Narrowing The List


abby2_icon.gif cardinal_icon.gif xiulan_icon.gif

Scene Title Narrowing The List
Synopsis Discussions ensue about who might be the perpetrator of the puppeted groping.
Date April 12, 2009

Confucius Plaza - Xiulan's Apartment

To say this apartment is on the smaller side would be an understatement at best. Even so, the furniture has been artistically arranged to make the most of a very tight space. The walls have been hung with colorful panels of Chinese silk, tightly woven gold cord draped to create a temple-like appeal. In the center of the room an ornately woven has been piled high with pillows, the plush surfaces arranged in a semi-circle around a low, round coffee table. Along the far wall, a bookshelf plays host to numerous art books and supplies, an easel with a painting in progress standing slightly to the left. On the northern face of the main room an archway leads into a narrow kitchen. Bunches of dried herbs can be seen hanging as one peers inside. To the left of the kitchen, a narrow hallway leads to the bedroom and bath, the walls adorned with hung panels of silk like the living room.

Fortunately for the girls, the Flying Dragons had responded relatively quickly to Xiulan's call. As predicted, the tattooed Chinese gang member had looked a little on the silly side riding Lazarus back to Xiulan's apartment. And, just as predictably, there had been a bit of ribbing over Xiulan having a broken rib. With the girls safetly esconced in Xiulan's apartment, the guys had taken off, claiming business, but pointedly avoiding mentioning what kind of business with Abby being present.

So it is hours later, with Xiulan showered, her ribs wrapped and Abby safely settled on the couch with a afghan and some tea, that Xiulan finally gets around to asking what, exactly, happened. "Don't get me wrong, Abby. I -know- you didn't really try to hit me, but…. What happened?" Cause frankly, she's never seen anything like that.

"Like my hand had a mind of it's own" Abigail answers. She's still embarrassed that it happened. Embarrassed at the way she froze up outside the apartment buildings when she realized where it was that Xiulan actually lived. "I don't do that sort of thing. Grab my own chest. I was stretching my arm and then I was just trying to lower my hand and it's like my hand curled into a fist and I was hitting you. I'd never do it Xiulan. I don't even like killing spiders" The xanax has long since taken over and through her system, the upped dose and the redhead is calmer for haven taken a nap Xiulan was tending to herself.

"I know that you wouldn't do anything like that Abigail," Xiulan assures. "All I can figure is that someone in the park decided to have a bit of fun at our expense." Shifting on the couch stirs a faint wince to tracing over Xiulan's features, a sigh spilling past her lips as she finally manages to get a sip of hot tea. "I mean, pardon my language, but there really are assholes in the world." Hopefully, it was just someone being a smart ass. Resting her cup of tea on the arm of the couch, she wrinkles her nose faintly, her lips twisting in a mild grimace. "Whatever the case, we are -not- going to let this interfere with you learning martial arts," Xiulan adds.

"You think it was the .. nerd?" It's not spoken derogatorily, more as he called himself. "Canaan. For .. hurting him?" She sips her own tea. "I heale dhim after, he'd have been fine" Abigail's casting her mind back. "Hotdog guy? There was that little girl.."

"It could have been any one of them," Xiulan admits. "Heck, there was a Mime, too. They get picked on /all/ the time, it could have been a craxy mime out for vengeance." Well, probably not, but still. "Canaan seems most likely, to me, but he didn't strike me as the sort. The hotdog guy?" Canting her head, Xiulan considers that for a moment before rolling her shoulders in a shrug. "Why though? I mean, seriously, he was way too into that hotdog to even notice us, don't you think?" The little girl is considered for a moment, as well before Xiulan shudders and shakes her head. "I refuse to even consider the Children of the Corn girl, Abby."

"Children of the corn?" Pop culture is not Abby's forte. "He was staring at us. A lot" Abby murmurs. "Mime's. Evolved mine. Maybe. But there's so many people in the park" Abby points out and sighs. "I can fix you now. I'm better I can take most of it away and leave just a little so that the Dragons don't suspect."

