Q's And Booze


eliot_icon.gif nalani_icon.gif veronica_icon.gif

Scene Title Q's And booze
Synopsis Veronica is taking Nalani out for a walk that just happens to be one that will utilize her ability. Eliot of course, is just slumming it for the day.
Date April 10, 2009


Even Brooklyn has Starbucks, that universal meeting place. And so it is that Veronica is sitting outside, sipping her Venti Soy chai latte. One boot heel rests on the edge of her seat, and her arm is draped lazily over the peaked knee as she watches the busy street through a pair of sunglasses, though it's cloudy enough not to need them. She's dressed casually today to fit in with the less-sophisticated Brooklynites — long dark jeans, black boots, a black t-shirt and a short black pea-coat — it might be spring, but she's still getting used to chilly weather, and 56 degrees is cold for her. A closer look at all of the clothes, for someone like Nalani who would know, will reveal all of the clothes are designer quality. To the uninformed eye, she just looks … casual. She lifts the white paper cup to her lips and sips the spicy milk and tea concoction as she waits for her "appointment" to show.

She'll get some sort of poverty stricken venereal disease just by coming here. She's that sure as her escalade pulls up. Do you know how hard it is to not show up somewhere without her assistant, or any assistant for that matter and escape a photographer or two? Very hard. A massive strain. We're talking she really will need to attend that exclusive spa that she's supposedly checked into. Only it's not her who did, it's Stephanie who did. Stephanie who is getting that kelp body wrap, with the facial and god only knows how much else.

And Nalani is in Brooklyn.

Really. Is this worth those pills? Must be because the exotic woman is striding around the vehicle to head in and get some caffeine. Like Veronica she's in designer casual, just barely. Not even a glance to Veronica from behind the only concession to her normal life - big big sunglasses. She in there two minutes before she's back out, looking left, then right, with a starbucks employee in tow behind her carrying her drink and a bagel smothered five inches deep in cream cheese. "Over there please" an indication to Veronica's seat. Someones not pleased.

Veronica may have come from affluence — she is the daughter of a man who was one of the most successful neurosurgeons in the country — but she's very independent. The fact Nalani doesn't carry her own bagel and coffee gets a quiet snort from Veronica. She watches the woman approaching her table and gives a nod, and lifts her chai in a little salute. "Morning," she says pleasantly enough. "Sorry to drag you out here for this… wasn't my idea, you know," she says, in what she hopes is an apologetic tone. Whether she's apologetic or not in reality is another story, of course.

See, she could carry it. But as with just about everything involving Nalani, it's all about appearances. It's an act, a complete show including a dog and pony act. The starbucks employee is slipped a ten and sent away with a "you can go back" as she picks up her coffee. 'It's the price I have to pay to get what I want" The glasses are pushed up, skewing glossy black hair to the sides in a very Farrah Fawcett type feathering to regard veronica. "So what do I call you? I'm Ms Hollingwood" that's Mizzz, not Miss. lets not forget that mmkhay? The bagel is picked apart with a knife, cut into little sections, a gross assumption that they're going to be here for a bit.

"Veronica will do," says Vee, a nod toward the other woman. She raises her brows behind those sunglasses as she watches the other woman cut up the bagel. The little "patio" on which they sit is empty but for themselves. "You're okay with going door to door and talking with people? What if they recognize you?" she asks, looking a little doubtful that the woman would be okay with that. I mean, after all, she'd be seen slumming in Brooklyn. "Or can you persuade them to forget who you are?" she asks, unsure of the limits of the other woman's abiity.

"I'll make them forget" She'll also be wearing her glasses and not priceless couture. "You just tell me who to talk to and what you want asked and I'll make them answer. I can make them do mostly anything" As if the woman had to doubt that. "Smile Veronica" That press of will that's silent traveling with the words. Give the agent a demonstration. "put your drink down and smile at me like you mean it" Like it's he most natural thing in the world to do. Who wouldn't smile at Nalani and mean it. It's Nalani.

Veronica's hand goes to the table, and her full lips part, then curve into her charming smile, all Colgate-white teeth and dimples. Her eyes narrow, however, behind her glasses. "Thanks for the demonstration. Now don't ever do that to me again, and we will both be happy," she says through those grinning teeth, her voice low so the threat doesn't carry to the passersby on the sidewalk beyond their little patio. "As far as who, I guess we just start asking around. I figured the pool hall down the street might be a good spot to start… bartenders notice things." She gives a shrug of one shoulder, relaxing back into her seat.

