She turns on the little PINpoint device she picked up from one of the vending machines, looking straight at it like she's being filmed, as she's the others do.
"My name's Raven. I'm not sure how I got here, but I'd like to find the way back out again. Can anyone help me?
And um, this is a long shot I know, but- Charles? If you're here, could you please stop chatting up girls with green eyes and come find me?"
[ooc: Come help me work on Raven's voice please?! :D]
Lucas North always lands on his feet - eventually - but Alyosha Tarasov can't tell if this is falling or landing he's doing right now, nearly a year after his arrival. In the back of his head, he's marking time like he's back in prison and he doesn't have another eight fucking years to go AWOL in. There won't be any prisoner trading this time; Harry can't get him out of this. He knows that most people come and go, that the odds for once were stacked up in his favour and still somehow he's getting screwed here.
He can get out, is the thing. He can get out, he just can't get home.
For the past ten months, he's built a whole world around a cover story he made up on the spot; his tattoos offer an explanation for where he came from that he doesn't dispute, just quietly establishes himself as legitimate now, on the straight and narrow. His last girlfriend was from Boston, died of brain cancer while being treated at Dana-Farber; he hasn't dated since, but he's mending, getting back on track with work and running a branch of his private security company out of Xanadu itself. It turns a profit, disconnected from the mothership for obvious reasons that sidestep the fact there is no mothership and there is no Alyosha bloody Tarasov. He's got all the requisite IDs, though, and maybe he's just the right kind of paranoid to not want people casually knowing which Moscow he belongs to; it fits the person he supposedly is.
(It fits the person he really is, too, 'paranoia as a lifestyle choice'. Professionally sound philosophy.)
In Xanadu, there's a small, retro cinema - red velvet, balcony seating that features a bar and restaurant upstairs if you pay extra for the gold tickets - that's currently featuring film festival shorts from around the multiverse, and he catches a late showing of Skindeep after sighting a poster of the familiar leading lady on his way out of a business lunch earlier in the day. No pomegranates, he remembers, rolling the silver coin she gave him over his knuckles; he's just superstitious enough to have kept it, not quite enough to think it means anything. It's just time watching itself go by, and he has plenty of that as he heads back out into the cooler late evening air, dropping his ticket stub in the trash and tucking his hands in his coat pockets.
He makes a beeline for a nocturnally-inclined coffee shop and lifts his hand in silent greeting to the young man behind the register; they know his face and his order here, which as knowing him goes is good enough for government work.
An upturned newsboy cap rests next to him on the ledge, and beside that is a sign. Well, it's a piece of cardboard folded over so it'll stand up, but for all intents and purposes it's a sign, okay, because he wrote a thing on it. The thing reads as follows:
portrait (of you?): $1
subject of your choice: $2
(no backgrounds plz)
Fish is wearing sunglasses up on his head, as is the norm, but he is not smoking because he figures he looks more approachable that way. If chewing on the skin beside his fingernails and sort of spacing out can be considered approachable, anyway.
In Xanadu, there's this garden - quiet, a little apart from the daily grind of the rest of the city. It's a memorial garden and as such it has its fair share of statues, some notable and some less so. The name of one of these reads Gates Enfys Keel Eddings above a simple inscription and two dates, and this isn't the way Enfys imagined coming face to face with this particular phenomenon of interdimensional travel.
She knows the theory; she's been collecting atlases for months now, tracking geographical and political variations between worlds like her own and knowing, in theory, that maybe in some of those there might be girls with her name and her face living their own lives. (Dying their own deaths.)
This woman was older than she is (would've been younger if they'd met at corresponding periods in the timeline- her notebook is in her hand but she isn't writing anything down); she's never devoted that much thought to her own mortality, but it strikes her that thirty-eight is further than she's ever envisioned herself getting.
Enfys has been sitting beside the statue of Mrs Eddings for about half an hour when she starts digging around in her tote for the camera she knows she put in there the other day.
hes been missing for like a week. maybe. i dont know. time is weird. hes not answering his phone. actually, someone took his phone from him and gave it to someone else. so.
hes not here. i know. i looked.
hes not in the city either. i asked around and no one has seen him.
idk what to do.
pretend this qas a question..
It's a hushed tone that comes over any communication device, the cell phones, the iPads, the PINpoints. It's the tone of someone desperately trying not to sound frantic and failing.
"Look, I wouldn't normally ask this and I swear I'll pay you back somehow, but I gotta get outta here. Fast."
Mabel pauses. In the background it sounds like something's scratching on brick, the little claws of a hundred rats. No, wait, it just sounds like someone's fingernail, strangely loud.
"But I got - I got to get out of here, and - and I can't pay the bail money. I know he's - "
Click. Click. Click. Rats scrambling over pavement. Fingernails again. The sound of too many people breathing, fast and loud.
" - And I'm supposed to be on the phone with a lawyer, or something - "
Gurgling. Something in the far distance laughs.
"I really need help. Please?"
She's been and gone a few times - spent ten entire minutes stepping back and forth through the (obsolete wardrobe) door, feeling a bit like the long lost possibly drunk Pevensie sister - and tested its reality in as many ways she could think of. The reliability of empirical evidence depends on the reliability of your own ability to assess it; she's not sure how scientific her method is, carrying a jagged piece of pavement in her pocket all day, the weight of it distracting her from a lesson, and going back to where she found it to see if it still fits.
'Ilde Decima Pevensie' would be only slightly less ridiculous than her own name, but C.S. Lewis probably never saw fit to include a bar like Stigmata in his Narnia. ...or any bars, for that matter. This is where she ends up almost inevitably, trailing away from the agora and flicking her pocket watch open and closed, restlessly. She makes a note of the time as it passes; it will be at precisely the same time as it was when she left, when she goes home.
There's not really a way to figure that one out with pieces of pavement, so she makes herself a drink and writes the time down.
After a moment, she marks one tally next to it.
. . . This place is still pretty surreal, just saying.
For as mundane as most of their world seems to be, that hasn't stopped Richard and Delilah Vasko from having some problems with the doors in their house. Specifically, the closet door of Richard's Workroom, which is really the single most inconvenient door to open to a place it shouldn't.
...Other than the bathroom door, really.
( the trouble with doorsCollapse )
And so, twenty minutes later, there's a new couple strolling the streets of Xanadu—a six foot man too thin, pale, and tired-looking to possibly be healthy, and his bright-eyed, downright bouncy little wife who examines all the shops and buildings with a growing sense of fresh adventure.
“Oh, isn't this fun! What a nice city, look at this, it looks so much bigger than Columbus! Oh, Richard, I wonder what the art scene is like, maybe if the door keeps opening to this place you could get involved in it! We should look for galleries!”
He nods patiently, restraining a mild sigh, and digs around for his cigarettes while they pause on a street corner.
“Yes, darling, perhaps I could, and perhaps we should. But I think the first order of business is really just figuring out where it is we are.”
Yeah, you know. The little details.
1. cheap as fucking possible (new yorks out)
2. plenty of cover for me and my roommate, who are allergic to that whole sun thing you know how it goes
3. plenty of fuckable strangers
that last one is really fucking important. where do yall think we should move, xanadians?
...or xanaduians. xanaduese? whatever.