Title: Next Time, I'll Stay Dead
Location: Maxwell Ranch
Synopsis: It has been almost a month since Heather was believed killed in action. She returns, and almost wishes she hadn't... than has a long talk with Pyotr
Over Central California, there comes an odd sound, but easily placed. It has been heard at least twice before in these parts. A Mothership is moving into a holding position.
<ResRadio> Ham Tyler says, "That's not just me, right? Someone else hears a Mothership."
<ResRadio> Elizabeth Maxwell says, "Not just you..."
<ResRadio> Juliet Parrish says, "Unfortunately."
<ResRadio> A female voice speaks over the radio, but one without a Visitor Resonance. "I wouldn't worry my friends..."
<ResRadio> Ryan Rivers says, "I didn't bring it with me." Ryan pauses for a second as the radio gives the sound of a car door slamming. "Just got he-Huh?"
<ResRadio> Elizabeth Maxwell says, "I didn't touch anything, I was just sitting here..." she briefly pauses at the voice. "Hmm?"
<ResRadio> Juliet Parrish says, "I don't care who brought them. It's too late to worry about that."
<ResRadio> Ham Tyler says, "it's.... Right above the yard... If they want us dead... we're dead."
<ResRadio> Elizabeth Maxwell says, "... Uh... yeah. If we live through this, remind me that we need to dig something a lot deeper, in case we ever get directly bombarded."
Juliet Parrish is standing in the middle of the yard, head tilted all the way back to let her look up at the belly of the mothership.
<ResRadio> A Female Visitor Voice says, "Now, now, we are only here to return a couple lost sheep..." (Jennifer)
Ham Tyler frowns slightly, and is staring up as well, "What the hell is going on..."
Ham Tyler yells out, "Elizabeth... Get yourself in a Squad Ship... Anyone that can get to the Barn, get there... Liz... Try to get them to safety!"
<ResRadio> Heather O'Leary says, "Elizabeth... Ham... Julie... They are... Friends."
<ResRadio> Ryan Rivers says, "Nice to know you guys are still as confusing as ever."
<ResRadio> Elizabeth Maxwell says, "... I would make a joke, but it'd be horribly inappropriate at the moment. Hi Heather."
<ResRadio> Ham Tyler says, "Ryan... I'm as confused as you... trust me."
<ResRadio> Elizabeth Maxwell says, "Heather, if that's you, hurry up and get back down here. You have any idea how cold the bed has been without you in it?"
(Heather O'Leary) - Visitor Skyfighter #199 undocks from the Mothership, and begins a slow descent from the Hangar bay, to the yard of the ranch. It lands in the center of the yard, and the hatch slowly opens.
(Jennifer) - Mothership begins to pull away, as soon as the Skyfighter undocks.
<ResRadio> Juliet Parrish says, "Elizabeth, keep it in your pants. Heather...well, we'll talk when you get down here."
Juliet Parrish turns to Ham, and merely arches an eyebrow.
Ham Tyler watches the skyfighter drop out, and the Mothership moves off, and turns to Julie, "Elizabeth... the last time your girlfriend came back from a Mothership...." He leaves the rest unsaid.
Dallas Foster steps from the barn and glances to the mothership and the skyfighter before then looking to those who are standing around. The large man doesn't say anything, just stands and watches, hoping for some explanation
Elizabeth Maxwell glances over at Ham, shaking her head a little bit. "I've been in limited contact with her. She isn't. That's the inappropriate joke I was mentioning over the radio."
Juliet Parrish turns on Elizabeth then, and the look on her face is -not- pleased. "I beg your pardon!"
Ham Tyler says nothing, but as the hatch opens, his hand rests on the laser pistol under his ever-present black leather jacket, "Nice to know these things..."
Elizabeth Maxwell shakes her head a little. "Not /that/ close. I didn't know they were coming back tonight. Last I heard from her was a few days ago."
