Hi, I Would Like To Be A Terrorist


ling_icon.gif lynette2_icon.gif melissa_icon.gif

Scene Title Hi, I Would Like To Be A Terrorist
Synopsis Lynette drops in on a couple Messiah members to get a better rundown on the organization.
Date September 02, 2010

Little Green House

This is a medium-sized two-story home, and one that, in its better days, was no doubt a very warm and welcoming home. There has been some work done to restore it to those days. The walls are all freshly painted, a pale blue-gray color, though the floors are scratched up and badly need resanding. More, every inch of the house has been cleaned, so that windows sparkle and metal gleams.

The structure of the home is still nice. There are large bay windows which let in plenty of light, and several of those windows are really French doors that lead out onto the back patio, or onto a small square balcony on the second floor. Even the attic has a few windows which keep that space from looking dingy or even creepy. The basement, however, has no such windows.

The first floor consists of a foyer, large kitchen, living room with a fireplace, bathroom and what must be a sort of laundry room. The second floor has four bedrooms and two bathrooms, one off of the main bedroom. These rooms are all rather decent sized, though only two of the bedrooms show signs of being lived in.

They all have the standard furniture; a couch and some oversized chairs set in front of an entertainment center in the living room, a table and chairs in the kitchen, beds and dressers in the bedrooms. For now it still looks a little bare, with few real traces of the occupants. Other than a set of shelves that is filled with a large variety of shotglasses.

It's evening, the city starting to close down due to curfew. Even on Staten Island things are winding down, despite all the criminal types who aren't exactly concerned with such things as curfews. The lights are on in the little green house in the northern part of the island, however, at least one of its occupants up and moving around.

The sight is one familiar to Ling, with Melissa curled up on the couch in a pair of black pajama type pants and a blank tank top, her feet bare, toes electric blue. A bowl of popcorn sits in her lap while the sounds of the movie playing flow over her. It's a comedy, something she's stuck to almost exclusively since the 'incident' the week before. On the floor directly in front of the couch is Jerry, the German Shepherd fast asleep.

Lynette knows only one way to really deal with pain. And that is to pick a vice (or several, hell) and run with it until it doesn't hurt anymore. And for her… she meant to go to a party tonight, to drown her own in social graces and liquor. However. Things change.

Although, not everything, since there's the neck of an unopened bottle in her rather oversized purse. That's not for her pain, though.

She makes her way to the little house, dressed in petal pushers and a floral-printed top, her short hair held back with a matching blue headband… It's downright cute, is what it is. And that's who approaches Melissa's place, a deliberate knock announcing her presence there.

The sound of the door from the patio opening is likely enough to stir Jerry, if the knock on teh front door doesn't. Ling's arrival manages to almost precisely coincide with Lynette's knocking, and besides the sound of that door closing, there is little else to announce her presence, Ling sliding into the room rather quietly. Gaze given over to the TV briefly, Ling shakes her head at Melissa.

"I'm surprised you're still up," the Chinese woman remarks, pulling a red scarf from around her neck. "And what movie is it this time?" She asks mostly out of idle curiosity, but every now and then Melissa manages to put something on that even Ling can find pleasure in watching.

People at both doors? It has Melissa frowning a little and pausing the movie, the popcorn set on the coffee table. For Ling, there is something new in the front room. An orchid on a new table by the window. "Having problems sleeping lately," she tells Ling with a shrug, rising to her feet. "And it's Hot Fuzz. Police comedy."

She moves to the door opening it, and her brow furrows a little. She knows that face. It takes a moment, but then her expression clears. "You're the chick from the Institute attack." Very subtle, Mel.

There's a blink for that greeting, but Lynette lets out a sigh after a moment. "I do hope I can earn a better pseudonym. I was told to come here. Peter said dropping his name would get me in the door. As opposed to thrown out of it, I suppose. Are you Melissa?"

Her hands tighten on the straps of her bag, like she might be ready to bolt if this ends up going sour. Paranoid.

