Karmic Entrances


cardinal_icon.gif valerie_icon.gif

Scene Title Karmic Entrances
Synopsis Cardinal gets a surprise visitor.
Date February 28, 2011

Redbird Security: Cardinal's Apartment

As the sun dips down beneath the noon's height, Cardinal's taking his lunch break; he's up in his apartment sprawled out on the couch with a paper-sided box of noodles cradled in his hands. He's dressed in his suit, but the jacket and tie are off, one leg hanging off the edge of the sofa and a pair of chopsticks between his fingers. A radio's on, playing some prog rock. Just stealing a moment's breath from the fight.

A moment's breath never seems to last long enough, does it. At least this interuption isn't one bearing news of death and destruction, but a small blonde head that appears peeking through the window that looks in from the outside. A smiling face that floats right through the glass and into the room, making the sudden vocal, "Knock knock." It's the most polite way Valerie can enter uninvited that she knows of. "Hi," she says with a raised hand, fingers splayed out.

"Jesus!" Cardinal tumbles off the couch, and comes back up with a gun in his hand, swept towards the… oh. The gun slides loose in his hand, which falls to his side, his other hand coming up to rub against his face. "Christ. Val. Do you know what a cell phone is? Don't do that."

"I know what a cellphone is… but I can't really get one when I don't have an identity— or money," Valerie says with a small shrug. "Do you always call ahead when you wander around in shadow form?" she asks with hands on her hips in a kind of 'no, I didn't think so' way. Even if he doesn't have a chance to answer. "I'm glad you didn't accidently shoot yourself, though… I would have felt really bad about that." Or anyone else either, for that matter. "Sorry." That addition makes her lower her arms from her hips.

"So this is karma, is it?" A heavy sigh, Cardinal's head shaking a little, although he's not really that upset. The safety's on, but he still puts the gun down carefully - tucking it under the cushions of the couch. God knows how many other weapons he has hidden around the surprisingly spartan apartment. "How've you been? It's…" He looks down at the mess he made of noodles on the floor, rubbing his chin, "Been awhile."

"Maybe a little," Valerie says with a grin, though it doesn't last too long as she floats forward and sits herself on that same couch that he just hit a gun under. It's not really a matter of comfort, because she doesn't leave any weight on the couch. It's all image. "Yeah, I… I've been around. And here I am now!" Blonde curls shift as she shrugs again. "Kaylee told me that you left her a message— about … about my dad. And Warren."

"Yeah." Cardinal drops himself down to sit opposite her on the couch, leaning back and offering her a faint smile - fragile, and not terribly honest, "I would've… called you, too, but I wasn't sure where you were staying at once we cleared out from the library. Communications with the Ferry're - unreliable at best."

"I still don't have a phone. I'll see if I can get one soon," Valerie offers, leaning forward a bit so that her hair falls foward again. It's such small shifts, not nearly as realistic as they should be. The shadows, especially, are all off. Her projections aren't perfect, by any means. "I'd rather talk about this stuff in person. Dad used to use phones to keep in touch with me, and honestly… I never really liked that. I couldn't see him with a phone. Not until I learned how to do this. Then we didn't have to do that anymore."

She hesitates visibly for a few moments. "Is he okay?"

"I don't know." Cardinal closes his eyes. "Okay enough to talk, I guess." There's a black bitterness to his voice, although he tries to make it flat. He fails. Weight sinking back into the cushions, fingers curling into the fabric of the sofa's arm a little. "They could do miracles if they wanted to. They've got… Claire's ability now, somewhere. They could heal him. If they wanted to. Repair anything physically wrong."

"Whose ability?" Valerie asks, not quite understanding the true nature of this person's ability or what it might mean for her dad. It's not really the top of her list of priorites at the moment, what those people have their hands on. "It'd be great if they fixed anything physically wrong with him…" Cause he's her dad. "But— do you know where they're keeping him, physically? I know it's no where in New York City…" And there's a hint in her voice that she's tested this theory. More than once.

"Presumably they've got him in the Massachusets Arcology," Cardinal says with a vague motion of one hand, "You'd have to ask Warren. They're not about to let me anywhere near him, of course… well, not this me. I'm willing to bet that the other me is keeping a certain distance too."

"Yeah, that's too far away for me to normally reach," Valerie says with a frown, settling back into the couch, almost seeming to sink into it a little cause she's not paying close enough attention to where it begins. "I'll have to get closer to Cambridge to do that. I lived there for a while, before dad moved me back to New York… Maybe I can get Warren to take me. I still have to meet him in person sometime. Do you happen to know a good neutral place we can meet that doesn't have robot patrols?"

Yeah, she knows about them.

"If you just ask," Cardinal says in rather dry tones, "I get the feeling that they might let you in to talk to him. Of course, I can't speak for how far Ezekiel's gone… at the very least, they'll try and convince you to join them." He rubs thumb and forefinger against the bridge of his nose, sighing quietly, "You could just meet him at his factory. Only robots there are his."

"Kaylee got in trouble meeting him at his factory— cause they were afraid she'd get followed. I'd not be able to go back to where I'm staying now if I go there, I don't think. Not physically," Valerie says, a little confusion in her voice, and showing in her forehead. Her expressions are overexaggerated, as if she has to think about showing them. "This whole 'super secret lifestyle' is so new to me…"

"It's a fairly stupid concern," Cardinal says with a slow shake of his head, "He knows where the Island is, after all, so if he really wanted to find you all…" He snorts, "But he's keeping to his fucking timeline, so he can't do anything too overt. Anyway. You could meet him here, I guess. Could lend you a spare office to ghost into or something."

There's a curiously thoughtful expression on her face for a few moments. Exaggerated, as all her projected expressions are. Valerie even simulates a thoughtful clicking sound, before she hops up onto her floaty feet. "I think I'll talk to Warren and see if he'll take me up to Massachusetts for a weekend. Kaylee probably won't like it, but I'm eighteen now, technically, so I'm allowed to make my own decisions."

"If you get in to see Edward," says Cardinal flatly, "Punch him in the fucking face for me." Of course, he knows that she won't. He rolls up to his feet, since she seems to be getting ready to leave, and heads into the kitchen to get some paper towels to clean up the mess of his lunch, "…and tell him it's from my parents."

"Can I say that you think he's an asshole instead?" Valerie asks after a few moments of hesitation, as if she might actually be considering the whole punching thing. It's hard to tell with all her expressions needing to be thought about. For a moment she was fairly blank in expression.

There's silence from the kitchen as he fetches the paper towel roll, Cardinal's head shaking a little as he walks back into the living room. "I guess I'll just have to save up that punch for the next time we're face to face," he mutters, dropping down to one knee to start cleaning up the noodles.

"You'd probably punch him way harder than me, anyway," Valerie says, as she makes simple motions of punching at the air. "I learned a lot of stuff growing up. How to punch wasn't one of them." And even her projection fails at it.

"Anyway— it's good to see you again. Sorry I kinda… hid after the news." Mutual hiding on both parts, somewhat, but she definitely has her part to apologize for. "I really did like the idea of you being my brother," she adds, before her projected form starts to disappear. Perhaps this is karma too. She's good at getting the last word.

"I still might've been," Cardinal replies quietly as he gathers up the noodles in the paper towel, shoving them into the paper container, "If Edward wasn't such a bastard."

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