Snakes And Rabbits


edward_icon.gif feng_icon.gif ghost2_icon.gif logan_icon.gif

Scene Title Snakes And Rabbits
Synopsis One usually hunts the other. This snake, however, is stalking a wolf.
Date June 16, 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's almost four by the time the most recent stolen vehicle in the little relay race set up between Jersey and Staten roils in behind the Happy Dagger, asphalt graveling noise underneath the tires.

The sedan was swapped out forty minutes ago, not far from the motel where Matt Parkman had retreated with his diminutive ninja of a daughter and insatiable barrage of questions, and Edward had appeared to remain asleep then, and again when Ghost made a brief pit stop to drop his tactical gear at the little coastline hovel where he keeps his bike when he's pretending to the world at large that he doesn't have it. By now, his overextension headache has crescendoed from a dull, bloody-nosed ache to a rolling thunder that makes turning his head a trial he isn't willing to expend his comfort on unless strictly necessary.

Thus, it isn't until he wrenches the keys out of ignition, unstraps his seatbelt, and finds the rearview mirror's abridged version of the situation unhelpful, that he twists around again. Cranes his head to study the prone shape of the man tumbled out across the backseat. Black eyebrows furrow, deepening the lines of middle across his face— only to smooth out again, when the torsion of muscle across skull bone elicits an unwanted twinge in the recesses of his brain.

"Morning, Ray." Technically. The clock in the dash glares stick-figured digits through the gap between front seats, a dully luminescent green.

A dry swallow followed by blearily opening eyes accompanies a ragged exhalation of words. "Well, this wasn't quite what I…" Edward winces, leaning forward to hold a hand to his head, "…had in mind." Pulling his palm away, Edward expects to see blood for all that his head pounds. "Why do I feel like I've been dropped on my head?" Blue eyes turn accusingly towards Teodoro, then squint out of focus, a hand now padding at the front of his shirt where eyeglasses are unfortunately missing.

It's only now that Edward notices the susurrus of rain pattering down on the windshield, his eyes moving to look at the glow of neon signs distorted by the sheet of water cascading down the glass, then back to Teo with an incredulous look. "I didn't admittedly think you would be the one to do this. I had an idea, but— unconsciousness more than consciousness… it… uh…" Shaking his head, Edward waves a dismissive hand in Teo's direction, still too cobwebbed to put words properly together. "Thank you… at the very least."

"Your analogue thought I could do it too." The seatbelt finishes tapering back into its spring-coil. Teo smiles a little, uses his eyes as well as his mouth, though it's faintly restrained, tensed around the edges: there's a lot of headache going around tonight. It doesn't altogether surprise him that Edward can recognize what he'd ordered even if it's apparently shown up in slightly different wrapping. There's a beat's pause. "Not about dropping you on your head.

"The other thing." The door lock releases with a clunky thump of armored parts and he pushes it open, turns his head pulls himself out into the cold maw of weather. Edward's door is only another second before opening too, stripping his face of the shifting finger-paint of silhouetted rainwater in favor of a damp breath from the sky itself. Ghost peers downward, unbothered by the wet sluicing through his hair. "Come on. My boss should be all right with letting you stay here a little while.

"I hope prostitutes don't offend you," Ghost adds, politely, as if there were much in the way of other options, or Teodoro Laudani had ever answered to a boss in memorable history, or that the whores were the most offensive event to occur at the Happy Dagger.

Staring up at Teo, Edward's view of the Sicillian is backlit by one of the neon letters of the Happy Dagger's garish sign, giving the man an unfamiliar halo to match the unfamiliar face. "Your…" it's only now Edward notices the difference in lines and contours, recalls the different tone of voice, hesitantly reaching out for the side of the door as he shakily pushes himself up onto prickling feet, trying to shake off the sensation of one foot that has fallen asleep.

"That isn't the most flattering masquerade," Edward finally puts the proper words together, eyes narrowing again as rainwater beads down his forehead and mats his hair to his scalp. "You brought me to a brothel?" Large, blue eyes divert back to Teo with a cant of his head. "I'll admit this isn't exactly the avenue of escape I— " his head quirks to the side, as if his attention was caught by something else. Lips press together, jaw sets, and Edward's eyes dart back down to the repurposed face of a man he once knew. "Why do you work for this person?"