Ryan Rivers steps out calmly from the barn as well, watching as the ship lifts off and the skyfighter make its way down. The fact that he has his jacket pulled away from his holster shows how trusting he is of this situation. For the time being, he's silent.
Dallas Foster moves a hand to his back where he has a large specialized holster holding a mini Uzi. Dallas waits to see what happens before pulling the weapon, by the looks of it with his hands behind his back he looks like he is just standing at ease.
A Long, Red haired woman, wearing the standard Red uniform of the Visitors steps from the Skyfighter. She is not wearing a weapon, or a pair of sunglasses. She moves slowly, still recovering from wounds. She stops, as soon as she steps off the stairs, and holds her hands up. "I... uh.. Come in peace?" No resonance... Human, or some new trick?
"But you knew she was alive, and you didn't say a word? Elizabeth!" There is genuine fury in Juliet's voice, something that isn't often heard from the doctor. Her eyes are blazing as she stares at Elizabeth before finally, sharply, turning her back on the younger woman, to turn back towards the red-haired woman. "We've heard that before." she snaps.
Ham Tyler says softly, "Julie... relax..."
A long sigh comes from the woman in uniform, "Dammit Julie. I told her not to tell you..." Heather crosses her arms over her chest, "I wasn't sure I wasn't in a conversion chamber for most of the time... I didn't want her to tell you, and than, come to find out I've been converted."
"Oh, you're not off the hook, Heather," Juliet sends a look to Ham that is meant to quell his suggestion that she 'relax'. "Whether or not you were in a conversion chamber, we should have known. We could have planned contingencies for either case. You should -know- that. Both of you."
Elizabeth Maxwell peers over at Julie. "I had an extremely sporadic, very weak contact that could easily have been my own imagination wanting her back as anything else. I couldn't be completely sure about it, until far later on." She peers at Heather and back to Julie. "And she isn't converted, anyway."
Dallas Foster removes his hand from his back, no weapon in his hands, seemingly a bit more at ease now that everyone seems to know whoever just came off the ship. Dallas clears his throat and speaks up. "Eevrythin jus fine, no shootin need ta be done?"
Ham Tyler remains quiet, but glances at Dallas and shrugs slightly.
Ryan Rivers watches the interaction between Juliet and Elizabeth, his own expression looking rather unamused. While he has strong feelings on the matter himself, the policeman figures he needs to keep his mouth shut for the time being.
Heather O'Leary sighs, "Hell Julie, if I could have contacted you... I would have. I wasn't sure I was getting through to Elizabeth..." She sighs.
Dallas Foster moves to stand beside Ryan, the only man that has spoken to him yet since his arrival on the ranch. The tall black man looks down at Ryan. "Em I missin somethin here, boss?"
Ham Tyler moves over to Dallas and Ryan, and shakes his head, "I think we shall let the women work this out..."
The East Coaster shrugs to Dallas. "Not anything I can shed light on... But I think the confusion is why there's trouble," the young man replies as he continues to watch. Ham's words get a verbal response, though he still keeps his eyes trained on Heather, still a bit wary. "When I'm sure everything's checked out, then I'll be able to let this be. Unless there's a problem, I'm searching the ship." Looks like Ryan's gotten a bit more of a backbone since he's been gone.
Kelly slips off the back of the ship, glancing around just a little, and staying quiet. She doesn't want any part of a fight, nope.
Dallas Foster reaches back around behind himself and the sound of a holster being snapped closed is heard to the trained eye before the large black man just grunts. "So eh guess ets jus a wohman dispute?" A bulky laugh is heard resounding from his chest before he glances around the area. "Odd place fer an HQ" At Ryan's words, Dallas arches a brow. "Want help?"
Ham Tyler nods slightly, "Feel free...." Than another person steps from the Skyfighter, and he frowns, recognizing her.
Juliet Parrish just continues to stand there, shaking her head slightly. She's apparently finished debating this with Heather and Elizabeth, but it's fairly clear she isn't happy about it all.
