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One universal truth of the US Military is that it takes an ordinary man or woman and breaks him down, stripping away all of the selfishness, cowardice, doubt, pride, and individualism. Shaping each…Continue
The wind whistled past the windows mixing with the occasional clatter of the wheels speaking to the tracks below, while faint murmurs of conversation echoed around the closed in confines of the cab.…Continue
“Yo Jerry, anyone around this place know how to make a decent cup of coffee? I mean this drivel is just cruel and unusual punishment.”Sniffing at the concoction that swirled around the bottom of the…Continue
Therian :||: Stag
Sexuality: Straight :||: Relationship: Single
Family: Deceased (Don't ask)
Occupation: Navy Veteran / Psychologist
Residence: Therian Faction House
22 :||: Male :||: Tanned
6'1'' :||: Athletic & Muscled :||: Vegetarian
Hair: Dirty Blonde :||: Eyes: Blind - Cloudy cobalt blue
Scars: Various healed burn marks and scars all over body
FC: Max Thieriot
Thoughtful :||: Intelligent :||: Personable :||: Charming
Health conscious :||: Mellow :||: Solitary :||: Wise
Sarcastic :||: Blunt :||: Cynical :||: Grim
Hundreds of children every year get put into the system, abandoned by parents who either never cared for them, didn’t want them to begin with, or didn’t have the means to support them. Most of those children never see a loving home, they spend years bouncing from foster home to foster home weaving through the system until they become old enough to be cast out on their own. Some end up in juvenile detention, thinking life on the streets is better than taking a chance on a home. Every once in awhile though, there is a story of beating the odds, of an individual who against all odds crawled and scratched their way to a better life.
“What do you mean the bed’s empty?”
“I mean just that doctor. She’s gone.”
“That’s impossible, the woman just gave birth less than an hour ago. Find her.”
3 hours later Charlene stood staring at the empty bed, the sheets still ruffled and soiled from the birth. Several nurses and a couple of the security staff had scoured all 14 levels of St. Anthony’s Hospital only to find that the woman had disappeared without a trace. Jack, the head of security, checked the video feeds and together they had watched as the woman slipped from the bed and avoided the nursing staff all the way out the door. She’d left no personal effects and they weren’t even sure if the name she had given upon check in had been her real name. Filling out the paperwork for the police officers hadn’t taken as long as she’d expected, and with a little help from her nurses on staff they had come up with a sketch of the woman.
Before she knew where she was going Charlene found herself in the maternity ward, holding the squirming baby boy in her arms. He was strong, his little fists waving in the air as if he were fighting an invisible foe while his legs kicked almost constantly. He was so tiny, so innocent and helpless, now nameless with not a single person in all the world to defend or protect him. Over her 10 year career as the Chief of the ER she’d delivered a number of babies, even watched a good number of them given away to other families and yet this one instance broke her heart. He’d been abandoned, deserted without a second thought and would never know the loving embrace of his birth mother. She’d left him in a world that was cruel and unyielding, that took any little weakness and used it to destroy.
A solitary tear worked its way down her cheek as she watched the little one fall asleep in her arms, completely oblivious to his predicament and the precarious state of his young life. Something about the infant kept her coming back to the Ward, watching as he grew in strength though with no one to claim him. Charlene broke protocol, putting in a call to a friend who ran a foster home in the next county. Margerie was more than happy to take in the baby, pushing the paperwork through the social worker so that after a month the little one was finally taken from the hospital. Charlene and the nursing staff gave him his name, feeling that at least with a name he might have a better chance of carving out a place in the world for himself. Thus through St. Anthony’s Hospital staff Ryker Graham Miles was given over into the care of the state, a ward of the system.
A couple of months later the mother was found, picked up several states away in a vehicle stolen right out of the hospital parking lot. Charlene was called to the precinct, identifying the mother as she sat in an interrogation room. With two cops present the doctor listened as the harried woman tried to explain her actions, insisting that it was dangerous for anyone to be around the infant. Incensed and angry beyond compare she burst into the room and raked the woman over the coals for abandoning her child, for leaving him without a second thought.
“You don’t understand! He will be the death of you and everyone close to you! It’s his destiny to destroy everyone that loves him.”
Disgusted, Charlene couldn’t look at the woman as she was taken away though she could see the desperation the was written on her face. It wasn’t in Charlene’s nature to hold a grudge and yet she couldn’t steam the flow of hate that suffused her body as she watched the mother sign away her rights as mother to the little boy. In doing so the infant would forever be a dependent of that state, another child that would get lost in the system and struggle through to adulthood. Unfortunately there wasn’t much more Charlene could do, but hope and pray that maybe the precious little boy would be one of the hundreds that made something of himself.
