It Is Time


cardinal_icon.gif delia_icon.gif hiro_icon.gif jaiden_icon.gif joseph_icon.gif luther_icon.gif

magnes_icon.gif monica_icon.gif peyton2_icon.gif quinn_icon.gif sable_icon.gif ygraine_icon.gif

Scene Title It Is Time
Synopsis A final meeting amongst a web of time has discussion about how to end the time battles… and what we're willing, and not willing, to risk to do so.
Date November 4, 2010

Jittetsu Arms

The sun's dropped low enough that the air is now cool, and there is nothing about Jittetsu Arms that is particiularly warm and inviting, although the opened doors that lead through the front room, through to the much larger back room, is silent invitation in its own right. An abandoned store beyond it's front door, with everyone not nailed down looted long ago, it's not here that the meeting is to take place. If open doors weren't enough of an indication, then the sound of argument might be night.

"…how do you know she ain't dead?"

Joseph doesn't get angry very often. Even now, his voice lacks volume and emphasis, quietly cutting and a little raw. It does, however, manage to fill the cavernous back room, echo a little off the sides. "And if not, what if they got her for themselves?" He stands off to the side, a little out of the way, regarding Hiro's turned back as the besworded Japanese man busies himself with tending to his string map. It's changed, since the very, very first meeting. Not in fundamental ways, of course — it still webs out between the distanced walls, trying to cover more than a century of twisted time with brown yarn, red wool, fisherman's wire. Newspaper clippings, photographs, bits and pieces mark trajectories and intersections.

He'd concluded the meeting with a single white paper crane hanging off such a corner. Now, there are many identical white cranes, marking the corners of history remade and unmade. White cranes, much like everyone who would be arriving here tonight will receive.

It is time.

Even Joseph has one, although his has been worried into crumpled white paper. "She trusted you," he finally points out, but leaves it be when Hiro only adjusts the sit of the final white paper crane.

Delia had arrived only a few minutes before the argument began, admittedly, she didn't notice that Kaylee was missing in action again. Sure she hadn't been around, but that didn't seem too out of the ordinary for the telepath, at least in the dream walker's perspective.

Dressed in her second hand shearling coat, she holds her own little crane inside of her pocket. The invitation came when Jaiden had stayed the night and neither were quite sure who it belonged to, so they both decided to come. She just got here a little early, a hazzard when you're walking to and from places and grossly overestimate the length of time it takes to make the jaunt.

"Uhm… " She was going to say something to try to ease the tension in the room, but she's coming up blank. "Sorry, I was just uhm… does anyone want a uhm.." Digging in her pocket, she comes up with a packet of sanka. "Coffee? I have Sanka?"

Acutely aware that she might, by having taken a less-than-standard route to the derelict shop, possibly be intruding unexpectedly, Ygraine pauses a few yards inside that open front door. Crouched on the ceiling of the front room, she's a black-clad figure swathed in deep shadow, attire and movements alike clearly seeking anonymity.

Still, with that familiar-sounding voice seeming to confirm that she is probably in the right place, she reaches forward to rest her gloved hands on the ceiling before kicking her feet down, dropping with a (moderately) quiet thud to the floor. From there, she walks up the corridor towards the noise… letting the sound of her footsteps announce her presence before she emerges into the room. Seeing a few familiar people and an apparent lack of imminent danger, she reaches up to remove the black-visored helmet concealing her features, tucking the bulky object under one arm.

It's a rather more impressive map than the relatively small one that's constructed in the basement of the Redbird Security building, that's for certain, and as the Endgame contingent arrives in the abandoned store it draws the attention of their leader immediately.

"Christ, and me without a camera," Cardinal mutters under his breath as he pauses just within the door, hand raising a little to tug the shades down slightly to look over the tangle of threads and strings and loops of yarn. After a few long moments, he shakes his head tightly to dismiss the thought about it. He has other things to take care of tonight. Striding ahead of the others, he heads for the argument between Joseph and Hiro, adding yet another argument tot he mix. "Nakamura! Where the hell did you send Francois? It's been weeks."

The cold wet rain outside reminds Peyton a touch of her trip to the past, to the muddy and wet Belgium countryside, but only because of what this meeting is about. This time she actually received a crane — Rhys didn't steal it and exchange it for his brand of manipulation and lies, no matter how well intended — and she touches it in the pocket of her red trenchcoat. Her eyes widen at the string map that rivals Cardinal's, and glances at Monica, then follows their leader toward Joseph and Hiro.

"We know you took him," she says softly, perhaps a little less accusatory in tone, though there is a stiffness in her posture as she studies the Japanese man. A moment later, she looks to Joseph, her eyes softening for him as she offers a slight and sympathetic smile. "I can't find either of them."

Monica is in all black, too, although her outfit looks a little… dusty. She's also sporting a few scraps and such, from her own recent jaunt in the past. It's a good thing there's someone with a sense of timing orchestrating matters in all this.

Walking in on an argument and starting another is certainly one way to get the ball rolling on a meeting, but Monica doesn't seem to share the upset of her peers. Call it faith. "Hey Hiro," she greets with a crooked smile, "are there snacks?"

Her opener is, apparently, humor.

It's honestly something of a wonder that Sable was able to find her way here. She wasn't totally, like, sober when she got the latest crane, and while winding through ruined streets and clambering over the occasional spill of cracked and blackened blocks have boosted her metabolism temporarily, she's still feeling a little fuzzy headed. Still, she has faith she'll get there in time. It's the effort, after all, that counts with shit like this. At least that's her theory.

Sable has a lot of theories, most of them involving her own centrality in this whole time-rescue palaver, plus the centrality of her near and dear. The integration of some others is, she supposes, a matter of necessity, but she's still pretty dedicated to the idea that this has all been for her personal benefit.

Imagine her surprise, then, when she finds all these other jokers spilling into the same defunct shop she's been summoned to. Brows furrow over mildly bloodshot yellow eyes as she assesses the other arrivals, assessing degrees of familiarity and thus, in her mind, their possible importance to the grand temporal project the center of which is her own person. Not quite paranoiac enough to account for everyone all at once, she mills at the fringe mostly, as people talk about things that she doesn't think she'd follow even if she was sober as a judge.

