Samsons And Delilah


delilah_icon.gif samson_icon.gif

Scene Title Samsons and Delilah
Synopsis Russian roulette is not the same without a gun.
Date May 9, 2010

Greenwich Village

In a time that seems long ago, Greenwich Village was known for its bohemian vibe and culture, the supposed origin of the Beat movement, filled with apartment buildings, corner stores, pathways and even trees. There was a mix of upper class and lower, commercialism meeting a rich culture, and practically speaking, it was largely residential.

Now, it's a pale imitation of what it used to be. There is a sense of territory and foreboding, as if the streets aren't entirely safe to walk. It isn't taken care of, trash from past times and present littering the streets, cars that had been caught in the explosion lie like broken shells on the streets nearest the ground zero. Similarly, the buildings that took the brunt of the explosion are left in varying degrees of disarray. Some are entirely unusable, some have missing walls and partial roofs, and all of the abandoned complexes have been looted, home to squatters and poorer refugees.

As one walks through the Village, the damage becomes less and less obvious. There are stores and bars in service, and apartment buildings legitimately owned and run by landlords. People walk the streets a little freer, but like many places in this scarred city… anything can happen. Some of the damage done to buildings aren't all caused by the explosion from the past - bullet holes and bomb debris can be seen in some surfaces, and there is the distinct impression that Greenwich Village runs itself… whether people like it that way or not.

The easiest time of day to move around, compared to all hours, is the middle of the afternoon. There is natural light, and the temperature is just that few degrees warmer. Just enough to make it less dangerous if you're prepared. Not that it isn't as it stands; Delilah, if she could help it, would not have been taking her dog out to find a bathroom spot. Sure, he can go, but does it have to be outside? No doubt she is worried about her health if she stays out too long, and at this point Samson is her only real family, and his happiness is paramount. Even if it means bundling everyone up in thick arctic gear and snowboots.

Big dog boots look silly, but they do the job! As for a coat, he can fit into hers. Or someone else's. There's a smell of aftershave or cologne or something on it- so it at least belonged to some man in their life before the dog got it.

Right now, however, Delilah has no dog. No dog, no dog boots, no smelly coat. She is bundled up stiffly and heavily, all alone, milling out in the snow covered wonderland somewhere near the apartment building. At least, that's where she thinks she is. She isn't sure, technically. The scarf around her face is already matted cold and wet on her cheeks, tears of frustration stinging half frozen around her eyes under wraparound sunglasses. Color is devoid, save for that same scarf of rainbow yarn.

Whatever Samson wanted to investigate out in the whiteness, he has not come back.

"Samson! Come back! Please…" Lilah knows that she can't yell over the wind, and so for now she also waits, stewing and whimpering inside of her clothed shell.

A black cat has no business out in the cold, but that's exactly what crosses Delilah Trafford's path. Snow dusted and lithe, looking no worse for wear and likely slipping from one shelter to another, the shaggy furred and snow-dappled feline stares up at the redhead with yellow eyes as it leaps from one point in the snow to another like a fox playing. Ears fold back, and when it hops again it turns to look over one shoulder, then continues down the long cliff-like side of a snowbank into a parking lot, running under cars and disappearing from sight.

The cold wind picks up, blowing driving snow hard enough to fill in the cat's troughs through the white dunes almost immediately after it's gone. The wind is so cold, cold enough to steal breath away, cut through the body like a knife and steal heat like some sort of arctic version of a vampire would steal blood.

The jingling sound of tags from a collar are a strange accompaniment to the howl of the wind and the creak of a billboard straining against the wind seven stories up. He's nearby, but the noise of his tags jingling is swallowed by the wind and the protesting groan of the wind pressing against things never meant to suffer the strain of this weather.

Sometimes Delilah has good ideas. Sometimes bad. This is not one of her more brain intensive moments. Gathering her thick layers around her, the tall girl steps shakingly after the faintest sound that she recognizes right away, despite its distance or masked noise. Her canine's presence is one that she knows the sensory parts of. Several gloves give her hands little movement besides that of a crab, but Delilah finds the grip on the stuff around her head long enough to pull it tighter and let out a muffled yell again.

"Samson! Come! Samson! I'm not leaving without you, god-fucking-damnit you motherfucker-" Words progress into a Yosemite Sam style stream of coughing noises behind the thick face coverings. They turn quickly into a loud keening cry, Delilah's anger having swung down into heartbroken frustration again. She cannot help but start leaking precious warmth out through her heavy breathing and tear-laden eyelids. It is as if they are freezing on her corneas.

