Passages 2

University - #212 Newberry Road: 2 AM

The wind sighed, lifting the silk, weighing it, dropping it. He was kneeling on the end of the bed, looking down at her, framed in silk.

Scene 1

Rayne breathed, soft and careful, in case, just in case she was not dreaming. "You're not real."

He shifted, drawing up one long leg, heavy boots, biker’s boots, leather and denim and light in his blue eyes. The bed did not move the way it would, the way it should, if he were real. He wasn’t really there. He said, "I'm not a dream."

It was a dream though. She was circling the blurry event horizon between dream and reality but she could see down into it and it was, it was a dream. Her dream self sat up and tried to reach out to him with dream arms that did not respond, broken wooden things hanging from her shoulders. “You've been there so long. Why can't I find you? I keep looking but I can't find you. What are you? Who are you?"

"You named me, Rainie."

The bottom fell out of it, cold wind in the candle flame. She was awake. Of course it hadn’t been real.

She had not named him...if she had, if she could name him, maybe she could find him. She was drifting in the dark with no name. She couldn’t even hold onto the dream much less the man. Awake in this silent place, she wasn't used to so much silence, very much alone and no closer than she had ever been to understanding anything.

Rayne tucked her head under her arm, slid her cheek against the cool cotton pillowcase, feeling it against her skin, feeling the loss. She was cold. She wanted to go home. She wanted to be five years old again tucked in her own bed. She clenched her hands in the sheet and cried.

9 AM

"Ryan called? Right in the middle of everything like that?"

Rayne cradled the cup of coffee, savoring the warmth in her hands as well as her mouth. She was still chilled, could not seem to get warm. She poked at the cold iron chair leg with her toe. "Yeah he did. He wants to talk."

The sunlight never quite reached the balcony on the north side of the rental; it felt filtered, light brewed through a coffee filter. Rayne had discovered moss on the floor, discovered it after she slipped and fell. The dream hung over her. She couldn't shake it, and she shivered again.

"Why did you even answer the phone?” Miranda demanded. “ Wasn't Cruz pissed?"

"I don't know why I answered, it surprised me, and yeah he was pissed. Major pissed. He asked a lot of questions. It'll be ok, I'll make it up to him."

They sat there for a while in the deep early morning quiet. "You look kind of ragged," Miranda commented. "Actually you look like shit. Are you ok?"

She was anything but ok, not after dreaming about HIM again, not with some kind of thing with Ryan looming out there, what she'd done to Ryan. Never, never had she said anything to anyone about that dream man, and she never would, but at least she could talk to Randi about Ryan. Shaking herself, Rayne tried to focus. "I can't sleep here, that's all. It's too quiet. There's no way Ryan knows, is there? You didn't tell anyone, did you?"

"Of course I didn't. My dad didn't tell anyone but your mom. I'm positive he didn't. And you know she’s never going to breathe a word about it. Maybe it's nothing. Maybe he just wants to say hi."

She doubted that. Rayne stood up, watching her own feet carefully, avoiding the freaking moss. "Be careful, it's slick out here. I fell on my ass the other day. I need to talk to my dad about fixing it somehow.”

Rayne turned in the landing above the stairs, deeply uneasy, reluctant to let Randi go yet. “Do you really think he just wanted to say ‘hi’?”

They looked at each other. If he had wanted to say ‘hi’, he would have done that over the phone. Rayne knew it. She could tell Randi knew it too. "I don't know," Randi told her quietly. "All you can do is keep saying nothing happened. If that’s what you want to do."

Of course that’s what she wanted to do. Rayne followed her back downstairs. The world outside was waking up, trash can rattling, somebody across the street yelling about something. It might have been Wyatt, it sounded like him. Maybe the garbage truck was in his way.

At the front door, Randi paused. “You know I wish we’d been able to share a place like we planned. It wouldn’t have been so quiet.”

Rayne finally squeezed out a smile. “Yeah, but your dad stopped that. Mine would have been good with it. He actually knows who you are and I think he likes you.”

Miranda laughed as she walked out. “He doesn’t know me that well then. Call me as soon as you get back from Ryan, k?”

She wandered back upstairs and stood there for a while, trying to ignore the ache in her back. She’d slept wrong. She'd dreamed wrong. She had to get dressed. Maybe she was going about this the wrong way. Maybe she should just come right out and tell him. That’s probably what he would do. No, she couldn’t do that, it would kill him to know. That would be sacrificing him for her own peace of mind, to get it over with. He didn't deserve that pain; let him keep dreaming. Let it go and give him something even if it wasn't real.

