Silhouette

Silhouette

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Introduction

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XX Where hero and villain meet, a grave battle shall follow...

In a world where supernatural children are a small percentage of babies born, children who possess these abilities are ripped from their families the moment their powers awaken and are whisked away to a place called the Institute. xx
Citizens are told that this school, and many others like it around the country, exist to help young supernaturals learn about their powers and understand their own strength, so as to keep them from ever harming themselves or others. Underneath the surface, however, these children are taught to kill, to lock away their emotions and inhibitions in favor of following the government's personal agenda. Carefree children missing their families become blank soldiers who can no longer comprehend what a family is. They become shells following military orders unblinking. xx
While government propaganda has many citizens believing the lie, there are those who resist and oppose the people behind it all. There are those who fight back, who wish for nothing more than the truth to be revealed. This is where we will begin our story. It is not a story about rebels, or about Heroes, or about the villains who fight the Heroes. xxx
This story is about a boy who did not care at all but now cares too much, and about the boy he cares too much for. xx
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The Story So Far... Write a Post » as written by 2 authors

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XX Briar Harvent

Seeing Adriel and Matthias again... isn't as much of a shock and Briar would have thought. If it's because of his interaction with Oscar that afternoon or not, he doesn't know, but he finds himself treating them as if they were just any old family friend come 'round visiting. Once the situation is established to be nonthreatening, everyone splits off. Cedar and Nick go back to their rooms, with the excuse of getting more sleep even though Briar suspects they won't. Aiden goes to make some phone calls, stating that while their visitors aren't bad, it is bad that they were so easily tracked. xx
Adriel hobbles off to the toilet like her life depends on it and Briar collapses on the couch, more than a little exhausted from the sudden adrenaline. He looks over at Matthias and smiles. "You're exactly like I remember. Literally the same, physically. You're a lot more talkative though- pretty sure you said more in that one exchange than you did the entire time I knew you as a kid. Love really does change you, huh." Briar says, his expression falling when his words bring back the dream he'd had not long ago. He wonders if what he and Oscar had could be called love. xx
When Adriel returns and they all gather on the couch together, Briar stands, instead sitting on the coffee table so he can face Adriel. "Y'know, if you want, I can check on your baby." He asks softly. "I've spent all my time learning about the human body in every stage... after all, it's not like my powers are good for much else. Can't do much but learn everything that's new." xx
With permission, Briar lays his hands across Adriel's stomach, and feels something he's never felt before. He feels the baby's heartbeat, so soft and simple, feels how healthy the baby is. He can tell it's a girl, can tell she's getting the nutrients she needs and is growing at a proper rate. No damage from the fall whatsoever. "She's fine, perfectly healthy. And so is her mom." Briar says with a smile, silently healing the patches in Adriel's skin that would have become bruises within a day. xx
Adriel and Matthias - Matthias especially - both deflate at the news that their baby is alright, and the conversation turns to the events of that afternoon. They trade notes and it seems there really isn't much that Adriel and Matthias don't already know. Not that Briar is surprised. Adriel is known for knowing everything. "Only thing we don't know right now is how bad Whisper is. It's been four years since we saw him last." She admits, and Briar wonders what it's been like for them all this time. Probably not too different from how he's felt since leaving them all behind. xx
"He-" Briar's voice cracks and he pretends not to notice. "It... it's like he was a completely different person. He was so cold, and blank... it was like he coukdn't see me. He didn't even use my name, just my Number. And what he did-" He chokes on his words, remembering the bodies littered across that hallway, utterly lifeless. Adriel and Matthias wait patiently for him to continue. "My mentor, she's a telepath, like Oscar. I think she set him off somehow. And he- he took away their minds. All those people, he took away their memories, their knowledge, everything- they're still alive, but they can't even think for themselves now. It's so cruel." xxx
Briar can feel himself crying again and he hides his face in his hands, mumbling through his fingers. "I was in love with him. So in love." A shaky breath. "It took me forever to understand what that meant, but I do. I dreamed about meeting him again and having the kind of happily-ever-after you see in fairytales. But when I finally, finally see him again-" xxx
"Oscar tried to kill me today. How the fuck am I supposed to react to something like that?" xx

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XX Adriel and Matthias

Adriel and Matthias for what it was worth seemed to make their selfs comfortable in Briar's home. Adriel hobbling off to the toilet at a surprisingly quick pace for a woman of her... nature. Matthias's shoulders relax slightly but his eyes still trail her as she leaves, as if keeping an eye on every move. He smiles slightly when Briar points out his talking. "Heh, yeah that's about right. You weren't much of a talker either if I remember, I learnt quickly with a 4-year-old you gotta speak up." Adriel returned to Matthias sitting close to him they both unconsciously reaching out for each other, as if reassuring each other they were still there.

Knowing their daughter was safe as put a smile on their faces but hearing Briar's retelling of the story quickly sobered the mood. They glanced at each other shocked to see Briar so... open... about himself, his feelings. The mother inside Adriel made her move over to Briar hugging him close to her chest as she ran her fingers through his hair. She allowed him to hide his tears and no one spoke for a while the only sound was of her singing a small tune under her breath. Singing had never been allowed before and now she used it freely to comfort her squa- friend. "He's still in there Briar. He's been through more than we can imagine. But he loved you too, and I'm certain he still does now. She pulls away so Briar could see her face and she ran a thumb under his eyes to wipe away the tears that were 'so not there' . "You know what he'd say if they hadn't of broken him? She smiled and spoke a phrase from her memory, she had the uncanny ability to copy any sound she heard including voices. "Briar you've got to smile! Forget all that they've done to us. We're alive, we have a family and they can never take that away."

