Who: Caspian and Dorian What: Reacting to Hannah’s Death, Safety and Reassurance When: Late morning, September 1, 2019 [backdated] Where: Marketplace, then Finn house Rating: Medium Status: Complete!
It had happened again, but this time it was a resident not a guard. They were getting closer. ‘Retribution’ - Dorian was keeping an eye out as he walked through the Marketplace. Surveillance was something he was good at. Fear welled up inside at the details of how Hannah Ryers was found made its way to his ears.
Worried about Caspian, Laura, Caitlyn, and the little one that was on its way, the young man silently asked Caspian where he was. They needed to talk.
Where I always am. You know where to find me. He never strayed far from his home, the base of operations for their scheme. There would be no surprises this time, no guards sneaking up on him or his family. The plan was to coerce the neighbors to keep a lookout, to rise up and defend if it came to that. Slowly he and Laura were putting that plan into motion.
”Are you Alright?” His worry was apparent.
Dorian exhaled the breath he had been holding as he walked briskly to the Finn house. Hearing Caspian’s voice in his head was always a comfort, a light in the darkness.
Yes. There has been another murder and another word left behind. Dorian replied, his own worry simmering underneath the flatness. Soon he stepped inside the house, looking over his shoulder before closing and locking the door behind him.
’That is beneficial to our cause. Don’t fret, you know we have too much at stake to risk any of us. If they come, we won’t go down easy.’
Caspian was settled in an easy chair in the living room. He heard the door close but wasn’t surprised at all that it was Dorian. He didn’t move to stand, merely sat where he’d been.
Dorian walked into the living room, his brown eyes dark with worry. His heart thumped hard in his chest at Caspian’s saying ‘we won’t go down easily’.
Circling the sofa, he sat down on the end closest to the other man. “This time it was one of us. And the word left was ‘retribution’.” The young man spoke darkly as he recalled the description of Hannah’s body - hospital gown, beaten, face smashed, a wire protruding from her neck. Would that had been Dorian’s fate if Xaspian and Laura had not come for him?
“Was she one of us?” He inquired, blue eyes casting up toward Dorian. While he was partial to the residents he set himself and those he took in apart from the flock. Those he chose were better than the rest. It wasn’t as if he felt Hannah deserved her fate but she was simply a victim, a pawn in the larger board game.
This was merely a game of cat and mouse to him.
He breathed, his fingers curling lightly as his hands rested on his knees. The question has he staring Caspian in the eye. He understood, but was still fearful. “One was an ability, yes. They may have experimented on her. It may be only a matter of time.” Dorian had been much more tense since the abduction and rescue. He had not seen anyone else on the island with ‘ power negation’ listed on their ID.
They couldn’t save everyone. There had to be victims, same as in New York. He was sure that had he known Hannah there would’ve been a larger stake but as it was he felt indifferent to her passing. “Indeed.” He was aware she had abilities, or at least that was what he’d gathered from the situation.
“Should they come for us we shall be prepared for a war.” From beneath the chair Caspian slipped two knives from beneath the cushion, which were offered to Dorian. “Take these. It’ll be almost like home.” He had coerced a guard to give them to him.
Dorian was still trying to find a life or more happiness while on the island, but was failing beyond more books to read. It was hard since he didn’t feel safe enough to sit and read somewhere other than the Finn house. Vigilance and fear kept him busy day and night. That one word response made him still and then remember how things had been in New York. Caring beyond the Finns was something the young man naturally did and it had been revived during his time on the island.
Nodding, he listened. His eyes widened at Caspian presenting him the knives. Dorian took them graciously and slipped them under his pant legs and into his boots. “Thank you,” He whispered. The razor blade remained in the folded cuff of his right sock. Always be prepared, prepared for anything. “Have you made a plan on how to get you, Laura, and Caitlyn off the island?” Dorian spoke in a normal volume.
Caapian looked out for his own. It had been the same for his gang back in New York. Hell’s Kitchen held a plethora of dangerous people masked in the elite, posh appearance. They’d been amongst those privileged and even then he’d taken prisoners only when it mattered.
“Keep those to yourself unless you’ve good reason,” his voice expressed, low in tone. Hushed.
Upon mention of the plan Caspian nodded. “Mm. We are going to build an army. Slowly, albeit swiftly, winning our neighbors over with kindness. I can read their minds, they’re all afraid. They’re more likely to follow someone they trust.”
Dorian felt steady in New York. There was the routine. He knew the lay of the land and exactly how things were at Caspian’s side. Here he still felt unsure.
A nod would be given.