“Okay,” she whispered aloud. “Let’s go do this.”

Scene 3


NEXT CHAPTER: Passages 3


S.B. said...

I want to thank Gayl for the fabulous job she did editing my dream sequence. I can't use Photoshop to save my life. Thank you...for everything.

And thanks to everyone who has been so supportive while I start something new. It means a lot.

Gayl said...

Poor much hanging over her; it broke my heart to hear her wishing to be 5 again.

Beautifully done!

S.B. said...

thank you Gayl.

btw, if anyone knows some kind of trick to build a beam across the opening so the lanterns don't hang in midair, I'd love it know it.

Muzegoddess said...

First I have to say the shots are amazing. The enhancments and detail add so much to the whole experience (because this is so much more than just a story).

I love where this is going. I'm on edge right now wondering just what the heck Ryan wants. He was smiling so maybe that's a good thing. I love that we can still see Gabe, even if only through Rayne's dreams. I can't believe that she has held onto that as long and as tightly as she has.

She seems to have inherited some of her father's darkness, letting things from the past haunt her in a way. If only she knew who he really is.

Wonderful update; can't wait for the next one :)

P.S. Is there a reason why Rafe didn't want Rayne and Randi to room together (other than the fact that Cooper isn't his favorite person)?

S.B. said...

Muzegoddess, what a fantastic insight! Yes, Rainie does seem to have inherited Coop's shadow.

Ryan is fond of Rayne. The smile was automatic. She's not a little girl anymore though. What's striding toward him is not what he expects.

Oh god yeah there's a reason why Rafe doesn't want his daughter rooming with Rayne. He knows Rayne seduced Ryan, deceived him and took him. It doesn't have anything to do with Cooper.

Thank you so much on the shots - coming from you, I am SO flattered! The dream sequence would not be the same without Gayl's Photoshop ability. I can't blur shots.

Again, thank you. Your support means so much to me.

Dinuriel said...

Hooooo boy... just look at the difference in their expressions. This is certainly going to be awkward for Rayne--here's hoping she doesn't let anything slip.

Gorgeous pictures :)

S.B. said...

thank you so much Dinuriel.

I was actually able to get the pics in one day. Although Gayl's work on the dream shots was invaluable. Wouldn't be the same without the blur.

Actually, I sort of want her to just tell the man what happened. Let him deal with it. She's no teenager now.

again, thank you SO MUCH for reading and commenting!

Phoenix said...

As always gorgeous shots. I love the scenery when they're outside drinking coffee! Beautiful!

In a way I sorta feel bad for Rayne...but sorta not. *shrug* I don't know. If I were in her place I don't think I'd want to tell Ryan after this long but I want her to tell him! LOL!!

I can't wait to see what happens at this meeting! And whatever happened to Ryan's kid? How old would she/he(I can't remember what it was) be now?

Wonderful, wonderful job!

S.B. said...

Phoenix, I fussed with that scenery for a long time, so I am so glad you noticed! I was trying to cover bare spots in the view and hide pixelated stuff - Wyatt's place.

Yeah, I sort of want Rayne to tell him the truth. She's not a child anymore. Guess it depends on what he has to say.

Ryan's son Riley (there are way too many R people at this point) - he would be about the same age as Cooper's twin sons, I guess. Gayl, correct me if I'm wrong. We didn't do anything with the kids while they were small. Maybe we can get Riley into the picture. I'd personally like that.

Thank you! I'm very pleased you liked it!

Penelope said...

I'm totally at work, reading your chapter. *heeee!* I should close my doors before someone walks in here.

And holy crap! Ryan STILL doesn't know he slept with Rayne? That's... I don't know what to think about that. That's awful. I feel like he deserves to know but at the same time I have no clue what the implications of that would be. No matter what happens there, it will be a shock.

Dream man is hotter than Cruz! And hotter than Ryan as well but it's not like Ryan was ever an option.

Ryan! He looks so pleasant and happy to see her. I wonder that she might spill the beans just to save her peace of mind.

S.B. said...

Hi Pen! yeah, probably safer with my stuff to close the doors hehe...

Ryan still doesn't know. What are the implications? Not sure if there are still legal problems, whether there's some statute of limitations on statutory rape. It would fundamentally change his relationship with Rayne, probably destroy it. She doesn't want that. And she may not be jail bait any longer, but if her father found out, he'd go after Ryan and bring a gun with him this time.