Rasping one backward step and a half, Ghost lets the older man out, gives him enough room to find his footing. He squints up into the bleak churning of the weather, slides a hand to shunt the door shut once Edward is out of range to have his pins-and-needlesed parts accidentally bitten off by the arc. "It's like using a minnow trap bait to catch bass.

"Or attaching a radio collar to a wolf and setting it off on new territory to estudyxamine the group dynamics and behaviors through him. Metaphors aside, I'm trying to get him to move," he says, swerving a glance up at the squatting shape of the Happy Dagger over the neon-washed asphalt. His voice drops a note or three, grates annoyance: that hasn't been going so well, apparently. "So I can follow him around at Linderman's.

"Also, I need income to fund my demolitions habit." Ghost hikes his eyebrows slightly. Is rewarded by a second lance of pain through his temples, physical advisement that he take it easier on the unconditioned neural circuitry of the body he's stuck with, here. It's distracting; stops him from trying any harder than he's already grudgingly hacking at, to perpetuate the illusion that Teodoro Laudani is as he should be. "It'll do for a night, surely? I mean, who the fuck would think to find you here, after all?" He sweeps his arm, ends his hand open-ended at the base of the rusted fire escape that provides backdoor ingress to the second floor. Directly below that, of course, is the gate to the Dagger's equivalent of the hallway.

Which would be the part that Edward is supposed to pragmatically ignore. Quieter, then, the ghost finally abandons levity in favor of a reasoning sort of plea: "I know we have a lot of things to talk about." Inside is better.

Swallowing dryly, Edward looks up to the neon sign under pressure of rain, and then reaches up where glasses should rest, pinching the bridge of his nose as he nods his head. "Yes, yes I suppose this— this is the last place anyone would look for me." A faint smile is afforded to the fresh-faced Laudani. "And I suppose there is a bit to talk about, isn't there?" One faintly visible brow rises up slowly as Edward moves past Ghost, headed towards the establishment's front door with a visible limp, more than should be afforded from just a sleepy foot.

Halfway to the door, Edward turns around and looks back at Ghost, watching him uncertainly, watching for something. It's hard to tell if Edward found what he was looking for, but as he turns back to the door and opens his way into the Happy Dagger, letting the twanging notes ot sitar music spill out onto the streets, his posture changes from bashful mathematician to something a bit more surly. At least, surly for a man of his stature.

At this hour, business it winding down. The bar is abandoned of a tender, and the crowd has thinned to near nothing save for a couple of men still sprawled, here and there, in the laps of luxury, or with luxury in their lap in the shape of working women. It's this that Edward is brought through, the air of closing-time in the dimness of the lights and the way a woman dressed a little too modestly to be a prostitute is cleaning up abandoned glasses from the tables dotting the area.

Laudani will know the discreet passageways that will lead Ray to rooms a little more quiet or at least a little less colourful, but he doesn't quite make it that far before the sounds of direct footsteps herald the attention being steered there way.

"Teo?" The tone of Logan's voice might incite feelings of being caught in some ways, as rebuking as it might be questioning. Escaping the light of the red spiral staircase that he'd been working his way down, Logan moves closer enough to track his pale green gaze from Edward, towards the man whose face had changed at least once since he was first hired.

"We're an hour off closing the doors, you know, unless you plan to cart him out yourself when he's done," the pimp mistakenly points out, dressed as only he can be in a black waist coat and matching slacks, the satin shirt beneath it open at the colour and confused colours beneath the equally confused lighting of the brothel. It would probably be accurate and fair to say that he's been drinking, as is the case when the clock pushes this hour.

By now, Teodoro has finished making his inquisitive and commensurately pointless study of Edward's hackles. He's also following, had started doing some of that steering that was briefly touched upon, but the sound of the pimp's arrival brings him pause. Turns his head, adds another layer of polite veneer to the shiny foundation that still remains inculcated in him by his mother since childhood.

Excepting ill-conceived forays into the sticky crude of hooliganism and paramilitary operations around the corners. Ghost smiles. "Buona sera, Logan. This is Edward. Edward," he swivels to square his back against the wall, gestures between the formerly mousy-mathematician and the peacock pimp. "Edward's a friend of mine.

