To Near Misses


calvin_icon.gif delia_icon.gif

Scene Title To Near Misses
Synopsis "Serendipity" and Calvin find Delia in Brooklyn. But mostly Calvin.
Date March 08, 2011



Delia is giddy. Having arrived on the first boat to Red Hook, she dropped all of her things off at Nick's apartment (along with the dog) and set out for some birthday touristing. Twenty dollars, fake ID, registration card, and iPad placed into her backpack, she spent the entire afternoon just milling around looking for a cheap gift to buy herself.

"May you long for the days~ Trippin' down the long road~ Just readin' the signs that show you the way~" Her offkey singing is a little quiet, despite the earphones not allowing her to listen to herself. The redhead makes her way to a crosswalk, tapping on her thigh as she waits for the light to turn. It's closing in on curfew and she's a little ways from the place she's calling temporary home. The dog will need to be let out, Toru didn't seem so pleased to see it there in the first place but eh… it's not like she asked him to walk it.

When the little man lights up in white, she takes the first steps out onto the street before turning to go back, as though uncertain if she should just pass by the guy selling watches out of his coat. Hesitant, she idles a quarter way into the road before shaking her head and pivoting back to the direction she was originally headed.

Despite the little man who's lit up white, there's still oncoming traffic petering along at this hour. A taxi here, an unremarkably brown SUV there and one of those Cube things that look like they were designed by an alien who's only ever had a car described to them over the phone.

It's the last that turns out to be a problem.

Where the SUV and the taxi stop well back from the white-dashed crosswalk and associate light, headlights slowed cool yellow across concrete, The Cube swerves across two lanes. And accelerates. Straight for Delia.

An outside observer who isn't in a position where they are about to die might notice that the vehicle accelerates without a gun from the engine. They might notice rubber laid thick across the street, brakes screeching out shrill alarm and the hipster in the driver's side pale-faced with terror at the girl he's 5, 4, 3, 2 meters away from plowing through like a sack of cantalopes.

Except then there's a blur of long black coat and an arm locked warm 'round her waist, just the right mix between tackle and embrace to snare her over onto the sidewalk out've harms way. "Harms" way.

Harms way.

All told, from start to finish it's over in a heart beat. A near miss and heroic rescue that no one's really around to witness. The taxi and SUV driver's can't even be bothered to pull over and The Cube has screamed on around a corner, out of sight, leaving Calvin in his crest of ginger dreads and his eyeliner and his shiny shoes to breathe heavy at Delia's side, still holding her close. "You alright?"

I can blow bubbles with my butt! flash Higher daddy! Higher!! flash If I don't get those jeans my life is over!! flash Mom… please come home.. pleasepleasepleaseplease… flash I HATE YOU LUCILLE!! YOU RUIN EVERYTHING!! flash I don't want to be a freak… flash Yeah Daddy, as soon as I got here.

Tiny, insignificant moments of her life run through her mind at the speed of a deck of cards being shuffled in Atlantic City as Delia's blue eyes freeze on the hipster aiming straight for her. A rabbit caught in headlights, that nightmare where you can't run even though the monster is headed right for you, the redhead's feet are frozen to the ground as her jaw drops and she prepares the last sound she will ever utter.

A scream.

One that is halted by the sudden whoosh of breath escaping her lungs as she's pulled backward and into the arms of a stranger. A large gulp of air is taken in and she points shocked expression up to her savior. "Y-y.. you saved my life…" it's barely an audible whisper. Happy birthday.

"Yeh," says Calvin, who looks as (or more) dumbfounded by what just happened as she does, scruffy jaw slacked open and the whites of his eyes turned wide after smoke and hot rubber stink still drifting slow across the street. He smells a bit like warm iron himself, cigarette smoke and coffee fresh on his breath. Not far from her face — he's not more than an inch taller than she is when he shifts his focus to look her over next to him.

"Close one."

Almost like he was trying to hit her. Calvin's gingery brows hood down a touch accordingly, subtle curiosity left unclarified in the clear blue of his eyes. Not quite suspicion. Too polite for that. "I'm Calvin."

Still trying to catch her breath, Delia just nods dumbly in response to the introduction before blinking a few times and twitching what could be considered a shake of the head. Her long hair makes it a little more exaggerated than it's meant to be and she finishes it with a nod. "Delia…" she breathes before sucking in a long breath of air and biting down hard on her lower lip to mask the grimace on her face. "I mean Robin. I go by my middle name!" Which might be Delia, not Robin, nice save.

She shivers violently and then trembles, complete with chattering teeth. As she crosses her arms over her chest and hunches her shoulders forward, she loses a few inches in height, giving him the advantage. The shearling coat she's wearing seems to swim on her at the moment with the furry collar rising up to her ears and seeming quite loose around her head. It's almost as though she wants to shrink out of sight, or is trying to.

