2007-12-07: Always


Trina_icon.gif Jack_icon.gif

Summary: A battered Irishman finally gets what's coming to him.

Date It Happened: December 7th, 2007

Log Title Always

The Den (renovated) - Brooklyn - NYC

The Den of Iniquity is a dive bar of the highest order situated in the heart of Brooklyn. Her prominant characteristics are cheap liquor, easy women, cigarette burns, and the heavily musky, otherwise indefinable smell that permeates the atmosphere. A bar formed from the rusted, welded-together wings of retired biplanes dominates one long wall of the small, rectangular room. A sheet of thick glass sits atop it, providing a smooth surface to set drinks upon and a barrier between the metal hulks and whatever patrons may arrive that bear delicate sensibilities. Above the bar, someone has taking carving tools to the wooden molding. There's a >>--<3--> etched deeply into the wooden surface, and tiny letters inside the heart. 'T+J always.'

The customers around it are a mix of old codgers nursing boilermakers, Irishmen drinking dark beer and whiskey, working-class men stopping for a nightcap after finishing up for the day (or a bracer on the way to the job) and the barflies that attend to all of them with too-red smiles and lifeless eyes.

The rear of the room is dominated by a jukebox and three well-used pool tables. There are three doors along the wall behind them. Men's and women's restrooms, and a door prominently marked 'PRIVATE' in white-on-red lettering. Freshly installed floor-to-ceiling mirrors cover the rest of the wall on either side of the door.

With a grunt, Trina yanks up another box in the back room and starts lugging it to the front. Once she's there, she sets down the clinking weight upon the bar top, and she sets her slender hands to opening the box. There she finds the liquor that she pulled to restock the bar, filling in the holes there. She's already wiped the whole thing down, and now all that's left is the orderly arrangement of booze.

There's no shuffling of her feet, no lingering lethargy, no fights to balance herself. The work is hard, but not impossible. In black jeans, black boots, and black plain tee? She is undefeatable today. With an extreme tilt of her head to each side to stretch it out, the woman yawns and then sets herself to work. Man. When did 1:30 feel so daggone early?

Ass-first, Jack pushes open the door and backs in with heavily laden arms. A sack of pastries, one of fresh fruit, and a bouquet of orchids are juggled to and fro as he secures the door behind him and steps inside. With a smile on his lips, he pads across the room and dumps his burdens down on the bar, freeing his arms to scoop Trina up for a cuddle and smooch. "Mmm. Looks good in here," he purrs playfully, his eyes locked and Trina and displaying a distinct lack of interest in their surroundings.

Murmuring happily, Trina turns around with a bottle of vermouth in her hand in order to wrap her arms about Jack's neck properly and bestow the smooches that she does so adore. "Hey, baby. Missed you." Once she's got her kiss quota for the minute met, she pulls away and idly indicates to the space over the jukebox with an emphatic jutting of the vermouth bottle into the empty air. There were panties there, once. Now there aren't. If she hadn't burned all of the numbers, save a few actually written on the cloth itself, she'd be a bit more concerned. "What'd you do to my hooker wall?"

Jack releases his lady reluctantly and steps behind the bar in search of an empty bottle. He comes up with an ancient, dusty carafe, which he starts scrubbing out in the sink. "Took it down," he replies. "Only panties I wanna see for the rest of my life are yours, love." With a wink, he sloshes the water out of the carafe, refills it, and plunks the orchids in. The improvised vase is turned this way and that until it's situated just-so with the prettiest side facing Trina.

There's a girly little 'awwwww' sound that escapes Trina's lips at that, and her entire face turns into something a little more giddy and sheepish all at the same time and she turns back to face the bar and finish her moment's task. As she sets down the vermouth bottle in place, she turns back around with a hand reaching up to smooth a stray lock of hair and tuck the ends behind her ear. She turns just in time to see Jack fluffing orchids. Her tongue sticks out at that like some happy puppy, clenched lightly between her teeth. "Jack, darlin', you didn't need to do that! Bouquet at home's not even half dead yet!" That fact doesn't stop her from swaying coyly, however, or from rolling her eyes playfully. She's beyond pleased. 'Didn't need to do that' is certainly translating to 'but I'm so glad you did'.

"Psh. I only do things I wanna do. You should know that." Grinning, Jack hops up on the bar and dangles his legs over the customers' side. He's back to wearing a suit, this one newly tailored to fit his much thinner frame. It's casually cut, comfortable, dark grey, and in the process of being removed. The jacket is folded neatly and draped over the bar, but not before he retrieves a pack of cigarettes. Two get shaken out and stuffed between his lips, then he produces a stick match and lights them both. One is offered over to Trina along with a hesitant smile. "Um. So. I think I'm gonna work with the cops and help 'em pick up the guys I was getting my drugs from."

