(2019-03-26) The Briefing
The Briefing
Summary: Later in the evening, Callisto goes to report Schuyler's findings to Unit 23.
Date: 2019-03-26
Related: The same day as this log, hours later into the evening.
NPCs: Various.
Scene Runner: NA

Winbarry Estate
Tue Mar 26, 2019

This old Georgian/Colonial mansion is in a current state of repair. Being structurally sound, it's not at it's former prettiness….yet.. New paint helps, but anyone that knows houses can see it's still in desperate need of a new roof.

The grounds have recently been serviced. Nothing fancy, but the grass is cut, weeds have been pulled and the trees are not growing wild any longer., Large trees are sprinkled around the 13 acre estate. The back yard is expansive, an over grown garden with paths that have been long covered up and statues that have claimed by vines. Seems the gardener has not gotten to the backyard just yet. The entire estate is surrounded by a wrought iron fence. A pea-gravel driveway leads to a newer garage building.

It is a spring evening. The weather is cool and clear.


Inferno isn't happy, but when is the lava man? When Callisto approached him, he grumbled, pulled her from class and took her back to the Estates on teh back of his motorcycle. He's very…warm. Thankfully it's cool outside. Waiting is most of the rest of Unit 23. The original members anyway. The add ons are at their jobs. They're all waiting n the room that's normally locked and closed off to students. It's clearly their mission room, a very large map of the city is laid out and there's already come pins in it.

Let's just say Callisto made good on her intention to inform the Unit on the recent discoveries surrounding their missing speedster. The moment she departed breakfast and sought out Inferno, before she knew it she was being hauled out of classes and taken… oh. Oh my.

Enter: Callisto's first time ever on the back of a motorcycle. Oddly enough the look suits her, but she spent most of the drive clinging to whatever safe measure she could find on the Unit leader's person until they made it to the estate. She's dressed practically: fitted black pants, a marching overcoat and hair still braided. She follows along in the lava man's wake, but she's not demure or skulking as she has been here as of late. She enters the room and gives everyone a solemn, anxious glance.

"He's been found." Said smoothly as she sets down her bag. "I've details to share."

There's steam rising from the leader's body, he's been having harder and harder time keeping human form lately. He just wants to see Daxton home before…well, before. The lava man moves over to the table, hand already raising to cut off the rapid fire questions that start to spew from Pulse's mouth. A jaw clench and the speedster goes quiet. AfterThought though, moves over to Callisto and holds out a hand.

Naturally it's Pulse around whom the willowy fey girl feels anxious.. and she's not so dumb or naive as to wonder why. Poor Wendy. Callisto knows deep in her heart the feelings of the female speedster toward Daxton; how it must have felt to sit through Rebecca and now this. So Callisto cuts Pulse some slack; lets the other woman loathe her. Unless the fiery Latina says something too out of turn.

But then there's AfterThought… who happened to be Oridove's 'favorite' and now Callisto can see why. She reaches out to take their hand and give it a firm squeeze, drawing comfort from the contact. She will go into the room then and either seat herself to take up a position near the wall.. however best ot convey what she has to share.

Callisto looks first to Inferno to make sure it's time for her to speak up… last thing she wants to do, to cut the fiery man off.

Inferno flops down, bits of black ash fall to the ground as he rubs his forehead, "Tell them. Everything." The other two members go quite, waiting to hear what the elf has to say.

Given permission, Callisto turns her sleek-haired head to the awaiting team members, "My finding him on the dreamplain a few weeks ago alluded to Daxton having been addled… and that he was likely coming to Shady Cove. To 'search'." She recaps swiftly, does not fidget. Her hands are clasped in front of her abdomen as if she is to give a presentation. Callisto no longer ears the gorgon pendant and her gaze is clear, level and beseeching. A pause, "On Sunday evening a friend and peer of mine encountered Daxton in downtown Shady Cove." Said firmly, pushing the point home. Callisto studies each face as she lets it sink in.

"He was forceful with a one Schuyler Masters but did not hurt him… just mussed up his clothing. Schuyler spoke of it not seeming as if he desired to cause bodily harm. He was searching for Winbarry, asked Schuyler of it's whereabouts. The Masters boy did not give him an answer. He also suspected Daxton of speaking into an earpiece."

