A Nail In The Coffin, Part II


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Scene Title A Nail In The Coffin, Part II
Synopsis Ling chooses where to hit, so that Logan can decide how hard. Two Linderman employees, both covert and not, square away some plans.
Date October 20, 2009


The pulsing beat of bass throbs through the walls of Rapture, a high-class nightclub in the heart of Harlem. Rows of expensive cars line up out front of the exclusive club and a crowd of would-be patrons wait outside, cherry-picked by the bouncers to have only the cream of the crop on the interior, while leaving just enough eye-candy outside to entice other patrons. The club serves as a respite for the trendy and the influential from the grind of daily life.

On the inside, Rapture is as much a spectacle as it is a structure. Multiple dance floors in tiered balconies overlooking an enormous central dance floor ringed by plush leather-upholstered booths. Pale blue light shines on the wrap-around bar that curved around the back of the establishment, and the entire building is filled floor-to-floor and shoulder-to-shoulder with the pulsing, flowing sea of people dancing to the rythmic beats of electronic dance music piped through the expansive sound-system.

Some things never change. Pulsing beats, a swarm of dancing people, and washed over blue light greeted her as she set foot in the building, the seem as it had been the first day she had come to it seeking work, and the same it had been the day she "quit". Rapture. It had been a few weeks since Ling had set foot in the nightclub where the whole misadventure she found herself a part of had begun. It was fitting, then, that she found herself here again tonight, intending to speak again about it's impending end. She had dressed up for the occasion, as she did an time she set foot within it's walls, an attempt to elevate herself above all the dancers and party goers with little else to do.

A follow up meeting after the previous night, that was what had been discussed. She had been hesitant at first, but knowing how things were heading it quickly faded, and now she found herself making deliberate pace through the sound of her click-clacking heels, smircking as her eyes finally fall on the man she was here to meet.

As if to separate himself from the masses of club-goers, as high-class as most may be, Logan too is dressed for the occasion. A stark white luxurious suit is tailored well to his lanky frame, the white shirt's collar beneath that unfettered by tie or buttons, his blonde hair made more golden in contrast and skin tone less pallid, despite the slight harshness of the dance club's lighting. His arms are spread along the back of the booth he's seated at, tinted glasses resting low on the bridge of his nose and peering at the swarming dancers with vague interest. His splinted, broken hand taps against the leather upholstery to the beat of the techno track currently vibrating through the building. Rough bandages are mostly hidden by an aluminum clasp that seals off three fingers, decorated with rhinestone.

Sensing the presence of someone moving at a tangent from the general flow of movement in the building, Logan turns his head in time to see Ling's approach, and affords the woman a warm smile. His hand moves, picks up the wine glass he's currently indulging in, still cold - one just like it rests on the table, intended for her.

Initiatally, Ling only offers a nod in Logan's direction, her pace slowing as she reaches her destination. An amused smirk crosses her face, even as she sets a handbag down and takes her seat. "A pleasure to see you again, Mr. Logan," she comments as she eyes the glass of wine for a moment. It was somewhat refreshing to see someone dressed equally well as herself in the establishment, leading her to offer the man a smile as she takes a sip of the wine. "I must say, this is already a welcome change of pace," she begins, setting the glass down with a clink. "Normally when I come to Rapture, it's to speak with addicts, or… Kain." The disdain is palatable as she speaks.

"It's almost a shame that this meeting is for business," she continues. "But, I suppose that's how things go when you're in such unique situations." This time, she looks Logan dead in the eyes, amusement washed from her face.

Peeling off his glasses, purple shades not entirely appropriate for the venue barring affectation, Logan lifts his eyebrows at that comment of Kain, a wide smile writing across his face and eyes crinkled with amusement. He doesn't disagree, as he folds up the glasses with a click and sets them aside, and when she squares that look on him, amusement doesn't retreat immediately.

"I have a bad habit of mixing business and pleasure," he says, hand curled around his wine glass, the reisling within it golden-pale and dry to taste. "Perhaps I'll be a bad influence on you. I hope you're not having second thoughts regarding our unique situation."

A chuckle escapes from Ling. "No, I don't think so," she replies, though with no indication as to which of Logan's comments it's directed at. "In fact, all things consider it's all been rather lucrative. Certainly not what I have had in mind, but we all have to take small steps to reach where we want to get, don't we?" Ling's mouth curls up into the same devious smile she had been sporting the previous night.

"But, how about we get down to business? Perhaps then, the pleasure part of your evening can come a bit fast." The amusement returned to her voice as Ling leaned foward, taking her glass in hand.

"Things rarely pan out to be what you had in mind," Logan says, with a languid gesture of his wine glass, reclining back into his seat before taking a brisk sip of wine. The glass it set aside, though he keeps his hand resting over the top, all sharp angles helped by the formal lines of his attire. "How about we, then. I've a simple question, to begin with: I'm planning to strike hard and fast. Waiting will only give Zhao a chance to change his mind, should he start poking around for a better deal. I need to know where to hit, when it comes to the Flying Dragons."

This was something Ling knew with full confidence, and her smile only widen as she places her hands down on the table. "That is simple enough, and I feel… a bit silly for not having the presence of mind to mention it last night," she sais, tapping her fingers on the table. "Liu has much placed with in the Golden Luck Dragon Restaurant in Chinatown. I have seen man Flying Dragon associates there, and a rather… decedent basement is where I was taken to meet with Liu himself." She gives Logan a nod, waiting a moment before continuing. "I don't know if much Refrain related activities happens there, though I do belive Bao-Wei has been working with the drug in the confines of his own office. What I am confident in, however, is that Liu Ye has placed much stock in this resturant."

