2008-02-22: Shopping Trip


McAlister_icon.gif Jamie_icon.gif Sierra_icon.gif

Summary: Ali takes Jamie shopping for clothes, and they run into the other person who offered Jamie a place to stay.

Date It Happened: February 22nd, 2008

Shopping Trip

Garment District

Sunday, February, in the garment district? It's cold - but it's still crowded.

Hawkers and dealmakers, shopfronts and warehouses - all getting ready for store openings on Monday. New fashions and old, piles of fabric on trucks - it never sleeps. Not even here.

But, if you're a native? There's a few tricks to the Street. Know where to go and you can pick up seconds or vintage items, even a few things 'dropped from a truck' and definitely a handful of … 'homages that look a lot like the real thing', especially if you're looking for a bag.

In the middle of this happy chaos is a certain late-night DJ, rummaging through a second-lot table off of the main drag, a half-full canvas shopping bag on the rough concrete floor next to her. "Hey, kiddo - what'cha think?" … it's blue. There's a bow. It wouldn't look out of place on the set of Polyanna. Ali's grin, however, is impish. She's not serious in the least - "It'd look /great/ on you, huh?"

Jamie is looking around with fascination. She knows the city pretty well, but this isn't exactly her usual neighbourhood. She looks back to Ali at the question and blinks. She giggles, shaking her head quickly, "No way. Maybe when I was five."

At this place, night or day, you can occasionally find a certain reporter who knows a thing about men and acorns. Sierra LeBlanc is trotting her way down the street, looking for the bargain or the fallen shirt, jacket, or anything else she might like.

"Okay, okay - fine." Ali grins, holds up - now, see? That's a fashionable coat, there - "So c'mere and try this on." She turns, offers it - "What else do we need, you think? Shoes, probably? I know a guy - we can probably hook you up. Jeans, too, I guess." So far, they've picked up a few things. Not a ton.

The DJ is by no means /rich/ - but her bargain-hunting hasn't been bad at all.

Jamie pulls off her current coat for a moment as she steps over, trying on the new one. She grins and says, "Yeah, it's nice." She takes it off to hand back, hurrying to get back into her own coat, and says, "Yeah, gotta get more pants. Some that won't shrink when they're wet. Maybe a leotard too, can I get one of those? Ain't been able to practice proper since the circus." Then she wrinkles her nose, "Do I gotta get shoes? I hate shoes." That's when she notices Sierra. She blinks, and then waves energetically, smiling.

Sierra picks up a blue frilled dress and smiles. "Ah, oui. This one shall be perfect!" Perfect for what, though? Perhaps even she does not know…yet, anyway. She starts, and then stop as she sees Jamie. She waves to the girl, heading on up to her. "Cherie! Mon Cherie! Bonjour! How are you this fine New York day?"

"Yeah, you gotta do shoes." Ali rolls her eyes. "Look. You can't go barefoot to school." She grins, and offers a wave to the oncoming reporter. "Uh. Hi." Back to Jamie - "I'll grab this one- anything else you see you want here? Yes, then shoes - and we'll get you a leotard, too." She pauses. "circus?"

Jamie smiles up to Sierra and says, "Hi! This is Ali, I'm staying with her a while. Ali, this is Sierra, she's a reporter." Then she looks back up to Ali and nods a little, "Oh, I guess. Ok, but nothing heavy. Shoes feel like a weight on my feet." Then she nods quickly again, "Yeah, my dad's circus. My mom and I were acrobats." She looks around a moment more and then shakes her head, "Don't think so."

Sierra smiles a little at Jamie, shaking her head. "Ah, staying at her place?" She chuckles. "Strange little girl. I offered my place as well, didn't I?" She smiles widely. She doesn't sound offended, just curious. She smiles and nods at Ali. "Oui. I do believe we have already met. That one night at the park, oui?" She nods, looking back to Jamie. "If I remember correctly, you're quite the acrobat."

Odd, the DJ's smile, there - there's something wry about it. "Sure. Yeah, I remember - " Ali reaches out and rests a hand on Jamie's shoulder squeezing once. "I'ma go pay for these, and see about shoes, right? Just up a couple of stalls - see, there?" She points - but is already moving, fishing in her bag for a very battered guy's wallet, calling to the fellow manning the table, "Hey, Eddie - twenty for the coat?"

