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Also Featuring:

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Scene Title Sanguine
Synopsis A night in the Rookery shows that downward spirals aren't unique events, and that the Triads have very eccentric personalities.
Date February 9, 2009

The Happy Dagger

This building used to be a dance club a decade or more ago, and was later outfitted into a strip bar up until the bomb hit New York City and Staten Island became a refuge of the panicked people of New York City. After this neighborhood fell to ruin, the strip bar went out of business and was sold easily to a young man from Britain with similar but less legitimate intentions for the place. And so it became The Happy Dagger, a brothel that makes no claim to be otherwise, and a bright spot on a street with similar venues, lit up with lights of pink, red and orange, with a neon sign in cursive print reading its name.

Two strapping bouncers allow people through after a quick identity check, down a dark corridor wherein people seem to move in and out continually. The front room is crowded, more nightclub than brothel. There's a bar in the corner, and stages of different shapes and heights create obstacles, along with a quieter lounge area separated only by saloon style doors. Women dance aloofly or mingle with the clientele, marked as employees of the Happy Dagger by their costuming. There is a Middle Eastern bent in style, with warm colours and lights, women with Cleopatra eyes, wearing more silks than sequins, decked in Hollywood-exotic stage jewelry. The insincerity of this place is palpable. There's spiral staircase at the other end of the large area, a structure swathed in red light and eye-catching.

Upstairs is a catacomb of dark hallways and bedrooms of various sizes. It seems less like a strip club and more like the brothel it boasts to be, with more elaborate interior design. Curtains of silk and chiffon, incense making the air hazy, the walls papered with golds and reds. Women linger in the hallways to catch the strays who come up here alone and guide them to appropriate rooms.

Breaking the illusion of decadence is the occasional security camera hidden in the corner. This place is not without it's safety measures, beyond the bouncers. You may also notice that the man enjoying a drink in the corner hasn't gotten up in a while, and another prowling around outside hasn't moved from this street. The security is kept discreet and unobtrusive, but it certainly is there.

It screams of insincerity and sin. This is a place of ill-begotten fortunes and even worse clientèle.

Perhaps it is no surprise that people like Kain Zarek are found in the dark and smoky corners of the Happy Dagger. Where once the pulsing beat of the Rapture club gave this criminal what he wanted out of life, a gradual downward-spiral into further debauchery and desire.

Kain Zarek, no matter what seedy underbelly he clings to, is a man of influence and station. Even here at the Happy Dagger, far outside of Linderman's usual circle of influence, he finds himself a favored client, one of the the owner's many indirect employees. The circular and plush booth he finds company at is surrounded by people of like guilt and like criminal intent. To his right, the heir to the throne of Triad power in New York City, the infamous and ruthless Liu Ye, a slick looking young man who currently finds himself entranced by the gyrations of one of many dancers up on the warmly-lit stages. On his other side, Liu Ye's other half, the ice-princess Song Ye. The moniker is a double entendre, both for her cold and complacent attitude, and for…

"Jesus, Frosty!" Kain lurches to one side, shouldering in to Liu as he scoots away from Song, who holds one finger out towards Kain, ice rimming over her index fingertip with waves of cold washing off. "Watch where yer' pointin' that thing!" The shout draws a mildly concerned look from the immense bald man standing watch near the booth, dressed in a black suit and undershirt, collar loosened. Manny looks more like a statue than a man, and a statue that wears fashionable red-lensed glasses.

"I thought you liked them broads that gave a fight, Mista Zarek?" His comment is said out of the corner of his mouth, followed by a smirk.

"What was that, Manny?" Kain leans forward on the table, palms flat on it with his brows lowered. Manny just flashes Kain an innocent smile and goes back to scanning the crowd.

Just another day in the Underworld.


A woman dressed in not much more than one of the dancers up on the stage - a short, pleated green and black plaid skirt and a black tanktop (did she seriously go outside dressed like that?) - clearly intoxicated, squeals and approaches the wall of a man. She holds one hand up in greeting before giving her dark hair a toss to send the stray strands from her face - and leaving others in their place - in an attempt to alleviate the obfuscation of darkly lined eyes, punctuated by circles almost as dark from a lack of sleep, full, glossed lips and a lazy smile. Not quite unlike the one that's been seen sported by the devil in the booth.

