Interrogation of Armin Keller

May 16, 2016:

Partisan brings Jean to interrogate Mr. Keller. (Emits by Partisan)

Unknown

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions: Scott Summers

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

There were close to sixty five mutants dead, and another seven regular folks. They'd hit just short of eight safe-houses, strike teams rolled up dressed as local SWAT teams. At a few places, evidence of their leader had been plainly present. Armin Keller, was a rare kind of man. His handiwork was easy enough to spot really, he made little effort to hide who he was or what he had done. A card table, a pair of folding chairs, garden clippers and buckets full of severed fingers, teeth and well no need to go into detail. Most of the victims had been tortured by a rare kind of evil, in full view of their peers, friends and loved ones. Some had been gutted, mutilated alive for the sake of theater. The Partisan herself had said it plain as day. "A terminal interrogation is theatre punctuated with an execution."
Armin Keller's file was more than enough reading material to spend days on much less the short six hour transit to, whatever you called this place. A prison maybe, anyway thats beside the point. His father had been an SS officer, his mother was impregnated as part of a eugenics program in wartime Germany. Orphaned from an early age, he entered a Communist "Educational home for boys" at four years old. When they caught him killing house pets at age fourteen, they'd put him in a junior soldier's program. He'd gone straight to the Stasi from there, became "Hauptman Armin Keller,Felix Dzerzhinsky Guards Regiment Kommando 4." A hunter of spies and terrorists, a soldier and a tactician. A trained, cold blooded counter revolutionary.
The faded CIA files suggest he was a psychopath, and theorize he was a serial killer given direction by the state. Cold, remorseless and potentially a genius. He'd fell in love with a KGB agent, the two fled to Colombia following the collapse of the soviet union. There Armin had met the Partisan, hunted Pablo Escobar together. There are gaps here of course. It references a CIA capture and interrogation of Armin and his wife, that his wife had died during the interrogation. He'd been placed in a blacksite and then, nothing. How did he get out, how did he find the men he turned into his strike force, how did he get in contact with the purifiers, where did the money come from? He hadn't told Part much of anything, and so it's time to try a different plan of attack.
This prison is, well somewhere up north probably. A quiet farmhouse surrounded by woods, and staffed by a trio of older men with Kalashnikovs and South American Accents. Part's Kaibilies of course. Quietly the Partisan pauses to shed her jacket, and so begins the slow removal of numerous weapons and doodads with no name. "Jean, make sure your pockets are empty. No keys, no coins, no eyeglasses, no phones, no wallets, no nothing. No real names, yadda yadda. Don't hand him anything, don't tell him anything about yourself beyond the most general. Do not approach his cell, do not accept anything from him. Treat him like a cobra alright, this is one of the most dangerous men on the planet. You feel me?"


When you get the call from Partisan, you really don't ignore the Bad Wolf. But it's been too long since she's even spoken to the woman, one she considers her long lost sister from another mother that was possibly born one hundred decades from when she first graced the earth with the cry of a babe fresh from the womb. She didn't tell everyone that she was leaving, she made herself become an after thought if anyone saw her rush out of the Manse proper and onto Scott's bike which, the keys were left in so it was like it was meant for her.

She was taken, blindfolded, the travel long enough for her to catch a nap, long enough for her to have a snack and eat, though she couldn't see. It was about trust. She could search out the minds of those she rode with to actually gleam her location but she really didn't bother at all. Trust. It goes both ways. She'd be mum from here on out.

But once inside the building, Jean reaches into her pocket to retrieve the keys, settling them down upon the table as light as she could. Money, her wallet, pieces of receipt paper, all was placed down with a shaky hand as she draws in a breath to straighten out her shoulders and slump them with an exhale. Trying her best to relax.

"Yes. I understand." Her words were clipped, short. Trying her best to mask her nervousness. "Tell me what to ask him. Or what to do. Something." She was trying to shake it out by the way her hands flailed. But she was ready.


