Tamara Brooks, Plumber


colette_icon.gif doyle_icon.gif quinn_icon.gif tamara_icon.gif

Scene Title Tamara Brooks, Plumber
Synopsis Doyle gets a little unexpected help in finding repairable problems at the Gun Hill apartments.
Date July 10, 2010

Gun Hill: Fourth Floor

The fourth floor of Gun Hill is practically pleasant this morning, the sun almost entirely hidden by patchy clouds, humidity dropped to a level which is tolerably sticky. It's a good day for getting up early, though of course that doesn't mean many people do — just those with work to address. The building's superintendent is one such, due to check all the rooms for damage and problems. Floor one, mostly occupied, passed inspection readily; but the intimations that the rest of the day isn't going to go so easily began with a stain on the kitchen ceiling of apartment 205. A little thing, to be sure, but — perhaps not so little when 305 shows similar signs beneath the white paint of its walls.

Like the two apartments immediately beneath it, 405 is not occupied: no resident, no furniture, not even very many cockroaches. After all, no occupant means a dearth of food crumbs to scavenge. Yet the door into this empty apartment is cracked ever so slightly ajar, allowing a glimpse of starkly cavernous white walls from the corridor. Just to one side of the doorway, tucked against the wall, are a pair of sandals that probably belong on someone's feet; whoever left them behind is not in immediate evidence, at least within the thin sliver of perspective the open door permits.

There's a heavy clip-board carried today in the hands of one Eric Doyle, apartment superintendant! He's actually proven to be fairly diligent and good at the task, at least the parts of it that don't involve people. He knows wood fairly well, and he's run his own business before, so the paperwork's no problem. Wyatt'd asked him for a list of what problems might need some working on, so he's been taking care of that all morning, and right now is pacing along towards the open door of 405.

Bray was supposed to be helping with his super-vision to spot any signs of mold or serious problems that normal eyes couldn't see, but he remembered something he 'had to do for Hailey' somewhere round the second floor and ditched on him. Kids these days.

Just one door down, the entrance to apartment 404 opens with a click of the doorknob and a squeak of old hinges. Laden heavy with a pair of white plastic trashbags stuffed full of laundry, it's hard to tell that Colette Nichols is actually under those heaps at all. Shouldering the door open, her boots scuff and squeak on the tile floor, a plastic-muffled grunt comes out from behind the trashbags and the jingle of a tag on collar rattles noisily at her ankles as a small puppy quietly comes darting out of the apartment between Colette's legs.

"Misty!" is the disapproving interjection as both laundry bags are dropped with plastic slaps to the floor, and Colette's mismatched eyes follow Misty's progress with scrambling claws on tile towards Eric Doyle's feet. Silent barks come with just little huffing chomps of Misty's tiny mouth as she hops up and paws at one of Doyle's legs, her tail whipping back and forth excitedly.

"Sorry, Eric…" Colette grouses as she steps over the discarded bags of laundry, walking over to where Misty excitedly paws on Superintendant #1.

Some people are up early in the day simply because it's routine — in this case, Quinn's up simply because her usual work schedule typically demands it. The door to room 403 slides open quietly, the musician sliding out with little more than a notebook in hand and a pen behind her ear. She's not even looking where she's going until the door shuts a she hears Colette's apology mixed with the scurrying of the little pup.

"Oh, hey, guys!" The cheeriness almost sounds a little forced, a wave given to Eric and Colette with her free hand as she steps forward, eyes on Misty. "What a' you guys up to?" she asks curiously, first eyeing the plastic bags at Colette's door, then up Eric, head tilted.

"Whoa, whoa there, Misty…" A laugh tumbles past Eric's lips as he pauses, looking down at the excited dog tugging at his pant leg and hopping around him earlier, leaning down to reach a hand to ruffle for her ears and scratch along her neck, "…s'alright, 'lette. God damn…" He finally looks up, whistling, "How much laundry do you have, girl?"

Grimacing, Colette crouches down and sliding her hands around Misty's midsection and then hefts her over her shoulder, little tail smacking Colette in the side of the face unintentionally. Making an unbecoming noise, Colette wrenches her eyes shut and wrinkles her nose, hefting that puppy off of one shoulder and setting her down on the floor where she immediately proceeds to get distracted and run straight for Quinn, sniffing at her ankles and running around her in silently yipping circles.

Rubbing one hand at her cheek, Colette squints up at Doyle, one eye closed. "Oh uh, yeah it— three people's worth of laundry and well— we're a little lazy when it comes to actually doing that sorta' stuff. Sometimes Tamara does the laundry, sometimes there's just new clothes that show up without explanation…" Opening her blind eye and still rubbing one hand at her cheek, Colette glances at the door to 405 and then over to Quinn.

