Reichenbach: Suicide

September 18, 2014>: Waller has a preliminary hearing with The Council. An impossible proposition is discussed.

The White Room

Four walls. That's it. :)



  • The Shadow Council
  • The Man

Mood Music:

The room never changes. Sure, it's been remodeled a couple of time, security measures are always being upgraded, new tech installed, but it hasn't changed since she took over. Not really. And it's a waste of space and time, always has been. A large circular room, concrete walls, floor, ceiling, at least, that's what it's always sounded like. The faint echo of her steps when she walks in, the way sounds seem to resonate in here for a little to long without being muffled or absorbed by anything soft like carpet or furniture. There is of course the single light overhead that shines down on her and only her, blinding her to the rest of the room, keeping her well lit and surrounded by the unknown.

If it all wasn't such an obvious attempt to make her uncomfortable it would actually be cliched. The Shadow Council has always been big on trying to make her feel smaller then them, it's why she stands while they sit, it's why they're just dark shadows cast on the walls 20 feet tall and she has to crane her neck to look up at them, it's why this room even exists at all. To prove they lord over Amanda Waller. It's always been a bit sad before, how hard they try to compensate. This time it's different.

"No explanations then?" asks the voice that's been so clearly 'masked' that it sounds robotic and distorted, the shadow farthest to her left, "No lies about how they were a threat to the nation's interests?" the snear is clear in the tone even if she has no 'face' to see it on. That one is new to the Council. They like to pretend they never change, that it's always the same bosses in charge, but she can tell, voice masking or not. Inflections, word choices, cadence of speech, idioms used. He's new and he's trying to flex to show how scary he is. Youngish then. Hasn't been in the game long. Great. They let a rookie on the Council.

How could something so simple and not as powerful as one might think be so hot?

Standing underneath that single light-post was stifling. It made her feel like her suit was too tight, the pencil skirt she wore too tight behind the knees, thankfully that heat didn't reach to the shoes that she bought cheap offline for Payless. For moments like these, when you're standing in the middle of a darkened room, no chair to rest upon, no cigarette to distract her thoughts, no tumbler full of scotch with two ice rocks to chill the heatwave coming from above. Nothing.

But she held her pose. The same one she would always use when getting yelled at by the commanding officer, but legs weren't shoulder width apart, arms were behind her back and chin held high. Shoulders back, Amanda. So the sweat could roll off. Clench your teeth so you don't find the need to swear. But don't back down.

So many rules of engagement to follow, yet so little time, they demanded the answer, and explanation of why she did what she did. She could easily lie and make up some reason as to why she did what she did, she could rant about the aesthetics of a big ass T on the middle of an island, or how they were a bunch of…

"No. No explanation." There was nary a hint of ire or single telling emotion in her voice; it was smooth as silk. "No explanations. No lies. I did what I did because it was in the best interests of Stormwatch." She actually addressed the Younger of the council, and did not lose her cool.

You're getting better, Waller. Kudos.

The voice in the middle has been with the Council the longest, nearly as long as she's been Weatherman, and now it sighs, "This is to much Amanda." it says with the sort of resignation one might expect. "Your years of service, the things we have asked you to do-" there's a scoffing noise from the far left and the tone in the room changes suddenly as the middle shadow stiffens as if struck. Slowly he's head turns, stares. Silence. Perhaps the feed has been cut, perhaps there's a conversation she's not privy too, but whatever it is, Lefty seems to shrink a little bit before the man in the middle speaks again as if nothing had happened at all, "they have been hard choices. Your victories for our country far outweigh your losses, but we are a clandestine agency and you…" the shadow's head shakes, "We do not operate in the light, your actions have threatened us all and the works we do here. A hearing is being called, to judge your worthiness to continue in your current position. Some other names have been tendered as potential replacements for you, names with impressive resumes. Perhaps it is time for a change." the shadow looms larger, reminding her that despite the fact that it may be her only ally on the Council, it's not pleased with her in the least, "Perhaps you have forgotten your purpose here. You need to be … reeducated." a shadowy hand waves, "The hearing will be held at the end of the week and you will be informed of your fate then. Until then, I suggest you clean up this cluster fuck you hurled yourself face first into."