Dorian blinked. “How slowly and how swiftly?”
“Soon we will start our attempts to win their hearts,” Cas explained. “Laura and I shall go. Door to door, however long that shall take. It could take the rest of the month, it could go swifter. It all depends on how the neighbors react to us.” They were a charming couple, Laura was obviously carrying a child too their benefit.
“I’ll keep you in the loop, of course.” Dorian was his second in command and that hadn’t changed with their relocation. He was family first, but right now they were talking business.
Resting his elbows on his knees for a few moments, Dorian listened. It was good Laura felt like getting out and helping. But he was protective of her and the baby. Yet he trusted Caspian.
“Thank you.” Dorian sighed. But the fear still remained underneath the surface. “How can I make our departure from this place sooner?”
“Intel. We need to find weaknesses in the system,” Caspain explained. “Guards who can be swayed, residents willing to risk their lives for big jobs that might require a bit of power. Sometimes sacrifice is necessary to gain momentum.”
It sounded cold, perhaps it was, but his family mattered to him above anyone.
They could only hide the baby for so long before it became too obvious - too unmistakable. He would rather take the risk that the neighbors knew and would help protect than leave it a mystery and have no one come if things got hairy.
“I fear the guards have become hostile the last few months.” Dorian nodded. He was willing to sacrifice to get the Finn family away from here. He had sacrificed to get Caspian out of confinement. He just hoped that he wasn’t forced to use his ability against Caspian or Laura.
“Then we need to put them back into place. Same thing we did with the police and the FBI when they stepped out of line.” They’d been up against worse than a few guards. But this time they weren’t alone. There were hundreds of unsatisfied residents here worth the taking.
None would touch any of them as long as he was concerned. He knew his time would be limited once his ability came into play but any pain or discomfort was worth the risk to save his family.
“I wish my ability was more useful,” Dorian spoke. Telepathy, pyrokinesis, lycanthropy - those were better to fight with. His own ability could be a terrible liability.
“How could your ability not be useful?” He inquired, leaning toward his friend with interest. Of course he was aware of the implications. Caspian was resourceful, though. “You’re just as useful as anyone else, the same as always.”
He had done his best to teach Dorian that there was more to life than abilities. You couldn’t always win a fight with exceptional abilities and Caspian bore the scars to prove it. It was why he’d become proficient with a weapon.
Dorian breathed and nodded. Perhaps in a fight with some with an ability. “Yes, as always.”
He hadn’t had a physical weapon on him until after the abduction. Having a pair of knives made him feel a little more secure. He bore the scars as well - mentally and physically. “I’m anxious for us to go home.” He spoke.
“As are we all, love. We shall get there but acting too quickly, without a plan, means that none of us will ever make it out of here alive. We must bide our time, much like a snake hiding in the grass. Strike when the time is right.”
If Dorian was found with the knives things could turn sour but that was the risk they took. Caspian had felt bare without his Ruger but that wouldn’t be the case much longer.
Bowing his head, Dorian nodded. He often felt anxious about this place, but he had his missions - intel and protect the Finns (especially Laura and Caitlyn). Whatever he needed to do to make sure Caspian’s plan flourished.
He would not carry the knives every day and find out which guards, if any, were swayable.
That nod was met with another, one of acceptance and agreement. It was rare they argued - Dorian had every right to speak up and out about a plan and Caspian was willing to listen the same way he listened to Laura’s input on things.
“Keep me updated.” That was all he said about it, leaving the conversation there. “Can I get you anything?”
Dorian rarely spoke up or argued with a plan. The most he had til now was after the time the two of them nearly died from gunshot wounds in Hell’s Kitchen.
“Yes.” Lifting his head, he looked over at Caspian. “No, I’m okay.”
That was sufficient enough for now. He trusted Dorian with his life and the lives of his family. There was no reason not to. A smile would come to his face and Caspian felt satisfied with the outcome of the conversation.
“Alright then,” he replied. “Then don’t let me keep you, my friend, if there are other matters which may need your attention more.”
Dorian returned the smile, always comforted by the other man’s smile. Yes, he would do anything for Caspian and his family. He had done so many times before.
“Confirming the safety of this family was my utmost concern.” Dorian spoke.
While he hadn’t meant in a sense of business, as leisure tended to be just as important, Caspain was grateful for the company. “Yours and mine, darling.” They tended to be like minded when it came to what was important.
Leisure was less likely these days especially due to this morning’s event. Dorian was finding it hard to trust more people. “Always,” he breathed as he sat back a little. There was a lot of ground to cover when it came to finding out if any of the guards were swayable. The young man would do his part so Caspian’s plan would work.
