The Unknown


bones_icon.gif claire2_icon.gif

Scene Title The Unknown
Synopsis Claire meets the newest resident of the Library.
Date January 19, 2010

New York Public Library

Clouds in the sky, keep the world outside dark… very dark. Something about that sort of dark makes it feel colder. That cold, bothers Clair as it bring up memories from just a mere couple of days ago. Of stepping through -32 degree weather to save the world. The pitch darkness brings thoughts of a black mushroom cloud stretching into the sky.

The tiny regenerator is coming home from her meeting in Central Park, her talk with Cat and Eileen left Claire some stuff to think about. Cardinal's little group of end gamers would have to buckle down and start working to protect their asses from whatever the government had planned.

This is what is going through Claire's mind as her combat boots scuff on the marble steps into the library. It's quiet there… eerily quiet without anyone there… or at least no one she's aware of.

Perhaps not… too quiet. On the outside that silence is practically deafening, only the wind rustling papers and other debris being heard. On the inside, while it is quiet, can be made out the dull thudding of… music? Naw. Couldn't be. But that thudding sure has a beat to it. The cartography room may look dark and hallow from the outside, but that is only because of the plastic weathering tarps that have been installed over the big bay windows, studio foam put in place to mute the sounds within.

Bones has definitely straightened the place up in the time that he has taken up residence in the room. Practically bringing it back to its former glory, really, save for what needed to be thrown away and alternate furniture move in to it to serve his purpose. The chandeliers are even lit up thanks to a step-down converter and a couple emergency batteries attached to the fuse box. Inside the room he is sitting at one of the tables with a set of blueprints laid out, various objects acting as paperweights to keep it open and in his hands is a large MRE meal. He stabs at it with a plastic fork, eating something that is probably suppose to be scrambled eggs in ham but looks like green eggs and spam…

The doors to the room, which have small handwritten signs on them that read 'UNDER CONSTRUCTION', are open to about a foot-wide crack, and indeed Billy Joel's Why Should I Worry is playing over a boom box to which Bones bobs his head to, dreadlocks flailing a little as he fidgets, going over the plans.

It takes a moment for Claire to hear the sound as she moves further into the library. Pausing, she turns slightly, twisting her body to following the sound. Spotting the door and it's sign, brows lift high on her head. Curious, the blonde follows the music, hand pressing to the door and slowly open it, her other hand lowering to rest at the small of her back. A girl can't be too careful when she doesn't know who is who anymore, not to mention time in Madagascar has made her just a touch paranoid. She calls out over the music.


Bones had been in the middle of mouthing the music over a bite of food when he heard that voice call over the robust lyrics, jerking his head to look over at the doors which had been pushed open a little more to allow Claire in. Casually and slowly, he sets his MRE down on the the table in front of him and picks up the remote to the boombox, clicking the pause button. "Uh…hi." he says, making his greeting sound like more of a question as he sets the remote down, cocking his head to the side as he notices that both of her hands are not out front. His posture shifts, becoming more alert, though instead of his muscles tensing like most people's, he seems to relax further. "Can I help you with anything?" he asks rather politely. "Popcorn? Crackers? MRE? Gatorade? Water?" All things that don't need to be refrigerated and will keep forever practically if packaged properly.

Studying the strange man, Claire goes over some names Liz gave her when she brought her here. "Are… you… Mack?" The words are measured and filled with uncertainty. "I… ah… am Claire. I live here…. or so I have been told." Odd. She gives a cautious glance over her shoulder, ears listening, before she turns slowly back to the guy in the room. The young woman doesn't move from the door, her whole body is tense, ready to move just in case.

"I sure as hell hope I am not Mack." Bones grins easily, giving a light chuckle. "You know Mack if you saw him. Guy looks like a cop and has a chip on his shoulder that is more like a whole corn tortilla. Naw, I'm Bones. Nice to meet you, Claire." he says, leaning his hip against the table and slides along it towards her, moving nice and slow. "You must be one of the ones returning from that…'thing'." he surmises, obviously having not been briefed on her recent activities, only told they were away. "You're welcome to come in and have a seat. I was just eating dinner and doing a little studying."

"Bones?" The name doesn't seem to ring a bell with the tiny blonde. "Soooo… your the unknown, Mack told us about?" Claire finally lets her hand drop from her back to slip it into a pocket. "And yes.. I'm one of the ones coming back." She doesn't exactly come out of the doorway yet, she doesn't trust this stranger yet. "Didn't get told you were living here." A frown creases her brow."

