Shipping up to Boston
The Accused is Forgiven
Galena throws the sheets off her bed and stomps down to Thrice’s room. She pounds on the door, crosses her arms, and waits for Thrice to respond.
Thrice slowly scrambles out of bed. His quickly opens the door, gun at the ready. He lowers the gun as he notices Galena, “Hey,” he sleepily says as he sees her expression, “what’s wrong?”
Galena shoves the door open and walks in, slamming the door behind her. She wheels around and glares at Thrice. “What have you done to me? What did that spirit know that I obviously don’t remember?”
Thrice: Woah now Galena. I haven’t done anything to you.
Galena: Oh, please. Clearly I’m missing something…some memory…
Thrice slowly puts his gun on his night stand while his concerned eyes stay on Galena. “What makes you say that?”
Galena: “That spirit seemed awfully convinced that there was…something…between us at some point. And the connection to that,” she points to the chain hanging from his neck. “What does that have to do with me?”
Thrice casually grips his chain as he looks away, "It’s for our protection. "
Galena: Oh, so now you did do something…
Thrice: Yes, but nothing terrible.
Galena: I see. So you can just do whatever you want to others and expect them to be ok with it when you tell them it was nothing terrible. That’s great. What I think I remember is that we’ve trusted each other in the past. Right now, I’m not sure if that’s been real or not…
Thrice’s eyes start to water as he gazed at the ring, “I would never do anything to harm you, you’re…my friend. I’m not some monster that some people think I am.”
Galena: God, I don’t even know what to believe. I remember you as my friend, but how can I know if that’s even true?
Thrice: “It is true, we are friends.” He slumps down onto his bed.
Galena paces around the room. “I don’t know what I thought I’d get from this conversation. If I’m questioning anything from my…our…past, I’m apparently going to question it all.” She stops and puts her hand over her forehead, eyes closed, almost wincing. “Did I at least know that something was going to happen to me?”
Thrice: No…it was something I had to decide for myself.
Galena sighs. “Great.”
Thrice: It was for everyone’s protection.
Galena: How can removing something I remember protect anyone? Obviously you still remember…
Thrice: I…can’t really tell you.
Galena sighs again with frustration. “Of course you can’t.”
Thrice: One day you’ll understand, I just have to stay on my path.
Galena: What path is that, exactly?
Thrice: “The path where I resisted what happened earlier…” He scoffs and says in a noble sounding voice, “For the greater good”. He pauses. “I mean…I don’t what I can say that will make you less pissed.”
Galena: I’m not really sure either…I just feel lost right now, not knowing what I even know anymore.
Thrice: Nothing has really changed, I can tell you that much.
Galena: How is that possible? I feel like everything is different. Is it at least worth what I lost?
Thrice: We are alive, so yes.
Galena looks at him, actually seeing him for the first time since she came in. “The situation was that bad?”
Thrice nods as he absent mindedly holds his side, “Very.”
Galena takes a deep, slightly calming breath. “I guess I know you well enough to know that. Are the memories that I have the real ones? Nothing was altered, just some things removed?”
Thrice: From what I know mostly removal and very little altering. Wasn’t me who did it.
Galena: …Can they be trusted?
Thrice: I hope so, I didn’t have any other options
Thrice: …wish I could tell you more
Galena: Me too.
Thrice sighs as he fumbles the ring around his hands. “I’m just glad that spirit was silenced before it put our lives in more danger.”
Galena sits down on the floor and watches Thrice’s hands sadly. “Was that really…from me?”
Thrice holds up the ring, "This? No. "
Galena looks confused. So, why the connection? I saw it…
Thrice: The connection is no lie but it’s from my friend.
Galena: “Well, I’m glad…I think…to know some of what the spirit said. I feel some better about things, even if I’m still confused.” She blushes. “I’m sorry I barged in here like that…I’m not normally like that…”
Thrice: It’s…okay Galena, can’t blame you.
Galena: Well, I’m not completely blameless…I should have just asked.
Thrice: “Still. You know you can come to me if you have any questions.” He holds back a chuckle as he blushes, “just leave the police tape far away.”
Galena smirks at him. “You think I need police tape…?”
Thrice blushes deeper and takes a small step back. Galena smiles at him. “The spirit’s gone…you’re safe.” Thrice lets out a sigh of relief.
