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The Great Plan
Topic: The Great Plan (Read 3712 times)
No, really, where am I?
Re: The Great Plan
Reply #15 on:
September 03, 2009, 09:53:35 AM »
The diner itself was one of those old, prefabricated deals that where so popular back in thirties and forties. Free standing and often found along lonely stretches of highway, this one had seen better days. The ceiling as concaved with a row of light fixtures running down it, and there was a lot of chrome, indicative of the period.
The waitress behind the bar was also indicative of the period. Dan could imagine her serving soldiers just returning back home from the Big One; young men who had left their mother country with bright eyes and big hearts, too often coming back haunted by what they had seen in Europe. Myrtle, that was what her name tag identified her as, looked at him as she brushed a light blue hair away from her thick glasses.
â€œWhatchaâ€™ want, honey?â€ she asked, the ashes of the Virginia Slim bouncing up and down as she talked.
Dan made a quick glance over the menu in front of him. Standard greasy spoon food, stuff he did not need to weigh himself down with if he was going to keep moving. But he knew he needed some carbohydrates to burn. Four days with no sleep and living on coffee and cigarettes was starting to get to him. He felt the slack in his belt. â€œCan I get a cup of coffee and a plate of spaghetti, please?â€
â€œSure thing, hon. Hey Joseâ€™! Gimme a cupâ€™a joe with foreign entanglements.â€ She looked at Dan, somewhat sympathetically, before yelling back over her shoulder. â€œAnd throw in a Magoo in the alley.â€ She smiled at Dan, â€œYou like custard pie, donâ€™tcha suga?â€ Her smile probably used to make men promise her the world.
â€œYes, maâ€™am. Thank you.â€
She slid the cup of coffee over to him and went back to cleaning a red spot on the bar. The spot (was it strawberry?) seemed to be giving her a problem. She reached under the bar and retrieved a large white bottle marked Ammonia. As she opened it, the fumes hit him and the memories washed over him like a tidal waveâ€¦razorslightselectrodes bloodpainneedlespuncturingskinnailsrippedfromtheirrootslaughterâ€¦
The clank of the ceramic plate full of spaghetti brought him out of the past. He jerked his head up, and found Myrtle was looking at him. â€œYou better drink that coffee up darlingâ€™, you â€˜bout fell asleep there.â€ She reached out and patted his hand with her own, it looked like parchment.
Looking down at his spaghetti and custard pie, Dan realized that he no longer had an appetite. He was getting ready to make a run for the bath room, his stomach rolling, when he heard the sound of the four gold bells echo through the diner.
... ... ...
Last Edit: September 03, 2009, 09:55:54 AM by Stacy B.
Re: The Great Plan
Reply #16 on:
October 09, 2009, 10:27:53 AM »
It's been over a month with no contributions. So, I'll go next.
I would be very interested to see where different people might take this. So, building a bit on what Stacy last contributed:
There wasnâ€™t time to run. The only exit was through the thin swinging door into the kitchen. Dan could see the cook, must be Jose', through the small round window of the door.
Dan knew there would be knives in the kitchen. It seemed like knives were all he could remember sometimes.
He realized he had reflexively picked up his own butter knife, unconsciously switching it into a reverse-grip. The blade was hidden under his forearm, not only hiding the length and position of the blade but even the fact that he had a concealed weapon.
Information, sub-consciously gathered upon entering the diner, came flooding into his brain. He knew it was exactly twelve and a half feet from where he sat to the front door. The closest object with enough mass to do damage was the tarnished silver pie tin, holding a lopsided yellow cake, fourteen inches to his left.
But Dan was tired of running. He was exhausted, not from the lack of sleep or borderline malnutrition, but from the weight of his own life.
Escape wasnâ€™t an option. It wasnâ€™t the escape from the diner that brought this thoughtâ€¦Dan knew he couldnâ€™t escape from what he had seen and done.
There are many things one tries to escape over the course of their life. But the worst burden of all, the one that lingers and consumes, is regret.
Dan breathed one short, silent breath. He never turned to face the door. He didnâ€™t even flinch when a hand came to rest gently on his own wrist.
A gentle and familiar scent, vanilla mixed with kiwis, met his nostrils. The soft hand rested gently on his, yet he knew its placement was perfect to disarm him of the concealed knife.
She stood at the perfect angle to both avoid a foolhardy attempt to use the knife and, he noticed, at the one position to his right where he couldnâ€™t employ the use of the pie tin. Just out of sight of his peripheral vision, he felt her breath on his ear.
â€œHello, Dan.â€, was all she said. The dulcet tone of her voice invoked a desire to lose himself into her. â€¦ or maybe it was his own memory of that time that disarmed him now.
Dan slowly released his grip on the butter knife, placing it silently on the counter. His free hand came to rest on top of hers, with the quiet need of a dying man holding onto each of his last minutes of life.
â€œItâ€™s time to stop running.â€
Dan recognized his own voice, expressing the truth they both knew.
... ... ...
Last Edit: December 30, 2009, 07:33:14 PM by Navarre
No, really, where am I?
