The End Of Your Life


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Also Featuring:

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Scene Title The End of Your Life
Synopsis Magnes Varlane seeks out Kimiko Nakamura.
Date May 8, 2019

It's a day like any other, sunny, a nice chill for this time of year, and probably as uneventful as it can be for a ruined dystopia where everyone has super powers.

Magnes is dressed in his prime long coat outfit today, it's chilly enough, with his seamless black boots from another world. He walks up to the Yamagato checkpoint, a checkpoint he's yet to try to get beyond. But he knows Kimiko is here now, so surely it should work out fine.

"Hey!" he says to a guard, pulling out his wallet to show his ID. "I'm here to see Kimiko Nakamura."

The guard just sort of stares at him, then grabs his walkie talkie and turns around to whisper. "That guy from months ago is back… yeah, that guy. Says he's here to see Kimiko Nakamura this time."

He squints at the ID, then motions. "Come on in."

Magnes, of course, didn't hear any of that, so he heads in just in time for a few other guards to walk up. "Follow us."

None of this seems abnormal for meeting the CEO of a company, but where they actually lead him is to a holding area. "Okay, Magnes Varlane. We need you to stay here for a few minutes."

"Sure thing!" Magnes agrees, sitting in a chair at a table in a rather plain room. He's not even sure what building he's in, this place is weird. He at least doesn't feel like he's being kidnapped, so that's something.

The guards, meanwhile, start communicating the fact that they have Magnes Varlane, who was previously here allegedly harassing a resident. Of course Elaine communicated that it was fine and wasn't anything bad, security wasn't so keen to believe that. And now that he's here to see Kimiko Nakamura, they fully intend to hold him until they get word from a higher up on what exactly to do.

Letting him go just seems like he'll come back, after all.

Like a bad penny.

Yamagato Building

Yamagato Park, NYC Safe Zone

June 8th


It’s a twenty-seven minute wait in the spacious waiting room. Twenty-seven minutes of relative silence with a panoramic, if silent, view of Yamagato Park out the full wall of windows at Magnes’ right. Cars zip through busy traffic, clouds track across the mostly cloudy skies, and toward the end of the wait it starts lightly raining. Being up here reminds Magnes of the view of Manhattan from Columbia University’s science lab in the timeline ruled by Pinehearst. He remembers conversations with Rich Schwenkman, with Mortimer Ray, with a litany of other lab technicians and assistants.


This being, this shape, this Entity erupts with a corona of concussive force that snakes and winds its way through the room. Two SESA scientists struck by the blast explode into ashen cinders and scatter across the floor, another hit by the blast simply explodes in a shower of gore and bones, spraying down along the wall. The Entity staggers forward, struggling, like a car gone out of control down a freeway.


Elaine turns to look up at it, mouth opening to say something to Magnes, and a shockwave of energy hits her like a wall and she explodes in a shower of green-blue light leaving no trace that she was ever there.


The sound of someone else’s voice shakes Magnes back from a post-traumatic stress flashback. Lingering in the doorway is a tall and thin man in a sleek black suit who looks sculpted from marble and dusted with a beard. Eizen Erazawa tilts his head to the side, regarding Magnes with dark eyes beneath a furrowed brow. “President Nakamura will see you now.”

"It's so weird, seeing her business. It's like she's a queen or something." Magnes says as he stands up, following Eizen. "Magnes J. Varlane… well, you know my name, obviously." He offers a hand to the man. "Where's Kimiko? I guess it's hard to just go knock on her door or something."

Putting Elaine out of his head is always difficult. Things have gotten easier, but his theory has made everything feel fresh again. He's not even sure what to do if it turns out to be true.

Or if it turns out to be false.

“Very hard,” Eizen comments, stepping out into the hall and walking to a nearby elevator just a short distance down. “Ms. Nakamura is a very busy woman, but she has not forgotten what you tried to do for her and her family all those years ago, even if the outcome was… unavoidable.” Eizen calls the elevator with a button tap, then allows Magnes in first before he follows him inside. As the doors close, Eizen produces a bracelet from the pocket of his suit jacket, a thick metal cuff with an ovular blue light by a small serial number.

