Her Father's Daughter...


cat_icon.gif mason_icon.gif

Scene Title Her Father's Daughter…
Synopsis … Cat is and isn't.
Date May 4, 2009

Central Park, Tavern On The Green

A warm sunlight filters down through towering maple trees, and despite the resplendant serenity of springtime weather, there is little serenity to be had outside of the Tavern on the Green. The din of conversation is quiet on approach, but the busy pace of lunch at this famous establishment creates a cacophony of conversations more readily heard on the way into the building beneath its quintessential red awning. Within, the posh and well-to-do of New York's elite enjoy the overpriced but fine dining atmosphere, surrounded by the scenic beauty of New York's Central Park.

It's hard to imagine here, that just half a block away the city's most jagged scar can so readily be seen rising up from the treeline. But it's not Manhattan's mortal wound that has brought Catherine Chesterfield here, rather a meeting many years overdue. The target of that very meeting sits by one of the large windows viewing the rolling grass hills beyond the Tavern, hands folded and gaze distant behind the lenses of his glasses.

Mason Chesterfield looks much as Cat remembers him, a tired and world-worn man that refuses to let himself be beaten down by society. Though today the tiredness in his features seems heavier, the wrinkles on his skin just a bit deeper, and the relaxed nature of his posture just a bit more soft than he's ever presented to his daughter.

For all of the outward appearances that have not changed over time, it's the look of weariness that is new. Not so much in its presence, but in the absence of anything other than the weariness, as if the life that Mason Chesterfield has chosen to live has finally caught up to him. Perhaps, in that way, father and daughter might yet have something in common.

A life of difficult choices.

She arrives ahead of the time assigned for their meeting, clad as befits this venerable restaurant and her academic achievement: an ensemble of muted colors in jacket, skirt, and heels with complementary blouse buttoned all the way up from Brooks Brothers fit for any courtroom or law office in the nation. Hair is pinned up in an equally professional manner, not passing the bottom of her collar in the back when standing. Most persons clad as she is also have a briefcase, but Doctor Catherine Chesterfield does not. She brings with her just a modest purse held over one shoulder.

She catches sight of him and makes her way over to that location, taking in the surroundings and the faces along the way, as well as making an assessment of the chances they may be overheard in what she has plans to discuss today.

"Hello, Father," the holder of three Yale degrees offers in greeting amid a calm expression when she comes within speaking distance.

Blinking at the sound of the voice, Mason looks up in abject surprise when he hears Cat's voice. For a time he's just silent, an impassive expression of something more uncertain crossing his face, at least until a smile slowly spreads across those tired features, "My God, look at you." The words come in the way a father would speak after seeing a beloved daughter after as long as they have been estranged. He rises up from his seat in a manner rather unbecoming of him, so much more erratic than he seemed long ago. Furthering the divergence from the way Cat remembers her father, is the way he approaches her, and simply wraps his arms around her shoulder, leaning in to lightly press a kiss to his daughter's cheek.

Leaning back, Mason lays a hand on both of Cat's shoulders, an unusually emotional smile spread across his lips as he bows his head, blinking back something that might have been tears from his eyes, if only how improbable that seems from Cat's perspective. "I— your mother would be so proud of you. just— just look at you," he continues with a warm smile before finally motioning towards the empty seat across from his at the table.

"Oh— God here I am making a scene, please," he starts to step away, awkwardly, "please come on, sit down we— it's so good to see you…"

She is confused by his manner of greeting her at first, but doesn't let on as his gestures are returned. The embrace is accepted, the kiss returned, a slight smile forming which spreads some as he speaks. To have him proud of her is a longtime goal let go of a few years past, she having concluded being accepted by him would need to be enough. Law school had been attended, and graduated from, then she hadn't joined a law firm but instead opted to explore music. And become an active patriot whose activities could be given a variety of labels depending on viewpoint. But that Mother would be proud doesn't cross her mind; her impression had been the woman wanted to marry her off to a future politician or CEO as glorified breeding stock who played the same society games most of her background would.

