Lover's Spat


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barazani_icon.gif lou_icon.gif

Scene Title Lover's Spat
Synopsis Remi and Zachery meet in an elevator. Chaos follows.
Date June 4, 2019

Raytech NYCSZ Branch Office - Elevator

"You little shit."

Raytech hallways are not necessarily known for their quietude, but the elevators are usually free of this sort of tomfoolery.

Not today.

One of the building's elevators is rendered functionally out of order for the moment, purely on account of a… strange scene being acted out in between its doors. Zachery Miller stands outstretched, arms up, both hands clamped against the bottom of a bucket that is pressed tightly against the top of the doorway out of the elevator. The doors do not attempt to close, their sensors more than advanced enough to register an obstacle in their projected paths, though they do ring out a little DING noise designed to notify the user of human error.

Which Zachery, apparently, does not care about. "I told you I was going to get you, didn't I? And here we are." He is DEFIANT. And pretty pleased with himself.

To this bucket. Throwing a brief glance sideways as he's starting to realise that this position he's in is maybe not one he can keep up forever.


Another factor that may prevent Zachery from holding his position comes in the form of a familiar-looking young woman, who is making her way from Richard’s office. She wears a sharp-looking tan pinstripe suit, her hair pulled into a severe-looking bun, and a leather messenger bag/briefcase combo is slung over her shoulder, filled with professional papers. She seems a bit far off today.

The one-eyed man and his conversation with…a bucket…pulls her attention from the matters at hand to the outside world — probably for the best, really. She pauses, managing to keep herself from looking too judgemental by replacing the look of amused confusion with a more neutral raising of one eyebrow.

Last time they met, Remi didn’t have her ability. This time, she does, and curiosity prompts her to reach out with said ability, turning the ‘volume’ up on Zachery’s surface thoughts. “What on earth do you have in the bucket?”

Oh, fuck off, Zachery thinks.

"Oh hi," Zachery says. Cheerily, albeit forced, though he doesn't manage to tear his gaze away from the bucket just yet. He continues in a light, airy sort of voice to say, "Don't - ah - don't worry about it. Did you need the elevator? Let me just…" Grimly, unspoken, continues a barrage of fuck shit fuck fuck how in the bloody shitting fuck do I… fffucking hell.

He presses his palms harder against the bucket still, moving it sideways until it's where it meets the top of the door that so desperately wants to slide closed.


'Ding' right the fuck back at you.

He breathes in, waits a moment, then flips the bucket 90 degrees, so that its opening is now on the metal that runs flush with the side of the door. Something inside of the bucket SCRAMBLES at the brief chance to escape with a tink-a-tink scratch on metal, but is successfully held within its prison.

Big blue eyes flutter a bit as Remi watches the antics of the fellow, that amused expression still planted across her features. “Is there a rat in there or something?” She raises her brows a bit, stepping around the man with a concerned look on her face.

To her credit, she doesn’t seem too worried about whatever critter he has trapped within the bucket. Rats don’t scare her — they were a fact of life where she’s from. Not that he knows where she’s from — that information was left on the other side of the door to Richard’s office.

“Do you need some help with that?” She leans a little closer, though she does mostly keep to bubble space standards — all while amusedly listening in on Zachery’s frantic thoughts.

"I'm actually not sure what it is yet," Zachery answers, a little distractedly. "But decidedly not a rat." The little robot shit is, however, going to stop fucking following me around. "I'll just be a second, promise."

As Zachery is sliding the bucket slooowly down toward the floor - the way someone might slide a cup across a piece of paper while trying to make sure the spider underneath doesn't get its legs snatched under the rim - something in Remi's voice… rings a little too familiar.

He casts a look and a tight, fake, Office Smile to the side, at Remi, palms still pressed flat against the bucket… and freezes, real and fake eye both narrowing in a twitch. Oh. "… We've met, haven't we?" Where? What's her name? Fuck, something… French. Laura? That's not fucking French, is it. LllllLLllsomething. Fuck. Or was it something with an A?