Her brow furrows and her eyes look hurt, sad. "Schuyler is also a mentalist, he tried to skim Daxton's mind but found.. nothing. Nothing recognizable as him, as we know him. We both suspect that his mind has indeed been wiped.. reset… but the most harrowing thing is that he is coming for your Unit." Said softly.

Afterthought's hands do clasp, the goth is so worried. "Did he look the same? Injured or…different?" Is that important? Pulse though, she immediately latches onto the other detail, "He's not alone." Inferno huffs, "Him coming for us isn't a surprise." It's not? "After returning to base, he'd be ordered to bring us back or eliminate us. He's still…Tempo. He's going to want us to come back. He's most likely been pumped full of the control drug." Unconsciously, the other two Unit 23ers run their arms where they've been injected in the past.

"I am told he looks healthy… much like himself as you know him but not. Upon returning to base… he will have been conditioned, surely. And—" Pause, she looks pained. "The.. c-control drug?" She asks; here, her resolve cracks a bit. Needles? Was he strapped down and injected again? Cerulean eyes watch the Unit members touch their arms and her stomach drops. A deep breath as she listens to Inferno and awaits a proper moment to add, "So.. t'is not a form of mind control as per the whim of a strong mentalist? T'is literally a chemical?" Callisto asks softly, desiring confirmation. That may affect what she and sky spitballed.

Her gaze alights upon Inferno, "Is this a drug that needs to be re-administered? Will it wear off if he is kept away from base?"

Callisto looks worried but her tone is sound, "He was cleancut and looked stronger on the dream plain. I hazard to guess that he is much of the same in town. In.. town.." Could she search for him?

Pulse spits out, not really at Callisto, it's just a hard topic for any of them, "It's how they conditioned us. Drug us up and then fuck with our heads." Afterthought nods, voice quieter. Poor AT went through more than just that, but also knows it's not a competition. "They may have a mentalist that's doing the conditioning…none of us were particularly aware when it happens." The question that's directed at Inferno though has them all turning their eyes towards him, "…Yes, eventually. But it depends on how much they gave him. And if he's with another unit…they could be required to administer it to each other." Twisted!

A flinch.. Callisto has to lower herself to sit. "Tell me what I can do." She implores, looking to each member and finally back to Inferno. "He saw me as an enemy, as if I were a witch… he would know me to see me as such, as a direct line to your team." It's clearly troubling her to say this, but she's willing to but anything on the table to help bring him back. She listens to each member's recollection, her pale gaze alighting upon them as they speak. Inferno's lattermost statement — administering to each other — causes the girl to visibly startle.

"May I be used to draw him out? I spoke at length with Schuyler… if there is anything he and I can do, if he is secured.. t-to help with his mind… we can do that too." She watches Inferno. "I am unafraid. I can go out anytime.. if that will aide with anything. I am not trying to be a martyr, I merely wish.." For him back with her, too.. but she leaves the sentimentality out of it. ".. for him to be back in the right fold. With you. Safe."

Inferno rubs his face again. "Well…it's you or us. It doesn't sound like he's got any other leads." Pulse interrupts, "He's going to try to talk us down, or immobilize. He may have been given our trigger words. It's going to have to be her." At looks like they want to argue that, but can't. Instead the mentalist says, 'We need to worry of who he is working with as well. They may be just as dangerous. The other Units' powers are unknown."

Other Units. Callisto considers this… "Maybe… I can try to see into his mind," If she manages to. What would Daxton do if he finds her? Attack? Contain? "All I would need is one clear moment… in knowing him to be under the influence of another Unit, maybe I can dredge up an immediate memory.. a face… a name… I cannot bear the thought of more of these trigger words coming to light. They can do nothing to me and pray, I can do this." Callisto insists.. agreeing with Pulse. "Whether to draw him out, figure out what we can do for Daxton.. OR get an idea on which Unit this is… I will do my best." To glean information and yes… ideally.. not be trounced.

Callisto refrains from asking the dumb question of how many Units 'are there' .. 23? Beyond that number? The look is in her eyes though.

Inferno stands, "Where did the Masters kid see him again?" He grabs a pin to place on the map. "You might just have to start wandering after school." With Unit 23 trailing her! "I want you to gather a group to go with you. I'll approve the students after you gather them." He doesn't want her alone. Something about this seems to get the other two moving. AT asks, "Perhaps Felicia can accompany her? Tempo will not recognize her." Pulse nothing, but glowers down at the map, fist clenching.

