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Broken Heroes | An original superhero mystery RP [R]

Tangeh

Well-Known Member
Jared Caswell
The Institute – Dining Room (West Wing)


Jared sipped at his tea as he listened to his siblings express confusion and doubt over the dog. Nobody else claimed to have seen it, and June even insisted that made no sense, as Renata was allergic to dogs and strictly prohibited them. That made sense, but Jared had seen it with his own eyes... right? Or... maybe he was just overtired...? No, the others heard strange noises – it had to have been a dog. Ginny asked what else it could have been, and Jared didn't have time to reiterate his certainty on the matter before another staff member arrived on scene and marched up to June. Jared faintly recognized him, but didn't remember his name until June asked if “Pedro” had a message.

He did – that the solicitors were here to discuss the wills. Jared let out a slow breath. This should have some sense of finality to it – the will, what they were all here for... right?

...So then why did Jared feel that this was only the start of something deeper? The answers he craved were surely hidden somewhere other than in the middle of legal jargon and the final wishes of three people who had never loved him. This was nothing more than a necessary formality, and he honestly wanted nothing to do with it.

June interrupted Pedro as he mentioned something had happened to Priya – a name Jared recognized from Lucas's letters. More secrets. Jared took more beans and toast. Maybe it would settle the ache that was settling in his stomach.

A gentle nudge caused Jared to turn. There had always been something about Lyn's smile that was contagious in the worst of times, and Jared smiled back at her. She apologized for disappearing, asked Jared how he'd slept, and then in a hushed whisper asked what June and Pedro were talking about. Jared hesitated, his eyes flicking to June, then he whispered back at Lyn, “dog in here somewhere, Lucas had a lover, and a kid, we think – found letters last night.” He kept his stare neutral, innocent, although maybe it would be easier just to come clean about what they already knew. He'd rather not upset June in front of everybody, otherwise he would.

He probably should have filled in Cameron too, as he loudly questioned what June and Pedro were trying to hide and then ran out of the room to get changed. Jared overheard Morgan asking Ginny if they could all share contact information with each other. Twelve years later... and Ginny agreed lightheartedly, even suggesting they could meet her daughter. Ginny's daughter – Jared's niece. The faces around Jared had aged, changed, maybe scarred, but not broken. A reminder of a nightmare that only the twelve of them – nine of them – eight of them? - would ever be able to relate to.

He had needed to get away to heal, and his birth status provided his furthest option in India. If any of them had wanted to, they could have gotten his contact information years ago. He hadn't changed this P.O. Box since the day he gave the information to Lilith – if any of his siblings needed him he couldn't risk closing it, even if he couldn't afford the rupees to mail them his information himself.

He'd only ever heard from Lilith.

“Wait.”

June's voice snapped Jared out of his thoughts. She looked over each of them as if weighing a heavy decision, then sighed and confirmed what the letters from last night suggested. That Priya was Lucas's partner – practically his wife, though their parents had hidden this from the media. Jared couldn't stop a grimace. Not only that, but they'd brought a child into the world together, who – as far as June knew – was still living with her maternal grandparents. Priya had passed away two years ago from an unknown illness. Jared's heart ached at the story – partly because it was a story that could have applied to any of them had they obediently stayed under the iron rule of Matthew and Renata.

The Parlour

After dropping that bombshell on them, Pedro led the somber group of siblings into the parlour. Jared was always strictly forbidden from entering it – he supposed they were all discouraged from it, but there must have been something in here Matthew desperately did not want decimated. He looked around the room for the first time – ah, an expensive alcohol cabinet. Well, that explained it. Jared mused over whether his siblings had ever snuck anything from it under Matthew's nose. The only one of them brave enough to that would have been -

“Gale?”

Jared blinked, not trusting his eyes. Gale was leisurely sprawled on the sofa, sipping straight from one of Matthew's prized bottles. Relief washed over him. He hadn't realized how worried about Gale he had been. He almost laughed. Instead, the corner of his mouth twitched into a grin. Even now, Gale made him feel safe – the only one who would stand up for him, who would stand up against their parents.

...So why was she here?
 
