Present And Future Plans


adisa_icon.gif brian_icon.gifsamara_icon.gif tahir_icon.gif

Scene Title Present and Future Plans
Synopsis The Dunham siblings reunite, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows.
Date November 1, 2011

Pollepel Island

It's been a quiet few weeks since Ali's birth. That is, except Ali, who won't shut up. Baby Winters has a mouth on her, and isn't afraid to use it. Which is why, for the last three days, Sami feels like she's walked a million miles. "Come ooooon," Sam rolls her eyes to the chorus of baby tears. She shuffles down the hall, holding the infant close against her shoulder as she bob-steps.

"I know it's cold and bright and sort of stressful as people scramble to figure out what on earth they're doing, but the world isn't that bad is it?" she uses the most sing-song voice she can manage while treading through the castle hall. "And I imagine being born is something of a rude awakening, but you're born! You're here! You need to let the past disappear. Forget about it. It's goooone. And now we're here, and there's nothing to cry over right now~" an irony that has her sniffling. Hormones.

"Aww." That's right, Auntie Adisa, the one who doesn't have to worry about the constant care of the infant, thinks it's practically adorable. Who would've thunk it? "Is lil Ali Elula like…totally still fussin' and a-frettin'?" She giggles softly. In her hand, she unraps a little bundle of cheese and bread. She looks down at it and then back at Samara. "It's uh…like, it's not much." She winces slightly. "But I figured you could, you know, use some food? If you wanted me to hold Ali Elula for a bit?" She doesn't know why she calls her niece by her first and middle names, but she's gotten in the habit of it.

"Plus, I figured you could like, use a little break, maybe? It's the least I could do, Sami." She smiles a little tight smile. "Besides, who better to keep the little motormouth some company than her motormouth auntie?" She giggles a little bit.

Exasperation tugs at the corners of Sami's face, but it turns alight at the offerings. Hazel eyes spark further when Adisa offers to take the little bundle of …whatever. Slowly, Sam adjusts her hold on the baby and slides Ali to her sister, wincing slightly at the hand-off. "She's so loud for someone so tiny," she observes quietly.

But the bread and cheese are enough. "But yeah, a break would be — well," her eyes turn upwards. "Let's just say, Ali has a lot to say. A lot!" She manages another flicker of a smile to her sister as she manages to pluck the bread and cheese from the package.

As far as food is concerned, she manages, "Anything is perfect. Honestly. I need food. Desperately." Her cheeks hue a pale pink. "This one took a lot out of me." And continues to considering Ali's motormouth ways.

The game of changing arms takes place as Ali moves from mother to aunt, and food moves in the other direction. "Who's a tiny lil motormouth, huh? Is it my cutesy little niece Ali Elula? Huh?" Adisa adjusts the little one in her arms so that she's cradled in one arm and the other hand can be free to gently distract her. As Adisa's hand gently brushes Ali's cheek, it lights up and sports a rainbow themed colouring. "I like…totally bet this isn't something our little motormouth sees everyday." She holds her hand up above Ali's head, letting the baby's gaze catch sight of the rainbow hand.

"Mom totally used to call me a motormouth, didn't she? Or was that dad? Or both?" There's a pause as Adisa furrows her brow. "Or was it like…um, was it you and Tahir?" She frowns, rainbow fingers wiggling to distract Ali. "Or was it Mrs. Jenkins the choir director? That lady was so oooooold she was like, King Tut's grandma." She giggles softly, having now briefly lost track of her original thought.

"You were so preoccupied with Ali Elula here and like…I was totally just sitting around thinking, 'What should I do? What is there to do?' And I so totally realized that you hadn't eaten much. So I brought you the cheese and bread!" The youngest Dunham sibling seems rather proud of herself that she thought to help her sister. Look ma, she's growing as a person!

"Addie, I'm pretty sure it was all of the above," Sami offers with a smirk. "And probably a bunch of other people you didn't think of or remember." Her smile extends considerably, drawing higher at the edges and her chin tucks towards her chest as she nibbles on the cheese and bread.

