Scene setting : The School
co-written with VunG.
VunG: Elissa was wondering how long it would take John to pick up on her identity, it would be less distracting if he at the very least knew her name if they had met. She actually barely recognized him, though that was mostly because she tended not to work with the detectives all that much. Once their meeting got underway, she would nod to Tommy’s assessment; in fact, now that she thought about it, it would probably be bad to stick around. She was still more than a little baffled by the lack of evidence of casualties though. If this was a battlefield, there should’ve been bodies, or at least signs of these bodies, and there was no way this was anything other than that. Either that or it was extreme live-weapons training… which she doubted. She was willing to overlook the intact windows, again she knew that there were some weird weapons out there that could do some serious damage without that… but the lack of bullet holes was absolutely baffling her. If there were explosives, the windows would be blown out and there would be no bullet holes. If there were bullet holes there would be no blown out windows. A lack of either… all she could think of was something really big coming through with a wrecking ball.
The more she thought about it, the more her mind went back to that… thing in the pictures. Could that be what was out here? Why would it bite buildings? Thankfully her thoughts would be dragged from that as she wandered the school nearby and she caught John’s bizarre suggestion of a government military action. After an amused snort, she quickly wrote a note and handed it over to the man, shaking her head as she returned to her work. *I’m pretty certain if the government wanted to test a weapon on buildings there would be less high profile places than a school in the middle of New York. Try again.*
But… sadly, they were out of potential clues, not without turning this place over, and as John would soon point out, it would be a bad idea to keep the commander in the dark about this. And she didn’t want to get them in trouble over this; that wasn’t what she was here for. At the question, she nodded gladly and went to join Tommy while they called in the situation. Once the two were busy, she’d sign to him while he was putting away his stuff, ~Do you think the… thing in those pictures could have done this?~ She didn’t look as panicked anymore, but she definitely looked concerned, and wanted his opinion. This was frustrating, because her expertise in weapons had completely failed her, and she had nothing really to fall back on in this scenario.
Razorbackwriter: Detective John Moss took Elissa’s note and took out his glasses to read it under the dim lighting. She was right. Why would any government agency pick a school to do its weapons testing? It was just not plausible. The problem that they all faced however, was finding evidence to pinpoint exactly what caused the destruction of the buildings. Tommy had already gathered as much photographic evidence as he could, but other than that, there was nothing else to be found on the ground. A site with no clues will make this a dead end investigation….or it would bring in every kook and whacko job from the cheap tabloids who would suggest conspiracy theories. The more Tommy thought about it, the less likely he would be to even show the photos to his editor. A story needs facts….names, clues. This had nothing.
As Tommy was putting the last of his gear away, Elissa asked him in sign if he thought the creature in the pictures did this. Her expression was one of calm and as though she was not discounting the creature in the photos that Frank had being very real. Shouldering his back pack, Tommy placed a hand on Elissa’s arm and then whispered to her ear. “It’s a strong possibility.. I mean, its size and the way Frank described it….something like that could have caused all this damage. But…if you ask me….something or someone…engaged it in battle. We just can’t prove it due to the lack of evidence.”
It was really like chasing ghosts, and Tommy was starting to feel like Fox Mulder from The X Files.
Detective John Moss was already on the phone to the precinct and soon about half a dozen squad cars along with the Commander’s car would all pull up at the school with their lights blazing. Some officers were already stringing up yellow police line tape, while others were walking around the debris taking photos and starting investigating the damage to the school. They were as clueless as the four that found the debris in the first place. Commander Brack, a forty year veteran of the force approached the four, as Tommy got in behind Frank….not wanting to be seen. Brack’s expression was one of disdain.
“So…what is all this then? Malone? Moss? Were either of you here to witness the destruction of the school?” Bracks asked gruffly before then noticing Elissa, who he had not seen for some time. “Well well well….if it isn’t former Captain Pourtales. Fancy finding you mixed up with these clowns. Oh….and super snoopTommy Xo, New York’s nosiest reporter. Seeing you all together at this school makes me think you had a hand in the damage. So…whose going to tell me just what happened? Hmm?” The Commander asked, folding his arms and waiting for someone to talk.
VunG: It was perhaps a little discouraging to hear Tommy’s assessment, mostly because she’d been hoping she was just losing her mind rather than have that aberration running around in their streets. However, the thought of something else fighting them was intriguing; if that thing was capable of doing this much damage… then what in the world was capable of standing toe-to-toe with it? It bothered her, and without a potential answer she felt very itchy. They needed a freaking exorcist or ghost buster or at the very least the Scooby Gang.
As the call was made, she’d go ahead and take them moment to pull out a small flask and swig a gulp of her whiskey, wincing as it went down. She knew that being drunk wasn’t the best idea right now, but she wasn’t drinking all that much, and she would probably need it to put up with that idiot Commander. As the cars came in, she went ahead joined the other three, smirking at Tommy as he hid behind Frank before shaking her head and standing calmly as they awaited the commander to deign to show his face. As he went to insult everyone on the site, she promptly pinched her forehead and shook her head with annoyance, letting out a rather loud sigh. She didn’t remember the man being such an imbecile, but then again she was usually just in the SWAT clique.
Snapping her fingers to get Tommy’s attention, she asked him to translate for her, then went ahead and spoke straight to the commander, nothing but a stoney expression shown to her former boss. ~I would advise against threatening or insulting us, considering we’re your only known ‘witnesses,’~ and she made sure to finger quote that last one to make a point, ~Second, we just arrived, I received an anonymous tip. Third, we don’t know what did it, but I’m pretty certain it wasn’t conventional explosives or firearms based on a lack of scorch marks, slugs, bulletholes, or blown out windows, so there’s your important details. Fourth, don’t insult your own men,~ and put extra flourish into the last one, her expression hardening as she glared at the commander. This wasn’t just something she would do for these three, this was her general reaction to any member of the force who was threatened, insulted, or otherwise acted against. She wasn’t usually a wildcat, but when it came to protecting the boys in blue, especially the honest ones, she was downright ferocious.
