Lay It All On The Table


cat_icon.gif elisabeth_icon.gif

Scene Title Lay It All On The Table
Synopsis Cat and Elisabeth discuss Minea's information.
Date June 19, 2009

Village Renaissance Building, Cat's Penthouse

Arriving by any of four elevators, visitors will find they open into three foot corridors facing wide double doors made from sturdy southern pine which swing outward and have the strongest locks available. The stairs lead to single doors, also outward opening, at the end of three foot corridors. Entry requires both a key and a keycard; other security measures are a video camera and voice communication terminal at all doors. The 4th Street side has floor to ceiling windows interrupted only by the access points. Cream colored curtains are normally kept closed.

This level has enough space for sixteen apartments. There is an office space with reception area, conference room, and executive office; a room for archery practice and other forms of physical exercise; a very well appointed kitchen and dining area; a music zone with an array of instruments, electronics, and amplifiers; an entertainment area with an HD set covering an entire stretch of wall from floor to ceiling; a locked room where security footage for the building is recorded and can be monitored; a laundry room; a staircase for roof access; central air and heating; the main bedroom and a few smaller guest rooms; plush deep wine carpet everywhere except the kitchen, laundry room and bathrooms; and track lighting everywhere overhead. The light levels can be lowered or raised in the entire place, or selectively by segments. The overall decor suggests the occupant is a woman.

She's still on administrative leave — it's nice to get two whole days off for being shot at! Or something. Elisabeth's been terribly busy in the middle of them, though, having driven to Maine practically in the middle of the night so as to beard the lioness in her den come the morning yesterday, and then driving back to Manhattan that same day, plus then putting in some time bringing up whatever files Cat has on Zimmerman and searching the Internet for additional information on his work before he retired.

Today finds her heading for the safehouse to check on Minea's condition (and what they did with the Company agent) and to check in with Cat. She lets herself into the building and has the desk call ahead to verify if she should meet Cat at the penthouse, and then she takes the elevator up. "Morning," she greets the brunette as she steps off the elevator.

She's up and dressed, casually so, this Friday morning. The doors across from the lift are open to admit the detective, who gets a thin smile of greeting. Cat seems focused, which isn't an uncommon thing, but this is a bit closer to how she was in the days immediately prior to tackling Kazimir Volken and his Genocidal Gang. "Yes," she agrees, "it's morning." A few steps are taken, she expecting to be followed and letting Elisabeth seal the door, the panmnesiac aiming to enter the office area where she has documents from Minea spread out and in the process of scanning into the computer.

"I've got everything laid out and being read, digitized too. Once it's all copied I'll contact Wireless and R.Ajas. It's a bit disturbing Primatech chooses to accuse Hana of election fraud."

Wearing jeans and a casual tanktop covered by a short-sleeved cardigan, Elisabeth is far more casual than usual too. She's even wearing sandals on her feet — exposing painted toenails. Maybe she's just a hair more girly sometimes than people think. "Actually, it's not. If you think about it… they didn't accuse her of anything. Minea picked up documents that implicate her. And back then, she worked for the Company, right? So… it would make sense that if they wanted an election rigged, Hana'd do it. But the best thing to do is ask her yourself. If she did do it, then I'm reasonably sure she's kicking herself these days…. but I'm also reasonably sure she won't lie about it, so long as you're not accusing her of something yourself. Just ask her as a matter of course."

"I don't believe she did," Cat answers as the office threshold is crossed and documents come into view. "It's not the first time I've heard of it, however. R.Ajas told me the election was doctored, and he used the name K.Apila for Wireless, but not in connection with that. What he did say was he intends to clean up the election mess. He may know who did it. It may even have been him or the one he calls mentor, T.Monk. I didn't ask questions then. But I will now."

Her eyes settle on other documents, as she remarks "Adam Monroe was a Founder too, it seems. And just as nasty as Kazimir was. That likely explains why he was with the Vanguard."

Elisabeth tilts her head. "If Adam was a founder, which is possible, he wasn't in that picture we found. However, Pratt wanted him dead if it was at all possible." She sighs. "Pratt's work was on the Shanti virus…. and she didn't know it had almost gotten loose. The woman literally went pale when I told her. But she's pointing in Zimmerman's direction too. He had been where she said he was, but he went missing a few months ago from Reseda, California — something of a coincidence, I'm thinking, since the DA of Reseda is also a founder. I've got a call in to the detective to see what I can get on the missing persons case."

"Did you ask her how to kill someone who regenerates?" Cat inquires speculatively. "She's had dealings with Adam, my guess her wanting him dead would be over the near release of the virus, which I have to presume is what got him locked up, so she might have formulated ideas on how to do it." Silence settles in for a few beats. "I want to talk with Mr. Bennet, show him what we have here and get his take on all of this."

