Absurdly Familiar


abby_icon.gif teo3_icon.gif

Scene Title Absurdly Familiar
Synopsis It's been a long time since the gold standard of midnight phone calls happened between the south and Sicily. But it happens, when Abby needs a ride home after the Queens disaster.
Date April 10, 2010

St. Luke's Hospital

It's likely been a long time since Teo's gotten an actual flappy hands, I need help, please come get me kind of phonecall between Abigail and Teo. So long that Abigail can't remember at least, when that last happened. But partway through the stay in the emergency room, there was that call. Calm pained Abigail when allowed to make a call, trying to get a hold of Teo and arrange a ride back home from St. Lukes since her SUV is destined for the scrap heap and evaluation by the insurance company to replace it. Two firetrucks will do that, no matter how big and bulky the vehicle.

Perched on the side of the bed, feet dangling and just barely touching the floor, the blonde is in need of a shower to get rid of the smell of smoke. Scrubs on, uniform in a bag at her side and breathing shallow to not invoke pain beyond what they've dosed her up with. Which has left a pretty goofy grin on her face and tapping toes. Hit by her own car sucks, and dopey blue eyes look past the pushed back curtain for a certain Sicilian white knight.

He appears. It is probably too scar-snaggled around the corner to be— like magic, but it's prompt, and quick, and while not a surprise, a sudden and seamless appearance out of nowhere. Teo's dressed in a manner that's too familiar. A hoodie yanked on underneath a coat, no doubt another shirt (or three) underneath, making his lean frame a few inches broader across the chest and at the arms than he really ought to be. "Buona sera, Abigail. You look—

"—familiar," is the word he decides on, with a crooked smile that fails entirely to retain his ire. White teeth make for a poor dam, perhaps. In any case, only relief is left by the time he's nudging the curtain aside, a clinking of plastic parts through the steel rail overhead. "Queens too, I take it?"

"Teooooooo" No high pitched squeal or jumping up to kiss him. A glance to his mouth and then back up to blue eyes and the smile widens. Any trouble between the pair obliterated by drugs, at least for now. "Queens" She nods. "Helping Mel find a place to live" A shallow breath that makes talking long sentences a pain in the ass. "Firetrucks hit my car, then hit me" Two hands push herself up from the bed carefully, it's height set that way for a certain reason. All paperwork has been signed and since her ride is here, she can go.

'Couple broken ribs. That's all" That's all. She's not shot, no major limbs broken, no surgery. Just colorful beneath her clothing and a few weeks healing. Unless whatever causing the slight fever and altered her genetics decides to do otherwise. "Peter's gonna be riding with the Vegan, or Johan. Probably Johan" She picks up her bag of clothes, passing them to her former roommate to carry instead of her. She's going to take her time leaving here.

"I called you. I promised I'd call you Teo. Are you satisfied? I haven't forgotten you at all"

The bag of clothes is taken in one large hand, and Teo slips the strap over his shoulder. Claps a palm over the zip, assuring himself that it's properly sealed up, because he doesn't want to take his eyes off the Southern woman. Lest she— trip and fall over, perhaps? It's been a long time since he saw her in this state, or indeed, seen anyone in this state, but he still remembers how it goes. "Satisfied?

"Are you paying your dues to the shrine of…" Teo hovers a paranoid hand above her shoulder, before deciding that he doesn't need to physically grasp and steer her. She's okay. A little happier than usual, is all. A little artificial happiness never hurt. If nothing else, he follows her toward the portal-windowed door. "Eileen got shot. Fire engines, bullets flying. I swear, this city's sinking in turgid shit."

"Turgid shit" She giggles, then regrets near instantly doing so as her hands go to her ribs to hold them. "I don't worship at any shrine. Though shalt not covet! Don't covet! Wait, no. I do. I want to covet Robert but, don't tell him that" A finger drawn up to cross her lips and a soft shhh emerging from them. One wonders if Robert doesn't already know that she's here and going home seeing as how Linderman fingers are as prevalent in the city as Ferry fingers are. "Eileen okay? She went in the building. I couldn't stop her"

Against her favourite and only Sicilian she goes, using him as support on her good side. "Fire engines obliterated my car. I got hit by my own car Teo. Woman I was saving… she died" But Abigail lived to flap hands. "Fireman's going to die, probably everyone I saved is going to die or died" None of it her fault. "Take me somewhere, home, safe house, I don't care, just take me. I have enough painkillers to wait till later to get the scripts filled"

Ah— Teo's hand touches down gently, then, long fingers curving gently down over to intersect with the slender arc of her shoulder. Not that he can cure the agony of broken ribs with only a touch, of course. No, that was her gift, back in the day. And if it's back, neither of the two yet know about it. "Everyone dies," he says, after a moment. It's meant to be comfort, and maybe, with her drug-addled haze being about as vapidly blond-cloud and airy as Teo's increasing sleep-deprivation is making him, it comes across that way.

