Looking In Oz


devon2_icon.gif elisabeth_icon.gif graeme2_icon.gif

Scene Title Looking In Oz
Synopsis Regardless of funding issues, progress needs to continue and plans need to move forward. The best place to look may just be in Oz.
Date June 8, 2011

Endgame Safehouse

The smell of freshly made shepherd's pie fills the kitchen and common living area. And there's more than enough for everyone to enjoy. A number of the denizens of the safehouse have already been in and out and taken their share of the meal. Even enjoyed it despite word getting around that Devon helped with mashing potatoes. Liz cooked so obviously that makes up a teenager having his hand in the food making when he'd be better suited for washing the dishes. He helped with that too, by the way.

The blonde woman had excused herself for the moment, needing to make a phone call or …something. The teen didn't ask, as it left him to poke at his supper on silence. Sitting on the floor with legs crossed and folded, Devon pushes a stray carrot around his plate, a vague, contemplative look settled into his otherwise weary countenance.

Graeme's amongst the later to arrive, far later in the evening than he'd intended to, but things and life got in the way. But although the teacher has a real home to go to, he spends several nights a week at the safehouse. This time, he's late because he didn't drive, but came most of the way across the city by bus and by skateboard. When he comes into the common room, it's after he's paused in the hallway to take off the thick blue knit sweater and black microfleece cap, and the internal frame pack that he sometimes carries when he needs to carry more things is set in a corner, along with the skateboard and the other miscellaneous stuff.

He returns to sit down next to Devon, with a small bowl of food, about one normal serving. Which probably means that he had dinner before he left the bookstore, too, but there's no way he's turning down Liz's cooking. Even if Devon helped. And so it's the span of several minutes later before he greets the teenager, quiet. "Hey there." There's a world of unvoiced concern in the words, but Graeme knows better than to bother asking Devon the question. At least, not this time.

Response to the sound of entry is minimal, even by the teen's standards. Roused from his thoughts by the sounds at the door, Devon's hand tightens around the fork, though his firearm is tucked away at his back. His eyes slant toward the hallway, watching and waiting in baited silence until Graeme shows himself. His hand relaxes and the fork picks through some of the meal while the teacher helps himself to supper.

"Hey," Devon returns, glancing toward the older man. "Food's pretty good, Liz cooked. —Pretty sure I didn't sneeze into the potatoes, too." It's a self deprecating joke, delivered with some small trace of humor. A shoulder rises then sinks again and his eyes fall back to his plate.

"It is good," Graeme agrees, offering Devon a faint grin. "And it's good you helped, too." For a while, Graeme seems content to pay attention to his food and sit in companionable silence, though after another few minutes, he pauses, bowl set aside next to his glass of water in order to remove the guns from on his person and set them next to him. More comfortable that way. But eventually, the question does come. "How're you?" There's a pause, and Graeme adds, slow drawl of his coming out, "And fine ain't an answer."

But fine worked with Liz. Devon shakes his head as he sighs. "I am fine. Really. It's just…" He shrugs, the same single shoulder rolling up and down again. "It sucks, and it hurts… It was bad enough when it was just Heller and social services took her but…" He bites down on his lower lip, head shaking slightly. "I'll be okay."

Elisabeth slips back into the room quietly. She looks tired, but the sight of Graeme talking to Devon brings a faint half smile to her face. "There's enough for twenty people," she comments quietly to Graeme. "Help yourself, just leave some for Felix and Jaiden." Everyone else has already been through to eat. Liz and Devon were the ones more picking at their food.

"Alright, then." Graeme nods to Devon. "I ate before I got here, too," he says, when Elisabeth comes back in. "But I'll probably have a second bowl. I'll take watch, tonight, I'm not going to risk going back across the city." He points over to the internal frame pack in the corner of the room, before gesturing for Liz to oh, sit down or something, faint concern this time hidden on his face.

"I brought some more stuff, too. Clothes for Remi. New outfit for you, another set of clothes for Devon, some stuff that can go to whoever wants it. I was getting the set for Devon, and there was a clearance rack, stuff for mostly under a dollar. So." That's the tone of voice of not to argue with him buying stuff for the various people at the safehouse.

Devon glances in Elisabeth's direction when she reappears, offering a slight nod of acknowledgement. "Thanks," he asides to Graeme. And another time he might've been the one to argue. Instead he just tips his head into another nod and picks out another bite of supper.

