EARTH You've Got A Friend

Discussion in 'Private Roleplay' started by Niamh O'Rourke, May 11, 2018.

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  1. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    Lucrezia made it quite clear that less was more. Niamh didn't need to have a complete breakdown but she'd be coached through it before any appearance in court. A few short more notes and she'd gave Niamh her marching orders. The Irishwoman took her business card, it had the archaic nature of a signet ring but it was an unspoken symbol of her wealth. No one else bothered with that mad affectation unless they were rich and powerful enough to merit it. It was a minature work of art, the paper alone was probably worth enough to feed a family on Basic for a few days.

    She rose, mildly disgruntled at how curtly she was dismissed. Still, she was in her domain and if she wanted to come out of this then she would kowtow and do whatever Dionisi told her to. "Until tomorrow Mrs Dionisi" the next words nearly choked her, "Thank you" the basic civility took some effort to get out. Niamh left the office with as much confidence as she could muster.

    __________________________________

    Niamh was somewhat fresher on her second visit to Mrs Dionisi's office. The benefits of a long bath, a bottle of wine, and eight hours of glorious dreamless sleep. She'd been busy in the intervening time. She'd compiled the report as best she could with the list of all known employees that had survived the incident as well as those who could possibly have testimony against her. The other details, including that of the operations at the camp, were locked under a layer of encryption software, she'd only only open it at the office.

    Her garb was a bit more feminine this time. A neat pencil skirt with a white blouse. She wore her hair up and had on a pair of small heels, the clicking of them heralding her arrival. "I have an appointment with Mrs Dionisi" she informed the secretary with a haughty tone to her voice. "She's expecting me" a salve to cover up that she'd been ordered to be there at nine o clock sharp.
     
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  2. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Hell in High Heels

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    Letizia arranged the documents on her desk in prim, proper order.

    No cognac today.

    “Let her in, Aysha.”

    And so she did, prompt as ever. Mrs. Issa had been her secretary through two marriages and a half – the first one her own, then two husbands of Mrs. Dionisi. She was reliable, sharp, and quiet; all of them qualities Letizia greatly appreciated.

    Unlike the day before, her gesture to the armchair was accompanied by a soft “Good morning. Sleep well?”

    No longer did sophistication cling to her frame like a crumpled spectre. The younger woman looked considerably more fresh and ready to face her demons. Or was it the law?

    Potato, potahto— though that’d be rude to say aloud in present company.

    O’Rourke was an irish last name, after all.
     
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  3. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    The pleasantries disarmed Niamh a little. She didn't falter, just sat before nodding. "I did actually, thank you" . She composed herself in the chair, retrieving the data chip from her handbag. "All you need is on this" she said, placing the small storage device on the desk in front of her. "Before I decrypt it though, I'll need to know the security measures you have in place here". Her gaze didn't leave Lucrezia's.

    Niamh had done her own digging on her yesterday evening. It was aggravating to read just how respected Mrs Lucrezia Letizia Dionisi was. Well educated, fluent in several languages, beautiful, wealthy. Her list of achievements was impressive for a woman only turning forty. There was nary a hair out of place in her any of her photos on file, the woman appeared immaculate. Pictures of her with the sick, the poor, the starving, there was nothing for leverage. The only curse she seemed to have was bad luck with husbands.

    "I'll admit, I'm curious how an Italian lawyer ended up in North America" she said, giving another look around the office. She could probe herself for information.
     
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  4. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Hell in High Heels

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    Brown eyes belie warmth more easily than blue – it was a secret Letizia learned early on.

    “Do you think your bosses would’ve hired me if I weren’t possessed of adequate discretion?” She took the chip and turned it over in her palm. “Whatever we discuss or view in here doesn’t leave the room.”

    She attached the device to her work terminal and let it copy the files while she sipped on a cool glass of water. A bottle this clean cost near-on as much as that cognac in the cabinet behind her.

