Fear Is The Enemy


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Scene Title Fear Is The Enemy
Synopsis Sent by her father, Minea approaches Cat.
Date June 3, 2009

Somewhere in Manhattan

It's 16:53, and here Cat stands waiting to meet someone shadowy. It's not that unusual a thing for her, being contacted in this way and making arrangements such as this. The chosen place is a corner of Manhattan little used due to its state of disrepair, that having existed since Gabriel's murdering ways prompted Peter to go after him and lose it, thus nuking part of the city. She's worked with Gabriel now on the Moab operation, and compared notes on Tyler Case, but she never lets it out of mind entirely what that man's history is. How the laying of blame upon him isn't entirely false. If he doesn't cut open heads, Peter doesn't go to face him, and doesn't lose it.

Would that it were so simple, really, as even that. The roles of Linderman and Angela Petrelli, accused by Arthur. What Rajas said about Nathan's '06 election being rigged. Formuale, coups, Kaito slain, Adam Monroe, her parents. Adoptive parents, allegedly. She still needs to secure a DNA sample and verify that.

Minutes tick away to the time her meeting is supposed to happen, Cat traveling a journey of thoughts and memories prompted by being here alone and having time to think. She is armed with two silenced . 40 caliber pistols and has both guitar case and backpack over opposite shoulders, clad in jeans and a tank top to look like a street musician, complete with partial face shrouding Yankees cap.

Minea knows who she's meeting with, Cat doesn't. THe text message had been quick. Father gave me your name. Choose place to meet. It had been signed Ms. Chance. No more, no less. So across the street in the shadow of a building is a woman of many layers, the same blunt blonde cut, sunglasses and a pageboy hat pulled low. Measures taken to disguise herself from Cat. Same as she wore to the meeting with her father. Rain sucks really, and so far that was the only thing that was failing in this clandestine meeting.

Her thoughts were nowhere near so numerous as Cat's. Mostly pertaining to Magnes and his running around and making amends, of the company and Pinehearst and Goodman's trust in an agent that had failed him and yet surpassed his expectations.

Minea'd been early and just stood waiting, watching, checking to see if Cat was coming alone or whether there was back up. She's got no silencers like Cat, but she's got more weapons, and of varying types on her own person as always.

Soon enough she pulls out her iPhone and checks the time display on it, then puts it back on her hip. 17:00. Cat begins to scan the area calmly, alertly, looking for signs of anyone approaching to make this connection. She is alone, there's not a trace of another person near or with her here. Her voice murmurs under breath. "Miss Chance, who and where are you?" Even the shadows are peered at, in the case this could be someone like Richard Cardinal who would literally step or speak from the shadows. And there are a number of those here now.

There is someone else, but he's a safe distance away with some super hearing turned up. Playing Minea's backup. Satisfied, the Company agent makes her way over to Cat, throughly disguised, heading along the sidewalk and towards the terrorist slash artist. It's only when she's close enough that the woman even says anything. "Ms. Chesterfield?"

Her head turns toward the voice and the woman it came from, taking a measure of her. A span of moments pass before she speaks in reply, the opening being a mild correction. "Doctor Chesterfield, actually. And you would be Miss Chance, I surmise." Cat's features display a neutral expression, very much a poker face. "To what, other than the machinations of Father, do I owe this pleasure?"

She is intrigued, wary, and alert. Such visitors could have a wide range of intentions and agendas. From Edward Ray with his unsupported request to Rajas, Knox, and Rickham. Then there's DHS, Company, Pinehearst, maybe even remnants of the Vanguard looking for revenge. And given this woman's disguise, the possibilities branch out further. Someone wanting to be incognito, obviously. General principles? Because she knows the power of her memory? Both. They remain mysteries, the concealment is sufficient to escape recognition by comparison. For now, at least.

Lawrence is settled in with his sniper rifle, unpacked from it's unobtrusive case and assembled, all matte black high-ended deadliness. He's got his sights on Minea and company, but he's focused on his listening. He has already shooed away a pidgeon for being noisy. Outdoors, secured up high in a little nook on a roof overlooking the meeting place, he waits.

