A Guide To Biker Slang


caspian_icon.gif devi_icon.gif

Scene Title A guide to Biker Slang
Synopsis Caspian and Devi somehow work out a relationship.
Date June 22, 2019


Description of location, if any.

It's been a few days since Devi and Caspian’s sleepover - at least that's what Caspian has been referring to it as.

The morning after was spent in quiet conversation, walking through the mostly deserted streets of the Safe Zone to the promised breakfast at his place. Surprisingly, it didn't take long for them to reach his building from hers and with the appropriate fiddling with a hidden keypad, she was allowed access to his home.

A two story with a basement and an attached building on the side, surrounded by strong fences, Caspian was one of the lucky ones that managed to get real estate in the city to act as a home base, office, and garage. “It's not much, but it's mine.” He said the first time she visited, unlocking the door and standing aside to allow Devi entry. The grand tour was given and after, he headed to the kitchen to start a breakfast of tacos with egg, potato, cheese, and bacon. A totally unhealthy breakfast, to be sure, but they already worked up an appetite walking over.

And this started to become a regular thing, for them. Not every day, but often enough to where it could be considered a regular thing. Devi, at some point during the day, sometime during the week, would get a call on her office line from a familiar number and, when she answered or checked her mail, the same message was there. “Hey Devi. It’s Caspian.” He always introduced himself, even though she surely knew his voice by now. “Just wondering if you were up for breakfast tomorrow?” And if she was, she'd make her way to his place either the evening before or the morning of and they'd just spend time together. The story, if it ever came out, was supposed to be that they fucked like minks, but honestly, it was enough for him just to spend time with someone else.

It's a little before going home time when Devi’s office phone rings and, on the other end, is Caspian. “Hey Devi. It's Caspian.” He goes quiet for a second, and she can almost see his smile beaming through the phone. “Up for breakfast?”

“What’s on the menu?” It’s the same remark whether she’s answered the call or had previously gotten his message and he’s just answered the door. It’s always delivered in the same suggestive tone - her husky flirtation with a bit of innocent mirth to provide enough ambiguity so as to be not too evocative.

His response is always cordial - a food type - and, regardless, Devi always shows. Devi’s Mantis is visible in the backdrop before the door closes behind her and she tosses her leather jacket onto the arm of a sofa. Her days at the office have gotten shorter, her arrival at Capsian’s abode earlier, and there’s a rigidity in her shoulders that she tries to shed alongside the jacket. It never lasts long, mind - melting away under the warmth of Caspian’s smile. “Heya, Handsome.”

“Hey there yourself.” Caspian is dressed comfortably for the evening, already freshly showered from his day at ‘the office’ which consisted of pulling cable and repairing air conditioners. With summer starting up, having access to anything that could make the temperature go down from the highest of highs to something a little more comfortable was a godsend. Truth be told, Caspian made the vast majority of his trading stock from bartering his skills at repairing air conditioners and making them work in places they normally shouldn’t. As a consequence, when he opens the door to invite Devi in, it’s to the cool comfort of his house, a good ten degrees cooler than outside with room to spare.

The smell of dinner cooking can be picked up, too. On the off chance that Devi was coming by, Caspian stopped by the market for a few things - like a whole chicken, some onions, some potatoes and carrots, a small handful of mushrooms. All put together in the roaster in the gas oven, dusted with salt and pepper, dinner will be ready after a little while. Set it and forget it is a mantra with Caspian and his cooking. Hands off to let the stove and the cookware do their thing over some arbitrary amount of time.

He smacks the button next to the door, the outside gate rumbling closed on its tracks to keep the Mantis safe in its parking spot and closes the door behind her, walking in bare feet to the kitchen, the refrigerator thumping as he opens and closes it, returning a moment later with a pair of beers in brown bottles. “Some guy at Yamagato needed some work done. Got paid plus a case of this Yuengling stuff.” He offers her a bottle, the cap already removed. “It’s not that bad.”

Not that bad, when beer is involved, means cold and there, in Caspian’s view.

“Long day at the office?”

