The Space Between


eve4_icon.gif mara_icon.gif

Scene Title The Space Between
Synopsis Eve finds no cause in effect.
Date September 22, 2018

There is a chill wind in the morning, it's frosty edges curling over windshields and the ground, morning dewdrops frozen into tiny clear spheres as the combat boots worn by Eve Mas crunch on overgrown earth and she moves past a shrub, shouldering her messenger bag on one shoulder while holding her metal bo staff in her right hand, striding ahead to a place unknown.

She had just wanted to.. move. Eve had been going through a lot this year and a moment’s peace was a delightful concept even though it was Eve herself doing absolutely everything in her power to ruin her own piece, chasing after Adam, this Entity and while so many had begun to say stop, she just could not. Or maybe she could, maybe she had seen enough, tried enough. No.

Wrapped in a dark grey sweater dress and black leggings, her long sweater jacket trails behind her leaving a trail of sorts, but Eve wasn't necessarily trying to hide and stay stealthy at the moment. Coming to a patch of earth that has a few large stones in no sort of formation or order, the pale woman leans against a boulder and pulls out a joint twisted up before she had set out. Thick streams of smoke lift to cover her face and up towards the morning sky, Eve leans her head back to stare up at the sky as she inhales.

A tree falls in the woods, followed by a crashing sound and the explosion of a dozen branches shattering at once. The felled tree came down precariously close to Eve, sending leaves blowing up from the ground and a cloud of dust up into the air. A moment later, there's a scream and a snap, followed by silence.

A moment later the birdsong comes back, and someone crunches through the undergrowth, dragging something heavy behind them as they move. Whatever it is, it's not far off. Whatever it is, hopefully it isn't Samson Gray.

The sounds of screams and crashing break Eve from her thoughts and the woman jumps as smoke wafts and trails around her, “Wh—” rolling to the ground with a muffled yelp the seer looks up with wide eyes and leaves in her hair. Trying and failing to blow the leaf clinging to her lips the woman looks over in the direction of the sounds of something being dragged.

Picking her way through the leaves and fallen trees the woman makes sure to keep her staff close and moves on her hands and knees clutching the messenger bag tight to her chest so it doesn't drag in the leaves after eventually she realizes she’ll need to stand or collapse the staff. Standing slowly, Eve takes a breath before turning her head to look for her lost joint. Ah well. Following the sounds she’ll do. Slowly, peeking through the foliage for a glimpse at what is going on. If it's Hamson, that's fucked.

It isn't Samson.

As Eve rounds one of the tall pine trees she sees a blonde woman in a blood-spattered button down shirt and black slacks, suspenders hanging loose off of her hips, dragging a man in urban camouflage clothing by the ankle through the woods. Her hair is swept back from her brow and falls to the nape of her neck, blue eyes wide and focused like a hawk’s.

After a moment, she turns and looks directly at Eve and drops the man she was dragging. Eve notices he doesn't move, one arm broken in a compound fracture and neck clearly snapped as well. The blonde curls her fingers closed on one hand into a tight, bloody-knuckled fist.

“Hi.” She says to Eve with all the verbal force of a thrown knife.

“Heelllooooo.” The syllables elongated before descending and trailing off on note. Eve blinks brown eyes and surveys the man whose not moving with the bent arm and the blonde in the dashing attire. “Suspenders, I like those. Debonair.” White teeth gleam as that Cheshire Cat smile appears on her face. She can’t really say this is her first time popping up on a killer in the middle of nowhere, by herself.

Those eyes shift to the ground and the stiff body laying there. “Are you taking out the trash?” Inching forward her dress sweeping along the forest floor, a long, delicate pale finger points towards the man, “Maybe I can drag his legs.” His fate seems to be sealed and being helpful.. makes it more likely the blonde won't kill her.

Or if you're batshit crazy, the murderers seemed to not want to put up with the hassle of killing a crazy woman.

