That's A Very Mature Standpoint


joanna_icon.gif vincent_icon.gif

Scene Title That's A Very Mature Standpoint
Synopsis Joanna relays to Vincent about their daughter's activity, who in turn tells her to talk to their daughter.
Date June 8, 2010

Upscale Steakhouse


Dinner's been quiet.

It usually is, these days.

But recent events being what they are, for all that it seems like there should be more to talk about, Vincent is feeling a lot less inclined to try. Granted, they didn't talk much at the Corinthian either. And they were living together.

Steak and sushi houses in Greenwich are common, but this is one of the more expensive ones. Also one of the first to re-open.

Antique lamps glance red-orange light across rich wood and fine plates, dissected tuna and salmon set out like miniature pieces of modern art in rice and seaweed and roe.

Dressed somberly and sinisterly as ever in a matte black suit with a tie striped by pyrite and tin, on his side of the table, Lazzaro is deeply involved in sawing through a piece of steak. Sake rests so far untouched at his elbow.

Occasionally his phone buzzes audibly in his pocket and he's polite enough to pretend like he's ignoring it between frequent trips outside or to the men's room to smoke or piss. But mainly to check his messages.

If he abandoned her for work during one of the few times in which they still get together to discuss things that others might discuss with a large conference table and a squadron of lawyers flanking them, she might just get really upset. Vincent may dine on steak, but Joanna was going the surf route.

Chopsticks in hand, they dart to and fro, picking up a tuna roll, California roll, raw fish wrapped, stuffed, rolled around rice and other bits of decoratively arranged food till it's almost like stained glass at times. black sheath, black shoes, hair back and up as per the atmosphere of where they had agreed to meet up, she's enjoying her meal and sharing the few words with him.

"I met Colette. I don't know if you've met her. She's the girl that Tasha's become infatuated with. Sharing socks with" Literally and euphemistically. "She was staying out at an orphanage on Staten Island called the Lighthouse. Met her there"

Infatuated. Sharing socks.

Vincent looks tired enough tonight that the way he defaults to a sluggish bovine-on-cud chew, looks up from his plate and mildly inquires, "…Sorry?" all come again may well be attributed to legitimate misunderstanding. His black eyes are hazy with sleep debt, mud stirred off the bottom to murk drowsily at obsidian edges. The kind of fractures it'd take someone who knows him to notice.

Because outwardly, his expression doesn't change. He doesn't even lift his brows, knife in one hand, fork in the other.

"You need to keep moving your hands Vincent. When your blindsided by something, you stop whatever you're doing with your hands. You're face is unreadable, but your hands" Joanna shakes her head, tuna roll put down and really looking at him.

"Our daughter, is having relations with another woman. This is not some small one time thing I think. Met her through some support group, network for people who have been through things like she went through. She called them Ferry. She was bringing an orphaned boy from Boston to new york, that's how she decided to come back and stay"

Her own sake is lifted, tilted and a sip consumed. "Local chapter is run by some… pastor Sumter"

The scarred back of his right hand flexed somewhat self-consciously around the knife, Vincent rolls his eyes subtly away and tips his brows up in resigned concession to her point. He takes a moment to readjust his grip on the fork as well, stubble-dusted jaw flexed, clamped and released now that the jig's up anyway.

Then he's unreadable again. Utterly, seeing as he's taken his ex's advice and gone formally back to the process of cutting his slab of cow into bite-sized pieces.

His phone buzzes.

He ignores it.


"Good for her," he says finally, stainless steel scraping ceramic. Not looking at her. "Hopefully she's better at it than we were."

"We were good at it Vincent. In the beginning. It was the middle and the end that we just couldn't handle. We evolved, and we changed. I can only hope that if they break up, that they can manage to remain on friendly terms that we've managed to do and be adult about it" In as much as their bouts of stony silence had been adult.

"Has she apologized to you yet for what she said over the phone?" A glance shows that no ones looking and she reaches over, stabbing a piece of cow he'd just cubed, darting it back over to her plate. It's quickly exchanged for something from her plate. One for one. "Do you know anything about this.. Ferry? She said that there were some rumors out and about, about it. It's not some cult is it? Because if it's a cult Vincent, I won't stand for it and I'll forcibly take her from them. So far, I haven't come across anything about them"

"That's very mature standpoint for you to take." That Vincent manages to make it sound a little like an insult probably isn't all that surprising despite the fact that he never looks up and his tone never changes. There is no reaction for the fish for red meat exchange; he forks into the piece of roll next and turns it up into his mouth as if it'd been there all along. Part of a naturally ongoing symbiosis, evidently.

