The Sales Pitch


maria_icon.gif martin_icon.gif

Scene Title The Sales Pitch
Synopsis On his first day as Interim Assistant Director, Martin Crowley is already making changes within the Company…
Date February 8, 2010

Biomere Research Inc

It's Monday, a day on which people who have jobs work. So the alarm goes off in the morning, she eats some variety of breakfast. Showers, brushes teeth, and gets dressed. Now, most would go out to the car, or grab a taxi, maybe walk or use some form of public transportation for getting to work. But Maria Delgado isn't most people. She simply opens a window in her apartment and jumps out.

Ten minutes or so later she's descending toward pavement just outside the Biomere building. When feet touch down she starts walking, it's as if she's doing the most natural and commonplace thing in the world. Inside are the elevators, and the people, then the lab where she works. One of her projects, unknown to the woman, is a component of the SLC test so recently brought into mass production.

Biomere Research Incorporated has gone through a lot of directional changes in the time Maria has been working here, from the sudden departure of public relations director Roger Goodman to the changing of hands of the corporation's financial backers and the collapse of its business partner Primatech Research Incorporated. So many researchers have come and gone over the last year, changing jobs and switching departments, and rumors among the staff is that Biomere is facing financial difficulties as of late, likely tied to the closure of Primatech Research.

It's on her way to her desk at the research and development lab that Maria Delgado sees from a distance a passingly familiar face. A dark-haired man who is juxtaposed between unkempt and classically dressed. His suit is well pressed and expensive, but his hair is long, curly and in a stylishly messy affair that someone meshes with his five o'clock shadow at eight in the morniing. He's one of the many faces from up on the accounting floor, currently seated with one leg propped up on the corner of Alyssa Randall's desk, a co-worker who shares the opposite side of Maria Delgado's desk.

"…so then I said t'er, that's not whiskey, that's cranberry sauce!" The British accent comes off with a smooth and dignified cadence, and both he and Ms.Randall's laughter is a little unusual for a typically buttoned-down work environment. Just another sign of changes happening inside of Biomere.

Her eyes only briefly settle on those two as she heads for that desk, inwardly wondering what changes that new HR guy, Thompson, will make next. Maria sets down her messenger bag and removes her coat, hanging them from a convenient hook on the wall, then heads for the coffee pot. While walking an energy bar is taken from a pocket, the wrapper is peeled back, and she bites into it. It's a ritual the flying woman performs each morning on arriving for work, and one which repeats just before she leaves. Word is she needs the fuel as part of that airborne thing she does.

"Ah— sorry miss Randall, duty calls." Leaning up from the corner of his desk where he was flirting with Maria's co-worker, the scraggly haired man from accounting offers a broad smile and a hand out towards Maria across the desk. "Sorry for the abrupt presence an' all that Miss Delgado. My name's Martin Crowley, I'm legal counsel for Biomere? I actually 'ave something rather unrelated to my normal, ah, duties here I was wonderin' if I could discuss with you in private?" He only realizes, there, that it sounds like a flirtatious solicitation.

"I— mean that in the most professional manner, a'course." A nervous glance is afforded below the frames of his glasses to the researcher he was just hitting on. "It's a matter of a business opportunity tha' some of the higher ups 'ere at Biomere wanted to extend to you? S'kind of government contract work?"

The coffee pot serves forth precious dark liquid into a cup, which she adds sugar and Cremora to while listening as Martin addresses her. A small straw designed for the purpose is used to stir and soon the cup's contents more closely match Maria's skin tone. "A business opportunity, contract work," she echoes. "I've worked for the Government before, when I was Navy," the man is told, "still am in fact. Reserves. My Navy job was monitoring contracts, actually."

Grimacing, Martin rubs at the back of his neck and glances from Maria to the floor, then back up again. "Well, your military experience is actually part've what I wanted to talk to you about. But— ah— " Martin's eyes flick down towards Maria's deck, then back up to her with a lopsided grin. "If you could follow me?" He motions to the direction of the elevators, taking a few steps away from the desk, tucking his hands casually into the pockets of his slacks as he walks backwards.

"I've already cleared this time with your supervisors too, so tha's no worry with missin' an hour or so've work. Trust me, opportunities like this only come up every once in'na while." There's a wink of one of Martin's eyes as he makes his way towards the elevator still.

Turning around finally, Martin makes his way towards the open elevator, making certain to hold the closing doors for Maria before stepping out of the way and pressing the call button for basement level B-4, it's the same floor that Roger Goodman used to get off on as well, a restricted research level. Once the elevator doors close, though, Martin Crowley is already beginning what surmises as an interview— and it echoes with something that Maria Delgado had heard months ago from the very man who used to get off on this level.

"'Ow would you react, Maria, if I told you that Biomere didn't jus' do biological research and development, but was a part've… somethin' bigger?" There's a crook of one of Martin's brows as he folds his arms, leaning his back up against the interior of the elevator. "What would you think about the hypothetical of there bein' a government-liason agency, sort've an… intermediary between th' Evolved an the Department a'Homeland Security? An' what if a'told you tha' an agency like this was lookin' for talented people such's yourself, t'join them and help DHS investigate and assess Evolved criminal threats?"

