The Cat Came Back...


cat_icon.gif delphine_icon.gif helena_icon.gif

Scene Title The Cat Came Back…
Synopsis … when Helena brought a visitor.
Date June 15, 2009

Village Renaissance Building, Cat's Penthouse

Arriving by any of four elevators, visitors will find they open into three foot corridors facing wide double doors made from sturdy southern pine which swing outward and have the strongest locks available. The stairs lead to single doors, also outward opening, at the end of three foot corridors. Entry requires both a key and a keycard; other security measures are a video camera and voice communication terminal at all doors. The 4th Street side has floor to ceiling windows interrupted only by the access points. Cream colored curtains are normally kept closed.

This level has enough space for sixteen apartments. There is an office space with reception area, conference room, and executive office; a room for archery practice and other forms of physical exercise; a very well appointed kitchen and dining area; a music zone with an array of instruments, electronics, and amplifiers; an entertainment area with an HD set covering an entire stretch of wall from floor to ceiling; a locked room where security footage for the building is recorded and can be monitored; a laundry room; a staircase for roof access; central air and heating; the main bedroom and a few smaller guest rooms; plush deep wine carpet everywhere except the kitchen, laundry room and bathrooms; and track lighting everywhere overhead. The light levels can be lowered or raised in the entire place, or selectively by segments. The overall decor suggests the occupant is a woman.

Getting to the Village Renaissance Building was quite the adventure. First, Delphine may have gotten a laugh at Helena once she saw her in the brown wig she's been using of late, despite the dire circumstances, and it's Helena who takes the very careful drive before finally parking and leading the woman in by way of one of the side entrances, tapping the code to access the elevator which then brings them to the penthouse.

-Ding!- goes the door cheerily, which then opens to admit them. "Del? Cat?" Helena calls. En route, she explained to Delilah a bit about Cat - how when Arthur took her power, he also seemed to have taken her memory, which makes sense to Helena in a way, since Cat's power is her memory.

Delphine did laugh. Just a little. But then Helena may have also laughed at the overlarge celebrity-sunglasses the older woman took to wearing along the trip here, her hair down and left to rest down her back and over her shoulders in brunette tangling waves. She stays quiet for now as she follows Helena inside, eyeing her surroundings over the top of her sunglasses as she goes, which she then goes to draw away when Helena calls out the names of those they've come to see, or at least one. She's dressed in clothes that would be practical if not for the fact they were bought for their cheapness over true comfort, a dress with an oversized jacket over the top, left open.

She's been busy over these three days here with the only really clear memories being of herself at nineteen and points prior to that, exploring the immense penthouse. Cat's also been reading about herself and the people she'd come to associate with. Over and over again. Tales of Vanguard and viruses, of formulae and prisons and time travelers. Even found the photo of that old bastard who threw her out a window and burnt down the family home.

And some of it has even begun to feel true. Bits and pieces of the memory which had been have been reclaimed, as if she's taken the first steps in making use of analog over digital. But right now she's in the exercise room, wearing sports bra and shorts as she takes some frustrations out on the punching bag. A few more blows are landed with her right arm, then a kick, and she takes a break. Upper arms are looked at, as quietly marveling words are spoken. "I'm not just twenty-six and still hot, I've gotten a bit toned in all that time too. I must've been working out here." She glances over at Delilah, or where she thinks Delilah might be, to ask "Did I turn into a black belt or something too?"

Helena hears the voices and follows them, beckoning for Delphine to come with. Once she gets to the doorway of the excercise room, she calls out, "Hey, Cat. Listen - remember when I told you we'd figure out a way to fix what's happened with you? I've brought someone who can help. Can you meet us out in the living room?" She notes over her shoulder to Delphine, "I'll make sure there's a painkiller waiting, and some food, too. There's even a bedroom so you can take a nap afterward without worrying. Thank you so much for doing this."

The denim jacket she's wearing, faded and worn but comfortably so, is drawn around her tighter, Delphine looking past Helena towards where she's yelling for company. Her sunglasses clenched in one hand, she swivels her gaze back to Helena, and affords the younger woman a smile and a nod. "Aye, thanks. 's fine. I should be alright and walkin' around when it's done," she assures, and takes a breath as if to calm her own nerves.

She blinks first on seeing Delilah isn't there to hear what she said. "Damn. Where'd she wander off to?" A few steps are taken to stick her head out and look for her, only to be met by Helena arriving. Cat seems somber still, stricken a bit by the learning of what she has, and more respectful as well. "You went to prison," she comments, "and we broke you out. It… It's starting to feel like it's really my life, Helena. And not a weird dream."

