Axel's Restaurant

[This is another story co-authored with DawnCharger. In this story Ceara and Faolán (two of my playable characters) meet in Axel’s. Their first face to face meeting in this dimension (A long story – sadly I lost most of the logs of the RP’s detailing why – Just accept the reasons are good – trust me :stuck_out_tongue: ).

In the roleplay I played Ceara and DawnCharger played the part of Faolán. I can’t thank DawnCharger enough for the respect shown and the help in developing these characters.

As a recap, Faolán had been accidently sent both through time and from a parallel dimension by way of a tear in reality caused by fiddling with a Chaos magic attuned Ancile (that they’d actually come from an alternate dimension hadn’t yet been realised…)

At the time of this story Faolán has been in this dimension nearly three years (Arrived early 2019)and his sister Ceara has been here 12-18 months (arrived late 2020).

This story follows “Colour Me Purple – Part 3” and is a precursor to a series of stories I’m preparing tentatively called “Death Of A Dimension – Part 1 → xxx”

Again I apologise for any issues missed by the “Continuity Police” These stories have grown over 3-4 years of RP. The story is slowly evolving … some details changing, to help tie things together more fluidly.

I play the older versions of the triplets in game and needed a reason why the ‘usual’ theoretical issues with time travel, such as paradox and the like, were less of an issue (to me at least).

Further I wanted to avoid any situation where I may accidentally suggest that I expected another player to be ‘required’ to take some action because my character was from the future and thus knew what they were going to do. So the history between when they arrive, starting in 2019 is different to that in this dimension’s timeline.

Any interactions between the future versions of the triplets and player has always been with the consent of that player. This also includes what may have happened to the alternate versions of their characters in the Faolán and Ceara’s home dimension. For example, the Astra character died early on in the alternate dimension, but obviously not here. I hope that makes sense.]

**Axel’s Restaurant**

Faolán had been with Astra at one of Drina’s Ealdwic Park shows when Ceara had called. Originally, he had planned to meet his sister in a couple of days, but after this things had to be brought forward. This was the reason he was rushing to the Ealdwic Anima well.

He and Astra had been very busy over the last week or two … with work … Finalising contracts the girl had accepted from the Temple and an excursion into the desert after he’d got wind of another Roach operation against the Bedouin. Worse it seemed that his old nemesis ‘Viper’ was back in the field.

He had really thought he’d done enough damage to that pesky woman to either kill her outright or at least incapacitate her for months. It would seem that the Roach Medtechs had skills – worst luck.

Anyway … Ceara was riled up about something and only stopped swearing at him in Irish after Astra had screamed into the phone that she wasn’t pregnant. This had happened just as there was a small gap in the music, for Drina to deliver a talk break. So … it was quiet, and all eyes had turned to Astra.

At any other time, this would have been ‘roll on the floor laughing’ funny but Faolán just knew this would be neither the time nor place to point this out, or indeed laugh. Hugging the blushing woman fiercely and kissing her quickly, promising to return as soon as he can calm his irritated sister. He beats a hasty retreat to the nearby Anima Well.

Stepping from the well in Agartha there is a slight wave of vertigo. This was apparently a relatively common side-effect of ‘well’ travel in those not graced by a Bee. It was only his family’s special relationship with the Gods of the Aesir and theirs with Gaia that allowed him and his sisters to use them.

He heads straight to Axel’s … he needs to try and calm his sister. Thinking as he rushed, that she was way too much like her mother and he didn’t want to risk her temper. Deep down, he knew that what he’d decided would likely not sit well with her. But he wanted to stay, he was beginning to believe this wasn’t an impossible dream. It was impossible not to see there were small differences between the worlds, the significance of these differences, he could presently only guess.


Ceara’s eyes widened and her jaw dropped, “Oh, Gods! … he wasn’t alone …” this fact had been hammered home by Astra’s shout.