"She did," comes next, equally as mild in a kind of unimpressed or otherwise disaffected way. She apologized. Whether or not he feels anything accordingly is difficult to discern; this time he doesn't stop moving his hands. Or chewing. "It's not a cult."

"I'm a mature woman." lips pursed and chin lifting just a little higher as if to say yes, yes I am taking a mature standpoint you prick. "So you've heard of them? Of course you have, you hear of everything. It's your job to. Tell me about them? Is it something that I should get involved with, maybe something that you should get involved with. Maybe it will help with the gap between you and her. A common ground and common interest even if it has to be a feigned interest"

"You are," agreed without tremendous feeling, Vincent gives her a lazily cynical glance on his way to exchanging knife for sake. There's a calculated smoothness to the movement. Reach and grasp, lift and tip. Deep breath, and he releases the fork as well to scratch at his nose on his way to tipping out another round from the jar left conveniently at their table. Like he had a premonition they might need it or something. "I don't think that would be a very good idea, actually."

"Would that be in reference to me helping my daughter out with this support group that you have presumably checked out and said is not a cult, to that you don't think it would be a good idea to offer to join her, bond with her in whatever little spare time you have. Really victor, you are so short worded sometimes, it's as if you have this quota that you have for words, and if you should hit that quota, the world will explode. it's okay to elaborate at time. I'm not one of your interogatee's"

Her own cup is pushed wordlessly forward with the tips of her chop sticks.

"Our daughter."

This reminded more firmly than he probably intends even as he reaches to accommodate her silent request for sake, the government agent across the table summons a harder stare for the verbal misstep. Timely proof, really, that concision reduces opportunity for mistakes. Though he doesn't say so. He probably doesn't have to.

It's some time before he says anything else or even looks like he wants to, sake tipped off for each of them in the interim.

"I think it's something you should talk to her about."

our daughter. She hadn't realized she'd said my instead of our. Stuck on saying your and my, usually so much better at choosing her words after a lifetime so far of choosing them very carefully so that she can sway a judge or juror.

"Our daughter. I'm sorry"

"Which is Vincent speak for things are not what they seem and seeing as she lied to me the first round, it begs the question of what is she lying about this time" Now it's her turn to stare at him with pursed lips.

"It's fine," says Vincent, and it even sounds like it might be even though it clearly isn't. Theoretically he has larger and more terrible problems to fret over. Also, his Blackberry is vibrating again.

He sighs — something he doesn't do all that often in the here and now, wherein he isn't allowed to be exasperated or otherwise worn out — and reaches for his water, wedge of lemon wrung out into it seeds and all before he takes a sip. "You should talk to her," is repeated at a level monotone. "She won't listen to me."

"I cry bullshit at that Vincent." But that he's insisting she talk to Tasha, it means there is something off and there's a strange quality to her eyes and the arrangement of her features. Had her daughter bold faced lied to her again?

"I'll talk to her" Sake cup taken up again by the lacquered finger tips. "If you don't answer it Vincent, they are just going to walk in the front door and come to our table. Besides, it's time for another smoke isn't it?"

It is a strange quality, isn't it? Strange enough that Vincent's being avoidant in his own sleepless, crude oil murk, lacking the necessary resolve to keep the world from falling apart and to stop his ex-wife from being terrifying to their daughter.

Who probably deserves it anyway.

All told.

Resignation wins over again while he draws his napkin from his lap and deposits it next to his plate, right hand already touching automatically after the interior of his jacket as he pushes back from the table. "I'll try to keep it short."

"I'm sure you will. I'll get dessert ordered while you're out there. Should be ready to be served by the time you come back and finish your meal Vincent. Then we can talk about whatever else we need or desire to talk about. If that's Secretary Praeger, tell him thank you, for his hospitality, that it was a pleasure to meet him" Likely not Praeger. But you never knew.

And like that, she's tapping ornate chopsticks against her plate as she decides what next to devour while also thinking about when to corner her daughter.


More agreeable than usual (and probably more agreeable than he should be, for that matter) Vincent disembarks at a walk that betrays no urgency on his way for the door.

His cell phone is out and at his ear before he gets there, though. C'est la vie.

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