"Do you mind if he stays in one of the rooms for a little while?" However technically unnecessary, Ghost makes it a question, installs his hands in his pockets; tries not to blink too hard as the warping luminescence from the stage fizzles out into blissful darkness. He's sure one of the girls must have a bottle of Advil lying around somewhere. Just a few more fucking mintes— "I should be able to pay for it."

"I would really love it if I could get a drink too, if one of you could manage that?" Edward takes something of a tone in regards to his situation, glancing between Logan and Teo before limping over to lean against the bar, eyes flitting from one woman to another, then to the lingering clientelle before resettling on Logan again. "Edward Ray," he notes with a confident — if not somewhat bobbling — nod of his head, "it's a ah, surprise to meet you." Something about the tone afforded to Logan indicates Edward has a passing familiarity with the man, but the level of scrutiny he seems to be giving him is indicative that it isn't a great familiarity.

Turning to Teo, Edward squints, trying to make out the shape of his face sans glasses and with a throbbing migraine in its place. "As much as I appreciate the offer of staying here the night, wouldn't it be a bit more prudent to— " he hesitates, then looks askance at the bar, "no, perhaps it wouldn't be more prudent to visit miss Dean." An intentional name drop or a slip si hard to say, Edward does seem a bit off of his game.

The question of a room— especially one that's paid for— doesn't seem to irritate the brothel owner, satin clad shoulders coming up in the beginnings of a shrug before his attention veers back towards Ray, green eyed gaze going up, going down, and wondering a little if he could clash with the decor a little less, perhaps. "Logan," he introduces himself, firm confirmation, the familiarity seen in Edward as vague as it is a little off-putting.

There's the sound of clinking glasses as the woman who'd been tidying rounds the bar to put things away, copper hair coiled into an artful bun at the back of her head, her blouse low cut and her skirt short, but practically modest in this setting. "Viv," Logan says, stepping to rap his knuckles against the bar to gain her attention. The older woman glances back at him with a weary eyebrow raise. "A drink for the gentleman, on Teo?"

He's nothing if not a good host, and all. Viv lets out a sigh but ultimately smiles at Edward, eyelids hooding a little as she picks up one of the cleaner glasses, rolling it around in her long fingered hand. "What can I get you?"

Logan, meanwhile, has deviating his eyes back on over to Ghost, some question there, and more so after Edward's asked the man his own.

It's odd to think he looks olderthan Edward right now when he's precisely the same age, and either of the other man have reasonable stake to believe, still, that he's the infant of the trio. Thinking about that is actually worsening his headache; he decides not to, after a moment. It will balance out somewhere: the half-truths, mix of identities, temporally dislocated facts. The lie is a convenient truth. He's Teo, but he isn't Teo.

Either way, he can get anybody in touch with Helena Dean if she'll deign to meet them, and the dropped name lands on an odd angle that he tries to study for all of two seconds before dispelling his interest with a lazy blink of eyes, like an irritable raptor growing drowsy under the sun. "You can see or do whomever you want." Everybody else takes liberties, apparently. A pallid eye turns at Logan for a moment, but he returns his attention to Edward again before finishing: "I'd just appreciate a few minutes of your time when you can spare them to talk."

"Scotch, no ice." Edward states rather blankly to the woman Logan had directed to him, only a heartbeat later raising a hand in consideration, "Actually — can I get some ice," he cups his hands together, folding one over the other, "inside of a small towel?" Edward raises one brow, managing a hesitant smile, then turns to look at the door to the brothel, eyes widening despite nothing happening there. He shifts from his seat at the bar, getting up to move down two stools, and turns his back on Teodoro and Logan entirely.

Roughly two minutes later, the front door opens to expel a man of small stature and slight frame dressed entirely in different textures of black — cotton and silk — wearing sunglasses at night that are smoothly withdrawn from his face, folded and slid into his breast pocket. Revealed eyes a chocolate-brown color survey the sparsely populated bar, followed by the click-clack of hard soled shoes on the floor as a meandering path between tables is taken, then clearly out of place guest tucks a hand into one pocket.

Were Eloni not upstairs, he'd recognize the pitted countenance of Feng Daiyu from several weeks prior, when he beat in the head of Kain Zarek and managed to make short work of two Triad leaders inside of John Logan's establishment. There's no small coincidence in his path leading in the vicinity of the proprieter of the dagger, not considering what he's looking for.

