Healing Waters

August 29, 2015:

Brin checks in on Wanda and finds her meditating… and an interesting look into the womans mind

X-Red HQ - New York


NPCs: None.



Mood Music: None.

Fade In…

After returning to X-Red HQ after the kefuffle in M-Town, Brins gone to check her emails and such. That done, she's now looking for Wanda and heads to the other womans room. Tapping on the doorframe, she sticks her round the open door "Wanda, are you there?"

Wanda has taken to meditating thanks to Dr Strange but it's not as straightforward as it is for most people…as Brinley soon finds out. The door to the room swings open to reveal the bedroom…now located in a forest glade. The trees stretch out for what seems forever, certainly longer than the twenty or so feet her room usually occupies. There is moisture in the air like it has been raining…and is that a breeze? "I'm here, Brinley" replies Wanda as she emerges from behind a tree. And her body is also in a lotus position on the bed. "Come in, Brinley. I'm just relaxing. Trying to make my head all clear, you know?" She taps on the side of her head and giggles. "Such a mess. Would you like to go for a walk?" The witch is dressed in a peasant blouse and skirt - all very Transian Romani. "There is a lovely river a few hundred yards that way." She points to the east.

Brins still dressed in her tailored trousers and black collared t-shirt with a stylized X on her right breast.

Stopping as she takes in the 'room'… she shakes her head, looks out the door back to X-Red HQ and then back into the forest… with Wanda, nothing is really simple. The breeze ruffles her hair a little and she raises her uninjured arm to brush a lock back and push it behind her ear, turning to look at Wanda as she speaks."Relaxing…" the brunette breaths, slight amusement colouring her tone.

"We can walk, slowly." Brin agrees, her leg is still quite sore.

"You never told me how you hurt yourself" Wanda frowns as she notes the trepidation about walking. "Was it Jean? Or Darque?" It's usually one of them and they are related. "Let me help" And with that a saddled horse appears and walks slowly over to the wounded woman. She waits patiently while Brinley mounts the horse…in Wanda's bedroom. "Do you like the countryside, Brin?"

More blinking from the brunette mutant as the horse appears… in Wanda's bedroom … but she mounts it, taking her time and favouring her right leg and arm. "Yes, I do, Wanda. I grew up, really, at the Institute, there's lovely countryside around there." she thinks about that for a moment "but not, I think, like where you grew up."

Settling, as comfortably as she can on the back of the horse, she smiles down at Wanda. Brin had been passed out when they returned her to X-Red and she's a little vague on who actually knows what happened. "Purifiers… " she answers "I was helping Nightcrawler try to liberate Jean. I lead them away by flying… they shot, and I didn't zag when I should have." More appropriately, there'd been a lot of bullets. "Where to?"

"You can fly? That's awesome" Wanda smiles. She may have seen Brinley do it but she is horribly forgetful some days. Most days. "I think I can fly sometimes but I can't think about it" she explains in her own way. "We're going to the river" she smiles, taking the horse's bridle and heading eastwoods through the trees. The animal seems quite capable of avoiding all it needs to.

"This is like Transia" Wanda notes, taking a deep breath of the clean air. "Like how I remember it at least. Nightcrawler? Oh, is Bobby okay? Has he seen the people he needs to?" There is a slight darkening of the skies as clouds start to form overhead.

"Yes, I can. One of mutant abilities let me create wings." Brin can't remember if Wanda's seen her fly. "And I'm sure you can fly, too." Grateful that Wanda is leading the horse, Brin glances around and then up at the skies as Wanda speaks. "Bobby has seen someone, yes." Not a lie, Brins just not sure who "And he will get the help that he needs. Don't worry Wanda, between you and I, we will make sure he is as safe as can be."

"Tell me about Transia… if this is how you remember it, it's very beautiful."

With Brinley's words the skies clear again, the sun streaming through the trees and casting dappled shadows over the pair. "I am sure that Bobby will be fine" she smiles, "He has too many people who care for him. Transia?" Wanda glances around and nods. "It is very beautiful. The country. The people. The government…not so much. It is a tiny land, clustered around a big mountain. And on top of that mountain is the President." The clouds start to return. "The government wanted to cut me up…and Pietro. I haven't seen my brother for a while." There is a flash of lightning on the horizon.

"Well, you're in America now and part of X-Red. We won't let anyone hurt you." Brin means that. If the Transian government try for Wanda, the team will tie them up with so much red tape they won't know which way is up. Her voice quiets "I'm sorry you haven't seen your brother." She winces at the flash of lightning "You did very well today, Wanda. It's nice to have you on the team and as a friend."

