Everybody Run...


cat_icon.gif jonas_icon.gif scott_icon.gif

Scene Title Everybody Run…
Synopsis … the alleged sociopath's got a gun. She's also checking out a theory.
Date July 8, 2010

The Garden

Situated in a copse several miles away from the nearest stretch of asphalt, the Garden is accessible via an old dirt road that winds snakelike through the woods and dead-ends at the property's perimeter, which is surrounded by stone wall plastered with wicked coils of rusty barbed wire to keep would-be intruders from attempting to scale it. Those with a key can gain entry via the front gate.

The safehouse itself is a three-story brickwork cottage over a century old and covered in moss and ivy. It slants to one side, suggesting that the foundation has been steadily sinking into the wet earth; incidentally, this may be one of the reasons why its prior occupants never returned to the island to reclaim their property when government officials lifted evacuation orders and re-opened the Verrazano-Narrows shortly before its eventual destruction.

Inside, the cottage is decorated in mismatched antique furniture including a couch in the living room and an armchair nestled in the corner closest to the fireplace that go well with the safehouse's hardwood floors and the wood-burning stoves in some of the spare bedrooms. A heavy wooden table designed to seat eight separates the dining area from the rest of the kitchen, which is defined by its aged oak cabinetry and the dried wildflowers hanging above them.

A steamy haze hangs in the air, catching rays of morning sunlight filtering through tall pine trees in the midlands of Staten Island. Out here near the Greenbelt it almost looks like it isn't New York City. Drive just far enough north from the reclaimed zone, and everything is more forested, even the highways have some green in them. Cracked and broken pavement torn apart by the forst of the winter and almost four nears of neglect sprout with tall grass and dandelions. Telephone poles are skewed at odd angles, long dead power lines hanging limply between each crooked post.

Along a particularly desolate stretch of highway consumed by nature, a shady dirt road rambles off into the woods, currently more a mud trail than anything from the heavy rains that ended less than an hour ago. Through puddles and dips in the dirt, there's a secret tucked away in the greenery of Staten Island's middle, a little wooden cottage nestled in a copse of trees, its overgrown field out back something that sparkles with fireflies at night. During the morning hours, though, it is home to a feast of dragonflies that buzz and flit through the yellow-gold grass.

Two beat-up old pickup trucks are parked on the lawn out front of the cottage, only one of them actually runs anymore, the other's been up on blocks since last fall when it finally gave up the ghost, now it's job is just to be stripped of parts. The sound of footsteps coming down that dirt road cme with the squealch of shoes in the mud and the crunch of sandier soil in higher and dryer spots.

Catherine Chesterfield's foot-traffic approach to the Ferrymen safehouse called the Garden is only noticed by two people. One of them is familiar, tall and weathered; Scott Harkness is a mainstay among the organization, usually one that never wanders far from Greenwich village. Today, however, he's taken up a more practical affair.

The sound of a gunshot isn't unexpected when Cat hears it, for she can see the pasty-white and wiry young man holding a .22 rifle at the ready, standing with an old post and beam wooden fence as a dividing line, shooting at cans on another fence some sixty feet away across the back field.

Jonas Regan has never fired a gun before, and it looks like Scott Harkness is fixing that particular skill deficit. Jonas looks much as he had been described to Cat; wiry and thin, a shock of red hair and little black sunglasses with round lenses.

Another gunshot cracks off and this time a beercan plinks off of the opposite fence, and Harkness slaps a hand down on Jonas' shoulder approvingly. Today is an ordinary day, out here on Staten Island.

There are weapons in play as she approaches, a thing both seen and heard easily, so Cat's arrival is adjusted accordingly. Hands are kept in full view, making it clear she doesn't have weaponry in them. It wouldn't do at all to have something be misinterpreted before they can see and know who she is. She moves to within twenty feet of the firing line and stops, waiting there to be acknowledged before coming forward.

The younger man's technique and form is observed, impressions of it kept to herself. She mostly wishes she'd brought out her M16 for the occasion. Maybe there's one here.

It takes a couple of minutes for Harkness and Jonas to notice someone on the edge of the field just off the dirt road. Harkness catches sight of Cat in his peiphery first, tapping Jonas on the back and motioning with a jerk of his head to her. Handing off the rifle to Scott, Jonas offers a friendly wave and starts trudging his way up through the tall grass and the embankment towards the dirt road Cat waits on the edge of, while Scott seems content to wait where he is, and see if she's here for him or not.

"Hey there!" Jonas calls up as he reaches the top of the hill, brushing a mosquito off of his shoulder. "Probably don't wanna come down into the grass, ticks are everywhere this season. You're…" fiery red brows furrow behind the smoky sunglasses, "Chesterfield, right? The new administrative appointment?" One red brow kicks up, and a hand is offered out to the brunette.

"Name's Jonas Regan, I think I've seen you 'round here before but— I see a lot've people. There anything I can do for you or were you here for Scott?"