"I need to know how the fuck he got out. He's convinced the real Partisan is dead and I'm some sort of random wanna be, so he isn't interested in talking to me. He respects intelligence though, just get him talking and keep him going. He's one of the best interrogators alive, but he's probably never done this with somone who can figure out whats going on between his ears. He's from my world, not yours right? He knows our game, not yours. Feel free to just be curious though, alright?"Part offers what she hopes is a reassuring smile and a wink.
Down the stairs, well theres a jail cell bolted to the floor in the middle of the basement. Theres a small card table with a few folding chairs, and well a guard leaned up against a far wall. Another big Latino guy with an improbable amount of ink, and a shotgun. That'd be the jail guard then, another of Partisan's Kaibiles.
In the cell, seated on the floor with his back resting against a simple cot? Well he looks about sixty, fit for his age but beyond that? He looks like every other guy that age ever, utterly forgettable in every visual respect. A pair of glasses perched on his brow, and a book in his hands. He glances up casually, before slowly easing a bookmark into that tome and closing it. "I see you've brought another guest, is she the Partisan too?"His voice is delicately tinged with German, and delivered in a notably casual pacing. It's the sort've voice you'd expect from a shrink, or maybe a Librarian.
"Hello, Herr Keller."Part pauses, pulling out one of the chairs at that card table for Jean. "My friend here might make for a better conversationalist, we'll call her…Daisy?"Part pauses to peer after Jean, and well with that she begins her retreat from the room. The Guard of course, well he ain't going nowhere.


Jean cringes, she had forgotten that Parti had colorful language. Even though it was a shock the first time around she'd ease up on it later. But still, the roughness is what she appreciated about the woman, and it was welcomed the few times after. "Alright. I'll try my best." She was already formatting in her mind, her general demeanor. Taking in the words that she's garnered from Partisan and drawing out a personality that is unlike Jean and possibly fits.

But once she sees the man?

Her brows furrow briefly and her lips form a thin line, whatever Jean had planned to do, it was tossed by the wayside in that very moment. His accent was noted, the way he carries himself, far from a killer of any sort and one that possibly hung with Partisan in his earlier years.

"Daisy is fine." Jean comments, a light smile appearing upon her face as she slowly steps forward, gripping the back of the chair to settle in with one leg crossed over the other. Thankfully, she was wearing boots, boots with no laces and only a zipper to make sure she's snug.

"Ich glaube, dass wir dieses Gespräch auf Deutsch fortgesetzt werden sol." Jean murmurs, a little smile upon her lips as her fingers fold together. "Though I will admit my German is a little bit rusty, I trust you to lead?" (Technically, from here on out, we're speaking German!)


Armin rises with a grumble, before offering a soft smile. Hands casually crossing behind his back as he gives Jean a bit of a study, at her introduction into German he offers a broader smile yet and a small golf clap. In German his accent is, well impossible to place but his pronunciation is crisp. Educated you might say. "You're German is very good Miss, I am of course happy to oblige in turn. Your pronunciation is quite good, your teacher was from Stuttgart if I was to guess?"
Already asking questions instead of inviting queries, gently trying to guide the interrogation from the first words spoken. "I take by your lack of vulgarities you are not another one of the Partisan's children? I must confess my condolences all the same for her passing, these gentlemen and the young lady do not seem to believe me. She was a rare Woman, regular people do not inspire this sort of admiration and devotion well after their death."a pause, and another little smile. "Oh goodness listen to me getting off on a tangent, whatever can I help you with my dear?"He seems warm and downright gentle, but emotionally? There's really nothing at all going on here, he's as cold and calculating as it gets already. "I'm afraid I must warn you, I do not know quite as much as they seem to believe I do."


Her head bows just a little, a soft smile caressing her gentle features, fingers drawn up to push a bit of hair away from her face to tuck into her messy bun. "Thank you. And I suppose he was. I've only studied German in middle school for the entire three years before taking up another area of study." Even though that information was a total lie, it was something. It showed that she wasn't afraid to answer a question, no matter how small it could have been.

"But no. I'm not one of her children, and it seems like you were very fond of the woman. I've only heard stories from her friends and her extraordinary feats." She nods her head faintly. "Well, it seems that the woman and her friends had brought me here under the guise that you would easily relay information -to- me. Information that apparently you do not know. I suppose if you're willing, we could start from the beginning." She leans forward, hands placed upon the desk now as she gets comfortable. "How did you escape."


