Kat (cisne_do_norte) wrote,

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An early morning phone call

*ring, ring* 

The sound of the telephone is muted, discreet, almost apologetic ... as though calls received at such an early hour of the day can only bring bad news.  Kat looks up from the newspaper and frowns slightly.  Just past 6:00 a.m., so probably not a local caller.  Swan, perhaps, calling from Los Angeles.  Or Vladimir in Moscow; it's two hours later there, and after their last series of talks, hearing from him wouldn't be unexpected.   She puts down the paper, rises, and walks to the desk, lifting the phone receiver just as the next ring starts.

 Hello?  Dr. Norte speaking. 
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*says nothing, panic starts to rise, swallows, tries to keep control*
Hello? Is anyone there? *quietly* Vladimir?
*finds voice* Zis is Dominique de Villepin. I trust you know who I am?
*is shocked, but doesn't let it show*

Of course, Mr. Prime Minister. Good morning. How may I help you?
I... *affects a bored tone as best as he can* I was calling to ask how V..how...*swallows* how is...he?
*cautiously* He was in Zürich just this past weekend, and we spent some time together. It was the first time I'd seen him since early February. I know he's been under some stress recently, crises on the international and ... domestic ... front to deal with, and it's taking a toll. He has a great deal on his mind. I don't think he's sleeping well. I know he isn't eating.
*swallows again, clears throat* Zat's...is he going to be all right?
*small sigh* That's hard to answer. How do you define "all right"?
*is silent for a while* I don't know, I...*more clearly* Zank you, anyway, I am wasting your time.
No, please, don't hang up. I would like it if we could talk a little. I'm just not sure an international phone call is the best way to do it.
What do you mean?


10 years ago


10 years ago


10 years ago


10 years ago

Please don't misunderstand me. I'm not talking about things leading up to the ... accident with the pills. I'm just trying to find out a bit more about what happened afterwards. I think perhaps the sequence of events may be a bit clouded for him, and he doesn't want to admit that there are things he doesn't remember clearly. You were clear-eyed and clear-headed, I imagine, and you were the only one with him for several hours. There really is no other way for me to find out what I need to know. And I think I do need to understand this if I'm to help him properly.
*another long silence, sighs, restrained* I'm intending to travel to Switzerland this weekend to meet with a colleague. I suppose I could manage to spare a few minutes...
*warmly* I'd be very grateful if you can manage to find some time to see me. *hesitates* I think I should tell you, though, that he'll also be in Zürich that weekend. Normally he comes in Friday morning and stays until Sunday afternoon; we usually have morning or afternoon sessions each day he's in the city. Does that pose a problem for you?
(am going now)

No *swallows*...zat's fine. I'll be zere for a few hours on Thursday, and zen I'll leave.
That's all right, then. Let me just make sure I have nothing scheduled for Thursday ... *brief silence while calendar page is checked* No, Thursday is completely open for me. If you'd like to ring me when you arrive, we can decide when and where to meet. And Mr. Prime Minister? Thank you.
*clears throat* It is nothing. I shall see you zen. *hangs up abruptly*
Tavi, has Jen sent the finished fic to you? If not, just so you know, she has Silvio deciding to stay on in Zürich another night, and Dominique acquiescing in the unspoken request to share his bed again. Then there's drama in the corridor, and a shell-shocked Vlad comes stumbling into his Friday morning session with Kat. Jen and I are writing that scene now.

So far the name "Silvio" hasn't passed Vlad's lips, and Kat is startled by what Vlad is telling her, because she thought Dominique had left Switzerland yesterday, after his chat with her and after concluding whatever business it was that brought him there (some vague meeting with a colleague is all he said on the phone). Shall we write the Kat-Dominique meeting so she doesn't know either about the change in plans (his decision to stay overnight) or who he's there to meet, and for what purpose? This would seem to make sense. Considering how wary he is about her, I can't imagine him saying any more than he absolutely has to in this first encounter with her.
Yes, have seen it: am still reeling from the shock of that creep hurting Dominique like that... I suppose the second night is going to be number 2 out of the 5 scheduled sessions? Am bit worried about how this will work now...I had this whole idea that after seeing Kat several times, Dominique would finally decide not to go up and see Silvio after all, but that won't be possible if he has a limited set of 5 pre-arranged.

OK, let's start the "chat". Will you open it in Kat's journal?
I don't know whether Dominique willl be getting paid for this second night or not; maybe Silvio didn't bring any more than the first 4 million, and just figures Dominique won't be in a position to say no to giving him a freebie. And given the way he accepted his first payment ("meekly", remember), Silvio is probably reading him correctly.

Perhaps Silvio thinks that given enough time he can have Dominique without having to pay. It's just a matter of conditioning him to accept Silvio, and a broken Dominique is already partway there.

I think a lot will depend on the scene you and Jen write after the second night.

How long will you be online? I have to dash out for about 30 minutes, and then have a meeting starting at 2 p.m (an hour from now). It's only supposed to last until 2:30 p.m.

Let me go open up the chat, and then I'll do my errand.
The implication is that it's 4mil./time over five times, and come to think of it, I have to just put in something there that indicates that - but it's not like there's a signed, legally-binding contract - it does present Dominique with a bit of a choice, though: how desperate is he to get the money? He can always refuse not to continue going...

I made Dominique stay another night because you said he'd come to see Vlad after the second night - did I misunderstand? I can still change things, I haven't posted it yet...
I meant the second visit to Zurich, but if you want to have two nights in a row, that's fine, but Dominique will insist on being paid for it.
*headdesk* I thought you meant the next day... hmm... I suppose we could stretch it out over a week, that would bring us slocer to real-time. Of course Dominique will be paid - none of these encounters are for free, both of them know that - it's just split up because, well, I figure Silvio's offer was too good to refuse (you were even surprised by the 4mil., but I think in the circumstances, that would not be an unthinkable amount), but Silvio also wants to hedge his bets and keep Dominique coming back, so he's not going to give the 20 mil. all in one go...

You're not on g-chat?
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