eve_icon.gif richard4_icon.gif

Scene Title Tangle
Synopsis Just do it.
Date April 30, 2020


The clock ticks to ten past nine in the evening, it's been a late night for Richard Ray at the office. Through the air duct a fine red mist begins to seep into the room, sprinkling down towards the floor particle by particle.

It molds itself into a single column before fashioning what appears to be a human form, with a sigh of utter elation Eve Mas shakes herself out from the fog and ruffles the back of her hair. Looking around the office with crimson eyes before they settle on the desk before her.

Her body covered in a sheer black dress that allows ghostly pale skin to be seen, she's barefoot. Hair brushed and falling past the middle of her back, Eve must have had a night on the town. Doubtful though given her new status as wanted mass murderer.

"Well, what a pickle."

By the time that crimson mist has resolved into a human form, there’s a Banshee levelled at her across the surface of Richard’s desk, the power cord for it leading down to the back of the desk itself - possibly in a drawer.

“I really need to figure out a better filter on that vent,” he observes too-casually, a tone of voice meant to mask his tension, “Too many Evolved these days can just turn into mist and roll on in without making an appointment.”

A silent moment follows, before he asks in unsure tones, “Eve? Is that you?”

"Expressive," Eve corrects, "The kids are dying for the term. Has a little more oomph wouldn't you say?" She eyes the Banshee warily, remembering what it could do to her old form. Also noting the damage it could do to her now. "Appointments? Come now, you know me. I just loveeee a good drop in."

It could have been said that alone would be enough to convince anyone that it was Eve speaking in front of them but after the events of Detroit, the former seer knows better. She gives the man a sad look and nods, "That it is Card, that it is. The one and the same. Remember the eyes are the puzzle piece, they cannot hide their nature." Her crimson eyes avoid any reflective surfaces and they haven't left Richard's since she's materialized but the way she looks at him, there's an edge of hunger. "Didn't you see my video? I've gone viral it's the most wonderful thing! My Instagram has gotten almost half a million followers!"

Maybe she has the munchies.

"You've gotten so, bright." Her gaze squints at the man. Eve trails a hand around the back of a chair facing his desk before she sits in it, perched elegantly instead of sprawled all about.

"So," A pause, "Detroit was a doozy hm?"

“Oh, I rather think they could hide their nature if they had a will to, but they don’t seem to be the sort to care for that sort of… subtlety,” says Richard, his own near-pitch black eyes holding hers for a long moment before he sets the Banshee down upon the desk. But still close at hand.

“And the kids use Slice if you’re worried about using their own terminology. I’m still a little old-fashioned.”

He leans back a little - but not too much - and arches a brow. “Just a little. I guess your ability saved you after the Kensei blade forced it out of its host?” A logical guess. She’s still red mist after all.

"Slice, so deadly. We have to be careful. Appearances matter," The world engages in a roaring laugh at that coming out of Eve's mouth. "Evolved, might scare the wee ones who are insecure enough to believe we are here to rule them. But Expressive? Well, that's artful, inspiring for all of the world, no?" Her devilish smile unveils itself, "The narrative has been shaped into a violent uproar for us long enough." Mm.

The matter of The Entity has Eve's eyes narrowed. "No," She closes her eyes, "And yes." Continuing, "I did die that day Richard, but I have changed. Grown. Same as you," Eve lifts her head as she opens her eyes to point at his chest, indicating what's inside of him.

"I need a drink," said absently raising to her feet in search of some alcohol in this space. There's a large bit of the Eve that Richard loves and hates on display here but there's a spattering of something else, her demeanor as wild as ever but there's something that haunts Eve. That's shifted her perspective on things.

"Do they tame you, or have you tamed them?" There is no mention of Nathalie Leroux, perhaps it is too painful for the woman to think of, accept that such a young and gifted soul was taken from this world. "The Old Ones are not known for their total compliance."

There is - perhaps unsurprisingly - no liquor cabinet in the office. There might be a bottle secreted away in Richard’s desk somewhere, but aside from that there’s nothing obvious for the ex-seer to get herself drunk on.

“Neither,” he replies to the latter comment, gloved fingers drumming lightly against the black surface of the desk, “You don’t *tame* them. You learn to work with them, and we’re still… getting used to one another.”

To say the least.

“What are you hoping to do here, Eve? You’re putting out videos, you’re going to end up on the most-wanted list if you don’t go and talk to them,” he points out, “Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad you’re alive, but it did some shit when it was in your body that scared the hell out of a lot of people.”

It’s a gentle way of putting ‘you killed a lot of people’.

