abetterlie: (Default)
If you had asked me last week what I wanted most right now it would have been for this trip to bizarro world to be over, both for Harry and me. That the cops would somehow realize they made a mistake, or something.

(Okay, so I wanted to break some people's bones as well, but not as much.)

Now half of that has come true. And I haven't felt less like celebrating. Guess that makes me the most ungrateful whiner ever, but here are the facts:

1.) Last week I broke out of jail. There were reasons. Det. Yoon showed me some photos of Harry and what they did to him in prison. After I dealt with them, I came back. I sort of hoped that would prove I was - welll, that I hadn't done what they thought I had anyway. Didn't exactly work. I got back into solitary again.

2.) Today, they told me a few days ago some guy named Vernon Pritchard who is already serving time for drug possession, robbery and homicide confessed to having killed Lawrence, Colleen and Mere Riley. My family. They probably didn't believe him at first, but he sticks to his story. So today, they told me I was free to go but should stay in L.A. for a few more days, "for formalities".

3.) The hell?

Because I know how they died. I mean, I found their bodies. Nobody shot them or knifed them or - well, okay, that's not what this guy Pritchard says he did. He worked in a hospital at the time, so he had access to narcotics and said he just wanted to render them subconscious while robbing the house and misjudged the dose, or something like that. No way. Not the way I found them. Plus I have a pretty good idea what killed them, and it wasn't Pritchard.

Except why would he say he did? And now I'm wondering about two possibilities. One is that I was completely wrong back then about the cause, that I just freaked out because I found them all dead. I was completely wrong about why my first father died as well. And that this Vernon Pritchard did kill them. Actually, I want to believe that. And that makes me a bit sick, because the reason I want to believe it is that it would mean I didn't cause it with my request about the memories, that it wasn't my fault. I'm so good at believing lies. Lies that make everything easier. I want to.

The other possibility is that Pritchard says it because it gets me off the hook. He doesn't know me, so there's no reason why he should feel all self-sacrificial except if someone is making him to. The way they tried to make me confess. Or maybe some other way. And there is a sort of limited circle of people who'd do that. Either way, he's now in for life with no chance of getting released, and is damm lucky if they don't retry him with the death penalty in mind. For something he didn't do.

My parents and my sister - the dead ones - they lived. They existed. I'm sure they were pretty happy and would have been for the rest of their lives if I hadn't completely screwed up and Angel hadn't needed a perfect family to place me in. Then they got their brains messed with, and then I screwed up some more. And this guy Vernon Pritchard, he lives. He exists. Okay, so he was in jail before for something he did do, but that doesn't mean he should be the next one to pay the price for me.

But if he did it. If by some crazy chance he did it.

Last week I just wanted this to be over. It was so good to be out of jail again, even for a few hours, and I wanted the open sky back and to fight again, don't care whom my life back. Except I forgot my life comes complete with lies and at other people's expense, and anyway, it's just half my life until Harry can go where he wants to as well and if someone did fix this, why didn't you do it for him instead?

Guess that proves you've got to be careful what you wish for. Especially if you're a hypocrite who still hasn't figured out how to run his life without causing damage left, right and center.

I need to find out more about Vernon Pritchard.
abetterlie: (Default)
After this

"Anger and hate," Justine said to him once. "Severely underrated. Keeps you going. Well, not you."

But then, she hadn't known him when hate kept him going, save for those two days between the death of one father and the imprisonment of another. Then Wesley had captured her and locked her up. In a closet. He's thinking of Justine a lot these days, and how she hated closed rooms afterwards, how they drove with open windows whenever they could. He also thinks of Angel under the sea, and the question of who deserves what.

Until Darla comes, and suddenly the fact his cell is neither a closet nor a coffin under the sea and that he does have blood on his hands doesn't provide him with the same resignation any more. He wants to breathe air again, any air, even some of the more toxic fumes from volcanos back in Quortoth would do, he wants his life back, and no matter whether Harry is really okay back in Gotham or not, he wants to see that for himself.

He also wants to hurt someone for this entire situation. And there are no demons around.

(Save for himself.)

Ironically, his general passivity so far, after the first day and assorted knocked out inmates, and the fact solitary didn't cause him to confess have persuaded the administration to a change of tactics. He's put in a cell with another murder suspect awaiting trial. As opposed to many a prison movie, the man in question is neither an oversized gorilla interested in rape nor an innocent who somehow ended up in detention. He's mostly complaining about how his lawyer screwed things up and didn't get him bailed out, and otherwise looking forward to visits from his wife. The person he killed was his son's math teacher.

"She was gonna let him fail," he explains. "Bitch." Hastily, he adds: "But of course I didn't do it."

The next day, Connor is offered a more or less blatant deal. Instead of having to watch the photos of his burned family yet again, he gets to watch photos of Harry Osborn, severely beaten up.

