The Irishman's Test


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Scene Title The Irishman's Test
Synopsis Candy passes.
Date October 15, 2009

Midtown Bunker

Beneath the melted glass and ash slagged crust of Midtown's firetorn but navigable fringes, an open span of fifty year old concrete bunker hunches out of sight and out of mind. Once abandoned, boxes of ancient crackers left to moulder and metal drummed water left to leak, the facility has found new life at the will of Emile Danko. Metal runged steps descend at an austere angle from a steel hatch hidden from prying eyes by the scrap melted to its exterior, the first empty room cold and cramped under a string of sickly yellow lights. From there it branches off, stunted into only a few blocky rooms north south east and west, some darker than others.

Cardboard boxes line a wall here, groundwater drips black through a cracked corner of the ceiling over there. Voices distorted by muffling humidity and an unreliable echo play damp off the walls, quiet despite their tendency to carry. It's hard to tell what this damp, subterranean environment might have been before the bomb, but telltale signs painted yellow and black marked with Fallout Shelter give an indication. This place was once a bank, a bank gutted by the bomb and looted by opportunists and now occupied by Humanis First, Emile Danko's fortress.

It's hard to imagine a place like this going unnoticed just below the streets of Manhattan.

Buried beneath the bombed out shell that was once a national banking chain, is the hive center of New York City's largest Humanis First cell. Accessed by means of a collapsed parking garage, a tunnel has been dug connecting the bank's inaccessible basement level. The concrete walls are damp with moisture, some thirty Humanis First operatives that Candace Allard spies on making her way inside look like the remnants of some scattered military force. Boxes of ammunition, automatic weapons, rocket launchers, stacks of money likely looted from the bank — all number of unexpected surprises line her path behind the man leading her deeper into the dragon's den.

His name is known only as The Irishman, rumors among Humanis First claim he was a stock broker or businessman before the bomb, others claim he's an international gun running. None of them are really close to the truth. "…the prisoners ain't gettin' fed till tomorrow. Another one'a me boys will handle that then." Accent and all, like a box of Lucky Charms he is. "What yer gon' be doing is administering a shot of morphene to th' blonde prisoner, 'Elena Dean." The Irishman walks past a pair of men arming what looks like bricks of C4 with remote detonators, "She gets a quarter-syringe of morphine every 4 hours. Don' give any t' the other girl. Don' even listen to th' other girl. Don' fuckin' talk to th' other girl."

Their approach eventually leads Candace to where Helena is being kept. It's a bank vault converted into a prison cell. Two guards armed with M-16s watch the door, and the Irishman makes Candy stay back as he dials through the combination and opens the huge, heavy vault doors to the gloomy vault beyond. One gloved hand goes out, offering a syringe, "Go handle her noon dosage. I'll b' back in twenty minutes."

Candy looks at the man, her impassive face back on once more as she is deep under her cover. The woman taking a deep breath while she nods her head. "Right, so, this one gets a dose every four hours, and don't do anything with the other one that you've got under here. Not a problem at all." She likes the fact that she doesn't have to mess with the other girl, at the same time that she dislikes it. Knowing that if she did, it would more than likely never be anything good. Looking along the moisture that clings to the concrete walls, the hydrokinetic smiles inwardly, prehaps when the place is rid of all the pests that infest it, she might look into making this her own little makeshift home away from home. Certainly it would be more than secure, and easily defendable. Taking a deep breath, she begins to walk into the gloom beyond the door, her eyes peering into the darkness as she tries to discern the form of the person that she'll be either giving a dose of morphine too, or not. She merely hopes that they have no cameras set up in this dank and dark place.

Even though the vault gives no indication of day or night, Helena has started timing increments by when she receives her dosage. Wendy is out like a light, asleep against the railing. A few feet away, Helena is shackled, her eyes shadowed, body shivering. She's the one who lifts her head as the door is opened. Also? The two girls stink. Three…four? Days of being unable to shower, and not even having a bucket to leave their waste in. Fortunately, not being fed means there's little waste to worry about.

The Irishman lingers for a moment, watching Candy with his head cocled to the side, then brushes a hand over the top of his curly red hair and snorts audibly. Focus snaps to one of the guards, "I'll be back in twenty, 've go' t'figure out where th'fuck Bill is." The Irishman's shoes click-clack across the floor, and the guardsmen close the vault door just enough so only a sliver of light gets in, leaving Candy in the quiet isolation of the bank vault to administer the shot.