Heather O'Leary sighs softly, and turns to look at everyone else, than turns for the skyfighter, "I'll... just... leave."
Elizabeth Maxwell sighs, and heads right for Heather, shaking her head at Julie along the way. "Heather... no. Stay here with me? Or take me with you at least, if leaving? I've been waiting long enough..."
Juliet Parrish sighs, shaking her head as Heather turns away. "No one said that, O'Leary." she mutters before turning to look between her and Elizabeth. "But I do want to speak with you both later."
Kelly glances over at Ham and shrugs very slightly, rolling her eyes. "I'd say something, but I don't want to get involved with the... situation, between those three."
Ham Tyler smirks at the Visitor Resonance, that is in Kelly's voice, and shrugs, "Well, you know, you got a Freedom Network medal of valor for your death, so... Perhaps staying out of a fight is a good idea."
Heather O'Leary nods slightly to Julie, and hugs Elizabeth to her, "I won't leave... I just wish I could have convinced Jennifer to let me get word to you..."
Dallas Foster looks then to Ham, Dallas holds out a large hand to Ham. "Well, suh... em Dallas Foster" He awaits a response from the man. "Ex navy seal"
Juliet Parrish sighs softly, turning away from Heather then to instead see who's there as far as Visitor guests.
Ham Tyler glances at Dallas, "Ham Tyler." In his mind, that is all he needs say. "Welcome to our three ring circus."
Ryan Rivers makes his way toward the starfighter unless he gets stopped by someone. "If you want to join me, go right ahead," he says to Dallas. Either way, he'll give a nod to Kelly as he tries to pass by her to check out the ship. As he does, he mutters something about pulling an all-nighter to get here.
Dallas Foster looks up as Ryan speaks and Dallas moves after the man at a jog, moving to then walk beside Ryan towards the ship when he reaches the man. "Eh will foller yer lead"
Elizabeth Maxwell hugs Heather tightly to her, and clings to her very quietly, glancing over and around at the others.
Ham Tyler moves over to Julie, and says softly, "This is Kelly, one of Elias' unit..."
Kelly nods just a little at the others. "Well, getting involved in the girl fighting here would just give them a body to find, I figure." She winks then, and smiles to everyone. "Hello all of you."
(Sirian) Heather O'Leary continues to hold Elizabeth, and says softly to her, "I love you."
Juliet Parrish nods slightly to Ham before her attention shifts to Kelly. "Hi," she answers quietly.
Heather O'Leary says to Ryan, still holing Liz in her arms, "There is no one else aboard..."
Elizabeth Maxwell clings to Heather tightly, not bothering to notice anything or anyone else, nuzzled up closely to her.
Ham Tyler stands near Julie and Kelly, watching them talk, while nearby Ryan and Dallas seem to be getting ready to check on the Skyfighter, and Heather and Elizabeth are hugging, rather tightly.
Kelly offers Julie a smile and a nod. "I'm guessing I'll be spending the night here, at any rate. I'll surprise Elias tomorrow."
"We have plenty of room," Juliet agrees, though she tilts her head up to look at the ship. "Though leaving that sitting over us is a dubious move..."
Ham Tyler nods "I'll make sure someone moves it."
"I'll double check to make sure," Ryan offers before he goes in. He actually draws his gun. Yeah, he really is being careful. He just nods to Dallas and silently begins to search the ship, carefully checking each corner. It's like he really expects there something to be in there. He's learned the hard way that it's best to waste your effort for nothing nine or ten times in a row to make sure you don't miss the one time when everything rides on just a little bit of caution.
Heather O'Leary whispers something softly in Elizabeth's Ear, and sighs. 'They don't trust me.'
Alex exits from the New Barn, hovering at the entrance for a few moments as her sight is greeted by a number of people, a Skyfighter, and even one individual going into the ship with a weapon. She looks over her shoulder to her Shotgun and arches a brow softly, before walking forward slowly, still trying to appraise the situation.