Without really answering Helena's request, the five foot eight inch brunette with her arm still in a splint and a variety of healing shallow cuts heads for the entertainment area. That huge HD set is off at the moment, and there's furniture for use by visitors, it could be called a living room easily enough when the set is off and the room is quiet. Some forty-five seconds later she enters that part of the penthouse.

"That's because it really is your life." Helena tells her with a faint smile. "Cat, this is Delphine. She's going to try to help you remember everything, okay?" With that, she turns to Delphine. "Is there anything you'd like me to do? Stand someplace, get you something, keep my trap up and get the hell out of the way?" Helena's smile is a touch wry, but she means it.

"Not a thing," Delphine says, focused now on Cat as she emerges, judgmental and analysing, as if— attempting to see exactly what's wrong with her. Rubbing her hands together, she moves on closer, wariness in her step although more accurately, probably reluctance. "Keep an eye on your friend, if it's as bad as you say," is what the Irishwoman says, changing her mind as to what Helena can do, glancing the blonde's way before smiling to Cat. "Could be a bit've a shock to the system. Y'ready, then?"

"Delphine," Cat repeats with eyes resting on the Irishwoman, assessing in return. She's nervous, and wary, but her ground is stood just the same. "I am," she tells both of the others, and braces herself for whatever follows. But not without some humor or sarcasm. "It all sounds like I should maybe be preparing to get thrown from the street and into a building through a window on the second floor. That'd be a true reversal."

"That fall should have killed you, you know." Helena can't help but remark. "I wonder why it didn't. Either you got lucky, or Arthur didn't kill you on purpose."

"Only if y'good for somethin' else," Delphine mutters, darkly, but it's not where her focus is. Lifting a hand, fingers stretched, she doesn't touch Cat, and simply waits. It starts small, the pads of her fingertips glowing a soft white, before the light detaches and spins in tiny fairy pinpricks around the tendril of glowing brilliance that suddenly comes smokey from the woman's palm. The woman takes a breath, a gasping inhale as soon as it touches Cat—

And consumes her, that soft glow coming to emit from every inch of the woman, heavenly and numbing in the way it tingles. "Got…" Delphine starts, but never finishes, her hand tensing for a moment before— all at once the light dies. Some things shouldn't seem so simple. Sweat stands out on the Irishwoman's brow, and she squinches her eyes tight.

She watches the Irishwoman with fascination as the white light starts to emerge and envelop her body. Cat's eyes close as the sensations take hold, feeling it do the work Delphine intended with the action. Perhaps a reverse, even, of what Arthur himself had done in sensation as well as effect. She doesn't scream, she doesn't crumple, no, but there is a reaction.

A deep and sharp breath is sucked in, Cat's eyes going wide, as the darkness is seemingly lifted. The seven years she'd just moments before been unable to access as more than fragments and static are back, her entire demeanor shifts from partly confused and marveling teen to the mentally whole again woman of twenty-six.

"Thank you, Delphine," she offers in a voice of gratitude.

Helena lets out the hugh sigh of relief she'd been holding. "Cat," she says, stepping forward to give the woman a careful hug - her arm is still broken - welcome back. Then turning to the other woman she asks, "Delphine, can I get you something? Vicodin? A Redbull? Both?"

"Vicodin, 'n' water," Delphine says, her voice a little tighter and managing to get her eyes open at the onset of the headache, drifting towards the nearest place to sit down and clasping her cool palm to her forehead, letting out a shaky sigh. "Christ, he does a number on you people, doesn't he? Changes everythin', so I have to fix everythin'. The injuries, they were easier. 's just flesh." She lowers her hand, as if remembering what she was doing, and looks towards Cat. "An' y'welcome," she murmurs, with a wan smile.

She holds the splinted arm out of the way as Helena closes in and returns the embrace with her right arm, eyes closing again for that moment. When they reopen they hold anger and seriousness, mixing with guilt and a few other things. Perhaps she's skimming the contents of her mind to take inventory in those moments, if so it's incomplete. Time to do that later. It's a question instead, for Delphine, which takes center stage. "Have you met Arthur, Delphine? Water I have, vicodin we can maybe get. But I do have beer, wine, and whiskey."

"I have the vicodin already with me, Cat. Delphine was a 'guest' of Arthur's at Pinehearst." Helena rises to go fetch the requested water, and a few moments later is at Delphine's side with a dose in hand and and a cold bottle of water. Yeah, she knows where stuff is in Cat's place. "Gabriel and Peter went there, I think because Peter thought Arthur could help. It apparently turned into a battle royale."