Delia is spotted, and Sable deems her the best and easiest person to gravitate towards. "Hey," she says, voice kept low, a bit husky, "didn't know y'all were part 'f this. Figure, though, makes some sorta sense." She eyes the packet of coffee, and gives a crooked smile. "Shoulda let me known, hon. I'd've brought my coffee pot."

Hiro tenses at this new argument. Or old argument. Lowering his hands from where paper clip holds paper crane, his shoulders are slack before he turns to face Cardinal and Peyton both, flicking a glance beyond them towards new arrivals. What would be easier to address, here? Pointing past Joseph, then, towards a low table of handcrafted wood, where a silver platter holds de-crusted cucumber sandwiches, put there by an exceptionally well intentioned tiny postcognitive. "Yes," he tells Monica.

Humour or not— there are snacks.

"Elisabeth Harrison and Eileen Spurling has asked me the same," he finally says to Cardinal and Peyton. "I don't know where Francois Allegre is. I thought there was a chance that I might have taken him in a near future, as I have the others, but we are coming to the end of this battle, and I have not." He moves between the hanging strings of time, ducking under one so as to better get near the centre, making sure his sword hilt doesn't catch.

Joseph is moving towards where Ygraine has entered, although does remark, "You're just losin' people all over the time stream, now."

"He is not why I have called this meeting," the time traveler adds, a glance to the precognitive, then back to the wider group.

Smiling at Sable, Delia holds up the packet of instant coffee and shrugs. "I don't think it needs a whole pot, maybe just one cup of hot water…" Why she has a packet of instant coffee in her pocket, well you just never know when you might need a cup of joe. Kaylee probably needs one right now but not Sanka brand.

Popping it back into her pocket, she reaches to the crucifix hanging from the thin chain around her nack and rub her thumb against it. Leaning a little toward her spikey haired friend, she discreetly points toward Peyton and whispers, "She gave me an autograph once… I lost it though… think she'd give me another one?"

The redhead also met her dog twice and her dog walker once. Someone's turning into a great celebutante stalker.

Her eyes sweep over the rest of the people in the room and then finally toward the silver platter, "Oh hey, there's sandwiches…" Sort of. "You want one? I uhm.." her blue eyes flit toward Hiro, Joseph, and then Cardinal before she passes an uneasy smile to Sable. "I'm going to get a few… because … Yeah… fighting."

Stripping a wet and dusty glove off one hand, Ygraine stuffs it into one of the many pockets of her biker's jacket - though her attention is mostly split between Hiro and Joseph. To the latter, she offers a warm smile, taking a step forward to meet him part-way. Though her hair colour has changed rather radically since their last meeting, she seems to trust in the pastor's recognition of her, murmuring no more than a simple "Hi there", by way of greeting - though her expression suggests that she's very happy indeed to find him here, and she offers her now-bare hand to him to shake.

"You did take him," Cardinal states rather flatly, giving the time traveller a rather suspicious look through his shades, both arms folding across his chest in a manner that presses the edges of his flight jacket in against his body, "We saw you… some iteration of you, anyway." If you want to be technical, it was Peyton who saw him, but he's trying to put up a show of solidarity here.

Still, there's the distinct possibility that this Hiro doesn't know what happened yet. There's more than one version of him, after all.

He shakes his head slowly from side to side, moving to walk along over towards the string web rather than the platter of snacks. A sidelong glance to Peyton, and he asks quietly, "Your phone has that picture function, right?"

Dark brows rise beneath dark bangs and Peyton shakes her head. "What do you mean, you thought you might have taken — you don't know where you took him?" How is that possible? But Cardinal is speaking and explaining in his vague way, and Peyton closes her mouth, scowling slightly, arms wrapping around herself a little unhappily. "Is Rhys here? I still have to kick his ass," she mutters slightly.

To Cardinal, she looks up and nods, slipping it from her pocket and handing him the iPhone. Like the Luddite will have a clue what to do with it. When he just looks at her, she smirks and touches the screen, sliding to the proper app and lifts the camera to snap away — unless someone stops her.

Monica blinks, not having expected food, but the presence of it makes her smile and move over that way to snag a few. She even brings some back for Peyton and Cardinal. "I don't know if he is, but I don't think Hiro is responsible for these," she notes, of the snacks. Monica does not try to take any pictures, after all, last time she tried to, there was a woman waiting for her on a rooftop to tell her it was a no no.

All decked out in black, it takes a couple eye sweeps for Sable to recognize Ygraine, and a double take is necessary to really solidify the impression. The diminutive musician lifts a half-eaten sandwich in a greeting that may or may not be seen, causing a slice of cucumber to slide free and fall onto her shoe. Whoops. She shakes the slice free and glances quickly at Delia. She didn't see that, did she?

Rushing into Jittetsu Arms wearing all black, including gloves, along with a backpack that appears to have a sword sticking out of one side, Magnes seems to think they're going on a Deadpool-like mission, and has come prepared for such. "Sorry I'm late!" he says as the little paper crane follows near his right, like a little Navi. "I'm completely ready!" He's marching his way over to Sable, smiling.

"Not this… iteration," Hiro allows, the word only minorly stilted, coming from him. He continues his journey along the web, coming to an intersection of many strings winding around one. Rather than a photograph or a news clipping, it's a sketched image of a woman, and not Kaylee or anyone else that Hiro is being accused of losing, whether accurately or not. "I did not take him," he repeats again, for Peyton, only now allowing minor annoyance to filter into his voice, but he doesn't let it get snappish, doesn't let himself rise to argument.

He plucks down the picture, before disappearing — only to reappear by Peyton's side and putting a gentle hand on her wrist. She's gotten a couple of images off, and he doesn't wrest the device from her. It's a simple gesture and request, for her to stop.

"Hey," Joseph says to Ygraine, coming to stand beside her. He looks a little sleepless, certainly anxious, arms crossed tightly over his chest and worry knitting his brows. He does extend a hand to take her's, allowing a brief smile.