Reaching up and running a hand through her hair, the tall blonde woman takes a step over the body and toward Eve. She squints, then looks back over her shoulder at the figure laying on the ground, then back to Eve. “I’ll give you this one for free,” she says with a flick of pale bangs out of her face, “turn around, and go back to whatever brothel you crawled out of… because this,” she motions to the corpse behind her, “doesn’t actually concern you.”

In the distance, there’s the sounds of dogs barking and men shouting. “I mean it,” she adds emphatically. A motion of her chin in the direction behind Eve, a wordless leveling of blue eyes. Go, run.

“Are you looking out for me? A stranger!” Asked cheerfully the pale woman looks bashful, “You're sweet really.” Eve still wants her nice fresh air, well fresh is a matter of opinion because the woman with unruly hair pulls out a fresh joint and lights it, shuffling over to the side where the fallen tree sits, Eve plops down on it and smokes. “My Mother was a stripper, the great undeniable, Valerie Mas. You must have heard of her! But I don't work with the flesh no no I'm more of a.. hm.. crazy lady who sees things but people say we looked alike.” Eve’s hand goes to touch her face with a fond smile at the memory of her mother. The wild woman’s gaze turns to Mara then more closely, “Were you.. no no not a past customer you're much too young.” Eve looks suspicious but then she notices the sounds of dogs and men shouting and her expression grows tense.

Oh you have caused some trouble in the Deep Green. I'm sorry I disturbed,” as if the sound of men and dogs presumingly searching for the pale blonde woman were the signs of trouble and not the corpse laying a few feet away from both women. Pushing off of the tree the seer moves positions closer to the edge of the tree line so that she can “run” when the need arises. Reaching her free hand into her bag of tricks, Eve rummages around. “Ok ok I'll be out of your hair in two shakes just looking for..” The darker haired woman continues looking in her bag as she whispers hotly to Mara, they are in a conspiracy together.

Eve has come upon another mischief maker, it wouldn't do to disrespect no no. Just climb the tree and sit and don’t swing.

“Quiet.” Is said to nobody in particular, more muttered to herself.

“I don't care if your mother was the Mata-fucking-Hari,” Mara hisses as she grabs Eve by the collar and hoists her up into the low branches of the tree with considerable — though hardly superhuman — strength. The barking dogs get closer, and Mara turns to them with a furrow of her brows and a crack of the knuckles on both hands. Eve is left to climb up the tree as Mara steps forward, blue eyes narrow.

Three dogs come into view, snarling and barking, collars on their necks and scars on their snouts. Mara clenches her hands tightly, tongue sliding against the side of her cheek. Someone is coming through the treeline, holding a rifle. He raises it, trained on Mara…

…and pulls the trigger.

Staten Island Trade Commission


One Hour Later

“So, I said to him, that's not your wife, that's my girlfriend!” A handful of scruffy dock workers bellow with laughter around the folding card table, beers in hand and cheap cigarettes burning in the dim light. Mara Angier sits beside Eve at the table, her hand of cards face down and flat on the surface and a horrible, locally-brewed beer swirling in at recycled brown bottle.

“So, Eve,” Mara turns and offers an askance look to the prophet. “Two questions:,” she motions to her with the neck of her bottle, “One, what the fuck is your deal. Two, are you going to play or sit there holding your cards all night?”

Down in her hand, Eve holds the Queen of Spades, Diamonds, and Clubs, the Jack of Hearts, and an 8 of Diamonds.

Wait. What?

“I.. I..” a flash of herself climbing up the tree while Mara goes to face the dogs and then the man with the rifle.. but he.. missed? It all plays over for Eve but she can't shake the feeling of deja vu, forehead rubbed the darker haired woman erupts into laughter with the others, she's zoned back in during a joke and roaring laughter more than once, best to act like you've got it. Eyeing her hand of cards her eyebrows raise, “I'm meeting with a female friend,” eyes flicking to Mara, “Three Times.” She whispers the meaning behind the playing card (if you're using them for divination) coils around her mind. The Jack, disagreements. Well that explained their earlier run in at the Greenbelt.

