Umbrella Surveillance System
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Benny It is morning around 8 am on Monday, February 14, 2006 and there is heavy rain outside, the crackle of lightning is followed by a booming thunder. Does weather forshadow mood? Benny has brought two coffees and a bag of bagels for breakfast, he's here to visit Emma before she leaves for Scotland. He's dressed in his usual attire, his black waxed cotton Belstaf jacket, a black batman t-shirt, blue designer jeans and grey adidas sneakers. He steps into the stables, drenched by the storm but doesn't seem to mind it much. "Morning Emma. Glad you could see me, I know how busy your schedule is and with your upcoming plans." He gives you a small smile and would pet Shaemus were his hands not full with coffee and bagels. "Hey boy, how are you? Good boy."
Emma This morning, Emma needed to ne away from the office. Just, out of that room, out of those clothes, and away from the chaos of work. So she came to the stables, a peaceful place for her. One she doesn't get into very much anymore.

Shaemus os hopping about, happily playing with a ball. When Benny comes in he drops and and rushes his way, but stops before knocking him over. There is barking of excitment.

Putting the brush on the shelf - she was brushing Peachy, the lass gives Benny a smile and goes to take some of the stuff to help. "I - I'll always make time for ya Benny."
Benny "I appreciate that, Emma and here I brought some coffee and bagels for us." Benny replies with a warm smile upon seeing Shaemus playing. He sets the coffee and bag of bagels down on a table, then pulls out a dog treat from his pocket and gives it to Shaemus, giving him lots of rubbing behind the ears. After he finishes playing with the Newfoudlander dog for a few moments, he stands and then walks over to you. "I'm glad to see you are taking small breaks now and again. You are so buys nowadays, a lot more even then when you were working at the hospital."
Emma There is a little table in which Emma would go to put the drinks and food. Her coffee would get a sip, smiling around it as she watches Benny and Shaemus. "Yee - yer like, my best friend." She says in such way that that is more important than work. "I - I needed ta step away, catch my breath. A lot has happened very fast in - in a short amount of time. I'm tryin' ta mentally catch up, an', physically to." She just recently had her casts removed.
Benny "Your friendship means a lot to me, Emma but I never want it to interfere with your work or how you run your business...or charitable organization." Benny says in a respectful tone and takes a sip from his own coffee, while running his hands through his wet hair. "I am grateful that you haven't forgotten your own doctor's advice on healing for yourself." He nods in approval and does notice that you have no casts on anymore. Again, he may surprise you by initiating a one handed hug, giving you a squeeze. "I'm worried about you, quite a bit. I know something is bothering you but I didn't want to bring it up in front of others, especially your employees and colleagues. Is everything okay? Is that why you are going home?" He's being very candid and genuinely concerned.
Emma Emma tilts her head, listening, maybe trying to read what's being said between the lines. "O.. kay?" Remarks the lass, lifting a brow.

But he has her thrown off guard briefly, with a frown. "Ya - ya can read me like a book, can't ya?" The lass asks, looking down and kicking a rock idly.
Benny "Not really like a book but I've known you long enough to see how you normally are...but you aren't okay. The weight of the world is on your shoulders it seems, crushing you and your spirit. I can see that much." Benny replies after letting you go from his one armed hug. "I also wanted to talk to you about your plans...with Terrasave. I'm not sure how exactly you got invovled with them, but I do believe it is a good fit for you and your personality...well the old you." He leans against a post, crossing his arms and regards you carefully.

"But I have to say, that I don't agree with what you are planning...the secrecy, the research database, training your people for defence and it sounds like you are running some sort of operations." He sighs, "I've been a police officer for seven years, worked the streets, assisted on some major criminal investigations and then got into S.T.A.R.S. I'm not saying, I'm an expert but I've been involved with operational briefings, with experienced team commanders and worked with ex-miliitary personnel. You just graudted med school, not a year ago you were a med student and full of dreams. Then a terrible thing happened..."