And like always, without waiting for a rebuttal or a word from her, the disciplinary hearing is done. A check of her watch informs her it's been 2 hours of questioning, 2 hours of grilling, of a hot light and unknown faces spouting at her… The lights come on as they always do, not to illuminate the whole room, but rather just the path way back towards the exit. One week. Jesus.

Amanda clearly understood. She was no fool that what she did was wrong and well, she had to admit. She was only human, that being said she was allowed to make a few of them along the way.

"While I agree we do not operate in the light, there is -no- threat that we can't handle. You hired me for this." She wouldn't dare say the Shadowy Figures name. Did she even know that silhouette?

But shoulders back, Amanda. Let the threat of finding someone new roll down and hit the floor, out of sight. That chin of hers lifted higher, eyes narrowed upon the figure that seemingly cowered through silent talks. That was the problem with these sort of businesses, equality was never given or promised, someone always had someone to answer to. In a world like this, you cannot be your own boss. No one, is ever their own boss.

With the decision made, Amanda tightens her lips, teeth clenched behind thickness that threatens to spill insult and vitriol alike. But no matter. She turns towards her six; hands clenched behind her back to contain the tiniest bit of anger that she held for that moment. A slow stroll towards the exit was always best. Best to contemplate, decide, and to cool.

The lights overhead, the ones that light the path back to the door flicker once but don't go out, it wouldn't be that odd, everything after all has power fluctuations, like the lights in a house when the AC kicks on… Everything except Stormwatch HQ with it's own dedicated Arc reactor system Stark doesn't know they buried down here.

"Oh puppet my puppet won't you dance a dance for me,"

Sings a voice from the darkness. It's deep… like /deep/ deep, and in the concrete room it echoes and reverberates off the walls. For what it's worth, the singing voice is /exceptional/, a basso baritone to make critics weep and bring even strong women to their knees. It's not supernatural, it's not magical or telepathic or any of the things she's been trained to sense. It's just /beautiful/.

"Dance a dance of slavery.
Puppet puppet mine,
won't you dance til end of time?
Oh puppet puppet strings so taut,
bounce and hop to my every thought.
Puppet my puppet do you hate or love your master fair?
Oh puppet do not answer…"

the last words are spoken and not sung, and somehow because of this they come out hard as a hammer blow,

"..because I do not care."

From the darkness (now she can hear the physical footsteps of someone slowly walking around her in the dark beyond her field of vision, "What do you think of my little song Ms. Waller? I wrote it for you. I feel it could use a few more verses though, right now it's hardly more then a folk diddy, but I think with some fine tuning and a happy ending it could become a real hit. Something… blusey maybe. That sort of indie blues sound is starting to come back, think it could be a hit?" the voice is amused.

The flicker of lights cause her to stop, her gaze lifting up with the note to call someone to have the surges checked out. "It could have been a breach.." She mutters to herself.

Though before she even picks heel from ground, the song begins to start. There was nothing mesmerizing about it really; nothing that drew her attention, that had magic laced within, it was simply beautiful. Something that would catch the eye and ear of someone with a pen and paper to ink a deal, the song.. would be something that Amanda herself would turn off.

She turns slightly, eye over shoulder at the sound of the footstep, her brow lowering and raising yet again once the song itself stopped.

"I should be offended." She states plainly, turning fully to place her back at the door, her hands pressing at the small of her back just to make sure that she at least had -one- weapon on her person.

A stupid balisong.

"It all depends on your targeted audience, however. Though lately, with too may liberals afoot you probably won't get -too- far."

Wait, why was she answering truthfully? "Who are you and what do you want."

The chuckle is a thing between a growl and cultured amusement, "Liberals, conservatives, in the end it hardly matters which side of the aisle you decide to place your trust in. They'll all betray you." the footsteps continue their circle, but just as they're about to step into the light of the pathway, the lights, just those in the section the man is walking, go out, and then come back on again once he's walked through them. She doesn't so much as get a good look at his outline. "I like a woman that is direct, shows confidence and character, rare qualities in the female population. Simply put, I am the one who can help you keep your job, or more simply put, I'm the one that can cut your puppeteers strings, and what I want is something … well, we'll get to that. First let's discuss your current predicament shall we?"

Her eyes were on the move, just to catch one glimpse of the man who spoke to her.

"Any sane person would know that. No one can be trusted, not even your self."

