Over A Bowl Of Oatmeal


koshka_icon.gif sable_icon.gif

Scene Title Over a Bowl of Oatmeal
Synopsis The first morning after arriving at the Garden and Sable sits down with Koshka over some oatmeal and gets to know the girl a little better.
Date December 11, 2010

The Garden

Every action sets up the equal and opposite, and so Sable pays for her vigor and activity with pain and a deep wish for idleness in the wake of her exertion. Thanks, Newton. Way to be a pal.

Almost every voluntarily mobile part of Sable aches, and she lacks the habitual inclination to crack into the pain killers stashed with the first aid stuff that the Garden has stocked. All for the best. She'd have to tangle with her guilt over plundering emergency care supplies just to handle the consequences of her own essentially sort of crazy and neurotic spurt of activity. And at least they have plenty of firewood, some portion of which steadily oxidizes and combusts in the iron belly of the woodstove.

The kitchen is, in fact, just where Sable is, lying - full body - on the great oak table, the heels of her socked feet just peeking over the edge, her arms splayed out at either side of her. She's got a grimace fixed to her features, yellow eyes narrowed at the ceiling. On occasion she lets out a low, pitiful moan which, after some first curiosity-provoking incidences, have ceased to be of any note to either of the dogs, who are currently in the living space.

Note, Sable may be lying down, but it's not on the job as such. There is a pot on the boil, though the water is not yet boiling, and some oatmeal stands nearby, vigilant in its tall, round container. Sable's culinary skills are limited, but she's she knows how to follow some basic goddamn instructions. It's morning, fairly early, though not as early as yesterday - that's something she'd be hard pressed to keep up. Pale light creeps through the blinds, slashing white lines across Sable's body, which is a bit sooty, her tanktop and cargo pants fairly reeking of woodsmoke. Ah, rustic living.

Some fight night in a new place, no matter how or where you'd slept before, a little rough. And though exhausted from the late night escape from the city, the insatiable curiosity and concern over her new place in the world didn't help make Koshka's night a particularly easy one. Still! Light is beginning to creep through the windows which means she can stop trying and start finding her footing.

The teen, still wrapped up in a hoodie and cap (she'd traded the sweatpants in for her own well-loved blue jeans), unfolds herself from whichever corner or patch of floor had been granted to her for the night. She yawns and stretches, blue eyes taking a quick peek around. Time to find out what this place is about.

The sounds coming from the kitchen seem most interesting at the moment, the furnishings and whatever else is hidden inside can be looked at later. Don't worry, she's a pickpocket by necessity. Doesn't seem too likely she'll have to work that art again soon. Quiet as can be, Koshka creeps toward the kitchen. Her head pokes around first, a puzzled expression writing itself on her features at Sable's laid out appearance.

An arm arches up and drapes over Sable's eyes as she gives another pitiable groan and slooowly levers herself into a sit, sparing no theatrics in her gesture, more a Broadway display of pain than actual discomfort. That's how she tends to cope, by throwing it all out there into the world, bigger than life. Keeping it locked inside would make her implode with the sheer density of feeling.

Koshka is as stealthy as a ghost, or at least the stealthy kind of ghost, i.e. not the kind with the chains and the wailing. As such, Sable doesn't immediately detect her presence. Her squinted, slightly redding eyes peer over at the pot, whose contents have started to roil in internally vaporous upset. Thank God. Sable could use some chow. She scoots slowly to the edge of the table, knees bending as her calves tilt and then dangle over. With a push, she lands on her feet, shoulders rolling as she tips her head back and forth, working out the kinks or at least making motions that, in her mind, are connected to kink-working-out.

A few soft, sockfooted pads as she's at the stove, popping open the value size oat container and pouring the contents into the boiling pot, eyeballing the portions because yeah, directions are okay she guesses, but Sable is still leery of rules in general. No man nor God nor smiling Quaker dude will tell her what to do. It's when she turns around from the stove, setting her hands on the small of her back and pressing, arching her spine, that she spots the wayward waif in the doorway. A few blinks precede a crooked grin.

