Mail Call


dearing_icon.gif francis_icon.gif francois_icon.gif huruma_icon.gif nathalie_icon.gif

Scene Title Mail Call
Synopsis What's in the box?
Date July 30, 2019

The Bastion

The door from the street swings in on the lobby of the Bastion, a man in a greyed brown uniform and a smart cap entering back first, pulling a dolly inside with him. The wheel bumps over the threshold, and he whistles a tune cheerily as the packages on the dolly bounce. The man adjusts the cap over his brow, looking down at the clipboard laid on top of the boxes. A glance to them, then he pulls a scanning device away from his side.

The whistling stops as the man lifts his head. "Hell-ooooo?" he calls out, laconic and easy-going. "Got some packages I need someone to sign for."

She may not be as loud or as bold as a dog when the door rings, but Huruma still has that sense of hers. Someone new here. The deliveryman's voice cuts past the noise of filing folders and boxes, her hunt for whatever she is after getting briefly postponed.

The dark woman lingers on the shaded landing of the stairs at the man's back, skimming for any other attentive ears, silent. He's not likely to notice her until he turns around; Huruma may well be seeing if anyone else comes to take it. She will if she has to, but - - not feeling the people today. Don't make her do stuff. Thank you.

Luckily for Huruma, Nathalie is close by when the call rings through the Bastion. She steps into the lobby, coffee in hand, and she looks the man over as if she might spot something out of place. "I can sign," she says as she steps forward, "you have papers? Credentials?"

It isn't that she's a suspicious person— okay, she is, but it isn't as though Wolfhound is without enemies who might try to pull something. And when she notices Huruma looming at the stairs, she lifts her eyebrows in question. Because if anyone could sense bad intentions, it's Huruma.

“Aw heck,” comes from the lobby stairs up to the second floor. The jingle of a zipper on the leather jacket and thundering bootfalls heralds the arrival of one Francis Harkness, hurrying over to the door. Making a quick stride across the concrete floor, Francis offers an askance glance to Nathalie and Huruma as he comes up behind them.

“Are those my records?” Francis asks with a tip of his chin up into the air. “They’re like a week late and the turntable I got at the Vault is just sitting— ” he cuts himself off, making one small fist gesture and hesitating on taking any more steps forward. A grimace flutters across Francis’ face before he quirks his head to the side and tries to see around the other two.

Shirtless for seemingly no reason, Dearing walks barefoot across the floor out from the direction of the hallway that leads to the bunks, a towel draped over one shoulder. He hooks his thumbs around the belt loop of his jeans, tugging them up a bit to help keep them on without a belt. “Somebody order takeout?” He asks with a furrow of his brows and a motion of his nose to the door, making momentary eye-contact with Francis, before slowly sauntering over with the slap of bare feet on bare concrete.

Francois Allegre, meanwhile, is famously a people-person, but his arrival as subtle and distanced an intrusion as Huruma's. He appears at a shadowed arch at the sound of an unfamiliar voice — any unfamiliar voice is enough, these days — and comes to lean in place, folding his arms. He is in business casual, today, inasmuch as there is any dresscode that Dearing is patently ignoring — maybe it helps in sounding professional when he apologises about Epstein to debt collectors and clientele.

Without his own empathic ability to sweep through SUSPICIOUS STRANGERS like a COURIER, he just observes, a thin smile offered should he catch the man's attention.

The appearance of others is something that is of minimal delight for the man who is just doing his job, Nathalie's coming forward met with a lazy lift of his eye at I can sign. At you have papers?, he starts to lift up the device in his hand, clearly misunderstanding.

Credentials is met with a lack of anything. There's not confusion, just a lack of understanding. "Please?" he asks in his non-New York accent, an upward tick of his brow accompanying the request for clarification. Thankfully, there's Francis's more eager entrance to distract himself with, and then Dearing's… less excitable appearance.

The courier blinks once slowly, finding Francois next. On a hunch, he slowly begins to turn and lo and behold there actually is someone behind him, too. There's no alarm at seeing Huruma, just a general sense of of course there is.

"Uh," he says, ignoring the request for credentials apparently. He wears a badge with his photo pinned to his left breast pocket, though. It identifies him as Dean. "All right, 486… I've got a package for Dunsimi, Harkness, Epstein, and—" Dean has to scroll, and it takes the device a second to catch up with the command. He leans his head back before announcing confidently, "and Beckett-Rucks."

How he gets Dunsimi right and butchers Roux is anyone's guess.

