damncompass: Computer generated Warehouse logo (Warehouse Logo)
2014-04-15 08:02 am

Mid-April 2013: Joshua's Warehouse Lab

He'd settled into what was almost a routine. Get up, do paperwork, do bills if they were needed, and then have an afternoon for Science. All of his current linear experiments were turning up nothing, so he decided to get a random Artifact from a shelf. Putting random letters and numbers into the computer elicited a small hand mirror in Raleigh Sector. He dutifully went and got it, returning to start his research.

At first, nothing was out of the ordinary, but before Joshua could even think, as he turned the mirror, a huge bright flash pushed him to the ground, knocking him out.

The shiny gold nonsense, not that gold nonsense, something else entirely, swirls around him as he lies on the floor, and scenes start appearing in the mist.

I'm pregnant, Joshua. ... How the fuck did that happen? ... Your father and I had sex, you dipshit.

Joshua? What are you. ... Oh, fuck. Claudia, don't be scared of me! Please! ... Your curtains are on fire. ... DAD WHERE IS THE FIRE EXTINGUISHER?

Why do you have to go so far away? I'll be lonely. ... I'm not that far, and you have Mom and Dad. ... But I want you! You're my brother.

They're not coming back, are they? ... No, Claudia. ... But Mom and Dad! They can't be gone! ... I know the feeling, baby sister.

Why are we going to court? ... They're finally agreeing to let me have you. ... But I was always going to be with you! It's always the two of us! ... It is now.

Artie! Make him stop! ... Claudia, remember that I will always... No!

You abandoned him once, why shouldn't you do it again ... It isn't like that. ... Oh, no. It's exactly like that. Me and Joshua on our own again. Good thing I'm used to it.

And then everything changed and the scenes changed, more chaotic, more blurry, not linear. Two small children, a second gravestone, incoherent flashes of people, Claudia huddled on a park bench, Claudia in a hospital, Helena with a trident, Helena huddled somewhere alone, then walking through a chair, explosions, Claudia screaming bloody murder, Artie with some sort of navagational object, Myka in a doctor's office, and finally, a man in some strange clothing facing Claudia down an aisle of the warehouse and a name. Claire.

And as quickly as it came, in a flash, it went away, and everything settled as he slowly started to wake up.

When he finally came to his senses, lying on the floor of his lab, he shouted at the walls around him. "Who the fuck is Claire Donovan?" The only response he recieves is a faint skittering of faiance wings.
damncompass: Artifact shirts (Up to something with baby sister)
2014-03-11 11:40 am
Entry tags:

March 11, 2013; Leena's B&B

Joshua had thought long and hard about what to do for his sister's birthday. He had to do something awesome, that he knew for certain, but he wasn't exactly sure what that awesome would be. After some thought, and a lot of pacing around his lab, he finally came up with an idea, a couple weeks before the day in question.

So when Claudia woke up on the morning of her birthday, she would smell omlettes cooking merrily downstairs. It's only the beginning.
damncompass: Computer generated Warehouse logo (Warehouse Logo)
2014-02-24 12:32 pm
Entry tags:

Late February 2013: Joshua's Lab

It had been a long few weeks for Joshua. He had been ignoring all of the paperwork that he should have been doing, in favour of just doing research, but this morning, he realized that he needed to get back to his responsibilities and finish the backlog of paperwork. Turning he music up, he settled into a rhythm of getting things taken care of.

About an hour later, something jolted him out of his thoughts. A song came on his player, something that he wasn't sure if he'd put on or if he'd bumped the player into radio mode.

I remember tears streaming down your face
When I said, "I'll never let you go"
When all those shadows almost killed your light
I remember you said, "Don't leave me here alone"
But all that's dead and gone and passed tonight.

He stared at his computer screen for a couple minutes, then replayed the song about four times.

More than a few minutes went by, as he just stared into space, a million things going through his head. Ignoring the rest of the paperwork, he spun his chair over to his laptop and started to write:

To: claudiopolis@gmail.com
From: shinyteleportation@gmail.com

Subject: Things


I don't know why all of a sudden I've been thinking about things, but I've been thinking about the past.

