2007-08-15: DF: Scavenger Hunt


DFElena_icon.gif Gene_icon.gif

Summary: Elena goes with Gene on a scrap salvage run to help him collect various metals and parts that he needs. There is trouble, both are injured…but the point is clear that even if two Saints are outnumbered, the others are clearly unmatched.

Dark Future Date: August 15th, 2009

Scavenger Hunt

Contested Area, New York City

The area was a contested one. While many bridges across New York were destroyed due to war and the Storm of Apocalypse, some were deemed by both sides to be too important to be lost. Some were turned to scrap anyway in the bitter struggles that followed, but some remained strong. Currently on the side of the bridge further away from the city, where the armies of human tried to blockade the city, there is a truck.

"Most of the good scrap I've already taken," Gene admits as he gets out of the large pick-up truck. "Right now, just looking for stuff to melt down."

Pulling out the remote and pressing a few buttons, Gene turns toward his companion for the night, Elena. Usually, Gene goes alone due to people being busy and Gene being Gene, but for some reason she wanted to come with. "Heard there is some repairable hardware around the capital too, but I'm not really in the mood to deal with Homeland's best for just rumors." From the back of the truck, the Monster crawls out, ready to help with the heavy lifting at Gene's command.

Truth be told, she wanted to come along because she wanted to know how Gene was doing. Elena hasn't really talked to the somewhat reclusive young man one-on-one in a while, not since before she went on her solo mission. And she wanted to ask how he was feeling. These days, she monitored his tumor like a hawk circling prey. "Let me know what you need and I'll help you find it," she says. She's got a portable metal detector in hand, souped up by Gene. There are buttons, to specifically detect a particular metal. Existing technology, but made better. She turns it on. Unlike Gene, she can't distinguish various metals from one another by sight.

"If there are any computer parts I can recognize, I'll point them out to you and you can tell me whether it's worth saving," she tells him. She turns her head, doing a sweep around the area. Nothing, so far, her Ping ability stretching out to maximum range. "Anything interesting down the wire that you managed to catch? Aside from the President's kidnapping?"

She moves the detector around. She's got a garbage bag with her to collect valuable pieces in should she come across them.

"Everything. Gone are the days we could just throw money at stuff and expect it to work out. You can bribe Homeland patrols for weeks and they still give you crap," Gene admits as Monster takes point. Looking through the small screen Gene lets Monster glances about. He has IR vision, a simple safeguard to ensure there aren't any enemy Evolved in wait. It's not much, but every little bit helps.

For the time being, there doesn't seem to be much around. The vision and the 'pinging' don't pick up much, but that's not really a surprise. "The wire? It's picked up some stuff here and there. Heard a cell in Pittsburg got toasted. It was pretty ugly, but for some reason they didn't make a big deal about it. Heard that it made Homeland look bad for some reason. Think a lot of them were barely in their teens or something."

Gene tilts his head to the side as he looks to something in the distance. It seems to be an armored personal truck on the front. There seems to be a large hole in the front of it, like a large piece of artillery tore through it. Or a large object of some sort. There seems to be bloodstains on it, but no bodies. "Didn't hear anything about a Homeland getting attacked out here. You know if Alliance attempt patrol or something?"

"Gotcha," Elena says, and once her metal detector starts picking stuff up. She's got on thick, rubber gloves to protect her hands. So after getting to a big pile. She gets down on her knees, crawling around it. She doesn't seem to mind getting her clothes dirty, though she's definitely going to need a shower later. She watches Monster trundle off, doing its sentinel routine for her, and proceeds to take out choice hunks of metal and stuffing them in a bag.

"Are you serious?" Elena asks Gene, giving him a startled glance. "Oh my god…." She closes her eyes. Teenagers. No wonder HS didn't publicize it. "Do you know which movement the cell belonged to?" she asks Gene, tossing away a scrap of metal that looks too sharp, and thus runs the risk of tearing the bag. She picks up a blunt one, as well as a lightbulb. She smashes the broken thing to further pieces so she could salvage the tungsten wire, and puts the tiny filaments in a baggie.

