Date: December 19, 2009
Hallis shares the fringe benefits of her suspicious new job.
"You're Paid to Do What Now?"
Lucky Joe's Diner, Lower East Side
Another day, another dollar. Hopefully more than one. Fortunately, the pawn shop isn't due to open for another couple hours, and Jade is scheduled to 'help' out starting around mid-afternoon, so Randall has taken the time to drop in at Joe's for a bite to eat. Hmm, is he more in a mood for syrup or brown sugar and cinnamon this morning?
Another day, another hangover. Hopefully this one won't set in until Hallis finally manages to get home and get some sleep. She stumbles through the door of the diner with a giggle, almost falling over. She's still wearing the Santa Girl outfit from last night and aside from the obvious drunkenness, she still looks pretty good. Spying Randall all by his lonesome, she flops down in the seat opposite him and gives him a wide smile. "Hhheeeeeeeyyyyy Randy!! What are you doing here?"
The bundled blonde that is Stephanie makes her own arrival to the diner not far behind Randall, through simple chance. It's the weekend, which means she doesn't NEED to be up early, but she's just an early riser kinda person. Though, somewhat tireder today than usual. (Yes, tireder. It's a word in Steph-speak.) She comes in, dressed in poofy down jacket, scarf, and earmuffs; her armor of choice against the cold. Stopping just at the door to stomp her feet a couple times and get snow off, she heads deeper within, lured by the promise of breakfast. And then…in comes a Christmas Elf? She hasn't even made it to table or booth yet, before looking over at Jingle Belle the tipsy elf.
It's about time for Randall to break out the Bernard costume again (yes, a certain resemblance has been noted) - he hasn't got it on yet, but the hat alone is enough to evoke a memory of the rest for die-hard fans. "Hey, Mrs. Claus," he says to Hallis, leaning back on the other side of the booth. "Trying to decide what I want. What about you? Never struck me as the coffee type." Meanwhile, Stephanie gets a quick glance, but only that: just another stranger passing in the, er, morning.
"I'm gonna get me a waffle!" The celeb says mysteriously. Then she leans across the table showing off what little cleavage she has, the suit really is that low cut. "I'm undercover…" she whispers, the smell of vodka very strong on her breath. "… I'm gonna get a waffle maker… so I'm researching waffles!" Hiccup. Giggle. "You know what you should get for Christmas?" She slides out of the booth a little bit and pats her bare legs, "Come sit on Santa's lap! I'll tell you what you need to get!" Then she spies Stephanie. Then … "Oh my god! Those are the cutest boots I've ever seen! Where did you get those?!"
Stephanie looks over to Jingle Belle at that, and smiles. She is, in fact, in fur-trimmed leather boots. (Or maybe faux-fur. Hard to tell.) "Got them at Macy's." she offers in a chipper voice. "And waffles are good. Especially Belgian Waffles, if you can get them with strawberries and whipped cream." She actually licks her lips at the thought, subconsciously. "Your outfit is kinda cute, too. For being kinda…I mean…aren't your legs cold?" It's the closest that Steph will probably ever get to saying "that outfit is kinda slutty".
Despite politely ignoring Hallis's come-on, Randall does instinctively glance down toward Stephanie's footwear— hey, those are kind of cute, and the girl wearing them isn't exactly hard on the eyes either. "We're not together," he makes a point of pointing out. Also, his breath lacks the distinctive scent of 80 proof. With the restaurant already pretty crowded even at this early hour, he scoots over a little to open up some room.
Scoot made, seat taken. Hallis swings across the booth to sit beside Randall and gives the girl with the cute boots a very wide smile. "Macy's seriously? Isn't that a discount store or something? What kind of boots are they?" Santa's boots are a black stiletto, which might explain the almost fall on her way in. "Hey! You want to have waffles with us? I'm buying! I just got the best bonus from my oh so very awesome boss." She leans over and pats Randall on the arm, "I can buy your store now!" Reaching into her bra, she pulls out a black card with her name on it and shows it off to him. "But I won't… but I might go back with Mitsy and get one of those things you sell!"
The blonde looks a little awkward at that. "No, it's not a discount store, it's /Macy's/. You know, the Parade? Miracle on 34th Street?" But she won't turn down the offer for company (or waffles). She moves over to sit down on the opposite side of the booth from Hallis and Randall. "Your boss gave you a big enough Christmas bonus that you can buy a store?" she boggles.
"That's just as well," replies Randall, glancing sidelong at Hallis as she sidles in, "it's not for sale anyway." Not until he figures out why the old owner left it to him in his will in the first place. It's some sort of Important Matter of Fate, he just knows it. "One of those what things?" he adds, quickly glossing over the mention of her friend. And Stephanie gets a polite smile as she joins them as well. Hi there, he mouths silently, so as not to further interrupt the rest of the conversation.
Circling one hand in the air, Hallis gives a small huff, it's obvious she has no idea. "I don't know what things… If I knew what things I would have said what things!" Randall, sometimes he's just not the brightest fellow. "Besides, you own the store, you should know what thing I'm talking about. Isn't that part of being the owner?"
