Log:Drinks and Indian Food in the Parlor
It's a good thing the Scholar had the Coward to ease him into things, because he'd have been hilariously overwhelmed otherwise. Their reunion has put him at ease and (he hopes) prepared him for what's on the other side of the door to his room. So he bathes and dresses with a sense of nervous anticipation. Will Eilis and Pierce and Caleb and Addie be here, or...whomever they are, in this liminal space? He hopes so. He puts on something more comfortable for today: a dark red shirt, the sleeves rolled up, and black pants. Red's a good color on him, he decides, even at this age.
He pauses when he opens his door, peering out into the hall. More doors stretch in either direction, some blank and some with images carved on them. He steps out, inspects his with a critical eye, running his fingers over the image of a man buried in books.
The very confused 'Leon' stumbles through. But after seeing others he pauses. "Where are we? Is this Hell?" Clearly he was still in the mindset of Leon Colton. "I thought we won over the demons?"
The Rogue spent the better part of his time waking up in the facility trying not to get dizzy and throw up. Trying to reconcile where one was, where their wife went to and if their kids were okay was jarring when you also note that you look fifteen years younger than you remember yourself being. Scrappy? yes. Shaven? Weirdly also yes. someone shaved him? Did he do this? Christ why couldn't he remember?
Efficiency; It was the key to survival in an unknown condition. Caleb... (was he Caleb?) and looked around to see if there was a digital panel somewhere (why'd he know what he wanted to look for?). Ow. He checked the shelf he kept (or apparently did) and ran his fingers across the few things there. Too weird. Time to do recon and get the lay of the land and made his way down the hall noting the door he was leaving, in a rather nondescript pair of olive coveralls. At the very least he walked with purpose as if this were routine and he belonged there. He made it almost entirely into the parlor, sleeve scraping the wall on occasion. After veering into it for the third time a hand went to his right eye to cover it. Maybe that will help the dull headache, and if nothing else, help actually having depth-perception after being a year and a day without. He spotted 'Leon' and lifted his finger up and made a circle with his finger out of habit to check for a run down of who was all around.
'Leon' on the other hand was still confused. He did not recognize Caleb, he was younger, didn't remind him of /his/ Caleb. But then again... He did look like it, except... younger. So he decides to take a chance and, with nothing to go on, aside from what he remembers... which is not much... He asks the younger man, "Is your father named Caleb Colton?" He was definitely still operating as 'Leon Colton'. And this was still confusing and jarring to him.
Eventually the Scholar leaves off poking at his door, makes his way to the parlor. He blinks at Leon and Caleb--or, these men who knew by those names. The Rogue looks younger than the Scholar remembers him, and in an entire reversal, the Scholar is substantially older, if clearly the same person. That big white stripe in his hair and those mismatched green and brown eyes can't belong to more than one person, even here. The Scholar only vaguely remembers Leon, but the question begins to orient him.
"If...I understand this place correctly," he says, carefully, because the Adjudicator seems rattled, "this probably *is* Caleb." He raises his eyebrows at the Rogue to see if he has that right. After a moment, he adds, "Or was."
The Rogue turned to Leon pulling his free hand back slowly in case the need arose to protect himself which seemed to be not at all teh case. On closer inspection he looked relieved, "Leon, it's you." Yeah that was Caleb
The Rogue looked to 'Sebastian' and seemed to reorient himself quietly and holding his head, walked over and offered one hand out to greet his ...was he a cousin? well he was an ally last he knew. He looked to the man who seemed to have insight of the overhead, "Why's my family not here?" big question though, he'd be damned if he actually could remember what his mother either looked or sounded like or even her name.
'Leon' Or whoever this man is, looks relatively the same age as Leon Colton. Close to it. But he is clean shaven now. His hair is no longer just a messy dirty blond. Looks more blond now. And he definitely looks confused. He seems to grow quiet now, letting 'Caleb' make the questions, while he merely tries to make tails or head of wherever this place is. Though at some point he mentions, "What is this? Is this Hell? I expected more fire... Or is this heaven?"
