Hidden 2 days ago Post by rivaan
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Lisa groaned quietly as she very slowly became aware of her surroundings. Yeah last night she might have overdone it on the alcohol, but in her defense it was a major celebrations and a drinking shots game seemed like a good idea at the time. Hey they had done a small breakthrough in the project after a long stretch of nothing, they finally made progress, it was worthy of celebrating. Granted blasted device wasn't working, but she wasn't discouraged. They will get it to work eventually.

She turned slowly around and made herself comfortalbe in the presence of the other person in the bed with her. Rhiannon, the love of her wife and the most important person in Lisa's life. It wasn't a stretch to say that this beautiful perfect woman was what kept her from going off the deep end all these years. Between general life annoyances, her family always causing her problems and stress and finally some underlying psyhological issues stemming from said family that her psyche eval had discovered, Rhia's presence was the lone solitary harbor that she knew would always offer her safety in the storm that was her life. Now that's not to say that Lisa was crazy or unstable, she was actually quite well when it came to her mind, but without her lover, things all these years, she might have been a completely different person.

It was early morning, she had woken well at the crack of dawn it seemed. Rhiannon's sleeping face always made her smile. Her eyes traced the long eyelashes, the currently wild brown mane of bed hair and the adorable freckles. She never got tired of the sight and it did sooth her hangover some. So in the end she decided to just make herself more comfortable and try to get back to sleep until the time they had to leave for work later. With the breakthrough yesterday, they might actually be able to at least start the machine without fearing it burning out this time around! With a not malfunctioning machine that stays working instead of sparking, exploding, burning or anything else of the kind, they might be able to finally get somewhere. That was her hope. She knew their theories should be on point, now htey needed to test them properly. As her eyes closed down and she slipped in the land of dreams once more, she thought how perfect her life was currently. She had everything she wanted and the best part right now was that they had flexible working schedules, so it meant they didn't need to go early in the morning to work. As long as they met the required weekly quota, they were good, so even if they slept in this morning, they could fix it by staying a bit later or going early for the rest of the week.
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Rhiannon's eyes opened to bright sunlight and a painful throbbing in her head. She growled and threw her arm over her eyes. She had no idea how late it actually was but the sun was hitting right through their bedroom window now. In their drunken state the night before, neither of them had closed the curtains. Something Rhiannon found to be regretting heavily right now.

She turned away from the window and snuggled into the person next to her. The familiar smell of her lover's sleep shirt against her face filled her throbbing mind and Rhiannon felt calm despite the pain. Why do I even drink this much? It always gives me a headache. Granted, Rhiannon usually didn't get drunk. She enjoyed her alcohol in moderation. But yesterday had been a big day. Such a success! And just like that, Rhiannon began to growl again.

"Lis?", she whispered with a dry mouth. Then louder. "Lisa? How late is it? We gotta get to work." But the woman didn't look a single bit like she was ready to get up and go to work. Instead, she snuggled deeper into the wonderful smell and the softness of the shirt. Gosh, how lovely the warm blanket felt and their bodies close. She hoped this would never fade.

"Breakthrough", Rhiannon grumbled sleepily. "Need to get to work. Much...to do." Whatever her next words might've been, they got lost in the sleepy grumble packaging they came in. Rhiannon seemed about ready to slip back to sleep.
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Lisa had just about made herself most comfy and drifted away into dreamland completely, when a lovely soft voice pulled her attention back into the land of the awake. She let out a soft moan and a few impossible to make out mumbles that could have been anything from a string of swears to a poetic confession of love, it was a mystery that was likely going to sadly remain unsolved forever." Fineeeee..." She eventually let out as she very slowly pulled herself into a sitting position." We could have stayed in bed longer though..." She grumbled and looked at the equally sleepy Rhiannon. After a surprisingly for a half asleep person string of thoughts, she gave her wife a quick kiss on the cheek." Good morning, now wake up, sleepyhead. If ya wanted to stay napping, shouldn't have woken me up." And content with that, at least for the time being, she stood up and shuffling her feet dragged herself into the bathroom.

