2008-04-12: Pet Project

Starring:

DL_icon.gif Niki_icon.gif MrMuggles_icon.gif Noah_icon.gif

Summary: Teamwork is working together — even when apart. As soon as they leave the club, HRG sends Niki and D.L. on… a mission. Save the pomeranian, save the world their marriage Noah's ass their lives … you be the judge.

Date It Happened: April 12th, 2008

Pet Project


Queens, New York

D.L. is too busy leaving the strip club to actually be worried about anything at this moment. His hands are in his pockets the moment he comes out of the door and he's looking down. Not quite paying attention to much of anything at the moment, since he's too busy wanting to just get out of here, since there's too much going on in his head to actually focus on anything that may or may not be happening out here. Like cars that may be racing down the street. Or giant wrecking balls. Or anything like that.

A minute or so later, Niki emerges too — quite separately from D.L. Woe be to anyone among the strip club goers milling around the entrance to Therapy, smoking and loitering on the street, if they mess with this blonde ex-stripper tonight. Hands wrapped tightly, guardedly, over the bare skin of her arms, she gives off definite vibes of 'leave me the hell alone'. Granted, her expression walks a fine line between being on the verge of kicking someone in the pants and bursting into tears. Women, right?

From down the sidewalk, there is a gentle jingle that fills the air. It's soft at first, dancing on the spring air until it becomes loud enough to hear. Those looking for the source will look across… Then down to see the source. It's a small dog, appearing to be a Pomeranian. The small but masculine beast strides down with swift strides that lack any signs of fear and hesitation. Most small dogs would be scared to be alone, but not this amazing beast.

People stare down the street, looking at this animal that is curiously… Without a master. In particular two Hispanic young men appearing in their midtwenties glance toward the dog. The one wearing a t-shirt of a cartoonish man holding a gat nudges the other. "You see that? That's a Pomeranian!"

The man wearing a t-shirt with some busty latino woman leaning over stares first at the god and then at his comrade. "A what?"

"Pomeranian, man! A prize winner from the looks of it!"

"We did not steal cable from our neighbors just so you could be watching ANIMAL PLANET all day."

The first man eyes the second. "Screw you, that dog's worth a few hundred, I'll just enjoy the cut myself!" With that, the man makes his way toward the dog followed closely by the second man.

D.L. cares not about amazing dogs or hispanic kidnappers. Mostly because of the fact that he's in dire straits of his own life right now. He does, however, end up stopping in the midst of all this action to drop down to his knee and start with the tying up of his boot. He can't be trippin', physically, as well as mentally at this moment. For some reason, though, he ends up looking backwards and over his shoulder… in which he sees his woman. His ex-woman. His… oh god. It's just Niki. Why can't he solve this problem.

A little jingle is the least of Niki's concerns amidst the street sounds. She starts to make her way down the sidewalk in that direction, however, vaguely registering the fact that there's a tiny dog with some guys chasing after it. It's the fact that there's someone looking in her direction that catches her attention. D.L. Awkward. Her walk falters, and she steps closer to the side of the building and stands her ground, giving him a headstart. They'd just have to be going in the same direction.

The two men go up to the dog. The small breed animal yips to defend itself, even biting the second man's hand before the first man is able to get in and secure the living gold mine. "Now all we need to do is just sell this thing to some breeder and we got ourselves spending money for the rest of the we-"

Blood trickles down his patent leather shoes and he walks with a limb, almost dragging the wounded leg behind him. Sweat pours down his face, which is wrinkled in pain and determination. Fierce blue eyes shine behind a familiar pair of glasses. "You there, stop! That's not your dog!" he orders in voice filled with a tired agony. The man? None other than Noah Bennet, family man and one of the most skilled agents in the world. How did this happen? It is a long story. The more important thing is what he does now as he sees the men are seemingly ignoring his claim. Resting his eyes on angst ridden couple, he only has one thing to say, "Niki, D.L.! Secure that dog at all costs!"

The second man looks to the first. "I didn't know we were stealing an FBI guy's dog!"

"Shut up and run!" And with that… The criminals book it.

D.L. is in the process of looking at his girl and then his attention is stolen by Noah Bennet. The man that he owes quite a deal to. "… What." Of course, there's not really anything that he can say at the moment, besides that, because he's thrust into active duty as a Non-Agent of whatever it is that Noah works for. He doesn't particularly look like he's going to enjoy this, but his eyes are taken off in the direction of the dognappers and he breaks into a quick run towards the both of them. Being on one knee assists with a track style running start. Operation: Dive & Tackle is a go for one of those men.

Is that…

Bennet?

"…" At first, Niki can do nothing but stare at the sights, more at Noah, with his bloody shoes and limp and demand than the fleeing men and ball of fluff. Does she really owe the man enough to go chasing after his dog? …Probably. Considering a few wrong steps could throw her back in a cell, she should probably do her active Non-Agent Duty too, right? She only has a few seconds to look indignant and no time to wonder why D.L. is also chasing two men and a Pomeranian before she takes off at run. "Hey! Hey!"

