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 Reconnection, [Daisy Johnson aka Skye87]
Whisperer1
28 years old
It Guy/ "Leader" of the Brigade
3 posts
Human
Sticks
EST
Offline
@DAISY JOHNSON
Rick typed in his quick encryption cipher, securing his laptop from any outside interference. Entering the Brigade site was always risky, but this significantly lessened the risk. Someone would have to hack his laptop first in order to find out that he'd been anywhere near the site to begin with.

He started scrolling through the interface, checking the forum for any news, any developments, and any new members. Finding one, he found it most curious 'Skye87'. "...no, it couldn't be." He muttered, pulling up the profile and then selecting the option to private message them. It wasn't that out there, he did this for everyone who joined, made it a point to do so, in fact. Just like the eighty-five people who separated them on the site. They were all part of the same network, after all.

It paid to do that little bit of waving in the long run.


Hello there! Welcome to the Brigade. If you have any questions, feel free to direct them at me, I'll get back to you as soon as possible. Either way, thanks for joining up.

- Whisperer


He clicked send and went back to checking things on the site. It was likely just some big coincidence, after all.
Posted: Apr 7 2018, 01:50 PM
Quake
29 years old
Rogue S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent
80 posts
Inhuman
Jay
GMT -5
Online
Given the inherent secrecy baked into the overall philosophy which spawned the Dark 'Net, you'd think that news wouldn't spread so rapidly through such channels. Or at least that people wouldn't speak so openly about certain things, and in such plain language. And yet, while lurking through some of her old forum haunts, Daisy had discovered more than a few threads discussing a new group that'd appeared in the last year or so. The way some of the posters in those threads described them, the group was a pseudo-Baker Street Irregulars/Underground Railroad sort of deal. At least, allegedly. But she was never one to act purely on hearsay.

So, equal parts intrigued and paranoid, Daisy followed the breadcrumbs through the dark side of the World Wide Web, hoping to find out more about this "Brigade," as they apparently called themselves. Everything she found indicated that they were on the up and up, but the rodent part of her brain that assumed the entire world was out to get her couldn't help but insist that it was some kind of SRU sting. Nevertheless, upon finding the Brigade's website (Hidden behind a fake website for a real estate brokerage; give them this much, these guys were smart), she figured the only way to confirm or dismiss her suspicions was to sign up.

Secure behind a VPN, a firewall which she'd designed personally, as well as an encryption cipher, she put in her old standby username of "Skye" and a password, and went about setting up a profile.

It wasn't long before she got a ping in her private message inbox. Daisy did a doubletake at the username from which it was sent. "Whisperer." Could it...? Nah, it'd be too much of a coincidence...

Regardless, ever-so-curious, she began typing up a response, gently probing to get a feel for what this whole operation was like. And maybe figure out who this "Whisperer" was.


Hi!

So, a friend in my little circle of hacktivists pointed me in your guys' direction a couple days ago. Rising Tide, Anonymous, that kind of thing. I used to do something similar to what you guys seem to be doing, back around 2013, but I've been out of the game for a while. I figured if I wanted to get back in, it wouldn't hurt to offer my services. So... here I am.

- Skye


Hitting send, Daisy began obsessively pressing F5, watching her inbox like a hawk. If "Whisperer" was who she thought he was, he'd pick up on the mention of Rising Tide. And probably realize that 2013 had been the last time they'd ever been in touch.


@RICHARD JONES
Posted: Apr 7 2018, 09:28 PM
Whisperer1
28 years old
It Guy/ "Leader" of the Brigade
3 posts
Human
Sticks
EST
Offline
@DAISY JOHNSON

Rick filtered his way through a great deal of posts. Some of them asking for help, some still unanswered. So much to do...so much to do. He knew the people of the Brigade were capable, but he thought of so many other superhumans who were either going without help...or had already been taken in. Another few souls who were dragged away into the dark, never to be seen again.

Then the new message tone came up over his speakers. Checking it again, it was...Skye87. Clicking it, he read her message. The Rising Tide? Rick hadn't heard from anyone in that group for ages, ever since before Sokovia. There were some still out there, of course...but he'd had no contact.

This was getting to be too much to be a coincidence.


Well, we're happy to have anyone who's willing to help out onboard. Your skills with the Rising Tide will definitely be useful here. Since 2013? I wonder if I might know you...you went by the same name then, did you?


Rick looked the message over and was about to send it when he decided to risk something. Pulling up a separate window and a secure webcam chat channel, he pasted the link into the message and added...


Secure video chat, if you'd prefer to be a bit more vocal.


They had video chatted, once in a blue moon, in the past. His camera was, at the moment, turned off so his image was not projected. A typical precaution that he took just in case. Video chats were, after all, a very rare thing anymore. Most of his internet friends remained that - strictly internet.