Ah, a robot. Makes sense, a robot running around in Raytech headquarters. “Is it a robot?” She raises her brows a bit, leaning a little closer to the bucket. “If it’s a robot, I’m not sure Mr. Ray would want it under a bucket,” she helpfully points out.

She resists that delightful urge to answer his thoughts, instead smiling a bit more at his internal rambling. This one’s amusing to listen to — she’ll be sure to tune in on him if she finds him in a crowd.

Instead, she offers the man a small grin. “We have met, yes. I enjoyed a chili cheese dog to an embarrassing degree in front of you.” Amusement sparkling in her eyes, she reaches into her bag, pulling out an empty clipboard, which she offers out to the man with the bucket. “I’m awful with names, though, and I’m afraid I was too busy enjoying my food to remember yours.” An easy out for the man with the bucket.

"Oh, don't worry. I'm taking this thing right up to Mr. Ray." There's something vindictively resolute about the way he says this, fingers rapping on the bucket's surface. While Remi is talking, a sudden string of thoughts peels the excuse for a smile off of his face.

… I wonder if he knows, though. I wonder if everyone knows. Do they do this to everyone, or just me? Maybe this is why everyone's been so nice. Why everything's been so easy. Why I'm here in the… focus, focus.

"— Sorry, I… miles away." He looks back up again, her words registering somewhat belatedly as readjusts to hold the bucket with one hand while his other reaches to accept the clipboard without hesitation. Perfect. Chili cheese dog… right - diner. Talk of prison, shouldn't have let that slip to a stranger, the mug, did I break that in the end? Something about a new business on a boat. She'd been gone a while. What did I say, sssshit, Miss… "Amelie Laurent!" Finally, thoughts and speech coincide with the recollection of the name given.

Unfortunately, he's so pleased with having solved this little puzzle that the bucket is able to be nudged by whatever is inside of it, and it slips from his grasp. ShitshitSHIT. Despite an attempt to grab it, the bucket falls and lands sideways. Out a little ways into the hall rolls a round… robot… eyeball? Spindly legs SPRING out from its sides, and it rises to turn what looks to be a lens on Remi and Zachery both.

The latter seems to have frozen, clipboard rising slowly in his hand while he stares right back with the one eyeball of his own, hard. Come on, stay. I'm going to take your everything apart as slowly as I possibly fucking can, you fucking fuck. Stay.

It’s probably fortunate for Remi that Zachery is so distracted by various factors, because that thought process piques the telepath’s interests. He probably won’t notice the vague reaction she has to what’s going through his brain — why would he? He has no reason to worry about his thoughts around her. Her eyes narrow for the tiniest of a split second, her head moving slightly to the side as she regards the man.

Impulsive and happy to take advantage of the situation, Remi simply turns a smile and a small wink to the eyeball…spider…thing. It’s Raytech, so there’s probably some purpose to the object’s existence.

Then, she suddenly turns, reaching out…and wrapping her arms around Zachery in a hug. The hug isn’t really the most important part of this gesture — no, the important part is her bare hand, laid gently on the back of the man’s neck.

He only has a split second to really respond, before something happens. Suddenly, it’s like a wall has been knocked down in his brain, and like some terrifying and ominous Kool-Aid man, the telepath embracing him has made a rather abrupt entrance into mind. He can feel her, and he can feel the fact that their minds are one now.

In the fringes of his mind, he can hear static, all around — muffled voices that he can’t quite make out, as if each mind is a small radio with the volume turned down to nothing. But really, the most noticeable part of all of this is the powerful telepath that has suddenly decided that it would be fun to go spelunking in his mind in an elevator in Raytech. So why are you here, Zachery?

All at once, the little robot now taking its chance to skitter down the hallway and around a corner is forgotten completely.

The hug was unexpected, what followed even moreso. There's a reflexive jerk of Zachery's shoulders and hands moving upward, and the clipboard falls to the ground. Confusion knits his brow, followed shortly by a mix of emotions - fear threads its way through but it's something else that puts the sneer on his face a moment later.

