etherthief: (Default)
[personal profile] etherthief
Almost got it now.

She's been working at this for days. Several unanswered calls from CERN and the empiricist groundy riding her ass about unfucking whatever documents she fucked. Not important right now. Not important potentially forever. That was a little joke. Ha, ha.

Dimensional strata aren't at all difficult to locate, it's narrowing in on each particular field that gives her trouble. She can practically see this one now, shimmering just a little out of her focus, if she lets her eyes wander a bit, she can just barely see it, and see beyond it. Like looking lazy-eyed through a screen door.

The Park beyond it looks almost identical, which is moderately encouraging. She's not looking for too massive a culture shock here. The field is much stronger here than it was at her lab, she's discovered, which seems strange. Something to do with the magnetic fields of that Earth, maybe? She hadn't really anticipated the stratum to be uneven, but it is significantly more visible in Central Park than anywhere else she's checked. Fascinating. Perhaps something is happening on the other side.

Well, in a moment, either she'll be able to ask someone, or she'll still be here, sitting in the grass.

She adjusts her hijab and raises her left hand to brace it along the invisible barrier. She can feel the clicks and whirrs of instruments and circuitry moving within the digits of her prosthetic. A soft hum that travels up the arm to the elbow, where silicone meets flesh. Soothing. She lets her eyes flutter closed, a bit of a romantic gesture, as though there were anything remotely spiritual about this process. She splays her fingers slowly, waiting for the alchemical reaction, the infinitesimal brushing of molecules across her carbon fiber skin. There it is. There it is.

She transmutes. Thinking carefully, intensively, about the universal constants that separate one world from another, splitting them, expanding them. Digging out a little hole, just for her. It's a tedious mathematical process, and she allows her thoughts to cradle every step of the formula. This is as close to meditation as she'll ever get.

There's the shift. A little tremor runs through her arm, and she sucks air through her teeth. Easy. Easy. This is it, don't get too excited but also don't fuck it up. She exhales a steadying breath and parts the field delicately, and then lets herself slip through.

It's very different from the test runs and the other times she's tried it and halfway succeeded. There's a sudden sucking force, expanding and contracting roughly, like someone's pulling from the other side. She feels all the air go out of her and gasps in a moment of panic, her reach and concentration shaken. She's supposed to let herself in gently, not like this, with all this force and undertow.

And then it's over, just like that. She's right where she was, but where she was (is) has changed. It's New York, but it's not her New York.

Fuck. Yes.

A little shaky on the dismount, but it all worked out fine. She's not glowing or anything. Nobody's freaking out about her sudden arrival. She can run figures and see what caused that hiccup later. She gets to her feet and brushes off her skirt, then looks up to survey her surroundings proudly. New universe. All right then.

Better find someone to talk to.
bluesuit_handy: (.serious | determined | squinty)
[personal profile] bluesuit_handy
Andrew's unease about his pregnancy has not abated despite James's best efforts to comfort him. Multiple scans have conclusively shown that he is not, in fact, falling apart on a cellular level, and furthermore that he does, in fact, possess the internal structures necessary to carrying a baby. On the other hand, he feels terrible all the time and a male, half-Time Lord pregnancy is -- much like a meta-crisis in general -- a medical mystery. He's been reading up on human pregnancy, which has mostly convinced him that he's in for nine months of pain and bloating. Lately, too, his trousers have started to feel tight, which can't be right at only five weeks in.

Getting out and walking seems to help with the sickness and the general malaise, so today he's set himself the goal of making it to and from the library without calling a cab despite the feeling that he'd really rather take a nap, eat some ice cream, and watch five hours of cartoons. The first half of the operation has been a resounding success thanks in part to automated check-out stands that don't ask questions or make comments about his stack of classic sci fi, trashy romance, and books on pregnancy.

Fruits of his labor in a canvas bag, Andrew slips out the library doors and points his nose toward home. He yawns and rubs his eyes as he goes, ready for a sit down but not sure he'll be willing to get back up once he does. His stomach is starting to act up, too, and less than half a block on his way he pauses and leans against a building, wrapping his free hand around his gut and willing it to pass. The wave of nausea only intensifies, though, and he grits his teeth and looks around for a trash can. He does hear the creak and crunch above him that signifies something more than a little important, but doesn't succeed in separating it from the general noise of the city.
johnny_truant: (careful consideration)
[personal profile] johnny_truant
True to his nature, Johnny hasn't kept up in touch with Jodie since he moved out of their hotel room. Less typical, however, is the presence of an actual inclination to right this. She's not someone he wants to sleep with and is scared will reject him. She's one of his only friends in the literal world.

It takes him an embarrassing amount of time to figure out the phone Gabe obtained for him, which has a futuristic touchscreen and a lot of really confusing sliding functions - he's opened more "apps" than he knew existed (a moot point, since what the fuck is even an app anyway) before he finally figures out how to goddamn dial. He hangs up on accident, but manages to bring the phone to his ear on the second go around.

The number works; she's still in the same hotel room. He feels a pang of guilt knowing that, but keeps his tone light and casual as he invites her and Aiden to hang at his place. Gabe has outfitted him with beer and enough furnishings to make it suitably cozy. He takes special care not to mention Gabe at all. Not just for her benefit. Gabe is an entity he's keeping firmly tucked into one particular corner of his mind right now.

