And the Wind Began to Howl

Participants:

brooke_icon.gif tamara_icon.gif

Scene Title And the Wind Began to Howl
Synopsis The monotony of Brooke's existence in Moab is broken by a peculiar young interloper.
Date April 7, 2009

Various Parts of Moab Federal Penitentiary


It's impossible to plan for every possibility. Even in the most secure prison facility in the country; even in one of the very, very few that utilize Evolved abilities as part of the security measures. There are still chinks in the defenses, and the ability which takes advantage of them is much like water in its capacity to identify and exploit even the smallest one.

All she has to do is wait and watch, and Tamara is very good at that.

She creeps through the corridors, a mouse hiding in the dwelling of a giant; the passages are so little-used she can easily put herself wherever the guards are not. After all, the prisoners are all locked up in their very secure cells; the only people in the halls are facility staff. There's no reason for concern, because even if someone gets past the perimeter they'll still get caught on camera.

Except when the girl who crossed that perimeter some time ago knows exactly where the 'blind spots' of the system are, and when the watcher isn't watching her particular monitor. It's a knowledge she would be hard-pressed to explain to anyone else, more akin to instinct and intuition; that place is safe to stand, in this moment the stars align and she can cross a stretch of corridor without the undesired consequences which would come if she walked into it at any other time.

But there's something else she's here for, above and beyond simply ghosting through the building, and it's time to take that risk.

Tamara stops in the middle of the hallway, turning to face the artificial eye of a watching camera, and patiently waits to be noticed.

Released from her invisible bonds some hour ago so as to take care of basic needs like bathing and eating, only the physical bonds remain on her now. Chains snake around Brooke's body, holding her fast in the room, facing the wall of monitors, which she now watches dutifully, lest the puppet master be sent in to pluck her strings once more.

Something isn't right.

Pale fingers scratch against concrete floors restlessly. A morphine-induced haze clouds her true vision. Her skin is cold and feels as though it's attempting to crawl free from muscle and bone. For a moment, everything's clear. She holds her breath and she feels whole again, but her control is only fleeting and the medication pulls her back under rapidly like a wave over a floundering swimmer in the ocean. Something is making it worse than usual. A bead of sweat rolls down her back despite the chill in her bones.

Finally the disturbance becomes apparent, and even stares her in the face. Left of the middle, so easy to miss in corridors so often empty, stands a girl. She isn't a prisoner. Brooke knows all their faces now. The faces of the staff are a blur. They have shifts. Move in and out. But this girl… This girl, Brooke is sure she hasn't seen before. Her head tilts to one side curiously and she stares. Where did you come from? she wonders silently. On the other side of the monitor, the stranger knows she's being watched. Brooke should be sounding an alarm, but such a phenomenon is too incredible to report so quickly. Miss Lynwood finds herself intrigued for the first time since her incarceration. Despite what's expected of her, she can't help but act… Contrariwise.

"Curiouser and curiouser…"

Disheveled and out of place amidst empty hall after empty concrete hall, her long blond hair tangled from a lack of regard, a waif who is simultaneously anything but lost. Possibilities shift, a landscape as ephemeral as the contours of desert dunes in a sandstorm, and the paths that come to the fore bring a smile to Tamara's face. It's a child's playground expression, bright and open, better-suited to strong sunlight than gloomy prison halls; the sort of smile two mischievous co-conspirators might exchange.

This might just work out right after all.

The teenager moves, but her motion is not to flee; her feet remain fixed to their places on the floor. She knows she's being watched, and it doesn't perturb her. Instead, Tamara lifts her hand, the appendage gliding up to place a single finger across that playful smile.

Ssh.

This is our little secret.

Slowly, Brooke's fingers crawl across the floor, nails tapping softly, toward the red button on the wall behind her that will alert staff to a security breach.

But that smile.

Digits change course and instead her arm twists as she itches along her spine where that single bead of sweat caused that minor irritation that's simply impossible to ignore.

