With a Little Help From My Friends


adam_icon.gif eileen_icon.gif lola_icon.gif odessa2_icon.gif

Scene Title With a Little Help From My Friends
Synopsis Adam and Odessa both run into someone they didn't expect to - each other. The doctor and Lola are introduced, and Eileen eavesdrops.
Date September 16, 2009


Brooklyn is located on the westernmost point of Long Island and shares its only land boundary with Queens. The East river borders and defines the borough's northern coast, Coney Island, Brighton Beach, and Manhattan beach are to the south, and the Narrows separate it from Staten Island to the southwest.

Downtown Brooklyn is one of the NYC's largest business districts. Between the Bridge and Prospect Park, brownstones, townhouses, and high-end restaurants are dominant. The culturally diverse communities of Williamsburg and Greenpoint are snugged against the East River to the far north. Close by are far more criminally active neighborhoods such as Brownsville, Crown Heights, and Bushwick. Regardless of the social situation, the so-called Borough of Neighborhoods is packed to the gills in post-bomb NYC.

Darkness is a hunter's best friend. Unfortunately for Eileen, the hunter all too often becomes the hunted here in New York City, and with Feng Daiyu on the prowl it's safest to stalk the streets when the sun is high in the moon blue sky and shadows are confined to the mouths of alleys. Where the Red Hook district ends and the adjacent neighborhood begins, a large black bird with rumpled feathers the colour of an oil slick sits on a lamppost, sunlight glinting off the metal band it wears around its left leg.

Eileen is there, too, dressed in a dark brown jacket that conceals the shoulder holster and pistol she wears beneath it, and a pair of faded denim jeans sitting low on her slim hips. Although she's in the process of ordering a snow cone from a street vendor at the corner, her attention is only partly on the man standing beneath the umbrella as she counts out the change in her palm. The rest is focused on what the raven can see from its perch, beetle black eyes scrutinizing the street below with the hungry acumen of starved predator.

Walking in the view of the Raven is one Adam Monroe and Lola. There were a few other men with them before, but they're with the car, mostly because Michael got annoyed at Lola. She has that effect on people. Adam, however, walks along casually in Brooklyn as he says, "Well, there's plenty of apartments here..and it straddles between the squalor you like, and the quiet I prefer." he informs Lola. He, himself, doesn't see Eileen and even if he did, there's no telling that he'd immediately recognize her at the moment. Rather, he says, "Tut tut, looks like rain."

Lola left the car, sticking her tongue out at Michael as she goes. "It's alright, I suppose. I been thinkin, so long as ya don' stick me near no poodles or nothin, maybe some place ya like might be better," she suggests to Adam, looking around. "I mean, if yer gonna be spendin' as much time there as ya say yar." Plus, he's paying for it. Lola finds no reason whatsoever that she can't taste a bit of the expensive life on his dime. "Unless ya rather I stick ta my own people, which is just as understandable…" She gazes upward, catching sight of the Raven as she tears apart a salty pretzel. She rips off a piece, tossing it up toward the bird to see if he'll swoop and get it like a seagull gets antacids. Which is funny. "Didja bring an umbrella or do we gotta call that sour puss ta bring us the car?" Okay, so maybe she's getting a little used to getting spoilt.

A raven is a raven is a raven, and a silver sequin-covered bag glinting in the sunlight still grabs a bird's attention. The bag is slung over the shoulder of a dark haired woman wrapped tightly in a bright teal shawl. Dark sunglasses shield tired eyes, relieving the need to squint. Something else glints around the woman's neck - a blue gemstone, the centrepiece of a choker. Through the raven's eyes, Eileen would recognise that piece of jewellery anywhere. And when the glasses are lifted up so the woman can check her reflection in the window of a watchmaker's shop, there's no mistaking Odessa Knutson. Her frame is bonier now than in months past, her eyes rimmed red and puffy, underlined by dark bags. She may not be in a gutter, but she certainly isn't well.

It's not easy staying away from New York City, Odessa's found. Something about it keeps calling her back. Maybe it's the ease of disappearing into the crowd, being just another nameless face in the mass. Maybe it's the familiarity. She glances up at the sign above the shop and furrows her brows. Then again, maybe it's something else entirely. Lost in her thoughts, she almost dismisses the familiar voice behind her as wishful thinking. There are more people in this metropolis than just him with an accent like that, after all.


Odessa sneaks a peek over her shoulder and her eyes pop wide open. "Adam?" She pulls her mirrored D&G shades back down over her eyes before jogging up to the man and his companion quickly, high heels clapping her approach on the pavement.

A flurry of buffeting wing beats carries the raven down to the pavement and the piece of pretzel, which it studies with a cocked head, staring down the length of its beak. Claws scratch against the concrete as it takes a single hop forward and jabs at the food experimentally before picking it up, tossing its head back and pulling the pretzel down its gullet in a single gulp. This done, it voices a hoarse croak of what might be thanks and darts a brief glance in Odessa's direction, the glimmer of silver having caught its attention in the way that shiny things do.

