Chance Encounters

July 22, 2015:

X-Factor is hired to track down a girl who looks just like Clarissa. Black Widow observes.

New York

Columbia U

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

Earlier in the day at X-Factor Investigations

A blue man entered with a job for Madrox and X-Factor, it didn't pay much but it involved seeing if his girlfriend was cheating on him. The picture he had shown Madrox of the girl, looked almost identical to Clarissa; except for having arms she also happened to attend Columbia as well….

What the blue man (minus his group) didn't mention, was that his girlfriend was a shapeshifter.

Columbia U, NYC

Natasha normally wouldn't have taken an assignment like this, it was regular to check in on indexed individuals and make sure they were adjusting properly or staying out of trouble; in this case though she had a more personal connection to this particular case file.

She's standing outside of the class Clarissa would have just been attending, looking like any other student, making it look like she's texting on a phone.


Clarissa's just wrapped up her undergrad seminar, a thriling chance to tell intro students that the architecture world is incredibly cutthroat and you should go get a nice job in finance or welding.

The doctoral candidate slides out of the lecture hall, shifting her lips a little as she takes a breath. A pause, and she narrows her eyes, looking right at Natasha. Something seems off about her, but…..


Jamie totally looks like he belongs here yup totally does. See tons of students where trenchcoats all the time. Okay so he actually looks like a flasher, but he's used to the looks that he gets, people aren't used to the PI look anymore. But he was able to do some facial recognization to track down the person. Plus having at least one dupe that is currently attending Columbia for him helps a lot as well.

But the PI managed to get the class schedule for the person he thought he was supposed to find. Of course at seeing her, well something is completely off. The picture she had arms, and here she doesn't. He shrugs and heads over towards the blonde lady that looks like she can explain stuff really well, "Exscuse me, miss?"


Natasha wouldn't look like she had changed a bit to Clarissa, except for the lack of the Black Widow costume; when she notices the girl looking in her direction she smiles a little and keeps texting.

She's watching Jamie out of the corner of her eye, what was X-Factor doing here? She couldn't have had anything to do with that.

Time to see how Clarissa handled herself.


The blonde's hair twitches, swirling as she adjusts, hearing somebody talk to her. The redhead…well, maybe she's leaping at shadows. Clarissa instead focuses on the tall blonde man. "Uh…yes?" she asks, a distinct tone of caution in her voice.


Jamie reaches into his pocket and pulls out the picture, "I'm looking for this lady. And wouldn't couldn't help but notice she looks a lot like you. And well figured I would ask if you know her." Hey it can't be a concidence that she looks almost exactly like this person, right?


Natasha is simply observing for now, filtering out the myriad of background conversations in the area through careful training as she focussed on hearing the words exchanged by the pair.

Depending on how Jamie handled himself, maybe she could make use of X-Factor for some work. It would be interesting to see how he took to being put on a wild goose chase.


Clarissa swallows hard, pulling her head back a bit, furrowing her brow. "Really?" she asks, her voice strained. "A lot like me? Clearly my lost twin, huh?" she's got a bit of venom in her tone now. "Why are you looking for her?


"Sorry I should have introduced myself. Jamie Madrox, I'm a Dick." Okay he freaking loves using that line. "I was hired to find this girl by her father. Considering the resemblence, I had to assume that you two had some connection." He looks at the photo and back at the girl, "I'm guessing by your reaction thats a no though."


"No arguments here," Clarissa says without missing a beat. "My father's a retired pipefitter," she says. "I doubt he's hiring PIs," she says. The armless woman presses her lips together, narrowing her eyes as she shifts her weight. "Did she run away from home or something?"


"They are estranged from what I was lead to believe. They lost touch after the parents got divoriced." Yup totally not saying it's standard cheating girlfriend thing. People just don't open up when it comes down to the cheating GF types. Missing people, they seem to be willing to talk. "But it appears I have to keep looking. Just knew that she looked like you and she goes here."


Clarissa frowns, and her stance seems to loosen. "That's sad," she says. "But I can't really help you," she says, shaking her head. "Believe me, if I knew who she was….well, there'd be a lot of questions, I suppose," she wonders aloud."


Wow, Madrox was really selling this as something else. Even Natasha had to admit she was impressed, maybe there was a Jamie-Dupe out there who also happened to work as a spy because his misleading of Clarissa; even drawing out genuine emotion was impressive.

Slipping the phone in her pocket, she began to make her way through the crowd towards the pair discreetly.


"Well sorry for taking up some of your time." He reaches into the pocket and pulls out a card, "Listen if you happen to see her around or anything, please let me know." If one of his dupes worked as a Spy, Jamie hasn't reabsorbed him yet. But 3 years with the Royal Shakespare company teaches one a lot of damn good acting skills. "My number is on that card. I hardly ever sleep so if you do call, it can be anytime."


Clarissa takes a breath. She bumps her hip slightly and swings her bag, which seems to flip open the flap slightly. "You can drop it in there," she says. "Jamie Maddrox?" she asks, looking at it as he holds it. "Any time?" she asks, locking him in a look. "You should be careful what you wish for."


The guy does as she asks, he doesn't ask how she is going to dial a phone or anything like that though. "Hey I'm just starting out, can use as much business as possible." He smirks, cause hey, this time it's the truth. "And hey if you know anyone that needs my services, feel free to give them my number."


Clarissa's eyes dart up. "Lots of demand around here," she says. "You can solve the mystery of the missing frat beer," she jokes, wryly. "Good luck," Clarissa concludes. "Not like there's tons of blondes here."


At least it had appeared like Natasha was heading towards Madrox and Clarissa. If she meets the other woman's gaze as she turns and heads towards a near-by classroom she winks before ducking in along with a group of students.

Maybe it was all just a co-incidence. She was surely a student here!

Madrox would not long after get a PayPal payment from his client, thanking him for his work and apologizing for wasting his time.


Well now it seems that Jamie is done here. He'll just have to go back and find another case or something, "I already solved the Frat Beer case. They pregamed and didn't realize they drank it all." Well that one was easy. "But hey, cheating girlfriends/boyfriends are a bulk of a PIs business. I don't care if they're cheating college kids." But with that he starts to head out.


Clarissa mmms a little. "I'd believe that," she says. "But really, you want to hit up the undergrads. They're the ones with mommy and daddy's bank accounts," she points out. "We staring doctoral candidates….well, hey, I don't TA just for the fun of it."


No doubt both Clarissa and Madrox would hear from Natasha in the future. The former about how things had been going and seeing if there was anything she needed to continue adjusting, the latter? For some potential work for X-Factor.

For now, the master spy was casually sitting in on a on English Literature with an amused expression on her face.

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