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Monster Guy

Fairy type Trainer
Cameron Caswell
Dining Room (West Wing), The Institute


After Cameron came back down from getting changed into his casual clothes. June told everyone a story about who Priya was. Apparently, she was Lucas' partner. 'Aww, how sweet.' Cameron thought. 'Big bro found someone!' Apparently the only thing that stopped them from getting married was their parents. How rude! Not only were they close, but apparently they had a daughter together, Yashvi. Cameron clapped his hands excitedly. "Yay! I'm an uncle again! I can't wait to meet the kid!" He was thrilled by the news. So far the only sibling he knew that had kids was Ginny. He was getting dirty looks from the others, and stopped.

Then it was revealed that the daughter was left with her grandmother. Cameron was disappointed, Was he going to get to meet his niece? Things got worse when it was revealed that Priya had passed away suddenly. The room was uncomfortably tense now. He had to say something to lighten things up. "So... is it possible for us to meet Yashvi? She is our niece after all." Cameron laughed and rubbed the back of his head nervously. He wasn’t expecting an answer.

The Parlour

After that, Pedro led them all to the Parlour. They had mostly been forbidden from going here as kids, so discovering a new place to explore in the house you grew up in was an exciting prospect. It was filled with books, dusty antiques, and an alcohol cabinet that Cameron didn't have any interest in whatsoever.

There were also three large sofas in front of a fireplace. Sitting on one of the sofas, was a familiar face. Cameron's own face lit up to see this person. "OMYGOSH, IT’S GALE HI!" The blonde young man exclaimed as he ran on top of the sofa. "It's me, Cameron! Do ya remember me? Do ya, do ya, do ya?" He jumped up and down on the sofa and started babbling. Cameron was sure a staff member or a sibling would tell him to stop jumping on the couch. That was how things always went. Honestly, they were in a room he was never allowed to be in before, and he was an adult, If he wanted to jump on the sofa (with shoes on no less.) that was his perrogative.
 
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VampirateMace

Internet Overlord
Dr. Morgan Caswell
(Dining Room > Hall > Parlor) The Institute, Cambridgeshire


Morgan smiled softly, kind of sadly, at the comments of Mira meeting her aunts and uncles, and nodded himself. Not actively trying to keep in touch with the others had had consequences. He clearly had 'nieces and nephews' he didn't know. They weren't technically related, however he still thought of these nieces and nephews' parents as his siblings. But even though that felt bad, he had desperately needed to get the institute out of his head back then, so it wasn't without reason that he didn't go out of his way to contact anyone, and he wasn't sure he wouldn't do the exact same thing if he had it to do again. Honestly, being back here was like a bad dream. It didn't quite feel real. Or maybe his current life didn't quite feel real while he was here. No, don't think like that, he told himself, shaking his head softly.

Once Cam returned, they headed out to met the legal team, only stopping once, early on, to talk about. . . Pryia and Yashvi. A lover and a lovechild. Yes, there it was, Morgan had suspected there was something going on with Lucas and that mystery woman. But for the idealized hero to have a lovechild, oh, the scandal. Still Morgan had to wish anyone but June could explain it as he grumbled softly to himself, “they're not our parents!”

He wanted to hear this though, Lucas' story, the details, so he didn't argue too loudly, just wondered why did she insist on patronizing them with this lie? How indoctrinated was she? He nodded at the explanation of Yashvi being kept away from them. If he'd been forced to stay and had a child, he'd have wanted the same for them. But Lucas chose to stay, didn't he? How did he put up with this crap for so long?

Some of the others, like Jared, were quieter than Morgan, and some like Cameron were loud and opinionated, maybe even obnoxious. Morgan couldn't help but glare at him breifly for talking over June. Morgan was quiet by the end though. It was not a happy story, and while he had some distaste for June, he could appreciate her honestly emotional response to Pryia's death.


