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 Inception - Hollingsworth Job

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Prisma*Illya
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Sun Mar 01, 2015 8:33 pm

Sofie was beginning to feel a headache coming on. She wanted desperately to tell John that she no longer had the tolerance to deal with him, but admitting weakness was an indulgence she did not allow herself. Instead, she decided to take a more direct approach, circumventing this tit for tat.

"If I didn't know any better, John, I'd think you were trying to sabotage this night," she said quietly, turning toward the window. Which was a shame, really, since he had managed to be quite engaging when he wasn't making a complete ass of himself.

"No, I have a rental, thank you," Sofie replied, thanking God, karma, and the rest of metaphysical existence for that happy mercy. In a little while, she'd be alone and able to relax. Maybe a nice, steaming bath and some wine...

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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:14 am

Rina

Rina dialed Sofie's number; the ceremony should be over and they should be parting their ways. Interested in knowing the capacity of their pointman, Rina called Sofie. Hoping Sofie would share her insight about the man.

"Hey, Sofie, it's me. How was your date? Likable?" She asked softly, and smoothly. Well, Rina, actually did not expect "good" answer. In fact, Rina would be surprised if John managed to get some points from Sofie as all men fail to do so... Even Rina's ex, who was considered gentleman, did not get good point at all.

'How about Han?' thought Rina for a second, but she shook that idea; blushing, remembering the incident with him.

"I hope he was.... well, at least, entertaining.....?" she added, asked in hopeful voice.
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Wed Mar 04, 2015 2:41 pm

"Sometimes, sabotaging the evening is better than sabotaging the work environment." John responded softly as he pulled off of the highway and onto the street where his office was located. Anything she might have responded with was cut off by the sound of a phone ringing, and John kept his attention on the road as she answered it.

A moment later, he pulled into the parking space he had vacated earlier and got out to open Sofie's door for her. Even if he was trying to ruin the evening, he could at least be a gentleman about it...
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Wed Mar 04, 2015 4:08 pm

Sofie's attempts at a response were interrupted by the sound of her phone ringing. Actually, she wasn't sure how to respond anyway. If this wasn't a sure-fire way to sabotage the work environment, she wasn't sure what was. Fortunately for the both of them, she was a professional, and her skin was thicker than that.

Sliding her phone from her purse and answering, Sofie smiled and gave her greetings to Rina, who predictably called to inquire about the evening's events.

As she heard John get out, she contemplated telling the truth, but there was no need to stir up more negative feelings.

As John reached for the door, she opened it herself, striking him hard and nearly knocking him over as she exited the car with a light smile.

"It was a lovely outing," she said simply, turning and walking toward her car without a backward glance.

--------------------

Several Days Later

"Thank you, darling," Sofie said, smiling to Rina as the other set down a holding basket with several cups of coffee for the team. Knowing that Rina knew her preferences, Sofie was not disappointed to see her Vienna coffee with a sprig of cinnamon nestled in the corner.

She could see John approaching the table. They had had very little contact since the night of the part, and Sofie preferred to keep it that way. Snatching another coffee up, she headed over to the work bench where Elliot was deep in concentration, capping off a mixture and smiling to himself.

This was awkward. She hadn't really thought this one through.

"Tribute for your hard work," she said, smiling as she set it down. Elliot regarded the coffee for a moment before pursing his lips.

"I find caffeine to affect brain functions in a mildly adverse way," he commented, picking it up warily.

"Social convention dictates that you accept the offer," Sofie countered cheerily. Elliot sighed and nodded, taking a sip before smacking his lips thoughtfully. Well, he was a bit of a dork, but he was rather cute, really.

She led the way, Elliot trailing dutifully behind her as they made their way to the center of the workshop, where the chairs had been lined up in a circle for their meeting. John was already seated, so Sofie maneuvered herself to have Elliot take the seat next to John, and she beside him. That way, it would be most difficult for him to look at her.

"Well, Rina, you have the floor," Sofie said pleasantly, taking a sip of her coffee and waiting expectantly.

