Caitlin was still somewhat in shock after the whole thing, even though she'd found her feet and thought that she had something of a grip on the situation. There was still a kind of 'buzzing' in the back of her head that was growing steadily more noticeable as time went on. She did see the cake box, however, though not the cake within. Adele's reaction did not give her a lot of confidence in what would be found inside though, and she wondered if she was going to be paying more for coming to their aid, than what she'd bargained for when Cassandra had called upon her. She watched the family though, studying them, the psychologist in her picking up on any small nuances and tells. Immediately, it was easy to see the jealousy of the brown-haired girl who she had already been told about, the daughter of the headmaster of Tally, aimed toward the love and attention that Caleb received from Adele. As well as the apparent close connection she held with another new student at the school but someone she had also been informed about. It was odd how the pair seemed to both fit in and be out of place a little at the same time, and she had to wonder for a moment, at least until she noticed their eyes. Lorelei was aware of the study, but she paid it no attention at the moment. When Lauren's hand squeezed her own, holding tightly, she returned the gesture and then tugged her closer in order to try and get her caught up in Jezebel's hugging too, which would happen if she came within arm's reach of Lorelei's mother. It was just a given, especially with how the events of the day had gone. "Family, hm..." Cate's voice murmured quietly, before a small huff of air was expelled. It was a strange-feeling word to consider when most of her memories of family revolved around the people who she swore were killed. But then, were those people even her family? Had they ever even existed? Or were they something that had been manufactured as a way of coping with memory loss of whatever her true former life had been? Too many questions. But she followed others to the kitchen all the same, before offering Rheldor a small smile and polite nod, "Hello, it's a pleasure to meet you. I'm Caitlin, Cassandra's aunt." She introduced herself quietly, before glancing over where Cass and Alex had entered, a concerned frown on her lips as she looked at the girl. Cass herself seemed to have decided not to debate too much more over what had happened and where the blame should lie. In the end, she supposed it was Anna's to carry, the woman having intended all along to sacrifice herself if anything went awry. It reminded her of her parents all too much, and their willingness to hide her and take what was coming, rather than risking all of them running and being caught. It left a slight sour taste in her mouth, despite knowing that in the situation with her being the parent she would do the same. Alex would do the same. It was just part of caring for someone who was younger, giving them the chance at life. The mention of her caused her to blink though, the redhead lifting her head a little to glance around before shrugging and moving to the seat, to sit down heavily. "I'm actually not feeling too great, but I guess my husband's going to force me to eat," Cassandra said quietly, a hand on her abdomen. She wasn't lying either, really. After having to watch Alex go through torturous pain, Caleb almost dying... the shock of discovery of her relation to Bethianna, only to watch her fade the same way her own mother had before her eyes. There was a deep nausea in Cass' belly, and a near haunted look in her features now that things appeared to be settling. This was why she hadn't wanted to stop to think, and she wondered if she could get away with excusing herself to lie down.
Whatever Millea had expected of Caitlin, the other woman clearly wasn't able to provide. She glanced up at the golden eyed woman with her own deep turquoise, the colour as unnatural and unique as any other Sorceress, and then brows raised briefly as Millea simply left. Feeling as though she may have got her bearings somewhere, Cate pushed herself to stand once again, watching Adele with her son and feeling something like... deja vu? A frown touched her lips briefly, because while she'd thought for a moment of when she'd found Cassandra alive after the attack on her brother's family, the girl that flashed within her mind wasn't her niece. "Over time I can completely seal up the leak in Caleb and Alex for good, but the process does hurt... that was something Thia hadn't worked out how to prevent," Maybe one day someone would be able to work out how to properly prevent the wound that males were born with, or even how to treat it or assist them through Acceptance without causing them so much pain, but right now there was at least the promise that they could be treated so that they wouldn't fade. Cate straightened her shoulders slightly. Although her mind was still trying to organise and process a great deal, she could at least try to keep herself together for now. She didn't know most of the people in the room, and those she did she only barely knew. She did look over at Améa as the woman spoke though, before her hand tightened around the crystals again. "She's not dead... beings of pure magic can't die, they-..." Caitlin's words cut off as her head tilted, a frown on her lips as she suddenly thought how strange it was that the woman's 'end' had been so very similar to that of Cassandra's mother. She recalled the woman having been completely drained, faded. "... fade." She mused. She then opened her hand to look at the crystals again, "Her power was expended, passed on to another, so the nature of her existence changed." And in this case, that took the form of a natural crystal, which she could feel the faintest hint of her Mother within. "She's content with the outcome," She then added quietly, to at least try to offer some kind of comfort. --- "Hey," Cass frowned as Alex said that he should apologise, and her fingers clasped at his chin to make him look directly at her, "You shouldn't be apologising for anything here. And I know what you're thinking... that you're the cause of so many deaths and so on, but that is in no way true. Do you think she came here today without some idea the likely outcome? You can't apologise for being born, for what you inherited. Everyone made choices... and..." She paused and a flash of inner pain caused her to wince, "If anything, it was my fault for not having restrained Caleb better, or not taken him out when it was looking bad... Caitlin's arrival kept Anna from having to sacrifice herself for you, but then he slipped from my hands..." The redhead sighed and shook her head. "I'm going to smack you if I suspect you blaming yourself," Cass said, her gaze narrowing at Alex. However, the contact with the twins at least seemed to remind him that there was still something good in this outcome. He would be here to watch them grow up, to chase the boys away from them and all, though she sighed as he suggested she go check on her aunt and that she could learn more now. Cassandra rolled her eyes as she gave Alex a 'really?' look, and then plopped herself carefully on his lap. "I've got my entire existence to learn more about myself, and Cate... is throwing out some serious 'give me space to sort things out' vibes right now. I'm right where I want to be," The woman assured him, before noticing the movement at the side gate and the man who suddenly appeared. Just Rheldor's appearance alone gave away what his possible project must be and she couldn't help but grin at his enthusiasm and pride as he guessed exactly right on Alex's survival and made his way over. Even if he was oblivious of the current mood, he was a presence that seemed to be uplifting in just his mere vicinity. She would wait for Alex to open the box, and then duck her head with a grin and silent chuckle at the sight of the cake, before burying her face at the side of Alex's neck to hide her chuckling for a moment until she could speak without laughing. "You should have told me what you planned, you could have helped me and Caleb with the one we were making, Pops," Cass said lightly with a small grin to the man, "You can help us decorate it though, we got distracted from that." She then nudged Alex, "Want me to get a knife? You have to take the first piece, you know."
