|Scene Title||Books of Fate - Torchwood Regroups|
|Synopsis||Following the brouhaha at the library, members of the Torchwood group regather back at the hub to mull over what was learned and what they didn't figure out. David the Gnome makes a special appearance.|
The door from the alley opens into a small room or short hallway in this brownstone. At the far end is an antiquated lift that looks like a birdcage, complete with manual levers for operation. Dispite its age, the mechanism appears to be well cared for.
At the bottom, the lift opens into some sort of antechamber from one corner of the room. Before the open cage door is a plain, unornamented wall of what appears to be granite with a thick wooden door set inside it. Engraved above the door archway is "Special Immigration Office: East"
Access is only granted with the proper key. Once opened, the granite door swings inward as a computerized neutral voice intones, "Provisional Access Granted. Containment and Research are currently under lock down. Efforts to penetrate secure doors will be discouraged." Through the doorway, there's a large console in the middle of the chamber with a three dimensional display of the New York City atop it. The holographic display is a fairly complete representation of New York City and it's environs. Mostly there is a very simplistic representation of structures, although the map does have a few colored markers. Numbers and figures at times scroll past, apparently having meaning to someone. Computer workstations hug the walls, along with filing cabinets and desks. Several cots and assorted supplies are pushed into out of the way corners as well, with the idea of long stays. The room is some sort of think-tank, apparently. The only other unlocked door leads to a small kitchen and dining area, which are well-stocked.
Later at night, once Rufus has driven Vette home from the little adventure in the library, the first thing he does is go into the kitchen. He puts on the kettle, but he can't wait for the tea water to get hot before he has a drink. He has to have a drink /right now./ He brings out the whiskey bottle, hands shaking with another welling of emotion, and he pours himself a shot to gulp, soon followed by a second.
Vette watches him in silence. She steeples her fingers and taps them lightly against her mouth, once, twice, three times. She is there, but she gives her presence rather than a bunch of questions. He will tell her when he's ready.
After the second shot, he starts to pour a third, but he stops himself. Getting drunk again won't solve his problems. "In that book," Rufus bluntly states, "I saw my Fate. I read my future, I /saw/ my future. If it's true, Vette, and if it isn't some sort of twisted lie, then I have six months to live. I'm going to die when a Nemean Bull rampages through New Atlantis, and I will be a mortal at the time. I will be taken to Valhalla, and Mistr will be my valkyrie. I'm… I'm Fated to have a child with her. A son, one who will be lauded amongst the Aesir. We are going to have a child as well, Vette, you and I. One who will grow to distrust both the Aesir and the Dodekatheon, who will be killed by my other son. I will be an einherjar for Haldor, and upon some great military victory, I will be raised to As of the Status Quo. And I will die in Ragnarok."
"Pour me one of those," Vette says, after a very long moment of silence where she doesn't seem to react at all. "I think I could use one, myself." She could use a big sword to go cut that whore's head off with, that's what she could use.
He does pour a second glass and he offers it up to the lady in silence, watching her grimly. "I'm sorry," Rufus murmurs. "I can't… I can't believe I could possibly do something like that to you. I thought I was a better man. I don't know why I would have done it, but I'm sorry. I am determined to break this Fate, Vette. I do not want to die a mortal man, and I do not want to hurt you."
"You cannot apologize for something you have not done yet," Vette says, as she tosses down the drink, which burns as much as the jealousy and worry in her blood does. "I'm more concerned about the whole six months to live in any case." She can keep part of it from happening herself, at least. She knows exactly how she can. Ironically, it's the stupid heroic blaze of glory crap. She pours a second shot so she can wash away the despairing feeling that there's just no point to any of this nonsense. It's nothing but pain.
Dee lagged behind the others. Not too far behind, though. Behind enough to snag another bottle of whiskey, just in case. She gets there then, and follows to the kitchen. "Okay, then. Shitty day. But we have to plan. We still have the Indian Ocean thing to do." She's not dwelling, but again it's not about her life. It's easier to distance.
