ash_icon.gif melissa3_icon.gif

Scene Title Handyman
Synopsis Ash plays handyman at Melissa's new house.
Date April 21, 2010

Little Green House

It's miserable and, despite it being afternoon, it's in the low single digits so it's freezing out. Yet there are still a few people wandering around outside. And one of those people is a miserable looking Melissa, bundled up, a bandage on her right hand, carrying several bags of…stuff. Who knew Home Depot was still open with this weather? Though they're probably making a killing right now with busted pipes and heaters.

Walking along this section of Staten Island, Mel looks like she'd rather be anywhere else, preferably on some warm tropical beach somewhere. But instead, she's here, muttering to herself.

Ash just happens to be on this part of Staten island as well, odd how those things work. His pace is rather slow and sedate, not hurrying anywhere, maybe just out for a walk in the freezing cold. He's got an addition to his clothing that Melissa wouldn't have seen before, a red scarf tied around his wrist, bits of red material visible from the cuff of his coat. His eyes lift from following the sidewalk, only to find a burdened Melissa. Laughter leaves his mouth and he moves over to the other side of the street, pushing through the snow, to come over and try to help Mel with her bags, offering his hands out.

Melissa pauses when she sees him, eyeing him warily. But she's not against accepting a little help, and she gladly thrusts two of the heavier bags at him. "Thanks. Sure you're not stalking me? Trying to get on my good side or somethin' so I'll stop walkin' out on you?" she asks, resuming her walk.

Ash takes the bags with no issues, even transferring them both to one hand, leaving his left one free. He turns to fall in step beside her, only to turn and cough into his shoulder opposite from her, a few coughs and then nothing before he turns back. "Sorry about that, weather's sort of getting to me." He smiles some, then his head is given a quick shake. "Nope, not stalking you. But, with you living out here now… shouldn't be any surprise we keep running into each other." Ash seems… happy, almost bubbly… for Ash anyway. His steps even have a light spring to them as he strolls along.

That bubbly attitude has Melissa eyeing him again. "Never said I lived out here. And what the hell's got you in such a good mood? You get laid or somethin', Ash?"

Ash glances over and arches a brow slowly at her. "Yeah, you said you got a house out here. What a week ago? In Shooters you mentioned it…" He blinks a few times, peeing at the ground as if he's not so certain now that she did. A loud snort and a simple "Wouldn't that be fucking nice." Is his response to the question about getting laid. "Did a little of that good I mentioned, making shit better for our kind." He also doesn't seem willing to discuss that particular subject in further depth out in public. "So… what's with all of the junk?" He asks, lifting his bags up to indicate them.

"I did?" Melissa says, brow furrowing a bit. "Don't remember. But this is all stuff to try and fix up my house a lil' so it's liveable. Can't really move in until I've got heat and plumbing. And no way is a repair guy gonna come out here in this weather so…gotta do it myself." Her eyes slide over towards him, brow arching. "Unless you wanna help me out a lil'?"

Ash nods his head firmly when she asks him if she did, confirming that she did… he thinks. He glances over to her, listening as he walks, see men can do two things at once. "You can, it's just not very convenient, trust me. You can though." He flashes her a quick smirk before he dodges around a patch of ice beneath the snow, having watched someone else stumble on it moments before. "I have nothing else to do today, I suppose I can be your handyman."

"Awesome. Got some beer at the house. And there's probably a pizza left over too. It's cold, but there's nothing wrong with cold, next day pizza, right?" Melissa asks, smiling faintly. "And no, I can't. If it was just me, yeah, I could handle it. Even just me and my dog. But got this kid who's stayin' with me. Can't ask him to live in a heat-less house when the temp doesn't wanna get into double digits."

A short little snicker escapes him at the talk of the pizza. "No, nothing wrong with cold pizza at all. Long as it's edible and not frozen solid." He flashes her a bit of a cheeky smile, the expression pulling at the scars on his left cheek. "Oh… yeah, that kind of makes it hard to live there like that…" So, he walks along with her, silent for the moment, other than the occasional cough or two into the shoulder of his coat again, letting her lead the way to her home.

"I can't promise it won't be frozen solid," Melissa says, shrugging. Then she's giving him a more intense look. "You're not comin' down with the 510, are you? The evo flu? 'Cause if you are, you prolly shouldn't be out running around in the cold."

