2007-03-14: Imitation Crab

Starring:

Elena_icon.gif Lucien_icon.gif Lachlan_icon.gif Stefanie_icon.gif

Summary: In Au Naturale Market, Lachlan breaks the milk and Elena and Lucien talk a bit about books. Lachlan's sexuality comes into question when Stefanie aids him in purchasing some imitation crab.

Date It Happened: March 14, 2007

Imitation Crab


Au Naturale Market

The organic foods market is crowded thanks to the after office rush. People in the surrounding buildings seems to have forgotten to either cook or prepare dinner today, so the place is packed with people trying to find fresh produce to chop up into a salad, or entrees already prepared. There is a loud crash at the back, with a 'CLEAN UP ON AISLE FOUR' being blared through the place's comm system. An employee quickly trots over to that area, bearing a full cleaning arsenal: a broom, a mop, and a dustpan. "Excuse me, excuse me," the harried young man states, brushing past everyone else as he tries to get to the emergency.

Elena sidesteps just in time, having been preoccupied in looking through her list and watching the worker nearly bump into her. Dark eyes watch as he speeds pas the rest. Sighing quietly, she pulls down the earbud phones of her mp3 player and tucks it in her pockets. The young woman is wearing her familiar, black, and worn jacket with the frayed cuffs. It is unzipped in the front, and underneath is a simple, scooped-neck tanktop. The gold crucifix she wears glints on the dip of her collarbones. Instead of wearing her usual jeans today, however, she wears a long skirt, and black boots. It looks like she's also got a short-cropped jean jacket underneath the coat to add an extra protection against the cold.

Lucien blinks, backing up quickly to avoid the employee as well; he bumps into the shelves behind him, but manages to avoid toppling anything over. He is not dressed in much that provides protection from cold: black slacks, a dark green dress shirt. No jacket. The basket hanging from the crook of his arm is nearly empty, save for a box of tea — white, looseleaf — and a bunch of garlic.

And who should be in the middle of that mess, but Lachlan Deatley. He stands staring in bewilderment at the organic milk that is currently splattered over the floor at his feet, and he doesn't move until the employee shoulders in to clean up. Then, the Scotsman shoves his hands into his jacket pockets and grumbles something about faulty shelves. Because it was totally the shelf's fault, right. That shelf totally broke itself. As for what he's /doing/ in a shop like this, well, that's nobody's business but his own. He's dressed in his usual style, not seeming to care whether or not it's cold.

She furrows her brows towards the area where the crash occurs, and she can't help herself. She has to look. For some reason she has rubberneck syndrome bad today. Elena lifts her own basket up, and she walks towards the area of the mess. She passes by Lucien, and does the foot shuffle with him trying to get past given it's so crowded. "Sorry," she tells him with a sheepish smile, and then she continues on her way….and nearly bumps into Lachlan as he emerges from the aisle where he caused the disaster. She blinks at him, blinks at the mess that the employee is cursing at, and then at Lachlan. "Damn, Scottish, you can't be brought anywhere," she teases with a grin. "Whatcha doin' here?" A look around…and her smile wiiiiiiiiiiidens. "Awwww are you planning on cooking Cass -dinner-?"

For a brief moment Lucien's eyes narrow at Elena, but his expression softens at her apology, and his hand waves a vague gesture of dismissal. "Teach me to try and shop at — rush hour," he says with a slight twitch of a smile, French-Canadian accent colouring his words. His path takes him in the direction of the mess, too, though, and his eyes narrow again at the floor, before lifting to see who caused it. An eyebrow quirks upwards. "— And teach you, too, perhaps."

Once he spots Elena — or, rather, almost walks /into/ Elena — Lachlan comes to an abrupt halt and stares like the proverbial deer in the headlights. This stare continues until he's teased, and then it quickly turns into a frown. "Nah," he mumbles, shoulders hunching, eyes shifting to everywhere except the girl he talks to. But he doesn't elaborate or attempt to defend himself. Being caught here by somebody he knows is /entirely/ unexpected. Lucien's input is met with a glower and a grumbled, "Yeah, piss off." Grumpy Scot is Grumpy.

