deckard_icon.gif leah_icon.gif

Scene Title Inarticulate
Synopsis The afternoon after their brothel escape, the Deckards agree that Teo is both nice and Italian, but somehow manage to avoid talking about what actually happened.
Date February 24, 2009

A Safehouse in Staten

Early afternoon at mysterious safehouse number x, and Flint Deckard has only just started the process of dragging himself awake. He's been asleep almost since they arrived. Maybe an hour to calm down enough to swallow a few pills, and nighty night for the first time in days.

He's fresh out of the shower now, with clean white gauze taped into place over the blind socket of his left eye. The dress shirt he's wearing was white at one point. After a healthy application of hydrogen peroxide, some lazy scrubbing, and an unwise cycle through the dryer, portions of the right side and tail are white. Everything else is a moldering shade of brownish red, buttons left open over a similarly conditioned undershirt and grey slacks that have been ironed about as well as his shirt was washed. The jacket's sprawled over his bed with a copy of the paper, a bowl, a spoon, and a box of frosted flakes. They're great, or so he's heard.

He's in the bathroom attached to the shabby bedroom he slept in, currently rinsing toothpaste down the sink. The stale stink of vomit lingers pleasantly after the receding swirl of a recent toilet flush.

Ratatat. Ratatatatat.

It's enough to announce her, the arrhythmic rap of her knuckles on the door, so if she had a sense of courtesy she'd wait for an answer, but Leah prejudges Flint's mood with the bare suspicion he still won't be exactly happy, and for whatever reasons of her own chooses to give him a breach of privacy to be cranky about, in addition to everything else. Thus, she drifts in through the closed door without bothering to open it, and casts a cursory glance around the relative quiet of the shabby little bedroom, her hands hitched to her hips and a slowly exhaled breath of air puffing out her cheeks.

Last night's blacks are what she's wearing now, closely fit pants and snug long-sleeved black T-shirt and flat black shoes. All the black without the normal relief of color washes her out a little and leaves her looking a little drained, although that might be as much to do with the lack of laughter in her dark eyes as she surveys the little room.

Deckard is currently barefoot, which knocks him down half an inch or so while he lets loose one last wad of spearmint spit and sees that it's spent down the drain with a lazy swab of his left hand. The right tries to duck the toothbrush down into a slotted holder screwed to the wall, misses, misses again, and makes it in on the third try when he clenches his jaw and turns his head.

Try as he might to draw ignorance out for as long as possible, there's nothing wrong with his ears, and the slate blue of his remaining eye catches briefly on Leah's reflection behind his own when he leans over to towel his hands off. His mouth opens but doesn't say anything, as it has a way of doing lately, and he looks down again to turn over a razor, only to disregard that idea after scrubbing his free hand over accumulated growth. It's not so bad. Maybe.

"Hey." Just, 'hey.' The razor is dropped, and the medicine cabinet behind the mirror opened, but there's nothing all that interesting in there. Some Tums and an ancient bottle of shaving cream. It looks like it's from the 70s.

"Hey." Leah echoes the sound, noncommittal in tone and diffident about the set of her shoulders, slouching just slightly where she stands as she settles her weight on her heels. The controlled restlessness reflects in the shifting of her glance, not settling any one particular place for long; at the longest, she frowns intently at him, specifically at the back of his shoulder, with a faint crease to her brow.

Then she stands there for a moment, running her tongue along teeth and then pursing her lips, listening to the sound of awkwardness, but no longer looking directly in his direction. Those frosted flakes sure are great. They also aren't disconcertingly cyclopic, what with being breakfast cereal.

Awkward. Deckard gives the can of cream a pass, closing the cabinet with the flat of his hand, and effectively mussing the mirror in the process. He doesn't bother to wipe it down, but turns to flick the light off on his way back into the bedroom. And Leah.

Now that he's around, the line of his gaze has all the direct intent of someone putting a lot of effort into pretending that they are confident enough for eye contact. Pallor, gauze, and nasty shirt aside, he doesn't actually look…too terrible. He has Mu-Qian to thank for that. "You okay?"

Leah nods, her stance shifting to accommodate the fold of her arms loosely over her stomach. Then she moves, pacing a few steps across the room, at a diagonal that doesn't really alter the distance between them but makes it more hypotenuse than line. She barely meets his gaze, mouth turning up at one corner in a slightly twisty expression that approximates the dexter half of a smile, and then looks away again, scrubbing her palm at the back of her neck as she paces.

"I'm fine," she says at a slight delay. "You look — better." Since one of the most common things she says to him these days is that he looks like shit, it's possible this is a substitution of some kind — 'less like something that came out of a monkey's butt', something like that. She pins the bridge of her nose between thumb and forefinger, slanting a glance back toward him. "Are you? Okay?"

"Thanks." The lift of Deckard's brows suggests that he thinks he looks good too, almost too convincingly. You know, except for the big nasty hole in his head that's currently hidden by tape and gauze. And the shirt again. But otherwise, seriously. Smokin'.

"Nice outfit." Moodwise he sounds okay, though the croak of his voice is rough with grit and doesn't actually answer the question either way. Not unlike the selective hearing he has a tendency to employ in dealing with uncomfortable questions from Teo. Who asks a lot of them. He lingers near the bathroom meanwhile, mirroring her movement with a single step of his own and some weird combination shrug, head tip, nod, but not quite any of the above. Thing. "How'd you find me?"

