Date: June 6, 2010
Morgan wakes to a small little "birthday party" when Erin gives her cake and a present, then the two begin to plan for her new life.
"Cake and Cover Stories"
The warehouse-apartment is still dark, except for the kitchen light being on. Erin figured she'd let Morgan sleep for a little while while she snuck out to get something. She's trying, in her own way, to make this a little easier for the displaced were-porcupine. Try as she might, she can't imagine at all how this could be easy. If Erin were Morgan, she'd want to go home.
It's hard to imagine how she'd feel if she could never see her friends again, or her recently-reconciled family. It almost did happen to her, and she was devastated. But there was still hope that she would reconnect with everyone. For Morgan, there is none. She, until yesterday, wasn't even real.
After her errand, she sits at the kitchen counter on a stool, head resting on crossed arms as she stares at a small cake with a single candle in the centre of it. It's not lit yet, because Erin's waiting, and the longer she waits, the more she's positive that Morgan is going to think this is ridiculous. ERIN would think this was ridiculous. Hell, she does.
She'll just continue waiting.
It's amazing how tired a body that's been comatose and brain-dead can be. After several hours sleep, Morgan finally rolls out of bed. After washing up, she puts on the clothes that Peter picked out — she'll need more, but she has no money, though Peter and Erin both offered to give her some to help set her up — but set her up as … who? and what? Morgan Gale — she could be anything she wanted, in some ways, but Morgan isn't sure who that is.
She pads on bare feet into the kitchen, glancing at the petite brunette that looks like her mental image of herself, though now they couldn't even pass for sisters. Strange. "Morning," she murmurs, a little shyly. It's like talking to herself, only not.
Erin's head comes up of the counter, blue eyes meeting Morgan's. This character she's played for years now is standing right in front of her, a living, breathing human being. This is right out of the show. It would be a perfect plot for the show. And yet, it's real. For a moment, Erin doesn't reply.
Shaking her head, she says, "Good morning. Hey, I got this for you." She pushes the plate forward, picks up one of those barbeque grill lighters, and lights the candle. "I'm not singin', though. You don't want to hear me sing. It's awful. Trust me." With a smirk, she pulls open the drawer where she and Cody keep silverware, and pulls out a little wrapped gift, and sets it beside the cake.
Morgan tilts her head at the cake, a small smile curving her lips upward. When the present is placed in front of the cake, her dark green eyes glitter for a moment with startling tears. "Come on. I always thought I had a lovely voice," she says, opting for humor for a moment to push away the melodrama that seems to have less of a place in this world. "This is my first… present. In real life," she says, stepping closer and picking it up.
She closes her eyes for a moment, chewing her lower lip as she thinks of a wish, then blows out the single candle. The wish is simple: Please let me be happy. She's not sure this is the right thing to do. She thought she'd wake up and be full of ideas and plans and ways to make them happen, but… so far that hasn't happened.
"Wonder if I can sing better in this body. I'll have to find out in the shower," Morgan adds, as she begins to unwrap the present.
"Don't cry on me," Erin says gently, giving the gift a little push closer to Morgan. "You know, if it helps, just imagine that you had to move away from Llanview. You've got a normal life, no more fighting crime." Normal, hah! Around Erin, things seem to go weird all the time. "Your memories aren't any less real, okay? I mean, we'll have to go over a few things, like… No more punching Hallis? But other than that, you know…" Trailing off as Morgan blows out the candle, Erin leaves the stool so she can pull out a couple plates, turning her head as Morgan opens the present.
It's a gold necklace with a small square charm printed with an 'M.' Simple, but something Erin felt would help a little bit with her identity a little. As she puts a couple plates down, she says, "It occured to me. I really don't wear jewelry, except when I'm filming. So I know you do." She pauses. "You don't hate it, do you?"
Morgan's long fingers trace the M and her eyes glitter with that threat of tears once more, before she suddenly flings her long arms around Erin, hugging her tightly. "I don't hate it. I absolutely don't hate it," she murmurs into Erin's dark hair. "Thank you!"
The dramatic moment over, she steps back and reaches behind herself to clasp the necklace. "It's my first real … possession, I guess. I mean, if you don't count my possession of your body. Since that was temporary and not my fault." She flashes a bright toothy smile at Erin.
Erin grins, hugging Morgan back. It's all so dramatic, but maybe as she gets more used to how people talk around here, she'll grow out of it. "I'm glad you like it," she says. She won't tell Morgan that her eyes kind of fell on it pretty quickly, and it wasn't that hard of a decision at all. It's the thought that counts, however short-lived it might have been.
"Well, you were borrowing me," Erin says dryly. Technically, the necklace is the first thing morgan actually owns. "And you'll kind of get used to stuff like that happening. Y'know, I'm sure you can even use some of your skills here. I mean, you're a paranormal expert. You figure things out. And there's a lot more people than me in this world with an ability; you saw Peter. My roommate has one." Briefly, she wonders where Cody's been. This is what she gets for not watching the news; she has no idea the plane even crashed.
