Reaching Out


elisabeth_icon.gif len_icon.gif

Scene Title Reaching Out
Synopsis Len gets an unexpected phone call.
Date August 28, 2009

She can leave today… when Deckard comes a little later, she'll be fully healed and ready to leave the safehouse. Although in truth, right now Elisabeth is not sure she'll ever be ready to leave the safehouse. Just the thought of stepping outside those doors, back into a world where someone from Humanis First might see her, might realize that somehow she survived, might sneak up on her? It's a paralyzing fear. Sitting upright in a plush armchair she has managed somehow to pull her feet up into the chair and curl herself into a tiny little ball within it, her hands — one of them holding her cell phone — on top of her knees while she tries to decide if she's going to make this call or not.

Finally… slowly… Elisabeth flips her phone open and pushes the buttons that will make Len Denton's phone ring on the other end. She almost hangs up before it can connect. And then she steels herself and lets it ring.

Len Denton actually plans to not be at Fort Hero at all today. He left base first thing in the morning and is driving in his Jeep. To be honest, he's actually on his way to pick up a tux. Damn fancy shindigs. He probably should have had one by now, but normally he finds ways to avoid these types of events. This one is far too important to pass on. As he makes a left hand turn, he hears his phone ringing and reaches up to hit the hands-free device.


"It's Harrison," comes Elisabeth's voice down the line. She sounds… not quite herself. Not as brisk, as businesslike as she's attempting to project. "Sorry it took so long to get back to you," she apologizes lamely. As if that was in any way in her control. Richard told her he'd spoken to Denton, so she's aware that he knows where she's been, but…. apologizing just seems like the thing to do. The polite thing. The 'normal' thing.

The moment he hears her voice, he makes a sharp hasty right hand turn down an alley and puts the Jeep into park. The voice on the phone the previous day didn't tell him much, so there's quite a bit of leeway in what Len might THINK happened to Harrison. He reaches for his phone, diconnecting the hands free device and pulls it to his ear. "You've nothing to apologize for."

Then nothing. For once, Len Denton is at a loss for words. "I.." What to say. It's not like he knows her that well, but then again he has a great respect for her. She's always seemed to strong and determined but now she sounds.. frail. There's so much he wants to know, but he's not going to put her through the ordeal of telling him what happened. "Is someone taking care of you?" He finally asks.

There's a soft huff of laughter. "That's a loaded question right about now," Elisabeth replies bitterly. "But yes… someone's looking out for me." A number of someones in point of fact. On her end, Elisabeth's eyes skim restlessly around the room. The chair is pushed back into the corner, tight to the wall on two sides where she can face the room and see the door. "I, uhm…. you didn't really say what you found," she offers. "Wish I could add more to your intel …. but if they ever tell you that they'll kill a hostage or something? You should believe them. They're not fucking around. You should take these people very seriously, Denton. You might think Phoenix and their ilk are terrorists?" She shakes her head a little, the phone making that rubbing sound as her face brushes the microphone. "They're babies playing at a little civil disobedience with a lot of property damage thrown in. Humanis First? Think bin Laden on our soil."

"I am getting that impression. Honestly, I have a shit load of information on that name you gave me. He's the real deal, Harrison. There is no bullshit in that man. I've got a couple of leads that I'm going to follow up on, but right now this is all unofficial and just me at this point." Len leans back against the leather upholstery in his Jeep as he shakes his head. "We've got problems. Serious ones. I actually have seen this man before. He was at the Suresh Center Grand Opening. I can only imagine what he was doing there." There might be some hesitancy in Len's voice. Should he really be dumping all this information on her now? But it just flows out of him, though a bit uneasily.

"Yeah… I heard he was there. Other people are also looking at the situation, and they warned the director some time ago." Liz heard about that before the nasty boys grabbed her. In truth, it sounds sort of like dealing with 'cop' business might actually be easier than the rest. "I, uhm… I can add the name 'Doug' to your list of names, but no last name. And I can't describe anyone. They kept the blindfold on the whole time." Her voice wobbles slightly and she makes every effort to steady it. "I might, if you get someone in custody, be able to voice-ID them." There are certain things she'll never forget.

