delilah_icon.gif elaine_icon.gif past-frady_icon.gif matthew2_icon.gif odette2_icon.gif tom_icon.gif walter_icon.gif

Scene Title Conquer
Synopsis Wayward travelers from another time find themselves in significant peril in Roswell.
Date July 10, 1947

The creak and groan of an old ship’s hull joins the howl of the wind battering down outside. Within the confines of a ship’s below-decks area, the noise is muted enough.

Oil lanterns hang from hooks in the ceiling, shedding flickering firelight across a vagabond-aesthetic bedroom. A Persian rug is spread out across the floor, colorful tapestries hanging from the walls to hide the rust streaks on white. Candles are set on low tables, flickering flame burning softly in the night.

Laid out on a bed of stacked mattresses and many heavy blankets, a red haired man wearing a peculiar gold necklace has slept for nearly fourteen hours. Outside, thunder rumbles, and his eyes flick back and forth beneath his heavy eyelids.

Outside of the room the audible thump of a staff can be heard as a figure in a dark robe and large, black farmer's hat from Asia makes its way slowly along the hall as the ship bobs up and down on the water. A wrinkled pale hand with blue veins popping out grips a tall ebony staff that the figure clearly a woman using it as support. Stopping at the door, the woman tilts her head, face hidden by the brim of her hat and wine colored lips spread open in a ghost of a smile as she rapts sharply on the door before twisting the knob and allowing herself in.

There's a grunt as she spies the man laying there on the bed, sleep is a luxury and one he's been afforded for this long. Now it's story time.

Reaching within her robe the woman with grizzled white gray hair coming out from under the hat pulls out a tiny vial of a dark yellow liquid and inching forward to hunch over she uncorks it and waves it under his nostrils twice, "Up and at em Young Fox." Her rasp tinged with age and emotion at the young shooting star as she had come to think of him.

Exhaling a ragged gasp, Walter Trafford jolts

Hangar 3
Walker Air Force Base
Roswell, New Mexico

4:17 am
July 10th


up from sleep.

Wake up.” Someone whispers in the dark. It is not the cramped confines of a boat but the cavernous expanse of Hangar 3 somewhere in the middle of Nevada. Walter awakens not to find his mother waking him up, but the broad-shouldered and lantern-jawed countenance of that federal agent, Howard Frady.

Nearby, Delilah, Elaine, and Tom are already awake. Matthew and Odette, too, are slowly rising up from their beds and disorientedly looking around. “I need everybody up,” Frady hisses, looking over his shoulder to the dark and distant corners of the hangar, past the rows of cots. “We don’t have much time.”

“Mommy?” Odette asks as she sits up, looking groggy and sleepy, and still hugging the stuffed pig against her body as she had been all through the sleep. The pig had faced outward as if watching. But it hadn’t been able to warn her of the problem as tiredly tries to move. Her young body isn’t quite ready to jump out of bed immediately, but she’s at least not curling back up and falling asleep.

Even if she looks like she would like to. She looks toward her mommy and the other adults, the ones who aren’t strangers. Tom, despite being a stranger once, was no longer considered one. He was now a friend, so she looked toward him just as quickly as she did towards Delilah.

Though not as quickly as she looked to her mom.

He feels his eyes pop open first, less than the jolt that some lizard part of him was expecting; still, the sting of fumes lingers in his nose, and the cavern of the hangar, for a moment, retains that warble of seawater.

These nights used to scare him more than they do now.

Now, he typically only stirs when the stranger dreams come- - he would now too, if it weren't for the man in his peripheral vision, deep-voiced and agitated. A hand reaches absently up to his collar, fingers finding nothing as he sits up, scowling openly up to the agent before looking to his family, drawn by Odette's tiny voice. Walter scrubs his fingers against his scalp, expression shifting from angry to troubled the more he is able to take in as he slides off of the cot.

"Quiet, kids." Delilah advises this just as Walter opens his mouth to say something, her expression atypically grim. She hadn't been in a very deep sleep, unsurprisingly.

There's something in the situation that snaps Elaine to attention. She's done this before, waking up in the middle of the night, being told there's little time. When she sits up, there's less grogginess and more sharpness, her eyes going towards the speaker, though it's Odette she answers. "Don't worry, I'm here, we're sticking together," she notes. "We're staying together." It's a firm reassurement to her daughter, but she's looking at Frady while she says it.

"Where are we going?"

It's not a question of her that they're leaving. They're doing something and at this early in the morning, it's not something that their lovely hosts are all approving of. Her eyes stay locked on Frady, watching for an indication of if their early wakeup was a good thing or a bad thing for them.

“I don’t know,” Frady says with a tension in his voice that implies he hadn’t really thought past this moment. Tom shoots Elaine a worried look, then Frady. “I just—I need to get you all out of here. I know you—I know you don’t have any reason to trust me. I know. I know. But you gotta.”

