Vanity Fair


amato_icon.gif ethan_icon.gif madeline_icon.gif

Scene Title Vanity Fair
Synopsis While Amato and Madeline casually speak outside the Cathedral of St. John, Ethan storms in with news.
Date October 22, 2008

Morningside Heights

Morningside Heights was and is still known for its high density of educational institutions. Most of the neighborhood is owned by Columbia University; the rest is shared with Barnard College, the Manhattan School of Music, the Teachers College, Columbia Greenhouse nursery school, and a variety of religious seminaries.

In addition to places like the Cathedral of St. John the Divine and Morningside Park, the neighborhood boasts a variety of restaurants and clubs, excellent bookstores, and Mondel Chocolates, selling handmade chocolate candies even today.

Before the bomb, Morningside Heights was dominated by students. That is still the case today, but their majority is now far smaller — with Morningside being one of the neighborhoods least affected by the explosion, it has become a very popular place to live. Housing is extremely expensive, but people are willing to pay through the nose for a place they know is safe and sound — at least in structural terms. Population density is high; like everywhere else in the city, so is crime, although Morningside's biggest problems are theft and embezzlement. Along with the consequences of college parties and/or pranks.

Morningside Heights. Home of lovely cathedrals…and really good stores. Along with college students, and things of that sort. At the moment, Madeline is passing near the Cathedral. She's got a small digital camera at hand and is snapping a couple shots, looking very much the tourist. A bag that's really neither small enough nor stylish enough to be a purse is at her hip, the strap slung across her body.

Out of the Cathedral doors and down to the sidewalk comes a tall, thin figure dressed in nearly all black, save for a crimson red scarf around his neck. He could be one of the more eccentric residence of this area, but he is definitely not a college student. If the rosary he tucks into the pocket of his long wool coat is any clue, it would lean toward him being somewhat affiliated with the church he has just exited. No, no tourist here. Noting Madeline, Amato narrows his eyes in contemplation for a moment before turning to look back at what she's photographing. "The ones in Europe are far more beautiful," he comments idly, his accent being distinctly from the other side of the pond, but hard to place outside of that.

She smiles. Heck, she'll snap a picture of him, too, as he approaches. "Never been to Europe. I'm still getting myself settled into New York. And it's nice to see. Kinda blows the mind how much time it must have taken to put that thing together."

"Not only time, but love and care." Amato frowns as his picture is snapped, but then an idea comes to mind. "I could take one of you in front of it? Something to send back to someone." He smiles at the obviously stellar idea in an effort to make it look more appealing.

The woman seems to think about it. "Sure." she offers. A priest isn't likely to go running off with her camera, after all. "Do you know how to work it?" She displays the camera for him, in case he needs tips and pointers. Like many people, there's that vague assumption that religious types are somehow behind the times.

Digital cameras are pretty simple, especially when there are little pictures next to the various buttons. "I think I can figure it out well enough to take a simple picture." He takes it with a nod, then steps back in order to let the young woman take her position. In the mean time, once the camera's screen is blocked from her line of sight, he does his best to look as though he is trying to figure out the camera's settings in order to snap a good photo, or just marveling at the technology. In reality, Amato's thin, gloved fingers find the playback and delete buttons. Bye-bye, possible incriminating evidence.

She moves to take her position on the walkway towards the main door, and smiles pleasantly. "Cheese!" Okay, so it's a bit corny, but hey. What else do you do when someone is taking a picture?

Victorious, Amato can't help but smile back at the display as he snaps the picture, the camera making the needless shutter sound to satisfy the subconscious. "There you are," he says as he steps closer, eyeing the shot. It is a cheesy one, but she is a tourist. "I'm glad to have been a help. Though if you go inside, I don't believe they'll let you take so many. It is a House of God."

She walks up, and smiles, as she reaches out to take her camera. "Oh, I don't mind. There's plenty of things to see around here. Usually I'm more interested in people than buildings anyway. But how often do you get a chance to take a picture of a cathedral?"