He pauses and then stands from the post, uncrossing his arms and grabs a bagel. "We survived an unimaginable crisis, that nobody could prepare for and got rescued with Archene's help. But things didn't stop there, our lives aren't normal and you continually thrust yourself into danger trying to uncover the truth. Yes, I'm guilty of trying to protect you and shelter you from danger. It's my fault, that I didn't talk to you sooner about this and I feel somewhat responsible that I wasn't there for you when you almost got killed. But I'm trying to make things right the best way I know how." He pauses to take a bit out of the bagel and then takes a sip from his coffee to let you speak if you wish.
Emma Emma had returned the one arm hug, but then gone to sit, legs crossed, on a chair. Her clothing is more casual this morning. Comfy looking. His words are recieved with silence, he can always say anything to her, after all. There is a sip of her tea, eyes drifting down to the hard concrete ground under them.

"I - I am not makin' an army." The lass says at last, and sighs. "I'm -tryin'- ta figure out a way ta help. I ain't no fighter like you. This is my way ta help. I know very well what's out there, an' I'm bein' given a chance ta get a head of it."

Slowly she looks up though, eyes fixed on Benny. "I - I know ya see me as some.. lil' girl an' all. An' I'm not." Jaw tenses a bit, she looks down again. "Ya - ya think this is easy on me? I get ta be a doctor, new job, am bein' tossed around some." A hand runs through her hair, she stands and goes to fill a bowl of water for Shaemus.
    "I - I didn't know who I was, so why would it matter if yer there or not? I didn' remember -anyone-. All ya would of done is sat here, like Esa, or Bob." She shrugs.
Benny Benny listens carefully to what you are saying, not wanting to interject until you finish and quietly eats a whole bagel by the time you are done.

"I didn't say you were making an army but you are certainly creating something that is far beyond just a peaceful protest group, or charitable lobbyist organization and planning on what I believe is unsanctioned, dangerous situations that will be putting your people in danger. Not just that but putting a target are you own back, that is already big enough just from your personal investigations." He moves to sit down as well across from you and puts his hands in front of him folded together. "Don't turn into the very thing that the bad guys became. You can't fight fire with fire. You've done a big thing by releasing that video for good or bad, it doesn't matter now and you did what you thought was right. I just don't want you getting in way over your head and trying to set up some sort of counter-operation team. You don't have the training, you don't have the experience and although your intentions are good, it is a bad idea."

Sighing, he looks at you with caring eyes. "I'm glad that you had people around you who care a lot for you. I was never concerned about that and people follow you because of your passion. They see your spirit and your heart, even though sometimes you try so hard to hide it. That's why myself, Markus, Archene and James tried so hard to protect you. We know you aren't a fighter but that doesn't mean you are defenceless. Everyone has a role in life and your's isn't on the battlefield. I want peace, I became a cop to help people and I'm not a soldier. I don't enjoy fighting but I won't sit idly by if I see someone taking advantage of another. I wish I was there for you when you needed me the most...I'm sorry and I won't be around as much as some others. I know you are well cared for though."
Emma Actually, Emma laughs. "Tha - tha target is big, Benny, I - I don't think there be a way ta make it any bigger! Someone wants me -dead- out there, at - at this point, given that they failed once, they are likely ta try again an' even harder. I know this, an' accepted it. Because yer right, I'm no fighter, an' I'm bettin' it's a good chance they'll win." Grey-green eyes look away, to window, eyes taking in the rain.

"I - I don't know if yer seein' what I'm doin' right. I don't have plans ta go - go out fightin' or anythin' like that, not my job, or tha organizations. I want ta get information ta form somethin' those trained to can use. I - I got contacts, willin' ta help, but unless any of my - my own are goin' it's by their own free will. My job is ta tha truth for humanity, that's all."