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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Thu Mar 05, 2015 12:37 am

Rina

"Thank you, Sofie." Rina smiled warmly, it was obvious what would be the next procedure. It was for Rina to call the pointman to tell them what he found out about the mark and about the possible extraction locations. And if it is possible, the pointman should be able to tell if the mark is able to make subconscious militarized or not.

And the pointman, John, might also have extra information about the people around him as well. Which may give few more people for Sofie to study.

In any case, Rina smiled confidently at her crew members, and looked at John. "Well, John, please, tell us what you have about the target." She asked politely, giving the stage to John.
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Thu Mar 05, 2015 4:40 pm

John rose from his seat when called upon by Rina, giving her a curt nod. "Gerard Mercier. Thirty-five years old and an artist on the rise. According to birth records, Mercier was born and raised in Australia, but he moved to the States for college and has been here since then, aside from the occasional trip back home, which generally lasts for about a week."

"Mercier seems to be very personable, but in a way that isn't too flashy. He's more down-to-earth than most of the highbrow artists he's often displayed with. In fact, there are some circles of the art world that have a pretty big bet riding on who can find out his guilty pleasure, since he's obviously not displayed it in public."

"Notable connections are Lana Hollingsworth, his fiance and our Client's daughter, and Anna Mercier, Gerard's mother, and his only living relative. His bank accounts show monthly deposits to an institute in Australia that's known for taking care of dementia patients. I did a closer inspection of their patient lists, and found Anna's name on them. From what records I could access, it appears that she's been within the confines of the institute for the last three years, and her condition is slowly deteriorating. Odds are good that in another year, she won't remember her own name, much less her son's."

"Lana is slightly more of an enigma, partly because of her father's security. The man has got to have some seriously deep pockets to pay for the kind of service that can keep me out of her records. For the most part, what I know about her is public record, although I can confirm that she hasn't been spending her nights at her own apartment for the last two months. I also found an interesting little tidbit in that she visited a pregnancy center about a week ago. It wasn't stashed behind her father's security because it was a deviation from her schedule, something that she apparently did without his knowledge. I haven't been able to get the results of her tests though, since her medical records are sealed."

John paused for a moment, giving everyone in the room time to process the information before he continued. "Mercier doesn't seem to have an obvious weakness, aside from the people he cares for. So, the only way I can see to manipulate him would be through either Lana or his mother. That aside, I found no evidence that his mind is militarized. However, as an artist, he will tend to have more abstract or complex thoughts. So, attention to details will be important in whatever we do."
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Thu Mar 05, 2015 8:50 pm

Sofie nodded quietly and raised a hand to delicately stir her coffee.

"So, we have a lot of public domain information that doesn't add up to much," she said lightly, taking a sip of her coffee. "And some details we already knew. And it only took a few days."

The air in the room shifted noticeably. Elliot squirmed slightly in his chair and began to chug at his coffee, if only to occupy his hands, seemingly forgetting that he didn't enjoy it.

"Well, I hope the Architect has something workable for us, at least," Sofie sighed, returning to stirring her coffee.

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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Fri Mar 06, 2015 6:24 pm

John's face was impassive when Sofie cut in, and he remained silent for a few moments after she'd finished, making sure she'd said her peace. "What I have, and let's be honest, you made this about me, is a complied list of everything the Mark has done in the last two weeks. Every purchase, every phonecall, every party he attended, with or without his fiance. I have a compiled list of all of his artistic works, where they're displayed, how much they sold for at auction, and where he was when they were painted. I also have the blueprints and photos of the institute where his mother is being taken care of, which I have already forwarded to our Architect."

He raised a challenging eyebrow at her, as if daring her to say something else, and then, the icing on the cake... "What you could do, considering your position with the Client, is get him to loosen up a little with his daughter's security. By withholding information, he's making our job more difficult, and his daughter is involved, whether he likes it or not. So, if you're not satisfied with what I have, how about putting that pretty little ass of yours to work and finding something out for yourself?"
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Fri Mar 06, 2015 8:20 pm

If it were possible, the room became even more stiff with silence. For what seemed like the longest time, Sofie merely stared at John with an impassive expression, the faintest hint of a smile on her lips.