Sensing herself that Alex was strong enough to sustain himself now, and with the knowledge that she'd done enough to keep his energy from leaking, Caitlin finally released her hold on him and drew back quickly, shuffling away until her back hit the wall, followed by her head as she closed her eyes. She didn't look over toward the faded shell of her mother - she couldn't - nor could she be in contact with any of the other people in the room right now. Even with so much energy having been used, there was still a store left within her that she didn't know what to do with. Not only that, the shock of everything that had happened, that had been revealed, was almost completely overwhelming her sense of reason and it was taking everything she had to not bolt out of there and hide. Not that she was certain where she would go or if she could even walk right now. "Shit..." Came a whisper from the woman, Irish accent thick with emotion and confusion. She'd known that there was something different about Alex and his family. And now she could feel it. But she wasn't like he or Adele or her daughters who had a mortal parent, nor exactly like the pure Sorceresses, Lillian and Millea, or like her mother had been, though perhaps closer to being like them. She was something else again, and as she brought her knees up to lean her forearm on them, lifting her other hand to her face, she struggled between what her heart knew but her mind had forgotten. She knew she'd been missing Thia for over a century, but she couldn't remember anything aside from the years growing up in this world. Aside from those tiny snippets that flashed during their connection, she had nothing. Cassandra offered Adele a small smile and gently rubbed the other woman's back lightly for a moment, before she then crawled over to Alex. The circle was broken, people were upset, relieved, mixed. She'd just lost a grandmother she'd never known she had, Caitlin was in pain, but clearly in need of space. But Alex was in pain, and not just physical. Cass looked over him, before then lying down beside him and pulling her husband into her arms to hug him tightly, offering comfort that she knew he needed right now. Staring as Bethianna's form shimmered away beneath Lea's hand, Jezebel slowly sank down onto a couch, her own eyes glassy, completely speechless in the light of all that had gone on. Her hand tugged at Lorelei's, to draw her own daughter onto her lap and hold her tightly. This was the potential price for loving a mortal too much... to the point that you would give your life for theirs. It's what Lorelei could have ended up potentially doing, if the curse that had been used had been any stronger. The teenager allowed her mother to take comfort in her, though one hand continued to hold onto Lauren's, a small tug as though to invite her to sit with them as well. Jezebel would gladly hug them both, Lei knew that much. "It is sad for losing Thia," Lorelei's voice said softly, mournful. "But new beginning also. We have two surviving male Sorcerors and Thia's blood family..." She tried to look at some of the more positive aspects, though she knew it would not help to fill the hole that Bethianna had left with those who were closest to her. She watched as the gem was handed to Caitlin, who stared at it in her hand, next to the other she still held that was pale purple. "Three," Caitlin responded quietly, her voice hoarse from the pain she was holding in. "My brother..." She whispered, and as she jostled the gems in her hand and they tapped together, another flash or memory ran through her mind. Bethianna holding two infants in her arms, the boy only about a year or so older than the newborn girl, while he played with the bright violet pendant that hung from her neck. Being told the story of how the boy had given her renewed hope, that thanks to him she would be able to have her twin back once she was able to leave. Caitlin's hand clamped around the gems as she inhaled a shuddered gasp before swallowing thickly. She felt Cassandra's own sudden heartache, as well as mixture of surprise and fear at the mention of the girl's father. All this time they'd believed him to be dead, but Cate knew otherwise now. He couldn't die, not entirely. But he wouldn't be able to bring himself back on his own. "I have to get him..." The woman croaked quietly. He'd been buried for fifteen years, but she knew that his body would be in pristine condition. All this time, there was so much she hadn't been aware of. She wanted to go right now, but even with her reserves, she knew it would be too much after what she'd already done today. That, and she still needed to get her bearings, try to figure out the rush of information that she was trying not to mentally drown in.