Jamie bites her lip at that and says, "Oh, yeah, sorry. hen, I thought Joe loved me, that he was like my dad. But he was just lying and tricking me. Ali got him to tell the truth." She looks up to Ali again and nods quickly, "Ok."

Sierra nods to Jamie. "Well, cherie, my offer still stands. If you ever wish to live at my home, you can. Or just stay over night. It gets awfully quiet there at night." She smiles. "Just let me know."

"Forty, hon."

"Twenty five. C'mon, Eddie, you owe me anyway."

"Since when?"

The haggling goes for a moment - they settle on thirty, and Ali scoops up that bag, stuffing the coat in it, and heads for the far table. Mmm. Shoes.

She calls back, "something /light/? So… huh." Rummage.

Jamie nods quickly to that with a smile, "Thanks. I'll 'member!" She takes a few steps over to where Ali is, glancing back as if expecting Sierra to follow. "Ali knows about..um.. what I can do, too." Then she looks back to Ali and nods quickly, "Yep! Dunno what kind."

Sierra smiles softly and nods at Jamie, indeed following her as she leads. "Well, I would imagine that that is important for her to know, eh? And hey, she still likes you, which is very important." She says nodding.

Ali flashes Sierra a grin. "She's a great kid. So. What do you think - black - " A pair of simple mary janes - "Or brown?" .. simple flats. Both /roughly/ in Jamie's size. Roughly. "And /mostly/, kiddo, you eat. I've noticed." It's teasing, amused.

Jamie nods quickly to Sierra, smiling. She looks to the shoes as Ali holds them up and bites her lip. Then she points to the black ones, "Those, please."

Sierra smiles to Ali. "I know she is. One of a kind, she is." She says with a nod, stepping back for a moment, letting them decide on shoes. This isn't her business really.

McAlister nods, holds them out - "Try 'em on, kiddo - they need to fit, you know?" She sets the other pair aside, offering Sierra a sheepish smile. "so.. you know about.." She waves vaguely at Jamie. "You know?" She clears her throat. "Yeah."

Jamie takes the shoes, sitting down on the ground where she is to pull off her current shoes and try on the new ones. "Uh-huh," she answers, even though the question wasn't aimed at her. "She's even seen me do it."

Sierra smiles a little at Ali, nodding. "Oui. I've seen her do it, as le cherie has said. I found out when I was doing some research on le break-in. A little while ago now I do suppose."

"Break-in?" Ali blinks - and looks to Jamie, then back. "What break-in?" She takes a breath. "You haven't.. told anybody, have you?"

Jamie looks up to Ali and says, "Was doin' a house almost every day for weeks 'fore you got me outta there. That's the job Joe was makin' me do, remember? It's ok, she said it was all an… a non… something." She stands up, walking around a little. "Shoes are kinda big, but stay on ok."

Sierra nods at Ali. "Oui. All le break-ins." She says quietly, look between Jamie and Ali. "I have made sure she has been kept anonymous, though, so no need to worry any. No one will ever know!"

Ali's expression gets a bit worried - and she looks to Jamie. "if they don't fit, kiddo, we'll find another pair, right?" But she trails fingers over other shoes, distracted. "You're a reporter, right?"

The DJ shakes her head. "Don't get me wrong, I'm grateful and stuff - but why are you doin' that for her? Wouldn't it, you know, make your career? That's a heck of a story."

Jamie nods quickly to Ali and says, "Ok." She kicks off the shoes, not seeming to mind sock feet against the cold pavement as she passes the shoes back to Ali. "Just a little smaller." She looks between Sierra and Ali again at those questions, but stays quiet.

Sierra watches Jamie for a few moments before looking back up to Ali. "First of all, if I didn't allow her to remain anonymous, she would never have told me the story. But also, really, how many people would believe a story about a girl who can turn into water anyway?" She doesn't admit that she didn't at first. "It may make my career, but at what cost? If they were to really find out about Jamie, who knows what they would do to her. I've come to care too much for her to let something happen." Not to mention that she's more similar than she's letting on. She can't do anything with water, but she can do something.

