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Caleb Holmes
Anarchists Untie
Wed Apr 13, 2005 23:40

“Is she all right?”

Caleb frowned, watching Lucy take off for the dressing rooms like a drunken fool. He knew this was difficult; hell, it was difficult for him! His head still swam, even with Moira standing there, leaning into him like she always had done. But those years were gone…

“I think it’s just a bit much for her, sir,” Caleb quietly confessed to the imposing figure that was his father – father! – and gave a slight shrug. What the hell was he going to say here? “We’ve… been through a lot. Lucy especially.” And I dragged her through it all. Most definitely not the fondest thought he had ever had, and definitely not the best in recent memory.

“Hey… How’s the mask come off?” What the hell was this?! Eyes widened, he stared toward the owner of the prying fingers beneath his mask. Figures it would be Moira. As gently as he could, he removed her hands from his person and wagged a finger in her direction. She pouted, and mumbled something, but didn’t pursue it thank God. Already Lucy pushed him to his limits with playful banter; most often, he had to force it. But much like the girl, he was beginning to feel skittish and closed in. Suffocated.

“I’m going to get out of this getup and help Lucy with her dress.” Giving a nod, he made toward the dressing room that he shared with Lucy, calling out over his shoulder. “If you need anything, just hunt down the two gay guys!” It was like a signal, Hugh’s head turning toward him on cue. It was almost enough to make him crack a grin.

“Which ones?!” There’s so many! Oh God, at least Bennett hadn’t said it!

“The ones that tango!” Caleb couldn’t take it anymore, especially when he saw Ben moving in to apparently seduce Jane and Moira. The hallway was little better, ducking past the stage doors with little success until he managed to dive into the safety of the dressing room. Yes, muted silence! Big sigh of relief. But there was Lucy, fumbling with her dress still, hands shaking like leaves. “Are you… okay?” He cursed himself as soon as the words were out of his mouth. That was really stupid.

“Terrified.” God, he could understand that so well right now. His own fingers weren’t all that steady as he undid the laces of the macabre wedding gown and the corset beneath. Normally it would have been pitifully easy to place a few kisses along Lucy’s spine, seduce and caress… Sighing as she turned around and practically flung herself at him, Caleb wrapped his arms about the smaller girl, hugging her warmly to his chest. Chin resting on top her head, a few kisses along the brow, waiting for her trembling to cease. But when would his? “Okay. Let’s do this.”

She looked about as certain as he felt.

Everything was a blur of activity afterward. And apparently since they were ‘officially’ a couple now, no one really had much of a problem barging into the dressing room to bestow some sort of wisdom on them or similar nonsense. Though it was a comforting sort of realization that David would never be ‘getting a piece of that ass’ now. Hah! If Caleb had been less of a man, he would have gloated and lorded over the director with that tidbit of information. It seemed like the couple didn’t even bother with their usual routines this time. Get out of the blasted costumes, hang them up, and change into something that looked halfway normal… Mmm, comfy! Hair scrubbed if needed – which it was in his case – and faces washed. Ta-da! And while Lucy’s back was turned? Caleb did the same thing he did for every other production of Phantom they had been in together. He stole the prop. The mask and the rose went into his bag with a suppressed giggle, and they were ready.

“Okay, the groupies should be gone…” Caleb murmured with a snicker, allowing Penny to poke her head out. Cannon fodder! “God, I could use a cigarette right about now.” Eek, that wasn’t a good look from Lucy.

“Nicotine kills, but they’re your lungs.” She had a point, on both accounts.

Out the door, there were a handful of people milling about, not paying much attention at the moment. That was all to the good. But while the girls headed for the Jeep, he paused. Nicotine heaven! One woman was about to light up a cigarette, and he couldn’t help it at that point. “May I?” He was sure it was going to be a nasty comment coming from her lips, but she had to stare up… and up… just to reach his face. Damn, she was tiny! Wordlessly handing over the offending cigarette and lighter, he lit it and took a deep drag. Exhale! “Thanks, I needed that.” After one puff the nicotine stick was handed back, and he was rushing over to the Jeep to avoid confrontation from any front.