Galena: It’s not like that normally…to me, we’re just friends, I suppose.
Thrice stretches causing his shirt to lift up revealing a long jagged scar on his side. Galena’s eyes widen upon seeing the scar. “When did that happen?” Thrice looks down, “oh right…that.”
Galena: Like you could just forget that?
Thrice: That was during the raid on Abel’s compound.
Galena: Holy shit…I really wish you’d taken me too.
Thrice: “I was fine…” He seems to space out, thinking of the past. “Glad you didn’t go, it was a slaughter house.”
Galena: That hardly looks like ‘fine’. I could have helped…
Thrice: Not everybody made it out…
Thrice: The rest of the team.
Galena: All of them? What in the world…?
Thrice: Me and two others made it out of ten.
Galena: I’m so sorry. I wish I could have been there.
Thrice’s eyes seemed far away, “You could’ve died, I mean I almost did.”
Galena: I could have, and you could have…but more on our side might have meant that more got out alive.
Thrice: There were too many, anti magic field. We fell perfectly into his trap.
Galena: We’ll get him someday. I can’t wait to see the life leave his body.
Thrice: He won’t be bothering us for sometime.
Galena: I hope not. But I do want to be there when it ends for him.
Thrice: “Me too.” Thrice eyes the ring, “but we are safe, for now.”
Galena: I think we got out without leaving a trail. Wonder how the others are faring…
Thrice: Honestly I don’t care. But I’m sure they’re fine.
Galena: I wonder about Overman, and worry for Dio. But that’s all.
Thrice: So…what all do you remember?
Galena: Well, the Cabal, all of the issues with them…you threatening Rameses, cleaning up after lust spirit #1, the frat parties, issues with Dio’s mom, The Lucid, the werewolf and Noctys. We went to the Amazon and DC, and took care of business there…
Thrice: Okay, so everything is there.
Galena: Well, that’s good to know…
Thrice: Just want to reassure you Galena.
Galena: I appreciate that…It’s a little disconcerting…
Thrice smirks. “Well, I would love to forget what happened at the compound.”
Galena: Well, apparently you know someone who can make that happen…
Thrice: “Meh, she’s to pricey. Besides I’m pretty sure I would freak out of I didn’t remember these.” On that Thrice lifts up his shirt revealing multiple scars, all very close to his center.
Galena: I hate to even ask the price… And yes, it would be even weirder to not remember all that. What did he do to you?
Thrice: I pretty sure I couldn’t tell what I paid. Just bullet wounds and stabbings.
Galena sighs. “I hate you had to pay anything. And ‘just’ bullet wounds and stabbings…geez…you need to stop getting in the line of fire. Too close to death too many times.”
Thrice smirks as he pulls down his shirt. “Safety is worth any price.” He chuckles, “yeah…me and Death are good ol’ buds.”
Galena: …so we’re protected from him because of what you did?
Galena: For how long?
Thrice: As long as I stay on a certain path.
Galena: Oh. Do we have other options? What if we were to intentionally go after Abel?
Thrice: Not really. I guess if we did that the deal might break.
Galena: But if we eliminated the problem…
Thrice: IF we eliminated the problem, that’s a big if.
Galena: We will…someday…there has to be a way.
Thrice: “Maybe…” He smirks, “honestly thought you were going to slap me when you first came in.”
Galena: Fortunately, I was so mad I couldn’t think of doing anything but yelling at you…
Thrice: I’m glad.
Galena: Me too…wouldn’t want to feel even worse than I already do.
Galena: I’m sorry too…I had everything wrong, and should have known better.
Thrice: “It’s okay, Galena.” He pats her shoulder briefly.
Galena looks down at the floor. “So, where do…we…go from here? What do I need to do?”
Thrice shrugs, “What do you mean?”
Galena: Well, obviously I need to keep my distance.
Thrice cocks his head. “How do you get that?”
Galena: It just seemed that way from what you were saying about this path you have to stay on…
Thrice: “Oh?” He sits on his bed. “Please…explain.”
Galena: Well, what you said about resisting earlier…I don’t know. Just seemed like it’s difficult for me to be around? Or too close?