"Oh…" He says, his expression dampening a note but his brows raise. "Mack said I could stay so long as I kept myself sequestered to the ground level and up but I can just as easily leave if you would prefer. I can certainly see how you might be uneasy, coming home and finding a stranger living in it, having dug in and installed everything but a big screen." Bones leans back, snatching up his MRE and takes another bite. "I'll leave you guys the batteries and the food stuffs I got." he notes, walking with his food back over to the blueprint and begins pick up a few things, tossing them in to a leather satchel.
ooc I swear my youngest is going to be a cook.. He's watchign the cooking competitions and is soooo into them.

Hands lift and she makes a stalling motion. "No no… Liz said Mack was trustworthy… So if he said you could stay, then it's fine." Claire sounds a touch annoyed, if at him or something else it's uncertain. Her voice sounds a touch strained as she tries to explain, a hand running through long blonde hair. "It has… just been a couple of long months… so I'm a bit on edge. So.. just.. stay."

Stalling as directed, he looks back at her and shrugs his shoulders. "Really, it's no problem. The people at the over-night refuge know me fairly well and will put me up for the night." Bones assures her, studying her features for a moment before nodding slowly. "Well if you are sure. I don't want to give people who have had a hard time an even harder time.” That's when it happens: the skin along his forearms literally crawls, rippling over something that moves underneath the surface. It's a bit of movement that might be missed, but then, it might not. He is silent for a moment before he offers, "Coffee?"

"Just stay, so I don't get accused of causing some sorta problem." Claire gives him a bit of a smile finally, though it only pulls at a single corner of her lips. There is something missing on the young blonde, her eyes don't show the same emotion… the almost seem empty in a way. "And.. yeah, coffee would be great. Been a long day from getting back and getting caught up with family and all."

There is a bit of a hesitation before Claire takes a step into the room, "So.. what is it exactly you do?"

"Well, I wouldn't be the one accusing you." Bones says as he wanders over to the side of the room, plugging in a rather cheap Mr. Coffee to an emergency battery supply and picks up a jug of water, pouring in a cup or two worth and puts in a filter with a couple scoops of ground coffee. "I hope you like a strong Brazilian. I don't skimp when it comes to the Joe." he smiles, turning the machine on and steps back, drawing out a chair from the table for her and walks himself back around to the other side. "Do? Well funny you should ask. My job is how I kind of stumbled on to you guys. The simple answer is I'm an engineer and building inspector. The not-so simple answer is that I'm a Sandhog, specializing in urban exploration and safety and danger assessment. One of the guys who, if we're doing our job right, you never ever see."

A brow twitches upward and she looks a bit amused, "A… sandhog… can't say I have heard of those." Claire moves further in, but she keeps distance between them, not much trust there. "At least your not someone I have to relearn," she murmurs thoughtfully. Glancing at the room, checking out his work, she states a little louder. "So… now your living here and… rebuilding the place?" she sounds a bit surprised at that. "It kind of takes away from the fact it's suppose to look like a ruin."

"Just on the inside." He assures her, gesturing at the blueprints that are laid out on the table. "I was ordered to inspect the building and part of the job is asking any unauthorized inhabitants to leave along with reporting any suspicious activity." Bones nods in her direction and then twitches his head a little to the side, indicating the living quarters set up below along with other various things. "So as a precaution, should anyone come in here in an official capacity having heard something or seeing someone walk in and out, I put in the file that I would be doing some secondary work and inspection on the building. That way I can explain away any oddities going on for you guys. But I have to have something to show for it if my supervisor decides to check up on me." he explains, giving a shrug and rests his rather large and bony knuckles on the table.

The young regenerator can't help be look impressed. "What… all did Mack tell you we do?" Her head tilts a bit, brow arching as she gives in a once over. "I mean.. that's a lot of sneakiness for a bunch of squatters. A bit of a risk to your job really." She turns enough to rest a hip on the table, arms crossing as she watching him across the table.

"He said…" Bones rolls his eyes up towards the ornate ceiling as he recalls the words that Mack used. "..that the system is more broken than I know and you and this group are the ones trying to balance the scales. Said there are a lot of people being taken against their will and kidnapped. People who are evolved. People of any type being mistreated by anyone does not exactly sit right with me." He says resolutely and moves back over to the coffee maker as it gives that last hollow sound and taps it to make sure that every last drop gets in the pot. Picking up a coffee cup, he pours and then walks over to hand it to her, tossing a cream and a sugar packet on to the table next to her. "so I thought I would give you guys the benefit of the doubt until someone showed up who is a little higher on the food chain than Mack and can lay it down a little thicker for me." Fair reasoning to his mind. He moves back, pouring his own cup and putting /way/ too much sugar in to it in the process.

