Peas in a pod

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by redblood, May 2, 2015.

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  1. “It's strange being here with you. I hardly know you. But...sometimes it feels like we're the same person born into two different worlds.” - Marie Lu

    Time was standing still, or at least it seemed to do so. The clock didn't move an inch even though the batteries were fully charged, the wind had stopped moving the branch against the window and a bird that had been about to slam into the glass was now completely frozen in the air. This however was just an illusion. Elise didn't even realize she was doing it. Sometimes it just happened. Other times she was fully aware. It was first when she looked at the clock for the third time that she realized it wasn't moving.

    "Oh no." She mumbled as she let her power rest and finally could see the time. Realizing she would be late if she didn't hurry, Elise rushed to change clothes and get her shoes on. She didn't want to go out as she had begun to feel slightly paranoid. She had been in the same place for two months already. What if he had found out about her whereabouts. What if he had sent people after her already. She shuddered. No, he hadn't found her. Not yet. She had been extremely careful and made sure no mutant or human would figure her out.

    In the last second, Elise noticed that her pocket was empty. "Oops, almost forgot." She ran back inside to get the pendant her mother once had given to her. It always made her feel safe. She fast pushed it down into her pocket and ran out. She did need money to live, so she took any temporary job she could get. She refused any permanent employment as that would force her to stay in the form of the same person for a long time. It was far too dangerous. Today her shape was that of a rather short girl with long red hair and green eyes. The hair was brushing softly on her chest. Even though it only was an illusion, she could make that illusion seem as real as it needed to be. The only part she couldn't seem to get down properly was smell and taste. Those were dead giveaways. Though normal humans rarely picked up on it. They just saw what they wanted to see. Mutants on the other hand, those who knew that other mutants might be there messing with their minds, was more likely to keep their eyes open for anything odd. That included Elise herself.

    As she had gotten halfway to her new temporary workplace, she heard some commotion from nearby. Slightly worried and curious she couldn't help but move towards the noise and the growing gathering of people. A house was on fire. For a moment she wondered if she should call 911, but the idea fast left her mind. People were already making calls, and they were most likely already on their way. It was hard to just leave though. She couldn't do anything to help, but it seemed so cruel to just turn around and go about her day as if nothing had happened. Somehow she ended up standing there for quite some time. As the firefighters started rolling in however and it seemed as if all the humans were out of the building, Elise decided that it was time to leave.

    #1 redblood, May 2, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2015
  2. “Lives are snowflakes - unique in detail, forming patterns we have seen before, but as like one another as peas in a pod (and have you ever looked at peas in a pod? I mean, really looked at them? There's not a chance you'd mistake one for another, after a minute's close inspection.)” - Neil Gaiman

    Having just gotten to town by the public bus Xan looked around, yawning as the lack of proper sleep was understandable, still it was one of the better nights of sleep as of yet. Adjusting the bag over hir shoulder the teen walked away from the public terminal and further into town, picking a route at random. Running a hand through hir short-cropped light-brown hair to half-comb and half-style it a glance at hir reflection on a store window told hir that it would do.

    Scoping out for a public restroom so ze could change clothes there was soon fewer stores and more residential buildings along the route ze walked. As it transitioned from concrete to wood and brick buildings more of the city's character started to show. Taking a note of some houses Xan made sure to remember both street name and number in case ze wanted a closer look later.

    The plans were soon shelved away in favor for the current events that caught hir attention. A crowd had gathered to watch the burning inferno of a house fire. Lips quirking into a satisfied smile like a cat who had just eaten the canary Xan casually joined the crowd of curious onlookers.

    Experienced glances gave an insight to where wallets were kept, quick and deft hands smoothly liberated them from their distracted owners and the act of a concerned and curious teen covered for hir constant moving about. With no close encounters, avoiding the more savvy ones and utilizing the years of experience the teen had soon amassed maybe four or five wallets.