Caitlin Sullivan changed their profile photo
The distress was so sharp, the woman had never sensed her niece so strongly before and that was what scared her the most. It had led to her teleporting to Adele's house without even a second thought, and letting herself in. What some might perceive as seconds, Caitlin absorbed as though it were minutes for her. From the women surrounding the young man she knew all too well, to the bloodied elbows and obvious signs of pain and the sense that his life was ebbing away. Jezebel - like her own twin sister - was focused on Alex, intent on offering her own willpower as strength for him. While Lorelei observed his life signs, barely aware of the blaze of red that moved like a streak into and across the room. Cassandra sensed it though, she knew Cate had arrived and her mind pleaded with the woman. Cate didn't know exactly what she was supposed to do, she could only get strange inklings from something within Cassandra that she'd never realised was there before, and yet knew it was a part of her. Of both of them. She stopped beside the crouched red-haired woman, and lowered herself next to her, and Caitlin's hand moved forward in order to press over the other woman's. And then time froze for a brief moment. To those who were deeply in tune, those of her blood or of the original Six, it was almost like a pin being stuck into an inflatable castle, which had been full to bursting since the beginning of time, but concealed as though it didn't exist. Caitlin herself stopped breathing as something like a metaphysical shell shattered from around her, the ginger hair brightened and shined in that instant to a sunset colour, and seemingly ordinary eyes transformed into burning impossibly bright shades of turquoise, as her complexion paled naturally. Though the physical changes would go unnoticed compared to what had been brought up from beneath the surface. A well of power that had never been tapped, a century's worth at least, and it flowed easily to Bethianna, who could then use it to sustain Alexander, because of the impossible discovery of what she carried within. Sorceraic magic. Concentrated and mingled with that of Fae. Cassandra continued to hold onto Caleb as she watched, tears beginning to fall from her eyes. She hadn't wanted to believe it, what she'd felt earlier. But she could see it now, and she prayed that it would help Alex to fight through his ordeal. Even so, she knew somehow, through Cate, and through Bethianna, that this extra power was going to intensify Alex's pain only more. She couldn't imagine the agony he had to be feeling, and so she could only cuddle Caleb and stroke the boy's hair gently, as though to try and soothe them both. And she prayed that it was enough. Caitlin herself was caught in something she both knew and didn't. And with the suddenness of the connection and the shattering of the curse which had concealed her for so long, she suddenly received snippets of places she didn't know, times she didn't remember. Her brother was at the forefront of these, the red haired boy, forever jovial, laughing and singing and bringing smiles to others. "What is that...?" A young girl, she could sense something almost like a scar in her brother's energy. It was strange, but important somehow. "Mother did it... to stop me from leaking," Came the response, before he flicked her nose. But then she placed her hand on him to search... and received memories from him. Pain, burning through his veins... a woman trying to hold back tears as she used a method taught to her by one of the Elder ones, to try and repair her baby boy's power leak. A number of times... over a course of weeks... the baby screaming, but she refused to give up. But it worked, gradually, over time, until he was whole. In the current time, Cate was frozen in her spot, knowing that she was offering something important here, but for the life of her she was confused and suddenly quite terrified. She didn't dare look at the woman beside her, she couldn't, because she knew her. She didn't know how, she couldn't remember how, and yet, images flashed in her mind. A mother doting on her healthy son as he ran around. A flash of contemplation over the fate of another child she was carrying. Confliction upon the birth of a girl, and seeing her for the first time. Caitlin closed her eyes and ducked her head, she had to push down everything that had suddenly rose, which was threatening to consume her and draw her away from what was happening here. But she couldn't. She would do anything for Cassandra, to make sure that the girl would have a happy life, and right now that meant offering whatever it was she had that apparently everyone else here did as well, to give Alexander the chance to fight for his life. "When we leave, we'll forget?" "Don't worry, sister. Even if we forget everything else, we have each other and Padraig McBobbin... and maybe... maybe one day Mother will find us on the outside..." Catelin bit on her lip. The memories had to stop, They weren't important right now. And so the woman took a breath and focused purely on Alexander, willing him to remember everything that he was fighting for right now. She may not have understood what was going on, but she could follow the flow of everyone else around her easily enough, as the storage of power she'd held was gradually given to help him hold on for longer, regardless of the extra agony that it would put him through.