"I promise you that I am indeed not coming down with the evo flu. The exact opposite in fact…" She may or may not have heard about the raid on the vaccine truck the night before, but vaccines do usually give someone mild symptoms before they pass. "I also have something for you…" He murmurs softly, his eyebrows furrowing in thought about something. A moment latyer though his face clears of the thought and he's simply walking along with her. "Well, if you want to stop by my place quick I have a space heater that I used when I was crashing in an abandoned house here on the Island. It's a little worse for wear but… it'll do the trick."

Melissa may not have heard about the raid, but she's had the vaccine herself, and she pauses, eyes narrowing slightly. "Got the vaccine, did you? Well, good for you," she says, before she starts walking. "I've got some space heaters already. They're making it bearable while I fix stuff up. Thanks though."

She pauses at a little iron gate set into a stone retaining wall and leading to a short set of stairs. "This is it," she says, opening said gate and motioning for him to head on up."

Ash shrugs his shoulders indifferently when asked if he got the vaccine. He turns at the gate that's indicated, walking up the path towards the house, nodding appreciably. "So what all do we have in these bags?" He asks, looking into them as he walks up to the front stoop/porch if there is one, or just the front door if not. "Hey, I offered yah know?" Being the space heaters. He waits at the door for her to open it up then, shifting from foot to foot in an oddly… young fashion. But then? Ash is only in his mid twenties, he is still pretty young.

"New locks. Stuff that I think will fix the heat, some stuff for the plumbing…Not sure what half of it is, to be honest, but the book said I need 'em, so I got 'em," Melissa says, shrugging and opening the door. Apparently it wasn't locked. "Welcome to the casa de Melissa."

Ash takes a few steps inside, looking around the place, his eyes traveling slowly. He walks in the general direction of the kitchen, then stops. "What plumbing has gone bad? Or do you even know? Should we be starting in the basement?" He lifts an eyebrow questioningly, then waits to hear where he needs to be going to. "And yes, I did get the vaccine." And if she were to look closer, the man has some scrapes and bumps, his forehead is scraped, though that's actually from the fight at Center Stage recently, but his knuckles and hands are a bit scuffed up as well.

There's a faint grimace at the mention of the basement, but Melissa nods. "That's where the furnace is, so I guess it couldn't hurt. And I don't know jack. I'm operating on best guess. The plumbing…The pipes in the basement are frozen solid, so I'm guessin' that has something to do with it. So I figured…start with the heat so the pipes will thaw out."

Ash listens to all of that, and he sighs, his head hanging a bit before he nods. He walks into the kitchen though, putting the bags up on the counter, and he begins to sort through the things that she has on hand, piling them into different groups. When he's done he puts all of the stuff that will help him with the heating in one bag. "Got basic tools?" Meaning hammer wrench stuff like that, unless that stuff was in the bags that is. He picks up the bag for the heating, then puts it back down and shrugs his way out of his big wool coat, the red bandana on his wrist, looped around it plainly visible now. The coat is hung over the counter or a chair, or anywhere he can put it really.

Melissa nods and moves into the living room, bringing back a brand new red toolbox with said tools in them, setting it on the table as well. "You know about this stuff then? Fixing stuff, I mean?"

Ash nods his head a little bit to the question. He picks up the toolbox and the bag of stuff then. "Yeah. I used to work in a dojo. Lived with the instructor, and worked in his dojo to pay off living with him and receiving lessons. Did a lot of maintenance work for him." He turns and then stops. "Uhh… basement?" He asks curiously, a curious look on his features as he waits to see where the basement is.

Melissa points to the door leading downstairs, then grabs a lantern and takes a moment to light it. "No lights," she explains with an apologetic smile. "But glad someone knows what they fuck they're doing."

Ash watches the lantern get lit and he snickers a little bit, but his head dips and he makes his way to the door, pulling it open and he moves down the stairs, light steps as he moves. At the bottom he stops and turns his head, to look back up over his shoulder, waiting for Melissa to follow him down. "Well, I can't promise to be able to fix the shit, but I can do my best. A big part will be getting the heat fixed. Once that's done you'll have to wait for it to thaw the pipes and shit before I can work on the plumbing. So… it might be a day or so before it's ready to be worked on. But, I can work on other stuff in that time."