Then, she is silent, sipping from her coffee, then deciding to look at him again. "Ya - ya keep talkin' like yer goin' an' never comin' back. Which is strange for a IT."
Benny Benny sighs once more, "I guess we will have to agree to disagree and I've said my peace. I know how you are Emma, the more I push for things the more you push right back. Just think about what I said, okay? Be careful." He seems a bit sad when you talk about the assassins winning.

"Information is power Emma. Remember that and in the wrong hands, it can be a greater threat than any weapon and some people will go to great lenghts to possess that information or ensure that it never see's the light of day." Yup, he's not quoting Star Wars on this one and seems quite serious.

He takes another sip of coffee and is almost finished blueberry bagel number two, because yeah he's the bottomless pit. "My life...is complicated and I am still dealing with stuff back home in Denver." All his words spoken are true, so there is no hint of deception there that you can detect. "I never said I wasn't coming back but I will be away for a lot longer period. Even though I won't be able to visit in person, we can keep in touch via email of course or phone."
Emma Her expression softens a touch. "I - I know yer worried, an I'm not.. tryin' ta turn TerraSave inta somethin' it is not. An' I'm well aware of spies, I'm keepin' an eye out, as best I can." She shrugs, and sips her coffee, having not yet touched a bagel.

"I - I know yer tryin' ta help, I guess.. I spent all life growin' up with four brothers who tried ta hide me from tha world, afraid ta - ta let me fall, or get hurt. You just can't avoid that in life, an - an not the ones we've had. I'm sorry if yer feelin' like that, I - I guess, I'm just tryin' ta be allowed ta make mistakes, with all of ya too."

Brows come together, she can tell he means that. "Wh - what are ya dealin' with in Denver?"
Benny "Family stuff. Nothing to be concerned about though, things have been difficult after Raccoon. My parents, they lost their house, dad lost his job and it is hard for him to find a new one since he worked for a corporation that has a very negative light associated to it. I'm trying to help them get back on their feet and I told them they could stay at my apartment for a while." Benny replies with a rather pensive expression. "Also, my contract here in Paris has ended and I'll only be coming here during my holiday time, which I only get two weeks out of the year. I'm still the new guy on the totem pole at work so, I always get the short end of the stick with vacation schedules." he shrugs.

He shakes his head when you talk about your four brothers and learning to make your own mistakes. "I get that...I really do and if your own family can't make you see...well, just promise me that you'll think things through okay and maybe ask for advice from Archene or other people you trust. Look before you leap. Nobody says that we want you to be some woman of action, running headlong into danger and carrying a machine gun. The support role is just as important if not more important in most cases. Knowing is half the battle, GI Joe - okay?" There is the comic book nerd stuff that he's known for!

"I may not be around in person but I'm always going to be your big bro, even from afar. Got it?"
Emma "I - I am sorry ta, ta hear that." Emma frowns when he speaks of this. "Yer - yer a good guy, Benny, ya know that? An' I've met my fair share of shitty men in my life." He's given a warm smile.

"Tha - tha only rush was that video an' it tore me apart ta do it. Sometimes dream are bigger than reality, an' ya run without seein'."