She looks over at Gene, and squints at what he's looking at. She eases back, and sits on her heels. "….You think we could salvage the vehicle?" she asks, but the traces of blood are worrisome. She furrows her brows. "No….Alliance aren't total pacifists, they'll defend themselves if needed, but I don't think they invest much in that big of an artillery shell. That's more our style, not theirs."

"I don't think they were linked with anyone really. Just a group of kids. A few with powers, some without thought they could make a difference I figure. I think they tried to bring them in peacefully, but one of the kids got out of control with his power and escalated the thing. Or at least that's what I gathered from the report. I wasn't able to get much more that I didn't think was fact twisting." Sighing, Gene pauses, likely to remember the fallen. It makes for a long walk home some days.

Swift to advert his attention back toward the present, the young man looks over toward the metal treasure. "Suppose we could, if nothing else, we could use the doors and tires. Seems like it was hit with something hard, but hard to say what. I'll get Monster to make sure there isn't anyone trying to play possum. No pings, right?" As he waits for the answer, Gene just ushers the large killbot toward the truck, the wrapped limb pointed toward the truck.

"Nothing in my initial sweep, but it could've changed." She had let go of her control once Monster was lumbering about. Elena stands up, dusting her jeans and tossing the garbage bag over her shoulder. She didn't fill it too high up, of course, she wants to be able to lift the bag without using Boost. Boost had consequences. She adjusts her grip, and she closes her eyes, extending her 'radar' ability out to home in on human and animal signals. She waits for a bit, to get her bearings.

"How have you been these days, by the way?" she asks, glancing over at Gene. Her mental processes are taken up a good chunk by what she's trying to do at the moment. That doesn't mean, however, that she can't converse with the inventor.

"Doing alright. Still struggle with the usual." Usual being the phantom pains and the effects of the treatments. The medication isn't a perfect match and sometimes Gene feels a bit off after the medication. Top that off with the fact that it's losing its effect and you've got trouble. Gene's left out that the dizzy spells are starting to return. After all, he figures it's God's grace he got this far. If God wants him to live another few years, he'll find a way.

The robot moves toward the stuff, Gene able to inspect it all. "Concerned about what happens if our plans actually work. I mean, a lot of people are thirsty for revenge. It's gunna keep this war going longer if it isn't controlled." Is he talking about the Alliance, the Saints, or someone else? He's likely purposefully vague. "How about you? The guys crushing on you still not sure what the hell to do about it?" He gives a smirk on that, though his eyes stay on the screen.

Meanwhile, there seems to be nothing still from the area and otherl the buildings on the other side of the bridge, there isn't much close by that is more than two stories tall (At least two stories tall and not just shell of a building.)

"I see…..anything getting worse?" Elena asks, glancing over at Gene. She hopes he'll be honest with her in that at least. With Cass in limbo for now, she's been trying to take care of Gene the best she could by herself. Graduating from MIT had helped, she has expanded her knowledge about the human body, but she's still a far cry from an actual doctor. Still, she can't help the concerned look, though she doesn't stare at his arm. She's gotten used to it, even if it hadn't been easy for her in the first few months of it being missing.

"It's about to get hairier," Elena says, taking a step next to Gene. "Jack and Prime kidnapped President Petrelli. He's in one of our holding away stations." She glances over at him. "Keep that under your hat for now, okay?" She trusts Gene not to go spreading around, plus he's one of the few Saints who really appreciate the addage that knowledge is power. And Gene uses knowledge the most effectively out of all of them. "I'd like you to help me draft up some contingency plans in case things go South. And we should go over escape protocols, like wiping our electronics if we need to leave them behind."

At the small smirk, and when he, of all people, brings up men, Elena turns her body to the gutted vehicle. "Which one?" is remarked and somewhat dryly. She withdraws one of her pistols, and undoes the safety, as she starts moving towards their prize. "Nothing yet, but have Monster keep an eye out ever few seconds anyway. The National Guard have trained snipers after all."

Gene just gives a non-commited shrug on the pain, his artifical limb tightening its fist, causing the leather glove to give a faint squeal. As usual, he tries to deflect the conversation else where. Gene is almost always honest. The issue is generally if he speaks his mind. "You know me, I already prep killswitches on all my stuff. Even Monster has one for the limited stuff he has on a hard drive. As for things going South, depends what kinda trouble you mean. The holing down kind, we need to leave the base quick kind, or the 'we are likely going to die soon' kind?"