This manifests in a mild expression of surprise as she disengages and moves to occupy the indicated seat, one hand smoothing out her skirt in so doing. "Thank you, Father. I've been quite active since coming here."

"I…" Something seems to distract Mason for a moment, causing him to stare down at the white tablecloth vacantly. "Yes— yes I would imagine so," he finally finishes, in something of an absent-minded manner. "I wasn't entirely sure you'd show up, given how our last face-to-face conversation went, but— we were all a bit invested in that particular argument, and I— it's been something I've regretted for a while now, your mother and I both."

Coming to settle down in his seat, mason leans back in his chair, brushing on ehand over his forehead before looking out to the garden vista beyond the windows, then back to Cat again. "I ah— your mother wanted to join us today but— she's out of town on business right now, things are… they're rather active at the moment, and…" Looking down to the table again, mason idly rubs his index finger over a small brown spot where his coffee stained the cloth. "How have you been, I mean— that sounds horrible," his brow furrows, eyes finally lifting up to make Contact with Cat's again. "I've not seen you in a dog's age, and that's the best I can come up with?"

"I remember," Cat replies softly, her mind calling it all up with unerring detail and playing it out for a moment, indulging, before placing it aside to again focus on him. "There've been a lot of things between us, Father," the grown offspring comments quietly. "I remember everything with few exceptions since early in my second year at our alma mater." The smile returns there, she wondering if he will understand her meaning 9in full. "And I've been well. There's been grief in recent months, and loss, some endeavors with results other than I had hoped, but also grand successes. We…" She pauses to collect her thoughts, make certain of her phrasings.

"Nearly seven years ago I developed a most extraordinary attribute. It's very valuable to me."

Teeth tug at Mason's lower lip hesitantly, "Yes I— I imagine you would have, wouldn't you?" There's no surprise or shock on Mason's face, more regret than anything else. Reaching up to rub one hand across his cheek, he averts his gaze towards the garden out the window again. This is in some aspects the reaction Cat had imagined, that her father always knew or always assumed, but the way in which he's handling the revelation is something different, more sad than pleased.

"Grand successes…" he says in a hushed tone of voice, finally breathing in a deep breath before shifting his focus back to Cat. "I— I'm very sorry," his brows furrow together, "for everything, for— pushing you as hard as we did. For not being content with you as you were, for trying to make you something you— " he taps fingers on his forehead liightly, "Your mother and I made so many mistakes raising you… It's a mircale you even want to have anything to do with us."

"You've nothing to apologize for, Father," she tells him with a shake of her head. "Children often don't understand the value of what their parents aim toward. Not all pushing is bad, it creates the drive to succeed, and the truth is I've needed it." Cat lets out a quiet chuckle.

"The truth is when you demanded I go for pre-law, I dug my heels in and decided to go for that and music. Because I did that, because you pushed me, I developed my extraordinary attribute. It came when I needed it most. So, being honest and being fair, I have to thank you for that."

The words seem to have the opposite reaction on Mason, causing him to sink down a little in his chair before he affords Cat a subtle nod. "I— you're generous with the appreciation, but— " he cuts himself off, just giving a shake of his head. "I'm sorry that when I called you I might have sounded a little shaken up, I've been— it's been difficult lately, as I can imagine your surprise in seeing me out here." With a sigh, Mason finally returns his attention to his coffee, stirring the spoon inside slowly with a muffled clink of metal on ceramic. "I'm working out in New Jersey, actually — western."

"That— isn't really relevent though, is it?" He smiles, somewhat awkwardly, and removes his spoon from the coffee, laying it down on a napkin at the cup's side, letting the droplets that clung to the spoon bleed out into the fabric. "So— I take it you're living in the city. It— that's rather brave of you, all things considered." His lips press together, voice tight, "Were you here— back when things went awry recently? For— the blackouts and the riots?"