"I really appreciate this," she motions towards the cheese. "Anything to make life a bit easier makes sense." Her smile ticks up higher on one side, exposing a tight dimple on one side. "And yeah, Mrs. Jenkins was like born old! That woman had a chip on her shoulder when she was a baby. In fact, I bet she came out of the womb old. She didn't know what it was like to be young ever." Her nose wrinkles, "Remember that time Tahir played that prank on her? I thought her hair would always be blue."

Quiet. This is not the usual way that Tahir Avery Dunham enters a location. He's as calm as he's never been and it shows. There's clearly too much that he's been dealing with recently to be happy about much of anything. Except for the fact that he's got his entire family around and alive. That's something. Something that actually makes some sort of sense.

Agent Dunham finds a piece of wall and immediately leans up against it, crossing his arms and looking down at the floor. He's only here because this is where his family is and that's where he's always going to be until all of this bullshit is over. He doesn't say anything to anyone. There's nothing to say.

They'll all be dead soon, anyway. Or he'll be dead while the others get away. That's the plan, anyway. That's definitely the plan.

"Oh…" Adisa looks rather quite serious for a moment, having even forgotten that her her rainbow hand-light was supposed to be an attempt to distract Ali, using it instead to brush aside a strand of hair. "Well, like, you know, I just totally can't help it if like, I talk a lot, can I? Besides, it's like, imperative that people know what I'm thinking. Adisa Mary Dunham's opinion is very important." She nods as a matter of fact as she slightly moves about to help keep Ali in some sort of distracted motion. "It's like Madonna said: 'Listen, everyone is entitled to my opinion.'" She looks down at he niece and grins. "You know what I'm talking about, don'tcha lil Ali Elula!" She grins and laughs.

"I think anything that makes life a comfort right now? It's like, such a total blessing, you know?" She says agrees. "Oh…my…great ball of chili flakes. I so totally forgot about the prank Tahir played on Mrs. Jenkins! I totally thought she was gonna explode! But the hair looked fantabulous!" Her hair waves back and forth and she shakes her head and laughs. "I wish she would've kept the blue hair!"

Sami rubs her eyes when Adisa looks serious. "It's not a critique, I'm just saying no one in their right mind would remotely think you're shy." Her eyes warm. Ali coos softly when Adisa moves the strand of hair from her face, like a quiet affirmation of sorts.

She pops a piece of cheese into her mouth and she treads towards Tahir with the small bundle of bread and cheese in hand. "Hungry?" she offers with a single arched eyebrow. "Never say I don't share."

And then twisting back to Adisa, she manages a broad grin, "Yeah, Mrs. Jenkins walked on eggshells around all of us after that. I think she was certain we'd do something worse, Addie. I mean, besides chatter rather than sing."
"I'm okay. I had uh… something earlier."

Tahir shrugs at the bread and cheese because he's not wanting to take food out of the mouths of his siblings. "Just came to make sure you two" Tahir has to take a second to realize that there's a new part of the family around these days. " you three, were okay." Tahir nods quickly as if attempting to speed these words along. "Makin' rounds."

Tahir uncrosses his arms to reveal that he's holding a gun in one of his hands. Apparently, he's always on edge now. He doesn't even bite the topic about the past that's happening. And he never misses a chance to talk about that prank. It's one of his classics! Damn childish past. Gone forever. "Everybody good in here?"

"Psh. Me? Shy? Yeah, you're totally right. Nobody'd think that!" Adisa shakes her head, a raised eyebrow indicating just how silly she seems to think that thought is. "And now Auntie Addie's gotta teach lil Ali how to be the most popular belle at the ball! Isn't that right lil Ali?" She croons as cradles her niece. "Before anyone knows it, Ali and Addie will be the brains behind this family." She coos, as one of her multicoloured fingers gently boops her motormouth niece's nose.

Approaching the eldest Dunham sibling, Adisa furrows her brow. "You gotta eat, bro. Like, seriously. You're no good to us if you're week and hungry, mmkay? Don't make me start the waterworks, 'cause if I start the waterworks, lil Ali'll start the waterworks, and if lil Ali starts with the waterworks, Sami'll get exhasperated because she's had very little sleep, and if Sami gets exhasperated because of her very little sleep, you're gonna wish you'd eaten something to begin with, because not eating is what will have started me with the waterworks." It's a long run on sentence, one of the ones that Adisa is famous for. "So please, eat."

