MIA: Shield Edition
Roleplaying Log: MIA: Shield Edition
Participants
IC Details
Synopsis:

Dani seeks out Agent Ulysses for help in finding the missing telepaths.

Other Characters Referenced: Emma Frost
IC Date: June 03, 2019
IC Location:
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 04 Jun 2019 12:59
Rating & Warnings:
NPC & GM Credits:
Associated Plots

There are times throughout a person's life that they might feel as if they're in the crosshairs of someone.

That sense of being watched. Of being hunted and stalked.

Perhaps Ulysses might get that sense as he goes about his day.

And he's right to feel that way! Another Agent of SHIELD, Danielle Moonstar, is the one doing all of that hunting and stalking. Sure, she could have reached out via inter-office instant messenger, but for whatever personal reason of her own, she doesn't. So, instead, the Cheyenne woman discreetly asks around for one Agent Arngrim.

Once she gets a bead on just where he is, that's where the black-haired woman goes. She's dressed in the typical 'uniform' of an Agent of SHIELD; black slacks, boots, white blouse and black blazer.

———

It's things like this that certainly don't help ease the paranoia that's become something of a permanent layer in Ulysses' life. It's bad enough that there's potentially a spy in their midst. It's worse when your superior has you doing things that probably would be frowned upon if not land you in jail forever or something if you get caught.

If nothing else, being kept busy around the office helps in turn to keep one's mind from indulging to the overactive imagination. The computer systems are something he consistantly checks, because when Director Fury tells you he doesn't want any repeats from what happened with the Trike, then you do your best to make sure everything's ship-shape. But even great minds and busy fingers need coffee. It's highly necessary for productivity. Also, so far as he's concerned, it counts as much needed exercise when you feel like you spend most of the day at a desk.

Coming back from refilling his coffee cup shouldn't make him feel nearly so tense, however. He'd thought he'd heard his name murmured, more glances cast his way than usual. Imagination, it's probably his imagination. He tugs at the yellow and black striped tie around his collar to loosen it as he winds his way back towards the station he'd been working at, sipping at his black coffee.

———

Paranoia. It's never a fun feeling to experience. Especially in a work place such as SHIELD HQ.

It's also never fun either when it seems like that paranoia is warranted.

As Ulysses circles back around to his station to find someone waiting there for him. The woman has her back turned to the man as he approaches, but when he draws close enough Danielle Moonstar pivots slightly upon heel to look over her shoulder at him.

Automatically she gives the coffee-sipping man the once over. Her expression is something severe, or perhaps closed-off is the better word, and it stays that way up until Moonstar realizes that he is the man she's looking for. Only then does the expression on Moonstar's features soften slightly, "Agent Arngrim?" Dani begins, her voice purposely low, "I'm Agent Moonstar. Do you have a few minutes we could possibly chat?"

———

Ulysses stops perhaps just a little more than several steps away from her when he sees that his space is already occupied. His coffee cup hovers paused in the middle of another sip, brows lifting as pale blue eyes peer past the black frames of his glass.

He's not so sure he likes the scrutiny he finds himself under, finding it a little unnerving. His thoughts run something like this: Did we hire fashion police? Crap, did I iron my suit today? At least I remembered to tuck my shirt in- noooo I missed the dog hair on the sleeve..!

By the time his brain kicks into gear that he should probably say something, the woman's beat him to the punch. A few things click into place now that the tension seems to be broken with her words. Moonstar, he's heard the name around. Ulysses starts to nod.

"Yeah, that's me. Um. Sure? I guess?" He glances around briefly before tilting his head at her, curious, but curiosity is better than paranoia, which to be fair, hasn't retreated far. "What can I do for you?"

———

The Agents of SHIELD surely need the fashion police with how much black they all wear.

Really, there's nothing wrong with a little bit of color. There really isn't. Especially in warm or cool tones as appropriate for people.

Still, that is neither here nor there, not with Danielle Moonstar. Sadly, she is a very serious agents. Very serious. That seriousness can still be seen upon the woman's features, especially with that last question of his. What can he do for her. That causes her gaze to flick around the room and while she isn't one to admit out-loud her own depth of paranoia here in the office, it's obviously there. Her head tilts towards an unoccupied meeting room not far from the two, "Let's chat in there."

And with that said, Moonstar steps over to the small meeting room and steps inside. Once Ulysses is inside Moonstar quietly closes the door and only after that door is shut, does she finally speak on why she was looking for him. "We seem to have a mutual friend in common and he's asked both of us to look into some missing person cases of the mutant kind. Specifically telepathic mutants."

———

Ulysses is totally serious. And he sneaks a little color into the otherwise expected dresscode of a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent. Just ignore the little embroidered badger at the end of his yellow-striped tie.

With a nod he follows Moonstar's lead, relaxing into something more of his usual levels of paranoia as he sips at his coffee. He watches her shut the door, feeling that nervousness crawling back up his spine, but he waits to see what she says as he nurses his coffee.

