Wolves In Sheep's Clothing


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Scene Title Wolves in Sheep's Clothing
Synopsis Daphne Millbrook awakens to find herself in a hostile situation, and must make a tough decision in order to save her life and be reunited with her friends.
Date April 30, 1945

The rain is comforting, a light drizzle brushing sore cheeks; the air is warmer here too, strangely.

Bleary vision focused up on slate gray skies, that much is the only consistent thing to where Daphne Millbrook was last she remembers. As the tingling numbness of unconsciousness drifts hazily from the speedster's mind, the ache of pain is the next evident thing to cross her senses, that and the vibration of the wood flooring she's laying on in what is evidently the back of a very large, forest green truck.

Seated around her, dour looking men in slate gray military uniforms chutch rifles anxiously, eyes out and away from the truck to the thick forests on either side of the evidently bumpy road they're traveling on. A sharp jolt of pain comes up through Daphne's right leg, a line of white-hot agony that shoots from the heel of her left foot all the way up thought to her knee. Something is damaged.

With blonde dreadlocks soaked by the rain, her dark brown eyes take in the dirty faces of these tired looking soldiers. One young man, probably no older than Daphne, sits hunched forward with his gloved hands wrenched around the haft of his bolt-action rifle, tears streaming down his face, silently crying.

There's a squeak of old brakes and a lessening of the bumping and jostling Daphne is experiencing, and its evident that the truck she's in is slowing down. Overhead, she can see the forest canopy thickening, just in time to hear the roar of propellor-driven engines from a massive plane shadow her view of the sky, an old bomber soaring through the clouded heavens.

Someone is speaking, but it's dull against Daphne's ears, a hiss of unfamiliar tongue and one of the young soldiers is getting up, stepping over where Daphne lays on the bed of the truck to walk to the back, then climbs up over the folded tailgate and jumps down out of sight. It's only then she notices legs nearby to her, gray slacks and black boots, a long gray jacket marked with badges and pins, that familiar red arm-band around one sleeve.

As she looks up, Daphne sees only a tired old man, tall and lanky with a gaunt face, thinning hair swept back from a creased brow, thick glasses hiding eyes as blue as a clearer day's sky would be. He looks troubled, by the way he sits, golved hands folded and brows furrowed, head bowed.

Daphne Millbrook is a long way from Kansas.

Dessau, Germany

100 Miles Southwest of Berlin

April 30th, 1945

Turning her head slightly to look for — something famliiar, like Odessa or Clara or Hiro but not seeing any such faces from her past, or future as it were — Daphne debates pretending to play unconscious, to play possom and hope for the best that way — with the injury she can't speed away as she might otherwise. Her headachey mind tries to make sense of what's happened and why and how: the where and when are only too painfully obvious.

Licking her lips and tasting blood there, the speedster clears her throat to warn them she's awake, as they have guns and she certainly doesn't want to surprise them. "Excuse me… Pardonnez moi, monsieur?" She doesn't speak German, but her adventures in Paris lent her at least some conversational French, peering up and seeking the blue eyes of the officer above her. "«Where are you taking me?»" she continues in French, her dark eyes wide in her face, so very afraid of the answer. "«Were there others with me?»"

One of the young soldiers practically jumps out of his suit when Daphne speaks. He jitters, fingerless gloved hands fumbling for his rifle, shakily lifting it up and staring wide-eyed at Daphne as he tries to pull the slide back on the bolt-action rifle to chamber a round. Before he can, the old man raises a leather-gloved hand in stern disapproval, and the young soldier halts, tensely, jaw tight and eyes wide before he lowers the rifle and slouches back onto his seat.

Blue eyes then turn down to Daphne from the old man, and one very thin brow raises on his wrinkled brow. "«You were alone,»" is probably not the answer that Dapne wants to hear from the thin old soldier. "«What is your name, my dear?»" His French is well-spoken, a native speaker or someone who'd spent time learning the proper accent, even though from his uniform he's likely German. Thouogh the sheer implausibility of it all is still throbbing at the back of Daphne's mind with her headache.

As he speaks, the old man moves off of the bench seat he was on and comes to take a knee by Daphne's side, his coat parting and one side swept over a raised knee. Gloved hands move down to Daphne's leg, and she can feel and on pin-prickling sensation of tingling nerves when his hand comes near her leg. "«We found you in a field on the side of the road, you were abandoned. Where are you from?»" Blue eyes alight back to Daphne, one brow raised in slow uncertainty.

With the truck stopped and conscious back, Daphne can hear the murmur of German outside the vehicle, but everyone seems to be keeping their voices down, and no one looks like they've gotten any sleep in a long time.

