Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Wed Aug 17, 2011 3:19 pm

Diederik didn't even know what had hit him until he was already down. Unfortunately, the same could not be said about when he was suddenly stabbed through the eye. He didn't care if it'd hit his brains out--actually, that might have been preferrable. At least he would have died, and the pain would have ended quickly.

But no. It didn't end. It seemed to bloom forth from the point of the stake, flowing out like a fountain... A red, red fountain... The pain flowed and it didn't stop, making him forget everything but it, save for a few strange thoughts that floated past his mind.

If I have to start wearing an eyepatch...I'll be hearing pirate jokes for the rest of my life...

It was strange what one could think about when in excruciating pain.

Cursing and gasping for breath, he struggled to his feet and over to the door, holding his eye as the blood seemed to spew forth from between his fingers. He wondered if it would ever stop, if he was going to literally cry his heart out... He wasn't sure what he was doing, just that he needed help--staggering into the bar, unable to speak through his clenched teeth.

It happened slowly. The man closest to him noticed first, an expression of horror slowly dawning on his face. Then another, and another. And then, the cries started.

"Captain!"

"What happened?"

"Captain! Captain!"

He was only able to utter one order, voice strained like never before: "Get the goddamned doctor!"

--

Piter had been anxiously watching the sidewalk for any sign of a tall, blonde floozy, wondering if this would take long. Apparently not. The strongman exited the building...through the window--and appeared to be looking for him.

The sight of the blood made an excited tremor go down his spine. Had he killed him? Had he? He wanted to know--if he'd orchestrated the death of another human being. Of course, one could argue that Cosim would have eventually done it anyways...but Piter had figured out his intentions and used them for his own bidding, without ever having to get his own hands dirty. It was the kind of power he longed for.

Starting up the car again, he pulled over to where the giant was and leaned over to throw the door open. Something glinted in his eyes...some excitement or fascination that wasn't there before. But his expression and tone remained the same as ever: unfazed.

"I take it things went well?" He asked pleasantly (as pleasant as monotone could be), as though he couldn't clearly see the blood that stained the other man's hands.
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Wed Aug 17, 2011 5:18 pm

He got into the car as easily as if nothing had just happened and his face wasn't smattered with someone else's blood. "It went well enough." He grinned-- not mirroring any emotion Piter was feeling. He just felt... better. And Sonya would too, once she'd heard. "I don't think he's dead. But it could happen." He almost wished he could have taken out the eye and given it to her. but that would have taken too much time and with the other man's height, it wouldn't have been so easy.

"Get me back-- I really actually do have work to do." And he probably needed that stake. Oh, well. He'd find something else that would work.

----

The night had been uneventful for Vesna-- in that nothing had happened that she hadn't expected. Her meeting with her sister went as she thought it would have (even still, what gave her the right to talk-- scientist was as crazy a dream as actress, in the abandoning home life department). Getting drunk in a movie theater went as she had expected, even predicted. And of course, the time spent with that man (what was his name?) for the tickets and the what seemed to be, (after she'd thought about it almost on the way to the bottom of the glass) cooking sherry, was expected.

She didn't exactly expect a car to go speeding by and nearly hit her as she stumbled along the edge of the street, reciting monologues she thought she had forgotten long ago. She didn't expect it to look familiar, either.

Still, she thought nothing of it. She would get back to the inn, and go to sleep, and wake up not having anything to remember the prior day by except a hangover and maybe a bruised cheek. Maybe. Her sister couldn't hit for shit. But that was to be expected also. Especially coming from a woman who was so genuinely unassuming until crossed the wrong way. Not many former brothel girls lasted long if they talked badly about her or those she'd called her friends. Ungraceful, sure but... who ever said she had that in the first place? Not to mention now, wearing men's clothes, drunk and bitter, with a mess of a braid that could hardly even be called one.

Finally she reached the inn (how long had she been walking, anyways?), and swung the door open, not expecting much except to be groped a few times on the way to the room, and... was surprised. Instead of the bar being filled with laughing men who were just as drunk as her (she might have joined them, had they been) half of the room was in some sort of silence, with a static tension around them, and the other half was in a state of panic around one table and chairs.

She was about to think nothing of something significant again and walk past it all to the room when, as she passed it, she got a glimpse through a sliver of space between bodies and saw him. Well, it seemed to be him. It looked like him. But she didn't want to think so.

She was drunk, that was it, she thought. She should go to the room and sleep it off and it would all be better in the morning. Yet she found herself pushing through the crowd, and once she finally saw him, not even processing why, or how, or even quite what, she could only scream as the glass bottle shattered at her feet.

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Thu Aug 18, 2011 12:39 am

Not dead, but it was in the realm of possibilities? A slight disappointment washed over him, but... At least that blood meant something. It meant that someone was in worse pain than him. Rightfully so.

As he began the drive back (at a normal speed, this time), he touched the purple spot on his face absently. The blood had coagulated, but...it was still quite sore. Even blinking was uncomfortable. He didn't know how to treat a black eye--his knowledge in medicine was limited. He doubted that Franze knew any better, but it wasn't as though he had anyone else to turn to.

Pulling up to the carnival for the second time, he got out along with Cosim and locked the door.

"So interesting to see you again, but now I must excuse myself," he said, already walking away, "I have some unfinished business."

Making his way to the main tent (surely she was there by now--if not, he would be terribly dissatisfied), he let himself inside and walked right up to her sewing table.

"Franze, my eye hurts. Do something about it." ...Was his childish excuse for a greeting.

--

There was no morphine. There was no goddamned morphine. Just some whiskey he'd barely choked down, a rag to bite on, and several crew members to hold him down so he didn't writhe too much.

This was his own stinginess, come to bite him in the ass. Certain drugs were expensive, and they rarely needed them. Better just to 'man up', anyways, was his philosophy for handling a bunch of sailors. Well, he was manning up, now. Whether he liked it or not.

The eye was beyond saving. The only thing to do was extract what was left of it, sterilize the cavity, and sew it up. The extraction part was what was happening, at the moment. If the pallor of his face (whitish-gray, sharply contrasted with the dried-and-fresh blood that rolled down from the hole like layers of paint) and the way his fingers dug into the armrest of the chair were any indication, it wasn't pleasant.

He heard a woman scream, and something break, but he couldn't process anything in his mind, at the moment.

The antiseptic was applied, and in the midst of the burning sensation it created in his eye socket, one of the armrests was broken off. Another thing he would regret having to pay for, later. A lattice of stitches, and his eye was no more.

Finally relaxing in the chair, now the the worst of it was over, he breathed shakily, a sheen of sweat on his pale and strained features. Pulling the rag from between his teeth, he attempted to wipe some of the dried blood off (they'd only had time to clean the area around the eye), but found his fingers unwilling to cooperate in holding the cloth steady. Giving up, he opened his good eye at last, staring straight ahead for a while.

There was a silence in the room, punctuated only by a few concerns muttered under the breath here and there. His gaze finally fell on Vesna. Dully, he remembered that she'd been gone all this time.

"Hej..." Was the best he could manage. He was obviously tired.
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Thu Aug 18, 2011 9:18 am

He could have told him he lost an eye, but the man was already gone. So, with his hands and face still wet with blood, he went to go tell Sonya that his eye was gone. That he would have gotten the other if he had the time, so that he could feel like she had, but he didn't have the time.

Reaching the women's car again, he poked his head inside. She was still there, alone. Going in as quietly as he could (which meant not exclaiming when he hit his head on something, but it wasn't going well), he leaned down to kiss her. "How do you feel...?"

He certainly felt better. But it was more about her. And if she wasn't better then, she would be when he told her the good news.

Piter and Franze's exchange, however, began on a bad note. He'd barged in, unannounced, and her finger very nearly ran into the needle. She knew it was Piter before she even saw him. "Goddammit, I don't have time for--!" And then... She saw him. "Oh my... God..." Not that she hadn't expected it... But it was worse than she'd expected. She got up immediately and gestured for him to follow her to the icebox.

------------

She saw it all. Even though stitches covered it, she could still see that dark abyss under it in her mind-- the pain he was in. And what was she doing while this happened?

"C-can somebody help me... He needs sleep..." she mumbled, forcing herself not to cry for the umpteenth time that day. He didn't need that now. So she followed behind to disguise the few tears that fell as a few of the crew members helped him to his room and onto the small bed. She couldn't even compose herself enough to tell them thank you as they left.

She busied herself with getting his shoes off and whatever else would make him uncomfortable before she even felt up to saying anything. "I'm gone for just a few hours," Or was it the whole day? She didn't remember. "and I come back to one less eye." A pathetic attempt at a joke. "What're you planning on losing next time I go, huh...?" She attempted to laugh, but it just sounded strained. She didn't want to know how or why it happened. It could have just been an accident.

She headed into the even smaller bathroom and soaked a towel in water, returning to sit on the edge of the bed and wipe the blood and sweat from his face, though her burns wouldn't allow much movement still. "Look at us," She smiled sadly, but had nothing to say afterwards. She was too drunk, too sorry, too sad. So she said the only least harmful thing she had in her head.

"...Are you going to get an eyepatch...?"

Funny what thoughts pass through the mind in times of crisis.


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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Fri Aug 19, 2011 12:47 am

Hearing him from the first time he'd hit his head, she nevertheless kept her eyes closed and her breathing steady, knowing that he was attempting to be quiet. When he was next to the bed, she rubbed her eyes and opened them--perhaps as any sighted person would have done. For her, it was practically a formality.

Kissing him back, she smiled, "Better..." Not completely, but better, yes.

That was, until her delicate nose got a whiff of what had stuck to his clothing. The faint scent of smoke, but also... Mouth turning downwards, her nose wrinkled in distaste, "What is that...? It smells like..." She wasn't sure if she wanted to say what it smelled like. ...Let alone know.

--

"Ditya punched me," he stated flatly as he followed her, pleased that she was doing as he'd asked. ...Rather, 'ordered'.

"But all is well," he informed her, "I've extracted revenge in record time--I'm informed he might die. That would be rather exciting, don't you think?" If it wasn't usually easy to tell if he was being joking or not, it was now. He was clearly deadly serious, and looked to Franze with the expectation that she would share the sentiment. After all, she didn't like the man, he knew that.

He did wonder, though, how she would react to this latest escapade. She didn't exactly seem to approve of the arson, kidnapping, and grand theft auto, when he'd mentioned it to her. Well, now 'assisting in assault' and 'assisting in attempted murder' (or, as he hoped, straight 'murder') could be added to the list, as well. 

As for him...he rather liked it.

--

He hardly knew what was going on, anymore, or what had happened. Maybe now that he was in a bed, he'd wake up to realize it was just a nightmare. He couldn't hear the metronome, after all, so how could he be sure? Maybe he'd never wake up. 

