2009-10-11: When Hunters Become The Hunted

Starring:

Elena_V4icon.pngGene_V4icon.pngCharlotte_V4icon.png

Guest Starring:

Alpha Protocol Hunters

Date: October 11, 2009

Summary:

One wrong move sends a veritable army against Elena, Gene, and Charlotte. Takes place right after To Catch A Killer.


"When Hunters Become the Hunted"

PREVIOUSLY ON HEROES…

Out of the woods, and back into the city…

Perhaps.

Or so they think.

By the time the trio have geared up, and once Charlotte teleports them back into where they might find Emily Caulfield, they're treated by rather dusty, long-untouched, and unfamiliar surroundings. It could be a, as they say, a ghost town.

A dusty, decrepit wooden building no larger than a minihome has been abandoned here for a long time — at least since the 1940s. It's situated along a forgotton dirt road in the middle of nowhere, sitting not-so-prettily in the midst of wide, open space of sparse grass, a few spindly autumnal trees made naked by the elements they're subjected to, and a few outlying buildings. In the distance is greener grass and farmland. LEWIS RAILYARDS, an aging sign declares above the door. NEW YORK HISTORICAL SITE, a sign on a post declares further in front of the ragged steps leading into the building. By the looks of it, the history has been neglected.

The only hint of modern intervention is a traintrack that winds past close-by. The rails are slick and used. The train station may have been abandoned, but this is still a train route. Not a regular one, but it works. At present, a black and tarnished metal train with many clunky, boxy, unmarked cars is sitting stationary.

Elena shakes her head a little bit, taking a step back and falling right into the dark, peering around only to find herself in this abandoned train station. She doesn't dare use a flashlight, and anyone who tries will get a dismissive gesture and a look. But to the nearest person, her tone drops low, and gestures to the train sitting stationary on the tracks.

"The doors are bolted," she murmurs.

"Where the hell are we?" Gene offers softly as they appear in the middle of nowhere. It's enough of a shock to make him curse. Moving with the two ladies in a crouch (like ninja), he inquires, "Maybe if we knock, they'll open the door for us?" The low tone of his voice makes it hard to tell if he is being serious or not, but even as he says it, he tries to see if there is any sign of people around, something to suggest where they are or what is going on.

Charlotte opens her eyes, looking around the area - looking for this girl. "Well she can't be but a few feet away from us - I never miss more than that." She too walks up toward the car, standing on her tip toes and peering in. "If I were a vagabond, I'd be asleep inside. Just…stay put, alright? I won't be a minute." Charlotte steps back from them, and already she starts to fizzle and fade away, in a matter of seconds dissapearing entirely - to reappear inside of the train car….

Somewhere in Upstate New York

As Charlotte disappears from sight, Gene and Elena are left alone. In an unfamiliar, inhospitable place such as this, however, there's always the question of: or are they? Off to the pair's far right, behind the historical train station building, flashlight beams pierce the darkness. They're haphazard, routine, not searching. A faint glow emanates from that area along with the vague outline of the door of a large army tent. A few voices shout obscure orders in the distance.

Overhead is the thrum of a helicopter.

Meanwhile, inside the train…

The interior of this car is the length of an average train car that has been gutted and affixed with sturdy structures that serve a very utilitarian purpose: to hold prisoners. It's dark and it only as much as is needed to see by, only barely. Metal seating, bench-like, runs along both thick, corrugated metal walls, individual seats separated by armrest blocks. Each armrest is welded with a metal circle through which restraints are to be tied to. The doors on either end are thick and bolted.

Lined up along one wall are restrained captives dressed in orange jumpsuits, black hoods over their slumping heads and faces, contraptions strapped to their chests from which a tube extends into their hoods. A guard dressed in black tactical gear — bullet-proof vests, BDUs, helmet — and holding a taser gun at the end of the car suddenly shouts. One of these things is not like the other: Charlotte. "Hey!"

"Wait! Charlotte!" Elena hisses, taking a step forward, but it's too late. The waitress vanishes. She bites back a curse, closing her eyes and taking a deep breath to rein in her temper. A hand comes up, to preemptively snag Gene before he even thinks about getting anywhere closer to the train. "Stay put," she mutters under her breath, closing her eyes and extending her senses outwards to its maximum range, to try and pinpoint just how many bodies are in the vicinity…

Little blips, sparks in the dark. This is what she sees whenever she closes her eyes and uses this particular aspect of her ability. She doesn't need to, however, when flashlight beams cut through the dark, lashes snapping open and dragging Gene further into the darkness, if he'll let her. Just then, there is a shout, from inside of the train.

"Sonuvabitch!' she hisses under her breath. What was this place? Who was that?! She bites back another, more vehement curse. She should've told Charlotte to look through the windows first before she even—

Oh, god.