Gene puts the boy talk on hold as well. Always business before pleasure with the young inventor… If there's time for pleasure at all. Meanwhile, the Monster and Elena move toward the vechile. As the woman passes Gene, he just throws his arm out to try and block her. He shakes his head. Why would he talk about getting the damaged ride, but not have Elena check it out? Maybe he doesn't want her to work on it and have Monster do all the work. After all, they are having a chat. Paranoia is another option too. While other Saints might be annoyed with the time it takes to do a job HIS way, he tends to be the most methodical. As he often reminds though, when things go right, you just lose time. If you rush a job and things go wrong, you might not get a second chance to ever do it again.

"Have you managed to link your killswitches all together in one red button so we don't have to flip them all separately if there's trouble?" Elena asks. It's one of the things she admired about Gene, barely a week into their new dregs, and he's already got his stuff all set up and ready to die in case they need to abandon the Penthouses. While beautiful, and comfortable, her only constant worry about it is that they might go lax with security. Living on the edge kept people sharp. Comfortable surroundings gave rest, but it also dulled the mind at times when you feel secure in a time when you shouldn't be. As always, she erred in the side of caution.

"All of the above," Elena says. "Can't be too careful." She looks over at him and gives him a small smile, lifting a finger to touch the tip of it against his nose affectionately. "Learned that from someone who kept lambasting me for throwing myself headfirst into trouble back in the day." She means him, of course. Even back then, Gene knew the value of strategy. Now, Elena's life was ruled by it.

When he throws his arm out to block her, she blinks at him quizzically. "What is it?" she asks, staying the course. She rests a hand on his shoulder, to try and coax him to lower the arm. She isn't going anywhere.

Ever since he lost his limbs and returned to a world changed by hate and fear, Gene's been more than willing to leave this world. When Rome was ruled by the insane Nero, some new believers were more than willing to throw their lives away to be in Paradise. Gene is ready for such a place, but has too much work to do before he goes. No matter hard things get, giving up is never an option. Smirking faintly at the mention of days long past, Gene nods.

Strategy is an interesting beast, the combination of war and personality. Direct people like direct tactics. Brutal people don't care who dies as long as the goal is achieved. There is a reason why the Romance of the Three Kingdom's that the strategists and their personalities were so important. Gene is not direct, nor is he brutal. "One killswitch is a move of a desperate person. Unless I have to, I steer clear of all or nothing results. Better to have three killswitches that take out a third of the desired stuff, each with two minutes apart. This gives six minutes for everything to be destroyed. Hopefully swift enough if we require it, but enough that if something goes wrong, we have sometime to flee or at least stop the process." In short, Gene is concerned about traitors, spies, or saboteurs. He encountered them before… and he'll likely encounter them again. "I'll see what I can do for the home base though."

While Gene doesn't seem to mind the hand on his shoulder, he doesn't move the arm. Heck, he doesn't even mention what's up. He just has the Monster move toward the truck, using its good hand to start rocking the personnel carrier. Seems like Gene's trying to get it onto its wheels again.

She couldn't blame him, if he was ever honest with her about what he felt. That Gene was ready to go when he was meant to go. She wanted them all to go to a better place, and if they can't find it here, better for them to die fighting than just lay there and give up. Much like he believed, giving up is never an option. Elena watches Monster move along the debris, her lips pursing as the metal, robotic wonder starts checking out the car.

"Desperate times call for desperate measures," Elena says simply, quoting the familiar addage. "But I'll leave it to you. It's your stuff. You know me, I just wanted whatever your brain comes up with to be protected." Gene can handle the security of his equipment, she'll handle the overall for the Saints. "And thanks, Gene. Let me know, we can work on it together." That and so she could observe him too, physically. The last thing she wanted is to see him collapse. They had a lot of work to do, but his health came above hers though she never had the gall to say it out loud. She may be the heart of the Saints, but Gene and his technology were their shields. And shields were indispensable these days.

She falls quiet, watching Monster move. She stays behind him for now, and lets him do what he needs to do. This was a salvage run, and this was Gene's run. She'll follow his lead.

