Operation Apollo


autumn_icon.gif candy_icon.gif cardinal_icon.gif claire2_icon.gif eileen_icon.gif gabriel_icon.gif

huruma_icon.gif magnes_icon.gif sarisa_icon.gif raith_icon.gif

Also Featuring:

the_haitian_icon.gif sanderson_icon.gif

Scene Title Operation Apollo
Synopsis The United States Government rallies its forces against the Vanguard.
Date November 23, 2009

Somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean

From their approach, the ocean looked like a rippled glass plate with diamonds strewn across it.

"Mister Cardinal!" A voice screams over the roar of a now taxied airplane's propellers as its back cargo doors open to the brilliant light of a late afternoon sun burning dark and crimson on the horizon. The greeting comes from a suited man approaching the C-130 just after touchdown on the deck of an aircraft carrier positioned in the middle of the Atlantic ocean. Surrounded by military personnel and too many nondescript-looking men in suits, this should likely be where the handcuffs are slapped on Richard Cardinal and his shorter, blonder companion on the plane, Claire Bennet.

Perhaps this is where Cardinal's luck turns around.

"You're a little late getting here, the debriefing is about to start! We're going to need you and miss Bennet down on Deck 2!" Offering out a hand, the dark-haired government agent offers a crooked smile. "Welcome aboard the USS George Washington, sir!" Sir?

On their hurried passage across the tarmac, a disoriented and jet-lagged Claire Bennet and Richard Cardinal discover just how much the USS George Washington is a behemoth of a vessel. Situated amidst the vast expanse of unknown ocean waters, it sits like a dull gray shield floating atop the still mid-Atlantic waters. Fully operational, the aircraft carrier buzzes to activity as a group of "guests" detained on the ship's lower decks are rounded up from their bunks one by one and brought to hangar bay just below the upper deck after Cardinal and Claire's arrival is confirmed.

Surrounded by military aircraft, armed soldiers and the subtle rock and tilt of the ocean's pull on the vessel, these gathered individuals are brought together alongside but a handful of soldiers in the below-decks aircraft hangar bay of the tremendous military vessel.

A palpable air of tension hangs here as familiar and unfamiliar faces are greeted by one another for the first time since being transported to the vessel. Standing in the middle of the hangar bay alongside them is a vast cadre of military officials whose allegiance goes far beyond the embroidered flag that should be sewn onto the shoulders of their uniforms — these soldiers bear none, soldiers recognized by no country or government.

While the flagless mass of a military force of only one hundred is situated in a rank and file line between two unmarked black helicopters, ahead of the soldiers, a different line has been established. Willing and unwillingly gathered, these "guests" of this immense military vessel are situated shoulder to shoulder amidst the most unlikely of circumstances. Somehow, though, amidst all of this the shackles have come off those who needed to be restrained earlier — a measure of trust, or at least the illusion thereof.

Ahead of the line sits a long table saddled with two computer towers and three large flat display screens; one set in the center and two angled on either side. Standing beside this display, a tall and thin man with a dark complexion and bald head is a familiar face to some of those gathered, the silent form of the Haitian, the Company's prime negator. But his presence here serves only as a balance of power, this isn't his meeting, this isn't his mission.

It's theirs, and this is where they will find out.

The brim of a baseball cap shadows Cardinal's features as he steps out of the plane, nearly opaque shades protecting his sensitive eyes from the glare of that afternoon sun; a flight jacket worn loose over his athletic frame, though the old logo for Chicago Air's long since been removed from it. These days, he flies to the beat of a different pair of wings. "Damn sun," is audibly muttered to Claire as he steps out onto the deck, one hand raising to further shade his features.

Sir? The former burglar's lips twitch in the faintest of smiles, and he merely nods to the man offering the words, heading after them down along towards the deck below, and the meeting that's been prepared. Never look surprised in situations like these. It just makes people think they know more than you.

"This should be interesting," he murmurs to his companion, looking over the table and its lack of logos or insignias upon the men gathered about, "Maybe your father isn't entirely incompetent after all."

Candy stands where she was told to stand, but the young woman seems to be in a mildly catatonic state. At least from the outside, she feels naked without her ability. Losing the ability to defend herself the only way she knows, her arms are wrapped around her body, and she slouches. Making herself look as small as she can. Reruns of her stay in Moab constantly run through her head, no matter how nicely she is treated. One hand holds a glass of water, hanging on to that small bit of comfort, and fully expecting at any moment to have it taken from her. For her to be put into an iron cell, and left to dehydrate once more, before they knock her out to give her fluids through IV. Her body shudders, while she stares at that cup of water, struggling to will the water to move, any sign that she is getting her powers back To say she doesn't trust those who abducted her before they even thought of coming to her and asking her is a rather large understatment.

As she hears voices, she looks up for a moment or two, taking in any new arrivals that have come along. They quickly return to that glass of water, if she can just get her powers back. Then if they try to pull something, she can turn them into clouds of red mist…

Looking like she hasn't hardly slept " damn military planes are loud, Claire stepped out deciding not to be very curtious and just glances at the hand with a slightly sour look. She looks rumpled in her hoodie and jeans a back pack over her shoulder, her blonde hair a bit mused."Can't even allow us to sleep… no gotta come listen to someone babble on." She gives a heavy sigh, as a tired Claire is not a very good thing, following Richard and the.. guy thorugh the corridors.

Pushing her freehand deep in the pockets of her black hoodie, Claire glances around the faces as they finally arrive to where they have to be, suddenly feeling much more awake. "Whoa." The word is whispered softly. She nudges Cardinal with her elbow, leaning close she murmurs "Look at all these people…" She spots the Haitian quickly enough and goes on tip toes to give him a wave and a tired smile, before checking out everyone else in the room. Something about his comment amuses her. "Which one?" She asks in a flat voice glancing out of the corner of her eyes with a smirk. "Though I have to wonder if he knows I'm here." She can't imagine he'd be happy about it.

Magnes can't stand with the rest of them, wearing his black denim jacket over a dark blue Superman t-shirt, a pair of black jeans, and some black sneakers, he's hunched down on all fours, trying to stay upright. Normally standing isn't so bad without his ability, but right now, even with just the subtle rocking, if he stood up he'd be like Brian Griffin trying to stand in a van. "When do I get my ability back? How are you people even standing up without it? I feel like I'm gonna throw up, or fall on my face, it's like standing on a rope…"

At end of the line is a small, pale woman with a mane of dark brown hair still damp from a recent shower, its ends curling like ornate coils of ink at her temples and the nape of her slender neck. Eileen's fingers tease at the topmost button of the olive-coloured cargo jacket she wears over her clothes, which include a pair of jeans and a wool sweater for extra protection against the elements for when she's up on deck, and occupy the attention of her dominant hand. The other is folded across her midsection in a pose that appears deceptively relaxed at a glance but is also guarded, and upon closer inspection the sort of posture someone might adopt if they were attempting to contain a stomach full of swallowtailed butterflies.