Everybody dies. Tamara had said so. "Eileen's stable, thanks to Allegre. I can't do jack shit for her," and this, he says with an audible touch of consternation, knitting his brow worse than any mention of Caliban or coveting him could have. "I'm worse at healing than you could ever be, tesoro. You helped save people, and I almost think it'd insult you if I said I didn't think broken ribs weren't worth it.

"Which is the only reason I won't." It's a faintly terrible thing to say, but alleviated faintly by the wry touch to his tone.

"Everyone dies. Some day, you'll die. I'll die. Everyone will die. There goes the mood, roller coaster at the top and quickly plummeting as out into the lightly falling snow they go, looking for whatever vehicle it is that Teo managed to beg, borrow or steal to get here. "Eileen won't die. She's like me. We've gone through too much to let a stupid bullet or a needle full of something kill us. She'll pull through. God wouldn't let her die. She'll be bossing everyone around and walking around with her big ol'bird soon enough"

"You got my message then. About Tamara and it." It being the formula. But, as quickly as she touches on that, she's flitting away from the topic. "How's Flint?"

They have cut this silhouette and reflected shadow on the linoleum of these hallways before. Teo can't quite put his finger on when, exactly, but it's absurdly familiar, an homage to a time that Abby is druggedly making fun of. Which is okay. Everyone will die. The orderlies pass, try not to stare too obviously at the broken side of Teo's face, and for once— he doesn't notice, doesn't even try to tell whether or not their eyes had betrayed a flicker of curiosity at the expense of his ugliness.

"He's beginning to smell, but I got good enough drugs to beat back the sepsis. I'm trying to figure out how to knock his ass unconscious so I can give him a bath. He'll hate me for that, some more," the Sicilian says, blankly. Tamara and it. It's an errant notion, adrift in the crowding sea of other thoughts, that not even her ability could fix what's broken in Deckard now. A pink cartoon hippopotamus waves at Abby and reminds her what the symptoms for measles are. "But worse things, I guess. A little hate never killed any of us."

If she wasn't high as a kite and pupils wide, she might not have inquired as to Flint and his status. her text message back to Teo had succinctly said as much. She didn't care. But she does and there's a hitch in her breath that has nothing to do with the cracks and fracture that litter one side of her ribcage when he's relaying Flint's state.

Hippo can go fuck himself as she looks up at Teo. blonde brows moving inwardly down, lines creasing her forehead as she tries to comprehend what exactly that all means. Has he given up? Unable to tend to himself? No, not if they'd have to knock him unconscious just to bath him. "He hit me again" It's quiet, oh so quiet that one might just mistake it for something else. "Tell…" Tell him what? What could she say that would make Flint voluntarily take a bath. "Nothing. I don't have any tricks. I'm out of tricks for him. I'm sorry"

For no reason or sentiment that has a brief and definable name, Teo finds his throat closing up briefly. The apple of it bobs briefly against the white flesh of his neck, and he reaches up to rough a callused palm down his bearded jaw.

"Non problema," he says, unsteadily. He closes his eyes, briefly. Squeezes them, then reopens. Finds that they're now halfway down the hall from where he last had them open. "I'm not sure I have any tricks left, either. Some part of me keeps trying to convince the other parts of me that this isn't my fucking responsibility, anyway.

"I don't know. It'll end, somehow. We're coming up on some kind of ending, with Deckard. That isn't supposed to be morbid— it just is what it is, I guess. Feels like there's no fucking way back." His fingers rasp one against the other, briefly, and then he wedges them into the pockets of his trousers. "You'd tell me if Caliban ever did anything to you, I hope. I'm not— I don't think he has. But hypothetically."

"I'd tell you, I promise Teodoro. Swear on a stack of bibles and a pile of crosses Teodoro. Robert ever does anything untoward, I will walk away. She won't promise him that Caliban won't. She'd always sworn that Flint wouldn't touch her in that way, professed it that he wouldn't unless it was purposeful to save her life.

"We really were happy? It wasn't some lie you were spinning hoping we could make things between us better? We really were happy and loved each other in the future that you came back from? Would you hate me if I told you that part of the reason I took what Richard offered is because.. if I get healing back, maybe.. he can have that future? Where I can heal and he's happy and we're all happy"

No Bibles at hand, never mind a whole stack of them, but Teo takes the sentiment as it's supplied. Accepts it, with a nod of something like grace, has to blink two or three times to focus his eyes. The lobby's looming up, half-empty at this hour of night, even with the record levels of accidents and chaos that rule New York City in the fist of blizzarding gloom. Their shoes click echoes through the wide receptionist's space, and Teo speeds up a few increments, to glance sidelong at her, discreetly as he can.

Make sure her buttons and zips are done up, before the doors gasp them out into the hard black cold of the night. He almost welcomes the weather, for once, despite that it kicks up the ache in the scar-snarled ruin of his one cheek.

A distraction from these things that Abby says, so blithely sweet. I don't know. I don't think you can fix him anymore. For a moment, the Sicilian's eyes are too shiny, staring out into the dark.

