2019-12-25 - Hell is for Children


Thea and Anya have a heart to heart about Thea's experience in a hell dimension.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Wed Dec 25 03:02:58 2019
Location: RP Room 1

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The group is swept up for a while in the pandemonium of a dance floor. It doesn't take long for some to be separated from the others; each going their own way to enjoy their own bit of fun. A clever eye might at one point catch Anya, in all of her skin-tight glory, engaged in some particularly risque dancing with a swinger couple. However, before long, after kissing the man and the woman alike, she slips from the dance floor in search of Thea.

Are you still here? she sends via SMS. Meet me on the patio. Need some fresh air.

Thea is, in fact, still there. She just puts her phone away, leaning up away from the bar and asking for some more shots.

Once the shooters are in hand, she will stalk her way between people, and slip out onto the patio, feeling the chill sharply after the warmth of the club. The warmth from the alcohol is also radiating from her skin, though she is not flushed yet, yet alone tipsy.

She will slip over to the slightly more shadowy edge of the patio to look for and wait for Anya.

Once Anya makes her way outside, the brisk air is a relief to her; neither is she flushed, but damn close, and not from the alcohol.

"Hey," she says, upon finding that shadowy place and her friend. "Sorry about that, ditching you back there." She reaches up to catch the zipper of her catsuit at the neck, and pulls it down a little in order to get some more fresh air. "That's… one hell of a dance floor," she explains, and can't help but grin a little.

Thea will arch an eyebrow, offering one of the shooters Anya-ward. "Ditching me? We were all doing our own thing. It's not like we came here together with a plan to spend all night dancing with each other." Her tone is even, calm. "It's not bad."

She will watch Anya for a moment, before her head tips slightly to the side. "So what's up?"

The shooter is taken and downed without much of a thought. She's either got one hell of a tolerance, or the enhanced spider-physiology extends to alcohol tolerance as well.

Once the shot is taken, she sets the empty glass down on a nearby flat surface and leans up against the wall, studying Thea for a moment.

"Are you okay?" she finally asks, after studying the other woman for a few moments. "We don't know each other too well, but you seem… different."

The other shot is taken by Thea - they both know she needn't worry about alcohol tolerance unless she wants to get drunk. The glass will join its brethren on that flat surface.

Both brows lift, as Thea looks at Anya as that question is asked. "Isn't friendly psychology usually done at the bar, where the booze is?" She asks, though the attempt at humor doesn't carry well in her tone.

"I am different. I'm four years older than the last time you saw me. If we hadn't gone through the hunt of the thing we will not name, I would feel crazy telling you that. I got pulled into a hell dimension, and spent four years there, while no one here had time to miss me."

Though the attempt at humor may not have reached Thea's tone, Anya still caught it, and she laughs briefly. "Hey, I'm a bartender," she points out, and slings her clutch around to produce a small hip flask, which is uncapped and offered to Thea first.

The truth causes all hint of humor to drain from Anya's expression. For a split second, she considers disbelief; but her science brain not only knows too much about theory, she's also witnessed phenomena like this first hand. "Wait…" She glances to the rest of the patio, then hushes her voice. "Four… four years? In a hell dimension?" She shakes her head, and looks over Thea with an expression of great concern born almost at once. "Wha… how?"

"I know. Luke's. He's a nice guy." At least he's been nice to Thea, when there was nothing else really nice to hold to. She will totally take the flask for a couple of swallows, before she offers it back.

She's silent, her face blank, while Anya's brain skids and tries to grasp the facts that had just been dumped. She will barely glance over the patio after Anya does, before her eyes rest on the young woman's face, glitter and all. "Yes. I took a job that was just supposed to be security, on a called in favor from an old contact. Myself and someone else on the security team survived the.. fall to the other dimension. Hell is the only word for it, really. It looked like versions of hell from films and things. Monsters, horrible obstacles, demons, and foul magics."

Thea tosses her hair back, just a bit, still looking at Anya. If recounting 4 years she wasn't sure she'd survive affects her emotionally, it's not showing. "Ingenuity for weapons, and a /lot/ of my powers being used."

The science brain wants to rush through all of the theories and calculations around alternate and parallel dimensions, space time differential calculations, and the like.

However, Anya is as much human being as she is scientist. She's never truly excelled in the way some brains do, because she has too much heart. Said calculations are set aside, and instead, she's considering the truths laid out for her, both spoken and inferred.

"…. fuck."

She lifts the flask and takes a couple swallows herself, feeling the momentary burn and heat that comes with it. If only she could turn off her powers for a moment and actually feel it the way she used to.

The flask is tucked into the palm of her hand, where a pinkie is twisting the cap back into place without thought. "What a mind fuck," she says empathetically. "I can't even…" Her eyes linger upon Thea, forgetting all of the reasons she came here, intent on getting drunk and misbehaving with strangers, and now her entire worldview is just herself and Thea in this little corner of the patio.

Thea's just standing there, letting Anya take her time, casually comfortable in those high heels and in the cold weather despite her short dress. The single cuss word does make her give a tiny little smirk.

