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Private hold on for another day

Discussion in 'Pandopolis' started by Mera, Jan 6, 2019.

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  1. Mera

    Mera DC Universe

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    January 24th, Year 108
    @Arthur Curry

    For the first time she arrived in Pandora, Mera finally felt like she was completely relaxed. There was the expected exhilaration that ran through her body when she dived into the water, but her journey this time had led her beyond the surface and toward an area that reminded her of Atlantis in its own way. Once she arrived at the underwater settlement, she took some time to explore the various sections before settling on where most of the people had congregated. As she swam between the various groups of sea creatures and other beings alike, there was apart of her that was holding onto some sort of hope that she saw a familiar face.

    She had met a good amount of people in Pandora so far and most were friendly, but no sign of anyone from Atlantis made things feel a little lonely. The market area of the Emerald Reef was bustling with activity even at such an early hour of the day and Mera was ready to explore the elements that were waiting to be discovered. She stopped to have a few brief conversations with some of the other inhabitants of the area to learn more about the reef, but once she was on her own again, she focused on the various stalls and what they were selling.

    Mera stopped at a booth near the end of the market and quickly grew interested with the various small pieces of jewelry they were selling. One of the first pieces she picked up to examine was a small delicate bracelet with shards of sea glass that reflected various colors of green. She placed it around her wrist to try it on, but her time to admire quickly came to a close when the booth suddenly got tremendously busier.

    As the crowd grew bigger around her, Mera placed the bracelet back on the display and her eyes immediately travelled around the group. Her gaze settled on someone who was examining a ring, but once the owner looked a little too busy, they began swimming with the unpurchased item in hand. Mera immediately began swimming after on the culprit. She was tempted to call out to them, but instead quickened her swim until she was matching them stroke for stroke. Her eyes began to illuminate as her hands immediately moved to wrap a tendril of water around the creature’s torso hoping a scare tactic would end things. Instead of the creature looking alarmed, she heard a few gasps of worry around her that almost broke her concentration.

     
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  2. Arthur Curry

    Arthur Curry DC Universe

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    Like before, Arthur went where the currents carried him. There was still something to be said about the freedoms of being a nobody drunk who lended a hand only where he was absolutely needed. He'd been at this for years before that lunatic Wayne tracked him down, and a month and some change of more of the same felt like no time at all. Besides, if the prevailing theories were to be believed, eventually he'd be brought back home with hardly a memory of this funny pocket dimension, to Atlantis right where he left it. Nothing difficult to it.

    He did learn a few things about the world at large—worlds, rather. About another Arthur who was blond and pale like he should've been named a Chris (or something) instead. He tried not to think about that Arthur and the ramifications he posed, like if he were to approach anybody familiar, anybody at all, there'd be that discomfiting risk of them looking at him funny and asking why he wasn't that Arthur.

    Noises of a ruckus carried through the waters, reaching his ears just as he finished a transaction exchanging a recent recovery of sunken treasure for drinking coin. Arthur expected it to be more of the usual, until he caught a glimpse of that shock of red hair drifting in the midst of the spectacle, that had his pulse skipping a beat. Before he knew it, he was diving right past the onlookers muttering in trepidation and seized her quarry by the scaly arm.

    "Figures I'd find you stirring up a scene," he quipped, grinning with something like fondness touching his amber eyes. But there was something restrained there which held him back from his usual ease. He had no freakin' idea how far along the timeline she was, if she remembered kissing him in the middle of a warzone, or if she was even another Mera altogether who remembered the blond. Clearing his throat, he pushed the thief toward her—since she looked... fine, just fine, obviously, handling it on her own (and between the two of them it wasn't as if Mr. Literal Sticky Fingers had any chance of getting away now). "Pickpocket?" he asked, casually in spite of the staring.

     
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  3. Mera

    Mera DC Universe

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    Mera knew she didn’t have to play hero in that moment, but there was something about the beauty in the location being disrupted that immediately caused her to focus on making sure something bad didn’t continue on for more than a few seconds. She didn’t account for the fact that she would catch the attention of other people so fast and the voices around her were growing quickly. Her mind continued to focus on moving the tendril of water tighter around the creature’s waist as she slowly pulled him back toward where she had stationed herself. Her concentration quickly fell on the wayside the moment she heard a familiar voice and the tendril of water broke apart the moment she lost her focus to look at Arthur.

