1965-04-01 - Gold Coast Conspiracy
Summary: SHIELD investigates the site of an unsanctioned experiment in Northern Ghana and comes up with some troubling findings.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
julie billy fitz coulson jean-grey nick-fury 

April 1, 1965.

If this is to be an April Fools joke, it's likely the most elaborate one Agent Coulson has ever seen.

In the middle of the night, the Senior Agent had been contacted in a most unnatural manner by a certain red haired telepath named a Jean Grey. Whatever was 'discussed', it had prompted immediate action, waking both Agents Fitz and Kaplan in the middle of the night with marching orders. A SHIELD plane was ready for them. They were going to Africa.

The first leg of the trip from New York to Paris was the longest. There, the team was forced to board an old propellor engine craft, for the smaller SHIELD landing strip outside Accra in Ghana simply couldn't handle a proper jet aircraft. The flight took them over the great Sahara, where a helicopter awaited the last leg of their journey into the remote jungles of Northern Ghana.

Coulson and Grey have something of an understanding. He doesn't ask what she's involved in, despite the obvious signs that she isn't up to this all on her own. He's given her blessing to allow an envoy from her people to come masked, if need be, and the same permission was given to his team members, should any of them beg for it.

"Here's what we know," he instructs the agents accompanying him. "Rogue elements from multiple African nations built some kind of bunker, where they were conducting very dangerous tests on people. Trying to turn them into mutants, is what I was told." In addition to Fitz and Kaplan, they picked up a SHIELD interpreter in Accra, along with two additional field agents. Muscle, just in case. "Not much more than that. Whatever happened here, it wasn't sanctioned by the Republic of Ghana, so at least we won't be looking at any 'act of war' type of things, thank goodness." He reaches up to grasp hold of a handle as the helicopter begins to make its final approach. "Though, I'm told there's nuclear material in the bunker, so…" He nods his head toward a specific storage crate. "We brought protection."

Ahead, there is a clearing in the jungle. A military compound, roughly forty meters cubed, rests in the middle of the clearing. Some kind of battle was fought here, clearly, for there are two mangled tanks and a burnt out guard tower. Tire treads lead into the jungle, suggesting that ground transports had come and gone in great number.

"Any questions?" Phil asks of his team, voice raised over the chopping rotors of the Huey.

Billy is dressed in the standard black SHIELD uniform, complete with a sidearm that he is almost certainly able to hit the broadside of a barn these days. The only difference from the standard uniform is a black mask over most of his face below his eyes, and that there is decidedly no indicator of rank or name at all. "No, sir." he says in a crisp tone of voice, "Ready, sir."

Julie is presently standing on the bumper of one of the military transport trucks, some of which are scattered about, intact or in some disrepair: one's had a tank dropped on it, somehow. Diz pours from a jerrycan of water into the radiator. It seems the old one lying nearby got a bit shot up in the crossfire somehow, along with perhaps some hoses and a radiator fan.

She'd felt the rotors of the Huey coming from some way off. "Helo coming in," the New York gal had said, some while ago, for some reason she's the designated ambassador this time, adding some obscuring yellow eyeshields with black edging to make up the most of her disguise. On goes a radiator cap, and she hops on down, adding a ballcap with that X-logo on it for some sun protection. Possibly not a look she's really thought through.

Fitz was shockingly not face down on his desk in the lab and had gone home to his apartment which was all of only around the corner really. It helped not needing to take the tube to work. He'd dropped into the lab on his way to the launch pad leaving a note that only read:

I'm sorry. I'll explain when I get back.

Having dragged his portable field rig with him he set the case down and listened. "Sir, with all respect," began the Scotsman, "Mutant or altered human? I was under the impression that there was a specific genetic marker indicating this. Only to ask with-" He looked from Coulson to Julie and back tilting his head to the side, "In deference to any present, are they reconstructing their DNA, or we know if they're just altering them in general using 'mutant' as a blanket term for things not in their insitu position?" Sure, let the scientist ask questions. He followed that up with, "It affects what gear we bring."

As the SHIELD chopper gets closer, more of the scene becomes visible to those within. It would seem the Republic of Ghana has found some time to send their own responders to the scene. There are two military transports, a nondescript bus, and a handful of soldiers standing guard around the compound.

Coulson turns toward Fitz at the question, brow lifted. He's dressed similarly to Kaplan, wearing the standard black SHIELD uniform, complete with a double shoulder harness to carry his sidearm, a knife, and a field kit. "Mutant," he clarifies. "That's what I was told, anyway, and the source is well versed in these things, so, I would assume were using the right vernacular here." He grins. "That's why I brought you along, Fitz. Shame we couldn't drag Simmons along, but there was just no way to get her here. The locals are doing us a favor and haven't tampered with the site beyond what's already happened, but that won't last."

