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Synopsis: Footfalls In the Dark
Act I : The Prodigy
Jin stands a dark room. The silhouette of a figure is outlined in a doorway where light streams in from. Jin narrates:
"I have been here many times.
Something unseen begins to chase Jin as she flees.
"I am running from something I cannot see,
The unseen pursuer grabs Jin at the shoulder, at this point which Jin awakens in the back of of a London Blackcab which has pulled up in front of No. 1, Lanner Place, the headquarters for the Greenstone Agency.
Elsewhere in Lanner Place, Juno is rudely awakened by Lysanne, who after some initial teasing, makes it known to that he's overslept and should have been down in their boss's office ten minutes ago.
While waiting for Juno to arrive, Jade Lanner challenges Jin to a game of chess to while away the time. They fall into conversation, where Jin confesses her doubts to why Jade chose her instead of the other more capable mercenaries-in-training. They are interrupted by the arrival of Juno. While leaving to answer the door, Jade calls out 'Check!', leaving Jin staring at the chessboard in surprise.
After introducing Jin and Juno to each other, Jade informs Juno he's partnering Juno to Jin so Juno can 'show Jin the ropes'. Jin is startled by Juno's young appearance. After the youth leaves, she is even more unsettled to find that her prospective partner is not more than twenty years of age.
Jade reminds Jin about the chess game. Jin return to the board, thinks for a while, and finally moves a piece. "Checkmate." She announces.
Before Jade can congratulate Jin properly, however, Jin calmly states that she did not win the game fairly. She goes on to state that a piece was moved, and indirectly accuses Jade of letting her win.
Instead of being angry however, Jade seems pleased at this accusation, and tells Jin she's 'passed'. It turns out that the purpose of the chess game was to test Jin's astuteness, and it was because of this that Jade chose her out of all the other mercenaries.
In a non-descript house in Notting Hill Gate, London, a young girl sits at a kitchen table working on homework. Her mother cooks dinner in the background. The phone rings and the girl answers it. A voice addresses the girl by name. "Gaile?"
The caller turns out to the the Gaile's father, Thomas. On discovering this, the mother reacts in anger, snatching the phone out of the daughter's hand and berating the father for calling despite a court order not to. The father warns the mother, Marrisse, that he will see his daughter before he dies. "One way or another.".
Despite the fact Gaile's sympathies appear to be with her father, Marrisse refuses to allow Thomas contact with Gaile and warns him to stay away before slamming the phone down. Gaile reacts in anger at not being give a choice, escalating into an argument between mother an daughter. It ends with Gaile running to confine herself in her room.
Jin is once more in her recurring dream, with the dark figure chasing her once more. This time she remembers her vow to stop running and hiding, so she turns around and decides to face her pursuer.
But as she does so, she catches a glimpse of the pursuer and freezes in horror. In that same moment of vulnerability, the pursuer strikes her down. "Wake Up! In pain and on the floor, she tries to force herself to get up as the dark figure towers above her, arms raised...
... when suddenly, she wakes up in her bed, the bedside clock indicating it is three in the morning.
Blaming jet lag for her nightmares, she goes to get a drink and runs into Doc Ice, the mercenary medic, having a cup of tea in the sitting area. When Jin does not appear to recognise him, the Doc reminds her he met her four years ago, the first night Jade brought her in.
Jin reacts in astonishment, and delicately mentions that the good Doctor's looks have changed somewhat. This is an understatement, but the Doctor takes it in stride. He declines to elaborate on his change in appearance, but instead asks Jin her reason for being nocturnal. Jin confesses her sleeping problems and is invited to a cup of tea and a talk.
The topic of conversation soon shifts to Juno, whom Doc Ice asserts is a capable mercenary despite his looks. Jin is slighty reassured, but is by no means convinced.
Cut to the next morning, where Juno drives Jin to the mercenaries' new equipment facility to be measured for some special armor Jade has commissioned. The facility's head, Aidan shows the two around and gets Jin measured up for the armor while Juno is left in the clutches of a besotted mechanic.