    As the firefighters had safely evacuated the last victims of the fire Xan was now right next to a short girl with fiery red hair. With the crowd moving the brunette got pushed into the shorter girl. "Gah! Sorry." Still, while apologizing the young thief couldn't resist the chance given, so ze picked the girl's pocket, finding the chain of a necklace. Quickly stuffing the chain into hir own the teen gave the girl a sheepish smile, seeming so genuine while doing something cold, light, almost honey-colored eyes looking into green.
  3. Even though all the people had been evacuated, the crowd still refused to leave, and probably grew bigger for every minute. Getting out of it was a chore to say the least. As Elise tried to push her way out, she got pushed right into another person.

    "No, it was my fault. I should have been more careful." Elise apologized herself after the short haired girl had done her part. It was just common courtesy. No one would lay the blame on the other person. Though in this case it was certainly not their fault. It wasn't even the fault of the person who pushed her. Everything had been an accident. The real fault lied in human nature. The curiosity they all shared that made them come to such disturbing scenes and watch people either suffer or being rescued. Sometimes those two went hand in hand.

    As fast as her eyes met the other girl's, she averted them. Somehow it felt dangerous to look a stranger in the eyes. Why she did not know. It wasn't like anyone could recognize her on her appearance alone. Except if they could read her mind of course. That was another loophole. Damn all the loopholes that could make her powers completely useless. "Sorry about bumping into you." She finished her sentence before trying to push her way through the crowd again. This time it wasn't as hard as the police finally had arrived and started to wave people away from the scene.

    "I wonder if I'll still have a job when I get there." She mumbled to herself, finally remembering that she had been in a hurry that morning. Oh well, it wasn't like it was hard for her to find small jobs. One day of no work wouldn't kill her. It didn't take long though before she once again stopped caring for the job that might or might not still be open for her. Her hand had slipped in her pocket out of habit, but nothing was there. Her pendant was gone. Had she dropped it? Elise's heart started to beat rapidly. How could she have dropped it? She had never dropped it before. For a moment she lost control. The ground was shaking, buildings were falling, the world turned dark. Then she heard peoples horrified screams and she put herself together. The illusion disappeared and the few people that had been close enough to get dragged into her illusion looked shocked around themselves, not able to understand what had just happened.

    Elise turned around and ran back. She had to find her necklace. It had to lie on the street somewhere. She would search every inch of the path she had taken that morning if she had to.
  4. Thinking nothing of the shared courtesy Xan nodded and turned. Walking away from the scene Xan left with a casual pace, now that the police had their attention on chasing away civilians it was more important to get away instead of checking the loot. Weaving through the crowd and ducking into a small side street it was finally some moments of peace.

    Pulling on some thin gloves Xan got to work. Going through the wallets the young teen took out the coins and bills, counting the amounts as ze worked. Taking out a pack of napkins Xan made sure to wipe every surface that ze touched, intent on leaving no trace behind. The cleaned out wallets were put in a plastic bag after being wiped, the money moved over to the depths of Xan's bag and soon the teen could look at what ze had swiped from the girl.

    Looking at the trinket Xan clicked hir tongue in mild annoyance, the silver pendant held the characteristic '925' marking giving it some value, at the size of a thumbnail you could almost hope there would be much to gain, except there were no gems and the engravings could possibly make it recognizable. "Can't they decide if they want it to be generic crap or not?" Grumbling ze stuck the necklace back in hir pocket and headed for the nearby police station ze had noticed on hir walk.

    Seeing that their attention were on other matters Xan simply walked past, hir casual style of army pants and loose hoodie contrasting with the more feminine features of hir face making the ambiguity even more of a reality than if Xan had dressed purely macho or feminine.

    Pulling out the clear plastic bag with the wallets from the pocket on the hoodie Xan dropped it by the door and moved on, not lingering any longer than necessary now that the loose ends were tied. In the space of a few minutes Xan had now gotten a few blocks away, ducking into yet a side street Xan stretched and mused softly to hirself. "Perhaps some breakfast now?"
  5. "You can't be here right now ma'am." A patrolman said as he saw Elise running around too close to the still burning building. The smoke was currently being sent into another direction by the wind, but who knew when those things could change. It still smelled quite horribly though. "This area needs to be evacuated until the fire is under control." He then continued to explain.

    Elise gave him an annoyed glare. She could just turn herself invisible for his eyes, but then he would go around talking about ghosts which certainly would put attention on her the next time she was seen in the form she had currently taken. "Please, I think I dropped my necklace and I need to find it. It is extremely important to me." She begged.

