234: She had been trying to avoid all of the recent chaos with this...admittedly strange new headquarters, but unfortunately even the Hacker needed food. As soon as she had her lunch- or was it dinner? She kept losing track of the time in her room- she inched her way to a table in the very corner of the room. Her sweater was having her overheat as always, but May tried her best to ignore it and instead occupied herself with neatly cutting through her chicken and sipping from her glass of icewater. I should have gotten it to go.
224: She too was trying to avoid chaos. In fact, she was sitting underneath the table to eat her sub sandwich with the plate in her lap. This SEEMED like the best place to hide from people while eating... back to wall. So long as nobody sat just h- OH GOD. Who is this? There's a person here. They were.... wearing grey. That means hacker, right? But she didn't recognize these legs. It didn't look like 044. And it definitely was 054 or 004. Niz silently ate her sandwich for a few to ponder this moment. But then opted to just go ahead and greet who she assumes to be a new person by knocking on the bottom of the table.
234: Holy- the table. May was incapable of stopping herself from jumping in shock, her knees knocking into the edge of the table as she recoiled away instinctively. Her first thought was that perhaps a Feral had left their partner behind, or an animal was hanging around for scraps- but then, what animal knocked? May closed her eyes and took a deep breath, steeling herself, before she tentatively ducked her head under the tabletop. Her eyes widened slightly when she spotted the true artist of the knocking: a fellow Hacker, with a beautiful cocoa complexion and bright eyes. "Um...hello," May finally managed, blinking once.
224: She blinks in return, seemingly unabashed that this hacker found her under the table like this. "Yá'át'ééh." She gives a little wave. "Hiding from snipers. Sorry. Some Valentines Day thing where they're playing cupid with nerf darts." She hoped this was a reasonable explanation. Niz thought it was anyway. "Name's Niz. Rank's 224." She gave the woman a thumbs up.
234: A flicker of interest sparked in May's eyes at the foreign lilt of an unfamiliar language, and then she blinked again, slowly mulling over Niz's explanation. After a second she cleared her throat, realizing she'd forgotten to return the thumbs up gesture- she did so as best as she could, what with her gloved hands half-swallowed by her sleeves, and answered faintly, "Rank 234; I prefer May, though." After a pause, she took a breath and glanced over her shoulder. "What is the point of these darts? Do they actually work like Cupid's arrows, or are they just...aesthetic?"
224: She jsut watches 234 clear her throat. She just takes a bite of her sandwich as she waits for the hacker to speak. "Not sure, May. I am 90% certain it's just nerf darts and paint. All the same, I don't wanna have to clean paint off my clothing or out of my hair if I can help it." She nods.
234: "I...alright." May simply shook her head and dropped her hands back in her lap, still half-bent over to peer under the table. After a moment she shifted so that she was laying on her side, seemingly unbothered by the stark strangeness of this entire situation. Why would anyone want to shoot around Nerf darts soaked in paint for Valentine's Day?
May silently prayed that none of that paint would find its way on her sweaters. "I can't blame you for hiding, then," she offered dully.
224: "I know right?" Munches on sandwich and watches the hacker jsut lay there. This was, if anything, a bit amusing. "So.... how long you been here for? Havent seen yo around..." Then again, Niz wasn't the worlds most observant creature outside of a computer.
234: May breathed out a barely audible sigh and rested her cheek against her wrist. It was nice, sometimes, wearing so much padded clothing. It made for a lovely pillow at basically any time she desired one. "Not long," she admitted. "A few days. I was transferred from HQ03." Curiously, May's eyes flickered over the other Hacker again. "How long have you been here?" Her question- and actions- insinuated that she had at least resided at HQ01 for a few months.
224: "Almost 5 months?" She tilted her head thinking about that. "Yeah, almost 5 months. Well, I'm happy to have you about, May! It's pretty nice around here. Even when the pilots and snipers are being silly."
234: Her eyebrows twitched upwards slightly as if impressed, but on the inside May was also relieved. Not only had she found another Hacker who was similarly reserved, but Niz was also a bit of a newcomer. She had enough experience to help the both of them maneuver at headquarters, but not so much that she viewed May as inferior. "Thank you," May said softly, her expression melting into a gentle and genuine smile. "I'm happy I ran into you- or, rather, sat at your table..."
