An Echo Of Thunder, Part I



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Scene Title An Echo of Thunder, Part I
Synopsis Haunted by what Cyrus Karr told her, Kaylee Thather reaches out to a ghost in the machine…
Date November 11, 2014


A grouping of mismatched candles sit huddled in the center of small table made for four, flames flicker lazily casting soft light across the weary features of Kaylee Thatcher. Hair done up, makeup in place, a dress of deep reds. Two places have been set at the table, but she is the sole occupant. Food sits cold on plates, steak and whatever else she made to go with it, waiting for an evening that just doesn’t come.

One the table is a small present. Today, was an important dinner.

Reluctantly, Kaylee’s eyes lift to the nearby clock. It was going on half past eleven and still Luther was nowhere to be seen. Even though she knows that sometimes work does this to them, she had checked and double checked to make sure that he would be there. He told her he wouldn’t miss it for anything.

What the hell does Pinehearst do that keeps a janitor like Luther out till nearly midnight?

Pushing the plate away from her, Kaylee props her elbows on the table and buries her face in her hands. This was just another in a long line of things that had started to breed paranoia into Kaylee. What was he hiding from her? What did he really do for Pinehearst? Another part of her rebelled at these questions, because of what it could mean. Her heart being broken again.

A little chime of music, pulls her out of her misery a little. Picking up the phone she can’t help but see a text from Colette.

How did it go? Did he like it?

The telepath didn’t have the energy to answer it and starts to put the phone down again. However, something tickles at the back of her mind. A memory. She finds herself staring at the phone for a long moment, debating if she should follow the instructions of a criminal.

Sudden curiosity wins out and she slides her finger across the face of her phone and pulls up the phone app. Wetting her lips with the tip of her tongue, she presses the call button. Without typing a things, she softly says. “I’d like to talk to Robin Hood.” There is a moment before she adds, “Cyrus Karr says you can provide proof that Pinehearst is involved with illicit activities.”

She felt ridiculous talking to a damn dial tone.

Except, she isn’t.

The television in the living room turns on by itself, showing nothing but digital noise at first. Then, a moment later, a grainy video begins to play of a man strapped to a chair in a concrete-walled basement. It’s cell phone footage, and a doctor is circling the man — dressed in military fatigues — and preparing to administer an injection.

«Formula clinical trials, Icarus Batch 7, Trial 4.»

Then, a voice erupts from Kaylee’s phone that is both digital noise and a synthesized voice. »Follow the Yellow Brick Road, Officer.« All the lights go out in Kaylee’s home at once, save for a staggered sequence of lamps and night lights that lead to the living room where the video continues to play.

The sudden sound of the tv turning on in the living room makes the detective physically jerk with surprise. A shot of cold reality slices through her and leaves her breathless. IT takes her a moment to realize that she is already half out of her chair, body perfectly still as if waiting for an attack… for something.

That something comes the voice on the other end. A cautious glance goes to the phone, then to the lamps. Blue eyes following the pattern as they try to lead her towards the living room. Didn’t all horror movies start like this?

Well, she asked for this. Didn’t she? Might as well see it through. So much like those stupid teeny-boppers… Kaylee decides to follow.

Slowly rising to her feet, phone to her ear, Kaylee trails after the lights; listening to the noise on the other end. When she comes out of the kitchen, her attention is riveted on the TV. “Formula? Icarus?” She asks curiously, moving around the couch. Brushing her dress under her, she sits down on her couch. Fingers searching for and finding the remote so that she can turn up the sound some.

Whoever it is, they have her attention.

The doctor on the video administers an injection into the restrained soldier’s right bicep. «Subject: Daselles, Trent. Volunteer.» Whatever the soldier is being injected with is faintly pink in color and softly luminous. It glows hot in his veins, and he lets out an agonized cry as his head throws back and jaws clench shut. A moment later he begins convulsing, and then breaks out of the restraints with a display of superhuman strength.

