Good Luck


felix_icon.gif bebe_icon.gif

Scene Title Good Luck
Synopsis Unfortunately, it takes more than luck to find someone lost on Staten Island.
Date February 21, 2009

Sheung Wan Kitchen

It's not just the large selection that makes Sheung Wan Kitchen special - it's the quality, the sights, the atmosphere, and the friendly service. This is a very small restaurant with only a handful of seats in front of a large, flat counter where meals are prepared in full-view by some of the Rookery's more knowledgeable chefs. Stacked high against the far wall are wicker baskets full of dried sea creatures, mystery animal parts, deer antlers, wine with whole king cobras, heaps of herbs and twigs and tree barks. Although these are meant to go into the dishes that are served here, it is not impossible to haggle for them.

A large chalkboard behind the counter advertises the kitchen's special menu, though some items are more difficult to read than others. Most popular is the Tree Lizard Soup - cooked with yams, Chinese dates, ginseng, medlar, and something called tragacanth, which is reported to be good for asthma, colds, lungs and the heart.

Fel is brave. Foolish. You knew that. But both qualities are required to order a hearty meal in here. He's suffering from a cold, apparently - he's coughing to himself, as softly as he can, as he works his way through what's pretending to be a bowl of hot and sour soup. It hasn't complained, ignited, or demanded to know why he didn't read it its Miranda rights, so the taste can be ignored. He's in drab clothes, but not so ragged as look immediately homeless - there's the glitter of stubble on his jaw, and of something approaching fever in the blue eyes.

For the last five or six minutes, there've been a pair of oddly familiar brown eyes peering over at Felix from a table not too far away — honestly, any of the tables in here could be considered 'not too far away' because this place isn't that big — but since they're not attached to a stack of money, then it's safe to say that the Federal agent isn't being stalked by the money he could be saving on car insurance by switching to Geico. No. In fact, Bebe's probably the person who manages to deprive more men of that windfall more often than not. She's hovering over a bowl of the house specialty but her fingers are currently occupied in carefully rotating the blue-and-white patterned china bowl that currently hosts a heaping pile of sticky rice.

The blue eyes that meet hers are bloodshot, to say the least, as he squints at her momentarily over his soon-to-be empty bowl. He doesn't greet her. Is it even polite to notice a working girl when she's off-duty? But he does meet her gaze, for a moment, and nods, before glancing away, lest it turn into the creepy stalker stare.

While Bebe really isn't the sort to pry, she can't help but feel compelled to pick up her bowls of soup and rice — one in each hand, like offerings — and relocate herself to Felix's table in order to inquire in a casually conversational tone, "Not feeling well?" Her eyes then bounce down to the tabletop so that she might be able to more easily assess the nutritional value of the man's meal. "You should have some tea."

Fel just blinks at her. "I have been," he says, mildly, as if teenage hookers were solicitous of his welfare on a regular basis. But he does lift a hand to wave over what passes for waitstaff.

Bebe doesn't do anything nearly so impressive as to order in Chinese — she has no real working knowledge of either Mandarin or Cantonese — but she speaks up before Felix might have a chance to and says in his stead, "Ginger tea, please." And then she smiles brightly across the way at the fevered Fed. See? Tea!

"Thank you," he says, in a decidedly rusty voice, still blinking at her as if not sure she's a hallucination or not.

"You're welcome," she says, chipper. Remarkably upbeat for someone who does what she does for a living. During a few awkward moments, Bebe decides to do nothing but sip her soup and stare at Felix as though at any moment he might pop out of existence like a soap bubble. Then, she asks, "How's your friend?"

"What fr- oh. The blonde guy? Okay, I guess. He's not my friend," Fel adds, in a string of not entirely sequitur syllables. He's done with his own soup, and shoves the empty bowl off to be taken away.

The noise that comes out of the teenaged whore's mouth isn't at all unusual from what might be her nightly repertoire of ambiguous noises. "Mmm," she notes with one little brown brow jutted upwards. The soup must be very good. "You paid an awful lot of money so that someone who wasn't your friend could sleep in my bed," she says.

"I owe him a lot," Felix says, laconically. "And that didn't extend to having him get murdered by knife wielding thieves in a dark alley." The waiter brings over the tea, which Fel slops into the accompanying cup with something less than ceremonial grace.

Bebe doesn't seem apt to take offense to Felix's sloppy tea-pouring technique. She's still got soup to sip and rice to eat and tea of her own that she — oh, right — left back at her table. She eyes the lonesome little cup longingly for a moment before she suggests gently, "You should go home. Get some rest." Escape hell while he still can.

"I intend to," he says, sounding almost demure. Which is clearly very odd, on him, anyhow. He wipes rather uselessly at the mess on the table, and manages to get most of it up.

Unable to resist the compelling lure of curiousity, Bebe finds herself asking, "What brought you out here, anyways?" before she can think twice about it. Hm. She must really want to know, despite the overly casual tone of her voice.

The smile he gives her is oddly boyish, almost shy. "I'm looking for a lost friend. A girl who heals. Name's Abby," he says, as he sips from the tea, after making sure it won't scald his mouth.

Oh, damn, hi. Bebe isn't savvy enough to hide the recognition in her big, brown eyes and she almost chokes on the spoonful of soup brought up to her lips. But, still, she persists in false innocence that looks very little like the real thing. "I— erm… hope you find her." She watches Felix now much more suspiciously, sly and to the side while she becomes intensely occupied with her bowl of rice. "What makes you think she's out here?" Besides that fact that Staten Island is pretty much where every missing person manages to end up eventually, present company included.

Fel makes a little vague gesture, turning a palm like he's flipping over a tarot card. "Rumors. This and that. And where else would the lost ones end up? Besides, there's an obvious use for her power in that fighting ring." He doesn't appear to have noticed her reaction. "Heard anything?"

"Mmmmno," the wee tart murmurs into her bowl of soup, eyeing the dregs of what is very likely lizard at the bottom of the dish as if she suddenly found her meal extremely unappetizing. In fact, she might even be getting sick as we speak. She abruptly stands up and says, "I'm sorry. I should really get going. If I don't get back…" Short fingers fumble through her pockets and she withdraws a small wad of singles, sorting some out in order to settle her bill and leave a subjectively generous tip in her wake.

When eyes are that pale, light falls all the way to the back of the iris. And sometimes that clarity is disturbing. Fel watches her go without a murmur of objection or farewell. Just that present, vibrant curiosity. Like she's some sort of unknown microbe under the scope. He doesn't follow, however, remaining in his seat as if he intended to loiter for a bit.

Before Bebe can make a clean getaway, she pauses at the corner of the table and offers Felix what sounds like a genuinely sincere sentiment: "Good luck." But, once those two words fall out of her mouth, she's making her way out with a quickness and fleeing for the sanctuary that might be found within the ill-reputed walls of the brothel housed right next door.

February 21st: Curiously
February 21st: Crazy People
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