The helicopter finally sets down, upon which Coulson pops a pair of sunglasses onto his face. The two tactical agents climb out first, followed by Coulson and the interpreter. He waits for the others to depart before moving out, taking a few moments to gauge the surroundings. He keeps his thoughts to himself, until of course he sees the lightly masked woman wearing an X on her ball cap. "X marks the spot," he remarks in an offhand way, before motioning toward Julie and turning in her direction.

Following along, Billy tries to feign the air of Confident Field Agent, though its not entirely effective, but everyone has to have their first field mission sometime. The nerves are mostly clamped down as he climbs out of the helicopter and comes to settle in behind the tactical agents.

Standing in the copter is one Nick Fury. His coat flaps in the back draft of the blades atop the helicopter with his pistol in plain sight, the smoke from his cigar billowing out the side. He speaks now, "Good oppurtunity to test that tech we spoke about, Fitz." Fury squints that lone eye, hoping the gear has been completed. When the others have departed Nick jumps down, a cloud of dust swirling up to meet what the helicopter is pulling up. Standing tall afterwards he approaches the others as he throws his stogey in the dirt. "Okay. Plan. Spill it." His tone is not authorative but demanding in its own sort of way. "Agent Coulson. This is your baby. What can you tell me?"

Julie gives a broad wave, with a glance back to, presumably, where others of her team might be, eyeing the SHIELD agents and then sparing a glance for the Huey, before smiling to Coulson, "Well, welcome to the spot," she says, "Whatever they call it, again. …Good to see some of Uncle Sam's boys after all this. I don't exactly sling the lingo around here." She does take her time about approaching, though.

There was no leaving Africa any time soon. There were a few X-Men here still lingering by the wayside and they were the ticket home. Plus, contacts. Hands shaken. Things moved, pushed and pulled and often times Jean wishes the X-Folk weren't in the epicenter. But they were. And they were here.

Jean hovers above the military transport, landing once everyone touches home, the questions asked and answered while Jean herself keeps her hood over her head to slightly crowd her features. There was a thought, that the woman in black should at least mentally check those around her to make sure that they don't look /too/ close. X-Men aren't public yet.

But, trust is as trust does. She falls in line behind Billy, her hands behind her back as she issues a smile. "Hello." She says to him, lifting a shoulder in greeting. "Everything will be alright, neh?" Julie's words, get a grin. As well as Fury's. Heck. This is all so uniform its pretty impressive.

Fitz wasn't a biologist by any stretch and Simmons would have been ideal. Still he nodded in slow affirmation biting the inside of his cheek thoughtfully getting a clinical look around. Opening his big big box of everything(tm) he pulled out the harness and armed himself: smaller side arms, the NNG on hip and then he was armed with his BF Reader (The Beepy-Findy) and communications equipment, and battery. Still he kept his pistols in reach for quick draw and then dug through his gear looking up, "Billy? Here." He tossed a small canteen looking thing to him. "Doooon't open that. Use it in case of emergency." Gear out he snapped the case shut with thumb locks and looked to the others involved and sighed. He paused and looked vaguely uncomfortable "Right, Sir. That. Well, leeeet's go see what they're up to while we can."

"I'm about in the dark as you," Phil tells Nick. He then nods his head toward Julie and approaches.

"Not quite Uncle Sam," Coulson answers to Julie, before casting a look toward Jean and offering a slow nod of presumed recognition. He stops not far from Julie, perceiving that this may not be a 'let's shake hands and make friends' type of event, and instead greets her with a professional and well placed upnod. "Phil Coulson, Senior Agent, SHIELD. We're international, so, jurisdiction is sort of a given. These men are with me," he says, motioning toward the others. He's not about to give names, that's up to each individual. After all, Phil's the cordial one.

"So, why don't you tell me what happened here, what we're looking at?" He nods his head toward the Ghanaian soldiers. "Those men official, I assume?"

With his face being masked, Billy turns to look at Jean when she greets him and though the smile can't be seen, it does touch his eyes, "Keep behind us and you'll be fine, ma'am." He lifts a hand when the canteen is tossed by Fitz, and it stops immediately in mid-air and flows over to his hand. Billy has never been good at catch, so he cheated. "What's it -do-, Fitz?" he asks of the tech. His hands go behind his back to stand ready. He doesn't give his name, though Fitz did spoil half of it.

Julie smiles a wee bit, "Well, we're part of international, too, but I get it." She indicates the Ghanain soldiers, "Official so far as I can tell, anyhow." She adds, "Ah, call me Dizzy for now, …so, the story is, someone in our group came back from a visit to the old country, here, and he ends up finding out that some group's been planning some kind of revolt, or so he thought, and that involved a lot of people from out here in the sticks disappearing. He finds out, they're being abducted and experimented on. Some real bad stuff that kills most of em. He gets captured, escapes, comes back home with his brain a bit scrambled, …torture and the like, so, once that gets sorted out, we come here on a rescue mission." She casts an arm around the place. "So, we did some rescuing. Real big cabuntu, even." She's learned an Iwa word, apparently, but this could be a running joke after a day or two. She pauses and takes a deep breath. Then points to the entrance to the bunker. "Real bad scene down there, but it could have been worse. One of their, mutated people got away, apparently with one of the scientists, but we got a guy who could explain more of that end of things. Got some survivors to get back where they came from, after this, too." THe girl glances over to Jean.

