I Will


abby_icon.gif caliban_icon.gif

Scene Title I Will
Synopsis Caliban follows through on a promise to Logan and makes one to Abby.
Date April 1, 2010

Old Lucy's: Upstairs

Business has picked up but with the impending storm, it's likely to go back to dead. Which has Abigail working the bar to save hours and money so that when, and if, spring ever comes, the bar won't be going through lean times like other businesses. Brenda rally's to her side of the bar, Heather working the floor and Abby to her side and the TV turned to some game on TV since it's not a live band night and it's not gotten busy enough to warrant cranking the music loud.

What brings Abby away from the bar though is the englishman who entered and asked to talk with her. One that the workers know and don't blink at twice when the two of them go into the back and then head upstairs. Odessa's not here, so it's fine and good and once the door is closed behind the pair there's no rushing to his side and heady kiss as the girls downstairs might imagine there is. It's Abigail, wetting her lower lip and standing in the middle of a silent living room that's devoid of animal life and looking messier than it would be if she were living here. She knew this was coming and just looks over at Caliban with the same look that one gives the principle when they're in trouble and remains silent, digging hands into her jean pockets.

Caliban promised Logan that he'd swing by Lucy's on Friday. Today is Thursday, almost a week later than what he'd intended, but as the Americans say: shit happens. It isn't easy being a publicist, never mind a publicist who works for one of the most vilified men in New York City.

Normally, when a man doesn't take off his coat it's a sure sign that he doesn't plan on staying very long. In the Briton's case, it probably has more to do with the redness around his eyes, the dark circles beneath them and an unusually pallid complexion that makes the blond stubble on his face appear more gray than gold. Abigail doesn't have to work in an ambulance to recognize a sick man when he sees one. Handkerchief held over his mouth, presumably to keep from spreading germs, he trails his other across the back of the loveseat as he circles around behind it and comes to take a seat on its arm.

For someone who has had more than a week to puzzle out how he intends this conversation to go, he's very quiet.

She has some face masks, and the way he holds the hanky is enough for her to take off from the livingroom and go seek out a closet with supplies and bring out the few she hasn't taken with her to the new place. That he looks sick, worries her a bit. Is he evolved and she doesn't know it? Just normal flu or whatever. They're laid out near him before she retreats again to where she was and so she can sink down and sit on the floor with her back to the wall and knee's bent. Her elbows rest on her knee's and hands dangle out. She looks not near as bad as him, but stress is pulling it's weight on her as well.

"I'm going back on my anti-depressants. Doesn't excuse the fight I picked with Logan but…" Might give him insight. "I assume that's why you're here"

Irritation twitches at the corner of Caliban's mouth behind the cloth. If he'd had any notions of taking a derisive tone to reprimand her, they evaporate with the first words Abigail offers up to the space between them. "Any quarrel I have is largely with Laudani," he says, lowering his handkerchief, "but I think it's probably best for everyone involved if you made an effort to stay away from Burlesque. Regardless of whether or not he's deserving, never assault a man on his own turf. Especially not when it's equipped with more cameras than you have fingers and toes."

What does Teo have to do with Logan? "or tongues" Comes quietly from Abigail as she nods to what she's going to take as an order. "I wasn't thinking Robert. I'm sorry. A friend just died and…" One of many thanks to these people and she pinned it on Logan. "It won't happen again Robert. I wasn't-"

"Why are you upset with Teodoro?" She'll bite and ask. He is her sometimes though not of late, roommate. "He doesn't like you, he doesn't like what you do or what we.. do" Whatever it is that they do.

She doesn't know. The thought had not occurred to Caliban until now, and he turns his head to regard her with blue eyes more watery than usual, saying nothing while he scrutinizes the expression she wears on her tired face and searches for truth in its familiar features, soft and haggard both at once. "I'm aware of what happened to Hokuto Ichihara," he says, "and while I don't condone his actions, I can't blame Logan for looking after his own interests. Almost any man would have done the same in his position, whether to turn a profit or to save his own skin."

As for Teodoro: "You can tell Laudani that the next time he brutalizes one of Mr. Linderman's employees, there will be sanctioned consequences. He won't have to face retaliation this time because he's your friend, but my position is such that I can only defend him once."