Ham Tyler glances at Alex, and nods at her, "Welcome to the party. Seems the dead return to life tonight, and didn't tell anyone." His hand indicates first Heather, and than Kelly.
The inside of the Skyfighter is empty of other people, human or Visitor.
Elizabeth Maxwell snuggles Heather softly, rolling her eyes and shrugging just a little, whispering back. 'They'll get over it.'
Alex recognizes Heather, but Kelly is quite another story. She blinks softly and then presses her lips together, "I'm just sorry I wasn't able to be part of the rescue...I guess." She says, but then she looks at the Skyfighter, and then at Kelly, "Or was there a rescue?"
Ham Tyler says simply to Alex, "No, seems someone else brought her here... Although I haven't worked that out yet. A Mothership hovered over head, she flew the Skyfighter down with Kelly, one of Elias' team members, also thought dead..."
Kelly smiles over at Ham, shrugging just slightly. "Might want to be thanking Jennifer for that, later on, if you can get hold of her."
Heather O'Leary turns to look over everyone, and she sighs, "Guys... I'm sorry everyone thought I was dead. Really I am... If I could have informed you, I would have. I wasn't allowed to use any kind of radio, until tonight. I wanted to contact you first... but... I had to tell the President not to worry first... and he wouldn't let me go until he could verify I am not converted. So... Well, I had to resort to trying to think loudly at Elizabeth, and I... I didn't know if it would work, or if she heard me..."
Alex nods very slowly and looks up again. She swallows once and then shifts her gaze down towards Heather. She nods again, "Must have been quite an odyssey, I'm sorry I couldn't be there to make sure what happened didn't happen. We did get the Helo out..."
Heather O'Leary arches an eyebrow, "That's good... but that must have been after the Raid on the Movie Lot."
Ham Tyler takes Julie's arm, and leads her away, to let the others talk, without two of the bosses around.
Juliet Parrish is pulled away without any protest. She doesn't really have anything to add, after all.
Ryan Rivers finally makes his way out of the alien craft, giving a simple, "Yeah, nothing there." Before he looks around. "So, what happened while I was gone? Other than people being on the news for being dead when they weren't." He has a weak smirk on his face, able to find a bit of humor in this once he's gotten over the initial shock. Or at least able to put on a smirk despite the shock, one of the two.
Alex hmms, and looks up towards the Craft when Ryan exits. She shrugs softly and smirks, "I don't seem to know a lot of what goes on."
Heather O'Leary forces a weak and tired smile, "At least they pinned the medal on her chest, not mine..." She motions to Kelly. She sighs softly, kisses Liz's forehead and looks at Alex, "Did you get Liz clear of me, that night?"
Ryan Rivers nods. "Well, I've been up since 5AM two days ago, so I'm gunna head out before I fall asleep on my feet. I'll see you guys later though." With that, Ryan just moves to get into the Ranchhouse and crash on the couch, not even caring to try and move to an actual bed or even remove his holster or the sword that's sheathed on his back.
Heather O'Leary just watches Ryan leave, unsure what to say, or do, or just about anything.
**Later that Night**
Heather O'Leary steps into the Lab, mostly walking around to get a feel for the place, after being gone for almost a month.
It's not uncommon for Pyotr to be found in the labs. Having spent more and more time there the past number of months. Lab or with Angelica. The Russian scientist has become rather a hermit. He rarely even goes on raids or missions, instead spending hours if not days on end trying to crack Visitor technology. Fueled by Power Drinks, Power bars The occasional cigarette break and, of course, lots of music. Right now the Russian has his head stuck in some device of his own creation, using a visitor welding laser he picked up to make connections inside the box. next to him is his beat up boombox, cranked fairly high.. the pseudo-funky neo-disco punk rock of the Scissor Sisters heavy in the air.
Heather O'Leary hears the music and is drawn in to see who is working in the lab. She pokes her head in and frowns. She'd say something to the man she can see, but there is little chance of him hearing.
