2019-08-07 - Connection Points


Hank and Jemma discuss the AIM bio-phage and make inroads on a cure, they hope.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Wed Aug 7 03:31:19 2019
Location: The Triskellian - Jemma's Lab

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It seems like Jemma is always working. Working or training, at any rate. It's a gruelling schedule but with the Reverbium bioweapons being created, it's not like she has a lot of options. One option, of course, is to enlist the help of others - which is just what she's done.

Doctor Hank McCoy is just being shown to the door of her laboratory by SHIELD security as Jemma is reviewing some intel that's come in. Above the workbench is a 3D holographic model of the DNA structure they've been working on, with side windows that have notes of the tests they've been doing.

Of course, there's a pot of tea already steeping. There's nothing like a good cup of tea to revitalise one self, after all.

And Hank has a similarly hectic schedule most of the time, though he does moderate the insane spurts of busy with the occasional run about the woods, or social or arts event. Hank is dressed for work, simple shirt and slacks, and ready for his lab coat, Mister Demille. Okay, not a close up, but hey.

"Good evening, Jemma." Hank greets with that pleasant bass voice of his. He perks when he sees the steeping tea, diverting to check if it is ready, and pouring for both of them when it proves that it is. His own is taken straight, and Jemma's prepared in whatever way she likes, he has a good memory after all.

He looks at the 3D model even a he hands her her cuppa, and then reaches up to manipulate one of the note windows, pulling it out to a separate space where he can enlarge it and review the contents. "Ah, I have acquired a bit of Reverbium and a weapon, one of the voice boxes, from Mister Gleason, also ran some comprehensive tests on an associate of ours, Miss Isis Marik."

"Hank." Jemma looks up as the blue fuzzy man enters, closing the screen on her terminal and getting up from her desk. "I was just reviewing some reports. I need to forward those to Barton, London and Harper. The other side of this investigation, trying to shut the production facilities down." beat "I'm not sure how I ended up coordinating all this. At least London is helping with that."

She means other agents, ones that Hank might not be familiar with.

"And thank you, you're an angel." she says taking the tea. Black, of course. Why ruin a beautiful with milk or sugar? Taking a sip, she listens to the other scientists update. "You did get some? That's excellent." The news that he'd run some tests on someone gets a raised eyebrow. "For my part, three Asgardians are still alive but in a critical state - our work slowed the infection but they're *still* infected. Jeriah London made a suggestion that I think might hold water."

"We've also retrieved some data from AIM that might prove helpful. Part of the formula for creating Reverbium, but not all of it. They do like to spread things around. Did you get my report on how volatile this stuff is?"

That had been sent over in the last few days. A report on how even the gas that was used to disseminate the bio-phage could be "ignited" if a sound at the "right" frequency was used near it.

"Jemma…I don't know any of those people, is my clearance sufficient to know them?" At least Hank cares about that! He's a consultant, not an actual agent. That can produce some interesting dynamics, but not bad ones in this case, thankfully. "If I am cleared I'll be happy to assist, of course." And he does have a very diverse background to draw on which also makes for interesting dynamics.

He grins with her reaction to the tea. "Well, dear lady, you DID have the brilliant good sense to have it steeping, so in a way /we/ are angels." He frowns though when the poor condition of the Asgardians is mentioned. "Blast it, I was really hopeful about the layered protein blockers, still, they did buy us some time." He quirks a brow very eloquent of his interest in what London's suggestion was.

A nod then. "Oh yes, I got the report, fascinating. It actually made me consider a sort of oscillation grenade - it sends out a constant sonic pulse that starts subsonic and goes ultra in a series of cascading bursts. Might be fun to /lead/ with one of those the next time an AIM base is found…" He hands her a thumb drive. "…specs and my test results on Miss Marik, and the weapon, and the forensic analysis of the captured car, I sent him a copy as as well, of course." Nick.