Her grip tightens on Gene. "There are about a dozen bodies in the train," she hisses. "Including Charlotte. There's close to twenty other people in the area. I can't stop them all, Gene, we have to get Charlotte and go."

As Charlotte begins to speak, Gene tries to reach out to her as he begins to speak in his digitally altered voice, "Charlotte, no, we have no id-" And she's gone. Thankfully for Elena, the Snake Eyes helm keeps the LOOK OF SHEER UNHAPPY to himself. Then the young Hispanic announces how much trouble they are, though he doesn't appear to be planning to run off on his own. Of course, seeing signs that the US ARMY is here is enough for that.

Pulling out miniature propane torch from his utility belt of custom made goodies, he flicks it on before standing over it, trying to use it to open the door. Of course, he stands in front of it as best he can, trying to use his body to shield as much light as he can. "Charlotte fails at Teamwork 101. We are supposed to Stay. Together. This is how freaking horror movies start. Thankfully for me, I'm a virgin." Most people would be ashamed of that fact, but Gene isn't. More so when if it helps prevent him from beginning mauled by secret experiments by the government that he assumes are evil and currently in the process of breaking out. Hopefully, Charlotte will be reappearing soon. If not, Gene is clearly planning on going in after her. Leaving people behind isn't his thing.

"RUN!" Charlotte's voice shrikes from the train car, and already she is teleporting back to get everyone the hell out of here. But it doesn't quite work as planned - for just as she starts to dissapear, the wires of the tazer embed themselves in her belly, and it haults her teleportation process instantly, bringing the girl to the ground with another shriek and a thump. At the very least, she manages to make her shriek sound like something words. "Run, plea-" but her words are cut off by another quick shriek and gasp, accompanied by the tictictic sound a tazer makes when it's being activated.

The train guard certainly didn't hesitate. As Charlotte is hit with his taser bolt, he lowers his weapon and begins speaking into a comm device removed from his belt. "We have a level one emergency, I repeat, level one emergency, intruder detained, scan the area…"

Flashlights immediately begin to skim over the area outside like a rave party. Boots thump on the ground, approaching the train. An engine rumbles to life and doors slam. Orders bark more loudly from the tent.

She bites back another curse, when Gene whips out his blowtorch to go and grab Charlotte. Elena backs up, eyes shifting to the left, and then right, keeping a bead on the signals in the periphery that are gradually starting to converge in their direction. "Gene if we get caught there's no way we're going to get her back. We have to leave her." And with that, she reaches out to try and grab the genius's arm. As formidable as she is, she can't stop them all. Not like this, not out in the open when everyone can spread themselves out far enough out of her range to render her ineffective - the element of surprise was hers, and she would like to keep it that way. Already she's pushing, to look for a gap, a direction to run.

The death of Plan B only gets a soft whisper from Gene. "No."

Gene knows Elena's words are true. He can't afford to cry, he can't afford to worry, and he needs to think. Getting to Charlotte is likely impossible for now, so Elena's words are followed and he already is trying to think best course of action. "Getting away on foot is going to be hard. If we can get around them, get to one of their jeeps if we can or that helicopter if we have to… I can handle the rest. If not, we need to hoof it fast. Trusting you to lead the way," Gene states as he puts away his torch, pulling away from Elena's grasp. While he has night vision in his helm, it isn't good if they shine lights right in his eyes. He keeps his hands in the Spider-Man position, clearly ready to use his wrist tasers if needed.

She looks around them, narrowing her eyes. Elena keeps her grip on his arm, but she doesn't leave yet. "Gene, I want you to look at this train and tell me whether it's functional. That they're going to use this vehicle. This train station is abandoned… it's supposed to be but if they're using this thing as a transport we can use the pin you gave me before we bail. We can at least know where it goes." She's still looking for a direction, her gaze sharpening and her hand clenching on one side, preparing herself to harm people as necessary. But she'll wait for Gene's assessment.

Although Charlotte is still in the land of the living, she's not doing anyone there too much good. She fizzles, once or twice, as though she might be considering teleporting, but she never gets anywhere close to the amount of power and strength needed to do that. So isntead, she lays there, unable to move her muscles in any useful way. Maybe a few twitches and flails in the direction of the guard, aimed to slow him up from whatever he might be doing, wanting Elena and Gene to have the chance to get away. "S-stop…" She grumbles, drools at the man, letting her eyes adjust. One of the few things she can do is see so she's doing that as much as she can.

The guard in the train kneels by Charlotte and reaches into his back pocket to pull out a strip of plastic. He's a young guy; fresh out of some Academy or another, perhaps. He rolls the woman over and restrains her wrists.

Vehicles speed toward the train. The distance between the military tent, the train station, and the train itself is nothing that can't be traversed in under a minute — it's a close-knit grouping, all told — and the black shine of a hummer and a van is quickly evident. Their rumble is louder and they're fast over the flat terrain. Another vehicle circles around the station, aiming to cut off the escape route to the left.

