White Rabbit


bebe_icon.gif felix_icon.gif

Scene Title White Rabbit
Synopsis Felix encounters a white rabbit that he can neither unravel nor unwrap. Subtle frustration abounds.
Date April 15, 2009

Chinatown - Canal Street Market

Day or night, Canal Street is busy in Chinatown. Perfumes, purses, produce, pork, and poultry are all sold side by side in busy open storefronts. One entire portion of the street is dedicated to nothing but jewelry stores catering to various price ranges. Box vendors sell all manner of sizzling foodstuffs to passing pedestrians, some of it identifiable, some of it better left unexplained. The ambiance is one of business and pleasure.

Despite what the police and the press might like to think, Staten Island isn't the only safe haven for scum and villainy left to be found in the slowly decaying remains of the great New York City. Check out Chinatown next time you're so inclined to nurse a doubt. There are just as many hookers and whores, thugs and crime lords; they just come in slightly different shapes and flavors and you have to squint your eyes in order to see them… but, they're there all the same.

Given the current climate and the idea that this might actually be enemy territory, it could be a little bit dangerous for someone like Bebe to casually stroll the streets by herself, even in as innocuous and welcoming a venue as the Canal Street Market. She displays no outward indication of fear or apprehension, however, as she stands nearly gawking at the storefront of some random jewelry store, admiring the wares within while she nibbles on a skewered bit of fried something or other recent purchased from a vendor nearly within arm's length.

Yeah. Talk about enemy territory. This, also, is another part of New York Felix shouldn't be in. Not after that last shooting. But….he's as foolish as ever on that front. It's his city, no one gets to tell him where he may or may not go. The sort of pride that necessitates a fall, sooner or later. He's in black leather jacket, t-shirt, and jeans, like that might somewhat disguise his innate coppishness. Good luck there.

She's definitely one he doesn't expect to see. He doesn't literally double take, but it is close… pausing in his perusal of a spice vendor's wares to watch her out of the corner of his eyes.

By all accounts, Bebe appears to be doing nothing so sinister as window shopping. She trundles along somewhat aimlessly, head perpetually turned to whatever sort of wonderful wares the next shop might have set out front to show off, eyes pretty much kept to her side of the street. However, by the time she makes her way down to the Good & Pand place which hocks herbs and any number of traditional Chinese medicinal accoutrements, she steps inside the building without hesitation.

Which is… more or less where he is. There's no good way to bolt away without being seen…and really, no reason to. So he simply smiles at her, almost shyly, from before a whole shelf full of strangely anthropomorphic roots. "Hey," he says, as if her name has momentarily escaped him, before he comes up with, "Bebe, right?"

Oh hi. This is a little bit awkward, right? Actually, not really. At least, Bebe doesn't appear to be nearly so perturbed at being accosted with a salutation from a living dead man as one might imagine. "Hello, stranger," she says, sliding on an easy smile before taking a step back in apprehension — er, to find a bin she can toss her freshly finished bamboo skewer into. One the dirty deed is accomplished, she briefly thrusts the pad of her right thumb between her lips in order to clean what dregs of teriyaki that got left behind from her unorthodox snack. "What are you doing here?" she wonders oh-so-casually.

"Shopping," he says, a touch simplistically. "I'm glad to see you. I meant to thank you for the help you gave me," The blue eyes are clear and guileless, and he moves no closer than he already is. "But you aren't the healer, are you?"

"You're welcome," says the undercover hooker; the worlds roll off of her tongue reflexively and yet, somehow, she still manages to make them sound genuine. This isn't the sort of conversation that Bebe intends to have while occupying an aisle stationery. Instead, she leads the lithe Fed down and around the rows while she searches slowly for something specific. She casts him a sly look from the corner of her eye before marching down another aisle and asking quietly, "What makes you say that?"

"Because I remember you with pink hair, in a very different environment. Some of it has come back, you see," he explains, in all earnestness. "And if you were a healer, Logan'd not've needed to take that other young woman. But he did." Fel's still apparently contentedly warm and alive, graceful. Not shambling and cold, happily.

They apparently come to pause halfway down an aisle full of nothing but sweets… presumably… although most of the packaging is entirely in Chinese, so it's hard to say if what Bebe's really ogling is hard candy or cough drops. "I can see why you might think that," she informs the shelf situated in front of her face — neither confirmation nor denial of the man's wagered theory — while her brown eyes rove carefully over the rows upon rows of plastic packets laid out before them. Ah ha! There they are! She snatches up a bag blazoned with a bunny springing over a label that contains two words in English: white rabbit. "Have you ever had these?" she asks with an innocently curious tilt to her chin.

Felix eyes her, trying to read beyond the pretty face. But she's nearly as practiced at the mask as he is, albeit for different reasons. "I have not. Permit me?" he says, holding out a hand, and clearly intending to buy them for her, if she lets him.

"They're wonderful," she says, handing the bag over obligingly before retrieving a second from the shelf and proceeding down the aisle. "I don't have much of a sweet tooth," she offers over her shoulder briefly before continuing their conversation with her back to the man. "But, I have been known to make an exception for these." All this is disclosed as she carefully squeezes past an Oriental couple and their chubby-cheeked boy-child, who earns a toothy grin from the off-duty whore just as she rounds the corner; she momentarily shares this expression with Felix before disappearing back behind her mutable mask of casual civility.

"How are you feeling, by the way? I take it your memories have returned…"

"Yes," he says, more cheerfully, though his smile remains faint and crooked. He deposits his bag on the counter once they arrive, and fishes his new wallet out of his pocket. Whoever looted his body never bothered to return it. "Good. See, there's something funny though," he notes, even as his voice remains offhand. "I'm told I wasn't just hurt bad. I was dead. Like, cold, fish nibbling on your eyeballs, dead."

