The Broken Path


des2_icon.gif eve2_icon.gif

Scene Title The Broken Parh
Synopsis Odessa and Eve experiment with Refrain and experience side-effects.
Date March 12, 2018

Cat's Cradle

This is a terrible fucking idea. There are no two ways about it. But if Des is defined by anything, it’s a series of increasingly terrible decisions. This one involves six vials of Refrain after hours at Cat’s Cradle, locked in the Oracle Room. Des sits on a cushion with a black bag in open to her right. Eve sits in front of her, her arm resting loosely in Des’ lap.

A syringe is produced from her satchel. Des uncaps it and sticks it through the protective membrane of one of the vials containing the blue phosphorescent drug. The plunger is pulled back and the reservoir fills. The needle is recapped and the process is repeated with a second syringe. Next, she rips open an alcohol swab and rubs it over the inside of Eve’s arm. The refuse is dropped into a Tupperware container and left to sit on the floor next to her for now.

Lifting the first syringe and pulling off the cap, Dr. Desjardins lifts her brows. “All right. You first. I’ll make sure you don’t have a reaction, then I’ll do my own.”

Once upon a time, Des didn’t care if it hurt when she administered injections. These days, she’s gentler about it. There’s just the little prick and pressure against Eve’s skin as the needle slides in and Des depresses the plunger to empty the drug into the seer’s veins. Once it’s withdrawn, she recaps the needle and sets it into the plastic tub with the discarded swab.

Eve is watched with an intense curiosity. Des’ blue eyes grow wide as she holds to the other woman’s wrist and monitors her pulse. So far, so good. When she decides she’s out of the woods — or perhaps she’s just too impatient to wait it out longer — she swabs her own arm and injects herself with the other syringe. The remaining four does are left in the bag, and Des quickly disposes of her sharp in the Tupperware, closing it up before the drug can take hold of her.

“Holy shi—”

“This is a great idea! I can't believe I didn't think of it!” Eve really likes her new friend Des, hey girl hey. The sign of true friendship, doing highly addictive drugs together less than 24 hours after meeting.

The seer allows the new buddy to prep everything. She seems capable with the supplies. “Oooh!” Her light gray eyes flicker as Des injects her with the Refrain. The feeling of the drug tugging at her, pulling at her brain and washing all over her body. It's a new sensation for Eve, “Ooh Dorothy loo—”

She’s unable to finish the sentence because she's dozing off, falling off to wherever the drug takes her.

Nowhere good, ultimately.

Refrain is a psychoactive drug that stimulates the brain in the same chemical receptors that adynomine does, and in a way is it's own form of negation effect. Except that the additional chemical compounds in Refrain use that vector to send impulses into declarative memory and bring back vivid hallucinations. Side effects include vulnerability to dream-walkers, sleep walking, and death.

But very little experimentation — outside of the work of Doctor Bella Sheridan — was ever done on how Refrain interacts with specific Evolved abilities. Memory is a powerful thing, as is the ability of precognitives who possess the ability to see deeply into the paths of the future. So too is the ability of a poorly understood temporal manipulation ability that has been misfiring for several years.

When Eve Mas tries to bridge that gap — when she tries to experience the past through the high of Refrain while forcing a future vision on a temporal manipulator also experiencing vivid historic flashbacks — she's entering uncharted territory. Bella Sheridan would have advised them to have a third party present, for observation. Had they done that, they might have had an explanation for the sequence of events that came next.

Otsu, Japan


The stench of death clings to the air with a cloying quality. Flies buzz loudly and both Eve Mas and Odessa Price are suffocating under a tremendous weight pressing down atop them. Their bodies ache with deep, vivid and lancing pain. They can both taste blood, sweat, bile. But they cannot see anything, it is dark all around them and—

Odessa feels a clammy hand.

They are buried under a mound of bodies. Rotting, maggot riddled, swelteringly hot bodies dropping fluids down deep into the charnel mound they must be pressed within. It's almost impossible to breathe, and what breaths can be taken result in gagging and retching.

This is how they both die, it seems. Confused, pinned, heaped within a stack of the dead, covered in maggots.

There's a gasp as the oracle tries to take a breath but that just ends in her vomiting all over the place. Her eyes are wide as she tries to orient herself but is failing too. There are just too many bodies, “Des! Des!” They’ve entered the unknown. Eve has no idea what the fuck is going on but she wiggles as she coughs and heaves pushing through the hot bodies.

She spits out maggots and bile her light gray eyes going wild. She doesn't know where she is but she tries to steady herself. Breathes.. or tries too, she's seen crazier things on her own for sure but the sensation of not being able to breathe is almost too much for her. She shoves forward though. Clawing through the bodies and muck.

She has learned one thing in all her time in dreams and minds. You must go forward.

