4654/Another You: Phrygian Gates

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Another You: Phrygian Gates
Date of Scene: 08 January 2021
Location: Themysciran Embassy
Synopsis: Diana speaks to Terry about the cost of revenge.
Cast of Characters: Terry O'Neil, Diana Prince

Terry O'Neil has posed:
A year ago, if you had told Terry O'Neil that he would have a room all too himself, however temporary, at the Themysciran Embassy, he probably would have called the cops on you because you were clearly tripping on bath salts.

And yet, here he is. Never you mind that all he had to do to get here was to have his life (and the lives of his team-mates) endagered by murderous alternate versions of themselves, it was an experience. Regretfully, whatever excitement that might have been derived from this once-in-a-lifetime experience was cut short by loss. His conversation with Nightwing had helped him some, but grief is a non-linear beast, and for whatever step forwards one might take, sometimes you end up taking twice as many back because the heart wants what it wants, and misses what it can't want anymore.

As far as winters in New York goes, this day isn't too bad. The sun is out, for now, even if it can't warm much, but it doesn't seem to be as pale nor the cold as harsh within the welcoming gardens of the Embassy. Terry has spent a lot of time in the garden today, by himself. Whereas the last days have been a whirlwind of people trying to comfort him or wish him well... or doppelgangers that needed to be confronted, today has been exclusively his. He doesn't know the fate of Lois Lane's Doppelganger, that was for Diana and Donna to decide- whether Hippolyta would allow her to be a captive/patient in Themyscira, the only safe place until she could be helped or returned to her own world... and he didn't think about it any more. Not today.

Sitting in a corner of the garden, letting the sun fall on him, he keeps his eyes closed. Earlier today he had left a note for Diana letting him know where he'd be, and told the receptionist it wasn't urgent, and that Diana could receive it when she was no longer busy. As if she ever was not busy. Earbuds in his ears, the repetitive but soothing sounds of John Adams' "Phrygian Gates" fade until they're only a trickle, and he is not sure how much time has passed, except tht when he opens his eyes, the sun seems to be lower in the sky. He hasn't been sleeping well- his dreams are plagued by nightmares and the repeated viewing of a horrific scene he now wishes he hadn't seen all the way through. Thus, he tended to doze slightly during the day at odd times, but never a deep sleep, always just a dip. Like now, and he blearily blinks in the sunlight as he comes out of the reverie and looks around him.

Diana Prince has posed:
Diana, for all her hope for Gar and Terry, was only able to do so much after helping to route out the doppleganger. She'd made sure to tell her every 'appointment' that she was on alert and that she'd possibly need to leave at a moment's notice if anything came up related to the situation. But she still had those responsibilities to attend to, and thusly Terry is given a fair amount of personal time to himself here at the embassy as Diana is out today.

When she does arrive, she only quietly steps in to the area and walks toward him, wearing a brown leather jacket of trendy style, with a black sweater on beneath it, black slacks and heeled brown leather boots that go up to mid-shin height, the Princess just casually strolls toward him.

"Terry." She says, her accented voice soft and calm. "Lovely music." She notes, having little other ways to jump right in to a conversation with the young man.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
Terry awakens fully with a start when he notices someone walking up to him. Since he is blinking against the sun, all he can see at first is a figure vaguely defined by the halo of light against which it has to compete, but once it passes the sun, there is no mistaking the silhouette.

"Princess Diana! Er... I think I dozed off. Was I ... snoring loudly?" he says, giving a nervous glance around just in case he did snore and it was loud enough to disturb the peace of any garden dweller. In truth, he hadn't been sleeping deeply enough to even get to that level yet. He looks exhausted. At least he isn't cold, bundled up as he is in a rust-colored sweater that almost matches the hue of his hair, violating the unspoken agreement of gingers everywhere.

Diana Prince has posed:
Diana's eyes go to him as he rouses and she offers him a faint smile, her eyelashes flutter a bit due to the chilled winter wind that rolls through the courtyard. She gives him a moment to adjust before she takes a seat on the edge of a small stone outcropping just a few feet away. The Princess' hands come together above her knees, palms flat together.

"You do know that you are not relegated to simply staying out here, yes?" She asks him, giving a quick look around the courtyard of the embassy, the three story tall building looming around and above them, but the courtyard offering a nice calming ambience to certainly rest in--if it weren't winter.

"It is rather chilly, after all." But after saying that, Diana's eyes go back to his own and she settles herself a bit with a small forward-backward motion. "Have the rest of the Titans seen the security footage?" She asks then.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
Terry gives diana a tired, faint smile. "When weary of spirit and tired of mind, seek to live in accordance with Gaia, that she may indicate in your innermost silence the way by which you may regain your road." The quote is very much paraphrased, but Diana would immediately recognize a quote by Amara, one of the philosophers of the Amazons, which would indicate Terry has been flipping through some of the translated books in the library at some point.

