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by: Cole Callaway
#8608
23 April 2012
3:30 pm
MI:5, Paranormal Division
The Hounds HQ

Cole's hands rubbed the sides arms of his chair, his thumbs running over the ends of the polished wood. It was a tactic to keep him distracted, keep him from shaking his leg in anxious anticipation to get the hell out of Jones' office. "I told you everything I know. You asked me to be honest about my findings, and that's what I did. Transparency is the best when it comes to a team, and when you have this going on with two of your own, then..." He shrugged, clicking his tongue as he looked at his boss with a pitiful grin. "I just hope this doesn't cloud their judgment in the field."

Kat Bauer and Matt Cox were in a romantic relationship. It was all but confirmed, in the office. Rumors swirling through the unit made Cole upset, since he considered Kat a nice young woman and promising agent, so the 'locker room talk' was not necessary and downright crude sometimes. He'd come to her defense more than once, and folks like Geoffrey from the Pit or the other agents have learned to stop doing that nonsense...Or just avoid Cole when doing it. Either way, he was just glad he didn't have to hear any of that rubbish anymore.

Jones had asked Calloway to report with facts behind these allegations, and he felt he was doing the right thing. At least, from an honorable agent's point of view. Bauer and Cox were going to be pretty pissed off at him, there was no doubt about that. But once the dust settled and everyone in the office slithered back to their corners, they'd be left the hell alone, instead of victims of these nasty rumors. Until the next time it happened, because quite frankly--Cole had seen it happen time and time again. There was always a next time.

"Bauer is a great agent. I've spent time with her myself, and she has a lot of potential. I think she'll handle this one professionally. Cox seems like a decent guy too. I can give him the ol' hurt my sister, I'll kill you talk to him, if you'd like but, I hardly think it's necessary." Cole chuckled at himself. Whether or not Jones would take these lighthearted comments to heart, would be her call.
Last edited by Cole Callaway on Tue Feb 07, 2017 2:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by: Morgan Jones
#8613
Morgan listened intently. Cole had his heart in the right place and was a man of honor. That was the primary reason she trusted him with this sensitive subject. Certainly, the private lives of her agents wasn't her business, but what happened in her office was definitely her issue. So long as agents Bauer and Cox were behaving while here, there wasn't an issue. Jones still wanted to confront the two of them gently to let them know that, while their dating wasn't frowned on per se, they needed to be discrete. Cole certainly seemed to be willing to help...Morgan quirked a grin at his joke.

"I don't think he'd take it quite the way you meant...I'll speak to them about discretion. Thank you again for handling this for me."

As Cole left, Morgan paged her secretary. "Please call Agent Katarina Bauer and send her in at her earliest convenience."

With that completed, Jones tented her hands and planned her words. She wanted to be gentle with this, but clear.
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by: Cole Callaway
#8620
He shrugged. "Suit yourself, Boss."

Cole gave a half-assed salute to her as he stood from his chair. Not out of disrespect, just more of a casual gesture of departure. He nodded at her and left the room, passing a few other desks on the way to his own. If it was before lunchtime, he probably would have taken off. Even though he didn't have much to hide, Cole didn't want to make Katarina feel any more uncomfortable than she already was.

He just hoped Jones would go easy on her. "Just a fair warning, Kid."

Agent Bauer, please report to Director Jones office. came over the intercom and Cole sighed.

"I'm sorry."
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by: Katarina Bauer
#8621
Katarina yawned. She did that often, about this time. After-lunch drowsiness seemed to strike when she wasn't moving, with some field work. In the office, there was a lull of sorts and the monotonous task of watching footage, reading paperwork, sending emails made her sleepy.

She was about to get up and head to the break room so she could fetch a cup of coffee for herself and maybe Calloway since he was the only one at his desk--or...not. Katarina spotted him walking out of Director Jones office and he looked rather disturbed.
"Something the matter, Cal--"

Cole was apologizing, she'd been summoned by Jones, and he skulked back to his desk. Katarina narrowed her eyes. "What did you..." She asked, directed at Cole but he was out of earshot.

Katarina gulped. It was probably the longest walk down the aisle towards the directors office, and it made her uneasy. Did she do something wrong? Did she forget to cross a t or dot an I on a report she sent? Katarina took a deep breath as she passed the secretary with a hesitant smile and she knocked on the door. "I was told you were wanting to speak with me?"

