brennan_icon.gif eileen_icon.gif jonas_icon.gif liette_icon.gif

Scene Title Allowances
Synopsis Scott's orders to release Brennan do not go as planned.
Date May 12, 2010

The Garden

A sliver of light emanating from between the gap between the basement door and its wooden frame. Booted footsteps on the stairs. These are sights and sounds that have become routine for Brennan during his time at the Garden, but this afternoon something is different. It isn't the safehouse's operator who emerges into view, a bowl of food and a fist-sized cut of warm French bread for scraping out the bottom — it's Eileen, and she carries not a tray but a heavy coat draped over one arm and a cell phone cradled in the palm of her opposite hand.

It appears as though Kaylee fulfilled her promise. There is little point in returning his personal effects if the Englishwoman plans on killing him. "Get up."

"Good afternoon to you too" He offers, seeming not so enthused by who it is that has descended to the basement. The objects in hand though, get a raise of thick brows and creases of the lines that on a woman might be construed as crows feet. He does as she asks though, lifting his large frame from the cot, unfolding arms and legs pausing only to drop the book on the foot of the bed, right beside a neatly coiled ipod. "I presume I'm a free man now? Or is time to go out back and bullet to the head?"

Eileen responds by slipping the cell phone into the coat's interior pocket. This done, she tosses the garment to Brennan — whether or not he catches it depends on how fast he moves and how sore his joints are. It's no concern of hers, apparently. "Sumter and Thatcher seem to think you can be trusted not to turn us over to the Institute," she says, and clipped words aside there's something about the terse tone of her voice that suggests she doesn't. "Or at least not the first opportunity you get."

"So I get to keep my head for now" His time spent down here was not idle, and he manages to catch it well enough. It's not long after that he's rifling through that pocket, bring out the cellphone, look at it, then slip it back into the pocket. "Maybe you should listen to them. That is why you sent her down here. To find out the truth, and he came to do the same. So I'm free to collect my stuff and what? Exactly?" Though, in truth, he doesn't much trust Eileen either, even more so after Kaylee's comment about 'then there's the others'.

"I want to see Liette. Just once. Same conditions as before, you can have a whole gang of people in the room with me. The institute is going to come for me, and I at least have to be able to say that I saw her and that she's okay"

A small but sardonic smile hooks the corners of Eileen's mouth and transforms the expression on her lips into something cruel and grotesque. She doesn't agree with Scott's decision to release him — that much is clear. "The truth, Brennan, is that you're a liability to this network. You know where our safehouses are, you know who's in charge and you know that we still have Liette. I want to side with the others and believe that you won't tell Broome everything when he asks, but you're a family man. All the Institute has to do is put the pressure on you where it hurts the most.

"So here's the deal. It doesn't matter if he threatens your wife and children, because if I find out you've gone over to them, I'll do the deed myself. Clear?"

Tight jaw and a brusque nod. He's no idiot, not usually. But it seems, that Kaylee, hasn't talked to Eileen. If she had, he's pretty sure that he wouldn't have been handed a coat. "No more a liability than anyone else who gets brought in. You're crystal clear. Same deal stands, I see anyone of the other Ferry members who don't like that you've let me out, or I see you sneaking around my family, It will be the same deal. Stay away from my family. Stay away from me. I don't want part of any Ferryman business"


Negotiations complete, Eileen moves aside, granting Brennan access to the steps. "The girl's waiting upstairs," she says. "One of our people will escort you back across the water and wherever it is you want to go. The Suresh Center. Home. Harkness' orders."

Where he wants to go, he's sure as hell not telling Eileen. There's just a grunt, another nod and he's heading off to the steps that half the time, he never thought he'd actually get to walk up. But he is, out of the cool basement, space heater shut off and off towards wherever Liette is shuffled in. Any anger, resentment and unhappiness is shoved way down into a small corner, the far better to put on a front for Liette, at least for now.