He steps forward and rests his hand on her forearm, whispering softly, "It could be a lie. It could be another test, a reflection of that which is our darkest fears." Rufus' fingers tighten, and then he exhales a breath and looks up at Dee, eyes solemn. "Yes, we do."
"I'm sick of tests," Vette growls. "I'm sick of these sick puppetmasters playing sick little games with our lives. I'm sick of all of it. It's like we're the universe's happy shit cans. I almost could give a rat's ass about the Indian Ocean, too, but I suppose it's as good a thing to do as any. If we're not /in/ Atlantis then you can't die in Atlantis."
Dee says "Nothing's written in stone until it happens, Vette. It might be what's written in the book is a warning about what could happen. We can either treat it as something to dread, or something to change."
"We can still have a happy ending," Rufus whispers, rubbing his fingers over Vette's wrists. He sucks in a slow breath and exhales it, trying to keep himself calm, and when Dee speaks, he nods his head. "She's right, you know. It could be that it's just a warning, something we have to beware and be prepared for. We can take steps to prevent some of it."
"Yes. We all have choices," Vette says. "I see what I can prevent, and I see how. I just worry, I suppose, because of that old little fable about Oedipus Rex. In trying to avoid his fate, he brought it about. I think if that happens I'll simply make out a device that burns out my emotional centers. Would you both like one too? At least if we all have to go through grief and horror we won't care very much. We will simply logically process it and handle it. But. I'd had a thought to run some tests on this book to figure out what's what with it." Was she joking? Maybe, maybe not.
Dee thinks about that for a moment. "I have an emotional center?" she asks Vette, then grins. "Anyway, what gets people like us killed is playing it safe out of fear. And even if we do die, we know it isn't about heaven or hell anymore. It's about Valhalla and the Eleusian Fields, if we've lived right. And Vette," she adds with a sly look "If anyone can get us snuck out of the underworld, it's me, right?" She winks.
Rufus stares at Vette for a moment or two, and slowly he pulls back his hand from her. This man has no sense of humour, especially not now, and he's looking at the redhead like he's not entirely too sure about her sanity. "What sort of tests were you thinking of running?" he quietly asks, deciding that focusing on work is best.
Vette cracks a half smile at Dee, but she refocuses on work as well. "I thought we could perhaps run it through the Torchwood equipment to do a thorough analysis on the type of magic. Determine whether it's prophetic at all. If it's illusion magic, for example, and not prophetic magic, well, then that answers that."
Dee says "We could do that, sure. But then what if it does turn out to be prophetic? That'll just drag you down more. I say fuck the book. We lock it up, to keep it from causing more problems, then get on with the others. What was that Hikaru said? There's more of them? And there's the Atlantis library. That's more important."
"Fate and my family don't get on very well," Rufus quietly states, fixing his eyes on Vette, staring at her still. "I don't know that I want to know if that book is illusion or prophetic, but there's something more to this business that has yet to be figured out. Hikaru's right. /Hera/ herself was down there, and we were all gathered together, and this wasn't a coincidence. Something about these books is important enough that the Queen of the Dodekatheon decided to get involved, even if subtly. This is big."
Vette rubs at her temples, trying and failing to /think/ past the emotional haze that's assaulting her right now. Epic intelligence or not, it's hard to think through an increasing depression, jealousy, rage, and ennui. "Something to do with the Dark Hour," she agrees. "I wonder if we shouldn't figure out who all those roles were. But I think out of us three only I've walked into that funhouse. I didn't see your statue in there, Dee."
Dee hms. "What funhouse is that?" she asks. Apparently, she's missed that ride.
"The Dark Hour in Times Square," Rufus quietly answers. "Vette was able to enter it and met the little Titan girl Mary there, who showed her some… aspects of herself and gave her a test of mental strength." He slides his hands into his pockets, tilting back his head. "We should go and meet with Hikaru in Central Park to discuss this. He… she? seemed to be on the verge of figuring out the issue. We should help her with it."