She doesn't look like she wants to be here and yet, beneath her clothes, there's no injection mark either. The hand toying with the top button drops back to her side around the time Cardinal and Claire finally arrive, fingernails curving into the palm of her hand, her attention solely on the table ahead of them.

Magnes can't stand with the rest of them, wearing his black denim jacket over a dark blue Superman t-shirt, a pair of black jeans, and some black sneakers, he's hunched down on all fours, trying to stay upright. Normally standing isn't so bad without his ability, but right now, even with just the subtle rocking, if he stood up he'd be like Brian Griffin trying to stand in a van. "When do I get my ability back? How are you people even standing up without it? I feel like I'm gonna throw up, or fall on my face, it's like standing on a rope…"

At end of the line is a small, pale woman with a mane of dark brown hair still damp from a recent shower, its ends curling like ornate coils of ink at her temples and the nape of her slender neck. Eileen's fingers tease at the topmost button of the olive-coloured cargo jacket she wears over her clothes, which include a pair of jeans and a wool sweater for extra protection against the elements for when she's up on deck, and occupy the attention of her dominant hand. The other is folded across her midsection in a pose that appears deceptively relaxed at a glance but is also guarded, and upon closer inspection the sort of posture someone might adopt if they were attempting to contain a stomach full of swallowtailed butterflies.

She doesn't look like she wants to be here and yet, beneath her clothes, there's no injection mark either. The hand toying with the top button drops back to her side around the time Cardinal and Claire finally arrive, fingernails curving into the palm of her hand, her attention solely on the table ahead of them.

That Gabriel did not arrive here in shackles is some small wonder, which also means his ability is flowing through his veins as quickly as the negation would have, in other such circumstances. They're separated by vinegar and honey, but in either case, it's still luring, and so that's what they can all have in common. That Gabriel recognises several faces is no surprise, his gaze going from visage to visage with needle-prick sharpness and focus.

A dark grey sweater is mostly covered by a woolen coat, jeans faded, boots worn. He is unremarkable in this crowd, and it could be worth it to be even more unremarkable than he is. Still, it's his own face he wears, for better or for worse. Neatly side-stepping the bent over double Magnes with only a quizzical glance, Gabriel moves to take his seat, hooking an arm over the back of it as everyone assembles, side by side.

Claire is pinned beneath a hawkish look from the serial killer, mouth curling into a cat's smile and eyebrows twitching up in subtle surprise, but she's not the one he is trying to locate. When Gabriel does see Eileen, he's as understated as ever — a flicker of acknowledgment in his eyes, that Sarisa had come good on her word, and no effort to approach, not yet, simply looking her up and down from his vantage point.

In a similar state to what Candy Allard feels, Huruma is very symbiotic with her ability; when it is not there, it feels as if there is a hole- that there is something within the world that she just happens to be missing out on- and something that leaves her feeling vulnerable. Such an ill feeling does not sit well with her. Luckily, there was someone somewhere that noticed enough to mention it to the guy typing in the data. After being trucked off by Veronica a week ago, Huruma has been spending a lot of her time inside of small cells with little fresh air and even less sunlight. It shows on her face- mainly in the lines of her eyes and the fixedly cranky bending of her brow.

Whatever she had been wearing during that stint, however, is long gone; her clothes are fresh, and even the shoulders of her olive drab shirt still have lines from where they had been folded flat. The shirt was easy- the pants, less so. More issued fatigues, shirt tucked into a high belt, and pants tucked into the lips of dark boots. Somehow, all of it fits on more than a physical level. Huruma's pose as she sits in one of the center chairs is much like it always is. One leg propped over the other, one arm lain relaxed over her higher knee, the other slack against her middle. Whether or not she notes the other presences, the woman's eyes are fixed silently upon the man standing ahead, a sentinel beside the table holding all of the equipment.

There is no real threat in her gaze- but it is certainly not the most friendly of the looks that the Haitian may happen to get today.

This situation, this unexpected turn in life has doubtlessly taken some of those present far, far out of their comfort zone. But for one of them, at least, this is all old hat. The others might feel nervous or out of place, but oddly enough, Jensen Raith feels right at home. So much so that his first request, upon his arrival, was for a pair of BDUs, and he's worn them from that point forward, standing tall- military tall- in camouflage pants and matching shirt, with spit-polished, black boots on his feet. Some might even mistake him as on-loan from Uncle Sam, which is indirectly true. He observes the rest of the assembled group as best he can without letting his gaze move too far from straight forward. This doesn't exactly allow him to see a whole lot, but that doesn't matter. Means team-building, all the same.

But more than thoughts of team-building, or how oddly at home he feels, his mind is filled with thoughts of how he hasn't had a cheeseburger for… how long has it been now? Too long, plain and simple. And he could really use a cheeseburger right about now…

Noticing finally, with all the commotion of movement on the hangar deck, Magnes' situation, there's a quiet voice that comes at his back. "Here…" comes the woman's voice before a scuff of chair legs come across the deck floor. There's a creak of metal, and the folding chair is set beside Magnes as a woman in her early twenties with a short-cropped black haircut kneels next to him, one hand on his shoulder. "Come on, I'll help you up. Whatever they drugged you with should wear off in a couple more hours by now."

The patch on her fatigues reads Sanderson, but the look on her face is anything but that of a soldier hardened by conflict. Blue eyes drift from Magnes' to the chair, then back again. "Come on, it'll be alright." A soft, hesitant smile, and one of Sanderson's arms wraps around Magnes' to help him up into the chair. "I can't believe I'm actually meeting the guy who flashed the President at the FRONTLINE conference…" she admits with an amused smirk in the interim. Seems Magnes Varlane's reputation goes a long way.

If reputations cross vast distances, it's Gabriel Gray's that earns the displeased look of nearly every soldier on deck. Still notorious as the Midtown Man, the expressions of distrust and anxiety showing on the men and women is palpable. Some whisper quietly to themselves, others merely level baleful stares in the serial killer's direction. No matter how much trust he is ever given, in this future, Gabriel still wears the yoke of Midtown around his neck, a scarlet letter written in the blood of hundreds of thousands killed — a crime he did not commit.

"Ladies and gentlemen, I'd like to thank you all for your cooperation — whatever measures of it you've given — up until this point." Emerging from the open hangar bay doors on the aircraft carrier, a man in his late 40s with a soft-in-the-middle but stocky build addresses the gathered forces. Bald as a newborn's backside, the old general's approach is slow and confident, and his accent laden with a fading Texan drawl. "I apologize for having to gather the lot of you under such diverse circumstances, but we were short pressed for time and formalities had to wait in order to ensure operations on our limited schedule." A look is afforded to the Haitian, then those eyes sweep across the group. Dogging the general's heels is a taller figure, a stern looking blonde woman in a sleek black suit with a leather jacket worn over her blazer. Cold blue eyes assess the gathered irregulars, her hands folded behind her back.

