The Dead Savant

Discussion in 'Campfire Stories' started by Zemelci, Aug 25, 2015.

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  1. Autumneverlast

    Autumneverlast Well-Known Member

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    Harper frowned at Giles as he insisted that it was safe. Nowhere was truly, ever safe, especially somewhere where they knew you had spent a lot of time in, had attachments in. But before she could disabuse him of that notion, he mentioned this... Toby again. And suddenly things made more sense. Precogs were... Always an interesting bunch. Sometimes varied, sometimes useless, but in this case apparently quite helpful. Apparently Toby's... feelings had yet to leave them astray. Not the same as saying that he's infallible, but definitely someone useful to have around. He had apparently only been living with Rach (whoever she was) for a week, the rest of the time was... somewhere else, rougher than a friend's house. Streets then, if she had a good guess. Wasn't hard for someone working illegal or irregular work to end up there and Giles had made no mention of a job at all. So either something he didn't want to remember or something illegal. Either way, almost certainly streets. Which was... Irritating to say the least. Streets suck. But apparently Rach convinced him to move, he met Toby, and everything was sunshine and rainbows and safety, so long as they got out of there yesterday. Harper didn't want to tear him a new one, she really didn't, she felt so nice and pampered, but... "wait for it all to blow over"?

    "Never. Ever. Assume it will blow over," she said, voice quiet. "I've heard that too many times, from musicians, refugees, women with black eyes... and it never came true. Nothing ever just blows over. So whatever plan we decide on, we plan for a long haul stormy weather. We need to think long term. We make backup plans. And backups for those backup plans. I don't like staying here, but we have to think about that just as much as hiding out in Colorado and..." Harper winced. This was going to suck. "This is probably the safest place for us long term." The words didn't come out through gritted teeth, but there was more than a little bit of growl in there. Okay, deep breath, band-aid was off. "Next best plan is probably to stay with Rach, but that isn't long term. Hiding out in someone's home can only last for so long, even if that person is prepared. So unless you plan for us to get a snug, quiet little place and find some way to stay fed, staying with Rach is a short term solution at best." And a trap at worst. Not that she was going to tell him that.
     
  2. Lord Regal

    Lord Regal The West Team Sheriff

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    The flat refusal of his suggestion caught Giles flat-footed. Sure, survival instinct was clashing a little with his personal desires, but even so, it'd worked for a week already. But Harper was under the impression it wouldn't blow over quick, or rather, she didn't want to make the assumption. And as much as he didn't want to admit it, he had to agree that Rachel's place probably wouldn't hold up under a ton of scrutiny. He didn't doubt his friends had been checked over once already, but a major scare could have the BYOB make another round. The shapeshifter's personal plan though..."H-Harper. Here? Are you sure?" The former aristocrat mostly succeeded in keeping the incredulity out of his voice. "Here is just as bad as where the other base was...same people running the show, or at least I'd assume so from how Ashley's talking. The same people who let us walk into that death trap. Th-the same people who..." he needed to calm down, he knew it, he was straying too close to memories he didn't want to unpack. Towards that end, he tried taking a couple deep breaths, but that had never been a great solution for him. No, he calmed down by being active, and there was nothing to be active with in here. Well, except for the woman across from him, but in her current state, he couldn't even really think about that. "Ugh. You. I know you have a lot more experience with this than I do. Hell, I had no real business being brought on the original assignment. They brought me on to make sure he didn't complete his collection. This. I'm not used to this. I want to run, hide, get out of the way of anything that could happen, and all I can think of if we stay is either we get dragged into another suicide mission or they figure out where this friggen base is because of this extra special attack they're planning.

    "But. But." Giles sighed, a lot of the fight leaving him. "I trust you. If you think we'd be safer here than at Rachel's, I'll trust you. My instincts tell me to run, but...it's a long way back from here, and if anyone recognizes me, that's it." He moved over to a chair and slumped into it. "Had a few scares already. Wore as thick of a beard as I could stand and still I think people recognized me sometimes, from my pictures. Kinda friggen hard to hide when your face is plastered everywhere as one of the friggen "instigators", and the only one supposedly not captured...or dead. They friggen disowned me, but the world doesn't care. Been...really, really scared, these last few months." He sighed. "I'll stay. Can't claim I'll sleep well, but what's new about that, really?" There wasn't anything for it, he wasn't going to leave Harper. Not today, not anytime soon. He could tell when a fight was hopeless, and this was one he could only win by conceding. Kinda like this whole war. Stay out of it, stay out of sight, and don't let anything you do draw the attention of the YMCA or him. If staying here is what Harper thought would give them the best chance of doing that, he wasn't going to argue it. He just hoped she was right.
     