The recognition was caught and a nod was given towards Phil. There was no decision to mask her features though she does hang back with the rest of the crew or plebs. Her arms remained in their spot, a brief nod gone towards Billy as she suddenly wisens up and gets serious. "Okay, I'll stay in the back." Jean says, but she.. stands right next to Billy. "Billy is it?" Uh huh. "I'm with Diz. That lady up there who's giving the run down. She's in charge for right now." Which is true. For right now.

Dizzy's glance does get a nod, Jean's hand lifting with a wave to brush away the last comment in hopes no one focuses upon it. Wakanda is secret, after all. "They're home, and they're fine as could be given their trauma." Jean glances at them all, her face screwed up a bit as she pulls back her hood. "Sorry. Carry on."

Fury soaks in all the conversation, never giving away name or rank. The eyepatch would tell any informed enough. "So we are here ta' clean up the mess?" He says with a grunt. But its not abrasive, just inquiring. He then looks to Jean and Julie in turn. No words though, just a knowing glance. Looking to Phil he says. "We need to find that mutant. Ready for a test run?" He pulls a cigar from his coat then and spins it in his mouth while lighting. After its fully cherried and smoking he removes it and adds, "I'll take one team to hunt you take another to asses the situation. Take Fitz." Nick might feel in charge too. He doesn't challenge Jean though, merley lines up shield agents for what he deems appropriate. Turning to a few lesser agents he says, "Go question this /guy/." He turns to Julie, "Where do we find him?"

Fitz furrowed his brow listening to this looking to Dizzy at her rundown. "Gah that sounds terrible." Directives or no, he didn't lack compassion on that front. Still the tech was anchored to the tech. " He looked to Fury and said, "As a note, if there's a mutant in our recon team the scanner won't work. We can still function with what is left over and I should be able to pick up signal regardless." He looked to Billy and said only, "You need to cover an exit, shake, uncap it and throw it as far as you can behind you at whatever you don't want chasing you." To that extent he didn't offer any more information than that. but the tone might as well be telling Billy how to use a convection over to thaw a turkey. Agt. Fitz fell in formation and nodded to Phil, "I think we're ready here. Ladies, we have a walkie talkie for each of you. Channel 117."

A careful listen is given to Dizzy's recount of what happened here. "There's an underground area?" he asks for clarification, picking up on her description of something ugly happening 'down there'. Ever the cordial one, he's like the politically correct edge to Nick Fury's serrated steel. "Well, I'm glad you and your people were here to keep those people safe. Unsanctioned experiments…" He shakes his head. "On unwilling people. Seems pretty damn low."

Coulson then turns to Fury, and doesn't offer any sort of argument there. He nods his head to Billy, then gestures toward Nick. "With him," he instructs, then gestures for the translator. "You too, some of those people probably don't speak English." He then walks over and claps Fitz on the shoulder. "Let's go downstairs, have a look at this equipment," he says, before making for the bunker's entryway.

Behind his mask, Billy winces at Jean's question of his name, so he mutters to her, "It's Agent William, ma'am." He nods to Julie when Jean mentions her, and accepts the lady might be nominally in charge for the moment, but his attention is focused primarily on the Senior Agents and their instructions. But the grimness of what Julie describes causes him to tense him, and a light spark of electricity spreads over a palm that tightens into a fist. "I'm not a mutant." he notes (despite his powers) to Coulson and Fury, in case that fact might determine which team he ends up on, vis-a-vis the scanner. But he moves in to fall in with Fury's troops, "Ready, sir."

Julie seems a bit surprised, there, then seems to catch up, shifting gears a bit. In charge, right. Jean gets a nod, and adds, "Good," about the everyone's home part. She props a hand on a hip, cause that's in charge, sort of. There's a tool/utility belt there, but nothing that looks like a gun or any such thing.

She answers Nick's question as she takes the walkie Fitz offers with a bit of a wink, possibly suspecting they may have similar roles, but answers Agent Fury, with a point to the bunker entry. "Down there waiting, and, ah, some of the bad guys we captured are locked up." She adds, "Two African ladies, one last seen in a funny radiation suit. The bad mutant, well, she does this kinda thing where she can sink right through the dirt and rock, and take people with her, too. Don't let her grab anyone if you see her. Could be miles away or right under our feet for all I could tell." She adds an apologetic shrug, in case that one's hard to believe.