«Subject displays immediate Evolved expression, manifesting as superhuman strength.» Trent steps toward the doctor, flying into a fit of rage and grabs him by the head. There’s a howling scream of pain and terror from the doctor a moment before his head crumples like a crushed watermelon, pinkish red fluid oozing out between Trent’s fingers along with tufts of hair. «Aggression appears to be… elevated,» the impassive voice narrating the video explains, followed by the test subject smashing his fists against rapidly cracking glass.

«Let’s start over.» The voice on the video proclaims, followed by a rush of fire filling the glass-walled cell from vents in the ceiling. Trent is set ablaze, howling as his flesh ignites and hs crumples into a writhing, flailing heap on the ground. The video pauses there, on a blurry and close-up view of fire and smoke.

Eyes widen as the test subject on the screen starts thrashing about and the screams fill the living room, but she can’t look away. A hand covers her mouth as it continues. It all seems so surreal. Already her mind is trying to compensate for the horror she is watching. Trying not to think too hard about how the man’s head just crumples with little resistance, like some overripe melon. By time the video pauses, Kaylee feels ill.

She hears what the voice is asking, even if the phone has pulled away from her ear some, but she doesn’t feel comfortable answering that question, yet.

“How do I know this is even from Pinehearst?” Kaylee asks once she knows she has her emotions under control. What she was being shown, in her mind wouldn’t even stand up in court. “How could I even think to base an investigation off that? For all I know this could be anyone. Any group.”

The voice on the other end of her phone refuses to budge. The television turns off.

«Where’s Cyrus?»

There is a soft curse as the TV turns off, though in some ways it is a relief at the same time since it also meant she didn’t have look at that image. For now anyhow. Staring at the black screen, her brows furrow thinking back to the day she captured a known terrorist.

Relenting finally, Kaylee sighs heavily through her nose. “I don’t know,” she reluctantly admits. It was why she hesitated before. “He disappeared after I turned him over for in-processing.” Leaning forward, hand pressing to her forehead, she continues her confession, “I looked for him, tried to find a chain of custody; but I was told to drop it. The Feds probably have him in some black hole, he is considered a terrorist after all.”

Of course, it occurs to her that — “You’re the technopath… can’t you just find that information out?” The fact that she is being asked sends up a red flag.

«I’m a technopath, not a mind-reader. Not everything is digital these days. Especially not secrets.»

The television flicks on again and Kaylee finds another cell phone video of a ditch full of oblong white plastic bags being covered by dirt. Raid hills in the distance and brown terrain marks it as somewhere in the American Southwest. The bags look like bodies, the ditch looks like a mass grave.

«I can't make you trust me. But Pinehearst has been experimenting on people for years, performing illegal genetic modifications, hiding the evidence.»

The video stops.

«Cyrus was trying to save a woman who was wrongfully accused of a crime she didn't commit, so she could be silenced. You helped them capture her.»

The television now displays security camera footage from the mall the day of April's capture. Kaylee sees herself, grainy and out of focus, arresting Cyrus.

«I know your loyalties, Officer Thatcher.»

Then another security camera video, this time from a business showing a street. Kaylee sees herself, even though her hair looks a shade too dark. She's on a street corner talking to… Peter Petrelli? They winter a cab together, which speeds off.

«You can't trust the Petrellis.»

“You have a point,” Kaylee concedes about secrets.

When the new video starts, Kaylee rises to her feet and moves closer to the the TV, her bare feet are silent on the tightly woven carpet. She kneels in front of it, the skirt of her dress flaring out around her. Blue-eyes watch the screen with interest.

“But do you have anything — “ The video stops and switches over and she sees herself.

“Look. What — ” She starts to try and defend her actions when the video changes again.

She blinks. Brows fall into a frown, confused. Leaning forward, she tries to get a better look at the woman who looks just like her. “Whoa whoa… go back. When was this taken?” She sits back on her heels. “I don’t remember this? Are you faking video of me? Cause I sure as shit don’t work for Pinehearst.” She pulls the phone away from her ear and looks at it with irritation, even if she can’t see them. “I’ve never met Peter Petrelli in my life.” A bold face lie really… but only Demsky knew that truth. He kept what happened that night from everyone, but in return made her promise to make a change. Which she did. “What game are you playing?”

«The only game I play is EverNow andthey keep banning me. Assholes.»