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XX Briar Harvent

Hearing Oscar's voice, the voice he remembers- Briar's emotions intensify even though he knows it's just Adriel comforting him. He hides his face in her dress and bawls like a child that's skinned their knee, relishing all he can of her warmth. There's no telling how long he'll have it. He doesn't want to fall asleep, not here, not now, but sitting back up feels like a monumental task and it's as if his own body is telling him to just shut up and rest for once. He falls asleep listening to the tiny heartbeat within Adriel's belly. This baby, she's proof that the Institute doesn't control everything. xx

XX Maia Halling

Maia is many levels of exhausted when she finally makes it home. Images swirl in her mind of all the people whose humanity was stolen, all the people she could do nothing to save. I can't feel guilty for this. I can't let that consume me. She tells herself, throwing the negative emotion out of her thoughts best she can. Right now, she has to prepare her family for a lot of sudden change. xx
She doesn't expect to walk in and find Briar passed out in the arms of a woman she has to take a second to recognize, but despite seeing strangers, the quickest of looks into how content everyone is proves the lack of threat. Maia recognizes the newcomers, different as they may look from the memories she's seen. There's something giddy in her as she sees Adriel is pregnant, as she sees their children in their minds, how happy a family they are- these two, who've been through hell- xx
"Adriel and Matthias," She says quietly, tiptoeing over to their little cluster. "I've seen you two in Briar's memories, it's wonderful to meet you. I'm Maia. Though I suspect you know so." xx
An oddly passive thing for a telepath to say, "suspect," but Maia wants her words to put them at ease. She doesn't want them to think she's rooting through their heads, even if it may be true. "He feels guilty for leaving you all behind when he escaped. I'm sure he's glad to learn that you two at least have built a life for yourselves outside the Institute's reach. May I ask how you left? I expect the Institute was much more cautious after losing one of their best students..." xx

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XX Oscar Wilson

Adriel stayed curled up with Briar for as long as he liked. Running fingers through his hair as she herself closed her eyes. She wasn't surprised as Maia had come in, she had heard the woman coming, could hear the woman's heartbeat like it was her own. She smiled up at what is basically Briar's mother and gestures for her to sit down. "Please it's your home we don't want you to make you feel uncomfortable, come sit." It takes one tiny glance to Matthias, not even a thought as he nods and moves closer to his wife. "Expect? Why surely you know. Please, I shared a shower with a telepath for 5 years. You know exactly what I know. If anything it's comforting."


Her smile was open and joyful despite the obvious pain in her mind. "He feels guilty for leaving you all behind..." She frowned and looked down at the floor the flash of the memory of that night burning inside her. The wave of pain from a bullet, panic at seeing Matthias fall, the happiness she felt when she saw Briar got away. She seemed lost in the memory until Matthias touched her hand and she snapped her head up to him before smiling sadly. "We were just glad he was okay, at least they were. I didn't feel much at the time."

When the last question was asked and they both tensed up, images of seeing Oscar beaten and bruised, the moment of grief when they heard Briar had died. The look on Oscar's face brought tears to Adriel's eyes. "It's a long story....The punishment was expected after we got caught.... what we didn't expect was how much of it was pushed off onto Oscar. We were barely touched. Every tiny thing we did wrong... Oscar paid. " Her voice broke at the last comment and Matthias stepped in. "The escape saw Oscar's powers increase. The doctors said that the stress and wounds made him already mutating DNA just mutate more. The more he was pushed the more powerful he got, the more he couldn't control himself.

Adriel shook her head in disbelief. "It was around then he developed empathy, which only made things worse. He was stubborn, he loved Briar and seeing us two... mostly Matthias developing feelings, I think it made him sad, not that I realised at the time, I didn't know how to process it, how to know how he was feeling. but he encouraged it... told us to be with each other despite what they said. Then... I fell pregnant, he of course was the first to know. It was Oscar's idea, the escape. He was more powerful... able to hear thoughts further, become more believable forms. But we didn't know! They'd started using his abilities to make better brainwashing techniques, using it on Whisper and Whirlpool, we were lost causes. "But they expected us to try again, had known Adriel was pregnant and wanted an excuse to break Oscar even more. The more Oscar cared the more they could push him. We should have known they knew how to break him, break Whirlpool, break the unbendable Oscar! I should of seen it coming!. They'd both been brainwashed using Oscar's powers, especially Whirlpool, and the- he sold us out. Oscar killed him to stop him from killing me. But that woman came, said words.... phrases that seemed to start somthing." A grave look crossed both their faces as the last thing rang through both of their minds at once, not dared speak outloud, even as tears fell down both their faces. Oscar snapped, and attacked us

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XX Maia Halling

Maia watches these children recount their time after Briar's disappearance and she shares in their sadness, shares in their pain that has yet to fully heal. There's no question that the brainwashing in the soldiers goes deep- Oscar was a perfect example of that, and if the rest of the Heroes are anything like him, Maia fears the worst. What if there's nothing she can do for those children, just as there was nothing she could do for her own comrades? She forces the thoughts from her mind, pulls Adriel and Matthias to her as gently as she can, rubbing circles into their backs and letting them cry into her sweater. She's barely older than them, but everyone could use a mother figure. xx
"You know in your hearts that it isn't him. Whisper and Oscar are two very different people and if you can have an affect on one, you can get through to the other. You have to believe in that possibility." Maia says, showing them a vision of Whisper from that afternoon. Of how seeing Briar in tears had shaken something in him, even though it had also shaken him out of his shock and confusion. Maia still wonders if she went too far, trying to get an emotion out of him. xx
"He's still in there, you know that. But it will be difficult to reach him. I could see into his mind and his memories and I still could barely stir anything up. I think it'll have to be the people who know and love him that can bring him back to who you remember him being." xx
Maia feels Aiden before she sees him, hears what he's scared of in his thoughts, and feels saddened that she'll have to confirm said fears. She pulls away from Adriel and Matthias, shaking Briar in an attempt to wake him. "One of the rebels whose memories were taken had knowledge of all the safehouses under the rebellion's charge. I've no doubt that boy knows where we are. Which means we have to move, tonight. Aiden, love, please start packing up." Aiden nods, expression falling, and heads off. Maia shakes Briar again. "Briar, darling, I need you to wake the boys, get them both ready to leave. We can't stay in this house any longer." xx


