Invited To Meet The Parents


len2_icon.gif tamsine_icon.gif

Scene Title Invited To Meet The Parents
Synopsis So it seems, and on Thanksgiving, no less.
Date November 22, 2009

It's a chilly but clear autumn day just made for walking in the park to take in the golds, browns, oranges and reds of the falling leaves. Tamsine is bundled up in a shearling coat, jeans, and boots, her red hair beneath a cream knit cap. She sits on the park bench with a cup of coffee in her hands, sipping now and then, waiting for her date to arrive. The park is neither busy nor empty; children play on a nearby playground, joggers run by, young men play frisbee with dogs on the grass across the way. It's a perfect Sunday afternoon, if one likes November.

And arrive he does. Len Denton walks down the sidewalk after parking near Tamsine's place and hoofing it down towards the park. He is dressed in a warm brown leather jacket, buttoned up so that you can barely see the collar of the black T-shirt underneath. His jeans tuck down into his cowboy boots, as he and his baseball cap make their way towards the bench. He pauses behind the bench as he watches her for a moment, cup in hand. She looks so peaceful and content. He knows what she's gone through and there have been several times he's asked himself if he has the right to put her through that again. It may come down to being his job or her. Even though they've only been seeing each other for a few months, they have really begun to click, though on the outside they might seem to be worlds apart. He moves around the bench and sits down next to her and watches the sparse amount of children at play for a few moments before he turns to look at her. "I must say that no matter how many times I see you, you always take my breath away. And with that, he leans over to kiss her.

Her own breath catches with the compliment, and as always, her cheeks color a touch with a blush. They're already rosy from the chill of the autumn air, but they grow pinker for the moment as she smiles up at him. "You need to get out more often, but I'm glad that apparently someone kept you in a bubble for a long time," she teases, one hand leaving her coffee cup to take his hand in hers. "How are you doing?" She always asks it with an emphasis on the end of the question, her tone sincere and curious. No simple "fine" could answer the question the way she asks it.

He knows the seriousness of the question, and when she asks it in such a manner, he could never really reply with just 'fine'. How does he answer that question? Teo Laudini has apparently vanished from the face of the Earth. His agents are going around the world and to be honest, he's not quite as comfortable sitting in the 'big' chair as he used to be. "Well, on the plus side, I haven't been shot at this week, nor have I been the victim in an evolved or unevolved related incident. That being said, the killer I've been tracking seems to have vanished." Len tries to make the load light. There's only so much he's willing to share with her, not because of any selfishness to hold onto it on his part, but because there are some burdens he just isn't ready to place on someone else's shoulder just yet. "And how about yourself? How have you been? Anything interesting going on?"

She squeezes his hand. "Maybe if he disappeared it's a good thing. Not that it will make your job easier, since you still have to look for him, right?" She doesn't know so very much. "I'm sorry though. I know it's stressing you out, and I wish I could help." She makes a sad face, feeling helpless as she is to help him. "Nothing interesting here, no. You're the only thing interesting in my life." She smiles at that last bit. It's true, of course. "Work is work, and not too hard. I signed up to take a painting class at the adult ed center, but it doesn't start until the new year."

Len smiles at that. He's off chasing killers, and she's being very supportive about it. He looks down as his fingers interlace with hers and he listens to her talk about her class. "Well, let's make sure I get one of those paintings when you're done. It'll brighten my office a little." His office that is laced with Texas sporting paraphenalia. "Sounds like it'll be a good thing for you. I'm glad you're doing that. I think it'll do you good to try it again."

"I don't think I'll be very good. I was never really an artist of any type. I was better at music," she says quietly, then hops off the bench, pulling his hand to get him to stand, too. "Let's walk," she says brightly. She watches some children playing, a sad smile on her face. "I avoided this place for a long time. I used to come here with Lil. But … I missed it, and I missed the good memories. They're sad, but it's better than just dwelling on the bad."

Len is pulled to his feet and he pulls her back towards him and puts his arms around her as they walk away from the playground. "There's nothing wrong with remembering bad times, as long as you remember the good ones too. I think that you need a healthy dose of both. I think it's good that you remember her. She sounds like she was a sweet kid." Len isn't all that familiar with children, except for his own siblings. He never had children in his first marriage, which in hindsight is probably for the best.

"The best," Tamsine manages, without crying. She's healing, though slowly. She can now mention the girl without crying. It's taken some time. "And I'm not biased at all." She grins, snuggling in against him as they walk the path. "You would be a good dad. Not that I'm hitting you up for it or anything, before you freak out on me, I promise. Just… you have that way about you. Kind and encouraging. And woe to the boys who come to court your daughters."

Len laughs at that. Not that he hasn't thought of it before, but it's been one of those things. Those things where he career always came first. His former wife never pestered him about it. In fact, it was just as well for her as she wasn't really all that concerned with having children. He's occasionally think about it, but like a puff of smoke, when reality came haunting, it disappeared. "Well, I'll keep my shotgun in the truck, just in case." More seriously, "I wish I could have met her." There's so much he wants to tell her. About what he does. About what he's done. Obviously nothing bad, though he has had his moment for the sake of his work, but he doesn't want to scare her off. There's a coffee shop they are passing as Len turns. "Need something warm to drink? We can stop."

"Ahh, poor big strong man cold and wants a warm respite from the weather?" Tamsine teases, eyes sparkling up at him as she shows him her still half-full cup. "But we can go in, if you want something. Otherwise, I have some pie at home we can have later." She glances down at the sidewalk for a moment. Speaking of pie… "Speaking of pie… what are you doing for Thanksgiving?" She hasn't talked to him about the holiday yet.

"I was only thinking of you, dear." He takes a moment to consider if he wants a cup of coffee or not, but the mention of pie perks him up and he tugs her along. Len tries to remember the last holiday he spent with someone. Of course, that recollection fails to result in any results. "I was hoping to spend it with you. Though Old Man Wu was hoping I'd be coming by his place for some Sweet and Sour Turkey." Len gives her hand a squeeze as they continues to walk onward.

"Sweet and sour turkey…" she repeats with a laugh and a shake of her head. "Though Chinese Thanksgiving might be a nice change of pace. Anyway… my parents have invited you. To their place." She blushes a little, feeling like a kid again. "I mean, I'll be there too of course. I'll be cooking most of it — my mom is a good grocer but not that good of a cook."

It wouldn't be proper to turn down a Thanksgiving dinner invitation from Tamsine's parents. Might even be considered rude. He grins at her and nods. "Well, I'd like that very much. The fact that you'll be cooking makes the decision that much easier. In fact, I can't think of any reason that would be acceptable to miss a home cooked meal from you, Tam." Len gives her hand a squeeze. "Shall we ride over together? I can pick you up in the Jeep."

"It's not a long ride from my place, but since you need to drive in, that'll work," she says, smiling up at him at his sweet words. "They'll like you, I'm sure of it. The fact you're the first person I'm bringing to meet them in … oh, forever? you don't have a lot of competition."

"Well, I would hope not," Len grins as he waits for the light to change so they can cross the street. The moment she mentioned pie, he was already looking for a place to turn around. "I promise to put on my best duds to try and impress them. I'll even wear my best cowboy hat." He winks. "So, what kind of pie is waiting for me when we get back?"

"Sour cream and apple," she says. "And I don't know if their ceiling is high enough to accommodate you AND a cowboy hat, but you're certainly free to try." She grins as they head back to her little brownstone.

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