2046-12-09 Gone Fishing

From X-Factor

Gone Fishing
Date Posted 2016/12/10
Location Homo Perfectus Project
Participants Vega
NPCs Taurus
Summary Vega and Taurus check out the Homo Perfectus Project.
Plot Nip-Tuck
Scene GM Scarletwitchy
The reception and waiting area for the Homo Perfectus Project is no different from any other doctor’s waiting room. It’s chic yet simple. A delicate balance of sterility and comfort.

The carpet is a thin silver-gray. The rows of chairs against the wall are blush but uniform. They’re filled with obvious mutants of every variety.

A massive aquarium has been inset in the wall so that if daytime television and gossip rags don’t suit you, daydreaming while staring off at tropical fish is always an alternative.

At the front desk, the same woman from the billboard is there to greet newcomers. Yes, that’s really her. Yes, she had her horns removed. She knows it isn’t for everyone. It was for her, though!

Taurus is nervous. He tries not to show it as he sits down but he can’t help tapping the pen he uses to fill out the initial paperwork for the appointment. Chewing on the end of its cap. It’s been a stressful few days, what with Misty and now Echo. These kids are resilient. Taurus is resilient. Keep moving forward.

Vega is dressed more nicely than she normally is in slacks and a button up blouse under her leather jacket. Her long pink hair sits long and flat down her back as she waits beside him, visibly calmer than the young man she accompanies. She doesn't daydream watching fishes or television, working quietly on her Eye as they wait.

Glancing at Taurus, she offers him a little smile. "It's just a consultation. You don't have to be nervous," she says lowly, so only he can hear her.

“Nah, I just fuckin’ hate waiting,” Taurus clenches his jaw, paying Vega a side-eye of acknowledgement. He bobs his knee up and down, wetting his lips and looking off across the room.

It takes approximately twenty minutes before a friendly, doughy woman in scrubs with cupcakes all over them appears in the doorless hallway to the right. “Taurus?” She calls sweetly, looking all around as if Taurus and Vega are the only two invisible people in the room. “Taurus?”

Taurus gives Vega another look. This one is to admit that he was wrong. That is nervous. He stands.

"It doesn't help that hospital waiting rooms are the worst," Vega agrees, mouth slipping a little lopsided. She nods her head towards the room and its patrons as if that explains /everything/. There are gossip rags and blush coloured chairs. That covers it. Her brows lift as the cupcake clad woman looks around for him, really around, at everyone else.

She presses a hand lightly against his arm, following him as he stands. She can't comfortably reach his shoulder after all.

“Right here.” Taurus is already dreading this. He shares Vega’s sentiment. All of it, right down to the ridiculous woman. He fiddles with his hands, blinking hard at the technopath before braving the hallway.

As the follow the woman down, the corridor they pass through is lined with uninspired landscape prints in expensive frames.

Taurus keeps looking to check if Vega is still there.

Vega nods at the young man as he blinks down at her, waiting for him to lead the way. She falls into a near silent step behind him. Her boots making very little sound on the plush carpet as they walk. Unlike Odyssey and Eurydice, she doesn't disappear when he glances back, simply meets his gaze and keeps moving until they get to where they're headed.

The pair is shown to an office rather than an examination room. A great oaken desk grandiose enough to challenge even Rohan’s accommodations faces two newly reupholstered antique chairs. The entire wall behind it is a bookshelf filled with medical texts. A holoprojector connected to a computer system is set out atop of it, the display of which is live footage of the fish tank in the waiting area.

“You can wait in here,” the attendant says cheerfully, “The doctor will be right in.”

Striding inside, Vega eyes the holoprojector and the fish with mild amusement. "Someone /really/ loves those fish," she opines as she takes a seat in one of the chairs. The room and the medical texts are scanned with interest for anything revealing of character. Her mind sliding outward and seeking technology of interest with a similar, practiced ease. Ever an officer and an engineer.

Just the holo-hookup in here, it seems.

“Hello,” an elegant black woman in a white lab coat and an expensive suit strides into the office like it’s hers. She looks down at the clipboard in front of her, swiping at something on her Eyes, as she closes the distance between them. “My name is Doctor Pett,” Pett offers her hand to both of them in turn. A reptilian tail winds down from beneath her pencil skirt, wrapping casually around one of her legs. “Welcome to Homo Perfectus. I’m here for anything you need. I understand we’re here to discuss some horns.”

