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Cassandra Allen last won the day on March 31

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  1. Cassandra nodded. "Like I said, now's good." She led him outside. "That's a neat trick, convincing a teacher that sending a teenage girl around with you all day with no supervision is a good idea," Cass mentioned as they walked away from the building. She glanced over at him. "More magic powers?" "What is magic, really?" The man of indeterminate identity said casually as he strolled alongside her. "Just being able to do something other people don't." He fixed Cassie with a penetrating, albeit good-humored glance. "Is the magic strange and terrible power not of this Earthly realm? Or is it just having a keen insight and way with people? What do you think, Cassandra?" She realised he'd dropped the down-home, folksy accent, now sounding sort of trans-Atlantic, possibly European... It was hard to tell. Cassie shook her head, dismissing the head games. "Gonna go with the strange and terrible power not of this Earthly realm. That is literally the definition." "One definition, surely. If you want to be a writer, you've got to be precise with your words." The Man in Black tsked, shaking his head. "Magic can also be 'an extraordinary power or influence seemingly from a supernatural source'. Seemingly. Just because you can't see how the trick is done, doesn't mean it's done with Radiance." "So did you use any kind of supernatural power or influence on Klent, or was it just your gift for gab?" Cass pressed. For a moment he was silent as they made their way down Main Street, then when he spoke it was without a trace of his prior amusement. "Live long enough, you meet a lot of the same people. Men like Barry, with his kind heart , his desire to help people, his hobbies and his wish to some day meet a nice woman and not be alone anymore. They're all just a teensy bit different, but they're similar enough that it's easy to fascinate and befriend them. Especially if you like them." "Which is not false, but also not what I asked." Cassandra looked at him. "Well that was my first question. What's yours then?" She'd already come to the conclusion that learning from him directly was going to be a chore...but she figured just knowing what his interest was would reveal at least some of his hand. "An easy one, to start." Mr Black said breezily as they walked together. "You're the Eyes. You found the Dark yet?" "Now look who needs to pick his words," she teased with a smirk. "There's more than one way to take that. Do you mean the Dark as in the alternate world that's all gross and...contaminated? Or the Dark as in the powers that the creatures from there seem to be...part of? Or maybe the Tree at the center of it all?" She lets that hang, then says, "I've found where it's closest to us, I think. At least around here." He smiled slightly at her teasing. "They're all related. But yes, the source. The Tree... that's not a tree at all. It's more of a... like those worms that attach to sea creatures, and grow and burrow into it, spreading a canker all around the infection point. A giant parasite that found it's way through a wound in the world a long time back, growing bigger every cycle of death and violence. That's what the Dark is, seeress - At least, as you know it." "So what does that make you?" Cass asks. "You've got some interest in this, but you don't seem to be helping it...or trying to stop it." "There's that tricky word again. 'Seem'." The Man in Black looked up at the sky, at the blue and the end of summer warmth permeating the air. "There's only so much I can do. Directly anyway. For me to do more would only make things worse. I am bound within certain rules, child, rules that restrict my power. But I have worked long and hard to ensure that there will be those who are going to step up who don't have my restrictions." He glanced at her meaningfully. "So that's implying that you're the reason that people around here have psychic powers so often?" She thinks about that, her eyes never leaving his face. "And these restrictions you have...they're because of the Dark?" "This land is special, because of what is buried beneath it. That wasn't my doing - I was elsewhere at the time it happened. I just arranged things so people with the right genes met, fell in love - or at least lust, and the usual natural things happened. Moving grains of sand, over many generations, to get you all here, where those genes would express in the way I hoped they would." He stopped, turning and facing her as a breeze flicked at the ends of his black coat. "There's a barrier around your world, Cassandra, put there a long time back, that's supposed to stop the development of Radiance amongst your kind. Something happened, and here in this place the barrier