2007-09-19: Terribly Beautiful And Beautifully Terrible

Starring:

Desiree_icon.gif Ramon_icon.gif

Guest Starring: Parker

Summary: Desiree returns home to Ramon after a night of chasing down her teenaged son and getting kidnapped by raving pirates. They talk about … pirates, naturally, but also about the future and Juanita.

Date It Happened: September 19th, 2007

Terribly Beautiful and Beautifully Terrible


Upstate New York

It's pretty darn late, all things considered, when the door to the upstate country home cracks open after a fumbling jingle of keys. When Desiree left the house earlier today, on the hunt for one of her kids who decided to misbehave in a bout of underage partying, she was wearing an elegant black-and-white floral print dress. When she comes home, she couldn't look any more different.

The first thing to enter is a toy cutlass. That's right. A cutlass. She uses it to open the door the rest of the way while she strides in, a heavy, dark overcoat shuffling around her hips and legs — over which she wears tattered britches. The coat is so heavy, it weighs down her narrow shoulders, which look ridiculously oversized now. She's wearing a device resembling a leather corset, too, overtop of a billowing white blouse. The woman's face is the most shocking part, however: all whites and greys, she looks ghastly in undead-themed paint. "Fourteen! Fourteen!" she's badgering the twin, with good reason, while hauling him inside by the neon green glowstick-like loop around his neck. "Y'ain't old enough to be runnin' around by yourself let alone goin' to one of them— " Dezi the undead pirate makes air quotes around her cutlass and shuts the door. "'Raaaaaves'. You know what kinda crazy stuff goes on at them things?! Go upstairs and get to bed, you're gonna be doin' homework for breakfast, mister, and don't you be givin' your sister any ideas. Go on! Git!"

One can almost hear the ellipses. Ramon had gotten up from the couch, where he'd been reading for his business courses that he's trying to take, and waiting up for her. But he's just staring at this…costuming. He rubs the back of his neck and says, "You--ah--Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate's life for you?"

After giving the teenage boy a harmless smack on the rear end and watching him amble away, Desiree heaves a giant sigh, leaning against the front door. She's stationary for barely a second before she's trying to shrug out of the heavy coat on her way to Ramon. Even the make-up of the undead can't vilify Desiree's sunny smile, where it would surely look ghoulish on others. "Arrrr!" she informs him, letting the coat fall off her arms, after which she tosses it over the back of the couch. "Parker somehow got wind of this party in the Garment District, in this big ol' warehouse— Jesus, I'm still seein' flashin' lights. Fourteen!" She walks around to flop onto the couch cushions. "It's them tall genes lets 'im pass for older, I swear I gotta nip this in the bud 'fore he starts gettin' into real trouble. Well anyway, I got kidnapped by pirates…"

"Kidnapped?" Ramon's eye might go wider if this weren't obviously much less dire than it sounds. His eyebrow climbs upwards, near his receding hairline as he sits himself next to Dezi. "Okay. I'll bite. Tell me the story. I am ready to believe you." Yes, even Ramon can find his way into a pop culture reference.

"Yeah, 'cause, see, actually, I was a British spy," Desiree says matter-of-factly, although she sounds anything but British at the moment. She finds herself gesturing with the cutlass; giving it an odd look, she leans ahead to slide it onto the coffee table, out of the way. "So, these two pirates kidnapped me, see, and took me up on their ship to see the Cap'n and then I was forced to walk the plank and before I know it," she snaps her fingers, "I was in Davey Jones' locker… which… looked a awful lot like a bunch of foam and a dressing room… any rate, obviously, I died," she plants her hands on either side of her face, to draw attention to her new look, voila, "And was made to be in league with Mr. Davey Jones hisself for somethin' in the realm of all eternity, then a buncha his pirate minions broke out dancin' and I found that sneakin'-around underage son of mine and dragged his ravin' ass home. How was your night?"

"Uh," Ramon says intelligently. "Well, I didn't die. So your son essentially went to the geekiest rave you can find? Clearly he and Luis have a thing or two in common. It sounds like the drugs at that thing were /way/ too good." He stands up and gets a warm washcloth, offering it to Dezi so that she might, if she so chooses, clean that crap off her face.

"It's the good drugs I'm worried about! Well, at a place like that, anyway. Don't never know what's goin' around." Desiree accepts the cloth with a gracious smile and starts dabbing at the bridge of her nose with it, peering at the grey sludge that smears off after a moment. "The Cap'n was that DJ from that radio show," Desiree says, utilizing her excellent skills of description.

"There's an awful lot of DJs from an awful lot of radio shows, darlin'," Ramon rasps, reaching out to take her cutlass and put it away. It might come in handy on Halloween. He reaches down to sift fingers through her curls real quick, unable to resist them, before finding a closet to put that in. "Which one do you mean this time?"