“They seem to be getting longer and longer.” When he returns, Devi is perched with her rump on the edge of the sofa’s arm, carefully balanced unlacing a second boot. She peels it off, revealing more frayed tears in her dark denim jeans, and places it beside the first. Tattooed fingers brush along Caspian’s as she takes one of the beers with a grateful, albeit quiet, sigh. She takes a sip and pulls the bottle away to consider the label before giving an inconclusive shrug and going back for more.

Licking a soft sheen at her lips when the bottle lowers anew, she smiles up at Caspian. “What ‘bout you, hm? Work. How is it? Was it what you always expected you’d do, hm?” A little twist of her hips lets Devi slip off the edge of the sofa’s arm and flop down properly onto a cushion. She gives the empty space beside her an instructive, inviting pat before resting her arm along the back of the couch.

Leaning back into the kitchen, Caspian snags an old fashioned egg timer - the kind that clicks the seconds away and dings when time has expired - and places it on the chair next to the entrance to the kitchen. Out of the way of the conversation in general, but with enough presence so they’ll know when dinner is ready. Thusly prepared with a beer and dinner sorted, he makes his way across the clean floor on bare feet and sinks down on the couch next to Devi once he's moved her boots next to their spot by the door. He clinks his bottle against hers lightly, taking a swallow and savoring the flavor for a bit. “Hmm. Sweet and bitter.” Another testing swallow. “Not bad for being free.”

Caspian’s bottle is placed on the coffee table, the man settling into the corner of the couch, patting his lap as an invitation for Devi to put her feet up and, if she doesn't, he reaches down to get them. “Work is good.” He says after a second, his hands gentle on her feet. “Constant. I've got a class starting Monday at the market for some apprentices to hopefully take some of the load off. I'm hopefully going to get the IBEM to set up a chapter here. It's easy for guys to get taken advantage of, and a union will help a lot with that.”

Caspian works his thumbs carefully into the arches of Devi’s feet, moving just a little bit closer so the outside of his hip is resting against the backs of her denim-covered legs. “Everything changed so much. Before the war started, I was in college. Just getting a general studies degree and really hadn’t chosen a degree. The path I was on probably had me ending up in Seattle or Denver or Austin somewhere, working for a company doing IT work.”

Caspian looks around the small home. “I honestly can't say that I saw myself ending up here, like this. I could think of a lot worse places to be. I'm thankful it's worked out, more or less. I've got a safe home, food, good work with a purpose.” Caspian pats your bare feet. “And the scenery isn't half bad, either, what with the curves and the colors and all.” Referring to Devi’s curves and ink. “What about you? If the war never happened, any clue where you might have ended up?”

Certainly not here, with her. It’s a pleasant surprise.

“You won’t hear any complaints from me.” That is her assessment of the brew after lowering the bottle from another sip. Devi raises a penciled brow at his lap pat, but when it comes to him reaching down and taking up her long legs she obliges casually - such is the learned balance of this whole ‘relationship’ thing. Her dark eyes follow the way his fingers ripple here, or knuckle there. The mention of the union pulls her gaze back to his visage, though, dark eyes blending into the few crescents of dark hair that fall before them. She brushes them absently aside.

“Always looking out for everyone else…” It sounds complimentary despite her neutral, unmoved, ink-accented expression remaining unchanged. She listens to the untraveled trajectory of his life circa 2012, the image of white might have been nearly reflected in the dark surface of eyes. It’s only at the gentle pat and the ambiguous compliment, though, that something more warm melts the hardened edges of her chiseled features. It’s familiar - the sly, mischievous, tilted manner of her smile - but in his presence has grown increasingly less teasing and more clearly more fond.

Sadly, the sincerity of it all is short lived. There’s a moment when the question is lobbed back in her direction that the expression takes on a frozen, stuck quality while gears and cogs grind and smoke behind her dark eyes. It’s a brief thing before she tips her head back and shakes out her long, ebon locks. “I dunno… Possibly a ditch on Staten. Possibly prison. Possibly…” She squints and lowers her chin, bringing her gaze back level with Caspian’s.

She tucks her bottle of beer between her thighs and leans forward, reaching out to run her index finger inside the collar of his shirt, letting the tattooed back of the long digit press fleetingly across his skin. “What is this? What’ve we got goin’ on here, Dreamer, hm? Maybe I’m gettin’ to old to do the dance, or maybe…” Something flickers in her gaze. “Maybe now I jus’ don’t want anyone gettin’ hurt.”

