Domino

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Scene Title Domino
Synopsis One method of playing with dominos is to line them all up, so that they can all be knocked down at once.
Date March 13, 2009

Czech Republic, Prague — St Nicholas Cathedral


There’s an irony in the notion of a barbarous man seeking absolution. By definition, the bloodthirsty and the murderous are beyond redemption, but it is usually the guilty who look towards a higher power in the end, to find some form of salvation, in the fear that perhaps if their lives end, they would like to go on to someplace better.

The sunlight filtered through the stained glass windows flanking a row of pews shines down on one such man, hands clasps before himself in silent prayer, head bowed. Adam Monroe is not a pious man, never was, never will be. But times are changing, and the world around this dangerous man is slowly beginning to become something less predictable and more chaotic. There is some familiarity and stability in these hollow prayers that have not changed since times even older than he.

While the church is mostly emptied this afternoon, a single figure remains standing at the far back by the open double doors that lead out to the sun dappled cobblestone streets beyond. With his hands clasped in front of himself, shoulders squared and head held high, Roger Goodman looks out of place in the halls of the pious, just as much as Monroe does here to him.

“I did not take you for a man of faith, Mister Monroe.” His deep voice rings as hollow as Adam’s prayers through the cathedral, his curt tone resonating off of the ancient stone walls. Adam’s prayer’s stop mid-verse, head shaking slowly as a rueful smile creeps across lips once feigning reverence.

“It’s been a long time, old chap.” Craning his neck to look over his shoulder, Adam’s pale eyes settle on Roger’s dark silhouette as it slowly begins to move from by the doorway, dress shoes giving loud report against the marble floor. “Come to seal the ol’ deal, then? Bring me back to my cage, turn the key and forget for another forty years?”

Roger gives no immediate reply, strolling up to stand silently at Adam’s side, looking down to the man kneeling behind the pew. His dark eyes assess the blonde Englishman, and Roger’s posture relaxes as his hands come to fold behind his back. “No,” he states flatly, “I wasn’t around back then to make that decision, and I haven’t been charged with that task now.”

Adam’s hands unfold, and he rises up from his knees to sit on the pew, forearms resting over his knees, brow tensed. “Then,” his tongue darts out over dry lips, “are you here from Him?” Monroe’s chin tilts up, nose directing towards the ceiling.

The immediate scoffing sound from Roger accompanies a shake of his head, weight shifting as he begins to walk a few paces beyond Adam’s pew. “I do come as an emissary, Mister Monroe, but not a heavenly one – I think you and I both know that.” Regarding the enormous cross suspending a representation of Jesus, Roger’s tone changes.

“There’s a lot of irony in this room,” he motions to the cross in the same way Adam had to the ceiling. “Thou shalt worship no graven images before me,” he quotes. Not typically a man for scripture, but there’s a point to it all.

“You’re talking theology with the wrong man, Goody ol’ pal,” Adam misses it, for the moment.

“Even the divine laws are eventually interpreted, rewritten and changed with the times.” Goodman finally turns, casting his back to the cross, dark eyes once more settling on Adam. “The Company could learn a lot from Christianity. Perhaps it has in the ideal of revisionist history – but not where it matters.

Now, he has Adam’s attention.

Pacing back to stand beside Monroe again, Roger reaches out to rest one dark hand on the corner of a pew, settling some of his weight on it as he leans down to regard Adam more closely. “Primatech refuses to change, to adapt, to evolve.

His choice of wording carefully chosen, Goodman’s eyes lock with Adam’s, and the weight of age behind the immortal’s stare is readily apparent. Enough so, that Goodman breaks the stare, straightening out once more to return to familiar posture and more comfortable footing.

“What’s this got to do with me, chap? I don’t reckon you came all the way out here just to commiserate about bad job choices,” Adam begins to stand, hands sliding into the pockets of his slacks. “An’ I sincerely doubt that ol’ Bob Bishop sent you down here to give me amnesty. So if you’re not here for any of that,” he steps past Roger, out into the aisle, regarding the taller man with a sidelong stare, “and you’re not here to drag me back kicking and screaming…” one brow rises, expectantly.

“Arthur Petrelli is alive.” Roger Goodman’s words strike through Adam’s heart like a thousand blades, a cruelest cut that no immortality he possesses could conceivably heal. He feels his stomach sink, shoulders slouch and mouth hang open, “He’s been looking for you.”

Immediately looking away, Adam steps away from Goodman in a staggering gait, head shaking back and forth as his mind reels to cope with this paradigm shift. When he was locked up forty years ago, Arthur was alive and free, and he’d heard word of his passing while incarcerated – it was mildly relieving.

Watching Adam’s theatrics, Roger pivots in place, head swiveling with the predatory stare of a hawk, head ever so subtly tilting to one side more than the other. “He would like to procure your services again, Adam. Like in the beginning.

“No.” It’s a flat-out and hastily spat answer, and one of Adam’s hands flies out of his pockets to wave in Goodman’s direction, as if the gesture was some somatic component to a spell aimed to dismiss the notion entirely. “No,” he burbles out, “I know what he wants me for, an’ he can’t have it!”

For the first time in a very long time, fear dawns over Adam’s face – fear of his own mortality. It’s as thrilling as it is terrifying.

“If he wanted to steal your ability, Adam, he would not have sent me.” There’s a ghost of an ivory-white smile across Goodman’s face as he watches Adam’s panic. “There’s another, more desirable, more important figure that he plans on taking the ability of… you’re no use to him dead.

Brows knitting together, Adam is struck silent by the notion, his tongue darting across his lips again while his head tilts to the side once more. “I—“ Adam’s shoulders tense, teeth worrying over his lower lip before he approaches Roger with a few uncertain steps. “Why? It’s not like Roger and I were the best of friends back in the day. He and I didn’t exactly see eye to eye with most of my plans.”

Nodding in agreement, Roger offers his own consideration, “Your plans were carried out already, if the chaos of the last several months is any indication. Kazimir Volken – your disciple – already tried Shanti’s hand, and he was stopped.”

Sauerkraut wasn’t my disciple.” Adam strains the notion out through his teeth, “Boy had a good head on his shoulders, but in the end he was nuttier than a Snickers bar.” Leaning back, eyes scanning Roger up and down, Adam takes a moment to reconsider things in spite of those events.

“What exactly does Arthur need with me?” Some of the venom, some of the distrust begins to fade. Roger nods quietly, reaching inside of his jacket to retrieve a gunmetal blackberry from his breast pocket, turning it on with a brush of his thumb, and two taps of the screen pulls up a single image concealed against his palm.

As he holds the blackberry screen up to face Adam, his words take on yet another tone. “This isn’t so much about what Arthur needs, so much as it is about a common enemy you both share.

Adam’s eyes grow wide, then narrow as he leans towards the display, one brow raising in suspicion as he peers at the well-dressed and elderly Japanese man depicted in the photograph – Kaito Nakamura. “I believe, Mister Monroe, you and he have some unfinished business?”

Adam’s cold eyes lift up from the screen, and all of his snark and sarcasm bleed away to something more mechanical, something more coldly efficient.

“Where do I sign up?”


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March 13th: The Perfect Date
Previously in this storyline…
Only A Bad Girl Lies

Next in this storyline…
Go Home

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March 13th: Under the Covers
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