"Pouty people can be stubborn too," Caitlin huffed, though there was an almost impish amusement in her gaze which would give away her own teasing with the knowledge that he was still trying to work his way around how blunt he could be without offending. She didn't need to probe to guess at what he may have been thinking though, and it was something that she didn't know what to think about herself. She'd grown attached, she knew that much. Enough that she would be upset if something did happen. His presence would be missed, and it made her uneasy about his desire to try and take care of things alone. Still, she decided to leave the subject lie for now, preferring to focus on something a bit more positive, like the coming holidays and what they represented. "And why not? I mean, magic is all about belief anyway. As romantic a notion as I know it is, I find comfort in the idea that there's at least one day each year where the majority of people want to give, rather than take," Cate shrugged gently and leaned against him lightly, lifting a hand to summon her glass to it wordlessly. She snorted quietly at Dylan's view on the day, her brows raising as she looked at him, "That's because you grew up in the wrong environment for it." She said gently. While she could understand that more negative viewpoint on people possibly becoming greedy, there were large differences when one saw it from the point of view of people who didn't care about receiving anything, and appreciated the effort that others did go to regardless. She snorted at the idea of actually giving lessons on Christmas in a classroom, "You'd probably like that." She muttered, though rolled her eyes as he picked on her about her books. "I'm surprised you even know who Batman is," Cate poked her tongue out briefly, before taking a sip of her drink. "It's not that bad, anyway," She sniffed. She liked to think that she portrayed as accurate a character as she could, or was allowed. It wasn't her fault that the fans seemed to enjoy the idea of some mysterious bad boy guardian type. "I'll neither confirm nor deny your assumptions, and instead you will have to live with wondering whether that really is why I keep you around," She retorted, lifting her nose a little, before then finding herself drawn in close once again, "Did I ever say that I was complaining?" The redhead smirked then, before leaning forward to press another soft kiss to his lips, "I was already here when you got home, remember." She smiled and set the drink back down before turning to face him better, wrapping her arms over his shoulders, "What say we go put those fanfictions to shame."
"You're telling me," Caitlin could only agree that it was a good thing that Cassandra didn't know exactly what had happened. Now that she would never, ever live down, not even after she was long dead. Still, the look she'd given him over his apparent decision and her disagreement with it at least prevented him from arguing the point with her and she offered a snort at his complaint, "I don't know how you could forget that detail." It was a major part of her, after all. She may have been mild, gentle and calm, but she held the fierce stubbornness that an Irishwoman was well known for still, and if she didn't think it was a good idea for him to try and handle things by himself, then it wasn't a good idea, and thus she wasn't about to let him go do something stupid. At least the talk of Christmas things lessened that slight tension in the air. "Well, I suppose it is kind of domestic. It's more just about good will toward others. I mean, Muggles naturally have all these traditions and theories about a savior who was born and whatnot, but the real magic of the holiday itself is in how it brings people together and encourages them to be kind to one another," The redhead offered a gentle shrug, though she supposed it would have sounded odd to someone who had never really experienced it. Still, she would have thought that he would have seen others who did celebrate it, even from afar. "I'll teach you all the things that you need to know before the day," She said with a quiet chuckle and patted his arm lightly, before snickering at his comment over her excuse of using 'her magic' on him. "Hmph, I get paid a lot to use all kinds of terrible lines in my books," Caitlin joked, before then snickering quietly. She then listened, however, as he seemed to be trying to describe what she apparently did to him and how he felt about it. "Well, I suppose it's something you're just going to have to get used to then. It's a good thing, anyway. Nothing like a little surprise in life to give it a little spice," She offered a small grin to the man as she gave him a small nudge. "Besides, you're hardly complaining about it."
Caitlin Sullivan earned a Trophy Prolific Poster Level Four
"Merlin, she still teases me about Valentine's," It had only taken the mention of it to cause Caitlin's cheeks to turn pink. The reminders of the entire night still made her blush, and she was certain it would still for a long time yet. Cassandra hadn't even asked how it went. The simple fact that Cate hadn't come home until the next day meant that her niece had instantly made a guess that was far more accurate than the older woman liked, and she hadn't lived it down with the teen yet. Though she gave a quiet huff and set her glass down so that she could cross her arms, the woman was aware that he was right. There was a possible chance that Cassandra might not react as adversely as she feared. Perhaps would even encourage it... oh Gods, the girl might start to encourage a lot, and go out of her way to embarrass Caitlin too! The woman didn't know what was worse, now. "Well, I don't think you will be doing it alone," The woman said, rather matter-of-factly, brows raised at the man as though daring him to argue the point. It was a silly idea to try and take care of everything himself, as though he had to be responsible for making sure they had a good life, regardless of his own fate. Caitling was far too independent to allow someone to simply decide that they would take care of her happiness without her say, and there would be no arguing with her, the look in her eyes said as much as well. She reached for her drink again, taking another sip as though that were the end of that discussion, and instead focused on Christmas ideas. "What? Are you afraid of what I'd come up with? It wasn't going to be anything incredibly scary, goodness. I was just thinking, a little decorating perhaps, a nice roast dinner, exchanging of presents, the usual thing. We could drop some presents off at the tree they have in the shopping center, where people leave presents to donate to the less fortunate children. And, I don't know... Christmassy things," Maybe, with it being the season of cheer, it might even be a better time to introduce him to Cass then as well? She wasn't sure if there was going to be a big dinner with Alex's family, but if so then she supposed Cass would tell her she was coming too. She could bring Dylan? Tell Cass the history part later? All thoughts that whirled around her mind, even as she kissed the man, before he drew back and commented on her ability to change his thoughts. "All a part of my magic," Caitlin waggled her brows, before chuckling quietly, "Though I don't think it's a bad thing."