Still...if this was Skye, then she'd pick up.

Then, he'd know.

And maybe, just maybe, he'd get a few answers.
Posted: Apr 7 2018, 09:50 PM
Quake
29 years old
Rogue S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent
80 posts
Inhuman
Jay
GMT -5
Online
She honestly had other things she could be doing right now. But then, wasn't that always the case? She still hadn't fully decrypted those financial ledgers she'd gotten from that gala. And she still had a message she somehow needed to get to L.A., bundled together with a fat stack of cash. Gift for a friend. And yet Daisy simply sat there, a bruised hand hovering over her keyboard, occasionally tapping the refresh hotkey.

After a few minutes or so, a new message appeared in her inbox, signaled by an electronic chirp from her laptop's speakers. Opening it, her dark eyes scanned the words on her screen, while she gnawed on her lower lip despite the fact that it was very much still swollen. Well, this "Whisperer" had certainly picked up the hints she'd dropped. The chances that the SRU would have the time or the patience to dig so deeply into her background just to catch her in an online sting were... pretty slim. So she was fairly convinced that this was the guy.

She was about to type a response when she noticed the link to the video chat lobby. God, they did used to do that, didn't they? Daisy glanced at her surroundings; her van was more of a mess than usual, with basically every panel adorned with papers, maps, photographs, and string. Lots and lots of string. The only light came in from the skylight above. Sighing, she pulled off the tape she kept over the laptop's webcam and clicked the link.

A black screen opened up, and the green light next to the camera blinked on, small frame in the corner of the screen showing that yes, the camera was live and she was being recorded. A popup came up, asking if she wanted the video chat program to access her microphone, and she clicked yes.

"Hey Rick. It's been a while." She said, flashing a small smile for the camera.


@RICHARD JONES
Posted: Apr 8 2018, 01:10 AM
Whisperer1
28 years old
It Guy/ "Leader" of the Brigade
3 posts
Human
Sticks
EST
Offline
@DAISY JOHNSON
Rick stared at the video image as it came into focus for several seconds. There was Skye, smiling brightly. He turned on his video camera and stared back for a bit, opening and closing his mouth several times. His room was in a similar state of disarray as Skye's van was (at least, it looked like it was the inside of a van?) so he wasn't going to hold it against her.

Not that he would, anyway.

"...so I'm assuming you fell off of the grid after robbing all those Hot Topic stores?" It was the first thing out of Rick's mouth. Rather uncharacteristically snarky of him. "Skye, I...it's good to see you, but like..." He didn't even know where to begin. "Where have you been? You just like...disappeared...what, almost five years ago now?" He asked. She'd completely disappeared almost five years ago now. But she was back, now. It was...surreal, to say the least.
Posted: Apr 8 2018, 08:43 AM
Quake
29 years old
Rogue S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent
80 posts
Inhuman
Jay
GMT -5
Online
Daisy averted her eyes for a moment, feeling Rick's own gaze on her through the screen. He hadn't seemed to change much, just looking at him. He was simply older. She was older, too. Not just in body, but in spirit. Would he be able to process just how much she had changed?

She laughed at the Hot Topic comment, before holding a middle finger up to the camera. "You're an ass." He still seemed to have a sense of humor, at least. It was good to see that much hadn't changed. Staring at her laptop screen, Daisy chewed on her thumbnail as Rick asked her where exactly she'd been in the past half decade or so.

"Yeah, it's been about five years." She said with a nod, figuring it'd be best to start with the easy-to-answer questions and work her way up. "I'm sorry I disappeared, Rick. I really am. And I wish I could explain where I've been, but I really dunno if you'd believe me." Still, she should at least try, shouldn't she? She owed him some kind of explanation, at least.

"Y'know S.H.I.E.L.D., right? Big international intelligence agency? Like, bigger than the CIA?" Daisy paused, as if to consider whether she was actually going to say this out loud. Even went so far as to glance around, despite being pretty damn isolated, all considered. "Well, they uh... they recruited me around the same time I disappeared. Don't believe me, poke around. My old personnel file should be somewhere in the data that got leaked during that disaster in D.C."


@RICHARD JONES
Posted: Apr 11 2018, 04:31 PM
Whisperer1
28 years old
It Guy/ "Leader" of the Brigade
3 posts
Human
Sticks
EST
Offline
@DAISY JOHNSON

Rick found himself laughing as Skye flipped him off. It didn't seem that she'd changed that much. "What can I say? You rubbed off on me." He joked again. It was almost as though there hadn't been a five year radio silence from her, the pair of them picking up again as though no time had passed at all.

