40 Winks


cardinal_icon.gif elisabeth2_icon.gif

Scene Title 40 Winks
Synopsis She's gotta sleep sometime! But there's information involved too. Cardinal met up with the Deveaux Group.
Date Feb 12, 2011

Elisabeth's Apartment, Dorchester Towers

Richard Cardinal's made himself at home. This may not be a good thing.

The fans over the stove are on high, and despite the time of year the windows are cracked open to try and get rid of the last of the smoke. There's a blackened-edged pot in the sink, and he's currently running water on it even as he scrubs some red stains off the stovetop, looking a little harried, the side of his hand reddened from some minor burns. There's what might have once been pasta in the top of the garbage can.

Dinner may be delayed.

As she lets herself in the door, Elisabeth drops keys on the foyer table and shrugs her coat off onto a hook by the door. The odor tells her something about what happened, but …. "And here I thought you'd mastered the art of reheating by now, lover. What's up?" she teases. She looks beyond weary. The fallout from explosions in the dome is keeping her busy.

"I was trying to make something from scratch, actually," Cardinal admits, his head lifting to look ruefully back over his shoulder to Elisabeth, "It, uh, didn't go that well, I'm afraid. I'm cleaning it up, don't worry." He straightens, then, turning to look back to her with a growing frown, "You look like shit. Long day?"

Elisabeth shrugs and walks around the island to help herself to a beer from the fridge. Setting it on the counter, she answers softly, "Yeah. Buncha gunfire inside the dome and shit means we gotta keep the press away from the perimeter. They've got all hands on deck for it including us." She shrugs slightly.

A sigh, Cardinal's head shaking slowly. "Any idea what? Or just… looting and security forces responding in kind? I should get down to the dome and try and get a sit-rep from the Redbird personnel inside, if I can get someone over to the edge." He steps over to her, sliding his hands around her hips and looking down to her worriedly, "You all right?"

"No one knows," Elisabeth admits. "And I haven't been able to get updates from JJ or Jaiden yet. Jaiden's cell is up and running, though, so if you can't get someone near the edge, just call him." She shoves a hand through her hair and leans into him with a grateful sigh. Her arms slide around him and she just hugs. "I'm okay. Nothing an extra couple hours of sleep won't cure," she assures him with a faint smile. "So…. you've raided the freezer to the point of extinction, then?"

A kiss is pressed against her brow, Cardinal's words quiet as it stirs through her hair. "There's still food there," he admits quietly, "You should definately get some sleep tonight, though."

"I will," she promises. "It's why I came back here. If I stay there, I'm too tempted to get up and check on things constantly." Elisabeth grins. "Sorta like someone else I know, I have this tendency to run about like a chicken with my head cut off and delegation's not my strongest suit."

When she pulls away to look up at him, a sly smile quirks her mouth. Elisabeth's blue eyes twinkle at him as she says, tongue firmly in cheek, "Oh, so you came over cuz you missed me. Or … you wanted Aric's cooking. Or….. " She rolls her eyes and sighs dramatically. "You wanted to talk to him about work or something."

"Something like that." Cardinal leans down to peck a kiss to her chin, then pulls back fully to step back over towards the stove— it still needs to be cleaned off, after all. As he grabs for the scouring pad again, he asks, "So what's going on with Agent Pak, exactly? Do you think we can trust her, or…?"

Elisabeth narrows her eyes and moves to pick up her beer after a quick stroke of his shoulder. Twisting off the cap, she takes a long swallow before answering. She swipes the back of her hand across her mouth. "I don't know," she replies finally. "But I think they fucked with the wrong DoEA agent when they tasered her and snatched Aric out from under her."

The raspy pad scrubs over dried bits of pasta sauce as Cardinal speaks, his head shaking a little. "What'd she say, exactly…? And how much did you tell her in return?"

Now she walks over and leans her hip on the counter, her arms crossed while she sips her beer. "I told her about Tyler Case being alive, which she knew. That he was running the Institute. Which she didn't. That he's the one who snatched and tortured Aric because he wanted him for the electrical ability to run a fucking machine that was going to wind up being a very Bad Thing <tm>. It would likely be a black ops run like the one that's already in my jacket that she doesn't have clearance to read about because the Institute is essentially the black ops division of the fucking Homeland offices itself."