XX Briar Harvent

Though normally one to wake up in an instant, Briar's emotional exhaustion makes waking up difficult, and he blinks up at Maia above him with sleepy confusion. They have to leave? Why? He doesn't have to ask, because she's pushing a statement into his head: Oscar knows where they live. Great. Briar worms his way out of the mom-sandwich he's in and heads for his and Cedar's room. Surprisingly, Cedar actually has managed to fall asleep after the earlier commotion, but is easy enough to wake. He's up and packing in minutes, grumbling all the way about bad security. xx
Nick is a different story. When Briar opens the door, he's met with already-full boxes of computer equipment and down bedsheets, the only things Nick really owns. "I-I heard Aiden say that the house might be compromised, if that lady found us. So I figured I'd pack up. And if we didn't have to leave after all, I could just. Unpack." He says, half-lidded eyes making Briar suspect he hasn't slept at all, even before getting visitors. Questionable sleep schedule, smart kid. xx
"Well, good news is, you don't have to undo your hard work." Briar says, trying to smile and sound reassuring. He doesn't feel like it works. "Maia's already got you guys a place to go." xxxx

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Briar, not owning anything that can't be shoved into a backpack in a moment's notice, waits in the living room with Adriel and Matthias, lost in thought while everyone else packs up the few possessions they have and loads it all into Maia's ugly beige minivan. He knows Maia must hear what he's thinking, because she keeps sneaking glances at him amidst the bustle in the house, but she doesn't try and change his mind. Maia's job is to protect their family. She knows he's right. xxx
When everything is done and everyone is ready to leave, Briar doesn't move. "I don't think I can go with you, if I want you all to be safe." "What're you talking about, asshat?!" Cedar blurts out, looking like he might punch Briar for making such a ludicrous statement. Briar takes a deep breath. "Look... Oscar knows I'm alive. The Institute knows I'm alive. And they know I'm in league with the rebellion, which means I have rebellion secrets, and that I'm giving Institute secrets to the rebellion. There's no doubt I'll be targeted. And they don't leave witnesses." xxx
"If I go with you, and they track me down like Adriel did, they'll do the same things to you all that they did to us back at the academy. I couldn't- live with myself if that happened." xxx

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XX Adriel and Matthias

Adriel and Matthias aren't sure why it feels so nice to relax into someone else's arms. Adriel herself had just done that to Briar but apart of them still didn't put it together that they were children once. They didn't speak as they clung onto each other both of their hands resting on Adriel's stomach. They stayed there together as the family of who's house they were in started to get moving. A sad look crossing both their eyes as they realised the meaning behind this. They looked at each other, a silent conversation even Maia couldn't be privy too. Adriel gave Matthias a questioning look before he in turn nodded. As one they turned to face Briar a miicheivous glint in both their eyes. One that Adriel always used to have but a new additon for the lager warrior. "You know Matthias. We still haven't found a use for that room yet." Matthias smiled as his wife and leant back on the sofa streching his arms back. "True and we haven't found a baby sitter to put up with our... unique children. Adriel just slumped back defeated and half glanced towards Briar talking louder. "So, you're saying is that we have a spare room and we need a super nanny... hmmm Briar do you know anyone?"

That was that for the two. They had made up their minds to take Briar as their 'super nanny'. There home was safe, not related to the rebels and free from the eye of the institute. The couple let Briar say his well needed goodbyes and with a promise to keep him safe took him to their home. It was on the edge of the city, away from the hustle and bustle. The neighnorhood looked quiet and friendly even in the late night view. Their home was a cozy house that had beautiful flowers laced along the outside. A single light was on inside and despite them both not looking concerened Matthias still went first ahead of Adriel and Briar. An older womans voice called out. "Don't you sneak up on These bones aren't what they used to be! "Please Mrs Fisher you'll wake the children." "Those little monsters! Wake up! Hah! It'll be snow in August before that happens! A figure of an old looking woman stepped into the hall her small form looking healious up agaisnt the tall warrior having Matthias backed up into a corner despite being half his size if not less. Adriel quickly came to rescuse her husband.

"Thank you Peggy. We appricate it." "OH! It was no problem. The little darlings didn't make a peep, they don't dare! Now, who's this young man. She had spotted Briar in the corner of her eye and stepped up as if examining him. "You! You should eat more, I'm surprised no one gets a paper cut hugging you. I'll have that sorted. Little bit of sugar never hurt no one. Now. If you excuse me it's far too late for me." "That you Peggy, we'll see you tomorrow Rose is excited." The woman just huffed as she stepped out closing the door leaving the three of them in the enterance way with Adriel giggling slightly.

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XX Briar Harvent
"So, what you're saying is that we have a spare room and we need a super nanny... hmmm, Briar, do you know anyone?" Maia stifles a giggle, and Briar pauses, staring at his friends, his family- their conspiring grins, their joined hands, their baby- before he knows it, Briar's crying again for the nth time that night, and he welcomes the hugs that come at him from every angle. xxx
"I would love that. Really." He says, glad that even though he has to leave one family behind, at least he won't be alone. He'll be a part of another family- the family he wanted to reconnect with. xx
Tears continue to fall as Briar says goodbye to Maia, Aiden, Cedar, and Nick, who all crowd him until the last second. Briar deflates like a sad balloon as the van pulls out of the driveway, feels his heart sinking a little when the van disappears completely. But Adriel and Matthias are there. He's not alone. He slings his backpack over his shoulder and locks up the house, shoves the key under the doormat for one of the rebels to find later so they can put the house up for sale later on. xx
Briar looks at the plain, one story building and sighs. This is where he's lived for five years, since the very day he escaped and Maia found him, exhausted and crying and more than broken. This is where he learned what love was, what it meant, how people showed it- this is where he realized what Oscar had been trying to tell him, in that swimming pool and so many other times that Briar hadn't even taken note of until then. This is where he recognized that he had been the strange one. xx
Adriel's hand fits into Briar's and he pulls his eyes from the house, looks at her and Matthias instead. The three of them have proven that people really can change, that people can thrive even when they've been through hell. He returns her smile, squeezes her hand, and they leave together. xx