Then, with highly measured steps, Sofie rose from her chair and walked away from the circle. At first, it seemed as though she were simply leaving the group. But then she stopped before her desk and picked up a file before turning and walking back. She took her time in sitting down and arranging herself comfortably, fanning herself casually with the folder all the while, before looking up and addressing him.

"So if I were to have taken the liberty of getting Julian's authentication on accessing those seemingly intangible files, would you consider that pulling my weight?"

She had made a move on this shortly after the gala, as John's questions about Lana's possible pregnancy were too hard to ignore. She had been intending to use this to one-up him, rather than justifying herself, which brought a rather bittersweet taste to the whole affair.

"It's nice to hear you enjoy the view though. I do Pilates regularly," Sofie added, smirking.

[OOC: Nex, you should probably take control of the situation to keep this from escalating. As to both of you, I want to have Sofie and John go under to test out Michael's first layer and give Sofie some practice on forging Lana as a pretense to hash things out and get under more amicable terms for the time being.]

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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Fri Mar 06, 2015 11:17 pm

Rina

"Please."

Rina stood up with authority and came between two individuals, who were making uncomfortable for others "I do not know what exactly happen between you two, but hiding the information to the last minute," Rina glared at John for a second; if Sofie did not say anything, then Rina would have asked him for more information. Well, Rina would have asked him more gently and politely... Even then, John should not have withhold information from his crew. That was childish and unprofessional. He should have at least given the files to the crew from the beginning and this would not have happened. "and provoking other crews" this time, Rina's face shifted to Sofie. Rina was not angry at her, but it was a face of younger sister begging older sister to stop whatever she was doing to make the younger sister uncomfortable. "Is not acceptable. We are all professionals, and this shouldn't be the way how we handle any dislikes. Do it privately if you do. Take your sit, Mr. Lattimer." as the male get back to his sit, Rina's gentle eyes move to their youngest member; who was, in Rina's honest opinion, being professional than those two. "Well, Mr. David (Da-veed), is the first floor ready?" She asked him gently, and then her gaze shifted to Sofie and John. "If it is, I want Mr. Lattimer and Miss Verdreaux to give it a try. And hopefully they could settle their issues in the dream world." Then quickly she called the chemist, "Mr. Lewis, from what Mr. Lattimer said, I believe we have to go through more than 2 levels. So if it's possible, make the chemical based on that idea." Then Rina's let out a breathe, "Mr. Lattimer, before you go to the dream world, I want all the details you have on the mark in written document. And I mean every single detail you know about the mark." Rina smiled warmly back at her crews, "Well, that's for now." And Rina let the others leave, and walked towards Sofie and whispered. "Tell me, Is Lana pregnant?"

Rina was hoping it was not the case, then again, if everything went with what Rina hoped for, she wouldn't be the person she was.
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Sat Mar 07, 2015 3:43 pm

Michael rolled his eyes at the conversation taking place in the middle of the circle. Adults were such children sometimes... At least the Extractor had the good sense to step in and break the two of them up before the conversation could go any further south.

"I hardly consider it hiding information when I was cut off before I was finished." John responded to Rina, completely ignoring the glare she shot him. "It was always my intention to tell the entire crew everything I had on the Mark. As a matter of fact, all the documents have already been forwarded to your email address." He finished, dropping into his seat with a smug grin.

To his credit, that grin didn't waver when Rina suggested he and Sofie try out the first layer of the dreamspace. The same couldn't be said for Michael though. He looked from John to Sofie and back again, deflating a little in his chair. "I don't have the time to teach them the layout today." Michael said, shooting a nervous glance in Rina's direction. "So, what you're effectively suggesting is that I babysit these two while I continue to work on the second layer. I'm not sure that's a reasonable use of my time."
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Sat Mar 07, 2015 5:03 pm

Sofie glared over at John, but managed to maintain her dignity. If he wasn't going to balk at the idea, then she wouldn't either.

