2010-02-09: Doin' The Research



Date: February 9, 2010


The trio in Fred's apartment try to get the research finished to collect evidence.

"Doin' The Research"

Fred's Apartment — Brooklyn

It's been a few weeks, and the research has admittedly been fairly slow for the trio. While Sydney and Jamie have been a bit more successful in finding information, Fred has had to admit that he hasn't been as much of a help. It's not that he doesn't want to be of help, of course, but he's had a lot on his mind (besides that of his work at the community centre and the Manhattan Psychiatric Institution). He has other matters that have been a detriment to him…matters that he has not been free to speak of with the other two, even if he had an inkling that he really wanted to! It's been hard for him. He's been torn between his professional life and his personal, and it's been eating at him.

Having gotten even braver over the last few weeks, Sydney has ventured outside not fully goth geared (she left the fake baby and makeup off today) and returns with several bags of photocopied articles; things that might be useful. But the research is far from over. Many of these missing people are likely just that: missing people, not people with abilities absorbed by the government to off them all in some kind of cleansing holocaust. "Huzzah! More progress!" Quickly she unzips her coat. "We win life!" she beams. Ironically, unlike Fred, if anything, Syd's come out of her shell the last few weeks. She seems more and more like her old self; the one before she even met Bryce, the optimistic good natured teenaged girl from high school.

Bright eyed, she hangs up her coat and then lugs the bags of photocopied news papers over to the coffee table where she unloads them and squints through them. It's moments like these she wishes she had reading glasses to magnify the small print. Before she settles in, however, she pads over to the kitchen and preps a pot of coffee; it's going to be a long afternoon and night. So much for giving it up.

The sweet aroma of the Arabica beans fills the air of the apartment, and once it's done brewing, she takes two mugs from the cabinet and preps them both, the first with nothing more than a little bit of milk — her golden standard. And the second completely black. She picks up both cups (which really, can only spell dOOm for the world's number one coffee spiller) and pads to Fred's home office to rap on the door before peeking in and leaving the cup of black coffee on the edge of a filing cabinet before ducking into the hall again.

Jamie when Sydney comes in, is on the back of Fred's couch. She's upside-down, in fact, hand-walking along it. By this point, this is probably neither shocking nor worrying. She does stuff like this all the time, and really, she is really good. She's sometimes not got her moves just right, but she's never fully fallen, always able to land properly. She flips, more like a cartwheel, back to standing, and then hops back down off the couch to follow Sydney over to Fred's office, and asks, excitedly, "What'd you find?"

Fred looks up as a knock comes at his office door, having not noticed the previous return of Sydney. Such is being stuck in your work all day long. He smiles. "Thanks." He says, standing and heading over to grab his coffee. He takes a long sip, letting out a sigh once he's drunk it. "Just what I needed." He says, heading out into the other parts of his apartment to talk to Sydney and Jamie. "So, what's the word? Find anything new or interesting?"

Sydney turns on her heel to grin broadly at Jamie, leading the way back to the couch. "Well," she grins, "I have the missing persons records for the last year — for children, anyways. They're public access." She grins broadly. "Along with that just some general information and stuff on…" her stomach churns as her lips flicker into a momentary frown, "…former Senator Ivory Wynn. His speeches, his initiatives, and any place he was photographed over the last year. It's a lot of information and is going to take a long time to wade through, but I think we'll be able to find something useful in his old speeches and the like." She knows he was involved with this; all too well. She extracts a bunch of the photocopies from the bag, and her nose wrinkles involuntarily as his photo along with an article about his terrorist-policy sits on the top. Promptly, she flips it upside down. "This is weeks of work. Weeks. But I think it'll be worth it in the end…"

Jamie follows Sydney back to the couch, eyes widening a little as she says how much work is going to be involved. "Wow, this takes forever! Isn't there some evidence out there that's easy to get?" She plops down on the couch, looking at the papers.

Fred shakes his head, hearing almost everything that Sydney says. "Wow…well, research does take time, doesn't it?" He smiles at Jamie. "I wish it were that simple. But, to get good evidence that can be used, it's hard to find. But that just makes it better when we do find it!" He says with a little nod. "Is there anyway I can help right now? I mean…I've just been staring at charts and notes all day long. I could use a break from work."

"It does! And there are no shortcuts, I'm afraid. Unless we get in touch with some of my friends," this task has been really hard considering Sydney left her cellphone at Amy's house. Amy, who is likely freaking out that her formerly-blonde friend hasn't contacted her. Syd pushes the thought out of her head. "But for now, all we have is book work." She shrugs a little. "Welllll… I think what we need to do is divide the missing person's cases into categories. With missing kids it's complicated because a lot of the time it's one parent or the other than disappears with said child. What we're interested in are cases where no parents are connected to the missing child."

