The Bell Tolls - TBT Act 1 - Cold Case

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Description: In a data center located in Mexico City, Rashid hopes to find his friend--or at least, traces of her. Unfortunately for him, Kolin's already come and taken the information he might need... how can he get it from her?

For quite some time Rashid has had a mission. To find his friend who was kidnapped. It hasn't been an easy task as he has not had any real leads involving her. In the meantime he has been finding ways to test himself to make sure he was ready for whatever threats he may come across. Though after finding a robot dinosaur he decided to take some time away from the fighting scene and go back to looking for help in finding his friend.

Volunteering to help Charlie's little coalition might have at least given him some sort of trail. Some sort of mysterious facility in Mexico where he might find her or at least information regarding where she may be. He had to go and he wanted to go alone. "I'll radio if something bad comes up. I am sneaking in and seeing what I can find then getting out." Rashid assures Azam over the little earpiece he is wearing right now. It has been almost too quiet and easy to sneak into the building without seeing any guards. Boy does he have a bad feeling about this.

Despite the unease this may be what he has needed. He can't stop now. He is careful as he moves about trying to stick to the shadows and look around. There is probably some sort of data center in here. That is what he needs to find and hopefully he can get what he wants and leave with no one being wise to him being here.

Unfortunately for Rashid, that will not be happening. Penetrating the complex won't be too hard. Somehow, the security isn't all that alert. Almost non-existent, really. So getting through to the data center isn't all that hard. However, what Rashid will find there...

The double doors to the data center are closed, nominally locked, but the electronic lock is showing unlocked--and so when he pushes the doors open, he's greeted with the data center... in its ultimately destroyed state. The walls are coated in a layer of frost; the few desks, pushed towards the walls. The server racks are filled with equipment--clearly no longer in a state of operation. And dead center to it all is Kolin, wearing the outfit that makes her a member of the Illuminati, if one knows the signs.

She has what looks like a shock-cased drive enclosure in one hand, a rugged-looking thing with an integral handle; this she's just slipping into one of the deep pockets of her overcoat. When the doors open, she looks up... and smiles, coolly.

"'Rashid of the Turbulent Wind'," she says, recognizing him immediately, her cool, Russian voice perfectly matching her image and the surroundings.

"I'm afraid you're too late."

"Azam, be prepared. I think someone else was interested in the same thing we were." He murmurs quietly. He finds the way to the data center and pushes open the doors.

His eyes go wide as he sees the damage. So it seems there is a reason this place was quiet and no security was to be found. Someone had the same idea as him and he was beaten to it. "Huh?"

The voice speaks up and Rashid twirls about to see Kolin. Her garb showing her affiliation, but Rashid knows little to nothing about the Illuminati. "I feel that I am at a disadvantage. You know me, but I admit I have no idea who you are." He isn't looking to fight, but he is obviously looking ready to move if Kolin decides to be hostile.

"And if you know my name you perhaps know why I am here. This facility. Who does it belong to and when you got here were there any researchers? I must know!"

"I do indeed know who you are. I would be very surprised indeed, if you knew who I was..." She closes the flap protecting the pocket's opening with a *snap*, and she pats it with one gloved hand as if to assure herself, while Rashid is firing off those rapid-fire questions. She flicks her fingers as he ends the speech, sending a small but unmistakable flicker of ice crystals to dance across the air and dissipate.

"So many questions," she says, coyly, though the little grin that curves her lips in no way reaches her eyes.

"I'm afraid I do know why you're here," she says, "But I am... obligated to answer only this: The data you seek may have been in the servers here. That data... is now mine." Making it obvious, she taps the pocket she just closed.

Correcting herself, as if absently, "Ours. My organization's." Kolin reaches out with her right leg, pushing one of the desks out of the way a little more. There is, of course, the obvious implication--he'll have to take it from her. Or find a way to convince her she should share it...

Rashid is not a fast thinking in some cases. He isn't sure just how much danger he is in right now, but given that Kolin probably took down this whole base on her own trying to pick a fight isn't the best of ideas. "I don't know who your organization is or why you need the information. I just need to know if my friend was here..."

He considers things as he watches Kolin with a bit of a nervous look. Her movements have him on edge and he is poised to leap back if any of that ice is thrown his way. For now he will have to think how what he can do to barter with the woman. Or even if there is a chance for such a thing.

