Too Close to Midnight


eileen_icon.gif ethan_icon.gif raith_icon.gif

Scene Title Too Close to Midnight
Synopsis Raith finally gets his meeting with Ethan.
Date July 4, 2009

Central Park — Belvedere Castle

Constructed from the same stone as the Vista Point which supports it, Belvedere Castle seems to rise out of the earth itself. The miniature Gothic castle is easily visible from a distance, courtesy of both its height and the American flag fluttering from the turret's pinnacle. Its windows overlook views of Turtle Pond, the Delacorte Theater, and the Great Lawn. The interior, however, is anything but Gothic; the halls on both floors are filled with telescopes, microscopes, paper-mache birds, skeletons, and feathers, all laid out as parts of an interactive exhibit. In the Henry Luce Nature Observatory, visitors can borrow binoculars, notepads, maps, and guidebooks with which to study the wildlife of the park.

The dark of the night brings back a lot of memories for Jensen Raith. His first meeting with Ethan Holden, which occurred around 2 in the afternoon some time ago in the past, is not one of them. What it does remind him of, however, is the multitude of times he spent hiding in the shadow, plotting his next move. And here he is again, doing the same thing, if under very different circumstances. The more things change, as they say.

Although he's not expecting trouble, or much trouble at least, he's still quite alert, keeping low, lurking in shadows, and glancing out the pavilion windows only briefly. Ethan may be something of a wild card, but Raith knows that Eileen, at the very least, is reliable. She'll show up; the question is whether or not Holden will be with her. Checking his watch again, he monitors the time, taking guesstimates on how long they can stay out before someone comes by or gets suspicious. Don't disappoint, Ethan.

"Heard you've been lookin' for me. Along with a bunch of other men. I know I've been a bit more stringy and cut than I usually am, but I didn't think it would get me this much attention. I 'ave to say, I'm flattered." Comes the cockney accent as Ethan's steps tap quietly against the stone. "Anyways, ol friend. 'Ands up." Ethan commands, though it's still in a chummy sort of way.

The pistol he holds up is aimed carefully at the other man in the darkness as the Brit approaches slowly. One hand tucked into his coat, the other holding his weapon firmly.

Not far behind Ethan is the slim silhouette of Eileen Ruskin. Her black hair and the dark material of her coat blend in seamlessly with the shadows that wrap around the pavilion, lending her the vague likeness of a very trim, very svelte jungle cat with pale eyes that reflect what little light is able to filter through the heavy cloud cover. Chances are she probably doesn't approve of Ethan training a pistol on someone she considers an ally, but other than keep watch while the two men conduct their conversation, there's not a lot she can do about it except pin a stern look to his back.

"Hands up?" Calmly looking back over his shoulder, Raith doesn't make much progress in positively identifying the source of the voice due to the darkness, but the voice itself is identity enough. "What about 'how are you?' 'Nice to see you again?' I'm hurt, Ethan. I knew you weren't great with how you treat your friends-" Despite the arrogance in his own voice, Raith raises his hands in non-aggression as he turns to face Ethan fully, allowing his MP5 to hang freely from its sling- "But I never imagined this is how you'd treat me, your best friend."

"Been shot at by too many best friends, mate." Ethan informs casually as he steps forward. The man eyes the weapon hanging at his side. "I'll take that for now." The Wolf commands, reaching out and flicking the MP5 with one finger. "Listen, no more little quips or jokes about 'ow I behave, got it? I'm the funny one around 'ere, and if you don't like it, you can hop back on your boat, or jetski, or whotever the fuck you came 'ere on. Now. Whot the fuck do you want?"

"Well, I'd like very much not to have a gun shoved in my face, but we can't always get what we want," Raith replies, still keeping his hands visible. He knows that Ethan is missing just enough screws to open fire for almost any slight, real or not. "But what I really want is to make the world a better place, and Pinehearst is a fine place to start. You know about them, right Ethan? In a few days, they'll be unleashing the world's most advanced development in biological warfare, right here in the city. Did you know that?"

"Right. Sorry bout that." Ethan moves the gun from being directly in Raith's face to pointing at the side of his head. "See? We can all get along." With that Ethan takes his free hand and removes Raith's gun from his side and lifts it over his shoulder. "Take it, princess." Ethan commands. "Since we know each other, I won't search you further. But no sudden moves buddy boy, or I'll go Picasso on your face." The man says sternly, taking a step back. Tilting his head to the side at all this Pinehearst talk, Ethan's lips thin. "Why should I give a fuck?"

The first thing Eileen does is flick the safety on under the pressure of her thumb. She lowers the weapon, muzzle pointed downwards, and steps around Ethan to adopt a more neutral position from which she can mediate. "Pinehearst has Sylar," she states simply, "and the two of us alone won't have much luck if we try to turn him loose by ourselves. We need him."

They have a serum and Eyebrows? Oh yes, Raith is liking this situation better and better. "Look," he begins, "You two want to get your buddy out, that's fine with me. I'm more concerned with the fact that in less than two days, two days, Pinehearst is going to roll out a chemical that gives abilities to whoever shoots up with it, and they'll be well on their way to building a private army. Any of this sounding familiar, Ethan? Remember that scam we all bought into a few years back where we nearly killed six billion people?

"Now, I know better than to appeal to your humanity, so I'll elaborate a little more. Department of Defense is going to be at the demonstration on Monday, and that means a lot more than just the military is going to get this. Government will be all over it, and last I checked, they were still looking for you. Don't you think it would be a lot easier to keep them from finding you if they don't have this chemical?"

