Unenlisted Company


claire3_icon.gif veronica2_icon.gif

Scene Title Unenlisted Company
Synopsis Claire and Veronica meet for the first time, and the Company agent is told about what they face.
Date January 08, 2010

USS George Washington

The mess hall on a large ship is almost never empty. People are always getting off shifts at odd times for meals, but still need to eat. When Veronica enters the hall, there are a handful of sailors here and there in clusters of twos and threes, but no one from their operation, or at least none that she knows.

The Company agent goes to gather a tray, gathering a chicken salad, a bottle of water, and a brownie before returning to one of the tables to eat in presumed isolation. There are a couple of glances from those sailors who actually run the day to day operations of the vessel, and she gives a nod of acknowledgment before beginning to eat.

On order… no demand… wait… threat of action from her boss Cardinal, Claire slides a tray down the line, looking over the food with an expression of disgust. A bottle of water goes on the tray, a little bowl of jello, and a lemon poppyseed muffin. Then she moves to find a spot to sit.

Spotting the one person that doesn't really look like a true member of the crew, Claire weaves her way over to stand beside Veronica's table. "Hey.. mind if I sit here? That is if you don't mind a bit of company that isn't enlisted." Her head nods to the spot across from Vee, a smile tucking at a corner of her mouth.

Of course, Veronica knows who the petite blonde is — she just hasn't met her yet. "Not at all. I was about to run off to my bunk because I felt like the kid in the junior high lunch room no one would sit with," Veronica says with a smirk. Never mind she was one of the "in kids" — this mission has made her feel very much like a leper at times, no matter how kind people like Gillian and Cardinal and Magnes have been. "I'm not enlisted either."

She wipes her hand off on her camo cargo pants, then offers it to shake. "Veronica Sawyer," she says. "You can call me Vee or Veronica or Sawyer. Your friend the Shade likes to call me Agent just to piss me off, I think." Her way of warning Claire that she is in fact Company, in case Claire does mind the company of someone who is Company.

Setting down the tray of food, Claire takes the hand as she settles in across from the agent. "Claire.. Claire Bennet." She offers just in case. "So your Company?" The question is asked with an arch of a brow, as she takes her hand back to work at opening her water bottle. "Probably heard of my father Noah then… though it's been years since he's been in their ranks." She thinks on that, "At least as far as I know. He'd been known to go where he can get the job done."

She may not like the Company, but at this point, they are all on equal footing. "So.. kidnapped or did the Company actually send you on this mission into hell?"

Veronica chuckles a bit. "Heard of him, but I've only been in New York for less than a year. And believe it or not, I guess I'm here voluntarily. They asked, I said yes. I didn't think it'd be this bad, but I keep hearing we had it easy. I'm really sorry to hear what they did to you, Claire. I'd be a catatonic ball right now, so you must be one hell of a strong woman." She says it as a compliment. The girl has her respect.

"Surprising that there isn't more known about him.. he was often playing both sides of the field.. to make sure the right thing gets done… not that I ever liked that he was Company." Sipping at the water, the food is ignored for the moment, Claire has to work up to it with the subject at hand.

"Helps that I had most of the memories removed by a shotgun." She tries to make it sound light hearted, but it falls flat. "Though I do have plenty I do remember and hearing what happened to me.. is strangely not the same as living it. Kind of detached awareness really."

"I think it'll hit me one day. Right now there is too much to keep me moving and thinking about other things." There is a grimace as she admits that.

One of the agent's biggest fears is losing her memories — of the few friends she's had in the Company, of Brian, all the way back to her very happy childhood, and of course, her beloved father. So listening to someone speak of their memory loss gets a shiver from Veronica. "It's horrific. I think I'd be glad if I didn't remember, if I were you," she says quietly. "But I know it's hard. If it helps — I know Shade thinks the world of you and is ready to tear anyone who hurts you limb from limb," she says with a smile for their mutual friend, or one of the closest things to a friend Veronica has in here.

"Well.. admittedly I'm somewhat relieved of what I don't remember cause if it is worse then what I do remember… I…" Claire's cheeks puff out a bit with a sigh, ".. think it's best I forget." Agreeing with the Agent somewhat. "When it comes to Richard… He's like that big brother that has your back when they bullies are after him. He is one of the few people I at least have some sort of memory of. Well.. anyone I met in the last several months." Claire eyes her food and finally picks up a spoon and lightly pokes at the red cubes of gelatin watching them jiggle. "Between him, Rene, and my Unc… Kazimir." The blonde quickly corrects herself, ".. I don't have to worry about getting attacked while on the carrier."

"So you were on his team then? Him and Magnes?" There is some hesitation, by Claire, in adding the name of that certain gravity controlling man.

Veronica nods slowly. "Yeah. Your uncle too, more or less." Mostly because Kazimir can't really be said to be on a team, so much as to happen to be in the same place with the same objective, and even that could be debatable. "Gillian, I knew a little from back home, but otherwise…" she shrugs. Of course she knew Varlane, too, but she's not about to admit that. "They did good work. All of them. I'm lucky that I was with them. I've probably got them to thank for my life in some ways. Varlane for certain." She's not trying to talk the young man up for the girl's sake — she doesn't know the personal problems the two are having, though she can imagine Magnes is not doing well with the news Claire has lost most of the past several months.