The Scholar accepts the handshake, firm and friendly, with his left hand. There's a ring on his ring finger, silver and copper. A ring the Rogue will recognize as belonging to Caleb's father.
If the Scholar is disappointed the greeting isn't more effusive it doesn't show. "Your--the one who was your brother, Colorado, is here. I haven't seen the others yet, but maybe they're here too." He sounds hopeful for that; it occurs to him only now that he could have woken up without Colorado, and that's not a possibility he wants to contemplate. He sets the thought aside, shakes his head at Leon's questions. "I don't think it's either. Or if it is," he scans the parlor, eyes lingering on the piano, "it's very disappointing." He smiles when he says that, for some reason or another.
He continues, "Colorado's been here before. So, whatever this is, whatever's happening to us, I think it must be something outside of those concepts. Something else all-together."
While the others talk, 'Leon' is completely mesmerized by the flatscreen TV. He even touches it a few times as if to assess it is real. What was happening? Why are they even here? And this is when he notices something even more amiss as hr touches his chest and breathes in deeply. "Okay so I apparently been cured of my Asthma... or something along those lines." The seems to be a relief for him. After listening to 'Bastian', he starts to orient himself as well. "This looks more like some sort of prison..."
The Rogue was soul hurt. 'They' weren't here, and while he couldn't exactly remember, it hurt. He didn't want it to, but he wasn't awake enough for a good ruse. God he had a headache. He turned from Leon greeting him to Sebastian. and just looked around and said "Waiting room." His jaw tightened and while conflict of reality came back he squint his wet eyes shut. He swayed on his feet and offered, "Glad you're all right. Rado's here?" He reaches into his pocket and pressed a hand to whatever he stuffed in his pocket on the go. and sighed. Still with him.
The Scholar winces in sympathy. "He is," the Scholar confirms for the Rogue, who was Caleb, his brother-in-law, after a fashion. "I'm sure he'll come out as soon as he's up and about." Or, he hopes he will. He's still getting used to this place, to how he and the Coward fit together in it. "And, I'm glad you're here too. Colorado will be happy to see you." That much, at least, he can speak to with certainty.
His gaze tavels to the TV. He studies it, distracted. Eventually, he says to Leon, "Possibly," sounding uncertain. "Though I don't know why they'd keep us so comfortable, if it is." And indeed, everything they really need is here. Personal spaces, clothing, any food or drink they might want, all the books they could imagine, even a piano.
"So all our needs are met almost immediately." Leon posits after some thought. "I never seen a place like this. But it doesn't seem to be any worse then what I was expecting upon death. Assuming I even died. How peculiar then. So basically it makes sure we are taken care off." Then he adds, "Probably something different then a prison then."
"Seems awful like a prison to me, cuz." There's the man they all know as Colorado, walking in. He looks considerable different from Rado used to; he's healthy as a horse, almost glowing with vitality. His stride is long and confident. The very first thing he does is go to the Rogue and hug him, hard. "Cale. My God, you're here." His voice shimmers with emotion.
The Rogue was still swaying on his feet slightly; more listing to one side after a time and correcting. He went to have a seat and said with a detached thoughtfulness, "What's the difference between a maze and a labyrinth? How can you be expected to know if you can't tell a room from a prison?" Some things done change and paramount of that was that the Rogue trusted nothing at face value. A hand lifted to squeeze Scholar's shoulder and stayed there for support and to have one thing that wasn't conflicting in his head having only one memory of the man. That was he did until Colorado came in. This was too much. The Rogue turned and hugged him hard, "God, Rado, I thought you were toast."
The Scholar smiles at the Coward's arrival, beaming almost. He says to the Rogue, "A labyrinth *is* a maze." He pauses, adds, "A specific one, if you're thinking of *the* Labyrinth. But they're the same thing. Not all rooms are prisons, though." He thinks of his--Sebastian's--collections room on the Munson Estate, or the room he and Colorado shared on the Ranch. "Not all," he repeats, voice low. He's looking at the piano again, thoughtful.