Thrice absent-mindedly nods. “Right, right. Definitely gonna be more difficult after that little…incident”
Thrice blushes as he looks away. “It’s…okay…”
Galena: How can I help?
Thrice softly laughs. “I have no idea.” He eyes his ring and mumbles something.
Galena looks at him questioningly. “Huh?”
Thrice whispers in Atlantean, “Sacrifice.”
Galena: You’ve certainly made your share of them…
Thrice slowly walks over to his mini fridge, pulls out a bottle of liquor, and waves it to Galena. “Care for a drink?”
Galena: Sure, thanks.
Thrice pulls out two short glasses, plops some ice in each, pours some of the amber liquor in the glasses, and walks back to bed while handing Galena a glass
Galena smiles. “Thank you.”
Thrice raises his glass, “Cheers.”
Galena raises hers, nods, and takes a sip. She has a look of slight amusement on her face, but keeps her comments to herself. As Thrice downs the alcohol he looks to Galena, “Please,” he waves his hand around, “you’re among friends.” She drains her glass as well. The burn makes her wince a bit. “Not used to it straight…”
Thrice: Bah you’ll be fine.
Galena: Heh, you know it doesn’t take much.
Thrice: “Please I won’t do anything.” He spoke as he quickly poured himself another glass.
Galena: I didn’t figure you would…
Thrice: “Exactly.” Offers the bottle to Galena.
She takes it and tops off her glass. She hands the bottle back to Thrice, and takes another sip. She cringes, “Yep…definitely better to drink it all at once.” She empties the second glass.
Thrice’s eyes widen, “The little lady seems to hold her liquor.” He downs his second glass.
Galena: Hardly…just tastes better quickly…
Thrice: “Ah.” He pours himself a third glass.
Galena: Apparently you can hold yours…
Thrice points his finger at her while holding his glass, “You bet.” He looks at the bottle then to Galena.
She hesitates. “Alright, but this is it. My face is already warm…” She fills her third glass, adds some more ice, and holds it to her cheek. After a few seconds, she tips it back and finishes it.
Thrice holds his hands up, “No pressure here miss.”
Galena raises an eyebrow at him…“Miss?”
Thrice: Would you prefer madam? Malady?
Galena giggles. “Neither, please.”
Thrice slinks down onto his bed. “Very well…don’t say I didn’t try.”
Galena smirks. “Duly noted.”
Thrice sips on his glass as he places the bottle down. Galena continues to cool her face with her ice filled glass. She giggles again. “This is why I don’t usually drink…”
Thrice smiles. “It’s okay. Kinda cu-nice.”
Galena’s eyes dart over to him as he corrects his words. His eyes go to his glass, his face red…either from the drink or his comment.
Galena: Should I go?
Thrice shrugs as he sips his liquor.
Thrice: “Sorry,” he says between sips.
Galena: It’s ok…I just want to help if I can…
Thrice: I wish you could. But you can’t…not anymore
Galena: What do you mean?
As Thrice finishes his drink his hand goes to his head. “I’ve said too much.”
Galena: Actually, the contrary…
Thrice: I can’t risk the deal.
Galena: “I know.” Her words are quiet and are slightly slurred. “I suppose I’ll leave you for tonight.” She stands up and stops for a moment since the world started spinning. “Again, I’m sorry for barging in here.” She pauses. “And for yelling at you…and for accusing you of things…”
Thrice’s head hangs low, “It’s okay.”
Galena: You alright?
Thrice slightly raises his head revealing his red watery eyes, “just peachy.”
Galena extends a hand to wipe away a tear, but stops just short of Thrice’s face. Instead, she places her hand on his shoulder, and squeezes gently. “Night.”
Thrice nods as he puts up the bottles and glasses, “Thanks for stopping by.”
Galena: Heh…anytime…hopefully the next time will start better…
Thrice manages a weak smile, “Yeah.”
Galena: “Oh, to hell with it…” She stops in the doorway and turns around. “What can I do?”
Thrice looks up to her with watery eyes. “I don’t know.”
Galena: Well, I’m not going to leave you like this. Did I say something wrong?
Thrice sniffs as he stands up. “Just…Just…what do you want to know?” He stumbles.
