A Morning Flotilla


abby_icon.gif teo_icon.gif

Scene Title A Morning Flotilla
Synopsis Boats cover a portion of the floor and a pact to carry on with life, as if it isn't ending is made. Custody of Pila is discussed.
Date January 20, 2009

Siann Hall - Abigail, Alexander and Teo's Apartment.

It's not overly spacious, It's a New York area apartment. But it suits it's residents purposes. An open kitchen, crammed with all the accoutrements needed to cook, a dining table shoved against the far wall with chairs tucked in. A livingroom with a fairly new red suede couch shoved up agaisnt a window and TV set opposite on a stand makes up the rest of the communal living area. It looks fairly newly occupied and the personal touches not put to it yet. Five doors down a hall lead to three seperate bedrooms, a bathroom and linen closet. What's behind the doors remains a mystery unless one of the residents leaves a door open, though if someone knows the residents, the simple gold cross above one door indicates where the woman in this place lives.

Morning remasters the Bronx in pewter and gold, picking out the windows and steel rebar in warm tones, the asphalt and granite out in cold, grating the textures of distress and rusted shadows to everything at the oblique angle of the sunrise. It's kind of pretty to look at, even if Teo is disinclined to acknowledge such with his nose beginning to run and his eyelids weighing like lead against his face. Between getting his ass kicked by his could-be Prom date, and crawling graveyards with whiskey-stained old robbers

God save America. No one else will. He sticks the key into the doorknob, gives an expedient twist. For once, doesn't hurl himself bodily into it in order to open. Instead, there's a gentle push of his shoulder against the jamb, his strandy-haired head poked in, through, against the frame, his eyes sweeping the living area, once, wariness and anticipation mingling in his expression like two colors of paint poured, marbling, into the same falling stream.

'Al's not here, nor is your Aunt" Comes Abigails voice from the red couch. "Your safe" in as much as anyone can be safe. The cat's perched on her lap atop tucked under knees, her purr competing with the TV for noise. Abigails in pyjama's, the alcohol smelling ones having been soaked in water already and in a laundry basket somewhere settled in for her early morning shows before sleep.

At that, Teo looks a little like somebody had shoved their foot right up his arse and into his head. He straightens so abruptly from the waist that some sort of whiplash would probably have been involved if he wasn't wearing so much clothes that the layers involved added crucial supportive scaffolding to the existing structure. The door swings open with a homey creak of hinges. His traitorous face goes slightly red. He pulls himself in, closes their home behind him. "Ah," he says, blankly. "You found out about that. I— wanted to say happy birthday, and see how you were doing. Nice move-through with the flower pot, signorina. And buongiorno." He waves at the cat, who patently ignores him.

"He shot at Magnes just to prove that he's an asshole. I can't shoot him back so… I healed him. because it would pis him off" Abby doesn't shift, there's more than enough room for him to join her, or to park on the floor. "Little hard to not know your aunt is here. She was in the kitchen with all being hand fed chocolate like lovesick teenagers who made out in the booths at like one in the morning" Abby replies. "She's very pretty"

The boots come off first. Though Teo self-evidently doesn't plan to stay long, coming in at all demands certain protocol. Thump, thump; they drop, one after another, and he comes padding over, unbuttoning and unzipping his coat with a clink and growl of metal and canvas. His socked feet pick his way to the front of the couch. He plants himself on the floorboards a few feet ot the left of her perch. "It did piss him off," he acknowledges, after a momentary furrow of his brow: that Deckard shot Magnes. "Fucking A, Flint.

"Well. Good job. I swear, you and him, you're…" He aborts into silence before he gets the phrase aloud, 'match made in Hell,' knowing that wouldn't go over well. Glances at the TV, his eyes emptying slightly. "She is. She's my mother's identical twin. You have no idea how many boys I beat up over them, when I was little. Or how many men I tried to. Did you like her?"

"Not a good job. I'll be asking for forgiveness from the lord for that" Abby harumphs a lilittle before leaning down to rub her cheek against the top of Teo's head before straightening again. "I only met her for a few minutes. I came in all.. dirty, from taking care of you and smelling like a bar. She just kept saying it was a pleasure to meet me" Scarlet is tended to, coddled and petted as befitting her station within the household.

