Hey all, been a bit busy so sorry for the delay before I finally got this post up!
Introducing a new character into #TheDefenders verse in this snippet. So, I hope you all enjoy. If you’d like to read a full chapter or maybe more from the defenders please send any inquiries to me on Twitter or hit my email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The first thing Nyssa heard when she came to was, “Well, this is new! Usually I’m the comatose one…” Her eyes shot open. She found herself staring at the gaunt, pale face of Jameson Smith. This was not a comforting sight, a fact that Jameson was aware of through years of experience. Thus he didn’t blame her for narrowing her eyes in suspicion. “Who are you?” she aksed commandingly. “And where am I?”
Jameson gave a polite cough. “I’m Jameson Smith. You are in my house.” He smiled in what he hoped was a charmingly disarming manner. “We’ve—met earlier.”
Nyssa’s eyebrow shot up slightly. Her eyes remained very narrow. “I think I vaguely remember that. Are you the one who felt me up?”
“Oh, for the last time, you weren’t felt up!” snapped Jameson.
This answer was in many respects unfortunate, as it caused Nyssa’s eyebrows to arch higher. “What do you mean, ‘for the last time’?”
Jameson’s eyes widened in stark terror. “Something that has nothing to do with the subject at hand?” he suggested hopefully.
Jameson was something of an expert in withering glances, due to a combination of natural disposition, and extensive training. He was quite capable of making a brave man whimper, then wet himself with one screw faced glance. And with such expertise, he could say that Nyssa’s gaze was the visual equivalent of thumbscrews, being fully capable of making an utter sociopath break down and confess to years old crimes.
Jameson gulped, and managed a soft laugh. “I really think we should leave vague uncertain happenings in the vague uncertain past, where they will continue to be vague, uncertain, and never spoken of again. Ever!” He smiled broadly, then glanced nervously away.
Nyssa took a deep breath. “Listen, I can sympathize with your—difficulties, but realize this is not a situation that engenders trust.”
“Oh, come on!” said Jameson, annoyed. “Do I look like the kind of man who preys on helpless young women he finds on the street?” He winced, “Don’t answer that.”
Nyssa screwed up her mouth. “Actually the fact you asked had me looking for a blunt object.”
“You’ve given that up?” asked Jameson with a note of hope.
“You don’t look that formidable,” replied Nyssa. “I think I can take you.”
Jameson blinked. “How courteous of you to tell me that.”
“Please step back. I don’t want to have to hurt you.”
Jameson looked at her. She had an odd way of speaking, actually—a slight accent, which was to be expected, though Jameson couldn’t for the life of him place it, and a very formal tendency in her diction that was very—offputting.
He had no idea why he’d thought she was so amazingly attractive. It had clearly been a momentary lapse of reason.
Especially comparing her to Ashley.
Not that he had done that.
He had no idea why he suddenly felt so guilty.
Nyssa stared at him. “Are you always so fidgety?”
Jameson fidgeted awkwardly. “What are you talking about?”
“That would be a yes,” murmured Nyssa.
Jameson blinked, then glared at her. “You know, I face a lot of trouble, and a lot of annoyance, so you’d think I’d be used to it, but in fact all that happens is I get more and more irritated,” stated Jameson, gesturing emphatically. “And now you come along, ask me for help, and then start picking me apart like a freaking game of Jenga, and it’s all I can do to not lose my temper—”
“What was that?” asked Nyssa, startled. “Before the part about you losing your temper?”
“Jenga,” said Jameson. “It’s a game where you stack these blocks, and you start picking them out of the stack, and putting them on top of it—”
“No, before that. I asked you for help?”
“Yes, and I felt pity, and gave it to you, an action for which the universe has seen fit to mock me once again,” said Jameson.
Nyssa stared at him for a moment, then glanced away. “I see. My apologies, My remarks were—unfair.”
“Also catty, sarcastic, and cruel,” noted Jameson. “But thanks for the apology.”
Nyssa placed her hands on her hips. “I’m starting to regret it.” As Jameson opened his mouth, she gestured that she wasn’t finished. “But please—I have been on the run for some time now and it has damaged my courtesy. Also, you’re appearance doesn’t exactly inspire trust.”
“Oh, thank you,” muttered Jameson. “People are just bowling me over with compliments today…”
Nyssa took a deep flustered breath. “Look, let’s just this out on different footing.”
