Then Pharaoh Called

Participants:

amato_icon.gif felix_icon.gif judah_icon.gif kaydence_icon.gif

Scene Title Then Pharaoh Called
Synopsis Felix and Judah, having pinpointed Kaydence's location, arrive at Sea View Hospital with the intention of bringing her back home. As usual, things do not go entirely according to plan.
Date October 16, 2008

Sea View Hospital


For days now, Kaydence Damaris' world has consisted of terrifyingly cryptic words on a crumbling wall, the creaks and moans of a decaying structure, and a lone, unseen captor. Amato has done his best to feed Kaydence, mostly with random spoons of his own canned food - just enough to keep her alive - but heaven only knows where those tin corpses lie in the age-old mess that carpets the floor.

There was a time when Sea View Hospital was known for it's Terra cotta murals. They are, in a way, the last crowning jewel of the abandoned mental hospital's fourth floor women's ward. The room is taller than the others, and lit by windows on the opposite wall. It is here, in one of her bouts of sleep during which her hood was replaced, that Amato has moved the ancient wheel-chair to which the detective is bound. How long she's been here is hard to tell - it's night when Amato removes the hood, but the moon and starlight cast enough of a glow on the wall to light up the Terra cotta tableaus.

Crows croak out a cacophonous cawing - an alarm to alert Amato of antagonists. Careful to keep out of sight of the rousing Kaydence, the tall man in black, save for his red scarf, pale skin, and blonde hair, leaves his prisoner in order to avoid capture himself. Who knows who it is - bums looking for a place to sleep out of the wind? Evolved looking for a place to hide? Random teenagers looking for a bit of autumnal fun? Regardless, Amato doesn't want to be around if and when they get to the fourth floor.

And Amato is banking on that if.

Sea View has seen better days. Rust coats anything metal. Asbestos undoubtedly floats in the air in minute particles. Though he is as quick as he can be, Amato's escape out the relative back-end of the abandoned building is slow-going on the upper levels, where wooden floors are rotted to dangerous degrees and broken glass litters the floor, waiting for some hapless victim to slip and and expose themselves to teatnus or some other nefarious infection.

When consciousness finally returns to Kaydence Lee, she's alone. It's dark, or so her surroundings would indicate, and the hood is no longer on her head. It often isn't when she's been left to herself. She swallows back the lump in her throat that always forms when she realizes she didn't simply fall asleep in her late husband's recliner, and that she's still in Hell. She takes in a deep breath and she calls out in an attempt to drown out the crows.

"HELLO?!"

"HELLO!!!"

Kay's voice is hoarse and scratchy, suggesting she's done this a few times before. Someone's got to come eventually, right? A little shouting is at least enough to give her hope.

Oh, Amato, such hurried work. Haste makes waste, you know, and one 'demon' is left alive. Fel's up and on his feet again, with Judah. And one of the nice things about working for the Bureau is the wonderful toys you can buy, requisition, or 'borrow'. So, the cop and the Fed aren't using the flashlights they've brought. Not when there are perfectly good night vision goggles to be used. He's abandoned his usual tailored suit in favor of what's basically SWAT gear - fatigue pants, t-shirt, jump boots, and a bulletproof vest, though one without either the NYPD or FBI blazons. It's not a hundred percent legit mission they're on, after all. And while his pistol rides at his waist, he's got a shotgun cradled in the crook of his arm. AT the moment, despite his attempt to keep his tread quiet, he's crunching over the glass debris on the ground floor, leading the way. The distant voice has him pausing and signalling to Judah with his hand, pointing up. But he doesn't call back to her, or speak aloud - the motion upstairs is followed by a handsignal for 'trap?'

Judah is dressed similarly to Felix, with the addition of a thick pair of leather gloves. This isn't his first visit to Sea View — many years ago, when his was still a rookie, he helped a search team uncover the body of a missing toddler that was stashed in a shallow grave by her father after a custody battle between her parents turned sour. He knows that this is treacherous terrain, and he wants to be prepared if he's going to be picking through old pieces of insulation, rusted metal and broken glass. At his companion's signal, he tilts his head, listening for any signs that he, Felix and Damaris might not be alone in this twisted labyrinth of urban decay. Hearing nothing, the detective shrugs his shoulders and begins to press on. Trap or no trap, they don't have much of a choice.

Not one to be daunted, as long as she's left with the allowance to speak, Kay's going to milk it for all it's worth. "Hello!" Her voice may be more subdued after the first two shouts, but she'll keep on until someone hears her - or someone stops her. "Is somebody there?! Hello!" She slumps in the wheelchair. She wants to cry, but she won't allow herself to. If that awful man comes back, she just can't give him the satisfaction.

