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Quinn Abernathy

June 09, 2018

"Gideon, don't st-"

Don't be a martyr now...

Gideon knows how to get her good, and it is times like these that the differences between them become completely clear. This hadn't been her choice. Quinn never made this happen, and she had hoped, upon getting confirmation of this little life, he might finally want to run away from the Flock. But he didn't and it had left her feeling guilty.

Instead, they ended up in California, with a cult of their own making.

If her father could see her now...

There's no stopping him. He's mad, and on a role, and the only thing Quinn can do is ride the wave while desperately trying to contain herself. And she does pretty well. Quinn is doing great, despite the obvious rage building up within.

Until that one, last sentence.

After all, it's not going to grow up even remembering my face.

Her head turns fast, wide eyes landing on Gideon as silence consumes them both. Those hot tears that had been held back are slowly released, and the first thing that escapes her is a whisper. "What are you talking about? What... what the f-ck are you talking about?"

This is a sore subject, and he knows it. It is something they have touched on once before, and Quinn shut it down quickly. But, there is something different about this. He seems so... sure.

Before she can stop herself, the heel of her palm meets the dashboard angrily before she leans forward and holds her head in her hands. "Pull over. Right now. Stop the car."

She hasn't even waited before she has started to angrily pull off her seatbelt, struggling against the shaking of her hands.
July 13, 2018 09:41 pm

Gideon Abernathy

A simple slip of the tongue.

His grip on the steering wheel tightens, his knuckles white against the strain. They’d been arguing about the kid and it’s - in Gideon’s eyes - unnecessary doctor’s appointments. One to find out the sex? Couldn’t they just wait until it was here?

Now, he can’t look at her. He can practically feel the hot emotion rolling off her in waves, but he can’t drag his gaze over to her, even amidst her line of questioning. He won’t respond; instead, he merely does as he’s bid and pulls the car over. Quinn nearly launches herself out of the vehicle, but he won’t follow suit right away. No, he remains, grip still vice-like on the wheel, staring ahead, avoiding the conversation he never wanted to have.

In that moment, his mind has stopped altogether. Emotion is not his strong suit, as he’s never been able to truly process such things. While the anger seems to have ebbed, he’s left with something much harsher to deal with.

Regret; guilt; a deep-seated loneliness.

Loss.

Finally, like a zombie, he reconvenes with her. Against the hood of the car, he leans and folds his arms over his chest, still unable to meet her gaze. The silence drags for a moment, creating a chasm between them that’s hard to bridge. When he does breach the quiet, his voice is cold and calculated.

“I told you from the get go, I don’t likely have much time here. What’s surprising to you?”
July 14, 2018 08:56 am

Quinn Abernathy

She doesn't much calm down once outside the car. Quinn doesn't even bother to close the door behind her, and once out, she still feels as though she is suffocating. Deep breathing gives her no relief, finding it strangled as she stares out into nothing. She doesn't even hear him exit the car.

Every time Gideon's end comes up, it upsets her. Though barely over a year since they were reunited, and even less since their relationship evolved from friendship to more, Quinn is attached to Gideon in the most unhealthy of ways.

She loves him. Fiercely.

"I'm not stupid, Gideon..." Turning to face the man, she swallows. "You told me you were compromised. We left New Orleans for a reason. This has not come up since then, and now, here we are."

Quinn wishes she were stupid. She wishes she were naive and unaware of the nuances of the world and her husband. More than anything, she would love to have never been given his thoughts on his lifespan, so that she could live each and every day without waking up in the morning with that nagging fear that it might be his last. Blissful ignorance, to the very end.

Once more, that violent feeling of utter helplessness returns.

Slowly, she approaches, eyes wild, stomach in knots, and heart in her throat. Once more, the Madames words echo in her mind, threatening to make her sick. "So, what is it? The police? The feds? Did your father do something? Because if someone is hunting you, then we need to go. Alone."

It would be easy to get away. She knows it. Excuses could be made. Sam would easily follow them, go wherever they did, and they could go completely off the radar for the rest of their lives. They could cross borders, and truly escape. Quinn would do whatever it takes.

And he knows it.
July 14, 2018 09:50 am

Gideon Abernathy

Those blackened hues still won’t find her, and his hands come down on the hood only for his nails to dig into the paint in an attempt to steady himself. Every part of him is rejecting the idea of discussing what happened at the commune. He just doesn’t have it in him.

“There’s no one hunting me. Not...actively. The person that had a file on me is dead. I just had to cover my tracks one last time.” He finally forces his eyes to her face, though he won’t meet her gaze head on.