Re: The Great Plan
Reply #17 on:
November 12, 2009, 07:30:27 AM »
He turned and saw Regina for the first time since the escape. She had changed, and it startled him to what extent. Her once long black hair was cut short, the length was not even enough to run your fingers through. Her chocolate skin was still as smooth as ever, except a fine, finger length scar that ran across her jaw line, accenting the square set of her face. There was a time he didnâ€™t think that anything could hurt her, much less leave such a mark. Even her clothes had changed. The light, wispy robe she used to wear had been replaced by a more restrictive, black, collarless, business suit style uniform. Her logo, a rose in a starburst, had been placed over her left breast pocket. At one time it had floated on her robes like a banner, now it was more of a warning. Things must have been worse than the news had let on.
â€œDan, you ran.â€
It was not a question and her voice didnâ€™t crack. This was not the voice of the soft spoken psychiatrist who used to try and explain why his gifts didnâ€™t manifest themselves until after his father died, or why they left him temporarily after his son died, and why he couldnâ€™t call on them now. This was the voice of a woman who had seen far too much in far to short a time.
â€œDan.â€ She still was not looking at him, but she had not yet removed his hand from hers. â€œYou only have minutes to explain. Iâ€™ve contacted a retrieval team, and they will be here shortly.â€ His hand involuntarily tightened at the mention of the retrieval team. She wasnâ€™t taking any more chances.
â€œIt was wrong.â€
He didnâ€™t exactly speak the words as much as they seemed to escape through the cracks. He was holding back an unsuspected wave of emotion, and was afraid that it would overwhelm him.
â€œThey had us up there, telling us that it was our duty! Our duty to stop them!â€ Dan slammed his free hand against the counter, causing his plate of spaghetti to jump several inches in the air and his coffee to spill. On the other end of the counter, Myrtleâ€™s cigarette fell out of her mouth as the mini-shockwave rolled over her, ruffling the daisy that was pinned opposite her name tag. She looked as if she must have just seen the devil, and she let out a little squeak as she ran through the swinging door to the kitchen.
â€œDan,â€ she was using her professional voice now, â€œit was our duty to stop them. But what you didâ€¦â€ She slipped her hand from under his. â€œThe civilians where never a part of it; they where innocent. You hadâ€¦â€, her voice cracked for a moment, â€œâ€¦ no cause toâ€¦â€
He turned his head to look at her, and Regina turned to meet his gaze. She was putting on her professional face, the one that he had peeled away that night on the border. Before they found out about his private littleâ€¦
â€œNO!â€ He screamed swinging at her with the hand that had held herâ€™s moments ago. The momentum of the blow carried her off the stool, but it was his hand that suffered the damage.
Re: The Great Plan
Reply #18 on:
December 30, 2009, 08:40:40 PM »
A New Year's addition to the story. I dare someone besides Stacy to add something worthy to this endeavor. I double-dog-dare ya!
Dan's hand reflexively spasmed and his fingers curled as a wave of pain shot up his forearm. He had expected his quick strike to stun Regina but it was he who was surprised instead.
He had felt the unexpectedly solid surface of her skin before he realised she had absorbed the density of the chrome on the sides of the counter. He had seen her caressing it casually with her free hand but her mocha skin showed no signs of her absorbtion.
Her control over her powers had obviously increased during their time apart. He would have been proud of her but he was fairly certain his hand was fractured.
Dan vaulted the counter in one motion. Adrenaline gave him the strength he lacked from food and sleep.
He cleared the counter without even touching it, an Olympic-level jump that placed him directly at the swinging kitchen door. Beyond, he could see Myrtle and Jose' staring, mouths agape, at what was surely the first bit of excitement this diner had seen in twenty years.
But it wasn't them that held Dan's attention. It was the four people who'd just walked through the front door.
He'd expected the retrieval team to be wearing dark suits, like Regina, or maybe even the cliche black trench coats. What he didn't expect was this trio of mismatched young men and the barely legal brunette with them.
The stockier clean-cut guy in the tan leather jacket was focused on pulling the outside door free from where it had stuck in the linoleum floor. He barely even glanced up.
The shaggy-haired taller male looked at Dan disdainfully over the top of his Oakley's and smirked. "So that's the 'Butcher', Dan Sutton?" He could almost hear the derisive laugh.
Fine, Dan thought. Send some runny-nosed kids to bring me in if you want. They break just the same.
Dan extended his hand, his good one, toward the four youths as Regina got to her feet. Her eyes grew wide as she realized Dan was still willing to do whatever it took when push came to shove.
Dan felt the shrill whine in his brain as his power ramped up. Part of him wanted to control it. He'd seen enough blood. But he didn't know what this team could do and he would
be taken back again.
The whine had become a scream in his mind as he connected to the frightening power that lay within. Dan felt the surge overtake his nervous system as it cascaded down his arm and toward his fingertips.
... and then, nothing.
"Oh, Dan." said Regina, with as much sympathy as pride. "You didn't think it would be
easy, did you? I chose my team wisely."
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