Melissa is just a few steps behind him, nodding as he explains. "I can be patient. Very patient," she murmurs. "And thanks for the help, Ash. I could probably get this stuff fixed…eventually. But I wanna be able to live in my house, yanno?"

Ash takes a look around the basement before his eyes spot the furnace, and he moves over that way. The tools are set down, as well as the stuff from the bag. He unbuttons his button up shirt, pulling that off and folding it up carefully to put it out of the way so it doesn't get dirty. He opens up the furnace, and leans into it a bit. "Can you bring the light closer?" He asks softly, thought he sound echoes inside of the furnace as he starts to poke around. "And it's not a problem. Hell, I get pizza in return so what can I complain about?" Soft laughter escapes him, echoing oddly.

Melissa moves over towards him, glancing at one of the walls, one that's red brick instead of cinder brick, then she sets the light down next to him. "Beer too. Don't forget the beer," she reminds him with a hint of a smile. "Still. After our last meeting, I didn't figure you'd wanna see me again, much less help me."

Ash grunts into the interior of the furnace before he comes back out. He picks up a few random odds and ends, pulling them out of packaging and stuff, then picks up a few hand tools before he leans back into the furnace. "This is actually a pretty simple fix… just will take some time. And… I understand having a bad fucking day and stuff. Just pissed me off. I got over it." He grunts, then curses at something after hissing in pain. His poor white t-shirt? is already smudged with soot and carbon as he digs around in the guts of the furnace. "And beer sounds good too."

Melissa snorts softly. "Bad month's more like it," she mutters, leaning up against the wall, folding her arms over her chest. "Simple fix is good. Maybe I'll actually have some luck and it'll all be simple fixes. Though I doubt that."

Ash mumbles something about bad life in his case, and continues moving about. A loud curse follows a heavy bang as he cracks his head on something in there. But, when he comes out, there's some crumbled hunks of metal in his hand and he nods his head. He dumps the bits in the bag, and then goes back into the furnace. "You'd be surprised how many things are simple fixes like this and people just don't know. Then you call a guy and he charges you out the ass to fix it…"

"Not really surprised. I mean, how much work does it really take to unclog a toilet or like, change the brakes on a car? Yet they make bank on that shit," Melissa says, shaking her head. "I'm just glad my repairman works for pizza and beer," she says, actually grinning.

Ash pulls his head out of the furnace, coughing some and shaking his head clear of dust and soot. He lifts a hand, running it back through his hair, then groans as he realizes he's just streaked it with black soot. He sighs and then looks up at the grin, a faint bit of laughter escaping him, light and soft. "Cars I don't really know anything about, so couldn't tell you there. I just know this stuff… a good deal of first aid and well… other… skills…" A smirk is flashed towards her, then he's back in there. Occasionally he comes back out with metal parts that are old and worn, and he puts in new ones. The entire process seems to be a pretty lengthy one.

"I know first aid, but that's as far as I get with fixing anything," Melissa admits. "What sorta other skills though?" she asks curiously, studying the pile of old parts.

There's a tortured squeal of metal before a victory cry from Ash and a grin. He comes back out with a twisted bolt and sets it down. "And that, no ordinary repairman could have gotten undone, trust me." He grins triumphantly, then goes back into the furnace, this time though he's leaning back against it, and snaking up into it, his back arched and body stretched a bit to get where he needs to get. "I am nearly as good as any pro fighter with kick boxing, but I've mixed my style up. I'm… pretty good with general combat stuff. I'm a wiz at math, and general school stuff. I loved school. I was…" He grunts, and then there's a squeak as something is moved around. "Quite a scholar in high school. Always got picked on, which is why I started taking the kick boxing lessons after my Mom and Dad… passed…" There's a bit of hesitance when he says that.

"They couldn't have? Why not? I thought you were just at human max, not super strong," Melissa asks, bending down to pick up the bolt, turning it over in her fingers. "Never liked math myself. Or school period, for that matter. I was the rebel in school. I would've been the one picking on you."

