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Shadows In Mirrors

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Moira O’Deorain sat at her desk in a dimly lit office, scowling at her holo-monitor. 

 

With few new experimentation opportunities allowed to her, an annoying break in her pursuit of scientific perfection, she had taken to reading old documents on previous specimens for new ventures into previously untapped fields of work.

 

She flicked absentmindedly through pages of notes, occasionally taking a moment to glance at a data panel displaying human vital signs. Pausing, she waved a long nail at a small box on the display.

 

“More activity than expected…” She muttered to herself, the indicated brain inside the holographic figure’s head pulsing softly. She leant back, shaking her head. “It appears further conditioning will be required to make you tick in time Ms Guillard.”

 

A sudden buzz brought Moira out of her musings, glaring up at the door. With a button press from her desk, the door slid open to reveal a Talon scientist carrying a large metal box.

 

“I have the documents you requested from the recent hack for you Dr. O’Deorain.” Came the muffled voice of the carrier.

 

“Here.” Moira said, pointing at the floor beside her desk.

 

The researcher stumbled slightly, attempting to remain balanced with the heavy weight, Moira watching impassively as the underling placed the box down with a clang.

 

“I don’t know just what is in this to make it so heavy.” The smirk on the man's face faded quickly when met with the continued deadness of his superior’s expression. With a simple wave of the hand, Moira dismissed him, waiting until he had left the room before turning to her new interest.

 

Taking the lid off, Moira allowed herself a small chuckle. Inside, stacked neatly, was a single small thumb-drive, two blue binders containing paper files and a handful of small gravity condenser cubes.

 

“A good practical joke on the weak indeed.” She murmured, lips curling at the humour of Talon’s resident hacker, a player of many pranks on the Talon lackeys. 

Not the most practical use for Dr. de Kuiper’s work, although actually finding uses for his creations was almost always out of the question.

 

Moira picked out the folders and small drive, turning back to her desk. She quickly skimmed through one folder marked ‘Nanomachine Experimentation’, discarding it when it did not reveal any new ideas to be explored, despite it giving her some memories of Reyes' first exposure to her scientific breakthrough.

 

The second, unlabelled folder was far more battered than the first, the surface scratched and edges frayed, with an old stain adorning the front cover. With an upturned nose, Moira opened the folder at an arm’s length and peered at the pages contained within.

 

For a second, she hesitated, confused as to why she recognized the long cursive handwriting and intricate drawings of machines. Unconsciously she turned the page and was met with an unfortunately familiar face, the long spiked brown hair, the large hazel eyes, the pair of helix ear piercings. The Overwatch poster-girl herself.

 

Moira’s lips curled into a snarl. This pest had been a thorn in her side too long. She was too nosy for her own good, once nearly stumbling into the Blackwatch laboratories, only stopped when Reyes appeared to apprehend her. Then there was the Slipstream and Overwatch’s attempt to rescue her, starving the Blackwatch budget as every scientist in the world wanted to be the first to crack the mysteries of her condition.

 

But they were all too close-minded to see the true reach of their work, bound by the considerations for the English twerp. Oxton’s safety limited the potential of the technology. Reyes had requested Moira’s help in restoring the girl to a more physical state, but her devices failed where the Gorilla’s had not. 

 

Moira sighed, stabling herself, and turned her attention to the flash drive. Plugging the device into a slot on her desk, she took note of a number of files relating to the Slipstream project, including the schematics for the original device inside the plane itself, the containment chamber Lena Oxton was finally stabilised in, and a personal device she recognized as being worn by the girl to this day. A tingling sensation traveled down her spine, followed by a nagging, intriguing sense that this was her next breakthrough, the next area to study and refine, unshackled by the concerns for a single human.

 

Moira leaned back, deep in thought. The idea of using her enemy's research was finally giving her an opportunity for a new endeavour she couldn’t pass up on. She grinned widely, a new fire present in her eyes.

 

Leaning forward, she pressed another button on her desk and spoke into the air. 

 

"I would like to organise a meeting with Dr. de Kuiper to discuss a new project that I will require his expertise in," She said, pausing. "And send someone to return this box to Sombra."

 

Truly energised for the first time in weeks, she slid the lid back onto the box.