Twinepathy (Part 37): Dismissed

Hullo, everyone! I’m going to be honest here and tell you that this part was one of my favorites to write. Just because… well, it was fun. Still working on that special announcement for you guys – hopefully I’ll get that finished soon! 🙂 Check out part one if you’re new.

Everyone in the room goes still, except for Jen, The Finch, and Keller. Jen responsible? Causing amnesia somehow? That seems absolutely ridiculous, but… it’s possible, isn’t it?

“What?!” Blaze nearly shrieks. “That’s nuts!”

I hear a low growl from Anvil‘s direction and turn to see his eyes flashing and his fists clenched. I shrink back in my chair and quickly look over at The Finch. He’s leaning forward, contemplating Jen with an interested look.

Jen sighs. “If I could, I would let you go in my head and see that I had nothing to do with it. But I can’t.”

“You mean you won’t,” Keller says, lifting and eyebrow.

“No, I mean that I can’t,” Jen says firmly. “I told you no one’s ever been able to get in my head. I’ve tried to let people in, and it never works.” She motions to the door. “Com can’t even get in – he has to do a special signal thing.” She gives a lopsided smile that looks a little sad. “I’m not really a telepath, anyways.”

“And how do I know that’s the truth?” Keller retorts.

Jen’s computer starts rattling on her desk, and I see Brooklyn grab her earrings out of the corner of my eye. Everything metal on me – zippers, the little metal circle thingies on my shoes, my empty locket necklace – starts vibrating. Jen leaps to her feet. “Cade, you’re dismissed,” she says firmly.

Cade?

Anvil‘s voice is thick with anger. “Data does. Not. Lie,” he growls, stepping towards Keller. She looks at him, eyes wide, and I think this must be the first time she’s truly been afraid of someone.

“Cade.” Jen’s voice sounds as dangerous as the look in her eye. “You. Are. Dismissed.”

Anvil‘s anger seeps out a little, and the metal in the room stops vibrating. He exhales slowly, then spins on his heel and disappears through the door. Jen relaxes and sits back down in her chair. “Back to it, then. Keller, I can’t prove—”

Keller holds up a hand. “Stop. You’re just going to completely ignore what just happened? He…”

“He did nothing,” Jen says calmly. “You made him angry, but nothing happened, and he didn’t threaten you.”

Keller stares at Jen, then rubs her forehead. “Right. Sure. Go on, then.”

“I can’t prove that I’m not involved,” Jen says quietly. “But we need you if we’re going to find out who is behind it, and as much as I’m sure you hate to admit it, you can’t do it on your own.” Jen leans forward and looks Keller in the eye. “You need us, Keller. Will you join?”

Keller looks from Jen to Maddie, then back to Jen. She sighs. “No, I won’t.” Jen straightens, and Keller continues. “Oh, I’ll help you find this jerk. But I’m not going to join this group. I don’t do well with rules or other people or their secrets.” She gives Jen a pointed look. “I’ll help, but I’m keeping my independence. Got it?”

How can she bargain like that with Jen? Jen’s frowning, but she has a look of quiet respect, too. “We have a deal.” She offers a hand to Keller, and they shake on it.

I clear my throat, and Jen turns to look at me. “I just have one question. Where’s Volt?”

Twinepathy (Part 36): Finch And Anvil

Hullo, everyone! For those of you who were interested in Finch… you’ll get a better look at him in this part! And… we get to meet one of my FAVORITEST characters. *rubs hands gleefully* I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on them… oh, and look out for a special post some time this week with big news… Speaking of news, if you’re new, check out Part One.

The Finch looks at us and gives us a polite nod. He looks disinterested, but I can see the truth in his eyes – pain. I feel a pang for him. Maddie lost just eight, nine, ten years… how old is she?… due to the amnesia, but he lost so much more, probably over twenty years. I’m sure it’s changed him, hurt him. And he might never get that back. Maddie might not get her years back, either, and then what of her relationship with Keller? They were clearly close before, and yet I’ve seen Keller’s pain, too. And what of The Finch’s siblings, parents, family… girlfriend? “Nice to meet you,” he says, his voice flat.

Jen motions to some chairs that I know weren’t here the last time. They must have been brought in just for this occasion. We all sit down, and I notice Keller watching Maddie, her expression pained. “Now all we need is Anvil,” Jen says.

Blaze noticeably perks up at that. “Really? I get to meet the mysterious, elusive, efficient Anvil?”

Jen gives him a withering glare. “Don’t start, Blaze.”

Blaze leans forward, interest sparking in his eyes. “But I haven’t even seen this guy, Data! I haven’t! He’s been here for how long?”

“Three years,” Jen says tiredly.

“Exactly!” Blaze waves a hand in the air. “And I haven’t seen him once. Neither have any of the other agents I’ve talked to.”

“Blaze.” Jen’s voice is tight with warning.

“I just don’t get why this guy’s so special and secret,” Blaze continues, ignoring Jen. “I mean, it’s not like his powers are that different from other manipulators…”

“Hello, Anvil. Have a seat,” Jen says politely, tossing Blaze something between a glare and a smirk.

We all turn. Behind us stands a tall guy, probably close to Jen’s age, his posture forced casual and his hands in the pockets of his leather jacket. I get the feeling he’s uncomfortable, but his face is a mask, not giving anything away. His eyes, though, have a spark of… danger. It makes me glad that Keller and Jen are here, in spite of Keller’s hostility and Jen’s secrets.

“I’ll stand,” he says, his voice quiet but strong.

This is probably the first time I’ve ever seen Blaze embarrassed, but he definitely is. Jen nods at Anvil. “All right.”

“That’s definitely him,” Keller speaks up, eyeing Anvil suspiciously.

“I assumed so,” Jen says with a small smile. “Ca… Anvil, why don’t you go ahead and report on that mini-assignment I gave you last week, so everyone here can know what happened?”

Anvil gives us all a suspicious once-over. “Trav dropped me off, and I headed over to the house. I noticed I was being followed. It was her,” he adds as an afterthought, nodding at Maddie. “She didn’t seem like much of a threat, so I stopped her and asked her to deliver the ‘package’. I watched her go up to the house and then slipped off to a safe observation point and saw her,” he motions toward me, “take it inside, so I figured the girl had dropped it there…”

“You?!” Blaze exclaims incredulously. “You’re the one who messed this up?”

Anvil‘s eye’s flash, but a warning look from Jen is enough to subdue both of them, at least temporarily. “No one messed anything up. In fact, this has turned out better than I could’ve hoped, except for Maddie.” Jen gives Maddie a sympathetic look and receives a shy look in return. She turns to Keller. “Does this satisfy you?”

Keller crosses her arms. “It explains how L… Maddie ended up where she is, but it still doesn’t convince me that you’re not responsible for her amnesia.”