"Well she was also a prolific murderer, a cocaine addict and something of a rebel without a cause. She founded the Kaibiles you know, Guatemalan special forces the CIA tasked with ethnic cleansing primarily."Armin glances up towards the staircase, and then to the guard behind him. "These men are Kaibiles of course, war criminals. You should be careful, this false Partisan has some sort of hold over these men. It wouldn't surprise me if she meant to kill you after you satisfied her purpose for you."It sounds almost, well tender really but again. Inside he's as cold as it gets.
"As for my escape, well it was no master feat really. I had some friends still in circulation after Germany reunified, once word got out that the CIA had betrayed me? They came running, you make friends in the STASI. Especially with Germany hunting us down one by one, we had ample motivation to keep one another alive."Armin is, well shockingly good at this game. Outwardly he isn't just convincing, he -sells- that little story. Problem is, thats all it is. A story. "As for names and so fourth, well I can't really betray my benefactors. The only reason the young lady upstairs has not executed me, is because of what she thinks I know."


"She also has the foulest mouth this side of America." Jean cracks a little laugh, leaning back within her chair as she turns just a little to the side, her foot bouncing, a sign of comfort in the conversation that she's currently holding with a sadistic man. But even as he speaks, her eyes search, and soon her mind begins to spread, soft and gentle her approach, searching the mind of the man as she carries on the conversation as she would.

"I have certain parameters in effect that'll guarantee my safe passage once we are finished here, no matter what result I give to them. I am not worried of my own safety." She admits. Confidence, it leaked from her bones. But she was picking, picking through the story that he makes up within his brain, picking to see if the names of the benefactors come to light, just by mentioning it.

"You know, as an after thought, it seems that you are accused of being a prolific murderer as well. If I had pictures, I would show to you the way the victims that were found were torture and put to the rack under someone who seemingly carries your signature." The smile fades, these were people. Mutants and humans alike. Made no difference to her.

"But, give me something to tell this woman. What is it do you think she wants to hear?" Her mental magic presses further, but not too much, attempting to make him pliable, and ready to speak. "Perhaps I could convince her to let you live for a time."


"Of course I am a murderer, I am not a kind man. I have done things that polite language cannot convey, and I would do them all again. "Armin blinks cooly, lifting a hand to adjust his glasses. "I murdered children alongside the Partisan, set mothers and fathers on fire. I make no apologies for the things I have done, because there was always a purpose. See if your dog attacks someone, and they die as a result are you not guilty of their death? The American government is a dog, like all others. Whom do you think gave the orders, who paid me for my services? You are as guilty of my crimes as I am."There's some twisted Logic there, but Armin's not lying. Even as vague faces roll through memory, and a name. Edward, Edward Fisher.
"Do you truly believe the American government so impotent, so helpless that it is powerless to stop the Purifiers? Where do you believe their money comes from, why isn't the FBI off the leash hunting these men down? Why do you think they are called anything but what they are, state sponsored domestic terrorists?"Truth or belief, well he believes he's telling the truth and who knows maybe he is? "Your tax dollars funded my work, both in Columbia and more recently. Do not think yourself innocent, we are all guilty."


"I've never implied that you were." Jean comments, non-defensively of course. She knew what she was walking into, if Partisan's name was tacked to it, it wasn't going to be pleasant. "It's the price of war." Jean admits, her head bobbing slightly. She was truly shaken by his words, or so it seems, how her hand lifts again, this time trembling to press lightly against her forehead to swipe away the hair there, how she inhales and seemingly grows rigid at that moment. The fear of it all, the very fear she forces to the front to carry within. She puts on a show right back.

"I've never thought that they were so innocent and inept. I know that somewhere, deep down? Someone on high is pulling the strings. CIA has cases dating back fifty years of their plans to start domestic terrorism to get our Presidents to strike war on Cuba. No. They are not helpless. This is war."

Her finger lightly presses upon the table, still prying, still scanning, feeding into the bullshit with her own beliefs. "God saves and man kills. Yes?" Jean murmurs quietly, placing her hand flat upon the table. "What does she want to hear. What are you afraid of. Just what would make you completely happy at this moment in time, Sir Armin Keller."