"Janet doesn't," she adds thoughtfully. She's going to have to talk to Janet before she introduces Morgan, as she wouldn't put it beyond her sister to blurt out something insensitive like, 'but you don't exist!'
"Have you thought about how old you are yet? Where you're from? Some sort of cover story?" There's no rush, but we'll have to, you know, kind of get that together. And one more thing," she says, leaning closer, smiling. "No more trying to seduce Taine. I don't think his ego can take another hit like that." It's kind of a warning, in a way.
Morgan's eyes widen at the mention of Taine, and she blushes at the memory of the mortifying moment. "A cover story… I don't know. I'll have to think of something. I mean, I don't think I want to explain this situation to everyone I meet. Who would want to … you know. Be friends with me… if they know I'm not real?" There's a twinge in her stomach as she says the words.
"The paranormal stuff… none of it's real, though. I mean, yeah, you have powers, but that's not the same as were-people and vampires, right? I don't know. I'll have to find a job doing something … normal. Mundane." She frowns at that. Does she know how to be normal? "Peter said something about modeling… am… am I that pretty? I mean… in Llanview, everyone's beautiful. Here," she drops her voice to a conspiratorial whisper, "I've seen some ugly people in this New York City of yours."
"You're real. What you'd have to worry about is people thinking you're crazy," she says. Erin pats a hand against Morgan's upper arm. "See? If you weren't real, I couldn't do this, right? You gotta stop thinkin' that way. You have to. I mean, yeah, it's really weird, but you're real."
There's a pause. "It's up to you who you tell. Taine and Janet should know, because they're worried about …" Me? "Us. And they should know that we're both okay. Anyone else is your call. Cody's my best friend. I'd like to be able to tell her what happened to me, 'cuz, honestly, I've never been so fucking scared." Lies! It's just that all the scary moments in her life are starting to blur together. "I mean, imagine being able to see and hear everything, but you can't move, or speak, or communicate anything. It's just…" Erin takes a breath. "…But that's over now."
With a smirk, Erin nods. "You're beautiful. You need to eat a bit. I don't think that body's eaten anything for weeks. Here." Cutting a slice off the cake, she puts it on a plate with a fork, and slides it over toward Morgan. "You could even act. You did a pretty good job pretending to be me pretening to be Morgan Starr."
At the 'ugly people' comment, Erin arches her eyebrows. "Well… Yeah, you'll meet all kinds around here. Just… You know, try not to stare."
"You can tell who you need to, if they promise to keep it a secret," Morgan says quietly, her eyes staring at the cake as it's cut, realizing she is actually rather hungry. "I mean, it's not fair to ask you to keep it a secret when it was so traumatic for you. I'm really sorry — I mean, I know I didn't do it, but still. And that goes for anything I did that causes you any problems now — like Hallis… I'm sorry," she says, cutting a bit of cake with her fork and bringing it to her mouth. "Oh, my God, that's good."
Her eyes close and she relishes the sweet flavor of the cake for a long (dramatic) pause, before smiling. Everything is made better by cake.
Erin rolls her eyes. "Stop apologising. I'll deal with it. Trust me. I've gotten myself out of plenty of shitty situations already. I'm sure I can manage." Cutting another piece of the cake for herself, she eats in silence with Morgan for awhile. It's so amazing because Erin doesn't eat cake all that often. "I don't know how Hallis is gonna work out. I don't think we should tell her, though. Dunno how well she can keep a secret. And she might just end up thinking that I'm crazy."
There's still a lot to consider. A lot to make work. Because this is a person who's had nothing, and she suddenly appears in the world in her late twenties… How can they explain her sudden appearance? Maybe she moved here from… Alaska or something. As she finishes another bite, Erin notes idly, "You could totally be Alaskan."
"Alaska?" Morgan echoes, blinking. "I don't know anything about Alaska. I … do I look Alaskan? I thought maybe more Californian or something. What if people ask me stuff and I don't know? I mean, all I know about Alaska is… um… they have moose there, right? And polar bears? Maybe. I'm not sure." She is starting to get nervous about this whole living in the world thing again. Maybe fading into oblivion would have been the smarter thing to do.
"Maybe I should pretend to have had amnesia… I mean, that's already happened to me once, right? But people probably don't want to know someone who has no memory of anything, either. I mean, I probably wouldn't want to. I'd be worried they were an axe murderer in their former lives." Because that's what happens on soap operas.
"D'you know anything about California?" Erin asks, still smiling. Anywhere that Morgan chooses to be from, she's going to have to learn about. "We can go to the library or something. Get some books. I mean, you're pale, so California's probably out unless you just stayed inside all day. And I think the sun's only up for like two hours in Alaska or something. I don't know. I've never been there, either." Maybe they should day-trip to Alaska.
Finishing her cake, Erin heads over to the sink to dump her plate in. She'll wash it later. "I guarantee you weren't an axe murderer. Those are always old creepy guys. And really, who murders with an axe anymore?" Chuckling, she says, "Well, I got up early. I'm gonna go get a couple more hours of sleep. Just don't worry so much, okay? And for the love of god, don't try to drive anywhere."