He couldn't even grapple with the fact that he'd just lost an eye; the shock wouldn't let him. It had happened so suddenly, and for no reason... Other than karma. That was all he could come up with.

And he deserved it, really. Maybe worse, even.

He watched her for a while, then stared at the ceiling when he realized that with one eye, he couldn't see anything to the far left, over his own nose. And he never would again. The prospect was almost maddening.

"A hand," he finally responded, "So I can put a hook on it." A joke for a joke. He said it so dryly that it could have been taken seriously, though. But he'd never been one for humor.

"Look at us."

He looked at her. He couldn't see himself, but he could guess that he'd looked better. So he looked at what he could see. Reaching up to wipe some of her tears away, as she cleaned his face up (blood, sweat, and tears; they really were a match--), he paused midair when he saw that it was the hand he'd used to staunch his own blood. He hadn't gotten to wash it, yet.

So instead, he sat up briefly (he probably shouldn't have), leaning over to kiss her once, tenderly. For the first time as a person, not a customer. He lied back down, decidedly exhausted. Before he drifted off, he mumbled, "Ja...probably..."

He didn't want to think about himself in an eyepatch. Jokes, ahoy.
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Fri Aug 19, 2011 10:16 am

"It's a good smell, see?" He placed his bloodied hands in front of her face. "It's the man you were afraid of--" He paused, for drama, or maybe it was because he was just giddy over the whole thing. "I took out his eye."

He wiped his hands on his pants, not worried at all about the fact that it would later be in full view of everyone and that those were one of only three pants he owned. "I would have killed him-- but I might have gotten caught for that." He vaguely wondered what had been done with the eye. Or if Vesna would find him too ugly to stay with.

Then he uttered the words that she had probably always feared about his criminal escapades. "I did it for you... Because I love you."

-----------

She just made a dissatisfied "Mm." at his explanation of the black eye while looking for something no one would miss. Hadn't she told him? She pulled out a row of Popsicles wrapped in wax paper and placed them over his eye.

She almost dropped them when he said what more he'd done. It was true she didn't like Diederik but... It wasn't him she worried about. "What in the world is happening to you." It was more of a statement than a question. She knew he was a bit sadistic... But not so much to ever take pride in killing someone else. She didn't want to know the story. As far as she was concerned, she wasn't going to see Diederik again. But Piter she expected quite often. "You can't... You can't just do that...!" She left the Popsicles for him to hold while she got a grasp on the situation. She waited for him to say he was kidding. But he wasn't a kidder. "For punching you in the face...?!"

--------------

She laughed quietly, finding it odd but relieving how he could joke then but not normally. "No," She drunkenly half pouted. "Those hands are special. You think I'd still be with you without them?" She joked right back but... It was half true.

That kiss held more than others before it. She couldn't put her finger on it but... He was out cold before she could ask. So she just dragged herself up after cleaning the blood from his hands and pulling the covers up over him as much as they would go, and went to use his bath, taking the nightgown with her so it could be washed too. If he wasn't awake, he couldn't object, right?

Her burns were an issue... But it felt better to just throw soap in the bath and soak. Finally she felt the fire, the sherry, that other man, and the stress of the past few days leave her. Periodically she would drain the water and add more to get the grit out of her and the nightgown.

She left it on the bathtub's ledge to dry afterwards, figuring she would just have to sleep in his shirt. She'd slept in less. This time she wasn't just holding onto him to keep from falling off.

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Fri Aug 19, 2011 10:54 pm

((Sorry, had to respond out of order. Had to. :I /SHOT))

She drew back slightly, the stench nearly making her gag. Her eyes were wide with confusion. He did...what?? She found herself having trouble comprehending what she'd just been told. Desperately, she wanted it to be a lie, but...it didn't sound like one.

She sat up, hair falling around and framing a face alight with fear. Her head shook...slowly, at first, then more vigorously.

"You--why...? I don't want you to hurt people for my sake..." Not that she cared about the Dutchman. He deserved whatever he'd gotten, surely. "What if he reports you? What if the police come looking for you, now? What if you'd gotten injured, or...or worse?" Then, more quietly, more afraid, "And...it's not okay, to hurt people..."

It was hard to explain. Van der Linde deserved it, but it was because he was the kind of person who hurt people. She didn't want Cosim to be that kind of person, too (despite that his record clearly indicated otherwise).

--

Franze's method of deeling with the situation turned out to be more than satisfactory. He held the popsicle to his eye, already planning on eating it as soon as the opportunity arose. Soothing his pain was not nearly so tempting as the prospect of frozen sweets.

"I'm sure I don't know what you're talking about," he remarked coolly, "I can do anything I want, if I have the means and so long as no one interferes. People deserve to be punished twofold, when they hurt me." 

There was a definite note of childish self-centered cruelty in his words, but even beyond that... There was more to it. To have masses of people slavishly loyal to him, yet hold the power to determine their fates at the same time. To smite them at will, when they displeased him. Some might have erroneously labeled him as having a God complex, or megalomania. But he knew that he was simply born to be in power.

The big question was: had he always felt like that, or only since his dreams had opened his eyes? He couldn't remember.

--

Diederik did not sleep peacefully, despite his exhaustion.

He had nightmares of screaming, fire, ships blasted to pieces, a murmur ("Where is God?"), bitter starvation, an endless blue sea, bloodshed, (Where was that familiar clicking that reminded him to never fear what he saw behind his eyelids?), a smell that was unforgettable, and a man brandishing a stake--

Gasping, he jerked out of his sleep, sitting upright automatically in bed, eyes flying open--and yet, one did not. Reaching for it in a panic with his fingers, it took the feel of the stitches to remember why. 

Collecting himself, he got out of bed and repositioned Vesna so that she wasn't in such danger of slipping off the side (thank God he hadn't accidentally knocked her over, just now--). Taking a tired glance out the window, he could see that dawn was breaking. No point in going back to sleep, then.

It took a considerable amount of willpower to look in the mirror for the first time. It wasn't as bad as he'd dreaded, but still...the last time he saw himself, he had both eyes. Now suddenly, it was like looking at a different person. Running a hand through his hair, he sighed, not sure how to feel about the events of the previous day. Maybe just relieved that they were over.

Glancing at the bathroom, he noticed that the door was open, and went over to close it... Before spotting the nightgown. Stepping inside, he picked it up, as though he'd never seen a dress before--really, he was thinking about what it meant. 

She had no clothes. And she couldn't keep wearing his. What was he supposed to do? He didn't know anything about women's clothing, and he didn't know how to approach her on the matter. (Maybe he would just get his brother to deal with it--) And for that matter, how was she bathing? He hadn't really thought about it before, but wouldn't the bandages make it difficult?

...Did she need help--

No, no, he pushed that thought from his mind. It wasn't like he could ask her about that, anyways. First things first: address the clothing problem.

After getting dressed himself, he draped the gown over a chair and sat down to smoke, waiting for her to wake up.
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Sat Aug 20, 2011 8:26 am

This was not the reception he'd expected. Quite the opposite. He just watched her fear in pitiful confusion. She should have been happy, she should have felt safer. "I... No one saw me long enough to make a report..." But really he didn't know that for sure. Then, more quietly, "And if Vesna's still with him she won't let him do anything to me." Callous, but it was her sister Vesna hated, not Cosim.

"You told me yourself... He's not a person." He'd slayed a monster for her. Or tried to. "I didn't want you to be afraid anymore..."

---------------------

"You can't do anything you want." Had his parents never told him so? ...that shouldn't have even been a question. Of course not. "It's not right." And she couldn't think of a real reason why, but it wasn't. "Especially not what you're doing." She was all for revenge but not his kind.

Seeing he was eyeing the Popsicle more than listening, she pried it out of his hands, getting frantic like a mother. "Are you listening to me?? Piter-- you could go to jail!" Not for as long as those who'd executed his orders, but long enough. One day in jail was probably long enough for Piter.

She calmed herself with a little pacing. "Jesus Christ... I never thought you'd end up like this..."

-------------------

It took a while for her to sleep off the alcohol. But a headache had woken her up eventually, and her eyes opened on a ceiling clouded with smoke. Following it to its source as she sat up, she found him in a chair, looking somber as always. "Good morning, handsome." It was best to bolster his self esteem. She got out of bed, having to hold her head for a moment when she stood up, and made her way over to him, kissing him like he had the night before. The eye bothered her... But if he was going to cover it once it healed then there was no problem.

Her clothes were a problem, she remembered when she caught sight of her nightgown. "Sorry... I had to wash it-- I hope you don't mind..." it was difficult to find a correctly fitting dress in normal circumstances, let alone when she had nothing. Most were too short, too small in some places but to big in others... And the one's that did fit were usually ugly. It gave her a headache to think about. Then again, everything would give her a headache, that day.

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Sat Aug 27, 2011 8:44 am


He didn't know that no one had seen him. Van der Linde himself must have gotten at least a glance. "What if he sees one of those posters? What if he recognizes the picture?" She was working herself nearly into hysterics, now, "You don't know if Vesna could stop him! He's not human; he might not listen to her!"

Gulping back a choked sob, she scrambled frantically to find and hold his face, "I am afraid...for you." It was much worse than being afraid for herself. She was always afraid for herself, because she was handicapped. But Cosim was strong. It felt awful to think he could be in real danger.

--

"Pray tell, Franze, who's going to tell me 'no'? You?" He asked softly, challenging her, "Are you going to stop me?" He doubted it. Franze couldn't stop a fly from trampling her if she'd tried. ...Of course, he didn't consider that physical prevention wasn't the only way of stopping a person. And he didn't think that anyone was capable of 'manipulating' him into doing anything he didn't want to. 

But then, no one he cared about had ever tried.

He could have laughed, though, when she suggested that he might go to jail. "Not to be egotistical, but I honestly doubt that any hick lawyer in this backwater country could outwit me," he leaned over and calmly took the popsicle back, unwrapping it, "Out of sheer curiosity, how did you think I'd end up? With my personality, and penchant for becoming bored?"

--

The somber look didn't change, especially when she had to hold her head so suddenly. He hadn't paid much attention to her drunkeness the previous night--all things considered, it hadn't been the first thing on his mind--so he was really just now thinking about it. Why had she been drunk? What exactly happened when she was gone? He knew he wouldn't just ask; it wasn't in his nature to pry. Still, he would wonder, secretly.

At least, for the sake of her inevitable hangover, he wasn't a talker. He likely wouldn't have much to contribute to the headache.

His countenance did improve somewhat when she kissed him back. Glancing at the supposedly offending gown in question (Why would he mind?), he spoke around the pipe in his mouth, "You don't have anything to wear." It probably should have been a question, but it came out as a statement. "We'll go see a tailor. I have to get something for this, anyways." He tapped a finger to his eye.

