abby_icon.gif caliban_icon.gif gillian_icon.gif

Scene Title Shortfalls
Synopsis Abigail and Gillian arrange to meet with Caliban and ask him a few questions regarding an old invitation.
Date May 4, 2010

The Corinthian, Las Vegas

Melissa and Kendall are once more bonding somewhere on the strip. Abigail had promised Gillian to try and get a meeting with Caliban so that she could asked her questions. It had landed them in the Corinthian, to meet him at some point though when exactly, she and Gillian didn't know quite when. He's a busy man and understandably so. Thems the dice when you are who Caliban is.

Routlette, craps, cards, they all hold their pull for some. You need to know the game, know the odds, know - As Kenny Rogers says - when to fold them. As such, Abigail had dragged Gillian off to something far more tame, shiny and exciting. Something she knows her mother loves to do when they go to Mississippi from time to time. The allure of the slot machines, better odds, cups with quarters and chairs to sit on as well.

In goes a quarter at the 25 cent machines, one of many in the cup with Abby. The upside to saving the world and not having to pay taxes is that … you can afford to drop forty bucks in quarters. buttons pressed, and her hand closes around the lever and pulls down, waiting to see the barrels turn. She hasn't won anything yet, likely won't, but it's fun. Crutches lean up against the side of the machine, the two of them on the end of an aisle, a light blue dress that graduates to darker at the bottom and gold foil leaves falling much the same.

"I wonder what really are the odds?" She murmurs to Gillian a glance up to the sign above in flashing lights that states the jackpot is eighty grand and climbing. "Bet if we won that, we could rent the penthouse at the Venetian for the rest of our trip. Tip Elias nice too, for the trip home. All the sandwhiches he could possibly want"

In the old days, people would pull the thing to make the machine spin. Now they just have to hit buttons and watch the things spin around. There's multiple lines that people can bet on, or just one, Gillian sticks to the bigger odds, by betting on as many lines as possible. That means she'll go through her quarters more quickly. "In order to make money on slots you have to find a slutty one," she says, speaking quietly as she drops more quarters in, pushes the button, and then— dingdingdingding. Not a big win, just $10, but gives her more quarters to spend right where she is. It drops into the bucket for the moment.

"We can always kiss him on the cheek. Unless he's gay, most guys like that as a tip. Though I guess we do owe him." There's a glance at the clock on the wall (as she doesn't wear a watch) to check the time, before she looks back and stuffs more just-won quarters in. "I don't think we got the slutty slot machines, though. The odds of winning are pretty small."

"Slutty slot machine?" There's the heat riding to her cheeks, coloring her further than she was before. A glance from Gillian, then back to the machine, slipping more quarters in after clapping for her friend and her ten dollar win. "Oh lord this is sin city" She mutters, shifting in her seat as she reaches to pull the lever. Someone down from them slips a card into a slot, attached to an elastic around their wrist. So many options to play. Quarters clink, you can run your hand into them, pour them out, and they can be stacked into tall towers.

"He'll show up soon Gillian. I'm sure of it. They have camera's all over this place. Ten dollars you just one, that he knew we were here the moment we walked in" She offers a smile to the other woman. "You'll get your answer. I'm sure of it"

"These are my quarters!" Gillian says, pressing the bucket up against her breasts. Unlike back in the city, she's actually able to wear something close to revealing, showing a little cleavage, and the pressing of the cup only accents that. "And I think you're right, so so not taking that wager. Isn't he even security dude or something?" Which would make sense he'd be standing at the cameras, keeping an eye out for sorta girlfriend and friend that he met all of twice. Briefly.

"And it's slutty cause the slot machines that pay out most are called loose, they're supposedly programed with better payout percentages, so depending on how many people shove money into them, they'll spew the money back more often with the slutty ones— it was in this video in the hotel."

In his pin stripe suite, black dress shirt and polished leather shoes, there's nothing special about Robert Caliban that identifies him as a Linderman Group employee. He doesn't wear a name tag or have a bluetooth headset nestled in his ear, and as he makes his way down the aisle and adjusts his jacket's cufflinks, he's flanked not by body guards but by his own shadow. Blond hair still damp from the last shower he took and smelling faintly of cologne instead of the staler aromas of whiskey and gin that sometimes cling to him, he approaches at a slow lope and rubs the heel of his hand along his jaw, freshly shaved.

