Alternate Reality Demise


lancaster_icon.gif vincent_icon.gif

Scene Title Alternate Reality Demise
Synopsis Lancaster finds Vincent so that she can refuse to talk about something.
Date September 4, 2011

A Dive Bar

You know the type.

Historically 'a bar' is not the first place most people would look for Vincent Lazzaro. Nevermind 'a dive bar on a shitty corner of Chelsea,' where he is currently finishing the process of pissing into a dirty urinal with a cigarette poked from the corner of his mouth and a beer in hand.

In his free hand.

Dim lighting and corroded mirror play silent witness to the process of him fumbling his pants closed; Queen thumps low through a jukebox on the other side of the door. There are not many people here. Sunday night, and all.

Outside the night sky is clear and the wind is cool enough to justify the light knit of his hoodie. Long sleeves pushed up past his wrists, perhaps optimistic about the force with which he is capable of peeing.

It might have taken Lancaster longer, had he skipped town.

But he hasn't.

And so she appears mid-stream, as it were, after the door creaks open and shut again, cigarette smoke trailing in and instantly cloying in the air which is possibly an improvement. Dive bar bathroom smell is something that can only be improved in overriding it, and she's halfway through her's, clenched near the knuckle in her hand. If she were closer, a well-kept leather jacket has its own scent, but you know, Vincent is busy and she keeps her distance by leaning against the door once she's in.

And goes like this -> :D when he looks over.

Absorbed, as it were, in his new natural(?) environment, Vincent zips up, flushes and turns with a bit of sway (swish, if we're being entirely honest) to the sinks. Disinterested in who or what else might be coming in or out of the Men's (MEN'S) Room, he's nearly there when a glimpse of peripheral familiarity in the mirror blanches his face white and then the whole of him pitchily black. An octopus flinch, jetted ink furling uncertainly in place a beat before it resolves abruptly back into 5 feet and 8 inches of Lazzaro looking hard, hard at Lancaster past the blink of orange at the end of his smoke.


This emphasis is made more so with the stab of the cigarette in Vincent's direction, a slight scattering of ash to go along with the gesture. "It's creepy, legit. And now you know." The more you do. Lancaster isn't relinquishing her lean against the door, even if she is only blocking it in symbol as opposed to practicality — she's trusting the weight of her stare to keep him in place, even if there is zero about her that is hostile.

More than normal, anyway. "If you're worried, don't be, I'm the only competent person left in the whole government."

Adrenaline rush muffled out into a slow expulsion of breath that looks and sounds a great deal like a sigh, Vincent is still a little stiff where he stands, bristle — appropriately bristled and knuckles white around the neck of his beer. Brown glass. Blue label. Bud Light?

"Okay," he says, at length, suspicious by nature and also by probable cause, given their respective fugutive statuses. IE he is one and she. Isn't. "Fair warning, though," he dips his cigarette away to tap the end off on the floor and gestures dimly at the door she's leaning against, eyebrows lifted. Serious eyebrows. 'Warning' eyebrows.

"I will have sex with you in here."

"Noted. Am I giving off a musk or something?"

It's not quite objection from Lancaster, her own eyebrows hiking up in return before she brings up her cigarette to breathe from, exhausted out again through flaring nostrils. "It's probably the new Mariah Carey fragrance I shared an elevator with this morning. Would you do me in jail?"

Is she? Vincent sniffs once before he looks her up and down, inebriated enough to be briefly perplexed in the midst of his puffing up in this shitty little bathroom. Also: Mariah Carey has a fragrance? Does it smell like Mariah Carey?

Sip. The cigarette's plugged back in also. He has not washed his hands yet, scar tissue seamed thick around his exposed forearm. "Well." Well. "I don't plan on going," he informs her with the kind of care that suggests he's put genuine thought into the question, "but yes."

A better question is: how would Lancaster even know?

There's a shrug at this answer, finding it ultimately satisfying, cigarette left alone once more to burn in its own liesured pace, arm left neglected at her side. "I'd have to get back to you on either of those two things, but the sentiment's flattering. How's it going, Vince?"

How does Lancaster know that Vincent is in this bathroom?

How does Lancaster know a lot of things.

Feathers smoothed enough that he's able to show the portion of his back to her that's necessary to turn and wash his hands, he sets his beer aside on a patch of counter space that's less wet than the rest of it and bumps the water up to a warm rush. "Living the dream," he tells her, "surrounded by oversexed 20-something terrorists and their floppy boyfriends."


Gross. Although maybe not as much as having sex here, not something Lancaster feels the need to impress upon him as she continues to keep him in her sights, focusing on his back and eventually leaving her post at the door. "You see anything else?" This comes out of context, she knows, but she doesn't immediately clarify, nor can she divine some better way to put it. "Anything that makes you feel like you made the right kinda decision, when you get out of bed in the morning and climb your way over nubile terrorist orgy bodies?"

"And girlfriends," Vincent adds, quietly, resignedly politically correct and mostly to the sink in the wake of Lancaster's assertion of youth. Also out of context. Or extremely relevant, depending upon precisely how deep her government omnescience runs.

Relevant to nothing they've actually acknowledged or discussed, let's say, faucet bumped off again with the back of his hand once he's rinsed away filmy suds. There he's left to stand dripping, hands out, while he looks down across one shoulder and then the other. Paper towels are… nowhere. There are none.

"I'd have to sleep to bother about bed," he says only once it's clear that he's run out of props to procrastinate with, "but I think so."

"I don't dream much."