With head pounding, eyes hurting, stomach twisting and limbs feeling like lead, she just made her way under the shower and let the lukewarm water she set just fall on her for a little while. A cooling relaxing shower always cleared her head from many things nad luckily hangover was one of them. Didn't make all symptoms go away, but it helped enough that she was adequate afterwards as she went through the morning routine after the shower. After finishing in the bathroom, she walked out with with her still wet hair, nicely wrapped in a towel." Shower's free. Go freshen up, I will prepare breakfast in the meantime." She called out, walking over to the closet and a few minutes later walking away from it dressed in very simple trousers and a turtleneck blouse.

Lisa then proceeded to quickly fix up some eggs for omlets in the kitchen, keeping an eye on the digital display on the wall that had the time. When she eventually heard the pitter-patter of her wife's steps, she smiled." breakfast's almost ready. Want me to prepare some fresh orange juice to go with it or would you prefer water?"
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The sleepy woman let out one more growl as the comforting warmth moved and slipped away from her. Rhiannon would have liked to protest against her wife leaving the bed, even though it was her who had talked about getting up first. Her body wriggled closer to the sleeping spot her wife had just left and she snuggled into Lisa's pillow. The beauty of a morning cloud wrapped around her sleepy mind was too much bliss for Rhiannon to leave and so she drifted off into another restful few minutes.

She awake to Lisa's words, telling her that the shower was free. Rhiannon moaned in displeasure. "You're too loud", the woman beneath the messy bed-hair complained. She wasn't sure if Lisa had heard her complaint as no answer followed. With another groan, Rhiannon forced herself to slowly sit up. She felt like a zombie. And the throbbing in her head came right back to her.

Her limbs somehow managed to carry her to the bathroom and allow her to brush her teeth. Only when she had a clean mouth and had forced a brush through her hair did she enter the shower. Rhiannon could never shower with such tangled hair or bed-breath. It made her feel unclean. No. She enjoyed the feeling of stepping out of the shower and being entirely fresh. And her hair... well... you try to shower with strays of entangled hair and get your fingers through them while washing... It's not fun. And it's even less fun when you have entangled wet hair. So brushing first it was.

Once showered, Rhiannon grabbed a pain killer pill from their medicine cabinet in the bathroom and walked downstairs on bare toes and wrapped in a comfy cuddly bathrobe. The amazing smell of omelets wrapped around her head and made her smile sheepishly. But the throbbing still persisted and Rhiannon kept her eyes half-closed against the bright sunlight.

"Just water please." She seated her tired, heavy body at the kitchen table. Lisa handed her the desired glass of water and Rhiannon swallowed the pain killer and drank up the entire glass. Water was supposed to help. "I wanna continue right where we left off yesterday. I was thinking we could try to regulate the power with the electric buffer you put together - mind you, the only one that hasn't fried up yet - and we should be able to connect the blink drive safely to the motherboard of the portal. I don't wanna ask for resources for yet another blink drive. Those fuckers take ages to put together. After all, they're essentially what provides our portal with coordinates throughout time and space. Anyway. If we increase the power intake slowly and monitor the radiation closely, we might be able to figure out the exact numbers for a safe energy supply - oooh! omelets!"

Rhiannon's monologue halted as the picturesque breakfast was placed in front of her. "Thank you." At least the alcohol intake from last night hadn't interfered with Rhiannon's appetite. The food felt like a blessing in her mouth and she almost felt her body gaining energy. Like in a video game when you watch your health stat getting filled up. With a full mouth, Rhiannon continued her thoughts: "What I mean to say is that I am positive we can get the portal to turn on today AND connect the blink drive. If we're lucky we can start testing some dials. But I don't wanna get ahead of myself."

Rhiannon looked up at her wife sitting across the table from her now. A smile spread over her face as her heart skipped a beat. The view of Lisa still brought all the joys of their first kiss, their first 'I love you', their first sleepover with it. "You're beautiful. Do I tell you that enough?"
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"One glass of cool water, coming right up." Lisa replied, pulling a bottle of cooled water from teh fridge and pouring a glass of it for her wife, bringing it over to her and then returning to finishing the breakfast. Finally with the omplets complete, she began plating them and placed one in front of her wife and the other in front of her seat when she sat down."You're welcome. I know you like omlets. If everything goes well, tonight for dinner we can go out to eat at a nice fancy romantic restaurant. Red, wine, moonlit walk through the park afterwards..." She grinned." Ooooor... I can prepare your favorite things myself and we can just focus on having the best possible time instead."