Remembering that she'd been drinking the night before, he quickly corrected the statement, "When you're feeling up to it...we'll see one." There wasn't much room left for compromise. She couldn't just not wear anything, and if she didn't have money...well, there wasn't much choice in the matter, was there? For either of them, really.
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Sat Aug 27, 2011 11:52 am

He was still confused as to how she could be so upset. He could take good enough care of himself, or so he assumed. He'd run from police 6 times successfully. And the time he didn't run fast enough, he ran right out of their chains. But telling her that probably wouldn't help.

Gently taking her shaking hands off of his face, he held them tightly. "You remember what we talked about before? If I hear there's someone after me, we could be gone in a day. Gone and safe." He never thought about whether or not they would be further hunted down. He'd just suspected he wouldn't have been worth it to anyone. Not only that, but he acted on what she needed rather than thinking about how it would affect him. Everything for Sofia. His world belonged to her, and he would do anything to make it peaceful. Outside of her he'd lost the ability to worry for himself. And in a way, he preferred it that way. But it seemed she didn't.

"I did it because I love you..." He reiterated softly. As if he was afraid she didn't get it the first time.

----------

"No one can stop you." She told herself more than him. "Because you don't listen to anyone. I didn't know how you would turn out but I'm more than disappointed it was like this."

But perhaps there was something she could do about it-- try, at least. If she was the only one he could go to for comfort, well, he wouldn't be able to anymore. "So I'm cutting ties with you. I don't want any part of what you're getting into." She pulled him up and directed him towards the exit. "And I don't think you should come back here again."

The last thing she wanted was to hear that he had somehow died from some quagmire he'd gotten himself into. So maybe it was better that she never see or hear from him again.

--------

"Normally people say 'good morning'," She smiled quietly, but soon realized, "But I don't think it is... For either of us."

She frowned at the disheveled braids over her shoulder and decided to just circle them around each other in the usual bun and pin it together with bobby pins she'd saved on the front of the shirt, with considerable difficulty from the burns. She was about to get back to the bed and sleep it off more when he mentioned her lack of wear, and a tailor.

The fact that he would care enough to want to put clothes on her instead of off seemed significant enough. But he would take her to get proper clothes? She stared at him, befuddled, for a moment. Yet, as usual, there were no clues in his face.

"I'm not going to feel better any time soon..." If she didn't take the chance now... maybe he would change his mind. "We can go now--" She immediately threw off his shirt and hastily pulled on the nightgown without any thought. "I'm dressed." Technically it was backwards, but... They couldn't very well be seen outside wearing the same thing, could they?

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Sun Aug 28, 2011 11:39 pm

"I know," she said softly. Don't be worried, I know you love me, I know... "But if you love me, you have to take care of yourself, too..."

She kissed him, holding it for just a second or two before practically begging him, "Promise you won't put yourself in danger, unless there's just no other way...okay? Please..." If one didn't know any better, they might have said that she was looking into his eyes imploringly.

She knew they could run away, go somewhere together where it was safe... But that was the key: together. If he put himself in danger and was taken away, then they wouldn't be, and... And she didn't know what.

--

He almost smiled (almost) when she correctly stated that he didn't listen to anyone. Having somehow managed to swallow the popsicle in all of three bites, he was now focused on attempting to bend the leftover stick without splintering it, as she spoke about his unstoppability. It was like music to his well-tuned ears.

But then the record scratched and the song came to an abrupt halt. The stick snapped in two between his fingers.

"You can't do that!" He blurted out automatically, slightly panicked, eyes wide. She was abandoning him!? She wasn't allowed to do that! She was supposed to be there for him, whenever he was lonely. He wouldn't permit her to push him away so easily.

Quickly pulling himself together, he regarded her with pressed lips and eyes that betrayed how wildly he was scrambling for a way to force her to change her mind. As cold as ice, but with a definite note of fear, he threatened, "If you send me away, I'll become so bored, you know... I might decide to do much more terrible things than I would have otherwise. I'll join some organization--the Russian mob, perhaps. Why not? They're in New York, I hear. Everyone knows their higher-ups are intelligent people. I could easily be one of them. I could easily use them to do awful, gruesome things to people. For any reason that seems most amusing to me."

Scores of people could die for his sins, and he wouldn't give half of a damn. Just as long as he got his way. Just as long as Franze knew she couldn't just make him go away.

"You can't do that..." he repeated, more quietly, almost (almost) pleadingly.

--

He ran a hand through his hair (he got the vague notion that that could become a habit, soon), but didn't say anything. The fact that she had to go out in her bedclothes just proved how much she needed new ones. In any case, they'd make for a strange sight. Heights aside, there was the one with the sewn-up eye, and the other with mummy arms and wearing a nightgown.

Nevertheless, he lead her out and locked the door behind them. 

After asking the innkeeper where the tailor was (and reassuring him that he was fine, and yes, he would (grudgingly) pay for the damages to the inn's property from the previous day), he turned to her and asked, "Are you hungry? Or do you want to get fitted, first?"
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Tue Aug 30, 2011 2:01 pm

((GUESS WHOSE LIBRARY HAS WIFI B)))

"I promise," He replied automatically-- he never thought about anything she asked. He just complied. But really, after the fact, he realized he could try all he wanted... it didn't mean it would make it any easier. He had disguised his own pain and guilt in not thinking about his actions. He could say, 'I wasn't thinking, I'm not sure I could have meant it, I have a problem'. But he was capable of thought, like anyone else. He just would rather go without it.

Looking down at his now bloodstained clothes (that she would probably have to wash. Must have been cruel irony, or something like it. He didn't know. He didn't think about those things) and retreating back to an unthinking happiness, he offered, "I want to spend the rest of the day with you, is that okay?" If she said no, it wasn't, and he couldn't. But she rarely said no. "But first I think I have to switch clothes." Again he wasn't thinking. How many people there had already seen the blood that covered him?

-------
"I can do whatever I want." She replied calmly (but she couldn't lie that she was wary of how this episode would turn out. He had gone as far as shouting previously), "You said you could. Why can't I?"

His threats were empty-- empty in that she suspected that was what he would do anyway, with or without her. If he was trying to scare her... she had already scared herself enough. And she had a feeling, though she didn't know, that to order violence in the mob you first had to become a violence enforcer. And he couldn't do that (perhaps it was because he wouldn't do that?), because people were unpredictable face to face. Piter was a man that felt safe only behind a wall of expendables.

She scoffed at the threats, though the thought of what he could have gotten into terrified her before, "Oh please. You don't give a shit about people you don't know and you know very well I don't, either." Perturbed as she was by he and his actions, it still held true that she did in a way, love him like family (or whatever was closest) and knew that throwing his problems back at him would only make him more unstable. "I'll tell you what. I won't make you leave. I'll always be around. Because you have to stay here." If his parents never disciplined him, someone had to. "You'll get food, and water, and things to read" Not that many, just what she had. "But you never leave my sight." She wasn't really that worried about sleeping-- she could use Itakshir's empty car-- and Piter wasn't exactly known for hounding women around. "Agree to this--promise me-- and I won't leave you bored. But if you break it once, if you make a mess of this place even once, then we will pack up and leave without you."

That was more authoritative than she'd been in... ever, probably. "Understand?"

-------

Eat before someone would measure her waist? She laughed a little. "You don't know anything about women, do you?" But, if it was offered, she would take it. And maybe he was hungry, too and was, well... quiet about it. "I'd like to eat afterwards though." They would be showing themselves off all over town that day. She wondered if he got self-conscious. "Do you get self-conscious?"

Of course, when she was on a roll, there was little room for any one else. "I don't. Not anymore. So it doesn't take that much to dress me. Well-- more than most women if they wore the same thing-- you know what I mean. I just don't usually wear much." During the day it was too hot for any respectable dressing (she didn't know how that Franziska woman could stand it. But she had hardly anything on her bones, and if Vesna's mother was right, would always be cold) and so she would only wear a bandeau and some women's trousers cut short (everyone knew she was a prostitute-- why bother). The nice dresses were saved for her job. "So you don't have to buy much. But then again I don't know how much it costs."

Gently, she slipped her hand into his and tightened it around his fingers as much as she could (not considering if he wanted to hold someone's charred hand) and watched pebbles pass by on the ground, in thought and for once not about to share it with anyone. The way they were (if they were any way at all-- how was she supposed to know?) was quite like her hand in his. it would probably never be able to grasp his hand fully-- they'd probably never really be in love. He would never say 'I love you' (and so neither would she-- without an equal response that feeling would just be taken from her forever and not exchanged with his), it was even too early to say so-- but then again it was too early to just take in a prostitute he'd seen just once. He would never say she was beautiful, or even if she wasn't. They existed in some kind of purgatory of grateful admiration and somehow meaningful sex. But perhaps it was better that way. She wasn't sure, but if he did love her, she might have to quit her job. And he would have to leave anyway, most likely when they reached the coast. Then she would be alone and unemployed and unwilling to look to anyone else for help but him. And he would be gone. That was where her future would end. There was nothing else to think about.

That was, until she saw a wind-crinkled paper nailed to an electrical pole. With a picture of someone familiar. A picture that didn't promise she'd be proud of the man on it. Without slowing her gait, she ripped it off of the rusted tack (the N on 'WANTED' was missing-- that tripped her up for a moment--), but was having trouble accepting what she thought she was reading. Could it be right? No. Not about her sweet Cosim.

So she held the paper up to him. "Can you read, with just one eye?" It was a legitimate question. "What does this mean?"

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Fri Sep 02, 2011 10:05 pm

“Of course it’s okay,” she replied softly, finally calmed and comforted, in lieu of his promise. She assumed he would go through with it—she didn’t see any reason why he wouldn’t. Being a person that thought so much (perhaps too much), it never crossed her mind that perhaps some people preferred not to—even if it wasn’t in their immediate best interests. And she needed to believe that he was perfectly capable of not doing bad, dangerous things, that he was truly the saint-like figure she’d built him up to be.

Using the mattress as leverage, she leaned up to kiss him again, more sweetly (she tried to imagine that she had sugar-coated lips—she didn’t know if this helped, but she liked to think that it might). Getting up, she attempted to make her bed (inevitably doing a poor job of it) before taking his hand.

“Do you need me to wash them?” She asked quietly when he mentioned needing to change his clothes. The question of why was something she didn’t really want to know. She could smell why. She already had a good idea of why. But she didn’t want to know for sure. It wasn’t hard to pretend like that rusty, sickening smell was anything other than what it really was. In her heart, she knew the truth.

But blindness occasionally gave her the strange freedom of deciding whether or not to accept some truths.

