The Bad Touch


deckard_icon.gif logan_icon.gif

Scene Title The Bad Touch
Synopsis Logan knows the way to Deckard's heart, but his taste in decor leaves something to be desired.
Date January 31, 2008

The Happy Dagger: Logan's Office

This place is office by name only - there certainly isn't a desk in sight, let alone a filing cabinet. It's decorated almost the same as any other room in terms of colours and decadence, with quality thrown in for good measure. The walls are painted a dark red with warmer golden trimmings, and layers of chiffon surround and cover the one window in the room so that only the lights of the outside world make hazy spots on the rich fabric. Hung upon the walls are paintings, likely expensive ones, depicting erotic scenarios and characters.

A couple of couches provide areas of comfort, some conventional, others more of the old Greco-Roman style designed to recline in rather than sit, and a small round coffee table with elaborate patterns etched into the wood boasts a perhaps ornamental hookah, although it's clearly seen use. The wooden floor is mostly covered by a large zebra striped rug, soft on bare feet and kept immaculate. An antique teatray is pushed into the corner, and holds a stunning array of fine liquor and crystal glasses. Next to it, an antique writing desk, although there's no chair near it and doesn't seem to hold anything, although the locked drawers may have purpose.

Despite it being called an office, this room seems more to cater to luxury and relaxation than business, although business occurs here regularly. Just not as much as pleasure.

"Make yourself comfortable, Mr. Deckard."

It's rather difficult not to make oneself comfortable in this room, at least physically. The furniture is plush and the lighting is faint and the sounds of music coming from down stairs is fairly muffled by the floor, although not quite. Despite this, it's so richly overdesigned as to be claustrophobic, despite the generous space, and the fact that the door is shut and the windows are covered can't help this illusion.

Logan stands by the tea tray by name only, pouring himself a helping of likely expensive gin into a chilled glass. His clothing is dark but professional, everything black from his tie to his shoes, a distinct contrast to the colourful nature of this building, perhaps deliberately. He glances over his shoulder at the other man, pale green eyes assessing before he offers a smile and asks, "Would you like a drink, then?" His accent is uppercrust English and less than sincerely so.

Mr. Deckard was under the impression they were headed to an office. This place seems to qualify by virtue only of being smaller than the main room, and less full of people.

There's an unease to the way he takes it in — the decadence and decoration as an extension of what exists on the other side of the door, with its low lighting and plush couches. No desk. Just the offer of alcohol, which he nods to. He's in a grey suit himself, saved from offensive levels of banality only by the vertical disruption of slender pinstriping. Tie lost somewhere in the course of the day, or maybe on his way in, he's down to the open collar of the white shirt beneath it. A few healing scrapes and cuts mark the bony ridge of brow and cheekbone on the right side of his face. Bruising colors the left. It's been a rough week.

"Whatever you're having is fine."

And another helping of gin that tastes both like poison (as gin is wont to do) as well as, more subtly, citrus. It's not entirely unpleasant. Logan passes the heavy crystal glass to the other man, then turns away, taking a long sip of his own alcohol before perching on one of the couches, a leg folding up to rest ankle to knee. Despite the fact they're alone in the room, the presence of others in this building is a continual reminder. The music, yes, but the sound of distant footsteps too, the occasional distant sound of the opening and shutting of doors.

"So I understand Zarek gave you my card," Logan says, gesturing for Deckard to take a seat opposite him, long fingered hand curling around his glass. It seems everyone involved in this part of town go by their last names. "Forgot I had cards. People make their own interesting ways here, I find, for all kinds of interesting purposes. What can I do for you?"

Having followed over near enough to take the offered glass, Deckard wrinkles his nose at the weight and design of it while Logan's turned away. In approximately the same span of turned shoulders, his eyes light into a more intensive sweep of the uniquely furnished office space, and probably more than a few of the things going on outside of it. A well-positioned security camera might make note of the associated eyeshine, but it's gone again well before Logan's gesture for him to sit.

Which he does, on a terrifying couch of his own. He clashes with it, all long lines and angles to its soft edges and comfortable sink, but he'd be lying if he said he'd rather stand. He's tired. His knee hurts. And this gin — which he sips with less caution than it probably deserves — tastes like poison. "Zarek mentioned that he was in need of a bookie for a side operation he's gotten involved in. Some kind of evolved fighting ring."

"Ah ha." Hard to pinpoint Logan's reaction - mostly familiarity and a ghost of an insincere smile, but also a little exasperation. This does, after all, benefit him only distantly, and he takes a slightly draining sip of the hard liquor, seeming undisturbed by the brutal taste and he sets the glass aside on the round coffee table. "Well yes, our little project going on down here in the Rookery could use several more helping hands." A sleek, silver cigarette case is taken out of the inner pocket of his jacket, a cigarette extracted and clenched between teeth as he sets about lazily hunting himself for a lighter. "Are you much of a gambling man then, Mr. Deckard?"