"To have my wife back, or to at least know where she is buried."Comes the retort, and outwardly he seems as casual as when this began. Inwardly, well the bottom just drops out. That mental discipline crumbles, and what lies behind is not pleasant. Partisan is wild animal fury, but this is totally different. It's not evil, this is so far beyond such simple concepts. It's black rot, the sort've vile caustic shit no sane mind could ever hope to conjure. "She wants me to have some nugget, some mind blowing revelation I don't have. Something that'll make up for the fact that I am responsible for the death of the Real partisan and her Husband, but thats a fairy tale. It was unpleasant, and foolish but I took the only route open to me. As a result they are dead, and there is nothing I can say to make that OK. The same man murdered my wife, and threw her body in a shallow grave somewhere. I believed him, he manipulated me and as a result three people are dead."
Armin pauses a moment longer than is strictly necessary to catch his breath, though he masks it with the delicate adjustment of his glasses. "This is not what I would call a war however, that false Partisan certainly sees it that way though. Everyone believes the current situation is abnormal, but that's incorrect. At no point in recent history has humanity enjoyed a single day where someone wasn't being ethnically cleansed, or in some false war. Everyone wants to frame this entire arrangement as humans against Mutants, but that's rather simple. This is about what it's always been about, power."
"In the Revolutionary war it was rich land owners against the King, they subverted the common man to fight on their account. Civil war, it was industrialists against agriculturalists. Protecting money and power, same as the world wars. Same as the American Civil rights movement, those in power repressing a minority in order to divert attention away from themselves and towards a marginalized third party. This is about the fact that without Mutants to play the part of a repressed minority, people would turn their attention to those in power. Corrupt, manipulative American Kings. The men who own the media, also own the companies who make the guns for police. They make the cars, and run the ads to purchase them. They lie, cheat and steal. They destroy the masses of the body politic, they enslave the proletariat. People have names for these people, Illuminati is one. Hydra wants to be them, but well they can't. I am a symptom, not a cause of this strife. Now ask yourself who is the evil party here."Armin takes a quarter step closer, leaning forward to make eye contact.
"I acted out of revenge. The Partisan now, she's a CIA backed attack dog. She went into M-town and gave those men arms, she incited this. She is the one who created the Purifiers as we know them, she's responsible for this. She's only helping them so they can survive long enough to serve their purpose, before they find another target. Muslims, drug users, another super power perhaps? Democracies do not work without fear to distract the ignorant masses, they'll kill me sure enough and then what? Who gets to be the Next Armin Keller, the next Partisan? I did my bit for revenge, she's doing this to protect the men in power. The original Partisan is dead, her devotion to the proletariat died with her. Now take a moment dear, and ask yourself exactly who it is you're helping here. Am I really the bad guy, or just a cog in a machine?"He believes bits of that, some of it is lies. Then again that's the most effective lie isn't it, but it's hard to tease out what he does believe and what exactly is a fabrication.

"They took everything from me. They killed the Partisan when they couldn't control her. How much longer until they take from you my dear, how much longer until they can't control you?"This then, is Armin in his element really. Counter-interrogation as an art form right here.


Ouch.

She's found the striking point. The one that sends him crumbling so that she could look deep within. She's seen horrors of men and monsters, he was no different, but perhaps the way he reverts so quickly back to his 'norm' is what chills her quite to the bone. She won't be sleeping for days after this, that was for certain. "Her wanting for you to have some mind-blowing nugget is not what she wants to hear. Try again." She remained calm, even though her voice pronounced the shakiness, even though her cheeks flushed with the embarrassment at having being put into a room with a dangerous man who could possibly snap her neck within seconds of her reacting.

But even though his ranting and raving, she remained calm. Inwardly. Sifting through the images, digging deep and pulling back. Hearing the echoes of the hollow that the man breeds within. But she went deeper. Deep to the point that the blush slowly drains from her face, her eyes snap upright as he makes eye contact. But perhaps like her, he could see that there is nothing.. nothing at all there.

"No one." She admits. Untruthfully of course. But who had a better poker face than Jean Grey? Especially if she could manipulate the thoughts and whims of those she's come into contact with. "My stance in this very operation you're involved in is the utmost neutrality that money could by. So much so that I believe that neither you, nor the faux Partisan are truly the pinnacles of good or bad. So much that I do believe that we're all just cogs. Down to me, to you. The goons that the faux Partisan hired to protect us. Her. The American government, et. al."