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The running count was fifteen. Fifteen different places that Ryker had been shuffled into since he was a month old. His infancy was spent in the care of a young woman that he couldn’t even remember the name of, once he’d hit 2 years of age she had put in for a transfer. Babies were her specialty and once you were no longer considered an infant you were packaged up and shipped out to another location. Like a piece of mail or an old rented piece of furniture that had outgrown its usefulness. It was the life of an orphan, the reality that kids out into the system came to terms with early in life. The ones that weren’t lucky enough to get adopted that is.
The ideal age for possible adoption statistically was between 2 and 10, so the places he’d been put in had heavy traffic and a revolving door of hope. Hope for the potential parents that paraded in day in and day out looking for the children they so desperately wanted, and hope for the orphans that put on their best hand-me-down clothes with shining smiles on their faces in an effort to make a good impression. Ryker’s social worker had been confident that he’d be adopted, with shaggy dirty blonde hair and dark navy blue eyes he was a handsome little boy with a spark of mischief in him. The handsome one’s always went first, the ones with personality and Ryker had more personality packed into his little body than a dozen like him.
However, the years passed and no offers were made, no potential parents that had fallen in love with the precocious little blonde. The social worker couldn’t understand it, by the time Ryker hit 11 he was passed the window of optimal adoption and yet it defied everything she knew about the system. The young man was smart, his grades were impeccable and he soaked up information like a sponge. He was observant to a fault, seeing things that most people looked over and understood the human condition in a way that was incredibly sad. At such a tender age he knew more about the world than most people who were in their 80’s, his little heart and soul wizened far beyond his years.
Ryker was active, always outside exploring and playing, enjoying the outdoors with an abandon that was enchanting to watch and yet countless couples had overlooked him. It was almost as if he had a dark cloud looming over him that detracted all potential families from him, leaving him to be shuffled from one home to another. Most children would have despaired, acted out in anger and desperation, yet Ryker remained calm and leveled headed which made his story even more heartbreaking.
By the time he turned 13 Ryker had come to terms with the fact that he wasn’t going to be adopted. He couldn’t explain how he knew it, but he knew he’d always be alone, always be on his own. He’d been allowed at that point to look into his own file, to see the history that had landed him into the system now that he was considered a teenager and emotionally capable of knowing the full truth. In a way he counted himself lucky, most of the kids he’d met got a small file with very little information inside of it. Their past as big of a mystery as their future. He, on the hand, learned that his mother had abandoned him willingly and knowingly, and according to the reports had ended up in jail some years after his birth. For some reason it had little effect upon his young mind, the truth just another part of his reality that he took in stride.
School was the only outlet he was allowed for all his teenage angst and he threw it with all his might into academics and sports. Ryker attended 7 different middle schools and high schools throughout his scholastic career and yet his grades never wavered from the top scores and his athleticism was second to none. He kept his nose to the grindstone because he had no other options, no other source of stimulation that intrigued him, that is until his junior year of high school when an Army Officer came to visit his school. Every word the officer spoke somehow called to Ryker, the challenge of going into the service and the endless amount of possibilities that would be at his fingertips in a way that his current life had never allotted him.
As soon as school let out that day Ryker went to the local library and spent the next week researching all branches of the service, from jobs to travel to al the many of circumstances that would be open to him. Among all the branches the Navy called to him in a way that the others didn’t and he followed it up by finding the nearest recruitment center. So set on his new choice was he that the young man managed to take the necessary entrance exams and get his current social worker to sign off on the paperwork in a very short four months. Throwing himself into his studies he managed to graduation high school a full year early and the day after graduation he was on a plane headed for basic training.
For the first time in his life Ryker was in control, in a place of his choosing and despite the grueling 9 weeks of physical, emotional, and intellectual rigors he loved it. Not surprisingly the male excelled at everything that was thrown at him, and for the first time felt as if he were apart of a family. It didn’t matter what walk of life a person came from, once they entered basic they were stripped of everything they had once been, and together were built up to be strong individual warriors. It was little surprise that as basic came to an end he was offered the chance to become a SEAL, one of the most elite positions within the U.S. Military, a special operator that would give him infinite more avenues for travel and expanding his skills and knowledge.
The next few years passed in a blur, Ryker went from a no name orphan to Special Warfare Operator Miles. His team became his family, the brother’s that he had always wanted and would do anything for. They traveled the globe, fighting against the enemies of their home country and making the world a safer place. Life was good, life was brilliant and exciting, if a little dangerous. Still Ryker finally felt content, finally felt like he’d found his place in the grand scheme of things. As with all things though, sometimes when things are at their best, karma and fate join forces to humble the unsuspecting.
Deep in the heart of Iraq, his team was running through an op, extracting a target that had the potential of uncovering a large cell of terrorists, business as usual. The op went smoothly, the prisoner in had they headed for exfil, loading up into jeeps that would carry them back to base. A pair of explosions turned the world into chaos and sent the young Seal spiraling into darkness. Ryker against consciousness at one point, the sound of a chopper a steady thump in his ears. Groaning he tried to rise, a hand pushing his back down as his vision wavered, a thick substance blocking his ability to see. He tried to wipe the blood off, to rise and find his brother's but he got nowhere and slipped into darkness.
