2007-05-20: The Consequences Of Caring

Starring:

Elena_icon.gif Ramon_icon.gif

Summary: Elena returns home to speak with her father about the Haitian's message. Ramon, after hearing it, isn't happy and accidentally unleashes another use for his abilities undiscovered until now.

Date It Happened: May 20, 2007

The Consequences of Caring


The Gomez Apartment, Queens, New York

She comes home an hour later than she says she was going to get home, Elena closing the door behind her quietly and leaning heavily against it. Looks like the apartment is empty again. Hanging up her jacket and her bag, she walks to the kitchen, turning on the light and opening the refigerator to look at what's inside. Dragging out a pitcher of fresh-squeezed orange juice, she fills a glass with ice, and pours some in, taking a quiet drink.

Ramon is up. He's got his reading glasses on and is reading a book. He swings his legs around and sits up, looking at Elena over the tops of them. "Everything alright, chiquita?" He has no accusation: she's passed the age when hen can hold her to a curfew.
She jumps, startled, Elena whirling around to see her father's head poke out of the couch. "Papa!" Elena says in Spanish. "I….thought you'd still be at work." Duh. She should've guessed with the lamp on in that side of the room. She takes out another glass, and does the same thing, walking around the living room so she could hand her father the extra glass. "I…..well. Sort of." She pauses. "Papa, can I talk to you?" She knows she doesn't need to ask, but he looks comfy, and he has a book.

Well it was just a little lamp. He puts his book aside and motions her to the couch, ready to listen. He takes off his reading glasses as well and folds them. He says nothing in particular, but he's attentive now, like a dog cocking his head.

She sets his glass of orange juice on the small table next to him, Elena taking a seat and glancing down at her orange juice. "I talked….to the Haitian again today. I called him. Well, not literally but I found a way to leave him something so he could go find me if he wants. I just wanted to know more about…..who you and Manny are dealing with." She takes another drink and she looks over at her father. "Papa he….said….his escape. The killer's escape. It….wasn't an accident."

Ramon goes very, very still. He takes up his glass of orange juice, but he doesn't drink it. Then he hisses, "What the fuck is this Company, what the fuck, who the fuck are they that they like to play with people's lives so?" His fury is growing hard and fast, enough to make his eyes glitter with it.

"Papa it's not really them." Elena looks over at Ramon, recoiling a bit. He looks so mad. So very very mad. Even now at 19, she's still scared when her father gets this upset. "It's not them. From what I could gather, it wasn't…you know. Official. -Someone- made it happen. According to the Haitian, there's….someone….bad in the organization. I asked if it was a founder, and he said he couldn't tell me. But he called it…him. Whoever he or she was. He said he was a monster. There's a monster in the Company, and he was the one responsible for setting him free. But he didn't tell me who it is." She glances down at her orange juice again. "….Papa, he wants to talk to you. He didn't tell me when or where. He just said he wants to speak to you. Alone. And he said you'll…know when the time comes."

"I'll go to him," Ramon says grimly. He starts cracking his knuckles. "I'm half a mind to go get on their payroll until I can figure out who this monster is. No. One monster at a time. First I have to deal with his monster-on-a-leash." His last words come out as a growl. The room…almost seems to flicker a little, as if his very rage is licking up the walls like live flames. It goes away seconds later, and Ramon doesn't react like he sees it.

"What? No! Papa, no! If there's something….-weird- going on there right now that their own agents are warning outsiders about it, I don't want you anywhere near— !" And then? Flames. She didn't know how it spread so fast. It was just a flicker, a flash at the corner of her mind….and then suddenly gold-red tongues of fury just sweep over the wall and lick at the ceiling. She scrambles off the couch in a flash, tripping over the floor and sprawling on her side. Oh crap. OH CRAP. What happened? Did Ramon start smoking?? She needs to get to the fire extinguisher!

And when she pushes herself up on her hands and knees….the fire is gone. She looks right, and looks left. "…wh….holy shit…what the hell…what was that?" she breathes breathlessly.

"What the hell was what?" Ramon asks, blinking at his daughter. He reaches over to feel her forehead. "Have you been working too hard? Trying to take on the whole world again. I'll get you some Robotussin." Tussin! The poor man's doctor in a bottle.