"Ah haven't seen you in ages!" The last word comes out as an almost hoarse squeak. She's been hitting the bottle hard. A lot harder than a detective should be in a place like this. "Where is that son of a bitch who bosses you around, handsome?"

It is easy for someone like Kain Zarek to make his place in this manner of establishment; he is young, strapping, and what charm he possesses is always being put to good use in some way. It is significantly harder for men of other walks, on varying levels; a man lacking confidence will surely shirk away, and a man with a face worse off than the backside of a warthog will simply be ignored. However, when money comes into the mix, everything changes. With money, the ugliest, crudest, and most slovenly of men can find some unsuspecting woman.

Sometimes they even become regulars, like Bao-Wei. He is not comparable to Quasimodo by far, but his size and obviously less-than-endearing outward personality lends him that continual aura of being tolerated only for his money. At least, to the other patrons. In truth, only the women he spends time with know that he never lays a finger on them. What they do is a mystery unto itself, but regardless the acts have made him more popular than most of the other worse-off men that travel in the doors.

When the doors part this time, it is to admit that man parting a path through any patrons or girls that happen to be in the way; it is not difficult for him to do so and break free of them. His coat having been taken, the doctor is wearing a suit and hat, the latter of which he removes and hands aside to the same hostess that now makes off it this and his coat.

"«Is this the one you've told me about?»" Bao-Wei's voice, first of all, is almost like someone took a low bell and struck it in a small cavern- as he makes his slow and visible way towards the side of the circular booth on Song's side, the spoken words will certainly grab some attention. Secondly, it is somewhat obvious he is not here to ogle the fairer sex; even when a woman smelling of Jasmine flits past him, the large man is unperturbed.

Song's lips curl up into a mischievous smile as she wiggles her fingers in Kain's direction, slouching towards Bao-Wei in the lazy way a cat would slouch towards the direction of sunlight. "«This is the rich and stupid one, yes.»" Her dark eyes track from Bao-Wei to Kain, and then to where the woman in the short skirt and tanktop stands by Manny, "«That must be his woman for the night. She is his whore maybe?»" Her fingers twirl in the air, tracing little streams of cold fog between them.

It's Kaydence Lee Damaris' voice that draws Kain's attention first. It is followed by an immediate downturning of his lips as he listens to Manny. "Ah, u-um, Miss Damaris." Apparently he hasn't heard the news, though it's a bit presumptuous to be calling her Miss Parkman just yet. Or maybe she'd hyphenate, wouldn't that be a mouthful? "Mista' Zarek is uh," Manny shifts a side-long stare to where Kain sits between Liu and Song, then back to Kaydence. "He's not in a good mood tonight, uh, suddenly?"

Liu, not paying much heed to Manny's stuttering conversation, is paying far more attention to Kaydence. Her outfit, skimpy as it is, catches the young man's eye almost immediately. There's something about American women that he just can't keep his hands off of, whether they like it or not. "Watch my drink for me, Mister Zarek?" Liu asks with an inappropriate leer towards Kaydence, his words only partly thought out as he says them, rising up from the booth.

"You go have yerself a wild time, Lucy." Kain grumbles, resting his head in one hand as his eyes fall shut, suddenly looking ill as he snatches his lowball glass of bourbon up from the table, beginning to drain it as the ice-cubes rattle and clink, falling together one by one.

"When is Mistah Zarek evah in a good mood, Manny?" It's a good thing the henchmen (though the term doesn't give the man enough credit for his hidden intellect) isn't aware of her engagement. Some things should remain hush-hush. Kay leans to get a better view of the booth and waves to Kain. "Ah can see ya've got company," she muses. "Just thought Ah'd say hi. You should come dance with me later, sweetheart." Downward spirals aren't just for mobsters anymore. Cops get to enjoy them equally. "Ya look like ya could use some cheer."

