Long Life Noodle Stand


kaylee_icon.gif luther_icon.gif

Scene Title Long Life Noodle Stand
Synopsis Enjoying a meal of Noodles at the festival, Kaylee and Luther find things a little too spicy when they get another look at their other selves.
Date October 23, 2018

Matsuri Grounds

Yamagato Park

Tucked between a number of stands representative of various izakaya and culinary venues, a humble noodle stand bears a couple of solar-powered red paper lanterns at the corners and a single sign in English and Japanese showing the name to be “Long Life Noodles”. These types of stands, tachigui, usually bear only a couple of standing tables for matsuri-goers to grab their food, eat while standing, and then move on to other activities. It keeps the customers, and the cash, going. As an exception to the rule, the Long Life Noodle stand has set up a couple of small, circular tables and stackable stools around them to allow those who’d like to be seated while partaking to do so.

One attendee of the festivities does just that as Luther Bellamy, dressed in a simple long-sleeved shirt, sweater and jeans, tall form with long legs currently bent to either side of the proportionately small table, hunches over a steaming bowl of soup noodles. The fact that he’s got two empty bowls stacked beside his hand already indicates he’s been here awhile. Or that he eats fast, and eats a lot.

A couple of ladies in festival appropriate attire strolling by, already a little tipsy by the flush of their cheeks and swaying movement and leaning on each other, have a pause at the noodle stand too. Not-so-hushed commentary in Japanese floats through before they take one look at Luther and slip into soft tittering giggles to each other. But the ladies scoot on, clip-clopping away in their geta sandals to the next stand.

Originally, she had been here with her family, all of them dressed up — as encourage too — in various garb. The pair followed after the kids, watching them as they try out various activities. However, Kaylee Sumter felt a little out of place, her vibrant and rich blue yukata with it’s pale pink and yellow florals getting looks from those who pass her. It was always weird to have so many eyes on her. Finally, she excuses herself from her family, intent on looking for something to soothe the gnawing in her stomach and find a place away from the buzzing hive of minds swirling all around her.

Oh! The small modest cart catches her eye and then shortly after it the tall form of Luther, looking rather out of place on the stool himself. The sight teases out a crooked smile of amusement. Looking at the menu, Kaylee decides this was as good of a place as any. Quickly, gathering a pair of bowls for herself, she steps around into his view. “Mind some company?” she asks arching a brow and favoring the man with a bright smile. “I come bearing the gift of noodles.” If it is one thing she understands by now, it is that he is an eater just like her.

Luther’s noticed the giggling, sending a subtle sidelong glance towards the pair of women that truly sends them off. Then he’s turned back to the bowl of ramen noodles that steadily disappear into him. So focused on the food is he that he doesn’t take notice of the telepath until the vibrant blues and colorful florals draws his peripheral attention. Luther looks up at her, then down to the yukata, and then back up. He returns the smile, nodding to one of the stools beside his bent leg.

“How could I refuse? Have a seat,” he bids, pushing the extra empty bowls out of the way to the other side of the tiny table. It’s the only other option outside of standing, anyway. Also taking notice of a distinct lack of family around her, he has to ask. “The kids enjoying the festival?” He assumes as much. “How about you? You… you look nice tonight.” A beat passes and he wonders aloud, “Is Joseph in one of those?” He’s honestly curious about it, as well.

One of the bowls is carefully set next to the man, before Kaylee takes up residence on a stool on the opposite side of the table. “I wouldn’t have taken a no anyhow,” she jokes lightly as she settles the bowl in front of her and pushes sleeves out the way. “Never was much for eating alone.”

Having never really gotten the hang of chopsticks, Kaylee opts for a fork. Time is taken to wind the noodles on the tines, her expression thoughtful. Maybe considering how to answer his question. “They are having a great time. Carl will be sad he missed you.” The youngest of the Sumter kids a people person like his mother. “I left Joseph to do the rounds. I needed to get out of the crowds.” There she was still surrounded, but it wasn’t as bad as wading through the masses. “Of course, then my stomach started growling.” And here she was. Fork full of noodles disappear into her mouth.

Go figure, Luther would make that comment while she has a mouthful of food. There is a stifled laugh, fingers pressing on her lips as she quickly finishes chewing. Finally, she gives him an amused look. “Really?” The idea and mental image of Joseph in something like her gets a laugh. “No. He’s in a.. What is it called? Happi?” A few guys walk by wearing that exact outfit, she motions to them, “Like that. To be honest, he just wanted to wear regular clothes; but the kids were pretty insistent. I’m almost wishing I had just gone jeans and a shirt. I mean look at you all hot stuff, catching the ladies eyes,” she teases, noting his own dress, with a motion of her fork towards the retreating women. “Jane best watch out.”