"My name is General Sebastian Autumn," as many would had seen him on the television during FRONTLINE's beginning days would have ascertained, "and you have been collected here because of your varied levels of personal expertise in a crisis that threatens us all. May I be the first to apologize to your for the means in which some of you may have been collected for this endeavor, but the time for velvet gloves and polite courtesy have been eroded by the severity of the crisis that brings us together. This…" he motions to the woman who moves to his side, "is CIA Special Activities operative Sarisa Kershner, and she will be operations director for this mission, which you will now be briefed on. If you have questions following this debriefing, they will be addressed en-route." En-Route?

Nodding to General Autumn, Sarisa's blue eyes sweep over the people in front of her, and a small remote device slides from her palm to a more easily activated position, with one flat button depressed that activates the computers' screens, displaying the CIA logo. "The lot of you have been brought here because of specific talents that the United States and international governments have collected together from a database of qualified and skilled personnel. You have been brought here either because of a unique skill or ability or because you have had prior contact and combat experience with the multi-national terrorist organization known as Vanguard. I assure you, however, that you have not been brought together here as prisoners…"

One tired sigh slips forth from Sairsa, and the blonde's eyes drift over the crowd. "The CIA's Special Activities Division has been charged with the task of finding and eliminating the remaining Vanguard presence globally, along with a weapon of mass destruction that they are in possession of. To this effort, the President has authorized that the committee formed for the expressed purpose of the Vanguard's extermination be given full magnanimity to clear all criminal record of "enlisted" personnel intrinsic to the recapture of this UMD and the Vanguard's elimination. After long deliberation, this committee has put together a list of desired potentials to be involved in this operation. However, due to the actions of a rogue agent and the difficulty presented in establishing a cooperative multi-national task force to participate in this endeavor, we have found ourselves operating on too short a time table."

"Those present here have either volunteered for this operation or have been requested by the President of the United States personally from a list of qualified and skilled persons. Some among you may have grievances with one or more branches of the government, whether legitimate or not. Right now, however, I ask that you put aside these differences and differences you may have with each other in the best interests of the world. You are being asked to participate in an operation to save the lives of people you may never meet. It could be your own family, or families half a world away, it does not matter. We have no indication of how the Vanguard intend to strike with this weapon and we do not intent to let them ever have the chance to act on any plan."

Exhaling a sigh, Sarisa looks to General Autumn for a moment, and then back to the crowd. "Any of those gathered here who do not wish to willingly participate in Operation Apollo may leave this carrier immediately without fear of apprehension to be returned to where you were collected. However, to those of you who cooperate with the United States Government, you will be given amnesty for all prior transgressions and all criminal record against you held by both the United States Government and affiliated organizations. You will be allowed to live your lives with a clean slate. What you choose to do with this second chance from there on out is out of our hands, and special dispensation will be given to those without United States citizenship and other extenuating circumstances on a case-by-case basis to be negotiated at a later date."

"Guess." It's a dry answer to the question of which father was being referred to, Richard Cardinal's hand coming up to pull off the shades now that he's indoors; slightly red-rimmed eyes sweeping the room to take in familiar faces, one brow ticking up to the shadow of his hat's brim at some. There's faces he knows, names, and in fact the number of people he does know here far outnumbers those he doesn't… and those he doesn't are the military and related officials.

Oh yes. This will definately be interesting.

During the introduction of the situation, he shifts the heavy duffle bag he's carrying off his shoulder to sit beside his feet, one hand coming up to scratch at the side of his nose. At the offers given to the gathered, his expression is frankly dubious, but he doesn't speak up in protest or comment on his disbelief.

Speaking of the Midtown Man, as Candy looks up when they start to talk, she spots that certain person. The look in her eyes goes from brief bewilderment that /he/ is here to admiration. After all, when you have someone whose reputation speaks of hundreds of thousands of people killed, most of them probably unevolved, you tend to get some kind of reputation. Her eyes then go to the woman addressing them, watching her as she stands there, still holding that glass of water in a white-knuckled grip. She bites her lips, wondering just what they have gotten her into, but the knowledge of her criminal record being erased tends to help her along.

Despite the reassurances that they're not here as prisoners, Candy can't shake the feeling of being back in Moab, and feeling powerless over her own life again.

As she continues to scan faces… looking for one she really hopes to see, Claire gets that creepy feeling of being watch. There is a little twitch of her head and she turns it as if unable to stop herself until she locks eyes with Gabriel for a brief moment. Her eyes widen slightly, that first surprise as she's caught totally off guard, but then quickly her eyes narrow into a dangerous glare at that smile. When he looks away, her face falls into one of worry and she takes a step back, putting Cardinal in the way of her former stalker seeing her again. "Shit.." She whispers fiercely, a hand gripping Cardinal's arm, fingers curling tight. "Sylar is here.. why him?" There is actually a touch of fear in her her softly spoken words.

Then a figure is seen off to the side and Cardinal and, strangely enough, her worry about Sylar are tossed aside.. Her boss will feel Claire's hand fall away as she moves quickly through the crowd, as she watches him get helped into a chair. She glares at the woman helping him, she moves to touch Magnes, her look clearly stating 'Mine! Rawr!' and hisses. "Leave him alone, you all have done enough to him… I've got him." Then she turns a concerned look devoid of any anger as she moves to make sure he makes it into the chair. "Magnes?" She asks softly barely above a whisper even as Autumn starts to speak. Her attention slowly shifting over to the 'man' in charge.

"Than—" Magnes doesn't get to finish thanking the woman when Claire makes her way over, eyes widening as he moves to wrap a hand around her waist, getting comfortable in the chair. "Claire! I don't have my ability right now, a four year old probably walks better than me, it's weird when you can't control when you're gonna fall…" He smiles though, trying to keep a stiff upper lip for her as the people in charge speak. "What they're saying… you'll be able to go out and not have to worry anymore!" But then he has a question, and raises his hand. "When you say affiliated organizations, that means countries affiliated with America, too?"

Eileen's attention flickers down the line, not when she senses Gabriel's eyes on her — she does/ — but instead at Claire's quiet outburst. She studies her interaction with Magnes in reverent silence, and only for the brief amount of time it takes to confirm that nothing is wrong — or at least not //as wrong as the morally questionable methods the government employed for the purpose of bringing them here.

Unlike the blonde, she does not visibly react as her eyes pass over Gabriel's face on their way back to Sarisa, except perhaps to linger an instant longer than they do on Cardinal, Candy or even Raith. Then, without so much as a lifted chin or some other, more subtle display of acknowledgement, her head turns and she's facing stonily forward again.

Gabriel is among those whose ears would prick up more at the notion of a clean criminal record as opposed to saving the worrrld but. Considering the hisses and whispers his presence had evoked, small use that would be. Why him is a good question, from the cheerleader, but here he is, chin up, and gravitating between meeting stares with his own disarmingly flat glare, and utterly ignoring them. That's the treatment the strangers get, anyway - even as the officials in front of them all begin their presentation, his attention drifts.