"Today was…strange" Wanda muses, though obviously the river they have now arrived at is perfectly normal in a bedroom. "I try my best, Brinley, but I am not sure if I am doing right. I know you say I am and I respect that opinion…and you…but there is still this hollowness inside. Even a loneliness. Especially since Night Eyes ran away." There is gypsy caravan on the riverbank a couple of hundred yards upstream. "That is where I used to live" she smiles, "Before they came for us." She stares at the vehicle for a long moment before laughing softly. "Wanda Maximoff…American. My brother always wanted to be American. I think he has had problems in love too. The Maximoffs are not the best at this I think."

Brin glances back over her shoulder, looking for the door to the bedroom… it might say something about her state of mind that it seems perfectly acceptable that Wanda's bedroom is really forest with a river running through and now a Gypsy caravan in it.

"Today was beyond strange, Wanda. But then, that's Vorpal for you." She doesn't know anywhere enough about Wanda's magic to understand that it … worked with… Vorpals "Not everything we do is like they." Thankfully. Brins quiet for a long while as she thinks on Wanda's words, gazing at the river and the caravan "It gets better, Wanda. The loneliness. Give the team a chance, they won't replace your family, but they'll become family too." Pushing her hair back from her face again, she continues "They have for me. And for now, it's what I have."

Brin's lonely too, she might understand what Wanda is feeling. "When it's the right person, Wanda, you don't have to be the best at love… heck, you don't even have to be good at it because… it will be just right for the two of you."

"I love you guys" Wanda nods, "Some of you more than I should but, the last family I had, I destroyed them. I killed my parents. My brother has disappeared and can barely remember me. Do you really want me in your family, Brin?" A wry smile for her friend before she offers her hand. "Come and splash around in the river, it will help your wounds."

"I don't think there will ever be a right person now" Wanda replies softly. "Did I ever tell you about Vision? He was a robot sent to kill me…but he was more than a robot. And he didn't want to kill me. And when I was around him…it was so peaceful. The voices stopped. I could think. I think I was even normal. He was going to stay at my apartment with Lunair…but he never made it there and I haven't seen him since. Do you know why he wanted to kill me? Because one day I will have evil children." She laughs at the idea. "I do not think I will ever have children."

Smiling at Wanda's admission, Brin takes the offered hand a gingerly lowers herself to the ground. "Splash in the river, huh?" She looks at her uniform and back to Wanda. "I don't really want to get my uniform wet… " it's obvious though, the idea of the water appeals to her. Still, she'll remove her shoes and roll the legs of her trousers up so she can at least paddle on the edge… maybe she'll be bold soon too.

"Nothing is written in stone, Wanda." Brin puts her shoes to the side and straightens "You didn't say anything about Vision, though … I believe" she shrugs a little and moves to get her feet wet "that the possibilities are infinite and what is available to us is affected by our choices. I'll guess that Vision didn't see you joining X-Red and doing what you're doing now."

She chuckles a little "It's also possible that your decision to join X-Red was influenced by you meeting Vision." Not wanting to cause too much of a headache or confusion, she looks over to Wanda "There's a possibility I might have children that turn out to be evil, as well… " She's not going to be drawn on whether she will or won't have children though.

"You might have evil children" agrees Wanda with a nod, "But has anyone been sent to kill you because of it? I do wonder what happened to him though." A roll of her eyes at the hesitant paddling. "This river is known for its healing qualities, Brin, but tell me…do you have a sore toe or a sore leg? If it's a leg…you might want to get it all wet." A pause. "Don't make me push you in." She finds a tree to lean against and watch over her friend. "No, nothing is written in stone. But sometimes the stone falls on you regardless."

Brin looks over to Wanda and grins just a little "Not yet, but you never know what's in store." It's not hesistant paddling, but she takes Wanda point… and sighs, moving back up the bank and shimmying out of her trousers and top, stripping down to her underwear (which is probably more modest than most beachwear!). Folding her clothes and putting them on her shoes, Brin enters the water properly. There is a level of trust in the act - she trusts Wanda to look out for her…

"Is that better?" She asks the other woman as wades out to where the water reaches her waist. It's cool, not cold, but cool enough to make her shiver.

