Over Her Head


graeme_icon.gif keira_icon.gif

Scene Title Over Her Head
Synopsis Graeme runs into his half-sister at the mall, they talk, and then she leaves. Very suddenly.
Date February 9, 2011

World Center Mall

It's late morning, and Graeme walks around a corner in World Center Mall, three shopping bags in hand, wearing a pair of faded, worn jeans, a grey dress shirt, and a fairly thick cabled sweater in a shade of blue just lighter than the jeans. One of the first orders of business now that he's decided to stay in New York a bit longer is to get a bit more of a wardrobe, things he likes and will wear; especially given that his roommate seems intent on being social, going out, and things that the man just wouldn't do on his own. But he's getting hungry, and so he's heading over to the food court. Which should also give him time to consider things he hasn't bought yet.

Wednesday morning, nearing noon. It's pretty nice in the mall, relatively free of traffic; most people are at work, or are stuck in the dome, or are sitting by worriedly waiting for news of the dome. Keira Aislinn Fionn…couldn't care less. Nobody that she knows is stuck in there, so she couldn't give a shit who is stuck in there, or how horrible it is for them. Fuck 'em. The customers who were in there don't impact her business too much.

Her face is just healing the last of her rather awful beating, a faintly yellow hue gracing her cheek along with the remainder of a black eye. She wears a black thermal shirt, the sleeves rolled up to reveal her tattooed arms, a pair of tight-fitting jeans that hug her form. She's also got freshly dyed hair, deep red with blonde bangs. She carries a few shopping bags of her own. New clothes, new jewelry, and a snuggie. Her apartment has heat, but snuggies are awesome.

The woman is standing in front of the Chick-Fil-A, quietly debating what she wants to eat. Chicken sandwich? Chicken strips? Chicken salad? Soup? Hmm. Tough decisions to be made!

Graeme leans on an empty stretch of wall, considering where to eat, considering where has the least line, and more importantly, where he can get the most food, when he spies Keira. One hand reaches into the pocket of his jeans, and he's tapping on a cell phone absently, glancing between the cell phone and the woman, and biting his upper lip slightly. The cell phone goes back into his pocket, bags get hoisted easily in one hand, and he walks over, leaning on the pot of one of the fake plants while he too glances at the menu.

After a moment of thoughtfully examining the menu, Keira Fionn steps forward, ordering a deluxe chicken sandwich with cheese, and some of those waffle-cut fries. So tasty. She rather quickly pays for her meal, before going about leaning against the counter, waiting for her food. Once her drink is offered forth, she grabs that, unwrapping the straw and quietly slurping down her soda. A glance is cast about, blue eyes briefly lingering on Graeme, before she's turning back to waiting for her food with raised brows.

It takes a moment, and then Graeme proceeds to order a spicy chicken sandwich, soup, two orders of fries, and a drink. When the task of getting food is taken care of, he turns, taps his foot a few times, and looks over to Keira. Drink in hand but not paid attention to yet, he purses his lips. "You…" he pauses. "You wouldn't happen to be Keira Fionn, would you?"

The a tattooed woman smiles faintly to the clerk as her food is pushed out on the counter, reaching to take the tray of food. She doesn't seem to notice Graeme, looking at her like he is. Then, he actually talks to the woman, and blue eyes turn toward him, brows raising quietly. When he happens to know her name, her brows only raise higher.

It's pretty fortunate that they're in the middle of the mall. If this was anywhere else, Graeme would be face to face with a gun. As it stands, she simply stares at him.

"How th'fuck do you know my name?" She frowns to the man.

"My name's Graeme Fionn," he says, choosing to give the name that's on the first, unamended copy of his birth certificate, rather than the name on his ID card. And he's sort of staring at her, fingers tapping together. "I suppose that's a valid enough question."

He picks up his own tray of food, deftly balancing it, holding the bags, and then with his spare hand, points to a nearby empty table. "Deirdra told me." The statement is detached, dispassionate almost. "It'd be a lot easier to explain if I wasn't standing here with food an' bags an' right in the middle of the pathway." There's a bit of a drawl to his words, but they're calm and level.

Keira almost doesn't catch the last name. Until she does, and suddenly, she's not frowning. She's just staring now. Then he's saying her mother's name. She can only stare in silence as he speaks, her face devoid of any real sign of emotion. When he points, she doesn't look. She just…stares up at the man as her mind works through his sudden appearance.

Wait. Her mom, the drugged out whore, told him, someone who mysteriously has the same last name as her, about her. What the fuck? Slowly, her brows work up her forehead, staring up at the man with wide blue eyes.

Then, tray in hand, she makes her way over to the table. The tray is set down on the table, and her bags in one of the empty chairs, before she settles down in her own chair, leaning back. Her coat comes to rest in her lap, and she quietly sips at her soda while she waits for Graeme to join her.