224: "As am I, May." She finishes her sandwich and just watches the other hacker. "Soooooo, why the coat?" She blinked. It wasn't that cold in here. Maybe it was a fashion thing?
234: She felt her cheeks turning pink as Niz ate the rest of her meal and then proceeded to observe her. May was usually the one doing the observing, so this was...new. Given how off guard she already was, she wasn't exactly prepared for Niz's sudden question- especially since it centered around her sweater. May self-consciously tucked her sweater in, though it bunched upon itself in soft folds of gray and only seemed more noticeable as a result. "I can't be touched," she explained quietly.
224: "Oh...." An assassin recently gave a similar answer as to why she was wearing a coat. Niz just tilted her head and opted to avoid pushing the subject. "It looks good on you. And looks comfortable." She hoped that was enough to let the poor girl off the hook.
234: God, she hated that look; it was always the same, a mix of pity and morbid curiosity. Still, it was better than the disgust she had been met with the one time she'd tried to own up to the fact that her skin was an active and ever-present threat. A small smile touched May's lips at Niz's attempt to steer the conversation back to shallower waters, and she gladly followed along. "It's very soft," May admitted, almost proud. She deftly plucked at the edge of her sleeve and pulled it outwards, till the hand inside was enveloped away in a cushion of fabric. Without really thinking if anyone would find it odd, she held out the "safe" stretch of sleeve for Niz to touch.
224: She didn't think it was odd and reached out and touched the sleeve to feel the material. She was originally jsut spouting whatever to avoid awkward topics, but the coat realy was soft. "Very comfy indeed." Touchy Touchy. "What store did you get it at? I might go get one myself... do they have one in purple?"
234: May smiled slightly at the instant change of Niz's expression, studying her as the other Hacker admired the fleecy sleeve. "I had it shipped online," she admitted. Shopping was not only hazardous but...very difficult for May, considering the fact that she wore at least two layers of thick clothing at all times and could not handle human contact. She also tended to look very odd going around and pressing her palms against everything to see if it was soft enough for her tastes, and then surreptitiously pulling her gloves back on each time. "I could show you the page? I don't remember where I ordered it from." Ah, the wonders of Amazon.
224: "Yes please. That'd be awesome." She looked around. "I should robably get up from here since I'm done.... you still got food topside?" Again she tapped the table above her head.
234: She only registered her surprise with a sudden blankness of expression at Niz's reminder, and even that was quickly wiped away as she forced a smile. "Right...yes." She'd completely forgotten. May flashed an apologetic smile before taking back her sleeve and sitting up, poking at her dinner with disappointment. Stone cold.
224: She peeked over the edge to watch 234 poke the cold meal. "Whoops..... sorry."
234: May couldn't help but wince slightly at the unexpected appearance of her new acquaintance, easily surprised as always- though she quickly waved a hand to allay Niz's fears. "It's not your fault," she admitted honestly. "I completely forgot I was supposed to be eating."
224: She gave a thumbs up and looked around. "If you want, you can get it to go." It didn't LOOK like there were any snipers near by. So she hesitantly sat in the chair. "Or you can eat it here. I'll stick with you."
234: "Really?" May blinked rapidly at Niz's unexpected offer to stay. After a half a second, she leaned closer and whispered as if discussing highly confidential information. "But what about...the paint darts?" May looked for all the world as if she were completely serious, with her dark brown eyes round and solemnly fixed on Niz's face.
224: "Yooooou can't scare me off that easily." Hurry up and get your food girl, this is horrifying. "Besides, I don't see anymore sniper pink."
234: A small grin softened May's expression before she leaned back, seeming to smile to herself as she neatly arranged her plate. "I've never not scared anyone off before," she said cheerfully. Though her hands were mostly engulfed in her sleeves, she was still quite deft at organizing what was likely salvageable with her fork. She glanced up for a moment before she stood, narrowing her eyes just slightly. "No pink?"
224: "The Sniper Color is apparently Pink in this place. Not sure why, but it is." She gave a nod. "Its for those super stealthy types." She nodded wisely. "For as we all know, Pink is the best color to hide in."
234: How very odd. "Ah, of course," May said, touching a hand to her forehead as if she couldn't believe she had forgotten. "Alright, then I'll watch for pink while I get a box."