The startle of the young man has Daphne sucking in breath sharply, though her instincts keep her from trying to duck away in flash-speed time when she's in a truck full of Nazis and can't actually run away. Her throat works for a moment before she swallows hard, mouth and throat dry in juxtaposition to her sodden hair and clothing. Dark eyes blink up at the soft-spoken man before she glances at her leg, chewing her lower lip as she considers how to answer.

"Daphne," she finally says, to answer the first question. It's not like she exists in 1945. "«I'm an American but I've been living in Paris»" is offered next — it's mostly the truth, after all, and it makes more sense to her to have come from Paris than New York — slightly.

Daphne glances at her clothing for the day — the peacoat almost looks in keeping with the times, the jeans not-so-much, and the snow boots are made of materials most likely not invented yet, so she isn't going to confess to being from 2010 — unless she has to.

"«There was no one else with me? I do not remember how I got here»" she adds, frowning and searching his face for hints that there may have been someone else — Odessa. Hiro. Clara.

Because if there's not, Daphne has no idea how she's going to get back to the future.

A suspicious look is offered down to Daphne, and the old man offers another lift of his pencil thin brow. "American," he notes with a nod of his head, "Paris is a dangerous place for an American to be living," and his switch to English comes with a noticably thick German accent, clearly not his first language or even second, but the old soldier seems remarkably fluent. "You're either very brave…" he presses two gloved fingers to the side of Daphne's ankle, eliciting a reflexive twitch of her leg and a wince of pain from the touch, "…or very foolish."

Breathing in a slow breath, the old man moves his hand away from Daphne's ankle, offering her a gloved hand. "Your ankle is sprained, there may be a fracture, I cannot tell without proper time." He rises slowly, keeping the hand held out, clearly offering to help her up off of her back, and judging from his positioning intends to lever her onto the bench so she can sit. "My name is Kazimir," he offers as an afterthought, "and I am very lucky to have found you, miss Daphne."

From around the back of the truck, there's a metallick clunk and a creak as two German SS officers unlatch the tailgate and lower it, revealing to Daphne the long and muddy dirt road they must have been traveling on, and the thick, desolate forests as far as the eye can see down the winding trail. The air is so crisp here, the scent of pine in the air, moisture on the wind, and it's so warm compared to New York of course.

"I may be equal parts of both," Daphne says in a voice still a touch rough from being recently unconscious. She glances down at the tingle of Kazimir's touch on her foot. A sprain isn't so bad… can she speed away with a sprain? But where would she go? She'd still be in 1945. Her brows knit as the sting of tears comes up to her eyes, threatening to fall before she blinks away.

Self preservation kicks in. There's a Nazi who seems not hell-bent on killing her and he also seems to have a power, if the tingle of his touch is any indication. It's best to make nice and accept his help. Her small hand accepts his and lets him pull her up onto the bench beside him. She glances at him through the corner of her eyes. "Why do you say lucky?" she asks, curiously, trying to push down the fear that wells up like the tears — she's successful at blinking back the tears, but it's harder to blink away the dread that fills her.

Slowly helping Daphne up, Kazimir offers a thin smile on weathered lips, making she she's seated before he removes his gloved hand from hers. It's odd, the moment his gloved hand is lifted away, her fingers stop tingling. "We are headed towards the Allied forces, you will be reunited with your Americans, yes?" Reaching up to his right arm, Kaizmir slowly pulls off his red armband, throwing it to the back of the truck, then begins unbuttoning his officer's jacket. Daphne notices the other soldiers are doing the same, stipping off badges and pins on their coats, shedding jackets and opening duffel bags with civillian clothing inside to throw on over what they're wearing.

"There is a front of Allied soldiers less than fifty miles southwest of us coming from Dachau," Kazimir's blue eyes settle on Daphne as he sheds his gray jacket, "the war… is over. A week ago you would not have woken up from that field, but I am no longer the man I was, and the country I served has fallen. I am not proud enough to be unable to admit surrender…"

Unshouldering his jacket, Kazimir lays it down carefully next to where Daphne is, then lifts blue eyes to regard her thoughtfully afterward. "Having an American with us will increase the chances that we are not shot on sight, simply for being what we were. If what I have heard of Dachau is correct, even the soldiers who surrendered were executed." There's no emotion in that description, it's as though he's discussing the weather.