"Thanks, for the birthday thing. We're going out to Karaoke and lots of chocolate tomorrow night, a bunch of us. Your welcome to join us teo. Even if it's just for five minutes"

Lucia finds her pleasures wherever she can. Teo offers the television a smile that reaches his mouth, albeit only when the nudge of the woman's cheek makes a recalcitrant nest of his hair, and even then only faintly. Mind you, it isn't difficult for him to talk about his aunt, whom he loves, spoke to recently, saw nothing to forgive. He's only distinctly aware that Abby has long since enjoyed — suffered — been privvy to the revelation that there's more to this than a beautiful woman and her taste in dairy-based sweets. It's somewhat embarrassing. He tends toward secrets, at least when the alternative seems to be bitching about people he loves.

And 'the people he loves' must be self-evident, by now. "I'll come! At least for five minutes. I have to drop off your birthday present anyway," he says. He lifts his elbows up onto the couch behind him and slumps between them, tilting his head back, sideways, to look at Abby in her PJs. "Thank you too. For putting me back together again."

"I'll be there. Always there to put you back together when I can. It's wrong ot say, but.. i'm glad it was you and not me. I probably would have…" But she doesn't finish that question. "Your box is in your bedroom Teo. Your Christmas present. If you hadn't found it yet" The healer shifts on the couch, much to the displeasure of the cat. "Invite your aunt for dinner. If you can handle it. You can invite Alexander, or we can schedule it for a night he's working. I'd like to make dinner for you both, we should have done it when you found out she was in town. It's proper, good manners. Her firs titme seeing me shouldn't have been me stinking of alcohol and smokes and covered in.. you"

There is no end to the gratitude that locks up in Teo's chest like a fist. It is a bit like being punched in the heart. Right through. There might be something a little odd about that, maybe— because she's glad it was him and not her, but he's glad about that too. So he smiles, perhaps more shakily than the prospect of his Christmas present truly warrants. Picks himself up, slapping residual cold if not actual snow crystals off the thighs of his pants. Goes to retrieve the box at an appropriately jaunty gait, and returns with it clasped between his palms, held up against his ear as if he honestly expects to hear the ticking of a detonator's timer.

"You're right," he says, diligently agreeable. Of course she's right. "I've been busy, it— kind of slipped my mind. I should've talked to Magnes by now too. Mi dispiace. There should be dinner. Whoever can come should come. It might be our last time eating at home in awhile." Where 'awhile' is a clever euphemism for 'forever.' Ungainly, he flops down into a squat, a few inches away from blocking her view of the television screen. Wedging the package between his knees, he starts to open it up, brisk with childish audacity.

The box shifts it's contents, some clinking, and some not. Inside are probalby abotu 20 boats of carious materials and all palm sized or smaller. Lots of boats, a veritable flotilla. "Don't know how many people will fit in here, but, it can be done. Careful with magnes. He's good, he's a good guy, just.. over eager. He dreams of being a superhero. Not a bad thing, but he's practical at times too. He's a gentle guy" Abigail shifts, watching Teo wedge the box and open it. "I shared a kiss New Years Eve with him"

A veritable flotilla. Cut to Teodoro Laudani, who is now roughly six years old, grabbing the vessels out one by one, studying each with a discerning eye, very close and then at arm's length, rapidly assembling their number into a battle — of travel formation led by the miniaturized ferocity of an orange tug-boat.

An oil tanker brings up the left flank, a cruise ship in pristine plastic white the right. "I guess if there was a world that could use superheroes, this would probably be it. We seem to have the supervillain quota covered twice over. But I guess I can also understand why il vecchio is fed up with him." To which he might be referring to either the heroism or New Year's. It might be difficult to tell: Teo's features are studiously nonchalant, whatever suspect thoughts he has easily concealed under vast magnitude of his wonder.

"I used to sail. Dunno if you knew." Pallid eyes focus past the shape of the speedboat he had lifted for his inspection; study her face past it, smiling. "And I finally figured something out about that the other day, although it fuckin' took me long enough. You've changed the way I see. Literally. Physically."

"Didn't know you used to sail. We had a boat. a row boat, slap it down and go looking for alligators. I bet you smiled alot when you were sailing, and swore alot" She reaches over, dipping a hand to bring up a little canoe made of bark, passing it over. Delicate and very breakable. "How so?"

Teo smiles a lot anyway. That doesn't mean anything. Abby finds herself momentarily subject to a questioning fish-eye on that one, though the size of his orbs teeters back to even as she speaks onward. Alligators. "We only had rogue crocodiles sometimes," he notes, wryly, before the corners of his eyes deepen with rueful laughter. "Like a f— like a sailor. Yeah, sailing is great. I never got behind rowing, though. Tried once or twice. But having the timekeeper's spit fly into your mouth at the speed of your velocity while they call numbers? Not my idea of fun."