Eileen hangs back in shade, meanwhile, snow cone in one hand, tiny plastic spoon in the other. Neither Odessa Knutson nor Adam Monroe are on the short list of people she hoped to find this afternoon, but she'll take what she can get, listening to the beginnings of their conversation not through her own ears but the bird's.

Adam is in the middle of a sentence when he hears his name. "Well, I suppose, but I think Mich-…" and then there's an Adam. He looks up as he notices the woman jogging up to him. There's a momentary frown as he slips through a Rolodex to try and figure her out before he can determine if she's a threat or not. But it doesn't take long, as dishevelled and broken as she appears now, he remembers Odessa. He pauses, momentarily before that easy, cordial smile slips onto his features, "Odessa." he says in an almost bright way.

Lola raises a single brow as the woman comes running toward them, no longer paying any attention to the raven. She fed it, she's not it's mother. It's not like she has to give it attention to, by law or anything. Neglect laws. Pfah. "Seems yer all sorts a popular, sugar," Lola notes, mawing down on her pretzel as she watches the girl approach. "What is it wif you an blondes, anyway?" Sabrina. Kaylee. Now this 'Odessa'.

After all this time, Odessa doesn't have a damn clue what she's supposed to say to him. And after having seen the mess she looks in the window pane, she's actually ashamed. It's a blow to the ego, but a shot in the arm for the willpower. "I," she breathes out, trailing off for a moment. "It's been ages." She turns her head to regard the other woman. "Blon-" She reaches up to run her fingers through her hair. "Are my roots showing?"

Adam turns towards Lola and looks at dryly after her blondes comment. It's odd, any time women seem to share a common characteristic around him, he's accused of chasing them. In the end, though, he turns back towards Odessa lightly and reaches forward. He takes her hand, but rather than shaking it or kissing it, he lifts it lightly over her head and encourages a bit of a spin. When he first met Odessa outside of Level 5, he had been…different. He wasn't looking for disciples, he wasn't building, he was just…free. But this is Adam again, and every person is a piece to put on his board and it doesn't take even a moment for him to recognize how to put Odessa back on the board, "I've looked for you." he says, with concern and sincerity, or what passes for it in Adam's vocabulary, "I worried." it's only now he makes introductions, "Dr. Knutson, this is Lola. Lola, this is Dr. Knutson." he leaves relationships and pasts vague. People will offer what they want.

Lola's watching, there is no doubt about that. Why shouldn't she be? She needs to be aware, for one. And for two, she needs to see if he's really the sort to behave. There's always much to be learned from watching - especially when you rattle some cages and then watch the results. "Howdy, Doc." Yes, just like that, Odessa is reverted to 'Doc'. "Nevermind 'bout yer roots, sugar. Hah. Doctor. So fancy."

It takes a moment for Odessa to catch what Adam's encouraging, but she does spin for him, her white sundress flouncing as she does. "You looked for me?" The tone of the question is polite, but if he could see past her glasses, he'd see the dubious look in her eyes. "I worried about you, too." For a while, at least. Her lips twitch momentarily into a polite smile to Lola. "It's nice to meet you." Fancy. Right.

Adam mms, "I did. Our last meeting.." he pauses as he talks to Odessa casually, "I had just gotten out. You might say I was a bit PTSD'd. I handled it wrong, yeah?" he shakes his head, "And when I got things right…I wondered where you got off to. But I had no…" he shrugs his shoulder, "No string. No trail of breadcrumbs. I went to Europe for a bit, you know? Visit the old roots and all that. Seemed like you would have liked it."

Lola listens, and this definitely has an old girlfriend feel to it. If not more. If Lola hadn't been charged to listen to this, or if she weren't dating Adam, she might be uninterested. As it is, she looks mildly uninterested, leaning against a nearby building as she continues to chow down on her pretzel. But she's watching and listening.

Eileen scrapes at shaved ice covered in blueberry-flavoured syrup and directs her gaze outward across a river of yellow taxi cabs, occasionaly interspersed with city buses, unmarked police cars and other commuter vehicles, none quite the same, though all are similar in terms of being utterly unremarkable. She turns away from the group, showing her back and the nape of her neck to anyone who might happen to glance over at the snow cone stand.

Apparently having grown tired of scavenging for crumbs between the cracks in the pavement, the raven launches off the curb and onto the spigot of a nearby fire hydrant, its once vibrant red paint now faded and peeling, and begins to preen the feathers beneath one overlarge wing, using its beak like a comb.

