Lighthouse Puppy Pile


brynn_icon.gif caspian_icon.gif lance_icon.gif

Scene Title Lighthouse Puppy Pile
Synopsis Some of the usual suspects are absent, new ones have come to take their place. But sometimes, the puppy pile is the only way to handle trauma.
Date March 19, 2018

Lance's Apartment

Lance hasn’t said a word since whatever happened in the park happened to everyone there. More to the point, maybe he has, but nobodyâs heard it since he hasnât turned his power off since that moment, a silent and overly pale shadow of the usually animated teenager.

He was - at least - able to communicate to Caspian that yes, he would appreciate company-slash-help getting home. Phoenix Heights was a bit of a walk from Yamagato Park, and although he normally has no issues with it… today was a little bit different.

The hood of his hoodie's drawn up over his head as he makes his way up the apartment stairs with Cas to the door with the lighthouse painted on it; shoulders hunched a bit, gaze down, his keys making no sound as he rattles them around with shaky, uncertain fingers to find the right one and open the door.

Yamagato Park was supposed to be a safe place.

Memories of the past, long held back, weren't supposed to appear in the middle of a New York spring day, but it did. Intense memories. Darkness, horror, decisions made that can't be taken back. It seems everyone encountered a dark specter in the middle of the fields.

Neither of them spoke during the trip home, the silence field put off by Lance silencing any attempts at things like that, and him being the only vehicle on the streets at this late hour meant that he was able to get from A to B without too much trouble. He doesn't ask what happened - he was there, after all. He doesn't press on what was seen. He doesn't pry about the darkness that was revealed in bright technicolor. He does what he wishes someone would do for him - help him get out of the problem and then, perhaps, talk it out when things have calmed down a little.

Lance is half helped, half carried up the stairs to the lighthouse-scrawled apartment, the door pushed open once it's unlocked, the pair entering in silence. "It's okay, buddy." Caspian murmurs quietly, a strong hand on Lance's shoulder. "Whatever happened, we'll get through it. We'll figure it out."

Brynn's in the apartment, making … is that … never mind. No one wants to know what that is on the counter. When the door opens, her glance is idle — it should be Lance or Joe. it takes her less than a split second I realize it's BAD.

Racing around the counter with her hands flying — obviously demanding explanations, though the flurry is too fast for anyone but those fluent to follow — Brynn drops to her knees in front of Lance as Caspian helps him sit on the battered couch. Immediately she slows down and raps out in single words, Injury? Where? How bad? She is teaching to touch Lance's face, to try to get him to focus on her.

At the sudden fuss from Brynn, Lance pulls back with a grimace from her hands and attempted touch - his own lifting up, keys still dangling as shaky hands manage a basic response at least. I'm fine. He pulls his legs up onto the couch in a slight curl into the corner, dropping his arm back down to rest on a bony knee, keys dangling from his fingers. 'Just fine,' he says slowly, although it's inaudible, she can probably read his lips. She also probably doesn't believe him. It wouldn't be very believable even if anyone heard it.

The battered couch has probably been sat on by a multitude of traumatized people, and right now is no different. Caspian lowers himself to the couch next to Lance and grimaces, covering his eyes with his hands. "No injuries. Just…mental wounds re-opened, in my case and, probably, Lance's too." He pushes himself forward to sit, hands clasped together, eyes still closed. "Yamagato Park was….god, Brynn…it was like the past came back to haunt all of us /right there/"

Lance says fine like he expects his foster sister to believe it… or rather, he should know better than to think she will. Brynn's seen him enough times to know that she can't get much out of him, and so her eyes immediately are on Cas. She missed what he said first, while checking him over briefly for injuries with her own two eyes, but the last part she is watching closely.

Swooping down to the floor to fetch paper and pencil, she scrawls, No wounds? No bleeding? She's verifying what she didn't hear but also hasn't seen on either of them. Visions? That's never good. What happened?

Oh, good. Someone else can talk about this, so Lance can rely upon his usual defense mechanism and quietly disappear. Knees pulled up to his chest, his hands drop down to almost apathetically tug at the laces of his sneakers until they're kicked off, and then he grabs one of the pillows on the couch to hug, turning his head to look off at the wall in silence.

Caspian takes a breath and faces Brynn, illuminated by the lamp against the wall, the room a soft half-gloom that storytellers prefer to build the story in the room. "No wounds. No bleeding. No broken bones." Caspian lets out a breath, leaning back in the couch, one hand going to rest on Lance's shoulder, maintaining a small amount of contact. "I…I don't know what Lance saw. I only know what I saw. It was like…a memory, just came to life. A traumatic event that I was a witness to." His hand reaches out to touch something that isn't there before it goes back to brush through his hair, his eyes closing. "Everyone in the park had some kind of experience. They were all bad, I think. Bad memories, yanked to the surface. Cut open again."

There are many things that the teens who still call themselves the Lighthouse Kids have been witness to. But Lance, in particular, is the only one of them who has ever actually made use of those skills. It's entirely possible that it's not that memory, but certainly that knowledge — that Lance killed someone to protect the kids — sticks with some of us. Brynn cannot help with that memory or any others of his. She scrawls out for Cas, It's going to take some time for him to come out of it. Depending on what it pulled from his head… there've been a couple times he couldn't really shut it off again for several weeks.

The words sit stark against the page — these kids went through hell. At an even younger age than Caspian himself. Brynn rests her head on Lance's thigh, offering him the only comfort she knows — that he's not alone in his silent world.

At the touch to his shoulder, Lance flinches briefly before relaxing again, though he doesn't otherwise react at first. It's not for a minute or two that he moves, shifting a bit as Brynn's head settles on his thigh and sliding down from under it to drop himself to sit on the floor instead—and he glomps onto the deaf girl wordlessly, burying his face in her shoulder.

Caspian, unofficial Lighthouse kid by virtue of hanging out all the time, can only sit on the couch and try to work through the feelings that went through him. he does lean up, resting one hand on Brynn's shoulders, the other on Lance's, his head hung with closed eyes. Conversation will not happen at this point - it can't. He can only be there as best he can as support…support that he could use, too.

It's actually reassuring to Brynn when Lance makes that movement. It means he hasn't totally retreated into that world of silence that mimics hers. It's a really lonely place sometimes.

She wraps her arms around her brother and scoots just enough to lean against Caspian's leg, holding Lance tightly. Lighthouse Puppy Pile Time. It's not something they do much of anymore — it was more when they were all a lot smaller. Puppy piles of kids on the floor with blankets or sleeping bags, finding comfort and security in one another. Caspian's up on the couch, but close enough — the physical contact is what they can give one another.

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