"I don't want to play messenger Robert" She thumps her head against the wall a few times. "I don't want to be made to choose Robert." Lips purse together and she musters up courage from somewhere in her to look over at him. God, he's sick. He should be in bed, with some Lackey taking care of his stuff and not coming here to chastise her and ask her to play messenger.

"I'll… tell him" She concedes, interlacing fingers. "I'm sorry and I apologize for what he did. It was Logan wasn't it? What is it with people I know going after him after I tell them not to" She reshifts, rubbing at her face as if it might wipe away the circles under her eyes. 'Fine. I'll do it because you look like death warmed over and I'm afraid to have you both in the same room at all"

"He's more likely to listen if he hears it from someone he approves of rather than someone he doesn't." Caliban folds his handkerchief in two and tucks it into his jacket pocket. If he's wearing a suit beneath his coat or just dark slacks and a pair of leather loafers, Abigail cannot tell; the black scarf draped loosely around his neck and tucked down the front of the garment obscures his collar and forces her to resort to guessing. "I've advised Logan to stop doing business with Dreyfus' people. If you lose any more friends, it won't be because of him."

Here's another thing she didn't know Caliban. That Logan gave the names to Dreyfus's people. "I thought logan only knew who was getting targeted" Quiet confession, Abigail's not in the loop with all things that the others are doing. In her own world it seems. "I'll try and get a hold of him. That's the best that I can promise Robert. I don't even know where he's staying right now. They're all dealing with trying to… deal with the Russians and I'm just.. trying to not get more friends killed or killed myself" If she looses more friends. She's not that sure that she has more to loose.

"Have you ever killed any of my friends?" Strange question to ask.

Difficult question to answer. Caliban lowers his eyes to his hands, the skin on the tips of his fingers pink and chapped by the weather, some it flaking off around the knuckles and on his palms. He isn't wearing gloves. Probably should be. "I've killed people," he says, "directly and not. To my knowledge, none of them were acquainted with you, but I've been wrong about these things before. It's possible."

She knew he'd killed people. She wasn't disillusioning herself about it. He was a linderman rep and had just flat out told her that if Teo assaulted another one of the white haired mans underlings that there'd be retaliation. "Okay" Dumb nod of her head. "Okay" God she hates that word and yet, there she is using it. Almost everyone she knows has killed someone. She's killed someone.

"I uhh, I saw the magazine, but since you're sick, what I was going to do is sorta.. moot now. It's not the H5N10 is it?"

Caliban traces his thumb along the curve of his opposite hand and feels his fingers one at a time as if testing their joints to see if they still work without attempting to flex them. H5N10 or not, he is undoubtedly sore and suffering from stiff muscles and an even stiffer neck, but if he's in any pain then he hides it well. It's his exhaustion that's impossible for him to conceal, for it has saturated every last inch of him.

He does not lift his gaze. "Are you asking me if I'm Evolved?"

"No Robert, I'm asking if it's evo-flu so I know whether it's safe to go over there and touch your forehead and cart you out this door and schlep you all the way back to wherever it is that you live so that I can take care of you and tell Mr. Linderman to go fuck himself for the day, that you're sick. If it's not evo-flu then i'm going to let you schlep yourself to wherever it is that you live and start making you chicken soup and let you tell Mr. Linderman that you need today and tomorrow off so you can get better. Because if he's anything like I was, he can't do a single thing to help you"

There's an expectant gaze and raised brows. Is it evo flu? "I don't care if you're evolved or not Robert. You didn't seem to care that I was and then wasn't"

Caliban spreads his hands in what is meant to be a gesture of surrender but comes off as something a little more defensive instead. A moment later, they find the pockets of his coat and he leans back against the loveseat, long legs crossed at the ankle with their heels braced against the floor. Although there's no sweat glistening on his brow, he's either very hot or very cold and without placing her hand on his face Abigail has no way of knowing which.