Once, Des read an article about climbers trapped in avalanches, and how they would be buried in the snow and unable to tell which end was up. She had serious doubts that a person wouldn’t be able to tell which way gravity was pulling them.

She no longer doubts.

Des would be screaming if she could get enough air in her lungs to produce sound. Instead, she chokes on bile. Not all of it is her own. Maggots crawl from rotted flesh and onto her own. Between that and the feeling of suffocation, panic settles in and has her scrabbling in the direction she’s currently facing. Desperately attempting to claw her way out from among the dead.

She can hear Eve call to her, but can’t tell from where.

Eve is nearly unconscious by the time she hauls herself up out of the stack of bodies, finding glimpses of daylight between gaps in mangled and dismembered human remains. The heat is suffocating, thick, and humid. Blood is thick and has a gelatin quality when she touches it, her bare hand presses into a pile of meat that was once a person’s stomach and entrails. She sinks wrist deep into the mess, and doesn't even realize she's screaming incoherently by the time she gets to the surface.

Of a field.

Littered with corpses in equally swollen piles. The bodies cross a long and rambling hill leading down into a forested valley. The bodies are riddled with arrows, and a man on horseback rides past in the full oyoroi armor of a samurai, face concealed by a scowling fanged mask. Blood covers his armor, and from his back a standard is flown on a field of red cloth. A black S-shaped symbol Eve and Odessa have seen time and again

The horseman turns, riding toward Eve’s screaming form even as Odessa presses her face up, streaked with blood and filth, in time to see the samurai’s approach. As he rides ahead, his gallop picks up speed and he reaches up to his back, withdrawing the sword from its scabbard — Hiro Nakamura’s sword — and rides precariously close to the heap of bodies.

Odessa watches as the rider careens past Eve’s flailing form and swings the sword down in a clean arc. Her head separates from her body and rolls down the pile, cutting off her scream in a gurgling report of blood from the stump where her head once was. Her flailing body falls to the side, still partway pinned into the heap.

The rider begins to turn, coming around for another pass.


Odessa reaches up to the top of the pile, pulling herself out, gasping for air. Her eyes are wide as she watches Eve’s severed head roll. She looks at the samurai - she knows his symbol. “Yamete!” she screams. “Yamete kudasai! Watashi wa Kensei no tomodachi desu!” Oh, God.Adam!

The temporal manipulator throws herself down, tumbling over the hill of bodies and to the ground, crawling over the field as low to the ground as she can. “Please, please, please.” She feels for the threads of time around her. If she can stop him and prove she’s like him—

She hazards a glance behind her and her hand finds something warm ahead. Looking back, she sees her palm has laid across Eve’s cheek. “Fu—”

Odessa can feel the threads of time around herself, but they feel covered in soap, and whenever she tries to reach for them they slip through her fingers. Her head feels foggy, weighted by something clouding her judgment.

The rider comes to a slowly galloping stop at Odessa’s scream, ending up mere feet from her. He angles his sword down, point first, and Odessa can see the bright blue eyes above the mouth-guard. She can see her own reflection in the edge of the blade. “Hizamazuku.” He demands of her, making it abundantly clear that he understood her.

But Eve is dead.

And someone else is coming. Down the hill from the direction Takezo Kensei came from is a dark-haired woman in a carnation red and bright vermillion kimono, too distant to identify. Except that her irises glow with the fiery intensity of molten steel. As she approaches, Kensei looks over to her and canters his horse back a step from Odessa.

Tatsu no mae ni hizamazuku!” Kensei shouts this time, thrusting the sword forward at Odessa.

“H- Hai.” Odessa pulls her trembling hand away from Eve’s lifeless face, a look of apology as she does so, even though there’s nothing to be done for the seeress. Slowly, she pushes up to her knees facing the samurai. “Onegaishimasu, Kensei-sama.” She plants her hands down on the grass in front of her and bends forward to a low bow.

She’s shaking all over, trying to keep the tears from coming. Trying to keep from vomiting. Covered in blood and other darker fluids from the corpses, she may never feel clean again. The smell is overwhelming.

This was a mistake in every possible way.

Kensei swings a leg off of his horse and drops down onto the ground with a clap of armor. He approaches Odessa with his sword he"Looks like we've got a good one today. I'll make this as quick as I can." With very practiced movements, Odessa slides the IV needle into the skin at the crook of Adam Monroe's arm and waits for the blood to fill into the flexible tube. They have several bags to fill today.standing over her with the edge of his sword against the back of her neck. Odessa can see the sandaled feet of that woman approaching, arms folded within the wide sleeves of her kimono, eyes burning.


Kanjoro wa watashitachi no hitoridesu ka?” Kensei asks of the approaching woman, who casts her baleful stare doJust like every other day.touch of her warm hand at the crown of Odessa’s head.