"Police comedy?" Ling replies sceptically, letting her hair back down with a sigh. "I find that a little hard to believe. Most police movies are overwrought action movies," she continues, setting a hair tie and the scarf down on the edge of the sofa. She hadn't heard the knock, but Melissa getting up to get the door has Ling looking defensive all of a sudden. The mention of the Institute chick lessens her demeanour, and when she actually sees the woman is one of the people she saw at the triage center, she relaxes visibly. The mention of Peter certainly doesn't hurt. She steps towards the door, stepping just into view, but remaining silent otherwise.

Another frown. "He did, did he?" Melissa mutters softly, but she steps back, opening the door further so Lynette can come in. "Yeah, I'm Melissa. And why did Peter send you to me?" A pause. "And if you want a better pseudonym, a name to use would help." Glancing over her shoulder at Ling, she shrugs lightly. "It's a police comedy. There's some action, but it's all funny action. We'll watch it start to finish soon. You'll like it." But then, she's made that promise with most of the movies she's nagged Ling into watching.

"Lynette. Sorry," the woman says with a sort of embarrassed chuckle. "I'm a little outside of my element… at the moment." Hi, I would like to be a terrorist. Yep, it's pretty out there.

She does glance to Ling, as if uncertain for a moment, but she looks back to Melissa. Instead of answering, exactly, the woman reaches into her giant purse, where her fingers pull out a length of familiar red cloth. Lynette looks at the scarf for a long moment, and then up to Melissa, assuming that'll serve as the reason she's here.

The sight of the red cloth has Ling furrowing her brow. That sends the message clear enough, considering she just took her piece of red cloth off. "I see," she remarks simply, turning and making her way back into the TV room. "I believe you may have gained another boarder, Melissa."

The scarf is looked at for a moment before Melissa nods and motions for Lynette to come inside. "Well, you're in good company. That's Ling, feel free to talk…well…freely in front of her. She's got her own scarf." A glance to Ling, then Mel is looking back to Lynette. "Are you here because you need a place to stay?" she asks curiously, not seeming to be at all put out at the idea.

"Actually… that's a little up in the air at the moment," Lynette says as she steps into the house, "For now, I have a place. It may change, it may not. Things… have to be- It's complicated." She slides that scarf back into its place before she looks back to Melissa. "He said… well, for one he said you were 'good people' and that I could possibly get a more… thorough introduction to this… organization." This time, when her hand pulls something out of her purse (a la Mary Poppins), it's a bottle of very nice Russian vodka. This she hands to Melissa, her other hand touching her arm in such a way that says this part isn't about Messiah. It's just a brief show of sympathy, and then the woman looks back over to Ling again. "Ling. Lovely to meet you."

"We've met," Ling replies, turning back around as she removes her thin gloves from her hands. "At the triage, briefly. I believe you left after some moronic water manipulator decided to splash me." She conveniently leaves out the part where that prompted her to draw a knife on said hydrokinetic. 'It is nice to meet in a more… proper manner. The vodka earns a wary eye from the Chinese woman. "I should not be surprised that someone involved in that raid has come to us, from what have heard." Apparently, Ling got lucky, only having to deal with an Ice Monster.

The vodka is taken, though Melissa blinks at it for a moment. Then her lips twitch and she shakes her head before shutting the door. "Do I wanna know why you brought me an offering of vodka?" She motions for Lynette to follow and moves over to the couch, plopping back down and setting the bottle on the coffee table.

Mention of the triage center, and Lynette being seen there has Melissa muttering softly, but not saying anything the others can hear. There is a mild look of embarrassment though before she gives herself a shake. "A more thorough intro huh? Well, what did he tell you about it? So we don't just repeat what he said?"

"Perhaps not," Lynette says as far as explaining the vodka. And she doesn't! Instead, she looks over at Ling and just looks for a moment. "Oh. You were there talking to Richard, weren't you? I'm sorry, those few days are really… fuzzy." To put it mildly. "I wouldn't really say I was involved with the raid, unless being carted out while I was unconscious counts."