--

Though his basic expression did not change very dramatically, his complexion went white with fury, and some muscle spasmed in one of his hands, as though he would have liked to strangle her into compliance. The old Piter would have scoffed; he considered physical violence to be beneath him, not to mention too risky. But the old Piter wasn't always there, these days. And hurting someone as weak as Franze would not put him in much immediate danger—

(She was just a little woman, not much unlike the little women he saw in some of his darker dreams. Four little women, two with little corsets that curiously deflected his attempts to kill them. So he spilled their blood on those little corsets, staining the royal jewels hidden inside. Those jewels belonged to him, and they’d tried to keep them away from him. They deserved to die.)

'Immediate' being the key word. Later on, he knew, he would realize what a mistake it would be, when he himself would begin to suffer from it.

So instead, he considered her suggestion.

One could almost see the fan whirring behind his eyes, like a computer that was used to operating a certain way (albeit one that had recently contracted a virus or trojan horse) that had suddenly been thrown a new set of logistical commands. He had to process the information and decide how best to respond to it. He had no prior experience or emotional intuition related to this situation, which with to base his next actions on. There was no equation--no set of operatives saying "if x suggests this, within such-and-such parameters, then go to data: 'most opportunistic response'," etc.

It had been a long time since he'd last found himself with no collected data to work with. He had the same look about him now as he had for most of his childhood: when he observed everything with the same neutral, blank curiosity, building up his mental archives. As a young child, he'd once seen a peasant criminal that had been badly beaten by the police. The bloody sight didn't faze him. It was mildly interesting, and he peered at it with the same unfeeling indifference he would have shown towards anything else. What had caught his attention, though, was the reaction it incited in other people—in particular, the disgusted look on his governess’s face. He observed it carefully and later attempted to replicate it himself, in the mirror, for later use. So that he, too, could generate 'normal' responses.

After his father's funeral, he stopped trying to practice making any expression that didn't show boredom, contempt, or anger. Mostly anger. He was an angry child, in his own, cold way--except when Franze agreed to play with him.

And he could and would still be a cold, angry child, if he lost the last person he had.

Displeased and unsure what reaction would best benefit him, he finally replied, “As much as the idea of living in,” his eyes flicked around pointedly, “what might as well be mud huts thrills me, I’m inclined to think that you are only inviting me here because you are so wildly unpopular. I expect you’re hoping to win them over with my charm.” He paused, the outward signs of irritation gone and replaced by his usual contrariness, “Clever, but you can’t fool me quite that easily. …Nevertheless, declining the invitation could be counter-productive.”

Amused already (in the same way that a badly-behaving child is initially amused when presented with someone intent on setting them straight), he gestured towards the opening of the tent, “Am I allowed to fetch my things from the inn, or do I need to be supervised?”

--

Did he get self-conscious? Not about his appearance, really. His height made him stand out so much, so often, that being self-conscious about it had eventually gotten old. It was more of a nuisance, by that point in his life. As for his clothes...his were well-kept, but still obviously old and worn to a degree. He didn’t invest in new ones unless the old ones were unwearable. Looking fashionable or attractive wasn’t as much his priority as just being presentable.

But he did get self-conscious about other things. Like the fact that he sometimes found himself tongue-tied when it was most imperative to speak. And that people accused him of being greedy and cheap—which he was, but he didn’t need them to point out what he already knew. There was a reason for it, just as there was a reason for why anyone was a certain way. He just didn’t feel he was obligated to go about explaining himself to everyone.

…Which was perhaps why he wasn’t the most popular man, save for around the crew (and even then, he was an authority figure, not a friend).

And which was also why he only gave a simple, “No.” He couldn’t say that he got self-conscious about things other than appearance without explaining himself, so it was more prudent to just say ‘no’. It was, after all, the honest response to the original question. Besides…she didn’t leave him much room to say anything else, anyways. So it worked out on both sides.
He did appreciate, though, when she claimed to not need much. Given his aversion to both the non-essential, and spending, he could only hope it was true. Incidentally, the Austrian woman also crossed his mind: he thought it would be a nightmare to date someone like that, who could probably run a bank dry in a matter of minutes.

When she held his hand, he didn’t say anything, but neither did he make any move to pull away. It didn’t particularly bother him, though it was certainly nothing that he was used to. Tentatively, he curled his fingers over hers—nearly covering them entirely—making sure not to squeeze her injuries. It was strange, how quickly they were tumbling into…whatever the hell this was. Maybe that was how it was meant to happen: so quickly that you weren’t sure what was going on, so that you couldn’t stand back and think that maybe you were making a mistake. That maybe it could turn out badly. He didn’t like to think about love. He didn’t know how to think of it. So he didn’t.

That said, he did wonder about how much the crew was poking fun at him behind his back for all this. But he supposed if it bothered him more than he wanted to be with her, he would have cut the relation short by now. And that, too, in a way, was something he wasn’t sure what to think of.

It turned out he didn’t have to, though, when he was suddenly handed the torn poster. The already permanent line between his eyebrows deepened as he immediately recognized what it was. Disgusted, he handed it back to her, grunting, “It means the guy who stabbed me was already wanted—for murder.” Why had it caught her eye, though? It wasn’t like she’d been there when it happened.
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Sat Sep 03, 2011 12:10 am

All of the pent up stress from her unexpected response left when she seemed to forgive him (he was so attached to her every word that anything less than praise was condemnation). In his mind, it meant she would always forgive him, for any wrong. And, since she was the only one that mattered, if she would always forgive him then he could do no wrong, and even if he pulled a man's heart out of his chest, it wasn't wrong if she was still happy. Thus, he would always be able to abide by her rules.

He was living in a constantly volatile world-- the world of Sofia, where nothing else existed except her changing emotion, like weather, or the seasons. This episode had been a near disaster, it had shaken her up so. However, he had yet to realize he controlled the world that controlled him with his actions.

After prolonging the kiss as much as he could (incidentally that was why he liked to give her sweets-- literal sugar coated lips--) he took her hand (meanwhile tried to straighten up the bed with his other hand) and led her out-- she probably knew the way out better than he did, he hit his head on things so many times-- and wondered if really she should have the burden to wash out the blood of someone who'd so tormented her. Not wanting to think, like always, he replied, "Not now... I could always get someone else to do it. I can do it myself." He was still under the impression that she did too much. And it worried him.

But luckily, her blindness had made it easy to keep an eye on her, and also made it easy to keep her close. No one would care if he took her into the men's car just for a moment-- after all both cars were usually empty during the day (having no way to cool down the air inside from the heat outside), and she was blind.

"Watch your step," He told her gently up the stairs and into the car. He was probably watching her step more than she was. He left her by the door and went over to his trunk of meager belongings. Two outfits (though they could hardly be called that) sat on the musty bottom, one of them including prison trousers. Given the choice, he opted for the other, virtually the same as he had been wearing, sans blood. Cosim wasn't much for change. He discarded the bloodied clothes (neatly) on his bed to remember to wash later, unafraid anyone would discover them, before donning the 'new' clothes (there was a chance they were dirtier than the prior ensemble-- he didn't like giving her more work to do).

It was hard to find something to occupy a blind woman's interests at a carnival. Many times he felt inadequate, uninteresting, not enough to keep her occupied. She couldn't have too many sweets, she was too skittish for a ferris wheel, and she wouldn't enjoy watching him practice his act because... she couldn't watch. So instead, he offered, "Why don't you take me somewhere you like to be?" He followed her when she thought herself independent. She went into an empty car for... something, he couldn't know. But from the sides he always heard a scratching, etching noise, as if something was being carved into the wood. He had always been afraid she would hurt herself in there, but could never go in to see. This was his chance.

-------------------

Something was wrong with him. For that reason, she had to supervise everything he did, ignoring her fear. There had to be a reason he just snapped. Snapped and then became his normal self. It was confusing, frightening, and... somehow her heart ached to have back that cold, unfeeling, yet stable person. Because as much as he thought he needed her, she needed him, for the same selfish reasons-- she was everything he wasn't, and he was everything she no longer had, emotional inhibition. Well... not anymore. She had to get him back.

And though the notion was there that she might be killed in her sleep... she was glad he was complying. Marching ahead of him, she told him, "If you think I'd let you drive a car again, you're wrong." He didn't exactly have a spotless driving record, anymore. But in his eyes, of course it wasn't wrong. One couldn't get a traffic ticket for kidnapping. So he had driven fine. "And someone has to keep you from getting another shiner."

She got in the car-- driver's side (she didn't want to be kidnapped as well)-- and turned the key, waiting for him to get in. The car was hers, from Mystique. She hadn't had the heart to get rid of it. It doubled as a place to sleep sometimes, too.

"I'm sure you'll be sensational around here." She laughed dryly, rubbing some dust off the mirror before pulling away. "But... now that we're on the subject of people, I have a few more rules. Just as serious as the others." She didn't remember how long she'd known him, but it had been a long time. He forever seemed critical of any man who wanted her attention. He passed it off as saving them from the trouble of dealing with her, but she'd had the suspicion it was just to keep them away from her so he could have more time. It was a selfish thought but... it was also selfish of him to do. And she could never put him past selfish. He had a mind like a steel trap. In that he quite literally would try to trap them in it, confuse them, scare them off. And poor, poor Itakshir. He had none of the mental integrity to stand up to it. "You are not," She repeated, "never allowed to speak to any man that speaks to me. You can think whatever you want, no one can hear your thoughts. I stay around you, and you are decidedly unlikeable. So, unless the man is even more unpleasant than you, abstain from talking to him. At all."

---------------

In some ways, she felt like she had just crashed into his life. He had met her with the intention of spending one night. Only one. But she had returned to him to insult his generosity, to make him feel guilty. Then ensnared him with a deal that should have had no emotion connected to it. She had gone home, only to be forced out and back to him. And she hadn't even thought of leaving since then, not even now when he was forced to buy her clothes and food (and though she could wear so little clothing, she couldn't just eat so little food). She wondered if his opting out of speech was meant to push her away, as sometimes it could, whether he intended it or not.

Which was why she was glad she felt his hand warm hers up, even if it might have been out of pity. It meant it was okay to impose affection on him, that he wouldn't oppose it, but neither would he ask for it. It was true she didn't mind her nine-to-five, but what prostitute didn't dream of playing house, playing at love? But she couldn't be sure she was still playing. She should have been. So that was what she went with.

Yet nothing felt like imposing on his life-- no, crashing; destroying-- as much as her newest discovery had. She didn't want to know what had happened to his eye, preferring to pretend it had always been that way. "No..." She stopped in her tracks, shaking her head at him as if he'd made a preposterous misunderstanding. "He wouldn't. He didn't. You're thinking of someone else." Murderer. Surely it wasn't the same person. Couldn't be. "You didn't read it right, you only got it half right. You only have half your eyes." She was futilely struggling to push away a truth she couldn't rationalize ever coming to be. "And it's printed wrong. It's the wrong person." Pulling her hand out of his with a wince, she followed the cables to the next post. The same paper was there. She compared the two quickly, her eyes dancing from one to the other frantically. The second one came off. Tightly crumpling them both in less than agreeable hands, she was in pain in too many ways. "Help me-- Diederik, help me," Help me, I don't understand. "These are wrong. Get them down, they're trash..."

