cesar_icon.gif monica_icon.gif

Scene Title Debriefing
Synopsis Cesar and Monica trade information found at Fort Irwin.
Date July 24, 2018

New Jersey

Morning fog rolls in from the eastern coast creating a blanket visual of grey quiet, like cat’s feet. Less quiet but still at a casual stance of what used to be a back-nine set of holes, Cesar waits and watches for the woman he’d slipped a note to, to meet up in the isolated and abandoned golf course. His hands slid into the pockets of a camo BDU jacket - the one that still bears blood stains from the adventures of Fort Irwin - the undercover agent peers into the fog, dark gaze searching and ears straining to find his expected party.

Fernet-Me-Not grazes nearby as well, the horse kept on a long lead rein.

It didn’t take long for Monica to figure out horseback riding— because it doesn’t take Monica long to figure anything out. But still, she walks up to the meeting spot instead of riding. She’s wearing borrowed clothes, since she hadn’t planned out spending a week here. Or any time at all, really.

When she sees him, she picks her pace up some. She’s not quite running when she meets him, but her speed follows through as her hands touch his face and her lips move to meet his. This isn’t what this meeting is for, but she’s taking advantage of the privacy.

Cesar’s back is turned to her at first approach, but Fernet-Me-Not’s keener ears shift and the horse’s head lifts to the sounds of approach. That gets the man to turn, and in time to see Monica rushing forth from out of the fog. He catches her fully, arms spread then hooked around her midsection. The coolness of the weather does nothing to abate the passion of the kiss between them, the tightness of the embrace providing a moment of emotional relief.

Given a long (long) moment, after he’s had to extract himself just far enough to breathe, Cesar takes in her eyes, her face, her everything. “Goddamn,” he whispers, “how did you even wind up here?” How did either of them get here, really.

That relief echoes in Monica's sigh when he pulls back. She missed him and it shows in the curl off her fingers around his shoulders and in how little space she's actually affording him to catch his breath in. His question draws out a laugh and she has to take a moment to give that one some thought. How did she end up here? And how did it end up so spectacularly far from what her original plan was?

"I was following a lead on the bombing. I came to ask Eileen if she knew about it," she says, which might not explain it very deeply, but that's the jist. "Are you doing okay here?" She doesn't ask outright of he needs an extraction, but the implication is there. SESA is only a ferry ride away once she gets home. "I'm glad to see you," comes out on an exhale, a bit out of left field and a bit without her really meaning to say it. Because there is some sentimentality there that she doesn't usually express.

Honestly, Cesar's missed her too. Maybe more. The stark reminder hit him on the plane to Fort Irwin, when he'd first discovered she had stowed away in the flying deathtrap. Then, keenly aware that they were going to an actual, possible death trap, he had worried. Had Cesar any hair, it might have flecked grey. But, seeing as they're both safe for now, he manages to smile. The moment is in fact a joyful one for him, too. "I'm okay," he answers her quietly, "but I missed you like crazy too." If she couldn't tell from the way his face is mere inches from hers.

Of course, there's the matter of, "That doesn't explain how you were on the plane, chica." Did she think she could escape that bit of curious investigation?

"I hope you cleared your schedule for more than just paperwork stuff," Monica says with a crooked smile, "there are a few months we need to make up for." When he left, she definitely didn't think he'd be this long. His question, though, it brings her thoughts back around to the more serious parts of this meeting.


"I'd hear that the group down here was a little shady. I was snooping around." Obviously. "I didn't realize it was about to take off when I decided to get on board. But then someone was at every exit, so I thought… well, I'll see where we end up and improvize from there." Maybe she would not have gotten on if she knew they were going to fly right into a storm on autopilot. But, really, she probably would have. "And then I got to punch a robot, so really, it worked out pretty good."

Cesar chuckles at the sight of that crooked smile, one he'd not realized he needed to see for such a long span. "Oh, you're going to help me with that, are you," teases the man back, his hands, where they rest, giving her hips a squeeze. But yes, there are still reasons why they're there in the first place. And so, business first. Or rather, business now.

"You're in some pretty funny business, I will admit," he observes with a glance away from her briefly to the chestnut red horse clipping away at the overgrown grass. "And then, robot punching aside…" His dark-eyed gaze flicks back to her, her metallic arm, then her decidedly less metallic face. "We got ourselves in some real shit here. That pig. The chimp? The fuck."

At his tease, Monica leans back in toward him, stopping just short of kissing him again. "I had planned to," she says, lowly and full of promise. But, since business is now, she actually steps back from him to slide a tablet out of her bag. "Those hard drives had some interesting stuff on that. The animals. And some really weird stuff on what they were doing to people. I mean, I'm not one to judge a little transhumanism, but they really took that idea and ran with it." She turns it on and passes it over to him so he can look over what she was able to recover. "They were mimicking abilities using tech— pretty sure they already sold those. But that's the least of it, really."