She takes it upon herself to sit on the couch as well, setting her bag down at her feet. "He gave me the sales pitch. He mentioned revenge, and sacrifice and danger and doing what's right. He explained about the phones and how the communication is secure. Oh and he did mention leveling buildings." She delivers it all very nonchalantly, it's difficult to tell that however he pitched it to her, she's very serious about her involvement. But then, she's here, so that might be enough proof.

"Yes. Talking to Richard." While the other two take to the couch, Ling is moving into the kitchen. Despite just being at a party, she's rather hungry. And could use a drink herself, though Melissa's recent favouring of straight alcohol is far from Ling's preference. "He told you more than he told me," Ling states flatly as she draws a glass out from the cabinet. "Not that I needed to know much. I watch the news, which is idea enough." To Ling, what you see on the news isn't really that different from what they actually do, despite how much some might argue otherwise. "It does sound as though he gave you the… quick, concise version."

Melissa nods a little as Lynette explains, but when Ling calls that the concise version, she lets out a soft snort. "Better than the version I got at first. I just got, the government is bad, we're going to do something about it, in a whole lot more words." She shrugs and stretches her legs out after reclaiming her bowl of popcorn.

"That is the gist of things, though. But to get a little more in depth…The phones are dealt with by a techno wiz named Rebel. They'll only call out to other members of the organization, and they are secure, so you can pretty much speak freely over them, if you need to. And while leveling buildings is part of the gig, it's not just random buildings." She gives Lynette a pointed look. "Like the hospital you were kept in. That was leveled, and I'm sure you can agree that there was very much a purpose to it."

"Honestly, I think he… was either trying to talk me out of it, or making sure I was really… right for it, I suppose." Lynette sits up some, taking in Melissa's explanation with a simple nod. "Yes, I got the impression that it isn't just random violence. Which is good. Because if I can get a little payback on those bastards-" Anger flares for a moment. Just a little! But, the women swallows that moment and lifts her chin some. She's cool. "Anyway. How does it work. He said missions came over the phone and we could come or not come as we liked, but… I don't know. Are there club meetings?"

"That sounds about what Peter told me as well," Ling remarks as her glass is filled with water, two others drawn out in case the others would like one. Stepping back into the living room, one is offered down to both, Ling still standing, looming up overhead. "Club meetings?" Ling says with a bit of a haughty laugh and a shake of her head. "You make it sound as if we are children gathering on a playground." The shaking subsides after a moment, Ling taking a sip of her drink. "There are meetings though. There is certainly a… plan behind all of it, yes. As for the missions…" A glance over to Melissa, and then to the stairs. "I am going to change. I'll leave Melissa to explain teh details."

"See ya, Ling," Melissa calls as Ling heads stairwards, and she see-saws a hand at Lynette's question. "Wouldn't call them club meetings, but yeah, we do meet from time to time, when there's a big issue at hand. And I can completely understand your desire for revenge," she says, her own hatred, not of the Institute, but of Frontline, burning in her eyes for a moment.

"Anyway. Yes, there are missions, usually with a small group of people. Two to six, generally, though there are larger missions sometimes, like with the hospital. Sometimes they come over the phone, sometimes it's worked out at one of the meetings." Like Mel volunteered for the Biodynamics mission, and that thought does occur to her, bringing sorrow into her voice and onto her face.

"The sort of missions vary. Sometimes it's a rescue mission, sometimes intel gathering, sometimes it's blowing up a target, in which case the explosives experts will have people with to keep them safe. And we're usually pretty good about putting people where they can do the most good. Like putting someone as a lookout who has an ability that lets them watch an area unseen." A pause, then Mel asks, "What's your ability, by the way?"

"I don't mean to be flippant," Lynette says, as much as her actions seem to be the opposite, "It just makes everything… seem normal." She gives Ling a nod for a goodbye and brings a hand up to rub her face before she looks over at Melissa again. "Electrokinesis. I can generate or absorb. And control it. So. I hope to be of some use, here and there. I'm… very tired of sitting on the bench. I'm tired… of them being able to just victimize people." Making it a broader, less personal statement there.

