2007-08-29: Prunes

Starring:

Church_icon.gif Eliana_icon.gif Mara_icon.gif

Summary: There is no dried fruit in this scene. But there are two totally classy ladies. And Church.

Date It Happened: August 29, 2007

Prunes


Della Rosa

Happy Hour in the Big Apple is a fine time indeed, especially when it means that normally overpriced drinks are knocked down a nickel or two. But as the hour has just begun, the Della Rosa is still somewhat quiet. That suits Eliana Pasternack just fine.

The pink-tinged blonde sits by herself at one end of the bar, dressed in linen pants and a fitted blouse and looking five years older than her driver's license lists. She idly plays with the thin red straw in her cocktail - some orange-reddish concoction in a low-ball glass.

A woman with deep red hair and fresh scratch marks across her right cheek comes limping into the Della Rosa. She grabs a seat with a quiet groan and a wince. At least the dim lighting hides the extent of her injuries. It would seem the woman's been in a fight of some sort. Mara Damaris scans the bottles behind the bar briefly before muttering, "Gin and tonic," to the bartender. "Double the gin."

Happy hour is every hour when one has nothing better to have been doing than staring through plate glass windows all day; luckily, Lawrence has been able to miss that part, and so he has apparently opted for just the happy hour bit of his day.

The familiar man to at least one of the few here files in through the door, hands in his jean pockets and a particularly preoccupied look upon his face. Church makes a point of avoiding eye contact this time around, so even if he does see Eliana's features again, he doesn't say anything at the moment. Eye contact forgone, at least he's still looking sidelong at people's backs as he passes behind them. Mara's pained figure gets an extra moment of peering, but soon enough the strange man is plopping himself into a seat at the farther end of the barstools. That still means he's not too far away- enough to see Eliana again at the opposite side and throw her a toothy white grin. Hi! I know you. She even gets the brunt of a momentary eyebrow waggling.

Eliana 's wandering eye catches Mara as she enters, and she squints as she takes in the other woman's appearance and drink order, undoubtedly cooking up some sort of story for her. How did she get like that? Why does she need that stiff a drink? Yes, it's a good story - almost good enough for Eliana to throw out her recent research and use it as a springboard, but she isn't established enough to throw a curveball like that at her publisher, and the deadline for her outline in order to get that stipend is creeping closer every day.

In her study of Mara, Church's grin sneaks into Eliana's line of sight and focus. She bristles for a moment out of surprise, then returns the grin; however, hers lacks the older man's…energy.

Mara hunches and huddles over her drink when it's set in front of her. She sucks it through the thin cocktail straw meant more for stirring than actual sipping. She catches the exchange between the two on either side of her - Church and Eliana - and brushes her hair out with her dirty fingers, helping to hide her face when she rolls her eyes.

If he was less tactical, Eliana would have Church as a new drinking buddy! He would have scampered right over if he didn't know her already. "Just a Heineken for me." He pipes up as the bartender finishes serving Mara. He smiles at her, too. Hello! He gets much worse things than eyerolling, ladies. You're going to have to do one better, it looks like.

It would be might difficult, not to mention rude, to have a conversation with Lawrence Church with Mara in the middle. Eliana sends a softer smile Church's way before she looks at the other woman again, ignoring or perhaps oblivious to her previous eye-roll.

What could make the story better? Confirmation, of course. Or perhaps the truth is better than the fiction Eliana has wrought. "Tough day?" Eliana asks with a slight tilt of her head. She clinks the ice in her glass with her straw before she leans away and takes a drink.

Wait. Is he smiling at her now? Mara just can't help but smirk in return. She even lifts her glass. Hey, you. When Eliana addresses her, she turns to look at the other woman and shrugs. "You could say that. It's over, though. So things are looking up."

See, now- a smiling weirdo makes everyone at least a smidge more entertained than they were before; and since that brief glimpse of amusement didn't turn into pepper spray in Lawrence's eyes, it's even better. When the green bottle gets back to him over the counter, Church sinks into his newest 'sit and listen' mode.

"All you have to do now is hope that tomorrow doesn't hold more of the same," Eliana muses idly as she looks to the bar-back, letting her glass linger near her lips before she takes another drink. No, she doesn't expect a complete stranger to unload her life story, even a day's portion of it, but what's a dive bar for if not small talk?