"Now Detective Fitzgerald, she figures the two of you were in it together, for a joyride," the policeman pushing the photos to him says. "But me, I can see another scenario. Maybe the Osborn boy just had bad luck and bad timing. But not you. Look, son, I know a killer when I see one. Bet no one would get the idea of putting your pal Harry into general population again if you confessed to all the murders. I'm just sayin'."

It takes all the will power he has not to move and react until the policeman shrugs and is about to signal the end of their conversation to the guards. Then he takes a page from Faith's book. He has crossed dimensions. He can do this. The main thing is not to look back.

There are glass splinters in his hair and there might be a bullet somewhere in his shoulder, at least that would explain the blood and the stinging pain there, but half an hour later he's on the road. Another hour later, he's confronted with his first demon. Only the demon turns out to be a costume, and not qualified for painsharing. Connor is hiding in one of the many underground tunnels beneath Los Angeles, far too familiar from the past, when it hits him.

He had forgotten. It's almost Halloween.
abetterlie: (Default)
Harry -

no idea whether this will get through, and it will be read first anyway, and maybe the reply will be a fake, but: you'll get out of this. Promise. I don't care how.

Connor


Dear Kara,

I never got to answer your last, and you probably think this is me acting out or whatever. I just wanted to say that there are some photos from Vegas you could sell on Ebay if you still need cash. They're uploaded at my photobucket account, password Manilow.

Connor


Dad Angel -

I had a job in Savannah, at a occult shop. Could you talk to the owner and explain? This is important. Also, maybe she'll tell you what she promised to tell me. I'm looking for that teenager we met at the Hyperion a year ago because she might know about what happened to Cordelia. If it turns out I can't, you have to.

Connor
abetterlie: (Default)
following this and this


Click.

The sound his fingers make as he stretches them is the only one. They put him in general population at first, but now there is something about solitary and protection. Meaning they want to protect the other prisoners from him. They don't know he's been careful, but rendering people unconscious is the best thing you can do in limited space when they keep going at you and you can't permit yourself to seriously hurt or kill them.

Harry doesn't have superpowers. He's gotten good at self defense by now, but that's not the same thing, and he hates closed spaces. Something to think about when Connor doesn't think about the photos, or the other dead, the ones the police know nothing about.

Click.

He should have remained with them, that day. Made sure their ashes were dispersed in the wind, as he and Justine had done when they burned Father. And it's not like he hasn't seen dead bodies before, or burned bodies, but one of the photos showed Mere's left little finger, miraculously intact, barely blackened. Just the little finger, with a friendship ring from one of her friends at high school, and he tries to remember the name of her friend. That keeps him occupied for an hour, at least, because he always returns to "Harmony", and he knows that's not true. Harmony was Kara's friend.

Click.

"Don't you have anything to say?" the Sergeant had asked, Kathleen Fitzgerald, and her partner had added: "I wouldn't count on your boyfriend to bail you out if I were you. He's probably already cutting a deal with the NYPD and moving on to the next best thing. Hey, come to think of it, didn't he already? Wasn't there something in the papers, Kath?"

But the woman had ignored that lead and had leaned forward, across the seat on the plane where they had Connor handcuffed. He didn't mention the cuffs were redundant. "You know you do," she had said intently. "I think you know exactly what you've done, and that you want to confess. Don't you?"

The thing was, she wasn't completely wrong. He's been thinking about it intermittendly, ever since meeting Faith again. When he had gotten drunk at Peter's, he had almost spilled it out. That singularly simple idea: human justice. No, he hadn't murdered Mom and Dad and Mere, not the way the police thought, or Mario, but he was responsible for their deaths nonetheless. He had killed a man more recently, the one who had held Emily captive. and hadn't even been sorry. And he had dragged a girl to her death, kidnapped her and delivered her to be slaughtered, with her blood allowing his daughter to be born.

You still love me?

Yes.

That was the death nobody would ever hold him accountable for, because even Angel, who knew about atonment and being a killer better than anyone, thought it was a good thing that she was dead: Jasmine.

Click.

Solitary, and maybe it's not even night any more. If he called out and said he didn't want to wait for a lawyer, he wanted to confess now, someone would get in immediately. He wouldn't mention human sacrifices or mind wipes or spells or fallen powers, he'd just say what they wanted to hear. Well, almost. He'd say he killed his family because he was a psychopath and hadn't told anyone so far. While he was at it, he could throw in something about killing Mario as well, also due to being a psychopath. It would be easy. And whether he'd get a lifetime in jail or a death sentence, it would be just, wouldn't it?

Now the question is, what do you deserve? Don't get up. Daddy is not finished talking.

Except that there is no way they wouldn't use such a confession to go after Harry as well. He's not naive enough anymore to believe otherwise. Someone famous convicted is always more important than some unknown convicted. They'd insist Harry had known. So he can't confess.

Click.

Today. He found them dead today. If it is still today, and not tomorrow. He's not tired, but then again, that doesn't tell him anything about whether it's night or day or whether or not he should sleep. Angel must have felt like that under the sea.

Now the question is, what do you deserve?

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abetterlie

July 2010

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