"Well blink drive's very much important, I do agree with you, however don't forget the electromagentic field generator... Without the magentic containment field to stabilize the portal and protect anything inside it from the effects of the portal, who knows what might happen." She pointed out, after swallowing a mouthful of breakfast. The field was important to counteract the likely negative effects that time travel might have on the human body or any organic really. Though even it was a theoritical more than anything, but without it they could very well be certain that nobody would make it through the device without harm.

"Well, that said we don't need to worry for the electromagetic emitters, I fixed them yesterday when we fixed the powergrid. They now work off their own separate powerline and even if the rest of the prototype begins to fail, they would at least hold strong." Lisa grinned." I suggest we begin off 30% tops, we can increase the power after we let it run stable for abit with that amount. Honestly we are playing with some rather dangerous stuff and I'd rather not cause a time rift or something of Chernobyl proportions."

"You can tell it to me every day of the week, every hour and every minute and my heart will always skip a beat just as the first time you said it." Was Lisa's reply, a bit of a flush making it's way on her otherwise quite noble appearance." Besides, you are beautiful too, Rhiannon. You're the best thing that ever happened in my life. This I will always tell you, even ify ou get tired of hearing it." The raven haired woman let out a small grin.

As their meals rapidly vanished from their plates, an alarm was heard from the terminal in the room. She saw a messege appear on the screen on the wall. A code flashed for a moment and Lisa sighed." Sadly I think we've not go much time more to spare... let's go before the fools do somethign stupid and wreck what progress we finally made." The code in the messege indicated that external supervisors were going to be visiting today. Usually the government sent some people every now and then to spy on them, ask questions and generally be a pain in the ass.
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Hidden 20 hrs ago Post by Benzaiten
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Rhiannon took a big bite from her omelet as her wife rambled on about their portal. Passion rose within her. For the work they did and for the woman in front of her. She had seldom met a person who was just as interested in bending the existing physical rules of time and space as she was. Sure, many scientists enjoyed bantering about it a little. But rarely one was seriously considering attempting it. With their project being top-secret under the government's thumb, Rhiannon of course couldn't actively talk about her work with anyone except the people who worked with her. And the smartest of 'em all was sitting right in front of her.

"I am aware of the electromagnetic field. And we will run it for safety always. But I am not considering sending anything through yet. Let alone something alive. I am hoping we can stabilize the power intake enough to provide the portal with the right amount of energy to turn it on and hopefully interact with the blink drive as expected. Opening the portal for travel without a safe working connection to the blink drive would be mad. We would have no idea where and when we would land and we'd have no way back. If we get a stable enough connection, I might consider putting the first miniature drone through the portal. But I am not expecting the connection to hold and we can't send anything through that hasn't explicitly been authorized. And that means we'd have to sit in a room with stuffy air and thick-ass walls for hours on end with the government people and our boss again and explain every little step of our project. If we send something from this time through and it actually lands in the past... that could cause such ripple effects. But why am I talking about this? You know all that. We've run through millions of scenarios of what might happen - both amusing and terrifying - since we met in college." Rhiannon reached across the table to stroke over the back of Lisa's hand with her index fingers. "I am positive we are gonna see great progress within the next few months. I am so excited!"

As the alarm rang and the code flashed before her eyes, Rhiannon let out a growl-sigh sound. Not again. "Speaking of the devil... What do they want from us? Do they have to come in every month. I swear you lift a little finger to test the breeze and they ask you what you've eaten for breakfast the last three weeks, down to the molecular level." Rhiannon lifted herself off the chair and laid a hand on her forehead to rub it softly. Her headache was already getting a bit better but it hadn't faded yet. She found it impressive how Lisa was coping so well. The woman definitely had more to drink yesterday than Rhiannon. She just could handle more.

"I'll get dressed." She walked a step over to her wife, put a hand on her shoulder, and leaned down to kiss her. She lingered in the moment for a few seconds, allowing herself to enjoy the lips of the person she loved most in the whole world. Then she broke the kiss, gave Lisa a soft smile, and tiptoed back upstairs.