Ash nods his head slowly to the question, not that she can see it with him inside of the furnace. "Yeah, and I had to use quite a bit of damn strength to get that to loosen, which means that your average repairman, wouldn't have had the muscle to get it done. They'd have had to bring in a recip saw, and a small one, to get it off." He chuckles a little bit. "Until I started fighting back. Freshmen year is when I started taking lessons. Junior year is when I started using them on people that picked on me. I'd only ever hit back in self defense, but… people stopped picking on me fast. Also by that time i had worked out a lot and bulked up, wasn't some scrawny kid anymore." There's the sound of metal grating on metal before ash comes out, settling onto his knees and coughing, a bit extra for all the crap he's inhaled in there. "Got about half of the work done." he mutters.

Melissa's quiet for a moment, before she shrugs. "Moot point anyway. Didn't meet you in high school. Be right back." She drops the bolt back to the floor and heads up the stairs, returning a minute later with an ice cold beer, which she offers to him. "Here, help clear your throat."

Ash goes through another coughing fit while she is upstairs, but seems to be okay when she gets back down. The beer is very thankfully taken with a softly murmured thanks, and then he knocks back a good hefty swallow of it, letting the cool liquid slick his throat. He pulls in a slow breath, then lets it out again before looking down at himself with a grumble. "Hell's fucking frozen over out there and I'm actually managing to sweat down here…" He looks up and shrugs his broad shoulders before he turns around, remaining on his knees as he bends over and delves into the furnace once more. "It is, but still… You grow up here? I lived in Queens for most of my life."

Melissa shakes her head, leaning against the wall again. "Only been here since February. Thank god. I think this city is cursed for me. I grew up in Georgia. Don't tell me you didn't notice the southern accent," she says with a faint smile.

Ash roots around a little bit more inside of the furnace before he comes out of it and takes another long swig of his beer. "I noticed, but you could have picked that up from southern parents, or have been born here, lived there awhile and picked it up. Never know." He comments before he disappears again. "I can't say I love this city, but it's home and shit. Though I've thought about leaving a lot… there's too much to do here. This is where everything is happening." He comes out once again and nods his head. "All done for the time being. Will need you to pick up a few things later, but it'll work for now… if you want to kick it on and start heating this place up."

"If it's working, why will I need more stuff for it? But yeah, we can turn it on. I'm tired of freezing my ass off here while I clean. Got the fireplace mostly cleaned out, at least the one on the first floor, but fireplaces are not furnaces."

Ash looks up towards you as he lifts the hem of his shirt to wipe his face clean of soot, cleaning… some off. "Because there's stuff that will need replacing soon, it already does, but you don't have the parts. However, it will run right now as is rather than waiting on those parts. I can always come back and shit. I'll give you my cell number so you can call me." He finishes off that beer, then straightens up to his feet, looking about the room. "And the pipes are frozen solid, so I won't be able to work with them until they've thawed out. So for now, heat is what you've got. Any electrical problems? I know a bit of basic work for that too."

Melissa laughs and leans her head back against the wall. "You kidding? Aside from the structure of this place, there isn't anything that doesn't need work. But this is good for now. With heat, it'll be more comfortable. And it's good enough for one day, Ash."

Ash rolls his shoulders, a few pops sounding from his spine after the odd poses he had to hold to get some of the work done. "Show me to the fuse box…" he mutters at her, picking up the bag and the tool box before he waits for her to show him the way, then stops and looks around the basement before he grunts as he spots the junction, which is better than the fuse box. He walks over to it and sets the stuff all down, peering at it. "I can give you a list of what plugs you'll need to replace on here if you can get some paper and a pen."

"Ahh…fuse box…I think…Oh, you've got it." No, Melissa doesn't know about these things. "And I don't have any paper or a pen, but I've got my phone. It'll work. Just tell me what I need," she says, pulling said phone out and tapping on it for a moment.

Ash begins to ramble off numbers and letters in odd combinations as he looks through the plugs, pulling them out, looking them over before putting some back in, and leaving others out, naming them off as he pulls them out. When he's done there's a solid list of about a dozen plugs that need replacing. "If you can get those I'll put them in for you." he turns around and leans back against the wall, crossing his arms over his chest. "Anything else that needs doing before the pipes thaw?"

"I told you. The furnace was plenty for today," Melissa says, sliding her phone back in her coat pocket. "Seriously. I do appreciate the help, but take a break. Sit back and enjoy the beer."