"However," Kazimir moves further into the back of the truck, rain running down his shoulders and darkening the fabric of his gray shirt as he reaches for a backpack. "They now have several thousand sick and injured detainees they have liberated, and only so many doctors to go around." A somewhat dirty brown jacket is removed fromt he backpack, shaken out and turned around to be inspected before it's slung over Kazimir's shoulders, "I happen to be an excellent doctor. The rest of these men…" Kazimir waves his hand around to people standing right near him, "they will likely be shot on sight. But you, miss Daphne," he begin approaching where she sits again, "I help you find… what it is you're looking for, and you— you help me. Mutially benificial."

Daphne's eyes are wide, almost black against her pale face. Her hand comes up to pull her ski cap off, now that it's warm enough not to need it. Almost too warm, really, given the fact she dressed for sub-zero weather. Somewhere in the back of her mind, she wishes she'd paid more attention in history class in high school.

Her lip raked by her teeth for a moment, she glances up at him with a slight shake of her head, her eyes tracking the uniform coat set aside and the brown jacket that replaces it. "I… how will they know I'm American? What makes you think they won't shoot all of us on sight?" she asks, not sure how his plan will work. Her eyes narrow and she tilts her head, peering up at him a bit suspiciously. "You said I was alone. How will you help me find what I'm looking for? How do you know what I'm looking for?" Her words are dubious. "You can't … you can't, like, read my mind, can you?" It's a dangerous little probe, but she's either brave or foolish.

That ast question is what actually elicits Kazimir's attention, blue eyes fix on Daphne's darker ones and his brows furrow. Chin tilting up, he watches her quietly for a time before breathing in a deep breath through his nose and exhaling a slow and steady sigh. "The Americans will think you are an Americn, becuase you will tell them you are. You are…" Kazimir motions at her with a gloved hand, lifting up the collar of his jacket against the back of his neck, "an American who had been staying abroad in Paris, yes? Somehow made her way to Germany, lost… friends, a lover?"

Making his way back across the bed of the truck, there's a furrow of the old man's brows. "They will believe you because you are scared, because you are a woman, and because you are injured." Then, letting his thin lips pull back into a smile, Kazimir offers. "Because I am your attendant physician… and can corroberate your story, of how we were captured by the Nazis."

His French is impeccable.

When it comes to instinct, Daphne's repertoire is rather limited. Fight or flight really leaves her with one option most of the time, and fight isn't it. Unfortunately, flight isn't much of an option if she can't put her weight on her injured leg and if Clara and Odessa and Hiro are somehow nearby — a question mark that irritates her. They could very well be back in 2010 on Roosevelt Island where she left them — or rather, where she was flung out of a window and into this nightmare. She nods, slowly.

"Okay," she murmurs, eyes dropping down, hating the two short syllables as they come out of her mouth — he's a Nazi and she's helping him, but it's all about survival. Her brows knit and she looks away, while at the same time testing her injured leg by pressing down the toes within her boot, to see if there's any chance it will bear weight.

There's a look to Daphne for a moment, one of scrutiny and nervousness, and Kazimir's lips pull back into a thoughtful expression after a moment. His head slants to the side, brows furrow and blue eyes scan the blonde American carefully. "You are a very brave young woman," he commends, no sarcasm in his humor less voice, "I apologize for all this."

"Herr Volken, wir sind bereit." One of the young soldiers calls up from the road, having changed into his civillian clothes. Kazimir nods his head and raises a gloved hand to Daphne in apology for his distraction, moving to the tail of the truck and looking over the soldiers gathered there, then furrowing his brows as he offers a clipped and tense question back to the men below.

"Sind die Pfadfinder zurück schon?" There's a look over his shoulder, back to Daphne, then out to the treeline before the young officer who's been sititng quiet this whole time finally gets up and lays down his rifle, starting to shakily take off his jacket and get changed into his civillian clothing.

Moving up to the back of the truck, a soldier in plainclothes nods his head to Kazimir. "Die Amerikaner sind nur zwei Meilen entfernt, sie haben gebildet Lager in Dessau." There's a motion of the soldier's hand pointing down the dirt road, eyes following the direction and then back up to Kazimir as his hand returns to his side.

The old man seems to approve of whatever it is that was said, and slowly turns to look back at Daphne. "You are going to want to reach under your seat, and pull out the large white sheet and the rifle it is tied to." A literal white flag. "I apologize for putting you through this, but it is by ruse alone that you and I will survive the next hour. We will need to walk, together, ahead of the truck."

On her sprained ankle.

"I will help as best as I can…" Kazimir offers in quiet apology, climbing down out of the back of the truck and dropping to the muddy dirt road with a splash of his boots. "Helfen Sie ihr." Kazimir sharply states, motioning up to Daphne as an order to the other soldiers, and two of the men wait at the side of the truck to wait to help her down, as if Kazimir expects her to just follow orders.