Soon the two men find that there is an angry woman and a large black man after them. No one likes to have a large black man after them, at least when he seems like he's gunna pummel you. The two men continue their sprinting, trying to get away. They begin yelling at one another, though it is in Spanish. Whatever the hurried men say, it seems to be far from pleasant. Despite their desperation, they take a left at an intersection and then a right… It's like they are running for some place in particular. While they are reasonably fit, it is likely a matter of time before the other two people catch up with them.

Noah… Just takes it easy at a bus stop bench, getting to work on what seems to be setting a broken bone in place or at least checking out the damage.

The Power of the Black Man fuels D.L.'s speed and he's practically something close to a blur. At least, enough so that he can hang the left and then the right to see if he can't keep up with these Latin Thugs. "You guys are really startin' to piss me off." is mumbled underneath his breath, since he's pretty sure they won't stop even if they heard it. D.L. pours on the speed to make sure he gets close enough to these putzes to keep them in range. Of his fists.

Niki may not have the Power of the Black Man on her side seeing as she's the complete opposite, but she's pretty fast (no comments). Although D.L. makes better time up ahead, she's coming up quickly after the twists and turns. The heels of cowboy-style boots pounding the pave of Queens with her long-legged strides, making it known, at least to D.L., that she's somewhere behind him and catching up.

The quarry continues to flee the married(?) couple, but it seems they are keeping up. "Your sacrifice will be remembered!" the first man yells to the slower man. Before his partner can respond, he finds himself shoved right for D.L. Regardless if he knocks the man over or not, the first man makes his way toward a boarded up house. "Homies, homies, I've got a guy chasing me!" he calls out as he bangs the door a couple of times.

There is no response.

Banging on the door a couple more times, the lone gangsta calls out again. "There is some hot woman with him that you could do all sorts of nasty things with if you took her by force!"

No response.

"They're gunna take the Pomeranian!"

The door is opened and a large latino man stares at the dog. Mr. Muggles stares at the man, giving a few rageful yip. The large man gives a couple of barks himself. Mr. Muggles pees on his holder's shirt. Looking toward where the man came from, the large man states in a low tone, "Why didn't you say it was for a cuddly Pomeranian in the first place? I had one when I was a kid. I called him Bandit. Like that dog from Johnny Quest and-"

"THEY ARE RIGHT-" A firm fist plants itself in the dognapper's gut. "Don't interrupt storytime."

"Niki… baby… if you still love me, you'll knock this guy into next week!" D.L. says this as he proceeds to go right into Phase Mode and passes through the sacrificed man of latinoness. It's a near miss phase, mostly because he's running at the same time and his foot kind of unphases early, just in time to clip the gangsta's foot and hopefully stumble that fool. Of course, this slows D.L. down on his race to catch up to the other one… and the dog… and the building that is in visual range.

Niki doesn't slow down, nearly hurtling into the tripping latino herself. Just as well! With a look of determination that really has little to do with Mr. Muggles or Noah Bennet, she runs straight into the guy, shoving up against him with her hand, trying to stop him long enough by grabbing his shirt so she can throw a super-stripper-powered punch in his face with the other.

"That man… Just went through another man," the brick-like gang member offers, narrowing his eyes to the advancing D.L.. "Just like Bill Cosby in Ghost Dad." Short pause. "I hated Ghost Dad." That in mind, the large man powerwalks toward D.L., the odd Latino clearly ready to rumble.

The sacrifical lamb is easily tripped up sadly, getting his shirt gripped and then swiftly taken out with one punch. It would seem that this guy was far from a fighter. Of course, there are two other men in the house and they take out their weapons, a bat and a chain respectively.

Mr. Muggles yips again, perhaps demanding his freedom or asking for peaceful mediation. Who knows, Lachlan ain't around for doggie decoying duty.

Finally. D.L. can stop running. He's been chasing down Latinos for too many blocks and now he's going to have to throw down with the big one. Pulling himself to something of a stop, D.L. immediately cracks his neck and his knuckles as he watches the powerwalking homie make his way over to him. "Just give us the dog. We'll let you walk away." It's, very likely, the only warning that he's going to give this dude.

They're a vicious team, when you get right down to it. Niki steps over the man she punched without a mark on her knuckles to show for it. She hesitates for a second, concerned about leaving D.L. alone with the big guy, but— he can handle his own. Usually. And so, she makes a move to run past him toward the boarded-up house. Once upon a time, she'd have life-fearing reservations about sauntering up to armed men, but they only look stronger than her. She's since gained strength in more than just the physical regard.

"You are threatening me… Over a dog? How about you just give us a couple hundred and we call it a day?" the large man says, merely smirking to D.L.. While the husband might be muscular, the brick-like Latino is not concerned or worried in the least.