Katarina peeked in. She wasn't ready to step through yet...for some reason, she was so nervous.

Did Jones find out about their sidetracking? Their investigations on garou or her father or the Devil? Kat hoped she paused the video of Matt fighting that cat...she'd fetched it from Geoffrey late last night and had been playing it back. It was just getting good, too. Or in Matt's case, really really bad.
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by: Morgan Jones
#8623
Jones looked up with a smile and gestured with her head.

"Come on in, close the door, and have a seat...and you're not in trouble, so no gallows-face, alright?"

Sure, Jones had a reputation for being a hard-ass, but being stiff and formal wasn't going to send the same message as being light and friendly would send. Getting called into the director's office wasn't fun, no matter the reason. some people got nervous, some defensive...others, like Schmidt, got purposefully snarky, but he was fortunately a minority in this office.

The Hounds didn't have many agents, not when compared to other departments. For that reason, Jones tried to keep gossip to a minimum. The fact that both Katarina and Matt were getting called in would hopefully put an end to the team-killing whispers floating about. If agents couldn't trust each other, they couldn't work well together. Nobody needed a reprimand, but a show of her awareness wouldn't hurt.

"Katarina, how have things been going in the office?"

Best to lead in lightly...
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by: Katarina Bauer
#8628
She was smiling, so that was a good sign. Director Jones was a beautiful woman and a brilliant agent, but where business was concerned, she was pretty straight up and blunt when the iron fist was necessary. Kat felt like she was back in school, a truant child reporting to the principal, which was never a fun visit.

Kat did as she said though, offering a small smile of her own, albeit a nervous one, as she stepped into the office and shut the door behind her. She made her way inside, taking the seat offered, probably the one that Cole was using when he was in here.

Kat sat there, back straight, legs uncrossed, hands folded in her lap. She brushed the stray strands of hair over her ear before shrugging. "It's been an adventure to say the least." Kat gave a nervous chuckle. "Different than my old unit, but in a good way. I've had great help over the last couple of months to get um...acclimated."
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by: Morgan Jones
#8634
"You've been a big asset to the department as well. Your willingness to jump in and help has been commented on several times. You're a good agent,"

Now came the awkward part that would both b the twist of the knife and the cleansing conversation. Jones timed her pause just so; it wouldn't do to rush into the gentle chiding, but the two ideas needed to be connected. Distraction could cost an officer their lives. An agent in this department, doubly so.

"that's why the rumors flitting around the office have been especially dismaying. Now, I know you and Agent Cox have been acting with discretion, but I think it's better if you step back from assisting him in an official capacity."

The move would hopefully ease the rumor mill. After all, Agent Cox didn't need people insinuating that he'd abused his privileges any more than she needed people speculating about her sex life.
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by: Katarina Bauer
#8637
"Thank you," She said, with a modest grin. It wasn't every day one received commendation from their boss, and one from Director Jones would be met with the highest regard. Katarina almost blushed, but when she steered the conversation in a different direction, her face went white. So the rumors had made it around the office, and made it back to the one person she'd rather not have knowing about her relationship.

The director didn't seem pissed, nor did she even sound surprised.

Wasn't this what Matt had been warning her about on their first date? He had raised the red flag, so to speak, given her fair warning that these things would happen, and these things would hurt. "Director Jones...Ma'am..." Something felt caught in her throat. Her heart rate spiked, and her face went from cold to hot in the blink of an eye. Katarina was being relieved of duty as Matt's assistant because of their relationship? On one hand she should feel so surprised, since there were protocols across MI:5 that were unchanging; The Paranormal Division was no exception. Interpersonal relationships were highly frowned upon in a unit. They happened often but Directors, department heads, Senior Agents, were forced to take certain precautions to ensure the safety, security and proper functionality of a team.

God, I hate stupid protocol, She thought.

The other hand wanted to state her plea to Director Jones. But how well would she take that? She didn't want to leave that position. They both knew how to draw a line between personal matters and professionalism. They were clocked in, in office, butts in the chair, hands on the keyboard--what more did they want? Katarina felt her hands tense up, almost shaking as she kept them folded together. "I don't believe that would be necessary, ma'am. With all due respect, you said it yourself, we've been discreet. When we're here, we're all here. We keep everything outside, and work is at the forefront. Matt--Agent Cox trusts me and we've worked out a system, at the behest of you and the Division. I just don't think that would be the right call."

