Kate pushed into the stairwell, the door nearly coming off its hinges. “Wow. Disrepair, much?” She skipped down the steps, even this being obviously too slow for Anissa’s tastes. “Ana could have dropped us off in a better part of town.”
“Anastacia prides herself on her efficiency,” Anissa said. “If zere were any choice in ze matter at all, she had us arrive at the most opportune place—“ She opened the door to the ground floor, into a circle of pale, hunched people with blood red eyes and two-inch cuspids.
Kate squeaked, and tried to pull the door shut, but one of the bloodless individuals grabbed it and ripped it neatly off the hinges.
“You’re right,” Anissa said, kicking to the side, and snapping the vampire’s neck back. “Ze disrepair of zis place is terrible.”
“Holy crap,” Mi-Jin said, for the fifth time, as they walked through the streets, completely unfazed by Anastacia’s scolding. It was two AM, probably, Kate figured, assuming the time difference from Indianapolis to Paris was the same if you crossed universes. “This is amazing!” Mi-Jin spun around, looking at everything: the tall buildings that swept upward like modern skyscrapers while holding on to pre-Renaissance architectural trappings. The hovering discs that served as cars zooming about overhead. The people staring at them like they were circus freaks. The lights that made night seem more like day than even the brightest city in their world.
“Contessa Duvall,” a passerby said, stopping briefly to curtsey. “Bonjour.”
“Bonjour, Mademoiselle. Bon soir!” Another pedestrian offered a longer exchange that left both him and Anissa laughing.
“It’s our clothes, isn’t it?” Kate said. “They think we’re weirdos.”
“Yes, but I told him you were from ze Colonies.”
“Are… Is this normal dress for the Colonies, then?” She looked at her Fozzie-Bear-as-the-First-Doctor t-shirt and doubted it.
“Oh, no. But people are willing to believe a lot if you blame it on ze Colonies.”
New Frontiers (episode 2)
“Anyway, I started this one last night.” The unfinished picture portrayed a young woman in somewhat formal clothing, with a look about them that suggested the Renaissance, and somehow modern royalty at the same time. A high, wide collar framing her long flowing hair, with flowing sleeves down her slender arms, anachronistically adorned with a large wristband with a keyboard and monitor attached. The features were remarkably similar to those on the previous picture.
“Oh!” Justin said. “That’s the Crimson Lotus’s secret identity!”
“It’s her twin sister, actually,” Kate said.
“Neat,” Trish said. “So, you don’t need to reference the first picture to draw the twin.”
Kate shrugged. “I guess not. I… just know what she’s supposed to look like.”
“Thanks,” Kate glanced at the drawing, then sketched in the folds of the dress. “The Crimson Lotus… Anissa Duvall… guided herself to physical perfection, while Anastacia,” she scribbled in a small ring on Anastacia’s finger, “trained toward mental development. She’s very intelligent, somewhat clairvoyant, and she knows I’m drawing her…” Kate looked up, bit her lip. “That was weird. I don’t know why I said that.”
Worlds of Kate Hunter (episode 1)
The CANDID Files (Kate Hunter prequel)