Likewise, Niki gets little if any respect, the two men just giving catcalls and offers to be with a real man if they hang with them for the night. Of course, they are holding their weapons, but they aren't expecting them to use them for the time being, using them mostly for show. After all, not like the woman's going to be trying to take on two armed men, right?

D.L. has no issues with this guy other than the fact that he needs the dog back. And that's something he's not about to let slip through his fingers. If only because he's working for Noah Bennet unofficially and answering to him without the dog is a worse fate than what he's going through right now. "Have it your way." D.L. remarks with a shrug, before he rears back and sends one of his muscular fists of doom towards the Latino Brickhouse's jaw!

…Yeah, about that. The catcalls and jeers aren't about to do the men any good. At first they were just associates of a pet thief. Now they're more deserving of what's coming to them. Niki slows down once she reaches them, falling out of her breakneck run only to march straight up to one of them — the guy with the baseball bat — and grab for it, stealing it out of his grasp. Holding it tightly just like a baseball pro, swiiing— ! In the deceptively slight woman's grasp, the baseball bat swings for its owner — in the direction of his pal with the chains.

The thug that DL punches reels back a couple of steps before falling down. That was one hell of a punch, as it KOes him just like that. The two men are knocked away, taken out in one swing. That leaves the dognapper. Cursing in Spanish he knows that they will be coming for him next. There is only one thing to do. With a mighty heave, the napper launches Mr. Muggles straight into the air, hoping that the flying dog will distract the two as he turns to make his getaway.

Mr. Muggles is thrown in an awkward arc, but he regains balance in mid-air and sprawls his legs majestically in the air. He is, after all, a true show dog. Hopefully, his career won't end in a splat.

D.L. doesn't even spare the falling brickhouse a glance, because there's a dog that's high into the sky and he must be saved. "Ah…" And there's probably a curse word or two muttered under his breath at this point, as he breaks into a quick jog and sends himself into a dramatic leap towards the trajectory of the closest thing he's got to Air Bud at the moment.

Niki lets the baseball bat clatter to the sidewalk — some distance from the men, even though the blonde herself hasn't moved an inch since hitting them with her swing. She has one hell of a batter's arm. And then there's a flying dog and— this isn't how she imagined her night going. Whirling around, grimacing, Niki does the most logical thing … under the circumstances. She chases after the trajectory of the Pomeranian, diving to try to stop its fall. It looks tiny and breakable.

The only certain thing that happens is that Niki and D.L. are crashing the hell into each other in a slam and tangle of estranged husband and wife and show dog.

Somehow, Mr. Muggles is able to walk away from the married mess and just look at the two. He tilts his head to the side at first before just laying down.

Finally catching up to the Muggles warzone, Noah walks in with the assistance of a rather nice looking cane. Where did he get the cane? Well, that medical doctor was such a jerk, Noah figured the guy wouldn't miss it much. Mr. Muggles perks up, as if ready to start the chase anew. "Do that, Muggles, and I will have to shoot you." Somehow the dog understands and just lays down. "I have to thank you both… Surprising how well you both work as a team. After all that's happened."

D.L. only seems to be listening to Noah at this point because he's wrapped up in a human pretzel combination with his wife. The slow motion collision with her, which allowed the dog to get away safely, is enough to keep him going for quite some time. He has no words, though, as he just looks from the dog to Noah and then from Noah to the female that he was just thinking about how much he loves.

It's only now that Niki can really stop and think about what they're doing — that is, why they both rushed to follow the orders of HRG, whose voice she hears as she slowly detangles herself. There was no other way to go but down in that collision, and now she pushes herself up after nearly tumbling over D.L., a hand instinctively going to his arm to make sure he's okay. She looks at Mr. Muggles. She looks at Noah. "…you're… welcome?"

"Muggles, here, have a jerky treat for you." Noah uses the piece of a Slim Jim and traps the beast under his arm. "It's clear that you both need some help. In order to uphold my end of the bargain, the three of us need to chat. Call me when you ready. Now if you excuse me, I need to return this dog to his owner." And with that, Noah slowly limps away.

Now there are some questions unanswered. How did Mr. Muggles get into trouble? Simple. Noah had promised Sandra to take the dog to the vet, as she was too busy helping Claire and Lyle with various things. It was supposed to be the 'one thing he could do' since he rarely had time to help the family. Mr. Muggles like the car windows down, but they are supposed to be mostly up. Noah forgot the second part and during an important call about the state of the Company, the dog leapt out the window. Noah pursued.

But how did Noah get his leg wounded? Did someone attack him on the way? No, a speeding car was heading right for Mr. Muggles and Noah knew how important that dog was. When Noah and Sandra were told they couldn't have children, Mr. Muggles was supposed to help ease the pain. Muggles was important to Sandra… And that meant for that he was important enough to race in front of a car for. Not that he'll tell anyone that's what happened. He'll just blame Sylar or something for the leg.

END

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