She nods at the assessment on the Conduits, still curious of their nature and how they connect to the Mother and Father.

"I know," The death laid out by her hand even though she herself didn't enact anything weighs on her. A certain kind of guilt, "Maybe this is how you felt, learning of actions placed upon you but that was just another face. Not you," The wedge that had been driven between the two friends started with the Institute, Eve's weariness of her friend's capabilities in the right or wrong settings match Richard's on concern over Eve. "Perhaps I understand you more," Perhaps she judges less. For all that Eve planned to work, everyone needed to be together, this was another step in that direction.

Finding no alcohol she just spins and leans against the wall, swaying from side to side the back of her dress rustling, "What started as a welcome to the new blood in the family, became a proclamation of innocence, became something.. else." A slow smile as Eve ends her tangent and runs her fingers up along the wall.

"Everyone says 'turn yourself in Eve they'll let you go,' but what if they don't! Hm?" There's a look of frustration in those eyes, "I can't do what must be done behind bars, no no. We aren't safe."

She's looked tired before to Richard, even burdened by all the things she had seen but this was a new haunting. "I will speak to them," a beat passes, "But not until every broken piece is in place. Then we just need the glue."

“You want to talk about optics, Eve?”

Richard’s hands sweep to either side but generally in her direction, his brows drawing together, “You’re presenting yourself as a threat, and don’t try and tell me that the last words in your video weren’t just that. Every day you flaunt your fugitive status and brag to the social media world about it, you’re putting bullets in the hands of Pure Earth. And the kids that see you do this, they’re going to turn away from the rule of law too, because they saw you do it.”

He sounds angry as he leans forward, one hand resting on the desk, “You’re putting our children in danger, all because you have a flare for the dramatic. Have you given any thought to how all this is affecting people, or are you just feeding your own ego?”

“Do you even have a plan here, or are you just trying to act like you do?”

A dismissive wave of her hand, "I was always a threat," Her messages, her stance on the recent happenings of their nation. Though she does bark out in laughter, "Don't you pretend those racists little shits haven't been chomping at the bit, for years. If it wasn't me it'd be someone else. Perhaps Harding would be a better target, mmm?" Eve rapts her knuckles on the wall to produce a sharp knock knock.

"When has my meddling been centered around something so… trivial, small. Uninspiring." For Eve to delight in the people's attention is a different matter, that has always been so with the pale woman. "Meddling equals results. Outcomes, hopefully more bright and shiny then what we would have been served before. Nutritious." There was a time where Richard's rise to anger would result in Eve's in equal measure but instead she just smiles, smaller than before but the upturning of her lips persists.

"Where have our children ever been safe and given the space to grow? Nurture itself, our community, society. Family. The world would have us believe the recent awakening of more Expressives to be something to be scared of," Eve spits the last words out in disgust.

"The next generation will be proud, prouder than we ever could be." Swallowing, "I only hope to help them express themselves. Bigots can try and stop us, when haven't they?"

“…now? Like, right now, they’re free to be safe and have space to grow? The registry is optional, and the presidential candidate I’m leaning towards right now wants to abolish it entirely and push incentives for people who want to use their abilities commercially,” Richard observes sharply, “We have an entire governmental agency that goes after the bigots. The only way we could go more in that direction is separatism, and if you’re going full Adam Monroe on us, Eve…”

Flatly, “I should pick up this Banshee and it over with. Supremacy isn’t a good look for you.”

"And how long does that last? And if you or America fails and don't have the choice candidate put in place. Medina gets in power and then what? I sound like Adam?" The laugh is mocking and she rises to her full height, staring across at the man. "For all the love I have for my friends with the Feds, just how well are they doing against the Pure Earth threat?" Eve is cynical and her tone drips with it.

"The Plague would have seen a whole species wiped off this great green earth, genocide is so messy. So unnecessary, why is that the first thought that comes to mind? Why must we assert our dominance, our "sovereignty", why must it be the same old thing?"

Now, there is anger. "Goddess damn it there's no time for this! For our thing. All this in fighting! Only United. That's the only way." The words: sacrifice is the only way ring in Eve's mind but she ignores them. Motioning between the two, "There is no time for wars but there is also no time for regressions. Not with what's coming."

“Oh, please. We both know that if Medina got into that seat I’d be first in line to assassinate him before dinnertime,” Richard replies dismissively, one hand brushing through the air as if sweeping the concept off the table. “And you’re contradicting yourself here, Eve. Eve. Focus.”