The reunion brought a wry smile to his lips. When he suddenly thwaps his head, "Pierce! Has anyone seen my brother? He has to be around this place to. I know it. If we all are it means he should be here as well as Eilis and Addie." He was starting to grow less disoriented and instead more alert and capable. "So perhaps all of us should be here then..." This he pauses to add, "What a curious place this is..."
The Coward kisses the Rogue on the forehead without shame, rocking him like an older brother does. "I was. Only temporary. Sit, Cale. Want something to drink?" He smiles at the Scholar, the corners of his eyes crinkling with crows-feet. But then he glances at the man formerly known as Leon and sighs. "All of us might not be here. I'll explain."
That makes 'Leon' crestfallen for a moment. And he gives a sigh as he flops on one of the couches. "Well Rado, I'm all ears. You always been the smarter of us. So I'll trust anything you say."
The Rogue just held onto his brother tightly and stood there, conflicting emotions dampening Coward's shoulder, "I did the best I could. I'm sorry, Rado. I'm so fuckin sorry." More emotions than he afforded himself to show as a rancher and you could set your watch by how soon they'll get wrangled in again. "If Rado's here maybe... maybe Pierce and Eilis are alive." he took a deep breath and started feeling nauseous again and sat, "So... what do we know?" Yeah the accent was off, way off. That fliny look hung in his eyes- plural? Oh shit he had two again.
"Hopefully they're here with us," the Scholar says. "We'll know soon enough. If it's..." He stops, makes a face. He supposes if the Coward hadn't been waiting at his door he'd have stayed in his room. "It might be jarring for them, so they could be slow to come out. Probably best to give them time for that." He moves to join the two of them, probably intending to help get things from...wherever food and drink came from. Obviously somewhere.
"None of it was your fault, hermanito," the Coward murmurs. "You did your best. I know." He lets the Rogue go, with the kind of grace that only comes from understanding when people need to pick themselves up off the floor and can't abide help. Setting a hand on Leon's shoulder, he grips him fondly. "We don't know too much. I'll tell you what we do. First, I got to tell you. People sometimes don't come back, and we don't know why." He meets each of their eyes in turn. Going to the Scholar, he puts his arm around his waist, reassuring himself that Bastian came back. "Jeremiah never returned. Nahimana and Gabe never returned. We don't know why."
Looks at the man he thought it's Rado, but how could he be anyone of then his cousin. However, typical of him, he merely sits while his gears in his mind start to work. He stays quiet during everything spoken. "So if they don't return they vanish from existence."
The Rogue pulled what it was out of his pocket and it was- god help us all- the folded black and white photo of Gideon. That child that haunted him across the desert, and missing son. "Rado...where do I find /him/?" He thought about it and looked around for the trigger-happy yin to his low-key yang. "Haven't been around yet. I can't... I haven't found Addie." his replaced eye twinced and he looked up to the fellas. Worry knit on his brow and he looked at the tv, familiar, nd alien and back to them. "So...now what?"
The Scholar leans into the Coward, resting his head against the other man's shoulder briefly. He sighs at the reassurance the contact brings. Prison, afterlife, or something else entirely, he's pretty sure he can handle it with the Coward there.
He sees that picture of Gideon, and blanches, remembering two boys he and Colorado had been, in effect, given to raise by Eilis. And he knows, in his blood and bones, they won't be here. He goes rigid, swallows. "Oh," he says, voice soft.
The Coward realizes what the Rogue is showing him, and sighs a deep, heartaching sigh. "I don't know, Cale. There haven't been any children here. I just don't know." But he suspects. And he won't say it. Not here, not now to his grieving brother (who isn't actually his brother, but the emotional ties grown during Prosperity are strong). "I don't know about any vanishing," he adds to Leon, a little ascerbic. "They could well be in some other...place, like this. Or maybe they were released back to the real world. Whatever that is."