"I probably would have liked it," Odessa admits. Her eyes roam Adam up and down once, perhaps sizing him up. As though a glance might reveal his intentions. "If you didn't have any lines on me, did you have any for bigger fish, as they say?" An unconscious glance is thrown toward Gray and Sons. "I've kind of…" A shiver runs through the doctor's body and she pulls her shawl tighter around her to ward off the chill. "Kind of lost track of… things." The way she says it, it's posed more as a question than as a definitive statement. Things. People. Everything?

Adam asks, "Which bigger fish? There's always bigger fish out there." he says, "Hard to say." he pauses, "Things don't look like they're working out too well for you. Why don't you walk along with us?" and there's a laziness to the question, like it's all at once an invitation for a walk and…an invitation to join. An invitation to belong, "It's always good to have a Doctor around, yeah? We're looking for an apartment for Lola, here." he says, "She lives in a warzone and has only just now seen the benefit to living somewhere where you don't have to worry about being shot all the time."

Lola isn't about to let him play this game, but she sees waht he's doing. She wrinkles her nose in displeasure. "I like where I'm livin' just fine, yer the one what keeps sayin' ya wanna move me closer so ya kin drop in all the time." She pushes off the wall, consenting to follow, but forcing a breath inside of her - a silent, undetectable thing - to remind herself of things.

Oh, we're walking now, are we? Her snow cone only half-finished, Eileen tosses the paper cup and spoon into the designated rubbish bin and rubs one small hand over the back of her neck with a glance askance at the raven on the fire hydrant. A moment later she's adjusting her jacket's collar and sleeves, occupying her hands with idle gestures as she waits for Adam and his entourage to get a move on.

"That's something I would think you'd be an authority on," Odessa murmurs with a hint of sardonic amusement. Lola's statement causes one blonde brow to quirk up over the frame of her sunglasses. "Ah, so she is your… How would you put it? Lady friend? Then I'm sure you'll both be happier if she's somewhere quieter." The dyed-brunette sways forward ever so slightly as she begins to take that first step to follow when she spots a bird on a fire hydrant. She fishes into her purse and pulls out a small package of Saltines. "Just a moment." She splits the celophane wrapping and moves to crouch in front of the fireplug, holding out one cracker to the raven as she lifts her glasses up to perch atop her head with a bright smile. "I do so love birds," she explains to Adam. "I feel a sort of kinship with them, you know. Well, usually with the caged ones." She winks as she leaves the cracker for the avian. I see you. You see me. "Okay!" She bounces back up to her full height and turns to follow Adam and his pretty girlfriend.

Adam chuckles a bit at Lola's attempt to mark her territory and Odessa's own attempt to be diplomatic. "Lady friend?" he pauses, "I would say we're between the stages of dating and…what do kids call it these days, going steady?" he shakes his head with a chuckle, "But she's cute when she's jealous." he pauses as Odessa decides to feed the raven and says, "What is it with you women and stray birds. You know, you're only encouraging them to breed more." he pauses, "So, where do you find yourself at, Odessa? Somewhere nice? Perhaps we should look for an apartment for you too." and just like that, in the matter of minutes, does Adam begin to insinuate Odessa in his sphere of influence, like she's been one of his minions all along.

"I just accept handouts. Not that I don' gotta work for 'em, but still." She shrugs a bit, reverting to her playful self. "Maybe I'll feel guilty later on, an have ta do some work or somethin'. Who knows. Fer now I'm alright with things as is," She goes silent, taking a moment to use her nail to remove some food from between her teeth.

"I work for myself these days," Odessa insists. She looks toward the apartment building, and then back down the street the way they came. "It is awful close," she murmurs under her breath. For a long moment, it's obvious she's debating internally with herself. Finally her shoulders sag ever so slightly. "I suppose I could do you a favour or two in exchange for rent…" A handkerchief is tugged out of her purse and pressed underneath the woman's nose as she stifles a sniffle. "I assume you'll be wanting my medical services?"

Adam mms a bit at the self-employment bit. He seems a bit dubious at the claim, people are always claiming that. He pauses a moment and smiles at Odessa lightly, "Perhaps so." he says, but uncommittal at what he wants. But that's Adam, isn't it. Who's to say what or when he'll want his due. Still, he walks the two women into the apartment building. It's nice, not luxurious, but clean and well maintained. The apartments are slightly bigger than normal by New York standards. These aren't penthouses, but they're very respectable. "See?" he points out, "Even has its own dishwasher."

Lola proceeds to look around, checking in the cabinets and peering into each of the bedrooms. She's not interested in closet space. She's interested in the windows, the doors, and other such things. "I'd have ta do an awful lotta work on it," She comments thoughtfully. "Door's real flimsy, locks ain' nothin, windows too…." Of course. Her mind goes immediatly to trying to find a way to make the place hard to break into. "I ain' got no furniture a my own…an ya said I had ta have a television, right?" She asks, tilting her head once more toward Adam, curling a finger in her long, dark hair.