Receiving the tablet, Cesar looks over the info contained, scrolling and frowning, and scrolling and frowning some more. "This Frankenstein shit is really," he starts to say, then pauses abruptly and looks up to Monica. "Sold to who?" His question follows with his turn and click of his tongue at Fernet-Me-Not, beckoning the animal over.

The horse doesn't exactly hop to, but grazes over eventually. Cesar isn't the strictest of riders, it would seem, though he only gives the horse a short pat on the neck as he reaches into the saddlebag to pull out a cellular phone, folders, and a notebook to pass it over to Monica. "The folders from the filing cabinets. They were project names. Subject names. I got down what I could, but now the question's how to get it out of here safe." He quirks a half-smile at her. "Por favor?"

"I don't know, but that brain explosive implant? It's got specs in all sorts of languages. You don't do that unless you're getting pitches ready. Private corporations? Governments? I can imagine some of them finding that particularly useful." Monica puts a hand on her hip, as if they might be around for her to scold over it. "But there's other stuff, too. A lot of heightened senses type stuff. Now your military can have night vision baked in, new this Fall."

When the horse makes his way over, Monica smirks and reaches over to pet his nose. But Cesar gets her attention again when he pulls out goodies. She takes them, flipping through the folders for a quick glance. He'll recognized the Arrowoods in her information; their names earn the files a second look. That last question gets a wry smile from her and she tilts her head and lets out an indulgent sigh. "I suppose," she says, sliding them into her bag for safe keeping. "Is there anyone in particular you want me to show these to? Or just anyone I can pin down?"

It becomes quite clear that Cesar is far more disturbed by what he's seen on the tablet the more he reads and by what Monica states. His level of 'that-is-fucked-up'ery grows. Then, "That ape bit me." He lowers the tablet, looking back at her with an almost-pout, definitely annoyed and a little worried. "Do you think anything's transferable?" Free hand going up to his shoulder, he rubs lightly at the spot where there's no doubt going to be a scar.

"As for who… if you've got a way to get these to Director Choi. Don't let the assistants stop you for some bullshit appointment," he notes with a slow shake of his head. The red tape, even these days, needed some trimming.

The look on Cesar's face reminds Monica that most people absolutely do get freaked out by these things. But then, his worried pout gets a bit of a laugh— just a chuckle, but she's definitely amused. "I think you're okay. What they did to it, I don't think that's easily spread. Now, living out here in the middle of Nowhere, New Jersey, I can't promise you won't pick something up."

She's still smiling a little when he picks out a contact. "God, right to the top, huh? Well. I don't fuck with assistants, but I'll see what I can do. My name can sometimes open doors. Sometimes it gets them slammed closed, too." She looks over at him again, her expression losing its humor. "Do I need to tell them to get you out?"

"Special Agent Nichols or Special Agent Quinn, too," Cesar adds in thought. "The agency's liaisons to the President, and Wolfhound." He huffs lightly, palm resting on the part of his shoulder where the bandages still cover a healing wound. "They wanted to keep this shit in the dark? Well now it's going to get dragged out there into the light. Not that the press needs to know about this, yet." No need for mass hysteria about clandestine science experimentation on humans and animals. Like the people had enough to worry about.

He finds himself staring at his horse when she asks that crucial question. Cesar turns a sidelong glance to her, his features bearing some guilt. "I don't know," is what the man answers after a long, silent, heavy beat. "There's work to be done still, yeah? They'll pull me if they need me." The words aren't as full of conviction so much as a dogged, stubborn determination. However, his shoulders fall slightly as he remarks, "But, having you here… and my mom's probably really pissed off I haven't sent her postcard or some shit."

“I might be able to see Lazzaro, too. Probably a good idea if they’re all aware that some terrible people aren’t as dead as they should be.” Monica reaches out for the tablet, to slide it into her bag with the files. “I hadn’t planned of telling the press. But Yamagato might be able to get started on a way to counter some of this. Head bombs, at the very least.”

Those are not sitting well with her, even if her tone is mostly casual.

“Well, we’ll see what they say, yeah? I’ll try not to make it sound too dire for you, even if I would like to see you back home again.” There’s a beat before she adds, teasingly, “Foggy misses you, you know how it is.” His last words get a smile out of her and she steps in closer to him again. “Do you feel suitably debriefed, or do we need to go over it again?”

“What the fuck is going on out there, and if it’s reached the military… this definitely goes to SESA, and maybe beyond. DHS definitely needs to know.” The reminder of the explosive implants strikes Cesar deeply, scrubbing a hand along his jaw and neck and looking into the fog one more time before turning his gaze back to her. It’s a lot to learn about, far beyond what humble hearts and minds would care to ponder in spare hours.

“And fuck, Foggy too. I bet he’s going to hate me for being gone,” Cesar laments quietly of missing his fine feathered friend. When she steps closer, he levels his eyes at hers. There’s a moment where he considers, a visible click of his thoughts over accompanying the slow blink of his eyes. Cesar smiles crookedly. “I think I am,” he says as he slips his hands around her waist again to bring them ever closer. “But, there’s still a few things I need to go over.” His fingers draw a trail down, eyes never leaving hers. “Thoroughly.”

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