Xiulan's phone rings.

"Two girls wrestling in the park? Of course he was watching us, Abby. Heck, we're cute, right?" Flashing Abby a wink, Xiulan is about to say more when her phone rings. "One second." Pause as she picks up the phone. "Hello?" And then. "You've seriously never seen Children of the Corn?"

"I didn't even know what you mean by Crane Stance" Someone needs to inform Xiulan where Abby was raised. SHe watches her on the phone though, non-plussed by not knowing who or what the children of the corn are.

On the other end of the phone, there's a pause, before Richard allows in rather dry tones, "…I've seen Children of the Corn, yes. At least the modern remake. Tell me you didn't call me -just- because of that, Xiu."

"Richard!" Pausing a beat, Xiulan laughs, then winces and whimpers in response to the shooting pain in her ribs. "Ow. No. I didn't call to ask you about movies. Um. Can you come over, someone was dicking with me and Abby in the park." Pausing another beat, Xiulan covers the phone and asides to Abby. "We're going to have movie night. Seriously, you need to see these movies." Uncovering the phone, she sighs, pressing one hand against her ribs and adds. "Someone decided to make Abby… um… grab herself and then break my ribs."

Here comes the red cheeks again and the guilt soaking into the redhead's features at the words across the phone.

"…what?" Cardinal has, clearly just woken up. He doesn't sound entirely awake just yet. "Made her what? Break your what?" A pause. "Did she fix 'em at least?"

"Ribs, yes." Pausing a beat, Xiulan points at Abby and adds. "Stop it, no guilt." Turning her attention back to the phone, she sighs and adds. "Not yet, she's been too freaked out to be able to focus. It's all good, though, I taped them up."

All good. Taped them up. As if broken ribs are nothing. It's hard to stop feeling guilty on demand, so it's not going to happen right away and likely won't. In the end, it was still Abigail's - her hand, that did it.

A sigh whispers over the line, "Alright, alright. I'll come over. Where're you at? Your place, or Abigail's?"

"My place, Abby couldn't drive." Don't ask, Dragon on a scooter, it's all bad. "I appreciate it, Richard. See you in a bit." Glancing over at Abby, she reaches out and lightly pats the redhead's shoulder offering quietly. "Richard's on his way, all right?"

'Lassie" Abby answers back. Only AFTER the phone has been hung up. "Abby's in trouble, Abby's in trouble, down a well" Right now, she feels terrible. like some eternal screw up incapable of operating day to day. Thank you Logan. Thank you life. Thank you herself.

"Hey, he's got Lassie tattooed on his thigh," Xiulan confides with a wink. "Mind you, it's in Chinese, but still. Actually, I wonder if he's even noticed that, yet?" Hopefully, since it'll likely be gone by later this evening. "Feh, I'll just have to get his pants off to make it permanent." Yes, TMI, but still, she's trying to make Abby laugh. She does, however, turn a bit more serious as she notes, "You should be happy, Abby. Very few people have someone they can count on to help them like Richard does with you."

"I have a lot of friends who can do that. But they're busy, with stuff" Big stuff. bigger than her being controlled in the park. "He.. doesn't know you did it? When did you do it?!" Abby's peering over at Xiulan, nursing her tea, curled up with not an inch of her showing out from under the afghan.

"When I was sitting in his lap," Xiulan confides with a wink. "It'll fade, though. It was really just me being a brat." Sighing, she shifts her weight, easing into a more comfortable position on the couch and reaching for her tea. "Busy with stuff…" Hrumph. "I don't know, Abby, I think helping your friends is just as important, if not more so then anything else. Mind you, my opinion is just that, my opinion, so. Still, when someone is dicking around with the local healer? A smart person makes /certain/ they alright before going on with business."

