My Favorite Hallucination


colette_icon.gif tasha_icon.gif

Scene Title My Favorite Hallucination
Synopsis Colette and Tasha have a conversation about their families and their heritage, and Tasha finds a way to make Colette refuse to believe she's real.
Date April 23, 2010

The Garden

Earlier in the morning, Tasha had followed the long and winding snow-packed road far from the safehouse — going a couple of miles in thick snow makes what would normally be a stroll into a hike, but for what she had to do, it was necessary. Two months before, when she and Dane were in hiding, one of the Boston Ferry members had explained to her the safety protocols that they followed. Those in hiding couldn't have cell phones attached to their names — thus the popularity in cash-only, throw-away phones one can buy at a swap meet or convenience store. Tasha made it a habit to pull the battery out of her phone — the one her mother paid for and expected to be contacted from — whenever in a safehouse. Here, in the proximity to her parents, it's even more important.

Finally far enough away from the safehouse that she found herself on a road with some semblance of civilization (if anyone can call Staten Island civilized), Tasha made two quick phone calls. One to her mother: "Hi, Mom, I'm in town. I'm staying with friends but I'll stop by soon. Don't worry, I'll call Dad." The last message she had from her mother was Call your father.

The next was to her father, shorter and terser: "I'm in town. I'll come by sometime this weekend." She called his home land line, knowing it would pick up on an answering machine that might or might not get checked any time soon. She has the cell phone but didn't want to risk actually talking to him — or giving him enough time to get a bead on her.

After the thirty seconds of phone time, Tasha trudged back to the cottage. To make the walk worse, the sky opens up, with not soft and fluffy snow but freezing sleet. Her teeth chattering from the sub-zero weather, she's wondering at her own sanity when she enters the house. "It-it-it's like A-a-a-antarctic-c-c-… fuck it, it's c-c—c-cold," she manages to the form on the couch she knows is Colette.

"What? What!?" Colette squeaks in rapid-fire succession from the couch when she hears Tasha's voice come from the front door and not the stairs. When the teen bolts up and twists her body there's a yelp as she sinks back and wraps her one good arm around herself, eyes scrunched shut and multi-colored quilt sliding off of her body and hanging partly on the old and worn hardwood floor. Eyes shut and mouth open in a gasping wince, Colette manages to shift her expression to a grimace as she very carefully toes mismatched socks down onto the floor, pulls her blanket away and takes a few slow steps from the sofa.

"Wh— what were you doing outside?" Colette asks in a sharp tone of voice, only due to the ache in her chest. "It's— " green eyes go to the frosted windows, then back to Tasha, "gross out!" Glancing around the ground floor's open living room, Colette takes a few more steps away from the sofa and the fireplace, drawing the long and fluffy sleeves of her Alpaca sweater down over her hands, the oversized legs of flannel pants partially hiding the clash of a hunter orange and sky blue sock alternating back and forth across the floor.

"Get over here," Colette makes a swiping motion with her good arm, the injured one still cradled to her chest in a sling, "'cause I totally can't drag you but so help me I will pout as hard as I can!"

Oh, God, not the p-p-pout," Tasha manages, laughing a little as she manages to pull off her soggy gloves and coat and hat and the loaner scarf she stole from the coat rack — not her taste. Burberry plaid — who wears that besides 50-year-old women and maybe Raymond Praeger? She throws all the icy-wet garments on the hat rack with numb fingers before heading toward the fireplace.

She flops down in front of it, reaching to unlace her snow boots, wincing as tugging the laces shoots pain through her cold hands as they begin to warm up in the proximity to the heat. "I had t-t-to run an errand," she explains, finally managing to get one boot off and setting it to warm and dry by the fire before working on the other. "How are you feeling? You look way better than yesterday. I mean, I didn't wanna say nothin' but man." She gives a flash of her crooked grin to show she's kidding. Mostly.