"You got to stop picking up so many clothes, Graeme," Elisabeth chides gently. "I've got more things right now than any homeless person has a right to own." Not that she isn't grateful, but… if shit hits the fan, it all has to get left behind. "Jaiden's been packing some of it into the fallback locations. But uhm…." She pauses. "I'm glad you stopped in."

She's not making a point of excluding Devon, but she's giving him a little space. "I need you to make a point of seeing Russo," Elisabeth says calmly. "Let him know that our funding has fallen through, find out how far we can still take this without it."

Graeme actually looks almost sheepish, for once, caught at that the fact that one of the primary ways he expresses his worry and concern over his friends is by making sure the safehouse is pretty much just as well stocked as if they weren't you know, squatting in an abandoned building. "Alright, alright. But it's a sundress. And it matches the purple in your hair."

"And yes, I know, I know, you've got other sundresses, but…" he shrugs. It's sweet of him, in any case, though Graeme looks even more sheepish at his explanation of fashion and clothing (which he pays all too much attention to for someone whose primary hobby is a punching bag) given that Devon's there. Not a side the teenager's seen before. Instead, there's a nod, after a moment. "Alright. I'll try harder to contact him. He's hard to reach."

For all intents and purposes, Devon might not even be paying attention for all the scrutiny he gives his plate. But Graeme's seen it before, for all the time teacher and teen have spent together. He's listening if not actively participating in the conversation. His fork lowers to stab through some onion and celery, though the bite isn't raised to be taken. "Would it help if I called the assistant producer," he puts in quietly. "He came by the …place I was staying before, asked me to come back and help while… almost everyone is out sick."

Elisabeth walks past Devon and ruffles his hair, her touch casual. Just a way to tell him she's still here. As she heads for the fridge to get a bottle of water, she slants a glance toward Devon. "You can't take a legal position," she tells the boy regretfully. "That would have been a really good way in, but… they're going to be looking for you, kiddo. And Russo is high profile."

Graeme looks down at his mostly empty bowl, piecing things together silently as to that being why his calls to Phillip were flat out declined, and then leaves those thoughts to be in his head, turning back to Devon. "But if you can get the assistant producer to contact me, or something, anything …" Graeme lets the thought trail off into thin air. "That might help, help me make sure I get in contact with Russo. I, he's my cousin apparently, but I don't think he needs to know that, at this point in time, and contacting him has been a bit of a pain." A glance to Liz. "Grab another for me?" he asks. Meaning a water bottle, rather than the teacher getting up from where he's sitting.

A shadow that passes for a grin passes over Devon's expression when his hair is ruffled, but it's gone a beat later. "I know," he replies, acknowledging his uncertain legal standings, "it's just…" He stops, fishing for a way to explain why he'd consider bringing the idea to Kincaid, or Kincaid to the idea, without giving away the man's secret. Time travelers, prickly bunch. Graeme's suggestion gets a look and a slow nod. "I think Kincaid would help. He's… good at knowing things. I'll call him, if it'll help, and… I don't think he'll turn me in, but I'll set up his meeting with Graeme." In afterthought he adds, "Don't tell Brad you're related. Won't go over well."

Bringing the additional water bottle with her, Elisabeth quirks a brow. "What makes you think this guy won't turn you in?" she asks. "And for that matter, what makes you think they're not already watching him? If you were there enough, the feds'll be asking anyone associated with you."

Graeme nods, taking the water bottle when it's handed over and then waiting for Devon's response. "I didn't think it would go over well, not the time or the place or any of that right now." The name of the assistant producer, Kincaid, is tucked away for later recall, and Graeme looks over to Liz. "Come on, sit down or something?" Unvoiced, please.

"Good point," Devon answers, sighing. It's not quite defeat, but it's a point he can't argue. Not entirely. "He's…" The teen looks up, first to Graeme and then Liz. "Not from around these parts." Technically speaking. "Kind of like how Dorothy wasn't from Oz. I don't think he'd turn me in, I hope I can trust him after what happened at Coyote Sands. But to be safe, Graeme, I'll give you his desk number. It'd be the best channel to reach him through."

Elisabeth's head comes around sharply at Devon. 'Not from around these parts' can mean a lot of things. Seriously. But the words 'Coyote Sands' mean the blonde is floored. "What the hell do you know about Coyote Sands? And…. what does 'not from around here' mean? Not from around here like he's not local to New York? Like he's not a US citizen? Or like his fucking birthday hasn't exactly arrived yet?" Which will make zero sense to him at all unless he knows what she's talking about.