“If you could put this on either of your wrists, please. Then hold down the blue light until it turns green.” Eizen offers the bracelet out to Magnes. “It is a security pass and prevents the building’s automated defenses on the executive level from targeting you. It only functions within a 30-foot proximity of me, so I would recommend not straying far until we have cleared you to leave.”

The inner doors shut next and with a smooth and swift motion the elevator begins moving up.

Magnes stares at the bracelet, increasingly surprised by the disparity between technology in and out of Yamagato. He slips it on, following the given instructions while continuing to admire the tech. "Security here is pretty efficient. Considering all the times I've gotten kidnapped, I'm not even sure how I'd break out of here."

"And that's pretty crazy, I always think of it as Kimiko teaching me how to fight. Without her I'd be dead by now. She taught me how to be tough, she can probably take most people in a one on one match." He steps back, leaning against the wall of the elevator. "I've never liked elevators, they feel weird. Must be a gravity thing."

"So uh, what about Hiro? No one's ever told me what he's up to." he suddenly remembers, figuring this guy must be in the know.

“We don’t have holding cells,” is Eizen’s quick and precise response. “Security threats are either handed over to Safe Zone law enforcement, or experience lethal force.” His dark eyes flick over to Magnes, then back to the count of floors slowly escalating. Eizen had considered ignoring the question of Hiro, but after a thoughtful look at Magnes he reconsiders.

“Ms. Nakamura’s brother died nearly eight years ago,” is Eizen’s response. “Saving the world, is how she likes to put it. I don’t know the specifics, and it is a very painful topic for Ms. Nakamura, so I would politely suggest that you avoid it for this meeting.” The elevator slows, and with a soft and musical chime the doors open to… an aesthetic not like anything else in the building.

Nearly all of Yamagato Industries designs up until this year have featured organic shapes, smooth curves, and prominent white colorations. The eco fleet vehicles premiered at the World’s Fair are more retro, boxy things harkening back to classic 1980s vehicle designs. But this, the executive level of the Yamagato Building, is something else entirely.

The executive levels are coded with black and gold aesthetics. The floors are lined with black marble with gold veins, the walls are papered with a matte floral print with a hush of gold leaf antiqued over its textured surface. Frosted glass globes that shed warm light are suspended from the ceiling by black cords, and the mountain symbol of the Yamagato corporation is stamped above each tall doorway.

“This way,” Eizen says, stepping out into the hall.

"Wow this place really is like a castle. It makes Pinehearst look outdated… well I guess it is outdated." Magnes shrugs, casually reaching out with his ability as he just so sort of tends to on instinct at times. A way of touching things with a different sense, feeling the weights and such. The general vastness of the things around him.

"Eight years ago… I can't believe Hiro was one of the people lost back then, of all people." It's difficult, but he knew there would be losses when they came back. What's surprising is who is lost.

"So when you say experienced lethal force, you mean, like, what, corporate Power Rangers?" he wonders, because one has to wonder.

“More sophisticated,” Eizen says with a look over to Magnes, “think more… lasers.” There’s a playful crook of one corner of Eizen’s mouth as he flicks a look over to Magnes, then continues down the hallway. The sound of their footfalls echo off of the marble tile until they reach a diamond-shaped lobby that must be near one of the building’s corners.

Here, a slim Korean woman in a black suit behind a glass reception desk nods on Eizen’s approach and in a hushed tone calls out, “Ohayogozaimasu. Erizawa-san.” Eizen doesn’t pause to talk to her, just nods at Kimiko’s executive assistant before approaching the black double doors past her desk. They silently swing open of their own accord, revealing an expansive office beyond that weirdly reminds Magnes of a slightly less barren version of Gendou Ikari’s NERV office from Neon Genesis: Evangelion.

The Presidential office clearly rests in the building’s southwest corner, with one corner nothing but gradually sloping walls of glass clearly viewing the ocean and the dimly lit ruin of Liberty Island. The office is cathedralesque in height, with tapered black columns trimmed in gold rising to the ceiling. Ferns and other potted plants are spaced around the room along with six foot high decorative trees.