"Showered," Colette offers with a grimace as she more carefully turns to watch Tasha sit down by the fire. "Which— I guess helps a lot. It was kind've hard with the arm," she motions to her slung chicken-wing as she pads over on her toes, "and that they have a ten minute rule here on using hot water. I have not wanted to be back at my dad's more than ever now…" and she may be guilty of a bit of a whine there.

Not sitting yet when she reaches Tasha's side, Colette looks down at her and doesn't realize she's smiling when she does. "Blanket," Colette insists, nodding over to the couch as further instructions, but Colette's moving away and past the sofa, "you better be up there when I get back," she threatens with a squint because that means she's serious.

But then Colette's continuing on her way, moving through the doorway out of the living room and out of sight into the kitchen in silence.

Tasha chuckles. "Yeah, the parental units are usually a pain in the ass, but the comforts of something other than a Safehouse is alluring… or free laundry… warm meals… my mom's got one of those whirly jet thingy bathtubs that would be just about perfect right now," she murmurs as she wiggles her toes to see if she can still feel them. She peels the socks off as they are a touch wet — today's being pink striped Happy Bunny socks with "toes", the Bunny proclaiming, "Hey you made me throw up a little" up on the shin. She puts these on the hearth to dry before standing and heading to the couch. "I'd argue with you but I'm too cold to make any sense," she calls, getting under the quilt and tucking it around her, letting the lingering warmth of Colette's body soak into her chilled skin.

Colette's gone for a few minutes, and from the relative silence around the house it sounds like not many people are here. There's a murmur of conversation in the kitchen, a young man's voice and Colette's, the clatter of something metal and then a glassy clink, and eventually Colette is making her way back out into the living room, holding two steaming hot mugs in one hand by the handles, precariously balanced. "My sister has one of those whirly tubs and oh my God," Colette offers with a raise of her brows, "after I got retarded into a car, I spent a few hours every day in that thing and I felt so good."

Circling around the sofa, Colette glances at the fire, eyeing the logs burning on it and the stack beside, then looks back to Tasha and offers out the pair of mugs. "Cocoa," she says with a smile, "Jonas had some hot water on for tea, so I figured I'd borrow a little."

"Thank you, Jonas," Tasha calls to the kitchen, then grins and reaches for the cup with one hand, lifting the blanket from one side to invite Colette back underneath. It is, after all, Colette's spot and her blanket! Or at least the one she was using.

"Got retarded into a car?" Tasha repeats, with a chuckle. "You are so not retarded. No matter how many times you say it, it isn't true. You're … you're a lot of things, but retarded isn't one of 'em, you know? Talented, kind, funny, maybe just a little bit insane, but not retarded." She flashes a smile as she wraps her hands around the mug, wincing again as more nerves re-awaken, that ache of warming skin painful and yet so welcome.

Well then.

Colette's immediate emergence into the territory of spluttering confusion comes with a bubbled up giggle and a hand that rubs sheepishly at the back of her neck. Noises are made but none of these are actually words really. She hides her flustered confusion and blush by turning her face towards the fire and cradling her mug of cocoa up in front of her mouth. Silent for a moment, she pauses with brows furrowed, offers her back and lifts her good arm enough to wipe it across her eyes.

Swallowing noisily, she turns back around and offers a smile that's much more complex than just a happy one. "So… when everybody tells me that you're just a really cool hallucination," Colette begins, settling down on the sofa very slowly and very mindful of her ribs, "are— you going to vanish? Or— can I just be totally happy in ignorant bliss?"

The teen offers a snorted laugh, teeth toying with her lower lip as she reaches out to take the side of the blanket she was offered, scooting across the old and worn cushions of the sofa to lean against Tasha's side and draw half of the quilt across herself. "Cause— 'Cause you're, like," Colette's dark brows furrow and the teen hiccups out something that is very clearly the sound of her almost breaking down and crying. Nearly being killed the other day might just finally be hitting her.

Hallucination? Tasha tilts her head, smirking slightly with her lips pursed at the edge of her own mug. "You don't have the Evo-flu, do you? Shouldn't be hallucinating, and if you did, I'm certainly, like, the most boring trip ev—" she begins to joke before the other girl suddenly hiccup-sobs. "Heyyy." She sets down the mug, reaching to put it on the coffee table before she spills it, and taking Colette's to keep it company where it won't spill all over the quilt, or worse yet, them. Colette has enough scars.

