This forum uses cookies
This forum makes use of cookies to store your login information if you are registered, and your last visit if you are not. Cookies are small text documents stored on your computer; the cookies set by this forum can only be used on this website and pose no security risk. Cookies on this forum also track the specific topics you have read and when you last read them. Please confirm whether you accept or reject these cookies being set.

A cookie will be stored in your browser regardless of choice to prevent you being asked this question again. You will be able to change your cookie settings at any time using the link in the footer.

A Pull of Threads
Sweat dripped down Jared's face, a few drops falling and hitting the floor. Sierra Leone was a hot and humid climate, but on top of that, Jared had spent time training in his magic. He had a feeling he would need to use it soon.

Jared was tired despite the forced rest. After attempting to sleep, which was difficult as every time he let his mind get quiet he heard the screams of the refugees in Masiaka - screams he likely heard more clearly than his comrades with magic enhanced hearing, Jared went on patrol which was immediately followed by practicing magic.

Jared took a seat in the basement and used a towel to wipe off his face, and as his mind cleared he heard the screams again. He shook his head, willing them away. He could have summoned mana, but he was too tired and just wanted to feel human again for awhile. After a few minutes, he stood and headed to the showers.

He didn't spend much time there, as he hadn't spent much time anywhere in the last couple of days. Anything to distract. He checked a clock as he walked back to his room. It was late and the sun had already set. He knew he should probably sleep, but also knew it would be a long time in coming. He grabbed his wallet and headed to the Mess area.

He didn't get a cup of coffee or even a water. Jared instead just sat down in an uninhabited corner of the room, yawning as he did, and began to see what was happening in the world elsewhere. Jared hadn't been in Sierra Leone long, but felt he needed to escape for a bit. Maybe the short escape would make his rest later come a little more easier.

Jared skipped anything on Sierra Leone, knowing first hand what was happening there. Instead he found other things to keep his time. Some police officer was attacked in Moscow by an "unknown energy weapon." It seemed as if the press was still trying to hide the existence of magic.

He paused on another article, unsure of why he did so. The headline read "Shale Industries to Expand." Jared read the article, familiar with the company that had invented the technology that he was using to read it. Shale Industries was setting up shop in Moscow - it seemed everything revolved around the CCD's capital now.

It wasn't a terribly interesting article, but Jared remained glued to it for awhile. He eyes hovered towards the picture of the young woman - Emily Shale, CEO. He recalled that she had donated something to Sierra Leone in memory of her late parents.

"Probably some rich snob,"
he thought, but still felt guilty for it. There were rich people who cared.

With a sigh he put the wallet down on the table and leaned his head against the wall to stare at the ceiling. Jared wondered if he looked as bad as he felt.
The embassy HQ that formerly doubled as the Legion's base of operations in Freetown, was not completely taken over by them. At first glance, Jay was tempted to think the Legion was the national army of Morocco, but that was far from the truth. They were their own institution, and as their CEO made clear with the refugees, they were the personal army of Jacques Danjou. Jay's faith in their leader was shaken as his gait, but he stiffened his spine and hobbled on into the embassy late at night. His assignment served some purpose in reminding him why he was here. He was to act as a sort of liaison between the Red Cross and the Legion. At least it let him keep an eye on Natalie, who left him with the impression that she liked to risk her neck at the worst of times.

Although the sun was well below the horizon, as he entered the embassy building, heavy, humid air settled immediately into his skin and every inch of him peppered sweat beads. Most of the legionnaires had temporary quarters outside, but given his injury and some strange interest in him by his superior's, an order he couldn't fathom given his peon rank, he was ordered to return to HQ, report and stay. Fine by Jay. But at least outside there was the chance for a breeze.

He hiked upstairs, hard to do when his left knee was imprisoned in its webby cast beneath the pant leg. The only indication of its presence, other than the limp, was the lower hem floating free around his boot when it should be tucked to regulation. In fact, the entire boot was awkwardly laced given that it wrapped around a cast that stretched to his ankle.

Once report was over, he was dismissed to find food and a place to sleep. As food was all the way back down stairs, and he was achingly tired, he opted to go straight for the floor. He poked his head in a room after the first couple tries found others occupied to the max, and paused when he found Vanders tucked away in a place by himself.

"Nobody willing to share with your wizard ass Vanders?"
He smirked and let himself in.

Only darkness shows you the light.