“God, I needed that reminder!” he exclaimed, hopping into the driver’s seat, rummaging across the console for the usual bottle of water. Swig, swish, spat it right out onto the pavement before closing the door. “That was disgusting!” Didn’t he have some breath mints around here somewhere? Half a roll of Certs had been consumed on the drive back to the house, a few cars tailing them along the way. Any other time he would have been paranoid, but he knew Ben’s car well enough and that Cadillac could have only belonged to his father. Or maybe it was Rob’s. Were they even stopping by?

Let the pandemonium begin!

“Luuuuuuuuucy, we’re home!” That was the third time he had heard the quip tonight, and if it was getting on his nerves, he could only imagine how she felt! But now he was ensconced in a close-knit group; one that consisted of his father, Rob, Ben, and Devon in a heated debate, though the latter stepped out when he was quashed. Local police do not equal military matters, and know little about it! Besides, it just wasn’t the same with an outsider.

“No, no, I’ve got one even better than that,” Caleb announced, eyeing Rob up and down. “Our esteemed colleague Agent Fowler here once had me sent to London.” The way Rob’s eyes narrowed could only mean one thing as he continued retelling the tale. Hah! “I was there for a year with this blonde bombshell as my partner. Shit hit the fan, and he thinks it’s a great idea to use me as a dupe.” Pause. “So there we are, in the middle of freaking nowhere, when They come banging on the door. We made it fun, they found us in bed together.” Caleb could only deliver a sage nod when Ben choked on his drink and his father… cracked a grin. Hah!

“I seem to remember that you were training a young woman after that. So, whatever happened to her?” Ouch, stinging barb.

“Very funny, jackass. You know very well you saddled me with that slip of a girl because her daddy wanted her to learn a few things!” And these people weren’t even drunk! They all likely had the thousand-yard stare at one time or another, but even when not inebriated, they seemed a bit off kilter. Courtesy of the government, all for a low low one time fee of your soul! “On that note, I’m going to refresh my drink.” Nyah!

Steering his way out of… what was this room, the parlor? Whatever it was, he still had to wade through a number of people that kept coming and going, apparently unable to decide if they enjoyed the festivities or not. Catching sight of Lucy, stuck between a sofa and Devon, he grimaced as she pushed the man away and ran off. Frowning, he decided to take it up with Devon first and Lucy later. After all, the idiot was still standing right there! Wandering past, he snatched up his brother’s arm, dragging him along for the ride until they were in a quiet hallway toward the back. “What the hell was all that about?”

“What, Lucy? I was just asking her a few questions.” The innocent tone wasn’t really working, and Caleb glared, grip getting just a bit tighter. “Wondering if the Old Man ever brought his cronies around.” What?! “You know, Santorini, Piazzo, schmucks like that.” He had to be joking, right? Pretty sure he was gaping; it took a few long moments to register in his mind. He really had said that!

“Are you an idiot?!” Caleb refused to scream or shout. A quick rattling of Devon would suffice, shaking the man hard until he thudded against the wall. “We do not talk about those things in this home, Devon. Do you understand me?” He had forgotten what it was like to deal with… Ugh. There was a stubborn note of defiance in the way the man tilted his jaw upward. He wasn’t going to give this up without a fight.

“Why not? Isn’t it my right to know, anyhow? The investigation is still ongoing, after all!” Oh hell. Their conversation paused as someone wandered past, which unnerved him slightly. People were walking through his home! No, keep the twitching to a minimum, deal with the problem at hand. Right! “It’s my duty to find these things out, Caleb.”

“Not by badgering my fiancée, it sure in the hell isn’t!” he hissed, dragging Devon further down the hall. Ah-ha. The basement! No one was down here, considering the door had been closed. Besides, he wouldn’t have to worry about his shouts now. “Lucy has been through a hell of a lot in the last year, Devon. I don’t want you making it any harder on her! The case is closed, damn it. Let it die.”

“That’s a load of bureaucratic bullshit if I ever heard it.” Uhm, what? Apparently the Holmes family had no love affairs involving the government, which was rather surprising to be honest. Then again, these people were strangers to him. He probably wouldn’t have given any of them a second look on the street. “All it’s doing is perpetuating the problem. Those families aren’t going to go anywhere!” Spoken like a true cynic. Caleb shook his head slowly, trying to get this all straight. “What? You think you have some bright idea to get this to go away?”

