerks her head in Peter's direction, "seems to be suffering from brain damage of some sort." Her head swivels and she peers curiously at Peter. "Are you sure you didn't take any heavy blows to the head?" She shakes it off. "Never mind." Back to Mitchell. "No. We are not emissaries of the Witch." Again, she indicates to Woods, "He and I don't even know who she is."

All Peter can do is frown like a kicked puppy at Odessa's reaction, arms folding across his chest as he wanders just a little bit away from the gathering. Mitchell glances at the dark-haired man, then looks back to Odessa,brushing off some ash from the palms of his hands. "The witch calls herself Munin." Mitchell's brows lower into a frustrated expression, "she did all of this," a hand waves towards the ruined buildings. "She destroyed everything, and not even the Wizard has done anything to stop it. He just sits in his tower and…"

A cold wind blows through the trees, rustling the branches, and with that whistling howl, Mitchell takes a few slow steps back, hands wringing together. "Countless lives lost, but more importantly everything I worked so hard for." When Andrew turns away for just a moment, there's this wildly exasperated sigh as Woods picks up a stick and walks over, knocking the oil can out of the tree before hurling the stick back down to the ground.

"There" he exclaims, "was that so bloody hard!?" But before Andrew can even formulate a response, Woods advances on him with hands waving wildly, "I know you need a heart, you're a heartless political mastermind, yes I've seen the bloody movie!" His hands move up to his hair, tugging at blonde locke, and Woods whips around to find Odessa with his pale eyes.

"Can we please get out of here before someone in a very bad lion suit comes in?"

"Eileen?!" Odessa's eyes grow wide as saucers as Munin is named the witch. "I don't understand. Why would Eileen do this?" Her thoughts are cut short by Woods' movements and subsequent shouting. The woman blinks several times. "What… movie?" She holds her hands up in surrender quickly. "Forget it. Let's just keep going. Coming, Peter?"

Mitchell's eyes settle on Odessa, one brow arched, more so in an attempt to pretend that Woods isn't a crazy man because he's spouting crazy talk. "I don't know what her real name is, but she calls herself Munin. She's the one who burned the city to the ground and swallowed the rest of it in the ocean."

Woods breathes out a sigh when Odessa fails to get the reference, "It's— oh, for the love of— " his shoulders slump, eyes upturning to Mitchell. "Would you like to…" his teeth grit, he can't believe he's saying this. "Would you like to come see the Wizard with us, Mister figment of my imagination?" Mitchell glances to Woods, then looks at Odessa — she's obviously the only one who isn't crazy here, obviously.

"You're… going to the Emerald Tower?" When the question is posed, Mitchell takes a step forward, only to have Peter dive in front of Odessa with one arm hooked out towards Mitchell, a broad smile spread across his face.

"We're off to see the— " Peter's sing-song tone of voice is cut off as Woods yanks him back by the collar of his jacket and clamps one hand down over his mouth, a fdinger pointed directly towards him threateningly. "I swear to bloody Christ, Pete. If you so much as sing one more line I will put that branch square up your— "

Odessa stares at Mitchell as he explains what Munin has done to the city, brows knit with concern and confusion. The Eileen she knew would never do something like that. Then again, the Sabra she knew wouldn't be living in a Hooverville with little children, and James Woods is supposed to be dead.

This must be what going mad feels like. "Yes, we're on our way to the Emerald Tower to see the Wizard. We were following the yellow paint lines, but Peter thought he knew a shortcut, and now we're lost. Do you know how to get us back to the yellow paint lines?" She jumps a little when Woods again goes after Peter for attempting to sing. Like scolding a puppy, she orders, "Down, boy!"

Previously in this storyline…
Monochrome Delirious, Part II

Next in this storyline…
Monochrome Delirious, Part IV

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