"Quinn, could you toss Misty back in the apartment and shut the door for me?" Because if Colette were to do it she'd probably dropkick the dog through the doorway right now.

"What's got you bein' all bigman on campus," Colette queries, motioning with that hand at her cheek to the clipboard Doyle's carrying. "Somebody stiff you on their rent, gonna' dispense puppet justice?" Okay, now she's just being teasing.

When Misty comes running over to her, Quinn looks more than a little excited, immediately dropping her notebook with a thud and dropping down to pet the puppy. She giggles as she scritches it's ears, giving Colette a bit of a disappointed look when her instructions are handed down. Ah, well, it's not her place to argue about someone else's pet.

Hefting Misty up into her arms, she iggles again as the puppy licks her face, Quinn watching Colette as she moves over to her apartment door. "I was going t' ask myself, was wondering if you lost a bet or somethin'," she remarks, pointing at the laundry bags for a quick moment before withdrawing in an effort to keep Misty from wriggling out of her grip. A few steps into Colette's room, and Misty is placed down and the door quickly closed behind her, preventing the pup from barrelling back out into the hall.

Door closed, Quinn sighs, smiling as she turns back to the others, an eye on Doyle. "When my old super came around all like that, it usually meant someone was in trouble. No one's messin' around on you, are they Jason?"

"Oh, yeah, that could— wait, who's Tamara?" Two plus two does not equal five, and that's not a name that Eric recognizes! Of course, there's so many teenaged girls in the building now it's doubtful anyone could keep them all straight. The pen of the clipboard is brought up to scratch behind his temple, then it's lifted in a waggle towards Quinn, "Hey, Quinn."

"— what? Oh, no, no, we just, we got a new handyman guy for a little while? And he wanted me to go around and get a list of what's broke."

"Oh yeah that— old guy, right?" Colette's so remarkably tactful, "I heard he's all motorcycle-y and stuff." Wrinkling her nose, she walks back over to where the laundry bags are discarded on the floor, considering hefting them back up but only manages a tired sigh before sitting down on one like some sort've makeshift beanbag chair. "I've been meanin' to talk to him 'bout some things, actually. Hardly ever 'round though after I picked up that… job…"

Colette's slowing cadence of speech comes with an askance look to Quinn and then back to Doyle again. "Why's the door to 405 open?" There's a furrow of Colette's brows on realizing that Doyle was headed to the apartment and not from it. "Lynette told us all the unrented places were supposed to stay locked for safety and stuff," pushing up off of her laundry heap chair with a crinkle of the plastic, Colette lifts one hand to rake back her dark bangs from her face.

"For that matter, has anyone seen Lance?" Colette's question comes with a squint of assumption. Where there's smoke, there's fire; where there's trouble, there's Lance.

Quinn shrugs at Colette, walking up behind Eric, curious as ever. "You need any help?" she asks, although this time it's mostly out of curiosity. "I was just gonna go sit on the roof, if I can actually be helpful…" At the mention of Lance, Quinn looks back at Colette with a cocked eyebrow. "I haven't heard a peep out of any of the kids lately. Always kind of worrisome, that is."

"Job?" As much as he might act a bit slow sometimes, Doyle's not that oblivious, his brow furrowing as he notices her pause in mid-word, following her glance then and straightening a little, about to say something else…

…but he is easily distracted sometimes. "Wait, what?" He looks back down to the clipboard, flipping through the pages in a rustling, "Huh. You're right, 405 isn't rented… weird." That concluded, he heads for the door, not noticing the sandals yet.

Walking up to the door gives a slightly different view of 405's interior, revealing that there is someone inside — or at least the feet to go with those sandals. Their owner lies stretched-out prone on the apartment's unadorned floor, arms folded under her chin, blonde hair fallen forward beside her face; she's dressed in a gray t-shirt and blue cutoff shorts. Tamara shifts her elbows under her as the trio check out the door, twisting to look back at them over her shoulder, smiling amiably. "Hello."

She doesn't seem to realize, or care, that she shouldn't be in here — and doesn't bother to explain how she opened the locked door, either.

"I do courier work for the Alley Cat a few blocks away now. Doin' bike courier stuff pretty much all day every day, helps with my uh— other— job…" Colette fires a side-long look over to Quinn after she stammers, realizing that she almost dropped the Ferrymen name again. Side-stepping that topic, Colette makes her way towards apartment 405 with Doyle. Brows furrowed and head cocked to the side, she only notices the sandals once she's practically up on the door itself, hesitating with a look of puzzled familiarity crossing her face briefly.

