Difference between revisions of "Logs:Signal Flare"

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Latest revision as of 22:44, 12 July 2019

Signal Flare
Dramatis Personae

Hive, Jax, Ash, Shane, B, Scramble, Joshua, Ion, Ryan, Rachel, Dusk, Matt

2019-07-10


(set in the wake of Flicker's capture.

Location

Hive


Very, very late at night on Wednesday (or maybe very, very early in the morning on Thursday), there's a rapidly expanding presence that floods out through the city, insinuating itself uncharacteristically quietly into mind after mind (after mind after mind), casting a blanketing far-reaching net across the city. A sudden fierce psionic flare sears through the minds of the core raid team members. It's a sharp and nearly panicked burst of mental energy -- almost immediately followed by another. And another. The simmering fury beneath Hive's minds -- beneath all of their minds, for this moment -- is nearly palpable. << wake up. >>

It comes oddly softly, a whispering chorus of myriad overlapping voices rustling together, broader and deeper and quieter than Hive has ever been before. For all the gentled hush of the words, the firm mental grip that sinks into each of them, pulls them out of slumber or away from whatever they were currently engaged with, is not soft at all. And is, decidedly, not a request.

One mind has definitely not been sleeping, vibrant and too-wired with summertime energy. The painfully bright technicolor vision of an in-progress mural somewhere on a wall (a pair of silhouetted bodies embracing across a crumbling fence, its details yet to be fully rendered) gives way to a spike of alarm and the vague background sensation of sticky paint dripping from a now-mostly-forgotten brush down their fingers. An urgent questioning worry: << (something's wrong) >> << (what's wrong?) >> overlaps nearly simultaneously with a sharp unease: << (we're too big.) >>

Sleepy dark and damp dirt unearthed, another mind is jolted from sleep only to bear witness to a dark bedroom - neon echoes of the street mural plaster over the unadorned walls. << (What? What? What is it? Do we know yet? Why are we so big?) >> swimming throughout this mind are tiny fish that bite at each question with a quiet fuck, noisily gnawing but never diminishing their target in the slightest.

The intricate strains of a Paganini Caprice break off abruptly. There's an ache here, in arms, in sore fingers. Even though the bow is lowered the music continues playing mentally -- the next few bars of it, at least, looped over and over as, unconsciously, fingers twitch tiny motions mimicking their way through the fingering. It's a somatic impulse that is running on autopilot under the far more forefront: << ... what the fuck? >>

Here there's mostly darkness. Cold, wet, deep -- less quiet than might be expected. An alien background chatter of small darting minds seeking food, seeking refuge. The bright tingle of electrical signatures registering through the water. An irritably cranky stirring somewhere under it all where previously there has just been the pleasant coolness of a kelp-lined hollow and water flowing over gills and now there is --

-- a string of cursing in quiet Vietnamese. << This can't be good. >>

The desert is scorching hot and seems to go on forever. Strange, immense birds circle high overhead, their raucous calls echoing in the distance. Hive is singing, a familiar melody they cannot place and haunting words in a language that they do not understand, as they --

-- start awake half tangled in sheets, face buried in silky hair. The distant strains of some late night jam session up on the room drift in through the curtains fluttering in their open window. << Aight. We grabbing our gear or nah? >>

There's a constant shifting of red and white lights, flashing odd patterns against the brick wall, the red-streaked sidewalk. Here there is chaos -- blood streaked against purple gloves, a repressed anger as they need to tell a cop Yet Again to back away from their patient, a steady calm that has shut out the yells and cries to narrow their focus to only the heavily spurting arterial bleed in front of them. The sudden wrest of attention pulls hands from packed dressing, brings another well of blood down an already slick thigh. For a moment there is a sick wrench of worry, a slam of guilt -- and then a very deliberate psionic prising that peels their attention back down. And continues on.

Somewhere farther distant it's chaos of a different stripe. A very similar flash of lights, though. Raised voices, a trio of police cars -- at least two of the officers' guns already drawn. One, ever hopeful, has handcuffs. The buzz of alcohol is thick and heavy in their mind, mingling with a permanent wired state of heady exhilaration as they -- yells back at the cops, in callous unconcern even as the cold metal of handcuffs close around wrists. "-- Not a good fucking time to -- oh shit no I ain't talking to you clowns --"

-- just before the world dissolves into a bright lightning flash, rematerializing in a quiet and quite unfamiliar office park, the metal cuffs still dangling from one wrist. << {Where you want me?} >>

Intertwined outwardly just as in: here there is a tangle of limbs, a scruffy cheek nestled against feathers, tattooed arm draped around a muscular back. The tug pulls them both awake -- the strains of Paganini draws out a reflexive stab of ache that is, entirely, subsumed by the worry that follows.

<< Did somebody break us? >>

<< -- should go up and check. >>

A sleepy fumbling for clothes comes along with a steady mental pulling of their own -- trying to think concretely of sharp tongue and sharp wit, bony frame and grinding teeth, of strong and graceful buildings and a heavy coffee addiction. << Where are you? >>

The bathtub is huge, filled with warm water redolent of sweet spices and nearly opaque with a fine silvery shimmer that swirls in response to its occupants' every movement. One hand draws a soft washcloth over the velvety skin of a great, dark wing--even in this spacious bathroom, it cannot stretch out entirely--down below the waterline, then brings it back up start again.

The shiver of pleasure this draws ripples through the network, soon followed by the slide of soft wing against sudsy-slick skin. The very gentle trace of sharp fangs against throat ends with an entirely different shiver. A tense of muscles, a ferociously hungry snarl of mind scrambling out to claw its way along the familiar signals that come flooding in. Examining the vastness of this network with a looming horror -- darting lightly from one awakening mind to the next with a growing gnawing dread of a different sort as a question begins forming.

Despite their fear, despite their confusion, the many-layered voice that does the asking feels incongruously calm. << Where is Flicker? >>