    “The same way an Irish scientist ends up in remote Asia, Miss O’Rourke. Hard work. Now, while I certainly appreciate your interest in my career, we have more pressing matters to attend to. Unless you’d rather reminisce while the prosecution compiles their case?”

    Letizia tilted her head and gestured to the terminal – an unassuming text box in the middle of the projected screen was asking for the appropriate decryption key.
     
    #24 Lucrezia Dionisi, May 12, 2018
    Last edited: May 12, 2018
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  5. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    Niamh's mouth tightened. Politely handled but it was a delicate way of saying Do you think I'm an idiot? "I just wanted to be sure" she said airily, trying to appear nonchalant about it all. Lucrezia took a sip of water while letting them copy to the work terminal. Niamh's keen gaze noted the label on the bottle. They could price higher than whiskey from the Western Isles.

    Lucrezia was right to business, deflecting Niamh's clumsy attempts at prying. A rapid riposte and she indicated the terminal. Trying not to look too sulky, Niamh cleared her throat, "Voice activation". Her tone became more guttural for a second "Rith an madra timpeall an teach. Ná bí buartha a mhac". The screen pinged once before Decryption Key Accepted flashed up after the nonsense rhyme.

    A multitude of files were on offer. Niamh reached out and tapped a map. "The site was here, near what would have been the old Kazakh/Kyrgyz border. The Tian Shan mountains are the main range here so it's quite inhospitable in parts". She realised she was giving pointless information so she sighed. "What would you like to look at first?"
     
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  6. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Hell in High Heels

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    Her gaze flickered over to the girl the second the odd language left her mouth. Somewhat melodic, though not in the same manner as Italian. Those who could actually speak it were as rare as Irish last names were common.

    Curious.

    Letizia looked over the files, unhurried despite Niamh’s urging. They seemed to lack any apparent order – probably assembled from multiple sources, then – but no name jumped out in particular. The lawyer tapped a thoughtful finger against her glass and leaned back in her seat.

    “Let’s start with the things that can hurt you the most. Who got out, who else has access to this information… anyone who can burn you to save their hide.” She paused; smiled. “I’m confident you won’t have trouble identifying those with the instinct.”
     
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  7. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    Niamh's expression was sharp at Lucrezia's comment, her eyes flickering to her. They blazed with a smouldering fury at the other woman's casual deduction. That smile was so serene. Niamh forced down the anger with an effort. "There's four others similar to me who made it out" she said.

    "I'm only really worried about these two" her fingers tapped the profiles to bring up a male and female picture. "Simon Adebisi and Catarina Velasquez. They're the only two with enough intelligence to possibly be a threat. They're jealous enough of my own capacity that I'm wary they might try to turn this into a personal vendetta, you know this word?"

    Both researchers were in their 20s. Adebisi's profile explained he hailed from Lagos, Velasquez's from Sao Paulo. "We all participated in the....clean up".
     
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  8. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Hell in High Heels

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    Letizia propped her chin up on an elbow as she scrutinized the two files. Another pair of scientists, looked about O’Rourke’s age.

    Get ‘em while they’re young.

    “...a personal vendetta, you know this word?”

    And arrogant.

    The woman expelled a steadying breath. Counted the zeroes again and considered if she couldn’t tack another one on at the end – for emotional damages, you understand.

    “As a matter of fact, I do,” she spoke as she leaned back, her tone as pleasant as ever. “È non manca tanto che io ti farlo una vendetta della mia, ragazza.”

    Letizia smiled. “Try and remember why you’re here, Miss O’Rourke. You need to avoid a prison sentence; I don’t need to be kind.”
     
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  9. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    Niamh's smirk faltered a little as Lucrezia addressed her in Italian. Her knowledge of that language went as far as grazie. The words were beautiful and melodic but the smile seemed a little fixed. Lucrezia made her point clear, restrict the pointless side comments and keep focused on the matter at hand. It wasn't going to affect the lawyer, she'd be paid no matter the result.

    "I'm getting to the point" she said, trying not to get too rattled. "What do you need to know about them? I've been in the same division as them for nearly a year so I can give you as much dirt as you want".
     
