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EARTH Tale as Old as Time

Discussion in 'Private Roleplay' started by Mariko Harper, Dec 30, 2017.

  1. Evan Barnes

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    Antumbralite
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    Evan wanted to argue the point with Sophie, but it would be of no help now. The man was dead, just like some of the SWAT team left behind at the safe house, just like Devereaux. Innocent individuals, simply performing the tasks they signed up for. In a way, that was all Evan had been doing, himself, up until the moment Devereaux was shot by one of their own.

    It was due to a guilty man, one Trevor Moreau, spinning a tale to cover his own tracks, that put such innocent people like Sophie and Evan and the police officers in a situation where they had to kill one another to survive. And if Evan survived, it would be his mission to see that Moreau did not.

    Mariko squeezing his shoulder broke his train of thought. He did not speak or turn to look at her, but simply placed a hand on top of hers, returning the reassuring squeeze. His injuries were not fatal and would heal in time, so long as no internal bleeding or punctured organs ruined that. Evan would be in pain and unable to perform his duties at an acceptable level, but he would do his best. He would be damned to fail Mariko again.
     
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  2. Sophie Iverson

    Sophie Iverson Tell me your secrets

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    Sophie pulled them into an industrial storage facility and carefully parked the van out of sight from the main road, then left it running to run down the battery. She pulled Evan from the passenger seat and, gesturing at @Marianne El Mokrani for some help, hauled him over to a massive loading door.

    The huge, double-truck-width portal opened out into a vast hangar-like space, in which were stacked thousands of large storage units eight storeys high and stretching off into the distance in both directions. Red lights winked slowly in rippling patterns on an access panels in front of each storage unit. They passed row after row of them, Sophie taking a turning at "1F00-0" inwards into the grid.

    She glanced once at her hand terminal when they reached "1F36-0", in the middle of an aisle of identical-looking containers, and waved it in front of the sensor, which blinked green and unlocked the pressure door with some hissing of atmosphere and squeaking of rubberised polymer.

    They stepped into the space. It was hardly spacious, but it was larger than one might have expected. Four cots, a sturdy-looking aluminium shower unit, a portable stove and a set of lockers were lined up against the walls. A large table filled the centre. It smelled slightly of ozone and plastic, but it was warm and secure.

    "Help me put Barnes on one of these cots. I need one green box and one red box from the rightmost locker, then help yourselves to clean uniforms and food from the others. The weapons locker will remain secured."
     
    #142 Sophie Iverson, Feb 26, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
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  3. Mariko Harper

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    Once they were inside the relative safety of the unit, Mariko set Canelé down on the table that was positioned in the middle of the room. The cat gave a meek sound of protest, hopped down and scurried beneath one of the low cots for protection.

    Mariko gave a heavy sigh and smoothed her hands over her dark hair as she moved over to the locker that Sophie had mentioned. It took her a moment to find the boxes that the woman needed, but she returned to the blonde agent shortly after they had gotten Evan situated on the other cot.

    She avoided meeting Sophie's gaze as she set the boxes down next to her, then stepped away from her. There were still splinters of wooden shrapnel stuck in her aching cheek and she needed to remove them.

    Silently, she grabbed a metal stool, a first aid kit, and a rag, then dragged them over to a locker with a mirror affixed to the door. It was a simple task, and it gave her something to focus on -- something that wasn't the fact that several people had tried to kill her today, and that this new companion Evan had found didn't seem to have a problem with killing innocent people.

    As much as she didn't want to admit it, she was rattled.

    The tweezers in the medical kit were simple, but effective. It was an agonizing process to pull the splinters free from the drying blood and she grit her teeth together to muffle the pained grunts that escaped her. Removing the pieces of shattered wood reopened the wounds and fresh blood had started to drip down her cheek as a result.

    "Fuuucking sonuvabitch." She hissed as she tried to pluck one of the last, stubborn pieces free, but her hands had started to shake too much to make it an easy job.

    At some point while she tended to the injury, her cat slithered out from her hiding place and jumped up onto her lap. The fluffy tabby curled up in place and quietly started to purr.