Graeme sets his own bags down, pulls his cell phone out to set it on the table, takes a chair and turns it around to sit, leaning on the back of it and facing the table. "I didn't mean to startle you," he says, observing the woman across the table, and pulling one of his two orders of fries to eat a few.

Keira lifts the chicken sandwich in her left hand, taking a rather large bite of it and chewing rather deliberately as she tucks her right hand into her lap. Blue eyes watch the phone, then the man as he sits down. Her expression remains unreadable as she chews. Another bite of the sandwich is taken, the tattooed woman raising her brows at Graeme. And then…

There's no mistaking the cold sound of metal clicking against metal. That's the hammer of a gun being drawn back, concealed in Keira's nice wool coat beneath the table they sit at.

Keira is slow, deliberate about chewing her sandwich, radiating calm confidence about the fact that she is the one currently in control of the situation. She draws first, after all. That's the only way to survive. After she swallows the mouthful, she slowly washes it down with her soda, making a soft sound of satisfaction from the meal.

"So, Graeme. Who the fuck are you, and how the fuck do you know my whore mother? What, is her pussy too old, so now she's tryin' t'send her business to me? Or are you her pimp, lookin' for money? Or maybe she owes you money for her fuckin' drugs, and so she sent you the way of her lovely daughter to take care of her debts." The woman speaks in a slow, calm tone, brows raising higher on her forehead. Seems she's used to this kind of thing, with the calm demeanor she's acting in.

"You're shit out of luck. I ain't payin' none of that whore's debts."

"Technically, she's my mother too," Graeme responds. The tone is still dispassionate, still as if he has removed himself a bit from the situation. The gun doesn't particularly seem to phase him much, besides an eyebrow being raised in question. "Not that she ever did anything for me. Left me to rot in one group home after another after another." In between speaking, Graeme finishes the one set of fries, starts on the sandwich.

Putting it down, he watches Keira. "Then again, I suppose that I might be the luckier, here. She's just a name on my birth certificate, after all." He pauses, raises his brows briefly in question, then picks up his sandwich again.

Keira's brows raise as Graeme speaks; the gun is still held in place, aimed at the man's gut. And for a long moment, there's nothing but awkward silence from the woman as she stares thoughtfully at the man. So wait. He's…her brother? No way. Her mom never told her about that. Then again…her mom also convinced her that her uncle was her father, and it took a paternity test to prove otherwise.

"You're fuckin' lyin'." She frowns across the table at him. "That cunt never said anything about a brother. Gimme some proof." She nods toward Graeme, lifting her sandwich and taking another bite of it, still keeping the gun leveled on him beneath the table.

"I'm not lying, actually," Graeme says, teacher voice active, leaning back in his chair to pull out a folded rectangle of paper, unfolding it, and sliding it across the table to Keira. It's a certified copy of his birth certificate, no less. Mother: Deirdra Madigan Fionn. Father: Unknown.

Blue eyes follow the piece of paper, a frown set across Keira's features. Once it's closer to her, the woman leans forward, quietly examining it with a frown on her face. A brother. She has a brother that she never even knew existed. A half brother. He shares her blood - and he actually was looking for her, judging by the birth certificate.

Finally, the cool slide of metal clicking metal sounds, and the hammer is pressed back on the gun, her hand leaving its trigger to pick up the birth certificate, examining it closer. That's official alright. Has the little imprinting thing on it, too.

"So…you're my brother." The obvious is stated, Keira frowning down at the piece of paper that proves their relation. "I have a brother."

Graeme just watches Keira, both hands on the table, leans back a bit when she picks up the birth certificate, before picking up his sandwich. Apparently, the fact that he has a sister hasn't made his metabolism any less demanding. "If it makes you feel any better, I nearly beat th' shit outta her when I met her." Her being their mother. His voice is quiet, and it's lost that quality of not quite caring that it'd had.

Keira stares at the birth certificate for a moment longer, before she slowly slides it back to its rightful owner. A brother. One she was never even told about by her scumbag mother. What the hell is she supposed to say to him? She looks back up to him, looking him over in a much less paranoid way than she was before. While her posture is still tense, she's not as ready to jump across the table and pistol whip him as she was before this revelation.

"You should've done it. She didn't deserve your compassion." Finally, her eyes turn back up toward Graeme's face, brows raising slightly. "…I don't know what to say. I mean…she never even told me about a brother…shouldn't be surprised though. I'm surprised she even remembered who I was. Fuckin' bitch." Apparently, Keira Fionn does not like her mother.

For the moment, Graeme leaves the birth certificate on the table. It's not like it's his only copy of the thing or anything, and the look he offers his newfound half-sister is kind, more or less. "That makes two of us," he says, shaking his head slightly as he puts down the small fragment of a sandwich he'd been still holding.