is weak. See, there's a source of Radiance, powerful Radiance, buried in this place you call Montana. And perversely, it coming here was what caused the wound that the Dark seeped through. So you have a place unlike anywhere else on your planet." He paused, scrutinising her. "You understand?" "No," Cassie replied. "There's a whole lot of context missing there. But we'll need to be gone more than an afternoon to chase everything down at once." She looked back ahead, to where downtown Shelly was visible some ways off. "So what we call 'Shine' you're calling 'Radiance.' Something from outside our world sort of...hit us, I guess, and made a weak place in a barrier. And now the Dark is taking advantage of that." She chews on that for a second, then says, "So people here have Shine because of this first thing. You're not the source of that, you're just...taking advantage of it." Now she looks back at him. "Why?" "Like I told your cold-eyed friend... I aim to cause upset to the established order." Mr Black grinned a trifle wolfishly. "Call me a rebel with a cause." His grin faded, his manner turning sober again. "It's important you kill the Dark before you go to Site B. You have to. What is at Site B, if you are able to free it - and you are - will feed the Dark exponentially if it is still alive. The shadow world it casts will become your actual world. It will possess people to kill their loved ones, then finally to turn on each other. So you and your friends have to find the Dark, defeat the host of the spirit that serves it, and smash the skull. That's the only way to cut the parasite off from what it needs to survive. It will shrivel and die... Probably." "Why can't it just feed off the Radiance in this thing?" she asks. "It's still outside the barrier, right?" In her head she was gnawing at another question entirely. The man's motivations. Cass didn't think he was lying, but he was definitely dancing around something significant. He wanted to be rid of the Dark, but was being forced to act very circumspectly. Why? He wanted to upset the established order. Why? She felt like the answers to those questions were the same. "Or, you said 'free' it. So...it's sort of embedded?" "Attagirl." Mr Black nodded approvingly. "It's not able to get at the source directly, and has to content itself with scraps of Shine it can glean only a few at a time." "Something like this doesn't seem like it's an accident. You're saying the barrier's to keep us from getting Shine, but maybe it's to keep things like the Dark out. Which means, maybe this thing was trying to get somewhere safe. Is it...alive? Is it intelligent?" "Yes." He said simply. "But it's not responsible for the barrier. In fact, the barrier is what caused the accident that crashed it here anyway. When you get there, and free it, you'll find out the whole story. It's not my story to tell, you see. The barrier is definitely there to stop humanity evolving Shine, though. On that, I swear. There's folks who don't want that to happen." "Folks who probably aren't too happy with this thing being here," Cassandra observes. "Or with what you're doing." "Probably!" Mr Black answered with a merry air. "They're going to be downright pissed when you unravel the mystery of Site B." "Is that a good idea? Pissing off folks that surround an entire universe with an anti-Shine barrier?" "Psh. Only your world." He flapped a hand dismissively. "And trust me, they'll be more scared than mad. They'd love to get their hands on the prize that's buried in them thar hills - it's way beyond what they've got on their best day. You'll see." "And besides... Site B is where you have to go anyway, isn't it?" he added with a sly smile. "It's on the list," Cassandra says casually. The Man In Black was the one who'd manipulated her into finding that photograph of her dad, knowing where it would eventually send her. He knew damn well. "So basically, this tour...this is you protecting your investment. Making sure we don't screw it all up. So what can you tell us about the Dark itself then? How do we beat it?" "You're the Eyes." he replied enigmatically. "You don't need me to tell you anything, Seeress." "Yeah, but no," she parried. "Because if that was true, you wouldn't need to be doing this. You've never stepped forward before, so something's changed." "Yes. It has. The spirit that serves the Tree is frantic. He tried to get you at the hospital and failed. He's going to do something else crazy and desperate soon - it's like he's half a terrified traumatised kid called Cody and half an ancient being of corrupted power mad with rage. You all have a lot on your plate, so I'm stepping up and helping you focus, like a coach - but I won't play the game for you." He motioned to her. "You're the Eyes. I've given you hints and even some straightforward instructions. If