A single black slab desk rests beside the windows, behind which stands the slim silhouette of Kimiko Nakamura dressed in a sleek black suit whose sleeves split at the elbow and fall like petals around her forearms, showing off the bare metal aesthetic of her cybernetic arm. There is an immediate familiarity in that steely expression when Magnes sees it, and Eizen lingers in the open doorway, at least for now.

“Magnes?” Kimiko asks, as if uncertain. She has barely changed — save for the arm — but Magnes is like a different man.

"Hey, wow you're an awesome cyborg now." Magnes says before he flattens both arms to his sides, then bows. "Sensei. I'm alive. And by the way you should get your phone from ten years ago shut off, Adam Monroe has it for some reason."

Standing up straight, he looks around the office, his ability not even entirely stretching far enough to take in its full expanse in any meaningful way. Some things have a habit of being too large to feel and too small to have a notable gravitational pull to feel beyond his range.

"I've been trying to track you down for a while, so it's pretty convenient that you're in New York again." He looks around again, because for some reason this place just sort of throws him off a bit.

Being perfectly honest, it reminds him of the fight with Kazimir. "I wanted to catch up, I've been gone for a while, and also I could use a job." he says like a long lost couch surfing friend, probably a bit differently from Eizen is used to people talking to Kimiko Nakamura.

“Go,” is what Kimiko says. Not to Magnes, but to Eizen. The tall security officer offers a look over at Magnes, then a wordless flick of his attentive stare to Kimiko, then nods and steps out of the office, shutting the doors behind him as he does. Whatever humor or levity was in Kimiko’s face, whatever nostalgia there was, has rapidly drained away.

“Adam Monroe has taken many things,” Kimiko says with a sharpness to her voice that Magnes remembers from a decade ago when Kaito was killed. “My father, my arm, my leg, my husband.” He jaw sets and she sits down in the high-backed chair behind the desk, briefly looking down and away to the floor before looking back up to Magnes. She does not regard the phone among the lost.

“You have missed a great many things while you were on the other side of the mirror,” is a knowing comment from Kimiko. But she does not say more, does not comment on Magnes’ request about employment. She knows Magnes — or did. She knows he’s a talker, so as she folds her hands together atop her desk she gives him that.

Room to talk.

"I'd ask how you know, but you do live in a large anime castle, so I guess you probably know a lot." Magnes doesn't question it, it just makes sense.

He walks up to her desk and stares down at it. There's something about the quality of everything, he can't help but stare at things. "Adam tried to steal my brain, I imagine he's probably trying to find my last living clone if he knows he's alive, knowing that he'd have trouble getting me."

"Your father, at least a version of your father, is one of the reasons I was able to come back." But there's something else on his mind, something he can't outright ask. How does he address this? What does he do?

"I trust you, I trust your family. I want my daughter, Addie, to grow up here, somewhere safe. And I want to help protect this place for her and you." He looks around again, as if he's about to say something else. Who knows if what he says next is what gave him pause. "Do you have any kids now?"

Kimiko’s pupils dilate and then widen, then dilate again, like a camera coming into focus on a long-angle shot. “No,” is her quick, knife-like lie. “I do not have any children.” She is well aware that a secret is easier to keep the less people know it. Whether they have good intentions or not.

“Adam Monroe wants your mind because you are a proof of concept for a project called Heisenberg, of which he is a recipient of. There is more than one Adam Monroe now, spread out across numerous cloned bodies, each with different abilities, all interlinked in a quantum consciousness. A process perfected through you.” Kimiko’s brows pinch together for a moment, and only just that. Mentions of trust and family slip past her line droplets of distant rai , regarded but not reflected on. Magnes has seen that posture before, that expression. Kaito.

“Your daughter is in the hands of Eileen Ruskin,” is a piece of information few people are aware of, and yet Kimiko seems unsurprised by it. “An Eileen Ruskin,” is the only clarification she gives. “Somewhere in the New Jersey Pine Barrens. She is healthy, happy, and wholly unaware of you except… perhaps in memory?” Of that she seems uncertain.

“When will you be taking her back?” Is Kimiko’s question back to Magnes. Not if, not any other question. Just when.