A week later he woke up in the hospital, his body bruised and scarred, with not a single idea of what had happened. At first he thought it was just the disorientation of being out for so long and then panic set in, along with a deep and unabating anguish. His Commander relayed the details of what had happened even as his memories slowly resurfaced. An IED went off, shattering his eardrums as both vehicles went spinning end over end into nearby ditches. Despite the pain in his body and the blurry vision and the ache in his head, Ryker grabbed his best friend by the flack jacket and pulled the pair of them from the wreckage. The heat from the fire seared his skin, yet he still went back and pulled three more of his team from the vehicles before passing out.
It took several nurses and a pair of SEAL’s from another team to hold him down as a sedative was pumped into his system. Anyone within earshot would report the following sounds that echoed through the halls were akin to that of a wounded animal, sympathy filling their hearts as the only surviving member of SEAL Team 4 was relayed the fate of his comrades and given the full report of his injuries. As Ryker succumbed to the drugs his heart broke, the only family he had ever known was gone, every male he had counted as brother dead. He felt his eyes blink, could sense the heaviness of his lids as the morphine raced through his blood stream and yet his eyes were useless. The last thought he had before he sank into blissful sleep was the acknowledgement that he was now and forever, irrevocably blind. Blind and once more, alone.
2 weeks later he was standing among a large crowd of mourners, family and friends of the brave men who had died overseas. Unable to put himself apart as the guilt of his survival ate away at his insides, his lack of vision forcing him to depend on others to guide him across the sprawling lawns to the final resting place of the team who had become his first and only family. Never in his young life had he ever felt so alone, felt so wretched, and for the first time he felt some gathering darkness deep within himself that he didn’t quite understand.
Ryker kept in all the rage that was building within him, going through the motions that was his life for the next couple of months. He lived at the local VA, working with several physical therapists to get his body back into shape and train him to work without his sight. His mind was still sharp, braille coming easily to him though the new way of having to walk and get around took a bit longer. He found without his vision his other senses became more enhanced, growing strong to make up for the one that was missing. All the while he could feel something stirring within him, struggling to get out and yet he was unable to put a name to the feeling. Chalking it up to a mixture of guilt, remorse, and slowly building fury that had become his state of being.
Thousands of miles away, in a prison deep in the heart of Louisiana, a woman died of unknown circumstances on the same night a mystery man met a grisly end on the rough streets of Detroit. Ryker woke on that same night in a cold sweat, his body shaking as the unknown energy deep inside him seemed to swell. The power welled up, what had once been dormant was now alive and swiftly rose up to take over. His body shifted, bone and sinew stretching to accommodate the new shape as the moon looked on in mute testament. Where once a young man had stood a huge white stag shook his head, the rack of antlers standing tall and proud as a crown on his head. Scenting the air the supernatural animal caught the scent and took off at a graceful gallop.
Running with preternatural speed the creature subversed thousands of miles in a single night, finding the right location on instinct alone. Sniffing the air the stag could sense where he was supposed to be but not who he was meant to find. The male was here, in the city of Evermore, but had yet to take his true place. Walking through the woods the stag found where the true alpha lived, bedding down just outside the perimeter of trees and let the young man take back possession of his body. Ryker slumped over, exhausted and shaking, cold all over and confused as hell. Unable to pick his head up the male slumped over in the grass, curling in on himself in order to conserve body heat. What was happening to him?
His mind drifted in and out of consciousness, a sensation he was becoming accustomed to as he lay on the ground, scared out of his mind. A voice came to him from out of the dark and then a hand smoothed the hair out of his eyes, “What the hell man? First shift and you have to end up on my doorstep?” Ryker blinked up towards the voice, a small laugh escaping through his chattering teeth, “What’s the matter? You don’t get naked guys ending up in your backyard everyday?”
Together the pair of them chuckled over the joke, as the male who introduced himself as Orion helped heave him up off the ground. After some awkward maneuvering Orion welcomed Ryker into his house, giving him a place to live while he figured out why he was here. As far as the pair of them could tell he was what Orion called a Therian, a shifter of some kind though neither of them knew what. Somehow the male knew he belonged here but why he couldn’t fathom.
So he decided to stay, to figure out the mystery of why he had ended up in Evermore. He found a job as a criminal psychologist at the local police department and stayed with Orion while they tried to find out exactly what he was.
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This guy picked me up off the ground when I arrived on his doorstep, well in his bushes, naked (Yes naked, and he liked it) and confused. Since then he'd been in my corner, helping me figure out exactly what the hell is going on with me and why. I have to hand it to him, Orion is genuine with a heart full of give and enough loyalty to make a SEAL team pause. And I know SEAL teams.
Whatever is going on with me, I know it's all going to work out because I know Orion's got my back.