Out of the basement, the Garden doesn't look like it's changed much in the weeks since Brennan has been downstairs, though less populace. He knows that much from the lack of footsteps crossing over his head, from the lack of noise of people living here. Jonas looks a little suspect when Brennan emerges from the basement, his pale, gaunt and redheaded countenance familiar from the doctor's last stand at the Armory. There is, however, some bitterness in his expression, showcased by his rise up off of the sofa and departure without so much as a greeting into the kitchen.

But when Jonas moves off of the sofa, it reveals who is sitting beside him, a smaller, blonder and more waifish frame if ever there was one. With a multi-colored quilt wrapped over her legs and hands tucked beneath it, Liette looks much as Brennan remembers her, though her hair seems brushed straighter and cleaner, less the tangled mess it usually is.

She looks to the stairs, one brow lifting and a smile forming on her lips. Bouncing to her feet, she wobbles a bit unsteadily and cheerfully notes, "Doctor Brennan!" Excitedly clomping over on boots she has yet to shed, Liette moves without haste around the sofa to wait for the doctor to finish coming up the stairs. "What were you doing down in the basement, silly?" There's a wrinkle of her noe and a smile, head tilting to the side with impish innocence.

'hey lee" He offers brightly to the young girl, his arms coming down and wrapping around her, jacket and all. "So good to see you kiddo, wow, lookit that hair, who'd have thought, that under all that blonde and pink scraggly hair, that there was a real live girl huh?" THe demenaor from the basement has dissipated and he's just smiling at her, down at her as he squeezes tight.

"Ahh, well, They didn't like it that I met Pops and Doctor Broome. So they put me in the basement for a bit to make sure that I was telling them the truth and all that" He offers her, pluckign a stray hair from out of her face. "Was down there a little longer than I expected but.. I'm out of there now. Where do they have you? Have they introduced you to a woman with blonde hair like yours? They say she's your mother"

Make the sign language signal I taught you Lee, if you can hear me with your telepathy okay? Not safe for me to talk out loud about some things.

Liette's brows screw up, blue eyes stare vacantly at Brennan and there's a confused expression on her face. Lips parting, Liette's head tilts to the side, "What're you talking about we were just talking about Miss Cat coming over in a little while…" Liette's head cranes to the side, blue eyes looking askance at Brennan, narrowing into a playful squint. "We were making tea…" there's a slow shake of her head and a toothy, goofy smile, "remember?"

Pressing her nose to Brennan's chest, Liette makes a soft, contented sound and then leans back, wrinkling her nose and smiling up impishly at the doctor. "Come on, you said you were going to show me some articles in Pause about Pops before she got heeeere," Liette leans away, wrapping her hands around Brennan's and starting to lean back into a tug.

There's absolute confusion on his face, a glance down to Liette but lets her tug him, trying to figure out what she's talking about. "Yes, when we were together last, we did. I promised that I'd show you your pops in the magazine. He's about… two pages after me I think. He calls you the apples of his eyes. Tea sounds good too lee, we should probably put some on. I missed you Lee. Been worrying about you"

The hell are you up to Lee? Could she even hear him? They'd had her on negation drugs and sedatives. Obviously not sedated anymore but negation drugs still? And how did they have negation drugs? Last he knew, it was either a gas, or something the institute had. Or else he's sure that emergency rooms would have a supply on hand for evolved patients. He follows, ambling after her in the tug.

"Don't be so clingy Doctor Brennan, you're the one who wandered off into the basement!" Chirping cheerily, Liette sways her hands from side to side with Brennan's in hers, and then releases the grip on her way over to the sofa. Swinging her legs over the arms and throwing herself down to sit, Liette's ankles remain propped up as she lazily lays back on the sofa's cushions, folding her hands behind her head and wrinkling her nose as she stares up at the ceiling. That's all well and fine, until she looks over and spots Brennan in her periphery and lets out a noisy shriek.

