2007-07-24: Two Households Both Alike In Dignity


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Summary: Ramon and Nathan meet and discuss the wellbeing of their respective families.

Date It Happened: 25th of July, 2007

Two Households Both Alike In Dignity

Greenwich Village - Blue Hill Restaurant

Ramon Gomez is a little nervous about making the call. He decides to have his secretary call Nathan's secretary, because he has a vague idea that this is how rich people do this stuff. It involved a lunch invitation from the Chairman of the Board of EvoSoft to Mr. Nathan Petrelli at his earliest convienence. Ramon made his secretary pick the place, because he sure as Heck isn't sure what is a good solid rich person place in town

Considering he's mid-campaign and surrounded by peripheral craziness, this little meeting really could mean anything. But Nathan is still on time, dressed to suit his surroundings at the ritzy little daytime restaurant. Which, well, is mostly how he dresses a lot of the time, this time a charcoal grey suit and slightly loud tie. Shown to the allocated table, he holds out a hand to the stranger. "Mr. Gomez?" At least he recognises that name.

Ramon shakes his hand and rumbles, "Hola Senor." He's nervous, so for a moment, it's Spanish all the way. He clears his throat and waits for Nathan to sit down (he had to read Emily Post last night to try to get a handle on this stuff—/him/, /Emily/ /Post/), and when the man does he says, "Thank you for taking time out of your schedule to meet with me."

Not nervous is Nathan, at least not by their surroundings. "It's an excuse to get out of the office," he says, with an easy smile across at the man. Or at least faking the not nervous (or perhaps, wary) supremely. "So don't mention it. Things are hectic. What can I do for you?"

Ramon says, "Did Mrs. Petrelli fill you in on the dangers we uncovered regarding her and her children?" Ramon, far from wanting Nathan to sponsor this or that bill, is going to cut right to the chase. His single eye is steady and intense as he looks at Nathan across the table, and when the waiter comes he says, "Just bring me whatever. House special."

Cutting to the chase seems fine by Nathan, and as the topic is brought up, he can't help but flick his own gaze towards where Ramon's missing eye would be. Luckily, the waiter is a distraction, and he nods once to indicate wanting the same thing. Once the help is gone, he says, "She… told me what she could. Jack Derex filled me in on a little more."

Ramon nods his head several times, a momentarily ill look passing over his features. It's quickly drowned with water. "Your kids may still be in danger," he says quietly. "And even if I'm sitting on Evosoft and plan to go about it in much smarter ways, I'm not resting till your kids, and my kids, and everyone else hurt by this is safe. I asked you to lunch to ask if you would help shield me if this brings the certain kinds of trouble my way — legal or official or whatever — that a politician like yourself can shield a person from. I was going to ask this before I got Chairman of the Board, but now that I have it, it occurs to me," here he leans forward, intent, "that we can be a powerful alliance, period, and I might even have other help for you as well. But as one week ago I was an IT jock, I don't pretend to have a clue what I could really do for you."

When Nathan speaks, his quiet tone matches Ramon's, their conversation spoken beneath the general murmur of voices of patrons around them. "Whatever you need to do," he says, with a slight nod towards Ramon, "know that I'll help you where I can. I don't want my family hunted anymore than you want yours in the same position." He almost smiles, though it's a slightly bitter smile, the kind that accompanies a 'welcome to my world' sentiment when he goes on to add, "It doesn't help that both of us are under public scrutiny. But that's what comes with good resources, I guess."

The man expels a single long breath. He was obviously more nervous than he'd like to let on. It never occurred to him that there might be someone taking a picture right now, but there might well be. "Thank you," he says. He pauses to eat some of the bread at the table, for he actually is hungry, and that gives him a moment to gather his thoughts. He says, "There's something else that worries me too." He pauses. "Deliberate genetic engineering, from what I understand, isn't a very exact science. My kids seem okay so far, but I'm worried about the health of this generation of kids wrapped up in this thing suddenly degrading because they were messed with."

Okay, that has Nathan's attention, and for a moment, that amicable stoic mask falls to show a lot of uncertainty. It's clear to the perceptive that that definitely didn't occur to him. Outside dangers, yes, but that? "You'll have to forgive me, my science isn't what it used to be," he says, stiffly, "so can you clarify that for me? Degrading?" At that moment. the waiter occurs to bring about a bottle of red and two glasses, for which Nathan is grateful, picking up his filled glass to sip.