"John Logan?" Only his mother calls him John. Though the accent speaking is it decidedly stilted with Chinese, rather than that of Logan's poor mum.

The sound of his own name certainly gets Logan's reasonably hazy attention, having been staring in some bafflement at Edward's turned back before dismissing the older man entirely in favour of looking towards the accented source. A look towards Teo, that communicates, you deal with your guest, adding, "he can have a room if he wants it, you are paying," and the pimp is then taking his weight off the bar. He meets the man some of the way with a few lazy, unhurried paces, green eyes glancing around the stranger's shoulder as if to expect some sort of signal from security.

Nothing comes of it, though. "Depends on who's asking," Logan says, voice curt and yanked up into the echelons of arrogant upper class English. "Who're you?"

"An assortment of dead white men," Feng states palinly, producing a roll of green bills from inside of his black jacket, tossing it down onto the table near where John stands. "I'm looking for someone, and you know everyone, or so a red bird told me." There's a flash of teeth too white to be anyone who lives around here. A gloved hand moves into a different pocket in Feng's jacket, producing a crumpled old black and white photograph torn in half.

It's turned around between two leather-clad fingers, offered out to Logan. Even from here, he recognizes the pain in the ass depicted therein. With arms folded across his chest and a Russian tank behind him, Ethan Holden looks roughly five years younger but not a hair more on his head, nor did whatever span of time that took place between the taking of the photograph and when John Logan last saw him do anything to soften his demeanor. Curiously, someone has their arm around Ethan in the picture, but the identifying half has been torn off.

"I'm looking for him — Holden — and I was told he worked for an associate of yours at your cage fights." Feng's eyes drift from Logan to Teo, then back to the owner of the Dagger. "I want to know what you know about him, and anyone else who might know him or where he would be." At the bar, Edward quietly accepts his scotch, downing half the glass quickly, watching the woman expectantly for his ice and cloth.

It's odd how an English accent makes even perfectly factual statements of logic sound really bitchy. Ghost twists his mouth, leans his hip against the polished edge of the bar, moves his eyes away from the Viv's person and takes all of about three seconds studying the Chinese inquisition. There's a quizzical stoop of his brow, a shift through his paired boots; he dismisses both his employer and new friend out of his attention, and motions at physicist with one callused hand. "Wanna go upstairs?"

The money is more interesting than the photograph, Logan's hand wandering over towards it, although not picking it up, making no promises - simply and delicately using the tips of his fingers to see how much there is before he turns his attention towards the photograph, suspicion as thinly veiled as bitchiness is thinly veiled in accent.

Suspicion, and wariness - whether for himself or on behalf of Muldoon is anyone's guess. "An associate?" Logan asks, giving the photograph a once before looking up to Feng's face. "Sadly, you're mistaken. I don't have any associates to do with this man." Not any more, anyway. You know, not right this second.

Meanwhile, Viv raises her eyebrows at Edward and his expectant glance, before she's scooping out a handful of ice and fishing out a cloth from underneath the bar. Piling the cubes inside, she bunches the fabric over hand slides it over towards him. "That one's for free, but the next will cost you," is her sardonic comment.

Tilting his head to the side, Edward looks up to Teo, and his answer is formulated only in the shake of his head, "Oh, no I'm quite comfortable right here for the moment," Edward notes with a sip of his scotch, "You're probably going to want to hear all of this anyway." He adds after an additional moment of consideration before giving Teo a silent lok over the top of his glass of scotch.

"Ethan Holden." Feng holds out the photograph again. "He fought at the Pancratium under the monicker Wolf. I'm looking for him, and his daughter," Feng's eyes narrow as he takes a step forward toward Logan, voice lowering just a touch. "Eileen Ruskin." One of Kazimir Volken's most important tenents of the Vanguard, that the right hand never know what the left was doing. Though at times, it may have seemed like individual fingers of the Vanguard had no idea that other digits were even on the same hand.

It takes the ghost until now to remember that Ethan Holden is not yet dead and irrelevant dust in 2009. Of course, he's known for awhile that Eileen Ruskin is not: it's been a thorn in his conscious and sometimes even a pernicious burr working through the membraneous stuff of her dreams.

