Carrie

TT4.87b: Trapped

PREVIOUSLY: Frank caught Carrie up on everything. Then Glen told Carrie why she can’t save her mother.

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PART 87b: TRAPPED

She had allowed the time stream to coalesce about her, had been about to pinpoint her mother and jump to her, which was when…

“Carrie, when your mother was taken, she was pregnant.”

The water became deathly cold. Cracks formed in the scene around her, and then the image shattered, leaving Carrie standing back in the small airport lounge, staring at Glen. With a twisting in her gut. “No,” she whispered. A reflex word, because deep down, she knew it to be the truth.

Things were starting to make sense.

“I’m sorry,” Glen said. He looked around. “Carrie, maybe we can still run away together.”

That time in the hospital, when she had felt like she and her mother couldn’t both exist, because of a strain on the time streams… it had actually been because she and a sibling couldn’t both exist. One person with temporal powers was bad enough, to have two?! Insanity. Why had nobody ever told her this?

“My Dad… did he…”

Glen shook his head. “He didn’t know. Elaine was barely a month along, I’m not sure if she even suspected.” He continued to look around nervously. “Carrie, please, we need to get out of here.”

The repercussions continued to wash over her. If she saved her mother, all she was doing was pushing her fate onto her unborn brother or sister. Removing herself from the timeline as a child wouldn’t fix things either. The future could simply try again, with someone else. How could she do that? How could she make someone else suffer in the same way that she was suffering here? How could she make a SIBLING suffer that way? Was the path forwards with Glen truly the only one?

Glen pulled at her arm. “Carrie…”

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TT4.87a: The Plain Truth

PREVIOUSLY: Carrie went back in time to save her mother. Frank has caught up to her at the Miami airport.

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PART 87a: THE PLAIN TRUTH

Carrie’s back

Frank ignored everyone else in the Miami airport, devoting all his attention to not losing sight of Carrie. After all, this might be their only chance – and she was angling for an ‘Employees Only’ door. He shoved the walkie-talkie back in his pocket and got a grip on the belt of his slightly-too-large pants as he ran. He pushed past someone, mumbling an apology.

The door Carrie was aiming for seemed to open in front of her as she arrived, and she charged through it at full sprint. Frank tried to sprint himself, reaching out and catching the door before it could swing shut. He burst through, spotting Carrie down the passageway.

“Carrie!” he called out, risking the shout now that they were out of the main area. “Carrie, wait, we’re in another timeline!”

“Frank, stop,” Carrie said.

Except she hadn’t said it – the voice had come from behind him. He spun as the door closed, revealing… Carrie. Another Carrie. Except this one was dressed differently. She was wearing a white blouse with a blue business suit, her hair having been gathered up underneath a flight hat. Which made her look much like Elaine Waterson had, moments ago. “Carrie, what–”

Frank stopped, for as he turned back to look at the prior Carrie, she disappeared. One second she was there, then there was a flash of light which made him blink, and then… nothing. Empty hallway. Of course, Frank realized – she’d escaped through time, to become the Carrie in the business suit, who was here now. Frank turned back to her. “Carrie?”

“You couldn’t stop her,” Carrie observed. “Maybe you can’t stop me either. But I have questions. So many questions.”

“H-How far back did you just go?”

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TT4.86b: M. I. A.

PREVIOUSLY: To figure out the Miami International Airport, the time group split up – Laurie, Tim and Mindy in one group, Frank and Glen in the other.

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PART 86b: M.I.A.

M.I.A. (in 2014)

“I don’t think we’re getting a boarding pass unless someone buys a ticket,” Laurie sighed, watching Mindy talk to the airline receptionist.

Tim poked her arm. “Or maybe it’s only…” He used both hands to slip on the sunglasses he was holding. “A matter of ‘time’. Yeeeeaaaaaahhhh?”

Laurie slapped a hand over her mouth to keep from laughing. “Tim! Ohmigod, no, we have to stay serious. Also, I hated that CSI show. The original was better.”

Tim pulled the shades back off. “S-Sorry, couldn’t resist. And you seemed really tense.” He glanced over towards Mindy, then back to Laurie. “Tense is not good. Understandable, b-but maybe you need to try to relax?”

Laurie pulled her hands back to her sides, her eyes again on Mindy. “No. Carrie’s in trouble. Frank’s trusted us to keep track of Mindy. I can’t screw that up. I can’t relax.” Her fingers curled.

Tim shook his head. “Laurie, if you wind yourself up too tight, you’ll crash, like you–” He winced, but couldn’t think of another way to end the sentence. “Well, like Chartreuse said you have before. I’m sure you’ll d-do your best, we all will, but if the unexpected happens… d-don’t beat yourself up, okay? If there’s one thing I’ve found out about our time group, it’s that n-nothing really goes according to plan.”

The redhead nibbled on her lower lip. “Right.”

“You’re d-doing good here,” Tim assured her. “Give yourself permission to smile at my lousy j-jokes.”

The corner of Laurie’s mouth twitched up. Which was when the walkie talkie she was holding crackled to life. Her arm jerked up. “Yes?” she gasped, mashing the talk button.

