Shut The Door


cardinal_icon.gif claire2_icon.gif

Cameo by:


Scene Title Shut The Door
Synopsis Claire and Cardinal chat about a varity of things and get a surprise visit by Eve.
Date November 09, 2009

New York Public Library

Once upon a time, the New York Public Library was one of the most important libraries in America. The system, of which this branch was the center, was among the foremost lending libraries /and/ research libraries in the world.

The bomb changed that, as it changed so much else.

By virtue of distance, the library building was not demolished entirely, like so many others north of it; however, the walls on its northern side have been badly damaged, and their stability is suspect. The interior is a shambles, tattered books strewn about the chambers and halls, many shelves pulled over. Some have even been pulled apart; piles of char in some corners suggest some of their pieces, as well as some of the books, have been used to fuel fires for people who sought shelter here in the past.

In the two years since the bomb, the library — despite being one of the icons of New York City — has been left to decay. The wind whistles through shattered windows, broken by either the blast-front or subsequent vandals, carrying dust and debris in with it. Rats, cats, and stray dogs often seek shelter within its walls, especially on cold nights. Between the fear of radiation and the lack of funds, recovery of the library is on indefinite hiatus; this place, too, has been forgotten.

After having talk to Magnes, Claire's mood has been on edge to say the least. Today, it's at it's worse, as anyone in the library will hear her raised voice as she talks on her cellphone in her room. Thing such as.. "You let mom come to New York!" or "That's not an excuse." But finally she volume drops and finally Claire comes storming out of her small room in the Library stating clearly. "I'm sure you'll hear everything from Mom." And the cellphone is snapped shut with a small sound of irritation. "He never changes." She growls a bit, snatching up her shotgun and dropping into a seat at a table and starts taking it apart for cleaning.

As the shotgun's snatched from its rack and Claire starts to clean it, Cardinal looks up from the reports that he's going over at his own table, without any lights to illuminate him over there, as usual. A brow lifts, and he calls over dryly, "…dare I ask what that was all about?"

"My dad let my mom move to New York, with all the threats and Norman White." The words just explode from the small blonde terrorist as she tries not to slam parts of her newest baby on the table. "He's at least an ex-Company agents… she's breeds show dogs! He should have convinced her to stay in Costa Verde.. I mean.. She brought my brother for god sake!" A part is slammed on the tabling making the rest jump and scatter a bit, this make Claire stop short and rein in her temper some. "Sorry. He just… Oooo…. he just knows how to get under my skin." She says that now, but if Noah was right there, she's probably be throwing herself into his arms squealing 'Daddy!'

Oh. "Oh." Cardinal brings a hand up, fingers scratching a bit under the curve of his chin as he remains silent for a long moment before finally asking what his brain was trying to fix out, "Which— oh, right, Company. I'm guessing your adoptive mother, then?"

"Yes!" Claire blurts out in exasperation. "My adoptive mom." Then she realizes the confusion and the wind slips out of her sails as she sighs. "And she's looking for me too…. not to mention Magnes already ran into her which is how I found out in the first place." Her tone is bitter as she continues. "I haven't even seen her for a few years. I moved here after graduation and disappeared off the radar." Not a good daughter at all, nope.

"I hadn't thought about your mothers at all.." Cardinal leans back, one hand raking through his hair as he regards her, head cocked a bit to one side, "So, what's got you so pissed off about all've this, Red?"

"She is here… in New York." Claire says it like that should explain it all. She motions to his collection of prophecies and paintings. "With Norman White on the loose and all that crap floating around about us burning and stuff.. I'd rather her in Coasta Verde and far away from this place."

"Good point, I suppose…" Cardinal's hand drops to the table, fingers drumming there loosely as he asks, "…so does she know about this sort've shit? The Company, what you— do, and all? I never really asked about your maternal side."

"Seems she's working for the Ferrymen.. has for awhile. So I'd say she's got a pretty good clue." Claire admits, the first hint of a smile threatening to tug up a corner up her mouth, but it slides away quickly enough as she adds, "But she is in no way a fighter or can handle things like that. So I don't know.. She shouldn't be here." She looks a bit uneasy suddenly. "But I don't think she knows what I've been doing. I don't think she'd approve of anything I've done."

"If she's with the Ferry," Cardinal states firmly, "Then she knows enough to know what risks she's taking, Claire. She's a grown woman, she can make her own decisions." He leans forward, resting one arm on the table before saying more quietly, "We all fight in our own way."

