Save The Bull


logan_icon.gif tess_icon.gif

Scene Title Save The Bull
Synopsis …ride a cowboy.
Date October 17, 2010


This is one of those slightly quirky places that some people find cute or kitschy and some people find intolerable. The theme is apparent even from the set of swinging saloon doors that marks the real entrance beyond the vestibule/hallway used for carding patrons. Inside the bar proper, the theme really takes off. It doesn't look like it was originally built as a saloon, given its rather large, open floorplan and utter lack of old-timey architectural features, but the walls have been papered with imitation wood paneling and a couple of stuffed dear heads are stuck up on the walls. The large dance floor is hardwood, raised slightly from the concrete floor beneath it. The long, polished bar sits sturdily in front of a wide selection of booze and drink specials are chalked up on boards here and there. A few posters on the wall advertise Wednesdays as 'Ladies' Night' and there are a few advertisements for area gay bars. The real feature of the place is a roped off corner on the other side of the room from the bar. It holds the pride and joy of the bar: a large mechanical bull on an amply padded surface. The music is a mixture of country and the usual array of music popular in clubs with bumping beats that the clientele certainly seem to get down with. Speaking of the clientele, they are probably some of the most conclusive evidence that this establishment does indeed cater especially to the gay community. Whether or not that was the original purpose of the bar is hard to say.

Though it's Wednesdays that are offered as ladies nights, there are some people who just don't pay much attention to things. Then there are people like Tess who just don't care and do whatever seems like fun to them at the time. And apparently hitting up a gay bar when she's one of a small few woman there sounded like fun to the littlest Zarek. Or at least the start of the fun.

Once here though, something else caught the blonde's attention and had her squealing in delight. It's happened. She's spotted the mechanical bull. Ignoring the fact that she's got her bulky backpack on, as she almost always does when out and about, she wasted no time in heading over to it, finding a cowboy hat to snatch right off the head of one of the more effeminate cowboys in the room, and scrambling onto the bull, which is where she is now, just waiting the last few seconds before it turns on.

The pilfered hat is waved in the air wildly, while the other hand holds on, and though it sounds a bit odd with her Cajun drawl, Tess is gleefully calling out, "YEEHAW! Ride 'em cowboy!" just before the thing starts to move and she lets out a whoop of delight.

It's difficult to not spot the loudest fag hag in the room, although this may be an inaccurate assumption. The mood is actually rather accommodating to such antics, with alcohol being free flowing (if not free flowing) and only some people being willing enough to mount the mechanical bull and give her a spin. One of those people who don't, who are here for a specific purpose, happen to notice.

And so it comes to be that Logan is leaning against one of the posts that rope off the padded area around the abomination itself. There is a certain old world Southern charm to his get up, tonight, without being very costume, a black suit with a metallic sheen, littered with white polkerdots that it might cause optical illusion if he moves too quickly. A black shirt with a prim collar, and a Western string tie of a differently textured darkness, and a greyly silver, pinstripe waistcoat with a swooping U neck.

He's watching, patiently, as the robot cow beneath her begins its spinning and her bucking. Quirks half a smirk of amusement at the raucous cheers of encouragement around him.

With the bull moving and Tess all caught up in the fun of trying to hang on while playing the cowgirl, Logan goes unnoticed at first. Instead that hat continues to be waved as her body jerks forward and back with the less than smooth movements of the machine beneath her. Even when it picks up speed she's grinning as she's thrown to and fro, letting out the occasional laugh or yeehaw. But then, some people are just gluttons for punishment.

But there's an art to riding a bull, whether mechanical or not, and it's an art that Tess has yet to master, or even come close to. And while she's stubborn enough to want to hang on indefinitely, it's not long before she's tumbling off and landing in the padding near Logan. She lays there for a minute, just giggling madly, holding her stolen hat against her chest. "That was fun! I wanna do it again!" she says to no one specific.

"You do seem the determined type." Though she addresses no one, Logan responds, his voice just loud enough to cut above the music, her own rushing blood, the clamour of conversation, without actually shouting. Just enough sharpness of tone to be communicable, pointed and demanding attention. He doesn't move from his comfortable lean, though he does tilt his head in a minimal effort of making proper eye contact. The shifting lights of bar bounce off his back, shard past his shoulders and emphasise blondeness and pale skin both in contrast to the sombre quality of his attire.

Hearing a familiar voice has Tess craning her head around to peer over at Logan, still grinning her giddy grin. "Who says I care? The ride is fun while it lasts." She sits up then gets to her feet, but rather than jumping back on the bull, she moves over to Logan, perching the hat on her head. "Trick is to get on the first time," she informs him, tone and expression one of someone imparting a great truth.

"You should get up on it. Though I think the stick might make it uncomfortable. Which really is a pity 'cause you were all nice the first time, and are cute'n all, and not everyone is hung up on who my dad is. I'm certainly not. And you were a bad date, by the way, I had to get a ride home from Richard, which wasn't really a bad thing, but it was bad manners!" She is worried about bad manners? "But how you doin'? You fire the chick workin' for you who harasses people the second they walk in the door? You really should, yanno, I bet she drives people off all the time. And like the duds! So shiny!" she says, beaming at him and finally taking a moment to just breathe.