Galena grabs his arm as he stumbles to steady him, and helps him sit back on the bed. “Be right back.” She leaves the room for a few minutes and comes back with coffee and a couple of mugs. “Maybe this will help a little.” She fills the mugs and hands one to Thrice. “Cheers,” she says with a smirk. After drinking some coffee, she says, “All I want to know is what I can do to help you.”
Thrice sniffs it, takes a sip, and looks to Galena. “Make this deal go away but us still be safe.”
Galena: So…we have to end Abel?
Thrice: Yeah…and his gang, but they could be in hiding now.
Galena: Well, we still have contacts…I’m sure Athena could help us out with that.
Galena: I’m sure it’s something that’ll take time.
Thrice: A lot of time.
Galena: If that’s what it takes, I’m in. What else can I do?
Thrice shrugs as he takes another sip, “I don’t know Galena. I just…sometimes wish for stuff before all this.” He holds his cup with one hand and leans against the other which lands on her hand. He quickly, with a red face, moves his hand.
Galena looks down and swaps the coffee cup to the other hand. “I wish I remembered.”
Thrice smirks, “Not missing much…”
Galena tilts her head questioningly….“oh?”
Thrice: “I…I..wish I could say.” He bites his lip as he looks around his room.
Galena turns her attention to her coffee, swirling it around in the mug. “Well, I don’t want your sacrifice to have been in vain. I know you did too much.”
Thrice: Meh, hasn’t been too bad so far.
Galena: I hope not.
Galena: Feeling any better?
Thrice smiles. “Alil”
Galena smiles back at him. “Good.”
Thrice: “Yea.” He looks at his ring. “Amazing what this thing can get ya.”
Galena: What do you mean?
Thrice: “This,” he holds up the ring, “is me.”
Galena: …I don’t follow…
Thrice smirks. “It’s my soul, at least a part of it.”
Thrice softly laughs. “Yeah.”
Galena: So…the connection between me and the ring…are my memories bound in there somehow…like the ring that Dio had?
Thrice: “That is correct.” He turns to Galena.
Galena keeps her eyes on the ring. A look of sadness and longing crosses over her face. “It’s hard to wrap my head around that…so strange that something that should be here,” she points to her head, “is there,” she points to the ring.
Thrice: Yeah. “Those memories…” He seems to space out.
Galena waits and just watches his face as he reminisces, trying to read his emotions. After a few moments, she says softly, “I guess you have it worse than I do. Up until a few hours ago, I had no idea I was missing anything”
Thrice sighs. “Fuck it, it was you I gave up.”
Galena: “…What do you mean…?” As the words come out, her mind is filled with images from their past. At first, it seems as though she’s watching from afar as she sees herself in the Black Widow costume. She sees Thrice’s face as he was under the influence of the first lust spirit. That image fades, and is replaced with Thrice smiling at her during ammunition therapy at the Adamantine Arrow shooting range. After that, the images seem more real, and flash by quickly: Tending bar together during the frat parties, all the late night texting, the night at the Recorders’ house…that mental hug…then the real one, the conversation about the Daimons. The final image is of her finding the door of the attic in their old sanctum locked. The memory fades as her hand reaches out to destroy the lock. She is overwhelmed with the connection they shared, and all of the emotions washing over her. “Oh…” Her face breaks out into a huge grin, and she lunges towards him, wrapping her arms around him.
Thrice is stunned for a moment then wraps his arms around Galena.
Galena: “Not missing much, my ass…”
Thrice smiles, “I’m a terrible liar.”
Galena: I noticed. Well, at least now I do…
Thrice: “Yeah.” Thrice looked down to the ring still hanging on the chain, the inscription was gone but the ring was still whole.
Galena: So…what consequences does breaking the deal have?
Thrice: If you remember then Abel remembers.
Galena: …oh…well, hopefully we got far enough away?
Galena: Well, we’ll take that as it comes. At least this time we’ll handle whatever happens together.
Thrice: Yeah. Who knows how long it will take him to find us.
Galena: Yeah. We should be good for awhile. It’s not like we had any
connection to Boston previously. Hopefully he doesn’t have contacts here, either.
Thrice: “Hopefully yeah…” He still seems to be soaking everything in. “I just…what do I…we do now?”
Galena: What do you mean?
Thrice’s hands move between both of them, “Us”
Galena pulls back a little to look at him. “This is what you wanted, right?”