Pyotr Zagadka finishes his circuit and leans back, lifting his small goggles and setting the welder aside. He raises his arms, stretching them high.. his back creaking.. The song stops and the tape.. an actual tape.. clicks to and end. "hello." he says, not looking over his shoulders.
(Russian) Heather O'Leary smiles, and says, "Hello Comrade Pyotr."
(Russian) Pyotr Zagadka says, "And you as well, comrade. You look very good for a dead woman.""
Heather O'Leary chuckles softly, and moves in, kissing Pyotr's cheeks, as is custom, she thinks, in Russia, "I never really died... The Visitor Doctor that treated me said it was a near thing, and I might have died, without Visitor Intervention..."
Pyotr Zagadka can only chuckle and shake his head. "Well that is good." he says, almost matter of factly as if the whole death/life thing is no big deal. "You are lucky you came back.. I was going to start stripping your plane next week.
Heather O'Leary chuckles, softly, "Well, that might have broken my heart a bit, but she doesn't fly at the moment. Her Avionics are down... her weapons systems are gone." Heather sighs, looks for a spot to sit that won't ruin something, and sees a tiny section of the bench. She sits there gingerly, "In fact, the only thing on her that works, at the moment, is the engines. I could fly her north, to get her repaired, but... It would be dangerous."
Pyotr Zagadka nods and pulls a smoke out of his pocket.. placing it between his lips but not lighting up. "Well, maybe if I can crack the visitor antigrav soon then I can maybe upgrade your harrier." he says, looking at the control box he is working on. "As it is.. I can try repairing her if you wish, conventionally. I worked on a few MiGs in my time. I am sure I could harrow out your Harrier."
Heather O'Leary nods, "Between you, Liz and myself, I am sure we can get something going, if we can cobble together the parts... The Avionics and Radar worry me the most... Weapons, I know I could mount Some Skyfighter Lasers on her, and do better than the Missiles she has... but I was really hoping to keep her as completely Human teched as possible... I doubt it will be possible though."
Pyotr Zagadka smiles. "Heather.. if I can crack the anti-grav then it WILL be human tech. Human built anti-grav. I am so close I can feel it. The math is adding up. It us just the application. As it is... I have been working on a project you may find interesting. as you know we cannot use nuclear weapons on Motherships.. and the higher powered Missles get led awry, da?"
Heather O'Leary nods, "Without disabling their tracking systems, yes... Except against Skyfighters, but Mavericks, Exocets, and all the rest won't work on Motherships, with the Guidance Package intact..."
Pyotr Zagadka nods. "How would you like a weapon that has the energy impact of a single digit kiloton explosion with no radiation and no need of guidance?"
Heather O'Leary arches an eyebrow, "That sounds interesting... Would it be... Man Portalable? Or mounted on something?"
Pyotr Zagadka smiles. "It could be mounted on the back of a 4x4 or a van"
Heather O'Leary nods, "Meaning a Helicopter or Jet might mount one, if it wouldn't screw up the aerodynamics and performance of the plane... But even portable by a 4X4 or Van could be useful."
Pyotr Zagadka motions to the drawing board to the side.. an incredibly complex hand drawn blueprint with notations in Russian and English and math-ese. "That is Maelstrom.. My newest project." he says. "You know what a railgun, is, da?"
Heather O'Leary nods slightly, "The DoD was trying to get a working prototype of that going... a few years back, but they couldn't get it down to anything portable..."
Pyotr Zagadka grins. "I know. I saw.. reports.” he coughs once. Hey he WAS a Russian engineer and worked once in a while for their DoD counterpart. "You were able to make one "small enough" to mount in a battleship.. taking up most of a deck. As you know, they use a linear magnetic accelerator to speed up a projectile to hyper velocities. Now that much magnetic equipment is large.. so what if we were able to replace all those magnetic generators with.. Anti-grav generators from Sky fighters?"
