Collective Problems


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Scene Title Collective Problems
Synopsis When Elisabeth Harrison comes to make a request of Sarisa, she discovers that the collective problems of FRONTLINE are mounting just as high as her own.
Date April 15, 2010

Textile Factory 17

Morning typically means quiet at Textile Factory 17. With the lion's share of FRONTLINE's work being done in assisting the National Guard in mundane crisis throughout the city, typical mornings include PT runs by team members and Sarisa pulling her hair out over Diego and Prince's choices to take a leave of absence once the weather clears.

Today is nothing like that.

Several black sedans parked in the grounds of the factory beyond its battlements and castle-like walls indicate high-profile visitors, their government plates give a feeling of something more foreboding approaching in the weather. On her way through the ground floor of the Factory, Elisabeth Harrison finds the tactical floor filled with suits, all of them wearing visible Department of Homeland Security badges on their chests. Thorugh the glass wall and into the infirmary, the entirety of Squad-01 looks to be receiving medical assessment by additional doctors, and there is a buzz of activity in the "nerve center" of FRONTLINE's operations.

"I want every single man we have on this moving around the clock, I want to know if anyone so much as matching Agent Hanson's appearance so much as breathes outside!" The steel-haired profile of DHS Operations Director Matthew Parkman is one that evokes a sense of both respect in the way he commands authority, and fear for the ability he has to steal thoughts.

Standing on the spiral staircase looking down on the nerve center, Sarisa Kershner has arms folded and chin tipped down, brows furrowed and blue eyes leveled on the top of Parkman's head. On spotting Elisabeth coming through the front doors, the blonde psychometric leader of New York's FRONTLINE branch waves to get Harrison's attention and then curls one gloved finger silently in a beckoning motion before turning to head up the stairs and out of sight of Parkman and his DHS operatives.

Whatever has been happening the last two days has been anything but normal, if Squad-01 looks like they got put through the wringer.

Having suits in the factory is strange enough. Having Matthew Parkman in the building ratchets Elisabeth's stress levels into the stratosphere. Not like it used to, but … it's still something she's wary of. She passes behind the man with every evidence of an expression of calm, heading up the stairs toward her boss, stripping off her gloves and hat, unzipping her jacket as she clomps through. Clearly she was out on a run of some kind, but she wanted to speak with her supervisor anyway.

As she heads up the stairs, Liz slants a glance downward once more, her brows pulling together as she studies Squad 1's state. Then she steps into the conference room where Kershner waits, and instead of immediately launching into conversation, she waits for the other woman to volunteer whatever is on her mind first. She only asks simply, "Are they okay?" She's become …. not really fond of, but she has great respect for the members of the first squad.

"Squad One got called in by Agent Hanson from Home-Sec…" Sarisa notes quietly, standing behind her desk, blue eyes nervously focused out the narrow tower window there. When she turns, those blue eyes have more worry in them than Elisabeth has seen since Operation Apollo. "What I say doesn't leave this office, I think you understand that." Turning slowly, Sarisa keeps her arms folded across her chest, posture rigid and back straight.

"Agent Hanson was investigating the murders that looked like Sylar-style copycats. She found out from a tipster that Sylar's apparently gained some sort of self-replication ability, and has been using his shape-shifting to appear as a number of people." There's an askance glance to the darkened television screen at her right, then back to Liz. "One of them was staying at the Lighthouse Orphanage on Staten Island. Hanson went in with FRONTLINE to peacefully arrest the clone, but it turned into an all-out melee. One of the children was hurt, property damage… since it happened on Staten Island we're keeping the press off of it, but it was a colossal blunder. On top of that, Sylar seems to have kidnapped agent Hanson."

If Elisabeth didn't know any better, it might sound like Sarisa has a tone of jealousy in her voice. "Squad One lost two suits of Horizon Armor in the confrontation and two more suits had their helmet systems destroyed. Spalding is— unsurprisingly— better off than the rest. Wright, and Wade have some injuries that will be sidelining them for a week if not more, the same with Bentley. This leaves us short handed, and to top off matters Parkman has come in to handle Hanson's recovery personally before it becomes a media shit-storm."