you want more, you have the power to find it out." Cassandra winced. So that's what happened to Cody. "Is that one of your restrictions?" she asked, "You can give some help, but only some? Is it because of these other 'folks?' or something else?" He paused for a beat, then said with a perfectly straight face "Yes." "Right." She looks around then, gestures with a sweep of her arm. "Behold downtown Shelly, in all its scenic grandeur. Anything else you can tell me?" "I like ice cream." he said as he glanced around, spotting Bunnees in the near-distance. "I'm going to have some ice cream. I think I'm all good for guidance right now, thanks. You? Well, you've got the afternoon off. So have fun, get stoned, have casual sex, do a little scrying... Whatever you crazy kids get up to these days when you play hooky." He sauntered in the direction of the diner, waving a hand in farewell. "You're welcome." "Hey," Cassandra called after him. "What are you going to do once we get rid of the Dark and free this 'other thing?'" He turned, walking backwards as he flashed a grin at her that made him seem boyish. "Sleep." he called back, before turning and continuing on his way. "Shit." Cassandra hurriedly grabbed her phone out of her pocket and held it up to snap a shot of 'Troy' walking off. Even zoomed in, it wasn't a great shot. She cursed under her breath and started dialing. The League of Extraordinary Teens needed to have a meeting. But first, she had some 'seering' to do.
  2. Cassandra's eyes widened on seeing him, and her heartbeat shot up in speed a few notches. Then she felt a shift in herself. On some level this felt like a power play by this guy. If he'd wanted to talk to her, he could have done that. If he'd wanted to attack, same thing. But no, he was coming at her through 'the real world,' showing off how easily he mastered that. Nowhere to run, nowhere to hide. Fuck that noise though, she was done running and hiding. Every second in his presence was a new chance to learn about someone/thing that up until now hadn't made any sense. She wasn't trapped in this situation with him...he was trapped in here with her. She stepped up, took his hand and shook it a titch more firmly than decor would normally have her do, looking him in the eye. "Yeah, I'm Cassandra Allen," she said, yanking her name back from him. "And it's more than okay. I wouldn't have it any other way. Lets get started right now, in fact." Cass looked at Barry and asked, "So what's the deal then, he's following me around school, or I'm taking him to the Carousel or what?"
  3. Teresa was waiting for Cassie when she came out of the hospital, shading her eyes a little from the transition to daylight. "Hey," Cassandra said, mustering up what she hoped was a reassuring smile. Her mom was not smiling. The first thing out of her mouth was, "Are you okay?" Cassie nodded. "Yeah, it was just precautions they were taking, you know? I don't think we were really exposed to anything. They just have to be careful." "No," Mrs Allen replied, "You have to be careful. What were you even doing here? Chasing down another 'story?'" She even made scare marks in the air with her fingers. "Visiting a friend, actually," Cassandra retorted. "Yeah, I have friends. One of them got hurt, so I came here. That's really all there was to it. The rest is wrong time wrong place." Teresa hesitated, then said, "Your friend's okay then? How did she get hurt?" Cass shook her head. "He got jumped by some other students..." and Teresa immediately looked skyward in exasperation. "Honey, you can't... Just tell me you weren't in the fight." "I wasn't!" Cassandra's mother eyed her narrowly, then covered her face. She nodded into her palms, then extended her arms, waving at Cassie to beckon her in. Then came the hug, almost painfully tight for a second. "When they called, I thought I was going to throw up," she whispered. "Then out here, waiting, feeling like that...feeling like I was going to lose you too... I'm sorry, baby. I'm not trying to...box you in, I just...I can't..." Cassie hugged her back, letting her talk. When she spoke it was in much softer tones. "You're not going to lose me. It's just...not everything's because of me, or even about me. Sometimes things just happen." Teresa broke into a teary-eyed chuckle. "Didn't I tell you that last year?" That memory turned the warm mood growing in Cassandra cold again. "Yeah. When you thought I was delusional about dad." "Yeah. I guess being the adult in the room doesn't make me immune. Just...promise me you'll be careful." Cassandra hesitated, then nodded. "I'll be careful." Her mom was apparently satisfied by that, and they went over to the car and got in. "So...I'm kind of a wreck, kiddo. Feel like pizza tonight?" "Sure." Cass fell silent as they pulled out of the medical center's parking lot