"Papa! The walls! The ceiling! It was on fire!" Elena cries, and she's crawling around the couch on hands and knees, hunting down any possible incendiary devices or accelerants of any kind. "You didn't see that? But…" What the hell? What was this? Did she just have a vision? Did she see…THE FUTURE? But she knows her abilities were so not like that! So how…..

"There was no fire," Ramon says, worried. "The only fire that was here was the fire I felt coming out of my gut in response to what you were saying. You shouldn't be so scared of my anger that you start seeing things, chiquita. I'd never hurt you or any of the children."

She pauses, and Elena looks over at her father. "Wh….what?" she says, standing back up slowly to stare at her father. "What did you just say, you….you -felt- fire and…." And suddenly she saw fire. Coincidence? She reaches out to take her father by the shoulders. "Papa no, no I think….I think you did something to me." She pauses. "Granted you probably didn't mean to but I think that's what happened. Papa….I think you made me -see- fire. Fire that wasn't there. See? No blackening, no scorch marks or anything."

Ramon gives sort of a grim look and nods his head. Then he says, "What else were you saying about the Haitien, chica? I'll get in for you and Cass to test me later. That could be dangerous." Very dangerous. If a bus driver sees the wrong thing he could crash a bus as surely as Benji could.

"Okay," Elena breathes. She needs to talk to Cass at some point this week anyway. "….that's about it. He wants to talk to you. I asked him how I could contact him but he says you'll know when it's time. I guess either you'll be coming to him, or he'll be coming to you. I wasn't….privy to that information." Part of her looks relieved. The meeting had been risky. She could've walked into the apartment and not remember anything. But her faith paid off.

"If he has a leave I'd meet him on top of a moving train," Ramon says. "Nothing's happened except that vision of Dezi's death. I'm pretty sure I've seen a picture of a woman meeting this description. It's going to be messy. This is all going to get very messy before it's all said and done chiquita."

"I know," Elena tells Ramon softly. "He says he has to be stopped. It's common sense but it sounds graver when it comes from him somehow. I think it's the accent." And the fact that the sight of the Haitian tends to inspire fear in the hearts of Evolved, simply because he can nullify any special abilities that could be used for escape. And given his height and build, he's not exactly a slouch in a fight either. "….be careful?" she asks.

"He's not going to hurt me," Ramon says with confidence. "He could have just stepped out of the shadows and husked me out if he really wanted to hurt me, he wouldn't go through all this trouble of setting up an elaborate meeting. Hell, he could have grabbed you for that matter, and demanded I come for a trade. I don't think he's the enemy."

"I've…." Elena pauses. "Ever since that day in the Hamptons it just started to make me…." She halts again, falling quiet. "I have a feeling there's a few people who know or suspect. This really isn't the first time I've heard of an agent go against Company wishes. I think some of them deep down know something's up too. I just think right now the Haitian's more knowledgeable about it. He's not saying anything though."

"I think his way is to say exactly what he thinks needs to be said, no more, no less." Ramon says. He stands up and paces, then downs his orange juice. "Chiquita, how is your job going?" He has to divert himself, briefly, away from the agitation, lest he do something else he doesn't mean to do.

"My job? It's going great. The merger between Evosoft and Lancaster Electronic's in full swing, I think they're getting approval from the SEC right now and seeing if they'll be in compliance with the federal antitrust laws," Elena says simply, watching her father, still, with amazement. He made her SEE THINGS. And it was different. More vivid, it's unlike the delusions she gives someone when they're 'high.' "So the media relations department has been pretty busy. How was your date with Dezi?"

Ramon's hand drops down to touch the ring on his left hand, brushing back and forth against it. "Good. It was good. It was good." He nods his head a few times. "I think it went well. I … yeah." He looks down and looks up again. "She's a good lady." He doesn't seem entirely comfortable.

….he went on a date with Dezi with his wedding ring still on? Then again Ramon hasn't been 'in the circuit' for a while. Elena peers at her father. "….what's wrong?" she asks. It went 'good'. Not great or anything? And why does he look like he has to pee?

"It went better than good," Ramon admits. "Not what I expected but I enjoy being with her." He stands up and shakes his head. "I don't think I should go back out with her." Out of the loop is not the entire problem here by a long shot. "Not like that."