When Liu gets up and makes his approach, it's as though Kaydence Lee is noticing him for the first time. Or at least actually paying attention now. "Hello there." She knows his face. And another glance at Zarek's other companion proves that the two come as a match set. The smile on her face is forced. She's staring at the MCU dart board.

"«Stupid only means well for us, doesn't it? Is he very attached to Mister Linderman?»" When Bao-Wei speaks again, it is during his wandering into the space at the end of the booth bench, inviting himself. Regardless of if Zarek knows him, he has a place there. The man sits on the outer edge of the seat, one leg on the outside in order to actually keep himself from shifting.

This brings him somewhat face-to-face across the table to Kain, Song lounging around between them with her handfuls of chilled fog. The man's mismatched eyes have trailed momentarily after Liu, but otherwise Bao-Wei does offer a palm-up to the young woman, a common gesture and greeting from him- a handshake, but obviously in the form of one more antiquated. "«Still as fetching as ever.»" Bao-Wei has his moments. They are very few.

"«Enough that he keeps that old goat from looking sideways at us,»" Song croons as she lays her hand in Bao's, and her touch is equally as cold as her attitude towards most is, icy fingers that feel as though they've been out in the winter air all night. "«Are you here to watch the fights tonight? They are so wonderfully…»" Her words trail off, eyes half-lidding at the thought, "Sanguine." It's one of the few words that has such a taste and texture to it that it doesn't translate well outside of its native tongue.

"Why hello there, Miss." Liu's English is immaculate, save for the touch of Mandarin accent that lingers with it, "Perhaps I could interest you in a drink?" He quickly scoops an empty glass up off of the table that had sat in front of Song, holding it up towards Kaydence with arched brows. It this some sort of cultural thing, offering an empty glass?

"Manny." Kain grumbles, scooting away from Song and Bao towards where Liu had been sitting, "How much longer we gotta' wait 'round here till the fights start up?" The bald bodyguard slouches towards Kain, resting an elbow on the back of the leather seating of the booth.

"'Bout an hour. You wanna' show up early so we can see the spooky Russian?" Like a kid told he's going to the circus, Manny raises both hairless brows expectantly, a smile creeping up on his lips. Kain just deadpans, shaking his head with a sigh as blue eyes track over towards Liu. "I wonder if he knows exactly who he's tryin' to get up under the skirt of?" Kain mumbles quietly to Manny, who just shakes his head and laughs. He doesn't frankly care, because it makes watching Liu find out the hard way all the more entertaining.

One thing you learn not as a cop or even as a woman growing up in a scary world, but as a recovering victim of rape, is that you never take any glass from a stranger. Kay politely refuses with a raised hand and tilts her head back, "Ah'll take a Harvey Wallbanger, since you're offerin'." She licks her lips once in a manner more self-conscious than seductive. This is not what she had in mind when she intended to come scope out what's become of the rock.

"«That was my intent.»" After the smallest of squeezes to Song's delicate hand, Bao-Wei relocates his palm to his knee, eyes roaming to the tall man with Kain. Security, of course. A hand lifts to adjust the sliver of glasses on the bridge of his own nose. Bao-Wei's English has that same, light layer of an accent as Liu. "I see you're getting rather impatient, Mister Zarek. Are you so deprived of entertainment that you're itching inside just for this?" You got ants in your pants, boy? Are you afraid this isn't going to go well? The doctor is likely mostly a stranger to Kain, but eyes the Cajun as if he were appraising his overall worth, or perhaps the worth of his brain. What he seems to have of one.

Kain's blue eyes look more gray these days, what with the dark circles hanging beneath them, "What's it to you Fu-Man Chu." It even rhymed, somewhere deep down inside, Kain is remarkably pleased with himself. Song casts an askance glance to Kain at his biting remark to Bao-Wei, and she raises one small hand to come to rest on his shoulder, all too cold judging from the frost it leaves on his jacket.