    The policeman scratched his head and sighed slightly. "You still can't stay here ma'am." He started. "I'll keep a lookout for a necklace and if I find something I'll leave it at the police stations lost and found department. If it's here, then you will just have to pick it up at the station later." He proceeded to explain the way to the police station and told her that some of his colleagues already were on their way there, and they might have picked it up themselves if they saw it. It was common for people to drop things during such commotions. Most of it was found and returned to the owner within twenty four hours. In such a small and friendly town, people tended to look out for each other and return things they found on the ground to their owners if they could.

    Elise didn't care to wait until later. There was a slim chance that someone already would have brought it in to the station, and she wanted to check immediately. Once she came close though, she noticed a strange figure leaving off a small bag outside the door. Curious she used her powers so she would not be seen by anyone close by as she went up to the bag to take a look. There were five wallets in that bag. On further inspection she noticed there were credit cards in the wallets, but no loose money. That was rather suspicious. Usually one had at least some change. While she didn't want to doubt a stranger that seemingly tried to do her best and leave found items to the police, she had this feeling that there had to be more to it. Five wallets, no loose money, one day. How big was the chance that five people with only credit cards had such a bad luck as to loose their wallets at the same day? Almost non-existence she would say.

    Curious and suspicious she immediately started to follow the other person. She hid her appearance and the sound of her breath and feet with her illusions. That person might be innocent, and in that case Elise would just leave, but if the hooded figure truly had taken money out of those wallets, what else might they have taken from people? What could they have taken from Elise? She felt quite guilty for suspecting someone of thievery, but it wasn't like that stranger would ever know about it if they were innocent. She would just follow them for a little bit until she was sure. If she truly had dropped her pendant, she would just be able to get it back at the station later. Hopefully.
  6. Walking towards the city center Xan was looking at the different buildings yet again, making the same mental list that ze had done before noticing the fire. The houses were pretty nice and the ambience of the town was happy, peaceful... It almost made hir sick.

    As the walk progressed a small unsettled feeling brewed, like ze was being watched. Listening carefully there were no signs, casual glances at reflective surfaces gave no hints. Still, the feeling of being followed didn't abate and Xan grew tense.

    Stuffing hir hands in hir pockets ze walked into a small alleyway hoping the sudden change would bring some clues. Feeling the cold metal of the silver necklace in one pocket the teen almost pulled it out to check if there had been some sort of tracker or substance put on it. Shaking hir head tiredly ze wondered if hir usual paranoia was out of whack. Pulling hir hands out of the pockets a small piece of the necklace chain came with. Irked ze stuffed the escaping piece of metal back into the pocket. Food, that was what ze needed. Food.
  7. Elise noticed that the stranger was glancing around quite a bit. Did they know that she was there? Had she made a mistake? No, she was still keeping up her illusion. No one could see her. Maybe that person truly was a thief and now was worried they would get caught. Though there had been a few people before that had felt her presence when she made herself invisible. Some people were just extremely sensitive.

    Suddenly the person in front of her made a strange turn into an alleyway. Their hand was seeking something in their pocket, but in the end they seemed to change their mind and their hand came out empty. The pocket however was not empty. A small piece of a silver chain appeared and even though it was fast pushed back, it was more than enough time for Elise to realize what it was.

    Maybe she was overly emotional and acted too fast. After all, there were probably hundreds of people owning silver chains in that town, but logical thinking didn't seem to enter her mind at the moment. The ground started to shake around the stranger and suddenly the ground disappeared around them both. The only thing left was a small piece of a tall rock the stranger could stand on. Far beneath was an ocean of fire and the buildings had disappeared around them. Elise stopped concealing herself and was seemingly walking on air behind the thief.

    "Why do you have that necklace?" She asked, her voice shaking slightly. If it had been found, then why hadn't that person left it at the police station together with the wallets?
  8. As the scenery suddenly changed into one of horror, standing alone at the pinnacle on a rock. Turning quickly Xan faced the reason for this situation, a girl, the same girl whose pockets Xan had picked. Waiting with hir answer Xan's mind was running in circles. She was a mutant? What was her ability? Teleportation? No, you'd feel that. Addling with minds? Maybe not, an easier thing would be to just make hir hand over the necklace.