and headed out. After a few minutes she asked, "Hey mom? Purely hypothetical question." "Uh huh?" "If dad showed up at the front door tomorrow...what would you do? How...how would it make you feel?" Teresa grimaced. "Baby..." "I'm serious. Like...I think I'd be happy, but I'd also be mad, and...confused...I don't know. It's weird." "It doesn't matter. He's not coming back. You HAVE to let this go." "But..." "No!" The tires screeched for a second as Teresa had to jam the brakes to stop in time for a red light. "No buts. I can't DEAL with this right now. He's gone, you HAVE to let him go. I know it's hard, I know it sucks, but you're not just hurting yourself, baby. You're hurting me. I...I still have to let him go too. And..." She trailed off, suddenly horribly aware of how close she'd come to telling Cassie how much she reminded her of him. Of how hard it was to move on with her daughter, all unknowing, talking like him and walking like him and putting her face where it didn't belong...just like him. "I'd be mad," she finally said. "I'd cry, and I'd hug him, and then I'd be so mad because of what he put us through." "Even if it wasn't his fault?" Teresa nodded and wiped her eyes. The light turned green and she started driving again. "Even then. Feelings don't care about what's fair, you know?" Cassandra thought about that and nodded. "But you'd forgive him." "Maybe. Probably. I don't know, hon. Can we just talk about what you did at school today?" Cass sighed and sat back in the backseat, belatedly clicking her seatbelt into place. "Okay." Then she fell silent though, and Teresa didn't press. The next conversation they had was about pizza toppings. Cassie loved pizza, but tonight her mind was distant. Somewhere out there was a man who could fix all this. It'd be hard to have him back, but only for a while. Her mom would get used to it again, he'd come back to himself, and they'd all heal. All she had to do was find him. And rescue him. She wouldn't be able to do that if she was careful.
  4. Cassandra Allen Cassandra records and keeps copies of every interview she ever does so she can collect dirt on everyone. Cassandra isn't even really a high school student. She's a narc who infiltrated the school like that one movie. Cassandra smuggles merchandise around for Jase in exchange for product she and her stoner friends share. Cassandra's not into dudes; she hasn't been on a date since she broke up with that loser she went out with as a freshman. Cassandra's dad isn't dead; that's a cover story so no one finds out he's actually in prison for molesting his clients. Cassandra's dad was killed by her mom who was trying to collect on his life insurance policy.
  5. Cassandra had her own screen of information to look at; the data about her father passed to her by Sean. It was incredible, but also very dense, with lots of scientific and medical jargon in it. Making sense of it required focus. Unfortunately, that was in short supply with the drama going on with the team going into the prison. She kept having to look over at Sean's screen, listen in on the conversation, and each time she did she had to start over on the files for her dad. Finally she just drilled down, shutting her gob and trusting everyone to know what they were doing. Sean was probably recording it, so she'd still get a chance to look at it. This was her dad. In the end, that determination paid off. Cassie still had to just skip past page after page of jargon that would require bigger brains than hers to decipher...but hidden among those pages were pearls of value to her. For example, the project her father was associated with currently was called Project 328-MK.79CBA. Cass didn't miss the 'MK' in there. Given the origins of all this, it stuck out. That was borne out last on when she started seeing terms like 'drug assisted conditioning' and 'operant loyalty re-distribution,' and even...at one point...'cybernetic-assisted behavioral modification.' Nightmare stuff, even if she still wasn't sure how it all worked yet. Near the end of one of the files was a caveat that got her attention. They noted that maintaining the conditioning was easier if they were isolated from outside social bonds. The more intense the bonds, the more 'stress' was put on the conditioned responses. They then suggested a series of countermeasures, such limiting candidates to those who lacked familial or romantic attachments, or using the conditioning to eliminate such bonds early...either by driving those individuals away, or even physically attacking them. Or, Cass thought hollowly, faking their deaths. "They're brainwashing him," she said softly, paging past file after file of details technical information she couldn't make head or tail of. She needed an engineer to look at this, or a doctor. Preferably both at once. "What the hell..."
