|Scene Title||Caged in Shadow|
|Synopsis||Siobhan's captors dump her into her cell. She meets her cellmate, then gets up-close and personal with what life will bring here.|
|Location||Riddle House - Dungeons|
|Date||January 27, 1996|
|Watch For||Girl-Bonding and stubborn spirits|
|Logger||The Bad Wolf|
There's one other lone occupant in the cell when Siobhan has the first stirrings of wakefulness. A delicate looking woman who can't be much older then she is, but obviously malnourished; the shirt that serves as her clothing just hangs off of her. Her head's obviously been shaved, but hair has been growing back for a few weeks now. But most of all she just seems blank and placid. Like the body is there but the mind isn't. And she is huddled in the corner curled up in a ball only barely watching her new cellmate. Suspicious.
Imagine the worst hangover in existence. Then multiply it by ten and add getting hit by a bus. That's about what it feels like for Siobhan in the aftermath of even a short Cruciatus curse. After several hours of blessed unconsciousness, she starts to stir, lifting and turning her head towards the light and squinting at her new surroundings. Her face is a mess of dried and drying blood, stemming from her nose, her cracked lips and her right cheekbone where (amidst the bruising and blood) there might just be the edge of bone sticking out. In this state, it takes her a while to even get her bearings, forget notice anything important. Slowly, tortuously, she hauls her body up to sit in a sprawled fashion against the wall, breathless from even that effort. It's then that she notices her cellmate. There's a long moment of suspicious silence. Siobhan waits to see actual breathing before even trying to speak - she's unfortunately very aware of Shadow's … proclivities. Her voice comes out first as a croak and she coughs for a moment before trying again. "Int'restin' decor ya got here." Her mouth is swollen and her voice is hoarse from screaming, but it's mostly intelligible.
There's breathing! There is another long stretch of silence after Siobhan speaks, though Maura doesn't move from her spot. Not even an inch. "Goes with the hospitality." she enunciates, slowly. As if it's a labor for her to speak, and the voice she uses is hoarse from a cobination of disuse and, uh, vigorous use. "You being here means I finally get to die." she whispers, sounding relieved. Almost.
Siobhan laughs at that. Well, okay, laugh is a generous term. She huffs out a wheezing breath of amusement, more accurately. "B'lieve me, this 's his h'neymoon suite. You don't wanna see 'is themed rooms." Because images of that horror will never stop haunting the young snake, not until her dying day. She coughs again and tilts her head back a bit, the new angle making it less painful on her face to talk. "I wouldn't count on that, either," she gasps out. "He's juggled over thirty people before. I don't think two will be a problem." Those thirty were Muggles, but hey. "What's your name?" You know, because even belated manners are still manners.
Maura huffs a bit of amusement there, slowly unfurling herself to try and well… sort of crawl forward a little so they can hear each other better - and anyone guarding the rooms outside cannot. She's so painfully slow at it, but determined. "Ha'nt seen his, but there's a woman.. ", she just shudders, not saying anything more about it. That oughta be enough. "I was… I was hoping." is admitted, when she's told not to count on death as her escape. Can anyone blame her for the tears stringing her eyes now. "Maura, I think. I've b-been here a long time." Raising her eyes again, she asks, with manners. "Yours?"
Siobhan watches that crawl, so slow but so determined. She doesn't have the strength to haul herself up, forget help, but the sheer stubbornness of the movement makes her smile. It looks like a grimace, but it's totally a smile. "If there's a woman working with Shadow, that'd be Bellatrix." See? It helps to have been watching this place for months before being thrown in. Narcissa is in nearly as deep as her husband, but 'Cousin Cissa' wouldn't stoop to her sister's level. There's something deep in Siobhan that believes that. Strongly. "I'm Siobhan, nice to meet you Maura." Slowly, so slowly, the fog around her mind is lifting. The pain, the absolute throbbing agony in her face, actually helps with that. "Don't stop hoping yet." She lowers her voice as the other girl draws near. "Shadow finally fucked up when he picked me to grab." It's the one bright spot in this whole thing, that she knows their side has screwed the pooch and bad.