    While going over the options ze remained cautious, this girl had at least one power she could control, even while seeming distraught... Oh... "Why do you wanna know?" If that girl treasured the pendant it would be a safe bet to hand it over. Once it could be determined if she would attack once that had been done. Plus, figuring out the ability of the mutant girl was important too. Knowledge was a valuable power, especially now that being a mutant was even more dangerous. People knew now, the hiding had ended and the witch hunt had started.
  9. As the person turned around, Elise immediately recognized her. She had the same eyes as that person whom had bumped into her. Was it at that point she had stolen the necklace? Looking more carefully, the stranger seemed quite androgynous. It did make her wonder if it truly was a girl or not. Maybe a slightly feminine male?

    It was quite odd that she weren't freaking out at all. She was standing on a small rock over a sea of flames. Most people would be too frightened to even think. Could she be used to mutants? If so, was she one herself? Elise cursed at herself in her mind. She should have made a fake copy of herself instead of revealing her position. If that girl had mutant powers she might attack.

    "Because it belongs to me." Elise hissed. "Why do you have it?" She asked again quite impatient. If that girl refused to give it back, there wasn't much she could do other than to show as many unpleasant illusions as possible. Though if that strange girl realized that it was nothing but illusions, she might just ignore them until she was released from them. Nothing could stop Elise from just darkening the world for that stranger and then go forward and take the necklace out of her pocket while she can't see or feel a thing. For some reason though, she weren't able to think that far. In the heat of the moment it was hard to make a rational decision and an actual plan.
  10. Staying calm while standing at a pillar over burning seas while talking to girl standing mid-air was not one of Xan's most ideal situations. Staying calm was a chore, but the impatience from the girl in front of her was another lead. Slowly pulling out the necklace with the pendant from hir pocket Xan studied the girl in front of her.

    This was probably something that affected the mind, her powers had interfered with Xan somehow and ze didn't like it one bit. Cautiously Xan spoke while the pendant dangled in it's chain. "If I return this to you," a quick tug cause the pandant to jump and Xan caught it in hir hand, taking note of her reactions, "will you let me be?" Ze still wasn't sure if ze could take the girl in a fight, even illusions could be a lethal weapon if used proficiently. Maybe that was what her power was?
  11. Elise's eyes followed the pendant as it dangled from the stranger's hand. Indeed it was hers. Just seeing it seemed to calm her slightly as her shoulders relaxed, though as the pendant jumped up and was covered by the hand, she tensed up again.

    "If you give it back, I promise I won't hurt you. Just give it back, please." Her eyes stayed on the shut hand, almost as if she worried that the pendant would break if held too tightly. That was a ridiculous thought though. It would take much more than that to break it.

    The raging fire below seemed to calm down and instead laid as a lava river. It hadn't been a conscious choice to change the illusion. She reached out her hand so that it was just close enough for the other girl to reach her hand out and drop the necklace into Elise's palm.
  12. At the changes to the surroundings happened Xan grew even more certain that the power of the girl right in front of her had something to do with illusions. The scene had calmed at the presence of the pendant and it was growing steadily difficult to distrust the words of the girl in front of hir.

    Moing hir hand so it was above the girl's outstretched one ze answered simply: "Fine, as long as you keep to your word and dispel this illusion while you're at it." It was a gamble to call out the potential ability of the girl, but Xan had some aces up hir sleeve, the redhead in front of hir was not the only mutant present.
  13. Elise looked shocked at the girl for a moment. Had she already figured it out? It definitely made her believe that it was another mutant. While humans knew about their existence now, most of them weren't used to their powers and wouldn't be able to call out on it. She composed herself rather fast though and nodded.

    "Fine." It didn't seem as if she would need to lie. As long as this girl wouldn't attack, she was safe, but how could she be sure that the stranger wouldn't attack? Maybe she was too naive to think about that.