Frady rises from his crouch though still stands hunched over. He looks around, watching Matthew and Walter gather and then looks over to Odette for a moment. “They…” He looks up to Delilah and then Elaine. “They’re keeping people here. Prisoners. They think they’re communist infiltrators, but I just—I can’t do this. I can’t do this to kids.” He glances down to Odette again, then back to Elaine.

“I’ve got a car on the other side of the base, I can—” Frady starts talking himself through his own plan, “I can drive you out as far as my gas tank’ll take me. Anywhere’s better than here. You’re not safe.

Odette tilts her head to the side as she looks up at Frady. She doesn’t know him, but she knows his type. Some part of him reminds her of— well— her other daddy. He had seemed gruff and scary at first, but as soon as a child was involved, daddy had changed a lot.

“I think we can trust you,” she says after a moment, pulling the pig close. She trusted the other man too, the one who had been so nice to her stuffed raccoon— who sadly was not in the room with her.

She was still receiving surgery. She looks toward the door and then sighs. “Magistra Mýval would tell us to go ahead.” She knows this, but she sounds sad anyway. Without waiting any longer, she goes to her mommy and holds up her hand, because yes, they were going together. A buddy system.

He doesn't know, because of course not. Delilah is intimately familiar with this type of person as well, though certainly in a different capacity than Odette. The ones that act of goodness even if they have no idea what they're doing, despite there being a clear and alarming sense of danger.

Dee lifts a hand to the agent, a placating gesture in the moment, her expression troubled but strained to remain only troubled. In reality her chest feels as if it is going to invert itself from the tension wound inside. It's okay, just focus.

"I think I know exactly what you're getting at," Delilah starts, glancing to the boys and watching Walter buddy up against Matthew in a somewhat defensive posture. "And thank you." As much as he is petrified, Delilah is that much determined not to let this chance slip away. She faces Frady, mouth flattening and jaw tight. "Forget your car. Where can we find something else with wheels? How much time do we have?"

Elaine squeezes her daughter's hand gently, shooting a small smile towards the small redhead. "I'm sure the Magistra would understand," she offers as a way of apology. The boys are offered a small reassuring smile as well, especially the way it seems they're clustering together. Her attention turns fully back to Frady, a glance given in Delilah's direction to make sure that they're all on the same page.

"They'd tie your car to you, I hate the idea of you getting in trouble over us. She's right, if there's something else we can use…" She trails off, chewing on her bottom lip as she tries to assess their situation.

Frady’s eyes track side to side and he shakes his head, straightening up slowly. “I don’t know,” is his answer to all the questions. “They’ve got a few more people locked up in the hospital, they came here before you did.” That revelation hits like a slap to the face. “If we go through Medical we—maybe we could steal a Jeep on the other side, come out the southwest parking lot.” He says, talking himself through the process.

“We’ve gotta go now, I don’t know when they’re going to come for you but—but I doubt they’re gonna offer breakfast first.” Frady scrubs a hand over his mouth and looks around with wide, wild eyes as he surveys the hangar. “Which—way is the medical wing? The one they took you to yesterday?” Clearly he doesn’t know the base very well.

“You’re right, she will,” Odette says in response to her mommy because the raccoon would understand. No one knew that better than Odette. It was still sad. She hoped that the Magistra would be safe and would find someone to look after as she had looked after her the last few years. “The medical wing is where they took us before!” she says, obviously, before she pulls on her mom’s arm and gestures in that direction with the stuffed pig. “It’s this way. Let’s go.”

The little girl was ready to steal a car and escape.

Other people? As much as hearing this is unsurprising, it also takes no uncertain determination for Delilah to not immediately want to help them too. There's nothing they can do from here.

"Right, that way." She brings herself back to the moment as Odette confirms the direction. "Stay together, boys, okay?" Dee figures she needs not say it, yet she does regardless as she looks back to the pair, gesturing for them to stay close to her as well.

"It's a better idea than nothing." It's only a small upgrade from 'flee'. "They probably have some kind of medical wagon on base if not a jeep." Delilah steps forward whether or not Frady chooses to fall in line; her question for him is alarmingly cool-headed. "Do you have a gun on you?"

Elaine catches Delilah's gaze momentarily at the mention of people locked in the hospital, but she too seems to struggle with the concept of not being able to help. When she refocuses again, she lets Odette tug her by the arm in the direction of the medical wing and starts off in that direction. It'll be a walk and talk. "If you don't know what you're doing, we'll just have to make it up as we go." By her tone, it's clear that this isn't the first time she's had to fly by the seat of her pants.

She glances at Dee. "You think being armed would really help? I mean, I'd feel safer, but I'm not sure if they'd fire at us or decide we're weak women and children." She nods in Tom's direction. "No offense."

