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Aberrant: 2011 - A Game of Heroes, Hearts, and Hellfire


White Light

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Twenty three days.

Lina walked out onto the street from an underground subway station. Her hair was in a bun up behind her head, and her make-up was light. She looked incredible. She wore a long, tight, and red dress with a cut up the left leg. She turned heads, but Lina was mostly blind to her surroundings. She loved the feeling of this city. It was so big she felt like she was nothing inside of it, and the ratio of people looking at her to the number of people not even knowing she was there was incredibly small. That was how she liked to feel on these days.

The sky was a dark gray, combinations of a new morning and a cloudy night. It being a Saturday meant that the streets weren’t at killer rush hour traffic, but it was still pretty bad. Anyone who wasn’t Lina could slip in and out of crowds with very relative ease. Thunder was heard for off, but Lina knew the storm was passing. It was near faint enough for her not to freak out, but she obviously flinched.

Just a few more minutes and I will finally be home. I miss Zach so much. I need to bring him with me next time I leave. She smiled at the prospect, but it was merely an impossible dream. And I miss Ravenshires touch. I wonder if I can stay the entire weekend.

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There were times when Dark Spiral felt that her friends helped her only when they felt like it. There were other times, like today, were their information was golden. They had chimed into the use of the Metro-Pass and predetermined that this would be the next stop. All DS had to do was get dressed and prepare to meet that harlot dressed in red like some used-up porn queen. She had parted reality and gotten ahead of this Lina-whore and put herself in a position to intercept this over-anxious slut. DS even managed to get to the Ferry before Lina and position herself in one of the more advantageous spots.

Of course, were as Lina would have used her charms to get what she wanted from the crowd, DS played up upon her alienisms. The ‘wrongness’ about her kept people away with a sense of unease, as would Lina’s except Lina had invested a part of her quantum destiny in overcoming that. Dark Spiral hadn’t bothered.

Anyway, it took little effort for DS to sidle up to Lina and strike up a conversation. DS was attractive in a deep, dark, exotic-yet-baseline way and would have easily been the most beautiful person on the ferry if Lina hadn’t been here. Lina was, of course, much more beautiful than that, but was normally shielded by her don’t-bother-with-me aura.

“Hey. You look familiar,” DS began. “Were do I know you from?”

The words were simple enough, but keeping the hate out of them wasn’t. DS now knew that leaving this to Ravenshire’s devices a no-go. The poor man couldn’t be expected to resist a witch like this for long. She appeared so innocent and holy, yet DS could sense the desperate, needy, lying wench underneath. Lina would say anything, do anything to keep Ravenshire and it would take a true lover like DS to do something about this woman. Now, all DS needed was the right moment.

Noah ‘Atlantis’ Faulkes followed the standard routine. He went into the bathroom, undormed, and did a quick sweep for other novas. It was so routine that he nearly did something right there when he discovered he had two here on the ferry with him not 5 meters away. For several seconds, Atlantis fretted about what to do. He could stay in form and just jump over the side. Water was his medium.

‘No, that would be noticed,’ he thought

‘Find out what they are about?’ to which he responded ‘Why not?’

It wasn’t like he was currently working on any projects that were all that important; certainly not important enough to send two novas after him. Noah dormed and stepped back out of the bathroom stall looking very normal again. He looked around to see if he could figure exactly who were the novas. It was surprisingly easy. The far too gorgeous one leaning against the railing, with the ghostly pale skin and waist-length black hair was obviously one and … the beautiful, dark-chocolate one with the equally long black hair striking up a conversation with the first.

‘Great. Now that I know who they are, what do I do?’

Right now, all he could do was stare.

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Lina was looking at the sky most of the time while on the ferry. It was better to look up and guess how many people were staring at you, than to actually know. The sun was beginning to break through small sections of the clouds, and their light beamed down like some sort of holy radiance. She yawned lazily, than heard a voice. At first, it didn't register in her mind. It was just another voice, and not directed at her.

No. It was at her.

