It's All Good


monica_icon.gif richard_icon.gif

Scene Title It's All Good
Synopsis Ray gets a visitor. She did not sign in at the front desk.
Date March 14, 2018

Raytech NYCSZ Branch Office: Rooftop Garden

The roof-top of the Raytech branch office is a garden of greenery and flowers, carefully bedded between solar panels on automatically-tilting posts that ensure maximum exposure to the sun. The sun's starting to die down, the sky shades of red and yellow in a glorious display due to all the pollution that New York City's death has still left lingering in the air above it.

On top of said roof this evening is not a gardener, but instead the CEO himself. Richard's knelt beside a bed with gloves on and a plastic bag beside him, digging out weeds carefully to toss into the bag, kept warm by a fleece-lined flight jacket with the faded Chicago Air logo across the back.

Monica told Peyton she would make sure to go see Richard, but their mutual friend might have thought twice about it if she knew how Monica would eventually get around to it. Perhaps the challenge of slipping around the Raytech building without getting caught was the only way she could get herself to bridge this particular gap.

So that's how Ray ends up with a ninja for company this evening.

"So this is what CEOs get up to in their spare time," she comments from behind him, ruining her otherwise silent approach. She pushes her sunglasses up on top of her head, since she can pretty much see without squinting now.

Ray tenses up for a moment when he hears her approach, turning his head to look back over his shoulder… and then a smile tugs up at the corner of his lips, and he straightens up, pushing off the ground to his full height and turning her way. "Well, well, well… look what the cat dragged in," he comments, looking her over head to toe, "Been a long time."

After a second, he adds wryly, "Peyton guilted you into it, didn't she?"

The first thing to notice is that Monica has two arms again. One is covered with a black athletic sleeve and a glove, but its nature becomes apparent when she moves it to wave. It whirrs gently from under the wrappings. "Hi," she says, a bit awkwardly. "Been a hell of a long time," she echoes back to him.

She laughs at the accusation, then looks over at him, caught red-handed. "Yeah, she did. You can tell she's a mom now. Only moms are that cutthroat with guilt."

Her expression drops after a moment. "I thought about how to come see you, probably a hundred times. It just— I never could figure out what to say."

Ray's hazel eyes - visible since he doesn't wear sunglasses everywhere anymore - drop to the arm briefly, but he only gives momentary attention to it before looking back to her. "It's alright," he admits quietly, "I was a memory for a lot of people from a very bad time, and they had wars to fight, families to raise…"

One shoulder comes up in a shrug, "I don't blame you, honestly. Richard Cardinal was dead, after all."

Monica's hands move to her hips as he speaks, her gaze looking down at her feet. "Monica Dawson was dead for a bit, too," she murmurs, as if she doesn't actually mean for him to hear. But he can, obviously. She looks back up at him, to speak clearer. "It wasn't anything you did, Richard. It wasn't even anything he did. It was my issue and I didn't… know how to handle it. Maybe still don't. I don't know. My point is that I shoved you away and I shouldn't have. And I'm sorry."

Richard shakes his head ever so slightly. "It's okay. Seriously, it is…" A faint smile, "You weren't the only one. After all that… well, everyone went their separate ways, I guess. You're alive. You're doing fairly well, from what little Peyton could tell me." Garden-gloved hands spread a touch, "That's what matters. It's good to see you."

"It's good to see you, too," Monica says after a moment's pause. Her hand moves like she might reach out to him, but it slides into her pocket instead. "You look good. You're doing… you know, this is all really good. And your family's all working together, that must be good." Everything is good, Richard. All the things. Monica seems to realize her own repetition, because her eyes close and she shakes her head at herself before looking up at the sky as if it might be able to explain why.

Ray's lips tug up a bit at the corner of his mouth. "It felt like the thing to do," he admits, "And we're doing good, I like to think, in our own way." Brows lift a little, then, "So what is it that you're doing these days? Peyton told me you'd been doing a lot of— travelling?"

"I remember you wanted to help your brother," Monica says, her smile softening there for a moment. Just a moment, though, because he mentions her work. "So much traveling. I mean, I see most of the sights through conference room windows, but they're still nice." But she realizes she didn't actually answer the question, and that realization comes with a chuckle. "I'm working for the Yamagato Fellowship. I travel around, squeeze money out of people, toss it toward a good cause." She mimes that part, tossing the invisible money off to the side as if that is actually how it works. "I've been trying to help New York, mostly. It's weird to be here. It's… weird to see it like this."

"Kimiko's company," Richard affirms with an easy nod, "We sell patents to them, mostly out of Warren's prototypes… hopefully you all aren't evil over there, because we've all seen the shit that my brother can come up with." It's a joke. Mostly. A smile tugs up at the corner of his lips, "Sorry I didn't get to you before their headhunters did. I envy them their… money-squeezer."