Heather O'Leary looks thoughtful, "That would shrink the size..." She moves to the drawing board, "But the amount of power you need to power the anti-grav generators on a Skyfighter, is almost half the power plant... but... since the 'projectiles' would be much lighter than a skyfighter..." She looks the blueprints over, and nods, making a small adjustment, to one part, her own Engineering degree from the Naval Academy showing. "No problem with power, could probably jury rig three of them to run off the power supplied by one Power Plant, if you were willing to go for less mobility..." She shrugs, "Cross wire the system to a lower level for the mobile units, I suppose."
Pyotr Zagadka has to laugh now. "Da da, you are getting it.. good." he says. "Plus, you must remember.. The AG field in a starfighter is very.. for lack of a better term.. loose. Narrowing and confining the field in multiple tightly woven layers could yield us with a field many times stronger for the normal accounted energy usage."
Heather O'Leary smiles, "Damn, where were you when I needed you. I could have used this genius of yours, when I had to shoot down the Houston Mothership." She looks at the plans, and asks, "Do you want my help? I have my Engineering Degree from Annapolis... I was never great at the math.. but I held my own."
Pyotr Zagadka nods and straightens a bit. "Da, I would be HONORED by your help. You and Liz are the only two who have the know-how and training to be of any help.." he is thoughtful for a moment. "Not that the others are not smart. They can do things I am not trained for. Angelica is a GREAT doctor and I love her with all my heart. And Comrade Ham is a great soldier whom I admire and respect greatly but.. I need people who are technically inclined." he says.. as if he misses the company of intellectuals a wee bit.
Heather O'Leary chuckles, "You are pretty good in a fight yourself, Comrade." She smiles, "Besides, Julie won the last war, almost single-handedly... Brain power is needed for this war to be successful. And I'd be honored to work on any of your projects... If I didn't say it before, I was impressed with that four Barreled Laser you created..." She continues to look at stare at the Blue Prints, almost as if something is wrong, than she asks, "You said you could make this portable by a van? Think we could rig the motor of the van to somehow when it sits in park, charge a Capacitor, to fire off the weapon, instead of gutting power plants?"
Pyotr Zagadka flushes at the compliment, looking a little unused to praise. "I do my best." he says softly.. then straightens up again. "Dah, that may work. We cannot use Skyfighter power generators forever." he sighs and kneads the bridge of his nose, frustrated. "For years I have worked the math out for things. faster Then light travel. Quantum mechanics. Zero-Point Energy. But even with all my engineering know-how we haven't had the technology to MANIPULATE the forces required to make the math WORK. Now we COULD have them, with the Visitors. I.. WE.. We could come up with different technologies then they have.. if we had access to THEIR current technology.. If there were still many human scientists.. But neither seems likely. I need so much more then what we have."
Heather O'Leary nods slightly, and yawns suddenly. "Sorry. I promise this is not boring, but I've been up for the last 24 hours, explaining to many people how it is I am alive." She moves to Pyotr, "I think I am going to go to bed, and tomorrow, we will see what Skyfighter we have that we can take apart. I know at least one of them was missing the Laser Cores, before I 'died'. That one could be our test bed." She rests a hand on Pyotr's arm, "Seriously now, Pyotr. Never think of yourself as a second class Resistance Member. I'm not as smart as you or Liz, and I know it, but I'd rather be down here, than fighting. At least down here, I can try to help make something to win the War itself, not just win a battle... although, the battles are important too."
Pyotr Zagadka smiles.. his haggard face and five o’clock shadow making him look weary.. but his eyes shine brightly. he squeezes your hand. "Thank you for the kind words, my friend." he says softly.. then stifles a long yawn. "Perhaps it is best if I eat and rest as well. Angelica complains of a cold bed.. and the fact I do not eat well." and it is true.. it looks like he has lost 20 pounds. "We can look at the skyfighter after I get my new shipment of Insulin. Sleep well, Heather.. And it is GOOD to have you back."
Heather O'Leary smiles, "It is good to be back. Now you go make Angelica happy, I'll go keep Liz Warm." She winks, and slips from the lab.