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Finished Reminisce by the Roses

Discussion in 'City Life' started by Romi, May 11, 2019.

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  1. Romi
    Romi

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    Frederick hadn't been many places. He didn't have free reign, and he couldn't say he was at liberty. But he had some amount of freedom, and he opted to get to Morning Glory a few minutes early. He bought himself coffee, considered the food options, and then decided it was proabbly better to wait.

    He'd lost weight in the time he'd spent in the islets. Not from lack of food, but more from simple stress. There were a lot of complications. A lot of things he had to deal with. He hadn't had a job before he'd been arrested, but he'd made good headway there as he'd helped organize the evacuees.

    He'd thought it would transition into a job with the ministry. He'd been wrong.

    His old apartment had been taken over by someone else, and he'd been moved. Probably better. A new place. A new start. He just had to get things going again.
     
  2. Zora
    Zora

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    Zoraida arrived at the cafe a few minutes before two o'clock in jeans and a sweatshirt. She looked as tired and defeated as she felt, having passed at various moments in the last week or so through the five stages of grief, denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.

    However, as the doctor that Celeste had brought in to talk to her, had told her - none of these feelings would come in order, nor would they stay for very long at first, and all she could do is have patience with herself - which was honestly not an easy thing to do.

    Some days, for instance, she'd easily go from quiet acceptance to anger and depression to bargaining and back to tears of despair. In fact, she had long passed denial and her faith was all but gone. All that was left some days were self-loathing and just a clear sense of loss and self-blame. To boot, sleep was not her friend and seem to evade her constantly making everything ten times worse than it already was.

    Upon seeing Frederick, Zora stopped for a moment. He had lost some weight, and quite frankly looked a bit stressed. She had no idea if it were from grief, or from the months in prison or quite simply a combination of everything.

    "Mr. Crawford," Zora said as she sat down at the table, "Thank you for coming," she added as she set her pocketbook on the table.

    "And I just wanted to say, I am very sorry for your loss. I know you weren't that close, but, well, he was your son," she said sadly, as her thoughts went to Jeremiah at that moment, and knowing that if the tables had been reversed somehow - if she were estranged from her son, she knew that it would not matter, she'd still feel his loss.
     
  3. Romi
    Romi

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    Zora did not look good. She looked as if she'd barely slept a wink, and Freddie immediately frowned, moving as if to stand before second guessing himself and sitting back down.

    "No, I should be thanking you for coming. Taking your time out of a busy schedule is bad enough, but in times like these, even more so." The fact that she hadn't slept was plain as day, and he suspected she'd been crying too. Saying 'you look awful' might have been true, but it still sounded awful, and she didn't need any more negativity dumped on her. No doubt she was entirely self aware of how she looked.

    "I wish we'd been closer," he said quietly, his eyes drifting down, fixing on the mug of coffee he'd bought himself before he reached out, taking it in his hands just to feel the warmth. "And now that chance is gone."

    There wasn't going to be another chance, and that weighed heavy on Crawford's face from the moment he'd said it.

    "I think the worst part was not knowing. I was happily counting down the days with no idea. Oblivious to what had happened."
     
  4. Zora
    Zora

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    Zora just nodded but did not comment. Every day seemed to be a bad day, work helped, but not enough to keep her grounded and focused. And quite truthfully, she was glad that Frederick had reached out. Her own family, while supportive and understanding, had never been huge fans of Broen, and the fact he had done what he had done had only served to add a layer (perhaps imagined) of disapproval of her grief.

    In fact, Zora often felt that she could see it when she spoke to her aunt or her grandfather, and while she understood how they felt, she didn't have the mental stamina to deal and compartmentalize it either; thus leading only to more stress and a feeling of not quite being understood and simply being pitied and humored.

    "I understand," Zora started as a waiter appeared and took her order for a cup of chamomile tea with honey. "We always think we have time."

    "I thought when he came back, we'd have time to discuss things, work out our differences maybe, but, well, that didn't happen," she said quietly as she fiddled absentmindedly with the leather strap on her purse.

    "Can I ask how you found out?" she asked Frederick just as her tea appeared moments later, probably thanks to magic of some kind.
     
  5. Romi
    Romi

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    "That's the nature of humanity, I think. Thinking you have all the time in the world until someone slaps you in the face and tell you that you don't. That your world is ending. That your loved ones are gone. That you only have a few months. It's a part of humanity, I think. To never be able to really understand the time they have left."

    He wondered for a moment what kind of world it would be if everyone knew their fated time.

    When she asked how he found out, he shook his head. "When I was being released. One of the men mentioned it. I think they all thought I knew, because they certainly did. He'd have been my next of kin, after all."

    The only person on the island he had any real connection to.