"Rhys Bluthner is completing a task," Hiro says, dealing a glance towards Magnes, but now that he's begun to speak of the purpose of this meeting, he doesn't let this intrusion interrupt him. "He is— gathering information that will allow us to find Kaylee Thatcher. Samuel Sullivan struck against her while we were completing an errand in Egypt — I believe he attempted to kill her. But we have reason to believe she is instead lost in time, too far for Rhys to see. His postcognitive powers begin to blur after a few decades. Without Kaylee, we have no way to continue to mend the damage being done on the timeline."

He pauses, vanishing once more to reappear more towards the centre of the room. "But we also cannot simply keep fixing things as we go. It is time to end things. I have a means of luring the villain out into the open. But it is— " He pauses, tries to think of adequate explanations. But there never are. "It is more complicated than that."

At Ygraine's side, Joseph is tense, silent, and visibly unhappy — but he is for now listening rather than pursuing quarrel, for all that a glare narrows at the reasoning as to why they should find Kaylee. As if rescuing alone wasn't enough.

If Delia did see the cucumber run away from the sandwich, she's not letting Sable know. Giving the rocker a small smile, she catches sight of Peyton taking pictures and ducks her head away. She didn't used to be camera shy, but she also didn't used to be hiding from the government and she never before had a warrant out for her arrest. As a side note, the redhead's also never been more proud of the fabulous job she's doing evading authority, even though they're not really looking for her.

"Who is Francois?" The young nurse finally asks her companion. She also gives a small wave to Ygraine in greeting and then a smile to Magnes as he rushes in.. looking very much like a superhero in training. "Is he French or someone from Manhattan with a French name? I don't think I've ever met a French person before…"

Her voice drifts off as Hiro begins speaking. Every once in a while she glances at Sable and then Magnes with her eyebrows raised, the silent question 'is this really happening?' is written in neon letters across her forehead. "Kind of… wow… Yeah. Magnes, do you know where we're going?" She's whispering now, not that she doesn't want to listen, she's just confused.

Shaking Joseph's hand, Ygraine intently studies the tired man's expression for a few moments… then figures that he's almost certainly had enough people worrying at or trying to mother him, and looks back to the rest of the group - in time to catch Delia and Sable's gestures of greeting… and the latter's fancy-footwork with the cucumber slice. Hastily stifling a snort of laughter, she instead offers the diminutive woman a grin.

Then the number of black-clad sword-wielders in the room doubles.

Having been unaware of anyone having been mislaid before she got here, Hiro's explanation would normally be thoroughly captivating for Ygraine. But Magnes's presence results in the Briton blanching - her normally pale complexion turning deathly, while the leather of the glove still worn creaks audibly as her fingers tighten into a clenched grip on her helmet. With her whole body tense, she takes a long, unsteadily deep breath in through her nose, nostrils flaring as she works hard at calming herself and refocusing upon Hiro.

As the spatial-manipulator moves to stop the pictures, Cardinal's lips twitch in a faint curve. One can't blame him for trying, after all.

"Sullivan… Arnold. Kira St. Croix… how many other people does he have at his beck'n call here?" The smile fades entirely, head shaking as he turns to look towards the door. A slight lift of his chin, not seeming surprised to see the late arrival, "…Magnes."

"Sorry," Peyton breathes, slipping the camera back into her pocket and looking through the corner of her eyes at Cardinal, much like a child blaming another child for getting them in trouble, cheeks coloring slightly.

Her eyes narrow at the mention of Sullivan, Arnold, and Kira, and she tosses her now-shorter-cropped hair back away from her face, chin lifting with a resolved defiance. She doesn't look like the weeping, broken girl Hiro last saw but instead one bent on revenge.

That they're looking for Kaylee is good, but she's still worried about Francois, and she casts a look up at Cardinal, then back to Hiro. "After we find Kaylee, are we going to find Francois? We didn't go to rescue Teo just to lose him to wherever some other you has decided to bring him," she says, pushing the issue — after all, Francois is one of theirs. "Is there anyone else lost in time?" That question just sounds ridiculous, and she frowns after it leaves her lips.

"Which one of them's the terrakinetic? Because I'm pretty sure I shot that one a bit ago. Or… years ago. Whatever." Time Travel makes things so messy. "And don't look so down, Rich. It seems like this side has plenty willing to help out, too. And we've done alright so far… right?" That last bit is directed over at Hiro, since he's the man with the plan in the first place. "Is it ever not complicated?" She asks as a hand moves to brush off some of the dust and dirt on her clothes. "I'm sure whatever it is, we can do it. Better than playin' like duct tape on time, yeah?"

Sable wrinkles her nose, eyes tipping upwards in thought as she tries to make the name 'Francois' ring a bell. One does, clapping dimly in a cobwebbed corner of her rarely-used memory. "I met a faggot named that. Real faggoty name, too. He was French f'r real, far 's I c'n tell," is what she has to offer, not exactly a surfeit of information, but it's what she's got, "I'd say it'd be a mighty big coincidence if they were th' same, 'n' all, but coincidence don't much come int' play in matters like this, eh?"

Magnes, however tardy, gets a wide smile and the same hand lifted Ygraine was offered, though this time sans sandwich - the edible is currently being pulverized between her chompers, Sable's cheek's bulging a little as she regards Magnes fondly. She can't address him 'til she's gulped, but once she does she claps him on the shoulder. "That's what I'm talkin' 'bout, boy! Knew y'd make it. We gotta be here. Fuckin' destiny, 'n' no mistake."

But now the adults have started talking. Sable shuts up to listen, being not incapable of behaving, just generally disinclined. As it is, Hiro's sit. rep. doesn't mean a whole lot to Sable, but she listens as best she can. Kaylee she knows, and her welfare is a concern, though she doesn't make a show of it - that's a job for others, closer and more worthy of bearing that banner.

"Francois is a good soldier, he's French, and we've worked together. If I had to choose anyone to have my back on a mission, it'd be Francois. France has the most hardcore military on the planet, despite common misconceptions." Magnes offers Sable another smile, patting her on the shoulder while simply choosing to stand there next to her.

