Turning the Tables
Roleplaying Log: Turning the Tables
IC Details

Phil brings back a proposal from his meeting with Peggy, turning Eddie into a triple Agent.

Other Characters Referenced: Seneschal, Rami
IC Date: February 01, 2019
IC Location: New York Public Library
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 02 Feb 2019 03:21
Rating & Warnings: G
Scene Soundtrack: [* ]
NPC & GM Credits:
Associated Plots

* * *

It's damn hard to know how long it really takes for Phil to get back. It at least takes an overnight. Maybe sometime into the morning. Midmorning. Afternoon. Food, carefully wrapped to Eddie's specifications, does arrive. But that's the only real marker of time.

Still, true to his word, Phil Coulson returns. And he's really back in the power suit now, sharp-cut G-man all the way.

He motions for her to come with him. Positions himself so he blocks the camera. And taps one finger to his lips exactly once to indicate she should be silent as she does.

* * *

How did Eddie pass the time? Well she finally ate the packaged food that was brought the second time, and with the promise of the loo, she had no problem drinking the water that was left her, especially with the benefit of her stainless steel straw that was brought in with her new meal.

There was a nap in there, too, if only to keep fresh minded. They say only the guilty sleep in custody. For Eddie, it was the rest of the relieved. At some point she put her head down on her folded arms and zonked for a good long while.

Then she made origami out of the wilted lettuce of the untouched sandwich from before.

When Phil finally returns and bids her silently follow, Eddie's eyebrow quirks in a sharp black blade of question, but she stands from the table and does as he asks.

* * *

He takes her right out of the Triskelion. He weaves them in and out of the busy New York City streets until they're ascending the steps of the library. Down and through the shelves to a randomly selected study room. He takes a moment to scan her with his wrist gadget, making sure nobody bugged her or tossed a tracker onto her while she was in custody. Finding none, he nods once.

"I'm going to give you an opportunity," he says, without much preamble, "to make this right."

He stands across from her at that study table, arms folded as he watches her.

* * *

It was a cold walk, but Eddie never once spoke up against it. She merely crossed her arms over her chest and kept her face bowed against the wind until they are in the warm study room of the library. Her cheeks are ruddy and her nose is threatening to run from the winter chill, but she still has the cold front named Coulson to face.

When he doesn't mince words, she comes up to the table between them, leaning forward to prop herself on the gloved tips of her fingers. "Tell me."

* * *

He nods once and says, "I have gone to great lengths to make it appear your 'Jib-Jab' story checked out. So if you say no, you're free to go. Just know you won't do any kind of clandestine work ever again. I'll burn you with friends, enemies, and everyone else I can think of. You'll live out your life free, but you'll want to do it somewhere real remote. I've taken the Raft off the table, but that doesn't mean you get off Scott free."

He spreads his hands. "Say yes, get me what I need, and it's a true second chance. With me. With SHIELD. Because Benjamin Palmer is key. And you have a direct line to him. You've succeeded in the last mission he set and as of right now you've even managed to cover your tracks. You can lead us to him."

* * *

It might not be Scot free, but he's offering her the chance to take the money and run. Get her cure and disappear. For all intents and purposes, she could live out her life the way she had planned when she took this job in the first place.

And yet.

"I want to fix this." Eddie says with conviction steeling her voice, a decision she came to while waiting the course of hours she spent in the interrogation room. "I think part of me wanted to get caught in the first place. I didn't have the heart to follow through when I realized I broke the one cardinal rule: I allowed it to get personal. I care about you, Phil. About Rami. I can't mend the bridges I've decimated, but if I can do this for you, I will. But after this is over, I want what you promised. Either a pod or you leave me free to return to my doctor." She uses her palms to push up the sleeves of her shirt, and what were just the occasional scar from when she was with SHIELD originally has turned into line after line of her moniker. "I won't live like this anymore. I can't."

She exhales, "So yes."

* * *

"Eddie, you get me Ben Palmer," Coulson says, in that quiet way he has when he's at his most deadly, "and you can do whatever you want. I'd urge you to make sure your doctor checks out, but your personal medical decisions are your own. Hell, if the money suddenly disappears because you get him? SHIELD insurance will pay for it and I'll cover whatever it doesn't cover myself."

His eyes soften with some compassion, and he adds, "I don't want you to live your entire life in misery. I really don't. I'd have SHIELD all over this right now if it wouldn't tip Palmer off. He's got such a foothold in that building right now that the slightest misstep could tank us all."

* * *

Eddie's eyes demur away from Phil's face when he says he'll cover the cost of the procedure, suddenly finding the worn table in the library study room terribly fascinating. She has to swallow past the emotional lump in her throat before she speaks again. "Right now, he thinks I'm exploiting our relationship. He wants to divide SHIELD on the registration issue so that it implodes and he spoke of a power shift. He also promised me immunity, so he's not just working on his lonesome for his own goal. I get the impression he not only has people working for him, he's also working for or with someone. He used the royal 'us' and 'we'."

Her gaze finally lifts again, "I can get you Palmer. But there are other hornets in that nest."

* * *

"I know. One of them is so highly placed in SHIELD he outranks me. Take whatever care you were going to take and multiply it by a factor of ten."

He holds on to the back of the plastic library chair, his fingers tap-tap-tapping on the back of it. "I thought about trying to have you root out more than him," he admits. "But the truth is he's very careful and he's very smart. I don't think he's going to show enough of his cards in front of you to give you much more than he already has. I think we're going to have to get him and see what he'll give up under interrogation."

Who wants to bet it won't be the nice, friendly, conventional you-have-civil-rights interrogation Eddie got?

* * *

Eddie's head tilts slightly the he mentions the higher ranking SHIELD agent, "You could always get me in their office without my gloves and I can see what I can find, but the risk is I go in too deep, and I'll need to be yanked out." And she doesn't mean physically, but mentally.

"Palmer's going to want another meeting soon. He doesn't give me my directives over the phone besides us deciding when and where to meet. I also have some items in a safety deposit box, shit I kept on him just in case it went South. Problem is, I don't have the key. So I'm going to need the freedom to go get it. It's probably better if I keep up regular appearances anyways."

* * *

"Once we leave this library I'm going to keep treating you like a regular agent and give you exactly as much freedom as you had before," Coulson says. "Which means I cannot send you off to do things in people's offices. As far as SHIELD's concerned?"

He gives a quick, weary, Cheshire Cat's smile.

"They're going to hear about how I dragged you in here to yell at you for pulling that ridiculous stunt and wasting SHIELD resources verifying your story. A stern-talking to I decided nobody else needed to be privvy to, because I have a soft spot for you. After that? I'm going to trust you to get it done. But don't wait too long. We still don't know what the hell he jumped into our servers, but I don't imagine it's a data mining program meant to find out what all of us want for Christmas so he can surprise us."

* * *

Eddie finally leans back from the table, holding her hands up in capitulation. "I'll never do it again. Consider me properly chastised for using company computers for personal amusement, no matter how good you look in cartoon green pants." She attempts a smile but it fails miserably, settling around her lips awkwardly before it falls away. "I'll give it a few days for things to settle, then make contact again. As soon as I have a meet time again, I'll let you know as soon as possible so you can assemble the back-up team to take him down."

* * *

Coulson nods once. Then he walks past her, claps her gently on the shoulder, and walks on. It seems she really is free to go, because he doesn't order her to come with her or much of anything else, really. He pauses at the door, like he might have something more to say. But in the end he just lets whatever it is lie, and slips back out into the stacks. A man with a purpose, who has much work to do yet.

But then.

Eddie does, too.

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