XX
"Holy shit, this is your house?!" Briar stares at the cottage-like masterpiece in front of him and his heart cries, because it's absolutely adorable. He has no idea what he was expecting, but reality certainly exceeds expectations, whatever they were. "Seriously, this is so cute." It's dark, so the colors and details are missing, but the shape of the house and flowing pathway and patches of flowers make the place feels loads more homely and cared for than the immense plainness of the safe house. Which he supposes makes sense- the safe house is meant to be inconspicuous. This, however, is a home cultivated by people who almost don't even need to shy away from the world. xx
Adriel and Matthias both laugh, the sound like music to Briar's ears. "Glad you like it. We worked hard on fixing up when we first moved in. This place smelt worse then the changing rooms after training." "Oh God, really?!" "Mhm." Briar's entire faces scrunches up in disgust at the the rather vivid cellular memory, and he takes a few obvious steps closer to the flowers, to which his friends laugh again. "Don't let Matthias fool you. He did the garden by himself. All the flowers and plants are his work not mine." "Well, Matthias, this garden... it pleases me." xx
Matthias chuckles and walks ahead of them, and the voice of an old woman has Briar cocking his head to the side, confused. "Don't you sneak up on me! These bones aren't what they used to be!" "Please Mrs. Fisher, you'll wake the children." "Those little monsters? Wake up? Hah! It'll be snow in August before that happens!" Briar smiles and does his best not to laugh at the sight of Matthias, giant that he is, more or less cowering beneath the might of this little old lady. xx
Adriel thanks the woman - Peggy Fisher, apparently - and Mrs. Fisher insists how little trouble it was to babysit, before finally catching sight of Briar and looming on him like a hawk over prey. "Now, who's this young man?" She asks, looking him over from head to toe. Briar shifts under her gaze but smiles nonetheless. "Briar Harvent, ma'am. I'll be staying over for a little while." "You!" "Yes?" "You should eat more, I'm surprised no one gets a paper cut hugging you! I'll have that sorted. Little bit of sugar never hurt no one. Now, if you'll excuse me, it's far too late for me." "That you Peggy, we'll see you tomorrow Rose is excited." And then she's gone. xxxx
Briar has questions about this lady, who is clearly a neighbor and clearly a spitfire. But he'll be around for who-knows-how-long and he's sure he'll see her again, so he sets his questions aside. xx
The inside of the house feels just as homely as the dim-lit outside, with lavender painted walls, grey wood floors and furniture in a darker grey with white and lavendar accents. There are stuffed toys laid neatly between throw pillows on the couch and the place is surprisingly clean, considering this house is actually well-lived in, not to mention the presence of three children. It's like a spread out of an interior decorating magazine and Briar, who's not had the opportunity to decorate while needing to be ready to leave at a moment's notice, can definitely appreciate this. xx
He toes off his shoes and leaves them on a shelf by the door, next to a pair of tiny pink sparkling sneakers that Briar totally doesn't coo over. Adriel points out a few doorways in sight and starts for one of them, clearly excited about having a guest to show about, but Matthias intervenes before she can get far. "Adriel, sweetie, it's late. We can give him the tour tomorrow, we need to sleep." And as much as Briar wants to see the rest of their beautiful home, he's still running on only a few hours of interrupted nightmare sleep, so he follows Matthias toward their spare room. xx
The room is nice- a decent sized bed, a little desk in one corner, a dresser and a rocking chair with wisteria vines painted onto the white wood. It's nice. But Briar feels the unfamiliarity in all of it. xx
"Do you... well." Briar turns from setting his bag down and eyes Matthias with curiosity. "Want to sleep in our bed? Like when we were kids?" Briar, who remembers this man being as out-of-touch as he was with the fun Oscar and Adriel tried to get them to learn, sees someone completely different standing in front of him. He may look the same, in appearance, but his eyes crinkle around the edges and the corners of his mouth perk up, and he feels different, because he is different. And so is Adriel, and Briar himself. It feels like they've left the Institute behind them. xx
And even though Briar knows they can never truly leave everything that happened in the past, he also knows to take advantage of the good things that come his way, because they never last. So he follows Adriel and Matthias to their bedroom with its king-sized bed and five hundred fluffy blankets, comments on Matthias' rainbow lollipop boxers and laughs with Adriel for a full minute over the constipated look on Matthias' face, watches their cute nightly routines with a wide smile. xx
And when they're all in bed, underneath a mountain of soft warmth, huddled together, Briar feels comfortable. At home. He falls asleep with his subconscious wishing Oscar could be there too. xxx

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XX Oscar Wilson

In a dark room filled with medical equipment, Oscar is sat slumped over his body a mixture of red bleeding welts, bruises and gashes. He stares meekly down at the floor not daring to move as the faceless white coats chain him to the chair. A set of equipment has been placed aside for cleaning. Harsh looking blades stained red scattered about as the woman who causes all of Oscar's fears steps into view. "Now. Tell me again one more time. Why you failed." Oscar looks up slightly his gaze not quite making it to her face. "I didn't kill him." "Kill who, 78-55-3?" "Briar." A resounding slap fills the room as without hesitation the woman backhands Oscar across the face. "Again." Oscar's form just slumps as a single tear falls down his face. "Oh dear. It seems we need to reteach you the same lessons you refuse to learn." She gestures to the white coats to continue as she turns and leaves the room. Sounds of Oscar's screams follow behind her as she dials a number into her phone and continues to walk away. "It's me. I want to authorize the controlled release of 78-55-3. He has a dead man to find. My son won't escape me again."