"Oh, it might. But there's no point dwelling on uncertainties." As she finishes her sentence, Mara's expression turns quizzical and she turns back to look at the man on her other side. "Hey, don't I know you, mister?" He just looks so gosh darned familiar…

Church smirks just a little past the edge of the glass bottle at his lips, sharp brown eyes trained on the darker haired woman. "I don't think so. I don't recall having met before.." But then again- maybe he's wrong. Or lying. One of them is mistaken, at least.

From the other end of the bar comes a tune. Eliana hums the first few bars of 'It's a Small World After All' before she takes another sip from her glass and turns her eyes upward. Eavesdropping? Eliana? /Never./

Dark brows lift and disappear beneath redder bangs. Mara gingerly leans forward to reach into her jacket, to the back pocket of her jeans, and procure a business card, which she slides across the bar down to the man with the nice smile. "Call me sometime if you feel like remembering. Or meeting again, for the first time, if you prefer." With a grin, she slides off her stool, leaving some cash on the counter before swiftly downing the last of her glass in one gulp.

The name on the card reads 'Kate Parker' in purple lettering and it's coupled with a phone number and a black symbol. Like half a strand of RNA.

Church lifts his hand to pull the card closer, eyebrows lifting in curiosity and his charming smile quirking to the side. Oho. "Oh, we'll be talking again, I'm sure." He twirls the card between his fingers before tucking it away in one of his front shirt pockets. "Later, Miss Parker." Next time these two see each other, it's certainly going to be…interesting. To say the very least.

After settling her glass on the bar again, Eliana looks back to watch Mara leave and then sets her eyes on Church once more. "You're just a magnet for classy ladies, aren't you? Let me guess: she gives you prunes?"

Church smiles brightly once Eliana deems it okay to speak to him again. Talking to me now, I see. "No, miss Pasternack. She gave me her number, though." Almost as nice. If only they weren't working for the same people.

A grin sweeps across Eliana's face at that. Of course. "Well, congratulations to you, Mister Church. You have obtained the card from a battered lady who thinks she might already know you anyway in a dingy bar - " Eliana glances to the bartender to apologize in the form of a shrug " - and for that you should be commended…I guess."

"I'm inclined to think that she was more…battlescarred than battered." The tip of the beer bottle is motioned in the blonde's direction before it wanders back to Lawrence. "I have never seen her before. She must have been blinded by my studliness and just could -not- resist." Yeah. That's what it was.

"Ah," Eliana says, eager for the retort. "Then why, Mister Church, did she not stick around to bask in it? Why didn't she try to convince you to take her home tonight, if you're so irresistible?"

"She had a long day. Time for a drink before going home, and no time to be flirting. The easiest way out is obviously giving me her number." Church lifts a hand to pat lovingly at his own pocket. "That way it's easier to meet again on our own terms." He smiles as he finishes the explanation.

Eliana lifts her drink and bows her head, kow-towing to Church's wisdom. "My apologize, oh great sage. I should not have been so bold to have doubted your experience." She grins, unmistakably amused, as she takes another drink, polishing off her contents of hr glass.

Church sits up straighter and nods sagely to match his new title. "Experience is paramount. And judging by how old you girls thought I am-" There is a pause wherein the man holds back a laugh. "-I have a lot of it. You can't fake something like that."

Offense colors Eliana's expression, turning it from amused reverence to indignation. "Hey, now. That was all…whatever her name was. Kitty." If it weren't for all that innuendo, Eliana might not have remembered it. "You're only old enough to be my dad," Eliana admits with a shrug, but she's grinning again. A wave to the bartender sets him making another of whatever it was she was drinking.

Church winces visibly at that. Just a little. All of a sudden there is music. Cell phone music. I'm a walking disaster, I'm a demolition man~. "I hope I never have kids. More reasons to call me creepy…" He halts his conversation to dig the little black phone from his back pocket, barely glimpsing at it before putting it away again. "Well, it's been fun, miss Pasternack." Lawrence leaves some money under his empty bottle before he stands up to pack and go. "I have work to do. There is a dire paper emergency." Not really, but as long as it sounds ridiculous.

"Up, up, and away," Eliana mumbles before she lifts her new drink in a silent toast to Church. She won't keep him here, but neither is she in any rush to leave herself.

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