Elena considers Gene to be the one she needs to care for the most and Gene figures he's the one people should worry about the least. After all, Elena is the motivation for most of the Saints. Irony is never in short order in this dark time, that's for sure. "Of course It'll be a bit of work though," Gene reminds. He knows that it won't change things since Elena's a caring woman that keeps her word, but he gives the disclaimer just the same.

Monster continues to do his thing, and finally the personnel transport is righted. As soon as the wheels touch down though, four explosions go off. As feared, there were explosives planted on the ride, seemingly loaded in the tires. Assuming all Saints survive this little adventure, Gene will explain that the explosives must have been loaded into the tires and the pressure trigger placed into the shocks. Tires move, vehicle goes boom. If Elena's life wasn't in danger (along with his own), Gene might even be impressed with the set-up. Of course, Monster is the first to feel the wrath of the explosion, the metal beast flying right toward Gene and Elena. The young inventor just tries to lean back to avoid the flying robot, trying to take Elena down with him. Knowing the woman, she will likely be the one to react first and drag him down. Regardless of what Elena does, Gene's arm is hit by the flaming Monster. Thankfully, it's the fake arm, causing little more than pseudo skin to be ripped from the limb. Gene doesn't respond to anything for the time being, just getting over the loud ringing in his ears. While he expected this and was a decent distance away, the blast still is pretty damn loud.

If Elena would have her ping powers still on, she would get that suddenly three humans appear from behind the remains of the truck And then there is just two a second later. A man watches from the building, smirking as his companion reappears beside him. Both are dressed in army fatigues, styled for urban combat. "You are aware that those men are likely dead. That woman She's dangerous if the reports hold true," he states as he lines up a shot. A red dot appears on the truck and suddenly a couple of high powered rounds are sent right for the engine. Looks like Elena's fears were right. "She's fully realized."

"That's why I sent in the humans first," the second man replies with a smirk, just pulling out his hand gun.

Something was very.

The explosions engulfs Monster, even as Gene leaps to take her down with him. She doesn't react fast enough considering she can only detect human signatures, and not electronic ones. Gene was the tech guy, so he knows what to expect than most when it came to these things. With Gene's fake skin shredded, shrapnel and debris fly, one snapping and slicing against her thigh, and another cutting a thin gash on her cheek. She sprawls with Gene on the ground, shielded partly by the inventor.

However, her weapon is out. It was time to move, her dark eyes bleed into gold in readiness, prepping her body for a fight. Her Ping, having mastered the ability to use several aspects of her powers at once, is going haywire. They need to move, and they need to move now. "UGH!" she grunts, throwing her hand out after she homes in on the two humans that are making their way for them. There are other signatures, they're far away. But before she could do anything, she hears the shots.

It was like moving in slow motion. Using Boost, she grabs Gene, drags him up and throws them both away further from the spent vehicle, behind a large pile of scrap and throwing her arms over him. She braces for an explosion - but after that they were all dead men.

The young inventor reaches for his own weapon, a bulky thing that looks more like a hand cannon than a pistol. It seems to not have a conventional barrel, just having a pair of two small holes. As Elena picks up Gene, she might be able to hear a 'foosh' in the distance. It's a rocket. Gene doesn't really offer a response to Elena as she picks him up, finding himself on the ground yet again as Elena dives over him. Soon the truck is blown to Kingdom Come. The tracker will go off swiftly, likely alerting other Saints to the presence of trouble. "Need to figure out who's attacking could be Alliance trying to leave traps" Gene says with uncertainty. He doubts it's them considering how this is proceeding, but maybe it will be enough to make Elena consider what she is about to do. He knows what she can and can't do, but he can't make her do anything. Not when he's busy trying to get his surroundings.

The humans seem to be having a tough time too. While they are dressed in standard Homeland Militia gear and equipped with Hunter rifles, they aren't able to get a good bead on Elena before the second explosion goes off. They take a couple of steps back, one of them firing a shot into the ground, the dart sinking into the burned ground. Looks like they are trying to take Gene and Elena alive. Odd they would do that AFTER the explosions, but as said before, everyone has their own strategy to win.