Abruptly, the forty-year-old stranger is paying attention to the photograph in Feng's hand, his head stooped, eyes narrow, an abrupt attenuation of the energy and air around him, ambient restlessness and distraction refined to a point. Possibly, it could pass for auditory recognition of the Wolf's reputation around the Rookery. After all, it isn't every day that a non-Evolved man defeats the magnificent Sylar in single combat.

Wordlessly, the ghost closes his hand over the bundled terrycloth and ice, lifts it off the bar. Offers it sidelong at Edward.

Those two final words out Feng's mouth, now, that's interesting. "His daughter," Logan states, with unabashed interest, ignoring the photograph in favour of studying the other man for anything to read off his expression. Incidently, there isn't much at all, not even a digest version of emotions. Not that he's all that fantastic at reading people in the first place. He doesn't think to glance back at Ghost, either - despite the occasional drop of the name Teo in address, he's pretty sure his employee is not Laudani, now, and so assumes Eileen holds no interest aside from fractures of once borrowed memory.

"Alright. I'll tell you about them if you tell me what you want with them," Logan decides, chin lifting and head tilted. "They in some sort of trouble, are they? You're looking to help them or something?" He's hoping the answer is no and certainly wary of it being yes.

Edward just shakes his head slowly when offered the ice, taking another considerative sip of his scotch, eyes focused over on the bottles behind the bar, shoulders slouching as he leans forward and purses his lips, looking down at his reflection in the amber liquid within. "I'm planning on killing them both." Feng states flatly, looking down to the table he had deposited the roll of money onto, then back up to Logan. "I hope that arrangement doesn't change things, between you and I?"

There's something about Feng's posture, the way he carries himself and the way he phrases sentences that has the same side-to-side quality a cobra does before it strikes, an uneven cadence to his words of an up and down inflection, coupled with a very subtle sqay of his shoulders when he speaks, all fluid, very smooth; distinctive.

The baggied ice in Ghost's hand is unceremoniously applied to his own forehead. He squints at Feng from underneath the bulge of terrycloth, listens to the way he talks. After a moment's breathing, he reaches up to scuff the side of hand underneath his nose. It comes away with dried blood streaked on his skin and he drops his eyes to study the dark flakes sticking irregularly to the webbing between thumb and forefinger there, before pushing his nose up into a creased, faintly porcine grimace. It isn't the paragon of social graces, but it makes his face and airways feel a little less stiff.

Also has the side-effect of making him look like maybe he isn't fighting his brain through the process of sussing Feng out with about as much success as some pathetic mug with thunder thighs and an arm missing trying to do gymanstics. Federal Agency? Vanguard? Impractical prankster? The silk of Feng's means something, but he doesn't know what. He's left to hope that Logan's gossip is out of date and irrelevant.

Well then~!

Logan picks up the roll of cash, flicking his thumb over the edges as he considers his words. "Eileen Ruskin used to work at the clinic down the road, but not anymore. Couldn't hurt to check in on Filatov though, I suppose, and I doubt she's gotten far off Staten Island anyway," he begins, casually. "She's got a nasty little ability, something to do with making— old injuries go backwards. Recent development, that one. She was here for a while, actually, then made off with a man named Flint Deckard. That's D - E - C— actually, not sure, but if you find him, you'll probably get closer to her. Say hi from me when you do."

What else? Oh, right, the Wolf. Logan frowns a little, and shrugs, stating, "Holden broke out of the Pancratium a while ago. Last I heard, he was crossing the river, but who knows by now, right? I certainly don't."

One dark brow rises as Feng looks John up and down quickly, "That's…" Something doesn't quite track perfectly for Feng. "Old injuries?" His thoughts linger on that for a moment, followed by a hesitant nod as he folds his hands behind his back, looking over to the two at the bar quickly, then back to Logan. "Flint Deckard?" One eye narrows just a bit more than the other, and Feng's reaches up to retreive his sunglasses from the breast pocket of his jacket, unfolding the arms as he slides them on, pushing them up the bridge of his nose with one finger.

As he puts the photograph away, Feng withdraws another roll of money from within, tossing it up into the air at Logan for the man to catch. "I'll be sure to pass along the good word to Flint. That's twice he's burned me, I figure it's only fair to return the favor." Dark eyes peer through black lenses in Teo's direction, then back to Logan one last time. "You enjoy yourself."