"They're busy" Abby emphasizes's. "They got in touch. There's one I always call, but he's not back yet. They do watch out. They pass me information about shady people and who to avoid. I understand they are busy right now. They know I'm okay right now" Then she drops down to a murmur. "They came and saved me from Staten Island Xiulan. When they didn't even have to"

"Alright," Xiulan agrees readily enough. Sipping her tea, she watches Abby over the rim of the cup, her expression hard to read. "At any rate, Richard will be here soon and we can go from there. Seriously though? I think this was all just… random. It didn't feel preplanned or particularly menacing to me." Course, maybe getting her ribs broken isn't that unique an experience for Xiulan. "I would like to check out that Canaan guy, though."

"Your not the only one going to be looking into Canaan" Abigail answers into her tea. She's content to settle in for some quiet time, though she eyes Xiulan again. "Can I fix you yet? Or are you really wanting that broken rib?"

A shadow spills beneath the door, sliding into the room, though it remains quiet for the time being as it creeps beneath the coffee table to listen in.

"It isn't a matter of /wanting/ a broken rib," Xiulan admits. "I don't want to risk drawing the Dragon's attention you way by suddenly not having a broken rib." Grimacing mildly, Xiulan shakes her head, leaning forward carefully to set the tea cup on the coffee table. "Go ahead and heal it, but at least leave a bruise." No one should try to poke at her, unless word gets out to Doctor Cong.

"I can take most of it away. You'll just have to tell me, and I'll have to pay attention, to when there's less to heal" Abby proffers, reaching out a hand. "I can leave something, enough that they won't suspect" Hopefully. Please dear lord let them not.

"Alright," Xiulan agrees. Shifting on the couch, she presents the injured rib toward Abby while drawing the tanktop up to expose the black and blue flesh over the ribs. All in all the injury -looks- a whole lot worse then it actually is, particularly with the vivid green corona around the quickly forming bruise. "And don't worry, Abby. I have no intention of offering to show any of the Dragons my ribcage."

oh, oh, Abby did a number on the other woman and she places a gentle palm on the injury. One quickly murmured prayer later and the healing flowing at it's general flow, the redhead's working to heal the injury enough that there's still a bruise but the worst of the breaking is repaired. The green around the edges fades, the darker center, the point of impact becoming less vibrant. Muscles soothing, and the bone itself re-knitting where it was injured. Her fingers splayed wide, head tilted at an angle, she stops when it could be judged that the just the ribs were bruises maybe close to cracking. Leaving still some form of mottled bruising when she pulls her hand away.

"Just take the shirt off all the way," a voice stirs, amused, from the shadows, "And then Abigail can to, and — wait, wait, I need to get a video camera first."

Xiulan watches the process intently, her expression focused as the bruises fade and the pain pretty much vanishes. "It's a shame people can't see their way past their own fear to let you help them." Frowning faintly, dark eyes flick up Abby's face, Xiu's head canting faintly to oneside. "Does it hu-" Richard. Pursing her lips, Xiulan casts a -look- at the shadows, amusement shining in her dark eyed gaze. "You're rotten, Richard. You know that, I hope?" Course, her express belays her words, making more then clear that she's pleased he is here.

"I help at the hospital. In the ICU. I should check in and see if they have someone for me. The police have me on retainer and make me take pay for it. Not everyone looks away. If.. I were like another friend, if I took money for what I did, then… Then i'd never have an issue with making sure I have gas money, and rent. But I don't. because His gift shouldn't come with a price tag" Richard? Abby glances to all the dark spots that might be a tad darker till they alight under the coffee table. "Richard!"

"I don't think He gave me this gift, personally," the shadow observes rather dryly, spilling up the side of the sofa to spread across it—and Richard Cardinal pushes out of it, the darkness stretching as he emerges, peeling away until he reforms into a human shape, sprawled on the end of the couch. A hand lifts to adjust his shades, and he exhales a faint chuckle, "And I know I'm rotten."