"Except for the one thing I can remember, between me and Sylar… "The regenerator starts around a hesitant bite of jello. "..We actually all worked well as a team.. Course.. except for Sylar and Noriko I didn't remember any names of the team. I was the decoy and then they'd all come in and slaughter what I didn't take with me." A smirk tugs at the corner of her mouth, "I do remember feeling out of place with that team, though the reason isn't as clear."

"I feel kind of odd for saying it," Claire's smile fade away some, "but I could have easily stayed there to help. After going through war and all, I felt a sort of kinship.. even if I was out of place. There is this one guy, names Tau. Him I'll miss."

Veronica's heard Sylar's name come up a few times as a danger, especially to Claire, but she simply nods. "I liked our locals, too. At least Dahlia. She was a tough woman. Saved my ass, no doubt, and me hers. But we didn't get too chatty with any of them, really," Veronica says, uncapping her water and taking a drink. "I get not feeling part of the team." The brunette chuckles a bit at that, dimples showing with the rare smile. "I pissed off the only other agent on our team, and then of course no one else completely trusts me so I'm sort of a nomad I guess."

"Being Company I can see why." Of course, Claire quickly lifts a hand to stall any possible protests, "While I know not to trust most agents, I still have known my share of good agents." Rene and her own father being examples. "So I reserve judgment for now, though the fact all your team came back alive says a lot."

"Maybe by the end of it, people will learn to at least maybe give you the benefit of the doubt, if not the trust." Not that many secrets will comes the other woman's way. Claire does more pushing around her jello then eat it. "Some what weird if you think bout it. Friends and enemies alike tossed together into teams and forced to learn to get along. I'll never understand their reasoning for putting me with Sylar. Not like it's a huge secret that the Psycho was always wanting my ability."

"I should get together with Sylar and have him go after Monroe for me, let him get it from him instead," Veronica says with a slight snort as she sips her water. "It is a bit strange. Noriko — what's her power?" she asks curiously. She doesn't have the information on everyone and their cousin the way Cardinal apparently does. "Don't worry. Not so I can go bag and tag her or anything. Apparently she's dating one of our staffers, so she's probably off limits for that reason."

"Noriko?" Claire gives a bit of a lop sided smirk. "Use to be Candy Allard.. She is a hydrokinetic. She's deadly with it too… I think I remember people exploding…" The ex-cheerleader closes her eyes as she tries to go over the woman in her head. "And at one point thinking she was crazy… dunno what happened. It's like she is a totally other person."

"Oh.. and I wouldn't let Sylar near this Adam person whoever he is.. especially if he has an ability." She kind of shakes her spoon at the agent. "He likes to dig in peoples brains and take their ability for his own." Her nosed wrinkles some as she asks the question, "Imagine him with my ability. He'd be immortal.. an undying serial killer."

"Monroe's a serial killer, too, but not a psychopath like it sounds like this Sylar is, so I guess you're right. I was only kidding. Kind of." She gives the girl a grin. "Forget I mentioned Monroe, though. I shouldn't be talking business with the vigilantes, and all, you know?" There's a wink at that, and she pushes about a piece of lettuce with her fork, not really hungry herself. "I just hope this all goes off without a hitch, but I guess that's probably too much to ask."

Nodding slowly, Claire grins, "Oh.. I know all about the closed mouths of the Company." It sounds more like a reassurance then anything. "I… am hoping that this all works out as well. I was told by a seer in Madagascar that it will be a single moment in time that will either save us or doom us all." She gives a little sigh, "No pressure or anything."

Claire is quiet for a moment and adds, "Has… anyone warned you of what we are really facing? It's not as much about the nukes as Wagner. Not sure if Richard told you." Eyes narrow a bit as she considers the woman.

Veronica's dark brows knit a bit. "No… you know the Company works on a 'need to know basis' and I knew very little coming in. And when we got here, they kept me in infirmary a bit. I picked up a bit of an infection from Rosco's filthy knife, I guess." She taps her chest. A tiny bit of bandage can be seen peeking out of the crew neck shirt she wears.

"Didn't even know it, but had a fever so they kept me there the first 24 hours or so we were on the carrier. I missed some of the chit chat, but then…" she gives a wave of her hand. "Hard to know what they might have told me or not anyway, being who I am. Ross has probably told them I'm a traitor to my kind or something." She smirks a bit. "The nuclear weapon isn't bad enough? Who is Wagner, and what's he about?"

"Actually.. I think this is one thing that the people running this shindig either didn't know.. or know and don't care to tell us." Claire's starts eyes dropping to sliver of bandage showing. "Sorry to hear about the illness by the way.. I have a rare and incurable form of Malaria.. Always fun.." Her tone is completely flat when she talks about her condition.