She still doesn't move from her spot, gaze falling back towards the door to make sure the shifty spectre hadn't moved it on her whilst she wasn't looking, then directing back towards those footsteps and the location of the voice. "There is nothing to discuss about my current predicament. I'm sure you already know where I stand and where 'they' stand. You -have- to have been here the entire time, haven't you?" She was deducing this fact. How else did he get in?

"You know what they know. Am I right?" She was about to turn towards the door to make her exit, but something told her not to. "And I will not explain myself to someone who doesn't have the balls to show his face nor tell me his name."
The amusement remains, her insults clearly having no effect on her, "They are cretins, flailing in the dark with but a single candle's light to guide them and, wouldn't you know it, when a spot of wax appears on their hand their first reaction is to toss it away." there's a tsk'ing sound that echos in the room. "There you go, being direct again. However, you'll have to do better then undergraduate reverse-psychology ploys if you wish to sneak a peek at my genitals or their size. I believe it's customary to buy dinner for me first. Perhaps a film?" There's a moment of silence, "Perhaps not."

The walk continues in an lazy unworried sort of beat to the conversation, "Back to the matter at hand, what evidence do I have that you wouldn't explain yourself to me? You don't explain yourself to the people who's names and faces you /do/ know, but these plebs fire up a little shadow and a little light and a touch of theater and suddenly you're a school girl in the principal's office. I thought it would make you more comfortable explaining yourself if you did it to someone who's face and name you did not know. Seems to be the only sort of person you /do/ explain yourself to."

There was a hint of a smile that doesn't reach her eyes, just there for a second, then gone the next. If she did not take this 'visit' as business, she possibly would have given a full one; teeth and all.

With that said, she turns now, heels clicking against the floor to cross the final way towards the door, hand reaching out for the handle to grip and tense.

"Alright. I'll play your game." She finally says, dropping hand away from the handle to turn and lean against the door, one foot kicked back to lay upon the door which brings a strain against the other by way of skirt. "I'll play."

"But know this. Nothing surprises me. Not anymore. Nothing makes me uncomfortable. I have seen it all and possibly done it all. To assume that seeing no face makes it easier to tell and retell a story again and again…" A hand is raised, mainly to stop herself from going on a tangent. "But I digress."

"My intention was clear. To approach the one that walks around men, to speak to him of the recent appearances of those most foul and force his hand into fixing his shit." Oops. Swear word! So unprofessional. "I will admit to this, and this only. I approached the wrong person for the job. Anyone who surrounds themselves with children playing dress up deserves a dose of propofol and done away with. My -only- oversight as leader of Stormwatch and my last."

The Man tsks softly, "Not your only oversight, but you are still young and impatient, in time you will see you have made others, though minor." there's a sort of smile in the resonant voice as if the man were having a grand ol' time. The pacing has stopped and now he stands just outside of the light, and yet inside of it enough for her to make out a few details. He's huge, for starters, at least six and a half feet taller, taller likely, and his suit is hand crafted, not machine made, tailored to fit him. It's a little old fashioned, but because it's old, more as if the man found a fashion he liked and wasn't willing to bow to the whims of the rest of the world's taste in favor of his own. The suit is worn casually, displaying wealth with the sort of common disregard that only the stupidly wealthy can manage, the shoes are the same, and what jewelry he wears comes down to a simple gold ring, devoid of identifying mark other then a tastefully sized ruby. His hands are spectacularly large, the fingers blunted and heavy, the knuckles knotted slightly, not with the pain of arthritis, but more like a boxer's hands, the sort of hands shaped by a lifetime of personal violence. His face however is entirely cast in shadow, from the shoulders up he appears as a man of shadow.

"That said, I could not care less about your previous failure," he pauses there long enough for Waller to know he's intentionally leaving the 's' off, allowing her to claim only the one, "only about your continued position here at Stormwatch. You see, I rather like you as the Weatherman, you suit my purposes with aplomb and you can be reasoned with. So the question is, do you think you're willing to make a deal?" said the spider to the fly.

"Mmm." Is the only indication that she gave that she acknowledged his comment. Young. She felt ages old through rough times and five second decisions that were made in heartbeats that often times come back to bite her in the ass, bites everyone in the ass in such a position as this. Stormwatch was made to crumble, all government agencies were. It was a matter of how and when and who would come out on top. She knew this; she was no fool.