I know I've said this a million times, but I'm sorry. I made you a promise, and I broke it, perhaps for good reasons, perhaps for selfish ones, but I still broke it.

However, even through my crappy broken promise, you've become an amazing and wonderful young lady, one that I'm really damn proud of. I am sorry that I wasn't there to help you along the way, but I think you found the way pretty damn well. I think I'm finally learning to stop being an ass and just let it go. You've moved on, I need to.

I know I say it a lot, but I love you, baby sister. (yes, you'll always be my baby sister no matter how old you get) Let's get dinner and ice cream later. We haven't had a sibling time in a couple weeks. Let me know.

damncompass: Computer generated Warehouse logo (Warehouse Logo)
2014-02-02 03:26 pm
Entry tags:

Early February 2013; The Warehouse

Things have been unsettled in the Warehouse for the past day or so. Artifacts have been sparking more often, and almost every occupied aisle has a static ball buzz by at least once.

Joshua got David's letter, and is coming back to the Warehouse to see if there's anything he can grab that might help Helena be herself more often than not.

He steps out of the door and sighs. This is not a good week.
damncompass: doing paperwork (Science to do)
2013-12-26 03:22 pm

Christmas 2012: Joshua's Warehouse Lab

There's a Christmas tree in Joshua's lab with multi-colored lights, and a few strings of tinsel literally thrown on it.

On the top is a shining static ball that Joshua's talking to.

"Oh, so you decided to knock off my star and become a star yourself?"


"If you say so. Good thing I like you so much."

Bee eeeeee!
damncompass: doing paperwork (Science to do)
2013-12-21 08:11 pm

Late December 2012; The Warehouse

It's one of those days, where everything in the Warehouse is going pretty well.

People are around, doing inventory, prepping reports, and above everything, there's a cheerful static ball or two zipping down the aisles.

Joshua's in his lab, fussing with this and that, not really making any progress, but amusing himself in the process.
damncompass: Computer generated Warehouse logo (Warehouse Logo)
2013-12-03 11:49 am
Entry tags:

Early December 2012: Leena's B&B

December is damn cold in the badlands. Good thing the B&B has a good heater. Due to the cold and Joshua's typical inclinations, he has been getting up a bit earlier than usual to make breakfast for Morning Meetings, which he's been running more often than not because Artie just doesn't want to leave the Warehouse in the cold. (Not that Joshua blames him in the slightest).

So this particular morning, Pete and Myka were already on a case from yesterday involving rather frightning office supplies, so Joshua was making tea instead of the usual coffee, and much less bacon.

It still smells damn good, though.
damncompass: in black and white (Noir!Joshua)
2013-11-26 06:59 pm
Entry tags:

Late November 2012: Leena's B&B

Joshua has taken over the table in the sunroom with a notebook and his laptop. On his laptop are a couple tabs' worth of recipe sites. Looks like he's trying to nail down a Thanksgiving dinner.
damncompass: explaining face (serious business)
2013-11-08 10:08 am

Early November 2012: Leena's B&B/The Warehouse

It was a long night, but an amazing one. In an effort to spend more time with Helena, instead of just talking about it, Joshua took her out to a new restaurant in Featherhead, and then to a movie, and by the time they got home, it was late.

Flopping into bed, Joshua heard the usual chaos of about eleven PM at the B&B. Guess it's just a normal night.
damncompass: Arms crossed (Don't like your shit)
2013-10-29 03:43 pm

October 28, 2013: Milliways Bar, Room 1312

It wasn’t something that Joshua dreamed about much, but suddenly being in the apartment his parents had before Claudia arrived wasn’t too far off the map.

Smelling a very familiar scent, Joshua wandered into the kitchen to find his father at the table smoking a joint.

“You sure you don’t want one? I have extra.”

Joshua rolled his eyes and walked over to the table. “If it was something other than a dream joint, then perhaps I would, but it would probably just frustrate me more.” He paused. “Hi Dad.”

