The land is unusually quiet, especially for the perfect storm that is Haven, Maine. The woods that so many have found trauma in, particularly one Haven PD Detective with keen senses. This creepy silence is broken suddenly by the snapping of twigs and the huffs and puffs of a girl, sobbing as she runs through the woods.
"Yeah, that's kind of how people are in this town. I'm Audrey, and what's going on is that Hailie, who just ran off again, got attacked and had a panic attack, said panic attack caused you to..." She thinks of a plausible lie, floundering for a moment before giving up. "Drop through a portal in the sky, which she created. So far, her portals only transport between dimensions and realities, not on our world, so there's a chance you're a little bit... Stuck here."
"Uh. Get her back? Tell her to open it back up?"
"Not really an option... That's the first we've actually seen of her having that part of the Trouble, we only know the basics from when her mother had it before her. And until we find the ring that her mother used to control it, she could actually send you to a hell dimension, or someplace where people can't survive. That, and she hates cops. It's a thing for career criminals, they're not fond of law enforcement as a general rule."
Audrey starts walking the direction Nathan left in, wandering slowly through the brush to continue her conversation with the girl.
....well, she guesses she's following. "That bodes well. Does this happen a lot?"
"People dropping out of portals? No. But Nathan wasn't kidding, weird is kinda normal here. We're not quite sure why, all we know is, once every nearly 30 years, things called the Troubles crop up all over Haven. People with abilities they can't control, most dangerous. It's a volatile situation, and a lot of the time, people don't know what they're doing. So I spend most of my time giving emergency counselling to a town full of people with triggers aplenty, and deadly results if you step a toe out of line. Seriously, there was a guy whose shadow detached itself Peter Pan style to kill people who made him angry, but he had no control over it. There was the kid whose every dream became reality while he slept. What you caught the tail end of back there was a Skinwalker. They probably had all their skin slide off one day after something traumatic happened to trigger the curse and then they started taking others skin to wear, maybe out of instinct, but the moral line gets blurry. These people are... Cursed. And they suffer every day," Audrey recognises her morose rambling for what it is, finally, and changes the subject. "Anyways, you didn't give us your name, and unfortunately I can't just call you sweetie and hun until we figure out how to send you home."
"My name is Selena. This is very much not my home. Not even close."
"Well Selena, nice to meet you, and trust me, it's not even my home, I get how weird this all is."
They finally break the tree line, finding Nathan leaning against his Bronco, obviously annoyed at waiting for them for so long, judging by the look on his face.
"Dwight'll be here to clean up in half an hour. We better get you back to the station, file some paperwork, see what we can do about keeping you comfortable till we figure out how to get you home."
"You have paperwork for this?"
He sort of half smirks, something deadened and yet still lively and humorous playing at his lips. "Not in the slightest. But we have paperwork for amnesiacs that wash up on our shores, it's... kind of the same thing."
He opens the door to the back seat for her, gesturing with a sarcastic gentlemanly air about him for her to enter.
Selena jumps in, purposefully ignoring the sarcastic part of it.
"I guess I was due for a vacation. That would have involved a lot of paperwork too."
He closes the door behind her a little too hard, an unfortunate part of not being able to feel is a certain lack of muscle control and fine motor function, harder to do this when you can't feel what it's doing. He gets in to the drivers seat silently, now stoic and terse.
"Ugh, I hate paperwork, seriously, I used to make him do it, but now he's the chief, so I actually have to do my own paperwork."
"How dare I make you do your job Parker."
"Now, you are seeing it my way," she gestures jokingly with a red vine she appears to have pulled out of nowhere, but really was just the car door, she keeps emergency candy for when Nathan gets too cranky for her to handle without sugar.
"You said that you have no idea how this started? The curses."
"Ah, she told you about the Troubles? Everyone thinks they're urban legends, scary stories to tell your kids, and then they actually encounter one, and they act completely amazed, regardless of the fact that we have way too many mysterious deaths. But, that's the wonder of humans, always determined to be ignorant to the last."
"Guess humans are the same in every dimension."
Audrey pricks up at that, her hinkey radar pinging at the comment. "There's something for humans to be ignorant of in your dimension?"
"My grandmother is Immortal. In the classic sense. Most people don't know about it."
"What, like vampires?"
Audrey is surprised and a little weirded out. And more to the point, she tries to imagine a vampire like the ones from Unstake My Heart, which she reminds herself to get a new copy of to finish reading finally.
"Not really. Apart from the longevity, vampires of myth and Immortals don't really have a lot in common. Immortals don't need blood to survive, for one."
She looks down, a little embarrassed by her obvious lack of knowledge.
"Right, sorry, just, we're kind of flying by the seat of our pants. And it's not like foster care came with 'Intro to Ancient Mythology' to help you survive in the world, more stuff like 'How to whittle your own shiv to defend against a gross foster parent'."
It's suddenly obvious Parker is an extreme over-sharer.
Selena can relate. "Not everyone can have an overbearing Immortal grandmother that hires you ten tutors and fills up all of your free time. Probably you have more actionable life skills than most people. That's definitely more helpful in the real world. Plus you know how to make a shiv."
"Except now I'm a cop, I come with a gun equipped," Audrey quips wittily, in the back of her head she can hear Nathan's criticism of her lack of friends and hopes to make a new one through her... charms.