Dead to Rights


russo2_icon.gif kristen_icon.gif kincaid_icon.gif devon2_icon.gif tahir_icon.gif

Scene Title Dead to Rights
Synopsis Running from the accident at Coyote Sands, the 'Advocate' crew are forced to split up in an effort to evade government forces.
Date March 19, 2011

Phillips 66 Gas Station, Gallup, New Mexico

There is an entire list of terrible things that can happen in Arizona. 'Altercation with armed men outside probable secret government facility' is definitely near the top of that list, and is unfortunately exactly the situation that the cast and crew of 'The Advocate' have found themselves in. They were able to get away unscathed, at least for the moment, but with gasoline-powered vehicles, there is only so far that can be driven before, well, more gasoline is needed.

This is the reason why they have found themselves parked outside of the Phillips 66 service station in Gallup, New Mexico. It's no pleasure stop, for certain. Just long enough to fill up the tanks in their new rides, which would hopefully do something to deter pursuit, and get some provisions: It's a long way back to New York City.

Ultimately, they might've just bought some extra time for themselves. That will certainly be the case until they start crossing more state lines, putting more distance between themselves and Coyote Sands, but even then, who can say? They could be looking at trouble in the next few minutes.

Stepping out of the gas station with several bags of snacks and his night bag slung precariously across his shoulder, Bradley Russo whistles sharply as he trails back to the SUV— which looks shockingly like the now deceased Stella (may she rest in peace)— in his latest change of clothes. If they're going to drive across state lines, he wants to be in a fresh set of clothes. He ditched the old ones. No reason to wear those again, even if they lack any physical evidence, he wouldn't wear them again anyways, much like the suit he'd worn on The Advocate that day when he'd accidentally cannon hands'd Dirk on the air. Knowing the power within ones' self is much more difficult than he could ever admit.

He whistles sharply as he trudges back to the vehicle. His head is held high again, as if he's found some inner strength from the distance they've put between them and Coyote Sands itself. "Good day for a drive," he considers as he stares up at the sky. There's little reason for him to press the issues further— or to talk about what happened. Some things shouldn't be discussed. Or maybe they should. But avoiders avoid. That's why they're called avoiders.

"Bugle?" he tosses the bag of salty snacks towards one of his comrades. Who doesn't like Bugles?

Supplies indeed, Devon's taken advantage of the stop and stocked up on necessities. Necessities in the form of water and sports drinks, and enough to share with everyone. There's even some un-peppered jerky in his haul for Trippy. Everything's already split equally, the intern thinking ahead and assuring for one bag per vehicle. And on returning to the two rentals, one bag is placed in the first, and the other goes into the second. That following, he moves to join Russo et al at the front of the vehicles.

Arms fold across his chest as the teenager leans against the hood of one car, casting a dismissive look toward the Bugles then passing them off to the next person. "We should be good for a while, got enough drinks to last us a few fill-ups." He's not bringing up the events either. His firearm is still safely tucked away on his person and it'll remain there unless necessary. "Think there's a Sonic nearby? A cherry-limeade slush would be great right now. And a burger." Gas station hotdogs just don't seem all that appetizing.

Only two of the three cars made it from the rental place to the gas station meeting point. Dirk and Trippy are still not here. The loss of her beloved executive assistant has the producer stepping close to the highway to look down the way they came, a deep frown on her face. "Dirk, where the hell are you with my god damned dog." Not that K cares about the beagriff, it's just a mutt.

Turning to look toward their more modest vehicle, a blue economy car, she lifts her chin to the driver. "Tahir, let's talk to the guys and then load up on stuff for the road, we're not stopping." Bathroom yes. She pivots on one foot and marches toward Stella II and the bag of bugles in Russo's hand. Though she dips her hand into the bag uninvited, she doesn't actually take any, changing her mind at the very last second. Devon receives a withering look from the middle aged woman and a slight shake of the head. "Forget food for now, we need a plan. And we need to find Dirk."

With his phone both formatted and then smashed on the hard road, Kincaid's first priority even before clothes and coffee, was to buy a new one, one of the cheap throw away ones, not as good as his last one, but with enough minutes for an emergency call or two. Heading back to the SUV, he shoves the phone into his pocket, not programming any numbers in. He'll have to dial from memory.