"If I backfire, you'll know" Cause it's usually a spectacular look on a person's face. Ugh, bars. There's a really disgusted look on the woman's face. "Fine. Long as I don't catch something awful from being here. Last time I was here there were criminals taking guns out of the trunks of their car in broad daylight" the bagel is quickly disappearing, eaten bit by bit. "far as I know you just need me to ask questions. Am I allowed to be filled in further or is it strictly a need to know basis?" Napkin is snatched up to meticulously make sure there's no cream cheese snuck in under her french nails.

"We're just looking for some Evolved that somehow hopped onto the radar," Veronica says causally. "So basically… we're looking for newcomers, or new stories of Evolved happenings, that kind of thing. Trying to figure out who these people are and what they can do, just so we can keep an eye on them." Because that's all the Company does, right? Watch over people. She nods toward the tray. "All through? Ready to roll? I'll give you some penicillin when we're through, and I'm sure you'll be fine."

"Har har. Bloody well funny" Grouses the glamazon as she finishes off the last bite. Wipe her hands again and she's up, coffee grabbed, and digging into a purse that barely fits the casual image, she hits the button on her keys, setting the escalade to security turned on. Not that she's expecting it to deter anyone. "Lead on secret agent man" Spoken low enough for just the two of them. "What I do for these pills" An aggrieved sigh, as if she's bearing the weight of the world on her shoulders.

Veronica tosses her empty cup into the trash can on the way out of the Starbucks patio area and onto the sidewalk, heading down the street. No doubt they get a couple of looks - despite the casual wear, they certainly are not locals, though Vee walks with a casual ease that suggests she could fit in here, if she needed to. "Here," she says with a nod toward a bar called "Q's and Booze" according to the pink neon sign, an animated beer pitcher filling a glass over and over again, while an 8 ball flashes its lighted "8" on and off. "Charming name, isn't it?" she says with a chuckle, holding the door open for Nalani.

Q's abd booze. delightful. Thank God that Veronica is opening the door for her instead of having to touch it herself. "I'll have to include it in the next issue. Send everyone who's anyone down to Q's and booze" A distinct roll of her eyes from behind the now down glasses as she steps through, halting inside enough that Veronica can get past her so that she can give the innards of the place a critical eye. "It's no 21"

Veronica pushes her own glasses up onto the top of her head, and glances about the place. Only the seedy regulars hang out at a haunt at this afternoon hour, and that's exactly who she wants to talk to. Evening crowds, you get a few that are out of towners or just those who hop from bar to bar. Not the regulars. She nods to the actual bar first. "Bartender looks bored. He'll be happy to talk to a pretty girl like you," Vee says playfully. Actually, the 'tender is kinda hot in a rugged "Brooklyn" sort of way. Vee heads over, lifting one leg up to rest on a bar stool while she leans her elbows on top of the counter the man is in the midst of rubbing down — right where he's about to rub next. "Hey there. We were wondering if we could ask you a few questions," she says, a warm and flirtatious smile hoping to persuade the man in her own right.

Oh god. was that a cockroach?

Ewwwwww - wait, no. Peanut shell. Nalani's easing away from touching anything everything, despite the fact that the bartender is so obviously washing down stuff in preparation for the evening. Coming to stand behind Veronica, look friendly Nalani, smile, be nice. you want to be here. "Just a few question need answering, that's all" Oh god that feels so good. Letting the will travel outwards. She missed that. She didn't think she'd miss that. "Cause I think you want to answer some questions for us" Nalani drops her voice down to a purr, lowers her eyelids just a fraction, summoning up the sex kitten from all her modeling gigs where she had to wear lingerie. "Whats your name handsome?"

The man, who gave the two women a skeptical look when they approached the bar — sure, he's hot, but not that hot! — gives a grin at first Vee, then Nalani as she assauges all his doubts away. "Hello ladies. I'm Bruce," he says in a typical Brooklyn accent. "Sure, I can help you. Whatcha need?" he asks pleasantly enough.