Huruma listens to every part of the others in silence as usual, eyes briefly moving to just Francois. The delivery man turns to go find her there and her expression purses some back to him. Being suddenly surrounded by so many creatures in their lair may be just a little unnerving, but 'Dean' seems to deal.

Dearing, in all his standing out, earns a squinted look as Huruma glides on down the rest of the stairs to approach. Her hand lifts in a passive greeting, senses tuned in and focused.

"Dunsimi." She confirms, voice low. Supposing she will sign for it? "Excuse our…" Brows arch higher, gaze skimming. "Readiness."

“Oh hey, yeah, Harkness here. Alright!” Francis says with a flash of a smile, coming over to stand beside Huruma and — tries to — just hook an arm around her shoulder awkwardly. “Yeah so, does anybody got a pen?” He angles a look up to Huruma. “Do you have a pen on you or just knives?”

Watching the exchange, Dearing arches a brow and motions to Francis. “Hey sign for me and drop it by my door, I've gotta go hit the shower.” He flicks a look over to Nathalie, then Huruma. “I've gotta do a munitions inspection.”

“Oh yeah sure yeah sure,” Francis is quick to agree, a Cheshire smile crossing his face, eyes half-lidded.

“You open my mail I'll stuff you through a mail-slot,” Dearing replies, holding his pants up with one hand and threatening Francis with a brandished fist with the other as he walks back toward the direction of the showers.

I would never,” Francis says in a stage whisper, then looks up at Huruma with a guilty and yet unrepentant expression.

There's a whole lot of personality flying here, and the delivery guy is just trying to drop off some packages. Dean tries not to let his attention pingpong between conversationalists, lest he get caught up in things and fall behind. He does flick a glance between Huruma and Franciss, though, a bit of morbid curiosity. "Use my pen, if you don't mind," he requests. You know, the kind that doesn't have ink but scratches so well into the face of his little handheld. He offers it out for Huruma to take, then swipes the package off the top of his pile, swinging it carefully out to Huruma like it's a bow-topped present.

"There y' go," he titters charmingly. The package is internationally-stamped, gone through travels ground to plane to ground and through customs again all for the sake of making its way to her. The return label states it's from Mihaja and Juwariya.

"I have a pen knife..?" is Huruma's answer for Francis, head angling just so. But she knows she won't need either one. That guilty look of a trickster earns Francis a palm over his face before Huruma gently pushes him back outside of her bubble.

To sign for her package, but also for the sake of pecking order. The deliveryman gets a slip of a closed smile and a murmured thank you; her inspection of the package and its label draw curiosity into her face as she steps aside.

Nathalie has neither pen nor knife on her, so she plays guard dog instead, arms folded as she stares at the delivery guy. Her gaze only shifts to give the Harkness antics and amused side-eye. It may be brief, but it's there. "What's a Beckett-Rucks?" she asks no one in particular, her eyebrow lifted.

"We need someone with x-ray vision," she mutters, mostly to herself as she inches closer to the packages. Curiosity outweighing worry. At least a little.

Something like impatience and curiousity both compel Francois forwards, a look chasing after Dearing as he nears the centre of the foyer. He has a friendly smile ready for Mr Postman, and offers out a hand to receive once the ring of Hounds has abated a little.

"Commander Epstein is not here at the moment," he says. Maybe it's totally conscious, but the mispronunciation of Nathalie's name has him laying on his own natural accent just that little bit thicker. "I can sign for him, s'il vous plait."

Francis Harkness rises over Francois’ shoulder like a moon alighting over snowy mountains. Brows raised, he peers down at the package for Avi, then angles a look over at the side of Francois’ head and then slowly sidesteps around the octogenarian and watches him head over to the delivery man.

Eyes half-lidded like a particularly lazy but mischievous cat, Francis watches Dearing disappear down a hallway and then, as if conspiring with Francois the entire time (Spoilers: he wasn't) asks with cavalier ease, “So, what d’you think Epstein orders by mail? Guns? Guns that shoot smaller guns?”

He eyes Huruma, then Nathalie. Surely one of them must know.

Dean is oblivious to Nathalie's comment at first, in the way that people often don't immediately pick up on things that could be considered condescending, in the midst of trading package for signing pad with Huruma. Francois, on the other hand, and his deliciously French accent makes him do a double take down, wondering if he's messed something up, yet has no idea how.

"Er, right, then," he announces to precisely no one, nodding at Francois and turning the pad out to him. "That also make you…?" he looks down, peering at the first name. "Naaaaa…?"

Isn't Natalie a girl's name?

