Not Down to Kokomo


cardinal_icon.gif daphne_icon.gif

Scene Title Not Down to Kokomo
Synopsis Unfortunately, Cardinal wants to hire Daphne to go from someplace cold and snowy to someplace colder and snowier — with a compass and a plan.
Date February 4, 2011

The Esplanade

Richard Cardinal hates the cold.

It's swiftly becoming associated with some of his worst memories. The storm. Antarctica. And now the dome. The man's dressed in a trenchcoat and suit, fedora keeping his head from the cold and a scarlet scarf wrapped about his lower face as he stands near the edge of the Esplanade, looking out over the Statue of Liberty and its slightly tilted posture. He's waiting for someone, hands tucked in his pockets, patient. She's never late.

When she does appear, it is not as a streak of color but merely an ordinary, average pedestrian. After all, they're meeting in a public spot, and after all, she's a non-citizen, more or less, a persona non grata in her own mother land. She approaches him from behind, a slight limp from an injury that no longer requires crutches, that no longer impedes her ability — much.

"Aruba, Jamaica, ooh I wanna take you, Bermuda, Bahama, come on pretty mama, Key Largo, Montego, Baby why don't we go…" she sings playfully to his back as she approaches, as if reading his mind about the snow and cold. "Remind me why I'm not still in California? Or better yet, another country?"

"I ask myself the same question every god-damn day," Cardinal replies in a drawl masked a bit by the scarf; tugging the edge of it down, he turns slightly to look back over his shoulder to her with a brow's lift, "You want to run off together, get a townhouse in Tahiti, rob the rich tourists blind and raise two-point-five kids? Don't answer that, I might be too tempted if you said yes."

A quiet chuckle, "Been a bit. How've you been?"
ORDER: Daphne Cardinal

"How exactly do you raise 2.5 kids, anyway? Never mind. With abilities, there's probably a way someone can be a point-five," Daphne says, lifting a gloved hand to ward off the explanation. "I'm okay." She shrugs. She's not registered. She doesn't plan on being registered. There's only so good she can be, living off grid.

"Could be worse. I could be in that snowglobe, right? Can you imagine that?" She shakes her head. To Daphne, very little is more dear to her than freedom, and a sliver of land the size of a postage stamp would be almost as bad of a prison to her as losing her ability.

Of course, Cardinal knows something of how it is. He lived off the grid for years, himself, keeping a step ahead of the law. Things are worse now… but not too much different.

"Yeah," he grimaces, head shaking a little, "Some of my people are in there. And before you ask— no, I have no fucking idea whatit is or where it came from. I'm letting the government handle this one; keeps more heat off my own operation and attention away from what I'm doing."

Daphne's face screws up, mouth pursed, nose wrinkled. "Well, you want my bet, it's the government anyway. Most the time bad shit happens, it's their doing, right? It wasn't enough to make that piece of crap a ghetto. Now they have to make it a prison in every sense of the word." She doesn't have many happy memories of Roosevelt Island.

Her arms fold and she shakes her head. "If there weren't good people in there, I'd say good riddance. But." But. There's always a but. "So whatcha need me for?"

"I need a job done," Cardinal admits, turning his head to look back out towards the Statue, hands tucking back in his pockets, "I could get it done normally, but I'd need a whole team, helicopter transport, and it'd take me fucking weeks probably. You, on the other hand, could get it done in an afternoon."

Wryly, he adds, "You'll need a coat. It's in Alaska."

"Alaska?" she echoes. "And here I thought I was gonna go down to Kokomo." She wrinkles her nose at the thought of more snow — and running in snow isn't her favorite activity — the wind is icy and hurts her lungs and chaps her face, but it's still freedom. It's still speed. That's all that matters.

"You paying?" she asks, nodding toward him. "I mean, I'm all for the cause and all, but a girl's gotta eat."

"I'm not trying to save the whole city this time, so I didn't figure you'd do this one pro bono," comes the quiet chuckle of response, his head bobbing in a slight nod, "I'm paying, yes. I've got a— tracking device, for lack've a better term, but all it does is point in straight lines. I need you to take it up there, triangulate and find the location of what it's pointing at."

