Golden Snitch


ananda_icon.gif thompson_icon.gif

Scene Title Golden Snitch
Synopsis Behind the scenes, Mona Rao Agent Kaur makes her report on Phoenix to her real employers— including the contents of the entire Catabase. There's never a better time to be a mindreader.
Date September 11, 2009

Fort Hero - Thompson's Office

There are no family photographs on Eric Thompson, Snr.'s desk. It would be no secret amongst many associates that he is not without family, but apparently, the silver haired man sees absolutely no need to remind himself of this, or anyone else of this, while working. It's a sleekly furnished space, new and shiny and very him. Black leather, glass, steel, as if perhaps he were the CEO of some ruthless cooperation than a Company man and a field agent to boot. He sits back in his office chair, one foot lazily rocking himself on the chair's axis back and forth as he speaks into the slender cellphone.

"It would do you some good," he's saying, an easy smile playing out on his mouth, pale eyes hooded. "Get to know more people. Eugene, you've been a tremendous resource— and I only want you to be happy." Droll as ever, he glances towards the door when his appointment scheduled for the hour appears in its frame.

Rather than dismissing the agent, Thompson distractedly beckons her inside. "Yeah, I know who you answer to," he continues into the conversation. "And I'll call you whatever you want so long as you recognise a few things about who answers to me."

It 's been weeks, months, since Agent Kaur has seen fit to return to any base of Company operations, not only to guarantee her own safety but to accumulate enough information to be worth sharing all at once— and it's certainly her first venture into Fort Hero. The transition from the sterile, palely-lit, hospital-like hallways of Primatech to the clinging moisture and crudeness of subterranean tunnels is still something to get used to; the "writer" casts a last long, lingering glance at the walls above her head, eyebrows raised, as she lets herself in and settles into a seat in front of Thompson's desk. At least the environment within this supervisor's office is something reminiscent of that which she had left behind.

It helps that this facility is so far removed from the city, too, out past the furthest eastern reaches of New York's twining transit system. All the less chances of someone haphazardly spotting her (it could happen); Phoenix isn't an organization that has survived with a shortage of watchful eyes.

…On others. No reason to suspect Mona Rao. Of that, she's tirelessly worked to ensure. She looks no different than she would on any other day; gray slacks, a white blouse, dark hair vaguely curled and down around her shoulders. Attire appropriate for the immediate end of a workday; just, few people really know what kind of work. With legs crossed she lets her eyes come to rest on Thompson's face, just for a moment, in lightly curious, largely indifferent anticipation of the end of his call.

Thompson, himself, is dressed like the perfect professional. Shades of grey from suit to tie, and eyes of a similar colour dismiss Mona as she goes to sit down and wait for his call to wrap up. "Maybe that's because we didn't have a reason before. Look, Eugene. I'll be in touch." Any protests about this name die along with the clicking shut of the little black cellphone, Thompson's eyebrows going up in a what can you do? kind of expression, as he tosses the little device onto his desk.

"Some people. Can't work with 'em, can't work without 'em," he says, focusing on the woman in front of him. His characteristic, ever-present smirk does not go away, though it's gentled into something neutral as he studies her. "Well, Agent, long time no see. I'm sure we've got a lot to talk about."

There is no direct comment from Mona— Ananda— when Thompson finally does snap his cell closed, but a smirk of similar nature has already pulled one side of her mouth upwards. That's one thing that is different about her: arrogance. Arrogance without the context of larger rebelliousness; there is absolutely no contest with Thompson, implicit or otherwise; but still. Where once there would've been quietness, a serious, earnest smile, now she's projecting the aura of someone musingly, maliciously aware of where she is. What she's doing.

It's a relief. A bit of breathing room, finally, for the infiltrator's personality after months of constriction.

"We do," she assures with an audible breath through her nostrils, hefting several, thick manila folders above the level of her lap and letting her fingers drum on the top of one as she lays them down right between her and Thompson. "Phoenix keeps most of anything that's useful in a database. Charmingly easy to take; I'm not even sure why they called -me- in." Clearly she has, and has had, better things to do in her lifetime. "That's everything on file. What they have on Moab, Adam Monroe, Humanis First, the works."