But when Michael decided to shoot his mouth off, that was going a little far for her.

"We don't need you tagging along," she said irritatedly. "We can just use the care facility layout, since we might end up needing it. That works, yes?"

She shot a look, as though daring John to disagree, before getting up and heading over to the lawn chair setup with the PASIV. She'd already hooked herself up when Elliot had approached, holding the vial with his sample.

"Now, let me know if you experience any burning, itching, or stinging," he said before thrusting it beneath her nose. Looking alarmed, Sofie jerked her head back and stared at him with mingled worry and indignation.

"Why would I... experience..."

But before she could finish, she'd slumped unconscious in her seat

"Guess not then," Elliot said casually, checking his watch. "Four seconds... not bad."

He smiled over at John and waved the vial enticingly, as though it were a treat.

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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Sun Mar 08, 2015 10:28 am

Rina

"Good, I will check it out then." Said Rina as John sat down, "I believe that every professionals could handle one or two quick questions from their crew members. Even one may sound rude, with your expertise, Mr. Lattimer, I thought you could do better job of handling it." Then Rina looked at Sofie. "And Miss Verdreaux, I do not want to see any provoking behavior. Well, at least, not in front of me."

After the two settle down, David decided to ruin the mood again; child will always be child... what were you expecting Rina? Before Rina could tell David what to do, Sofie showed her irritation. After that, Rina came close to David. "Mr. David (Daveed), just like Miss Verdreaux said, you could show them just the layout of the care center. You do not babysit them, I believe they are professional enough to settle their private matter and put all their hearts on the job." Rina gently smiled at Michael, "Well after you are done with the layouts, show me around first."

Rina opened the email from John to see the information he had on the mark as others get on to their task.

(OOC: Payne I need the information that you came up with the mark)
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Mon Mar 09, 2015 5:31 pm

Michael shrugged at Rina's response and waved John and Sofie off. "Lattimer sent me the blueprints and photos. So, I assume he's familiarized himself with them already. I'll have the layout finished by tonight, and after I go over the other intel, I'll start working on the second in the morning."

Turning from the group, he made his way across the warehouse floor to where there was a large stack of papers laying on the floor. A laptop had been setup against the wall there, and his obscure visor from the previous meeting was perched on the keyboard. Without another word to anyone, Michael put the visor on and flipped it down, alternating between moving the gears of it with his fingers and quickly typing something on the keyboard.

"My reputation speaks for itself." John responded to Rina, not bothering to elaborate as he leaned back in his chair and plugged the PASIV machine into his arm. He looked warily in Elliot's direction before reaching over to punch the button. "Keep that stuff away from me. I don't like going under with extra sedatives. Makes the dream more confining..."

[OOC: John will host the dream of the Institute, so Sofie can populate it.]
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Tue Mar 10, 2015 10:09 am

Elliot looked like a kicked puppy at John's cold rejection of his concoction, but John only had to see it for a moment before his consciousness sank beneath the surface and rushed down.

Sofie was there, standing in the lobby of the assisted care facility. She seemed ill at ease there, her eyes moving over the various states of physical and mental decay housed within.

When she looked around and saw John, she said nothing, but fixed him with a cold look and waited for him to take the lead.

Yes, take the lead. Take control.

She really did sort of hate him. Not for the reasons anyone might expect, but because he always tried to wrest control away from her. She didn't like that. Not at all. Being in control was then only way she knew how to live. The only way she felt safe.

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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Tue Mar 10, 2015 3:21 pm

"You don't want to be here..." John spoke it the moment he glanced in Sofie's direction. Her knees were straight, leaving her legs rigid, and her arms were crossed over her stomach, like she was hugging herself for warmth. "Is that because of the location or the company?" He continued, taking a moment to slip out his pocket watch and check the time. "Maybe both?"