Tasha's hand, now less chilly thanks to the hot mug recently in its grasp, comes down on Colette's shoulder gently. "Shhh, it's okay. I'm not going to vanish, not any time soon anyway. I may have to run another errand this weekend, but I promise I'll come back, okay?" she murmurs, squeezing the shoulder she holds lightly. "Unless I get eaten by fucking polar bears. Did you hear there are polar bears out somewhere like in Central Park? And penguins. It's like Lost meets Madagascar or some nonsense. New York is so much crazier than Boston, I tell you." She's ill equipped to handle a break-down but she babbles at Colette in hopes of earning a smile.

"Oh, my god," Colette chokes out an awkward laugh, wiping at her eyes with one hand, "wow this is so attractive of me…" she sarcastically comments, sucking in a breath and sniffling before rubbing the heel of her palm at her eyes. "I— oh my God I'm sorry I— " There's no good way to explain what just happened, and swallowing noisily Colette's still somewhat glassy green eyes alight to Tasha's far darker ones. There's a smile, small and modest, and then Colette's head tilts down and shifts to look over at the steaming mugs next to each other on the coffee table.

Embarrassed, Colette's awkwardly silent as she considers her cocoa, but — like she'd commented once to Magnes — it's always too hot to drink right after it's made. Looking back to Tasha, Colette sniffles again furrows her brows, looking to the hand on her shoulder and then back to Tasha again.

"I'm sorry…" Colette repeats, a hand rubbing slowly over her mouth to muffle her own apology. "I— I've had a really— it's— " she just can't put to words how fucked up the last few months have been. "It's been a rough year," she finally agrees on, jaw trembling just a little when she makes eye contact. "I'm— you're— nice." Smooth.

"You know what? If you were cool, you'd be boring. I much prefer retarded," Tasha says with a smirk, squeezing the shoulder and putting her arm around Colette for a moment, careful of the far shoulder that's injured. She knocks her head lightly against the slightly taller teen's in a little sideways headbutt before letting go once more and pulling the blanket higher around both of them. She leans back so her back rests against one of the sofa's arms, turning sideways and stretching her legs out to tuck between Colette's hip and the sofa back — better to face her.

"Battle-scarred Amazon princesses are allowed a couple of moments where they're human, Colette. It's a crappy world, and it's harder for you than it is me. I can't even imagine how scary it is if you're … if you're special like you are… to have this flu around and to know the government is, like, your worst enemy. It scares the hell out of me, and it's not me that's in danger." Tasha offers a sad smile. "But if you're going to cry every time I'm nice to you, I can be mean if you like."

Brown eyes drop and Tasha reaches for one of Colette's hidden feet. "Your socks don't match, for one. What, did you get dressed in the dark? Who do you think you are, Punky Brewster?" The last is said in a faux-mean voice, with her brows furrowed as if annoyed by the offending footwear.

Played like an emotional violin to which Tasha seems expert at, Colette offers a toothy smile and just slowly shakes her head in what is rather obviously disbelief. She's laughing, nervously at times but also honestly, the smile itself is a very genuine one. Shifting her weight just a little to accomodate for the presence of Tasha's feet at her side, Colette bites down gently on her lower lip and furrows her brows. "I— really hope I don't wake up," she mumbles, eyes shifting to the side and smile crooked.

But then there's a touch to her feet and Colette twitches, eyes going wide and a tiny squeak slipping out. There's a flick of green eyes up to Tasha and Colette's nose wrinkles. "Actually— " there's a subtle furrow of Colette's brows, eyes slanting away, "I— " she laughs awkwardly, "it's on purpose." Eager to let her tiny emotional break slip, Colette watches Tasha carefully, though it does border on leering after a moment, and as soon as Colette realizes she's staring down at her lap instead.

