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Fire and Water
Ayden had been working as many hours as she could, they were all over the place. This was the first day off she'd had since she started at Chesterfield's. Ayden knew Connor would be working most of the day, and she'd worked a early shift and was getting home just before Connor would be for the day, but sleep was needed.

Ayden laid down in her own bed, it was hard drifting to sleep with out Connor at her side. He'd become a fixture in her life pretty quickly, the stability of it made her happy.

Dreams had been few and far between since they'd gotten back together, and this was the first real sleep she'd tried to get since them, without him. And the dreams came.

But they were not the same she had been plagued with after the kill. They were still gory and blood soaked as always. But this time it wasn't the sacrifice that plagued her, it was those she loved were dying, and there was nothing she could do about it. It was clear in the from the way it played out that death and mayhem was caused from her, from something she wasn't doing. But for the life of the dream Ayden she couldn't figure out what she wasn't doing. She tried everything to save her family, to save friends. And when it came to seeing Connor dripping blood from some unknown source Ayden sat blot upright in bed.

Ayden's heart was racing. She was shaking despite being overly warm. She'd only gotten a few hours of sleep, it was nearing 5pm and the sun was near setting in the winter sky. But Ayden couldn't sleep anymore. Connor would be home soon. But the vision of him dripping in blood made Ayden get up and go for a walk. She left a note under his door, so he'd not worry. But she had to leave her apartment.

Ayden just walked and walked until she found her path blocked by the nearly frozen river. It was cold, Ayden pulled her gift around her and warmed a pocket of air around her and then turned to walk the path the river took. Maybe it would ease her fears, but so far nothing seemed to get the images from her mind.
Even though it was no longer safe to run in the winter months, Zoya couldn't stay indoors any longer. It had been four days since she'd last talked to Ivan after her experience at the factory. All of which, up until that morning, had been spent nursing a familiar headache and chills that transcended a simple hangover. By the end, the woman had felt trapped. She needed the sight and sounds of the river, and the feel of the cold air on her face.

As a compromise, she spent her time walking. She was dressed in warm running gear, complete with hat and gloves, and had covered quite a few kilometers and showed no signs of stopping. For some reason she couldn't explain, Zoya was restless, and the more time she spent outdoors, the better she felt.

There was a good spot for her to pause and just take in the scenery before all the light was cometly gone, and wanting to make good use of it, Zoya slowed her pace down. From somewhere, she could hear the voices of children shouting playfully at eachother despite the late hour. More likely than not, they too wished to make good use of every second of precocious light the days offered.

Not too far from her, a woman stood by the river's edge. Like her, Zoya stood to look across at the partially frozen waters. Beneath those patches of ice, however, the current was as strong and indomitable as ever. All in all, the river was beautiful to her; perhaps it became cold and distant to some, but to her it was always beautiful.

She considered calling out a greeting, but the woman turned to walk away. Not wanting to bother her, Zoya turned her attentionattention back to the still waters. Thursday, she would be seeing Supercop once more, and she was glad for this small chance to recharge before then.

Edited by Zoya Bocharov, Jul 12 2014, 01:36 AM.
Curiosity struck as Ayden saw three figures nearing the water's edge. Ayden stopped to watch the children as the headed towards the frigid waters. They ran with the glee of children, but it was eerie. The sun was very low in the sky, the air was crisp, and yet these children ran towards the water like it was the middle of the summer.

It took Ayden a few moments to see that another small figure sat in the middle of the river, splashing and laughing with joy. Ayden could see the figure clearly with the power of her gift, she had to blink several times. The child in the water was green in hue and rather monkey like, maybe frog like and she could have sworn she could see through it like the glass on a bathroom shower.

Ayden wanted to yell for the children to stop, but she seemed dumbfounded with the strangeness of it all. She had to be seeing things. A second look at the middle of the river and there was nothing, but the children continued to the edge of the river none-the-less. Ayden found her voice, and yelled to the kids nearing the edge. "Be careful the water is cold and the ice looks to be thin."
But before the last words were out of her mouth a child fell into the water and started paddling towards the one in the middle.

Ayden could see the paddling child turning blue as the water froze his, her little body.

Ayden started running towards the edge of the water, but she knew she'd not make it in time. She stopped and looked around, only one woman was near by. Ayden sighed, there was nothing else left to do. She wove a weave of air and pulled the child from the river and continued running towards the others.

They were careless of their friend being pulled back from the ice waters. Ayden dropped the child and used the same weave of air to restrain the children from the water. It would have to do for now. She was confused as to why they would plunge so carelessly into the water.

But the other two children were not what she cared about now. Ayden ran to the soaking wet child. There was a dilemma, let the children plunge into the ice water as their hearts so dearly wanted, or let this child freeze to death when she could help...

