Conspiracies, Murder And Gardening


cardinal_icon.gif jessica_icon.gif zuleyka_icon.gif

Scene Title Conspiracies, Murder And Gardening
Synopsis Amongst the chore of gardening, the trio discuss what they'd love to do with Danko and Linderman.
Date September 5, 2009

New York Public Library

As the sun goes down over the city of New York, the not-quite-abandoned halls of the former main branch of the public library are disturbed by a strange sound - a steady clattering and banging that makes its way down the hallway off of which several offices that have been claimed as 'bedrooms' branch.

Richard Cardinal's hands rest on the metal bar of a hand-cart's grip, pushing along a large plastic barrel towards some locale within the building, his step brisk and easy and lips curved in the faintest of smiles upon his expression. The hollow rattling and clacking comes from an amount of PVC piping protruding from the barrel and over his shoulder, bouncing around between the side of the barrel and the plastic 2-litre bottles that are jammed to near-overflowing in that same rounded storage unit.

There's the skitter of nails on hard flooring, as Edmund comes bounding down the hallway, miniscule superball in his mouth. He notes Cardinal's presence, and throws back his head to try and bay like a miniature Hound of the Baskervilles. It lacks a certain je ne sais quoi, considering he still has his mouth full of rubber ball. Zu comes around the hall corner, somewhat more cautiously. "What're you doin' there?" she wonders. She's in t-shirt and jeans, messenger bag slung over her shoulder.

Jessica has been known to keep to herself and mind her own business, unless she's needed. But of course, as she's trying to get a little shut eye before she goes out for the evening, she is seemingly woken by the sounds of something banging. Just a little annoyed, she gets to her feet and walks down the long hall until she gets to the others. "What's going on in here?" Shit. She's not been the most stylish she's ever been as of late, though all her nice dresses have been deserted for comfort. Black t-shirt, jeans and sandals that scrape along the ground as she walks. Her hair is pulled back tight into a ponytail.

"Huh? Oh, sorry…" The hand cart's wheels squeak softly as they roll to a halt, and Cardinal twists slightly at the waist to look back a bit sheepishly to the pair, one hand freeing itself from the metal bar to rub self-consciously at the nape of his neck, "Keep forgetting you people sleep during the night." Not everyone's as nocturnal as the shadowman, and he occasionally lets that slip his mind.

A tilt of his head to the barrel, "I'm just bringing in some supplies to start up a hydroponics project. Figured we could do with some fresh vegetables and shit."
Zu claps her hands in delight. "I love it," she says, happily, as Ed comes frisking up to Cardinal, drops the ball at his feet and looks up in hope. "Up on the roof. That's great. And not me…..I don't tend to sleep until weird hours. Not like I work nine to five," she points out, merrily.

There has been some discussion of growing food here. It makes sense, considering most of them don't have real jobs, including Niki who has given up her bartending gig at Lucy's in order to let Jessica devote more time to pursuing Linderman. The fact is, Jessica is getting antsy. She's not used to waiting. She's a woman of action and she'd rather just storm in the and tear someone limb from limb. However, she agreed to try out the team, but she's been a bit more than irritable as of late. "Well, just give a little warning next time. It's not like we're doing anything else around here." Just a tad bitchy this evening.

"Yeah, I'll probably move it up to the roof once I get the rigs built… and sorry, Jessica," Cardinal says with a tight shake of his head, giving her a ruefully sympathetic look, "Hopefully after the meeting Monday we'll have more in the way of— business to take care of. Plenty of shit to put into motion." A smile twitches back to his lips, chin lifting to Zu, "Wanna give me a hand? I need to cut all these fucking 2-litres in half."

'Sure," Zu says, amiably, already producing a pocket knife from a pants pocket. "i'm up all night. Had too much caffeine to drink." She shoots Jessica an apologetic look.

Jessica doesn't look like she's in much of a mood for an apology. She's rarely apologetic herself, thinking them to be rather useless phrasings. "I'm thinking of tracking down that chick from the other week. Miss Force Field or whatever her name was. If I can get close enough, I can make that bitch squeal like a little girl." Knuckles crack as she leans up against a discarded desk. "I wouldn't mind snapping the neck of that one." she admits.

"She's one of Linderman's personal assistants or something like that," notes Cardinal, even as he pushes the barrel fully into the room he was heading for; pulling out the twine-bound bundles of PVC piping, he tosses them over to lay on the floor to one side of the room with a clattering, "You could probably smash her face in, but she might be a better source've information if we have her checked into, maybe followed… I think Brian's angling in on the Linderman thing, we'll discuss it Monday evening."

"Who is this?" Zu wonders, as Ed patters after her….and then goes sidling up to Jessica, in hopes of attention. And then she asks Cardinal, "Half lengthwise, or crosswise?" She's fairly sure it's the latter, but hey.