224: She chuckled. "Alrighty!" And she will wait.
234: Getting a box was not difficult, and unsurprisingly, neither was keeping an eye out for any pink. May hastened back to the table in the corner anyway, though, not wanting to leave Niz alone for too long. She knew all too well what that felt like. She held up the box just before she reached the table, and May smiled as she bent over, transferring her chicken and rice from her plate. "Paint darts avoided," she announced.
224: Niz is fine with being alone. By the time May got back, Niz has a USB in her mouth as if it were a toothpick. She was bobbing her head as if listening to music and then May arrived. "Mission success Agent May." Thumbs up.
234: Curiosity glowed in May's eyes at the sight of the USB; it was not an unfamiliar thing at all, but it was odd to see one in a person's mouth. She watched for a second until her curiosity got the better of her. "Is that...part of your ability?" She gestured at the USB with her fork in case she wasn't clear enough.
224: She blinked and nodded. "My mouth is essentially an access point to the human hard drive." She taps the side of her head to show she meant the brain. "Can read, listen, and See What's on a storage device as long as its in my mouth."
234: May's eyes widened until she felt as if they might just pop out of her head. No...way. What she wouldn't give for that kind of skill! She was certain that her awe had to be showing- had her jaw really dropped open? Right, so it had- but she didn't really care. "That is absolutely fascinating," May managed at long last.
224: Niz likes attention and people thinking she's awesome. So she approves May's reaction. Yessss. She almost glows as her ego swells. "I know right?" She wasn't gonna tell May that it opened her up to taking on computer viruses and risking her memory getting kerfuffled. She liked just the awe May was in now. Keep that, please.
234: If only she had a nonlethal- and handy- gift like that. May couldn't help but stare for a few seconds longer before shaking her head quickly and gathering up her boxed chicken, self-consciously tucking back her mess of brown hair. "That must be unbelievably useful," she murmured. "Especially in our field." She paused before glancing back at Niz again. "I've actually never been beyond the Hacker Bay...where do you like to go around here?"
224: "It's more of a spy ability I find. I can also store what I see and hear onto devices." She nodded. She liked boast. "Hmmm.... I enjoy the common room, the pool, my room, annnnd.... the kitchen is never bad. Arts and Rec can be fun." Niz obviously wasn't the shy hacker archtype.
234: Now things were just insane. Niz was a walking computer. Envy practically coursed through May's veins as she tried not to envision how helpful that kind of ability would have been for her- and how easy to hide. Clearly, though, Niz didn't see any need to hide it. She practically radiated pride. May wished for a second that she could feel the same way about her own ability. She shook the thought away with a small toss of her head, mulling over Niz's options with a surprised look. There were that many rooms here? Obviously the pool isn't an option. She hadn't been swimming since the age of six. "What is Arts and Rec?" she asked after a brief pause.
224: She opened one eye. She could tell May was getting upset. She was curious about May's ability... it must be terrible. But she won't push. "Art Room, Music stuff, art stuff, good place to draw and listen in your own time."
234: May perked up visibly at the mention of music. God, she loved music. "Do you know anyone here who plays?" she asked, clutching her chicken a bit closer to her abdomen. It was almost too much to hope for.
224: "Iiiii play video game?" She smiled, knowing that's not what the hacker meant. "And I can dance. Unfortunatly, I don't know any who can play music. But I'm sure there are some he- Oh wait. There's an assassin.... forget his number.... one of the lower ranked ones. He can play guitar."
234: Her lips twitched upward slightly at Niz's teasing, but she didn't let her hope dissipate until she heard the "unfortunately." May perked up, though, when she heard about an assassin with a guitar. It wasn't much, but it was something. And anyway...she was interested in something else now. "You dance?" she asked, tilting her head and trying to imagine it. It was actually easy. Niz had a very sleek sort of figure, and May could picture her in a long room with the glass mirrors; maybe even a ballet bar, if that was her thing.
224: "Yup. Mom insisted I take up ballroom dancing." She let out an exhausted sigh. "Mom insisted I take up dancing when I was younger. No idea why. Buuut I turned it around on her and got to do my own kind of dancing." Yes, Niz can dance the robot. And do it freestyle
234: "Ballroom." May tried to hide a smile- it didn't work so well. Niz was already beautiful, but in a long ballroom gown, spinning across a bejeweled floor...? Her envy knew no bounds, it seemed. This time it was easy to hide, though, because she felt happy for the other woman. "Well, in a way then you ought to thank her," May teased. "She did introduce you to something you like, even if it was by accident."
