Unexpected Visitor


valerie_icon.gif warren_icon.gif

Scene Title Unexpected Visitor
Synopsis Despite having a life rife with bad news, Warren gets some good in the form of a genuine little sister.
Date January 14, 2011

Shalegate Machine Factory

Constructed in the 1700s the foundation for the Shalegate Machine Factory is a red-brick mill building that at one point in his spotted history served as a production plant for ammunition during World War II. Much of that original ammunition production equipment still resides within these factory walls, along with an assortment of newer metalsmithing tools in the factory floor. While a large building, much of the interior space is in high ceilings laden with tall windows that let in rich amounts of daylight and ambient strete light at night.

The interior of the favtory itself has a workshop area for the production of hand-made metal components, lathes and assorted tool benches, while a second floor drafting room has tables designed for the design of blueprints and other mechanical schematics. While modern electronic security systems give the factory an overall defense against ordinary breaking and entering.

It's the middle of the afternoon, and Warren is spending this day like most of his days, working on some project. He's in his black suit with the unbuttoned jacket, staring down at a four foot tall presumably robot body with thousands of gears and things with no shell or head yet. It lays on heaps of blueprints, and his walls are also covered in blueprints relating to the mind-machine interface for a certain other project. "You'll be complete, eventually…"

Usually, when someone comes in uninvited, the security system or the various robotic technologies in the lab would give ample warning. This time, there is none at all. No doors open, no alarms buzz, the electronic eyes in the building don't seem to notice anything at all out of the ordinary. The guards outside must not have seen anything of note either, because they didn't call in.

"Is that the mind machine?" the young voice asks, from a direction behind the scientist. Blonde and pretty, Valerie is rather short and rather young, and she's dressed in bright greens and colors, and her feet aren't quite touching the floor, upon close inspection. The electronics don't even register her voice. Only Warren seems to.

Warren suddenly turns around, pulling a plain black remote with around fifty unmarked buttons from his jacket, pointing it at her. His silvery reflective hand matches his eyes as it balls into a fist, choosing not to grab anything with that one. Why is there a girl here? "This robot is a personal project that has nothing to do with anyone. Who are you?" he asks with clear suspicion, continuing to point the unassuming remote.

The remote just seems to make her tilt her head. Blue eyes seem to be amused a bit, before her arms go up, in the universal 'I am unarmed' stance that everyone knows. Even someone four years out of time. "I'm Kaylee's sister, Valerie," she says simply, with a kind of smile tugging on her lips. "So if that is to find out something from dad, then it does have something to do with me. With both of us, actually— all three of us."

With that, she lets her arms drop. There's something wrong with the way her hair shifts when she does, like it's not quite right. "Cause he's your dad too, and Kaylee's, and mine." And when she steps forward, that oddity becomes more noticed. She glides, rather than steps. Her feet make no sound against the floor, and at one point her toes dip into the floor itself. And she has no shadow.

"You're my little… I mean, we don't know that for sure." Warren slips his remote back into his jacket, silvery eyes shifting back to a more natural blue as he stares with a slightly pained expression. "I don't want to get attached to a family that might not be mine, I'd rather come to terms with having no idea who I am, than to have to lose everything all over again." He reaches back for the robot body, shaking his head. "This has nothing to do with the machine, there aren't blueprints for this, it's purely from my mind."

"But— didn't Kaylee tell you? About the DNA test she was going to do?" Valerie says with a tilt of her head. "He really is our dad— or at least we three definitely are half siblings. So… you don't have to hold on to false hope." Her voice lacks most of the emotions that she might be feeling, and it isn't very visible on her face. Projects only need to show as much as she wants—

"Kaylee would have come to tell you herself, I'm sure, but it's dangerous for her to come here, because people might follow her. I don't have to worry about anyone following me when I leave. But you really are our brother."

"I see… so, you're my little sister?" Warren reaches out to try and touch her head, but when his hand goes through, he's reminded that it's simply a projection and leans against the desk again. "She told me about the DNA test, but I thought we were waiting on results. It's just very hard to process this, I don't get good news very often. A valuable member of my team committed suicide today…"

There's no rippling effect when his hand goes through, no sign of anything at all actually there. The only distortion is the part of her head that isn't visible when his hand sinks in. "Sorry, if I came in person they could definitely follow me…" Valerie offers with a sheepish hint of a smile, though that doesn't last as she hears the bad news. "I'm sorry…" Though her voice doesn't quite carry the emotion, she does try to look it. "But I did want to bring good news."

"You did, I'm glad I have a nice little sister like you. I guess I should build you a robot Barbie… girls like lasers, right?" Warren asks as he seriously considers his question, looking up for a moment. It's best to try and move on from the bad news.

He pushes from the desk and crouches down, facing her eye to eye. "What did you say your name was, again? I feel like I should do something nice for you. It's so… I don't know, comforting, knowing that I have some solid link to the world."

"I never really liked dolls. I was always more into the doll houses. I like the way buildings are made, the designs, the way they look," Valerie says, though she stays close and there's no warmth coming from her, other than that smile that beams up again as she's called nice. "I know how that is— dad used to be my only solid link, but that was before— but now I have… others." Him and Kaylee. And perhaps two more, but she doesn't bring them up. Not now.

"And Valerie— Valerie Clover Ray, nice to meet you." She holds out her hand, toward him, but instead of holding it as if to shake, she holds it up palm facing him. Almost like a gesture one would expect in a scifi movie. At least her fingers stay together.

"But if you really want to get me something— you build things? Machines? Can you build things that help people get around if they have a hard time?"

