The Honest Truth


claire2_icon.gif the_haitian_icon.gif kazimir5_icon.gif

Scene Title The Honest Truth
Synopsis Claire doesn't back down when Kazimir tries to send her home.
Date January 05, 2010

USS George Washington

The USS George Washington is like a highly active ant colony, full of every drone that knows its place, knows its job and knows what needs to be done. The last few days have been decidedly busy as helicopter flights on and off the carrier come bringing injured soldiers back from the island of Madagascar. Word has been passing around this morning that two more aircraft carriers have arrived in waters off the shore of the island nation, and with those reinforcements, the USS George Washington may be on the move and departing from Madagascar's national waters for its next mission — whatever that is.

In the crowded halls full of sailors and soldiers, all Claire Bennet wants at the moment is lunch, but that simple fact of morning matter is interrupted on her way down the halls, when two very familiar faces are caught in her periphery. Passing by an unused conference room on the midship deck, Claire has to halt as she sees her uncle standing by the table, arms crossed over his chest, scar so very prominent looking across his face. Perhaps more surprising is the presence of the tall, dark-skinned man standing at the edge of the room, matching postures but not height with Peter, looming over him. They're talking, quiet and conspiratorial tones.

Something's up.

Brought to a halt by the sight of Peter, Claire watches for a long moment, keeping to the far side of the hall, peeking around bodies as they pass. She bites her lip uncertain as to whether she should just continue on or… go in. Decision made, her head turns slowly to look down one direction of the hallway and then the other. The ex-cheerleader, slips through the flow of traffic, much like the playing Frogger.

Leaning against the door jam for a moment longer, watching the pair, before slipping into the conference room. She doesn't go rushing to her uncle, instead she moves to lean against the gunmetal gray wall, waiting for them to notice her. Her expression is schooled into something neutral, almost guarded even though she's really trying not to show how nervous and happy she is seeing her Uncle since… several months ago.

"…that you keep it to yourself. You won't be able to come with me, I'm not sure you'd be able to negate him, and I can't risk Wagner— " Having heard the tail end of something Kazimir was clearly discussing with the Haitian, he halts when the taller man points out Claire in the doorway with a nod. Blue eyes flick over to the blonde, and there's a slowly drawn in breath and a furrow of Kazimir's brows. He looks from Claire to the Haitian, one brow raised, and the taller man nods his head and looks to Claire.

"Please close the door," he states in that thick accent to Claire, motioning to the door near her, and brings his attention back to Kazimir. "If you're certain tha' his ability would not be able to be suppressed, I can stay behind. But Agent Kershner will want to know how you are so sure, how you know all of this."

A silent nod is given as well as a small smile to the dark skinned man, as she uses a foot to push off the wall. Ear on the conversation, Claire closes the door quietly, trying not to draw attention to her till the latch gives a metallic clank. Only then she turn around and close the distance between her and the two older men.

As she approaches, Claire's eyes are on her Uncle, studying the differences in the man that she looks to as a hero. He looks like him, but things about him are off…. Changes. Of course, Claire herself is different, especially with her finding comfort in wearing camo pant, combat boots and tee. The dog tags around her neck, clink softly as she comes around where she can really see Kazimir.

But she doesn't say anything yet, at the moment it isn't time for any sort of formalities, since it looks like the subject is important.

"Claire," Kazimir intones with a stern look to the blonde, "when we disembark at Marion island tomorrow, I want you to stay on the carrier." There's a firm look from the blue-eyed man. "Rene is going to secure you passage back to the US, get you out of here before this mission goes any further. I can't risk putting you in any more danger, especially considering what happened to you. You father," he doesn't clarify which one, "wouldn't ever forgive me if I let something happen to you."

Rene nods his head, looking at Claire with an apologetic expression. "I am going t'take you back to your grandmother, for the time being. It is becoming too dangerous for you here, and since I cannot go with everyone for the final leg of this mission, it is my responsibility to keep you safe."

This is how it happened, flashes through Claire's mind. This is how he dies, she goes home, and then she's not there to protect him, or help him or— whatever it was she saw in that vision.

The look Claire gives to both men, pretty much gives her thoughts without even saying a word, but just to make sure she adds a firm and simple, "No." Blue eyes meet paler ones from across the table, she glares at him defiantly, her chin lifting a bit as if daring him to to fight her on this, cause he won't win this one.

And just in case it wasn't clear enough she adds in calm cold tone, "Not just no, but hell no." Arms cross over her chest, making Dixon's dog tags give a metallic chime.

"Besides, we fail.. one father I don't think would give a crap, since he let me get dropped into hell to look for nukes….. and the other won't ever know cause we'll all be dead. I really don't see where the problem is, " Claire's brows lifts slightly in an expectant way, "Am I wrong?"

"You won't die if we fail," Kazimir explains with a quirk of one brow, "if you're far enough away you'll make it through, even if the waves hit where you are. You're a survivor. If you go where I'm headed, where this ends?" Blue eyes narrow, and there's a shake of his head, followed by a roll of his tongue over this inside of his cheek. "It's not up for debate, you're leaving tomorrow. I'm not putting you in any more danger where you could actually die."