“Hey, you.” Before Joshua could sit down, Peter got up and pulled him into a hug. “I’m sorry I fucked up.”

Joshua hugged his father back, clinging a bit. “I should have been there. It was my own damn procrastination that kept me in Lincoln that weekend. I should have been there, and then I could have helped, or reminded you, or something.”

Peter sighed. “Oh, stop blaming yourself, you dumbshit. We were on a date, and you stopped wanting to tag along on those when you were five. And it’s not like either of us had a phone handy - and even if we did, I wouldn’t have thought being tired was worth bugging you. If you’d been there, I might have plowed the damn car into a tree anyway. It’s not your fucking fault. This one’s all on me.”

“Yeah, well. I...” He shook his head, and plunked down on one of the chairs. “I still feel like I should have been there, should have done something to help.”

“And that is because you never did deal with anything unless you were high.” Peter rolled his eyes. “Get on that, kid, seriously. Besides, you did what you needed to. You took care of Claud. Couldn’t ask for more than that.”

“Yeah, well. You tell me how to get some fucking pot in buttfuck South Dakota. I remember you had it bad in Sioux Falls sometimes.” Joshua sighed. “And, I did to a point. And then I fucked up again and left her.”

“You didn’t fuck up, you had an accident. There’s a difference.” Peter pulled the ashtray closer and stubbed out his joint. “As for the pot, let your girlfriend do the driving, keep an eye on the landscape until you spot some, buy some seeds from the owner and grow your own. Problem solved. You have a fucking satellite interference machine, don’t you? Not to mention there’s enough badges around that damn place to deal with anyone who came prying.”

“Damnit, Dad, why do you have to be so logical when it comes to pot?” He leaned back in his chair. “Maybe I will. Besides, I could always say that it’s just a plant-based Artifact that I’m fucking around with. Honestly, the only person who’d care would be Artie, and he can shove it.” He pauses. “And… I knew what I was getting myself into. It wasn’t just an accident. I knew I might be leaving Claudia behind, and I didn’t care.”

“Yes, you did. You wouldn’t be beating yourself up over it fifteen years later if you didn’t care.”

“That’s not the point, Dad. I care now, I cared before. I just… in that moment, I didn’t.”

“The Donovans, way too fucking hard on ourselves since 1954.” Peter rolled his eyes. “You cared even then, and I bet some part of you knew Claud would be fine. She’s resilient. So are you. And it all worked out in the end. Get yourself stoned and let it the fuck go, kid.”

“You do realize, Dad, that most parents would be telling me the exact opposite.” He shook his head, laughing a bit to himself. “Donovans, doing what people least expect since… who the fuck knows when.”

“And since when were Claire and I most parents? You won’t relax enough to get anything really useful done if you don’t. Let go of all the baggage that’s weighing you down and trust your instincts. You got this.”

“If it was anyone other than you, Dad, I think I’d tell them off for shit advice.” Joshua shook his head. “It’s just with you and Mom somehow it all worked out. How the hell’d you pull that off?”

“Hard work and dumb luck. Me knowing how to balance a budget and her being smarter than me. You guys completely outclassed me.” Peter smiled. “I’m proud of you, though. You and Claud. You both turned out great.”

“You’re pretty damn smart yourself, Dad. Don’t try to say you aren’t. You kept up with Mom and Claudia and I pretty damn well.” Joshua shrugged. “Besides, finance isn’t easy.”

“Never said I wasn’t, but you guys had me beat by miles. I’m just glad you and Claud found a good use for your talents. You two are good for that place, and it’s good for you.”

“Well, I know it’s good for Claud, at any rate.” Joshua shrugged. “I’m still not completely certain that I won’t fuck it up, though.”

Peter raised his eyebrows. “As I recall, the debate team problems came from the people who gave a shit not having the time and the people who had the time not giving a shit, and you still took that clusterfuck and won nationals. You’re a leader, Joshua, whether you like it or not. And you’re not going to fuck it up any more than Claud will.”

