Brain Teasers


devon2_icon.gif kaylee5_icon.gif

Scene Title Brain Teasers
Synopsis Devon asks Kaylee for help with his mental defenses.
Date June 16, 2019

Ferry Docks near Fort Hero

It's been a while since the fiasco that became of unearthing Devon's memories. A couple of months at least. Easily long enough to make the phone call he'd made to ask Kaylee to meet with him feel a little awkward. More awkward than when he'd asked for her help the first time, for sure. Blame it on his lingering immaturity, his adolescent self making a simple request feel like, to him, the greatest inconvenience he could impose on a person. Ever.

In spite of causing himself discomfort, perhaps even giving the telepath a good chuckle, the request was made.

In the fine summer afternoon, Dev sits on a bench facing the water. Somewhere across the bay is the ferry that runs between the Safe Zone and Governor’s Island. He'd chosen the location because of its openness, the fresh air and sunshine felt nice.

And also because if anything went wrong, he'd rather deal with Bob than Luther.

With arms folded loosely against his chest, he watches a half dozen gulls play on the easily rolling caps. Their noise is a distant thing, but still raucous when the wind carries it in from the water. It should be a calming thing, observing the birds doing bird things, but a nervous energy fills him, and he shrugs his shoulders as one might anxiously check a pocket watch. Telepathy has always made him a bit skittish.

“As it should,” a voice says from next to him. Not a moment ago, Devon had been alone on that bench, but in a blink Kaylee was there on the other side of the bench, an arm draped along the back, looking at him. Looking her way, he’ll find himself reflected in a pair of mirrored aviators. “Especially, from someone who doesn’t ask first.”

With that, Kaylee mentally pulls the thread on the hastily made block and waits. It will take a moment, but then Devon will realize that they had a conversation and she had asked for permission to test him. “Unfortunately, I get the impression, telepaths like me are rare,” she adds through a heavy sigh. Her constant plight.

“Either way, you’re defenses are good. The past training shows,” Kaylee points out with a bit of a smile while fingers rubbing at her temple. “Better by far then Emily’s, but still breakable.”

The voice doesn't exactly startle, but it's hard to miss the surprise in Devon's expression when he looks at Kaylee. Usually he's good about knowing when people are approaching, today he just must have been lost in his own thoughts, distracted by the scenery. It doesn't occur to him immediately that Kaylee could have had something to do with his inattentiveness.

“Far as I know, I've only met one other and she single handedly soured me on the ability.” Rather than accuse the telepath beside him of anything — he had asked for her help after all — he goes straight into justifying his reticence. “Two, technically, but I'm willing to say the other was operating under duress.”

Dev raises a hand to scrub at his hair. “No formal training, just a practice at keeping things deeply buried.” A defense mechanism really, avoidance tactics are a thing he's pretty good at. “I probably can't make them entirely impenetrable, can I?”

“If more telepaths learned manners, maybe we wouldn’t have such a bad reputation”, Kaylee huffs out at the mention of other telepaths, but then offers Devon a gentler smile. “You don’t ever have to worry about me, which I know isn’t much of a comfort, but ask Richard and Liz about me if you need more assurances.

“And no… no you can’t,” Kaylee is at least honest about it, “There are always different levels and type of telepaths. You can limit what they see and make them really work hard for it.” She taps a finger to the side of her own head, “Part of that strategy is to not let them touch you. Did they other’s touch you?”

Reaching over, she doesn’t touch Devon, just lets the fingers hover near his temple. “Skin to skin strengthens the bond, but the temple is best.” Kaylee wobbles her head a bit, indecisive. “For me at least. Like I said each telepath is different,” The hovering hand drops away. “And realize this won’t be a quick fix, Just like any muscle you work out.”

“They, and Avi, are why I asked for your help the first time.” Devon had been the one to bring up recovering missing memories, and he's always valued those opinions. “And, as far as I can tell, you did just that.” It's a leap of faith, never allowing himself to worry that Kaylee had seen more than she claimed.

He seems to expect the negative answer to his question. Just as no physical armor can ever be entirely impenetrable, there will always be something able to break through his mental defenses.

He nods in acceptance, understanding. His eyes shift slightly, registering the movement toward his head. “Joy did,” he answers as his focus slides back to Kaylee. “I don't know if it was just… her trying to be supportive or… I don't know. She kept eye contact pretty firmly.”

The telepath’s head slowly nod when he describes what Joy did. “Eye contact works, too. I can do it without any of that, but it leaves me nursing a nice migraine.” There is a touch of humor there, since she’s been there, “…but touch is pretty necessary for many of them.” .

There is a small understanding smile on Kaylee’s lips as she watches the younger man, “How you holding up otherwise? Find anymore answers?”

A shoulder immediately follows the question, Devon leaning on old habits to feign unconcern toward his situation. “Liz wants to have my teeth ripped from my face so we can look at genetic markers.” He sounds so excited by the idea. “Theoretically the marrow shouldn’t’ve changed yet? So it might give us markers to compare against to see what’s been altered.” He’s very excited by that prospect. (Not really.)

With a sigh, he rubs the back of his neck. His eyes slide off to look over the water. “I mean. It can’t hurt, right? Short of asking Monroe or Cong… Like we’ll be lucky enough for that chance.”

