Fred opened the door to the house she shared with three other people and walked in. It was mid-morning and she would normally be in the Scavengers' Yard right now, but she had forgotten her gloves. They were right in the drawer of the desk in her room--she had just gone off without them this morning, her mind on other things. Noting that no one else seemed to be home, she strode over to her room.
Opening the appropriate door in the little desk, she scooped up the gloves and turned to go. As she did, something else in the drawer glinted slightly, catching her attention.
She turned back to see what it was.
Ah... of course. The memory crystal.
The memory crystal she had found in the Wilderness, the one she had been hanging on to for nearly two months now. It gleamed dully in the morning light, the facets winking at her through their cage of metal. Fred had put it in this drawer for safekeeping some time ago but this was getting to be ridiculous. She reached into the drawer again, carefully picked it up by its metal carry-rings, and then held it out in front of her face, staring at it.
"I should either use it or give it to that CPA person," she muttered to herself. No choice, really. She sat down on her bed, slipped her fingers past the metal rings, and touched the cool, clear crystal...
There was sudden silence, the total absence of any and all noise. Fred had almost been expecting that, given her experiences with memory crystals so far. But the sudden loss of sensation, of all feeling, was both unnerving and not at all expected. Fred tried to adjust quickly and pay attention to what was going on; she could still see.
Fred found that she was standing in some sort of half-lit corridor constructed of what appeared to be dark metal. It was all very practical; no decorations hung on the walls, nor had any sort of effort to liven the place up been made. Just metal rods wielded to metal walls, doing their stoic job of holding this place together… whatever this place might be.
The man from the memory Juliet's chainsaw had given Fred—'Curly'—was standing nearby, very close in fact; her head was tipped up slightly to look him in the face. She could see that he was dressed just the same as the last time she had seen him, even down to that tweed jacket. Curly was still for a moment, head cocked slightly to one side—was she talking to him? She couldn't tell if her lips were moving or not.
He spoke, suddenly and very quickly, his lips moving in silence. She tried to read what he was saying—'yes', 'no one in his right mind', 'passengers'—but she couldn't get it all. He brushed past her, heading toward a door at one end of the corridor. As he started to inspect it, Fred's field of vision shifted. She was looking up and down the corridor away from the man, looking for… what? Was she playing lookout? Or maybe she was just looking around, out of curiosity.
Fred's attention was drawn back toward Curly suddenly. He must have spoken again. She watched as he reached into a pocket of his coat and pulled out… something. He walked back toward her and she was able to get a good look at the thing as he held it out in front of himself.
It appeared to be a tube of silvery metal, thicker on one end and topped with a sort of half-ring of red metallic stuff on the other. Curly held it between his fingers roughly in the middle, so that the device was upright with the red metal ring pointing up. He held it in that position for a few moments, and then the door slid open all by itself. The man stuffed the tube back into his pocket—was it a lock pick? Some sort of remote control?—as he headed through the now-open door into the other room, Fred trailing after him.
It was strange, the way she could neither feel nor hear her feet on the ground. It rather gave her the sense that she was actually floating down the corridor—a not entirely unpleasant feeling, though decidedly odd to say the least. As though she were a ghost.
They both walked through the door and then stopped short. There were perhaps a dozen young people wearing full-body jumpers of saffron cloth standing in the room. From her position behind Curly, Fred could see him start to gesture at them reassuringly, and he was probably speaking to them as well. She had the sneaking suspicion these people were not part of whatever Curly and she were trying to do, and were, in fact, completely unexpected.
From the same pocket that he had taken the silvery gadget, Curly now withdrew a white paper bag. He held it out to the young people, apparently encouraging them to take some of whatever was in the bag. One of the women reached for the bag timidly, only to have her hand snatched away by one of the men. He stared at them with open hostility, his face clearly saying that he didn't trust Curly or Fred one bit.
Curly offered the bag to Fred. Her arm, clad in a red jacket of some sort, reached toward the bag, and her red gloved-hand came out with a small, brightly colored object. Holding it so that they could see she'd really got one, she then popped it into her mouth.
Taste! Sugar and citrus (lemon if she was not mistaken), the taste of the sweet filled her mouth. It was familiar, nostalgic,
Would you like a
something she had been missing without knowing it. Curly turned back to the young people, offering the bag of sweets once more…
Fred blinked. Well. That had been an interesting memory, though as usual it raised far more questions than it answered. She would have to see if the Wilderness had any of those sweets. It would be a pity not to find some if she could, now that she knew what her favorite candy was. She could take some now, and hopefully when the candy store opened they would know where to get more. She put the used crystal back in the drawer, closed it, took her gloves, and left.
(Fred received this memory crystal for completing puzzles in the Myst Wilderness. There is no punishment.)
(Sight/Taste memory crystal from season 17, episode 5 [episode 108 overall]- Horns of Nimon, part I.)