The sandals remind her that she forgot to answer Doyle's earlier question too. "Tamara's— uh— it— " Rising up on her toes to look over Eric's shoulder, Colette's dark brows furrow as she spots the blonde object of her own personal fascination sprawled out on the apartment floor. "She's— right… there."

On trying to decide who is more likely to surprise Colette with something strange, Tamara and Lance have been neck and neck lately. Today: score one point to Tamara.

A raised eyebrow is all Quinn offers Colette as she stammers and trails off yet again, followed by a shrug. From behind Doyle, Quinn peeks around, looking into the room as the door's opened, the Irish woman blinking several times in rapid succession. "Tamara?" Quinn says questioningly, then she looks back up at Colette. "I thought you said the rooms stayed locked?"

Attention turned back to the apartment, Quinn slips in, looking around to see if, for some reason, Tamara had decided to break in. Not that she thinks she would, but she's more than a little confused otherwise.

Doyle's hand rests to the edge of the doorway as he leans to peer in, his brow furrowed a little as he notices the young woman laying there prone on the floor. A look back to Colette, then to Tamara, and he hesitantly waves with the clipboard, "Um. Hey." The mention from Quinn stirs his curiousity, a look to the door, then over, "Uh, how did you— I mean— get in?"

Nothing's broken, as it happens. Nothing's drawn on, discarded, taken apart for inspection, or otherwise seems to have been affected by the girl's intrusion — although, come to think of it, there is a slightly musty scent to the atmosphere in the closed-up apartment. Tamara blinks ingenuously up at Doyle, rearranging her limbs to where she's sitting on the floor, facing the three who've just entered from the hall. She frowns in thought, looking at the walls, the windows, the open door. "Through the door?" the girl finally hazards; it's at least an answer that makes sense in the grand scope of things. Blue eyes shift to Quinn, then Colette, her expression of bemused concentration clearing to one markedly more cheerful. "Hi! It's almost done. Then we could go with the clothes."

There's few things that makes Colette paranoid, but Tamara having a semblance of a plan for things wholly outside the bounds of needing a plan is one of them. Grimacing sheepishly, Colette slinks around Doyle's broad frame and further into the apartment, one hand gently touching the bigger man's arm to balance herself as she does, before looking warily around the apartment itself, more so than Tamara.

"Well it— it's cool you wanna' help out with the laundry," Colette admits with a sheepish smile, treading booted footfalls across the floor towards where the blonde sits, taking a knee beside her and looking up to Doyle, brows furrowed and smile apologetically expressing she does this sometimes.

"Um," mismatched eyes drift from Doyle back to Tamara, and Colette's smile turns a bit coy as she leans her head to the side and brushes a blonde lock of hair behind one of Tamara's ears. "What's almost done?" Because the only thing she can imagine right now, is that something is burning in an oven somewhere.

"Weird," Quinn intones, still looking around the room as Colette slips in. What Tamara says surprises her a little, for all she's heard, and for how their last conversations had gone, she seemed oddly on the up and up for once, which in and of itself was a pleasant surprise. Hands move to her hips, Quinn beginning to sway a bit as she looks around, before turning back to Doyle. "Sure the door wasn't, like, already unlocked when you got here? Maybe it's been unlocked and nobody really noticed, you know?"

"It could be," Doyle admits, stepping over to jiggle the knob with a rattling, "Hell, the lock might not even be working, there's a lot of stuff in this old place that needs work on…" It's what he's been up to all day, after all!

That checked, he looks back over to Tamara and Colette, his brows raising a little, "Is she, uh. Is she okay?" He lifts one hand near his mouth, making a 'drinky drinky' motion with both brows lifting querulously.

Tamara smiles brightly at Colette, but doesn't answer. Instead, she hops up to her feet, disregarding the speculation about the door's lock in favor of grabbing Doyle's hands and tugging him in the direction of the kitchen — much like any kid ten years younger than she actually is would do when they have something to show. "You can't hear anything over here. I'd say you could see it but you didn't; so you had to listen. It's not very loud, far away."

Not bothering to get up from where she kneels beside where Tamara was, Colette lifts up a hand to rub at her forehead, smiling awkwardly as she stares down at the floor. Slowly lifting her attention to Quinn, Colette affords her with a helpless shrug of her shoulders before turning focus over to where Doyle is being tugged to.