"About Dr. Zimmerman, who worked on the original formula, if he's missing it's either because he learned Arthur wants to make serum and went into hiding, or Arthur got him. It's a question I'd ask Father, but…" There's anger showing, but not grief or guilt of the kind seen after Dani was abducted and left for dead. Parents, it seems, are less hard for her to sacrifice if it comes to that. "Maybe we can get them out, maybe not. But the larger goal comes first."

Elisabeth says quietly, "Cat….. I really hate to ask you this, but… " She bites her lip. "You've got so much riding on the idea that the intel your father is giving us is on the nose…. are you certain that he didn't have an agenda of his own? Given the fact that Arthur either tried or succeeded in killing him, it appears not, but…. it has to be asked whether we can trust what he's given us, just as we have to ask if we can trust what Minea brought. It looks like what it is, and mostly I'm willing to take it at face value, but … it needs to be assessed."

She's surprised to hear the question asked of her, Cat's eyes show this as they settle on the detective, with a sheet of paper from the files in her hand. "You think I'm just accepting all of this on faith? Didn't you hear me say I'll be asking Hana and R.Ajas directly about the elections and say I want to speak with Mr. Bennet on all of this together?"

Disbelief grows, as she continues speaking. "And do you really think I'm so stupid as to just assume a person who looks like Father is actually him now, after what happened?" She scoffs. "Fooled me once, shame on Arthur. Fool me again, shame on me. Now, as to what we already have, things are checking out from other sources. Arthur claimed Linderman and gang staged a coup, and here we have evidence supporting falseness in Nathan being elected, and we have Allen Rickham himself confirming he was blackmailed out of taking the oath because he got tested for SLC. As to Father's info, you came up with Doctor Zimmerman's name on your own, which supports what I was told, yes?"

Elisabeth puts out a hand and places it on Cat's shoulder. "Why is it when I question you, you automatically assume that I assume you're stupid?" she asks mildly, giving the shoulder a light squeeze — as if to say 'quit that.' "I swear to God, between you and Abby, there are days I could just scream. I'm just checking to make sure that you are double-checking everything we're getting. Because clearly my instincts about people suck rocks…. and it makes me leery of trusting anyone who's newer to this than me. Including Minea herself, in spite of the fact that she damn near got her head blown off yesterday. I don't think she's faking it, but… definitely ascertaining how much of her intel can be trusted is important." She nods to the question of Zimmerman. "Zimmerman's name is checking out, at least on the surface. She didn't mention the other name you've given me, and if you want me to follow up on that one as well, I can start working that angle."

A quiet chuckle escapes. "Maybe because I said I was looking at verifications, and not two minutes later you ask if I'm verifying at all?" Cat quirks a slight grin. "Y'know, asking Wireless and R.Ajas, wanting to speak with Noah Bennet?" Two cups of coffee on a nearby table are turned toward, one offered up for the detective."

"Regarding Minea, if she's faking it she's got help. If she didn't, she wouldn't have been at exactly the right place and time to get hit but not be killed, to boost her credibility. It's also possible they figured out what she was up to and arranged for her to succeed in stealing documents they wanted us to get and had the shooter attack to make her look good without telling her about it."

"There's one thing we can be totally sure of regarding both Primatech and Pinehearst. They're run by ruthless people."

Elisabeth quirks a grin at Cat. "Chalk it up to being wiped out and thoroughly paranoid at this point." She bites her lip. "I've been sitting on this hoping it wouldn't be an issue…. but our little Redbird's on the run from Arthur Petrelli. He's got something that Arthur wants really bad, bad enough for the Big Man to come after Richard personally, though he won't tell me what exactly. I have a thought that it could be the second half of the formula."

"So …. the possibility that Minea's cover got blown wide open and she's been set up as a patsy? Yeah… it's occurred to me. I thought of little else all day yesterday — running both of those scenarios around in my head. Her expression when she got shot, though? That makes me tend to trust her and lean possibly toward the latter. If Denton was working with Goodman and they wanted the Company and Pinehearst down, though, why the hell not just send her with information on both? Work with us instead of chasing her in without her knowledge?"

"The documents don't appear fake, in any case," Cat opines. "Things allegedly from the seventies look like it, no impossibly modern fonts on them. Newer documents look right too. They may not have much on Pinehearst to have sent, of course. If they did, they could likely have used their DHS links to have raided and closed the place long ago. Some of the items we already knew about. The Shanti virus and the specific strain of it Edward told us about. The virus being kept in Odessa and stolen by Odessa Knutson, Edward gave us that too. These are simple confirmations. We've learned of Adam being with the Vanguard through Cardinal, it's a thing which is consistent with him having tried earlier to wipe out a large chunk of population. And with him having been locked up inside Primatech. There's also your talk with Doctor Pratt, in which she turned pale on hearing Shanti nearly got out."

"It could, also, be that Mr. Denton is paranoid, that he believes we'd not trust anything given to us unless it was stolen, and so arranged for it to happen. Whatever is the truth in this range, none of what we have appears false."