For a moment, Rene considers Kazimir curiously, then looks to Claire and offers her a hesitantly afforded smile. "He is only trying to look out for you. You know what could be coming, Claire, and knowing what I know it would not be safe for you to go with him, the man they are going to face in Antarctica is simply too dangerous for you, for anyone."

"No…" Claire states again firmly to her uncle… then she turns her head to look at Rene and says again, "And No." Hands rest on the table leaning heavily on her hands, hair hanging loose, dog tags swinging lightly. "Look…" She says with a quiet fierceness a fingers stabs at the slick top of the table. "..we've done this little round about before…. sans the ride-a-long." Kazimir is given a flat look. "… and look what happened. There is a crater in New York." She pushes off the table and points at them both, "I will not be shuffled off, by Rene, to my grandmother again."

She holds up two fingers, her her eyes angry, "I died twice.. thinking that this was it.. One was just recently. I've died countless times, I think I can handle one last death." It might sound odd, but it's the truth, "I made my peace with dying back in high school and if I had an doubts…" She shrugs her shoulders, spreading her hands before her, "Well, hell… I think I died more times in Madagascar then my whole life."

She looks her Uncle in those alien blue eyes and says through clenched teeth, her head slowly shaking, 'I will not run from this while my friends.. my family goes to their possible death. If we are burned up in nuclear fire… well, I already know what that feels like." A look goes to the Haitian cause he would remember the incident.

The look that the Haitian and Kazimir share with one another is inscrutable, followed by Rene arching his brows and nodding to Claire in a very what did you expect sort of motion. He straightens up and adjusts his tie, then watches Kazimir for the blue-eyed man's reactions. "This isn't about nuclear fire, or… or anything hurting you, Claire." He's stubborn, just like she is. Offering a wary look to Rene, Kazimir takes a step across the room, one hand pinching the bridge of his nose as he collects his words.

"There is a man waiting in Antarctica named Mikhail Wagner," he turns to regard Claire over his shoulder as he turns around to face her, "he's an ability manipulator, he's… everything that is wrong about the power this body once had, and the one Gabriel has. He picks and chooses abilities from those around him, negates it off of them and then steals it for himself as long as they remain within his blanket of effect, which is enormous. It iwll probably comprise the entire facility he's in by now."

Swallowing tensely, Kazimir furrows his brows and looks down to his hands. "I don't know how powerful Wagner has become, but I can't risk him taking your ability and killing you." Blue eyes level on Claire, anxiety running through him from the tension in his posture.

That actually gives Claire pause, she gives them both a surprised look. "That's why you were talking about negation." She glances between the both of them as she realizes, "Why not tell us right out what's going to happen? Why this secrecy?" A hand finds the back of a chair and pulls it out so that she can sink into it. Being short, she looks like a kid sitting at the big kid's table. Now the young blonde is curious.

"Why exactly can't Rene negate him? Cause the field is so big?"

"Wagner's powerful." Kazimir intones gravely, "I don't know if Rene could stop him, and I don't know how many people Wagner can draw abilities from at one time either. But I don't want to risk Rene's aura of negation being stolen, and crippling all of us." Kazimir moves to sit on the corner of the conference table, hands folded in his lap. "It's been many long years since I last experienced Wagner's ability, and there's no telling what he already has access to. He could even have telepathy on his side." He emphasizes that. intently, but the why is not elaborated on.

"I would rather be cautious than not, it is bad enough that he insists on bringing Sylar to Antarctica." Kazimir shoots Rene a look that implies that bit of info wasn't supposed to be shared. Rene offers a roll of his shoulders, then folds his hands behind his back.

"This isn't going to be safe, Claire. If you want to come, just because you… because you're worried about me," Kazimir shakes his head and looks at Claire intently. "I don't plan on surviving this mission, Claire. If everything is successful, I'll… I'll likely be dead."

Biting hard on her lip, Claire remembers something… something from her time on the ground, but she gets distracted by the mention of Sylar gets a grimace from Claire, "Even after he attacked me in Madagascar? Tried to saw off my skull? He can't be trusted, Peter…. I mean Kazimir." She looks at Rene, "You explained this to him right?" She asks the question even though she probably knows the answer. "The man is too dangerous to take."

"As for Wagner…. What… about - - and I can't believe I'm saying this - - The negation gas grenades?" Claire asks the question simply, watching the reaction of both men, leaning forward to rest her arms on the table. It's one of those images stamped in her brain.. that damn oily green gas. "Rasoul was stock piling that stuff right?" She's never really been good at the ideas stuff, so she asks the question cautiously, hoping that the question isn't too naive.

Negation gas grenades, all of that, nothing registered on Kazimir's face except for anger. Dark brows furrow, his blue eyes go wide, and an accusing stare goes towards Rene. "What happened to her?" He's up form the table, pushing past Claire and stalking at Rene with a click-clack of his hard-soled shoes on the polished floor. "Why didn't you tell me!?" Rene reaches out with one hand, moving to rest it on Kazimir's shoulder, but the blue-eyed man swats it aside in a fit of frustration.

