My Eyes and Ears


elisabeth_icon.gif simon_icon.gif

Scene Title My Eyes and Ears
Synopsis Elizabeth requests a meet with Simon regarding suspicious Homeland Security activity. In the end, the two form something of an alliance.
Date April 27, 2009

Staten Island Coast

The coast of Staten Island is as much of a presence as its inland, with rivers that invade right into its heart as well as cutting off the circulation of transport from the rest of New York City. The coastal regions reflect a lot of this borough's rural nature, with rough shores and plantlife, broken brick, and general abandonment. The harbors are left to the devices of those that freely come and go, a conspicuous lack of official presence - a number of them notably overrun by the developing crime syndicate, but there are still quite a few, particularly on the coasts nearest to Brooklyn and Manhattan, that are accessible to the lawful public.

Although Murdoch asked her ten days ago about Simon and Minea Dahl, Elisabeth hasn't been able to catch up with her former student — phone tag has been about the extent of their contact, until she finally left him a message that said, "Meet me. This is ridiculous, and the longer we play phone tag, the uglier it could get. I'll be on the beach below the lighthouse at 9pm." And thus Elisabeth hightails it out to Staten, a place where one does NOT want to be a cop who gets caught, and parks her tail on a rock just down the beach from the Lighthouse. She's wearing jeans that are just a hint too tight, a lined denim jacket, and her blonde hair is teased up and out a bit. She looks…. somewhat more 'local' than she would otherwise, just in case she gets spotted. Not like she's a known entity out here.

Simon didn't realize the urgency behind Elisabeth's calls until he heard her last voicemail. Ten days is a long time to play phone tag with someone, but the kid has been busy during this time, so he's hardly felt it pass by. As he walks down from the Lighthouse he spots his former teacher immediately. She's the only one around, not to mention a face he can recognize instantly. A wave is offered as he moves down the beach, feet stepping exactly where they need to in order to prevent the teen from tripping over rocks, branches, or other debris.

"Hey, Ms. Harrison. Sorry we couldn't meet earlier. What's up?" Simon stops a few feet away from Elisabeth and crosses his arms over his chest, inclining his head towards her in curiosity.

Looking up the beach, she sees him coming from quite a ways off. And she smiles as he approaches. It doesn't appear that he's in trouble — at least not with her. She's not giving him teacher face or cop face so much. Instead, Elisabeth gestures. "Take a load off. I need to ask you a couple of questions, and I don't want you to freak out on me, okay? I caught wind of something hinky and I want to make sure you're all right."

Simon gives a brisk nod and heads over to a smaller rock nearby. He settles down onto it and folds his legs up against his chest, arms wrapped around them. "I won't freak out," he says, and there's a good amount of surety in his voice. A lot of things have happened since he last talked to Elisabeth, and they have matured him more than he cares to admit.

"I'm fine, I guess. What did you pick up?" he asks, not wanting to go into certain topics without hearing what she has to say first.

Watching him thoughtfully, Elisabeth's reply is straight and to the point. "For a young man who wants to stay off Homeland Security's radar, you're not doing such a hot job," she tells him quietly. "A detective that I work with happened to be having drinks not too long ago out here with another couple of cops — please don't ask me why, cuz I think any cop who drinks on Staten must have a death wish right now — and he was privy to a relatively odd bet. A couple of people attempting to spook you into leaving a bar. Remember an incident even remotely like it?"

Well that was something the kid wasn't expecting to hear. It looks like it takes Simon off guard, causing him to blink, turn away, and lose himself in thought. "Um," he says after a moment of contemplation. "No, actually. I don't remember anything like that. If it happened a couple of weekends ago, though," Simon pauses for another moment before leaning in closer to Elizabeth, as if they might be heard by someone in the shadows, "Well, there was one night where I blacked out. My sister and I. You remember Mallory from school, right?"

Narrowing her eyes, Elisabeth slaps a bubble around them. The sounds of the water just vanish. Not that she thinks they're being monitored, but he looks really nervous. "What do you mean, you 'blacked out'?" she demands, her tone a cross between Ms. Harrison the teacher and a concerned friend. She does, indeed, remember the boy's sister. "And yes, this would have been a couple of weekends ago."

When the bubble goes up, Simon looks around, stunned at the loss of sound from the outside. "What happened?" he asks. He doesn't know anything about Elisabeth's power, but when his gaze lands on her, he figures it has something to do with it. So he doesn't wait for an answer. Instead, he gives one. "My sister and I woke up at the Lighthouse," he motions with one hand behind them. "We were outside. It felt like I drank a whole bottle of something. Mallory, too. Thing is, she doesn't drink, and I don't remember staying out late."

"I put a sound barrier around us, just in case — reflects all sound we make back in, reflects all other sounds away. So they can't listen with parabolic mikes," Elisabeth replies mildly. "The sound waves don't carry. All right…. so tell me this: Do you know an Officer Collins or a Minea Dahl or Minea Lancaster?"

Since the Company makes it a habit of wiping memories away like they're nothing but gnats, Simon's memory of Minea is only a fleeting one. When once he believed that she was stalking him, now he can't even remember her name. "No, they don't ring a bell. Why? Were they the ones trying to scare me off?" It's obvious to him that it's probably the case, so he continues. "Why would they want to do that? What's the real deal with Homeland Security, anyways?" A comment isn't made about the sound barrier. Simon is focusing now on what might be a major problem.

