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Scene Title Pests
Synopsis Mynama's plan to sneak into the Bannerman Castle pantry after hours is interrupted by Huruma, but she gives the girl a better treat than a post-dinner snack.
Date June 23, 2011

Bannerman Castle

It is after the dinner hour, and after the cleanup, where everyone bustles in and through the kitchen to scour it for tomorrow's use. Everything in it smells of detergent of some kind- the soapy slick smell of dishwater since drained, and the shine of old pots still hanging to dry completely. Somebody has taken the compost out already, and the water taps are cranked off, leaving the kitchen eerily devoid of signs of inhabitance. Huruma was here for the last legs of the clean-up, preferring to help only until she is able to take a refection of her own and find a glass to put a drink into.

Granted, she and the other adults take great care to keep hard liquor out of sight, apart from some wine at meals; the dark woman is furtive about her aloneness in the kitchen, keeping an idle mind on the hallway outside, and an eye towards the door once in a while. She sits at the metal table to one wall, the very same one she's time and time again used to peel apart game. Her feet are bare, for once, liking the coolness of stone under the soreness, and letting it sit against that uncomfortable warmth. Her jeans are worn, and her white tank top half-untucked. The cotton is still damp from water, which is telling that she was either outside or washing before coming back to the kitchen.

Whichever the case, the summer humidity has kept it from evaporating, and the warmth of the castle has kept her drinking something amber colored to a dull drag. A low-lidded, semi-sweaty haze, really, somehow fitting for the last days of on and off summer storms. Megan gave her something for the pollen reactions, at least, which without drinking has kept her from feeling any sluggishness.

Some teenagers have a natural sixth sense - able to detect when hard labor is over and done with. Not unlike a cockaroach plunged into the solace of a dark room, Mynama slips her way down the hall leading to the kitchen in sock-feet. She's already eaten, slipping out of the dining hall to who-knows-where until after everything has been cleaned and everyone has already either tucked themselves in for the night or else begun to indulge in an evening activity. Some children are catching fireflies. Others sit together with a radio or a guitar and decompress.

Mynama heads to the kitchen for an extra bite from the pantry.

She starts around the door, peeking her head into the opening before quickly drawing it back - too quickly to go unnoticed - when she sees that the kitchen is not unoccupied. She curses under her breath, brows furrowing as she rethinks her original plan, fingertips taptapping against the stone wall at her back.

It is, in fact, a lot like watching a mouse crossing the floor. Huruma can see/feel it there, and waits and waits, and at the last moment it decides that the moment is too risky and hangs back. She smiles wryly to herself when she sees Mynama peek in and duck out again. It wasn't that she was intent on watching across the room, but there is little else to occupy her time here aside from the glass in her hand.

"Kuja nje, kuja nje…" Huruma's voice drawls out past the door, and it is clear that maybe this was not her first glass. "What are you up to, ratinho?" She leans back in her chair, and stretches out her lower legs under the table. Her white eyes settle on the doorway, lidded and patient, smooth voice testing out words. "Vir sair."

Mynama tenses, her unseen eyes growing wide when Huruma's voice reaches her. Slowly, she sidles fully into the doorway, looking more wary than guilty. She wears a simple jeans and t-shirt combo, each borrowed and too-large garment hanging on her thin frame. "I'm no mouse," she says with a lift of her chin. "I was…coming to get a cup. For water." Right. That's legitimate, isn't it?

With a surge of steel in her spine, Mynama strides into the kitchen and moves directly to a cabinet and retrieving a plastic tumbler. "See?" she says holding it up, as if Huruma had reason to disbelieve her thin claim.

Huruma watches Mynama flatly as she pads across the kitchen, her tongue running up over the edge of her teeth. The unsettling look is only thrown off by Mynama's own attitude. After which, Huruma sits up again and crosses her legs out under the table, one arm on the back of the seat, and the other hand clicking nails on glass. "Water? And you waited all this time, for water?" Not only does the teenager get a dubious squint, she is almost going to be laughed at.

"No mouse, mm? Whatever you say." Huruma lifts the glass and puts the rest of the contents into her mouth. The bottle is there on the middle of the table, although she does not reach for a refill. The fingers around the tumbler gesture at Mynama, pointing with a good deal of purpose. "You feel… sketchy. You are up to something, aren't you?"

Mynama does eye the bottle on the table, but she does her best not to let her gaze linger on it. "I- no," she flatly denies, struggling to both put up her guard in front of the adult as well as construct a more viable story. "I wasn't thirsty until now," she claims, tossing one shoulder higher in an attempt at nonchalance. She turns to the sink and fills her glass, making a show of twisting the knob again before plunking down on the other side of the table from the other woman. Holding her gaze, she drinks for as long as she can, sputtering slightly when her mouth is too full and she swallows just a little too late.

After controlling a cough and what little of her dignity is left, Mynama lifts her chin again. "What are you doing in here? It's nice outside - why shut up in here where it's stuffy?"

Almost cute, the way Mynama puts up the front of a much more deliberate person. Huruma watches her again, still searching her teeth and allowing the pink in her mouth to flash as she does so. A sigh exits through her nose, threatening to break into a laugh when Mynama sputters and chokes into her cup of water. At the very least, it puts a knowing, odd little smile on Huruma's lips.