"There are some who would argue that everywhere you look, you see a cathedral of God's own craftsmanship. The clouds are its ceiling, the trees its pillars. The brightly colored and vastly diverse animals the living subjects of its stained glass, tapestries, and sculptures." Amato continues to smile softly as he returns the camera and slips his gloved hands into his pockets. "One only need look that certain way."

At this time, Amato's old piece of crap cellphone begins to ring. Or vibrate, or whatever setting he has it on. Hopefully he can figure it out enough to answer it. On the other end of the phone is the Wolf. Rumbling through the city in his car, Ethan seems intent on finding someone. And that someone is not answering their shitty phone yet! Turning a corner the black Lincoln Town and Country just happens to be on the same street that Amato and Madline are on. Ring ring.

Madeline smiles. "That sounds…very artistic, Father." Yep, she's assumed Amato is a priest. "I have to confess that I'm not a particularly religious sort of woman, though. I—" And then the cell phone rings. "You're ringing." There's almost a little tone of surprise. Priests use cell phones?

But Amato isn't a priest, and he only carries a cell phone because his…employer requires him to do so. "If you'll excuse me, I'm terribly sorry." He turns slightly away from her as he lifts the piece of technology, which is outdated by about four years, from his inside coat pocket to his ear. Ethan is calling, and God only knows what about. "Father Cassius, speaking."

And as soon as the phone is answered, Father Cassius is greeted by a barrage on the other line. "Mother, Fucker! Where the fuck are you?!" Comes the shout into the phone. But just then as if destiny was smiling down upon the Wolf he slams on the brakes. Could it be? That puff there with the blonde hair next to the young woman? Yes, yes it is! The car almost roars into a parallel parking place and before you know it the phone is shut. Slipping it into his coat pocket, Ethan reaches across to the passenger seat and picks up a small duffle bag.

The door pops open and popping out is Ethan, straightening his jacket and giving a glare to the world that dares it to piss him off, he tosses the duffle strap over his shoulder and slams the door behind him. Bloop bleep! Goes the car as it locks itself, and the keys go in the pocket. Ethan storms across the street to where Amato and Madeline are. Nevermind the cars going across the street, they will get out of the way if they know what's good for them.

Madeline certainly has no way to know about Amato's lack of ordainment…especially when he answers the way he does. The bellow of cursing on the other end is loud enough that she can hear just a bit. Who talks to a priest like that? Even she wouldn't talk to a priest like that, and there's not a lot she wouldn't do. She looks over then as there's someone storming across the street towards them. A bit of a nervous look, and she takes a half-step back. Her hand starts to raise at her side, but she doesn't act…yet.

Leave it to Ethan to ruin a perfectly good cover crafted by Amato on the fly. Frowning, Amato forgets the girl for a moment and pockets the phone before he turns his back on her to face the man braving the traffic. His expression is an easy one to read: You idiot. "Elijah," he says once Ethan is close enough, and loud enough for the girl behind him to hear. "You mustn't go without those pills if you're planning on being outside of the home. It isn't fair to the ears of the populous." Translation? Quit being an flagrant asshole or you'll get us both killed.

His features soften slowly, and a smile is given to Amato. Looking over to the girl, Ethan gives another glance back to Amato. "Pardon me, Father." The words are said in a thick French accent. He raises his hands up to his head as if angry that he can't think of what he's going to say next, he's flustered! Looking to Madeline, "«Do you speak French, miss?»" Comes the words in French, though he gives himself a cute little bonk to the forehead. "Forgive me, do you speak french, miss? I apologize, but I must speak with the Father, it is an urgent matter about the.. home." States the apparent French 'Elijah'.