"D— Doctor Brennan!" Flinging herself up from the sofa, Liette scrambles across the floor and throws her arms around Brennan again, buriying her face in his chest and breathing out a ragged sob. "Oh— Oh my god Doctor Brennan! I— I didn't— I didn't think they were ever gonna' let me see you again!" Liette's tiny shoulders tremble, a bubbling sob hiccups up from her lips and she looks up with wide, teary eyes to her protector.

"D— Doctor Brennan, there's a lady who says she's my mom… my— my real mom. She— she's a nurse who took care of me before, I— D— Doctor Brennan I'm scared." Face bright red, eyes glassy and dribbling with tears, Liette looks like any crying child does; heartbreaking.

More so when everything else is considered.

Eileen watches from the top of the basement stairs, solemn and silent. If the scene playing out on the sofa has any effect on her, it isn't reflected in the expression she wears on her face or in her eyes, which — for all their paleness — appear very dark.

What the hell have they done to her? One minute she's carefree, happy, thinking is was a month, maybe more ago and then she's… looking like a kid who';s gone through hell. Her returns to one again holding her, only this time, holding her tight. "Hey lee" All over again. "Shhh Lee, I know. I met her, just a little. I don't know whether she is or not. I think they're doing tests to find out if she is. Compare DNA"

He drags her over to the couch. "Hey lee, I don't have much time. I can't stay here and they won't let me stay with you. The Ferrymen and I, we're not getting along good… so I have to go and I can't bring you with me, but if she really is your Mom. Well, that's good right? Just a little good. Hey, hey, I met your sister. Looks just like you, but you know what? I prefer you Lee. Your sisters a bit too.. unfriendly for my liking, and your pops says Hi. He really misses you"

There's a strangled noise from Liette as she looks up form Brennan's chest, fingers curling in the fabric of the doctor's shirt. "Doctor Brennan… don't— don't leave me again." There's a tightness in the little girl's throat, wideness to her eyes and fearfulness in her expression. He had been her rock of relative stability in all of this mess, and now he's being pulled away again. "D— Doctor Brennan you— you have to take me back to Pop. Mom can come with me, I know it, she's a special doctor she knows stuff. She— I don't wanna' be here anymore… please."

Trembling like any scared child should in the doctor's arms, Liette presses her face against Brennan's chest. "It— it's not fair." Her fingers curl into his sweater, she rises up onto her toes, and there's a look in her eyes so much the begging kind. "I'm scared… I don't— I'm scared of what's gonna' happen. I've never been away from her this long. It hurts," she offers in a whimper, brows furrowing, "It's so lonely."

"Shh Lee, you're gonna make me cry and then Eileen over there is going to laugh at me. Can't have her laughing at me can you? Nope, No sir, can't have her laughing at me" There's a glance over to the individual in question and maybe out of spite, with that glance is negation, sweet and simple. he doens't know if she can do anything, it's a test maybe, see if she does. It ends, quick as he looks back to Liette, negation turned off.

"I'm scared too Lee. But they think that you should stay here, with them, and with the nurse. But no, it's not fair Lee. Much in this life, is just not fair. But you have to trudge through it, keep your head up and work towards what you want. Remeber how I told you, about the foreign countries and the children who are sent out in the tribes, and they go through trials and hard times adn when they come back, they're considered adults and how this is your trial?"

He's running a hand through her hair, trying to comfort her like he would Marlena or the twins. "Hang in there Lee. You're going to be scared, but I need you to be brave Lee, along with being scared"

Sucking back a sniffle, Liette stares up at Brennan with wide, pale blue eyes. Her fingers unwind from his shirt, her lips stop trembling, and there's a look of confusion on her face when she reaches down to paw at her cheeks. "Why— " she offers a bashful giggle, rubbing at her eyes and her cheeks with the heels of her palms as she takes a few steps away, "why'm I crying?" There's a hiccup of a sob between her words, a bubble of emotion she doesn't understand, and when she pulls her damp hands away from her face, she looks up to Brennan with a lack of understanding.

