Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

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Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by Ranger52899 on Mon Nov 20, 2017 6:41 am

We liked this version but went with Dale's POV in the end.  



He moved like a cat; there was nothing the man didn’t do well. Like Riley, he was wearing nothing but t shirt and shorts, barefoot up on the tiles, and once clear of the window he paused for a moment on the sharp slope, looking up at the sky.

He’s on the roof. It got bad enough that he’s on the roof.

Oh baby, I should never have left you alone tonight!  

Paul stepped very softly down the steps into the yard where he could see him better, and where he had some chance of breaking a fall.

“Hey sugarpie.” He called lightly, and made himself lean against the porch post and sip tea, body and voice relaxed and not frantic. Not scary, because whatever he said had to make Dale feel safe, not threatened; it needed to ease him from panic far enough to think. Even though staying outwardly chilled was possibly one of the hardest things he’d ever done. “Want to check the guttering while you’re up there? I thought it was a little slow when it rained the other day.”

Dale looked down at him. His face was in shadow, it was hard to see his expression but Paul could see the freeze in his jaw, in his shoulders, in his hands.

That’s how it happens, isn’t it? You look fine and you feel fine and you shut it all away… so it stalks you and it mugs you the minute you let your guard down, and you don’t even see it coming. But you usually want to run, not - Oh sweetheart what the hell are you trying to do?

Jake opened the front door very softly and slipped out, large, moving quietly but very fast, and somehow he knew, his eyes were on the roof and Dale from the second he had the door open. He had the very good sense not to shout or do anything alarming, the man loved Tom and he got this stuff like they did, but before Paul had time to realise what he intended he grasped the porch rail and in ridiculously few swift, strong pulls he was there up on the porch roof and then up on the higher slope of the roof within grasping reach of Dale, his voice casual but with the wall of friendly confidence that Jake excelled at that said everything was about to happen exactly his way.

“Dale, sit down and sit still.”

Dale did it. To his immense relief, Paul saw him move promptly to do as Jake told him. Jake took a seat beside him, relaxed on the tiles.

“That’s great. Nice view up here. How’s your evening going?”

Dale didn’t answer. In the window but one along from the bathroom, Tom was visible, watching with a sharp focus that reminded Paul that he was used to working with Jake at height and on far less stable surfaces than this. Flynn arrived beside Paul at speed, he must have sprinted across the yard, and Paul saw him forcibly control the shock in his face.

“Ok darling,” Paul said, taking a long breath and getting it together. “Let’s not be boring about this. Why don’t you come up with the most fantastic lie you can think of about why being up there is a really good idea? The wilder the better. I’ll start. This is a rogue bat surveillance operation, and you’re collecting pictures for the CIA.”

Sometimes that annoyed Dale. Sometimes it made him crack and laugh. Either way it tended to distract him out of whatever thoughts he was stuck in. Dale looked from him to Jake, then to Tom, and his face was still in shadow, Paul couldn’t see his eyes or his expression, but he looked frozen in place. Then he said in a very tentative version of his usual tone, his regular, conversational tone, “…I’m terribly sorry about this, I seem to be….?” 

“Channelling Tom.” Jake said cheerfully when he trailed off, shooting an affectionate look at Tom in the window. “He’s been dying to do this all evening.”

“Shut up.” Tom ordered. “Dale, you seem to be what?”

Dale looked from Tom back to Jake, and then Paul saw his head abruptly tip back to look at the stars and heard his sharp sigh, something between exasperation, embarrassment and amusement. “Oh no. Oh for God’s sake, this is ridiculous. I’m so sorry-”

“Whoa, sit. Now.” Jake said very firmly as he started to shift as though planning to get down, and suddenly his hand was equally firmly around Dale’s arm, holding him right where he was. “We’re sitting. We’re good here. You want to run me through the Pledge of Allegiance?”

“What?” Dale sounded surprised. Jake gave him a sociable smile.

“You know the one. ‘I pledge allegiance to the flag…’?”

“Because there’s nothing like a roof in darkness for bringing on a wave of national devotion?” Dale said quizzically.

