Ehren didn’t like coming out to the shack, he didn’t even really like going anywhere too far away from the central area of the island but he was with the faction for a reason and he wasn’t just going to sit by while terrible things happened to good people. He left his cell phone back at his apartment and anything that could be tracked as he made his way through the woods. He’d had a really rough day and this dark scary place was the crap cherry on top.
When he found the shack he made his way inside and let out breath he didn’t know he’d been holding in and tried to focus on normalizing his breathing. This would all be for nothing he slipped into vision before he got a chance to talk to anyone.
The Manx cat ‘Mew’ sat in the corner, waiting. He didn’t want to change until he was sure everything was clear. When he heard the
footsteps he got into all fours, waiting and ready. Fur bristling. Then, the familiar face entered and he relaxed. The shack was small, an abandoned tool shed- or something similar. There was a table and two chairs, about an inch of dust and spiderwebs. Under one of the floor panels a duffle sat with medical supplies and emergency rations- just in case.
Once the room was secure Fitz meowed to alert Ehren of his presence and then changed into the brown haired man. He was a bit more put together than the last time the other man had seen him. He had pants that actually fit and he was clean shaven. He looked more tired than before, but other than that- he was much less ‘hobochic’ than he’d been. “Good to see you.” He said with a small smile as he moved over to the chairs to take a seat, sliding his backpack from his shoulders. It was a nice benefit of his power- things he carried on him sort of changed with him. So, he could have a backpack and clothes and not have to worry about losing them when he ‘went kitty’.
Sitting in the seat opposite Ehren was a little shocked at first until he remembered Fitz and what his ability is. “Likewise.” He replied, taking a moment to take a deep breath before he spoke his words. “I have a lot to tell you. I was detained today. They got some pictures of me following some people. They didn’t have enough evidence though so they let me go. I’m freaking out man, I’ve never been detained before.”
He put his head in his hands as he thought of the long tortuous hours in that room. He honestly thought he might even die in that room. Thankfully it was only his anxiety and he was released after a few hours. “Also, I met a girl on the beach. Her name is Hannah Ryers. Her ID says she’s a government employee but it looks as if they’re doing experiments on her. Something about code and being put in ‘the cloud’ or something like that. We have to help her get out of that, you can tell she’s pretty weak at this point, who knows how bad it’ll be in a month or a year.”
It felt good to get all that out but it seemed that he might have prematurely blew his load. Fitz could help things get set into motion and he wasn’t going waste time with pleasantries.
He reached out and placed a hand on Ehren’s arm, his fingers feeling of a soft fur- despite appearing as skin. Side effect of being a cat for so long- along with his now enhanced canines. “I’m sorry.” Fitz said softly, being detained was one of his greatest fears. Not only would it mean he’d failed at keeping secret, but also it would put Kyrie in danger- and now Ben. “Are you okay?” He knew that Faction members had to be tough. By joining they were taking a risk. Not everyone knew who every member was- for their own safety, and those who knew others depending on each other to keep their involvement a secret. Even if caught. But even so, being taken in for questioning could be traumatic.
As for the government employee. “I think I’ve seen her before. She tends to keep to herself when she comes into town, occasionally has drinks with a Jakob Hale.” A man who had caught Kyrie’s eye. ” And socializes with a few others. But from the few times I’ve been able to overhear stuff, she doesn’t normally open up about much.” He pondered the implications of what she’d told Ehren. “They definitely are getting more and more creative with their tortures, that’s for sure.” He made a face, recalling the memory of the recordings plaguing Daryn.
“I’m ok I guess.” He replied, flinching a little bit at the feeling of fur on his arm. It wasn’t something that he could see himself getting used to. The whole place gave him the creeps if he was honest though it seemed it was safer to come here than anywhere else on the island.
“I think she had just come out of this box she was talking about. She seemed confused, like she wasn’t oriented to real life yet. I think it’s bad, Fitz. She needs to be removed, as soon as humanly possible.” And he wanted to be the one to help her. Maybe he could meet with her again and try to conjure some sort of vision to see what would happen to her.