She could take care of herself just fine. Better than most women. But when her troubles leaked into the lives of other people, she couldn't do anything. She couldn't make him forget the man who'd taken his eye. She couldn't go back in time and taught Cosim that might wasn't really right. She wanted to be angry with Diederik. He saw someone else. And so had police. Six times they saw someone else. She quickened her pace from one to the next, her heart beating faster than her feet hit the ground, she could feel it in her fingers as the sensitive burns pressed down on the stiff corners of thick paper.

"I... I can't breathe...!" All the emotions she didn't know how she was supposed to feel, she'd stuffed into her lungs to exhale and forget, as usual. But none of them would leave.

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Sat Sep 03, 2011 10:36 am

Curious, she felt his new clothes, wondering what else he wore--wait. Her lips puckered into a pout, "These are exactly the same." She couldn't say she wasn't a bit disappointed. ...But then again, anything else might have seemed less 'Cosim'.

Pushing that aside, her face lit up when he invited her to take him somewhere she liked. She immediately knew where--as it so happened, she'd been waiting for the opportunity to show him 'her' car. She'd divided it into two sections: top and bottom. Now that the 'bottom' was finally filled, she felt that it was ready to be shown off.

Taking his hand, she quickly pulled him outside, only stumbling a little on the unfamiliar way, eager to take him to her secret place (and, admittedly, to get out of the men's lodgings, which smelled like sweat). ...Or, what she thought was a secret.

Counting the number of her steps on the way, adding ten or so for the added distance of the men's car, she was able to easily find her car. Addressing him before going inside, she put a finger to her lips and smiled, "It's a secret place...okay?" Sliding open the door, she invited him in.

She had not actually gotten around to working on any equations yet--that was reserved for the 'top' portion of the walls (for which she'd found a crate to use as her way of reaching it). The bottom half was what she'd used to document all of her formulas, the periodic table, and the laws and theories of how everything operated. She'd painstakingly carved it all so that she'd never forget. Letting go of his hand, she ran hers over the walls, feeling the universe. 

Every action has an equal and opposite reaction... Humans are made from oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, and other trace elements... Human beings can not fly, they can only fall, because the earth draws them closely to it, never letting go... 

All of the numbers and symbols spoke a language to her; a language that was defined, not by culture or nationality, but by the universe.

Still facing the wall, she addressed him with a small smile, "Cosim, did you know that the universe is the sum of space, time, everything that exists...and everything beyond that? The universe never ends, never dies, and is governed by set, rational, absolute laws." She rested her forehead against the wall, murmuring, "I love that about it..."

Pausing for a moment, she turned back to him, giggling lightly, "And did you know another name for the universe is 'the cosmos'? It sounds like 'Cosim'."

Perhaps for her, in a way, it was symbolic.

--

He scoffed, "My driving is perfectly adequate." In his mind. Nevertheless, he got inside, content to let someone else do the driving, so that all he had to do was watch the road fly by and think.

Which was good, because he wanted to be the one with the slight upper hand, in this particular conversation.

Clicking his tongue, one finger tapping on a knee crossed over the other, relaxed, he replied straight off the bat, "I find all men that talk to you to be more unpleasant than myself. As well as all the women." Maybe he was being difficult, but in his mind, it was also truthful. All people that tried to take away the time that was, to him, rightfully his, were unpleasant. And should be disposed of. Especially the men.

And it was more than easy to come to the conclusion that there must have been a new man in her life. Immediately, he was contemplating ways around her orders, ways to get rid of this mysterious fellow, and yet keep her from being angry with him. There was always a loophole to be exploited. But first, he'd have to find out who the other 'he' was.

"So, according to your judgement, who is this less-unpleasant-than-Piter person I am meant to avoid?" No sooner had she made the rule, and already, he was intending to break it.

--

He stopped when she did, frowning, "Who else could it be?" The man in the photo wasn't exactly easy to be mistaken for anyone else. He was about to question why she even cared, why she was so insistent that the poster's information was wrong, when she suddenly pulled away and rushed off to the next pole.

Eyebrows furrowed, he followed after her, with no clue what was happening. What on earth was she going on about? So what if the man was also a murderer? It wasn't exactly improbable--all it meant to Diederik was that he was right in thinking he'd narrowly escaped a dance with death. And that he hoped the man on the poster would be caught so that he wouldn't have to worry about that waltz ever again.

Clearly, it did not mean the same thing to her.

Quickening his pace to catch up with her, he stopped her by taking her by the upper arm. Prying the crumpled pieces of paper from her hands, he discarded them onto the street, so that she couldn't hurt herself. Then, with his free hand, he ripped the poster off of the pole next to them and held it up for her to see.

He could have said a lot of things. He could have told her that she was being stupid, that this person was a vile criminal and deserved to go to prison. That by ripping down the wanted posters, she was enabling his freedom, and thus also committing a crime. He could have told her to calm the fuck down and just breathe, and stop acting crazy. He could have said that.

Instead, in the same calm, authoritative tone he used with his crew when rough weather hit, and everyone was prone to a little panic, he said, "Who is this person." 

Not who was the person on the wanted poster, but who was the person, to Vesna. Obviously, that was the root of the problem.
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Sat Sep 03, 2011 3:05 pm

"No... that one was a mess... and this one isn't as much of a mess." He kissed her pout lightly and laughed. "Besides, I thought you would appreciate familiar things." Being blind, maybe she could only remember one version of him, and he thought his clothes helped with that. It troubled him more than she would think how much her disappointment affected him. But, he cast it off just like she did, just reminding himself to save up to buy something different.

He followed her, resisting the urge to steer her in the right direction. She found the car eventually, informing him of its confidentiality. "I haven't seen anything." More ironic than she knew. But he really hadn't seen the inside. He wasn't sure what to expect... but it wasn't what he saw. Just a crate and... empty walls? Yet she gravitated to them. Confused, he touched the wall where she had been. They meant nothing to him except scratches in the wood. He supposed it was some kind of science... but he'd never seen an equation before and didn't know what to make of them. All he knew that they were meticulous, painstaking, careful, and well-loved. "Did you do... all of this...?"

"I'm sorry..." He smiled apologetically at her and laughed silently. "But I don't know what you're talking about..." And he'd probably never know. He would have added that it was too dark to really see, but... it wouldn't have mattered, to her. The only light came from the cracks in the wood.

He sat down on the crate, unable to do much except hear her happiness. Which was enough. He didn't know how many little carvings she'd made in the wall but he could bet there were many more than he'd be able to feel. "Sure, they sound alike, but they couldn't be more different." The universe was something else he could do without thinking of. If she encompassed it, life was much easier.

-----------

She didn't turn to him at all, and merely laughed at his remarks. They were disguised well enough, but they were the musings of a selfish child. "It's hard for you to understand, but you're a great deal unpleasant than most people. And since very few people talk to me, statistically few out of the most would mean that they would most likely be more likable than you. So you should just keep your mouth shut whenever anyone approaches me." She should have made that a rule before hand-- he could only speak to her. It would be all on her head if he caused the mental breakdown of someone else.

Since she was sure Piter would meet Itakshir eventually (he thought it was amusing to see how much he could startle her with an entrance, sometimes), why not throw the cold calculator for a loop? "He's very pleasant." She began with a wistful smile his way. "Not in the way you know it-- or will ever know it," (she almost blew her cover with laughter at the next bit) "but if you have to be around me even at night then you'll get to see exactly what i mean." As far as the real Itakshir.... she didn't really know. It was something she'd made herself wait for. But she didn't know how long she would have to keep waiting. It wasn't customary, she thought, for a woman to go about saying she loved the man first. She had before and it had been a disaster. So naturally it wasn't right. But she'd heard some stories from other women who'd seen her around him that seemed a bit incongruous to such a simpleton.

"He's very smart. So smart. Smarter than you. He's a genius. Who also likes punching people who challenge him in the eye." She looked away from the road to wince at the sight of his face. "And you were punched already, so I'd refrain from talking to him."

Up until then, everything she'd told him was a lie. But some truths were too outrageous to leave out. "He's not afraid of anything, either. He keeps a bear like a pet cat." Maybe he would believe it all. Maybe he wouldn't, and hear the bear's bellow across the grounds the next day and be startled into believing all of it.

She reached the inn eventually, and skidded to a stop in front of it, agitating a cloud of dust. "Get your things. Don't steal anything. Stay away from Diederik. And if you try to sneak out keep in mind I will hit you with the car." All of it was necessary.

---------

The situation was taken from her before it could really get out of hand. It felt like the earth was spinning around her, too fast for her to see anything, and that she wanted to get out. But there was nowhere to go. She tried to resist him taking the balled-up paper, but her arms were too weak. "Someone's going to pick those up and see them..." She could no longer be frantic, but she wasn't sure quite what she was supposed to be, so she just detached herself from feeling-- until he'd put the picture in her face that was surrounded by the untrue words. Her hands remained like a hollow exoskeleton after they were gone as blood started to trickle into the bandages from agitated burns.

The photo wasn't in color, but she looked at it as if they were reuniting again. She didn't suspect he'd ever grow up like this. It might not have been the same person, if she hadn't seen his eyes, his dishwater colored eyes that were clear yet held something murky at all times. She stretched out a bloody finger as far as it would go and traced the lines in the portrait, smiling sadly, as if she hadn't seen him just the day before. "He's my boy..." Not her real son, that was clear. She wondered, maybe, if this was all her fault. She'd brought him up with loving beatings-- right was praised, while the littlest wrong was punished with a bruise. It was because she loved him. She didn't want him to not know one from the other. And now she couldn't tell one from the other. Maybe her system she was afraid to let fail actually did fail, in the long run? Had it made him a murderer? Was she somehow responsible for Diederik's eye?

"I raised him... as a kid." She finally admitted, still staring at the paper. "I saw him with my sister yesterday..." Her eyes shot back up to meet his and the one that wasn't there and she quickly stammered, "But he would never do this! He wouldn't ever hurt anyone-- and he wouldn't do that to you...!" She took the paper in her hands lovingly. "He's too sweet... I'm sorry... but he wouldn't do that..." Didn't he have manacles? Weren't his trousers prison-issue? All a ruse. He only wanted to seem tough. It was fake. Diederik might have seen him but something must have happened and someone else had stabbed him in Cosim's stead. "I know he didn't do that."

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Sun Sep 04, 2011 7:52 pm

"It means," she informed him, gesturing at the four walls, "That in this room, we're surrounded by the secrets of how everything works." Well, not everything, but a lot of things.

