Remember, It's Not Real


isis_icon.gif maxwell_icon.gif tamara_icon.gif wendy_icon.gif

Scene Title Remember, It's Not Real
Synopsis A day on the set of Multiple Man goes rather awry when Isis inadvertently swaps with the stunt-double.
Date July 11, 2009

Soundstage 6

Isis meanders at a lazy pace down the sidewalk, her sour mood writ plainly across the contours of her soft, ivory features. "Fucking men," she mumbles beneath her voice as, in her solitude, she is forced to face the line of her thoughts on Diogenes and Ash. Moodswings - anyone who knew the little redhead remotely well would know of her habit towards them. Suddenly her shoulders set back and her chin lifts in a determinate fashion. Each hand of little fingers tugs at the other, withdrawing the tight kiss of her dark gloves. She wiggles her fingers in a quick ripple befitting her mischievous mood. A smirk. She could learn to control her ability without Diogenes. And, she didn't need Ash, nor Trask, looking over her shoulder to protect her while she did it. So, ha!

These are the last thoughts that travel through the unstable little woman's head as she reaches out a bare hand, reaching towards the most attractive male passerby near her. Her ability hesitates for a second, drawing the man to turn around with a perplexed expression as he feels his psyche wavering uncertainly in his body. Isis is just about to let out a whoop of victory when that gutwrenching hook suddenly tugs at her stomach and sends her consciousness swapping away, colliding into the taller, more masculine form of her accidental victim. She's barely reclaimed her wits, barely managed to take in the strange senses of the strange body, when hands are around her whisking the male body off into a car. "We've got to get you to the set!" someone hollers before the car steals off and down the road. "What? Uh. Wait!" Isis begins in a masculine tone, turning around to watch the retreating vision of her rightful body, disorientated and stumbling, disappear around a corner. Too late. It was not a long drive and she… or he, rather, is soon being pulled from the car off towards the set.

Multiple Man is not supposed to be filming right now according to official studio word. That's not a very airtight lie, though. The only reason the big media outlets haven't picked up on the story that Soundstage 6 isn't host to Tears of Pasadena as noted, is because they don't really want to be responsible for another terrorist attack. But who knows how long they'll sit on that?

The soundstage is huge, with ceilings several storeys high. One end is home to an elaborate interior apartment set. To the left of that is the secret headquarters of Firebird, made up to look like the ruins of an apartment building parking garage, presumably in Midtown.

Further on down is a giant green screen setup, which is where the bulk of the activity is taking place now. Maxwell's strapped into a rig, is wearing spots on his face and hands and black fatigues. A wind machine deafens out almost all sound as he's suddenly hauled up almost to the roof of the ceiling when the director calls action!

Since all the sounds are going to be dubbed back in afterwards, people chat freely and move about. The makeup area is set along the far wall, along with the canteen for craft service. Everyone is a little on-edge, but people are going about their business. Some people are setting up for the next scenes to be shot, others are actors in full makeup waiting for their call, others are in hair and makeup in anticipation of the next item on the call sheet.

The show must go on, terrorists or no.

Youngest child — though really not that young — means that Wendy is indulged when she generally wants something. She wanted to visit the set of Multiple Man. Long hair pulled back with red shoestring, and in ripped jeans and white button down artfully painted with black curlique's, she has a visitor's ID slung round her neck and is watching the events with a great deal of interest as another hubba bubba bubblegum bubble is blown out and then popped. Fingers scrape it all up, poke it back in her mouth and she continues chewing. This is fun.

Tamara is on her best behavior, or near enough, at the moment. It's fairly simple — pay attention when attention is needed, otherwise try not to say anything more than necessary. Stay out of the way while actors are being actors, wait until the extras are summoned (again, for the umpteenth run of the scene). Most people her age would be bored with the waiting — dressed neatly for once, black jeans, a dark teal cotton tee, hair brushed back into proper order; Tamara looks her actual age, or perhaps even slightly older — but the curve of her lips is expectant.

