The Makings Of Absolute Disaster


colette_icon.gif hana_icon.gif

Scene Title The Makings Of Absolute Disaster
Synopsis When Colette skids off the road on her way out of Staten Island, she finds herself rescued by an unlikely woman…
Date April 13, 2010

Northern Staten Island

The northern half of Staten Island is as close to lawless territory as any one person can get. No police, no infrastructure, no public works; the measure of the law is determined by the strong and the cunning, and those that fall beyond either end of that spectrum often rely on others to fend for them when they cannot for themselves. Beneath the slate gray sky that is growing increasingly darker in the evening hours, one young girl who lands just shy of the cunning side of the spectrum has found herself in a predicament.

The lack of infrastructure on Staten Island means that most roads by now have been completely buried under a mountain of snow often times twice her height and at the best still waist deep. Since the last major blizzard, roads to and from the Rookery have become more and more maintained by private residents owning plow trucks, creating singular and narrow roads slicked with ice and compacted snow by which the residents of Staten Island's lawless division commute.

Between Port Ivory's western shoreline and the derelict neon lights of the Rookery lies a vast stretch of abandoned residential buildings, industrial structures and overpasses that once served as a transit hub through Staten Island. Now only a single lane for traffic is plowed along what was once an east-west interstate connecting New Jersey and New York. Snow has swallowed up the concrete barricades that divided the freeway's lanes and ice has slicked every bit of crackled and buckled pavement three years untended by public works.

A litany of curses more fit for a sailor to spit out on a night of shameless drinking spills from Colette Nichols' lips. Laying on her back in the middle of the street in three inches of fresh snow that has dangerously powdered over the ice and made roads more like skating rinks, she's clearly injured. It wasn't so much the fall from her dirt bike that hurt the young teen, but the way she landed on an already wounded side riddled with stitches.

Gloved hands claw at the ground as she pushes herself up to her feet, hands pawing at the chalk white helmet she wears, struggling to pull it up and off of her head before dropping it down into the snow. Dark locks of hair are plastered to her forehead, partly hiding a reddened gash along her brow dashed across with black threading, another still healing wound. Some thirty feet ahead of Colette a dirt bike rests buried halfway in a snowbank, back tire still spinning from where she skidded out of control, the swerving snake-like lines of her tires weaving out of control mark the road behind her, already filling with snow.

Frustration makes Colette's screaming curses louder than even the puttering roar of her dirtbike was, and when she pulls herself up to her knees, one of her hands moves to her waist, eyes wrench shut and a sharp, hissing breath escapes from finally quieted lips. If common sense won't shut her up, shooting pain at least will.

Fortunately for her, Colette has no idea that the graffiti marked and crumbling old warehouse looming over the freeway like a stern parent over a misbehaved child is more than just derelict infrastructure of a lawless city; it's something almost like a rest stop.

Mind you, anyone who called this snow-buried locale a rest stop to Hana's face — or even in her hearing — would receive a less than gracious response.

The abandoned warehouse doesn't look like much beneath its covering of snow, any remnant of landscaping long since dead for lack of sunlight. The building seems equally defunct, windows frosted over, rooftop laden with snow that absent internal heating has failed to melt. It'd take a keen, suspicious eye to find the places that are cleared, the attention to detail reserved for maintaining lines of sight… and the views of camera lenses.

Fortunately for Colette, Hana is presently here. Not just here, but here — the soft crunch of powdered snow beneath her weight only becoming audible as pain rebukes the girl into silence. Hana has no compunctions about walking down the road to approach Colette; nor inhibitions against placing a firm restraining grip on her shoulder, the better to keep her from moving further.

"Don't do more damage than you've already done," the Israeli woman states, quietly but not softly; not gently.

Tiny, blossoming motes of light dimmer than a candle flicker like spots of dazed vision around Colette's body at the hand on her shoulder from behind. Hana can feel the tension in the young girl's shoulder beneath the thick fabric of her winter jacket along with a tremble that isn't quite reserved only for fighting off the cold. Colette doesn't need ot turn to see Hana, or at least not make out the general shape of her body, the way light reflects off of her is enough to the teen's dilated pupils to pick up.

"I'm— sorry." The hitch in Colette's voice is an obviously fearful one, if she'd know anywhere out this far north was safe, it isn't showing. All the tales of the Rookery she's been told since before even joining the Ferrymen were nothing but urban legends of kidnappings and serial killers and the occasional bitter reality of a monster that eats children. She's seen that one, at least, and knows this voice couldn't ever belong to it.