Taking the cigarette and furrowing her brow, Trina takes a long drag from it before finding the words to say to an admission like that. There is an immediate horror that is readily apparent in her eyes, and there is the tiniest tremor to her hand as she pulls it up with her cigarette again to her mouth and then her voice once she speaks. "The… the cops, baby?"

Jack's shoulders slump slightly, showing that he feels much the same about it. "It was that or have them snooping around me, you, and all sorts of other people. I figure this'll keep 'em happy and get some scumbags off the streets." His lips twist into an unhappy, mirthless smile. "I made them promise that they wouldn't even come near you. Nobody messes with my girl."

Trina's panic becomes all the more apparent as she lets the words start flying out of her mouth at a dizzying pace. Her head shakes now and then, emphatically, and her cigarette-bearing hand moves to flit about her head. "Who says they're gonna keep their promise? You hear all sorts of stories 'bout cops that make all sorts of promises that they have no intention to keep. They lie! And if they really do start lookin' into stuff, then… then…"

"Then there'll be nothing to find, because we'll be gone," Jack replies, his voice a low, calm counterpart to Trina's partial hysterics. "It was the best I could do. It was that or they were going to throw me in jail and make me do it." He ducks his head, embarrassed and regretful to have brought his troubles home to his lady. "I'm sorry, baby."

Moving over to Jack, Trina moves to wrap her arms around him and bury her face in his shoulder, carefully holding her cigarette just far enough away to avoid burning the man. "It's okay. S'okay. Nothin' can be done 'bout it? Nothin' can be done 'bout it. We'll get it figured out." She sighs as she thinks. "You did the best you could. I know that. Thank you. Just lemme know what you need me to do."

Jack snuggles his cheek against Trina's hair gratefully and lets out a soft sigh. "For now, just lay low. No idea what might happen with this mess I'm working on, but hopefully it'll be over soon. Then we can go back to business as usual." He puts on a hopeful smile and gives his girl an extended squeeze, as if keeping his arms around her long enough and tight enough could save her from the outside world..

There's a chuckle at that, even as Trina clings back with every bit the lack of desire to let go that Jack feels, even if he is the far more sharply dressed of the pair. There's comfort here, and knowing that he's alright and here and in one piece is a huge part of that. After a good long time of drinking in his presence, dizzying and warm, the woman actually chuckles. "This ain't gonna start becomin' business as usual, right? 'Cuz I might have to kick your butt if you're thinkin' of makin' a career out of trouble."

"I'll try and be good," Jack teases in reply. He gives Trina a fond, reassuring pat on the bottom and kisses her cheek. Then, suddenly serious, he pulls back far enough to look her in the eye. "I'm still trying to dig myself out of the hole I fell in when I went away. I am doing my best, though. Promise."

Teasing. That makes the truth seem less real. Less overwhelming. Less scary. Trina bumps hack with her hip. Don't make this serious. Rather, she pulls her head back even further so she can get another good drag off of her cigarette and blow the smoke off in another direction. "Good. Cuz it's awfully hard to get my lovin' in when you're busy messin' with other people's holes."

Jack manages to hold a straight face for a full two and a half seconds before he cracks a grin. The grin stretches into a chuckle, which expands into a full-throated laugh. He scoops Trina into his arms and spins in a brief circle, then leans down to kiss her again. "No more holes," he verifies. "Only yours. Forever and ev—ahaha!" He can't keep the giggle in, but that's okay. It's better than thinking about mobsters and federal agents.

There's a giddy squeak as Trina's feet lift the ground, followed by a stream of 'carefulcarefulcareful' as she tries to help support herself and keep her burning down cigarette away from Jack's head. "I like the sound of forever," she murmurs against his lips, a pleased smile curling her own. Eyes closed, deep inhalations of Jack-smell, warm body. World go away, she has what she needs right here. "Specially with you in it. We'll get this bar runnin' 'gain, and it'll be perfect."

"Perfect," Jack echoes thoughtfully. He pulls back an inch and studied the contours of Trina's face. Every pert, perky curve. Every thoughtful crease. "It really would be." Very slowly, he brushes his lips against hers one more time and then sets her feet back on the floor. He drops to one knee in front of her and takes both her hands in his. "Baby. Baby, will you marry me?"


