2007-08-17: Say Cheese


Church_icon.gif Felix_icon.gif Giselle_icon.gif Vasili_icon.gif

Summary: Felix and Vasili meet on a cold, dark night. It doesn't stay cold, nor does it stay dark. Giselle and Lawrence get what they want, but it could have gone better.

Date It Happened: August 17, 2007

Say Cheese

Central Park

The iconical urban park that is none other than the one and only Central Park spans two and a half miles. The greenery of trees, bushes and well-kept lawns make it an oasis outside of the concrete jungle. Several quaint bridges, all of which are unique, are scattered throughout the park - as are bronze statues of figures such as Christopher Columbus and Balto. The park is home to various restaurants, playgrounds, the Metropolitan Museum, the Central Park Zoo, and Wollman Rink.

Although it's recently been touted as one of the safest urban parks there is - it has its own police precinct - it's still probably a wise idea to be careful at night.


Those watchers who've been tracking him will note that Felix has not actually been home. Not much. He's been spending his nights elsewhere - Aileen's, specifically - and his days at work, though he's been pleading sick there of late. All as if afraid of being taken or pursued there, strangely enough. But tonight he has ventured warily back to his apartment to get clothes and other items.

At the moment, though, he's schlepping a duffle bag back through the Park, on foot. He's in jeans, pale t-shirt, with a white Oxford open over it - those with half an eye for such things will be able to see the shoulder holster beneath it. He looks pale and weary, eyes sunken, but his pace is steady enough as he pads along one of the asphalt paths, ducking in and out of the pools of light cast by the path's lamps.

Wearing sunglasses at night either means you are a douchebag or you are up to something. For Lawrence Church, it is mostly the latter, though some people might label him with both right off the bat. This evening has been a success thus far, but will only be entirely so when the target of days of study is apprehended. Figure obscured by shadows and trees, the agent has been tailing Felix in some regard since he had gone to fetch his things from home; the other two agents with him have been doing the same until they reached the park, whereupon they split.

Giselle's duty is to watch the opposite side of Felix, so that the partners can literally be on either side of him, hidden away, and just a moment behind. The ambient noises of the park at night have not deviated from the usual, though the weather tonight is particularly chilly for a night in the midst of August. Church keeps to his quiet observing off in the dark of a side-path, his black blazer and slacks keeping him well-hidden, while the slip of a pale blue shirt and the flesh tones of his hands and face simply seem to ghost in and out of sight. Mostly out of it.

The job claimed by Vasili Babenkov is, as far as he's concerned, the /most important of all/. If someone would have to classify him by Church's standards - well. Douchebag all the way, baby. Since it's time to come out into the open, though, Vasili starts making his way through the trees as quietly as he can manage, the dark leather of his jacket helping him blend into the darkness. The street lamps aren't that close together either, so it's probably something of a shock for poor Felix when his fellow Russian suddenly steps onto the path in front of him, hands tucked into his pockets. "Evening, asshole."

It shouldn't take three agents to stalk one man, but Felix's power is still largely undefined - and thus, dangerous by its sole quality of being unknown. Giselle has been doing exactly what she'd been briefed into doing, dressed in a taupe-gray windbreaker and dark jeans; if she'd been close enough to blatantly eye Church without arousing suspicion, she'd have given him an eyeroll. Shades indeed. /Good job/. The bulky outline of what is presumably a firearm distends the lines of her jacket, the flaps occasionally breezing outwards a little. Neither of her hands are in her pockets, but they're close, ready to get there at a moment's notice. At an alternate side-path roughly parallel Church's, she watches Vasili and Felix mutely. Luuurk.

Shock? Oh, yes. An unpleasant one. Felix stops short, dropping the duffle bag without hesitation. Nothing in it will be helpful if he has to fight or run, and clothes can be replaced. "Babenkov," he says, one hand already creeping for the Sig under his overshirt. Yeah, it's a huge pile of paperwork if he has to draw his service weapon, but honestly? Shooting Vasili would be worth it. <The fuck do you want?> He's unthinkingly dropped into their native tongue. He's completely unaware of the other pair dogging his heels.

Hey! Shades are totally fashionable when tailing. It makes the skittish ones run faster, which means more chasing. Church likes to chase people if only because he gets to rocket after them, which in turn seems to freak them out even more. He pauses when Vasili makes himself seen, and Felix responds in a way that makes Lawrence smirk. The man leans himself on one of the trees to watch and listen, shoes quiet as they step onto the moss off of the path. He has a gun under his jacket, but it goes untouched and probably will remain so. Hopefully.

