Call It Done


kain_icon.gif smedley_icon.gif

Scene Title Call it Done
Synopsis Wes Smedley fills an appointment to meet a potential business partner and finds more than he expected in dealing with Kain Zarek.
Date September 11, 2010

Shooters Bar and Bistro

A place that used to be a cafe and is making a slow progression towards being a dive bar. During the day, the balcony and a good portion of the sidewalk is taken up by outdoor chairs and tables, where people can enjoy a beer as well as a sandwich or whatever else is on their menu - a decent, if simply array of bar food. During the evening, unless it's a warm night, these are taken inside, and the kitchens are closed. A wide variety of beer is available, along with hard liquor and maybe a few wine labels, but nothing fancy. The interior decor is similar to traditional British pubs, with a hardwood bar and brick wall. There's an old pool table towards the back, along with a dart board. The building is actually two storeys high, but whatever is upstairs is inaccessible to the general public.

Drinks are on Kain Zarek tonight.

Late at night Shooters is the heartbeat of the Rookery. For all that the northern end of Staten Island is the Wild West of New York City, Shooters is the archetype of any old west saloon. Maybe that's why Kain Zarek chose to wear cowboy boots, maybe it's just because he hardly ever gets to dress casually. Faded jeans, a gray hooded sweatshirt to fend off the cold and a battered old brown leather jacket replace what normally owuld be pinstripe suits and patent leather shoes.

Seated in a booth up against one of the brick walls inside of the bar, Zarek has himself a table for two with a lowball glass of Whiskey sitting in front of himself, sweating on a napkin. Thumbing thorugh his cell phone, Kain offers a blue-eyed stare up to the front door whenever the bell chimes over the noise of jukebox music and a Saturday night's festivities.

While the weather is starting to cool down at night these days, the outside of Shooters is still busy when Kain Zarek's 10:00 appointment comes stepping up onto the front porch.

Tables and chairs, rough and rowdy clientelle and all the charm of any biker bar or dive is familiar to Wes Smedley. The Cajun who has come calling for this meeting, however, is a new friend in an incresingly unfriendly city.

Ironically, the boots that carry Wes Smedley through the doors of Shooters aren't traditional cowboy boots. They're just boots that have kicked their share of shit. His jeans are faded not because it's the style, but because they've been practically glued to his legs for months, and his dark t-shirt is starting to show signs of thinness. The night air that blows in after him disturbs the edge of his jacket, but anyone familiar with Staten Island's semi-resident ex-rancher knows well enough that the man is rarely without two revolvers slung across his hips. Some think it's a gimmick. Others think Smedley was never able to leave the west, even though he came east. In truth, they're just practical.

If it takes you more than twelve rounds to kill something, you've got no business shooting at it.

Smedley pauses for a moment by the door, scanning the room with gray-blue eyes. He's never met this Kain Zarek before, neither has he much information on what the man looks like. So when he narrows his eyes on the man sitting in the specified booth, it's with appraisal more than suspicion. There's no chinking of spurs as he makes he way over, and his gait isn't bowlegged. But there's something about the way he moves that wouldn't make such additions too far-fetched.

"Zarek?" he asks, his eyebrows raising slightly as he pauses by the booth, lifting his hands to tuck his thumbs in the tooled leather of the holster's belt.

Blue eyes flick to the guns holstered in the belt of the man approaching his booth, and Kain Zarek can't help but crack a smile. With a chin dusted in a graying five o'clock shadow, dimples and stringy blonde hair, Kain looks more at times like a roughed up fashion model than a criminal, but the Devil's smile he wears has a place in his line of work.

"Well hey there Hoss," Kain offers with a broad, toothy grin, "guess that makes you Wes Smedley now don' it?" A hand comes out, offered to Smedley without hesitation as Kain angles his head to the side, a few stray strands of blonde hair crossing his face. "Why don' you come on an' take a seat an' order yerself up somethin' nice t'drink an' we can get on down t'business. Ah' heard some things 'bout you, thought it might be high time t'do some networkin'."