“They don’t,” is Frady’s nervous response, which is also when he pulls back his jacket and reveals an under-arm holster for a small, black revolver. He sets out after Odette in the lead, looking warily over his shoulder as he does.

“What do you mean?” Matthew demands more of an answer than that. “What—do they really think we’re Communists? What’re we gonna do, give them universal healthca—”

“They think you’re Specials.” Frady says abruptly, stepping in front of Odette before she gets to the door. He gives her a adults first look, then unholsters his sidearm and gently pushes the door open into a mostly unlit hallway. He lowers his voice as he continues to explain. “People who can like, move things with their mind or… or turn invisible. Real science fiction stuff.”

“That’s crazy w—we’re uh, we’re not—” Tom starts to stammer, but Frady isn’t playing dumb.

And they think you’re from the future.” Frady adds, looking back over his shoulder at them all with a deadpan expression. “All I see are some folks with a run of bad luck, and I’d like to make sure it doesn’t get any worse.”

“Science fiction is just theories that haven’t been thoroughly tested yet,” Odette says, totally like a little girl in a dress who should still be in elementary school who also happens to be carrying around a stuffed pig. “And my mommy definitely says I’m special and there shouldn’t be anything wrong with that. I’m sure you’re special too, sir,” she says with a nod as if she doesn’t understand what this particular meaning of special happens to be.

In this case, she probably doesn’t. Isn’t every child special in her mother’s eyes? “I know how to kick people if they’re mean to me, so don’t worry. Daddy’s girlfriend taught me.”

Not Magnes, the other daddy. She and her little feet are ready if needed.

Being armed may or may not help- - but it would also certainly make her feel better. As it stands, it's going to have to be this elder Frady who does that particular job. Delilah stifles a snort at Matthew's words, staying close to the boys. She takes care as they open out to the corridor beyond, taking a quick stock by looking past the corners and back to the agent. As much as being frank could be a benefit… she won't confirm nor deny.

"Thanks." Delilah will thank him more readily when they get out. The space ahead of the hallway to medical is familiar, thankfully, and so when she steps out to start the trek along the wall, there is no small measure of confidence on where she's headed.

Elaine almost laughs at Matthew's comment, but the situation is serious enough that she keeps a straight face with only the slightest quirk of a smile on her lips before the focus is all back where it needs to be. "I certainly can't turn invisible," she tells Frady. "So I don't think they really have anything to worry about me." She declines to comment on the suggestion of them being from the future. Lies become more difficult the more you have to spin them and that's not a topic she's ready to just speak on.

As Odette speaks, the smile does manage to crack and she squeezes her daughter's hand. "Yes, of course. Everyone is special in their own way," she tells Odette. After all, Specials aren't a term the average person would know in the first place. "We've certainly had a streak of bad luck, I can tell you that. Your help is appreciated. The children being safe is my top priority and that doesn't appear to be here."

At the mention of there being no real medical vehicle, her gaze moves over to Frady again. "Alright, we're going to improvise. You might not know this place but at least you've seen more of it. We head out from here, when we get outside, where do we go? Do you know how far we are from a city where we might be able to blend into a crowd?" Even if Frady doesn't know, keeping him talking and thinking might make him less nervous.

Whatever else lives behind the bewildered look Frady gives Odette is left up to the imagination as he leads the small group into the darkened hallway. Frady moves slow and quiet, creeping down the tile floor with his gun out ahead of him, looking for all his worth like he hopes he never has to pull the trigger.

Frady knows some of where he’s going at least, taking a right down a hallway and circling around to the back side of the exam rooms where the others had been the day before. Here there are metal doors with view slits cut in them. Frady approaches them one by one, checking inside. After the third door he stops and tries to open it, only to find it locked.

Shit.” Frady hisses. “Shit I don’t have keys.”

“Is someone there?” A quavering man’s voice rises from beyond the door. “Hello?”

In another situation, Odette might immediately speak up and try to disarm whoever was on the other side of the door with words, but as soon as they speak, she does the opposite of what she might have done in any other situation. She ducks behind her mother as if to hide. The little girl doesn’t peek around the tall redhead— but the stuffed pig is held out as if those beady little eyes could see something for her.

It’s like hide and seek, as far as she’s concerned— only now it’s ‘be quiet and try to get away’ instead of hide and seek. Because hiding wasn’t really an option.

The nature of doors with the barest of windows to the outside isn't unfamiliar to Delilah; she's seen enough containment and confinement in her life to recognize a holding cell of some kind. That Frady checks them only backs up her assumption that they've probably held people. His frustration isn't lost on her when he finds the door locked up; she gives the door frame a lookover just as someone calls out quietly from inside.

