Welcome to Phase Three


kazimir_icon.gif odessa_icon.gif

Scene Title Welcome to Phase Three
Synopsis Destiny is discussed by two impossible beings.
Date December 5, 2008

Eagle Electric

Most notable business collapse in Queens was that of Eagle Electric, a major manufacturer based out of Long Island City for decades, comprised of acres of warehouses and manufacturing plants designed to produce electronic components to suit all sorts of needs. The western warehouse of the Eagle Electric lot is an enormous and foreboding red-painted building made entirely from sheets of ridged steel. Amidst the grass growing up through the cracks in the pavement and the burned out cars in the parking lot, it seems just as uninhabited as the rest of the area. A large and ruined sign at the top of the office and manufacturing building prominently reads, "Eagle Electric—Perfection Is Not An Accident."

Everyone in the Vanguard has been a little on edge lately. Some more so than others.

But despite all of this agitation, Eagle Electric has been more quiet than usual. Days have gone by where hardly anyone has taken up space in the warehouse, and Kazimir's lack of presence has been rather obvious, mostly from the dust beginning to settle on his chair. However it's often said that there is a calm before every storm, and in the realm of analogies, that time while he was away was most undoubtedly the calm.

But despite all of this agitation, Eagle Electric has been more quiet than usual. Days have gone by where hardly anyone has taken up space in the warehouse, and Kazimir's lack of presence has been rather obvious, mostly from the dust beginning to settle on his chair. However it's often said that there is a calm before every storm, and in the realm of analogies, that time while he was away was most undoubtedly the calm.

The teamsters unloading the trucks carry large plastic cases off of loading ramps down onto the warehouse floor, stacking them up just inside of the facility, not making any effort to move them deeper inside or organize them with the remainder of the abandoned cargo. Apparently it won't be stationary for long.

It is this convoy of vehicles that heralds Kazimir's return, pacing back and forth like an expectant father within the warehouse, gloved hands folded behind his back and blue eyes focused intently on each piece of cargo as it is brought off of the trucks. The roar of the idling engines, the clattering noise of moving cargo, and the click-clack of Kazimir's shoes on the concrete floor all builds up the rising crescendo of what is coming. There's just one very important person missing from the equation.

There is no herald to Odessa's arrival. One moment she's not there, the next, she's draped across the throne of sorts. Her head is craned to see around the back of the chair and her legs dangle over the other arm of it. "What's going on, Mister Volken?" Oh so casually, she swings her feet back and forth through the air, peering curiously at the goings-on through the angled mirrors.

The voice, the one person speaking amidst all of the business, and it's her. Kazimir's blue eyes drift to the side, peering into one of the mirrors only to see Odessa Knutson looking back at him, on his chair. His eyes close, lips pressing together as a slow breath is drawn into his nose. It's times like these that he questions giving Sylar the opportunity to keep Odessa aboard, but on the same token he was given very specific, and very important information about a gift just such as her.

"Progress is happening, my darling nightingale." It seems after all this time he's come up with a name for her. If perhaps a bit more flowery than he is predisposed to. "The second phase is nearly finished, and soon all of this will be necessary." He motions towards the plastic crates, turning to start walking down one of the long and narrow halls between the older and cloth-shrouded stacks.

"It's fitting you're here for this…" Too fitting, too coincidental, she makes him more nervous than he wants to admit. "…because what you're seeing here directly involves you. Perhaps you could call it destiny, or maybe simply coincidence." One gloved hand waves flippantly in the air as if indirectly motioning to his point. "Are you curious?"

Odessa fights the urge to ask him what sort of question that is and instead settles for tipping her head at her new nickname before offering silent approval in the form of a considerate nod of her head. "Yes, of course. Tell me about my destiny." She initially believed fate had pushed her to Sylar, and now she's beginning to wonder if he was merely a means to an end. The Vanguard.

"Are you familiar with the term Sibyl?" It's Kazimir's rhetoric at it's finest, he's fairly confident the young woman is versed in a manner of broad vocabulary, but he asks the question as a means of conversational lubrication. "Oracular seeress in antiquated times…" Kazimir slowly approaches the dais much in the same way he did when it was Sylar perched there with something he wanted. It's strange how these situations seem to present themselves to him; patterns and cycles.

"A sibyl has much to do with your role." He turns, regarding Odessa with a side-long stare, then shifts his focus as he looks behind him towards the stack of plastic crates being unloaded from the trucks. "That, there, Odessa… is the promise I made you on the day Sylar saved your life." He looks back to the blonde in his chair, head tilting to one side. "Those crates contain the supplies for a fully functional biochemical laboratory. Not state of the art equipment, but good and trustworthy machines."

Folding his hands behind his back, Kazimir regards Odessa more closely. "The largest four crates are the main components of a cyclotron, I believe you know what that is." More rhetoric, "You will be using it for a process of positron emission tomography, to assist you in the testing and analysis of…" Kazimir halts in mid sentence with a meandering roll of his shoulder. "…the Shanti Virus." Play the gambit, see her reaction, it's now or never to see if Tamara held up to her end of the bargain.

For a moment, Odessa doesn't follow the talk of seers, but takes a more vested interest in the equipment he's providing to her. She twists in her seat, legs coming up and over the arm of the chair to settle on the floor in a flounce of skirt and ruffles. She leans forward, eyes wide now that he has her rapt attention.

And then, she simply isn't there anymore.

"Shanti." Her voice rings out deeper in the warehouse, the woman herself visible when one peers into the right mirror. "What do you know about Shanti?"