"I could go on, Mr. Keller." She murmurs then, leaning back within her chair at a full press, swallowing hard, her throat feeling as if it were dry, put underneath the pressure of it all. "You go back to Partisan's death." Her fingers lift, slowly snapping.. a slow cadence. Not hypnotizing, but meant to piss him off.

"I ask you a question. Mr. Keller. You give me mention of control and Partisan's death. I ask what would make you happy."

Her fingers slowly.. slowly snap.

"Partisan's murder." She snaps slowly again, then stops. "Tell me. Mr. Keller. Before the unfortunate death of your wife and Partisan and her family. Were you involved in sexual relations with the Partisan?"

*Snap…snap…snap..*


The Question, doesn't seem to cut him really. The Snapping though, well he's already a little amped up. That finely crafted veneer is faltering at it's very foundations, and then comes that lancing question. Armin's eye ticks in an otherwise well suppressed wince. "No. I am held captive in the basement prisoner of the faux Partisan, that's why she is foremost in my thoughts."A beat, and he's starting to calm back down once more. Maybe if he was younger, or hadn't been quite so isolated or who knows but right now? He's cracking. "I don't have what she wants."And there it is again, a name. He's thinking about it, so as to remind himself -not- to say it.
George Fisher, Station Chief George Fisher. Vague impressions of disgust, anger, regret and faint memories of bad ties. Colorful Piano ties, and fishing lure ties and mismatching dress shirts. There's a memory there, just beneath the surface of those somewhat calm waters. His guard has not fallen apart completely, but related memories are starting to rise.


Jean, or Daisy lets out a little sigh. The snapping stopping, the sound alone doing it's job at triggering something. Even the mention of him and Partisan possibly had done it, but it was her turn to slowly stand. "Let the idea of this Partisan go." She mutters, hands drawn behind her back, shoulders slumped near submissive but still weary, tired. "She's just a figment now. An idea. Nothing that this current faux Partisan stands for. This Partisan is angry.." Jean feeds on it, from what she feels and could process. "A bad tie that needs unwound.." Regret. Shoulders rolling.

"But alas, I am neutral. Only here to root out what is black, and what is white." Fingers slowly tap against the table, a concerto of fingers delegating a Nocturne. Piano tiles..

"Does this faux Partisan have what -you- want."


It's a dark room, smells like stale cigarettes. There's a man with a mickey mouse tie standing beside him in the shadow, peering towards a section of two way glass. "Well as far as I'm concerned, Mr.Keller you held up your end of the deal, I'll have the paperwork cleared by the end of the week for you and your wife."There's a familiar warm presence behind and to his right, clutching his hand but out of sight.

The other side of that two way mirror, well it's rough. Theres a woman handcuffed to a heavy metal table, beat to hell. A man seated opposite doesn't look much better, it's hard to even tell what he looks like. "Who else, tell me who else or we stop the game right here."A pair of reasonably dressed men stand off to one side. Approaching slowly in time as one presses a revolver to the beaten man's head. "Tell me now, who else knows. Who else is a Partisan, I need names or I'm going to kill this man."

"Don't worry Ed, don't worry I promise this is all just some mistake."The woman shifts uncomfortably in her chair, head swimming. "Guys just call my case officer, I'm squared away. Ed's a Civilian, this is between us just take a minute and call my case officer. Just, everyone chill out."

-Click- goes the hammer on that revolver, and time stops. "Ed don't be afraid they're just bluffing, you're a civilian and I'm an employee. Look, Ed look at me. Look at me Ed! These men, they aren't worth being Afraid of. Just Look at me, everything is going to be-"BANG. There's suddenly blood everywhere, the two agents share confused looks with each other.

The Man with the bad tie just stands motionless, jaw slack. Armin slowly becomes aware of just how hard that woman is squeezing his hand behind him, and for just a moment things stand still.

Armin narrows his gaze quietly for a moment, lost in thought as it were. "She has nothing for me, Now I'm just waiting on time. My friend will come aga, Friends will come again."A beat, as he half turns away. "Men like these, aren't worth being afraid of. Now if it's all the same, I'm done talking thank you."

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