A Possibly Invaluable Service


cat_icon.gif gillian_icon.gif

Scene Title A Possibly Invaluable Service
Synopsis Cat gets Gillian out of triage so she can go through withdrawal in private. They discuss her possible name change, and Gillian gets caught up more on what the Institute used her and Joseph to do when they first took them.
Date August 15, 2010

Alley Cat Courier Service Bronx: Phoenix HQ

This is a finished basement with pale blue carpet except in the utility rooms where floors are easy to clean grey stone. Walls are painted a soft cream color. It's been soundproofed to keep noise from reaching the Alley Cat Couriers franchise above, and measures were taken to prevent water from leaking in.

Much of the HQ is common area with recliners and couches before a large HD set, but there are business areas. One portion has state of the art computer systems (both PC and Mac), equipment to handle footage from various camera and surveillance systems, and a large executive desk. Another zone is set aside for various armaments and protective gear. Weapons, hazmat suits with portable oxygen bottles, body armor, comm gear, disposable phones. Then there's the conference room with a large table and sixteen seats. An exercise area with the basics is also provided.

Scattered around the periphery, where space isn't already taken, are a number of rooms with beds for members to use when in need. A sizable closet is stacked floor to ceiling with cots which can be used if a sudden need to shelter numerous people arises.

Access to and exit from this HQ is by the stairs and large open freight elevator which leads to the ACB manager's office and a tunnel system which leads to Harlem.

It's an extended trip across Nuked York City from the Nature Center on Staten Island to here, arrived at by carefully avoiding those patrols of soldiers which remain in search of combatants from the battle, reaching Harlem, and going through the secret tunnel. The way is led by a solemn and somber Cat through security measures and into the very secret place.

She holds the door for Gillian on finally getting there, then closes and secures it before heading to one of the rooms featuring beds. "We haven't needed to use the place much," she comments, "but the time may come." Last one to really be a resident was Helena Dean on the top floor after being rescued from Humanis First and witnessing Bill's suicide, where she faced her own withdrawal issues.

Though Gillian was mobile enough, once they get into the old fire station, she drops the bag that Juniper had brought her, and sits down on the floor against the wall. The pale skin is even more pale than before, small shivers wracking her body. Not quite at the fever and constant vomitting stage, but she's definitely beginning to go through a stronger withdrawal.

"I think it's here— or at least it's starting. Do you have warm water and showers and everything? Cause— I haven't had a real shower since… since they took me." And she knows she's going to need it in a bit, even if just to releave some of the symptoms.

"Thanks for letting me come here— I don't want everyone to see me going through this." Cardinal had offered a place as well, but— this choice was hers.
"No need to thank me, Gillian," Cat quietly tells the less tall brunette as eyes observe her condition, "you're Phoenix and this is a Phoenix place. There's hot and cold water, showers, food here. They probably had you on a drug called Amp." Questions exist in her mind about the experience, but are held back, at least for now letting it be Gillian's choice to direct conversation there or not. She remembers her own experience with much briefer captivity all too perfectly.

And given that, she'd not be surprised if Gillian opts to set up a cot in the main room's center and sleep there just to have more open space on all sides.

"Yeah, the black shit," Gillian responds quietly, rubbing her face with her hands, and noting how warm she happens to be. Perhaps all the walking. But it's not so much she's wanting to sleep right there, so much as she's not quite ready to get back up yet, so she looks up at Cat instead. "The second doctor, Gregor they called him? He's the one who liked to inject me with Amp. The fat doctor, he liked adrenaline and electrical shocks. But I think the Amp's addictive, or something— I mean that seems to be what's causing the withdrawal."

"Dmitri Gregor," Cat provides with an edge to her voice, "he was the butcher working for Rasoul in Madagascar. The fat doctor would be Bao-Wei Cong. He was semi-famous, got himself in the news a few times for speculation about the SLC and people with it." To speak of that one causes a measure of veiled regret's surfacing in mind. She really should have let Harlow shoot his face off, and then get truly serious.

"I don't doubt Amp is addictive," she confirms a few beats later, "I believe it's the compound Colette said Bella Sheridan discovered when she experimented on her."

"I started looking forward to the injections," Gillian muses softly, eyes sliding closed as she leans her head back against the wall. She needs a haircut, needs a shower, and needs some real sleep— but none of that will be easy to get until after she gets through this. And hopefully she won't need more than aspirin. It's not the first time she's been through withdrawal, but this time, she doesn't have herself to blame for it— it's not her fault.

"What happened with the Flash? What all do you know about it right now?" It's a question she's almost asked a few times, but— if anyone can answer it in enourmous detail like she wants right now, it's Cat. "Did a lot of people die when it happened?"

The augmentor is regarded for a long moment, the facial expression Cat shows one which asks 'do you really want the answer?' before she gives it in subdued voice. It's not a small number, of either injured or deceased. After uttering the reported figures, a stretch of silence is allowed to prevail.

