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 Is there redemption after failure, tag Zelena/Jessica
Charlie Bradbury
 Posted: Jun 27 2017, 06:59 AM
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Supernatural

Mysterious Islands

Bach is online


31 years old / 59 posts




Failure, that was the best way to sum up what had taken place over the last couple of days, total and utter failure. Charlie had gone into it all with such confidence, it seemed, well in all fairness the task that she had been given wasn't an easy one, but just the same she had gone into it convinced it would be no problem at all. Compared to some of the things she had faced in her own realm, it had seemed positively, nearly trivial. Charlie had been convinced the most difficult part of the whole task was going to be getting there, since the location was on the complete other side of Oz. Zelena hadn't downplayed the dangers, upon reaching the outskirts of the area it was clear that there was some dark magic at play in this area. Some curse perhaps causing the area to be dark, and most Oz residents steered very clear from this area.

The object she needed to obtain was supposedly in the centre, of whatever exactly 'this' was. She did so try to do what she'd been asked to do, but the closer she got to the centre, the worse things became. Were they illusions, delusions, phantoms, some part of her subconscious come to life, were they real. She didn't know the answer to any of these questions, but obstacle after obstacle seemed to be going through her mind, her life, her past, and plucking out every fear it could find. Some she'd even forgotten she'd ever feared, others were far more potent.

It wasn't so much as if the fears were attacking her, it was hard to explain really, so hard to understand what was really happening. She kept trying, but when she came to the images of Sam and Dean dead, dead because she had failed to get back with the necessary magic to save Dean, she could go no further, she simply wasn't brave enough to look past that one. Defeated she was afraid to even approach Zelena, so far the woman had given Charlie no reason to fear her, but Zelena also didn't seem the type to be let down. Either way, best to get it over with, maybe she'd have another chance to try, maybe not, but she couldn't put off seeing Zelena and telling her of the failure. Charlie stepped into the room she expected to find Zelena in, the large throne room, and cleared her throat nervously.

tag Zelena // notes: Coming back having failed her task

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Zelena
 Posted: Jul 3 2017, 01:36 AM
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Wizard of Oz

Oz

Jessica is online


38 years old / 200 posts




this isn't a curse
this is a second chance
Her quill scratched the parchment, carving every letter into the page.

It had been a few weeks since Charlie had come into her employ, and Zelena was making full use of her new minion. Every opportunity that Charlie could be sent out she was, with jobs both big and small - jobs that the winged monkeys simply couldn't handle, ones that required a speaker of English and someone who didn't have green skin. The ink of her quill ran freely for a moment, only to be confined to the spidery lettering of her handwriting. It was only now that Zelena was realising quite how little of Oz she had been able to reach. She was leading a terrifying reign over the West, and over most of Oz, but to get what she wanted a subtler approach was sometimes needed. Hence Charlie, and her continuing usefulness that, unwittingly, was keeping her alive.

But she was careful. Her little friend had no idea she was being sent on some journeys to people who were unaware she was working for the Wicked Witch - and nor did she know the details about what Zelena planned. And she didn't have to. She was being quite useful all by herself, pulled along by the offer of helping her precious friend - what was his name? Keane? Zelena shook her head absently to herself as she wrote, only to lean over to an open book to scrutinise the page for further information. Whoever he was, she was sure to reference him every so often, to galvanise Charlie's motivation, ensure she knew Zelena hadn't forgotten about the nature of their relationship. And in return she gave Charlie quarters in the massive castle, most of which she didn't even use, kept the winged monkeys out of her sight and kept a roof over her head. It was the nearest thing Zelena had to a friendship with another woman, or anyone at all, in a using, manipulating sort of way. She was even playing nice with the poor girl.

Well, somewhat. When she heard there was a kind of dark magic surrounding a region far across Oz, Zelena sent Charlie off immediately. The perfect trophy of bravery, of courage, was located there - and it required something with a bit more brainpower than a monkey. So off she’d gone, and for a few days Zelena had heard nothing. For her part the witch honestly hadn't noticed, for most of the time, that she was no longer present by her side. She was still working on the time travel spell. It was imperative that it was airtight with no chances of it rebounding - or, even worse, messing with any time streams. No one had ever tried this before; there were no books, no literature. She was working it out herself, scribbling furiously on scrolls, on long off-white expanses of parchment, on any scraps of paper with mathematical signs and alchemical symbols for elements. It had to go right first time.

She was doing this now when the doors opened and she heard a cough clatter over the silence of the hall. Zelena looked up at the wide, arching emerald ceilings, the gold inlay on the walls - and the woman at the very end of the hall. "Charlie!" She stood up, abandoning the spell. Her quill dropped to the parchment and smudged the last word. "Have you got it?" Her eyes flickered over Charlie, expecting her to brandish it aloft.