Wouldn't believe her? "Given the last few years, believe me, I could believe quite a bit." He said. With the way the world was going, he'd be surprised if she told him something absolutely mundane like Witness Protection or something. But... "Whoa, dude. Seriously?" He blinked at her mentioning that she'd been recruited by, of all things, SHIELD. "No, no, I believe you." Rick had known Skye to lie on occasion, but never about anything like this. Not this big.

"Wait, so you joined up with them? Why?" Rick asked. He remembered the Rising Tide days, the group not looking to favorably on SHIELD. Something must have changed to shift her paradigm a bit...and that's when he got a bit paranoid. Sure, SHIELD wasn't what they were before, but they were still poking around things and could be a problem.

Especially if one of their agents knew him.

"...are...are you working for them now?" He asked, trying to sound casual. If she wasn't, then he could relax...if not, then he had some serious work to do in the few minutes before somebody would surely come knocking at his door.
Posted: Apr 11 2018, 05:33 PM
Quake
29 years old
Rogue S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent
80 posts
Inhuman
Jay
GMT -5
Online
Rick's laughter emanated from her laptop speakers, causing her to join in, though her own chuckles were far more subdued. Daisy had forgotten how much she'd missed this. Missed Rick. They'd always been the odd ones out in the Rising Tide; not nearly as paranoid and secretive as the others in the group's loosely defined ranks. And he'd always known how to make her laugh.

When he expressed surprise at her having been picked up by S.H.I.E.L.D., she nodded, actually smiling proudly at the fact. She would never regret her time serving under Coulson. He was a big part of the reason why she was the woman she was today, for better or worse. And she'd never trade it in. Daisy brushed her bangs back, wincing as her finger tips rubbed against the bruise above her eyebrow, while Rick questioned her motives for actually joining up. "Because they were the only people who had any idea who I was, Rick. What I was. They had files on me in their servers, dating back to '89." Her eyes fell to her lap, her dark brown locks draping before her face and forming a curtain. "They helped me find my birth parents."

She looked up at the screen, resting a hand on an aching shoulder. "I'm not with them anymore. I... I left because I screwed up. People got hurt and it was my fault." A shaky breath passed her lips, and her entire body shuddered. Even talking about her time under Hive's sway indirectly was almost too much, even now. "S.H.I.E.L.D.'s nothing like what we thought they were, Rick. They're good people, trying to keep the world safe. For humans and... 'gifted' people like me. They take them in, show them how to control their gifts. We only locked people away if they were active threats. And killing's an absolute last resort."

A pause, during which Daisy pulled her legs close to her chest and rested her chin on her knees. "My C.O. and my team helped me discover myself, Rick. Gave me something to believe in. A family, even. You can understand that, right?"


@RICHARD JONES
Posted: Apr 14 2018, 09:52 PM
Whisperer1
28 years old
It Guy/ "Leader" of the Brigade
3 posts
Human
Sticks
EST
Offline
@DAISY JOHNSON

Well, that was...different. Out of all the people that Rick would expect to hear a glowing recommendation about S.H.I.E.L.D. from, Skye had been the absolute last. Nevertheless, here they were now. Still, the way Skye spoke about them...she had to have been through a lot with them, to think of them like this. Maybe the Rising Tide had been wrong about S.H.I.E.L.D. after all. Even with what had happened with those HYDRA guys and that mess over the Potomac River.

But that wasn't the most shocking part, really. That came when Skye mentioned that they had known who her birth parents were. His eyes widened. "No way!" It had been something that had always bugged Skye, he knew. It had been one of the things they'd bonded over - lost parents. But Rick had known where his were, sad to say. Skye hadn't...but now, she did. "Where...I mean...Who...I mean...what happened? How did they do it?" He asked rather clumsily, about a billion different questions coming to mind in the fraction of a second after Skye had told him that.

Rick looked even more confused as Skye seemed...pained about talking about something that had happened. She'd hurt people? Skye? Rick didn't believe it for a second. She went on, talking more about S.H.I.E.L.D. and the things they had done. "Wait...gifted?" Rick raised a brow. He didn't remember Skye having any kind of superpowers. "What were you...I don't know...exposed to gamma radiation? Super Soldier Serum? Found out you were the daughter of aliens?" Given how the world was going, there was very little that Rick wouldn't believe.

At her words, Rick nodded slowly. "Yeah...yeah, I can, Skye." It reminded him of when he moved in with his Aunt, a few years after his parents died in that car wreck. "...oh, I didn't get to tell you. My Aunt passed." He said, it coming to him with that thought. Not to change the subject, but Skye had been the only person in the Rising Tide to know about Aunt Polly, much less her name.

Skye had often liked to hear the stories of Rick's former world traveling, adventure-prone aunt.
Posted: Apr 15 2018, 08:22 AM
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