Components, Interlude


broome_icon.gif harper_icon.gif

Scene Title Components, Interlude
Synopsis Director Simon Broome approaches Desmond Harper about the progress of his plans.
Date July 13, 2010

Commonwealth Institute

Sunlight shines through high glass windows and the domed skylight within the lobby of the Commonwealth Institute's ground floor. These white-painted halls are like a post-modern monastery, silent and ascetic in their qualities. The one patch of dark in the otherwise brightly lit and painted lobby is a lone man, his navy blue long-coat thrown over one arm, black clothing an inky line that defines the silhouette of his body.

Desmond Harper is not out of place here, despite all appearances, the halls of the Commonwealth Institute are more his home than anywhere else in this country. For once, Harper's right ear is not laden with that silvery Bluetooth headset that he so commonly wears. Every single person he could possibly need to contact now lies just within arm's reach.

Lifting his chin up, Harper stares up to the domed skylight overhead, squinting against the diffuse gray light shining down through the glass from the cloudy skies beyond the Institute's walls. The sound of footsteps clacking against the tiled floor on the balcony above him draws Harper's attention upward, brows furrowed and head tilted to the side as he assesses the source of the noise.

Just as dark as his own silhouette, the black-clad frame of Director Simon Broome looks stark against the white walls as he approaches the balcony's railing. His black suit, so immaculately kept, slims the old man's broad-shouldered frame. "Desmond…" is the rumbling greeting that Broome gives to his close confidant, running one weathered hand along the metal railing of the balcony, "I'm so glad that you could take the time out to come up here today… I thought it might be nice for us to have a face to face meeting, it's been too long."

Harper's brows pinch together when he sees Broome walking along the balcony, following him with a silent stare before commenting, "Such as it is…" and moving towards the staircase that connects the balcony to the lobby's ground floor. "I'm surprised to see you out of the lab, Director. Especially given everything that must be going on after what Howard's brought you."

Broome's brows furrow and his lips rise into a smile that creases the sides of his wrinkled mouth, dark eyes watching as Harper slowly ascends the stairs with each clanking metal step. "I get around," Broome comments wryly, tucking one hand into the pockets of his slacks as he follows the railing, letting his fingernails brush along the painted metal railing with a soft scraping sound.

"Howard has been most helpful in securing the information that we needed from Mister Goodman. I would like to think that everything is going according to schedule. But, Desmond, I've yet to hear the results I'm looking for from the Project Icarus research team… have I burdened you with too much responsibility?" Broom's lips downturn slowly into a frown as he comes to a stop, watching Harper make the last few steps to ascend to the balcony level. "I could just as easily put mister Eldridge in charge of things…"

Looking Broome up and down Harper's response is, at first, stoic silence. As he approaches Broome, his jacket is draped over the railing and one arm rests atop it. "You and I both know that Eldridge is too busy to do anything as intensive as I am right now, he has enough responsibilities."

"Then I expect you to be able to handle the responsibilities I give to you, Desmond. Doctor Sheridan's retro-virus is a good step in the right direction and it will be vital to us in the near future, but you have to understand that a fully functional version of the Formula is absolutely necessary for the future." Dark eyes narrow as Broome lifts his chin up, staring down the bridge of his nose at the agent in front of him.

"Our research here hinges on the ability to replicate what the Company managed to produce. Six decades of research, Desmond, sixty long years of research… over half a century of blood, swear and tears will not have gone to waste." It's a gentle tone that Broome uses to drive home this point, imploring the importance of his own cause onto his subordinate. "You are part of the key to our future, the key to the very survival of all of us…"

"I know," Harper defeatedly stares, eyes cast aside to where the dim gray light shines on the floor below. "I know, but there's only so much I can push those researchers to do. Zimmerman's research is useless to us without the Catalyst, and that died with Arthur Petrelli. We're starting back to scratch again and trying to avoid the same pitfalls that Pinehearst fell into… but even with everything we managed to recover, I don't think— "

"Desmond," Broome gently states, tipping his head down and regarding the young agent beneath furrowed brows. "I don't need an explanation as to why things aren't proceeding according to schedule, it isn't me you're going to be answering to when all is said and done, it's him." Both of Broome's dark brows rise slowly at that revelation, and Harper's eyes downcast to the floor.