"Does anyone understand better this situation. It all feels so strange. Like nothing makes any sense." The Adjudicator states. "Why are we even here. Where is here for that matter." He sighs. A pained one. At least he wasn't sick anymore. In fact he felt stronger in terms if his health. "It couldn't have been a dream, right?" He calls out to the others sharing the Parlor with him. He remains seated. "So if we can find someone who knows what is happening, maybe we can figure it out?"
The Rogue pulled a leg up in the chair he was slumped into and ran his thumb over the picture of... his kid? why didn't he remember him before this Did he have a kid when he was a quartermaster on a transport mining shuttle? Did he remember there being one? Why was he always surrounded by mining? The immature part of his brain tried to remember if there were space cows and that's where he cut that thought off. His soul hurt. "Why, Leon?" he paused and noted to the cousin type across from him, "Why on earth would you trust em?" His jaw tightened. If there was anything he was allergic to it was gettin played. He weighed the paper in his fingers the photo was printed on and murmured, "We'll figure this out." For now he had to accept the bitter pill of not being able to instantly change a thing.
The Scholar regains his composure, clears his throat. He shakes his head at Leon. "If it was a dream, it's one I shared with Colorado, and," he holds up his left hand, the one with the silver and copper wedding band, "I somehow brought this back with me. I don't see how that could happen in a dream."
He rubs at his eyes, trying to ignore the dull ache of remembering sons he no longer has. "I have to agree with Caleb. Anyone claiming they know what's happening could be party to this, in which case..." He shrugs, helplessly.
"Talked to Bella. She's the one with that damn creepshow on her door." Colorado doesn't need to describe it if they've seen it; it's a naked woman covered in tattoos and piercings, kneeling among dead bodies. "She's been here three times. She's the one told me most of what I know. Whether we can trust her?" He shakes his head, leans into the Scholar. "Any rate, she told me not everybody comes back. That the Devil, Ol' Scratch, she's seen in two previous...lives." He hesitates over what word to use for that. "She thinks she's seen Mo previously, too."
"It gets stranger and stranger. So in other words what we lived was fake? The Adjudicator states as he thinks thing over. When he checks his pockets for a cannabis cigarette, he instead pulls something out. What he pulls out is a leather patch of skin, and when he looks at it, his eyes slightly open wide. "What the..." It was Leon's specific devil's mark... "Okay... So it is definitely not a dream. So I suppose we are..." He sighs, "I'm not sure anymore. Perhaps the Creepshow can help us?"
The Rogue wasn't a conspiracy theorist per se, but he wasn't about to trust anyone or anything blind which was clear. What was also clear was when Leon pulled out the patch of skin with his birthmark on it he went green. That, the implications, and his equilibrium being 'off' was not helping in tandem. "Chriiiiist on a cracker put that away. holy shit, leon." He rubbed his face with a sigh. Information! we had some information to go off of. "Uhhh maybe? she was with us. I hate to say it, but aside from his transgressions? I liked Mo."
It helps to hold the Coward; the familiar sensation is a much-needed reminder that while some things didn't come back with the Scholar, others did. He looks askance at him, one eyebrow up. "She's seen a demon and the Adversary before?" He sighs, rueful. "Of course, they *would* be the ones to come back around."
His mouth flattens at the sight of Leon's former Mark, and he quickly takes to studing the ring on his finger, tries not to imagine waking up to his white hair and one of his eyes in a box. He nods at Caleb. "If Colorado saw her here, it seems more likely she's one of us. So she's been through this more times, and may know more, but isn't necessarily more informed than we would be in her place. Mo and the Adversary, though..." Well, if he saw them, he could ask after Giles, and consider how hard he wanted to punch him.
The Coward frowns at the weird thing Leon pulls out. Recognizing it, he sputters a sound half of hilarity and half of what-the-fuck. "Jesus, Leon. You always were the sternest out of us." He stays standing, arm around the Scholar, reluctant to move away from him. "I liked Mo too," he says, quieter. "Think he liked us, for all that's worth." He kisses Scholar on the cheek, tells him softly, "I'm sorry about the boys, sweetheart. We loved 'em." The twins Eilis had borne, before dying from her demon-given wounds and the stress of birthing twins. Part of the odd family the Coltons became.