The watch disappeared back into his coat, and John looked back up at her, as if expecting a response. "Why the thorns this morning, Sofie? You should know better than to get personal and professional mixed up, and that was definitely not professional."
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Tue Mar 10, 2015 4:17 pm

Sofie ignored John's original question, quite tired of his usual methods of goading. Even if it wasn't, she wasn't about to discuss with him such private matters.

But perhaps he didn't expect an answer, as he got right to the point. Sofie was galled to admit it, but she knew he was right. There had been damage to team morale, to concentration, and to her professional image.

He hadn't exactly acted professionally himself, of course, but God forbid he admit that himself.

"Yes, you're right," she said, looking up and giving him a tight smile. "I know I'm better than to mix my personal feelings with business at hand. It won't happen again."

It was as close to an apology as he was going to get, and he'd be wise to take it as is.

"So," she said, abruptly changing tone to her usual, casual air as she turned toward the hallway leading further into the facility. "Are you going to give me the tour then? I suppose I should get into character."

She moved toward the mirror hanging on the wall, then glanced back at him.

"You've had some experience with forging, no? Perhaps it would be work better if you played Mercier as well. Would give me something to look at anyway."

Oh, so the little barb wasn't exactly professional, but it was harmless enough. Beneficial, even. An ego unchecked was a dangerous thing.

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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Tue Mar 10, 2015 5:06 pm

Too easy...

John frowned at Sofie's tight smile. There was the mask again too. She was more unnerved than he'd originally thought. It couldn't be because of him. She had shown more backbone during the team meeting. No, it was this place. Something about it got to her, made her feel vulnerable somehow...

He didn't call her out on it though. If she could operate in the dreamspace without any serious problems, it wasn't his place to pry. John had worked with damaged team members before. Hell, he was pretty damaged himself.

"Sure, I'll show you around." John said, looking over her shoulder at the mirror.

Her barb wasn't unnoticed, but John let it roll over him. "Business, Lana, focus on business." The face that now looked over Sofie's shoulder in the mirror was Mercier's, although John's body frame was still the same. He at least held himself the way Mercier would though. Mannerisms were easy, but his attention to physical detail wasn't perfect. It was what separated a good Forger from a great one, and John was well aware of that. This was why he always created his own personas instead of impersonating someone specific.
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Tue Mar 10, 2015 9:54 pm

"What do you mean, dear?"

The voice was entirely foreign to John, but the appearance was surely familiar. The deep red hair, the hazel eyes, the heart-shaped face, and the gently curved lips - all Lana Hollingsworth.

Sofie moved over to Gerard, taking his arm with a warm smile as she held close to him.

"Gerard, dear, I'm so glad you've finally brought me to meet your mother. I know how much this means to you," she said softly before placing a kiss on his cheek.

While John's attention to detail left something to be desired, Sofie's was flawless. The tilt of the head, the slightest crinkle of the eyes when she smiled, just the right amount of teeth.

"Once we get married, we should think about moving your mother closer to us. I want you to be able to see her whenever you want," she said sweetly, then dropped her voice into a more playful whisper. "And that way, we don't have to be apart~"

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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Wed Mar 11, 2015 11:19 am

Rina

Rina scrolled down the information that John had provided. It was useful; but, he also gave her information that she had to do her own digging. In other words, she had to find some of them by herself. "Well, the daily life patterns of the target are listed carefully and as he was pretty sure we are facing the target that went no training at all...." The target sounded like very ordinary man; had no secrets to hide. Then again, one might be doing all this to mislead...

Rina eyes suddenly dropped to her phone, a name came to her mind. 'Han' Then she shook her head violently. "Get over it, Rina." Then she commented in frustration. After the incident with that Asian male, she couldn't stop thinking about him. She almost made a phone call after that unprofessional group meeting.

Rina let her finger play a tune by tapping the desk, then she stopped the tapping and stood up. "Well, I guess I have to start with museum..."

She set out to find the details, by starting with the information that sounded promising...  Museum Exhibit Opening Ceremony.... an event without Lana.


