boneshaker: (yeah whatever)
Castor el-Saeid ([personal profile] boneshaker) wrote in [community profile] bigapplesauce2016-02-26 07:59 pm

don't believe everything that you breathe [open]

A young man stands by the fountain at Bethesda Terrace and smokes a cigarette. He has only just arrived, appearing several feet off the ground and falling flat on his back with a pronounced yelp. Apparently, one harried passerby tells him, this kind of thing happens all the time. Apparently there's a whole community of 'people like you'. He refuses to stick around and provide any more salient details.

Castor blows smoke into the crisp autumnal air. He's not entirely certain what to make of his predicament, except that it has saved him the trouble of the backalley scrap he'd just gotten himself into, so that's something.

Whatever city this is--New York? Chicago?--it's clean. Well, cleaner. Well, this bit is. And on top of that it's a park. Parks are the sort of luxury not afforded to his kind back home. That might be a good thing. It might also be a problem. Well, probably not a big problem. He's never far from garbage. Not really.

He finishes his cigarette and flicks it to the ground, crushing it gently under his shoe and absorbing the energy back from it. Cigarette butts are everywhere. There's not much life in them but he can make do. Every bit counts. He stuffs his hands deep into his coat pockets and pivots on his heel, studying his surroundings. What's he supposed to do here, wait around until someone comes to pick him up? Wander and hope he runs into somebody he can talk to? It's not a great plan, but he doesn't have another one. It occurs to him he might be in shock.

Whatever. Be like a shark. Keep moving.

As he wanders through the startling greenery, he casts his awareness about idly, trying to feel... something he can relate to. This is not an exact science. It's linguistics, and the vowels shift every damn day. He adjusts the parameters in his head. A weak excuse for a thought experiment: let's say this new place is a dumpster, and you've been discarded from your previous dumpster and tossed into this one. And let's say there are others like you. So find them.

Ridiculously, it works. As he moves through the park, there is some vague sensation of familiarity tugging him in an increasingly focused direction. It says 'this thing is in the same language group as you'. This thing is a person. He walks up to it. Them. "Hi," he says with a friendly grin. "This, uh, this might be a weird question, but when you came here did you do it by like... appearing out of thin air?"
james_t: (hay)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-02-27 06:04 am (UTC)(link)
Kirk, outfitted with a brand new jacket and cozy flannel shirt, has made his way back to the library to return his books. He thinks that an electronics store should be next on his list, now that he has a little bit of money, but a little stroll through the park won't be too much of a detour. It's something of a novelty to be able to walk through a park like this one, and on Earth.

When the man approaches him with his question, he frowns down at his brand new plaid shirt. Maybe he hadn't picked something as contemporary as he thought he had. "Is it that obvious?"
james_t: (<3)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-02-27 11:42 pm (UTC)(link)
"Oh, yes! Absolutely. I'm only new to this myself, but there are plenty of resources available." He shakes Castor's hand happily. "Jim Kirk. Nice to meet you, Castor." He turns around and shoves his hands back into his jacket pockets. "This way. We'll get you a place to stay. And a cellular phone."

When Castor falls into step beside him, he smiles in his direction. "Don't suppose you have a brother named Pollux?"
james_t: (Default)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-02-28 05:36 am (UTC)(link)
Oh, right. Somehow, Kirk had assumed that, like him, Castor would have been introduced to the whole idea of the rift in a group dream long before he'd actually been picked up by it. "Sorry, Castor. I've gotten ahead of myself."

He looks around them briefly, trying to get his bearings. He's been around the park a couple times since he arrived, but it's still a big place. He wants to make sure that he knows where he's going so that he can turn them in the right direction.

"Why don't we sit down and I'll explain the situation to the best of my ability. There's a cafe around the corner. I'll get you something to eat, if you're hungry." Iman, and then The Balladeer and Steven had been very helpful to him in explaining things, but he's sure that someone sitting down and going through his questions one by one would have been even more helpful. Castor looks like he could use a wash, too, but food is probably a good place to start with making him feel less overwhelmed by the whole situation.