"Yes, you can know them. They're Agents assigned to this case. I expect at one point or another you might be working with them. Or at least have to deal with them. They're field agents not scientists though. Well, Jeriah London is an interesting conundrum… He was part of a team that worked for AIM on a reverbium project." But Field Agents, in Jemma's experience, normally like to shoot first, ask questions later.

"They'll be going after the facilities we're identifying. Collecting what they can and closing them down. Permanently, I hope." That might mean there's explosions as well. The better kind. The kind that SHIELD cause.

"The protein blockers have certainly helped, but the Reverbium has bond their cells. We need a way to flush it. It was Londons suggestion that got me thinking on that - a serum or antibody that binds to the Reverbium and flushes from the body."

As to the volatile nature of the material, Jemma nods slowly. "That's not a bad idea, I'll suggest to the team. See if Engineering can whip up something in that manner. The biggest problem I have, is that this is likely an unintended consquence of bad research practices and lack of ethics on the AIM scientists part."

Meaning the explosions weren't meant to happen, they're a nuisance, but AIM don't care.

Taking the thumb drive, Jemma inserts into a standalone machine, which scans the device before downloading the data. "Thank you. I'll take a look at that shortly."

"Right then, can I see dossiers?" Not asking much, is he? Still, might not hurt. "Well..I'm one of the X-Men, sort of a Field Agent, AND a Scientist, the classifications aren't mutually exclussive." He looks meaningfully at Jemma as he says this, they DID meet in the field after all.

Well, re-meet, after school.

"Right, well, the oscillation devices might work to detonate the reverbium weapons…or do you think the weaponized material is more stable?"

He studies the Necro-Toxin, then reaches out to rotate it, studying the structure. "A bonding agent…intersting." He taps several points on the model. "This points might make good anchors, could tailor an influenza bacterium, or a cold virus as the delivery system…" He calls up new windows with each. "I think the flu bug would actually be more apt for this, it is more aggresive."

Hank takes the drive back, and tucks it away. "You're welcome. I look forward to your assessment. Oh! I -did- mock up a basic design for the oscillation grenade, just a basic design, but it might be a good starting point for your tech boys and girls."

"Heh. I'll get you some briefs on the gentlemen, if I can." Jemma smiles. "Two archers and man who has robotic dogs that he controls with implants."

"I think some of the material is more stable. Particular the stuff that has been used as implants but I'm fairly certain the bio-phage has been through the same quality control. AIM has certainly used Reverbium in a number of applications and across a number of programs. They don't speak to each other, I'm sure."

"The flu bug is a good thought. London compared to it hemorrhagic fever and I can't argue with him on that. The question is, how do we bind the Reverbium to flush it?" They've a sample now, they can test with and some of the 'recipe' to make it, that should be enough shouldn't it?

"Oh, you do? That's fantastic. I'll introduce you to the Engineering team, maybe London will be able to help too."

"I don't want other men's briefs, thanks." Hank quips without thinking, and then peers at Jemma with a lopsided grin. "Archers and a cyberdog wrangler, that's an interesting mix." Of course Hank lives at a school full of mutants - diversity? Not a problem, or even unusual for him. He routinely encounters shapeshifts, people that fly, people that can warp the very nature of reality on a number of levels. Archer? Dog wrangler? That isn't even in the top fifty weird combos Hank's dealt with.

"I really think it might be a good approach to find a common point to the various strains of reverbium, it has to have a core composition, if we can find the frequency to /that/ it won't matter how stable the form might be is, we can still detonate it." A nod about the phage. "As to that, we don't want to explode the bio-weapon, that's as bad or worse than what it does."

Hank chews his lower lip, and then looks to the model again. "Well…how about this…what if we start with hemorraghic fever instead, and target it to 'eat' the reverbium in the necrotoxin, woulnd't that break entire thing apart?"

"You don't?" Jemma blushes though. She always does. "It is an interesting mix. I should also mention Doctor Dehaven who specialises in Mind Body Interfaces. She's been wonderful working with me and my … updgrades. Unlike London who tried to hack me twice when he met me."