Back in Notting Hill Gate, Marrisse stands outside Gaile's bedroom door, entreating the girl to come out. When there is no answer, she threatens to come in using her keys. On finding to response, she proceeds to carry out her threat, only to find the room empty with the windows wide open and curtains flapping in the wind.
Act II : The End of Usefulness
On finishing off with the measurements, Aidan shows Jin some of the other gadgets the facility is working on, one of them being a set of 'light adjustment glasses'. He mentions that they've been having some trouble with the prototypes where the glasses tend to over-compensate in bright lights for no apparent reason. He gives Jin one to keep as a tester.
At this point, a disgruntled Juno shows up. After a little good-natured teasing about the sexy mechanic, Juno receives a call from Jade about a 'missing-persons' job. They decide to stop there on the way back.
The two meet up with their client, Marrisse. After explaining the situation to them, Jin and Juno search Gailes room for clues leading to her disappearance. Jin is surprised to find Gaile's very advance mathematics books, and on enquiring, finds out that the girl in question is a mathematical prodigy. Marrisse comments that Jin seems familiar, and wonders if they have met. Jin responds in the negative, and their conversation is cut short when Juno calls her over to look at the window where someone climbed down the trellis outside.
Examination of the grounds reveals one set of footprints, which leads to the conclusion Gaile was not kidnapped, but ran away. Jin looks at one of the books found thrown in the room, and notes it is a book entitled "Birds of Hyde Park". A bookmark is set inside the book.
Marrisse mentions that the book was a gift from the girl's father for her eleventh birthday, which was a week ago. It is revealed that Gaile has had little contact with her father since the parents separated nine months ago. Marrisse mentions Thomas insists Gaile is not at his place, but the mercenaries decide to pay Daddy a visit anyway.
Juno's ringing of Thomas Moore's doorbell is answered by the very formidable housekeeper/nurse Sonya. After a little exchange of words, Thomas allows them in. Though at first quite unfriendly, he agrees to answer some questions. Although he does deny harbouring Gaile, he reveals that he is, in fact, dying of cancer and this is the reason why he is so desperate to see his daughter one last time. He also states that Marrisse is unwilling to let Gaile know the truth about his state, citing the strain it would be on the child.
On leaving the Moore residence, Juno voices his distrust of Thomas Moore, noting he appears to have a lack of concern about his daughter's safety that is quite unnatural for a parent. He heads back to Notting Hill Gate to check on something, but leaves Jin to secretly keep an eye on Thomas Moore.
Arriving at Notting Hill Gate, Juno spots Marrisse seeing a man off. On enquiring to the identity of the stranger, Marrisse replies it is nothing important. Marrisse, in a very disturbed state, begs to be alone, leaving a puzzle Juno glancing down on a document the stranger has left on the sideboard.
A document that reads: Court Order Revoked
Back at the Moore Residence, Jin spots Thomas (in a wheelchair) and Sonya leaving. Noting that they are heading towards the nearby Hyde Park, she ponders if they were planning to feed the birds... and realises something in the process.
Angry at herself for not seeing it earlier, she goes after them, pulling out her phone and calling Juno as she does so.
Breathlessly, Jin voices her theory that the entire thing is an elaborate plan for Thomas to meet up with Gaile. As she reports the location to Juno, Juno's attention is diverted as a scream reverberates from the room Marrisse disappeared to...
Jin, in hot pursuit, catches up with Thomas and Sonya and finds the missing Gaile with them. She confronts Thomas, and reveals that the bookmark in the present was actually an encrypted code with a message for the meeting. Thomas is defiant, and declares Gaile knows the truth now.
Jin asserts her job is to ensure Gaile is safe, and not to prevent Thomas from seeing her.
Juno, rushing to Marrisse's aid, finds the woman on the floor, in a state of terror. Motioning to the bathroom, she warns him of an intruder in there. Pulling out his handy Beretta, Juno enters the bathroom, only to find it empty. Without warning, the door behind him slams shut and is locked from the outside.