That was what the room represented to her, right now. Mathematics was a highly abstract level of thinking, where the physical world was stripped away, leaving only the raw facts and figures, and applying symbolic logic to that, so that it would all make sense to the human mind. It was practically an art form.

Finding him on the crate after searching around for a second or two, not realizing if it was a bit dark in the room (after all, what did it matter to her?), she climbed onto his lap. Resting the back of her head against his chest, sensitive hears just barely able to hear his heart and his breathing, she laughed a little, teasingly, "You're not jealous because I said I love the universe, right? Because I love you more, you know..."

--

They would have to see about that. Franze should have known better than anyone that Piter was completely incapable of keeping his mouth shut, probably even if someone ordered him to do so with a gun to his head.

Her strategy, however, was working well.

Sounding slightly ill, he immediately informed her, "I believe I'd be happier sleeping in a freezing ditch, thank you." He couldn't think of anything he'd find more unpleasant than to have to see...that. Especially if Franze was involved. He didn't know how all of it worked (sure, you could read about it--or, as much as you could stomach--but it didn't make a lot of sense, on paper, to someone with no desire whatsoever), but what knowledge he was privy to was enough to make him feel entirely unsettled.

And the feeling didn't fade when she painted an image for him of exactly what he was up against--of course, she could have been lying. But going in assuming the best was practically suicide. If it was all true, he didn't like it. In fact, he hated it. This man was competition, and if he truly was a match to Piter in intelligence, then he would just have to trump him in sheer cunning. The resolve to dispose of him only strengthened.

But he would worry about that later.

Getting out, he strolled up to his room to pack (thankfully, half of the things in his suitcase had never gotten the chance to be taken out) and leave, locking his door with no intention of returning the key. It was just another thing Ditya would have to pay for.

And if that wasn't enough...on the way down the hall, he was suddenly struck with inspiration. Looking around to make sure no one could see, he went up to the door of Ditya's room and pressed an ear to it. Nothing. A tentative knock. Still nothing.

Contemplating the splintered wood of the damaged door, he selected a wide, flat, though still relatively sturdy chip, and broke it off. Checking once again to see that no one was around, he slotted the chip between the door frame, pushed down on the bolt, and unlocked the door.

Was there a rule against stealing? Well, it was about to be broken.

But what to take? No doubt he carried his money and pipe on him at all times, and the tobacco was too easy to replace... Then his eyes fell on the metronome. Perfect.

Of course, he couldn't take the whole thing; it was too big. But the large, shiny pearl, which served as the weight that controlled the speed of the clicking, would make a nice trophy. Better yet, removing it would prevent it from working properly. Sliding it off of the pendulum, he popped into his mouth on a whim (sure, why the hell not) for safekeeping (despite the fact that he had pockets), and left the room, leaving it unlocked. It was no business of his if something else got stolen.

Picking up his suitcase again, he hurried out to the car, putting it in the trunk before getting in himself. Without a word--it would have been impossible to speak properly without spitting out the pearl--he shut the door and waited for her to go.

--

He wasn't quite sure what he was hearing. It all seemed too bizarrely coincidental to be true--but if it wasn't, how would she have recognized the photograph on the poster, in the first place?

As for Diederik, he was vaguely beginning to get an idea now of why he'd been stabbed. He was 'with her sister', she said? What kind of 'with'? If they were together (and he wouldn't have been surprised; it'd already been proven that no coincidence was too good to be true), then... He'd kidnapped the man's blind girlfriend and then slept with his mother figure, so what the hell else could he expect? Not that he'd known that he'd wronged his attacker in this manner, of course; for the Dutchman...it was just another Tuesday. There were dozens of other people out there who likely would have enjoyed the opportunity to get the same vengeance for their loved ones.

But he'd paid his due with the gray-haired stranger, so in his opinion, they were even, now. Leef en laat leven.

Crumpling the paper and tossing it aside with the others, he let go of her and cast some light on the situation, "He did stab me. You said he was with your sister--does he care about her? In that case, I wronged him twofold." He wouldn't bother saying how. It was obvious. "Don't you see? I'm the villain, here. I got what was coming to me. I don't know about all that," he gestured at the discarded claims of murder, "But maybe it was a similar situation: he did what was right, even if it was a crime."

It sure felt damn stupid, wasting his precious few words playing devil's advocate for a guy that had stabbed him in the eye. But he wasn't going to let her be both distraught and in denial.
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Sun Sep 04, 2011 9:27 pm

"I don't think I want to know how everything works." He stated after a moment of thought. He wasn't going to say so, but he didn't think that was what life was for, knowing everything right out of the gate-- not even things that made sense or could even be seen (again, of course he wouldn't say so--). What really impressed him was that she could hold it all in her mind and not be crushed by the weight of it all. He was so simple, but there was too much of her he had yet to figure out.

It caught him off-guard when he felt weight on him just out of the blue, but he realized it couldn't have been anyone but her. It seemed, more now than ever, her words affected him. She loved him. She knew everything there was to know about everything. And she chose him... after the fact.

"Jealous?" Quite the opposite. He loved to see her love things, for for one to say they love things they must know what love means. And... not that he knew, but he figured she hadn't known it before him. He would have said so, but he wouldn't ever say it as eloquently as it was in his head. So instead, he teased right back. "I don't know. The universe seems to have alot more going for it than I do." The truth, in his opinion. Leaning down to kiss her ear, he concluded, "I guess I wouldn't be surprised but don't think I'd let you go." He tried to quickly wrap his arms around her waist, but ended up with his hands at odd places thanks to the dark before they finally found their bearings. Laughing it off, he apologized, "There's no light in here-- I can't really see." He said it before he could think about it-- wasn't this the way she saw things?

-----------------

She laughed-- the first time in the while she'd been around him. Things were returning to normal. "Be careful what you wish for." Although his complete aversion to the most human of things was likely a real psychological issue and might need to be resolved by a psychologist (after all, he needed to find a wife, she wouldn't be around to provide every (almost every) female role in his life forever)... it was endearing. He was scheming and cold and bitter and insulting-- with the mentality of a seven-year-old.

He would no doubt find out how Itakshir really was soon enough-- probably sooner than that, even-- and possibly hate him even more. But at least she would have the satisfaction of seeing him blindly face off with an adversary that had almost none of the qualities he'd armed himself for. She tried to imagine the Ainu playing chess-- well, she tried, and she couldn't.

It was odd that he was still silent on the drive back... but satisfying either way. The more he chased this idea of a fearless genius to its grave, the more shocked he would be at the truth (well, he whatever was closest to shocked in his repertoire of expressions).

"I don't have time to entertain you, I have work to do." She explained as she pulled in to the back of the carnival. "We'll figure out where you're staying later; you're at his mercy when it comes to that. Just take your things to my work room." She got out, and after making sure he could carry his own luggage (not like she would be able to pick up his slack) she led him to the sewing and mending room. "Don't touch anything, there's needles everywhere." If he pricked himself with one he would ask for a popsicle. And she would tell him no, it's for bruises only and really, for customers. To which he would find some way to complain for the rest of the day; 'I had a gaping wound and Franze said she couldn't care less when I told her I was in danger of bleeding out.'

----------------

Vesna was about to protest that no, Cosim couldn't have stabbed him, he was too sensitive. And she couldn't have been sure how close he was to her sister but she could bet all her money (rather, his money, now) that she didn't deserve him. "I don't want to talk about her." She mumbled pettily, calming down. She was still armed to protest though, say that she would pack up (what did she have, really?) and leave if he didn't say she had a point. To say that Cosim was bad was to say that she had done bad. She would admit to alot, but not to those mistakes.

Yet now two opposing forces were pressing on her mind and she wasn't sure what to say. "He did what he was supposed to..." She began, but couldn't accept Diederik's admission of wrong. "But he shouldn't have done it to you. His priorities were out of order-- that's all, she messed with his head." She was smart, she could do it.

Unable to express much more, she wrapped her arms around him and pressed her face into his shirt, getting rid of tears that were produced before but were only falling then and smiled sadly. "No... you're the hero... someone else is the villain." The main character never fell in love with the villain-- and she wanted to fall in love with him. But the love story had so many plot holes. He was almost like a knight to her, if they existed beyond the silver screen. Perhaps she and Sonya were the same in that regard, though she didn't know and had all but excommunicated her sister from her life.

Almost exasperated with him over something she had brought up, she mumbled into the fabric, "Forget about it," Easier for her than for him-- she planned on it, actually. "I just want real clothes and bread and then we can go back to bed..." In just one room life was simple. In one bed life was even simpler. In one very small bed life was only what could fit there-- and it was he and her and nothing else.

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Mon Sep 05, 2011 12:50 am

"The universe doesn't hold me the way you do--" She was saying...until he made her squeak slightly in surprise from his misguided attempt to do exactly that. Relaxing once he'd righted himself, her small laugh joined in right along with his.

Was the room honestly dark? She guessed it must have been. Funny, she'd always imagined it to be bathed in light, for some reason--even though it had no way of being like that. It was strange what things she took for granted, in a way.

"We're on an equal playing field, then," she said, taking one of his hands in both of hers, putting his fingers to her face. "You'll have to learn me by touch."

--

He probably would have choked on the pearl if she'd suggested that he needed a wife and needed to get therapy so that he could procreate with said wife (which was, to his understanding, the only real drive behind sex). He had no desire for either, and honestly didn't know which sounded worse. Copulation was, in his honest opinion, one of the most off-putting necessary fuctions for animals--up there with things like the excretory system and the gag reflex.

The world would just have to do without little Piter, Jr's. It was probably better off for it, anyways.

He was, indeed, mulling over how to best deal with his newest foe, on the way back home. It was a good cover-up for his silence, as he rolled the treasure around his tongue. He wasn't really planning on doing much with it--maybe sell it, or keep it to remember fondly how well he'd paid back Ditya.

For the most part, he'd only stolen it because he anticipated getting an amusing reaction from Franze. According to his definition of 'amusing', anyways.

Setting his things down where indicated (ugh, shouldn't there have been people to do this, for him? This was low-class work--), he paused for a moment, apparently in thought. Then, reaching into his mouth, he pulled it out, giving her just the briefest glimpses of white before it was cupped in his hand, effectively shielded from her viewpoint. Height had it's advantages, sometimes.

"Oh dear, how very unfortunate: I seem to have lost a tooth. That merits a popsicle, surely."

--

He didn't say anything when she embraced him and refuted his claim of wrongdoing. He thought he wasn't going to let her be deluded, but...he wasn't sure if he wanted to disillusion her, on this point. At best, he was an anti-villain. Or, really, a punch clock villain. He didn't do bad things because he had no morals or no other choice; he did them for money. Plain and simple.

And in that sense, maybe he was worse than someone who just had a hankering for evil.