Parlor:

The group was led to Matthew's private parlor, a place few of them had been inside of very often, if he understood correctly. Morgan could recall having been inside twice, once when he was fairly young and ran off on his own one nights and became interested in the room when he saw the big books though the open door (a Janet had carried him out promptly and told him gently that some places are off limits), and once when he was a bit older and had made too much noise while terrorizing an unrelated Janet. At the time, Matthew had dragged him inside by the elbow and demanded he'd apologized to his guests for making so much noise, before shoving him out again and locking the door with a distinctive click. There was never another word on his trying to disassemble a Janet that day, and years later, he assumed Matthew had so much on his mind, he hadn't really realized what Morgan was doing.

Today the parlor was weird, liminal maybe, though practically the same. Now it was open to them, but devoid of the man that had ruined their childhoods. Looking around the room now with adult eyes he understood the books were all for show, none of them would be so interesting on the inside as they were on the shelf, intended to accent the antiques, and provide atmosphere for the fine liquor locked away in the fancy cabinet.

He turned his attention to the couches, a couple people were in the room already, one of them being a maid whose name he couldn’t be bothered to remember, and one a sibling he'd not seen yesterday, Gale. Drinking that liquor Matthew valued so much, straight from the bottle. Morgan smiled for half a second, and heard others call her name, then all hell broke lose. And by hell, I mean Cameron. He screamed to Gale, started questioning her like, well, a child, and started jumping on the couch like one. Morgan sighed and suggested, “Cam, come on, stop, you're going to break something. I'm sure she remembers you.”

How could anyone forget?

In all honesty he didn't care if Cameron broke something, except maybe his leg. But he doubted that was going to happen. He knew from yesterday that Cameron hadn't matured at all, but it was still to early for this ****.
 
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Skillfulness

Well-Known Member
Lilith O'Neil Caswell
The Institute, Cambridgeshire - Dining Room (West Wing)


Lilith was thoroughly confused on all this talk about a dog. She had slept pretty soundly, given the stress she was under, but everyone else seemed to have been woken by or dreamed they heard a dog. Well, now that she thought about it, Lilith might've been a bit restless without her wife sleeping beside and since the morning was her mediation time she might've forgotten that she too had dreamt about a dog. That was eerie enough to cause her to involuntarily shiver as she looked around to her siblings. June explained how there was no way they could've had a dog. Ginny said the question that was on all of their minds, but at that moment, Pedro appeared muttering about the Janets.

"The representative from the solicitors is here to discuss the wills," he announced.

"Wills? As in more than one?" Ginny spoke again, voicing what surely the others must've been thinking. While she had only been expecting a single will between the three departed, it suddenly made sense to Lilith that once he was old enough, Lucas could, and probably would want to, make a will of his own. At least, in her letters back and forth with him she could sense a touch of disdain for the parents as time went on. Her heart ached for him as she thought again of all the years he had to endure their horrible treatment alone. Then again, as they learned last night, he might not have been entirely alone.

"There are two," Pedro confirmed. "Or at least there were. Your parents had one, and Lucas was writing one of his own after what happened to Priya. I think he wanted to make sure that Yash-" When June nudged him to stop, that all but confirmed what they discovered last night in his room. After that, Devin asked to chat with Theo while Cameron, positive as always, proclaimed he needed to change out of his pyjamas. Lilith hadn't even noticed until now that he was indeed still in his sleeping clothes and she suppressed a giggle. He may be fairly naive at times, but Cameron sure knew how to lighten the mood in the most adorable ways. Lyn and Morgan joined them at the table, then Ginny suggested they swap contact information and Lilith lit up.

"Oh definitely! I've collected a few addresses from some of you already, but I'd love to have a complete, up-to-date list that I could share. I really have appreciated those of you who wrote back and the few times I've been able to see some of you for events or what have you. If it's alright with everyone, I'll share my little notes at the end of the day." When Cameron returned from getting dressed, they prepared to meet with the representatives, but June stopped them. She had more to share about Lucas and Pryia.

They met young, a few years after the other siblings had all left. She was a new hire and the two hit it off. Lilith smiled at the thought of Lucas finding love in a constant swirling darkness, but her heart broke at the strain it must have put them under to hide the relationship. And then they had a child. Smartly, they left her with Pryia’s parents and Ginny asked what happened to Pryia. She became sick and Lucas was heartbroken. Lilith sucked in a shaky breath as she fought off the bubbling sorrow she felt for them. At least the two of them were hopefully together now in the afterlife and someday their daughter would join them. But for now, they had to move on so Lilth grasped the rubbing stone in her pocket and followed her siblings with Pedro.