Fitz nodded, pulling back his hand, his mutation wasn’t something he could feel himself and not touching a lot of people, he tended to forget. “So, we investigate, figure out what exactly’s going on, and make a plan.” That they could do. “I can drop a note to a couple people to have them try to keep an eye- in shifts… don’t want you or anyone else getting picked up for tailing anyone again. And of course letting the boss know… something you should do.” He tilted his head slightly. “I can drop a note for you if you want. Or, if you want more info first. Vet her.” As best they could.
He had experience, private security and his time in the Army combined, he knew how to evaluate a situation. Part of him was concerned about her earnesty. He wouldn’t put it past the government to try to plant someone vulnerable to infiltrate their ranks. But at the same time he didn’t want to turn his back on someone who needed help. So, they just had to be careful.
Another thing crept into his mind. Daryn told Ehren to get out of the faction, that they couldn’t help him just like they didn’t help her. “Have you spoken to Daryn?” He asked, more curious than anything else what his thoughts were on the whole situation. They’d let her go at the hospital and she seemed more nervous than even himself.
“I saw her briefly and she didn’t seem well. Has anyone helped her?” Of course it had to be tricky because they were tailing her, and now Ehren too probably. “I’ll talk to the boss, I’m sure Hannah’s abilities could actually help to aid us. She has a link to communication and that could help us reach more people.” Maybe even someone from the outside who could be an ally.
Fitz nodded. “I have. I’ve tried. They were pumping her apartment with a recording she thought was in her head. Every hour it told her she was alone and should end it all.” He’d released a copy of it on the network and the mayor tried to write it off as it having all been in her head. How could they record something someone was telepathically transmitting? “We had someone track down the speakers and kill them. I’m not sure if they’ve tried to fix them or not.” He felt guilt over how long she’d been taken and tortured for. How he couldn’t find her- no one had been able to. Maybe someone working on the inside was exactly what they needed.
Ehren shook his head. It was disgusting what the government was doing. He couldn’t bare to talk about her but it lingered in the back of his mind. What was she not telling him that made her want to tell Ehren to get out. Maybe Fitz had something to do with it or maybe he didn’t. He’d have to speak with her again, alone this time.
“So you’ll find someone to watch her and I can get some more information. I’ll let the boss know and then we can meet again, do some planning.” He repeated. It was important that he get the information right the first time because they might not be able to speak again for a while.
“Sounds like a plan.” Fitz said with a nod. It was nice to actually contribute to a plan. Save for when a Faction telepath was involved (which were few), he never really participated in planning things. Granted many times he was given updates and information through cat visits. It wasn’t actually strange to see someone talking sweetly to a kitty cat. People rarely actually listened to what someone was saying and always assumed it was ‘what a pretty kitty’ and the like. “And you know I’m all over if you need anything. Just look for any of the strays on the island- it’s me.”
He nodded to that, bringing his fingernails to his lips to gnaw on them a little. A nervous habit, because he was nervous. This was a dangerous mission but it could be their best chance at actually making some sort of change on this island. “Thank you.” He said to the offered help. Ehren hadn’t really spearheaded a project like this before, he was usually just the person to give them intel.
“You can let me know if you find out anything, right?” He asked, since he’d never gotten this close to the action before.
“Of course.” Fitz chuckled. “This is your contact. I’m just an advisor.” Which sounded better than ‘spy’. Which is really what he did. He nodded and picked up his backpack. “I’ll let you know what I find out. You let me know if you need anything.” He stood up and pulled his bag over his shoulders. “And… thanks for checking on Daryn. They really did a number on her… and I’m just not sure how else to help.” He was limited. He was trying. Part of him just wanted to maul the mayor and be done with it. But he was smarter than that.
He’d been cautious when he set up this meeting, especially when Daryn had told him to get out and run away, but Fitz’s help eased his mind a bit. There was no trusting anyone on this Island, even those who were on your side, but if it meant helping those he needed it, Ehren would trust his other faction colleagues. “She’s my friend, and she was my doctor. I can’t believe they took that away from her.” He said merely and stood from where he’d sat. He’d be glad to get out of this musty old shack at least as he made his way to the door. “Until next time.” He said as he opened the door to the woods outside.
Fitz nodded and gave him a small, casual salute. “See you around.” And with that, the man was replaced by the small manx stray cat named ‘Mew’. All clothes, the backpack, any sign there had been a man standing there was gone- save for the footprints in the dust, which the cat’s tail casually swept away. As the other man left, the cat followed- before vanishing into some brush.