Rhiannon's general style could be described as mood-depended. The woman had shown up to work in joggers in a hoodie as much as she had shown up in heels, a blazer, and with a real hairdo. After a few years of feeling a little nervous and slightly anxious every time the external supervisors had come to visit and question or sometimes just watch and take notes (which was worse!), she had begun her battle plan. Her first battle, she showed up in her widest hoodie and leggings, walking through the lab on socks (of course only when no further safety clothing - such as shoes - were required). The supervisors had frowned upon her but said nothing else. From then on, she had made it her goal to wear something "inappropriate" every time they showed up. With the exception being on days they needed something from them or when they were talking about evaluations. Why was that even still a thing? It had become abundantly clear that the government was interested in their work and ready to wait for their breakthrough - at least Rhiannon tried to convince herself of that. The alternative would be to get anxious every time the government's people showed up because it might be the day where they shut them down.

Anyways. She had shown up in various costumes before. Her favorite was still the duck costume that she wore and sadly had to undress out of before she could do any real work in the lab because it was just not meant for delicate work - or for holding a pen... But she did show up with it! A little late because she had told Lisa she'd needed to run an errand before. Another one of her favorites was when she wore nothing but a bikini and her lab coat. Granted, she felt a little uncovered but she was still proud of going through with it. The crazy scientist costume had been the favorite of the government people as far as she would be able to guess. They never really let on what they were thinking but she thought she had seen them crack a smile that one time. She was also certain that they were holding bets on her get-ups by now. Of course, she wouldn't know. But she liked to imagine so.

Today was not one of those battle days. Instead, she picked out a decent color for her outfit of the day, a simple blouse, heels, and a long but light coat. They had a breakthrough yesterday. It was a serious-clothes day. Once Rhiannon was dressed, she strapped a watch to her wrist and went to the bathroom to attend to her hair. She managed - with a big amount of bobby pins - to put her hair upwards in a way that was still loose enough to look chill but tight enough to not fall out when she walked. She just had to remember to not spin around quickly. That rapid movement might destroy her hairdo.

With the heels from her closet finally being worn the second time - the first time having been ages ago - they looked like they were newly bought. As she went down the stairs the heels accompanied her every step with a sound. "I'm ready to leave."
Hidden 17 hrs ago Post by rivaan
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"Well they do pay our bills so they are free to annoy us to the best of their capabilities... it's part of the contract or something." Lisa shrugged with a smile." Besides, how can they NOT when you amuse them to no end every time with different costumes?" She was amused at her wife's antics. that said, she was still miffed at that one time she walked around in a bikini in the lab with nothing but a labcoat on top. That was sight that Lisa much preferred to keep for herself, but had to share. She got her revenge though, next time she slipped laxatives in the coffees of all the dogs that drooled and leered after her wife's almost naked form. Then she blamed it on one of the janitors that were also monitoring them, cause no way in hell was she believing anybody tied to the lab was not in cahoots with the government and whatever agencies were involved. Call her paranoid, but she'd take paranoia and preparation before being caught unprepared anyday.

Smiling and returning hte kis for a moment, she watched after Rhiannon's distancing form as the woman left to get back to the bedroom to get changed. Once she was alone in the room, Lisa sighed and covered her face with her arms for a moment. How long could they continue this blissful life? Especially now that the project was once more advancing, it was a matter of time before their bosses decide that the two of them were no longer neccessary. Honestly Lisa's pessimism was grounded in reality and logical conclusions. There were many cases where promicing scientists were denied their success because the government made sure to privatise the research under one excuse or another. Especially since she pulled one of her phones from her pocket and stared at it for a while. At the messege on it... They were a lot closer than anybody imagined, likely even than Rhia thought. Lisa hadn't mentioned it to anybody and was one of the reasons to get shitfaced drunk last night. She deleted the messege from that phone, pulled the card, snapped it a few times, and flusehd it down the sink. Then snapped the phone in two and tossed the pieces out.

