Tamlin has an unexpected meeting with her father in light of the arrest of Beckham's father.
Location: Dorn Estate - Caprica
Related Scenes: None
Scene Number: 550
Three months ago, the news broke - Caprica News showed footage of several clinics shut down, seized by the government, and two major hospital chains. What did they all have in common? They were owned by the Niles family. The charges against Constantine Niles were dire - defrauding the government, wire fraud, insurance forgery.. several hundred counts of each. The call for justice was swift and loud.
In those first weeks after the arrest, Beckham kept a steady stream of communication with his secret wife, even as Morten Dorn postponed the 'wedding' indefinitely, the two of them had already eloped and married. But as the trial was over and Doctor Niles was found guilty, Tamlin's father had forbidden her contact with any member of the Niles family, and even when she left the house for school, she had a chaperone, even if Beckham was no longer attending.
Morning comes with a breaking news report that the punishment against Doctor Niles was about to be metted out. The TVs in the kitchen and living room of the Dorn home are set to the coverage, even as servants are preparing breakfast for Tamlin as she's preparing for school.
Tamlin's phone - the one her father doesn't know about buzzes with a message.
The wedding was secret, and sweet, the pair running off for a weekend trip to a resort on the Caprican shore, a spontaneous expression of devotion that felt just felt right, and proper, and not at all in, line with the timeline set out by their families. They should have been on cloud nine, and, as only newlyweds can be, they were.
A long way to fall. The news broke and suddenly there was the world before, the world with Beckham in her life, and the world after, when seeing him, speaking to him, touching him was nearly an impossibility. The world where the only comfort she might have in a day, a week might be the simple gold band she'd worn for only two brief days, before she slipped it on to a chain around her neck, the occasional text message. Her absolutely steadfast belief that he couldn't possibly have anything to do with his parents criminal activities.
Breakfast, almost an untenable situation, in the last few months, but Tamlin isn't interested in the food, nor drink, as she sits and watches the news coverage. The slight vibration in her bag brings her head around, and she scrambles for the phone, heart hammering. Eyes skim the words of the message, before she looks around, ensuring that the staff are not around, before she answers.
As she's putting the phone away, the kitchen doors open, and Morten Dorn makes his way into dining room. "Tamlin, good morning." he greets his daughter with a terse kiss to her temple, as he carries a small brown envelope, the type one carries files in as he sits down across from her. "We're going to have a talk. On your future." he says, opening the envelope.
Spilling out the contents, there are several photos of Tamlin and Beckham and their secret rendezvous in the months since the arrest, and at the bottom, a copy of their marriage certificate. "You are only seventeen years old. How long have you and he been together?" the last word has a hint of disgust, that this rabble, the criminal scum would dare to deflower his precious daughter, much less soil her in other ways.
His hands fold over each other. "I have our lawyer drawing up the annulment paperwork. You will sign it. You will forget this boy. And you will go back to the life we have for you. In a few months, when this situation has blown over, I will find you someone suitable to court, and you will make no mention to him of this illicit liaison."
Tamlin only just manages to hide the phone, as her father walks in, and she puts on the bland expression that's been plastered on her face as an almost permanent fixture, "Good morning, Father." Never Dad, and not Daddy since she was about four or five and she was schooled to address him properly. "I have my audition today. Can't it wait? I still need to practice."
Her eyes fall to the paperwork as it spills out across the breakfast table, her expression tightening, not in pain or shame, as she sees the pictures of herself, but with longing, as she sees her memories of Beckham caught on a private investigator's camera. A slim hand reaches out, pulling one of the pictures, then another, and another, until the marriage license, the signatures still looking as fresh as the day they both penned their names, barely a week after Tamlin turned seventeen and became legally an 'adult'. Her eyes narrow, as she looks up at her father, pushing back her chair and coming to her feet, "Since the night of the cotillion." He already knows the answer, wasn't it he who sent Constantine Niles to find her? So why lie?
And now there's colour rising in her cheeks, "I won't sign that! I won't! Beckham hasn't done anything wrong, he doesn't have anything to do with his parents." She shakes her head, still vehement, "I have a husband. I won't have anyone else."
Because he wanted to hear it from her, that's why. Morten snorts gently, watching her anger. "Then he has been taking advantage of you for almost a year." he says simply, pointing that out as he frowns. "What that boy did to you was take advantage of a young girl's virtues that didn't know better - and if I have to, I will have a doctor prove that you did not have the mental capacity to agree to this marriage - or consent to his advances." His finger presses down on the table.
"If you truly love your family, you know this is the right thing. Everyone makes one grand mistake in their lives. This... boy.. is yours." he says, putting his finger on a picture of Tamlin and Beckham cuddled up on a bench in the park, clearly in love with each other. "He's taken advantage of you for long enough to secure our family's favor. Even now, he has asked for help from me from our lawyers for his father." The elder Dorn seems to be keeping nothing back. "I am willing to help him, Tamlin. As a favor to you. However, you will renounce him - and you will live the life your mother and I have groomed you for!" His fist suddenly slams down on the heavy oaken table.
