2007-04-06: Recruiter And Regiment Man


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A retired SAS man speaks with a female USAF recruiter and drives her home.

Date It Happened: April 6th, 2007

Recruiter and Regiment Man

Times Square, Manhattan, NYC

It's a Sunday morning. The building at 43rd and Broadway is dark, there's no one inside at the moment, but this may soon change. A tall woman dressed in jeans, a sweatshirt bearing the letters Air Force, and a winter coat walks up to the door. Keys are in one hand, a to go coffee cup in the other, and a purse rests across her shoulder. Erica opens the door and props it open with a foot as she steps inside and turns on the lights. "Can't believe I forgot that thing in here." The building Erica's stepping into is well marked as the Armed Forces Recruiting Station, and the specific area is the US Air Force section of it.

A little down the street, a big man dressed in a chauffeur's black suit and hat leans against his vehicle (a big black SUV rather than a limo, oddly) and lights a cigarette, enjoying the break between jobs. Of course he notices the pretty woman heading into the recruitment office, it'd be difficult not to. "Takin' everyone these days," Stuart murmurs to himself, grinning, "Wonder if shes posing for a poster."

She's only in there a few minutes; when Erica emerges she's carrying a printed document of some sort and striding across Times Square after locking the door. Her path will take her past the man in his chauffeur's suit, there being a store which sells things she currently finds useful somewhere beyond that point. Her attention settles on him only briefly, just long enough to not walk straight into him; for the most part she's checking out the tall buildings and the spaces between them. The reasons for this are known only to her.

When the woman re-emerges, the chauffeur pays her far more attention than she does him. He watches her and lets out a barely audible wolf whistle when she walks past, chuckling and grinning. What a pig. Stuart then takes a deep pull on his smoke and breathes out, "Wouldn't mind seein' that out of uniform."

She stops and turns in the direction of the whistle when it reaches her ears, her eyes scanning the source of it. The expression to her face is one of mild annoyance. Erica likes to be taken seriously, after all, and not dismissed for her appearance but it's not something she's unaccustomed to. Time spent as a female fighter pilot thickens the skin. "I don't think that's the way to do it," she states, "hailing a taxi needs to be sharper. You've already got a car anyway." This one, at the very least, has some fire and spirit to her, a bearing which suggests she can handle herself, has no trouble issuing orders or making quick decisions under pressure.

"Aye," Stuart says, eyebrows raised, but mouth still grinning, "Price of gas today though, who can afford to drive in the city?" he asks, chuckling. The man fishes a packet of cigarettes from his inside jacket pocket and holds it out, open wrapper with one poking out, "Smoke?"

"No thanks," she replies with a simple shake of her head to the offer of poisonous burning chemicals. She might be about to move along, but something about the voice holds her attention. Her mind tries to place the accent, as far as nation of origin. People from distant places… There were plenty of those at home in North Carolina, but not so many from overseas. "Do you drive for a business, or freelance?"

"Business," Stuart replies, pocketing the smokes, "Bigwigs in the paper industry." he explains, before patting the SUV. His accent is remarkably difficult to place, somewhere between Scotland and Canada, weird, "You a gun-bunny or a real soldier?" he asks, smiling, "I'm Stuart, by the way." he concludes, holding his hand out to be shaken.

"Paper," Erica repeats. She extends her right hand to accept and return the shake. Her grip isn't limp. Eye contact is made, there's something in them which suggests further annoyance at the gun bunny comment. The hand shaking his has a ring on it, one which can be seen as from the Air Force Academy. "Captain Snow," she adds, "fighter pilot and recruiter."

Stuart isn't shy with the eyecontact either, smiling, "Pleasure to meet you, Captain. I'm Sergeant Lauder, retired of the Regiment, if we're sticking with protocol," he says, patting the bback of her hand with his free one, "What did you do to get stuck behind a desk then, if you don't mind me asking? Was it one of the American "don't ask don't tell" hosejobs?" Offensive? perhaps just a litt,e but hes at least outwardly friendly.

"The Regiment," Erica repeats. "That's SAS, Sergeant," she adds, "if I place the term correctly. You might've seen action in the Falklands." His question and the tone it's asked in are considered, they cause another flare of annoyance in her eyes, but she decides to answer anyway lest she leave him with a false impression. "Sergeant, I'm not a lesbian by any means. I chose assignment to New York to pursue a master's degree."

"Might have done, might not be able to talk about it," Stuart chuckles, "Glad to hear you're not a lesbian though, gives the world hope." he adds. His pager, fitted to his belt, buzzes, "Aye, well, no rest for the wicked," he says, after reading the little screen on it, "Can I give you a ride? I'm headed west through midtown if you're going that way."

"True enough, it wouldn't be right to go against the Official Secrets Act, even in another country, and they likely made you give your word, keeping it's the only honorable thing," Erica opines. Her eyes settle on the limo, then the sergeant again. "I'll order the other things I came for and have them sent to me through the internet. I reside east of Midtown. Thank you, Sergeant." While reaching for a door to open it and get in, she takes another look around at the taller buildings and tries to quickly identify the most likely spots to act unseen near them.

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