Melissa shakes her head. "No, you don't sound flippant. It's not an easy thing, to know that you can want to do this sort of thing. Or that you need to. Believe me, I know. I was Ferry before I went this route and it's…a big change. Going from passive protecting and hiding to actively seeking out the enemy to eliminate it."

A small nod and an appreciative smile. "Electrokinesis huh? Handy. That mean that you're immune to shocks? Like could be struck by lightning and just be charged up, so to speak? And I apologize for the questions, but I like knowing about the people who'll be getting my back, you know?"

"Yes, exactly. What the Ferry does is important and I continue to support it, but when push came to shove, it didn't…" save me. Lynette doesn't finish the sentence, though, she just shakes her head to dismiss it. "I… actually, yes, I probably could catch a lightning strike. I'm not usually hurt by electricity unless there's water around. I charge up and the rest just sort of passes through. Conduit, I suppose." She's become far more intimate with her limits, because of that hospital. "Please, as whatever you need. I realize having a new face thrown at you is not always the most comfortable situation."

That brings a faint smile to Melissa's face. "True enough. And this is the first time Peter's sent anyone to me like this, so it's sort of a new experience for me. But I don't mind. If I can help, then I'll glady do it." The smile fades as she gets back to business. "That's a handy ability you have there. When you say you can generate it, does that mean that you shock a person by touch, or could you throw a bolt of lightning, so to speak? Either way is handy, but having a ranged ability can be very useful too."

Absently she offers the bowl of popcorn to Lynette, though she's eaten little of it herself. "You're right, the Ferry's work is important. I was with them for a few years, and ran a safehouse before I quit a few months ago. I don't agree with some of their methods, but overall, they do help a lot of people. Hell, I went to the memorial on Saturday because I believe that." Of course she also punched one of them, but no need to get into that.

"Anyway, continue with your questions. I'll answer 'em as best I can. Sure you have a bunch of them. I know I did. Oh, and this house? Pretty much a safehouse for us. Got three people living with me right now, including Ling, and two are Messiah, one is Ferry, though I don't see the guys too much lately."

"He said… he thought we'd get along," Lynette recalls with a crooked smile. She doesn't seem to think he got it wrong, either. "But thank you. And the same goes for me. I'm in this, so if there's anything I can help with… I'm around." When the discussion goes back to her ability, she nods her head, "I can do either. Touch or ranged. I'm not a bad shot with a bolt here and there, I've discovered."

She reaches absentmindedly for the popcorn when that bowl is offered out, taking a small handful for herself. "I didn't stay. At the memorial. But. Um. Questions. It's hard to figure out where to start, exactly." She thinks on it for a moment, munching a few pieces before she speaks again. "Peter, is he in charge or is he just the salesman? Are there… ranks or something like that? And is there somewhere… to train? I'm afraid I need to brush up on my brawling."

Melissa laughs and nods. "Yeah, you're not the only one. And there is a place you can train, not too far from here. I've been pondering who to ask to train me for that matter. Or who I could con into being a sparring partner to just practice. If that is all you really need, you're more than welcome to join me. The grass out back is very soft when you land on your ass."

Another handful of popcorn, then she nods again. "Peter's the leader. There aren't really ranks per se, but there are a few people who have very specific duties. Like Rebel takes care of our communications and all that technical stuff, while a guy named Rupert handles figuring out the large scale tactics. Or a good chunk of it anyway. Like what targets to hit. We've got a couple of medic types, including Peter himself, since he's a paramedic and all."

A pause, then she gives a crooked grin. "I'm sort of the den mother, I guess. Since I take in people and act as a sounding board for people. Figuring out issues or whatever. I'm normally very good with people. Oh, and my ability is pain manipulation by the way."