She tilts her head slightly. "You know, I think Mrs. Jenkins would've been secretly proud if she knew that I could actually sing. But then she would've been too afraid that we'd do something more, so she wouldn't show her approval." She grins slightly at the thought.

Ali giggles at the fingers bops her nose, clearly fascinated by the array from her Aunt. That alone gives the small babe something to focus on, if only momentarily. Sami lifts her eyebrows at Tahir's response, but Adisa's is the one that renders her, momentarily, speechless. Her lips hitch up on one side into a crooked smile that doesn't meet her eyes, but she does actually answer the question, "We're good," the assertion is real.

"Ali won't shush for long, and Addie is bonding." The smile turns a stitch sheepish. "Honestly, I'm just glad to have you both here. Even if we don't want to be here long." Hazel eyes turn upwards. "The Lighthouse kids— they're evolved orphans— Brian got them out just before Ali came along. I think," her teeth toy at her bottom lip, "well. When," because she's already lived as dead, "we get off this island, I hope you'll both help look out for them and this little tike. It's a hostile world to people like us." She smirks, "I'm still legally dead and know too well."

"I'll do whatever you need me to do, Samara." Agent Dunham has completely taken control of Tahir Avery Dunham's body. So much so that when he turns to look at Adisa, he reaches up into a pocket and comes out with a small bar that he's been eating on for forever. It's obvious because of the fact that the paper's been rolled down. He unrolls it, still gun in one hand, peels the wrapper down some and then just takes a small bite. While chewing, he folds the wrapper back down and tucks the protein bar back into his pocket. "There." is said to Adisa, although it's just as plain and dry as possible. He doesn't actually sound sarcastic or annoyed. His sister needed him to eat, so he ate. Crisis Averted.
Does anyone else miss the other Tahir?

Coming up from behind Tahir, Winters pauses. Continuing forward his steps are louder and more pronounced. Everyone's on edge here, it's better to make sure that people know where you are. There are several Brians in the castle, and though arguably there could always be one with the baby he's thought it best to try and get some kind of normalcy and give Sam and the baby space, at least a little.

One hand comes up to rest on Tahir's shoulder. "How're you healing?" He gives Tahir a smile, looking the other man over. The gun is noted but not remarked upon.

"Hey Addie." He smiles sweetly, "Takin' care of our girls?" Brian drops his hand from Tahir's shoulders but remains there at least for now. Moving to one foot to get a look at his daughter, his lips curling up.

"Well," Adisa eyes her brother with a scrutiny that both he and Samara will recognize as a look often given by their father. "It will do for now. But you'd better keep that up, young man!" She nods her head firmly, her one free hand still changing colours throughout the spectrum as she works to distract the baby.

"Me and Ali Elula are bonding so good, aren't we?" She says with a giggle, smiling down at her niece. "Yeah. Who's the cutest little thing in this family to come along since me?" She can't help but be the happy, proud auntie! "I'll help those kids anyway I can, Sammie. I swear. I wanna make sure they're ok, ok? Just tell me what's needed of me and I'll do it!"

Giving Brian a 'Of course I am' look, Adisa grins. "I'm definitely looking after them. It's my duty as sister and aunt to make sure that I help babysit every now and then, giving Sammie a rest. Plus, how adorable is Ali? I'd hang out with her all the time if I could!"

Sami's smile strains and body stiffens when Tahir's tone comes out so deadpanned. But it's Adisa who actually has her cracking a more normal grin. "I don't think Doctor Chris Dunham has anything on you, Addie." But the grin finds its usual warmth at Brian's appearance.
But her siblings get an affirmation. "Honestly it's a balance. Keeping kids safe and cared for while making sure they can look out for themselves longterm."

Her neck cranes and she admires Ali once again, "Like that one. She's so tiny now, but she's a badass. I can tell." Her lips quirk, "Just your average little ass-kicker. It's in her genes." Her eyes narrow and she glances towards Brian, clearly seeking agreement. But the last earns a chuckle, "I think I'm actually doing pretty okay. But it's nice to have people that have our backs." Her smile turns crooked.