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Charlie Bradbury
 Posted: Aug 6 2017, 07:12 AM
Quote


Supernatural

Mysterious Islands

Bach is online


31 years old / 59 posts




Charlie suddenly felt like she was walking around in one of her nightmares she used to have when she was a kid in school, like the ones where you dream you're in class and look down and realise you're standing there naked and exposed and everyone is laughing at you. The difference being that she was in a magical realm, and she was facing not just any queen, but a powerful witch who was rumoured to have a powerful temper. So far Charlie had not really seen much of that rumoured temper, at least not in any way shape or form directed at Charlie. She'd been pretty good about staying on Zelena's good side, but it was a side Charlie was eager to remain on. Granted she had no idea yet the depths of how scary Zelena could actually be, since so far she had done such a good job at staying on Zelena's good side, she was blissfully oblivious to evil Zelena was. For now Charlie just saw a just, if not at times rather uptight, queen who just wanted the best for her people.

She was suddenly aware of every little movement she was making, Charlie felt like Zelena could see right through her, like she could already smell the failure oozing off Charlie, even if she didn't really act like she already knew the results of Charlie's little mission. Why couldn't she have just shouldered on, pushed through, been brave enough, strong enough. She didn't want to fail Zelena, not only for reasons of her own for needing help for her friends back in her own realm, but because she genuinely wanted to be helpful to Zelena, someone she considered a friend, perhaps even someone she'd like to consider a mentor.

"Uh, right, about that......" Charlie paused and took a deep breath to steady her nerves, and moved a few more steps closer to Zelena. "So I mean, I'm totally willing to go out and try again, but I just wasn't quite as prepared, maybe, er well you see things got a bit overwhelming. I was so close though, at least I think I was close, I mean I think, can't really say for sure since I don't really know how much further to the centre where the thing is you need. I'd gone through a few obstacles already though, based on films I've seen the hardest obstacles are usually the ones closest to the goal........" Charlie hated having to admit that ultimately she'd been too scared, too emotionally defeated at seeing her friends dead bodies around her, dead because she had failed them, failed to bring back the magic needed from Oz to save Dean.

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Zelena
 Posted: Aug 14 2017, 09:16 AM
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Wizard of Oz

Oz

Jessica is online


38 years old / 200 posts




this isn't a curse
this is a second chance
Zelena didn't even notice she'd dropped anything. She looked to Charlie eagerly, a smile beginning to broaden across her face. She'd done it. She'd gone and got the symbol of courage! Or what would become the symbol, now that Charlie had been brave in order to wrestle it from the wrath of the dark magic. But that didn't matter; that would come in time, when the spell was ready and all the ingredients were in place. The fact she'd managed to bring it back was an achievement in itself. Zelena couldn't have looked to her - friend? Servant? - with more approval. Charlie had surpassed the flying monkey hordes and her guards. She was moderately clever, adventurous, good at following orders...even friendly. Friendly! As if anyone else dared! Zelena's smile had a glimmer of something unguarded about it, of genuine good spirits. She'd find some way of rewarding Charlie, the witch vowed. Maybe not healing her friend just yet (far too premature, she thought to herself - Charlie still had considerable utility) but something for her efforts.

One down, she thought to herself. Three to go.

But something was wrong. Zelena's smile faltered. Charlie wasn't brandishing anything aloft, wasn't looking happy - or as happy as she was. The woman making her way towards her looked self conscious more than anything. The witch looked her up and down, expecting her to have some sort of bag with her carrying the artefact in, or a hand behind her back, or anything to show that she had taken something away with her. Nothing. She wasn't carrying...anything. "Charlie?" Her voice echoed out uneasily around the chamber. She stepped out of the little area behind the curtain that worked as her quarters, abandoning the desk and her notes. She stepped onto the dais, searching the other woman's face. But she knew before she was told. Something had gone wrong. Not everything was how it should be.

She was silent as Charlie spoke - or rambled. It was all phrased nicely, buffered with excuses and cushioning for the blow, but a blow it was. Zelena just stood there, her face getting uglier by the second. It was almost painful, seeing the woman in front of her drag herself from pillar to post in a bid to turn the bad news around. It was just getting worse and worse, full of trite little phrases and apologies clothing the ugly truth. Slowly but surely anger was beginning to pool in the depths of her stomach. Overwhelming? So close? Obstacles? She'd set Charlie off to achieve a task! It wasn't going to be easy - she knew it wasn't going to be a walk in the park, even if Charlie didn't. But outright failure?