  6. Cassie paced restlessly behind Sean, already questioning and cursing her decision not to go. Despite asserting there might be things she could do to help, the reality was that she didn't really know what those things were. And knowing her dad WAS there, and was some kind of prisoner... "Sean," she said, "I know I'm not a tech wiz like you, but there's gotta be something I can do. Anything. I'm dying over here."
  7. "Devin, Jase...everyone who's going," Cassandra said, "Be careful. If they're doing experiments they might have people who have powers there. I know there's no one like US there, but we've seen some people have abilities that don't...shine the way we do. We need...radios or something. So we can talk while you're there. I may be able to help, even at a distance. Also, one other thing." She pulled her wallet out of her pocket and plucked out a small plastic packet with a photograph secured inside. Showing to Devin and Jason, Cass said, "This is my dad. He may be there somewhere. Please...if you see him...I don't know if you can pull him out, but at least don't hurt him, okay?" Then something occurred to her, and Cassie looked around at Dr. Cook. "Actually..." She showed him her father's picture...the little wallet-sized one in a stiff plastic envelope. "Have you seen him around?" Though he was understandably a little distracted, Cook squinted at the photo a little and shook his head. "No. Bu...but if he's at the prison, I was never involved in anything there. I didn't even know..." Cassandra nodded. "Okay, thanks." She gave Charlie and Sophia a passing glance, then Courtney, and finally back to the 'team' that was shaping up. "You guys watch yourself."
  8. "Okay," Cassandra said and scooted over to get closer. She held a hand out. "When Jase and I tried it, we had to touch, so take my hand." Devin opened his mouth, and Cassandra...with perfect prescience...repeated herself sternly, in time to cut him off, "Take my hand." With a long suffering sigh, Devin plopped his hand over Cassandra's and aimed a smirk at Ms Giles, intending to tell her that this meant nothing, he was still saving himself for her...but those words never found their way out of his mouth. The room was too busy exploding around him. It took a second, a heartbeat, an eternal indrawn breath, for him to realize that the room wasn't blowing up. His awareness was. He was already no stranger to being able to sense time and space around him, but focused through the lens of Cassandra's Shine it felt as if that sense suddenly had no limits. The curvature of the Earth spread under him, and the ceiling above was where the air scraped the edge of vacuum. Shelly wasn't even a speck on his mental map, yet he could feel the town in excruciating detail, a livid map of psychic connections forged by his own emotions and the emotions of those he was familiar with. Cassandra was there with him, astride the world. She was, he realized, as surprised as he was...their concert extending her own senses well beyond their usual scope. Stay focused. The imperative she conveyed was not a voice, it was more like a memory he'd just recalled, almost indistinguishable from his own thoughts. Shelly. The prison. It was there, squat and stony and oppressive. As Devin focused his awareness, the fidelity of it increased until every crack in the concrete and every creeping lichen stood out to him. Then he realized there was more. A sense of presence, someone known to him, an echo or reverberation of a song he'd heard before. He knew the title. Etienne. He was below the ground, and here again the information from Cassie was refined by Devin's acute sense of distance and space. The room peeled open, limited by the momentary psychic glimpse she'd gotten. White ceiling with strips of light. Checkered floor. A hint of cabinet. The bed-chair with the unconscious Etienne. Anyone else in there? Devin's question occurred to Cassandra, and he felt it through her in a weird kind of feedback loop. I don't know. I didn't get a good look. I thought you were supposed to be all seeing? Somehow the tinge of snideness was conveyed even in that voiceless communion. Their connection shivered as Cassandra tugged slightly away. It was harder working through an object...this is still new to me. Do you have what you need? Devin considered. Teleporting blindly into a room he'd never seen before wasn't normally his favorite thing to do...but Cassandra's vision was enough to give him the location of safe spaces to appear in. Or the location of Etienne himself, if it came to that. In the conference room, Cassandra and Devin stood silently for a couple of minutes, his hand loosely grasping hers on the tabletop. It was perhaps the longest period of time anyone had ever seen Devin keep his mouth shut. Then he wrecked it. "Yeah. I got it."
