Caught Up


huruma_icon.gif lucille4_icon.gif

Scene Title Caught Up
Synopsis After the Hound briefing, Huruma tugs Lucille aside. Neither of them can anticipate what's to come.
Date February 27, 2020

It's not long after the huddle in the Bunker's conference room that Huruma seeks out Lucille; she waits until the pings of others are further away before hunting the younger woman down in the corridor. Plainclothes, swapped from bloodied ones in the short time between arrival, medical, briefing. For her part, she hardly refrains from favoring a leg, still kneading the cold pack that was on her neck, now in her hand at her side.

"Lucille." Huruma always uses her full name, so it lacks urgency- - no Lu, Luce, 'Cille from her, ever- - so it is nothing pressing until she adds a growl of, "We need to talk." Preferably not in the halls.


Lucille turns towards the older woman and looks her in the eyes, a veil of empathy exudes from her, the previous day had been hard in more than just the physical. Eyebrow raising before she nods and juts her head down the hall where she leads them to her room. "How are you feeling?" Hand going to the bandaged arm where Lucille received her cut from the teleporter.

"Dad and his ability…" There's still a flicker of astonishment there coupled with familiar bittersweetness. To have him and to lose him. There is failure there that Lucille takes and holds. She should have been able to bring him home.

Whatever that meant with the nature of his crimes. Maybe get him away and fake a death, the endless scenarios have indeed played in her head.

"Good enough." Her answer isn't exactly curt, but it is definitely an answer to part small talk out of the way. She has given her leg just a bit of rest via the other. Huruma checks the door behind her out of habit, turning to Lucille and lifting a brow. A hand moves to her slim shoulder, and the empath allows Lucille a few moments to recognize her own feelings first.

"He never told you?" Huruma's brow knits in question, though it passes. Her voice falls a touch lower, pale eyes rather focused. . "Whatever it is you feel guilty over, I expect it isn't something you control. So." So stop it.

"When we get there - the Ziggurat." Right to the point now; Huruma is as serious as the younger woman has ever seen. Even the beat of her heart is a stoic repetition, muscles tensed from neck, down her spine. "Leave Adam to me."

"He told me and the pennies provided a visual it's just… Bizzare seeing him like that." What he should have been, how the world would have been so very different for the Ryans family. The acknowledgement of her guilt doesn't get a reply but Lucille focuses on other emotions: mainly doubt.

"Are you sure you're able to do what's necessary?" Sensing the tightness in Huruma's body and mirroring it in her emotions. "I know it isn't easy, picking a side." The older woman's history with both men was extensive to say the least.

"I expected a lot of things from you last operation but, not that. It was surprising," It was a sight to see her mentor in such a way her emotions so untethered and pushed to the forefront. Lucille herself was emotional and torn over her father's involvement and Adam's dealings but she still lifted her Banshee to take her dad down. She was still willing to stay the course.

When Lucille mentions her surprise, it goads out a narrow look from Huruma.

"Funny thing to hear about expectations from the one who went in knife first." Huruma saw it vastly different, especially when it came to actions. Her mouth flattens into a line, the corners a frown.

"I was in control." It's never often that the two come at odds, and yet. Huruma's features shift, the slight baring of teeth with the admonishing seethe. "This is not as black and white as you may believe. I will do what I must to end this.

" Her tension forcibly eases, sucking on the back of her teeth and pushing out her frustration. It isn't Lucille that's pissing her off.

"This will not be the first time I knock heads with your father." Huruma's eyes do carry the tension still. "And Adam… he owes me a reckoning."

"If that one died there are others to chase and kill still," is she ashamed of her actions? There is none of that in this room. "Neither of us was in control, I don't need to read emotions to know that and if that is you in control I would hate to see how you handle the next time we see old friends," Lucille snaps sharply and cold to the baring of teeth. To say that the eldest Ryans had been riding on her last nerve would be a severe understatement and the tidal wave of wrath that bubbles just beneath the eternal calm the woman tries to exude becomes more apparent, stifling the room.

