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Scene Title Overlap
Synopsis Restored, Wireless discusses abilities and capabilities with the other Gitelman technopath.
Date October 29, 2011

Pollepel IslandBurial Grounds

Afternoon sunlight lances down through bare branches, brightening the greens of grasses and the blues of water, and warding away the worst of autumn's chill. It strikes subtle highlights from the hair of the woman sitting on a boulder just beyond the island's graveyard, bringing out hints of bronze and chestnut from dark sepia strands. No such grace is given to her worn leather jacket nor her jeans, both black as black can be where they aren't hazed by a speckling of dust. She wears a shirt the same gray-blue as the river divided by the island, though with her back to the castle as it is, that detail is not immediately visible to one approaching.

Three days ago, Hana Gitelman had come back into her rightful ability. Today, having settled into some form of re-established equilibrium with it, she returned to Pollepel Island to speak in person with the Council, or at least some of its members. She has other business still ahead of her, personal business, a monumental task long-delayed… and one that, in all honesty, can stand to wait a few hours more.

There are other personal matters also worth touching upon, while she's physically here.

So it is that Hana sits with her face turned into the light afternoon breeze, listening to the endless electronic susurrus overhead and to the fewer, louder communicades coming from those on the island with her. Contemplates what she knows of the person she wishes to bespeak. Chooses a frequency, atypical, something no one else in the vicinity is using. Casts out a message, a summons.

Noa, Wireless. Where we last met. When you're free.

It isn’t often that Noa’s surprised in a fight, especially with a less-experienced opponent. She’s working with a young man her age but who’s lived a far easier existence until the past year, teaching him self-defense in the courtyard when that call comes through. It isn’t one she’s expecting, so when she cants her head to listen, she finds herself punched in the nose — by someone who isn’t well-versed enough in sparring to pull the punch.

He also outweighs her by about ninety pounds.

“Fuck!” she swears, tipping her head back to keep the blood from flowing, her hand moving up to pinch the bridge of her nose. “Good job, actually. I’m going to go take care of this. Next time make sure you don’t leave yourself so open on the attack though.”

Holy shit. You’re back. On my way.

It’s quite a few moments later when Noa’s feet can be heard approaching the spot Hana sits, her eyes seeking out the lean and tall form of the woman. “Hey,” she says, her voice quiet, but her eyes sparkling with excitement.

Outwardly, quiet surrounds Hana as she waits — the soft lapping of water past shore, the idle calls of birds, the rustle of air past her ears. It is… not so peaceful as it was, before her ability was restored, because that ability exists on a completely different world from quiet.
In all honesty, she'd gotten used to being alone in her head.

Distracted by inward noise, it's only belatedly that Hana hears Noa coming up behind her; she turns just a moment before the girl reaches her. She inclines her head slightly, patting the empty space on the stone beside her in silent invitation for Noa to be seated.

I would like to get a better sense of what you can do, now that I have more than words alone to gauge by.

The teenager doesn’t speak again, not aloud, anyway, when her mother stays so quiet. She moves to sit at that tacit invitation, looking out in the direction of the water, then back to Hana. She looks a little nervous, now, her posture a little more tense, and Hana probably knows enough about herself as well as the girl next to her by now that Noa’s worried about not being enough.

Wireless is back. Noa’s power feels small in comparison.

I’m still figuring it out a little, sounds a little apologetic in tone. You have any requests? is a bit more of a joke, as if she were little more than a radio deejay.

Hana casts a sidelong look at the girl beside her. We are all always learning, is a statement — very nearly an aphorism — practically worthy of Drucker, were he able to hear it. He can't, but the thought brings a faintly rueful twist to her lips. Just for you to demonstrate your frequency range, low and high. I would like to know how much we overlap.

You use digital radio signals, obviously, Hana continues. Because Wireless herself does. Analog, as well? Distance?

There’s a nod at the word analog, but Noa tips her head at the word ‘distance.’ She sniffs a little and brings a hand up to check her upper lip for more blood. Her eyes find a middle distance, giving her a look similar to when she was blind, though now it’s simply a matter of staring into space as she finds her words.