"Downtown, in the heart of Shady Cove. Main street." Callisto recalls, trying to piece together Sky's words. "Early evening before curfew… from what Schuyler had told me." She clarifies, standing slowly and clasping her hands together in that ponderous way again. When bid to gather others to help out, Callisto bows her head to concede to the orders. "Of course." She agrees.. Schuyler for one. She nods quickly when Felicia is mentioned, agreeing easily to this notion as well.

"It shall be done. Is there anything else you require of me?" Callisto asks onwards, already putting a plan in motion in her mind.

Inferno pushes the pin in, maybe a little too hard as the top of it melts. "No. One of you get her home. I need to make some phone calls." Oh boy, that's how her got the iron dust bomb! Not even giving Pulse the chance, AT steps up, "Let us go. You should not be alone outside of the school for now." A hand motion towards the door, time to let Pulse and Inferno plot. "I have made muffins, if you would like one before you go?"

The willowy girl does not dispute this either. Fates above she prays this works out… for the best case of course, but something tells her it's going to be a hard road. Inferno speaks of making… 'plans'… and you bet your bippy that's where Callisto's mind goes. His plans were what offed her mother. Mercifully it's AT who steps up to help Callisto return home; were it Pulse the fey girl would likely be floating face up in the harbour.

"I should like, very much, to have a muffin before we go." Somewhere across the miles, Oridove suffers a pang of jealousy. Spoken in a softer voice as they depart, "Thank you for your kindness. Always the kindness."

AfterThought smiles in that slightly detached, but completely paying attention way they have, "It is the only think that they could not take away from me." Yikes. "Come. And then I will drive you to the ferry. I hope you like cinnamon."

What did these people do.. to them? Callisto feels a lurch in her chest at the androgynous Unit member's words. "I am sorry… so profoundly sorry.. for all that you've gone through. Each of you." She means every word. "I rather love cinnamon." Says the girl, completely earnest, as they make for a side-stop in the kitchen. It would be nice to have some comfort food on her very, very anxious belly. Will she be able to keep it together upon seeing Daxton again, and the potential aggression to follow?

Dark eyes turn to just look at Calli. "It isn't your fault." The soft smile returns, "Good. I have many muffins." AT's used to baking for two speedsters…. "Let us fill your belly. Would you like tea as well?"

She softens considerably.. just to hear that SOMETHING isn't her fault feels good. Though there is no way she could have been behind what happened to these people… no.. she was just indirectly involved in sending one of them — the one she adored most of all — back to that hell. Damn Malachite! Damn her Mother to the realms beyond hell!

The sizzling unrest is quelled instantly by AT's voice. "Tea would be.. most well-received. I have not eaten since this morning." Said ruefully, as if she is just realizing it herself. So many questions. What had AfterThought's name been, before… this? Questions.

To the kitchen they go, the tall mentalist will move around gracefully, shadow tendril splinter off like extra arms to gather the muffin, butter, and put a kettle of water on the stove. AT hums, stand-in there like a conductor as their shadow limbs do all the work. "You must eat. You will do Tempo no good if you are frail."

Fascinating. Shadowmancer. But at the same time AT's usage of shadows differs from that of her spirit brother, Brier. Cerulean eyes watch the tendrils move and sway, articulate in their performing of tasks. Callisto is totally being served a pick-me-up by a shadow arm! Her look of amazement is profound, mouth opening to pose a question that dies upon her lips. Anyone with an empathic sense or similar may feel a profound sense of intrigue on Callisto's part.. but no fear. "Where.. do you remember much about your past life, AfterThought? Before any of this? I'm trying to understand more.. about this Unit. I feel as if I am treading the length of a tripwire and one wrong step, somebody is hurt. I am still troubled at the thought of this… these injections that meant control." She would do Tempo no good if she were… frail..?

She didn't do the boy much good, at this rate.. but Callisto catches herself, breathing in through her nostrils and enjoying the scent of baking.