Very slowly lifting her hands up to either side of her head when those lights around her fade, Colette offers an askance look to the olive-drab courier bag strapped down to the back of her bike and the keys containing her LED flashlight buried somewhere in the snow where they're stuck into the ignition. She's wholly unarmed, especially thanks to the clouded skies.

"I— I don't have a whole lot've money. I— just— just take whatever you want it— it's in my bag." Colette nods her head over to the bike, still not making an attempt to turn around. She's misjudged the Israeli and misjudged what might have been concern for a threat; The ringing in her ears is only half to blame.


The single word is a blunt dismissal of Colette's fear, and of the idea that she might have anything the woman standing beside her wants. It is also, in its way, a dismissal of threat; although Hana does nonthreatening about as well as any lioness: not very. Her grip doesn't relent, although it's only firm enough to hold, not to hurt. "You're breathing easy, at least. Did you pull any of those stitches?"

The tilt of Hana's head is more sensed than seen, as her dark eyes consider the girl kneeling in the snow. "Will you stay put if I let go?" she asks brusquely, tone implying that there is definitely a wrong answer to the question — and Colette had better not give it.

Nodding her head once in response, sharply, Colette angles up her eyes and tilts her head to the side after the nod to get a better look at the woman addressing her. Dark brows crease together and look at Hana with marked confusion, but the lack of a visible firearm and also knowledge about her injuries seems to ease the girl's mind a bit. Admittedly any number of mind-reading tricks could have come into play here, but that amount of cleverness is just too far over the line away from Colette's quick-witted acumen.

"I uh…" Colette answers before she thinks, which results in her trailing off, wincing as she shifts slightly in the snow, reaching down to pull off one of her gloved hands and bring her fingers up inside of her jacket. Brows crease briefly and when Colette pulls her hand away there's no blood on her fingertips. "N— No I think— I think I'm okay." Green eyes divert down to her helmet, then slowly up towards Hana with a puzzled expression.

"Do… Do you work for Raith too?" Colette's met enough unexpected members of the Remnant in the last three days to presume nothing is a coincidence. "I um— so you're like…" swallowing audibly, Colette glances left and right down the empty road, then back up to Hana. "It's kind've cold down here, actually."

Hana takes the stammered reply as an indication that Colette will stay put, or at least that she can move on to other concerns. The lack of blood on the girl's testing hand also moves one potential complication off Hana's mental radar. She steps around Colette, her movements graceful and focused in their energy — and after a great deal of re-conditioning, the woman can put more normal force into them. This also means she can haul the toppled dirtbike out of its frozen resting place, with some effort.

"Work for Raith?" The weight of disdainful scorn the former Mossad can put into those three words… well, her voice was not impaired by confinement and coma, or the need for convalescence. They come between exertions, forced pause in speech as Hana wrenches the dirtbike back into proper orientation, kicking the supporting stand down with practiced familiarity. "I don't work for anyone," she informs the girl, lips thinning with the sour sentiments of old memories. It's not that she has anything against Raith… "Not any more."

One dark brow arches at Colette's statement of the obvious. "It's cold everywhere," Hana states flatly. "You just have the complete lack of sense as to be out here alone." She glances down the length of the road, the long and lonely road frosted in ice and snow. "And an inordinate amount of good luck," the Israeli allows grudgingly.

Watching Hana work from her seat in the dusted snow on the street, Colette furrows her brows and looks from the dirtbike to Hana and back again as she considers her response. Silence, ultimately, is it as she considers what the dark-haired woman has to say. Though as the bike comes right and the stand's kicked down, there's an audible sigh of relief that comes with seeing the front tire not twisted or mangled like she expected, and that sigh is accompanied by a puff of steamy breath over the sky blue scarf that's wound tightly around her throat.

"But like… you know me enough to know I got hurt and…" green eyes narrow into a squint, and Colette looks for all her worth to consider getting up from the ground, but then reconsiders ahd slouches back into a seated position. There's a moment of silence once more then teeth toy with the teen's lower lip, green eyes reconsider the snowbank and just how much luck Hana thinks she has. "You never told me your name…"

Silence suits Hana just fine — less so as it is broken. She looks over her shoulder at the girl, briefly, before occupying herself with cleaning the worst of the snow off the dirtbike's surfaces. That which wasn't dislodged by simple expedient of moving the bike. "I know the Ferry's business," the woman states bluntly; and Colette's injury, apparently, qualifies as such.