Veronica gives Nalani a sidelong smile, then turns her brown eyes back on Bruce. "We want to know if anything interesting has been going on… if anyone interesting has come into town, or if you've heard of any strange happenings. That sort of thing," she says, leaving it vague so that he can tell what he thinks is important.

Eliot has arrived.

'I'd really enjoy it if you'd answer her questions… Bruce" Nalani's forefinger and middle finger march across the bar top towards Bruce's hand and gives a wink. The brunette's ability on full force now.

Bruce swallows a bit and smiles even more, getting a couple of chuckles and hoots from the far end of the bar, where some of the regulars sit drinking foamy mugs of beer. "Well, let's see. There was a guy in here the other night I never seen before," Bruce begins. "He was hustling some guys playing pool. I kinda thought he mighta been cheating somehow, using one of those Evolved sorts of powers… getting ridiculous shots and he kept laughing, saying it was all beginner's luck. All this after blowing the first two games, and then going all or nothin'."

Veronica tilts her head curiously. "What kind of shots?" she asks, sitting a little straighter, less provocatively, since clearly Nalani's got it all covered in that department.

Eliot is known around her. He grew up in Brooklyn, and despite being rich and successful now, he comes back here every now and then to say hi to some old friends. Including Bruce, the bartender, whom he used to play football with! He does dress down for the occasion, though: faded jeans, beat-up sneakers, and a t-shirt that says: 'sorry about what happens later.' Take that as you will. As soon as he's through the door of the dive, some people call out his name and wave; he returns the greetings.

Bruce is still under the brunette's weighted instructions, to answer Veronica's questions. Nalani just has to keep smiling at him and making pretty and not imagine what sorts of disgusting germs are getting on her hands. "Ohh, that sounds like a special man indeed" Murmured as she goes to look around and then freeze. Shit. look away! Look back towards the bar and away from the door and the man that just came through. Shit. Of all gin joints.

Veronica frowns at the name — normally a name wouldn't get her to look, but it's an unusual name and one she's recently become acquainted with. "Great," she mutters, but Bruce smiles at her like that was meant sincerely, and for him. After all, he's being such a good boy and answering Nalani's questions.

"Impossible shots. I've played my whole life, and won tournaments and shit, and I couldn't make those shots. Things that defy physics and geometry," he says with a shake of his head. "Like hitting the 8 ball with the cue ball into the 7 ball, but somehow the 8 skipping away at the last second while the 7 ball drops in the pocket. Impossible."

Veronica nods. "What's he look like? Did you know where he went to when he left?"

Eliot fist-bumps with one of the boys and pauses at the entrance to chat with'em. Everyone likes Eliot. Everyone has always liked Eliot. If asked, everyone will say Eliot is a swell guy; even if he did sleep with their girlfriend that one time. Eliot pauses when he looks at the bar. Who's that talking to his buddy Bruce? He could swear he recognizes both those backsides from somewhere…

This is not the ass you are looking for. Look away young padawan. look away. Thank you for glasses being down and not dressed outrageously. Maybe he won't notice her in this dive. "Veronica. we need to go. now." Please, pretty please, with a cherry on top and all that other goodness Nalani says.

"Just a second," Veronica says, to Nalani, as she waits for Bruce to answer the last question. He looks perhaps a trifle distracted for a moment, but then gives a description that won't help anyone much: "Just an ordinary guy… brown hair, brown eyes, maybe green, around six feet, maybe a little less. Nah, I was working. He left, and I haven't heard anything else, except the guys he hustled were pissed," Bruce says with a shrug.

Veronica sighs and turns to Nalani. "All right, Princess," she says, glancing back at Bruce. "Thank you so much for your time. I appreciate it. Really." She leaves a bill on the bar top in thanks for the information, and slips off the bar stool.

It's the voice that confirms it. That, and the fact that she called her 'Veronica'; because that posture on the stool is also a dead give-away. Eliot is a certified psychologist and sociologist; he studies people like they're textbooks and can memorize patterns of emotional, psychological, and physical behaviour like one would a passage of a book. His smile grows wide. "And what, deny me the pleasure of a drink with two of my faaaaay-voh-riht ladies?" He steps up behind them, hands in his pocket, smirk like the Devil's.

After a moment of admiring the ladies, he chin-tips at Bruce. "'Sup, Bruce."