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End of Ep. 02

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XX Briar Harvent

It doesn't take long for Briar to become part of the Herod household. Living with Matthias and Adriel again takes no time at all to get used to- after all, he spent the better part of his childhood with them by his side nearly every second of the day. It's their three children he has to get used to. xx
Briar hates to have chosen a favorite, because it doesn't feel fair, but Rose Marie is definitely his favorite, and not just because she's partially named after him. She's sweet, enthusiastic, and quite possibly the most positive person he's ever met, aside from Adriel. It's easy to see who she takes after. Lance, being a toddler, is still cultivating his personality, but Briar watches him day in and day out, and it's clear that even as a two-year-old he's starting to copy his dad's dry, witty humor. xx
It's Isaac Briar has the most trouble with, and he feels it's because he sees a lot of himself in the boy. Isaac is reserved, guarded. He's had his trust broken by others and Briar doesn't blame him for being so distant, only wishes there was a way he could somehow help him feel safe and loved. xx
Briar does his best to be the best pseudo-uncle he can be. If he can help the family even a little, he's happy. And hey, Mrs. Fisher next door loves him, so he can't be doing too bad so far, can he? xx

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"When will you be back? You said you would do my hair and that I could do yours and that you would keep it like that for the whole week! You promised!" Rose says, bouncing up and down in her baby blue princess dress, hands waving in the air so wildly it's a right miracle the head doesn't fly off the doll she's holding. "You promised!" She reminds him again, and Briar has a dilemma, because he hasn't actually promised her yet, and he loathes making a promise he may not be able to keep. But this is Rose Marie- if he doesn't concede, he will never hear the end of it. xx
So he puts on a smile and straightens her dress, Rose finally falling still. "All right, I promise. But it might not happen tonight, if your parents get back before I do then there might not be time, so we'll have to do it another time, okay?" Rose nods and hugs him tight. Briar sighs. xx
It's been a good few months since Briar was welcomed into the Herod home, and for the most part, he's rarely left the house for fear of drawing attention to the family. But Mrs. Fisher sprained an ankle earlier in the week and can barely walk for more than a hallway's length, so he offered to take time out of the day to buy her groceries. It took a fair amount of convincing but the stubborn old woman finally agreed to stay home with Rose and Lance while Briar left to shop for a while. xx
The two kids almost cried when Briar refused to take them along. Fear overrides everything, lingering in the back of his mind every second of every day. There's no doubt in Briar's mind that once the Institute realizes Briar is still within city limits, they'll be putting their energy into tracking him down. There's also no doubt in his mind that they'll send Oscar to do it. The last thing Briar wants is for Adriel and Matthias' quiet, peaceful life to be destroyed by the Institute. xx
Briar catches a bus into town and walks through the grocery store with a long, detailed list in one hand, scanning shelves for the exact brands Mrs. Fisher wants. He waves to a smiling baby in a cart, helps a small teenage girl reach some cereal from a high shelf, and tries not to be paranoid. xx
He's just stepped into the self-pay line when he feels it- eyes on him. Briar turns and finds no one suspicious, no one staring. But then he looks down, and there he is- Oscar, all of twelve years old. xx

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XX Oscar Wilson


Oscar had one goal. One mission. Find Briar. This thought processing was difficult as there seemed to be two sides at war inside him. The larger more powerful voice pointed out that his official mission was to uncover the rebels whose information on safe houses and protocols were engraved in his mind. But if he stopped to listen there was a tiny, quiet voice just repeating the same work over and over. Briar. Briar. Find. Briar. No matter how hard Oscar tried he couldn't ignore the voice.

This was a long term mission. Although he was usually used for assassinations his skill set was more suited to a mission like this. Spending his time shapeshifted into different forms he hung around large crowded areas scanning every mind that came into his large range. It was tiring but he didn't stop. Every day for 3 months it was eat, sleep, scan, repeat. A few times he explored dead ends Until he spotted him. The boy's mind had been lacklustre and Oscar had ignored it but when he stepped into Oscar's view from his position on a public bench Oscar became infatuated. The boy looked just like Briar when he was younger. The young boy was holding a woman's hand and talking as he was lead down the street and Oscar's small voice said follow So he did.

Ignoring the mission objectives was making him feel angsty. He almost felt the pain he'd expect to receive if that woman knew what he was doing but to no logic at all he followed. Something made him feel strange as he watched the boy. Following behind the mother and her child shapeshifted into a young female form. They looked, normal, thoughts showed no illegal activity and looking at their forms they held no powers. They were useless, why was he following them? He thought hard. He wanted to know how they were feeling. That thought surprised him. He glanced down at his shapeshifted palm. Emotions. When was the last time he had felt a strong emotion? Used his empathic abilities on purpose instead of the flicks of panic he got when he killed someone with his bare hands. Why was he asking himself this? Questioning his mission and following useless civilians just because.... because.... he didn't even know. He clenched his fists and forced his feet to stop. The two figures disappearing around the corner ahead. He shouldn't be doing this. He ignored the small voice as he turned around and nearly froze when he saw him. Briar. The real Briar.

His training said attack but the other voice wanted to watch. Briar had just stepped into a store. Oscars form was compromised. Briar would have seen this form. He needed to change. An unthreatening form, one that would be overlooked by passers-by. He found the small voice speaking up and supplying him with a solution. And for the first time in a while. Oscar shifted into his true form and then deaged his body. He ran into the store and watched Briar from afar. Still not sure why he wasn't just attacking. Never the less he wouldn't let his target getaway. He stepped behind the boy as he queued up at stared up at him his face emotionless.