Stephanie's revelation about Macy's is greeted with a gasp, "I know that parade! I was in it once!" She lifts one leg out in the aisle (to the amusement of a few photographers and quite a few old men) and points her toe. "I was a fairy or something. I was five." Then she settles her leg down and reaches past Randall for one of the standing menus. "Hey! This looks good!" comes the exclamation when she sees the giant breakfast platter. "Will someone order it so I can have a bite?"
Stephanie smiles and mouths a hello back to Randall, before looking back to Hallis in her excitement, as she shows off the breakfast platter. "Wow, that might even make me slow down, and I go through food like a fish goes through water." She considers. "I'll order it if you'll help me with it. Besides, some food might be a good idea for you."
Randall shakes his head. "I'm a clairvoyant, not a mind reader." In a deadpan voice— he's just humoring Hallis's stupor. Sure. "Tell you what, though, tell me how much you want to spend and I'll let you know what you can get for it." Then he cranes his head over to see which choice she's pointing out on the menu: "Ugh, you're right, I tried it once. Could probably split it three ways and still have plenty."
Giving Stephanie the 'I don't think so' look, Hallis shakes her head. "I can't eat! I'm on a diet. I have to look good in my bikini on Monday. I promised my boss." She places her left hand on her heart and raises her right. "Swear on a stack of nuns, really. But I can have a bite?" Then the blonde looks over at Randall with a smile, "Hey Randy… You know I love your name, right? It starts with an Rrrrrr…" and she rolls the R, ending it with a purring sound. "George's name doesn't start with an Aarrrr… but he had this phone call last night?" And this one time at band camp. "And he went out and like… I never saw him again!"
Stephanie doubletakes again. "Wait, wait…your boss gives you bonuses big enough to buy a store, and makes you show up to work in a bikini? In December? Who's your boss? What do you do?" She's almost afraid of the answers, and she blushes a little as her brain goes off on tangents.
Randall arches a brow. "Sounds like a real winner. Is he the guy from the restaurant that one time?" Where they engaged in a little fake-flirting competition, before he decided she grated on his nerves. "How big a bonus— hundred dollars?" he adds, before ordering a cup of coffee and a bottle of Tabasco sauce as the waitress stops by their booth.
Shaking her head, the young woman smiles brightly. "Hundred thousand dollars. And I'm spending the first dollarses on you and you!" Hallis announces, pointing at each of her tablemates in turn. She leans against Randall's shoulder, her Santa hat slipping down just a touch on her forehead and she grins. "Who, Trent? No way, he's with this really awesome chick named Emily. And you were with me until you totally dumped me for Mitsy. God I hate her. She was trying to steal my boyfriend last night just like she stole you!" The young woman waves her hand to the waitress to call her back and places her own order. "She wants the big breakfast thingy, and she's going to share with Rrrrandall. I want.. waffles… with a chocolate chip in them. More than one!" Whether she wants more than one chocolate chip or more than one waffle is left for the waitress to decide because she is summarily dismissed at that point.
A hun…A hundred thou…A hundred thousand dollars?!?!? That's a year's salary in a lucrative career. Or several years outside it. As a BONUS?! "That's your bonus? I'm in the wrong line of work." The questions about where she worked went unanswered, which just leaves Steph's imagination to go overtime. But given the skimpy outfit and the behavior, plus the size of the bonus, it's certainly not going anywhere legitimate. "The police aren't gonna show up, are they?" Cause right now she's assuming Hallis is some sort of Call Girl For The Uber-Rich.
Hearing that dollar amount, and half-suspecting Hallis has got the number wrong (rather than just thinking she can buy his store for a single Benjamin), Randall picks up the card and gives it a good long look. Nope, no clues to be had there. "Yeah, this guy doesn't have an Italian accent or anything, does he?" he asks, glancing over at Stephanie in case they do decide to make a run for it. "We don't want to be caught in a drive-by just because you were five minutes late."
Plucking the card back out of Randall's hand, Hallis gives him a mock scowl. "No! My boss is the best boss on Earth. He takes care of me." Obviously. Turning to Stephanie, the young socialite grins widely at her before bending to suck some of her water with a straw. After soothing her parched throat she holds up a finger. "And you know what I do all day? I buy things!! All day!! Isn't that great? This one day, I bought a huge pair of lederhosen. And then we got into a nerf war and I didn't even know the Nerf or Nuthin'! But I know now."
Stephanie looks back to Randall, her expression clearly questioning, since he seems to know Jingle Belle a lot better than Stephanie (that is to say, better than not at all). "Are the things you're buying legal? Cause…umm…I mean, showing up to work in a bikini in December, and getting a hundred thousand dollar bonus…I mean…" Bright blushing. She can't actually muster enough backbone to /actually/ come out and accuse Jingle Belle of prostitution.
Randall does know Hallis, sorta. He also vaguely knows of one person who might have the sort of G-rated-weird tastes that she's mentioned, along with ridiculous amounts of money to throw around. "…was he, by any chance, wearing a big floppy red shirt with a J on the front? Really high-pitched singing voice?"
