The Shattered Mirror


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Also featuring:

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Scene Title The Shattered Mirror
Synopsis When two reflections go to war, glass breaks.
Date July 16, 2009

Tracy's Apartment

Their names are Harry Montgomery and Cecilia Radcliffe, two figures that stand like statues on either side of the door, black suits, glasses, a wire in their ear. Between them, they have a collective count of twelve years of experience and twenty four rounds of ammunition. And they are listening. Not only to the potential radio squawk that could sound at any notice in their ear, but to the ambience of the hallway, and most importantly, the sounds within room, albeit there is not much to listen to.

But they are to listen to it. Over and over again, if Richard has anything to do with it.

Situated within a room not a door down, he hears keener than the secret service agents could ever hope to, currently standing out of some restlessness as he waits, and glances back towards the woman also occupying the room. Agent Lee gives him a thin lipped smile, an open mobile phone in hand. Text scrolls across it, and she simply gives a nod. And it's not silence that descends around the agents just outside, but a recording. A recording of silence.

All very elaborate for what seems, right now, to be a simple meeting within a room.

A version of Nathan Petrelli that has already skipped the fifty-year mark glances back to make sure the door is locked behind him, a hand up to smooth down his tie as he observes the woman who had invited him inside. "You'll forgive me for the delay between when we last spoke and now, I wound up in China much longer than scheduled," he says. "The world's hit interesting times."

Tracy Strauss couldn't be less prepared or more prepared. She's arranged everything - and yet she still has no idea what's going to happen. It's a feeling like one she's never experienced, and that's making her a bit nervous. But, like always, her exterior is icy, even to those who simply brush up against it in passing.

"Understandable," she says with a dismissive wave. "Don't forget how very involved I am in all of that. If you are going to be President, I really wouldn't have you doing anything less than what I expect of Nathan Petrelli." she breezes easily into the kitchen, pouring two glasses of Scotch. "Drink?"

"I could do with one," Nathan states, easily, if coldly as ever. Strange that his first encounter with this woman had come so easily, languid in a professional if warm series of exchanges. This however— everything's changed. And he doesn't want to know how the rest of the world would react to finding out the truth. If nothing else, Tracy Strauss proves that hell could in fact freeze over.

His hands in the pockets of his jacket, he follows her by a couple of steps, though not completely into the kitchen. "I like these words, going to be, as if I haven't for the past several months, now. You have to admit, I'm not necessarily a bad fit."

Tracy manages to hand him the glass without freezing anything. As long as he's facing her, Nathan can move around behind. "But I'd be watching you much more closely. And I will be, I hope you know. People didn't vote for you, and even though I've decided that you would be the better fit for me, I expect you won't start slacking on your responsibilities." She takes a sip from her own glass. A deep sip. None of this will ever sit right with her.

"Nathan Petrelli got to presidency through a technicality, anyway," Nathan states, with a bland smile cast her way, as he takes the drink from her, lifts it into something of a toast. "Here's to the future." Which is only ironic if you know the joke. He seems to find it amusing, anyway, if distantly so - very likely, years at Moab and the promise of more years at Moab sort of dulls the world around you. But not the scotch. That tastes just fine, alighting the senses as he takes a generous sip. He missed that.

He missed all of this.

It's not generousity that his younger analogue waits for now to make a move. It just seems fitting. Alcohol is a great distraction. His feet are about two inches from the ground, and he barely even sees Tracy as he ghosts his way out from her room. It's a gun in his hands, black and silver, and pointing for the expanse of back behind the tailored shark-grey of his suit.

It's sort of like suicide. But, you know. Not nearly as much if this were the otherway around. Impossibly loud within the confines of the apartment, the pistol goes off, and it catches— a part of him. Not his head, at least, but enough for the glass to fall, to skitter against the floor as the older version of himself is caught by the bullet, knocking around and off his feet.

Tracy has an idea of what's going all. All of the things that have been said, the talk of what's been done, of what will be done. It gives the woman some sense of an idea about what is happening here. But all of her thoughts on that matter fall away with the falling of the senior Nathan Petrelli.