The front doors are as far as Eileen goes. Without a crowd to camouflage her pursuit, she lacks the ability to tail Adam and the two women with any real degree of efficiency. She adopts a post on the stoop of a tenement two buildings down and fishes a cigarette from her jacket's interior pocket, which she purses between her lips, content to wait and smoke on the steps until the trio reemerges into the daylight.

"It's lovely, Adam," Odessa's quick to respond. "If you can set me up with a place, I'll take it. But I want my own space. I need my quiet. You understand." She absently wanders toward one of the windows and stares out. "Can you furnish it? I can't take my old stuff with me…"

Adam smirks a bit to himself, now on his way to his real estate license and being asked to furnish two apartments. He hmms, "I'm sure we can get you some furniture, I don't think it'll be anything special, but certainly functional, sure." he walks around the apartment a bit, "So, I'm guessing this means you both rather like the space?"

Lola sets her little tush on the window sill, crossing her legs easily as she looks around once more. "Spoze so. I don' need much, myself. Cept maybe ta make the security better - I swear, I don' think most folks realize how easy it is to break in these days," She grins a bit more, mischevious-like, to Adam. He knows how easy it is!

Real catch this one, eh? Odessa casts a glance toward Lola before turning her attention back to Adam. An-y-way… "Simple is fine. If you wanna give me cash, I can pick out my own. Either way. I should be able to supply my own medical equipment… I think. Well, I could use some help transporting it. But I can secure things I'll need, if you want to me to operate in the sort of capacity I used to."

Adam nods thoughtfully at that. He glances towards Lola, but doesn't appear to share her amusement. He turns back towards Odessa. "Alright.." he pauses, "Well, I'll work on that. Get you a reasonable budget…a couch, a table, some chairs, a bed…" he waves a hand a bit, "That sort of thing. I'm sure we can get you some help moving your equipment around." he claps his hands toghether, "See? It appears it works out well for everyone."

Lola grumbles as no one seems to share her point of view. She sits back, idly looking out the window. "See if I ain' breakin' into your place tonight…" she mumbles, so they may or may not hear her. She's just discontent at the moment!

It's clear that Odessa's done a lot of growing since Adam last saw her, but for a moment, she pauses and looks at him with that trusting, wide-eyed innocence she held back when she was the physician on Level 5. "You really didn't have to do this for me." She shakes her head once and then says sincerely, "Thank you."

Adam smiles at Odessa for a moment, chuckling a bit to himself. "You're welcome." he says as he says, "Well, now that we're all happy.." he ignores Lola's minor tantrum, "So…shall we go now? We'll get you the forms to sign and all that, yeah?"

Lola pushes to her feet, dusting off her rear in case there is any dust there, moving to follow. "That's a good question actually, English," she says, letting her tantrum fade once she got that little bit of anger out. That and a revenge plan helps too. "Exactly what name ought I be puttin' on these forms? An employment? An….e…everythin?" She can be FBI! She can also be former convict and murderer.

"You know I don't actually exist, right? Gonna be awful hard for me to sign anything," Odessa reminds gently. She crosses her arms under her chest, shifting the position of her purse with the roll of her shoulder, and quirks a brow.

Adam pauses as he glances between the two women and says, "Alright." he says, "Then we'll see what I can do to get these things signed alternatively." he shakes his head a bit and purses his lips, but eventually says, "It'll all work out."

Lola raises her hand, waving at him a bit. "I'll just use mah fake one then, just….don' let NYPD IA get ahold of 'em, yeah? Might cause some problems." She winks at Adam as she starts to move toward the door, reaching up to run her fingers through his hair just a bit as she passes, but she doesn't move out of sight or anything.

"Of course it will." Odessa smiles indulgantly and holds a slip of paper out to Adam with a number scrawled on it. "When you've got things figured out, call me?"

Adam nods a bit, "Of course, will do." he says thoughtfully to Odessa. Then glances at Lola, "Alright, why don't we all get out of here. Why don't we go get a bite to eat. I'm sure the men are hungry too." he comments off handedly.

Men. Not Man. Lola decides to have a little bit of fun with the situation. Nothing aggressive, just plain old teasing with no real harm meant. "Men?" She asks, looking to Odessa. "Yer a men, sugar? Dayum, best lookin' trannie I done ever seen. Huh. Never can tell in this city. Sure, darlin, food sounds good. Do I gotta wear a dress wherever we're goin?"

That derailed Odessa's entire train of thought. She pauses in mid-step and shoots a look in Lola's direction that's easily missed behind the mirrored glasses. Her lips purse tightly and rather than dignify the jab with a response, she simply adopts a terse tone. "It was nice to see you again, Adam. Nice meeting you, Lola." The doctor then heads back the way she came ahead of the other two to give them some space. Time to go home and gather her things. And her thoughts.

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