Rooftop Serenade


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Scene Title Rooftop Serenade
Synopsis Cat and Helena discuss the state of each other's lives. With song!
Date November 14, 2008

New York Public Library: Rooftop

Maybe she knows Helena is up here, maybe she doesn't. Either way, the entrance to the roof of this building opens and Cat steps through, bringing her guitar and a small amp along for the trip. Is she intending to play here? That may well be. Sounds herald her arrival, those of the door opening and closing followed by heeled boots on the solid surface as she makes her way toward the edge.

Helena is seated near the edge, looking out and over the city. Most of Midtown is dark, but in the distance there are lights. The air is chilly, but around Helena it is warm. With a look over her shoulder at the sound of someone arriving on the roof, she looks over her shoulder. "Hey Cat." A pause. "What are you doing?"

"Checking out the skyline," Cat replies as her steps get closer, "thinking of playing music up here, and looking for you, Stormy." The steps get closer, stopping when she's close enough to feel that warmth Helena's created, as she lets her eyes wander across the cityview ahead.

"I'd love to hear you play, but out here it's a bad idea. Music carries, and this is supposed to be a secret hide-out. There are some soundproof rooms in the library for studying, and I'm sure there are places to play downstairs with enough room for folks to gather that are safe and won't carry past the walls, as well." Helena looks regretful, music in the open night air would have been neat. "Whatcha need?"

"That's why it was a thought not yet in practice," Cat replies with a grin. She turns partway to face the blonde, musing for a moment. "Though maybe acoustic guitar would be quiet enough to not escape the roof." A pause is taken, and a slow breath, before she states "We've gotten sidetracked. You do know the thing of pulling you onstage is and will be open."

Helena blinks. "Pulling me onstage? For what, to sing? I used to karaoke with Claire. West would get us sloshed and we'd do ABBA."

"Yes," Cat answers simply. "We never got to make it happen. We can, if you want." A slow grin breaks out. "Abba? That's interesting."

Helena says ruefully, "I think I probably need to be a bit sparing about showing my face in highly public venues." But then, "It was a thing. ~You can dance, you can ji-ive, having the time of your life! See that girl, watch that scene, diggin' the dancing queen!~ She has a light voice, somewhere in the range of mezzo soprano.

The grin widens. "Not bad," Cat offers. "I wouldn't kick you offstage. I knew that the night we were headed back to Dorchester. Joan Jett, then." Just before the night turned to a mountain of crap. Turning, she rests her back against the edge to face the blonde fully. "I miss being able to talk with you, just relax like that."

"I miss just relaxing." Helena says ruefully. "But we're not in crisis mode, and I'm grateful for that."

"How are you holding up, with everything, Stormy?" Cat asks quietly. "I think you might be like me. Not letting things out in front of witnesses. Avoiding anything that could look like signs of weakness. Might be why you come out to the roof alone."

"There are things I can't afford to think about." Helena concedes. "I just try to deal with what's in front of me, you know?" Helena pushes back some of her hair. "Like getting a date for the miracles project. Which reminds me in a roundabout way, Conrad's probably going to come looking for you."

"Been there, done that," Cat replies quietly. "But you know I've got your back, Stormy. We won't always agree, and I'm vocal when I disagree. That's valuable; often leaders are only told what others think they want to hear. Thing is, I don't intend we disagree in front of witnesses." She lapses into quiet, thoughtful over the course of a few heartbeats, before asking "Is he? That's interesting."

Helena nods. "Well, you've got all the lists in your head and stuff. He's been put in charge of security. He's actually a little scary…which means of course, that he's perfect for the job. And I trust him, so did Cam."

A slow nod. "So many things are about stagecraft and presentation. Leadership, musical performance, security. If he's intimidating, people are more likely to follow his directions and protocols. I'll fill him in when he finds me. Or I'll find him first for the purpose. But… am I up to date?" Cat returns to calmly speculative silence.

Helena simply repeats, "I deal with what's in front of me." She shrugs. She thinks she knows what Cat might be fishing for. She doesn't want to talk about it.