That sounds like a story and then some.

"I think it might. Let's see what we can find about the Reverbium from the data we've collected from AIM."

Another display opens up and the tech specs of what they've recovered are shown. There's nowhere near enough information, but there's some that they can work with. Jemma takes a moment to read. "How are you going with your own project, Hank?"

"Well, I suppose wearing Ralph Lauren's might count…" Hank grins, enjoying the blush, he can't help it — he IS a bit of a brat. Probably the fur, yeah, that must be it, because he was always so serious wheh…okay, no, it's just Hank.

"He hacked you…twice?" Hank just leans on a section of console. "Give! Details, dear lady, need them."

Hank helps with the data searches and collation. Dry stuff, and time consuming, and he's happy as a clam doing it. Such a nerd! Works for him though.

"I actually have a model of the the transmog serum, but haven't had a chance yet to culture some. The sims I've run however are VERY encouraging." He looks to his fellow scientist, his peer. "I just might happen to have the tri-d model on a drive with me…" He offers with a toothy grin.

"I prefer Calvin Kleins?" Jemma's blush gets a little brighter. It's not just Hank that teases her - most people do, it might have something to do with the colour she ends up.

"Yes, twice. the first time we'd met on location and he thought my network was an AIM node. The security embedded into the coding of my implants stopped him. When he was assigned to come and work with us, he'd had time to work out the algorithm and still thinking I was an AIM node that had infiltrated …" She shrugs. "Doctor Dehaven had to shut me down before he compromised me. Uh, I mean my system."

Yes, yes, Jemma's blushing.

"What do you think if we try this combination of anchor points." She gestures to the model and points start to light up. That might give us a starting point at least, don't you think?"

At the mention of a model for Hanks own project, she gestures again. "Oh, be my guest…"

Hank's laughter is warm, full, and utterly without any hints of mean. Sure, he's -capable- of being mean, but he needs a really good reason for it. It just is not his natural mindset in general, or in particular. The bright blushing is definitely adorable, and well worth the effort, right then—add that to the visit list!

"I know this is a highly personal question, Jemma, but do you think I might be allowed to examine your hardware at some point in time?" Yes, Hanks expecting another blush, but he's actually serious as well. The gear she's equipped with is clearly some extraordinary stuff, and he's quite fond of technology! And he's right fond of Jemma too, silly man, he'd like to make sure that she's not at risk. Funny thing that, he has no desire to lose a friend, or have them go berserk on a deadly kill crazy rampage, you know?

Truth be told - at the mention of her being compromised, HANK might be a little blushy! Luckily, it just makes his fur look a bit darker midnight, so there's that.

Diverted by the dots on the tri-D model, Hank is quite engaged. Redirect: Complete! "Oh, that's very good, and maybe ancillary anchor points here…and here?" He taps them. "With the way the molecules seem to self-adjust, they'd be the likely replacements for some of the others, giving the counteragent a better chance…all those years of training by the Department of Redundancy Department, paying off."

At the end, when she gives permission, he pulls up the transmog serum's molecular model. First off, she can tell it is based first on some sort of exotic hormone. And then heavily modified, laced with reverbium in a very precise and truly elegant fashion. Say what you will, the man's reputation as biochemist and geneticist is definitely deserved!

The blushing starts to subside and instead of cherry red, Jemma goes to just pink. "Inspect my … you can, though it is highly sensitive information. We can do that though, when you're in the next time, perhaps." Death Lok protocols. Hank might be horrified when he finds out what was done.

"I think that's a good start, with the information we have. The others will be heading out soon to retrieve more from AIM but we can't afford to delay." She chuckles at Hanks joke "Well, it is AIM after all. I'd rather like to make them redundant."

When his own model is displayed, the biochem takes a moment to assess it. "Wow. This is really good stuff. Might I ask what the hormone you're using is? You've got the reverbium hooked in well here - just be sure to make sure its stable when you use it. What made you use that gene pairing, there? That's inspired."