Dee ohhhhs. She makes a face. "I was in there once, but it was last year. Had to fight a doppleganger of myself, along with a few others. Was a pain in the ass." She nods to the mention of Hikaru, then. "We can do that. And I think Hikaru goes back and forth, on the gender. I'd seen him as a girl before."
"That's got to be confusing," Vette says lightly, in reference to Hikaru's gender. "Well, when do we meet with him?"
His eyebrow arches, but he decides not to say anything about the gender-swapping bloke. Just…. ohhkaaaay, mate. Whatever. "Tomorrow, I believe," he quietly murmurs. "Though we have his number, don't we? If it's another time, I'm sure we'll hear about it. He wanted to spend an evening praying over the matter. We could probably all do with rehashing the information we gathered and trying to come up with our own solutions."
Dee nods to Rufus "We do. I need to transcript everything she said, so we can go over it carefully. Lemme go do that now, actually." she says, leaving the bottle on the table. "I'll be back in a bit."
"Good idea. I left my notes at the library," Vette says ruefully. She pours another shot of that whiskey and drains it down. It's going to take more than 4 shots to get her drunk. More like 14, and that's just to get a good starting buzz.
While the lady goes off to get a transcript of that lecture, Rufus watches Dee go, then he turns his eyes back to Vette. "What would you do if all that I saw comes to pass?" he quietly asks. "Would you be able to forgive me?"
Vette pours a fifth shot of whiskey. "Yes, Rufus," she says. "I would forgive you. Fate has dealt you nothing but a nasty hand in the past. You've got to cope the best way you can. I will make sure that no child of mine ever comes to kill the paragon baby, or leads to the downfall of two pantheons. I am not such a villain that I would want the pantheons destroyed for my grief." That shot goes down, and the sixth chases it. "I'm not that bad, yet. I will mourn your loss, should this come to pass, and then I will make sure to—stay out of the way." She looks up at him dully. "I'd rather you be happy than miserable. If it comes to pass, be happy with her, and the Aesir. She's not really that bad, not really. I'll be sorry it wasn't me, but she's not that bad."
Right now, Dee, Rufus and Vette have gone back to the hub. They're not really drinking whiskey at the library. Honest!
Rufus reaches out his hand to stop Vetet from having any more than six shots, pulling the bottle back and away with his other hand. "I don't want her," he says firmly, quietly. "I have chosen you, and I have given my loyalty to you, Vette. I have asked /you/ to marry me." He falls quiet for a moment, then he shakes his head. "There… has to be a way to break this. There must be. Just one glimpse of my future cannot possibly mean it will all come to pass and I am doomed now. I mean… bloody Hell. All it will take to prevent a son with Mistr is to simply refuse to lie with her. That is all. I can do /that/ much." Unnnnnnless someone used some supernatural power on him, and he can't resist, but that's a road he does /not/ want to think about.
"She might just throw you down andor Odin might justsomeone might just /make you/, Rufus." Vette says, looking longingly after that whiskey. She really, really wanted to get drunk. Very drunk. "Maybe I'm just not worthy of you. Maybe that's why fate doesn't want us together. Maybe that's why mine is the bad kid and Mistr's is the good kid. Not that I'm ready to give you up. I don't ever want to give you up. But maybe I don't deserve you. You heard Dee and Hikaru, ready to nobly be destroyed and cast into torment for the sake of others. That's not me. I'll risk myself. I'll fight. I want to protect people. But deep down, I am selfish enough to want what I want too. Maybe I fail the nobility and righteousness test." She rests her head against him, closing her eyes. "How /does/ one break a fate without pulling an Oedipus? Do we have any intel on that?"
He doesn't want to think about that road, and the lady just merrily pushes him right down it, which leaves him looking … a little disgusted at the thought of /ODIN/ of all people forcing him to go shag a valkyrie. Now he reaches for that whiskey bottle, and he pulls a draught straight from it, rather than pouring himself a glass. "I have no idea," he admits. "My family has been trying to break their Fates for a long time, and they still haven't succeeded. Perhaps Dee was right in her suggestion. We don't poke and prod at that book too closely. We set it to one side. Treat it like Shroedinger's cat. Is it illusion? Is it prophecy? That question won't ever be resolved and Fate won't /have/ to answer if we just… never open the lid of the box. If there are other books to find, we should find them, then just shut them away."