"Enough."

Zelena waved a hand, cutting Charlie off from whatever else she was going to say. "I don't want to hear it. I don't want to hear," she said, "Any more excuses. You didn't get it." She stared at Charlie. "You didn't get it, did you?" she snapped. "How did you not get it? How?" Her voice rose as she gestured off to the side, as if to indicate how close it was - how close they'd been to getting it. Until Charlie had messed it up. "It was so close! It was right there - " She cut herself off, her hand closing into a fist as she turned away, looking over to the shimmering staircases of the chamber and the columns of green bubbles. Her lips pursed together as she silently fumed, her nails pricking into her palm and almost - almost - drawing blood welling beneath her green skin.

"How close were you?" Her voice was carefully calm and controlled, tense like a trip wire and just as easy to snap. She couldn't bring herself to look at the other woman. It was a setback, but for some curious reason it was affecting her more than usual. "How close did you get to the artefact? How close exactly?" Frustration gnawed from the inside out, scratching at her insides as if eager to run rabid over this little person who denied her what she wanted. And there was some frustration aimed at her, too. The witch should've gone herself, she knew - should've dealt with the problem with her own magic and skills, not relying on some little servant to do it for her.

ADD.: Charlie Bradbury | WORDS: 732 | NOTES: SHE'S IN SO MUCH TROUBLE

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Charlie Bradbury
 Posted: Aug 23 2017, 10:18 AM
Quote


Supernatural

Mysterious Islands

Bach is online


31 years old / 59 posts




Well, Zelena clearly wasn't happy, and seeing her reaction was making Charlie feel even worse about not having completed the task. If only she'd just pushed through, it's not like she had been seeing the real Dean and Sam, they were hallucinations or projections or something pretending to be her worst fears, she wasn't even totally sure any more. She just remembered the further she went towards the centre of the forest, where whatever it was that Zelena needed resided, the worse the fears and hallucinations got, the more powerful they felt. By the time she'd gotten to where she'd stopped, where she'd seen the dead lifeless bodies of Sam and Dean, dead because she had failed to get back to them with the powerful dark magic to remove the mark of Cain, she felt like she had been drowning in fear and regret and grief, like it was so thick she could taste it.

She took a deep breath and did her best to try and calmly explain possibly how close she had come. Charlie was pretty sure she was close, the hallucinations had gotten worse the further she went, that had to mean something didn't it, that the worst fears would be at the centre where the goal was, at least that's what she theorised from the things she had read about the forest, though the stories weren't all that helpful, since most people ran before they got very far at all.

"Well, based on the various ummm, hallucinations? I guess that's what they were, but they were getting worse the closer I got, the fear becoming stronger and stronger, the air felt like, like I was breathing fear and grief, like it was trying to suffocate me. The last one I was at, it was so real, the hallucinations felt more real, like I honestly couldn't tell that they were hallucinations, not like the ones near the start of the forest. I mean it makes sense that it would get worse the closer to the centre right? So I think I was close, but I just, I wasn't expecting to see what I did, I got past the others OK, but the last one it just.........." She took a deep breath to try and steady her nerves, not that it helped though, in some ways she was more upset about failing in general than the fact she failed Zelena, and she hadn't even begun to think what this failure would mean for potentially getting Zelena's help for Dean when Charlie was done living up to her side of the agreement, to help Zelena first.

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Zelena
 Posted: Sep 12 2017, 01:40 PM
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Wizard of Oz

Oz

Jessica is online


38 years old / 200 posts




this isn't a curse
this is a second chance
Charlie was taking her sweet time in replying, and all the time Zelena was getting more and more coiled in her own frustration. She stayed silent, letting the pause stretch between them and almost daring it to tear at the seams. Hallucinations! She exhaled sharply, contempt oozing out of every pore. Something itched at her to ask what, exactly, had been too impossible for her to bear. What, precisely, had made her turn back and flee like the coward she was turning out to be. All of these words hovered on her tongue.

It was like a - a betrayal. She couldn't help taking it personally, like Charlie had actively meant to set her plans back, or had calculated a way to fail to bring her down. There was no evidence of her being a traitor to be had; in fact, Charlie had been the most loyal out of all of her servants, most eager, most conversational. And Zelena knew exactly why. The flying monkeys and the soldiers at the castle only did the bare minimum out of fear, out of a stomach-churning terror and a piteous, lowly desire to please. But Charlie did what she did in the name of saving someone else. Maybe a kind of...friendship.

Was she fabricating that? Thinking too much of the only person to really stick around, albeit under false pretences? The only other human she spent time with in her loneliness? She's only here because of her friend. She pushed the thought away.