"There are websites where claims of visions have been posted, it can't be determined if any of them are true or false. Colette Nichols has gone around the Ferry making video records of anyone who'll talk which I haven't seen yet," she admits, "a lot of people simply won't discuss what they've seen. But of those who do, the common thread is November 8th and rioting."

Not a small number. It wouldn't have mattered if Peter had avoided mentioning the accidents caused by the flashes— Gillian would have found out eventually. That's what she does. How many people have died because of her ability? How many people have been saved? Does the good outweight the bad? "November 8th? So everyone saw something that had the exact same date?" In some ways, it's good to have a date. In other ways… "The 4th anniversary… I doubt it's a coincidence." Fate, usually isn't.

"So did you see anything?"

"I didn't have a flash," she relates quietly, "I was one of the folks who stayed awake. I was headed for Little Italy to meet Teo and Delilah for lunch when it hit. Then there was a message from Hana telling me to go forward, so I walked up the bridge toward Roosevelt Island. It was a mess, a lot of crashed vehicles and hurt people. Hana was on a bus that almost went off a bridge, so were Kaylee, Abby, and one of my law school classmates. Helped get people off and threw my hand into helping the wounded. After Joseph was let go, Kaylee helped him recover some memories of what went on, and passed them to me. I got her together with a technopath so she could try to make a video record, but it's not worked out very well. Yet."

Feet cross the floor, she settles onto her backside next to the former Miss Childs. "November 8th and riots fit with some things Else Kjelstrom wrote about during flu time," Cat provides, "there's also a Nathan Petrelli speech in the mix. As to what sparks the rioting, it's wide open. Might even be the DoEA's move to register even people without the SLC, but so far it doesn't seem to be sparking that much anger."

"There were fires in mine," Gillian comments softly, looking across up and away as she does. Still no pushing herself back up off the floor, but… it's hard to do much right now, after all the travelling she had to do to get this far. Out of Staten Island was a must, though, she knew that much. "Knowing when helps, though— a little. At least I know it's not tomorrow." It won't be tomorrow until November 7th, at least. Then it'll be tomorrow.

"I've been thinking a lot about what I'm going to do until then— I may need to ask you for some money. Like— more than just what it would take to buy a couple books for a bookshelf." There's a laugh. "And I need a new name. I need to start getting used to not being Gillian anymore."
"Money can be done," Cat agrees, her mind then turning to other names for suggestion. "Brooke Davis," she muses while watching Gillian's face for reaction to it. "Emily Parker, Madison Scott, June Fields…" A choice made again in not pressing for more details about what she saw in her vision, asking can happen later and might not be needed, it could come unprompted.

For some reason, Gillian has to laugh a bit and shake her head. None of the names really grab her, though they all could be workable in a certain situation. "I was thinking something to do with my parents, the real ones. Like— not Winters, cause that would be obvious, but my mom's maiden name was Chevalier." There's a pause. "I think Gwen could work. Gwen Chevalier…" It sounds good, and her initials actually would stay the same. But that's not why she's choosing Gwen. It's the 'wen' that's the hint, same as Winters.

"So your ancestry would be Welsh and French, possibly," Cat remarks. "Have you ever ridden a horse?" A few more possible names run through her mind but aren't given voice, she tracking back to another subject. "What sort of business are you planning to start?"

"Business— well, it'll have to be something kid friendly," Gillian says, looking down at her hand, then suddenly her eyes fall on her shirt again. A very kid friendly shirt that. It's a mushroom, of Mario Brothers fame, with a 1up underneath it. Thanks to Juniper. "I want to get a safe house that the Lighthouse kids can go to if the worst comes to worst— or a place that we can put kids who aren't safe to be on public record. An off the books orphanage, I guess. And something not associated with Linderman. It's actually something he suggested to me himself, too."

"The Council's looking for a place to use as a school," Cat tells her. "It'd be off the books, you could be the operator. I definitely agree with it not being connected to Linderman. Would've been my advice from the start, other means of assistance could've been found, but the deed was done before I had any clue what was coming."

"Linderman isn't so bad," Gillian says with a shrug, perhaps not quite thinking as poorly of him as others might, especially not after he came out in the blizzard to heal her after she got mauled by feral dogs, and got an infection that might have killed her, with the inability to get good medical attention. "But it's definitely not safe. It could certainly be a school, as well as a safehouse," she adds with a nod. "That's basically my plan. A place for the kids. I just want…" Suddenly she trails off, and then starts to stand up, slowly. But there's a definite change in her skintone all of a sudden. "Where was the bathroom?"

Another of those things not commented on, her knowledge of Linderman having helped the nuking happen along with Bishop, Petrelli, and others. Cat might even be about to clue her in, but this development changes her course of action and commentary. "This way," she informs, rising to accompany the augmentor there. Instead of discussing business matters further, a possibly invaluable service will be provided for Gill… Gwen Chevalier.

Holding her hair back.

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