Sauna Strategy


alec_icon.gif cat_icon.gif

Scene Title Sauna Strategy
Synopsis Alec has a way of preventing electronic monitoring.
Date April 16, 2009

A sauna at a gym somewhere in Manhattan

It's mid-morning when she makes the call, pulling up the number he gave her and tapping it in on the iPhone screen. Earbuds in place, Cat continues along her way while she waits for the other end to pick up. She's casually dressed, jeans and a hooded sweatshirt with sneakers. Backpack to one shoulder, guitar case over the other. "So, Mr. Bonder," she muses to herself while listening to the ringing from the target number, "what secrets are you still keeping?"

Inquiring Cats want to know. Or at least this one.

The 'ringing' is actually Bach Fugue for Cello in G minor, which ain't a bad ring tone if you're a fan. He picks up, "Go for Bonder." he barks into it in the manner that all men with to little time and to much to do seem to when answering a phone. Beyond him are the vague sounds of an argument taking place, something about placement of a 'zen garden'. Before Cat can speak Alec sighs, "Hold on." there's a muffle sound as if pressing the phone to his chest before he bellows, "No fucking Zen Garden in the new housing projects, man up, unknot your panties and deal with! But put some room on the roof for a vegtable garden instead. Managable people! This isn't the Ritz." then he's back, "Sorry about that, who is this?"

"Obviously not the Ritz either, Mr. Bonder," Cat replies dryly. "Nor the Zen Garden. Buddhism is so not my thing." There's silence for a few seconds, after which she states "We should meet. Tell me a quiet place where business can be discussed in privacy near whatever building site you're overseeing now, please."

Alec is quiet for a moment, "Ah. Took me a moment to place the voice. Ms. Wilson." his tone conveys his amussment at her onetime chosen phseudonym. "Sure. There's a gym down here, sauna seems a good place." a door closes in that background and the chatter instantly cuts off. Ostensibly he's alone now, "Work for you?"

She chuckles lightly. "Mr. Bonder, I do wonder if your real goal is to see me in just a towel, sir." There's more pause as Cat continues along wherever she is. "Is that your plan? I had rather thought there might be a quiet corner of a building site to take advantage of."

Alec's chuckle seems genuinely amussed, "I thought you'd appreciate the potential security of the sauna." he doesn't wish to go into details on the phone, but he made the offer, "Very well. There's an abandoned store front we're renivating next week into a clinic, I'm scheduled to do a walk through today at around seven." he gives the address, "No one else around for at least a hundred yards or so. About as private as you get in this city without risking radiation poisoning."

"Seven," she replies. Cat is busy then, potentially. It seems the sauna is gaining points in that regard. "When are you available at the gym?"

Alec chuckles, "Until seven." he states, "I can leave here under the guise of client shmoozing, but I still have to be at the other sight by seven so as not to raise alarms. It's a whole sign in thing. I could fake it if I had to, but I'd rather keep as much distance between my lives as possible."

"Meaning you can be in that sauna in an hour, then," Cat surmises as she changes course for a store nearby. A bathing suit is needed for this encounter, damned if she's going to do the towel thing. "Tell me the location, please," she requests.

Alec rattles off the address, "Sign in as a guest, I'll leave word for them at the desk that I'm expecting a Ms. Wilson to be joining me. It's a private gym." of course.

"See you then, Mr. Bonder," she informs. The call ends then, and the store is visited.

Just under an hour later she arrives at the gym and signs in, then partakes of the locker room to change. From there it's just a few minutes before she, in a muted blue one piece, enters the sauna with hair tied into a ponytail.

Alec sits inside in a pair of those fancy swimmers trunks that the hardcore guys wear, the sort that a clingy and don't fit the technical definition of 'trunks'… more like stylized briefs made of spandex. At least his are modest. Ish. He eyes her and waits for the door to close, "Am I to assume you're here under some sort of official unofficial business?" at least he's not wearing a wire… in what he's got on she could see it.

"I have some curiosities to address," says she, settling onto the bench. There's less exposed skin than he might have hoped for, but it does the trick of making it unlikely she has any hidden transmitters or weapons on her person. "I have to say you've proven unexpectedly resourceful and cautious, sir." Cat doesn't look at him but briefly in her entrance.

Alec motions around the room, "Sound proof and the steam in the air is clorinated, conducts electricity, makes wearing a wire impossible." he states, his reasoning for picking the sauna, "Pools are good, but to many people potentially listening in. Smaller venue, easier to control potential eavesdroppers." he eyes her, "I was taught by the best, and it helps that I'm naturally a bit paranoid." the steam in the room kicks up a bit as he pours water on the stones inside, hey, might as well get a good sweat on while they're in here right? Two birds, one stone and all that.

"Counter-investigating the person investigating you," Cat remarks calmly, "shows security consciousness in itself." Her head tilts back against the surface behind her. "Who is your benefactor?" the operative inquires. Several possibilities are running through her mind. That mysterious faction Teo mentioned among them.

Alec shakes his head, "Wouldn't help you if I told you. I'm fairly certain he's never given me his real name. Known him for years though. He's an honorable man, in his own way. He works alone, with the rare exception of his getting me to come along to assist. Which is more charity then anything, he doesn't need my help."

"Interesting," is her simple poker-faced response. "As I understand it, you and he have interest in certain works performed on occasion in an arena of challenge, and you've gained some data in your counter-surveillance, but you've no interest in memberhip, either you or he. Your involvement would be freelance," Cat summarizes.

Alec tilts his head to the side as he considers this, "That may be an oversimplification, but essentially, yes. Someone… We know someone who would benefit from the work done by your members. However, there is a code we have, it's kept us safe and alive for a long time. So we are splitting the difference between what we want and what we need. We're offering you services at a steep discount. From the run down I've done on the members, I'm sure such firesale prices are well within your means."

"I could take this to mean also you feel you don't have a direct stake in what we do, that you aren't of the minority termed Evolved persons," Cat considers, "to which I counter this isn't just about persons of unusual genetic gifts. Secret prisons, registration acts, and the like sounds so very Gestapo and Holocaust to me. It also means greatly expanded police power, and the caution I make for people not of that minority is to remember power of that magnitude requires justification to keep support. If they eliminated the Evolved, someone would have to be the next target."

"Having said that, there are and will be occasions when the talents of an engineer are needed. Such as the devisement of escape routes from a building which go to unseen places, are not observed so much in being constructed, and appear on no blueprint or public record whatsoever."

Alec chuckles, "Kiddo, I was already afraid of the cops when you were still figuring out that pesky problem of why the blue square wouldn't fit into the green circle on your playskool toy set. You don't have to preach to the converted." his smile remains, but it's a little colder around the edges. Down that road lays bad memories, "My talents are at the disposal of whomever has the cash to pay for the required equipment, labor, supplies, etc. Expenses so to speak."

"Unfortunate, Mr. Bonder," Cat replies calmly. "People should not fear the agents of government. Agents of government should fear the people." She rises and moves for the door, fingers there reaching to open it. "Thank you for your time. We'll be in touch." And she makes her exit.

Alec snickers, "Alan Moore would be proud of you." he says evenly as he stands when she does. The action seems automatic, as if standing when a lady stands is just something he does. Gentleman thieves are a dying breed. He watches her go and flops back down into his seat with a sigh.

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