While Feng is turning around and preparing to exit the bar, Edward looks up to Teo with a furrow of his brows before letting them both go up in a aren't you glad we didn't go upstairs face. Only now Edward finally moves off of his stool, watching Feng make his way towards the front door, "I think I'm ready for some rest, now." Blue eyes lift up to regard Teo uncertainly, "I take it you're going to need me for something?"

Yes. Only Ghost can't properly remember what it is right now, the original constellations of his thinking now spun completely out of view, leaving a different pattern, some other unexplored, glittery labyrinth glowering darkly downward out of the pith of infinite nothing. He doesn't really have enough hours in the day to follow through with this much adventurous spirit.

If it isn't one thing, it's another. He'd forgotten that this was what it was like, before everybody froze up, pristine, preserved in the ice-lock of Arthur's wintry status quo. In this time, there is still blood and sweat to wring out of people, watery lines and bad smells, enough rawness still left in the world to shape, and countless knives of innumerable shapes that intend to do it. He can't remember what that 'something' was.

It'll come. So he says, "Uh huh," anyway. Lifting the towel-wrapped ice off his rain-dampened head, he slings a step toward the staircase. "Right this way. Couple rooms just emptied out."

Ghost pauses when he remembers himself, and glances back at Logan. "That it?"

It's like Christmas. Logan's demeanor brightens as a second roll of money is tossed his way, smoothly catching it in one hand, turning it to inspect. "You too," he says to the man's retreating back, voice pleasant and jaunty, before he's turning back towards the two at the bar readying to make their departure, gaze catching on Ghost's at his departing question.

"No, actually," Logan says, with a curl of a smile at the corner of his mouth. Sex, booze, money and petty revenge apparently can work together to put him in an excellent mood as he continues with, "But we'll talk later, I suppose, wouldn't dream of keeping you."

He glances to Edward as he starts to step away, affords him a, "Nice to meet you, Mr. Ray. Ghost'll provide whatever it is you need, I'm sure."

A sardonic smile crosses Edward's face as he looks from John to Teo as the chime above the Happy Dagger's front door reports Feng's departure. "Well, that went better than the odds said," he glances to the stool he moved off of. "I was fairly certain he was going to put mister Logan's head through the bar." Edward shrugs, a crooked smile crossing his lips. "I'm still a bit groggy," he adds, as if in excuse.

Then, after a moment, his brows crease together and he looks up to Teo with an incredulous expression. "Ghost. Really? Was something less childish already taken?"

The squint of Ghost's eye from under the cold blob he's pushed up against his forehead implies that he suspects Edward was lying about something in that concatenation of sentences, but he doesn't pursue that train of thought aloud. At least they turned the fucking music off.

The only subwoofer clash in his head is in the strictest sense inside his head. He sets his foot upon the stair, drags himself up the red velvet layer-cake of the ascent at a much more sedate pace than that with which he had tackled Pinehearst's fire stairs. "It has more literary value and relevance than 'the Wolf,' okay?

"You know— I liked you better than the other one for a couple weeks because you didn't seem to be in the camp of 'one analogue must die,' but I'm beginning to see the merits of elder Ray's vision." It's a joke. A rather bloody-toothed one, but still only a joke. So many doors. Which one—? Ghost plugs his boot prints into the carpet, gets part-way into the process of venturing his projection through the rooms to check for vacancy, before remembering that merely remembering would hurt less, in this case.

In the end, he chooses right— insofar as he doesn't choose wrong. There's an absurd satin morass of a bed, mirrors on the ceiling. As in the parking lot, the ghost makes a gesture of welcome that is a few increments more grandiose than a whore's hospitality generally warrants.

There's something about the Happy Dagger, something about every single part of it that is so evocative of very base human desires presented in the most tasteless manner possible. Presented with this display, standing just in the doorway, Edward Ray's oly reaction is an upturning of his eyes in slow-motion to the mirrors on the ceiling, then down to the bed, lips parting slightly as if he wanted to just sigh. Instead, he murmurs out something just as tired sounding. "Oh, Teo," his eyes close, head shaking slowly, "you sure know how to treat a guy."

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