"I think I just need someone to pound on for a day or so, and I'll feel a bit calmer. I hate all this waiting bullshit." Jessica admits. "I feel like I should be doing something, and I'm doing nothing." Granted, part of being tactical means waiting, it's just never been all that good for her. She tends to like to rush right into things. To Zu, "Some new assistant to Linderman. My replacement, apparently." As if.

"Crosswise. Basically I need to turn them into cup-funnel things with an open end— don't lose the caps, either, I need those too." The barrel full of soda bottles, most of which still have wrappers, is given over to the care of his teenaged side-kick or whatever she is as Cardinal turns fully towards Jessica. "Trust me, I know the feeling," he admits, nose wrinkling in a grimace, "I'm normally a wait-and-plan guy myself, but right now every fucking second I'm not hunting those Humanis bastards down feels like I'm wasting it…"

Zuleyka suggests, pragmatically, "We should set up a bag for you to beat on. Find an old heavy bag somewhere, rig it up. I could use the exercise for the upper body, you all could work off stress," Ed noses curiously at one of the bottle halves that Zu drops, after neatly slitting the bottle open with her pocket knife.

"Any word on the FBI guy they have now?" Jessica has been hearing rumblings about Felix and has been curious if he's been seen yet. She asides to Zu with a smirk. "Bags don't fight back, or make nice squishy sounds when you pound on them."

A wry snort of breath from Cardinal, and he suggests darkly, "Find me Emile Danko, we'll toss him in the bag and you can punch to your heart's content." He drops down to sit on the floor, legs crossing as he pulls a switchblade from a pocket and snaps it open to start sawing another two-litre in half. "No word on Ivanov, unfortunately, he was a damn useful resource… hopefully we can find him before they— well."

"Who's this?" Zu says, settling herself comfortably on the floor, unzipping more of the bottles, as Ed noses hopefully at Jessica's ankl.e

Jessica refrains, as tempting as it is, to nudge Ed away from her. She mostly just ignores him for now. "Cardinal knows him, I guess." to Zu. "Maybe we can line Danko up next to Linderman and let everyone take a shot.. you know, until eternity or something." She pulls the phone out of her pocket. Niki hasn't heard from Micah in a while now, that little bit of worry is bleeding over into Jessica.

The squeak of metal on plastic comes from Cardinal's work as he separates the two halves of the bottle, setting one end to the side and reaching for the next. "Felix Ivanov," he explains in a tired sort of voice, "He's an FBI agent that I'm familiar with, we use each other as contacts sometimes. Humanis picked him up during that fuck-up at the gala, though."
Zuleyka's little face is grim, at that. "What makes us think he's not just dead?" she says, even as she struggles with a recalcitrant Pepsi bottle.

"He's not," Cardinal gives his head a tight shake, "Our clairvoyant told us that much, but even if she's wrong…" The knife's edge plunges into the plastic with a squeal of protest from the bottle, "…Ivanov won medals and shit, was in the news a lot a way's back. Humanis is all about the message. If he was dead, they'd have used him to put out a message."

She accepts that, peaceably enough, though the clouded look she has doesn't clear. She just nods, matter of fact, and tosses aside another dismembered bottle.

"Probably true enough. Of course, if they kill a cop, then folks start upping the ante too." Jessica notes. "It's one thing to nap a celebrity, but when you nap someone in law enforcement, they start to take it personally." It makes sense. Perhaps they have killed him, but are playing things close to the chest in order to avoid raising the ire of other law enforcement.

"They already blew up a fuckin' gala thrown by FRONTLINE, I don't think they're really concerned about the ante," Cardinal admits with a tight shake of his head, "Although I have some ideas about forcing their hand, myself… if they won't up the ante, I'll shove all their damn chips in." Chop goes the knife's edge, nearly cutting into his leg before he stops it. Leaning over, he picks up the fallen bit of soda bottle, his head shaking, "Anyway."

Zuleyka chuckles to herself, and it's a very unpleasant sound. She looks like the third Norn as she works with her knife, only it's the measure of a plastic bottle's life she's taking and ending, rather than some unfortunate mortal's.

Well, sometimes you just can't find a body to butcher when you want one. Perhaps someone can make little squealy sounds when Zu stabs the bottle. It might make her feel better. Honestly, as angry as she was when she heard about what they did to Elizabeth, Jessica's goal is Linderman above all else. It's a personal stake. "Whatever you gotta do. We all have our part to play, and mine will be when we get close enough to Linderman that my hands can go around his throat."

"I'm sure you'll have your hands 'round his skinny throat in no time," Cardinal says with a slow shake of his head, tugging the last bit of a reluctant-to-part bottle off and tossing the waste end over one shounder to bounce across the room, "He's one with a reserved seat in hell, after all've the shit he's done."