When Briar spotted him he tilted his head to the side looking up into his eyes. "You're very hard to find. I have succeeded. I will not lose you again." He was about to lash out when the older woman behind him let out a laugh and a coo. "What a cute one. Is this your brother? He's so adorable." She reached over and pinched Oscar's cheeks. The boy's fists clenched and he whirled around to look up at the woman. A wave of mental power only Briar could feel making it clear that he intended to lash out.

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XX Briar Harvent

Oscar. Oscar. Oscar. The name sounds in Briar's head like a flashing red sign- a warning. Danger. Briar feels like every joint in his body is on lockdown. He can't move, can't react. How could he? They're in a public supermarket at peak business hours, the store is full of customers, and Oscar is in a child's body. Whatever he does, he'll be putting innocent strangers in harm's way. And even if Oscar doesn't act out, the strangers will, because all they'll see is a grown man attacking a child. xx
Oscar's words make Briar's blood run cold and his instincts are telling him to run, even as the line moves forward a tiny bit and he forces himself to drop his groceries onto the conveyor belt, eyes never leaving Oscar's. The air between them is thick and Briar can tell Oscar is ready to pounce. xx
"What a cute one. Is this your brother? He's so adorable." A tiny, shriveled old woman in line behind them coos, and to Briar's horror, starts prodding at Oscar as if he were her own grandchild. xx
All those years of observing Oscar's facial expressions in an attempt to understand him isn't lost on Briar even after so long apart. He knows what that wide, shaking glare means, knows that if he doesn't get them out of the public eye, people are going to get very hurt very soon. Briar's hand shoots out and grabs Oscar by the shoulder, pulling him roughly out of the woman's grasp and to his side. "Yes, ma'am, he is, but I'm afraid he doesn't like being touched, if you don't mind." xx
People are watching them now. "My apologies, young man." The woman says, looking shaken. Briar doesn't wait around for something to go wrong, simply smiles sweet as he can to the woman and guides Oscar out of the store quick as he can without arousing too much suspicion. He steers them around a corner and into an alleyway against his better judgement. Once they're out of sight, Briar lets of of Oscar and backs away from him, trying to calm himself down without looking too pathetic. He's too tense, too out of practice- if they fight right now, there's no way Briar will win. xx
It isn't until Oscar is standing in front of him, at full height, blue eyes staring straight into his own, that Briar realizes how badly he's fucked up. He's trapped himself. If Oscar can get into his head - and Briar knows he can - then everything he's been wanting to hide, to keep safe, is forfeit. xx
Adriel, Matthias, their children- everything. He can't breathe, feels himself shaking. He's scared. xx
(Even if the Institute does capture him, he doubts they'll be able to use him for anything of value. Information, perhaps. But Adriel and Matthias are strong- they can fight back. They can win. But Briar himself? His power is all he has. And what use is insta-kill if he's too cowardly to use it?) xx

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XX Oscar Wilson

Oscar had been ready to lash out and kill the woman. It would have been easy, fun even but as he felt Briar's hand on his shoulder he stopped. As he was pulled away, his body automatically relaxes slightly almost as if on instinct, some part of him recognised Briar. Oscar finds himself not himself, emotions that weren't his filled his body as unconsciously he noted he was being led away. He was too focused on Briar, or rather the emotions that were pouring into him from the touch. He was so lost he didn't even notice they had stopped until Briar pulled away. Oscar missed the touch almost instantly he was still processing what those emotions were when his blank emotions were all he had. Oscars face shifted from the cold look to a confused one. He stared at Briar as he backed away, a cold and calculating voice said now was the best time to a brain scan, the target was defenceless and too scared to fight back.

Scared. He is scared. A twinge of achievement filled him as he placed the emotion he had felt on Briar. Fear. But why? Why was Briar scared? They were friends, weren't they? That thought made him snap out of the confusion. This form was compromised, thinking things like that was his younger selfs faults. He shifted back into his adult form and stepped closer to Briar.

His eyes looked at Briar up and down before focusing in on those eyes. Those familiar eyes. Kill, attack, gain information, capture. His mission was clear, but why was he hesitating?!? He reached up and rested his hand on Briar's cheek opening himself up to the emotions again. The Briar he had remembered was colder than this, he'd been trained like he had to keep emotions locked away. But now, the man's emotions ran free. Oscar could almost taste the bitter feeling of fear. He kept his hand on Briar's cheek and stepped forward almost pinning him against the stone.

Why wasn't he attacking Briar? How did Briar feel? Why was it fear, what did fear feel like when it was yours? Was it different. "Fear. You are scared. How? Why" Oscar paused before dropping his hand to the side he stepped back a frown on his face, a facial expression that was new. "Why am I here? It was not my mission to find you. Why did I want to find you? Why do....- Oscar flinched in pain as he doubled over clutching his head. He was not supposed to question his orders. He had been about too. This pain was not something he'd felt since he was a child. The pain of too much information at once, he used to have it often. Processing thoughts and emotions that weren't his was too much sometimes. Oscar recoiled his eyes pushed closed. He was asking too many questions, it wasn't his place. He had to focus, what was he supposed to focus on? When he was younger he used Briar to centre himself but now.... could he still do that? No, using someone to focus required them to approach you as a blank slate, to trust you are you used their thoughts in centre yourself. What could he use?

Mission. Mission. Mission.

