Unintentional Procrastination


joanna_icon.gif ziadie_icon.gif

Scene Title Unintentional Procrastination
Synopsis Ziadie's attempt to get paperwork turned in is yet again delayed.
Date March 4, 2011

Spanish Harlem

With a bit of a pause, Nocturne Ziadie goes to lean against one wall in the hall of Spanish Harlem's police precinct, an area not open to the general public, and therefore as quiet as the hectic building ever gets. The former cop smiles faintly, watching another man, at least 20 years younger and still in uniform, walk away. "I appreciate all th' help, Campos," he calls out, earning a nod of recognition.

A moment, and then Ziadie squares his shoulders, leaning on his cane as he begins to walk back towards the lobby and eventually back towards the street, a small folder with both paperwork that he owes Redbird but needed NYPD sign-off on and his pension check under his arm. He could have the check mailed now, and he knows it, but habit is a difficult thing to change, and he likes the excuse to come by.

Another habit is running into Joanna when she's in a bad way. A significantly worse state than she was the first time. She'd managed to make it through the quick meeting that was supposedly urgent down here and had left. But pain is something that at times can just paralyze you. Can just seize you up and force you to sit down, force you to stay still all while mentally hoping that it will just pass, go away, disappear.

Joanna has since November come to realize that it won't pass you by. Won't disappear and as Ziadie makes away from the police station, past an alcove that leads to the foyer of an apartment building, in the shelter of such is Joanna, eyes closed, her side leaning against a building and praying for it to pass. If the grimace on her face is any indication, today is not a good day.

Ziadie pauses, recognition forcing its way through the remaining headache that he has. Several days have lessened the headache a bit, enough that Ziadie ventured out, but not by much. The pause continues, and slowly, the older man walks over to the alcove. "Hey there," he says, trying not to surprise Joanna too much, positioning himself so that he's clearly visible if and when she opens her eyes.

One eye cracks open a fraction before it closes again. "Ziadie," Out on the release of a pent up breath. Thank god it's someone she recognizes. "You drive?" She doesn't know whether he still holds a license she's only ever seen him walking. She has a death grip it seems, on a rail attached to the wall, her briefcase and purse at her feet. Likely it's her proximity to the police station that has kept anyone from stealing either while her eyes are closed, or she just hasn't been here that long.

Ziadie tilts his head to one side, cane is his left hand so that he can lean on the wall. Concern plays across the dark features of his face. "Yes," he says, holding up a hand in pause before reaching into the pocket of his leather jacket for his wallet. He flips it open, pulls it close to his face so that he can read the tiny print on his driver's license. "At least, for another six months, I do." Then the wallet is closed and put away again. Not that he's actually driven recently, but at his age, it's something that is closer to muscle memory than anything else.

"I can't. Right now" Which means that she normally can. Seeping under her lashes, pooling in the corner, tears gather. This is a bad, bad day. "I need help" Which is a really hard thing for Joanna to say, if even to her daughter, much harder to say to someone like Ziadie. "I need help" Whined like a little kid, this composed woman in suit and wool trenchcoat, every part of her in place and a normally imposing stoic woman. Reduced to tears in a doorway, knuckles white around a railing.

Ziadie nods, bending, though slowly, to pick up Joanna's purse, her briefcase, shifting them to his left arm, and then carefully taking a step closer, to offer her support so that she can walk, slipping his arm around her shoulders. What strength he lacks due to the slight frailty from age, at the moment is made up for by height and determination. "Alright, where you parked?" His voice is quiet, concerned.

She doesn't want to move, but to get to the car, she has to. Paying it forward Ziadie, all the help that he's getting, and here, a chance to pay it forward. Joanna slips an arm around his waist, a gesture to a black SUV befitting a lawyer. "Keys in my purse, parks itself" Which isn't really a selling point right now since it likely doesn't unpark itself. Breathing ragged, she tries to remain upright, motor under her own power so she doesn't bowl over the cane bearing old guy.

It is early enough in the day that Ziadie is relatively stable on his feet as they walk, slow steps and he glares at the few people who try and get in their way. The cane of course helps with that, really. Once at the SUV, so that Joanna can lean on it, he opens her purse, head tilted down so that he can see the keys, so that he isn't just reaching in blindly. The keyfob of the remote is brought up to his face as well, and then Ziadie pauses. From inside his jacket comes a pair of glasses which are settled on his face, and he presses the unlock button, opening the passenger door for her.