He looks at her steadily with eyes black as night, “You’re going to cause fighting. You’re going to cause regression. You’re not acting like a unifying force right now, you’re doing the exact opposite. We have SESA, we just got SCOUT on the streets again— do you know— “

A grimace, “Edward— the Edward from Arthur’s future, the first time, from the paintings— his plan was to force acceptance of the Evolved by forcing two-hundred forty-five thousand spontaneous manifestations using Tyler’s ability. I’ve got thousands of notifications of sudden manifestations on my desk after what happened, Eve. Given that I highly suspect his plans were corrupted by Uluru, you may be playing right into her hands.”

"No, I mean you and me. I mean all of us Expressives. I can't change the mind of a bigot that wants to do me harm or you but I can appeal to a sister Expressive to not strike at another in our large family. It is the least we can do for each other."

She throws her hands up, "When has the fighting stopped Richard? The war may have ended but we haven't been safe since-" What Richard has said makes Eve stop and she tilts her head. "I'm sorry Richie Ray what?" Her eyes close, processing the information just given to her. Sacrifice is the only way. Eve looks at Richard with horror and puts her hands on her hips. "Yes I've been some of the new blood on the road." Slowly walking back to her seat and placing her hands in her lap.

"The reason I am here has to do with It," Not surprisingly.

"Something strange happened, when I died this time. I saw…" Eve's brow furrow and she rubs at her forehead. "The Entity has changed hosts, we look for the rest of the Adam horde. He's a slave again. It…" She stops and drags her hands over her face, "It will unmake us, in the future sometime. Reduce us all to our shiny stardust selves. That is the goal, to save us this world from itself, restore what was broken."

"I have seen this and to enact such a giant work… would require the ultimate sacrifice." Her eyes narrow and she shakes her head, "Richard, we can't just let them be alone out there. Waiting to be picked off OR UP. One by one. I have to protect them!" Eve looks upset and Richard is use to this Eve, purely governed by her emotions. "We have to protect them."

"This is our last stand."

“It’s— what? It’s in the Monroe hydra? Christ almighty…” Richard’s hands both come up to rub over his face, mumbling against them, “God damn, you British motherfucker, could you have screwed this up any more?”

His hands fall back to the desk, then, and he straightens, “Eve, this isn’t our— this isn’t anybody’s last stand. There’s hundreds of thousands of us, you can’t run around protecting all of them. All you’re going to do is stir things up and make them worse, you’re going to pull the Evolved apart from the rest of humanity further.”

"He just thought he was saving us all," Eve says it bitterly and raises a hand to hang limply in the air, for her to come to any sort of defense for the man was rare, "But he damned us from the very start." Her sympathy's lease is short and taunt.

At Richard's words she leans forward and nods her head. "But think of everything we have seen. All that we have went through. Both of us, shuttered through time. The Conduits and their presence in our lives since the arrival of the Vanguard on these shores, Edward's predictions and goals even resulting in multiple weakenings of the Boundary and Veil." Eve sits up straighter her expression grave, "If all of this was not a set up for the Final Wish, then what is it? You have your strings, think." Waving her hand towards his door to the hall, towards wherever his string map is in this building, she'd wager it's close.

"The Non Expressives didn't fight this before, our ancestor. Our stain on this world. The Non Expressives can't fight this. It is on us, even the weapon the Founders concocted, the one that leans on the rays of the sun, was made by us. The cards have been laid, the names called, the champions were chosen."

Eve raises a finger, "It is not our last stand. You're correct. It's theirs. The Dragon." She pauses and considers Richard strongly, "I have been on this road for so long, the end is coming I see it. But, I cannot do this alone. This cannot be done without you, without all of us together. Please understand, the fighting between both species has been at a constant. But maybe if we can stop another and Father, maybe we can really focus on the True Peace. A lasting one."

For now, the road will continue to be rocky.

“You keep saying we need to ‘come together’ and then you divide in the same sentence,” Richard replies sharply, “If anything, they’re better suited to fight this than we are - it’s always underestimated technology, and so have you. You’re right that we need to work together, but that means working together.”

“We aren’t different peoples, we’re one people, and thinking otherwise is what got us into the whole mess we call our world in the first place,” he says, leaning forward, “Eve, we can’t fight this if you turn us into enemies of the ‘non-expressives’, and everything you’ve been saying is going to make them see us as just that.”

“Please. Eve. Come in, get cleared, get your medication,” he says in the tired tones of someone who knows he’s going to be ignored, “Come back to us. You don’t have to keep being this— exaggerated parody you’ve turned into over the years.”

"What I am is a sum of otherworldly and unfortunate events. You make due and glue the pieces you can find after that sort of wreckage, Richard."