Kamisama,” is the woman’s response in a youthful voice. “Dochira mo.” There is an electric tingle burning beneath Odessa’s skin, something fiery like an infection. The womanAdam winces, but otherwise doesn't complain. He's used to it by now, she imagines. And it isn't as though any complaint is going to get him unstrapped from his seat. "Well, at least you're better at it than some of the others." His accent is crisp, so very cultured to Odessa's ears.odies are lifted into the air, floating as though they had no weight, casting shadows down around Odessa.

The woman turns, hand outstretched, and Eve’s headless corpse floats through the air toward her, now that it has been freed froWith her head tilted down and her blonde hair veiling her face, she smiles, just enjoying the sound of his voice for a moment. Her expression is passive again by the time she lifts her head. "We're going to be here a while." Sometimes he's left alone to donate and only checked in on when they need to change out the bag. Odessa never leaves him alone. Not unless she's called away. "Tell me a story, Adam."flash of light, sending Eve sprawling back onto the ground on hands and heels. She breathes in a deep, rasping breath and stares wide-eyed at the two figures. But the overlay of images and sounds and experiences makes it hard to focus. The drugs, the Refrain.

Karera wa koko kara kite inai,” the woman with glowing golden eyes states confidently. “Karera wa motonimodoru hitsuyo ga arimasu.” Raising her hand again, tThe sky is clear, cloudless and dim, a twilight or dusk that can't be determined. The horizon is cast a brilliant shade of pink and purple, and more stars than Eve has ever seen in her life shine overhead.blur of colors bending light at its edges like a prism and extending out in scintillating rings from her hand.

But it isn't dawn, or dusk, or any twilight hour she's ever experienced. The sun hangs like a dead stone overhead, jet black and ringed with brilliant gold in a fiery eclipse. Around the sun shift curtains of light more beautiful than the stars, shimmering and ephemeral waves of green that fade to blue, like the hem of a goddess' dress extending down from the firmament.agonizing pain and blinding light, accompanied by the sensations of weightlessness and falling alternating back and forth.

As Odessa and Eve fall through this light, they feel disassembled and yet at the same time whole andA child stands atop a grassy hill below the sun, no more than two years old and as naked as the day they were born, cast in a shroud of innocence in ways only children can be. The child raises a tanned arm over their head, fingers splayed, and the wind changes to swirl their dark hair about. They stare up into the eclipse, tears streaming down their cheeks.careening through the air, arms windmilling and screams involuntarily escaping their mouths.

Odessa is the first to hit the groThen, a golden light rises around the child's body like a cloud of luminescent gold filaments cast into the air. The child's skin sheds warm light, and their irises glow with brilliant gold, as though they were mirroring the eclipse.blinding pain and confusion, when Eve strikes beside her, a muffled yelp escaping her as she lands, covered in dried blood and filth, standing out against the snow.

Lips parted, the child smiles.wind is blinding and the cold sucks breath out of both women. Snow whips across the desolate landscape, partially covering the remains of a nearby building buried deep in the snow. Pieces of concrete jut up around it. A sign, buried partway in the snow, is barely legible.

Odessa can see the letters, but it's nearly impossible tThe sun explodes with light, coruscating bands of energy the color of fire wash across the darkness of the sky, turn to seething waves of blue and green, and the heavens are set ablaze.blinks again, Eve rolls onto her side in her peripheral vision, alive.

The sign, itsA voice, as if calling from deep inside a cave echoes in Eve's and Odessa’s mind.


Odessa’s breath is stolen as she reads the sign.

Ruins of the Moab Federal Penitentiary

Mount Natazhat, Alaska

March 13, 2018

At first it was darkness coupled with utter silence. Eve felt nothing, it was quick her last memory of Adam’s sword coming right towards her face.

When she snaps back to reality she is disoriented and can't really follow what’s happening but she sees them, those two figures. Adam and..? She hears that feminine tone. Before she can utter a word she is lifted and then falling through light feeling as if she was coming undone, the effect is jarring. And then she hears it, Gutes-asi. That word.. it causes her to fly back to that first dream. That one with the sky full of stars like none she had ever seen. She can't process it fully, it doesn't make sense. How..?


Her vision spinning as she is on hands and knees in the snow. Hissing from the unnatural feeling coursing through her body. Resurrected again. Covered in filth, shakily trying to stand the blistering cold making her wince. They are not dressed for this. “U-Unite.” the seeress says through her teeth as she looks over her body. A second time she's been killed and brought back to life, it's not that fun being a zombie twic because you have to go through dying. Her body gives a violent shudder as she takes in the sign with wide eyes.