Razorbackwriter: Everyone knew that Commander Bracks was a hot head – especially Tommy since he was the one that had a relationship with the Commander’s daughter. So, when Elissa asked Tommy to translate for her, Tommy grimaced and then flashed a cheesy smile at Commander Bracks who was in no mood for games. Elissa…was simply brilliant. Frank and John both stood quietly as she defended their reputations and gave a perfect account of what they had found, or rather what they hadn’t. Oh her gestures, followed by Tommy’s translations showed the girl had lost none of her spark, and Frank for one was proud of her and even straightened a little in her company. John Moss just stood there, feeling kinda out of it, since he was called in at the last minute. The last line….” don’t insult your own men” was given with an extra bit of oomph and Tommy made sure to relate that exactly as it was intended.
The Commander gruffly snorted at what he had heard. One of the other officers to come up alongside the chief confirmed exactly what Elissa had reported, much to the Commander’s annoyance. None of those at the site had anything to do with the destruction of the school.
“She’s right, Sir. There is nothing to suggest an explosion, or causalities. The site is clean.” The Commander’s eyes darkened and he stared hard at Elissa, who had stood her ground and glared back just intently. Hmmph!” That was all he could utter as many of the other police officers were coming up empty handed. Pointing a finger at Detective Moss, he ordered. “Have your report on my desk at 10am. Dismissed.:” And like that, he turned on his heel and headed back to his car.
Moss let out a sigh of relief that the incident for now was over, but there was obviously going to be words said back at the station. John took out his cell and then gave the other three a polite nod, before he headed for his car, and started to call his wife to let her know he was alright. Now it was just Tommy and Frank left standing with Elissa. Frank had kept his silence, with his head bowed. It seemed nothing he did was ever right in the eyes of his commander. What he wouldn’t give to crack the case of the death of his partner. The school was a dead end in his mind, but Tommy….he had other ideas.
“Okay, none of us are going to make it through the night without a coffee. I say, we go to the nearest coffee shop and refuel, before continuing the hunt for what took Rory.”
If Elissa agreed, they would all get into Tommy’s car and head to Jax’s coffee house. As they walked, Frank spoke quietly to Elissa as Tommy went ahead to put his gear in the boot of his car.
“Thanks. What you said…meant a lot.” His eyes softened as he watched her walk along side him. She didn’t have to stick around and put up with the crap from the Commander, but she did….and that was worth a great deal of respect in his eyes.
VunG: Oh it was so satisfying for Elissa to see the Commander stopped in his tracks after that stunt he pulled. Honestly, the guy should’ve, at the very least, been trying to help his men if he thought they weren’t in the best state of mind, not berating them; and honestly she couldn’t comprehend the idea of Frank doing that sort of thing to his partner. She’d only met the two of them a few times before, but she knew that they were best buds, and if Frank had been sick enough in the head to do something like that, then it would’ve shown up on a psych profiling. It was pretty satisfying too to hear that the other officers were pretty much backing her up, intentionally or no; at least she wasn’t completely botching it up.
Still, she felt sorry for poor John, and would flash him an apologetic expression as he took off, giving him a polite wave. Once it was over, she let out a breath and turned to the others, glad to see they’d at least stayed there, even if poor Frank was so beaten down that he ducked his head like a scared child. At least they’d weathered that storm. Of course, now that she’d just shouted down the police commander without a voice, her blood was pumping and, like Tommy, she wasn’t ready to call it quits for today, not yet. At the reporter’s suggestion, she nodded emphatically and fell into step .
Of course, what she hadn’t been expecting was for Frank to come up to him, and thank her for her words. Truth be told, she didn’t see it as anything grand, more what came naturally to her and what was right to do. Still, between the tone in his voice and the look on his face, she could tell it meant a lot to him. Perhaps she was the first person besides Tommy and maybe John to show any faith in him. The thought was kind of heartbreaking. Smiling back, she placed a hand on his shoulder and shook it lightly, telling him wordlessly that she was there for him, if nothing else. With that, she’d go ahead and find her place in the car, flopping into her seat with a sigh and began cracking her fingers.
Razorbackwriter: John’s car pulled out of the parking lot, its red lights fading into the distance while the remaining squad car lights continued to blaze as morning was approaching. Sticking around the school was now no longer necessary. Their curiosity had been met with a dead end situation. A war zone with no clues. Slamming the boot of his car, Tommy checked Elissa as she found her place in the back seat and flopped in. The sound of cracking knuckles was her way of dealing with the stress, Tommy guessed, and he got in behind the driver’s wheel. Staying just a moment longer, Frank surveyed the area – memories of the night Rory disappeared mirroring the sight before him of all the cop cars and policemen looking for clues. Frank slammed his hand on the side of the car to let off steam before getting in beside Elissa and closing his door. Rubbing his hand lightly, he glanced at Elissa. You could see the guy was worn out and beaten down. Even his clothes hung on his body like they were too big for him. The guy probably hadn’t had a decent feed in months. Frank needed someone in his life. To shake him into awakening and to live each new day – not mourn what he had lost. But to do that he needed closure. The only way to get it, was to prove what he saw the night of Rory’s murder to be real.
Tommy’s car pulled away from the curb, and without word the three would head off to Jax’s coffee shop for a much needed cup of joe.