In Passing


eileen_icon.gif fedor_icon.gif

Scene Title In Passing
Synopsis Fedor and Eileen have a brief but pleasant encounter at Fresh Kills.
Date February 20, 2009

Fresh Kills Harbor

Situated at one end of the Arthur Kill, this small harbor has clearly seen days of better and more frequent use. Though it's little more than a network formed by a few creaky docks and causeways, it's still more than suitable to tie up for those who have business on the Island. Invariably, at least one of the ports is taken up by a houseboat covered in seagull shit. A thick, greenish layer of bilge scum floats on top of the water and clings to the hull of every passing vessel. Welcome to Staten Island. If you have baggage or cargo to unload, there are usually a few layabouts at the Angry Pelican, which is just a short walk away. Just be sure to ask for a clean glass and keep one hand on your wallet at all times.

The Bell 412 is a funny bird itself, you know most people commonly mistake it for its father the "Huey" UH-1. The shape looks really almost spot on, but of course this variation is four bladed instead of two which means while folks see "huey" they sure dont hear it. Anyway. You hear it first, sort've coming in and going out with the feathered breeze. Then around the northern end of meadow Island it pops into view, flying low and fast as it banks hard around meadow island.

Water mist rushes up as does the wind when he finally nears the docks, lifting the nose sharply as he rolls on the collective. Swiftly the big 412 looses speed and arrives at a stately hover. Then with a single smooth sweep of the chopper he lines it up with the section of dock he's after. Then smoothly he sets down, skids bending visibly ever so slightly under the chopper's weight as it comes to rest. The collective centers swiftly as the engines begin to call quiet, until truly they are quiet. The rotors still spinning now but only slowly. After a minute or two things have gone quiet, and the chopper has grown motionless save for its pilot.

Fedor's dressed like a proper helicopter pilot should be of course. Flight suit, boots, helmet, gloves and of course a bright red scarf that stands out against his otherwise charcoal appointed apparel. He pops open the pilot's door and climbs down with an irritated roll of his shoulders, taking a moment to pull off his helmet and set it back inside on his seat before producing a worn out ballcap from his jacket and immediately checking his watch. Fucker was late, which was ok. He wasnt here to realize Fedor was late too.

There isn't a lot of activity at Fresh Kills Harbor this evening. The sky is only beginning to grow dark, and as the sun sinks closer to the horizon it paints the clouds varying shades of red, yellow and gold and gives the impression of flames leaping up from the glassy water below.

Eileen sits on the edge of the dock Fedor's chosen to park his chopper, legs dangling over the side, tangles of dark hair even more mussed than they were a few minutes ago — though the bemused expression on her face suggests she doesn't hold a grudge against the pilot. Either she doesn't put a lot of effort into her appearance these days, or she's so used to the wind blowing it around that she hasn't even noticed. "You fly that all by yourself?"

Fedor pushes open the big sliding cargo doors with a jerk and a rough kick, before the poor thing sort've slides the rest of the way back before locking in place with an audible clack. Words however, catch Fedor by surprise. He turns, peering at Eileen for a curious moment before parking himself on the cargodeck. "Today I do, but sometime my dog flies with me. He's hanging out with another pilot, they're doing some medical transports for some very sick kids. He keeps kids calm, so its best I fly alone today. You live round'ere?"

"Inland," Eileen says, her tone guarded and noncommittal for reasons that are probably obvious. Nearby, a large black bird — raven or crow, it's difficult to tell without getting a look at its profile - sits perched on a beached buoy, one wing raised as it combs through its feathers with its beak and preens itself. "Local clinic. Sick kids are kind of my thing." At least she isn't without sympathy. "Why? You need a place to stay?"

Fedor just smiles, hell he was young and handsome but shit he didnt think he was -that- handsome. "Naw, just tryna be polite. So sick kids huh?"He lifts a gloved hand to unzip his jacket and fiddle about, before producing a trimmed cohiba and a lighter. Theres a moment or two for him to light his cigar, before he focuses his attention on the black bird. "I hear the island is some sort of reserve for birds or so wildlife in general, seen any herons around here?"Chatty wasnt he.

Young or handsome, Eileen doesn't appear terribly interested in Fedor beyond her initial curiosity, which implies very little about what she might be thinking as she eyes him from her seat on the wooden planks. The bird swivels its head in Fedor's direction and parts its beak a fraction of an inch, though no sound immediately comes out. It's a raven, to be sure.

"Inland," Eileen reiterates. "If you want to see birds, the Greenbelt's the best place to be, but you'd have better luck if you came back sometime in the spring or early summer. There's not a lot this time of year."

Fedor has spent enough time in Alaska to know a Raven when he sees it, and its a strangely comforting sight. Something from home, only this fellow was far less bold. He didnt have a gaggle of rich fucks with fishing gear, giving him treats or equally stupid bush pilots to do just the same. So not being mugged for food, was sort've nice. "Yeah, I'll be very curious to see what pops up. We used to have purple herons back home all over the place, thick as thieves."

A series of delicate furrows appear on Eileen's brow as she gives Fedor a perplexed look as if to ask, Purple? "Really?" There's a momentary pause as she too glances over at the raven, gray-green eyes lingering on its glossy shape a few seconds longer than one might in idle fascination. In response, it lets out a low croak, then closes its beak again and resumes picking its way along its wing. "Whereabouts are you from?"

Fedor just grins. "Inland," he returns, yeah he wasnt in a hurry to go there either. "they're not really purple, just sort've a tint. Little smaller than the big gray ones, they used to have nests in the oxbow behind where I grew up. I havent seen one since I left, but I dont know. "he pauses for a moment, running a thumb across his chin. "I think all pilots have a connection with birds."

"Even the ones who hate flying?" It's voiced like a rhetorical question, and supported by the fact that Eileen's beginning to stand up, first by pulling her legs over the edge of the dock, then by rising into a feline-like crouch. As she climbs to her feet, the raven on the buoy finishes the remainder of its grooming and launches itself off its perch, climbing into the air with a few slow thrusts of its monstrous black wings. Like all its kind, it appears even larger in flight than it does at rest. "I need to be on my way," she says, "but it was nice meeting you. Local wildlife's not exactly a topic of conversation that comes up a lot around here anymore."

Fedor almost frowns, almost. "It was a pleasure then young lady, I wish you a pleasant evening and the safest of travels."He stays where he is, he offers at least some measure of a little wave or something but she hasnt quite socialized with him sufficiently to earn a full fledged wave or anything.

Eileen doesn't wave either, but she does offer Fedor a small, rueful sort of smile in passing. "And you," she says, words as soft as they are sincerely-spoken.

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