  3. braetwalda

    braetwalda Well-Known Member

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    Dante would hear Tonya out as she outlined Ashley's plan, though that was only because she had asked him to as anyone else trying that stunt would have found themselves being over ridden so that Dante could voice his displeasure. As she came to the end of her explanation Dante would give a weary sigh as he pinched the bridge of his nose "so...let me get this straight, you want to go into the headquarters of the DSRP along with a known traitor and a woman who can barely stand unaided, using a plan and intel given to you by someone who is responsible for more failed missions than Wiley Coyote...Tonya I love you but that's that the stupidest plan I've ever heard!" he said, unable to find a single element of "the plan", if it could even be called that, that he liked with the only way it could be made worse was if they were to phone the DSRP in advanced to let them know they were coming "Look Tonya, I know you feel responsible for all this and you want to even things out, but I'm not going to let you risk your life on a moronic plan like that!" he continued hoping that she would see reason and work with him, if only to find a better plan than the one they currently had, though he would sooner she didn't go at all.
     
  4. Autumneverlast

    Autumneverlast Well-Known Member

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    Harper winced as Giles slumped away his own arguments against staying. Sure, she wanted to stay safe, but she hadn't meant to shut him down. And he was apparently Public Enemy Number one out there. Well then. "I didn't mean that we needed to stay here," she said as gently as she could. "Unfortunately, this is a good place to stay, out of public and away from whatever crap is happening out there." She had to force herself not to grind her teeth at that one, if they really did have to stay, this was really going to suck. No matter how true it was. "That doesn't mean we have no options at all, and you would be surprised by some of the things I can pull off." She eyed Giles carefully. He was certainly attractive, and pretty enough that he could probably pass... "If we really need to," she said carefully. "We could probably pass you off as a woman. Get a wig, some clothes that fit you, a pair of sunglasses, and some makeup, nobody would recognize you." Most guys didn't like the suggestion that they were effeminate in any way, something about an insult to their masculinity. But desperate times. It wasn't like she found more androgynous men attractive. Definitely not cross dressers either, that would mean she was some sort of weirdo... heh. Heh. Who was she kidding, that idea was kind of hot. Down, girl. Life or death, pain of discovery. Distraction. Harper grinned brightly. "Just an idea. I'm hungry, we should get food." And she definitely didn't want to jump him again, wasn't supposed to do that right now, Giles' sister's form and all that.
     
  5. Lord Regal

    Lord Regal The West Team Sheriff

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    The conversation went from reasonably understandable to a little weird as Harper moved to Giles potentially being able to pass as a girl, though..."Wig?" the smile was in his voice, if not his face. "I'm not limited by gender on my hair, you know." Indeed, his hair was lengthening and changing color until he was a platinum blonde with straight hair down to his waist. "Or alternatively, something like this works too," he added, going brown, shoulder length, and curly to the point it should've needed a salon over the course of a few seconds. "Makeup I've used in costumes before, once it's on me I'm 'wearing' it which lets me move it as I want." The former aristocrat's hair returned to his favored style as he shrugged. "Clothes and the noticeable lack of curves I'm a little more at a loss for, but I can wear things well enough regardless. Though, I'm sorry, I'm getting ahead of myself a little. How exactly did we get from staying here to me pretending to be a woman?" His expression darkened again as she suggested they go find food. "We should, I agree. Just...I know it's unreasonable amounts of paranoia, but I don't like the idea of strolling around the base. The lower profile we keep, the less we annoy the higher ups. And annoying the higher ups is how we get pressured into going on something to earn our keep." Bitterness tinged his voice as he explained his rationale, he hated being that paranoid, but past experience had more or less necessitated it. "I get we won't be getting meals shipped to us, that's just as unreasonable, but...I dunno, just uneasy about the whole thing. Why I suggested getting the hell out while we can." This wasn't easy. At all. But he'd agreed to it, so might as well play the part. He rose with a sigh, nodding. "Sure, let's go find out where they actually serve food."
     