The lights in the apartment flicker, and then the power normalizes and everything comes back on at once.

«You put a good man in prison, Kaylee. If he's disappeared, there's only one place Cyrus Karr could be.»

On the television, the image flickers and changes, then shows a satellite photo of a desert and a walled compound.

«You want proof?»

Coordinates begin to type across the screen.

«That’s your proof.»

“I’ve heard it’s a good game, but when the hell do ever have time,” Kaylee sighs out with a shake of her head. Any other thoughts are dashed away as the lights flicker again. “Bet you’re fun at Halloween.”

The TV changes again and she realizes what she looking at, “Hold on…” She climbs to her feet and snags a pen and a pad of paper off the counter. The phone on speaker, she lays it down so that she can write down the numbers. Once they have been scrawled on the paper, she reads them a few times and looks at the TV screen with the satellite image. There is a look of determination that comes over her. She had leave on the books. Plenty that she saves up for those times she can escape with Luther. “I’ll do it,” Kaylee states firmly. “I’ll need a way in though.”

She glances at the phone, starts to ask him for help, but then stops. He owes her nothing. Kaylee sighs out heavily, “Look. For what it's worth, I’m sorry, the only excuse for any of it, is simply: I was doing my job and not for Pinehearst either. For the people. All I ever have wanted to do was protect and serve the people.” She points to the screen, “If this is true and this is proof of Pineheart being everything y’all have been saying, then I’ve failed my job.”

Kaylee picks up the phone and takes it off of speaker, tucking it to her ear. “I know you don’t owe it to me, but I have a feeling I could use the help getting into whatever this is.”

«You’re a telepath, you can read minds according to your Unity Registry. You can implant thoughts too. You don't need my help..»

The voice in her phone takes on a somewhat indignant tone.

«It’s a secret prison, one where the prisoners are guinea pigs for Pinehearst's experiments.»

Finally, Robin Hood adds a warning.

«if you don't go alone, don't bring people loyal to Pinehearst. It'll get you killed..»

“You say that like I do that all the time,” Kaylee is just as indignant back. “It’s against the law for one thing….” She’s worked hard to not be that person, with only an occasional slip up.

There is a bit of discomfort at the mention of bringing people and she has a feeling who he means with that last bit. Luther. She wouldn’t involve a mere janitor, anyhow. If he was a janitor. This wasn’t even a police matter…. yet. This was something that could potentially get her fired. That thought has her pausing, a look goes to the TV again. But… would her mentor be able to stand by either? What would Judah do?

That question, gives her an idea of who she should take.

“Don’t worry. I have someone in mind and I am certain she isn’t working for Pinehearst.” She huffs out a sigh, “I don’t need a lot of people,” Only Colette… One of the only people besides Luther that she trusted. Her best friends wife was another.

”Plus implanting smaller truths are easier than trying to hide a group in plain sight,” Kaylee admits, as she realizes she it going to have to be that person again.

«Once you see it, you'll understand us.»

Robin Hood doesn't bother to clarify what he means by that.

«I’ll be watching.»

Call Ended

Pulling the cellphone away from her ear, Kaylee looks at it with mild disapproval, especially about watching her. “Of course, you will… Cause that’s not creepy at all.” The phone is dropped on the table and the coordinates are picked up and scrutinized. The now darkened TV gets another look, her own reflection staring back at her. “What have you gotten yourself into, Kaylee Ann.”

Her gaze goes to the phone again. Still no text from Luther, even now. Her jaw clenches suddenly as tears prickle at the corners of her eyes. She tries hard to trust him, but then something like today happens.

Picking up the phone, she calls up a number, but it isn’t Luther’s. It’s late, but she needed to not be there. “Hey, Colette.” Hearing her friends voice makes her choke up a little. “Can I come over? Can I crash on y’all’s couch? Think Tam will be okay with that? I— I need to not be here when Luther comes home, else I might get arrested for domestic abuse.” It was a bland attempted at cop humor. The tone is there, but the heart isn’t into it. Her head tips down to look at the notepad and the numbers written on it. “Plus, something came up… I need your help.”

Seems she had a trip to plan.

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