"It is probably going t'rain tonight, again…" The tall woman begins with an intake of breath, and goes into something that is nearly winded in its pace. "And I'd prefer t'stay where people know I am, in this sort of state. Usually I am not as depressing, when I drink, but, you know-" One hand rolls about at the air. "When I am, I can tend t'be awful, sometimes."

Mynama's eyes widen slightly before they squint with curiosity. "You don't like the rain?" she ventures, one eyebrow climbing slightly higher on her forehead. She turns her head slightly to one side, letting her eyes slip from Huruma's face to the bottle on the table. "If you want help…" but she doesn't finish it. As much as she admires Huruma, she isn't about to risk anything by openly asking for some of her booze.

"I like the rain," she offers before finishing off her water with a smaller gulp. "The way it sounds, I mean. And the smell after."

"No, no. I love th'rain. I don'like th'clamminess this place has, afterwards." So it is much easier to simply not go there. Huruma puts down the glass and peers at it, linking her hand with the one slung behind her on the back of the seat. Her forearm bands across her chest, wiry in its own way. "I won'risk what little clout I have with th'parents here by giving you any." Huruma purses her lips at Mynama.

"I do love th'rain. But at th'same time I have some reasons not to. Storms are all well an'good. Flooding, not s'much. Disease, not s'much. Having t'sit under a cardboard hide in th'mud while it pours."

Mynama pouts at the refusal, slumping back in her chair and lifting a foot to press against the edge of the table. Huruma keeps her attention, though, and the teenager continues to squint at the older woman. "Did you do that a lot?" she asks, her voice losing that edge, replaced with a childish curiosity, though she retains her amoeba-like posture. "Like, with the security people here?"

"Do what, now?" Huruma questions, eyes narrowing and her dry mouth wetting a bit. "Hiding under boxes? Or giving children drinks? I don'do much of either, these days. I had to when I was your age, an'younger." She shifts in her seat, pushing herself to her bare feet and crossing the room with her glass. This time, it is Huruma getting the water. "I've been in th'trenches, so t'speak, with Special Activities. Mud and blood."

"Curious little thing, aren't you." Huruma mutters this just loudly enough, peering over her shoulder at the teenager.

But Mynama doesn't look over her shoulder at Huruma, even when she hunches slightly, glowering at her foot. It would be childish to protest the term little, especially when everyone is so much smaller when compared to Huruma. "I just wondered," she mumbles, casting her gaze to the floor and spinning her empty glass between her fingers.

She's silent for a few moments more, then sighs. "Everyone has such an interesting life," she grumbles. "All this stuff they've done, or get to do when there's stuff to do." Not like being swooped up by government goons and rescued by an underground organization and kept on an island for close to a year.
"Interesting? Dangerous.. long.. hard.. We are doing what we are doing for all of you. I apologize if that bores you." Huruma scowls now, turning off the water with a heavy crank of her wrist. "If you wish t'be a part of putting your skin on th'line, by all means, make yourself available. We can teach you how t'be like us, certainly, but tha'comes at a price…" She waits, water in hand, having turned herself to face down Mynama. Her face is still, and her body is the same until it eases back to the table, and into her chair.

"If you are willing, you don'ave t'rely on me t'teach you things. Anyone wit'security can. Nora, Benjamin, Liza, Jensen…" Huruma makes another vague gesture with her hand. "Learn t'follow instructions, an'how t'shoot, an'there you go. They used t'build Company agents on much, much less. I've killed some.. an'that Hart, what a tool." At this, the older woman snorts, though she looks pained at the same time. By now, Huruma is also looking properly- and for the next few minutes, at least- drunken.

But it isn't the potentially dying part that Mynama finds so fascinating. Not really. It's the adventure of it. Her lips twist into a one-sided frown, and she looks away from Huruma with a shrug. "I'll think about it I guess," she says flatly. "I want to learn more about what I can already do. Anybody can shoot a gun."

She stands, pushing herself away from the table with her foot before she swings it down and steps over to the sink to place her glass in the basin. "If you change your mind about that bottle, you know where you can find me. I won't tell anyone." She smiles at that, as if the strange connection they share includes a risk-free avenue for minor consumption. Mynama takes a few steps toward the door, then pauses, looking back at Huruma. "VocĂȘ vai ficar bem?" she asks with a twitch of an eyebrow.

"I have been asking about that." Huruma puts in, when Mynama looks back. Late, but relevant. "Been trying t'get input, f'training you. Benjamin used t'do it all th'time. He should meet you personally, first." Her voice quiets some. "Eu vou ficar." She adds, after some thought. Her Portuguese is still not perfect, as evidenced by how she continues. "A pensar sobre o destino."

"Off with you." Huruma finally seems to demand something, waving the teenager away and sinking drowsily into the seat.

There's a faint smile on Mynama's face, more in her eyes than anywhere else, and she gives a slight upward jerk of her head as she moves to the door and slips out of the kitchen once more. She doesn't peek back in, or even shout a good night from the hall. But all the way to her room, she smiles secretly, hoping once again for the best.

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