Memories of the Dead


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Scene Title Memories of the Dead
Synopsis Refrain performs better than its reputation states. The memories of Brian Fulk stir from the grave.
Date August 6, 2009

New York Public Library

Once upon a time, the New York Public Library was one of the most important libraries in America. The system, of which this branch was the center, was among the foremost lending libraries /and/ research libraries in the world.

The bomb changed that, as it changed so much else.

By virtue of distance, the library building was not demolished entirely, like so many others north of it; however, the walls on its northern side have been badly damaged, and their stability is suspect. The interior is a shambles, tattered books strewn about the chambers and halls, many shelves pulled over. Some have even been pulled apart; piles of char in some corners suggest some of their pieces, as well as some of the books, have been used to fuel fires for people who sought shelter here in the past.

In the two years since the bomb, the library — despite being one of the icons of New York City — has been left to decay. The wind whistles through shattered windows, broken by either the blast-front or subsequent vandals, carrying dust and debris in with it. Rats, cats, and stray dogs often seek shelter within its walls, especially on cold nights. Between the fear of radiation and the lack of funds, recovery of the library is on indefinite hiatus; this place, too, has been forgotten.

Need to talk to u, read the text message sent over to the replicator's phone, priority issues just come up

Richard Cardinal is not the most literate of phone texters. He's not terribly great with computers, either. He's out in the lobby at the moment, perched on the steps with his knees up a bit, arms resting atop them and a paperback novel from the stacks in hands, burnt-edged pages being flipped through slowly.

"It takes like three extra seconds to type a y and an o. I hate when people text the letter u. And then you go spell big words like priority."

It's his initial complant when Brian comes waltzing into the library. He's dressed in his usual suit, though he lets the aviators remain on his face rather than take them off. Maybe he just wants to be one of those douchebags who walks around with sunglasses constantly, or maybe it's just too much effort to take them off. Whatever the case, glasses remain. His dress shoe flies out to kick a burnt book to the side for no reason. The book slaps against the wall, dust exploding off of it into the air. "So. You knock over the Slush-o booth?" Brian asks, tucking his hands into his pockets.

"There's no easy way to abbreviate 'priority'."

The paperback's tossed off to land on the steps, and Cardinal reaches out to grasp hold of the rail; hauling himself to his feet, he brushes some dust off his ass before stepping down and over. He's dressed casually for him, black shirt, black jeans, no jacket today. Maybe it was too hot. A pair of oakleys adorns his own face, though more for biological than douchebag reasons. "Yeah. We found a string map of events, an' some shit he wrote. Did some investigating about it already, none've the news good."

"Could have used the word serious instead. It sounds like priority. And sounds less like we're fucking conspirators to any government asshole who goes through our records." Brian mutters. "S R S."

Walking over to the steps, Brian starts to climb them. He's listening, that much is indicated by the inclination of his head. Though he listens with his back turned to the man. Once he reaches a satisfactory level of height, Brian places his hands on the railing. Lifitng himself up he goes to sit on the rail. Then releases and slides down swiftly and quietly. Sliding to the bottom, his feet scamper quickly to keep him upright once his descent is complete. "So? What does that mean? What do we have to do?"

"It was mapping out a series of events leading up to a… whole lot of deaths," explains Cardinal as he paces to the other side of the stairs, leaning up against the heavy curve of the rail's edge to watch the other man slide with a wryly amused expression— one that passes quickly due to the serious nature of the subject. Arms fold across his chest, chin lifting up in a bit of a nod, "The events in question were earthquakes. Spaced out from one coast to the other, ending here. In the safety deposit box, there was a gun— Liz tracked it to an old murder-suicide case, guy shot his son and wife, then himself. Son survived." A pause, "He's a third tier earthmover."

Brian climbs back up the stairs, the iminent doom not really seeming to bother him all that much yet. "When is that not the case in our crazy-ass lives?" Setting himself on the rail he goes to slide down it one more time. Though this time when he lands, he trips a little bit. The effect of the words 'third tier earthmover' on his feet. Casting a look at Cardinal, Brian stares for a long moment. "A third tier earthmover." His hands clench for a moment.

"Let me guess, he doesn't care a whole lot about causing damage. He's crazy, and he's homeless." Brian gives Cardinal a flat look. "I saw his work the other night. I assume it's the same person. How many third tier earthmovers with plans, intentional or not, to kill a lot of people, can there be?" He takes a breath after that long explanation. "I had a chance to shoot him. To fucking kill him. But I didn't take it because Adam was there, didn't want to blow my cover." Brian suddenly seems very deflated. Grabbing the rail, he collapses into a sitting position on the stairs. For a moment he stares at the ground in front of him.