He doesn't look at all like the psychopath Tyler Case accused him of being, Cat notes inwardly. She lapses to silence as a server approaches and inquires of their desires, to let him choose first if he will, then making her own. She has a taste for fine food and is a woman not opposed to eating meat. Prime rib steak, baked potato, mushrooms, salad. But with cola rather than alcohol.

During her silence there is speculation about other things said of the man who collaborated in her conception. Does he have some variety of probability perception? Can he literally see the odds of what she might say at a certain time, thus the reason to his question of riots and blackouts? It's only when the server has departed and privacy is theirs again she answers.

"I was," Cat tells him, "and there's a story behind those I have an inside track on. You may or may not believe it, but… it's a really good one."

"Phoenix." mason states, staring down at the coffee as if it were the pool in which an oracle would divine great mysteries, instead of a steaming cup of black Columbian. It's the only thing he ordered, another cup of coffee, no meal in sight. "Yes I'm… aware of your associations, it's partly why I wanted to talk to you. The— the people I work for, they were the ones who let me in on that little detail," and there comes the first volley of truth amid the pleasantries and the deceptions. "They're very interested in you, Catherine. Very— very interested in all of your friends as well."

Quietly preparing a single packet of sugar into his coffee, Mason stirs it again with a clink of his spoon against the inside of the cup. "It wasn't business that made me call you, but— your mother and I, we both feel it's about high time we come clean with— with quite a bit that we haven't been entirely honest to you with. You were young, though, but now— now it's high time you know the truth about who you are."

She chuckles slightly, her eyes opening a bit wider, and she wonders if he knew of her associations because he saw them in some form of precognition, if he knew because he was told as he claims, or both. Cat has interest in what he will tell her. "It seems we both came here with the same purpose, Father," she muses. "If nothing else is achieved today, it would seem we've at least mastered a degree of familial timing." Fingers curl around the glass of Pepsi brought to her by the server whose presence causes another burst of silence and she drinks. On setting it down, eyes rest on the man's face and two words pass her lips.

"I'm listening."


The word eats through Mason like acid through bone, his jaw tensing as he stares down at the cup of coffee, "Catherine Chesterfield died on April 30th, 1986." His eyes remain open, focused solely in his reflection in the coffee, "Complications— from heart surgery, she— she was two years old." Swallowing tightly, Mason tries to keep the cadence of his speech level, tries not to leave too much of an opening for her to interject over this.

"You were born to Alisa and Harold Forrest," he finally stops stirring the coffee, realizing just how anxious the motions must look. It's in that stillness that reddened eyes look up beneath the shields of his wire-framed glasses, "Your name was Jane Forrest, and— you were born on September 16th, 1983. The Forrests— were scientists working for an organization called the Company," he doesn't bother to explain, just rolls into further words, "colleagues of ours that worked in the biological research division, they— died in an accident that claimed the lives of several of our scientists. Since— since we had just recently lost Catherine, and… and since you were so young, you were given to us for safe keeping, it— we passed you off as our own daughter, as Catherine, because— " Mason brings a hand up to shield his eyes, looking down at the table.

"I'm sorry." The words come out as a hushed mumble, fingers sweeping over his brow, "I'm so sorry, Catherine. We— all we wanted was a better future for you, and Charles thought it would be best if you were raised as our own, instead of the stigma that it would have carried otherwise. But I just— " he finally cracks, voice breaking some, forehead resting on the heel of his palm.

Her expression shifts by degrees as she listens, becoming shocked and stony. There could be anger behind her eyes, a glimmer of it shows, but more prevalent is deep surprise and forced stoicism. Catherine is tempered in these recent months. Things of disturbing nature are handled with a measure of poise, as one might expect could become true if the full story behind how that crater not so far away from them was broadcast into her brain. There are questions forming, things to ask, things to say, and after a stretch of silence which might approach and pass sixty seconds, only one of them is spoken in a hushed voice. There is a story here still to be heard.