She manages to hold onto her own glass. Far be it for her to wreck another one, she just bought these. But she does hit the floor as well, crumpling quickly in the corner. Guns are unpredictable, everyone knows. And she doesn't want to be caught by a stray bullet. Eyes wide, she watches the scene, waiting to ehar the footsteps of Secret Service, if the Company is to fail.

She knew he was planning something. He didn't know what.

If a gun goes off and no one's around to hear it, did it really happen? Not according to the secret service, who only hear the general ambience of the hallway. The sound, however, does travel to the room containing the audiokinetic and his companion, and she looks at him in accusation and vague alarm. Did it work? Richard only smiles at her, leaning on his cane, and shuts his eyes.

And listens.

The future version of Nathan does not scream when the bullet tears higher through his torso, too high for the lung but low enough to imbed. Glass cracks as he hits the ground, an expulsion of breath forced form his lungs, and the younger version of himself's feet hit the ground, brisk strides forward and gun pointed. "You okay?" Though his eyes (and gun) are trained on the crumpled figure of the President, those words are not for him. There's a determined edge in Nathan's voice as he approaches, but obviously adrenaline ridden too. It's hard not to be.

"You shot him!" She points out, rather obviously. Answering to the positive, or the negative, might give it away. Just in case Future Nathan gets away, Tracy wants to make sure she has what Present Nathan isn't even aware she's trying to obtain: deniability.

Slowly, the Communications director stands, setting her glass aside and staying back, against the wall and just watching. Her eyes are wide. He can't kill the man, but she can't express that either: it might give her away. "How bad is it?" She demands of Future Nathan.

Nathan, the one on his feet and dressed in almost militant black, only twists his mouth ruefully at her observation, and tries to resist pointing out that he'll gladly do it again. Close enough, he places a booted foot on the side of the injured reflection, pushes him to lie on his back. His eyes are glassy with pain, jaw clamped against words. "He's fine," the younger Nathan states, the barrel of the gun aimed towards the forehead of— well. Himself, in every way that he isn't. "Manly shoulder wound builds character."

"This how you think you're getting everything back?" the Nathan of the future finally manages to sputter. "No one's gonna believe you. You're a wanted man— "

The gun goes off. Nathan has the decency to jerk it down a few feet just in time, letting it pass, now, through the man's leg, which gains a cry of pain, this time, hands making claws against the kitchen tile. "And yet no one's come running," the one on his feet points out. "Means I have time to make you pay before everything ends here." A glance towards Tracy is given, quizzical in some ways, judging in others - perhaps searching for some sort of absolution. He's not handling this like much of a politician, after all.

As for Tracy? She really doesn't know what to make of this whole scene. "Nathan, no." She finally stays, pushing herself to her feet. She's shaking a bit, but so far, Secret Service hasn't come running in. So far, this really might work. Except…

"You can't kill him. No trial, no jury it's….it's just wrong. We have a system. It's our system. If we don't follow it, who will?"

"You think he follows the rules? You think he deserves fairness?" Nathan asks, his eyes now turned to Tracy, although the gun pointed in general direction of the twice-shot man on the ground, the broken tile beneath him, is enough to pin him in place. "After everything he did to me, this country— "

"Don't worry. He's not gonna kill me. Same reason I didn't put him into the ground. Ego," comes the sneering response from the ground, eyes turned towards the ceiling as if some sort of fate has been accepted. The older Nathan draws in a hitching breath, and doesn't bat an eye when the trajectory of the gun is drawn upwards to point at his forehead. "It would be convenient, but it's not gonna happen."

The younger counterpart takes a breath and steps back, as if attempting to not be drawn into what could be percieved as a challenge of kinds. A dare. He says nothing, for now, thoughts going at their own pace, though his jaw tightens in tension when the injured man manages to prop himself up on his elbows, shift back enough to let his shoulders rest against the wall.

"See, he's thinking, now," the older Nathan says, with a short breath of laughter. "Always happens after the action's taken. We used to be wiser than this."