"I know…" comes half-heartedly as Desmond swipes his tongue nervously across his lips, taking in a slow breath to try and calm jittery nerves. "I have an idea, something I wanted to suggest to you and Doctor Luis, but the plan will require cooperation from Doctor Carpenter, and you know how hard it's been to get him to perform regularly."

One of Broome's brows rises slowly, and the old man finally lifts his hand from the railing. Vrossing both of his arms over his chest he watches Desmond with an expectant stare. "We know from Goodman that there was a collective of travelers from the year 2019 that came back that successfully overthrew Arthur Petrelli's plan. Of them, we're aware that Eric Doyle and Edward Ray are dead and of no use to us. We have reason to believe that Niles Wight is likely dead as well, and the technopath they brought back with them isn't a worthwhile avenue to pursue given how hard of a time we've had dealing with just Rebel."

Plucking a piece of lint from his jacket, Harper looks from his hand up to Broome. "We're fairly certain that the April Bradley who was killed in 2009 was the one from our timeline, and that her double may still be out there somewhere. Furthermore, we have reason to believe that a man named Teodoro Laudani may have hitch-hiked back from 2019 as well in the form of some sort of psychic construct. If our intelligence reports from the deep scans of the original Edward's memories are correct, he's cohabitant within this timeline's Teodoro Laudani…"

Narrowing his eyes, Broome looks Harper up and down with thoughtful silence as his backdrop. Only one considering the height and width of the unspoken proposition, does Broome finally commit to speaking. "You think miss Silver and mister Laudani might have useful information for us, then? More so than we've been able to pull from Doctor Ray?"

"I do," Harper confirms with a nod, lifting his hand away from his jacket to tuck into the pocket of his slacks. "I'm willing to commit a team to recover Laudani and Silver and bring them back here for deep cognition scans. We could likely have them both after the Hammerdown operation has completed and we have access to the— "

"I have a better idea," Broome notes, taking a few slow steps closer to Harper, voice lowering some as he does. "Leave extracting Laudani to me, I think I have something that will work for that." Then, looking harper up and down again, Broome offers a good-natured smile and rests one hand on the agent's shoulder. "I think we can push our time table up, provided that we use all our available resources."

Harper's eyes flick down to the hand on his shoulder, then up to Broome with furrowed brows. "Such as?"

"Why don't we use our assets at the Company to corner miss Silver. Remember, in the future that April came from, the Company was ruthlessly hunted down by the government. It isn't so far from our own future, is it? I think if we turn those tables on her, and have the Company looking for our temporal fugitive, than we might just be able to kill two birds with one stone… don't you agree?" At Broome's assertion, Harper's brows slowly rise and his eyes widen.

"Doesn't agent Silver have a nice ring to it, Desmond?" Squeezing Harper's shoulder, Broome offers a warm and firm smile to the agent, then lets his hand fall away as he takes a step backwards, tucking wrinkled old hands into black slacks, shoulders stiffly squared in a body that is deceptively old.

"I think…" Harper begins, looking down to the floor, then back up to Director Broome, "I think that's a plan, sir." Broome's smile grows some as he hears Harper's response, his head quirking to the side and brows rising as his smile continues to grow.

"I am nothing, Desmond…" Broome notes with a hand lifting up to rest over his heart, "if not a planner." Broome's words elicits a nervous smile from Desmond as he pulls his jacket up from the railing, folding it over one arm and furrowing his brows, assessing the mastermind of the Institute much more closely now, jaw clenched and throat working up and down in a tight swallow.

"That you are, Sir…" is Harper's nervous response, it's hard not to be nervous around a man as powerful as Simon Broome.

"That you are."

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