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TT4.80a: Vanishing Act

PREVIOUSLY: Chartreuse knows something is up with Carrie, but not what. Carrie will have destroyed a time travel chip, and may be destined to leave town.

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PART 80a: VANISHING ACT

minibannernewChartreuse entered the classroom she’d been invited to after school, to find Carrie sitting behind the teacher’s desk. She took a second to appreciate the fact that her temporal friend had asked to meet in the same room where they had ‘interfaced’ during September’s dance before closing the door and setting her books by the chalkboard. “So, is class in session?”

Carrie looked up. “I hope not. Because I don’t seem to have the right answers today.”

It was just the two of them. As Chartreuse approached, Carrie stood and walked around the desk to meet her. “Chartreuse…” Her fists clenched and she looked down at her feet. “Damn it. What I SHOULD tell you here is that I don’t care about you, and that I never have, so that you can get over your feelings. Because where I’m going, I can’t take you with me.”

“Carrie?”

“Except I can’t say that, I can’t, because I’m scared Chartreuse, I’m SO scared about how things might play out, and you’re the only one who knows about everything that I’ve seen and done and…”

She looked back up then, and she was so close to tears that Chartreuse didn’t even think about it. She reached out to grab Carrie in the biggest, tightest hug that she could manage. Carrie sobbed then, and after a moment, her hands slipped around Chartreuse’s sides to hug back.

Chartreuse closed her eyes, preferring to let her other senses capture the moment. The feel of how Carrie’s body was pressed up against her. The scent of whatever fragrance her friend was wearing. The sound of the quiet sobs of the girl she’d fallen for.

Alas, she knew the moment was bittersweet. To the point where, when Carrie finally released her, and started to draw back, Chartreuse nearly didn’t let her.

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TT4.78a: Cheer Up

PREVIOUSLY: Glen gave mental suggestions to others, trying to do away with a chip Julie had created, meant to restore the time machine. Instead of Lee getting the chip, a future Carrie appeared to destroy it.

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PART 78a: CHEER UP

minibannernewThere were two major announcements at school on Monday morning. The first was that Glen would no longer be the bass player for Corry’s band. While there was some confusion within the school about that, it at least made sense to Chartreuse. After all, given what Tim had said on the phone about the conflict he and Lee had experienced with the redhead on the weekend, not to mention the audacity of Glen mind controlling their friends, they could hardly keep working together in a band. Not in any amicable way.

The second announcement was that Laurie would be acting as the head cheerleader until further notice. That was the announcement that didn’t make sense to Chartreuse. Not because it was Laurie – she knew better than anyone how much her friend had been going all out this year, even sketching diagrams of possible new routines for the team that week Carrie had been in hospital – but because giving up the lead ran against Carrie’s nature. More to the point, the timing implied a temporal connection that she couldn’t see, again based on the weekend’s events.

Chartreuse knew Carrie could avoid her at the end of the school day, if she chose. Their timetables were almost a match – except last period, when Chartreuse had Physics while Carrie was in Drama. So the mystic girl made a point of standing outside the Art room at the end of lunch, before that class started, reaching out for Carrie when her friend arrived moments before the bell.

“Carrie…”

“Chartreuse, not today,” Carrie sighed, evading the outstretched arm.

“Carrie, please don’t make me do a reading. I want to help, and Laurie’s, you know, my friend too. Where is this headed?”

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TT4.75b: More Questioning

PREVIOUSLY: Julie told Clarke’s sister that she had a way to not cut herself off completely. Chartreuse struggled with how to admit her feelings to Carrie.

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PART 75b: MORE QUESTIONING

minibannernewClarke followed Tim upstairs to his bedroom. “You know, we could simply talk down in the living room,” he suggested.

Tim shook his head. “All discussions with L-Luci about L-Linquist’s l-language have been in my room. M-Might as well keep the weirdness confined to that part of the house.”

Clarke frowned. “What’s Julie doing that’s weird?”

“Nothing. S-Sorry, that’s not what I m-meant…” Tim pushed open the door to his room then gestured at his desk chair, moving to sit on the edge of his bed. Clarke closed the door after them before sitting. “It’s just, everything’s kinda connected,” Tim finished. “And I don’t want m-my parents walking in at a bad time.”

“Right. Okay.” Clarke rubbed his neck. It felt like they should ease into the conversation. “So, how are your studies?”

Tim smiled. “Fine. Also, Julie appreciated your birthday card.”

Or Tim could cut to the chase for him. “She… said that?”

“Not at first,” Tim admitted. “I’m still trying to understand her m-mannerisms. Her exact words were, ‘At least he didn’t send a gift too’, but she seemed flustered. The way L-Luci gets sometimes when explaining to me about a l-linguistic time travel thing that once included Frank.”

“Ah. And her parents, did they…”

“They d-didn’t do anything. They d-didn’t even come back to town this year. Jeeves got Julie a cake, that seemed to be enough.”

“Right,” Clarke said, feeling relieved. He’d hated the idea of not being there for Julie while her parents were around. A thought occurred. “How much has she told you anyway? About her family?”

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