"Mornin', sunshine," Sable says, stepping forward and tipping over to lean on the table, elbows resting at its edge as she gazes across at Koshka, "hope y'all like oatmeal 'cause that's what th' fuck's on th' menu this fine mornin'. Y'all sleep okay? Didn't get too chilly, didja?"

Even before she's noticed, Koshka moves into the doorway. Her brows draw together, lips pulling up at the corners into an amused grin while she watches Sable right herself and settle into a more normal seeming morning routine. She lifts up onto her toes to see what's being done at the stove, not daring to step any further into the room. Mmn, oatmeal.

Koshka sinks back onto her feet when Sable turns around, meeting crooked grin with an easy going one of her own. "Oatmeal's great," she replies, in all honesty. Ever hungry, you won't find much the teen won't turn down so long as it's edible. "Slept fine," she continues, "not too cold or anything." She ventures a step further into the kitchen, though still keeping a courteous distance, hands tucking into the pockets of her jeans. "Is um… Can I set the table? Or something?"

"Jesus, gal," Sable says, pushing herself upright, crooked smile still in place, "ain't you the picture 'f Christian-type consideration. If I'd've been as well mannered when I w's yer age, well… I wouldn't be here, that's all I know. 'course, here we are both, eh?"

The older woman tips a wink before extending an arm and pointing her finger, pistol-like, towards a set of drawers. "Knives 'n' forks 'n' shit 'r' in there. Plates 'n' all just above. Y' wanna be helpful, I sure as hell ain't gonna complain. Hell, I'll thank y'." Sable dips in a small bow, complete with hand flourish, though the motion causes her to wince with pain. "Rgh… hee… thank y'," she manages through clenched teeth.

Sable toddles over to another set of cabinets, pulling them open and searching around inside for something around, pushing around cans and boxes. "Which brings me t' wonderin', how it is y' did end up here. Got some story, surely, 'n' some special type thing that sets y' apart, elsewise y' wouldn't be here, eh?" She glances over her shoulder, "not that y' have t' say one damn word, but where I'm from story tellin's jus' how y' get t' know a person, 'n' seein' as yer th' new pup in this here den 'f mine, I wouldn't mind hearin' 'bout how y' got here, if y've a mind t' share."

To be blunt, Koshka looks surprised at the assessment. Her dad would've given her such a stink eye if she didn't at least offer? "No big deal," she says as she follows directions, finding spoons and bowls. These are placed on the table without much to-do. "You don't even have to thank me.

The teen goes quiet, albeit briefly, at the question, straightening the spoons unnecessarily. "I got here with Brian and Robyn," she explains. Though that's surely not the answer Sable was really looking for.

"Jesus, noone calls 'er 'Robyn', 'cept her special lady friend," Sable says, giving a snicker at the name, "I mean, call 'er what y' will if she don't mind either way, but she's Quinn most common, 't least far as I c'n tell." She emerges from the cupboard with a box of brown sugar and a foil bag of storebrand raisins which she tugs open and sniffs at the contents of. Seems okay to her.

"Don't get too polite with me, hon," the yellow eyed woman warns, good-humoredly, moving over to set the oatmeal augmenters on the table before going back to the pot and peering inside, eyeballing its cooking progress just as she eyeballed the portions. "I'll start thinkin' this is some sorta con yer pullin'."

That oatmeal will need a couple more minutes. That's okay. Sable moves over to the table and takes a perch in one of the chairs, peering at Koshka with tilted-head interest. "Y'all givin' me that real short-type answer 'cause y' don' wanna get int' why it is yer really here, or are y' jus' bein' coy, hon? 'cause I'm a chaser, I'll warn y' straight off. You be forthright, hon, or I'll hound y'. I'm persistent, y'all ask anyone."

Quinn then. Koshka shrugs, she hadn't been sure what to call the woman and Nurse Falafel just didn't seem right. She watches Sable add to the table, eyes following the raisens and brown sugar then lifting up to the woman again. "Sorry," the girl responds to the warning, grin returning. "I'll mind my manners."