Jake shrugged. “Always works on me, I’m getting more patriotic by the second. Let’s go, let me hear it.”

Dale sighed, but Paul heard his quiet voice begin with some irony, “I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America and the Republic for which it stands,”

His voice was even and his breathing was normal, the words flowed easily in sequence and he was following instructions. However he might be feeling in this moment, it was clear he had physical and mental control of himself.

“Ok,” Jake said when he’d finished, “I feel a whole lot better now, thanks. So you’re going to move when I tell you, where I tell you. Got it?”

“Yes sir.”

Jake took a firm grasp on Dale’s arm, stabilising him. “Ok. Shift over here to me, this way.”

Dale moved where Jake directed him. Jake kept hold of him the entire time, guiding him down on the porch roof, and to the edge, holding him there.

“Sit down, let your legs hang over. Flynn, got him?”

“Yes.” Flynn held his arms up, coming to stand directly below Dale. “Dale?”

Paul’s stomach tightened and he nearly opened his mouth to stop Flynn, fast. If all this was happening because Dale was in a highly triggered state like he’d been a few weeks back on the night he flung his journal into the fire, then open offered arms from someone he loved – he’d be likely to do anything at all but go to them. Probably the most dangerous alternative he could think of. But before he could speak, Dale moved without hesitation, sliding over the edge of the roof and dropping straight down into Flynn’s arms. Jake didn’t let go until he was within Flynn’s reach, and Flynn caught him, hugging him very tightly. Dale put his arms around Flynn’s neck and hugged him back, from what Paul could see pretty tightly too. Flynn looked up over his head to Jake.

“I’ve got him. Are you ok?”

“I’m great. If you three have it covered I’m going back to bed.” Jake got up, stretching where he stood on the porch roof.

“We’re fine.” Flynn said shortly. “Thanks Jake.”

“No problem.” Jake climbed straight up the roof back up to the window where Tom was watching. Tom moved back to let him in.

“Show off. You’re setting a lousy example you realise?”

O, speak again, bright angel, for thou art
As glorious to this night, being o'er my head,
As is a winged messenger of heaven
….” Jake sat on the windowsill and leaned over to kiss him. “Get your weight off those legs, Juliet.”

He disappeared through the window and out of sight. Paul breathed out, grabbed Dale and for a moment he, Flynn and Dale were tightly pressed together in the yard. Dale was shaking a little. Paul caught his head and made Dale look at him. He knew the second he saw Dale’s face, he’d learned how to spot the tells. His eyes – his pupils were normal sized, they met his honestly and very apologetically, and Dale’s face was alive with concern, not shut down. Not frozen. Flynn had a palm over his shoulder blades, the discreet way he often felt for Dale’s heart when he was in a state about something, but Paul could already see it. He wasn’t triggered. He wasn’t in a state of panic. He looked contrite and very, very embarrassed and that was all.

“I’m so sorry,” he said sincerely and very apologetically and for a moment to Paul he sounded like a small boy caught beside a broken window with a catapult in his hand, “I did not mean that to happen, it really, really was not another insane attempt to run anywhere, I’m fine.”

“What were you thinking?” Paul ran a hand through his hair, “What on earth were you doing? It’s ok, no one’s angry, no one’s upset, just tell me.”

“I have no idea.” Dale said very frankly. He was doing nothing to move out of either of their arms and that said a whole lot to Paul too. “I was in the bathroom, I wasn’t thinking about anything in particular, I was mostly listening to Ri-”

“Was that getting to you?” Flynn interrupted him quietly. Dale shook his head.

“No. Honestly, it wasn’t. I knew he was worried about Hope, I was glad he was showing you. Then suddenly my legs were aching, I was several inches taller and I really wanted to smash the mirror, and I felt like I wanted to get somewhere… quiet, as if everything was deafening.” He hesitated for a moment and Paul saw him weigh up what he wanted to say as if he wasn’t sure he should say it, then he said softly, “…I think it was probably Tom. Like Gerry’s pain that night kept waking me up.”