Ali.. nods. And goes back to looking through shoes, as she murmers - "Yeah, well - that says a lot for you. Most people I've run across wouldn't have thought twice." She shrugs, then - "I guess I'm glad you're different." She sets her bag aside to dig deeper into the shoes, there - "Sorry - I worry, you know?"

Jamie nods quickly and says, "Sierra's great. So're you. Both'f you've been really nice and everything." She smiles happily as she says this, seeming happy to have people looking out for her.

Sierra smiles a little bit at Ali. "Cherie, I am more different then you might care to know." She chuckles and gives a little wink to Jamie before nodding once more. "No need to apologize. I understand how you feel completely." She smiles at Jamie.

"Yeah? Heh." Ali shakes her head. "You're french - that's different enough." That comes with a wink, and a good-natured tone - teasing, more than anything. She holds up a pair of shiny, patent-leather saddle shoes - "How about these, kiddo?"

Jamie looks up to Sierra amoment curiously, but then shrugs a little. She looks back up to Ali and nods quickly, "Those, yeah!" She takes them, sitting down again to try them on. A few moments later she stands up, walking around, and says, grinning, "Perfect!"

Sierra shakes head. "Non…moi, I am French-Canadian! Big difference. Much closer to you Americans." She says with a soft grin, to show that she's teasing too. "Would you believe me if I said that I'm…gifted, liked Jamie?" She says seriously. "I can't…do what she does, but there's something I can do too."

Ali smiles to Jamie - "You like 'em? Then we'll grab those - " She breaks off as Sierra adds that - and bites at her lip, expression a bit distant. "Yeah? Yeah." Again, she leans on the table. "Right." She can't hide the worry - or the sudden raised guard. "So that's why you're not, you know, turning her in, too?"

Jamie nods quickly to Ali, smiling. She slips the shoes off again, handing them back to Ali and sitting to put her old ones back on. "I been meeting lotsa people with powers. But can't say who, promised most of 'em I wouldn't tell."

Sierra nods at Ali, looking quite seriously. "Well, that's parta why I didn't turn her in. Oui." She says quietly. "Are you alright?" She can't help but notice the change in stance in the other woman, or the obviously worry and guard she's placed up. She's a reporter…she's paid to notice this stuff.

"Yeah. Yeah. I'm fine." Ali flashes Jamie that bright smile - even if it doesn't quite hit her eyes - but then she focuses on Sierra. "I.. know a couple people." it's an admission - "Like her. Like you, I guess. If.. you're out to hurt her. Or use her? I'm not gonna let you." It's blunt, but hey, she's from Jersey. "Maybe I can't.. you know. Do stuff, but - I still won't let you."

Jamie blinks, looking up curiously to Ali again at her words. Then, as if she suddenly gets something, she nods and looks back down to tying her shoes. Once they're done up she stands up again, "Only one who ever wanted to use me didn't have any powers."

Sierra frowns, looking actually offended by Ali's words. "I would NEVER hurt her and I would NEVER use her. She is an amazing child, but to insinuate the thought of that is appalling! I wanted her very much away from that horrible man who made her go into houses because he was using her wrongly!"

"Maybe it is. Maybe it isn't. But I heard.. stories, you know? They tell me stuff, sometimes." Ali fishes out that wallet again, staring at it, frowning. "And they tell stories about people.. who. Well. I guess it doesn't matter."

Jamie bites her lip, looking between Sierra and Ali. Then she says, "Stop it! You're both nice, shouldn't be mean to each other." After she says that she fidgets a little, though, looking down.

Sierra ruffles Jamie's hair. "Don't worry, cherie. Not being mean." She says, though all the while facing Ali. "Look, I am a reporter from small town New Brunswick. I only know of two other people like Jamie and me. One of which only 'mimics' our abilities. I'm sorry if you don't feel that you can trust me." She smiles down at Jamie though. "Tell ya what, we'll go for something to eat sometime soon, again. How does that sound, eh? You still have my card?"

"Seriously - 'sokay." Ali smiles, then - an odd, wry smile.. and then winks at Jamie. "Sometimes I lie, kiddo - it's easier to sort out people, you know?" She offers a hand to Sierra. "I dunno if I can /trust/ you - but if Jamie does, and you're willing to get angry about her? That means something." She adds - "Be careful who you tell about what you are, whatever you are, you know? There's… some folks out there that .. hunt.. people like you. I mean, not to hurt, I think. But .. to do stuff to. To keep, sometimes."