Desiree contorts her face this way and that as she cleans the paint off of her eyes and chin. She flashes Ramon a quick smile in passing then runs the cloth over her whole face before she answers, "Midnight McSomethin'."

"I'm not up late enough to have heard," Ramon says ruefully. "So I fail pop culture 101 again." He sits down next to her and takes her hand. "But it's all okay? Parker's alright and there's no cause for further concern?" He squeezes her hand gently. Some of the worry and tension that had settled on his face rest there still.

"He's gon' be grounded, other than that, he's fine," Desiree says with some lingering bitterness. Of course, it's pretty easy to circumvent her groundings. She's not the best enforcer of rules ever. She squeezes Ramon's hand in turn, lifting hers and his together and letting them casually fall. "Speakin' of late, what you doin' up so late?" she asks with a flash of concern. "Work keepin' you up burnin' the midnight oil?"

But not Ramon's. "No, I was waiting for you." Ramon starts calculating how he's going to keep the boy under wraps for Dezi. He strokes his thumb over her knuckles and leans over to kiss her forehead. "I wanted to make sure you made it home safely, bonita. Are you hungry? I believe I can manage to warm up leftovers at least."

Touched, but also apologetic for having unknowingly kept Ramon awake, Desiree can't help but make a little pouty face. "Aww, I didn't mean to make you wait up, sugar," she says, squeezing his hand tighter again. She lets go with the thought of food in mind, though. "I guess a little. My head's still spinnin' from seein' all them lights."

"Alright, hang tight." He stands up and goes to the kitchen. He pulls out a tupperware, inspects its contents for any signs that it's becoming a science project, and then when it passes inspection he puts it all in a bowl. It appears to be some sort of tortilla soup. That goes in the microwave, and he brings her that and a cold glass of iced tea when its all said and done, on a tray.

By the time Ramon has accomplished the microwaving and pouring of things, Desiree has cleaned her face save for a grey smudge hiding the freckles along her left cheekbone and a black smear underneath her opposite eye like a football player's. "You're the best ever, you know," she says, beaming up at him with some awe as she wraps her hands around the soup bowl. "I'm spoiled."

Ramon reaches over to get rid of that smear with a thumb, and grunts. "I don't know about that, but I try." He settles down next to her again, an over-protective guard dog mastiff. He takes a deep breath and says, "Any chance you can get a weekend off in the next month or so?" There's some sort of oddness in some of his phrases, like he keeps changing what he's going to say.

Desiree sets the bowl back down, after all, and goes for the iced tea while the soup cools. She blinks at Ramon with raised eyebrows as she takes a drink, nodding casually afterward with a little shrug. "Well, sure. I got lots of time off since I'm part-time, I can jus' manage it to be a weekend. You got somethin' planned?"

"Yes. I'm going to ask Elena to come watch the kids so you and I can get away," Ramon rumbles, rubbing the back of his neck. "I'm thinking this nice mountain cabin I found. Just you and me, high up, scenic view. Does that sound like something you'd enjoy? I'm sure we can find some hiking or swimming or…or something." He rubs his palms back and forth on his jeans, which he was in fact wearing just to bum around the house, even though he always leaves the house in a suit now.

"Yeah, that sounds real nice," Desiree replies with a gentle smile. At ease, Ramon, you're doing great! "It'd be good, get out somewhere uninhabited," she comments, pausing briefly to lean over her soup and stir it around. "You can get away from EvoSoft?"

"Yeah, I can get away," Ramon grunts. He leans back, and closes his eyes. "There's serious stuff I should talk to you about," he mutters. "But I don't want to break the mood. I thought we'd go around your birthday. If Evosoft can't do without me for 2 days Evosoft is just going to have to suck it up. I'll tell Jaden that we've realized it's International Legend of Zelda day and I have to wear all green and go into the mountains in search of goombas to destroy. He'll understand."

"Oh yeah, I forgot about that whole birthday thing," Desiree says absently, though not avoidant, per se - just as if she honestly forgot it's in less than a month. "Yeah he would. What's a goomba?" She dismisses it almost instantly with a wave of her spoon. "Never mind. Serious stuff? Serious stuff like, good serious, or normal serious, or everyone's doomed serious?"

"I don't know," Ramon says, after a long moment of hesitation. "There's an awful lot there. Are you still getting flashes of that horrible future?" He keeps his eyes closed, but his fists clench over his legs slowly. But if Dezi warned them, Dezi's also the best indicator when things have shifted and changed away from it. "And did you see the back garden?"