It's Raith that Gabriel spies, curiousity as obvious as the way Gabriel's spine straightens just a little in his lazy sprawl on the chair. Its then he flicks quicker looks around. No Peter. No Teodoro. No Ethan. He doesn't think they're necessarily evading this rake in of needed allies, but—

What it means that they're not here piques his curiousity. Still, all he can do for now is fail to share another glance with Eileen before restlessly crossing his arms, the heel of his boot tapping in a fidget against the floor.

In testing her ability's slow return- well, in so much as she can feel it present, the dark man takes care of it otherwise- Huruma is much less obvious than at least one of the others. Close inspection puts her eyes unfocused for a great while. Until General Autumn brings himself out with Sarisa on his heels. It is then that the tall woman readjusts her gaze onto the pair now in the midst of activity.

For the entirety of the short introduction to why she is here in the first place- Huruma stays wordless. Even the sound of her breath makes little white noise, and her chest does not rise visibly. Perhaps it is a lack of sleep that finds her conserving her energy, or perhaps something different. There are points where she stirs by some sparse inches, and others where that crease on her t-zone deepens. But, in the end… Huruma is listening, and she has not exactly made any moves to exit her seat. Besides- some of what is being offered does have some interest to her, Vanguard or not, and regardless of how many shady individuals she knows.

The only time that she looks away from the matter at hand is to turn her eyes towards Magnes and Claire. Only a couple of seconds at most.

The CIA is up to their elbows in this operation. Better yet, high-brow army officials and the Marines are involved. Pentacles was right; something about the remains of Vanguard has the president spooked. However, he knows that Sarisa is only being half-honest. They're being asked to participate, sure, but they're being asked at gunpoint. The more things change….

Throughout her spiel, Raith stays quiet and simply listens, filing away as much as he can. Odds are good a negator is present; no worries about his mind being read, and that means he's free to mull over these facts and figure out the best way to turn this around in his favor and get back at everyone responsible without breaking the terms of the deal. He'll play their game, but he's going to cheat, cheat, cheat. He resists rolling his eyes when Magnes voices his question. Now really isn't the time….

Edging back from Claire and Magnes, Sanderson's dark brows crease together and she offers the blonde a tilt of her head to the side and a lopsided smile, as if somehow this just became a game. A stern look from a far taller and far older man in uniform standing in line seems to wipe that smile off of Sanderson's face, however. She tips her head into a nod, threading a loose lock of black hair behind one ear as she takes a quiet step away from the chair and keeps her vigil on the debriefing from that point just behind and to the side of Magnes.

There's a blank stare from Sarisa when Magnes raises his hand and asks a question, like this is high school. Her mouth opens a touch, not exactly sure how to handle the unexpected question, and all Sanderson can do is hide her smile behind one hand as she shakes her head. "This— " Sarisa looks to Autumn, who just helplessly shrugs his shoulders in a it's Magnes Varlane motion. The blonde's eyes settle back on the younger man, brows furrowing. "Arrangements will be made where possible, but we cannot promise foreign cooperation in all cases. Regarding your particular issues with the nation of Japan," there's a shake of her head, a twitch of one brow, "we will likely be able to make that problem disappear." She waits, not long enough for Magnes to speak up again, but enough to compose herself as she swallows noisily and looks back to the otherwise silent cadre. With her wits together, she begins anew.

"I will now give you a full background detailing on the reason you have been summoned here. This information will catch all parties up to date on present intelligence and operations protocols pertaining to Operation Apollo." A button is depressed with one sweep of Sarisa's thumb after that statement, and the screens display a two dimensional map of the earth, with locations all across the world marked with red boxes. "Almost one year ago, the Department of Defense was issued a classified document from a field agent operating in New York who claimed to have information regarding a potential biological weapon attack planned on the United States." A click and a beep, and one of the screens displays the profile photo of a dark haired woman. "Agent Minea Dahl's report contained information on an attempt on the life of then President-elect Allen Rickham, as well as details surrounding the organization's global influences and bio-terrorism agenda. At the time the report was received by the DoD, the attempt on the President-elect's life had already come to pass, and we were but a scant few weeks away from the proposed deadline of the alleged biological attack."

Another click and beep, and Minea's picture disappears and is replaced by a satellite image of New York City, with several areas of the city highlighted by red-shaded boxes. "The DoD made contact with the FBI and CIA with the intention of verifying the reports delivered by Agent Dahl. Meanwhile, elements within the government made contact with the classified evolved-specialization branch of the Department of Homeland Security, collectively known as the Company…" Sarisa's blue eyes drift over towards the Haitian, then back to the group. "Miscommunication on the part of DHS and the Company was believed at the time to be the result of improper handling of information and chain of command which resulted in neither the FBI or DHS being able to verify the information handed down by Agent Dahl and the government's inability to timely react to the alleged threat without causing mass hysteria. At the time, no branch of the government could be certain of the validity of the threat or prove the existence of the Vanguard organization."

"Later work handled by internal affairs indicated that the miscommunication between the United States Government and the Company was facilitated by an inside arrangement in DHS and the Company perpetrated by one DHS operative Johnathan Carmichael and Senior Company Agent Roger Goodman. Their actions were discovered to be unconnected to the biological weapons attack." Sarisa's brows furrow, and she displays — briefly — images of Carmichael and Goodman, both listed as Deceased before changing the screens to display the images of several individuals connected like a family tree. At the top of this branching pattern of surveillance photos is an elderly man with wavy gray hair.

"In the wake of the Vanguard's attempted attack, the CIA began an overseas examination into alleged Vanguard activities and began to uncover proof of the organization's existence, along with information that finally became available to the Department of Defense, FBI and Department of Homeland Security." A click, and the image of the old man fills up one screen. "The Vanguard was revealed to be the brainchild of what was believed to be an unknown unregistered Evolved named Kazimir Volken. Further research into this name and intelligence offered by NYPD FBI liaison Felix Ivanov revealed that Volken had connections with the United States Government following the collapse of the Nazi regime during the late 1940s through to the 1950s, however much of the information on Volken's work for the United States government had been lost." A click, and Volken's image is replaced by the depiction of a plaza in a European city.

"In the spring of 2009 following Kaizmir Volken's death in New York City, the CIA operating in tandem with NATO forces and the German government raided a bunker located in Berlin, Germany. This bunker was a central cell of the Vanguard operation, which were acting under standing orders in the presumed defeat of their central command, to sever all contact with other cells and go to ground. The discovery of this German cell was not only a validation of Agent Dahl's intelligence, but also a horrifying wake-up call about the capability of the Vanguard." A click from the device, and Sarisa pulls up the image of a subway system that was converted into a military bunker. On one of the tracks, an oblong structure the size of a city bus is tied down by rope and covered with a tarp.

