52_dropoff: (Captain Atom t-shirt)
[personal profile] 52_dropoff
As the cool of the morning fades, Charlie prepares the exercise mats and other equipment near the lake. He's looking forward to seeing Natalie, but he's also just a bit preoccupied. Which means that he best sit on one of those mats and meditate till she arrives.

Date: 2008-09-08 01:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
Natalie approaches after a while, dressed in a tank top and running shorts. She sits beside him, and says quietly, "Hey, Charlie."

Date: 2008-09-08 01:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
He opens his eyes, totally alert, and smiles. "Good morning, Natalie."

Date: 2008-09-08 01:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
"What's going on?" she asks, smiling at him. "It's a beautiful morning."

Date: 2008-09-08 01:48 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
"It is indeed." He remains seated. "As for what's going on...

"Do you want me to tell you what's going before we exercise, or after." He tries to smile cryptically.

Date: 2008-09-08 01:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
"Probably best to do it now," she says, sounding a bit worried.

Date: 2008-09-08 01:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
"Have I told you about Gordon Freeman?" As he sits, he begins to stretch, and assumes Natalie will get the hint.

Date: 2008-09-08 01:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
She does, and begins to follow his lead.

"Is that the guy you're going to war for?" she asks, looking over at him.

Date: 2008-09-08 02:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
"Yes and no. That was the guy whose friend I was interested in helping. The friend didn't need help. But...

"Let's say that there are too many worlds where there are wars, and some of them do need volunteers." Funny that he really cares what she thinks about his choice. He usually just does what he needs to without anyone's approval.

Date: 2008-09-08 02:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
"So... are you asking me or telling me? You're a superhero. You do what you've got to." She gives him a funny little smile, head tilted.

She'd be devastated if he died (again), of course, but... superheroes fight crime. It's what they do.

Date: 2008-09-08 02:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
"I'm telling you but...I just didn't feel right not letting you know. It's that kind of funny?" He gets to his feet and continues stretching.

Date: 2008-09-08 02:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
She gives a small smile. "Not really," she says, standing. She then reaches over and touches her toes.

Date: 2008-09-08 02:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
"And you aren't worried?" He does a few stretches that Natalie might not be able to duplicate, since they seem to imply Charlie's legs are rubber.

Date: 2008-09-08 02:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
She blinks and watches, arms crossed. "Of course I'm worried, Charlie. But you do know how to take care of yourself. I can't tell you not to go."

It isn't like they're dating or anything.

Date: 2008-09-08 02:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
"No, you can't." He's just glad she isn't suggesting she come, too. "But it's nice to know that someone's worried. Besides me, that is.

"It's going to be...war. With guns and weapons I've never seen and aliens. All the things I was lucky enough never to face at home. I didn't expect to find them after I died, but I guess it's fate."

Date: 2008-09-08 02:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
"Perhaps," she agrees. "I don't know if I believe in fate, but that could be true."

And to be honest, the only reason she's not asking to tag along is because she knows she isn't well-trained enough yet.

"Can you tell me more?"

Date: 2008-09-08 02:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
"Of course. Care to hear it over jogging?" Best to get started.

Date: 2008-09-08 02:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
"That sounds good," she says, and begins to run at a gentle pace. "So, what's the story?"

Date: 2008-09-08 02:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
"Gordon's world was taken over by aliens at the start of the 21st century. Gordon, in fact, was there when the first wave arrived. And then somehow got kicked ahead in time, to find that the aliens were in total control."

Date: 2008-09-08 03:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
"That's weird," she says, looking over at him. "Aliens? Time travel?"

Natalie's still adjusting to Milliways, it seems.

Date: 2008-09-08 03:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
"I think I've mentioned things like that are almost routine for my world. But we've always managed to stop the aliens before they took over. Gordon's world had no such luck, and humanity has suffered for 20 years.

"But he's part of the resistance. And we're going to help." There is resolve in Charlie's voice as they begin to round the lake.

Date: 2008-09-08 03:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
She keeps up with him easily. "Who all is "we"?" she asks.

Date: 2008-09-08 03:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
"A small army there, lead by Gordon and a woman named Alyx Vance, and about a dozen people from here. Including someone else I'm training, a young woman who will eventually be one of my world's best heroes, and the single most taciturn young woman I've ever met.

"My chance to finally be part of a super-hero team," he says with ironic intent.

Date: 2008-09-08 03:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
She shakes her head. "That's amazing, Charlie."

She tries to tamp down the flare of jealousy in her chest. He's training another woman?

Date: 2008-09-08 04:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 52-dropoff.livejournal.com
"It might be. Assuming that I can handle a gun, that Dinah doesn't get overwhelmed, that Valerie has is as good as student as she thinks she is, and that X...no, X seems to know what she's doing." Does he quite notice that Natalie seemed a little perturbed? No.

Date: 2008-09-08 04:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] frustrated-asst.livejournal.com
She manages a crooked half-smile. "You're quite the ladies' man, Charlie."

Hopefully, she keeps that edge of bitterness out of her voice. She's not sure why she's jealous, but.. she is. And it's confusing.

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