Edited by Ayden, Jul 14 2014, 04:08 PM.
She turned her head in the direction of the shouts and her heart stopped. Watching the child fall into the icy river made her stomach twist in fear. For a second, it wasn’t a child running over ice, but the memory of a boy climbing a tree and falling into the fierce waters. Her feet moved on their own as she turned and ran towards the woman and remaining children. Her vision became sharper, her world grew clearer; the air was crisper. The world from seconds before seemed dull in comparison.

She didn’t know what she could have done, but Zoya felt a need to get to the children. What happened as she approached, however, froze her in her tracks as surely as if the ice had formed around her legs. The child, blue and sure to end up suffering from hypothermia, floated out of the river.

Her gasp was audible, but her disbelief had to be pushed aside. For a moment, the brunette looked frantically around, expecting some monster to jump out of nowhere. But, if one of those creatures from the factory was there, what would it have to do with the wet the boy? The question was one Zoya couldn’t answer. She didn’t even know if there was a link at all. All she knew, she decided as she watched the kid drop down on to the shore, was that unless he was warmed and seen to, his outcome wasn’t good.

His friends seemed to stop as if held by invisible ties, and by the time she reached the boy on the ground, did not appear to get into the water itself. “Get them back from there!”
She called to the woman while dropping to her knees and checking on the boy. “Hey,”
she spoke to the kid while getting the wet hat off of his head. “What is your name? Are you ok?”

The child shivered, teeth audibly chattering as he shook. “c..c..cold.”

“We have to get you out of these wet clothes. I’m Zoya. I’ll give you my jacket for now, but we have to get you dry and warm. Where do you live?”
He was somewhat responsive, and she wanted to keep him talking. Most importantly, she wanted to get him dry. Dry and warm.

She hurried to help the kid out of his wet jacket, then, to her shock it seemed as if the water soaking his face stopped dripping. In fact, she watched, small jacket held tightly in her hands, as the liquid beaded together into small balls that pulled out and away from the boy and his clothes. For the second time that night, she gasped, and as if poured from a bucket, the water that had at one point soaked the boy from head to toe poured onto the ground around him.

Her hands trembled, the world around them no longer seemed as vibrant. But strangely, the boy was dry. Zoya couldn't imagine how in the world that had happened, but he was dry. Unfortunately, he remained a pale shade of blue, and exposed to the cold air.

Dropping the wet jacket by her feet, the woman took of her own jacket and wrapped it around his small frame. At least, judging by his wide eyed look, she wasn't the only one bewildered by what was going on. "Kid, I wish I knew what the hell was going on too."

Edited by Zoya Bocharov, Jul 15 2014, 01:39 AM.
Ayden blinked in surprise as a glow surrounded the other woman. She'd never seen that happen before, but then again she'd never seen anyone else with the power she possessed.

Ayden carefully lifted the two other children and sat them on the ground near their friend and the other woman. Ayden thought she heard her say her name was Zoya to the boy. She went to the group and looked sternly at the children. "Stay here please."

Ayden dropped the weave of air holding the children and wove a bright ball of fire and air. And placed the globe near them. "Don't touch it, it's still very hot. But it'll warm us until we can get the lot of you home.

Ayden knelt down by the little boy. She looked over at the other woman and smiled. "Weird things been happening around you lately? Things you can't explain? It happened to me too."
Ayden turned to the boy and his friends. "Why are you going swimming today? The water is cold and there is snow everywhere. This isn't some young polar bears club is it?
Ayden wondered why on earth anyone would want to jump into icy waters at any age.
Zoya didn't see the other two boys floating towards them until their feet landed on the ground, and even then it was only from the corner of her eye. Then, more surprisingly, a ball of fire materialized above them. Her first reaction was fear, and she clutched the boy she'd been talking to and pulled him back towards her. She had no idea what in the world was going on but her instinctive reaction was to keep the kids safe.

Then, baffling her even more, the woman that was with them seemed calm. The woman told the boys to be careful as if she were telling them all not to touch a cake that was still too hot to eat. She spoke in turns to Zoya and the kids, and her question rattled the brunette.

Before she could speak, the boy she held answered the question directed at him. His head shook, and she could feel his small shoulders shrug. "I...I don't know. I don't really know what happened."
His eyes remained fixed on the fiery globe floating in the air. His friends, equally mesmerized, stared at each of them in turn.

"Who are you?"
Finally finding her voice, Zoya let the words flow, "and yes, a few. Are you...are you doing this? Was it you all along?"