What did it say? Was it a girls voice? Why is she talking to me? What was it that the voice said? Am I going crazy? It was a symphony of thoughts that all struck at once, but it was just a moment of fear and the moment had now passed. She's seen before? Who the hell hasn't?

Lina didn't even look at the girl to respond. She just kept her focus on the sky, and the breaking clouds. A small smile came to her face. "With technology, I'd say chances are television. But I live where we are going, and I love where we are coming from, so you might have just seen me around."

It was a moment or two later that Lina thought of the Blackburn. She looked at Dark Spiral, and was taken off her game by the baseline beauty. Still a baseline. She wouldn't have been there.

Lina was completely oblivious to Atlantis.

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‘Oh, that conceited cow,’ DS seethed inwardly.

“Now I know you. You’re that woman with Daniel Ravenshire.”

She ground out the first- baseline – name.

“You two make such an interesting couple” NOT. It must be fascinating to be with someone who’s … well from a different world.”

Dark Spiral carefully scanned their immediate surroundings. No one of importance grabbed her attention, so focused was she on Lina.

“So you are his girlfriend,” DS said, making it unclear if it was a question or a statement.

“What is it like to be with someone like him; to share his time; to be with him? I’m sure someone as young as you are has to be worried about there being other women, right?”

Noah moved casually around the two women talking. His movements randomly took him behind Lina and to the rail. At the rail he was close to his element, water and it gave him comfort. He also looked around him at all the people just going about their daily lives unaware that three … well probably unaware that two novas were within their midst around the third, obvious one.

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Lina smiled. Very fucking interesting. This was one of the first times in Lina's entire life where someone was trying something. Lina couldn't figure out what she was trying, but there was something there. Is she trying to make me doubt Ravenshire? Is she just trying to make me angry? No, I am just being paranoid.

"Ah, so you just read the tabloids and watch fake news. Okay. Yes, I am dating Ravenshire. No, I don't think there is someone else. No, I am not worried." Lina looked back to the sky. She knew there was something in her statements that she was missing. A sort of clue. Lina looked back at her, thinking. Kara popped into her head, but Lina chased it out instantly. She either reads the tabloids, or.. wait? She could be collecting information. Wait, if she read tabloids, she would know me as the light of god.

"Just making conversation, or is there meaning which should be brought to light?" Lina thought of making her hand glow, but that would just be stupid.

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DS had a hole, or at least she thought she did. She slid slightly closer along the railing to Lina. The sunlight casting beams through the cloud cover played an interesting shadow play across her features.

"It’s just that you are so young. You are from somewhere far off in the countryside while he grew up on a major metropolitan area. Frankly, you are no real match for him.”

She tried to make the words come out sounding comforting, but they came out more definitive and absolute instead.

“Besides,” DS said in a near whisper, “you are not alone. You have someone you should be worrying about … not Ravenshire.”

Dark Spiral was leaning in almost face to face with Lina now, so few could see the flash of her teeth.

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The grin only got wider as DS perceived Lina becoming more unsettled.

“You need to go home little girl. Ravenshire has been patient enough with you, but now you need to be gone.”

Black lighting crackled around her right arm and down the railing. Immediately the railing cracked and moaned from the metal fatigue. People ‘oohhhed’ and ‘aaahhhed’ around them, but didn’t yet have the sense to run. Of course, being on a Ferry in the middle of Long Island Sound didn’t help matters.

“Quite frankly, I find your brother to be an annoying little nuisance. He confuses Ravenshire and I wont’ have that.”

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Lina felt surprisingly calm for a moment. They were surrounded by water and spectators. This woman wouldn't try anything, she would be caught.

The calm only lasted a moment though, until Lina realized that the woman was using lightning.

"Excuse me.. " Holy shit! Holy shit! Holy shit! "Who are you again? I think my lover forgot to mention that a.. what? Ex-lover came with the package?" Now is not the time to be masking fear with insults! Holy shit!

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The change in attitude both pleased and confused DS. She would be more pleased to see this wretched slut on the deck pleading for forgiveness, but quivering in fear was a good start.