The Adjudicator himself is not sure why he has that on him. But he puts it away, so as not to make them uncomfortable. "I say we need information to know what is going. For now this is my hypothesis: We are actually living these lives. I'm not sure how... but we know it's not a dream... Or else that mark..." The Adjudicator, wisely, decides to change the topic. "All right. Who is this Creepshow and thus she know enough about our current predicament? Or is she an unreliable narrator?"
The Rogue stopped talking and just put the photo away and slunk into the armchair. They weren't going to find the answer right now and he just needed to focus on the room not moving. Finally he muttered, "Leon... some of us ain't t'the point of hypothesizing if ti's all the same." His hand curled into a ball, knuckles blanched and pressed to the divot of his lip. He took a deep breath and tried to think. his head felt filled with rubber attempting to parse thoughts. "Shit. I know Cillian. I need to find him and Evan...Aaron...whoever." Odd combo perhaps but it seemed to make some passive sense to him.
"We did," the Scholar agrees, his voice quiet. "We had two boys, just like we wanted." He gives the Coward a small, private smile at the kiss, tightens his grip around his waist to anchor himself. He listens to each of them in turn, begins to frown. "Liked you," he echoes. "Maybe that's...it." He stares at point across the room. "If Mo's similar to us, perhaps he also had his background...set for him. His motivations, possibly even some of his actions. So even if he knew you from other lives, wouldn't want to hurt you, he might have had no choice." He looks at the Coward directly. "Like we were discussing. Only in his case, maybe he can remember some of what's come before." He raises his eyebrows, to see if that makes any sense.
He cuts a look at Leon, adds, "She's no more unreliable than any of us, I don't think."
"Cuz, I feel unreliable as anything," the Coward says, rueful. "You seen the picture on my door? There's figures fighting a dragon, and me, hiding from the fight. I wouldn't depend on me. Not if I was any of you." He falls quiet, his face lining with pain. Then, clearing his throat, he says, "I'm gonna go fetch us some victuals. I'll be back directly." He kisses Scholar again and goes to do that.
The Adjudicator continues to sit on the sofa, "Hmm..." A bit of taking a couple of deep breath, he was trying to understand all this and what it mean to each on if them. "I just don't get it. It feels like we are blank, and someone -- " He takes a deep breath and exhales. "Doesn't look like we will solve this. Might as well continue and see where it leads to. Besides I don't think they want us dead."
The Rogue looked to Leon and was trying hard not to snap. "I'm not /blank/ and I ain't empty. I actually have feelings and...and a wife... i think... a family." He laughed at the utter absurdity of it, "I can't... help they keep... dyin and... Look, I'm nto... i'm not a cypher alright?" Those eyes were sharp and jsut amped up right now. "My head is killin me, I have too many memories that don't match up, and everythin important to me I tried to take back gone. Again." Okay heeee was angry.
The Scholar watches the Coward go with a pained expression, looks like he wants to follow, but then that exchange between the Rogue and the Adjudicator happens. He moves so he's between them. "We're not blank," he tells Leon, tone firm. "If we were we wouldn't remember these lives. But I remember," he stops, swallows, clearly changes what he was going to say, "those banishings, I remember everything from that day I first met Colorado in the library, clear as a bell." He sighs, kneels down in front of Caleb. "It's going to take time, but we'll figure out what going on and get out of this. Colorado's right, though--we should eat, have something to drink. I think we could get you something for your head, if you want. Then you can go find some of the others, try to put some things together." Feel like we're doing something, so we don't stew about doing nothing, he thinks and doesn't say.
He gives an agreeable nod. "You both are right." Then he relaxes more on the sofa. And starts looking to the ceiling.