"God I know," Elena groans. "It's so crowded, I can barely see anything. My fault for putting this off at the last minute," she tells Lucian ruefully. When Lachlan answers her, she smiles. "So if you're not, then what are you doing here?" she asks curiously. "I thought you scots were a meat and potatoes sort of people?" Of course, Lachlan may never make it through Jack's torments if he is outed as a vegetarian. That's okay Lach. Elena won't tell him. Really! >.>

"Well, except I need some milk," Lucien replies mildly, head tilting towards the milk shelf — or, rather, the shelf that /would/ have milk, were it not currently splattered all over the ground. "So I cannot — ah, 'piss off' — until they clean and restock the shelf. — They may lack meat, but they do have potatoes." One hand gestures back towards the produce. "Organic, locally grown. The hippy-est of hippy potatoes."

Lachlan is being interrogated about something he does not wish to talk about. This flusters him. His scowl deepens and sours even more. "Doesna /matter/ wha' I'm doin' here," he growls irately. And then Lucien speaks /again/, and though he's really being very gentlemanly about things, the Scotsman is quick to jump to angry conclusions — especially when he's flustered. The mention of the milk shelf sounds like an accusation. "Look, it wasna m'bloody fault, a'righ'? Shut yer hole." It's like a bull in a China shop!

"You really ought to relax a lil', Lach," Elena says with a small frown. "I was just teasing, I didn't mean anything by it." She eyes the ruined shelf, but she spies something at the very end. Walking towards it, and carefully maneuvering her way around the edges of the debris, she searches around….and grins. She reaches out to snag a toppled bottle - but pulling it out reveals that it's one small jug of milk intact. "You got lucky," she tells Lucien with a smile, and hands over the milk.

"I did not say it was your fault," Lucien says, still mild. "Only that I need — ah." Green eyes light with the flash of a warm smile, and he takes the jug from Elena. "— This. Merci."

Lighten up, yeah, right. When one's masculinity is at stake or even remotely in question, one does not "lighten up". Lachlan grunts something that may or may not have been a foul word or two and scratches at his jaw with one hand, casting about for something to get him /out/ of here. Mrrrgh. If this place didn't carry the best non-shellfish imitation crab he could find, he'd never come here again ever. When the milk is produced from the wreckage, he rolls his shoulders and does his best to look very Not Guilty. The best way to do this is to look grouchy. He pulls it off quite well.

Stefanie makes her way down the spiral staircase and smiles to the clerk, who picks up her books and heads out. She places a couple books down on the counter behind her and glances at… oh! Customers!. She smiles sweetly and doesn't bother to interupt them unless she sees someone with that lost look on their faces.

"Mercy?" Elena remarks, looking a little puzzled. And then, realization dawns on her face. "Oh, -merci-. French. Yeah, no problem," she says with a small laugh, sliding her hands in her pockets as she looks over at the Scotsman. She frowns back at him. Ugh. He's so grumpy. And HOPELESS. Maybe she'll get more of a reaction if she kicked him. What does Cass -see- in him anyway? Aside from the fact that he was hilarious when he was go—oh. There you go.

"Ah, sorry — French, yes. Thank you. Danke. Gracias. Nanni. — I slip." Lucien's head bows slightly, a faintly sheepish smile flickering on his expression. His gaze slides from Elena to Lachlan, but he says nothing.
"You travel a lot, eh?" Elena says with a small smile. "That's cool. I figured one day I'd be able to get out of New York on occasion." Ah, dreams. Then again if the world does implode looks like she'll have to leave it sooner if that's the case. Still, she shifts her basket on her arm, and peers at Lachlan as he grumps and lingers around. She still wonders what he's doing here, but it really can't be all that bad, can it?

No, it's not, really. He just makes it out to be worse than it is. Such is life. Lachlan does indeed linger and scowl, but as he's being left alone aside from a few looks his way, he's starting to cool down a bit. The disaster with the organic milk is starting to wind down, and that also helps his disposition. The scowl has gone from angry, bitter, and spiky to brooding. He glances up at Stefanie as she comes down from the staircase, then over again toward the refrigeration at the back of the store. He doesn't get milk, but he still has the imitation crab to get. However, Elena is still here. He can't /shop/ while she's watching. He's idly listening to the conversation between Lucien and Elena.

"I have travelled — some," Lucien replies with a quiet laugh. "Mostly, I sit at home and dream of travelling. A rather incurable addiction to books assists, in that regard. It is like travelling, but with out the — travel part." His smile quirks a touch sheepish again, as he amends, "Well. And without the excitement, and the meeting new people and seeing new things — but the price is right."

