The Doppleganger


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Scene Title The Doppleganger
Synopsis April Silver meets with Minea and tells her altogether too many things that she really didn't want to know. Including just how much trouble they're all in.
Date May 4, 2009

The Nite Owl

The Nite Owl is a survivor from ages past - one of those ancient diners with huge plate glass windows, checkerboard linoleum floor, and a neon owl over the entrance that blinks at those entering. Inside, there's an L-shaped main counter, complete with vintage soda fountain and worn steel stools. All of the cooking is done on the ranges ranked against the rear wall. The outer wall is lined with booths upholstered in cracked scarlet vinyl, tables trimmed with polished chrome. Despite its age, it's been lovingly maintained. The air is redolent with the scent of fresh coffee, vanilla, and frying food.

Minea had been plunking away at her computer, marking down notes, getting things in order. Organizing all the little bits and variations that she had managed to be handed unknowingly or gleaned from various sources. She didn't want to hand in this stuff half assed to the Company. She wanted to put the pieces to the puzzles all together as much as she could. It was a mixed blessing it seemed to be on light duty, otherwise it might be lawrence who was doing this all.

But she'd gotten a call from April and after everything that was happening, Minea had agreed to meet up with the woman. The upside to having the badge was that she could get into her Malibu and flash it at checkpoints, state she was meeting a co-worker and be on her way at the late late hour. Things still pull, but Minea's been behaving and Levi's not been needed; not seeing April, the brunette grabs a table in the back that is fairly isolated but not conspicuously so.

She spoofed her present-self's number for the phone call; made it the more believable. Not wearing the denim jacket that has been almost a trademark since she stole it, but something black with a little more 'professional' air to it; something that would be expected of her present self. April also straightened her hair earlier today. From a distance, she looks like she should — but up close, there is still the gold ring on her left hand and the subtle wear of ten additional years on her face to distinguish Silver from Bradley.

That and the fact that, when she steps up to the table Minea has chosen, the greeting of choice is entirely wrong. "Hello, Dahl." Bradley knows Minea well enough to not be formal. April's smile is apologetic, but it doesn't quite reach her eyes; doesn't soothe the wary tension in her posture. "I apologize for the ruse," she adds quietly. There's a bit of distance between her and the table, space in which a field can be raised if Minea looks like she's going to react… adversely.

It's like that little sliver of a crack in her window when Goodman decided to make his test run at her. Little things that were just off. Off enough. Internally, Minea tenses, a slight 'oh shit' flickering across her mind as she takes in all that she sees before her. The doppleganger. Outwardly the woman just watches her, not making a move for her gun either way. Not yet at least. "You… have been a bad, bad girl."

Hazel eyes shutter. "Is that what you think?" April asks softly. She's better than she used to be at pretending, at lying, at weaving a story; but not that good. Her lips twist; her jaw sets; April Silver looks away, fingers curling in. The words clearly hurt. "So be it. It's not like it really matters." Except it does. If it didn't, she would never have made this rather stupid decision in the first place.

"I think there's a bunch of you who are being bad bad girls and boys," Minea answers. "Except I don't think those who you used to work for and I work for know what's up yet, so why don't you have a seat and tell me what you want. Because you phoned me and asked for a meeting" Minea gestures to across from her. "Midnight snacks on me. Not often you get to sit with someone who's either a really clever doppleganger, or Hiro Nakamura's decided to fuck with us, even if I'm told he hasn't."

"He hasn't," April says. It's more or less true. She hesitates for a moment, then does sit down; Minea's hands are above the table, and she is non-Evolved. It should be safe. "I…" What does she want? The woman runs a hand through her hair, looks down at the other hand resting on the table, the one with the ring. "It's been almost ten years. Ten years since the Company fell. I needed… to see someone who isn't…" April draws in and releases a deep breath. "Who remembers the good things we did."

"The Company falls?" Minea echoes back. Ten years. Ten years, this woman sitting across from her is at least… ten years from the future? A glance down to the ring that seems to get the other woman's focus. "They do some not so good things, but they do some good things. Clandestine secret operations are never… wholly good but it's done to protect the populace until things can safely come to light and is done with good intentions. Sometimes, the world and its inhabitants aren't mentally prepared to know what hides just out of sight, or what's done to keep them safe and their world intact." Preaching to the choir likely. This isn't the baby terrorists who, if any of them besides the two who have figured it out thanks to God knows who or what, would likely try to gun her down. Their mistake. "Can I ask how many of you there are? I know of two so far that i'd place bets on being here. But I think there's 4 of you at least."

"Yes." Hazel eyes lift to Minea, April's expression set and solemn. "In three months. It's taken down from the inside." Her expression twists. "And I can't — I don't know everyone who's clean. I think you are." April's gaze falls again. "I hope you are."

She is quiet for a moment, then speaks again, addressing Minea's question without looking at the other woman. "Four that you can trace. I — haven't told them. That the marks are trackable. That the Company is certainly looking for — us. It's… most of them belong in holding, Dahl. But they're the only ones I know aren't sleepers. The only ones." She closes her eyes, rubs away the water welling in them.