He made a grumpy face, shaking his head. “Damn it, Dad, why can’t you be as illogical as people think you are? It’s awkward sometimes.”

“Because I don’t believe in lying to my kids. You’d figure it out sooner or later. Your heart’s already there, we just need to get your head in the game. That’ll come with time, though.”

“We’ll see.” Joshua paused, and poked at the joint in the ash tray. “I miss you, Dad. I don’t think I realized how much until lately.”

Peter sighed. “I miss you too, kid.” He reached across the table and ruffled Joshua’s hair. “But we’re still with you, and you damn well know it.”

“Heeeeeeeey.” Joshua made a face and fussed with his hair. “You know how terrible my hair gets when you do that.” He smiled, though, and took a deep breath. “I know you’re with me. Even more when I see Mom in Claudia.”

“And you’re too much like me for your own good.” Peter smiled. “But you’ll be fine. Trust yourself, Joshua. You got this.”

“Thanks, Dad.”
damncompass: concerned face (Not sure about this)
2013-10-28 10:27 am

Late October 2013: Milliways Bar, Room 1312

Falling asleep after his poker with Helena and Moist, Joshua didn't think much of anything would happen.

Suddenly, he was no longer in Millways, but in a dimly-lit (to his eyes, at any rate) room, awkwardly staring at papers scattered on a desk. The handwriting was familiar somehow, the ink splatters and prose reminding him of something he just couldn't place. As he reached out to pick up one of the papers and actually read it, a voice came from behind him.

"You know she doesn't like people reading what she's writing until she's done." Joshua turned, startled, only to find an eight-year-old girl looking up at him, a very familiar smirk on her face. "Mummy even hated it when I read what she'd written."

He just stared at the little girl for a moment. "You know, I think I'd recognize you anywhere. You are adorable."

"Thank you, Joshua." Christina ran over and attached to his legs. "Mummy really likes you. I don't think she's ever liked anyone as much as she likes you."

"Well, that's good to know, Christina." He sighed, walking as much as he could with an eight-year-old attached to his legs, and sat down on Helena's bed.

Christina sat down on the bed as well, swinging her legs off the side. “Well, you’re taking care of her. As much as anyone can, really. She needs that. It’ll help her heal - she spent too long not doing that.”

Joshua leaned back against the headboard. “Yeah, I’ve kinda figured that one out. Spending time out of time sounds like a good idea at the time, but it really isn’t.” He pauses. “Fu… uh, yeah, it’s never a good idea at any time.”

Christina laughed. “You do know how often Mummy says ‘bollocks,’ right? Uncle Charles was the only one who really cared.”

“Yeah, I know. I just… well, the last kid I was really around was Claudia, and Mom and Dad really didn’t give any shits.” He just looked at her for a moment. “Not that I mind meeting you, but why me and not your mother? I mean… no offense, but she’d probably get more out of seeing you.”

“Not now.” Christina sighed. “She isn’t ready. She can’t get me back until she lets me go. Now, it’d just be another disappointment, and it would probably hurt more than Egypt since I act like me.”

“Who else would you act like?” He looked at her oddly. “I mean… aren’t you just my perception of you now anyway?”

“No, silly, the trap in Egypt made something that looked like me but all it said was ‘Mummy.’ If Mummy had been thinking clearly she would have known I always said more than that. I don’t know about perceptions, but this is more accurate.”

“Oh. I… see.” In the way that he doesn’t really. “Well, uhm. Is this like Christmas Carol where I’m supposed to learn something from you?”

Christina laughed. “What you take away from it is up to you. I just wanted to meet you.”

“Oh, alright.” He glanced over to the desk which somehow had been cleared of its papers, replaced by a couple dolls and a deck of cards. “Well, I could play with you for a bit.”

Christina grinned, and they played for quite a while, chatting and laughing.