It is disgust.

Once the voices quiet, and he's able to manage a good guess of exactly what's going on, it sends a ripple through him that seems to have all of his muscles tense in turn. But then he just… breathes. Lets his shoulders drop back down. The sneer still on his face, his eye stares blankly off at nothing.

What should become immediately clear is that his mind is racing, but that this is… apparently its normal state. Less like he's trying to think of something in particular and more like a cornered animal, ready to claw desperately at anything that might come near. Whether it will achieve something or not.

When his answer finally comes, it does so in an echo that comes partially through gritted teeth, partially through thought. "I work here." Then, added in a hiss, "What about you."

Remi experiences… more, instantly. Information that relays the way her fingertips lie against his neck, the beating of her own heart filtered back at her in pulses, blood flowing through veins. Tiny fractures long healed, minute little scars, birthmarks everything. Like a living, almost-tangible map Remi may not know how to read, but Zachery lets it overtake as much of his mind as he can.

Her words don’t come through in her voice — they play in Zachery’s mind, instead, as the looming presence of the telepath reaches her tendrils into the man’s brain. Me? there’s a note of amusement that billows out from her half of their linked minds. Oh, I’m just an interdimensional traveller from a ruined world.

Suddenly, his mind is overtaken by memories — New York City, under water. The world, under water. The land that remained uninhabitable, the only way to live was the community carved out in the old skeletons of skyscrapers that didn’t fall when the floods came. The world was cold and wet, and despair was a common thing among its survivor. Boats were the only thing that mattered, where Remi comes from.

Just as quickly as the memories flash by, they’re gone again. But that’s not really important. It’s certainly not a detail you’ll remember. Then, the telepath’s mind slowly starts to ‘wade in’ to Zachery’s mind, reaching out toward his memories. What are you afraid that they know? I’ll find out eventually, you know. How much I have to tear through your private life is up to you.

To the security cameras, it just looks like the two are sharing rather tense embrace.

Zachery's focus slips from what he's able to pull into his mind by himself, the memories plucked from Remi's mind proving to be much more gripping all too quickly.

Interdimensional? What do you… mean. What is this. In comparison to hers, his presence seems to shrink back as much as it's able to.

Not that it helps him. When the focus shifts to him, it's a much less stable affair - memories flicker in and out like pages.

His job interview with Richard, just over a month ago, Zachery pressing his knuckles to his palm somewhat uncomfortably; a field, Yi-Min, his hand reaching for her throat before she almost immediately reaches up and bends his fingers the wrong way with a sickening crackle of bone; his office - his one-room 'home' - a bedsheet laid across a sofa made into makeshift bed. Recent memories, all of them. I don't know what you want from me.

Although. Vaguer images spring to mind, warped in the way memories generally are not. Remi's head and shoulders, next to Richard's, silhouetted in front of a monitor. They're handling the Spyball that got away just moments ago, plugging it into a feed that causes the monitor to spring to life. It shows Zachery, eating lunch. Riveting, clearly. Also incorrect in its assumption that that little robot is Richard's in the first place.

Yes, interdimensional. If speaking into one’s mind had a tone, Remi’s would be the same tone that a teacher uses with a young child. In my world, the bad guys won when they nuked the ice caps. The floods came and washed everything away, and none of this ever existed. Again, her own memories flit past — the tiny cabin of a small sailboat, the ruins of civilzation, ransacked and destroyed. A huge, neverending storm looming on the horizon, as seen from the deck of that small sailboat. But again, that isn’t important.

The intruder to Zachery’s mind turns toward those recent memories, sifting through them like one might go through a pile of old junk mail. The imagined scenario of her and Richard watching him over the monitors gives her pause; her amusement is almost palpable. Oh, you’re so paranoid it’s adorable. Bless your little heart.

And then, she slips below the surface of recent memories, digging deeper. There has to be more — this guy is too shifty for there not to be. Let’s see what you have to hide, Dr. Miller.