"I won't kill them unless I have to, Gene." Basically, if it's them versus…well, them, she'll pick the Saints any day. Elena was NOT dying today. She keeps her body on top of his, and she closes her eyes, using her Ping ability to home in on the approaching signatures. "Keep down…" she says through gritted teeth. Her cheek is bloodied, and her thigh burned like the dickens. But she'll do her best to concentrate on what she's doing.

And then, they're in range.

She slams her ability outwards, the Ping used as a 'homing' marker and her own control surging forward, a single blast of pain administered to both humans dressed in Homeland Security gear - such a sharp, fast, and blinding thing that the brain shuts down from the imagined trauma. It was like a solid blow to the head….without there being an actual blow. The smoke is choking her a bit, but she finally rolls off Gene, gritting her teeth and leaning her back against the wall of debris behind her, clutching at her wounded leg.

"There's….two more. Distant, but I can feel them," she says, using her ability on herself this time to stem the pain. "Are you okay?"

The two humans struggle with the sudden and intense pain. One of them immediately drops to the ground, the other forced down to his hands and knees. The rifle clatters to the ground, the man more focused on getting to his feet than shooting Elena.

Meanwhile the two on top of the building lean over to look at the smoke. The teleporting agent of the 'Empire' frowns. "Get what's going on, Ron?"

"The link with the human seems to suggest that they are in a lot of pain. Was able to get a decent look at the young man, seems like he has an artificial limb or two. Seems rather advanced, might have some surprises in it. Get me in close to the woman." A taser is pulled out as Ron gives a smirk. "We'll be heroes if we can pull this off, Stan."

"Don't count your chickens before they hatch" Stan points out before he puts a hand on Ron's back. In a flash, they disappear and suddenly reappear behind Elena. Or more importantly, where she was before she rolled off of Gene. The taser is thrust out, but gets nothing by air. "She moved!" he points out, frustrated that his link to the human was not enough to get her current location. Ron's words fall on deaf ears as for some reason, Ron totally disappears. Ron sees where Elena has rolled to, trying to attack her once more. He leaps over Gene's body, either not caring about Gene or thinking him not dangerous for the time being.

With one movement of the knee, Gene makes him wish he hadn't done that. A foot long spike shoots out from Gene's knee, lodging itself into Ron's gut, tearing though his ceramic plating. "What the-"

Stan appears on the building he was at with Ron, already on the line to his higher ups. "Stanley Road reporting in… I just lost my entire team to a terrorist cell on Sector Five. I have pictures confirming the female scene in the chase last week and the freakshow that was bandaged up and shooting at our people a month or so ago. Unable to pursue, giving last known location of hostiles." Turning his back, Stanley figures that with a little luck, HE'LL be the one calling the shots on his team. Ron tried to be top dog… And as for the humans? Well, they're just humans: acceptable losses in every sense of the word. With a chuckle, he teleports back to his penthouse.

This Stanley Road was a dead man. Even as Elena moves too fast for anyone to get a bead on her thanks to her Boost, she's seen his face. She knows he could teleport. He doesn't know about the -other things- she could do with her gifts. It was the beauty of having something so subtle under her mastery and control, and having a wide range of uses for it. "Sonuvabitch," she hisses, getting up. She was bleeding, there was a gash on her back when she threw herself down and tore a slice through her shirt. But Gene…? Where was Gene?

And there he was, his knee-thing having impaled 'Ron'. She withdraws her sidearm, striding towards the inventor and the guy propped up by the instrument from his artificial leg. But she doesn't remove the man from where Gene has impaled him. "Are you okay?" she breathes to the inventor. And then? Rage. She rounds on the person that tried to kill her Saint.

There's a reason why she didn't remove the spike. If he's still alive, she'll intensify the pain from sort-of-bearable, to absolutely indescribable. She has questions to ask, and by god, he was giving her all the answers he could give her.

While one of the humans is still out like a light, the second one begins to shake off the effects of the pain. Taking the rifle up, he considers his options. Hearing Ron's cries of pain, he wonders what to do. Returning back empty handed is death. Fighting these people is death. Running away is death… The curse of being a mere human when the gods play hardball. Deciding that trying to win is the only option he has, he begins to race around the debris wall, hoping to get a good shot of the woman. After all, she was the one that hurt him, maybe he can get her down and then go after the other guy.