Definitely the sound of someone there. Fel grins to himself, though it's barely visible in what little moonlight comes in through the ruined windows, and picks up his pace to a trot. At least until he comes to the stairs, where he slows to test it tread by tread, lest he summarily crash through. But he's still hurrying as fast as he dares, everything rendered in silvery green by the night vision lenses. Once he's up a couple flights, he leans over the edge of the stairwell, carefully, and waves Judah after him.

Judah follows in Felix's footsteps. It's just as well that the other man go first — he's slightly lighter and leaner than Demsky is, and so stands a better chance of reaching Kaydence before calamity befalls him. Although the stairs are concrete, he's mindful not to place his feet anywhere near the cracks that lace the structure. Anything, given enough time and exposure to the elements, is capable of crumbling under the right amount of weight. Judah can only hope that he doesn't tip the scale. Thirty seconds later, he's caught up with Felix, and is standing on the uppermost step with the strap of his rifle pulled taut across his well-muscled chest. "You want to say something?" There are only so many things that hand signals are good for. This question isn't one of them. "If she keeps up that racket, she's only going to attract unwanted attention. Assuming she hasn't already."

As it is, the crows have not ceased their racket. It is as if they're enjoying this contest with Kaydence. But it only lasts a few moments more before the sound of countless wings buffeting against the still night air fill the echoey chambers of the hospital as all those dark carrion bird simultaneously shift from the eaves to nearby branches. Once they have found their new perches, they fall eerily silent.

The Fed is by far the slighter of the two men, but the stairs do seem steady enough for the both of them. There's the distinct, steely note of Felix racking the slide on his shotgun. A little 'Hello there' that echoes down the dusty halls. "Yeah," he says, before raising his voice to a bellow, "Kaydence. Hold on. We're coming," And then he's up the stairs as fast as he dares go.

"Felix?!" Kay almost isn't sure she heard it. She barely did over the sounds of her own screaming. "The birds! I don't know what they mean, but— " But she isn't sure if that means Amato is back, or something worse. "… Who the fuck is we?!" Leave it to Damaris to bypass the important things and nitpick the minor details. He'd better not have brought in a slew of Feds. She looks like shit! Well, she feels like shit, so it only stands to reason…

Judah doesn't immediately follow Felix this time. If the floors are as rotted as they were the last time he was here, he doesn't want to risk endangering Kaydence more than he already has — he trusts Felix to handle it. Instead, he shifts his rifle from his back to his arms and begins moving toward the distant sound of wingbeats. Based on the grisly scene Amato and Kazimir left them at Briarwood, he has a pretty good idea about what the birds mean. Dark eyes squint behind the material of his night vision goggles, as sharp as they are fierce. If there's anyone lurking in the shadows of the second floor, he'll find them.

The only things that lurk on the second floor are the vermin who infest this place as thickly as the bacteria and other microbial villains. Amato is moving with purpose. He can't disguise his footsteps, as much as he may try, but he has a good lead on Judah as far as making it to the final flight of stairs. At the bottom of it is a stack of rusty beds, piled long ago, probably when there were still some semblance of linens on the efficient, spring-laden frames.

Not a slew of Feds. Or a pack. Or a harassment. Whatever the collective noun for the Feebs is. Just the one. He swarms up the stairs and towards the sound of Kaydence's voice, clearing the rooms one by one. A place of healing, now left to dust and decay. And then he's at her side, letting the shotgun dangle from where it's cradled in the crook of an elbow as he hastens to unfasten her. He doesn't remove the goggles, so it's a rather eerie and robotic version of the face he knows. "Found her!" he calls, even as he works at her bonds.

"He's got me tied up to a fucking wheelchair!" Kaydence tugs at the restraints, despite the duct tape having already cut into her arms, dried blood on her skin and the edges of the adhesive. Then, there's Felix. Finally. And suddenly… Kay's at a loss for words. All she can manage is a surprised and relieved huff of air.

Amato's footsteps drive Judah on, his pace changing from a cautious crawl to a brisk trot before he finally breaks into a full-out sprint. This is the closest he's been to apprehending a suspect in the Marshall case, so close that he can almost taste an arrest the same way he can taste the staleness in the air — that pungent note of decomposition lingering in the hospital's decrepit interior. "FREEZE!"

The first floor, in one of the rooms that was undoubtedly used when Sea View was a center for tuberculosis treatment: Amato stands at the far end, near a line of broken out windows that at one point might have cheered the space and its inhabitants. Outside, the birds shift in agitation.

"Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron in haste; and he said, I have sinned against the Lord your God, and against you." Amato's voice is clam and smooth, but it carries the same liquid-like Spanish accent it did when Amato made his fateful phone call.

"Hello, Detective Demsky."

"Are you hurt?" Felix demands, voice low, so he can still hear any response of Judah's. "Demsky, report," he shouts, raising only echoes, bouncing off the tiled walls. While he doesn't make use of his preternatural speed, it's only moments before Kaydence is unbound. "Can you walk?" he wonders of her.