"Be nice." She says quietly, eyes partway lidding as she leans in to whisper those words, a cloud of cold mist spilling forth from glossy lips as she does. Kain shivers, both from the cold and from the way that girl is. He scoots to the side of the booth, then clamors up and out, eyes scanning across the patrons of the Happy Dagger before settling back down on Bao-Wei. "Ah' just got work t'do tonight is all." Kain's eyes nervously flick up to Kaydence, then away, rubbing his hand over his mouth as he walks past her towards the bar without so much as a word. He looks even worse than he did when he showed up at her house on Christmas Eve.

"Oh, I…" Not sure what to do now when Kay pushes the empty glass aside, Liu manages to crook his lips into an awkward smile as he motions for one of the waitresses to come to the table. "I was going to show you a magic trick," He notes with a smirk, "But perhaps you would like to come take Mister Zarek's seat?" A single dark brow is raised as Liu motions to where Kain was seated. "No sense in letting his sour mood spoil the night, right?"

Manny watches the exchange with pursed lips, eying Kaydence nervously as Liu offers her a seat at the bar. His eyes track to Bao-Wei next; that's a big fucking Chinaman, Manny thinks to himself, lips puckering to one side before looking at Kain at the bar. "Sorry Miss Damaris, I'm gonna' see what's what's done gone and crawled up Mister Zarek's backside."

Manny, don't leave me! Kay wants to shout at the muscle, but she settles for grabbing his arm just tightly enough to catch his attention - to make sure he looks at her. "See that'cha do. You tell Zarek that Ah gotta talk'ta him, you hear me?" She knows Manny isn't hers to order, and so despite the fact that she's attempting to look like she's exercising some sort of authority over him through tone and body language, the look in her eyes makes plain that it's only a request. Her hold on his arm is relinquished.

Another smile, no more genuine than the first, is flashed Liu's way once more. "A magic trick, huh? Well, gawsh. Ah wasn't expectin' that. Ah would love to see this." She gestures in toward the booth. "Ah like to sit on the ends, if ya don't mind," she explains.

Bao-Wei has his eyes set on Kain and Song, only parting from the former when he literally walks out of the picture ahead. It's Manny's turn until he does the same. "«Work. Of course he does.»" The words are mumbled from the doctor only to himself. He can barely hear Liu trying his best to persuade Kay over, but doesn't dare glance over his shoulder at them. Instead, he decides that if Song is deprived of company too long, that is probably not the best idea.

For the sake of everyone, he speaks to her again. "«I wonder if he and his help share the same brain.»"

"Y-Yeah, sure thing Miss Damaris." Manny looks mildly uncomfortable, if not somewhat piteous as he sees Kay up close. His lips downturn into a frown, and he leans away from her, moving over towards the bar to stand at Kain's side quietly. After a moment, it looks like the two are talking, but from the booth what it is can't be made out.

Liu watches as Kaydence slips by, inclining his head to her as he takes the offered spot instead, leaving Kaydence on the end. Song casts her brother a side-long stare when he sits at her side, then simply turns her back to him and leans against Liu as if he were a part of the furniture, kicking her boots up in Bao-Wei's lap. "«Maybe they are different ends of the horse?»" She opines, pursing her lips together as she watches Kain and Manny distantly, "«I can tell which one is the ass.»" She adds after the fact, letting her eyes drift from two disinteresting people to Bao-Wei. "«You should introduce yourself to a man here, his name is Truman. He is responsible for the lovely displays of blood, sweat and viscera,»" One small hand reaches up to touch at Liu's cheek behind her, tracing a patch of frost over his skin. "«You might enjoy yourself, playing doctor here, Uncle.»" They aren't related, but it doesn't stop the familial reference. To Liu and Song, Bao-Wei may as well be family, and family they're not intending on usurping at that.

Seemingly unphased by his sister's awkward affections, Liu gestures to the waitress as she arrives. "A…" He looks to Kaydence, then back again, "Harvey Wallbanger, for the lady?" it's like he doesn't trust his english with those words strung together, "Another Jin and Tonic for myself — " Liu pauses, leaning over to motion towards Bao-Wei, "Uncle may have whatever he wishes and however much of it you will give him, put it on Mister Zarek's tab." Liu and Song both smirk at the latter part, and Liu's attentions soon shift back to Kaydence. "How long have you been working for Mister Logan?"