"Enough." Enough to coerce the rest out of whoever knows more, at the very least. "The Shanti Virus is the beginning of Phase Three, my nightengale." Kazimir finally takes that bold step up onto the dais, his hard-soled dress shoes thumping soundly against the cloth-covered wood, the echo somewhat muffled. "Your phase," there's a ghost of a smile that comes with those words. "As Amato led the first phase, Ethan the second, you will lead the third phase of our Work." Kazimir motions towards Odessa with one gloved hand. "I will need your assistance in procuring the Virus, and then testing it." He has to choose his words carefully, play as though he knows more than what he does, that he knows anything about the Virus at all. If Odessa is the key, and Sylar's painting is the end product, he has to play this game with his cards as close to his chest as possible.

"Are you ready to finally be a part of what we do, Odessa? To be the playwright on this stage?" His Shakesperean overtones have perhaps an even more profound meaning for Odessa, "Once the damsel in distress, now the woman writing the script. Will you play your part in the third act? Or has all this been for nothing?"

"Shanti," Odessa repeats quietly. "When I was just a girl, there was this door with a symbol that held no meaning to me until much later in my life." She pauses. Suddenly, she's standing in front of Kazimir. Her eyes, still wide, are filled with a mixture of curiosity and fear. "I was told a little girl named Shanti lived behind that door, and that she was very sick. I tried to sneak in to see her once. But I didn't have my abilities then." At her sides, Odessa's fingers flex nervously. "It wasn't until I started practicing medicine for the Company that I realised Shanti was never a girl at all." Her face now is grim and serious. "Shanti will kill us all. Shanti could kill everyone." Her voice lowers in pitch, heavy with the weight she wants her words to carry to him.

The very prospect of the information Kazimir rapidly receives almost overwhelms him. First the visible glimpse into Odessa's power, outwardly similar to Elias', but is it so simple? But the further mystery of the Shanti Virus, and it's almost mythic representation as a girl who is harbinger of death seems so fitting. Not only had Tamara fulfilled her role to Kazimir, she had done so with the bombastic climax of an operatic play. This would be Kazimir's denouement, this is what Adam wants, what he wants.

"Could kill everyone." The notion is somewhat tantalizing, he has considered an epidemic to wipe out the Evolved, but all life itself, it seems almost unthinkable. But yet, where is the hesitation, where is his doubt? Why does this feel right? "But it is your responsibility to ensure that the Virus does not. Your skill, your gift and your role in this, will be to refine and manipulate the Virus into what is needed."

Kazimir moves to step past Odessa, slowly, each footfall a measured and meteronomic thump until he has switched places with her from where the conversation began. The chair creaks as Kazimir settles down to sit on the chair, leaning back with one hand on either arm, fingers curled into the cloth for a moment. "But," his mind goes over the collected facts again. A door. A place. "First we'll need to get the virus."

Sick realisation has come over Odessa now. "It could kill me before I have a chance to perfect it." She shakes her head, fear settling in now in full force. "You can't ask me to do this. You can't ask me to potentially murder the whole of creation if I'm wrong."

Kazimir tilts his head to the side, "It could kill you, it could kill all of us." It is right, this is what needs to happen, to throw the coin high into the air and see which side it lands on. "But only if you make a mistake, Odessa, and you will not be alone in this endeavor." Kazimir narrows his eyes, one hand coming up to rub his chin, "You and Gabriel can work together on this project. He may not have the medical background you do, but his capability for learning and understanding is beyond any I have ever seen." Intuitive aptitude and pamnesia, it does make for a remarkable combination. "He can be your assistant. Together, I have the absolute faith that one of you would catch the other's mistakes…"

One gray brow raises, "Your tasks are simple," it is as if her saying no simply isn't an answer. "We acquire a sample of the virus, and then begin immediate testing. The vehicles I have brought here contain concealed refrigeration units, these will be used to store test subjects after the infection has been sampled on them. Gabriel's unique radioactive touch can potentially expunge any dangerous subjects quite wholly."

"What gives us the right to do this?" Odessa asks in all seriousness. "Why should we get to decide who lives or dies? I need to know." She gnaws on her lower lip as she waits for a response. She rubs her hands together in front of her, warming her skin.

"Because if it isn't us, someone else will." Kazimir raises both of his brows as he offers that explanation, "One day, some day, someone will do just as we have. Be it I, or Adam, or someone else who follows in our footsteps. It isn't a matter of having the right, it is the matter of inevitability." Kazimir leans forward in his chair, "Besides, this is where your choices have led you, Odessa. To turn back now, would make all of the sacrifice you have gone through for nothing. Trust in our judgment, and our vision of the future… or trust that a future generation will not do worse." He leans back slowly after speaking his peace, "That, is why."

It's a long, long moment of silence that follows the explanation, during which Odessa's eyes never look away from Kazimir's. She nods her acquiescence finally. "Fine. But Sylar goes with me to retrieve the virus."

"We'll all go." Kazimir nods his head slowly, motioning towards Odessa with one hand, "This is one assignment that I feel may require my delicate touch, and a certain level of security." He smiles again, very softly, "I would have no other place for Gabriel but there and then," He nods, placatingly, "And by your side, Nightingale." Leaning back into his chair, Kazimir exhales a slow breath and steeples his gloved fingers in front of his face, peering over the backs of his hands.

"Welcome to Phase Three, Odessa."

Odessa's fingers tremble as she turns her back to the leader of the Vanguard to step down from the dais, heels clicking as she goes. The echoing sounds of her feet touching the warehouse floor never ring out, however.

The Nightingale simply vanishes from sight.

December 5th: A SCOUT in the Making

Previously in this storyline…

Next in this storyline…
Code 21.25

December 5th: A Night at the Orchid
Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License