She told him to forget about it--he could have told her that that was what he wanted her to do, but whatever. It was easier not to say anything, sometimes. Relieved that the whole episode was over, he informed her, "You have to let go, first," before prying her off, gently. The sooner they got their errands done, the sooner they could go back to the inn.

Taking her hand in his, this time (and feeling slightly embarrassed for doing so), he lead her to where the tailor was supposed to be.

The door to the shop opened with a little ring of a bell (which he found somewhat obnoxious), and he held it open for her before ducking in, himself. The little man and woman working inside looked towards the two in unison, and both acquired similar expressions of surprise. It was not the average couple.

"Goedemorgen," he said gruffly, getting right down to business, gesturing to his face, "I just need something to cover this." He didn't want to say 'eyepatch'. It still sounded too ridiculous.

Looking towards her, he waved with his hand, as if to say 'have at it'. He didn't know what she needed or wanted, after all.
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Mon Sep 05, 2011 11:54 am

He rested his forehead on her shoulder in embarrassment. "If the universe could, it would do a better job." It was nice to know that a rather insignificant guy like him was running circles around the universe. Then again, how many women would say they loved the universe?

But really the real teller was that he had admitted to stabbing out someone's eye only hours ago yet now they could be playful. If he wasn't so deluded over morals himself, he would have worried about all she was overlooking.

At the moment he was about to be preoccupied with touching a woman, so there was really no room to worry about anything if he was. "'Learn by touch'...? Don't I do that too much already?" He joked, and lightly traced her features with his fingers-- over her nose, her eyelashes, and the burns on her cheek. "And you're too beautiful to not be seen, you know." She probably didn't, she probably never thought so, no matter how much he said it.

----------

She had only almost sat down to work and already he was making trouble. "What...?" His hand could have been empty, but she saw a flash of something white in it before it closed. He couldn't have lost a tooth, he wasn't punched in the mouth. And she figured he would have been more than distraught at a loss that made him look less than he usually was.

And she wouldn't give him a popsicle for it, either way.

"Open your hand, let me see." She ordered, finally having to try and pry his fingers away. Barely able to get them away, she saw the edge of the white thing, and it certainly didn't look like a tooth. It was round like a marble, and pretty big-- iridescent, expensive looking.

A pearl? "Where did you get a pearl?" She looked up at him incredulously (touching her own jewelry, just to make sure), letting his hand close back in on it (not wanting to touch it or the pearl anymore if it had been in his mouth--). Then, disdain. "It's not yours, is it?" She realized out loud. "I told you not to steal and you did." She had to know from whom, so she could drag him there to return it. But perhaps if she actually knew whom it belonged to she would be hesitant to even go herself.

-----------------

To her, it was that he had no other choice. No other choice like she had. Of course, she could work in other places-- an office secretary, a farm worker, a retail girl... she could probably even easily get married and become a housewife (though all were rare). But selling herself paid more than probably all of them combined and for her own security she told herself she had no choice.

Often she couldn't tell how he was feeling about her. He pulled her off without a word of comfort or affection, and her heart sank. Yet he took her hand and she just became utterly confused. How long could she keep throwing herself at a brick wall before she would give up?

The thought plagued her mind up until she was suddenly in the tailor's and put on the spot. "I... I need clothes." She said simply, turning to the little older woman. "Not fancy clothes. Is there a catalogue I can look at...?" The old woman scurried (or, what it seemed like to Vesna) over and pulled her aside with measuring tape. Bust, waist, hips, and an 'Oh, goodness...' from the old woman and it was done. It was a lie when she said she never got self-conscious. Around men she never gave a thought to how she looked. It was always the women that had something to say about it. So she could only wait for the catalogue to come while pondering exactly what the woman's interjection implied. Soon the book was brought, and she rifled past all the dresses it would be nice to have back before choosing her usual bandeau and shorts (the old woman huffed. Vesna decided she would never come back there again--) and sending the woman off to look for one in the right size. Usually the right size wasn't quite right enough, and still big in some places. Even if it was a tailor... she wasn't about to walk out still wearing nightclothes.

The old woman came back with the shorts, and a blouse she hadn't asked for, saying she couldn't sell her just the bandeau-- it would be unseemly. The blouse was cut for a much larger girl (it wouldn't have fit over her bust if it wasn't--), she said, but it could be fixed. Vesna declined. The last thing she wanted was to spend more time there, or cost Diederik more money, which would make him (in her current opinion) more despondent with her than he already was. She tried it all on in a back room, and snuck a cloth belt from a dress into her pocket to fix the blouse problem later (that'll teach the lady to say 'oh goodness' to her), declaring she was satisfied.

Turning the corner to find Diederik, she declared in a mumble, "I feel better." She would have wanted to ask him how it looked but... she had a feeling he wouldn't say anything to really lift her spirits. "She says it's five dollars." Hopefully not too much.

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:31 am

"No, you haven't learned enough, I'm sure," she corrected gently. He felt her all the time, in different ways, but he likely didn't memorize her the same way a blind person would have. She was sighted, too, once; she knew.

"You have three lines, here," she traced just under her own eyes, for reference. "And your nose was broken here...here...maybe here..." Again, she touched her own in the appropriate spots. He'd never really mentioned that it'd been broken at all, but she could feel it in the way it'd healed.

"Your eyes curve like this--" She traced it on the palm of his hand, then let hers rest in his, a leaf against a stone. She let it lay there, for a momemt, before smiling, with a hint of coquetry, "I'd rather feel too good to not be touched, I think."

--

If he'd been the laughing type, he might have laughed when she checked her own jewelry--as if he'd seriously want it. As it was, his voice took on it's usual tone when he was amused. ...Which was to say, no tone at all. But an expert might have been able to pick out the slight smug drawl that seeped it's way into his vocal chords, on such occassions.

"Of course it isn't mine; what would I want with this, honestly?" As if she'd been the one to put it in his hand, and he just couldn't fathom her reasoning behind it.

Pocketing it, he sat down and opened his suitcase, selecting one of the few books he'd salvaged, as he spoke so casually, "Ditya gave it to me, he just isn't aware of it, yet. It's a gift, since I didn't have the chance to see the fruits of my earlier scheme, with my own eyes."

He planned on it, though. Eventually. But he was, as Franze herself had made clear, a spoiled child. And if he wasn't allowed to see the Dutchman suffer at this very moment, then it only made sense that he should have to suffer all the more for it.

"And if you must know, I couldn't possibly resist the opportunity." He never could.

Piter selected the Holy Bible and smiled inwardly at it's contents. He came from the Saintly City of upheaval and assassinations and a bitter, bitter winter. Maybe he was a saint, himself. Maybe it was he who should and could have spilt the blood and then been immortalized in mosaic in the church built to cover up the stain.

Or maybe he really was losing his mind, a bit. It was kind of starting to amuse him.

--

Diederik could have reminded her that men had far more opportunities than women. Especially men who, despite losing all their wealth at one point, had the business know-how to reclaim their boat, a crew, and a small fortune. He could have quit this life, now, and done many other things. Could have done many other things, and probably just as prosperously. But he didn't. He didn't even try.

He was just not a man who was very good at acting like a nice person, even when he wasn't intending to be the opposite.
While Vesna was off with the old woman to be fitted, it was the old man who tended to the seafarer. As per usual, Diederik was in no mood for conversation.

"You'll be wanting an eyepatch, then, sir?"

"..............Yes."

"Is there any particular style you're interested in."

"...No."

The 'no' was so final and brusque that it was probably all the tailor could do to totter away to go find his measuring tape. The rest of the fitting was handled in silence. Which the customer appreciated, despite that huis expression suggested otherwise.

As the correct length of strap was being sewn onto the patch, he stood up and had a look at Vesna's new outfit. ...Was that it? She honestly didn't want anything else? Well, he wasn't going to complain. Five dollars wasn't too bad.

...At least, that's what he told himself (repeatedly) as he paid for both it and the eyepatch.

Putting it on and not looking at himself in the mirror to check how it looked (he had the feeling it would just make him feel slightly sickened), he exited the shop...presumably to go get breakfast next, provided there were no other mishaps along the way. One of the wanted posters seemed to wink at him from one of the shop's windows.

Glancing at Vesna again, it struck him that he probably ought to say something. But what? When was the last time he had to compliment a woman's appearance? ...Never? He began to say something, but, with nothing to say, he ended up going to his pipe again, fumbling with the matches in fruatration.
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Thu Sep 08, 2011 3:53 pm

He barely could see where she was indicating, but it all seemed right. Almost too right. How did she have the time with him to learn all that? He found himself speechless for a moment, wondering what exactly it meant. Did she adore him so much that she'd memorized his features by touch?

"You know why I have lines under my eyes...?" He squeezed her waist and whispered in her ear, "You tire me out."

But he would never (could never) say no. He fumbled in the dark for a moment (hopefully she didn't notice) before he found her shoulders and traced the insides of her arms. "You feel like silk to me, you know? That's what I remember when I'm away from you." His hands ran over her thin fingers and onto her thighs, where he pressed his fingers into the fabric and dragged it up as his hands traveled to her waist, where they left it to crawl up to her chest. "These," he chuckled lightly into her neck. "I love these the best. ...Aside from loving you, of course."

----------------

Of course. Of course he would. If the pearl belonged to anyone else, she wouldn't have cared. She would have laughed at his antics. But it belonged to Van Der Linde, who she knew was dangerous, if not only for his size and demeanor. And though what he stole was small, Piter wouldn't have taken any small trinket. She didn't know how a lack of a pearl would perhaps ruin the dutchman's life-- but Piter would have known, or else he wouldn't have taken it. Not only did she not want him to be most likely maimed, she didn't want to be caught in the crossfire-- she was already on the man's bad side (probably because she was so short--).

"We're taking that back." She held her hand out for it after snatching the book from his hands, and, after seeing what it was, tossed it into a pile of torn clothing. "I told you not to steal-- I expressly told you that!" Did he get some kind of joy out of disobeying her-- no, she knew the answer to that. Maybe if she hadn't told him not to, he wouldn't have thought of doing it at all.

She stood, not about to wait for the giant to find them. "Give me the pearl. We're leaving." She was less than enthused. Already she had to clean up his mess, and was tired and burned out as it was. And what if she fell asleep? What would he find to ruin, then? "We'll give it back, say it... Somehow fell into your clothes, and that's where you found it." Completely unbelievable but... what else could she do?

------------------------

"You don't look so bad." She mumbled on their way down the road, preoccupied with fastening her blouse to her waist with the tie she'd stolen. "Just a little sad. And you shouldn't be, because you don't look bad."

