2010-09-02: Twice-Told Tales



Date: September 2, 2010


Just a few months apart, and suddenly there's so much to catch up on…

"Twice-Told Tales"

Noodle Heaven, Lower Manhattan

It's been a good five or six minutes since George arrived, and he's no closer to being served than when he came in. The line's been moving just fine— it's just that he's been stuck on the phone, to the point of ducking aside so as not to hold up anyone else. "Well, I don't remember you telling me that, but that's probably on me. Priceless eggs in variable gravity, you know how it is." It's polite enough, but someone paying attention would soon work out that his patience is being audibly strained.

From one sweatbox to another. NYC to NOLA and back to NYC. Warm here when she left. Hellish when she was down there. Apparently the heat plague is spreading, since it's not hellishly hot here too. So cue late late evening sammich runs, in a tanktop and jorts, hair in a super lazy ponytail. In fact, lightened as it is from spending weeks cleanin gup beaches, Alex may not be 100% completely recognizable as people have last seen her. But she recognizes George and bides her time in line a few people back before she can get to the end and hipcheck him.

Oblivious to this latest entrance, George shifts the phone from one ear to the other, leaning against the wall. "What I could use is a vacation. Maybe New Orleans," he muses, glancing up as the music coming out of a radio in the back switches to a fast-paced jazz violin number. "I used to head back there for Mardi Gras but it's gotten dicey since Katrina—"

And there's Alexandra. Oh, he so should have figured. "I gotta let you go, something just came up." Beep, and the phone is slipped into a pocket and out of mind.

"Dicey, huh? I grew up there, you know, Mr. Dawson. I was just back there for a few weeks too. And look how I turned out?" Tray in hand, Alex does a little spin, and gives him a grin. "So, I haven't seen you in a while. But then, I haven't been around too much. You know…courtesy of your federal pals." And that applies to more than one recent-ish event. And a trip out of the country. And that little arrest.

George winces. "I've been ''Mr. Dawson'' for sixty hours a week, two weeks running. Gimme a break, would you?" One order of pastrami on rye later, he turns and gives Alex a proper once-over. "Well, you've certainly got the healthy sun glow going on. Been patching up the mess in the Gulf?" No mention of the other implications.

"I'd be a pretty awful engineer and native daughter if I didn't, right? So yes. For the last four weeks. Temporary employment situation and all that. Scooping up little - and not so little - tarballs." Turkey and swiss for her, it seems. Miracle Whip yo, not mayo. With a big fat tomato in there as well. On wheat - gotta eat healthy! "And you? Busy campaigning, I guess? Or, are you one of the off-year elections?"

"I have been, yes. And a tough one, too— I don't know if Dennis is going to fall on his face like the last guy, but he hasn't done it yet, at least." As they catch up, George heads over to an open table, scooting out a chair for her. "At least that mess from the spring has settled down by now. I don't think anyone's crazy enough to give it another shot any time soon, but I guess you never know."

"Well, hopefully not. There's a lot of witnesses to what happened there, and I'm sure it'd be harder to get them a second time around. That many people can't be wrong. I mean, the only conspiracy bigger than that is Roswell, right? Is that really real, though? Did they tell you about it?" Alex takes a seat just long enough to get a bite of her sandwich, then leans up out of the chair when poking him about Area 51.

"Oh, I was in on that one," George replies, deadpan. "I'm one of those reptilian aliens in disguise, you know?" Om nom nom. "Seriously, though— the campaign's been booked so solid this past month, I've been doing well just to make it back to Washington, never mind New Mexico."

"Yeah, God forbid a politician actually concern himself with work while he's busy running for office, am I right?" One corner of Alexandra's mouth is pulled up into a little smirk, but she reaches an arm out across the table and taps George's hand. "Kidding. I'm kidding. But what's not funny is that those sleazebags, mooching off the public" she starts but looks at him and winks, "are still the same ones that made up that whole racket about people with abilities. Good thing? Prepared me for when I got tossed in jail in July." She leans back in her chair now when she talks, taking a sip of iced tea.

George shoots Alexandra the obligatory glare at that one moment, but otherwise just listens quietly in between bouts of sandwich. Until she mentions getting arrested. "Well, I told you not to wear the leopard-skin mini outside after ten o'clock," he replies, not missing a beat, "it's not my fault if you didn't listen." Two can play at that game. "No, seriously— what were you in for? Don't tell me someone has gone vigilante on us?"