"That is her name? I hope I remember it if I am ever free." Maura decides, her shoulders trembling this time with anger and not effort. "Better met in other circustances." she rasps out, but in a way that suggests she has a somewhat dry sense of humor behind it. "But nice to be near someone who is… nice." She doesn't really -want- to hope, however, so she sort of bypasses that comment as if she never heard it. "I hope they get you out before too long, then" is offered, fear creeping in again slowly. "Before he makes you like I am now."
Siobhan understands the raw need to not hope. The reality of the situation is that if Severus didn't get her Patronus before Shadow cleaned up the area - or if the thing didn't manage to make it at all - there was almost no hope of an outside rescue. She hates it, but deep down inside she has to admit that there's not much hope even if it did go through. She'd recognize Riddle House anywhere. But there's something fragile and wonderful about the sheer determination and cheek that her cellmate has. It brings out Siobhan's protective side in full force, so she doesn't admit to the hopelessness. Not yet. "I dunno, you've survived him this long. I'd say that makes you one tough fucker." Pain is eating away at Sio's filters for 'professional' speech something awful. "And I highly doubt His Royal Craziness had any hand in making you that."
And Maura just cannot help but like Siobhan's grit, and attitude. It fuels the little bit of spunk that's kept her going all this time. It can't hurt to open up a little, right? They are going to see the worst of each other, especially if there is no rescue. So for the first time in nearly a year a bit of a smile tugs at her mouth. "He has taken memory, and I cannot walk right. Cannot speak right. But…" shaky hand taps her temple. "He tries to take this I think, and cannot. So I use it to make him mad. Then he gives me to Bel…her."
Siobhan grins right back at that. This time it almost looks like one. "Never let him take that," she agrees, but grimaces. "Bella's a piece of work, that's for sure." And doesn't that just confuse the living hell out of Siobhan. "There's one of two things going on, here," she finally concludes, and thinking out loud seems to help. "Either Lord Voldemort has given up on all pretense of upholding the pureblood lines and has given in to petty torture of even those he built his power on… " Which she does not find all that likely. "In which case, I'll be able to handle Mrs LeStrange." She pauses to think. "Or his first lieutenant has not been entirely honest with him, because there's not a one of the Dark Lord's most powerful supporters that my family hasn't known for generations. Inter-married with, even." This seems more in-character for all parties involved. "If that's the case, he'll keep me away from Bellatrix at all costs, because she may enjoy the chance Shadow offers to indulge her sadistic side, but her loyalty - whatever that's worth - is unquestionably Tom's." Uh, er. "Lord Voldemort's." Ahem. "If she gets too bad," she starts, but has to pause to cough, the sound raw and painful. "If she gets unbearable, let your eyes roll back in your head and start screaming at the top of your lungs about the shame brought on your own house by your own sister's blood behaving like a filthy mudblood whore." One hand is lifted and waved weakly in a vague fashion. "Be creative with it. So long as you're loud and vicious enough, she'll think her Aunt Walburga's gone and possessed your body - at least long enough to buy you a break."
Maura's already large eyes just go wide at everything Siobhan has to say. "He… Shadow… an ex-per-i-ment." she sounds out, having to be even more careful with the longer words. "He used a shot. Muggle shot." she mimes a needle with her hand. "Magic in it. That made me this way. The pain, he just seems to enjoy." she whispers, shoulders twitching sharply there, until she forces a grin. "It would be the first bit of pl.. fun I have had in here, to make that b-bitch freak out." She obviously intends to try this trick out next time Bellatrix decides to her her as a whipping post. "If you get out… can you." she pauses, obviously concentrating. "Try to find out who I was?"
The miming of the Muggle injection makes Siobhan go incredibly pale under all the blood and dirt. She swallows hard and squeezes her eyes shut, mentally cursing just about every god and deity she can remember that it had to be that kind of an experiment. Then something strikes her. "Muggle. You're a witch, then? Good." She starts to shake her head, but freezes when the motion sends a shooting pain through her face. "If I get out, you're coming with me." Like she'd ever leave anyone here to suffer through Shadow. With slow, jerky, painful motions, Siobhan reaches inside the collar of her tattered coat. What she pulls out is a thin silver chain with a pendant of a twisting serpent hanging on it. "This can take us to safety if we're ever outside the wards." She lets the snake swing between them a moment longer, looking at it with something very like agony and longing on her face. She seems to come back to herself and stuffs it almost angrily back inside her coat, blinking hard and fast. "What, um." She clears her throat. "What 'way' did he make you?"