He's being remarkably forward.

"I'm a biochemist, not a spy," Maria replies with a slight laugh, "Mr. Crowley." Eyebrows raise, as she studies his face with her head tilting. "What sort of investigations are you speaking of?" It's an odd feeling she's gotten, as if some of the conspiracy theory crap floating around out there might actually be true. Or more likely that DHS has clandestine things happening and by virtue of their secrecy has caused wild speculation to happen.

"Nothing quite spy about what we do, Miss Delgado…" Martin pauses, arms folded across his chest and head bowed slightly. "Well— Alright there's a little spy work in'nit, but it's a relatively large agency. Back in'na 1940s when the OSS was formed, it was a covert government op'ration tha' never got public attention and, on paper, ne'er existed. We're kinda' like that, and I guess one day we'll get shoe-horned inta' somethin' public like the OSS became the CIA, but for right now s'all baby steps, yeah?"

Reaching up to thread hair behind one ear, Martin furrows his brows and shifts his weight to one foot as the elevator continues to descend. "The organization a'work for specializes in investigation of Evolved crimes. Things like, if a puppeteer manipulates a'man int'a killin' someone, we try'n figure out who the puppeteer was, an all'a that. Wasn't always that way, but it's what it is now. We've… a long time've specializations under our belts. T'be honest, miss Delgado, the group I work for's known 'bout people like you since the nineteen sixties. We worked, tirelessly, tryin' t'protect an' keep the Evolved safe an' out've the public eye. Till we failed in our biggest mission, an' the Midtown Man sorta' ruined it all."

The elevator stops, doors opening to floor B-4. Martin glances out into the white-painted hall, then steps out ahead of Maria, turning after a few paces to look over his shoulder and motion for her to walk and talk with him. "We'd like you t'join us, use your skills t'help solve crimes tha' normal government agencies can't do quite yet. But m'sure you've a million questions…"

"So what you're looking for with me," Maria asks, "isn't so much a field worker as a CSI type for Evolved crimes? Forensics and suchlike?" She exits the elevator, following after the man, as questions do indeed come forth. "You said the top levels pointed you my way, so… this is just a front for the DHS branch? Or are you meaning it'd still be Biomere work, I'm just being vetted for possible participation in classified activities this firm does as a contractor?"

"When I say came from the top, a'certainly meant top." Martin admits with a crooked smile, walking Maria past a series of panoramic glass windows with blinds drawn, flanking the pair on either side of the hall. "Tha'd be part've your job description, yes, also potentially dealing with violent Evolved criminals, which's where your military backgroun' comes in. You're a smart cookie, Delgado, sharp knife an' all that. Nobody in my line've work's ever specialized, we all sort've do the same job, an' have some talents that shine. But everyone helps investigate leads on dangerous Evolved, follows up on tips from the Department of 'Omeland Security, an' other local an' federal agencies on occasion."

Coming to a four-way junction in the hall, Martin turns left and glances over his shoulder to make sure Maria's followed. "You'd be liscened as an operative of DHS, with all'a th' authority that comes with it, an' given a paired up wi'a non-evolved partner. It's a motto've our organization…" Martin comes to a pair of double doors, pushing one side open to reveal a conference room. "One'a us, one'a them."

Entering the conference room behind the man, she floats a speculative question, one that's something of a conclusion. "You told me people like me have been known about since the sixties. The way you said that tells me you don't have an ability tied to the SLC."

"Evolved, by the way, is something of a misnomer. It's debatable whether or not we actually represent such a leap forward. And one could easily claim we've been around for thousands of years. What the bible and other books of historical religion call miracles…"

"You got me spot on there, miss Delgado, m'not like you. Jus' an average guy who up until the collapse of our cover operation, really liked t'sell paper." There's a flash of a smile from Martin as he holds the door open for Maria, then steps in to the empty conference room behind her, letting the door close by itself. The conference room is unremarkable, save for its quality; a polished glass table surrounded by plush leather chairs. Martin pulls one out for himself, then motions for Maria to take a seat wherever, judging fromt he flippant wave of his hand. A bright red folder has been left on the table at the seat Martin has chosen.

"If'n you ask me, Evolved's a terrible choice'a word. Unfortunately, a'was no' part've the deliberation on tha' bit. A'think the term Special an' Powered was tossed 'round, but that' stupid Suresh book sort've took th' title…" There's a shake of Martin's head as he opens the file, paging through it. "Oh an'… about tha' 'ole thousands a'years thing?" There's a look of Martin's eyes up to Maria. "You'd no' be far off. I've personally 'eard of a man 'oo was over two 'undred years old thanks t'his ability…"

"Two… hundred years?" Maria asks, eyes widening a bit. "That's… different. Still, that abilities have been around thousands of years makes perfect sense. People who had them would be able to cast themselves as divine or semi-divine. Maybe in some cases neither confirm nor deny, just using their talents and letting populations call them what they chose. And it ties into the various witch hunts of history too."