Flynn nodded slowly. “Yes, I remember.”

“Then Paul called up to me, and I realised was on the roof. I have no idea how.”

“Do your legs hurt now?”

“No. Up on the roof once I knew it wasn’t me, I recognised what was happening. I could feel it, but at a distance. Removed.” Dale looked both frustrated and hugely discomfited. “Which is someone else and not me. I am sure of it. Like feeling ‘taller’. Not my sensations, not my feelings, this is what happens with a what…occasionally with someone else in the house if they’re feeling something strongly and I’m open.”

“What about what Jasper taught you about shielding and grounding?” Flynn said, still very quietly. Dale gave him a chagrined look.

“I haven’t thought about it today. I usually do it first thing in the morning, or try to, but we had a sudden start to today and I didn’t think about it. I should be grounded, I’ve spent plenty of the day on grass and riding, but probably not shielded.”

“Take a seat and do it.” Flynn pointed him towards the porch steps and sat down beside him. “Take your time.” 

Leaving the two of them sitting on the steps together, Paul slipped across the yard and opened the stable door, just far enough to see Jasper sitting with his back against the bales of hay Riley was laying on, curled up under a stable blanket. They’d been talking quietly over the foal and the drowsing mare on the straw, but they broke off and looked up. Paul pulled it together enough to smile at Riley, keeping his voice even because scaring the hell out of Riley was the last thing any of them needed.

“Could you two use some hot chocolate if you’re going to be out here all night? I’ll go make it. Jas, can I borrow you a minute?”

Jasper rolled to his feet and came to the door.

“Cookies.” Riley called after him. “Bring the tin.”

Honey, if it’s going to keep you calm and together tonight while we get through this you can eat the lot.

Paul led the way out into the yard, closing the door to the stable to keep the warmth in and crisis out. Jasper saw Dale on the steps the minute he left the stable. He crossed the yard unhurriedly, Paul saw him look down into Flynn’s face, something passing between them, then he crouched in front of Dale, resting both hands on Dale’s knees.

“Ok?”

“Trying to shield.” Dale had his hands steepled in front of his face and lowered them, looking increasingly frustrated. “And making a fool of myself.”

“Stop.” Jasper took his hands. “Do it with me. You use the breastplate prayer, say it out loud.”

“The entire thing goes on for hours and it’s in several languages with several varying translations,” Dale began. Paul cut him off, quite sharply.

“No, don’t you dare start that, it’s us and you know none of us think you’re nuts. Do the relevant bit you want however you want before I go and get a hairbrush.”

Dale’s mouth twisted in the sardonic way that meant he was somewhere between pointing out the Geneva convention and laughing, but he sighed and ducked his head, closing his eyes to concentrate. He was still holding onto Jasper’s hands. Paul heard him reciting quietly,

Christ before me, Christ behind me,

Christ above me, Christ below me

Christ to the left of me, Christ to the right of me…”

There was something murmured at the end that was too quiet to catch.

“Colour.” Jasper said quietly to him when he finished.

“… Green.” Dale said heavily after a moment.

“Good. Now think of white light filling and surrounding that shield. White light overlaying the green. Have it blast out any energies that are not yours. Nothing coming in tonight.”

Dale made a faint sound of exasperation. “I can’t concentrate enough.”

“You don’t need to. Just say it to yourself and that’s enough.”

“Tom is with Jake,” Flynn said to Dale. “Jake has him, there is no reason for you to hold onto that connection or worry about him tonight, so let it go.”

Dale gave another sharp, frustrated release of breath and steepled his hands again in front of his face. Jasper waited a moment, hands resting on Dale’s knees, then tapped firmly.

“Good. Leave it now, it’s done.”

“It doesn’t feel done.”

“You don’t trust that you got it right.” Jasper got up, holding out a hand to pull him to his feet. “I do. Go put the kettle on, tea for five. We could use it.”

“You have two minutes. Leave the door open and do not leave the kitchen under any circumstances.” Flynn added shortly.

“Yes sir.”