"Well that's good. I was getting a little worried about you in terms of that stuff anyway. I don't…like seeing you lonely, Papa," Elena confesses, looking somewhat embarassed in admitting it. But when he says the last, she blinks. "……..wait, what?" she says, blinking. "But if you like her, and she likes you, then…why not?"

"It's a betrayal of Catalina's memory," Ramon says harshly. "I should not be dating other women. Or kissing other women. I should be focusing right now. I haven't even avenged her yet. What kind of an asshole goes kissing other women when he hasn't even avenged his wife's death?" He clenches his fists and goes walking into the kitchen. "She's not even anything like Catalina."

"……..Papa….I'm sure that….Mama would want you to be happy," Elena says, standing up from the couch to follow her father to the kitchen. "It's been three years, she wouldn't want to see you lonely. And it's not like you don't love her any less. You always will, I think she knows that." Yes. Present tense. Elena believes in heaven, and her mother's in it, damn it. "And…." She doesn't want to say it, but Catalina probably would've disapproved this entire avenge her plan too.

"And what?" Ramon demands, turning to look at Elena. He has tears in his eyes all of a sudden, though he doesn't let them fall. "And now she's having a vision of her own death that I probably caused. I got her wrapped up in this. So he's going to come, and if I can't stop it, he's going to kill her too. I haven't stopped him. I should have followed the puppet. Or done something."

"Papa, you can't think that. We're going to stop it," Elena says, and she can't help it. Her heart breaks a bit at the sight of her father's tears, and she can't help but hurry towards him so she could hug him tightly. "This isn't your fault! Dezi…she came to your rescue. That's how she got involved. And -I- brought her home here, so…..it's no one's fault, Papa. These are just the consequences of caring. But you can't believe this is your fault. It's not."

Ramon shuts it all down quickly. He wraps his arms around his daughter. "You're so much like her," he says softly. "So much. She'd be so proud of you, chiquita. So proud." He looks up until all of that unmanly wet stuff goes away, and when he looks down it's all gone.

"I know….I try….to be what she would've wanted me to be. I'm not like you or Manny. I doubt my ability to hold my own too much," Elena says softly. "So….I honor her memory in other ways." She pulls away so she could look up her father's face. And she can't help but smile. "So long as you're proud of me too, si?" Seriousness softens her expression. "We'll save Dezi. You and me and Manny. She saved you twice. It would be a disservice not to return the gesture."

"I'm always proud of you. Always have been, always will be. I wish you'd quit putting yourself in danger but I've resigned myself to the idea that you have too much heart for me to ask that of you," Ramon says gruffly. "You've got a much better pulse on all that's going on than I do. I could see you stopping this tornado thing you and Cass were on about, but I can't see it out of me or Manny."

"So if I manage to help save the city does that mean I can get married before I hit forty?" Elena quips, beaming innocently at her father. She reaches up to cup his cheeks with both hands, and tug him down gently so she could kiss his forehead. "I only do what I do because I don't want anything else to happen to us," she says simply. "That I didn't get from Mama. That, I got from you."

"Who's going to feed me if you go and get married?" Ramon grumbles. But he's joking. "Is this why you want me to be with Dezi? So you'll be certain that I'll be well fed on avocado sandwiches and fondant and you can go traipsing off into the sunset with Walker or Petrelli or God knows who else?"

Eric? Peter? -What-?! "Wh— WHAT?" Elena blurts out. "I just want your reassurance that you or Manny won't kill anyone and…..honestly I want to get married before I'm -forty-. I'd be too old to have children then, and I want children. Don't you want to be the grandfather of potentially powerful psionic children destined to take over the world?" she asks, planting her hands on her hips and giving her father a mock-glare. But she's joking as well, and she gives him a small smile. "And I want you to be with anyone who would make you happy. That's all I want, Papa." She pauses. "…..just. Warn me ahead of time if you two decide to…uh." Well, she can't SAY IT. This was her FATHER.

Ramon says an eloquent elipse as he stares at his daughter. Then he crosses himself. Good Lord. He's not married yet for heaven's sake. "Go to bed, young lady," he grunts. "You're tired, making talk like that."

She beams at Ramon innocently, yet another glimpse of the more mischievous side of Catalina living on (unfortunately) in this younger, and somewhat crazier version of her. Elena leans over, and lightly pecks Ramon on the cheek, before turning around to head for her room. See? Like a good girl, she still goes to her room when her parents tell her to. "Goodnight, Papa."

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