She was already dressed for going out, so she wasn't going to change. Her negative mood and expression evaporated the moment she heard steps approaching and by the time she turned around to face her wife a wide smile had replaced it, like nothing had ever happened." Of course! Let's go, if we manage to finish a good deal of work today, we can go out earlier." She replied and stood up, moving the dishes into the dishwasher and setting it to go. Afterwards she grabbed her coat, her purse and her keychain before heading out to the garage. Their car was already waiting and with a simple flick of a switch, came to life. Their house wasn't too far from the research complex and they were neighbors with quite a few of their colleagues, both from their pojects and other projects that worked around the massive research complex.

The drive as quite pleasant and calm, there wasn't much traffic on their roads and in the near distance you could see the monumental complex." Hey, Rhia, have you ever thought what we should do when we complete the project?" Lisa asked suddenly when they were about 10 minutes drive away from the labs. It's been their dream and passion since they were still colleage students and now she feared the point that they'd have to step away from it for one reason or another was fast approaching. Either as a result of completing it or as a result of them being booted out of it.
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Rhiannon enjoyed car rides on empty streets. Especially if she didn't have to drive. It allowed her to let her brain wander and wonder. She could dig into the depths of her fantasies and creativity and just relax, her eyes focused on nothing in particular as she took in the beautiful sight. Their occupation had given them quite a bit of money and so naturally, the neighbourhood they choose to reside in was a beautiful concept of art. To Rhiannon at least.

When Lisa pulled her out of her thoughts, Rhiannon took a minute to really understand her words. "Complete? ... What do you mean, complete?" Her head turned away from the window and to her partner. "There is no 'complete', is there? Once we get the portal running, we are gonna explore its possibilities and limits. We are gonna be able to see into the past. We'll be gathering information on all sorts of events, on everyday life. It'll solve many mysteries. For the first time in forever, we might be able to shed some light to the dark ages. We might actually figure out who Jack the Ripper was. All sorts of things. It might rewrite history books. Do you understand the possibilities? It would help us understand our history a great deal more. How can we pass up on a chance like that?" Her eyes drifted back to the road. The building was getting closer.

"I guess... if you're thinking that maybe we get bored of our project and would want something more challenging after a while... or in a sort of thought experiment 'oh what would we do if...' hmm.... I guess we could start on something new. But... Lis, we've been working on this since college days. I am not planning on giving it up anytime soon. Not when we're making progress. This is our baby. It belongs to us. And I plan on working on it for a great deal longer." Rhiannon thought about it for a moment. "I guess it would make sense that someone would like to work on a simpler version of our portal for real-time travel across greater distances. It could be used to explore space more easily, to send resources through, et cetera. There are just so many possibilities this invention would open for humanity."

In a sense, the portal was Rhiannon's way to still incorporate a sense of archelogy into her theoretical physics. It wouldn't just be able to show them humanity's history. She hoped it would show them what came before them. If they just worked on it long enough, there was the chance they got closer to getting a look at the universe as it was created. Albeit their project also focusing on time travel in a sense of sending something or someone through, Rhiannon would already be more than happy with it providing a look into the past. After all, meddling with the past was a dangerous game. She wasn't entirely sure if she wanted that to happen. But at the same time, her curiosity and her passion for their project pushed her to try and see if it was possible. She needed to try. She wanted to know.

"I guess in a different reality I'd be an archeologist", she finally added. "Or maybe a journalist if we went away from science altogether." She braced herself for the next question and looked at her wife, waiting for her reaction. "Why are you asking this?"
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Lisa stayed quiet for a moment, waiting for Rhiannon's speech to be over with. Once her wife got heated up and began her ranting, it usually took a while to stop if the topic was something she was passionate about. Best course of action was to be patient and calm. She understood her attitude and opinion though. It was after all similar to Lisa's own, but unlike Rhia who was a bit more of an idealist and dreamer, Lisa was always more of a realist. There were many issues with their creation and should it be completed there'd be even more. There was absolutely no way they were going to be allowed to freely use it to explore the past. If anybody was going to be using it, it would be select people from the government that were specifically selected and more likely than not attempt to alter select points in history to their ends. Granted htere was absolutely no guarantee that they'd be able to. After all, will altering the past, erase THIS future and replace it with another or would it make the two exist parallel to one another? There was still much that wasn't explored and understood. She did agree with the possibilities and benefits of transportation technology based on the project however. That would certainly benefit their civilization!