Light gray eyes widen in surprise and she crawls forward to run a hand over the surface of the sign and she looks back over her shoulder at Odessa. “D-Des. DDess.” Eve inches forward to grab the other woman's arm and tries to drag her forward. “G-go in.” The seer moves forward trying to drag Odessa with her. She hadn't been here on that day in 2011, she was halfway across the country. But this place.. held so many stories. So much history.

Somehow, Des understands that Eve is translating for her a word she cannot possibly know the meaning of.


On her knees in the snow, she gags and retches until she finally empties the contents of her stomach. She heaves a few more times before she’s certain she’s done. She thought she was shaking before when she was kneeling before Adam. It’s nothing compared to the shivering from the cold that cuts to the bone.

With Eve’s assistance, Des climbs to her feet, wrapping an arm around her waist as they stagger toward the partially buried structure. If Richard had never told her about this, she would be completely at a loss for what’s happened to them.

“We- We’re in Alaska,” Des tells Eve through chattering teeth, following the wall of the building until they can find a way inside and to some shelter from this awful cold. “I- I think— I think it’s because this is where my temporal signature led us.”

This is the place where her power was the strongest, or so she reasons. What happened at the Ark in November 2011 was nothing compared to the rift that caused Moab to split apart and land somewhen else entirely. She knows she was partially responsible for the anomaly. The other two are dead.

Like they will be if they can’t get warm and soon.

“I’m so sorry.”

As they run to the only visible structure, Eve and Odessa feel the biting cold they are unprepared to face. The howling winds of Mount Natazhat bring the temperature down to a blistering -25 degrees Fahrenheit. Snow crunches underfoot, comes knee deep in places as the two women sink as they walk. It's like a nightmare where no matter how fast they run they never seem to get anywhere.

Except they are; painfully slowly.

Odessa sinks deep into the snow in one stride, Eve is there to help p"You keep a nice, good watch on him, or so help me you'll join Lieutenant Vickers on the sidewalk." Standing outside a row of research rooms in a narrow hall, Arthur Petrelli stares down an armed member of FRONTLINE, a tall and broad-shouldered young man in a black uniform. "Until you hear otherwise from me, no one is to enter this room." One finger wags in front of the security guard, as Arthur's breathing begins to steady. Slowly, he turns his focus away from the security guard down to the platinum-blonde standing a few feet away down the hall from room "2112."both staggering and unable to orient themselves. The drugs are still in effect, but they're sharing the Refrain visions.

Teeth chattering and freezing cold, Odessa and Eve feel fatigued. The trip has been exhausting, perhaps just laying down for a moment tWatching Odessa for a long, silent period of time, Arthur finds his eyes wandering to the sword sheathed on her back, dark brows furrowed together in an expression of uncertainty on seeing that familiar blade again after so long. "So…" his tone changes from chastising to conversational as he finally straightens his messed collar, "I take it that token means everything with Nakamura went smoothly?"barely keep their eyes open. The building is still a hundred feet away. Everything hurts.

They know they have to get inside, but each time the wind gusts it cuts through them likOnce he's reached where Odessa's leaning up against the wall, Arthur tucks his hands into his pockets and levels a crooked stare at her. "You didn't happen to kill two birds with one stone and find Kaito as well, did you?" the corner of Arthur's mouth tug up into a hint of a smile, "I guess that might be too much good fortune to ask for."on their knees in the snow, side by side, struggling to move.

Darkness creeps in on the edge of vision, prickling and frigid. Eve hunched forward, arms around herself and tears frozen to her chThe posture adopted by the blonde woman is casual, shifting slowly into the look of the cat that just ate the canary when Arthur Petrelli's eyes wander to her newly acquired toy. Odessa's lips twist into a wicked smile as the man speculates as to how she came by the sword of Kensei. Parting her lips to speak more of her own praises, her cockiness is dashed by the second task left uncompleted.then she isn't moving anymore, just laying in the snow.

The building is just fifty feet now, but it might as well be a mile for how helpless Odessa”The elder Nakamura evades me still," she admits. Though slowly, some of that smugness creeps back into her features. "I have to give the boy credit, though. He wouldn't give his father up. No matter what I did to him. Such loyalty. All fathers should be so lucky." It's a subtly pointed jab at Peter's recent actions, but it's played off with a roll of her shoulders and a coy glance. Did I say something?blurry darkness creeps on the edges, everything is heavy. Cold.

A smile creeps up on Arthur's face as he listens to Odessa. "Well," there's a nod of his head, "you have a point there." Turning away from the door to room 2112, Arthur slides his hands into the pockets of his slacks, relaxing his posture as he starts to walk in that suggestive manner indicative of wanting Odessa to follow him. "So, while you've been gone, quite a bit has come up. I know Peter didn't tell you everything when he spoke to you on the phone, but there's a situation that is currently in need of defusing."