Quite abruptly, movement seems to fill the space. A gust of wind, kinetic energy, rattling liquor bottles enough to send one to the floor with a wet smash, and at Tracy's feet, a gun thrown from a loosened hand clatters to the ground, a few feet away. In space of two seconds, the formerly prone man shoots like a cannon straight into the other, injuries be damned. There's a tremendous slam as two bodies go hurtling into the wall, enough to crack plaster.

To hell with that. There's a gun at Tracy's feet, and she's praying to every saint she never learned as a child that the men outside have no idea what's going on. Hopefully her neighbors think she's just having a really loud night. Stranger things have happened.

Tracy is quick to pick up the gun, aiming it at the mass o' Nathan. "Stop it, both of you, or I'll shoot you both and take over the country on my own!" Of course she won't, but it's what comes to her mind at the time.

They look about to come apart - perhaps due to Tracy's demand, or gravity, or a well placed kick. A table goes over, something expensive gets knocked off the shelf, and around the time the woman might seriously be considering letting loose a bullet after all—

There's an almighty crash. Tangled figures, limbs clad in grey worsted wool and black fatigues, seem to have the same idea, or the stronger of the two has one at least. Glass falls inwards, but most of it sprays outwards like water in overlarge shimmering shards. There's almost a sound like vacuum as the two suddenly go plummeting out the nearest, biggest window, tearing curtains free of their hang, a gaping, unshielded opening towards the sky, which— is where they are inevitably headed.

Leaving Tracy alone, the still warm gun in her hands that rarely get cold otherwise.

Glass. Aside from the fighting, watching two Presidents go mano y mano, glass is what is in Tracy's mind. And, before she can hit the ground, it's in her arms, a few cuts on her face - nothing serious, but she might need a stitch or two in one place or another. It helped that, at the last second, she drew her arms up to protect her face.

As they tear out of the apartment, Tracy falls to the ground, landing hard on her left side. And that's where she remains, panting, breathing heavily. The warm gun in her hands suddenly beings to cool, and when she looks at it again, it's completely ice.

She just stares a moment, at everything. At where she is. But the footsteps break her of it, cause her to drop the gun and let it shatter, hoping it will blend with the glass long enough.

The door opens forcibly a moment later, a gunshot-like sound in its own right. The agent betrays nothing on his face, despite the probable feelings of shock and horror that he somehow missed the chaos, that the wool had been pulled so effectively over his eyes— or rather, his ears. He's professionalism embodied, however, moving with his partner past Tracy, to inspect the rest of the apartment, guns pointed and murmurs being directed into their comms devices.

The President isn't here. Neither of them are.

They're quickly followed by another man, far less impressive in many respects. A suit of tweed over a high necked sweater, although the identification he takes out is obviously that of the DHS. His attention for his surroundings is summed up in a scoping glance but is redirects to the woman, and she's offered a kind smile. He moves on closer, and his brown polished shoe crunches glass and ice beneath the sole.

"Miss Strauss? My name is Agent Grant Fitzgerald, Department of Homeland Security?" he states, too much earnestness for a hardened agent of the government. "We should get that looked at," he adds, with a pointed glance to where she's bleeding freely from the forehead, then back to her eyes, "and then I think you should come with me."

In the doorway, another figure has appeared. Agent Lee, who Tracy had met beforehand in all their careful planning on behalf of Agent Denton, stands with her arms folded, Homeland Security identification on her belt. She offers the blonde woman a wink— and who knows how reassuring that could possibly be.

Glass and ice crunch as Tracy begins to move. Her mouth is slightly agape - even someone as cool as Tracy has her limits, and she's crossed them now. Or has she? It will certaintly be interesting to find out more.

She finally gets to her feet, shivering a bit as she glances around her - once peice of ice-gun left that might look even a little odd. Her first step toward the DHS officer crunches it into a million peices. "Where are we going?"

Grant only glances down towards the crunch, but nothing reads on his face, not in a million years. He holds out a hand as if to guide her. "For a walk," he replies, facetiously, and quietly adds as soon as they hit the hallway, and Lee falls into pace, "Unless you'd like to get arrested, but I think we can avoid that if we take my car. We need to ask you a few questions."

Lee flashes a smile her way as she adds, "And answer a few questions."

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