    It helped to soothe Mariko's nerves, at least enough so that she could dig out the rest of the shrapnel from her cheek and flush the wounds with the disinfectant. After that had been taken care of, she pressed a folded piece of gauze against the injured cheek to staunch the bleeding and taped it in place.

    She gathered the cat in her arms and moved her over to a cot, setting her down gently then returned to the lockers to find herself a clean set of clothes.

    Her mind raced as she tried to think of something to say, but nothing seemed right. If she tried to say something to Sophie, she'd probably either start crying or screaming -- neither of which was something she wanted to do at the moment. Evan was in too much pain of his own and Marianne was so furious that she might just shoot her on principle.

    She didn't even bother to hide herself as she pulled the bloodstained clothes off her frame and tossed them aside, replacing them with a fresh pair of black trousers and a grey undershirt, with a jacket that matched the trousers. At least she was able to find herself a pair of socks and boots.
     
  4. Sophie Iverson

    Sophie Iverson Tell me your secrets

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    Sophie finished arranging Evan on the cot and took the first-aid supplies from Mariko with a nod of thanks. The other woman's refusal to meet her eyes stung a little, but she turned back to the injured man before it showed and started pulling on sterile gloves.

    Steeling herself, she opened the red box. A bag of blood concentrate, a biofoam injector, and a morphine patch came out. Pulse check: thready. There was almost certainly internal bleeding, and with the past events he had probably lost a lot of blood. She pulled out a pair of paramedic's scissors and cut her way up his sleeve before wiping the morphine patch hard all the way up his forearm to let the microdermal fabric do its work. He struggled a little, protesting, but she pushed him back down.

    "Mariko can take care of herself. If I don't stop this bleeding, you are going to die."

    She cut away the rest of his shirt next, suppressing a girlish urge to blush by sheer force of will. There was a massive purpling bruise that had spread across the man's muscled torso, and she could already see that at least two ribs were gone. She pressed gently, willing medical training to come back to her: another two were fractured or bruised. She wiped down his side and decided against injecting the foam internally; instead, she made a light coating over his skin that would eventually solidify over to support the injury and keep any swelling down.

    "I need to fix an IV line. Marianne, help me hold him steady."

    The line went in smoothly; she started the blood and gave him coagulants to stem the bleeding, and then it was done. She opened the green box and pulled out a set of bandages and a chemical ice pack to finish up; she wrapped the bandages lightly around the injured side, keeping the ice pack loosely against the hardening foam.

    "That will do until we can get to a medical facility. Do not try get up and move around unless you have to."
     
    #144 Sophie Iverson, Mar 4, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2018
  5. Marianne El Mokrani

    Marianne El Mokrani Tres Chic Anarchiste

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    Evan's bulk took some hefting to get him inside and onto the makeshift operating table. The same broad shoulders and muscled build that had had Mariko blushing now had Marianne swearing. It didn't help that she herself was feeling less than stellar. The unexpected gun battle with a Parisian SWAT team had left Marie feeling mildly murderous.

    "Putain" she muttered, rubbing her shoulder after they'd gotten him on the cot. She moodily obeyed the instruction to hold him steady, her hand stroking at his brow and her voice murmuring softer comforts in a mixture of Berber and French. Her face grimaced at the sight of his bare torso. Evan had been through the grinder. "Merci" she allowed once, looking at Sophie.

    She let herself slump into a chair after Sophie had finished tending to Evan. She was exhausted. She tugged her top up a little and swore at the sight of more marks there on her stomach. She could feel the bruises and aches all over her body. Marie got to picking slivers of glass out of herself. She took a sip from the medicinal alcohol, spitting it out on the floor in revulsion at the taste. "Merde!" she said, wiping her mouth with her forearm before getting back to work.

    "'Ave you two fixed yourselves?" she enquired of the other two women. She tried to keep her voice casual. Mariko looked ready to snap.
     
