2010-04-04: Resurrection



Date: April 4th, 2010


Nathan and Tracy meet with George to get him on board with the press conference.


Washington, D.C.

It's almost relaxing for George, being back in Washington again. There's still plenty for him and his staff to work on, and plenty of pressure to go in one direction or another - but here, the pressure is a national thing, and has hundreds of targets to choose from; back in New York City, it's local, and it's all on him.

"Stan actually did the right thing here for once," he muses, handing a fax to his current online-commerce wonk. "I don't know who switched him off decaf, but see what you can do to keep it going. Ashley, have we heard back from the mayor's office about the emergency services budget, or do we need to get on their case again?"

Having just flown in from New York City — with a passenger in tow — Nathan's hair is quite wind blown. It feels off-putting to be in D.C. without a suit. Well it does for him, anyways, even if he hasn't been in a suit for almost three months — time certainly flies (and so does he… ha). But then, it makes him blend a little better and appear less Senatorial. It's unfortunate his whiskers are gone for this reason. Clad in a leather jacket, dark aviator sunglasses, blue jeans, and a white t-shirt, Senator Nathan Petrelli steps into the main reception area of the Congressman's office and clucks his tongue. "I need to speak to the Congressman— " he takes a step away from the desk as he glances down the hall, " — is his office that way?"

Appearing quickly behind Nathan is Tracy. It's been some time since she's been in these familiar stomping grounds — and for good reason. She's very aware of the very real possibility of being recognized, after falling off the face of the earth months ago, but knowing Tracy, she has an explanation and an exit strategy already, should that happen. The bright primary yellow sweater she wears isn't exactly incognito, but it's the kind of prim business casual that fits in well enough in D.C. on a weekend — perhaps making her appearance a little more normal than Nathan.

She's also still in the process of smoothing her hair down as she approaches the desk, her head slightly down, but her strides confident even though she's still wide-eyed and recovering from the … flight. She keeps close to Nathan and says nothing, though that's bound to change. Soon.

This office doesn't get a lot of unscheduled visits: another contrast to New York, where a fair number of locals skip the 'write your congressman' stage and just hop a cab. There's an unobtrusive security guard near the back of the lobby whose attention perks up - he doesn't immediately recognize either of them - but they're asking, not yelling or brandishing a gun, so he keeps quiet and lets the receptionist field it. "Can I tell him who's calling?" she asks, politely glossing over both Tracy's question and the implied followup 'are you going to let us back there'.

With a glance around the lobby, Nathan considers for a moment before his eyes narrow into slits. "Brayden Calvert," he says with an easy smile resembling that belonging to his alter-ego as he takes another step back from the desk. He glances at Tracy, there's no reason to push further right now. Not yet although he does glance down the hallway again.

Alert blue eyes note that security guard with the vaguest of nervous flashes, but otherwise, Tracy is calm — the picture of waiting patiently, now that she's leveling out from the rush here. She glances to Nathan — or shall we say Brayden — hopefully for a moment before answering the receptionist also. "Linda," she answers simply with a brief, but bright, smile.

Obligingly, the receptionist presses two buttons in quick succession: one to ring the boss, one to put it on speakerphone. "There's a Brayden Calvert requesting a meeting? And Linda—" She turns a c'mon-gimme-a-last-name expression toward the second visitor, but George's voice cuts in at that point. "It's all right, Maureen-- ah, send them to Meeting Room C, I'll be there in a couple minutes."

"Thank you," Nathan says with his still easy smile — the one that makes his cheeks hurt but had such a naturalness about it throughout Ireland. He points down the hall, "That way?" although he's already moving in the general direction anyway, hopefully it leads to Meeting Room C.

Tracy falls in stride next to Nathan on the way to the ambiguous Meeting Room C; every office building seems to have one. "The guy's supposed to be our ally. Remember, this is a cakewalk," she advises in a low voice, tinged with just a healthy dose of cynicism. "You don't have to go in with the speech of the year about saving the world."

Rooms A and B are obviously designed for group presentations and/or glad-handing: long oak tables, leather chairs, and plate glass allowing the whole thing to be seen from the hall. Room C is almost as big, but more utilitarian - and George's hand is on the door just as the others round the corner. "Ah, there you are. C'mon in, you two." Before anyone else sees you, he adds, mentally: he's been expecting them to be playing cloak-and-dagger if they're doing anything at all, and Nathan's use of his amnesiac identity's name only underscores that.

"Who do you think I am, Peter?" Nathan mumbles towards Tracy as the pair traipse down the hall towards Room C. "I don't think I could give the speech of the year after that flight anyways," he smirks, but his demeanour changes back into that of his Senatorial self as George enters his line of vision.

"Good to see you, Congressman," Nathan manages as he offers a hand for George to shake. He finally takes off his sunglasses and stepping into the meeting room. He clips the shades to his shirt before choosing a seat at the table. "I'm betting you didn't buy the media reports of my long-standing illness?"

Tracy gives Nathan a decidedly warning look before they're met by George. "Congressman," the advisor greets with a pleasant smile, her hand following Nathan's to shake in turn. She slips inside and her pleasantries somber up into something a little more serious. One hand lingers on the back of the chair around the corner from the Senator's before she sits down. Instead of regarding their impromptu host, her eyes are on Nathan. So are her ears. She's as much ready to help him explain as she is, essentially, ready to interrupt him at any time.