But Zelena couldn't help feeling like this was targeted directly at her. She was weak - weak! And Zelena couldn't do with weakness. With folly. With the stupid actions of people not driven enough to go the full distance. She was determined to make this spell work, and make it work no matter the cost and no matter who got in her way. Inwardly she thought of Regina, with her servants and her resources. The thought only brought an even darker cloud over the witch and her teeth ground together. Her sister was weaker - far weaker than Zelena would ever be, even when brought to her knees. But she had to have better than this. Even her - the younger sister, the less magically able, the less wicked - did better than this.

And she could help herself by tidying up her own mess. Her expression hardened as she stared at the curtain in front of her, her back still turned on her servant. The witch knew what her instincts demanded her to do. She didn't even have to think about it. Charlie was just another tool, and like physical tools she could just as easily be thrown away when they started to malfunction or break down. And that made Charlie disposable, didn't it? Nothing better than any other member of her entourage who had failed her...?

No. No, she wasn't. Zelena could get a hundred guards and plenty more monkeys from the surrounding area, from the poor villages around the Emerald City. But there were only a few travellers who came to Oz, and even fewer since word of her reign had spread. If she responded - if she acted - She'd lose Charlie's trust then. And she'd been too useful, despite this slip up, to let go...or to kill.

And maybe she could prey on that.

She finally broke the silence, swallowing her words from before. No. This had to have a more subtle approach. "Is this what you wanted, Charlie?" The witch turned to face her, her words slow, deliberate. "I'm not angry. I'm just disappointed. Disappointed in you." If you listened very carefully, you could hear a change in tune; a shift of gears. "I thought you would be stronger than that. Better than that." Her gaze was penetrative, her words quiet. This time, she didn't have to raise her voice. She didn't have to do anything of the kind. "It was fake, Charlie. All of it was. Don't you want to help me? Help my kingdom?" She gestured off the chamber, down the halls of the Emerald City and outwards towards Oz - those people who, in reality, would like to see her head on a spike. "They need you." She took a step forward, ready to swing the harshest blow.

"Your friend needs you."

If she couldn't rule with loyalty, she'd rule with guilt - with manipulation, and a good story about a virtuous green queen trying to save her people. Zelena had a feeling this would work better than any fireball. There would've been amusement underneath the act, a wickedness glinting just out of sight - but she didn't have to act, in places; when she put her hand up to her forehead, it was a genuine display of strain. She looked over to Charlie, something truthful poking through amid the lies. "Where do you think we're going to get it now? I need my ingredients. You know I do." And you left it there knowing that, went on the guilt-tripping monologue. But Charlie, surely, would fill the gaps...do the hard work for her.

ADD.:Charlie Bradbury | WORDS: 579 | NOTES: SORRY FOR THE WAIT!

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Charlie Bradbury
 Posted: Oct 10 2017, 02:11 PM
Quote


Supernatural

Mysterious Islands

Bach is online


31 years old / 59 posts




Gah, she hated failing, it wasn't just that she felt bad because Zelena had been so good to her since she arrived, or the fact that in general Charlie was the sort to hate failing at anything. Didn't matter if it was a test or hacking some computer, or being there for her friends, failure just made her feel useless and horrible. Failing Zelena also meant possibly failing her friends back home, of course that was all assuming that Zelena could help her help her friends. She bit at her bottom lip slightly, she wasn't afraid, nope somehow despite everything Zelena didn't scare her really. Instead her face was full of a mix of feeling just generally horrible for letting Zelena down and anger at herself for having failed.

She had no idea what to say though, what could she say really. Zelena was a powerful witch and queen to boot, what could Charlie possible offer in way of any more answers or assistance. She wanted to though, she wanted to make this right and help Zelena with whatever she needed, not just because she wanted Zelena's help in return, but because Zelena had sort of grown on Charlie and she just genuinely wanted to help, even if that maybe wasn't something that Zelena was used to from people.

"Well, was that the only place you could get this thing you need, is there anywhere else that might have it, I mean you can travel via realms right, maybe it's in another realm. I promise, I will help however I can. Maybe someone else could help too, or well I suppose it's far more complex a thing than something you can just buy, but whatever you need, I promise I won't fail you again. Well, I promise I will try very hard to not fail you again. I want to help, I mean not just because you promised to help me, I just really want to help......"

