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Scene Title Tango
Synopsis Abby places a call back to New York City and unwittingly enlists the help of one of the Linderman Group's employees.
Date December 7, 2009

Outside the Spektor Home, Ryazan, Russia

Always considerate, or at least always tries to be, Abigail's once more gone outside at this god aweful hour of the night where, probably, only Teo might be away. odds are he's watching her in his own special way. Back at the snow fort she's plopped herself in the throne, parka, mitts, hat and scarf, robe and PJ's on underneath, winter boots with the heels dug into the snow. She's pilfered the satellite phone because this is sensitive conversation. Cat would kill her if she made the call on her own. She's pretty sure the company would too.

Somewhere stateside, there's a cellphone ringing at some reasonable evening hour. Hopefully she's not interrupting a date - Does Robert even have a life? - or a really late dinner for that matter. She's pretty sure that at 8 at night, he's not sleeping.

When his phone is on — and it usually is — Caliban has it programmed in such a way that it only allows a few rings before forwarding the caller to his voicemail. Whether or not he has a life outside the Linderman Group, he's a very busy man, and if he isn't available to pick up the phone after two, then chances are he won't be available to pick up after four or five either. It's on the third ring that the phone snaps open, and Abigail's ear is assaulted with the roar of wind buffeting against the mouthpiece, and the rumble of New York City's late evening traffic in the background.

Wherever he is, he's outside, which means he's probably as cold as Abigail is right now. "I was beginning to think you'd forgotten all about me."

"I never forget about you." There's a pause then a wince. "Okay, some might call that me, hitting on you, but I think you know different. Good evening Mr. Caliban. Sailing again?" Still southern, still dripping honey and there's no noise in the background she is. You could likely hear a pin drop.

"In this weather?" Caliban asks, a wry twist of amusement in his voice. "Not bloody likely. I'm on my way to a black-tie event that Mr. Linderman can't be bothered to attend because he'd rather be in Puerto Vallarta. Can't say that I blame him. What can I do for you, Miss?"

"some day, I'll attend one, and I'll have to actually buy a fancy dress. Look at it this way, free drinks, you can maybe find someone to take home, and if you get really bored, you should just go up to the band and have them play a tango and find the prettiest woman in the room and make her dance with you" So helpful.

"I was calling to ask you a few things, but I'll keep it quick since you're on your way to a dance. He's not in Moscow anymore, and he's sure as the sky is blue, in conversation with some not very nice people that put Mr. Lindermans back room deals to shame. Since I assume Mr. Linderman doesn't keep nuclear weapons in his back pocket"

Caliban's silence on the other end of the line is undercut by the ambient noise around him. Feet strike against pavement, shoulders jostle and bump against shoulders, and as he presumably squeezes between a narrow gap in the crowd, someone mumbles a tinny apology that's just loud enough for Abigail to hear. Somewhere not too far away, a horn is blaring and an irate taxi driver leaning out the window of his cab to shout epithets in a thick Boston accent.

When he speaks again, the friendly chagrin that had been in his voice has gone, replaced by careful neutrality. "The Corinthian Hotel is opening sometime in January," he says. "I'd like to take you to the gala, if you'll let me." There's a beat that doesn't last long enough for Abigail to formulate a reply before he continues tersely with, "Where are you getting this information?"

"If I'm alive come January. If I am… I'll have to think about it but I promise I'll give you an answer by the time it rolls around." She makes this promise because frankly, like some of the others, the odds are pretty stacked, especially if there's a nuclear weapon involved.

"From seeing him. I didn't, but another of our party did. Placed him in Ryazan. We're hunting nuclear weapons Mr. Caliban. Saving the world, yet again. I have to wonder just how often the world is going to need saving. Muldoon was seen conversing with a known Vanguard member, discussing annoying healers inside a surmised Vanguard location"

"Muldoon would know all about annoying healers, wouldn't he." Caliban's tone is flat. He reaches up, rubs one hand over the bristle of his beard, which crackles soft in the cavity of Abigail's ear. "Stay where you are. Don't go outside," even if the pristine stillness of her connection suggests that she already is, "and wait for me to get there before you do anything else."

Wait, what?

"Uhh, I'm already outside. About the only place to get privacy. But I brought the satelite phone out with me" Okay, paranoia is rising. "I know he's evolved… do you know what it is that he does? Something with his touch, that was all I could figure out when they had me on Staten…" A toque covered head pops up over the back of the snow throne, looking around. "and how long till you get here do you think?" Teo's gonna kill her. "I'm supposed to ask what we need to know about Muldoon"

"If there are any records of Muldoon's ability on file at the Linderman Building, I'll bring copies with me to Ryazan," Caliban assures Abigail. "I don't know if there's anything I can personally offer that would be of use to you or your friends. This is— admittedly, the first I've heard of any nuclear weapons." There's a rustling sound as he shifts the phone from one ear to the other. "I can book myself on the first flight to Moscow this evening after tonight's event concludes, but the earliest I can be in Ryazan— late tomorrow afternoon?"

"Personally? I'd lay five bucks on a bet that you can shoot a gun far better than me. All I'm here to do is stitch people up if they get hurt. So you'd be far better here than I am. There's already one guy who thinks that I'm gonna get us all killed, why shouldn't I be outside…" She's picking herself up off the throne, looking around carefully. "We know there's an illusionist, and there's.. uhh, a woman who can turn people to stone but they're still alive when she does"

"They might well have a technopath too, so watch your tongue, girl." There's more brusqueness to what Caliban is saying than he probably intends, and no sooner have the words left his mouth than an apologetic note interjects itself into his voice. "You can tell me everything in less than a day's time. Go back inside, stay out of view and advise your friends to do the same. I don't think you're in any immediate danger, Abigail, but until I know that you aren't—"

He lets it hang, either unable to complete that thought or expecting her to do it for him. "Please."

"some days, I wish I was a self-rescuing Princess. Some day I will be" Mutters Abigail over the phone. "Even from across an ocean every single man is still bossing me around" The brunette grouses, picking her way back to the house. "I'll make sure they know, it's a little after four, some of them should be waking soon" Across the yard she goes, abandoning the cold and forsaking it for the warmth and supposedly safety of the Spektor household. "You can call this number to leave a message about when you'll be in Ryazan. It's a secure phone"

There's an argument on the tip of Caliban's tongue, but he bites it off before it leaves his mouth. "All right," he says instead. "I'll be in touch. Stay safe."

'God bless Robert, safe travels. Remember, the tango!" And with those parting words, the brunette presses the end button, staring at the phone before shaking her head and heading to the kitchen. Tea, maybe attempt to sleep more, leave a note for everyone to read in case she doesn't catch them.

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