224: "Sshhhhhhh, don't say it outloud. I want to block those thoughts out." She joked. "I bet you can dance well..." She tilted her head. "Can you?"
234: May took a second to consider Niz's question before shrugging honestly. "I'm okay at it. I mean, I've never taken any formal lessons...and I've never danced with a partner before, so no one saw the point in me taking training." It didn't bother her much. Dancing had just happened to be a part of theatre, and she'd kind of taken it as a part of the whole. She loved to watch it, but she wasn't the greatest dancer herself.
224: She gave a nod. "I bet you're awesome"
234: The faintest blush colored May's cheeks, but she shook her head slightly. "Strictly average, I'm afraid."
234: "Why don't you show me?" May blinked curiously and settled into a small smile, seeming at ease for the first time since arriving in the new headquarters. "You do seem mighty sure of yourself..."
224: "Me show you how well you can dance?" She raised an eyebrow.
234: May took half a second and then laughed quietly. "No, I mean show me how you can dance. And this Arts room, I suppose." She raised both her eyebrows right back at the other Agent's perplexed look, staring at her expectantly and hiding a smile.
224: "Ummm..... what kind? I mean... I can bring up something up I guess.... haven't had an audienc here before." She was certain not many people around here liked dubstep.
234: "Whatever comes to mind. I'm not picky." She wondered briefly about Niz's comment about audiences- if she had taken dance lessons, wouldn't people have watched? Or did she mean her personal preference for dance?- before deciding that it didn't matter. If Niz wasn't comfortable, she wouldn't push it on her, but she'd seemed quite sure before. May was a curious person and now that her interest had been piqued, she really wanted to see how good Niz was.
224: "Hmmm..." She would think about it on the way to the Arts and Rec room. Wondering exactly what to dance. See, lessons had an audience, but those were less judgmental.... well they were, but ehh. Personal requests were so... personallllll.
181: Upon entering the arts and rec, there is a single assassin sitting in the corner. A crutch propped against the armchair as she's reading silently.
224: Seeing the tiny woman she pointed. "Maybe another time. Don't wanna disturb her. She's rather attached to her books." SAFE! She hopes.
234: May was more than happy to follow along, though she stuck as close as she dared to the other Hacker's side as they walked. She made sure to carefully note their path in her mind, quickly sketching out a mental map and searing it into her brain before she realized with a start that they were there. Niz pointed outwards with a sudden declaration, and May felt her heart sink as she spotted another person. If not for Niz, she would have just backed away quickly and been done with it all- she wasn't a people person if she could help it- but then Niz mentioned books, and May faltered, hovering halfway through the door. "D...do you know her?" she whispered, trying her best not to draw attention to them.
181: Depending on how observant 234 is, she may see that the assassins eyes doo veer toward then for half a second before going back to her Agatha Christie Novel. Something that might be more striking about this assassin is that like 234, she is wearing a coat that completely covers her arms. WITH gloves.
224: "181. Silent book nerd that doesn't like relaxing." She nods.
234: She barely listened to Niz's response once the other Hacker nodded; she was still hung up on the fact that she was a bookworm. Apparently, anyway. Yet when she peered around the door again to get a better glimpse, May saw that 181 did indeed have a novel in her hands. Not only was she reading intently, but she was also dressed differently- with a long-sleeved coat and gloves. May's eyes widened imperceptibly for a moment as she took this information in, and then she glanced uncertainly towards Niz. "Do you know her name?" she asked softly. May hadn't had much opportunity to voice it, but she really hated referring to other human beings as numbers.
224: Sigh. "She doesn't go by a name. 'All Agents should go by their rank' was her response when I asked her name"
234: Well, that only made her even more curious. May bit her lip, thoroughly torn as to what to do at this point- she could almost taste the disdain in Niz's voice, but then Niz had been so kind to her....yet 181 already seemed so similar to May herself. Did she have a dangerous ability or something to hide too? Was she just as lonely and isolated? "Everyone has a name," May murmured half to herself, still watching the other girl across the room.