"Witch hunts is one way t'put it, yes…" Martin distractedly agrees, tapping a finger against his lower lip as he pages thorugh the file. "My ah— the company I work for is looking at you for something a little less Biblical, but I hope that you're fine with that." Looking up over the frames of his glasses, Martin's brows crease together, giving him somethign of an earnest and concerned look. "Do, ah, you think what've talked to you about is something you might be willing to pursue? I figure this is the part where you've got all sort's of questions about why we do what w'do and how an' all'a that, yeah?" He leans back in his chair with a creak of the padding, folding his hands in front of himself and clearing his throat awkwardly. "I mean— I assume you 'ave questions. It'd be a bit weird if you didn't."

"What exactly would my role be?" Maria inquires. "You said people working with this branch of DHS do many jobs, from field work to laboratory tasks. But not all of them are biochemists with Master's degrees, I'm sure. You don't have a forensics department, which studies and analyzes evidence from scenes to establish the identities of persons involved? Or which works within the realm of physics to establish abilities used when one or more may have been in play, rendering it other than obvious? And… if you've been working with people having the SLC for so long, has a compound to block their uses been developed? Or to remove them entirely upon conviction for crimes which involve misuse."

"Field work, for me, would seem to involve complete retraining."

Eyes up to the ceiling in thought, Martin toys with his lower lip and contemplates the proper answer. "Well, we do have a forensics lab, but in New York only one primary forensics investigator with direct employment to our organization. If you'd prefer a lab job, we could more than willingly supply you with such a thing. There do come cases where death by Evolved abilities comes up, and frankly local and federal authorities still aren't prepared to handle those cases. So, our arrangement with them affords us some flexibility. We train their people how to handle and recognize those cases, and we get to continue what we've been doing."

Martin taps his fingers on the file. "Now admittedly, some of the Company's field work does fall under a more… I guess you could say martial protocol? I don't know exactly how we mesh with FRONTLINE, to be honest, since we are civillian authority and they're supposed to help us. But we tend to do things on our own, detaining and questioning Evolved criminals under the ah, umbrella of Homeland Security. Admittedly our organization does have some black spots on its history…"

Martin looks down at the folder, then back up to Maria again. "Like all government branches we've 'ad out own fair share of scandal and, ah… inappropriate conduct. My actual job is Internal Affairs for the Company, so it's sort've my job t'cut those things off 'as they 'appen. But, you'll be 'appy to know that as of last year we're under a bit of, I guess you could call it new management, which means we're operating on a less— severe methodology."

Furrowing his brows, Martin stares down at the folder again, thoughtfully silent for a moment. "What I guess I want to know, is do you want a future in this company? We offer— well I guess the proper word would be absurd benefits and payment, as well as other fringe benefits for our associations and history. Ah," one finger scratches at the side of Martin's cheek, "We could give you a lab job, yes. Though you may be asked to accompany agents into the field strictly for security purposes… there's also some special training you'd be undergoing— mental defense training to resist psychic invasion, I think you have all the self-defense things covered so I could waive those…" he's apparently looking at a checklist in front of him before he glances back up to Maria, one brow quirked in silent query.

Silence is held across a stretch of time, during which it seems the flying woman is considering the offer placed before her. "Truth be told, Mr. Crowley, I love doing biochem work, with the potential of discovering new and fascinating things. But I also like the outdoors. The freedom of not being stuck in a lab every day. It would be good to serve in a position which has elements of both. There are times," she explains, "when being inside a building seems like being a caged bird."

"So I'm interested."

Grinning broadly, Martin clasps his hands together. "Brilliant." Reaching down for the pen next to the folder, Martin fills out a few lines on some sort of document in front of himself, brows furrowed and head quirked to the side. "Right, well then. What I can do for you, is forward information pertaining to your interest to Eric Thompson— I believe you and he have met before— he's one of my superiors on both sides of the line, as it were." There's a furrow of Martin's brows, lips crooked into a proud expression for a job well done.

"He'll afford you with training information, details on all of the little odds an' ends I don't have the paperwork here for. On the outside, you'll be retaining your position here at Biomere— on paper only— while you'll be out-sourcing yourself with a branch of the Department of Homeland Security on paper as well to explain your absence from the office. I ah…" Martin taps his chin with the back of the pen. "Agent Lashirah Lee is our head forensics expert down at the lab, and she'll likely be the one you're partnered up with for this. Since she's one've me, and you're one've— well— you." There's a good-natured smile to the comment at least.

"I guess with that settled…" Martin rises up form his chair, brushing flat the front of his suit jacket. "You can report to," one hand pulls up a sheet of paper and slides it out to Maria. "This address tomorrow morning to meet with Mr.Thompson, and he'll take you out to our facility." After the paper is set in front of Maria, Martin offers a hand out to her. "You've got the rest of the day off, if you'd like. And ah…"

"Welcome to the Company."

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