Nick looks displeased and to Fitz says. "Whats the proximity?" He shakes his head and a large cloud of smoke escapes his mouth. "I'll take the gear then." He looks over remaining folks (the ones he will take) and seems satisfied there are no mutants. Until Billy's comment. But he says nothing. "We will see." The words are soft and unimposing. Nick knows more than most. What he may think? OR know? Hard to tell. "You've only the one?" Weather the answer is yes or no he holds out his hand, expecting the tech handed over. "I need a rundown." Fury then quiets and takes things into account.

Fury nods to Julie . "We will keep you informed."

What a good time to test out Julie's commando nature! Even though her eyes are on the prize, she does lean in to hear Billy's true title, and gives him a nod. "Agent William. Sorry.." She mumbles quietly, but once Fury starts to speak, the man has a natural commanding presence that makes everyone listen. She was even mindful of Fitz's tracking device. Though, all of that makes it unclear of where she's supposed to go. Not their fault! She was too busy bugging Billy. Mostly due to his nerves.

Empathy sucks.

Her hair is soon gathered as she begins to pull it up to tear into a ponytail, her eyes darting left and right as the team divides itself into those two groups. Walkie-Talkie soon taken and examined, eyes near crossed and not. "Uh.." She states, taking one step towards Phil's crew and then towards Nick's crew.. and uh..

"Wellll… I think I'll sit this out. Cause.. you know. Things and stuff. I mean, if you guys need any water or like more ammo or what have you I can do a quick run over to you all. And maybe some.. lunch? We have these awesome banana leaf sliders.. well they say its sliders but it's more like gulpers.. uh.. yep.."

Annnd off wandering she goes..

Fitz took a deep breath and did not… like… tracking target demographics and expressed, "The Beepy-FIndy Reader, or BF Reader can track heat signatures and algorithms and the perimeters can be tuned to set within a normal radius. Sme with thermal filters. So if say someone's combustible, or drops in temperature or is manipulating the particle frequency around them it'll resonate a bit as a flash and… well… beep when it finds something and show you roughly what you have. Maybe in a ten meter arc from the censor. Hard to get it much more accurate than that." He looked to the two of them and shook his head, "From there I mean provided variance in the terrain we should be able to see differences in environment and terrain as they form. From there we can deduce if something is active or charging up."

Inside the bunker, there are six guerrilla soldiers, shackled and kept away from anything dangerous. The bunker appears to be one large storage room, with an officer's desk in the corner. Quite makeshift, most of the cargo crates here don't seem out of the ordinary, save one that has a RADIATION WARNING label painted in bright red. Kept separate from the guerrilla soldiers is a lone scientist, his hair disheveled and his expression forlorn. He isn't shackled, but that's because he's been playing nicely. On the other side of the room is a large elevator door, the doors open, lift car waiting inside.

Coulson motions for Nick, Billy and the translator to go over to the scientist. He takes Fitz with him, then looks toward Dizzy as he approaches the elevator doors. "This thing still operational, I guess?" he asks. "The experiments were taking place down below?"

As Billy follows Nick's lead to the scientist, he looks around and keeps one hand up and ready, fingers splayed as his will reaches out and touches the fabric of reality. He's not _doing_ anything at the moment, but making ready. He's not sure what to make of the scientist, he looks over to Coulson, "Sir, if I may?" He doesn't wait, "Going down an elevator where people might be waiting on the ground could get fun with the bullets. I can open a wormhole down to a side wall, surprise?"

Julie rather peers at Fitz's device, perhaps unsure how that's supposed to help. "Or if, I dunno, someone starts an engine?" she asks, trying to put together what Fitz means by his explanation. To Jean, she says, "Ah, that'd be great, I guess, maybe these guys is thirsty," She taps the side of her head a bit as she walks along to catch up with the group. She nods about the lift down, that's in fact operational, despite that they'll find the downstairs doors are somewhat blown off, somehow. She nods. "Yeah, there's a containment room, they'd use this red gas, then a big dose of radiation, is the thing. Some of the gear got pretty damaged in the scuffle, nearly blew sky-high, I guess. The doctor here knows about that stuff." She gives a smile to the professor, as a somewhat familiar face, or rather, mask.

"These fellas are from SHIELD, Doc, they've come to help sort all this stuff out." She does glance over to Billy about that, and adds, "Or, the elevator works. "

"Hands down." Nick says to Billy without looking back. "Stand….down." It's formed as a request, polite. The fact that his actions are not necessairy but on retainer. A look with the one eye given back to cull him. Then he blinks. He turns to Phil. "Your in charge. You have command." Then he leans in and whispers but its audible for all. "You have natural lead. I'm givin' you point. TO A point." The las word whispered. "You know what to do." Fury looks to his charges and places hands behind his back. "Report." He'w lookiung at

Jean catches Julie's nod and her words. The double meaning behind it was tantamount to what she really came here to do. To watch. To listen and learn about all parties invited, including her own, Julie. Coulson already knew the game, she didn't want to be involved unless necessary. But she'd be there to show support, and be the last line of defense if need be. But.. would she be needed?