When Joshua finally woke up, he had a feeling that there was something that should have stood out to him, but he’d be damned if he could remember it. He turned, noticing Helena still sleeping soundly beside him, and kissed her on the temple. She stirred, but didn't wake up. Probably better that way.
damncompass: Eye of Horus Pin (Regentface)
2013-10-25 10:48 am

Late October 2012; Featherhead, South Dakota: Regent Office Building

Joshua had been putting this off for a couple weeks, avoiding all of the publicity that kept trying to find him, even down to his YouTube views exploding, even on the stupidest little videos. (A video about playing moving Tetris? Really?) However, before the meeting, he finally had a moment to catch his boss in his office.

As he walked down the hall, Joshua took in the somewhat imposing office wing. It was strange, having these offices, as he knew damn well that very few people actually used them. He had one, a space that he's almost certain was bigger than a couple apartments he lived in, but at the moment, it was pretty bare, other than a couple photos (one of Claudia, one of Helena), a computer, a coffee pot, and a mug. His boss' office was at the end of the hall, opening up on most of the front of the office building. The last door on the right was his office, and the one across the hall he was pretty sure was Jane's.

On the ebony double doors at the end of the hall were two symbols, an obvious eye of Horus on the right door, but on the left was a star-like symbol that Joshua couldn't place. He knocked on the door, a bit timidly.

"You are allowed to just come in, Joshua." His boss called out from behind the door.

Opening the door, and going in, Joshua shook his head. "How did you know it was me?"

"You are the only person who would bother showing up and knocking."

Shaking his head, Joshua went into the office. "So, I, er... I sort of got offered the Nobel Prize."

"Congratulations." His boss stood up and walked over, taking Joshua's hand and shaking it firmly. "You deserve to be recognized for your work, as this is likely the last time it could happen."

"Yeah, but..." Joshua just stared at him. "Regent shit. And I can't be recognized, and stuff."

His boss shook his head. "Honestly, Joshua, we just have to not be known for Warehouse business. I hear you're quite the thing on YouTube."

Joshua bit his lip, staring down at his shoes. "So, you're not giving me a reason to back out?"

"Quite the contrary. I think you should take it. It's a once-in-a-lifetime honour that you have certainly earned."

"I don't really feel like I've earned shitall. Half-research here, someone else's data there. It's not mine."

"Yes, but you're missing the point." His boss stood there, almost military-straight, looking him in the eyes. "Most people who make discoveries do it by observing how the world works. That is what you did, both in your teleportation research and your latest research. It's what you're doing with Artifacts, Joshua. You deserve that recognition."

There was something in his boss's earnest expression that cut off all of Joshua's comments on the matter. He just nodded, sighing deeply. "I guess I need to get a tux, then."

"That you do, Joshua. Now, shall we go to the meeting?"

The meeting went off without much of a hitch. Theodora made her opinions of Joshua running the last meeting known, but both his boss and Jane seemed to take that under advisment, which Joshua was pretty damn sure meant they ignored her totally.

After the meeting, everyone just nodded at him and went on their way. Joshua got into his car, thoughtful, and prodded at his phone, to see where the hell one would get a tux in Featherhead. The answer? Nowhere.
damncompass: Computer generated Warehouse logo (Warehouse Logo)
2013-10-23 08:45 pm

October 31, 2012: Warehouse Hallowe'en Party

Welcome to Leena's Bed and Breakfast. It's a homey-looking place with a well-loved lived-in feel. Once you come in the front door, you're faced with a hallway. To the left is a large living room, with a sunroom off of the side, and a dining room off of the back. Straight ahead is a kitchen, with a private wing behind it and a bathroom. To the right is a stairway upstairs with a ribbon tied across the banister. Go under the ribbon to your own peril.

Joshua, Helena, and Claudia are milling around.

Have fun, and please don't trash anything too badly!
damncompass: Stricking out tongue (Bratty)
2013-10-22 09:18 pm
Entry tags:

Late October 2012: Note on the door to the Warehouse Office

Attention Warehouse Agents!

There will be a Hallowe'en party on the evening of the 31st of October. Food and drink will be provided, as well as games, of the board and card variety, and if I feel like it, perhaps the role-playing sort.

Costumes are mandatory. (This means you, Artie.)