"When I can do it without bloodshed, which puts a lot of power in Eileen's favor. I'm not in a hurry to see another Eileen die, or to put my daughter in danger. If I rush, someone will die, and I don't want that." Magnes reaches up to rub behind his ear, because all of that suddenly makes far too much sense.

"That's… why the clones kept having different abilities. I've been in the head of a clone before, I guess we've been in each other's heads. But I don't know where the remaining clone is, I don't really know how to like… activate the quantum consciousness thing to see if he's okay or where he is."

But there's still a nagging thought, a thought far smaller in the grand scheme of the rest of the world, but one that needs to be said. The way she talks, the way she knows so much. He's seen this a few times, but with her it's different… he just can't put his finger on how or why. "What happened to the Elaine Darrow who came to this world with me?"

Kimiko’s eyes narrow. “I don't know,” is her simple, quick answer. It's one she moves past quickly to topics she is both more comfortable with and also more knowledgeable about. But it does start with Elaine. “But, I believe between Richard Ray and his circle of spies you might be able to find out? But that isn't something I have any insight to offer for you, other than to cherish what you have, not obsess over what you…”

Kimiko stops, looks troubled, and looks down at her muted reflection in the desk. She closes her eyes, shakes her head, then blinks a look back to Magnes. “Never mind that. Follow your heart,” is Kimiko’s less hypocritical advice.

Clearing her throat, Kimiko waves one hand over her desk and conjures a three-dimensional image of a series of blue concentric rings that looks somewhat like an eye. “Jiba, transfer our files on Project Heisenberg to an external device and have security leave it at the front desk for Magnes when he departs.”

The hologram flickers and dips into something like a nod, then in a synthetic voice from the desk replies, «Yes, Ms. Nakamura. Transferring files now.»

Kimiko looks up from the desk and folds her hands again. “Jibakurei is a… digital assistant of Yamagato. Say hello to Mr. Varlane.”

The eye pivots to Magnes. «Hello, Mr. Varlane! It is a pleasure to make your acquaintance.»

"Holy shit you have a Jarvis?" Magnes is distracted from the disappointing news by the fact that things got shockingly more futuristic than he was expecting. But he shakes his head. "Hello, Jibakurei."

He stares at Kimiko, because Magnes is a person who has difficulty accepting when one of his long shots might be wrong.

All things considered, including news, information, advice, and a Jarvis, he can't let it go. "So you're saying that Elaine from another world didn't jump into your body and start living in your brain?"

Jiba tilts in the way a dog might when it hears a weird noise, then pivots to “face” Kimiko who—

is laughing

Cybernetic hand covering her mouth, Kimiko exhales a few whooping laughs that actually bring tears to her eyes. He struggles to get herself under control, breathing in and out quickly, wiping at her eyes, exhaling little exasperated gasps. “Magnes J. Varlane,” she says through the laughter, exhaling a calming breath afterward. “Deep down you're still you, aren't you?”

Then, in case it isn't abundantly clear she shakes her head. “I'm sorry, Magnes, but I'm— absolutely not Elaine. Of any dimension. I know that would have been something. But it isn't.”

"I guess it was a long shot… Anything is possible, but it's difficult to feel closure when I didn't actually see her die. She just… turned into light, in a way that other people came back from. But at the same time, I feel a deep sense of grief, and I just teeter in between trying to move on and suddenly having hope." Magnes walks over to Kimiko now, then reaches out, moving in for a hug.

"I want to join Yamagato to build my family here, and you're a part of that family to me. I want to make up for what I did in Japan when I was younger, by giving back and protecting what Japan has here." he explains himself properly now, since seemingly all of their business is out of the way.

Taking a deep breath, Kimiko nods and absently threads a lock of hair behind one ear with her metallic hand. “Magnes, I will be forward with you.” She says, looking up from the desk to him, as if she knew any other way to be. “What you did to try and save my family all those years ago was admirable, and the Nakamuras — for as long as we exist — will always be in your debt for that. But,” and she looks away, brows furrowed, “I can't hire you.”