Maura nods slowly, pointing at herself. "Hogwarts. Healing and protection." she explains, her face falling inward at the irony of that. "I know he took me on my way to intern at a hospital." is reasoned out loud, her voice slowing further as it hurts just to speak and she does not want anyone knowing how much she has figured out. "I re-mem-ber places and /things/. But no faces. No -people-." It agonizes her to be like that, her eyes watering up again as she pulls her knees up and rests her forehead against them a moment to compose herself, rocking back and forth - which would also show Siobhan the dried blood and cut fabric from Bellatrix last play session. "Leigh Syndrome." she says simply. "My nervous system de… det… goes bad. Lost balance, lost co-ord-i-nat-ion. Hard to speak. Will get worse if no way to shield me from it."
Siobhan grits her teeth against the pain and turns her head to get a better look at Maura. She doesn't look much older and that means Siobhan should be able to place her, right? Squinting, she wracks her memory, but keeps coming up on self-imposed roadblocks. Too many of those memories lead to the one person she absolutely cannot let herself think about here. Nevermind, there's more pressing things - like this Leigh Syndrome. Siobhan's already thinking, already planning forward. "How fast?" She pauses, remembering this isn't one of her snakes and that she'll likely have to spell things out a bit more than she's used to doing. "How quickly will your condition deteriorate?"
Maura is also dirty, skinny (and not just thin), and has a lot less hair… so she'd be harder to place anyway! She notices Siobhan's scrutiny, but doesn't think much of it really, more figuring the other woman is trying to decide just how far gone she is. "Hard to know." she admits. "He did a bad job. He made me get the disease. But, it has stopped and started instead of progressing as it should." And so, she shrugs. "Just keep hoping it stops again."
That makes Siobhan snort, amused. "For such a psychopathic genius, he sure does screw up a lot." It makes her feel better. It gives her hope. It also makes her think. "When it stops next? Tell me." Because Siobhan's fairly confident of her ability to grit her teeth and push through some pain to get out, but if Maura's coordination is bad, she knows she won't have the strength to haul them both out. She opens her mouth to add to that, but the sound of a slightly rusted bolt scraping against the door to the outside makes her freeze.
The bright light from the hallway makes her eyes burn and as the door swings inward, she has to squint. It is perhaps lucky then, that the figure - short and fat and hunched as it is - is quite easily recognizable. It's such a delicious irony that Siobhan laughs. Even though it hurts and the sound is raw and wheezing and decidedly unpleasant. Proooobably not helping the image of her sanity any. "Why hullo Wormtail." The broken and bloody nature of her face makes that feral grin look almost … evil. If she has to be stuck here, she's going to take every chance she can to enjoy herself. "Padfoot's been looking for you, dear. I'd almost given in and gotten him a new chew-toy." Sugar-sweet, her venom. Why not reinforce the image that she's nothing more than a filthy mudblood-supporter? It might be the only thing to keep her away from Tom.
It does its job. The fat, balding man goes even more pasty, stuttering out a few helpless squeaks before remembering that he is the one with the wand here and shooting ropes out of the end to bind Siobhan's hands and feet. Nevertheless, she's laughing brokenly as he levitates her bound body and starts to navigate it down the hallway to a room Maura knows well. In fact, she laughs the whole trip down. She laughs as she's affixed to an operation table that looks like something out of the Inquisition. She laughs harder when Shadow enters the room and gives the rat-man a solid kick in the side to send him on his way. She laughs until she starts screaming.
At first Maura nods, but as the bolt slides she scuttles haphazardly back into her corner. she's Pavlov's dog and that door opening is the signal. Even knowing it won't help, she still reacts the same way. Fear. Hide. Escape in the mind as long as possible. Who knows what she thinks about. Somewhere in there she registers every word Siobhan utters though, filing it away for future use, if it will help. But when it's Siobhan that's taken she screams her protest. A pathetic scream, but one nonetheless. "NO. TAKE ME!!!" she pleads with her captors, falling into broken sobs when she hears the torment begin down that familiar hallway.
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