"Yes." Is the single word response to the mention of it being a mind fuck, those contact tinted eyes still steady as she looks at Anya. "It's not something you want to even.. Trust me." Thea may have nightmares, flashbacks, but she's in denial.

Anya shakes her head, and draws a long breath through her nose. "Does, does anyone else know?" she asks. "Peter…? SHIELD?"

"The person I was stuck there with, obviously. Another agent. But it's not something I've told people, no. Most of SHIELD won't notice a difference, except maybe Sarah." Anya knows Sarah, but Thea hasn't seen her yet since she got back. "I've not been seeking much in the way of known social contacts." A hand gestures towards the club, towards the shot glasses. "Taking the time to break it down, or some other psycho babble."

It doesn't take long for the shock of such news to wear off. For someone as young as Anya, that alone should be of some concern. She shakes her head again, and lets out a long sigh.

"You should probably tell someone. At SHIELD." Anya is quite certain it's the last thing Thea wants to hear, but she doesn't care. She gestures toward the club's interior indicatively.

"Self destructive behavior's awesome. Trust me. And I don't think it's stupid to engage in it sometimes, obviously. But if that's all you've got…?" She shakes her head.

"More people know my secret then I'd like," Anya explains. "I've… gotten better, but when I first started, I sucked at it. You know, the whole masked vigilante thing. I used to wear the same fucking backpack when I was out web slinging as I wore to class at NYU, which, in hindsight, is really, really stupid. But, since some people know, y'know, I had some people to turn to. Like Luke. He knows. He's someone I can talk to. So, when I put on a latex catsuit and go looking for a couple swingers to get down with? It's not the only way I'm self medicating. You get me?"

Those brows go up again. "Why would I tell anyone at SHIELD? The only effect it would have on my work for SHIELD is that I've honed use of my powers. My hand to hand combat has gotten better, that sort of thing." There's a mildly careless shrug.

She will give a very not elegant snort of derision. "I'm out being social, and not hiding out at home and doing far worse things than having a few drinks. I'm not getting drunk, or doing dugs." There's a sharper look at Anya. "I'm not looking for a swinger couple or anyone else to get down with. I'm just doing what I can to re-adjust back to what people think is my normal. People who have no idea how different I am, now." Her head tilts. "Luke knows, actually. I was searching the city for the person I was trapped there with. Ended up in his bar, and since he knows about you, I sort of started drinking and blurted it out."

Anya shrugs, but doesn't yet explain why she suggested Thea tell someone at SHIELD.

"Hey, the only 'drugs' I do is weed, and that's not even a drug," she defends. "But, I've been down that road. I wasn't the best kid, you know. Growing up in Spanish Harlem when the Latin Kings were still around? I did my first line of coke in an alley at 14. Only reason I didn't get caught up in all of that is 'cause I saw what it was doing to the people around me."

She can't help but smirk at the thought that Luke knows something of Thea's secrets, but she doesn't remark on it.

"All I'm saying is, the people you work with? I'm sure they have a shrink or something. After the first really fucked up thing I saw as Spider-Girl, I tried to walk away from it. I ended up kind of having a meltdown; ended up in a lawyer's office, telling her about what I was doing, trying to find out what kind of rights I have if I ever got busted, or whatever. I realized… what I really needed was people to talk to. So." She raises the flask again, takes a snort, and offers it to Thea. "If you think the whole 'SHIELD shrink' thing is a bad idea, you can count me in with the whole Luke Cage category."

" I haven't even tried weed, so I think I'm okay." Thea points out. "I've been around drugs in the past, but it was never much of a temptation for me." She really doesn't get why SHIELD would care, so long as she's healthy, whole, and still functional.

"Well, you know now as much as Luke does. I've been seeing fucked up since I was 15. I was /trained/ to do the fucking up, Anya. The Spiders might see me as a handy healer, but I was trained in my powers to be the opposite. I worked as an assassin, before all this."

"I know what you are," Anya tells Thea, meaningfully. She may have wanted to put the knife through Morlun's chest, perhaps more than anyone who was there.

But she's pretty sure she couldn't have done it.

"I just don't want to see these four years in hell do something to you. Something you don't see coming. I know you're more than a handy healer, but at least you know when it's time to do the dirty work, and when it's not."

There is a slight shift in Thea's expression, brows very so lightly canted upwards as her eyelids lower just a touch. What had been a mildly open and friendly expression - is no more. Now there's all but chill radiating from the biokinetic. "You've seen me in action, once. I just got the final blow, because others wouldn't have been able to do it, and others shouldn't have had to do it. Killing the monster is not new to me."

"I spent four years without good food, comfort, or anywhere to go out and dance. The holidays are an accepted time of indulging oneself. So I am allowing myself to indulge, to make up for four years. Four years of hell just honed me, Anya. I may be indulging and adjusting in a curious way, but I'll be okay. It's not the first time I've had to recalibrate."

Anya watches, but she's not frightened by the chill that comes from the woman. In some ways, it's a welcome change, an understanding that reality can be harsh, and sometimes that's okay.

"Then let's go indulge," she says, and packs the flask away. Then, with a wicked grin, she turns and leads the way back into the club.

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