He still did get the coffee, in a thermos held in the other hand. Carrying more than two cups. And don't mind the truck driver caffiene drinks shoved in his pockets, either. No food, but his appetite is small, based on the shake of his head and the mild passing on of the Bugles rather than eating any. That he follows with, jaw set with worry as he glances around, looking for the cameras he knows are present.

After a moment, his eyes find their way back to Kristen, and he adds softly, "I'd love to hear whatever plans you got, boss."

"Fuck that."

The words are coming from Tahir's mouth with all the extra strength and awesomeness of someone who just doesn't seem like he wants to be dealing with stuff like: "Dirk's on his own." Tahir's eyes are narrowed as he glances around the gas station and the surrounding area to see if he can zero in on some specific landmarks or anything that would be of some use. "You guys do know that, in situations like this, there's only one thing to do, right?"

For once, Tahir reaches up to put his sunglasses on. He's always got a pair stashed somewhere. Even while he's standing around with the group and tossing in his opinion whether or not it is wanted.

"Vegas, baby."

With some frequency, vehicles do come and go, but so far, not a single one of them has been Dirk. Or Trippy, in the event she ditched him and drove herself, unlikely though that may be. The more immediate concern is how long the group is willing to stay and wait for the missing car to arrive. Even if they aren't being followed, if they stay too long, they're going to attract someone's attention.

But Coyote Sands was over eight hours ago. If they haven't been caught by now, things are looking pretty good.

"Dirk could be ahead of us," Russo observes quietly as he grasps one of the bugles and crunches it quietly. His lips twist to the side as he eyes his comrades and nods slightly before passing the bag on to Devon. "Maybe. It's not impossible is it? I mean, I know one of us should've seen him, but it's not impossible— he wouldn't have to stop for awhile, now would he?"

He shrugs slightly. "We need to keep moving. The more ground we put between us and— " circumstances that won't be named "— the better." His tongue dabs at his lips while his eyebrows knit together behind the pair of sunglasses that shade his eyes.

Taking the Bugle bag, Devon this go around helps himself to a few of the little crunchy snacks. If there's no stopping for food, might as well eat what's here. The bag is then held out for someone else to take while he pops a Bugle into his mouth and munches quietly. Giving some thought to Dirk's whereabouts, he nods toward Tahir. "He could've gone there. Or crossed into Mexico. Or headed for Canada."

Jokes aside, the teenager gives a shrug and looks toward the road. "If we can drive with stops only for gas and food, and to switch drivers. If we head back for the Interstate, we can be back in New York in a few days."

"He was behind us, he wouldn't cross the border without letting me know ahead of time." Kristen's sullen answer is delivered with a side of map as she unfolds the one from her back pocket and holds it up under the light. "I think we should split up, keep in contact with disposable phones if we have to… but we shouldn't stay together. We can take different routes back to New York one north, the other south." Looking between the men and the boy, Kristen passes the map to Kincaid for his answer.

"With that in mind, we should start using cash instead of our credit cards so before we leave we need to pull out as much as we can from the ATM and split it." Turning her head to cast another long look at the highway, the brunette folds her arms over her chest and hugs herself to keep warm in the chilly night air.

There's a small look of relief that comes across Kincaid's face at the bosses plan, rubbing a hand through his hair with a nod. "Splitting up is a good idea, and I already have a lot of cash on me." Everything he's bought so far since that fateful encounter has been in cash. But he has a little more experience with this situation…

Course most of his experience was still quite different.

"I'd prefer to stick with rocket hands," he adds with a nod toward Russo.

Tahir is too smooth with his movements, because he's walking behind Kristen and there is suddenly the arrival of his suit jacket to her shoulders. That should assist with the chilly night air some. But he doesn't even mention it or look in her direction. Instead, he is holding up his hands as he continues walking around in whatever little chatting circle they have made.

"I'm tellin' you right now. You wanna' get some cash? Take me to Vegas." Tahir is literally just figuring that such a place would be epically awesome to hide out in for a while. "What's the big rush in getting back to New York anyway? It ain't like it ain't gonna' be there. Since we're already running for our lives, we might as well have the time of our lives." Tahir flashes a smile. See? Forever the Bright Side.

Pulling the jacket over her arms and then flipping her hair out over the collar, Kristen adjusts it as she listens to Kincaid. "Alright then, we split up. Tahir and I will take the north, you three take the south?" She holds her hand up in front of Russo's face before he even has a chance to argue and shakes her head. "No arguments. Production staff has the vote on this one since we make things happen." Not that the others don't but… whatever.