"Interesting…" Claire murmurs thoughtfully.

"He's right…" She states firmly. "There is a lot below the surface that you don't see." She stretches enough to take the mug without him having to get too close. Setting it on the table she starts to fix it how she likes. "I just came back from stopping the bad guys.."Glancing up, she gives him a smirk, knowing how that sounds. "I can't really tell you much about it… but…" The smile slides away. "We lost one of ours in it.. he…. sacrificed himself to save the world." there is no hiding the sadness in her tone, at the loss of a friend.

"The scales we balance.. their the ones that influence the future.. this that we just did… it kept New York from being under water." Picking up the coffee she carefully uses it to motion around her. "All of this.. would have been a water world."

Frankly, he stares at her, mid-sip of his coffee and in the process completely forgets that he is scalding his mouth for a moment. He gives a cough and manages to swallow. Closing his mouth, his jaw working as he chews on the inside of his cheek. He frowns at her for a moment, as if he is deciding whether or not she is telling the truth. After all, she was the one who said she can't tell him a whole hell of a lot. "Uh, er… wow. I suppose I should say thanks and probably owe you a little more than a cup of Joe." he steps back to lean against the wall. "See… it's a thing like this that makes be give pause and allow people the benefit of the doubt. Glad I didn't evict you." he says, giving a small smile.

"Yeah well, I don't expect everyone to understand." Claire says with a soft sigh, sipping at her own coffee. There is a bit of a frown and she glances at the mug, obviously new to this type of coffee. " We are all about the end game." She continues, looking back that a dark skinned man, "It's all about doing things now to make the future safer." Both hands wrap around the mug. "Sadly, no one will really know what we did. Thought the government rounded up some of us and a bunch of others, it was a hushed mission. Maybe one day I can fill you in on the details… but you understand my caution."

Her eyes unfocus some as Claire turns thoughtful, it's a haunted look, but she gives a shake of her head. "Well, either way.. what we do.. is important… though we keep it on the down low… though some things that became clear in the mission, makes me think we'll have to prepare for whatever the government is planning… just what I've seen.. it'll get scary before it gets better." Blinking she focuses on Bones again, "Sorry, I shouldn't be talking like that. It's been a long two months." She explains again.

"Don't worry. I understand the need for secrets. When I signed on to be a Sandhog I had to sign a piece of paper that says I am not allowed to tell anyone anything about the various abandoned and forgotten subway stations or discarded underground buildings I run across in the line of duty." Bones shrugs and then sips his coffee. He crosses his arms over his chest as he allows her to continue.

"Mack might have not been able to put what you do as well as you just did, but so far, this is the kind of thing I would be interested in being involved in, if all that you are saying is true." he pauses and takes in a bit of a breath and sighs it out. "I am not registered." he announces without clarifying that much further. "Like I told Peyton, the cute girl who sat next to me in history class was absent that day in high school when we were going over the registration of Jews and other people who were considered 'threats'. I may or may not be a threat or myself and others, but not going to allow someone to pin a star on my chest if I can help it."

"I am… but only cause I was picked up once on a mission. And forcefully registered." Claire's nose wrinkles a bit at the memory of being in a windowed room. "But.. for me at least, it's not a big deal, others out there might be considered so and don't deserve it." A curious look goes his way. "If your interested in helping, well… I imagine we can use it. I know… Richard…" Her voice catches a bit at the name, forcing her to clear her throat and sip her coffee to settle it. ".. was always looking for people for the cause. I'd have to talk to Liz.. She'll want to meet you, but there are thing we have to start considering such as getting prepared to protect ourselves." There is a seriousness to her voice. "If she meets you and think we can let you in on some of this… well, then we'll have a long talk."

Something is off about this, but Bones does not recall exactly what for a moment. Then it hits him. He was supposed to talk to the leader, Cardinal. Nothing was every mentioned about a 'Liz'. But as Claire chokes up, it dawns on him who she must have meant when she said they lost one of theirs. His eyes widen a bit but then he stills and licks his lips, pushing off from the wall and walks towards her, having thought to show some form of comfort in her moment of grief but instead he stops awkwardly a few feet from he and nods. "I'm incredibly sorry for your loss." he says, his tone seeming even more genuine than the stereotypical and overused words of sympathy he speaks, realizing he probably does not trust him as far as she can throw him and he really does not know her that well.

Bones steps back around the table and sets his coffee down, picking up his MRE to finish it off. "I look forward to meeting Liz? then and hopefully all checks out. In the meantime, I'll keep up the bargain I made with Mack and make sure, from my end, that no one catches wind of you guys. Besides, from what you say, I owe Cardinal and the rest of you my life, I guess. That's no small thing by me."