"Who is Charles, Father?"

Of all the things to ask, that is the one Mason was least expecting, but the one he is most emotionally prepared to answer. "Charles Deveaux, one of the Company's founders, he— he was a good friend to our family before he passed away a few years ago." Swallowing tensely, Mason looks up with an awkward expression as the server returns, though when she sees the look in Mason's eyes, there's just an awkward smile as she raises one hand and steps away from the table, giving space to the conversation. Perhaps she realizes Mason's coffee is just fine.

"Your mother wanted to be here, for— for when we told you the truth, but there's just so much going on right now, I— " he hisses out a breath, looking up to Cat again with a weary expression on his face. "No matter what this sounds like, we— we're still your parents, Catherine. I— I'd never wish to change that for the world. For anything. I— I didn't lie when I said I was proud of you, I— I truly am."

Her eyes close briefly. That name. Deveaux. "I've recently come to believe there are few coincidences, Father." Cat still addresses him by that title. "There is, was, a building near here bearing that name. I became a bit familiar with it. That building was his?" She eyes the glass of cola for a long moment, drinking of it finally, before speaking further.

"It was very badly damaged when a faction made an attempt on President-elect Rickham and some of their operatives used it as a sniper's roost. One of our operatives battled them there, and the structure got the worst of it. A hollow victory, that operation," she murmurs. "We saved him, there was so much hope tied up in his Presidency, and in the end he just walks away."

"You took in a child who needed a family, raised her as yours, when you didn't have to. There's no blame in that, nothing to apologize for. And in honesty, well… we've each kept secrets."

Nodding slowly, Mason closes his eyes and lays his hands flat on the table, "Allen Rickham didn't walk away." He says in that quiet, studious voice that once was far less emotional than this. The rigidity of the conversation, Cat's almost mathematical cadence to her speech makes it somewhat easier on him, were she to break down, he'd be unable to keep his thoughts under control. "The United States Government had perfected its evolved test kit months prior to their public release, and the entire upper echelon of the government was tested— incliding Allen. When it came to light that he tested positive, demands were set to force him to vacate the seat for the good of his family."

Mason hesitates continuing, then just gives a slow nod of his head, "He was robbed of his position, from what I've gathered. Mind you this is all second-hand information I've heard from Arthur over the last few weeks, it's been a harrowing month and a half, Catherine. I— God there's so much I want to tell you."

She lets out a slow breath, her eyes closing, the voice still hushed when it speaks. "That changes little, only how I see him. The victory of defeating the attempt on his life is still hollow. It turned out he didn't need help not being assassinated so much as a smokescreen. Men of iron aren't so much troubled by bullets. Lasers were more effective. The real danger was of him being outed, which we prevented. For a short time. He wasn't exposed publicly, but was exposed enough."

"It's been a whirlwind of many sorts since last September, Father. I started life in New York, came across and into the organization, lost my lover to the people who tried to assassinate Allen Rickham… She got taken and couldn't be rescued. A man named Ethan murdered her. Then we took on the Vanguard directly, late January. The blackouts, the riots. Vanguard was using the power plant that was wrecked. There was no other choice for the team there, than for its leader to bring it down on his own head. Had we failed…" That's a thing she won't voice.

"Arthur. Arthur Petrelli? I've been told he's alive. One of three things is true. It's really him, it's not him and people are claiming falsely it is, or someone has appropriated his appearance and resumed his life. I'd hoped to ask Peter if he ever saw the body. But the chance didn't come." She got sent to West Prairieland, CO/KS/NE.

"I'd like to hear everything, Father. I'll listen to it all."

