2009-11-19: Red Sauce Doesn't Stain



Date: November 19, 2009


Red sauce on a white shirt is never a good combination, and so Nicholas sits with Hallis for a bit of idle chat.

"Red Sauce Doesn't Stain"

Washington, D.C. - Blue Door Restaurant

It's lunch time on Thursday in the nation's capitol, which means the restaurant is crowded as politicians, aides, and lobbyists make their plans to cut out a day and a few hours early. Sitting at one of the only tables with a free chair is a woman that looks so out of place it's laughable. Her blonde curly hair is wild and only kept in place by a pair of dark sunglasses balanced on her head like a bandana. Her manner of dressed looks more BoHo chique than Washington dressy. Her silk tank top is overlayed by a large-ish see through tunic, as pants she simply wears a pair of leggings.

The young woman seems to be picking at a plate of food. Mostly it is just cut up and she's pushing around the morsels with her fork as she pours over the contents of a notebook. Her eyebrows are knit together in a frown and with her free hand, she rubs the spot between her eyebrows. "I'll never get this… ever." she murmurs to herself.

"Never get what?" The voice that intrudes one the young woman's thoughts is from a dark haired man that looks clothes wise like he should fit in with all the rest. However the suit doesn't sit well on the broad shoulders, and the rigid posture speaks of someone who isn't quite a politician. Of course the friendly smile on his face could be out of place among all the other busy drones in the lunch rush. "…and is this seat taken? Cause if its not and you wouldn't mind the company?"

Hallis looks up suddenly and drops the pen in her hands. "Uh.. uhm.. a letter, I'm supposed to write." she stammers, obviously blind sided by the man who approached her. "Yes, I mean no, it's not taken. Sure you can take it." She looks around to the adjacent tables, trying to spot which one he is taking it to. Then it registers, he's not taking it anywhere. "Oh! You mean sit here with me? Yeah, uhm… let me just clear this up." And she begins to fold away the mess of scrapped papers littering the table into a blue Tiffany bag sitting by her chair. The notebook? Well that is left open and a scribble of 'Dear Mind Rapist…' begins the scrawl of scribbles and scratches, apparently, the young blonde doesn't quite know what to say to the recipient.

"Sorry ta startle ya," The man replies with a flash of that smile again. "You seem to be the only one open, and eating anything with red sauce in it and walking is just a recipe for a dry cleaning bill." He adds cheerfully as he waits for her to have a seat before settling himself across from the woman. "I don't usually barge into someone else's lunch.." He adds before he glances for just a moment at the notebook.

Mind Rapist?

Ah what lovely things you write. "…the name is Nicholas by the way. Everyone calls me Nick."

"Hallis, Hallis Van Cortlandt." The said is said as though he should know it, and she extends her hand before knitting her eyebrows together and jerking it back. She looks at her hand for a moment, apparently having a flash of memory, then shakes her head. "I'm sorry, I'm being rude. I'm Hallis or Hal, sometimes Hallie." And she extends her hand again, this time in a smooth motion. With the hand, a smile is delivered. "Red sauce is the reason why I stick to white." she says, her smile widening. "Please have a seat."

He almost takes the hand before she jerks it back, bringing a slightly quirked eyebrow from the man. "…bad experience with handshakes?" He quips towards her before he takes her hand the second time when she fully extends it. A single firm shake before he nods once. "Well then Hallis, sorry to ruin your letter writing thoughts but thanks for the place to sit and finish my sandwich." He adds with a flash of a grateful smile as he settles himself in the seat. Does he recognize the name, not off the top of his head at least. "Nicholas Drake, if we are giving last names too." He adds with a wink towards her.

"I have no idea why I just did that," Hallis admits sheepishly, looking down at her notebook, she folds it closed and places her pen on top of it. "It's just been a really odd week or so. Really odd." After the shake, she tightens her hand into a fist and then extends her fingers again, as though experimenting to make sure her hand still worked. "And really, you didn't ruin my letter writing, I can't think of anything to write. It's supposed to be some kind of forgiveness thing, and kind of an apology. I guess. But I don't really feel like apologizing anymore." Her face crumples into a grimace and she shrugs half heartedly. Then a shy smile spreads across her face and she looks into his eyes, "But I'm probably ruining your sandwich now. Aren't I?"