"Indeed. I have a lot of hopes for her, I mean... she's not just my niece, she's basically my daughter. I just want her to have a long and happy life and be able to do the things that she wants to," Caitlin knew she hadn't needed to say that, but it felt important for her to vocalise it. Even if she had her own children one day, she'd still think of Cassandra as her eldest, they'd been through so much together, had grown together. She was certain that if it weren't for having Cass to raise then she'd have been even more reckless with her work over the years. She'd been her lifeline, when the world had felt like it was crumbling around her. Listening to Dylan speak of having to confront the source of their pain though, caused her lips to purse slightly, even if she knew it would have to be done eventually. "And you plan to do that alone?" Cate asked with a raised brow as she glanced at him. Surely he wasn't quite that reckless, but then she also knew that he would refuse to place herself or anyone else in danger when it came to those people. "I suppose, can't really make that move until they do try something again, at least. I've been waiting, but haven't picked up on anything. I know better than to let my guard down though," Cate sighed and ran a hand through her hair for a moment, but then nodded as they spoke of Christmas, her brows shooting upward at the idea that he'd never celebrated it. "I suppose we'll have to do something about that then," The woman shook her head a little as she tutted. Fancy never having celebrated the holidays. Still, as they kissed and she was drawn over and onto his lap, the redhead pushed aside all those feelings of uncertainty and fear of the future, allowing herself to simply enjoy the moment with Dylan. She may not have known what she was supposed to be thinking, or whether Cassandra was going to react negatively to all of this, but she would allow herself this small indulgence for the care and security that the man offered her. Those other things, she could worry about later.
Caitlin knew well enough the work that Dylan did in covering for her during much of her investigating, of course she did since she'd practically written a character loosely based around him in her novels. Which reminded her, she had another due within the next month or so, something which made her sigh, but she was already basically done with it. Just another proof read and then send to her editor, who would likely want a few small changes. And then the latest would be on the shelves at the start of the coming year. She had a feeling that this one was going to be very popular with a lot of the fan base. "She will get better eventually... over time. I doubt the nightmares will ever completely go away, but she has grown stronger. I just want her to be able to live a happy life and able to plan her future, without having to worry about being chased by the past," It really was all that Caitlin had ever wanted for Cassandra. Maybe she'd wanted it for herself as well, but at the same time she'd done what she did for a reason, she couldn't allow others to suffer if there was something she could do about it. If she could put those gifts of hers to good use. Dylan was right though, holding onto the secret of their relationship and who he was would only end up damaging her relationship with Cassandra in time. The longer she kept it, the deeper the effect would be, and she didn't want to lose the girl. "I know... I'm going to need to be honest with her. Perhaps after Christmas, I don't want to cloud the holidays with something that could set her on edge," At the same time, Cate wanted Dylan to be involved a bit in the whole Christmas and New Years thing too. She found herself pursing her lips into a frustrated pout as she thought about it all. Though, listening to Dylan, she felt her ears and cheeks turn slightly red as she huffed a small chuckle and looked at her drink. "That's not really helping," The woman murmured quietly. She still didn't know how she felt about all this. She found she cared for him, but a part of her mind still felt awkward, like it wasn't right. But was anything ever really right? Rather than question it all further and potentially driving herself mad, Caitlin simply looked toward the man with a warm smile, before she leaned over to press a gentle kiss to his lips.
"Yes... I know you're right about that, but I'm just rather used to being the one who looks out for myself and others I suppose," After all, it was what she'd had to do since she was in her early twenties and left with a toddler niece that she had to suddenly be the sole guardian for and raise. There had been so many fears, so many questions back then. The young woman hadn't known what she was supposed to do, so she did what she believed she had to, and simply concentrated on doing her best to provide as good a life as possible for Cassandra, while making sure that less people had to suffer the way they had. "Don't worry, I'm well aware of the attention that my talents gather as well, perhaps the one thing that makes me hesitant. I don't want further investigation leading to Cass and her... interesting biology. There's still so much I need to investigate myself with that," Caitlin sighed and rubbed her forehead. She felt like she was missing a piece to the puzzle there. Perhaps that's why the woman had been willing to question Dylan's thoughts on... whatever it was that they were. She wasn't entirely sure herself, and she needed some kind of confirmation, maybe? She didn't even know. She knew well that they were basically in a relationship, but the fact that they'd been so secret about it made everything feel less solid, she supposed. She offered an innocent look at the accusation, but agreed with a nod that they acted as though they were together... well, most of the time. It was the question of Cassandra that had prevented them from being open about anything, and the woman nodded again. "I honestly don't know what she would think or feel. I mean, she's mature enough that she would want to listen to an explanation of everything, but she does still suffer from the memories and pains that the past caused," Caitlin sighed as she closed her eyes and rested her head on Dylan's shoulder. "You're right though, I would choose what was best for her. Maybe that's why I've been leaving it for so long, telling her. At the same time, I feel like I'm doing her an injustice by expecting the worst case scenario as well, and by sneaking around when I know that she's very aware that I am hiding something." The woman expelled a breath of air with a quietly huffed sigh, "I really need to stop procrastinating over it."