Some were likely to be swayed, tempted, easier than others. Caspian could change their minds without a second of resistance while it might take someone like Dorian longer to gain that upper hand. The guards varied in age, many were afraid of being killed next.
“What else is on your mind these days?” While they had a connection he did his best to stay out of Dorian’s business and give the man privacy.
Dorian wanted to be more persuasive like Caspian. But he lacked the ability. And utilizing the seductive skills he had used on Roman wasn’t something he liked to do. But in that instance, it was to help free Caspian. Changing a guard’s mind was going to be a challenge using words alone.
He shook his head. “It’s hard to trust people for more than just friendship.” It was a confession that would have been easy for the other man to gleam.
Caspian listened to his friend’s plight. Frowning, he nodded. “Indeed. It seems that way, doesn’t it? Challenging to find someone who would invest themselves in you, and not what you can do.” He had seen the way Ehren had treated Dorian during their time together, knew exactly what had been the intent of the relationship. But not everyone had an ultimatum.
“Not everyone is out to satisfy themselves on your behalf, though. What of that wolf fellow?”
Dorian nodded. He would be used if it was his choice and that he knew of the intention. But not if it wasn’t mutual. He feared and hated the idea. It brought up pain of the times he was used before Caspian freed him.
The younger man breathed and shook his head before looking over at Caspian. “I think the wolf is with someone already.”
“Do you know for sure?” Cas inquired, leaning forward a bit. “I could change his mind for you.” The last part was meant to be a tease but he was mostly serious. Whatever it took to make Dorian happy.
“Do you still talk to each other? Perhaps it’s time to catch up.”
“Ehren was desperate for me to testify, to help free Logan.” Dorian spoke and then he glared at Caspian. “I rather you didn’t.” Manipulating someone was the last thing he wanted in order to be with someone.
“I haven’t seen him since the trial.” He shrugged and leaned back fully to rest against the sofa.
“Perfect time to catch up, then, yes?” If they hadn’t seen each other since then that meant there was plenty to catch up on. “I would never tamper with anyone you held close, don’t worry.” That glare was nearly amusing.
He leaned backward again, relaxing against the seat. “Let me know what happens, won’t you?”
“If he and I cross paths, we will talk,” Dorian replied. Logan and he barely talked the last time they had an opportunity.
“You may know as soon as I will.” He added.
A nod would come. It was refreshing to see Dorian get defensive and worked up - he liked to see these harder emotions, it meant he still had that passion to protect. The response was good enough for him and he would let it be out of respect. He’d always been of the idea of taking what he wanted and it seemed that hadn’t left him.
“What are you reading lately? The same things? Anything new?”
Dorian could be quite defensive. He fought to stay out of the situations he had found himself before, the situation he had blamed himself for falling into. Control was something he needed. Caspian was someone he was indebted to and respected. He sometimes pushed back, but eventually and willfully relinquished the control.
“I haven’t found anything new.”
That spark was what Cas was after. That jump to defense, to protect. It would be the thing that would allow Dorian to supersede him once Caspian was no longer around or able to look after his flock.
“Why not? Are the resources here so limited or do they not have what you’re seeking?” That was a genuine question, one offered with interest.
Dorian wouldn’t want to move past Caspian. But he would do whatever it took to protect Caspian, to further their plan. He was the same man who dragged the other man to safety after the both of them were shot and bleeding out.
“I haven’t been looking as much. I can sit around and read forever.”
The answer was simple and Caspian nodded. “I see. It isn’t a bad thing at all to get caught up in a book now and then.” More people should in his opinion. Himself included, but he had larger things at hand to deal with.
“I don’t feel comfortable reading outside,” Dorian confessed. But he also nodded. The abduction and almost experimentation had rattled him. So paranoid and vigilance had increased.
Caspian understood why without having to read between the lines - you could get caught by surprise with your nose in a book. He would’ve been wary, too. There was no blame at all, and he was glad Dorian was staying vigilant.
“I don’t blame you. Probably better to do that indoors where other people you trust are.”
Dorian loved the outdoors with the fresh air, breeze, and open spaces. But he was prey out there more times than not. Perhaps the knives would help just by having them on his person.
“Yeah. Not many people I trust. There are some out there.”
“If I can help please tell me. And if there are others who can sit with you while you read that would be good as well.” He was concerned, worried for his friend.
“Please be safe out there.”
“I don’t think there’s anything you can do right now. I’ll read here in the house or in the library where Finn Thompson works.” Dorian hadn’t found any since of comfortable permanency on the island.