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Negability Prime--Negability in time and space.

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Ivy needs a bedhead icon [Nov. 18th, 2012|08:35 pm]
Negability Prime--Negability in time and space.


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Some time later there is a soft scratch on the door. Sir Isaac quietly opens it and peeks around. He pauses for a few seconds, looking disappointed that the fire has burned down and everything is still, then starts to close the door again.

"He's asleep," whispers Ivy over Overstrom's blanket cocoon.

'Oh,' Sir Isaac whispers back sadly. 'I was hoping there would be someone to talk to tonight. I've never slept all night, you know, and he used to keep me company when I was not working in the laboratory."

"Aww--you can talk to me."

'To you? But--'

"I can talk, you know," she says sternly. "I can even talk English."

He pushes the door open a little farther. In one hand he has a candlestick, in the other a tray with two glasses, a bottle and a covered dish. 'Well perhaps, but you're not brave enough to drink the elixir I made! HE always would.'

Ivy rolls over Overstrom's snoring form and stretches down to the floor for his robe. "I'll drink anything you'll drink!"

Sir Isaac modestly averts his eyes as she chooses an assortment of clothes from the floor buffet. Once she's dressed, he enters, setting his tray and candle down on the table near the fireplace, and carefully sets another log on the dying fire, shivering.

'Oh, we used to freeze in our rooms in Cambridge in the winter,' he reminisces. 'It's a blessing to have enough money now to keep the house warm all the time.'

Ivy hitches up Blake's jeans and sticks her hands in the pockets of Overstrom's robe, looking pleased with herself. "How could you study when you were freezing?"

He pours each of them a drink, sets hers down on the arm of one chair, and settles into the other with his glass. 'Oh, in those days I spent most of the winter working through the night, and the laboratory was always very warm. I did most of my writing in the summer, when it was warmer in our rooms and there was more light to see by.' He takes a sip of his drink, leans back in his chair, stretching his feet toward the fire, and closes his eyes.

"What's in your elixir?" Ivy asks. "It tastes resiny."

'I don't remember now.'

"Didn't you make it yourself?"

'Well I didn't JUST make it,' he snaps at her. 'I made it a long time ago.'


'The last time I was in my laboratory...well not the very last time, since I showed it to you last night.' He nods at the tray on the table. 'I brought something for your master, but as he's in no condition to enjoy it perhaps you might.'

Ivy peeks under the cover. "Ooh, chocolate!" She bites into one, and stars whirl around her head in a completely literal fashion. "And--"

He smiles at her. 'Also wine and peaches, your master's three favourite things.'

"That is the best thing ever. Why do people not eat these all the time?"

'I only have them made when he's here.'

"Aww," she smiles, slumping into the chair. "You must really like him."

He smiles back, and sips his drink. 'It is somehow satisfying to please him,' he answers. 'I don't think many people do.'

"Certainly not to hear him tell it."

Sir Isaac chuckles. 'Well YOU apparently don't, though his actions belie his words.'

She decides to ignore that. "Did you two study together at Cambridge, or did you meet him later?"

'Oh, didn't we tell you that story? We met when we were both fellows at Trinity--I, um, don't believe he was a student there.'

"What happened?" she asks, stuffing another chocolate in her mouth.

'Well!' Sir Isaac takes another sip, and leans back again. 'He was...recommended to me by another scholar, and I brought him a manuscript I had in my possession that I'd been unable to apprehend on my own. And in three days he was able to translate it for me.'

"What language was it in?"

'He never told me.'

"What did the manuscript say?"

'That remains a secret to this day.'

"And then what happened?"

Sir Isaac shrugs. 'What happened? Why, nothing happened...I invited him to my rooms for a meal to thank him for his work, and he invited me back in return....' He smiles to himself. 'He used to live at the very top of the tower behind the chapel, and it was always a long climb to see him.'

"I was there once. There were a LOT of steps."

'Oh!' Sir Isaac sits up. 'I had forgotten you were there. I am sorry, it's been such a long time.'

"And you've done so much while we were gone."

He shrugs again. 'Not so much,' he admits. 'I'm far too old now to think or do anything important. So all I do now when he's here is reminisce.'

