For Her Sake


len_icon.gif sabra_icon.gif

Scene Title For Her Sake
Synopsis Len comes to Sabra with a request for classified information.
Date June 13, 2009

Primatech Research: Sabra's Office

The office is as it has been ever since Sabra took up residence — its warm-toned decor a marked contrast to the dreary, overcast morning outside. The elderly woman sits behind the desk, computer on but not currently being attended to as she flips through a paper file. Ashton seems to be putting other files in order, transferring them from a cabinet into a rather unassuming cardbord box. Paper rustling is the dominant sound of the room, silence weighted with the comfortable companionship of old, old friends.

When Len Denton arrives to someone else's office, it's either bad news or he wants something. Everything else, he normally has others come to see him. In this case, probably the one person he'd never ask to come to his office is Sabra. For one, she doesn't look like she's much of a sports fan and might not be to inclined to sit and watch a game with him on his nice sized TV screen. For two — Well, there's no two. Only one.

So, he makes the long walk to her office and raps his knuckles on her door. The tall black cowboy then waits to be asked inside.

It's when people arrive without appointments that there's definitely something amiss. Sabra glances over the top of the pages in her hands to Ashton, who sets his current project aside and moves to open the door. The mute aide inclines his head to Len, directing him into the room.

"Len," Sabra greets with a welcoming smile. "An unexpected surprise. Ten minutes later and you would have missed me." She waves towards the chairs before her desk. "Please, sit. Would you care for a cup of tea?" Standard hospitality, as Sabra practices it.

Tea. Not quite the Cowboy's thing, but of course he responds with. "Certainly. Tea would be delightful." Which would be amusing to hear from a nearly seven foot tall man with a cowboy hat on his head and dusty boots on his feet. He sinks himself into the offered chair, setting a file on his lap.

"A little birdie told me that would be the case, so I decided that timing was perfect for a visit. Since I rarely bother you with agent issues, I was hoping you'd spare me a few minutes of your valuable time — and offer me a few answers as well."

At a slight gesture from Sabra, Ashton ducks into the next room. "You know as well as any that the answers depend upon the questions," she replies, as she closes the folder. Interlacing her fingers, the old lady rests her hands upon the unmarked manila surface, regarding Agent Denton with pleasant curiousity. Ashton returns in short order, placing a mug of tea in front of their guest, along with cream and sugar should Len choose to avail himself of them.

"What's troubling you?"

Deciding the 'cowboy' thing would be the drink the tea plain, Len takes a sip and he considers the taste for a moment. Kind of blah, but he takes a second sip and sets the mug down and lifts the folder up. "I was brought this folder, given to an agent by a…" Pause. "…former associate here. You'll know who as soon as you start to read. I've been asked to verify the authenticity of the data. Seems to be out of my clearance level, so I've come to ask you if you can give me anything at all on what is here. The — cooperation of this particular agent could depend on the answers given."

He sets the folder in front of her on her desk.

The smile never leaves Len's face as he listens to her and nods. "That is a good question. I could say this agent did us a great service recently and should be rewarded for her efforts, but instead I'll say that I think it's the right thing to do."

The elderly lady's face crinkles in a smile that, for all its warmth, never quite seems to reach her eyes. "'The right thing', Agent Denton, is one of the most misapplied and dangerous phrases in the human lexicon."

Sabra is silent for a time, her gaze never wavering from his face. "Do you," she finally continues, "and this other agent both understand the consequences of what you propose?"

His tea cup sits on the desk, untouched after that first couple of sips as Len takes his hands and folds them across his lap. "I'm hoping it doesn't have to come to that. The information will be kept between myself and the agent in question. The fact of the matter is that if that information is 'truth', then we may have other issues to deal with. Giving the agent the 'truth' of this matter will show that we have faith in their judgement to remain true to the Company."

"The real issue we have here isn't about 'that'.." meaning the folder, ".. but it's if given the truth, will she still be true to our cause. I think if we give her the truth, then she will be. Which will only solidify her loyalty to this unit. If we continue to lie to her, and she finds out the truth later — well, I would hate to think of that could happen. As it is, we've far too much hidden away from public consumption as it is, that this little bit — is nothing. I think the risk is worth it."

The elderly woman's face crinkles in another small smile. "'Nothing' is perhaps an overstatement. I hope you are correct, Agent Denton. For her sake." Sabra opens the file, then, expression focused as she flips through the pages.

She does not speak in the time it takes her to assimiliate the situation and the question; does not speak afterwards, but looks up to Ashton, hands moving through a sequence of graceful gestures. The aide bows his head, and departs through the main door into the hallway.

"Ashton will bring you a file shortly. It is to be returned to him when you have what you have requested." For good or for ill. And now you may go.

Politely, Len dips the brim of his cowboy hat and stands, slipping from the office. He doesn't take the folder with him. He may never see it again. He may get a visit from someone unexpected. It's all part of the job, right? He whistles a happy little country tune as he makes his way back down to his own office. Whatever happens — happens.

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