For all his attempts to be as stoic and emotionless as Jennifer can pretend to be at times, Mason's true weight of guilt and sadness shows through in the creases that deepen in his forehead and in the lines of his cheeks. Closing his eyes, he bows his head, realizing just how much Catherine had become like her mother — at least her adoptive one. "Arthur… didn't die." It's the first thing he can comment on to any veracity, "we thought he had, the whole Company believes he's dead. He— he faked his death, when an attempt was made on his life by Angela Petrelli. From what he's told us, Arthur discovered that Angela had designs with Daniel Linderman to destroy New York City and use his son Peter as an instrument for this."

There's a slouch of Mason's shoulders, "Regretably, he was unable to prevent her from doing so. I— I had no idea any of this was going on. I'd largely retired from Company work shortly after Arthur's funeral. They still came to me for specific projects, I— " there's a hesitant pause, "Your mother and I— we're like you, Catherine."

A gentle smile threatens to show on his lips, but it is ultimately replaced by a frown. "The Company classifies my ability as Hypercognition, my mind is capable of multi-tasking thousands of actions at once, able to make calculations and predictions on the fly based on available data." Not quite what she imagined, but so very close in the end.

"Your mother's is classified as Biological Transmutation, allowing her to manipulate the genetic structure of living matter to reshape it's very base chemical and molecular nature…" It seems strange, though cathartic, to be discussing all of this so openly. It does wonders for Mason's composure, for the redness in his eyes and tightness in his voice that slowly fades. "You— your parents weren't like us, though."

But all of that clarity and catharsis comes at a price when the truth rears its head once more. "You— weren't born with an ability either, Catherine. They— your parents— had volunteered you for a Company experiment, testing a formula designed in a lab to create synthetic Evolved abilities in ordinary humans…" Mason gently rubs one hand across his mouth, "The test was a success in you, though we had no idea when or what you would manifest. So… so many children were engineered this way."

There's recognition on her features, understanding of so much he tells her, evidence of her having knowledge prior to the meeting. It may well suggest she came to learn how much he would share, to put things on the table. Hypercognition. That fits with what Edward commented on. And he's not only an insurance company director. Though it does explain a good deal of his success. Then there's Peter and the explosion. Linderman. Angela Petrelli. Conspiracy. Her face hardens as she listens, the darker emotions being more evident, though she doesn't let loose of them.

Her way is to show as little as possible and let it all out privately as best she can. Right now they're in public, at the Tavern. He didn't say as much, she muses, but he seems to know the source of devastation was Peter rather than Gabriel Gray. Sylar. On this Cat doesn't speak. Then there's the last segment of revelation. It causes her to pale visibly, a bit more shock registering.

"A formula. I don't remember being given any such thing. How old was I at the time? I've seen the aftermath of someone attempting to create such a thing. It isn't pretty. I've blood on my hands, Father. The first time was a person who something like that was used on. He manifested and started causing destruction. I stopped him with the only tool I had. I couldn't tell if he was going to lay waste to the city or not. A decision had to be made. He wasn't the only one, though. Two of them. The one I shot, and another. Both melted. A few months later, I learned more about what had happened."

But now she seems closer to a breaking point, in considering the fullness of what she was just told. "The Forrests allowed this to be done, let me be used as a lab rat, and… I'm fortunate twice to have my ability and to not have become a puddle of goo."

There's a look of horror that dawns on Mason's face when Cat describes what happened that fateful day this fall, his face paling and eyes downturning to the coffee he was almost ready to finally take a sip of. Instead his stomach sinks deeper tan his heart, twists in knots and shows visible in the discomfort on his face. "God what has she been doing?"

Realizing what he said, Mason brushes a hand over his forehead, "I— You were only two years old when you were given the injection, far too young to really remember, maybe mistaken it for a childhood doctor's visit. The Company— it did these things to the notion of research, I— " he's hiding something, the hesitance and uncertainty all coming to a head as Mason looks down to the table. "I'm sorry, Catherine, for ever having subjected you to this. You— you are fortunate. So many of the initial test subjects suffered from severe biological rejection."