There's a long, slow nod, and Elisabeth looks out over the water. She swears rather creatively in her head for a long moment before finally replying. "Well, quite frankly, I don't have a fucking clue what they would want in you…. the detective who was with them got the impression that the Homeland agent was very interested in you. She and the officer left the bar shortly after you and your sister, and frankly? The fact that neither of you remembers what happened really disturbs me. So… I don't know what to do here, Simon. As far as I know, you don't have any information that could hurt anyone else…. and if you did before, it's probable that it's gone now. It could be just that you could have ID'd her, it could be that they know what your talent is and wanted you to do something for them…. I just have no way to know." She looks at him, her expression pensive. "So… the way I see it, you've got two options. Remain here, keep your eyes open, and call me if anything else wierd happens…. or go to ground, you and Mallory. I know some people who know some people who know some people — if you get my drift — who could get you the hell out of here."

"I know people, too. I could get us both out of here and up to Canada if I wanted to. To be honest, though, I don't want to go anywhere," Simon says, a little to himself and a little to Elisabeth. "I was running for a long time before I decided to come back here, and it's not better." The kid pauses a moment, clears hi throat, and focuses his gaze straight at Elisabeth. "Ms. Harrison, have you ever heard of something called The Company?" He figures if anyone would know, it would be her. She seems to know a lot.

Elisabeth doesn't drop his gaze. "Yes. The question is, how'd you come to know of it?"

Simon lets out a sigh and reaches up to rub his fingers against the side of his nose. All of this can really stress a kid out. "I met this guy the other day," he begins, dropping his hand and arm back down to hook it around his legs again. "His name was Adam and he talked about something called The Company. He talked about kidnapping and lost time and - " he pauses yet again and closes his eyes for a few seconds. When he opens them, he continues "I don't know it was weird. There are a lot of whack jobs on the island and I wouldn't have paid attention to him, except he was kind of weird. Now I know he knew what he was talking about."

Elisabeth leans her elbows on her knees, her feet spread for balance on the rock that she's sitting on, and clasps her hands together as she listens to him. Interesting… 'Adam' who knows about The Company can only be Adam Monroe, and she herself only really learned about him today. "Why was he talking to you about this kind of thing?" she asks.

"He, uh, was talking to this guy I know," Simon begins, "at the Angry Pelican. I went over to say hello real quick and apparently I was the topic of conversation. You're right," he says with a slight smirk on his face, "about me not laying low. I guess I'm just not good at it." He lifts his shoulders in a shrug. "And he asked me those weird questions and then he mentioned the Company. What is it?"

"The short version is that it's the black ops version of Homeland Security, from what I can gather. All the things nobody talks about, like disappearing people." Elisabeth nibbles on the edge of her lip, thoughtful. "It basically means that someone's interested in you, Simon. And I'm not entirely sure who or why. Let me ask you this, what exactly is it that you can do? And is Mallory Evolved as well?"

"Listen, lets get something straight right quick. Mallory is off limits. I won't talk about her if it'll put her in danger. If you want to ask her questions, we can go talk to her, but I just have to keep my mouth shut," Simon says, having learned mostly very recently the extent of Mallory's secrets. He doesn't want to let anything out, not even to Elizabeth. "Me, though? I'll tell you, because this Company sounds seriously screwed up." He tongue darts out to lick his drying lips for a moment. "I have, like, perfect aim. That's how I got onto the basketball team at school. It's how I beat people at darts and pool. It's how I can - probably hurt someone pretty bad if I have to."

Holding up her hand when he goes on the offensive, Elisabeth says quietly, "I highly recommend, Simon, that if you don't want to give away information, you learn the art of a poker face." Because his reaction just answered the question. Her gaze is sympathetic on him, though. "Yeah, I could see how they might want to recruit someone with a talent like yours," she comments. And then she shakes her head a little. "Shit, Simon. I don't have a clue how to help you with this one. If DHS — or the Company — already have their eyes and minions on you, and it sounds like they do, there's not a lot I can do except help you get out if you want it. Barring that… the best thing I can do is tell you to keep your eyes peeled, let me know if you see anything or hear anything that is remotely odd. I'd really hate to see you or Mallory be the next ones to vanish."

It's a flaw of Simon's, not being able to hide the truth, not being a very good liar. It's been pointed out to him time and time again, and it always draws him back to the defensive. "Yeah, I need to work on that," he tells Elisabeth. "I'm not going anywhere, though. I have responsibilities here now." Yep, the kid has grown up a lot since the good old days at Washington Irvine. "I think we should keep in contact more often, Ms. Harrison. What the government is doing to people like us is sick. I don't want to be the next one to vanish," even though he already has, "and I don't want anyone else to vanish, either."

There's a slow nod. Elisabeth says quietly, "All right. So here's what I want to do to start with…. I want you to check in with me twice a week, just …." She grins a little. "Just to let me know you and Mallory are okay. All right? The man who runs the Lighthouse, Brian? You can trust him if you need some help — but don't tell him much. He's trying real hard to make a place for kids like you and Mallory, and it could jeopardize his work. But if push comes to shove and you can't get to me, head for a place called Old Lucy's and ask for Abby." Because if the healer can't get Simon to Liz, she'll get him to someone. "I'd like you to be my eyes and ears over here if you can do it without getting caught, but … having you call me is also a way for me to keep tabs on you. If you miss a check-in, I'm gonna come look for you."

"I know. Brian's one of my best friends. I wouldn't do anything to put the Lighthouse in danger," Simon says with dead seriousness in his voice. He grunts and pushes himself off the rock he''s sitting on, feeling a stiffness in his rear. "I'll check in with you, but I need you need to be straight with me, too. I know I'm just a kid, but I don't want to be left in the dark about things that concern me and my sister." A pause, and then the kid looks back at the Lighthouse. "I gotta run, Ms. Harrison. It's almost bed time for those kids." He offers her a smile and a wave. "Thanks for everything," he says, before turning to head back to the place he now calls home.

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