Warren reaches out, lightly pressing his palm to her's, despite not being able to actually touch it. "I promise I'll be a good brother to you. I have fake memories, things that never actually happened, and in those memories I have a sister. You kind of remind me of her, a bit more than Kaylee. I don't know, kind of makes me think the memories aren't a total waste…"

At her question, he raises his silvery hand, then rolls his sleeve up about halfway, revealing his arm is the same. It's some sort of mirror-like latex material, and he opens and closes his hand. "I can't throw something as advanced as this together over night, but I can do something pretty good."

"Oh wow," Valerie says in a sign of admiration. As she leans forward as if to get a better look, he'll notice she casts no sign of a reflection on it. Or a distortion of the light reflecting of it. "That's really cool. I've never seen anything like that— except in movies. And video games." The last two being things Kendall and Kaylee both introduced her to more.

"Well I don't need a new arm, but— I have a hard time getting around, physically. I usually have to have crutches these days, I was always pretty weak. If you have to get me something, that'd be cool. Maybe one of those… awesome wheelchairs, or something."

"My little sister won't be confined to a wheelchair if I have anything to say about it." Warren crouches down again, this time a bit lower, taking a look at her legs. His eyes gloss over with that reflective silvery color, and he just seems to go into brainstorming mode. "I saw something interesting the other day, I could base some sort of advanced but streamlined braces on the technology. Nothing ugly and bulky, but maybe something you can wear pants over. I'd like to see you in person somewhere, I can make sure I'm not followed. I want to see exactly what's wrong with you, and examine your physical limitations first hand."

The projection doesn't even seem to be standing, really, and Valerie knows that, looking down at her legs with a frown, before looking back up at him. "Well I'm not confined anywhere, I mean here I am. This ability used to be the only way I'd really leave the house, unless I really wanted to go somewhere in person." No doubt it has it's own limits, most abilities do, but she's not worrying about those now.

"But… we can find a way to meet. Kaylee was really worried that the people— you know them— that they may be following you, or following anyone that visits you… so I can't really come here. And I don't know where all is safe for you to go… They've already got dad…" And they'd taken him, and Kaylee at one time too. So far she's the only one not taken by them.

"You don't have to worry about me, I have ways of going from place to place without anyone having any idea." Warren smiles up at her, possibly the most affectionate look anyone will see him with, guard completely lowered. "I'll do everything to make sure you have a much better life than I had. If you need anything, you just ask. That's my job, right?"

There's a pause, before she looks toward the robot. It's not the robot she's thinking of, though, but something else. "Dad might think I died," Valerie says quietly, chewing on her lip a moment. "I don't know how what you're planning works, but… I'd like him to know that I'm not. That his plan worked, and I'm alive and safe and… with my brother and sister."

For a moment, her eyes actually seem to glisten. Sometimes her real emotions seep through more than she'd want. "Is there anyway you can make sure he knows that? Even if I don't really want them to use him, I… when Kaylee told me what you were doing… if nothing else I'd want him to know that."

"I… I can't make any promises, but I may be able to do that. At the very least, I'll try, for you." Warren stands up straight, brushing himself off. "But I'm a little confused. What's this plan you're talking about? And why would he think you're dead?"

"Because I was in Midtown when the bomb went off," Valerie says, looking down toward her hands for a moment. There's more to it than that, of course, but some times lies are best hid in the truth. "And I haven't seen him since. He'd told me to be somewhere else, and I wasn't— he even called me right before it happened, to make sure I was somewhere else… and I wasn't."

"I see… but you're alright now, somehow. That's what's important." Warren once again reaches out, this time for her shoulder. He's having trouble getting used to this. "So you actually managed to grow up with our father? You knew him?"

"Yeah," Valerie says, voice kind of a whisper. She still smiles at his attempts to make with physical contact, but she can't really offer any of that, unfortunately. But she has her smile, which she offers him. "He raised me, mostly— though we didn't always live in the same city. Sometimes I didn't see him for a long time, but when I did… Well, he taught me a lot." Even if she hides many emotions, she feels admiration for their dad. She can't be anymore than eighteen, so one would imagine she was quite young the last time she saw him.

Until one figures in time travel.

Warren shakes his head, standing up straight so he can return to his edge of the desc, listening. "So, if he raised you… what were you like?" this is asked with an intense amount of curiosity, since, well… it's his father too.

"He's very… calculating," Valerie says, looking around the room as if trying to find something. "He used to teach me chess, but I always liked checkers more— and he always always had plans. But I know he cared about me, and I bet he cared about both of you, too. I hope one day he wakes up, and you can know him." And she'd like to know him, too. "Kaylee doesn't really like him, even if she hasn't met him. Sometimes his plans… whatever they are… come off as… cruel. But they are always a plan. Somehow."

"I play chess too! I have a memory of being in the chess club, but it's probably false. Still… I do have the skill, so there must be something to it." Warren smiles, standing up straight and looking down at her, slipping his hands into his pockets. "I have a lot of work to do today, so you should probably get going. But I want you to come back here whenever you want, alright? I really want to get to know you."

"Probably not all lies— best lies come from truths, right?" Valerie states, as if trying to make him feel better about his odd past. "And I can visit for an hour a day, at least," she adds with a beaming smile, making an odd hugging gesture with her arms, as if trying to hug herself, or perhaps him since she can't actually do so physically. Not yet.

"And once I know where we can meet in person, I'll let you know. Good luck with the inventions," she adds, pointing toward what he was working on, before she suddenly sinks into the floor until the last thing he sees is the top of the head he tried to pat first. And then that's gone too.

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