He gives a brisk shake of his head, dismissive. "Refrain's only a part of it, really. The currency. I'm more interested in breaking the spine of the beast than simply cutting off a limb, know what I mean." That last part is purely rhetorical, slapped together in a South London shrugging slur. "I'd rather you tell me tonight, to be honest, rather than in front of Zhao. He's an ally, not yet squared away with us - we don't need him knowing the details first hand. Speaking of that— "

Logan tilts his head a little. "I hope you've got a plan in keep Mr. Cong away from the Ghost Shadows. Former Flying Dragons allegiances and injured pride'll only keep 'em separated for so long when Zhao realises he won't need the Linderman Group for supply. I don't suspect we can bring Mr. Cong into our fold sooner than the Shadows could bring him into theirs."

Ling visibly falters for a moment, in a rare moment caught off guard by Logan's assertion. She hadn't even considered the possibility of Bao-Wei finding his way to the Ghost Shadows, and Logan had made an excellent point in mentioning it. So excellent, Ling cursed herself for having not thought of it sooner. Still, she work her hardest to regain her composure, clasping her hands together on the table. "To be honest, that wasn't something I had considered, no. I can certainly see what can be done. I'm not sure if it's a sense of nationalism that drives him, or simply the money that working with Liu inherantly brings him." Exhaling sharply, she reaches down to her glass and take another sip. "Tomorrow, I will take a… furtive look around the office and see what traces I can turn up."

"Bao-Wei is a loose end," Logan says, splaying his fingers up from his grip on the glass to check his nails. "As far as I can tell, you're a trusted dealer of Refrain for the Dragons, and that's what he believes too. You take care of him and I'll make sure the Ghost Shadows are right happy with their deal that they won't even think to look elsewhere. We're charismatic, attractive indi-vid-uals." His smile is quick, along with the subtle moth-flap wink. "It'll be fine. If something changes, we compare notes— " He tips his glass in a gesture, and brings it up for another sip. "And, well. We'll cross the bridge when it comes along."

Polishing off his wine and setting the glass aside, Logan returns his arms to spread along the back of the booth. "So, this Gold Luck Dragon place. Anything I should be looking to loot while 'm doing there or better to focus on kicking it apart?"

"The trusted dealer," Ling corects with an odd, somewhat unwelcome sense of pride. Shaking the unnerving feeling off, she takes on a thoughtful look, eyes moving to glance at the ceiling. "I'm sure there's plenty to take. Money, Refrain, women… it was a monument to depravity and decadence, unlike much else I've seen before. If you want something specific, I'm afraid I have little to offer you there." She muses to herself for a moment, and then gives a surprisingly casual shrug. "If Song Ye was still alive, I'm sure you could find all sorts of depraved things she would have kept for her bizarre whims. Otherwise, you might be better suited focusing solely on 'kicking the place apart', as you put it."

He gives her a nod of blank acknowledgment towards that correction, and otherwise listens. Fingers curling, Logan grazes his knuckles lightly across his shaven jaw, thoughtful. "I know all about depravity and decadence. Had a gut full of it already." Although if the interest that flashes in pale green eyes is to be of any indication, this is something of a lie. "I'll see what I can do. Now, is there anything I can't do for you, Ms. Chao? This is all a very abrupt end to your lucrative career as a spy, I can recognise that much - but your work has been invaluable."

Ling grins, taking the final sip of her wine. "Perhaps it is, but perhaps another opportunity awaits," she remarks, her confident tone almost making it sound like she knows more than she leads on to. "I'm not one to sit around and wait, Mr. Logan. All I ask if that you keep your ears listening for an opening." She leans back in her seat once more, moving the wine glass a bit to the side as she looks ahead at the man once more with a serious expression. "I live my life based on opportunity and what best serves my rise through the world. Any help you can provide in this venture is most welcome, and will always be returned in kind."

"There's always another opportunity," Logan agrees at a purr. If he's curious or flustered by any signs of Ling knowing her intentions beyond the horizon of the war to come, it certainly doesn't show on his face save for a hint of hesitation before the notion is eased on by. Angling his wrist to look at the silver watch strapped to it, he then moves to slide out of the booth.

Feet clad in Italian patent leather shoes of a very flamboyant royal blue are thusly revealed as he goes to stand, picking up his glasses and placing them back on, hiding green eyes beneath the dark purple glass. "I think we have much in common, Ms. Chao, and as much as I'd love to stay and find out more, I've got another appointment regarding our unique situation."

A smile is flashed to Logan as he stands, and another short nod given. "Perhaps, then, we will have to meet and talk again sometime, Mr. Logan. Outside the confines of such a loud, oppressive locale." A flourish of her hand outward to the surrounding nightclub makes her meaning clear, and after a moment of her own, she rises from her seat, handbag in tow. "Good luck with your applicant," she says with amusement, heels click-clacking again as she takes a step forward, flipping something not unlike a business card fro her palm to her fingers, smoke wisping up from it's edges as she does. "Feel free to contact me anytime."

Tinted glass veils any reaction in his eyes as to the smoke and mirrors (or just the smoke) of her card flourish, though his eyebrows lift a little. There's only minor hesitation to Logan taking the card and disappearing it into the innerpockets of his white jacket, affording her a smile. "I certainly will. And I believe you know exactly where to find me." Burlesque is about as subtle as the strip club manager's current attire, and just as hard to forget.

His splinted hand comes up to pinch the edges of his glasses between his freed thumb and index finger, tugging them in something of a salute. "You have a good evening," the Brit says in departure, before he's making a brisk beeline for the exit of the club, a blonde and white clad figure winding through the crowd.

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