The jingling comes louder now, behind Delilah, maybe that's where it had been all along. With the snow so thick and so deep it's hard to imagine Samson anywhere but on the bottom of it all, but there he is, weight evenly distributed despite preposterous boots, trudging thorugh the snow like some St.Bernard coming with a cask of rum for a strander skiier. He might as well have come out of thin air for all of the lacking placement for any kind of hiding. But he's not alone, and judging from the taut leash trailing behind him it's the kindness of strangers Delilah has to thank for his return.

Kindly strange old men to be specific. He's tall, thin, wrinkled like laundry that's been on the floor too long and a little saggy like an uncooked Thanksgiving turkey. The winter coat he wears is long and dark, woolen and crusted with ice and snow on the shoulders. A red and blue knit scarf covers his throat tightly, his glasses slouched down a reddened nose with frosted lenses, and one hand holding his gray fedora to his head.

"Miss!" His voice is hoarse, rough and sandpapery, "is this your dog?" He's smiling, a little relieved looking all things considered; toothy and yellow and she can already smell the cigarette smoke somehow.

She knows he is here somewhere- but behind her she was not expecting.

Once she realizes the other direction it is coming from, her disorientation rights itself and the girl swivels harshly, arms askew like she might have to be ready to catch him. There is a faint squeaking when the beast comes into view, trailing an old man who seems to at least want to do the right thing- but he is a huge dog. Of course there is a struggle. Delilah, being so passive on the subjects of outside appearances, does not so much notice that the man looks like he could use a good day and a toothbrush. What she notices is the scent of smoke and the bristle of his voice. It strikes her as familiar for the span of two seconds.

"Ahhh! Oh! Oh!" Dee shuffles as fast as she can shuffle, boots clomping away at packed snow and carrying her at an increasing speed to intercept the two of them. The dog shrinks when she gets right up to him, tail tucking- only to start wagging when Dee throws her arms around his thick neck and buries her head on his face, which immediately tries to kiss her scarf. Oh. Okay!

"Thank you, thank you, thank you-" It is obvious that she's trying to stop being so emotional all of a sudden, and that it is not working at all. What isn't obvious is that she only stands up and lets go of the dog- to wrap her arms around the spindly old man trying to tame his hat onto his head. Yeah. Her dog.

The leash is let go the moment arms come around the wiry old man's frame, and it hits the snow with a faint jingle. "I… ah…" wool gloved hands brush gently over Delilah's shoulders, and the weathered looking old man leans the young girl back and gently peels her away from him. Her dog, to credit, just stands obediantly when his leash has been released. Clearing his throat, the old man looks past Delilah to the dog, then back to her. "He has a fine name…" that toothy smile comes back, and the old man's gloved hand brushes some snow off of Delilah's shoulders.

Watching her thoughtfully, there's a look of scrutiny in his eyes, like the redhead is a puzzle without all the proper pieces. "I was wondering if he was a stray, but that fellow has quite the, ah, outfit. You must care a great deal about him…" Leaning back from Delilah, the old man looks over to the iced brick of the Village Renaissance Building, then back to Delilah.

"I was on my way back to the shelter I'm staying at when I happened to see your fine friend there chasing a very interesting feline. Unfortunately neither of us caught it, and well… we ran into each other. I have something of a way with animals," the old man notes with a belly laugh, though this close, Delilah can smell the acrid stink of cigarette smoke on him like a humador, and hear the rattling wheeze of his breath.

The world reasserts itself now that Delilah has been reunited with her pup. The building is right there, the street below, the different landmarks she has come to know peeking from behind drifts. The teenager's reaction to the man's prying her off is an apologetic look up at him, and down, when she stoops to pick up the thick leather lead. "Thanks- he- had the name already- it really does suit him." When she is about to tell the man why that is, she squints under her brow a bit.

"He is usually so good with other animals, I don't know why he would go after a cat." Well, first of all, he's a dog. Oh, Dee. She gets the heavy stink of tobacco in her nose all the same, and it gives her a rabbit-like twitch on her face. The redhead easily disguises it with a wrist that rubs at the space of her glasses, bumping them up so that he can see her looking at him. They are still red, of course, but her doe-eyed, momentary adoration fills the rest. This guy isn't the worst smelling man she has ever met, nor is his rattling set of lungs totally unfamiliar to her. If anything, Lilah feels bad because she can guess what it is that has done it.