He promised he'd meet with them, and here he is — right on schedule. "Abigail," he greets in a husky baritone. "Miss Childs."

No Whiskey :(

At the sound of Caliban's greeting, she of the blonde hair turns her face towards the source, gracing him with a smile that while not as beaming as it might have been in the past, it's not not shy or fearful. "And there he is. I was telling Gillian you probably knew when we'd stepped foot in here about an hour ago." One last pull - and loss - of the machine she's at, cup is collected and she slides off the seat. "Should we go find a spot in one of the restaurants? SOme place quiet?" Where Gillian can inquire what she wishes to know. "Robert, meet Gillian again"

The bucket gets no extra quarters to top it off, after the last push of a button, but Gillian spins on her seat and puts the bucket down from between her boobs to sit on her lap. "Yeah, it is good to meet you again. For the third time. First time was confusing— for me, second time really brief, and this one— hopefully will be enlightening." Or that's what she's hoping, since had been one of the smaller reasons she'd said yes, the bigger ones being how cold it was, and how much she needed a break after— everything…

Holding the bucket with one hand, she holds out her other. "And you're right on time. Punctuality is rare in men. At least men I've known."

"Are the men you've known very career-minded?" Caliban asks Gillian with a lift of his brows as he dips a gloved hand to place it on the small of Abigail's back. "There's a cocktail bar off the lobby with an hors d'oeuvre menu if you're hungry. Bacon-wrapped scallops, salmon en croute with dill yogurt sauce, miniature andouille sausages." He makes it sound more like a sales pitch than an offer, but is courteous enough to add as an addendum: "I'll buy."

The men that Abby knows Gillian knows, aren't very.. career minded. Not that she can tell. "The cocktail bar sounds fine. Though heavens if I know what en croute means" Covered in croutons? Maybe. Her cup is slid to Gillians, neatly plopped to sit right in and on top of the other womans coins so that she can get herself arranged, aware of Caliban's gloved hand on her back. Makes for a bit of a frown, blonde brows pulled down. But by the time she gets herself situated and takes the cup back, the slot machine is made vacant for some other soul to hopefully win the jackpot while she, with the others, make for said bar.

"No, the men I know are pretty much stuck on themselves half the time. Probably think the world would fall apart if they weren't there— That's probably exaggerating, but— they can be a little self-centered," Gillian professes, as she slides all the way off, leaving the slot machine to see if someone else desires to push it's button or pull it's lever, as she agrees to go drinking, "I can't drink too much, but if it's one you…" One drink shouldn't make her ability go out of control and flood the area with dangerous evolved boosting energies. "Look, what I wanted to meet you for was— you met me to drop off an invitation. You wouldn't tell me much then, but hey, it's months later now."

Caliban leads Gillian and Abigail down the aisle, his attention divided between the two women as they make their way out of the casino and into the grand marble lobby, past the front desk toward a pair of darkened double doors fashioned from glass, candlelight bleeding faintly through the opaque panes that separate the cocktail lounge from the hustle and bustle of the hotel itself. "I won't pretend to know what Angela is thinking," he says, skirting around a bellhop dressed in a double-breasted jacket in black, "but I suspect that she sees a little of herself in you, and you know how older generations love to live vicariously through the next."

"Well, see, Peter's mom. Probably trying to make up for my partner the big fat jerk of a heart breaker" Abby points out to Gillian, smoothly moving along with the pair of them. SHe assumes that the name of Angela, that Caliban means Mrs. Petrelli.

The name may not have been recognized at first, but Abby fills in the blank there. Or fills it in with an assumption, as Gillian quickly shifts her eyes over in surprise. "And here I was thinking it was— nevermind. I wasn't expecting that." Mrs. Petrelli. "I doubt it was that— why would you make up for your son being a dick when he's going to be there with someone else. It was fun, though, so…" She trails off a bit and keeps following close, even if her eyes are now diverted a little lower, as she goes over some things in her mind. "Glad to know, though! Even if I don't know why." The why will bug her for a while, as it often does. Even if she knows in some situations there isn't a why at all.

