Afternoon Delight


delia_icon.gif logan_icon.gif

Scene Title Afternoon Delight
Synopsis Delia sells her soul, for a chance to relieve her father of a debt and the scent of a Logan.
Date March 9, 2011

Fort Greene — Nick Ruskin's Apartment

Mr. Logan

Mr. Logan

Mr. Logan


They did.

He knows that she wants him, or at least to see him, so all there is left to do is wait. A few errands the day after her birthday leave her back at Nick's in the early afternoon, Toru has vacated the sofa and is off god knows where, possibly delivering food or whatever it is he does to get cash. Her room mate is someone to be admired, he fends for himself. The redhead just sort of holds out her hand and works where she can.

The aroma of ramen noodles permeates the air, the television is on some science fiction show about doctors in outer space who work with aliens, and Delia is sitting on the couch cross legged holding the small pot by the handle in one hand and a pair of chopsticks in the other. It's really the only way to eat ramen noodles. The temperature is ramped up to a comfortable 73 degrees, having no real heat on the island makes the young woman just take more advantage of it when she's got it. She's in a pair of basketball shorts and a light t-shirt. No shoes, no socks. On the table in front of her is an opened beer, one of Nick's supply.

The sudden rap of knuckle against the door has her head jerking toward it. Noodles half hanging from her mouth as she's interrupted midslurp, she finishes and wipes her face of any splatter with the back of her arm. She doesn't make a sound as she grabs her ipad and then tiptoes toward the door as she checks for messages. Slowly, she flips the lock back on the door and peeks out the crack, protected by only a small chain.

The man behind the door is automatically prepared to stride right in, but stops with a jerk half an inch at the sight of chain and the way the door doesn't give much more than a few. Pale eyes blink, cross to narrow at the silvery link, before looking beyond to take in Delia's face peeking out at him. Logan rocks back a step, reorientating himself, looking simultaneously overslept and sleepless in shadows beneath his eyes and a lazy kind of squint. A light patter of rain beyond the building makes darker dots on a blue cotton sweater beneath black leather jacket. A frivolous scarf of a different shadow of blue, lashed around his throat.

He looks beyond impatient, hollows at his jaw where molars grit together. The smile that presses afterwards is forced. "Open the door properly or I'll replace all the media on that contraption with child pornography."

"No peep hole," Delia explains sullenly as she closes the door again to unlatch the chain and then open the door wide. What greets Logan is a bachelor pad of the most stereotypical sense. A one room studio with a queen sized bed shoved against the far corner, a dresser flanking the wall at its foot. In the middle of that same wall a couch with folded bedding faces a large television, the coffee table in front of it playing host to a tiny pot of half eaten ramen and most of a beer. Pressed against the wall adjacent to the door is a small kitchenette separated by a small table and two chairs.

She waves him in and closes the door swiftly behind him, flipping the bolt and latching the chain once again for safety's sake. "I— I would have met you somewhere," she stammers, rushing to clear the table of the pot and chopsticks. Her stomach is in knots, it shows in her pale features. Still, she looks healthier than he last saw her, still thin but getting there.

In Delia's hand, the idle dulled screen of the iPad lights up bright, and before her eyes, icons shift, things open as if responding with a merry flutter of data at the technopath's presence. It's swiftly stolen from her fingers with a more physical grab as Logan moves on by her, giving bachelor pad a once over as the device in his hands doesn't really need to be looked at, browsed as fast as it takes to think. Though by some standards and depending on who you ask, Logan isn't quick witted in enough ways for this not to be impressive.

There's a twitch at his mouth as some sort of information is gleaned, and by the time he's done, pupils are constricting back to a more normal size than the blown black circles they just were. He's ignored her comment, about meeting him somewhere, apology or backhanded hint— either, really— gone missed.

"Beat me over the head with text messages again and I'll see how Cheza fancies things like this as a frisbee. Now where've you been and what is it?"

The pot is placed into the sink and left for later. Though it's very bad form (as a guest in the apartment) she pulls open the fridge and grabs another bottle from inside to offer as a trade for her iPad back. "The flu hit, I went back to help. I got sent back yesterday." Her tone when addressing the Briton isn't as awestruck or breathless as it has been in the past, there's a stronger edge to it. What is the same is when she nears, she takes a deep breath, her eyelids sliding down halfway as she pauses just long enough to give him the beer before retreating again.

"Sorry… I— " Her eyebrows knit into a frown and she looks away, clenching her jaw tightly. She doesn't finish, not straight away, instead she turns her back to him and strides across the room to grab her own beer and take a drink. "I can meet you somewhere, this place.. isn't the best for— talking."

"It's got beer."

Therefore. Not that bad. Some of that bristly irritation has ebbed, enough that rather tossing iPad wallwards, Logan sets it down on something flat and takes a swig of said alcohol, making a face and glancing at the label. "I caught that. Last year. Year before, I dunno. Pulled through with a bit've ability fuckery and the sniffles." What with having the constitution of an ox or— some such implication, chatty as he paces after her.