“I’m going to die young, Quinn. There’s nothing I can do about that, and I’ve always been honest with you. I found us a home. I found you a safe place to start over with your kid.” He notices the mishap, but he doesn’t correct it. He’s never considered the kid his; it’s always been Quinn’s baby.

“You can leave the cult anytime,” he offers quietly, knowing the reaction it would garner. “I just want you to be safe, even if it’s not with me.”

You’ve never been safe with me. It’s a dark thought, but one he doesn’t voice.
July 14, 2018 11:01 am

Quinn Abernathy

Boom.

If this is what it feels like to be punched in the gut, Quinn never wants to know the pain again. Someone had a file on him. Somewhere out there, is information on him. There's really only one thing she can do, and that is panic, and plead.

"Where.. where is the file? What's in the file? What do you mean, not actively? It's still out there? Just tell me where it is, and we'll figure it out."

But before the question is answered, he is pushing on, telling her things he knows she doesn't want to hear and isn't willing to accept. And now, she is mad all over again. "Stop it. Stop saying that."

Her hands push outward slightly into the air, as if physically rejecting his notice on life itself. "You.. you have built us three homes, Gideon. Three. And -we- are going to raise -our- child, and our child -will- know you. When are you..?"

Trailing off, she swipes at her cheeks and crosses her arms. It doesn't last long, as one hand clutches at her heart. And now, she bargains, through quick breaths and far too many emotions.

"We.. we're going to figure this out, okay? I'll sell my Dad's house. And the truck. And... we can use the money to... to.. I don't know.. hire someone to get rid of the file. And um... we can take it from there. We can figure it out."

Pulling her phone from the pocket of her skirt, she fumbles to unlock it. Finding some semblance of hope to cling to, Quinn would hold on for dear life. The list has already been drawn up in her head.

Find a realtor.
Call the bank.
Hire cleaners.
Hire handyman.
Research private investigators.
Go from there.

"We can fix this."
July 14, 2018 11:10 am

Gideon Abernathy

A frown pulls at his features, only deepening when she pulls out her phone frantically. Easily, but as gently as possible, he wrests the phone from her grasp and tosses it through the open window of the car. Fingers reach up to pinch the bridge of his nose to fend off the hint of a headache that threatened him.

“There’s no getting the file back.” It’s true; it isn’t as if he could just ask Eiji for the only evidence that might incriminate him. It had never been that simple. “It’s in safe hands,” he offers feebly, but even he knows it’s a tentative assumption.

“You can’t sell your father’s house,” he continues, punctuating it with a shake of his head, “I need to know there’s a safe place for you when I —“ Waving a hand in the air, he doesn’t complete the thought for the sake of her sanity.

A defensive stance is taken as he considers what to say to make this livable. “I thought we were on the same page.” There’s a dark chuckle in his voice, though it hints at no form of humor.

“You know I’m not a good person, right?” His tone is quiet, but it tells of a certain urgency, a need for her to understand. “I know you love me regardless, Quinn, I know, and I love you for that, but... You do realize there will always be people after me? That the kid in your stomach has a better chance at life without me, yes? Without my name, without my past haunting it forever... This was always my fate, and you can’t change that because we were irresponsible.”
July 14, 2018 12:55 pm

Quinn Abernathy

"Gideon!"

It's all she can get out as he pulls the phone from her grasp, and she can feel the panic rise far more quickly. Her hands rise, covering her face before delicate fingers push back into her hair. This isn't okay. None of this is okay. But then, he makes the mistake of offering her any sort of hope.

And he quickly takes it away.

He knows how she is. Gideon has never been left without question that if there is one thing she clings to every day, it is this. Hope for a good, better everything. Hope in the good of humanity. Hope for a full life. It is smarter to keep that from her, in reality.

"We were never on the same page... not where you are concerned. Not on this."

Shaking her head, her arms fall to cross. Chewing at her lip, she stares at him through watery clouds. "This child has a better chance with you. You think I'm not going to tell them about you? You think I'm not going to tell them all you did for me, what you mean to me? No. Mm. I won't need to. You're not going anywhere. This isn't irresponsible. This is us."

Pausing, she bows her head. "I don't want to lose you, Giddy. I can't lose you. You're home." There is no guilt, nor shame, as she makes her final pleas. There would be no coming around on this, though Quinn would only be driven to spend more time with him than she already does.