There's something in Zachery's posture that relaxes a little every time the memories that aren't his pop up, and a tenseness that returns every time they fade again.

His eye remains largely unfocused, the rest of his too busy processing what the fuck is going on. His hands, still sort of hovering, seem to reach halfway toward one of Remi's arms at the word 'adorable', but then… she pries again, and he balls his hand into a fist.

It's not… I'm not…

There's a flash of… metal bars. Prison, his nose bloodied, another inmate's too. They're both pulled away from each other almost immediately, hardly anything worth hiding. Least of all from this place.

There's nothing here.

Things seem to move quicker now. Perhaps it's the agitation, the quickening of breath, that sneer that flares back up with a vengeance. Images of the civil war, keeping moderately safe out on the street, then in haphazard triage situations.

An office. A blank stare at a PC. Mostly at the time in the corner.

I'm not hiding anything…

A morgue. Paperwork. Two eyes, staring hard from below dark eyebrows. A cadaver, on a big, flat metal table, the top of its skull having been severed from the rest of the head in a straight line across.

In the now and here, Zachery suddenly moves backwards. Away, instinct rolling back his shoulders as he takes advantage of their proximity to headbutt Remi in the face, full force.

Too cocky. She knew she was being too cocky, taking way too much time and talking too much. Hubris always was one of her downfalls.

DING. The doors slide close right as Zachery headbutts the redhead, sealing shut as it prepares to take its passengers to their destination.

For just a moment, the link is severed as Remi stumbles back, her back pushed up against the elevator doors, her nose suddenly bloody. It’s in this moment, confused and fresh from being ripped out of Zachery’s mind by lack of physical contact, that something new happens.

The woman’s eyes suddenly glow pinkish-white. That’s a new thing that has never happened to her before. And then, Remi’s ability instinctively lashes out on her behalf, and Zachery…well, while there’s no actual physical damage being done, Zachery’s senses go into overload all of a sudden.

Remi, leaning against the door with her hand to her bleeding nose, stares wide-eyed at Zachery, surprised by this development; she doesn’t leave him room to react to this new thing that is happening, suddenly rushing at him and attempting to put him in a headlock, with a side of choke hold.

Any sense of victory Zachery gets is short lived, as the sensory overload instantly causes him to reach up to clamp his forearms to his head while yelling, "FffuUCK!" It's mostly anger, though something else paints his voice with something a little closer to desperation. He drags a palm over his good eye, adding, "Can people fucking STOP — "

And then he finds himself rushed at, his arms being pulled away from where they were by virtue of a third being curled around his neck, turning the end of his sentence into, " — hhgrkh."

Another noise follows as he instinctively reaches to try and pull the arm off at a disadvantage. The noise may well be a strangled laugh, even if his panicked expression doesn't seem to share in the merriment.

And she’s there in his brain again, this time much more hurried in what she’s doing. As he paws at her arm that she’s got clenched around his neck, one hand clenched to her other arm that slides from under his arm and to the back of his neck. She’s really not trying to hurt him, she’s just trying to make him…stop struggling.

Once that bit of focus is shifted, she sets to work with her main goal. I know you’re hiding something, do you really want me to knock you out to find it? I might even keep your secret if you just show me. She pushes his neck a little harder against her arm. But she’s also not waiting for him to be knocked out — she’s hastily erecting a nice little barrier around their interaction so he hopefully won’t remember this. Mostly, so he won’t remember the thing she told/showed him that she wasn’t supposed to tell him, about where she’s from.

If she does end up knocking the poor guy out, then she’ll do her digging. Lesson learned. For now, though, she’s bleeding all over the back of Zachery’s head as the elevator descends toward the lobby.

Unknown to the pair in the elevator, their antics haven’t gone unnoticed. It's all thanks to a carefully hidden camera. So while they are beating each other up, Security has been rather busy getting ready for their imminent arrival in the lobby. Which is happening right about…


“Do it, Lou.” Is growled into a radio by Babar Barazani, Raytech’s acting Chief of Security.