It's not the words that get her, exactly. Sure, they aren't hostile ones, but- - It's the warble of something uncertain in the increasingly familiar voice behind the door which has her going shoulder to shoulder with Frady to look inside, one hand up to shield her sight, voice at a small hiss of confusion.

"No fucking way- -" Move, please, would you kindly. Delilah is incredulous as she seeks some confirmation, because- - what even- - "Thomas?"

Elaine places one hand gently on Odette's head as she hides, peering in the direction of the door and the voice beyond it. She's expecting there to be trouble, but what she doesn't expect is the way the other redheaded mother reacts. Time travel is a hell of a thing, but her recognizing someone seems like an unlikely circumstance.

Which means they're likely in another unlikely circumstance. She glances in Delilah's direction, then down the hall. "If there's someone else we need to get out of here, we need to find keys or a way to break down the door." After all, it doesn't sound like Delilah wants to kill whomever is in there. She's been around Dee enough to know what that sounds like.

Through the viewing slat, Delilah sees a familiar pair of sad eyes looking back at her from across the impossible distance of history.


“Miss Delilah,” Nowak says with both confusion and delight. “How—”

“You know this guy?” Frady suddenly interjects, bewilderment in his wide eyes. He hesitates, then looks back at Nowak. “No, you know what—nevermind. It’d probably cook my fucking noodle anyway. Okay so, yeah, we gotta get him out of there.”

“I could try uh,” Nowak falters, “to fold the space? But I am—I am scared to.”

Frady looks at Nowak, then Delilah, and back again with a what the fuck is he talking about look on his face.

That’s right about when Matthew, stepping away from Walter, looks up at Nowak through the viewing slat. “Are you sure it’s locked from the outside?” Matthew asks, grabbing the door handle. The darkened lights overhead suddenly come on and flicker for a moment, before Matthew just… turns the handle and lets the door open to the hall.

“See?” Matthew says with a smile. “Wasn’t locked!”

Frady stares vacantly at Matthew. He knows it was locked. There’s a haunted look in Frady’s eyes, one that slowly passes as he turns to look at the rows of cells. “I think there’s one more person in here somewhere.”

Oh, a friend! Odette doesn’t recognize the man, but since Delilah does, he immediately gets placed in the ‘friend’ category and the little girl stops hiding behind her mom. When Matthew opens the door, she squeals a little in delight. “That’s great! Hertog Vos isn’t with me, or else I’d have my tools, so it’s a good thing it was unlocked.”

Her tools?

Elaine knew that Hertog Vos was her stuffed fox and that the fox was who the school kept telling her she could no longer bring to class because “she kept cursing” when she did. And he was also a thief, apparently. Just like a fox, right? Walter probably would have liked him.

“We should get out of here quickly though before we run into not-friends.” Cause there’s a lot of not-friends in this place. Like that scary doctor who wasn’t a medical doctor.

"I don't know how you're here but damn, I'm happy to see you." Delilah is glad that Frady doesn't want answers right now because frankly- - she's not sure she has any. Further dilemma on how to get Nowak out seems readily solved for them thanks to Matthew; space folding not required, just a little bit of… haunting. It still has Dee giving their would-be rescuer a nervous smile as the door pulls wide.

At Matthew's side once again is Walter, leaning past the open door to helpfully grab Nowak's arm. Hellooo.

"We gotta go mister Nowak, like, day before yesterday gotta go- -" Oh no, more children.

Delilah, on the other hand, casts a look to her son and then the other doors in the hall; he gets the herding instinct from his genes. She somehow trusts him with that much as she looks to Frady and ushers him with her to find the other occupant.

"Are you sure there's just one more? And the time- - do you have it? It's still before dawn, right…?"

"You're right," Elaine agrees with Odette. "Not-friends would certainly be a bit of a problem should they run into us." It's said for the sake of agreeing with her daughter but also to vocalize a bit louder the suggestion of men with guns potentially going in their direction. As the door opens, she offers Frady a sheepish smile.

"Looks like we've got friends in all kinds of places I guess," she notes, but his mention of another person being there gets her attention more than anything. "If you could direct us, that would be great. I don't like the idea of leaving anyone in here, especially an innocent of any kind." Perhaps she doesn't know what they might be doing to 'Specials' here, but she's aware of what they're probably doing. With Delilah knowing the first prisoner, she's got a sinking feeling that 'one more person' might not just be someone who belonged here.

“Only one I know of,” Frady says with a side-eye to Nowak. “And we’ve got fifteen minutes before sunup,” he adds, brandishing his wristwatch as proof. In the same moment, Frady moves toward the sound of urgent whispering coming from another cell.

“Okay, found her.” Frady says, then tries the handle. It’s locked. It’s absolutely locked. He frowns, then, looks over at Matthew. Frady doesn’t say anything, but the look he gives says enough for Matthew to start walking over.