"Look at the news my friend. The war has been raging since after the last battle of the war you missed! To be proud of oneself should not equate to fear in the other, that's insecurity of the other and that is no longer our responsibility how our blood makes them feel. If we're just a little more quiet maybe they won't view us as a threat. Pfft. Those types will always fear us instead of giving equal respect. This isn't Expressives against Non. This is Expressives against the racists."

A pause, "And I've begun to have second thoughts," another pause and a thorough rolling of her eyes, "To tech, the science fairies." Eve waves her hand yeah yeah the science fairies.

"The weapon, named after the great goddess Amaterasu. It's tech." The truth of the matter was that people like Mateo, Hiro and Odessa had weakened the veil with their own abilities just as much as the various technological discoveries had. It was time to let her past with doctors and experiments and treatments go. "I don't talk about why I don't trust them, the methods, the results." Eve never had to anyone matter of fact.

Some pain you just didn't need to address again. Whatever else Eve has to say on the matter isn't known because she rubs her eyes and shrugs her shoulders, "But I'm willing to see past trauma for the greater good."

"Before I go, I need a favor." Eve leans back in the chair and frowns, the former seer was notorious for her deals and favors. The system worked well with her brain and she had a lot of fun exploring those loopholes. She didn't like owing favors to everyone though.

"I need you to trust that I mean you no harm first off, we see things different but we are not enemies. Secondly, I need you to shift." Lifting her hands in mid air, "There is something I see within you, something in my other.. form. No doubt the nearly boundless amount of life force trapped in your bones. I have a simple curiosity," If anything, Eve would rather not be doing any of this and clouding out the window towards her next appointment but her need to know persisted, and her wanting to live.

"Will you indulge me?"

“I see you’ve been talking to Robyn…” Richard breathes out a heavy sigh, shaking his head, “We’re trying to get all the pieces of Amaterasu together, but what we have is fragmentary. It still might be our best hope, though, if we can get it all put together.”

He points at her, “And I know it’s not Expressives against Non, but they’re going to /see// it that way the way you’ve been acting. Just— just think before you act, Eve.”

A sigh as he leans back, eyebrows raising a little, “Shift…? I’m not sure what you mean? I don’t have boundless life force, I can tell you that. There’s not a lot that I can even— Eve, you’re dying.” He says it as if he’d just realized it, his brow furrowing as he focuses on his unusual senses, “You feel like— someone a hundred years old just about to give up the ghost.”

"Oh no dear, I brought Grampy Wally to her. Her mother's life's work in the very least deserves to be investigated. Putting it together and using it? Why yes, a rather big chance but I'm not convinced that's the only way." There's never only one solution to a problem, never in Eve's book.

That it is Robyn's mother who the great weapon comes from might have something to do with Eve's lack of turning her nose up at the prospect. A small smile, "You have more than you know." Not even Nathalie, holding both as long as she had pierced the depths of the mysteries of the Conduits.

The woman rolls her eyes and laughs and shakes her head at Richard, "No no Card, I mean turn to your shadow I need to see-"


"Ah, sensing." A pause, she doesn't look as scared as she should be but that was Eve. "I'm aware. Working theory, I come back but there's a ticking clock." Christmas, snow. End. "Now confirmed by multiple people." A shrug of her shoulders, it is what it was but is also, why she was asking for a favor. "The running out of time and the… rather voracious hunger I can feel, well," Eve closes her eyes and rubs the inside of her arm, she wanted to say she didn't have time to explain but that had more to do that speaking it aloud more it more real.

"It's unethical to drain other living humans. When I try the animals I feel like a monster." This coming from a woman who gladly beheads chickens. "So!" Her bright smile that doesn't totally reach her crimson eyes, "I need to see if by our," Waving her hands in the air, "Energies interacting if that will jumpstart the clock! And, you seem well equipped to tell me what you feel after." Eve leans forward and her smile drops, "Will you try this for me?" Richard had nothing to fear from this experiment. If anything it was Eve who should be more afraid.

“I’m afraid I can’t exactly use the White like Abby used to,” admits Richard with a shake of his head, “I can’t use it to heal at all, actually; I have to use the Black for that. If there’s even a difference between the two anymore. I’m still… untangling that. The two intertwined has never happened before Nathalie ended up with them, so this is new ground for everyone involved.” Everyone? “And I can’t exactly ask her for tips, unfortunately.”

“But you say your ability is hungry for biological energy…? If that’s the case,” he suggests, motioning a bit with one hand, “We’ve cracked that particular problem. We’re in the process of making some new strains of algae that thrives in a protein medium that has everything necessary to emulate metabolic energy. We can manufacture what we used to call ‘life force’.”