  6. Zemelci

    Zemelci Well-Known Member

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    (OOC: Giles and Harper content done with prior consent from Regal and Aut)

    Tonya
    As she explained the plan to Dante, Tonya watched as, inevitably, Dante flipped out, cursing out both of her teammates and the person responsible for planning the whole affair, Ashley. “That’s unfair and you know it on all accounts. If Trixie’s a traitor then you’d better lock me up with her, because I’m just as much a traitor as her. You didn’t see Damon with her and how she broke out and what it took to do it, plus Damon’s dead body, is more than enough proof combined that she’s on our side now. As for Kasumi, she doesn’t even need to stand, but once she’s in that base and into the system, she could call down its entire arsenal to protect us at a second’s notice. They don’t have a cyberpath, that’s why they so desperately needed Kasumi, even though they couldn’t control her, having her gives us the edge and you know it. And whilst you might not think much of Ashley, she established this whole operation whilst we were hiding out in Chile recovering and she’s managing god knows how many successful missions keeping our fellow Savants out of those… those brainwashing camps. I know you want to, but you can’t keep blaming others and seeing in them the mistakes that led to our screwups. What’s on that server could genuinely turn the tide of this thing Dante, so I’m doing that mission, not because it’s a moronic plan and I feel guilty, but because the logic checks out, I’ve got the exclusive skillset for the job, and the payoff will be immense”. Finishing her impassioned speech, Tonya sagged slightly, sighing as she did so. She wanted Dante to understand that she wasn’t doing this out of guilt, but because it was the best plan they had in front of them. If this went well, they’d have Raypool on a silver platter.

    Giles and Harper
    Having made up their minds to stay, Giles and Harper would leave their room and follow the tunnels up towards what appeared to be the main hub of Hell’s Deep, finding signposts leading them through a series of seemingly naturally lit tunnels until they found a cafeteria. Lunch was easy enough to obtain and a quiet corner with it and the pair would be free to pass the time however they desired, though they wouldn’t see much of Toby across the afternoon. When they returned to their room, they’d find clothes in a range of sizes now stocked in the wardrobe with a note from Ashley informing them that she’d realised Harper would probably need some things to change into and that if they had any specific requests, to just ask. Beyond that, they would go without contact until, in what, judging by the clock and hallway light, was supposedly early evening there would be a knock on the pair’s door, outside which they would find a freshly showered Ashley, in a tank-top and yoga pants, holding a digital tablet. “Hey, is it alright if I come in?”
     
  7. braetwalda

    braetwalda Well-Known Member

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    "What body? We only have her word that he's even dead!" Dante snarled in response to Trixie supposedly killing her former master, whose body had conveniently been burned to a crisp in a fire from what he'd gathered. It would be all to easy for her to undermine this entire operation from within, to just slowly bleed it of key members through "accidents" and "failed missions" until it was nothing but a handful of scared resistance fighters at which point the hammer would fall and crush them like bugs "besides what exactly is so damn important on that server that you're willing to risk your life on a plan devised by Ashley?" despite what she said about the woman setting up this entire operation, which lets face it was already here seeing as it mainly consisted of their former FBI team mates, he still had absolutely no faith in anything she'd come up with "...also does this have to be now? Can it not wait until we've rescued Markus and Angel, and Kasumi has had chance to recover?" and I've had chance to dispose of Trixe...or at least the very least let her know what will happen if something should go wrong, he silently added, quietly hoping to delay the mission long enough to come up with a viable alternative that didn't require Tonya to work with such unreliable team mates and intel.
     
