2009-10-05: Building 26 In Level 1



Date: October 5th, 2009


The Company interrogates the government agents taken by Benjamin and Meryl, using some handy and invasive tactics.

"Building 26 in Level 1"

Level 1 — Company Headquarters

New York

It's no Level 5. No, this cell is located right in the Company Headquarters, but it does an excellent job of keeping prisoners all the same. The three grey walls and the thick glass window should be familiar, as it's nearly identical to the others created by the Company. The window, however, is smaller.

It's too crowded. Two men, dressed in black, their anonymous masks long since removed, have been contained in this room and are sitting nervously on the cot affixed to the wall. They're not medicated, and they're unrestrained, but they're very closely watched. Angela Petrelli stands at a distance, arms crossed, her suit of dark brown tweed and black skirt cutting a striking figure. There's a steely, resigned-to-what-must-be-done look about the woman. Behind her is the silent, imposing (and armed) figure of the Haitian. And there's another— a man who she speaks to now. "We can begin in a moment."

Angela steps closer. It's the two non-Company agents she addresses this time. "We're going to find out what your purpose is," she says calmly, matter-of-factly. "It won't hurt. I know you're very loyal to whatever your cause is, but as are we. It will be better, for you, if you don't fight."

The instructions have been very clear. Benjamin is to have no part in the interrogation process, seeing as it would be too personal. That's fine by him, he's content to stand out in the hallway on the other side of the glass. Arms folded across his chest, his expression is on the unreadable side as he quietly watches the proceedings. He's curious as to why these goons attacked first without provocation. At least before, the Company gave him some warning.

Taking in a slow breath, Peter doesn't look nearly as imposing as the tall black man near him. Or even the tiny woman with the stern voice. But he's not really there to look intimidating. He's clear on his job, and it's simple. A glance is cast toward the Haitian, mildly aware that he'll be needed for after and not during, before he takes a step closer to get just behind his mother. "It would have been better if they… weren't together." A hand raises up, like a gesture to stay away, but he's actually preparing to push them against a wall if he has to. Not to hurt them… But to keep them from possibly hurting each other.

"We need to know everything you know about your last mission. Who you work for, what you knew about the mission. Everything." There's a pause, before he decides to focus in on the one who looks older, eyes narrowing, head twitching to the side. They don't need to talk when he can go into their minds. But for the record… since there's someone interested watching… he sends a thought at that one.

Tell us everything about your last mission.

Folded arms progress into hands clasped in front of her as Angela takes a step back from the operation. Her gaze is no less watchful from this distance, no less hawk-like. It does veer away from Peter and the mystery men for a moment, however; a glance is given to Benjamin. It's dark; sharp; warning.

And then the older man starts talking. "We had a target," he says outloud of his own will. He looks like he's seen some things in his day; he can't be beyond 45, but he's grizzled, strong. Suddenly, his brow wrinkles and he finds himself spitting out words. "The threat— was Benjamin Winters, age 42, ability: sleep inducing…" The man squints at Peter, unsure what's going on. Why the hell am I saying this? "An American— we located him in Greece and tracked him to the island of Ithaki. Orders to contain and return to the States."

Benjamin frowns and he takes a step closer to the glass without realizing it. Threat? Him? Well, he was before he could control his powers. Now? He could be, if he chose to do nefarious things with his ability. The same could be said for any power as it could be said for a gun, a knife, hammer, etc. When Angela looks his way, he meets her gaze with a nod. He's staying put, and quiet. Winters doesn't want to cross Mrs. Petrelli again.

The hand remains raised, a precaution more than anything else. Peter hears the man talking, hears him thinking, and is very much aware that this sounds much like what he thought it would sound like. Benjamin Winters wasn't a threat so much as a man with an ability. The children taken weren't threats either, as far as he could tell. They weren't going to blow up a city, or sink an island. "Whose orders were you following? Who sanctioned the mission? Where did you get your information regarding Benjamin Winters' ability?"

Angela's head raises a pinch, dark, perceptive eyes narrowing. She does not look surprised, nor does she look impressed. Behind her, the Haitian's impassive features almost seem to glower.