At Delia's whisper, he shakes his head and shrugs helplessly. "I have no idea where we're going, I'm here to make sure Sable and everyone else comes back alive. This is the last time I go on a mission, so I thought I'd make it count. I had no idea so many people were missing." He frowns slightly at Hiro, a clear bit of judgement, but he doesn't say anything to indicate what they are. "And, Kira, seriously? This person write in a little black book and give people heart attacks too?"

It seems the alte arrivals just keep coming and coming, this time with a familiar redheaded Irishwomanstepping through the door, voice and accent adible before hand as she grumbles out something about money and…. cabbage? to "mum". But as she steps through that door and lays eyes on the amass of people - a few folks in particular - she lets out a loud gulp, turning the phone a bit away. "Can I call you back later, mum? I have t' tend t' something important for the moment. No, it's not serious, just - yes, I'll call you back later." Clearly, it's more serious than she lets on, but then, it's always hard to explain the intracacies of secret meetings and timetravel to parents, isn't it?

Hanging up the phone and slipping it down into her jeans pocket, Quinn offers a bit of a weary wave, moving immediately towards Ygraine. "I'm, uh, quite sorry for being late, I had some work things t' tend to an'- ah, feck it, what'd I miss?"

Following close behind Magnes (but not close enough to see the sword poking out of his pack) is Jaiden. Dressed in clean jeans, a t-shirt, and a button down shirt over the whole thing with a trenchcoat to keep the rain off. It's not really fashionable, but it does keep him dry from the rainstorm outside. He pauses in the doorway, olive gaze flicking from one form to another before it rests on Delia. Lifting a hand to draw attention to himself, or at least to draw her attention to him, he makes his way across the room, ducking a string here and there, being careful not to catch on anything as he makes his way to Delia and Sable. "Hope I'm not too terribly late." His head pokes up at Quinn's comment. "Yeah, what she said."

"Sullivan sank a building into the ground," Hiro mentions, resting his arms to fold across his chest, eyes a little distant as he thinks. "And so I believe earth-moving is his ability, yes. There is Kira and Arnold," he nods to Cardinal, "a woman with superhuman agility capabilities, and an old man who has an ability like my own, and is being used as a vehicle to change history. They had a possessor and a hydrokinetic of some kind, but they have both been killed."

By us, doesn't really need to be said. The pensive twitch to Hiro's mouth communicates it enough. "There is another woman, also, Linda Tavara. She, like some of the others, is not from our time, but I believe Sullivan brought her forward when he recruited her. She is very dangerous, and has multiple abilities under her control. She steals them from others. She too remains a threat. Those are the only villains I am aware of. I was never able to know, how Sullivan chooses his marks.

"But it won't matter anymore."

He looks towards Quinn and Jaiden entering, and some relief that everyone is where they are meant to be overrides irritation as he nods to them. "We are just discussing the tasks we have set out for us. Rescuing Kaylee Thatcher from the past, and laying a trap for Samuel Sullivan. I have not explained the complicated part yet," he adds, a little primly. "To put it simply, Tamara says that if we attempt to kill Samuel Sullivan… we will fail at what we do."

"Deathnote?" Delia whispers to Magnes, she's not a big fan of cartoons, but that one was playing during her night shifts at the hospital during the winter. She always lost the coin toss and wasn't allowed to change the channel. Jaiden's hand has her returning the same greeting and giving a big smile.

Until Hiro resumes his talk… and her eyebrows knit into a tight frown. "Arnold is the old man? The one that was taking people away from the jungle?" Her whisper is this time directed toward Jaiden, presuming he knows a lot more about all of this than she does. He has, after all, made two trips… which by her estimation makes him an expert.

"Oh!" She exclaims, holding her hand up in the air like an over eager school girl in the middle of her best class. "Oh oh! Uhm… What about sleep? You could put him to sleep… in a coma where he thinks he's still working on everything."

So focused was she upon trying to calm down after Magnes's arrival, Ygraine actually missed Quinn's entry - jumping slightly when her fellow faux-redhead speaks. Quinn earns a very warm, broad, and distinctly relieved look, being grabbed for a one-armed hug… before Jaiden receives the same gratitude of expression over the Irishwoman's shoulder, Ygraine clearly both pleased and relieved to see him. She attempts to beckon him over to her and Quinn, and away from his waiting girlfriend.

Villains. The hint of a smile can't help but creep up on Richard Cardinal at the reminder that there's still part of the japanese time traveller that's the same Super Hiro that he'd met before… and that he'd read about in the comic books. It's only a hint, but sometimes those little moments are all we have to remind us that not all innocence is lost.

"Hey, Jaiden," he greets in quiet tones, raising up a hand in a welcoming gesture to the hydrokinetic, turning back to regard Hiro for a moment as he finishes up. "Then we target the time traveller," he suggests, "If we deal with Arnold, Sullivan can't threaten the time-stream any longer." He doesn't argue against Tamara's predictions. While he doesn't believe in destiny, hypocritically he believes in her.

The tall brunette opens her mouth to speak just as Cardinal voices her thoughts, and she nods instead. "He's ill and on oxygen. I would have shot him when I had the chance but W-Wendy was standing next to him." The tremble on that 'W' of her friend's name is the first sign of her nervousness and fear, but once she closes her mouth, her eyes narrow again. "And I think chaining Sullivan up in the Redbird basement could be an alternative option. We can take turns beating the crap out of him."

Monica looks a little satisfied when she see Jaiden walking in. It means they did something right, at least. She's still covered in the dirt from around his family's ranch, even. "Well, I'm not gonna argue against not killin' somebody… but I don't know where you'd detain a guy who can rip the ground out from under you. Or himself." And personally? She doesn't like the idea of negation. So she doesn't bring it up.

And then there were three. Any residual concern about the validity of her interpretation is banished the moment Sable sees Quinn step into the room. The Irishwoman receives a vigorous wave and a large grin from Sable, though she doesn't bother trying to compete with Ygraine for proximity. That's she's here, that she's involved, is what matters.