  9. Cassandra worked her shoulders a little as Devin vanished and Kat had her say. "We don't even know where we're going yet," she said. "Prison just seems like a good place to hide mercenaries. But we can find out." She looked at Dr Cook, cowering across the table. "Did you take anything off of Etienne?" The scientist shook his head dolefully. "No. Kline's men would have done anything along those lines." Then, with a touch of suspicion, "Why?" "I need something that belonged to him. Or, like a comb or something would be ideal." He sat back in his chair for a moment, then said, "His office is upstairs in the Imaging Department." With that Cassie was up out of her seat. "Okay, which office?" Major Taggert spoke up at that point, pointing at one of the two armed men that had escorted him and Giles in. "Airman, escort her to that office and back here when she has what she needs." Then he turned his gimlet gaze on Cassandra. "No side trips, and stick with your escort. He's there for your safety." And to make sure I don't do any more snooping, thought Cassie with a wry smile...but she nodded. "Won't take but a minute." Then they were off, following Dr Cook's hasty directions, with his passcard in her hand. When they arrived and beeped in, Cass found the office looking like it had barely ever been used. Fitting, since his 'job' in Imaging was certainly just a cover. Even so, he HAD been there before. Cassandra closed her eyes, 'feeling' around the room for echoes of his presence. In one of the drawers was a pack of playing cards...but no...the trash can. She hunkered down a bit. The bin was empty, but on the floor under it was a bit of dust and grit...probably spilled by accident the last time it had been taken out. In that was a little white half-moon shape. A fingernail clipping. Cass scraped it up off the floor and gave the airman a smile. "That'll do." He gave her a disgruntled, somewhat grossed out look. "All this for that?" "I know. It's mysterious. Imagine what I could do with a whole finger." The airman frowned, then waved her ahead of him. "All right, lets move it." They arrived back in the conference room with everyone else in it and Cassandra put her prize on the table. Everyone else leaned forward a little to get a better look. The Sheriff asked, in a tone clearly communicating that he hated that he had to ask this, "Is that a fingernail?" Cassandra shook her head. "It's Etienne. I mean, okay it's his fingernail, yes, but until pretty recently, it was him. It's still kind of him. I can use it to find the rest of him." "You realize that made absolutely no sense," replied the lawman, his bushy brows beetled together. "Yeah, pretty much." Cassie leaned over the clipping and cupped her hands around it. There was a sudden feeling of vertigo sweeping over her, and she swayed precariously for a second. The conference room fell away and the town whickered past, then the countryside, until she was hovering over familiar terrain...the Crossroads prison facility. She let out a started 'eep' as the ground rushed up at her, concrete walls and inmates and guards all rising around her then vanishing as she plunged straight down past the paved courtyard and the dirt beneath...to where stone replaced dirt and suddenly she was in a cold white room lit by a buzzing florescent bulb. In the room there was a chair...the kind of full-body chair you saw in dentist's offices. Creepy dentist's offices. And in the chair was Etienne. His eyes were closed, his breathing regular and slow. There was a little metal stand by the bed with a plastic bag full of clear fluid at the top, connected to his arm with a tube. She let her breath out with a gasp and opened her eyes. "Jesus Christ, this thing..." Cass muttered. "It's like a fucking roller coaster in my head." She cleared her throat. "Okay, I got him. He's under the prison, in a room...very clean, maybe a lab? He's alive, in like a surgical bed? With an IV in his arm." Getting her phone out, she started putting Devin's numbers in. "I'll let Dev know. I think maybe we can get there if we work together."