Moving forward, Cat asks "How in the loop are Teo and some of the others, Stormy? He and I talked last night for a bit after the others left, and I mentioned research into plants. He seemed to believe I was speaking of what happened with Abby, when I was meaning artwork about plants. I still haven't found anything about that other one, even after having a look into newly discovered species that haven't been much written about yet. I didn't say anything to change his thoughts."

Helena rubs her nose. "They're as in the loop as I can make them. It's hard to keep track of everything."

She nods. "So it's not a problem letting him and others in on that? I wanted to make contact and ask before saying anything, in case it was for a reason. You did see what I sent about my private radiation check around the crater, also, yes?" Cat's eyes focus on the roof door for a moment.

"No, it should be fine." Helena takes her hands away from her face. "I did." she admits. "I'm just not sure what it means. And there's been a lot influx of people and plans to make and people leaving and changes in how things are run."

"You're all good, Stormy. My results just mean the crater area isn't radiation free, we can't embarrass the government over having kept something like that secret. Those plants have some significance, my eyes are open and watching for any sign of what it might be." Cat's eyes settle on Helena's face again as she continues. "I'll be looking into lodgings for Brian, Teo said he could use some help."

"We do have beds here." Helena says. "But I know people probably want to stay places that are more um, home-like."

"It's not a problem," Cat answers with a slight smile. "I've got money."

Helena lets out a little laugh. "Were you able to keep your place, or did you have to move?" Her gaze becomes solemn. "I'm sorry about that."

"Nothing to be sorry for," Cat replies with a chuckle, "and we're still there. I know whose fault that was, and I'm certain we'll one day explain it to him, repay the debt with interest." Her expression hardens a bit there, she's got steel in her eyes on speaking of it; one might think she's picturing Sylar with his head on a pole.

Helena nods. "Good." Helena seems momentarily ill at ease, but her smile restores promptly. "Did you have anything else for me?"

"That's all," Cat replies. And with business over, she studies Helena for a moment with a smile forming. "So, Abba. Are you deep into seventies tunes, or is that the most of it, Stormy?"

Helena can't help it, she chuckles. "Just ABBA." she assures. "My mom adored them. And West somehow finds Claire and I duetting to Waterloo to be the most awesome thing ever." Her smile grows momentarily tight, but more or less stays on her face.

"Are you familiar with Heart? Pat Benatar? I've had a thing for them since I first heard them play. Nancy's guitar, Anne's voice. Pat's too. They're rocking women, something I found there really wasn't enough of in the world. I'm twenty-six now, since the twelfth, it's maybe odd most of the music I like is older than I am."

"Did Heart do the one about the dude in the dreams? And I know a couple of Pat Benatar…my mom liked her a lot too." Helena laughs. "I do have taste suited to my age. Angels and Airwaves, Death Cab For Cutie, Paramore."

"That's them," Cat replies. "These Dreams, it was called. One of their best pieces is Barracuda. The story behind it. They were just starting out, and their record company pulled a stunt trying to make it look like Ann and Nancy were really lesbian lovers. One day at a function a reported blindsided Ann with it, and pissed her off. The result was a classic angry tune." Cat draws in a deep breath and starts to sing. "You lie soooo low in the weeds, I bet you wanna ambush me. You'd have me down, down, down on my knees, wouldn't ya, barracuda!"

Helena claps accordingly, apparently quite delighted to have her own private concert. Then, "You've seen Danielle lately, right?"

After she finishes, there's a brief consulting of memory. "Angels and Airwaves; Everything's Magic. And Paramore… from Tennessee. I like Hayley Williams' voice." Cat's smile broadens, maybe becoming a little giddy. Images of good twenty-sixth birthday togetherness are replayed. "I've seen her," she answers. "Oh, yes."

"Good." Helena keeps it short and sweet, but she's pleased that Cat is pleased. "I think I'm going to go back in now. Staying or going?"

"I'm headed in too," Cat replies. Inside there can be playing guitar, practicing archery and maybe teaching Helena more of that art, or both.

November 14th: Blessed are the Doomed
November 14th: The Right Choice
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