She wasn’t pregnant. To be completely honest with herself she was of two minds regarding this. Half of her was relieved Astra wasn’t pregnant. One less thing to tie Poo to this world.

Although the white gold ring gracing her left ring finger, in the shape of a wolf with beautiful dark sapphire eyes, chasing its tail, was concerning. It had Faolán written all over it.

The other half of her was a little disappointed. She sort of thought she may like being an aunty.

She threw her phone at the bed, she also thought she had an inkling of what her idiot brother was thinking.

Even though they had spoken on the phone a few times since they’d finally made contact, they hadn’t met face to face. He must have been deliberately avoiding her, avoiding the need to tell her what he was thinking.

Sure, the desert was big, and the evidence pointed to the fact that he’d spent a lot of time hunting down Roach fire teams. These teams had been hunting down the nomadic Bedouin. Both seemed to be hunting something else and she suspected she knew what that something was too.

They’d agreed to meet at Axel’s. The first face to face meeting since they’d started this little adventure.

As she dressed, she pondered the time discrepancies. Faolán had only traveled a week or two before her, yet when she arrived here, she found he’d already been here for over a year. It had taken her and Áinfean thaa week or two before they managed to finally work out how Leannan Roxy had used the Time Tomb near the Roman Ruins to rescue Astra. Ceara had arrived about a year ago, by this world’s reckoning.

Muttering to herself as she dresses, “I wonder how much time has passed … home.”


A short time later Ceara stops at the entrance to Axel’s. She takes a steadying breath and needlessly brushes down her little red dress, as she finally steps through the door. Her eyes scan the restaurant until they find that familiar face.

The siblings’ eyes lock and smiles split their faces. The reality of how much they had missed each other strikes them both.

Ceara moves forward, covering the distance between them quickly and without a spoken word. Faolán stands up quickly, almost pushing over his chair in his haste. They embrace and she can’t help but feel the roughness of the scar left by the wound across the right side of the back of his chest.

Frowning, she turns him around and moves his top enough for her to see the scar. Turning him back she looks into his eyes, “Mum’s going to kill you … you know that, right?”

Further conversation is halted by the arrival of a waitress pen poised, looking at them expectantly. The pair take their seats and remain silent apart from giving their order. Simple fare … A chicken schnitzel with chips and gravy for Faolán and a chili and garlic heavy Linguine Turismo for Ceara. They both order pints of ice-cold Lager.

The waitress looks between the near silent couple uncertainly before hurrying off.

Faolán watches his sister as the waitress leaves. Thinking, “Why does she have to look so much like Mum? If it wasn’t for her hair and her Cogaidh Marc … (the lightly scarified tattoo of a fang extending below each of her eyes), she’d be the splitting image of their mother.”

He moistens his lips a little, “I’m really happy to see you … I knew you and Áiny would find a way.” Her expression suggests that she is happy and disappointed at the same time.

Sighing lightly, “Who have you been talking to? … I’m guessing Al?”

Sipping his lager, stalling. He wants to try and find out just how much she knows without giving too much away … At least not while in ‘yeeting’ range.

Ceara is watching his every move, looking for his ‘tells’ but the sneaky sod is hiding his mouth behind his glass. Eyes latched onto his she takes a healthy mouthful of her own lager and gives a huff of irritation through her nose. There is an uncomfortable silence between them that really only lasts a few seconds before she nods in affirmation to his guess.

After the nod the silence again extends for a long second or three. She too is good at this game of seeking and protecting information. Besides, she’s uncertain she wants to get to the meat of the issue straight away. The topic will probably have them fighting and it’s been a long while since she’s seen her younger brother (by all of nearly twenty minutes).

“I can’t believe I’m saying this … but, I have really missed you Poo.” She takes another mouthful of her beer, “Are you still in the desert … fighting the Roach by yourself? Are you really looking for that … umm … thing that was lost way back then?”

She stops talking and furrows her brow a little. Before he can get a word in, “That’d be only a year or two ago … Here, I mean … Right?”