"Sparring would definitely be on the menu. I haven't had to use my fists in a long time. But offensive use of powers, too. I… don't want them- or anyone, frankly- to be able to take me again. Not without a more impressive fight at least." Lynette frowns at that memory, and this time it doesn't seem as easy for the woman to shake it off.

"Medics, good to know there's some of those around. Considering. And a den mother, too. Lord knows people always need something like that. I imagine more so when your job is as dangerous as all this." At the mention of her ability, though, Lynette whistles. "Goodness. I imagine that's terribly useful."

"It comes in handy from time to time," Melissa says with another crooked smile. "And yeah, I can get wanting to practice with your ability. I'd suggest not doing that at the place I mentioned before though. It's mostly enclosed, though there is the railyard, which would probably work. My backyard is available to you too."

She nods. "Medics are good, and I think one of our people was a doctor of some sort. He patched me once, and did a good job of it. I know a little first aid, could dig out a bullet if necessary, but I let others deal with it when I can. Since they really know what they're doing. But I'm useful to have around then anyway. Better than morphine."

A pause, then Mel tilts her head. "But you saw that firsthand. When Peter was healing the loudmouth jackass at the triage center."

"Railyard, fascinating. I'll poke around and see where would be a good place. I would hate to leave your yard charred all over." Lynette nods as Melissa goes on, and offers, "I'm always open to learning, too, if there's ever need for another medic around. Or… whatever. I'm terribly lacking in terrorist skills." She chuckles a little, until those last words make her blink again. "Oh, that's right. I'm sorry, like I was saying… things are really fuzzy. Some faces stuck, some didn't. I was really a mess there for a bit." The implication being that now she's not a mess. Which may be wishful thinking on her part.

Melissa shrugs a little. "You'd just gotten out of there. It's understandable that some things didn't stick as well as others. I'd be shocked if it was otherwise. If you want to learn some medical skills, in Messiah I'd say talk to Sasha, if you can. Peter could help, but that boy is busy as hell. I'd be shocked if he got four hours of sleep a night." And it seems to bother her a good bit.

"What'd you mean earlier, when you said you might not have a place? You said it was complicated but then, this whole deal is complicated."

"I noticed that. He looked exhausted when I saw him. Men can get so stubborn. Thickheaded and headstrong. You can't push against them when they get that way. You've got to work around them." Lynette takes a mental note of the name Sasha. She'll looks into it later. The subject of her living arrangements grabs her attention much more thoroughly.

"Ah. I operate a safehouse. My name is all over it. The Institute knew to look for me there. God knows how much of a risk it is, my even being there. I have no idea. I'll be chatting with the council about it, I suppose. They won't leave me with no place to go, but… I'm not sure if I'll be there doing what I've been doing."

Melissa smiles wryly. "He definitely is. He works twelve hour shifts at his job, then deals with the running of Messiah. And god knows what else he's doing on the side that I don't know about."

Brows lift and Melissa nods. "Yeah…safehouses aren't as safe as we'd like. I quit not long after the one I ran was raided, because Scott decided to let the Department of Evolved Affairs know about it. Without giving me the head's up." She shakes her head, clearly still irked about it. "And yeah, that does sound complicated. If you do need someplace to stay, whether a few nights or more indefinitely, I've got a room in the attic left. It doesn't have much in the way of furnishings, but it's got a bed and this place is pretty safe. I mean, three Messiah members and a guard dog. What more do you need, right?"

"Thanks. I… really appreciate it. I might take you up on it for tonight, in any case. I don't much relish the thought of picking my way over to the safehouses here. If that's alright." Lynette grabs some more popcorn, taking a sullen moment to munch before she looks over at Melissa again. "Peter thinks I should lay low. Like low. Since everybody and their mother knows who I am and what I can do." She exaggerates, but still. "I'm not sure what to do, frankly."