His mention of the leopard-skin mini is responded to with a little head-turned glare and a scowl. That's definitely not something she'd wear. "Well, I still contend that it was all just a big misunderstanding. The cops didn't see it that way. We were out protesting," she begins, because all good stories start with a protest. "I started going to this church here, right around when that eclipse happened. You know, looking for something to make up for what, ah, disappeared for a while?" Powers, clearly. "They were part of this protest about the police treatment of the homeless. Long story short, tear gas was used, I got a good mouthful and bumped into a cop with a riot shield and get arrested for disorderly conduct!"

At the mention of the eclipse, George simply nods: it took him a few days to put the pieces of that together, but he did work out at least some idea of how widespread it was. "Yeah, I've been hearing about that protest a lot since it happened," he says out loud. "Mostly from people who think the NYPD's mostly corrupt and needs to be cut back— or that it's stretched too think and needs a bigger budget. You just can't win for people who see everything in black and white, you know?"

"I wouldn't really know. I deal in the hard sciences. There's…not too many shades of gray when you're dealing with things that either explode and hurt someone or operate the way you intend." She gives a little shoulder shrug. "It's okay though. It was just a few hours overnight in the drunk tank with mostly other protesters. Nothing I couldn't handle. Of course, then I got bailed out by my boss - new boss, that is. I managed to land a cushy job at Lane Industries, you know. First, as part of my getaway identity, and now for real after we got back from the Amazon."

"Well, I'm glad someone's dealing with it, anyway." George furrows his brow, trying to place the name… Lane? One of his second-tier donors, maybe? He'll have to run it past the new adminstrative assistant later, Lord knows she's been overeager about her job so far. "What were you doing in the Amazon? You mentioned about the Gulf spill—" Which does leave a month or two unaccounted for, depending how long she kept laying low after the Protocol burned out.

"Gulf spill was after the Amazon. But that whole thing? It was kind of a clustermug." Who knows what term she was hiding with that, but it's evidently not good. "It's the reason why I drove to New Orleans in fact. I'm not flying anymore, did I tell you that? We were in the Amazon as part of 'Mark Scotts'' TV show," she elaborates, making sure to air quote Mark's name. When she finishes, she winds up sticking the tip of a finger in her mouth and nibbling off a bit of potato chip that she notices there. "Though, when it started with a plane crash? Yeah, not quite the vacation that I thought."

Now that gets George's attention right off the bat. "Wait, you were on that plane? I am so far behind on things. You'll have to tell me the whole story later— Jamie tried to, but it was a little, uh, incoherent." And she didn't stick around long enough to explain anything further, either. If he hadn't seen her ability already, he'd swear she had one that let her fly under the foster care system's radar.

"It's a pretty long story. We were there for…a long longer than I think we should've been. Luckily? The crew that Mark prepared was pretty well equipped to handle things. There was a lot of help from the natives too…which turned out to be the real mystery down there." In between bantering, she's nibbling down on that turkey sandwich, and before long, there's just crumbs and tiny pieces of chips left. If this is a dinner conversation, it looks like it's coming to an end.

Likewise, George finds himself fidgeting with an extra couple of paper napkins and not much else. So much for dinner— but the conversation might keep going a little longer. "What did you guys first have in mind when you went down there? They probably mentioned it when they reported the crash, but—" Yeah, he's visibly drawing a blank there.

"Uh…I think it was to find tree creatures, or something equally unlikely. Really though? The whole show seems to be a cover for Mark to scoot around the world and satiate his own curiosity about the dealings of his own company. There were some…pretty damning things to be found, even in the middle of the Amazon. I'm not sure he'd want that to get out into the public, though," Alex says, looking around the restaurant to see if anyone seems to be listening in at the mention of a TV personality.

"Mmm, I can appreciate the general idea," says George, having engaged in some covering up earlier in the year. For an equally good cause, though! "Well, if I ever have occasion to deal with them, I'll make sure to get in touch with him directly…" A quick glance back toward the cashier, who's giving them a bit of a dirty look by now. "And on that note, you wanna get outta here? I think they want their table space back."

"I'm counting that against their tip, of course," Alex replies with a shake of her head. But clearly, the time to drift on out into the hot city summer evening is upon them. Rather than say yes or not, Alex just stands up rounds up her garbage - loose napkins and disposable plate - and crunches them up to throw away on the way out.

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