"When I was little, I used to wear my socks like this." Colette shifts her legs, mismatched socked feet poking out from beneath the quilt and waggling back and forth, toes curling. "My sister used to tease me, an' I never understood why. Eventually I figured it out, that it looked dumb, so… um," Colette glances back up to Tasha. "When the bomb happened, I— was there. I was like, there." The teen offers a nod of her head. "I got really messed up, I was in a coma for— for a long time. I barely pulled through, and— and after everything, I thought my sister'd died in the explosion. I thought she was dead, I— my dad pretty much disowned me and…" it's a disjointed story, odd crooked angles sticking out of it. "Anyway I— I got sent to an orphanage for a while. I started stealing socks when I was there, stealing a lot've stuff 'cause I hated everyone. But— I started wearing my socks mismatched again, 'cause— it reminded me of my sister…"

Colette's lips creep up into a hesitant smile, eyes back down on her feet. "I never stopped again, even after we were reunited, after I got adopted. I never stopped wearing 'em like this, 'cause it reminds me of her, and how much she means t'me."

Well, now she's never going to be faux-mean again, Tasha's face clearly says as her eyes drop and rise between Colette's mismatched wiggling toes to the green eyes (no longer mismatched, not that Tash knew they ever were) and down again when the latter grows too uncomfortable. Her own dark-honey eyes glitter a bit, ridiculously long dark lashes keeping the tears from falling. One hand moves to the green sock again, and squeezes it like one might a hand. Tasha's bare feet cover one another, chipped purple nail polish and a couple of silver toe rings adorning each.

She finally lifts her eyes again and then reaches over to the table for her coffee slowly. "Wow, Cole. I'm so sorry. That's… I'm sorry." She frowns a little at her bad choice of a joke. "I like it. And I have lots of socks. So you can borrow and mismatch mine any time. Like, tomorrow you can wear my Billy and Mandy sock on the left foot with my Jack Skellington on the other?" Peace offering — not that Colette seems angry at all.

Immediately Colette laughs, not even nervously this time, just a happy, contended laugh that comes with a slow nod of her head. "I've— never had a friend I can share clothes with, actually…" there's a wrinkle of Colette's nose as she considers that, "My sister's a lot taller than me too," she admits with a tug of her teeth on her bottom lip, considering her cocoa again but not really all that enthused about the prospect of trying to lean with her ribs the way they are.

Looking back to Tasha, Colette offers a smile, her hips shifting to the side, good arm reaching beneath Tasha's ankles to lift her feet, and when Colette settles back down the teen is scooting in closer and laying Tasha's legs across her lap. The blanket's carefully arranged, one end tucked around and beneath Tasha's bare feet to keep them warm. "You've got some weird socks," Colette admits with a wrinkle of her nose, reaching up to scratch at the side of her neck with one hand before obsessively straightening a wrinkle in the quilt.

"Hey, um— " Colette steps over herself conversationally, "…thanks." It comes out of nowhere, without content, and Colette's hand rests at Tasha's right knee atop the blanket. "I mean," she strains a sigh, "for everything for just— I feel kind've like, I don't know. I've been… kind've unhappy, for a long time. I'm sort've an emotional mess right now, more— so than normal?" There's a lift of one of the teen's brows. "I… You're exactly what… God I don't know how to even put this without sounding like a creeper." Giggling nervously, Colette plucks at a piece of colorful lint on the quilt.

"I don't really know how to put it, except that like… you're— different." Green eyes lift up from the blanket to Tasha. "Like, I have a friend, Kaylee. She works with us in the Ferry, and she's like… the sweetest person. I— I have people close to me, but— you're…" Colette shakes her head, looking back down to the blanket nervously. "I don't even know how to explain. So— I— I'm just going to stop. Before— I— " her hand comes up to rub across her forehead frustratedly, "I'm glad you came here," she mumbles, "because you're… like, the kind've person I always…"

Colette snorts, frustratedly. "Can you get me my cocoa?"

