2007-05-13: The Bridge From Girl To Woman


Elena_icon.gif Jane_icon.gif

Summary: Conversation on abilities, incidents, forgiveness, coping and adulthood.

Date It Happened: May 13, 2007

The Bridge From Girl To Woman

A restaurant somewhere in Manhattan, NYC

The appointed time approaches, and Jane arrives for the meeting she hopes to have, needs to have, with La Latina. Her heart is heavy with guilt, shame, and some concern for Elle after the earlier situation at her apartment. So much she isn't sure of here. Elena apologized before she bolted, she isn't sure at all why, and feels the one who failed is herself. Standing in the doorway, unable to act.

Dressed as normal, that is in guitar player garb, Jane's chosen to meet at some mid-range place in terms of cuisine and prices.

She would hear footsteps approaching, and quickly, behind Jane, Elena running up to her and stopping to pant a little bit, resting her hands on both knees. "Am….I ….late?" she wheezes. She's somewhat out of breath, even if her Stamina really isn't that bad. She's dressed in her usual, casual garb today. She's wearing a jacket over a tank top, a pair of dark blue jeans that clung on the hips, and she's got on a beaded belt that ties to the side. Boots instead of sneakers grace her feet, she didn't know what sort of place Jane wanted to pick for lunch, so she decided not to take any chances.

She looks up, cheeks flushed from the exercise, and her long hair spooled artfully behind her head and secured by a pair of chopsticks. She's even got a bit of makeup on, as well as gloss touching her lips. She looks, for the most part, the same ol' exuberant Elena. She smiles at Jane. "Sorry I kept you waiting…er…have you been waiting here long?"

"No," she replies with a quiet smile as she turns to spot the source of rushing footsteps and slightly winded Latina. "It's good, great, to see you. Thanks for coming." Jane's features are a mix of things. Relief her friend is alive to have this meeting, shame for not being able to do anything at the time, resolve to not be in such a spot again, and despite the situation concern for the electric one. Proactive Woman is settling in, a decision has been made.

"Why wouldn't I come?" is the rhetorical question to that, Elena looking at Jane curiously. She falls a step next to her friend and looks up at the menu pasted outside of the restaurant as they wait to be seated. "What are we having? Have you been here before?" she asks. "What's good?" As cheerful as she looks, it looks like she's at the very least not bringing up the incident with Elle. That can wait, she supposes, whenever Jane says something.

"The burgers are great here," Jane replies with a spreading grin. "The chef has his own secret recipe, something he does with spices I can't quite identify, but… ooooh."

The restaurant, according to those menus, has a fairly wide range. Steaks, burgers, sausages, soups, other sandwiches. A server, barely older than Elena and short with red hair, approaches. "Hey," she begins, "I'm Michelle. Do you know what you'd like to drink?"

Jane defers to her companion, waiting to place her request for Pepsi and one of those burgers she recommended, to be made with ketchup, mayonnaise, and mushrooms only with french fries.

"I'll have a diet pepsi, please? Thanks a lot," Elena tells Michelle, and she grins at Jane. "Excellent burgers, huh? Sounds like my kind of place." Despite spending half her spare time dancing, and half on research, the young woman doesn't seem to worry about carbs very much. She picks up a menu and looks at it, poring through the selections. "Wow, they really got a lot here…" She looks up to grin at Jane. "What are you getting?" she asks, whenever the waitress is off to get their drink orders and waiting for them to pick and choose one of the many selections on the list provided for them.

"Burger, fries, and cola," Jane answers as she makes her way in and settles into a seat at some corner where there aren't people around. Her eyes track the server for a moment, and her head shakes. "There's too many of me in the world, I think." A quiet chuckle escapes. "They do. I like the variety, and the food." A long pause comes, her eyes lower, and the words are simple. "I… don't really know where to begin, Emma."