The speedster reaches beneath her seat as she is told — her mind turning over the myriad of ways that this can go down, and wishing once more she'd paid more attention to history class, or any of the realistic movies based on World War II, but historic dramas were never her thing. Too much drama and angst in her past as it was. She gives a terse nod, hands wrapped around the rifle as she lets the two men help her down. She bites her lower lip at the touch of their hands on her body. Hands that killed babies, children, helpless men and women, simply because they were different. She has to help them — in order to survive.

Once on the muddy ground, she tests her foot again — if she were to speed away, could she find the Americans herself? Would they simply shoot her once her blur coalesced into a coherent body? Or would she take five steps and simply fall in the mud, inviting the gun shots of the men she's with?

Not a chance she's willing to take.

"Give me a name, a back story so I don't screw up if they interrogate us separately. Kazimir sounds a bit sketchy, you know, if you're s'posed to be French."

Offering a look to Daphne once she's helped down, Kazimir tilts his chin up, eyeing the young blonde thoughtfully. Once more she has said or done something to earn a second assessment, her adaptability seems to be what has his eye now. "Allegre," is the first name off of his tongue, because it is the first name at the back of his mind, "Francois Allegre." He doesn't look like a Francois. "I will need your name as well, miss Daphne. After all, a good physician is aware of his patients…"

Letting Daphne carry the rifle with the flag attached, Kazimir instead stels closer to her, not offering out a hand, but placing one at her back. Through the thickness of her winter jacket, she cannot feel the tingle of proximity of his hand. "You are dressed like someone who has come down from the Netherlands, and… odd styling of clothing. Tell me more about yourself, so that we may assume familiarity. Put your arm around my shoulder," is carefully stayed as he pulls the collar of his jacket up again to hide the back of his neck.

Daphne has a lot of things — adaptability, wit, super speed, baggage — but one thing she doesn't have is a poker face. She does, however, have quick reflexes to recover from the momentary lapse: widened eyes, parted mouth, a slight twitch of the jaw when she hears Francois' name. But certainly it's coincidence — and it's not like Francois is an uncommon French name.

Her face once more what she hopes passes for neutral, if a little tense and nervous, Daphne nods as her mind races to come up with lies that might pass for real in this time and place. "Daphne Miller," she lies, quickly — no time to come up with anything more clever. "I went to France before the war. I … I can't remember how I got to Germany though… the last thing I remember was being in a hospital to… to visit a friend and … and I woke up here." The half-truths are easier to remember than full blown lies.

Daphne pulls off her gloves and shoves them into her coat pocket before putting her arm around his shoulder, as he directs. She looks ahead, biting her lower lip to stave off the wave of fear and hatred that wells up again.

"Miller," Kazimir states with a nod of his head, moving around the side of the truck slowly with Daphne, being mindful of her leg and keeping his pace slow. It may not be out of kindness that he's being so considerate, but that they both share a utility to one another, even if perhaps his reassurances about being able to help her may not be exactly certain.

Treading across the muddy ground, Kazimir nods his head once, slowly. "I knew a man in the army, Timothy Miller, he was an officer— very brave, very headstrong. Cruel, but war breeds cruelty like a wound breeds infection. It is not anything that one man can change, simple account for and react appropriately." Kazimir's head tilts forward as he passes by the open driver's side door of the truck.

"So you, miss Miller, a wayward traveler with a head injury," Kazimir's blue eyes move to the bloody mark still sore on her brow, "have trouble recalling how you came to Germany. Trauma, I will say. Then you need know only what you see and hear, a convenient absence of information to perpetuate a lie." Offering an appreciative smile at that, Kazimir guides Daphne around to the front of the truck, and the driver's side door closes behind them, along with the clatter of soldiers getting into the back.

"You asked me something… back in the truck," Kazimir offers with a slant of blue eyes ot the blonde's far darker ones, "if I could read your mind. Have you ever met someone who could?" It's a scientific curiosity, offered with the unsettling scrutiny of his cold, blue eyes.

"It's a common last name. No relation that I know of," Daphne murmurs, her own real last name less common. Her eyes watch the ground as they begin to move, the one foot held gingerly above ground, the other booted foot squelching in the mud as it hops.

When Kazimir-turned-Francois asks about her question in the truck, her brows furrow again.

"I … just that you seemed to know what I'm looking for, but I don't even know that. It was just a silly phrase … you know, slang? Like, back in America, people will say something, just coincidence — you know? — that the other person is thinking, and we'll say 'Stop reading my mind!' That's all," she explains in her rapidfire way of talking. "The most I've ever gotten is deja vu, myself. No mind reading here." Nope, she's perfectly, extraordinarily ordinary.