"Cat'll do," she tells the man when walking forward causes them to intersect about halfway between where he came from and the spot she stood on. "And that's me, the admin type, among other things." Her right hand extends to take his and shake it once before releasing. Warm, soft and smooth skin which tells of a life not spent doing much in the way of rough work, though there are hints of that being different in some small way lately. Then there are the calluses to her fingertips. Guitar?

"I'm mostly just bouncing around today, hadn't been out here in a while, so I wandered over." The man is flashed a grin, as she remarks "Don't let me interrupt target practice. In fact, is there an M16 around?"

So convenient, that a way to camouflage her true intention so readily presented itself. Maybe she can pull off inquiring into his visual prowess without even having to mention the theory.

Laughing awkwardly, Jonas runs a hand through his hair. "I don't— well— probably, but they're probably locked in the basement. We don't have a lot of heavy stuff out here, not since the Armory got hit. We've had to move a bunch of things around and spread out stuff out further. Scott brough the twenty-two for me. If you wanna' target practice you're more than welcome to borrow it."

Looking back to Scott, Jonas adjusts his sunglasses, then turns his attention back to Cat. "Otherwise I'd have to ask around and see who's actually in charge here today to allow the basement to be opened up. God knows it changes every day of the week, we haven't had a stable operator out here since Jezebel, I hear. Just a lot of comers and goers."

"It's all good," Cat decides in terms of the basement being opened as she walks along toward Scott and the firing line. "I might try out the twenty-two, it's not so much different from five dot five-six millimeters." A few steps later she turns to look over her shoulder and see if he's moving along, remarking "I've noticed. It's sad." The once-lush garden of the garden is recalled, compared with the condition of things now after the one-two punch of Institute freeze and baking heat. Not that the two was needed, part one probably did the trick all on its own.

Once she's close enough, the veteran is greeted in a single word. "Scott."

"Catherine," the old soldier notes where he's leaning up against the fence, squinting against the sunlight behind her, brows pinched together. "Figured somebody would let slip where I'm takin' my vacation time," seems like a joke, but with Scott's coarse and monotone voice it's hard to tell what's a joke and what's serious. "Just giving Jonas a couple of pointers on proper shooting, it's been a long, hot week and I'm sick of sitting in that air-conditioned building… I figure…" Scott's brows furrow and his eyes narrow. "Ah, what's it matter. Outside's outside… right?"

As Scott laughs off his commentary in gruff manner, Jonas follows Cat down the embankment and to the field, droplets of dew sprkling away from the yellow-gold grass in her wake. "Make sure you check yourself for ticks after you've been out here, Cat. Don't want one of them layin' eggs in your apartment or nothin'. That'd be pretty bad."

"Fortunately it's a little cooler," Cat offers in response to escaping the insides of buildings. Eyes settle on the weapon Scott holds as she asks "Mind if I fire a few rounds?" Once Jonas joins them, she eyes her legs and boots, making a quick visual check for just that. "No, I don't want to infest my apartment with ticks." It just doesn't seem the time to say she occupies an entire floor as her personal residence.

A few beats of silence are allowed to pass.

Then she's making her move. "Heard someone say you've got really excellent vision, Jonas. You might be able to spot a tick on an animal's ass at fifty yards."

Handing off the rifle to Cat, Scott leans off of the fence and treads through the grass, arms folding across his chest as he looks out at the cans still standing. Jonas however is just laughing, shaking his head a little sheepishly. "Naw, naw, I can't do magnification or weird stuff like that…" there's silence for a moment as he considers Cat, then moves to stand just a little be beside and behind her, for safety's sake.

"You did hear right though, I've got the funny eyes." Pulling the frames of his sunglasses forward, Jonas' irises shift around in the a myriad of colors thorugh the spectrum. From red to orange and yellow, all the way up through shades of green and blue to an almost black shade of purple. "I can see all the visible and invisible spectrums, it's pretty cool." He tries not to sound too impressed with himself.

"Don't forget your ability is a handicap," Scott impresses with a lift of his brows, then looks over to Cat. "Jonas can't actually see. When the Ferry found him he was living in the shelter below St.Luke's, blind. Over time he aclimated, started seeing things better and… better. But without his power? He can't see anything. Blinded by the atomic flash in midtown, or at least that's his story."

"And I'm sticking to it," Jonas adds with a smirk after Scott finishes.

Taking the rifle, Cat examines it in quietude for some moments to check out how the sights work on this particular model, then how the action and ejections work while the two men are speaking. It's held very much like she's held firearms before, no trace of nervousness. The barrel is kept pointed in safe directions at all times.

"Impressive, Jonas," she replies in a tone which indicates she believes just that. "So… you can see what people give off, right? Infrared." His eyes are watched as they shift in that manner, causing her to let out a quiet whistle. Then she turns away, facing the target area they've been shooting toward, and raises the rifle to her shoulder. Aim is taken, her cheek pressed to the barrel and the opposite eye closed, breath being taken in and held as her finger contracts, giving the trigger a squeeze just sufficient enough to fire a shot.