"You can call me Delia, if you want," she concedes with a weak smile.

"Delia it is."

Mister Calvin has an accent. One whose specific origins are difficult to pinpoint. There's australia in there to draw vowels long and europe fagging things up and a touch of familiar America to keep it like, grounded, when he clears his throat and tries to muffle the intensity of her tremble somewhat into his side with a firmer grip around her shoulders. Jeez.

"I don't have a middle name but you can call me Cal if you like. Can I buy you a drink?" He's skeptical again, in a worried kind of way when he looks her over a second time. "Y'look like you could use one."

Her first ever legal drink. Too bad she can't use her real ID, her fake has her birthday months from now.. two to be exact. "You— sure. Yeah… you know a place that doesn't ID? Because I'm not exactly legal." It's not a lie, Delia isn't legal by any means. She's just legal to drink in every state.

"I think I really need a drink… I know a couple of places where I don't think I'd get carded." Assuming she's still welcome in any of them.

Her smile widens a little and she straightens to her full height, "So… since you saved my life, does that mean you own it? I mean— Slavery is bad." Qualifier. "But there's that superstition. I don't think you'd want to own my life, it's a lot more trouble than it's worth."

"I know've a few, yeh." Several, in fact. Slide enough money under the table and the odds tend to slant in your favor. Not that Calvin's reaching for his wallet just yet — he eases the arm he still has around her to settle the same hand comfortably familiar at her waist. Invitation for her to pick a direction, if they're walking. "Was just headed that way, actually. But if you have another preference, that's fine."

The crosswalk turns, timely like, and this time traffic stops as it should, headlights lined up all in a safe little row. "I dunno about that," he says, ready to step down easily off the curb at her lead, "trouble's kind've my thing."

The direction they head through the streets of Brooklyn is toward a strip club. The young woman seems rather at ease at first but as they near the flashing lights of Burlesque, there's an audible gulp from her throat and a tentative smile toward Calvin that could be construed as nervousness for actually being in the presence of such a sordid place.

Tucking her hands into her pockets, she accidentally nudges the arm around her waist with her elbow and then looks down at it, looking somewhat surprised that it's there. The heavy leather of her coat doesn't lend much to feeling what's on the outside but she just gives him a tight grin and keeps moving toward the neon light. Right into the club.

"Interesting choice of bars," says Calvin. Because it is. But sure enough they get through the doors without a hitch, guyliner, waistcoat and all on his end, leather jacket and underage ID on hers. That he blends better here than he does on the street doesn't seem to occur to him as an oddity; he shows his teeth to a waitress in feathers and lets his arm fall after the bump, easy as anything.

Voice lifted over the music, one shoulder turned broad against a gaggle crowded round one stage, he maintains progress for the black top bar. Familiar enough after all. "John Logan's place, isn't it?" Isn't quite a question. "You a regular or merely trying to cater to my particular persona?"

Removing the heavy coat almost as soon as they're through the door, Delia makes her way to the bar and searches the bottles looking for something familiar. "Uhm.. Yeah, it is Mister L-Logan's place." His name is stammered and at the same time her eyes dart around the room looking for a familiar face. There's a relief to her posture after it's over and she shakes her head up at Calvin. "Neither, actually. I've only been here once." Which lends itself to the question, why would she come here again?

"You know Mister Logan?" It is a question, though it really shouldn't be, almost everyone she's ever met knows or knows of the blond Englishman. Underneath the coat, the redhead is dressed modestly enough, a plain long sleeved t-shirt with an indescernable design splashed across the front, jeans, and on her feet a pair of garishly painted Doc Martens. She doesn't quite match between the shirt and the shoes. Jeans go with everything.

Calvin's in a suit.

Kind of.

Sans jacket, anyway, save for the exaggerated cut of his tailcoat — retained despite the warmer air inside. The waistcoat under that is a pitchy matte black, as are the dress shirt and slacks still deeper down. His tie turned crisp down his collar is an ashier shade of grey.

And — as previously established — he is wearing shoes.

"I've been meaning to speak to him, is all." Darting eyes, if noticed, are disregarded. Really, he's fluidly confident enough in his lean against the bar that he might've already been drinking. "Dos patron-es por favor, a rum and coke and whatever she's having," added across the bar, he flops the leather of his wallet out of a back pocket without fanfare.

The shots come first. And he only picks up one of them when they do.


"To near misses."

"Uhm.. same, rum and coke please." That sounds good, enough. Reaching into her back pocket, Delia pulls out the twenty and lays it on the bar. Apparently, if she makes past a round, the next one is on her. Lifting her glass, she stirs it with the straw before holding it under her nose to take a small sniff.