"Healing well. Appreciate it." Agent Dunham's words are tossed towards Brian with the ease of an individual that owes another individual his life. He even finds himself standing up a little bit straighter out of respect for Brian. A respect that he didn't have before the day he almost died. Well, really, some of him died that day. It's… not exactly the best new life.

Agent Dunham tucks the gun away since he's realizing he probably looks more insane than protector-y with a baby in the room as well. "If no one needs anything else, I should probably find out if anyone needs to be relieved of guard duty." Not like he needs sleep. There's other things he could be doing. Like protecting everyone.

"I got guard duty right now Tahir." Brian gives the other man a moment to realize what that means, before strolling in the rest of the room. "Stay with us a little while. Have you even held your niece yet?" Without waiting for the answer to the question, the former Agent Winters goes to gently seek permission of taking the little one. While doing so he leans over to plant a brief kiss on Samara's head, bright smile and all.

Looking at Adisa placing one hand on her shoulder, gesturing his free hand to Tahir.

"It would be nice to have you two around. With the rest of the kids. We're gonna be looking for a better place. Maybe some land. I was hoping you could help me with all that Tahir." Now that the baby bomb is on target for Tahir, Brian goes to sit next to Samara, lacing one arm around her.

"I've been given this look enough from dad that I could give him a run for his money, no diggity!" Adisa smirks. She was always the trouble maker. Even more so after they thought Samara had died. And as the old saying goes, 'Practice makes perfect'. Whenever he gave her the look, she'd return it in kind.

Somewhat reluctantly, Adisa walks over to Tahir and raises an eyebrow. "I think Ali Elula wants to say hello to her uncle? You can't say no to your niece can you? Tahir, don't say no to your niece!" She bats her eyes a little, glancing between Ali and Tahir.

A flicker of a smile tugs the corners of Sami's mouth when the baby is getting passed to her brother. The grin turns bittersweet without her permission, prompting her to banish it as she leans into Brian with a long sigh. "You know, things would be kind of perfect if we weren't being hunted and the world wasn't about to end," she manages a comical grin despite the words.

"In fact, having all of you here, with Mitten," not Ali this time, she casts a look towards Brian. "I'm trying it on as a nickname." Her smile grows, complete with a dimple. It's impossible to tell if she's serious or not, and harder still considering she did suggest it as a real name for the small babe.

"I dare you to smell her head. It's like baby magic," Sam leans heavier into Brian. "Just a reminder everything is new and fresh and good."
Tahir locks his arms even more than when he was trying not to eat. "Still healing." That's his excuse for not reaching out to take the baby from Adisa. "She's very lucky to have the parents she has. You guys are going to make one kickass family." Tahir looks off to the side because he's not planning on being around long enough to be able to be a part of it. Not that he's saying any of this. It might be readable on his face though.

"I'm sure she smells fine." Tahir's not about to allow them to trick him into holding a baby. Just for something bad to happen when he does. He's got that kind of luck right now, apparently.

"Let's just get out of our current predicament first, Brian. We'll see about things after that." Or they will. Tahir's pretty sure he's going to be dead.

"That's your family Tahir." A gesture to the baby. "Hold her just once." He presses as Sam presses into him. Hugging her shoulders he lets his head lull over to rest onto hers. Though his body may be relaxed his gaze is intent on Tahir. It's a road he's walked on before. And will likely walk again.

Glancing down at Samara. "Just so long as you don't try to change her name legally to mitten. I like our Ali Elula. If you say it fast enough it sounds like hallelujah. Oh man. I should learn that song on the guitar."

"Tahir." Adisa pouts, in that way that she does, when she's disappointed. That way that she's done since she was four years old and didn't get the fanciest of ballet shoes. "Hold her just once, I'll be here to protect you." She gives him a wide eyed, pleading looking. "Look, Tahir. Ali Elula wants to meet you. She wants you to hold her. Won't you hold her?" She adjusts her arms and stance so it's easier to make an exchange with Tahir.

"Our whole family is kickass. If anyone says otherwise, I'll definitely kick their ass." She had to contribute to the conversation about kicking ass. She had to. "I should probably learn how to fight…" It sounds more like an afterthought than anything.