“I see the future, I've died twice and I'm being haunted by a interdimensional Entity.” Eyes slowly lift to Mara’s blue ones, “What about you?”

Before a grin plays across her face and she lays her hand face up on the table. “Give me all your monies.” She's confident in her hand.

Mara laughs and shakes her head. “You're weird, but you're also bad at Poker.” She lays her cards down on the table; a 4, a Jack, an 8, a 2, and a 9 all of Spades. “Flush beats three of a kind, Eve.” But as Mara reaches for the pot and the others are throwing down their cards in disgust, one of the dock workers lays down a Four of a Kind with Kings. Mara looks side-long at the cards, then exhales a whooping laughter and rakes a hand through her hair.

“Well, fuck. Looks like I'm bad at Poker too.” Mara opines as the Trade Commission worker hauls a pile of crumpled bills and coins across the table to himself. “Tonight was fun, but it's almost midnight and as much as it might not seem like it, I need my beauty sleep.”

Pushing back her chair and rising to stand, Mara crosses her arms over her chest and looks to the others, then to Eve. “But, you know, it was cool of you to come and play. Your car’s outside, I think Pico pulled it around.” Mara tosses Eve’s key's to her in an underhand throw.

Eve frowns and then cackles as Mara follows her lead and loses her own hand. The dark haired woman’s white teeth gleam and she snorts as the worker collects his winnings, “We have shit luck, both of us.” Gripping the edge of the table, Eve can't shake that feeling of the familiar. Tilting her head at Mara she blinks as the pale haired woman begins to send people home.

Catching her keys and subtly sliding them into her cleavage and bra, “Oh no. One more hour, let's go to a roof.” Eve’s expression is pleading and then she leans in closer to wink, “You're immaculate, you? Needing beauty sleep? Pffft.” Waving her hand in the air dismissively. “Goddesses never know they're goddesses.” Hands go to find the ends of her dress and she looks down and considers for a moment this day and how.. not off it feels.

Head snapping upwards, Eve squints at the space around Mara’s form searching for the clues that sometimes popped up in her eyesight as of late.

Pressing her tongue to the inside of her cheek, Mara stares at Eve in thought for a moment. “My luck’s fine,” she denies with a dismissive wave of one hand. The others are starting to move away, and Mara reaches up to scrub the heel of her palm against her brow.

“Fine,” Mara relents, “we can go up to the warehouse roof. I need a smoke anyway.” At that she tugs a partly crushed pack of cigarettes out of her back pocket and starts to head toward the stairs. “Come on, puppy.”

Clapping her hands together Eve cheers as she hops to her feet, grabbing a almost crumpled up joint from her bra and sticking it in her mouth, a pale hand goes out to place itself on Mara's shoulders and Eve leans in with a wicked grin, “Lead the conga line of course.” Eve was ready to follow.

Snapping her heels together with a ‘Ahhh’ the seer looks around the place as they make their way to the roof.

“Do you like it here? The island could be..” well desolate, dangerous, fun. All of those things and Eve knew it but Mara seemed totally capable protecting herself and Eve even, she wrinkles her nose and blinks up at the ceiling. “You can just throw someone across the island though.” The dark haired woman says this with a lot of confidence.

“I was born and raised here, actually,” Mara admits with a shrug as she ascends the stairs. The old, gray wood creaks under her feet. “My father ran a propane business, mom stayed at home. Dad died in the bomb, delivering to the wrong place at the wrong time…” Mara stops at one of the landings, looking down a floor, “mom died in a hospital after. She got sick from the fallout.”

Pushing away from the railing, Mara takes her hands through her hair and walks backwards past Eve and then to the stairs, continuing on the past to the roof. “I was living out on Tompkinsville when it all fell apart, stayed on Staten because I didn't have anywhere else to go. Watched the Rookery come to life around me…”

Winding up the next set of stairs, Mara smiles faintly. “After mom died it didn't really matter what I did. Nobody was going to judge me, y’know? So I just did what I had t’do to survive. Fought in the Pancrateum for money until that place burned to the ground. Did miscellaneous bodyguard work after that. You know, paid the bills.”