"You tell me, is that better?" Wanda asks in return. The river is an illusion of course, constructed from the 'reality' of the witch's mind. But that also means if she believes it heals then her magic will make it so. "Though I think your great-grandmother called. She wanted her underwear back." Wanda looks up at the grey skies that have returned overhead and then turns her attention on the caravan. Her eyes narrow as she thinks she sees movement. "I will be right back, Brin" she calls out before heading for the vehicle.

Colouring at Wanda's teasing, Brin scoffs a little "It's not that bad." It's just functional… The pain in her thigh has certainly eased, but not completely gone and she nods back to Wanda "The pain is easing." of course Brin doesn't know that Wanda actually remakes reality and is more than willing to participate in the illusion that the woman is creating.

The greying skies and Wanda's sudden departure has Brin frowning… she didn't want to be left here alone. "Wanda! Where are…."

"I'll only be a minute" Wanda calls back as a fog starts to rise from the river. It grows fast and thick, as if being pumped from a smoke machine. Soon Wanda is gone from sight. The caravan just a dark shape in the whiteness that is now enveloping Brinley. And it is also suddenly cold…very cold.

Of course… Brin shivers a little and glances around… she doesn't call her armour or wings just yet. Moving towards the shore, Brin is careful… placing her feet purposefully and trying to see what's happening in the around her.

She hasn't gone more than two steps when she feels the water stir… what's that moving…

The ground is softer underfoot now. The river gurgles and the occasional splash can be heard that suggests something is active out there. Perhaps even more than one. Then a scream pierces the cold fog, emanating from the dark shape of the caravan. A woman's scream…but it didn't sound like Wanda.

"Wanda!" Brins voice pierces the fog, perhaps the loudest anyone has heard her in a long while. She panics, freezing and looking scared - this reminds her so much of The Incident. Thanks to Jeans mindblast, the telepathic blocks that were stopping those memories overwhelming her are now gone and the situation throws her right back to that day.

The womans scream has Brin looking more intently into the fog, calling someones name … a fellow Paragon, now gone from this world. Falling silent, Brin forgets she is in the water, imagines the splashes are The Purifiers that ambushed them that day. Without really thinking, she manifests her bow and arrow and aims … into the fog at one of those splashes… before letting loose. For the moment at least, Brins lost to the memory of what happened that day.

The arrow disappears into the gloom without a sound. "Why…" is whispered on the wind by a voice from Brinley's past. "Why did you leave us?" There is a shape in the fog, staggering towards the frightened woman. More shapes in the fog upon the water. Approaching her with a steady pace. "You abandoned us…"

They hadn't abandoned them… Brin and the other survivors had waited for retrieval taking the bodies of their fallen comrades with them. Brin had cradled him in her arms as he died, trying to ease him, even as The Purifiers hunted for the survivors.

"We… we didn't… I … I didn't. We stayed." The bow flickers in her hands as her concentration falters - something that hasn't happened in a long time to the brunette mutant "I'm sorry." It's the guilt of a survivor, of one who couldn't save another and yet has to go on living.

"Stayed? If you stayed, then why aren't you here with us?" asks the voices, twisting reality to suit their purpose…whoever they may be. "You didn't do all you could and you know it" hisses another voice. "You led us into that trap. You knew about the ambush." The shapes loom closer, seeming to grow in size as the near. "You know what you need to do, Brinley." All three voices then say as one, "Join us."

She hadn't led them to the trap or known about the ambush. She'd been extensively injured and had only gotten out by sheer dumb luck. Not that that mattered - survivors guilt remained.

The bow flickers out of existence as the voices speak and Brin is frozen in place. Does she really know what to do? In the back on her head she can hear Nicks voice, telling her that she needs to stop just existing and live… she can hear Bobby and Mike and Doug and Scott, speaking to her, asking for assistance, giving her help. She can hear Wanda asking for reassurance… She has a family… people who need her here … and yet it would be so easy to just give in and join them.

"I…I can't… join you." Brin doesn't move letting the shapes loom closer, finally facing the nightmares from so long ago "I loved you all and I miss you. But I can't join you."

The truth has never been important to guilt. It will try to seep into Brinley's mind and soul. Corrupt it. Lie to it. Make her believe the worst about herself…but she won't believe them. The shadows contract now, diminishing in reaction to Brinley's determination. Even the fog is starting to fade away.

Wanda is standing in front of Brinley now, smiling warmly as she puts a consoling hand on her shoulder. "I told you that it was a healing river" she whispers. "But I think I have had enough of relaxing. Time to go home."

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