That gets a snort from Claire, but she doesn't retort at all, busying herself with cleaning her shotgun. "Dad use to trying and not put her in danger all the time.. even having her memory erased time and time again until she was hospitalized from what it did to her… Now he's just letting her get dab smack in the middle of it all." She press her lips into a thin line, her eyes on what she's doing. "She's a dog breeder… what she going to do? Send Mr. Muggles to gnaws on White's ankle?" If Cardianl had seen the comics he'd know who Mr. Muggles was, she glances over at her boss with a mildly amused look.

Of course, he has! Cardinal's lips twitch in a bit of amusement as memory filters back in. "Not everything's about fists and guns, Red," he says with a shake of his head, "The Ferry's important too, keeping our people safe and healthy."

Giving a soft huff, Claire's shoulders slump some. "I know… " She murmurs still unhappy. "Maybe I'm just a bit stressed knowing she's looking for me.. has already met my boyfriend and given him relationship advice. Not to mention Mr. Muggles didn't; growl at him.. he actually liked Magnes.. which means mom probably likes him too." Her head hangs some. "I know I have to go see her though… I can't hide from my mom forever…. it's just.. this city is just too screwed up right now."

"I can't help but notice," Cardinal observes, regarding her for a long moment, "That you seem upset that your mother likes your boyfriend."

"I.. don't know. No… not so much upset.. Just… I didn't get to introduce them." Claire looks like she's trying to explain it. "Plus I guess with how everyone else reacted to him, I expected a different reaction." She looks a bit confused. If her hands were not full of shotgun parts, she'd probably throw her hands up in frustration. "I don't know.. I'm going by a dog.. I could be wrong."

Cardinal rubs briefly at the orbit of his eye, trying not to smile as he admits, "It's probably twice as confusing as it is for me, and I'm the one who gets to listen to it— well, hell, go see her? It's not like your, uh, other parents, I'm sure she'd love to."

Claire shoots him a sour look. "As if it's that easy. It would probably be easier dealing with my biological parents." She takes a deep breath and lets it out slowly. "Damn…. " At that moment she decided she's gonna go see her mom. "I can hear the lecture now." Of course, she deserves it.

"She's family. Family's important." Cardinal leans back in the chair, hands folding over his chest as he admits, "I might leave some of the shit you've been up to out, mind you…"

"Well… yeah." Claire can't help but chuckle. "I'm not about to tell my mom that I've been recently crushed by a falling Ferris Wheel.. Or burned to death. Or even that my biological grandfather almost killed me." She wrinkles her nose a bit after she says that. "God… I'm becoming my dad."

"You can probably cover Arthur," Cardinal admits, dryly, "The Ferry probably know about that whole situation. I mean, you don't need to, you can always leave that part out…"

Claire just slowly shakes her head, not bothering to look at Cardinal. "Not if I can help it. Last thing she needs to hear is how many times her daughter died. I'm also not telling her how I live." She glances at Cardinal with a smirk. "No matter how it's been set up, she will not approve."

"Speaking of…" Cardinal pushes himself up with a grunt, straightening, "I need to see about moving operations into the underground levels, it's gonna start getting cold soon, and we can't heat it up here."

"Underground? Seriously?" Claire asks, brows lifting high on her head, she glances around and looks thoughtful. "Actually your right. It's been getting pretty damn cold at night already." Her look turns a bit mischievous as her eyes settle on him, her tone taking on a teasing edge. "Not that you can tell." He can't expect to have people leaving there that don't notice the coming and goings of others.

"Yeah, there's miles of shelves under the park, we can heat it more easily…" Cardinal looks over with a smirk, one brow lifting as he points out, "I'm here more often'n I'm not, you know, Red."

"That is not what I'm talking about." Claire points out before adding, "You guys need to make sure the door is shut.. this place does echo." She says it nonchalantly as she starts putting the shotgun back together as she pieces are cleaned and oiled. "Or not.. I could just take a pair of those noise canceling earphones to bed, but they are rather uncomfortable." By the end of it it sounds like she's going to start chuckling. "Anyhow.. So we need to make a day to pull everything deeper into the library. Shouldn't be too hard."

At that, Cardinal grins broadly; not even having the grace to blush as he leans a hip against the table she's seated at, both brows lifting a touch, "Hey, you didn't have to listen, y'know. You're a grown woman. And yeah, on top of everything else, though— I was thinking maybe Sparrow could help with some expansions…"

"Kinda hard not too… " Claire glances up at him as she leans against the table. "She's not exactly the silent type." Her tone matter of fact even though she smirks, there isn't a blush there.. so obviously she's getting use to certain things in her life. The last piece in place she works the slide with a loud cha-chack before she smiles rather brightly. "Sorry you have to keep replacing these. Hopefully, this one will last awhile." She doesn't sound too hopeful though. "Sparrow? Not sure I've met her yet."