"Oh…no. I remember nothing." Is that true? It's so hard to say with as quickly as AT moves past that topic, "It is also how they unlocked many of our powers. They evolved at the same time, so they feel…dependent on each other." The powers and the obedience. "I know that Tempo used to say the drug felt as if it was burning him. To me it always felt ….cold. Perhaps that is our genetics?"

The faerie, bless her, does not push. Merely nods.. if she noticed the hasty skirting of the topic she neither lets on, nor does she press. A briefly aghast look; you can bet she's picturing it. Daxton sped off like an automaton from Cedar Island, but how aware was he when they re-administered the drug? Did he fight it? Did he suffer? She remembers his nightmares; he and Pulse restrained and in agony. Did that happen again

Things never used to hurt like this before. Callisto, upon receiving the muffin, bites into it immediately and chews fast, swallows to hit that lump in her throat. "It must have been… it could have been for a great many reasons. I pray that it shall be a thing of distant memory, never again a threat, once Tempo is found… saved…" It's a long shot, especially if there are more Units.

"I will do my best to fix this. I swear it." Callisto says softly.. it's become her mantra. "I did not like how he looked upon me as if I were an enemy. The look frightened me."

AfterThought turns and studies her a long moment, "This would ahem happened to one fo us, eventually. It is not your fault. It is your mother's." A cup is set inform of her, for the water when it gets hot enough, "Tempo is someone to be fearful of."

"And she is gone. Forever." Callisto whispers, regarding her mother. She tilts her head down and looks at the empty cup. One gift from her mother, if it could be called such, is the sort of regal bearing that the girl seems to exude.. even in sitting, mulling. She lifts her head and watches AfterThought much as s/he watches her. "Thank you." A whisper, as she considers.

"I've no doubt.. but I should like to see Daxton back. Tempo may yet be him, and part of him forever.. but there is that part of him.. that big part that I pray we can bring back. I fear, too, that your Pulse shall never look upon me favorably. She harbours feelings for him that have been unrequited for so very long. I can sense this." Said in a whisper.

A gentle staring contest of sorts happens. AT doesn't dispute the Daxton vs Tempo, they are both the same to them. "Pulse and Tempo are very close." There's a small blink, "And why do you believe they are unrequited? He loved her, he just does not remember. They ran so many moments together, Callisto….You must understand she misses him."

"Of course I do." Callisto says softly, "Understand, that is. How could I not?" It's the Light side of her that feels this pang of jealousy.. but it's squashed. Were she full Dark like her sister — and as hedonistic — it wouldn't matter. She wouldn't have even stuck around. Now so many things make sense.

"Mayhaps it is the both of them who are meant to be together." Callisto says gently, clearing her throat. "I may be another to be resigned to memory, or something to be forgotten, depending upon how we get him back to us.. what must happen with his mind. T'is not what I desire to do.. I am not making light of my own feelings in this but.. AfterThought…" She looks up at them.

"Speaking as one who loves Daxton, as I know you do. What.. do you think is best?"

The goth actually smiles, "I would hope that you would allow Tempo to make that decision, not your…worry." Whatever AT believes, they keep to themselves. "He has a big heart. It will help lead him to where he should be. You must have faith in that. In his heart."

"Oh, but I do." Callisto whispers. "Have faith in his heart, and him." That's a heavy admittance from someone of her ilk, or at least partially. She will simply have to trust the process.. grow with it, or from it. Much as she had done with her previously personal question re: AT's past, Callisto does not persist in this vein of conversation. It's amazing how flustered it makes her feel. She thinks back to her talk with Oridove, just after she found Tempo on the dream plain.

'I do not envy you,' The imperious elder fae remarked loftily those days ago, her quasi-British accent not making the phrase sound any warmer. 'I would have departed long ago. Started yet another new life. But oh, sister, you've that other blood about you.' So callous, but it was — still is — all that a bonefide Dark Faerie knows. Still, Oridove DID concede with: 'Ah, but I did enjoy him. He was funny, and he made me laugh.' High praise from Oridove.

Callisto returns to the here-and-now and looks up, offers a partial smile. An honest one. It's the best she can do for now.

AT goes back to staring, it's hard to tell what goes in in their head, what they pick up from just looking at people, but then there's a soft smile , moments before the tea pot starts to whistle, "Then have that faith." A shadow reaches out to get the kettle, no pot holder needed. "We will find him and bring him home."

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