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XX Briar Harvent

Oscar's hand presses against his cheek and Briar starts, not having expected the gentleness of the touch. His skin is soft and the touch is warm and Briar is momentarily thrown for a loop. But his eyes stay on Oscar and he watches the man's face twist, indecision clear in his features. From cold determination to confusion to something Briar can't place- blue eyes staring so intensely into his own that Briar almost feels like he's looking at the Oscar of his memories. Could that be possible? xx
(Of course it's possible. He has to believe it's possible, or it'll be like losing Oscar a second time.) xx
"Fear. You are scared. How? Why?" Briar doesn't breathe, can't breathe. "Why am I here? It was not my mission to find you. Why did I want to find you? Why do-" Briar sees the flash of pain in Oscar's eyes and his heart hurts with him. Oscar is struggling, struggling against the years of conditioning, the emotions he's forgotten how to manage, his own thoughts, wants and desires. xx
Tentatively, Briar reaches for Oscar, praying he won't react and lash out. "It's okay," He whispers through shaking breaths. "You're okay." Slowly, every so slowly, Briar pulls Oscar close until he can wrap his arms around him, not so tight as to suffocate him but tight enough to keep motions limited should he try to attack. Briar doesn't know if this will help- doesn't know if Oscar knows what affection feels like, anymore, but he has to try. He has to try and get through to him- has to. xx
"When were kids, you would hold me like this after we were punished. I never understood." He says, praying to be heard. "You taught me what it meant to be human and I want... I want you to join me. I want you to stop doing what other people tell you to do. The Institute- they don't care about you, never cared about us. You- I want you to see that, to understand that." xx
What the fuck am I saying?! There's no way he's going to believe me! Briar is still scared, but he shoves the feeling deep down. Oscar won't believe him. But what's the point if he never tries? xx

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XX Oscar Wilson

Oscar's mind felt like it was trying to rip him apart. The pain was overwhelming to a point he lost all track of who he was, where he was. He needed to focus. Focus on something. His nails dug into his hand as he tried to push through the pain with more pain. His nails drawing blood that pooled in his palm and dripped away into the endless void beyond his senses. Being numb wasn't as painful as this, he knew how to become numb. That part of his mind leered at him for the weakness of pain and emotions. It would be so easy to reach out and take it. Reach out and become numb again.

Just as he starts to pull that cold part of him closer he feels it. Arms around him pulling him in close, his face pressed against the chest of another body. He could hear a heartbeat, thumping quickly against his ear and heard the voice that seemed to resonate inside him like a dream he used to have but had since forgotten. "You're okay." Was he? Is he? What was this? "When we were kids, you would hold me like this after we were punished." He did? Vague memories filled his head of those moments. Moments that had felt so far away. Feelings he'd forgotten how to feel. Feelings that weren't just anger and fear and pain. He felt his body relax into the hold and his eyes closed as the pain, whilst still present, died down slightly. A calm feeling overtaking him. "I want you to join me." New orders. He could work with that. New orders could stop this pain. It always stopped when he did what he was told. He pulled away from the grip slowly to look at the face in front of him. A blank look crossed on his face. Care? What was that like? He reached out again and rested a hand on the others bare skin processing the things he got from Briar. "You. You are still scared. Why? I don't understand what your saying." Oscar glanced behind him towards the open street like he would find the source there. "Mission..... I.. can't..." Right his mission. What had his mission been? Find Briar, he'd found him. Now what? Oscar stood up spotting a passerby staring at him. Was his mission to take this person out? Briar was scared. Did this person make Briar afraid? He glanced at Briar as if waiting for orders stood at near attention.

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  • Silhouette
    by cl.love on Mon Aug 19, 2019 2:54 pm
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Most recent OOC posts in Silhouette

Re: Silhouette

Biglittleorme

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    [justify][font=century gothic][size=380][color=transparent]XX[/color] [color=#40bf80][b][i]Brady bunch[/i][/b][/color][/size]

    [size=130]Briar would wake up to two very small faces pressed up against his. One face belonging to a young 2-year-old boy who seems to be half asleep and the girl around 4 years old seems to be the spitting image of Adriel as a child. Her wild hair messed up in all different directions and her pyjamas covered in chibi strawberries and strangely the scent of flowers and strawberries following her. Her face was a mixture of confusion and excitement as she hugged a small bear to her chest. [color=pink] [b] "Who are you? Why are you in Mummy and Daddy's bed? Do you want a strawberry?" [/color] [/b] She holds out an empty hand and for a second Briar would of thought it was imaginary. Then slowly in her hand a small strawberry plant starts to grow. Until she has a plant growing a single fresh and ripe strawberry. Which the boy takes much to her protest. It's at that point a growl comes from Adriel's mouth and the two kids freeze eyes wide. A grumpy looking Adriel peels herself from the cuddle pile and glares at her children. [color=#611482] [b] "Is your sun up?" [/b] [/color] The girl shifts her feet. [color=pink] [b] "No... but Fluffy said-" [/color] [color=#611482] "I don't care what fluffy said you know the rules."[/color] [/b] It's at this point Matthias chuckles and slips out of the bed. [color=blue] [b] "Come on you two let's get you some breakfast and let Mummy sleep." [/b] [/color] He scooped them both up in each arm tickling the boy to make him giggle and stepped out of the room a large Saint Barnard dog running at his heels backing and following them. [color=pink] [b] "Daddy! Fluffy needs to go!" [/color] [color=blue] "Rose don't shout sweetie I'll let fluffy outside in a second." [/color]  [/b] There's a sound of a door opening and through the open doorway that Matthias left behind is a young boy around 12/13, but his feet don't touch the floor as he silently creeps past seemingly intending not to disturb the grumpy, pregnant lady.  [/size][/font][/justify]