Vette nods her head. "This is as good a place to lock it up as any, and I sure don't know what else to do with it. It also begs the question of why the woman who tried to steal it wanted it so badly, or why she tried to set it on fire." Vette seems oblivious to having pushed him down roads he didn't want to go on, but then she often is oblivious. She rubs a hand over her face. Well, he hasn't died to a Nemean bull /today/, and she doesn't have to go hang herself today. They might as well do something productive. "I'll go put it in the safe. When we open up some of the harder access areas we can secure it even better."
"All right," Rufus murmurs. He finally closes up that whiskey bottle and clears his throat, shoving it away into a cabinet before they both get so rip-roaring drunk they can't think straight anymore. "Let's start from the beginning. When Dee comes back with that transcript, we'll read it over, then look for those threads Hikaru had started to find. By the time we go talk with …. her… we might be able to bring something useful to him. Her. It."
"She was always a little gender ambiguous," Vette points out. "She's like Pat from SNL." She goes to lock up the book, placing it in the combination safe.
Smiling rather wryly, Rufus says nothing in answer to that. He pads after the lady as she locks away that book in her safe, falling quiet to watch her. With his thumb he twists around that ring he's wearing, and after a short while, he says, "I'm not sure how he picked up there were more books. I must have missed something in this lecture. I wonder how many there are."
"You know.." and it's a gentle voice as David walks out from seemingly nowhere. He's dusting himself off. He doesn't like being stuffed in various places in the hub. How he got out.. who knows? "That defeatist attitude is precisely why Mistr will win out in the end."
"I don't know. I suppose another thing I could try before I lock this up is to try to get an energy signal that we can track. I might have to build something new for that. If that's something you both think I should try then I will try it," Vette replies. She turns to watch him twist that ring thoughtfully. "Is that a curse that can be passed to someone?" She stares at David for a moment, as if trying to parse. Then she says, "I don't know that I have a defeatest attitude," she says honestly. "If you must know, the problem is I feel so horrible I'm ready to burst from it. It's hard to think like that. But if you have a suggestion, please." As long as he's not kicking crotches, Vette's willing to listen. Besides, the gentle voice caught her attention. She's never heard it talk before.
Dee returns after a while, having copied the lecture from memory into the computer. At least, as much of the lecture as they got. "That was fun." she says in a wry tone as she hands them printouts. "So, what's the plan, folks?" she asks them.
He jerks in startlement, turning on the ball of his foot quickly, but Rufus stops short at the sight of David. Ah, the gnome. He relaxes considerably, though he does eye the little guy and his dusty state of being. Vette is given a look. Did she go and shove him in a cabinet or something? "We ahh…. have company, Dee," he says quietly, gesturing towards David with his hand.
Dee jumps when Rufus does. She completely missed the speaking gnome. "What, huh?" She looks at David, then eyes Rufus. "Okay…"
"Oh woe is me. Oh Scrivner, you can shag Mistr. I will step out of the way.." And that's said mockingly in a high pitched falsetto as David puts his hands over his cheeks before he goes over to kick Rufus in the shin.
"I thought you were going to come in with an idea or some useful advice," Vette says coolly. "Not mockery. If that's the best you can do, save it. I can do as much myself. And stop kicking him. Rufus, give me the ring, if you can. I'll do the mortal thing. You shouldn't have to. He said you had to take the ring. But if someone's going to be punished, I'll do it. I'm the one who screwed up in Asgard, not you. You're the warrior of our party and we need you at full capacity, especially if we're flitting off to various oceans."
"Augh!" Rufus hops back after he's been kicked, staring at David. "What was /that/ for? I didn't even do anything but stand here and say we had company! What the bloody Hell!" He takes another step back, then he turns to stare at Vette as well, pulling back his hand and then shoving it into the pocket of his trousers. "No, Vette. That is not an option."