"Oh I— I'm sorry Doctor Brennan, I cried all over your sweater." Her nose wrinkles, fingers rub against her palms and she hunches her shoulders forward a little, sheepishly. "Are— " she notivces the boots he's wearing, the jacket nearby hanging from the door and Eileen waiting expectantly nearby. "Are we going somewhere?"

She pauses, considers the situation and the expression on his face. "Are you?"

"Lee" There she goes again. "Hold still Lee okay?" Tears wiped from her eyes, he's peering into them, frowning again and worried. NExt comes taking her pulse, limited without his bag or his office. "Eileen, is she still on the negation drugs or was she… taken off them at some point?"

There's a nod though. "Yeah, Yeah Lee, I have to go. I can't stay with you, they're not going to let me." It's like explaining something over and over to an amnesiac.

Realization dawns on his face and quietly, not loud enough for Eileen to hear, he murmurs. "Lee, what day is it?"

Brennan might detect a slight stiffening in Eileen's shoulders, hard tension clamping down around her jaw where there was only a minimal amount before. She noticed.

She also isn't laughing. "No drugs," she tells him, moving out of the basement's yawning doorway and into the room. Brennan's use of his ability didn't escape her attention, and neither has what's going on with Liette. Although her expression remains mostly impartial and her voice low, its tone betrays her concern.

"Uhhh…" Liette purses her lips and furrows her brows, head tilting to the side. "It's uhh… April— fifth? I dunno, I don't have a watch." There's a furrow of Liette's brows, her head tilting to the side slightly. "It's only been a day since we got back from the Brick House, so… if thats' what you're wonderin' about. There's still time for you to 'pologize to Melissa for snapping at her." Rocking back and forth on her heels, Liette eyes the coat rack, then looks back to Brennan with her brows raised, not quite catching everything he says from the looks of it.

There's a blink, confusedly, and Liettels' head tilts to the side. "You'll— you'll be back, right?" Both of Liette's brows lift up, lips creep into a hesitant smile. "I mean, eventually, yeah? We always see each other again, whenever you go off to be sneaky."

"April" This is not April and the look he gives Eileen isn't heavy with negation. Everything seems find, physically speaking and he looks at the young woman thoughtful, not caring that she's pretty much laying out to Eileen that he would sneak out of the house. It wasn't sneaking. He walked out in plain sight all the time. Sometimes though, it wasn't just for fresh air.

His hand comes up to scratch at his jaw, the scruff there and regard the young woman. "Lee, your Telepathy working?" Could maybe the negation drugs be having a strange effect on her? stored in some.. fat in her body that it's only now accessing? She's always been negated from best he could tell, when she's picked up. "Have they been giving her anything else Eileen? Besides the negation drugs and the sedatives?"

"No," Eileen says, circling around behind the sofa to lay one gloved hand on its back. "She hasn't been on either for weeks." She lowers her eyes to the top of Liette's blonde-haired head, then moves them to Brennan's face. The quiet contemplation in his eyes is mirrored in hers, and for a moment she can set aside the fact that they threatened to kill one another in the basement not five minutes ago. "Maybe some sort of negative interaction between abilities?"

Furrowing her brows, Liette looks up at Brennan and swallows noisily. "Telepathy, chemical replication and aerokinesis are all faded…" Liette very studiously comments, that look of nervousness and lonliness back in her eyes. Commentary about the present, something she can latch on to has her working harder again to keep her mind where it belongs. She doesn't seem to realize that her memory is failing though. "I think I still have pyrokinesis but I don't wanna' check it indoors. Everything else should be okay, I mean, it takes five whole months for me to forget an ability…" there's a wrinkle of Liette's nose at that.

It hasn't been five months since she met Cat either.

She hasn't been on anything for weeks. "I need paper Eileen, pen, pencil, something to write with, my bag too. It should still be here, upstairs. Lee, you picked up your telepathy just before I met you. That was two months ago. You told me that your abilities, they last about … five months, why might it last less than that. Besides being here, with me and with the Ferry, could you have lost your telepathy so soon. Did you pass stuff off to your sister? I don't know if you can do that this far away from them" Not that he knew exactly how far away they were from where Julie was being sheltered and cared for.