“Who am I? I’m not his ex- anything, Whore. We are meant to be together and no little farm girl with her pity story about your poor uninspired background is going to keep Ravenshire from me. Me!”

Black lightning coiled down each arm and now the baseline spectators began stumbling to get out of the way.

Just then water poured over the deck. Standing just a few meters away from the two women and apparently made of water stood yet another nova. This one had on a blue jumpsuit that molded to his aqueous form. In a voice that was more fearful than commanding,

“Enough of that now. There will be no altercations on this ferry while Atlantis is here.”

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Lina wondered if her PaKua and Hung Gar training could take the bitch, but decided that she wanted no part of the lightning. She wasn't visibly terrified, but she was just doing an incredible job of masking it.

Lina looked over at Atlantis, and almost wanted to smile. Is he trying to rescue me, or does he just not want a fight going on in the boat. Lina quickly looked around, wondering if her followers had kept their word. She'd caught a glimpse of one of them in Japan, but no one knew that she was coming back. Maybe she should have announced it. No, I can defend myself. Lina waited, trying to figure out what would happen next. Atlantis seemed stern, yet fearful. DS was obviously a crazy bitch, in which Lina wasn't sure she knew a language to converse with other than violence.

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Dark Spiral took Atlantis’ stance and found him wanting.

“I … am not … impressed,” she told the aqueous nova snidely.

Around the trio, baselines were making themselves scarce, even if that mean packing themselves tightly into their cars, the cars of strangers, and even the crew areas. Everyone was seeking some kind of shelter.

DS’s lighting dissipated without a target to scorch. She turned her full attention back on Lina. She strode over to Lina with powerful strides. Pointing her finger, DS began making her demands clear.

“Listen up, child. Nova to nova, you are going to leave Ravenshire alone. He doesn’t want you, he wants me. If you don’t do this, you will suffer. Those precious baseline ties you so deludedly cling to will be cut, starting with those closest to your heart. It is the way of the One Race that those who don’t evolve will be left behind.”

“I’m evolved. You are not. Leave my man alone! Got it?”

What surprised Noah was that someone so close to the water could leave a water-aspected nova behind like they weren’t a threat. Sure, he wasn’t the bravest nova in the world, but this was insane. Maybe that was it. Maybe the black-lighting one was insane. Whatever she was, she had made mistake in discounting him. As he watched the two nova women close, he readied a geyser of water to make his treat felt.

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Lina was getting used to the lightning. It wasn't half as terrifying as the winds, rain, and thunder. Summer lightning is nothing, and this isn't a storm. She repeated this in her head over and over, each time becoming less and less afraid.

Lina walked into the outpointed finger, and right into Dark Spirals face. "You know about as much about me as anyone on this boat, or anyone in Connecticut, or anyone in the entire fucking world for that matter." Her nose was only about an inch away from DS, and Lina was smiling. Her voice lowered to a whisper. "I have no issues killing someone who has even crossed my sight if I don't like the looks of them. My advice is you jump off this boat right now, and swim to the nearest land. And you never show your face around me or anyone I've ever known, or will ever know, again." Lina's hand was a glowing clutched fist.

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The threats of killing held a delicious taste for DS. If this wanton sow was willing to place her chance at evolution between DS and DS’s destiny, it was her funeral. She would waste the body away into ashes without a backward glance. There would be no need to trouble Ravenshire with this. The other threats rolled off the back of Dark Spiral’s shaken and shattered psyche. In the end, no allies or mentors along the path mattered as much as her Raven. She was so sure of it.

“Face you again? How interesting- why don’t I start by removing your fa- …”

The black lighting made an incredible contrast to Lina’s white light fist, so much so that it was s surprise to most people when a jet of cold Long Island Sound water came up and pummeled the Indian nova back away from her pale opponent.

“Why you insignificant –choke- gnat!” Dark Spiral screamed while sputtering through water.

Atlantis was finishing up his kata for firing his water geyser and smiling when DS lashed back out at him. For the tiniest of instance, Atlantis looked secure then his watery arm began to bubble and burn. The man screamed.