"Definitely rotten," Xiulan repeats as she nudges Richards thigh with one knee. "Sexy beast." Relaxing visibly, Xiu lowers her tank top over the remaining bruise, a sigh of relief spilling past her lips as she curls more comfortably into the arm of the couch. It's the discussion of 'He' that has her slightly confused, her head giving a faint shake. "Who?" No, she isn't getting the reference, that much is clear.

"God" Abigail answers. She's not going to argue whether god gave Cardinal his gift or not. just glances over to him to make sure he's okay. 'They got a hold of me. I didn't get told what happened but there were bullets involved" Just so that he's not worrying about his own companions. Back under the afghan she retreats though, after helping Xiulan.

"I've heard a little bit," admits Cardinal with a slow shake of his head, "I'm starting to think — well, anyway. You all right?" A look between the two, one arm draping over the back of the couch as Xiulan nudges her knee to his, both brows leaping upwards, "What happened, exactly?"

"We're not really sure," Xiulan admits. "It could have just been spontaneous malice, or something more deliberate." It is really hard to say. She does, however, roll to her feet, gathering up her tea cup as she does so. "You want a beer?" Regardless of his answer, she pads into the kitchen, calling back over her shoulder. "Abby, tea?"

"I'm okay" Abby answers, adjusting under the blanket, knee's to the side, feet tucked under. "She was teaching me horse stance and then we stopped and as I was stretch my arm I suddenly grabbed my.. chest. and then I pulled my hand away and I.. punched Xiulan"

"I'll take a beer," Cardinal admits, before turning his head towards Abby with a slightly furrowed brow as she speaks. One hand lifts up to scratch at the nape of his neck, as he asks, "Well, why'd you do that for?"

From the kitchen, the sound of the fridge opening closing can be heard. A few moments later, Xiulan reappears with a bottle Chinese beer in one hand and a teacup in the other. "It wasn't on purpose," she informs Richard as she passes him the bottle of beer. "Stay calm," she murmurs to Abby as she returns to her spot on the couch.

"I didn't do it!" Stay calm. "It wasn't me" Mumbled. "I don't hurt people on purpose"

"So… what, you were, like, mind-controlled or something?" A bemused look from one to the other, Richard's brow furrowing behind the edge of his shades. The bottle's taken into hand, and he frowns, "That's… odd. I mean, you'd think if someone could do that and were after you they'd — I don't know — do something more impressive?"

"Right?" Xiulan had thought the same thing. It could have been /so/ much worse then it was. "But yeah, it wasn't /Abby/ hitting me or groping herself." At least, she has opted to believe that it wasn't Abby. "Personally, I think it was someone just amusing themselves, but you never know. There was one guy, Canaan, who helped me show Abby a throw. He -did- land a little hard when she threw him and made a hasty retreat, but…" But she's not sure it was him. Frankly, things are starting to point that way, though.

Yeah. This day can frankly be written off. "Just my hand. My arm. I'm going to give his name to Elisabeth. See if she can figure out who he is and no, I don't grope myself. Thank you very much" Abby's not in the tears that she was easiler, but she's decidedly unhappy with teh days turnout and that she hurt Xiulan to the degree that she did.

"What," Richard looks at Abby for a moment, blinking, "You mean you don't even— " A pause, and he clears his throat, "Right, well. Maybe it was this guy, maybe not, I don't know. Seems like there wasn't any serious damage to either of you, though. Were you followed?"

"If they were intending to follow us, the Flying Dragons showing up probably dissuaded them from that." Wrinkling her nose, Xiulan gives a slow shake of her head before taking a sip of her tea. "I am pretty sure that it was nothing more then someone dicking around, but just to be safe, we called you." Besides, someone has to make sure that Abby gets home safely. "And, if anything else similar happens, we've at least gotten word out that it's possible."