"You keep thinking it's April Lee, after I promised to show you the pause magazine and your Pop's. Then, you think it's mid may, which is what it is right now. Now, pretend you're with your pops, and you're playing your Theory game hmm? What do you think, could be happening?"

Eileen snaps a look in Jonas' directions and with a sharp lift of her chin gestures to the stairs that lead to the Garden's second floor. "Regan," she says, keeping with her habit of addressing operatives by their surnames in the presence of others, "fetch what he needs." Because she isn't about to leave Liette alone in the same room with Brennan for even one minute, never mind the two or three that it will require to locate a pad of paper, pencil and the bag to which the doctor refers. "Be quick."

"No— No I'm— " Liette furrows her brows, eyes narrowing a touch. Her head tilts to the side, chin sets, and she watches Brennan thoughtfully. "O— Okay, theory. Um," her eyes cast to the side, teeth toy at her lower lip. "I have a Ubiquitous Memory ability from Doctor Cat, and it's… failing?" There's a worried look on her face, teeth tugging at her lower lip. "Um, I— my abilities have a five to six month lifepsan before they're metabolised and my genetic stricture recorrects itself, I— I…" Liette steps closer to Brennan with a little yelp when Jonas goes running past her, circles around to the stairs and thunders up at Eileen's request.

Liette's blue eyes track his movements, then settle back down on Brennan. "I— I don't know um, Pop— Pop said my ability is based on the moasic principal. Which.. um… okay uh— " Liette brings her fingers to her head, massaging slowly. "I— um, it— anything that altered my basic genetic structure or influenced my ability could've altered the decay of the altered genes. Refrain, the Amp, Neurotoxin… possibly environmental exposures to radiation…" her teeth toy with her lower lip, eyes go unfocused as she thinks, chewing on her bottom lip gently.

There's a clunk upstairs, a hiss from Jonas, and then a few rumbling footsteps coming down the stairs. He offers Brennan's bag out to Eileen first, not thinking, then out to Brennan. There's a spiral-bound notebook he thrusts out to Brennan as well, with scribbled writing all over the front. Dominating the front page is the phrase EVERY PROPHET IN HIS HOUSE. "I found this upstairs," Jonas offers a pink sparkly pen with it, "here."

They are on Staten Island. It was evacuated for radiation, but that was then, and this is now. As she lists off theories, he and she playing the game that she and pops had done, the notebook is taken from Jonas without regard for the scribbling all over it. He flips a few pages it, pink sparkly pen uncapped and writing down what the young woman just told him, bag dropped to his feet for now.

"Writing down the theories. She's having alzheimers symptoms. This will keep up from repeating everything we say every two seconds. Lee, Doctor Chesterfields Pamnesia. you got about… a week or two, after you got the telepathy, when did the telepathy leave you?" Scribble scribble her keeps up, reaching over to squeeze the young womans shoulder and smile at her, try to reassure her that it'll all be fine. "What if you haven't had any of the stuff that you adn pops experimented with back at the lab? Would not being on it shorten? THis… amp?"

"What about my telepathy?" Liette looks up, tilting her head to the side as if trying to focus on something, then gets a bit of a startle. "W— wait why— " blue eyes flick from side to side. "Why can't— why're we… um…" wrenching her eyes shut and shaking her head, Liette breathes in slowly and offers a hand with palm flat out to Brennan in a hold on gesture. Trying to recollect herself from the dementia, she looks back up to the doctor and shakes her head slowly.

"About a week ago. I lost my telepathy a week ago, chemical replication two weeks before that." Swallowing dryly, she looks over to Eileen, then to Jonas as the redhead takes a hesitant step back, furrows his brows and looks at Eileen, trying to puzzle out exactly what's going on and why Brennan is still here.