"I can fly," Kay responds bitterly, that stubborn streak of hers a mile wide as she shakily climbs to her feet. Her hair's matted to the back of her neck and the side of her face from dried sweat and having that blasted hood taped shut. "Give me a gun." It isn't a request. She feels naked without her sidearm. "Demsky's here?" That actually draws a smile from the downtrodden detective. "I owe that man a case of soda." When she hears Judah's voice shouting, she straightens up. "Give me a gun and let's go!"

Judah comes to a stop, his tall, foreboding shape silhouetted in the door frame. He points his rifle at Amato and aims for the left side of his chest — right above the heart. There's only one reason he doesn't level it with his head: the target area is smaller, and so he stands a greater chance of missing. Although the detective's finger tightens around the trigger, he does not pull it. Yet. "Get on the floor."

"If you plan on taking me in alive, as I'm sure is the goal in order to subject me to the court system, then perhaps it would be better if I remained standing, considering the particular floor you wish for me to 'get on.'" There is a hint of a mile in Amato's words, and as he speaks, he lifts his gloved hands above his head. "But I promise I will not move, so that you can come and cuff me. I have no weapon."

Fel doesn't argue with her. It's already very unorthodox and against procedure….so he merely pulls his pistol from its holster, reverses the grip, and hands it to her. "My father gave me that at graduation from police academy. Anything happens to it, I'll flay you. Eight in the mag, one in the chamber," he says, with that manic fox's grin, before bending to kiss her cheek. "And Demsky is here, yes," he adds. He does not, however, wait for her. She's armed, she can follow at her own pace. He is, abruptly, a fleeting blur, the sound of his running footsteps slurred together into a rapid tattoo as he bolts back down the stairs to come up behind Judah.

The kiss actually stuns Kay enough to pause and blink. Not what she was expecting. It causes her to lag behind considerably. Not that she can move anywhere near as fast as her FBI counterpart in the first place, but he definitely has a head start on him. "Save that fucking nutjob for me," the woman screams down the stairs.

Judah has three options laid out in front of him. One: He can give in to his vindictive side and shoot Amato now, disposing of the body in some dark corner of Sea View where no one — not even the authorities — will find it. Two: He can brave the distance between them and attempt to take him into custody alive. Three: He can let him go.

It doesn't take him long to settle on what he feels is the best option. Putting one foot in front of the other, he begins to make his way across the room toward Amato without taking his gaze off him. "Get down on the floor," he says again, his voice hard and low, "I'm not going to give you another warning—"

With a thunderous crack that sends the crows outside into the air with a dissonant symphony of caws, the floor gives way when the detective is less than halfway across it. Judah was, it seems, that final straw, that last bit of weight that the rotting would could stand. Amato is only lucky, or in his view, blessed, that he is so much thinner than the lawman. There is a moment when Judah is falling, then there is only a heavy cloud of dust in the air. The glass, and refuse that had littered the floor splash into what would amount to waist-deep water in a concrete basement tunnel, had Judah been walking through it rather than unceremoniously dumped.

In the chaos of splintered wood, obscuring dust, and cawing crows, Amato dives out of the window and rolls onto the grass outside before regaining his feet and sprinting off into the vast and murky wilderness of the Staten Island Greenbelt.

There's the thundering report of the shotgun. Luckily for Amato, Fel's loaded under the assumption he'd have to kill flocks of birds tonight, rather than humans. And Kay has his pistol. So there's a spray of birdshot - messy, spattering Amato's shoulder with blood, but far from fatal or disabling. He'll leave blood spoor, but that's all. Then the shotgun is cast aside as Fel seeks a way down to Judah, swearing furiously in Russian under his breath.

It's hard to miss the sound of floor falling away beneath someone's feet. "Jude!" Kay shrieks and picks up the pace, barreling down the stairs as fast as her stiff and weak body can manage. "Go after the freak show," she hollers at Felix. "You might fall through the fucking floor, too!" Frantically, she makes for the basement so she can slog her way toward her fallen partner.

But freak show is long gone, and even if Felix were to run after him, he'd be running through personally uncharted territory.

Heisenberg had a saying about that sort of thing.

Amato is hit, yes, but all he does his wince as he holds a gloved hand over his shoulder wound in order to keep pressure on it as he runs to safety.

"Demsky?" Felix yells, even as he swings down from one floor to the next, actually daring to turn on a flashlight, only to be dazzled by the glint of light off water. «Oh, shit,» he says, in his native tongue, but drops down into it, nonetheless. Judah's not responding, and you can drown in three inches of water if you're unlucky. There's a splash. Fel is, perhaps, braver than he is smart. But he splashes around until he comes up Judah, and immediately hauls him upright enough to get his face out of the water…


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October 16th: Lucidity
Previously in this storyline…
Lucidity

Next in this storyline…
Bedside Manner

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October 16th: So Little Time
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