The smile grows a little. "I - I know ya will, yer one of tha very, very few I trust fully an' completly." The way she says that, says it all in how big that is. She then looks down, in a shameful way. "Yer - yer right to, tha - tha world in on my shoulders it seems. I.. I don't feel like myself, not anymore. Not - not after what happened."
Benny Benny see's that this conversation isn't how he wanted things to go, not when he's going to be leaving for a long time and stands up now, putting his coffee down. He walks over to sit beside you, then reaches over to give you a big hug if you let him. "I know." Is all he says and just holds you for a minute or two depending on how long you let him. "What's done is done. The important thing is how you move forward from here. Enjoy the time with your family. Pretend to freeze time while your there, really take time to feel their support and the world will go on. Trust the people you left in charge here to do their jobs. Try not think about work or any of the crazy stuff that is going on. Just be yourself, the real you and bring that person back. Promise?" He gives you a warm smile as he speaks.
Emma Leaning against him, Emma would go to, if able, put her head on his shoulder. "I - I hope ta." She says, softly. There is something on her mind, it can be felt in the brief pause, in that momentary silence. "I -" She stops a second, and takes a deep breath. "I - I was told I died, on tha - tha OR table. An' I can't get this outta my head. I remember being somewhere. It was - was warm, an' I felt loved, an' safe, an had peace. I felt it thro - through all of my bein', I was done fightin' an' it was my time ta rest. Then it.. was gone, all, gone. An' I'm here, in this chaos, in this hellish world." She sighs, unevenly. "I - I find it hard ta connect ta anythin' after that. I feel like I'm just goin' through tha motions, not myself anymore. I hate it. So, I - I dunno if I can promise, because, I dunno if I can find such joy as I did there. An' ta not sound corny, tha - tha only way ta figure out what it was, was heaven."
Benny Benny just holds onto you, providing as much support as possible even though his cheeks are redding a bit. "It's alright Emma...it isn't your time yet and there are plenty of us here to make sure that your going to have a long, happy life and watching Star Wars with us in Archene's old age home." He rubs your back gently with one hand, not speaking any more and is a bit choked up himself after you've shared with him a very personal moment in your life. The guilt he feels doesn't help much either and he's silent for a while as his own eyes tear up a bit.
Emma Emma keeps her head rested against his shoulder, a hand idly wipes away a tear or two from her face. Her own face a bit red. There is a sniffle. "I - I am glad yer - yer so confident in that." Because she doesn't sound like she is. "Is - is it sad that - that death gave me more peace? An' -" It's hard to admit, she pauses briefly. "Th - that I'd rather be dead than knowin' tha hell constantly rainin' down on me?"
Benny Benny doesn't speak and just holds you close. "Shhh...it's okay, Em. I know it is hard for you to believe or even understand this now, but everything happens for a reason. It would break your families heart and all the people that care about you to hear you talk this way." He has to be strong, for the himself and for you. He's seen this kind of behavior before in his previous job and knows that he just has to be supportive. "I think you should talk to someone else about this, not just us but someone professional." He then lets his arms slip down to grasp one of your hands. "Sometimes talking to someone you don't know as well can give you a better perspective on things. But you should take a break from work for a bit. Let miss Eve handle things for a while. Sound good?" He speaks in a soft, gentle voice.
Emma Emma takes this with quiet consideration. Looking down, she raises a brow when he takes her hand, cheeks redden a little. "Yer - yer right." She says quietly, head rested on his shoulder. "Pe - people dun need ta - ta hear me talk like that, nor you." This seems to be like a giant stop button for her, a moment in which she concludes that she will not burden those she cares about with this. Who indeed, wants to hear it. With her free hand she lifts her head briefly and pulls off a necklace, her trinity knot. She goes to hand it over. It isn't overly big, and has a circle around it. "T - take this, it - it is, infinite, spirit an' protection, tha - tha circle means unbreakable protection. Ke - keep it, as a - a keepsake, an' a good luck charm."
Benny "Just don't keep everything bottled up inside you." Benny replies and gives you a small smile. "Hey, I'm the blushy one remember." He gives your hand a gentle squeeze and then his eyes go wide with surprise when you offer him the necklace with the trinity knot. "Emma...you don't have to...thank you. It's beautiful and I will keep it safe, always." He takes the necklace in the palm of his hand and puts it on over his neck, to hang with his jade pendant. "There. I'm extra protected." He then pulls you into another hug, his own cheeks redding now.
Emma There is but a small nod about the talking to someone. Does her reflection count? When he says he is the blushy one, her cheeks go a little more red, and at this she looks down with a shy smile, and returns the squeeze. "I - I want ya ta have it." She says, grinning a little more when he puts it on. "It - it has meanin' where I'm from, ya'know, and ta my family. I'd be glad that ya - ya take it, it'll make him happy." She laughs, a little. "Aye, more protected." And so, he is given a hug in return.