Grafting People Not Plants


delia_icon.gif ryans_icon.gif

Scene Title Grafting People Not Plants
Synopsis After finding out about her father's failed retirement, Delia shares a bit of information.
Date February 21, 2019

Benjamin's Home

A little break is exactly what Delia needs today. Maybe a long break. She didn't tell Nick or Aster where she was going, just that she was taking the dog for a walk. Halfway to her father's house, little Nibs decided that he just couldn't anymore, so the redhead has been packing her loveable hound the rest of the way. He's getting a little big for it though.

She's exhausted by the time she reaches Benjamin's front door and if by some magical happenstance, the dog has caught his second wind. He's also caught scent of Ruma and is braying like Delia's torturing him by not letting him off leash.

Ding dong

Delia's not impatient, she doesn't ring more than once… anymore. While she waits for Ben, she follows behind Nibs, letting him sniff all the scents and play with all the snow.

Delia doesn’t have to wait long to hear the sound of locks turning and the door opens a little. Normally this would be when Ruma the rather large Maine Coon cat trots out to say hello… However, the large feline stops dead in her tracks at the sight of the dog. The long haired tail puffs and her back slowly comes up and Ben can hear the low growl of uncertainty.

However, Benjamin Ryans isn’t paying attention to the cat. His attention is on his daughter, “Delia,” his rumbling voice full of fatherly affection. She’ll notice something different right away… he’s actually groomed. His hair isn’t just a bit too long and there is no shadow along his jaw. Who knows the reasoning, but it could be anything.

Ben opens the door a little wider, to allow Delia to enter, picking up the cat who gives a surprised hissing spit, before settling into his his arms, eyes still sharply focused on that yappy thing.

“Hi dad,” her jovial greeting hasn’t been commonplace as of late. Whatever dreams she’s let him in on have been as turbulent as the waters of a category four hurricane. She looks tired, not just from the long walk from her edge of Elmhurst. “I needed a sane person to talk to,” she adds with a crooked grin, “you’re the only person in my lie that qualifies right now.”

She leads the struggling puppy in, with Ruma safely in Ben’s arms, he’s lost interest in the cat and is busily snuffling around carpets. She watches him for a hot minute, not trusting his unpredictable puppy bladder, before she waggles her eyebrows. “You’re looking sharp, got a hot date?”

The cat is unceremoniously dropped on the top of the couch where she hunkers down with a soft growl of displeasure at that thing in her home. Her territory. Whiskers and ears forward as she watches it sniff about, Ruma’s own nose going.

Free of the giant cat, he shuts the door and offers his little girl a hug. “No date,” Ryans comments blandly, giving her a ‘really?’ look. She should know him better. “I have a job. A temporary one, anyhow.” He motions her to have a seat and get comfortable. “I was approached by SESA to help head a task force.”

Delia’s mouth gapes open and then closes again into an unhappy line. “Dad…” she admonishes, without sounding harsh. “Didn’t they get enough out of you all of the years you worked there?” She knows better, he knows that she knows better. But still. “Please tell me that you’ll be at a desk and that they’re just using you for your brainmeats and not your brawn.”

The tone in her voice, she doesn’t need to say it all out loud. You just got better, damnit.

But she knows better. Her dad isn’t the kind of guy that takes to retirement and he hasn’t been. Without something to keep him busy, something meaningful, he can’t be happy. “It won’t be dangerous, will it?”

“Delli-belly,” Not a nickname her father uses often, but Benjamin looks amused by her concern. He gently grips her shoulder and gives her a gentle smile. “This isn’t the Company, relax.”

Of course, Ryans has never taken retirement well, always getting drug back in like a moth to the flame. “I’m mostly consulting, but… can’t rule out field work. It’s always been where I am strongest.” As for danger… “And yes, there will probably will be danger. We’re hunting Adam Monroe.” The name a familiar one. “They feel since I was Company I’d understand him better and have better insight into how best to stop him.”

At least her father didn’t hide the truth.

“Now go on. Take a load off,” Ben lets her go and asks, “Would you like something to drink?”

He can see the sudden terror on Delia’s face the moment the two syllables A-dam are spoken. It’s not many things in her adult life that can earn that level of fear, but she’s not dropping to the floor in a sudden fit of narcolepsy. Bonus for Ben.

“Y-yeah,” she answers, the hesitation in her voice a weak disguise for the real emotion that’s painted across her features. “Something really really strong.” She makes her way into the kitchen and takes a seat at one of the breakfast stools there.
“Dad, if you’re looking for Adam.. I think I have some stuff that you need to know.”

That gets Ben’s attention.

