The Fourth Seal?


aric_icon.gif elisabeth2_icon.gif jaiden_icon.gif

Scene Title The Fourth Seal?
Synopsis When the fourth seal breaks in Revelations, it heralds years of tribulations leading to Armaggedon. Is this the fourth seal…. or Armaggedon itself?
Date Nov 8, 2010

Redbird Security Solutions, Basement

With so much to do, few people in Endgame got any sleep. The curfew has barely lifted — Jaiden had to have left his place the very second the clock struck the hour to be here at this time. Elisabeth has finally literally hit Richard over the head and made him crash for a couple of hours by threatening him with bodily damage if he does not go close his eyes. She herself is finishing the last of her own preparations for the day as the others trickle upstairs to find either a couple of hours sleep before the day or find their jolts of caffeine. Sitting at the desk Cardinal has set up down here, Elisabeth has the laptop — not network connected in any fashion — sitting in front of her with its small camera. There's a half-drunk cup of coffee next to the machine, but her attention is on the recording that's playing on the screen. A recording that it looks like she herself may have made which she shuts off as the door at the bottom of the basement stairs opens.

Turning in her chair, expecting to see Richard once more showing his face, she has a bit of a scowl on her own. It eases to a smile as Elisabeth's weary blue eyes fall on Jaiden. "Well, now, you're a sight for sore eyes, Aussie." She moves to stand up, palming the thumb drive from the computer as she does so, and walks over to hug him tightly. "Last time I saw you, you weren't old enough to do more'n ruffle your hair."

The very second Curfew lifted the garage door at Jaiden's place went up and the man went speeding off into the morning. Thankfully traffic today is light this early, so he only hits a few lights and made it to Redbird in record time. He looks fairly rested, considering the circumstances, and much older than the last time Elisabeth saw him. Glancing at his pocketwatch as he makes it down the stairs, he leans in to give Elisabeth a tight hug and an affectionate peck on the cheek, patting her on the shoulder before leaning back. "Aye, and you look exactly like I remembered you from back then. Still remember having to dig that ute out of that sinkhole that got 'dug' miraculously in the middle of the outback."

He is smiling warmly at the memory, strangely enough, but after a moment his face goes serious. "You ready for today? It's going to be…interesting, I think. Frightening too." he glances at the stairs, taking in a breath or two. "The safe house in Red Hook is pretty much secure, so if you need a fallback location, head there. You know how to get in, and the walls can withstand just about anything up to an armor-piercing shell. It's not much, but it should be safe and fairly unknown to just about anyone."

She holds him far more tightly than perhaps he expected. When she draws away, though, Elisabeth appears calm. "I'll keep it in mind," she says quietly. "If for some reason the place is compromised, use my apartment." She digs into her pocket and removes her key from the ring, holding it out to him. "Just after Humanis First had me, a friend who is a security expert went through my place and reinforced the front walls, put in a solid rod metal door, replaced the windows, the whole nine yards. Take whoever you need to there and get word to me. I'll get you evac'd off the roof if I can."

When she takes his hand to press the key into it, the thumb drive goes too, and Liz's blue eyes are haunted. "Jaiden…. if I don't come back from this, I need you to make sure that Richard gets the drive. And I need you to swear to me that no matter what happens, you'll look out for him. The first part of this is stuff that you, Niki, Monica, whoever damn well survives need to know. The last part is for Richard, but… he's going to need someone to stick close." Her tone has a subdued kind of urgency. The future has inertia, and today's the day she's supposed to die.

Jaiden's hand closes around Elisabeth's, tilting at the wrist slightly to look down at the gleaming key next to the dull gray of the thumb drive, nodding slightly, his hand closing around hers. "I'm going to have my shortwave radio with me, listening to the emergency bands and police channels to try and get an idea of what's going on, but if there's a channel you have that you listen to, let me know. If I need you, I'll call you."

The thought of her death…his death too, as a matter of fact, is a sobering splash of cold water on the two, Jaiden looking up at the stairs for a moment before letting out a soft exhaled breath, pulling Elisabeth into a tight hug. "You're one of my closest friends, Lizzie. You're not going anywhere. I'm not going anywhere. We may get hurt, we may see a few things we wish we couldn't see, but we're going to survive it. We've got too much to do after this." He slips the thumbdrive into his side pocket along with her key. "I'll keep an eye on Richard. Promise."

Her arms go around his neck and Elisabeth holds him tightly. For a moment, her turbulent emotions threaten to overwhelm her. Her father's already on the road to the Adirondack cabin at her insistence, his girlfriend in tow, with a warning not to listen to the radio. Use the iPod for music, dammit. And she'll text him if she survives the day. She turns her face into the Australian's cheek and kisses him softly. "From your lips to God's ears, Jaiden," she whispers. When she draws away again, the blonde shoves her hair back off her face. "Okay… now that I've had my obligatory 'ohshitwe'realldoomed' moment. How's your bunker set up for supplies?" she asks him, forcing a smile.