"Yes, you do," Monica says with a crooked grin. She's familiar with the connections between the two companies. There might be a few obvious reasons as to why. "Well, I don't trust anybody who makes more money than me," she says, dryly, since he's sure to, "but I'm ninety-nine percent sure we're not evil." There's a brief dip in her expression when he goes on, but she brings it back to a smile fairly quickly. "I'm going to have them put that on my business cards."

Ray brings his shoulder up in an easy shrug, "Xiulan always spoke well of her — I guess they travelled through time, them and Hiro, for a bit — so I figured that her and her company could be trusted well enough." He scratches at his chin, quirking a smile, "I mean, honestly, I should put that on my business cards. The Ray name has a bit of a checkered past, after all."

"I haven't met her. But no one in my office ever says anything bad about her," Monica says. With a smirk. Because of course they don't. "Checkered past, but not a checkered present, yeah? Raytech has less need for a ninja than Redbird did. I mean, that I know of. But if that ever changes," she says playfully, "They tell me I'm based here for now. My hoodie hasn't had a night out in forever."

"Nah," Richard laughs, shaking his head, "I think the shadiest thing I've been planning is a run into the Exclusion Zone to retrieve someone's music collection." He bats a wink, "Don't tell the government, I told them I'm recovering old Redbird assets."

"They won't hear about it from me," Monica says, lifting her hand for a girl scout salute and everything. "Music collections are sacred, after all. Mine's all digital these days. It isn't the same." So, a worthy expedition. Monica seems to run out of things to say, though, and looks down at her feet. The silence lingers just long enough to get awkward, and then for her to notice that it's awkward, and then to try to think of a way to make it not awkward.

"The true treasures of the world are still found on vinyl," is Richard's opinion - always the luddite at heart, ironically enough given the company he's built up around himself. The silence lingers, then, and then he clears his throat, "So, uh— well, if you're in New York, you'll have to come by more often. Meet the kids finally. I'm sure Kaylee'd love to see you.."

"Your kids," Monica says, sounding for a moment like this is a strange thing to contemplate, "right. Oh my god, they're six now." That is real shock, too. Kids. They grow. Time fuctions this way. "Y-yeah, I mean, of course I'd love to meet your kids. And… see your sister." She pauses there, letting out a long exhale before she looks back over at him with a sheepish smile. "Whose music are you rescuing? And have you tried a cassette player yet or are you still adjusting to the eight-track?"

Richard holds up one hand, "Whoa, whoa… whoa. Cassette players? Let's not get carried away here, one step at a time, Dawson…" He smirks, then, "A friend's. And— I mean, you don't have to." His hand drops, "I mean, if you're not comfortable with it. Just offering."

Monica laughs, her head shaking. It sounds a bit like she hasn't had a decent laugh in a while, shaking off the rust. But it's fairly shortlived. "No, I do want to. I mean, if you want me to. I honestly wasn't sure if you'd… want to see me," which might be why she didn't sign in like a normal person, "and here you're inviting me to meet the family and— "

"Monica." Richard cuts her off, a single brow lifting, head cocking a little to one side as he looks at her evenly, "You followed me into absolute insanity without question, on how many occasions? You knew everything we were going against, and you still stood with me, even when I was just going off the orders of a dead man who left some strings hanging around. You lost your arm following me into battle." He pauses, then asks softly, "A few years away doesn't mean you aren't one of the people I'd move heaven and earth for if they needed anything. As far as I'm concerned, you'll always be one of my people."

Her first instinct is to shake her head, which she does. Her second is to pace a little. Which she also does. Monica looks over his way, eyes wet, expression guilty. "I would have been bored without insanity," she comments. It's a joke, but her tone doesn't quite get there. Laughing off emotions doesn't always work as well as she'd like. Her eyes close instead and she stops prowling the roof. There's a beat, but she comes over to give him a hug. A careful one, because she is still aware one of her arms isn't as pliable as the other, and a short one, in the interest of wiping at her eyes after a moment. It's the plants, obviously. Allergies. "Thanks, Rich," she says eventually, even though she has to clear her throat halfway through.

She steps over, and Richard reaches out carefully to return the embrace—hands pressing against her back, and then she draws back and he does as well, offering her a faint but genuine smile. "Hey. After all the trust you put in me, Dawson," he says simply, "I can't just turn on you now. So, yeah, you don't have to worry I don't want you around, and if you say that again, I will smack you in the back of the head." Teasing, now, "Count on it."

"You never led us anywhere we didn't need to be," Monica says, "It made trust easy." She gives him a sidelong glance at the threat, but it comes with a crooked smile. "Somehow I got through all that time with Redbird without getting one of those. I'd like to keep the streak alive." After one last brust at her cheeks, she gives him a warmer smile. "Come on. Let me take you to dinner. You can tell me about the kids."

"Alright, but you're going to get a weird look from the security desk," is Richard's wry observation, hands spreading a bit, "No pass, but you're up here. Maybe you should meet me in the parking lot."

A roguish grin, that same one from the old days, "We can catch up over dinner."

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