Ash waggles the empty beer bottle before winking at her. "Already enjoyed it. I'm a gruff asshole, but I like helping people. Makes me feel… worth something I guess…" He shrugs his shoulders, and then turns to move over towards the stairs, stopping to turn around and look over to her. "Pizza?" he asks with a hopeful look on his face.

"Yeah, it's upstairs. On the table. No fridge, but it was colder than a freezer here last night, so it's still good. But like I said, I make no promises that it won't be frozen solid," Melissa says, picking up the lantern and motioning towards the stairs.

Ash makes his way up the stairs at a slower pace than he came down in, breaking into a coughing fit a little ways up them, then losing his balance just a bit, not falling but wobbling before he catches himself and makes it up the stairs. "Vaccine is kicking my ass. I take it you've had it since you noticed the symptoms and spotted it." He moves into the kitchen, opening up the box of pizza before he grunts, then pries two pieces out and moves to a space heater, holding them up near it.

Melissa shrugs. "You said you weren't getting the flu, but the opposite. The opposite of getting something is not getting it, and that means vaccine," she explains, perching on the edge of the table. "And I've seen plenty of people who had the flu, so I know the symptoms of it very well."

Ash nods his head, very slowly. "We wanted to get more of it so we could destribute it wide spread, but they don't carry very much on an individual truck we found out." He seems… rather upset about that, a soft sigh escaping him. He lifts one of the slices to his mouth, taking an experimental bite, and satisfied when he can bite through it he rises away form the space heater. He adjusts the scarf on his wrist a bit to keep it away from the pizza, as it's rather sooty at the moment from the work he was doing.

"Hijacked a truck, huh? Had some friends who thought that should be done," Melissa says, nodding and tapping lightly on the table. "How much is not much though?"

Ash nods his head slowly. "yeah we did. And if you can, let them know how little is in the trucks…" he shake shis head slowly. "We got one carry size cooler out of it. Not sure how many were int here, but couldn't have been more than two dozen at the absolute most. It's honestly not worth the risk unless you plan to raid a bunch of them. Ran into some FRONTLINE soldiers too. They're guarding the trucks, so it's… dangerous."

Melissa looks like she's struggling with something for a minute before she nods. "All the people who went with you okay? No one died, I hope."

Ash looks over and ponders that question for a moment. "One of them got blown up, but she regenerates so she's okay? Was quite a mess for a minute there. But, no, no one was hurt on a permanent level. No one even died. We managed to get out of there without killing anyone, and them not killing us." He chews on a mouthful of pizza slowly, swallowing it down before he sighs. "I'd like to find out where it's being produced and raid the facility for as much of it as we can get. That would be worth the risk, but taking on Frontline for a measly few vaccines … it's worth it… but it rankles."

Melissa nods. "Can get that. But unfortunately, I can't help you out. I recently lost pretty much all my contacts who could've helped me get that information. Good luck though. And I mean that."

Ash shrugs his shoulders a little bit. "We have a way to find out the information we need. Wasn't asking you for that. But… if you value your friends that are thinking about going after one of the trucks… warn them about what they can expect okay?" He looks worried about her friends, even though he doesn't know them. He moves over to the counter and leans back up against it, munching slowly on his pizza.

Melissa smiles faintly. "That's the question though, isn't it? If I value them. They didn't value me, after all. But that's a long and entirely too boring story that I'm not gonna get into." She tilts her head towards the pizza in his hand. "How is it? Rock hard?"

Ash shrugs a little bit, chewing on his cold pizza. "not too bad when you warm it up a bit with the space heater, but… pretty chewy…" he grins quickly before filling his mouth with pizza again. "They may not, but the question is, are you a better person than them…" He lets it trail off as he continues to munch, until both the slices of pizza are gone.

Melissa loses even her faint smile. "Who ever said I was a good person at all? Or better than anyone else?" she murmurs, sliding off the table and stretching a little. "Thanks for the help, Ash. Gonna run out, pick a few things up. Get the dog'n kid. I'll give you a call when the pipes thaw out, okay?"

Ash sighs a bit as it seems his pleasant time here is over since he's being pretty much kicked out. He shakes his head a little bit, then picks up his thick wool coat and pulls it on over his sooty t-shirt. "Your welcome." he murmurs.

"You're welcome to drop by…if you want," Melissa offers with a little shrug.

Ash tips his head to her as he turns and makes for the front door.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License