It took everything Paul had to stand still and let him walk out of sight. But Jasper was right. He often sent Dale to do very ordinary chores after something involving energy, it was something he taught Dale to do. Paul wondered how often Jasper did that himself, rooting himself in their home and physically caring for it.

“He was on the roof.” Flynn said quietly to Jasper. “Jake said Tom was longing to, it sounds like he was wanting an escape tonight and Dale picked up on it. He found himself on the roof.”

“With us freaking out slightly.” Paul leaned against the porch rail and breathed out, near to laughing. “That was one I did not see coming.”

“We’ve been braced and waiting for him to blow because of Rupert Gordon.” Jasper said mildly.

“That’s generous. I’ve been braced, you’ve been far more sensible.” Paul retorted. Jasper shook his head.

“Jar of marmalade. He told us how he feels. I’m going to go have a word with him about shielding.”

“I’m coming with you.” Flynn said bluntly.
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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by abouttime2stop on Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:52 am

Sorry - too many repetitions for too many years so I have to say - this is how we said it in my schools:


I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America and TO the Republic for which it stands,”
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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by abouttime2stop on Mon Nov 20, 2017 12:05 pm

I really like seeing these outtakes. I often try to put myself in the position of the different characters in a story but I am not a writer and this gives so much more information than my imagination. The thoughts and observations of each character's perspective is revealing. I have no idea how you choose which one is the final version.
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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by trinityreader on Tue Nov 21, 2017 2:26 am

@abouttime2stop wrote:Sorry - too many repetitions for too many years so I have to say - this is how we said it in my schools:


I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America and TO the Republic for which it stands,”
That jumped out at me too! Our schools certainly got that drilled into our heads for all time. Unlike Algebra, in my case anyway.  Wink
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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by knox0606 on Tue Nov 21, 2017 3:44 am

Thanks for the outtake.  As far as I am concerned, everything I read that you write, R & R, is fantastic. 

Thank you!

Knox

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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by Sassy Lane on Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:59 am

I really enjoy these out takes from the story. It is fascinating both from a readers perspective and from a writers. Curious minds Very Happy

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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by jkfan on Tue Nov 21, 2017 11:31 am

Just found this little gem.  I love the outtakes.  It's a treat to read them and get a different perspective, especially when it's Paul's perspective.  I really loved this.  Thank you for posting it.
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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by briezee on Thu Nov 23, 2017 5:25 am

@abouttime2stop wrote:Sorry - too many repetitions for too many years so I have to say - this is how we said it in my schools:


I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America and TO the Republic for which it stands,”

Yep, stood out to me as well. I elide the "under God" part when I say it (I'm pagan), but the rest of it is pretty rote, even 25 years after I was saying it regularly.
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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by Fallschancefan on Sat Nov 25, 2017 7:23 am

Could anyone enlighten me about the jar of marmalade expression? Thanks!

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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by jkfan on Sat Nov 25, 2017 7:47 am

It's referring to this scene in Mary Ellen Carter Chapter 5:

“I was going to put marmalade on the shopping list, we’ve got half way through the last jar this morning.”
 
“Got it.” Paul took a pencil, adding a note to the notebook on the counter by the pantry. “Thank you.”
 

“The other message she had for me was that my stepfather is in the states and has sent his usual invitation to meet for dinner,” Dale paused in the doorway to look from Paul to Flynn. “May I bring him here or would you prefer it if I met him in Jackson?”


Dale has Paul put the 'jar of marmalade' on the shopping list and with the same expression drops the bombshell that his stepfather wants to meet for dinner - like it's of no more importance than putting a jar of marmalade on the shopping list.  I think of it as Dale's "nothing to see here" expression.
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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by Hayjude on Sat Nov 25, 2017 2:21 pm

In fact, as Jasper said, it’s of less importance than the jar of marmalade.
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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by Fallschancefan on Sat Nov 25, 2017 11:52 pm

Ah of course... thanks both. I was looking up American colloquialisms...

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Re: Outtake of the roof scene chapter 7

Post by Hayjude on Sun Nov 26, 2017 9:40 am

That would have been fun. Did you find anything good?
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