Smedley's been called worse, but he still meets Kain's greeting with a strained sort of smirk, though his handshake is firm and business-like. He sits down, and when the waitress bustles her way around, he places an order for "Johnny Red, on the rocks," and it's only once he's got his drink in front of him and he's taken a healthy swig that he leans back with a sigh and even thinks about doing any sort of networkin'.

"You went to an awful lot'uh trouble to find me," he says with another appraising narrowing of his eyes. "I know you 'n Logan run'n the same circle, but why go through him? Why not use someone already on your payroll t'look me up?"

"Because this ain't a Linderman Group business deal," Kain notes with a wave of one of his hands, leaning forward to rest his arms on the table in front of himself. "Logan an' Ah' are doin' some side-business lately outside'a ol' Danny-boy's pockets. Ah've been runnin' an arms dealing business outta' this here island for about four years on now, an' mah suppliers got themselves shot up an' otherwise undesireably disappeared 'cause of some dumb decisions…"

Pushing his drink aside, Kaina rches one brow as he looks across the table to Smedley. "Ah'm lookin' t'build some new relationships. Ah' pushed six million last year in supplies an' all Ah' cut this year was jus' shy've a million. Now all'a that ain't linin' mah pocket, Ah've got middle-men t'pay off. Basic lay of the hand is that Ah've got buyers an' you've got guns, Ah move 'em and we split it fifty-fifty. Th' biggest competition on this here island's a feller called the Irishman an' he deals in the same hardware Ah' do, an' frankly if it weren't for mah former suppliers goin' under he wouldn't be a problem."

Rolling his tongue on the inside of his cheek, Kain looks down to the table. "How'd you feel 'bout joinin' mah network?" Blue eyes flick back up to Smedley and Kain quirks his head to the side. "It's good business, Ah' ain't gonna' ram you from behind, an' you ain't gotta see face t'face with the kinda' people that buy from me."

"What kind'uh arrangement are you lookin' to make, Zarek?" Smedley asks with a slight tilt of his head as he slowly spins his glass of scotch between thumb and forefinger. "I run a lot'uh merchandise for a lot'uh people," he continues, his brows knitting in the beginnings of a grave expression. Zarek may be a big-time Linderman stooge, but Smedley's the king of his own teeny corner of Staten Island, with very few exclusive contracts.

"Now, if you've got specific items you need, items that will make you, say, stand out over the Irishman's game, I can certainly be your man." Smedley leans forward, resting his forearms on the table and curling his other hand around the glass. "But if you're lookin' to buy up all the arms I bring in, then I reckon we'll have to negotiate a bit more."

"A little a'both worlds," Kain notes as he reaches for his Whiskey, lifting up the glass and rolling it around in one hand. "Ah' wanna' pick you your business like Ah' did for mah pervious business partners. Just the arms dealin', nothin' else. Whatever else it is you got goin' on Ah' don't want none of. Guns, ammunition an' military hardware's all Ah've got buyers for. Most've mah clients need specialty items, hard t'find things. Ah' got some contacts outside've the city for the really hard t'find things, but for the most part Ah' hear you run a lotta' what Ah' got."

Lifting both brows, Kain also lifts his glass, taking a swig from it as blue eyes regard his distorted reflection in the whiskey's surface. "As fer negotiations, Ah've got people at the port authority in mah pocket in Red Hook, paid up thorugh to next year with most'a th' pirates out on the coast…" Kain's blue eyes tick back up to Smedley. "Ah' can give you peace of mind in yer business… give you some new clients, an' in exchange we split the business benefits down th' middle."

Smedley is quiet for a few moments - long enough to take another hearty sip of the scotch blend in his own glass. "How's this," he says after the contemplative pause and loosening drink, leaning back against the booth's upholstery. "We go in for a month 'er two. End'uh the year even. And if havin' me in your little net turns that measly mil' into a number you're more accustomed to, then we can talk more."

It will give them both a chance to feel each other out and gain a little trust. It will also give Smedley the opportunity to see just how much he can slip to his other various contacts - contacts who need what he can bring into the city in terms of weaponry just as much as Kain's clients do - without his business partner knowing.