"Bloody hell" Shit. A really big River of … wait a second. my two favorite ladies. "I'm not drinking in this place Eliot" Not if you gave her a million dollars and fifty Hermes purses with matching scarves. "Not that I'm sure Bruce doesn't run a delightful place. Veronica, we should be going. I have that appointment" She needs to fight hard not to make that a demand. Nalani doesn't want to be here and doesn't want to see Eliot, or more appropriately, Eliot see her here. Though once he's closer, that's starting to fade as it is.

"Hey, Eliot," Vee says, shooting Nalani a look. Why else are they there, if not to enjoy the ambience and the pleasure of being in a tavern with other like minded people? Well, that's what she'd convey, if she could convey such things with a look — after all, the kind of job she lied about having to Eliot has nothing to do with bars in Brooklyn. "Another time, maybe? She has an appointment." She doesn't look too worried about his finding her here — it's more odd that she's with someone like Nalani, probably. "What brings you to this side of town?"

"Why not?!" Eliot tips his head a bit and smiles at Nalani. "Bruce has the best drinks in the neighborhood. And I'm sure anyone waiting for Nalani will be more than willing to wait for a little while longer." He does find all these things peculiar; but that doesn't mean it's gonna stop him. No sir. "I come here every now and then. Used to be a hangout when I lived in this part of town. I've known Bruce and Jerry and Don over there since I was a rugrat."

"I'm sure Bruce has the best drinks in this neighborhood" But Eliot's winning the woman over. "One. Just ONE" A glance to Bruce as she lifts her glasses. "make it your cleanest glass and something hard" She can do this. She'll definitely go detox at the spa with Stephanie ofter. scrub herself till every last surface skin cell is gone. God. Brooklyn. She'll let Veronica explain, if they're asked, why they're here. She's the professional lier.

Veronica shrugs and slips back onto the bar stool. "Small world. I only know like five people aside from those I work with, and two of you know each other," she says with a little head shake of disbelief. She sighs and glances back at Bruce. "God, it's too early for real drinking, isn't it? Can I have a cider, Strongbow if you have it on tap."

Eliot slips in between the two women and sits down, glancing from one to the other with a raised brow. "So how do you two know each other, ladies? Not that I'm complaining that two beautiful girls would end up at one of my non-work hangouts, together, and have a drink with me. But curiosity peaks, lovelies."

It's never to early to drink. No, not at all. "you don't want to know how we know each other Eliot. Why don't you pay for Veronica's drink instead?" She flashes a big fake smile at him as she waits for her own drink. Though she does get back up onto the appointed stool, leaning gingerly against the counter. "Veronica, you should tell him how we know each other" It'll be interesting, she's sure.

Veronica gives a befuddled look to Nalani. She's telling him he doesn't want to know, but telling her to tell him? She gives a shrug. The best lies are grounded in reality. "I work with a guy who used to work for her. We all hung out a couple of times, and I needed some girl time, so I called Nalani and had her meet me out here for lunch." Why would anyone go to Brooklyn for lunch? Who knows. She smiles brightly though and hopes the lie passes muster. She picks up the cider that Bruce slides over the counter to her, and takes a sip.

Eliot's face tightens for a moment, almost as if he's fighting Nalani's attempts to enforce her persuasive powers on him. But he capitulates, eventually. Veronica's lie is full of holes, but Nalani's forcing disinterest in him and the lie both work together towards having Eliot accept it. For now. He will question it all later, and that'll lead to some exciting conclusions. Either way, it's fine for now. "Bourbon, Bruce, my usual. Tab's on me." He makes a circular motion, indicating everyone's tab.

It almost doesn't work. Which means Nalani didn't put enough will behind it. It's mentally noted as she unconsciously shifts a little more towards Eliot, wanting to be just that much closer to him. "Slumming it Eliot? Where did you come from around here?" Drinks are being slid out one by one onto the counter and one manicured hand closes around the glass.

The shorter of the two women curls one foot under herself on the bar stool, bringing herself up a couple more inches - the stools aren't short, but they're meant for average men, rather than average women, and she feels a little short compared to the lithe long limbs of Nalani on the other side of Eliot, both taller than she. "Apparently Nalani's afraid of catching a disease here in Brooklyn," Vee says with amusement. She sips her cider, as she waits for his response to Nalani's question.