"You Americans are a strange lot," Kazimir notes with an owlish tilt of his head to the side, "but I suppose I will acclimate." When they get several paces in front of the truck, the engine roars to life and it begins to slowly creep behind them, jostling and creaking at every dip and rut in the road it hits. "I have never known many, all truths be told, I have never even been to America, the idea is daunting… it is a very foreign place."

Conversational as he leads Daphne down the road, the blonde's arm around his shoulder now feels that pin-prickling sensation of his proximity. "If you believe it, I had met a man who could read minds once. A Russian, but I do not fault him for it, he could see what you were thinking, make you hear voices… truly fantastical things exist in this world that many people refuse to acknowledge at first glance— pass it off as something innocuous."

A Nazi officer daunted by the foreign-ness of the United States — the irony draws a slight snort of a humorless laugh from the speedster who winces slightly as the hopping jars her sore body and injured leg. "You wouldn't like where I'm from, I don't think, then," she says, unaware of the irony of her words.

At the mention of the Russian, she tilts her head and looks at him curiously. "It sounds like something out of one of those science magazines my brother reads," she says in fake skepticism, inventing a false brother on the spot. "What else is possible, that you know of?" Another dangerous little probe — but if Odessa and Hiro aren't here in 1945 with her, she needs to be able to ask someone for help without getting thrown into an insane asylum. "I believe, maybe, in some things… like… like the thing we think are miracles, those of us with faith."

Kazimir lurches to the side, boot sliding in the muddy ground and he's quick to try and recover to brace himself so as to not drop Daphne's weight entirely. After the slip, blue eyes flick over to her over the frames of his glasses, then back to the road. "I believe faith is a handicap for people who are incapable of taking responsibility for themselves…" spoken with the fervor of an athiest, but that isn't entirely surprising given his national allegiances up until what seems to be today.

"But I do believe in the… unusual. I have seen things, miss Miller, that you would not believe. Men who can survive their limbs being removed, women who can sculpt earth and stone with a look the way an artist sculpts clay with their hands, people who can fly. I have seen… so many things." It's a truncated version of the what and an omission of the why, but it is hard to win a person's favor if you tell them you are a mass murderer in the name of science.

"All the miracles in the world could not save Germany from incompetance," Kazimir adds a bit bitterly, looking down that long, winding dirt road. "But few things can be as dangerous as incompetence."

Daphne gasps at the near fall and the recovery, the jerking motions not doing her aching body any favors. She frowns at Kazimir's words, nodding dumbly for a moment. The fact that he seems more bitter at Germany's incompetence rather than the fact that it was led by a madman doesn't escape her notice. "Hindsight's 20/20, I guess. Unless you know anyone who can tell the future, mistakes are going to happen. And I'm willing to bet every possession I own that even if you had someone who could tell the future, things would probably still all end up screwed up," Daphne offers, tone filled with a dry bitterness of her very own.

"You don't … you don't believe in like… someone who can travel …" she snaps her fingers, not wanting to use the word teleportation — does that word exist in 1945, "like, Point A to Point B in an instant?" She really wants to ask about timetravel, but she'll start with just space and keep time out of the equation — for now. "I… I've never seen anyone who could do it," she lies, "but it might explain why I'm not sitting having coffee and looking at the Notre Dame…"

Unless you know anyone who can tell the future, mistakes are going to happen.

Kazimir doesn't quite falter in mid-step, but the notion itself — or at least the part he latches on to — causes him to slowly lift one brow into the air and regard Daphne the one may an unintentional source of inspiration, with both curiosity and intrigue. "You… have a very good point there, miss Miller, very astute observation and I am not being facetious."

Looking ahead to the long road beyond, Kazimir tilts his chin up and looks at the rainy skies, breathing in deeply as they lead the truck full of soldiers past a deadfall tree crushed into the muddy road and the tread marks of what could only have been a tank that must have emerged from the woods at some point. "Someone who can travel vast distances, I've never encountered it, but it does not mean it doesn't exist," he notes with a slant of his head to the side. "I would find someone like that very useful right now, someone who could keep me from having to humilitate myself with the Americans, but unfortunately… I have yet to meet such a fortunate specimen."

Its a dirty word, but an accurate word for Kazimir. It also sets the tone for the rest of the walk, one of awkward silence from too obvious truths.

There's been very few times when Daphne Millbrook was this alone, this lost.

…and this time it isn't a dream.

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