Parlor

Lilith lagged at the back of the group so she heard about the surprise awaiting them before seeing her. Gale had arrived! While excitement was her initial feeling, Lilith suddenly felt dread as she didn’t always handle her abrasive behaviour as well as some of the other siblings. Gale liked conflict while Lilith detested it. She still loved her sister dearly, but there were aspects of her personality that she simply had to… tolerate. While Cameron jumped on the sofa and Morgan scolded him, Lilith shuffled in towards the side of the room and smiled at the scene. It was good to see all the living siblings together again, even if the circumstances were grim.

“Gale, it’s so good to see you, er, alive and well.”* In the room, her eyes darted for Theo. Hopefully she caught her lie and adjusted it before his power kicked in because the last thing she wanted was to cause him more pain. While she was happy to see Gale, the anxiety she felt in seeing her outweighed that joy. Of course, she was definitely glad that her sister was alive and well so she added the sentiment to her statement in hopes of curbing her lie to something truthful enough to keep Theo free of distress. Lilith started rubbing her stone and looking around for anything to distract herself with while they waited.

*Adjusted lie, "good to see you" is a lie, "good to see you alive and well" is truthful, so overall statement is in question
 
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Schade

Party.
Devin Caswell
The Institute
Dining Room -> parlor


Devin didn't really get the chance to wait for Theo's reply in regard to what to do about the will, as after Cameron's return from an outfit change, the group were guided out into the parlor where they would discuss the legal things as a group. Depending on who got to talk, that might en up a disaster, or they could wrap up in time for them all to be on their merry way. "Nevermind then, i guess there won't be any need for that". Devin quickly said to Theo as he stood up, folding his hair into a bun again.

Before they could leave for the parlor, however, June stretched an arm out in front of Pedro while yelling "Wait!" in an overly dramatic fashion. "You want to know who Priya was?" she said, building up suspence. "... No?" Devin said, allthough it seemed his words fell on deaf ears. "I'll tell you." June said. Devin sighed. It took her a few moments to collect herself and find the words. After a heavy sigh, she revealed that the Priya character was Lucas' partner, whereof Pedro was quick to correct her and say that she was practically his wife instead. Devin raised an eyebrow at this information. Lucas hadn't ever seemed the type to date, not to mention have a kid. Apparently, their 'parents' had his this relationship and its fruits from the public eye, as to not cloud over Lucas' image to the thirsty fans. It was downright disgusting listening to how they had done such a thing, allthough Devin didn't hold it above them to do something like that. The thought of Lucas having a living relative felt good though, and June said the child was living with her grandparents on her mothers side. that, at least, was good. Keep her away from this madness as long as possible. Sadly though, Priya herself had passed away due to a strange illness some years prior, and while Devin didn't know anything about the woman it still felt sad hearing about it.

"So... is it possible for us to meet Yashvi? She is our niece after all." Cameron chimed in, being as unconcerned as ever, being met with a glare from Morgan that mirrored how Devin felt about him so rudely interrupting June. "How about we don't, hm?" Devin replied to Cameron. "Let's leave the poor kid out of this business" he finished while geturing to the group. Any chance at a normal life that child had would be thwarted if she became affiliated with the siblings.


Parlor


Following Pedro, the group eventually stopped outside of the ornate mahogany doors, and Devin felt a sudden yet fleeting surge of awe and intimidation; an innate reaction from his childhood when this had been his fathers private study for when he needed a break for either reading or drinking. The children hadn't been allowed in before, and while Devin had always respected that, he would be lying if he wasn't at least a little bit curious as to what was inside.