Liz pauses and considers. "And in return for telling her even that much, she's going to fake continuing the investigation." She smiles faintly around another pull of her beer. "She congratulated us on covering our tracks. But she's going to get off my ass. She can't help Nash or Alia, though."

"It isn't Tyler, but…" Cardinal's hand stops in its scrubbing for a moment, his head falling forward as he closes his eyes. Clearly he isn't happy with his friend being blamed for everything. "…no way we can explain what's actually going on. If she's not… completely briefed, she'd never believe it." A glance back over his shoulder, "She actually believed all of that?"

With a faint smile, Elisabeth says drily, "She was skeptical of the whole point of the Institute being to keep the timeline on track, but…. she already knows about Hiro Nakamura, so…. it wasn't out of the realm of reason for her." She considers. "She asked some other questions, and I told her flat out that I wouldn't answer her. Yet. She had to earn some street credit with me first. Let's see what she does with what she knows so far." She tilts her head. "She's willing to not run Aric in at all, just get his side of the story recorded for the file and let it go at that. Or so she says. I'd like to see her prove that before we go further with her. Unless you have reason to want to move faster."

"No. That's fine," Cardinal shakes his head slightly, "It's a good start, and I don't want to… rush anything." He straightens away from the oven, turning back towards her and tossing the scrub-pad over towards the sink, tumbling over the edge of the dirty pot. "So. That translocator that Flint sent me found us a possible safehouse. I've got her and Monica cleaning it up, it should be a good spot to base our more— wanted agents out of."

With a nod, Elisabeth takes another pull of the beer and sets it down, glancing in the sink to just smile at the dirty dishes. It doesn't seem to bother her a bit that he's running about cooking — or in this case, cleaning up the mess. She looks back at him and says, "I don't know how much she'll want or need to know. She has an Agent Hanson in Homeland that she trusted to check up on Aric's whereabouts after he was taken because they flashed Homeland badges at her… Hanson was visited by someone ostensibly from the NSA and told to back the hell off or else losing her job would be the least of her worries." She sighs. "They're…. playing hardball."

"That's alright." A smirk twitches to Cardinal's lips at that statement, "The harder they clench their fist, the more agents will slip through their fingers…" That's right. He's paraphrasing Princess Leia at the moment. "Speaking of the safehouse, though— uh— I wanted to talk about a possible organizational change."

The blonde looks curious. "We have an organization now?" Elisabeth teases, not having missed the irony of that little quote. Then she winks and says, "I'm glad to hear about the safe house. Moving Aric there would be good." She glances toward the hallway. "He's at Redbird, which…. is really the only reason I came," she admits softly. There's a bit of a rueful look. "No privacy anywhere at all anymore. So what's this change?"

"That's the thing…" Cardinal gestures a bit, "…I want to avoid the problems with this whole— Aric situation again. I'd like to divide Endgame up a bit more. We'll keep those who aren't actively wanted or illegally registered at Redbird, and we'll get the others at the safehouse. Maybe leave Monica in charge. Our cell agents will stay in plce where they are, of course."

Elisabeth nods immediately. "Sounds reasonable to me," she replies, remaining with a hip against the counter. She toys with the beer bottle. "What do you make of this dream thing?" she asks finally. "It seems random."

Cardinal grimaces, stepping over to open the freezer. Maybe there's something microwavable. "It does," he murmurs, "It seems like Joseph's ability, but… he wasn't using it? It's no coincidence that it was about his funeral, I don't think."

"Eh…. honestly, it's just a wierd little blip on the radar. Except." Except that nothing is ever quite that simple or straightforward, is it? Elisabeth smirks faintly, peeking over his shoulder into the freezer. "Aric's been cooking," she observes. "You won't starve til I can stock up again, at least," she teases, wrapping her arms around his waist and resting her chin on his shoulder.

The second thing wrapped in aluminum foil is taken out, although Cardinal can't lower his arms since he's suddenly wearing an Elisabeth back-pack. He turns his head a bit, lips twitching in a faint smile. "True. Can I get to the microwave, lover?"

"Nope. I'm going to hug you tight here cuz by the time you even think about climbing in the bed with me — assuming you do think about it, of course — I'm likely to be dead to the world," Elisabeth laughs. "And don't put foil in the microwave or it'll explode," she adds for good measure. Just in case he was thinking about it!