Glancing side-long to the blonde, Arthur's brows furrow, "Eight people from ten years in the past have arrived here due to some temporal accident. And eight people from Moab — including one Eric Doyle — " there's a pointed nod to Odessa, "have escaped to the past as some sort of exchange. I'm putting together a team of specialists to return to the past in order to deal with the problem and help serve Pinehearst's interests there. However," Arthur's brows furrow, "it would seem Peter has decided to let his emotions rule him again, and I can't trust him to be involved with this."

Looking away from Odessa, Arthur exhales a sigh. "One of the time-travelers is Elle Bishop. She and I spoke recently, and I explained to her the experiments done to her by the Company, conveniently leaving out the fact that I signed all of those experiments into action." He smirks, pleased with himself. "I'm looking to send her back, along with a handful of others. I had planned on leaving Lieutenant Vickers in charge of the operation, but— " his eyes follow Odessa's movements, "— now that you're back, and he's… on permanent leave, I see no other qualified candidate."

Odessa inclines her head once in acknowledgement of the point granted for her verbal joust. Her hands stay at her sides, lacking the unnatural sway with her steps as she follows Arthur down the hall. Black platformed leather boots that still don't bring her to Arthur's height, stained with drops of Peter's blood, sound quietly on the floors. She patiently listens to the explanation of the incident, brows hiking up briefly in recognition of something that she doesn't explain just yet.

Instead, she chooses to divert to a relevant topic. "Eric's gone?" Something flashes in the woman's eyes. Fear perhaps, but almost blotted out entirely by a healthy dose of anger. "He escaped?" She straightens up, betraying her sudden surge of emotion in the way she stands too rigid and gathers and clutches a handful of shiny buckles and black straps from her skirt in her fist.

She doesn't expect any elaboration on the subject, however. Rather than attempt to take deep, seething breaths in direct opposition to the unyielding and adamant boning in the black corset worn under her Victorian inspired jacket, she closes her eyes for the space of five seconds and forces herself to relax. And to continue to listen, though the rhythm of her steps appears to have suddenly altered as though she quickly double-stepped without gaining any ground.

"You're trusting Elle Bishop? Once a Company bitch, always a Company bitch." Takes one to know one. "Do you think that's wi…se?" Odessa's head tilts to one side and she smiles in a decidedly wolfish manner. "Come now, Arthur." She crosses in front of the man, halting his advance so she can reach up with one hand to brush her fingers over his aging face. "Surely you knew from the beginning that I would be the only qualified candidate," she purrs. "I can keep Miss Bishop in line for you." That is the only reason he could possibly think to trust the electrokinetic at all, without doubt. "I will not let you down."

"You're one of the few people that I can hope to not let me down, Odessa." Arthur manages a modicum of a smile as he pauses by the elevator, pressing the call button as he turns to look back at the blonde. "The remaining members of the team will include Stephen Canfield, Terrence Barrington, Oliver Wilson, and Jean Moreau." All members of FRONTLINE, all loyal to Pinehearst, people Odessa has had tangential connections with in the past. "Canfield will be key to the assignment, but he won't be back from Canada until Monday morning. I'm hoping to get this trip underway on the 14th."


A single, soft beep sends Eve’s eyes open. Lights are a blur and shadows deeper. Her entire body aches, muscles tense and back stiff. Her throat is dry, a breathing tube taped under her nose and an IV in her arm, heart rate monitor on one finger. As she jolts to move, Eve discovers she is held down to the bed she woke on by padded restraints. As her eyes adjust to the light, she does not recognize the concrete-walled room she is held in.

But she isn't alone.

In a bed just ten feet away in the concrete-walled hospital room, Desdemona Desjardins lays sound asleep in an identical bed with a breathing tube taped at her nose and an IV in one arm. It's only now that Eve notices something about the other woman, the silvery streaks of gray in her hair at her temples and a few telltale creases of she at her mouth and nose that weren't there earlier. She looks, unevenly, older.

Fifteen feet away at the far end of the windowless room there is a blue-painted metal door with peeling splotches of rust around its edges.

The absence of cold is what Eve notices at first. She's no longer freezing to death and that's taken as, “Where's the hot coco?” She whispers softly to herself. There should always be hot coco after you survive a blizzard.

This reminds Eve of a few things.

Notably, her time in a asylum back in ‘06. Strapped to her bed, force fed her meds and food. She thought she would never get out of that place and for a moment the oracle believes she never did. That the last few years have all been a dream. She bucks in her bed with a soft cry and look of horror, “Ow ow ow,” She whispers over and over as she tries to look around her.

For all the things Eve has seen and encountered in her mind. Being trapped back in that ward is something that terrifies her more than anything.