"Wouldn't say no to whiskey for the road," Delphine mutters, but accepts the pill and water to go with it, down it with a tight swallow, before finishing off the water, sleeve wiped over her mouth once done. When she speaks, her lilting voice comes out a little steadier, knowing the pain will recede soon. "Battle royale, aye. Gabriel was runnin', I helped give 'im back his powers, and hell broke loose. Bit unexpected but did the job alright. But aye, spent a month down there. Great company, let me tell you," she adds, voice droll.

"Father and I have been talking about Arthur," Cat shares with her voice taking on a dangerous edge. "One of the conversations was about his plans. Another had a bit where the future Edward Ray had approached him before he came to me and Father agreed to work against Arthur. But at the same time he was asking me to meet him. Then things changed, he was contacted by someone interested in working at two directions, he pointed her at me. If that was actually him, I have to wonder."

"I contacted him last week, we needed to talk again and put heads together, he said to leave the city, so I went to Hartford. But it wasn't Father," she fumes. "It was Arthur. I don't know if it was telepathy and/or illusions, or shapeshifting. I let him get close. Let him touch me!"

There is fury with herself at having been fooled, and if she had something to throw in her hand, it would be launched at a wall.

As she reaches out and puts a steadying hand on Cat, Helena looks to Delphine. "There's at least one, maybe two people in the building here who could use your help." Helena notes. "And we do have this designed as a safehouse, so if you wanted to stay here for a day or two, you could. The accomodations are certainly better than most of the other safehouses." She gestures around the penthouse as an example.

"But if you want to keep moving, we can do that. Now, tomorrow morning, whenever is good. I mean, of course I would like you to help people, but we're not Pinehearst, no one has the right to make you do anything." A pause. "Delphine, have you thought maybe about where you want to go when this is all over? Because maybe the Ferrymen can help you go somewhere. Get you out of the country even, with a new ID. We even have someone who can change your face if you like."

Fidgeting against the splitted ends of her hair, Delphine watches Cat in distant sympathy, before looking towards Helena and listening with a wary kind of hope. "Aye— been livin' in this city for years, y'know? An' I always thought it'd be a good place to disappear, too, but not the case." Her mouth twists into a rueful smile. "If y'could get me to Canada or somethin' like that, I reckon I'd be alright from there. There's— "

A pause as she considers her words, and lets out a rasping chuckle. "There's a man who lives here, who I want to find again, tell 'im I'm sorry for disappearin' like I did. And I'll help your lot, too, providin' I can move around. After that, then yeah— I might be takin' you up on that."

She looks towards Cat, and adds, "They tried to trick me with an illusion of my brother. Seems to be a thing for 'em. Family. 'cept, what kind of family kills their own?" Oh hey— "Um, sorry."

"Arthur, as Father," Cat informs, "claimed Gabriel and Peter went to Pinehearst and Arthur lost his mind. Said he thinks he killed Peter, and asked me if I'd help him do Arthur in. He had his hand on my shoulder, it didn't register as trouble. Maybe it should have." Disgust with herself, still. "I said yes, then the pain hit me. It felt like he was ripping every organ out of me all at once. Then he mentally pitched me out the window." In those moments, her eyes are distant, as if she were watching part of that play out in detail.

Afterward, though, using an effort of will to stop viewing that event, she turns toward Delphine. "You still have your ability. What did he want from you, before you escaped?"

"I'll talk to our Ferrymen contacts and see if getting you across the border is possible." Helena says. "If you're interested in an identity change, I'm fairly sure we can manage that unless something happens to our man who can do that sort of thing." She pauses a moment, turning to look at Cat.

"Gabriel said," a pause, and she tries again, "Gabriel said that Arthur killed Peter. Snapped his spine, or maybe cracked his skull. But he also said," and this Helena adds quickly, "That Peter's come back from things almost as many times as he has. I'm not prepared to declare him dead, not until they lower a casket in the ground, Cat." Her expression goes steely determined.

"And like I told Gabriel, even then I might doubt it." That is not a tone one is reccomended to try and persuade from the current viewpoint. "I've ordered a pull out of most of our resources from Staten, but I'm not calling for a go to ground yet."

This subject of Peter is one Delphine simply isn't touching, the result of chaos she had started, and perhaps she could confirm or deny Gabriel's claims, but what good would it do? Was she really looking, anyway? Her hands come up to smooth her hair back a little, thinking on Cat's questions.

"They were testin' out what I could do. Seein' how much— damage I could reverse before it— " Delphine shuts her eyes, shakes her head quickly. "I dunno what else they were tryin' to do, just ran me through tests, took samples for God knows what. This doctor, Dr. Alison Meier," and there's a slight snarl to Delphine's mouth as she repeats the name, even if her voice is still gentle, "she was the needle-poker. Arthur's the bastard, though."