Lancaster takes that moment to prop-procrastinate herself, drawing in a breath of smoke, although it comes out again soon enough between words as she continues; "I mean, sometimes. Usually about that dogs playing poker painting except I'm there and you were there and so was Nixon and John Wayne, or whatever, and that's basically all I remember in my long career of sleeping like a baby. But then there's the one where I fucking die, and it's kind of how I figured it would be.

"New development, sort've." At least she isn't batting an eye at girlfriend, because even her limits of all knowledge— exist.


Prophecy of one's own death is one of those things Vincent would have nodded and evenly ordered a psych eval for five years ago, along with reports of hearing voices or being telepathically compelled to commit a crime. Tonight, in 2011, it drains lingering irony from the lines around his eyes and forces him to look at her, forced sobriety steeled in deliberately from the neck up.

His posture leaves something to be desired, but he does manage to flick the remnant stub of his cigarette into the nearest urinal on his first try. "Do you want to talk about it?"

That question. It's not a wrong thing to reply with, and Lancaster isn't inclined to abuse him for it. It stands to reason that she tracked him down to the square foot to blab about her death dream that maybe she has more to say about it. But when it's put like that

Her nose wrinkles as if confronted with a bowl full of vegetables, glancing longways down her body as she taps smoldering ash onto the greasy tiles, avoiding her boots to do so. "I was more thinking along the lines about if you're too drunk or nobly angsty to not-sleep with me, which according to some of the best medical profressionals out there, is the unhealthy equivelant. I can talk if you're curious."

Eyebrows up.

It's not the wrong question, but it is an odd one for Vincent Lazzaro, who looks awkward asking it, brows knit, beer back in hand, athletic shoes braced wide apart. There are lines smeared clean across the tile between his feet, grime displaced by the damp tread of one shoe. His shoulders are uneven but open. Uncharacteristically unguarded, as apathy eventually begets a certain lack of awareness.

He's only just trying to puzzle at the way her nose wrinkles when she starts talking and he has to decipher possible double-negatives instead. Too drunk to — not-sleep with. His brow hoods deeper still over dark eyes, lower jaw hinging into the start of a hazily defensive jut. Nobly what. "I'm — allowed to drink and be curious about your alternate reality demise without implied baggage," he decides importantly, after taking time to confuse himself more than he was already confused. "Aren't intrigue and danger supposed to make people horny, anyway?" Hollywood seems to think so.

"Sounds like work. We're not doing it here."

Just so we're clear.

Lancaster flicks the cigarette to filthy ground where it is probably damp and gross enough on its own to not warrant the crush out via boot heel, but she does anyway in force of habit. "It doesn't matter. It didn't feel soon. So." That's kind of like when a death in the family happened long enough ago that it doesn't matter, right? "Just sort of like this." And it's not entirely unfamiliar to Vincent, the wash of inner warmth that rises feverish to his skin, and it's not some trigger off of pleasant happy-making chemicals or the alcohol in his belly but blunt and firestarting, though naturally—

It ends before it can even encroach on being a dangerous level, Lancaster flicking her attention away rather than solely relying on her own control.

It's a mark of trust that Vincent tolerates being held under her magnifying glass without retreating into intangibility. Also inflammability.

Not that being set on an invisible burner makes him happy. The sketchy line of his jaw hardens and his glare blacks into pitchy warning — the kind of look run down dogs have about them when someone won't let them enjoy their buzz lie and they're tired of being nice about it. Not funny.

"We're all going to die," he observes, generally, normally, and not angstily in the least. Then he sips his beer. "I didn't really want to do it in here anyway." Speaking of lying.

A bit funny. When it's someone's pants or newspaper. Not when it's their whole body, probably. So. Point taken.

"I know." And she sounds minutely— and actually, as opposed to ironically— annoyed at this reminder. Military related pride, perhaps. "And if shit changes, I die sooner or I die later. I guess I'm just pissed that I'm gonna be going through it twice." There. There, says the shrug of Lancaster's slouchy shoulders, continuing to brandish her attention about the place while she masters again her power, only a brief bubble and crackle of paint on a wall before it's all done.

Her shoulders roll back, a slight crack of her spine following. "So my next move was to kidnap you. Unless you're keen on racing your tab. I'm game, obviously."

"Well," says Vincent, "I'm sorry that you died." This is also a normal, supportive thing to say within context, such that he must be practicing in all the free time he's had lately.

The truth of personality is in the way he's looking at himself in the blotchy mirror when he says it, voice too out of focus to be especially sincere. Of greater immediate concern than psychologically damaging dreams of horrible burning death is the fact that his scars are showing — a last second double-take has him preening his sleeves back down where they belong while Adrienne works to avoid setting everything on fire.

Especially the things that are him.

Even if he deserves it most.

"I can drink more. Probably." Without overdosing and having to be sorry that he died, too.

It's probably the fact that Lancaster has rolled Vincent into bed upon a little too much booze once or twice in the past that has her squint indecisively somewhere above his head. Not that she hasn't either. It is usually a sort of simultaneous thing.

But beer comas don't portend less dreams, and so she sort of. Tosses her head in a gesture of nah, turning her back on him and making for the door. "I got a car outside. I don't think you're allowed to call cabs, anymore, in this city." Of course, if he doesn't follow, he doesn't have to, and it's on him — Lancaster is fairly expecting he will, at least, taking a long-legged step outside and pantomiming the doing up of her jeans so that anyone rubbernecking gets a story to share.

There are fewer people in the bar now than there were to start with, which explains the lack of interruption. And as Lazzaro's paid in cash, no close out is necessary. He catches and holds the door open for her, trailing out into into the bar space in search of a trash can to ditch his bottle into. Oblivious to the show she puts on; a crash of glass to glass in a plastic barrel marks his indirect progress for the exit after her. Technically he's not allowed to drink beers anymore in this city either.

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