Two Pieces


colette_icon.gif tamara_icon.gif

Scene Title Two Pieces
Synopsis On Christmas Eve, Colette spends her time with Tamara, and makes a promise that Tamara has known since she met the girl, but only now becomes spoken.
Date December 24, 2009

Le Rivage, Judah and Colette's Apartment

Have yourself a… Merry little Christmas.

Outside the windows of the ground floor apartment, snow falls in slow and thick flakes down on the streets of New York City. Here behind the brick walls of Le Rivage, the apartment of Judah Demsky and his adoptive daughter looks much the part of the holidays it has finally found itself settled so firmly in. Quiet music drifts in seasonal melody through the apartment, where colored lights flicker and flash on the admittedly artificial but still festively decorated tree.

Let your heart be light

Standing by the front windows in these early morning hours after sunrise, Colette watches the falling snow outside, and considers the recent departure of Judah Demsky to his office for the last day of work until his holiday vacation is finally — and likely forcibly — taken. Cradling a ceramic mug in both hands, steam winds in thin trails from the murky brown coffee container within. Pale gray-white light from outside silhouettes her thin frame, lazily sill in the clothing she wore to sleep; an old and comfortable gray sweater and drawstring flannel pants. Mismatched socked feet rest one atop the other in awkward stance, each foot trying to keep the other warm.

From now on, our troubles will be out of sight

Curled up at the base of the tree, as if he were a Christmas gift to be given away, the old gray-muzzled ex K-9 looks up with one salt and pepper colored brow to Colette, a huff of breath slipping from him before he closes his eyes and lets a quirked ear down. "She won't be much longer, Jupiter…" Colette says into the rim of her coffee mug, watching the snow in silence. "She always shows up when I think about going to look for her."

Have yourself a merry little Christmas…

Turning to look down at Jupiter, it's a particularly small pair of wrapped boxes near to the old dog that Colette's eyes settle on. A smile creeps up on her lips, head nodding slowly in affirmation of some private thought, and she considers the tags on each of the tiny boxes, before looking back out to the window. She's not waiting for something as fictious as Santa Claus on this snowy Christmas Eve. She's waiting for something equally mysterious, but far more needed.

Almost always. But who counts the times she doesn't come? Especially when today isn't one of them.

The key in the door, the gentle push that afterwards closes it again, are muted even in the quiet apartment; Tamara walks in on stocking feet, with her shoes — well, where they are is anyone's guess, but it's moderately certain they aren't far away. Her socks are still reasonably white. She's traded the black pants of their last meeting for blue jeans starting to fray at the hems; the blouse is the same, though, just a few shades greener than the teen's eyes. Her hair is loose, haphazardly falling about her shoulders and across her face; and here the mix of casual with nice that seems to have informed Tamara's choice of clothing is carried through, eyeliner faintly tracing the edges of her eyes but no other makeup in evidence.

Her gaze rests on Colette, lips quirked sideways in an affectionately crooked smile. But it's to Jupiter that the seeress extends her hand first, fingers curling in a beckoning gesture. She knows the proper order of priorities.

Turning at the sound of the door shutting, Colette's expression is one of contentment and happiness when she sees Tamara come walking in. But it's Jupiter who's the first to rise up on all fours, tiredly exhaling a lazily breathed out woof before click-clicking his clawed steps across the hardwood floor to Tamara. His nose nuzzles across her palm, a happy whine escaping him as he searches further, snigging along one knee and then up towards her pockets, teeth bared in the heartbeat of a moment it takes for him to catch the corner of a dog biscuit poking out of Tamara's pocket specifically left for him. A crunch comes next, and jupiter is trotting off towards the kitchen with his tail swishing droopily behind him, taking his own version of a Christmas present down to his blanket.

Watching the exchange between Tamara and Jupiter, Colette's smile grows. The teen walks over to the tree where Jupiter had been laying, picking up the two small boxes stacked one atop the other in her free hand, and brings them over to the coffee table, setting them down in a stack that is quick to topple, one box landing corner-side down on the table lightly.

"C'mere," Colette insists, settling down on the couch and offering out one arm towards Tamara, dark brow raised and lips quirked to the side. Her other hand remains occupied with her coffee that she seems reluctant to part with.

She watches as the dog makes his way off into the kitchen, not moving from her spot until he's settled. Only then does Tamara turn towards Colette, shifting back into motion when that summoning arm is extended. She picks her way around the table, the long way, giving the boxes on it a passing glance and an enigmatic smile; carefully places her feet in the space between couch and coffee table, until she can fold her knees and drop into the space that has been defined by Colette's arm and designated as belonging to her.