Stepping back from the machine, she pivots to face Colette directly, dark eyes assessing her again. Something is wanting in that assessment, if the thin line of her lips is any indication. "Hana," she allows absently, the question of who are you anyway obviously not high on her list of priorities or cares. "I have the distinct impression," the technopath continues, "that it'd be your life if I let you get back on that bike tonight."

Brows furrowing, Colette moves to get up from the ground again but something about when green eyes meets brown reminder her that Hana ordered her to stay still so she just slouches forward again and rolls her tongue against the inside of her cheek while considering the Israeli. "Hana? I— I guess I never heard of you before, sorry I— I'm sort've new to all've this. So like, you're sort've like Alistair? He knows all the ins and outs of stuff too…" Cocking her head to the side, the brunette glances over at her bike, then up to Hana with a crooked smile.

"Are you gonna' make me sit out here in the snow all night?" It's a bit of a teasing commentary from the teen, but gently so. "Cause, um, I— I don't even know like, where you came from," there's a look around at that, as if Colette's trying to puzzle out which direction Hana's already disappearing footsteps may have led from, "…but— and I know this might not be like, totally important to you, but um…"

Wrinkling her nose, Colette's green eyes settle back on Hana, lips slanted into a crooked smirk. "My— butt's kind've going numb from the cold." Dignified.

"I should," the woman replies — and she isn't teasing.

Doesn't dwell on that statement either, as she turns back to the dirtbike, grabbing hold of the handlebars and lifting the kickstand to push it out of the road. "You can get up now," Hana continues with considerable exasperation. No, you really can't make her happy. "But suturing is not one of my skills. If you pull out stitches you are on your own." Maybe not exactly true — no doctor would ever claim credit for anything she stitched up, but she's capable of some approximation. When she wants to be.

The bike, she hauls into the shelter of the warehouse's loading dock, its doors permanently warped to a partially-ajar state by fire damage; the snow inside is even less than drifts would suggest, speaking to someone's interest in clearing at least a useful portion. The fact that there's a motorcycle also residing in the cavernous space, black curves faintly glittering with frost from disuse, might have something to do with that. Lights leading through a door and into the damaged building's depths flicker into life at a transmitted directive from Hana; she casts the girl behind her a cool and level look. "Don't go wandering outside the lit areas. And don't do anything stupid, or you'll find out firsthand just how cold it gets out here." Translation: not wise to annoy the lioness while in her den.

The whole way following Hana to the burned out ruins of the old Primatech Paper facility has Colette in somewhat reverent silence. Green eyes are alight towards the ceiling when the lights flicker on, and one of her gloved hands keeps brushing at the wet seat of her pants, one brow lifted and nose wrinkled as she follows behind the technopath, unknowing that she's actually Wireless. Of course when she's told not to go anywhere that isn't lit, her pupils dilate noticably and she squints against the artificial lighting, glancing left and right down the halls and then back to Hana's silhouette ahead of her.

"That motorcycle back there's awesome," the teen notes with a crook of her lips into a smile, "one've these days when I'm not like, you know," she waves a hand over the top of her head to measure height, "I'm going to pick up something like that. My friend Ygraine's totally a big fan an' stuff…"

Hustling so she can catch up to Hana, Colette moves to walk at the technopath's side, hands folded behind her back and smile crooked, one brow lifted quizzically. "So do you have a catchy name for thie place like all the other safehouses? Like— the Garage or the Factory or something?" Green eyes are lit up with youthful enthusiasm, and Hana may not have entirely realized what she's invited into her home.

There is no echoing levity in the woman's demeanor as she listens to Colette's giddy teenage babble, no amusement of any flavor, sardonic or otherwise. Not even the warmth of a compliment received; Hana isn't a fan, she just rides a motorcycle. "This is not a safehouse, Demsky," she states flatly, even as she moves to the loading platform and retrieves a long black-bristled brush from its resting place near the wall. The kind of brush used for sweeping surfaces.

Where Colette has been directed to head further in, Hana actually begins to retrace their steps, returning outside. But before they part ways: "It's mine," stated with all the fierce possessiveness of the Israeli's nature.

She knows what she's invited in; but her responsibilities, however self-assigned they may be, allow no less.

In short, this building now contains the makings of absolute disaster.

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