    "As far as I knew at that point, he was still gone. Left, like you told me. And then I found out he was really gone. It was... a shock."

    He made himself drink from his coffee, trying not to fidget.
     
  6. Zora
    Zora

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    "That is very true," Zora agreed as she slowly stirred her tea. "I imagine if we were really aware of the time we had left, there'd either be total chaos of those needing to desperately live out their last moments to the fullest and those who would be paralyzed by fear... " she mused, deliberately not thinking about the third group that would probably kill themselves before letting fate decide their paths... the fleeting idea hit a little to close to home, and she could easily see Broen having been in that last category.

    Zora grimaced in quiet but obvious dismay at the fact that Broen's father had not been made aware of his son's recent passing, and probably it being due to an administrative error or some sort of miscommunication.

    "Broen supposedly returned shortly after I visited you, a few weeks, maybe a month after I think," she told him, not quite sure of the timeline anymore since she had heard of Broen's return through Celeste, and her aunt had had no real idea how long, before re-enrolling, he had been back on the island.

    "I really don't know though. It was my aunt who told me she had seen his name on class schedules, and that was the first time, I knew that he was even back," she told him as she wrapped her hands tightly around the cup.

    "So... what are your plans now that you are out?" Zora asked interestedly, needing to talk about something different for a bit. She could feel that sense of sadness swelling again at knowing she had been deliberately ignored by Broen, that he had been back for a good while, and had not even bothered to call or even just text her to let her know he was back. The thought twisted her stomach, made her heartache, and once again, she felt like crying.
     
  7. Romi
    Romi

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    Frederick frowned, setting his mug down and watching Zora closely. The entire order of events was at times difficult for him to follow, knowing only a few pieces here and there. Broen's departure from the island. His apparent return. And now his death.

    "And he didn't even have the decency to come and speak to you after abandoning you like that...?"

    He was frowning, and he wasn't going to stop frowning any time soon. But he could sense the obvious desire for a subject change, and he was more than willing to oblige. He didn't want to see her cry right there in public. No in front of him. Not in front of strangers she didn't even know.

    "I'm exploring my options," he said after a moment's consideration. "My degree isn't exactly valid with no proof of it's existence. I don't have any references. It's hard finding a job that isn't going to just be a menial part time job. Everyone assumes you've gone to the school, but the idea of going back to get a degree I don't actually need is... a strain."
     
  8. Zora
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    "No," was all Zora murmured along with a slow sad shake of her head at Frederick's question. His son had not visited her, and she could only guess why he had not contacted her earlier. Hate, and despising her, were becoming the top reasons in her mind. Although, she kept that thought to herself. Why else would he have disappeared like he had, and done what he has done in the end? He must have hated her something horrible to chose death over life.

    Shaking these overwhelming negative thoughts as they crept up from her mind, Zora focused her attention fully on Frederick as he spoke.

    "That's .. well, it's something I'd never considered that before," she told him truthfully, grateful for the change of topic. Zora had never thought about that side of people arriving on the island from other dimensions. "Is there not a course that you can take to prove your skills? I know many countries beyond the veil, they have short courses to validate your titles and knowledge," she explained as she took a sip of her tea.
     
  9. Romi
    Romi

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    "There is," he says. "They'll test you for a degree and give you the qualifications. But my own degree won't get me many places, since everyone expects references. For most of the people from Halcyon, the island does a good job helping them convert over. A mechanic gets pointed towards some auto shops to work at. A doctor goes through some refresher courses and gets to work. But some jobs--those of us who worked in the hero industry--have no parallel. And my job..."

    He paused a moment, then smiled at her.

    "Well, I think it might be asking too much. Getting a job with one of the ministers is a possibility, but considering how little I know about the island..."

    He let out a sigh, his smile faltering.

    "I have plans, but jumping in headfirst is too much. My degree--law--doesn't help but when all the laws are different, so I'm thinking of leaving more heavily into my minor. Finding a business related position. Establishing myself in the community first. It seems more plausible. Would let me get out of the hole in the wall they give to new arrivals."

    The apartment he was staying in was not flattering.
     
  10. Zora
    Zora

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    "That's right, I think you did mention your business training the last time we met," Zora mused thoughtfully as what he was mentioning to her rang a bell. She had momentarily forgotten that they had spoken about business when she had last seen him.

    "Have you ever thought about maybe being a consultant of some sort?" she asked him, feeling a little safer emotionally talking about work. She was sure there wasn't too much had could trigger her grief when chatting about the business side of her life - or so she hoped.

    "I am sure you'd be quite good at it," she added. "You are quite knowledgable, well-rounded as it were, and you seem to connect well with people, or at least that is my perception of you," she said as she put her cup down on its saucer and regarded him quietly.
     


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