Old Soldiers and Company Men


claire_icon.gif niki_icon.gif raith_icon.gif

Scene Title Old Soldiers and Company Men
Synopsis Both are made of sterner stuff. Too tough to let a little thing like attempted assassination slow them down.
Date November 8, 2010

Redbird Security - Upstairs

Above the ground floor that houses the lobby and office spaces, each of the upper floors can be accessed from the stairwell's landings. Wooden floors and pale cream walls keep the hallways modest and open - the rare window reinforced to prevent easy break-ins.

Each floor contains four small to moderate sized apartments, their doors painted a reddish umber hue and marked with a peephole above a black iron plaque with the apartment number on it. The lighting is soft and indirect in the halls, automatically turning on after six pm.

It's been hours since her father was dropped off at Red Bird Securities by Huruma and her companion Ryans. It was the first she had heard of what happened to him, since Claire Bennet didn't register the news about the Ferrymen council being attacked.

Of course, her daddy was supposed to be invincible.

Sitting on the edge of the bed, Claire has her father's uninjured hand clasped tightly in both of her's smaller ones, thumb brushing over his scarred knuckles lightly. Head bowed, her long dark brown hair falls in a curtain to hide eyes glistening with tears, a sniff from the regenerator gives away the fact that she's been trying today.

Daddies are not suppose to get hurt like this.

"He's up here," comes Niki's voice from the stairwell. The woman attached to it enters the room a moment later. She smells faintly of whiskey, but isn't showing any signs of inebriation, thankfully. "Claire," the blonde murmurs. "How is he?"

Just moments after Niki steps out of the stairwell and into the room, Jensen Raith steps out behind her, and for Claire, his appearance is perhaps not the stark contrast some might have been expecting, despite the situation: The only sign that he's on 'higher alert' than usual is the fact that he didn't bother to hide his body armor under anything more than his long coat. Even his sunglasses are still present, hanging from his front coat pocket. The ex-spy interjects before Claire can answer Niki with, "Probably okay. Old soldiers and Company men like us, we're tough." It's not really untrue.

Rather than waiting around, though, Raith steps in and does what he should do and checks Noah Bennet's vitals. The results satisfy him well enough. "One tough SOB, alright," he mutters more to himself than anyone. If Claire has anything to add, she'll do it when she feels ready.

Glancing up through the strains of dark hair, Claire looks between both people, before straightening her back. She answers anyway, "No different." Meaning he's not dead, but he's also just laying there still oblivious to the world and the hands that hold his. Letting go long enough to comb hair our of her face, Claire lets her focus fall on Raith.

"What's going on?" There is suspicion in Claire's tone, brows slowly lowering with worry, fingers curl around Noah's hand again, tightening… clinging to her father. This might not be easy.

"Claire," Niki begins gently, approaching the other woman, wrapping her arm around her shoulders, "we need to move him. We need to get your father out of the city." And by we, she really means Raith. Mostly. She'll help how she can, but… There's only so far she can go with them.

"Shit's gone all wrong," is Raith's expansion on Niki's statement, "I don't know what yet, but the government's mobilizing. I think some safe houses have been compromised, some of our people are probably dead or in jail already, I don't know." Enough of this. Raith is back up on his feet and scanning around. "We need a stretcher. Something we can turn into one. We're on the clock, so help me find something, please."

"But… He's suppose to be safe here." Claire looks confused glancing between both, fingers tightening on her fathers. "Why… why drag him out of here?" Her whole body is tenses, but she doesn't move to find what Raith wants, like a stubborn child. "Where are you taking him?" And more importantly…

"Can't… can I go with him?" Claire doesn't seem ready to let her father go anywhere.

"None of us are safe in this city," Niki tells Claire. "We're all in danger. You know this. You know what's going on out there. People know where to find us. The safest place for your father isn't holed up with us. It's out of New York." Which is where Niki assumes Raith intends to take Noah Bennet, as it seems the only logical choice. And as to whether Claire can accompany them, that's not her call.