"And if you do not agree to it? Everyone has their price, Tamlin." he says, lifting his eyes to meet hers. "Even him. And considering what situation he's in at the moment? I can probably buy his agreement for next to nothing to recoup at least some of my losses in this foolish folly and venture."
Tamlin's face pales, the young woman looking ill, as Morten speaks, each word more horrible than the next. Terrible, awful words that seem determined to make something absolutely beautiful and precious, dirty and debased, "He didn't. We love each other, and we haven't done anything wrong."
At the mere mention of Beckham being a mistake, Tamlin shakes her head vehemently, "This doesn't have anything to do with how I feel about my family, this is all you, Father! You wanting to control every hour and every aspect of my life. I won't do it." Tamlin barely flinches, as her father vents his anger. She's seen it enough that it doesn't have the power it once did when she was a child. "I won't sign it, and even if I did, he would refuse to accept it, he would never agree to it." She's that sure. Her eyes narrow as her father intimates that Beckham could be bought, "Fine, ask him then, you'll see. He won't take your money." She's that sure.
"He will. I already have my lawyer reaching out to him, Tamlin." Morten intones. There may be anger there, but it's the calm assurance that's beneath that should truly scare her. "I doubt I'll have to even go over 50,000 cubits to secure his agreement." the old man says as he rises from the table. "You can go to your recital. But Jacobs will be with you as your shadow. The press does not need to learn of your liaisons with the Niles family." he points out as he moves to rise from the table to leave her alone. However, before he does, he gestures to her purse. "I will have your phone." he says simply.
"There is nothing that you have that I'm not already aware of. I am disappointed in you, Tamlin." But he makes no mention of her marrying Beckham. Just that it will be corrected. After all, were it not for this news, the marriage between Tamlin and Beckham was only a few months off anyway, a way to secure them before they headed off to college.
"I forgive you, though. And as I said.. in a few months, you won't even remember his name, and we will find you someone worthy of your hand in marriage." Unless of course, she does something like run off and join the military.
With all the surety of seventeen, Tamlin responds to her father's assurances with only a hateful look and a shake of her head, "He won't. I promise you that he won't. Beckham loves me." She almost relaxes, as he makes to depart the room. She can manage Jacobs. She's done it before. And when he asks for her phone, she look momentarily rebellious. But she knows that road. It will just lead to her being held by her father's security while he takes it anyway. And it isn't as if she can't get another one. She reaches into the bag and pulls out the small phone, handing it over.
"I don't need your forgiveness, Father. I never wanted it. All I ever wanted was for you to love me for me. To love me and to support the choices I made in my life."
"I do love you, Tamlin. I'm doing this out of my love. All his type does is use. I am only grateful we discovered it now and before there was a larger mistake." The type that takes nine months to come to light. Morten frowns as he looks to his daughter. "Your whole life has been about making the right choices so that you will be happy. And I know best that in this case.. you may be sad right now? But someday, you will not remember this as a day where I upset you. But as the day I saved you."
He looks down at the phone - one missed message. He punches at a few buttons, setting up a meeting between 'Tamlin' and Beckham - but it will be the lawyer waiting for Beckham at the restaurant.
Tamlin, still standing, can only stare at her father, as he lays out his idea of love, of caring for his daughter. At the comment about a larger mistake, her hand moves unbidden to her stomach, the possibility of it never even entering her mind until this moment. She's never missed a dose of her medication. But she has been unable to eat most mornings; the smell, even the sight of food all but gagging her. Surely it's only been worry, and tension, and the pain of this forced separation. Hasn't it? "No, you've made all of these choices so that you can be happy." She reaches out for the phone as she sees him begin to answer the message, but he manages to finish and slip the phone into a pocket even before she can get around the table. "If you do this, Father, you will lose me. And you will never get me back."
"You don't understand what you're doing, so I'm taking care of it for you, Tamlin. And once you have had a chance to calm down, you will see I'm right. How about you just stay in today. You haven't been eating well, I can call the family doctor to come check you." Morten says firmly, grounding the girl to the house for the day, before he moves to leave the room.
Tamlin was only just about to reach for her purse, to try to escape and not only to see, but to warn Beckham of her father's plans. But Morten's decision to ban her from departing the compound, and worse, to call the doctor, essentially ensuring that she will never make that last meeting at the conservatory. "You'll never be right."
Morten pauses at the door, looking down for a moment, and then back to her. It's not anger in his eyes. It's sadness. That she doesn't understand how the world works. That her husband will bend. Will break. He just needs to apply the right pressure. "We shall see, Tamlin." he says finally, moving to close the doors behind him and leave her with Jacobs, and breakfast, untouched.