"The Company… That wasn't the only thing they were involved in. The blackouts, the riots, our operations against the Vanguard. The Company had a virus called the Shanti virus. It was in storage. Security was lax. One of their own stole it, and gave it to the Vanguard's leader, turned it into a weapon. We had a visitor who sent himself material from the future in which that plan worked. The virus changed. It merged with an experimental serum intended to pass on abilities, and wiped out ninety percent of the population. Our visitor told us where to act and when. We succeeded, we defeated the Vanguard and destroyed the viral packages at the cost of the power plant that was destroyed and the Verrazano-Narrows bridge. Three of us were captured and locked into prison for daring to stop a genocidal action."

"And now someone is messing around with the other half of that equation. The formula which melts people. What, Father," Cat asks, "has who been doing?"

Not everything Cat says seems to have been something Mason was prepared for, or entirely knew. The virus itself, the idea of time travel all is taken in with that veil of uncertainty and concentration he's worn most of the night, tempered now with regret and shame. Listening to Cat speak in such mechanical terms about truly miraculous things, Mason remarkably doesn't seem overwhelmed by it all. As he leans back in his chair, smoothing one hand over his face with a sigh, it' clear that while not overwhelming — it's a lot to swallow.

Any attempt at a question he was going to make is crushed by the question Cat asks, and Mason turn shis head away for a moment, eyes falling shut. "I— " silence comes, long and awkward, "I really shouldn't be talking about this, not— not right now. I— there's no proof, and I'm just jumping to conclusions." He doesn't sound too convinced of his own excuses.

Her mind is fast at work. Questions, the answers draw more questions to mind. He knows something. The formula. Is Pinehearst messing around with it? Are they tied to the melting people and the agent which merged with the virus? Is this why Edward wants Pinehearst to fail and the Company not fall? Is the future they came from one where this thing is being used to experiment on people and melting them? Did it go wrong in some other way? But if that's so, why did he not just say so directly? That would have worked.

He told her to come here, to meet with Father. He knew Father is involved in something. But… Tyler Case is wrong. The man sitting with her is not a psychopath. Could it be he thinks this is the point of change, to work on Father's conscience and make him turn away from whatever's afoot? That's a question she'll need to ask Edward directly. At present, she opts to not press for more about a formula currently under development. Another comes to mind.

"What happened to the version I was given, that worked, Father?"

"Destroyed, all of it." The words come out somewhat sputtering from Mason's lips, "There was a tragic lab accident at the research facility the Company was using, and the entire batch of the Formula was destroyed, many scientists lost their lives. The design of the formula was kept for a time, but…" Mason brushes a hand against his forehead again, "In the end, it was decided by the Founders that the Formula was too dangerous, and all instances of its method for creation were destroyed, save for one hard copy, which was safeguarded by Kaito Nakamura."

Staring down at the table, Mason's hand shakily picks up his coffee cup. "The other half, it— I don't fully understand, it was some sort of living energy, a bioelectrical charge, a part of one Evolved's power that could catalyze the formula. I— have no idea what happened to that part." But the tension in his brows indicates he has a sinking suspicion now.

"I'm sorry you were ever exposed to that, to the Formula, it— none of us were proud of what was done back then, it was a terrible mistake. Your family and the Winters were among those lost to the lab's destruction, I— I lost many good friends back then."

The name strikes a chord in her mind. Edward said to ask Father about Adam Monroe and Ethan going after Hiro. Kaito Nakamura. It makes more sense now. Hiro's father is one of the Company founders? Fuck. Cat doesn't need to ask the question anymore. It's been answered. "Father," she begins, speaking calmly, "I believe in you. Thank you for telling me all you have. I want to hear it all, learn everything. There should be no more secrets between us."