The restraints are noted with raised eyebrows and she blinks before shaking her head. “This is a dream, this is a dream. This is a dream.” what did Gilly always say? ‘Take deep breaths and concentrate on home.’ So Eve does this, she concentrates on home. Thinking of her best friend, of Chicken, Red.. Lady Zeus.. she just wants to be with them. Eyes screwed up in concentration but she feels nothing. There's a sniff as she realizes there's no waking from this.

Her right leg jerks uncontrollably as the nerves take over and the wild animal that Eve is feels caged. Desdemona gets a wide eyed stare. “Oh dear.. Des.. Des..” she tries to peek down at the door with peeling blue paint. Blue. “You can't be turning into a granny on me Dorothy. I need your help.” They need each other it would seem.

Dorothy! You've gone gray! Your face is creasing!” said in a hushed whisper that echoes off the walls. Eve tries to pull against her restraints, yanking hard on them, trying to wiggle out of them. She bares her teeth as she tries to pull herself off the bed. “Dorothy,” there's a rattle from Eve’s frantic movements,


Odessa does not rouse. But at Eve’s shout, there's a heavy latching sound at the door, followed by the emergence of a tall and thin man into the room. Dark hair is swept into a neat coif, and he has a soft and gentle expression that belies regret. Henwears neither a uniform nor doctor’s scrubs, just a wrinkled button-down shirt and an old pair of khakis.

Ssh,” he raises a finger to his lips at Eve. “Please. Uh, she's really not well and needs her rest.” Whoever the stranger is, he doesn't move from the door. “You’re safe,” he explains with a more pleading tone of voice. “My name’s Bruce. Bruce Maddox, and… I have no idea who you are or, uh, if you’re dangerous.


Bruce grimaces, holding empty hands palm forward at Eve in a show that he's unarmed. “I'd be glad to take off the restraints as long as you're not going to, you know, do bad things?” There's nervous laughter and an awkward smile.

“I..Ted??” No wait, she blinks and then squints at the man. She watches a lot of Queer As Folk okay? “Sorry, you look like this guy I watch on TV.” She bites the corner of her lip. “Bruce! Hellooo.” She wiggles her fingers from their strapped down position and she tries to look relaxed. It comes off as (in her mind) she's relaxing in a spa and one of the attendants has walked in to refill her champagne glass. “I'm Eve! That’s Doro- Des!”

The singer tries to look behind the man with not much luck, “I.. we.. well I'm not going to do bad things.” She tries to lean in closer but she can't because of the straps, “I pinky promise.” There's a nervous look from the oracle at the other man. “We’re in Alaska? Moab? What..?” She flicks her gaze to Des. “What happened to her?” Eve isn't sure what to make of the current situation. But maybe this guy is a friend. A cautious, smart friend who just ties people up if he doesn't know them.


“I'm.. not sure how we got here. Des told me to take a hit of this chronic weed and next thing I know, we're in a snow tornado!” Not a pile of bodies, nooooo. Not beheaded by an ancient samurai who only six years before had resurrected her. Not brought back to life as if it were nothing but a task as simple as washing a dish for a second time. She still didn't understand what had happened. She was dead, again. Then not, again.

There's a blink and Eve looks even more scared, she thinks she's playing it good. “I need to pee.”

That part isn't part of her lie.

“Like bad.”

Bruce’s expression sinks when Eve talks, a frown creasing the corners of his mouth and bringing him a half step back and away from her. “Do you… know where you are?” Bruce’s brows furrow, and there’s a worried expression that crosses his face when he realizes he already knows the answer to his question. One hand up to his mouth, he looks down to the ground and then back up to Eve, then over to Odessa, and back again.

“She’s been here for a year,” Bruce motions to Odessa, “do… you know her?” The question, the assertion makes Eve’s head swim, stomach turn. But the click of heels behind Bruce sets both his and Eve’s spine straight. With a jerk of a look over his shoulder, Bruce hunches forward and ducks to the side as a dark-haired woman steps into the doorway in a sleek blazer and skirt far more prim and cleaned than Bruce’s ratty clothes.

Director,” Bruce looks over to Eve, his expression twisting. But then as she steps in, the woman lifts her chin up and regards Eve with an assessing stare.


“Eve Mas,” she looks to Bruce, who steps further out of the way, then back to the seer. “My name is Erica Kravid,” there’s a measured and analytical tone to her introduction. “I’m the reason you’re still alive, and I’m eminently interested in learning just how it is you wound up here. I…” she looks to Bruce one last time, and Bruce starts slinking to the door. “…was hoping you might be able to tell me what you last remember.” Kravid brings her attention back to Eve.

“Let’s start with… what year is it?” Erica raises one dark brow, slowly.