"I'll swing by another night," Luther replies, not exactly making a promise but his word is largely truth-based to begin with. Thus, implying that if her family's around, he'll be around to encounter Carl and the others. If they aren't distracted by the festivities.

Luther hides the faint smile around curtain of noodles brought up by the pair of chopsticks in his hand. Somewhere, some time ago, he'd learned his way around the utensils, likely courtesy of Jane that he managed to retain the skill. The man chews thoughtfully when she points out the other festival goers in their happi coats, then turns back to Kaylee, amused at the mental image of Joseph in the coat as well.

"If your kids had insisted, I'd've probably indulged them too," confesses Luther with a short chuckle. Her comment about his appearance, though, brings a faint color to his face and he turns his eyes down to focus on the food again. "She's got nothing to worry about." Luther clears his throat lightly and picks up the small paper cup of water provided for a sip.

The color of his cheeks and comment about Jane gets a chuckle, a mischievous smile, pleased that she was successfully able to tease him. “Sorry. I shouldn’t tease like that.” Head dipping down a bit, blue gaze concentrating on the bowl in front of her. Turing back to the subject of her children, ”The kids do have that way about them,” Kaylee comments conversationally, concentrating on taking a few more bites. “I swear they learned it from Joseph. Man can lay on a guilt trip with the best of them.”

Eating on a mouthful of noodles, Kaylee looks up at the shimmering lights above them, barely seen past the glow of the lanterns. She starts to say something about them, but stops herself, with things being a little weird between them.

“How about you?” Kaylee finally asks after, bringing her attention back to earth. “Enjoying all of these festivities? Jane wasn’t able to get away to come out and join you?”

Luther shakes his head at her apology for teasing, forgiving in an instant even if his face is a little pink for it. The notion of the kids getting characteristics from Joseph gets a chuckle when he looks over at Kaylee. “You sure it’s from him and not the monther?” he counter-teases mildly, “Although he’s a pastor. Guess he does have one-up on you for experience in that regard.”

The third noodle bowl somehow’s disappeared already, which Luther stacks on the other two and drags over the fourth provided by Kaylee’s generosity. But he doesn’t start slurping right away, glancing over at the telepath when she’s looking up at the aurora. And then his gaze drops back down to the noodle bowl when she turns back to him. “Yeah, no… Her work keeps her busy,” he excuses of the other woman’s absence. “Plus, she’s Korean.” As if that might explain it all. He looks up from the bowl, a faint, wan smile in his features in thinking on the woman of note.

The dark, polished wooden table top reflects soft lighting like a night scape with pinpoints of stars. Outside, in the true night, the green-blues of the aurora in the velvet black shimmer and dance, visible through the glass of the residence of the Vice President. It’s across the table that Luther aims his eyes, fondness in his grey gaze for the blonde woman seated across from him. The moment of quiet is one he savors, moreso than the pasta dish set before him even though the scent of the spaghetti is quite enticing as well. “You look beautiful,” Luther remarks to Kaylee, a smile accompanying it, an affectionate twist pulling a corner of his mouth further up. It’s a lead up to a more crooked thought as he studies her face.


“Ex Pastor,” Kaylee points out a touch blandly, “I tried, but too much happened to him. He didn’t feel qualified anymore, but he found another callin’.” Her fork pushes the noodles around in her bowl, but it seems for the moment she is truly distracted. That same faint smile is reflected back as Kaylee looks back over at the man sitting across from her.

It was one of those rare nights and like him, Kaylee was enjoying the quiet moment. A date night she joked. Still the house is dark and the pair of them are tucked into the breakfast nook with only the light of candles pilfer from elsewhere in the huge house to light their faces. It made her think of that simple little apartment she had. She missed it sometimes.


Blue eyes are momentarily distracted by the shifting patterns outside the window, but when his voice cuts through the silence, it pulls her attention like a moth to a flame. Luckily, the candles cover the flush of her cheeks at his compliment. “If you consider circles under the eyes beautiful.” It’s a tease, the telepath always preens a little. Leaning forward, arms resting on the table to bracket her own dinner, Kaylee reaches for the fluted glass of sparkling non-alcoholic cider. Painted nail click against the crystal, while she studies his candle lit form.