"No— " Mason begins to stutter outm "No you're right, there shouldn't be any, I— " clearing his throat, he reaches down to his suit jacket and retrieves a white business card from within, sliding it across the table. There, on the card, is a doubled version of the very symbol Peter etched into Cat's window so many months ago, the symbol that sat in the shadow of Adam Monroe. The Card reads, Pinehearst Company - 26877 Century Drive, Fort Lee, NJ.

"I have a feeling Arthur would be able to explain all of this so much better to you," Mason's eyes downcast into his cup of coffee, and he just sets it back down on the table, no appetite even for that any longer. "He wants to meet with all of you — Phoenix. He says he's willing to fund and finance your organization, help you take the fight to the Company, to the Government, and that he has a plan to bring all of this — every dark and dirty secret the Company has — to light."

Perhaps there, in that ideal, Mason could find redemption for the things he's done with his life. "Your mother should be back from California in a few days, and I think — I know — it would be good for you to go out there, good for everyone."

She is possibly forming her own plans at the same time. He seems to have remorse over things he's done, and the evidence is that Pinehearst is working with the formula, intending to kill Hiro and Kaito over it. Will that be a good thing, or a bad thing? Can the formula be recreated without friends dying over it? Can it be taken while Pinehearst itself fails? She's still inclined to tear down both Pinehearst and the Company.

But now she needs to somehow extricate her father from it first. There are so many revelations, so much to process. The next bout of alone time she has will be intense, when she lets out the anger, the pain, the pure shock, once she no longer has to think on her feet. And how much, Cat wonders, can her father already perceive? She doesn't take the business card, her eyes simply look at it long enough to see the info there.

"I don't need to take the card, Father," she tells him with a ghost of a smile. "I saw it, and that's the same as having a copy. I'll talk to the others. But we should stay in touch. Talk frequently. There's still so much story to share, I can see it, and your heart wants you to tell me all of it."

"Are you going to be in trouble, or danger, for telling me any of this, Father?"

There's a faint smile as he takes the card back, a smile of pride, in some misshapen form. "No… No I won't get in any trouble," he says in a hushed, quiet tone of voice. There's no explanation of why he won't get in trouble, just that weak smile hiding the pain he tries to keep from his daughter. "I— I should go, Catherine. I— there's so much I have to do, but," he waves one hand dismissively, "I'll cover the tab for your meal… " his eyes close partway, "one of us should enjoy something to eat today."

Abruptly rising up from his seat, Mason brushes his hair back with one hand, fingers still fumbling with that card he'd taken, until he slides it into the pocket of his jacket. Swallowing tensely, he watches Cat, waiting to see if it would be this easy, if she'd let him go — for now.

She doesn't stop him from leaving, she accepts his word on needing to go. She too has a lot to do. Cat also stands, her eyes resting on him and speaking in a hushed voice. More hushed than the tones she's used throughout the meeting to keep such topics from being overheard as they talked. "Take care, Father," she offers. "I'll call soon and have you to my home, so I can show you what I'm working to create in Greenwich Village and we can share more. I still have things to tell you, keeping up my end."

After he's gone, she will retake her seat and partake of the lunch, eating slowly while she begins to work through all the shocks. Once she's home, there will be Krav Maga, the shooting of arrows, and the drinking of much stout.

And after that maybe a trip to the Old Dispensary for firearms use.

Mason's departure is a quiet, shaky one, with that faint smile still present on his face despite all of the baggage weighing him down. No baggage more so pressing than the one in the pocket of his suit jacket, the one that he attends to the moment that he has set foot outside of the Tavern on the Green. There, flipping his cell phone open, Mason dials in a number from memory, one unfamiliar to him unlike so many others he's been handed lately.

"It's done." His voice is a quavering thing, still tense with the emotion of that conversation, "She— she came to me just like you said she would, I told her everything, gave her the card." There's a pause, and Mason hangs his head in a slowly bobbing nod to himself. "No— I don't think she suspects anything."

Another nod comes, and Mason closes his eyes. "Now, Edward, I need you to uphold your end of the bargain."

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