Until The Clock Strikes Twelve


delia_icon.gif logan_icon.gif

Scene Title Until The Clock Strikes Twelve
Synopsis Delia meets a godfather (that isn't a fairy) and he grants her one wish.
Date August 26, 2010


She'd heard from a friend of a friend, who has a friend that had a brother who worked for this guy that had a maid who bought a certain something from a certain someone somewhere around here. When she asked who the certain someone was, Delia was granted a small favor for a few bills. The name of a club and its manager, nothing more. "Ask for John Logan, dress nicely, maybe he'll talk to you. Make sure you dress nicely." That's what the man had said, whether John Logan was the one that could help her or not, he didn't say. In fact, he turned his back and went on about his business.

Dressing nicely is such a relative term, to Delia it's jeans without holes and a t-shirt that's not worn to threads and faded beyond recognition. This type of nice, she surmised, is not what her advice giver had in mind. This necessitated a trip to her sister's closet. The good news is, her sister is so far out of the country, she would never miss it.

Later that night, thirty minutes before curfew, a pair of long legs walk into the burlesque. Dressed in a little black number that hides barely anything, a bit of jewelry, and a set of stilettos that put her over six feet in height, Delia does her best to not appear awkward looking. Her hair is down and styled into loose waves that reach down to the middle of her back, her usually fresh face has a light layer of makeup, just enough to make her look sultry (or so she thinks).

The bouncer doesn't look twice at her as she slinks inside, slowly to avoid wobbling on the heels. It was a safe bet to assume she's just another dancer, except she's not. She's standing at the bar, trying to keep a pleasant expression on her face and searching for the man that fits the description of John Logan.

If anyone knows anything about Logan, he's probably not difficult to pick out. A garish flash of satin zebra stripe print is inevitably eyecatching — it's the shiny backing of a waistcoat that is otherwise sedate in black pinstripe at the front to match his slacks, button to sinch in around the red button down shirt, open at the collar, and when he leans his back against the tall bar, she can see better. Attractive in a weasley, gangly kind of way, if you like nice faces with a severe lack of good nature behind it, cold eyes not concealing anything, but displaying the starkness beyond with pride.

Also approximately five-foot-ten, unfortunately for both of them.

Logan is engaged in conversation with a woman who wears a suit that marks her distinctly different from the dancers on stage, or even the garishly accessorized help such as the door lady or the bartender. Delia doesn't have to wait long, though — the woman is moving off to attend to something, leaving Logan to glance over his shoulder and order, if she can read lips, a gin and tonic, cheers, while he waits.

One finger reaches behind Delia to tug the short dress down a little at the back. The dress covers her rear and maybe an inch or two of thigh, at best. What the redhead didn't take into account when she was raiding Lucille's closet is the difference in their stature. Her sister's petite size compared to Delia's… much larger proportions. The dress itself is backless which is one of the reasons she chose to leave her hair down. Compared to the women wearing barely anything on stage, Delia feels naked.

Swallowing hard, she takes a deep breath, which may have been a mistake (considering she may have just felt a stitch or two pop). She licks her lips to wet them and then catches her lower one between her teeth as she slinks a little closer. Then tilting her head, she asks in a rather timid voice, "Uhm.. Are you John Logan?"

There is a dismissive moment where Logan glances up towards her face from his leaning slouch against the bar, skipping passed her to check on his drink being made, and then back to girl. There's a lot of leg to deal with, he realizes, which produces the effect of his attention lingering on them, as well as his decision to remain in his casual slouch than try to draw himself up to his real height. It also evokes the following answer; "I definitely am." The low glass of gin and tonic is set down at his elbow, and unless he's got a tab going, free drinks might be indicative of a manager enough.

His fingers spider over it, little finger bending inwards to absently nudge at the lime slice that floats atop the mix and the ice within it, submerging the fruit with a push of fingertip and nail. With a thin if not entirely insincere smile, Logan asks, "What can I do for you?" But then he's following it up with a guess; "You're not one of the Facebook ones, are you?" It— probably makes more sense with context.

The rose tint that's been brushed onto her cheeks grows a shade darker as Logan's eyes stray down to her legs and stay there. Another quick breath is taken as he finally addresses her, or rather her legs, making her choice of dress a little more confident. "Facebook? N-no.." she breathes quickly, her blue eyes suddenly growing a bit wider. Perhaps she should have tried there first but the personal touch has always been her favored method of dealing with people.