"Not since that day." A hint of that seriousness leaks into Desiree's voice; it seems against her will, as if she'd rather not think about it, as much as she wants to change the future. "Seems to come and go when it wants. If I ain't seein' pictures of the city bein' ruined, I'm seein' pictures of the waffles I'ma have next Tuesday for breakfast. Hm?" She glances in the direction of the back of the house. "Oh - oh, yeah. It's beautiful, like a garden of Eden how fast all that sprung up." The woman thinks nothing of it, strange as it may be; just that it's lovely. "Late bloomers, huh?"

"No. Juanita. She has some sort of terrifying power. She did all that and turned a caterpillar into a butterfly in record time," Ramon says with a sigh. "I think the people that messed with all the kids and wives are wrapped up in that future in some way. I think we're going to have to pursue it again. I was going to ask you and Cass to go do your thing with the clinic." He pauses and says, "In truth, Dezi, none of that is it either. I mean it's on my mind. All of it is. But what keeps coming back around…" His fists clench again. "Is that I'll make too many mistakes. And I'll get you hurt or worse." He opens his single eye and it looks nearly black in the low light.

Desiree, in the midst of her supper, decisively sets the bowl down on the tray and turns sideways on the couch to face Ramon, tucking a knee up on the cushion. She looks him in the eye, reaching out to touch is face, cradle his jaw. "Ramon," she says in that kind-hearted voice of hers, bewilderment mixing with concern in her eyes. The hazel is obscured in the dim, but they glint brightly where Ramon's is black. "You could never hurt me," she adds with conviction. "I'll be okay. Saved myself from dyin' once already, right?" She smiles and lowers her hand to his. "And 'bout Juanita, I ain't surprised. We got some crazy talented families in this house. So she did that? That's not terrifyin', Ramon, that's downright beautiful. What's that, like the gift of life?"

"Yeah, something like that. The implications are terrifying. The things people might do to gain control of that are terrifying." He presses her fingers into his face and holds them there. His jaw clenches and twitches a little bit, and he says, "I love you Dezi. Its not me hurting you I'm worried about. It's everyone else, because of things I do trying to protect you, protect the children. Miscalculations. Mistakes." He expels a breath. And kisses her cheek.

A frown borne of more concern turns down Dezi's lips, which are now devoid of the shimmery lipstick she left the house in prior to her piratey adventures. She slides in closer, curling against Ramon and wrapping an arm around him, comforting. "Everyone makes mistakes, Ramon. Is' how we learn to do it right the next time, when the stakes get raised." She kisses him on the cheek, this time. "So we'll keep her nice 'n' safe," Dezi adds in a quieter voice. "Almost brings a tear to my eye, thinkin' that little darlin' can do somethin' like that. That's how beautiful a notion it is." Beautiful versus terrifying, the difference in perception seems vast.

Ramon opens up his eye to look at Dezi, a smirk tugging at his features. "Well, it is beautiful. It could fight world hunger and all sorts of things I imagine. Cure diseases. Start wars." He kisses her cheek. "I'm glad you're the optimistic one. You'll have to see the beauty for both of us. I can't see it without seeing how they might come after her for it."

Desiree mimics Ramon's smirk, hers blossoming into a full-fledged smile that causes her eyes to squint and crinkle warmly. "I'll give you some optimism yet," she says, as if taking on a challenge, and scooches ahead to kiss him quickly on the lips. "Now, look, you made me—" Er. " —micro… waved… me this nice dinner and you're distractin' me from it with doom and gloom." She doesn't actually sound seriously put out, however.

"Heh. So I am," Ramon says. "Well. I tell you what. I am pretty sure I have some videos here. You want kung fu, action, or this nice romantic comedy? I'll watch any of them with you, but only if you don't tell anybody that I watched the romantic comedy if that is what you choose. If we fall asleep on the couch, well, we'll tell the kids we were making sure they didn't sneak out."

Desiree doesn't take long to decide. "Well, if those are my options, I'ma go with romantic comedy. Other ones're too violent. Your secret's safe with me. An' if anyone suspects, well, I got my sword thing," she reaches out with a foot - boots still on, oops - and pokes the fake (?) cutlass with her toe. "Oh, wait, I guess that's violent too. Well, it'd be justice for the sake a' romance and comedy."

Ramon smirks and puts the thing on for her, then comes back to the couch. Whenever she finishes her soup, he'll even cuddle, snaking an arm around her. Granted, he's probably going to doze through the movie at many intervals, but he tried.

… Honestly, once she's through with her food, Desiree will, in all likelihood, fall asleep on Ramon. Maybe even before Ramon. It's a toss-up, but one thing's for certain: neither of them are expected to move from that couch any time soon.

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