"Is this why you came back? My partner and I have been trying to figure it out. I saw you. Union and 6th. You threw out a forcefield at the people and then walked away. He said you had something to do, if you were coming back, something you had to fulfill." Four trackers, people who were already in captivity. Tyler Case is likely one. April is another though not in captivity. "Can I have the names April, and what do they plan to do now that they're back here." It's like deja vu, only it's not the Phoenix leader in front of her but someone else. Stuff from the future coming back in time. Some days…

Life would be better if she'd never known about temporal manipulation. Realy.

"What do you want me to do?"

"I…" What does she want Minea to do? The woman looks across the table, smiles sadly. "You think I've done bad things? I haven't even gotten started yet. It… I wish there were any other way. But Pinehearst has to fail first, and I'll do whatever I have to to make that happen." Including working with people she wants nothing more than to put behind bars.

"If — if you're really not with them… then help me. Buy me time," April asks. "Don't… tell anyone because anyone could be on the other side. I — It's Arthur Petrelli behind everything; him and Peter. It goes all the way up to the top, Dahl."

Could be anyone. Minea licks her lips then rubs them together. "What about Goodman, or Dalton?"

April closes her eyes, shakes her head. "Goodman's deep in Arthur's pocket. Adam Monroe's working with them. I don't know about Dalton." She pauses briefly. "They've got access to the 'Walker System'."

"Monroe went after some Company agents. Killed one, just to pass a message to leave him alone. He's very much in New York right now." Goodman. Out. Shit. But that leaves possibly Dalton. Possibly. Minea reaches up, scratch at her earlobe and shake her head. "April… this is… fuck." Yeah. Fuck. "I don't know what this 'Walker System' is. I'm still wet behind the ears. Fuck, for all I know they have the damned audiokinetics still on me. Goodman brought me in. Recruited me from the ISA."

"I'm on desk duty April, I just got shot. Who am I supposed to go to with this? Who should I take the chance on? Obviously not Goodman, but what good will going to them do?"

"The Walker System lets them find anyone they want. Anywhere. We used to supplement the isotope tracking with it." And the only reason the fugitives have remained unfound is that the Company doesn't have 'it' anymore.

As Minea continues, April shakes her head. "I said don't," she replies. "Don't tell anyone. Don't lead them to me. Give me space. If — if I'm still alive at the end of this… I'll try to get them all back in holding. Turn them in. Because they don't belong loose." She smiles thinly. "I don't expect to. And if I fail — Pinehearst originally gave the Company to the media in August. If I fail, you need to stop them from carrying through."

"So sit on my hands," Minea murmurs before she pauses, brown eyes snapping back up to the other woman from where they'd drifted to her coffee. "They're in holding. you said they were in holding. But that you're going try and get them back in… "

"We were all in prison, Minea," April explains. "That's where we came back from. That's how I wound up stuck with them in the first place."

"You were in prison because of the Company falling?" Minea's starting to get into question and answer period and she leans back as the waitress comes around to refresh coffees.

She waits until the waitress has gone away again, takes a sip of the coffee without really tasting it. "Yes," April answers. "Information about the Company was leaked to the press. HomeSec turned on us. Any agent that Pinehearst hadn't turned — anyone they wouldn't protect… we were hunted down and guaranteed imprisonment no matter how fair the trial." She looks down at her hands, twisting the ring on her finger.

August. Well. "I'm going to need that ring April. That's not yours. It belongs to someone else. That jacket too that you were wearing. I don't know why you mugged it from him, but.." Agents hunted down and imprisoned. Fabulous. She should have stuck to forging ID's. "So sit on my hands and information about you guys, to buy you some time. How much time. Because right now, it could very well be my life if I don't turn over information that I know, that they should know. I might even be able to toss you to some folks who can help that aren't affiliated with the Company."

April looks across the table at Minea, quiet for a long moment; in the end, she shrugs. "Do what you feel you have to, Minea," she finally replies. "As I will." The woman stands up, smiles wanly. "There's a restaurant in Lower East — Freeman's. You can leave a message there and it'll get to me." There's a beat of silence. "I'm sorry, Dahl," April adds, before turning her back and walking away.

Sorry is not going to cover it. Not this whole mess that she just dropped in Minea's lap. She should stand up, pull her gun and shoot the woman, tranq her and drag her back to Primatech. But Minea instead just sits there, watching the other woman walk away.

She was right. Deep down there's a scream of glee. She was right. It wasn't a shape shifter. But right beside that little happy part, that modicum of self joy is a lot of doubt and hesitation. A rock and a hard place. What do you do, knowing a piece of the future and what it is, and knowing how to keep it going towards that future?

Or how to change it. "I'll give you until Hiro Nakamura," Minea murmurs. She can sit on it till then. She doesn't see the harm in that, sine he's a known puzzle piece. After that. Well. There's always August!

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