Sable hikes herself up onto the table next to the sandwiches, letting her legs swing as she slouches forward, elbows resting on her knees. She hasn't got Magnes' urge to offer information, or Delia's desire to contribute ideas. She was never a good student, but as a musician she's a decent listening, and listening is what she's set to do right now. For all that this entire matter revolves around her there are obviously a lot of intricate, like, things at work that she doesn't understand.

"Yes, Death Note." Magnes whispers back to Delia, before speaking up loud enough for everyone else to hear. "Since we're talking about time travel, I don't think Hiro means we'll fail as in he's too strong, I think he means Sullivan has screwed us over using Kip S. Thorne's calculations, or Novikov's self-consistency principle. Meaning, whatever we do, Sullivan lives, no matter how improbable. It's possible, in theory."

He shrugs after that little geeky outburst, getting back on to the subject at hand. "I could get him in the air and freeze his body in one spot from all directions, but I fly pretty slowly. If he's anything like White, by the time I got him off the ground, half of everything would be destroyed already." So, scratch that idea! "Displace the guy at the end of time? Though something tells me Death isn't just waiting there with the keys to the universe."

Caught between two very lovely ladies, Jaiden gives Delia a smile and a wink before wandering over to stand next to Ygraine, listening to all of the suggestions, thinking on his own. "We can't kill him because that would change the future that Hiro's already seen. We can't strand him anywhere because that'll just piss him off and he'll come wandering in a few months or years later, causing havoc that no-one wants to deal with. We can't negate him because that requires drugs we don't have, drugging him, and keeping him somewhere that we can regularly administer the dosage to keep him normal.

Jaiden pauses in his conversation and takes a bit of a step forward, looking to Hiro, looking to Monica still stained with the dust from the outback - it is good to see her in one piece - before he continues. "If he and I had a disagreement, we'd sit down over a few pints and see if we couldn't work out what the problem is. Has anyone figured out exactly why he's sending people back in time to erase people from the past? What is so important that he's willing to risk the timeline in such a way? We figure that out, and we have a solution that doesn't end with us killing a bloke who some might think needs a little killing."

Hiro listens attentively to the words he gets in return, nodding once. "Targeting the time traveler seems the simplest solution," he agrees. "Without Arnold's ability, there is nothing that Samuel can do to the time stream. But I am unsure of Arnold's allegiance — he has seemingly rescued some of us before, in his own way. I think it is why Kaylee is lost and not dead. If we had more time, we could perhaps locate him and gain his assistance."

But there is no time, is the implication to a small shrug that Hiro gives. "He has still caused us much harm, and I know nothing of his true motives. He must be stopped, and so much Samuel.

"When I recruited Kaylee, I managed to acquire a drug from a group known as the Institute — it is the power to boost abilities, allowing Kaylee to create permanent mental blocks in the minds of people with memories they cannot have. I stole it approximately two and a half years from now, to ensure that it would be a refined version. I was also able to require two vials that held a solution of what we know to be the— Evolved virus." Hiro pauses, looking a little sick at the mention of it — having come close to dying of the same virus himself.

He has nothing in his hand to produce or show off. Presumably, such a thing is kept somewhere secretive. "It is not quite the same. I believe it was designed to damage the abilities of Evolved, and not kill them. But Tamara did not— elaborate in much detail." Anyone who has ever talked to Tamara might know that Tamara going into detail would be clear as mud anyway.

The page he had taken from the string-web, he now holds up at Jaiden's words. The portrait of a woman, older than the ones in the room, with lightly shaded hair to imply blondeness, is artfully drawn on what looks like a torn notebook page. "Her name is Vanessa Wheeler," he simply says, when it comes to what Hiro knows of why. "She may be the key. But I do not think Sullivan will be open to negotiations."

He tips a look to Magnes, and adds, "If I must strand him in a time, I may. But I do not wish for him to become an unknown variable."

Glancing at Jaiden as he walks away, Delia twitches her eyebrows slightly before focusing on Hiro again. She jams her hands into her pockets and fiddles her thumb around the carefully folded little crane contained therein.

The vial catches her attention, so much so that she takes a step or two backward and bumps into the table with the sandwiches. It causes a bit of a racket, to which she flushes a little and clears her throat. "Uhm… sorry." With her head bowed down, she waits for everyone else to continue.

Keeping an arm around Quinn, Ygraine tries to keep her attention focused upon Hiro… and definitely not upon the other one with a sword. She spares Jaiden a mildly frustrated look when he steps further away, taking himself out of easy range for a whispered conversation. Instead, she opts to quietly address the group - speaking, she suspects, for at the very least the man to her left as well as herself. "Let's all avoid any death this time. And not take kidnapping or 'losing' people as easy alternatives, either. There've been far too many fatalities and far too much damage in this process already."

"You've been dosing Kaylee with /amphodynamine/? Jesus…" Cardinal pushes his fingers back through his hair, his head shaking ever so slightly in apparent disapproval of the time traveler's choice of methods. Of course, a 'future version' may not have any dangerous side effects. He's not in any position to know.

A sigh whispers past his lips, and he nods once, "Alright. So we draw him out… separate Sullivan from Arnold somehow… and tag them, or at least Sullivan, with the virus."

The mention of the various chemicals and formulas has Peyton suddenly looking up, the proverbial lightbulb practically lighting over her head. "What about negation gas — or a negator? When we trap them, lure them out however, with that woman or something else, I don't know, we could negate them… or do both, the virus and negation, just in case it doesn't take?" she offers. Too bad negation gas isn't a dime a dozen.

Her head tilts at Cardinal's reaction to the amp drug, and if this were cartoons, a second light bulb would alight above the first. "I can't find people unless I know them. I haven't been able to with just photos, anyway, but maybe with that drug I could — if we can't find this Vanessa woman by normal methods." Of course, she and Cardinal own a security company — they should be able to.

"You want to give them the virus? This is the solution?" It's a momentary outburst, one from emotion, not intelligence. "I mean… what if it gets out again?" Monica, for one, doesn't want to go through all that again. "Isn't there something else to do?"

