Last Minute Notice


alicia_icon.gif ziadie_icon.gif

Scene Title Last Minute Notice
Synopsis Two strangers, and perspectives on inattention.
Date February 4, 2011

Northern Brooklyn

It's quite literally freezing out, and with the sun setting, it's only going to get colder. The harsh orange, green, and red illumination coloring Brooklyn's streets offers no ambient impressions of warmth, even when reflected diffusely back from the overcast sky.

Honestly, winter needs to be over and done with already — New York's had more than its share this past year.

Bundled up in a beige coat, deeply indigo scarf, and dark blue gloves, Alicia trudges in the direction of home for the last day this week. Her thoughts are not at all on the sidewalk she travels or the general flow of traffic, the numerous and varied Brooklyn residents doing much the same thing. A couple of pigeons more reluctant to call it a day putter about on the sidewalk right up until she almost steps on them, abruptly bursting into noisy flight from almost underfoot.

At one point in her path, Ziadie stands, staring at the road absently, not quite sure that he wants to call a taxi to get out of the cold yet. It's been a long day, overall, and he's walked far enough from the police station that he can satisfy his own paranoia that no one is following him. And it is in that same absent-mindedness, focused more on his thoughts than on where he is going, that he turns to walk down the street, very nearly but not quite bumping into Alicia. The former cop seems startled, more than anything else, with hastily muttered apologies. "Are you alright?"

Distracted by the birds, Alicia doesn't see Ziadie until it's already too late. Her hands reach partway out in reflex, to stabilize or ward off or… well, there was no actual collision anyway. Slightly self-conscious as they fall to her sides, she offers him an apologetic smile. "Yeah, sorry. I'm fine. Just — off woolgathering. Y'know, airheaded blonde moment." A flicker of grin renders that statement decidedly tongue-in-cheek, before she takes an actual look at Ziadie. "No harm done, right?"

"Of course not," Ziadie says. The former cop leans on his cane, looking down a bit to look at Alicia, the quick back and forth glance that means he'll probably recognise her in the future, should he ever run into her (literally or not) again. "I was rather sidetracked, myself. So much to think about, you know?"

The older man chuckles a bit, brushing a fleck of snow off of his peacoat, with a bit of an expression that wonders how it even got there in the first place. "After all, I nearly walked into you, not the other way around." A pause. "I suppose I've grown to like not having to be alert one hundred percent of the time. Modest benefit of retirement. Or mayhaps simply of time passing on." He's not specifically talking to Alicia. Ziadie's talking because right now, someone is listening, and there's a hint of nostalgia for whatever vaguely mentioned past.

Alicia tips her head, regarding Ziadie with a curiously raised eyebrow. "Knew a kid or two in college," she remarks, as she tucks gloved hands into the pockets of her coat, "you'd swear, they never had a clue what was around them." The hands promptly come back out, held palms-up before her shoulders. "Nose down in books, oh, probably 24-7. See them going between buildings, turning pages as they went." Hands fall. "Didn't once hear of them walking into a single thing.

"Never could figure how it worked," she concludes, tossing one shoulder in a shrug. "Me, I get absorbed. Forget what I'm doing now and think about what I intend to do later. So it's good you did notice, even last-minute."

"Thirty-five years habit of noticing everything, even when I'm distracted," Ziadie says, with a shrug. "Even if I have the luxury of not paying attention, now, I still do, sooner or later." He offers Alicia a bit of a smile. "Line of work I did, you notice." He omits what he did, overall, with a bit of a half-snort. "At least it saved you from being bowled into the snow. And saved me from falling on my rear."

Alicia waves a hand slightly to one side, palm up: your point. "I'd survive the snow, I assure you," she replies, grinning broadly at Ziadie. "But I wouldn't wish it on you, or anyone." Tipping her head back, she looks up towards the overcast sky, faintly shaded by diffuse city light. "I'd rather have it go away," the young woman informs the clouds, before dropping her gaze again and offering her companion a ruefully crooked smile. "But it's not like the weather's going to listen to me. As long as we have spring eventually, I guess it's fine."

The older man nods. "Weather listens to no one," he says, laughing a bit. "Except maybe those few whose ability affects it, and that's another kettle of fish entirely." He shrugs, a gesture that doesn't encompass his left shoulder or his left arm (which is held carefully against his body), but is obvious nonetheless. "I'm not as young as I used to be," he admits. "Time was I'd fall in the snow no worries. These days I worry something might break, and then well … then I'd have a few people more worried than they already are now. Couldn't have that, could we."

"Yeah, that doesn't include me," Alicia responds. She shrugs as well, glancing on down the stretch of street before her, then nods towards Ziadie. "I should probably get on home," the blonde points out, slightly apologetic in tone. "Let the weekend officially begin." She lifts a hand, presses thumb and forefinger tightly together. "Turn the noticing up a little more, and I think you'll be safe from the worriers. I'll be sure to do the same," Alicia promises.

"Of course," Ziadie says, ducking and stepping aside to finally hail a taxi. Preferably, one that will take him all the way, but he'll deal with that when he actually succeeds. "You have a nice weekend, yes?" He offers her a smile, one that says that he's grateful both that she listened to his not necessarily topical ramblings, and that he's grateful she didn't stretch it out too long. "Try … try to watch where you're going, th' rest of the way." He turns back towards her, giving a little nod of recognition, and a smile.

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