When Kimiko looks back to Magnes there's no longer that steely facade she'd kept up on his entrance. There is a troubled look in her eyes. “Magnes, what happened in Shibuya changed Japan forever. It gave the government justification to oppress our kind for nearly a decade until the current Prime Minister began enacting changes. But it's still… it is a point of great contention. There are those, here, employees of Yamagato Industries who would never forgive you for your hand in that, or me for allowing you a job.”

Kimiko closes her eyes and shakes her head. “I know why you fought, and I have not once ever blamed you. But my actions are judged by many, now. That said…” her dark eyes shift to the side, briefly looking at Jiba, then back to Magnes. “Unofficially I could hire you to gather information for me, about Adam. You hear things, things people keep secret, and I could use that. I know that it isn't what you hoped for…”

“The only…” Kimiko purses her lips. “The only other option I have would be to help you get a job with one of the US construction companies that we contract with in the Safe Zone. Then, perhaps, you could literally build something for you and your daughter.”

Magnes lowers his arms, considering her offer. "Aside from Richard, maybe moreso than Richard, you're probably the only person with the resources I'm told Adam has right now. I can help, we can help each other. I want to make up for what I did, I don't know how to do that, but I want to make up for it. So… if you can, it would be cool if you could think of a way I could maybe pay some sort of penance to the Japanese people. Doesn't have to be right away, just give it some thought."

"Anyway…" He sighs, shrugging. "I can do this. If it brings us closer to stopping Adam, I can do it. There's a few things I'd like to ask you for, some things that I need personally, others that I think will give us a leg up on Adam."

Reaching up, he taps the side of his head. "I need scientists to do experiments on me. I've worked on science teams before, technically I am a scientist, but the things I know are a bit too dangerous for this world. What I'd like to do, though, is have a team of trusted scientists figure out this quantum consciousness thing." He sounds very serious, staring at her as if this is one of those plans he's determined to go through. "If we can figure out how it works, we can figure out how to break it, or maybe how to use it against Adam, so that we don't have to search all over the world for tons of him."

Kimiko’s eyes narrow for a moment, considering Magnes with a discerning eye. She flattens her hands against her desk, exhaling a small sigh. “One step at a time,” is how she approaches that topic. “But I may know of someone who has the correct skill set to study your mind. But,” she furrows her brows, “later. I will need time to make preparations for something like that, and you will need time to consider the risks.” She looks down at the desk. “After all, you are a father now.”

But Kimiko leans back, away from the topic, away from Magnes, away from everything it feels like. “For now, I will see what I can do about getting you gainful employment with a construction company. Your ability would be a benefit to the teams doing reconstruction, lifting heavy objects. You'd get to work with our tetsujin construction robots as well.” Kimiko looks down to her hand, to the wedding band she wears on her cybernetic hand.

“For now, go reconnect with your loved ones. Enjoy the world as it is.” Kimiko says, slowly standing up from her desk. “It may not be there, or be the world you recognize, when we are done with Adam.”

"Not-evil robots would be great. Especially ones that aren't giant and fly around with tentacles and lasers." Magnes walks over again, reaching out, offering a hug again. "But remember that you don't have to be a CEO at all times. We can have a small dinner party when I have my life together, I'm sure my friends would love to meet you. You're not alone, I care about you, and this isn't the end of your life."

He motions his head for her to come over. "Come on, we're hugging, you're in this dark and dreary office and millions of people are probably afraid of you because you became corporate royalty, so it's time for a hug."

Kimiko’s lips press into a thin line, dark eyes narrowing at Magnes as she scans him up and down. But then, Kimiko’s cheeks puff out and she exhales a sigh so deep it feels as though it might come from the bottom of a cave at the center of the Earth. Tentacled laser-robots are left aside, you have to separate the wheat from the chaff when Magnes is talking, and right now something else has her attention.

This isn’t the end of your life.


Kimiko begrudgingly says, stepping over and with a sudden urgency and intensity throws her arms around the one person she has left in this world who wasn’t brought by money and yet risked everything to try and fight for her. For just a moment, Kimiko Nakamura is ten years younger. For just a moment, Kaito is still alive. For just a moment, she imagines Hiro is nearby.

For just a moment, she is herself.

“But if you tell anyone it will be the end of yours.”

May she never change.

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