"No." He isn't. It's one of the only things he isn't, among the many things that he undeniably is. One of which is a smoker, as evidenced by the familiar travel of hand to suit coat interior after a lighter of his own. The butt of his gun hunches dull matte in its holster behind the flip lighter's extraction. After many a disenfectant scrubbing, it doesn't even smell like dead people anymore. Which is good, because he holds it up in offer, and that could of thing could really hurt a reputation that's already taken a few solid hits from the media.

"But I've been doing a lot of pro bono work lately and I am a man that could use an occasional wad of money under the table."

Logan's chin tips up in a slight and haughty nod of gratitude at the offer, abandoning his search in favour of taking Deckard's lighter and setting aflame the end of his cigarette. His head comes up again with a breath of thick smoke, tossing the item back to the other man. "Couldn't we all," he says, smoke curling out of his mouth between words, grabbing an ashtray to pull it closer to himself. "So either Zarek sent you to us because he doesn't like you much, or because you have the sense and the inclination not to go crying about what we do down here. What do you do, if I may ask?"

One of those possibilities seems likelier than the other. Deckard draws in a breath to reply, and…exhales without making good on the promise inherent in said breath. Telling in itself, maybe. He makes good on the breath that follows at least, gin lifted for one last long swallow before the glass is set near Logan's. "Last time we spoke, he had to have a couple of inbred monkey people with french manicures throw me in the back of a van to get me there."

Honesty is a policy. Whether or not it's a good one when dealing with Logan remains to be seen, but he seems comfortable enough in the admission once it's made and he's tucking his lighter away again. "I sell guns. And anything else people are inclined to pay me for."

A slightly compulsive, quiet chuckle is give in response to Deckard's admission - not because Logan thinks he's joking, rather the opposite, a much more sincere smile occurring if only out of amusement. Cigarette left to smolder and smoke between two fingers, his eyebrows then raise a little when Deckard gives his answer to his question. "Oh, really? Wonderful," he says, scratching his cleanshaven jaw contemplatively. Whatever is on his mind, however, is set aside, keeping the conversation on track. "Including your services as a bookie, I see. Well the man you will want to talk to— I'll point you to James Muldoon. Our manager I suppose. Does the bookkeeping and all kinds of undesirable deeds." Shrug, lifts his cigarette to draw another breath of smoke, sighs it out. "Paperwork. He'll get you set up. Although I don't suppose you want to see what we do first, do you?"

"I haven't been selling much, lately." Staying under the radar, being a wanted murderer makes advertising complicated, blah blah blah. Deckard risks a half smile in the wake of Logan's laugh, paired fingers pushed up against the bridge of his nose to fend off the headache threatening to resume its hold there. "James Muldoon, bookkeeper and overseer of undesirable deeds." That doesn't sound so bad. His hand falls again, and he settles an inch or two deeper into the couch, letting gin do its thing on top of whatever he already had before he even got here. "I guess that would probably be…a logical step. To take." Does he want to see? His line of eye contact goes a little sideways.

A wallet is taken out of some other pocket, a small metallic pen slipped from the center of it, along with a card. It's one of his that he apparently forgot about, and now Logan turns it over to write something down in small, neat handwriting. "I assure you, it's a spectacle," Logan says without looking up from his task, leaning over just a little too much, as if perhaps glasses would benefit him. He slouches, too. There's only so much affectation can do to mask everything about you.

He takes the little cardboard rectangle and holds it with a lazy flick of his wrist, and now his pale gaze on Deckard is somewhat judgmental and considering, as if he'd expected the man to leap at the opportunity to see Evolveds duke it out in a cage.

"It's a brutal game, you can imagine, but it wouldn't be nearly so thrilling if it wasn't. We're gaining quite the collection of participants."

The type of man Deckard is at heart aside, he doesn't look like he'll be leaping to see anything anytime soon. Not without a few good nights of rest, or the assistance of some kind of elaborate pully system. "Zarek asked that I should keep an eye open for potential recruits, but I leave that to your discretion. The last thing I want to do here is step on toes." Please god, don't make him step on anymore toes. Not for a couple of weeks, at least.

He watches Logan write without further comment, blue eyes squinted after the scratch of pen over cardstock. No telling where his glasses are, but it's likely he has a pair of his own somewhere or another.

The card is taken and examined with a distracted frown. Then it follows the lighter into his suit, to be retrieved in an environment with better lighting and less distraction. "Oh yeah? I'll admit, most of the shit I've seen has been pretty low key. Duplication, clinging to buildings. No firebreathing or laser vision." Unless you count Sylar. One eye sticks in its squint on that thought. Good times.

