2007-04-17: In-Flight Call


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Sometime after the events at Yankee Stadium — between interrogation and going to visit Samantha — Namir gets another phone call from Erica. They both conclude that the suicides were the work of one man and agree to begin a search for him.

Date It Happened: April 17th, 2007

In-Flight Call

Somewhere on the Street

PHONE: Your phone begins to ring. The Caller ID says 283-8723.
PHONE: You answer your phone, "Dayan."

PHONE: Erica says, "Officer Dayan. Captain Snow on this end. Hey, there was something weird about all that, beyond the mass suicides. Just as I was calling you the first time, I got hit with a wave of anger, a desire to do something like… jumping off the building."

PHONE: Namir sounds very worn-out on his end: ragged, haggard, and overall just not up to his usual pep and pickup. He utters a low "mm-hmm", but doesn't offer too much else for a moment. Then a simple, "I know" supplements the intonation.

PHONE: Erica is silent for a long moment, assessing the tone of his voice, perhaps, finally breaking the quiet with a simple statement. "You don't seem up to talking at the moment, Officer. May I try tomorrow, and hope you can share more?"

PHONE: Namir says, "Mmm, no, it's … fine. I am just a little tired." There's an understatement. He does make an effort to sound a little less like a half-dead man and, after taking in a deep breath and releasing it, he continues on: "There was something odd going on there today, but if I tell you what I saw, you must swear that you will not tell anyone."

PHONE: Erica says, "Of course, Officer. This is a two way road. We each have things we don't want exposed to the public."

PHONE: Namir sighs again, pauses, hesitates, before he finally speaks again: "There was a man there. He had a string of paper dolls — the sort you would cut out of folded paper in grade school, they have … they are all joined at the hands and feet. He was in a Yankees cap, an older man. Whenever he tore a doll from the string, one of the people would jump. I … I think he was controlling them all. Somehow." Something in his voice would indicate that there might be more to it, but there's no immediate continuance.

PHONE: Erica sounds mildly surprised. "That… sounds like some variation of the voodoo myths, Officer, the whole thing about sticking a pin into a doll representation of a person and that person feeling the effects." More silence, as if she were trying to wrap her mind around it, before she remarks "But then, given what I do and you do, I've got to entertain the possibility voodoo isn't just myth and legend."

PHONE: Namir says, "As I told you when I ran into you the other night: nothing really surprises me anymore." There's a short pause again. "One of my teammates shot two civilians — unarmed civilians. He had no business opening fire, and I know him: he /would not/ have opened fire without a good reason, not unless he was being controlled in some way. He is very likely going to lose his job over this, and I— " Namir bites off the end of the sentence. It doesn't have a resolution."

PHONE: Erica says, "I think soon I'll say the same, Officer. I… I stayed on the street and tried to help clear the area of people. I hope my commander doesn't find out, I've no desire to be court-martialed. Your teammate… I don't know what to really say there. It doesn't sound like there'll be any evidence of influence to explain things medically they can be treated for and return to the job."

PHONE: Namir says, "No, there wouldn't be. I don't even think that they arrested the man as I told them to do. However, it would not be hard to find him — his injuries were not exactly typical of the scene." Namir's tone turns dry, humorless, and almost cold. "I decided to work a little magic on him to disable him, as his … abilities were not to be trifled with. He was bleeding out of his ears and nose last I saw him and unconscious. I doubt he will have gotten away without hearing damage. In any case, he needs to be found as soon as possible, and I cannot rely on normal police channels to locate him. Nobody would believe that he was responsible."

PHONE: Erica speaks calmly. "Describe him to me, Officer, and I can maybe look for him sometimes when I go on my… night travels. Few people might believe him responsible, but at that same time few would expect a woman searching overhead without mechanical help." She pauses. "I already broke Posse Comitatus anyway."

PHONE: Namir snorts in that same mirthless fashion. "There were plenty of laws being broken on all sides today, Captain. A few more in the name of apprehending a very dangerous mass-murderer who leaves no trace will hardly make a difference." A moment's pause, and when he speaks again, he sounds somewhat surprised that he could have ever said such a thing. "He was in a Yankees ballcap and was … older. I would put him in his 40s or 50s, perhaps— " he trails off briefly again. "I know a woman who is a sketch artist. I can work with her to come up with a composite, if you like. It would be much easier."

PHONE: Erica replies quietly "That might help. If this man can recover, or maybe even if he doesn't, he may try something like this again."

PHONE: Namir says, "My main concern is that he might be holed up in a hospital somewhere." The cold edge is back in his voice. "The last thing we need is a disaster like this to occur in a hospital. I … am fairly confident he will not be doing anything drastic for at least another day or two. I was not gentle with him."

PHONE: Erica says, "I understand, Officer."

PHONE: Namir remains silent again for some time before he releases a sigh. "In all the excitement, I did not see you there. Where are you? Did you make it out all right?"

PHONE: Erica chuckles. "I got out all right, I made use of my command voice on the street outside for a while, encouraging people to go home and let the officials do their work. I left when it seemed the police presence was strong enough to no longer need assistance, and then… I went to the roof of my building. Right now I'm over the New York Stock Exchange. About one hundred feet up."

PHONE: Namir is once again speechless. How does one respond to that? There is only /one/ way to respond to that, and that is to ask: "You get signal up there?" Who knew?

PHONE: Erica chuckles. "Towers are taller than this, mounted on higher buildings, and they go 360 degrees."

PHONE: Namir grunts, impressed, but it's soon given way to tiredness once again. "Well, then, have a good flight. I hope you brought a life jacket this time. I ought to get to sleep."

PHONE: Erica says, "Good night, Officer."

PHONE: Namir says, "Good night, Captain."

PHONE: You end your current call.

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