"You want to talk to him?" The downward twitch of her eyebrows conveys a little bit of worry, whether it's for Logan or for herself can't really be discerned. "I— I'm looking for him too." Though, not here. "I can pass a message along or something."

Lifting her glass, she raises it to toast and grins, "To near misses."

"It's nothing serious. An idea for an expansion, you might say." Salt dusted meticulously down onto the side of his wrist, Calvin licks it off without fanfare on his way to tapping her glass and doing the shot proper-like, teeth sunk pearly white into lime.

The rind is dropped into the glass, and that's that. He doesn't reach for the second shot just yet, quiet pressure applied while he takes up the rum instead and the patron just — sits there. Quiet and crystal clear.

"You can keep your money. The amount've ass I'm going to rake in from the story of how I saved a mysterious girl's life in the middle of Brooklyn is more than worth it."

Really. That's what the peak of her eyebrow might be saying. "Okay, I won't argue," Delia intones as she pockets the bill again. "You want.. to expand.. the strip club?" Giving a quick look around the place, she narrows her eyes at Calvin and wrinkles her nose a little. "I don't think it's a good idea if curfew stays the way it is. Unless you're adding a lunch menu or something…"

Delia's lips press together tightly and she quickly takes a sip from her drink in order to keep from bursting out laughing. "Lunch menu… heh.. Thank you, again." Not for the laugh. The empty shotglass is eyed with a little bit of interest before she takes another drink.

"Mister Logan trades in more than bare skin," says Calvin around a tart sip of mostly rum with enough coke to — lend it at least a little color. "As you may know." His teeth show in another grin, then, maybe a touch too amused at her expense while he watches her.

And watches her.

And watches her. Considering something, it looks like. "If I were to tell you something very serious, do you think you would believe me?"

The drink is set down and Delia's eyebrows angle down sharply. "I don't know what Mister Logan trades in, the stock market?" She doesn't really know, she can't read binary. Still, she blushes at the smile as though she has a little more to hide than the innocent act would suggest.

"I uhm.. serious? It— uhm— it all depends, I mean. It's not like… the world is ending, zombie invasion, poltergeist, or the aliens are landing?" Giving that question a little thought, her face screws into a frown and she shakes her head. "Nevermind the world ending bit, and the zombies, and the ghosts… that can be taken seriously. Not aliens though…" It seems the list of things she can not take seriously as diminished quite a bit.

"Nooo, no." Sip. Calvin swallows hard, half his drink downed in one go so that he can set it aside and exchange it for the remaining shot of patron instead. "Nothing so sweeping or dramatic, just."

He downs the second shot, having (in his mind) given her time enough to take advantage of the narrow glass standing there sentinel on the polished bar surface. The lighting plays harsh of the arrogant angles of his face, alternately lighting the cut of his eyes too bright and casting them into stark shadow. It's hard to read him either way.

"If you go back to the island, you're going to die."

For the second time in one day Delia is frozen in place, this time the hipster in the cube car that she's staring at is a ginger with dreads. It takes her a minute or two before she swallows and then clears her throat with a small hmm. Taking a small breath inward, she tries to keep a neutral expression before squeaking, "Island? W-what island?"

It takes another minute or three before she composes herself enough to take a drink. It's a very long drink that only ends with the slurp of the last drops in her glass. "H-how? How am I going to die?"

What island? Calvin doesn't dignify deflection or lie or whatever that was with so much as a twitch at the corner of his mouth; he looks at her dead on, flat affect and blue eyes and the slow click of the second shot glass square down to the bar.

Then the lights go out.

All of them.

The music dies too, a clamor of discordant voices lifting quick in the confusion.

But by the time a lick of flame near the back wall really has the people who aren't scrambling for an extinguisher panicking (most of them) and emergency EXIT lights shudder reluctantly to life, Calvin is gone.

When the lights go out, Delia's hands go to the bar and she ducks, just in case the flash of gunfire is next. But the bullets don't come.

The flicker of red glow above the doors shine just enough to allow her to see, Delia looks around her and then pulls the iPad out of her pocket. If she goes back, she's going to die. If she stays, she has to take care of a few things. Chewing on her lip, she pushes a few buttons to power on the device and actually find a wifi hotspot to connect to. It's the first time in weeks she's been online.

I'll be back later

In the next breath, she's walking down the street to get a stronger signal as she pushes just a few more buttons. A map, upper west side, Dorchester Towers, directions from the Bay House.

Mr. Logan

Mr. Logan

Mr. Logan

Mr. Logan

The same message repeating over and over, likely just to garner enough attention to warrant an answer.

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