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  10. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Hell in High Heels

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    “Do any of them have ties to the dead boss?” She scrolled through the sparse information on file. Unsurprising, given Protogen’s modus operandi. “Perhaps some undue friendliness, late-night visits, a blatant bias…” she trailed off, leaving Niamh to fill the holes.

    “Other… dirt, as you put it, would also be useful, though less directly. So please. Regale me.”
     
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  11. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    Niamh nodded eagerly as Lucrezia prompted her, "Well with Catarina there was a bit too much friendliness alright. That slut would sleep with anyone or anything if it got her on the promotion ladder. I'm fairly certain she was riding Dr. Molina. She made a pass at me before too but I knew full well it was to try and weasel some info out of me" she said. "Simon? He played his cards closer to his chest. He was very private but he did his best to manipulate other members of the team against each other. He's a snake" it took one to know one.

    "I had higher test scores than both of them" she paused as if expecting a reaction but it didn't seem like Lucrezia was too concerned wtih school performance. "I know they were jealous of me. I'm better than either of them".
     
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  12. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Hell in High Heels

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    “Can you prove it?”

    Such a simple question, asked a thousand times throughout her career. “Any evidence of it in here? Somewhere else?” Letizia gestured to the laundry list of files on the screen. “I can work with rumors and talk, but more is better in this case.”

    “I also suggest you swallow that attitude for any statements you’ll be giving, Miss O’Rourke. It won’t do you any favors.”
     
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  13. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    Niamh tried not to snap back when Lucrezia interrupted her. She composed herself with a visible effort, taking a deep breath. Her eyes flashed but she shrugged, "Not...as I may have put it but I do have messages saved. There's a record of a meeting as well with our department head after we had a particularly vocal argument. We were called in for arbitration". Her fingers danced along the screen and she brought up a video, "And I do have this".

    The video was grainy but there was enough detail to make out the two players. "Molina" Niamh clarified needlessly as the man's face looked towards the camera. The woman came closer and they kissed. He took her hand and brought her into the next room. "Unfortunately I planted the bug in the wrong room but that's better than a kick in the teeth isn't it?" she seemed quite proud of her amateur espionage.

    The smirk left her face quickly. "I don't have as much on Simon though, he was always the more careful of the two".
     
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  14. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Hell in High Heels

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    Letizia kept her eyes on the girl while she listed off the incriminating material. Better than what they had to work with a moment ago.

    “Well, Simon has the misfortune of being a man, Miss O’Rourke. In eliciting pity out of an audience, you’ve the natural advantage here. Take care that you don’t squander it.”

    She motioned to the files with her stylus. “Let’s hear it. You don’t strike me as the sort to take a lashing lying down.”

    And if she was right, the recording had best be avoided. They couldn’t use anything that would fly O’Rourke’s true colors – the opposition was far too clever to miss that level of character inconsistency.
     
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  15. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    A smile flashed for a moment on Niamh's face. It had all the warmth of a wolf baring its teeth but Lucrezia had amused her there. "I'm glad he's had some misfortune then" she said, though she'd been warned already not to come across as such a cold bitch when testifying. It amused her a bit to think that she could be the one public opinion would side with.

    "Simon has twice been censured for fomenting discord amongst his colleagues. Relatively minor incidents all things considered" Niamh's tone said that she wouldn't have bothered with something so trivial. She preferred to fight her own battles rather than flee to higher ups. "He can be quite prickly to work with. He wouldn't be as tolerant as I am with failure" Niamh seemed ignorant to the fact that she'd almost made a joke.

    She brought up their two profiles again so that their pictures and details were visible for Lucrezia to study.

    Simon Adebisi. Twenty six years of age. Born in Lagos and graduating with his masters from Brazzaville. Fluent in Igbo, English, French, and Arabic. A classically trained violinist and a fan of opera, he appeared to be a man of culture. He looked quite well built for a scientist, it gave him a rugged sort of handsome look. The face was impassive, stoic and strong.