"Indeed. But if I could protect her from having to lose so much all over again, I'd do whatever I had to," Caitlin knew that Cassandra wasn't the only one who'd lost so much, that she'd effectively lost a whole lot more than her niece because she'd known all their family, grown up around them and had to watch what had happened. She remembered all of it with so much clarity. But it was far easier to focus on Cass and try to make sure that those nightmares the younger woman had would continue to lessen until they were nothing but a faded memory. Perhaps, one day Cate's would become the same, though she doubted it. She would never let on about her own terrors though, she didn't want to worry anyone else, or give them reason to think there was something wrong. "Well... I know for a fact that I'm one of the most popular in the world for calling in for these things. My gifts and experience tend to make me something of an expert, you know," Caitlin's gaze narrowed at Dylan, before she then leaned over a little, against his side and pulling his arm around her. It felt safe there, she realised, and began to wonder when it was that she'd started feeling safe from being around the man. It made her think about what they should do, whether she should introduce Cass to him soon, explain who he was... she still wasn't sure. "What we are?" The woman returned to the conversation and blinked a little before glancing up at him with a raised brow. "Good question, I suppose. What do you think we are?" Perhaps it was a loaded question, but Cate found herself curious of what Dylan thought. She already knew that he would shadow her if he thought she was going to go running into a minefield. She could know a whole lot more as well if she wanted, but she didn't want to go reading his mind. That would be cheating.
"Not just my life, Cassandra's as well. Not exactly something I would like to repeat, even if this is what I'm good at, what I've done for half my life," Caitlin sighed as she lifted a hand to rub at her forehead a little. She knew that Cass would tell her that they needed to do the right thing. Especially if it was people they knew who were being harmed. They'd lost a family before, and neither of them wanted to go through a repetition of that. To see a family be torn to shreds. "It hits so close to home," She admitted quietly, "A family being targeted, the potential for them to be eradicated. It's not fair." She glanced up at Dylan when he reached for her hand, and offered a small sigh. "I tend to go after the people who have no remorse for what they've done. I'm rather certain you don't fall into that category, at least not from what I've learned over past months," Caitlin murmured, offering a gentle cluck of her tongue, before then tilting her head at him as he went on to imply what she assumed was for her to give the case to someone else, because of the danger it could place her in, and the people who cared about her. "And who else does what I do as effectively?" The woman asked, a brow raised at him, before a gentle huffed breath fell from her lips in almost a half chuckle, "Sounds to me like you just don't want me to place myself in a potentially precarious position for selfish reasons." Not that she minded, really. It was nice to hear, nice to know that someone was selfish enough to want to talk her out of helping others if it meant she would be safe.
"I believe that the suspicion is that he was a target because he was the husband of Adele, who has a history with Sollozzo. Which, essentially, means that her entire family is at risk," Caitlin explained, already ruling out the idea that David would be the only target of someone who had a vendetta against someone else. It did mean that Cassandra could potentially be in trouble, or at the very least that Alex would become a target. She didn't like it one bit. And she knew that if she got involved then it would paint a larger target on her own back, especially with her track record of finding and capturing these kinds of monsters. The other part was whether she could handle seeing and knowing the mind of yet another monster. Her life in Narrie had been quiet, and near blissful to be honest. She still got nightmares as it was. She still locked all her doors and windows, set up charms and wards. Still worried that someone would find her or Cassandra. This would only cause more anxiety again. But if not her, then who was going to make sure that this man was found, make sure that no one else suffered at his hands? "I wouldn't want you placing yourself under a microscope, Dylan," The woman said with a soft tut. She knew that the right people only had to see a picture or hear about a description and he could be discovered. "But... I started using my gifts for this kind of work, because I could help people. What if I didn't do anything and then someone else died? If I can possibly do something to prevent that, then... I should, shouldn't I?" It was a question she'd asked herself for more than half her life, the question she asked whenever she was unsure about a case, unsure about the risk. And still, Caitlin found herself more unnerved than normal. Her last case had resulted in her almost being killed. She had a bad feeling this would not be far from a similar situation.
"I'm sure the day that you feel like someone might have discovered your cover, you will vanish before they have a chance to catch you offguard," Caitlin raised a brow at the man as he sat beside her, and then hummed quietly in response to his continued words. She understood his concern, but it was not necessarily her concern. She had done this for more than half her life, she knew well the dangers, the nightmares that her work inflicted her with. But the fact was she had a talent, one that few were able to utilise the way that she could. And the fact that it was so close to home made her want to keep those she cared about safe as well. "They contacted me, because it's a high chance that the murderer is someone who had given them the slip multiple times, both domestically and internationally," The redhead murmured. She lifted a hand to rub her face with a gentle sigh. "Very few know at the moment, I don't think Cass even does, though I know now why Alex rushed out of the house in the dark hours of the morning. The victim was a local man, David Tallenery, Alex's brother in law." She sighed again and her brow furrowed. "Not only that, but an Auror who was tailing him was also murdered. It was a targeted crime, and quite likely committed by the man behind their reason for having so many Aurors stationed around Narrie this year," A dangerous man, indeed. Caitlin knew that it would be risky if he was as knowledgeable as was indicated. To have known about the Auror tailing David, and to have dispatched of them so easily. "Do you know much about Thomas Sollozzo?" She asked Dylan softly. She didn't expect that all criminals or former criminals knew about each other, this Sollozzo did have a reputation. She would have to be careful, if he caught wind of her investigating then she could end up in more trouble than she bargained for.