Keys, PDA, blackberry, pill bottle - but nothing that will touch this day, Joanna sags against her car, grateful when the click of the doors means that they're unlocked, waving him off to get into the drivers side while Joanna can manage to at least get herself into the passenger side. It's a matter of where to go, home? ER? She's had bad days, this by far since November, the worst.

When he's in, her seatbelt across her hips, a ragged request "Just drive me home please." Because from there, she can decide what to do, call Tasha, call someone. At least that won't be so far as perhaps having had to go across town. Work for the day has halted, she can tend to more.

"What, what brings you out here?" Each word an effort but it helps give her a focus, something to attempt to distract her. So she doesn't just scream.

It takes a moment for Ziadie to figure out how to slide the driver's seat all the way back. He's significantly taller than Joanna, in any case, and when he's done that, adjusted the rear view mirror, the key goes into the ignition, and the SUV revs to life. The folder with his paperwork is set in between the two seats. Thankfully, Ziadie can remember where Joanna lives, and as he peers over his shoulder waiting for an opportunity to pull out into traffic, he answers.

"I'd paperwork to pick up," he says, "and my pension check." Ziadie shifts, pulling out into traffic with only a slight jerking movement of the vehicle. Once in traffic, there's a slight curse emitted as the light ahead changes to red, and the man slows the SUV to a stop. "Th' man you gave me th' card to, Mister Cardinal," he continues, talking to give Joanna something to focus on, "he knows Ivanov, th' friend of mine I been staying with. Offered me a job. Retirement was getting boring, but there's lot of paperwork to do."

"Always paperwork. We're born with paperwork, and when we die there's paperwork. We breathe there's paperwork. We are all buried under mounds of paperwork, can never… never escape it." She lifts a hand from hip to head, shaking like she might be the one going through withdrawal but in truth it's the adrenaline that her body is pumping out in a vain effort to help her. Her voice wavers, breaking, even as she feels like knives are slicing through her abdomen and her hand slides from her eyes to her mouth, palm closing over pink lipsticked lips to stifle a sob.

As they move again, Ziadie looks over at Joanna. "There's an ER, closer than your house," he says, as if he's debating whether to give the woman a choice in the matter. "You sure about going t' yer house?"

"ER." Better now than waste time. "I wish he'd let me die." She never thought that she'd say those words, even on her up till now bad days, it was bearable, with the help of drugs, better than living. "I wish he'd let me die Ziadie." There's no lie in it, no evolved related discomfort inflicted by the words the brunette speaks beside him. "Take me there. Please, just, take me wherever, out back, shoot me, put me out of my misery."

Under his breath, Ziadie grumbles, something about a lack of flashing lights in the car, though it's predominantly good natured. "No, Joanna," he says, frown lines on his face as he pushes through traffic, taking a rather sharp turn at a less crowded street to go towards the ER, pushing the speed limit, "y'ain't gonna die an' I ain' gon' let it. We'll be there soon, they'll be able t' do something."

One poor pedestrian almost gets run over, backing up from where he was emerging in between two vehicles, expletives bellowed out in the vehicles wake, a middle finger raised in salutation to Ziadie and his driving. Joanna on the other hand, is doing much the same, only the name isn't Ziadie's that she curses, but the name 'Kozlow'. The one, it seems, responsible for the state that the woman is in even as they're pulling up close to the ER, ambulances ahead, people milling around in scrubs or jackets and clothes, coming and going, patients and workers alike.

Occasionally, despite his retirement, the former cop uses the skills he'd learned on the force, and this is one such time. He pulls up, carefully, to the entrance of the ER, puts the SUV in park, and steps out, disregarding the sign that says no parking. "Need help over here!" he calls out, in the direction of the paramedics, voice rough but loud enough to carry as he opens the passenger side door.

He'll be forgiven, pardoned for his vehicular transgressions, workers emerging forth to help, ease Ziadie away from the door, hustle Joanna in, asking questions of her that she answered in little breaths, whisked away from the older gentleman, out of sight and to do what they do best. Leaving him with the car, instructions of where to go to be with his wife — they're not mindreaders — and where he can park his vehicle. His attempt to get paperwork turned in, yet once again, delayed.

He corrects them, absent-mindedly, without any real force behind the words. When Ziadie parks, he waits a moment, cell phone in hand. Having locked the car behind him, he leaves a short message on a voicemail somewhere, that he might be out longer than he expected, but everything's fine. The folder of paperwork is tucked back inside his jacket, secure enough, and at some point in getting to the waiting room, Ziadie produces his badge in order to explain his sidearm, brushes off the occasional question as to whether or not he is alright.

There's a weary sigh, and one more phone call made as he settles into a chair. He'll turn in the paperwork another day. It can wait.

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