The Coward is gone for a few minutes. He really likes playing with the dispenser. Returning, he pushes a trolley with several varieties of booze on it. Some soft drinks and water, too, like an afterthought. Indian food as well. "Seemed comforting," he says about the food, parking the trolley in front of the couches. "Don't worry about dropping anything on the furniture. It's all brand new the next morning. Can drink yourself blind and wake up fine, too." Coward might intend to present this as a benefit, but really it just comes out like he's unhappy about it.
He pours himself some brandy. "Before I was Rado, I was a man named Bates," he begins, voice soft. "A bad man. A man who cared about nothing and nobody. Who was not just craven, he was villainous. So. I wouldn't trust me."
The Rogue wasn't angry with Leon in particular, but the man was absent of insulation on the topic and was not sitting with the concept of things being taken from him at all well. He was huddled up in teh chair looking just blanched and withdrawn from wanting to accept the truths of the room. In his hand was a folded picture. In his eyes? Bloodshot and tears that were fighting to be retained. He just got up and felt tired allover again. "Last... time... I watched Evan die because I couldn't think fast enough... this time? I watched Evan die because I couldn't...fucking...think fast enough. I always had em too. In the desert? Almost lost em and I thought hey, fianlly this is good. I'll make it up to him. Someone... had to fuck it all up."
Well, Glenn as the Loner had to show his face eventually. Usually he's fairly good at just going unnoticed but there's too many people back in the facility now for him to sneak about with any ease. He strides from the direction of the dining room, apple in one hand and a bottle of beer in the other. Maybe what's left of dinner, or maybe just diner period. Though he's back in his usual oversized black sweater and grey pajama pants and barefoot, as is his habit in the facility. He looks annoyed, but he always looks annoyed so who can say if it's actually anything. He does slow a bit as he steps into the room, eyes quickly passing over those present.
The Scholar sighs, ducks his head. "We'll find out who, or what, is going this to us," he says, to both the Adjudicator and the Rogue. "Sooner or later." Sooner, he hopes. Really, how many times through this can their minds handle. (And what if that's the point, he thinks, and doesn't say.)
He stands, moves to the Coward and the cart he's brought. He takes the Coward's free hand, holds it between his for a moment. "Any one of us might be like that, including me." He stares into his eyes for several seconds, lets go, takes up the bottle of brandy and pours one for himself. "So I'll wake up sober, with no hangover?" He doesn't wait for an answer, just pours himself a nice healthy glass.
He sets the bottle down, smiles to see the Loner, who he knows as Glenn, who'd sacrificed himself for Angeline. He's much older than the Loner will recall, but those eyes and that hair can't belong to too many people, not even here.
The Adjudicator looks over at the Scholar, and listens intently. "Yes but we'd have to figure a weakness or something to exploit." He sighs a bit, feeling frustrated as well. "We just need to keep our eyes open."
The Coward bends his head to the Scholar's. Fighting to keep his grief and horror in, he nods. He sniffs, packs it all away yet again. Pours bourbon for the Rogue, and presses it on him. "Have a little. Not too much, now." When the Loner comes in, he looks over at him, and the smile he offers him is pure Colorado Colton: heartsore, weary. Despite that, he's a lot healthier than Colorado ever was. "Glenn. Good to see you."
The Adjudicator gets up from where he was seated. "I'll go sleep some. Maybe later we can think better." He gets up and leaves for his room.
The Rogue stayed silend for a while and shook his head. Too many factors and drily he said, "Thanks for pointing out the obvious." He rubbed his face and looked at the tray and reached not for the booze but for the water. He looked to Loner and upnodded, 'hey. seat's unoccupied." Gesturing to where the Adjudicator was. "feel free. Glad you're...well.." he wasn't going to presume alright but offered, "upright."