Shit. Now you've said it. Katarina was notorious for some flubs, but calling out the Director of the Hounds on whether or not she was making the right decision was probably one of the bigger ones to date. She gulped. The window from Jones' office could see the bullpen from here, and had a direct line of sight toward Calloway's desk. She wanted to turn around and see if he was still there, or if he was perhaps looking back at her. Did he have any sort of remorse for what he'd done? Even though she would still see Matt on a regular basis, in the office--though in passing, or regularly outside of work, this changed everything.

Kat braced herself for Director Jones' response.
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by: Matthew Cox
#8641
He couldn't stand it anymore. The windows into Jones' office were thin enough that he could hear a distorted version of the speech. What he could hear left him beyond livid. The cold fury that gripped him left him without feeling in his fingertips. Carefully, he stood and walked over to Cole's desk. He'd brought his cane and used it as he was supposed to...part of him wanted to use it as a weapon, but that kind of fury had no place here, did it?

"Why?"

Just the one word was all that was needed. Both of them were too smart to dance around the subject. Matt's jaw clenched and unclenched, worked sideways over the words he wanted to use was weapons. For being a marine, he had an eloquence that he could bring to bear either with charm or with ire. It definitely wasn't charm right now.
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by: Cole Callaway
#8645
Cole tapped the end of the pen on the desk. He'd been staring at this incident report for a few minutes solid, since he'd left Director Jones' office, and stepped away from Kat's desk so she could report in. He turned every so often to look over his shoulder and into Jones' office, since her blinds were open, and he could see inside. He couldn't tell what was going on by the looks of it, and he wasn't about to get caught staring at Jones even though he wanted to read her lips to keep up with the conversation. There was a tinge of guilt in him, one that worried for Kat. He was truthful in saying that he was protective of her like she was his sister, and as much as he hated betraying her like this, he knew that he had to follow orders.

He sighed, continuing to tap the pen against the paper until he heard the clicking of the cane wandering in beside him. Not so much wandering, because each step seemed precise, a stomp almost, just heavier than a normal stride. It was Agent Cox. Cole looked up at him, and before he could speak to acknowledge him, he was hit with one word. Why?

Pondering that himself for a while, Cole sighed. Avoiding the question would be no use. He read Cox's file, and knew he had a lot of skills, including interrogation processes, torture tactics--as he was a Marine, research and acquisitions. Damn lawyers. "I was just doing my job, Agent Cox." Cole stated firmly. That was the long story short. Should he need more of an elaborate bit, Cole added: "I'll take the hit, Cox, but there's been a number of rumors floating around this damn office. You know you've heard them, right? Jones caught wind of them and tasked me to report on...my findings."
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by: Morgan Jones
#8706
Jones quirked her head at Kat as she started her rebuttal. Had Agent Bauer showed this much zeal to the director before? Jones couldn't remember. It was a good look on the woman. Still, it wasn't up for debate.

"Thank you for your candor...I must emphasize again though, I'm requesting you step back in an official capacity, in that I am going to take you off the record of being his assistant. However, you and Agent Schmidt have a good chemistry working as a team...Since he's a contractor, I want him to be partnered with a full agent. He and Cole will be investigations, you will take analysis, and Agent Cox will be your planning coordinator. I think the four of you working as a planning and response team would make the most amount of sense...is that satisfactory?"

A wry twist of Morgan's lips were the only compromise to the business like atmosphere she'd set. Kat had better be okay with it, because it was how things were going to be. Jones wasn't going to tell the lovebirds to knock it off, but she'd surround them with accountability.
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by: Matthew Cox
#8707
Report his findings? Matt stood poised over Cole's desk and fixed a level stare at the man as he explained himself. The anger flared up again. It was nobodies business except him and Katarina. His jaw worked slightly as he bit his tongue to keep from lashing out.

"Cole," Matt started off with the agent's first name, softly. He wasn't going to use the title of agent...this was a talk man-to-man.