"…wait, wait…" A push off from the rail, and Cardinal's backbone straightens as he takes a hesitant step closer to the other man, one hand held out in a questioning sort of gesture, "…you've seen him? The name's Norman White— I haven't gotten a picture yet, but he's a fuckin' loon, thinks he's been 'chosen' or something, and he just busted his way out've a psychiatric hospital. Where'd you see him?"

If Brian was a pyrokinetic, the library would be burning once again to ash. But as it is the only fire set here is his rage. The pure anger coming off in his voice practically throws books off shelfs. But after a moment he seems to calm. But just because he isn't yelling doesn't mean he isn't pissed. "God damnit fuck." Gripping the rail he goes to stand. "Yeah, I fuckin' saw him, Richard. He took out a few cars, a cop, and a lady with the side of a god damn wall. I took out my gun to do him in.. But I hesitated when I saw Adam trying to talk to him." His fist clenches and then he lets out a full swing at the rail. The dull thud of bone and flesh connecting against metal rings out, before Brian brings the fist back and does it again. Apparently the pain isn't enough to stop him. "Fucking Adam. Ruins fucking everything. That's twice I could have helped people that he fucked things up." His voice is low, sounding more like a growl.

"It was down in Chelsea. He walked through a fucking wall to get away from the cops. Of course, Adam saw power and got all tingly in his pants and went after him. I.. Damnit." His voice lows and calms down before, once again. "Damnit!" Another full force swing at the rail.

"Chelsea… motherfucker, I saw that on the news," Cardinal's jaw tightens at the other man's words, though he doesn't work to stop his assault on innocent inanimate objects— perhaps he sympathizes. Adam is, after all, an entirely frustrating creature in even the most charitable man's estimation. He reaches into his jacket, fingers curling about a phone and pulling it out. It's snapped open, and as the rail's aged wood cracks a bit under Brian's fist, he starts to tap in a text message. Not looking up, he mutters lowly, "We'll deal with him in time, Brian, trust me on that one. He's on the list…"

"This White fucker better not kill anymore people. I could have fucking ended it right there. But I took my cover as more important. God damnit." A final crack against the wood, sends splinters of wood flying. Pulling back his fist, Brian won't allow himself to nurse his very painful fist. It's his punishment. Blood trickles down his fingers as he turns his back from the railing. "I guess this means I need to get in closer with Adam. If he's going to be getting cozy with Norman White. Possibly. Do you have any word on the founders, or do I need to go find them myself? We got to move fast Dickie, before he kills them all without me." Brian's lips thin. A drop of blood drips off of his index finger onto the ground. "Who are you texting?"

"Liz." A glance up from the phone, "There were cops dead in the Chelsea thing. She can keep an ear and an eye out in the investigation for this guy… did he say anything that you remember, anything that stood out?" Cardinal pauses, then, lips pursing in a thin line before he nods once, curtly, "I can give you Victoria Pratt's address. She invented the Shanti virus, from what they tell me. Don't tell Liz I did, she'd be pissed."

"I was down the street. I couldn't hear them." Brian waves his hand dismissively. "I was chasing this drug dealer. Oh yeah. Wanted to show you this." Reaching into his coat pocket a syringe is retrieved. Though there's something very unique about this syringe. It's glowing blue. "Take a look at this." It's offered to Cardinal.

"Victoria Pratt. Good, where is she? I'll need to get to her soon and hope I can offer her to Adam before he finds her himself."

"Maine," Cardinal replies distractedly as he reaches over for the syringe, raising it up a bit and frowning at the luminous fluid within, "I've got it written down in the office, I'll get it for you before you leave— what the fuck is this? It's glowing for Christ's sake."

"Newest drug on the market." Brian says blandly. "Oh really, Dickie? Is it glowing? That's crazy! I hadn't noticed." It's all said in a very flat and dry tone. "Called Refrain. I can't tell who's distributing it yet. But it's potent and I'm thinking it has something to do with Evolved shit, Dickie, I mean. It glows." Brian affirms, spreading his hands out.

"I don't know what it does. Honestly."

"Everyone's a comedian," mutters Cardinal under his breath, turning the syringe over once in his hand as he frowns down at it. The last time there was a syringe or a hypo in his hand, it wasn't the most pleasant moment of his life - a triumph, if a pyrrhic one, but not pleasant. "I think I should let the doc take a look at this, see if he can figure out what th'fuck it is."

"I have two more." Brian confesses, "And I accidentally took the dealers money, too. Serves him right for dealing drugs to kids, right?" Frowning down at his bloody hand he glances to Cardinal. "You have like a paper towel or something?" Taking a step forward he peers at the blue syringe for a long moment.