Though his visage came into view, the hand that rested upon her back slackened a little. She sized him up, each gaze taking in inch by pound as indicated through the thinning of her lips into a straight line. If it came down to a fight, she would possibly be on the loosing end. But she has an edge. A very dangerous one.

"I suit your purposes." She states plainly. There was no question behind the mark or indication that she would need an answer at this moment. But should she need it? She'll take it.

"Remind me to question you on this later."

A beat.

"I'm always willing to make a deal. This is the business for it, am I correct?" Sign your soul on the dotted line, Waller. For the greater good.

The Man's smile can't be seen, but his approval can be /felt/ in the air. It's then that the difference is made crystal clear, the man doesn't strike her as wealthy, and she would know, she's been around some of the richest men on the planet. And it's not that he's poor, clearly, it's just that money isn't what he feels like. He feels like Power, capital 'P'. He's the sort of man that can lead men, tear apart nations, walk elbow deep in blood on a battlefield and then stand before a conquered hoard and earn their loyalty. The 'It' factor people talk about, this man seems to exude like it was a cologne he could manufacture at will. "Excellent." comes the voice from the shadows. "You will steal something for me, something I do not think anyone else could steal. You give me this thing, free and clear, and in exchange I will give you the leverage you require to stay in your position for…" he hand waffles, "four or so more years. At least until the end of the current administration and a couple of years into the next. Once that transaction is complete, you and I are back upon the relationship we shared before, which is to say unwitting compliance in one another's goals." a small shrug, "The deal is simple enough, if you are willing to make it."

The shift in the air causes another step to be taken back. Power. She knew that feeling, she's pressed it upon others whenever she's requested presence. She calls; they come. She seeks, she finds. It is the way of the world, getting what she wanted.

She listens to the demands like an apt pupil, her brows lowering, features curling into a frown that draws harsh lines upon her features. Jaw set, a step taken forward towards the large man but not enough to remove the shadow from his visage. She rather liked it this way.

"The relationship we've shared before? When I don't know your name." Peculiar. "But no matter. Tell me what it is I am to steal and I'll get it for you. A few more years as head of Stormwatch couldn't hurt either one of us, nor this country." Hands drop to her sides now, shoulders becoming lax. "I'll make my decision based on that. Never go into an agreement blind."

The chuckle is deep and reverberates in the confined space, "Oh no." he says simply, "Because if you know what it is I wish to have taken and you refuse the job, then you know to much. You are to valuable a piece on the board for me to simple discard over so small a matter. You will accept the continuation of your position blindly, and responsibility of getting me what I want that goes along with it, or by this time next week you will be relegated to a minor over seas post, I hear the Belgrade CIA Station in Serbia is about to lose it's chief to retirement. Maybe you'll get lucky, Belgrade is beautiful no time of year ever." The voice continues to sound amused by all of this, "Did you know? Bendix is pushing, hard, for your possition. He's got the votes… currently. I don't suppose you think he's forgotten that little tiff you two got into do you? He's always struck me as a… forgiving sort of man." Henry Bendix is many thing, forgiving wouldn't show up on the list anywhere. Vindictive asshole on the other hand…

There she was, that smile that was all too dazzling, flashed for but a breath of a moment and gone the next. She left the building.

"Smart." She states plainly. "You must not know me at all. If you had, you would know that I already plan on taking what you're asking for." For herself? Quite possibly, she does have a few tricks up her sleeve, depending on if she wants what he desires. But this was all for keeping her position for another few years, a guaranteed and uncontested spot.

Her hand raises in the interim, seeking to cut off his words, threats and promises of anothers intention. "I don't care." She doesn't. "So making threats or snide remarks will not work for me. Tell me the details."
The large mitt extends outwards toward her, the hand open in invitation. A handshake to seal a deal? Well that's a touch old fashioned. He says nothing.

There appears to be no hesitation in her actions. Even though she remains where she is for a time, staring at the hand, her mind went elsewhere.. lost in thought.

She could probably give the larger man a tug into the light to see his face, but no. Trust had to be earned, something that was both ways in this situation. So she takes a step forward, crossing the clearing that divided the two and brought them together, her hand reaching up to lightly rest into the palm of his hand, fingers curling in an all too tight militant grip and firmly shook to seal the deal.