It's not the one with badass motherfucker on it, is it? Otherwise, she may have a clue as to who's carrying it now…

Bebe doesn't miss a beat, however, and delivers her reply just as easily as anything. "You were," she quietly informs the baskets of — oh, God! What is that?!

Ginger root. Unless it's actual screaming mandrake. Which is possible, considering where they are. And no, a plain black leather wallet, like you'd find at Target. "So there really is an Evolved who can resurrect the dead?" His tone is flat, but not actually disbelieving.

More like big, black centipedes on a stick! Does anyone want to go back over to the candy aisle again? Bebe browses the desiccated wares without flinching and, in fact, picks out a stick or six before moving on to the mandrake. "So it would seem," is the only thing Bebe has to say about that. She's so casual about it.

"Why me?" Felix wonders, voice pitched very low. "I'm Logan's enemy. Unless it was someone….no. I'm a cog in the machine. The case against him doesn't die even if I do."

"Why not you?" Bebe bounces back while simultaneously manhandling a dried cluster of stringy mandrake roots as if looking for spun shapes in their skinny tendrils. "You got lucky," she announces before turning her head again and eyeing the man thoughtfully, very nearly looking through him. That's certainly not the usual way a man might 'get lucky' with Bebe. "The fresher the better," she than tacks on, apropos of nothing, save unless she's referring to the clump of knotted stuff held in the palm of her hand.

"I'm well aware. So, I have an unknown benefactor…." he says, musingly. "I assume it takes effort. And if you were my caretaker, I assume he's some ally of Logan's."

Pulling a plain, brown paper page from a dispenser placed conveniently within reach, Bebe very meticulously inserts each item into its own sack before folding the top edge over carefully. Any adage she has left to offer now is merely vulgar child's play. "You know what they say about assuming…" See? The saying goes that when you 'assume' you make an ass out of u and me. Look, let's face it. In the 'leading you on' department, Bebe was built to go the distance. She could do this all day without revealing a single thing that Felix isn't supposed to know. The smile that she's hiding at the corner of her mouth, however, suggests that somewhere along the way, she took quiet offense to something and now she's just being ambiguous out of spite… maybe.

As the not-so-unusual twosome head up to the cashier's counter, John Logan's littlest whore attempts to pitch the agent off-kilter as she asks, "How's the Italian guy, by the way?"

Felix spreads his hands in the universal I got no idea gesture. Not a flicker in the Russian's face at the mention of Teo. He eyes her rather warily, lips thinning out a little, but doesn't comment. He does, however, pay for her purchases and his own, dragging out that new wallet.

Fair enough. She's not really answering his questions so why should he answer hers? If there's anything that Bebe's able to wrap her brain around, it's the fair price of an exchange. "Thank you," she offers in a genuine tone as Felix picks up the tab. Her various edible bric-a-brac is handed over in a cheap plastic bag but she seems unwilling to wait for the inevitable boat ride home before her sweet tooth is sated — in fact, she's in such a hurry that she actually pops the candy into her mouth with the wrapper still on!

Once Felix has finished his transaction, Bebe offers out her already open bag of candy while the rest of her wares have been jauntily arranged in their individual bags before being wrapped together in one big, brown paper parcel to be toted home. For the moment, she has nothing to say. The offer extended ought to be obvious and speak for itself.

"You're welcome," he says, gravely, taking a candy for himself and unwrapping it more deliberately. It'd be rude to refuse, after all. His face has settled back into that impassive mask - it has to be a weird contrast, alive, flushed with blood and life and in this case faint annoyance, rather than slack and gray in death. "On your way back?" he says, glancing off in the direction that's at least vaguely where the ferry to Staten departs.

Or rather, trying to unwrap it, and mostly ending up frustrated. He looks up at her, arching a brow. You're going to explain this foreign strangeness to me, right?

This is obviously a mistake that everyone makes the first time around unless the secret has slipped from someone else's lips prior to candy consumption. But, it says something about the man's personality, maybe. Having witnessed Bebe, a purported pro, pop hers in paper and all while yet relying on the age-old method of the American peel…

The wee whore reaches out a hand to take the slightly shredded Chinese torture device from between Felix's fingers in order to briefly gesture with it as she explains after tonguing the piece already occupying her teeth to the side in order to speak coherently, "It's not supposed to come off; it's ricepaper. You eat it." She then opens her mouth, perhaps to demonstrate edibility, perhaps to make a suggestion as to gesture that Felix might mimic in order for her to feed him with plain fingertips poised just so.

Without balking, he obediently parts his lips and leans down sufficiently for her to feed him, mother bird with chick, if she chooses. "So I do," he says, once he has it in his mouth, tucking it off in one cheek the better to speak clearly. And then there's the click of him rolling it around his tongue, looking thoughtful.

"What else do you do?" Bebe wonders aloud in a slightly lascivious tone that she may not even rightly realize she's using. It's not exactly flirting, per se, but it's having a good look at the fine line drawn in the sand between what one ought to say and that which one oughtn't. They are, after all, taking up valuable space on the inside of a small shop in Chinatown. What could possibly go wrong?

Oh, how about… gun shots; muffled but still plainly apparent, perhaps having been discharged only a block or two down the street. The summary reaction from the crowd outside is to pitch quite the fit of screaming. Bebe, to her credit, almost doesn't flinch. That's probably Clark Kent's Felix Ivanov's cue to leave in a hurry, no doubt.

"I….." wade into things quixotically. Pine after my straight room-mate like a simpering queer. Fence. Annoy my co-workers. None of which he has time to say. He orients on the sound of gunfire, all but pricking his ears like a terrier at the sound of a rat behind the wainscot. "Excuse me," he says, touching her gently on the shoulder, and heading in that direction. Not at his full speed, but a decent mortal run.

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