2010-07-06: Everybody's Fine



Date: July 6th, 2010


He really is the worst tool.

"Everybody's Fine"

Streets of New York

The shadows of the alley that Sam Wright finds himself in are good for hiding and various criminal dealings. The FBI agent dressed in his blue jeans and black leather coat blends here, especially among the addicts and drug dealers. Stepping to the corner along with some of his seedier associates he reaches into his jacket and reaches in to take out a bunch of cash for his drug cocktail of choice.

"Haven't seen ya 'round much lately, man," Mouse quips as he leans against the side of a building.

"Ehn. Ya know how it is. A guy doesn't need his fix…" pause. "…until he does," Sam shoots the other man a slick smile. But the smile only lasts a few moments as some rather odd music begins to play. "What the hell?"

The pair of men peek about the alley for the source of the music.

Here we go!??

That's it!

Just tap your feet and clap your hands

Come on everybody

It's the Hamster Dance!

Once the song reaches that particular lyric, Sam realizes something— the music is coming from his pocket. It's his phone. A blank stare is sent to Mouse who is virtually cracking up until Sam kicks him hard against the wall and steps out of the alley before finally answering as deadpan and collected as possible, "Wright here.'

"Yes, you are~"

The answering voice is cheerful in its inflection, but perhaps not so much as this voice usually sounds. Even despite that, imagining the phone going off, a bit of an untainted smile has tugged Laurie's lips up and away from the look of concentration he'd previously been gifting the situation of papers in his lap.

Spread currently on the front seat of a much unremarkable Accord, the consultant's head rests back to the driver's window as his legs prop against the handle of the door on the opposite side. His phone, half-responsible for that particularly unique sound that Sam's made, is sat upon his chest where it relays everything via the speaker option with a slight crackle and suggestion of distance.

As fingers play with the edge of the report in front of him, his thumb smoothly underlines the address — it's already been memorized — but it's important. A warehouse.

That smile drifts away from his face, but not his voice: "But are you presentable?"

"Ehn. Miles," While Laurie's tone might have been cheerful, Sam's is more annoyed than upbeat, and certainly more hostile than warm. He leans against one of the more legitimate buildings just shy of the dark alley itself, gnawing on his bottom lip as he peeks down the alley, Mouse trying to catch his gaze. With a shake of his head and a raise of his hand, he paces away.

In response to the question he can't help but grin rather forcibly, even if Laurie can't see it, he has a role to play, "Ain't I always?" He scuttles down the sidewalk, putting more distance between him and the dealer, and rounding a corner into a slightly more legitimate part of town.

"What's up? Got somethin' fer me? Or ye blown that deep cover 'o yers?" His eyes narrow into mildly suspicious slits. "Wasn't sure they'd be cool with the whole patchwork quilt face y'know…"

"Wright, Wright," that oppositional brightness continues fluidly into Laurie's measured 'tsking' inside the agent's name, "Always so quick to assume the worst of me." There's a corresponding ruffle when he resettles the papers, snapping one to attention in order to get it to stand upright as he holds. Blue eyes absorb the listed details, making numbered measurements seem to rise from the paper itself to form clear, dimensional structures in his mind. He counts the number of doors. Flashing red markers label out all the most popular places to hide an alarm, a camera.

He can recall just now the working manuals for at least a dozen kinds of either one.

But the phone, reminds some part of his brain. The sounds of Sam and his phone changing slightly as he moves about. His breaths; he's walking. With a purpose. "Sorry to disappoint you," he pipes up, "But I can look like Raggedy Ann, as long as I don't hit like her." There's a bit of a humming noise through his lips, one closing better than the other thanks to the mentioned patchworks. "No," and he adjusts, beginning to sit up with a scuffle of movement, shoes scraping against car material, "But you're going to have company. Of the gentler variety on two counts, thus the presenting. The other one, well. I think you two will make quite an impression on each other."