That she jumps right into things is something Ulysses much appreciates, if for the fact that it dispels excess tension that likes to build up for every second things are further drawn out. "We do?" Wait, wrong thing to focus on, and Moonstar can almost visibly see him switching mental tracks. "Missing…mutants? Oh. …wait, so there's more than one?" By the furrowing his brow he's already figured this could be a very bad thing. Well, it was already a bad thing with one person of such abilities going missing, but more? Most definitely bad.

"So someone knows what they were looking for," he says after another swallow of coffee, for what it helps of his suddenly dry throat. "How many have gone missing?"

———

Straight-forward. A straight-shooter. Not one to beat around the bush. That is definitely Danielle Moonstar.

Most of the time it does her well and then other times it sometimes doesn't

Thankfully, today, it seems to be in her favor, and as Ulysses switches mental gears, the Cheyenne woman waits patiently. To give him time, she quietly busies herself by taking a seat in one of those looks-comfortable-but-really-isn't office chairs that circle the small wooden table.

His question about whether there's more than one prompts a surprised look from Dani, but then she realizes that yes, that would be new information for him. "Yes." She answers and as she speaks she pulls her phone out from the pocket of her blazer. With a tap to the screen the woman activates a small note file upon it, "There are now two college aged kids missing from Queens, with both having some sort of telepathic powers. Neither of the families have received any sort of ransom requests for the missing kids." Moonstar's expression now turns toward the grim, "So, like you said, whoever is doing this definitely knows what they're looking for."

And while Moonstar has much more to say she falls silent for a few seconds as she considers how to word her next statement. "There's a third person as well." The Cheyenne woman states, her words slow at first, "A rather high profile individual. I would prefer to keep their name out of anything official, but I've a feeling we're going to need to use our caliber programs and equipment to find them. Our mutual friend said you were also helping her with the students, and I'm hoping you can do the same for me and for us to potentially find a pattern in this mess. As long as you're good with keeping it all off the books?" And here, Moonstar pauses, as she waits for Uly's answer to that question of hers.

———

Sinking into another chair, Ulysses sets his coffee mug down in front of him as he tries to find as comfortable a position as one can ever hope for in these chairs. He gives up after realizing all he's doing is just making annoying squeaking sounds, flashing an apologetic if not embarrassed look in Moonstar's direction.

"Two kids?" He frowns, tapping a finger against his chin. "Wait, wait, wait. This is that missing student that popped up in the news earlier last month?" He vaguely remembered reading about it and thinking it an eerie coincidence. Maybe he should have taken his own advice about what he'd said about coincidences, but it didn't really change much. The news is troubling, all the same. Meeting Moonstar's gaze, he nods. Someone is out looking for telepaths, and being sneaky about it. All signs point to Not Good.

Ulysses perks at the mention of a third, and he lifts his head from where he'd been resting his chin in hand, an eyebrow arching. No names, not yet. He's still frowning, but he nods. And since Moonstar's not using names even for a certain P.I., far be it for him to do so either.

"I did have a possible angle to check out, but I haven't given it a shot yet. But I've…been handling our mutual friend's case apart from SHIELD business. Sooo, it wouldn't be a stretch keeping it off the records," he says as he awkwardly shifts in his seat, tracing the handle of his coffee mug as he glances down at the table. He's about as good with poker faces as Sloane, but he figures he's said enough without admitting that he's totally done a lot of things off the books, so this? No big deal.

———

The poor kid's - no matter that they're the same age! - obvious uncomfortableness prompts a flash of a smile from Dani.

Something that's part amusement and another part sympathy. They've all been in situations that have caused them to feel awkward to say the least, but it doesn't stop Dani from feeling the urge to get poor Uly a fidget-spinner to help him.

Still, it doesn't take long for her mien to turn more businesslike as Ulysses speaks. "Yes, that's one of them." She says when he mentions the missing student from earlier last month, "And now there's two."

The mention of a possible angle brings a head-tilt from Dani, "What kind of angle?" She asks, curiousness in her voice now, "I'm pretty certain it's going to be the unconventional that gets us the break in these cases."

And while he confirms that he's good to go to keep everything off the official books, Dani still waits to say who her high profile client is. Instead she waits to see what angle Ulysses has on possibly finding the missing college students.

———

"I'm not sure how much you were told about the case I was helping our um, mutual friend work on. I was given access to her laptop to see if I could find anything." Ulysses watches Moonstar to see if any familiarity surfaces as he goes on. "I found out that there was a virus on there that she'd picked up, probably- and I guess I can say this with more confidence considering that we have a common vein of interest with these disappearances now, when she was searching for things concerning her abilities."

He scoops up his coffee again, deciding to sip a little more before it gets lukewarm. "The virus is a keylogger- so it records certain data from whatever goes through that keyboard, transmits it. Since I didn't have it connected to the internet it didn't have any chance to transmit anything new, but I did some searching with what I pulled from the code and it seems that it's pinging data off to Europe somewhere. Eastern Europe. Couldn't narrow it down from there." The agent holds up a finger.

"But… I was thinking…I'll make a copy of her laptop data, plug in some extra code to track where the data from the keylogger goes and hopefully get something before someone gets suspicious about signals being picked up from a target they've already scooped up. If that makes sense."