She walks up beside Wendy, looking sidelong at the older woman. Smiles, closelipped; reaches out to grab the ID tag, drawing it up where the girl's blue eyes can study it. "Why are you here?" she asks curiously, letting the card fall back down.

Isis is pointed in the direction of the makeup crew. He scurries along, skirting around Wendy and Tamara with a husky, "Excuse me," before combing his fingers back through dark locks and falling into a seat. The first moment to relax, he barely recognizes someone tugging his hair into order as anxiety races through his veins — taking on the unknown beginning sparks of an ability of the sort Isis did not know to even exist.

The line is yanked on again and Max goes sailing up to a ledge that's barely visible because it too is wrapped in green cloth.

"Max, Max. You're still stiff in the back. Gotta loosen up. Imagine you have springs in your shoes. Vitto, pull with smoother motions. He still looks like he's being hauled up." That's the cranky words of the Assistant Director, Marlene Avoro.

"Ay Marlene! Can we break for ten? My back's pinging like mad. I need to take something for it."

The curly-haired Marlene lets out a grunt of dissatisfaction. "All right. We'll set up Patrick in the meantime. Is he here yet?"

Maxwell is lowered down to the ground and unhooked from the rig by a cluster of crewmembers. "Hey hey, I'll get that one, Vance. All right." He flashes a grin and unhooks the tie from his stomach area and walks a bit stiffly over to the makeup table.

On his way past, he nods to Wendy and Tamara, then suddenly claps Isis on the shoulder in a friendly way. "Ugh, you really think you gonna make this look good, Sandy? Good luck to ya." He gives 'Patrick's' shoulder a shove. "Marlene wants you up in the rig, butterfly. I'm gonna take some aspirin."

Seems like Isis gets to go for a ride, a straight shot six storeys up in the air. In a harness. To do stuntwork. As is the job of Patrick O'Neill, the body she currently occupies.

People have been grabbing her badge a lot so she's used to it. Not so much the extra's on the set though, usually security. There's fair chunk of Evolveds in the soundstage, but they're not so tightly packed to make her want to grab her hair and scream or worse. But there's enough to throw Wendy off that she didn't register Tamara was evo till she was right beside her. No, wrong — she felt it, just, there were so many other tugs. "Oh! I have this thing for Maxwell, I mean, he's pretty hot. So I had my dad pull some strings." She points to the ID on the end of the lanyard in Tamara's hands.

Isis walks by in her body and that's another attention grabber, even more so when Maxwell smooths on up. Curiouser and… curiouser. "Extra? I mean, are you an extra?"

Tamara wrinkles her nose at Wendy's question. "I guess that's what the word is," the girl replies. She turns to watch Isis-Patrick be shoved towards the flight rig, expression pensive. "Might want to keep a close eye on him, then," she suggests, moving a step or two back away now that she's not examining Wendy's visitor badge anymore.

"Say what?" The strange, husky tone seems to echo in Isis's ears, marking the masculine features contort in a quick cringe. He stands and turns about, pinpointing Patrick's gaze on the high reaches of the stunt riggings. "Oh…" The deadpan note bares the weight of Isis's own anxieties, his stomach already somersaulting as if the stolen body where already strapped into the equipment and being tossed towards the heavens. Someone has begun helping him into the harness, as words flow from his mouth with the useless air of programmed social interactions. "Right. Yeah. Hope you feel better…" Heights. Why did it have to be heights? While not in her top three fears, it was still up there, and that fear was creeping up to grab an instinctual hold on the unannounced, unknown, and certainly uncontrolled power born to Patrick's body. The corners of the set begin to drift in and out of focus, zooming into wide clarity before seeming to be pulled a great distance off into some strange horizon. A few fireflies wink in the dark sections of the set, taking on all manner of rainbow colors where they blink under the shadow of the desks or in the shadow of wardrobe racks.

