Snake in a Cage


daphne_icon.gif delilah_icon.gif sandi_icon.gif

Scene Title Snake in a Cage
Synopsis Three residents of Eltingville discuss the recent ominous and frightening turn of events.
Date August 6, 2011

Oakdale Community Center

The noon sun is not overbearingly hot, but the rising humidity makes it seem warmer than it is; the clear blue sky above won't be clear tomorrow by the feel of the air. The moisture isn't the only thing in the air: there is tension and fear in the people who live here in Eltingville, their voices low in hushed murmurs.

Just outside the Community Center, a few small groups cluster here and there along the building, either having just left the lunch being served, or about to go in. Fingers now and then point to the west, and it's no question what's being discussed. Sitting on the curb, Daphne listens to the group closest to her; she's not easily missed, but they don't seem to care that they have an eavesdropper, even one with an anklet on her foot. She grimaces as she stares down the road, waiting for her lunch partner — if Sandi has heard the news already, she is probably expecting Daphne to be one of the speedster's funks.

When she can, Delilah does try to help out; with the progression of late, however, she was hesitant to go today. She did, regardless, but it so happens that she's put it off til the last minute, and is still wary about actually going inside by the time she gets there. Just because she is there doesn't mean she won't find it in her to go home again. It is not common for her to have a fear of going out, so perhaps there is something else at work here.

Walter is being babysat, the lucky devil, so when Delilah turns up she is woefully alone, and it does seem as if something is missing from her, despite being dressed in a summer dress and looking otherwise well-rested. Rather than go in, she scans the handful of folks outside before skittering her way over to Daphne from the side, lifting a hand in greeting. They see one another around, likely, but they probably haven't gotten into cahoots since the market incident. The redhead seems less worried than the others, at least- then again, maybe that is a face.

"Hey Daph! How're things? Waiting for the sky to fall?" Because people on curbs do that, apparently.

It is probably torture for Daphne, knowing Sandi. Mostly because she's never in a rush to get anywhere and tends to take things kind slow. Today's no different, hands in shorts pockets as she meanders her way towards her partner casually and calmly - if there is news that has been heard, Sandi isn't showing it openly. As Daphne comes into view, she gives a small wave and a grin, her space speeding up just a little in an effort to close the gap and keep the speedster waiting no more.

She's dressed in brown capris with a simple yellow t-shirt to go with it, looking as plain as ever as she looks from Daphne over to Delilah (Delilah, right? Ugh, so many D names!). "Hey, Daphne. Sorry, I kinda lost track of the time. I hope you ahven't been waiting too long.," She stops, standing jsut by qhere Daphne sits, nodding her head towards Delilah. "I remember you. You were the woman with the kid for sale. Delilah, right?" She's joking, of course. Right?

Daphne's brows arc at Delilah's joke, and she smirks. "Am I that pessimistic these days?" she says, then waves to Sandi before getting up off the curb, reaching around to brush off the back of her pants.

"It's okay. It's not like I've got anywhere better to go or anything better to do. I will admit, I thought of calling you and saying I wasn't coming today," she says, lowering her voice and her eyes, before looking back at both of them. "But, there's not much to eat so beggars can't be choosers."

Daphne's cheeks color a touch at the admission of actually needing to come to the center, as opposed to doing it by choice. Dark eyes dart away to where she overhears someone murmur 'possible terrorist' and she screws her lips to one side for a moment, before turning back to the two younger women.

"Yeah, that's me. Baby for sale." She smiles a moment, glancing over her shoulder to both the building and incidentally, the gossiping group near it. "I'm not sure if I feel like volunteering today." Delilah admits, her voice somewhat low and her attention moving onto the two girls. "Things are getting… complex. Not just here, but at home too. And- uh-" She squints a moment, at Daphne. "-else… where." That was vague, right?

"Walter had an ear thing, Sable's having weirdass dreams, I'm dreading visitors- my nerves are shot. And with what happened, I don't think Sable was wanting me out here either. She didn't say it out loud, at least. I'm starting to think I need to get under a wing or three."

"So, I guess you find a buyer?" One last joke "for the road", at least on that subject. Sandi looks past Daphne at the mummering people, tilting her head a bit. "I ran out of ramen, so I don't have much of a choice, really. Otherwise, I'd just be doing that. I always thought the poor college student thing was a bit of a joke, but I really would get a credit card just for some noodles right now is I had the means to." Not that she doesn't, it's just a bit of a complicated thing.

She lowers her head a bit, shuffling her feet. "What the hell's goin' on over there anyway? I keep seeig people wispering an' talking today. I feel like I'm walking down the hallway in highschool again. What 'd I miss?"

At elsewhere, Daphne bites her lip and looks down, brows knitting with worry as she nods once. Once, that was almost her life, helping with those people. "I hope whoever that was wasn't…" she whispers. The word terrorist makes her nervous.

Dark eyes dart to Sandi and she realizes the younger woman doesn't know. "Yeah, no, you don't have toilet paper hanging out your pants or anything, don't worry. It's nothing quite so easy to fix," the blonde says, the humor in the joke not reaching her face. "Some woman was strung up in a tree out closer to the water. No one who knows anything is really saying anything." Daphne's eyes drop again, down to her ankle and the hardware she wears on it.

"I don't think so." The redhead purses her lips a moment, to watch Daphne, then Sandi as she is told what has been happening. "Was she like us? or is this some reverse incident? I only heard that they found someone. Suppose they'll let us assume the worst." Delilah murmurs, teeth tugging on her lower lip. "And usually it always is the worst."