Tasha reaches for the mug to hand to the other. "You just haven't made me mad, yet," she warns, bringing her own mug to her lips. "I mean, I'm half Italian and half French. That means I'm loud and obnoxious, but without any cool accents or nifty swear words because my parents made me take fucking Espanol because they didn't think that anything else would be useful. Practical people, you know? I was like, I'm gonna be an art student, why do I need to hablo at anyone, right? But no. There was all sorts of jibberish about fall-back plans and the importance of being bilingual to give myself marketable job skills in a competitive job market blah blah blah blah blah."

She rolls her eyes. "So now I hablo but really badly and all I can say is where's the bathroom and the cheese is old and moldy: El queso es viejo y mohoso." Okay, so she didn't learn that one in Spanish class but in an old Pauley Shore movie. "What about you? Colette is French, yeah?"

Breaking out into a laugh again, Colette offers a goofy smile as she takes her mug, tongue sliding across her lower lip for a moment as she looks askance at Tasha. "I sucked at languages in school," she admits a bit sheepishly, cradling the mug in one hand after it's returned to her. "I ah, I never finished school though, I was still in high school when the bomb happened and… I just never went back." Rolling her tongue over the inside of her cheek, Colette looks up to Tasha and smiles at the fact she picked out the nationality of her name.

"It's French, yeah… My gramma' was Nicolette Meunier, my sister and I were both named after her. She got the Nicole, I got the Colette." There's a lopsided crook of Colette's lips into a smirk as she offers an askance look at Tasha, then down into her cocoa. "I'm a lot French," she admits with a nod of her head, "My— " the barest of hesitation, "father was half Sicilian half Irish," which is a quirky mix, "so I'm kind've all over the map."

Staring into her cocoa, Colette offers a sheepish smile. "I may look kinda' sheet white, but if I try in the summer and man do I have to bake like a turkey to do it, I can tan. It's just— slow roasting method?" There's a snicker at that, and Colette lifts the cocoa up finally, sipping at it now that it's not chocolate lava in a mug.

"Both my parents are gone though," Colette leaves it at that, but there's no sense of real loss there, very matter-of-factly stated. "My adoptive Dad's, I don't even know, is Sasquatch a nationality?" She notes with a sudden grin and a bubble of laughter slipping up into her voice. "He's a detective for the NYPD, but he's cool. He knows about me and my ability, and what I do, he— he's good people."

Tasha's full lips curl in a smile against the ceramic of the mug she holds against her chin, as if trying to absorb all the heat from it into her still-chilled body. "Sasquatch, no, but I think Saskatchewan counts. I always got those two words confused when I was a kid. He really tall or just really hairy?" she asks, before she digests the words NYPD and detective. Shit.

Brown eyes drop and inspect the opaque brown of her cocoa, though she nods before looking up again, her breath regained. "He know you work for Ferry, or do you do all this on the sly?" she asks, a little slowly, before adding with a smirk, "And so if we ever get in a fight we'll be equally loud and obnoxious, plus you'll probably have the edge due to the Irish."

Wrinkling her nose and trying not to choke on laughter Colette just notes, "Oh god he's both. He is a sasquatch! Sasquatche— wan? Canadian Sasquatch!" There's a full on hyena like laugh from the teen, followed by a yelp and a wince and then more laughter that she tries to hold in as she shifts awkwardly to accomodate for the shooting pain in the middle of her chest. "Oh— God," she snorts out a laughter between painted noises, "laughing hurts!"

Barely able to keep her mug from sloshing around, Colette looks over at Tasha with a wrinkle of her nose before hiding her blushing grin behind the ceramic mug. "He knows, about everything. He told me not to register too, but it took me a long time to actually tell him what I do with the Ferry. But— he knows, and he'd never tell anyone. He's… he may seem all scary, but he's the nicest guy in the world, and I know for a fact that he loves me, 'cause— 'cause he didn't have to adopt me, but he did. He did because he cares, even if he's too grumpy most of the time ot say it, I know he cares. He's the best dad…"

There's a wistfulness to Colette's expression as she drinks more from her hot cocoa, silent for a time before her brows furrow together, eyes up from the drink and to Tasha. "Do… your parents know about the Ferry?"