"I should have went for the heart, for all he's done. For Burr," Using the old nickname for Nathalie and her eyes narrow. "He deserves death a thousand times over," Her words like sharpened steel as she grinds her teeth.

"The time for reasoning with them is over, my dad had us right there. Three of his loved ones," There is fury for her father, it's not just Adam. "He stuck to the ways that were manufactured for him. He's made his choice." Saying that leaves a bitter taste in that mouth. "I know my father. You know Adam. They are warriors." A looming foreboding feeling strikes down the middle of the storm of the emotions that Lucille manages like an ebb and flow of energy cycling through her and around her. "They will not come quietly. We," Lucille falls short and looks Huruma dead on with her resolve gathering behind her gaze.

"We cannot afford to hesitate. The costs are too great," To condemn her father to death doesn't come easy but if Lucille had learned anything from the old man was that you did what was necessary. It was a path of his that she had desperately seeked to immaculate. Perhaps too well.

"Don't patronize me." Huruma's frame is rigid, eyes bright and pupils pinned. "It's not enough that you're foolish to think it was Adam who was behind Nathalie, but you seem to be under the distinct impression," the empath already towers, and now the dark at the edges of her vision scrapes at the air around her, a hundred ragged, scrabbling claws at an invisible barrier. "That I am some simpering, stupid child."

"I was in control and if you want to see otherwise," Huruma's tongue presses against the edge of her teeth. "Feel free to test me." Lucille isn't the only one to be on her last frayed nerve, quelling it's touch behind a firm hand. That's because Lucille learned from the best.

"You know that with your father, what we see, is not always what we get. This isn't some bloody whim of his." It's not a light decision. It wasn't a light decision. Not for any of them. Huruma's teeth grate together, her features harsh save for the softening of her eyes.

"You see meat and bone and synapse- -" And of Huruma, Lucille can sense the rattle of her pulse and the strained electric currents at her brain. The shiver of muscle at solar plexus and stomach. Pain which is not pain, writhing despairingly under her skin. It's clear that she knows full well what could come next for them- - and that she is sorrowful for it all. For Adam. For Ben. "Leave souls to me."

"You left Garza to grab dad! I don't think you're stupid I think you're as emotional as anyone would be given the circumstances. As emotional as I am." Lucille's tone is firm and she holds her ground with feet spread and one arm thrown in the air in the frustration. "If he's not responsible for Nathalie then who? I rushed Adam out of spite. But he is the objective still, you had him." Hearing about her father's shady ways of doing things doesn't help the situation.

"I am fucking tired of the way he does things. It's shitty to everyone he loves. He leaves, that's his answer! His children deserve better, Pippa deserves better!" Lucille roars and it almost feels like she'll never be able to scream those words to her own father, who knows if he won't be underground and unobtainable after the clusterfuck he ported into.

Lucille did see in the physical, more so than many but she knew how all those things could point to emotional cues still, Huruma had an advantage and what she felt and what Lucille felt were on vastly different spectrums. Lucille is just angry. Angry at her father, angry at herself, at Adam, at all the fucking people involved.

"I did not leave Garza." Huruma presses a finger against her temple, "I had him, here." Her hand unfurls, fingers as claws ripping in a gesture away from her own head. "And… Baruti Naidu is to blame for what happened to Nathalie. Mazdak." She says the man's name with a bile in her mouth. A personal distaste formed long before he crossed Wolfhound.

"Of course you all deserve better!" The empath's brace is just as surefooted, even though her expression twists between hurt and frustration. "We all do. And he deserves to hear you say that to his face." There is more than one way to strike at the heart of someone. And Huruma, despite the clicking of her teeth at the end of her words, supports the notion that hearing that will do just that to Ben Ryans.

"He still loves us, that hasn't changed. Even if he's being fucking dense." Huruma and cussing always stands out; she's truly angry too. Why are they taking it out like this?

"His mind- -" Hands splay at the air around her temples. Huruma's pupils widen, deep and black. "It's - - right. It wasn't wrong before, just- - a buoy held down, and it's been let go. The same for Adam- - you can't- - your father is more him than he has ever been, Lucille. There is hope in reaching him- -"

Reason isn't gone. It can't be. However she's gotten to this point, it doesn't matter. Lucille was right to question. Huruma's voice splinters for the sake of a dearest friend. For his family. Lucille's. Hers.