"That kids got sparks.." Jean mutters to herself, "He says he's not a mutant but he sparks.." Which, she wasn't complaining. That was pretty incredible. In fact, the entire current roster of SHIELD was pretty neat, which makes her staying up top makes much more sense. Yet, once they were out of sight, Jean presses two fingers to her temple, allowing her eyes to close to get the beat on Julie's mind.. and delving in and expanding with a light nudge if she could. It would be like sneaking a peek over their shoulders if they let her.

The cigar smokes and Fury grins with an assuming glare. He turns to Coulson. "Your in charge." Nick is out of his element but more importantly he's received a message and seems in a hurry. He stalks back to the helicopter with no words. A last look to jean, a thought -stay away-. She would surely sense and..understand? Nick offers last looks to the field agents. Then, A cigar is shoved into the neck. The LIFE> MODEL> DECOY folds.

Fitz was singular in mind to find and understand the science and nature of this involved. "Yeah if Sparkles here can get us downstairs we'll get a fair reading, though there's the signs that are picking up rad-warnings. We pull a Geiger counter out on this pace or is that a ruse that we know of?" He took the reader back from Fury as his composite self stalked back and Fitz sighed "Ya know… all that work put into those and he just wrecks em." Now Fitz was glowering faintly. "No appreciation for an artist's work. Ever. Sir, let's move in. I'll let you know if the readings kick up." And scanning for electronic signatures, and radiation, and heat signatures and all in between like Predator in a box. It was a fun day.

Coulson looks from Billy to Dizzy, then over to Fury. "Yeah, but if there's someone waiting below ready to drag one of us into Dante's inferno, I'd appreciate the heads up." He levels a slow nod toward Nick as he departs, before holding up a hand to Billy, stopping him. The scientist has his attention now, for he's getting to his feet and looking all sorts of nervous.

"Thank you, Dizzy," he tells the woman, before turning to the SHIELD agents. Fury is particularly intimidating, but when he departs, the scientist seems more at ease. "It will not be a ruse," the scientist says to Fitz. He's African, but he does speak English particularly well. "Doctor Kwunteng. I and my partner, Doctor Uso, we…" he sighs, and motions. "We are responsible for this, but we were coerced. They took our families, and we don't know where they are." He seems riveted to Fitz, given that he's the one spouting technobabble. "We depleted our supply of uranium, so I assure you, the facility is safe. I'll tell you everything. I just want my children back."

Coulson looks from the scientist to Fitz, then finally gives Billy the nod of approval. He only now removes the sunglasses and sidebars to Billy, "Looks like you're with us, now."

"It's damaged— its leaking electricity, though I can't tell exactly how damaged— and a choke point." Billy points out to Julie, before he blinks from behind his mask at Nick Fury's order, a brow arching. But with him going off, he looks over to Coulson as the audible is called and he changes teams, "Yes, sir." Fortunate, as Billy isn't exactly skilled at interrogation. And with that Billy heads to the elevator, and lays his hand upon it, "Find me a backdoor." he says in a clear, even voice, "Find me a backdoor. Findmeabackdoorfindmeabackdoor." Nothing appears to happen, nothing at all. But Billy steps back away from the elevator and turns to look at the others, "When we open the doors it will lead directly to an out of the way corner downstairs, away from where they'd be expecting us to emerge."

The cigar fizzles and the the lmd melts. It is an odd sight. As the flesh compounded component dissapears in front of everyones eyes the fake Fury says with an impending tone, "Fitz, Do not withold. Your evaluation is being recordered.! The lfmd then collapses and loses its human looking form, shields tech showing its true form as low level agents scoff and mutter.

Julie raises an eyebrow as the strange fellow wanders off. Does turn on the walkie-talkie, though, and set to channel. Her mind, well, she's been expecting some over-the-shoulder while 'in charge' and all, and not too hard to find, since she doesn't seem to think much more reservedly than she usually talks, that and the way she senses everything spinning and such, in fact possibly feeling a bit springy because of the angular momentum of the equatorial latitude. She pulls a dosimeter button out of her pocket, which is there for entirely different reasons than this African trip, but this one's got an X logo on it, cause Hank. She says to Fitz, "Brought this one from home, it agrees with the gear here. And the Doc's been on the level with us so far. "

To Coulson she adds, "The sonsabees sure gave him plenty of reason to, there. You figure the UN can help out there if we don't find much locally?" She then says to Billy, apologetically, "Well, I mighta burned out a couple brushes, but she works. The bad guys are locked up off a side corridor where they was keeping their subjects, can't miss it. Anyway, this opens up on the control room, shouldn't be anyone there. Don'worrybout it, she comforts, very Italianly. I won't let no one fall or get stuck."