Although she'd fallen asleep at some point, Caitlin was acutely away the moment that Dylan was near, and she gradually stirred just slightly, enough to get a grip on her glass just before it almost fell from her hand. Luckily, he also arrived to get a hold of it as she yawned and peered up at him through her hazy blue gaze. She shifted to sit a little as her glass was set on the coffee table nearby, before stretching and then breathing out a quiet chuckle. "I'm sure there could be better surprises than a sleeping woman almost spilling scotch on your carpet," Cate mused softly, and glanced over to watch as Dylan moved to pour himself a drink as well. She waited where she was, expecting that he would probably join her if he was asking questions already. The man wasn't exactly known for asking for no reason, or for leaving anything unanswered when he felt there must be a story. "Hm, something of a day, anyway..." The woman said quietly, reaching for her drink once again in order to take another sip. "It seems I'm back to working cases," Caitlin then murmured, looking down into her drink, "A murder."
- 1993-1999: Hogwarts (Hufflepuff)
- 2000-2006: England University of Magical Studies
Friends come difficult to the woman who, while is happy to help others, is very conservative and private about her own life. She is friendly enough, but it takes a while for her to really warm up to others in a friendship sense.
The few family she has are more important to Cate than anything and she will do whatever she has to in order to protect them and keep them happy. Seh is a fierce protector of her dear ones.
Due to her private nature, dating wasn't something she did much of, however she has fallen into a strange kind of relationship with the man who has basically stalked and protected her for years.
Cate has no time for those who find themselves on her bad side, and will generally ignore them. Though threats to those she cares about would be met with trouble.
- the history she recalls is a lie, and she has discovered that her mother is a Sorceress and father is full fae, her full powers having been unlocked
- moved to Australia to escape a group that were hunting her and her niece
- is a bestselling author who has published a series of fictional crime novels that are loosely based on her experiences as a profiler/investigator
- is the legal guardian of her niece, Cassandra
- recognised by the Ministry of Magic for her Divination and Psychometry skills, and assistance in locating criminals in the wizarding community
- also works as a psychologist and counselor
- very clearly a workaholic
Cate would be considered a no-nonsense woman, which may sound strange when someone is told about her personal gifts and the fact that she is an expert in Divination - a talent that only a few wizards truly appreciate. She has over the years managed to prove herself however, due to her natural stubbornness and unwillingness to believe in dead ends.
That aside, the woman is quite caring, especially of her niece, and if someone manages to get past her emotional barrier that she tends to maintain for the sake of herself and Cassandra, then they will find her to be a rather loving and protective woman. She has felt too many losses in her life to be able to trust or let people in easily, so there are few who she can actually call real friends.
Responsibility drives Caitlin, as well as a desire to see others achieve happiness and/or justice. And though she is haunted a great deal by some of the things she has had to bare witness to in the past, she refuses to allow anyone else to hold those burdens if she can help it.
As far as teaching goes, she is perhaps a little more relaxed than one might think upon first glance. But she finds the idea of being able to help provide encouragement and assistance to the youth to be refreshing in comparison to her life back in the UK, and looks forward to her rose as Divination Professor and Student Counselor.
If the fair complexion, bright red hair and very blue eyes didn't give it away, then her accent would certainly let someone know that she's an Irish lass through and through. She carries herself with confidence, and always dresses well. Her hair is kept neat and falls in just the right amount of wave and curl to rest over her shoulders and the top of her back.
There seems to be a near constant aura of calm openness around the woman, and she appears to know without being told the boundaries that individuals have. She does not really appear as one might expect a Diviner or DADA expert to look, her blouses and knee length pencil skirts appearing stylish (and usually are designer wear), as well as the pumps that add a couple of inches to her usual 5'3 height.
(Note, the beginning in Italics was all fabricated memories of Caitlin's)
Early childhood was a fairly normal wizarding one for the young girl born to a pair of magical folk in Ireland, and growing up around her family who were all wizards or witches. She had an older brother, who was well into his teen years by the time she was born, so was rather spoiled by bother her parents as well as him. She was a lighthearted and loving girl, at least until she neared the age of ten. And that's when the voices started.
They began as whispers, something she could barely hear, but gradually the voices became louder, impossible to block out. It left the girl awake at nights, and unable to concentrate on anything during the day, pulling her into hysterics because of it. Telepathy. It manifested at such a young age that she didn't quite understand what was going on until her parents realised it and explained that it came from her mother's side and the rumoured ancestry that involved a witch being impregnated by a male fairy.
After that, charms were used in order to give her mind some peace, and soon after she turned eleven she received her letter to Hogwarts. Excited, she ended up being sorted into Hufflepuff and enjoyed learning more about magic. By the time she was thirteen, the girl at least had enough control of her telepathy to be able to pick and choose when she would hear thoughts, however she had to be careful with timing, because she was still learning how to control it between individuals, rather than opening up to a torrent of thoughts from all around her.