No, she's not going to ask him what he does. But it's what she wanted to know and after that, she's up, heading over to him so that she can lay the back of her palm on his forehead and feel for any fever. "Robert" A shake of her head. "You need to be in bed, not delivering threats by messenger. This could have waited. I still would have felt bad two weeks from now" One hand is plucked up from it's hidey hole in the pocket so she can take his pulse. "How bad"

Caliban doesn't enjoy being fussed over. He provides just enough resistance to satisfy his pride before Abigail is wresting his hand from his pocket, turning it over and touching her fingers to the inside of his wrist. The palm at his forehead sears hot; he's running a fever. "I've had worse," he grumbles, coarse voice made thicker by the phlegm that coats the back of his throat. "Pneumonia, when I was a boy." Cats purr and he does too, but the noise he makes sounds much less graceful or attractive than any whiskery feline he might sometimes resemble when dressed in pinstripes, and rather than convey pleasure it communicates his growing exasperation with the female in front of him. "My temperature's up and I can't access my ability. That's all."

"It's the Shanti Virus. A strain of it. Somehow it was changed, modified or such. Al's been around all the sick people and he's not coming down with it. I think if I was evolved still, I'd be pretty immune to it too. I don't know" Too hot for her liking and she leave him be when he's looking to be irritated. "You sound congested too. And pneumonia as a child has nothing on this Robert and you know it. You're not hallucinating are you? Some of the others they're.." Hands off, she backs off a few steps, give him his space. "I have today and tomorrow off, I can come stay with you. I can help you bring the fever down. You can't run yourself ragged while you're sick Robert and they don't know how long it takes for this to get out of your system. I can't catch it"

"If I were hallucinating," says Caliban, "I'd have already checked myself into St. Luke's. It's only a fever, Abigail." A fever with a forty percent survival rate, but if the Briton has been reading the articles about the disease in the paper, then he must be very confident about his body's ability to fight it. Pale though he is, he's a long way from death's door.

Bristling visibly, he reaches up to scratch his fingernails along his jaw. "Will you be satisfied if I tell you that you'll be the first to know if I develop further symptoms?"

She doesn't look satisfied but she nods, sinking hands into the back of her pockets, wrinkling her nose. "I doubt I'll be the first but… please?" Awkwardly she stands, unsure of whether to kiss him, or just keep staying back lest it irritate him further. "I'll call Teo and let him know, Just, take ibuprofen. Motrin if you can, it'll work on the fever okay? Cool showers, cool cloths. Someones going to clue in that you're evolved" Is he registered? Probably not, maybe not. She wasn't going to ask and it wasn't her business.

"We have places to put you Robert, if you don't want to end up at the hospital. I'd still say go there but.. if you can't or don't want to…"

"I'll consider it," Caliban agrees, rising from the couch, which is neither a yes nor no in response to places where he can be put. The look he's giving Abigail suggests that he wonders whether or not she's comparing him to flatware, but any offense he might take at her choice of words passes both quickly and smoothly, water rolling fluid off a duck's slick back. "It's important," he says, "that you keep this between the two of us. There are only a handful of people who know what I am, what I can do. Logan is not among them."

"We all have secrets Robert. Sometimes, I actually do keep them" This, Hiro, there's a handful of others that she's never spoken of. She makes a halted move, as if she might go forward, flutter hands over him. But she stops, hauls herself back. 'When you're better" When, not is. "I'm taking you to the 21. You're not paying Robert. Not this. There's.. a secret room, it's a wine cellar, floor to ceiling. you can have dinner with all the musty bottles and the such. If you want to. If you don't, I understand"

"But I do." Caliban adjusts the sleeves of his coat and then the collar, turning it up to give his throat and cheeks some extra protection against the blustering wind before he heads back down the stairs and prepares to brave the street corner again, hail a cab. Fingers rake through the blond hair on the top of his head. "When I'm better." Apparently, it isn't a matter of if for him either.

She doesn't follow off behind him. He can make it down the stairs fine, if not, he'd be toppling and she'd hear it. He wants to. Which means that despite Teo's attempts, unknown or known, things aren't derailing between the two of them. Just sickness and crankiness from being ill. Maybe. Abigail looks away towards the wall and the picture of her family that hands there with a purse of lips before she turns to head downstairs to get her cellphone. Alas, the ladies downstairs will be disappointed.

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