"He's the only family I have right now. 'S funny though, that this Delilah needs him so badly." Backwards, innit? For measure, she crouches slightly to hug the dog again, holding in a happy sniffle.

"Samson and Delilah, now isn't that adorable?" There's no irony in the old man's voice, something like distant affection. Silence strikes him though, after the words come out of his mouth. He straightens just a little, crooks his head to the side birdishly and lifts one gray brow in consideration of the redhead. "You might find this to be a little coincidental, or… perhaps downright preposterous, but your dog happens to share my name." The sheepish smile that Samson delivers at the comment comes a bit reluctantly.

Peering over the frames of his glasses, the two-legged Samson considers Delilah and her dog. "How did you lose your ability?" It's a question straight out of the blue, as awkward as how long have you been a redhead or do the curtains match the carpet all things considered. But the need to figure out the puzzle outweighs the fact that Samson can't feel his nose, or that the creaking overhead is getting louder.

Delilah laughs behind her scarf, the corners of her eyes wrinkling enough to make the expression worth it to make. "No way- uh?" The girl looks startled, as probably expected. She shifts her weight, remembering the one other girl that knew what she was by just looking her over. It is less absurd when she remembers Wendy, though having Samson- human Samson- know is a little more unsettling than Wendy was. "I- I was sick. It just- didn't come back when I got better." She looks down, ashamed. The dog beside her sidles up against her legs, tail swaying as he inspects his new counterpart.

"I'm better now, but I don't know if it didn't come back because of what the flu did, or because I'm having a baby and it might be dangerous." Delilah laughs again, nervous, and shoulders shrugging as visibly as she can make them.

Samson's eyes drift up and down Delilah, that she didn't question his prescience comes without recognition, he's target focused now. Licking his lips, Samson's brows furrow, feet crunch in the snow and he comes down to kneel behind the dog of his namesake's side. A gloved hand runs over the big block head, fingers curl behind one ear. "Sick…" is whispered, almost fearfully, "how long did it take, once you got sick for… everything to stop?"

Looking up from the dog, Samson's eyes have the weary tiredness of an old man who may well be frail enough to be murdered by the H5N10 were he to become infected. From the rattle of his lungs and the wheezing of his breath, the flu would probably be the last thing he had to suffer. "How bad… how painful was it?"

"It just- fizzled. Took a week or so, and then I was out of it all the time." Delilah watches the old man, head tilted. Samson would not last too long, she can tell. The molosser stands quietly, dark eyes blinking back at the man patting idly at his head and ears. He's a good dog, you see. Whatever had excited him away from Dee earlier has passed for now, and he has reassumed his temple dog stance.

"It was quite horrible at times. I was lucky. My baby was lucky. I had several friends that almost died- and- a couple that did. You should be careful." Would he even survive a vaccine?

"Lucky, maybe…" Samson admits in a quiet tone of voice, lifting a gloved hand to cover his mouth to politely block a brief cough. "I don't believe in luck, but I guess luck doesn't require much faith, does it?" There's something grandfatherly about his smile, and something subtle about the way he ruffles the back of the mighty dog's neck before rising up to stand, creakingly. "You're here, that's what counts. Maybe… it is lucky, not that you survived, but that it took your ability." There's a hesitant smile, and Samson's eyes divert down on Delilah.

"Your child…" Samson intones, one brow raised, "his ability's fine." Those old, tired eyes lift back up to Delilah, and Samson just offers little more than a poker-face at the young redhead, his gloved hands tucking into the pockets of his heavy winter coat. "You should go inside, my dear. Your Samson is tired of the cold."

Wait, what?

Delilah stares at Samson. Taken aback is the understatement of the decade. She opens her mouth behind the scarf, only to close it. And open it again. "His what is what what?" Who-da-to-the-wha-now- She is running out of words quickly enough, and to point out the second half, Samson the Dog shifts around to tug at his lead, towards home. Yes. Tired. Stop making weird friends?

"I'll be seeing you…" Samson offers cordially, rolling his shoulders against the cold and turning away from Delilah, as if that somehow was an appropriate way to end the conversation. But as he starts to walk away, as the wind picks up and blows from one dune of snow to another, Samson disappears on the wind, blows away like so much snowflakes, but something far grayer, though not enough to be visible to her in the mix of white against frozen concrete and brick.

She can smell cigarette smoke again though.

It will cling to her all the way back inside.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License