    She felt her heart beat faster and an immediate sigh escaped her lips once she focused on the fact that he was there with her after all. Part of her felt like she should have been alarmed by the fact that he was there and not back in Atlantis, but she blamed the selfish part of her mind that decided she was relieved to see him. “I have to make my first visit here memorable and all,” she replied with a smirk. She immediately moved to swim closer to him, but was greeted with the thief being pushed in her direction.

    She nodded solemnly and pointed back toward the booth where everything began as she grabbed onto the creature’s wrist. “I don’t remember jewelry being something needed for survival,” she said out loud casting an annoyed glance at the thief. She lifted her free hand and immediately held it out in front of the creature’s gaze and narrowed her eyes until it moved to grab the ring out of its pocket and dropped it back into her hand. After briefly holding the ring up to the light and examining the condition, Mera released the creature and quickly formed a small jet of water to push him in the opposite direction of the market.

    Once the thief was on his way, the voices eventually quieted and Mera was finally able to focus on Arthur completely. “You being here worries me,” Mera said softly trying to push away the fear of what might be happening back home, “But seeing you here and alive, it’s so good to see you.” It was a weird mix of emotions to be felt, but she hoped that he felt the same way.

     
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  4. Arthur Curry

    Arthur Curry DC Universe

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    That settled that, the spectacle diminishing to just two people talking. But a fraction of all bystanders would always stare if they had nothing better to do, and some of those eyes did linger belatedly. They'd move on to something more interesting in their own time, and Arthur motioned to drift back down toward the floor of the market, so that the ring could be returned, and as though he didn't notice. He did. He just didn't care.

    His thoughts were primarily occupied by a swell of relief that Mera did recognize him, her banter similar in tone to those couple days they spent scouring the earth for the trident. They couldn't be too far off, which judging by the faces he'd encountered and their reactions to him, couldn't be taken for granted. He didn't even know what he'd do if the alternative happened and she just stared at him in confusion--apologise? Swim away and resist the temptation to punch his head against a pillar until he'd swum far enough away? But he didn't have to think about that anymore.

    It didn't settle every uncertainty, but he wasn't some kid in high school.

    "Why would I not be alive?" he prompted with an easy scoff, in his usual cavalier manner. "And if Atlantis is missing us, they've still got my mom and Vulko to keep all engines running smoothly." In that scenario, he imagined that would take time away from being with his father, but it wouldn't be... bad. There were no kings, this time, to tell Atlanna who she could or could not see.

    And again, a subdued quality settled in the waters around him. There was a stolen glance before he looked straight on ahead, fingers curling at his sides as he tried not to curse himself aloud before he would let that funny whirl of wistful longing turn him into an imbecile. "Now would be a good time to do a timeline check. You're... pre-Brine? Post?"

     
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  5. Mera

    Mera DC Universe

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    Even though things had started off a bit challenging for the cause she hoped Arthur would support and at times Mera grew annoyed by some of his responses, Arthur was still a genuine person she felt like she could open up to and the connection was something she never experienced before. From the way he responded to her comment about him being alive, the redhead was instantly prompted in her mind to consider the whole timeline changes that others she had met along the way had mentioned. Arthur seemed pretty relaxed about the whole impending war, but there was no trident in his grasp which still left her wondering what exactly she had missed.

    Arthur was clearly curious about the whole thing too and Mera was fine with telling him what she knew last in order to solve some of the questions that hung in the area. She held up a finger to him as she bit her lip and slowly moved back toward the surface of the market to return the lost piece of jewelry before she responded. There were many unknowns that she had to prepared to hear no matter if they were something good or not and this at least gave her a moment to prepare herself for any bad news. She returned the ring to the shop owner and waved away any sort of reward offer before she swam back up to meet Arthur’s gaze.

    She sighed and slowly shook her head before responding and her shoulders tensed in preparation for anything she might not like to hear. “I’m pre, I suppose. I was waiting for you with your mother to hopefully get the trident when I showed up,” she said softly, “And that would be why I’m happy to see you and all. Everything was in a slight state of impatient waiting for me.” The waiting had been one of the worst things for her and combined with the extra days in Pandora, that didn’t help either.

    Mera moved to swim closer to him trying to catch any glimpse of a sign that his journey had been successful from where she was, but she didn’t see any hint of gold that indicated the trident was nearby. “Were things alright where you’re from? I can only assume you’ve seen more than me and anything you can do to ease my mind is appreciated,” she admitted with a hesitant smile, She didn’t like to admit moments where Mera felt weakened by her thoughts, but Arthur was one of the few that she felt comfortable being able to admit those sort of things to.

