A Final Spark


f_edward_icon.gif isabelle_icon.gif f_rickham2_icon.gif

Scene Title A Final Spark
Synopsis Edward Ray meets up with Isabelle to discuss her stolen vial of the Formula.
Date July 1, 2009

Old Lucy's

With the sun having just set, the regular evening patrons of Old Lucy's arrive into the vibrant atmosphere of the crowded bar just as the house music is being turned up to blaring levels for the evening. Rows of familiar faces lining stools and packing tables; neon lights reflecting in mirrors and the sounds of clinking glasses and conversation are all nearly drowned out by the roar of the music's rythmic beat.

Seated at one end of the bar near the door, however, a late middle-aged man with a receeding hairline, distintive nose and ears and a furrowed brow looks mildly familiar as he leans in to spare a word with one of the waitresses. When a hand is pointed down the bar by the waitress, gesturing towards the bar's owner and escaped futigive, it's when the weasley-looking smile on Edward Ray's face alights some, in all its insincere glory.

Waving a hand down towards the dark-haired owner of Old Lucy's, the slight form of Edward Ray motions for her to come up, a crooked smile soon replacing that toothy grin of his, something wry and measured between satisfaction and confidence.

That guy does look familiar… who is he? Isabelle tilts her head and her long dark hair falls into her eyes. She saunters over to where the man is and places a hand on the bar in front of him. Her eyes studying him. "What." Is her greeting.

"Isabelle Ashford?" Far too formal of an address, even as the short man offers out a hand across the bar. "My name is Doctor Edward Ray, I'm a physicist from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology," it is truth, though also a lie by omission of over a decade of other misdeeds. "An associate of mine, Richard Cardinal?" The name is dropped with a quieter tone, "I told him to come speak to you about a rather important matter, and I have reason to believe he was sent home empty handed." Ever the game player, Edward is. "I was hoping you and I might be able to make a profitable negotiation, perhaps in a more…" blue eyes scan the occupied bar stools at either side of him, "discrete location?"

"Follow." Another one word response. Isa looks at Edward without shaking the hand and taps Brenda on the ass. "I'll be back!" she calls and kicks open the door to the backroom. As she enters, her hand lights on fire and she leans against the wall. Throwing a fireball up into the air and catching it. The fire reflects off her eyes.

"Profitable, you say?" A slow grin. "Your name is familiar… can't seem to remember where I heard it." She winks at Edward and continues playing with the fire.

Uneasily following Isabelle around the bar, Edward's blue gaze tracks the waitresses and their positions for the briefest of moments before slipping in to the back room, closing the door behind himself as his eyes follow that sphere of flame up and down in the air. "I… may have averted the end of the world, once or twice," he notes with such casual mention, as if he were talking about meeting at the grocery store. "Profitable though, yes. I— take it that Richard spoke to you about what he and I need, what you stole?"

Perhaps just a touch of accusatory tone comes from Edward as he regards Isabelle, one brow raised. "If you're willing to cooperate, there's a large number of things I may be willing to do for you… and I imagine there's a lot of things a wanted woman, such as yourself, may be in need of." His eyes begin wandering the room silently.

"Ah ah ah. None of that accusing kind sir." Isabelle teases and slides a finger down her lips to her chest. "It was already stolen, I just happened to be laying on a vial of it."

"I know what you want, now I want to know why." She states and puts one hand on her waist. The fireball is put out and smoke rises to the ceiling. "There are a number of things a woman such as myself could use. I have no way of knowing if you can do anything that you are saying you can do." She steps closer to Edward and grins at him. "Now.. what are you using Cardinal for?" Simple and to the point.

"Cardinal is a delightfully blunt instrument who happens to have a heart of gold and a moral compass that clashes with it." Edward's blue stare is intense, but begins wandering the back room again after a moment. "Have you ever read the book Don Quixote?" It's an odd segue by Edward as he meanders a bit in the room, his focus settling on a small box, then on a shelf stacked with bottles, then on a door that leads into the beer cooler. His head cants to the side, then blue eyes settle back up on Isabelle. "It's about a delusional old man who, in his senility, perceives every windmill in the land as a dragon to be fought."

Edward tilts his head down into a nod, "Richard is my Don Quixote, and Arthur Petrelli is his windmill." There's a hesitant smile Edward offers, followed by a shifting of his focus back to the cooler door, then to Isabelle again. "All I want, is what you have."

"Never read it." Isabelle says bluntly and continues too watch Edwards as he walks around the back room. Her eyes narrow and tilts her head and puts a hand on her hip. "So this… Formula? It's gonna help with killing Arthur." She states.