"I'm a computer guy," Ramon says, "But…when they try to genetically shove mice into birds and birds into mice and tomatos into corn, the specimens don't live so long." He clutches and unclutches his napkin. "My daughter's an adult, so she's fine, and maybe it's cause it was all done in — " he gropes for the proper terms and comes up with, "Before they were born it will be okay, but…I think it's pretty important we find these people and their fertility clinic and all their damned notes so we know."

"I think so too," Nathan agrees, grimly. He smooths out his tie a little, though it doesn't need it - call it a nervous habit. "This probably isn't the best venue to go into depth about this stuff, but— do you know the basics on these people? Location, names, whatever. I'm not sure I can go in guns blazing but with a little evidence, I could make life difficult for them, legally speaking."

"Not yet I don't," Ramon says grimly. "I have a tax audit on their serial killer agent, and that's it. But I'll find it, Mr. Petrelli. You can rest assured that I will find it." His single eye glitters with dark, bone deep determination, and the roll in his hand abruptly crumples. "And when I do, you will get it all as well."

It's not so much that Ramon makes him nervous. It's just that Nathan can relate, and that certainly makes him nervous. "I believe you," he says, glancing down at the bread non-roll, and taking another generous sip of wine. "I know you're deeper in this than me to begin with, but I wanted to thank you. I would have been there when you took Carter down, had I known."

Ramon considers that and says, "I honestly never considered it," he says. "He nearly kidnapped my oldest son, then called to let me know he'd kidnapped my oldest daughter and when someone came back with a location, I was all over it and mostly dragged the people who happened to be there in my wake. There wasn't a lot of thought. Too much rage."

"You did what had to be done," Nathan agrees. "And it's appreciated. This time around, you can let me know what I can do." And he leaves it at that, because at this point, there's probably not much more he can offer. "Is Elena alright?" it occurs to him to ask.

Ramon doesn't answer that right away, because he has to think it through. He says, at last, "I don't think they'll try the same method twice. I also don't think there's any sense taking chances. I would love to say that everyone's safe again, that all of that," here he pushes his plate aside, unable to touch it for the dark thoughts roaming through his head, "meant that it was done. But I can't do that. I think Mrs. Petrelli is safer. But I don't think anyone is yet safe."

"Understood." A sigh, and his wine is polished off. To Nathan's credit, he doesn't go for a refill, just leans back into his chair. "I'll take care of my family, try and do something to ensure their safety. Having Peter around helps, but maybe if they spent their summer back in Maryland instead, out of the city?" That sentence turns up into a question, requesting an opinion.

Ramon considers that. "I've moved my family upstate," he rumbles. "It might not hurt to get yours out of the city proper. The flipside of that, though, is something I've been considering, and that is there's nobody out there to see or call attention to a problem. It's sort of a trade-off. But if you hire an actress to walk around New York as your wife and then hide them upstate…"

The idea of an actress makes Nathan smile a little oddly, before he just shakes his head. "The public can excuse a summer vacation of some kind while I opt to stay in New York City. I'll think about it. Heidi probably will have something to say about getting hidden, anyway, and I can't blame her."

"She did strike me as one of those women," Ramon says. "Cotton and lace on the outside, but just wrapping up steel." Even if she was terrified out of her mind when he saw her. He adds, "Not sure my chiquita would really befriend any other kind." The check comes and Ramon takes it up, putting cash into it.

Nathan nods his thanks when the check is taken care of. "Not sure I'd marry anyone other kind either," he puts in, and once the check is finished, he stands up, offers a hand to shake to Ramon again. "Thanks for calling me out here." His wallet is taken out, flipped open, a card withdrawn and offered.

Ramon takes the card. "Thank you," he says. He pauses. He doesn't have new business cards yet. So he takes out his old one and circles the cell phone number on it. "That's the only thing right on that at the moment," he says. He also hasn't memorized his new office number, but that's okay.

"Thanks," Nathan says, glancing the card over and pocketing it as well. "We won't even have to speak code through our secretaries. Believe me, that becomes a pain."

Ramon looks vaguely embarrassed as he tucks the card into his wallet. "I didn't want to—" This all trails into the Ramon signature statement, which is to say he lets out an incoherent grunt and resorts to nodding. He has used up his Word Quota for the evening.

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