     
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  6. Arthur Curry

    Arthur Curry DC Universe

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    As he waited near the stalls, Arthur took in her grim demeanor and endeavored to match it, fixing his gaze at anywhere but the back of her head so she wouldn't catch him staring, his arms resting across his chest. His own mind was still processing the surreal quality of finally finding her here, before all others. The universe could've decided to take a dump on him and given him Manta instead, but instead... crookedly, the hopeful side of him was beginning to feel like the luckiest man in the seas. Almost.

    He counted the seconds it took to pass the time, counted the number of iridescent shells lining the pillar besides him. He knew it was wisest to keep a clear head and remain absolutely neutral, but nothing was working. Maybe he could fake it. Sometimes he could muster a decent poker face depending on the occasion. There were gonna be more of those with the increasing need to act regal...whenever they got back to where they needed to be. Plenty of time to practice until then. So, nodding at her return from the vendor, Arthur straightened his back and again assumed the solemn veneer, and he listened.

    The more Mera spoke, the more he struggled fighting against the impulse to burst into a broad grin—especially the one part where she described waiting for him with his mother...They totally dug each other by then. She even made the first move a couple hours later. Props to that.

    But right. Priorities. Nodding firmly, he began to drift a ways toward a corridor with less traffic so they could converse in private, past underneath an arching stone bridge of the long dilapidated palace. "I got the trident, stashed it nearby. It's safe." Tipping his head toward her, he figured she'd probably want to know where it is, but first there was a bit more to say so he carried on without pause, "Once the Brine was settled, we handled Orm and put him under house arrest. I got to be King for one and a half days before... you know, getting dimension-napped, so Vulko finally had his field day—didn't get much done, but there was peace between the kingdoms and everything was fine last I left it."

    Then Arthur turned to face her fully, and that was when he allowed the smile to break loose. "And you were set to be my Queen," he casually announced. "Well--we would've waited get to know each other more before making it official, but you get the idea."

     
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  7. Mera

    Mera DC Universe

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    There were plenty of scenarios that Mera had thought about in her mind before she ran into Arthur in regard to what she might have missed. Some didn’t have the greatest outcome and she didn’t even want to think about that happening, but with the way Arthur’s demeanor was she could tell that Atlantis was doing just fine. She quietly floated and followed him away from the heavy traffic of the market until they were able to talk without any sort of distraction around them. Her impatience was clearly showing by the way she nervously waited to hear anything hopeful from Arthur to make sure her mind could now be put at ease. Anything that involved him taking the throne was going to be just fine in her book.

    She swam close to him as she listened intently and occasionally nodded her heard. Arthur had seen the battle that took place first hand and she was relieved to hear there wasn’t any big losses for them along the way. The more she listened to her she felt her shoulders relax and she no longer felt like she was practically clenching her fists night in anticipation. Her lips parted to mention her thought that leaving the trident out of his sight was foolish, but her comment faded away from her mind once he mentioned the last part of the catch up efforts.

    Even though she was further back in their timeline, Mera felt a smile quickly form on her face at the comment of her being set with being Queen. Outside of any sort of royal responsibilities, the redhead knew that the man standing across from her was someone quite different than most. He made her laugh, he said things that drove her nuts sometimes, but most importantly she felt like he was someone that would support her through anything. She wasn’t from a place that something like that was fully discussed, but it had been something in the back of her mind the further they went on their journey together.

    “That’s, well… it’s quite the story. I expect to see the trident firsthand to make sure it’s still in one piece,” Mera finally spoke feeling a slight redness in her cheeks beginning to form before she decided to move to press a hand against his shoulder. She focused on looking deeper into his eyes to make sure he understood. “You know I’ll always support you through anything, and being your Queen would be an honor,” she said softly with a smirk forming on her lips, “Pandora is giving us a good way to get to know each other while we wait to go home.”


     
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  8. Arthur Curry

    Arthur Curry DC Universe

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    He had an awareness that, despite technically running into her last year, he'd only really known Mera of Xebel for a few days' time. And that mattered not one bit. There was no imagining anyone more deserving or right who could rule Atlantis at his side. Her engagement to Orm might've been a hidden blessing in that out of the two of them, she was actually prepared for it. Beyond that he'd known girlfriends that he'd definitely admired during their time, he had fought alongside Diana of Themyscira, and he had still never seen a smile as perfect as the one which dawned on Mera's face. He could not have reached where he was without her encouragement, without her dragging him by the hair at times (earlier on...). She was kind, courageous, and wise—so naturally regal; it was a no-brainer.