"You uncomfortable with me being here?" is more knife-like in contrast, accompanied with a narrowed look, the edge of a smile.

"It's worse this year, you've been vaccinated, right?" Her eyebrows knit together as she finally lifts her eyes to sweep them over his features, noticing for the first time how dark the circles are under his eyes. "They're dying and there's nothing we can do except try to make them comfortable." A small shake of her head would suggest that 'making them comfortable' is a mission of impossible standards.

Still, Delia motions to the sofa in invitation for him to sit. One of the corners is taken for herself as she folds her long legs up against her body and curls her toes over the edge of the cushion. "It's not my place to have company at. I'm just staying here until I find something."

After setting her beer on the table, she catches her lower lip between her teeth and holds it for a long moment. "Sorry about the text messages, I didn't have time to wait."

There is a sense that Logan isn't hearing everything he wants to, maybe due to what he knows— or does not know— from the workings of her telecommunications devices, but he leaves needling questions aside as he follows at a slower, lazier pace. The heat of the place makes leather jackets and scarves uncomfortable, but neither item is removed. He could invite her to walk, through the substantially cooler outdoors, but he only just got here, so, sinks into the couch instead, leather flagged open.

"Yeah yeah, I've gotten vaccinated. No use being fucking Registered if you can't get the perks." The apology is dismissed for all that he snarled at her for it, with a splay open of fingers, relaxing them again.

"I want to take my dad's favor to you," she says suddenly, getting right to the point of why she waylaid Logan with the barrage of texts in the first place. Her eyes sweep over his lanky form just before she adjusts her seat to face him on the couch, letting one leg down to touch the floor while the other is tucked underneath her. "I can be useful, I know I can." It's not the most impressive resume that's crossed his desk, most likely, but he already knows what she can do. Even if it's not the full extent of it.

"I can let you sleep, you don't look like you've been getting much of it." The small token of her ability is offered up without a smile, all serious expression and no glint of mirth in her eyes. Her arm finds the back of the sofa and she stares at it rather than him for the time it takes for acceptance or rejection, one fingernail tracing the twill of the cloth bath and forth for an inch or two as she waits.

He does remember a tiny porcelain dancer spinning in rain of green, or— that's the way he recalls it, for all that a giant eye made of streaming data can recall anything other than what it happens to set its focus on. Logan's mouth opens like he wants to deny this truth, but he stops, snags his words. Startled, almost, as he meets her serious stare even as it tracks away from him, a hand curling back to loosen and toy with the pashmina of the concealing scarf.

"I suppose I've a lot on my mind lately," he admits, tone dry, sloshing beer back and forth with a hand fidget. "But give your dad half a chance and I'm sure he'd do a good job of tucking me in at night and then some." A hand creeps along the back of the couch, past her's, touching where an auburn curl sits loose against fabric. "Dreamcatcher, is this a favour for me or for your father?"

"Both," the young woman admits, "and for me." His pale stare is held by her own as she looks back up at him, her lips twitching at one edge as she tries to smile but it comes off timid. "You need someone that you can rely on not to stab you when your back is turned. I won't. I haven't told anyone anything that I know…" Delia's jaw tenses for a moment, stopping herself from pleading a case rather than making a strong bargain. "I can do a lot more than just let you sleep, if you let me take the favor, just point me in a direction and I'll go."

There's a flip of her stomach as the redhead squints her eyes just a touch, studying his reactions to her words. "Think about it, I might be more useful than my dad." A small twitch upward of one of her shoulders seals it. "People have compared me to the Nightmare Man and I haven't done anything that she did. She's accidentally taught me things that she didn't mean to, I can use them for you…"

Mention of the Nightmare Man doesn't get flinched at. Not exactly. Just a hardness setting in behind his expression, uneasy. He has scars left over from the Nightmare Man and her influence over him, physically and maybe somewhere buried deep in a far away dreamscape, the black spot in the middle of the diamond mountain. Logan says none of this out loud, of course, simply weighs the idea as he takes a swig of beer, throat working around a gulp before he leans forward, sets the bottle down.

Now that his hands are free, they do nothing of immediate use, one resting on couch back, the other on one of his own thighs. "So you know something better of what I'm like," he says, with a lazy smile at the corners of his mouth. "And here we are." As a LINDERMAN NEGOTIATOR, he is somewhat effective at keeping temptation written out of his expression of cool study.

But only somewhat. "Worth a stay at the Corinthian, yes. But worth pissing off your circle of friends?"

"I've seen things." No mention of where or what, simply what it is. Tensing a little as the arm stretches her way, she shakes her head a little bit. "I don't want to stay at the Corinthian," emits in a low tone looking away from him and toward the television. It doesn't capture her interest as much as just give her something to stare at that isn't him.

