Open Door Policy


bryan_icon.gif niki_icon.gif peter2_icon.gif

Scene Title Open Door Policy
Synopsis Peter informs Niki Sanders that she has been invited to serve the Company, while Ageny Buckley wearily watches on.
Date October 7, 2008

Primatech Research: Cell Block B

The sound of the door to her cell wrenching open awakens Niki from sleep. Being trapped in this room without natural light tends to throw off ones own body rythms, making sleeping during night-time hours and waking during daytime a crap shoot. With the Company understaffed and many of its agents and operatives out looking for Elle Bishop, keeping a tight schedule for the prisoners down here isn't a first priority. "Sorry to intrude so abruptly, Miss Sanders." Stepping down into the cell is the dapper-dressed Peter Petrelli, hands tucked into the pockets of his slacks as he walks. "I thought you might want to know something, and I just found out myself…"

The analog clock on the wall high in the cell reads 3:51, whether that's AM or PM is hard to tell down here. "I just got off the phone with Director Bishop…" Peter tenses his shoulders, coming over to the side of Niki's bed, eyes downcast to the floor. "He's given me some… important news." Behind Peter, two members of the security detail and an unfamiliar doctor enter, the doctor carries a syringe and a clip-board, both of the security detail have holstered tasers.

Niki is sleeping, largely because of a lack of anything else to do. When you're strapped to a bed, there's not so much to do. She opens her eyes at the sound of the door, and looks to Peter. And…grf. Security people, and doctor. This is perhaps not so good. "Is everything all right?" she asks, looking up to him with concern in both eyes and tone.

Unfortunately for Bryan Buckley, sleep isn't on his "things to do when there's nothing else to do" list. As he walks down the hall of this portion of the detainment department, the special agent slips the worried personals section of the classified's from today's paper into the pocket of his sportcoat. Wearing a scowl, he looks less than happy. Hearing Petrelli's voice, however, and noting the security detail, Bryan aims his steps toward Niki's cell. He knew that the woman had been returned, but was either uninformed or didn't show any interest in following up on her. Until now.

Peter gives Niki a long and thoughtful look, unaware of Agent Buckey's approach, reaching out with one hand to lay a leather folio about the size of a wallet down on the metal tray next to her bed. He motions to the security guards, who circle around the bed and begin turning their attention to her restraints. One by one, the wrist and ankle restraints are undone, followed by the chest restraint, "Mister Bishop…" Peter nudges the leather folio open with one hand, revealing an identification card with Niki Sanders photograph on it, along with vital information and a barcode, "Would like to welcome you to Company service, effective immediately." The dark-haired agent motions to the doctor, who circles around the other side of the bed, offering a quiet smile to Miss Sanders.

"In light of recent events, and given your willingness to help us, Director Bishop has seen fit to authorize me to enlist your aid in the recovery of Agent Bishop," He smiles warmly, tilting his head to the side as the security guards simply turn about and begin heading out of the room. "Doctor Bright has an injection for you, nothing serious."

The aforementioned doctor Bright smiles and motions to the syringe, "Diethylentriamene pentaacetate — Er, it's a radiation sickness inhibitor. We've reason to believe your activity might have you crossing into the Red Zone, and we don't want you getting sick." The doctor grimaces, then taps the synringe, "Whenever you're ready."

Peter smirks, then looks back over to Niki. "We're not sure how a partner assignment is going to work yet, you might be paired with Doctor Salonga for a time, given your history. But we'll cover that later."

Niki reaches out, and takes it. She considers and looks to the doctor. "I'm just as much a fan of not getting injected. But whatever it takes." She sits up, happy to be free, and rubs at her wrist.

If Bryan wasn't already disgruntled, hearing this would certainly do the trick. His frown deepens, and he steps into the cell looking every bit the sourpuss he's been since the infiltration and Elle Bishop's kidnapping. He doesn't say a word, but his thoughts are clear enough on his face, and even if Peter weren't a telepath, it'd be easy enough to read them.

The fucking hell, the reverberate within Bryan's skull, buzzing with a near-growl. It's no wonder they keep moving — one more hound on the scent isn't going to help.

Peter arches a brow, looking over his shoulder as the loud thoughts catch his attention. It's well enough that Bryan did distract him, though, it gives Peter an excuse to look away as Doctor Bright administers the injection to Niki. Even after all his years in med school, there's still something in the back of Peter's mind that gives him a mild aversion to needles. "Agent Buckley, good to see you." Peter's brow furrows, and his head cants to the side. Easy Bryan, Bob thinks we need the muscle. I'm inclined to agree. Peter's voice hollowly rings out inside of Bryan's head, and he turns to look over to Niki again with a warm smile.

"For the time being I'm going to ask that you stay here at the facility, though it's much larger than you've seen. And if you're going to go out into the city, you have one of our other agents go with you, at least until you're acclimated to things, alright? I think Doctor Salonga would be more comfortable knowing you had a little observation, just for the next few weeks."

Turning back to Bryan, Peter furrows his brow again, giving a slight squint. We'll find them, Bryan. I promise, I'm not going to let you or Bob down on this one. But you and I can't go up against those people alone. Niki's information she gave us has helped, and we're closing in on them. Peter's expression softens some, and he looks away from Bryan, back to Niki. "This is Agent Buckley, I'm not sure if you've been acquainted yet. You're going to be working with the two of us on the rescue of Agent Bishop."

Niki sits there and lets herself get injected. She looks over to Bryan as he comes in, and her look is vaguely recognizing. "So…someone we're going up against has radiation? I didn't think either of the other two escapees did, from what I saw." She looks back to Peter. "I would really appreciate a shower and some fresh clothes. You have no idea." Cause being strapped down for days, not fun.

