Log:Pushing Buttons

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Pushing Buttons
Characters  •   The Caregiver  •  The Confidant  •
Location  •  Dispensary
Date  •  2018-12-17
Summary  •  The dispensary buttons aren't the only buttons being pushed for Caregiver, courtesy of Confidant. But she gets some whiskey and a hug in the end, at least.

You know when you have too many buttons to push and you kind of want to push all of them? It looks like that's what the woman who looks like Eilis and so much more has done, aimlessly, mindlessly, because every single dispenser on the wall has been touched and is doing something. Of course, she doesn't quite know what's churning out and working, she just knows she touched things and they're all buzzing and working and about to explode, surely.

As she backs over into a wall and waits for the inevitable, she clutches at her bare stomach with a bunch of oh-shit face and some stunned deer in headlights expression on her fair features. And she doesn't look like Prosperity Eilis precisely-- she does, but she's dark headed again, less fragile, more vivacious even standing frozen still, still expressive as all get out in silence. And she's ridiculously attractive, somehow making panties and lace camisole half-top look less casual, more runway version because... she found designer heels in her closet. And she apparently wanted to wear them. Where the clothes part of that ensemble got to, who knows. She didn't get that far.

The first dispenser pops out a bottle. Nothing explodes. Yet.


Enter a familiar redhead. Well. Jody DeWitt sure has grown. Tall, as before, but he's less lean dope fiend and more...broad? Where Jody was tan and freckled from the Nevada sun this guy is pale. As he casually steps up beside the former Eilis, the most noteworthy thing of all is his perfect gait. Two beats, not three with bare feet. He's fully dressed in low slung jeans and a gray hoodie. He glances at Eilis once and any color he has drains. He faces forward, stiffly. "Fuck." He mutters. "I knew this was going to happen. It was inevitable, man." He takes a deep breath and turns to Eilis. "What door did you come from?" His western drawl is replaced with some more blandly American, not unlike a newscaster.


Another dispenser pops out a big family sized dish of spaghetti. Then a hamburger drops on top of the noodles a few seconds later when it's not taken out of the way. Then a taco on top of that. Splat after splat, the dispenser where things are coming out to eat instead of drink, things are starting to stack up. Exactly how many times did she hit buttons? The bottle is at least by itself and salvageable. It's a bottle of cola.

What was once Jody DeWitt scares the holy shit out of her once he speaks. The woman's concern snaps from the dispenser-letting where fear is turning into mild fascination and she looks like she's about to step forward and push -more- buttons. But instead, she hisses and backs up a little more with slide along the wall, not seeming to understand the question. Or does she? She probably did make note of exactly which door to go back into at some point, as much as things like logic are under the bridge at the moment. Probably why she didn't bother dressing. What exactly -do- you put on to walk among ghosts and demons? Does it matter? That's the way she's looking at the man now, as if he's a ghost, eyes widening. Then with a sudden wary squint and reaching prod of hand, she pushes on him like she's trying to make sure he's solid. He is of course. As she leans, a silver cross on a leather cord that doesn't match the wine red satin and lace and cotton of her underwear dangles and falls back to rest for her to clutch after.


The Confidant chuckles when she pushes him. "I-I know I'm pale but I am alive. If I miss anything about Prosperity, it was being able to tan. Let me fix the dispenser real quick, okay?" This Facility old timer knows just what to do to make the food stop falling. He still laughs softly and shakes his head. Nervous but glad to be occupied for a few moments. "You really only need to--well, you're new and which means you came from the 1800s, well, 1902 to be exact. No point of reference for touchscreens. That is so fucked up. Christ, I hope the next one is back to modern times. There." And he just leaves the piled food where it is before coming back to The Caregiver. "First of all..." He pauses and sighs. "Don't call me, Jody. Okay? I prefer Chance. Are you okay with being called Eilis?"


The woman's bottom lip works with trapping between her teeth as the man steps forward to stop more mess from accumulating, watching what he does with keen observance. She's enough with wits to observe and save it for emulating later when she no doubt makes more messes. In fact, she's a bit like a sponge, that toddler way of drinking things in that other people do to emulate. There's a nod given to the familiar name and question after taking in the preferred introduction from Jody... not Jody. Chance.