"Everybody knows who you are," the murmur from Delia's lips only gets quieter as she continues to speak. Reaching to the side, she picks up her bottle and takes a drink from it before placing it back onto the table with a click. "If I ever wanted to find anyone, you would probably know. As for my circle of friends, they've stopped talking about you to me. It doesn't do any good." Possibly meaning that she's defended the negotiator to them. Until she was shown but that is another matter entirely and it's set to the side for now.

A few beats of silence pass. Hopefully, Logan spends this time thinking, rather than just watching her, though he's doing that too. The tension in her shoulders.

Then he moves. A rustle of denim and leather, scarf loose just enough to show throttle-like bruises from long, rough fingers, but it's the least of his worries for now, common vanity set aside with his brain wheels engaged in turning over other things as he goes to sit upon coffee table directly in front of her. Stealing choice, when it comes to looking away from him too easily. "I've something in mind," he admits. "Not right away or anything. But I know exactly how I could use to.

"I'm moving. Soon. Headed to Staten Island. I'm allowed as many dogs as I want, to coin a phrase, if you'd like to come with me. I won't bother your dad."

The blue and purple of the skin around Logan's throat catch her eyes first, he might have been able to divert Delia's attention from the television but he's given her something a little more interesting. Injury. Sliding to the edge of the cushion, she reaches up to pull away the scarf and trace her long fingers across the marks. Finally she does look up at him, eyebrows sunk low over hers setting her features into a displeased frown. "You got hurt again," Captain Obvious makes his appearance in her words.

"Promise me you won't bother him," as though just saying it just isn't enough. Her blue eyes find his pale green ones and she holds the stare, "I'd like to go with you. I can't get on Staten though, I'm not registered— would it matter?" The fact he's allowed to take as many dogs as he wants makes it seem that he's following someone else's orders. It also leads the redhead to believe that, indeed, it might not matter.

Well that's embarrassing.

Logan doesn't jerk away, flinch, slap her hand aside or anything so prissy — jaw locks and eyes roll as her fingers trace over the shadows of slow healing bruises but the touch itself is welcome, even at the cost of attention. Here's to hoping she doesn't have him dreaming a little dream about how he got those ones. His hand comes up and closes around her wrist, but doesn't actually push the touch away — just assumes some control of it.

"Don't worry about Registration," he assures her, without any pretense of 'oh yay' — his voice is dull, matter of fact. "I'll sort it. Just agree, and I promise," with sugar on top, potentially, "that I won't go near Mister Benjamin Ryans, or even bother from afar. If you come with me, and do as you promise."

Her wrist is loose, there's no fight back as Logan's fingers wrap around her arm. The fact he's sorting out her little problem with plastic is a bonus. Slipping off the sofa, Delia rises to a stand and looks down on him. Her fingers brush against his skin as they curl and close over her palm. "I will, tell me where to go and I'll be there."

Her breathing grows deeper, there can't be any doubt in his mind what she's doing but she doesn't get any closer. She's close enough. In someone else's apartment, a fact that has her closing her eyes and clenching her jaw tight. With a gentle twist of her wrist, she tries to slip out of Logan's grip, once again not looking him in the eye. She doesn't move away either, which might be a good or bad sign.

To dismiss, instead of be dismissed.

It is the sole reason that Logan's hand briefly latches tighter on her arm in her attempts to get away, but Delia finds freedom swiftly when Logan lets her go anyway, standing. With her gaze diverted, she can feel more than see him moving around her, all grace and motion to her hesitant stillness. Voice manifests somewhere behind and to the left of her, too close to her hair: "I'll be in touch." He doesn't push her. It would be bad form, in the wake of settled agreement.

He casts an eye around this place, as if judging whoever lives here whilst remaining ignorant to this knowledge, before sharp strides carry him for the door, proximity lessening in a way that's almost tangible. He's good at personal space, and abusing it.

"Text me if you want to sleep," she utters, finally turning her head to look over at him. Half of her face is hidden by the mane of red hair and Delia finally gives Logan a smile that's a little bittersweet. Then she nods once and her shoulders sag as she sinks back into the couch.

Before Logan makes it all the way to the door, she draws her knees up to her chest and hugs them. "I turned twenty one yesterday," she says in the same mild tone that he used while talking about registration. "If you needed to know when you fix things. It was nice to see you." Or smell him. "I'll have my iPad on all the time."

Business transaction, and Logan treats this like one now. No lingering in the door, or fond glances back, or even spiteful sarcasm. He lets himself out with efficient movements. "I shall. Happy Birthday," is the most he offers, designed to sum up consent, understanding and message received in clipped, British tones, all received pronunciation and a certain formality that, you know. Lovers don't share.

Former lovers perhaps not supposed to.

That the door shuts much harder than is strictly necessary is the only indication of anything amiss, and by then, it's too late, down the stairwell and soon out into the light city rain.

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