Maxwell gets his painkillers and an on-set masseuse to drop him into a chair to work at the knots. Makes sense on a set as physical as this. But he calls a stop after a moment and winces. Too tender. Then he meanders over to the food cart where fresh donuts have just been delivered. Some production assistant assigned to him approaches with a coffee, just the way he likes it. That's still not something he's used to. He's used to being a working stuntman like Patrick, where you go get your own damn coffee, and it's certainly not a latte like the fancy drink he sips from as he watches, unconcerned, as the other stuntman gets strapped into the rig.

"Donut, ladies?" Asks Max with a flourish as he holds out a box of pastries to Tamara and Wendy. "Keep an eye on him. He's one of the best acrobats in the biz." He hasn't spotted the fireflies yet, but then again, he's fairly focused on choosing just the right donut.

"Keep a close eye on him?" Why would she keep a close eye on 'Patrick' She's keeping a close eye on Maxwell and thus too is the reason that she's not seeing the little lit up motes. Nope, she's making eyes at Maxwell, smiling like a goof. "Don't mind if I do Maxwell. If I can say, I've throughly enjoyed your work." She will have a donut, and she will just graze her hand against his in the process of doing it. Because really, who wouldn't wanna touch him?

"Just like that," Tamara says, as Wendy turns the full force of her attention upon Maxwell. For her part, the younger woman regards Maxwell with a faintly detached curiosity, seemingly unaware of the figurative aura of fame and glamour that surrounds the actor. She grabs not one but two donuts, smiles her thanks at Maxwell, and proceeds to throw all 'good behavior' to the winds; Tamara pads across the stage towards the greenscreened zone and the stuntman being strapped into harness.

"I'm going to be sick," Isis is muttering to himself as the last clips of the harness are fastened into place. "Are you alright, Patrick?" one of the crew ask from over behind the stolen male form. Patrick! At least now she has a name to place to the stolen body. "Yeah, yeah! Fine, fine." He purses his lips and offers a casual shrug, that isn't so fluid given the anxiety-ridden tension claiming every muscle. He turns to eye Tamara's approach though, lofting a brow as the giant, lime-hued screen behind him begins to swirl here and there. Should one look quickly enough one might catch a glimpse of a small section of serpent-like coils rising from the blank spans of the green screen, only to fall away as if the wall were some manner of vertical ocean rather than a tool for movie making.

Max is more or less unaware of the aura of fame and glamour around him too. He's used to being on sets. Just…not being anyone of note. Not until recently, anyway. Wendy gets a grin. "Well, thankya ma'am," he says in his best mock-folksy attitude and tips an invisible hat to her.

He follows Tamara as she starts towards Patrick. "Hey, don't get too close there. Marlene'll stick you in one of the scenes where you can't even scratch for two hours if you get in her shot!" He's looking that way long enough to catch the writhe of the false serpent. He blinks. Did he…? "Did you…?" He points where he saw the apparition and glances to Wendy for confirmation.

'Patrick' has at least a few moments' reprieve while the crew checks and double-checks the harness for safety.

"See the thing.. on the screen?" Wendy answers back, rubbing her fingertips together, faint surprise on her face. She looks around to see if someone's fiddling with lights or something. "Whoever that was, they better stop, or the director will probably go Bale on his ass."

Apparently disregarding Maxwell's warning, Tamara walks right up to the stuntman in his rig, and the crew double-checking the straps, too. "You might," she says matter-of-factly, voice pitched low so as not to carry to far. "Maybe everyone else will instead. It's all okay, though. Really." And she holds out a small chocolate-covered ring to the 'stuntman', harness or no. Have a donut.

