|Isobel Brandt \\ Persephone (praxidike) wrote in paxletalelogs,|
@ 2017-10-26 07:32:00
|Entry tags:||hades, persephone|
i came here by day, but i left here in darkness
Who: Obed, Isobel, & Bryan [NPC].
What: A chapter is brought to a close.
Where: A nameless warehouse on the waterfront.
When: A few days following this.
Warning: R for torture and mutilation.
Isobel turned the spade in her hand to delicately ring aeration holes around a newly planted bud; the ENC had replanted a tree grove to start helping repopulate an edge of the Santa Rosa fires, leaving her with the opportunity to spread some flora growth over the empty beds. Her phone was in her pocket, silent and yet as heavy as a stone. She'd picked up more shifts in an effort to clear her head, but the thought of what she'd condoned was never far from her mind.
Sitting back on her heels, she passed the back of one hand over her forehead, smearing dirt. Her phone buzzed, and she froze, monetarily considering ignoring it. But the need to know, to be done with all of this pushed her to her feet and had her fish her phone out of her pocket with thumb and forefinger. A swipe lit up the black screen, showing Obed's name with a heart emoji next to it, followed by a short message.
She felt her heart skip a beat in her chest; her hands shook. What struck her most was how not unnatural this all seemed; how not perturbed she was by the fact that the man she intended to marry was helping her, even encouraging her, to complete this odious task. Instead, she was immensely grateful for him and focused on that instead of what was to come. She hit the dial button next to his name on the message screen and put the phone to her ear. Obed picked up on the first ring, sounding only a little out of breath.
"I hope I'm not interrupting," he said. "But we're almost there, and I didn't want to keep you waiting. Maybe fifteen more minutes." A small, muffled cry carried over the phone. Obed paid it no mind. "How is the planting going?"
Isobel found herself stifling a laugh at his nonchalant tone; that in itself made the twang of disapproval sound off in the back of her head. Shouldn't she be concerned that the man she was in love with had zero problem with killing someone?
"It's...going." She paused, trying to think of how to frame her question. "How... How is this so easy for you?" Before he had a chance to reply, a familiar yip sounded off from the corner of the vehicle. Isobel's eyes widened.
"Obed, why is Hanni in the car?!"
"Well you're working," he said, as though this response was the most natural, understandable thing in the world. "And he really didn't want to be left alone. He's been a great help. Very good for my morale." Obed chuckled. There was only the slightest hint of stress in the sound. Then the laughter was gone as quickly as it had come, and his tone was as serious as it had ever been.
"This is easy for me because it has to be done," he said. "You should see him, Isobel. Even now he's just... angry. No regret, no remorse, nothing at all. Trust me: This will not stop if we don't make it stop, ourselves."
Isobel sighed, her eyes slipping closed. A hand came up to pinch the bridge of her nose, moreso at the additional complication of their dog than honestly at the whole situation itself.
"I know." She opened her eyes, letting her gaze fall on the plants around her. "It's the same place that we discussed, right? I'll take...an extended lunch." After all of this, she wasn't sure she was going to be able to eat at all.
"I think you should. You've worked hard today, I'm sure, and it's going to be a long afternoon…" Again a cry from somewhere behind him cut into the conversation. This time, Hanni's sharp bark seemed intended to cut that cry short. Obed ignored the both of them. "Why don't you take some pictures of the flowers you planted and head over? Use the side door. We'll be in the office, with everything you need."
Isobel nodded, murmuring assent into the mic. "All right. I love you." It seemed a weird thing to say, and yet felt entirely necessary in the moment. She clicked off the line and turned back to review the flowers and plants she'd spent the afternoon tending to—it was strange enough to go from encouraging life to snuffing one out. The trowel in her hand went into the dirt like a bookmark to remind her where she'd left off; she snapped a few photos, pleased with her work even as she struggled to focus on it.
As she walked away to find a manager to whom to report her early absence, she walked by another table full of tools. After a pause, she grabbed a pair of gardening shears and pocketed them.