22 Years Ago
As Clarke drove them down the street, Frederic rested his chin on his sleeping daughter's head while his son looked blankly at out the passenger window.
"He should sit in the back," Clark said.
"He's fine up here with me," Frederic cut him off and put his hand protectively on Joseph's shoulder.
"Well, fine then, I guess he'll get to hear it" Clarke said smugly, "We can start negotiations."
"I'm not going to work for you," he said angrily. I had a clean break after I turned eighteen. My contract ended and I left and you can find more agents to fill the gap."
"Oh, I think you'll join. Like I've already said, you can only hide your kids so well for so long."
"If you have any problems, then be man enough to take it up with me, only a coward goes behind my back and attacks my family."
'How about I offer you a deal? None of us will attack your family if you come to work for us."
He looked at him and scoffed, "With what you're suggesting, I'd never see them again?"
"That would be the indication, yes. Well, I know that it's a hard thing to think about, Braun, but what better sacrifice can a father give except one that protects his family from all threats at all costs? It's the greatest gift for a father to give."
"And if I refuse, you'll do what?"
"Well, you did kill two people today; I'd hate to see you throw your life away in prison on account of something as trivial as that. Why not give your life to do something useful? You know how many lives you could save?"
"You know how many lives I'd ruin?"
"Alright," Clarke sighed, "If you're going to be this stubborn about it, then I see I have no choice but to tell you outright. It wasn't a coincidence that that fire started in the apartment when your children were in there. I got an interesting call from one of my agents that said that your daughter burned a hole through the car upholstery just by thinking about it. Your children are going to be important one day, Frederic, and we're going to need you to handle them in case we have to bring them in. Your daughter burned down those apartments today, because someone pissed her off. Now normally that would mean us taking her right to the labs for testing. However, if you come to work for us, then I guarantee you that won't happen unless absolutely necessary. I'll even send a superhuman here to make sure that your kids don't even remember today. That should save your son a bit of trauma, now won't it?"
"Daddy," Joseph whispered, "No."
Joseph would probably never understand how much he wanted to refuse the offer. And how much he wanted to take his entire family and go into hiding and try to forget that the last few years ever took place, but he couldn't. He couldn't risk this again, because if they came after the kids like they did today then he might not be so lucky in getting them back.
"Let me say goodbye to my wife," he said calmly, "I'll need to give her some explanation as to where I'm going."
"Very well," he pulled the car to a stop and climbed out. "I have a ride of my own; I look forward to seeing you at work in the morning.
Frederic folded his arms against his chest and watched the remaining soldiers stumble out of trees with various cuts and bruises. Somewhere just barely able to walk, others were helping or carrying the others.
"What happened in there?" Kyrie asked.
"One of those freaks brought down the helicopter," the soldier snarled, "Right on us."
"Where are the targets?"
"We accidently shot one and he fell into the river."
Frederic turned his head suddenly, "Who?"
The man shrugged, "Caucasian? Late twenties? Brown hair I think…"
"You did what?" Frederic stormed forward and the man shrank back.
"Calm down agent Braun," Kyrie got between them.
"Don't you realize that we said to bring them in alive"
"It was an accident. We shot him to repress his ability and we tranqed him. We didn't expect him to fall in the river."
"I work with incompetents!" Frederic yelled and started to storm toward the car.
He stopped however, when a soldier carried a half conscious Naomi on his shoulders. He felt the breath rush from his lungs when the man roughly dropped his daughter on a gurney that would go in the large van.
He stood next to her, "Naomi?"
"Dad," she said half conscious, "Daddy?"
When she realized it was him, she launched off the gurney and grabbed his arm Please don't do this, please let me go. Don't take me to that place, I haven't done anything wrong. I just wanted to see mom, I just had some question, but I promise that I haven't done anything wrong, dad. Please don't do this."
He closed his eyes tightly and tried to ignore her pleas. When she was a child, he couldn't refuse her anything, how ironic now that he had to refuse her the freedom she desperately craved, "Put her in the van."
"No!" she tried to sit up against the restraints, "Dad. No! No, don't put me in there! You're supposed to be my father; you're supposed to protect me! Dad! Don't! Please!"