I still really want it to happen though! It would shut off yet another source of support for Rayne, and I'm interested in pursuing that.

Dream man...yeah. Gabe is always the source of light in a room. His son is hot, but can't quite match his father.

Thank you! And I just read your update and LOVE LOVE it!

~Drew said...

Well the shots, as always, amazing.

And I fell off my chair and bruised my ample hip at seeing Gabe again.
Wow. Hot as ever, dream or no dream, he is THE man.
I am dying to know what he has been up to all this time, will we be even given a hint?
I think Cruz comes pretty close, but cannot touch that inner flame that is Gabe.
And poor Ryan, he really doesn't have a clue. Horrible,
Great update!!

S.B. said...


I thought you'd appreciate that, Drew!

No, no hint about what he's been doing. If he's even still alive. He's the nuclear bomb in my back pocket, and I'm keeping it right there for a while LOL.

I'm not sure how clueless Ryan is. He practically raised her, but she's Cooper's daughter. and she has her own agenda.

Thank you!!!

S@ndy said...

Sooo glad to see Gabe again!!

I feel so sorry for Rayne, Gabe made such a big impression on her, and after what 15 years? she can't forget him!!!

Looks like she remembers every single curve of his face and body... she was sooo small back then, and Gabe became her prince, and she still hanging to his memory...

I think she will be comparing every man she meets with her dream man...that is not good for her... she will be always looking for Gabe in other faces, and she will probably wont find him...she should just let it go... and focus in the "Real men" around her... it is never good to hold on to a dream... or a memory...
Poor Rayne... she looks so lost and confuse... and soo haunted for the foolish things she did...

I don't know if talking to Ryan would be a good idea at all...
There is a big possibility that after 'the talk' she will end up feeling even worse...

What a dilemma!!!

Ryan looks so happy to see her.... what a beautiful smile!

It just breaks my heart to see Rayne like that!!! :(

Wonderful update!!!
Really, Beautiful dream sequence... it really was dreamy and just beautiful and perfect!

Another great update!!! I can't wait for more!!!

S.B. said...

You're right, S@andy.

Rayne met Gabe at a critical point in her life. He was, to her, a literal prince, larger than life, mythopoeic. The impact was enormous. All the more so because he also seemed vulnerable, asking her not to tell. It was a pact between them. He rescued her. She was not going to betray him.

No one is going to measure up to that standard.

She is confused. But pretty freaking strong as well. And armed with attitude and a lot of brat weapons.

She depended on Ryan. She used him. She should feel bad.

That dream sequence is, again, due to Gayl's spectacular talent!

Thank you so much!

Mao said...

Oh boy, that is the question, what does Ryan want? I'm seriously curious and anxious all the same. It can't be good, can it? Years of dusting things under the rug, I think the dust is about to come out from hiding...

That dream sequence, too, wow. What the hell is going on in Rayne's head? She really is confused. And who is that dude? It isn't Cruz, it isn't Gabe... but why does he look familiar? Bah, Beth! Evil, lol.

Also, I have to mention that I didn't realize Cruz was Amanda and Gabe's illegitimate spawn until like, a day or so ago. I know, I know, I'm slow. :x

Mao said...

Okay, after reading other's comments, it's Gabe. I guess I just fail at Gabe recognition, LOL! Maybe it was the lack of a shit storm following on his coat tails... ;)

S.B. said...

lmao Mao...well Gabe might be dead. That would explain the lack of a shit storm - you have me laughing so hard about that!. For now anyway. And he was sort of romanticized, up there with flowers and curtains and all that. Not Gabe's normal milieu.

Yeah. Cruz is his kid. Which I find particularly funny.

What does Ryan want? News from the front perhaps?

Thank you!!

goodbye_sun said...

Damn, Ryan just looks so...oblivious and Rayne looks as relentless as she always is with everyone except her closest friends. I'm already placing my bet that she wins.

And still so fixated on Gabe, not good, not good at all.

S.B. said...

goodbye_sun, that's a good bet. She may not want to shoot Ryan down, but she's in a position to do it. And she knows it. It's her choice. Whether she does it or not will depend on what he says, and how she takes what he says. and her mood in general.

The fixation on Gabe is not good. In no way good.

and I wanted to thank you for helping me with some of my LJ problems. Thanks again!

xtinabobina said...

again, lovely screens.

i think its the way you position your camera angle. it really makes a difference in your illustrations.

i also got a good look at chinatown. did you build that lot yourself? very nice!

ps, snapshot 6 is REALLY amazing.