Edited by Zoya Bocharov, Jul 15 2014, 05:59 PM.
Ayden nodded to the little boy, weird things happened. This was proof of that, there was no need to dwell on the reason, they were safe now and that is all that really mattered.

"Who are you? and yes, a few. Are you...are you doing this? Was it you all along?"

Ayden smiled and spoke to everyone, not just the woman who'd asked, "My name is Ayden. I am doing this, but it's not something I'd like to share with the world, but desperate times, call for desperate measures."
Ayden shook her head. "No I I didn't do this all. I pulled the boy from the water. I kept the others from plunging into the water. And I made this globe of fire to keep us warm. "
Ayden pointed at Zoya. "You, my friend, dried his clothes so he's not sitting here in the snow completely soaked. And a rather ingenious weave it was."

Ayden knew what it was like to find out you could do something so out of the ordinary. But she didn't have anyone tell her it was okay, and that there was nothing wrong with her. "Once you learn to control your gift, your side effects will diminish."
There was no need to come straight out and say that the sickness would vanish from her, there was no need to send the boys screaming to their mothers about the sickness. "But if you do not you could end up like so many others of us."

Ayden looked at the warmer children and let the fire wink out, but she didn't let her gift go with it. She wanted to get them away from the river and to safety before she'd let go. "I think we should see these children home. We can talk more on the way if you'd like."
She was dumbfounded. As a matter of fact, she was probably going crazy. That, or Zoya had actually fallen sleep at home and was dreaming. The woman tried to tell herself that only her imagination could come up with something so ridiculous. But, everything was too solid and clear to be a dream. This was no vivid concoction of her mind. Bewildering as it was, what she was seeing and hearing was real.

She had dried the boy? There were more people that could do these things? For a moment, Zoya felt a little faint. In less than ten minutes what she knew about the world was being conveniently turned upside down… again. She still shuddered at any thoughts of that creature in the factory. It had been unsettling to find out that things like the Boogieman were real. Now magic and people with built in special effects were real too? Not only that, but she was one of them.

The children began to look less shaken by what had happened and more enthralled but what Ayden was saying, as well as the glowing fireball ball that had been near them until it disappeared. That helped Zoya relax a little and get a hold of herself. There was no need to panic, and the other woman was right. The children needed to be taken back.

After nodding at Ayden, Zo looked down at the child with her and asked where he lived. Thankfully, Zoya knew the area well enough to know they wouldn’t have to go far. “That’s just at the other side of the park, we can drop all of them off at one place and let the parents handle the rest. “
Picking up the boy's wet jacket, she looked at Ayden once more. “I don’t know how I did what you said, but can you dry his jacket too? I'm sorry, but I just don’t understand how any of this is possible.”

Edited by Zoya Bocharov, Jul 18 2014, 03:18 PM.
Ayden could almost see the wheels turning in disbelief in Zoya's head. When she found out she'd been alone, she and her friend were the only two there, and Ayden had watched his skin knit together by unseen hands. Realization was a bitch sometimes. But everything fell together that day, everything was explained. She still got sick later, but after that she never did again. It was necessary to understand. She hoped Zoya would come to terms and she could go with out the sickness for too long. Ayden wondered if this was her first experience, or was she close to those who had died. That was a dreadful thought and Ayden pushed it away.

The gift made everything crisp and clear and she remembered what Zoya had done, but she was not very good with water, but she wove a crude mesh like Zoya's and the coat dried up, like something siphoned the water out. It was still a little damp but after a second attempt it was completely dry. Ayden smiled wrly at her, "My talents don't lie with water."

Ayden stood up and turned to the boy "Lead the way."

Ayden followed the children to the location he'd indicated, she stayed near Zoya so they could talk in quieter voices, so as not to alarm the children, or make them anymore curious than they already were. "It is possible, I assure you how ever unlikely it sounds, it is true. Life is strange like that. I can tell you how I managed to control the gift, if you like. But I'll be honest, it wasn't easy for me, I struggled for almost a year before I could control it at will."
She watched as the boy’s coat was dried, then exchanged jackets with the boy in order to get her own back. She watched the boys walk on ahead of them, and followed them while remaining close to Ayden. The woman kept calling their abilities a gift, but Zoya was not quite sure what to call it. Despite her belief in a higher power, the brunette was not deeply religious, and was more likely to attribute all that she was seeing to something science could explain.

“I’d like that, thank you. I mean, regardless of how long it took you to control this… this thing… you found a way. Up until now I had no idea what was going on.”
She slipped her hands in her pockets, and looked ahead at the boys. “You mentioned something about side effects, earlier. What side effects? Are they severe?”
She had a sinking feeling that she had an idea of the answer may be, and though her stomach turned into knots, she waited to hear Ayden speak.

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