"No," Edward notes with a shake of his head, "but Cardinal believes it will, and that's what he needs to know. The Formula has an entirely different use, but it's so long-term that Richard couldn't quite put it thorugh his thick head if it used a hammer to deliver the particulars to him." There's a faintly antagonistic smile from Edward as he takes a few steps past Isabelle, hands tucking into the pockets of his zippered jacket, shoulders rolling forward.

"In the end, it doesn't matter what I want it for, only that I do, and…" Edward's head tilts down slightly, "I want to know what you want in return for it." Blue eyes lift up even as his head inclines, meeting Isabelle's. "Everyone has a price."

"A favor." Is Isabelle's answer. She tilts her head at Edward and flexes her hand. "When I decide to ask for it, that's all." She smiles wickedly at the doctor and nods her head. "Sound fair to you?" An eyebrow is raised, "What would that long term effect on Richard be exactly?"

Wandering behind Isabelle, Edward looks down at a metal coffee can stacked with others on the shelf, brushing his fingers over it slowly. "Richard won't have to worry about it," he says in a quiet tone of voice, one hand still in the pocket of his jacket, "he's… not going to have the time to worry about it. And besides, it's not his problem to worry about," his hand smoothly slides out of the jacket, a split second before the door from this back room leading to the alley is forced open with a sudden slam of the hinges. There, in the doorway, stands a tall figure in a long jacket and hooded sweatshirt, silhouetted by the grimy yellow light of the alley. What little light does brush across one side of the tall man's face beneath the hood reveals a horribly disfigured countenance of pitted iron and jet black metallic eyes.

In the momentary distraction that Allen Rickham's sudden arrival provides, Edward fully withdraws a snub-nosed revolved from within his jacket, pressing it up to the center of Isabelle's back. Three shots, muffled by the proximity of her flesh to the barrel pop off one after another in the same moment that three bursts of red are expelled out of the front of her chest.

"It's not your problem either, now."

And there go the shots.. One.. Two.. Three..

Izzy looks down and her eyes are wide. She starts to shake and drops to her knees. "Well.. this was unexpected.. oh well." Her eyes burn with an inner flame and they flutter before the pain finally sets in and she throws her head back and shrieks. The first and last time someone will ever hear her scream.

Flames erupt all over her body, clothes burning fast and her hand comes down onto Edward's leg, with a smile she unleashes a jet of fire that should consume his whole leg and more of his body if he doesn't move.

A dark laugh rings out from the woman and she shoots jets of fire towards the metal man as she falls to the ground. More flames leave her hands and she curls her fist. A few things in the backroom of Old Lucy's have caught on fire.

Edward barely has enough time to pull himself away as his pant leg and the flesh beneath engulfs in flames from the brillaint inferno conjured from Isabelle's final moments. He struggles, stumbling back and away from her as the flames lick up and dance along his pants, a pained scream coming from him, one muffled by the pulsing beat of loud music just on the other side of the wall. Reaching for the fire extinguisher by the door, Edward yanks the pin out and squeezes the handle, spraying a suffocating foam all down one side of his pants and around the room, gun forgotten in a clatter on the floor.

"Allen, Allen!" He's breathing in rasping hisses, hands shaking and eyes wide, "The coffee can, it's in the coffee can." Dropping the fire extinguisher with a clunk, Edward leans up against the wall, then quickly moves to lock the door to the back room seconds before someone tries to open it. The handle jiggles, clicks and clatters.

As Allen snatches the coffee can from the shelf, he tosses it to Edward. "What about her? Cardinal's going to kill you." Catching the Can, Edward turns wide, pained blue eyes up to Rickham's molten metal face in half-shadow.

"Take her with us. We'll dump her off somewhere," he pops the plastic lid off of the can, scraping out a few stacks of money, letting them fall to the floor and sink into the flame-retardant foam that mixes with blood and smoke, then removes a pneumatic syringe filled with a red liquid tucked into a plastic sleeve. Palming the vial of the Formula, Edward looks from Rickham down to Isabelle's still living body. "Don't just stand there, pick her up." He's frantic, has to get out of here before someone gets the keys to come in.

Grunting in a hollow, metallic noise, Allen scowls and crouches down, picking up Isabelle's body and her half-charred clothing, slinging her over one shoulder. Edward, limping painfully, follows behind as Allen makes his way for the door to the alley. Hesitating, he turns his focus back to the room, and limps back over to his gun, crouching down to pick up the revolver, tucking it into his jacket pocket.

Staring down at the bloodstain, his mouth tenses, jaw tensing. "This is the only way," he says to himself, but Allen hears him talking, turning to look back over his shoulder to Edward in silent question. "It's… it's nothing," Edward murmurs, waving a dismissive hand as he starts to limp back to the broken door.

"We've got what we came for."

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