Jaiden holds her for a long time, the only reason he's not in hysterics his willpower and the overwhelming need to help those who can't help themselves. It's the curse of being a guy with a conscience. "Well stocked, thank God. I've been spending the past few days since getting back from the past…yes, I went _again_…" Jaiden grumbles slightly. "Anyway, yes, I'm stocked with a few months of food and emergency medicines, the underground gas tanks are full and under lock and key, the solar array is ready, and my dumpster was emptied yesterday. I'm ready to take all comers and defend against any incursions. I just hope I don't have to do it. This riot….it could be the last nail in the coffin for evolved or the crowbar that gets us out of it."

"I hope God's listening, 'cause we can use all the help we can get." Jaiden's mouth quirks up in a small smile. "And when this is over, you and me are going somewhere quiet, crying our eyes out, getting drunk, and celebrating the fact that we're alive."

Oh dear. That makes tears rush to her blue eyes, and Elisabeth's expression stiffens as she reaches up to wipe impatiently at one that escapes. "I'd… like that a lot." But there is uncertainty in her — she's not entirely sure that her luck at escaping death will hold. She was supposed to have died of a bullet to the brain a year ago. She promised Richard she'd wear her helmet, but it got shorted out last night — she's not sure it's functional enough to use. And the standard one may not work well enough for her to use in the midst of today. She blows out a breath and says quietly, "Stay away from helicopters today, willya?" A grin quirks the corners of her mouth. "And for fuck's sake… don't listen to the radio during the period of the broadcast. Just in case."

That tear causes Jaiden to lower his head slightly, his bangs hiding his eyes for a moment, his thumb brushing over her cheek to push that tear away somewhere away. It's time, now, to say the things that need to be said before the battle. Before the shit hits the proverbial fan. "I'm not very good at motivational speeches, Liz, but I learned a few things in my time as a grunt. Hold that in. Use that emotion to stay alive. If things get bad, go somewhere safe. Help those who need your help, but don't try to save those already lost. Think fast but act with conviction. People out there will be looking for someone to turn to, and it's going to be anyone who looks like they know what they're doing. That also means you'll be a target, a big one, so watch your back."

Elisabeth laughs quietly. "Well…. Richard keeps telling me to wear the goddamn helmet, but… Elle sorta shorted it out. Don't tell him, okay?" She shrugs a little. "I'll try to use one of the standard ones, but I may not be able to work with it. It's always been not just stubborn annoyance that kept me from using it." She grins up at him. "That sure sounded like a motivational speech to me, mister." She reaches up to cradle Jaiden's cheeks and stands on her toes to kiss him softly, lingering there for a long moment — not a heated, passion-filled kiss; instead it's one more of affection and perhaps a bit of comfort. "You follow your own advice, okay?" she tells the man quietly, her thumb stroking his cheek. "Don't mess about out there," she instructs as she settles back to her feet, as if the kiss was nothing unexpected. "Make sure you keep the firearms loaded. And keep someone on watch — don't get complacent. Regular riots in this town suck rocks, this one… is going to be worse."

Aric walks down the stairs as he says softly carrying a box labeled Medical Supplies, "You should have the helmet fixed before you go out Lizzie." Aric looks like hell. He looks as if he has not slept, and as if he had been crying a good portion of the night. He moves to the corner of the basement where a second box is labeled, "Dry Goods".

"I've been in a few riots here and there. Mostly third world countries where bullets are plentiful and life is cheap. Never thought I'd see it here, though…but times, they are a' changin." Jaiden nods and steps away from Lizzie just as Aric makes his way down the stairs with his box, watching him for a moment or two before pushing his hands back in his pockets, feeling the key he was given, feeling the thumb drive with his fingertips. "Don't think she has time to get it fixed….with Elle doin' whatever it is she did to it, it'll probably require replacement of just about every bit of electronics in it."

Elisabeth nods to that comment. "Pretty sure it will," she agrees. She looks at Aric, though — she knows what he did last night. "How're you holding up, Aric?" she asks gently. "I know you haven't had time to process it yet… and it can be hard to do. But if you need to talk…" The offer will remain open.

Aric shrugs as he turns to look towards the pair dropping the box at his feet. Aric runs a hand through his messy hair and says softly, "I had hoped if he was dead the commands wouldn't work. When I scanned his mind I got the feeling that this is all gonna happen and its gonna be bad. I didn't want to do it but…I had too. I knew what he did to people and more."

Sadly, Jaiden has no idea what is being discussed. He looks from Elisabeth to Aric and back again before speaking. "You got a place to go when this all goes down, man?"