"She's new to town, she's helping us out with White… a terrakinetic," Cardinal says, one hand scratching under his chin thoughtfully, "So I'm thinking she can probably help expand the tunnels and such."

"Ooooh." Claire says softly, cradling her shotgun some. "Thinking of putting everything underground permanently? A secret underground lair?" She puts a mysterious tone in her voice. "Would probably be cooler in the summer too." She points out.

"It's a little easier to secure, too, once we get underground. I don't know how much Sparrow can move, but, we'll find out.." Cardinal cracks a grin, "Yeah, it might be a bit've a comic book cliche, but, it'll work."

"Magnes would be all over that." Chuckling, Claire climbs to her feet, resting the shotgun on her shoulder, "He'd probably think your all cool after that." She can't help but have a touch of fondness in her town when she talks about Magnes. "And yeah.. I know.. No telling him." She reassure him with a smirk, though it does fade some at the edges. "It bothers me not telling him everything, but at least he doesn't push it."

"If he ever learns to look at the world realistically, or at least manage some semblance of subtlety and good judgement…" A frustrated little grunt from Cardinal, his head shaking tightly and one hand lifting in a vague flutter through the air, "He's a good kid, but he has no filter between his mouth and brain, and sometimes I wonder if there's a brain at all."

"Maybe.. But he's learning slowly." Claire states softly, her smile a touch sad at Cardinal's words. The man's opinion matters obviously. "I finally got him to quit freaking about me dying. I guess Liz told him I died, I thought he knew." She moves to put the shotgun on the rack gently. "Anyhow… he kept talking about protecting me from being hurt… " She turns and gives Cardinal a smirk. "So I made him kill me to prove a point. Now that he's seen me actually come back to life, I think at least that's less of an issue now."

"Maybe if he hadn't decided to fly off in the middle've all of that…" Cardinal exhales a sigh of breath, pausing then to give her a bemused look, "…you had him kill you?"

"Yeah.. I know. I admit, it kinda bothers me he flew off before checking.. but.." Claire shrugs blowing it off really. His bemused look gets a grin. "I did.. stuck the gun in his hand, places it where he'd hit my heart and made him shoot me dead. He seems awed when I coughed up the bullet and handed it to him, but I figured he really needed a wake up call before he gets himself killed needlessly for me."

"Doesn't that… still hurt, though?" Cardinal just stares at her for a moment, his brow furrowed, "I mean, tissue shock and everything still sets in, right?"

"Not as bad as you would think." She doesn't seem to see the big deal about it. "I mean, when I didn't have my ability I hurt all over. But you've seen the comics… I made tapes of me killing myself time and time again. Falling, stepping in front of trains… you name it…" Claire spreads her hands before her and gives him a sheepish look. "It's really not that big of a deal for me."

"Well, I don't know," Cardinal's lips crook in a grin, "I mean, you could just be a masochist or something. So, what, your power comes with a built-in… pain filter or something? Obviously you've still got a sense of touch…" He's curious now, looking her over bemusedly.

"I guess? I mean it still hurts, just not as bad as what I can tell. I mean, I'm only going on that short time without my ability. I didn't break any bones or anything." She slowly shrugs. "I just can't explain it." Frustration colors her tone at first and then turns rather amused, "So I guess I'm slightly masochistic. I'd have to be to take the hits I do."

"No, but you did nearly die anyway," Cardinal points out, his tone rather dry, "And you did ask your boyfriend to shoot you through the heart, you know, so I'd say that definately makes you a little bit of a masochist. Anyway…" He shakes his head, "You need to talk to your mother."

"I did die." Claire corrects him. "I drowned in my own blood." Her nose wrinkles a bit at the faint memory of struggling to breath, while Cardinal carried her. "Hey.. the shot through the heart was for a greater purpose. When he saves someone that needs saving instead of me, then it won't be for nothing." While that whole death talk doesn't make her squeamish, him mentioning her mother again does. "I know.. I know. I'll go see her her, dad told me what safe house she's at."

"I'd come with you, but I doubt she'd approve of me," Cardinal grins, his head shaking just a little, "Just—tell her you're doing good things. Important things." A hand claps to her shoulder, "I'm sure she's got faith in you."