"I don't even…" Abby looks confused again before it dawns on the woman. "no. I don't" End of that train of conversation. Go there further at your own risk Richard Cardinal. "Someone being a jerk. I think it might be Canaan. I did almost hurt him. And he did run off right after" There's a deep breath, let out as a sigh. "I'm so good at making new friends"

"Canaan? Who'd name their kid that?" The bottle of beer's finally pried open, and Cardinal brings it to his lips to take a hard swallow thereof— gesturing with it vaguely, "Well, no harm, no foul, alright? I think we can relax."

"No harm, now," Xiulan admits. "There was quite a bit of harm earlier." Course, she can't resist flashing a smile at Abby and winking. "You pack a heck of a punch, Abby. I can't wait to see how you do when we get to breaking boards."

"What does breaking boards have to do with learning to keep a person off me?" and nope, no harm now though she does make a muffled barking sound as she sips at the cold remnants of her tea, a sideways look at Cardinal.

"I think that human bone," Cardinal observes mildly, "Breaks more easily than wood. So if you can break a board, you can break a man's pelvis." Then he brings the beer back up, eyes closing as he takes a swig.

"And come on, think of the tips you'll get using that as a bar trick, Abby." Flashing the healer a wink, Xiulan waggles her brows before settling in to sip her tea.

"I get better tips if I just make them all line up and pour vodka right into their mouths" Abigail points out. "Or if I wore lower cut jeans and a push up bra" The dregs of her tea are swallowed and the cup put down. "I should head home. Brian's going to be there tonight"

"Remind him to beef security up," Cardinal observes with a tight shake of his head, "I'm worried about what might happen to the Lighthouse if things get any worse on Staten."

"Brian?" Color Xiulan surprised, Abby has a boyfriend? "Well, are you going to be alright getting home?" Concerned? Yes, she's concerned, it's been a trying day after all. She does, however, roll to her feet, snagging Abby's cup and making an attempt to give the healer a hug before padding into the kitchen. "We're all good, right, Abigail?" Richard's statement perks her interest, but Xiulan'll wait to start asking him questions about that.

"A copy of Brian, which is actually.. still Brian, has been staying with me since I came back. I started trying to go every second night without him there. Start to function on my own at night" Not. Dating. Not. Pregnant. Abby nods about the security. "I'll tell him you passed that on. Wouldn't surprise me if he hasn't already. He won't let me go over there when they were attacked. he brought everyone over here instead" The blanket that's been around her is folded neatly and placed where she was. "I think, I'll be good. I'm better now Xiulan. I'm not the mess that I was. But I'll call when I get home to let you know I made it"

"He's a replicator," Cardinal explains, pushing himself up to his feet with a grunt of breath as he straightens, "He can make, ah, more of himself. He's kind of a doof, but he's a good guy - runs an orphanage over on Staten, the Lighthouse." He offers over a faint, reassuring smile to Abby, "You need an escort, or?"

"I would appreciate that," Xiulan admits. Better safe then sorry, after all. Replicator… "Wow, I used to think my ability was cool." Flashing Richard a wry smile, Xiulan shakes her head and pads into the kitchen, setting the cups in the sink and starting the water to running. Fortunately, she can still see the pair over the counter. "Richard would make sure you got back safely, Abby." It's probably not a bad idea, at all.

"Wouldn't be the first time you hitched a ride" Which means, if it makes you all feel better, sure. "He's a good doof. With a hive mind. If he'd been with me that night, I wouldn't have been taken" The redhead sets about to gathering her things. "I'll call Xiulan. Set up a time for our next lesson. Without the .. groping"

"That's what I said," Richard allows with a shake of his head, setting the bottle down on the table and straightening, "I'll tag along until you're home safe. Just in case, y'know? Can't hurt."

"Call me so I don't end up worrying all night," Xiulan reminds the pair. "Thank you," she adds. "For coming out so quickly, Richard. I appreciate it. And you," is added with a wry smile for Abby. "Drive safe."

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