The Loner crunches a bite of his apple as he heads over to the vacated chair instead of slinking on by and ducking back into his room. It only took three times being here to force him to be social. Still chewing on his apple he tucks up into the chair, pulling his feet under him to sit crosslegged. "You all recovering?" And the accent is back, an obvious Scottish burr, but not so heavy as to be hard to understand. He chases down the bite of apple with a swig of beer and passes his gaze over the others again, settling on the Rogue, shrugging off the comment. "I'm almost getting used to popping up back here."
The Scholar pauses to grip one of the Coward's arms, watches the Adjudicator go, the Loner join them. He has a sip of his brandy, blinks and cosiders the tumbler. "Very nice," he murmurs, resolves to not drink it too fast. He has no idea if Sebastian's father's problems with alcohol were part of that life or a part of him, and doesn't want to determine if it's the later just now.
He starts poking around at the food. All of it's new to him, so he's unsure where to start. Glancing up, he says to the Loner, "As best we can," tilts his head. "How many...times, have you been through this?"
"No, I don't reckon I'm recovering," the Coward says. He looks fine, better than fine, physically. It's inside that's all torn up. Watching the Loner sit. He squints as if trying to imagine what apple + beer must taste like. "You did a fine thing for Angeline, Glenn."
The Rogue reckoned it would taste like bitterness and fury, but, eh, he wasn't asked. To Glenn's question he shook his head slowly biting back his words and wrestling with that thing they do. It wasn't wearing well on him. "I don't... get it... we did what we had to. We got out. Why are we here? Why they keep takin everyone from us?' His eyes flinchedand he jsut covered the one giving him issue with his hand swirling his water in teh glass in hte other. "What'd we miss?" because of course to him it was a minute detail to outclever a system and win. But he never won. Even winning he didn't win.
"Three" Loner states, his tone a bit dry but not directed at Scholar, more a general annoyance with the situation at hand. "I will say, they do feed us well, even if the entertainment is crap." He flicks his eyes towards the TV with an annoyed frown. He looks at Coward, then slowly shakes his head. "Just wanted to make ammends." There's a pause. "He just wanted to make ammends." As if he's trying to draw a line between himself and Glenn. Everyone has a coping mechanism.
He looks towards the Rogue and winces. "I lived the first time. Connor..." He pauses as he realizes the others wouldn't know that name. "Evan and I were going back to London and then.. here we were. I think survivng to the end might actually be worse." He shakes his head slowly. "I'm sorry."
The Scholar leaves off examining the food and moves closer to the Coward, standing next to him in a companionable way, like he wants to be be supportive via proximity, yet not intrusive. He gives the Rogue a sympathetic glance, stares down into his brandy. "And why keep us here like this," he wonders, voice low.
He bobs his eyebrows, unable to disagree that survival isn't precisely a victory. He takes a drink, savors it, studies the TV again. His expression indicates he has no idea what he's seeing.
The Rogue looked up to Loner and nodded in slow comisseration. He asked curiously, "Was it scary? Did it hurt?" His jaw tightened with worry, flint blue eyes looking from Scholar and his... not... brother and stayed on Once-Glenn. 'I'll be honest I don't know... how long Cillian and I have been at this. My memory's still garbage there. All i know is we keep figuring out how to tilt the system to live and... lose." He looked to Glenn with a quiet, but intense curiosity. "What happens when you die?"
"I may not be the person to ask." Once-Glenn says with a small shake of his head. "Both times I've died were.. different. Glenn wanted to die, he was ready for it and doing it that way was like falling asleep." He turns the apple over in his hand, staring at it for a moment before continuing his answer. "As Callum? Sure, I was impaled through the head, but Callum didn't feel pain." He grimaces at bringing up that particular memory. "By then I.. he was pretty torn apart anyway." He sighs softly bringing the apple up to his mouth. "But then it's just like waking up from a nightmare, a bit of a jolt and some confusion." He takes another crunchy bite of apple and chews away.
"I know this was only the first time," the Scholar says into his brandy. He has another drink. "No other memories, not even confusing ones. Just Sebastian's." He studies the Loner as he answer's the Rogue's questions, expression growing taut. He grunts, rubs at his eyes. "The sooner we can sort out some way out of here the better," he mutters. He sighs, nods towards the hall of rooms. "I'll see you two later." Off he goes, probably to track down the Coward again.