"You said it's in safe hands. Who has it? Who is it that I am supposed to trust with your life?"
July 14, 2018 01:06 pm

Gideon Abernathy

"You can tell it whatever you want, Quinn." Exasperation is evident in his tone, as is the lilt of that crazed humor. "You can tell it I was the greatest thing that ever happened, that doesn't make it true. Because I can guarantee you what you're not going to do is tell it the truth." Quinn had always seen him through her special pair of rose-tinted shades; it's the same glasses that obscure her vision when she speaks of her ex-husband as well. It will forever be a source of contention between them, but there's no getting her to see reason.

As he turns away from her, he grimaces. He is loathe to rehash this wound, but it isn't as if he hadn't tried to prepare her for it from the get. When it comes to who and what he is, Gideon isn't a martyr, nor is he a fool. He's always walked a tightrope that could send him careening into the abyss at any moment; it's part of what made his life so...livable.

Perhaps he should've listened to his gut back at Valar Morghulis.

But he hadn't, and he is still faced with the predicament of a distraught, pregnant wife who only grows more hysterical by the second.

"I can't tell you." It's a whisper, as he knows what comes next. "It would put you in danger." The lie. Honestly, he's unsure of how Eiji feels about Quinn, now knowing what he knows, but it can't be good. In the best light, she is an accomplice, letting him get away with his fvcked up antics and activities. In the worst, she is a leader of a cult.

Still, he hesitates; not telling her could put her in more danger, should Eiji target the cult after his death. Which, if Gideon knows him, he will.

And there's the fact that Quinn is his friend, too.

What comes next is perplexing, even to the psychopath.

Reaching up, a hand grazes his cheek, feeling the wet trail of tears that he hadn't even noticed fell. His blackened soul aches for the camaraderie that he'd lost, the Asian having left a bigger mark on him than the scar they now shared. His balance is gone, and he feels uncountered and unstable. He'd tried to fill the void with alcohol and weed, where ever he could find some - and in California, it is plentiful - but it hadn't even touched his emptiness. Even then, he marvels at the notion, as he hadn't even ached for Mira in such a way.

At last, he can finally understand what Quinn must be feeling, in light of his impending death.

"It was Eiji."
July 14, 2018 01:49 pm

Quinn Abernathy

Up until a certain point, Quinn felt as if a knife had been thrust, steady and true, to pierce her heart. It is new, at least where Gideon is concerned. But this breaking sensation is far from new. She’d felt it more than once in her life, but had never dreamed this man would be the one wielding the blade. So, eyes cast upon the ground, she says nothing.

What would she tell their child? That their father saved her? That he protected her fiercely? That he made her feel whole when all hope had been lost? That she loved him with every fiber of her being? He did, and she did. How could she delve into the things that would only confuse him? How could she even begin?

Your father was my hero. He endured. He was true to himself. He was raised in a cult, and did terrible, unspeakable things... but even in darkness there is bright light, and I found it, and love him for it.

Even that isn’t enough.

Her head bows, and Quinn desperately wishes she hadn’t been so insistent. She wishes she hadn’t argued. That she had just respected his wishes and let it well enough alone. They wouldn’t be here right now if she had just given him that much. Stubborn, selfish, persistent... the list goes on, and Quinn fits every bill.

‘It would put you in danger.’

Everything in mind, she remains quiet. Quinn doesn’t agree. Not even a little bit. She isn’t foolish enough to believe that her husband's danger isn’t her own. This road he travels, they travel together. His end would likely be her own, whether she chose it or not. And she would gladly follow him, if it came to that end, if only for the belief that she would see him again in whatever the next life brought them. A little wiser, a little different, but still perfectly woven together.

‘It was Eiji.’

Her brows press together, and confusion is easily written all over her face as the words permeate. Eiji. She hadn’t seen Eiji in almost a year. He is her friend, his best friend. He is light, and good, and true. He has never come to the commune, and she would never bring it up. Quinn has always assumed it to be an unspoken rule, and left it be.

It was Eiji. Was. A shuddering breath is sucked in as she prepares for the worst, and the heartbroken whisper that escapes is hoarse and barely audible.

“I don’t understand...”
July 14, 2018 02:40 pm

Gideon Abernathy

Here, he is presented with the crushing weight of explaining the situation - something he'd never wanted to do. Giving voice to it made it all the more real.

"Ota is dead. I don't know how. But he had a file he'd meticulously put together on me, I don't know why. I don't even know how he found half the sh-t out. Eiji found that file, and he found that my last known location was with the cult. I don't think I ever told you this, but the cult almost killed us a while ago, before I'd ever really met you. So, despite everything he read, despite everything Ota had put together on me, he thought that I was in danger here, and he came to save me."