"We're not using that drug. Kaylee already happened, that's fine, but as long as I'm here, I'm not letting anyone take that risk. Peter tricked me into taking the drug once, without really warning me of any dangerous side effects. Well, there were dangerous side effects, and they were ability specific ones." Magnes explains with clear disapproval, frowning in Hiro's direction, then Peyton's.

"You don't know what you're volunteering for. Now, if we want to stop a time traveller without killing him, that's something I've given a lot of thought. So far my best solution is to do something that they can't run away from, something that only you can undo, so they either have to stay where they are, or inevitably come back to you for a fix." He raises a hand to massage his forehead between two fingers, a hint of frustration brewing. "I'd say the virus is off the table too. Where's rational Hiro with the Kensei sword? I'm thoroughly convinced that you're a younger Hiro, which is the reason for all the mistakes and overtly drastic suggestions. Or maybe you're an older and more pragmatic Hiro, but you're not this time's Hiro. I'm not comfortable with it at all, so I'm hoping we're a democracy here."

There is the sound of a short jiggle of the door out front, and the quiet squeak of hinges call ahead to those in the back regarding a late arrival. Footsteps follow, getting closer. After poking around the shop, Luther opens the door to the back room widely, and stops short at the sight of the gathered. Hard to say who's more likely to be surprised - Luther for showing up almost randomly to the gathered, or the others upon seeing that the man is wearing a dirty shirt that some could recognize as dried blood, and lots of it, smeared on the fabric at all sorts of angles. And in his hand, a small folded white paper crane. Hey look! Sandwiches! "Uh. AA meeting's down a couple blocks, right?" he covers for himself, up until he spots a few familiar faces amidst the unfamiliar. And of course, there's Doc Brown himself standing there, sword and all.

"You again," he grunts in Hiro's direction.

The mention of a virus makes Quinn visibly uncomfortable, though not enough to verbally protest like Magnes does - she's faily confident taht whatever happens she won't be the one handling either it oif only because she;s libable to trip and get these materials everywhere, and she's willing to yield to people who know more about these kinds of things than she does. "Negation gas? I think I've heard that mentioned before," she remarks,r eaching up and scratching the back of her head. "I dunno, I don't really have anythin' t' add t' this. I'm willin' t' yield t the guy in charge on this one, I guess. If there's a better idea," she says, looking over in Magnes' direction, "Couldn't hurt t' share. Just make 'em better the the last time you knew what t' do." She sounds sheepish and out of her element the entire time she speaks - though ther eis a distinctly acerbic tone to the last part.

His piece finished, Jaiden steps back within range of Ygraine, giving her shoulder a squeeze before giving Delia a small smile and walking over to where she stands, deftly avoiding the cucumber sandwich table. Someone spent a lot of time on these, so might as well be polite. He takes two, munching one down in three quick bites before speaking again. "It's not pretty but as much as something may turn our stomach, we might have to do it. Sadly, it's a bit too far gone to take anything off the table, sword-guy that's not that japanese sword guy." Jaiden smiles to Magnes before turning to the rest of the group. "That said, I don't mean to sound…dunno….selfish, but what about us? We going to load a dart gun up with power-killing virus and fire it into him, hoping it acts before the world drops out from beneath us? Is there a chance we could get infected and lose our abilities for permanent?" For some people, a normal life might be a dream come true, but for others, being anything less than evolved is a life not worth living. Where Jaiden falls in this range is unclear at the moment.

Resting a hand on Delia's shoulder, giving it a squeeze, he settles there, taking in the rest of the conversation, even going so far as to pull out a notepad to take quick shorthand notes. "Anyone know any negators offhand that don't mind a little jaunt through time?

The look that Magnes gets could strip paint off walls, from Hiro. The diminutive Japanese man rounds on the gravity manipulator. "You were sent back in time, and you were meant to listen to her." Hiro now points towards Quinn. "You did not, and allowed your arrogance to cloud your judgment. Your damage to the timestream ensured that Kaylee and I had to go to Egypt and erase the memories of many, and it was during that time that Samuel Sullivan made his attack on Kaylee. If you will not listen to instruction now as you have not in the past, then you will be uninvited, Magnes Varlane. I do not ask you to trust me always. I only ask that you do so now if you intend to save the world — and trust Tamara Brooks' prophecies."

He pauses at the sound of Luther entering, still a little shiny bruised from the man's attack, and the time traveler manages to nod, uncomfortably, his way.

"I dunno about overly drastic, when we got— what it sounds like, at least two people missing in the past. And other people have died too," Joseph now points out. "I don't trust anythin' coming from the Institute. But if it helps— " He glances towards the others in the group who share his concern from before. "If it helps, Kaylee never showed signs of any— negative effects, from using that Amp. She shoulda done — I've felt that stuff before. But I can only guess it was clean."

Hiro breaks his attention from Magnes, his calm back in place, for all that his temper was practically serene. "I do not think Tamara would direct me to loose anything that is airborne. From what I could tell of the Institute's data, it was a refined weapon."

Moving across the room, he holds the image of Vanessa Wheeler out towards Peyton and Cardinal. "If you are able to find more information on this woman, then my intention is to get her cooperation in locating Samuel, or having her assist us in luring him out into the open. Through time, so that Arnold has no choice but to come with him."

Joseph starts to speak again, but stops, holding off his question until at the very least, this part can be agreed upon.

Stepping aside for Luther to grab a few of the sandwiches, Delia gives him a smile and then pulls the packet of Sanka out of her pocket and offers it to him with a shrug. They always have coffee at AA meetings, there doesn't seem to be anything to drink with the sandwiches. She places it on the table in front of him letting him take it if he needs to or leave it be for someone else.

Then she clears her throat into her fist and steps forward, trying to avoid the myriad of string by ducking underneath until she finds a good place to command just a little attention. Giving each person in the room a pointed look before addressing the Japanese man, she sets her lips into a grim line. "I know that my idea probably wasn't a good one but is a virus the best idea? They're unpredictable and they mutate from person to person… How do we know that Samuel Sullivan won't be a patient zero to a new strain that kills everyone?" With those questions asked, she lowers her head and the n quickly glances around with an apologetic smile. "Sorry… I'll just… go back now." Then she ducks under the strings again, practically rushing back to her spot near the table. This time not hitting it and threatening the precious sandwiches.