The room itself had made good use of its relatively scarce space, with book shelves adorning both walls towards a single window located behind a desk. There were several minor antiqueties around in the room, sat up as if they were trophies of some sort. Knowing their father, that was also likely the case to some regard. In one corner stood a cabinet that held a variety of expensive alcohols, most likely paid for with Devin's own power. He did always find it strange that he had to practice his powers on ingot-shaped lumps of clay and dirt. Regardless of that. Any intimidating presence the room might once have held was gone now. In the middle of the room stood 3 sofas. Quite plain, but they definitely built up to the atmosphere of the room. Most notable was the fireplace where some maid Devin didn't recognize was tending the flames, while on one of the sofas sat... Gale?

He couldn't be sure, but the brutish mannerisms of the woman on the couch as well as the developing ball of guilt in his stomach, that was unmistakenly her. She was drinking something from the cabinet straight out of the bottle, ignoring the glass the maid likely had put out for her. Devins raging emotions were calmed down a bit when Cameron broke the tension by practically jumping the woman, climbing onto the couch and jumping while exclaiming his excitement over seeing her again.

Morgan was quick to call Cameron out again, telling him to calm down. The others more calmly expressed their surprise and joy over seeing her again, and Devin also chimed in, somewhat passively. "It's uh.. Good to see you." he quickly said while avoiding eye contact. While she was hands down his least favorite sibling due to her rebellious nature contrasting his own compliant nature when they were kids, having grown up to understand how their parents were full of shit this entire time, he felt regret and remorse for antagonizing her all those years ago.
 

Vern

Why not both?
Evelyn Caswell
Dining Room


“Dog in here somewhere, Lucas had a lover, and a kid, we think – found letters last night.”

Lyn blinked in surprise – Jared’s hushed tone had prepared her for some sort of information of grave importance, but knowledge that their brother had found love, started a family… Lyn prided herself in expecting the unexpected, allowing nothing to catch her off guard, but that information certainly did. To think Lucas had…

Lyn had never experienced love – she’d never had the time for it. The time she hadn’t spent on her grand gestures, she’d spent nursing her wounds, thinking about the past, reliving old memories that weren’t pleasant but were too heavy to let go of.

When she’d left with everyone else, and Lucas had stayed, she’d thought he’d decided to remain in that world with no room for love or other such spurious things, and that he’d do so forever. The image of Lucas she held in her mind had never changed from the Lucas she’d left behind. But Lucas, who was still caught up in that old world, had somehow managed to move beyond it, even while she, who was free, had never even come close.

He’s really something special, huh. She thought, and then corrected herself – was.

Before she could spiral further into that dangerous cycle of thought, Morgan’s voice snapped her out of it. “Maybe before we leave today, we can all share contact information? I don't ever miss this place, but I do miss you guys sometimes.”

Exchanging contact information – as Lyn took out her mobile phone to check her own number, it occurred to her that it’s been years since she last did such a thing. Ever since she’d decided to step on the journey she’d ended up taking, she’d been sealed off from the outside world – a performer never stepped out on stage without their costume, and when the world was your stage, you had no choice but to hide yourself away. Before she could figure out what information she’d actually give her siblings, June’s voice cut into her thoughts.

“Wait. You want to know who Priya was? I'll tell you.”

As June explained the identity of Priya and confirmed the existence of Lucas’s child, Lyn felt herself drifting into thought again. She tried to imagine what Lucas was feeling throughout it all – the loneliness that must’ve consumed him, the hope that came with meeting someone he cold connect with. She winced a bit at the part about marriage, knowing all to well what being out in the public eye like Lucas was meant. And after all that, to have it torn away.

Part of her felt guilty that she’d left Lucas here. It was like she’d abandoned him – maybe if she’d stayed, things would’ve been better. She wondered whether or not she’d trade the thousands of smiles she’d seen for his.

She shook the thought away and stood, following the others as Pedro lead them out of the room.

The Parlour

The parlour of the house was foreign to her – it had always been Matthew’s space, and they were barred from it. Even now, all these years later, it felt vaguely like she was tresspassing. She took in the surroundings with a careful eye, habitually looking for potential hiding spaces, escape routes, weapons… but what she saw next sent all those thoughts flying out the window.

“Gale?” Ginny’s gasp seemed to echo throughout the room as everyone expressed their own shock. Cam seemed to get over it first, running over to hug their long-lost sister.