“Listen, Devon. I’m not going to pretend to know you. I haven’t seen any of you in years, and that’s a huge gap to bridge in a single night.” If ever. “But don’t you ever dare to assume anything about myself. I worked my ass off to get this far, and I’ll be damned if some sniveling twit of a cop can’t open his eyes and see it for himself!” They really weren’t getting off on the right foot here.

“Is that all you see me as?” Devon demanded, a slighter and smaller version of Caleb all around. “Some dumbass that is stuck in a vicious cycle? I help people, brother, unlike some men…” He did not just go there! “What have you ever done to help Lucy?” There was a mocking tone creeping into the man’s voice, one that he wasn’t fond of at all. Why’d there always have to be one asshole that ruined it all?

“I’ve taken bullets for that woman! I let myself be used as bait to draw those bastards out so they’d stop hunting her!” Caleb’s voice was rising impressively, in both pitch and volume. Apparently this was something he felt strongly about; you think? “All those months ago, after the first production had run through, I killed Sonny Piazzo and took her away from this God forsaken place, Devon! He tried to kill her, right out in the f’cking street! Don’t you ever presume that I have done nothing for Lucy, or anyone else, you presumptuous bastard. I’ve done more than you can ever hope to do during your career!” And worse…

“You… You were the one that did in Sonny?” Caleb could feel his eyes burn, remembering what that bastard had done to Lucy, and how he had hurt her. “No… He was burnt up in the fire that took out the Avellino home.”

“Just like Gino Maurizio and Luciana Avellino, right?” he retorted with a sneer, shaking his head pityingly. “Shit happened that night, and I took care of it. That’s all you need to know. And if I hear one bit of this in any department in this state, I swear I will hunt your ass down and show you exactly how much pain that Piazzo bastard went through until he died!” He couldn’t handle this. Not now.

Still shaking his head, Caleb retreated up the stairs, looking for sanctuary.

  • The Beat Goes OnLucy Avellino [& Penny], Wed Apr 13 17:44
    I am not going to throw up! Dozens of hands shoved playbills and pictures at her, begging for autographs and smiles. Flashes from the few members of the press present kept trying to blind her, making ... more
    • Anarchists Untie — Caleb Holmes, Wed Apr 13 23:40
      • Voicing WorriesCaleb Holmes, Thu Apr 14 04:50
        Caleb didn’t find sanctuary upstairs either. Well, there were a great deal of theater rats settling in to party the night out, and he could foresee a fleet of taxis in their near future. He allowed... more
        • Table for ... Twelve?Lucy Avellino, Sat Apr 16 15:46
          The taxi had collected Penny barely an hour after dawn, driver politely ignoring the sob fest between the two girls. One would think they were never going to see each other again, but the last week... more
          • Overdue DiscussionsCaleb Holmes, Sun Apr 17 00:46
            “Nope.” Nope?! Oh God, he was going to hyperventilate. “I’m deliriously joyful, Caleb. Happy isn’t lavish enough to describe how I feel about you.” That had to be one of the most equally romantic and ... more
            • Toasts and WedgesCaleb Holmes, Sun Apr 17 00:48
              It was only mildly worrying that Lucy had never returned home from her shopping trip with Moira. “I need to get that girl a cellphone…” Caleb muttered to himself, staring up toward the bedroom... more
              • With Strumpets BlaringLucy Avellino, Mon Apr 18 23:57
                “Okay, no one wants to hear any more about that, Jane!” Lucy waited until James had stood and embarrassed every one of his offspring with toasts before grinning at Jane across the table. “I most... more
                • Dethroned!Caleb Holmes, Tue Apr 19 02:58
                  He had been utterly, thoroughly humiliated. Jane just wouldn’t stop with the telling of stories he had thought long since dead. God, he couldn’t even begin to describe how unnerving it was to have a... more
                  • DefloweredLucy Avellino, Thu Apr 21 19:03
                    “What’s your name and what part are you auditioning for?” Aha, a repeat of Caleb’s fantastic performance. Well, not really. Lucy went from being a self-contained twenty-one year old to sixteen, all... more
                    • Oh really now?Caleb Holmes, Sun Apr 24 00:20
                      “What’s your name and what part are you auditioning for?” What was with David acting so formal? Pffbt! At least Ray wasn’t here to bungle things in his patented west coast fashion. One director was... more
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