Not that she was expecting him to say anything to her-- but she'd only known him for a week, she shouldn't have been able to expect anything. It had increasingly been bothering her-- that she so wanted to fall in love with this man, the only one that really seemed to fit with her. "Can I ask you something?" As usual, she didn't wait for affirmation. "I'm not exactly sure what... What this is-- but I know what I'd like it to be." She gathered her thoughts for a moment, unfamiliar with being tongue-tied. "I want to be in love with a man-- it wouldn't matter if he loved me or not." She supposed being loved wasn't as fulfilling as someone like her actually being able to love. "I want to take care of him; sing to him when he's tired at night, and make love to him when he's not." Not many men she knew gave a care about anything she said. She was irrelevant but for only one thing. "I wouldn't care if he used me, as long as I was in love. I want to do things for him that matter. I want to matter, for once..." She got quiet. He never spoke to her-- what was she supposed to think? He could have hated her, and was providing things for her so she would just finally go. "And... I don't know what matters to you. She was allowed allowed to sleep with a stranger, but she wasnt allowed to be asleep with a stranger. "It's stupid, but..." She didn't bother to finish, because that was what she was.

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Sat Sep 10, 2011 2:01 pm

"I hope you don't mind," she whispered right back, "If I give you a few more lines."

Gasping and humming at the appropriate times, she kissed him along the neck as he obliged her request.

It occured, in the back of her mind, that there was nothing preventing her from becoming pregnant. She figured, by this point, that if it hadn't happened already, it never would. Probably, the radiation had rendered her infertile, or something. It made her a little sad to think of, sometimes, but... It was probably for the best. In her condition, motherhood probably wouldn't be a great idea.

So, unfettered, she replied breathily, "You know what I love the most, aside from you?" Her kisses moved gradually southwards, as she proceeded to show him her eclectic tastes.

--

Continuing to stare for a moment at the space where his hand had previously been occupied, he glanced up at her and stated flatly, "I was reading that." Getting up, he retrieved the book, carefully folding some of the bent pages back into a flat position. If it'd been one of his most treasured books, he might have been seriously miffed.

"No, I don't think I'd like to offer myself up for the slaughter, thank you," he declined her order, "You see, I am still following one of your rules: I'm staying away from Ditya."

Surely, she couldn't think he'd agree to fess up just because she told him to. If he was prepared to give in that easily, he'd never have stolen the thing, in the first place. She needed to try a bit harder than that--what had begun as another shot at Diederik quickly turned into a test for his Austrian friend. How clever could she be, and how far could he push her?

"And I'm not convinced you really wouldn't like to see me get beaten to a pulp, with an excuse like that." He extracted the pearl from his pocket, holding it securely out of her reach, "This came off of the pendulum from his metronome. I highly doubt he'd believe it 'fell into my clothes'."

--

His pace slowed as she talked, until he stopped altogether. Forehead furrowed, he stared at the road (really, he wasn't actually looking at it), deep in thought, pipe held in place between solemnly pressed lips. 

When he finally did speak, he felt old...older than her by at least thirty years, and not just ten or so. Perhaps it was because to him, right now, she seemed too young to have her heart broken by some salty, skinflint, no-good sailor. And wouldn't that inevitably happen? He would have to leave, eventually, which would effectively be akin to dumping her.

He had a hard time keeping eye contact, for once.

"...I think you're putting your hopes on the wrong man," he informed her frankly, but with some gentleness. Holding his pipe in one hand, and her fingers in the other, he kissed the side of her face, his own just a little red, "But...I want you to stay, anyways. That's what matters to me, right now. I need time to figure out the rest."

Once again, he could truthfully admit he was doing the wrong thing, and then continued to do it. How did he justify this one? That she likely could get her hopes crushed anyways, so he might as well be the one doing the crushing? Why did he want her to give him a chance when he was the one who thought he didn't merit it? Was he really that greedy?

Straightening up, he resumed smoking, and added, mumbling around the stem of the pipe, "It's not stupid."
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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  DIDNEY WORL on Sat Sep 10, 2011 6:25 pm

It was disarming, for someone like him, to feel her disembodied touch and not see her. He was always alert, always vigilant, even at times like this (after all, all other times, he'd had to keep watch to make sure no one was approaching the truck--). But he supposed this was how she knew it all the time. But soon enough all of that left his mind, only to be replaced by blinding, heavenly nothingness.

Still, in the back of his mind, he had to remind himself to be gentle with her. It wasn't easy, but all the more important since he'd been informed of her condition. Hands accustomed to lead barbells were pressed to her hair and her chest, and his control over them seemed to diminish by the minute. A few times before he'd known she'd had bruises. It wasn't going to happen again.

Pulling her back up to him reluctantly, he had to get his thoughts together as well as his breathing. "I can't take that... we shouldn't do it..."

Anyone else would have advised him to find someone who could withstand the abuse of being a strongman's lover, but he loved her too much. He just hadn't learned to properly control himself for her, even when he wasn't hardly able to control his own anger.

It was for that reason and hers (wouldn't it have already happened?) that he'd thought a child wasn't in his best interest. Of course, that was when he thought he wouldn't be around long. But they'd talked about living somewhere else if they needed. That was the place to have a child, not here. But perhaps she simply couldn't. So he never mentioned it.

--------------------

Like shit he was reading the bible. She could feel the scowl form on her face with his loophole. So she had to say 'stay away from Diederik, including everything he's ever touched' just so that he wouldn't do something like this? She had a worse time with him than any mother with their child. Mostly because she couldn't drag him off to do anything-- she was the one who was the size of a child.

Or could she? She'd tossed Auguste out with the tactic, and Piter wasn't immune to pain. She reached up, pinching his ear and pulling him down. "If he wasn't there then, he's probably not there now." And it wasn't like he would have left his door open-- her Russian brat had broken in. "You're going to get back in there and put it back. Or else I'll tell him you took it and wash my hands of it all." He wasn't one to learn the consequences unless he suffered them. ...and even then, it seemed 50/50.

"Are you going to walk to the car or will I have to drag you there?"

---------------

When he stopped, she wondered if he would say anything at all. She really wished he would speak more... But maybe it would ruin the novelty of hearing those few words when they appeared. She couldn't keep the smile off her face, regardless of what he was saying.

Surprisingly, what he was saying wasn't as awful as she'd first thought. She stood rigidly still, complete with smile, for the small kiss, as of she was afraid it would disappear if she made any sudden movements. "If I kept waiting for another tall man who loves the ocean like I do, I think I'd be waiting forever." She informed him softly.

As far as she was concerned, him leaving wouldn't be a problem. She wouldn't have to worry about it all interfering with her job if he only returned once in a while. As long as mystique existed, he would be there for business. As long as she stayed a prostitute she could continue to see him. An odd arrangement, but it worked, to her mind. What prostitute didn't want to have some man love them, instead of being just a passing night for any other man to forget later once he returned to his family?

She reclaimed his hand, and moved a bit forward, not able to actually pull him due to the burns, and asked, smiling, "Why do you keep stopping, I'm starving."

As they walked, she kicked a large pebble ahead of her. "When you go, tell me where you're landing at." Almost tripping while trying to corral the rock, she continued. "I'll write to you. ...I'm not so good at English, letters, you know?" Her Cyrillic was an elegant, swirling art piece. Her English looked like a 2nd grader had been trying too hard and forgot which way vowels went. "And photos." She added. "I'll send you photos, Dimitrie has a camera." Maybe since he'd lost half his eyesight... "I think you won't remember half of me if you aren't looking, anyways."

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Re: Judgement Day [Vesna\Private]

Post  nahn-SEK-wuh-tuhr on Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:00 am

She, on the other hand, was never totally aware of the bruises. Of course, she knew she'd occasionally feel sore in certain spots afterwards, but being unaware of her own condition, it didn't bother her as much. Especially not during the heat of the moment. So he could be a little rough--so, what? Maybe she liked it, that way. ...Or maybe the pleasure and the passion just masked the pain too much, to be noticed.

Anyone else would have advised her, for her own safety, to find a lover who couldn't inadvertently abuse her. Who couldn't really potentially hurt her, medical condition or not. But she loved him too much, and, in a sense, could also not control herself.

Similarly struggling to speak through her heaving chest, she only had the breath to say one thing, as she began pulling his clothes off--the same thing she said to him, the first time: "Make love to me."

--

Anything that had been even remotely amusing about the situation vanished instantly, once she pinched his ear. He nearly dropped the pearl in shock-- How...how dare she manhandle him!? He'd never been punished in his life, and especially not physically. (Unless one counted the black eye as punishment.) The way he bullied his governesses and tutors and maids, as a child, suggested that it was he who did the punishing. Consistently.

But now that the tables had been turned, he was too surprised to know how to respond. For once, he had no wise-assed comments to make; she had effectively shut him up.

Struggling to keep his balance while being pulled downward so awkwardly, he wanted to push her hand away, but was hesitant to. What if she ripped his ear off? Was that even possible? He didn't think so, but he wasn't sure if he was prepared to risk it--he was no expert in physical injuries, after all, and good ears were rather hard to come by.

He was about to open his mouth to say something, but at that moment, a third voice filled the space where he should have said something.

"Franze?" Itakshir appeared, expecting to find only her, and instead stumbling upon yet another (male) stranger. He couldn't help but laugh uncertainly at the scene he was confronted with--what was this, even? This man had hair that suggested he was at least somewhat old, but she was pulling his ear like he was a child. The Ainu didn't have the slightest clue what to make of it.

--

Going along easily when she indicated to continue walking, he said nothing to her when she talked of exchanging letters, save for a quiet, "Ja."

His handwriting was strangely small, compared to the hand doing the writing. Small, neat, and lacking of any flourish, making even his most personal letters seem businesslike. That wasn't what was on his mind, though.

The thought of returning to the ship filled him, for the first time in his life, with a measure of dread. Particularly in the past few years, he almost stopped enjoying being on land, altogether. But now, he was thinking of ways to postpone his departure back to his beloved sea. It would have to happen eventually, though. When it did, he would make a point to send her things he found on his travels. Pretty things, from faraway places. Maybe to help replace all the pretty things she'd lost.

And photos... "I'll send you some, too. Photos. Of the places I go to." The beaches, the jungles, the villages full of exotic people that all disliked him. (Oh well, they would still look nice in pictures.) Things most people in this lifeless country could never even dream of.

Finding a bakery on the way, he purchased some bread (whether that was really what she wanted or not, it was what he liked to have--albeit usually with soft cheese, but the cheese in this country tasted like garbage) so that they could get back 'home'. Once at the inn, he was going to unlock his mangled door, only to find, to his surprise--

"It's open," he stated aloud, clearly confused. There was no way he'd forget to lock it, so why...?

Going inside, half-expecting to catch a thief in the act, he set the bread on the table, eyebrows furrowed. Everything seemed in order, but he couldn't be sure... Although he kept his money on him all the time, there were still valuables in his trunk. Immediately going to check it, the missing pearl managed to completely escape his notice.
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