Safe & Sound


Medical Staff
Color #
Friday, April 1, 22:50

The sprig of mistletoe lay on a sheet of clear glass, now a crisp golden-brown hue from the lack of moisture. A tiny bud and its corresponding stalk had been removed from the cutting three months ago, for analysis within the ACME laboratories that Doctor Sophie Conrad personally performed. When the branch began to wilt, only three days ago, she had sliced a larger part of it off for further investigation.

Now, as numbers and words were strung together upon the monitor of her desktop computer, her fingers paused their typing. A frown crossed her features as she tilted her head, the light reflecting upon her sapphirine eyes as they flickered over the document again. Then, she exhaled. She had spliced such a chemical formulation before--only once, two years ago. But, something was wrong.

Packing her mobile phone and ACME communicator into a nearby tote bag, then carefully sliding the dehydrated mistletoe into a nondescript brown paper-bag, Sophie slipped her feet back into the red-soled high-heels that sat neatly adjacent to her chair. As the report onscreen completed its upload across her devices, she turned to put on her coat and secure the office.

Beyond the glass windows of Accolade, slate-coloured rain drizzled into the pale San Franciscan fog. The scent of humidity permeated the air, even within the corridors of the ACME Headquarters. Four minutes after the lights dimmed in the office of Doctor Sophie Conrad a Chili Red MINI exited the underground carpark into the drench of precipitation.

Acton Roux

Color #
Acton Roux was not an astute man. Shrewd and astute men would never wear such a mask. In fact, it has become the strange doctor's philosophy that the smarter the man, the less of a mask he must seem to wear.

But there was one thing that Acton could pride himself upon and that was his own intuition. During the events of Kamchatka and the following result, Acton was no longer in possession of the full 886 litres of his prized golden fluid. His sample now included a new mutation of the original strand.

However to proceed, he required an example of his former strand as well. Intuitively, two years ago, Acton had sent a sample vial of precisely such a thing for the purpose of external research. To hint of his visit, he had sent to the lead researcher a mistletoe preserved in the new strand.

It had taken him many months to free his schedule after much twists and turns regarding an incorrect shipment yet he was now in San Francisco. He should have waited until morning perhaps, but in his haste and the sufficient San Francisco traffic, he arrived after closing hours as the rains began to pour.


Color #
Smoking way after hours to check out people coming and going (but mostly going) was Lee Jordan's favourite lazy behaviour. He was parked on a bench not far from ACME's Accolade complex under a street lamp full of missing cat posters and personalised stickers. His Kawasaki was nearby. The old Ninja needed its brakes changed and the rubber grips replaced. It also got a new coat of matte black paint for the sake of T, L and C. Next, he might give it new chrome fittings or replace some rusted parts.

The sky darkened fast and it started to rain, so Lee dropped his smoke in the nearest bin and got on his bike to go back to the Dorms. His people watching today was ending early, but before he got very far, he sped past in front of ACME's parking exit and ran right into the bumpers of a red Mini Cooper.

Seems like he was getting those new chrome parts sooner than he'd planned.


Medical Staff
Color #
If anyone at ACME Headquarters slept, they would not be sleeping now. Pulling her palm away from the centre of her steering wheel, the silence that followed the sound of a horn seemed deathly as Sophie stared at the man who had fallen off his toppled Kawasaki.

Unbuckling her seatbelt and scrambling from her seat, no less than three different questions parted from her even before she identified the speeding interceptor.

"Lee Jordan."

Sharp blue eyes assessed the sheepish expression he wore, even as he moved to remove his helmet, determining no grave injuries.

"Honestly!" her hands moved to her hips in disapproval, before she extended her right to assist him to his feet, "You must come up with better ways to get my attention."
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