“There was—there was—accident,” Nowak says with a fluttering grimace to Delilah. “The Dawn, she explode. Sabotaged. We had—the uh—the uh—baddies on board?” He makes a finger-twitching hand gesture like he’s trying to grab the right words from the air but they just aren’t coming to him.

It’s only then that Nowak really notices Odette and more directly Walter attached to his arm, then awkwardly shifts his focus over to Matthew with a lingering stare. “Why is there…” Nowak looks back to Walter. “Children? Where—how are you here? Is—is this not, back when?

While Nowak grapples with both the incongruity of the situation and his grasp of the English language, Matthew repeats his parlor trick for Frady. Once again all of the lights flicker in the ceiling, and Matthew is able to simply open the door as if it weren’t locked.

The door bursts open and a tall, blonde woman strides out from inside the cell, upper lip curled into a snarl and hands balled into fists. Frady looks startled by her aggression, tensing up and flexing his hand at his revolver. He starts to say something when she lunges forward and grabs him by the wrist and throws Frady up against the wall, disarming him of his gun. Matthew yelps in fright and stumbles backwards, watching as the released detainee puts Frady in a chokehold and puts the gun to his head.

“What the fuck is going on!?” The blonde woman screams.

It’s then that Odette recognizes her… from Providence.


It’s Kara.

“Kara!” Odette exclaims in surprise, before releasing her mom’s hand to rush forward to touch Frady’s arm as if to give him some kind of comfort. a hint of childlike bravery in the motion as she looks up at the tall woman with the gun. “He’s here to help us escape! We didn’t know you were here, too.” She looks excited to see her, apparently not finding the violent response to the situation to be at all out of character for Kara.

Or even scary, really.

“He didn’t like that we were being held and he’s getting us out. We can all go together.” Says a little girl holding a stuffed pig, looking up with big brown eyes that seem to trust her even more than most of the people in this room. Daddy and Eileen trusted Kara a lot, so of course she trusted Kara just as much.

Frady has clearly picked up on Matthew's parlor trick, and the fact he just sort of- - goes with it- - says a lot about character, no less. Delilah has much of her attention on Nowak when they move on, and her expression settles into something deeply concerned. Still, she's past happy to see someone she'd thought had turned into space dust.

"There was an attack on the ground that day… I don't think you would have had any idea it was happening…" But knowing that on board it was the same kind of situation? That's some fire news. "I- - it is." Delilah whispers back to Nowak, her brows knit. "You can ask as many questions as you like once we get free, okay?" She pats a hand against his shoulder reassuringly, glancing back to their other Tom before she hears the sound of the door flying open and Kara following at a rage.

"Matt- -" Delilah breathes out his name only for the tiny girl to slip past and make that two kids to worry about being too close. One hand reaches out to preemptively stop Walter from thinking about chasing after his friend. "'Dette, christ, get back."

What in the world did they piss off to get these punk kids, anyway, How dare they need to raise themselves. As for Kara, she steps a few paces closer, hands up, placating. "Just calm down, would you? Please." Needless to say, none of them look like they really belong here either.

While Kara is a familiar face to Odette, Elaine has no real knowledge of her. So there's a very mixed look on her face when the girl trustingly moves to the now-armed woman's side and talks in a conversational manner. She puts her hands up to show she's unarmed, but she addresses the woman instead of the girl. "We're just trying to escape here, same as you. I don't know exactly what's going on, but I'm pretty sure if we stay here it's not going to be a Sunday picnic." Her tone remains calm, in spite of the fact she's frozen in place so long as Kara's the one armed. She doesn't bother looking anywhere else—someone armed and potentially going to harm them is too much of a priority to check with Delilah for plans.

Matthew backs away from Kara, his hands up in the air and eyes wide. Nowak has a similar reaction, but his eyes are wider, his jaw trembles, and he seems in abject disbelief of her presence. Kara presses the barrel of her gun to the side of Frady’s head, then grabs him by the collar of his jacket and drags him to the side.

Odette sees the look in Kara’s eyes first: confusion. The look pierces through Odette, like a stranger’s eyes. But then the anger and vitriol washes away as if she were taking off a mask. Slowly, Kara unwinds her fingers from Frady’s jacket and looks around the hallway. She looks Delilah up and down, then Elaine. Her brows knit together, further confusion.

Matthew, seeing how Nowak is frozen in fear, starts to edge over to him, then casts a furtive look to Walter followed by a subtle nod in Kara’s direction with a little squint. Matthew can tell something is wrong, but he can’t tell just what.

“Where the fuck are we?” Kara demands, grinding the barrel of Frady’s pistol into his temple. Frady, hands up, addresses her in a mostly level only somewhat quavering tone of voice.

