Brainwashed is as Brainwashed Does


claude_icon.gif helena_icon.gif

Scene Title Brainwashed is as Brainwashed Does
Synopsis During one of their training sessions, Helena asks for Claude's advice about Peter.
Date October 5, 2008

Deveaux Building — Roof

It's an early, crisp morning, perhaps a bit crisper than some would like, but as is the usual, Helena is on top of the Deveaux building bright and early so Claude can inflict his brand of training on her. As usual, while she waits she waters the pigeons, but there's a palpable air of frustration about her today.

For once, Claude appears without an attempt to bop Helena on the head unexpectedly, or any of that fun stuff. He reenters visibility leaning against a corner of the coop, the usual weapons of choice held in one hand and resting over his shoulder. "Such a long face. What's the matter, wanted to sleep in today? Poor you." He hasn't slept in since he got out of his cell! And look at how cheerful and happy he looks. If a bit scruffy.

"The Company has Peter. They brain washed him, and he's working for them now." Helena replies stiffly, pushing herself off the coop. "We need to get him back. Don't worry, I don't automatically include you in that "we". Though I don't know how we're going to get him back from them." Her tone turns bitter. "Our first raid went so well."

Claude 's show of confidence doesn't fade, despite hearing what should be very bad news. "Brainwashed him?" He asks incredulously once Helena finishes. "Well then why would you want him back? Wouldn't make him very happy, would it."

Helena lifts a brow. "Like they couldn't?" she asks. "Brainwash him I mean. Brainwashing can be reversed. Brainwashing can be fixed. God knows what else they're doing to him. They're letting him out, though. One of PARIAH's people spotted him in a restaurant with a handler or a partner. Didn't know who he was." She moves to stand in a ready stance, feet apart. "I have a question for you."

Claude gives a shrug, before letting the sticks slide off of his shoulder so he can set them down against the coop. If Helena didn't know better, she might as well have thought he didn't know Peter at all, with the lack of interest he's showing. "Well, I am here to teach your sorry arse, so questions should be expected."

"When the fine fine agents of the Company try to get into your brain," she asks, mouth pursing like she's been sucking on a lemon, "How do you keep them out?"

Claude 's grin reappears. "That would depend on what kind of 'into your brain' you're talking about, mate. The mindreaders are easily batted away with a good song or inside-chanting." He taps the side of his own head. "The Company agents will have people who can do you one better than that, of course, but trying to block those would take years of training. Even then, it's a challenge." And he'd know.

"What do you mean by one better?" Helena asks curiously. "During the raid, at one point it seemed like Elle Bishop was standing where this one PARIAH member used to be, and she was standing where Elle used to be. And there was an Asian woman in a lab coat who seemed to swap places with Suresh. Elle was busy slinging lightning, so I figured the woman in the lab coat either did some kind of teleporting thing, or created an illusion, or she got in my head. Does that sound familiar?"

Claude nods. "Not all mindreaders will stick to just reading. Some of them don't think reading is quite intrusive enough and decide to try and reorganize a little, and some of them succeed. I wouldn't rule an illusion out." Brow creasing slightly, he crosses his arms over his chest. "The labcoat woman, what did she look like?"

Helena considers a moment. "Asian. Pretty. Long hair, but I think it was bunned up. She seemed really innocuous, which is usually an indication of someone who isn't in that kind of circumstance. One of our people figured she might be a doctor, or a lab tech."

Claude 's eyes roll upward as he thinks, but he shakes his head. "Not a clue. The only telepaths I can remember from back in the day have either died or suffered a worse fate. Has to be a new face."

Helena is still frowning. "Okay." she says. "But if there are techniques for keeping this people out of my brain, I want to know them. Even if it takes me forever to learn, some semblance of useful is better than none at all. Or do I just have to stick to nursery rhymes and multiplication tables?"

"The Galaxy Song does wonders." Claude replies, beaming at what are probably the memories of a Monty Python-style thwarting of a telepath. "But speaking of semblances of useful— how're you planning to get your Peter back, then? Storming in there instead of letting him come to you?"

"Like that worked so well the first time." Helena repeats her earlier sentiment, and shakes her head. "I think for right now since he's being let out, we're going to watch places we think he'd go and already know he's been seen in. His apartment, the Petrelli mansion, a few other places. I'm not sure what else to do." She hates seeming weak in front of Claude, but confesses, "If you have any suggestions, I'd be grateful."

"Treat him as he is." Claude replies instantly. "Brainwashed is as brainwashed does, and you don't want to be getting touchy feely with him as long as he thinks you're the enemy. Anything you want to discuss is something that can be talked about when his brain's back in order."

That is clearly not the advice that Helena wants to hear, but she acknowledges it, fighting to keep control of her emotions. "One of our people is a power null. If we can manage to get ahold of Peter, hopefully we'll have him on hand."

Claude's eyebrows lift slightly. How convenient. He's almost impressed. "Take him with you when you do finally go for the mark. Keep him as close as possible without putting him in danger."

Helena nods. "That's the plan." Unless she manages to encounter Peter on her own. In which case, Claude will have ample reason to remark upon her stupidity. "So anyway." She holds out her hands. "I bet you're missing the part where you beat me black and blue." Her tone turns wry. "Shall we get to it?"

October 4th: To Fool an Inquisition
October 5th: Pigeons in the Park
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