"I was contacted by a Mr. Goodman. I'm his insurance policy," Minea starts out, in the low gravelly register of her 'Ms. Chance' cover. "He instructed me to contact your Father, who then instructed me to contact you. That there are other parties that are attempting to do the same that Mr. Goodman was trying to do. Bring down The Company and Pinehearst. Has Mr. Chesterfield guided me wrong?"

She's wary, and perhaps warier still, when this topic is raised but it doesn't show on her features. Cat regards the woman in silence across a stretch of seconds before speaking. There are risks, she could be working for Pinehearst to discover if her father is up to anything Arthur would find unpleasant, but Father did point at her. "Roger Goodman," Cat begins, "was apparently executed by ruthless people because he was working on behalf of a second group of ruthless people, to expose their history. If you're his insurance policy, then what you're saying is prior to his execution he discovered how ruthless the second group is and decided to undertake a third path, only to run entirely out of time."

"The key issue here is power. One group has a modicum of power and wants to keep it. The other group wants to seize that power and replace the first. My interest, simply, is to see both absent from such unsupervised power. I'm sure you have, Miss Chance, heard the maxim regarding power and its effects."

Lawrence spends a moment pondering whether or not he's ruthless. Intriguing. Is Len ruthless? Before the brain in his overly large noggin strays too far from the task at hand, he tries to focus on listening in. Who needs a wire tap with Lawrence around? Well, okay. Fine. It's still handy.

"Power Corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. Everyone wants power. It makes the world go round." Ms Chance looks around as if checking to make sure no one is close, hands still in her pockets. "Roger Goodman seems to have met an untimely end, and was unable to carry out what he was trying to do. Bring the Company down to its knees and Pinehearst to its own end as well. He realized that bringing just it down would mean that Pinehearst would rise up. They made promises that couldn't be fulfilled and came to understand that the one was no better than the other. So he began to move against both in secret. Not secret enough it seems."

"In the event of his supposed death, information was passed to me as his insurance policy to carry on, he trust that I would see his reasoning and that I would sympathize. He had nothing more to give me than the name and number of your father as a sympathizer and possible access to damning information. I have access to the company. I will carry on his plan, because he was right. Chop off the head of the one and another will just follow. He won't talk with me further, except through you, the danger is too great and I understand. He says that you are part of a third party that wishes to see the goals of Roger Goodman fulfilled."

"He's in a precarious position," Cat replies with a slow nod. "There is a person at Pinehearst who has an ability to find people wherever they are. That may have something to do with his caution, and wisely so." Her eyes regard the woman again in silence for some moments, perhaps making an assessment. "I presume you also are in such a position, given the disguise you operate under. Also wise, given the execution of Mr. Goodman. That in itself demonstrates the lengths Primatech will go to protect themselves from being exposed. And the nature of secrets they conceal." She pauses again here.

"What I've learned, through Father, is he once worked with Primatech, well over a decade ago. He now is assisting with a project at Pinehearst. Through Father I've also learned the names of some Primatech founders. And from one of those founders, who now is a key figure at Pinehearst, I've learned still more. At the core, this is very much an affair centering around a few families. It is alleged some of the Primatech founders pulled off a coup, rigging the Presidency to fall according to their design. This, and other things, I sadly have zero proof of. If I had, it would've been made public."

"The goal of Pinehearst is to resurrect a Primatech long ago abandoned, the recipe for which was locked away by one of the Founders. To recreate a formula which can confer Evolved abilities by injection."

Lawrence's eyebrows arch upward in alarm. A formula that can confer Evolved abilities by injection? He adjusts his grip on his rifle. No. No, no, no. Then I wouldn't be special anymore. Then I'd just be nobody again. No! Pay attention…

Thank God she has the wire. So they can listen over this again and again till it sinks in. What the hell had Goodman got himself into? "They're making some sort of… evolved cocktail. Do you know how far into they are right now? Proof will need to be found, before I can bring it to light. I need to find out as much on my end too. Copies of files, tapes, anything. It's going to be hard enough as it is." Minea shakes her head. "Which third party are you affiliated with?" She already knew which one and so did the others.

"It's believed the recipe was locked away by Kaito Nakamura and kept there, Primatech under his advice abandoned the program after a lab disaster destroyed the stocks they had of it. There are, reportedly, three components to the master recipe. One of them is now in the hands of Pinehearst. Where the others are, I've no idea. It's my assessment the key to a number of things is the formula. If it is successfully recreated, the absence of Mr. Goodman no longer matters." Cat lapses back to silence for some moments to let that sink in, then resumes.