"It seems small to ask how you are. And I am not going to ask you what happened, but I would like to know at some point, if there's someone who can contact me who is in the know, Harrison." Len's hat comes off and is set down in the passenger's seat as he leans forward and places his forehead against the top of the steering wheel.

"If you have someone who wants to work with me on this, give them this number. It's secure enough for what needs to be done. My agents are all tapped at the moment, and so I'm doing most of the legwork myself." He doesn't mention Dahl is doing most of the information gathering, if only because there are probably some bad feelings there. "I may take some time off to pursue this. I just am not sure I an equipped to do it alone."

Shifting her weight in her seat just barely, Elisabeth hesitates. "They…." The shaking has already started. She can't bring herself to start listing it all. "T.. t…torture," she finally manages to force out past the tremors. "Then blew my out." Her teeth clench. "I c..c..can't…. " She drops it, she can't say more, it's very clear. She sucks in a ragged breath and changes the subject. "Do not go out there on your own. They have people … everywhere. You have to assume… even DHS is not immune. The PD isn't secure. Anyplace anti-Evo sentiment… there's going to be people who…" Yeah… a little paranoia here.

His voice is soft when he speaks. "Stop. You don't have to talk about it. Not to me. Not now." Len hushes her as he rocks his head from side to side, his forehead on the wheel. "Look. I'll make the offer. If you need to talk to someone, we have someone we use. She works with Colby Martinez, Magnes Varlane and Minea Dahl. I'll send you her number and you tell her I sent you. When you're ready, you hear? Don't worry about any of this."

Len's hand is on the wheel his knuckles white as her words start to sink in. He realizes he could have members of Humanis First within his organization. It's why he needs to do this all off the books. Nothing Minea has given him has been documented. "You tell whoever you have over there that if they want in to call me.

Colby. God, the name brings up so many memories… squad car memories, bawdy locker room jokes, dinner at the Martinez house. Ariel…. dear God, ARIEL. Elisabeth muffles a sound behind her hand as the tears, so near the surface all the time right now, begin again. She pulls the phone away from her ear and buries her face in her knees, trying to take deep breaths to calm down again. It's not the first time over the past several days that the bass thrum of sound, barely on the edge of human hearing, has passed through the safehouse. The door to her room opens and a feminine voice can be heard to ask, "Liz?" The sound of the door closing again as apparently the blonde waved them out… or perhaps just waved them to be silent. The phone slides back onto her ear. "Denton…. I'll pass the message. And I might… take you up on that." Her voice is choked. "I, uhm… I don't know if I can report any of this. I'm still… weighing the consequences. I was kind of… off the books… when they picked me up."

"Don't worry. Nothing you tell her will be reported." Len lifts his head and glances up towards the sky between the two buildings on either side of him as he sits in the alleyway as if questioning the God he grew up worshipping about what He could possibly be thinking. It's not his place to question, but he does it none the less. "Have someone call me, and take care of yourself." He starts to tell her to call him when she's feeling better, but.. who knows when the hell that'll be. And what's better? "You have my number if you need anything. Anything at all." One thing she doesn't have to ask for is justice. He's already working on that one.

There's a long pause on the far end while Elisabeth bites her lip. And she says quietly, "There are days, Denton… when I wonder if the things I've done are the wrong choices. Kat used to…. " She chokes a little and then continues, "Kat used to think I was far too much an idealist." There's a watery chuckle. "She ever tell you that she threatened to disappear a couple of cops when they thought it'd be fun to rough up the Evo woman in the stairwell?" She pauses and comments, "I'm really, really glad in some ways that she is not alive to see this. Because I have a feeling that she'd get herself killed going after these fuckers… Don't you do the same. I'll pass your message, but … I can't promise anything, Denton."

"I never met her. But I'll do what I can to be careful. You have my word." He reluctantly hits the red button that hangs up the phone and he shakes his head. Len pulls out of the alleyway and takes the right hand turn back out onto the street. It's been a while since he had to do any actual field work, but he doesn't see any other choices in the matter.

Things have gotten too far out of hand.

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