2007-08-06: DF: Do You Think We'll Make It?

Starring:

DFDaphne_icon.gif DFRudyard_icon.gif

Summary: A meeting in the reptile house. Bugs, snakes, and shall.

Dark Future Date: 6 AUGUST 2009

Do You Think We'll Make It?


Bronx Zoo Reptile House

Things have changed almost imperceptably since Daphne got the news of bio-warfare. Very few people are being let in and out of the zoo, though most people don't leave anyway, so this wasn't really ever a problem. There's more animal defense outside the zoo gate, too - literal snakes in the grass on the lookout for anyone who shouldn't be around. More birds are in the sky. Life continues as normal as it can.

There's a note left for Rudyard in the main office - 'Kipling - I'm in the reptile house - meet me there,' In Daphne's writing. It's one of the last enclosures that actually still houses animals. It's got a tropical environment, and while none of the animals are permanently caged, it's a good place for them to lve. The interior is humid and overgrown by now, which is just how the tenants like it. Daphne herself can be found in some undergrowth, picking up some eggs while a very large black mamba curiously watches. She has an idea, see, and these eggs are close to hatching…

—-

There would be more insects added to the mix at the zoo, except Rudyard's laying low. He doesn't want to add any fuel to the fire and get the zoo looked at by Homeland. Since returning from his stunt in Washington, he has been under self-imposed confinement at the zoo.. that and the insistence of his pleading wife. Not that he'll admit to bending under her pleas. Oh no, never. Keeping to the more interior areas of the zoo, away from the sight of outsiders, he feels more or less free to wander and work. Shortly following said wandering, he found his wife's note at the office and obliges her request by heading straight for the reptile house.

—-

There will be some critters in here to greet him. A lot of small insects, for one. Tree frogs, various varieties of iguana and snake. The black mamba who's observing Daphne's theft of her eggs briefly looks in Rudyard's direction. In all, there are eleven eggs carefully packed in a small plastic container, which will be incubated for another couple days until they hatch. Then? Well… Again, there is a plan.

Noting Rudyard's arrival, she stands. The mother snake is left with five eggs; not that she'll stick with them once they're hatched, but it gives her something to do. "Got a present for the Saints," she explains, nodding toward the container in her hands. What better weapon is there than a highly venomous infant snake concealed in your pocket? "No one's come looking for you yet."

—-

Rudyard doesn't mind the insects at all. In fact, they are quite free to settle upon his person if they please. And some do. Including a monstrous dragonfly that perches upon his head. Brows arching, he approaches Daphne. Her, the eggs, and the snake are given a curious look then an approving nod. "I see.. fight tyranny with nature… and you chastised me for such a thing." Despite dark future being dark, Rudyard's demeanor has change little. On the outside. "Excellent, that is a small relief." He doesn't state that it's just a matter of time.

—-

"Well, no. I think my exact words were," and she states this flatly, in monotone, "'Are you insane, you're attacking the god-damned president, you ass, what happened to a defensive war, what the hell are you doing.' Et cetera. This is different. This is like a get out of jail free card." Ah, Monopoly. So awesome to sit and play once upon a time. Leaning down for a moment, Daphne sets the box with the eggs on the foot path. "A small one. We have another problem, though. Some of the president's goons are in town, and they have a weapon."

—-

Rudyard flashes Daphne a rather fond smile for her words. "Ah, I stand corrected." Still smiling fondly, an affectionate kiss is pressed against Daphne's forehead. As she sets the eggs down and mentions the goons in town, he frowns and takes a step back. "What sort of weapon are those bastards using?"

—-

Smiling, she allows herself a moment to lean against Rudyard, a very small smile gracing her features. They rarely get moments to themselves anymore. By night, Daphne's so tired, they barely have time to chat before she's sound asleep across her pillow. One day, after all this is done and the world has won its freedom, they'll be able to just /talk/ again, and it'll be nice. For now, a hug stolen here and there will have to do. Unfortunately, business comes first at the moment. "Elena told me about an Evolved named Erin who's able to create disease. She gave one of the Saints SARS. They managed to contain it before there was an outbreak, thankfully. If this person gets to the zoo, though…" She doesn't need to finish that statement. It could be a disaster, essentially. "I know you've wanted to help with stuff around here. This could be right up your alley."

—-

Rudyard was just settling an arm around Daphne's waist too before his expression hardens. "I can fight fire with fire. Just say the word. I'll be certain to use insect borne diseases that won't spread into a pandemic if it can be helped." Already, he's considering his mental catalog of insects and the diseases they carry. A few well placed bites… Then his gaze drops to the eggs. "That, and you are prepared as well."

—-

"That's not quite what I was thinking." Unlike the Saints, unlike her husband, Daphne's not quite terrorist-level yet. But now that he mentions it… He can probably see the wheels turning behind her blue eyes as she meets his. "…They'll know you're in New York, but if it's a risk you want to take…" She's not going to stop him. And to be fair, they won't know who he is, just that he's here - whoever it was who attacked the White House. "No disease, though. We can't let innocents get caught in the crossfire if we can help it. Bees. Wasps. They talk to you, Kipling, we can use some eyes in the sky. No one's going to suspect a fly on the wall, you know?" Yes, she was thinking more 'subtle' than all-out war in retaliation, but Daphne can't sit here and honestly say that kicking ass isn't a good idea.

