2009-11-21: Another Woman Who Asks Too Much



Date: November 21st, 2009


Tracy puts herself in Gene's debt for a favour he very much does not like.

"Another Woman Who Asks Too Much"


New York City

To say that Tracy calling him was unexpected would be a lie. Of course, he expects this to be a trap. After all, if Micah was captured, he's sure that Tracy had some part of it… Or at the least was willing to let it slide. It's just the latest misunderstanding that comes between Gene and the Sisters Blonde (Niki and Gene didn't see eye-to-eye and it's likely the final twin won't be any nicer).

However, when Gene's grandfather called to say that Tracy was actually trying to find him, the young genius decided to entertain the idea. After all, she might be willing to listen to him considering how their last conversation went and if not… Well, that's what R2-D2 is for, who rests beside Gene's table. As he waits for Tracy to join him, he picks through his Happy Meal toy. Eyeing the toy with a frown, he casts it to the side. "More like a BARELY CONTENT Meal," he remarks, mostly to himself.

Tracy is at her wit's end: that's why she contacted Mr. Kensington, Gene's grandfather back in D.C., and it's why, now, she's pushing into the restaurant and looking for the young engineer. Though tired from her near-constant search for the Senator and the various other things weighing upon her that don't make it any easier, she manages to look put-together, at least. The blue sling holding her right arm in place stands out against monochromes: a slim-fitting black sweater with a small turtleneck, slate grey pants. Her hair is pulled back, parted, a few pieces hanging down around her face, but not messily.

As soon as she spies Gene — and how couldn't she, of course he has a robot — the lobbyist's pace becomes brisk, almost jogging until she reaches his table, coming up behind the opposite chair. "Gene," she greets with a polite but… reluctant… smile. "Thank you for agreeing to meet with me."

While Tracy is the charming New England business woman of perfection, Gene is merely his usual causal self. He wears his peacoat and jeans, though his hair is in a 'I got up, tried to comb it, but didn't care when it stayed where it was' mode. A brow is arched as he watches her come over. A few options of how to greet this woman rise, but he settles on one of the those that rise in the middle of the road.

"So, what's up? You usually don't talk to me unless it's important." He takes his small bag and offer it toward Tracy. "Fry?" Regardless of her response, he pulls it back to eat some more as he listens.

"No— thanks, I'm not really hungry." There is a desperate and even panicked edge to the lobbyist's otherwise cool and reserved demeanour; for the most part, she keeps her disarrayed emotions at bay, but the hints are there, in her quick-moving eyes, in her restless tension. The hand of Tracy's good arm — the left — clutches the back of the metal chair before she concedes to actually sit down across from Gene. "I have to call in a favour." Instantly, she raises her hand. "I know, you probably don't want to do anything for me. But this is… important." Direly important, given the way she stares determinedly across at the young man. "I'd owe you."

The geek god is silent for awhile, clearly not amused with this information. She's desperate, which means that it is likely something of importance (at least to her). Of course, the final fact leaves a sour taste in his mouth. He debates spitting out his fry, but decides to swallow and set the rest of his food to the distant side of the table. "While I have doubts out of any ability to collect even if I wanted…" He remember the last time he tried to ask for something in return for the Zimmerman information. "Just ask me what you want, maybe I'll be able to help."

Tracy is averse to even being here, her poise a guarded one as she sits and tries to agree to convince Gene to help her. She's desperate. She needs help. She needs it fast. And she knows, looking at Gene, that he's not going to like what she wants from him. "I'll do anything," she says tiredly. It might even be true. Leaning in very slightly, she lowers her voice, though it's not quite in conspiratorial hush; those most likely to overhear them at the nearest tables are under twelve.

"You have skills." She glances for an instant at R2. "You can do things with technology that other people can't. Faster." She's not wrong, is she? "I need to find someone." Reaching into the purse at her side, she draws a small, folded piece of white notepaper out. "If I gave you this phone number," she holds it up between two fingers, "Would you be able to track it? Triangulate the signal? It's a cell phone."