Dee frowns, then looks at Rufus' ring. "Huh. That's an interesting thought. Sharing the punishment." She looks torn, though. It's interesting, but that's different from offering to take some of that herself. No offense to her Bandmates. "And I think your father's point is that anything you allow in your life, including friends and lovers, is your own fault."
"Be glad I didn't jump to kick you in the crotch that time. That's a stupid idea. It's your punishment. How is sharing the punishment supposed to show to the gods that you are learning to be a capable Aesir?" There's a grumpy David now as he kicks Scrivner in the shin once more before he looks towards Vette. "Oh Scrivner, no, share the punishment with me! Please! It hurts so good!" he squeals in falsetto once more.
Vette stares at all three of them, then takes the transcript from Dee. "I'm going for a walk," she growls. "I need to get out of here. I can't stay here with that thing. And if it's my fault he's kicking Rufus, I'd better leave until he goes back to his closet. Worst guide ever." She turns to go.
"Augh!" Rufus yelps again, taking another step back. "I didn't say she should! I wouldn't pass off my punishment to her like I was some sort of coward! Bloody Hell. I'm not /that/ hopeless! Vette, don't go! Bloody Hell, he's tiny. It's not /that/ big of a deal. Don't go."
"He's got a point, Rufus. Gods don't share the load. Or support each other. They're pretty much just out for themselves." Dee notes. "Which might be why they're in so much trouble now. They're having to face people who can work together, and they're going to get their asses kicked for it."
"Oh shut up, no one asked for your opinion. You know nothing of the gods. They're keeping the world safe from constant Titanspawn attacks. You think the measly spawn you face every now and then is hard?" David replies as he looks towards Dee before he kicks Scrivner one more time for good measure. It's good stress relief for the little gnome once more. "I'm going to find a fox to ride or something.." and he departs.
Vette stays, though she watches David go with a look of pure animosity on her face. "He's evil," she growls tightly. "That thing /is/ a freaking titanspawn. It's like nobody taught it or anybody else up there basic etiquette and consideration for people's feelings."
Dee watches David, not saying anything more until it's gone. "What a ray of sunshine, huh?" she says. "Like I don't know what the gods do is a lot harder than what we do. I just think it would be easier for them if they weren't so busy screwing with each other and with you guys."
Before David truly disappears, he yells, "Your dad is a Titanspawn!" and woosh, he's gone.
This time he hops on his leg, curling the kicked one back. "Augh!" Scrivner backs off to let the gnome go, and throwing up his hands in frustration, he loses his temper enough to bellow, "Bloody fucking Hell!" He drops his hands to his sides and sighs, and he gives the women a rather tired stare. "Well, in the midst of all of that… /I/ got that you shouldn't give up, Yvette. No, you cannot take my punishment. It's mine to bear. But we can't give up, we can't simply roll over, and we can't simply let Fate make us into its bitches. We must never give up and never stop striving to get what we want."
Dee rolls her eyes. "In the grand scheme, we're all Titanspawn." she notes, nonplussed, then nods to Rufus. "We can't give up. If nothing else, you can't give them the satisfaction."
"I'm not giving up," Vette says briskly. Killing herself so she doesn't give birth to the anti-Christ there isn't giving up, it's simply chosing to write that part out of the story. "Let's have a look at these transcripts."
He opens his mouth to say something to the redheaded lady, but Rufus scowls and closes it again. "This isn't over," he says quietly, firmly. But for now, he'll let it drop. Instead, he turns to Dee, and he inclines his head to her. "Let's take a look at the transcripts and see what we missed the first time around, shall we?"
Dee mmhmms as she hands off the copies and keeps one for herself. "Let's." she replies then goes to have a seat and put up her feet.
"Ok, so we start with mythic reverberation," Vette says. "I'm not sure who this Creator is though. Aren't there /lots/ of gods?"
"Who holds sway over the gods, though?" Rufus counters, as he takes a transcript and settles down on a couch not far from the ladies. "The gods are subject to Fate, aren't they?" He starts flipping through the pages, reading through the lecture again.
