logan_icon.gif sasha2_icon.gif tania_icon.gif

Scene Title Misbehave
Synopsis A night of fun is interrupted by conversation more sobering than the coffee.
Date October 2, 2011

Eltingville Blocks

Honestly, even though Tania is now home, sometimes it's easy to forget that she's there. She's been tucked into her room, not really seeking anyone out and generally being forgettable. And tonight is no different.

Except for the fact that she assumes, from the quiet, that the house is empty enough for her to slip downstairs into the kitchen to find something to eat. Maybe Delia cooked something. One can hope. So the girl stands in front of the fridge, door held open in the fashion of many a hungry, but indecisive teen. A foot thumps up and down in a rapid, nervous gesture, but she somehow manages not to make too much noise with it. Perhaps by being barefoot.

The fridge isn't in much better shape than the rest of the house. It's not that Sasha lives like an animal, it's just that he is an animal and cleanliness has never been high on his list of priorities outside the operating room. Empty beer bottles sit discarded in the nearby sink and provide both sustenance and shelter for the colonies of fruit flies that have made their own homes inside of them.

A half-eaten container of beet salad sits on the bottom shelf of the bridge next to a bottle of milk several days past its expiration date. If there was ever a fork that went with it, it's long gone by now, lost somewhere in the trash scattered across the house's small, cramped rooms.

Under any other circumstances, the changing seasons and sharp drop in temperature might be cause for concern in a building as poorly insulated as this one, but cold air means everything smells just a little less sour, and that's a blessing.

Down the hall, the front door booms open with such force that it leaves a hole in the drywall before it bounces back on the man who kicked it in. "Nu vse, tebe pizda," comes the snarled curse at its heels, so there's no real cause for alarm. Sasha is just threatening the door.

Thump. Hands, flat, connect with Sasha's back, a strike and a push, somewhere between playful and violent. "You fucking gorilla."

Vitriol isn't present in Logan's voice, though. Halfway amused, husky from smoke and drinking and a long, long night. He is not dressed in a uniform, but certainly to convention of civilian watch, all somber colours and a radio at his belt. His knuckles are red, in need of ice, and a new mark at his lip goes— well, largely ignored.

They bring with them the scent of a long, cold evening, rain, smoke, and heavy footfalls, and a certain sort of live-wire energy of possibly having misbehaved.

Finding things in such a state brings Tania around to just closing the door again and settling on a glass of water. She has to wash one out, though, because she lives with animals. And this is what is interrupted as the door bangs open. She jumps, glass falling from her hand and crashing into the sink. It breaks, but the girl steadies herself instead of bothering to clean it up. And once she's steady — and sure it's people who belong here — she comes over to the doorway of the kitchen to lean against the frame and give the pair of them a look over.

Her head tilts, debating if she should interrupt or slink off, given that either has equal likelihood of being noticed at the moment.

"You both look like you had fun," she says, although by her tone, she may not be sure she has the right word.

By the time Sasha has realized he's taken off the door handle in his haste, he's already trying to put it back on again. Clumsily, he tries to fit the pieces together, but only succeeds in misplacing one of the screws needed to fasten it in place.

Oh well.

He pulls the door shut behind him instead and puts his faith in God it stays that way before lumbering into the kitchen. "Very fun," he says, and deposits the broken handle on the countertop with more force than is necessary. "Is good. This one-" Sasha jabs a finger in Logan's general direction. "Meow meow, hiss hiss, scratch scratch. Bleeding everywhere."

Logan is taking off his jacket, a military looking thing that looks rough woven and incompatible with the nice waistcoat worn beneath it. Pressed shirt, no tie, all black and grey. Pale-eyed attention rests on Tania for a moment, who's very presence always has a way of tipping him towards the stranger dreams he's had lately (for all that none of them hold a candle to Hokuto's adventures).

"Just business," is his interpretation of events. A wry smile, thin, glint of canine. "Another day at the office, or taking the dog for a walk, pick one. Pardon me," he adds, winding around Sasha as cat-like as he is being accused of in order to get to the freezer.