Did he just imply that Kaydence is — "I don't recognize you from here."


Kay's smile falters for a moment and she actually casts a glance down to her attire. Do Ah look like Ah fit in with the goddamned decor, Hong Kong Phooey?! Ah, the things you cannot say to the heads of organised crime families if you want to keep your head. "Ah'm not a whore," she offers in response. "Ah just like'ta party once in a while." Indeed. She isn't wearing her engagement ring. Or her wedding ring. "Ah heard this place was interestin', so Ah wanted to see it for mahself."

Bao-Wei appears to pay no heed to Song's boots on his thigh, nor her frozen touch onto Liu's face. Being similarly unphased, the moniker Uncle fits rather nicely. He gives off the echo of a chuckle to Song's words; all of them. "«I do not play. I Am. I will look into this place, but we shall wait and see how well he thinks that he will continue to do.»"

He finishes his muttering to Song just in time to lift a hand in passing. "No, thank you." While putting something expensive on the horse-man's tab may be worth it, today he simply chooses to say no to the offer of a drink. Perhaps it is the last thing that he needs. Instead, he centers his attention on Kaydence as she dispels Liu's assumptions with a sharp word. The younger man should know by now that the women at the Dagger are under a theme, of sorts. But maybe he is too busy looking at assets to notice.

"Oh I — " Liu stammers for a moment, rolling one shoulder as his expression casts into a lopsided smile, "I did not mean to imply — " His lips draw back from a smile to a grimace, "Mister Logan employs many different people for many different things. I merely assumed, well, that a woman of your caliber would…" Trailing off, Liu is saved from his own awkward recovery when one of the dancers returns with a tray of drinks. "Ah! Well, something to fill my awkwardly opened mouth with." Liu amends his sentence, clearly still a bit distracted by assets, reaching for his drink all too eagerly. He's done enough damage to his ego for one night.

Across the club, there's motion from the bar as Kain makes a hasty retreat from where he was lingering. "Aw! Don't be like that Mista Zarek!" Manny shouts out in response, the first audible thing from the pair of them yet. In his haste, Kain sweeps over to one of the tables, reaching down to grab the hand of one of Logan's girls who had climbed down from the stage earlier. She seems surprised, and only mildly resistant as she's yanked up to her feet, an arm slung around her waist. Manny frowns, visibly, watching as Kain heads for the door with his trophy of the evening.

"«Oh but Uncle,»" She says in a whimsical tone, "«Can't you smell the decay in the air? The blood on the wind? This is all going to end so…»" Song parts her lips, exhaling a cloud of cold mist, "«Beautifully.»" As she motions around the club, her shoulders slack and she slides past Liu, layng across his lap to stare upside-down at Kaydence, cold vapor slipping out of her nostrils. "Did you come here to die?" She asks in a low, soft voice that a child would use. Now Liu is a little uncomfortable, grimacing when Song lays across him less-so than her haunting words to Kaydence.

Sister.»" He mutters in Mandarin to her, "«Must you harass every woman I see?»"

Well, now. That's sobering. Even as Kaydence sips at her vodka and Galliano. She manages to match Song's demeanor enough to appear unafraid, while not posing a challenge. "Ah can't say as Ah did." She looks up, swallowing nervously as Zarek takes flight with his chosen bird of the evening. Shit. "Listen, Ah can see I'm intruding." Slowly, the drawl starts to leak away from her voice, a combination of a sudden need for sobriety and an effort to think about her words before she speaks. "I'll just take my leave. Thank you for the drink, cutie. Maybe I'll see you around sometime." She starts to scoot out of the booth with the intent on making for the shortest route from Point A (the table) to Point B (Manny the Freaking Gorilla).