”That’s okay though,” Kaylee says softly her own smile turning a bit mischievous, “Should see what I’m looking at. A rather handsome and might I add, very sexy man.” Watching him over the top of her glass, as she sips at the cider and gives his crooked thought a little help, adding a bit of flair. Being in a relationship with a telepath had its perks, something he had learned early on in their relationship.

“They are,” Luther replies of the circles under her eyes, “as long as they’re on your face.” Was that smooth enough? His crooked smile turns a little cheesy for it. Not having changed from the day’s clothes yet, Luther glances down to his suit briefly at her remark about his own appearance, and he’s adjusting the tie knot to give is a slight loosening when her ability gives his thoughts a slight boost. He looks up again, arching a brow at her.

His hand releases from the tie’s knot, instead moving pluck up the fork beside his plate of pasta. “That’s cheating,” rumbles Luther with a non-accusatory tone. In truth, he enjoys the bit of inner communications that not even their Secret Service detail can listen in on. Not that they’d want to, probably. “And besides, you want to have some of this. I know it seems like just spaghetti, but I heard the chef put some truffle oil or shavings or something in it.” It’s supposed to be good. Though he can’t help but feel, in that moment of distraction, a slight pang of guilt for having the privilege of indulging in such decadence. He too remembers the simple New York apartment and their takeout dinners.

To cover the restlessness of that feeling, and the feeling of restless energy actually tugging at his ability’s edges, Luther tucks in to the meal for good measure. It’s not like they can eat like this in front of other officials either.

Neither one of them have shed their ‘work clothes’, so use to being dressed like this for hours on end. Kaylee is still in the dark blue pinstripe power suit that she wore for the days press conference and her hair piled very neatly, done by people whose whole life is just making the Vice President look good. All part of the job.

Retrieving her own fork, Kaylee hesitates a little watching her husband tuck into the food. It was nice not having eyes on them, snapping pictures while they try to enjoy their food. Digs into the spaghetti, starving from such a busy day. Kaylee savors the food, it was so good; but just like Luther, it felts strange dining so finely.

“Hey,” She says to catch his attention, leaning across the smaller table for his hand, rings on her fingers glimmering in the flame of the candles. “We should plan a trip to the beach house again… Go to that restaurant you took me too. Remember—”

One moment Kaylee is talking to her husband in the darkened room, the next the world is loud, bright, and full of mental hums and other external sounds. There is a grimace and her hand touches her head, pushing back against the taxing of her mental shields. Eyes close for a moment, while she tries to get her thoughts straight.

Wait. No that wasn’t her husband, Joseph was elsewhere with her kids. Her three kids. Eyes snap open and she finds herself looking at Luther across from her. He can see the flicker of fear, “Luth—”

Reluctantly letting go of his hand, Kaylee allows herself a moment — between bites of amazing pasta — to finally slide her shoes off. One by one, they clatter to the tiled floor and she gives a relieved sigh, rubbing at the ball of her foot. Released from their torture, her feet throb with a dull ache. “I think on tap for tomorrow is a long soak.,” she grouses softly, taking another bite of her food. There is a slight tilt of her head and a sly arch of her brow, “Will you be joining me, Mr —”

Whatever she started to say is interrupted by sound coming from the baby monitor. Josephine was stirring, grunts and soft sounds coming through the speaker. Any quiet time they’ve managed to find in the past year has been at the mercy of that tiny little girl.

The vision that plays out in Luther's eyes, mind, being, has the man totally stopped and staring blankly into a middle distance. It's not that he hasn't experienced flashes of other moments before. But that is trauma coming back to haunt him. The hallucination (is that what it is?) he experiences throws him in a completely different manner. One moment, he's staring at Kaylee in a way behind the flickering lights of candles on an intimate table setting. In the next he's staring at her in a completely different way under the shimmering hues of the aurora and starlight in a casual table setting.

"What… what's going on," Luther utters, voice catching in his throat, twisted in confusion. His gaze lowers briefly to frozen hands, to the weak grip on the chopsticks he holds. He remembers to breathe. But only just, as that feeling of something far deeper than mere affection lingers, clinging to him as he stares with furrowed brows at the telepath across the table.

"Don't get up. Stay. Eat." Luther bids her, a hand lifting to stay her from rising. He pushes up to his feet instead, circling the table and stepping by her side. The hand he'd held up briefly brushes her shoulder as he heads to the nearby nursery room. It's not far, as she can still feel his mental hum. Luther's voice can be heard over the baby monitor as he soothes the baby back to sleep.