"Maybe we should try it." He suggests, very quietly.

There's just a shrug, from Cardinal. He's not the most moral of folks, but he's not fond of those who'd prey on kids, either. "Try the bathroom," he murmurs in response to the question for a paper towel, then the latter hits him and he glances up, brows arching over his shades.

"You can if you want."

"To see what it does." Brian explains as he takes a few steps forward. He puts his hand out, gesturing for Cardinal to hand him back the syringe. "If it hurts me or has ill affect, I can just reabsorb this body. Then we can see what this is. It's obviously not a normal drug." He holds his hand out still, blood dropping from it. Drip, drip. "I won't use all of it. You can give the rest to the doc."

Hey, it's his body… well, one of them. The drug's handed back over carefully, and Cardinal's hand drops back to his side, lips pursing in a bit of a frown as he looks at the syringe, then the replicator's face. "If you drop dead or anything," he says, perhaps the strangest sentence he'll utter in a while, "Just give me a call after."

"My cell phone is on this body. I'll call it." Brian offers with a reassuring smile as his hand closes in on the syringe. He examines it closely before he steps back to the stairs. Going to take a seat he sets the syringe down. Taking off his suit jacket he tosses it to the side then rolls up his sleeve.

"I've never done any drugs." He admits. "How are you supposed to do it? Just stab it in a veiny place? Or do I need one of those leather strap thingies. Like in the movies where they bite the strap." Brian explains picking back up the syringe. He eyes his arm for a moment. Hmm.

"Jesus Christ." Cardinal rolls his eyes, reaching down to unbuckle his belt and drag it from the loops with a hiss of leather against denim, "Have you never— nevermind, of course you haven't. Roll your fuckin' sleeve up and hold your arm out."

Rolling his sleeve back he holds out his arm, then simply offers up the syringe. "Here, you do it." He mutters, taking his now free hand to grip the rail as if expecting it to completely rack his body or something dramatic like that. "Remember. Don't use all of it." And with that his eyes close mostly, like a dog bracing from getting hit by its master.

The leather's wrapped about the man's upper arm, drawn taut - uncomfortably so - to restrict bloodflow. As he works, Cardinal observes in rather dry tones, "I don't know the dosage of this shit at all, so if you fuckin' OD, it's not my fault." He pauses after smacking the underside of his arm a few times, holding the syringe and glancing at the man's face, "Do your replicants dissolve or something, or should I open up a storeroom to toss your bodies?"

He doesn't wait for an answer. Instead, the needle slides deftly into a vein, and the plunger's depressed perhaps half-way.

"Bodies remain." Brian murmurs, sounding sad at that fact. "We probably should have done a wee bit more research before we made this decision. I'm now realizing." He says, as the needle is placed into his arm. His eyes close tightly, plunging his world into darkness. He waits, wetting his lips his features grow concerned for a moment before finally he shaked his head. "It's not working." He says and then opens his eyes.

And his eyes are opened to reveal Old Lucy's. His eyes pull down to his clothes, showing them that he's wearing something completely different. But then something catches his attention, his eyes flick up revealing a woman on hands and knees on the bar. Stunningly beautiful. "Izzy, Isabelle Ashford." Comes the woman's answer to a question he doesn't remember asking. But before he knows it the woman is in his lap, lips going to his neck. "I have a room upstairs…"

A cough is let out, "Dickie I-ah.."

His feet landed firmly in the back of the truck his hands ushering the kids back. A glance over his shoulder indicates that yes, they finished the job. Vanguard has been stopped, and the truck is ushering him, Owen and the rescued children through the snow. A look down to the boy at his feet, and Brian quickly goes to one knee. Shock fills him as he finds a hole in the boy's shirt, and then finds a flattened bullet. His eyes widen, "What's your name?"


"This is…" A heavy exhale

"What's your name?" His voice echoes through his mind, as the scenery becomes less vivid. Less solid. Less real.

"Kameron Jackson."

The name floats through his head as the library slowly creeps back into his vision, shaky at first as if it was just another memory. His jaw is slack, eyes wide. He wets his lips. It feels like he's been out for hours, one memory after another. As real and as solid and vivid as the next.

"Whoa there…" A flicker of real concern in Cardinal's voice as the drug kicks in, and the man starts to react; one hand reaching out to grasp his shoulder, weight present to ensure he doesn't fall down, murmuring in a forcibly calm, reassuring voice as he tries to help the other man down to sit, "…careful, careful. Ride it through…"

Crumpling on the stairs Brian brings a hand to his head, looking mildly confused though a dopey smile climbs up his lips. His eyes narrow as he notices something. The blood on his hand is still wet. "How.. How long was I out?" He asks in a confused manner, glancing up at Cardinal.