"Part of doing our job is working as a team. If you see a problem with what I do, come to me first. And yes," he bit off the word, "I've heard the rumors, but since we're not in primary school anymore, I was able to ignore them."

The amount of control it took to not raise his voice was evident by the grip he kept on his cane. Precise control, don't lash out, don't reveal the fire inside...It was a daily battle now.
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by: Katarina Bauer
#8709
"Analysis?" Katarina was taken aback by the notion that she'd be on the analytical side at base, rather than in the field doing the heavy investigation work, where she was most comfortable. She was the head of her old unit, one of the best Investigators according to her old director, and enjoyed being out in the field instead of being cooped up at HQ 85% of the time. At least she'd made nice with Geoffrey, but now she'd be spending more time with the techs in the pit instead of assisting Matt like she should be. Not that he needed the assistance, but that's what she was tasked to do in the first place--but that's what led to this unusual relationship twist with Klaus and now this sudden betrayal by Cole... Her stomach was in knots. Katarina sat there, stewing in it, trying to compose her thoughts on the matter. "Director, I'd have you know that I prefer to be boots on the ground, in the field--not stapling piles of paperwork and staring at footage with those in the pit all day." That was the one gripe she was going to get, so she had to take the opportunity while it lie before her. "But if this is an order, then I can't quite dispute."

Katarina had made note that she and Matt didn't have to stop seeing each other. That was a plus, sure, but why the cloak and dagger? Why send someone like Calloway to snitch on them? Hurray, now their relationship was in the open. They weren't trying to keep things secretive in a bad way, they were just trying to test the waters, see where this would go. It had only been a week, for chrissakes. This just pissed her off...why were people meddling with her personal life?

"Well, would you prefer I move my desk back to its original location?" Katarina finally looked at Jones again, placing her gaze somewhere above her eyes, because looking directly into her eyes would make her even more upset. She hated to concede and so quickly, but arguing with the director wasn't going to get her very far.
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by: Cole Callaway
#8711
Matt was tense. He got that. Cole noticed Matt was always tense. Was it the atmosphere? Did he have that thing going for him where most of his senses kicked in a bit extra because his vision was shot? That'd make Cole too, if he had to put up with extra smells or sounds or sensitive touch.

"Primary school? Look, mate." Calloway leaned in to keep the conversation between them, and had the decency to lower his voice as well, so the Pit or anyone surrounding them couldn't hear. "If you had heard even half of what was said about her, you'd want that bollocks to end too. I am her friend, and I couldn't ignore it, and I even said something to those tossers to protect her. And to protect you. I don't know too much about you, Matt, but I did that much, at least."

Cole scoffed as he folded his arms and leaned back into his chair, opening the distance between them some, but his voice didn't change. He kept the conversation low. "Weren't you a marine, Matt? Soldiers follow orders, last I checked. If it's for the better of the team, or the unit, to be on the same page, then perhaps following this simple order given to me by Director Jones herself helped more than you think." Greater good, and all that. Cole didn't want to see the Hounds get ripped apart by some budding romance that was just going to be a liability if kept so much in the shadows. They'd be liabilities for each other and the team either way, but without all of the secrecy, things would be more transparent and less of a guessing game. Cole was just trying to protect Bauer too, and he'd have to, if this Matt guy's temper got out of hand with her. He didn't know Matt very well, but he knew he'd have to keep a close eye on him now that they were together.
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by: Morgan Jones
#8765
How did she explain to the girl that her skills on the ground were good, but her analytical skills were uncanny? It was like she had a sixth sense for unraveling things and putting together information. Jones allowed the smile to come back to her face as she attempted to explain.

"Like it or not, you are a gifted analyst. You'll get the chance to go out into the field, but for now, I'm putting you where you're the best asset to your team."

Speaking of which, Jones addressed the question of moving.

"Your desk stays where it is. You, Cole, Matt and Klaus will be seated together as a team to work on special assignments directly from my desk. I assembled my best together for a reason. With the man in black as well as rumors of other things, I want a fast response team available to me that already knows how to work together. You'll have a budget and a pool of resources for these assignments."

Jones had the four of them pegged for this assignment before she heard the rumors of the relationship. Now that it was confirmed, she wasn't going to change anything. They were behaving like adults, so she'd let them be adults.
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