He blinks, fighting back the urge to wave it all away and pretend like nothing is wrong. Gideon knows that, while Eiji feigned heroics in the situation, that he was no fool, and he was merely looking for comfort from a familiar face. And perhaps, the chance to talk him down from such a life. Part of him wonders what would've happened if John hadn't interfered.

"My father's cronies got to him first, and they interrogated him. There's something in him that's broken, Quinn. He wasn't himself. He ripped Dan's fvcking throat out with his teeth." A shiver rolls up his spine, not at the sight - he'd seen much worse - but at the fact that he couldn't be what Eiji needed in that moment. In fact, he was the exact opposite.

“He put this scar on my face," he continues, his finger idly tracing the raised skin on his cheek, "and told me that when we meet again, he will kill me."

At this point in the confession, he turns to his wife, his mouth pressed into a thin line as he gives her an imploring look.

"I won't stop him. I can't."
July 14, 2018 03:03 pm

Quinn Abernathy

This is arguably the rawest, most truthful time of their lives. Quinn listens, quieting the panic of her heart and mind the best she can, if only to better understand him. To truly hear him, and comprehend everything.

Ota is dead, and while she never knew the man, she knew he meant a great deal to their own. Through it all, Quinn’s heart spares a moment for Eiji, and she remains still through the rest. All that she learns, all that he says, easily falls into place. The puzzle she has never wanted or bothered to work out is coming together quickly, and it is gruesome. Yet... she understands. Ota loved Eiji, and it only makes sense that he would want to keep him safe.

It’s the last of it that catches her off guard. Eiji’s promise, how feral and unlike himself he had become, so far from the gentle man she knew. And, when Gideon would face her once more, that look upon his face as if begging her to understand and accept, she would know this is it. Her husband would not fight back, and there is little that could be done about it. As much as she loves him, as much as he loves her, there is a bond that she would never be able to touch between the two men.

That knife is twisted, and her heart simply shatters.

“Gid... Gideon...” The fear that washes over her like a tidal wave is icy, at best. It’s a new one that she’s never encountered, that of the unknown. Before her stands a man with a clock that ticks away the seconds, and there is no way of telling how many are left. There would be no talking him out of this, and no running away. Not this time.

Slow steps are taken forward, feet carrying her to Gideon as she comes to realize that every minute is their last. Meeting his gaze, Quinn would ask her final and only question. “There’s no talking to him now...? Now that there’s no John, and no one to interfere?”

Please, please, please say there is that chance.
July 14, 2018 03:31 pm

Gideon Abernathy

Before she even finishes asking the question, he is shaking his head in response. "I can't change who I am, I can't change what I've done." It is selfish, he knows; they have a baby on the way, and how callous, to leave Quinn here to deal with all of his aftermath. But Gideon is nothing if not a proud narcissist, and he knows and understands that for people like Eiji to exist, people like himself have to counter them.

He is a necessary evil.

"Eiji is a good man guided by a cruel fate. Where I get to follow my nature and act upon my own will, he has to set his aside for the sake of the greater good. And this time, against me, he couldn't. In his eyes, I saw more than just the death of his closest friend." Gideon trails off, lost in thought, as he thinks back on that fateful night. It was as if he'd seen more than just his run-of-the-mill spirits and demons; it was almost as if he'd died and come back to life.

"There is still hope for you, though, for that child. You can still get out, while there's still time." He dons an apologetic smile, knowing that she would only take offense to such a suggestion, but he has to offer it nonetheless. "I don't know how soon he will ready himself, or if this is a battle he'll choose not to fight." It's an honest sentiment, but even then, Gideon knows better. Eiji never left a job unfinished, no matter how long it took him to get back to it. At the time, he merely wasn't ready.

With a frown, he pulls her into a hard embrace as she collapses within herself. In mere moments, he's crushed her entire world, and there's a nagging feeling of regret at telling her at all. Quinn will dwell, and it will always be looming in the back of her mind, despite his warnings from so early on. "People like me don't last long in such a world. And isn't that, objectively, a good thing?"
July 14, 2018 03:52 pm

Quinn Abernathy

“We aren’t going anywhere,” Once again, the answer is resolute. If he couldn’t try, neither could she. Quinn wants, more than anything, for Gideon to meet his child and know that he helped create something beautiful and perfect. In reality, he already has done as much, simply by loving her and accepting her love for him.