Dee offers "Well, when she said the part about the rulers being reflected in the people and land, it made me wonder if that's some of what happened to Atlantis. They got a little drunk with power, and things decayed because of that."
Vette clasps her fingers together and drops her chin on top of them. "By rights, given how awful a person Melanope is, this place should be worse than New York City ever was though, and other than the occasional murder and disgusting experiement, the place seems pretty healthy. Clean, modern, sleek…a technological and intellectual marvel."
Dee smiles. "Well, that kind of thing can't be immediate. It would be over the course of years, not weeks or months." she replies to Vette.
Rufus glances aside at Vette a moment, then arches an eyebrow. "I don't know. New Atlantis strikes me as a little on the 1984 side," he quietly remarks. "Clean and shining on the surface, but very disturbing when you take a closer look. At any rate…" He goes flipping back through the pages, and he leans forward to grab a pen off of a coffee table and start circling passages. "From what I gather in this reading, she is saying that Fate, gods and humanity are all connected. Humans affect the outerworld just as the mythical world influenced humanity. And she goes on to say that one person /can/ make a difference. By entering the personal psyche, by entering the Dark Hour, by being challenged by failures, one is marked and changed forever after."
"I'm not seeing any difference that I've made by doing Dark Hour though," Vette says, shaking her head. "There's been no change whatsoever for my going in there. Not in anything other than me." And given her current mood even she has to wonder how well the change stuck. "I don't see any influence at all, so how can that be?"
Dee nods to Rufus "It's very Star Wars. Everything being connected, I mean. It's true, though." She studies Vette, then says "Again, change happens over time. It's not immediate. It's the whole butterfly in South America, and hurricane in China thing. You're thinking too short-term."
Rufus holds up a finger and glances at Vette, then he takes his pen to continue circling passages. "You give up hope too easily, Vette. Remember what you faced in the Dark Hour and think on how you can apply those lessons to these situations we're facing together. It seems to me that first and foremost, you need to conquer what's going on in your head, overcome yourself, and you'll find more clarity in trying to deal with this. And… let's see here. The lady continues on by saying we must seek wholeness without hesitation, that we must begin this journey… a quest, perhaps? And there is a guiding being who guides the life and destiny of a child. Then she goes on about fools' tales. I think she was growing rather frustrated with us at that point, because that's right around the time the Scions attempted to nick your book." He then looks up from the transcripts, scowling.
"I suppose that counts somewhat as a course of action," Vette says. "It's very esoteric though. Very fluffy. It would be better if I could just build something or fight something or do something concrete to accomplish things and change situations. All of this…psychological…hoo hoo…" she waves her hands around. "She also named those 7 roles."
"Yes, but this was all about allegory." Dee replies. "I'm not sure how literal we can be. Some, sure. Some of what I get from what she said was something I said about that book. We can't doubt. We have to go forward and be what we are. If everything's connected, then we make the world stronger by being strong and certain. Of course, that includes every part of the world. God and Titan alike. They are the basic forces of the world, after all. Unless our actions, which are directed by reason rather than instinct, fall outside those natural forces."
Dee adds "Or, I could be talking out of my ass."
"What confuses me is how this all connects to that book we rescued," Rufus says quietly. "It seems to me that she is saying we must all go to the Dark Hour to be marked and prepared for what is to come. I'm still not sure I see where Hikaru knew there were several Books of Fate. And looking back through these notes, Vette, I'm seeing /nine/ now. She said to the yearning but timid, the uncertain, the jaded, the hesitant, the dawdlers, the postponers, the fakers, the foolish, and the wise. How many of us were there last night?"
"Nine, if you count Hera, and the girl who tried to steal the book. Wait—I don't know how many followers were with her," Vette says, crossing her eyes as she tries to figure it out. They make the world stronger by being strong and certain? "I think we make the world stronger by kicking bad guy ass out of our sphere of influence. I still don't get why what I'm thinking about while I do it matters."
Dee says "There were six of them." Then, she shrugs. "It's all pretty deep. Do I have to go do that Dark Hour thing, then? Sounds like it sucks." She doesn't look in any rush to go in there for it.