"What?" Isis reaches out towards the chocolaty treat, only to have his hand smacked away. "Ow!" Way to be macho, Isis. Yeah. He clears his throat and offers a shrug as one of the crew lucky enough not to notice the giant sea-serpent slithering through the green screen addresses Tamara. "Make room." 'Patrick's' eyes go wide as if he had been standing in line for a rollercoaster ride for this whole time and that damned locking shoulder piece had just came down and sealed his fate. Suddenly a little imp, black and winged, comes running on from beneath some poor makeup artist's skirt. "I don't wanna fly! I don't wanna fly!" The thing screeches and begins to bounce from one desk to the other, leaping up lightpoles and waving its little claws around.

"What the hell?" Patrick turns around and cocks her head to the side as if he recognized the critter. And, then realization strikes. "Oh, fuck…" If she could do that, what if she made truly horrifying things like…

Pennywise the Clown, anyone? That horrifying, fanged clown comes toddling out from the shadows. As if he weren't frightening enough, he wields an empty, needled syringe in the other hand. Now, those are in her top three fears! "Holy shit! Let me out!!!" Patrick begins to pull at the harness as the green screen begins to blur into nauseating colors.

"Aw, shit. Not again. I thought he had this under control…" Max shoves his coffee and donut into Wendy's hands and then starts off towards Patrick.

It's no secret that the stuntman is also an illusionist. In fact, that's why he's here. Acrobatics plus that ability make him very useful. The illusions might not show up on camera, but it's very helpful when it comes to visualizing what the final product will look like. That and helping the actors interact with something other than a thing covered in green cloth.

But right now, it's not helpful, it's…terrifying. Scary evil clowns with needles, imps flying under skirts and sea serpents.

Max moves towards the harnessed stuntman and gives Tamara a gentle push aside as he trots up to the man he thinks is Patrick and sets hands on his shoulders. "Pats, Pats listen. It's happening again. Remember your breathing. Remember the count." Too bad he's not reviewing the actual technique for making the visions go away. "It's not real, remember?" He knows he has to calm the illusionist down, or the whole soundstage'll be plunged into an acid trip version of Isis' imagination.

Holy crap! This is SO going on the bloopers reel. Wendy takes the coffee and the box of donuts, fumbling the latter but holding tight even as evil psycho clown is making its way, and the sea serpent. She's not freaking out like others might be because everyone knows that sea serpents don't exist. "Dude! Calm down! It's just… a few feet," she calls over to Patrick.

Tamara slides away from the attempts to push at her, preventing anyone from making contact but responding to at least Max's direction by giving him the necessary room. She sets the donuts on the floor without any ceremony, apparently not interested in them anymore. The imp flutters around, the clown stalks around the stage, the green screen ripples; Tamara continues to look at 'Patrick', smiling softly, reassuring. Even as actors, artists, extras, cameramen, and technicians otherwise occupy themselves with becoming very scarce.

'Patrick' stares blankly at the clown stalking nearer even as he tries to wrestle out of the harness. Calm down? All Isis wanted to do was crawl over the man gripping his shoulders and flee. "Breathe? Count?" Luck is the only reason even a few words are getting through the tight grip of anxiety threatening to cut off her breathing completely. She was going to faint. Do men faint? The illusion of pillows appears around her feet. Then she hears the words she needs to: It's not real. The flailing stops and the man stills. "It's not?" The reassuring expressions of Max and Tamara, even Wendy's not so kind shouting, stir up a fresh thought.

A test then. Without warning 'IT' explodes. With intention behind the ability, the sound quakes through the mostly deserted set, added to the efforts of the illusion with even the aroma of smoke as a mushroom cloud plumes up towards the roof. Probably not the smartest idea given the terrorist attacks, but suddenly the remaining mirages disappear. Then Patrick falls over with a thud.

Maxwell is more than a little bit concerned for his fellow stuntman. Or, the person he thinks is Patrick. Same difference, in this instance. "No, no it's not real, Pats, calm…" And then the clown explodes. "There. There ya go, bud… — whoah." He reaches out and grabs hold of the toppled stuntman's shoulders. He grabs hold and lowers the other down to the padded ground.