The hand doesn't give beneath her grip, and when his fingers wrap around her hand, it's clear his grip engulfs her hand including a portion of her wrist. The grip is strong, firm, but also gentle as if it's owner were intentionally holding back for fear of doing her real harm. "Excellent." his tone is smug, triumphant, pleased with her. A lesser person would have felt a small thrill run up their spine at the knowledge of having pleased him. The It factor is real. "You are going to need a team to complete this job, and even then it is most likely a suicide mission. Do not use your regular squad of misfits, they're not nearly skilled enough for this and even if they were they can be traced back to you. Put together a new team, assemble them, and steal me something shiney." he pauses and his voice grows deadly serious, the grip on her hand tightening ever so slightly, "You are going to steal me a Lazarus Pit from Ra's al Ghul. Not a sample. A pit."

Amanda couldn't help herself. The mention of suicide mission nearly draws out a brief chuckle .. no. It did. There was that chuckle that started from the depths and rose up to be presented to the air. She wasn't mocking him, it was just that damn funny. Suicide missions? They were her bread and butter.

That little laughter continues until he mentions, Lazarus Pit. It stops abruptly, her brows dropping again as mouth held agape. "Say what now?"

An entire pit?

"You want me, to steal a pit. A lazarus pit. From Ra's al Ghul." Her hand tugs upon his a bit, grip tightening in return, even though she may not be evenly matched, there was agreement there. Amanda did have that secret side, the one that enjoyed the thrill, even if she was not apart of it. And it was something that she'd never admit to.


The fingers slowly unfurl from around her hand, releasing her from the grip but the feel of the preasure there remains phantom like, "Oh I'm in no hurry, I rarely ever am. But you on the other hand, well…" another small shrug, "You get your leverage when I get my pit, I would assume that this means you have until the day you lose your job and everything then becomes moot. Of course, now that you know the details, if the deal becomes moot before completion then you're not the asset I thought you were and removing you from the board of play-well. The loss of a Knight is greater then the loss of a pawn. Don't become a pawn Amanda, you wouldn't like it much."

People often use threats in her business, people with big demands who think they're scary but who ultimately are just people voted into and out of offices of high standing, mostly overweight white guys with family connections or money who wish to dabble in world ruling. This guy is none of those things and his threats don't ring as hollow.

"Oh I've got time. Even when it seems that I don't. I do." Waller was confident in that. Her hand drops loosely to her side, shifting a bit behind the thigh so that fingers could rub together, to push away that phantom grip that still lingers, but it doesn't work.

But the man before her could already see the gears within her brain turning. She already knew the top two people who could possibly pull this off on their own. Which means, she was going to have to reach deep into her personal pockets and make the other an offer they can't refuse. Money is loyalty, and for the other? Entertainment may be everything.

Her opposing hand reaches up to stroke a bit at her chin, ignoring the threat for now. It was something to leave sleep over, which was left in the mental bank for her to drink herself silly over later. The team was partially assembled..

"I assume you know where I lay my head. Give me a month. By then I'll have the team assembled and ready to go. And I know you'll be watching. Find me before we depart, as I'm sure you'll have other requests in mind." Such is the way with making deals that one can't refuse, there always, almost always, something else tacked on to it.

The Man chuckles softly, "Oh no Amanda, not this time. Don't get me wrong I'm more then capable of breaking a deal, of lying to you should it suit me, but in this matter it does not. You will likely never see me again, at least if you are lucky. There are no additional items to add to the list, no extra shopping I will be asking you to do. Doing so now would damage our future working relationship and it's to valuable to throw away. Once you have what I have asked for," a business card literally tumbles out of the darkness above their heads, fluttering down in front of Waller, "call this number. It will work exactly one time and one time only, call it, leave no message, say nothing, just wait for it to ring and hang it up. After that my people will be in touch with you concerning the exchange." he begins to back away from her into the darkness of the room, "I hope this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship Amanda, I think we could do great things together…"

There was a little feeling of kinship when he spoke those words. She was the same way, but.. perhaps to the people she's lied to, she was much more prettier in that regard. She does understand though, there were no further words for her to spare in that instance, and she was ready to leave as she wanted to before.

The card that fluttered down was plucked from the air with a quick snatch of fingers from the resting position at her side, flipped over and looked at; tucked away within the top that she wore as she turns upon her heels. "Indeed."

Those were the last words she spoke, heels clicking, echoing off the walls of the great white room of which she departs.

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