Thrice: “Of course it is,” he chuckles, “I mean you get to pop back all memory intact while I have to adjust for a year long distance.”
Galena: Hmm…didn’t think about that. It’s up to you then.
Thrice: “It’ll take some time, but it’ll work.” He holds her hands softly.
Galena smiles and squeezes his hands gently. “I’m with you, then.”
Thrice: I have to go and apologize to Her soon.
Thrice: Death, she will not be pleased. That and I have to get my soul back, kind of attached to it.
Galena: Death did this for you? I hope she gives it back… Can I help?
Thrice: Nah, it was my deal to make so I got this.
Galena: “…Ok…Just don’t come back with more,” she gestures towards Thrice’s chest, “of that.”
Thrice: “I kinda like it.” He laughs.
Galena rolls her eyes. “Men.”
Thrice: “And the things we do for women.”
Galena: I appreciate it, just don’t get killed…
Thrice: I’ll try not to, it’s not really that fun.
Galena: Ok. When are you going to talk to her?
Thrice: Maybe when we get a breather from all this.
Galena: Well, at least we’re almost done with these spirits.
Thrice: “Yeah…” He seems to ponder, blushes, and finally looks away. “Glad it’s almost over.”
Galena brushes his red cheek with her hand. “Sorry again…”
His blush deepens as he grins, “Sure you are.”
Galena just smirks and shrugs.
Thrice: So for future preparations if we encounter a lust spirit we are to run far away.
Galena giggles. “Apparently so.”
Thrice: "Or at least I should, and not be around anything at all.’ He laughs playfully.
Galena: Yeah…you might be safe floating in a vacuum. I guess that’s what you get with a Matter Mage…
Thrice lay himself down onto his back on his bed, starting at the ceiling.
Galena: You ok?
Thrice: All things considered, yeah.
Galena: What’s wrong?
Thrice: Nothing at all. Just taking all this in. Deciding my next move.
Galena: Your next move?
Thrice: With everything yeah.
Galena: Well, we have a couple of spirits left, then Death…then…who knows…
Thrice: “Yeah…” Thrice’s hand touches Galena’ s back softly, “Thank you, I needed this.”
Galena smiles and turns more towards him. “You’re the reason I’m here. I wouldn’t have been if you hadn’t decided to break your deal. I’m glad you did, though.”
Thrice: “Me too.” He smiles up at her.
Galena: Well, I’ll let you get back to sleep, I suppose. Sorry again for being a jerk earlier…
Thrice: You weren’t a jerk, just concerned.
Galena smiles. “I’m pretty sure I was a jerk, but thank you for trying to make me feel better.”
Thrice: “Well you didn’t point a gun at me so that’s good.” He smirks.
Galena: I was too mad to even think about that. Glad I left it behind.
Thrice: Yeah. Coulda been bad.
Galena: “Lil bit. Let’s not think about that though.” She places her hand on his arm. “Thank you for what you did to keep us safe.”
Thrice puts her hand into his, “I try to make a habit out of it.”
Galena smiles at him. “Goodnight, Thrice. Sleep well.”
He stands up to walk Galena out, “I suppose I do need some rest.”
Galena: I’ll try not to interrupt again.
Thrice: I do like your interruptions though.
Galena smirks. “You like being scared out of bed by someone pounding your door down? Guess I’ve heard of weirder things…”
Thrice: “Only if it’s you.” He laughs.
She laughs, too. “Even so, next time I’ll be a little more quiet about it.”
Thrice: That is fine by me.
Galena: Well, I’ll see you in a little while?
Thrice: “Yeah.” He scratches his beard.
Galena holds her arms out for another hug. “Surely one more won’t kill you?”
Thrice holds her tight. “Of course not.”
Galena closes her eyes, enjoying the embrace. “Thank you again.”
Thrice: “And thank you.” He lingers for a moment before hesitantly placing a kiss on Galena’s right cheek.
Galena smiles at him and kisses Thrice’s cheek back. “Have a good night.”
Thrice: “You too.” His face slightly red.
Galena blushes too. “I will.” She opens his door, turns back to smile at him again, then leaves his room.
Thrice stands in his doorway watching her leave, his heart racing.