Good Christ. Elisabeth stares at Sarisa, her brows yanking together in a frown over her brows. "It's not actually Sylar," she finally tells her boss quietly. "It's a clone of the original Sylar. Seems like one of those things that we never want to hear someone say, but apparently it's the whole evil twin syndrome for real." She sighs heavily, shoving a hand through her matted hair — the hat did a number on it. "I learned about the clone situation a couple of days ago. The Gabriel that survived Antarctica made contact about the situation, told Claire that if she was approached to shoot first and ask questions later."

Elisabeth pauses and says quietly, "I didn't know about the shapeshifting thing, though. Christ."

"It's the real Sylar." Sarisa states flatly, brows furrowed and chin tilted up. "He survived, and unfortunately for him his apparent death in Antarctica means his pardon didn't go through. A little piece of red tape that's caused a great deal of trouble for us…" Blue eyes cast to the television screen again, and Sarisa is circling around her desk. "There's more than one of him, and they're not cooperating, and if this situation continues to spiral out of control like it is I might need your help and the help of your librarians in remedying it off the books."

One dark brow lifted, Sarisa closes the distance between herself and Elisabeth. "I want you to keep that in the back of your mind, that there may come a time I need you to do a few things off the record for me, and in return I keep turning heads away from looking at your little book club, alright?" There's a purse of Sarisa's lips into a smile, and this close her voice is much more hushed in an unnervingly intimate way. "Now…"

The blonde lowers her eyes to the floor, then back up to Elisabeth. "You're still on leave from your… cold?" Sarisa's head tilts to the side, blue eyes narrowing. "That means you're here because you wanted something, since you weren't aware of what happened to the team before hand. What can I do for you, Elisabeth?"

Well, shit. Yeah, that's bad. "I knew Gabriel survived, but again I'll tell you — the one that actually WENT to Antarctica is not the one causing the problem. That Gabriel is attempting to stop the one killing people." Elisabeth shrugs slightly. "Take my intel in the light you see fit, I can't make you see it my way or give the man the benefit of the doubt." Her blue eyes on her boss are steady as she says mildly, "Though frankly, considering the fact that he did approach Claire instead of just letting her get ganked by someone she might let close because he looks like a guy she fought back to back with for months, it's my opinion that you should give the benefit of the doubt to the original one."

And a change of topic. "No, ma'am, I was back on duty this morning, actually. I just got back from a supply run with a Guard troop. It's getting worse out there — as if you didn't already know that — and I was going to catch lunch before I came to you. We think we may have a way to lure Dreyfus out that will give us the benefit of surprise rather than the obvious lure that includes the squads. And since Squad 1 is out of the picture, it seems an auspicious time to mention it." Elisabeth shoves her gloves into the pocket of her winter coat, her tone calm and businesslike. "If it works out, then the squads don't have to get involved in the situation. If it doesn't work out, it'll go one of two ways — we'll all be dead and Dreyfus is still on the loose for you to handle, or you'll have all the ammunition you need to make a big deal of arresting me for vigilante or terrorist actions to then use me as the lure."

Lips pursed together and a smile creeping up at the corners of her lips, Sarisa just nods her head once and slowly turns her back to Elisabeth. "Spalding is still in good condition, Crow-Dog should be alright, that's two and provided I can get Varlane and Crawford off of Guard duty that will be a full enough contingent. I think Spalding's looking to get his hands dirty again anyway…" Pausing a few pauces from Liz at the front of her desk, Sarisa turns back around and folds her hands behind her back as she turns.

"Sounds like you've got an idea how this works then, good. Keep me off the page for the details of the plan, easier for me to presume not knowing what was going to happen if I— well— don't know what's going to happen." Cracking a smile, Sarisa scoots back and sits on the front of her desk, hands to either side of herself and one leg crossing over the other.

"Go ahead with your plan, and keep me informed if it works or fails. You have my direct line, so I expect prompt informing." With that caveat noted, Sarisa lifts one gloved hand to tuck a lock of blonde hair behind one ear. "Good to know you're back in the suit, though, Elisabeth. We can use everyone we can get out there right now with most of Squad One in traction."

