UNIFIED IN UNIVERSAL VIBRATION
Backstage, we follow Ria Lockhart with the Sorkin-cam. But there’s no fanciful, rapid fire walk-and-talk going on here: she’s just minding her own business.
Until she turns a corner, and stops short.
Sitting in the middle of the hallway–on a small rug, full lotus position–is her acquaintance, if one could call him that. All lank, lean muscle, dreads, and whatever collection of beads and feathers he’s acquired, Sage Pontiff doesn’t even open his eyes–or he closed them before the camera turned. Either way, he speaks with the sort of calm meditative demeanor that he’s becoming known for, Cali desert burnout by way of Bhagwan Rajneesh.
Sage Pontiff: I don’t like to ascribe negative wording towards things we hold inside of ourselves. Darkness, rage, anger, evil–these are labels, and labels are very much a sort of western compulsion. Like, they just have to have a box for everything to live in, right? No space for nuance, for complexity…for tenderness.
Ria Lockhart: Dude, Maybe I wasn’t clear, but–
Sage Pontiff: Oh, you were the crystal waters of the Honokalani. You have what you call ‘darkness’, because you’ve been lulled into the myth of all things being binary. Everything must be good or bad, clean or dirty, positive or negative. What I’m offering you is the real truth, something that hasn’t been filtered through the machine of our society and stripped of its joy and meaning. Something pure. Because I see who you are. For that camera, for your bosses, for what you think the world wants out of you. But I know the real Ria Lockhart. I just don’t want you to forget who she is.
With this, he opens his eyes, smiling easily. He supports his entire bodyweight on his palms and raises up, unfolding his legs and uncoiling himself to standing. Ria glares at Sage during this entire process before shaking her head.
Ria Lockhart: You know me? The real me?! Bullshit! I don’t know what your game is, but it’s starting to piss me off! You have no idea what I’ve been through! Not in PRIME, not in other promotions and not in life! You can’t just read an online bio, have a two second conversation with me and just act like you’ve totally got me down. I don’t really care what the cosmic forces or whatever are telling you. And binary? Come on, dude.
Sage Pontiff: Look deep, Ria. Look outward, too. Expansion of consciousness isn’t something to be afraid of, no matter what your parents or the government thought police might have been whispering to you. This isn’t some power trip and this isn’t me making assumptions. We are unified in spirit, in universal vibration, siblings in this grand experiment of life. I’ve merely passed through the veil and slept amongst stars and galactic formations. And that gave me sight, sister. I don’t know you like we used to play kickball, and I don’t know you in a biblical sense. That’s…
He waves his hand in front of her face, around her head.
Sage Pontiff: …that’s hard data stuff. I’m talking about something more profound. A chance to have all the puzzle pieces again. A chance to feel whole.
Ria rolls her eyes and scoffs at Sage. She puts her hands on her hips, her impatience with the conversation clear.
Ria Lockhart: You can search the mystical all you want if that’s what makes you happy. No matter what you say, I’m not buying your bullshit! I’m as whole as I’ve ever been. I’m on my own path to happiness. Quite frankly, interacting with you lately is putting a damper on that. If you know me as well as you claim you do, then something should be obvious. That thing is…
It’s brief. If one isn’t paying attention, it would be very easy to miss. But for a quick second… Ria’s eyes flash neon green.
Ria Lockhart: Getting on my bad side is a very stupid thing to do.
Lockhart pushes past Sage, anger radiating off her form. As she storms off, Pontiff keeps an eye on her, his heterochromatic eyes hardly even narrowing. He smiles and bows towards her, before gathering his mat as the scene cuts away…