He pauses, then glances sharply to her, "Just the location. Don't go anywhere the fuck near that location, or you'll probably get caught, speed or no speed."

Daphne tips her head to squint up at him from under the shock of platinum bangs hanging in her face. "What's so important about this location, or is that strictly on a need to know basis? Because if there's a chance of me getting caught, I'd say I'm classified as 'need to know,' Woodstock. What's this location? I mean, aside from Alaska. How do you know it's there, and what it is, if you don't know where it is?"

"It's an Institute facility," Cardinal admits with a slight nod, "It's not their home base, but it's… a major facility. They're building a machine, there, a machine that— well." He grimaces, "Let's just say that they've already killed at least one electrokinetic trying to power it, and if they manage to turn the damn thing on, we're all in a shit-ton of trouble."

She's quiet for a moment, mouth screwed to one side as she considers the task. She's been inside an Institute facility. The horror of that night still wakes her from her sleep three nights in a week, nightmares she shakes off as "nothing" when Corbin asks if she's all right, when he can feel her heartbeat hummingbird fast in her chest, the sweat on her skin chilly and clammy.

"You don't wanna come along for the ride?" she tosses toward Cardinal. It's a yes of sorts.

"As if I had the time," says Cardinal in wry tones, shaking his head slowly, "I'm starting to get the hang of subcontracting and delegating, though, which is probably a good thing. Doing everything myself is kind've exhausting."

Daphne snorts. "With me, time is not an issue," she teases. "You need to work on your stamina." There's an impish smirk, but she shrugs. "So where's this device, and I assume you have like, coordinates or something for where you want me to stop and point? Alaska is kinda vague." She waves a hand in a general area to punctuate the word. "And big."

"I know." Cardinal's gloved hand emerges from his pocket, pulling out a small item wrapped in distressed leather and offering it over, "Here it is. As for coordinates… not really. I've got a GPS and a map for you. All we really need are enough location points and directions that we can triangulate to find the facility. Right now it'll just point at Roosevelt, but when you get to Alaska, it should point right at the facility."

Daphne takes the items with some distaste evident in her face, nose wrinkling as she moves to put them into her red and white courier bag. "All right. Can I go tomorrow? I'd like one more day to not push myself. Sprained my knee or something last week. Fucking negators. If I never meet a negator again for as long as I live, I would only be too happy." The only negator she likes, she knew when she didn't have an ability to negate, anyway.

"Just a direction? That's gonna give you enough to go off of?" she says. "That seems super vague."

"Take your time…" A wince, Cardinal's nose wrinkling in a grimace, "…ouch. Yeah, take another day or two. And if you get me four or five points around Alaska, with GPS coordinates and degrees the compass is showing, we can draw the lines on the map and pinpoint the place pretty securely."

"Got it." Maps, she's good with, being the world traveler she is. "I'll text you when I'm leaving. If you don't hear from me after that after 12 hours…" her voice trails off, and the speedster squints up at him. What's he going to be able to do for her? She'll be thousands of miles away, and likely in government hands, if that's the case.

"Assume a polar bear ate me, I guess," Daphne adds lamely. "I bet I'm sweet and crunchy."

"If I don't hear from you," Cardinal says simply, "Then I'll add you to the list of people I need to rescue. That's all."

Daphne chuckles, and readjusts her courier bag on her shoulder. "That you have a list makes me feel much better. Preparedness is half the battle. Or something."

That she's still a little nervous is obvious from the fidgeting she does with the strap on her shoulder, and then she gives a quick wave of blurred fingers, before blurring away — call it a test run on her knee.

"And bring that thing back! It's the only one I've got!" A low chuckle as she blurs into the distance, Cardinal's head shaking just a little as he looks back up to the Statue.

"Well, ol' girl," he tells the far-off figure of metal, "Time to stop myself from murdering our future."

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License