"Should I be? I mean— I— " Her stammers follow with an even brighter shade of crimson and a twist of her head as she glances down to his fingers. Another cleansing breath to gather her courage and she quickly turns back to him, causing the mass of red curls to bounce a little. "I came to ask a f-favor?"

There's a comma of a crease at the corner of Logan's smile — the almost genuine kind, even if it comes from a place better described as amused rather than kind, but he can arrange for it to appear the latter. Veiled when he goes to take a deep sip of alcohol, watching her over the glassy rim and crush of ice cubes. His tongue greases along his teeth beneath top lip, glancing down at drink, at bar, before finally resting his weight on both handcrafted Berluti-clad feet, black patent leather with the same sheen as oil and the same pattern as tortoiseshell.

"Co-manager's gone on a recruitment drive over the Internet," he explains, as he goes to step away from the bar, and he's managed to meet her eyes with his own as opposed to anything below her neck, a shard of shifting nightclub light striking them in ice-chip vividness, briefly Siberian husky-like, which is haunting enough on a dog, let alone a mobster businessman.

He gestures with his glass. "What sort of favour?"

The hue of his eyes catch her off guard and combined with the play of light, strikes her speechless for a breath of a moment. "I— Oh! No, no no, no no no, I'm not here for a job," she stutters quickly, chancing a brief look to the strippers. There is, perhaps a flash of envy in her eyes for that instant, she could never be confident enough.

When she finally meets his eyes again, she gives him a wisp of a smile and draws her eyes down his form and then back up again to his eyes. Her head tilts lightly to the side, possibly in consideration. "I need to buy something, something important.. and…" Allowing her eyes to drift around them, she raises a hand to her mouth to place the nail of her index finger between her top and bottom teeth. A nervous habit, but they're manicured so she doesn't chance biting. "Is there somewhere a little quieter to talk?"

Quieter? But here is— pretty loud, with the low bassline making vibrations up through their feet through to their teeth, it feels like, and a crush of people moving by them, those wanting bar space or simply looking for the bathrooms. Lady has a point. By the time Logan has scouted out the room and back to her, irises reflect a much more normal shade of off-green grey, allowing for the subtleties of his expression to come through, mock generousity in the tilt of his smile before he nods once.

He has a guess, and it's a shame, but incorrect. Leading the way, Logan removes them both from the boisterous mainroom, and rather than detour upstairs for dressing rooms and his own office, he opts instead for the catacombs of private lounges.

Thankfully, it's probable that despite her get up, he's not expecting her to dance or anything. This indicated by the way he sits on the edge of the small, table-like stage in the centre of private room, leaving her to either stand or perch upon the leather-lined booth. There are mirrors on the wall, and the black shape of a camera, but it doesn't seem to be on. Setting his glass now next to his thigh, Logan leans back against the silver pole as he retrieves a silver cigarette case from a waistcoat pocket, going through the ritual of lighting up until smoke is ribboning up from the embered tip.

"I sell a lot of things," he says, accent degenerating briefly into its natural South London drawl. "What's your poison? And your name, ta."

As Delia follows behind, her finger snakes to the back of her dress to pull it down to a semi respectable length. It's still not one that a girl would flaunt in front of her father though. When they enter the room and he makes himself comfortable, she breathes a small sigh of relief at where he sits. Again, there's a rather nervous twitch to the smile that he's graced with.

The redhead slides down to skim the edge of the booth, not letting the leather touch her bare skin. Her right leg is lifted over her left to cross at the knee and she points her toe, rotating her ankle slowly. The mass of red hair is flipped over her shoulders to fully rest at her back, leaving her shoulders bare. When she's made herself as comfortable as he seems, her hand raises to play with the small gold chain and crucifix at her throat, twisting it around her finger.

"M-my name is Delia, I need to — " Another deep breath and her eyelashes shadow her blue irises until they're only slivers before opening again. "I need to buy a social security number…. for a friend." The last bit is added quickly, almost as an afterthought. "Female." Another one.

Almost in mimicry of her, Logan folds a leg over the other knee as well, his arms coming to criss-cross over the juncture with the bone white cigarette clasped between fingers in one hand, up near his knuckle. Surprise rounds his pale eyes for a second at what her answer turns out to be, mouth parting as if to speak but holding his tongue as she continues, and as if to double check, he glances at her bared arms. No track marks, either. Refrain dealers and users are so much easier to deal with.