Not entirely unlike the girl in the monitor.

Cobalt blue eyes shift from screen to screen, watching the girl's progress through the facility. What could she possibly hope to accomplish?

The button goes unpushed, and Tamara's head bobs in approval. Having gained some measure of tolerance, she abandons — for the moment — the halting, evasive course that she's kept so far; the watcher won't raise an alert. Not now.

Her feet carry her through the corridors of Green Level, but the teen spares no attention for the doors she passes; she doesn't seem to be searching for a particular person, nor indeed to be searching at all. She walks quickly, but at a pace that can be comfortably sustained; Tamara isn't in a hurry. Neither does she show any hesitation, any uncertainty; she appears to be as familiar with the edifice as are those who walk the halls on an everyday basis.

Her route brings Tamara to the medical center, unstaffed at this hour; a door beyond which Brooke's view doesn't reach.

Frustration settles in in full force as Tamara disappears from her view. Brooke's nails gather and ball up the fabric of her tank top, clutching the hem in her hands. She's familiar with cameras that don't violate the sanctity of a physician's domain. Impatiently, she watches and waits.

On another monitor, a patrol rounds a corner, heading in Tamara's direction. She's come so far only to be caught now?

The movements of the monitor slow, skip, and halt and Brooke glances absently at the red eye aimed toward her briefly before returning her attention to the screens that line that terrible wall ahead of her.

The patrol marches its way down the corridor, the banter of bored guards impossible to hear and understand through a purely visual system but still unmistakably evident in their manner and behavior. The infirmary door remains closed, to all appearances exactly the way it should be, untouched and undisturbed. Around a corner, down another hall, onto a new bank of monitors — the patrol continues on, and boring monotony is left in their wake.

Tamara opens the door just far enough for her slight form to ease out through it. There's no visible difference, nothing in her hands; perhaps it was only a place to hide. Or maybe her errand was strictly something inside. She steps out into the corridor, stops, waves at the camera to make sure she is the center of the watcher's attention. Hi again.

Move, Brooke wills Tamara on silently. You can't dodge them forever and I can only pretend I don't see you for so long. Her face remains impassive for the ever watchful eyes upon her.

"All along the watchtower," sings the dark-haired woman quietly, "princes kept the view. While all the women came and went, barefoot servants too, but…"

The shirt is smoothed back into place and both hands are planted firmly on the hard floor on either side of her, fingers tapping out a rhythm to her music.

"Outside in the cold distance, a wild cat did growl. Two… riders were approachin'."

A small smile tugs at the corners of her mouth, a light appearing in Brooke Lynwood's eyes.

"And the wind began to howl."

She doesn't hear, can't hear, the thoughts Brooke doesn't speak; wouldn't hear them if she did. But there is an outcome Tamara desires to happen, and certain actions which lead to it; meaningful to her only in the path they describe, carrying greater significance for those who read meaning into them. It's not incorrect to do so.

The teen bobs her head. She points at the camera, then taps two fingers against her wrist, where a watch face might rest if she were to wear one. And then she, too, takes off into the halls, leaving the medical center behind — but unlike the patrol, Tamara once more makes deliberate use of the shadows and voids, falling out of Brooke's sight. There is a pattern to the monitors and a consistency in their layout — but as soon as the watcher begins to anticipate where Tamara should reappear, that's exactly where she isn't. Predictable is for other people.

Wide eyes search screens frantically, the lilting music falters. "You're playing games with me, girl," Brooke mutters to someone who will never hear her. And so the playful child toys with the spiteful one. A pattern is tapped into the floor with seemingly no rhyme or reason as to which finger taps in which sequence.

Left four, right one, right three, left five, right two, left two…

If it means anything at all is a mystery. Predictable is for suckers.


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Previously in this storyline…
Big Sister is Watching

Next in this storyline…
Here, Kitty, Kitty

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