“Just outside Roswell, New Mexico, ma’am.” Frady says with a look to Delilah and Elaine, hands up trying to reassure them as well that this can be defused. “Now, I… understand you’re upset at everyone who was holding you here, and I’m trying to make that right. But if we hang around in this hallway much longer, a lot of men with a lot of guns are gonna’ come through that door and I don’t think any of us are going to like which way they point.”

Kara flicks a look at Frady, then back to the others. She unwinds her fingers from his jacket and shoves him forward, then lowers the gun but doesn’t return it. She looks past Frady, to Nowak, then slides her tongue across the back of her teeth. “Thomas,” she says in tense greeting to him with an open-mouthed smile. Nowak looks down to the ground and says nothing.

“Now that we’re… all nice an’ acquainted,” Frady says with a glance to Delilah, then Kara, “we really should get to the motorpool and out of here before this turns into a real shootout.” He’s still tense, and rightly so as he watches Kara taps the barrel of his stolen revolver against her thigh.

“Which way, Mr. Frady?” Matthew asks, and Frady motions to the door at the end of the hall.

“Motorpool is right outside, we grab a truck and pick a direction.” Frady says, warily eyeing Kara as he starts to back toward the door. “Once I open that door there’s a good chance somebody is gonna see us, so keep your heads down and…” he glances to Kara again, “try not to pick any fights?”

Get back? Odette doesn’t seem to understand the potential danger, or if she does, she doesn’t think Kara would actually hurt her, even if there was something wrong with how she looked. “Is there anyone else here that we need to save?” she asks, instead of hiding from the gun. Guns don’t scare this girl. Only dead Nazi doctors with glowing blue eyes and a feeling she somehow recognizes.

In the end, this was Kara. She would have wanted to help either way, but Odette considered everyone in Providence part of her extended family— Those her daddy trusted. Those Eileen trusted. Even if Kara seemed off, that didn’t mean some part of her wasn’t Kara. And Kara had given her a raggedy stuffed bear who was named Mister Bear.

“And we have another gun now too,” she adds with a smile, looking up at the others because if things went wrong they would have helped now. “She’s really good with them. Way better than me.”

Way better than a kid who would probably fall on her ass with every shot.

“But try to shoot them in the knees if we have to!” she adds holding up the pig as if it was the pig saying it. “We don’t want to break anything.” Like the space-time continuum.

Delilah's fingers curl at her sides as Kara gives them a surveying, her expression otherwise plenty guarded as the gun stays in the hand of their unintended party member. It's fine. This is fine. None of them belong, and until they can take care of that somehow… well, not much else to play in the way of hands.

This also means that the only real consideration that Dee can give Kara on the apparent discomfort she's causing is very limited. Even though she sees the way which Nowak responds to this woman, there's little to do there either. In all, she feels strangely powerless at that moment.

"Yes, honey, I bet she is." One hand alights on Odette's hair as Delilah quietly urges her to stick nearest Elaine. "We'll just have to be careful then, hm? Let's move on, please…" A glance ushers the boys along, to which Walter seems even more uncertain. One thing he is sure of, however, is how both he and Matt seem to pick up on something being very wrong with this weird lady and how she manages to make Thomas smaller with nary a direct comment.

"'S cool, we'll be out in no time." Maybe if he's reassuring like his mother, it'll rub off. Even though there is the disparate part of him that revels in a sea of general unease.

Elaine's eyes scan Delilah for a moment, doing her best to usher Odette with the group. She's hit the point of ignoring the strangeness of the situation and instead allowing herself to focus on the task at hand–they need to get out. The mention of the motorpool and the danger outside has her moving a little more cautiously as she looks at the others. "Alright, so we make a break for it. Someone with a gun please get ready to give cover fire if we need it." With a nod to the door, then her attention to the rest of the group, she takes a deep breath.

"Who goes first?"

Kara doesn’t say anything, she just looks to the door Frady indicated and marches down the hall toward it. As she puts some distance between herself and the other group, Nowak grabs Delilah by the sleeve and winds his trembling fingers into the fabric. He presses close to her, whispering, “She blew up the Dawn.” He says in a fluttering whisper. “She—she tried to kill me. She is Pure Earth. Racist.”

Frady either doesn’t hear or doesn’t have the proper context for whatever Nowak is warbling about, and glowers at Kara’s back as he follows her down the hall toward the door. Matthew, however, remembers the day the Itinerant Dawn exploded and understands exactly what Pure Earth is. He fixes a look at Kara’s back with wide, fearful eyes and reaches out to take Walter’s hand in his own for need of an emotional anchor.

Kara bursts through the rear door of the holding area into the motor pool, where a dozen Jeeps are parked side by side along with several larger trucks with tarp-covered beds. Beyond the vehicles, rows of gleaming steel quonset huts dot the flat concrete airfield. Kara hustles over to the nearest Jeep, climbing up inside and then hunching over to tear out the innards of the ignition to begin hotwiring the vehicle.