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  6. Evan Barnes

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    Evan had thought he had beat back the fainting, but when he came to on a cot in a tiny room he had never seen before, he suddenly doubted it. The last thing he remembered was Mariko's hand squeezing his shoulder, and now Sophie was stabbing him with an IV needle and poking at his ribs. Oddly enough, he felt nothing more than a dull ache; whether that was due to Sophie's patch-job or the shock of his body in survival mode, he did not care enough to ponder. At her advice not to move, Evan insisted on moving into a sitting position, resting his back against the wall. It shot daggers of pain through the top half of his body, but it quickly subsided when he relaxed into his new position.

    Observing Mariko's and Marianne's conditions, he felt his stomach sink. He gave himself a moment to collect his voice before he spoke. "I'm sorry, both of you. I shouldn't have left. I'm sorry..." Of course, had he not left, he would not have had Sophie's assistance retrieving the pair and getting them off-world. Yet, if he stayed, he would have been there to protect them, or move them to a safer location. Evan was having trouble making sense of it all. He had the clarity to assume it was whatever pain killers Sophie had injected him with working their magic. In his years of violent employment, Evan had seen it enough to know you just stop struggling and go along for the ride.

    He focused on something less strenuous, something that was factual and not something he had to analyze the what-if's or how-come's. "This is Sophie," Evan said to Mariko and Marianne, gesturing lazily to her. "She was here for Devereaux, and now she's here for us." That was enough from him to get the conversation rolling. He'd let the woman explain the rest.
     
  7. Sophie Iverson

    Sophie Iverson Tell me your secrets

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    Sophie pulled off the gloves, tucking them into a sterile pouch that for later disposal. She shook her head at the journalist's question.

    "They didn't get me." Except in places I didn't even know I could be hurt.

    Then she was done, for the moment, and just like that the adrenalin rush faded. A daze settled on her; she hit the clasps on both boxes and set them upright, ready to be taken back to the supply cupboard. She was struck by how tired she was, like flood defences had failed before a rushing tide of exhaustion.

    She got to her feet, trying not to sway, and heard Evan speak. She rewound her way through what he had said, but there was not much more to add.

    "Agent Iverson, Office of Naval Intelligence. We'll see about getting upwell tomorrow."
     
  8. Sophie Iverson

    Sophie Iverson Tell me your secrets

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    "Get some rest. We're leaving at oh-seven-thirty tomorrow."

    There hadn't been much to sort out before turning in. The hideaway was a full Faraday cage, blocking all signals in and out; they couldn't be tracked. Sophie took control of her companion's hand terminals remotely, from hers, and burned out their transmitters with a handy software hack she'd copied from @Yasmina Kasari.

    Next, she sent a message requesting pickup by Black Kite in twelve hours, at 0800, closest available landing zone. She made her regular check-in, repeating the date and time to a disinterested automatic system. Then she checked her weapon was close to hand, round in the chamber and safety on, and was asleep before her head hit the pillow.
     
  9. Mariko Harper

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    Though physically exhausted, Mariko's mind was restless and obstinately refused to allow the woman to fall asleep. Too many scenarios and questions swarmed within her to even close her eyes. Every time she tried that, all she could see was the fighting that had taken place over the past day and a half. A lot people had died... and for what?

    Why were the putting so much faith in this murderous woman? Where exactly were they going in the morning?

    With a soft sigh, Mariko pushed herself up into a seated position on the small cot. Canele gave a quiet mrow of protest as she was dislodged from Mariko's lap in the process.

    Rubbing the tiredness from her eyes with one hand, Mariko shuffled over to the locker she had stored her stuff inside and pulled out her bag that had the binder she had stolen tucked away inside. She glanced over her shoulder, from what she could tell everyone else was already asleep. If the blonde was already out, she likely had little to be worried about for now.

    She made her way over to her cot and sank down until the uncomfortably firm surface, tucking her legs beneath herself to get more comfortable as she leaned against the wall behind her. The binder was nestled in her lap, and even though Sophie had fried the transmitter in her hand terminal, it still worked just fine as a flash light and a camera.

    Afraid of losing the binder, or having to ditch it, she wanted a back up copy. Just in case. She was too tired to read through the pages and make sense of them, so she passed her time painstakingly compiling the information to a more portable and less conspicuous medium.

    By the time she had finished, only a few hours were left before Sophie had said they were leaving, but the menial task had been enough to put her mind at ease and she drifted off to sleep while still leaning against the wall with the binder clasped gently in her arms.
     