A lot of Caspian's work is for others. Devi might have heard of him in her travels around the zone - fixing things on credit or barter and sometimes for free. Setting up the solar banks on Red Hook market, providing constant power and cooling for the center of the Safe Zone’s cultural and financial life, bringing in businesses, people from the dark areas of the city. And all without his name in lights. “I suppose that it's a flaw, my looking out for everyone else. Trying to do the thing that's right instead of what's the easiest.” He gives a one-shouldered shrug, rolling Devi’s foot back and forth between his palms. “It's not entirely altruistic - there's so much work that, if I don't get some help, I won't ever have a day off to….” Caspian trails off, lost in thought to work on her foot.

This thing he and Devi had - friendship certainly - has started to blossom over the months since they first met on the street and in the weeks since Devi’s encounter with Refrain when he stayed over for the night. He's found himself comfortable with her around, when she was around, and wondering how she was when she wasn't and that was…concerning for him. He's been wondering where this was going for the last few weeks but hadn't brought it up, afraid that even mentioning the possibility would send Devi scattering like a murder of crows startled out of a tree. As she tells her tale about where she could have ended up if a war hadn't ripped the nation in half, that neutral expression of his starts to creep in. This is the one that only shows when he's hearing complaints, and it does well to mask the pangs of worry at those dark images of the future that might have been for Devi. Finally, he does speak. “I'm glad you're here with me. No one, ‘specially a lady like you, doesn't deserve something like that, even with all her faults. Even if they think they do.”

Her touch brings Caspian’s hands to a halt, his left moving up to brush the back of her hand with gentle fingertips, the right still resting on her feet - the one place he was surprised to not see a tattoo. Still, the dark nail polish does fit her modus operandi quite well. Caspian remains close, lips parting briefly, tongue dipping out as he swallows, gaze flicking to her and then out to the apartment proper, coming to rest on the western window with the sun setting in the distance.

He pats her hand gently. “Age don't mean nothin’ to me. Just a number. I mean…” A fortifying swig of beer is taken. “what do you think is going on?” Just like a man - guarded with his feelings, but from the two tales he's told about previous relationships, not without very good reasons for being on guard, even with Devi. One girlfriend blown up and returned from the dead, the other murdered in the commission of a crime. It does something to a guy.

"It is a flaw," Devi interjects flatly in regards to his willingness to help others. It was supposed to come off as playful, clearly, but the edge of truth and … bitterness balances it out to some manner of monotone. She brushes the remark away with the same backhanded gesture that banishes a few dark, long, wavy bangs from before her face.

Caspian's disguised concern and words regarding what 'might have been' for one Biker Queen on Staten Island go without further word. Instead her hand idly drifts from one side of his collar to the other, her gaze level with his. The whole concept of what might have been picks at a scab too fresh, too tender and so she shows no interest in revisiting the past - nostalgic, apocalyptic, or otherwise. She's here, now, with Caspian - trying to stop the 'dance', a tango ‘let’s not name this thing’…

But, he's not ready to sit. Too bad, because she's tired and now she knows this dance can have costs… higher than she’s willing to pay suddenly.

Her hand stills, the backs of her tattooed fingers dipped into the shirt of his collar can feel the beat of his heart behind the plane of warm, toned flesh and muscle. “I mean ta say, this whole skirting ‘the talk’ - it’s all well and good when you don’t give a shit and everyone’s out to lust-and-thrust, but-…” Black lashes fall to her cheeks. She holds her eyes closed and pops one dark brow into a fine arc. “Wait. Age?”

It hasn’t dawned on her that Caspian might be younger or, and very much more importantly, that she might look older. When she opens her eyes, she’s looking at her own reflection in the darkening window over the back of the sofa. She squints at what she finds there before her gaze pivots quickly to Caspian.

His hand - his other one - comes up to capture hers, his grip gentle. “Hey. Devi.” His voice is gentle. “You know that doesn't matter to anyone. Especially to me. If it does matter at all, you don't look a day over twenty-five.” Caspian does not add on the playful barb of ‘for a forty year old’ anywhere in there, despite it being the perfect line. His filter is still working, thank god.