She nods at Fred, "You could just sift through and see which of the news magazines actually have quotations from Iv — Wynn. I want direct quotations only. Anything that's hearsay about him is relatively useless at this point…"

Jamie shakes her head a bit to Sydney and says, "Not always. When I got took, they took Saul too. He's my foster dad. Anybody who has a power they'll take, and lotsa families have powers together." She's never mentioned her family having any power, but she says this as if she knows, so one of them probably does/did.

Fred gives a little nod to Sydney. "That I can do. Gotta be easier than writing a doctoral thesis." He says with a hollow chuckle. It's at least something that Sydney knows all too well about. He tilts his head at Sydney. "Families have powers? Interesting." Oh, very interesting indeed. Perhaps if the fact that there are abilities ever get out into the public in his life time, he'll write a paper about that.

Sydney hmmms again, "In those cases though, wouldn't the person file a missing persons report for both? What I meant was… when couples are having troubles and one parent suspiciously takes a kid…" She frowns slightly though, "So… one of my parents was probably like me? Huh." Sometimes she wishes she knew something about him; anything, but wishing is empty in a way. Instead, she clucks her tongue and offers a weak smile, "Well, we should all be glad Nana doesn't have any, she'd probably find a way to take over the world," or at least control Syd's life.

"After everything's sorted there's even more work though, you know… From there we'll do some ground work." Some real detective work. Visitations seem to be on the menu. "Look I know it seems superfluous to have so much information, but how are we supposed to find evidence any other way? All we need is an inquiry into the treatment of prisoners and at least pieces of the project will be shut down. It should buy people like us more time…"

Jamie nods quickly to Sydney and says, "Uh-huh! Probably." She grins, and looks up to Fred, "I think most people who got powers got parents with powers too. Dunno for sure, though." She looks back to the work and says, "But that could still take a long time, couldn't it? Can't we start with what we have now?"

Fred starts sifting through the papers on the coffee table to find anything on Wynn. "Let's see here…" He looks up at Sydney. "Well, I guess we're lucky some people don't have abilities, eh?" But then, there are some people who have abilities who probably shouldn't, so it all evens out in the end. "Well, who knew that there was so much to know about people with abilities?" He grins.

"Well it's not that simple, but maybe? I'm hesitant to go to even a human rights staffer at the United Nations to ask questions. We just don't know how far all of this goes. Don't worry Jamie, we're making progress." Sydney winks at the girl. "I know it seems slow, but believe me, we're doing this as fast as we can while still being under the radar. I could get this information a lot easier if I used police resources, but I'm not exactly okay to go back there right now…" Wait. Morgana had always been a good friend at the station AND she was a records specialist. Maybe she'd be willing to help? Syd stores the idea in her memory.

"We can try to contact your lawyer friend with what we have and maybe…" George Dawson. "…I have a political contact sensitive to our cause, I'll get in touch. There's a lot of stuff to cover." Her grin broadens. "But Jamie, this is good. This is amazing. With some blood sweat and tears, I think we can do this! I know we can!" Total optimist, "We just need to figure out exactly what's going on and who's responsible, you know?" Beat. "Right Fred?" yes, she's looking for support. She winks at Jamie before reaching for another missing person's article, but as she does so, she hmmms again.

Jamie looks a little downcast at the talk of so much work ahead still, but brightens as Sydney mentions contacting Jane. "Ok! She'll keep it quiet, buts he's good at this… paper stuff." A slight wrinkle of the nose shows just how little Jamie seems to like it.

Fred doesn't pay attention to most of the conversation now. In fact, he's concentrating on the task before him. His eyes flit quickly between the various articles about Ivory Wynn, looking for statements of his. Though it's counterintuitive and despite the fact that Sydney told him otherwise, he looks at everything. First hand accounts of what Wynn said as well as second and third hand accounts, as well as reading about the man's actions. He only looks up when Sydney speaks to him. "Hmmm? Oh yeah, totally. We'll get it all figured out."

Sydney hmmms as a knowing grin spreads over her lips. "Maybe you should go the roof and practice your tricks?" she suggests, "I know you won't get hurt," the girl can turn to water, "and aren't aiming to hurt yourself now. And it seems like a safe-ish place… just acrobatics though, right?" She winks again. This whole maternal stuff has come far more naturally than she'd thought it would. In fact, in just a few short weeks, she's become attached to her former patient. And there's a pause before she adds, "Wear a coat though! It's cold!" A glance is given to Fred before she takes a long sip of coffee. Irony of all ironies, amongst the chaos of being a fugitive, she's found an unusual sense of calm. And in this moment… she shares it with the world.

Jamie grins at Sydney's words and says, "Ok!" Far more happy about that prospect, she runs to get her coat, pulling it on. "I can't wait until it warms up again! It's so hard to do stuff with a coat."

Fred chuckles and shakes his head. "You and your acrobatics! You'd think you were meant for the circus or something!" Was that just a random mention by Fred, or does he perhaps know more about Jamie than he cares to let on? Find out next time in the hit new series, 'Fred's Brain'. "Before you head out there, though, be sure to take the key! I don't want you to accidentally get locked up on the roof!" He says, heading to one of the drawers in the kitchen that has a bowl full of keys. Finally returning, he hands the roof door key to Jamie. "Don't loose that, now, you hear?"