Tahir thinks they should get out of their current predicament first. "I dunno," Sami clears her throat. "Seems like a good idea to look ahead. It's easy to get caught in the ugliness and forget the reason for even pushing forward. But that future— it's like hope. Or something. A little bit goes a long ways." Hazel eyes cut back towards Ali. "That one, despite her persistence in not coming into the world, reminds me of why all of this matters." Her smile curves higher.

The mention of not legally changing her name earns Brian a broad grin. "No legal name changes. Even if she legally existed. Her name is Ali. Scout's honour. Even if Mitten Winters is hella cute."

A lopsided grin follows Adisa's assertion. She looks towards her brother then back to Brian. "Tay could probably give you some pointers. He knows how to hold his own…" her lips purse as she silently holds her breath as if breathing will make this entire effort fail.

"I can't hold her. Not yet." Tahir tries to leave it at that because there's probably some other reason why he's trying not to hold the kid. Nothing personal. "Yeah, I'd be willing to show you what I know, Adisa. It's not much or even that useful but I'd feel more comfortable knowing you had some formal training. We'll start tomorrow morning." He's so much more into this new topic of conversation. Because it doesn't involve him trying to hold a baby.

"Sorry, Samara." He's using everybody's actual names. Weird. "I don't mean to say we shouldn't look forward to a time wen all this madness is over. I just don't want us to lose sight of how bad things are now. So that we can make sure they get better." All of these topics make it easier to not look at Adisa and her pouting face of doom.

"You should learn to fight." Brian chimes in in agreement. Though normally he would have been happy that Tahir was in agreement. That he is so easily is somewhat unsettling. "And to shoot. Sameye could help you out. I mean not right now. But when she's rested you know." He gives Samara's shoulder a light squeeze. "Give you a sparring partner. A reason to beat up on each other." He grins.

He's given up on Tahir holding the baby, for now at least.

Brian waatches Tahir speaking to Adisa for a moment before pursing his lips. "It gets easier, Tahir."

Sighing as he Pouting Face of Doom doesn't work, Adisa glances between Samara, Tahir, and Brian. "I'd like…totally be willing to learn anything." She says as she goes back to partially paying attention to her niece. Gotta keep the little one occupied, after all! "My work in the salon totally won't translate to protecting myself. And like, neither with music or fashion sense." There's a pause as she bobs her head back and forth in consideration of something. "I suppose I could dedicate myself to learning more about sewing and crocheting. Make clothes for people." She shrugs.

"Anyway, yeah, Tahir. I'd actually kinda really like to learn to, you know, fight a bit, I guess? And how to like, protect myself. All Super Tahir Stylez. With a zee at the end of it. Because that's how badass it'll be."

Brian can feel Sam stiffen against him when Tahir says he can't hold Ali. But otherwise, she manages to maintain an almost normal demeanour. She manages a vague flicker of a smile, "I don't think… I don't know." Her teeth play at her bottom lip and she tries again, "There's a lot I don't know. There really is. And I know things suck. Believe me. I know they do. But we have each other. Again. And I need to hold onto hope that it's long-term." She sniff softly. There's no further remark, just a vague frown when Brian mentions things getting better.
But sparring partners? Yeah, that's something she can glom onto. "It's kind of like dance. Could be like the good old days when we practiced together." Her eyes twinkle lightly. "Could be fun~ Added bonus, could make us more kickass than we already are~" she virtually sings the words.

The notion of the hair salon not being useful for protection merits a small nod. "You could cut my hair. I mean, everyone can use a haircut now and then, right?" Pause. "But clothes are a good idea. Useful."

Agent Dunham sighs. Quietly. It's a quiet sigh that lasts the entire time that it takes him to unfold his arms and open them up for the baby. He doesn't want to be doing this but he doesn't want to be making them feel worse. He's trying. It's hard but he's trying.

"I'll show anybody, anything I know." Tahir says before he going quiet, since he's about to end up with a baby in his arms. "… somebody get the gun please." He doesn't want to hold a baby while still having a gun. "… not Adisa." Just in case. He can't have her with a gun. Dear lord, no.