The laughter replacing the tears from just moments ago has Tasha fairly beaming at her new friend, though she winces when Colette does. "God, be careful," she says, one hand reaching for the mug should it start to spill, before Colette seems to recover. She leans back, feet stretching a bit further until they're between the small of Colette's back and the sofa cushions — her feet are still cold, and Colette is warm.

"I'm glad you have a great dad. And a sister that you love." Her smile is happy and genuine for Colette, before she gives a shake of her head, eyes glancing back at her own chocolate again. Lifting the mug to her lips to take a sip, her eyes return to the green ones watching her. "Nah, they wouldn't get it. They're pretty yuppy law abiding types." Law abiding — that's one way to put it. One enforces the law while the other punishes those who break it.

There's a touch of a frown on Colette's lips, fleeting though as it may be. "They'll come 'round," is the optimistic response Colette offers, "if they really care about you, they'll come around eventually. I'm sure've it." Looking down into her mug, Colette furrows her brows on discovering it's empty, glancing left and right and trying to figure out how to best put it somewhere without hurting herself. Instead she just raises her brows, sticks her lower lip out into a pout and offers the empty mug out to Tasha like she's some sort of dishmaid wordlessly.

"I'm— really lucky with my family I have now. I mean, I— " Green eyes flick askance to Tasha, and Colette looks back down to the blanket, "I had some hard converstions with them. I mean… you know how hard it is to be honest with your parents sometimes, right? I— I had to have like, the most hard talk in the world with my dad twice," she admits quietly, "come out to him when I found out I had my power, and then just— come out to him." That last part is blurted out; it's subtle that way, right?

"Ss— so— you— know," Colette's eyes shift to the side, "he was really uh— understanding." The teen's lips purse to the side, green eyes flicking back to Tasha with a nervous smile. "Was that the errand thing?" She's trying ot deflect from her own admission already, too nervous and self-conscious, "You know like— I know the whole dodging thing. Nobody goes out in this weather unless it's for family or ane emrgency, and I didn't hear no sirens."

Accepting the mug and stretching to put it on the coffee table, Tasha's eyes return to Colette as she talks, a brow arching slightly when the other blurts out what might be obvious to anyone other than Tasha. Brown eyes blink but she doesn't react. She doesn't jump up or pull away or even move her cold feet from behind Colette's back where they've wriggled. Her lip quirks up in one corner in a smile, reciprocating the nervous smile from Colette.

"I don't know. I'm not Evolved, so they'd probably just try to wear me down and not get why it's important to me, or you know, the whole world." Tasha waves vaguely at the window. "And yeah. I … they're worried. Well, my dad is. My mom, I've talked to, but I haven't talked to my Dad for months and he's apparently just decided he is worried about where I am." It's nice to be able to tell some of the truth. "So I probably have to make a presence so they don't put out APBs for me, you know? Though in this weather…" she glances at the window and chews her lower lip, shaking her head. "I don't want to go out in that again."

Her eyes return to Colette, and she tilts her head. "Your dad sounds great. Wanna trade?"

There's an immediate relief of tension at the reaction, and Colette slouches just a little back against the sofa with the continuation of conversation rather than anything she might have been imagining. It was never this easy in her mind whenever she played out telling people the various quirks and oddities of herself, but at the moment that revelation is enough to be said on that. "Sorry, find your own Sasquatch," Colette notes with a crook of a smile, "maybe a yeti?" She adds impishly, teeth playing with her lower lip.

"Um, look if— if you do have to go talk to 'em, I can totally play wing— uh, winggirl? For— you?" That's an awkward stumble of her sentence, and Colette's snorted laugh comes with a dismissive wave of her hand. "We've got a truck here, uh, there's a road out to the Rookery, up in the northeast. It's super sketchy up there though, but its where all the ferries are. If you gotta' talk to your dad, I could get someone to drive us out there so you aren't doing all this on your own. Even if you gotta' talk to him by yourself, I could totally play the cop-dad card to keep him from worrying!"