"Walking through the shadows.."

Comes a voice from just outside the room. And in walks a familiar face, a woman who hasn't been seen by anyone in some time now. "Hello there." Says Eve, the seer looks well.. more sane than usual. Dressed in a long and flowing dress of dark green, her leather high heeled boots click on the floor as she makes her way into the room.

Her long dark hair is coiled around her hair in a braid and the rest falls in waves down her back. Her luminous grey eyes look at Claire and Cardinal.

Claire gives him a light smack in the stomach. "What? Your chicken? You should fear my dad more, not my mom." She gives him a big grin. "I'll make sure to tell her what a wonderful influence you are on her daughter." The sound of Eve's voice pulls her attention then, a smile given to the seer. "Hello Eve. What bring you around here?"

"Your father's got a rather impressive reputation, admittedly, but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it…"

The sing-song voice of the prophet brings Cardinal's head up then, at first guardedly — and then with a relaxed smile, his chin tilting up in a gesture of greeting to her. "Eve. Good to see you… it's been a little while. Is everything alright?"

"Thought I would drop in on the people about here." Eve says softly and then her eyes flit to Claire and she walks forward to hug the young woman. "It's been a while, no?" she says to the ex-cheerleader. "I've.. been busy." She says to both of the people in the room with her. "What's been going on lately around here? Anything I should know?"

"Also, your father is just so cute when he's serious, yeah?" she says, Bennet and Eve.. have an unique relationship.. meaning Bennet is stern with Eve and Eve just counters with being crazy to the man. Cardinal is given a warm smile as well. "You have been busy, am I right? At least from my dreams you have."

Accepting the hug, Claire wrinkles her nose. "My dad is not cute he's a trained ex-agent. Makes him far from cute." She studies the woman curiously, a soft smile on her lips. "Yeah, it has been awhile." She glances at Cardinal since he's the boss. "Beside the fact, my mother is in town.. I've been killed a few more times including making my boyfriend shot me.. Nothing real exciting, no." Her smiles is a teasing one.

"I'm always busy," Cardinal admits, his weight shifting to rest his hip against the table's edge, both arms folding across his chest as he watches the pair of young women with an easy, if slightly tired smile, "I've been… getting things ready to deal with White, to defend the Statue of Liberty. We've broken out Conrad's old stash of weapons and armour, we'll be doing some training drills soon. Hopefully it'll be enough. And after that…"

He grimaces. "Munin. Wherever that nuclear monster's hidden."

"Oh I was teasing, that old man." Eve chuckles and shakes her head before standing back and looking back at Cardinal. "I hear, the Statue ey? This man.. is quite the loon." She's one to talk! And then her eyes drift to outside the room. "I'll be back." She says abruptly and then she exits the room with a look behind her shoulder and a wink at the pair.

Watching Eve step out again she shakes her head slowly, Claire keeps her voice down as she murmurs. "I don't think I'll ever get her." There is affection in her tone, though. She stands there watching where the woman left and then sighs. "I better go see what I have that looks nice.. but I don't look like a hoodlem." She motions to her current black and white ensemble and avoid some of the stuff I wear for Magnes." She gives her brows a bit of a waggle as she steps away from Cardinal.

"She's a strange one, that's for sure…" Cardinal watches her as she suddenly departs the room, his head shaking tightly, "…she's at least more lucid than Tamara, but I don't envy either of them." He looks to her, then, and then rolls his eyes, "Christ, Red, buy some clothes, would you? And I don't need to know what you wear for Magnes."

Out right laughing, Claire heads in the direction of her room. "Shut your door when you have company and I won't tell you about what I'm wearing for Magnes. All that lace and stuff." Her voice has a sing-song quality to it at that last bit, she glances over her shoulder at him with a big grin. "Deal?"

"Oh, please, as if you'd show him your lingerie," Cardinal rolls his eyes, "You'd have to be sleeping with him to do that." He grins after her as she starts walking off, "…you need any money for clothes shopping?"

Claire just gives him a mischievous and knowing smile, adding a batting of her lashes before slipping into her room, "Nope… I've got some tucked away." Is shouted back. "Remember.. Door shut!" And her's shuts almost as if proving the point.

"Lingerie.. sex.. lace..?!?!" Eve's voice can be heard from outside the room and then she's rushing back to Claire's room.

"Claire! Claire! Are you using condoms? Are you being safe? No little Claire bits hanging out right?" Eve is pounding on the door and her eyes look up towards the ceiling as she mouths the words.

What. The. Fuck.

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