Reaching the door to the roof, Mara pushes it open and steps out into the cool night air. Save for firelights, little else is illuminated on Staten Island save for a warm glow around pockets of areas with kerosine generators producing a little ambient outdoor light. Moths gather around an oil lamp burning by the roof door.

“Mr. Black offered me good work to rebuild home. To clean up the island.” Looking back at Eve, Mara raises a brow. “Why’re you out here?”

A tragic story.

Eve loves stories tragic or joyful.

“I'm sorry for your loss.” She says it and means it, everyone had lost something precious to the Bomb, to her friend Peter though it is still hard for Eve to blame him. “I was born in the city, my mother I told you! The Late Great Valerie Mas, she could spin a pole faster than a gremlin.” Fondly staring up at the ceiling as they walk and she follows, Eve taps her fingers on the railing of the stairs. “Daddy didn't really like that she was a entertainer,” using her mother's word for it Eve can still remember their arguments. “He owned a mechanics shop.. that was also something up.” Thinking back to that warehouse like space with the labyrinth of tunnels underneath.

“When the Bomb happened, I lost them both.. my three roommates… I couldn't even warn them. Chained to the bed, quiet Ms. Mas! Take your pills Mas! They would say, shrieking, trying to tell them there was something coming I just didn't know what..” after all this time she still feels regret for not being able to figure out that dream, strapped to the bed of the mental ward. “But I made up for that,” there's a wicked grin on the pale woman’s face as she recounts her own transformation as Mara had.

“I dreamed of a group who would bring us the justice and rights we deserved. We stood for something, for our brothers and sisters. For all the gifts.” The dark haired woman doesn't look regretful of those past actions, Eve stands by them. “We bombed, we raided, we fucked up. It was glorious and it all… led… to…”

As the two women come out to the roof and the little lit world that is Staten Island, Eve spun around and pointed upwards, “This.” Coming to the middle of the space, Eve takes a deep breath and holds it. “I lost a lot of people on the way, lost myself more than I can count. I'm a wanderer baby.” Smiling over at Mara as she pulls from the freshly lit joint, smoke clinging to her hands. “I can't help but move, maybe there's a home base here in this place always maybe the whispers always lead me back.. but I have to see. More than my dreams. More than inside my mind.” Eve’s wandering heart thumps loudly in her chest.

“So that's why I'm out here, away from my Cradle, wandering.. seeing.. meeting..” not dreaming, an exhaustion of breath has a plum of smoke billowing outwards and being carried by the breeze. “What's the use of sleeping when you don't feel it or you end up in a parking garage from sleeping am I right?” The joke falls flat, even for Eve.

“I used to sleepwalk,” is all Mara takes away from that entire conversation. “When I was seven, I slept-walked straight out of my bed and down the stairs. Some people do weird, stupid shit like put their socks in the dishwasher or whatever…” Mara scoffs and walks to the edge of the roof. “I climbed out a second story window and broke my arm.” As if demonstrating that she's ok now, Mara flexes the fingers on that hand.

Raising her shoulders in a shrug, Mara turns around and looks at Eve. “Why the fuck’re you here?” She suddenly asks, expression scrunched up in a look of confusion. “All the way out here t’play cards and lose a bunch of money.” She runs a hand through her hair. “There's so many other places you could be. I just don't get it.”

Sideways glance at the pale haired woman and Eve stares unblinkingly in her direction, there was a time where her eyes were the color of light grey and that stare would inspire a tremor in the extremities of men but even without the almost white iris to confront Mara, Eve’s look is studying and more so than she was before.

The look of confusion is met by Eve’s own look of mild confusion, why is she here? Out of all places…? “Why.. not?” a hand held up, Eve staring at a ring on her index finger. “This was a gift from my grandmother, my dad said she loved emerald colors.” Marveling at the jade like stone set in the ring. “I've worn it everywhere, worn it not at all but each and every time I've worn it… Even into battle on the backs of camels..” Eve’s brown eyes find the light. “I knew I could lose it. Lose it all if you will but the people in my family we.. don't really care about the why a lot of the time.. why risk this… why go there.. a more compelling question is why not.”