Thomas releases Gaile into Jin's care to be guided home, charging her with Gaile's safety. Thomas and Sonya go home, Jin and Gaile head for Notting Hill Gate.
Meanwhile, Juno finds himself locked in, with Marrisse, calmly stating while she leaves, that he has reached the end of his usefulness.
Act III : The Waking Dream
Juno escapes through the bathroom window, but find the tyres on his car slashed and is forced to pursue Marrisse on foot.
Meanwhile, Thomas and Sonya reach home. Marrisse unexpectedly shows up and knocks Sonya out from behind. A kitchen knife in her hand, she faces the defenseless, yet defiant man in the wheelchair.
By the time Sonya comes to, she finds Juno crouching over her and Thomas Moore dead. Juno phones ahead to warn Jin of the danger. He finishes his warning just as Marrisse pulls up in her car...
Marrisse orders Gaile into the car, but the girl refuses. Reacting to the rejection, Marrisse angrily drives away...
...and then turns around and tries to run the both of them down. Jin tackles Gaile out of the way in time, but Marrisse turns around yet again for another go...
Jin tells Gaile to run for it and offers herself as a distraction. Marrisse attempts to put her out of the way first. Just as she heads for Jin, Jin's now forgotten 'light adjustment glasses' suddenly malfunction, resulting in everything in her view becoming dark. In the dark and with Marrisse pursuing her, Jin suddenly realises she is in fact, in her recurring dream where she is being chased.
Only this time, it is not a dream.
Running desperately for it, she throws off the glasses only to find Juno arriving at last. Juno fires several shots at Marrisse's incoming car to scare her off. This works. As the car narrowly misses Juno, he is unfortunate enough to be in the way of another car whose driver is unable to stop...
Juno is hit my the car just as it slows to a stop. As this happens, Jin realises that Marrisse has ditched her car and gone after Gaile on foot. A wounded Juno yells for Jin to go after her. Jin rapidly catches up with Marrisse and floors the woman with a mighty punch.
Jin confronts Marrisse about her murdering Thomas. Marrisse responds with scorn, addressing Jin as a Mrs. Ellis and revealing that she knows something about Jin's past. Jin suddenly recognises Marrisse and freezes in horror as Marrisse goes on to remind Jin about her own arrest for murder.
Taking advantage of Jin's distraction, Marrisse flies at Jin, the previously hidden knife now in hand.
Act IV : The Dark Figure
Back in the dream once more, Jin lies in pain on the floor. The disembodied voices are screaming for her to get up, and to wake up before it is too late. As the dark figure towers over her, Jin wakes up...
To find herself standing over Marrisse, blade in hand. Confused, she looks at the bloodied knife and drops it in horror. She makes another reference to the past murder, saying "It was just like last time, I couldn't remember a thing."
At this inopportune moment, she realises Juno is standing behind her.
However, Juno only reacts by asking how badly hurt Jin is. With relief, she realises that the blood on the knife is her own, and she did not kill Marrisse, but only knocked her out. As they compare injuries, Sonya shows up with Gaile in tow.
The job ends with Marrisse being taken away by the police and Gaile by Social Services. The ride home is an uncomfortable one for Jin and Juno, Jin not wishing to talk about her past crime.
Back at Lanner Place, the Doc patches the two up. After attending to Juno, he spots the depressed Jin moping in the sitting room area and endeavors to talk to her. He reveals he knew the facts behind her case all this while and reminds her matter-of-factly she couldn't hide from it forever.
Despite Jin's apprehension at her secret being out, the Doctor assures Jin that the past makes no difference to the mercenaries, and if Jade trusts Jin, they will as well.
Finally assured of a place where she can be accepted, Jin vows once more over a cup of tea to stop running from shadows, and simply face the past when it comes.
Go Back to Four Years Late Synopsis.
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