"You criticizin' my 'umanity?" Holden asks, lowering his own gun, he goes to tuck it into his holster at his side. A glance over at Eileen. Sylar. Sylar did indirectly help him out of that cage fight mess, as well as take care of Eileen. A light hum passes through his lips as he eyes Raith. "You 'ave a plan?"

"I do," Raith replies, slowly lowering his hands now that Ethan seems to be more at ease, "And if I had another week to work on it, it'd be a really, really good one. That's the other reason for calling you here, because you have experience with making plans, and I need help with this one, because right now, my plan consists of getting a small group of heavily armed men and kicking the doors in, and that's a terrible plan. But, if I were to tell you that I know who provides Pinehearst's cleaning services, who knows, maybe you'll have a flash of brilliance I'm still hoping for. Not what you wanted to hear, exactly, but I found all of this out last night. Doesn't look like much after only fifteen hours of thinking."

"So basically you're a retard and you want me to make a plan." Ethan says crisply, eyeing the man skeptically. "Do you 'ave much information about Pine'earst staff, blueprints, dossiers, anything? Or are you 'ere to tell me all you 'ave is the Merry Maids phone number." Ethan snaps glancing back at Eileen.

Retard? "Yeah, I have plenty of that. All of everything we could possibly need, which I spent all day yesterday tracking down." There is absolutely no doubt that Raith is irritated, even angry. This very real slight is not one he will just let go. "And I at least have something resembling a plan, which is more than you've done the past month, you second-rate, dimestore putz."

"Princess, shoot 'im in the kneecaps." Not a real command. He would never expect, or guess she would actually do that. Smirking, he holds his hand out. "You 'ave papers, mate? Or you just wanna stand out 'ere and flirt with me all night?" The Wolf asks, arching a brow at the other man. If he's offended or thouroughly invested in any of the words tossed back and forth, he doesn't seem to show it. "When were you thinkin' about 'ittin this place, bruv? And is your bench deeper than us, or is this going to be a two man operation?"

If Ethan and Raith listen very carefully, they may detect the sound of aggravation escaping Eileen's nostrils in the form of a thin feline hiss. This would be easier, she imagines, if she had Sylar's smirking presence at her back — for one thing, it might dissuade them pissing all over everything like a pair of zoo animals whose cages have been placed too close together. For another, they wouldn't even be having this conversation. "That's enough out of both of you," she snarls. "I don't give a shit whose dick is bigger, so put your yardsticks away and play nice."

Raith has words he'd like to give to Eileen. Instead, he gives her a stern, acidic glare: they have a deal. Moving his focus back to Ethan, he gives his reply to the latter portions, ignoring what came out of the Brit's mouth earlier. "Not in the habit of carrying around information I acquired illegally, so if you want to take a look at that… well, I left copies in a briefcase I dumped in a trash can a ways back. And right now, it's just us, although I've got the sneaking suspicion that Eily can get us a few more guns." Another look is given to Eileen, although Raith doesn't wait for her to reply.

"Pinehearst has a contract with Stillwater Security Consultations for, well, security. They're a private military, so they'll have some pretty serious hardware. Hope you're not having second thoughts, Der Wolf."

Ethan smirks a sidelong glance over at Eileen, before giving a nod. "She's very right. This isn't the time or place for that conversation." Wolf agrees fully. "But if we were.." Ethan makes a grandiose gesture with his hands as if to explain who the winner would be in that competition. "But right. Let's not talk about that right now, Tiny."

With a grin he glances back at Raith to hear him rattle off where he put his illegal documents, and who could get them more guns and whatnot. When he informs him that there is some serious hardware, however, "Good, maybe one of these boys could kill me." He says lightly, motioning for Raith to turn around. "Come on then. Let's go get these trashcan documents."

Eileen spins the weapon around, holds her thumb down on the magazine release and ejects the ammunition. Next, she pulls the bolt back and locks it open in a rehearsed series of halting motions. You don't run with the Vanguard for over four years without learning a thing or two about guns and their maintenance. Wordlessly, she offers Raith the MP5, holding it by the barrel in the secure vice that is her left hand — the one without the plastic brace affixed to it.

"Careful what you wish for, Holden," Raith cautions, accepting his weapon from Eileen, and then holding out his free hand to remind her that she still has to give back the magazine, "The rest of us might regret it. Either of you know anything about hacking computers?"

A smirk twinkles on Ethan's lips at Eileen's rehearsed mechanical actions. And then that smirk turns into more of a twisted grin as he gazes at Raith. Taking a step forward he goes to herd Eileen along with him, one hand lightly on her shoulder, his other hand going to do the same on Raith's shoulder. "Sure I do. You press control, alt, and delete."

Eileen apparently has no intention of returning Raith's magazine to him. Instead, she falls into step beside Ethan — not so close that she's leaning against him, but close enough that their bodies still touch. If there's one thing she missed while in possession of Kuhr's ability, it's simple human contact. "I know a technopath who might be able to lend you a hand," she offers, "but convincing her that your personal crusade against Pinehearst is worth her time might be difficult."

No magazine? Well, fine then! "Nothing personal about it, Eily," Raith replies, falling into step behind them. He has to go back that way to get out of the park anyway, so why not? He also takes the time to fish a spare magazine from under his coat and slide it into his weapon. "We're talking about the fate of the free world. You're too young, but Der Wolf remembers the war, how close we came to going out even without Volken's help. This serum is going to be the new H-bomb, and we're already too close to midnight for my comfort…"

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