224: It was less disdain and more frustration really. "I know, but she insists. Maybe you can get to her.... I'm fairly certain she doesn't like me."
234: May glanced at her companion and thought for a moment. "Do you read much?"
224: She thought about the sheer amount of pornography and fanfics she had on one of her USB's. "Not much, no."
234: "That might be a barrier," May admitted, bringing a sweatered hand up to her chin. The other still clutched her food. "As a bookworm myself, I can safely say...it is easier to relate to fictional characters than most human beings."
224: She nodded. Yes, that is all true. But she didn't bring up the fact that 181 was about as friendly as an alligator with a toothache.
181: She continued to read. Her only movements turning a page.
234: Indecision etched itself into every line of May's nervous frown, and she fidgeted before taking half a step forward. "Should we at least say hello?" It seemed rude to just burst in and then leave without saying anything to truly acknowledge the woman they'd disturbed.
224: She'd sooner leave. "If you want." She'd really sooner leave though. Last time they spoke, 181 had treated her like a child. She didn't approve of that.
234: May could tell that Niz wasn't high on the idea. Still, though.... "I can make it up to you?" she offered hesitantly. "Maybe meet for breakfast...? I don't...expect you to stick around and listen to two nerds talk about their favorite books." That is, if 181 even talks to me.
224: "Naaah. Hackers gotta stick together. I'll follow you though..."
181: She was wondering how long the hackers were going to take. She's not an animal in a zoo.
234: Wow. No one had ever stuck through with her before, especially not a practical stranger. She gave Niz a grateful look before hesitantly slipping inside the room, taking a deep breath and walking towards 181 as confidently as she could. It seemed as if the other woman was still fully aware of their presence. When May was about two yards away, she hesitated and then apologized, "I'm sorry if I'm disturbing you- I'm just wondering what it is you're reading." The book looked familiar.
181: She was flipping through her book and looked up at 234 upon her questioning with eyebrow raised. She took in 234's appearance. Making note of the coat, but not commenting. Instead of verbally answering she just showed the book cover at her. 'The Body in the Library' by Agatha Christie.
224: She kept behind 234. Not likeing the tiny assassin
234: May refused to flinch under the other woman's scrutiny, waiting patiently until 181 simply showed her the cover of her novel. Leaning closer, May's eyes brightened as she read the title. "Ah," she said, seeming slightly more animated. "You're a Christie fan?"
181: She has a thing with people approaching her. So she leaned back a little when 234 leaned in. But, the book didn't move. "Yes." She answered simply. "And other mystery novels."
234: May quickly noted 181's reaction and subtly leaned back again, keeping a respectable distance for the other woman's comfort. She wondered for a split second if 181 knew what was wrong with her. I doubt it. She probably just values her personal space. "I love a good mystery novel," 234 admitted, "though fantasy is likely my favorite genre. Christie was a true revolutionist for thrillers though."
181: She gave a nod. "....which is your favorite?" She liked this hacker. More than the one behind her. And which she didn't know EXACTLY what was wrong, she could guess that her ability required concealment. Whether for protection or concealment, remains unclear.
234: "Of Agatha's work?" May paused for a moment to think, almost having completely forgotten Niz behind her. She was completely in her element here. "I have to say...likely Five Little Pigs. But I also harbor a fondness for Curtain. Poirot was one of my favorite literary characters in mystery, so I can never quite forget that final case..."
181: "I like Poirot as well" She gave a nod. "But I was referring to what was your favorite fantasy novel?"
224: Oh great. They're both book nerds. BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOORING. -nizwtfplz- Tho... 181 was talking. What the hell woman?
234: A bit of color flushed in May's pale cheeks, but she didn't seem too flustered as she nodded in understanding. "Right, sorry. In all honesty, I'm not too sure...though the first one I read that introduced me to it all was Eragon. I love the entire series, though Inheritance might be my favorite of the four."
181: She blinked. "I have not read Inheritance, but I have the other 3. I prefer Tolkien" She gave a nod. "Hard to beat him..."
224: Eragon was a crap movie. Good effects tho. She starts looking around. Wondering what to do while these two talk forever.
234: "Tolkien is definitely a challenge to the up and coming," May agreed, allowing a smile, "but I think that Martin succeeded. His novels are admittedly better than the series HBO made."