"To be perfectly frank," Caliban says, pushing open the doors, "I think you can do a great deal better than Peter. He's needy, inflexible, childish — and these are his mother's words, not mine." Inside, the sounds of improvised jazz music coming from a raised stage with a grand piano on it fill the bar, which is a lot smaller and more intimate than either of the women were probably expecting. The doorman gives Caliban a nod and, lifting his chin, gestures towards one of the unoccupied tables closest to the back where the lighting is lowest and the view of the pianist isn't obscured by other patrons.

Oh snap. Well, ones mother is always allowed to acknowledge ones own children's shortfalls. She knows her own parents thoughts on her own behavior but that's because… well, she close to them. Acknowledges their thoughts regarding herself. "He can be childish" She agree's. Needy and infelxible… "But he's a very good paramedic and I can't wait to be back on my foot so I ca-" And with that, Abigail shuts her mouth, a flicker of a glance towards Caliban then to the table with a painted on smile. "Salmon en croute is what? I'm sure Robert or Mrs Petrelli know someone who you might like to date Gillian."

"You forgot insensetive. And hypocritical," Gillian responds to the badmouthing with a shrug, though— "I wouldn't know how good a paramedic he is, though, so I'll take your word on it." The attempt she'd made at friendship turned into something— not great. "Piano music. Man, everything about you is very high class," she comments as she settles into the unoccupied table, at a chair so that they can sit next to each other and she's closer to Abby, but not between them. "And I don't really want to date anyone right now. I'm not that needy. And I wouldn't have the time for it right now, anyway. Flings aside, I spend too much time at the Lighthouse." And despite the action her bed might be getting right now, she's not bringing action like that home with her.

"They cook the salmon with a little bit of rice, hard-boiled egg and mushrooms before bundling it up into a little puff pastry with Gruyere cheese on a bed of wilted spinach," Caliban explains. "Heavy, at least as far as appetizers go. If you ladies are feeling daring, I can have a chat with the chef and make a sampler out of it. No one's allergic to shellfish, I hope — I have it on very good authority that the oysters are to die for."

He takes a seat with his back to the wall rather than the door, and it's a move both women will probably recognize. Although Caliban doesn't want to alarm them, he's not comfortable enough in these surroundings to let his guard down. Any relaxedness is a facade. "I heard about what happened," he says of the Lighthouse. "Mister Fulk and I spoke briefly over the phone. Is there anything I can do?"

"Whatever you think we might enjoy Robert. Might as well be daring and all that while we're here" Whatever will make him happy and feel like a good host to boot. But something happened at the Lighthouse? Stands to reason Caliban would know, and obviously Gillian knows. There's a concerned glance to the latter and a questioning look. "What happened Gillian?"

"I— I think that everything that could be done, has," Gillian says, eyes sliding down and away, to the table, before looking back at Abby. "There are wild dogs loose on Staten Island and one of them… killed a kid of ours. Denisa. I don't know if you ever met her." A lot of people had met the outspoken stubborn tweleve year old. "We got some big huskies to play with the kids and stay outside when it's not freezing, and the kids stay indoors for now, except in small groups with a couple adults, so there's less chance of any of them wandering off unnoticed. I think they know better now, too. Thank you, though. If I think of anything, I'll let you know."

"I hunt," Caliban suggests mildly and, sensing Gillian's discomfort, leaves it at that. Abigail tells him to order what he thinks they might like, and when the server comes by that's exactly what he does, opening their tab with a Gin Sour, Bellini and a Bijou, though it isn't clear which drink belongs to who until he flashes Gillian a tentative smile across the table. "It means jewel in French," he says. "They call it that because it combines the colours of the three most precious in the world. Gin for diamonds, vermouth for rubies and chartreuse for emeralds."

If Abigail didn't know better, she might mistake his behaviour for flirting and not the honest attempt to cheer her that it is. "I can see what Angela sees."