When Magnes passes on his opinions and criticises others, Ygraine finds herself once again struggling to keep her reactions in check. Hiro's response pre-empts whatever she might have been about to say - and she delivers a warm squeeze to Quinn while listening to him talk.

"I trust Tamara", she volunteers. "And, personally, I have thus far seen no reason to mistrust our host today. I agree that using anything based on a viral experiment… doesn't sit well with me." She nods to Delia. "The world's come too close to extinction at least once that I know of, and I fear that might not be the only time. But do we have any other viable options? Perhaps Kaylee, once rescued, could insert suitable blocks…? I can't think of anything else myself."

At the mention that the time traveller's been in the Institute's files - two years in the future - Cardinal's eyes narrow a little behind his shades as he regards Hiro for a few long and silent moments. Then he shakes his head slowly from side to side, saying quietly, "Ez— the head of the Institute's no stranger to using viruses as weapons. He would've made sure it wasn't a contagious strain… and he would've refined the amp to a safe form as soon as possible. I can believe that."

A half-turn, and he brings a hand up, fingers curling a bit to beckon Luther over to where he's standing with Peyton and Monica. Then, flatly, he says, "Get out or obey orders, Magnes. We don't have time for your black-or-white moralism right now."

"Samuel Sullivan deserves to die slow and painfully," Peyton says coolly to those who seem to think it cruel and unusual punishment, a fate too inhumane for the villain in question. "Or at least have his power taken away. As does Arnold. Did Tamara see that happening successfully? That we wouldn't kill him, but we'd successfully take away his ability with the virus? If she saw it — well, I trust her." She shrugs and steps forward to take the photograph from Hiro.

Sparing a smile for Luther, she then looks over at Jaiden, then back to Hiro. "The only negator I know of — he's Institute, so I don't know if we can trust him or not." She peers at the picture of Vanessa Wheeler, and looks up at Hiro. "Do we know — does she have a power?" The photo is passed to Cardinal.

Monica looks over at Luther as he enters, a little wave in greeting for the homeless man that followed them home one day. Sort of. "I'm sorry, that virus just makes me nervous. If anything goes wrong… you know?" She does understand the need for dirty fighting from time to time, but she still doesn't like it. At least, when she's not pumped with adrenaline she doesn't like it.

"I'm sorry, I didn't listen to Quinn because… nevermind, I'm just sorry." Magnes straightens his backpack, glancing to Sable with an apologetic expression. "This isn't about morals or black and white, it's about responsibility. I don't trust this Hiro, and I'd rather not risk making things worse than they already are." Holding the straps of his backpack, he starts heading for the exit. "Doctor Harve Brennan, I don't personally know him, but he's a negator. Good luck. There's enough people here for me to say I quit." What he quits, is left up in the air, but there's clearly enough weight for it to mean more than just the mission.

Whoa whoa, hang on here. Who's dying? Who's Institute? What the hell's a negator? Luther goes from a gracious duck of his head in gratitude to Delia's gift as he receives it into an available pocket, to taking his sandwiches over to the gathered of Redbird. The man has some catching up to do, it seems, or he's just here for moral support of something. A thin but genuine crook of a smile tilts at Peyton in return. The man participates for now just by listening in and munching quietly away, despite the semblance of conspiracy happening before him. Until, that is, he pipes up, "You're not all talkin' about the psychokiller from the eighties who eats people's brains, walks through shadows and sets himself on fire are you?" A meaningful glance flicks over to Hiro, then then others general. Are they?

THe grimace on Quinn's face hides her exact internal feelings on the chiding Magnes recieves, instead forcing the Irishwman to let out a sharp sigh. "I trust Tamara too," she remarks after a moment, looking over at Hiro and the others, mostly because it seems to be a repeated sentiment in the last few minutes, one she hasn't shared herself. "The way I see it… I dunno. I don't really beileve in killin' anyone if we don't have t'. But I… guess it's not that easy, is it?" This is a lesson Quinn seems to learning slowly, causing her to roll her shoulders in a bit of a hug as she looks over at Luther. "Whatever. I'm… here t' help. As long as I don't need t' actually carry this virus thing, I;ll do whatever I'm needed for."

"Let's just end this thing, one way or another. Preferably without him being dead in the end, definitely without any of us being dead in the end, and with as little chaos to this spiderweb as we possibly can." Jaiden ignores the chastising of Magnes, concentrating more on Hiro. "So what's the plan, Japanese sword guy?" He's never been specifically introduced…the little man in black is just the guy who yanks him through time. "I've got my pack in the car, loaded up for just about anything as long as you don't drop me, say, in the 1800's or something. That'll take a little bit of time to scrape together or….since you can blank minds…." Jaiden grins. "Shrek and Donkey off again on a whirlwind adventure…through time…"

Insert orchestra hit here, or ominous thunderclap.

Trust in the Institute and its choices of weapons is— a stretch. Hiro knows. He is, however, on the same page as Cardinal with regard to what the Institute is capable of. However, he does send a glance around the room, from Delia to Ygraine, a knit of worry working in his brow. "If I can come up with an alternative to the virus," he concedes, "then I will try. But I too have faith in both Tamara, and the technlogy of the Institute." He doesn't say, he has tried. Almost does, though, in the hesitation that follows — but trying is rarely good enough anyway.

"From what I made of Tamara's prophecy, she believes that the virus will strip them of their power. I do not think she would endanger us. However… those that are wary of the virus do not have to use it. We require a group to go back in time and retrieve Kaylee Thatcher." This is where Joseph's posture straightens some, glancing around the room as if suddenly realising that it's up to these people, presumably.

He's a little uncertain, but, he doesn't have any supermans or batmans or spidermans on his speed dial either. And he isn't one, himself. He sends a glance towards Magnes, tensing, and looking towards Hiro as if waiting for him to stop the young man from leaving. The time traveler doesn't. If it's a question of trust, then he can do a lot of things.