"It would give the ability to create Evolved abilities in selected military personnel for the FRONTLINE program, and pad out its numbers more than would be otherwise possible. This provides leverage, in turn, for getting the Federal government to rake Primatech over the coals and expose everything anyway."

There's a sigh from the incognito agent. "What is needed to bring down the Company? Mr. Goodman never specified. If you can get me the proof for Pinehearst, and I can get what you and your third party feel is the necessary proof to bring down the Company, I'll put my ass on the line to do it."

"Information," Cat replies calmly. "On a number of fronts. I could go out and tell all I know to the press, and other authorities, but it would be quickly discredited. Making things stick requires proof. Proof of Primatech having had a thing called the Shanti virus which was stolen for an entity called the Vanguard by Dr. Odessa Knutson and nearly released. Proof of the prior iteration of that formula, which in experimental stages caused a rejection which made people melt. Had the Shanti virus been released, it may well have merged with failed trial versions of attempts in recreating the serum from scratch and become all the more deadly. The organization I'm with prevented that release, with no assistance from DHS, and as reward some of our members were thrown into a secret prison. We are Phoenix, I'm sure you're aware of us."

"Beyond that, information in general on activities Primatech would kill to conceal. Of particular interest are the Founders and their activities, in specific Daniel Linderman and Angela Petrelli. Other founders are Charles Deveaux, Kaito Nakamura, and Arthur Petrelli. I don't, sadly, know how complete that roster is."
Lawrence's eyebrows go up, up, up again. He's privvy to all kinds of interesting conversation. This is much more interesting than listening to people hit on each other in bars. Also, productive.

Minea studies Cat, before she lifts a hand, pulling away the shades. The hair doesn't match and neither does the voice, but she figures, what the hell. It's Minea Dahl. "I know about the Shanti Virus and you know why. I'll see what I can do Cat. I didn't much appreciate being a limp mess on my apartment floor. We'll bring them down to their mother fucking knees. I'll see what I can get."

Her response is a tilting head and a slow forming grin. "Well, isn't this interesting. Agent Dahl. I salute your resourcefulness. Well done." A question forms, expressed by Cat next. "A limp mess on your apartment floor? That wasn't connected to us in any way I've been told of."

Lawrence winces and makes a little 'tsk' noise. "Tsk." He doesn't much like Minea giving her name, but he doesn't have much choice and, above that, he trusts her. Though it seems he won't have to shoot anyone today, he keeps the rifle raised and ready. Ow his arms.

"No. Wasn't connected to Phoenix. I wasn't sure whether you'd trust if I came as myself. I'll take the chance now. I'm serious though. Between everything you've told me, and everything I've heard and Goodman's insurance policy he delivered to me. I'll do it. I'll put my ass on the line and be the one who does what was seen in the future. Carry on Goodman's plan."

"Keep your head down, Agent. As said, ruthless people are in play. I have to say, Goodman having a plan is news to me. I met him once, when I visited Pinehearst to hear them out. It would seem he had a change of heart. Not that it matters, we came upon the decision to work against both entities on our own. It always had a feel of Nazis versus Soviets about it all. And the interconnections among founders give it the hallmarks of a vendetta between factions of people who started Primatech."

"It's so insidious, the way this works," Cat muses. "A thing like Frontline is probably needed if Evolved and not are ever to live peacefully on this planet. There have to be ethics and applications of law to power use, after all. Like telepathy against one's consent being declared rape and handled the same way, in the open and by law. So many examples, really. I should write them down and circulate them. The trouble with FRONTLINE, though, is how easily it can become a Gestapo depending on who gives the orders. If the Company continues having fingers in that pie, it's dangerous. If Pinehearst gets fingers in that pie, even more dangerous. The way violence is increasing all around the world, people may buy into it without thinking." She starts to make her exit from the location, turning back to face Minea from a few feet away.

"Fear is the enemy, because it's the friend of those who seek power."

Minea just watches the woman walk away before eventually she does the same and this small corner of Manhattan once again returns to its desolate state, with only the wind and a scurrying rat or cockroach to interrupt.

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