Not A Hangover Kind Of Night?


etienne_icon.gif kaylee_icon.gif margaux_icon.gif

Scene Title Not A Hangover Kind Of Night?
Synopsis After a rather long night, a stop is made at the Trade Commission for a bit of breakfast.
Date June 07, 2018

Staten Island Trade Commission: Penthouse

Summer rain pounds down in a droning cacophony. It's wet out here on the island. Humidity settles into all the nooks and crannies of the Staten Island Trade Commission, warping wood and gathering as fine, damp condensation on the glass windows overlooking Arthur Kill.

Margaux is happy to be inside this morning, watching boats drift on the water from the arm of a leather sofa in one of the building's common areas. She's also happy to have been given the opportunity to play hostess to a new face, even if she can't claim responsibility for the breakfast spread that's been laid out for Kaylee and Etienne at the table.

"Leo's personal chef is from Manchester," she's telling Kaylee. "People are always saying that English food is so bland, but you really have to try the tomatoes. He fries them in the leftover bacon fat and finishes it all off with just a little too much cracked pepper. Literally the best cure for a hangover."

She assumes the previous night was a rough one.

She's not wrong.

There's a small feast to choose from: fresh eggs from the lavender farm that was once Miller Airfield, a bowl of baked beans flavored with brown sugar, fried toast, thick slabs of fatty bacon, and what looks like some sort of blood sausage sliced so thin that it's blackened and caramelized on the edges.

Tea and coffee, too. It wouldn't be a full English breakfast without it.

Etienne hasn't slept.

And he looks it. Rain has made rat tails of his lengthy hair, and there are shadows around his eyes. The smell of the greenbelt has embedded itself within his leathers and the grime dark on his skin, gathered under his nails, and spattered on his boots. Maybe if he'd returned with something — a teenage girl thief, perhaps, or the winnings she'd taken with her upon her disappearance — he'd have insisted on digging Alister up out of where he's buried himself from the night before.

But all he has to show for his efforts is Kaylee Sumter-Ray, COO of Raytech, and that's a harder prize to explain.

He hasn't slept or eaten, and so he does this latter thing now, scraping food onto his plate and spearing it with whatever utensil is handy. He's filled a cup with black coffee and brown sugar, steaming away at his elbow.

"Eat something," he directs to Kaylee, his senses attuned to the presence of the telepath, and it's to Margaux he says, "She'll be staying here 'til nightfall at least. Then I'll see her across the waters."

The telepath doesn't look much better than the man at the table, her hoodie is draped on the back of her chair, drying out. Her blonde hair flat against her head, the humidity is rarely kind to it when it is this bad. She is exhausted, not resting much due to the anxiety of leaving her bodyguard behind and of course… what is Joseph thinking right now? The downside of the world now is the lack of communications.

"I appreciate this, Ms. Maxwell."

A hangover she says. Kaylee is barely containing the amusement at that assumption. While Margaux has a similar talent as the Raytech executive, clearly, she doesn't have the same issues with it. In fact, she takes a moment to make sure nothing has been slipped into that coffee which has been fixed up how she likes… but last she needed was a splash of something stronger in it.

The direction, given by Etienne, gets a lightly annoyed and rather flat look; but, she is awfully hungry and when she is stressed out, food tends to be her go, too. So, she works on adding food on the plate, being sure to add some of those tomato's that were suggested. "If it won't be too much of an inconvenience for you or your brother," she adds, since it is only polite.

Margaux gives a fluttery, dismissive wave of her hand. "Don't you worry about my brother," she says. "He could do with a few more inconveniences in his life. Might even toughen him up."

At this, she flashes a sly smile at Etienne, who is plenty tough already. "We'll get you into some clean clothes after breakfast," she promises Kaylee, even if she's shamelessly admiring the smuggler's physique, as she often does. "You look like you might be about my size. Maybe your tits are a little smaller."

"If your brother's not dead in a Rookery gutter," Etienne says around a mouthful of bacon and blood sausage, "he's tougher than he looks."

Or something, anyway. Etienne eats with a kind of dogged relentness that is slow and steady and probably uncaring about the taste of whatever he's forking into his mouth, snagging a slice of fried bread with dirty fingers and tearing off a bite with a wolfish flash of teeth. "Last I heard of him, he was screaming for the traffickers to be razed to the ground. Careful he don't start a war where we don't need none."

Comments about tits don't get a bat of an eye from him, anyway, as conscious of social niceties as he is about table manners.

It's not like Kaylee was dressing to impress, a glance down at her t-shirt and jeans, then at glance across to Alister's sister. Someone else might balk at the mention of chest size, but it's paid no mind. "No need for that really." Last thing Kaylee needed was to dress like the woman across her from. "I'll be going home soon enough. A day in these won't kill me." Picking up a slice of bacon, she adds, "I appreciate the offer though."