"- -there really is. There has to be. He's there. He's not gone."

Luce looks off to the wall and sets her jaw, thoughts assaulting her mind. Mazdak… the terrorist group that has become more famous the last few weeks. Naidu, the name is filed in the back of her mind for research later though it sounds as if Huruma knows him already. "He didn't do the deed, I'll give him that."

She was weary, she had said it to his face before and so to have an opportunity again. "I don't know. I'm tired of having to tell him these things to his face." It had taken so long for her to begin to let go of that bitterness she held for him never being around. "What makes it worse is that it's not really him, he was made into this father who was never home. He had a chance, a chance to be different than what they made him. He wasted it."

Her inside tear apart at the words but she feels herself leaning on a basic truth: she had been hurt enough.

"I will try," A beat, "Because he is my father an-" she doesn't continue instead on the other side of this problem. "But Adam,"

Lucille shifts from facing the wall to looking back at her mentor, "There are so many more than me that want his head on a spike and many actual physical copies. I don't think there's any other ending for him besides death." She wants to urge Huruma, comfort the soon to be losses. The ones she can't see not occurring. Not with how wild this had all turned out. "Don't play that losing game."

Huruma draws a hand down her face as Lucille looks away, other hand at her hip, head bowed.

"…He didn't waste it." is all that she grits out from behind her teeth. The empath offers no explanation for her words. She leaves it as it is, instead choosing to put Lucille's presence under her sights and senses. Huruma has evened out again by now, pursing her lips in response. "Yes, I know, you and everyone else wants a bite too."

"Death is so often a mercy." Huruma drops her hands to her sides, shoulders back, posture still defensive in the way of a creature in a cage. "It doesn't make him suffer for his deeds. It only serves to satisfy the hand behind the blade."

"And though I'll be the first to admit that feels wondrous…" Lucille's ability has no issue in seeing the rise in Huruma's blood as she talks of shedding it; Huruma feels it in herself like a cobra, yet she does nothing to hide what goes on under the surface. Above, as firm as ever.

It's not like the lust for battle she's used to seeing. It's an echo of something born long before Lucille was. Huruma's statement is unfinished, her eyes distant at nothing. Lucille is visually shunned for the space of a few breaths, a few tangled thoughts.

"You love me, don't you?" Pale eyes meet blue, pupils like inkwells in Huruma's gaze.

"What… what would you do if it were me, instead of Adam?"

"Just one of me,"

"And I loved you, too?"

She doesn't reply verbally to Huruma's half finished statements but her eyebrows do furrow. It felt wasted to her, Lucille would always have bias. Blood and temperature in flux, the same as Luce's own. Knowing of death and the consequences not just physically but mentally has made the younger woman long consider if she was done with it, taking life. It was a question that she still was not able to answer.

"Of course I do," Shaking her head and one hand dropping to the side, for all her anger that Lucille felt, Huruma was still a very close friend, mentor, family. The rest of Huruma's hypothetical is heard and a cool expression settles over her face while inwardly she actually thinks about this with brow furrowing further, a spike of nerves the same she feels whenever she thinks of her father during this whole mess slithers in. "I would try."

Like she is with her dad and like she's now promised to Huruma she would, whatever that might mean in the moment who was to say? "And if that many people were gunning for your head?" Luce doesn't finish and just shakes her head. It's an impossible situation of that she can empathize. The notion of Huruma and Adam's love for each other gives Lucille pause. She at first wants to roll her eyes because Adam but she remembers the memories of him just being a person, being in love. A wave of sadness washes over her instead of repulsion mostly because of what that meant for where Huruma was standing.

"It's not greedy to love both of them," Lucille steps forward and places a hand on Huruma's arm. "But both may not survive. And… If they don't show you the love you deserve…" Though both men seemed to have the cockroach analogy way down in that it was hard to kill them it proved. In the pit of her stomach is where the last glimmer of hope dwells. "Sometimes you have to protect yourself. And your heart."