Everybody run! The alleged sociopath's got a gun!


Scott's gone quiet, thoughtfulyl so, watching Cat with a silent gaze that implies he's puzzling out whatever it is she's trying to get from Jonas. Usually she doesn't just come to visit, Cat goes somewhere with a purpose. For the moment, Scott isn't inclined to get in the way, conversationally, either.

"Yep, I see all sorts of things. I don't do it much because it's disorienting, but I can see into the electromagnetic spectrum too, radio waves, microwaves, all that stuff. It's a lot of hard stuff to see, really distracting. I mostly stick to stuff like infrared and ultraviolet, that gets a lot of what I need to do done. I can do X-Ray too but… man, that just does not work like I thought it would. I have to be up close to something to see through it, and just… it's a mess."

Scott snorts out a laugh at that, which has Jonas scrubbing at the back of his head. "I hear there's a guy who can do just X-Ray vision, and apparently he's pretty good at it too, but… yeah, it's not all its cracked up to be."

"I've met that guy," Cat shares as she pulls the weapon down from her shoulder after taking that shot, "makes me feel like I should be wearing bra and panties of lead when he's around." She doesn't give up Flint Deckard's name, though. The bait has been taken, and she proceeds to reel in the Jonasfish. "Sounds like it's not always on, you can choose to use it or not. Can you see anything electromagnetic around us?"

"Yeah, 'course. Right now i'm using the regular visible spectrum, so it's like what anybody else sees. I'm pretty partial to runnin' around on infra-red after dark though, 'cause it makes my eyes all spooky red." There's a crack of a smile from Jonas at that admission, followed by a scuff of his sneakered toe in the dirt between the tall grass. "You do anything fancy?" He finally opts to ask, bright red brows lifting up in a thoughtful expression.

"Scott was telling me how his ability works, earlier. How he can put stuff in a sort've like… stasis or something, like in the movies about space travel." Peering past Cat to Scott, Jonas finds Harkess' poker-face somewhat inscrutable as he watches Cat take her shots with the low-caliber rifle, nodding slowly after each one.

"I've got this really incredible memory," Cat shares with a chuckle. "Hit me about nine years ago, in college. Like a lot of things, it's got advantages and drawbacks." She considers Jonas briefly, and makes another run at the target. "Check me out, just for kicks. Look for anything that seems to be coming from me, instead of hitting and bouncing off." The weapon is raised again, Cat going through the procedure of holding breath and closing one eye, then giving that gentle squeeze to trigger the round. "I get curious about things sometimes."

Scott's brows furrow at something Cat says, though it almost seems more like the timing of when her memory kicked in than anything. Jonas has his attention more squarely locked on Cat's question, however, with a quirk of his head to the side. "I don't even need to look to know the answer to that, everybody emits stuff. Heat, a little bit of electromagnetic energy, everyone. People like me and you do it differently though, like— " Jonas adjusts his sunglasses, squinting behind the black lenses. "Right now, you're like… more, than you were up on the road. So's me and Scott," Jonas notes, holding out one hand in front of himself.

"It's funny, when people like us get together I can see it easier. It looks like… heat ripples? I dunno, it's hard to explain to someone who sees things with normal eyes. It flows like water though, I guess everything does. But the more people like us are together, the easier it is to see, almost like… when one thing vibrates on a shelf when a subway car goes by, everything else vibrates a little? Maybe? I dunno…"

"Like proximity enhances the field," Cat muses, "we react to each other without even knowing it." So it's true, what Chandra Suresh spoke about. And, she speculates, perhaps by extension is the key to an augmenter's mojo. Drawing on the fields, harnessing and converting them somehow, and sending it back out. Innnteresting. "Might not be a good idea to advertise that much, though, Jonah. There are people we really don't need to learn about it. They might go trying to do something troublesome like build devices to detect the output, y'know?"

The rifle is moved into position again, another shot fired off. Though she's playing it down, save for the advice to keep it quiet, it may well occur to Scott this was the purpose she came to explore.

Shifting his weight to one foot, Scott seems to catch the jist of what's going on now, and as he leans away from the fence his excuse for departure is, "Going inside to fill up my coffee up." A ubiquitous cup that is always there, but also always not there. "Be back out…" treading past Jonas, scott makes his way out of the grassy field, jogging up the hill towards the cabin. Jonas stays behind, puzzled in small ways by the conversation with Cat.

"What the… fields? C'mon, it can't be that special, can it? I mean, I've seen it, somebody else probably has right? I mean, it isn't like the rest of it's anything we didn't know about? I mean… what is it I'm even seeing? That's all normal, right?"

"It's possible I'm paranoid," Cat replies with a quiet laugh, "people do say I sometimes think too much. Could be in this case they're right." She isn't about to clue the man in on the whole story, at least not yet, so her strategy is to downplay it in agreement with Jonah. Keeping with that, she raises the weapon and fires off two more shots, then offers it back to him. "Your turn."

Scott, however, is another matter. She'll have to catch up with him privately soon and lay out her hand.

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