10-12-2011, 10:27 PM
One journey was over, at least. Damien planned to leave the bike at this point, and for Rose to stay with it; he doubted that she'd mind, seeing that there were animals nearby for her to talk to. As well as the horses, there was a cat sunning itself on the roof of the abandoned farmhouse while four kittens played around it. She would be fine here while he walked on to the power station. He couldn't take the bike as the roads were almost completely broken up at this point; trees had cracked the paving and destroyed the roads, and other vegetation had filled in the gaps. In any case, Damien was certainly well able to deal with a short walk to the power station. He didn't want to risk taking his dragon shape til he was right up close to the power station and knew for certain that there would be no-one at all nearby. Then he could fly right up and land right by the sarcophagus and be able to inspect it at his leasure.
Damien took his sunglasses off briefly so he could remove his crash helmet. Rose's question took him by surprise, and he had to think about it for a while. Finally, he said, "I don't know about that; I mean, my parents are together but they're not married. I don't want you to think that marriage is the be all and end all of everything; two people can be married and then split up, and another two people can not be married but stay together always. I'd rather stay in the second group. I understand you'd want to wait and everything and I respect that. My parents never got married cuz it would just be too difficult, what with Dad never having been born and therefore not having any of the documents and everything."
He wondered just how Rose would react. Damien wasn't saying that he didn't want to stay with Rose; far from it. He just hoped that she wasn't going to be choosing a dress and wedding venue when they'd only been together for a few hours. "Look; I don't want you to get the wrong idea and think that I'm saying I don't want to be with you, cuz that's not true," Damien said. "I'll project my thoughts into your mind, so you can see for yourself what I really think." He did so; Rose would instantly get the image that he did like her a lot, and wanted to be with her for a long time. "The thing is, I inherited Dad's immortality, so what 'the rest of our lives' means doesn't really mesh with that," he added. "But it would be for a long time."
Rose smiled at him, "I know, Damien, I know; my parents split up, remember?" She leaned onto him for a moment. "Since I know you can, will you look into my mind? Please? It'll work better than words." She wanted him to know that her reason for asking had nothing to do with her possible visions of them walking down the aisle. In fact, if Damien scanned her mind as she'd requested him to, he'd find that Rose wanted him, and wanted him badly; what she'd meant by her query is whether or not he'd help her from letting herself get carried away with him. Sure, she wanted him, but she wanted to put limits on that, not only for the sake of her beliefs but also because she didn't want him to think she was… easy, or anything of that sort. Also, she knew that neither of them were ready for the sort of commitment parenting required, and that was something that weighed heavily on her mind.
She liked Damien, and knew he liked her; she just thought that it was best to have all the tricky things agreed on before they plunged fully into their budding relationship. Her father had always taught her that it was better to think things through ahead of time and make a sure decision, and then things usually were a lot easier from there because you had that earlier solid decision to fall back on. Since she had no idea how to go about expressing this with words in a language that she hadn't spent a lot of time practicing, she let herself think and feel this wordlessly, knowing that he'd understand if he scanned her mind.
Rose looked up into his eyes, which were utterly black. But, unlike his father's, Damien's eyes did show his emotions, and Rose was glad to see his eyes for once, instead of the glasses. Some people would be freaked out by Damien's eyes, but Rose, who made a habit of talking to many animals with similar eyes, accepted them, and accepted him. Damien wasn't anything near normal, but neither was she; normal was overrated, anyways. Rose was so intent on what she was doing that she hardly noticed the animals anymore.
Damien willingly scanned Rose's mind when she asked him to. He was relieved beyond belief when he did so, and found that what she wanted mirrored his choices. He said, "I get it now; you want to wait, right? That's fine with me. We haven't seen each other in a decade so we need to get to know each other properly first, before we do anything else. Now, I need to go and get this job over with so I'm going to leave the bike here with you, OK? You can keep an eye on it and the crash helmets, too; I can't drive up to the power station cuz the road is wrecked. I won't take long; I'm just going to check all over the sarcophagus then I'll come back here. I'll put a psychic shield around me so that I don't pick up anything from the core that would hurt you. We can look around the place after, if you want; the radioactivity isn't as much in the city."
Damien had a camera on him to take photos of the core and sarcophagus; he was going to keep it within the psychic shield so that it wouldn't be affected by the intense radiation without when he was doing his inspection. He briefly checked the geiger counter; the level was higher than normal, but Rose wouldn't suffer any ill effects by staying in this vincinity for the moment. Damien could tell that there wasn't anyone around in the immediate area; there was a small group of people within Pripyat, along with a few scientists who were working on the other side of the city. So he wouldn't be interrupted as there wasn't anyone nearby at all.
The horses grazed, occasionally flicking their tails at intruding flies. The cat lazily stretched out her paws, the claws extending as she did so. A kitten pounced on a butterfly. The area looked just like any other area of natural beauty; the trees were tall and healthy and the plant life covered nearly everything. Just the reading from the geiger counter showed that not all was well in the area; that although nature populated the dead zone, humans could not settle down here again and perhaps, due to the memory of what had happened, never would.