Bryan's lip actually curls into more of a snarl than a smile as he glances between Peter and Niki for a moment before letting his eyes settle back on the former. You and I could do it perfectly. No mess. No need for muscle. Bob's just exercising the only muscle he has right now. It's not like Loyal To The Bone Bryan to second-guess his employer like this, but desperate times…

"It won't be as physical as…part of you may wish it to be," he finally says to Niki, his words articulated in such a way that it is obvious he is choosing them carefully. "If all goes according to plan." That needs to be said before he answers Niki's question with a further narrowing of his eyes. "You may have crossed into the Red Zone while you and your gang of miscreants were toting…Agent Bishop around like your personal punching bag. It is possible that you, as well as the others, save for Monroe, are contaminated."

"Bryan's right, it's just a matter of precaution." Peter shakes his head at the Agent's thoughts though, but his conversation remains on Niki's questions and concerns. "Well, I don't think anyone we'll be dealing with has that kind've power." If only Peter knew, "But we might be going through the ruins of Midtown, and the radiation levels there simply aren't safe unprotected. I wouldn't put it past Adam to hide out in an area where everyone else but him would get sick, even if it's a fallback point." Peter cracks a smile, "Consider it planning ahead."

With that, Peter looks up to Buckley with a frown, "We got an ID on Huruma, she attacked a Homeland Security agent, seems like Adam isn't keeping her on a short leash. We might be able to bait her out into the open, but as far as Bob is concerned, you're in command of this operation. If you need to use Sanders or any of us, it's up to your intuition. He seems to have put quite a bit of faith into you."

Niki looks hesitant. "The part of me that might want it to be physical is gone. I'm not sure that it's a great idea to be putting me in the field, but I'll do my best." And she nods at the ruins part. Okay, THAT makes sense. "I'll do whatever I can though. I at least got to see them somewhat."

"After that attack, I'd be surprised if he didn't tighten that leash, if he has her on one at /all./" Bryan says more to the wall behind Niki than either of the other 'agents' in the room. Focusing on Niki again, Bryan arches an eyebrow. "If you'd rather not endanger yourself, Miss Sanders, you are more than welcome to stay behind. No one is /making/ you lend a hand in this. I'm sure the paperwork has been piling up on Mr. Bishop's desk. If you'd rather sort it into files…" But of course that particular menial task would be out of the question for someone such as Niki Sanders.

"Like it or not, you have a gift." Peter says with a hesitant smile, "You can do great things with it, make up for some of the mistakes you've made." His brows tense slightly, and he looks down to the floor for a moment, thoughtful, then back up again. "It's good to have the offer, to know you're needed. Besides, Bryan's right, we could always use a secretary if you don't feel up to it." Agent Petrelli cracks a smile and manages a small laugh, trying to lighten things up a bit, despite Bryan's somber mood.

Stepping away from the bed, Peter motions over to the door, "There's showers attached to the weight room, you'll find that ID card will let you into areas you have clearance for." He turns to look back at the blonde with a smile. "For the time being, I think it would be best if you stayed away from your usual hangouts, if you do leave the compound with someone. If Adam or Huruma manages to spot you, it could complicate things. Just play it smart, and careful. I've got faith in you."

Actually…Niki wouldn't mind a desk job. But she smiles a little. "I'd probably be more useful if I could actually use my…ability, reliably. And I don't really have hangouts. But I'll do my best. Right now, I'd just like to get back to some semblance of a normal life." She gives a wan smile. "It's been a while since I had that."

In order to open the way for Niki to get to the showers, Bryan steps back out of the cell, though he lingers in the hallway. He clenches his jaw, but otherwise says nothing.

Watching Bryan depart, Peter closes his eyes and shakes his head for a moment, turning to look back over his shoulder to Niki. "If you need anything, don't hesitate to come find me. I'll be here the rest of the night, as far as I'm aware. Also, I think Doctor Salonga would like to speak to you once you're cleaned up, so feel free to stop by her office. It's on the first basement level." Peter's brows furrow for a moment, regarding Niki with a hesitant expression, then slowly turns and steps out of the cell door, turning to look where Bryan lingers in the hallway. His eyes divert to the floor for a moment, then back up again. "…You want to talk about anything?" He asks quietly, keeping his voice down as he gives Bryan a somewhat mixed expression.

Bryan merely glances back through the door when he is addressed again, but nothing about his body language would hint at any return of the sentiment. "With you?" he asks as he looks at Peter again, his expression strained with exhaustion and frustration. "No. Nothing. You're not a confidant, Peter. You're a co-worker."

Glancing back through the door, Peter offers Niki a hesitant smile, there's just something about her that itches in the back of his mind, and he can't quite place his finger on it. "Nathan, yeah…" Peter's brow tenses in thought, and he looks back up to Bryan, giving the seemingly depressed agent the full of his attention now. Peter nods, slowly, exhaling a heavy sigh even while managing to keep something of a smile on his face, it's a reassurance tactic, something from his Hospice days.

"If you change your mind, Bryan?" Peter looks at the agent for a moment, watching him with a lingering silence as he considers if the offer is a wise one to make or not, "You know where to find me. I've got an open-door policy." He adds with a crooked smile, then quietly shakes his head and turns around, headed back towards the elevators to file his report with Bob's proxy about Sanders. At least one thing went according to plan.

"You're letting Salonga rub off on you!" Bryan calls down the hall at Peter's back. He stays still for a few moments more before he turns and continues down the hall, on whatever path he was on before.

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