Frady stands by the open metal door to the detention block, looking back at the others. “C’mon, hurry, hurry.” He hisses. In that same moment, a sharply-ringing alarm sounds through the whole facility. More alarms ring in the distance. Someone finally noticed they’re missing from the residential ward.

Odette does not hear the accusation, which is probably for the best, as she moves along quickly, pulling the stuffed pig close to her potato sack body. Flinching at the alarms, she hunches her shoulders, letting go of her mommy’s hand long enough to cover one of her ears and press the stuffed pig against the other. Hurry she will do, but it’s so loud. And it brings back memories of things she doesn’t even really remember anymore.

Why does she remember being put into a box?

It doesn't take much for Delilah to tune in to what Nowak has to say, even without him having said it. His nature is, as far as she knows, gentler than what exaggeration requires of people. Her hand clasps over the one dug into her sleeve, long fingers giving the smallest trigger-twitch at the man's chosen revelation.

Seems that everyone has just enough context, as MAtthew's gesture is met with a more genuinely nervous posture from Walter, his own hand freely relinquished without a second thought. If they wait just long enough, maybe they can lose her? Or maybe just- -

"We need her." Delilah's response to Nowak is hushed, somewhat pained, he can see it in her face when she says it; whatever lies there is underlit by the sensation of bile and venom, however, and the next comes with no shortage of the latter. "Until we're out of here."

Which seems to be code for her willingness to handle it. Until they are out of there- - She can't do much more. Especially given the warbles of alarms that seem to tail after them at long last. Delilah lets go of Nowak and all but pries herself from him to push forward and to the jeep where Kara has planted herself, manner rigid as she pulls open the rear hatch for the others to get in.

"Tell me if you need another hand," because there is no pressure, Kara. "Come on, kids."

Alarms aren't good. Alarms are for fugitives and security breaches, both of which they certainly are now. They might not have been prisoners in name, but there's no doubt that leaving was not their choice. Elaine spares a glance towards Matthew and Walter as a quick check, then to Delilah. There's something else going on that she doesn't know about, but there's certainly trust there–Dee's got this.

Seeing Odette's reaction to the alarms, however, has her focusing on the small redhead. She places her hands atop her daughter's, hands firmly pressing to help keep the noise out. It doubles as a way to allow her to steer Odette in the correct direction but it also serves to make sure that she knows she's not alone, to help ground her. Elaine seems aware that it's not just a reaction to loud noises.

The Jeep’s engine whirrs languidly as Kara pumps the jar and sparks wires under the dashboard. “Come on, come on,” she hisses.

Frady climbs into the passenger seat, looking into the open back. “Get in, hurry!” Then he shoots a look down to where Kara placed the gun she stole from him on the driver’s seat. Frady’s hands clench, jaw tenses. He considers the firearm, then looks behind himself as he sees Walter and Matthew climbing into the back of the Jeep.

“Hurry, hurry,” Matthew hisses as he takes Walter’s hand, helping him up into the back seat of the Jeep. He turns wide, frightened eyes past Frady down the concrete drive of the motor pool, past rows of other staller cars to where flashlights shine in the distance. “Oh crap, oh crap!

Heads down kids!” Tom whisper-shouts as he vaults over the open side of the Jeep into the back between Matthew and Walter. He puts a hand at their backs and gingerly pushes them down so they’re not sitting upright, then fires a worried look to Delilah, Elaine, and Odette. “Come on, everybody squeeze together.”

The engine rumbles to life and Kara lets out a whoop of delight as she slaps the steering wheel. At the same time, Frady regrets not taking the gun when he had the chance. “Ruskie! In the back with the others!” He yells at Nowak, who is staring up at the night sky in a moment of internalized panic.

“I—” Nowak blinks and looks down at Frady, “I’m Polish,” he emphasizes, squeezing into the back of the Jeep, crouched on the floor in front of Tom with his eyes now on the same gun Frady had ignored, sitting on the edge of the driver’s seat, for the moment forgotten. As shouts and sirens flood the outside, the distant noises in the dim light of dawn are joined by cacophony of barking dogs.

Nowak starts to reach for the gun and Tom grabs him by the wrist, shaking his head with wide eyes.


No one but Nowak hears it, and Tom doesn’t even realize it wasn’t said aloud. Nowak freezes, then slowly withdraws his hand from the attempted ready.

“We gotta go!” Frady yells as Kara climbs up into the driver’s seat and grabs her gun with her free hand. “Everybody in now!