So, when he pulls her shaking form into his and holds her tightly, Quinn almost feels as if he is holding all those broken pieces of her together. Gideon is the glue that makes her whole, and without him, she would surely fall apart. Slim arms wrap around him, holding tightly to him despite the protest her belly would present, and her tear covered face would find its home in that perfect space between his shoulder and neck. It is warm, and safe, and gives her solace.

At his question, she shakes her head gently. So many would believe that. They would believe that a killer like her husband is soulless and cruel. They would watch their documentaries and make their harsh opinions and be unapologetic in their judgment. They would fail to see the humanity in him. But one thing remains true, and has since the very beginning.

“You’ll always be my Giddy.”

It was the promise she made from the start of this life they forged, and a promise that would stand true now and forever.

Quinn understands completely, what he believes. Gideon doesn’t see himself the way she does, and just once, she wants him to know what it is to love him so fiercely. Deep breaths are taken, slow and deliberate as she clears her mind and melts into the man. Once upon a time, he felt the love his mother had for him. But now, he would know the love of his wife in its truest form.

The world would melt away, and he would see it through fresh eyes. Her world. Him. The days spent in bed, simply loving each other. The night he asked her to marry him, and when she saw him for the very first time the next day at an altar he had built just for them. Valentine’s Day, when he gifted her the ring he had made with his own two hands. It is a gift that spoke so much to her, more than simple words.

The first time they saw their baby on the screen, a tiny little blip that flickered with life. She had turned her attention to him, and while a fierce love for the life the created began to form, her own for Gideon had swelled at an unnatural rate.

When the world would reappear around them, Quinn would choke back a sob and hold to him all the more tightly.

“You are so much more than you know, Gideon. I just.. please understand..”
July 14, 2018 04:32 pm

Gideon Abernathy

A picture reel of memories plays before him, only he sees them through an entirely different perspective. From -her- perspective. Gideon fails to find the good in him, as there isn't much there to be found, but when it comes to Quinn... He is frail and soft.

Their memories flood his mind's eye, and he watches himself experience all the things they've done together in the past few months. It amazes him how stoic he is, considering how much his mind swam and coursed and pitched. When it comes to his wife, the only person that had ever really seen his vulnerable side, it's hard to fathom what she thinks when she looks at him. Yet, here and now, more than she's ever been able to express, he feels the unconditional love and unwavering loyalty. It's overwhelming, to say the least.

He only pulls her closer as the showcase comes to an end, burying his face in her hair. Her words procure a small, sad smile from him, and he offers a strange shrug, made all the more difficult by their embrace. "You are the only good thing about me, Quinn. You're the only thing I've ever done moderately right, and even then..." Again, he trails off. They have differing opinions on his treatment of her, and nothing either one says will change the others' mind.

It seems like an eternity later when he finally pulls away and rubs at the back of his neck. "Suffice it to say, I think we've missed the appointment. You should probably call and reschedule, maybe they'll take you a little later?"
July 14, 2018 04:41 pm

Quinn Abernathy

There wouldn't be any fixing this, as there is nothing that can be fixed. But, what can be done, is done. Even as he questions his decision when it comes to her, she simply remains. Quinn knows it was right. She knows that they did the right thing in being as selfish as they are, and coming together as they did. So, she stays, safely tucked into him for a blissful forever until he pulls away.

Eyes puffy, she glances up at him and nods. It would be one phone call, laced with a lie of car trouble, and three hours of sheer existence before they would arrive.

In the waiting room, her head would rest upon his shoulder and her fingers entwined with his. There is a heavy feeling in her heart, and she finds herself trying to make sense of what is right in the world. There has to be a way.. there has to be. Maybe if she just talked to Eiji....

"Harper? Quinn Harper?"

It takes her a moment to come to the present, and she lifts her head to look at the woman before standing and walking forward with Gideon, quietly correcting the woman on her name. It bothers her with the past few hours still fresh in her mind, as if the world is already trying to erase them.

Once in a room, Quinn would patiently allow her vitals to be taken before cold jelly would be globbed upon her belly and, once more, they would see and hear their creation. And then, the question comes.

A moment of silence passes in the room, and Quinn would glance at Gideon before looking up at the doctor and making her request. After more bloodtests, and more questions, they would leave with an envelope. The contents holding the answer to the one thing she'd wanted to know.

At home, she would give that envelope to Gideon. Quietly, their day in mind, she makes the decision to allow him to make the choice, for them both. "It's up to you, Giddy. I didn't peek."
July 14, 2018 04:58 pm
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