His hands are already warm, gently rubbing on Josephine until she settles. It doesn't take long. When he's stepping back into their small dining area, Luther has loosened and pulled off his tie somewhere, and most likely left the suit jacket in the same place. He doesn't return to his seat, however, and instead slides up behind her. He bends, leaning down as his hand reaches to cup the side of her face and tilt her chin up to him.

It doesn't take much convincing to let him go settle their daughter. He even earns a thankful smile, when his hand brushes her shoulder. He was so good with Josephine; and, Kaylee enjoyed watching them together. When Luther’s rumble croons through the baby monitor, she can't help a smile full of pride and love for the man.

Busying herself with eating a few more bites and listening, Kaylee savors the rare moment of quiet. No press, no urgent meetings; just the sound of Luther's voice, the clink of her fork, and probably the best spaghetti she has ever had.

There is a subtle shift of her head when she hears his approach, carefully setting down the wine glass in the process. It is done just in time for him to come up behind her and feel his feverish hand on her face. The warmth makes her own skin prickle at the sensation, while her breath catches in a sort of anticipation as he urges her to tip her head back.

The gaze that meets his is intense and has the weight of her emotions behind it. Her own hand lifts to gently hold that hand again her face. “I love you,” she says breathless at the sight of him looking down at her.

And then she is once again assaulted by noise, but Kaylee barely notices. For a handful of moments, she levels a look at her Security Chief with that same intense look of love.

A hand covers her mouth as it all sinks in. The intensity of what Kaylee feels for the Luther is overwhelming. She needed to get out of there, put some distance between her and the man.

She knows he’s been feeling just a little off the past few days. The fever-like heat of his hand is but one indicator, and that Luther’s mind has been aware of press of the energy around him. The restlessness he feels acts like a counter to her exhaustion. The intensity with which his gaze meets her is no less intense. At those three words, he smiles a small smile and bends down the rest of way to kiss her deeply.

The sensation of the hallucination doesn’t fade immediately even as Luther blinks, still frozen in a lingering moment as he returns to present reality. Then, once he remembers he can move, does so with an abrupt stand and staggering back a couple of steps from the small, round table. He knows immediately by her expression, hand over mouth, that she’s had the experience too. Luther swallows dryly, speechless in the moment.

When he finds his voice again, it’s tight, tense, filled with embarrassed uncertainty. And guilt. “I’m sorry,” is all he can bring himself to say. It’s clear he doesn’t understand what’s happening either, but he turns and starts to make a hasty, impromptu retreat.

There is a part of her that wants to chase after him, to stop him from leaving; but, as strong as the temptation is, the telepath stays frozen in place. Hands grip at the edge of the tiny table to keep herself there. Kaylee knows that to follow him would be a very bad idea. Especially, as the emotions and the sensation of his lips linger long after is he swallowed by the crowd.

A few moments after that, Kaylee remembers to breath again, with a gasp. Fingers move to touch her lips and rub at them, as if she could dash those feelings - both emotional and physical - away. It was wrong to even think about. You are happily married! she wants to shout at herself and the thoughts swirling through her mind.

In the back of her mind, there is excitement there… a low chuckle drifts from that dark corner. It was enjoying this too much.

Kaylee shifts to get up, getting ready to make her own retreat, but…

It is with a soft satisfied sigh that she meets that kiss, something tender with a slowly intensifying heat to match his own. Exhaustion is dashed away with that first kiss, suddenly aware of the need surrounding both of them. Kaylee will only make it worse, as her ability curls around Luther’s mind, while at the same time her hand moves to cup the back of his neck and prevent him from breaking the kiss too soon. Lips reluctantly part when he crouches long enough to scoop her up into his arms, intent on taking her back to their room and continue what was started.

Back in her own body again, she finds herself on her feet. Turning to hurry in the opposite direction as Luther, Kaylee’s fingers curled into the fabric of her Yukata, so that she can lift it a little and ensure that she isn’t going to trip as she flees, feeling exposed out there among the crowds.

Even as they put distance between each other, it won’t matter. The visions are not done with them. They have so much more to show. Pulling Luther and Kaylee into a world that is not their own and showing something that could have been. Heat and passion, skin on skin, limbs tangled in the sheets and with each other….

In the end, much to their dismay, they will know each other in the most intimate way that two people could, without ever physically touching.

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