2019-07-02 - Do Something Silly


Illyana and Keiko get to talk about life as it is.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Tue Jul 2 05:31:48 2019
Location: 46 Willow Place

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Take it easy, Agent Koa Turner had said. Take some time off and recover. That was a bit over a week ago and Keiko has tried. It might be making her a little stir crazy - relaxing isn't really a word in the peruvians dictionary.

Not that Keiko owns a dictionary or could read it.

From the garden of the house she's living in now, comes a shrill cry - it's something horrendous. Not quite human, but not exactly animal either. It might disturb anyone who is home and should they care to look they'll see a *huge* Eagle on the ground, next to Keiko who happens to petting its head. It's Onyxia, one of Keikos bound spirits.

Well, Onyxia with a difference - instead of an eagles head, there's of human. Giving new meaning to the term Harpy Eagle.

A stepping disk opens. Just a little one. And Illyana sticks her head out with furrowed brow. Catching sight of Keiko and one of her spirits, her expression relaxes. "Oh. Hurm. I might need to expand the privacy Wards." So the neighbors don't call the cops if they're going to have noises like *that*.

The stepping disk opens wider, from a small window to a door and the blonde sorceress steps through. She's got on casual clothes from the stuff WAND sent over. Capris. T-shirt. She could totally pass for normal. If you don't look at her eyes. Or can't feel that aura around her.

Illyana stays on the deck, not getting too close to the creature. More out of respect to Keiko than fear.

"Shhhh…." Keiko's saying as she strokes the creatures throat. "… you'll sca—" Illyana will hear that as Keiko glances over, a tense sort of wariness about her as the stepping disk appears. "I'm trying to keep her quiet but…"

This is the bird that Illyana has seen previously. It's different though. The head is a humans, the feathers are more leathery in look. It's still a spirit but it's corrupting. Just like its Mistress.

The bird butts it head against Keikos cheek and hops across the space to Illyana, stopping in front of her in a deferential sort of way. It's huge and is taller than both Keiko and Illyana.

Illyana Rasputina shrugs a bit, holding her ground as the creature comes over to her, lifting her chin so she can look up at the taller harpy. The blonde doesn't ask why Keiko's not keeping her quiet. "What does she need?"

Pale blue eyes shift over to Keiko as she waits for an answer, though she doesn't dismiss the dangerous spirit.

The bird … seems to bow to Illyana and sticks its head under her hand. Keiko shakes her head and sighs. "Attention…" Not fully transformed to a demon, it's so damn close. "… food." The peruvian says. "I … was in the habit of letting them out when we were … there."

Limbo. Is it any wonder that the spirit recognises Illyana for what she is, then?

"Her and Bella mostly. They were good protectors." beat "I will dismiss her if that's what you want."

A faint smile touches Illyana's lips as the bird bumps up against the blonde's hand, ruffling her head before stroking. Illyana seems content to pet her for the moment as she looks over to Keiko. "So she's been living on a diet of demons?" There's a soft grunt. "That explains a lot." She sounds grimly resigned.

Illyana turns her attention back to the harpy eagle. "Of course you would." Dismiss the spirit if Illyana asked. "But you don't need to volunteer things to my whim, Keiko. You're not a slave, no matter what… some people's first impressions might be."

"Me… my spirits… feed on me." Keiko answers quietly. Which is possibly more concerning than anything. "They certainly got some demon flesh. It was necessary, to keep me safe. To keep Piotr safe. Then, to protect Elena." She doesn't add, though Illyana might intuit it, they were also company for the woman.

The bird responds to the ruffling and stroking before hopping back to Keiko for the same sort of attention. It doesn't make the spirit caller smile, but it certainly softens her features a little.

"I … have always followed, Illyana." She starts, trying to explain. "In the Nightfall, then Limbo and now. I'm not a Slave, no but I was a soldier and in many ways, that hasn't changed. I know Piotr doesn't understand what has happened, I barely do, but I know … your claim."

The peruvian gestures frustratedly. "I am yours but I am more free now than I have ever been."

Illyana Rasputina leans a hip against the deck railing, arms crossing as she looks over and watches Keiko with the spirit. "It was something that took me a long time to understand when I first got back. That there was objection to the idea of following another. No, everyone must be free." Her expression twists to one of distaste. While Illyana has managed to not be vocal about her disagreement, she's still never ascribed to it. Clearly.

The blonde looks over to Keiko then. "And you can stand on that, if you need something stable under your feet. But you aren't my servant." Her lips quirk into a smirk. "If you're going to soldier, than be a general."