"Your dad's a criminal who've shot people in the head for less things than dancing with their daughter at a mobster gala," Logan points out, that smile he'd been wearing swift to vanish as clear eyes roll skyward, then back down to regard her. "And I have a reputation that precedes me. Believe me, it's not respect and prissiness that dictate my actions — and for all that he doesn't give a fuck about you, Kain's about as emotionally mature as a whore on the rag."

A glance down at his polkerdotted self, and he concedes, "Thank you. I do try. What did you expect me to do? The way you walked off upon realising I wasn't giving you everything your little heart desired, I figured we were done." And a hand lifts, absently tweaking the sit of the cowboy hat on her head.

"Ina said you were insulting our girls. Critiquing a newbie is one thing. Dissing our business is another."

Tess makes a 'pfft' sound and waves a hand dismissively. "Dad doesn't care what I do. He told me when I said somethin' 'bout jumpin' you. He tried to pay me to leave the city in fact. So what does he care if I dance with someone? Besides, I'm twenty. I haven't been a virgin in years. And of course I walked off, you all but shoved me towards other people when I tried to get you to dance'n went off to leave with Nicole, remember?"

Her head tilts then, brow furrowing lightly in concentration for a moment, before she nods once, a small movement, then shakes her head. "She's full of shit. I said you could hire some better talent, and I mumbled it for cryin' out loud, it's not like I was yellin' to anyone that your girls all sucked or somethin' stupid like that. And the girl who was on stage was slackin'. So sure as hell didn't do anything to make her come over and start harassin' me. She insulted me, then threatened to kick me out if I didn't tell her why I was lookin' for you, like it was any of her business."

She leans forward then, to whisper to him, "I think has a constipation problem. Nothin' else could make a person that bitchy. 'Cept maybe not gettin' laid on a regular basis."

"I can think of at least one more thing," Logan says, coolly, but it's delivered with a smile this time, before he's stepping back. Rather than leave conversation and encounter at that, he offers a hand out to Tess to help out over the ropes and out of the pit. "I won't spell out the situation with your dad than I already have. You could, however, trust me that I do actually know your father much better than you know him, and I know myself more than you know me. A dance is never just a dance."

He shrugs a shoulder, "But fuckit, let's leave it there, shall we? I don't think you listen as much as you talk and blimey, Kain's a boring subject."

"God yes he is," Tess agrees, taking his hand and stepping over the ropes. "But seriously, I really did just want a dance. I like dancin'. I will allow that you know my biological sperm donor better'n I do though. Still, pity I got chased out. Was gonna ask you for a job since the guy at the salon didn't call me back. Got a job at another club though. And speakin' of, you've got a club full of scantily clad chicks, so why you here? Did you come to ride the bull? You really should you know," she says, grinning up at him.

Logan is already walking — if she follows, it's incidental, but also assumed. Seeing as he continues to listen, continues to talk to her, and all. He slides his hands into the satin lined pockets, eyes hooding halfway while not so checking out the merchandise beneath lowered lashes, body swiveling just a little on the axis of his spine to regard a shirtless cowboy that drifts on by the pair, before he's on course. "Not the bull," he corrects. "And I won't be riding it in this suit."

"Oh god you came to ride the cowboys." Tess delivers a light slap with the back of her hand to his arm as she falls into step beside him. Or at least she tries to deliver one. "At least tell me you bat for both teams, what with the whole leavin' the party with Nicole'n all, because it'd be one hell of a shame for a guy who looks like you not to be into girls. I might even pout for a whole four seconds if you tell me that," she says, but she's grinning the entire time.

"You've gotta point about the suit though. Think I could convince you to come back sometime in somethin' not a suit? We could totally have a contest to see who can stay in the saddle the longest," she says, giving him a bit of a brow waggle to go with her grin.

"I like my dignity and bollocks right where they are, thanks anyway. And my livestock with two legs," Logan denies, carrying their trajectory to the bar, all the better for leaning. He does, hooking an elbow against the high bar and linking both hands together as he slits a look her way, mouth curling feline-like in a considering smile. Considering, being a fake faggot, but who is he to speak of himself that way?

Dick Cardinal? "Gender, not quite as important as that qualifier, no," he asserts instead, lifting a hand to rest chin in his palm. "Don't be a stripper, if it's for all that female empowerment bullshit. It's such," eye roll for emphasis, "a lie."

Tess joins him in leaning against the bar, laughing. "Oh good. Women all over the world just stopped with the razor blades inches from their wrists. Pity you're all caught up on who I'm related to, but ah well. You're fun anyway, when you're not bein' uptight."

His comment about strippers has her grinning impishly. "I know it is. Which is why I strip 'cause it lets me dance and it's good money if you know how to work the crowd. And you know I practically grew up in a strip club. I picked up things here and there from the dancers. Plus I know how to move," she says, giving a slow shimmy downward until she's nearly crouched, then back up. Girl does have some grace to her. "What about you though? Just in it for the money?"