"Wait," Vette says, reading futher down the transcript. "The story begins with a group of brothers who were told by their father, the King, that whosoever could bring back to him the golden ttreasure of "what has great price and yet is priceless," should inherit his kingdom. Two of the brothers rush off with their maps and plans and scehemes in hand. They are certain, they will reach the goal first…
But the third brother is portrayed as a fool. He throws a feather nup into the air, where it is taken up by the wind. He follows in the direction the feather leads him. His brothers jeer athim and say he will never learn and never be successful. Afterall, he is only a fool and fools inherit nothing but more foolishness until the end of their days.." Vette taps her finger to the paper. "She didn't finish this, but in faerie tales it's /always/ that foolis third son who gets the girl."
Dee nods. "It is, yes." she agrees. "The one that planned less and followed… whatever the feather equates to. His heart. Or soul. The one that went out and trusted to Fate."
"Well. Fate obviously can't be trusted," Vette laughs. "Rufus' vision proves that. Fate brings misery. In fact the very next thing we do is saw that the feather is going to just slice you into ribbons, spit you out, and destroy you out of spite to no particular purpose. So how can that be right?'
Dee says "I don't believe that Fate has it in for anyone, Vette. Fate is just… Fate. I don't think there's an active bias there. Again, just focus on the job. It's like any of the jobs I've pulled." Though she glances then At Rufus. She's sure he loves hearing about what she does. "You can focus on what can go wrong and let it eat at you, or you can be in the moment and do the job. We have to stay in the moment. Figuratively speaking."
Having listened to Vette, the man wryly smiles. "The hesitant, the dawdlers, the postponers… Well, I am going into the Dark Hour," he quietly declares. He tosses down his pen and the transcripts. "It seems to me that this is what must be done. I have yet to go, I have yet to prove myself. If Mary is there, perhaps she can give some guidance."
"Maybe the feather is the moment then," Vette says. She nods to Rufus. "You'd already thought about going, and it seems like it is a valid next step. But please be careful."
Dee makes a face. "I'm going to have to go in there, aren't I?" She looks less worried than inconvenienced. "Damned pain in the ass." she grumbles.
"Come now, Miss Floros. Where's your spirit of adventure?" Rufus inquires with a wry smile. He lurches forward and goes walking back towards the kitchen. "Anyone fancy a cup of tea?"
"Yeah, tea would be good," Vette says. She barks a laugh. "Careful, Dee. The thing in there ridiculed me quite a bit for thinking things were a pain in the ass."
Dee smirks at Rufus. "I have plenty of spirit of adventure." she says to him. "And even if ridiculed, a pain in the ass is still a pain in the ass. Tea would be great, though. With a whiskey chaser."
Into the kitchen he goes, finding that he'd already put a kettle on ages ago, but… now it's mostly boiled away. "Bloody Hell," he grumbles, pulling the pot back off to refill with water. From there he calls back, "We should still meet with Hikaru and talk to him. Her. He-She may have more insight to what Hera was trying to tell us. Hikaru said there were six other books, but I've no idea where he came up with the number six. I've a feeling we're still missing something here."
"He probably had his own information from before last night," Vette calls back. "It's the first time we've seen her since Japan isn't it? Who knows what he's been getting up to."
Dee chuckles again, and calls back to him. "Just use the feminine pronouns, while she's looking female. It'll save time. And I'm sure we're missing things. Hopefully, between us all we'll have everything we need."
"Mmmf." While the new pot of water gets to boiling, Rufus comes wandering back out to the living room and drops a packet of chocolate biscuits on the coffee table. He takes one for himself, and sitting back down, he stretches out his legs. "Now this business regarding the Indian Ocean… I must admit to having no idea how to plan for an undersea adventure. Do either of you?"
Vette takes the chocolate biscuit and nibbles on it. "Follow the feather," she says with a shrug. "Let's go out there, see what resources present themselves. Rent a submersive if nothing interesting does."
