Title: Come Again Another Day
Vector - October 27, 2011 02:58 AM (GMT)
Bus station in the rain. Because where else was Daniel going to go? Living under the stars in Metro City was pleasant as hell except when the weather got like this. He shrugged inwardly.
The rain was actually a clue. Rain didn't factor into any of the stories he'd heard about his next task, the one for which he'd gone to the drugstore and gotten some Pedialyte. Dehydration was one of the problems Veronica Temin was supposed to have, and he could help with that. And then they'd accept him as one of their own. It was all very well-thought-out, except for the part where he was operating on speculation and thirty-odd-year-old stories he half remembered.
The past wasn't so bad. He didn't know what he'd been expecting. A cleaner city than this one, perhaps. It did surprise him what the people of the era spent time on and what they didn't, because cleaning up their city for future generations didn't rank as highly as watching television. They were worth saving, though. He wouldn't have gone back in time if he thought it would be otherwise, even disregarding that the Metro City of his time wasn't a place to raise children that wouldn't survive the weapons of their mercurial alien overlords.
Munin - October 27, 2011 03:04 AM (GMT)
Once, Madeline had enjoyed the rain. She would sit at the edge of her bed watching the drops hit her window. But that was when she lived in the apartment. Now, she knew the rain meant her nothing but harm. It made her cold and heavy and made things wet and unsafe. She stepped under the roof covering the bus stop and shook her long, tangled mess of black hair like a dog.
Too late, she realized there was another man in there.
Vector - October 27, 2011 03:07 AM (GMT)
Daniel shrugged. "In here or out there, it's the same stuff."
He stared out at it and sighed and said nothing else.
Munin - October 27, 2011 03:10 AM (GMT)
"Oh." She said, like she understood. But she didn't, really. He was supposed to be mad. Other people would be mad. This guy was weird. But that was okay. Weird people had the best memories to take for defense.
She watched him staring out of the little box.
"What are you looking for?"
Vector - October 27, 2011 03:12 AM (GMT)
Daniel glanced over. "Some hint that it's letting up, I guess. I didn't get to catch the weather report or anything today, but the way the sky looked, I'd be surprised if the rain went like this all day."
Munin - October 27, 2011 03:25 AM (GMT)
"Oh." She sat down on the bus bench and put her hands in her lap as she moved her bare feet back and forth.
"Do you have somewhere to go?"
Vector - October 27, 2011 03:34 AM (GMT)
Daniel breathed in deep and let out a sigh. "Not 'till tomorrow. Tomorrow should be interesting."
Munin - October 27, 2011 03:36 AM (GMT)
"Whyzat?" She asked as she began to try and somewhat tame her hair. She had a hairbrush, once, but it had fallen out of her waistband when she had gotten chased by the policeman in Shady Glades.
Vector - October 27, 2011 03:39 AM (GMT)
"A friend needs some help. I think tomorrow I'll be able to help her."
He gave the kid on the bench a sidelong glance and wondered if she was one of people who would die in the invasion without his intervention. What was a little girl doing here with no shoes, anyway?
Munin - October 27, 2011 03:41 AM (GMT)
"Oh." She said. She continued to mess with her hair and wasn't sure what else to say.
Vector - October 27, 2011 03:42 AM (GMT)
He glanced over. "How about you, where are you headed? Back to your parents?"
Of course not. That's why she didn't have shoes.
Munin - October 27, 2011 03:43 AM (GMT)
She shook her head softly. "I'll probably stay here until morning, then I wanted to go up near the big fountain downtown."
Vector - October 27, 2011 03:47 AM (GMT)
Ah. Of course.
Vector nodded. "The fountain downtown is good. I like the fountain."
Was it his place to get involved? He didn't want undue scrutiny placed on him, after all. He had too much to do to get wrapped up in this. On a cosmic level, that is - not that particular afternoon.
"So do you just watch yourself?" Yes, Daniel. Assuage your own guilt or make it ten times worse. Don't leave yourself an out. Idiot.
Munin - October 27, 2011 03:49 AM (GMT)
"I have some friends." She shrugged. "I don't need anybody else."
Vector - October 27, 2011 03:54 AM (GMT)
"That's what I have, too."
Oh, no, Daniel. Don't do this, a voice in his head said. His better nature? Maybe.
"I can be your friend, too. I'm Daniel."
You dumb motherfucker. Don't get involved in this.
Munin - October 27, 2011 03:58 AM (GMT)
She shrugged her shoulders. "I'm Madeline and I don't need help and if you tell the pigs I will cut you." She nodded her head softly.