"Stay back, just give him some air. This has happened before. Don't worry." But from the look on his face, he's worried. It's been a long time since things got out of control. "Jesus, Marlene, I told you not to work him so goddamn hard."

The director stands and watches, looking rather flabbergasted.

"Someone get me a bottle of water! And some Tylenol. His head's gonna be splitting in a second. Hey, buddy," this down to Isis-in-Patrick. Max sets the back of his hand on the downed stuntman's forehead to check for fever. "Still with me?" He smiles what he hopes is a reassuring smile.

Wendy crouchs, covering the coffee and the donuts at the implosion of illusion. She's impressed, and now there's another added to her list. That Maxwell is caring so much for his co-workers? swoon Yup, Wendy looks on adoringly with a sigh.

Tamara absently holds out two Tylenol pills fished from the pocket of her jeans. For water, they're on their own, it seems. The teen remains quiet, watching Isis-Patrick patiently.

Isis's lids flutter under the heat of a high fever and the pressure of a pounding migraine. "It's gone," the body thief murmurs on Patrick's lips and husky tone. The floor-laden man looks up to Max, blinking through the haze. "That was pretty crazy, huh?" He says, lips tilted up in a half-hearted smirk. "Sorry, folks," he mumbles, glancing from Wendy the doughnut protector to the curiously helpful Tamara. He reaches up and takes the Tylenol, popping them back in a hurry to be rid of the headache. "I, uh… think I'm going to need to take some time off," Isis mumbles, peering up at the stunt rigging a last time, the sight of which instills a quick shudder through her stolen body-costume.

"C'mon bud. You can chill in my trailer for a bit." Max takes a bottle of water procured by one of the crewmembers who didn't run away and hands it to 'Patrick.' He offers an arm down to help haul the stuntman to his feet. There's a row of trailers at the far side of the soundstage, one of which belongs to him. If the body thief lets himself be hauled up, he'll start that direction.

Tamara gets a murmur of thanks for the pills, and Wendy a reassuring smile. "Well. Uh. I'd say you came to the set on a weird day, but every day seems to have something lately. Come back day after tomorrow. We're blowing up the Firebird headquarters."

"You bet! I'll be here!" Cause the pass is good, ya know. Wendy grins, fingers drumming on the box, and watches Maxwell and Patrick with a secret little smile before she walks over to Tamara. She intends to just brush her hand against the other woman's and then walk off. She's dying of curiosity.

The sybil chuckles softly, ducking around Maxwell and the once-more-aware 'Patrick' to murmur in the latter's ear. She moves on, away from them; slides her shoulder around to turn towards Wendy, waving amiably at her and just happening to deny her unobtrusive reach in the process. "Enjoy the show!" Tamara says to the visitor, before continuing towards another door.

The disheveled illusionist makes no objections to being hauled up and off towards the trailer. "Thanks," is offered politely enough to Maxwell. The feverish form does, however, falter a bit as Tamara imparts some hushed, quick whisper at his ear. He lofts a brow, turning his attention back over his hunched shoulder to try and catch a last glimpse at the woman despite the migraine stars dotting the frame of his vision. Isis-Patrick grunts and waits until there is an amiable distance before muttering a chuckled, "Strange people." Which, in turns, cues the figure to begin humming 'Stranger', by The Doors.

"Hey, you can't tell us strange there, Pats. You're the one making evil clowns and sea serpents appear. I told you to lay off the weed. I know you're stressed man, but you know drugs fuck with your power." Max says this quietly to the person he thinks is Patrick as he leads him off towards the trailer. "C'mon. Lay down for a bit, then we'll call you a car."

Life does go on in showbiz though. Word spreads that it was just Patrick's power gone a bit funny and people start to filter back. As much as Marlene wants her lead and the stuntman out again, Mr. Quinn does have some clout. Instead, they move to the next item on the callsheet, which involves, for some reason, a whole lot of people dressed in black and a golden retriever. Ah, showbiz.

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