2019-06-28 - Misheard Statements


Communication between the ex Limbo rulers seems to be hitting an all time low.

Log Info:

Storyteller: {$storyteller}
Date: 28 June 2018
Location: Willow Place

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While Piotr had been tending Mikhail after their return, Keiko had needed to go out. She'd told Piotr she'd explain later … but he couldn't have missed how the skin about that collar that had fused was red and a little blistered.

He might have suspected who needed her help, as she took to the skies on Onyxia.

It's several hours later, just before dawn, as Keiko returns. The small tattooed woman slips into the house, past the couch in the lounge room to the kitchen and puts the kettle on. She needs … tea. Another luxury they didn't have during their time in Limbo.

She's expecting to see Piotr. In a way, she's hoping to see him, as she sets out a second mug along with hers.

If Keiko had come through the front door, she'd seen Piotr asleep on the couch. With Mikhail in his bed, the big mutant had decided to comically take it over. His legs are draped over the end of it, bent at the knees, and the woven throw that was on the back of it was way too small to cover him.

As he hears the whistling of the kettle, Piotr stirs awake with a grunt of agitation. Everything is tight from being on the couch and he moves to sit up to stretch. "Hello?" he calls into the kitchen as he starts to rise, unsure of who is in there, and if it's Illyana, to give her warning.

Keiko looks to the lounge room, a slight frown on her face. "It is Keiko, Piotr. I am making tea." she says quietly. "There is a cup for you." Not do you want one. She hasn't got out of that habit and it's possible she may never. "Also vodka."

When Piotr enters, she's busy putting the water in the cups and letting the tea seep. The bottle of vodka is placed on the table along with two glasses. Just in case, maybe. The tea soon joins them.

Then she finds some cold cuts in the fridge and sets them out as well. It's a luxury, it really is, being able to do this.

The skin on her neck is still red, the blistering has settled down though.

"Elena is sleeping." It's a question not question followed by "Join me …" as slides into a chair. "Mikhail… is healing."

It's so hard for her to talk sometimes.

Pushing himself to his feet, Piotr is tired, it shows. It was a hard night on the couch. Still in his pajama pants and little else, he pads into the kitchen, and as he passes by Keiko, there's a light touch to her shoulder. No more than that - perhaps out of worry that she'd flinch.

But that causes him to see the marks on her neck, and his brow furrows. "What happened?" he asks her as he takes a seat. For now, it's tea. Vodka may come soon after.

"Do not forget Elena has school today. Will make sure she gets there, will need to help Mikhail. I do not believe he is.. our Mikhail."

Keiko doesn't flinch when Piotr touches her shoulder. Instead there's a light brush of her fingers over his - fleeting and then gone.

"I will see to Mikhail." the spirit caller answers that first, frowning at how tired he looks. "You should sleep with Elena. I will sleep on the couch." it's the logical answer but she suspects he'll be stubborn.

Touching the collar gingerly, Keiko sighs. This likely to be a point of contention between them but she wants to, needs to, be honest. "My collar burned me because Koa was in trouble. That's why I went out. To find him and see that he was alright."

"Not your Mikhail." never a question. She hadn't met his brother though that was surely coming. What would the elder, younger, sibling think of her. She's not Russian.

Now that he knows, Illyana has bound both Koa and Keiko to her, and to each other, Piotr frowns. He takes a drink from the tea, trying to be practical about it. They've made some leeway in figuring each other out.

"He is your friend. You would not expect less from me were I to be in similar circumstance." he comments finally. "I am sorry that it hurt you." That his sister put this pain upon her. "It is your room. He is my brother. It is short time."

"Illyana and I will figure out what to do." About Mikhail. "When he is ready, he will meet his niece."


"He is. My friend." Who wouldn't accept her help. Not that she says that. "Thank you." That is a concession and it's hard won for Keiko. She doesn't touch the tea even though she made it for herself. She's worried.

Then Piotr drops that bombshell. Her help isn't wanted and her daughter will be introduced to the brother.

But not her. Not Keiko. Not the woman who had been honed into a weapon, who didn't know what family was. Not the woman who had given birth to that neice.

"Alright then." There's no sign of the pain that sears through the numbness that she feels. Too well trained to let it show. Well not from her anyway.

The anger that had driven her for the seven years they'd been together takes hold. The brand on stomach glows - seen in the space between the hem of her shirt and the band of her trousers. Black chitinous scales ripple over her skin.

"I will clean here and in the morning I will work around the house." there seems little else to say. Piotrs pronouncement final. Slowly Keiko takes her cup to pour the contents down the sink.

And yet she controls the temper, like a totally coiled spring.


There's confusion on Piotr's face. He had assumed that Keiko would meet Mikhail as well. He tilts his head slightly. "Do you not want Elena to meet her uncle and you?" he asks, "If he is from another dimension, I would understand why."