  8. Lord Regal

    Lord Regal The West Team Sheriff

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    (Harper's actions cleared with Autumn)

    The day passed about as smoothly as could be expected, going off the fact they were stuck in an underground base full of people neither of them trusted and a couple they kinda did. Lunch was tense, Giles constantly looking over his shoulder, but everything after they returned to the room was enjoyable. From her shifting form upon them finding the new clothes for her, becoming the super short woman with blonde hair to her waist, to the expected activities, to holding Harper as she slept more, to a utilitarian shared shower, and then to braiding her hair, something that he had some pride in knowing how to do...another perk of being super close with your younger sister, he supposed. They chatted about nothing of real importance, Harper drinking steadily from a bottle of wine she'd stolen from the kitchen as he worked. Giles partook here and there, but had only consumed one glass by the time she polished off her fourth. The former aristocrat had just finished braiding when a knock came at the door. Harper was too far gone to answer readily, so he rose and headed over, sword flashing into his hand as he went. The sword's life was brief, however, as the other side only held Ashley again, and out of the official people at the base she was the closest one to being trustworthy. She'd given them enough gestures on good faith, he could at the very least not have his weapons out if she was alone. "Sure, come in," he responded easily, looking around behind her to make sure no one else was around, closing and securing the door behind her. "Forgive us, we've been drinking a bit, not enough to be completely gone but...that bottle's about empty, and I can't claim most of it." He shrugged before guiding her over to the seating, propping himself up on the bed so she could take the armchair if she wanted. "What brings you to our personal corner of hell this evening?" His tone held no malice, and he intentionally didn't gesture. She was free to interpret it either as him expressing his displeasure at the fact he was still there, or a general lashing out of the circumstances they'd all been stuck in for the last quarter year. Both were entirely accurate anyway...why did it matter which she chose?
     
  9. Zemelci

    Zemelci Well-Known Member

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    Tonya
    “You want to know what’s on that server? Try every DSRP file, filling in the corrupted data in Kasumi’s head, giving us full and irrefutable evidence of every crime that the DSRP have committed since they were made.” Tonya stared at Dante, determination in her eyes. “We can end them with this Dante, we can prove that they lied, to Congress, to the public, to everyone, even to the President. You dismiss her plans out of hand but it’s her planning that’s kept the Resistance running a base of operations out of every state. And no, it can’t wait. You know the plan for Angel and Markus’ rescue, anything that big and they’ll be on double the alert and prepared for any additional PR situations. We get the data quietly now, pull off the rescue, and then hit them whilst they’re still reeling. It’s the best option, whether you want to admit it or not.” Tonya’s frustration was showing through, she knew he didn’t approve but he was being overly judgemental, and he knew it, his anger, justified or not, over how they’d been beaten in the original investigation was clouding his view of Ashley overall and Tonya wasn’t having it. As much as she loved Dante, she refused to throw out this plan when it was their best option in the moment.

    Ashley
    As Giles joked about welcoming her into their personal corner of hell, Ashley chuckled wryly “Has the name caught on with you too then?” She remained standing, the digital tablet tucked under her arm as she continued. “No great reason that I’m visiting, I just wanted to say that I appreciate you being willing to trust us, or at least me, enough to stay for now, and extend the offer once more that if you know anyone on the outside, particularly any Savants, and you want them somewhere safe, I can help with that. Also, I figured that since you’re going to be staying here, the least I could do is properly run you through what the Resistance actually does and answer any questions you have about us. There’ve been a lot of lies about us which makes it harder for people to trust and I get that, so I’m here to try help clear anything you need up.”
     
  10. braetwalda

    braetwalda Well-Known Member

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    Evidence...this was all for evidence. Evidence that would most likely be ignored by the vast majority of people seeing as the DSRP were "humanities last line of defence against the mutant threat living within!" and in Dante's experience it was surprising how much people would actually overlook for the sake of national security "I'd sooner you got the name and address of every DSRP agent, you know, something we can actually use to win this war" he grumbled, but it was clear that her mind was set on this mission and that it was pointless to try and change it or even attempt to delay the inevitable without having a full blown domestic right here in the corridor for the entire resistance to see. And even then it probably wouldn't achieve anything other than to upset her further "you know what....you go and do whatever you want, I've already got one rescue mission to arrange so I may as well organise a second while I'm at it" he said with a defeated sigh as he lost the will to fight with her about it any further "I'm going to a bar to drink alone, call me when it's over or when the DSRP have their ransom demands sorted" he said before slowly turning and heading down the corridor away from her, figuring that there must be a way out somewhere, with part of him wishing that he'd thought to ask Emerald how he and his friend had got inside so he use it get out. All in all between Emerald and Tonya it was beginning to feel like a wasted trip coming here, should have stayed in Chile, at least it would have been warm.
     