Nodding, “I’ve missed you too … It’s been … Gods, how long?” Better words rise and die in his throat, but he doesn’t need much more. On one hand he wants nothing more than to wrap her up in a hug and never let her go. On the other hand … well. One thing at a time.

She can’t help but smile softly at his heartfelt “I missed you too”. It’s all she can do not to fly into his arms and try and hug the stupid idea she’s sure is forming in that oh so empty but lovable head of his.

He nods. “The Roach don’t give up, so I can’t either.” A growl rises in the back of his throat as he spits a name. “That Viper’s damn hard to kill, and harder to find lately.”

She takes another mouthful of beer, speaking over him a little, “You really think the Bedouin, have it? And that’s why the Roach are so active against them?” Ceara stops a second “I’ve heard Al mention this Viper … who’s that?” There is another pause and she looks at him incredulously “Wait … Viper’s the woman who shot you … right? … Poo, how could you let that happen?”

Faolán sighs, “I didn’t think she could breathe with a bashed skull and a set of crushed ribs, never mind shoot!” He puts his glass down, heedless of the strange looks around them. “The Bedouin at least have it easier than they did, even if I’m still not sure if they have what I’m looking for.” He pauses, then delicately takes a bite from the ever present bread roll, chewing his words over as much as his snack. “But that should be a nonissue anyway when you get back home.”

Ceara is watching Faolán’s face as he answers again. Nodding in agreement with his assessment of the plight of the Bedouin following his intervention.

Internally she winces at the risk he’d taken fighting this ‘Viper’. As he chews his snack, she starts to glance towards the kitchen only to have her eyes fly back to him at his last statement, “So it’s true!”

Faolan holds up a hand. “I think … it’s not set in stone yet.”

Ceara’s sapphire blue eyes lance into Faolán’s, her expression suddenly cold. The scarified tattoos below her eyes made that expression that much more threatening.

“You are not playing with this girl’s heart, are you Poo!”

Faolan’s eyes go wide. “Wha … What! … No! Why would you even ask that?!”

His eyes are locked by those of his older sibling as she studies his every reaction to her question.

“I have talked to Astra and Alpharius … admittedly I think he was mainly ‘shit-stirring’ and I took what he said with a grain of salt … But her … Astra … She seems quite certain that you have made up your mind.”

Ceara holds his eyes for a moment longer before releasing them with a blink. Leaning a little closer, she reaches for one of his hands, “Poo … have you thought this through? … Really thought this through?” She takes a sighing breath, “What about Áiny … Mum and Da … the twins?”

Faolan shuffles uncomfortably in his seat, but accepts her hand and gives it a squeeze. “I know … I know… I miss them too, and I’ve missed you, and I think you’ve all missed me. But … look, we all leave home at some point to start our own lives … and … I’ve found where I want to be.”

“Besides, home’s kind of a mess. How many bombs have gone off? Half a dozen, more?” He gives her hand another squeeze, “Maybe I can do something about that here!”

Ceara returns the gentle squeeze of the hand, smiling softly at his acknowledgement that he misses them. The smile does fade slightly at the assertion that everyone leaves home at some point. To be completely honest, she had never considered the situation, but she could resonate with the fact that he had found where he wanted to be.

His comment that accompanied the second gentle hand squeeze triggers a thought that on reflection she should have recognised the significance of much earlier. A difference she’d noted previously in passing. There must be a rational explanation.

Faolán remains quiet as he recognises the far away look in her eyes as she ponders something she obviously considers important. She slowly nods in response to his comment but her mind has silently started sharing with him the facts she has at hand.

She counts off the detonations she knew of that had occurred at home; Apart from Tokyo, there had been the destruction of Moscow, Beijing, Quebec, Havana, Kingston and Buenos Aires. The latter had occurred after Faolán had ‘traveled’. Moscow, Beijing, and Quebec had all occurred before the middle of 2021. Then the war appeared to stabilize for the next decade or so, before Havana and Kingston experienced similar fates; these had occurred between 2033 and 2036 just before he traveled.