At fifteen, tragedy struck home, however. Christmas break had begun and she was going home to spend it with the family, but was never prepared for what she saw. Upon arriving at the coven house, she witnessed a horrific scene. And, as a dizzy spell washed over her, she gripped the wall, only to become drowned suddenly in images and sensations of what had gone on. Pain, terror, malevolence, she could almost piece together the entire ordeal.
The girl fell to her knees with her hands to her head, trying to block it out as she shrieked until she was found by someone. The next few days, people could barely get a word out of her. It was when her brother - who had moved to England a couple of years prior - arrived, that she finally was able to collapse into his arms and tell him everything. It appeared that another talent had manifested as psychometry.
With their parents gone, the young man gained custody of his teenage sister, and she was taken back to the States with him, where she had to adjust to a new life. It was a little overwhelming, especially since she had a new gift to try to control, but at least she still had Hogwarts as a constant, and was actually relieved to return there eventually. She started taking to wearing gloves much of the time, finding that without the skin contact with objects, she didn't have so many issues. The attack on the coven still sat in the back of her mind, however. Luckily, one of the teachers was able to help her learn to adjust a little, and control her gifts, though cautioned her against letting too many people know about them.
What also helped her adjust to everything that overwhelmed her was a couple of years later when she became an aunt to a beautiful baby girl. She doted on girl, named Cassandra, whose mother was thought to be a metamorhphmagus it turned out. Having the red-haired girl to smile at her and cheer her up when she visited made the adjustment easier on the teen.
So it was that Cate threw herself into study, now with a better grasp on her gifts, focusing a lot on Divination, Charms, Care of Magical Creatures, and Defence Against the Dark Arts. Considering she'd spent time trying to learn how to not be stuck in others' heads when younger, and what had happened to her family, it seemed to make sense to her to learn a great deal about those things.
The rest of her school life passed relatively well. She made friends, dated a couple of boys, and ended up with high marks in a lot of subjects. As soon as she graduated, she then went on to University, where she continued study, moving also into psychology and the workings of the mind. She also studied Magical Creatures and the types that were known, wanting to be able to help others on another of levels, wizards and other species.
Cate had barely graduated with her degree, however, when tragedy hit hard a second time. This time it was her brother and his wife who were the victims, and she had to rush back to their home in order to console a very young, confused and broken-hearted Cassandra. The crime scene was familiar, but after months of investigation by both Muggle police, and Aurors, they'd ended up with no trail, a dead end.
The now-guardian of her niece found that something snapped then. She returned to University once she had settled into a new place with Cass, making sure that the girl was alright in her new school and making friends. Cate finished studying Law and Criminal Psychology on top of her previous degree, gaining a PhD. Once she gained her doctorate, she began her own investigation into her brother's death, not believing that it could really have been a complete dead end.
Through her gifts, as well as a snooping around and investigation on her side, the woman eventually was able to discover who it was that had not only killed her brother, but had also massacred her family in Ireland years ago, as well as a couple of other related lines, as though picking them off. She took her evidence to the right people, and a hunt was made on a wizard who was a death eater that seemed to belong to a group.
In order to work through what she'd discovered and been able to do, Cate wrote a book on the whole thing, one that became a bestseller, though was considered crime fiction, and she was more than happy to label it that. She decided to continue work as a criminal psychologist and became a consultant who gained a reputation for her ability to assist Aurors with locating criminals and solving mysterious crimes in the wizarding community. This also began a series of books based on crime investigations and the psychological profiling involved.
Caitlin did take a little time off when Cassandra received her invitation to Hogwarts as well, in order to spend some time helping her get prepared and make sure she was alright to go to the school. The girl had also turned out to be a metamorphmagus, which made things interesting, if a little stressful.
Unfortunately, a young Cassandra also wanted to help, and Caitlin had to keep wards and spells on the door to her office so that the teen wouldn't go snooping whenever she was home. She knew that she meant well, but she wanted Cass to have a normal and enjoyable life, and not worry about the bad things that happened. It was a task, that was for certain, since the girl seemed adamant that she was going to follow in her aunt's footsteps, going so far as to get into fights now and then when standing up for other students who were being bullied.
Aside from a few notes from the school regarding those incidents, everything was great until the last crime Cate had been involved in solving, and the two women ended up finding their own lives on the line when it seemed that they were actually the target of the shadow group that had hunted the rest of their family years prior. They ended up being stalked and hunted and were so close to having ended up on the victims list before being rescued that Caitlin decided it was time for a change.
And so the woman decided to move, heading to Australia where a friend pointed her toward and set her up with an interview at a Magical school in the middle of nowhere, to apply as a school counselor and perhaps a Professor, due to her experience. Cassandra, meanwhile, even though she should be graduated, had taken too much time off in her last year due to the situation they'd been in, and has been enrolled to study at least another semester to try and make up for it.
That first year in Australia though was an eye-opener, and not only did Cassandra discover a great deal about herself (such as her mother being full fae, and not a metamorphmagus), but Caitlin also discovered through events going on regarding Cass' husband and his family, that there was much more to her own history, that she isn't mortal at all but in fact Sorceraic and Fae, and that the childhood she remembers was fabricated... she had in fact existed for a much longer time in a world she didn't remember.
In recent times, she vanished, having traced footsteps to a place that Caitlin believes might have answers.