2008-05-10: Transmissions from Sanctum Somnus (Dark Future)


FutureKory_icon.gif FutureLeslie_icon.gif

and guest starring …

Summary: A day in the life of a woman who exists mainly in dreams now. (Click the hour of the day to see guest star)

Future Date: March 2012

Transmissions from Sanctum Somnus

The Muse's Sanctum Somnus

Sleep brings no surcease, no succor to the woman known only as the Muse to most of the city, the world. Truth be told she's built up so much endurance over the years that sleep is almost something she does as a form of recreation when she does it at all. Five minutes here. Ten there. And she's good for a day; longer. So she's in contact with someone sleeping almost all the time, and so rarely lays her own head down.

When she sleeps, like anyone else, she dreams. Her dreams are not pleasant. With her ability, her gift, she cannot make them pleasant. So they're just memories that replay painfully behind her eyelids. Her family gone, all but Anzeti, and him, she failed; he's an addict now. Boosted into the power that he's wanted for so long. She only sees him when he shows up, laughably enough, to check on her — and try to get money out of her.

Her bodyguard and man Friday always locks him up and out until the withdrawal cripples him and leaves him too weak to do anything but get dropped off at a shelter.

Randall, she failed. He embraced the easiest possible method of getting the power and the world of crime embraced back.

Lee as well. Forced into servitude to the government.

But Peter and Hiro, at least, she hasn't let down.

And a few others. Sophie has stood by her, steadfast, a true friend. Better still, a recovered Leslie, thanks to Sophie's ability, now serves as the Muse's right hand, aforementioned body guard and man Friday. He handles her investments, and makes sure her groceries and garbage are taken care of, so she need not step out into the cold, hurtful world. Yes, it's enabling her agoraphobia, and he knows it. But the Muse is happy this way. She does good this way. He's in her life; he does not speak the other name. He knows she thinks of it enough on her own, and the tears fall.

On the rare occasion she wishes companionship in person, Leslie is there to listen to her talk. With her voice. He sees her as beautiful now as she was then. He sees past the greying hair, and the crow's feet forming at her eyes, the worry lines at her brows and mouth. And for that, she's grateful.

In some distant, dim corridor of her hindbrain, the Muse is still Kory. And Kory knows Leslie would willingly lay down his life for her. She would not ask it of him. And she is aware he hopes that one day the pain of losing Randall will recede and lessen enough that she will turn to him. Even with his rage and madness gone, still he loves her, and she is grateful.

But it is the beginning of another day — well, as other people reckon it — and there are things she must do. People she must see. Dreams to visit. REM sleep occurs for only a few minutes, and a lot can be conveyed in a short time — so it's a full day for the Muse. Situations to monitor, set in motion, and tweak. Operatives and runners to check with. She drifts to one of her battered comfy chairs, and makes herself comfortable, long airy gown floating down around her.

The Muse has an hour free. So that hour is spent in Bed-Stuy, easing the dreams of a teacher who is still braving the war zone that is Brooklyn so he can be alert and rested for his day. She smiles, knowing Lee will protest and resist her plans, both of them, but that he'll also be caught off guard by the one she's built with Cam and the woman called Jade. A shower. A bite of breakfast — if she doesn't eat, Leslie worries — and then she settles into a comfortable spot to visit the dreams of an old friend.

Kory texts Leslie's PDA to advise him that Sophie says hello, and to work on finding a financial strategy to help KeLyssa so that she need not deal Boost. She pads barefoot to the refrigerator, helps herself to a bottled beverage, then settles in her window seat, mind already seeking her next client as she drinks…

A devastated Muse, head full of recriminations for things said and things left unsaid, stumbles from the spot where she'd let her mind wander in the winter sunlight. Bare feet smack against the parquet floor. Fist balled against her mouth to muffle a sob, she smacks a palm against the stereo, turning it up loudly. She huddles in a ball in her shower, sobbing under the hot water until it runs out. She can't even allow herself the luxury of going to pieces. Too many people need her, or she'd just ask Leslie if he still remembers the recipe for that tea…

Kory can only stand there, still as a statue, for a long moment, as the enormity of what her dear friend has undertaken settles into the recesses of her mind…as well as the enormity of what just transpired between them emotionally. "Good luck. May we all wake tomorrow into a world worth living in," she whispers with the air of a fervent prayer. Back to work, then, the better to push matters of the heart out of her thoughts.

8:00 pm:

Kory has a light dinner with Leslie, letting him tell her of the world outside. She listens, and nods in the right places, and thanks him politely for the repast, and the companionship. She dismisses him for the night, knowing full well he'll stick around for at least a couple hours, just in case she needs him. But when darkness falls, and her PDA softly tings a reminder of a standing appointment, she settles on an antique fainting couch and reaches out for an old, familiar mind, hoping she can get through…

Pieces are falling into place, even as pieces are falling apart. Peter said there's no hope, and Kory tries so hard to ignore that desolation. But she hopes. It exudes practically from her pores. Touching him, kissing him — she imparted him just a little, even as she revealed a vulnerable heart, and feelings for him she'd believed she'd mastered. But he has feelings for her as well. No one knows more than she of the strength of love. Combined with hope, Kory believes it a tiny bit of protection from the misfortunate circumstance into which he willingly throws himself. Into which he willingly sacrifices himself for the better of … well, everyone. The Muse does her part — she keeps on keepin' on — the better to hold this world together until there's nothing else left to do.

Kory waits for Leslie to fall asleep. She has a few hours to herself before she begins the cycle again, with different people. Checking on Randall, to make sure he's safe — even with his power. And, despite the odd mingling of pain and sympathy it invokes in her — Portia. Who isn't really Randall's woman as much as Kory believed. One moment of weakness has reminded her of what once was, and she has …an agreement of sorts, now. With both of them. Checking on Cam and Ian, to make sure they haven't given into temptation given the odds. Checking in on Lee. And Nima. Checking in on Benjamin Winters. On her brother. On KeLyssa's brother. And KeLyssa herself. On Quinn. And the other hundreds, thousands, millions, of minds that sleep and dream in the naked city.

Unless Peter succeeds.

She takes a slow, deep breath, and curls up on the window seat with some of the copious, copious notes, hoping to find a pattern someone might have missed. Just in case.

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