The bullet-sleek speedboat is laid down carefully in front of his socked toes. He lifts his palm to accept the canoe into the hollow of it, lowers it so he can press up, near, almost to his nose, studying the slat boards that might have seated a fairy. "You know when you're out at night or looking at nocturnal photography, you see anything bright, there are little sharp lines radiating out of the shape of light? Like points stabbing out of stars, except you see it in street lamps, head lights, and everything?

"Those are artefacts from retinal scarring. Physical lens damage. Desert people have it worse, from sand grain, but I had it pretty fucking bad from sailing. Salt wind and water flying into my face all the time. Then you fixed me. These days, when it's dark out, light looks…"

"Now there's no fingers coming off the light, like a halo" Abby murmurs. "it looks like?" She plucks up another boat, some little tin dinghy affair, replete with wooden oars you could move.

Dingies were the first boats Teo ever learned to steal. The canoe is grasped between forefinger and thumb, deemed unseaworthy, but no worse for it: he wouldn't want it to rot, that's all. "Like a halo," he agrees, shifting his attention to the dingy even as he places the frail wooden pip down inside the protective triangle of its more poweful cousins. "Si. It's like that exactly."

'Funny really. The little things that I can fix" Abby's dropped her voice to very quiet, the TV shut off with the press of a button. "Things are changing Teo. I don't know whether to plan everything as if i'm going to survive, or make plans now, so that there's little left behind that people need to take care of."

His fleet before him, Teo puts his arms around his knees. Doesn't sit down out of his crouch. Without the TV's glare to silhouette him from behind, his features are easier to make out in the neutral light of dawn, but aren't too much easier to read for it, the lines of his face falling neutral too. "I think I know what you mean. Like our lease situation.

"I was talking to the landlady and I couldn't stop thinking how fucking surreal it was. Talking about moving out at the end of the month, finding her new tenants, when… when we're trying to save the world from a fucking viral apocalypse. And I feel like a fucking moron for caring about stuff like— what my aunt's doing in her personal life, or bruises, papercuts, and keeping my room organized. It shouldn't be important anymore. Maybe that's not what you mean." He lapses into doubt, as ever, acknowledging his limited capacity to understand anybody else. "I don't know whether I should be making peace or getting ready to struggle on."

If she can't figure out what to do, how could she expect anyone else to know what to do. There's a firm line of Abigails lips before she shifts again, dislodging the cat who seeks higher and less siezmic ground. Her arms wrap around the italian, pulling him back against the couch so she can lay her cheek on the back of his head, let his hair tickle her nose. Her arms some substitute scarf, wrapped around his shoulders and neck. "Lets choose then. Right here, right now"

At least Teo doesn't shake or anything dumb lik ethat. Despite being cold in the nose and — nervous about the future. He watches the cat scale the couch and Abby circle around, pleasantly puzzled, failing entirely to understand, until she's right there with him and offering the protective custody of her arms. Blue eyes blink guppy kisses at the air and he is, for a moment, very still and very silent, the palpitations of his heart stifled by too many clothes and his breathing kept between his teeth.

"I think you should live," he says. Clumsily. "I think you will. They'll look after you. Gillian— she's hard as a coffin nail, I met her. Hel, and Trask. I really want to, too, but— but… ahh. It's very— gruesome to think about," he says, unsteadily. A poor euphemism for Hell. "I keep thinking I should play it safe." Dark straw hair quivers in her breath. Smells like soap, sweat, snow, nothing especially foul in the great scheme of things, but fouller than she is. He is aware of this too.

"Then it's settled, we'll both plan to survive. You'll help Al and I move, get your room set up with us. You'll make midnight runs with coffee on my nights off so that I am properly caffinated and studying, and let me practice CPR on you" She closes her eyes, a few rubs of her cheek against his hair, inhaling the scent that is unique to Teo. 'hear deckard whine about me, hear me blather about kissing magnes again. Picking up Scarlet from the vets after she's fixed, teasing pila in her cage and making her sing. Dinner once a week. I expect that. Only way I can ensure that you'll eat properly. SO I can fix your bruises too"

Thinking about Hell will make you crazy if you do it too much, so Teo decides to stop now, before he begins to laugh or cry or something equally ridiculous. If he can keep pleas out of his evening prayers, he'll be all right. "I should make amends with Al anyway, I guess. That's— the only thing I'll do. No good-byes, right? That's the bottom line. We— won't do any good-byes. You know, I've been so close to asking Hana to take over my part for me because I don't want to— uh. To die, and I think she could do it anyway." In his paradigm of reality, there's nothing Hana can't do.