After holding her breath, she steps forward a bit coltishly in the tall heels to nab the single bottle, eyeing the screw cap with bothered eyes. She tries initially to just yank it, like uncorking from a whiskey bottle, then frowns with consternation before handing it over to him to open for her so she can watch him do that too. Maybe he's not a ghost. Maybe he's a demon with a second name. But she's thirsty. She's probably been hiding a while. Finally she breaks her silence to murmur, like she's afraid of what this man will do with the answer. It's almost like she feels in trouble for existing, "... the one with the woman. And the human heart."


He holds out the bottle and points to the top. "Twist." Which he about to demonstrate before looking at the bottle. It's fizzy. So he waits a moment. "It'll squirt all over. Uh...yeah, that's a new door. New door. New face." He pauses and exhales. "I realized just now that I'm like...talking in another language. So. Fuck. Where to even begin?" He look at the bottle and gets the top a careful twist. A little bit leaks, so he wipes the bottle on his hoodie. "You aren't dead. This isn't Hell or Purgatory. It's just a place. A place where we end up after." He hold the dry bottle out to her. "What happened in Prosperity? Wasn't real. Like, scan your memory; this trick is the...easiest to demonstrate. Think about when we were kids. Try and pinpoint anything really, really specific. Can you? I can't remember my mother's name. But, you can remember sitting at the fountain in the summer, right?"


Reaching to take the bottle back from the familiar man going by Chance now, Eilis turns the cap the rest of the way to pull the top and turns it up for a quick drink that makes her cough suddenly and widen her eyes. She wasn't expecting the fizz of a cola, precisely, but she takes another drink of the sweet fizziness with more sipping care and a very slow draw of her brows while listening. Something he says in all that, though, it looks like it rips right through her more than being Dead or a piece of Hell could ever do her. Wasn't real. Abruptly she slings the bottle to the side to make another mess with distress. Apparently she has the impulse control of a toddler right now, too. It doesn't really escalate, though, she just doesn't seem able to hold the bottle anymore and that's how it happens to go. Then she eyes the man with wariness and reaches up to grip the cross around her neck stubbornly, "... doesn't matter what I remember. I felt... so much. That's not... that's not..."

She doesn't ask any more questions. She cuts her profile to him, down and aside, "... they were your nice clothes. From the city. I put extra stitches in the buttonholes too, where they didn't need mending. Lasts longer."


"Yeah. I noticed too. I-I wasn't one to change my clothes a lot so...I was grateful." He doesn't say anything about her reaction and doesn't care about more mess. He does care about her. He moves to look her in the eyes, even bending a little. "I gave you the facts but what you /feel/ is real and is valid, okay? See...this is my third time in one of those horror shows so..." He trails off and stands up straight. He paces away, wringing his hands. "I only asked you to mend because...I didn't really know how to talk to a woman I was attracted to. A small favor would force us together again was my thought." He chuckles. "We ended up where we were meant to be though." He's facing her again. "So before Prosperity, I had two other...Encounters. That's what I call them. Both were complete shit shows with gruesome death and mayhem and loss. So, if I lose you, remember that I've been here before." He pauses a beat. "If you hang around outside your room, you'll find familiar faces like mine. You should find Pierce. Pierce has done this a few times too. See...we don't recall each other inside the Encounters. Outside, back here, we do. And I don't forget anyone. Ever." He deadpans the last word and closes his eyes a moment.


Rising her gaze as the man steps near to look her in the eyes with that bit about validation, it does seem to steady her some, so do his following words with pacing. His words about the mending and bringing them together even brings a tick of surprised twitching smile to her lips. But she continues to clutch at the cross to the point of near bleeding her flesh with the edges, especially when he gets to the bit about Pierce being... there. And probably not Pierce. Jody isn't Jody, afterall. Why would she get Pierce back? They lost each other. But they won. Them. Now there was no more them. She looks like she's about to faint there for a moment. But then she ticks her head with thought, his other words starting to sink in, "... Cillian? My brothers? They aren't... my family, and Pierce... isn't my husband."