Jared's eyes remained fixed on a spot on the ceiling until a voice drew them away. A smirk came to Jared's face as he recognized the voice before actually seeing the form of Jay Carpenter in the doorway. You could always count on Jay to add some light to the darkness.

"No, I'm just too awesome to be hanging out with the mere mortals."
Jared said with a grin. "Seriously though, for awhile I think I needed solitude, but now I could use the company."
Jared said in invitation.

Jared sat up so he was no longer leaning against the wall, feeling too tired to do much more. A quick look at Jay and he realized that the other Legionnaire was exhausted too. Jared yawned again. "I hope sleep comes easier for you than it has for me. I'm exhausted from patrols and wizarding."
Jared craved a cigarette, but they were across the room and his lack of energy won over his craving.

Instead he sat, his eyes on the floor. "Anytime I get close to sleep I hear the screams again."
Jared knew he didn't have to clarify, there was only one set of screams he could be referring to. He wasn't even sure why he told the other man. The words just seemed to escape on their own.
Good to hear Vanders still had a sense of humor after all his magic got turned-on. Jay limped on in the room and spied out a place to toss his stuff for the night. As it was almost entirely hooked to him somehow, he began the methodic process of decluttering his body and emptying pockets. "The wizarding stuff wear you out? Like a workout?"
Seemed to be the case, Jay thought as he gave Vanders a quick look over. Their regular day to day work was tiring in a good kind of way, but wizard workouts seemed to amplify the load. Without the added benefit of looking better naked, either.

He labored to the floor, and unlike Vanders, was perfectly content to lean against the wall. Pillows were luxuries around there saved for the injured... or well, seriously injured... so Jay popped off his outer shirt, rolled it up and stuffed it behind his head. The fresh air momentarily felt good on his forearms, and he longed to strip out of the remaining t-shirt, but he doubted Vanders would appreciate the smell. He seemed fresh as a daisy out of the shower. The shoes stayed on for now. He'd change socks in the morning.

His mind was blessedly blank when Vanders stirred the air with his admission. Jay frowned and slowly nodded. "You were a cop before the Legion, right?"
Cops probably didn't drive around listening to people scream in the distance, powerless to do anything. They were the boys in blue, knights in shining armor come to save the day. While these third world, jungle theaters could rip a man's soul to pieces until he learned to buffer out the horror and accept his commander's orders to sit tight and listen to hell be unleashed.

On some level, Jay wished for the good old days of army-on-army land wars. Where a king rode out in front of a line of soldiers to lay waste to another line of soldiers until the winner was the group least hacked to death. A man knew his enemy then.... the other banner. Africa, South America, whatever it was, war today felt like the good guys were battling barbarism itself. They hacked at women and children, the weak targets, as decoys or excuses, and were too cowardly to face a real line of soldiers. Gorilla warfare. Terrorism. Why couldn't there just be one evil in the world, with twisted minions and hordes of faithful practitioners to fight? How much simpler would it be then.

But that was fantasy.

"You'll get used to it. Or eventually you'll snap and go ape-shit crazy at the worst possible moment and get yourself discharged."
Jay opened his eyes, rolling his head toward Vanders. He couldn't say that's what happened to him, but maybe on some level, he wanted Jared to know he wasn't the only one.

Only darkness shows you the light.

Jared moved and leaned back against the wall, stifling another yawn. "Yeah, it's a bit like a workout. It's tiring after awhile. However, like most things, the more I use it, the better I get. I can feel it getting stronger."

Jay listened to his situation and took it in hand. The other Legionnaire seemed to understand. After all, Jay had been there too. Jay was right though, he had been a cop before. The question brought back memories of when Jay had first seen him use magic.

Jared's response started with a sigh. "Roswell SWAT. Compared to this, dealing with bomb threats on alien conventions seemed simple. At least there was a clear course of action there. Here it's just..."
The sentence tapered off. There wasn't a reason to go further.

Jay's final words hit his ears, and he was glad for them. Jared would rather have not been in a situation where he would have to get used to the screams, but learning to live with it was the best he could do - for himself and for others. As much as he wished he could have done something, there had been nothing he could have done. "Thanks, Jay. For the words and the company."

Edited by Jared Vanders, Jun 15 2015, 01:09 PM.
Roswell. That's right. It was coming back now. Roswell and aliens. The jokes were never ending. Maybe when he was a little less exhausted he'd give Vanders a hard time about it, but for now he laid his head against the wall and contemplated going to actual sleep. "Yeah yeah. Just don't get the wrong idea and think I'm all about the warm and fuzzies."