181: She gave a nod, again. "Indeed. It makes you wonder what is going through the auythors mind though... at points."
224: "Something sick and twisted, I'm sure." She muttered from her corner where she has sat down and popped a USB into her mouth. She was gonna read Manga.
234: She nodded with barely contained excitement, seemingly ready to launch into an eager exultation of Martin's genius- and then May remembered Niz. Shame flushed her cheeks as she turned back towards the other Hacker, and she struggled for the right words. "N-no- well- it all depends," she said weakly, before holding out her hands helplessly. "I'm sorry. I got carried away. Did you want to go somewhere else?"
224: She waved her hand. "No no, you have fun. Don't worry."
181: .... She expected Niz to be more pouty, so she was pleasantly surprised. "If you wish to borrow a book, I can lend you any from my library."
234: May wasn't sure if the invitation was for her or Niz- or both- so she simply glanced between the two other women and smiled uncertainly. Wow. A half ago, you had no friends, and now you're holding a conversation. With two people. She brushed her hair out of her eyes self-consciously and then smiled, glancing back at 181. "I'd like to return that invitation," she said, the ends of her lips quirking up. "By the way, I'm 234- though I'd rather be called May." She might have overstepped some kind of boundary, but May really didn't like being called a number.
181: It was to her. 181 still doesn't like Niz. "Thank you" She set the book in her lap. "I am 181. And I am sorry, I prefer to go by our given ranks within the Agency." It wasn't said in anger. It was just a statement. No negative tone of voice.
234: "Ah, that's fine," May murmured, glancing at the book a final time before tracing the outline of 181's face with concealed curiosity. "I take it you've been here a while?"
181: "A month" Another short response. She didn't sound annoyed. She didn't sound upset. She didn't sound excited either. "You are new?"
234: "Yes," May admitted, though she didn't seem ashamed of it. "I was transferred."
181: She nodded. "From where?" It's as if she was reading off a list.
234: "HQ03." She shrugged simply and then folded her arms across her chest. "Did you start out here?"
181: She shook her head. "I trained at HQ04 and HQ02." Sabrina tilted her head. Body language 101, folding arms is psychologically defensive. So Sabrina will relent a bit. "I hope you are enjoying your time here." She even offered a little smile. Not sure if it's fake or not, but it's reassuring the assassin does smile.
234: Goodness, this woman seemed so...flat. May wasn't sure if it was true or if it was a defense mechanism, but as 181 disguised her own analysis, May did the same, brightening at the sight of a smile. "Well, thank you," she said happily, looking back towards Niz. "...I'll leave you in peace, but...thank you for everything. And enjoy the mystery." She gestured at 181's book with a slight grin.
181: She gave a nod. "It was nice to meet you 234." Something changed in the smile when the hacker mentioned the book. And the assassin tilted her head in confirmation that she will.
224: Niz is the most observant hacker ever. Not. She's got her eyes closed and is bobbing her head. She is, at the moment, listening to Music and reading Comic books. So her audio and visual senses are at zero.
234: May hid her genuine excitement and relief as she nodded once to 181 by way of farewell, turning back to Niz and...finding her senseless. For a second she hesitated, her joy evaporating into fear as she thought of trying to touch her. May took a breath and then wadded up her hand in her sleeve before daring to tap Niz's shoulder, murmuring, "Hey...um...we can go."
181: Watching the whole scene.
224: She was paying no attention as she was focused on music. And as such... when she was tapped on the shoulder, she jumped. "Wah?" She nearly dropped the USB, but she caught it. "Oh.... Ok"
234: She dared not sigh in relief, instead subtly tucking her hands under her armpits in relief as she smiled. "Sorry," she apologized. "Didn't mean to startle you. Was just saying we're all good here."
224: "Oh no, I deserve it when I'm like that" She smiles. Thinking the girl is just super shy, not knowing her ability. "Where to next, May?"
181: She is guessing ability most definitely. But she'll just silently watch over her book.
234: "I was...about to ask you that, actually," May admitted, a teasing gleam in her eye. She glanced briefly at 181 and found her watching, and her heart jumped in her chest as she wondered if she had seen her strange display.
181: She just nodded. Understanding.
224: 181 showed more understanding than Niz anyway. "You're the new girl. I'm game for anything. Really." She gave a thumbs up.