Iceworm

September 06, 2014:

Kitty Pryde's efforts have finally revealed the location of the rebel's secret base… er, Hydra's secret base.

Triskelion

Fortress, Armory, Prison, Office. The Triskelion is many things but above all, it is SHIELD.

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

Melinda May doesn't change expression at all. She just looks at Kitty, then nods once. "Ms. Pryde." And then her attention returns to Darcy. "Have you completed the visitor sign-in yet?" Or would Kitty feel less freaked out if they went to sit outside?

*

Kitty looks between Darcy and May, sensing the sudden shift in demeanor. The grin fades into a more serious expression as she notices that May isn't greeting her with the same enthusiasm. She must not know May very well - if at all. Though tempering her own enthusiasm and nervousness at finding herself in the midst of a world renowned spy organization, she shakes her head. "No, not yet. I just ran into…" she pauses, realizing that she didn't catch Darcy's name. She glances at her name badge and then back up to Darcy. "Sorry, Ms. Lewis. She was helping me figure out how to come find you. So, I just sign in and they'll let me through?" She doesn't seem to mind that.

*

"No, ma'am, I was just about to," Darcy replies to May before looking at Kitty and smiling ever so faintly. Must be ''normal'', currently on clock. "This way, if you would please, Ms. Pryde," Darcy says then, motioning toward the check in desk.

*

Jericho doesn't like coming to the Tri, but he needs to run a couple things by May and May is at the tri. It's… a thing. Sadly. Sometimes a phone call or an e-mail won't do. The doors open to admit the hacker in his usual garb, jeans and a long sleeve tee. He gives the guards at the entry something of a look before sighting May and… Lewis and Kitty Pryde apparently. Interesting. In any case that's where he's headed.

*

Melinda May nods again, and waits for Kitty to follow Darcy. But that long-honed sixth sense, aka, those tiny hairs on the back of her neck tell her there's a disturbance in the force. She turns to look, then nods as she sees Trent approaching. K'Nert had better steer clear of this place. She's not fond of the tiny demon, but there are sorts here that would take altogether too much enjoyment from dissecting the critter to see how it ticks.

*

Kitty is quick to follow Darcy toward the check in desk. "Of course." Following protocol and Darcy's directions, she takes a glance over her shoulder at where May remains standing and catching a brief glimpse of Jericho by the doorway. Interesting, her own thoughts echo his. "I guess I should have realized spies aren't big on the smiling and joking," she says softly to Darcy with a smile before giving her full name to the person behind the desk.

*

"Hell no. You'd think having a sense of humor was fucking criminal," Darcy whispers at Kitty, breaking that character of serious SHIELD agent for a moment before she straightens up and looks at May with a 'I'm-not-doing-anything' nod.

*

Jericho walks up with a nod to Darcy and another one to Kitty, though he seems sort of curious as to why she's here.
"May." He says with a nod. "Is this a bad time?" Darcy and Kitty could after all mean trouble. Kitty's a hacker and Darcy's… er, Darcy. Jericho doesn't have any idea about Darcy's private proclivities but… Yeah.

*

"No," May says to Trent. Kitty just arrived so hasn't had time to start causing problems, and very likely Darcy is doing lobby duty because she's already been in trouble. All told, May has it easy at the moment. Once Kitty and Jericho are both signed in, she turns to lead them to the conference room closest to the lobby. And yes, Darcy, you are welcome to tag along.

*

Darcy? In trouble?! Of course she's on lobby duty because she got in trouble! I mean, when Fred from accounting starts whining about his stapler and refuses to even consider the brand NEW stapler Darcy so lovely brought for him from her tiny supply closet sixteen floors away, expect things to get a touch heated. With may leading the way, Darcy brings up the kaboose, and follows the train to Conference Ville.

*

There's a relieved grin that Kitty shoots Darcy, but then she's involved with checking things in and getting her temporary clearance. Proudly attaching the sticker to her chest, she heads back to follow May - and now Jericho? - to a conference room where they can talk in relative peace.

*

Jericho is moving carefully, as if wounded on one side. If Kitty notes the absence of one K'nert, Jericho certainly notes Lockheed's rather conspicuous absence. "No pets police in the Tri? Pity. You'd think the agents would adore a chance to pal around with a dragon. It'd be just like dealing with May's boss." But cuddlier, he doesn't add. Ah well. The conference room draws an eyebrow. "I didn't know we were having a meeting? Find something, Kitty?"

*

Melinda May closes the door after everyone's inside, and immediately steps right into Jericho's personal space. "What is it this time? Contusion? Laceration?" Yes, his attempt to conceal an injury around May is worse than a waste of time.

*

Once in the conference room, Kitty grins. "I figured he may not be welcome in a high security spy headquarters. This place seemed like it was a no fly zone sort of area." Plus, she didn't want to risk the possibility of anyone deciding Lockheed was something worth studying. And by studying she means dissecting. Her eye drifts to Jericho's carefully held side, but May is already asking the questions in the no nonsense and hard to deny manner. She will just give him a concerned look and attempt to stay out of the way. That's the helpful thing to do, right? "Logan and I had a meeting with Agent May. I may have found something, but I'm not quite sure."

*

Darcy moves to the conference table and takes the pen from her clipboard and resets things to a blank sheet of paper. She has a feeling she'll be expected to take notes. She's just settling everything when May gets into Jer's personal space, and the recruit looks up and blinks her green eyes. But she plays the good Agent Recruit and goes quient to take notes.