Inside the elevator, the lights go out and the interior of the elevator takes on an eerie red glow. Uh oh. In the small enclosed space, the distinct sound of metal against metal is loud.

Remi and Zachery will quickly discover the doors will not open. They’re trapped.

They only get a moment to think about their situation before an ear splitting sound shrieks, assaulting their senses. The klaxon alarm can be heard even in the lobby, where Bob stands with lips pressed tight. He lets them stew in that while everyone gets into position.

With someone else's blood trickling down the back and side of his head, the look of panic on Zachery's face momentarily increases as the lights change, and the klaxon makes him grit his teeth and dig his nails into the fabric of Remi's sleeve. But only for a few seconds, before he just… brings his weight down, slowly sinks down onto his knees, and lets his arms drop.

Whatever's going to happen, he's done.

Remi was going to try and wipe his memory of this incident, but then he had to go and get violent with her. She was going to try and knock him out so she could properly wipe his brain of the secrets she’s told him, but then those fucking klaxons start blaring.

Unfortunately for Zachery, the link is still there, and the klaxons make focusing on blocking out the voices nigh impossible. So he gets the added bonus of those muffled, staticky voices in the periphery turning into loud shouting voices, and his ‘mental’ ears have never heard this before.

She’s not trying to give him a parting shot, but the headache he’ll have for a while after this is a small victory for the telepath, who slumps against him and covers her ears as best as she can. She’s pretty well done, too.

Perhaps she can try to have a civil conversation with him after this.

Employees who had read the company handbook would be aware of what measures were installed for their safety and security by former Security Chief Luther Bellamy. It was meant to protect from outside threats, but within the building, access could be given or taken away remotely.

Down in the security main control room, Lou presses a button that sets the elevator on lockdown status. Her fingers tap away at keys, deactivating the guest and numbered employee badges for Remi and Zachery.

The screech-ringing surround sound pouring from the hidden speakers within the elevator stops once she taps the release code. But. Only after several seconds of exposure. Enough time for the status change of the badges for the trapped pair. Once that's done, the front lobby automated security slides out from the ceiling lights and point towards the elevator doors.


The elevator lights come back on, and the doors slide open to reveal Bob and a three-man team in AEGIS armor and XLRAD Banshee pistols fanned out at a distance and waiting.

"You going to wait 'til I get there?" Over Bob's radio, Lou sounds amused, if dryly so.

"Speedy." Zachery rasps, deadpan, from his position down on the floor, offering very little other than a very, very slow raising of his hands, palms outward, and possibly the most tired grin he's ever had on his face. With everything going on inside of his head, too, his attention on Bob and his team is… unsteady.

“You want to see this in person? Hoof it. They so much as twitch I’m gonna fucking goo them.” Goo them?? Bob is at least willing to humor his partner in crime. His dark eyes fall on the Amelie and confused recognition settles in. It is one she’d see every time she steps through the lobby. He’s clearly suspicious of who she is. Though it isn’t his place to ask. “Actually, Lou. Stay there. Just in case….. You know.” She could possibly over the canons from there.

The radio is tucked on his belt and arms crossed as his focus goes to the pair in the elevator. He is irritated to be there. “Fighting in the elevators??” A look goes between the pair, “What the fuck? Oh, and I recommend that you don’t move.” He points up at the canons that were lowered from the ceiling with a finger. “You don’t want what is in those.”

‘Amelie’ is clearly in no condition to do much moving right now — she’s still draped over Zachery, wincing a bit at the full onslaught of the minds around her — and she’s still half-collapsed on the other man, her hand on the back of his neck (which means he is unfortunately hearing the thoughts of Bob and the three others, as well as all of his coworkers in her range). You’ve seen things. I’ve heard things. We both have something to hide, so I recommend we have a less violent chat outside of Raytech when they’re done. I don’t think you want me telling your boss what’s going through your head — he’s pretty likely to listen to my concerns.