Leah notes the non-answer with a faint quirk of her lips, but she's inclined to leave it lie. The black-black-black of her outfit, she displays with the opening of her arms, showing her hands palms out in a little 'hey' display to go with the faux-bright of her facial shrug.

Then, tucking a loose curl behind the curve of her ear with a tweak of her fingers, she lets her mouth twist into a configuration that reflects exasperation instead. "Buddy of yours broke into my place," she says, dry-voiced. Too lightly, she tells him, "You wanna get yourself killed you really gotta find a way to be less charming."

"Buddy," Deckard echoes, brows falling flat again. "I know it's probably hard to believe, but I've managed to make more than one since I've been here." At least two. Maybe three or four, depending on what dictionary you're reading out of and whether or not you factor skill at breaking and entry into the filter. Gonna need more information. There's no real acid to his cynicism, no annoyance or bite. Just automatic back and forth on his way back over to the bed. And the frosted flakes.

"I know. I don't even feed them and they just…keep following me around." A grim tug down at the corners of his mouth is ineffectually shielded by a full turn for the cereal so that he might set into the process of pouring himself a bowl. No milk, apparently. That would be healthy.

"The cute little Italian," Leah provides more information through a veneer of false cheer, although Teo isn't exactly bitty. Leah meanders a few paces closer to the bed, eyeing Flint's breakfast with a moment's dubiousness — as though she eats any better — and then turns in a partial pivot to resume her pacing at an angle instead. "Buona sera." She really doesn't speak Italian, either, and this shows in her butchering of the accent despite her play at imitation.

"I'm glad it was that one," she adds, narrowing a queerly skittish glance in her brother's direction. "I haven't exactly printed an ad for spiffy magic tricks in the fucking Yellow Pages." Well. Not exactly, but secrets do seem to propagate themselves obscenely once first released, little puffs of dandelion on the wind. And that first public exploitation was quite the big bloom.

"Teo." Italian at least. Deckard looks less certain about the 'cute' and 'little,' — as much exchanged in the form of a sideways 'please don't molest him,' glance at his sister. Flakes that are frosted sift off in a steady stream until the box is tipped back and offered out to her. She'll have to use her hands or find a bowl for herself, apparently.

"I can't make any promises about his secret-keeping ability, but the fact that I'm still alive kind of speaks for itself." Or it would, if she knew the full story. Non-plussed by the fact that she doesn't, he acquires the spoon, then turns to drop himself down onto the bedside in a silence that is marginally more cross than those that have come before it.

'Please, he's like a baby,' the twist of Leah's sardonic expression says to Deckard's 'do not grope Teo' face. She does, however, appropriate the cereal box, sticking her hand down into its depths with a loud crackling. With a handful of sugared flakes in her palm, she drops the box lightly back to his bed, and then tips her head back to crunch a bunch of them at once, her left hand hovering beneath her chin just in case this turns out to be as messy and retarded a proposition as it looks like it ought to be at first glance.

After she swallows, she lopes the pace and a half to Flint's other side to sit demurely on the edge of the bed, barely on it. Flicking a last few flakes into her mouth, she says, "He's obviously good enough people to come get me when your dumb ass is otherwise fucked. So, I guess there's more important things than keeping your trap shut." She tips her head, looking at him directly for the greatest span of time — more than a heartbeat, less than a minute! — that she has since first invading his room. What she seeks to find through this moment's study is not clear.

"He's a good guy." It's almost a play on the idea of good guys, only unintentional because Deckard is distracted with looking down at his frosted flakes a little bit as if he'd like to murder them. He's not happy. Frown lines sunk in deeper than usual around the grind of his jaw shade all the darker while he chews what he's already shoveled into his mouth. The movement is almost animatronic in its rigid rhythm. At least until he swallows and glances up again to notice her looking at him.

His brow furrows defensively (What?) – the lines across his forehead vanishing under tape before they make it all the way across.

"I'm just trying to figure out," Leah starts to say quietly, and then stops, pressing two fingertips lightly against one of her temples. "I don't know," she says, falling short of wherever she was taking that, succumbing to the cowardice of a moment. Why break perfectly workable precedent? It is not like her questions would get answers anyway.

She brushes her hands together over the floor, freeing them from scattered crumbs. At least she does it over the floor and not over the bedding. Then she folds her arms over her knees and looks away from Flint again, frowning out into the middle distance. "Ffff," she hisses out a breath through the light press of teeth against her lower lip.

There is kind of a lot to figure out, isn't there? Spoon rifling aimlessly through his dry lake bed of flakes, Deckard doesn't manage to keep up eye contact for very long this time before he turns back down to the bowl. His poking and prodding continues there for a few seconds more before he speaks. "It's complicated. I'm not…" always almost dying. Except lately he kind of is, so. Rather than lie, he just trails off, spoon twirled ineffectually down around in his afternoon breakfast.

After a while he glances back over at her only to see that she's looked away. As she doesn't seem to be in a hurry to make herself disappear, he resettles his weight a little, trying to force himself to relax before he takes another bite. And so it goes, at least until he runs out of cereal, anger and guilt both serving as a source of undefined unease around his person until it's time for them to go their separate ways again.

February 24th: A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood
February 24th: Wanna Talk About It
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