"Oh? Nothing at all?" Nick asks as he starts to unwrap his sandwich. "Sometimes its hard to apologize, especially when you aren't feeling like it." He adds with a amused tone of voice. The sandwich is indeed with red sauce. Breaded chicken and cheese. It looks tasty, but highly unhealthy. Not that Nick really seems to care just how good for him it is. "Well I'd offer to help since you did just let me sit down, but I'm not sure how much you want a stranger writing for you." A pause as he meets the gaze and chuckles. "Pretty women /never/ ruin a sandwich." He returns easily.

Always one to push her responsibilities off on someone else, Hallis brightens at the offer. "Sure I'd let you help!" She responds easily, with a wide smile. "I mean, I have no idea what to say, you know? I'm writing to a complete stranger, so you helping me write wouldn't be cheating that much. Right?" Her eyebrows knit together in a rather worried fashion as Nick bites into the sandwich, almost as if she's expecting the red sauce to drip onto his shirt. Admittedly, her stomach growls a little, but over the din of the restaurant, it goes unheard by most. In response, she lifts her fork and takes a half a bite of the cut up meal on her plate. Apparently at one time, it was quiche.

"Well what are you apologizing for?" Nick asks of the woman after he finishes his healthy bite. No the red sauce stays off of his shirt thankfully enough. It has survived so long at least. "…and what kind of letter are we talking about here. Sincere and heartfelt or just 'I'm sorry' for…whatever you did."

If she were smart, Hallis probably would have made up some lie, but she's not smart so she doesn't. "Well, last night while I was drunk, it was sincere and heartfelt. Now that I'm sober? I'm still angry at this… person… for what she did to me. I don't know why I'm apologizing at all, she should be the one apologizing to me." It's a half hearted explanation, but it's wholly truthful and by the nonchalant way its given, it's not hard to detect that Hallis actually feels more than a little animosity toward the letter's unknown recipient.

"…well…" Nick replies with a raised eyebrow. "Sounds like you really don't want to write the apology so why are you doing it?" He asks curiously of the woman. "I mean you obviously don't like this person who did…whatever they did to you." Pause. "What /did/ they do anyway?" He asks with a flash of a smile.

Nodding emphatically, Hallis seems to agree with Nick. "I don't! I mean, I know I should but I'm trying this whole thing to become a better person. Only, it's not working so well. At least when I'm sober. I just don't care about making this woman feel better, I just don't want her to kill me. You know?" The school of etiquette never really covered the part about keeping quiet, either that or she was drunk that day. "And what she did, she stole a bunch of stuff of mine… Because she was scared. But that's not really an excuse, is it?"

Right. So. This woman stole stuff from Hallis, and Hallis did something to make her scared? Maybe? Nick really isn't seeing the whole picture here but he isn't sure he /wants/ to see the whole picture either. "Maybe you should try writing it when not sober?" He quips before shakes his head and takes a thoughtful bite of his sandwich. "I guess it isn't a good excuse unless you happen to be the one that scared her." Then a slight shrug of his shoulders before he adds. "Well then you are just trying to find a pretty way to ask her not to kill you?"

"That's a good idea," Hallis quips back, giving him a sort of half smile. "I don't know if I scared her, I can't remember." She adds in a rather sober tone. Her large blue eyes avert and she begins to stare at the table cloth, then her relatively untouched quiche. She is quite bothered by this, but doesn't seem to go any further with the train of thought. Instead, she looks up at him again and smiles, "So, what do you do here in Washington? Are you a senator or congressman? Maybe secret service?"

"Can't remember?" Nick asks curiously. Hrmmm, sounds like someone was drunk at the time of the incident. "And yeah, I have those every so often. Good ideas." A laugh then at her question and he glances down at himself. "Do I look like a senator or a congressman?" He asks with a shake of his head. "And no I'm not a stuffed secret service shirt either. I work for a private firm as a security consultant, mostly to businesses with oversea interests."