"«Some scent palates simply are not as keen as yours, Song. I am far too used to the smells to notice them much, anymore…»" At the very least, that is his excuse. Though he can feel the colder air brushing past, Bao-Wei watches the young Chinese woman closely. Once she lies down on her older brother, the old man finds his eyes traveling silently up to the woman that she is addressing. Time and time again he has likely tried to teach Song to be appropriate- frankly, he has begun to give up the endeavor. Luckily, Kaydence is not too visibly disturbed.

Blowing her bangs from her face, Song seems wholly disinterested in the whole brothel now as she lays her arms on the bench seat where Kaydence was just a moment ago, "«Pick me a pretty one, Brother.»" Her eyes halfway close as she waves towards some of Logan's lovely ladies of the night, "«We can charge it to the Horse's Ass.»" Liu closes his eyes as he listens to his sister, covering his eyes with one hand as he lowers his head.

"«As you wish, Sister.»" Looking up, apologetically, to Bao-Wei, Liu's expression turns a bit more wry. "«We will be attending the fights shortly, and Sister prefers to travel with… escorts. You know how she gets around violence.»" There's a faint crook of Liu's lips in what might be a smile, or perhaps a grimace. "«They say in the posters that they have the man who destroyed Midtown here as a fighter.»" Both of Liu's brows raise, "«That would be a handy man to have, wouldn't you say, Uncle?»"

As if to answer Liu's rhetoric, Song croons out, "«I bet he screams wonderfully, with all their voices.»" Her pause is momentary, allowing herself to sit up and loop one arm around Liu's neck, "«Find pretty ones, Brother. Ones that won't break so easily.»"

Across the club, where Kaydence escapes from the uncomfortable company of Song and Liu, she finds Manny drowning his concerns in a Cosmopolitan, slouched on a stool with his shoulders slacked. "Hey there Miss Damaris," His tone of voice indicates his discomfort, "Sorry about that, Kain ain't been the same lately. We had some work to do…" His head tilts from one side to another, "Danny sent him off on some assignment, and… he ain't never been right since. He ain't talked ta' Dixon since either. I dunno what's goin' on with him, he ain't never been like this…" Manny looks up over the lenses of his glasses, "You ain't lookin' so good yourself; relatively speakin'."

Kay sits about as close to Manny as she dares, using his personal bubble as a sort of invisible barrier between her and the Triad. "You know who they are. You know why that's trouble for me." Dropping Linderman's name isn't likely to save her if the Ye siblings decide they want one less detective on the streets. "It's not your fault," she adds quickly, "Kain hasn't been the same for a while now… I've been trying to run into him, but he's been good about avoiding me. I didn't expect to see him here." Kay pushes her drink away with a little groan - though not far enough away that it might get picked up. "Ugh. I think I overdid it tonight." She glances in the direction Kain disappeared to. "Do you have to wait here until he decides to come out again?"

Bao-Wei meets Liu's expression with an almost scornful one of his own. Though he makes that face quite a bit, this time it is aimed at 'control your sister, she is walking all over you'. Not the first time. "«Is that right?»" Is it wise to keep a man like that? If he did it once before, he could do it again, could he not? This little storm brews in silence. "«Handy, and dangerous.»" Always a catch.

"«Beautiful and unbreakable do not often go hand in hand. You may be wiser in remembering to pace your excitement, Song. You will run out of choices.»" This is some dry humor, and even without the touch of amusement in his voice it would still seem that way.

"Naw, I know where he's gonna be," Manny says idly, tracing one finger around the rim of his Cosmopolitan, "He's gonna' take off till 'bout halfway through the fights, then come staggering drunk and… who knows what else, with a lady on each arm to watch someone get the snot beat outta' 'dem, den he's just gonna' tell me to go home." Shaking his head, Manny runs one hand over his bald head. "Things just ain't been the same lately… But it ain't just with Mista Zarek either," one hand raises his glass, taking a dainty sip of the drink before setting it down. "Danny's been busy an' out of the buildin' all'a the time. Miss Zoe has been away on some archaeological dig off in who knows where, an' Dixon's been spendin' time with his lil' one." Tipping his head to one side, Manny frowns, "I ain't even punched Flint Deckard lately." He adds with a somber tone of voice, "It's just a rough patch, ain't it?"