Then just after he had traveled the Filth had hit Buenos Aires.

Faolán’s eyes widened at that piece of news, speaking out loud, “Buenos Aires too? Gods… No, I hadn’t heard about that one.” Faolan shakes his head and cups his chin in tired resignation. A mundane horror laces his tone, as if hearing about a hurricane or an earthquake rather than yet another weapon of mass destruction.

Here there only had been Tokyo.

Squeezing his hand firmly, she silently warns him of the waitress’ imminent return with their meals. She releases his hand and sits back so the meals could be placed. Faolán gives the waitress a roguishly appreciative smile, then tucks in. Ceara continues silently, “I’m an idiot! I should have thought of this earlier. … Unless the cover up has been super effective? … Either way, we need to look at this more closely.”

She inwardly chuckles at the roguish smile he flashes at the waitress. She more plays with her pasta as he starts to wolf down the perfectly cooked schnitzel. She hadn’t watched her brother eating for what seemed like an age and watching him now … it could be easy to forget about the situation they were in.

It’s only five or six bites in that Ceara’s words sink in, and he wipes his mouth with his arm before speaking.

“Commorragh?” He swallows and then tries again. “Cover-up? No way, you’d have an easier time covering up a mushroom cloud. It’d be hard enough to hide that from the general population, never mind Mum and Da’s network, or the Roach stuff I’ve been able to tap into. Or–heck, you think we’d’ve heard about it from Al or Leannan Roxy by now.” A certain third party goes unmentioned, though the pause and smile before he resumes his meal gives a probable hint.

She nods, agreeing with his assessment of the likely success of trying to hide a series of filth bombs or similar events … hell, back in the day they had trouble getting people to believe that the New York incident was anything more than an unfortunate gas explosion.

Smothering the snort that would have resulted in beer coming out her nose when she receives the accidental projection from Faolán … in doggo, sitting there staring at an image of Astra, with that dopey doggo grin Ceara loved so much, his tail wagging so hard that it would make a Labrador proud.

Hiding her amusement behind her beer, Ceara nods in confirmation, “There are a number of differences … I don’t know what they mean.” There is a pause and she looks at him with a quizzical expression “What did you think when you heard of Atreus?”

“To be honest, I didn’t know what to think. It was so weird…” He pauses, then offhandedly adds, “And not just because it wasn’t Mum who was pregnant this time around.”

Even though he’d braced, Faolán had obviously forgotten how fast his sister was as she struck his shoulder with a firm punch, “Poo!!” Still he soldiered on, making a show of massaging his ‘injured’ shoulder, “Still, it was … weird I mean. Home, Leannan Roxy was always wonderful, but now–here–whatever, she’s actually family. She’s carrying our baby brother, and I know that’s not what happened back home.”

Sitting back as he continues, Ceara absently twirls the Linguini with her fork before spearing a prawn. Nodding at his assessment of their adoptive aunt, then shaking her head a little “Nope, there was no Atreus at home … Nor was there an Alexandra … “

Taking the mouthful of pasta she’d been twirling, she spends a moment enjoying the texture and the flavour, pointing her fork at her brother and with a partially full mouth, “This is good … this is really good.” She savours the moment a little longer before swallowing.

“Another difference, ever since Atreus, her war with Astra’s uncle … , has cooled.” Now grinning mischievously, knowing that he knows she could have just said Alpharius and left Astra out of it.

Ceara’s mischievous trap bears fruit as his mind drifts to his Fiance, and his eyes catch Ceara’s smothered snort and grins sheepishly as he realises that his inner thoughts hadn’t been entirely private. With a little difficulty he drags his mind back to the problem at hand.

Ceara, still with a small smirk gracing her face, continues “Remember how she used to come home some nights in a white-hot rage from something he’d been reported of supposedly having said or done and Da having to work really hard to calm her down? … Admittedly, home Al was a real cv#t. What else can you call the one who sold us all out and delivered the bombs.” Taking a small breath, “Here, that doesn’t happen and the bombs haven’t happened either.”