  10. Marianne El Mokrani

    Marianne El Mokrani Tres Chic Anarchiste

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    Marianne had slept awkwardly curled up in the bunk, with her handgun near to hand. The weariness had hit her, all of them overwhelmed by the events of the day. Adrenaline can only take you so far, now that the immediate danger was removed, Marie let fatigue wash over her. She'd not slept with a weapon by her for a few years, it brought back a lot of memories. Not all of them were welcome.

    It was a miracle none of the quartet were worse hurt. To come out of the whole debacle with only one wounded party, it wasn't lucky, it was divine intervention. She prayed when she woke, murmuring a few heartfelt words to whatever deity cared to be listening. The aches and pains were still there, she knew she'd be stiff and sore for the next few days.

    The blonde anglais hadn't tried to murder them in their sleep which was a relief. The way Marie was feeling right now though it might have been considered a mercy. She bustled about, finding some ration packs. A sniff, not quite haute cuisine but it had calories. She bit into a bar, grimacing at the taste. Hunger won out and she began to chew it without enthusiasm.
     
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  11. Evan Barnes

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    Evan's eyes snapped open when he heard an alarm. He went to sit up, realizing he was already in a sitting position, and instead only managed to irritate his extremely sore torso. His right hand shot out to the holster on the corner of his headboard, but at that instant, he remembered he was not in his own bed, and instead awkwardly slapped the wall of the small room he found himself in. Cheeks flushing in embarrassment, Evan groaned as he grasped his ribs, turning his attention to where Sophie slept on a cot. The alarm came from her hand terminal.

    The events of the last... day? Two days? came rushing back to him. He had no idea just how much time had passed since his hasty exit from the Vauncimonte R&D facility, but Evan was perfectly recalling the details. The anger towards Moreau and Gunther; the guilt towards Mariko, Marianne, and the Paris officers caught in the line of fire; the sadness towards Devereaux, all returned as the coma-like state of the sedatives wore off. He let those emotions fuel his determination, and he found himself unsteadily getting to his feet.

    Evan clenched his fists. It was go time.
     
  12. Sophie Iverson

    Sophie Iverson Tell me your secrets

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    Sophie had come to a light doze just before the alarm triggered, and so merely flicked open her eyes when it went off. She rolled to check her hand terminal and left it blaring for two more cycles to let the others awaken while she checked it. Both her check-in and the transport request had been acknowledged without comment from above. No alarms or sensor trips in the night.

    She saw motion in the corner of her eye and looked over in time to see Evan let go of his side and swing his legs over the side of the cot. He certainly looked better - there was more colour in his cheeks - but a touch of paleness remained. She watched him waver a little standing up, but ultimately saw nothing that suggested neurological or nerve damage. Just sore muscles and severe bruising. She gave him a stern physician's look for a long moment before going to put on her boots.

    "A Naval Intelligence shuttle will pick us up in thirty minutes. Be ready to leave in twenty."
     
    #152 Sophie Iverson, Apr 21, 2018
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2018
  13. Luc Devereaux

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    HĂ´pital Haven, Downtown Paris


    When Luc Devereaux opened his eyes, all he saw were colors and shapes. The blurriness matched his mental clarity. He vaguely made out a woman's voice, but it took a moment before her words made sense. She was squeezing his left hand while she thanked God, and proceeded to shout over her shoulder.

    "He's awake! Luc's awake!"

    He heard the door slide open, and four new blurs entered his vision. Someone was crying. He felt a slight weight on his arm, and something wet. Was it tears?

    Four voices started at once, and it sounded like thunder inside his head. All Luc could do was moan to protest the noise. He wanted to go back to sleep. When he tried to adjust into a more comfortable position to do so, the worst pain of his life shocked him to alertness. His moan turned into a shout.

    He felt two sets of hands on him now, reassuring him, by the tone of the nearest voices. As his vision began to clear, it was Ada Neville that he saw first. The lines of her face grew sharper, and she looked exhausted. Her cheeks were damp from crying, but she still managed a bright smile when she saw the recognition in Luc's eyes.