"Trial period," Kain notes as he looks down into the amber whiskey swirling in his glass, "that there's a real cautious business decision, Wes." When Kain's blue eyes flick back up to Smedley, there's a quirk of his head to the side and the raise of one brow. "Ah' think you'd be happy with th' way things play out, but Ah' un'erstand that this ain't the most conventional of business partnerships. Ah' treat mah people well, though, so's that they stay partners an' don't wind up anythin' otherwise."

Regarding his drink, Kain furrows his brows, then looks up to Smedley with a crooked smile, offering up his glass for what can only possibly be a toast. "You got yerself a deal, Cowboy. If there's a city left t'sell guns to after the eighth a'November rolls 'round, then we can see where we stand."

Squinting at his glass, Kain tilts his head to the side, then looks up to Smedley again. "One thing though," Kain adds as he moves his glass away from toasting distance. "Ah' like t'be right certain that mah business partners ain't gonna' run outta' down if somethin' is chasin' them. So you might see why Ah'm a bit cautious, after Ah' did a little diggin' 'bout yer name."

One of Kain's brows slowly lifts up. "Apparently there's some po-lice from back out west what want t'talk to you for questionin' 'bout some real bad news that went down on a farm. They ain't got a warrant out for yer arrest or nothin', but questionin' is some pretty heavy tones. That business ain't gonna' run you outta' New York, is it?"

It's all going so well, and Smedley even lifts his glass to meet Kain's.

But then that ever looming shadow looms just a little bit closer.

Smedley frowns, the lines around his eyes deepening and the muscles in his neck tightening to the point where the tendons strain against the skin. But the visceral reaction to the news is fleeting, and Smedley shakes his head with a nonchalant pout. "Not if I can help it," is his answer. Kain should be able to put two and two together to figure out that perhaps the reason why Smedley is as east as he can get without getting wet is because of whatever happened in that field back west. "But you could always tie up that loose end, now couldn't cha?" The Linderman Group has long arms, after all.

"That sounds like a favor," Kain notes with one brow kicked up and his glass settling down on the table-top with a thunk, "an' dependin' on what it is them fine law-enforcement officers wanna' ask questions about, it could be an expensive favor. But yer right, it ain't outta' mah ability t'make go 'way, it just matters how quickly you want it gone, how thouroughly you want it gone, an' just how much you think that help's worth t'ya."

Therein lies the Devil's smile again, maybe what Kain was angling Smedley for all this time. What's a good business partner if they're on an even footing? It's much better to do business with someone when they already owe you from the get-fo. "Why don' you think about just how badly you want that problem t'go away, an' don't worry yerself about how much it'll cost. After all, we're gonna' be business partners, on the trial period at least. What kinda' partner'd Ah' be if'n Ah' didn't look out fer' mah investments?"

Probably a better partner than he actually is.

An investment is certainly what it is, and Smedley doesn't expect to be treated any differently than other investments Kain Zarek may have. Maybe that makes him unique. He knows what he's getting into by crawling into bed with a man like Kain.

Still, he looks hesitant as he watches the other man from across the table. Then, with a decisive grunt, he shifts his weight to lean forward and clink his scotch against Kain's whiskey. "Call it done, then," he says before he tips his glass to drink deeply.

Both brows lifted and a smile spread across his lips, Kain quirks his head to the side just a moment as a smile flashes pearly-white across his stubbled mouth. "Call it done," the Cajun echoes of Smedley's words, lifting his glass up and drinking down the last of the whiskey before settling his glass down on the table top with a noisy clunk. "Ah'll talk t'someboy 'bout your troubles, Smedley, an' you can consider them as good as gone. Monday Ah'll get you the names of mah buyers an' the orders Ah've got waitin' t'go out…"

Leaning back in his seat, creasing the leather of the bench behind him, Kain folds his hands in his lap and crosses one leg over the other. "Ah've gotta' hand it t'ol Johnny Boy, he sure did a good job on this one. Ah'll have t'give him a patt on th' ass for all'a th' good work." Then, grimacing and looking down at his empty glass Kain amends his thought.

"On second thought, maybe jus' a handshake."

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