"Yes, ma'am," Elisabeth says quietly. And then she quirks a faint half smile at the corner of her lips. It's not like she unused to keeping things from people, but she does sort of feel she's finally getting the hang of how much Sarisa needs to know and which information she needs bits and pieces of. It's all about learning the ground rules. "I'll have the information to you as soon as I have it — and I'll give a 'don't hear from me' timeframe as well. Just in case." As in 'assume the worst if you don't hear from me by such-and-such a time.

Watching Sarisa, Elisabeth pauses and then asks, "Are they going to need a healer? I can't call on Abby anymore, obviously — but there has to be someone in the registry with an ability nearly as powerful. We could get them up and going more quickly."

"Daniel Linderman, a woman named Emilie Sinclair in San Jose California but her ability can't repair damage that the body isn't already trying to heal — It has to be fresh injuries — and Marcus Stark in Salt Lake City, Utah who's ability is more of a biological rebalancing that bolsters natural healing. Three registered healers publicly visible in all of the United States as of today." Tipping her chin up and offering an askance look to Elisabeth, Sarisa lowers her lashes down to halfway hide her eyes, regarding Liz through that dark fringe.

"Unless of course you count the miracle healer from St.Luke's, but it turns out his ability is a bit more than meets the eye. The Company just brought him in after a jurisdictional wrestling match with the Department of Homeland Security." One of Sarisa's brows lift, "I could pull some strings to get him to help Squad One, but I'm not willing to pay his, ah— fee."

Mentally filing away the names for later use, Elisabeth queries mildly, "Do I want to know what his fee is? It sounds ominous when you put it that way."

"Let's just say that you really better want someone healed, because the price of Darren Stevens' healing on the conscience is a biblical one, eye for an eye type stuff." Sarisa lifts her shoulders into a shrug, uncrossing her legs and letting her feet swing back and forth in front of her before crossing them in an opposite manner from before. "So, as it stands currently, we're relegated to the individuals we have access to on the Registry and none of them are exactly tasteful options, short of owing Mr.Linderman a favor."

"Well, quite frankly, I'd be going well out of my way to avoid that," Elisabeth replies easily. "He's a sonuvabitch. I'm sorry there's not anyone on the registry who can help our guys." She's sincere in that. "You might try Mrs. Hadley — she runs a bakery down in the city, or she used to. She's on the registry too, and I know her ability only works on Evos, which won't be a problem in this case. I don't know if she may have left town or even gotten sick with Evo flu or something herself, but …" Elisabeth shrugs a little. "It's a thought, anyway." She turns to go. "I'll let you know what happens with the Russians."

That commentary earns a frown from Sarisa, brows furrowed and blue eyes diverted down to her feet. "Estrid Hadley passed away over a month ago," Sarisa notes, blue eyes lifting back up to Elisabeth. "I'm… sorry, if you knew her. I recall noticing her name removed from the Registry, it's unfortunate, I hear she was a bright woman and close to your friend."

Watching Elisabeth head towards the door, Sarisa looks up from the floor, blue eyes scrutinizing the blonde for a moment. "Keep an eye out there, Harrison. If the weather and the Russians don't get you, there's a lot of bad things stalking the streets these days that might." Some knowing concern lingers at the periphery of Sarisa's expression, but she pushes it away with a feigned smile.

There's a moment of shock, and Elisabeth's expression looks as if she took a hit to the stomach. "She… was incredible. Helped me when I needed it. And she was a friend of Richard's, yes. Fostered a lot of kids over the years. I'm sorry to hear that she died." Hesitating at the doorway, she turns to look at the woman. For a long moment, she says nothing as she studies Sarisa. And when she finally does speak, she asks quietly, "Mind if I ask how you found out that he survived eating a nuke? Just out of curiosity."

"A good girl never kisses and tells," is all Sarisa says in answer, smile crooked on her lips as her head tilts to the side in feigned sweetness. "Have a good day Harrison."

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