Acting more on gut instinct than thought, Lina did a spinning kick into DS’s midsection. It felt like she was kicking a wet cement wall and while she held little hope the attack was effective, it did bring DS’s concentration back to Lina. Lina fell back into a defensive fighting stance when she caught Atlantis waving his arms around rapidly. For an instant, it looked like he tried to clap, but his right arm sped past his failing left. At the same moment, another jet of water came slamming through the ferry, caught DS squarely in the side and swept her overboard … screaming.

Tentatively, Atlantis looked over the side of the ship and shrugged.

“She’s gone,” he said to no one in particular. As people realized the fight was over he turned to Lina.

“Can you make a distraction for me? I need somewhere I can change back and not draw notice.”

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Lina looked at Atlantis, wondering if that was the safe thing to do. To throw her overboard, letting her get away. There wont be words next time. Lina looked back at the spectators who were now drawing. "The art of distraction isn't necessarily my thing." She said in a whisper, wondering if he could hear her.

Her hands began to glow, along with her face. It lit up slowly, and Lina looked incredibly panicked. "Oh god!" She screamed. "Its happening! Hide!" She looked at the crowd. "To the otherside of the ferry! Hurry up!" The glowing became brighter and brighter, and everyone else began to run.

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People scramble rapidly away from the glowing light giving the watery nova a moment to duck back into the closest restroom. When he emerges, moments later looking much more like the average commuter than Lina every could, she notices he is keeping his left arm – the one wounded by Dark Spiral – partially hidden in a newspaper. He then joins the other people in their panicky migration away from Lina’s glowing form. As he leaves, he whispers a ‘Thank you’ to her.

Being flushed overboard had awakened DS to her plight. Once more today she had opened a rift in reality and fallen through to gain some distance. As the anger faded, she felt the drain on her soul more. She had spent too much energy showing off to that cow and not enough scaring her … or maybe killing her. Anyway, she had opted to open a farther warp to safety after that, back to somewhere safer were she could ponder her next strike.

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After everyone was out of sight, Lina decided to lay down on the deck. She was alone on the side of the ferry, and it was comfortable. Do I tell Ravenshire? Will he just worry? Yell? I don't want him to. After several minutes of nothing happening, someone gets the nerve up to go check on Lina. Several more people find their way over, and surround Lina. She tries to ignore them with her eyes closed, but it proved to be too much of a bother.

She opened them, and found that people were looking down at her. One was kneeling, contemplating on whether or not he should test her pulse. When she opened her eyes, they took a step back. Lina had to smile.

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The trip had finished with much speculation. The police were there when they arrived, but since the sole piece of damage as the one piece of railing, there wasn’t enough to keep everyone there. For Noah Faulkes, it was just the weary finality to his trip home. He found his car in the long term parking and carefully rode home. Only at the last driveway before home did he see something that grabbed his attention. There was the tall, thin young woman whose life he had just been involved with less than an hour ago. She still looked better than his wife ever would in her silky red dress with the long slit, but he tried to put it out of his mind. There waiting for her was a boy maybe half her age and a man he would kill to be right about now. Noah doubted that guy would have a problem talking down that crazy woman. Fear wouldn’t have resonated in his voice … and he got the girl too.

Noah pulled into his own driveway and there were his two boys playing about. His wife, old, but not rejuvenated, like him would be inside getting dinner ready. It would be a happy normal life, and that was the life he was trying to protect.

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The taxi from the ferry was quick. There was one waiting when she got there, and though it sped the entire way, it seemed to take forever. As the cab pulled up to the curb, Lina spotted Ravenshire notice her through a window. In an instant he was out the door and around her. "We got a day or two off, so I decided to come say Hi." Lina said before he could ask, and she wrapped her arms around him.

"Zach and I missed you." Ravenshire said to her, and Lina pulled away from the hug, smiling. A car passed her and turned into the driveway next door. Lina was paying it no mind.

"No where near as much as I missed you, I bet. Where is Zach, by the way?"

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