"This is perfectly normal for her," Colette notes with a wryness in her voice and a lopsided smile, "but you probably want to see whatever it is she's going to show you." Then, after a moment of consideration she adds, "or— maybe not, depending. Whatever it is she's gonna' show you, s'probably important…"

Or it could be a very colorful spider.

Or a shiny rock.

"Could be…" Colette corrects herself with a lopsided smile.

Quinn returns Colette's shrug with a laugh and a shake of her head. "See, now I'm curious," she says with another chuckle, following behind Colette and Doyle. Hands fall to her side, Quinn running a hand through her hair as she comes to a stop just outside the kitchen, leaning lazily against the wall. "Nothing too bad I hope, Jason?" she asks probingly, a smirk on her face as she waits to see what, exactly is revealed. "Maybe she made a cake!"


Doyle is, at least, used to being tugged around by children, so he responds fairly automatically in walking along after her, giving the other girls a bemused look. Then he looks back to her, his brow furrowing a bit, "Hear it? Some sort of… um… music, or something?"

Tamara leads Doyle over to the kitchen, coming to a stop right up beside the counter. She doesn't let go of his hands. "Ssh. Listen," the girl insists, before falling quiet. Unlike most children ten years younger, she is capable of standing still and quiet, closing her eyes to also listen — for all that she doesn't need to.


It's very faint, the sound, but not inaudible; attenuated by distance, as a little bit of water seeps down the outside of a pipe, forming drips at a bend which fall off to strike something below it inside the wall. Musical, perhaps; though most people consider the sound of water dripping to be anything but.

plik plop

Only now getting up off of the floor, Colette shoots a conspiratorial look to Quinn before meandering in the same path Doyle had taken into the kitchen, nose lifted as she sniffs at the air in search of the smell of something burning. Brows screwed up, she comes to a halt a few feet away from where Doyle and Tamara both do, her head slowly crooking to the side and dark hair falling from behind one ear to swish down and cover her blind eye with a ragged wall of bangs.

Giving her head a shake and those bangs a huff of breath, Colette pulls them away from her face while she looks back and forth between the two, unable to hear the dripping water at her distance, only to turn back and look at Quinn with a puzzled expression. Colette's dark brows shoot up to her hairline, shoulders rise in a shrug and she looks a bit lost to the secret shared between Tamara and Eric.

Quinn's head tilts again, watching Doyle and Tamara, and then Colette. An eyesbrow arches inquisitively, finger scratching her cheek. "So, uh… what is it? Or did I totally miss something?" Quinn questions, leaning forward a bit from her perch on the wall, trying to get a better look. When Colette looks back at her, she just shrugs in a mirror of Colette's own action. "You know, I think I got myself kinda excited about cake," she remarks somewhat randomly. "Now I really wish that's what it was."

Listen? Alright, then. Doyle listens, his features screwed up in a grimace of concentration as he tries to hear what sound it is that she's bringing to his attention.

Then he hears it.

He blinks up— pulling a hand from hers to touch the wall, frowning at it as he cocks his head. As he hears it again, his frown deepens. "A leak…?"

"It's all crawling down," Tamara informs Doyle, once realization seems to have set in for the superintendent. Reaching out, she walks her fingers down the wall as if in imitation of that statement. "Not here-here, but close. And maybe that's what it's supposed to do, but it's not where you want it to be." The blonde wrinkles her nose in a distasteful grimace. "'Sides, if it's left loose long enough things started to smell icky. No one wanted that." Releasing his other hand, the girl takes a step back, then smiles up at the puppeteer. "But now it can't, right?"


Colette's expression says it all as she listens to Tamara without the proper context. Brows furrowing together, the young woman creeps across the apartment to close the distance between herself and Tamara, looking back for a moment to Quinn just to gauge her own reactions. It's only on pulling closer that Colette hears something; distant, wet, noisy.


Mismatched eyes blink repeatedly and Colette's attention shifts over to the direction of the sound — which is admittedly the wrong direction given how sounds echo in the apartment — and then back to Tamara and Doyle. "Tamara Brooks," Colette comments wryly, "plumber." There's a snorted laugh and a smile as she shakes her head, looking over to Doyle with both of her brows lifted in a see what I mean expression.

Plik plok.

"A leak? For real? That is a disappointment." Quinn pushes away from the wall, making her way over to where everyone else now stands, a bit back as to avoid cramping anyone. "Well, at least it makes your job a right bit easier, doesn't it?" the Irishwoman remarks, elbowing Doyle playfully. "Nice job, Tamara!" A nod to go along with it, Quinn's hands returning to her hips, for lack of pockets to slip them into. She gives the other woman a thumbs up, smiling warmly.