Ron just bleeds upon Gene, seemingly stabbed in the stomach. He is able to take it like a man until Elena begins her craft. He roars in pain, Gene turning his head away. The spike sinks back into Gene's leg, letting the man fall on him. "That's enou-" Gene grits his teeth as he feels something dig into his chest. It slides to the side, ripping across his chest to reveal kelvar underneth. Not enough to stop a gun, but enough to take the edge of off a knife. Ron's final attempt of taking someone down with him. While he's alive, it likely going to be a painful death unless something is done soon.

"I've been better" is all Gene can admit for the time being, his face showing that he's in a bit pain at the moment.

The other one's moving still.

As the other human takes a shot somewhere behind her, she homes in on him. Elena's gaze slides to the right even if she doesn't move from her spot. She doesn't need to see to know he's there. And then, before he could pull the trigger, she lashes out another mental slash, the force behind it so rage-filled it would feel like someone took a rusty saw and started cleaving his skull apart with it. Complete with hesitation marks.

She grabs Ron by the shoulder, and with Boost, yanks him bodily from the spike and throws him to the ground. The first thing she does is take away Gene's pain. He would feel it blunting, and then, fading - for now. She herself was bleeding in several places. But with Ron….she stretches her fingers out, and curls her fingers inwards, in a gesture, perhaps, of imagining something soft and vulnerable within him getting crushed by her fist - which would be reflected into his body.

"Who was your buddy, friend? I'd really like to meet him," she intones flatly, holding it for a while…and then letting go. "Tell me now and I'll make sure you get help."

Perhaps the Lachlan of the human world, he falls to his knees, but he doesn't pass out and he doesn't even surrender. He just grits his teeth as he falls on his hands and knees once more. He seems to be moving, though it's at a crawl at this point.

As for Ron, he knows that his human is still up and moving. "Can't speak. Hurt too much," he offers to Elena as he cradles his wound.

Gene finds his body a little numb as the pain receptors seem to be nullified for the time being, the young inventor just crawling slowly away from Ron as to get into a sitting position. "We need to move out soon, sure that there will be a patrol coming through here at the very least," he offers quietly. He moves to his remote, triggering his creatation. The sound of tearing metal can be heard as the large killbot begins to drag itself toward Gene.

"Surely you can offer a name," Elena says. "If you can talk that much. Otherwise I'll just let you bleed out. I've had medical training, I can keep you alive until your friends get here. But if you don't give me something, you're not going to make it that far. My friend here is right, we're going to need to go. Hence, you've got five seconds. I've seen your friends face. I have resources you don't even know I have. He'll be dead by next week, and he won't even see it coming. While you won't be able to save him, you, though, can save yourself."

She looks over at Gene as she nods, reaching out a hand to try and help him up. She doesn't need weapons to protect them, especially not now while they're active. Her eyes remain on the man she's questioning, however.

"I have no reason to trust someone that decides that being like Sylar is gunna make a difference," Ron offers, spitting on the ground since he can't reach Elena. The human merely tries to get up and attack Elena, but falls to the ground, clearly not able to do what Ron was hoping. There goes that plan. Still, death is death and Ron expects to die. After all, isn't that what happens when you lose in war?

Gene takes the hand offered to him, moving to the wall for support. For the time being, he's silent, figuring that there is little he can stay for the time being to affect the conversation more than he already has.

"You're honestly going to pull that card with me? Seriously? I was minding my own business with my friend here when you decided it'd be a rotlicking good time to mess with us. What was it in for you? A pay raise? A medal? A promotion? You had your reasons, but I doubt they were noble, so don't give me that shit. I've heard it all." Elena's voice is cool, the legendary Gomez temper, as Ali puts it, kept in check.

She walks over to Gene, sliding her pistol in her holster so she could help him up. "But since you're whining about some semblance of fairness, I'll give it to you. We'll leave it up to chance. Your friends find you in time? Good for you. You might get to live. If not? Hasta la vista. You should've known better." She supports Gene and turns to head off. "But that's it. If you live and I see you again? You're not getting any more chances. Like I said, you could've guaranteed your survival. It's your own folly you didn't take it." And with that, she'll try to haul Gene away.

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