    The other set of hands belonged to a nurse, who smiled warmly at him as she typed commands into the interface of the auto-doc next to his bed. When his eyes drifted down to three men at the foot of his bed, the barrage of voices started again. Luc winced, holding up a hand.

    "Gentlemen, can we please give Mr. Devereaux a moment to get his bearings straight? Come with me," said the nurse, motioning the men out the door. She turned back to give Luc a wink and a smile before following them out of the room.

    When the door shut, Ada met his gaze. "I think she likes you."

    Luc laughed with some infernal sound like grinding metal, and quickly stopped from the pain it caused. "Ada. What the hell happened?" He rasped, clearly needing to warm up his voice.

    Ada began sobbing again. "Luc, we thought you were dead! Gunther shot you up badly, and you didn't have your vest on. I couldn't feel your pulse or breathing. When the paramedics arrived, they told me you were alive, but barely."

    Luc jogged his memory. The last thing he remembered was his shootout with Gunther. He knew he had been hit, but it must have gotten worse. Much worse. It was then he remembered being with Evan and Mariko beforehand. "Evan? Miss Harper?"

    Ada had stopped sobbing, and her expression darkened as she wiped her tears. "Oh, Luc. We're all in a lot of trouble... Moreau is after us. Those two made it out of the building, and now there's a manhunt for them. I had to stand over your body with my gun drawn to keep the rest of the team back until the ambulance arrived."

    Luc was confused. That made no sense. "The rest of the team... what -- why?"

    Ada cut him off with the answer before he could form the question. "They sold us all out, just like Gunther. They were going to take you away, until I stopped them. Moreau is blackmailing them, or paying them off. They're all ready to testify that you went after Gunther in cold blood."

    Luc was stunned. Apparently the security investigation he began conducting with Evan and Mariko struck a nerve. It was a moment before he could speak again. "The three men?"

    Ada squeezed his hand again. "Two cops and my cousin. He's a lawyer, and he's agreed to represent us. Do you want to talk to him?"

    Luc groaned and went into a short coughing fit. "Bring them all in, but I'm talking first." There was a fire behind his weak voice. A lawyer would only delay the inevitable. If Moreau was going to these lengths to frame them, Luc and Ada needed a more effective solution.

    After Ada retrieved the men from the hall, they filed back into the room, looking at him expectantly. "Gentleman," he acknowledged. Luc looked at the lawyer first. "I appreciate you coming, but your services will not be needed."

    A protest came from both him and Ada, that Luc silenced by holding up his hand. He then addressed the other two men. "Officers, I take it I'm being released into your custody when I'm able to leave?"

    "That's the idea, yeah," was the answer from one of them.

    Luc nodded. "Fine. I'll sign away my right to legal counsel and answer your questions, on one condition."

    The lawyer's eyes bulged from his head. Ada began to protest again. The officers chuckled. This was a clear win, as far as they were concerned. This time, the other one spoke. "What's that?"

    Luc tried to look tough, though he imagined he cut a pretty pitiful sight at the moment. "You go to your boss, and tell them to go to their boss, and them to their boss, and go as high as you need to to find a @Sophie Iverson that knows me. I want to talk to her first, then I'll surrender myself to your custody."
     
  14. Sophie Iverson

    Sophie Iverson Tell me your secrets

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    The hard, abstract lines of the ONI shuttle looked good backed by the Paris skyline and a rising sun. Sophie had picked up a black uniform jacket to go over her clothes, and a patrol cap to keep her hair in check, and was grateful for it in the morning chill. The pilot set the craft down gently with the ramp already opening, but nobody come out to greet them. Spooks were not generally known for their appreciation of the personal touch, after all.

    They waited briefly for the ramp to come down fully,a nd then the interior lighting switched from red to green - which was their signal to board. Evan insisted on buckling himself in, even though he winced visibly while tightening the straps, but there were no complications and shortly the Black Kite was throttling up and making its burn for orbit.

    Next stop: Naval Intelligence Headquarters, Luna Naval Base.
     
    #154 Sophie Iverson, Apr 26, 2018
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2018
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