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Posted: Jan 30 2017, 09:58 PM
29 years old
Level SevenPsychic Shield, Telepathy, Mental Manipulation
31 posts Written By Mori
He’d told her to stay away from it. He’d told her that he didn’t want her to get hurt, but Max didn’t listen to him. She couldn’t. It wouldn’t have helped her if she’d listened to begin with: she was hurt and hurting long before she came back to New Haven. Besides, he couldn’t help her -- not when he needed her to hold him together. He couldn’t help her, couldn’t protect her, and he couldn’t stop her.
She stood at the beach and wriggled her toes in the warm sand. Max couldn’t remember when she’d stopped and chucked off her boots and peeled off her socks, only that she had, because she remembered that she could. New Haven’s Beach wasn’t like any beach in Oregon. The sand was whiter, the water warmer, and the coastline wasn’t dotted by crags of sharp rocks or windy caves. There was only the shoreline and the distant jut of an empty boardwalk.
Max walked slowly until she reached the water. She stopped, not even minding the gentle waves that splashed up against her rolled up jeans. Lifting her hand to shield her eyes from the setting sun, Max looked out at the stretch of the ocean and tried to imagine what it was like to be lost in something so wide and vast and deep.
She didn’t feel the water pull away from her feet, nor did she see the wave until it started to crest and gain its form. Max’s hand fell away from her face when she saw it, and her mouth dropped open as she saw it rise to seemingly cover the sun. Breathless with her own horror, she turned with the intent of running, but the cityscape had melted away, along with the boardwalk. The only thing beneath her feet was a small spit of sand, and everything else had turned to ocean waves.
Pain and hurt and slamming down on the sand like I was angry at it, he’d said. He told her not to go near it, but she didn’t listen. She should have listened, but she didn’t, and now… it was on all sides, and it was seconds away from bearing down on her. Years ago, Max knew she would have felt content -- standing still was easier than jumping and falling, after all -- but now… terror clawed at her throat as she swiveled to look for even the tiniest method of escape.
She tried, but she couldn’t move. Max’s eyes jolted downwards and she saw that her feet had turned to sand. Her skin was dissolving and disintegrating right before her very eyes, so quickly -- too quickly -- that there was nothing she could do but watch as the effect spread up her body, to her legs, to her torso, to her hands.
Her rings fell into the sand with a thud. They were tangible, and they were a record of her, but Max knew that they would be swept away. She would dissolve and she would become the sea.
And it hurt. It hurt because her skin was dissolving. It hurt because everything flesh and blood and bone was rapidly decaying into nothing. It hurt because this had been precisely the thing she wanted to avoid -- the thing she vowed to stop.
She was so far gone that she didn’t even scream as the water slammed against the shore. It hurt -- and oh, it hurt, but it was only for just a second, and then…
Max woke with a start and lifted her head abruptly, only missing hitting herself on her desk lamp by a few spare inches. Her eyes darted frantically around the room as she tried to piece together a way to escape from something that wasn’t coming. Her breathing was quick and shallow, but it slowed and deepened as the reality of where she was set in.
This was… this was somewhere familiar -- somewhere relatively safe. Max recognized the small room (more a closet than anything) as her office. Her bag sat in the corner of the room, precisely where she’d dumped it after her recent session with… some myth-named act or another.There was no beach here, no waves. Her body was complete and whole. Her fingers still carried rings, and her face was…
Warm. Max lifted her fingers to her nose and grimaced when they came back red. She was used to nosebleeds as an after effect of her powers, but she had been going too deep and doing too much with them. They were becoming more frequent, and more intense. There weren’t any tissues on Max’s desk (someone had borrowed them, she remembered) but she could see that her paperwork for her sessions was completely ruined, along with the notes she wrote to Sam in between her sessions, save for one innocent question that she could barely remember writing.
What do you think my project name would be if they made me a Proprietary Act?
In some ways she was. Max realized this as she lifted herself to her feet and urgently crossed the small room towards the door. Her confines were larger than an Act, and she had more freedom because she was obedient and useful and believed in the Agency as a force for good, but at some point...
Max pushed the thought away as she exited the room and turned towards the direction of the bathroom, only to slam straight into something solid. Her legs went out underneath her and she crashed down to the ground.
Her first impulse was to shrink backwards and away from the wave, but when she looked… it wasn’t a wall of water greeting her. It was just… shoes… pants… a person.
“Sorry,” she offered as she lifted one hand to cover her nose. “I wasn’t looking -- focused on other things. It won’t happen again.”