Analog is easier. Distance depends on what I’m using, haven’t tested it — it’s hard to tell if a message doesn’t make it because it’s too far or no one’s there to hear it, you know? I don’t know the science very well to explain it. Really low frequencies are harder to ‘hear’ in a way, you know? And manipulate. But I can.

Noa pulls one foot up, to rest an arm on top of it. For some reason, despite the hesitancy in her words, in her terminology, talking like this with Hana seems to come easier to the teenager. Shortwave’s easiest. Familiar. Longer’s a stretch. Takes more concentration. I think that’s right around my cap. I can’t quite reach microwave, maybe with Lene’s mom helping I could. I’m playing around with radar — never thought about it until I was blind but found I could. Just need to learn how to decipher it from a distance and maybe I can be a meteorologist.

The last bit is punctuated by a slight smirk on Noa.

Hana listens attentively as Noa speaks, her own expression unfocused, contemplative. Analog… my ability doesn't take well to, Wireless offers in kind. Counterintuitive, because analog data just is, yet it's digital encodings that are transparent to me. I can reach into shortwave bands, obviously, given as that's how they're communicating, but longer bands are used so extensively that I have had little need to develop that side. She pauses for a moment, nods thoughtfully. Radar is a good idea. And perhaps we can work on defining your range. At least in terms of what you can hear — but if you can receive at range, you should be able to send. The difficulty, of course, being that the sheer scale of Wireless' range complicates such determinations.

Hana falls quiet again, still except for an intermittent tapping of fingers just above one bent knee, outward indication of musing thoughts. We might be able to design a converter for you. Something that will translate shortwave into long, and vice versa. It would be to our benefit for you to communicate directly with networks and devices using them. Her gaze flicks to the younger Gitelman. A problem for after the current issues are dealt with.

I think maybe because where we were at, when we were at, we had access to radio but not the other things, Noa says, her voice thoughtful as she theorizes on why their abilities are similar but limited in different ways. Her own feeling much more limited to her, of course. There’s always that fear of not living up to the Gitelman name.

You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, you get what you need. There’s another small smirk at the Rolling Stones quote, but it might be acceptance of her ability as enough for what she once needed it for.

Her dark eyes do dart to Hana’s at the mention of the converter, brows lifting in surprise. That would be amazing.

Hana glances sidewise towards the younger Gitelman; there's little sideband content accompanying the girl's silent communication, but she can fill in a few blanks. Identifies with them altogether too well. Every technopath I've met has been different, she remarks, looking out towards the water, the trees on a distant bank. I've never met any that could equal my reach. I am also not aware of any — save us — who are limited to remote communication. It seems common for technopaths to be able to access any nearby device, whether it is networked or not. She looks to Noa again. I have also never met two with precisely the same capabilities. Drucker and I may have been close, but he died long before I ever manifested.

Not to mention, they never even met while he lived. Not, at least, that Hana herself can recall.

The addition of popular lyrics to the conversation gains Noa an askance look, distinctly unamused but not truly crossing over into annoyed. Hana lifts a hand, palm-up, the gesture close cousin to a shrug. We make the most of what we have. That is all anyone can do.

After that perhaps surprising piece of expansive wisdom, Hana surges to her feet, then reaches out to tap one finger against her daughter's cheekbone, just to one side of the girl's nose. "We'll see about that design later. Did you miss a block," she continues, words laden with the acerbic dryness that only voice can truly convey, "or did you let yourself get distracted?"

The unspoken corollary being: either way, we clearly need to work on that.

The younger Gitelman sits and listens quietly, nodding once or twice rather than verbally — spoken or otherwise — communicating her understanding. When Hana stands, Noa looks up, only to be tapped on the face near her slightly swollen nose. It’s not broken — but it’s been broken in the past. Her lips tip up in a rueful smirk, and she too switches to her outer voice.

“The former, caused by the latter,” she says simply enough, no excuses made. “But at least it was a good lesson for Blake in taking advantage of the opponent’s weaknesses.” Her smile makes it clear she knows that little silver lining won’t appease her mother.

Noa rises to her feet as well. “I’ll work on it.”

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