Her father watches her for a long moment, before finally following. There is a touch of alarm at her reaction and the words to follow. “Really?” he asks curiously, reaching into one of the upper cabinets for his bottle of Whiskey. It is set on the counter and pushed towards her, before a pair of glasses are set on the counter. He has a feeling he’ll need the drink, too. Though he doesn't pour. He lets her do that, she had two working hands.

Leaning on the counter, he studies her. Watches her. Whatever she has for him isn’t good. “You have information about Adam?” This fact actually surprises Benjamin.

The cap is pulled off the bottle and two very liberal glasses are poured. Two fingers? No way.. four or five is what she needs. "Yeah…" Delia murmurs, her chest so tight and heavy that she almost feels like she's being crushed. "It was a while back…"

Taking a large gulp, she winces and shudders as it burns down her throat. She's not much of a drinker, her father knows that much. Hard liquor isn't where she gets her kicks. "Eve and I," she begins the story, "we went looking for him. I can't remember why she needed him but it was important for some reason. I got trapped, I couldn't control it like I normally do. It was like… like with her" Njorun "but worse. At least I'm as strong as she is but him, I think I barely got out with my life."

Between the amount of liquor she pours to her mention of Eve, Benjamin’s brows lift pretty high. It’s not like her father to show emotions so easily. However, just that little bit of information told him a lot. What she did was insanely crazy.

Yeah… he needs a drink.

Dragging his glass close to him, her father take in the information. A deep drink is taken from his own glass. “Went to find him on purpose?” He isn’t happy about it, but it isn’t like he has much of a say. Delia is an adult after all. One thing in everything she say sticks… “He trapped you?” Brows fall into a deep furrow of thought. “He should be able to do that on his own. People with your ability are often weak to the stronger mental ones, like telepathy. Did he have help?” This was particularly important.

"Eve said she needed to see inside his head," Delia says after another sip from her glass. She knows that look her father is giving her. She was reckless, she knows it, but it's over. "So we went looking and found him in Germany during the second world war, I think. Dreams can be different."

Shivering, she takes another sip, this time without the face and the shudder as it stings all the way down. She's getting used to it. "There's stuff that happened dad. Things that I can't unsee.. and it's not the funny kind of unsee like Mr. Chow from the Hangover."

“Adam has lived a rather long life,” Benjamin confirms with a small nod of his head. “It dream of a place like Germany wouldn’t be out of character.” At least n the old man’s mind. “I ever tell you about him having my back in Vietnam? I was just a kid back then…” Little does he know… she knows.

There is a part of him that wants to avoid making her talk about the trauma she endured. However… Would it be information he can use? There was only way to know. “What sort of things?” her father asks after a moment, his voice a quiet rumble, prompting her to continue.

“Was he there when Brad and I went back to save you?” They’ve never talked about it, as far as Delia was aware, Benjamin put it together while she was growing into her adult self. Time travel creates loopy weird messes that just get hard to lay out in the open. The fact that Adam Monroe, the man from one of her many nightmares, saved her father’s bacon.. Well… that’s news.

“He was supposed to present a project he was working on to Colonel Volken and Herr Brumm. I don’t know if it was Wolves of Valhalla Volken but it was definitely the same last name.” Delia pivots the glas in her hand, swirling the amber liquid inside around the walls of the glass, watching the thin coats she applies slide away back to the bottom of the glass. “There were two files, one was project Heisenberg and the other was project Hydra.”

The mention of her and Bradley going back in time, slowly brings up the memories. He was only a kid really. Too young for what he endured in that time. “Maybe,” he says, not really certain of the event. He lets it drop though in favor of the discussion of the man’s dream.

“From what I know of Volken, it probably was him,” Ryans offers quietly. “Adam worked for him for a time, so that made sense.” Finger tap on the counter top as he thinks rolling the file names over in his head. They sounded familiar, but it had been nearly ten years since he read any of those files. “I’ll have to ask around for those files. Richard might know something about them.” Lord knows the man has his ways.

“There’s more dad,” Delia says, interrupting the thought of going to Richard. At least for the moment. “After I touched the file, Eve and I became projects Heisenberg and Hydra. I can’t remember which was which, but I was grafted with an extra leg.” She has no idea what Eve looked like, she’s sure that her body host was a concentration camp detainee.

“The project was to create a mental link between the two so strong that whatever happened to one, the other would experience the same thing.” She takes another large gulp of her drink, draining it dry. She doesn’t pour another one. “Adam was demonstrating it by sulphur gassing Eve, to prove that I would die too. If that’s what he was doing in real life, dad… I think he was going to bring it to the Allies. He was talking to someone he called Carp about defecting.”