<I'd keep your hands where I can see them, if I were you. Never know when one of these mugging things might go bad, right?> As he speaks Vasili starts edging forward, his own hands slipping from his pockets. His right starts to drift towards a knife belted to his waist while he uses the left to be a complete ass, wagging an index finger back and forth at Felix as though the agent were some sort of misbehaving child. The shit-eating grin on Vasili's face doesn't seem to be going anywhere any time soon - <Just take your well-deserved beating and then fuck off to lick your wounds.>

Dark shades also make your night vision even darker. It is nice to be able to see what is going on, mang. At this point, Giselle does roll her eyes, though once she's done she tunes her ears in to Vasili and Felix with a slight smirk of interest. She is like a mimic to Church across the path, disappearing backwards into the shadows to settle with her own back against a tree. Under its silhouette, she draws the firearm partly out of her jacket, though still out of visibility: it is a taser, not a killer. That's /her/ job.

Well, he'll just have to eat the paperwork, right? Because Felix produces a Walther PPK from beneath his overshirt with the alacrity of a magician pulling a rabbit out of his hat. There's even the malicious click of him cocking the hammer back - a semiautomatic doesn't need it, save to make the trigger pull just that much lighter. <Babenkov, you just keep that up. Let me claim self-defense. I'll get a slap on the wrist, you'll be a red mist and a heap of paperwork on some poor cop's desk. You pull that knife, I will kill you.> His tone is entirely matter of fact, as he levels the little pistol at Vasili's head.

Well. At least Vasili still counts as a distraction, even if he's not being quite as violent as he would have liked. The appearance of the gun has him halt suddenly, hands in the air with palms held outwards. <Don't be such a bad-natured shit, Ivanov. It reflects badly on you and your fellow officers of the law.> And then he's edging forward once again - it takes but a step before he judges himself to be within reach, and then he lunges forward, both hands aiming for the wrist that holds the gun in an attempt to force the weapon high.

<It's people like you who've soured my previously sweet temper and obliging nature,> Felix retorts. And then he's slipping back and away - he may not have any formal martial arts training, but he's still quick on his feet. The hand is not where Vasili is expected. Lucky for the Russian, the movement is enough to throw Felix's aim off, so the bullet that was orginally supposed to take him right in the face ends up in the younger man's shoulder. Felix's face is curiously inexpressive during the violence, blue eyes calm behind his glasses. He meant it about killing Vasili, apparently.

We were doing fine until the shooting! Oh, jeez. Even before the shot was fired, Church was on his toes again - but now he's making his way out onto the sidewalk with a jaunt in his step. The soles of his shoes click sharply on the concrete below, sounding behind Felix by at least a dozen feet. The chilly air is suddenly not so chilly anymore, rising a few degrees at a time to where it gets delightfully uncomfortable for a normal sort of man. Summer heat is back, but it's not due to a sunny day. It could be getting worse, but they aren't here to kill the target.

The shooting is most certainly /not/ fine, and Vasili lets out a harsh bark of a yell as his right hand flies up to his left shoulder, which feels as though it's suddenly been made the subject of a very sturdy punch. He ends up holding blood into his own body as the stuff starts seeping out of his fresh new bullet wound, squeezing up between his fingers to run down the back of his hand. That he's currently incapable of moving anywhere isn't helping the Russian's mood, but there's really nothing he can do about it but bitch. </Fucker/!>

Well. So much for Plan A. Giselle bites her bottom lip at precisely the moment the gunshot goes off, wincing mentally at Vasili's bloodwound. This isn't good; the gunshot will have been heard by passersby for a good distance around. The taser is clutched loosely in both hands, its end raised in the air as the female Agent peers past the tree. It is up to Church now to polish up what had been started with Felix, but she might end up finishing the situation off - or trying to - whether her partner is successful or not. They shouldn't linger around for too much longer.

The Agent's voice is calm, even. <I told you I would kill you,> he says, almost gently. <I meant it.> The heat has begun to rise - not furnace hot, but a strange breeze. And it saves Vasili's life, because it diverts Felix's attention just that necessary fraction of a second - the Agent glances around hastily, frowning, gun still held on Vasili….but his mental hold has eased. Vasha can run.

Church has taken a few steps forward, the heat with him rising as he moves closer to Felix from behind. As his heel touches the ground a third time, he smiles disarmingly. "You're going to wish you hadn't done that." Hot, hot, hot. The air feels much like someone just teleported them all to the Sahara, but it does not seem to be phasing the stranger addressing Felix.

Church's appearance has Felix scowling. Well, there goes his plan for coldblooded murder in the Park. Foolishly, no doubt, he turns his back on Vasili to face Church, though he still has the gun in hand. "And who the fuck are you?" he demands, reverting to English.'