Imperfect darkness, of course. The Upper West Side is knotted up deep in the urban map, well within the patterned regularity of street lights. They glow lambent yellow, and cars shift in the distance. "You really were happy." His head jerks, flips ragged locks back from his eyes, but they don't get around to meeting hers. His fingers dig into the strap of the duffel over his shoulder, and he clears his throat on a cracked, dieselly register. "Flint was still insecure as fuck, about a lot of things.

"You were more— cynical, then, too. Which is strange to think, but you were. I think you're still more of an idealist even now, maybe because you need to be. But yeah. You loved each other."

She's sigh, if she thought she could stand it as she loops an arm around Teo's to hold on as they emerge into still dark morning, Light has yet to threaten for an hour or so on the horizon. Likely will by the time Teo manages to get her installed to wherever he'll end up doing it. "I love him Teo. I don't think I'll ever stop. But I don't like him and can't like a man who'd do that to a woman that he loves" To a man who killed a friend, knowing full well - in her eyes she thinks he knew full well - what it would do to her.

It's cold, fucking, fricking, nasty cold and his face aches and her breath is sucked from her as they make the transition. Nose wrinkle, eyes clamped shut quickly as if that might help make the cold go away if she can't see it. Snow falls, attaching to strands of dirty blonde hair, cheeks, eyelashes and her arm tightens around Teo's to stick close. Support and warmth. "How's Francois? He still pretty?"

"Very. Makes my knees weak. Our knees weak, I guess I'd say, if I didn't think you were made of steelier stuff than that, signorina," Teo says. The shoe-pocked snow glows strangely blue, despite that the lights supplied are white or yellow. "I hope you get your healing back. There's a lot of literature— well, where Ghost comes from, anyway, on how disposition affects ability manifestation. I mean, Francois will envy you to death if you do, but he could use a little extra humility, I think. I have reason to begin to think he is slightly crazy, in a way not necessarily mistaken for nobility or ambition for greatness. Other-crazy."

This, Teo manages to say straight-faced, as they walk past the small figures of two children that his higher brain functions know can not possibly be there. A girl with corn-flax hair, and a touch of sardonic cleverness to her smile that she didn't inherit from her biological father, and a ginger boy whose freckles go all the way down to the hand he has clasped around hers. They turn their ruddy faces and button noses to follow Abigail and Teo walking in tandem past. They do not say a word.

Teo pretends not to see them. "Control-freak crazy. But it's kind of funny. He doesn't lose it when I mess up his plans, anyway. We're going to his place right now, if that's okay with you." He glances at her, his eyes crinkled as if the faint crows' feet at the corners could conserve heat. "The brownstone in the West Village. Kershner got it for him. It's the closest, aside of the Cathedral, and the Cathedral is full of homeless tonight."

"Yeah. I called home already. My guest won't run away" She has a guest it seems, over at Rivage. "Never been to his place. I bet.. I bet it's not decorated yet and I don't want to go to the cathedral. Francois's will do. Till I've slept and I filled my pills and then I need to go to the bar and get… my insurance papers and deal with .. insurance people" Exaggerated as if they were stuffy and important people. As it it was like calling the president himself. She doesn't see children from the future, and if she did.. Well, there's be something really wrong with her. "You or he can cook me breakfast, when things aren't so funny and strange and bring me ice for my hurts. Teo. Never get hit by a car. Worse, worse than being shot. okay, maybe not, but it still hurts. A lot"

Guest implies not Alexander. Guest implies Teo should be wary, by Le Rivage is very far away, the brownstone is closer, and he's pretending already that there is nothing really wrong with anybody who is seeing imaginary children from the ruin of a nostalgic future. That's normal. For him, that's normal.

Francois' car looks up, a sleek predatorially bullet-black silhouette resting almost demurely on winter treads and blizzard-thickened asphalt. It's a pretty nice ride, and probably would have hurt nearly as much as a sliding SUV if it had crashed bodily into a woman her size. Old man has a thing for cars. Who'dve thunk it? "It's a little decorated, but not very decorated. You may have all these things you desire, signorina." There's an electronic chirp when it answers the push of the remote-control key.

And he opens the door for her, releasing a whuff of buttery leather smell as well as a residual tinge of warmth. The bag goes in after her, wedged through the gap between shotgun's seat and driver's, tossed into the back. "I got some bacon cheap. Huge slices. It's not exactly baloney pie, but these things, probably have the caloric value of Swiftianly farmed fat Irish infant. I mean. They just look really good. They'll hold the insurance people back."

Here's the hard part, getting into Francois's vehicle. Which requires his help, hands and just dropping gently into the seat as best she can then tucking feet in. "Bacon" Whispered like the reverent meat that it is, that should be coveted right up there with the lord almighty and his risen son.

The thicker the better, slapped down beside eggs and on some higher plane than any baloney cake. "You know me so well Teodoro" There's that goofy smile, rising to the surface. "Bacon" She'll probably end up saying it all the way to Francois's home, up the steps and into the brownstone. Stop saying it when Teo feeds her more of her pills and helps her into the shower where she can get clean, with a little thought towards modesty, and get down to the business of sleeping off the worst of what happened in Queens.

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