“Sounds reasonable.” Jameson shut his eyes. “So, Nyssa—”
“How do you know my name?” she snapped.
“You told me earlier,” he stated calmly. “Now, where do you come from?”
“I’d rather not say,” Nyssa answered curtly.
“What’s your full name?”
“That’s really not important.”
“Is there someone I should contact?”
“I really don’t know.”
Jameson frowned severely. “Well aren’t you a kettlepot of useful information? I already feel my hostility dissolving in the face of your open nature and exceptional trust.”
Nyssa shut her eyes. “I couldn’t tell you even if I wanted to,” she said quietly. “The truth is, I don’t remember.”
Jameson blinked. “Amnesia?”
Nyssa stared at him. “You seem skeptical.”
“It’s greatly overrated,” noted Jameson, “People forget things for awhile, but rarely the vast tracks that tradition grants to amnesiacs.” Jameson thought that over. “Except the senile, and they lose most of their faculties. It’s not a pretty sight.” He glanced back at her. “So, what do you remember?”
Nyssa thought that over. “I know my first name but not my last. I know a great deal about your culture, but I don’t know how I learned it, and I don’t recall my own. I know your language, and though it sounds idiotic, I know it isn’t my language, but I don’t know how I know that, and I don’t know mine.” She blinked.
“The only thing I can recall about my family is that I had an uncle who died before I was born…” She glanced at Jameson. “Does the name ‘Namor’ ring a bell?”
“It doesn’t even register as a name,” said Jameson, “though since the sixties, anything is possible.”
“Jameson! We’re back!” came Karen’s voice.
Nyssa glanced at Jameson. “Who—?”
Jameson sighed. “My associates. You can trust them.” He shook his head. “Though if you’re going to jump at everything, I can just check you into a nearby asylum…”
Nyssa shut her eyes. “I was being chased by people!”
Jameson nodded. “You mentioned that when I picked you up.” He glanced at her. “Any idea who they are? Or has that also been conveniently blanked from your mind?”
“They haven’t introduced themselves,” stated Nyssa flatly.
Jameson seemed to be about to reply to that when Karen burst in holding a platter. “Ta da!” She placed the platter in front of Nyssa. “Your dinner is served!” She yamked off the cover.
“Well, that certainly took you long enough,” groused Jameson. “Hey, wait is that—”
Karen beamingly displayed the meal. “Your very own sushi platter!”
“You blew the money I gave you on sushi?!!” screamed Jameson.
Karen recoiled nervously. “You said to get food…”
“I was thinking ramen! Soba! Something cheap, and noodlebased! Not a very expensive sushi platter!” He looked the platter over. “You even got fatty salmon…”
“Jameson?” asked Karen quietly.
“That was my food money for the next two weeks…” muttered Jameson. “If I want to eat, I’m going to have to dip into my personal savings, which are not in the best shape right now.”
“Um, we’ll help…” offered Karen.
Jameson stared at her in disbelief. “No you won’t. You guys don’t have any money. That’s why you leech off me.”
“I can’t eat this,” announced Nyssa.
“What?” said Jameson suddenly.
Nyssa glanced at him awkwardly, then glanced down at the platter. “I can’t eat this. I’m a vegetarian.”
Jameson blinked. “Even for fish?”
Nyssa’s jaw clenched. “Especially for fish.” She looked Jameson. “I’m a pacifist, Mr. Smith, who holds all life sacred.”
“Oh, come on!” yelled Jameson. “They’re just fish! They don’t feel pain! I know—I’ve been fishing! I hooked the same fish five times! And had to keep throwing it back!”
Nyssa scowled “They do too feel pain! They just lack longterm memory! Can you imagine what that’s like? To be in horrific pain, and have no idea why?”
“Very easily,” muttered Jameson. He rubbed his temples. “Look, you claim that you can’t remember where you come from and what happened to you, but you do recall you’re a pacifistic vegetarian who’s inordinately fond of FISH!”
The pair glared at each other for awhile. Finally, Nyssa turned away. “I’m going to take bath. I need one. And I’m not going to eat that fish. That is the end of our discussion.” She walked out of the room.
Jameson watched her leave, then sat down and helped himself to the platter.
Karen blinked. “Jameson?!”
“She doesn’t want it, I paid for it—I will eat it then.” He scowled. “I am going to get some enjoyment out of this, because frankly, I’ve had enough trouble.”
Karen nodded slowly. “Oh.” She coughed. “Can I have some?”