*

"Someone took a run at me today." The hacker says quietly. "I had to bolt through a portal into Limbo. They got a good shot in though. Winged me with a sniper rifle at a thousand yards." He shakes his head. "It was inevitable, I suppose. They'd been a bit too quiet lately. This one was better than most though. Herded me with Snipers into a CQB ambush. Would have gone badly if not for K'nert and the portal."

Jericho glances over to Kitty with a thoughtful look. "So what's up here?"

*

Melinda May gestures to a chair, not giving him the choice of refusing to sit. "Let me see. Kitty, what did you find?" Basically her way of dealing with both things simultaneously even though it reveals a possible foible (that the young woman seems to have somehow sidestepped May's usual habit of addressing everyone by their last names), and maybe making Kitty feel enough at ease to share her information.

*

"Someone?" Kitty studies Jericho, a worried expression on her face. "You don't sound all that surprised at people attempting to kill you by sniper." Perhaps she should expect that from the people Logan associates with - but it's still something that shocks her. "Can I…" she takes a step forward but doesn't try to crowd them. "Can I help somehow?"

While she stays close by just in case May allows the help - because it's clear that Jericho has little say in the matter - she answers the question asked by both of them. "So, I was running that program I was talking about earlier on the OTP, hoping they slipped up somehow and repeated even a little of the code they used to encrypt that last piece of data. It took forever, but it finally came up with something. I'm not quite sure if it makes sense, but when you put it all together, I think it does? Anyway, the reason why that last bit of information was so small was because it only contained a bunch of numbers and letters: 77100N6180W. I think it's longitude and latitude. Some place in Greenland. Though, of course, it could just be a bunch of gibberish that my cracking program spit out and I'm grasping at straws."

*

Jericho takes the ordered seat and leans back at the news, thinking. "Sounds like latitude and longitude alright. That's a bit east of Thule, on the Ice Cap. There's nothing there." He purses his lips, thinking.

"I'm not surprised someone tried to kill me." Murmurs, answering Kitty's question kind of on autopilot while he works through something. There's something about those coordinates he's missing. It's nagging at him.

"I'm okay, Kitty, unless you've got a first aid kit or something here." Gauze and disinfectant is about the best he can do right now. "May, can you pull up satellite imagery for that location on the monitor here?"

*

Melinda May looks up at Kitty sharply, then at Trent. "Coordinates for sure." She moves to stand again, stepping around to the interface controls in the room and activating them then handing the 'remote' to Trent. "Satellite access is ready." She then moves to a small supply cabinet set into the wall adjacent to the door and pulls out a first aid kit. Kitty's welcome to help with this part if she wants. May is … not a medic.

*

Kitty is not a medic either, so the two of them will just have to sort of fumble through getting Jericho bandaged up. She'll help where she can. She shifts her gaze from Jericho's wound to the interface, torn between being helpful and seeing whatever it is that the hacker may have found out.

*

Jericho brings up the picture and winces a little at the bandaging. It's… well, better than not being bandaged. There's nothing on the screen but ice. "Hrm. Yeah that's about what I thought… I wonder…" A tap of a button and he gets a thermal wash over the screen. A section of the ice shows up warmer than the rest.

"No that doesn't make sense. There's no way they could have gotten excavation equipment on that scale without someone noticing. Which means…"

He winces again as the bandaging continues… then his eyes widen. "No… couldn't be… Iceworm?"

*

Melinda May looks up. "Iceworm? If that's a Dune reference…" She looks up at the satellite image, then with a frown moves to start putting the first aid kit away again. "I'm liking this less and less."

*

"Iceworm?" Kitty raises an eyebrow curiously at the sudden realization that Jericho has. It's not a word that brings a wealth of knowledge to her. However, she can gather from the context something, at least. If they didn't excavate it themselves, then that means: "You're saying there was already something there?"

*

"Yeah. In 1960 the US Government initiated a secret test program to research the viability of placing medium range ballistic missiles under the Greenland ice cap. The program was called Project Iceworm. They got pretty far in it actually, with a mobile nuclear reactor powering the base and several miles of tunnels dug under the ice, even including missile launch facilities. Problems with the ice flowing and deforming the tunnels forced the Army to abandon the base six years later with no one the wiser. But it's still there, or well, probably is. The ice doesn't flow that fast after all. It's perfect for Hydra's needs. Remote, secret and cold enough to keep the virus production chilled without sophisticated refrigeration." Jericho shakes his head. "And it's huge. That cell, it's not going to be easy to crack."

*

"Underground. Under a glacier." Wow does May look displeased with that news. "I'm going to need to take this up with Fury. I suspect we'll need more manpower than the Bus can carry." Well, the Bus can carry a LOT of people if she's doing that instead of carrying cargo. She looks at Kitty. "Was there anything else you figured out?" It's unsaid but implied: if not, time to leave.

*

One thing that Kitty is good at is getting to things that other people can't. However, one look at May's face and she gives a nervous smile. Perhaps now is not quite the time to mention her ability. She files away Jericho's information for later and then shakes her head at May's question. "N-no. That seemed about it. Logan may have had something else, but I'm sure he'll just drop in and let you know himself if it's really important. I'll be in touch. Or something. If I find out anything more." With a step backward, she shoots Darcy taking notes a smile, which carries to Jericho and then to May, who also gets a nod. Seeing that the hacker is bandaged and she survived her first foray into SHIELD territory, she'll call this visit a win. Or not exactly a loss.

*

Jericho looks over to May with a sigh. "I'm going to contact my friends in X-Men Red. If we don't coordinate this they're gonna show up on their own and we'll end up stepping on each other just like we did in Gaza. Only this time it'll get someone killed or worse." He sits up a little testing the bandage. Still hurts like hell but it's better than nothing.

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