"Doctor Brennan I— I'm having a really hard time putting things together…" now she looks scared, more scared than she did earlier, but at the very least capable of holding herself together. "Her— Cat's ability. Does she forget everything she learned when she's negated? I— oh God I should never have taken this power."

Brennan doesn't know the answer to that question, but there's a glance to Eileen in the hopes that she will know it, even as he's settling his hand around Liette's and doing just that. Holding on to it. "It'll be okay Lee. It'll be okay. We'll figure it out, we'll get it dealt with, I promise"

"She isn't very lucid when negated," Eileen says, and leaves it at that. It isn't a conversation she's had with Catherine before, but it's looking like one she needs to have now. "I have a friend who's like you," she tells Liette, her grip on the back of the couch tightening with a soft creak of worn leather. "His abilities don't go away, but someone took them from him once. He used to be able to remember things, too, and he's all right. Would it help if I brought him in to talk to you?"

And if talking doesn't help, maybe Gabriel's intuitive aptitude will.

Blue eyes move from Brennan to Eileen when she finally speaks up more than a clipped word here or there. There's a tilt of Liette's head, and for the time being she seems to be more lucid than not. Clearing her throat, the young girl takes a step closer to Brennan and wraps an arm around his waist, rising up onto her toes and pressing her nose to the center of his chest before settling back down again, sending her attention to Eileen.

"If you think he'd be helpful… yeah." There's a faint smile on Liette's lips, appreciative. Now it looks like she understands the scope and scale of things that're going on, a vaccilation in her maturity from moments ago. "If— if you could, I'd 'preciate it, um…" there's a squint when Liette realizes she can't remember Eileen's name, and she's not sure if they've just not ever been introduced, or if she's losing her mind again.

The blonde's jaw tenses, and she just smiles away the name, looking down to the floor and blinking away tears. She's experiencing what it's like to have pieces of who she is slipping thorugh her fingers like threads of smoke.

"Shhh Lee" Strong arms wrapping around the young girl again, notebook put down on his bag and pen tossed so he can grip the young woman. He doens't seem to care that Eileen is there and see's him acting in a manner befitting a parent as opposed to disgruntled physician just freshly let out of the basement as he rocks her side to side, hand rubbing up and down her back. "Listen. I can't stay long, but I'll stick around a couple days if Eileen lets it. Keep an eye on you, see if it's Chesterfields ability or whether it's something else. Might be the ability that's just going away and you might need a day or two to adjust. She can get her friend in, he can help. Sounds like he's someone who might know what you're going through. I'll try and fill you in on what you and I did the last month okay? Since you can't seem to remember the last month. But I'm not going to be allowed to stay longer than that Lee, and I won't feel comfortable staying longer than that. You'll get through this though, okay?"

Already, Eileen is taking into consideration what additional security measures she'll have to enact. Locking him in the basement with a cot was one thing. Allowing him to roam the safehouse freely with Liette around is quite another. "You'll sleep on opposite ends of the cottage," she concedes. "Operatives posted outside your doors after dark, supervision during daylight hours. If you're going to stay here, then Fournier and Raith will too."

Tiny is the smile, the one offered to Eileen from Liette, but the small young woman offers a nod of her head in thoughtful consideration before looking up to Brennan. "Thank you…" she whispers with a troubled expression, knowing that staying here with her means that much less time that he will get to have with his family, during all of the chaos that is going on outside in this weather. But at least the comfort of knowing that he'll be here, and that Eileen has a friend who might be able to help is there. It may be small comfort, but comfort none the less.

"Since Doctor Brennan is staying, I'll go put on some tea…" Liette offers in a tiny voice, ducking her head down into a sheepish nod as she starts to make her way for the kitchen. Jonas offers a nervous look over the frames on his sunglasses, irises glowing a bright red. One brow lifts and he turns his attention to Eileen.

"I'll… um…" he jerks a thumb over his shoulder, grimacing awkwardly before backpedaling towards the door. "I'll go, you know…"

"Make sure she doesn't burn the house down."