She feels a bit dizzy as he delivers that bit of news. “But I.. Des was just..” she looks again at the woman laying in the bed near her. She does look older but she's been here a year? Where is.. where is Des? Eve tries to put her hand to her forehead but the straps block her movement and she insteads slams her back onto the bed with a wide eyed look up towards the ceiling. “We were just together I-,” Then there’s another person walking in, a woman and she radiates power. This is someone that knows her worth and holds onto it. Eve is sure of it. “That is a power suit.”

She is impressed but the implications of being seen by the Director of some sort of company dawns on the older woman. Her raven hair hangs in her face as she listens to her. She knows her full name.

Craig David?

“Ok the jig is up.” Eve sighs and closes her eyes as Bruce begins to exit. “Bye Brucey, do you think they have a Snickers bar? Bring me one!” She calls out to the man before fixing Erica with a grin. “I have to thank you, I thought I was gonna turn into a popsicle out there. Evicle.” The seer looks nervous though, what year?

“You see,” Her forehead creases as she tries to deliver this right. “Dorothy and I needed to get some memories of hers,” she jerks her head in the direction of her new friend that's now old. “We took a trip down the rabbit hole. Rex said it was clean shit! The besttt, I buy my weed from him so how harmful could he be. Are you sure this isn't a dream?” She stops suddenly and looks closely at Erica. She looks pretty real. They always do to her.

“It's. I'm sorry I get distracted, heh.” She tries to take a more serious demeanor. Lynette and Gillian had coached her on how to appear presentable and sane while she was going through the process of obtaining Cat’s Cradle.

“It's the year 2018 Miss Kravid.”

Kravid’s expression is little more than the thin and flat like of her mouth below a pair of cold eyes as Eve very indirectly gets to the point. Though when she says it is 2018 one of Kravid’s brows raise slowly. The corner of her mouth crooks up, and Erica walks over to where Odessa lays in the hospital bed. Kravid checks something on her monitor, then the IV bag, then looks back to Eve.

“No,” Erica disagrees with a shake of her head as she comes around the foot of Odessa’s bed. “No, Eve. It’s 2024.” Reaching inside of her jacket, Erica withdraws a whisper-thin phone and slides it unlocked with a flick of her thumb. She turns the screen toward Eve, tapping the fingernail of her thumb where the date is displayed.

June 27th, 2024

10:21 AM

“Now,” Erica folds her phone like it was a piece of paper and tucks it back into her pocket. “We found you, alone, outside of the SEA-TAC Safe Zone dehydrated and delirious. That was April 8th. You’ve been in a coma since then, just like our other guest.” Erica motions to Odessa with one hand, then steps to the side of Eve’s bed.

“Also, you can just go, sweetie.” Erica smiles faintly. “You’ve had a catheter for a while now.”

Six years? Whoa headrush. The oracle looks confused, she sees the future. She’d say she lives right next to the river if not in it. But this, no she didn't see coming. And as any secret that Eve didn't previously see coming smacks her in the face she replies with, “Fuck. Gillian is gonna be so pissed.” A coma?

“Okay okay wait wait lady. I see the future, I don't travel.” There's a difference! And her expression is pleading with the woman but then she's showing her the date on a way, way more advanced looking phone and Eve screams inside. Her eyes bulge and she looks from Odessa to Kravid and back to Odessa. Gulping, Eve shakes her head, “How did you find her?” An innocent question. At the reminder of a catheter Eve looks a mix of relieved because she does have to pee and also worried because she's not getting out of these restraints by having to pee. “Oh you guys think of everything awesome. Can you uh..” she uses a finger to twirl around in a circle and whistles, “I can just go if you look that way.”

She risks the chance to ask, “Are the straps necessary?” She jiggles the straps with a long look at the woman’s back and eyebrow raised, “I promise to behave.” She does. If only to not he strapped to a bed anymore like in the hospital. “I've been in a hospital before, long long time ago. I.. the straps unnerve me ma’m.” Be polite.

“You do see the future,” Erica affirms, head tilting to the side. “And I appreciate that, immensely.” The meaning behind that feels vague, but something about it twists a knot in the pit of Eve’s stomach. “We rescued Odessa from a DHS holding facility during thStepping back, Eve flutters her eyes open and looks at the tall canvas on the easel. The shades of blue and purple pop against a field of black, where a full moon turns clouds silvery. The painting depicts a field of bodies, spread out across the ground, many in business suits and others in lab coats streaked with blood. Atop the heap of bodies stands a lean, shaggy dog with a long face and muzzle smeared with blood.ble to make certain she wasn’t a danger to herself or others.”