Seeing the forms of the two women, Candace Allard lets out a quiet sigh of relief. If they are both in the same place, then that makes any kind of operation all the more easier. As for now, she is faced with a tough choice. She knows that the fact that she is in this deep is something that is almost priceless and can provide intel for Phoenix. On the other hand, the woman is torn, her eyes looking at the two woman, and deep down inside of her, she knows that she cannot go through any more of what she has done in the past. She knows that she can no longer sit idley by and watch as more of her family is tortured, killed, or worse. As that internal battle wages inside of her, Candy doesn't let any of it reach her face, her expression calm and stoic after three months of learning to keep her innermost thoughts away from her expression. She merely walks towards the form that seems to be concious and asks in a soft voice, hoping that it will not reach to the guards at the door. "Helena?"

"Don't." The hiss is soft, almost too difficult to hear. "Don't say my name like you know me. They could be watching." She begins to press herself against the rail, saying in a louder voice, "Please…no more morphine. I'm going to get sick. Please! Wendy's in pain, she needs it."

"I was merely asking to confirm that you were the concious one," Candy says softly, as she turns to look out the door. Her mind still split on what to do, and even if it is a good idea to even contemplate some kind of escape plan. She struggles to think of what could be done, the only thing that her mind can think of is to get past them and bring down the walls by using the moisture in them. Her eyes look back at Helena, as she says, "Hold still, damnit." So far, the young woman hasn't made any kind of movement to even try to stick the needle into Helena, still thinking.

Helena is stock still, her eyes unreadable due to the excessive amount of shadows in the vault. She doesn't say anything, just waits. Her expression is one of dulled awareness, perhaps feigned now that she's creeping up on the back end of her dose. Her ability's never left her; just her capacity to wield it has been signficantly restrained.

Candy continues to look at Helena while she stands there, the young woman really having to wage a battle inside of her. Her eyes go over to the unconcious woman, before they look back to Helena again. She knows she only has so much time to make up her mind, so she finally makes it up as she plunges the needle into Helena's arm and pushes the plunger. Her mask cracking for a bit in the gloom as she is forced to do more harm against her family. Taking a breath, she turns around and tries to get herself under control, before starting to walk out.

Good. Good. Helena's eyes close and she wavers a bit as the morphine pumps through her body. Candy didn't get caught, as far as she can tell, and Wendy was sleeping and didn't announce Candy being Evolved to everyone, not that they'd necessarily believe her. Helena's gone over the idea of telling some of the others who've come in about Bill, but thus far, she hasn't. She tries to adjust her position on the rail, slumping a little to doze and trying not to think of how hungry she is.

Bill Dean isn't who Candy expected to see when she left that cell door. Standing with his arms folded and head bowed, brows furrowed and one foot tapping, he looks to the syringe, then up to the armed guards and flashes a smile. "Not bad, girl." A few steps are taken towards Candy as he relaxes. "You did yerself a good job in there. Y'passed ol' Irish's test. Me an' him had a pool goin' as t'whether you'd lose yer fuckin' nerve. He owes me a chorizo now, lil' potato-eatin bastard."

Cracking a smile, Bill offers his hand out towards Candy with a lopsided smile. "Good job, gal. You got yerself a place with the team here. Don't worry 'bout the injections, we've got a shift a'boys to handle it. You'll only have t'worry about it twice a day. For now, jus' get yerself armed," he nods back to the weapons locker, "clear out Chavez' footlocker and pick a bunk. We got access down to th' subways t'get outta' here on foot. Nobody leaves here on strete level durin' the daytime. I'll have Hugo show ya th' back ladder entrances."

Candy even manages to get a smile while she stands there looking at Bill, "Well, I'm glad to see that I managed to make you something there, Bill." She looks around before asking, "Any weapon that you would recommend? Don't suppose you have any Kalashnikovs around, or is that just wishful thinking?" Her eyes looking squarely at Bill while she waits for an answer, her mind in so much turmoil that a shrink would spend five minutes with her and have his eyes light up with dollar signs.

"Ha ha listen to this little girl would ya? Ahaha! Kalashnakovs." Shaking his head, Bill wraps one arm around the young woman's shoulder and starts to lead her away from the vault and towards the arms locker area as the vault guards seal the door shut again. "I'll get you a nice shiny Glock an' then maybe we'll talk about a rifle of some kind. We've got big things planned girlie, don't you think otherwise. Big, big things."

As Bill emphasizes that, Candy sees thorugh a narrow and broken down doorway a room filled with bricks of C4, a mountainof plastic explosives wired and ready to be used, but with that much plastique, the only thing that Humanis First could be hoping to bring down is an entire city block.

This is only going to get worse before it gets better.

Cat has to be told.

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