"He's the one to thank." Claire says softly, her body stiffening as she starts to move closer. What has this young woman be through? "He was my friend, but him and Liz were close. So tread lightly with her when and if you meet her. He may have pulled together this little band of end gamers, but we plan to carry on. I warn you though.. with this group, you have to have an open mind." This little blonde girl speak with an authority she didn't really have two months ago.

"A lot of what we do is based on a combination of intel and the visions of precogs." Claire goes silent for a moment to let that little bit sink. "What we just did.. was sung about, painted and talked about by Precogs. So we take what they say seriously."

"Five hundred years ago, you and I would have insisted that the world was flat. Three hundred years ago, we would have known for certain that blood was a solid liquid, not made up of tiny little floating cells. One hundred years ago the idea of man being lifted by hot air would have been preposterous. Week ago I would have said that a making a pizza crust filled with cheese is just silly and wrong." That girl in Bones' history class must have been absent more than just a day or so. "Damn am I glad what we as humans think to be impossible or wrong at the time can be accomplished by an enlightened few."

"Open minded then. Good." Claire states with a bit more genuine of a smile. " Always a plus." She notes, seeming to relax a touch. The mug is set on the table. "So that you are aware… I have no idea really who Mack or Peyton are.. they are only names to me, but they are some of the end gamers." Stepping away form the table, she slowly paces down the length. "When I was on this mission. I was hurt to the point that I lost five months worth of memories. I lost almost every memory of here. The few I had were of Cardinal. So if I seem confused on things, you'll know why." A lop-sided smile is given to him. "I'm relearning everything about all this." Her blue eyes move to look around her. "Sucks realy."

"If you want to call choosing a new crust enlightened, sure, but don't go calling me the Dalai Lama. I still am still a little skeptical now and again. For instance, Elvis is not dead. Elvis lives on in our hearts, in his music, and in a trailer park outside Milwaukee." Bones grins a little widely at this, seeming to be trying to cheer her up a little. He then nods his understanding that she is trying to re-acclimate herself. "You know, at first I might think forgetting things was scary and it would feel quite unsettling. I'd hope then that I would see it as… a clean slate. A bit of a do-over even if only to me. I know my conscience would be clearer if didn't know I had taken that lady's cookie off the cooling rack while I was inspecting her house last month."

"For me it kind of sucks." Claire states blandly, as the attempt of humor falls flat, fingers trail along the table as she steps slowly. "I've been told I'm a different person now. I had a boyfriend, who I can not remember… at all. In fact, I know I've changed, cause I can not remember what drew me to him.. but now I think he's almost like this young high schooler stuck in his comic book world." There is a soft sigh and she rubs at her forehead as she tension shows. "Dunno why the old me thought he was a good match. I tried to talk to him, several times.. but it was.. to surreal.. to odd.. kinda scary" She pauses, hand dropping so she can look at him, "Sorry.. not sure why I'm telling you this."

"You're telling me because I asked without so many words and you need someone to talk to who will not automatically say, 'I know, I was there!'. You need someone on the outside who can't say they experienced what you have or even half of what you have been through this last while. And I am sorry if I might have trivialized what you were feeling." Bones reasons, slowly taking his chair and turning it around so that he can seat himself on it backwards, resting his arms on the seatback. "I am happy to listen if you have a need. Also, if you ever need to throw a punch at someone, I'm a good one to have a fist sailing my way. I teach a martial arts class at my mother and father's dojo."

"Nah.. if I need to beat up on something.. I can always toss myself in front of a train." Claire sounds a touch amused, he wouldn't understand it.. but that time will come. "Thanks though… what I need to talk about, I can't with you yet.." She studies him with a small smile and a hand comes up to point at the door. "I'm gonna go try and get some sleep now… Or.. try too. If.. you see a blonde woman before I see her… or if I'm not there. Don't startle her, that is Liz. I can't explain why.. that's up to her really."

Pausing, Claire turns on the heel of one foot, to look back at the man. "Nice to meet you Bones, I'm sure we'll be talking again later."

"You do that." He says in response to her intent to get some shut-eye. "I'll try to keep the music down." Bones says as he gets up from his chair, intending to walk her to the door and shut it behind her, grinning at her warning and request concerning Liz. "And I will not startle her. From what I've heard, people around here should be some of the last people to startle." He reaches for the open door after she is out, gripping the handle. "Nice to meet you as well, Claire. I'll see you soon. And should you need something, just scream /real/ loud. I'm sure I can pick it out over the sound of this place groaning and settling. Good night."

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