Blinking twice, Dean keeps a poker face and politely informs Francois, "You can just sign for the rest." He makes indications that once one box is signed for, he should just hit OK and the rest will pop up so he can repeat the process. Then he gets to unseating the rest of the boxes off his dolly, including the large, heavy box on the bottom, the one addressed to Epstein.

"These things get x-rayed back at the office, you know," Dean announces, and then is immediately sure maybe he shouldn't have. Trade secrets and all. He shrugs. "Hell if I know what's in 'em, though."

Huruma does not comment on needing someone with x-ray vision. She knows a guy. Maybe. He might not do that anymore. Or he might be dead. Flint Deckard was an old dog in the wind by the time the war got going.

She debates when to open the box, and for now seems content to tuck it under an arm and continue milling nearby, watchful. Mostly because of Francis, who she spends plenty enough time with to know he behaves better with his old man around. She is definitely not of the mind that she made him worse but she, ah, may have. Accidentally.

"If anything like that, it's more incendiary grenades." Huruma answers, blase, eyes hooded knowingly. "We ran out."

Saying it even knowing it's not grenades- - they wouldn't be getting those by delivery. More seriously, yet with a purr and a smile, "Perhaps uniforms. Wouldn't that be lovely?"

Can he? Great. Francois gives Dean an obliging smile and takes the pad, signing for each one with a glance across at Huruma and Nathalie, then back to Francis. "Too bad we don't have our own X-ray machine," he says, returning to his task, and hitting the last OK. "Or else we would get to find out."

As much as pawing through people's mail is exactly his style.

He extends the pad and stylus back to Dean for when the man is ready to receive them, and asks, "Was there a sending address? Where has all this come from?"

"Well, I mean," Dean says as delicately as he can. Which is indelicate entirely. "There's a sending address usually listed on most mail and packages. It's kind of how it works." He only sounds a little apologetic as he takes back his stylus and handheld, snipping the little pen away and securing the device back to himself on its velcro pad.

The packages have been deposited onto the floor, ready for whoever comes to grab them. Nathalie's smaller one on top marked as from 'EAE' from an address in Sheepshead Bay, sandwiching Francis's records in a similarly clearly marked box …

which just leaves the large package for Avi, curiously without a clear return address.

A detail either unknown or uncared for by Dean, who's already heading for the door pulling the dolly behind him. He lifts one hand in a wave. "Take care," is as much as he says before he's right out the door, returning to the truck he'd boldly left puttering while he stepped inside.

The rectangle of a box stands about knee-height on its long side, which it does, indicated that it should remain This Side UP at all times. It lacks any other indications as to its contents, no markers for fragility. The simple To address is printed on a white sticker in plain font, slapped over the tape line on the top of the box.

Whatever is in Huruma's package will have to wait for an appearance, even if she is caclulating an idea of what it is. Nothing strange, she knows for sure. Now, the one the deliveryman has left for Avi- - that's of interest. The tall woman gives the departing Dean a nod of thanks and a lift of hand, and she studies his back until he is outside, her senses clinging along as he pulls away.


She peers down at the last mystery in the room, not exactly an elephant. A shade of one, maybe? Huruma angles her head at the label, mouth twisting in a somewhat disapproving way.

"The post is not exactly what it used to be, is it?" The temptation to check it for timebombs is a contemplated excuse for opening it. But she refrains. Somehow.

“Maybe it’s a refund on his collection of eye patches and glass eyes?” Francis asks from beside Huruma, eyeing Avi’s package like a vulture eyeing a carcass. “You think he had just the one of each, or a whole closet of them?” His brows kick up as he looks side-long at Huruma. “Follow up: if he only had one eyepatch, how bad do you think it smells?” His eyes narrow.

“This,” Francis says with a look over to Francois, “is the kind of stuff that keeps me up at night.” Certainly not work, in any event.

The magpie shaped like Francis simply gets a shaded look from the straight man of the two, as Huruma silently dares him to get any closer to said carcass.

"Do not be disrespectful." is her first response, lips pursing. There's a difference between that and playful ribbing. Mainly, lack of presence. "Recent years, always more than a spare." Huruma finally mutters, a faint uptick in her expression to satiate Francis before she steps forward to stack her box onto the larger one, and pluck both up. Yes, she is absolutely going to be playing keep away. It's not that she doesn't trust Francis, but in this much- - she doesn't trust Francis.

"I'm locking it in the office, so I'll know if you peek." Huruma tosses this somewhat comically over her shoulder to the younger Harkness before she makes off with the mystery box.

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