2010-01-16: Pawn Shop to Kings Highway Four

Starring:

Cody_V4icon.pngRandall_V4icon.png

with special appearances by

Jade_V4icon.png

and the still hard-working agents of Alpha Protocol

Date: January 16, 2010

Summary:

Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!


"Pawn Shop to Kings Highway Four"

Downtown, NYC - Pawn Shop

Previously on Heroes…

Randall glances back toward Jade for a split second, as if to reply— but no, he's pushing his limits already, he doesn't have enough presence of mind left to discuss the enemy's tactics. At least he did anticipate that they'd have the back door covered; stopping halfway there, he shoves a crate out of the way, uncovering a hatch leading down. "C'mon!" he whispers, pulling it open and starting to climb down a metal ladder.

He should have counted on them checking the building plans. Hey, nobody's perfect.


The thundering boom causes a cloud of debris and dust, some of the brownstones in New York are a little on the crumbly side, but the agents are all well armored. As the three climb upward through the newly formed hole, they catch a glimpse of a female figure heading in the opposite direction.

"Target aquired!" No amount of hurry can save the teen as two of the three point red lasers at her and fire the tranquilizer darts in her direction.

Through the radio, a female voice can be heard. "Tell me what's happening down there." It's calm, eerily so.

They must have them tuned to VOX because one of the men begins shouting. "Target hit, they're headed down a different shaft!"

From her place across the street, Cody curses and grits her teeth. "Hatter, keep your position. Doormouse, post one man inside to wait for March Hare, the other two go after them." Then she turns to one of the other agents up on the roof with her and snaps her fingers quickly. "Find out what's underneath that basement, I need this information yesterday soldier. Now move move move!"

Move move move! Randall thinks to himself. He's imagined a moment like this for months, ever since the old owner showed him the hatch in the stock room and what it led to - and more vividly in recent weeks, as it seemed more and more likely that he would indeed need to use it at some point - but actually doing it under pressure of time and danger is a different animal. Adrenaline is spurring him on, but if he doesn't stay focused, then all it means is that he'll stumble and get caught that much faster.

At the sound of the tranquilizer dart whistles through the air and thudding into flesh, he freezes for just a moment - was he just hit? no, Jade was - then quickly meets her gaze. "You can still make it! C'mon!" A few seconds later, they reach the bottom of the ladder and hop down onto a metal platform, quickly dropping flat onto it.

As for Jade, the last thing that passes through her mind before she succumbs to the knockout drug is probably along the lines of Why is the ground moving?

The orders are followed without question and as Randall and the now unconscious Jade hit the platform the agents are just getting to the top of the ladder. The first take no time to hang onto the sides of the metal fram and slide downward. "It's a subway platform!!" This information is relayed up to the top, and then by radio to the agents on the roof across the street.

Agent Baker paces as she receives the news then she spins on one heel to eye another agent at a small computer. "I want the power to the subay shut down to this grid and all adjacent grids. Make the call now." She's calm again, with every little tidbit, she's able to make her plans a little better.

The second agent follows the first and slides down the ladder to land beside his counterpart. Standing back to back, they strafe in a circle to get a good view of their surroundings and try to locate their mark again.

There's no earthly way of knowing

Which direction we are going

Randall doesn't need to ask why they're moving, he already knows. What he does ask himself, staring down at the subway car below them as it begins to pick up speed, is What the hell was I thinking? Is there even room for us up here? I must be crazy after all… And then, for a while, all he has the presence of mind to think about is hanging on tight and waiting for the car to reach its next stop. Once he gets that far, he should be able to haul Jade down the side, back up to street level, and catch a cab to Somewhere Else. If they don't get crushed along the way. If he has time to get her down before the car continues on to the next stop on the line. And if the government agents aren't quick enough to figure out the plan and get a guard to the exit before he reaches it.

The pair are spotted up ahead and the two agents flatten to the car, just as it starts passing through another tunnel up ahead. They're not bothered by the constricting passage though and begin to cralw on their bellies toward the man and his unconscious employee. About two minutes later, the train lurches to a stop and everything is dark.

"The power's shut down to the grids requested, Sir." The agent at the computer states, looking a little proud at the accomplishment. It wasn't an easy task, but they managed, hopefully before the train made it to its next stop.

"Good work, find out which train that is and get men on every exit." Screw the budget, Cody is not going to fail. She'll bring in a decoy target if she has to to save face. "Find out the address to every target in the immediate area. If we lose this one we're going to bring something in to show for our work."

Not a speck of light is showing

So the danger must be growing

Son of a crap. Of all the ways Randall figured this plan could have gotten screwed up, having the car shut down mid-transit was not one of them. Now that it's happened, though… was that an entry hatch he saw earlier, a couple feet ahead of where they landed? He couldn't use it earlier without attracting the notice of a few dozen passengers, but now that the lights have cut out as well, and the roar of movement has been replaced by the hubbub of confused conversation just below… He crawls forward, feeling around until he finds the handle and pulls it open, then slips an arm around Jade's waist and drags her in after himself. A couple of people still notice that something weird just happened, but most are too busy talking to each other or on their cell phones.

The problem with subways in New York, especially subways in rush hour, is that they're always crowded with witnesses. Cursing, the agent in the front pulls his radio to his lips and pushes a button. "Alice, this is Doormouse, he's gone into the car. Repeat, the target has ducked into the car. Should we follow?"

'That's a good way to screw up a top secret operation,' Cody thinks to herself as she paces the roof. Her eyes dart from rock to rock as her boots crunch through the gravel top, she's strategizing and trying to come up with a way to salvage this. They could… Yes… She pulls the radio to her lips and gives yet another order to the agents down below. "Gas the entire train and pick through the bodies until you find the right ones… We'll call it a gas leak later to the press."

Blissfully unaware of just how close he is to being nabbed, even after all this trouble, Randall does his best to struggle forward. At least Jade's dead weight isn't too much of an albatross round his neck, as (1) she was always a fairly petite ball of snark and (2) some of the others present are helping support her as they pass by, assuming that she must've gotten knocked out when the car stopped. And (3) he only needs to put enough distance between himself and the hatch that the people around him won't put two and two together; if the government agents reach the car before he gets out of it, then it probably won't matter where he is.

"Sir? We don't have the go ahead from HQ to take a measure like that. The brass is calling it a wash." The agent at the computer says with a bit of meekness in his voice. Nothing at all like a true soldier. Perhaps he's just afraid of the backlash he's about to get for speaking out of turn.

When Cody gets the news, she narrows her eyes at the man and slowly raises the radio to her lips. "Abort mission, pull back. We'll regroup and figure something else out. March Hare, I want everything in that shop picked through with a fine tooth comb. I want you to track every move this guy has made in the last five years." She's got alternate methods, she'll use them. Then turning to the agent at the computer, she gives him a nod and declares sullenly, "Get the power turned back on."

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