2007-04-23: What Price, Friendship?

Starring:

Claudine_icon.gif Elle_icon.gif

Special Appearance by: The Haitian

Summary: Elle arrives at Kirby Plaza after receiving a telephone call from her father requesting her presence. She is met by Claudine. Not all is as it seems.

Date It Happened: April 23, 2007

What Price, Friendship?


Kirby Plaza

Elle has been uncertain about the Company, and her state in it. The look she took at her own file, not to mention her growing relationship with Peter and gradually-developing friendships, have made her less and less assured. But still, it's Daddy. Plus, there just COULD be a coincidence between Peter's OMGPAINTINGNEWS and the fact that Daddy called her up not 24 hours later to discuss a "very, very important assignment". So Elle walks into the facility with some urgency, heels tapping out a quick beat on the floor.

It's Claudine that meets Elle in the corridor. "Miss Bishop," she greets, flashing her a tight lipped smile. "Your father is caught up in a meeting, he asked me to take you to briefing. Follow me, please?"

Elle nods to Claudine. "All right." she says simply. She's seen the other woman about before. So she starts on her way down the hall, following her to wherever she leads.

"We're very pleased you could join us on such short notice, Miss Bishop. Your work with Peter Petrelli has been incredibly beneficial." Claudine pauses for a moment. "For… both sides involved." She turns a corner, leading Elle toward a secured meeting room. "I trust all is going well for you?"

Elle nods once. "So far." She's not about to give up any information to a minor functionary like Claudine. She walks into the meeting room with the other woman.

The meeting room, one of the smaller of its type in the building, is dim and Spartan, although what furnishings it /does/ have are of a handsome make. A glossy black table sits in the center of the room surrounded by high-backed leather chairs the shade of chestnut, over which a lamp hangs from the ceiling. The light provided is not quite ample enough to determine the exact shade of the walls.

It is notably missing the man Claudine is presumably leading Elle to see - that is, her father. However, this is not immediately obvious; after all, the chair at the far end, one Bob Bishop would normally sit in, a seat of authority, certainly has someone in it. The lovely leather seat is swiveled away so that its back faces the door, and it moves ever-so-slightly when the two young women enter. Then it's still.

Elle walks in, looking up to the chair. She forces a smile onto her face, and says "Here like you asked."

Claudine leans back against the door heavily, letting it shut with an audible BANG! "Oops. Sorry." All the warmth fades from the Filipino woman's expression, replaced by a sort of sadness.

Only once the door has given its answer - the resounding SLAM that lets everyone in the room know it's shut, thanks to Claudine - does the chair swivel around. The man sitting there bears no resemblance to Bob Bishop. The Haitian, his face a dark mask of neutrality, has his hands lightly steepled. The whites of his eyes shine in the dim room, and like the cream colour of his suit, are a sharp contrast. He simply regards Elle. Staring. "Please, come. Sit." He almost sounds… genial.

The blonde looks up to see the Haitian. Oh, this is not good. She immediately powers up…or more likely, TRIES to, as she tries to call her electricity to her hands.

"Did I mention you'll be working with our friend from Haiti?" Claudine's posture suggests nonchalance, quickly trying to diffuse the situation.

The room remains quiet. There will be no crackling of electricity today unless the building has an unexpected electrical fire. The chair slowly rolls backwards and, just as calmly, the Haitian gets to his feet and begins advancing on the Bishop girl, making his way around the meeting table without a word. To say he towers over Elle would be an understatement. He looms even more than usual.

Elle backs up as the Haitian stands up, considering quick options…and then it dawns on her. No one IN the Company would ever use that phrase -while they were in a Company facility-. He's always just "the Haitian". But she's heard that alternate phrase quite a lot lately. And she's heard it from "Candice?" She turns to look at "Claudine", her expression stricken.

"I'm just… following orders." Claudine presses her lips together, eyes glinting in the dim lighting with unshed tears. "Please don't try and fight. You won't remember it when it's over." When Elle says her name- /her/ name - she shakes her head. "Miss Willmer's loyalty to you surpasses her loyalty to the Company, Miss Bishop." That much, at least, is not a lie.

The Haitian does not once halt - he homes in on Elle without stopping, a predator's lope in his stride, though his face reveals nothing. Not malice, not satisfaction. His words are even further removed. "For what it's worth…" He reaches out, a large, long-fingered hand going for Elle's arm to draw her close, spin her, and keep her still with a strong forearm across her chest. Down into Elle's ear from over her petite shoulder, he whispers in his richly accented voice. "I am sorry, to do this again." He nods, then, to Claudine.

Elle screams now. The sudden forearm snaps her brain back into gear. "No!!! No, you can't!!!" Not now, it's too important!! She begins to struggle now, trying her hardest to get free. Of course, without her powers, she's a 5'1" blonde girl. Physical struggles aren't her strong suit.

A cloth comes out of Claudine's back pocket and she advances quickly on Elle. "Forgive me." The cloth is pressed over Electric Barbie's mouth and nose. Chloroform. The tears spill down Claudine's cheeks now.

The Haitian waits calmly, looking above the teary-eyed form of Claudine, at the wall behind her while the young woman in his arms struggles. He's waiting for her to stop struggling. When her form starts to go limp, he swivels a chair around and lays her gently in it; she might as well be a doll. After look to Claudine and another nod, saying simply 'your job here is done' in silent cues, the man opens his hand and brings it toward Elle's forehead. It is only the most recent of many times Elle has had her mind touched by the Haitian.

Elle struggles to the bitter end this time. Unlike any prior time, the world wasn't on the line this time. The paintings; Peter's vision. But…chemistry and biology are what they are. She manages to resist a few seconds, and then her struggles stop. Her eyes close, and she goes limp. By the time the Haitian puts her in the chair, she's long since unconscious.

Even though Elle's unconscious, Claudine remains, tossing the rag into a trash bin. "It's for her own good," she insists. "She has no idea how difficult things would be for her if she left." She raises her gaze to meet the Haitian's eyes. "I appreciate your discretion in this matter. You've scratched my back, let me know when I can return the favour." The tears are wiped away and a deep breath banishes the pity. And maybe even some of the guilt.

Moving his hand away from the small blonde after several moments of intense focus, The Haitian wordlessly acknowledges Claudine with a respectful inclination of his head. Then, he scoops up Elle with an arm around her shoulders and under her knees and carries the lightweight danger to society out of the room.

And she's about to be a lot more dangerous when she wakes up in her daddy's office minus some key memories.

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