What Goes Around


ling_icon.gif logan_icon.gif

Scene Title What Goes Around
Synopsis …is nothing that Ling is interested in when she asks Logan for some advice and information regarding her vision.
Date June 22, 2010

The Corinthian: Lounge and Bar

Situated on the uppermost floor of the building, the Corinthian Bar and Lounge boasts an arched ceiling whose many small, square panes of glass double as a huge skylight. Of course, the large and open room is also lit by a dozen half-dome chandeliers suspended from that double-height ceiling and several high wall sconces. Brass fixtures gleam in the warm light, while the room's scattered potted palms drink it in with their bladed foliage. A ring of doubled marble columns supports the weight of the skylight dome and defines the two sections of the room: that lofty open space in the center; the quieter, slightly darker and more private edges of the lounge.

The tables are elegant rectangles of fine black glass, the seating a mixture of russet-upholstered couches and comfortably-padded oaken chairs. Most of the floor is covered by carpet shaded in the reds and golds of autumn, save for a runner down the very center of the room which is colored the exact shade of purple found in wisteria blossoms. The bar food at the lounge is much like its decor: expensive and beautifully arranged; but unlike many such spendy places, it's also very good. So is the alcohol.

Nearly two weeks, now. Two weeks since the blackouts. Two weeks of wasted time. Ling Chao had been busy since her resolve, just several days before. And yet still, she hadn't been able to turn up much of anything, really, certainly nothing that would help her in any meaningful capacity. All it was was wasted time, flittered away when there was conceivably little to spare.

The table she sits at now is a familiar one, within the Corinthian's bar and lounge - it's the same one she takes every time she ventures up from her room to this part of the building for some hot tea, or to otherwise escape the room's droll confines. Now, however, she sits with purpose. A call has been put in, and a meeting arranged. Hopefully, with someone who can help put her one step closer to that which she seeks.

As she takes a sip of her tea, she eyes the door. All that she could do now was wait for her guest to arrive.

Logan isn't consistently punctual, but he does show up eventually, and he does now at a lazy kind of saunter of someone perhaps staying up especially to watch certain World Cup sporting events on TV alone at his apartment drinking by himself. This, you might not guess just by looking at him, in his designer jeans and loose, three hundred dollar shirt buttoned to here, with one cuff rolled up near his elbow to allow for the cast that his left hand is strapped into, thumb immobilised in the hard plaster, with a few bits of grafitti here and there.

It's hard to have a cast, work in a strip club, and not come away with sparkle-penned hearts printed on the white material, but he doesn't apparently seem to mind. Taking off a pair of mirrored sunglasses, his right hand folds these up to slip the arm of the pair down the front of his shirt to dangle where it buttons, cast a look around for the familiar woman he's come out to meet.

Spying her brings a quick, ever-chilly smile, before he approaches, right hand out to drag out a seat for himself. "Good to see you again, darling."

Finally seeing Logan make his entrance, Ling sits up straight(er) in her seat, taking a sip of her tea. She offers a nod of recognition as he reaches the table, offering only a half smile. "A pleasure to see you again, John. Would you like something to drink?" Hands are placed out on the table, interlocked as she looks at her guest appraisingly for several seconds before speaking up again.

"I'm glad you could make it, on relatively short notice." Her expression is stoic, even for her- which might be more telling than anything else, really. "I wanted to… talk to you about something. Something I'm hoping you can help me with. Something important, at least to me."

Dumping himself into his seat, Logan flicks a glance to the drinks menu, then up to where a no smoking sign is pinned to the wall. In that case— "A double gin over ice would be fantastic," he decides, sitting back in his chair and letting it rock back onto its back most legs as his right hand fidgets with some loose crease in his cast, fingernails glassy and clean. It's been two weeks, as noted, and his face is free of bruising and cleanly shaven, looking about as bright eyed and healthy as someone like him can, minus the fractured wrist.

"Especially if this is important. What can I do for you?"

Ling's eyes narrow a bit, and she leans back in her chair in a strange display of casualness, a sharp exhale following. Straight as ever to the business at hand. "I'm sure you remember the mucky bit of business we went through in the fall, yes?" Fingers drum a bit on the table while she lifts her tea in the other hand, a sip of her drink. "With the Triad." The last bit is spoken with a hush, uncharacteristically cautious tone, and her eyes noticeably darting out and around the room when she speaks. "I was curious as to if you, of anyone else you knew of, had been keeping any… tabs on any remnant activity." Fingers continue to drum as she stares ahead, a foot tapping occasionally, almost as if in an unintended beat.

Better fingers spidering over the top of his glass, Logan simply listens with his posture relaxed and expression attentive, but aloofness inherent in demeanor and interest. His chin tips in, once, at the mention of their shared business ventures late last year, taking a deep sip of the poison-clear spirits in his glass, the gentle shift of icecubes within almost stinging his teeth. "I've been keeping some tabs," he says, with a deliberate blink meant to substitute for a nod. "The Ghost Shadows, the White Tigers, they've been so far very agreeable since October.

"But I suppose you're more worried about the Flying Dragons?" is an easy guess, watching her with eyes almost as pale as his drink, save for the taint of jade that boasts their true colour.

Ling gives a slow nod in response, gaze moving off into the side. "Yes. I'm wondering if you know who's still… in play." The cup of tea is finish, slid over to the side and ready to be replaced with another. "I'm more than certain of at least one. But any insight would be most welcome."

"For the most part," Logan begins, swirling ice and gin alike in his glass, "they've scattered to the four winds, love. With the siblings dead and gone, and all — there's likely to be a couple of Lui's men rattling around, but no one important. Foot soldiers, you know the kind. But you might remember one of them. I had something of an encounter with him."

A beat. "Of kinds. Bao-wei Cong."