Vector - October 27, 2011 04:01 AM (GMT)
Daniel laughed. "I'm not afraid of you cutting me. I've been cut by worse. Way worse."
He adjusted the way his sweatshirt was covering the carapace growths on his chest. He was getting a little better at hiding them, but they were still noticeable. They were most uncomfortable when he was trying to pass as the most normal, too.
Munin - October 27, 2011 04:07 AM (GMT)
"That's just was Geoff told me to say." She sighed. "I don't even have a blade."
Vector - October 27, 2011 04:14 AM (GMT)
Vector laughed. "Don't get a blade until you know how to use it, or you'll just embarrass yourself and someone else will get to say 'Hey, free blade.'"
Munin - October 27, 2011 04:20 AM (GMT)
She wrinkled her brow. "That doesn't even make sense. I can't learn to use one without one. And Geoff would teach me." She said, but once it left her mouth, she wasn't positive.
Vector - October 27, 2011 04:25 AM (GMT)
"Well, keep that Geoff guy close when you're starting out, is my advice, then. And hold it by the side that isn't sharp, I guess. Goes without saying."
Munin - October 27, 2011 04:27 AM (GMT)
She nodded, then looked down at her lap. "Would you get me one?"
Vector - October 27, 2011 04:38 AM (GMT)
"Ask your friend Geoff," Daniel said. "I'm not gonna be responsible for a young girl with a knife. What are you, fourteen?"
Munin - October 27, 2011 04:43 AM (GMT)
She shook her head. "I turn twelve next month. And that's not even that young."
Vector - October 27, 2011 04:45 AM (GMT)
He shrugged. "You're not in the jungle, hunting for food. An adult will protect you better than a knife."
Munin - October 27, 2011 04:47 AM (GMT)
"Adults are dangerous. Adults do bad things." She reached out and touched Vector, passing on the memory of struggling with a man trying to pull her into a van.
Vector - October 31, 2011 10:58 PM (GMT)
Daniel wasn't afraid of the girl's touch until he was suddenly assaulted first by the presence in his mind's eye of a memory that wasn't his, and then a beat later by the content of the memory itself. He recovered quickly and shook his head.
"Not every adult would do...that," he told her emphatically. He tried to clear the memory out of his head with his eyes squeezed shut.
"It's a harsh world for a girl on the street. You don't have a home anywhere? Anyone who could take you in?"
Munin - October 31, 2011 11:16 PM (GMT)
"No." She said plainly then added a shrug for emphasis. "I don't need a home. It's just a building. There are lots of buildings."
Vector - November 2, 2011 04:35 PM (GMT)
"It's not about the building," said Daniel, who'd lived in a few. "It's about the people who are there. And staying safe behind a locked door is always a perk."
Munin - November 2, 2011 07:29 PM (GMT)
She shrugged. "Maybe for you. I don't need a stupid lock."
Vector - November 5, 2011 05:20 PM (GMT)
Daniel shrugged. "You need your eight hours. Especially if you're psychic. It's nice not to have to worry about it. Not that I'm in that position, either."
Munin - November 10, 2011 12:31 PM (GMT)
She shrugged her shoulders. "I get by fine."
Vector - November 13, 2011 12:01 AM (GMT)
Vector nodded. "What else do you do? Besides...was that a memory, or the illusion of one?"
Munin - November 13, 2011 12:17 AM (GMT)
"It was a memory." She said. Then, a small mug started floating in front of her. "I can do this too."
Vector - November 16, 2011 03:17 AM (GMT)
Vector watched it and nodded. "Impressive. What do you use your powers for?"
Munin - November 16, 2011 05:26 PM (GMT)
She shrugged her shoulders. "Survival."
Vector - November 17, 2011 01:57 AM (GMT)
"You can do a lot better than survival with that," Daniel noted, shifting on the bench so he was more comfortable. "If you work on your strength, I bet you can make a pretty good living. Won't have to beg, you know?" He looked pointedly at the girl's mug.
Munin - November 17, 2011 02:24 AM (GMT)
"I'm plenty strong! But.." Madeline sighed and looked down. "I don't want to take anything someone would miss."
Vector - November 17, 2011 02:39 AM (GMT)
Daniel laughed. "That's not what I meant. You have a gift - more than one, actually - that you could use to help people. What if you used your telekinesis to move dangerous things?"
Munin - November 17, 2011 03:19 AM (GMT)
She considered that for a moment. "They aren't my problem." She said, finally.