Cherry is premo, but pink is still good. "Excellent, Jemma, I look forward to it." And yes, he's going to be more than a little horrified by what was done to her. And a lot angry, actually, depending on the level of the horrible. Hank has an overdeveloped sense of protectiveness. Like a lot. A LOT lot, in fact.

"Oh, I agree that the gene pool sometimes lacks for bleach, no question. AIM really makes me in favor of taking sterner measures…what they did to my associate Miss Marik…" For a moment his blue eyes go golden, and the quite urbane and affable man she's known is somehow briefly supplanted by a fairly terrifying predator, bu tonly a moment, Hank's fists unclench with an audible creaking of bones. And then he looks a little ashamed. "Forgive me, sometimes I get…angry." Um. Yes. Understatement much?

He takes refuge in the science once more. "Thank you. Actually…the base hormone is what triggered my secondary mutation in the first place, ironic, yes? I developed it as part of a serum to boost mutant abilities, I found that it did so, but when I was under its effects I grew fur and fangs…in any case I dosed myself too long and the changes triggered a permanent secondary mutation, I think the second ever recorded, there was a fellow in one of the Soviet era researches that was similarly impacted though with very different triggers."

"That's a great question…the pairing controls, in part, hirsuteness. By bonding there, that aspect of the alterations is suppressed that much more effectively." A faint frown. "It is /slightly/ possible I might end up with -no- hair, but less than a 12% chance of that…"

If Jemma didn't know better she might think that London and Hank had a book going for who could make her blush the most. They wouldn't though …. would they?

"Lacking for bleach, I like that." The biochem blinks at the change in her friend and she stills. Not that she's scared, but she's aware of the change and what it means. She's worked with a number of people who have had similar … changes and of course, there's her own emotional imbalance that she deals with. "Perfectly understandable, Hank. How about some more tea?" Because Tea cures all ills, doesn't it?

"If that hormone triggered the secondary mutation, using it now is a good idea. If I remember correctly, you said you also got stronger with that mutation? Are you concerned that will be a side effect of what you are doing?" she smirks, just a little, at his last comment "No hair. Well, you wouldn't be the first but it would be a change."

It COULD happen, but first Hank and London would need to meet, but man…that could be a fun contest of bratty-mans, like champions only totally not.

"Facilities support is one of my jobs at the institute, I have to deal with our pool." And the hair that he and others contribute, but that's an entirely different sort of problem. Does explain the analogy! A somewhat shamefaced smile. "And yes, more tea, that would be lovely."

Hank nods at her assessment about the hormone. "Yes, it has proven effective in the mutation process, and the extract used to make the serum is quite potent." Hank smiles. "It increased my physical strength ten fold, for a short while after I possessed a vastly boosted healing factor, I still heal quickly, but at that time I could recover from gun shots moments after the injury, literally within seconds." He nods. "It /could/ boost my strength again, more likely though it will return to my prior strength level." Hank strikes a pose. "I might be /dolphin/ smooth, dear lady." And then he laughs. "That WOULD be a sharp change."

And of course Jemma blushes again at that visual. What? She's a biochemist! Of course it's of interest. That's it entirely.

"Well, let me get some more tea on to steep and we can run some models on what we've discussed and see if we can do some more tests of the bio-phage." beat "And you can regale me with what your modelling predicts for your serum."

Both of the scientists know that it's not that simple. The models are just that. What the serum does in the wild … is anyones guess.

Of course! That has to be it, what else COULD it be?!

No doubt they'll be working well into the night, possibly until the next morning, and on through lunch…yeah, these two, no sense of proportions when it comes to their work. They get distracted, and the next thing they know its ten hours later, and they need more tea! "Agreed, Doctor Simmons." Hank's reply comes immediately after the question. What's really nice for Hank is working with a true peer - that's worth more than all the tea in China. It is literally priceless for him, that's how much loves science and the meeting of minds. He'll definitely want to meet the engineers, and the agents.

Simple? Nothing is ever simple! Where's the fun in that?

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