"I'm probably going to be thinking about that the whole meeting this Friday. I don't know if you heard about it already, but you need to be there. Edward Ray is supposed to explain." Circuitous soupcons of information. His voice thrums through shoulders, transfers kinesthesis through clothes, into her arms. "I never even showed you how to get Pila to climb onto your finger. We'll do that too, between the… your medical training?" Blankly, at that, though he sounds of more certainy when he says: "In the bathroom, take her out of her cage. We should do that soon. Before the dinner."

"Helena already made sure that I knew about the meeting. We talked. I went to find her to tell her the costs now, of my healing people. I already know what i'm needed there for. SHe'll tell you, i'ms ure, at some point" And if anyone ever thought they were going to die, right there, was her sureity even more than it was of sylar killing her. "If I can survive, you can survive" her arms tightening to near hcoking for a moment before relaxing again. "I'd like that, I usually have to scoop her up a bit and then let her mosey her way down my arm or onto my shoulder at her pace. You can take her with you Teo. Helena was hoping you would actually, and I won't be upset. She'd get more attention at the dispensary i'm sure."

A hand closes on her arm, warm through the fabric of her pyjamas sleeve, a thumb on the round bone of her elbow. Teo ducks his head to kiss his thumb, or her elbow through proxy, and huddle in what feels at least temporarily like safe harbor. It seems terribly inappropos, that the girl so blessed is weighing their situations on the same set of scales, but he will take his blessings where he can find them. "I won't," he says, after a protracted moment spent trying to make his throat into a shape he can use. He has to cough once, gruffly, smooth out the rasp in his windpipe, from constriction that couldn't entirely be attributed to the ferocity of Abigail's arms.

Ah, Lord: he's pathetic. "Naw. She should stay with you two and Scarlet. Famigl — 's family, right? The kind you get to choose. Hel will get to meet her. Maybe at dinner. You can bring Magnes, if you want."

"Too cold to move her right now anyways, not toa s trange place. Wait till the spring, then she can stay at the dispensary for a bit. joint custody" Though he gets a headbutt with her temple to his head when he says he won't. Unknowing whether he means that he won't surrive, or won't take the bird. "Niki called"

The headbutt elicits a disgruntled "Ow," more a grumble than an exclamation; Teo squints up the right side of his face, which extends to a full grimace the moment that the conversation shifts away from harmless blue birds you could catapault with a paperback novel and toward the sociopath who damn near killed his people. "I hope she did it from prison. You mind me asking what she wanted?" There's a half-turn of his head back, no real effort to try and see her in the edge of his peripheral vision, although his ear, swiveled, locates her voice and the quiddity of her breathing better now than it had before.

'Niki called, she had a phonecall I guess, she's locked up still. She was lonely, and I guess tired of listening to Jessica. WE talked, a little. She knows some of what Jessica's done, not all. Psychologists to deal with before they decide whether to release her or not. She's in a third prison. I suppose it might be the company, or still homesec. Jessica popped up at one point, apologized in her own way, for what was done with Elisabeth and myself, but that she'd do it again. I think Niki kicked her ass in the mind, though, becuase Niki came back, and we talked about what song to sing at Karaoke. I think.. Jessica's in for a long haul in the back of her mind, now that Niki knows she's there" The blonde speaks this all still quietly, an even breath. It's getting easier to talk about the psychopaths, and of her friends.

Catholic by culture as well as by choice, Teo nevertheless reserves the right to be skeptical sometimes. Not loudly. It isn't that sort of moment. "That's something," he says, presently. He pulls one socked foot closer to him, careful not to overturn boats. "Maybe the Agent Parkman will help the shrinks. Maybe it'll work out." Haloes, he has to remind himself. Especially when it's dark. "What song will you sing?"

You say, "When you believe" Abby answers. 'If they have it. Tink I can hit mariah carey's notes? Probably not, but, i'm a pretty decent singer. Maybe do some ABBA with Helena. I heard she likes ABBA. And then you'll have to do the whole "when the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie that's amore" or something equally cheesy and italian?" She lets go of him, gottne her own quota of comfort and hitting her limit for personal contact. Shifting to sit up on the couch. "as for Hana" The blonde looks down at him then stands. "You do what needs to be done Teo. What needs to be done for your well being, and then phoenix's well being. You should go. Before the rush hour. I need to get some sleep"

January 19th: Keystrokes
January 20th: The Birds and the Bees
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