"Look a'yourself." Rene states flatly, his dark eyes not baking down a moment from the man that nearly killed him in Texas. "Look at why a'did not tell you." Kazimir hesitates, eyes widening a touch, and he recalls his argument with Gillian, about emotions and how they get in the way. He backs down in that silence, shoulders raised and gloved hands curled into leather-creaking fists.

Kazimir shoots a look back to Claire, icy in its quality, as if he blames her somehow for the outburst. "I need him," he insists, "he's coming and you're going home." There's a curl of Kazimir's upper lip curls and he looks back over his shoulder to Rene.

"Take her home." He demands with a point of one finger, as if somehow the Haitian would actually listen. "I need to go find Gabriel and have a talk with him." Blue eyes narrow to slits, and the rage boiling inside of Kazimir is tempered by very little, perhaps only his stillness.

Rene watches the younger man with uncertainty, then looks to Claire, wordlessly as his mute persona had always seemed. Maybe he hopes she can defuse this where he failed.

Hands slap hard on the table, and Claire stands slowly, her voice is quiet, "I… am not going home. There is a reason I was sent here. I wasn't kidnapped and made to be here. I was given paperwork… I was expected for some reason." She reaches out to grab at the hand that is point at her, and make Kazimir look at her, "I saw what those people did with what the real Kazimir made.. Rasoul.. was a sick and twisted man. He treated you like you were a messiah. The things they did to those people… It makes Humanis First look like kids playing in a sand box. I will see this to the end. I will help bring down what little bit of Vangaurd is left. "

She quickly let's go of the hand and holds up both for stall him from saying anything. "As for Gabriel… Fine.. he goes along. But he's dangerous…. I won't be caught alone again. Others will keep me safe from him," Claire looks her uncle in the eye, as if searching for something, a small hint of a smile on her lips, "By the look of it, you won't let him near me either." Should make it easer to stick near him.

"Gabriel aside though, Pete…. Kazimir… Negation gas. Rasoul's favorite play thing. Haitian in a can." Claire mentions it again hopefully to draw his attention from Gabriel.. "I have a canister of it still.. I won't bet on it, but if we contact Huruma… Maybe she can talk to Dajan and get us more." Blue eyes move quickly between them both. "It might not fix it all, but it might buy us time."

Blue eyes narrow when Kazimir comes to a stop near the door, turning around and offering a sharp look to Claire, and then over to Rene. There's a sigh that slips out from his nostrils, gloved hand coming up to pinch at the bridge of his nose, and he beathes out a tired sigh afterward. Kazimir looks to Rene and then Claire, "You're just like your father…" he admits without clarifying which one, but Claire has a pretty good idea he means Nathan. "Fine, but you're sticking close to Richard and he is to not let you out of his sight." Why he trusts Cardinal so much, is a strange thing. "Do you understand?"

Rene offers a faint smile when Claire manages to talk Kazimir down some. The tall man moves close and rests a reassuring hand on Claire's shoulder. "While you are on this ship, I will keep an eye out for you. You need not fear Sylar." He refuses to call him Gabriel, for good reason. "As for you," he looks up to Kazimir, watching him carefully for a moment. "Be careful."

Kazimir offers a hesitant smile, then smooths it out as he backs towards the door and turns without so much as a word of goodbye to either, stepping out into the hall. Claire had a good point about the negation gas, and he let is breeze by. Odds are, it would seem, he's keeping that part of his plan close to his chest.

There is no hiding that smug little smirk of triumph on Claire's lips, arms crossing across her chest. She hadn't backed down this time and she wasn't going too, even if she had to find a way to sneak there… she was going to go. This option was much easier, of course. Though she imagines Cardinal, might not be happy playing babysitter.

Once her uncle is out of the room, Claire's smirk falls away into a look of worry and concern, which she turns to The Haitian. "He's different cause of that thing… but Peter is in there."

A soft smile is given as she says to the man that's been there for her many times, "It's good to see you again, Rene. I'm sorry it's always got to be when works got to be done."

Looking down to Claire, the Haitian offers a hesitant smile as he hears her apology. "Peter is gone," he says with a strange tone of voice, "put that in your mind an' push everything else away." Those black eyes of his narrow, watching her carefully. "If you love your uncle, you will never think that Peter is alive, never think anything other than that Kazimir Volken is in charge."

Like always, his words contain something hidden, a truth contained behind a more obvious skin. "Keep that in mind," he offers to her as he starts to walk away to follow Kazimir out of the room, "and you will do more than you know for him."

Confusion… that's what Claire feels at The Haitian's words, blonde brows drop low as she's left to stand there to work out the cryptic meaning. "Alright…" The young woman doesn't like it, but…. ".. We'll do it your way." Easier said then done really, since that little display tells her otherwise.

Giving a firm nod, Claire moves to leave as well, though her path will take her in a different direction. Lunch could wait, she needed to talk to Richard… if she could find him.

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