cl.love

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[justify][font=century gothic][size=380][color=transparent]XX[/color] [color=#82BCAD][b][i]Briar Harvent[/i][/b][/color][/size]
[size=130][color=black]Briar, despite the Institute and its routines being a full five years in the past, is a light sleeper. It doesn't take much to wake him- a racoon knocking over a trash can, two cats having sex down the street, someone walking past his bedroom. This morning in particular, it's two doe-eyed children.[/color] [color=transparent]xx[/color]
[color=black]He watches Matthias disappear down the hall with three kids in tow, and reflects on everything that's gone on in the few short minutes he's been awake. It's without question that their daughter and older son - which confuses Briar a bit, because there's no way they have a twelve-year-old if they've only been free for four years, but that's a question for later - are Supernaturals. Watching a strawberry plant grow from a little girl's hand and bear fruit within ten seconds is something Briar is immensely intrigued by, and the older boy- can he levitate? Fly? Both of them are spectacular.[/color] [color=transparent]xx[/color]
[color=black]Briar instantly chides himself for leaving their littlest boy out of his silent praises, because he was adorable, and if Briar had been in his place, he probably would've stolen that strawberry too. It's like he's living in a dream, a dream where the Institute never existed and he's simply built a life with Matthias and Adriel, with their three beautiful children and gigantic dog named [i]Fluffy[/i] of all things, with their fixer-upper house they remodeled themselves and their too-energetic neighbors.[/color] [color=transparent]xx[/color]
[color=black]Adriel burrows back into their blanket pile to sleep some more and Briar stifles a giggle. Even when they were kids and supposed to be able to wake up at a moment's notice, Adriel has never been a morning person, and Briar thinks it's funny how [i]that's[/i] what stuck with her all these years.[/color] [color=transparent]xx[/color]
[color=black]Briar carefully climbs out of newly-dubbed Heat Mountain and gets dressed, skipping a shower only because trying to figure out how their system works feels like too daunting a task right now. As he walks through the hall, he peeks into open doors. A bathroom with little stools stashed by the sink, toothbrushes in cups on the counter, various succulents printed on the shower curtain. One of the bedrooms holds a bunk bed, half the room a mess of toys while the other half is immaculately clean, and another of the bedrooms is really more of a greenhouse than a bedroom.[/color] [color=transparent]xx[/color]
[color=black]Matthias is in the kitchen cooking when Briar makes it downstairs, and the kids are all sat at the table, the younger two practically bouncing while they wait for breakfast. Briar forces himself to not act as awkward as he feels, and carefully sits by Rose, who is smiling from ear to ear as she pats the chair next to her with enough force that the floor shakes a little. He's barely sat down when a barrage of questions begins, but Briar gives full attention. "[/color][color=pink][b]Hi, my name is Rose Marie Herod! What's your name? What's your favorite color? Do you like strawberries? What's your superpower? How do you know my mummy and daddy? Will you play with me? Do-[/b][/color][color=black]"[/color] [color=transparent]xx[/color]
[color=black]Briar can't help but laugh, and Rose stops her questions to watch him, instead going back to bouncing, eager for his responses. "[/color][color=#82BCAD][b]It's been a while since anyone's wanted to know that much about me.[/b][/color][color=black]" He says, smiling at Rose, who smiles back twice as bright. "[/color][color=#82BCAD][b]Well, my name is Briar Harvent. It's nice to meet you, Rose. Blue is my favorite color, but they're all pretty nice. I've never actually had strawberries. And my superpower is... uh...[/b][/color][color=black]" Briar pauses, unsure how to explain. "[/color][color=#82BCAD][b]Hm. Here, may I take your hand?[/b][/color][color=black]" Briar glances at Matthias. Matthias nods back.[/color] [color=transparent]xx[/color]
[color=black]"[/color][color=pink][b]So, Rose, what's [i]your[/i] favorite color?[/b]" "[/color][color=pink][b]Pink![/b][/color][color=black]" "[/color][color=#82BCAD][b]Good choice! Here goes,[/b][/color][color=black]" Briar concentrates, and the roots of Rose's dark hair start to change color, washing down her curls until it's all a soft baby pink. Briar gently pulls forward a lock of hair for Rose to see and she squeals. "[/color][color=#82BCAD][b]I can change the cells in your body. Which means I can fix cuts or bruises just by touching you.[/b][/color][color=black]"[/color] [color=transparent]xx[/color]
[color=black]Briar doesn't say how he can hurt someone as easily as he can heal them, because these kids don't need to know, and he wants to keep that kind of harshness from them as long as he possibly can.[/color] [color=transparent]xx[/color]
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Re: Silhouette

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XX Side Characters
Briar is 20 during present-day. Oscar is 19, but nearing his 20th birthday. Adriel is 24 and Matthias is 25. Maia is 28 and Aiden is 27. Cedar is 19. Nick is 14. Lily is 8.

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Rebellion - Lily is a little girl under the rebellion's protection. Her ability is Truth, meaning no one, supernatural or not, can say anything but the truth in her presence. She can also sense the truth in inanimate objects; for example, she can touch a body and know that the person was murdered, even though they appear to have died accidentally. Her ability is incredibly powerful and as such her existence is kept rather secret- few members of the rebellion know about her, and even fewer have actually met her.

Re: Silhouette


Re: Silhouette

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Squad W - Alongside Briar and Oscar are three other supernaturals, who were trained with them at the Institute from around 8-10 years of age. Whistle, (Adriel), the only girl, is a long-range fighter whose ability is to mimic sounds, whether those be natural sounds or voices. She is good with a bow and arrow, particularly a longbow, and prefers them over guns. Walker, (Matthias), is a melee fighter whose ability is to... well, essentially smite. He can blow people's heads off. Through the power of thought. Like One Punch Man. Whirlpool, (Maximus), is a melee and range fighter whose ability is to manipulate water. He can shape water however he wants- liquid, ice, steam. He can even control blood.

Rebellion - Briar lives in a two story house on the opposite end of the city from the Institute. He lives with several other rebellion members. Cedar is his roommate, a small boy who can control gravity (think Uraraka from BNHA) around any point. He's known for being energetic and aggressive, and his abilities seep out with his emotions. Maia is an older member, more like a leader, who can read minds and push thoughts or ideas into other people's minds. Aiden is Maia's husband, who doesn't have an ability but is military trained. Nick is Maia's adopted son brother, the youngest of the group, and has the ability to control electronics, making him skilled with computers and hacking.

Silhouette

uwu

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