In the process, the seeress plucks that coffee cup out of the younger girl's grip.

Wrapping both hands around the curve of the mug, she lifts it up to her face, grinning lightly over the line of its rim. Most people would proceed to drink from their prize; Tamara doesn't. She just inhales the scent of it.

All the better to free up Colette's arms. The teen leans in, wrapping her arms snugly around Tamara, leaning in to press a kiss to her temple, followed by a light touch of her nose before leaning back and glancing at the boxes. "I wrapped 'em 'cause it's pretty. I… know you already know what they are, but that's kinda' half the point." Dark brows go up, and Colette's smile turns playful. Scooting a bit closer to Tamara, she crosses one leg over the other, then reaches out to take one box in each hand. Green eyes alight ot the older girl, and only one of the boxes is offered out. Wrapped in green abd red paper with little gold accents, the sticker-tag on the top reads rather obviously, From: Colette, to: Tamara.

The other/ box held in Colette's hand is matching in its small size and wrapping, but the sticker identifies that it's to //Colette and quite mysteriously from Santa. Sure, she bought them both and one's going to her, but it's the holiday spirit that counts.

"A year ago, I hardly knew you…" Colette says as she sheepishly looks down to Tamara, then out and over to the windows. "I mean— I— don't know a lot about you now," she admits with an awkward laugh, "but it feels like I do." She finally looks back to Tamara, lips creeping up into a smile again. "It feels like I've known you so much longer than I have, it— I don't know. I don't know if you meant to… or if you meant things to wind up like this, but— you taught me how to trust people again. Before I met you— I never wanted to let anyone else in. Never— never could've become who I am without you."

Fingers toying with the edges of her wrapped box, Colette stares down at it, face a bit red from all of the talk. "You taught me how to… how to be close to someone, you— sort've made all the terrible things that happened to me go away." Looking up from the box, Colette smiles a bit more earnestly, more emotionally. "So— So when I found out that some people went to the future, I— asked them about us."

Leaning to one side, Colette picks at the taped corner of the wrapping paper. "They said we were still together, ten years in the future, and— and that you were better." Carefully having chosen the word better, Colette anxiously looks up to Tamara, uncertain how she might react to the idea. "They— they said we were happy."

One hand uncurls from its grip on the coffee mug to take the proffered box. The cup is lowered, the box raised, the better to regard its festive wrapping. One finger rubs over the pattern, connecting the dots between patches of color. "One person walked a road," Tamara remarks quietly. "But they didn't write it alone."

Her hands are full, and the seeress peers down at them as if puzzled how that happened; the coffee cup is abandoned to the table. She knows better than to let go of the box. The freed hand reaches over to flick a bit of hair back from Colette's face, tracing her fingers down the line of the younger girl's jaw. "Ten years is a lot of things, Colette," the seeress murmurs, her gaze steady upon her companion; tone and expression those that go with the sentiments be careful and are you certain.

"One year's been a lot of things," Colette notes with a wry smile, leaning her weight subtly against Tamara. "One year down and nine more to go, right?" One black brow quirks up, and the teen's focus is settled on the blonde at her side unwaveringly. "You… you've done more for me than I even know how to say. I— I know I'm really hard to handle sometimes, an' I'm kind've a putz, and— " she grimaces awkwardly, teeth toying with her lower lip. "I want— I want you to know that I'm never going to abandon you. No matter hwat happens, no matter how bad things get I— you'n me…" she offers a weak smile. "I'm always going to be here for you."

Embarrassed by her own speech, Colette starts picking at the wrapping paper and pulling it away, giving a go ahead nod of her head to Tamara. As the paper comes peeling off, it reveals an unremarkable black ring box, the same as the kind wrapped up in Tamara's hands. "You gave me that bracelet last year…" Colette says quietly, "an' I never take it off, 'cause it reminds me of you. I— I always see it, and it— it always helps me remember how important you are."

Stumbling a bit, unsure of herself, Colette finishes unwrapping the box and opens the lid, smiling down at what she knows is inside, green eyes looking from it up to Tamara, waiting to see her reaction to what has already been revealed to her a dozen and a half times in the last few moments of thought.

The sybil smiles softly, accepting Colette's words as they are; as they could be. After a moment more, she turns her attention to to the box in her hands, sliding a fingernail under the tape and coaxing one end of the wrapping free. From there, Tamara tears it off in a single long spiral, breaking through other pieces of tape as needed. When eyes and talent both hold the sight of the black crushed-velvet ring box, her lips pull sideways in a rueful smile. "You know you kept the box," she remarks.