~Not too much information Julie. This is our first op together, but you're doing wonderfully.~ Jean mentally transmit to the woman. Still, she watches, even disconnecting for a moment to watch as Nick Fury does.. the thing with the neck and.. the thing.

Yes, the warning was caught. This causes her eyes to flare red and her brows to furrow, much to her -own- dismay.

'What a maniac.' The woman says.
"Eh. He's not our problem. Yet. Though, if he's with SHIELD, he will be a formidible ally." Jean says to herself. And.. back to the mission at hand.

~Julie, update dossier when we get home. Schedule a meeting with SHIELD. This time on their turf.~ Then, more pondering. ~And we need more math books.~

Still, as the crew could possibly soon become out of range, Jean slowly begins to approach the facility, reaching the doors and hopefully staying out of sight from the rest, her hand lifting towards the rest of the militants who were left behind to warn them away from their approach. Cautious as ever.

"Sir." She motions to one of the militants. "Be prepared. Start your trucks and move towards the predetermined perimeter. If you see fire, drive away and don't look back. Mark. Black site, Omega one. No one in and out there-after, understand?" She pauses, then smiles. "Just a precaution! Sandwiches are in the back of your truck!"

LOG NOTE: Retcon LMD portion, SHIELD does not yet have access to LMD.

Fitz took a deep breath at the directive. "Right. No pressure at all." He murmured to himself. Looking back to the other scientist he nodded for him to come with since he'd be in custody with them asking questions about uranium and if the particle decay was part of breaking the biological compound to change it and actually forgetting for a moment it was an op and not a wonderful day discussing the many possibilities of particle physics. Sorry folks, the Dr. is in. The syllables got longer and the babble would persist in the direction of asking how was the radiation employed, does he still have his notes and the process, and finally, "Look sometimes science for the sake of science can get… off track. Please help us understand what happened so we can get these people help and potentially undo the process done to them or help restore some quality of life for them, and we will help you get your family safe." He looked back to Dizzy and Coulson with a look giving the promise weight. He'd fight for that one.

The elevator doors open, revealing an odd sight on the other end. Rather than an elevator car, there is a large underground waiting area; a place where the prisoners were kept before they were brought to the radiation chamber. The scientist murmurs something under his breath in his native tongue, a sense of wonder clear there despite the words not being in English.

Coulson takes point, his sidearm drawn. He moves into the room beyond and below, eyes keen as they look around the large room, which appears to be empty. Once he has cleared it, he motions with his head for the others to come through.

"To be honest," Doctor Kwunteng tells Fitz, "it was a bit crude, but effective. Doctor Uso invented some kind of compound that, when subjected to lethal doses of radiation, triggered a mutation." He chews on his lip. "We were doing it for science. We never meant it to be used on innocent people, only… only volunteers. Until they found out. Honestly it was a stab in the dark. There's so little that is known about mutants, but based on what we do know about genetics, there's always a stress level event that triggers an evolutionary moment. Like the duck penis." He pauses. "Not… the best example, no, but, the opposable thumb." As they move into the large room, he slows. "This is where they kept the people they kidnapped. The… the people they forced us to experiment on."

Coulson remains dispassionate about the affair, instead removing a flashlight and holding it next to his pistol. There's only one way out of this room, and he shines his flashlight toward it. "Control Room?"

"Yes," Doctor Kwunteng confirms.

"Already handled." Billy shrugs in response to Julie, falling back to where Fitz and Coulson are. He rolls his shoulders, the nerves finally fading out, looking to Coulson and then to the scientist as he describes what the experiment was doing. His eyes narrow and he clenches a hand again, and he moves to follow. His hand is up and at the ready. Just in case.

Julie is a bit confuse by the seeming change of layout. Takes out an angle-headed flashlight and peeks out the still-open service hatch of the elevator to see if perhaps they're in a different shaft somehow, and tsks. Clicks her tongue a bit and elbowbudges Billy a bit, bemusedly. Meanwhile, she's thinking toward Jean, «I know this place for old textbooks that's pretty good, wait a minute, update whose dossier?» As Doctor Kwunteng explains his story again, there's also apparently something she doesn't want to know about duck anatomy involved.

She does ask aloud, though, "So, how'd they mess with people's heads like that, then? Pretty sure giving people amazing powers right after pissing them awff usually ain't the smartest plan in the world."

Once the militants start their car and back away from the facility, Jean enters in, quite possibly at a point where she's standing directly above the position of where the crew is below. Still, it was a good vantage, good enough for her to watch the goings on.. and if anyone were to actually look at her head on, they would see her eyes twitch back and forth near rapidly to keep up and cataloug all of the information that she was taking in. It was almost a bit much.

~Mine.~ Jean replies to Julie.

For Jean to feel those bundle of nerves from the crew, they seem to be solid right now. Someone found their purpose! But, Jean's nose wrinkles just a little as she shakes her head, and answers Julie.