"But Joe-Joe if--" she stops herself, she wanders after his pace in her own half-pace, she stops as he stops, "Chance." She makes the amendment out of respect despite her wary state, she looks aside at the soda spreading in a spilled mess over the floor. Then she's suddenly desperate. It's not that he's not making sense, entirely, it's just that she's not letting go either. She doesn't know how. Her free hand clutches for his hoodie to hold, showing him the cross with open of her palm, "I had his children. I died so they could live. It's how we won. If it was a dream, how do I have this? It's his. The last sunset..."


The Confidant takes a deep breath. He's words are even, patient and kind. "Oh, the McTavishes. Cillian? We've been around a few times. He's probably here. His door has a man with coins on it. I saw Arthur this morning. I haven't seen Patrick, Rory, Nolan or Glenn yet. But other than Arthur...we're all old timers. Been through this at least once before." He lists off the names easier than Jody would have ever. N-Now, how do I--Okay, so you remember them as family and they will remember you. I don't give a fuck what anyone says. What happened may or may not have been real but our feelings are. If they loved you then? They still do now. Pierce too. But...this Encounter was different. We were all family and friends and lovers. It wasn't like that before. A lot of us are wrestling with feelings right now. Love and mourning. Loss." He pauses and laughs. "Well, not me. It was awful for me there so...I was kinda glad to wake up here again. I died alone in Baton Rouge. Shot myself with the gun that killed my Pa."

He looks at her cross then. "Oh, we all bring something back. My cane was with me. The black one I liked so much. Some people end up with weapons but they don't hurt. Blunt blades and fake guns." He pauses a moment. "I really want to press upon you to follow your heart while you are here. S-Since we don't recall each other within Encounters--and there will be another one--you want to make the most of the time you have here. Because...you may hate one another in the next. Or you could end up sleeping with your brother. See how this can go?"


"Maybe. But if he has so many lifetimes, there's no more promises I can hold him to in this one. Nor any others." The woman that was Eilis McTavish was often a little too smart for her own good and expressive as hell. Those parts have persisted into this place. It's not lost on her, any of this, as much as she'd like it to be, it's written all over her. Her hand eases up on both the cross and the red-haired man's shirt front before she breathes out a quiet sigh to herself. She watches her hand smooth out the wrinkles left by her clutching, fingers at drift one way, then the other before her palm flats on his midsection, then creeps up to feel above where his heartbeat throbs. She thinks visibly.

"... will you promise me you're not a demon?" Her next question comes out kind of lame and vulnerable, considering a demon would probably lie, for one, and for two, she's standing there in her underwear and dressup heels.


"I'm not a demon." The Confidant says, blushing pink. "I promise. I'm just a guy." He places his hand over hers. "Heartbeat. Demons don't have hearts. And mine is too big." He says. "Look, you have a point. I've lived three lifetimes thus far and yeah, things happen during them that can influence this place but that is all the more reason to go out there and seize what was yours. You lock it down. Because when we return, which we do, we still remember all that happened before. If you love something and its meant to be, it'll return. If you want Pierce or...whatever he wants to be called, find him. You have time. I don't know how much, exactly but you have it. Take advantage."


"True. I just... I... I'm not as brave as Eilis. I'm scared." There's something in that logic of the heart that this particular woman, Eilis or not, she can't argue with. She feels his heart. And she remembers it large, if battered in the end. Her fingers curl in place under his hand, save for the index finger laid out flat to tap with the rhythmic beat and lifepulse. She takes a moment to breathe, touch, then she steps into a slow smash of hug while turning her face against his chest to look at the dispenser where the bottle came out, her less attired form that's skin and pieces of lace soaking up the comfort of his warm hoodie and now entirely solid frame, "... can you make the magic machine spit some whiskey?"


Oh, hugging! The Confidant needed a hug and he's happy to give. He even pecks the top of her head. "You are braver than you know. You'll realize it. You know, I've always been fucked up in the Encounters. I was deaf in the first, for example. And you see me now. My leg's fine. It's just me with this pattern, by the way. But...it always calls for me to be...I don't know. Stronger? I-I don't know. Point is, you will amaze yourself. Give it time." He gives her head one last nuzzle before pulling away. "Whiskey? Yes, ma'am. It'll spit out anything you want. No drugs though. Besides booze and tobacco. Which I do not partake in. Which is a...me thing. It doesn't cross over. That is how I know I am human." He says with a smile. "C'mon, I'll walk you through it."