"Who was bleeding, them or you?" Tania asks, taking them both in as she asks. But she doesn't seem to expect an answer as her gaze follows Logan through the kitchen. "John," she says, the name sounding strangely second nature, even though she has probably never called him that before, "There's a towel by the sink." Because she was just using it.

Her gaze swing back to Sasha, though, and a hand comes to his arm. "You need ice, too?" she asks. "Or coffee?" That part is added after a pause.

Sasha checks his hands, inspecting the backs of his knuckles, which are a little more durable than Logan's, though not by much. The blood is on the front of his shirt, and it doesn't seem to belong to him — or to the Englishman. It doesn't take much imagination to guess what just business really means.

He picks at the stains with his fingers and makes a low, unimpressed sound at the back of his throat. Tch. "Da," he says absently, slinging his leather coat over the back of a nearby chair. His poor shirt is next, peeled off in one long, sore-looking motion. Maybe he didn't escape their encounter unscathed after all. "One coffee. Hot."

Towel collected. Filled with ice, which Logan only pauses from shaking all of it into it when Tasha extends the offer. Arching an eyebrow at her, he offers the half-depleted ice tray. John is new, and weirdly familiar.

True to form, he worst injuries on him are one to the face and the rest on his own knuckles, which he opts to tend to first, the crunch of ice sounding as painful as it probably looks to put cold towel to swelling knuckles. Leans, gaze landing on the mess of the kichen, and laughs dryly.

"Lived in a place like this once," he says. "Grew up in, actually. The more things change. I'd like a coffee."

Tania takes in the blood, but she doesn't say anything about it. Or what impression she now has of their business for the night. She doesn't miss the soreness, either. It shows in a flick of worry before she looks back to Logan again. "Two coffees," she says, and she steps around the both of them to grab a kettle and coffee grounds.

"Did we grow up in a place like this?" Tania asks Sasha, because if they did, it was hidden from her. As one might expect. Once she has the water heating up, she goes to get some ice for Sasha, too, and ends up pushing a couple handfuls into his discarded shirt. If there's another option around, she's not wasting time looking for it.

Sasha braces his hands against the small of his back, mid-stretch, and feels the base of his spine release with an audible pop. Now he can relax.

He swivels the chair around and plunks himself down on its seat so he can lean forward and straddle it. His neck cranes as he looks around the room, gaze lingering a beat too long on the mess in the sink. "Sometimes," he says, then rests his arms on its back and his chin on his arms. "But sometimes no also. Cleaner for you, I think. Mama's little kitten."

His leg jostles up and down. Impatient in the same way Tania's bare foot had been tapping against the rumpled linoleum before. "This bothers you?" It sounds more like an accusation than a question.

"No, we love it."

Blandly, from his spot in the kitchen. Logan's smile is all the more crooked from the injury its taken. "Thin walls, no insulation, cheap grog, everyone in and out in all hours. The Homeland Security is new," he adds. "Police didn't much care for my neighbourhood, even if places like this were built purely just to keep people in a place. Tania, darling," is ironic, all precise enunciation, "will you also please retrieve my smokes from my coat after you put the kettle on."

The accusation has Tania looking back at her brother, trying to figure out which is the right answer. But she's saved from having to actually do that when Logan speaks up. She glances his way with a small, but crooked smile. But she looks back to Sasha to note, "I did not ask to be her kitten." Her shoulder rolls, but she steps back over to the stove to get the coffee propering going.

She looks up at the request, but also doesn't answer Logan, either. Not vocally, anyway. But once the kettle is on, she steps away to go dig through his jacket for cigarettes. "I do not think," she says from the next room, "that Homeland Security cares much for this neighborhood, either." But, perhaps, she uses a different meaning there.

"You are my kitten now." Sasha stills his foot. He's in a mood, and possesses just enough emotional awareness to realize it before he takes it out on his sister any further. Drums his fingers on the back of the chair instead. His English is far from perfect; Tania's double-meaning eludes him, but he can sense there's something else happening underneath her words and immediately looks to Logan for a translation.