"Uh.. no but he was wearing a light up Christmas tree tie?" Hallis questions, seeming a little bit confused at the line of questioning from both people. Then… very slowly… she clues in. "Holy crow! You think I'm a drug dealer?!" Hallis blurts out to Stephanie, gaping. "I haven't touched any drugs in…" She begins to count her fingers, moving swiftly from one hand to the other. "I don't know… forever!" She the slides down in the booth, sulking. "I don't go to work in a bikini every day… Most of the time I wear these really nice suits. This is just for something special. Gawd…"
Stephanie goes a brighter shade of red. "Sorry, I just…that's an insane amount of money! And you're sort of not wearing very much at the moment, and kinda drunk." Well, she IS. "It's just…kind of surreal. I'm sorry!" Clearly very embarassed by bringing it up.
"Oh, Jaden's not a drug dealer," offers Randall, "if that's who it is. I think he was like— okay, you remember when Forrest Gump's ship was the only one to survive that hurricane, and then they were the only shrimp company left in business after? I think he did that, only with the Internet bubble. I've mostly only seen him on TV, but—" He cuts off, though, at the mention of a 'special occasion' involving a bikini. That still sounds kind of dodgy.
"Best. Boss. Ever." Hallis sing songs, exclamating each word with jazz hands. "Seriously, he's the greatest man on Earth. He's like my personal hero. Did you know he gave me a job?" Way to point it out Captain Obvious. "AND he took me to this place for chicken and waffles and I met Skittles!! AND Jaden was rapping… you have no idea." Their food arrives and the young socialite looks at her waffles and is completely overcome. "They're so pretty!" Then she looks around the plate, a frown crossing her features. "Hey! Don't these come with chicken?!"
Stephanie facepalms. Yes, literally. She sighs once, and says "You ordered them with chocolate chips, not chicken. And Jaden /Cain/?" That does explain kind of a lot right there. She pauses, and says "Why is he making you come to work in a bikini?" Because, yeah…just like Randall, that sounds dodgy to her.
Meanwhile, Randall reaches back and picks up a lunch menu, turning to the appetizers and offering it to Hallis, once again rolling with her brand of crazy. "You could still get chicken. If you wanted to actually, y'know, eat some of it." It'd cost extra, but if she really does have a hundred grand on that card, then she's not likely to care except on general principle. Once the menu is handed off, he turns his attention back to Stephanie, his expression suggesting something like 'I don't get it either'.
Stuffing a big bite of waffle in her mouth, Hallis grabs the menu and waves it at the waitress. Yes, she's ordering the chicken too. Unfortunately, her mouth is full so all she can do at the moment is point at the picture. Good news for the little blonde, the waitress got it. "Mmph!" she interrupts the silent communication between her two breakfast partners. Swallow. Drink. Swallow again. "He thinks a fur bikini is a good idea, I'm going to wear it. I got an office too! I'm going to get it decorated later today!" If she ever wakes up. Which is unlikely.
Stephanie blinks. "A fur bikini just sounds itchy." Or at least, that's her impression on the whole thing. But she starts into breakfast. She can at least get a meal out of the craziness. She starts in on it, putting some fuel in the furnace. "But I guess if you don't mind being embarassed for money, it's okay."
Randall busies himself with prepping his coffee, then starts in on whichever side of the plate Stephanie isn't already attacking. He's not all that picky about such things. "I don't know, are the fur boots itchy? I think I've got a coat somewhere, but that'd be on top of something else." He didn't get a good enough look to see if Stephanie had socks on underneath hers.
Hallis shakes her head in between waffle bites and swallows again before adding her objection. "Nuh uh, I'm having this one made of rabbit fur. It'll be really soft. Not like sable or wolf, those can be kind of itchy. But the fur isn't on the inside silly, it's on the outside." She drops her fork and knife and grabs a napkin to wipe off the corners of her mouth. After crumpling it and dropping it on her plate of half finished waffles, she leans back and pats her stomach, "I think I've got a food baby… You guys good here? I gotta go. It's getting really late and I have to get some sleep!" Then she's up and off to the register where she settles their tab and leaves a very generous tip. "See you later! Next time… Waffles at my house! I'll cook!"
"…you're having a fur bikini specially made?" She stares a bit, and then looks over as Jingle Belle is off and away. A wry shake of her head, and she offers a hand to Randall. "Hi, I'm Steph, welcome to the Twilight Zone." She chuckles. "I should get going too. I can't finish all this, and I've got tons to get done today."
Leaning across the booth, Randall shakes hands briefly with Stephanie. "Randall. Nice to meet you." Not Randy. Why does everyone call him that? Does he look like a Mexican DUI lawyer? "And don't worry, I've been living in it for years now." He glances down to see how much of breakfast is left, only to realize that he's managed to get syrup on his shirt. "--well, hell. Can I get a takeout container for the rest of this?" He waves a hand to get the waitress's attention— if she hurries, and he hurries, then he might be able to get back to his apartment and change clothes. And only be, say, half an hour late opening the shop. Those dollars of his are starting to slip away…