As the conversation turns, and she is thankful for it, the telepath goes quiet listening and eating. Of course, like the other woman, it's hard not to admire Etienne's physique. The dark parts of her mind especially appreciated it and it forces her to drop her eyes to plate in front of her. "Sounds like an exciting time out on the island," she comments blandly. Yet they wanted Raytech to invest… they have no plans in investing in a potential war. An interesting tidbit for her brother. Something that might or might not be an advantage for them.

Margaux had been about to draw a sip from her coffee. She doesn't. Watches Etienne for a few seconds longer from behind the rim of her mug, instead, then redirects her focus back to Kaylee with finely arched brows as if to ask is this true?

Demanding tributes of fire and blood seems like something Alister would do. The very idea that he'd draw human traffickers like the Arrowood brothers into a conflict with the Trade Commission has the blood draining from her face.

"So," she says in a small voice, "not a hangover kind of night, I guess. What happened?"

Good question.

Etienne is silent a moment longer, but stops attacking his food. Just chews it, elbows on the table, fork turned between his fingertips, ducking a look aside to Kaylee, before looking back to Margaux. It's probably not in his interests to tell to Margaux what Alister already hadn't, but it's also not in his interests to see Alister turned loose on the patchwork system of power that keeps Staten Island functioning as it does — no matter what his ambitions may be.

He sets down fork, picks up his coffee. "Negotiations turned to a fire fight," he says. "It was always going to, but Alister had it figured he'd be the one pulling the trigger on it. He and the pussy cat made it out. The little princess left with the money. Tried tracking her down, but she slipped through the cracks.

"She'll turn up," he adds, and reaches to spear up some more bacon rashers with his table knife.

Kaylee's just over here quietly chewing her food, watching the back and forth, trying not pull any attention to herself. The glance her way from Etienne is missed since she is really trying not to stare at the man. Plus, her whole reason for being at the island was that princess. Though now she knows all the story of what happened up to that point in time.

Would that have stopped Kaylee from helping Sibyl? Probably, not. It's always good to know what you are stepping into though. So she is happy to listen, while forking off a bite of those peppery tomatoes… not horrible. "You're right, Margaux. These are not bad at all."

"It's not the girl I'm worried about." Margaux rises from the arm of the sofa and crosses the room on her bare feet, silk robe floating open as she moves to abandon her cup of coffee for an ornate silver tin that had been sitting on the table within arm's reach of Kaylee.

It turns out to contain two clean rows of tightly packed menthol cigarettes. She selects one with a trembling hand and shimmies it free. "Fuck," she says. "Fuck."

It isn't because she can't seem to locate a lighter.

"How bad is it? Like, Hindenburg bad or 9/11 bad?"

There's a pause in his grazing as Etienne tries to pick out whatever nuance Margaux is getting at between those two disasters, puzzlement edged into his usually inexpessive countenance as he angles a blue-eyed look across at her. Unlike her fussing with her cigarettes, he seems less anxious about the outcome of last night when it comes to the fate of the Trade Commission.

Or extreme anxiety has spent him on the last of his energy. It's hard to say.

He clatters down his fork and rises to his feet. He'd foregone the peppery tomatoes, himself. "Ask your brother," he says, with a dismissive display of fang, "when he crawls back in 'ere." Standing, he drains his coffee, setting down an emptied cup. "I'm gonna ask you be watched," he says, to Kaylee directly, now. "For your safety and ours. Don't say we ain't do nothing for you." That part may be ironic.

It's hard to tell. "Suggest you get sleep," he adds, less like dismissal.

Either of those would be bad. Kaylee's knowledge on any subject that comes to Staten is pretty lacking. So, the fact that the other woman is going straight to a pair of the worse disasters, makes her look up from the food on her plate to Margaux. Cause that sounds bad.

The telepath doesn't have the energy to be argumentative about having people watch her. To be fair, she doesn't blame them. It could be argued she is a rival here, since a deal was never made. "I wouldn't ever dream of saying such a thing."

The pirate gets her full attention when he stands, brows lift a bit. "Yeah, sure… Sleep." Easy for him to say. She waves a fork his way, "Fine, but only if you do, too. You look about ready to fall over." She gives him a knowing look and small smile. "Till later, Mr. Saint James," Kaylee adds, spearing that last bite on her plate. Her granny always taught her to finish what was on her plate.

Margaux snaps her cigarette tin shut and tucks it into the pocket of her robe. The fear in her hands and the tense coil of her shoulder and neck muscles undergoes a transformation into something with edges as sharp as the acrylic nails she wears on her fingers.

She stalks past Kaylee, past Etienne, and thunders out of the room like the world's smallest, most compact storm cloud.

Chances are that she waits until she thinks she's out of earshot to do what she does next.

Even if she isn't.


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