“Let’s back it up a little.” He swallows, the methodical tick of the timer echoing in the quiet of his house. “We both have baggage. Issues. Things we don't talk about or like remembering. Thing is, we both…enjoy this. Miss this thing that we've got going on. I didn't go looking for this, and I know you didn't. We met on the street, I painted your garage, things happened, and we became…”. Caspian trails off, squeezing her hands, looking away into the fading twilight through the window behind the couch, the stars already starting to peek through.

When he finally looks back, it's with a determined expression. “So let's not do the high school thing and skirt the talk. Let's meet it head on and really figure it out.” Another gentle squeeze to her hands follows. “I…like this.” He admits, his voice quiet. “I like this a lot.” Her being here, with him. Her wanting to be here with him without the specter of obligation looming over them both. “I'd like this to keep going, for a while. Just to see what happens, even if what could happen scares the everloving shit out of me.” What was the quote? If you want it, go for it. Don't always play it safe, otherwise you'll die wondering what could have been.

Another glance is cast towards the window. Twenty-five, you say? She tips her head to consider the distorted, darkened reflection looking back at her … and the man seated beside both versions of herself. She takes a deep breath and rolls her head from side-to-side, like a fighter readying to enter the ring.

Ding! Ding! Ding

She turns to face him and his words head on.

There’s the briefest flicker reflected in the dark pools that are her irises, her gaze dropping to consider where they are connected by the slightest embrace - their hands wound together, his squeezing in a way that speak volumes. Providing support, seeking confidence, offering comfort, taking warmth. The way that she watches, even briefly, it’s almost as though no one has ever held her hand in such a fashion… or perhaps she simply had not noticed.

“I like this, too.” Her naturally husky tones manage to make her whisper quieter still - breezy. “Where the fuck it's going to take us, or where my road hits a dead end, sweetheart.” That is: she never imagined herself in a relationship, let alone where those things often lead - there are things he might want she may not be willing to provide, but they’ll have to figure that out along the way.

“But, this…” Devi finally finds her free hand and uses it to gesture between herself and Caspian in a flicked, back-and-forth motion. “This is just us? No shortcuts? No backroads?” Google translation, Biker to English: No sharing? No lies? No hiding?

“I've never been much for sharing.” Caspian nods, inclining his head towards her. “I've only dated a couple of people in my life at all, and they were so complicated to begin with that bringing in someone else was just…not going to happen. Besides. It's not how I was brought up.” Caspian shifts on the couch, pulling one leg beneath him. “If we do this, it's not just because I'm looking for an easy lay. Anyone with a fistful of fifties could get that off Staten in twenty minutes if they were choosy. I don't have the time or patience for that.” Caspian to biker? He's not hunting for a side chick, a one night stand, or a friend with benefits. If he does this, he does this all the way.

With her, and just her, and he'll expect the same.

“You've never had something like this, have you? Too much like a fairy tale?” His hazel eyes glance up to her makeup-lined ones, holding them, the unasked implication in his question that she'd never considered something like this, or someone like him, for her, his free hand moving around to pat the back of her hand that he's holding. She's got a chance to start a new chapter, if she wants. Not a new book - that's context. But a new chapter.

“I don't know where this is going, or even if it'll last until something explodes.” Caspian says. “The best part of the trip is the journey, though. Getting there is half the fun, and imagining what could be is…daunting.” He's honest there, just like he always has been with her. Still, it's worth repeating. “Just us. No shortcuts. No backroads. No detours. Just you and me and whatever comes.”

Fairy tale? That pops a brow and even tightens the corners of her glossed lips just slightly. She finds her beer again, though, and sips from it to buy her silence long enough to let him finish. All of it. She watches him over the contours of the brown-green bottle. Even when it lowers there’s a moment more where she chews at the side of her lower lip.

“No, I never had somethin’ like that…” Subtle wrinkles form at the corners of her eyes under the weight of her thoughts. She’s trying to find the nicest ones, for once. “It’s not all fairy tale, so much as… it’s not an ending.” Devi leans back into the arm of the sofa with a heavy sigh. “I’ve always wanted to avoid the ending so bad - the loss, the pain, the shit…” She half-shrugs. “But, to do that you gotta avoid the whole middle. The whole plot-thing. The whole love story.”