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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Wed Mar 11, 2015 2:56 pm

"I meant we should keep moving, love." The voice was in the right vocal range, but it was slightly off. John did a decent job of inflecting the very slight Aussie accent though. "Hospitals aren't my favorite places." He shuddered ever so slightly and covered Lana's hand with his own.

"It was time for you to meet her, but don't be so hasty. Mother has always loved Australia, and I wouldn't move her against her wishes." He gave her a sad smile. "You know I love you, but I owe her more than that, even if she may not remember it sometimes."

Gerard led the way down the hall, keeping his pace slow enough that Lana could keep up easily. "When we get to her room, let me go in first and see if she's having a good day or a bad one. I don't want to bring you in if she's being grumpy and yelling for father again. Dealing with her when she's like that is... unpleasant." He finished, looking a little lost.

From his pocket, John fished out a photo and handed it to Sofie. Since she was projecting, she needed to know what Anna Mercier looked like, and he hadn't taken the time to show her the photo before the act began.
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Wed Mar 11, 2015 10:01 pm

Sofie looked guilty over the implications she might have given in her comments.

"Oh, dear, I'm so sorry," she said apologetically. "I didn't mean to force anything. Of course she can stay here, if that's what you think is best."

Sofie took the photo from John but did not look at it, keeping in character for the moment as they approached the room. It was only when the conversation came to a lull that she stole a discreet glance at the image to get the basic gist of the appearance before safely tucking it out of sight.

"Let me know when you're ready," Sofie said gently as they reached the room, giving John another gentle kiss on the cheek before moving aside and waiting patiently by the wall, smiling warmly at the old men and ladies tottering by.

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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Fri Mar 13, 2015 12:53 am

Gerard patted his hand a few times on top of Lana's, trying to bestow some comfort on her. "Don't worry over it too much. I know you meant well. It's just not a conversation I'm prepared to have yet. Give me time, love, give me time."

When they arrived at the door, he gave her hand a light squeeze before letting her go and opening the door. "I'll only be a minute..."

Gerard stepped through the door, closing it softly behind him and leaving Lana out in the hall. True to his word though, it opened again a moment later, and he reached out a hand to grasp hers, gently pulling her inside. "She's just settled down for her afternoon nap, it seems, but she's still kind of awake, and she knows who I am today. So, we can talk to her until she falls asleep."

Turning back towards the bed behind the curtain, Gerard gave the woman laying in it a bright smile as he tucked Lana against his side. "This is her, mother, the one I told you about."
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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Fri Mar 13, 2015 11:15 am

There was something quite liberating about acting. Sofie had always been drawn to it for its ability to escape the confines of life, to be able to step into the shoes of another person and truly become them.

Sofie would have been quite uncomfortable entering the little room, full of that indefinable smell of age and futility. But "Lana" positively radiated delight as she took "Gerard's" hand and entered the room, standing happily by his side.

"Oh, Mrs. Mercier, it's so nice to finally meet you," she said sweetly. Giving a glance at her fiance, as though to make sure it was all right, she broke away slowly from his side and sat at the edge of the bed, taking the elderly lady's hand into her own.

"You've raised such a fine young man," she said, gazing lovingly back at Gerard as she tucked a strand of red hair behind her ear. "You must be so proud."

[OOC: We don't have to take too long with the charade, if you don't want.]

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PostSubject: Re: Inception - Hollingsworth Job   Sat Mar 14, 2015 11:06 pm

The aging lady laying on the bed looked up at the both of them with a pair of sleepy eyes and gifted them with a slow smile. "The pleasure is mine, darling." She spoke with an almost regal tone, like a queen greeting one of her subjects. "I must say, it's been ages since Gerard has brought a girl home."

She took a moment to yawn, and Gerard gave Lana's waist a slight squeeze. "I wanted to make sure you approved, mother."

"How sweet, dearie." The woman said, smiling again. "I raised you to be your own man. Surely, you picked well for yourself."

Gerard smiled and turned his head to kiss Lana on the cheek. "Only the very best."
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