"In this facility, codenamed Aflheim by the Vanguard, an operational intercontinental ballistic missile armed with a 20-megaton nuclear warhead was discovered. Designated Hugin by the Vanguard, this weapon was a part of what NATO and CIA investigations discovered was a "final solution" in this organization's persecution of the Evolved. Information obtained in Berlin revealed the existence of several Vanguard central cells across the world, each established directly by Kazimir Volken and operated by his lieutenants that did not follow him to his death in the United States." Then, with her tone deepening, Sarisa looks to the screen anxiously. "What we discovered in Berlin was that Hugin had a twin missile that had already been shipped out of the country. It's name, is Munin."

There might be an answer to Claire's hissed-out question, but then she's heading over to join her boyfriend, and Cardinal just shakes his head a little before returning his attention to the 'important people' going over everything. "Tell me something I don't know," he murmurs to himself, arms folding loosely over his chest, weight shifting a bit as he stands.

Candy eyes go over to Magnes for a moment or two, before her attention goes back to the debriefing that they are being given. Another cell of evolved haters, oh how fun. The good news, is that they don't seem to have to infiltrate it covertly. The woman couldn't handle any other assignment like that, likely whatever is left of her sanity spiraling out the window, and then god only knows what she might do. Maybe create another Atlantis… wouldn't that be awesome.

Regardless of what she may or may not do, Candy finally moves for the first time that she hasn't been led somewhere. Finding a chair and sitting in it, glass of water still clutched tightly in her hand. She's not giving up hope, or letting go of what has become to here, her one symbol of freedom in this place. She's winces a bit as she hears about a nuke, and then another one. Oh, the hysteria that would ensure. Wouldn't it be absolutely fun. She quickly curtails that line of thought, however, bad juju to be around so many people that work for some government or the other and that have weapons. They tend not to look kindly at people who would much rather just see the world burn.

Magnes leans over to whisper to Claire, though he continues listening quite intently. "We can go to the movies and walk down the street and anything else after this is over." But then Munin is mentioned, and he leans forward in his chair and peers quite noticably at Eileen, raising an eyebrow. "Um…" But he doesn't ask any questions, this is one of those times he's pretty sure he's supposed to shut up.

The name Munin draws a sharp exhalation of breath from Eileen, inaudible to anyone except the individual directly to the right of her, and that is all. She is otherwise silent, still apart from the almost imperceptible rise and fall of her shoulders and the pulse ticking at her neck.

Raith had little trouble getting through the briefing's introduction. Most of the briefing's introduction. The instant Berlin, and what was found there is brought up, the cool, collected expression on his face nearly melts away into nervous half-panic, like ice on a hot stove. But he maintains control, somehow. Legions of mindless goons? No problem. A bio-weapon? Sure, he bought that. They even had a scientist to manufacture it. But a nuke? A goddam, 20-megaton, MIRV-tipped thermonuclear missile? Raith was certain that even Kazimir Volken didn't have the resources to get something that big. Let alone a pair of them. And that isn't even the bad news.

The bad news is that the only mention of 'Munin' is that it had been taken out of Berlin. They don't know where it is. Vanguard had cells and safe houses and hiding places all over the world; they could literally be anywhere, and the last thing anyone needs right now is a band of nuclear-armed terrorists bent on genocide wandering the world without even having the courtesy to leave a forwarding address. Play time's over; all thoughts of revenge are put on the back-burner. They can wait.

But the irony? Aviators had to have known about this development. He was too good an operative not to know something this big. And if he had just said so from the start, that some of Volken's fundies could bring the finger of God down in any city in the world whenever they wanted to, and no one knew where they were? Raith probably would have snapped to attention right then and there and 'Yes Sir!'d himself straight to Hell trying to find them.

And the entire time he did that, he'd be smiling, happier than he'd been in a long time.

Sarisa clicks a button, changing the image to reveal the two-dimensional image of the Earth again, and then overlays a red line that moves from somewhere into Europe, crosses to the eastern side of South America in Brazil, crosses South America into Chile, and then moves up the western coast of Mexico entering the United States near California. "This path details the movement of a second intercontinental ballistic missile armed with a similar nuclear warhead, codenamed Munin. CIA investigation over the last year has tracked the missile's path where it originated in the town of Stepnogorsk in Kazakhstan, where it was discretely obtained by the Vanguard from a nuclear weapons storage facility along with Hugin in 2003. The weapons were moved to Berlin and stored. Munin was moved in 2006 by Kazimir Volken's orders overseas to South America entering somewhere south of Sao Paulo, Brazil and moving on an unknown route through Argentina and Chile before taking a presumed course up the western shores of the Pacific Ocean and into the United States…"

Another click zooms the map in on New Mexico, and Sarisa's expression darkens visibly. "We managed to track the weapon's shipment to a decommissioned missile silo purchased by a private company in 2004. The silo had been brought back into operational parameters and it is believed that the weapon was housed here until the winter of 2008. Interrogation of captured Vanguard assets and postcognitive investigation of the silo indicates that Volken authorized the shipment of the missile out of the silo and to an undisclosed fallback location codenamed Niflheim." For the first time to the ears of the Vanguard Remnant, there comes one of Kazimir's terms unfamiliar to them. Certainly, they'd heard him mention Niflheim, it was the name of the combat unit that hunted Grigori in Russia on that cold winter years ago. But the actual base Niflheim was never spoken of, never once.

A click of the remove zooms the image back out to a global display.

"In June of 2009, the Department of Defense enlisted the assistance of a former member of the Vanguard who was apprehended in the fall of the Aflheim facility in Berlin. Daiyu Feng, was to be utilized in a CIA Special Operation on American soil to locate and apprehend or execute the remaining Vanguard element in the United States and ascertain the location of the missing nuclear warhead…" Sarisa's eyes drift towards Eileen and then Raith in the crowd, and then back to the screens. "However, Daiyu went rogue shortly after beginning his assignment to pursue a personal vendetta against elements of the Vanguard in direct violation of the terms of his probation. A directive from the President, along with an agreement between the Anti-Vanguard Task Force established in April of 2009 terminated Daiyu Feng's involvement with the United States Government, and forced us to reconsider our plan of action."

A click from Sarisa's remote changes the display on the screen to a clock, counting down days, hours, minutes and seconds. "Information gathered from the Vanguard captured in Berlin and subsequent arrests has indicated that the nuclear weapon Munin will be used against an unknown terrestrial target following the 22nd of December of this year. We do not, however, have an exact date for the weapon's detonation, which means that both the warhead's location must be discovered and its disposal must be made immediately." Rubbing one hand over her forehead, Sarisa changes the image displayed on the screen to show four locations around the world highlighted in red boxes.

"With all this information, the Special Activities Division began to look into prospective rosters of individuals who may have knowledge f the Vanguard, its activities, and its members…" A depression of the device changes the image on all three screens to the desert of Utah, and a stock photo of what looks like a maximum security prison. "It was brought to the attention of the Department of Defense in June of 2009 that the civilians responsible for the defeat of the Vanguard and the salvation of billions of lives had been unlawfully and unrightfully imprisoned in a facility codenamed Moab in the American southwest. A facility that does not — legally — exist." A click of that same button, however, turns the image of the facility into a bowl-shaped crater in the ground, with only a single standing tower visible, and portions of it simply sheared away in a hemisphere. "Now it neither legally, or physically exists. By the time the names and designations of the detainees, and the very existence of the Moab Federal Penitentiary were made available to the pertinent elements of the DoD, the facility had already been destroyed in an unexplained evolved phenomenon, resulting in the disappearance of all of its prisoners, including the unlawfully imprisoned civilians that were integral to the Vanguard's defeat in February of 2009."