As they come within sight of the cafe, he says. "New York City. You're right about that. This is Central Park."
Edited 2016-02-28 05:36 (UTC)
james_t: (hay)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-02-28 09:14 am (UTC)(link)
"Where were you before you arrived here?" For the moment, he's stepping around the issue of both time and interdimensional travel. The man has zippers on his clothes and he seemed to know what a cellular phone is, so he's fairly sure that he's at least from the modern age. Some modern age, anyhow. But that doesn't mean that Castor is familiar with the idea of interdimensional portals.

When they approach the cafe, Kirk pauses in front of the two large boards outside advertising the menu. He hasn't eaten here before, but most of the offerings are more or less familiar to him. He hasn't really gotten used to how money works here (is eight dollars a lot for a sandwich?) but it seems like he has enough money to more than cover whatever he and Castor might want.
Edited 2016-02-28 14:17 (UTC)
james_t: (merp)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-03-04 07:23 am (UTC)(link)
Kirk is assuming that North-Minn means Northern Minnesota, but there's also the possibility that Castor is talking about any other number of other-dimensional places. Maybe Minn isn't an abbreviation at all, and he's leaping to conclusions because the man seems to recognize New York City.

He does seem a little overwhelmed by the options on the menu, which all seem more or less straightforward to Kirk. He nods to his choice. "That will be fine. I have enough money for both of us." He's decided on a cheeseburger himself. He could do with a decent lunch, and it's been a while since his meal card on the Enterprise has involved anything but salad and fish.

There's a small area to sit inside with a couple of plastic tables at the back. Kirk puts in their orders, pays, and is handed a number on a slip of paper and two cups. He looks at both for a moment before asking, "Where do we get our drinks?" The man behind the counter points to a machine at the back near the tables, so he nods Castor in that direction and heads over.

The drinks machine is more cryptic than he had expected. Beyond their brand names, none of the pictures seem to describe what the drink will actually taste like. He can guess that the bright orange one is some sort of orange flavored drink, and the one with a lime drawn on the label is lime-flavored, but the rest are only symbols or inscrutable names in unfamiliar type-faces.

After a moment of indecision, he presses his cup against the little lever under the ICE sign in the middle and then places his cup under the spout of the orange drink dispenser. Nothing happens. He's assuming that because there's not a lever here that it's motion-activated, but it seems he's wrong. He tries once more, but it's still ineffective. Next, he tries holding the number the man gave him against the front of the dispenser, thinking that it might activate it somehow.

It's only then that he notices a small raised area below the logo.

He presses the button and fills up his cup. When he turns back to Castor, he's embarrassed but smiling. "Every day is a new adventure."
Edited 2016-03-04 07:25 (UTC)
james_t: (calling)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-03-08 11:27 am (UTC)(link)
Kirk finds himself a seat opposite Castor and sits down before looking down at his soda. It doesn't look too unusual to him. When he takes a sip it's sweeter than he expects, but not in a bad way. He takes another sip, then sets it aside. Until they receive their food it might be a good idea for him to lay a foundation for Castor about what's happening.

He rests his forearms in on the table and leans forward a fraction. "I'm afraid it's only going to get weirder from here on out." It's been a weird few days for him since he arrived, but it seems like he has more of a head start than Castor does for this particular type of weirdness. "You've been brought to an alternate universe by a rift in time and space."
Edited 2016-03-08 11:28 (UTC)
james_t: (merp)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-04-16 03:09 am (UTC)(link)
"There should be a way back." Kirk eyes his cheeseburger when it arrives, but it can wait until this has been explained properly to Castor. "The path you traveled is theoretically reachable, but as far as I know no one here has yet found a way to open one back up."

"You actually caught me on my way to an electronics store. I was hoping to find something that might boost the signal of my communicator through the rift. If my crew find it, at least they'll know to keep looking." He takes another sip of his drink, actually enjoying it this time now that he's used to the taste. "It might be a long shot, but for the moment it's the only thing I've got." He presses his lips together in a tight line. "I'm sorry I don't have better news."
Edited 2016-04-16 03:09 (UTC)
james_t: (Default)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-07-08 08:11 pm (UTC)(link)
Jim grins fondly, his face losing some of the concern that it had displayed a moment before.