She does move to sit, though, where she can see Devon's face when he answers.

Graeme's turning the Oz reference over in his head as Liz talks. "Somehow I'd think the reference to Oz means the third," he says. Time travel makes him wrinkle his nose in a less than thrilled expression, and Graeme tilts his head to watch Liz, curious more than anything else.

"We were supposed to dig," Devon replies, eyes sliding toward Graeme again at his interjection. Brows knitting together, he returns his attention to Liz. "Brad got a message about going to Coyote Sands and to bring shovels. When we got there it was fenced in, razor wire, no trespassing signs, the whole bit." The teen offers a shrug, the reasons for going were as much a mystery to him as anyone else. "We were approached by unmarked military or militia, things got dicey when Brad accidentally went blasty hands. We were arrested and taken in for questioning, but DoEA showed up and got us out before things got too far." His eyes shift toward Graeme again, then return to Liz. "And… I'm not exactly sure when his birthdate is."

She's only just now tweaked onto the thought. Claire mentioned that Russo was in that dream. The one where Liz was trying to get away. Once again, six degrees of separation my lily white ass. Elisabeth closes her eyes. It would make sense. To put one of the fourteen fucking time traveling kids near Brad Russo. The blonde just never realized that Devon was one of the people who'd gone with the man to Coyote Sands. "Shit," she breathes in resignation. "Yeah. Go ahead. Make the call," she says tiredly. "Russo needs to know who to talk to, and …. I doubt we're going to be able to do what I'd originally hoped. The producer is heading back to the West Coast." Or so she assumes. "But I think with the uninterruptible broadcast network we have in place, we'll probably be able to take it viral before they can stop it."

Graeme nods a bit, empty bowl set aside and water bottle tilted to his mouth, and then he moves over to sit next to Liz from where he had been. Then he sighs, trying to figure out how to word things. "Unrelated, mostly," he says. "You said that … if there's a problem you needed to know. I didn't think it would be, but." There's a pause. "You really, really if you haven't already, need to talk to Remi about doing things for herself. About ditching a little of the entitlement." And there's more to this problem, but for the moment, he'll bring it up in steps.

Devon nods in slow acceptance. He'll call Kincaid first thing in the morning, from a line well away from the safehouse. His eyes tick over to Graeme as Remi is brought up, a small crease coursing over his brow in agreement though his opinions are kept wholly to himself. Lowering his gaze again, the teen returns to his plate, picking over the veggies idly.

The lines of stress immediately reappear in Elisabeth's face and she moves to stand up. If she has to deal with one more thing that Remi has done…. *sigh* "I spoke with Remi late last night. She's… struggling with her ability and the things it tells her, but she's going to try to do better about very politely tuning it out or ignoring it. At the very least, she'll do better about keeping her mouth shut about anything she might accidently overhear." She pauses and touches the top of Graeme's head. "The ….. you know, I'm going to be a little bit selfish tonight, okay? Yes, I need to know if there's a problem, but… I didn't sleep any more last night than Devon did and frankly, I don't think I have the reserves tonight to deal with the additional problems that come with our resident ballerina. I know that her being here is stressful. But I also know that she wants to help us. I'd like to give her the opportunity for a while longer."

Graeme reaches up and intertwines his fingers with Liz's, gentle and concerned. "Alright," he says, pulling her hand down to lean his cheek against it for a moment. "I can do that … as for you, try to get some sleep?" Whining about that the ballerina kissed him and such can wait for another day, because it really was just going to be whining. Instead, Graeme kisses her hand before letting it go, though there's that sheepish grin about the display of affection in front of the teenager again. "I'll take watch tonight again. We can deal with problems later. Tomorrow. Another day."

"G'night, Liz," Devon offers quietly, still paying more attention to his supper than whatever Liz and Graeme are exchanging, however mild and chaste. His fork rises and a bite is claimed, meanwhile his thoughts circle around the best way to breach the topics with Kincaid and Graeme.

"Thanks, Graeme," Elisabeth replies wearily. And she looks to Devon. "If you need me, you know where mine and Ygraine's room is. Even if it's just to talk, you can get me up," she tells him quietly. She's worried about the boy and she needs to make sure he's okay. And then she slips away, hoping to find some peace in oblivion for a while.

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