Motioning to the screens, Sarisa clicks the remote to reveal names and longitude/latitude coordinates above the hilighted locations. "These marked locations around the world represent the final known central cells of the Vanguard, and where our intelligence has indicated that former Vanguard upper echelon involved with the transportation of Munin still reside. We do not know if Munin will be present in one of these locations, or if information pertaining to the device is contained in these fortified locations. It will be up to the teams assigned to each region to ascertain the Vanguard's activities by meeting with local specialists who have been briefed on the situation."

'Went Rogue', 'unlawfully imprisoned civilians', all turns of phrase that stir a cynical little smile upon Cardinal's lips. Political terms meant to disguise the truth of the situation, even if everyone in the room either knows or suspects the truth. Well, almost everyone, probably. Richard may be overestimating certain people's distrust in the government.

The locations that show up on the screen are noted, though, his lips pursing in a frown then as he looksto each in turn, nodding slightly to himself.

The image of Moab brings a feral smile to her lips while she looks at it. That place is better off destroyed. Her body going slightly rigid however, as the image summons to mind even clearer images of Moab from when she spent her time in it. That unending thrist that haunted her every concious moment. Shuddering lightly she shakes her head to clear her mind, and tightens her grip on the cup that she is holdng.

Moving just enough so that she can lean down and whispers in Magnes' ear, a glance over at Sanderson that is just this side of a glare, as Claire informs him, "Magnes… we're on a boat.. a really big boat. Movies and streets are a wee bit far away. Even so.. I think I needs some sleep after all this crap." She straightens again in time to watch the maps flash across the screen barely able to take in the dizzying amount of information… So much for a sleep starved mind to comprehend.

"You think they'll let us sleep in the same place?" Magnes asks a bit boldly, but his voice raises above a whisper as he raises his hand again, feeling the need to contribute. "Is the atmosphere hot enough to make a nuke explode, or can they be safely thrown into space?"

Throughout the majority of the ordeal, Huruma has remained quiet and observant, absorbing what she must in what short amount of time she has been given. Some of this information she has been privy to, but some of it is very much new to her; some of it is also more familiar than some may imagine. As Sarisa progresses into explaining the initial setup of teams, it does snag Huruma's attention away from the screens. Her leg settles off of the other, arms slowly folding and chin lifting as she visibly looks the situation over again from that front row seat.

Though she still says nothing, Huruma's expression reads of a new curiosity- begging the answer to the question of aforementioned 'teams'. This pair cannot seriously want to put someone like Magnes into the same outfit? There is some disbelief, yes.

Right through South America, even; Raith's backyard. Given how little he knew of the organization's real motives, this is markedly less surprising than it otherwise might have been. Never mind that. His attention is fixed on the screens in front of him. Already, he's got a few guesses. And already, he's wondering why Magnes is even here. What convinced the CIA that Wonder Boy there was the perfect man for this job is completely beyond him. Is comic relief an essential part of this assignment? Does the nuke use some sort of diabolical (and insane) trigger mechanism that can only be disabled by the low-brow but lovable antics of a clown? Is he hear to carry the luggage?

Sarisa's eyes go wide when Magnes asks that question, and Autumn covers his face with one hand slowly. "Son…" Autumn murmurs into his palm, "you are under absolutely no conditions to so much as touch the device should it be discovered. Each team will be joined by a nuclear technician who'se very job it is to disarm Munin should it be found. Each specialist is armed with the information regarding the warheads and how to handle them, but we have reason to believe that the armaments Munin has been outfitted with could cause it to detonate — once activated — at the slightest disruption of even something as subtle as its temperature. We suspect it was a tamper-proof model developed at the tail end of the cold war, but in-person examination of the device will be required to identify that."

Sarisa wipes one hand over her mouth, eyes closed. "As the General said, under no circumstances are you to approach Munin should it be found, even if you suspect it is not armed."

Sarisa stares at Magnes for just a moment longer, then gives a side-long glance up to Lieutenant Sanderson who is hiding a smirk behind her hand again, and clicks the remote. The region highlighted in South America is zoomed in. "Somewhere in the mountains of western Argentina is the Vanguard bunker Svartalfheim. According to our intelligence, this facility is a former French military instillation from the France-Argentine war in the 1980s. Information on this bunker provided by the French government indicates that it was a self-sustainable camouflaged military facility capable of serving as a landing site for aircraft with Vertical Takeoff and Landing capabilities. However, the French government was unable to furnish us with the bunker's exact location due to missing information in their national database. The bunker was protected upon completion by anti-aircraft guns and Surface to Air Missile batteries that may still be operational, making an aerial approach to the base once discovered infeasible."

Another click brings up the image of a clean cut man with dusky skin and a prominent nose that offsets his receding hairline. "The individuals deployed to Argentina are designate Team Alpha and will be met by DHS contact Stewart Ross upon deployment, who will fill this team in with the necessary information regarding Vanguard operations in South America."

Sarisa presses the button on the remote again and the view zooms out from Argentina, scrolls the map of the earth, and zooms in down on an island off the east coast of Africa. "Located in the capital city Antananarivo on the island of Madagascar is the Vanguard base codenamed Muspelheim. The country of Madagascar is currently under martial law and prohibiting foreign entry into the country due to a coup-de-t'at by General Edmond Rasoul. It was confirmed by interrogation of captured Vanguard operatives in Berlin that General Rasoul is a high-ranking non-evolved member of the Vanguard and is now in command of the entire military of the nation of Madagascar. Due to the violence and genetic cleansing within the country and a prohibition on foreign travel, entry in to the island of Madagascar will be an extremely dangerous covert operation…"

At those words, General Autumn gives an uncomfortable sound and covers his mouth with one hand. "The CIA in conjunction with the United States Marine Corps attempted an unofficial approach of Madagascar with the original Team Bravo two weeks ago. However, after the airport in Analalava was secured by US Marines, contact with Team Bravo was lost and they are all believed to have been killed in action. As a result, a smaller team is being sent in this time to secure contact with the Madagascar Liberation Front, a civilian freedom-fighting organization. Contact will be made in the city of Mandritsara with an MLF operative named Dajan Dunsimi. This will require an unaided trek upriver after entry into the country's northwestern coast near Analalava. Lieutenant Sanderson and three members of the United States Marines 141 will be accompanying you on Team Bravo's insertion into Madagascar."

"Munin will arm itself if its systems believe it's being tampered with," speaks - not one of the nuclear experts or ex-Vanguardites, but Richard Cardinal, one hand lifting in a vague sort of gesture as he lifts his voice so it can carry, "So I'd listen to the man, if I were you, unless you enjoy the idea of rather swiftly becoming a cloud of radioactive vapor."

