The Least Likely Thing To Say


matt_icon.gif jessica_icon.gif

Scene Title The Least Likely Thing To Say
Synopsis In a Homeland Security holding facility, Jessica has a chat with someone from her past.
Date January 17, 2009

Homeland Security Holding Facility

Jessica is currently in the cell. She's somewhat less than thrilled at the moment. As if Elisabeth screwing up her work with Niki wasn't bad enough, she got overdosed at the station, and now she's sitting there in a straitjacket. She hasn't tried to break it, though if her strength's working, she can tear it like tissue paper. But if she does that, they're going to show up and either beat her or taser her.

And they wouldn't have far to go, either.

The doorway to Jessica Sander's cell is flanked by two armed DHS officers. They aren't just toting the usual stick and sidearm combo, either. No, these armored boys are carrying M-16s. For a woman like Sanders, even given the fact that her detainment with DHS is temporary, warrants special treatment.

The door to the cell is like the majority of it's front wall - made of shatter and bullet proof glass and affixed with a locking mechanism that sits mostly inside the cinder blocks that make up the rest (about 10) of that particular wall. It's a sturdy structure, but it's current occupant isn't one to be taken lightly.

The identity of this particular criminal turned Company agent is the only reason why Agent Matt Parkman has deemed it fit that he should step away from his busy schedule to stop by and pay her a visit. When he arrives, dressed in his usual dark suit and coat, the two officers stiffen even further in subtle salute until their less physical fit superior casually nods. When he turns his face toward the glass, his expression is drawn. Lack of sleep and an overdose of stress have darkened the area under his eyes, and it looks like he's lost that small bit of weight that only shows up in one's face. He keeps his hands in his pockets. but his eyes squint as he looks through the glass at the woman.

"Do you know why you're here, Agent Sanders?" Parkman isn't about to waste what time he has set aside for this little side-errand with pleasantries. For all he knows and cares, the Sanders woman isn't particularly deserving of any kindness at the moment.

Jessica is annoyed, to put it mildly…and so when she sees Matt, her first expression shows it. Then she looks back to him. "Yes. Because you people are after the wrong person, and no one's bothered to listen to me. But, on the other hand, now that someone with an actual brain is here, maybe we can get that rectified."

The reason WHY she's annoyed might have something more to do than just with her confinement…unless he's specifically blocking it out, Matt will almost hear Niki just -shrieking- at Jessica in anger and outrage. There's a great deal of profanity.

The blonde stands now that Parkman is there, and takes just a couple steps towards the door; enough to show some modicum of "I'm paying attention" without getting close enough to it to be construed as a threat. "But actually, I'm a little confused as to why the hell it's taken this long to get someone with some authority involved in this whole mess."

With as many balls as DHS is constantly juggling, it's not too inconceivable that something, some bit of information, might have slipped through the cracks. Parkman, however, does not look surprised or amused. He knows he has good people in SCOUT and the various arms of DHS - and he trusts them to not slip up in any way that would cost lives, resources, or publicity points.

"Why don't you just fill me in then?" he asks in a somewhat terse tone of voice, perhaps due to what is going on Jessica's head. Or maybe he's late for something. Or maybe…well, there are countless other reasons for anyone like Parkman to be short with someone.

Jessica looks back. "Yes, I put the smackdown on someone to get some information. Yes, that someone happens to be a police officer. YES, that person is also a member of a terrorist organization, and the last thing I knew, they were the bad guys. No, I didn't deal with procedure, because I was trying to get to information that could stop this Volken asshole from ending life as we know it, and because that's not what I'm supposed to be doing. You and Homeland Security are the nice, pleasant, face. I'm the one who gets the dirty jobs done."

"Funny," Parkman says with a subtle lift of his eyebrows. He doesn't sound very amused though.

Looking down, Parkman takes the deep breath of a law enforcement official that Jessica may have heard before in some form or another. "What you don't understand, Sanders, is that you're not the only person working on this case, and frankly? What you've done may have cost us all a very vital connection. As it is, that particular officer is not a member of a terrorist organization, but a humanitarian effort to revitalized the city by aiding those whose lives were strongly impacted by the bomb." Strike one. "Also, I don't give a rat's ass who you are or who you work for, you never lay a finger on any officer. You're a civilian, Sanders, and if you'd killed her? I'd push the plunger myself. There people bigger than you that are dealing with this, so you shut up, do what you're told, and play the part you've been assigned. And you don't fuck up while you do it."

As he speaks, Parkman gets obviously more and more agitated. His face reddens slightly, and his eyes gain that hard quality that glistens only slightly with passion. He takes a breath after his speech, his lips pursing for a moment before he nods his head sharply. "Do we have an understanding?"

Oh, she is SO not happy. At all. Jessica's expression is flat a moment as she reins in her temper. Meanwhile, Niki is chiming in with a loud, emphatic agreement with Matt. Jessica takes a deep breath, and says "Then maybe someone needs to make sure that the people in the field GET this information. No one told me squat about this whole mess. And when I stumbled over it, yes, I tried to do something. To HELP." Boy, was that a mistake. "And as far as not a member of a terrorist group, last I knew, this Phoenix group not only had broken plenty of laws, but used to be part of PARIAH, which we KNOW has broken plenty of laws. If they're hands off, someone should have told us." Frustration clear in her face. "So what do we do now?"

Matt Parkman isn't about to tell Sabra Dalton who to pass information along to and who to keep in the dark. It's not his place. He turns away from Jessica after giving her the decency of at least listening to her rebuttal. "We do what we've been doing. You get comfortable until your employer comes to collect you. You're theirs to worry about." He pauses before he disappears from sight and looks back at the woman on the other side of the glass just long enough to add: "You'd do better if you listened to your other half." Then Parkman is gone, leaving Sanders alone with her psychosis and her guards.

She sees him start to turn, and tries to get him to stop. Verbally, of course. "Parkman! Wait a second!" And then she adds the last thing that anyone in the world would expect to come out of Jessica Sanders. "Please."

But Parkman is already partway down the hall. It is one of Jessica's guards that turns his head and coughs to grab his superior's attention. Parkman turns his head, squinting with anger rather than concentration. He does not reappear, but his voice carries far enough to be heard through the glass.

"Make it quick, Sanders."

She looks to the glass, and approaches it; a few more steps. "Look…" she says, her voice actually sounding…contrite? "If I screwed up, that wasn't the intent. And if you guys decide that you need to "do something" about it…then that's fine. But if that's the decision…you do it?" she asks. "You're probably the one person I know who can do something to me without Niki getting caught in the fallout from all this. This isn't her fault. You can see in my head, you know I'm telling the truth. She had nothing to do with this."

"Protocol isn't something I can just toss away, Sanders." Parkman's voice is as firm as ever, but his face, unseen, softens only slightly after a moment. "I can pass along a reccomendation, though. Sleep tight." Footsteps echo in the hall again, and soon a door opens and closes to let silence reign once more.

January 17th: Halfway
January 17th: Shopping for Misunderstandings
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