Still rubbing his punched shoulder for effect, “Huh, really? That’s … Really … They’re getting along? Or at least not at war?” He taps his chin, thinking back to his mum’s fiery temper and how he learned to avoid even saying Al’s name around her.

She gives an absent-minded nod confirming the present state of play between their mother and Alpharius.

Suddenly Ceara’s eyes widen in surprise as his thoughts wander to what he could have been thinking of. Barking a laugh, her face now sporting a teasing smile, "SHIELD POO! … SHIELD! … I mean she’s very pretty and I could look at her all day … BUT … You’re my brother and Ewww.”

Foalan blushed furiously, indignantly. “Well stop looking!”

As an answer, Ceara snorts another laugh and she can almost smell the wet doggo odour as Faolán throws up a cold-water shower shield.

With a little difficulty, he forces himself back into the present. “Man, things really are different here.”

Ceara nods quickly in agreement regarding his opinions that things are very different here. Her amused expression turns to one of pondering as she twirls more pasta onto her fork and delivers it to her mouth. She chews and swallows, all the while watching Faolán, before stating;

“Have you noticed something about Mum … the here Mum, I mean … when compared to the home Mum.” She continues, not waiting for Faolán to reply, “She looks exactly the same?!” Again, pushing on “Da too. I’ve met him once since I got here. It was by accident, in Agartha, not long after I … traveled. I don’t think he recognised me, I’d hidden my Rune and the here Ceara wouldn’t have chosen her Cogaidh Marc yet. I didn’t hang around for long … he would have been sure to place my scent.”

“It just dawns on me that Mum and Da here look just the same as home … Da has a few more creases about his eyes, but they hardly look older … Mum could have just walked in from another room.”

He frowns and ponders her question. “I mean, why would Mum and Da be different here? I haven’t seen them in person, but I’ve seen them through pictures and video feeds. Why would it be weird for them to be the same?”

She takes a bit of a breath “Here it’s 2021 … there is 2036 … that’s all I was thinking …” Sighing, “I probably shouldn’t be surprised.”

He thinks more about the two sets of Mum and Da… “Would 15 years make much of a difference?”

Ceara is lost in thought about the lack of difference. Meanwhile Faolán’s mind has moved on to ‘The Elephant In The Room’. He takes another bite and chews as he thinks, “I know you want to go back to Mum and Da and the rest. Just … don’t you want to meet Atreus first? He’s our brother.”

She blinks a few times as the implication of his last comment has the new reality bite. He has definitely decided that he is staying and that when she returns home she’d never see him again … she catches his eyes with hers and they start to moisten over. She said quietly “I think I’d like that … meet our brother, I mean.”

Faolán squeezes her hand. “I think it’d be nice… at least once.”

A tear rolls from her eyes but she smiles as he retakes her hand and returns the little squeeze, nodding in agreement.

Her expression turns a little more serious, “Poo … I can see why you want to stay.” She quickly holds up a staying hand as she continues, “But hear me out. I know it’s hard to consider leaving the garden of Edan to return to a sewer … but it might be something we have to do.”

Seeing that he’s bursting to interject she holds up the staying hand again, “Wait … I’ve contracted Alpharius to try and find a way to contact Áiny … We’ve always been ‘Pack’ … If we can, shouldn’t we hear Áiny’s view?”

Faolan’s grin fades. “Have to do, what even…” He sighs, knowing exactly what she means. Still he nods. “It … would be nice to talk to her again.” Thinking even if my mind is made up, she’s still my sister. It had been so long … and besides, if they’d made enough progress to be able to communicate across dimensions. it’s not like it would be the only chance he’d ever have to talk to her again.

“All right. Let’s at least find out if we can get in touch with her.”

Next: Death Of A Dimension - Part 1