"That's easy. Figure out what the first word is in your mind and go from there. That's how I do it, when it comes to something difficult." Elena looks up to smile faintly at Jane, but now that they're sitting, there's something in her eyes that seems somewhat missing. Still, she looks more cheerful than she should be given the circumstances. After a pause, she sighs. "Look, Jane….we worked it out. I mean, it's not okay that Elle decided to kidnap me and zap me. I told her that much. But she dropped by yesterday and she seemed genuinely sorry so….I told her….it's okay. Not the…you know. Zapping me part. But I told her that it was okay for her to be angry with me for not coming clean, or making things simpler. It was my fault, Jane. I was paranoid. I shouldn't have asked Peter to keep something from his own girlfriend."

"I'm glad you're alive, and so sorry I couldn't, didn't, do anything but stand in the door and watch. Helpless. For the second time." Amid her guilt, there's also that measure of discontent with herself, and the stirrings of resolve to do something about it. "You worked it out with her?" Jane sounds surprised by that, Elle hadn't said anything but that she had something to do after she put up the wall.

"Jane, if you did something, she would've done worse to you," Elena says simply. "My…abilities lend me to have the propensity not to feel pain for however long I can hold onto my will to do so. You don't have the same kind of ability, nothing would've saved you from her lightning should she have decided to hit you with it. Not to mention the fact that you were probably thinking about my safety too, if you did something she didn't like, she could've killed me easily. You did what anyone would've done in your situation….you waited for the right opportunity to present itself. It's just that I wasn't the passive prisoner she expected me to be." At the last, she nods. "She visited me. She ….looked like she was having a bad day, yesterday. I thought I'd be angry. Part of me wanted to…pretend I wasn't home. But she looked so…" She pauses, glancing out the window. "Alone. And sad. I just….I couldn't."

"I couldn't be angry either, when we talked, hours later, even though at the time I was having visions of you dead and me retaliating. She'd have to sleep sometime if nothing else." Jane replies. "So we talked about actions and how it takes time to recover from mistakes. She wanted me to pass on her apology and ask what she could do. I said I would, but she'd need to be prepared for it to be shot down." A pause is taken, the spoken words somber. "I wanted her to understand actions have consequences, and sometimes things just can't be fixed. If things like this continue to happen…" And her jaw sets. "You're right, I couldn't act. I need to become able to act, though. I need to work, experiment, practice, and develop a knockout scream."

"I can help you with that." Elena even knows where to start. Almost instantly. After everything she's been reading - books on sound, dark matter, the physics of time, biochemistry, making a mind to more easily be susceptible to control or suggestion, she was starting to get accustomed to the work. All she honestly needs to do in Jane's case is to stop by the library and pull a couple of books. She falls silent when the waitress comes by to put their drinks on the table. Elena places her order, and once Jane's is taken and when she leaves, she continues again. "I think she got the point when I knocked her out," she says. "It's not exactly the gentlest method I have in my disposal. She hit me hard enough to knock me out, I hit her hard enough to knock her out and made her feel it besides. We're even, as far as I'm concerned. I could've been angry. I could've shut the door to her face and screamed at her never to come back again. But I know she's….not -like- us Jane. I've been told. She's not acclimated socially. If someone rewards negative behavior with more negative behavior at the state she was in….she would never learn basic decency. She wouldn't be able to see that the world's got more to offer than people trying to hurt one another in one way or another. I'm not saying what she did was excusable. At the same time…it's not about that anymore in a way."

"Thank you," Jane replies simply, addressing the issue of improvement first. "I think it's mostly about finding a safe place to practice, and once there start making ultrasound and going up the scale of frequencies until we find out what my upper limit is, and how long it can be sustained for effect. At what point do the cords fail, and suchlike." Yes, she's clearly been thinking of the mechanics to this herself. "It might also require some type of equipment to measure frequencies. On a musical scale, that doesn't exist, we could be talking about C50. Or higher." Then she pauses before returning to Elle. "I'm walking on a tightrope over a minefield with her, and I don't really have a map, yet, although I'm starting to develop one. When we talked, I made the point that she keeps getting into trouble, her methods aren't working, and I'll help her find better ones. I said when she feels about to snap, to come talk with me, sometimes just getting it out slows things down. I think she gets it. I hope she gets it. Either way, I won't abandon her, any more than I'll tolerate people around me being harmed. Simple honesty. If I think she's wrong, I'll say so."