"Help your father, by helping Raith and I." Niki flashes him a quick look and nods her head. "I think we have a stretcher in the basement." She doesn't waste time in heading that way immediately.

"Out of New York is damn right," Raith replies, taking a break from looking for a stretcher now that Niki's taking care of it. Instead, he takes a folded piece of semi-matte paper out from under his coat and unfolds it, revealing a small map of New York City complete with lots of red 'edit' marks. "City's going to be a mess for the next few days, at least," he tells Claire, "Never mind the next few hours. The only reliable way we'll have of getting people out is, with the helicopter." The hesitation in the ex-spy's voice is unmistakable. using the helicopter, however, is necessary. "Not a lot of space in there. I know you want to come, but we need to save room for wounded and kids. Besides, if I die, who's going to take care of my dogs?" Whether he is serious about that last part or not is a mystery. And will likely remain a mystery.

The refusal gets a pained look from Claire, and for a moment it looks like she might cry again, head ducking down. She doesn't, but it's a close thing. "Damn… it's not fair." The words are murmured, but slowly she she forces her hands to relax their grip on Noah's hand. Of course, life is rarely fair. With a shaky breath, Claire just nods her head slowly, "Okay…" she concedes softly to let her father be taken away from her.

Looking at her father's prone form, Claire slides off the bed to stand, only to lean down and kiss Noah's cheek. "Just… someone keep me updated?" She ask as she straightens and forces herself to take a step away from the bed.

"Someone will." Raith seems to only be paying half attention to Claire, the rest of his focus centered one the map in his hands, working out his escape route before he actually starts barreling down it with an injured man. "If we get caught, if any of us get caught, believe me, you're going to know it. And I mean, you will know it. I won't go quietly, and I doubt your old man will, either." And that's that. The map is folded and stuffed back underneath the ex-spy's coat. "Niki! On a schedule, babe!"

"Ain't that the truth." Claire agrees with the other man, in a tone rough with emotions. Waiting for Niki, her hand seeks her father's again, squeezing it gently. "Any news on my mo — Sandra?" She glances across Noah, worry clearly showing.

This is the downside of turning her back on her own father's group, Claire knows nothing that's going on, completely in the dark.

"Call me babe one more time," Niki faux-threatens, carrying a battered stretcher effortlessly under one arm. "I'll help you get him as far as you need." She shakes her head regretfully at Claire even as she prepares to move Noah over to the stretcher, settling it next to him on the bed. "We don't have time for questions."

"Glad to hear that. Wouldn't mind an extra hand in case I have to plow through any roadblocks." Raith joins Niki on the bed, albeit at the opposite end. "Hopefully, that won't happen. Ready?" he asks in preparation to lift and move Bennet. "One, two, three." Heave! "It probably goes without saying, Claire, but don't hang around here longer than you have to. I can get you a gun if you need one, but your best bet is making yourself scarce."

Niki gets a glare, but at least she isn't insisting on an answer. "I'll be fine." Claire says stubbornly, chin tilting up a little, even as she watches them move her father. Watching as he doesn't even respond, the regenerator's stomach turns at the thought he might not make it. No… He'll make it. He has too… right?

She can't stay there anymore. "Just keep him safe," Claire chokes out around the lump in her throat, before she turns and rushes out of the room, leaving them to deal with Noah. Any calls to stop her will only get the sound of her retreating foot steps as an answer.

Noah Bennet is effortless to move for Niki, even without Raith's aid. But his aid keeps his body from angling any way that it really shouldn't right now. She glances up to watch Claire go, understanding how she must feel right now so acutely. And if she's seeming cold, it's because delaying the inevitable will only hurt in the long run.

"Let's get him out of here."

"Kid, keeping him safe is my business, now. And I don't like having unfinished business. Now help us out and get the doors, will you?" Raith settles from hefting up one end of the stretcher and, as soon as the women are ready, he's off for the exit as quickly as safety will allow. Noah Bennet was the first casualty tonight, and he won't be the last. As head of Special Activities, keeping the Ferrymen safe is his business, and the events that have already transpired can mean only one thing: Business is good.

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