"And you're probably right. Mr. Redbird seems to have held out on his employers. Not surprising, given his word to us and having asked to be put in touch with Hiro when Adam hired him."

Blowing out a breath as she walks around the apartment, listening to Cat and picking up documents here and there to skim, Elisabeth nods slightly. "All he'd tell me is that…. he beat them. Whatever he did, however he did it…. he won't let me send help his way, either. Presumably because of Arthur's tracking ability. So for now, we can hope that whatever he's got… Arthur can't get hold of. It might make them off-balance enough, though, for us to make a foray against them without a huge amount of life lost."

"We've been told, also, the man heading Frontline, General Autumn, is allegedly supposed to be tied to Arthur in using the serum to boost its ranks, and the bill is about to pass. Could this be making him desperate, the possibility of his window to use it as a bargaining chip closing and with it the success of his power grab? He no longer has Goodman to bring him info which gets Primatech run over, but he doesn't need it. All he needs is that serum."

Elisabeth glances at Cat and asks quietly, "And right now, we've got no idea whatsoever where the serum Helena brought back is." She sighs heavily. "Whatever's got its hooks into Teo, whoever might be controlling him…. they could have turned it over to him already." It's the thing that's been worrying Liz since Teo's insanity hit law enforcement's radar. "Look…. Cops are already looking for Edward Ray based on a post-cog's vision of him shooting Detective Myron. Tyler Case is implicated because he is the one that Myron was chasing — and I don't know if it was the older or younger version, so there's no way to know if the younger version might even be WORKING for the Company. Things are getting really complicated."

"As it turns out, fortunately, we don't need those doses," Cat reminds. "We've got Delphine to set things right both for people Tyler Case struck and those who were touched by Arthur. Fortunately. I've been thinking, sometime soon I need to start spending time around Norton and work on a redundancy plan. I'll make signs in my own writing that can be shown to calm me down, while I work at making myself remember normally and not lose seven years. Most people can function without their abilities, but I forget everything since age nineteen." Self-castigation is on her face with this decision, at not having done so long before.

"I think we need to lay it all on the table, Elisabeth," she turns to as the next topic. "The Founders, Matt and Molly, everything."

Having not gotten the memo on Delphine specifically — except to be told by Abby that she should contact Hiro, which Liz did — Elisabeth looks sharply at Cat. "Delphine can return people's abilities? Has she done so with Deckard and Abby?" And then she sucks in a deep breath and considers. "Who are you wanting to read in? Because honestly, Cat? Some of this is Cardinal's to tell, and the only reason I told you is that I needed someone to talk to."

"Helena," Cat replies. "This is no time to be holding back information from each other at the top. In the coming days we'll be arranging for Delphine to fix Deckard, Abby, and anyone else needing restoration we can contact. Deckard said he wouldn't let himself be tended until Abby is." While speaking she continues to scan documents into the computer.

Elisabeth nibbles her lip and says softly, "How the hell did Abby know about Delphine, then?" She looks at Cat. "The other night, I was getting someone to a safe haven, and Abby made a call. I know it wasn't to Helena. But Abby told me to get in touch with Hiro and get him back here - he could get his powers back. And now I can't get in touch with Abby."

Elisabeth nibbles her lip and says softly, "How the hell did Abby know about Delphine, then?" She looks at Cat. "The other night, I was getting someone to a safe haven, and Abby made a call. I know it wasn't to Helena. But Abby told me to get in touch with Hiro and get him back here - he could get his powers back. I …. " She has the grace to look abashed. "I owe Abby apologies, most likely, since I'm not dead yet."

"Over what?" Cat asks, seeming a bit confused. "I'd like to have Hiro come back, I should contact him myself. We could certainly use his proper talents to handle Arthur, it would make the whole thing altogether simple to execute. I've only hesitated to disturb him in a time of mourning, and I'm wary of his recognizability given the White House framing him as they have. I'd really like to strike back at Nathan Petrelli in kind, but the timing is bad. The best way only encourages Humanis First." That fact has her scowling. "It stinks beyond description that they aren't far off. There has been a takeover of the government, and a Gestapo of Evolved people is about to form."

Rather than speak of Abby, however, she's heading for the room where security camera footage is kept. She can certainly look for the last time she was seen in or around the building.

Elisabeth blinks and stares at Cat. "Oh God…. what have I done?" She pulls out her cell phone and sends a brief text message while she stands with Cat.

Abby, owe you apologies and will make them in person. Still secure? Seen Hiro? —Liz

Confusion again, as Cat enters the room with footage and pulls up recent footage showing her leaving. And she blinks. "What the? First she's blonde, then she's redhead, and now her hair is blue? She's far, far too young to look like elderly ladies at church, Elisabeth." Her head shakes a few times, to try clearing that image, and returns to another question. "What d'you mean, what have you done?"

Elisabeth looks up, surprised. "She's here? Shit…." Elisabeth turns and heads toward Cat's door — and Abby's apartment. She doesn't stop until she's knocking on Abby's door.

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