Sam steps even a little faster, the breath into the phone louder and more ragged, he's making time to get away from where he was to be where he isn't. His feet pound the pavement between their rather slow conversation. Wright wrinkles his nose and shakes his head, "Wait. What?! What're ya talkin' 'bout? If this 'bout those civilians 'gain not worth blowin' yer cover— what yer doin' is more important— "

He steps down a set of stairs to the subway station where he then assumes a seat on the bench. The phone remains pressed to his ear as he sits back and sighs heavily. "What's goin' on— "

No more curiosity than instinct, an ever pressing attentiveness in his mind, sends Laurie after the cues in Sam's surroundings. Tunnel. Underground. The distinctive ring and rumble as a car rolls into the station. A map of New York comes to the forefront, all those pretty colored train lines and their distances. "You know that if this call cuts out, I'm only going to have to ring you all over again."

His lips press as though to whistle, but he delays the idea, instead fully sitting up as his hand goes to his lap to catch the phone as it falls with a light smack into his palm. A beep off of speaker. The piece is raised to his ear as he glances sideways out the windshield. There, several feet away, a brick building.

"I went with you this far, Sam Wright, because I strive to be an easy-going person, but I'm just not feeling it anymore. I'm not. So, yes, what I'm doing is important. Which is why you're going to receive them with all the comfort they're due."

"I'm not hoppin' a train 'til after we're done talkin'," he says irritably, yes, he's already annoyed although why is wholly unclear.

Still irritated Sam just rolls his eyes. "Look, we've been through this— the higher ups don't approve, they want you tah be able tah do yer thing and stay in there! If you git caught the entire mission is dead in the water!" He shifts on the bench, resting his free arm on the back as one foot rests on the other knee. Biting his bottom lip he finally manages the most important part, "Mason ain't gonna like it. Why? Why now? They'd been fine, cooped up, but fine— and it's not like there's bin ransom for 'em…" Because there hasn't.

There's a narrowing in Laurie's features that Sam gets to miss thanks to his being miles away in a subway station. In the background of his thoughts, the minutes between trains coming in continues to count by rhythmically, the announcer's voice chiming in for each destination. A position is triangulated merely by habit. But as the consultant's eyes narrow, that smile beginning to become something more sickeningly dry than pleasant, his tone lifts even lighter. Carefree.

"Perhaps it's my terrible old age, but it's just too distracting now. Hostages, doing my thing. I'm sure you clever agents will think of something better for them. And don't worry, I'll still be sending you a Christmas card." Pause. A thoughtful rub at his jaw. "Things are different now. Roberto. His patterns have changed. He's going to go off, soon, all that anger on the first obvious target. And the less civilians there for that roulette… is a game I'd rather play."

A tightening of his jaw as Sam so loosely pronounces the hostages — all of whom Laurie can envision in that cramped cell, in constant fear, one in bruises — 'fine'. A mere miniscule curve up makes a smile into a smirk, evident across the phone. "Are you fine, Sam Wright?" It's a question asked as though the answer is known. Like a chance. For one to confess guilt to lessen the sentence.

But the moment passes by; "Something's gonna give, agent", timed to the whistling of the next car as it pulls up before heading to its next stop: somewhere Sam isn't, but might want to be.

"Oops," says Laurie, pulling the phone away from his ear contentedly, his eyes already moving away to where he has to go next. "Looks like you're cutting out already." End call.

No confession is uttered and none is going to be given, particularly now that the line has gone dead. "Shit," Sam murmurs before rising from the bench and glancing at the train only to shake his head and walk up those stairs. If he's having one of those days, he's going to need his fix. With heavy footed steps he murmurs to himself before dialling a different number. "Wright calling. Look, the asset is getting the hostages out— we're gonna need to have a contingency plan. Get Witness Protection mobilized… he doesn't listen… but… whatever…. yes, sir." Now it's Sam's turn to hang up as he finishes climbing those stairs.

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