"Just a couple've minutes," Cardinal replies, crouching down beside the other man, his brow furrowing a little and head tilting just a bit to one side, "What'd it do…?"

"Isabelle Ashford." Brian says dumbly after a moment. "That's the girl.. the girl you said that died?" His voice is slightly high pitched, as if cracking. "She.." His eyes start to water. "We.." The memories were so vivid. He could feel her. Smell her. The crash though, is not so pleasant. "I liked her." He admits, as if realizing it himself. He looks like he might start to cry.

"Izzy…?" The line of Cardinal's brow furrows a bit over the edge of his shades, "Yeah, that's… she was my— she was a friend." He draws back a little, looking at Brian with a confused expression, one hand still resting on his shoulder, "Wait, you— never met her, you said…"

"I haven't." Brian answers plainly. Sounding a tad confused about that. His hand raises up to his forehead. "But I clearly remember making out with her at Old Lucy's. And going up to her room and.." He waves his hand, still a little wide eyed. "I remember other things. Other things that make me.. Happy. Things I don't remember. But I.." He seems very confused by all this.

The faintest of smiles twitches briefly to Cardinal's lips, though it's a wistful one— sad remembrance of a former lover. "Yeah," he murmurs, "That sounds like Izzy. And…" The smile fades, as he asks confusedly, "So— I mean— the drug made you remember shit that Fulk did?"

"I don't know. I'm just saying.. I just had an amazing experience. Hours of.. I don't know how else to say it-joy. And you say it was a couple minutes." Brian says that as if assuming Cardinal is lying. "I guess it went past my memory wipe." He says softly, examining his bloody hand closely. "I remembered things that I shouldn't." He glances at the syringe in Cardinal's hand. "I'm telling you one thing, Dickie. That is some good shit. Maybe I should use the rest." He motions for the rest of the syringe.

"I don't think so." The syringe is tucked - carefully - into Cardinal's hand as he pushes back and up, head shaking a little, "Not until we get this shit analysed, man. If it can get past your wipe, though…" He frowns a little in thought, "I mean— doesn't that mean it's reversible? You could remember everything, potentially."

"Well, there's only one way to find out, right?" Brian asks, his hand remains out. "Let me try it." Winters commands, going to stand up. He takes a few steps towards the other man, his gray eyes locked on the hand of the man with the glowing blue syringe. "We can get more for it to be analysed." Winters explains, waiting a tad impatiently he frowns deeply. "Come on."

"Brian." Cardinal's voice is sharp, suddenly, body turning a bit to slide that hand away as the other gesture towards him, "We're experimenting with some weird-ass glowing drug, and the first thing you do is demand th'rest of it? You seriously expect me to hand it over?" A pause, "I've got no way of knowing if you just want to find out, or if it's instantly psychologically addicting."

His brows narrow as he stares at Cardinal. His fists clench for a moment looking like he might actually attack the other man. "It is mine." He points out, staring down at the syringe. "I gave it to you. So give it back, Dickie." He growls.

"If it's on the streets," Cardinal replies tightly, his stance shifting ever so slightly into a defensive one, brows drawing together, "We can get you more of it. If it's not going t'fuck you up just by taking it. Or're you going to fuckin' tackle me over some drugs, for Christ's sake, Brian?"

"Dickie." Brian says levelly. Standing for a moment, he wets his lips once again. "That is mine."

And with that the doors to the library open abruptly. And in comes Brian. A Brian dressed in a pair of jeans and a white button up shirt. He storms in, past Cardinal, his hand snapping up at Suit Brian. As soon as their is skin contact the drugged up Brian instantly vanishes, his clothes falling in a heap on the ground. Letting his hand fall to his side, he peers down at the clothes. "Sorry. Dickie." He murmurs. "Apparently it's very addictive."

As the doors swing wide, Cardinal slants a sharp look over… and then he relaxes, dropping back a step and rubbing one hand against his brow. "I was about to fuckin' shoot you just to calm your ass down," he says dryly, glancing at the clothes, then back up to the other Brian with a bemused expression, "So, uh. Did you see whatever he saw?"

"Very vivid memories." Brian explains. "As if it's actually happening. Real." Winters looks down at the clothes, shaking his head. "Don't take any." Brian advises. "It works that fast." He folds his arms over his chest for a moment. "Anyway, get me that address. I should get going."

"Not planning on it." A tight shake of Cardinal's head, and he steps free of the stairs with a glance back to the pile of clothes— shaking his head again as he heads for the doors, "I'll let you know what I can find out about it. Spread the word about White, too. We need to find the sonuvabitch."

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