"The formula Arthur wants to recreate," Cat explains quietly for Delphine, "allegedly has a component, a sort of living energy that would catalyze the serum, according to what Father told me. My guess is, given your power to confer abilities, he thinks or thought you're the catalyst, or you have it. Is there any evidence he's completed that project? Doctor Meier… Father told me about her too. She's evil through and through. It was her work with trying to produce the serum, using a virus to make it bond with human cells. A virus called Shanti," she adds with a glance toward Helena.

And, still looking at Helena, her voice takes on a tone of derision. "Peter dead, right. Arthur's supposed to be dead too." Her eyes roll. Then she turns attention back to Delphine. "You're welcome to stay here, and the Ferry can maybe get you over the border, of course. But… there's hardly a point to that. If Arthur is looking for you, it won't matter where you go. He can find anyone he wants. I have to wonder… He threw me out a window, and set my parents' house on fire, but he didn't make sure I was dead. Did he not want me dead, or did he assume I'd die. If he thinks I'm dead, he won't be looking for me."

Then the muted, controlled rage is back. "I can't reach Father or Mother. He went at me, so they may be dead too. It all depends on whether or not he has that serum and still needs them."

Once more Helena puts a hand on Cat's good shoulder, very gently. It's Delphine whom she addresses, though. "No one's going to restrict your movements if you want to stay here a day or two. I think we'd just ask that you keep to the same protocols everyone else here are expected to maintain for going in and out. That way you could see Abby, maybe Claire…I'm thinking Gillian will want to meet elsewhere. There's one guy I know of too - Deckard, but he's not with us, per se. I think he's holed up in a safehouse though, those are all the ones that I know about."

"I think we need to pull the people we know who are going to be the best at hashing out plans and make some decisions, Cat." Helena adds seriously. "Pinehearst is far from the lesser of two evils now, and with Frontline happening any day now, we need to figure out what we're doing."

Delphine's eyes check out a little as the list of names is reeled off, but she nods, rubbing her hands together. The vicodin has kicked in, at the very least. "Might as well spend the night while'm here, right?" she assures, even as she gets to her feet. "I had an apartment— don't worry, they picked me up at the markets I used to go to, the place wasn't under my name or nothin' so I should be safe for as long as it takes me to poke around a wee bit, but I'll be back."

A helpless shrug. "At the best, I'll find who I'm looking for. At the worst, I can leave a note or somethin'. If I'm gone any longer, y'got a number I can ring? Don't worry, I— " Her hands come up to push long locks of hair behind her ears. "You're probably worried I'll take off like a bird when I get the chance, even if y'can help me too. Trust that I'll do what y'can, though, for as long as the favour's returned."

She then shakes her head at Cat. "Sorry, I wouldn't know. I know that whatever it is they wanted from me, they weren't gettin', apart from how much my ability could do, it seems. I was told— I was told I'd be a part of a new world. Happy livin' in this one, if you don't mind, was what I told 'em. Otherwise, I was just a lab rat."

She's silent for some moments, to think, listening as both Helena and Delphine speak. Then those moments conclude. Cat speaks somberly. "If he has the formula complete, things have gone from extremely bad to hellish. He doesn't need Goodman to expose others he wants wrecked. If he has the serum, he has leverage to get the Feds to raid them on general principles and find all they need. Trading on that ability to rapidly boost the ranks of Frontline. It's the key to the power he wants."

"Arthur can find us whenever he wants, so the thing to do is find and get him first. Broad strokes: leading him to believe some piece of that formula is at a location or with someone who's an easy target, putting together a force to fight with and keep him busy, and having snipers in the distance to blow his head off."

"The details of pulling that off are harder, that's where we need help. His name won't be popular, certainly not with me, but this would be a good time to find Edward Ray. Old or young, whichever. In the meantime, we need to be extremely cautious. Arthur's stolen any number of abilities, it might be safer to assume he has things until it's proven he doesn't. Verifying people we talk to are actually those people and… by no means let anyone lay hands on any of us, at any time." Because she's been there and done that.

"I don't know if this is anything Delphine needs - or wants - to know." Helena says, taking a moment to acknowledge Delphine with a thankful nod. "We can start in the morning. I'll put out calls to people, get them to come here to talk about it. There's one contact I'm going to pull in more readily that I haven't used before, he might be very helpful." She nods.

"I think we can go over what you've got in mind and see if it'll work. Arthur - he took a lot of ablities from Gabriel, maybe all of them, before he and Delphine got away." There's a pause. "I can't be half as tired as the two of you," she notes, "But I feel like I'm going to fall asleep on my feet."

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License