The teen, as the question comes around again, picks at the table top. It was worth a shot, taking that angle, but she told Ygraine how she ended up where she was. Why try to further hide it? "Kind of ran away," Koshka explains. She could have said it was cold outside. "I've been living wherever I could find for a few months. Things are getting harder, and being not registered—"

With a shrug, Koshka lowers herself back into a chair, hands resting on top of the table. "Ygraine helped me out of a run in with some guys, offered to find me a bed if I helped put up fliers. Then there were these dick-faced Humanis First guys and I got stuck to some crazy woman and taken to the hospital. Some doctor… he said he was never there, y'know?.. but also that he had friends who could help." She looks up at Sable, again shrugging. "Then Quinn and Brian brought me here."

The yellow eyed woman listens with a slightly furrowed brow, nodding from point to point, arching a brow at the mention of 'sticking' to a crazy woman which… doesn't make a whole lot of sense to her, but whatever, the devil's always in the details. Salvation's the big picture, and here Koshka is, saved and sound.

"More in common than I'd even thought," Sable says, tapping the side of her nose and clambering out of her seat, making her way back to the stove. "I ran from home, foster care in truth, same age as you. Won't pry 'r nothin', int' yer reasons f'r boltin'. Takes time, usually, work through that shit. But if y'all wanna talk 'bout it with someone who, like, gets it…" she catches Koshka with a look over her shoulder, "consider me yer gal.

"Was a Sage back at m' old digs," Sable says, a hint of nostalgia in her voice, absurd considering it was less than a month ago, but absurdity has never been a pejorative in the semiotics of Sable, "figure now I'm more a Denmother, but either way, y'all need me, dontcha worry 'bout botherin' me 'r nothin'. Jus' track me down. 'nless I'm entertainin' some fair lady, which case, y' know," she smirks down into the pot before removing it from the stove and setting it atop a folded rag, protecting the countertop, "render unt' Sable those things which are Sable's, dig?

"Grub's up, doll," Sable declares, giving the contents of the pot a stir with a wooden spoon, which she leaves within, "serve yerself." She moves to the cabinets to acquire one of the open, foil-covered cans of condensed milk, and adds some water to it, diluting it into near-normalcy. "Y'all touchy 'bout whatall y' c'n do, honey?" she inquires, lightly, "'gain, ain't gonna pry, but it'd be pretty fuckin' cool t' know ahead 'f time if y', like, turn water int' whiskey. So's I don't gotta tell Ygraine t' buy another bottle."

"I didn't run away 'cause of anything," Koshka says. Back to the table top. "Well, I mean… I did but not from foster care or whatever. My dad told me to run. Because Registration is completely asanine and I sort of went off and used my ability on him." She pauses, glancing up at Sable. "In public. People saw. So Dad said to run and avoid companies." Or The Company, hard to say when you're in a rush and only half listening.

The teen picks up her bowl and moves around to table to scoop out a helping of oatmeal. "Not touchy about it," she says on returning. "It's part of me. Little freaky at first, but it's come in handy. —Basically, I can sort of manipulate dust and sand and stuff. Like… kind of make clouds, sometimes it'll cut skin and clothing, others it usually just gets into eyes and noses and distracts."

"Been a strict policy 'f mine, avoidin' companies 'n' suits 'f all sorts 'n' stripes, pin 'r otherwise," Sable pronounces, as if delivering some profound wisdom, as if any company (or Company) in their right mind would take her. She spoons out healthy dollops of oatmeal into her own bowl, adds milk, then moves to the table, tossing in the other components to add a little sweetness and variety to the warm, wholesome blandness of the oats. A few experimental bites are taken, leading to a nod of self approval and then…

Abandonment of her meal, at least for a moment. Without further words, she leaves the kitchen, sauntering into the living space. When she returns, she's got something clasped in her hands. She halts not far from Koshka, cupped hands carefully releasing a small stream of pale ashes, gathered from the hearth, creating a pile on the kitchen table. Sable steps back, nods at the pile. "Show me."