Dee also takes a chocolate biscuit. "Yeah, I have no idea, either. I do remember meeting someone who seemed waterish, but that was months ago. We'll ask the others? Maybe one of them will know someone. Or, you know…" and her voice raises a little "maybe one of those gods who are so fascinated by what we're doing and want us to beat the Atlanteans there will leave a Relic laying around that just happens to help us function underwater." She obviously doesn't expect it, but it had to at elast be said.
"You know," Rufus quietly but drily says, "it occurs to me that in myths and legends, the heroes made sacrifices to the gods and curried their favour in order to get their help. Trying to be cheeky…" He holds up his hand in demonstration. "… gets you grounded." Then he smirks.
Dee grins at Rufus, and winks at him. "I can only be what I am. Not that I won't sacrifice. And we still need to do something to apologize to Hera for the disturbance."
"How is the disturbance /our/ fault?" Vette complains. "Bitch was the one who took off with the book in my stack. Shouldn't she be the one groveling to Hera?"
Dee shakes her head. "Fault does not matter, Vette." she says. "Just that it happened, and technically I started it rather than let them take off with the book."
Vette mutters something about 'unreasonable' and 'demeaning' and 'dishes' as she clears everything away to go take her turn at the dishes.
Vette has disconnected.
Rufus draws in a deeeeep, deep breath and rubs his hands over his face. "I will let you handle Hera," he says, quietly. "If I remind her that I exist, she might take offense, given what I'm trying to do with Vette."
Dee thinks about that. "Rufus, she could do a hell of alot worse for a grandson-in-law than you. But I'll handle it." She thinks, then says "You know, if I'm guidish through my father, I should find a way to guide through the water safely, too. Like I can bring people through a solid wall. I don't know if it's possible, but maybe I'll look into it some as time allows."
"Any little bit can help. If this goes deep under the water, we will be stuck in a submersible. There's only so much pressure our bodies can take before we implode," Rufus says, having no answer about that grandson-in-law thing. "I know I for one cannot handle that much crushing pressure. Not yet, anyway. In time, perhaps." He steeples his fingertips and taps them together. "At any rate… One thing at a time."
Dee nods agreement. "One thing at a time. We'll get there, Rufus. Somehow." She chews on a biscuit, glancing over the transcript again. "What did you think of the other one. Baldur's, who we didn't know."
"Andrew? He seemed an all right sort to me," Rufus says in answer, blinking. "Rather green at the game, but we're not all that much more experienced, despite our demigodhood. That other one… Josh Syx. He strikes me as… ahh… well, he's a very good combatant. I'd met him once before on the subway. But the man strikes me as something of a poser, to be honest. More concerned with his mortal career and fame than his duty as a Scion."
Dee nods. "Yeah. He hasn't learned yet, that there's no ducking Fate. He will, eventually." she replies. "Might be good to help cultivate Andrew some, though. Really, we should be doing that with a lot of the new ones. Helping shove them out of the nest and the like."
"Before we're sent into the Overworlds for the majority of eternity," Rufus muses. "I agree." He takes up another biscuit, breaking it in half before munching on a piece. "When I was their age…" He smirks a bit at that. "… I could really have used a guide of some sort, and I don't mean the shin-kicking variety."
Dee mms. "I was lucky. "My mother helped prepare me. Sort of. At least, she taught me my trade well, if not the whole hero business. Of course, I got into that kind of late for one of us. Stayed out of it. Not good, but I'm trying to make up for the lost time."
Munch munch munch goes the second biscuit. Rufus brushes crumbs from his fingers and leans to one side to get a glimpse of Vette working in the kitchen. "We all have a ways to go," he says with a shrug. "At any rate. I do believe I am going to go and catch up on some reading before the sun rises and I collapse into sleep." He stands up slowly, looking about. "Unless there's anything else you need me for, my dear?"
Dee shakes her head. "I'm good." she says. "Get some rest. We'll get moving again in the morning."
The man wryly smiles as he passes the lady, patting her on the shoulder as he goes. Just a quick stop into the kitchen to tell Vette where he'll be, then off he goes to read for awhile.
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