Stefanie sits quietly, picking up one of the books. She opens it and starts to read. Looks like she's near the end. he back of the book has the photo of a distinguished bald Indian man. Perhaps a photo of the author. She glances from the book, to the customers and back, just to make sure she's not neglecting them.

"Ah, the Poor Man's Traveler. That's okay, I do the same whenever I can. It's not like I was born wealthy either," Elena says with a laugh, and smiles up at the taller, accented man. "To be honest I haven't even been out of New York. Too busy. Especially when one can't even finish shopping on time." She shakes her basket a bit. "It's taking me a bit to maneuver through the traffic." Her basket holds a box of arroyo rice, a few vegetables, and mushrooms. "I'm going to attempt homemade mushroom risotto tonight but I can't seem to find the parmesan cheese with all the heads around."

Talk of books bores Lachlan immensely, since he's never seen the appeal. His gaze and attention starts to wander again until he spots Stefanie and her … well, /book/. Books, books, everywhere! This one has that symbol dealie on the front cover, though, so it at least garners /some/ recognition. The Scotsman lifts an eyebrow and then, figuring that it must be brought to Elena's attention, he bumps her with his elbow. Who cares about Parmesan cheese? This is important.

Lucien glances briefly around the aisle, and then his hands spread in an apologetic shrug. "If we yelled 'fire!'," he suggests lightly, "perhaps everyone would evacuate and make the task easier." His brow creases in mock consideration. "Or, more likely, not. This /is/ New York, after all."

Stefanie hears the magic words. 'I can't find the…' is the equivalent to the 'May I Help You' riff at a music store. Stefanie stands from her perch, placing the book down. The bok is opened to a page with an illustration of a normal DNA strand next to a hypothesized 'evolved' DNA strand. She pulls a stray strand of hair out of her face and makes her way over to the group. "Hello there!" She says smiling, recognizing Elena from Starbucks, and Lachlan from the park. "Is there anything you need help with?"

"Or they could crush us in a fit of mob rage," Elena says with a grin. "And while it'd probably be an interesting death, I don't think the owner would appreciate it. Plus….well. I'm pretty sure the New York city law code makes that against the law, so I guess I'll just have to look around some more." She looks over as Lach gestures to the redhead with the book, and she looks at it, and looks back at Lachlan with a furrowing of her brows, as if to ask: What do you want -me- to do about it?

Well, pfsh. That's what Lachlan gets for being /observant/ and /helpful/. He frowns a bit, then shrugs and goes back to being a brooding, looming presence. When Stefanie approaches, he looks to her, then glances over at Elena again. "Uh. Yeah." Then? Then, he goes /real quiet/, as though he's about to relay some sort of deep, dark, terrible secret to the store owner. He does his very best not to be overheard, but it's quite possible for someone to pick up on what he says: "Di'ye move yer imitation crab? Couldna find it." This is followed by a helpless look. Halp!

"This young lady was looking for parmesan cheese, as well," Lucien offers to Stefanie, head tilting in indication towards Elena. If he overheards Lachlan's question (which, incidentally, he does) he has no reaction. Mostly because — well, what is so horrible about buying imitation crab? "I would rather not be crushed to death, too, now that I think about it. At least not today."

"Yeah, I am. I'm making risotto," Elena tells Stephanie sheepishly. She gives Lachlan a look, but it's unreadable even as he murmurs to Stephanie. She doesn't hear what he says however, and he is extremely lucky in that regard. She also beams in gratitude when Lucien speaks for her. "Thanks," she tells him warmly. "And yeah, not today. It's nearly the weekend and all." As cheerful as ever, but she waits for direction, tilting her head to Stephanie.

Stefanie looks around and then to Lachlan, curiously. She then listens to Lucien. "They're both in the same place." She walks towards the back, leading them to another refridgerated case. She points to the crabmeat containers, because she doesn't know how much he needs, and with the way he was so secretive about it.. Who knows? Maybe he's got Crabokinesis and needs to practice. She turns to Elena. "How would you like the cheese? Fresh, lactose-free or soy-based?"

When he's /led/ to the fake seafood and /Elena/ is in tow, Lachlan blanches a bit and simply stares at Stefanie as though she just betrayed him. Judas! /Judas/! He doesn't move to pick up the imitation crab to examine it — in fact, he doesn't even look at it. After a few moments, however, he sucks it up, swallows his extremely large pride, and with a look of fierce determination, he steps forward and begins to scrutinize the selection. He's going to /buy this imitation crab/. It's going to be the /manliest thing ever/.