“If you don’t name it, if you don’t call attention to it - no one takes ya seriously. There’s no one to blame when people get hurt.” She wrinkles her nose as her words less and less sense. Finally, she shakes her head, tossing her ebon mane around her shoulders and manages a more fixed gaze on him. “I want this now, though. With you. Me as I am. You as you are. Enjoying the long ride.” A smile pull up on the left corner of her lips, softening her visage as a whole.

“Everything ends, eventually.” Caspian agrees with another squeeze on her hands. “I guess the trick is for it to end because of something you have no control over, and to enjoy the ride as long as you can. You can avoid the ending all you want, but not telling the story isn't fair to you at all. Just leads to regret and a different kind of heartache.” Caspian’s hand moves back down to rub Devi’s feet. “A friend of mine, before it all, kind of had something like this in his life. His mom,” Caspian frowns as he recalls. “She never left the house to do anything besides go to the store or the doctor and ended up regretting every decision she made leading up to that point. Ended up resenting him, too, for having a life outside her bubble, in the world where she was afraid to go. You're too brave. I mean…you're willing to try, after all.” That's something.

Caspian can't help but smile as he lets her talk and stumble over her own words. It reminds him of what his dad always used to say when he got overly excited and couldn't get the words out, so he says the same thing that his dad said. “Hey, It's okay. You don't need to say anything. Just get your words in order and, if you still need to say something when you're ready, say it. I'll be here to listen.”

Caspian reaches out to brush his thumb over her chin, over her lips delicately. “So, you want this, and I want this, so. I guess this is what we have. You. Me.” He holds up two fingers, one on each hand, bringing them together, and then he chuckles. He can't help it. “The one problem we're going to run into? How in the world am I going to explain you to Mom?” This is added with a teasing tone and a smirk. She'll have to get used to that. And just in time, too. The bell rings, indicating dinner is done.

Devina listens to the story of a life unspent. “Every man dies. Not every man truly lives.” She recaps with a wry smile. As he goes on to express his patience regarding her words, the expression softens. At this, she doesn't speak, though. Instead, she slides along the couch, folding in to make herself small despite long and slender legs. Nearer to him now, she rests her hand on the back of his neck and tips her head forward, resting her forehead to his. //Yes, this might work. //

She takes a deep breath, letting her eyes droop closed. It's a short-lived peace then…M-O-M. Her eyes pop open wide before rolling back in the same direction as her head. Staring up at the ceiling prays to some unseen, nonexistent force: Save me. What the fuck am I getting myself into?


The timer draws her back down to Earth and her attention back to the man before her. Her fingers massage at the back of his neck. "I don't have a good track record with moms." It's true. The one she met didn't seem to like her much. With that, she uncoils from his lap, reminded of the dinner waiting in the other room. She winks and holds out a hand, nudging her head towards the kitchen. "I make no promises. At least not ones I can't keep."

Caspian mentioning Mom got the exact result he was expecting and, with a snicker, he pats her lightly on the side of the leg. “Only kidding. Mom’s a world away in Kansas. We haven’t talked more than once or twice in the last six months, just to catch up. Don’t worry - you won’t have to be subjected to my granola-eating mom any time before you’re good and ready for it, if you ever are.” Her comment on promises gets a nod and a smirk, his head rocking forward to rest his forehead against hers for a brief moment. “I’ve found it easier to keep promises. Happiness is easier to maintain if there’s no looming disappointment in the background. It’s why I’m probably just as careful making them as you seem to be.”

Carefully, Caspian disentangles himself from the closeness on the couch, giving the timer a smack so the bell will quit ringing and padding off into the kitchen, giving Devi a few moments to ponder exactly what she’s gotten herself into. The sounds of ovens opening and closing - and a curse when he burns his pinky finger - can be heard, and after a minute he returns with his finger wrapped in a wet cloth. “Well, Chicken’s going to be ready once it’s rested about ten minutes.” He leans against the door jamb of the kitchen and just looks at the woman sitting on the couch for a second before he speaks, offering her a hand to help her to her feet. “Come on. Breast, leg, thigh or wing? I’ve got a whole bird and enough for leftovers tomorrow depending on how well you eat.”

With a smile, he leads her to the kitchen for a dinner. Together.

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