"I..." She began, hearing her love's question. Lisa's fingers tightly wrapped around the wheel, causing the leather on it to make sounds from the force." Don't think we will be allowed to continue much forward on the project after we bring it to proper working state." She finally let out quietly." We can dream all we want, Rhia, but fact is that they can and most likely will cut us off our creation once it's working. Tampering with the past is already too much an issue that might happen, if anybody is allowed to venture through or even use the machine, it would be carefully selected people that our 'superiors' have perfect trust in." She sighed, a bit tired honestly and not for being hungover still.

"That is the reason, I just want to know what we should do after that happens. I mean persuing stable portal technology that can be widely avaible for hte public is a nice next goal. It would make space exploration and colonization viable and the possibilities go further beyond that indeed. But tinkering with time? I don't see us being allowed to do so." She said quietly." I bet it would be part of the things to happen today, they will likely be bringing more 'interns' and staff. They are already having US train our replacements..."
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Train....replacements..? Rhiannon couldn't quite wrap her head around what her wife was saying. "No...", Rhiannon protested. "No. How..." She gasped at an inner thought and shook her head. "How can you just stand for that? That is our project. If they want to take it, we fight! That is our research and our hard work! Years! God damn it, years, Lisa!" She shook her head again.

"If you think I will sit back and let them take our invention and ... and ... degrade us to ... to work on something like a washed-off version of our work, a freaking travel portal, you must have forgotten who you're talking to."

Take their work... Rhiannon would not let that happen. And she would certainly not live a moment of her life creating something that is only a fraction of what they've done. She would not invent such a machine. No.

"What do you even mean, they're training people to replace us? We are not replaceable! No one does what we do. No one else knows what we know. They need us. They can train others to go through the portal, sure, yes. Granted. But they can't just toss us away. What if they want a second portal? What if something destabilizes the connecti0on? What if something breaks? Who are they gonna call? An intern?" She shook her head again. A strand of her hair loosened and fell out of its place. "Why are you coming to me with such conspiracy theories? Do you have evidence? Is there something you aren't telling me, Lisa?"

Now her body turned to face her wife. She wasn't one to lie to her. Rhiannon knew that. If Lisa thought something was up, then something was up. And just because her heart told her not to believe in it didn't mean it wasn't true. "I'm sorry. Tell me what is going on."
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"We are replaceable, Rhia. Especially after we make it work." Lisa replied tiredly." Sure we are the leading people in the project, but we aren't alone. All the additional staff we work with, all of them are experts in the field also. The theories, the idea and the execution, those are all us, but the people we work with, they know enough so they will be able to maintain the machine's state and maybe in teh future even improve some aspects without us around also. Also those interns? Yeah, all of those are young raising scientists with PHDs that are being groomed, just as how we were. You enver thought it was weird how the governement just suddenly popped up when we graduated and offered us a frankly too good to be true deal? Government will want sole control over the time machine and we do not facture into that control."

She sighed and tiredly drove off the side of the road, stopping there and walking outside, letting the cool air hit her face as she waited for Rhia to join her by the front of the car. She softly sat on the edge of the front of the car, looking at the science complex in the far distance." Look at it. What do you see? A place of learning? Place of advancement?" SHe asked and shook her head." I knew something was up from the moment they approached us all those years back, Rhia. I've been carefully monitoring everybody that got assigned to the project, checking their backgrounds, educations. Granted we needed people of such education to complete our work, but... I've noted an increase in activity from some of our colleagues. Have you noted how some of them are studying the project a lot more intently than others? Some of the fresh recruites, young people straight out of university... I've gotten polite requests from the Research Complex Management that I require a proper assist team and I should handle their training. That's the lil group that follows me around lately, they ask a lot of quests... very specific questions. They even askemed if you've got a preference when it comes to your 'interns' they plan to hire. Somethign about ensuring the next generation of minds or some nonsense like that. I checked some of the intern's graduation projects... they were on very familiar topics too..." She rubbed her temples.

"We've seen it happen, I mean history is filled with it, our quantum physics professor was kicked out of his project after making it work for crying out loud. Sure they gave him all credits back then and he was famous for it, but his research was made a state secret and he was under strict non disclosure agreements about it... the same type of agreements we signed back then, blinded by our enthusiasm." Lisa let out a dark chuckle." I've backed all the date up, you know... Every thing for the last decade, I've backed it all and if they knew, I'll likely end in prison. It was part of the agreement we signed, all research stays as secret with them unless the state approves it's full disclosure, we get credit of course, it might be publically mentioned in some capacity what we've acomplished. Fuck... it's the atom bomb all over again." She added and bit her lip.