—-

Rudyard purses his lips and looks braced for an argument, but it quickly deflates. "Lice then. Annoying, and the worst they'll get is having to shave their heads." Somehow.. the thought of Petrelli's well groomed mane of hair having to be shaved causes a bubble of amusement to form. "Although, you do know how to put a damper on my fun. A few cases of encephalitis here and there.." Of course he can always sneak those in. Daphne'll never know he was the cause! "You heard the missus," he says as he raises a hand to the dragonfly still perched on his head. The large insect flies from his head to his hand, and there's a moment of eye to eyes contact before it buzzes off.

—-

She can often 'hear' something from the insects, but not enough to really get an idea of the conversations they might be having. Really, Daphne just can't master conversation on that level, though she can't doubt it exists. After all, with what Rudy's done…

"I'm not trying to ruin your fun, she says, giving his shoulder a shove. Almost playful, in fact. "I'm just trying to keep you safe. You stayed, so… I have to look out for you." And the rest of the people in the world who don't want to end up with a horrible disease because of a little teeny tiny accident. A miscalculated attack could lead to an outbreak, and one disease-causing entity is enough. Lice, though? There's just the slightest curl of her lip at that. "…I ever tell you I'm glad you're on our side?"

—-

Rudyard smirks at the playful shove then turns to cup a hand to Daphne's chin. "I know that luv.. and we must look after each other. Not one side more than the other." Y'know, that whole thing where they took their vows and partnered up for life. "Hmmm.. and no. I don't think I've had the pleasure of hearing those words escape from you until just now." He drops his hand from his wife's chin, and mischief shines in his eyes, "How about a plague of bedbugs in their hotels?"

—-

Vows. It's amazing to think they got this far after their first meeting; he takes her chin, she reaches for his hand. Sometimes affection is hard to come by, though Daphne can't think of a better place for it than here, SURROUNDED BY VENOMOUS SNAKES or something. As she looks at him, though, she wonders if he really lightened up for her, or if she just got used to all his properness. Maybe a combination of both. The answer comes a moment later… And she laughs, gently headbutts his chest, and wraps her arms around him. "As long as it's not contagious, you have a go." Bedbugs, non-vector mosquitos might be fun, fleas, ticks. "I think it'd be amazing if they woke up covered in spider web, myself."

It's her responsibility, though, to add, "Just make sure they can't track you back here. I know you'll be careful, but take as many precautions as you can." Stepping back, she reaches for his hand again. "You think we'll all make it through this, Rudyard?"

—-

Rudyard's expression sobers when Daphne headbutts his chest and can no longer see his face. Despite this, his arms wrap around her in a firm embrace. Perhaps it is a mixture of both.. or maybe he found someone just as insane and detached from humans in general as he. "Consider it done. Think of it as an anniversary gift or such." The spiderwebs that is. Because, it's so happening. With anti-Petrelli messages too if it can be managed. "That I shall. I shall scarper off while your back is turned before I would willingly endanger your sanctuary." As for that last question, it has him falling silent and staring off at a distance speck. "Don't be ridiculous. Of course we will," is the response that follows his pause.

—-

Worry colours her face while he can't see it, either… Brows drawing down, she presses her lips together, but this doesn't last long before she's meeting his eyes again. Shall. Shall, shall, shall. Daphne used to think it was annoying, now— She still thinks it's annoying, but it's all part of the charm, right? "Too bad we'll never see the look on their faces when they wake up," she says, managing a smile. Did he just say 'scarper'?

A lot isn't being voiced between them - she can tell. They both do things every day that could get them killed. Any of the Saints could end up dead. People in the zoo have already lost their lives… Death happens. That's just how it is. And while she has to believe that it could never happen to her, just to keep herself going, and it can't happen to Rudy because she loves him too much, it's always something that's looming. With the reassurance, though, she gives his hand a squeeze, lets it go, then bends to pick up the snake eggs. "Let me know what you're doing, just… So— I just like to know."

—-

"Alright, I shall do that." There. Rudyard said it again. Most likely because he knows it annoys Daphne. Still, it's the little things. "Come along then, let's get those eggs to wherever it is you are taking them, and then.. you.. are going to have a nice lie down." Because he said so, and will not accept arguments. "Upon which time I will impart to you my dastardly plans of terrifyingly evil proportions," is said with such dry sincerity, he can only be joking. Somewhat.

—-

Yeah, yeah. They never quite got over that antagonism, and they never will. Oh, well. "Incubator in the office. I want to try to be with them when they hatch. Reptiles are hard enough to imprint on for me. These are going to belong to people who can't talk to them." And so she wants to stress from their earliest age that the person they're assigned to is not for biting.

Wait. Rest? It looks as if she's about to protest, but it dies before it's stated. She could use a good nap, and she doesn't have it in her to argue. "Fine, fine. Crikey." …Every once in awhile, that old accent resurfaces, even if she's certain she's got it mastered. Just an old battle scar. "But if I'm sleeping, you're going to have to feed the bears." And there will be no arguments on that, either.

—-

"Who said anything about sleeping?" is Rudyard's ever so innocent response.. and that's all he has to say on the matter as he ushers his not so blushing bride back towards the offices.

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