"Okay Tahir, pull out as much cash as you can from the ATM. Devon, you are in charge of the receipts for your car. Think you can handle that champ?" Treating the intern like a child is really the only way she knows how to deal with him. Regardless, Kristen gives him a little smile and then turns to Kincaid. "Make sure you keep receipts for everything, just because this little stunt might end our careers doesn't mean we shouldn't be able to write it off on taxes."

"Gee, I don't know Ms. Reynolds," Devon replies with a roll of his eyes. "Don't worry about it, everything'll be documented and accounted for." A brow lifts slightly as though expecting argument, however he doesn't wait for one. Already he's handing the Bugles off to Russo and making for the station's ATM, an almost frown forming. He doesn't usually let the child-treatment get to him, especially when it comes to work, but sometimes it chafes.

Visiting the ATM, Devon takes money out from his account. While he's sure the others all have company cards, or something of that nature, he's doesn't have that privilege but figures any little bit can help. Once his account has been sufficiently tapped, he's back in the store to acquire a couple of disposable phones. After, the teenager returns to the car, passing one of the two phones to Kristen.

There's a nod from Kincaid, but he moves forward as Devon goes to do his shopping and reaches to grasp Kristen's upper arm briefly. It's not a strong grasp, but it's solid enough that she knows it's there. "K, be careful. You're too reckless— but I think you and Tahir will make a good team."

Or at least better than some.

"And I'll take care of Russo and the kid," he adds, as he lets his hand drop, glancing toward those in his charge. He may only be an Assistant Producer, but he seems to have invested in this job, or the people in it.

Tahir is already on his way to the ATM. "I want full reimbursement, okay? This is like… my secret stash. Only to be used in emergencies." Tahir is muttering mostly to himself as he just starts taking money out and shoving it into his pocket and things of that nature. He does that quite a few times, by the way. But whatever. Finally, though, he's sliding back over to the group and shrugging his shoulders with some impatience. "Y'know, this could actually -make- my career. I mean… I don't think Ryan Seacrest ever went to jail." Oh Tahir. Priorities.

Tahir looks around as everything seems to be coming to an epic close. Plans have been made. Duties have been assigned. Tahir looks at Kincaid and even takes his sunglasses off at this point. His eyes are beyond serious. They are epic. "Fear Not, Brethren. For she will have My Staff." And that's when Tahir makes a dash for the vehicle.


Tahir's statement may well be more true than he realizes, with one notable difference: Mordor might be coming to them.

Devon's the first to see them in the glow of the streets lights that trace a path south, back to Interstate 40, but even if he elects not to comment, they will become the sole focus of everyone's attention before long: A short column of three Humvees is rolling north, approaching the station fast. And unlike the one they had encounter out in the desert, these ones are more heavily armed, large machine guns mounted to their roofs. The time for Krisdo and Samhir to leave on their own has come perhaps sooner than expected.

Things suddenly might not be looking so great for Dirk and Trippy, either.

The lights wouldn't normally draw any notice, but since things have been relatively quiet until now, Devon does notice the fast approach of large vehicles. That's not a good thing, and it seems to get worse as it materializes with armor and armaments. "Holy fuck." It's said quietly, but with an urgency. Absently the teenager reaches behind himself to touch the handgun hidden beneath his shirt. "Get in the cars now and let's go." He looks first at Kristen and then Kincaid as he gives the order, but doesn't tarry before he's pushing Russo toward the front seat and readying himself to climb in the back.

The swearing gets K's attention before the touch on the arm and she's just about to threaten his mouth with a bar of soap or make him stand in a corner or whatever you do with children until she sees what he's looking at. "Holy titty fucking mother of Christ…" she mutters in reply, grabbing Tahir by the sleeve, she practically drags him along with her as she begins running to their vehicle. "Go go go go go!!"

Thank god the key was left in the ignition while they were having their little pow-wow because as soon as Tahir is seated (not buckled or door closed behind him), Kristen has the car started and she's gunning the gas. "We're taking the backroads out of town and we'll hit the interstate a few exits up…. if they don't have them barricaded. Keep a sharp eye out, will you?"