There's an address on the card, some anonymous hovel in the Rookery that might lead to the manager Logan speaks of, along with a phone number, and Logan ashes out his cigarette, letting it die a slow death in the ceramic ashtray. "By all means, if you see someone with something slightly more exciting by way of talents, do say," he says with a shrug of lean shoulders. "We do a good job of drawing them in. Recruitment or otherwise." A slightly sharky smile before a hand is offered - a very clean hand, but at least it's not manicured. "I hope you like what you see, Mr. Deckard. If not, well… perhaps we can talk alternate business. I'm rather good at making people untouchable for a few favours, and no offense," his gaze flicks over the evidence of Deckard's rough week, "but you seem like you could do with such."

"I guess you do." Not like there's any shortage of attractants in this place. Deckard glances around the room, line of sight echoing his line of thought with a brow lifted distinctly for the question of whether or not he'll like what he sees. He likes what he sees so far. If more outside than in here, and better in black and white.

It takes a turn in the conversation to draw his focus back onto Logan. A tip of his head acknowledges his current state, however passingly. "Just a few scrapes and bruises," dictated with a salesman's smile, he leans to take the offered hand without reservation. "Hardly the end of world."

"Best to act before the world ends, I find," Logan says with a fleeting chuckle. The handshake is brisk and serves its purpose - politeness, first and foremost, friendly professionalism. The other is the blooming of pleasantness that quite suddenly simmers through Deckard's nervous system. It's a gentle urging, not entirely abrupt or startling, and Logan certainly makes no other indication that he's doing as such. Perhaps he's just a nice guy. Who knows.

His hand withdraws, the feeling left behind remaining for the next several moments, and Logan gets to his feet, heading for the door with a jaunty stroll. "Now, the night is young and I've always found it best when business is mixed with pleasure. Leaves people coming back for more. Is there anyone I could offer you before you go?"

Deckard's handshake is likewise professional. Firmly so, even, in its polite brevity. It doesn't make Logan feel anything other than the calluses roughed into the pads of fingers and palm. Maybe a distant inkling that he doesn't know where the gun seller has been and he should probably wash his hands.

On the receiving end of blooming pleasantness, Flint hesitates. It's a physical thing more than a mental one. Good vibrations are rare visitors to his nervous system. Alien, even, outside of certain stimuli that needn't be described in detail here. There's a distracted knit in his brow and the ghost of a grin leftover from the whole automatic sales thing, but no suspicion. Logan's pretty a cool guy. eh shares booze and poon and doesn't afraid of anything.

"While I'm here I guess it wouldn't hurt to take a look at the menu." Not much point in beating around the bush when you're already in a brothel anyway.

Another short chuckle, which is drowned out somewhat as Logan opens the door, leading Deckard out, music from downstairs more of a presence than it was inside his office-by-name-only. It leads out into the hallway, less garishly decorated than the other rooms for the simple fact that there's no furniture - the walls are the same rich red and gold, the same low-lit feel. People drift through, mostly women who undoubtedly work here, one of which Logan catches by the arm to pull her close with a murmured instruction.

As his hand meets the bare skin of her arm, her eyelids hood a little, the stiffness in her back draining away, and with the slightest of nods, she moves towards Deckard. Blonde. Too much makeup, the right amount of perfume, and wearing jewelry as if pale skinned blondes had always come from Egypt. She takes his hand without a word.

Logan, meanwhile, backs up, and gives Deckard a brighter smile. "Let 'er show you around a bit," he says, voice sinking a little in class without much thought. "In whatever way you fancy. Don't be a stranger, Mr. Deckard." And he turns on his heel and heads for the spiral staircase downwards, leaving Deckard to his own devices. No one ever said the Rookery doesn't deliver.

The exchange of touch and instruction is observed at a slight remove, scientific curiosity getting the better of Deckard only for as long as it takes her to get to him. How does one become such a ludicrously successful pimp? Is it the limey accent? Is it the suit? The bad taste in furniture? Why does he fail at it so completely?

These questions and others become obsolete at the nearness of her. She smells nice. Toggles switch, he glances down after the brush of her hand against his, breathes in and…Christ, what was he thinking about again?

"I'll — I'll be in contact. About things." Things. Hazy-headed already, he blinks hard, decides he doesn't particularly care about sounding more literate at the moment, and lets her lead the way. Wherever she wants.

He's been here for less than an hour and he's already feeling less difficult than usual.


January 31st: To Do What's Right

Previously in this storyline…
Making the World Perfect Again

Next in this storyline…
Take Away Everything

January 31st: Just the Thing
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