———

"I probably don't know everything about the cases." Moonstar admits, but when Ulysses mentions a virus and then a key logger program, Dani nods in understanding.

She at least knows the highlights of the cases it seems.

When he breaks down his idea that causes Moonstar's expression to turn thoughtful. "I like it." She says, her gaze unfocused for a moment longer as she thinks through everything. "I like it a lot. I think we should run with it." She states, her eyes re-focusing upon Uly, "Eastern Europe is a pretty big place to search around in. If this can help you figure out or obtain any further information that could narrow it down and make it less haystack and more needle, it'd be worth it."

Idly Moonstar drums her fingers against the tabletop, "Do you know where the students picked up the virus? What if we purposely infected a new 'target computer' and see if we could lure the would-be kidnappers into taking one of us? Then we could find out just where and what's going on."

She looks back to Ulysses again, to see what he thinks of the idea she just threw out there, since there's quite a bit of inherent danger involved with it.

———

Frowning at his suddenly empty coffee cup, Ulysses however is still listening, nodding as Moonstar agrees with the idea. "My thoughts exactly. I'm working out a few kinks in some codework that will leave us some breadcrumbs to follow."

To the question asked, he shakes his head. "I only had the one laptop to work with, and I couldn't find its origin point. But…" With Moonstar's proposal he blinks, brows lifting as he looks at her again. Now why didn't he think of that? …probably because of the potential danger, which it seems he's quickly realizing the risks of pulling something like that off. On the other hand, it was a pretty good idea.

"That could work," he says, his tone both excited in that breakthrough sort of way, but also somehow blended with the anxiety of 'this is a terrible idea.' "Okay, yeah. So…we make up a profile, we work out the interests these kidnappers are looking into, poke around like a newbie and pretend to be looking for help- just like role playing!"

———

"When do you think you'll be able to deploy the breadcrumb code?" Because yes, that's now how Danielle Moonstar will think of Uly's potential spy-code going forward. "The sooner the better. Clearly this isn't an isolated incident any longer."

And as to her rather crazy idea when Uly buys into it the woman can't help but grin. "Great. Let's aim for a mid-range profile, neither poor, nor rich, but something similar to the college aged kids. I highly doubt the kidnappers will want to take too many more high profile names. That could backfire upon them."

Which brings Dani back to the third victim, the one she's been tasked with by Emery to help with. Again the woman's smart phone is unlocked and with a few taps to the screen Moonstar brings up a page on socialites and when she stops on one specific profile the Agent slides her phone over to Ulysses.

The picture upon the lit-up screen is of one Emma Frost.

"That's the latest missing person. As we look for any connecting factors, outside of power sets, let's make sure to keep her in mind as well. If you could also possibly scrub through any of our in-house programs for anything related to her that would be great."

———

He makes just the slightest face at his precious codework being dubbed 'the breadcrumb code.' It's fitting, sure, but still! "Soon…ish. Before the end of the week, definitely," Ulysses promises. He takes mental notes for the suggestions Moonstar makes about their secondary plan, nodding. "Shouldn't take too long to whip something up. The real work will be going into the input."

It's a good thing that he's finished his coffee, because he's sure he would have choked on it if he were drinking when Moonstar passes over that phone with the previously unnamed missing person. His eyes widen, flicking from the picture on screen to his fellow agent as if to ask if she's doubly sure that Emma Frost is also a victim. Numbly he nods as he looks back at the phone again before passing it back to Moonstar, almost fumbling it in the process. "Yeah, I'll…do that. So obviously that disappearance hasn't been reported…" Because it'd be all over the news if it were, that much he's sure of. But if he hadn't felt the pressure before, now he really does.

———

End of the week. That brings a prompt nod from the woman and also a flash of a smile.

However, it's his reaction to the news of just *who* the third victim is that causes Dani to snort ever so softly.

"Not reported." She agrees, "And it needs to stay that way." She adds, even as she accepts her phone back, fumbled or not.

"But clearly whoever these kidnappers are they are good. The faster we can potentially locate them the better." Which brings her to her next question, "Can you send me over anything else you've found out about the missing people? And just remember don't discount any possible clue, no matter how small. I get the feeling this case is going to come down to the nitty gritty of the smallest of facts."

"And thank you, Agent Arngrim, I do appreciate you listening to what I have to say and wanting to help. I know SHIELD has enough of its own problems and we're all stretched pretty thin."

———

"Got it." Ulysses mimes zipping his lips shut in emphasis.

"I'll put together another copy of what I made for Je— erm. Our mutual friend. I haven't heard from her on follow-ups to the leads I got her, but I didn't really expect to since it was her case, unless she needed more computer work."

While he might lament that his extracurricular work's bleeding into regular work, he knows that they've still got a line dividing the two. S.H.I.E.L.D. hasn't been officially invited to the party, but as with what Moonstar says, they've got enough on their plate.

A smile flickers onto his face, one that'd flee at a moment's notice, but not without good reason to do so. "Hey, no problem. Always glad to help, Agent Moonstar. At least with things like this, I know there are things I can do."

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