In addition to the opaque walls, the room has its own coffee maker, which George starts to boiling before closing the door, the better to discourage any further interruptions. "I suspected there was something more to it… I wondered whether it was a good or a bad something." Like the time with the amnesia. Or the time with the evil-twin-brother personality. Nathan and cover stories is not an unusual combination. "So— I heard something about speech-of-the-year? Please tell me you figured out who we need to blow the whistle on."

"No speech of the year, but we do need your help," Nathan glances down at the table, but only for a moment before he looks at George intently. Dark circles line his eyes, and weariness has long set in, "Things are worse than we thought. They've been worse for awhile; I was taken into Protocol custody, and spent the better part of two months there. Alpha Protocol is only the first of many, and it's not about taking out the head — it can't be because the instant we do that, a new head will appear. You see, DeSouza was the woman in charge." Absently he briefly raises a hand to his forehead as his eyes close. "There's too much money involved for them to let up."

A small smirk appears on the woman's face at George's whistle-blowing comment, but it is mostly repressed, her expression remains quite conservative — neutral, even, until the time comes for her to speak up.

That time is now. "Which… is why," Tracy begins, sitting up straighter with an idle toss of her hair. "In order to make a difference, the Senator can't be hiding in the shadows. Not anymore. Now, normally, we could just make an announcement about his sudden turn of health. Problem is, we all know this situation isn't normal. We don't want undue attention before the main event. Namely, Senator Petrelli taking his spotlight back. We need a favour, Congressman."

George frowns, pouring himself a cup of coffee (and then offering it to the others) while he mulls over the new news. "Well, that's just great. So they're not looking at us as threats, they're looking at us as resources." And game-changing resources, at that, if applied in the right situation. He should know.

Speaking of? If they weren't already aware that he had an ability himself, then that little slip with the pronouns probably just gave it away.

"All right, I assume you want me to be the first part of a Kansas City shuffle," he continues. "Mind filling me in on the second part? I can keep the staff in the dark, but someone needs to make sure we don't get in your way by accident."

"Exactly. A favour," Nathan nods at Tracy's words, resting his hands on the table. "I need to do my job and I need to do it well. And to do that, I need to essentially reappear." He leans back in his chair as his gaze turns upwards.

"Exactly. Like a bait and switch. We bait them in with a press conference called by yourself and your staff and I address… the people." He turns in his chair and glances at Tracy, in a moment of uncertainty. "Don't worry too much about our plans. There's a lot of people working different angles to take down the protocols. For me to be successful at my role in all of it, I need to essentially come back from the dead. Again." How many times can a politician do that?

Us. Anyone's interest in all this tends to be vested, so while the use of the pronoun by George doesn't surprise Tracy, she does suddenly, and noticeably, look at him a little differently. Wondering. But again her gaze falls on Nathan, watchful and full of movement, seeming to track his every word. To his uncertainty, she's certain, with a long, solid look that says so.

Then she's quickly addressing George. "Once and for all," she adds to Nathan's words. "The press conference can be about … anything. Once everyone's eyes're on the Senator, it doesn't matter what everyone was there for starting out."

George thinks to himself, for a few seconds more— then sets the coffee down and smiles, if faintly. "I think I know just the red herring." Leaning forward, he mirrors the receptionist's one-two punch with the phone. "Maureen? Leave Hallie a message, I think she's filming now but I need to talk with her as soon as she gets a break. About a couple of things— maybe three, depending. And tell Ashley to prep for some bad spin-doctoring."

"Excellent," Nathan manages a smile. And then mention of Hallie draws another question, "I also have a favour to ask of that wonderful lady of yours — she managed to find me a wonderful suit back at Christmas, and frankly, for this I need a new one. I can figure something else out if need be, but she apparently knows my measurements, and I'd rather not garner more attention than necessary prior to the Press Conference…" He smiles almost ironically. Of all of the things he owns, he never thought he'd be in want of a suit, especially as he has a closet full back at the Petrelli mansion.

Tracy is looking pretty content with a job well done. Like Nathan, she smiles, but it's on the strained side. It's not a celebration yet. Not by far. Nodding, she finally takes the coffee cup and takes a sip, out of politeness and because it's there. "Thank you, Congressman."

"Welcome. And I'll do that— she's got enough else going on, it should be easy enough to slip that into the mix without anyone catching on." George is already mentally compiling a list of the details, but if any distraction will do, then he won't waste their time going through it all exhaustively. "Anything else I should keep in mind for this?"

"I think we're good on all other fronts," Nathan says as he slides his chair away from the table. "And we won't take up anymore of your time. I know you're busy — it's a trying time for everyone." As he stands, he offers the Congressman his hand for a final shake good-bye, "Thanks for doing this, Congressman."

Tracy rises easily to her feet not a moment later. Cup abandoned along with the table, she reaches into a pocket of her trim black pants to retrieve a small piece of folded paper, which she hands to George neatly between two fingers. "To reach us." The number reaches Tracy, but they happen to be under one roof at the moment. She moves off to the side of the door, where she waits.

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