"Anyhow, Wagner.. He deal is he is supposedly a very powerful ability manipulator." Taking a deep breath and letting it out slowly, she finally gives up on trying to eat and pushes the tray away. "It is like of like the Haitian and.. I don't know if you heard of my grandfather, Arthur Petrelli." She waves her hand is a kind of circle as she tries to explain it more. "He can negate the ability off a person and use it himself as long as they are in his field.. which according to Kazimir is huge.. absolutely a huge range. And he might be able to use more then one ability at a time."

"Malaria? I didn't think you could get sick, if you were a regenerator or whatever. My partner back home — well, he's away, but he has some weird cellular power that basically throws any illness or damage to the person nearest. Makes it fun and challenging to be his partner, let me tell you." The fun part was sarcasm. The challenge in earnest.

"He can negate the power and use it?" Veronica says, thoughtfully. "Dangerous, given the powers in our group. And not that I'd want him to have Kazimir's power, but has anyone thought about what it might mean to get Kazimir in his range — and out of it, before he could get his power back? Your uncle isn't indestructible like you are when he's Kazimir, is he? So if he got Kazimir's power he'd be deadly, but still killable. Unless he already is a regenerator from someone else nearby. You — you shouldn't get near him."

"Malaria is a parasite based illness.. My body repairs the damage.. but the parasite.. or whatever it is, thrives.. so much so that my ability has changed it into some sort of super bug." Claire gives Veronica a bland look, "It's all over my head.. I just know it'll kill other people unless they stay on drugs the rest of their lives."

"As for me being there, I have to be.. it's already been foretold in a way that I have to be there." Claire gives her a small smile, but it doesn't reach her eyes. "And Kazimir might be able too be indestructible.. He siphons off the life of others… I will be there..and I got plenty to spare, but if he goes after others….." The sentence is left, while an elbow is rested on the table. "I met him once.. The old man that he was at the time before he ended up in Peter. He killed my friends, turned them to so much dust… but could not do the same to me. I healed faster then he could suck he life out of me."

"Just because something is … seen by a precog doesn't mean you have to do it. Unless they howed you the way it will work, and you have the answer because of what they said… I would really hate for this Wagner guy to get your power. And if there's no one close enough for Kazimir to syphon from …" Veronica muses, speaking slowly, but then she shakes her head. "There's always life of course. Even in Antarctica. I guess it wouldn't work." She sighs. "So they all know — the people planning this? Autumn and the rest?" She gives a slight shake of her head again. "God. I feel like a pawn. They don't tell me anything. Starting to think I'm just a grunt. No power, just good with a gun. Jarhead."

"It is a risk I need to take." Claire states with confidence. "As for if they all know.. I don't know. I found out from Kazimir himself.. and I feel we all need to know what we're getting into. It is our lives on the line. It at the briefing for the assault they tell us. Well, good. If not, then we still know what we're getting into."

"But even at that, I do feel like a pawn, though I have no idea what brought me here. I just know what I was told. I stepped off an aircraft with Richard. So I wasn't a prisoner at least." There is an uncertain shrug of Claire's shoulders.

Veronica nods slowly. "Right. I came willingly, myself, but I feel like they keep leaving us in the dark without telling us everything we need to know. Hopefully they'll let us know at the briefing." She sighs a bit, pushing away her own food. "Does Varlane know? Or Gillian?" She'll tell them if she needs to, if it's not made clear at the briefing. "You're right. Especially anyone with a power — since he can leech it."

"I.." Claire starts and then stops, her expression thoughtful, "I don't remember a Gillian. But Magnes… He…" She gives Veronica an embarrassed and sheepish look. "He's somewhat difficult for me to talk too. Not taking this whole shotgun to the brain thing too well. Not that I blame him, but… " Hands spread in a helpless gesture, "He seems to think I can just jump right back in his arms, even though right now he's almost nothing more then a stranger."

That, Veronica can relate to. Different circumstances, but it about sums up Brian returning after being AWOL for months. She sighs a little. "Poor Varlane," she says with a shake of her head. "But yeah. You need to take care of you, right now. Don't make yourself feel bad trying to take care of anyone else. And of course keep your head in this crazy operation. Don't worry. Cardinal or I'll tell Magnes. And the others in Alpha, if they don't know." She smiles, and reaches over to pat the younger girl's hand. "Thanks for telling me, Claire. I appreciate you trusting me."

"Thank you…" The words come out in a rush before Claire can stop herself. She's been stressing out some about Magnes and it's a relief she won't have to explain a dangerous situation he might not want her in. "And your welcome.. the shits about to hit the fan, no need to be clueless about it."

Eyes drop to the tray and then lift again, "If you see Richard… and he asks if I was eating.. say yes and I ate all of it." Claire gives Veronica a smile that only tugs on one side of her mouth as she gets out of her chair. The water bottle is tucked in the thigh pocket of her BDU pants, but the rest is bound for the garbage. "It''s.. still hard to eat after seeing a lot of the things Rasoul did to the people."

"Anyhow.. Thank you Veronica for the company. I'm going to go back to my bunk for awhile." The agent gets a true smile from the blonde regenerator. "It was nice meeting you as well."

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