The smile on the stranger's face widens, pearly white. "Nobody that you'll want to remember." Those pearly whites seem like chump change to what happens next. The heat stills, but something visible disturbs the air around Lawrence while he speaks - a hot haze around the air at first, then a tick of a glow around his silhouette - and then, FLASH. Everything in Felix's vision goes white, a hollow, sharp echo pervading nearby ears while everything else is assaulted with the blinding light of what might be the figurative equivalent of suddenly stepping onto the sun. Hello flare, goodbye visual senses; even closing one's eyes at this magnitude and this vicinity does little to help. This is why he wore sunglasses too, you see. Luckily for Giselle, Church did aim, however she'll probably get an eyeful if she did not shy away from it. Whatever that outcome, Lawrence simply hoped that she had seen the signs in the seconds beforehand.

Of all the myriad types of assault Felix was expecting? That wasn't it. He doesn't relinquish his hold on his gun, but instead he turns to try and stumble blindly away along the path. Quite likely right into Vasili, if the Russian hasn't bolted by now. There are tears streaming from his dazzled eyes, open and unseeing.

Vasili curses loudly when Felix tumbles back against him. It might be a small consolation that in grabbing up at Felix in an attempt to avoid or capture the other man he's managed to smear his blood all over the other man's precious white Oxford. The blood makes his grip slippery and he's not entertaining the best vision himself, but if he can manage to get his fingers fixed around some part - any part - of Felix, he's going to do his level best to yank the freak off his feet.

Either by the fact that she had, indeed, seen the signs beforehand or by utter instinct (probably a combination), Giselle tosses her face in the opposite direction just a second before the flash hits, hair whipping behind her. Even through tightly squeezed eyelids and peripheral vision - /ow/. She recovers quickly, briefly abandoning her tree-cover to step out to the side and fire. Perfect opportunity, while Felix is blinded - thanks, Church! ClickBZZZZZT.

Church takes a step back once Felix is dealt with in he least destructive manner, head turning to search the rim of trees for Giselle just as she appears and fires. Like a good boy, her partner has slipped entirely out of her way by now, and after a breeze touches upon the hot air around them, the heat begins to die off and dissipate into the surroundings. "What a trigger happy little bastard." Suffice to say, Vasili getting shot wasn't entirely expected.

Giselle's joining in saves Vasili from Felix's attempt at a would be pistolwhipping. He's in the middle of groping for a better grip on the Russian when the jolt hits him, and he goes rigid for an instant, before collapsing. He's blinded, stunned, and gasping for breath, but not entirely unconscious. The pistol lands with a metallic thud, but blessedly does not go off.

It's taken a while to sink in, but -


And as soon as Felix's body hits the ground beside Vasili, the half-crouched Company agent sort of topples over on top of him, straddling the other man while raising the fist of his uninjured arm. If things go Vasili's way, the trouble with Felix's breathing will continue for quite some time. The pounding of fists against flesh might be a valuable telling point as to the 'how' of the matter.

With a somewhat impatient exhalation Giselle drops away from the tree completely, letting her steps thud down the slightly downhill slope to where the other three are. "God/damn/ it. Stop it, Vasili," she snaps loudly at her boyfriend, though not because she has any conscious objection to Felix being beaten up. No, it's because she, perhaps alone of her colleagues, wants to stop the ostentatious business and get out of here. "The bagging is /done/. Let's get this thing out of here, yeah?" That is what she begins to try to do, roughly attempting to haul Felix's stunned body up by the shoulders.

It only takes a moment for the wind to be totally knocked out of him, though Felix is still trying desperately to fight, one hand flailing frantically for the pistol he's sure must be out there somewhere in reach, as he tries to block with the other. At least until Vasili lands a good few blows to the head and jaw, and the agent really is out for the count. He's entirely limp in Giselle's grip, bloody and battered. Really, the whole scene looks like a warzone, at this point.

If Giselle hadn't moved on with the bagging part of the deal, her partner seems to be a hop-skip away from doing it as well. Maybe he let Vasili get in a couple shots because he earned them, or maybe he's getting slow. Either way, Felix is out for the count and ready to be taken in. On the way to the big, fittingly black van parked close, they also probably have to keep Vasili from blowing his lid on Felix again; Church will let Giselle handle that part. Out of years of practice, the warzone that had erupted on the sidewalk in Central Park has disappeared almost without a trace in a matter of minutes. The only hint that something happened on that certain spot is the spray of blood left from Vasili's bullet wound, and the bewilderment of any poor soul that happened to look out a window and witness God's camera flash.

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