Forcing Magnes to trust him is not one of them

Hiro addresses Luther instead. "No," Hiro simply answers, folding his arms. "And if anyone else here does not wish to stop Sullivan or rescue Kaylee, then I will not stop you from leaving also. You may decide today, or when we meet again, what you would like to do. You have some time to decide and prepare. Retrieve Vanessa, and bring her to a location to confront Sullivan and end these time battles. You may otherwise go to the past to find Kaylee, once Rhys returns with his information. I do not think it will be a safe mission," he clarifies, wryly.

"Those are the final tasks, and we will plan more detail in the coming day. We will be finished— all of this will be finished," he glances over his shoulder, towards the drooping string web, "before the 8th."

Giving a quick glance between the rest of the people, Delia grimaces a little bit and then sucks a squeak of air between her teeth. "I'll go where the virus goes. If it doesn't work the way you think it might… You might need medical-ish type stuff.." She takes a deep gulping breath and then lowers her gaze to the floor, quieting for the next volunteer or unvolunteer to step up or out.

Surprise, then clearly-evident and powerful relief can be seen on Ygraine's face as Magnes makes his announcement and starts to leave. Then Luther manages to grab her attention with that… memorable question, only for Jaiden to bring up a thoroughly unexpected reference. By the time that Hiro resumes speaking, Ygraine's brain is reeling. Still, she does her best to gather her wits and focus her thoughts upon the swordsman's words.

"Shall we… try to form teams to complement each other's abilities?" Delia receives another approving nod from the Briton. "Mundane as well as… otherwise. I know it worked out, but I'd prefer not to repeat the experience of buying a few seconds of not being shot at by pretending that a can of boot-polish is a grenade…." Her voice trails off as she realises that that particular detail had never been passed on to Quinn, at whom she now rather determinedly does not look. "Ah-hrrm. I'll go wherever I'm of best use. Though… if you need people to go far into the past, a batch of us foreigners might make sense. Being somewhat clueless about the details of what we find will seem more credible to any locals we encounter."

"I've got experience using viral weapons." It's not exactly a statement that most people can make, Cardinal's head shaking slowly from side to side, "And if I am infected, I can make myself non-contagious. I'll go with the team going after Sullivan." His gaze cuts over towards the web design as well, his lips pursing in a tight line. "We have a lot of work to do before the eighth as it is."

A sidelong look cuts towards Luther, one brow lifting a little. "I see you've met Samson," he allows, his tone dry as ashes, "I don't think he's with Sullivan. He's not what you'd call a team player."

Luther gets a wide-eyed look for the non sequitur, and Cardinal's mention of the name earns a shiver. But her eyes go to Cardinal's face, then flicker to Delia and then back to Hiro. Her eyes are narrowed and she lifts her chin slightly. "I'll help with finding the woman," she says with a nod toward the photo. "And go with Cardinal." Her reasons are twofold: she feels safe with Cardinal and she wants to get a shot in on Sullivan and Arnold if she can. This time the "shot" might be viral rather than from a gun, but avengers can't be choosers.

Her words are confident and curt, but she follows with a much more Peyton-like, "If that's okay."

Monica gives Luther's question a blink, but that's the extent of her reaction. She is, after all, readily accepting of the weird ever since she found out her cousin is a digital entity and like… her boss eats nukes. Life is strange. She turns back to Hiro and notes, "I'll go wherever I'm most useful. Mostly I kick things really hard." It's a glittering resume. "But I wouldn't mind keeping with my group…" By which she means Endgame.

"If you need me to save Kaylee, I'll do it, since that was my fault, but I don't want anything to do with any of this other stuff." Magnes states as he simply stands by the exit now, intending to just quiet down and watch.

"Samson, not Samuel you say?" queries Luther at Cardinal, looking oddly at his bossman for a few skips of a beat. And one then can wonder where all the blood on his singed shirt is from… "Guess since I'm here and everybody's picking teams, I need to choose too, huh?" He mulls over the options. Finally, Luther goes diplomatic and puts in, "You probably already know who's going with who, right?" Hiro's the focus of that rhetorical question. "Since you know me better than me, I'll just let you pick where I could go."

"I'll go wherever anyone needs someone. I'm good at sneaky sneaky or straight up fighting so….whichever group doesn't have some muscle in it or could use some more, that's where i'll be." Jaiden crosses his arms over his chest, giving Delia a small smile before looking back at Hiro. "Three times back in time in the past two months….after this, we get a break, right?"

"I dunno about stoppin' Samuel directly. I'm not- I don't think I'm exactly suited for that." Quinn crosses her arms as she glances at Ygraine, and then looks on ahead at Hiro. "Best I can do is blind someone. Or make someone else invisible… which just blinds them too." She gives a bit of a shrug, before a more serious look crosses ehr face. "Kaylee, though…. she's my friend. If she needs help, an' that's where you think I'll fit, then I'd be all up for that."

She looks at Jaiden, then at Hiro, then back to Jaiden, then at Hiro. All the while her face contorts further into a worried grimace. Reaching out, she grabs Jaiden's hand and grips it tightly and shakes her head quickly. "No no, I — I want you to come with me… J-just in case. Unless you'd rather go with them?" Her nose wrinkles slightly and she lets the Australian man's hand loose and shrugs, dipping it back into her own pocket. "I mean… I'd like you to come with me… but…"

With a slow, easy motion, Jaiden pulls Delia's hand from her pocket and places it solidly in his, giving it a squeeze. "I'm your giant, remember? Where you go, I follow."

There is a ghost of a faint smile towards Luther, Hiro keeping it something of a secret, regarding whether or not he knows where people go. Magnes' retraction of quitting only gains a glance, but not verbal acknowledgement. Resolution for such a stand off may have to come on a different day, if it comes at all, as Hiro regards the group still standing, nodding once. "Then we will meet again soon. I only ask that you all be prepared, and I thank you for your willingness to help.

"There are things I must resolve, now, before that time comes." He blips out of existence, promptly, before flickering back, having just remembered instruction. "Please enjoy the sandwiches." That's for Rhys.

He poofs out of existence once more, displaced air waving the loaded web string, as easily edit-out-able of this present as he is of times future and past.

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