The teen also adds in a modest amount of brown sugar and raisins to her dish of oatmeal. "Not sure what he was talking about. Mostly I just tried to avoid people who looked official," she says as she stirs the mixings into her breakfast. She takes a bite, and then another, barely taking time to chew the raisin bits before raising a full spoon again.

When Sable leaves the table and moves into the other room, Koshka's eyes follow. Her eating slows as she turns, spoon remaning in her mouth while the yellow-eyed woman returns. Her own blue eyes fall to the table as the ash is laid out, then lift again at the request. It's almost in suspicion as she withdraws the spoon from her mouth. She may not mind using her ability, but it seems a little daunting to be asked to do it.

After placing the spoon back in her bowl, Koshka looks back to the pile of ash. The effects aren't spectacular, but soon after her focus is on the ash it bursts as though hit by a sudden wind. The particles go everywhere, scattering into a vaguely cloud-like grouping but without any real control or direction, save that they don't fall toward the teen. After just a handful of seconds, the particles, those that haven't already stuck to anything, settle and fall to land on whatever surface they please. The girl lets out a short breath and returns her attention to breakfast, careless of any ash that might have fallen into her bowl and shoveling in a sound mouthful.

Koshka's eyes lift to Sable in askance as a second spoonfull follows the first. Whatcha think?

The trouble with this demonstration is that Sable happens to be near opposite to Koshka, and as such she is not protected from the burst of ash. A section of her top, already a bit grubby, is suddenly layered with a fine skin of spent cinders, dusky grey. She blinks, then slowly swipes her hands down her front to clear herself off the grime.

"Figure," Sable says, smiling slantedly, "y'all gonna have t' practice b'fore y' c'n kick up dust storms or anythin' like that, eh?" She tugs a sleeve up over one hand, using it as an ad hoc duster, brushing the ash free of eating and sitting surfaces, before beating the sleeve free and moving back around to her seat. "Damnedest fuckin' thing. How long y' known y' could do that, eh? How often's th' occasion, I gotta wonder."

Oops. Should have given a moment to let Sable clear out. Though Koshka seems quite content to watch the woman as she follows up with another spoonful of oatmeal. She could almost appear impassive, of not for the light of amusement in her eyes. The teen taking strides to keep her expression neutral.

"Since August," Koshka answers, scraping the last remains of breakfast from her bowl. "Sort of just happened and… Usually I only use it when I need to. Kind of looks strange when out of nowhere dust flies up and all over." As she's just demonstrated. The teen finishes off her last bite of oatmeal before continuing. "I mostly used it… for picking pockets. Didn't always work, still doesn't, but—" She shrugs.

The mention of larceny seems to pique Sable's interest, and she gives Koshka a sly look over her bowl of oatmeal, which is slowly steaming it's way to lukewarmess. "Y'all got some sticky fingers, then?" she says, more rhetorically than anything else, "never could quite get smooth 'nuff t' lift right off a person like that, always got fuckin' nabbed, had t' run f'r it. Freaked me out, gettin' shouted at, gettin' spotted. Plus, like," she points at her eyes, "sorta too easy t' ID, if I got a rep. Always tended t' do short cons 'n' th' like. I c'n talk folks outta money easier th'n I c'n lift it."

Petty criminal shop talk seems to be an object of some nostalgia for Sable. She's talking almost as if this were some aspect of a 'good old days'. She nibbles at a raisin before jabbing a slightly mealy spoon towards Koshka. "How long were y'all on th' run b'fore th' Ferry found y'?"

"Wouldn't say I was good at it," the girl admits, cracking into a sheepish grin. She probably succeded as often as she was caught. "Just managed enough to get by. And there were some charaties I could go to. Before the riots and people got really picky and only catered to the registered." She glances into her bowl, as though thinking it might have refilled itself, then pushes it aside to set it out of her mind.

Elbows come to rest against the edge of the table, and Koshka's hands cradle her chin. "Since… August. All sort of happened at once. I manifested and beat down my dad over registration, he told me to run away."