"Goddess rest her soul," Eve bows her head for a moment for the young woman who had lost her life recently. "A truly worthy beholder of these energies. These gifts."

Richard and Raytech's new endeavors to manufacture life has Eve tilting her head and she blinks, "How very fascinating, what color do they become?" This is obviously of the most importance. "You could be a medic to a whole army Cardinal, be weary of who exactly learns of what is beneath your skin." Even though that's an obvious point to make Eve isn't above making it.

"I will attempt these lively gummies but if they do not work, we try to touch our clouds." Spread hands, "It can't hurt. If you kill me, well…" Eve waves her hand, "It would be interesting to see if this next death sticks. Hm."

At the blessing for the dead, Richard’s expression sinks further, his eyes closing for a moment. “She was more worthy than I am,” he says quietly, then draws in a slow breath, motioning with his hand vaguely through the air, “I don’t think there’s that much of a danger, I’d need a god-damn tanker truck full of the stuff to really help much. My— efficiency is terrible. Give me a few years and maybe it’ll be different, but right now, I’m fumbling in the dark. Rouen’s been helpful, when she’s around.” Whoever that is.

“I don’t want to kill you, Eve,” he says tiredly then, waving a hand vaguely, “I’m more concerned about some sort of power loop that kills both of us. We’re both vampires, for Christ’s sake, and you really want to put our abilities in contact?”

"We can always do more, to become worthy. Some of us just take longer than others Card," Eve winks and tilts her head at the name Rouen, "Who is this? A new friend to help you train in the gifts of the conduits?" A twinkle in her eyes, "Practice practice, have you tried high stakes training? Exercises where you can't afford to not control yourself?" Goddess only knows what sort of practice Eve would be indulging in were the shoe on the other foot.

At Richard's assertion of A) not wanting to kill Eve and B) the fact that they are vampires, Eve blinks and sits back, "Well gosh I don't want to kill you either duh," Aw sweet.

"Well! I'm awfully curious, aren't you?? What's the phrase… it's for science!." Eve beams but also waves her own hand and shrugs, "Maybe you're right, maybe but we're the new age vamps baby, the sun shall always know our faces." She would pout over the not touching of each other's clouds but Eve feels this has been a mostly productive and healing conversation between the two allies.

"We need the pieces of Amaterasu's weapon. Let's focus on that, hm? We'll reconvene…." Eve looks over at the clock and shrugs again, "Soon. Can't have anymore wanted criminals on the premises, and of the same bloodline even." She cackles lightly and begins to walk towards the wall, "Richard really, people will start to think you have some sort of obsession with the Mas line." Sticking her tongue out in an obvious tease.

There's always too much to discuss, with Eve and especially with these two but it's always better in their case to leave the conversation on a high note, lest the complicated nature of all of this and the steps that were taken to get here, come back to bite them in the ass. "Or maybe we have the obsession with doing bad things and being wanted, hm?"

“One of the previous hosts,” Richard replies absently to the question about Rouen, “I guess they’re all up there, in the Graveyard of the Black…”

He points at her, then, tone dry, “And no, I haven’t, because I’m not about to push myself to the point that I’m endangering the people around me. These aren’t a new toy, Eve, they’re a— they’re a weapon of mass destruction and I’m going to be careful with them.” It’s probably a good thing that she didn’t end up with them.

Leaning back in his chair, he exhales a sigh, “Eve, just— just reconsider. Turn yourself in. Make this easier on yourself, and everyone, this thing you’re doing— it’s just going to get people killed.”

"Huh… hiding. Nathalie mentioned being able but…" How could Eve be sure of how that would have taken form for previous holders of the Conduits. "Oh Richard relax nobody said toys. But do not be so cautious that you lose grip of yourself." Years ago that would have been delivered with a bit of an edge, a warning but Eve doesn't focus on the potential danger of Richard Cardinal being in possession of such gifts.

More of the same but Richard's words aren't powerless. Placing her hand against the wall, Eve looks over her shoulder and smiles sadly. "Look at the world around us Richard, they're killing us everywhere." More of the same from Eve but her tone has weaken, flashes of people she's seen killed, people she's gotten killed, people she's killed herself. The former oracle lifts and presses her shoulders back. "We'll deal with it." Her eyes glaze over a bit and she tilts her head back as her most begins to dissipate into red mist. "Like we always do,"

Eve's form wafts up towards the vents and eventually seeps all the way through, leaving not a trace of herself.

Soon she's in the sky and the woman surveys the city below her, contemplating, imagining…


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