Jamie looks back up between the two a moment, then nods seriously, "Ok." Satisfied that they're not going to fight or argue, she steps to look at some of the nearby clothes on sale.

Sierra shakes her head. "You sound sorta like me in a way." She says mildly, with a shrug. She holds out her hand, cautiously, and shakes Ali's. "And trust me, I don't tell people a thing unless I think I can trust them." She offers a little smile to Jamie. "I just know how I was at that age. That's all."

"She's a great kid - my roomate was a little shocked, but, well, it all worked out." Ali grins, shakes firmly. "You can trust me - I'm not gonna sell you out. Or her - I've got too many friends who have been.. you know. Messed up along the way. How'd you two run into each other?"

Jamie answers, smiling, "She saw me practicing balancing on a bench and thought I might fall." This is said as if that's the silliest of prospects. She looks through some of the clothes, but then looks back to the two adults.

Sierra nods ever so slightly. "'Tis true. I got worried. That was, of course, before I knew what a great at balancing she was!" She says nodding. "Well, I have to be off. I've got an article to write about a sewage problem that's effecting a small area of the city."

"Yeah?" Ali winces. "… wear coveralls, right?" She laughs, then - and moves to offer a bill to the woman manning the shoe-table there. "See, that's why I couldn't do your job. No offense - my hours may suck, but at least there's no sewers."

Jamie grins to Sierra and says, "If you want I can help check it out for you." She looks back to Ali and giggles at her words, "Sewers aren't so bad. Long as ya can't smell it," she jokes.

Sierra smirks. "Luckily, I do not need to go into the sewer. I did an interview with a city worker earlier and he told me what I need to know." She grins. She does a little finger wave to the others. "I am sure I'll see you two around."

Ali returns that wave - "no doubt - keep safe, huh?" She calls over - "See something else you want, kiddo?"

Jamie waves to Sierra with a smile, "Bye." She looks back to Ali and around at the stuff again. She indicates a red cardigan and says, "That, please?"

"… I.. " Ali checks her wallet, thinks for a moment, then nods - "Sure. Why not. Try it on?" The Dj stuffs the shoes in that bag, then circles around the table, flashing a sheepish smile at Jamie. "I didn't mean to, you know, make you worry. I just.. don't trust easy these days, I guess."

Jamie smiles and moves to try the sweater on, taking off her coat again before trying it on, over her sweatshirt. "Yeah, this fits good. Well, it will when I'm not wearing this too." She smiles up to Ali as she hands it back. "It's ok. Just glad you guys didn't fight or nothing."

"I guess I'm gettin' protective." Ali takes the cardigan, draping it over her own arm. "Can I ask you something, kiddo?" Again, she moves to the side, trading the last bit of green from that wallet for a receipt, with a grin. "It's kinda important."

Jamie nods quickly to Ali again as she follows along as Ali pays. "Sure! Can ask me anything. Don't got any secrets from you." She's serious too, looking up to Ali curiously.

"You happy, kiddo? I mean - at least for now." Ali drops the cardigan in that now-full bag, and offers it to Jamie, with a hopeful smile. "I kinda figure you're overdue."

Jamie nods quickly to Ali at that and steps forward to grab her in a hug, "Yep! Don't think it's just for now, neither." She smiles up to Ali and says, "Thanks."

McAlister hugs back. Fiercely. "Thank you, kiddo. More 'n you know. C'mon - let's head home? You start school tomorrow - I'll be home in time to walk you there, if that works for you. If you want, I can come by when you're done, too. Just tomorrow, you know?"

Jamie nods quickly to that and says, "Ok." She smiles happily and steps back, saying, "Glad you'll be there." Then she nods quickly as she starts to follow, "After too, yeah, please?"

"No problem." Ali grins, offering a hand - "You gonna be okay tonight? No staying up /too/ late."

Jamie nods quickly to that again and grins, "i'm always ok! But promise, won't stay up late." She smiles and takes the offered hand, walking along beside Ali.

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