S.B. said...

xtina, the Chinatown lot was one we downloaded and really REALLY altered. I'm not sure where we got it from since it was a long time ago. Gayl used it the first time in Sessions, way back. It didn't work raw, had to be heavily modified.

I really have been inspired by the camera angles used by other writers. I keep trying.

thank you so MUCH!!

Anonymous said...

First off, I have to drool over your eye for detail, per usual. Your sets are insane, I can only wish. That dream sequence was intense, and Rayne's reaction to it, her sadness, oy it was poignant.


I'm so glad you're doing this :D

S.B. said...

Oh Veron THANK YOU!!!

The sets...wellll...the detail may distract from the lack of content LOL! I can hope anyway.

Rayne is definitely haunted. Both by 'dream guy' and by what she did to Ryan.

Again, thank you for reading and leaving me a comment! I am thrilled!

Lachesis said...

Ah, nothing like a dream-lover. I'm sure I should know who this guy is, but you know me, I came in in the middle of this, so I'll just stay in suspense. LOL

Well, it's nice to know Rayne has guilt about what she did to Ryan. Hopefully she will keep her mouth shut, he doesn't need that.

S.B. said...

LOL Lachesis! Dream lover has appeared in a number of places, so that's probably why you think you recognize him! You do.

Rayne does feel guilty and bad. Keeping her mouth shut might not be the best thing though.

thank you so much!

cheripye said...

Hmmm... Rayne seems to be thinking an awful lot and I cant help but wonder if Cruz's similar looks to her prince could have something to do with her dream man. LOL! 80)

Great cliff hanger, she really doesnt look happy and what a burden to carry. Tell him or not tell him. 80)

S.B. said...

Hi Cherie!

thank you so much for reading!

Cruz is coincidental. Rayne has been haunted by Gabe since she was a child and he rescued her. Cruz does look like him since he's Gabe's son. But it's about Gabe, not Cruz.

again, thank you for reading and commenting!

Emily said...

First of all...*pants* for dream Gabe! If I can recover from that, I can actually comment! LOL. What beautiful shots those are, kudos to you and Gayl.

I did feel bad for Rayne here, she's way too young to be regretting so much. :(

Randi is cute! I laughed about Rafe not wanting them to room together!

Fabulous update as always! Slowly catching back up, yay!

S.B. said...

LOL thanks Emily! Gabe is and always has been very photogenic!

Rayne has done some things she needs to regret. Having Gabe haunting her does not help though.

Randi is fantastic!

and thank you again! I know how hectic things are for you!

Colliegirl said...

The subconscious mind is really amazing sometimes... how it can remember such tiny, important details... even many years later. Just... bang! It comes back, seemingly from nowhere! Lol!

I got a thrill out of seeing Gabe again. He's looking pretty good! I don't blame her for dreaming about him. He really made an impact on her as a child.

Too bad she hasn't gotten over him, though - since he's so sadly unattainable - not unless some kind of miracle happens. Lol! She really does need to let go of the guy and stop comparing every one she meets to him. She never actually got to really know him, so what is there to compare them to? Just an ideal? I guess she's just plain dissatisfied with how her life is going... probably more with herself, actually. Poor girl.

Sorry, this may seem brief. I have to go to work now! See ya later!

Great writing! Great pics!!!

S.B. said...

You're right, Colliegirl, her dissatisfaction is with herself and her life. There's no way anyone will ever meet the 'Gabe' standard since it's unreal. She's not likely to give up until she runs headlong into that disconnect.

thank you so much for your continued support.

Valpre said...

Ah, man, this made me so sad "She had not named him...if she had, if she could name him, maybe she could find him. She was drifting in the dark with no name. She couldn’t even hold onto the dream much less the man."
Damn that Gabe's messed her up. Now everyman will never be good enough for her. Amazing shots and beautiful writing. I think I know why I always put of reading your work. The beauty of it always makes me want to cry.

Now Ryan seems like trouble. I'm a bit lost on what's the deal with him. Hopefully I'll get it in the next few chapters.

S.B. said...

oh Val, you made my day. Thank you so much! Writing doesn't come as naturally to me as it does to some people; I really appreciate the support.

Gabe is a rogue, but he really isn't to blame for Rayne's obsession. He tried to be kind to a little girl. The encounter happened at a particularly vulnerable moment in her life, when her mother and father were fighting, and he sort of appeared and rescued her.

Ryan is another matter. At this point he doesn't have a clue about how Rayne feels about him. He's been in love with her mother for years.

Again, thank you so much!