"I'm not that useless," Cardinal replies with a good-natured roll of his eyes, moving to step along towards the microwave - and the cabinets with plates - with Elisabeth's arms wrapped around him as best he can. Since he doesn't have to look at her just yet, he admits quietly as he does so, "I stopped by the Deveaux Society offices the other day."

She does, in fact, release him easily. Moving back to stand in the doorway, Elisabeth watches him. "Christ….. seriously?" she asks softly. "What happened?"

A plate's pulled out, and Cardinal starts unwrapping the leftovers — whatever they may be — and setting them on the plate, his head shaking slowly. "I met Alice Shaw," he explains tersely, "She was at Coyote Sands, actually. More interesting was the fact that she'd met me before — well." A pause, and he corrects, "She saw me before."

Both eyebrows shoot up. "Okay," Elisabeth says slowly. She leans back against that counter next to the door where she was leaning before, thoughtful. "She saw…. you, or she saw him?" she thinks to ask quietly. Because something about his tone isn't quite right.

"Him." Cardinal slides the plate in the microwave, pushing the keypad's buttons a bit, "That's where he landed… when he went back. Coyote Sands. In the middle of the purge."

Jesus. Elisabeth grimaces, sighing heavily. "Christ," she murmurs. "It's not bad enough that he lived through hell in his own time, then he gets to go back and live that. So….. what else did she say? I mean…. if she knew about you… I'm not sure I get why they'd be helping us against the Institute."

"He was bleeding," Cardinal reports quietly as the microwave starts to hum, "Confused, like he'd been in a fight. I don't think he came back on purpose, actually. The Guard opened fire on him, and he just… reached out and made them not. Just wisps of bleeding shadow." A tight shake of his head, "She didn't. They didn't know about the Institute." He grimaces, "Neither did Niklaus. He does now."

Elisabeth reaches up and rubs her forehead. "Considering that he claimed it was a Moab-tier accident that sent him back to the past…. that particular report rings true, at least." But she pauses and considers. "You can't do that. Yet." But she's seen plenty that he can. The man absorbed a friggin' nuclear explosion. A faint grimace twists her lips and she says, "Well, I bet that went over about like a lead balloon," she sighs.

Cardinal shakes his head a bit, "Yeah, it went about as… well as I could imagine. In the end he dropped himself on the 'if you turn into him, I will murder you' queue with you and everybody else who knows." A smirk back over to her, "Shaw seemed satisfied, though."

She smiles at him, blue eyes sad. "I keep telling people — you made that choice a long while back," Elisabeth says quietly. "I once told you I wouldn't let you become the monster. We've both seen the dark sides, and I know you don't ever want to be that. But it had nothing to do with me, really — you chose." Shaw's satisfaction? Seems unimportant in light of it. "You think that they'll actually step forward and help?" she asks.

"I don't know." Cardinal's brow furrows just a little, "She made it sound like it was a… job interview, almost. I'm going to have to talk to Mrs. Zimmer when she gets back from Virginia, apparently. They wouldn't explain anything until I talked to her."

Elisabeth nods. "All right," she says, picking up her beer and swallowing the last of it as the microwave beeps at him. She grins a bit. "Bet that's the first job interview you've had in years," she teases. "Glad it went well, babe."

Cardinal smirks at that, his head shaking. "Apparently, Charles talked about me a lot in his journals. I've got to wonder how much he read from my mind, when I was back there…"

Now there's a question in and of itself. She, too, wonders. Elisabeth murmurs, "If he's anywhere near the strength of Matt Parkman, he could have had it all in just the time you spoke with him," she says quietly. "Then again," she offers, "there's something of a circular concern here. What makes us think that the other Cardinal didn't go back in time and meet up with Deveaux at some point before he was killed?"

Elisabeth points out, "Just because the women running the society didn't know doesn't mean Charles Deveaux didn't."

"I can't believe he didn't use what he knew to save the Company… he was surprisingly ethical," Cardinal shakes his head slowly, admitting as he looks back to Elisabeth, "I wish I could've known him better." He pauses, admitting, "We don't. But I don't think— that he met Deveaux, in his timeline. There wouldn't've been any reason to."