The stunned silence should be more than enough to communicate the fact that Trina was caught entirely unsuspecting. She stares at Jack with her blue eyes wide for some time. In fact, she is so stunned that her cigarette drops to the floor without her even noticing it. She ain't the first one to leave a burn on the floor, at least. Finally, after a moment, she blinks — hard — and shakes her head. When her voice finally finds the air, it follows an uncertain half-chuckle and her forehead is half-crinkled and half-paralyzed in shock. She doesn't even think about the fact that she's forgetting to breathe. "…Me? I… Really?" If this is a joke, it is so not funny. Yet, somewhere in the corners of her mouth, there is a speck of hope that pulls nearly imperceptibly upward.

Jack's eyes open just a fraction wider and he pulls in a quick, hurried breath. He bites down on his lower lip unconsciously, his trademark sign of nervousness. There are hints of fear in his features, but they are quickly being overwritten by a spreading, soothing confidence. He stops his absent-minded chewing and smiles. His brow furrows thoughtfully, highlighting the wrinkles that have aged him before his rightful time. Then, leaning low, he kisses the backs of Trina's knuckles where a ring would be. "Really really," he murmurs, his voice held at a low, throaty rasp that's thick with emotion. "I want to be with you. Forever. Always."

Trina's head rears back at that, and for another long moment she just stares at Jack. On his knees. Proposing. If ever there was a moment to try to remember for all of eternity, this would be a one. She swallows, the sound seemingly louder in that extended silence. Then the slender woman offers a tiny nod. A tiny nod and a timid smile that seems to be having trouble remembering how to curl, and then a barely whispered, "Then I'm yours. Forever. Always."

Once the words are said, Trina offers a more obvious smile and a tiny shrug. He… /Really?/ To make sure, the brunette pulls her own lower lip between her teeth and bites down hard. Okay. Yeah. Not dreaming.

"Oh my God!" Jack's calm evaporates an he comes to his feet, joyously rushing Trina and sweeping her off her feet again. His schoolboyish happiness covers a deeper, more fulfilled contentment that he can't properly show or convey. He settles for kissing her repeatedly and murmuring endearments between. "I love you." (Smooch.) "You're amazing." (Smooch.) "Thank you." (Smooch.)

With a rich, happy laugh on his lips, he spins around in a circle again and then dips her low and looks her in the eye. "You just made me the happiest boy. Thank you."

Jack's overwhelming pleasure is all it takes for Trina to erupt into excited laughter. Every kiss is returned exuberantly as she clings to the man she loves so well. Let the other people of the world trip their way through the darkness, slipping on each other's slick feelings as they bleed out upon each other. Let them have their fancy everythings with their hollow meanings. There is truth, here.

Beautiful, breathtaking truth.

They're going to make this work. When Trina finds her feet back on settled ground, she easily meets his gaze with her own sincere blue eyes. "Sometimes I feel like you're the only thing that's ever really mattered to me, Jack Derex. I love you so much. Gawd! I can't wait to tell people." There's a sudden pause at that, and then she fixes Jack with a considering glance. "I… I can tell people, right?"

"Of course you can!" Jack replies. He gives Trina's shapely hips one more squeeze and then releases her. "Baby, I want you to tell people. Here, watch this." He jogs over to the door, nudges it open with one toe, and leans his head out. "Oi, fuckers!" he shouts. "I'ma get married!"

When the Irishman leans back inside his pub he's wearing a half-excited and half-sheepish expression. He holds his hands behind his back and kicks at the floor like a small boy caught with his hand in the cookie jar. "Uh. I'm sure when you do it, it'll be sweeter. Eloquent and stuff. Plus, you'll be tellin' people we know."

Trina stops laughing just long enough to arch her eyebrow and affix Jack with a dubious stare. Her arms cross over her chest with a growing level of assurance now that she's growing increasingly comfortable with this not being some kind of cruel joke. "Eloquent? /Me?/ Who did you think you just proposed to? You go 'head and take care of it. It'll mean more if you tell Laney anyway, and she's the only one other than Ali that I could think to tell."

The hug Jack gives her is close to being a tackle, though he pulls her against his chest and cradles her with surprising gentleness. "We should tell them together. It'd make me happiest, and you could meet everyone you haven't met yet. My friends will all love you. I love you." He folds her closer in a near-squishing embrace and kisses the top of her head. "Is it okay if I never, never, ever let you go?"

That near squishing embrace she feels all down her side. Her left side. She has never been been more grateful to any man for the ability to feel what it's like to be nearly crushed than she is to Peter Petrelli. The one who fixed her. Well, except for the man who's doing the crushing. But for him, Trina has no words under her command capable of expressing the way that her boyfriend's… nay, fiance's found a way to make her feel like the luckiest and most beloved woman on earth. "It's more than okay," she offers against the crook of his neck, hooking her arms under his and holding him by the shoulder blades as she does so. "'Cuz I sure ain't plannin' to."

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