i feel you are a poison; yes i am a poison too | carter + hill

      She’s been working the stress ball that the physical trainer forced into her possession for the last half hour with a certain level of tenacity that speaks to some undercurrent of restlessness that’s not evident in the stillness of her resting expression. Still for too long, Maria’s been building up a font of pent energy, and the stress ball isn’t helping ( well it is- technically, by helping to start restrengthening that muscle in her newly cast-free arm ). The email thread on her screen lost her interest long ago and when she checks the time, it seems like a good time to take a break. Plus she’s been ITCHING to do some sort of physical activity that’s not running. The treadmill can go straight to hell as far as she’s concerned.

     It’s freeing, standing and stepping away from the monitor that only continues to live-stream email updates like it’s possessed. Maria pivots and pulls the arm across her body, hooking the back of her hand against her left tricep. There’s no longer a lingering bruise and the stretch aches a little before she feels the muscle start to relax. Medical cleared her for light strength work this week ( as if she has that kind of TIME ) and cautioned her against overdoing it. Ice and stretching are key, before and after.

     And so she abandons her office in favor of the gym. A quick change of clothes and she’s ready to sweat out the stressors that’ve been weighing on her mind. Several stories below the surface of the city, Maria’s surprised to find the room itself isn’t crowded. A few agents hitting the machines, one more familiar than the rest on a back treadmill. The Director lowers her chin, target acquired. It’s only fair, after all. Sharon’s caused her enough grief over the few weeks to at LEAST earn a snide remark or two.

                               “You cleared by medical to be in here?” There’s a hint of humor to her tone, along with a heavy dose of a challenge. She’s not here to SCOLD, even if that IS the case. Sharon’s a big girl. She can handle herself. If she wants to risk her recovery, that’s her issue- technically she’s on leave anyway. Maria rests her arm along the treadmill railing, awaits her answer with a quirked brow.


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