There's a hopeful smile there, a bit optimistic, but these are optimistic times for Colette in some ways. "You could say you're visiting me, it wouldn't seem so far fetched. I could totally pass for an art-school kid, and Judah's a detective, so like— where else would be safer for you, right? He'd cover for you staying at his place with me, I know it."

"Mine's too short to be either, but he's pretty hairy," Tasha says with a giggle, then frowns at the rest of what Colette offers her. "I … no… I wouldn't want to bring someone else into it, you know? I'll tell him I'm staying with friends… it's not like I'm all wearing super cool fashion accessories like you for him to think I'm up to anything." She reaches out to touch the sling that Colette wears with a smirk.

"But… if you wanna help me get to the ferries you can. I just…" This is why it was easier in Boston. This is why she wasn't planning on staying — how can she navigate being in Ferry and being Vincent Lazzaro's daughter, without getting herself or Ferry or both in trouble? She runs a nervous hand through her choppy hair, a dark lock falling into her eyes in the wake of her fingers. "I'll probably have to stay at least the night at his place or my mom's. This weather makes everything so slow."

Tasha sighs, the breath puffing that lock of hair up away from her face as frustration wells up. She should have taken some drama classes last semester — her high school acting career isn't enough to cover the kind of acting — and Improv — she needs living a double life.

Worriedly nibbling at her bottom lip, Colette's brows raise and crease together, her free hand coming down to rest on Tasha's knee and give it a squeeze. Though there's a hint of disappointment in her expression, but only a little. "The Ferry's like a family," Colette says firmly, echoing the words she had told Ygraine all those months ago. "Family helps each other out, doesn't matter the risk or nothin', 'cause it's what's right." Then, nervously letting her hand slide away from that knee, Colette casts her gaze over to the crackling fireplace.

"Besides, Ferry or not, you— " she hesitates, voice hitching, eyes darting back to Tasha, "you're a friend, and if I'd take a bullet for a friend, I'd totally take an angry parent too…" Bobbing her head in a series of tiny nods, Colette rolls her good shoulder, carefully, into a shrug. "I won't be upset or nothin' if you still wanna' go on your own, but— don't ever think s'too much to ask for me. I kinda' go out of the way for friends, Ferry or not."

Then, with a tug of her teeth on her lower lip again, Colette offers a side-long look at Tasha, her hand lifting as she brushes a lock of dark hair away from one of her green eyes. "A friend've mine… made me realize that— that it's time I start doin' stuff to help make me happy, 'cause m'always doing things for other people or just— putting my life on hold for them." That's a bit off of a fit into that sentence, "I— I like you, I mean— so— if you ever need help. I'm there." Colette manages an awkward smile, looking away from Tasha and back to the fire.

The lecture on what Ferry is, what Ferry means, has Tasha biting her own lower lip and glancing down. She gives a few jerky nods to show she hears and she understands. Her brows knit together, hating herself for possibly even maybe hurting Colette's feelings by rejecting her. The last bit — the word like has a different connotation than it would have just minutes ago, and her cheeks flush a little with the new knowledge she's gained.

She sits up a bit straighter so she's no longer leaning against the sofa's arm. She touches the other's arm lightly. "I know. You're amazing, Cole. You're so giving and you took a bullet for me and I can't even thank you right for it, besides make you some bacon," she says earnestly. "Don't worry about it though — okay? I won't go if it's too dangerous — the weather, not my parents!" She smirks at that. "You — you can come with me on the ferry and just wait for me somewhere, if you really want, in Manhattan."

Eyes a bit wide at the hand on her arm, Colette looks up to Tasha silently, then just nods her head sheepishly and offers a somewhat bashful smile. "I— I should see my dad too anyway, injury or not. He— he deserves to know what's goin' on in my life, so— you're in the right about going to see your dad. I'll come with you though, 'cause nobody deserves to be alone in this shit weather, right?" There's a crease of Colette's brows as she slants her head to the side, dark bangs falling over one eye. "You're new here, and this city'll eat'cha up in you aren't careful."