Galena turns and smiles again before ascending the stairs to her room. “Night” she mouths, not wanting to wake anyone else. Thrice smiles. He catches himself on his doorway, doing his best to force himself back into his room. Galena heads up the stairs and goes to her room. A moment later Thrice’ s hands lets go of the door frame and he walks up the stairs. He whispers to himself, “Nothing ventured…” Thrice ascends the stairs and sees Galena at her door.
Galena turns around and smirks when she sees him. “That was the shortest night’s sleep ever…”
Thrice smirks as his face turns red. “Yeah.” He slowly walks up her.
Galena smiles at him. “Yes?”
Thrice: “I..I…” He stammers as he places his hands on her sides.
She puts her hands on his shoulders. “What is it?” Thrice closes his eyes, “I’m being bold.” Afterwards he leans in and kisses her. She wraps her arms around his neck and kisses back. Thrice’s face is bright red. His chest feels like it is about to burst.
Galena smiles at him. “When you said it would take some time, I expected a little longer than 10 minutes.” She pauses. “Not that I’m complaining.”
His eyes slightly look away, “Sorry”
Galena: No sorry…I wasn’t complaining! Just surprised, that’s all.
Thrice’s hands caress her sides, “The timing just seemed right.”
Galena: I’m glad.
The red in his face starts to fade as he stares into her eyes. “Me too.”
Galena brings her hands back to his shoulders, and kisses him on the cheek again. “Want to stay awhile longer?”
Galena smiles and opens her bedroom door. “Well, after you, then.”
Thrice’s hands softly slide off her as he enters her room. His eyes stay locked on hers. She follows him inside and shuts the door behind them. Thrice’s hands grip Galena’s as she closes the door. Galena turns back around to face Thrice. She looks down at their hands and chuckles. “I’d say I’ve missed this, but I guess I didn’t really know I’d missed it.”
Thrice: “I’ve missed it for both of us.” He smiles as he pulls her close.
Galena: “I suppose that counts.” She kisses him again, running her fingers through his hair.
Thrice: “Galena I…,” he speaks between shallow, excited breaths, “I want to stay.”
Galena smiles. “Good. I was hoping you would.”
Thrice’s hands go to her sides as he pulls her along with him She walks with him, holding onto his arms to keep herself steady. He sits himself and her onto her bed and lays next to her. She snuggles into his chest and wraps her arms around him.
Galena: Pretty sure you’re not allowed to leave now.
Thrice: “That is fine by me.” He runs his hand through her hair.
Galena looks up at him and smiles. “I can’t remember the last time I’ve been this happy…I’m not sure I ever have been.”
Thrice smiles back. “Glad to be of assistance my lady.” He lightly kisses her forehead.
She moves her hand up on to his chest. Her finger traces where she remembers one of the scars to be. “I’m sorry you’ve had to go through so much.”
Thrice: “Bah, was nothing. Only the third time I’ve come close to death. Feel like I should have a punch card.” He smiles.
Galena says mockingly, “Only the third.” Back in her normal voice, “I think that’s enough, don’t you? I just hope Death doesn’t want a fourth…She might succeed.”
Thrice: “If Death wanted me dead she missed her chance when I visited.” His smirks and raises an eyebrow, “So confident in my abilities are we?”
Galena: You were giving her what she wanted then. Now you’re going to go back after you’ve pissed her off. Not trying to downplay your abilities…I just know we’re essentially powerless in comparison.
Thrice: Well there is that. But I still have to apologize, it’s the right thing to do.
Galena: You’re right, of course. I just don’t like it.
Thrice: I understand.
Galena yawns, stretches, and pulls the comforter up. She offers the covers to Thrice, too. He accepts the comforter and wraps his arms around her. She wraps her arms around him again and smiles. “Gonna get spoiled like this.” Thrice leans his head against hers, “Me too.” She turns her face up to his and kisses his cheek again. She’s having a hard time keeping her eyes open.
He kisses her in return, “Let’s get some rest.”
“Ok,” she says sleepily. “I’m glad you’re here.”
He pulls her closer, “As am I.”
She smiles. “Goodnight again, Thrice.” Before long, Galena’s breathing becomes slow and steady. She has fallen asleep. After a moment, Thrice shuts his eyes falls asleep with Galena in his arms.