Ling's expression turns into an almost predatory smile. "Of course. Old beasts die hard, after all." A new tea s placed down for her, and she immediately takes a slip. "He's the one I figured was still doing business, in whatever manner that may be now. But…" Her brow furrows, and her gaze narrows as she sits forward.

"Tell me, John, what did you see in the blackouts?" The question comes with no lead in, suddenly tacked on to the end of her previous sentence.

His eyebrows go up at that question, visibly caught off guard by this sudden deviation— or so it seems to him, anyway, and enough that yet again, his first name goes uncorrected (not that it isn't his name). Glancing off out the window, Logan considers it a moment, before the inevitable smirk that happens whenever he thinks about his vision quirks at the corners of his mouth. "I dunno if I was 2 am after the 8th of November, as they all keep saying," he says, "or 2 am on the 8th. But I was in bed with someone — a woman," is what he tends to clarify, "one I hadn't met."

He sniffs, then takes a finishing sip of the sharp liquor, nose wrinkling. "I take it yours was a little less mystifying. Or more so."

A moments pause, and then Ling leans forward, fingers steepled in front of her. "I'm not sure what exactly happened in mine. I surmise from what I could make out the haziness that I'd been shot." She gives a moment for that to sink in, and her eyes narrow once more. "I don't know by whom. I just know he had blonde hair. Everything else is… fuzzy. Hazy. I was much more focused on accepting what seemed inevitable." She reaches to her cup of tea, eyeing it momentarily before taking a sip.

"I'm reaching at conclusions, of course, but I wouldn't be surprised if it's a consequence of November."

It takes a frozen moment of interest for Logan to arrange his expression into something sympathetic, or at least concerned, but the interest remains as he thinks about that for a few moments, emptied glass set aside and a hand curling beneath his jaw, the knuckle of his index finger nudging against the dent in his chin as he considers. "Well it wasn't me," he adds, after a moment, a half-smile that's more or less sincere. "I'm too memorable for that kind of thing. But if you're sure it was a white bloke…"

His long nose wrinkles again, only it's not the taste of aclohol that incites such a reaction. "Is your record truly that spotless?" he asks. "If you're certain, though, I think I might have somethink of a lead." That's not a typo, just his accent. "They had some allies around that time. Little story. There was an incident I had involving a shipment of Refrain I might have nicked from the Dragons. They got my name, had these boys come collect me.

"Several months later, this bloke who did it comes up to apologise, of all things. Didn't like the way the Dragons did business. I dunno much except that he was employed by some other wanker I've never met. Might be your lead, if you think it's all connected. The Dragon-breed of your type didn't do much dealing with my type, know what I mean?"

Ling wrinkles her nose. "If it were you, I'm certain this would be a much messier meeting, Ling intones. It… almost seems like she's trying to be funny, and failing spectacularly at it. "Honestly, I'm not sure what I'm certain of. Or, if these visions are what people say they are, what may happen between now and November." She leans back, and attempts to stare Logan dead in the eyes.

"What I do know is that I am not going to sit back and let my future be wrested from my own hands. For all I know, it could be something I haven't done yet, or a junkie I got hooked on Refrain looking for some payback." She scowls at Logan, arms crossing around her midsection. "I don't know. So I'm looking where I most expect, for the moment. I don't want to just… up and return to China. That's running."

He shrugs, a noncommittal gesture, being a very capable coward with a rather pleasant future to get his dick wet in. "I don't have a number or a point of contact with this guy," Logan starts. "But that's because I haven't bothered to look. He sort of just trolled into a regular haunt of mine and invited himself to the table. I can do a little digging and see if I can't summon a needle in a haystack for you — wouldn't be a bad place to start. He didn't give me his name or anything.

"Just the chap he works for. Someone called Adam Monroe." He lifts a shoulder in another, more apologetic shrug. "Never seen his face, wouldn't know where to start, though you might consider seeing whether the old dragon Cong still likes you. If he doesn't— I managed to build some rapport enough that he might not shoot on sight. A meeting would be overdue, in any case."

"I had considered paying a visit to Cong. I doubt he'll be amiable- I'm confident he was one of the first to hear what happened on that rooftop. I'm uncertain what he would hope to accomplish, regardless, I might be able to take a look of sorts around his office." Ling looks thoughtful fingers tapping on her own arm. "Adam Monroe? I'll keep it in mind. It's hard to say what might be useful, and what not."

She exhales sharply, and a rare, genuinely rueful expression crosses her face. "If you could look into it, it would be appreciated. I hate to trouble you - both for your trouble, and my pride. It's not something I do lightly."

"Helping isn't something I do lightly," Logan says, in what sounds like his brand of reassurance. "But what can I say — what goes around comes around, or— the other way around. You happen to be investigating within an area of my interest and I'll gladly skive off your notes if you find out anything about Monroe or Dragons related." Picking up his sunglasses, he only shakes them unfolded, not yet putting them back on. "That, and your vision sounds a bit of a waste."

A smile crosses Ling's face, and she nods. "Ah, yes. What comes around goes around, the exact idiom that has me so worried." Her arms unfurl from around her, returning to test on the table. "If that's the case, I'll certainly pass on anything I happen to find out to you. Only fair, after all." Yes, Ling Chao is deciding to be fair, an ominous thing indeed. The last comment elicits a raised eyebrow, followed by a bit of a scowl. "A waste?" she questions.

Standing up from the table, Logan slides the glasses back into place, pale eyes abruptly hidden between twin mirrors of Ling's scowl reflected back at her. "Certainly. Death, should this end that way, occasionally is such." His cast-clad arm is lifting, unbruised fingers wiggling in a butterfly flap of a goodbye, before he's pushing away with a final, "We'll be in touch," over his shoulder, long legs carrying him for out.

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