That said, the shadowman drops silent once more, just listening to the remainder of the briefing.

Candy blinks at what she is told, and shakes her head a little. Thinking to herself, 'God, I hope I'm not going to Madagascar, that sounds like a suicide mission'. Her hands looking down at the water in her cup, still not taking a drink of it, even as it has, by now, gone luke warm. Her little piece of security not likely to be discared at all. Though, her attention is taken to Magnes after his little outburst, and she just blinks. Looking back up at the podium, she just hopes that he doesn't distract the woman much longer. This meeting is turning out to be long enough, and Candy wants a nice long shower, where she can use her powers again. Its tough having to actually scrub yourself…

Annnnd her boyfriend had to open his mouth, Claire gives a small sigh, her eyes rolling skyward briefly, yet a small amused smirk is on her lips. She has a high tolerance level for Magnes. The mention of Madagascar grabs Claire's attention, and she listens intently. Her lips press into a thin line and a small glare goes to Sanderson.. Oh joy. is the blonde regenerators thought, though her expression is rather unhappy.

"We're gonna be on the same team, right?" Magnes asks as his grip tightens a bit around Claire's waist. Though of course she doesn't know the answer, he has that tone that says he's probably not going to let the issue go. "If you end up having to go to that place, there's no…" But then he remembers, she made him kill her, and, well. "Nevermind." There's worse things than death, but, he has to show at least some trust that she can handle herself.

Cardinal receives a quizzical look from Eileen, both her dark brows arching into an expression that borders between consternation and intrigue. She'd been listening to Sarisa, all right; neither soldier nor nuclear physicist, her value is limited to what knowledge she possesses about the Vanguard, and it's a little disconcerting to realize that someone else in the crowd — Jensen Raith excluded — may be more useful in this capacity than she and her birds are. The fine hairs on the back of her neck and hair bristle, but her voice is carefully neutral and her tone crisp and polite when she asks him, very primly, "And just how do you know about Munin?"

There we are. Huruma has been waiting for the most obvious location for her to eventually come up. Not one to stereotype herself, it simply makes the most sense. The assumption is a reasonable one, given that Huruma apparently recognizes the names of locations being described. There is a flicker of distaste- borne of something more uncomfortable than anything- during a certain part of it, but hopefully Mandritsara will be very brief and she will not have to address the stranger personally. For her, a westerner in Madagascar either has no viable business there, or has found himself with no other option.

"Your first team disappeared, an'so now you are sending another while Bongani is a frog-hop away?" Huruma's voice has an odd echo in the hangar, and for a second it sounds like it is coming off of everything. Nobody really expected her to speak anyway, did they? Whether or not Eileen and Cardinal continue their moment, Huruma has other things on her mind. "Though I suppose wit'a tropical storm nearing- the General will'ave more t'wory about than you all, hm?"

It's not good when teams go missing, but Raith doesn't sweat it too much. It happens. Sometimes, it means there's a mole. Sometimes, life just deals you a bad hand. "Sir, at this particular point in time," the ex-soldier, ex-spy, present-terrorist begins, finally speaking, "I only have three questions that matters to all of us present, and that is when we will be deployed, how we will be inserted, and what equipment and support can se expect to receive before and once we're in?" It's not clear which 'sir' he's addressing; he'll leave that for them to sort out. All he's interested in is more details. Namely, how long he has before his life starts to really suck, and how much of a fight they're going to let him put up.

Both Sarisa and Autumn look to Raith when he speaks up, and there's a quirk of the General's head to the side followed by a smirk. Sarisa, ultimately, is the one who answers the query. "Your team leader will fill you in on the details of your armaments, but I know your team will be traveling lightly." Her blue eyes sweep to Huruma, followed by a razor-thin smile.

"And you're absolutely right about the storm, it's a window of opportunity that will put us at something of an advantage for insertion into the country. I think the lot of you are starting to get an idea as to what is expected of you now and why some of you were chosen." Looking from the Huruma to Raith and then o the screen, another click to the remote is made, and the screen zooms out again, this time panning up to western Russia and zooming in on a single city. "We already have en-route, Team Charlie, which has been deployed to the city of Ryazan just outside of Moscow, Russia. Information on Vanguard operations in Russia is extremely limited at this date, but it is believed that this country holds a fortification of unknown designation that may be one of the organization's oldest strongholds. Members of Team Charlie will rendezvous with Company contact Ivan Spektor at his home outside of Ryazan after arrival. From here, Spektor will debrief Team Charlie on their activities within Russia and his knowledge of the local situation."

"Lastly…" a click and a flash zooms out the image to a global scale, panning east and zooming back in on a region of China. "Team Delta has already been deployed to investigate reports of a Vanguard facility in Shanghai, China. Team Delta departed sixteen hours ago for Shanghai." A look is given to one of the soldiers standing by from Sarisa, and the clean-cut young man moves to a large plastic case set beside the table, turns it on its side and hoists it up atop the table, popping the latches open to reveal a molded foam interior holding small electronic devices.

"Members of all foreign teams will be given a secure communications device. This device allows for instantaneous satellite uplink to the CIA's command center for Operation Apollo and miss Kershner. While these devices operate on state of the art encryption methods, they are not to be considered foolproof from electronic countermeasures. We have no confirmation of Vanguard technopaths, however a lack of intelligence is not a lack of presence. Each team leader will be afforded one such communications device, and each team member will be given short-range communication headsets to keep in touch with each other. It is recommended to keep communication on these devices to a minimum and as vague as possible due to the ever-present risk of eavesdropping by all forms."

"Additionally…" General Autumn chimes in, looking to Raith when he does, "this is a strictly covert operation. Outside of contacts established in each of the nations you will largely not be operating with the welcome of the local governments where law and order is still maintained. The United States Government will not acknowledge your participation in this operation while it is ongoing and you will receive no outside assistance due to the sensitive nature of the operations at hand, and the lack of clearance with foreign governments necessary to facilitate legitimate military operations within these nations. We are in a situation of global nuclear threat at the moment, and we cannot afford subversive elements of the Vanguard in any nation to take advantage of unknown security breaches that could facilitate failure of Operation Apollo. Failure is not an option. Each of the teams deploying today will be accompanied by a nuclear weapons specialist trained in handling the warhead we are searching for in the even that it is discovered. While the type of warhead that we believe Munin may be cannot be disarmed traditionally, these specialists are equipped with the education and tools necessary to properly defuse the situation."

Sarisa tenses as Autumn speaks, then turns to look back at the gathered crowd. "You will now be divided into your teams and mobilized to your regions of engagement. Lieutenants Abraham and Sanderson will be respectively deploying teams Alpha and Bravo as team leaders. Jensen Raith, Magnes Varlane, and Richard Cardinal, you will be deploying immediately as a part of Alpha Team to Argentina, a C-130 is waiting for you above decks. You will be joining Agent Veronica Sawyer and a civilian ability augmentor Gillian Childs, both of whom have already made landfall. Lieutenant Abraham will brief you on your armaments and insertion en-route."