  11. Autumneverlast

    Autumneverlast Well-Known Member

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    Stupid door knocks. Killing nice evenings. Harper had gotten a reasonably pleasant, if tense, lunch, a bottle of wine nabbed off the kitchen shelves, some very fun private time, another nap, and her hair was braided for the first time in years. Not to the standard of a model and she'd have asked Giles to start over again if she really needed to look sharp for a show but she usually wore her hair straight for a show and... yeah. Hair, braided, Giles did good. At things including but not limited to braiding her hair. Also the wine was solid, not great, but good enough to be drinkable and she'd probably drank a little too much too quick okay the bottle was almost empty already but she was fine and life was nice for the first time in a long time. And now there was someone knocking on the stupid door. Thankfully, Pretty Boy was more up to being an adult than she was and went over to open it instead of just letting the butt wanted to interrupt her evening knock until they went away. Unfortunately, now that meant Ashley was standing outside their door. Crap. There was a very short list of people Harper would have been happy to see outside her door at the moment and Ashley wasn't one of them. And before she could kick the brunette out, Giles invited her in. Double crap. Dumb dummy.

    Or a pair of dummies apparently, since Ashley was visiting for no reason and thanking them, of all things, for not having left yet. For trusting them. "I'm most of the way into a bottle of wine, but if you're sharing, I want whatever you're on. Like... I get the Q&A for Giles, but I've lived here for... how long. Iunno. A bit. I know what you people do. And if you think I'm gonna bring a friend to a war zone, you gotta be on the moon. Or on Mars, I guess, since you actually think I trust you for some reason." Harper held out her hand, lazily meeting Ashley's. "Cough it up, go get it if you need to, we can all get high and Giles can answer any questions. Ask. Crap. I swear I'm not that drunk."
     
  12. Lord Regal

    Lord Regal The West Team Sheriff

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    Ashley wanted to thank them for trusting the Resistance? Yeah, that was misplaced. And she was willing to answer questions too, which Old Giles would have jumped at the chance. New Giles...was skeptical, to say the least. Harper beat him to the punch on saying anything though, more or less outright stating Ashley was on something and she wanted some of it. With a good-natured sigh, Giles gently pushed her hand down. "Not exactly how I would've put it, but the important details are there. We don't trust the Resistance. At all, really. My personal preference would be to be far away from here right now. But Harper thinks we're about as safe here as anywhere else, which isn't saying much, and I'm more or less just along for the ride. I know you just well enough that you personally won't backstab us. I have no such illusions about, mm, literally anyone else on this base that isn't in this room, Dante, or Toby." A slight glare had come across the former aristocrat's face as he'd talked, prompting him to sigh and take a deep breath. "Sorry, slightly out of line, I'm not used to not being a total wreck anymore, little rusty on the sugarcoating end of conversations. Bottom line, we're here, we're not happy about it. Your boss isn't either, you've told us as much. All the more reason to stay in here as much as possible, hard to piss someone off if you don't do anything that impacts them. I'm sure he'll be happy with his Anders pawn being content to pace his cell, even if I'm not legally an Anders anymore." Another deep breath, this time accompanied by a rubbing of his eyes. "Sorry, this isn't like me. Stress, or fear, I really don't know anymore. Plus a couple glasses of wine, though I'm closer to sober than my drinking partner." A ghost of a smile played across his face for a moment. "I don't know what questions I want to ask, and I'm pretty sure if I did I wouldn't be allowed to know most of them. All I know of the Resistance is if even a tenth of the news stories are true I very much don't like your methods, regardless of the goals. I know you're feeding the media an easy target to paint Savants in a bad light...and that's more or less it. Hell, I know more about the ABCD goons than you guys. Artificial Savants...if people were thinking rationally they'd realize how classic of a 'fight fire with fire' situation this was. Though I guess they're better than altered Savants..." gone was any trace of any good humor, and a slight shudder cut him off. "So, yeah. That's what I know. Feel free to supplement anything I'm authorized to know, I guess? Or abandon the conversation and have a glass, I really can't say I'd blame you."