In a way, this reminds Odette of home. The old home. Things back in Providence could turn chaotic at the drop of a hat, and even worse as they traveled to Providence. She doesn’t seem to mind getting down into the floor against her mom’s legs instead of in an actual seat, that way she can, as instructed, keep her head down and give extra room to all those adults who want seats. She wraps an arm around one of Elaine’s legs, and the other around the stuffed pig in her arms, closing her eyes and waiting for the chaos to end.

Needless to say, everything is a tight fit. Delilah and Elaine have the job of helping to keep heads down, and the kids end up more or less a handful of chicks being muscled underneath. Delilah can't help herself when she looks up and back over her shoulder, hair swiping across her face. She can hear the dogs, and it serves to remind her that they are, in fact, in a place and time where k-9 units were a stock piece of equipment.

Herded down with the others, Walter can only wear his distress on his sleeve; it is clear he is clinging onto whatever sobriety he can manage; he's afraid, but he can't be! Everyone needs him to not be!

Blue eyes are tracking the same thing as Nowak, though Walter makes no such moves to be halted. Instead he just stays fixed on Kara and the weapon, sick in the stomach wondering what comes next. The redheaded boy breaks his watch only long enough to look to Matthew and tightly squeeze his hand. Whatever he knows about his friend, he knows that this cannot be good for him, especially so.

"Quick, are there any rags in this jeep?" Delilah's voice breaks a pointed quiet from her, and she is patting around in the back a moment before instead sliding her shoes off and on again, tugging her socks free and offering zero explanation. "We can't let those dogs have a trail…" And ultimately- - were things less harrowing- - she wouldn't be thinking what she's thinking.

Squeezing together isn't a bad thing, somehow the sensation of the small redhead clinging to her leg is less terrifying and more empowering for Elaine. One hand rests on the top of Odette's head while her eyes keep a careful lookout, crushing herself into the back with the others. "I'm less worried about the dogs and more the guns," she murmurs, but she lets her voice settle into stillness–there's a lot of talking and panicking, none of which she feels she can contribute to in a positive way. So instead, she offers the best of her reassuring smiles, the ones reserved for serious events, to the rest of the children.

Kara slams on the gas and pulls the Jeep out of its parking stall in reverse, slams on the brake and fishtails the front of the vehicle around. Riotous shouts come from the back door of another building on the compound as flashlight-bearing military police come storming out into the motor pool. Shouts ring out in the night as Kara slams on the gas, followed shortly thereafter by gunshots.

The right rear view mirror explodes beside Frady, who ducks and covers his head with both hands. Showering shards of glass land in Delilah’s lap. Matthew shrieks and covers his head, curling up in a tight ball. Nowak, reflexively, tries to position himself between everyone else and the gunfire.

Kara is quick to grab the gun at her side and look over her shoulder, firing blindly back at the MPs. She doesn’t hit them, but they scatter nonetheless. There are cries, screams, and barking dogs as Kara roars through the motorpool and out onto the tarmac between buildings in the compound. She takes a sharp right then slams on the gas again, barreling toward the checkpoint at the entrance to the base.

“Down, down! Get down!” Frady shouts as he twists around in his seat, trying to urge those in the back to squeeze down as far as they can. It’s chaos in the moment. Delilah can feel Walter squeezing beside her. Matthew takes Walter’s hand and the two boys huddle by Delilah and Elaine.

“Oh my god, oh my god,” Tom gasps, looking ahead as two MPs step out of the guard booth. Kara shoots through the windshield, blowing it out and sending more glass showering through the air. One of the MPs drops immediately, collapsing onto his knees and then tipping onto his side. The other, however, raises a rifle and fires repeatedly at the Jeep.

Gunfire cracks, someone screams, but the scream is drawn out so long and so far it feels as though it is stretched across and instant and

Horns blare against the riotous noise of an urban jungle. Several loose pages of a newspaper blow across vehicle-choked asphalt cutting through a street flanked by brick industrial buildings. Several small vans adorned in bright blue paint and carnation yellow flowers blast music out their open windows. Some cheering and shouting youths hang banners out the windows, shouting to other vehicles in traffic.

No one in the traffic jam notices the sudden displacement of rushing air and crashing metal trash cans in the nearby alley. For the small group of delirious, confused people stranded in the alley the change of a cold desert night to a humid summer afternoon is as much a shock as the fact that they are all alive.

There is no sign of Frady or Kara. Nowak rolls onto his side and vomits into a pile of trash bags the moment he has his wits about him. Matthew scrambles away from the mess, holding Walter’s arm as he does. He is surprised by his surroundings, but he is not confused. He realizes what’s happened again.

Tom, slouched up against a brick wall beside Odette and Elaine slowly turns to look down the alley to the flower-painted vans and the banners flying on the vehicles.

One of the banners, unfurled, has the words WOODSTOCK OR BUST painted on it.

“Oh.” Tom says as Nowak continues to vomit nearby.

“Oh boy.”

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