    So it was nice knowing Mera-two-days-early approved of the news. Maybe the whole situation did make him question whether the Mera who was at his side during those last couple days had already gone through this entire Pandora excursion but got mindwiped before she... returned, somehow. The potential implications brought about their own flavor of troubling, but he had no intentions stressing out over something that far out of his control, and what seemed like should resolve by itself while they waited it out, just as she said. In fact, Arthur lit up like a Christmas tree. Training his amber eyes on her pretty blues, he reached for the hand that settled on his shoulder and lifted it gently, with his own, to press a warm kiss against the fingers.

    Then it was settled. They were going to get to know each other. That was as good of a use for this vacation as anything he'd ever heard.

    "One trident coming right up," Arthur declared. "If a Queen can spare the time to check it out," he added with a broad grin. He released the hand only so that he could begin showing the way with a good-natured backwards glide, starting toward a fathomless precipice and plunge just beyond the outskirts of the Reef palace. At a thought that sprang to mind in the spur of the moment, his dark brows pulled together curiously. "How long've you been here, anyway?"

     
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  9. Mera

    Mera DC Universe

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    Even though it was something out of the ordinary for her, Mera didn’t mind the thought of a break from her duties in Atlantis now. She had been stressed trying to find anyone that might give her an answer on what was happening back home, but Arthur made sure to ease her mind. Xebel always needed something done or a leader to watch their guard, and most of her life revolved around fulfilling her duties. Atlantis would eventually need a Queen to stand at the King’s side and instead of rushing into it, they could take their time. No matter how long they'd be there in Pandora, Mera knew she would be grateful for the time they had there.

    Mera's eyes stayed on Arthur's as he pressed a kiss to her fingers and almost instantly she felt like her fingers were on fire. She shakily moved her hand back to her side and watched as Arthur began moving in the direct of where he was hiding the trident. Instinct in her mind wanted to reach out to him beyond the small gesture that just happened, but her thoughts about the trident were what she used to fight up the urge for the time being.

    The redhead began following him almost seconds later watching the market fade away from her view until Arthur asked his question. "Someone told me it was the beginning of January when I arrived," she explained moving to pick up speed so that she could swim side by side him. The whole situation was still amusing to her, but of all people he would understand why it was so awkward for her. "I tried to make the city work for me, but I just felt so out of place," she admitted, "This at least feels like home in a way."

    It wasn't the familiar seas she grew up travelling through, but her experience was something that made her more comfortable travelling through the waters. She sped forward slightly enough to do a twirl through the water before looking back at him again. Back home her father would have called her something like foolish or childish for doing something like that, but Mera was not going to miss her opportunity to enjoy the water while she still could. "What about you? How long have you been here? Have you... seen anyone else or is it just us?" she asked genuinely curious to see what he had been doing. Watching over the trident didn't appear to be one of them and Mera wasn't sure if she should be concerned or not

     
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  10. Arthur Curry

    Arthur Curry DC Universe

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    The thought of the princess of Xebel trying to make the city work had Arthur looking to her in brow-raising amusement. What did she mean by making it work? Did she get a nine-to-five? A chic apartment with little balcony foliage to complete the picture? The mental picture that painted was kind of adorable, but she had already spun the topic back to him as they maneuvered further from the bustle of the ruins.

    "I've been doing what I usually do, since December," he answered, mulling over the surreality of the time that had lapsed by. Some of it flashed like a blink of an eye; other chunks passed slowly, excruciatingly, as though he were simply waiting for some semblance of meaning to return to him. Fortunately, the latter mostly characterized his first few weeks, after which he'd more or less gotten the hang of things. The more people he encountered, the better it got.

    Which prompted him to her next question. The ocean was quiet now, save for the whispers of the current and the occasional school of fish traveling above them. Ahead, it dipped down into a fathomless precipice: a narrow trench with the sun's rays struggling and waning to piece through to the dark depths. "Nobody from Atlantis, but I've run into people from our earth." He sucked in a breath through his nose. "Sort of. A Green Lantern and a guy named Queen." It was complicated. The Arthur of their world was a blond man, who had also apparently adopted a child with their corresponding Mera.

    Obviously he going to be considerably more interested in the Mera in front of him than in multiversal headaches, so he grinned winsomely right back at her. They'd settled into a comfortable Q&A, and he reckoned it was his turn anyway. "So... you got a job here?" he inquired, extended a hand to her as he floated above the chasm, so they wouldn't lose one another in the descent through darkness.