Her voice was cut short when they shut the back doors.
He turned to meet Kyrie, who glared at him accusingly, "How did you know that she'd be here?"
"Clarke gave me a bit of a vacation and so I went to go see my wife."
She gave a small shrug, "And you think that's a big coincidence, do you? That he gave you a vacation just in time to sell out your own daughter?"
"Of course not, Kyrie. I'm not an idiot. But I'm not going to confront him. Not right now. Not yet. I don't have enough evidence."
"And so you'll just let her go in that place?"
A tear slipped down her face, "You're a monster, you know that?"
"I know," he looked over his shoulder as they drove his daughter away toward the Facility. He'd gone too far tonight, and he was already regretting it. What should have been a victory felt like a horrible defeat, "I know."
Lisa wrapped a red fuzzy robe around herself and yawned. Six-thirty wasn't her time to get up normally. She hated it when it was her turn to get up and turn on the coffee machine. Half the others didn't even take their turns anyway; they just went to the Starbucks across town. But Lord forbid that she miss her turn.
She opened the door and jumped when she found David just on the other side, reaching for the doorknob, "Good, you're awake. Um…something's happened."
"Just…I have to show you, come on." He brought her to stairs that led to the first floor and walked her down. In the meeting room through the glass wall, she saw Joseph, Jane, and Able. Jane was crying, Able was breathing rapidly and looked to be on the verge of hyperventilation, and Joseph stared ahead blankly, obviously in some kind of shock. Joseph and Jane were soaking wet and Able was covered in dirt and scratches.
He looked at her, "Naomi's been taken."
Naomi could barely keep up with the soldiers as they walked her through the hallway. Just from the doors, she could tell that it was some sort of prison ward. There were small rectangles in the middle of the door for delivery of food and a square cut in the doors for observation. Both could be shut and locked on the outside, completely cutting off someone from access to the outside world.
"I didn't want to do this, Naomi, but frankly you gave me no choice," her father told her, "You can have a better room the minute you start cooperating with us and you tell me where the rest of your team is
Through the exhaustion and the fear, she managed a laugh, "Oh, wouldn't you like to know?"
He stopped and pulled her to face him, "Listen to me; they have ways of getting into your mind. These men aren't above torturing you to get what they want."
"I'll never tell you where they are," she said with a smirk that didn't spread to the rest of her face. The rest of her face was paralyzed by fear. "You made a mistake coming after me, father. I'm going to make your job just miserable, I promise you that."
"For your safety, I hope not." He opened a door at the end of the hallway and the men shoved her in there. The room was a lot smaller than the previous cell that she occupied but had a smell that was ten times worse. There was room for a small single bed, a toilet, and a sink, but other than that, she could hardly move.
When she heard the footsteps receding, she dropped the façade and fell to the ground in tears. She couldn't do this. There was no way that she'd be able to hold on as long as she was bragging that she could. Her father could see through it, how long until the others could as well.
No, she had to keep it up. She'd put everyone in danger by making them come after her and they'd almost paid for it. The safety of the others relied completely on her now; she couldn't let them down again. It was time to show all of them that they were wrong. That despite this horrible mistake she made she was still a LOT stronger than what they gave her credit for.
But even her brother, who was stronger than she was, broke under these people. He even worked for her.
"Hey," a voice on the other side of a vent demanded, "What's the crying for? You're acting like it's you first day here"
"That's because it is," she sat on her bed and leaned against the wall, "Or I think it is. I don't…I don't know how long I've been here. Do you know what day it is?"
Bernard Harving smirked from the other side of the wall, "You lose track of the days here. What's your name?"
"Naomi Braun, who are you?"
He scoffed to himself. Well, he knew that he'd be meeting her eventually, he just didn't expect it to be this soon, "You lose track of your name too. They torture it right out of you."
He heard her quiet gasp and smirked wider at the lie, "Don't worry, I can help you through this. And if they don't inspect the cells and realize that we can communicate, then maybe if we talk long enough and gain each other's trust, then….maybe we can walk out of here."