The man whose mind is being searched and whose words are being oiled has a very simple answer for those listening. Two words. "Alpha Protocol."

Benjamin's mouth sets into a grim line as he digests the information that's coming forth. Alpha protocol? That's pretty darn military lingo-wise. He looks as if he wants to shake further explanation from the two spooks, but he stays put. Angela will have his liver for breakfast if he ticks her off.

"What is Alpha Protocol?" Peter asks, still keeping a firm eye on both of them, just in case. He's paying attention to nothing else except the two men, with most of his focus on one of them. "And where in the United States were you going to take Benjamin Winters once you acquired him?"

The older man's younger counterpart watches him with a nervous air, no doubt brought on by his colleague's sudden penchant for honesty. It doesn't let up. He answers Peter. "Our prime directive is to investigate and neutralize any and all threats to America's soil," the man recites almost mechanically, his words coming quicker than he can stop them. "Winters was to be transported to— " he grunts, trying not to speak. "Building 26." Washington, the thought speeds out.

Behind the group, Angela's statuesque poise falters, her eyes widening on an instinctual level usually kept at bay. Something has shocked the Petrelli matriarch to her core — even scared her. "It can't be," she breathes in a rattling whisper. "It's happening again."

Benjamin glances at the man that's spilling these little secrets and his scowl darkens. Neutralizing threats? It sounds like any /perceived/ threat or anyone with the slightest possibility. At least the Company went after honest to goodness threats and criminals. Before he can slip too far into his own thoughts, Angela's expression has his attention. That can't be good.

Trying to maintain focus on the men hasn't been difficult, until his mother's words attract his attention away. Peter breaks off contact, glancing back, with his hand still raised, "Mom?" It's not an interrogation for her, so he avoids asking right now, but the questioning look is on his face. He knows that the Company was founded for a reason, to keep abilities from coming out. And he knows what happened in one future when it did… "The Building is in Washington," he says after a moment, for the record. But they don't know where in Washington.

Looking back at the two men, he hesitates a moment before asking, "What's the address of this building?" They may not know what it is exactly, but he can hope. "Is this where you take all the threats?"

Angela has gone quiet. Her features have become stonier and her hand remains flattened against her chest, over the neat, polished buttons of her ladies' suit jacket; if she has more to explain, she's not doing so here and now.

"It's uhh— " The man struggles to recall. The image of the building in his head is clear, but the address… "D street. E street— maybe 4th street," he eventually blurts out. "Maybe. I don't know, alright, we just take them in. You're holding us against the law!" he then growls. Irony? "You'll be arrested!"

Benjamin is definitely liking this less and less. Considering he didn't have warm and fuzzy feelings before, that's saying something. Winters looks as if he's about to say something, but he restrains himself. "Funny, that's what you were going to do to me, and have done to who knows how many others," he mutters aloud before he can help himself. There's even a derisive snort accompanying his words. What in the honey nut clusters is going on here.

"I think they'd want to take us in for a lot more than holding you against your will," Peter says quietly, looking serious for a moment before he looks back at his mother. "Anything else you need out of them?"

"No," Angela answers, decisive. Her arms fold once more. She may have been shaken, but there's little evidence of it now, though Peter may be able to see it more than the others that she's still affected. A cold anger surrounds the woman— more than usual. "I believe we know all we have to." A dark eye rolls toward the Haitian, a signalling glance and nod.

He steps around her and appears next to Peter, looming in, at the ready.

At Angela's pronouncement, Benjamin backs off, and walks away. He's got work to return to. When there's a plan of action, it'll go out to designated agents. Ben's not happy with the waiting game, and it sounds like everyone's in danger, but he'll wait for orders.

"All right," Peter says, looking back at them and finally letting his hand drop. If anyone can handle two military guys, it's the Haitian. "Thank you for your time, gentlemen," he adds, even if he doesn't really mean it.

The last thing the government agents see for tonight is the spread hand of the Haitian moving toward their heads.

Angela leaves them be. She's quite familiar with this part of the process, she doesn't need to see it. "There's something I have to do," is all she says before excusing herself from the cell and disappearing down the corridor.

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