"Your friend does," he repeats, doubt in his monotony but no outright cynicism detectable just yet. "Female." Okay, making fun, a little, slithers of smoke exhaled through nostrils. "What for?" There's a certain even insistence in his tone, though his power isn't a truth serum, even if he were applying it.

Her tongue darts out to sweep her upper and lower lip quickly before the lower one is caught between her teeth nervously. Her eyes narrow a touch as her head flickers briefly to the side, is he making fun of her? With her gaze cast downward, she barely whispers an inaudible answer. Rapid blinking masks the sheen of moisture gathering at her lower lids. She clears her throat with a small cough that's covered with the palm of her hand before repeating herself. It's a little louder this time but still barely a whisper, "R-re-registration."

Once the answer is given, she faces him fully, the neutral expression a defense against rejection. She rubs the index finger of the hand not at her throat in small circles against her thumb. It might be that reminder that has her adding quickly, "I— She can pay. She can pay anything you want." Hopefully within reason.

Logan could go, sorry, what was that?, lean in all genuine-like just to make her say it again, but no, he caught it the second time at least, and a knowing kind of smile spread across his features. More smoke adds to the faint haze collecting in the ceiling of the room, thicker at first, cloudlike, before dispersing — it only just veils the scent of acrid cologne. "It's a lot of money," he says, almost gently, kneejerk response to the wetness making saline sheens over sad kitty wavery eyeballs. "But I could do it. Maybe.

"Depends on when you need it. A week if I keep my heel on the balls of my contact." His contact doesn't actually have any, but it's a figure of speech.

Her lower lips is caught between her teeth again and she takes a quick breath inward. It's not subtle, not by the way her chest rises and causes the crucifix at her throat to glitter in the dim light of the room. "B-before the thirty first," she intones softly, he'd know the deadline, everyone does. "I can't — She can't wait a whole week."

"If you can. If you can't — I— I'll have to try something else." Delia doesn't bother trying to hide the fact that she needs it on her second statement. Catching his eyes, her eyebrows twitch upward at the inner edges giving her a countenance of worry. "How much is a lot of money?" The amount is the secondary of her concerns.

No she can't, a modicum of understanding displayed in bright eyes, an inevitable attempt at problem solving despite himself casting Logan's attention away from her. Math makes him go kind of distant eyed, head tilting at a loose angle and the jut of angular jaw portraying some amount of thought before his nose wrinkles. "The verification alone won't be on time. There aren't a lot of clean and wholesome customers looking for new identities so believe me when I say that you can't rush looking into a thing like that.

"Mind you— " And he takes another sip of his gin and tonic, remembering its presence when he makes an instinctive search for a (not present) ashtray. "Mind you, there're other ways to go about it. I mean. You seem rather new at this, love — no offense. I assume Registration is the long and short of the problem. Why not— Register as a non-Evo?"

Spoken as if the easiness of this were equal to picking up bread and milk at the cornerstore.

"No, I mean, none taken… Offense that is," Delia emits quietly, casting her eyes down at that pointed toe. A sigh is let loose before she looks up at him again, her right eyebrow ticking up faintly into a point. "I can't— I can't register as a non-evo. I took the home tests, I'm positive." There's a slight quiver in her voice as though she's about to burst into tears at any second.

Another series of rapid blinks has her eyes looking every bit as sad kitten as Logan's do. "My daddy doesn't want me to register, but I need a card to work and go to school. I— I don't want to be on a list." Her voice cracks at the end and she stops her blurted explanation. The spiral of smoke catches her attention and she stares at it, her eyes glazing slightly until the coil passes the man's face. With her focus back on him, the redhead gives him a slight smile and shrugs. "I even tried to volunteer to give tests, but you need to be registered to do that."

"You'd better start getting used to being on the list, one way or another," Logan says, with a careless shrug, again resting his spine against the metal pole behind him, skull coming to lean there too and watching Delia out of hooded eyes, arms folding. "They won't give a shit about non-Evolveds, you know. It's just the way to flush people like you and me out of the bushes, as subtle as fucking fire and smoke. Fortunately, it just takes one lawman with an inclination to bend the rules."