    The illusion disappeared and they were once again standing on solid ground in between two buildings. "Now keep your word." She said and waited for the other girl to open her hand to let the pendant drop down.
  14. Letting out a soft breath as the illusion disappeared a part of the tension Xan was holding eased. Ze let go of the trinket and let it fall into the girl's hand. As the trinket landed on the palm of it's owner Xan pulled away from the girl, creating a larger distance between the two.

    Looking at the girl cautiously ze waited for her next move. Would she attack? Would she leave? "There you go, your necklace is back." One thing was for sure, ze wasn't about to turn her back to the girl right away.
  15. As fast as the pendant touched her skin, Elise fast stepped back a few step to put some distance between them. It was safely back in her hands, now she could finally calm down and think. "Thanks." She said, but there was an obvious suspicion in her tone.

    "You never told me why you had it. Like you had all those wallets. Did you... Steal them?" She probably should have just left, but if it was true, there was something seriously wrong with this girl. No human should be pushed into such deeds. Something must have happened for her to get to such a point in her life. "It's not good you know. It hurts people when their belongings are taken from them." With the necklace back in her hand, Elise was finally calm enough to think somewhat clearly. The anger had completely left her. Now the question was, was this stranger a mutant, and if so did she work for Magneto? Should she just get out of there or could she get close without getting herself in danger?
  16. Was this girl serious? She's questioning a thief about stealing? "How about you just go along with your life? Are you some kind of goodie two-shoes?" Unable to withhold the disbelief Xan stared at the girl in front of hir.

    It was a good thing they were in an alleyway, they were out of sight and if it came to it Xan could use hir own powers. Still, ze was reluctant to using those powers and becoming reliant on them, especially in this world that had now become painfully aware of mutants.
  17. "No I'm not." Elise said defensively. She probably was though, but it sounded like such a bad thing coming from that girl. "But I don't like it when people take my stuff, and other people wouldn't like it if they got their stuff taken. You would probably not like it if someone took your stuff away from you." She tried to get through to the thief, tried to rationalize with her, try to make her understand why she shouldn't do what she's doing.

    "Why are you doing such things? Financial issues? Homelessness? I could introduce you to some people that can help you get a job." Sometimes people just needed some help to get back on their feet. While she didn't personally know anyone well in that town, she could certainly fast find a place that would take a new employee under their wings. She had never had problems doing that for herself, so doing it for someone else wouldn't be hard.
  18. Holding back a laugh Xan just smiled and took another step away, backing further away from this naive girl that thought the rationale would matter to hir. "It's stuff. They don't matter that much." Shaking hir head lightly the laughter finally came forth. It was just things, so what if they got lost or stolen? They could be replaced in most cases.

    Laughter dying quickly down ze rejected the offer this girl offered. "I don't need your help, and I don't need a job." Backing off further Xan was not going to stay any longer around this girl. How did she just forget she had used her powers to reclaim a silver trinket?
  19. "Doesn't matter?" Elise whispered, looking genuinely hurt by the comment. "This necklace was my mothers. It is the only thing I have left from her. There is nothing I can replace it with. One small, seemingly worthless item can have a great emotional value for someone. You never know how much you'll hurt someone by taking their possession." Why was she even trying to rationalize with this thief? She wouldn't learn no matter how hard she tried. Still she couldn't stop herself.

    "At the very least, don't take an item from someone, because you have no idea how much that will hurt them. The change from their wallets will usually not harm them economically, but taking something as small as a necklace can emotionally scar the wrong person." Stealing anything at all was wrong, but it wasn't like she could stop this lost soul from doing it. She couldn't really put her into an illusion forever, nor did she want to get involved with the police by telling them about the pick-pocketing girl she stumbled upon. At the very least she could try to convince her to keep to the money. No one kept all of their savings on their person.
  20. While this goodie-two-shoes was talking about how trinkets were valuable Xan was slowly moving further and further away. Giving a casual grin to this earnestly pleading girl ze just answered flippantly: "That's your ethic, not mine." Having reached the end of the alleyway Xan turned and quickly bolted, not any further interested in entertaining the girl.

    With quick steps ze weaved through the crowd, blending in with practiced ease. Letting hirself get lost among the bustle of people, the more important part was to not let the girl catch up with hir again.
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