"He sounds like a hell of a bastard," Zu says, setting aside her plastic bottle in favor of unclipping an aluminum water bottle from her messenger bag, and taking a swig.

"And I hope I'm right there pounding the shit out of him for eternity. It still wouldn't come close to what he deserves for punishment." Jessica says, perhaps feeling the hatred coming from Niki towards Linderman. "Though.." something crosses her mind as she tilts her head, then slowly swings her gaze over towards Cardinal. "What if someone put Linderman's name out there for Mr. Danko. Evolved is evolved." The words come out slowly as if she's still thinking about it, dwelling over each and every word before they leave her lips.

"I don't think that he'd go after him," Cardinal admits, leaning back a bit to rest on one hand as he looks up at Jessica, one brow lifting, "He's not that bright, and— inevitably, Linderman'll come out as what he is. When he does, it'll be a huge P.R. coup for the Humanis folks."

"Too bad we can't arrange a way for them to fight each other," Zu says, mournfully. "'Enemy of my enemy, and all that."

There's a shrug from Jessica. "It's a thought. Of course, I don't want to have any reason for the man to get any sympathy. I plan on giving him zero sympathy." She pushes herself away from the desk. "I'm going out." She doesn't say where to, or for how long, or what she's up to. The tone of her voice does tend to drift towards 'if you don't hear from me by morning', which lends itself to the fact that she might not be up to any good.

"It's a thought, yes." Cardinal watches from behind his shades as the blonde pushes herself up, considering her for a few moments before he nods, once. To an extent, he understands, although of course there's only so much he can understand. He's never lost a child. Or had one, but that's beside the point. "Alright. Give a call if you need any backup or intel, Jessica. Watch yourself out there." Then he turns back, reaching over for a bottle, "Talked to Rocket lately?"

"Sleep well, if you do," Zu wishes, quietly, though it's still her water bottle she fools with, rather than the ones meant for irrigation. "Not lately," she says to Cardinal. "I've been looking into getting my GED. There's a mosque that offers a free prep course. They seem cool. Not all stupid and reactionaryand shit."

Jessica nods to both and slips out of the room, missing the last part of the exchange between Cardinal and Zu. She walks over to where she's camped and picks up her backpack and slips out of the library.

"Your GED, eh? Not a bad idea…" The bottle's turned over onto Cardinal's lap, and he drives the tip of the knife into its plastic side, starting to saw around slowly as he shifts the subject gradually to less business-like subjects, trying to take the advice he'd been given to try and relax before he had a heart attack, "…thinkin' about college and shit after that?"

Zuleyka nods to that, and folds away her knife, then picks up Ed and deposits him in herlap for cuddling. "Yes. I like this Peter Pan life, but eventually, I'll grow up. Better to arrange my options now."

Cardinal gives his head a slight shake, "Smart girl. Smarter'n I was. Any idea what you want to do, assuming the world doesn't end up a big fuckin' nuclear waste dump in the next couple've years?"
"Maybe be a doctor like my dad. If I have the guts to kill, I should be able to heal," she says, pratically, taking a well-chewed plastic bone out of the bag, and offering it to a whining Edmund.

"Hm." The edge of the knife saws a bit against a particularly stubborn bit, Cardinal's eyes lifting over the edge of his shades towards the teenager, "He was a doctor, mm? Hell, if you think you can do it, more power to you, kiddo."

Zuleyka nods. "He was. He worked at a hospital that got destroyed during the bomb. My mom was visiting him, so I was an orphan in an instant," Her tone is lacking in pity, or muchof anything, really. Matter of fact, again.

Cardinal nods just a bit; not offering support or sympathy or anything, just acknowledging the occurance. If she's not going to show a reaction, he's not going to push it. It's not like he's a parental figure or anything, god forbid. "Doctor's not a bad job," he muses, "Pays well, I hear."

"And worth doing. Not like making your first million making up random widgets," she says, scratching the little hound creature behind his somewhat floppy ears.

"Well, after you've got your GED, lemme know, I'll see if I can dredge up a scholarship from somebody," Cardinal offers as he tosses the half-bottle he's working on into the pile and reaches out a hand, "Here, hand me one've those lengths of pipe, I'll show you how to build a hydro rig. It's not that hard, honestly."

She leans over, making Ed whimper in annoyance, and hands off the bit of pipe. "That….that'd be good. Not to burn that bridge before I get to it, of course."

"Everything's possible, kiddo…" The pipe's taken in hand, and the shadowmorph reaches for a joint, "…let's just try and make sure there's a future for it to be possible in, eh? Alright, so first we use this to build the frame, we'll need it sealed nice and tight so the water doesn't leak…"

And so the evening goes. Sometimes there's conspiracies and murder. Other times, there's just gardening.

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