There is a grimace at the mention of teeth extraction. “Ouch. Well, technically it will hurt,” Kaylee offers with a lop-sided smile. Pulling teeth hurts after all. “But I get your meaning. This will be safer and keeps you away from them.” There is a thoughtful look that passes over her features and she looks out over the water.

“I’m surprised they haven’t come back for you,” Kaylee sounds rather curious. “Adam has so many resources under his belt. He wants something he takes it… yet you got away.” Cutting a look back over out of the corner of her eye she asks, “Have you thought about the idea that they might have let you go?” Leaning back and folding her arms across her chest, brows furrow. “I’m not talking about Joy. I’ve been thinking about a lot of things lately. What if Adam was in on the escape….” The words trail off.

WIth an amused huff, Kaylee seems to brush the suspicion away. “Maybe you simply served your purpose… I don’t know. Still something keeps nagging at me,” She shifts to look at him fully and asks, “Why were memories of your escape missing? And why was the one blocked?” Hands spread in a helpless manner. “I feel like there is a piece of the puzzle missing.”

“So’m I,” Devon admits of his continued freedom. “But also not, because it could be just that.” He might have been allowed to escape. He doesn't know much about Adam, there's nothing on psychological analysis that he's ever seen, no way to guess at motives. “I wondered if Joy wasn't part of it. If she let me go, played the part of an ally to further whatever schemes. I wouldn't put it past any of them.”

He raises a hand to rub at his jaw. Missing pieces. “You don't really believe that I served whatever purpose, do you?” His question is an honest one, even if his tone sounds a little surprised that Kaylee might suggest it.

Dropping his hand, Dev half turns so he can look at the telepath. “All of the memories are missing. There's the mission in January and then Brighton Beach with no time in between.” He pauses, giving that information a chance to sink in before continuing. “The memories you found don't fit anywhere. I know they happened, I remember them happening. But when and what order?” He shakes his head.

“I don’t know what I believe, Devon,” Kaylee admits with a lift of a single shoulder. “Maybe you are serving one now by being free or maybe he completed what he needed to do.” Hands spread with her indecision.

“A question for you… “ Kaylee rests her elbow on the back of the bench as she considers the young man. “Why those specific memories? And why was the memory of your escape blocked? When was it blocked?” Hence her apprehension. A finger goes up, to hold off a response just yet. “And if that was only one attempt at escape, where did the memory of the actual escape go?”

Turning on the bench to look out at the water again, Kaylee sighs. “I just… I feel like Adam it too smart and has lived too long to be so dumb and if he knew Joy back in te 1600s, you’d think he’d know her…” The telepath’s words trail off, brows lowered in deep thought. There is a heavy sigh, before her utters, “I don’t know. I just can’t shake the feeling, but I hope I’m wrong and just being overly paranoid.”

“I doubt any of us would be here if not for a healthy dose of paranoia.” Devon has spent enough time around certain individuals to have picked up some of their habits. And ideas. Even though some of them may dabble a bit too far into practices of paranoid considerations, he at least makes the effort to see all sides.

That's what he tells himself, anyway.

“There's hardly anything on Adam,” he admits quietly. He's seen the dossiers in the files Wolfhound keeps, read them nearly to memorization. There's little enough of substance and nothing to firmly pin motives to. “Even less on Joy. Unless there's anywhere else to look. I just don't know.”

He sighs, tips his head back so he's looking up at the sky. “What if there's something in those memories for why. Something we missed last time. Or.” Cutting into that thought, Devon spends a second to analyze it, to decide how best to phrase the idea. He sits up, a perplexed look directed at Kaylee. When he speaks again it's slow, words chosen carefully.

“Liz brought someone to do postcognative voodoo on the pants I was found in. Something strange happened then and… do you think you could tap that, maybe unlock more?”

The question brings Kaylee up short and Devon finds her kinda staring at him, brows slightly furrowed as she considers it carefully. “You know… “ The words are measured and carefully spoken “.. I’m not sure.” Blue eyes flick up to look at a point on Devon’s forehead.

But then they drop to look him in the eye again. “I never really got to look to see if there was more.” Things had changed quite a lot since that day. Kaylee’s brows tip upward in a questioning way. “I could take a second look, see if I missed any other doors.” Doors being a metaphor of course. Plus, she might snag the memory about the pants while she is at it.

“But not like… right this moment.” As much as she really wants to dive right in there. “After last time, I feel like we need a spotter.” In truth, Kaylee has started doing that more often.

“Definitely with a spotter.” Even if Kaylee hadn't said it, Devon would have made sure there was someone watching their backs. After last time, there's at least three people who'd kill him — two figuratively and one probably attempted literally — if there were further attempts without backup. “If we can find anything else, it might help with…”

He's really not sure, and it shows with a shrug when his words fail.

“I really appreciate your…” A nod tilts his head in the telepath’s direction. “I mean, you're risking a bit. Even if your curse is lifted.”

There is a low chuckle that escapes the telepath, a hand dismissing his worry. “I would have seen anything too dangerous.” It’s said mostly to alleviate his worry. “Those doors were just the first I found, who knows what might be there if I dig a little deeper.”

It’s fine… Maybe.

There is a small touch of worry that threads its way through her core, but Kaylee doesn’t let it reach her smile. Yaeko… Joy was a woman of many abilities. “These are the types of risks I’m used to, I know what I am getting into. Besides, we may come up empty handed, but if we don’t look, we’ll always wonder.”

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