    Catarina Velasquez. Twenty four years of age. Born in Sao Paolo, studied in Brasilia. Fluent in Portuguese, Spanish, and English. Unlike Simon there were less extra curriculars. Catarina was a slum kid that had shown aptitude and rocketed upward with the help of scholarships and grants. A lot of corporations used it, it was a form of indentured servitude that few complained about. Her expression was pouty, lips pursed and with eyes that blazed.

    It'd match up with several points that Lucrezia had read on Niamh's file. All were of a similar age, all were in great physical condition, of proven high intellect, and destined for higher positions in the company. The problem was that the further you went up, the less spaces there were.
     
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  16. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Hell in High Heels

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    Letizia looked up to the screen to consider Niamh again. The woman had an irksome tendency to segue into self-praise in the middle of important discussion. She was quickly finding she preferred O’Rourke scared for her life and jet-lagged.

    Still, there was nothing for it.

    “By the looks of it, Velasquez and Adebisi will be just as eager to burn you as you are. If that fails, they will likely attempt to take you down with them.” She paused and wet her throat again. “There’s a key chink in their armor, however – I’m not defending them.”

    Every time she smiled, the expression seemed a few degrees cooler. “Another matter to consider here is that the Löwe doesn’t yet know I will be representing you. It’s best to keep it that way for now. Thus when asked, state something to the effect of I’m still searching for the right lawyer. In that situation, you are assigned a public defender by default until you request otherwise.”

    “Any questions, Miss O’Rourke?”
     
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  17. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    Lucrezia's confidence was infectious. Niamh could admire that arrogance and cocksure attitude even if so far the woman had been quite sharp with her. The lawyer's smile was as welcoming as a shark's. She nodded obediently, "I'll do that Mrs Dionisi" she promised, filing it away with the list of other instructions. Lose the bitch attitude, look more contrite, dress cheaper, and keep smart comments to herself.

    Her hand came to her mouth for a second as she thought, "Just...you are going to get me off aren't you? I mean you're being paid enough to care? I-I can't go to prison. I have too much to do. I'm too smart. I've my whole career ahead of me". A calm indication of Niamh's priorities. Several hundred deaths didn't equate to the twenty years or more she could be facing on a penal colony.
     
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  18. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Hell in High Heels

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    How on Earth did she get through this yesterday?

    Letizia placed a pair of fingers on her temple and pressed a few circles into the budding headache. Sei figure, cara. Sei figure.

    “I suppose this ought to be a learning experience for you, Miss O’Rourke – about the value of working with the right people. It doesn’t matter how smart you are if you put your trust into incompetent hands.”

    Her lips twitched upwards into a faint smile.

    “Do what I tell you, and you will walk away from this unscathed.”
     
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  19. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    Lucrezia didn't quite reprimand Niamh but the rebuke was enough to have the younger woman stare at her. The comment about incompetence did salve her wounded pride, lightening the blow. "Yes Miss Dionisi" she said, forcing her tone to be civil. The smile was reassuring but the words quite clear, Just do as you're told.

    Hands on her hips, she bit her lip as she studied the files for a moment before dropping her gaze to Lucrezia. "If you're telling the truth, there'll be a substantial bonus attached" she promised. A sigh and her own hand went up to her head. "What's the next step in all this then? I'm already on suspension from Protogen and forced to mullock around the place until this is resolved. The shopping trip yesterday was diverting but aside from that there's little else to do". A mind as sharp as hers wasn't used to such boredom.
     
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  20. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Hell in High Heels

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    “A bonus,” echoed Letizia, tone flat. “What do you think you can offer me that your bosses can’t?”

    Amusement began bleeding through at the edges as her patience with Niamh waned.

    “I’m your lawyer, not your babysitter. What you do in order to keep busy is none of my concern.” She removed the data chip from her terminal and leaned back to unlock the safe in her desk. With a soft hiss the door clicked open; she placed the chip inside and shut it again.

    “Pick up a hobby, Miss O’Rourke. You know what they say about idle hands.”
     
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