Huruma sees through Lucille's cooled demeanor from start to finish, neither of them able to completely hide from the other.

'Try' means much more than the three letters which make it up. Huruma's jaw squares in silent reply, her gaze half-focused while she studies the hop-skip of Lucille's emotions. Neither of them are really angry with the other, they're angry at everything else; at least now Lucille can see why with more accuracy- - and why this isn't the easiest path for her to have taken. It could all have been so much different. It could really have been that place where Lucille has to stare her down.

The touch to her arm causes a twitch to run to her fingertips, a tiny jolt back to the shell on the outside of the mind she'd absorbed herself into. Huruma hangs her head faintly, eyes shadowed and mouth tight. She's allowed her selfish thoughts. Even Lucille seems to agree. Greed isn't really the sin- - the sin is what happens when you don't acknowledge it.

Huruma knows she can do that, in the very least.

"If this is what happens- -" Huruma's lip curls, "Maybe this is the reality of what I deserve. The world around me crashing down in flames."

Drawing Huruma into a hug as she shakes her head, "No," Perhaps it is a glaring bias on her behalf but she doesn't care. Huruma is her family.

"You did what you needed. To be forgiven, to move forward. To do right." Lucille lays her head on the taller woman's shoulder and embraces her tight. Regardless of those facts there also remains a simple truth that resonates through the younger woman. "We will pick up any pieces, Onderwyser," Using the old nickname with a wave of emotion going through her.

"I'm sorry this had to happen," This way, for Huruma for all of them. It had already been clear that nobody would be left unscathed by these events but it was becoming more and more clear just how deep the wounds would be when this was all over. "But maybe the both of them are heading for a reckoning," For their sins, for the lives they upturned. Even if there was memory manipulation, loss of family, loss of life.

"And we're just caught up in the middle."

Even though she could convince herself that Lucille wasn't telling the truth, she'd know it wasn't right; the arms around her are as familiar as her own, and Huruma hesitates before nervously returning the gesture, still a bit stiff. That weight on her shoulder is answered in silence- - Huruma's grasp firms, her cheek against the curve of Lucille's head.

"I wish it wasn't meant to be- -" A breath moves out, small and frustrated. "- - a reckoning." On the younger woman's side, she can feel the bump in chest both physically and with her sixth sense. It's going to be like this for a while- - that distressed thrumming in Huruma's head and body. More than can be said. "It seems more and more like there's no middle at all, and it makes me that much more angry. Because there is always another way- - even if you think you're doing right- -" That anger bubbles in her, less of a rage, a simmering frustration.

As they hug Lucille wishes she could wipe emotional pain away as easily as the physical. The younger woman is silent for a time, listening to Huruma's words and her heart. "Sometimes… we don't see the other way until after the fact and it's meant as a lesson, for the future." They were all constantly growing as human beings. Light blue eyes search Huruma's pale ones as she speaks and holds onto the taller woman's shoulders.

"What choice you make, the moves you decide to indulge, the lives you save. That what we focus on," No matter how hard of a choice it is.

There's another pause before she adds, "I support you. Even if you can't. Even if I can't." Do what needs to be done. Avi's words ring loudly again for the Ryans woman.

Who's going to pull the trigger first?

Huruma's hands briefly rest on Lucille's arms, thumbs giving a gentle pressure before moving away. The weight of the young woman's hands is grounding enough, for now; she meets those blue eyes, familiar in a dozen ways.

"We'll… figure this out." Huruma breathes in, and out, brow knit on her forehead and mouth tight in a troubled expression. Together, if they have to. "I promise you that much. We'll figure it out.

"I promise,"

Lucille stops herself and thinks. Could she promise not to run? Her usual way of dealing with too much stress? In an instant she feels like that young girl again, mad at her father and the world. Unsatisfied and vying for attention, no. Not this time, there's a quiet promise to herself before. A vow to be true and to not indulge old, destructive habits.

"I promise to be there. No matter what." There's a faint, sad smile that crosses her lips and a sip of sadness washes over her emotional plate. "Together." She affirms.

Family stuck together.

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