It couldn’t have been anyone else – while the years had changed her, her distinctive manner of holding herself had not. And neither did the imposing aura she exerted in the air around her. Wherever she went, the air always seemed to crackle with brewing conflict – she could feel the unease emenating from some of her other siblings also, even as they all expressed their relief.

Even after years of practice, she’d never been able to exert the same sort of presence in a room that Gale did. Some people really were just naturals at controlling a space – or maybe it was because of her wind powers actually affecting the air around them?

What a controversial figure. Lyn smiled to herself. These were familiar thoughts, and after not thinking them for years, she suddenly realised she’d missed them.

Out of all the siblings, Gale was someone she was relatively close to – a habitual rule breaker, she’d occasionally helped Lyn out with some of her illicit night performances back when they were all trapped in this house and in desperate need to cheer themselves up. She’d even authored some of the more vicious lines when it came to comedically mocking their parents. Despite her prickly nature, she’d always felt like a big sister to her, which was more than she could say for some of her other siblings.

“Gale, you’re late.” Lyn said in a mock-whine, walking up and giving her sister a playful punch on the shoulder, “Where were you? It felt wrong to see shit hit the fan like that without you being part of the equation.” And then, giving her a smile – “It’s good to see you again. I missed you.

Hopefully, with varied reactions across the board, a light joke and a fairly normal, genuine display of happiness would be enough to diffuse the tension just a little.
 
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GoldenHouou

antagoonist
Theodore Caswell
Dining Room
Morning


Theo was too tired to pay any heed to the conversations around him. The mystery of the supposed dog was all he had energy to think about - and even then, he didn't get far in actually solving it. No explanation made sense. Not with this little caffeine in his system, anyway.

He acknowledged Pedro's arrival with a polite nod, then tuned out from the ensuing exchange between him and June. Something about the Janets. Could them acting up explain the dog? Perhaps one of them had a few literal screws loose and wandered around on all fours last night. It was a silly explanation, but all he could muster at the moment.

... Ah, he needed another cup.

"Theo, you have experience in jurisdiction right?"

Theo mustered the strength to turn. ...Wills? Ah, yes - Pedro mentioned those, didn't he.

"I should hope so," he made an attempt at sounding light-hearted, but his tired expression made the tone come across as dry. "Did you have questions?"

Devin sounded more excited than inquisitive, but Theo wasn't one to judge. He, too, was fascinated by the legal ramifications of their unique family dynamic.

Before they could take their leave to discuss such matters or meet the representative Pedro had talked about however, June spoke up suddenly. Theo did his best to keep attentive as she recited the story of one Priya - Lucas' partner, as she put it. To hear that he had been involved with someone wasn't really a surprise, and Theo felt as though it was none of his business to hear all this information about their brother's private life.

That was, until she offhandedly mentioned experiments to determine whether Lucas' child might've inherited his powers. Theo's eyes widened immediately, his tired mind suddenly awake with worry. He couldn't help but think about his two little girls. What would their lives be like, if they were to suddenly receive the burden of his powers? He'd never thought the powers hereditary. If he'd known, he would have never...

---​

The Parlour

Theo was still deep in thought when they reached their next destination: the parlour. He expected to find the representative waiting for them inside and nervously corrected his posture - only to visibly slump at the reveal that awaited them.

"Gale?" he heard Ginny gasp.

Gale it was, of that there was no doubt. Even so many years later, she was easy enough to recognize. Stormy grey eyes, dark attire and an attitude that was nothing if not out of place in such a fancy establishment.

For a moment, no one said anything. Then Cameron burst into the room, loud enough to wake the dead. Theo winced, but did not have nearly the energy needed to stop him. Morgan made an attempt at least, but it seemed to fall to deaf ears. All it did was cause a familiar pang of pain in Theo's stomach. Another followed soon after - it turned out that though quite a few were genuinely happy to see Gale, Ginny was less so.

He couldn't entirely blame her. Though Theo believed he was glad to see Gale as well, he hesitated to say those words out loud in case they turned out to be untrue due to lingering doubt and envy. So, instead, he opted for a smile and a much safer, "It's been a while. I see you haven't changed."
 
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