Mary is in her room, reading the Bible. The Bible is super interesting. The Bible is so much more interesting than the pervasive wrong feeling in her head. Her assignment for her sub's Bible study group this week is practicing gratitude, and she's currently endeavoring to do so without lying to herself. She is grateful that she can get away with being alone when she reads the Bible. She is grateful that the Scripture is distracting. She is grateful that she might be able to get away with sneaking out to the library in a few days and reading something she hasn't read like twenty million fucking times okay this is against the spirit of the exercise. The fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control...
- a girl, clothes look dom or foreign or both, hair looks subby and bubblegum pink, spontaneously appears and nearly drops the baby she's holding.
Well she's a girl so probably she's a sub or else she needs to find Jesus and then she'll be a sub.
Mary stands up, startled, and moves towards the girl as if to help steady her, then stops because she's not sure if that's what you're supposed to do in this situation, then says, "Do you, um, need help? Also how did you get here."
...the girl says something in a foreign language and pets her baby soothingly.
Okay. Um. Mage from another country? Person who happened to be standing next to a mage from another country? Aaaa what is she supposed to do here.
"I'm Mary," she says, pointing at herself. "This is America." She sort of...awkwardly gestures around the room.
"...Peka," she points at herself, "Katin." The baby.
"Hi, Peka," she says. "Do you need to...call someone?" She doesn't have a cell phone but there's a landline in the bedroom. She picks up the phone and offers it to Peka.
Peka blinks at it. She pulls a similar device out of her pocket and pokes it a bit and displays it to Mary. There are weird probably-letter symbols on it.
Well that's new. Is that just what phones look like in Europe? She doesn't have another explanation ready. What would someone who'd randomly been teleported here from another country need, a place to stay? Someone to help with travel plans? Well, Mary isn't in charge of any of that, is she.
He probably wouldn't do anything untoward. Not to a sub with a baby.
"I don't know how to help you, we should probably talk to my dom," she says, aware that she's mostly talking to herself. She steps out the door, then gestures for Peka to follow her.
Peka and baby follow.
John's in the kitchen.
"Sir," she says. "This sub appeared in my room out of nowhere, and she doesn't speak English. Her name's Peka."
"Appeared," he says. "As in teleported?"
"Yes, sir," she says, more quietly. He moves towards her. She freezes. He kisses her on the forehead. She holds perfectly still.
Then he turns to Peka, smiling. He has a very nice smile.
"John Nesbitt," he says, pointing at himself. He extends a hand.
- Peka says something in a foreign language and takes a step back.
He withdraws his hand graciously.
"We'll do everything in our power to help you get back home, Peka," he says reassuringly. (He figures the reassuring tone is helpful even though she can't understand what he's saying). "Now, let's figure out where you're from."
He opens his laptop and pulls up a map of the world.
...she rummages around on her phonelike device and finds a map. It's a city map, not a world map, with a neighborhood color-coded in red and everything marked in an unrecognizable alphabet.
She doesn't seem to have a country map on hand. She just stares at his world map and shakes her head. Points at her city: "Tapa itak te Tapa pona."
That is not a look of recognition wrt Earth. "...Amenta."
"We should tell Pastor Dan."
...she mimes bottle-feeding the baby.
"Well, we don't have any baby things in the house." This is very pointedly addressed to Mary.
Mary is given a strict time limit and instructions not to speak to anyone other than the cashier and some money and a kiss on the forehead, and is told to pick up some formula and diapers and other assorted baby materials.
And in the meantime John can help Peka get acclimated to the language! He starts by teaching her the names of various items in the kitchen--"table," "chair," etc.
Peka tries. She takes some notes on her phone. Eventually she displays what might be a battery indicator - a pie chart with the white share now slightly less than half.
John beams at her whenever she gets something right.
When he sees the battery, he winces. "I can't help you there." He holds up his phone next to hers and shows her that the charger ports look different.
He can get her a pencil and paper if she wants to continue to take notes without running down her battery!
...it's kind of hard to take notes one-handed with pencil and paper while holding a baby, which she does not want to put down. She isn't sitting, either, or touching anything.