Rattail and Ghost


bf_cardinal_icon.gif bf_magnes_icon.gif

Scene Title Rattail and Ghost
Synopsis Magnes talks to the Ghost of Wu-Long
Date January 1, 2012

Central Park

Not everyone has a favorite park bench, but, at least in this universe, Magnes does. He lays on a bench deep in Central Park, wearing a dirty old white suit, tie and all, top two buttons undone. He looks like he's been there all night, wearing a pair of black Converse high-tops as well.

He cradles a bottle of cheap grape bourbon inside of a brown paper bag, groaning. "Don't tell me what to do, Eileen!" he yells at the pigeons. "I know it's you in there, watching me! I'm not going home, leave me alone Eileen!" He throws a rock to try and scare the pigeons. "GO AWAY!!!"

The rock passes right through one of the pigeons as if it weren’t really there, not reacting much even while several of the others flutter away and re-land nearby. A second glance might notice that it has no feathers, or features to speak of, and is in fact simply black like the darkest night.

It spreads its wings, and sails through the air in a parody of flight, ‘landing’ on the back of the bench beside the drunken man. In a whispering, sibilant hiss of sound, it says, “I don’t think they’re listening.” …listening

Suddenly rolling off the bench, Magnes starts to back up, then stares down at his bagged bottle, then back up to the shadow. "Oh fuck, Wu-Long?!" he asks, in shock, reaching into his blazer as if trying to find something. "Fuck, I don't have a gun… and you're a shadow so it won't work anyway. Fuck!"

He pushes himself up, stumbling, pointing his bottle at the shadow accusingly. "What the fuck do you want, Wu-Long?! I don't care about all that stupid shit anymore! I'm living my own life, I'm out here, in a fancy suit, doing failed job interviews because Eileen won't get off my ass! But that's it, you know, I have it all figured out now! I just won't leave with Eileen and Gabriel anymore, I don't need that, I have gravity powers! Go to hell Wu-Long!"

The shadow pigeon’s head cocks a little to one side. Is it a pigeon? There’s a shadowy crest on its head, so it may be some other flavour of bird. A cardinal, perhaps. “Wu-Long’s been dead a long time…” …time… “And you’re drunk.” …drunk

The whispers hold a bit of dry, bitter humor, “Don’t mind me. I don’t care about your life either.” …either

"It's not fair, you know, Wu-Long." Magnes takes a seat on the bench again, then takes a drink after unscrewing his bottle. "I try to do allll the right things, and there's always a whole… thing! It's the thing in my brain, you know! The stuff, all the stuff my dad put there! Fuck him!" he shouts, practically spits out at nothing. "I don't need a normal life, I'm out here, in nature! All I need is nature, I'll live off the land, eat pigeons, I'll date Bebe!"

It’s hard not to feel sorry for the drunkard, even for a ghost like the one perched upon the bench’s back. “I don’t think there’s a lot of meat on a pigeon…” …a pigeon… “…I think you’d probably do better with McDonald’s. Maybe Slusho!?” …you can’t drink just six

“We aren’t our parents, though,” the shadow-bird whispers, “You can make your own life…” ..or something..

"I bet you weren't an experiment! You got to live life, and get taught things, and your parents didn't just up and die! Or disappear, I don't even know!" Magnes throws his head back, staring up at the sky. "Eileen and Gabriel want me to get it together, but I don't know what they expect from me!"

"I wish Abby was still around, maybe if I didn't leave everyone it wouldn't be like this. But it was too hard, you know?" He takes another long sip. "Ugh, Abby."

He looks over at the bird, squinting hard. "You have it easy, you can just be a bird and go where ever you want."

A thready, whispering laugh like leaves rustling in the breeze answers that. “All dressed up and noplace to go…” …nowhere to go

The shadowy avian spreads its wings, then settles them back, head never moving from its eyeless consideration of Magnes. “Where do you want to go, then?” …where?

"Back to the past, before everything got so difficult, before I realized I sucked at life. Back with Abby, Elvis, Isabelle, all of them. I miss them." he admits, then stands up, starting to stumble over to a tree. "I wanna go back to when there was all this hope, and limitless possibilities, and I thought I'd be a superhero."

He starts to walk up the tree, then raises his hand, sideways, his drink not spilling. "Look at me, I'm fuckin' Naruto! When do I get to be the Hokage?! HUH?! Fuckin' tree!" he stomps his foot against it, then suddenly falls down into the grass.

The shadow-pigeon bleeds into nothing, flowing down over the ground in a two-dimensional river of darkness before rising again in that familiar bird-like form beside the fallen gravitokinetic.

“Even Superman,” the darkness whispers, “Had to be Clark Kent every once and awhile.” …Clark Kent

"I suck at Clark Kent." Magnes helpfully replies, just sort of laying there now. His suit is already dirty, so why not. "All I wanted was a normal life, and to be a superhero, and I'm not good at either of them!"

He turns his head to stare at the bird, considering his possible options. The gears are possibly turning in his head. "Hey, Wu-Long, you're a shadow guy, I'm a gravity guy… we should be partners, and clean up the streets! We'll get famous and rich, forget all the doing it for the right reasons, karma never works out! Let's be superheroes and get paid money to do it!"

“You seem to have forgotten something…” The shadow-bird’s head cocks to one side, “…I’m dead.” …dead…

“You’re drunk. You don’t think I’m real, do you? You’re just talking to yourself. You’re trying to be helpful, though,” lies the shadow. …helpful

"Who cares if you're a ghost, I can permanently alter someone's gravity, why the fuck would ghost be impossible?!" Magnes finally sits up in the grass, pointing his bottle at the shadow accusingly. "Hey, listen to me! All we have to do is go beat up some gangs, or I guess we can just break into some gangs' headquarters and avoid beating them up, and then steal their money to rent an office."

He burps. "Then we put ads on the internet, Gravity Bird Bounty Hunters, or uh, Cats on Parade… no wait that's a band name. Wait, wait, we'll be The Task Masters! We use our skills to pay the bills, that's the tagline!"

The shadow stares back at Magnes for a long few moments. “You’re an idiot,” it whispers, “Is… is that it?” …an idiot…

“That’s literally the opposite of the advice I just gave you…” …gave you…

"I'm not an idiot! Eileen said get a job, so I'm gonna do that!" Magnes starts to stand, stumbling slightly, catching himself in mid-fall and magically righting himself up again. "If you don't wanna help, I'll find people who will! Don't shadow bird people need money too?"

“Ghosts don’t need anything,” is the shadow-bird’s whisper, head lifting to watch Magnes stumbling, “Maybe run this… idea… past your friend Eileen first…” …ill-conceived…

"Eileen sent me out to get a job, so I'll tell her when I find someone who agrees!" Magnes starts to stumble onto the concrete path, and every time he trips it's almost like watching an astronaut walk on the Moon or something. "You'll regret not getting in on the ground floor, Wu-Long!"

An airless sigh whispers through the wind as the other man stumbles away, and the pigeon bleeds into darkness and flows away between the shadows of the park. Poor bastard, thinks Richard Cardinal as he departs on his way, Not that I’m much better than he is…

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