"I MAY be paranoid, I'd love to just be paranoid about this and it will all be fine, but... I don't see it, Rhia. The small clues are all there, the very capable senior staff that's serving us our helpers while we lead the project, staff we didn't hire ourselves. Strick monitoring at the complex, frequent inspections, detailed research logs, shifty nature of our government when it comes to powerful and or useful inventions. Hell one of the newer members last week had an idea that I shot down, lil shit must have called somebody cause half an hour later I recieved a call from the government that I should use the guy's idea and check the results. That was the reason why we nearly blew half the lab by the way. Fact is, the more we advance and get near completetion, the more authority and control we are losing."
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Rhiannon stared at her wife as she talked and with one word after the next threw daggers at her happiness. Piercing the mental bubble she had build around their lives. She listened silently with a sad expression creeping onto her face. She couldn't have done anything else. What was she supposed to say to all this?

As her wife finished her long monologue of destruction, Rhiannon turned away. She took a few steps, turned around, and took a few more. She began pacing for a moment. Maybe multiple minutes as her mind tried to wrap around the decay of her worldview. This felt like a wrong reality. Like a warped version of her life.

She finally turned back to her wife and looked straight at her. "I believe you." She nodded, more to convince herself than Lisa. The scientist stepped closer to the dark-haired woman in front of her. "I don't want to. But I will." She positioned herself next to Lisa, leaning against the car's front. "I don't really know what to say to this. But maybe I'll start with: What the heck, Lisa?! You come at me with all of this in the car?! And so close to the facility! Why haven't you told me this yesterday? Why haven't you told me this morning? You know what? What the heck! Why didn't you tell me a month ago? Or, I don't know, ten years ago." Rhiannon's expression began to change from sadness to something more. There was a deeper feeling underlying the anger that she felt on top of it. A painful pull in her heart. "I thought we were a team. And don't you dare bullshit me about 'protecting me'. You could have told me in college. You could have talked to me before we signed! After we signed. Any day, any year as we were working on the project. You could have told me when you decided to copy our work. Which, by the way, is a criminal offense according to our contracts! That you also haven't told me! You have been endangering yourself, me, our jobs, our project and you didn't think to tell me?" She pushed herself off the car and began to pace again. The feelings tumbling inside her were too hectic to keep standing still. Her mind was racing, trying to process all that was happening. Trying to put her reality together with the reality her wife seemed to have experienced. "I can't believe you've been operating behind my back. I never thought.... I never thought you had secrets from me."

As the anger lifted, the deep sorrow reappeared, visibly dancing across her expression and taking its bow. "That wasn't fair of you. This is not something you do alone. Not something you do behind your wife's back. And you don't spring such news onto me right before work, at the side of the road, ten minutes from entering that building." Her hand gestured vaguely towards the facility. "You could have picked a better time and place for this." The woman let out a big sigh and rubbed her fingers over her forehead. That headache was coming back again.

"That isn't to say I don't believe you. I am not happy but I do have a functioning mind, mind you." Rhiannon looked at her wife's expression. The woman who loved her most hadn't been honest with her. For over a decade. "What do you now propose we do? Wait for them to take all of our work? Then leave silently and - what? - live the rest of our lives selling marmalades?" She shook her head and put those fingers back to her forehead. "I'm sorry. I don't mean to snap. This is a lot. And frankly, we don't have the time to discuss this. We're being late. I guess it's better than telling me after we get fired."