The Rogue flinched as the truths shared. Ugh, impaled in the head. he didn't even want to try to imagine that one. His fingers rubbed his forehead unaware of the sympathetic gesture. He gave his own face a light slap murmuring something about getting his shit together. he took a long drink of his water. in the end his glance tracked scholar with a faint upnod and back to not-quite-Glenn. He murmured, "Maybe you're right. Maybe surviving is worse. Maybe it's a wash." It was going to take a while to come to terms with. He watched the other leave again and shared, "Can't... I can't find Addie. I don't suppose..." He didn't finish the sentence and by the end just didn't seem to expect the Loner from having an answer as to if he'd seen her either.
The Loner rubs his chin as he thinks about it for a moment. "I.. I remember her face from the island. Not sure I've really ever talked to her any of the times we've been out there, but I think she's one of us." There's a odd tone as he speaks the word 'us', as if those who come here before being shucked out again make up a special brotherhood, if not quite family. As far as he sees it. "I've not seen her, yet. But there's lots of us around and some people spend more time than not in their rooms.. recovering." He's trying to be reassuring, but perhaps his face gives away the fraction of a lie that might be behind those words. That some don't come back.
The Rogue was starting to get the idea of what 'us' indicated after the jarring and not quite gentle-handed update to him that his kids were never real already. The man wasn't doing well, but he was working on doing an admirable enough job of keeping his shit together. He sniffed, and tightened his jaw playing it off cool. the bloodshot in his eyes were telling another story but what could they change? "Yeah I mean... maybe?" It was still, at his core, a bit much for him. He tilted his head back and worked to keep thing conversational having no insulation for loss, "What has anyone to gain for taking things we care about away from us over and over again? It's messed up. So...fucking messed up." He laughed, though it was bitter and the tears started to sting his cheeks, "You know how many times I have failed to keep Aaron... Evan... whatever alive? Shit, man, I might be the worst friend ever." If they ever even really knew one another. "The irony is sick."
The Loner visibly flinches at the mention of Evan dying, and a look of guilt crosses his face. "I know how you feel, I wouldn't have survived the first one without him. He's probably my only friend and I don't even recognize him once we're back in those.. whatevers." He sighs. "I wish I could say it ges easier, but coming back from Glenn has probably torn me up more than either of the others. He actually cared about more than himself." He sighs and sets the half-eaten apple on the table. It'll get cleaned up tonight afterall. "All I can do, all we can do, is plow through it until we find our way out."
The Rogue drank his water. Still, for the grim commiseration he watched the Loner with a faint nod. No arguments from the Rogue. He chortled softly, "Man. don't I know it. Before this? Cillian and I? Pretty much decided to pull up stakes and leave everyone else to fend for their own ass. opted to sacrifice everyone if we fucking had to to get out...and we did. We made it back to another station but I'll be honest it felt like shit, but it was doing what needed doing. This?"
He flinched slowly and sighed looking at the apple core like it was a standing metaphor. "I loved that damn town, man. My people were scared and we did what we had to do together- Christ," He sighed and mumbled the worst of it. "I had a family again, Glenn... And they made sure to fuckin take taht from us too. So no." Eyes fell sidelong to the Loner, "I dunno holding on helps... but all the same I can't give up til I can figure out if Addie's alright or not." Shoulders rose and fell with the matter-of-fact math of it. "They took everything else. Gotta take it back now."
He stood up and looked to the Loner with an appraising nod. "We might not win, but we can draw like a sonuvabitch." Still tilting the rules of engagement, even in grief and heartache. well at least the bastard was consistent. "For what it's worth I meant what i said before. I respect the hell outta what you did. but you wanna talk sometime? I'll listen." He looked around still, trying to figure out if 'she' was there, or would remember him. Still he wasn't throwing away the few loyalties he had. "Time to see how many places there are to hide in here."