39 - Confliction

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On my way back to the lab, I run into Brink, suspicion in his expression. "How did it go?" he asks telepathically as we tread down the hall.

Since I didn't get a single ounce of worthy information from Travis, I don't know what exactly to tell him. "Today I didn't do much other than examine his facial features, like you suggested. I will get the information Brink. Give me a few days and he will crack. I am sure of it," I say back, out loud.

Discussing business with him brings out an odd formality between Brink and I. It draws a line between us, builds up a barrier. I feel like nothing other than a colleague to him, and I'm not sure if I enjoy the distance.

"You are feeling rather confident then?"

I nod as we approach the lab doors. I then begin the security measures. He cuts my time in half by typing the code in for me as I scan my palm. I give him a half-smile to thank him, but he pretends it didn't happen.

"Well, regardless of your lack of discoveries today, record what went on just to be thorough. Something little may come in handy for later conversations," he advises. I go to step into the lab, but he touches my shoulder so I stop. I try to hide the elation building up within me at his touch. "Let me remind you that you can call me or any of the others for aid at any time. Do not hesitate." He taps his head. "We are always here."

I grin and turn into the room before disappointment has the chance to strike me. A couple Programmables are busy preparing health supplements on my left, so I opt to work on the opposite side of them for less distraction, though I don't have much to document. I start by typing in some of Travis McCormack's key facial features when he spoke the truth.

As I describe his face in the computer, an image formulates on the screen. In my head, I picture him slumped in that room, dangling by the cuffs on his wrists. He must be passionate about what he's defending since he's been willing to suffer through our torture for this long.

It takes approximately five minutes to complete the documentation and then I'm out. I ponder over what to do next. Should I review interrogation strategies in the Training Center? I could ask Stella to join along with me to get some input from her. Maybe all I really want to do is have someone to talk to.

Really talk to.

I have yet to share my painful experience with anyone like I wanted to days ago after it occurred. The sense of insecurity I have toward the other Five keeps me quite that much longer.

Maybe I'll never receive an explanation behind the pain I'd endured. Maybe it was nothing.

--

I've reached day three of the interrogation and I now approach the Holding Room with failing self-assurance. I can't get squat out of Travis McCormack, and yet I'm still desperate to prove myself to Brink and the others, so giving up is not an option--yet. Travis is my ticket to acceptance and respect but he just won't snap. Why won't he break open for me?

As I commence typing in the code to enter, I hear multiple voices behind the door, so I pause to listen in--two males. Travis is obviously one; he's shouting at the other. Brink?

The thick door muffles my hearing ability so I press my ear against it in hopes of successfully eavesdropping. I hadn't expected Brink to be here because he must know I'm about to arrive--he's as equally aware of my schedule as I am his. I wince to concentrate, but the voices stop, so I stand upright, assuming Brink is departing. Sure enough, he clangs the door open, but isn't looking my way at first; he's still turned toward Travis.

"I can't wait to end you," he snarls, and turns to face me. He flinches at my closeness, but hurries to compose himself with a fake smile. "Hello love," Brink says and leans in to kiss me. It surprises me so much that I don't have the time to reject or pull away--not that I want to. I can't think of the last time he kissed me.

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