A wry smile curves itself to Doyle's lips as he leans back to straighten, reaching out to try and ruffle Tamara's hair affectionately. "No… no, now it can't. Good job, kiddo. How'd you spot that, you got super-ears or something?" He hefts up the clipboard, pen pulled off as he starts scribbling down a note about the leak.

"Washer," Tamara disagrees to Colette, which may or may not have any actual relationship to the laundry waiting outside. She giggles at the ruffle to her hair, peering sidelong up at the puppeteer with a grin. "Something like that!" the girl agrees. "It was kinda noisy. Nice to watch, though; very slow shadows." Skipping back a couple of steps, she plants a hand on Colette's shoulder and leans against her, smiling back at Quinn.

"…Washer," Colette corrects herself with a furrow of her brows and a lopsided smile. "I— guess." Lifting up a hand to rest on Tamara's, Colette shakes her head slowly and breathes out a slow, steady exhalation that turns into a breathy laugh as she squeezes Tamara's hand gently. "Which I guess means she's going to help clean my laundry," is offered with an askance look to the seer and a crooked smile. Though fleeting as the look is, the smile isn't, and it remains on Colette's lips even as she turns her attention over towards Eric.

"Tamara sees things," she explains in as general a way as possible. With most people, Colette would probably be cagey on explaining abilities and powers, but Tamara is an open book in that regard. Unfortunately she's an open book in a language Colette can't reliably read.

"She sees… everything. It's hard to explain, but it's everything happening all at once, I guess…" Half-blinded eyes divert to Quinn at that, and Colette's expression turns softer. "That's why she is the way she is," and that sentiment has Colette looking back to Tamara with a smile, implying without so many words that she wouldn't have her any other way… even if it's tempting to dream about sometimes.

Quinn gives a thoughtful look to Colette, and then down to Tamara. "I… did not know that," she says, the surprise rather evident in her voice. "I just kinda — " She immediately stops, clamping her mouth shut in an effort not to say something incredibly rude. "Man, seeing everything? I think I'd just kind of be confused all the time if — " And she stops again, laughing nervously. "I had been wondering," Quinn states simply this time, and then she shrugs. "But whatever. She's fun either way."

At the giggle and the grin up at him, Doyle can't help but smile; looking back to the wall, he leans over to scribble a rough 'x' on the wall closest to where he can hear the leak, adding another quick note to the clip-board and letting the pages leaf back into place. That done, he turns to listen to Colette… and then he looks to Tamara, eyes widening a little.

"Oh." It's better than the 'Oh god, you poor thing' that he almost broke out with.

He clears his throat, then, and flashes a smile. "Well. After I finish up with the next floor— you, uh, why don't we get all the kids together and order pizza? Or I can go grab some KFC buckets…"

Tamara ruffles Colette's hair in turn with her free hand, then pries the other out from beneath the photokinetic's grasp and backpedals away from the little group. "The bags needed to walk," she tells Colette. "They're making the hall uncomfortable." The girl pauses and looks at Quinn a moment, smiling slowly. "It's okay, really." She transfers the smile to Doyle, chuckling quietly in a good-humored fashion, then waves at all three of them. Scooping up her sandals in passing, Tamara slips back out the apartment door.

"You heard the lady," Colette admits with a wag of her brows as she leans in the direction Tamara left in, then gives a stumbling series of steps that way, as if being tugged by some unseen leash, smiling all the while. "I need to go make the— hall— comfortable?" There's a crooked cast to Colette's smile at that as she slips past Doyle and Quinn, soon walking backwards with her hands folded behind her head and gait slow and lazy.

"I won't be back for a little bit," Colette admits with a smirk, "but save me some pizza or some chicken, dependin' on what you get. I left 404 unlocked, so you can put it in the fridge for me if you want just— be careful of lettin' Misty out, an' don't mind Jupiter… if he even wakes up and notices you come in."

On reaching the apartment door, Colette offers an askance look to Tamara and her expression changes some. Gone is the mischievous humor, but rather in its place is something more inscrutable, an expression that has a smile but one of questionable content. Gone is her ability to be easily read, and in its place something more Mona Lisa.

"I'm comin', I'm comin'," Colette playfully grouses, letting the mask of a more honest smile slide back on her face as she strides out of the apartment and away from the noise that the sybil had alerted Doyle to.


Hopefully between the puppetmaster and the cowboy, they have enough errant handyman skills to fix whatever's behind that wall. Even Noah's flood had to start somewhere, after all.

Plik Plop

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