Tag Archive | character: xenia

Into the Doorway, a beginning for Facets of Dusk

To Rix_Scaedu‘s prompt.

Facets of Dusk has a landing page here

This is the beginning of their first mission, so comes before almost everything.

They had their assignment.

They had several assignments. There was the primary mission and two spoken secondary missions. There were their individual assignments, overt and covert. And there were a couple that did not come from their nominal leaders.

They had their gear.

Alexa had her Diplomat Clothes, wrinkle-resistant, fast-drying, and professional-looking in almost any environment.

Cole had his weapons. All of them. He had basic survival gear and a full uniform with no insignia anywhere. And he had weapons.

Josie had her backpacking gear and an apothacary’s worth of herbal… things. Nobody knew what they were for, but they were light.

Peter had his instruments, and then some more instruments, and a large pad of paper. Nobody knew what they were all for, and some of them were heavy, but Peter carried them all.

Xenia had her weapons, her climbing gear, her survival gear, and her weapons. She weighed every single item, and discarded anything that would weigh her down.

Aerich, as far as they could tell, planned on going forth with an expensive suit, a stunning chin, and monumental arrogance. Very few of these weighed anything, at least.

They had their team.

Xenia shared a look with Cole. Both of them looked at Peter; Xenia’s lip curled. Cole glanced at Aerich, his hand resting on his gun. Aerich’s lip curled at Josie. Josie’s nose wrinkled at Xenia. Xenia looked sidelong at Alexa. And Alexa was giving Peter the stinkeye.

They had their door.

Alexa. It all came down to Aleandra Bianchi. Cole stepped up to one side of her, Xenia to the other. This ought to be a military operation. It ought to be an exploratory mission. Instead, it all hinged on a former diplomat with a barely-tested ability to open doors into other worlds.

Peter ran his instruments over the doorway – deep in the archives of the university, well-camouflaged by opening, mundanely, to a supply room full of microfiche. Three of his instruments screamed at him every time they got near. It was definitely The Door.

They had their orders. Alexa opened the Door. Six mavericks stepped into the doorway.

A team would step out.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/452614.html. You can comment here or there.

The Stars, a story of Facets of Dusk for the Giraffe Call

For cluudle‘s prompt.

This comes after Gender Play, here.

Facets of Dusk has a landing page here

“I can’t see the stars.” Alexa clutched Xenia’s hand. Alex. Today, she was he was Alex, and she-he-Alex was Xenia’s companion.

And her companion had the jitters. Xenia glanced up into the night sky. This world was dark at night, the only luminescence allowed thin strips along the sidewalks. Blackout curtains covered every window.

And tonight, there were no stars out at all. “That can’t be good.” She sniffed the air. The air was crisp, traffic being limited in daytime and, of course, totally missing at night. Somewhere, someone was burning a roast. A hot dog vendor – or this world’s equivalent – must be right around the corner.

And over it all, the smell of ozone and the suggestion of something very, very larger. “Lex, we need to get inside. Now.”

“We’re still three blocks from the party.”

“We should be close to the Tyen Tunnel our contact told us about.”

“But we were going to get some fresh air.”

Either Alex-a was playing her role too well, or she’d just gotten a little too used to being the one in the front of the charge. “Go… Goram fuck it, Alex, if you don’t get in that building right now, I am going to turn your ass a beautiful shade of purple when we get home.”

Alex-a meeped, and moved. “Xen…”

“Complain later, move now.”

Down the street, she could hear the hot dog vendor cheering. “Tell him who’s boss, sister.” She shoved Alex-a through the revolving door to the tunnel entrance as the skies opened op and the rain poured down.

“Turn my ass purple?” Alex-a muttered.

“Stay in character, and I won’t.” They watched the rain come down, washing the streets clean. More than washing; it looked like it was etching the pavement. No wonder there haven’t been many people out. “Well. That’s why your stars are missing.”

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/451560.html. You can comment here or there.

30Days: Falling Falling Falling Down

Day 21 of 30 days of Fiction:”23) Prompt: falling”

Another snippet of Facets of Dusk. 🙂

It was Xenia’s turn to hold Alexa’s hand, although they arranged such things without ever speaking about it. The world they were leaving was too unpleasant, too cold, for Josie to be any use at all, so she came in near the end, buffering Aerich and Alexa, focusing on his turmoil to avoid thinking too hard about her own.

Cole stepped through the mist, so comforting and incongruous inside the steel doorway, vanished into its embrace one limb at a time, until his hand jerked out of her grasp. Unbalanced (some would say she always was, but what did they know?), Josie tumbled after him, Aerich nearly atop her.

And they fell, nothing around them but grey storm clouds and one perplexed bird. There had to be a door; that was how the whole system worked. A door in the middle of thin air? She twisted to look up, trusting her teammates to manage the problem of landing.

Through the clouds, she could barely make out the darker grey of stone. A balcony? She moved the wind, carefully, not wanting to impact the climate more than she had to.

Next to her, still holding her wrist in his dry, firm grip, Aerich chanted, drawing glyphs in the air with his free hand. Below her, Cole swore, the sort of calm, rhythmic swearing that meant he had a plan and was working on it.

And stretching up above them all, taller, it seemed, than the skyscraper they’d stepped out of, was the ruin of an ancient tower, grey stone spiraling into the clouds.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/66437.html. You can comment here or there.