"Piotr … wishes the claim was his. Thinks you … will take me away, I suppose." Keiko shakes her head and nudges Onyxia. "Stretch your wings. I will be safe here…" she murmurs to the bird.

The bird shrieks rather painfully, causing Keiko to wince, and lifts itself in the air. The downdraft from its wings swirling the debris around.

Keiko watches Onyxia as she wings her high in the sky before turning her attention to Illyana. "No one is ever truly free. Even when I ran from the Nightfall, I was still … beholden to someone. My landlord, the people I worked for. They all … owned … some part of me. It is true for everyone, just not all like to admit it." beat "If you are worried I will tell people I am yours, I will not."

At this distance, it's easy to see that Keiko's eyes are catslitted. They're a dark warm brown at the moment but Illyana has seen them turn yellow. "I don't know what I need, Illyana, but it helps." She frowns though at the blondes assertion. "A … general?"

Illyana Rasputina watches the bird's wings stroke downwards, eyes narrowing against the downdraft and debris stirred up. Her gaze follows her upwards as she listens to Keiko. "I tried to explain to him. He's mine as well. He can have a claim on you as well." She glances back over to Keiko again with a bit of a smirk. "He should probably find out if you'll let him first."

As to telling others? Illyana waves a hand dismissively. "Those that it bothers? I don't care about." She steps into Keiko's space then, reaching for the Peruvian's throat. Her touch is light, fingertips stroking against the collar there.

The collar has melded with Keiko's flesh, nearly impossible to tell where the skin ends and the leather begins. The buckle and the gem 'melted' long ago, silvery pink lines twisting through the leather circle. At Illyana's touch, the lines glow and Keiko's eyes float closed for just a moment. "It responds to you …" she says shakily.

"Koa Koa told me you used Prometheum. I … that was an investment that you made." She knows how rare prometheum is and the amount that she now sports in her body, might be considered considerable.

"Piotr has a claim on me, Illyana. He is the father of my daughter." But is he more?

Illyana Rasputina's gaze shifts from Keiko's collar to meet hers, smirking briefly. "I'm aware." Her pale blue eyes glints. "But does he understand that?"

As to the collar reacting to her, the blonde nods. "Mmmm. More than was originally intended." It's an admission she wouldn't normally make. But then nothing's gone as intended, has it?

Illyana closes her eyes and her magic reaches out, seeking the remnants of the gem. Or more specifically, the memory, to see what happened to it.

The pink lines in the collar glow and pulse in response to Illyana's magic, causing Keiko to sigh just a little "I can feel it when you do that. The memory that you took. It warms … me." beat "You didn't intend to invest so heavily?"

Was it just the metal or was it more, Keiko wonders.

"Piotr knows. He doesn't, didn't, believe I want more. Didn't understand what happened, when we opened the heart and beat that demon. Or … what my life had been like."

"The collar … sings … when you touch it."

"I didn't intend to keep you so plainly." Illyana corrects. "And it reacts more than I originally intended. I had some expectations you'd tear it off once we'd finished. It wouldn't make my claim on you less, but you didn't need to know that." The sorceress offers Keiko a small smirk.

Illyana gives a thoughtful nod, thumb stroking along the leather bonded to Keiko's flesh. "You're always so hard. So severe. I wanted you to have *something*. I've always had Piotr. Even when the rest of the world may hate me and think I'm evil, I knew he'd stand with me. In front of me, given the chance." Even when the situation might not be best served with Piotr leading the charge. She makes a small eeeh sound. "Piotr's not great with matters of the heart." She admits. "That sensitive Artist's soul, I think. Somehow, he never thinks he's good enough for anyone. Even when he's too good for all of them."

That the collar 'sings' gets an arched brow. "I'll assume that's pleasant, else you'd have used another descriptor." Again that touch of humor. Sarcasm. Like everything is a game. "And does my magic still hurt you?" Because yes. She noticed that before, even if she never commented on it. Even if Keiko wouldn't classify the pain of it as hurting.

"I wasn't supposed to end up in Limbo, ruling by your brothers side, either." Keiko answers. "It was the collar though, that had your demons choose me, wasn't it?" The one time that her demons had seen Keiko in Limbo, the small woman had been forced to her knees, not a recommendation for the Consort.

"It helped, in Limbo, as I started slipping away. Piotr would touch the gem to start with and … I'd remember." It's likely a good chance that's how Elena came to be. "Now, I have Elena and she's mine. Mine to protect and look after." beat "I have to be, had to be, hard, Illyana. If you're not hard, not strong, you don't survive in my world. Limbo only reinforced that for me."

Keiko doesn't blame Illyana for any of this. "That you did this, helped me hold on to what I was. I'm not that person anymore, though. I … don't know what I am."