"You do?" Hello there Robert. You hunt. Victor never hunted. Flint hunted things of a different kind. More surprise. There's something new each time with Caliban and interest sparks in the blonde's eyes. "Preferred animal?" But perhaps hunting isn't the best topic and she can save that for another time and there's a new drink to learn. "Oh, a Bijoux. I'll have remember that, make it for Gillian if she ever comes to the bar. It sounds like an interesting drink" Gin sour is for him, which leave, probably the Bellini for herself and there's a broader smile at that. She knows it, she likes it.

"How was the bus ride down Robert? It wasn't too bad I hope. Do you have an idea of when you'll be heading back to the city? OR are you here until the snow goes away and make the rest of us jealous. Gillian and I are pretty sure we're all due for bad colds when we hit the snow again"

"You do?" Gillian says, though to a very different part of his conversation that Abby did. The hunting might be intriguing, and she's thinking on it, but the dogs haven't attacked the kids again, so she can hope that maybe the few they shot at the Garden a week later were the majority of the pack. Or maybe the reclaimed zone move in scared them off— it's a hope.

"I don't know Angela at all, so— I wouldn't know." Though her voice is soft, she goes along with the offer of a drink, "I like most those drinks, so we'll see if I like them together. In French." The Bijou is started on, with small sips to flavoring. Three precious jewels mixed into one, and given to her. "We're supposed to go home in a few days. I'll be glad to see the kids, not glad to see the weather."

"I'll be here until I find a large enough rug to sweep this under," Caliban says, and as if on cue the front doors open again. A large man built like a bull with the bluetooth headset that the Briton doesn't have steps inside and scans the bar from behind a pair of sunglasses. He spies Caliban before Caliban spies him; it isn't until he's halfway across the floor that the women's dining companion lets a long-suffering sigh leak from his nostrils, lips thinning out into a less amicable expression, though he does not rise from his seat at the table to greet him.

Here he comes and there, Robert is bound to go. It's becoming slightly standard and the press of her pink lips is showing that she might rather like to take her crutches and smack Mr. Bluetooth across the knee with them to buy her and Gillian more time. Okay, no, buy Abby more time with her Beau. "We're about to be abandoned" Spoken into the straw of her Bellini right before she takes a sip, a side and upwards glance to Robert. "Some day" She murmurs with one hand cupped upwards in her lap, the other has her fingers toying with the straw.

"I haven't met angela. I have a feeling some day I will. Can't sit day after day beside her son." And dependant upon what Peter had offered to Abby. "Robert, before you go" Because she's pretty sure it's inevitable. "Can I see you again? Before we leave town? I don't want to bug our transportation to come here again so soon. Might make him nervous" Since dead men aren't supposed to be teleporting living people. "About…" She wiggles her fingers, like she'd done so long ago when. About what she can supposedly do.

"It seems you always have to leave soon after I meet up with you," Gillian says, taking a longer drink on hers, but trying to be careful about being too fast. Even getting buzzed can be dangerous around people who don't have control, or don't even know what their ability happens to be. She may have good control normally, but drunk isn't normal.

"You could probably stay a couple days by yourself if you needed. In a cheaper hotel." If he wasn't avoiding touching her without gloves, she'd suggest staying with him a few nights, but.

"You should definitely make some extra time in your busy schedule to see her again." No, she's not meddling— or well, okay, she is a little.

"Of course," Caliban starts, but before he can elaborate the man in the sunglasses arrives at their table and places a meaty hand on his shoulder to get his attention. Blue eyes lift to a fat face with ears that stick out on either side of his bald head.

"They made a positive identification at the morgue," the stranger says slowly, rolling the words around in his mouth as if he could taste them and determine whether they should be swallowed or spat out. "It's him."

Immediately, Caliban straightens in his seat, one gloved hand clutching at the edge of the table as he rises, long legs unfolding, and levels a flat look at the bald man. "You're sure?"

Dead people. Always a downer unless your a funeral home operator. Of course she could extend her stay, go down to a smaller room since there wouldn't need to be room for three others. "I might stay Gillian. It's not like the bar is open and peter's taking care of the animals" And until she can put weight on her foot, she can't work the EMT bay even.