He reaches around to pull his wispy white hair over his shoulder. 'He used to braid my hair, you know,' he says to Ivy. 'Back when I had much more than I do now, and it got in the way all the time when I was working. I could never master the skill myself.'

She smiles. "It's tricky when you can't see the back of your own head."

'It is certainly much easier to do it for someone else.'

"Would you like me to try braiding yours?"

He opens his eyes and looks at her, frowning. 'Well I don't need it any more, as I no longer work around open fires.'

"There's one right over there," she points out. "Or at least there was a while ago."

'I'm not heating chemicals over it!'

"Okay then." She stretches. "Braids are no fun anyway. Once I was old enough to do my own hair I just chopped most of it off. So much easier."

Sir Isaac sits quietly for a short time. 'Actually...I would like it if you did it, I think.'

"Okay. Let me just wash my hands first."

Sir Isaac finishes off his drink, and refills his and Ivy's glasses. Despite his complaint of insomnia, he looks on the verge of falling asleep in the chair.

Ivy stands behind him and carefully begins to comb his wispy hair into sections.

He smiles. 'This does bring back memories....all of us were so much younger then. Except you, you weren't even around.'

"Who else was there?"

As Ivy finishes braiding his hair, tying it off neatly with a ribbon pulled from the dress lying at her feet, he tells her of some of the other scholars who had been living in the college at the same time he'd first met Overstrom. Almost all of the stories are unflattering, but not malicious. He tries to stifle a yawn as she finishes and arranges his braid carefully on his dressing gown.

Ivy catches the yawn and lets it go again. "Do you want to go to sleep now? I think I might."

He glances at the bed. 'I'd stay, but it seems a bit...crowded.'

"Naw, it's fine. If O kicks I'll just push him out of bed."

He grins at her. 'You would, wouldn't you? With no regard for consequences.'

"I've done it before." Ivy tosses off the robe, hops into bed, and rolls neatly over Overstrom again. She reaches over him and flaps the quilt invitingly.

Sir Isaac blows out the remaining candles, pulls his robe tighter around him, and crawls into bed next to Overstrom. 'Thank you,' he whispers.

"Y'welcome," murmurs Blake in his sleep, throwing an arm around Ivy. "Snow forts."


Someone's tapping his shoulder. Blake rolls over to see who it is, and promptly falls out of bed.

'Well I didn't expect you to get up THAT fast,' Batu whispers. He's wearing a TAS jumpsuit and a grin.

"I got DOWN, not up," Blake retorts, rubbing his eyes.

'Whatevs.' He reaches a hand out. 'Come on, time to get back to work.'

Ivy peers over the edge of the bed at Blake, and then blinks up at Batu. Her hair looks alarmed, but her eyes are sleepy. "Well hello there. Come to join the party?"

'I think I'm too late. Looks like you had a rough night!' He waggles his eyebrows.

She fluffs out her hair. "You make it sound like I didn't sleep well."

'Um, did you?'

"Well, for a few minutes maybe."

Blake has escaped to the other side of the bed and is frantically searching for his jeans. They, like the other discarded clothing, are nowhere to be found.

'Well get some sleep, for pete's sake. Come on Blake, no one will care what you're wearing when you get back, and we can find you more clothes later.'

"I can't go back naked."

'Yes, you can. We're just going back to your room.'  Ivy marvels at Batu's ability to say that without sounding suggestive. It's not something she would have expected from him.

"Oh." Blake narrows his eyes at Ivy. "Weren't you wearing my pants earlier?"

She checks under the covers. "I'm not wearing them now."

He blushes. "Oh, um--yeah."

Ivy rolls out of bed and staggers over to give him a naked hug. "It was nice seeing you," she says with no hint of irony.

Blake tucks his chin into her smooth warm shoulder, giving in to the surreality. "Bye," he mumbles.

Batu rolls his eyes.

"Very professional, Batu," Ivy says.

'I"m not here to be professional, I'm here to take Blake back to where he belongs. It's not like I've got anything else to do, or anything.'

"That's a pity. I could probably think of something."

"OKAAAAY I'm ready to go back now," Blake cuts in.

'Excellent.'  Batu reaches for his hand.

Ivy winks and waves goodbye, then climbs back into bed to snuggle up to Overstrom. "I did too corrupt someone," she mumbles to a sleeping Sir Isaac.