The helicopter above gets closer, stirring up dust. Its spotlight turns on, skims over the train a few times, and lands squarely on Elena and Gene.

Figures in black gear begin to pour out of the hummer and van, armed. The previous passenger of the hummer wastes no time in firing a taser bolt at the pair of intruders.

"If we can get out of here, I can know where it goes. Escape is first priority," comes the swift reply. This is government. Government has a paper trail. Of course, he hears the hummer drive up. "Shit!" he exclaims as he weaves, finding a tazer close to where his arm use to be. Too far away for his own non-viloence weapons, Gene pulls out his .22 pistol, trying to take a few shots at the helicopter's spotlight. It may be small, but at least it's accurate. As he shoots, he backs away without looking assuming that Elena will be guiding him or handling the people of the hummer.

Oh no they don't.

As the single hummer and van squeal to a stop, and get out, she swipes her hand in the air, her radar ability locking on her targets and sending a mass wave of excrutiating pain sent on multiple targets in an attempt to take many of them down as fast as possible. With Gene jerking out slightly, Elena's dragged along. The timing is fortuitous, when the tazer slams into the metal where she had just been. She doesn't waste any time running. "This way!" she yells, locking onto the space where she doesn't sense any signals. If they're hoofing it, they're hoofing it - in Upstate New York, there were more leaves, trees, miles in which they could hide if they can get there.

Charlotte has no choice but to comply as she's rolled over, her face pressing into the cold, hard metal of the bottom of the train car. She shakes her head, twitches agian, but still has no control over her muscles. "Stop, please," she murmers, her worlds slurred as though she'd had enough alcohol to numb her speech patterns. Of course, this is further numbed by the mask over her face - words have a hard time getting through fabric. Indeed, at this point the guard might be able to tell that she's a woman, but little else.

A metallic DINT! sounds even above the noise of the propellers and engine above. The helicopter weaves to one side, rocking in the air.

Inside the train, the guard hauls Charlotte's mask off and squints, as though almost … recognizing her. Charlotte, however, wouldn't have seen this man before in her life.

Outside, another taser gun is fired from another of the agents, but it hits the ground Gene and Elena were occupying as its owner suddenly drops the weapon, aim thrown. The shouts and pained grunts and even cries of grown men and some women fill the air. They clutch their heads, their chests, some falling to their knees, having no idea what's going on—

Except that it means one thing. The driver of the van, stumbling out, mumbles into his comm: "At least— one of the trespassers— is a threat— has an ability— release the duster. They're getting away on… " he wheezes, breath taken away by the excruciating pain. "on foot— " He collapses, sweating.

The helicopter's wind tears up the ground more chaotically, its path a little erratic as it moves above the young woman and young man running. A strange hissssss sounds from above them. It's a bad omen: a thin mist begins to pour down from the heavens, spreading as it hits the air like a crop dusting.

Charlotte's brown locks fall freely as the mask is removed, and a few fall across her face, but thank god they don't get in the way of her eyes. She stares right up at the guard, the stranger, but slowly, she's begining to get her motions bakc. Not enough to teleport - not that it matters that there's Hatian gas everywhere, but still. "P-please don't…don't do this…." Her words, too, are forming a bit easier. She still sounds liek she had one too many Long Islands, though.

The plan was almost perfect. Perfect. All it took was the error of one and now Gene is trying to figure out if he should make a final stand to give Elena time to escape or keep running. "This was plan, my mission… My fault!" Gene roars out, mentally blaming the freaky ass gas on his tears. Even with his health returned and then some, he knows the pair can't out run a frickin' cars and stuff. While the gas causes him to cough a couple of times, the full face helmet helps a lot with it. Seeing a larger tree, he pulls Elena behind toward it. "I'm sorry I'm wearing a helmet so we can't dramatic kiss, sorry if this all means I'm stupid, but you need to keep going." He pulls out a sqaurish object. It has a dial and a red button it on. "I'll draw them as best I can. If you get some attention, it's set to two seconds. Godspeed, Elena." With that said, Gene races off. Hopefully, Elena will go in a different direction.

His gun still out, Gene will try and fire on whoever comes his way, summoning the last bit of courage he has left in his being. If he gets caught, his life is over. He'll never be a hero. He'll be in The System, something he worked his entire life to avoid. The Company didn't know about him. The government sure as hell didn't know about him. Everything he worked so hard for will go away in a blink of an eye. It's a good thing he has someone to fight for, or those bullets might have been pointed in a different direction.