The paper is taken from Tracy's hand, the young man looking at it. "I could. It would likely require breaking into some government type stuff. It's illegal… But if it's the right thing to do or not is more dependant on who I'm looking for and why," Gene states as he pulls back. His tone is lowered as well, matching Tracy's more out of courtesy than a true desire to keep hush-hush.

Tracy folds her fingers over the empty air that contained the paper, protective of what it contains. The woman's jaw goes tight, cold as she delays answering him. Eventually, she lays her hand down on the table. "…You can't tell anyone," she prefaces. She manages to be fairly calm, professional. "It's the Senator. Ivory Wynn. He's been missing since Wednesday. Somewhere here in the city, presumably! The police know, but so far they have no idea where he is; of course his office is trying to avoid a media storm…"

After she explains, the woman appears particularly tired. A look containing a little more soul turns up on Gene, pained by the disappearance of Ivory. She's been searching so hard and … nothing. "…I just need to find him."

Denial. It takes a split second before Gene looks into Tracy's pained eyes and finds… that this isn't some sick joke. That brings him swiftly to anger. "Oh hell no" are the first words as he waves both hands in front of his face and leaning back into his chair. "This must be the most wrong thing you have EVER wanted me to do. Find the man put me in jail and left me there to rot. While the other Evolved had to deal with being drugged up in box train, you know what I had to do go through to taste freedom? Because of him?" The tone is filled with rage, but it still kept mute, mostly to avoid drawing unwanted attention. "The man that has taken advantage of at least one of my friends? This isn't going to require a good reason for me to even consider it, it's going to require the BIG DAMNEST REASON ON GOD'S GREEN EARTH, for me to even consider it."

Tracy almost twitches at the vicious denial from Gene, but instead, her expression hardens, intense lines of anger forming along her pretty features and cold anger building al too quickly in her own eyes. "He's not responsible," she forces out with absolute conviction. It doesn't even need to be denial; it's just the truth. "I'm sorry that you were in jail, I didn't know, but that's not my problem."

Realizing too late that those were not the best words to say to Gene, Tracy holds a hand up. "Ivory is trying to turn that operation around." Her tone takes on a further hush, intense. "You know that I was taken too, Gene. I went through hell because of the opinions of people in the government that I'm too dangerous to live outside of chains and heat lamps— but Ivory is different. He's smart. And, he cares. I swear to you he has his head on straight. How do you think I got out?! Ivory risked everything to give me my life back." Such as it is. "If he's out there somewhere…"

His tone gets even softer, but his words only become more heated. He leans in, his blue eyes firmly locked on Tracy's. "Oh, really? Because it sounds like the only thing that's changed is that it went from an all human operation to letting Evolved become sell-outs to their own kind. I've seen the lists, Tracy. I know you were taken, I was going to try and bust you out, remember? But why is it that he decided that you were worth saving? That Peter was worth saving… Yet there are still Evolved in there that aren't getting trials, am I right? Why is that?"

Tracy's blue eyes lock right back. "You sure have a lot of unjust hate for someone who thinks they're doing the right thing. You have to get your facts straight." She presses her lips together momentarily, tense, before going on intently. "He's doing what he can," she expresses with a nod of her head as she speaks. "He's not in control of the whole operation. Don't you get it? If he stops everything at once, it's all over. He's out and… none of us have a chance. It could get so much worse, Gene. Ivory almost lost his job getting me out've there, and I'm only allowed to walk around in the real world because I'm his responsibility now. If I do… one thing his superiors don't like… I have to go back." Leaning in, the ice queen looks as intense as she ever has: it's no wonder, then, that the table becomes coated in a sudden sheen of ice. It's the table itself freezing. The air around them becomes momentarily arctic. She notices, however, and brings her hand up quickly, temperatures gradually rising back up. "…I can't go back."