No one has to tell Kincaid twice. With the first sign of the Humvees, he runs around the SUV and jumps into the driver's seat, dropping the coffee thermos onto the between area as he starts up the engine. He's very grateful for the tight lid, or else they'd have hot coffee in their respective laps.

The only delay in taking off is waiting to make sure that Russo and Devon are both in the SUV most of the way, though the passenger door may not be all the way closed before he pulls out.

This is going to be a long night—

Or a very short one.


Tahir Avery Dunham is scared as hell… at least for the moment, though he is lucky Kristen is there to get his ass into the car. He's mostly freaking out because he has no way to defend himself against these heavily armed freak dudes that want to take them out. He fakes taking a pump off an inhaler that doesn't exist, because that's just how completely out of it Tahir is, before he starts watching the window. "I swear to God, Kristen. If we make it to Vegas, we are so gettin' it on. Like… nonstop. I refuse to die without that happening." There's a pause. A blink. Then another pause.

"… That … wasn't supposed to be out loud." One last pause. "OH SHIT! THERE THEY IS! DRIVE, WOMAN! DRIVE!"

For as hastily thought out as it was, the plan appears to work. When Kincaid takes the SUV south past the column, it's several seconds before the rear vehicle peels off and performs a U-turn before giving pursuit. The other two gun their engines and haul after Kristen and Tahir, proving themselves to be surprisingly fast for being as heavy as they are. But the sedan is faster still, and with the engine needing to pull much less weight, no doubt has faster response and handling. And with the Humvee's occupants apparently unwilling to use those large mounted guns along this stretch of road, that's another advantage. Or it will be, until there road runs out of things they don't want to accidentally hit.

For their efforts, Kincaid, Devon and Russo make it to the on-ramp, whirl around it onto the interstate, and are confronted with clear and open lanes, with few other vehicles to impede their travels.

'Few other vehicles,' however, is perhaps much, much less helpful to them when the SUV, and the ground immediately surrounding it, are illuminated by a light from high above them.

"Shit," Devon spits out as light illumines around the SUV. He climbs over the back seat and into the cargo area of the SUV, pressing a cheek against the window to look upward. "We gotta get lost, Kincaid." Devon's warning is likely unneeded, but he voices it anyway. He pulls himself back into the back seat, perching on the edge to lean between the two front seats. An extra set of eyes watching the road and looking for possible hide aways.

"Dunham! Focus!! Find me the roads I need on the map!" Hopefully he has the map because she didn't actually grab it when they had to run. Yanking the steering wheel a hard left, she veers down another county road and presses the gas pedal to the floor. "Next time we go on a field trip, remind me to rent a helicopter." Would'a should'a could'a… didn't.

Having a hard time focusing without her glasses, Kristen squints to see the road ahead of them. Ba-bump is the sound the car makes as she hits their first bit of roadkill. "Y'know Dunham," the producer muses in a conversational tone, "if we were back home in the Smokies we'da just got dinner." She doesn't bother trying to hide her southern accent anymore, the one she quite firmly believes makes her sound at least 20 IQ points dumber.

"Son of a…" Kincaid says, glancing up through the windshield towards the light and grimacing. There's only so much that he can do to lose the helicopter in this terrain, and none of them are really good.

There's a mild glance in Russo's direction, checking his hands specifically, before he looks up in the mirror toward Devon. Also known as the minor with an illegal firearm. "Take your gun off and put it on the seat, so if we don't get away I can say it's mine." One less charge for the kid—

With that small instruction, he tries his best to squint through the darkness for somewhere to go—

Though he doesn't expect to find it.

For the moment, Kristen and Tahir are easily able to outrun their pursuers: Their single greatest challenge is distance. The next Interstate Highway, heading north as they are, is I-70 in Colorado, 390 miles away. Nothing less than a marathon.

The helicopter spotlighting the SUV doesn't remain high for long, swooping down towards the highway for the sole purpose of making itself a far more serious threat. Even with the prevailing darkness, there is just enough scatter from the spotlight that, when the copter dips low enough and starts to pull itself alongside them, it is possible to see weaponry mounted on its stubby wings. "Stop your vehicle immediately," echoes out over a loudspeaker, "Or we will open fire." The threat is, in all likelihood, very real. And worse, unless they want to find out if their SUV is capable of flight itself, they are left with no place to run to other than straight ahead. There's no getting out of this one.

Kincaid, Devon, and Russo all: They've got them dead to rights.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License