She pushes herself harder, faster, her boost activating and evidenced by the flash of gold in her eyes when the ability manifests for herself and Gene, adrenaline pouring into their bloodstreams and jacking up their bodies' capacity for flight in its maximum capacity. Senses are sharper, the body moves faster, is stronger. Elena hurdles over an obstacle, not even looking back as she tries to home into the darkness, to find a way out. There's no way she'll be able to outrun a van, even in this state, but hopefully she's managed to render them unable to chase, save for the helicopter above them. And really, they would need to land before they could even get their hands on them…

And, things suddenly shift back to normal, the extra oomph bleeding away. Her internal radar vanishes, the pinpricks of light that denote missing bodies vanishing, leaving her back in the present.

No.

Her abilities—

Before long, she's yanked, around the tree, feeling the trunk press up against her back. "Gene what are you doing?!" Something in her sinks, when she hears his words… and gritting her teeth, she nods, yanking the pin from her jacket and pressing the button. "Hide this on you," she whispers. "If you're gone… I don't know how else to find you."

And then, he takes off. Elena turns tail and runs in another direction, ducking into the trees and shadows and doing her best to throw herself in as many obstacles as possible, away from the flashlight. If Gene was going to sacrifice himself, she's doing to do her damndest to get out and find someone. Anyone.

The young guard kneeling by Charlotte finally speaks up. His words are reluctant. She doesn't look like a terrorist… "I have to." He starts to heft her up, lifting her, carrying her to an empty seat next to one of the figures in jumpsuits. "Sorry," he mumbles.

Some of Gene's bullets hits the side of the vehicle — a hummer, a van not far behind — that circled around the building to track the fleeing trespassers as it hurtles after him. The agents who doubled over in extreme pain thanks to Elena are slowly recovering and joined by their colleagues. Their efforts resume double fold, vehicles taking off in a roar of engine, tires and dust.

The helicopter's spotlight whisks over Elena and then loses her to the outcropping of trees dotting the otherwise barren field. For now.

But it finds Gene. The gunshot van swerves, taking chase after him anew. A man stands up inside and fires his taser at the masked man running away.

Charlotte makes a soft sound as she's lifted, but really she's light as anything. "No, you don't," she assures the guard as her back finds the seat. She looks up at him, her doe-brown eyes pleading. Maybe, maybe she can still get out of this, and help the rest of them….

"W-we were trying to stop a murderer. We didn't know you'd already stopped one. Please, just let me go. You don't have to do this. I know you do good things - you helped stop the murderer. I'm like you,"

The pin is put down the swiftest place he can secure it… Right next to the Gene Pools. Sadly, when he awakens after this, he will likley find it gone and feel very violated. But Gene has no time to consider ugly burly man checking his body over for bugs, instead he has far more unpleasant things to worry about.

The tazer slams into Gene's backpack, so it does nothing…. Right? Well, if it was bookbag filled with school supplies, sure that's what would happen. But sometimes, like in the Terminator movies, technology is not your friend. The back is a large battery back for the nice tazer gloves he has, so when it is hit, the entire thing overloads and explodes.

Getting a taste of what it feels like to be on the wrong side of Elle, Gene flies a few feet foward before smacking to a tree head first. The Snake Eye helmet cracks apart (originally designed for Holloween and kidstuff, not actual special operations mission), leaving the moderately burned and dazed Gene to sink to his knees, clawing at the tree in a vain attempt to get standing.

"God, please let her get away," he softly prays, the blood from the minor gnash in his forehead mingling with his tears. He tries to summon the strength to yell something to the oncoming agents, but it will likely sound something like this:

"zzzaaaAAAHHH-" *thud*

At least he won't have to worry about dealing with Gwen tomorrow.

She keeps running, and running, and when the spotlight yanks away from her and heads for Gene, she squeezes her eyes shut, a silent prayer dispatched to the heavens as Elena keeps running. Her lungs are burning, she has no help, it was going to be a long trek back to the city but she's willing to make it, to push herself, for the sake of her friend. Taking advantage of the dark, the shadows, she does her best to keep to it, to scan her surroundings and get used to it, to find a place where she could hide… but not yet. She has to keep moving. These men were professionals. Military. She can't underestimate their tenacity, their resourcefulness.

She suddenly stops, once the helicopter passes in a different direction, cutting a sharp swerve and the opposite way in which the chopper is making its circle, keeping into the thicket. She isn't dumb, the moment she gets out of that cover, they'll come back around and try to find her. She skirts around lengthwise, along the tree line, her path meandering, as random as she could make it, turning blindly this way, and that way….

She was getting herself hopelessly lost.

But that's precisely the idea.

The man settling Charlotte into her new surroundings just clamps his teeth down and tries not to answer her. "It's not up to me." A pause. "Miss." He's a subordinate.

The hummer and the van descend on Gene, surrounding him and the broken tree. The exploding backpack certainly seems to give them some insight into his terrorist intentions! Before long — one he stops convulsing quite so much — they swarm him, rapidly hauling his body up and into the back of the van.

The hunt for Elena is on. For now, she's safe, but they won't stop looking.

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