Jamie's excitement is met with a broad grin from Sydney. "Have fun! And if you need anything, just come grab us. And…" she tacks the last one on for good measure, "be careful." She takes another sip of her coffee before picking up the photocopies again and then shooting Fred a half-suspicious glance. That seems weird. What a random thing to say, of course, Jamie likes to talk, it's not wholly impossible that she told him. Instead of saying anything about it, she just hmms and glances through one of the missing persons reports.

Jamie nods quickly to Fred with a grin, "I'm from a circus! And gonna be in one again, someday. I'll be the most famous acrobat in the world, someday." She takes the key seriously and nods quickly to Fred, "Promise, I won't lose it!" Waving, she turns to head to the door and out to head for the roof.

Fred tilts his head. "Really? Wow…I did not know that. No wonder you're so good at all this! I bet you got tons and tons of practice when you were in the circus before!" He grins widely. "I bet you'll be so famous that the other acrobats will want to be more like you!" He says with a firm nod. "Now, go have fun!" He smiles and turns to Sydney. "What a wonderfully energetic young girl."

And now that's weird. "How … how did you know …" Sydney tilts her head. It's not really suspicious, but it's certainly curious. "How did you deduce she was int he circus?" She narrows her eyes a bit, but an intrigued smile plays on her lips. "I just thought she'd told you earlier…" but apparently she hadn't. "And yes, Jamie's got lots of energy, and she deserves more than walls. I just hope we — I mean I — " her face flushes, she's dragged him far enough into this "can find a way to help her be safe and have some measure of freedom."

Fred shakes his head. "I didn't. Just…seeing her do her acrobatics all the time made me think of the stuff people do in the circus and all. Nothing more than that." Or is it? He puts on a bright smile. "But I guess, since she was previously in the circus…this all kinda comes together, doesn't it?" He shrugs. "Besides, sometimes my genius intuits things without me even realizing it." He says with a playful wink. "Don't worry…some day she'll be free to frolic. If anyone can find a way, it'll be you."

"I hope so. And it's not just for her. Kids Fred, they took kids. I can't even process that. It's been weeks since I really believed it, and I still can't process it. Can you imagine a train full of drugged up children?" Sydney suppresses a shudder. "And I guess that's true, my ability works without my help all of the time. Your genius is what makes you super-human, my friend." And then she adds more to her coffee than anything else, "Some people don't need to have an ability to be extraordinary." Her cheeks flush a pale pink, but her eyes remain fixed on the articles in front of her.

Fred shakes his head. "I know. It's hard to believe. I know you don't want to believe it, but…it's…if it's really happening, something needs to be done." Even he is starting to believe again that they shouldn't be holding people who haven't actually done anything wrong. With each passing day and with each memory slowly coming back, he's starting to remember what he believed before joining the AP. He's starting to remember about what he did for the Company. He blushes at Sydney's compliment toward him. "That's sweet of you to say, Sydney." Did he mention already that he had a long lost sister?

"Well it's true. Normal people don't just open up their homes. And you're like the smartest person I've ever met. Those things combined make you at least as extraordinary as me, if not moreso." Sydney shrugs after saying this before her gaze flits to him. A mischievous, teasing smile plays on her lips, "Jamie though. Well she's a different ball park of extraordinary. You'd have to like… save babies from a burning building to even try matching her mad skillz."

Fred shrugs and shakes his head. "Well…it was nothing, really. I mean…really. I'm sure other people would open up their homes. It's nothing special." He smiles shyly. "And really…I don't think I can match you when it comes to being extraordinary. Yeah, I'm smart. Yeah, I graduated near the top of my class at Columbia. But brilliance…intelligence…they're nothing compared to what your braveness. You've given up any chance you had at a regular life to help Jamie and to help fight this."

"It took months to come to that decision. And a second to actually make it," Sydney shrugs before reaching out to give his shoulder a quick squeeze before standing to her feet and padding towards the kitchen to get more coffee. She leans against the doorway, however, "And I'm not brave." In fact she sighs fleetingly, "I'm terrified. I'm terrified of a government that can do this to its people. I'm terrified of what will happen if this doesn't stop. And I'm terrified of what they could be doing to people like me. It's hard to imagine a government that would lock someone like me away. I mean… I don't think I'm ever hurt anyone with my ability — not that I know of, anyways." She hmmms before tilting her head, "I'm going to make more coffee. Bring you some when it's done." Her lips curl into a soft smile before she turns around back to the kitchen.

Fred shakes his head. "But…but you're doing this despite you fear of the government. It's amazing. It really is." He nods firmly. He smiles then. "I'm gonna take these articles about Wynn to my office. Be sure to let me know if you need me at all."

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