He pauses, there, as if making some secret decision, before he continues. "I've a contact in New Jersey, if that's a route you'd prefer. Cheaper — still costly, but cheaper, and if you get it done before the 31st, they won't be asking questions for an extra half year or some such thing, I don't know, I got my papers done when I got arrested this one time." He waves his hand vaguely, dismissing the story.

"All he does is tick the box that says your result came up non-Evo. You get your card a couple days later. I'd be honestly more worried 'bout what happens when they start squinting at the names that don't got a result attached to it over the next few years, and by then, they'll be turning what's currently a messy clusterfuck of a system into a fine art."

Delia's crooked smile comes out in genuine form when Logan makes his analogy. Her ribs tense with a silent laugh exclamated by the puff of air expelled from her form. She laces her fingers together and presses them between her thighs as she watches him. The bright smile slowly wanes into a pensive yet still pleasant expression.

"Mister Logan, if I register as a non-evolved, what will happen when I have to renew? I— Should I come back to you? I'll have to keep taking the test every year, won't I?" Her quizzing comes at the high cost of blatant ignorance when it comes to the matter. "But yeah— If I could, can you — I mean, I'd like to do that. They won't look for me if I'm not evolved." Another hitch in her voice, the woman really wouldn't be good at poker.

There's a static pause at the questions, vague amusement at ignorance made transparent as well as analysis given to the way her voice changes its tone, trips over itself at certain words, and he ashes his cigarette onto the floor."Not yet," Logan denies, with a shake of his head, watching the taptap of index finger to cigarette. "The renewing. No blood tests unless you expire your— card thing. So just make sure it doesn't get out of date, and don't get arrested." Easy enough, supposedly.

A finishing gulp of gin and tonic has him grimacing a little at both the cold of ice and the taste of the liquor, before half-done cigarette is finished into it mainly to free up his hands to extract a slender wallet from a silk-lined pocket. A business card and a thin pen from leather crease are held, and he scratches ink over Kain Zarek's details in absent politeness, before using the blank backside of the cardboard to scribble different details altogether.

"Nice enough guy," he says, injecting a jovial rhythm and tone into his words. "It's funny — the closer you get to Staten Island, the more rotten the law gets. This is about as close as they come, New Jersey-side, without being set up in the irradiated zone." The black, glossy rectangle of his own business card is pushed out of its sleeve as well, and both are offered out for her to take.

Slipping her hands out from under her thigh, Delia stands as well as she can without wobbling on the heels. Her fingers graze against his as she takes the cards and she examines them, one at a time before looking over at him again. A genuine smile of gratitude makes its appearance and before the man has time to react, the redhead wraps her arms around his neck to give him a tight hug. "Thank you, thank you, thank you," the words are practically voiced in cheerleader bubbly.

Blushing again, she pulls away and clears her throat nervously. "Sorry, I'm just— this is the best thing that's happened to me since.. In a while." She doesn't elaborate or make any additions, preferring to duck her head down again to look at the cards. Once again, her free hand makes its way down to the hem of her dress to tug it down an inch.

Logan's hand flies out as if panicked, gripping onto the pole just behind him as her arms python around his neck and a wince writing across his face — that she thankfully can't see from that angle, and even if she could, bushy red hair is doing its part to obscure his expression. Feminine notes of shampoo and perfume do something to relax him, however, by the time the show of gratitude is winding to a close, enough that the hand not gripping the stripper pole like a lifeline comes around to rest on her back in a squeezed embrace. That it's a little low is probably— probably— accidental.

She's broken free, anyway, the Brit flashing her a don't mention it tight smile, hands bracing on either side of the stage once he's tucked his wallet away. "If he gets all shy, just let me know," he grants, with all the magnanimousness of a fairy wand granted Cinderella her fairytale until the clock strikes twelve.

He pushes himself off his perch, picking up emptied glass. "Or simply give us a bell if you want a drink some time."

The invitation has her baby blues raking him with something of a wolfish look, as if considering the possibilities. There's something to be said about dressing the part, it definitely changes a disposition when you feel even the slightest bit comfortable. With a shy smile and a nod of acceptance, it's gone. "Yeah, I will," her voice is a little breathy as she tries to contain the smile but it's like trying to keep a lid on a can of joke snakes, once it's off, you never get those little buggers back in the tin.

Another tug is given to the hem of her skirt before she pivots on one toe toward the door. "Back out the way in, right? Or is there another way?" Curfew's passed, who knows what sort of trouble she'll get into on the way home.

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