"That's perfectly fine. You'd probably get hassled anyway, given that it's night and Staten Island. The sheets and everything are clean, so whenever you're ready to pass out I'll show you where everything is," Melissa says with a smile, not seeming at all put out. "Don't discount laying low either. It does help. What do you mean about not being sure what to do. Regarding what? The safehouse? Messiah? Your life in general?"

"I suppose I mean about… me and the safehouse. I know I don't want to bring… anything down on them there. But I don't know how well I'd do at laying low. I mean, how will I get my hands on Prada's winter line." She's not entirely serious there. It's more of a symbol of the lifestyle she'd be stepping away from. "Or else… I don't know. New papers, new identity. But that doesn't change that people know what I look like. This is all… very foreign. I mean, the threat always hung overhead, but it was a distant thing. You know what I mean?"

There's a sympathetic smile to go with Melissa's nod. "Yeah, I know what you mean. It was like that for me too." Once, anyway. Before Moab. "New identities can be gotten without too much trouble. Hell, I have three including my real identity. As for laying low…Mmm…What would a normal day consist of for you? Not counting little things like showering, eating breakfast, doing your makeup. But like, things where you interact with people?"

"Mostly it's work. Since I got back, I've had to do a lot of reorganizing and trying to meet the people in my building. Paying bills. Shopping. Food, supplies, things for the safehouse. The paperwork is a nice pile on my desk." And Lynette has been throwing herself into that work. "And then Ferry meetings and… the whole puzzle thing." She says that like it's supposed to mean something.

"Work? You mean…" Melissa trails off as the word 'puzzle' sinks in. Her brows lower and she looks intently at Lynette. "What puzzle thing?"

"Well, it's not just a safehouse, it's a legitimate apartment building with legitimate renters, too. I see to all the administration that needs doing." Lynette tilts her head a bit at that last question, though. "Someone's sent these puzzle pieces out in the mail. One side has part of the picture, the other has a word on it. Just some word. We've been trying to figure out what it's all about."

"Pieces? Have you gotten several, or do you just know several people who have gotten them? Because I got one too and I haven't been able to make head or tails of it," Melissa admits. "And I don't much like it."

"I got one and my co-super got one as well. We've sent word out to see if others got any, either, but we're waiting on some feedback there. I had a postcog take a look… it doesn't seem to be threatening, more like someone who's trying to get their message out. A man working by oil lamp, I believe is what she saw." Lynette spreads her hands there, though, "We haven't made much more progress than that, but we're trying."

"A man?" Melissa considers for a moment. "Don't suppose this postcog is a decent artist, is she? A sketch could come in handy. Maybe someone would recognize the guy. Though I guess if he was working by oil lamp the image wouldn't be the greatest," she murmurs thoughtfully. "Who's your co-super, by the way?"

"She is, actually. But I'm not sure she got a good look at his face. I'll ask her, though and see what she can do there. But unfortunately, she did say it was very dark." Lynette smiles a bit at the end there, though, "His name's Toby. Toby Benton-Ward."

Melissa runs through her mental address book before shaking her head. "Don't think I know him. But will you let me know if you find anything out? And what'd your piece say? Mine said 'rule'." Then she seems to remember that there were other topics at hand, more important than puzzle pieces. "Anyway, laying low…Running an apartment building doesn't seem too high profile, but since it's actually a safehouse…If this Toby is Ferry? I'd let him do a bit more of the work and all the facetime if you can manage it."

"Absolutely. I'm hoping we'll actually get some pieces that go together so we can build this thing. My piece said 'better'. I'm not sure what this guy's message is, but he seems to want all our minds on figuring it out." Lynette nods to the latter, though, "I'll heap the public stuff on him. I'll probably have to end up putting the building in his name. Which is fine. We'll see how it plays out over the next week or so. Hopefully I'll have a better handle on things by then."

"Better and rule? Weird. But yeah, keep me updated please." Melissa sets the bowl aside and nods, rising to her feet and stretching. "Yeah, couldn't hurt. But for now…it's late, and sounds like you've had a busy day. Lemme show you that lovely attic room with a view of the harbor and not much else."

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