hadley_icon.gif brian2_icon.gif

Scene Title Open-Closed-Open
Synopsis In which Brian does not get a tongue-lashing because Mrs. Hadley is having an awful few days.
Date July 8, 2009

Piece of Cake Bakery

The front room of the bakery is a long and narrow one. A great glass window covers the wall facing the street, so that anyone outside can see in. The door is glass as well; on bright days the shop is filled to the brim with sunshine. Drop lamps abovehead help at night, casting a warmer and softer light. Classic black and white tiling collects smudges more often than not on the floor and walls. In the back is a hallway which leads further to the kitchen, a small bathroom for customers to use, and a set of creaky stairs that go up to the second floor. The entire building is warm, and the air is redolent with the scents of pastry both savory and sweet, cookies, muffins, chocolate and fruit, bread and more.

A long, waist-high counter is on the left after stepping inside. The top is flat so purchases can be set down, and baked goods of all sorts are on display inside. Down at the far end is the cash register: leaving means walking past all the tempting wares all over again. Though it isn't particularly fancy, a coffee machine next to the register has a sign that reads "Donations": the cups and plain coffee are free, but change dropped inside goes to local charities. Three small bistro tables sit along the right wall; it's a tight fit, but three (or four if they're close friends) people can sit at each to enjoy a bite before going on their way. A bell above the door jangles merrily whenever it's opened.

Through sheer good luck (or awesome planning on Brian's part) Mrs. Hadley hasn't had a moment alone with her employee for quite some time. And then the radio announced the name of the woman found in a bag, and suddenly it wasn't hard to avoid the old woman at all: she closed the bakery and went upstairs and wasn't seen for quite some time. When she finally comes back downstairs again, it's early early morning, 4am or so; time to work the dough for the day's loaves. She's wearing black, and looking /awfully/ tired, but down she comes anyway.

And at the counter, Brian stands in the darkness playing with some toys. Though his playing is taking apart and reassembling, and his toys are weapons. Spinning around abruptly at the noise of Hadley coming down, Brian blinks through the darkness at the clock. Old people. His guns are pushed behind him quietly, he is dressed sleekly a black button down tucked into black slacks. He doesn't look tired at all, though as she comes down Brian tilts his head at her. "Mrs.Hadley?" He asks softly through the darkness. "Are you alright?"

"There you are." Mrs. Hadley sounds weary as all get-out too. Rather than heading for the back right away, she shuffles her way over to the counter, looking every one of her seventy-odd years under the light she flips on. "Why are you here at such a terrible hour, dear?" Her hands move on automatic pilot to start the coffee-machine on the counter. "Is it every night?"

No use in keeping secrets anymore. "I stay here in case someone needs to find me." He says softly, quietly pushing the gun to try and keep it behind his back and out of Hadley's sight at all times. "With my ability… I can rest, while being awake." He murmurs, giving a little shrug as if hoping she'll just accept that as an explanation. Telling all the details of his ability would be annoying. And wouldnt seem to compliment her mood either. "I'm sorry for lying to you, Mrs.Hadley. I.. I felt like it was necessary."

Her gaze falls. Easy enough to hide the guns for now. "Are you sorry enough that you won't do it again?" Mrs. Hadley asks it quietly, attention mostly on getting the filter set up and the grinds into the bowl. When she has that going, she shuffles over to the small fridge and pulls out a wrapped plate: a single doughnut there, covered over with cinnamon. "Because if you're going to do it again, don't apologize. I'd rather be told it's not my business than lied to, Brian." It would seem the explanation is, in fact, accepted as-is.

Staring at her for a moment, Brian's jaw tightens. "No, I'm not." He answers honestly enough. Folding his arms over his chest. "You have showed me that you care about me for one reason or another, and you've shown me enough that I should at least treat you with as much honesty and respect as I can afford…" He trails off, eyeing her. "What's wrong, Mrs.Hadley?"

The button on the coffee machine pauses it long enough that she can pour herself a cup, then start it up again. There. Paper cup in one hand, doughnut onna plate in the other, she shuffles over to sit at one of the little bistro tables. It requires a hand to the back of the chair first for balance, before she can lower herself down. "Then don't apologize if you don't mean it, and try to just tell me to keep my nose out of things in the future, instead of lying outright." Absent words, distracted. Trembling fingers pick the plastic off the plate. Rather than answer his question, she asks one of her own. "Your memory loss, is it likely to be physical? If it is, I might be able to fix it." But once the plastic is gone, she just sorta picks at the doughnut instead of eating it. "One of my daughters died. You'd think…" her breath escapes in a low rush. "That I'd be used to it by now, wouldn't you? These were her favorites." By the time she's done speaking, it's little more than a mumble.

"I.. I don't know." Winters murmurs softly. "I imagine the people I worked for had a hand in it, though they claim it was from.." A wave of his hand. "I don't know if you paid attention to the news a few months ago, when the bridge collapsed. I was a part of that. Not destroying the bridge but.. I don't remember it, but from what I've heard. I was fighting.. some bad man. They tell me I lost my memory in that. Explosions and whatnot." Winters waves a hand as if it isn't a big deal. "You daughter?" Winters asks, straightening with his brows creasing. "I'm.. I'm so sorry. What, what was her name?"

"If you want to find out, let me know." Mrs. Hadley pushes at the doughnut some, just… moving it around the plate a little. "Izzy." With that, she's shaking her head and rising, leaving the plate and cup behind. "Please leave the sign to closed, dear. And if you can set up a note explaining we'll open again in a few days. I'm not fit for company today either. I have a contract." She stops, moving and talking both, then starts again. "A contract to provide some things for that movie set. I'll take care of that tomorrow, but that's likely to be it for a little while."

"You've done a lot for me, Mrs.Hadley. The least I can do is help you. I am very capable of doing several things at once. If you want me to, I can run things here, while helping you." Winters offers, gesturing to the front of the store. Izzy. For a moment, he closes his eyes as if shaking off a daydream or something, rubbing his face a little he shakes his head again. "Izzy. I'm.. I'm very sorry, Mrs.Hadley. If there's anything I can do.." He trails off.

She stops again then, hand still pressed to the back of the chair for balance, or simply to provide anchor. Mrs. Hadley stands and breathes, as if breathing hurt and she has to do it carefully. "Thank you, dear. If you think you can handle it for a few days on your own, you can try. Just close it up if you get overwhelmed. The police may come by to speak with me about her… I'll try to let you know ahead of time so you can make yourself scarce."

Giving a nod of affirmation, Brian goes to fold his arms over hischest. "You got it, Mrs.Hadley. Yeah, that would be great." He murmurs softly, leaning against the counter. Glancing over his shoulder at the gun still there, disassembled. "Again, Mrs.Hadley. I'm very sorry."

"Thank you and good night, Brian. Please let your sister know I'm praying for her safety." And with that, plate and cup left behind in a rather uncharacteristic show of uncaring, she shuffles back up the stairs, leaning heavily on the railing all the way up.

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