He sits up and stuffs his hands in his pockets, feeling the chill in his fingertips. "It's a little. Yeah. But it's better than laying in bed," he admits, "At least out here I can control what goes through my mind..." and that horrific scene causes him to shudder.

"I know Robin has seen it. I know others only heard of it and chose not to see it. Harley came by to check on me yesterday. She believes Gar's alive. So does Kori. Colette... thinks it might be a possiblity. NIghtwing was more philosophical." He exhales a little. "I like the idea of hope but I'm scared to hope." He glances over at Diana, and then looks up at the open skies above. "I didn't even think about it until now but... he could be up there, flying. If he spotted me, he could just descend on me and I wouldn't even know it."

Diana Prince has posed:
Diana is a good listener, possibly the best, she picks up on his paraphrased quote and responds to it with merely a smile. Diana's connection to her island in the way of how she personally speaks on those kinds of things is often something she keeps close to her chest. She's a very public person about almost everything in her life, but her connection to the important influences of those from her homeland... is one of few things she speaks on in sparse moments, usually when she feels it can have the greatest impact.

Right now she just smiles to Terry, listens, and then glances to the sky when he does before she looks back to him and leans forward to engage him more directly and re-acquire his eyes on to her own.

"Do not let this bad person control your emotions. He is not the pilot of your destiny, Terry." She tells him, voice soften. "Nor the gatekeeper of your Hope. Our Gar is strong, capable, and above all else, the kind of person who would want our emotions to be as positive as possible. Yours especially. His existence, in whatever form it is right now, remains as ever-dedicated to that."

She pauses then and straightens once more. "What brings you here specifically today?" She then asks him. "Are tensions yet high at the tower?"

Terry O'Neil has posed:
"He almost did take control of me," Terry muses, looking back down to Diana. He doesn't immediately answer to what she says about Gar, but addresses the topic of the tower. "Well... the tower is more or less on soft lockdown. Only those who have to be there need to- like Nadia, working in her laboratory. Kara because she's..." he gestures. Supergirl is Supergirl, and she no longer has a Doppelganger to look out for. "And Donna..." because, again, no Doppelganger. "Vic is reinforcing defenses, probably, and Wally is Wally. The rest of us are either at the hotel Nightwing reserved or here..." with Donna having secured accomodations at the Embassy. "I feel a lot safer here than in a hotel. Anyone crazy enough to attack a group of super kids /and/ a whole bunch of Amazons deserves what they get." He almost smiles.

"He almost did. Take control of me, I mean. If it hadn't been for you, I would have cut him open from stem to stern... and he'd have won. But you had to stop me- and he got away, so he still won." He closes his eyes and rubs his forehead, "I fucked it up so much..." one eye snaps open. "Screwed it up. I screwed it up."

Diana Prince has posed:
Diana's eyes are on him throughout his admissions to her, and she even reacts to his words at the end about how he was the reason Evil Gar got away. She smirks at him, big smirk. "You didn't." She says softly. "You reacted as anyone with an emotional connection to someone who suffered such a fate would. I have reacted similarly to things in my past of the same nature. Dramatic moments, garner dramatic actions. It is part of being human, and to deny those emotions... well... it is challenging, even for me."

She refocuses her gaze upon him and smiles more openly. "You are welcome to stay here then. There is a room between Cassie's and Donna's that is open, just as posh and lovely as theirs. If you wish to stay here, then you can consider it yours, for as long as you should so desire."

Terry O'Neil has posed:
Terry smiles at that, "The rooms here are lovely. I've never stayed anywhere like it... and I don't really have anywhere outside of the tower. I lost my apartment when we were lost in space, and mom's left the house to stay at a hotel until the doppelganger thing passes because that's /the/ place where her doppleganger, or mine, would go." And then he looks incredibly sad.

"Gar and I signed a lease for a new apartment. We were going to move in together..." sniffle. "Right across from Lois, in fact. Because she doesn't think I'm enough of a weirdo yet..." He laughs a little through the tears, and rubs his eyes. "I've only known him for eight months, we've been together for about three. How can someone I've only known for so little mean so much to me? And how fair is it that he could be gone just like that?"

He shakes his head. "Sometimes I wonder what would've happened if I'd never left Wonderland, you know? That is, if /he/ had never... it's complicated."

Diana Prince has posed:
"If your mother needs a secure place to stay, we can make arrangements for that as well." Diana tells Terry next. "I have other places in Manhattan and Metropolis. I still have my apartments from before I ... took on the mantle of Wonder Woman, so to speak." She glances to him and offers another faint smile before her eyes drop as he speaks of loving someone after such little time, and losing them. There's a faint smile that comes from this before she looks back over and up to him, with her head still tilted forward ever so slightly.