Lucien's gaze flits after the others, a bemused expression on his face as he sees Lachlan's determined look. With a blink and a slight shake of his head, he slips off the other direction to continue his shopping.

She is followed, furrowing her brows and wondering why he's looking so pale. Finally, she is led to the seafood section - which is right near the dairy area. "Fresh, please," Elena says. She can't help but be selective about her ingredients sometimes. Besides, this is the first time she's attempting risotto. And when Lachlan steels his pride, puffs up his chest, and grabs the crab, she is silent. Her eyes are on the tub, and then at Lachlan, and then back at the tub, and then at Lachlan. What was that in her eyes? It's the JUDGMENT LOOK. That's right. She's JUDGING. She, thankfully, doesn't say anything….

Yet.

Finally, she turns away to pick up a block of fresh parmesan cheese, and then looks over at Lachlan. And then, she grins.

"I didn't know you liked pink meat, Scottish."

If he chases her, she's SO RUNNING.

Stefanie blinks at the pink meat comment and tries not to giggle. "Well, he doesn't seem to go the other way… I'd know.. My fathers are gay…" She says quietly as she turns and heads for the counter, to take care of the sales. "Is there anything else you need?"

Elena's commenting on and acknowledging Lachlan's purchase was bad enough, it really was. The Scotsman even turns a glare on her, still holding the tub of fake-meats in much the same fashion as a man might hold a bag of tampons. Then? Then it's made /worse/ by Stefanie's comment. His eyes snap to her, his expression a mask of flabbergasted horror, then he looks at the tub, then at Elena — all this in rapid succession, which threatens to send his head flying off his shoulders. His head, by the by, is starting to turn /red/. "'S no'— ! 'M no— !" Stumble, mutter, stutter, splutter. "'S fer /Cass/!" he protests, but no, it's not, and this is probably very obvious. Your pseudo-girlfriend will not save you now, sir!

Stefanie giggles a bit and steps behind the counter, moving the 'Activating Evolution' book over to a side table behind her. "It's alright. We don't judge anyone here." She smiles good-naturedly. "Will there be anything else?" she reiterates.

"'S fer /Cass/!" Lachlan reiterates a little more forcefully, swinging his face around to glare at Stefanie. "M'/girl/!" This added to /clarify/, just in case the girl got any funny ideas about Cass being anything less than female. Referring to her as "m'girl" is totally warranted in this case, even though he would readily deny that she /is/. See what these people drive him to do?

She stares blankly at Stefanie for a moment….and then she bites down hard on a knuckle to keep herself from just losing it completely. When the redhead moves away, she looks at Lachlan…and….well. Her eyes start glistening a bit. Yes. She is indeed crying. From holding her laughter in. She can't help it. Elena continues to choke out words while she bites down on her fist. "Sorry…Lachlan I didn't….I -so- wasn't…it sounded better in my head! I meant it literally. I mean, the thing IS pink!" she says, and when he continues to protest. Oh god. She can't stop. She leans against the freezer, laughing so hard her sides are starting to split. She's STILL apologizing. But she's laughing.

Stefanie nods and smiles hat sweet smile. "It's alright. And even if it wasn't, who said men couldn't eat imitation crab? is there some Man Guide somewhere that us women haven't seen yet?" She chuckles, waving it off. "Don't sweat it. Your secret's safe with me." She says. She then rings up the crabmeat, giving Lachlan his total.

It's probably not possible for Lachlan's face to get any redder. All the laughter, all the teasing — God, it's like grade school /all over again/. The Scotsman takes his imitation crab and his /real/ crabbiness to the counter, jerks his wallet out of his pocket and hands over some cash to pay for his (embarrassing) grocery. Once that's done and he's got his change, he turns and storms out. Muttermuttergrumblesnarl, "Bugger off." Time to go home and /fume/.

"Oh c'mon, Lach! Have a sense of humor! I didn't mean to piss you off!" Elena says after her laughing fit dies. And then? She'll run after him. She'll pay for her parmesan cheese, of course, stopping by Stefanie's counter when she does. And when her purchases are done, she continues moving on, still trying to catch up to Lach. Awwwww. She really is sorry! But yes, she'll keep following to try and get the big, angry scot all mollified.

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