He glances across at her. "I guess, that makes you my sister." He seems to have a penchant for stating the obvious, as well, and finally, he raises his hands in a slightly helpless shrug. "Really, I…" he bites his lip, one hand clenching into a fist, though he does a good job at containing what anger there is from showing much. "She didn't even deserve as much attention from me as I put in the few blows we did exchange."

"Bitch deserves everything bad in the world." Keira sneers down at her sandwich, before picking it up and taking a large bite, chewing on the sandwich just as she chews on the idea of a family member she never knew she had.

The fact that they both loathe Deirdra has been established as common ground. But really, how much do they have in common? He certainly looks trim. Nice, even. Quite the contrast to the tattoo sleeve that covers her right arm, and the edges of another few tattoos barely peeking out from beneath the rolled up shirt sleeve, the nose piercing, and the ear plugs.

Appraisal finished, Keira turns her eyes back up toward Graeme. "So, uh…tell me about you?" She raises her brows, a bit at a loss about this situation. "Like…why'd I never hear about you?"

Blue eyes meet Keira's, and Graeme seems thoughtful, if quiet for a long moment.

"Like I said," Graeme says, "all I had most of my life was a name on a birth certificate. She left me at the hospital. Ward of the state. Group homes. Foster homes. Couple more group homes." He'll get around to his adoptive parents later. "Every boy there knew that I was the product of some druggie who'd left me because she just didn't give a shit." He grimaces, shrugs, looks at her as if it's now her turn to talk.

It's Keira's turn to grimace, shifting uncomfortably in her seat. "You should feel fortunate that she had the compassion to leave you." Her voice is quiet as she speaks, and then she's lifting her soda to slurp some down. "I had my…our grandpa up until I was three. He was good t'me, even if I only remember little tiny flashes of him."

The woman frowns, growing quiet for a long moment. "He died in '86." She shakes her head. "Ha, she left you in the waiting room. You're the lucky one. On good days, she'd act like I didn't exist. Left me alone in my room. Or she'd shove me off on Aunt Flann, where I would get bullied by her kids and yelled at by her husband." She sneers. "On th'bad days when she couldn't get her meth fix, she'd fuckin' yell at me. Blame me for everything bad. Tell me how unwanted I was. Usually, she'd slap me around, though occasionally she'd just outright beat me."

The woman talks as if she has come to terms with everything she says.

An almost rueful smirk forms on Keira's face. "Sounds like we both had a shitty time of things when we were kids." She watches the man thoughtfully, her head tilted to the side as she works on the last of her sandwich. Despite her slender form, she at least seems to have a healthy appetite.

"Public school was hell. It was either eat or be eaten, there." She looks thoughtful. "Either you were a bully, or you were a victim. I could only stand bein' a victim for so long, y'know?" Judging by her general attitude and demeanor, she was the bully in the school-age relationships that she had with her peers.

"I thought I'd found my dad, and my siblings." Keira pauses, frowning. "But mom was a lyin' bitch. She convinced me that m'uncle was m'dad. I don't think you're related to them…probably for th'best. They don't seem t'like newcomers." She's okay with her uncle, but she's only met one of her cousins thus far. Who knows, maybe she'll get along better with her other cousin.

She fidgets. "So…how old are you? When's your birthday? What d'you like to do?" As she asks this question, she tries to figure out some normal-sounding things that she likes that doesn't involve confessing that she likes making money, selling drugs, beating people (usually for money), demolitions, double crossings, and, OH YEAH, she's somehow found herself a part of Humanis First. She's going to omit that part.

Graeme nods, listening to Keira. He's a good listener, or at least his facial expressions indicate the right amount of interest, the right amount of sympathy, and he picks up his soda, thoughtfully. "Thirty-one," he says, with his tone of voice indicating that it's an age that mentally resonates as 'old' and when did he get there. "March. March 17th."

He shifts, leaning on the chair once more. "Sports, running, biking, climbing. Pretty much anything in that sort of thing. Used to be, name it and if I hadn't done it already, I'd do it. I read a lot." Graeme chuckles. He's still just as much of a daredevil, he's just quieter about it, really. There's a bit of a pause. "I'm um…" another pause, awkward silence as Graeme tries to figure out how to explain his evolved status. "I've always been a bit inclined to sports," he says. "Goes with the territory of my ability."

"That makes you my big brother, I guess. I'm twenty-seven. May 24th." She offers a faint smile, mentally filing away the birthday of her newfound brother. She'll have to get him a birthday gift. She reaches out, slurping down some more of her soda, before she quietly begins to eat her waffle fries.

Oh. He's Evolved. Well shit, that just makes things even better, right? Now she's a part of Humanis First, when her stupid brother is Evolved. There's also a bit of jealousy in there. Why'd he get sent away from her horrendous cunt of a mother? Why'd he get to be an Evo and not her? He looks nice. Well groomed, fairly professional.