"That's good. I'm glad you're not abandoning her," Elena says. "That's the last thing she needs. Not after….she's lost….everything. I'm certain out of all of us, you're the one who knows what that's like most of all. I think in all honesty you're the best choice, if your aim is to guide her actions from here on in." She takes a sip of her diet Pepsi. "I was thinking more of how high a frequency a human brain can withstand processing before it hurts so much that it shuts down to save the body from experiencing further trauma. In a way, it's similar to my own knockout punch - it's just that the methodology is going to be different obviously. But we'll work on it, Jane. See what we can come up with. You're the one who's more knowledgeable about sound, after all."

"It's about sound and science, actually. I get the mechanics, that just because most brains don't recognize sound over a certain pitch, that doesn't mean the eardrum isn't vibrating or that the brain doesn't receive data. To figure out what the overload frequency and duration is without having any subjects to test, that's your field. Raw science, yes?" Jane grins, and drinks a bit from her cola. The non-diet Pepsi. "It's got a lot of potential. Cleaning surfaces, penetrating the body to take images of children in the womb… Lots of practical applications, and I've barely scratched the surface."

"Exactly," Elena says simply. "And raw science is my forte, yes. Or at least it's becoming it." She falls quiet when food is brought over to them, waiting for the waitress to serve them before heading out again to leave them to their chat. She picks up a fry, and nibbles on it. She can't help but smile at the taste of seasoned potatoes. Nothing cheered her up more than good food, usually, in most days. "At least I hope so. Hell with the right application you can launch someone from here to third avenue." She winks at Jane. She toys with her fork absently, propping her chin on one hand as she watches the goings on outside.

Food! Yes. Jane's pensive for some moments, as her fingers take up the ketchup bottle and use a bit for her fries. Once the server's gone and the floor is yielded back, she speaks. "We'll definitely work at seeing what my voice can do. Twice I've felt helpless, have been that, there's only one thing to do about it. Develop something I can use without warning, as you do. I'm not one for wallowing long. And… back to Elle. I'm no psychologist, it would be better if I were, but… the legal training I never wanted and went through anyway applies, a little. Part of it concerns advising people on behavior and consequences, persuading them to follow a certain course. She's… badly burnt, Elena, so a lot of what she does comes from that. Her father and associates at that organization, they…" She trails off, her knuckles whitening a little where they grip the table. "They took memory from you too, and threatened your father? Still… Even though burnt, Elle has free will. She can learn to make better choices. My task as her friend is getting her there. First step is to find a safe venting place, somewhere she can go when she needs to just throw lightning around and cut loose, like I do when I need to scream. Or another outlet, guitar for me. It's work for you."

"Yeah. They did. A while ago, but I don't remember what they took….obviously. Still that was before….what I know now. So in retrospect they didn't do much damage. I was lucky they got to me early, I suppose. Most of the information I have, I store up here." She taps her temple. "I have an excellent memory. And a knack for hiding places. But you already know that, I think." She quirks a small smile at Jane. At her observation on outlets, she gives Jane a nod, looking off to the side. "Yeah. Work, dance, cooking too. I have a lot - like I told someone else before, ever since my mother died, I've been….I don't know. I took it as a sign that I should be a big girl now and figure out my own problems myself. God knows everyone else has got enough, I want to be someone that lightens the load, not the opposite. I function better that way. I'm….happy…that way." Save for yesterday, a thought that is surprising - so much so that she stops from stirring absently at her straw to contemplate it. Finally, she continues, and takes a sip of her cola.

"Big girl," Jane repeats softly, opining "I think that day, in your view, you stopped being a girl. The bridge from child to woman, ready or not, found you." It's not alcohol, but no one says it has to be for toasting. She raises her cola glass in such fashion, quietly offering "To being women, keeping ourselves and each other sane and not going off the rails."

There is a pause, and Elena smiles slightly. She lifts her own glass to clink it lightly against Jane's. "Hear, hear," she states, taking a sip after the toast, and settles into eating the rest of her lunch.

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