  10. Cassandra wanted to try to wring more out of him. She wanted to explain the whole 'social contract' thing more, get him on board with it more...but really didn't know how to do that. She only had a kind of vague idea of how it was all supposed to work herself. It was endlessly frustrating to her that someone who seemed as smart as Jase couldn't seem to grasp something that was so easy for most other people. She was tired of fighting though. "All right. Okay. So... You want to tell Ms Giles about it, Dr. Cook? Let me set the stage for you, just so we're on the same page. Etienne and you in your office. You're talking. You get in a fight. He's upset with you, with the Project, with what you're having him do. He tells you he's done." She jabs a finger towards the scientist. "You realize that you can't just let him go. He knows too much, and if you lose track of him who knows who he'll talk to." At this, Cass glanced at Giles. "Or who it'll get back to." "You take him down your super-cool little office elevator. Oh, at gunpoint, I should add. A while later you come back up. Alone. With the gun still in your hand. The same one that's in your desk drawer right now." Cassie sat back in her chair and gestured at him. "You want to fill in the missing time there? Might go easier on you if you do it yourself."
  11. "Jesus, Jase," Cassandra muttered, burying her face in her hands. Then she looked up and held her hands out. "Okay, everyone...just calm down for a second." She threw a glare at Jason. "And before you tell me that 'you are calm,' let me just say that that isn't what calm people do. Okay? Yeah, he called you a liar...because he's a liar and that's what people do. They...accuse other people of doing the things they do. But you have to get a fucking grip, man. Someone trash talks you doesn't mean you get to go Hannibal Lecter on their ass." She waved a hand at Dr Cook. "And don't you go thinking I'm on your side either, because I know what you did to Etienne. You're not getting off that hook. I'm just...ugh." Cass abruptly turned and pointed at Jase. "You have to promise me no powers. No matter what, in this room right now, or...against Dr Cook. Because otherwise I won't say anything more and he'll get away with it, and it'll be your fault."
  12. "We talked about it," Cass clarifies quickly, shooting Devin a glare. "We haven't done anything." "And a lot's happened since that discussion," she adds to Devin. "Stuff we didn't plan on. So...yeah, we still need to do that. The, uh, reservation, I mean. Not the prison." She nods at the Sheriff. "We are definitely not going to do the prison thing."
  13. "We saw Courtney with Dr. Cook," Cassie said, glancing at Autumn. "Just before everything went to hell. I didn't know about the others though. Huh." She looks around at the rest of the Fellowship, then at Giles. "Cody was one too. That...doesn't surprise me, I guess. But he's a perfect example of why we need to know. Those kids, all of them...they're in danger. Us too, but we're stronger and we tend to stay in groups. Which reminds me." Cassandra dug her phone out and swiped through her photos until she got to the one Autumn had sent her. The one of the man dressed in black. The one that had come for her and Cade again later on. Holding it out so Giles and the others at the table could see it, she asked, "Any of you know who this is?"
  14. "More questionable than mass surveillance and human...genetic stuff?" Cassandra asked skeptically. "I'm gonna need sources for that." She paused, then the word she'd been hunting for popped into her head. "Eugenics!" Her cheeks colored. "I mean, not 'genetic stuff.' Eugenics. Like the Nazis." As much to distract from the slip as anything, Cass pressed Ms Giles then. "Anyway, Crossroads owns the prison. What kind of 'questionable activities' have they done before then? And...hang on, how can they be a surprise? You guys were operating in Shelly before they opened the prison, right?"
  15. Cassandra shook her head. "All I know is what anyone who keeps even moderately well-informed can tell you." She started ticking off fingers. "It's crooked as shit. It's cruel and inhumane. It has a criminally bad safety record. And..." Here Cass paused. "...and it's a Dark factory. Okay, one thing that not anyone would know. The point, though, is that you just started talking very carefully, and you're trying to bounce my questions back at me which is prime evasion tactics and it's not working." "So one more time from the top. What do you know about it?"
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