Standing and shaking the doctor's hand firmly, but professionally, Vega offers the woman a slight smile. "Nice to meet you, Doctor Pett." The reptilian tail doesn't escape her notice, but it doesn't merit more than a glance. Nodding, she takes a seat and lets Taurus lead the conversation.

Utilizing the holoprojector, Pett takes both Vega and Taurus through a brief tutorial on the subject of the surgeries, the mandated therapist write-off, as well as payment options. They discuss the specifics of his case, particularly the likelihood that his horns are impacted into the framework of his skull. In that event, although disappointing to hear, it would be unethical for her to attempt their removal due to the risks to his safety involved.

To determine this, she is prepared to run a diagnostic.

Taurus agrees and together, the pair of them leave Vega to wait in the room alone.

The fishtank screensaver flicks back on.

The tutorial is watched with interest, Vega's head tipped as if she is mentally taking notes at points. She asks a few questions in regards to specifics, particularly regarding healing time and adverse side effects with similar cases. It's no small thing to do something like this. She flashes Taurus a smile as he goes off for his diagnostic and then sighs, left in the room by herself.

With that damn screensaver. Rolling her eyes, Vega stretches and stands to poke around at the bookshelf with interest while she waits. She's not unaccustomed to medical texts.

Light reflecting off of the water bounces off of the bookshelf, casting little shadows on Vega occasionally as fish pass.

None of the texts are of interest.

Her sigh is a little more audible this time as the books prove to be exceptionally boring. Wandering around to the back of the grandiose desk, Vega pokes around with interest while she waits, skimming her fingertips across its surface. It's a nice desk.

At the desk, Vega perfectly faces the screensaver. A clownfish drifts past, gulping dumbly at her.

A shadow passes over the screen. Too big to fit within the holoprojector’s range or even in the fishtank down the hall, the outline of some deep-sea creature is cast down on the faux-tropical reef. The shape of the kraken’s long squid-like tentacles are there and then, they are not. The fish tank continues on as normal.

The screen gets a hard stare as that shadow drifts over it, a chill prickling up Vega's spine as she stares. Her hands curl white knuckled into the desk. "{The fuck…}" She whispers.

The clownfish returns, flaring out its gills as it wobbles stupidly past on a gentle current.

Conveniently standing at the desk, Vega taps a key on the computer on reflex as if to bring the image up again.

The screen saver switches away to the doctor’s main desktop. The background image is a stock photo of a Hawaiian beach. Among the available icons are the usual suspects.

It does not seem like anyone is coming.

Tapping her tongue against her teeth, Vega eyes the door for a moment before poking around at the computer a bit. Largely, she looks for more of the information on the services they offer out of curiosity. The video went by rather quickly.

As Vega moves the cursor, it turns into a little orange fish whenever it hovers over a clickable icon. And when it hovers over a specific gap in the icons, where only the sandy Hawaiian beach is visible.

That's… weird. Vega frowns at the screen as the fish swims along over a black space where there is nothing immediately evident. Glancing at the door with an ear to anyone coming, she taps it to open up… whatever is there.

A darknet window opens. A simple black square with lines of unformatted, neon text.


Not /code/.

.../code words/.

An active, ongoing chat.

Voices begin to filter in as Taurus and the doctor make their way back down the hall. (done)

It's simple habit. Vega's eye immediately flicks on to record the code as it scrolls by, documenting the ongoing chat. She lifts her head as she hears the others make their way down the hall. Fingers flying, she looks for any connection info or otherwise for the discussion, reading through it quickly.

At least what she can. As the voices get louder, she puts the screen to sleep and hops over the desk - with a helpful air-glide- and retakes her seat.

Purposefully buried beyond the reach of a cursory search, the connection information is difficult to establish. Likewise, although the conversation taking place is not overly complex, it isn’t immediately apparent what the subject is. Phrases like ‘Harvest’ and ‘Food & Water’ are reused, but other terminology is not often repeated. Color key-words are also used, in this case to represent what could possibly be numerical values.

When Taurus and Dr. Pett return, all seems well.

“Ready?” He asks, an information packet under one arm. He seems much more at ease and after they’ve left, he tells Vega that he’s decided not to go through with it.

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