~If someone were to promise your family money, food, water, or whatever it is that you don't have for your family to make it and live to their old ages, wouldn't you subject yourself to this? Think about it. They could have approached a mother, or a sister, father or a brother of a sick family member promising them the cure. Some people come willingly, especially if they were deceived for the right things.~

Her arms drape around herself as she looks up towards the ceiling, her thoughts soon cutting towards Billy.

~Agent Williams. Be careful.~ Tee-hee.

Fitz listened taking the readings in as they went, "Elevated radiation levels detected. Still manageable but we won't want to linger down here for too long." He paused and his nose wrinkled as he pinched the bridge, "Okay you're talking about subjecting people to lethal doses of radiation… a dose that is going to kill your test subject. Not only is that cruel but it's also terribly inefficient." Practicality: the scientists's friend. "horrific implications aside it feels like bad math to me." Because sometimes one had to look past the emotional component but even then he was allergic to slapdash science.

NOW he saw why Coulson brought him. "Alright. Let's… what… did you do to the ground?" He paused and tapped the meter again and looked around. "I'm getting a high amount of refractive readings." He looked back to Billy and warned, "Ready on an evac for us if we need it, yeah?"

"I do not know," Doctor Kwunteng admits to Julie. "All we did was… make them." He then diverts to Fitz, becoming defensive. "It wasn't supposed to be bad math. It was supposed to be a longer process, with many more safety precautions, but… look, someone shows you a picture of a man in a mask with a gun to your daughter's head, you start turning dials faster."

Guilt plus trauma makes for a real headcase.

Coulson leads them into the Control Room, where he stops a few paces and looks around, eyes wide. "Holy shit…"

The room itself is in shambles. The walls, floor and ceiling were once rock, but they were transformed into mirrored surfaces, many of them smashed. The elevator doors have in fact been blown open, the elevator inside of course missing because it's still upstairs. There's a massive hole in the ground nearby the elevator which is likely to send Fitz's Beepy Friend into a tizzy, for the ground suffered molecular transformation followed by severe blunt force trauma, for lack of a better word.

Still, the center point of the control room is an array of damaged meters, levers and dials, where the radiation chamber is controlled from. The chamber itself is visible through a thick glass window, which has strips of lead woven into it into a lattice form. The chamber beyond is lined with lead, a thick lead door hanging off its hinges to separate the chamber from the control room and likely explaining why some of the radiation was able to leak into this place. From outside the chamber, it's hard to tell what went on in there, meaning someone is probably gonna have to suit up and go inside.

"What happened here?" Coulson asks, turning toward Dizzy.

|ROLL| Fitz +rolls 1d20 for: 20

At his elbownudging, Billy looks questioningly at Julie, "Hmm?" Blinking at the voice in his head, he nods to… no one, and twists a finger in his ear for a moment. But with other hand he lifts it up and holds it before him in a 'stop' like gesture as he heads into the room, making ready. "If we need to evac, get in as close to me as possible. I can — just barely — throw up a shield and evac us at the same time, though the shield won't hold against that much." The devastation brings him up short briefly, so he lifts a hand up to cover his eyes and murmur, "The spectrum expands, the spectrum expands, the spectrumexpandsthespectrumexpands." As his hands fall away, his eyes have changed so that the irises fill the whole of the whites and his pupils are huge at that.

Julie hrms, there, as the Fitz-meter's findings are announced, and says, especially if he's pointing at the hole blast-dug in the ground, perhaps partially-filled in to clear some rubble. Answering Fitz and Coulson, Dizzy points and says, "If that's whatyou're reading, that's probably from us the other night. Our missing baddie dragged one of our team down there, so we had to get him out." She does take from her pocket something… it proves to be a yo-yo. But it's a nice one, lathe-machined metal of some kind. She yo-yos a bit just in case it's actually the scary earth-phasing lady coming back. A yo-yo's pretty benign-looking, even so, compared to, say, blasting damage and massive door that's apparently been torn open, then wrenched back by some massive force. One might even say a colossus. Yo-yo goes down, yo-yo comes up.

«Putting yourself down to teach more math, you mean, Jean, or something else? I think they're just checking out the mess right now. Could be something here.» And, well, radiation's been getting out. She eyes some of the meters in the room, with a moment's wariness. She looks to Billy, but says, "If you gotta shield hard, then you and everyone follow me to the elevator, I'll get us clear quick."

Fitz swallowed and the readings were, entirely, going haywire. "Ummm You happen t'have that canteen I gave you in case this all goes t'rubbish? Because I think it's all going pear shaped. THere's a massive electro-magnetic and radiation reading coming from… all over but whatever happened either the hole or the hamber here are having a breech. Doctor, what lies below the test chamber." He turned and instead of attack the man's science he pulled the mask down to have a face, a real human face. "Losing family is something no one wants t'go through, an' I know you are tryin to save your little girl. We're goin' t'get her back. You're doin good. I need you t'stay calm and keep walking us through what's happening here." He turned the BF Reader's dials in very slight shifts pointing Julie and Coulson and Billy there. There by the elevator. "Gettin astronger reading here I think."