It feels weird, inviting them over just to "chill," like that's a thing any of them do. Partly it is that. He wants to see how they're doing. He feels he owes it to them to keep up. He feels lonely and he wants to share some beer with someone and for extra special personal reasons Gabe is not that person.

Of course it's not just that. But how do you say "by the way, I've discovered the Rift gave me horrible physics-warping powers and I wanted to give you a private demo" nonchalantly over the phone? You don't, that's how.

This accomplished, he sets the weird future device gingerly aside and makes a cursory attempt to tidy an already fairly un-lived-in space. He ends up sitting at the tattooing desk Gabe so generously provided him, staring at the untouched inks and needles and sketch paper, letting his mind wander.
johnny_truant: (desperate)
[personal profile] johnny_truant
[directly continued from here]


Johnny has worked himself into a good panic over the course of the cab ride and on his way up the hotel stairs, until he bursts into the room and immediately paces all over it.

Jodie, fortunately, is still awake.

"I kissed him," he blurts, apropos of nothing. "I got way too drunk, and I fucking kissed him."
has_a_horn: (eyebrow raise)
[personal profile] has_a_horn
Gabriel arrives a little early outside of the bowling alley slash dance club slash restaurant that he'd suggested to Johnny as the place they should meet up. He hadn't actually mentioned the bowling alley part or the dance club part to Johnny, but he's sure that both him and whoever it is that he's bringing along will appreciate the options. If things go well, maybe he can get both of them to have some fun.

He's not one to just stand around waiting, so he pulls out a set of playing cards. Soon enough, he's gathered a small crowd watching his improvised magic routine.
heysoulsister: (paranoid)
[personal profile] heysoulsister
Jodie wakes with a jolt, shuddering with adrenaline. What the hell was that?

The memories of her dream are fractured variations on a theme, like a weirdass choose-your-own-adventure book that someone else was reading - several someone elses. And she's pretty sure one of them was Johnny. Christ. They really need a new living arrangement; now he's invading her dreams.

She pushes herself up and rubs her face as Aiden hovers nearby and mutters to himself. Casting a glance toward the other bed, she sees that Johnny's awake. Great. Now she has to pretend she didn't just have a really bizarre dream about him right out of the gate.

"Morning," she mutters.
heysoulsister: (paranoid)
[personal profile] heysoulsister
It would be more dramatic to say that Jodie walked straight down the main drag until the darkness swallowed her up. That's how it would work if this was a movie: she'd deliver her ultimatum and then stroll out of town as if wanton destruction was her job. But it isn't her job - not anymore, never again - and she's not walking, she's limping, and she's also not an idiot. So she ducks down the first side street she comes across that isn't a dead-end alley, pain lancing up her right leg with every step. Her back feels chilled without the gas station fire behind it, but that's okay - that's good. She doesn't want to feel the heat of what they just did - doesn't want to think about what they just did.

So she thinks about her leg, which is killing her. "Shit," she gasps, lurching against the facade of a darkened barbershop. "I'm gonna need help."

Aiden murmurs, tension humming through the tether that binds them. He's not exactly in a 'healing' state of mind right now; he wants to fight, or he wants to run, but just lurking around the corner is making him edgy.

"Yeah, I know," Jodie snaps, frustrated, "but I'm not running anywhere on this fucking leg, am I?"

There's a pause that might be disapproving or might just be sulky, and then coolness wraps itself around her injured limb. God, that's better. She slumps against the wall for a moment, pulling in the first deep breath she's taken since they cornered her in that theater, then tests her leg. Okay. Not perfect, but the pain is only a twinge compared to what it was before.

Aiden's impatience is like an itch. Okay, she thinks. We're going. And she continues down the road at a trot, keeping to the shadows and periodically turning to check for pursuers. Not that they left anyone in any position to run them down, but there will be backup. There's always backup.

Her route out of town is more direct than it should be, but maybe that's okay, too. She doesn't exactly have the edge in speed right now, and they'll be expecting her to use her training, not just bolt like an idiot. So she makes a few turns, heading more or less West, and then -

Sirens.

"Fuck!" A police car turns onto her street, headlights sweeping toward her, and Jodie does the only thing she can: she hurls herself sideways into a lilac bush. Branches scrape her arms and rake through her hair, and then her shoulders hit hard-packed earth and she rolls to her feet. And gapes.

That is not Bakertown's skyline rising tens - hundreds - of stories above her.

She twists so quickly she almost gives herself whiplash, but there's no sign of the shrub she just plunged through except for the leaves caught in her hair. She's in the middle of a goddamn baseball diamond, grit crunching beneath her sneakers as she staggers toward third, and above the dark silhouette of the trees is - is this Manhattan?

"Shit," she whispers, turning in a slow circle. This is wrong. This is wrong. Wrong, and too goddamn open. She breaks into a stumbling run until she hits the treeline and stops there, shaking. "Shit," she says again, one hand on a trunk to steady herself. Then her throat constricts, and she tries, "Aiden?"

There's a faint, hollow sound, like water circling a drain. Three small lilac leaves remove themselves from her hair, eddy through the windless air in front of her, and then drop. Still here. Okay.

Okay.

She should keep moving. But she's exhausted, and she's pretty goddamn sure no one is looking for her here. So she slides to the ground and sits, hugging her knees and catching her breath. She'll just rest for a minute. Then they can decide what to do.

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