There's a ghost of a smile on Manny's face as he shakes his head, setting down his glass on the bartop again before looking back to Kaydence. "You should go home, Miss Damaris. It ain't safe out here," he nods towards where Bao-Wei, Liu and Song are seated. "Ain't just them either. There's worse stuff out here on the Island, an' you gots a little one all your own to worry 'bout." He reaches out, just resting a hand on the top of the bar in front of Kaydence. "I can take you back to Manhattan if you want. Mista' Zarek's boat ain't far from here."

Liu withers a bit at Bao-Wei's subtle reprimand, pushing Song off of his lap and back into where she was sitting before. "«You would do well to take Uncle's advice.»" It's not quite a no, but it's not the immediate yes that he was going to pamper his sister with. "«Come on, we should leave. If not, you will not get to see Vasya's shadow-puppet show before the fights. I know how long it takes you to pick one out.»" Liu rises up from the table, offering one hand to Song as he does, but his eyes focus on Bao-Wei. "«Stay or join, Uncle. It is your choice, but I for one wish to see what Truman's show has for us tonight.»" Plus he has to keep an eye on Song, there's no telling what she would do unsupervised.

"«Tonight?»" Song asks with a quirk of her lips, taking Liu's hand as she rises up from the seat, "«Tonight will be marvelous, but not as much as the finale…»" Her lips crook back up into a smile, and she turns to look back down at Bao-Wai, one eyebrow disappearing beneath her bangs, "«Come appreciate the art of others suffering, Uncle.»" Her smile turns wry and teasing, "«You should appreciate other artist's work some times.»"

"Christ. It's so hard to make a dishonest living these days, ain't it?" Kay casts one final glance at her drink before deciding the best course of action is simply to tip back her head and drink it all down. That liquid courage. "I can take care of myself," she assures the man. She trails off for a moment, looking around. "All the same, I'll take you up on that offer." She rises from her seat, casting a smile to Manny. "If you ever decide to give up on Zarek, you give me a call, huh? I'm sure I could find you some work."

The world may come crashing down around them if Song went un-babysat. Bao-Wei considers staying in the lounge to soak up that atmosphere, but there is a niggling need to be entertained at the back of his brain and the curiosity of further action elsewhere. "«I will take my time, but I will be there. I doubt that you will have trouble in finding me.»" He certainly sticks out of a crowd. At the last comment from Song, he offers her a sliver of a smile, peering up past his glasses. "«I shall. Now, go on and find your newest …friend before you miss what you came for.»" What a strange girl. Hopefully the duo will take this and move on; he will show up likely just as things begin, in his usual timely fashion. Is he ever in a hurry? Sometimes it seems as if he never is.

"Manny just offers Kaydence a smile at that, though it's a somewhat sad one. "I'm with Mista' Zarek to the bitter end," he admits somewhat reluctantly, "I owe him more'n you could think, Miss Damaris. An' Manny Calavera ain't nothin' if not loyal." Slipping off of his barstool, Manny rises like some great monolith to his full height, resting a hand on Kay's shoulder gently. "But th' offer is much appreciated Miss Damaris… Much Appreciated." Glancing back to the Triad at Kain's booth, Manny gives a slight shake of his head and pats Kaydence gently on the back, "C'mon Miss, let's get you home."

"«We look forward to seeing you, Uncle.»" Liu leads Song away from the table, eying Kaydence and Manny as they make their departure from the Happy Dagger through the criss-crossing maze of prostitutes and thugs. "«One last thing, Uncle.»" He turns to look down at the much older man with a slight incline of his head, "«When you return home, do ask Father if our record of police detectives is up to date…»" His eyes track back to the door, and at his side Song's lips curl up into a mischievous smile, even as her brother seems preoccupied with Damaris' disappearing silhouette through the door.

"«I think I may have to get that date after all.»"

February 9th: Three Spooks And Some Change
February 9th: When The Shadows Get Too Friendly
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