Her expression doesn't mirror what she's thinking, thankfully, save for a subtle raise of her brows. "Hmmm." She shoves a waffle fry into her mouth. Best way to keep herself from saying anything dumb while she's formulating words in her head. She chews rather deliberately, before swallowing. "Well, I like t'jog and work out a little." She even got an exercise set for her new apartment. "I have a dog. His name's Odin. Big black Great Dane, probably my best friend in th'world." She offers a faint smile.

The mention of the dog elicits a genuine smile from Graeme, and he watches. Attitude towards animals has always, in his experience, been a good indication of someone's true attitude. "I've never had a dog, or anything," he offers up, an attempt at conversation without it getting too awkward. Though it's already awkward, overall. "One of the group homes had some mice, but really, mice…" he shakes his head. "And the dorms I lived in didn't allow pets, then after that, I was too busy."

"Went to college in New Mexico, scholarship for soccer," he says. "New Mexico is warm." He grins, sheepishly. "Got a job right before I graduated, one of the high schools. Assistant coach for soccer, fill-in sub at times. I was one of those idealistic idiots who thought they could actually make a difference." He frowns a bit, then his hands turn palm-up in that shrug again.

"Y'should meet Odin. He's a great dog. He an' I like t'go out to Montauk, and he'll just run around the beach like he's gone crazy." Keira offers a fond smile. Keep the topic on the dog. Don't even ask about his ability. "I've had 'im since he was a puppy. Found him sittin' in a kennel that hadn't been cleaned, and he obviously hadn't been let out. So I took 'im and gave 'im a good home." She also trained him to be a guard dog, and the giant dog knows how to attack on command if the need arises. She doesn't mention that part.

"I never went to college. I got my GED." She did manage to score rather high on that, and probably could go to college. But why waste time on college? She's doing just fine as she is now. "Grew up in Buffalo. Moved down here after th'bombs. Had to get away from Mother Dearest." The title is said with more than a little acidity to her tone.

She doesn't mention that she got her GED because she joined a street gang. How she is a fully recognized member of the Bloods.

"Most of the homes I was placed in were outside Buffalo, a bit," Graeme says. "Then when I was nine…eleven…don't quite remember, they placed me with a family down here, Manhattan actually. No group home would have me, at that point." Because he had a reputation for getting in a shitload of trouble, and for not conforming to the pecking order, but that goes unsaid. And he's omitting details, overall, a little.

"But I left for New Mexico back in 2000, and yeah." Graeme observes Keira, a faint smile on his face, and if there are some critical thoughts running through his head, they don't show in the slightest. But it's not quite a poker face, either; he seems to genuinely like hearing her talk about her dog. "Only been back for a few weeks, now. Might as well stay here, though." He purses his lips. "New Mexico hasn't been the best place for folk like me, recently. Bunch of bigoted…" he pauses, and when he continues, there's a little less vitriol in his voice. "Lot of folk as don't like folk like me, and it was getting a little less safe than I'd like. Threats, and such. Lost the job I'd had, because one of the district people decided they sympathised with …" He trails off, shakes his head.

"I'd love to meet Odin some time." Graeme's turn to bring the conversation back to the dog.

Keira shifts a bit in her seat, her fingers clasping at the coat in her lap. She's not grabbing at the gun, she's just…using it as something to hold on to. He got a family? Looks like he did good for himself. Had a relatively good life for himself. Except for that Evolved status thing. She doesn't need to hear the words that he cuts off to know what he's talking about. What group he's talking about. The group that she just so happens to be a part of.

Suddenly, Keira feels like she's in way over her head.

She's shoving her arms into the sleeves of her coat, then, drawing it around herself and buttoning it up. Then, a pen and a receipt are withdrawn from her purse, and her name and phone number are rather hastily written on the slip of paper. This is pushed across the table in front of Graeme, even as she's raising to her feet. "I gotta go. I got shit I gotta do."

Like cry and scream at the walls, and hug her dog.

Or maybe go shoot someone.

She's purposely not looking him in the eye, gathering her bags. She was still going to do some more shopping, but that can wait for another day. "Call me some time. We— we can go to the park with Odin, or something."

Then, she's turning to leave as quickly as she can. She needs to get out of here. Needs to breathe, needs to think.

Are her eyes glistening a little bit more than normal?

"Yeah. Uh, seeya." There's a card shoved across the table to her, before she leaves. It's got a name, phone number, email, New Mexico street address, logo of some school district somewhere. He takes the receipt carefully, and sits on the edge of his seat. He could go after her, sure, but that's not necessarily what's best for her, and he recognises it. Instead, he busies himself cleaning the table, watching Keira walk off.

Chewing slightly on his lower lip, he draws out his cell phone, enters her number as a new contact, and then scrolls through the existing list of contacts, before quietly tapping out a text.

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