She considers that argument and Elisabeth slowly says, "That… makes sense." Drily she adds, "Christ, I hate time travel. But that makes sense if you consider that… as an example…. in his timeline, people may not have been having a timeline war, plus the Institute didn't come into existence in his timeline until after current time. He built the Institute after he killed his Elisabeth." She ponders, trying to make sense of what she knows. "So he may have had no reason to go back to that time period to stop all that anyway. And therefore never met Deveaux. Not to mention, in his timeline — the real one — Niki and Niklaus's mother was dead. And …. Christ, talk about diverging from a time stream." She shakes her head. "Okay, I'm giving myself a migraine," she finishes, sticking her tongue at him.

"And he would've killed Niklaus," Cardinal adds with a slow shake of his head, "So he wouldn't have had any reason to save Claudia… I doubt that Hiro even would've chosen him. His Hiro. Which— " He grimaces, "— I still can't believe that slanty-eyed little time cop won't do anything about this bullshit."

"Wow…. don't hold back, lover, tell me how you really feel," Elisabeth snickers softly. "Maybe you just asked the wrong Hiro to fix it," she adds with a shake of her head.

"I don't have much of a choice," says Cardinal, slanting a look to one side as he says quietly, "I think he killed the other one."

Elisabeth blinks, her expression suddenly blanking from amused to holy shit. "Why do you think that?" she asks carefully.

"After I told him about… Ezekiel," Cardinal admits slowly, looking back to her with a furrowing of his brow, "He mentioned that he'd taken care of his own— problem, and that I should take care of mine."

She flinches. Visibly. But ELisabeth's blue eyes don't drop from his gaze. Her tone is quiet. "When it needs doing… you don't have to be the one to do it." Niki's already said she would, assuming she's here. Lola sure as hell would. Aric claims he can, but Liz is not sure of that. And God help her, the knowledge is there in her face — that if she has to choose between them, the man in front of her will win. "Let's burn that bridge when we get to it, though."

"I'd rather get Delphine to him, if possible," says Cardinal with a slow shake of his head, "I don't want to… fail Tyler again, Liz." He regards her seriously, "I did once already. But if it comes down to it…"

"I know," Elisabeth says quietly. "But you have to remember that this is Tyler's body, not Tyler. This sucks. There are no good choices." She walks to him and reaches up to cradle his cheek lightly. "I'm sorry. I'm sorry for Tyler Case, because he never deserved any of this. And I'm sorry for you, because he's your friend and you're doing what you can… and it may still not be enough. I wish that I could change it for you. The only thing I can do is… be here." And take that horrific choice from him if she can.

"No." Cardinal shakes his head tightly, "It's Tyler… that's been brainwashed to think that he's Ezekiel. It's no different than any other sort of— mind control." The microwave 'dings' and he turns to pull it open, muttering quietly, "If we don't have any other choice, we'll kill him. But if there is a choice…"

Elisabeth blinks, startled. "What??" she demands. "Richard… " She lets him go get his food. "What the hell is making you think that?" she asks, more gently though with no less urgency.

Cardinal slants a look back over his shoulder. "That's how Carpenter's power works, Liz," he states, just an edge of irritation. It's not really directed at her, although it might seem to be. "It's just a xerox of memories and personality, plastered over Tyler's."

"So….. where the fuck is the real Ezekiel in all of this?" Elisabeth asks patiently. Because he obviously has a theory. "I'm not concerned so much about Carpenter's power, I'm more interested in why you think that they couldn't have had their consciousnesses swapped — say Tyler's the brain in the jar now or something."

"Dead." Cardinal draws the plate out with a shake of his head, moving to step out of the kitchen and towards the living room, "Because they don't… swap consciousnesses. That's not how Doc's power works."

Elisabeth looks thoughtful. "Huh," she states mildly. He's given her some things to think about at least. And a better insight into why he's insisting that he has to save Tyler. This is the first he's really explained that. "Interesting." She slips out of his way, letting him sit with his dinner, sighing heavily. And then she leans down to kiss his temple softly. "Eat and some rest, babe. There's nothing to be done about it right now anyway," she sighs. She nuzzles his ear before pushing upright and heading toward the master bedroom. "I'm going to catch 40 winks if I can." Nothing else to do in this moment while she's waiting on word from the Dome — she's already been on patrol too long.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License