"I grew up here," Eliot tells Nalani with a smile. "In the orphanage just a few blocks down." Eliot's an orphan? Yipes. "When I got old enough I stopped doing courier work for Bruce's dad and started actually drinking here." He glances at Vee and then smirks in Nalani's direction. "You won't catch anything here, Nally, other than some very interesting glances from some not-so-polite gentlemen."

"Says you. If I die of flesh eating disease from drinking out of this cup, I'm blaming you" Nalani murmurs. Orphan. There's a sympathy wince. Yup. She's part of that club. Only she had a brother. And she got adopted. "We've already got the glances, haven't we veronica?" Nalani smiles the company agents way.

Veronica smiles. "You got the glances, dear, not me," the smaller of the two brunettes says, giving all the praise to the woman who, no doubts, expects it. "Brucey there was damn straight enamored with you," she says with a nod toward the bartender. She glances at Eliot, her brown eyes more somber and frowns a little. "Sorry about the orphanage thing," she says quietly. That much is sincere, for those who can read emotions well.

"Why? My parents clearly didn't want me. At least I didn't die in the street all starved." Eliot shrugs and shakes his head. "I'm fine. I got over it a long, long time ago." He spins around, back against the counter so he can look at them both, more or less. "So when can I expect the two of you back at the club, then?"

Oh wait, he's expecting Nalani to go with veronica? The amazon looks over at Veronica, brows rising. In what world do their social circles interact. Wait, obviously this one. "Maybe soon. Do you have incentive? And if you say another article for the magazine, your dead wrong"

The company agent laughs a bit. She can't see the two of them clubbing any time soon. Does Nalani club? "Incentive?" she asks curiously, turning instead to Nalani, then glancing down at a Blackberry she's pulled out her pocket. "I need to go once I finish my drink, by the way," she tells them, lest they think she's rude for running off in a moment or two.

"Naw, not another article." Eliot smiles at them both, his grin easy and bright, and friendly. "I need to offer you incentive?" He looks disappointed in Nalani's skepticism. "I would've thought you'd both had fun at Rapture and would be willing to come back."

"I'm teasing Eliot" Lean a little closer and smile. "I'll show again, don't worry. Or do you miss me that much already?" Browne yes flicker to Veronica. "Your appointment or our appointment?" Because she actually doesn't really want to go now that she's parked beside Eliot.

Vee raises her brows as she sees Nalani actually get nice to someone… that she is not extracting information from. And it seems genuine. "Mine," the agent says with a bit of a smirk. "I'll tell them to cancel yours while I'm there, how's that…" she offers, sliding off the stool and leaving a bill despite Eliot's offer to pay. "It was nice seeing you both." She gives a nod toward the bartender as well.

Eliot smiles at Nalani and then raises a brow at Veronica, tipping his chin at her. "What? No hug goodbye?" Now he's just pushing it; but there's just that charming smile he follows up with, nice and easy. Laid back. His one hand drops to run his fingers over the back of Nalani's hand.

"Next time Veronica. I look forward to seeing you again" Still more genuine niceness, the company agents getting the bleed off from Eliot's aura. "call me" Shit. Ooops. "later, Veronica" Lounging at the bar like it was rapture or like she owned it. Bruce all but ignored. Eliot's hand on hers not brushed off, not even bitched about, just let to casually run.

Veronica blinks at Nalani and gives a little shake of her head. Her eyes flicker over to Eliot's and she gives him a look that's curious and interested but in something other than his charming smile and nonchalant attitude. She shrugs and gives him a hug, before heading out before Nalani gets any more friendly.

Veronica has left.

Eliot watches Veronica walk out — really watches her — and then turns to Nalani with a wry smile, raising a brow. "Fancy meeting you here, gorgeous." He turns slowly in his stool to face her.

"I don't hang out in Brooklyn normally. I tend to reserve that for flat tires and that was once, and it was in front of exxxotica" Disgust. "Orphan? What are those odds" Her own glass is lifted to her lips, a glance for the retreating woman and then back to Eliot. "You scared her off"

"I doubt it," Eliot says as to scaring Veronica away. "Her business must be pressing indeed." He tips his head over at Nalani and raises a brow. "What about orphans?"

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