"There's a hairstylist in E-Ville we're hoping to get out. I bet you girls would like him." As Tahir finally opens his arms up, Brian is practically bounding up to disarm Tahir before Adisa gets a chance. The gun is taking quickly and nimbly as Brian falls back over to Samara. "Start shooting lessons too.. Get you all caught up." The gun is tucked away as Brian softens back into Samara, smiling as Tahir takes the little one.

"Have you two met my sister?" It is asked of Tahir and Adisa. "All that's happened it's hard to remember. Gillian?" Leaning into Samara he smiles softly. "You don't know how nice it is to have you guys here like this. I know.. It's terrible for you. I know. But. We've been this way for a while." His hand gestures around to the castle around them. "My life has been a cluster" glance to baby "trainwreck for as long as I remember with these kinds of issues. But.. having you guys here." He shakes his head smiling. "What I wouldn't give to have a safe place where you all, Gillian, the baby.. Where we could all be safe and just.. Live."

"I could totally cut your hair, Sammie!" Adisa actually gets excited at the thought. "But no…" She clears her throat. "Nevermind. Some of the things that like, some of the women got there were weird, even by my standards. Not that I didn't totally appreciate Kelly for giving me the job. He was awesome. I mean, I started off as receptionist, but I loved it there!" Yes, Adisa is in happy talking mode now.
She grins at Samara. "We should totally be sparring partners. I totally look forward to it. Totally!" She smiles brightly. "And we can like, discuss clothes for me to make!" She's on a roll, this one is. And nothing can stop her now!

When Tahir finally accepts taking the baby, she smiles gently, softly and carefully transferring Ali from her arms to his. "Theeeere we go. That's a good Tahir and precious Ali." She does give Tahir another look, though. "I'm very careful, I'll have you know, Tahir." But Brian gets the gun and that's that. "A hairstylist? In E-Ville? Who…?" She begins to ask, but realizes it could be just about anyone. What are the chances it's someone she knows? Let alone the person who hired her?

"Gillian?" Adisa looks at Brian, frowning and furrowing her brow in concentration. "I'm…not sure if I've met her?" She can't recall, anyway.
Sam virtually sparkles when Tahir takes Ali in his arms, and she straightens just a stitch, still holding her breath when it happens. It's then that she realizes she's holding her breath. So she releases it quickly and pants to catch another. Things feel more right with the world now. She shoots Tahir a small nod of approval. Their parents can't meet Ali yet, but somehow, having some family connect warms her heart.

"Yeah," Sami agrees with Brian. "Having you guys here makes it feel a lot more normal. And I mean, I haven't really had normal since before," her lips press together into a thin line. "Just having you guys here… I dunno. I'm sorry you're here, but I'm also glad to have you around."

And then, lazily, using Brian as a support, she rises to her feet. "That said, I actually could use a nap." She casts them all a sheepish smile. "I'm sorry to say this, but I am virtually asleep already. Watch Ali?" she glances between the trio, so it's impossible to know who she's talking to, but she leaves the question to linger just the same before treading back from whence she came.

Tahir doesn't hear anything else once he's got the baby in his arms. He doesn't see anything else. He's lost. Trapped in the world of the baby. While he doesn't look like his other self completely, theres a chance that someone might be able to see that the old, Classic Tahir Avery Dunham sparkles in his eyes for a few moments. He doesn't manage a smile, though. Instead, he looks more worried than before. As if now that he's held the baby, things have gotten even more real. There's more at stake now. More people to lose if he doesn't do everything in his power to fix this.
Tahir offers the baby his finger and just sort of stays focused on the future of the Dunham Clan.

Brian smiles faintly at Adisa, his hand going to find Samara's to give it a brief squeeze as she starts to go. "Okay. You rest well. Don't worry about it. Between the group of us I think the little will make it another day." As she goes Brian leans back against the wall.

"Well you'll have to meet her soon. You'll be sisters at some point." He smiles lightly. His grey eyes focusing on Tahir watching the other man's eyes dance over the little one. "Like she said.. I'm sorry that the world is this way for you now." He pauses, looking at both of them. "But I'm so glad you're here with us. A part of our family."

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