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Zelena
 Posted: Oct 21 2017, 04:04 PM
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Wizard of Oz

Oz

Jessica is online


38 years old / 200 posts




this isn't a curse
this is a second chance
To be subtle went against Zelena's natural grain. Perhaps it was being around plenty of guards and monkeys who responded to harsh words and screaming for too long, but that was what usually got results - not the softly softly approach, not the quiet words meant to linger and worry at the mind. Impatience was gnawing at her but she swallowed it down. This was a better way to get through to little Charlie here. Show her her importance, how she was intrinsic to this all girls together team they'd set up - how much this had all meant and then what they had lost.

And it wasn't all acting. What she'd done, or hadn't done, had genuinely set the witch back by a few paces. Time was marching on and still Zelena didn't have any of her ingredients. Any. Her fingers rolled into a fist, her nails biting down into her palm. The scarecrow's brain wasn't good enough and now the symbol of courage was unreachable too...she could go after the symbol itself, but the magic of Oz never did agree with her, perhaps rebelling against her foreign blood - or so she'd always theorised. Zelena thought of the Crimson Heart and she exhaled in irritation. She'd expected better of herself by now. To get all of her ingredients, even. She should be casting the spell by now. How long had she been working on it? How long had this been going on for? She was so close and yet so far...and now dragged a few steps backwards by the useless, foolish girl in front of her. The servant terrified of a hallucination, for God's sake.

But it was...working. Maybe the inkling of truth, or more than an inkling, if she were honest, was getting through to her somewhere in the witch's body language, speech, in the mere power of suggestion. Not enough to make Charlie want to run away - and Zelena was glad for that, for a change - but enough to make her feel guilty at least. Enough to let doubt set in, let a bit of fear sneak into her mind about what this might mean for her friend. It was written all over her face - and Zelena was watching very, very intently. Maybe she was getting somewhere, after all. And especially if Charlie kept giving out suggestions.

Not very good suggestions, she'd hazard a guess. The girl didn't seem to be a strategic genius. If she were she would've understood the truth of this situation long ago, the Ozian considered with a little amusement - that quickly faded. Remind me why I'm listening? Every moment that went on she was further away from her ingredients. "I mean you can travel via realms, right..." Zelena lifted her chin. "I can." Her response was curt. What was she getting at? "You're quite powerful, Zelena." "I know." She didn't, and had never done, coy. "What's your point?" She narrowed her eyes as the other woman went on. No. Scratch that. She narrowed her eyes as this other woman tried to get out of her own mess.

Zelena looked to Charlie, frowning. "Another realm? No no no. That won't work." She turned away, as if to retreat back into her inner chamber behind the golden curtain - but even then, something still...resonated. She stopped dead and thought quickly, sifting through the possibilities.

To her surprise, it was actually rather good.

No. No, she'd been wrong. That...that was a good idea. The image Zelena had always had in her head was arriving at the Enchanted Forest with all of her ingredients, seeing the horror flash over Regina's face before her own timeline unravelled. But this did the job too, and she'd exhausted her options here in Oz. Maybe she did have a point after all.

She didn't think of her servant's loyalty, and certainly didn't think to thank her for it as she thought over this new idea. She would leave Charlie behind in a second if she didn't want to go, no matter her fondness. She dismissed the thought out of hand. I don't need the excess baggage. And the other woman wasn't covering herself in glory with her latest fiasco. She'd saved her hide with that suggestion of hers. But if she was willing, and if Zelena could gather the ingredients at the place of her birth...Zelena was been standing still, dangerously quiet. For a moment even she wasn't sure whether the other woman had said the right thing - something that could save her rather than plunge her even more into the hole she'd created for herself. But the witch turned back to her now, her gaze speculative rather than irritated. "There is a way," she said slowly. "But it is in another realm."

Her heels clicked on the emerald floor. "I have a bean," she mused, only to look to Charlie - in case she didn't know. "It's a magic bean. It's the best way to cross realms...if I moved along my plans." But I only have one bean. Not that she was going to tell Charlie that. She still thought Zelena was actually going to heal that friend of hers. "It's where I came from, and where I want to cast the cur - spell." A slip. "Eventually," she continued smoothly, "When I have all the ingredients. It's the place where it all began. The injustice I told you about? The reason why Oz is in peril?" She took a step forward, closing the gap between them - a concerned friend, a leader in trouble, more than the displeased tyrant of before. Someone just like her, with a problem to solve, people to think about. The anger had subsided. For now. Oz would most certainly be in peril if she didn't get what she wanted - but for now Charlie had placated some of that. "It's because of the people in that land. I'd have to collect everything there...." She trailed off, running it through in her mind’s eye. It was risky. But Charlie had temporarily redeemed herself, for the moment. Zelena's moods were fickle at the best of times.

ADD.:Charlie Bradbury | WORDS: 1027 | NOTES:

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