The Doctor stays very close to Fitz, his eyes looking around with worry. He murmurs something in his native language, before being brought back to reality. "Nothing," he answers. "Uranium feeds were in the walls, with regulators there, and there." He points toward grills in the walls of the radiation chamber beyond, pointing essentially through the glass window that separates the chamber from the control room where the gathered are standing, huddled close to Billy. He shakes his head and says, "The only thing you should be registering is residual radiation from the irradiation chamber. Unless…"

The Doctor looks to Dizzy next, frowning. "Unless he's actually picking up the scientific end of the mutants that were fighting your people." No, Doctor Kwunteng doesn't give a damn about SHIELD or X-Men secrets, he just wants his family back. He turns back to Fitz and Billy, looking between them both. "I lost count of how many we made, but, there were seven of them here. Seven they kept behind to protect the project. One of them burned, the others… I wasn't sure what they could do, they were kept from us as soon as they were mutated. But there was the woman, the woman with the black eyes." He glances to Coulson and Dizzy, before looking back to Billy and Fitz. "I saw her disappear into the rock, and come back, later, from the other side of the room. It was like… like she could become one with stone."

Unfortunately, the scientist had his attention on the controls during the battle.

Coulson frowns, his professionalism breaking. "So there were mutants here, and now they're gone." He glances to Dizzy, but opts not to give her a hard time about this. He will, of course, be having words with Jean Grey before he gets back on that SHIELD chopper. To Fitz, he nods. "Go check it out." Then he turns to Billy, noting the change in the agent's pupils. "Anything?"

Billy begins walking slowly around the room, "Here, a man was burning." He moves over a bit away, "Here, channelling electricity. There." He points, "Wind, and there, someone transformed the rock into mirrors. There was serious power and science going on here. The hole near the elevator? What did that dug into the earth, too. But— there's another form of kinetic energy that ripped into that hole, which I don't understand. In the chamber? Where they irradiated people? It almost went in meltdown." He glares with his huge eyes at the Doctor, "I can see the residue of their energies. They're not here anymore that I can detect."

Julie nods, as she does let people head back toward the elevator, if something's going wrong enough that people want to get out. She does indicate the doctor, at his mention of the rock-phasing lady. "That'll be the one that I was talking about, there, too." She keeps playing it relatively casually, though. "So, we about to get cooked or something at this point, or we cool?"

Fitz let them all talk. He was reading the meters. "Weeeeeell I dare say we are deeeefiniately going to be in quarrentine when we get back for a lil while. buuuut still…" He wandered over and furrowed his brow more "Doctor, how were these people found? Were they or their families threatened or were they abduct- OooOOooooooh weeee have a match. Billy lookit this."Heturned the reader soJulie and the others could see too. "Dizzy, this go with your findings. You said you saw a person here/ This woman part of the program and seems cleeeeraly to taking exception to teh results."

The Doctor doesn't answer Fitz, but he does know the answer.

Coulson, on the other hand, is an excellent cold reader. "Ten bucks says they were kidnapped."

The Doctor looks toward the agent and nods his head slowly.

"Well. This is all one big mess." He turns away and makes a few definitive commands. "I am listing this whole area under quarantine, per SHIELD order, and will get a UN order to support it within 48 hours. Agent William, I want you to take Fitz back to headquarters. Analyze everything you've collected, and if you need to come back to do more research, do it." He then turns around and begins walking back toward the holding room through which they entered before. "Doctor Kwunteng, you and the guerrilla soldiers upstairs are now under SHIELD protective custody. I'll go have a word with the Ghanaian General, but the whole lot of you will be coming with us."

He stops then, his dutiful nature fading to allow the compassionate one to return. He turns to the Doctor with a smile and says, "We're going to find your family, and Doctor Uso."

"Yes, sir!" Billy steps in and takes hold of Fitz' arm, murmurs, "Hearthstone, hearthstone, hearthstone, Hearthstone!" Their bodies seem to immediately turn to mist and swirl around as a tornado, though there is no wind. Suddenly the little storm of magic dissipates and they are both gone.

Julie hrms, there, committing as much of Fitz's readings, and the meter itself, to memory, both her own and hopefully Jean's, as she can. «So, they can tell a lot about where we used our stuff, maybe not so much when we're just standing here, is what I'm getting.» She does glance to Coulson again. "Sounds like maybe we could do to keep in touch on this stuff. I think at least we'll want to know how it turns out for the Doc, here. You got a card or something?" She indicates the lift, "Ah, ground floor, mighty jungles, decontamination, UN operations, going up?"

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