Ethan's query in French draws only a confused look from Madeline, who speaks three languages. English, Canadian, and Australian. The brunette frowns just a little, since he's gone from giving the Death Glare to being Mr. McNice in the span of crossing the street. But she nods once, slowly. "Sure. I had more pictures to take anyhow. It was nice talking to you, Father." Her look to Amato is slightly concerned, and slightly inquisitive. Translation? Is this someone you actually want to talk to?

Amato turns to Madeline with an apologetic smile, lifting his hands to clasp them in front of him. He nods, then nearly bends at the waist as he shakes his head, that smile growing. "Thank you so much, my dear. I apologize if you were startled. Please, enjoy the city." Glancing back to Ethan, Amato sighs in an effort to steal himself. "«What has you so worked up?»" he asks in French, his tone and expression obviously concerned, if not all-out worried.

Ethan gives a huge smile, and if Madeline were to look back and see them talking, she would see Ethan talking in a warm tone with a big grin. As if he was happy about the news he is giving Amato. "«Amato, when you hit me with the newspaper the other night, that was because I misbehaved, correct? Well, as soon as this woman turns the corner, I am going to beat the hell out of you with a Vanity Fair magazine and a Maternity and Style Magazine. Don't fucking ask why I have those two, just know that you have gone and fucked it up royally my good friend.»" He pauses, gives another smile with a lot of teeth and raises his hand to put it on his compatriots shoulder. "«Not only does Gillian Childs live in the building, and she could see you, see me, and ruin everything guess who else lives in that building. Guess who else is your fucking neighbor?»" Ethan pauses, takes a step back and raises his hands and giving a cute face as if asking a trivial question.

Since the two seem to be in good spirits, and chattering on in Foreignese, Madeline takes the opportunity to give a last nod to the good Father, and then heads off, walking down the sidewalk further in her picture-taking escapade, and out of the area.

Hearing this news from Munin was enough, but more of the same time coming from Ethan isn't at all welcome. "«I told you I picked the location due to it being close to the warehouse,»" he answers in a calmer, reserved tone. Someone isn't nearly as excited. "«And no one has cause to send me post, so I have no reason to go near the post boxes. But since you are obviously so eager to point out some previous error, please. Enlighten me.»"

"«Oh. No reason. Well, turns out Amato it's a small fuckin' world. Your best friend Felix fucking Ivanov lives down the hall."» That oughtta get him, Ethan straightens his jacket as he unzips the duffle on his shoulder. Reaching in he produces a newspaper, folding it up he looks to Amato. "«The guy who shot you, right? The guy trying to find out about our boss?»" A thwak is sent out to Amato's arm with Ethan's newspaper. Ethan will always pay you back, sometimes, it just takes a while.

Stunned and offended at both the admonishment and news, Amato can't help but cringe when hit, and he keeps his arms slightly raised in defense even as he takes a step away from the larger and more formidable man. "«So I move. I take Munin with me, and go someplace safer. It is easily fixed. If I did not know he lived there, what are the chances he knows I live there?»"

Tucking the newspaper back in the duffle, Ethan zips it back up. "«Munin can come stay with me while you get your fuckin' act together.»" Ethan says powerfully, he's upset at this, that is very apparent. He just put in a new gun too! "«I don't know, Amato. Hopefully he's as stupid as you and doesn't pay attention. Does he know your name? Fuck.»" Ethan looks towards the sky and cracks his neck slowly. "«I'll have to blow up the whole building.»" Whether he's kidding or not, is left unsaid.

Amato is silent for a moment, but a grin slowly cracks his blank stare. A snort, followed by a chuckle which grows steadily into a full-bellied laugh erupts from the Italian before he begins to move down the street to the crosswalk. "«My name, Ethan?»" He finally chokes out, wiping a tear away with one leather-clad finger. "«Do you really think that lowly of me?»"

And the two stride off into the sunset, laughing together.

October 22nd: Unusual Pizza Delivery
Previously in this storyline…

Next in this storyline…

October 22nd: Laundry Day
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