Failure to communicate clearly between the two has been more than a language barrier for them as he reaches to take her hand and keep her from leaving. "Please. Stay." At least he said please.

"Elena should meet her uncle." It's possible she doesn't hear the 'and you'. "It is what you wish."

First Koa can't let her help and now this. Keiko isn't sure where she belongs. "And you will take our daughter to school and see to your brother." she can't take Elena to school, she's not allowed to know where it is.

She stops though as Piotr takes her hand and looks back at the man. Her catseyes are bright yellow. "You want something."

"I want my brother to meet the woman that stole my heart and gave me a daughter in return." Piotr says in mild irritation. Did she not hear him when he said that?

"Mikhail is here. Why would you not want to meet him?" He's getting frustrated by the moment.

"You do." something flickers in her eyes, the yellow slowly giving way to the dark chocolate brown. "You…" Keiko swallow, her eyes floating closed for a second as she struggles. "…. I offered help. You said you would do it. That he wou—-"

"I want to meet your family, Piotr." beat "I misheard."

It's the closest she'll come to an apology. Maddeningly frustrating they had called her.

She doesn't move as he holds her hand. His frustration seems to just roll over her. "You said he might not be your Mikhail…"

"I said I would, but I did not say without you." Piotr frowns at that. And with her hands folded, his large one settles on top of hers.

"We are parents." But not a couple. He doesn't know how to address that. Or even if she would. "We are family."

"He may not be my Mikhail. If he is Mikhail, he is family. Our daughter's dyadya, your cuñado." Even if that's not technically correct, it's the closest he can approximate. He's trying to make this work. His hand squeezes on hers, and starts to slowly release.

"I misheard." Keiko won't explain. She'll try harder in the future. To be better.

"I want… to help." her fingers flex in his, holding them when he goes to let her go.

"We are family. I… am trying to learn." Piotrs trying to address the gap between them, it's just slow and takes time. In return, Keiko's trying - even if she seems to be stubborn.

"I… can't be involved with our daughters schooling. Not like a mother should. I can teach her to fight, to be strong, to hunt. That is all." is she really a mother? Is it not the image that's portrayed on those TV shows she watched.

"Tell me about the Mikhail you knew." beat "Tell me about your family."

She hasn't let his hand go.

"You can help her with homework. With me. We will learn together." Because this is all new to Piotr too. He always wanted to be a father. He just never expected it like this.

But there's no complaints about the /who/ the mother is.

"My Mikhail…" Piotr sighs, letting out a breath. "He was my starshiy brat. Big brother." he explains. "He was never one for farm. Head always in stars. Wanted to be cosmonaut. When they chose him, I was proud. He worked very hard. And trained. They picked him for mission. They left - and we were told that he died. In space." His eyes close, the sadness there. "It broke mama and papa's hearts. Illyana was too young to understand. But if he has been there, in pocket all this time. Like you and I were in Limbo. Like Illyana was. Maybe time slower. Different. I have not had a chance to ask him if he had been there years. Or minutes."

It occurs to Keiko that Piotr really doesn't know much about her when he says she can help with the homework. There's a reason she teaches Elena the physical things. Not only is she frighteningly good at them, it is what she can do.

"I don't read or write well." Not can't but don't. One is a failure the other is a choice. "You will help her." Making a decision, the tattooed woman takes a seat again, leaving her hand in his.

The cold cup of tea pushed aside. That's when she pulls the vodka over and pours them both a measure.

"You were young, yes. When he left? Illyana was younger."

She takes a drink of that vodka, enjoying the burn at the back of her throat.

"Do you want to learn?" Piotr asks. If she wants to read or write. "I am not best teacher. But know Dick and Jane." It's an attempt at humor for him, as he realizes they've been holding hands for a little longer than usual and his fingers play her knuckles.

The vodka is poured and they both take the shot.

He sets his glass down next to hers for another.

"Da. I was 10. Illyana was baby." he says with a sigh. "I was much smaller then. Before growth spurt." A smile is offered to her at that.

"I don't know them." Keiko completely misses the joke because of she would. "They are teachers, yes." she shrugs at the question and looks at their hands "We can try." maybe it would help them.

"The growth spurt in Limbo." Piotr must mean that one she thinks. It's hard for Keiko to tell when people are joking.

"Later today, you will talk to Mikhail. Find out the truth as he sees it." outside dawn is starting.

"Now, you should sleep." with a gentle squeeze Keiko releases his hand and clears the table. When people come in later, the only evidence they were talking will be the cups on draining board.

There's a pause as Piotr feels that squeeze on his hand as he rises to his feet.

"I would sleep better with you by my side."

And with that, he's turning to walk away.

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