Rhiannon pulled her hands over her face, dragged them down her eyes and lips and chin. "So why are you telling me now? What has changed? Are you proposing a plan of action?"
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"There's no excuse for me to give... by the time I realized it, it's already been years into the project." She replied ,running a hand through her raven hair." I hoped it would stop, if they thought that the project wouldn't succeed, eventually they would have just left it alone, drop the funding and allow us to move on, pursue it on our own, a fool's goal and all that. We could have made it work by our own two hands, without the oversight, but... yeah... they aren't dropping it and because of a foolish decision made straight out of highschool, we are in this situation and in a way it's my fault. Given my family's history, I should have noted the possibilities for backstabbing in those documents we signed back then. It's nothing illeagal, but I was so... blinded by the possibilities so notice them. I tried, you know. I tried to find a loophole from the contracts, something to allow us to leave with the research in our own hands, but there wasn't one. WEnt through every page of that mountain of papers that we signed back then, combed through all the fine print and there was nothing."

"What changed...?" She mumbled, biting her lower lip, it was a very specific subconcious habit of Lisa's when she was nervous. Something that Rhiannon would know after over a decade as a couple." The device worked... for a brief moment during our last test before the drive burnt out and the whole thing suffered a catastrophic collapse. I had set a pair of burner phones the moment the experiment was on and the device operational, I sent a mesege from one of the phones to the other that was turned off and in my room. This morning while you were getting dressed I checked it. There's the messege that I send... that was recieved twice. One two days prior the experiment date."

"We've succeeded even if it was only for a fraction of a second, enough to send a SMS through. You are right, we can bring the machine to work within acceptable parameters likely even today. I... panicked... my plan to wait this out and just get us dropped and freed means nothing now. I... have no idea what to do anymore." She was nearly to tears." 5 years, I hoped for five years that they will free us, I made sure to point out to them every bad turn out at every experiment, just trying to get them to stop caring, to convince them the oposite of what we know. To convince them that this was impossible and they shouldn't care to have the research under state secrets, but for some reason they only cared for the possibility... I'm sorry..."

"I don't know... I... maybe... just..." She had tears in her eyes now.
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Rhiannon felt dumb. If anything of her feelings wasn't just a mix of anger, betrayal, sorrow, and pain, it was the feeling of being a fool. But she knew she didn't have to. No one would think her a fool. Least of all her own wife. Yet, she couldn't suppress the rising notion that for someone this brilliant she had been incredibly stupid.

"You went through our contract...", she whispered in disbelief as Lisa carried on with her words. Words that didn't make sense to Rhiannon. Her wife sounded nothing like her wife. All of this felt so foreign. Had she been dating someone who was overly paranoid for over a decade and not known? Had she not known Lisa?

But then the woman bit her lower lip like she always did when she was nervous and Rhiannon's heart dropped. Of course she knew her wife. And she knew her wife was desperate and scared. Rhiannon stepped closer to her with her hand reaching out to squeeze Lisa's arm. No matter what this was, they would work through it.

Her eyes widened as Lisa confessed about the phones. Excitement ran through her body before the betrayal of being left out could catch up. "It worked? It works?!" But more than these two words were not meant to be. Lisa continued to confess her sins while Rhiannon's emotions sank deeper and deeper. Not only had the device worked... but she had not been a part of that discovery. She had not even been involved. She hadn't known. This was a trust so deeply broken Rhiannon couldn't handle thinking down that path right this minute.

A line of thought went through her brain heavily. As if it was clawing at the sides of a tunnel it didn't want to go down. Running deep scars into the sides with every step it took forward. "5 years ... hoped they would free us". What was going on? "[...] convince them of the opposite of what we know". "W-Wait", Rhiannon stuttered. Her voice was small now, cracking. This conversation was draining her energy fast and burning through all kinds of emotions even faster. "You -" The words couldn't form on her tongue. They stuck to her throat. Bitter and thick. Like slime. "You sab-... You sabotaged our project?" Hot, acid tears were welling up Rhiannon's eyes as the idea of the thought burnt into her mind. "You sabotaged -" Me, she wanted to say but couldn't bring the word across her lips. This simple little word. It broke something within her. A lump stuck in her throat.

Omelets and kisses. She wished herself back to them. But no. Rhiannon never wished for less information. As much as it hurt, shutting your eyes from what was uncomfortable wasn't the way. She shook her head slowly, looking down as she attempted to keep her rising emotions at bay. The side of the street was not the place to have this conversation. But by god, she couldn't keep a straight posture for much longer.

Her wife, her partner in crime, the person she trusted most in the world had betrayed her, excluded her, endangered them both, and kept secrets. For a decade. She went through our contracts like some secret agent.
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