"The Starship Enterprise." Even if it's universe away, his ship is a subject that he has no trouble talking about. He's proud of his ship and his crew, and it shows in how he's a little less tense, his smile a little easier. "I've been her captain for nearly five years."

That settled, he finally takes a bite of his cheeseburger, which is amazing. He hums at the back of his throat and looks back down at the burger in surprise and delight. "It's been a while since I've had anything like this." Partly because space travel doesn't generally allow for fresh meat to be carried around in the cargo bay, but mostly because red meat hasn't been on his diet card for going on a year and a half now.
james_t: (<3)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-07-18 05:06 am (UTC)(link)
"Oh-" He finished up a bite of cheeseburger and then wonders how to answer Castor's question. As far as anyone in his universe is concerned, it would be a straightforward question. But where he's from, the military might function very differently from anything Castor would be familiar with. He'd learned that the hard way himself the first time he slipped into another universe.

"Starfleet is military, though The Enterprise herself is an exploratory vessel. There have been conflicts, but our primary goal is peace and exploration- Finding new life and civilizations." He grins as he reaches for his soda to take a sip. He sets it back down before continuing on. "At our best we represent mankind's search for greater understanding of the universe around us- the urge to journey into the unknown."

He chuckles to himself, and looks back up to catch Castor's eye again, aware that he's begun to wax poetic. "I've got a tall ship and a star to steer her by. That's all I've ever wanted."
Edited 2016-07-18 05:09 (UTC)
james_t: (think)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-07-24 11:57 pm (UTC)(link)
Jim smiles back and dips his head a fraction at his life being professed 'cool'. That's a new one for him, but it sounds complimentary, especially coupled with the look of interest on Castor's face.

Castor's question is a little more worrying. He sighs and sets a fry down that had been halfway to his mouth. "If anyone can it will be them. And I intend to give them as much help as I can manage." His smile returns and he shoves the fry into his mouth. "You wouldn't happen to have any experience with computers or electronics? I started as an engineer, but I'm afraid everything here is going to be unfamiliar."
james_t: (whut)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-08-09 07:30 am (UTC)(link)
"I like this one," He nods down to his orange soda. "You can try it, but I saw some water by the front. We can get some on our way out." He shoves one last fry into his mouth and pushes himself up from the table. After Castor follows and he finds a trash can, he grabs up two bottles of water from the display and goes to walk out.

The man at the counter yells after him and he turns back confused. "You gonna pay for those?" the man says, and Jim turns his confused look on the bottles in his hands.

"For water?" That seems ridiculous. He understood paying for the soda, but water is water. "You can't sell water. It's a basic human right."

He's grumbling and about to pull his money back out, but the man surprises him by tilting his head to the side and then waving them off. "Fine, take 'em."

The entire encounter feels very...odd to him. He would have expected to have to pay, or at least for more of an argument. But he's not about to look a gift horse in the mouth, even if the gift is a bottle of water. He hands one of the bottles over to Castor, distractedly looking over his shoulder.

A moment later, he shrugs off the encounter and turns his attention back to Castor. "Would you mind coming with me to the electronics store? Or would you rather I take you straight to the apartments?"
james_t: (calling)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-08-30 02:53 pm (UTC)(link)
The electronics store isn't too far, so he heads in that direction wondering about just how many separate universes are present here in the form of unwilling immigrants. And how many might prefer this universe to the one they've lost? He can't imagine it, but what about Castor, who is from a place where even clean water is hard to come by.

He uncaps his own bottle and takes a sip of water as they walk. "Is it that bad, where you're from?"
james_t: (hay)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-09-09 08:59 am (UTC)(link)
"My universe may have more in common with yours than you think. If this were my native universe's twenty-thirteen, we would be twenty years out from a war that killed thirty million people and ten years away from a world war that took three hundred million."

He sighs and tucks his water bottle into the interior pocket of his coat. "It took decades of international cooperation and first contact with..." He falters, his mouth ticking up into a smile as he searches for an appropriate adjective to describe Vulcans. "a more rational people, to remake our world."