"Love does not hold itself to any specific time frame. Nor does it listen to you when and if you demand things of it. Love breaks through any barriers that you may try to place around it to conceal it, to cover it up and mask it." She shakes her head very slightly while speaking of this. "It is ... its own creature, one that will both torture you, and lift you up to the highest peaks of happiest we can possibly experience." She pauses then, and her gaze goes back to Terry's own. "We do not know that Gar is gone forever, our Gar. Just as we did not know that you were gone, when you and the others ventured in to the great cosmic beyond..." She reaches out then to put a hand on to his nearest forearm. "Have faith, have Hope, Terry. Do not let a monster take those things from you, for they are the antidote to dread and despair."

Terry O'Neil has posed:
Terry exhales slowly, doing his best to calm the thing that gnaws at him. "Faith and hope seem so... much easier when your chest doesn't feel like there's something wounded in it, doesn't it?" he smiles a little. "When I first met Gar... he was wounded. Inside, I mean. So were many of the other Titans. And with what /gall/ did I think that I could help ... I, who had never lost anyone close in my life! I mean... gran died, but she was old and I was too small to really understand. April's parents died but I never got to be as close to them as I was to her because..."

He sighs, "Stupid family resentment. Mom and her brother. It's a miracle they decided to put their baggage aside so Ape and I could just be kids together." He shakes his head. "But... Donna and Gar and Vic and Raven had all lost people they were close to, and I'd never /felt/ that. So I'd meddle and prod and push people together in the hopes that maybe it could help..."

And then he grows quieter. "All that time, was I selling their feelings short because I couldn't really understand, had never been through, that kind of loss?"

"I wish I could tell him I love him one last time. And that I'm sorry because I wasn't there. If I had been there, he wouldn't have... that wouldn't have happened to him. But... I can't do anything about that. Robin thinks I can't do anything right."

His face grows serious now. "You saved me. You saved me from myself. From making a /serious/ mistake I wouldn't have come back from. Robin wants to kill him... and I can't let that happen." He glances at Diana. "Because no matter what... that /is/ Gar. He grew up in a nightmare, had his freedom stripped from him, made to do atrocious things, and then left to survive in a horror zone. If none of those things had happened... he'd be like my Gar. He has murdered someone, and he needs to answer for his actions... but... does he really need to pay with his life? In a way... isn't he a victim as much as my Gar was? Am I..." he shakes his head and chuckles, "Am I crazy for thinking like that?"

Diana Prince has posed:
Diana's eyes are on Terry up to the point where he asks that last question and it's then that her stare goes down to her own hands that are resting in front of her knees where she's seated on the edge of a stone wall in the courtyard beside him.

"Taking a life is not something that comes lightly." She says softly as she looks at her palms. "I have done it, many times, and I will likely do it again too." She looks up at him again then and there. "I only do it when I feel that all other options have been exhausted. It is not something I take pride in, not by any other means... and, you are right. He is a version of our Gar. He is just a version of our Gar who has lived years upon years not knowing the warm embrace of the relative peace and safety that we are graced with having in our world."

"But that does not give him a free pass to wreck havoc and death upon our world. He has to be given a chance to do the right thing, but if he is caught in a place where he is threatening the lives of others, and refuses to submit to our call for peace... he may very well forfeit his right to life. It is the way of a warrior, a true warrior for peace and justice."

She pauses a moment before continuing, after a light sigh. "We will do everything in our power to see to it that this Gar knows that we are offering him a place of peace, unlike what he is used to. But it may very well be such a foreign concept to him that he will refuse to believe us, or possibly even understand our offer. But... we have to try, for many reasons, none apart from what we know his soul is truly capable of being, under better circumstances."

Terry O'Neil has posed:
"Or... if he will not live in peace in our world," he says carefully, "Then he will go back to his. Robin wants revenge. Gar would have /never/ wanted that. I have to stop Robin and get him to listen to me. And if he won't listen to me..." He frowns, "Then I will send him to a deserted island in the Caribbean while I deal with this Gar. That should delay him for at least... an hour." Because this is a Robin, after all. He probably has a GPS tracker somewhere in his cranium that lets Batman know where to send the Batwing.

"Because, well..." He slowly begins to stand up, "Don't kill if you can wound. Don't wound if you can subdue..." the beginning of a quote that he has come to know by heart.

Diana Prince has posed:
Diana doesn't seem to be too fond of the use of the word 'revenge' as she knows the dark places that actions like that can lead to. When she watches Terry stand up she softly nods to him and straightens up in her seated position. "The others will likely take great heed in your desires in all of this. Let Robin know that revenge is not the solution to this situation, it is only the start of other problems, that much I can promise you. It will help keep those feeling in-check inside of him, if he can see you, Gar's closest, believing in such response to all of this."

Diana then moves to stand up herself. She now offers Terry a smile. "Come, I will show you the room that you can call your own." She turns toward the north where the pathway leads back in through the double doors of the courtyard's main entrance. "And if your family members are in need of help as well, you need but ask for it." She offers to him.