“The strands of things I see lead me all types of places.. I suppose the universe or the Fates decided that I would encounter a strong blonde woman who is very good at cards and taking people's money.”

Mara listens to Eve, but squints at her and tilts her head to the side without really seeming to grasp what the seer is saying. There's a subtle face, a little squint at purse of her lips, then a raise of her brows and a shake of her head. “I knew a gal who had a pretty ring like that,” isn't the response Eve was hoping for from Mara. “Big thing, silver and turquoise, one diamond chip. She worked at the Happy Dagger back when that was a thing.”

Mara tucks her hands into her slacks and walks back toward Eve. “Anyway, one day she's out past the dagger, past where John Logan’s protection was good. She flashed that ring, and sure enough…” Mara’s shoulders come up into a slow shrug. “She was short one ring, and one finger.”

A wry smile crosses Mara’s lips. “Staten Island’s a fucking place, ain't it? Seeds and sawbones, it takes all kinds.”

“Back just after the Bomb hit..” She almost says Peter. Tapping her joint to ash it the pale woman takes a deep toke and blows the smoke rapidly from her lungs, “There was an assignment and I was a very well behaved Eve, scouts honor. Some loudmouth with a gun. Rallying little minions to his cause against people like us.” The very memory makes her snarl and Eve looks off to the ruined landscape of Staten Island. “I was just to wire the house to blow. BOOM.” Stomping her foot at the same moment in emphasis Eve cracks a dark smile before it flickers and turns down to a frown.

“His coo coo for coco puffs zealot wife was outside.” Eve falls silent for a moment as she pictures that clip in her mind, “Her eyes were so wide.. the greenest green but not wide in fear, she was vindicated. I was proving her right about us.”

The smoke from her joint intermingles with the smoke of Mara’s cigarette. “I slit her throat and blew the house up earlyyyyy.” The last word drawn out in a singsong tone and Eve sways back and forth. “I've never been afraid of monsters not truly,” though they give her scares in the bump of the night but it was.. like the thrill of it. To hunt or be hunted was a thrilling experience, addicting even. “That's why I always end up in places of seed and bones. This shit stain’s got nothing on what's in the brainpan.” Tapping her temple with a snort and lazy half lidded gaze at the tall woman.

A snap of her fingers and Eve points to the woman standing in front of her, “Gee golly gosh, I never asked your name.” In this moment Eve tries something that she's tried in the past to various levels of successful all resulting in a headache no matter what happens. Squinting her eyes, almost to the point of her vision going unfocused Eve tries to see the strands and symbols of meaning around the unnamed woman. She couldn't put her finger on it but Mara… was curious.

The world feels strangely stable, like a steady marble countertop on four stout oak legs. For once, Eve’s grasp on reality feels firmer than ever, and yet at the same time more slippery and tenuous, like that table had a jello mold on top, making it hard to latch onto. The sensation is quite unlike anything she's experienced before.

“Mara,” she belatedly replies. “Mara Angier.” Blue eyes look Eve up and down, and Mara tucks her hands into her pockets, then turns to the glittering skyline of the NYC Safe Zone beyond. “Nice to meet you, Miss Mas.”

Then, brows furrowed, Mara stares more intently at the distant shore. “Mas,” she says again with a hushed tone. “Sounds familiar,” she remarks, looking back at Eve with a faint smile.

“Like something from another life.”

Cat’s Cradle

The Oracle Room

Some Time Later…

Cigarette in one hand, Eve blinks open her eyes as her head bobs back upright. The sensation of having briefly fallen asleep jolts her more soundly awake. The radio in the corner of the room is still softly playing music from WSZR, and Eve’s cigarette has an inch long ash dangling off the end. It was a long drive back from Staten Island, she imagines. Much of the drive sort of blew by, and the next thing she knew she was home.

Driving is funny like that. One minute you're somewhere you expect, the next your miles from home…

With no memory of the space between.

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