"Hurt me? No. I almost … hunger for the touch of it. It make my collar sing, yes and the tattoo on my back thrum in anticipation. "

Illyana Rasputina tilts her head in a nod. Yeah. None of this has gone even remotely according to plan. She moves to sit on the stairs that lead from the back deck to the garden, motioning for Keiko to join her. "Yeah, that's likely why the grabbed you." She admits. "By the way. If you ever rule your own realm? Don't let the demons watch TV. No good can come of it." Heir to Limbo. Eeesh. "On the upside, you likely saved some poor thing that wouldn't have survived."

"I'm glad. That it helped. I was hoping it would help you *here*, but.." She shrugs. "I know about being hard." She says, agreeing with the Peruvian. "But." She says, punctuating it. "That can't be all you are. That won't get you through the hardest time. You have Elena and Piotr. Let them in. I've seen you with Elena. Don't deny her that memory you have yourself. That one, warm memory you had to hold. And, frustrating you may be, but you're mine now and I take care of what is mine."

Keiko isn't likely to be any less frustrating. If anything she might become more so, but in different ways.

Keiko's eyes turn to the sky, searching the spec that should be Onyxia. It's up there, circling above them. Stretching her wings and watching.

As Illyana gestures, the peruvian hesistates before joining her. "I don't ever intend ruling my own realm. Seven years beside someone strong, was enough for me." Seven years that she didn't dare let her guard down either. "But I won't let my demons watch TV." It's a muted statement, much like everything else she says, but it's likely sarcasm or dry humour. "I wasn't here long enough, was I? Maybe it will help now, though."

At the rest, Keiko's eyes fall to the hands in her lap. "I … don't know how to be other than I am, Illyana. I am trying though. To let them in. To … feel something. When we got back, I couldn't feel anything."

Illyana Rasputina stretches her legs out in front of herself, leaning back on her arms with palms pressed against the wood deck. She shakes her head. "You didn't have enough time here, and you didn't have the autonomy you needed to help you find… you." It's hard to find yourself when you're just trying to survive. "I'd like to give you the safety, the space, to do that now." Because Keiko is hers? Because Keiko is in a relationship with her brother? Because Keiko is her niece's mother? Hard to tell.

"Take some time to find yourself." Illyana agrees. "But we don't exist in a vacuum, if we can help it." She leans over then, and bumps her shoulder against Keiko's. "And you know, it's OK to ask things of those who hold claim on you. That's part of *my* part of this arrangement."

It's funny how Illyana says that. Keiko had said similar to Koa and Piotr in her conversations. "I … intend to." She had made that decision, without realising, when they'd been returned. It was part of why Piotr was out of sorts. "I don't know how, but I will. SHIELD are paying me to do the maintenance work here. Martha Wayne foundation has given me a contract. For the first time since I left the Nightfall, I don't have to worry about a roof over my head or food in my stomach."

There are other complications though. Like her daughter. Not a complication but … you know.

"I'll try, Illyana, but its hard." She'd had to rely on herself for so long. "I wouldn't even know where to start." At least she's honest?

"You and Sam are … a … thing?"

She probably doesn't want to answer that.

"Try just enjoying something. Try trusting someone with something small." Illyana shrugs. "Go from there. Take some time for yourself. Join in with a group even if you don't feel like you're contributing. Do something silly. And frivolous. Just because you can. Along the way, you'll find out what you like. And maybe from there, you'll find out what you want."

The question about Sam gets a slightly bashful duck of her head. "We're.. trying it out." She says dryly. "But yeah. I suppose we're a 'thing'." It's not surprising she doesn't elaborate.

"Do … what?" That stops Keiko. Do something silly and frivolous. That's … novel. Which is exactly why Illyana's suggesting it. "I'll … try." She might not be very good at it, but she'll try.

"How long was it for you?" 30 hours or there about on Earth, 7 years in Limbo. "Uh. If you want to talk about it." She gets if she doesn't. There's things she just won't share. "A 'thing' is good. Or so I'm told."

Later maybe, Illyana will tell Keiko that it's OK to be *bad* at something. You can even be bad at something and still enjoy it. Look at the love of Karaoke. The blonde nods as Keiko says she'll try. "Good."

"About.. seven weeks? Round guess." Illyana's awful with time to start with. She chuckles at the offer and shakes her head. "Maybe. But not now." She had Sam, who is actually y'know, well adjusted and not broken as badly as the rest of them.

Illyana pushes to her feet, and holds her hand out for Keiko. "C'mon. I know where Sam's wallet is and we can go get ice cream."

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