"I would offer money, but I know that isn't something that will work. I not wish to take it from you and if I can make some sort of deal I will. I just need to know the names of the scientists that were here. I need to see if someone I care for was forced to work here." And hopefully wasn't working here when Kolin attacked. Even if that was the case the lack of people he has seen around is at least a minor comfort she might have gotten away during Kolin's attack.

The fate of the researchers is an open question, and Kolin deliberately puts the question aside for now. "You're certainly right that money won't work." She muses for a moment, appraising Rashid. He doesn't look like he's spoiling for a fight; Kolin's sense of danger, of hostility, is well and finely tuned, all the more so since she began working with Urien, whose mercurial moods and penchant for sudden, striking violence is well-known within the Illuminati.

"Rashid of the Turbulent Wind," she says, after a moment, coming to a decision. She pulls out the data drive enclosure, and produces a second one; hooking the two together, she initiates a copy procedure, a light blinking green, slowly at first, then faster as the process nears completion.

"I will not answer your question about the researchers here. But I will give you the information here. In exchange..." She glances at the copying device as the light goes solid, then disconnects it.

"In exchange," she says, as she proffers the copied drive, along with.. a chess pawn. Symbolic.

"You will take this. This will represent a favor that you owe me. One that I will have the pleasure of collecting at a future time." Of course, if he doesn't want the deal, now there's an open copy of the drive...

Not spoiling for a fight for sure. Rashid knows he is improving as a fighter, but he never knows when he might be getting in over his head. And if he can help it he rather not fight a lady unless pushed into it. Instead he stays silent and watches as she starts to make a copy of the data and then makes an offer.

He tilts his head as he looks over the chess piece. A pawn. That is what she sees him as right now more than likely and if he accepts the offer he really would be. At the same time this is the path of least resistance and he can get out of here without a fight. If he decides to take by force there is a chance he gets frozen by the woman and she leaves with both data drives. He takes a deep breath and he reaches a hand out.

"Very well, but...." he lets her place the pieces in his hand before he closes his fingers around the items and goes to pocket them. "I know not your affiliation or motives, but I can accept this exchange." She is too important to risk losing a lead. He just hopes this won't come back and bite him in the ass too much. "I will owe you a favor. I promise." He is a man of his word, but he isn't sure what will be asked of him. For now he will just have to wait and see. He has the data he wanted. Hopefully it was worth the price he just paid

The brush of leather-covered fingertips against Rashid's palm is brief, replaced by the physical weight of the drive enclosure--with the drive, no more than four pounds, at best--and the weight of that pawn piece. A piece that is light, and yet, could potentially weigh even heavier than anything else he picks up that day. Slipping a smartphone out of one of her pockets, she consults the display for just a moment, before slipping it back into place.

"Now then, Mr. Rashid, we should both be on our way. The people taht own this place aren't going to be too much longer in arriving here... and they will do so in overwhelming force, when they do arrive." She pivots and starts walking past him, deliberate and unhurried. At the doorway, she stops, and turns to look at him. She never did give a name; she'll do so now.

"You can call me... Helen." And with that, lest Rashid seek to stop her, she'll walk down the corridor, on her own way out. After all... the people taht did own this place are dangerous individuals. Even being a member of the Illuminati does not protect one from bullets and shockstaves and knives.

Rashid closes his eyes for a moment as he lets out a low sigh. "Thank you." Is all he says in a reply. He probably won't be thanking her later, but for now she has given him a chance to possibly find information on his friend. He will have time for regrets later.

"They are coming? I guess that is no surprise." he murmurs. He lets Kolin pass him and makes not attempt to stop her. Why would he? She gave him what he wanted and it seems like it would be moot to try and attack her now when he has what he wants. He'll just have to figure out how to possibly get out of the favor or hope it isn't anything too dangerous when the time comes.

"Huh? Right....Helen. I will not forget." She probably isn't the type to let him forget either so he finds it best to say little more. She is leaving and he should do the same. "Azam, I am out of here. I think I got what we were looking for." At least he prays that is the case. If anything if the data isn't useful to him perhaps it is something Interpol would be interested in. He swiftly makes his own exit as there is little reason to linger and he rather not be here when the reinforcements arrive. Much like Kolin he will be long gone before that happens.

Log created on 16:10:36 07/08/2018 by Kolin, and last modified on 23:22:33 07/08/2018.