There is a soft grunt at his daughters words. “It was a dream,” he points out. His daughter doesn’t work in memories. That was a telepath’s forte. “It might have been exaggerated or warped.” Realizing it sounded like he might be defending Adam, brows furrow and he shakes his head. “Still horrible to think about and I would not be surprised at him working either side. The man would do what it took to keep himself safe and well compensated. He’d have agreed to head projects so that he wasn’t the project himself.”

Though thinking about who they were in another world… Ryans could sympathize. “Feels like something is missing.” Maybe wishful thinking on his part. “Good to know some of what he is capable.” He was an evil man at times, but… some things go beyond that. Thinking on that, the rest of his whiskey is downed and the glass clinks against the tile surface of the breakfast bar.

“Yes.” There’s no disagreement, it was a dream. “I guess you’re right.”

Except that it was too vivid, the element of truth had to be in the files if not the trap itself. But she doesn’t argue. “I guess I don’t have anything for you after all, sorry.” Sighing, she slips off the stool and whistles for the puppy, who just might be bothering Ruma in the living room.

“Have you heard from Lu lately?” A switch of topic as she clips the leash to the dog seems like a better note to end the visit on. At least a deflection from her own foible of spilling dream details. “I haven’t for a little while and just wanted to make sure she’s doing okay.”

He knows his daughter and knows that type of sigh. Ryans lets out a low curse under his breath and turns there where his daughter is hooking the dog again. “Delia,” he starts and then stops. How does he say it without making it worse. “I wasn’t saying that you didn’t have anything for me…. Look… “ Pushing away from where he is leaning on the counter, Ben approaches his youngest to rest a hand on her shoulder. “With any investigation, it is expected that someone like me look at something from all angles and takes a more neutral position.” His voice is soft as he tries to explain it all to his daughter. “At least until the evidence is clearly pointing a particular direction.”

Letting his hand slide off her shoulder and lightly grip her arm he continues with what he sees as a teaching moment. “I’ve taught my agents in the past not to dismiss anything, but always hold back saying anything is definitive proof. Any information on that dream is important, but I also have to look at facts, one being is dreams can be more or less than the actual event. That isn’t to say that the event didn’t happen, that dream possibly proves it, but the details might not be what they should be.” such as…”He might have seen himself as important in that moment. Leading the project in his mind, but in the real incident he was nothing by a peon jumping through hoops.”

Delia probably hasn’t heard her father talk this much in a long time. But, he wanted her to understand that his comment wasn’t what she thought.

"Yeah, okay." There are so many things that Delia has failed to divulge to Benjamin over the years, the exact nature of her ability being one of them. Every dreamwalker is different, it seems. "I'm pretty sure that was based on something real. It may not have happened in the order that it did, but you can ask Eve about it, she was there."

"Heisenberg and Hydra, they're real." The dreamwalker insists. "They were using them to make people that could experience what is happening to the other without being in the same location. Death was the example but what if they get so far that they're cloning him? He could be everywhere."

Ryans head slowly nods to her words, listening intently. Though the action quickly ceases as she mentions cloning Adam. She has no idea how right she is or that it was already happening. “I believe you and the projects do sound familiar. I’ll look into them,” he promises. Who knows what secrets might be useful for the team.

Letting go of his daughter’s arm, Ben moves back to fill his glass again. After downing a mouthful, feeling the way it burns going down, Ryan’s asks his youngest, “You don’t plan on going back into his dreams do you?” His doesn’t look at her when asks, so he doesn’t have to see the telltale signs if she isn’t telling him the truth. Sometimes, he just needs to not know.

Delia is staring right at him though, she doesn't need to lie or even bend the truth a little. "No, I'm not planning on it," which isn't a lie. If she can help it, she won't but there's a caveat. "If you need me to, I will. I'll take you." So he knows she's not up to anything or he can talk to Adam if he needs. The puppy strains at his leash. Not wanting to be tethered to his owner, curious about Ruma on the sofa, but too well mannered to do anything but tug a little. Looking down, she gives a quick tug of her own, a signal Nibs immediately heeds and flops down with a long sigh of his own.

"I know you'll say no and try to keep me out and that's okay," she says, the tone in her voice well meaning. "I just want you to know, if you need my help I'll be there. I'm a lot more useful now than you give me credit for."

Ryans head snaps around to look at her. One could almost imagine invisible hackles being raised at such an accusation; but also the hurt that comes from that sting to his character. Ryans still manages to bite back any response. Instead of swatting at his little red-headed cub, he takes a deep breath in through his nose and turns back to the glass in his hand.

“Good,” her father finally says, voiced strained. Also, not giving an indication if he meant her not going back or her help. It could be both. “I’ll call you if I need anything else on that subject.” A drink is taken, before he adds with a glance her way, “I promise.”

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