Her hands comes down on Caliban's giving it a squeeze before letting go. Her silent permission to go if he has to. She won't complain and it's the full weight of her southern hospitality that has her looking over to the other man. "Take good care of him. I don't want a scratch on him, of the lord help you, I shall have a woman's fury" It's an honestly sunny smile that accompanies that. "Or there will be more bodies to identify!"

"That sounds omnious," Gillian says, sipping on her drink as she watches Robert move away with unknown guy, but nods at Abby's possible staying for a few extra days. It won't be quite so hard on the teleporter if he only has to come back for one, and— if all goes well she could take the bus with him. That's her way of thinking on it.

"I am glad you invited me along. I didn't realize how much I just needed a vacation from New York." That didn't involve a desert prison, the frozen continent, the wilds of Argentina, or all the things that came with those times. "I hope everything goes okay." She waves a hand. With whatever that is.

Caliban dips his head to plant a kiss on Abigail's cheek and is rewarded with a sharp hiss of pain breathed out against her neck before he draws himself back up again, touches gloved fingertips to his mouth, and — with a muttered farewell to both women — moves off at the stranger's side.

The blonde's warning doesn't go ignored, but it does go unacknowledged. It isn't until the pair is almost out of earshot that the stranger looks down at the top of Caliban's head and asks in a low voice just loud enough to be heard as they drift out the doors: "How long do you think you can keep this up—?"

The blonde's warning was a joke. Sorta. But with the words heard, maybe it wasn't in the best of taste and the hand that rises to her cheek where Caliban's lips graced her skin gets a lingering touch. "Great. Well, now I think I know why he's wearing gloves" She grouses, watching the retreating men and taking a long sip of her Bellini. "How long can a relationship last if he can't touch you?"

There's a soft sigh and she rests her head on Gillians shoulder. "I'm glad you came, at least when we go back, we can remember the heat. "I keep telling Al that we'll leave New York for India, or Italy. If I go, I'll bring you again okay?"

There's a quiet glance after them, before she looks at the blonde, wondering a bit about the flinch. Gillian had one such experience in the past, with a red haired toad girl's ability. It made Gabriel high and she stopped touching him much from fear that she'd OD him. It wouldn't last much longer than that, but not because he couldn't touch her. A bare hand goes up to pet Abby's hair, much as she would have one of the older kids who sometimes need a shoulder to cry on. There's no pulling back from her… "It could be he just needs to adjust to— whatever it is."

The hand continues to rub gently, eyes closing a bit. "It'll depend on what's going on when you decide to go, and how much I need a break. And for the record— I do like this guy. Even if you dumped my kid brother." And even if he seems to have trouble touching her.

"Yeah, well. Your brother was always trying to one up me with regards to a date. As if he needed to outdo me. I mean, I took him to the trapeze school because I thought he'd enjoy it" Which he had. "Your brother was a good man Gillian. He'll make some other woman happy but I don't think he would have made me happy. He wouldn't have been able to stand by while I save the world."

She succumbs to the petting a bit more, a silent hope that maybe that's what it is, that he just needs to adjust to whatever that was. "Well, at least now we'll never know whether oysters are an aphrodisiac. But we'll get to try salmon en croute" Silver lining. "A free meal on my guy"

"Hey, I totally understand you not choosing Vic. I don't think I could date him, either," Gillian says, not just meaning it in the 'we were raised as brother and sister so it's icky' department. He's just not the type she could see herself dating. "He's a good kid, but— yeah, there's a reason I never told him half the stuff I was involved in. He'd have to help, and try to get me to stay out of it." Cause that's what her brother does…

Salmon en Croute— "I usually don't eat things I can't pronounce, but since I'm not paying." And she'll figure out how to eat the oysters, too. "Just be glad that if they are an aphrodisiac, I really do prefer men in my bed to women." Why yes, she just vaguely hit on Abby. With a dimpled tease.

"Hey, hey, if I were that kind of woman Gillian, I just might too" She sits up proper, another sip of the fruited alcohol and a grin tossed Gillians way. There's more to do after the food of course. Go blow the rest of the quarters, find Melissa and Kendall and go take in a show, dinner, plenty of stuff.

"What happens in vegas stays in vegas" She points out.

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