Artifacts are forbidden unsuggested, but if you have an idea, run it by me. (No mistletoe, Claudia, I mean it.)

If you have problems, too bad. See you all then!

damncompass: Bedhead and wtf face (WTF mate)
2013-10-07 08:44 am

Early October 2012; Joshua's Warehouse Lab

"Hey, Joshua? You've got mail."

Leena's voice cut through Joshua's midday perusal of case files.

"Come on in, Leena." Once she got in, Joshua waved at the table next to his desk. "Dump the mail over there. I'll get to it at some point." Nodding, Leena dropped the mail on the table, and chatted with him for a while.

After Leena left, he went back to the case files he was reading. Lunchtime came and went, and so did a couple hours of science, some inventory to break up the day, and finally, around six, he remembered the mail.

A couple people wanted to give him a credit card (why would he want another credit card considering he currently had one with no limit?), someone wanting him to change his cable service (which he was pretty sure he never had in the first place.)

As he was about to open the last letter, which he was pretty damn sure was yet another bit of junk mail, his phone rang. Absentmindedly, he answered.


"Is this Dr. Joshua Donovan?"

"Depends on who you are, but yeah, this is Joshua."

"I'm calling from the Nobel Media Foundation in Stockholm where it was just announced that you won the Nobel Prize in Physics."

"I what the fuck now? You have to be kidding me."

"Not at all, Dr. Donovan. Did you not know you were a candidate?"

"Uh. No. I might have lost that memo in a move I made not long ago. Shit, I just googled myself and it's true. Er."

"Can I ask you a couple questions about your work in antimatter?"

"Uhm... sure."

Ten minutes later, as he hung up the phone and stared at the wall of his lab, he had no clue what to do.
damncompass: concerned face (oh dear)
2013-10-01 02:52 pm

Late September 2012: Leena's B&B

It had been a long weekend, but somehow he'd found it cathartic. So once he got home, he grabbed a quick sandwich (stealing the last of the cheese which he was certain he'd hear about the next morning) and snuck upstairs. Putting his suitcase beside the door, he stripped into just his boxers and climbed into bed beside Helena.
damncompass: Eye of Horus Pin (Regentface)
2013-09-29 02:36 pm

Late September 2012: Manchester, New Hampshire

A few days ago, Joshua's boss had rung him up and told him that one of his fellow Regents had died in a boating accident, and everyone was going to New Hampshire for the funeral. Halfway there on the plane, Artie (seated beside him because he refused to upgrade to first class, and Joshua was the one who bought the tickets) started chattering about the case he had sent Claudia on, and his intention of going to check up on her after the funeral.

"Bad idea, Artie." Joshua shook his head. "She doesn't take that shit well."

"Oh, she'll be fine. I just want to see how she's doing."

"Bad idea theater. Honestly."

With another shake of his head, Joshua fell silent again and the rest of the flight was uneventful. At the airport, they met up with his boss and Jane. Artie wandered off to rent a car mumbling something about driving to Boston. After even more admonitions about how bad of an idea driving in Boston would be, the Regent trio shook their heads and drove off to the service.

Joshua was quiet during the entire thing, which seemed so out of place, all of the loud and emotional prayers, all of the gospel singing, and the tributes to the dead woman that made Jane roll her eyes and mutter things under her breath that Joshua never really caught.

Eventually, the service was over, and they proceeded to the cemetery. Everything was fine until the minister started talking about ashes and dust, and something caught in Joshua's throat. Closing his eyes, he quietly backed up and walked away from the group at the grave.

A moment to himself would be enough. He just needed a moment. Really.
damncompass: Artifact shirts (Up to something with baby sister)
2013-09-24 01:05 pm

Late September 2012: Featherhead, South Dakota

If there's one thing that Joshua truly missed from Switzerland, it's the different restaraunts.

Thus, after a good half day's worth of research, he finally found the one decent Indian restaraunt in possibly all of western South Dakota.

On the bright side, it didn't require reservations, and there weren't too many people there.

Dinner is lovely with naan, a few appetizers, and Joshua's favourite vindaloo curry.