"Huruma, Gabriel Gray, Eileen Ruskin, Claire Bennet and Candace Allard, you are Bravo Team." Sarisa's blue eyes meet each of the team one by one, "You will be joined by Lieutenant Sanderson, Sargent Barton, and Corporals Copeland and Dixon for deployment at 18:00 hours tomorrow. Lieutenant Sanderson will show you to your quarters and then get you familiarized with the munitions and armaments you will be bringing into Madagascar."

That ever so polite question in the direction of the shadowman gets a faint smile from him, one brow arching towards the brim of Cardinal's hat. "It's my job to know things like this, Eileen," he observes in mild, almost amused tones, "I thought you would've realized that by now."

Then they're down to the nitty gritty of the mission, and he turns his attention sharply to Sarisa and Autumn. The names revealed for his team draw the other brow up, and he slants a thoughtful look across the room to the King of Swords, and to Magnes. "Well, well," he murmurs to himself, "This will be an interesting trip."

Candy blinks as she hears where she'll be going, and she mentally groans. On the plus side, she gets to work in the rain, and the rain always makes her happy. Given the nature of her power, she may even be able to help the team keep a decent cover under the rain. Her mind is already working, thinking on how she can use the rain to her advantage, and to make sure that she makes it out alive. If everyone else manages to survive as well it'll be icing on the cake.

Still clinging to her glass of water, she takes a look at who will be going with her. Noting names and faces, and matching them to each other. Though, she already knew who Gabriel was. "Let's just hope we can survive this… though, don't give me any guns. Just as liabel to shoot myself or a team mate with one of those thin. Much prefer the control over my powers," she mutters to herself. Though, when you can make people pretty much explode with a thought, the time it takes to pull a trigger seems to be a bit of a wasted moment.

With the tightening of his grip, Claire doesn't have the heart to tell him that she is indeed going to that place, the information about the place given to her is tucked away in her backpack. Claire glances down at Magnes thoughtfully and gives him a small smile, her own hope being he doesn't end up there, as much as she's going to hate letting him go again. At least she's seen he's safe and not locked up anymore.

As the mention of the teams and their departure times, Claire's hand grips Magnes' shoulder. Already?! Not even time to really talk. She glances down at Magnes and gives him a sad smile. "I guess I'll see you when this is all done, huh?" Her smile falls away, her tone serious, she gives his shoulder a bit of a shake to make sure he looks at her, "You better stay safe. Also listen to and do what Richard tells you."

Claire looks away then her eyes moving to Gabriel, her jaw clenching…She is not happy about being teamd with him and she doesn't hide it. It was definitely going to be a long month with very little sleep for the ex-cheerleader.

"Claire…" Magnes stands, because if either of them dies, well, he doesn't want this to be some half-assed sitting down thing. He's very unsteady for a moment, then he moves to wrap his arms around her for a passionate kiss in front of everyone.

Either Eileen is satisfied by Cardinal's answer or she's been cowed into silence by the assignment Sarisa has just given her. She does not press the point, does not shoot back at him with whatever follow-up question she might have been balancing on the tip of her tongue in preparation for her response. Her eyes are purposefully averted from Magnes and Claire and remain that way, one pale cheek turned away to give them a facade of privacy.

She's British. Public displays of affection make her feel twisty and weird inside.

He's been listening quietly all the while, with the amount of attention one affords a decent movie. All Gabriel needs is the popcorn. When his name is spoken, his chin ticks up, listening with keen ears as to what corner of the world he's being thrown in as well as with whom. Rather than spend another useless glance Eileen's way— which would have included the puzzled squint at her profile upon her question pointed off towards Cardinal— Gabriel tries, through the process of elimination, to pick out his team.

So Candy gets looked towards after a meandering guess, head tilting in a birdish gesture as he leans forward, elbows against his knees. He manages to catch those muttered words, and responds with, "A little rain never hurt anybody." A more fox-sly glance is reserved especially for Claire, but—

To be honest, it's more affectation than genuine glee for her poor luck. It's not exactly Gabriel's picnic either. Still, a tight-jawed glare is going to be met with a bright smile from the Midtown Man, canine and shining white. That is, of course, before she is swooped up into the arms of her hero, to which Gabriel rolls his eyes ceilingwards and sits up in his seat. Restlessly, he awaits the meeting's conclusion, taciturn to the finish.

Huruma knows of Gabriel, and of Eileen- to a degree. At least she suspects they will ultimately be useful- her eyes search for the only other girls left- who she assumes are Claire and Candace by elimination. Part of her is very thankful for the presence of Marines, and yet another part is still irked that she is the only one of the initial five to have any reusable experience. On one hand, she is pretty much going into Madagascar with people who have no clue. On the other hand, Huruma will probably be able to assert a high place in the pecking order because of it. Marines or no marines. Her faith in that giggling one is not much. That girl had best have balls of steel.

When the tall woman rises to her feet, the movement is distracted by Magnes- well, because that is distracting, isn't it? So she announces something to herself to break apart that stupidly pregnant moment that Magnes causes. "Poritra aho."

That seems conclude just about everything for the time being. But despite it, Raith still has one final question, especially considering that he's due to head out any minute now. "Sir. Will ours be a HALO insertion?" If it is, Magnes had better snap out of whatever drugs they've got him on, because if he's sober and alert, they might not even need parachutes. And, of course, Raith makes a point of ignoring whatever it is that Magnes is doing at the moment; he's a city kid, and so's Cardinal, when you think about it. Neither one of them knows the first thing about surviving in the wilderness.

Giving a side-long look to Claire, Lieutenant Sanderson offers a hesitant smile as she folds her hands behind her back and glances away from the couple towards Sarisa and General Autumn. There's a look from Sarisa to the General, one brow raised. Jensen may wonder if she's silently asking for permission to execute Magnes where he stands, but the flight of fancy is contained behind the predatory and yet impish smile she briefly flashes Raith instead when Autumn shakes his head. Varlane is his problem now.

"No, Jensen. Thankfully Argentina isn't as bad of a hotbed as Madagascar. We'll be taking the day's difference to prep Bravo Team for their insertion into the country. Get your bootson the ground, Raith, Lieutenant Abraham will have the rest of the details for you." With that final deployment order made, Sarisa clicks the remote and blanks out the screen, looking to the group even as Lieutrnant Abraham picks up the olive-drab canvas bag at his feat and slings it over his shouldering it quietly. "If any of you have issue with this task at hand and refuse to participate, please wait here while the others deploy. We have barely four weeks of operation time to secure Munin and prevent a potentially catastrophic loss of life." Sarisa's blue eyes narrow as she nods her head once to the crowd.

"You have your orders…" Autumn adds at the end in an authoritative tone of voice, followed by what may truly be the most sound things offered here during this meeting.

"…and Good Hunting."

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