"Like Blackwater? Or whatever that security company is in Iraq?" Wow. The woman actually knows something. "And yeah, I can't remember. It's part of the really odd week I'm having. Have you ever lost time?" Then she blinks and shakes her head, "Don't answer that. But I swear to god I'm not crazy." She places her hand on her forehead and lets out a groan of frustration. "You probably think I'm insane right now." Quick subject change, again. "Do you have your own set of security agents and things? I was thinking about hiring some security."

"Something like that yeah," Nick replies with a nod before he smirks towards her. "And I've lost time before. Usually it involved tequila." He says as he goes ahead and answers the question anyway with a grin coming to his face. "And no, I don't quite think you're insane. Not quite. Keep going though and you might make it. We do own our own agents yes, but sorry we don't really do private contracting. I can point you at some very good bodyguard firms though."

"Well there was no tequila, or anything. It was a Sunday morning when I left the house, I hailed a cab and poof! I can't remember anything after that." Hallis waves her hand and shrugs, rolling her eyes. "Okay, now we're done with that. I'm going to get your card and I'm going to get the names of the best people that have guards in New York. Then, I'm going to quiz you on Washington. Is there anywhere good to go at night? I mean, I spent last night holed up in my hotel room. I swear this city is like the exact opposite of the happiest place on Earth. How do you stand it?"

"Well thats different," Nick though just shrugs slightly before he chuckles as he pulls out a business card from his pocket and hands it towards her. "There's the card, and I can give you names of the one's I'd recommend right now if you like. As for D.C. well I don't really get out all that much at night. I travel a lot…as for how I stand it? Well I live in New York mostly. That's a good way to stand D.C. at night."

Taking the business card, Hallis smiles and then reads it before tucking it into her purse. "Sure, that'd be really great." She opens her notebook again and flips to the non-letter, preparing to write. "Fire away when you're ready, I guess my lucky charm is working for me to run into you today." She gives him a wide smile and then looks down at her page. First,his name and phone number are written down, then a small title of 'security'. Then she looks up at him and raises her eyebrows curiously, "And you live in New York? Small world! I live in Greenwich Village though my parents and most of my friends live in the Upper East side."

Rattling off a few names of competent bodyguard firms he knows of in D.C. and New York, he seems quite knowledgeable on that subject at least. "I guess it is," He adds with a laugh before he nods once towards her. "Well I live all over, but I have a small place in New York. Not Greenwich or the Upper East side really. My parents live in L.A." He adds with a chuckle. "Even if we are all from Ireland originally."

"Ireland! You are a long way from home." Hallis practically gushes this, and folds her notebook closed. "I'll have to call you one night when there's a good party happening, if you're interested in going that is. So do you go back to L.A. very much? I go at least a few times over the winter." Then she shivers in order to emphasize her point. "It's getting too cold already. My friend Soleil lives in the hills. Her place out there is much better than her apartment in New York. I was thinking about going out that way because it's not like my career is taking off in New York."

"Well just a bit," Nick replies with a shrug of his shoulders. "And if you like, I can't promise you I can go to anything. Work keeps me busy." He adds with a slight smile before be polishes off the last few bites of his sandwich and settles back in his chair. "Oh I get back every so often to L.A., if I don't then the parents come to see me. That never ends well." He says with an amused shake of his head. "Oh? And what career would that be for you?"

Hallis stretches out her leg and twists her foot from side to side. Of course she's wearing a pair of shoes that likely cost more than everything else she's wearing combined. "See these feet? They're pretty famous feet." She lets out a tinkle of a laugh and then puts her foot back down to the floor. "My most recent job was modeling shoes for Jimmy Choo. I think there's a poster in Sak's of my foot. Other than that, I don't do much at all." She gives him a rather sympathetic look then and nods, "I know what you mean about visits from the parental units, they never end well for me either."

"Model. Should have guessed." Nick replies with a shake of his head before he nods once. "Well, I do need to get out of there Hallis. If you want to call then go right ahead, I won't say no to a pretty woman." He says with a wink as he stands up from the table. "Thanks though for the tablespace and the talk."

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