"Well, I can't say I've ever had trouble like yers," Sable says, giving Koshka a level, 'straight talkin'' look, "but I can tell y' - yer where y' should be, if y' wanna lay low 'n' be safe. Sure, shit's been crazy since th' big blowout in November, but I figure most 'f this is a matter 'f a sorta people, 'n' better people it'll be hard t' find," she gives a sniff, "some mebbe a little too, like, straight-laced f'r my tastes but," she cracks a smile, "I'm runnin' th' show here at th' moment, so that ain't somethin' y' gotta worry 'bout."

The girl sits back, a sort of smug, 'I can take care of myself' look to her. "I don't want to just hide," she says. "I mean, sure while the hospital's all freaking and wondering where their little unregistered Evo-girl got to. But after that?" Koshka shakes her head and gathers up her bowl. "No way. There's things happening that should be a choice, not a requirement." Stepping over to the sink, the girl gives her bowl a quick rinse and cleaning.

"Then if y' ain't plannin' t' jus' hide," Sable inquires, leaning back in her seat and peering sidelong at Koshka, "Whatall is yer plan?" She doesn't sound necessarily doubting or even skeptical. It would be an exaggeration to call her tone 'encouraging', perhaps, but Sable isn't one to dismiss the rebellion of youth which, to her, is central of her own philosophy. The kids are alright.

The question gives Koshka pause. She loweres the bowl into the sink and turns to regard Sable. Honestly? She hadn't given it much thought. However, "Go find Petrelli and kick him in the teeth until he realizes he's wrong?" That'd be a good start, at least in her mind. "Try and talk sense into the people out there who walk around like mindless sheep believeing whatever they're told. —I don't know."

Sable polishes off her own food in short order, her eating habits far from restrained, let alone refined. She pushes her bowl away from her in a grand gesture of renunciation. Food? Done with that! She tips her chair back onto its hind legs, hand gripping the edge of the table to keep her in place, a risky move but one she's not likely to discontinue until she really ends up hurting herself. "Y'all got vision," she says, "thass good. Y'all gonna wanna be practical 'bout it, but I ain't th' person t' talk to 'bout that. Vision, though, vision I c'n get behind. What I got too. All I can tell y', though, is that there's some use th' Ferry c'n put y' to, if y' stick 'round. Dunno if it'll be 'nuff. Sure know it ain't quite 'nuff f'r me. But it's a start."

Any inch gained in the right direction is better than nothing. Koshka returns to her seat at the table and nods slowly. "If I had the means to do it, I'd take out that joke of a president and all his buddies." High hopes, but she's sincere. "What sort of use could I be of the Ferry?"

"Hey now," Sable says, lifting hands to shoulder level, "if yer talkin' 'bout destruction, dontcha know y' c'n count me out. But hell, things as they are, they need 's many able hands 'n' bodies as they c'n muster, eh? Movin' shit, findin' folks, seein' that those on th' run stay safe. Plus I know some parts 'f th' Ferry go do damned fool things with guns 'n' shit, but that ain't my area of expertise. I make love, not war." She pushes herself to her feet, knees popping, another wave of aches sweeping over her, "when Colette gets back, she c'n give y' a better idea 'f whatall y' c'n do. Jus' stick around, hon. Plenty needs doin'."

Koshka breaks into a slow grin, understanding but amused all the same. The likelihood of her taking out anyone is slim, though she’d like to think herself capable of it. Of course, you never know until you’re faced with the situation and that’s something this teen hasn’t ever been faced with. “I’ll stick around,” she agrees, grin sobering to something more humble. “Find out how I can be useful and stuff.” It’s the least she can do, for all the help the Ferry has been so far, even if it’s nothing so grand as destroying the government.

The youth helps clear away the rest of the breakfast stuff. Surfaces are again wiped down and all traces of her display cleaned up. Don’t need the ash left lying around to get into food, after all. Once the remainder of the oatmeal has been dealt with, Koshka goes off to help Sable with other tasks. While the older woman had strained and worked muscles the day before, so the teen takes over with hauling and splitting wood. Any other chores that pop up throughout the day, she’ll join in as well. Helping, however she can.

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