"Besides," Colette's smile grows just a tiny bit and she shifts her weight to one side very slowly, leaning just a touch closer to Tasha, "I bet your dad's real worried about you, and might like to spend some time with you too, you know? I— can't hog you all to myself," Colette notes with a roll of her eyes and a toothy smile, "I will try though."

At least she's honest.

Tasha smirks at the talk of her father wanting to spend time with her, and gives a shake of her head, opening her mouth to speak before Colette shamelessly flirts with her. Caught mid-open-mouthed-smile, her eyes shift sideways and she gives a soft laugh, eyes dropping as her cheeks grow rosy again.

"All right. We'll go together, and we'll drop you off at your dad's, and I'll go to mine, and meet up again. And I used to live here, remember? Big Apple born and bred. I'm not some little old lady from … from … Minnesota all wide eyed from St. Olafson's Farm, you know? Ya, which way to the smorgasbord. Jeez, I want some meatballs, don'cha know!" she says, in a very, very bad Swedish-ish accent. Comic relief to the rescue!

Bursting out laughing again, Colette's smile grows wider and the teen offers a wince to Tasha and a slap of her good hand to her knee. "Stop— being funny!" Colette squeaks out in protest, "At least till I'm not all aaaah from feelin' like I got kicked in the chest," her nose wrinkles in feigned fury, making her look something like a very frustrated kitten swatting at the light of a laser pointer.

"When we get back from spendin' time with our families…" Colette offers with a raise of one brow, teeth toying at her lower lip as she glances down to the quilt, then back up to Tasha, "I'll have a surprise for you," she notes with a wrinkle of her nose, "so— " she's trying to act all cool and sly, "don't go runnin' off without me, gotcha?" This may well be the first time in a long time that Colette has felt free to be happy, without worry for the future, without worry about whether or not she's pining over a heart that was never hers to begin with.

"Also," Colette asks, very seriously, looking back to Tasha, "what's your favorite color?"

Tasha smirks at the laughter — it's easy to like someone who finds you hilarious! — but then frowns as the other girl winces again, her face pulling into a contrite moue. "I'm sorry. I will be boring and solemn and talk like Charlie Brown's teacher from now on. Mwah-mwa-mwaaah-mwa-mwah," she says in the monotone 'grownup voice' of the Peanuts specials.

Her eyes narrow and she shakes her head. "You don't have to get me anything, Cole. You already … you're already my friend and that's more than I expected to find here, okay? And… I think… green is my favorite color." She gives a shy smile. "Like your eyes. Mine are so boring and brown. I wish I had green eyes. My mom's are green — but more like an olive, normal green. Yours are like… green."

Colette pretty much just stares at Tasha, wide-eyed, one corner of her mouth twitching up into a smile as she tries to shrink back and duck her head down between her shoulders in emulation of a turtle — a bright red turtle. There could be commentary about the topic of gifts and friendship, anything right now, even dreaded laughter again at the mocking muffle-voice that Tasha offers up. But no, that girl sitting next to Colette had to say her favorite color was green, and not just green like trees, green like grass, but green like your eyes.

Biting down on her lower lip, Colette is absolutely speechless, caught in that same mouth open trying to speak but can only smile expression.

"You're my favorite hallucination ever," Colette breathes out weakly, whisper as much as words.

"Damn, girl, someone needs to teach you how to take a compliment," Tasha says with a grin for the shy-turtle evasion tactics her friend undertakes to try to duck away from the compliment as if it were acid.

"And quit calling me a hallucination or I'll think I don't really exist, and then I might cease to exist, because weird shit like that happens. I know this because," she says in a solemn and earnest voice, "because it was on a Buffy episode, and life imitates Whedon. And sometimes it imitates JJ Abrams. Sadly this means there aren't any happy endings and nothing makes sense after the third season." She has her own evasion techniques down pat.

Glancing at the clock, Tasha pulls her feet away and to the ground. "I said I'd make dinner tonight — wanna help?"

The kitchen — with all its sharp knives and hot surfaces — should be less dangerous than the couch.

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