The bubbles of the Good Witch Glinda had always fascinated her – even despite the special effects technology of 1939. They had just looked…magical and perfect. Strong enough to carry a person, but ready to pop at a moment’s notice.
Stef rested her back against the wall of the oubliette, and stared across at the princess – who definitely wasn’t in another castle.
Carol wandered slowly around her side of the bubble, completely oblivious to the fact that she was there – this was the second time she’d woken up after Ryan had left, but it wasn’t a pattern yet, just something to keep an eye on.
It fit though, in a fairy-tale kind of way – if the oubliettes were to lock someone away, it was just rewarding the jailor if the prisoner was awake when you came to visit.
Of course, that brings up all kinds of questions.
I’m keeping an eye, I’m not drawing conclusions.
From what Ryan had said, Carol’s rampage had been hot, bloody and filled with corpses. That she’d killed people – and Taylor – without any regard for people she had considered friends. It was the kind of snap that just…didn’t happen.
Insanity was a thing. Insanity was a very, very real thing, and it manifested in all forms. A good day could go to bad, to shit, and to suicide with very little prompting.
Turning hate against yourself, however, seemed to be an entirely different thing to turning it outward, to taking it out, to being so unthinking, unreasonable, and unstoppable that you managed to kill a volcano.
If it had been something normal, something ordinary, something explainable, there would have been signs. Ryan wouldn’t have missed all the signs that led to something like that. No reasonable person could have missed all of the signs.
Flatmate!Carol was an entirely different kind of person though. She was the kind of drugged zombie Stef was sure she would be if the doctors had ever gotten her into psychiatric care. Slow, unaware movements, shuffling footsteps, and the occasional murmured word.
I would kill myself before I ever got like that.
She seemed to eat – at least occasionally, it didn’t seem to be enough to sustain a body, but maybe magic played an element in that as well.
So far, Carol hadn’t noticed her presence at all – and it wasn’t something she was going to force.
Stef reached a hand over her head, touched the wall, and for the millionth time, wished for an internet connection. Again, there was nothing.
She flopped down onto the bed, and picked up one of the Agency-approved tablet Ryan had brought her, and browsed through some of the Field reports – though it was far easier to get lost in the ones from Tech.
Eventually, the tablet dropped onto her face, and she rolled over to get some sleep.
A scream reverberated around the bubble.
Stef started awake, her hand wrapping around the closest object – one of the tablets, like a weapon, and sat up, trying to disengage herself from the quilt.
Carol had plastered herself against the wall that bifurcated the bubble, drool marks in a two-metre streak where she’d wiped her mouth in a ragged line. Her eyes were wide, and she looked…every part the killer who had sundered an Agency.
Carol lifted a hand and slammed her open palm against the wall. Her head hung at an unnatural angle, and she screamed again.
The wall won’t break.
The wall is going to break. The wall is going to break. The wall is going to break.
Stef pushed herself to her feet, then grabbed the bed and rammed up against the wall, it wold provide some protection if the thin layer smashed.
The wall is going to break.
As quickly as it had started, Carol slumped and went back to walking her half of the bubble in small circuits.
I want out. I want out.
He won’t keep you in here forever – just give it time.
Stef pulled on the blanket, drew it up to her chest, and resumed reading the field reports.
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