"They probably won't catch who did it. Or maybe they know and don't care. That's the part that gets to me the most. People think I don't realize that we're penned in here. Though, it's easier for me to eavesdrop that way." Delilah chances a laugh, however dry it comes out.

"What?" It's not a quiet response either, prompting a few people to look in Sandi's direction as her cheeks pink and she raises a hand over her mouth, looking at the other two with wide eyes. "What?!" she repeats quiet, taking a deep breath. "Jesus Christ, as if this place wasn't unnerving enough sometimes…" Her eyes slide from side to side, as if looking around suspiciosly.

"I don't blame them for talking. I'm not surprised soldiers aren't going around breaking up people talking about it. That's what they do in movies, right? THat's about what I'd expect…" She looks over at Delilah, scratching her cheek. "Aren't most of the people who live ehre like… us? I mean… Unless there's a Humanis Firster living here no one knows abuot." Which one could suppose is entirely possible.

Daphne's arms wrap around herself despite the warm day; her eyes dart down the street, and anyone familiar with her modus operandi knows she's close to running — the only problem is, she can't run far enough to outrun this without suddenly collapsing, as Delilah knows too well. She hasn't shared that little caveat with Sandi yet.

"I don't think it was someone living here," she says, and her eyes narrow when — as if on cue — one of the patrol vehicles drives by. Slowly, with the guard inside turning to scope the people outside of the community center. "I'm not sure if I'd feel better thinking it was a symbolic one-time thing or just random violence… either way it's bad news. It's like… it was already a cage, and we were the gerbils, and that was bad enough."

Daphne sighs, kicking the curb with her sneaker. "But now it feels like they just put a snake in the cage, too."

"Well, there are the soldiers, and I don't know if they let in blue-dots if they are spouses or something. Maybe. But yeah, most of the people here. Which means we could be a majority. Just remember that." There is a hint of defiance in Dee's explanation of this, and she seems to take some pride in that. "There's also workers, doctors, that sort of thing. Not everyone is going to be one of us."

"No? Just something to scare us? Or outside shenanigans?" Criminals are now 'shenanigans'. "There was always a snake in the cage, Daph. " Lilah frowns now, and it is a strange expression on her face, for all the smiling that she does. "You know, though, that mice can kill a caged snake, right? If it wants to." She is quiet enough, seeming to segue in and out when the patrol passes.

There's an uneasy look on Sandi's face as Delilah and Daphne look, one that, in the short time Daphne has known her, she hasn't seen coming from the younger woman. She turns and looks out at the soldiers as the pass, looking back at the way she came as if contemplating retreat.

"You make it sound so depressing," she remarks a bit dryly, known well and full that it is is, particularly moreso for some people than others. "I don't- you don't think they would actually let someone like that in here, do you? I mean…" Her expression goes flat and she exhales sharply. "I like outside shennanigans better." The talk of killing the snake, well, Sandi just chooses to up and ignore that.

Daphne looks away when Delilah speaks of snake-killing. "I just want to get away from it. Let someone else kill it," she almost snaps — poor Delilah only seems to get Daphne in situations Daphne doesn't want to be in, and never the more cheerful of times. Not that there are many of those in this city.

She then looks at Sandi, and snorts a little at the younger woman's question. "Here's a news flash, kid. They don't care about us. They only want it to look like they do. If they cared about your safety, would they let a criminal like me come and hang out and eat lunch with you? If they thought she was a terrorist," she jerks her head toward the group who mentioned the word, and the group is now watching the impish woman who is no longer whispering, "it might be to remind us that they'll stomp any thing like that down. If it was Humanis First, with how carefully they screen people, I don't buy it as a fluke."

She turns to look at the door, and then shakes her head. "Lost my appetite."

"You'd be shocked at what things people will do." Delilah winces a little after she says this, as if just realizing the nature of it. When did she turn so jaded? It leaves a somewhat salty taste in her mouth, queasy and uncertain. She is not as jaded as others, but in her own case, a little is a lot. She looks somewhat guilty when Daphne kind of gets riled up, not chancing a glance over her shoulder. Or anywhere else, for that matter.

"You're welcome to come have lunch with me. I'm not in the mood for fielding clipboards today anyway." Being a pet name for people that run things- clipboards. "Sorry if I came across as too much, you guys.."

Sandi rolls her shoulders a bit, looking even more uneasy than before than she did before, looking at Daphne with a bit of surprise as she suddenly "loses her appetite". "Feh," she remarks dejectedly, kicking down at the ground in front of her. Daphne and Delilah's "sudden" cynicism has her feeling anxious, and at Delilah's question, she quickly shakes her head. "Thanks, but, fuckin'… I think I'm going to go scrounge up some bread and peanut butter instead. Maybe see if ther's any honey left, if I'm real luck.

She flexes her fingers and turns on her heels, waving. "I'll see you guys later. Be safe, alrighty?"

The platinum blonde bites her lip, looking after Sandi with some worry. "You too, Sandi. Call me if you wanna come over or something later. Amadeus bought more DVDs but they're not marked and I'm not braving that alone."

Daphne pushes her hair out of her eyes and glances from Sandi's retreating back to Delilah. "Nice kid. Naive. Nice. I feel bad that she's in here," she says finally with a sigh, then reaches to squeeze the taller woman's shoulder. "Lunch… would be great." She has an appetite, despite her words, and if Delilah's offering, it means she won't have to nab some food somewhere.

The woman strung up in the tree has her second-guessing that bad habit, anyway.

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