Whatever it was Kravid said was lost behind the haze of a memory, but one unfamiliar to Eve. It was the haze of Refrain, but if she had been in a coma for months the drugs should be out of her system, assuming she was somehow transported to the year 2024. But now, Eve realizes, the drugs never ran their course. ”What does it mean?” A voice behind Eve asks, and as the seer turns, Erica Kravid is approaching the painting with eyes narrowed. Behind her, the eggshell white walls of her Arcology suite contrast against the navy blue of the woman’s suit. Eve turns back to the painting, one brow raised as if wondering that same thing herself.

“I can’t let you go,” Kravid explains with a frown. “After what you did at the Arcology all those years ago, it’s clear you’re… unstable.” Suddenly, Eve can remember her, even if in just the vaguest of details. Erica Kravid was someone from the Institute and”It looks to me,” Eve says with a Cheshire smile, pointing to the wolf. “Like this is a hungry puppy,” and then down, down she points, to where Erica Kravid herself is painted with her throat torn out by the hound. “And you’ve been very naughty.” Erica’s eyes widen, a hand moves reflexively to her throat, and she backs away from Eve’s painting of the dog.tay here indefinitely, until we can get you fully integrated into the Structure.”

Kravid raises one brow, managing a faint smile. “Don’t worry, Eve. Eventually, you’ll grow to like it here.” Then, lips downturning into a frown Kravid adds, “or you won’t. I really don’t care which.

…fuck. The jig is up. The swirl of emotions that she feels at the repressed memories from her time in the Institute makes her feel ill but she remembers something of that time and it makes her excited, pleased. She knew she’d find them one day. They belonged with her, her memories. And that dog… and the bodies. The Hounds. The thought makes her stiffen and her eyes narrow as she stares at Kravid and then the wall ahead of her. She's helped them, the Institute, in ways she never could have comprehended.


Eve gives Erica a stare. “I told Simon I wanted my paintings back. My work.” The seer is annoyed as she remembers back to that time. “There were a lot of booms, blood. ROBOBEARS trying to kill my friends and then I got stuck with fucking Debbie. I cannot be blamed for having a little freak out Erica. Have you met Debbie? She's not fun.” The way she says Erica’s name, as if she's remembered her. Remembers this woman and at least one of their interactions.

“What structure I don't hear any construction.”

The seer looks again confused but she shakes her head, “Don't get all ‘It puts the lotion on’ on me. I've helped you before. Even though you were naughty.” Light gray eyes study the woman with a wry grin. “There aren't any booms,” Eve cranes her neck out as if she's trying to listen, “No blood,” that's visible, “And I fucking hope no Debbie. So.. there's nothing to trigger me. Just keep me fed. You didn't feed the puppy after all. You must have plenty of food.” There are rules to handling Eve, like a gremlin. And Erica would remember this. “Maybe a fed and happy Eve would be a happy all seeing Eve, rainbows for everyone. No bodies.” With the way she sees though, probably bodies still.

She understands that Erica will do what she will, Powersuits are like that. But doesn't mean they can't be friendly. Though she's starting to really get that she might not be able to get out of here so simply. Maybe.. a walk. She’ll inch the conversation towards that.

“Is she coming to the Structure with me?” If she can stay around Odessa maybe she can wake her up. She wonders if she can get some smelling salts, that has to work. Or maybe a shot of adrenaline! No no that wouldn't work. Maybe she could find a telepath! She can't do any of that while being chained to a bed.

Kravid pauses at the door, looks back to Eve, then to Odessa. There’s a furrow of her brows and a slow shake of her head. Then, reaching to the door handle, Director Kravid just smiles faintly. “Eve, you mad, mad woman. I do wonder what would have happened to you if you had stayed at the Institute, instead of being let loose into the wild. But, I wasn’t running the show then.” Kravid steps out into the hall, implication set. The Institute — or some fraction of it — is still operating, and Erica Kravid is running the show.

“Goodbye, Eve. I’ll send one of the Doctors to prep you for installation.” When Kravid swings the door shut, it closes with a resounding clang. The sound might as well be a gunshot for all that is rockets through Eve’s mind. The world, likewise, goes as black as she would expect if she were shot in the head.

And just as silent.

The Cat’s Cradle

March 14th, 2018

Eve awakens with a scream, jolting into an upright position exactly where she last remembered laying down before the delusion took her. For a moment there’s relief, it was all a dream like the ending of Wizard of Oz. Looking to her right, she finds Odessa laying on her side next to her, except that’s when things start to take a turn toward the darker, weirder, Fairuza Balk Return to Oz.

Odessa is covered in dried blood, gray filth, and has two dried lines of blood running out of her nose. There’s a slight wisp of gray in her hair and a few creases at the corners of her eyes. She’s not as old looking as she was in the hospital bed, but it looks like she’s aged somehow. Looking down at her own hands, Eve sees that she too is smeared and smudged with blood and filth, trembling uncontrollably.

What the fuck just happened?

The world may never know.


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