Blue eyes flick up to Colette before Tamara thumbs the box open, revealing the silver band with its round, colorless stone and the asymmetrical niche intended to interlock with another piece. It's hard to react to something which was already a known quantity, something that has hung on the horizon of her perceptions ever since the rings were purchased; she doesn't, exactly. The teen looks down at the faceted jewel for a long, silent moment, her gaze distant; seeing more, less, other. Perhaps it's what she perceives that leads to Tamara removing the ring from its case, sliding it without ceremony onto the ring finger of her left hand.

The pause is enough to make Colette got ight with tension, waiting to see how Tamara react once the moment has finally caught up to her sight. A breath of relief escapes her, and she takes out of the same box she opened a matching silver band, one smoother and without the stone, but the notches in its design are clearly something that interlocks with the ring Tamara wears on her hand. Colette doesn't hesitate in sliding it on, teeth toying with her lower lip as she considers the band, then looks up to Tamara. It's true, she does keep both boxes, closing the one in her hand, setting it aside on the sofa, then taking Tamara's and closing it up to lay beside hers.

"I… I've been saving up to get you this since my birthday. The— the money Nicole and Judah both gave me went towards it, an' what I made working at Bit by Bit." There's a nervous expression, still, from Colette as she reaches up and lays her ring-laden hand on top of Tamara's. "They're not really the same, not complete without both pieces." Green eyes alight to Tamara, and Colette turns her hand around, lacing fingers between the sybil's.

"An' they fit together kinda' funny, like— it doesn't really look like theys hould, y'know? They're a puzzle." Her eyes have something of a glassy quality, not the distant look of a seer's, but the emotional cast of someone taking a moment ot heart. "I know… you can't really be stumped by any kinda' puzzle, which is sort've the point. You— you know how this all fits together." Colette squeezes Tamara's hand, "an' I'm still figuring it out." Her eyes drift down to their intertwined hands, and then Colette leans in, pulling Tamara's hand closer towards her as she tilts her chin up, nose brushing against the older girl's. Tamara can taste the coffee now.

Now bereft of the box, Tamara slides her ringless hand through Colette's hair, pad of her thumb tracing over the curve of the younger girl's forehead. Smiles crookedly against her lips. "It's not so much to figure out," murmurs the seer, although her opinion of the matter is undoubtedly skewed. Being able to pick and choose outcomes to any extent will do that.

She shifts position a bit, pressing her cheek against Colette's, looking over the other girl's shoulder towards the decorated Christmas tree without really seeing it. Jupiter is chewing slowly through his treat, scattered crumbs waiting on the blanket to be inhaled later. There's a coffee cup on the table still, and that earns a moment of attention. "Your coffee's getting cold," Tamara murmurs against Colette's ear, as quietly as such prosaic words can be said and still be heard, breath tickling softly through dark hair.

Contended breathing, that almost sleep-sounding breath that comes with complete relaxation, exhales from Colette. Her eyes fall shut, one arm holding Tamara close, her cheek pressed to Colette's. The breath of words against her ear causes Colette to shivver, nose angling into Tamara's as she presses one gently kiss to her earlobe. "I make more later," Colette says in teasing mimicry of Tamara's oft-certain sybillic prose, leaning her weight against the older girl as a giggle slips out from the back of her throat. Viewed from the back of the sofa, the two disappear in the couch's silhouette, guided back by Colette.

The younger of the two brings a hand up to Tamara's cheek, thumb brushing softly beneath one eye, green eyes meeting blue, assessing the level of dark that the size of her pupils take one, knowing well that part of the puzzle as she leans in, pressing warm lips to the blonde's forehead. She takes one of Tamara's hands in hers, fingers laced together, arm straightening, and as Colette's face flushes red she ensures that Tamara's fingers find the knotted ties of drawstrings

"You got one more gift to unwrap…" Colette whispers against Tamara's forehead without hesitation, followed by a kiss pressed to the bridge of Tamara's nose, then once more words whispered against the sybil's lips, felt more as breath than they are heard. "I know it's not a surprise," she whispers warmly, "…but it's yours."

For all that, Tamara slides her fingers loose, finding purchase again in the other teen's shorter hair. She looks down at Colette, gaze steady but tracking slowly down the length of her expression, visibly darkening in the instinctive and pervasive assessment of action, reaction, outcome. The sybil doesn't speak, not in words; and while the changing planes of her face are both as weighted and as abstract as such words might be, without the context of what perceptions inform them, no clear interpretation can be drawn.

Tamara's gaze is as dark as can be, and a drop of saltwater makes the kiss she gives Colette bittersweet.

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