Crazyface Bird, Friend of Laptop Girl

From From The Ashes Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Aster tells Alma about a texting dead person.

Date: 11/07/2018


Nov 7, 2018 4:30pm

It's a little less than an hour before sunset. Alma is seated in one of the park benches off the main path on the grounds of the Hall of Science. Her bag is stowed under the bench and she is shuffling cards while she waits for Aster. Notion is perched on the back of the bench, studying Alma's cards.

Alma shuffles her Tarot deck.

Aster had called ahead, letting her know they had Things To Discuss, and their mutual friend Maya had passed along her phone number. They arranged the meeting, here on the WSU campus; and around the appointed time, Aster arrives, dressed in her big coat, jeans, and a thermal shirt. She approaches, recognising Alma from that one brief encounter, and waves an arm as she gets close. "Hey hey."

"Hey," Alma waves back. Her coat is a sturdy old thing. Two field notebooks fit in the front pockets, but one of them is out next to her. She's ready to take notes. "I know we sort of met, but not really. We seems to pass each othe by." She's a little awkward. "This is Notion, she's my" Alma looks around to make sure no students have wandered over since she settled in here. None have. "my familiar. We work together. What's going on?"

Aster glances around the area, making her own check that nobody's around to overhear Sensitive Information. Even so, she lowers her voice, because there's no sense in making unnecessary risks. "Nice to meet you, Notion. And re-meet you, Alma -- yeah, we bumped into each other that one time you and Wednesday came to see Maya."

She takes a breath. "I don't know yet. But a friend of mine, and some of /her/ friends, got an email from someone already deceased." She takes out her phone and shows a screenshot of the email, from one 'Jasar Lashgari'. The email simply reads, 'Is anyone out there? Is anyone seeing this?', and the domain of the 'from' address is garbled. "He died during that recent school shooting, and this email came after that."

Alma lays the Knight of Swords while Aster talks. She looks concerned. "Where did this person die? Do you know?" She looks over to Notion. "Ghosts don't last very long here." She draws another card and flips it over. Wheel of Fortune. Her eyes widen.

"The American Islamic Academy," Aster says. "Over in Dearborn." Her nose wrinkles. "...unless he was just /injured/ there and then died in hospital. You'd have to talk with my friend about it -- do you know Shadi?" Her head tilts. "What does that reading mean?"

Alma puffs out a breath when Aster mentions the academy. "Dearborn. That's good. I don't think the whippoorwills get out there." She looks down at her cards. "I'm still studying them. It's a three fate's spread, for guidance. I did one a few months ago and it ended in the Wheel of Fortune as well. Hmm, Shadi... Sounds familiar but I don't think so."

Aster nods. "Three fates, is that the one where a card each represents your past, present, and future? And Shadi... really, extremely pink Muslin girl? If you've ever met her at all, then that'll remind you."

Alma nods. "Yes. You can also have them represent Body, Mind, Spirit. There are a few ways to approach it. I'm doing one for guidance. So in this case the Queen of Wands represents the current situation. The Knight of Swords represents challenges... and the Wheel of Fortune represents guidance for the situation." Upon hearing 'pink' Alma grins. "Oh! I remember her! And she has a pink car and sings and I met her when I was talking to Kai." She reaches over to touch Notion's beak. "Note her cawed at her. She's got something against her for some reason. I don't know what's up with that. What is up with that, you."

Aster grins. "Ah, good. You do know her, then. And... she's already involved in 'our world' in a couple of different ways, so you can speak openly with her. Maya's offered her help, too, if you plan on summoning the ghost. So, what does the Wheel of Fortune /mean/ when it 'offers guidance'?"

Alma says, "It could be about the wheel and about how things change. Did you know that the Chakravanti are called 'the wheel turners'? I left them... and it's a hopeful card. Maybe I'm the guidance. I'm doing this for a friend. I don't often choose to interfere strongly in someone's life. Maybe in this case I should choose to. How often do you find yourself helping someone who doesn't accept help easily?" Alma searches Aster's face.

Aster smiles wryly. "Basically every single time I try to keep Maya from working herself to death. But other than that, people are usually pretty accepting of my help. They know me as 'the tech girl', so they come to me if they have tech issues. Like..." She grunts. "...something I'm /not/ looking forward to, in investigating that email itself."

"That's going to be something of a puzzle for me," Alma admits. "I totally hear you about Maya. I've gotten so angry with her in the past at how much she takes on. I've talked with one of her partners about it a little. Just to try and explain." She holds that thought a moment. "Ok, Shadi. I don't have her number. Let me get that from you. I don't do all that snapchat stuff. Are texts ok?"

Aster's phone is in her hand in the next split-second. "Texts are fine with her," she says. "She's a tiny bit paranoid -- not to the degree of my master, but still seriously serious about information security -- so going by texts is a good way to keep up some plausible deniability." As she speaks, she navigates to a contact labelled 'Unicorn Princess' and holds her phone out so Alma can read the number from her screen.

Alma opens up Signal on her phone and texts "hello from :crazyface: :bird: friend of :laptop: :girl:". Then she stores the contact as Unicorn Princess too.

Aster closes down the app. "I can forward you that screenshot of the email, too. Anything else you need from me?"

Alma tilts her head, looking off to the distance a bit before refocusing on Aster. "I don't think so? I have your number now, so I can contact you if I do. You too, ok?"

Aster nods firmly. "Sure thing. I have a bit of an, ah, digital expedition to plan. Keep me posted on how you're tackling things, alright? And don't forget to bug Maya for her help, too."