Perhaps she uses a different meaning. Logan, who isn't bad at English, uses one for the word 'care', he thinks. He meets Sasha's look. "Little Russia's not got a lot of faith in the local law enforcement," he says, all drawl, fingers wiggling where they peek from ice-filled towel. "She suspects, perhaps, they're not here out of the interests and welfare of the Evolved they've been directed to protect. Perhaps they might even be here to keep us all in line."

This grand conspiracy is undermined with his matter of fact drawl, stating the obvious through sharp teeth. It's all perfectly audible to Tania herself in the other room.

"She's got your penchant for distrust of benevolence."

A look is given to Sasha for his words, but Tania doesn't protest further than that. And when she comes back in with cigarettes — and lighter, because one is not good without the other — in hand, she nods to Logan's interpretation. "Yes, I suspect this," she says, crossing the small room and pulling herself up to sit on the counter. There's only a brief pause before she holds out the delivery toward Logan. "I will trust benevolence when I see it," she adds. She doesn't, in their local law enforcement.

Of course, that doesn't disprove his point.

"Okay," is quickly becoming Sasha's favorite English word. It absolves him of any responsibility.

The problem with animals, humans being the one exception, is that they're too easily satisfied. Sasha has his family, a roof over his head, and a full belly — most of the time. Until one of those things is threatened, he seems content to reach out his hand and gesture for Logan's cigarettes and lighter as soon as the Englishman is finished with them. "Use better words maybe," he suggests. A pause. Sasha corrects himself: "No, sorry. Easier."

Cigarettes and lighter in hand, a muttered 'cheers', Logan lights up, and then slips the latter into the plastic of the former, and tosses them underhand to Sasha. In a steady stream, he exhales that first inhale of smoke. Thoughtful.

"I don't want to die in another fucking ghetto."

The conviction is in the words. His tone remains as easy as it's been, contemplating the possibility of such an ignoble death. He thinks about the woman found hanging in the street, then stops thinking about it with a flick of ash into sink.

At least this time, Tania smiles gently at Sasha's words. "I will try to remember," she says, a tease on her words, but lightly enough to be easily missed. All in all, she doesn't seem to mind the smoke, she only watches the pack switch hands idly. And then, over to Logan. "What is there to do about it?" she asks, half resignation and half hopeful. She knows the answer, but wants to have it wrong. "The soldiers came in here — " she starts, then stops. Rewrites her words. Starts again. "I do not think it is very safe in here." Here, the house. Here, the neighborhood. Here, the city. It's hard to say where her judgment ends, really.

Sasha snatches the cigarettes out of the air. "Is not very safe anywhere," he says. "At least in this fucking ghetto you are respect." He juts his chin at Logan's bloodied knuckles as he maneuvers a cigarette out of the package and into his mouth. "But you go. I follow."

He takes his first drag from the cigarette and spins the lighter between his fingers. Sasha is happier when he has something to do with his hands. 'This matters to me, nothing else."

Logan rolls his cigarette between teeth and tongue as he ices the other hand, looking sidelong at Sasha. A valid point is made. And where else could they go? They could turn to the terrorists, and we all know how many friends they have in those ranks. The amount of begging it might take to get let in the door. Or to survive the encounter at all.

Ice numbs bruises, diminishing them before they can begin. Respect is important.

His gaze skates to Tania again — the one dragged in the way of this venture — and her transparent displeasure. "Is good," Logan says.

It may be odd, but something in their exchange seems to have comforted Tania. Or, at least, she slumps less. Her lips pull down less. She slides off the counter, turning to lower the heat on the coffee. It's boiling. "And where you go, I follow, too." Lucky him.

She comes over to Sasha, putting a hand on his arm. "A few more minutes for the coffee. Or it will be too weak. I will be upstairs." Where she tends to linger. When she reaches the doorway, she turns back to glance at Logan again. "Good night."

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