He slips his hands into his pockets and smiles over at Castor. "So you see, there may be hope for your universe yet."
james_t: (smirk)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-09-11 09:44 pm (UTC)(link)
Jim chuckles, "First contact with Earth was a couple of centuries before my time. But yes, I've met aliens. I've had the honor of making first contact myself a few times- sometimes more of a dubious honor than you'd think." He cringes a little, mentally going over just how many times a first contact situation had resulted in something or someone trying to kill him- more times than he'd like to admit.

"Vulcans are our longest ally. Andorians. Tellarites. Klingons, Romulans." He looks towards Castor, realizing belatedly that he's not answering the man's question. "Not all alien species are humanoid, but most in the Federation of Planets are. Andorians are blue and have..." he lifts his hands from his pockets and mimes antennae sprouting out of the top of his head with his index fingers. "Antennae. Tellarites have a sort of snout." Here, he mimes a short snout down over his nose and mouth. "Vulcans," he smiles, "look mostly like us, except for the green blood and the ears. Oh, and the eyebrows."

"I negotiated with a silicon-based life form once. It was sort of a big moving rock" He chuckles and clasps his hands behind his back. He can see the electronics store now, and he nods Castor towards it.
james_t: (smirk)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-09-21 04:49 pm (UTC)(link)
"I'm sure the Vulcans wouldn't call them minor," he chides jokingly, "but it's more than that."

"There are other physical differences, but the main difference is the Vulcan mind. They're...precise. And intelligent. For generations they've favored logic over emotion, sometimes to a fault." He smirks as he looks up at the electronics store sign, making sure that they're at the right place. "Though my first officer might disagree on that point."

He pulls open the door and walks in, scanning over the room with curiosity as he goes. Up front are what seem like other types of cellular phones and other small computers, but it looks like further back is a disparate collection of parts meant for any number of projects.

The young man behind the counter (name tag Digby) waves a hello and distractedly tells them to ask if they need any help. Jim nods and heads back, hoping for inspiration to strike among the bits and bobs. This isn't going to be easy, he can tell. It might not even be possible, but it's still worth a look.
james_t: (pretty face)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-10-13 04:09 am (UTC)(link)
"There are a few," Jim answers, frowning at his own correction. His crew isn't past tense to him yet, and the implication that they are makes him uncomfortable. "I'd like to see more diversity aboard, but people off-world usually don't have an interest in Starfleet unless they were born on a space station."

"Spock was born on Vulcan, but he's half human so the situation is a little more complicated." To put it lightly. Spock doesn't talk much about his family, but meeting his parents had been a revelation. Jim glances over the categories of item available here. It does seem like he chose the right shop. It seems like there are some specialty items here that he wouldn't be able to find at one of the larger stores, but that doesn't mean that he knows what to do with them.

He eyes something that looks like a radio antennae of some sort, but he balks at the price when he sees the tag. That seems like a lot for something he doesn't even know if he needs or not. He frowns at it a moment before moving on. It seems like he may have to ask the man behind the counter for help after all.

"Spock would be a great help here. The last time we were in a situation like this one he managed to build a mnemonic memory circuit from spare parts and vacuum tubes." He turns over a bit of circuitry wrapped in clam-shell packaging to read the back, and sighs. This situation in nothing like the one that got them momentarily waylaid in 1930, but he can't help but compare them in his mind. After a moment, he smiles and puts the package back. "Or as he called them, stone knives and bear skins."
Edited 2016-10-13 04:13 (UTC)
james_t: (calling)

[personal profile] james_t 2016-10-14 04:37 am (UTC)(link)
Jim snorts a faint laugh at Spock being proclaimed 'badass'. He's not entirely sure what that means, but Castor seemed to mean it in a complimentary way. He'll have to look it up when he gets back to his apartment.

The question Castor follows up with isn't as fun to think about. He picks up a soldering kit and reads the back as he thinks about it. He imagines that he'll need something like this no matter what he's ultimately going to be doing, so he keeps it in hand as he turns back to Castor.

"No. He could give me the exact odds, but they're probably astronomically bad. If time runs faster here, it's even possible that they've already moved on." He lifts the kit and gives a weak smile. "That's why I'm trying to help. It's the most I can do from here. Spock will hold out as long as he can, but there's only so long they can search."