A knock on the door and Jay hollared out a "Yeah?"
Dante, an italian turned Legionnaire, sauntered in cradling a kitten in one arm.

"Hollywood. Found your cat." He came over and dumped Shredder on Jay's lap. After peeling its claws off his uniform, of course. "Damn thing wouldn't shut up."

Jay grinned as Shredder padded around his lap, sniffing and circling. "Seems quiet now,"
he shrugged and looked up. Dante shook his head, nodded at Vanders and left.

He chuckled. Dante wasn't the warm and fuzzy type. "Wondering what happened to you,"
he picked the kitten up, turned him over and scratched his belly. Which promptly earned finger-gnawing.
Only darkness shows you the light.

"Damn - and I was hoping for some cuddling tonight."
Jared said in response to Jay's comment on 'warm and fuzzies,' adding some humor to his tone. He knew the humor was a defense mechanism as much as anything else, but it helped.

A knock on the door and Dante showed up with the infamous Shredder. The cat had been with Jay since the coup, and Jared had to admit he was a cute little guy. Jared returned Dante's nod as he left. His mind was quieting now. The screams were still present, but losing their volume.

Perhaps soon, he could sleep. Jared scooped up his wallet and woke it up, seeing the photo of Emily Shale once more. He closed his browser and pocketed it before turning back to Jay. "A lot of people comment that dogs are more loyal, but I've really noticed that they are just as loyal, but a little more selective on who they are loyal too. You've found yourself a pretty amazing companion there."
Jared said with a smile.

Edited by Jared Vanders, Jun 21 2015, 07:37 PM.
Jay wrapped Shredder's belly in the palm of his hand, ignoring the kitten teeth gnawing on his fingers and looked up. "No cuddling tonight buddy."
He looked Vanders over and laughed without a hint of awkwardness. Shredder on the other hand grew bored with gnawing on his fingers, twisted his little head around and crawled off Jay's lap to sniff around the floor.

"We always had cats growing up. They were half wild though and mostly good for keeping rodents out of the barn and spazzing out the chickens. Always had a dog or three loping around too."
Shredder eyed an ant crawling on the floor that Jay didn't notice until the kitten began to stalk it. He just chuckled and let the kitten do its thing. At least it'd protect them the bugs. Or well, small bugs. In Columbia, and presumably Sierra Leone too, there were bugs twice the size as his kitten. "You had anyone back home?"

Only darkness shows you the light.

Jared allowed a chuckle to arise from his throat as the cat started chasing after an ant. Shredder's eyes would follow the bug as lay in wait to pounce on his prey. For some reason, Jared always found it cute when cats hunted like that.

"No. I had no pets growing up."
Jared said responding to Jay's question. He had said anyone though, and that made him think he might mean people too. "My parents are still in Roswell, and I have a few friends from the Force. There are some collegiate friends nearby too. No significant other or children either. I had a few girlfriends, but nothing serious there."

It was part of the reason that joining had been an easier decision. He had very few ties to his former life. Jared hadn't exactly been a lonely man. There were just few people to keep his attention. "What about you?"
"Yeah I get that,"
Jay responded. Jared had a few years on Jay, that was obvious. Practically a grandpa in comparison. Thirty-one? Thirty-two? Hard to say. But point was, in all that time at home, he should have found someone right? Wasn't that the normal routine of things? Graduate high school. Go to college. Wonder where he went.. Hang out. Eventually settle down. Sounded like Jay's worst nightmare, but that was how things were suppose to go. Right?

"There wasn't a lot of time for that kind of thing. In high school, sure, but that doesn't count, right?"
His smirk suggested a lot. High school was fun. Could have done without the drama, but thats probably why Jay's girlfriends were more often from neighboring counties than what his school's small fishbowl offered.

Good times, but they were in the past. Better times were to come. "And I enlisted right after that. Marine corps."
He shrugged. That kind of thing hadn't a single bearing on his reasons for enlisting. It felt like every day was a mistake. Not that he didn't mind plowing and checking cattle. But something about it was wrong in his bones, like he was suppose to be doing something else. Something bigger. He still didn't quite feel settled in life, but at least the pace kept him distracted from thinking about it. Until Vanders got all sentimental and mushy.

His thoughts wandered from there until he pictured Natalie's face.

Only darkness shows you the light.


Forum Jump:

Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)