Gene watches the table freeze and go back to normal. His hands move off the table and to his side. Despite the accidental threat, Gene's 'tude remains calm. He seems ready to tear Tracy apart, but he takes a deeeeeep breath and begins conversation anew. "So I'm wrong. There are changes going on within Alpha Protocol for all Evolved, not just special exceptions for those that doing favors for the government or Ivory himself? If so, give me some proof. Anything… Bills being passed, letters from the White House. ANYTHING. Trust me, if there is truth behind it, I'll be able to find it."

"I'm sorry," Tracy mutters under her breath in regards to the accidental freeze, frustrated but mostly tired over the fact that it happened at all. She's sure to not touch much of anything now, her hand disappearing under the table. Before she replies, the woman gives a quick look around the restaurant to make sure no one saw. Aside from one staring toddler who can't speak full sentences, she seems to be safe. Back to Gene. "I assure you I can, but to do that I need Ivory," she insists. "Besides, if you're so worried about what he's up to, you'd think you'd wanna know where he is."

"Your need of Ivory has nothing to do with a government program, last I checked," Gene remarks, but he holds up a hand to silence Tracy's quips if they come. "It is true, I am interested to see what has happened to Wynn. It is possible that the Marilyn woman is trying to get rid of him. I don't pretend to know the politics of Alpha Protocol. But I do know this, Ivory is not my friend. I do not see him as my last best hope of regaining the life he destroyed. But, I will find him and if possible, return him back to Washington."

While Tracy is likely to have a pleasant reply to that, Gene again holds up the hand. "I will require something in return though. You have made it clear you don't wish a friendship. You have made it clear you do not have respect for me. Thus, this relationship has been solely one-sided. That's… Unhealthy for me and I don't think Gwen would enjoy sharing her mooch."

The words bring some relief, but it's put on hold. Tracy, to her credit, shuts up, though she does try to speak up a few times only to be silenced by Gene. By the end, her jaw is firm and she's studying the young genius rather coldly. "I'll be in your debt, I told you. Who's— Gwen?" She flashes an cheerless smile. "What're you getting at?"

"Another woman who asks too much and gives too little," Gene states as he gets up. Captain America wouldn't ask for personal favors… But Captain America is never taken for a PATSY. And what right would he have to be mad at Ivory for using women if he was able to force Tracy into something, however petty it might be? Gene's mind is again at war when he doesn't really have time to figure it out.

"I don't know what I'm getting at," Gene states as he rubs his head, using R2-D2 for support. "I'll give you a call if anything turns up. I might need to talk to you before it happens. If you think that the government is coming to take you away or will be soon, let me know and I'll kidnap you so you can be free without being in trouble."

"I dunno about kidnapping me, but… thank you for doing this." Even if Gene is right and Tracy is using him to get information, again, she sounds sincere. Tired, sure, and reluctant, but sincere. "Oh," she speaks up again suddenly. "I had some sources corroborate your theory — the one you said… through your… special delivery." There. She's giving back. Alright, it's for her own purposes, but she said she'd look into it and she did. "I've been told there might be chemical evidence. Thing is, I can't get myself tested — for what, I have no idea — without being red-flagged. I don't even know where I'd go for something like that. A private lab?"

Gene figured she would if only because it for was her own purposes. While Gene tries to do the right thing, he tries to balance it with logic… Of course, in times like this, it leads to the sorta choices he hates to make. Like this one. "A private lab would be the only way I could think of…" Gene sighs as he tries to figure out what's best. Elena is a good friend, but Cass has a baby. He doesn't want to endanger either of them. "I know someone with a lab. Let me clear it with her first, and we'll see what we can do." Gene looks around. He should get going. "If you have any more questions, here is a secure line… When you do call, if you need to leave a message, make it vague. No keywords. I'll see you around Tracy." After handing her a black business card from his pocket which has a written number on it, he walks out the door, R2-D2 following in close pursuit.

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