Really, the only difference between when he stayed here before and now, is that he's not wanting to be a member of the ferry. Semantics really. And that he kicked the ass of a Super Strength old guy who hit him first. He just put him down and finished the fight. "Tea would be good Lee. You go make some" Jonas is making motions to go too and he waits till they're gone to start negotiation with Eileen.

"Same room" Brennan counters. "Fournier and Raith are fine, has DNA come back as to whether they're really related? Or just their word. I mean, what am I going to do Eileen, negate everyone to death and run away with her? If I was going to do that, I wouldn't have come back with the ultimatum that the Institute laid out, I would have just brought them here. It's gone beyond the time that I was told I had to bring her back. Whatever they're going to do, they've done or are getting ready to do it. I"m screwed to hell and back the moment I leave this door and don't even know if my wife and children are still at the Suresh Center or whether the institute made off with them. I got nothing to benefit from, it's too cold to even make it two feet with her Eileen"

"Separate rooms," Eileen shoots right back. "You said you didn't want anything to do with the Ferry anymore, and this is Ferry business. I don't have to allow you to stay here at all." The kitchen isn't far from the den; she keeps her words quiet, if pointed, and does not raise her voice to a level at which Jonas or Liette might hear. "Thatcher could have been killed bringing your message to Harkness," she says. "Power's out across the city. Even if we had a lab at our disposal, it's impossible for us to run any checks with the weather like it is. As for you making off with her, you didn't seem to have a problem with it at the Armory. You had a plan, if I recall."

"I had a plan because I didn't know about what was on the roof, because I was supposed to take care of her. I'm not going to rehash what went down at the armory. That was a mess of epic proportions and my plan backfired because of a blocked stairwell. Same rooms. You had to sedate and negate her Eileen. She trusts me and is comfortable with me. You may call her Ferry business, but she's still my business too. As for Thatcher, I didn't hold a gun to her head and send her out there. She was going anyways, and came down early in the morning to tell me that she was leaving and would try and make sure to talk to Harkness. So don't go pinning whatever happened to Kaylee on me"

"Either you agree to the conditions of the arrangement that has generously been offered to you, or you walk out the door right now." The volume of Eileen's voice remains as steady as ever. The same cannot be said of its intensity — the harder Brennan pushes, sharper and fiercer it gets. "I won't be browbeaten into backing down from my position by a third-rate hack who thinks he knows what's best for the world because he's practiced medicine across it. If you knew anything at all, you'd be able to recognize that you're standing in the middle of one of those warzones you've been raking in royalties just for writing about."

"You're the first person to ever actually compare this to that, like I have" Something Eileen probably didn't expect replaces the other emotions that have been on his face. An honest to god smile as he offers his hand to her, shake on the deal. "Only, it was much warmer out there, than it is here and you're the second person that I know who's actually read the book" Which is a surprise. "Deal"

The look Eileen is giving Brennan's hand isn't just dubious. It's caustic. She takes it nonetheless, the leather of her glove cool and smooth against his palm, and curls her fingers around his to clinch it. While they're being honest: "I didn't like it."

Or maybe she's just being a bitch.

"You're allowed to. Obviously, others didn't either cause it sure as hell didn't make the times list." He shrugs "I didn't actually write it. They just took my journals and the like, edited it and shoved it into a book and slapped me on the cover. But" It's no wimpy handshake, Two pumps, then lets go.

'I'm going to go have tea with Liette, try to keep Jonas from choking me and run Lee through her mental paces to get an idea of what's happening in her head and if it is Chesterfields ability. Try and get her to the point where.. either state, she's on the same page. Do I have permission to go or should I wait to be fitted with a GPS anklet?"

The closest thing Brennan receives to permission is a derisive curl of Eileen's lip, however, slight. She shows him her back a moment later, and retreats into one of the darkened hallways without a glance over her shoulder.

There's yet another bulletin to draft.

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