Then, slowly, she raises her hands, sliding off of her opponent with a wince. Everything hurts right now. She ends up on her knees, hands up. “Lover’s spat,” she says with a glance toward Zachery.

Before they break skin contact, Zachery's mind is too busy filtering things out — unfamiliar with any of this, it's proving a hard enough thing to do that he doesn't manage a reply back before the telepath has pulled away. He's not getting up, nor moving his hands, which only made it halfway up before he just keeps them there.

It's unclear how much the words spoken he's catching, eyelids closing over real and fake eye both, brow knitting. Ow. In what is probably supposed to be a counter-argument, he says at a volume usually accompanying migraines, flatly, "… Literally couldn't even remember her name."

The flat look they both get says Bob doesn’t quite believe them, but he also doesn’t feel like drilling into to them for the truth. “That’s some fucked up shit.” Meaning they saw it all. However… “Fine. A lover's spat then.” He’ll play along this time. Arms unfold and Bob steps aside for the armed men.

“So here is what’s gonna happen. You listen.” The security chief looks between both of the elevator occupants. “You’re gonna be escorted out.” He looks at Zachery specifically and states blandly, “Both of you and your credentials will be suspended until my report is handed over to the Boss and he gives the okay.”

Bob stiffly motions to the guards to do their job and get them off campus. “I suggest you get some fuckin’ therapy.” He doesn’t even bother specifying what type. “Cause next time I catch either of you ‘arguin’’ in the elevator I’m just gonna fire the fuckin’ cannons.” One of the armored guards motion for both Amilie and Zachery to proceed them.

A few choice words in Arabic are uttered under his breath, before unclipping the radio and calling up Lou… “Not it.” In Bob speak that means, she gets to do the paperwork.

Already halfway to the front, Lou pauses in her tracks with the suggestion from Bob over the radio. Like hell she’d miss this! Her pace picks up until a door a bit further down the side of the lobby opens to admit Lou into the area… just in time for Bob to tell her on the radio that she’s it for this one.

“Damnit, Bob,” groans the security comm specialist, exhaling a huff as she winds down her hopes to simply watching the other guards help in hoisting ‘Amelie’ and Zachery up.

And Bob isn’t the only one to recognize the telepath, at least on a superficial level. But all the woman remarks on that is another ‘hm’ and a brow raised at her co-head of security. They’ll likely debate on it later.

But Lou strides closer to the pair being escorted away and out, particularly to hold her hand out and say, “I’ll need your entry badges.” No ‘please’ from her.

‘Amelie’ takes the hand up as assistance, pretty obviously in the midst of an awful headache; it’s probably from the headbutt and nosebleed. “That’s absolutely fair,” she points out to Bob’s explanation of what’s going to happen, removing her guest badge and handing it over without question. “If Mr. Ray would like to give me a call, I’ll gladly explain what happened.”

The pointed look she gives Zachery indicates that they should definitely have that chat she mentioned before that phone call happens. “Don’t worry, there won’t be any more fights in Raytech headquarters.” She’ll just jump him on the street or something. Asshole.

“You folks have a good day. Sorry for the inconvenience,” she murmurs, pinching the bridge of her nose as she’s escorted out.

The look escapes Zachery, his tired amusement having ebbed away to make room for something a little more absent - like he's mentally disengaged from the situation entirely to focus on just getting out through compliance. His attention turns only to what's ahead of him as he's escorted out, people stared through rather than at.

His entry badge is fished out of his pocket and — unceremoniously dropped on the floor, hand nearby or not. Take it or leave it.

“Oh, he might. I think he’s going to love that explanation,” Lou remarks wryly as she retrieves both deactivated badges. With a final nod to the other pair of guard escorts, she takes another look at Zachery’s badge and tucks both it and the visitor’s badge from Amelie into a pocket.

Once the pair are out of earshot and walking to the entry gates, Lou turn to Bob and half-chides, half-prods him, “Next time? It’s Goo time. And you get the paperwork.”

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