"Oh, I don't dance," Logan says, as if correcting her of some very wide spread mistake, turning towards the bar and lifting a hand to flag down the bartender. He has a tab, apparently, because he doesn't get his wallet out when he requests a double gin on ice, before he juts a nod her way. "You want anything while 'm here?"

"Ahh, so that's why," Tess says, sounding as though she's just figured out some great mystery, and nodding. And, though she's only twenty, and doesn't — yet — have a fake ID saying otherwise, she says, "Yeah, I'll have a rum'n coke. But I meant why a strip club as opposed to one that dresses the girls? The money? You like lookin' at scantily clad girls all day? Or 'cause of the whole strip club childhood?"

There is a raise of an eyebrow at the bartender, some advisement about not getting up on them about IDs that may or may not be heeded, and may or may not be why they both get served up their drinks. Logan wrinkles his nose as he observes the surface of his drink, takes a sip. No lime in this, just straight gin — clears the sinuses. "I don't mind looking at scantily clad girls all day," he admits. ('Admits.') "But truth be told, I got given the job wivout much choice in the matter, but it would've been an easy decision. Been doing it a while, anyway, and you do what you're good at."

"You didn't have a choice? How's that?" Tess asks, brow furrowing lightly, head tilting. But then she has booze, and really, what underage person isn't going to be a bit giddy about scoring a drink? So she grins and sips at it, without the hacking and coughing that would signal that she's unused to its contents.

There's a look angled down at her, assessment, before Logan casts an easy shrug, brings up his drink to take a deeper pull. "Take what you can get in this city. I had a strip business on Staten sodding Island, which— there was an electrical fire, so that was fucked, and I only just managed to get the Brooklyn place a couple of months after — so I count myself reasonably fortunate for that. Where's this place you're working now, anyway?"

Tess shrugs as she sips at her drink. "Just your run a' the mill strip club, basically. Kinda high end, though not as nice as your place. Still, tips are good, bouncers are good, and I don't get groped too much. Nothin' really special 'bout it." She snickers softly. "Had a friend come and visit me there. Thought I was kiddin' her about where I worked. She stared for a few minutes. It was funny. Startin' to get a lot of visitors and repeat customers though."

Another shrug, another sip. "Need to get another job though. This one pays well, but I wanna get a really nice camera and some photography classes'n got…stuff. Hopin' the salon guy'll call me back. He was cool. Totally fuckin' gay, had to be, but cool. Know anywhere that might be hirin'? Doesn't gotta be dancin'."

"Not particularly, no — not off the top've my head, but have the totally fuckin' gay salon guy call me at Burlesque sometime and I'll give you a character reference," may or may not be genuine, and even if it was, that she'd take up such an offer— well maybe she might. Logan could also just be poaching, though, scenery considered as he takes surreptitious and continual glances passed her shoulder, over his own. His thumbnail tracks along the rim of his glass, focusing on her as he adds, "I sort've hate this place. Maybe I'll buy it."

And with that whimsical thought shared, he downs the rest of his gin.

"Really? That's so awesome of you!" Tess says, beaming at him. "I was totally wrong about you. You're not a stick in the mud at all." Then she glances around, grins, and looks back to him, head canting. "If you hate it, then why buy it? So you can change it or tear it down or somethin'? 'Cause if you change it, you totally gotta keep the bull." Beat. "Wait, if you hate it, why are you here? Sure there are other gay bars in the city where you can scope out hot guys."

Then she brightens and looks positively devilish. "I know! I'll find a strip club that shows guys and take you there! I'll even buy you a lapdance!"

"You should try asking one question at a time," Logan proposes, after hesitation of thought, "if you want any of 'em answered, anyway." Which means he's not touching any of those, now, running his tongue over his teeth to capture last droplets of gin and the searing taste of it, pushing his glass more towards the inner of the bar and shaking his head against a refill. "And fuck no — if there's one thing I don't want to be, it's a strip club client. Never you mind me, I've no shortage, save for the rare moments I get distracted by someone who don't bat for the right team.

"Sweet of you, though, in your own little bizzare way."

"I've been told that. But while I'm askin' one thing my mind comes up with another question and if I don't ask it it'll just fffft! Right outta my mind," Tess explains with a grin. "Plus then I come up with a buncha questions I wanna ask, and can't decide on just one to ask." She swings her ever present backpack around, digging in it until she finds a scrap of paper and a pen and starts scribbling on the former. "I gotta get goin', since I've got work tomorrow'n everything, but I got myself a cell." And the paper is offered out to him. "You need a wing-girl sometime, or to hang out and drool over well formed guys, or to forget who my daddy is and take a tumble, you gimme a call, 'kay?"

A soft snort follows, more amused than cynical, and Logan takes the card. Getting a girl's number was not the outcome of the evening he had in mind, but like he said — New York City provides little in the way of choice. He swirls the scrap of paper between his fingers, before opening his jacket and slipping it within breastpocket. "Take care of yourself."

Tess gives him a dimpled grin. "Darlin', that's what I'm best at," she says, giving his hip a little bump with her own. "You try'n do the same. And have some fun!" And with that, she's heading towards the door, humming along with the song playing.

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