"If you feel your time can be better spent elsewhere, Agent Kaur, you're welcome to take that up with Ms. Dalton," Thompson says, no change to his neutrality, though he does escape his slouch in the office chair. One hand, about as tan and weathered as the rest of him, reaches out to spin the file closer to him across the smooth surface of the desk, taking the opportunity to peel back the cover for a cursory glance. "Obviously, your expertise were a match. Let no task we set out for you be difficult."

There's a whisper of paper as he flicks through the intel set out in front of him, his expression unreadable as he assesses this prize brought into Company hands. Eventually, he asks, "How recent is this information?"

"Asking for a transfer, that's an option," The agent agrees without sounding like she's placed any real conviction behind the idea, leaning an elbow into one armrest; one finger idly twirls itself around and around a strand of hair. "Unless you wanted to alter the memories of all of Phoenix, though, I'm afraid I'm stuck there. It'd take months, starting someone else from scratch…" Her gaze falls on the topmost folder as Thompson rifles through its contents, not bothering to conceal a slight but distinct pronouncement of her smirk. "I added my last touch to it yesterday. Chesterfield keeps the databases open for any trusted member to read whenever they want."

There is plenty of time to read it. Preferably crunched down into need-to-know dotpoints, or perhaps later over a glass of bourbon. For now, Thompson closes the file, and lets his fingers tangle together, resting his hands on top of it as he regards Ananda with something that could count as approval. It's never a flattering thing, coming from him, but it could be worse. "Convenient," he concedes. A tick of a second goes by in thought, or perhaps deliberately inserted punctuation between his words, before he asks; "What do you know about Elle Bishop's relationship with Phoenix?" The casual lilt of his voice makes this a conversational question rather than true interrogation, lifting his chin towards her.

"To be honest, not so much. Boss's daughter hasn't been so helpful, huh. Mm." As Ananda hasn't actually been around, physically or otherwise, there' s no real reason for her to know all about that last detail. But as safeguarded versus psychic intrusion as Thompson's mind might naturally be, the general gist of his thoughts is enough to be translated in what wisps do filter through. Little maggots wriggling through a mesh that could be tighter yet. "Their file for Bishop has 'potentially extreme' for her danger level, so I know she's not all lovey-dovey with them, at least. If you wanted me to, I could set aside some time. Ask her myself." The tone of her voice stays entirely casual, but Thompson knows full well what she is; that, combined with the offhand reading she had admitted to only seconds earlier, should imply only too well what the telepath means by 'ask.'

"See what you can get through Phoenix themselves. Elle can be handled on the other side," Thompson dismisses, before returning his gaze towards the reasonably fat file before him. The works, she had said. Good news is not something that twists his smirk any wider than it already is, and besides, he hasn't read it yet. All the same— "You've done good work, Agent Kaur. I'll see that this intel is disseminated through the right hands and put to good use. And there's been no compromises to your cover so far?"

"Nah. Helena Dean's still kind of skittish, but that's more to do with what she thinks of telepaths in general, than." Ananda lets a simple shrug answer the rest of that statement for her: 'you know.' Almost as a deliberate afterthought, she fishes through one pocket of her slacks for a last, single lined sheet of paper, this one neatly folded, which she tosses onto the desk on top of it all. "One last thing. This is all I've managed to get just from being around 'em. Memories, some surface and some deep; some probably aren't all that useful, but that's not up to me to decide." Thompson'll find handwritten notes, some notably longer than others. Gillian Childs (whose entry looks particularly interesting), Helena, Cat— among several others.

The page is picked up calmly, glanced over, and slipped into the file already set out for him. There's a squeak of chair wheels as Thompson pushes himself back from his desk, though not to stand up - he reaches a hand to lever open a desk drawer, to find a temporary home for this new information. "I'm sure the thoughts and details about what goes on in the heads of Phoenix will make for an interesting read." With his voice dryer than Botswana, it's hard to tell what inflection he's putting on those words. "Thanks again, Agent Kaur— " if he ever actually thanked her until just then— "for your work. I should let you get back to the real world, unless there was anything else you wanted to share."

When Ananda rolls her own chair back a moment after being bidden to, it is so she can stand. She hadn't been sitting down long enough to merit a proper stretch, but nonetheless, her movement into a standing position is a leisurely, fluidly unhurried one."Interesting? You should try living it," she counters with only somewhat less wryness. "Yeah, that'll all I got. You're welcome, and thanks for your time, Mr. Thompson." With that expected but casually ingratiating comment, she takes her leave empty-handed, some suggestion of self-assured smugness seeming to stay in the air behind her.

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