WARNINGS: Do not archive without my knowledge. Written by a non-native English speaker. Not proof-read. Pardon me.
NOTES: I AM SO SORRY! I wasn't supposed to postpone this chapter for so long, but college is finally taking its toll on me! Now you'll have to be patient, it will probably take me longer to post the chapters, now that I have less time to write... But I *AM* writing, do not be fooled! I'll finish this story, don't worry. =P
– SCENE 03 –
In Which Dunham And Sharp Play 20 Questions
Massive Dynamic wasn't exactly what Detective Dunham would classify as "bad resort" - it was more likely a "bad and necessary resort". She had no option but to go there and question Nina Sharp, although she was pretty sure she wouldn't get much more than dubious statements, and probably some lies in the middle, just to make it hard to sort them out.
She had been literally kidnapped by the woman only one month ago, whom had made sure to throw the detective in a lake while very well tied up and inside of a pine coffin. Olivia was pretty sure that this would be considered attempt of murder in any state, but she knew better: without hard proof against Nina Sharp, her accusations would fall on deaf ears.
As she drove to Massive Dynamic, many possible dialogues and accusations popped in her mind, most of them related to her own businesses with the older woman, but she knew she had to do her work before she could worry about herself – she had to find the Watcher that killed Kelsey, and bring some closure to a grieving sister. Only then she would feel comfortable enough to pursue her own questions.
As she stepped inside the entry hall of Massive Dynamic, Detective Dunham had already made up her mind about her speech, and how she would try to squeeze every single piece of information she could get from Nina Sharp – but all of her resolve dissolved like salt in water when she entered the woman's office and was met by not one, but two people: Nina Sharp herself and no one less than Lieutenant Broyles.
"Detective Dunham", greeted Broyles, turning to her, anything but happy to see her there. "What a coincidence to meet you here".
"I could say the same" replied Olivia, not sure what to make of it.
"Lieutenant Broyles was just leaving" said Nina, closing a date-book she had in hands. "Have a seat, and let's talk about what brings you here once again".
"It was a pleasure talking to you, Ms Sharp. I assure you things will end in a suitable way for both parties" murmured Broyles, taking off his hat in recognition. "Have a good evening, Dunham" he said to the other woman, just the slightest tone of irony in his voice, as he put his hat back on and walked past Olivia, not even sparing her a glance.
When his footsteps were out of earshot, the detective turned to Nina Sharp and said: "You tried to kill me".
"And I have failed" replied the other woman, sitting down and indicating the chair next to Dunham. "Sit, and I'll explain everything".
Olivia snorted. "I know you're all about making your way in enterprise's politics and all, Ms Sharp, but I don't see how you could possibly explain an attempted murder".
Nina's resolve was rock-solid, though, and she just stared at the detective, frowning, inviting her to sit down and listen – almost challenging her to sit down and listen. Olivia Dunham had a weak spot for challenges, even the unspoken ones – especially the unspoken ones – so it took her all but five seconds to finally give in and sit down. At the very least, she thought, as she took off her hat, this would be a very entertaining tall-tale to listen to.
"If I wanted you dead, Ms Dunham, you can be sure that you would be" Nina started, leaning back on her chair. "The Reiden lake incident had nothing to do with an attempted murder."
Olivia snorted. "And how do you call that? Sending me to a place far, far away where I wouldn't be able to tell anyone about... William Bell?"
Nina Sharp shifted uncomfortably on her seat. "We used you as bait to Peter Bishop... Unfortunately, at that time I didn't know the Watchers had already been done with me."
Olivia shook her head, feeling a bit lost. "Done with you?"
"Those men are dangerous – I'm sure I've told you that already" explained Nina. "I thought we had them under control, but I was wrong. They have many serendipitous manners to fool you into believing they are on your side."
"'They have an agenda of their own'" quoted Dunham, thinking about what Walter Bishop had told her not long ago.
"Exactly", agreed Nina.
"And what is it? Their agenda?"
She stared sceptically at Detective Dunham. "Why are you asking me this question, Detective? You already know I don't have the answer for this one."
"You see" Olivia crooked her head to one side, giving the red-haired woman a cynical smile. "I don't quite believe everything you tell me as being written in stone."
Nina shrugged. "Believe in whatever you want to believe, Ms Dunham. I don't have the answer for this question."
"How did you contact them?"
"I didn't, they always came to me."
"The man who attacked me with the quantum laser..."
"Mr. Gemini. Is he the leader?"
"'Leader' isn't an easy word to explain, at least not when it involves the Watchers."
Dunham snorted once again. "I'm not here to discuss semantics with you, Ms Sharp. I want answers."
"And I've been giving you them, even though I have no reason to do so." replied Nina sharply, leaning forward. "I don't know much about the Watchers than you do, and you should be aware of that. They appear and disappear as they please, and this is how they work."
"Mr Gemini killed Kelsey because you ordered him to."
Nina swallowed and stared intently at Olivia. "This is some serious accusations you are making, Detective."
"Her murder is still unsolved, Ms Sharp." Dunham simply shrugged, and carefully observed the other woman's reactions. "I'm merely gathering the facts I've been presented, and so far they all point at one direction."
"And that direction would be me?" Nina was too calm for someone being accused of such an act, but again, Dunham wasn't expecting anything different.
"We know about the quantum laser" teased Olivia, giving a half-smile of victory.
Nina let out a laugh. "Anyone in our health department could have access to that tool, Detective. This isn't hard proof. And even though you haven't asked directly, No, I did not ask Mr Gemini to kill that poor girl. Why would I do that?"
"Hm, to get her heart?" offered Dunham, suggestively and ironically.
Nina Sharp shook her head, dismissing this option. "Why would I want her heart? I wanted the glass heart, not some actress's defective heart."
Upon hearing that, Olivia jumped right on it. "Defective, was it? Her heart didn't work to open the 'door between the universes'?"
That did the trick. Nina's poker face dissolved as she clenched her jaw and took a deep breath. "I don't know what you've overheard while snooping around my house, Detective, but things are far more complicated than that."
"More complicated than opening a door to another universe?" Dunham felt like laughing, but just stared at Nina, sceptical.
"Ms Sharp" the call came from the door, and both women turned in that direction. Nina's secretary, all dressed in black, was at the door. "The council has already been gathered, they are only waiting for you."
"Well, this twenty question game was all very fun to play, but if you excuse me, Detective Dunham, I have appointments to attend to" she said, as she got up from her seat. "You can show yourself out, I'm sure."
"I'm not done yet" said Olivia, even though she knew that, at least for the time being, that would be all she would get from Nina Sharp.
"If you have anything solid against me, which I doubt, then we'll talk again" replied Nina, halfway to the door. "But let me give you one advice. Just think about it. To whom did the Watchers turn over the heart of glass?"
And with that, Nina left Detective Dunham alone in her office – and when Olivia turned and didn't see the secretary, she leaned forward over the table and opened the date-book where the page was marked – the date was two days from the present day, and there, she read: "Philip. Betty Brown's Bar, 9pm."
IN WHICH PETER MAKES HIS APPEARANCE