Intercepting the look, Elisabeth murmurs softly to Jaiden, "Aric was the one who ultimately had to kill Carmichael last night." She grimaces. "Elle's powers went out of control and blew the suits, and so he escaped, and Aric….. ran smack into him." She frowns a bit, "Though I don't remember Carmichael's ability being to disappear or anything." It's the last thing SHE saw.

Aric nods slowly as he says, "I will be monitoring the situation here and will do what I can." Aric moves to sit down and says softly, "He was taken by…" Aric looks around to make sure she is not present. The last thing he needs today is Jessica. "D.L had taken him and phased him through the floor as I under stnd it." Aric looks at the floor studying his shoes for a moment.

"I wish you guys would have brought me along. I know I don't have a suit but I'm pretty good in situations where problems need to be taken care of. And, from what I understand, I'm pretty much the Anti-Elle." As much as Jaiden says he dislikes combat, he sure wants to end up in it a lot. He makes his way over to the cabinet with the guns and opens it, taking a pair of pistols and a small submachine gun. Sure, he can control water, but having some firepower is always a good idea. These are put into a backpack he had stored down here along with a pair of bulletproof vests, so far unused. "hell, I can be the anti-anything if they can't breathe underwater."

Oh shit. "What??" Elisabeth stops dead and stares at Aric. "Jesus fuckin' Christ…. how did D.L. get mixed up in this at all??" She sounds both alarmed and confused. "Did you tell Richard that? D.L. is working for d'Sarthe — the last thing we need is d'Sarthe in bed with Carmichael." Jesus… her brain is whirling from that tidbit. What. the. fuck??

Glancing at Jaiden, Elisabeth admits softly, "I wish you'd been there too — maybe we could have stopped Carmichael from leaving." And thereby kept Aric from getting blood on his hands. She regrets that more than anything else about the situation. Besides the fact that she herself killed a teenaged girl. Which… to be brutal may be part of the reason she didn't sleep a wink last night. And now, at dawn, she's facing one of the worst days ever on no sleep. She'll manage.

Aric shakes his head, "I left the second we got back. I had to get in the shower. His…his blood was all over me." Aric looks down at his hands and says softly, "I had to get his blood for me. I just got here from gathering the last of the supplies I horded in case things go to really bad shit. Ya know."

"We know, we know." Jaiden zips the backpack closed after adding several boxes of ammunition and loaded clips to the bag, hoisting the rattling pack up before re-closing the gun cabinet and locking it, ready to be found by whoever needs it next. "Smart thinking, hoarding a few things, because I figure….hell…" He glances to the ceiling where the sounds of passing traffic are more than likely starting to build. "It'll be weeks before any food delivery. Martial law for a few months after that. It's going to get bad before it gets better."

It's going to get worse than bad, Elisabeth has a feeling. She looks at the two men in the room and her belly cramps with anxiety. At the lowest of low levels, there's an almost constant gentle hum about her this morning; she's struggling to keep the anxiety in check. Sometimes it's working better than others. "Don't tell him that for now. It's too late for it to be important until we make it through today," she instructs. And she pauses then. "Guys…. be careful today." Liz bites her lip and murmurs softly, "Keep the radios off until you know for sure we're in the clear. Once that happens, Aric, Claire can get out there and help if she wants, okay?"

Aric nods slowly and says, "Something tells me if Claire wants to go. I won't be able to stop her. If things turnn into a whirlwind. Get back here. I have enough supplies for 4 weeks. I can at least help with the medical wounds…" Aric shivers, "I will only come out if it is a last resort." It is clear that Aric does not want to have to kill again even in protecting himself.

With a glance to the left, Jaiden buckles his backpack around his waist and over his shoulders, hooking his thumbs in the straps. "Like I told lizzie, I've got my shortwave. It'll be off until the world explodes, but after then, I'll be on the air. If you get hit, or need a way out, call me and I'll do my best to get you out and somewhere safe." He shakes his head ruefully, brushing his hair out of his eyes. "You might want to take a shower. Both of you. Because we're going to be pretty dirty at the end of the day. Might as well start it out clean. And you, Liz….as soon as you can, collapse. Please. I know what it's like doing stuff on no sleep. I know you can do it, but damn, it ain't fun."

Elisabeth smiles faintly. "I think I'm going to go upstairs and catch a catnap," she admits softly. "I have to be at the base in two hours, though." She watches Jaiden and says softly, "Remember your promise, Jaiden." And then she nods to Aric. "If you need anything, Richard's upstairs too — I made him go a couple hours ago to catch a nap. He probably didn't, but … " She shrugs a little. "I tried. And I'll see you both on the other side of this." She hopes.

Aric nods slowly and says, "Be safe. I will be here and call on me if you need me."

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