[Snowpocalypse] A Nice Evening Out (R 5.3)

edited May 2014 in Snowpocalypse

We pick up with you finishing most of your meal at Red Brick. What did you order? Was it good? What did you say when Jester promised the owner a couple weeks of free music?

Jester mostly watched you during the meal. He ate some, drank some, but seemed much more interested in watching you. Did you talk? What did you talk about?


  • I took whatever food he gave me... We live in a snow-covered cityscape – quality ingredients with enough variety to merit a fucking menu doesn't typically become available to the average Josephina. Forget the fact that the tools required to make molecular gastronomy are burried under ten feet of ice. The fish he gave me was overcooked, and salty as all fuck – but I'd go back for thirds and fourths if I had the jingle.

    I insisted "a couple weeks of free music" was way too much for a night's room and board – and that we needed to get back to the gang before too long. Shy of that, I didn't really say much other than "this is so fucking good..." half fighting back tears.

    Holy shit I'm hungry.
  • Jester pushes his plate across the table to you. "This is even better. Take it, I'm full. You'll need your strength... for later." He grins.

    The server girl hasn't come by, not once. Jester had to order the food at the bar, and pick it up. He's not the least bit touchy about it, but you can tell these people don't want you here. There's a very, very handsome man at the bar talking with a merchant from Crossover. You've seen him with Hadden before, but it's been a while.

    Near the fireplace is a small family: mother, father, two kids and... maybe an uncle? A big hulk of an uncle. The family is dressed well, that's probably their SUV outside. They're pale white, light blonde hair, well fed and quiet.

    You realize you smell, but nothing much you could do about it. Shower later, probably hot water at a place like this, that'll be amazing. Maybe worth a couple weeks' work. Maybe.
  • I'm hesitant to just take his food... I mean, I don't when we'll have the jingle to feed ourselves next, let alone have the ability to turn down food. I feel like an ass for taking it. I'm pretty sure I'm slumping as I ask, "are you sure?"

    ... If his answer even hints at a nod, I'm not sure I'll be able to keep myself from burying my face in that plate.
  • Jester nods, pushing it all the way across, reaching over to move your plate aside to make room. His hand lingers near yours, but he's not getting in your way, and moves it away when you dig in.

    It's much better than the fish, delicately balanced sweet sauce on a tangy meat, some lightly seared vegetables, too. Probably grow-lamp stuff from Stalefish, and amazeballs. There appear to be one too many eyes on it, underneath, but that's perhaps more than one of the... animals used to make it.

    "How did you cope... down there?" Jester asks when you finally come up for air. He's talking low, this place is quiet, conversations carry.
  • I don't normally give half a fuck what people think about me — but this place is just weird... I don't feel right here. I slow down when Jester asks how I coped down there, and swallow a mouthful of food, then take a drink of cold water before answering. "I almost didn't... Things looked fucking horrible down there. Invert and Arbor both needed help, and Poptart fucking snapped on one of ours over food. You can't think about what might happen if you don't make it... I had to stay focused, and know that you wouldn't leave me down there."

    I smile, and take another small bite, "I'm just glad I was right."
  • Jester looks right at you when you say that, Rossi. It's obvious it means something to him. He takes a breath, holds it for a moment, then exhales it to say, "Rossi, I love you. When I thought you were gone, I felt like I'd lost everything left in the world. There were things I never told you, thing we didn't do, things I thought I'd never get back."

    He reaches out to touch your hand, "Marry me. I want the entire frozenass world to know I'm yours and you're mine. And when you're ready, I want to have kids with you, Rossi. I want us to raise them to happy and strong. We can be a family." He's so earnest, so intense about this, it's not a joke.

    What do you do?
  • Why is my mouth suddenly so fucking dry?

    I reach for my glass of water, and take a big drink... Like "the whole fucking glass" big... Fuck. I don't mind the thought of getting married, maybe... I mean... I love him, but I never thought marriage really added anything to it. Look at Merr and his fucking wives — are they in love? No. Are they married? Yes. We're in love. Isn't that enough? What will getting married add, other than making me a "wife" — whatever the fuck that means — and add expectations of family, and all that shit to my life?

    And why does he want to throw kids into this mix, anyway? Didn't someone just try and bury me alive? Aren't I wanted dead or alive at the fucking Pier? I was just submersed in a literal boatload of tear gas. What about my life screams "mother material" that I'm not seeing? And what's with this "ownership" bullshit? We're together — not co-owners of our bodies...

    My hands are shaking, and I think I've been quiet a little too long... Shit. I look up at Jester, fear in my eyes, and whisper, "Jester... I love you too... I just... Kids... And getting married? I mean — not that I have anything against it — but what does getting married give us that being together doesn't? Do you really see me as the kind of woman that is a "wife"? Half the time I'm pretending to be a man for fuck's sake..."
  • Jester nods, like he isn't surprised at your reaction. He sits back, still looking at you, but his hands slip under the table, and he leans over a little, "I'm not marrying anyone else in the world. I'm not trying to put you in some box, Rossi. You're the kind of woman I love and want to spend the rest of my life with. And if having a kid makes you calm down a bit, live a little longer, well that's not so bad."

    His eyes dance for a second and he pulls his right hand out from under the table. He must've fished something out of his pants pocket, because he's got his hands clenched into a fist holding something, "Besides, Mel would never let me give anyone but my wife this..." He turns his hand over to show you a very fine, delicate white gold ring with an adorable ruby red stone on it. It looks adorable and incredibly clean.

    "My moms were married. They were happy, even though times were tough. I am proud to call you my forever partner, or whatever you want to rename it. But in my heart, I want to be your husband, Rossi." He hands you the ring.

    What do you do?
  • I'm beginning to worry Jester has me confused with some woman he invented in his imagination... I'm not the kind of girl to settle down and have a dozen kids. I could see myself with Jester, possibly forever; but he's living in a dream world if he thinks kids would calm me down. They sure as fuck wouldn't make life any easier.

    The sight of that ring puts a big, dry lump in my throat that won't fucking move. My eyes lock on it – an old symbol of days gone by – and I'm torn. It's pretty, like the words coming out of his mouth, but it only makes me worry... "Why me?"
  • "Rossi," he says your name with such affection, such comfort, "Why not you? You're brave, you've saved my life over and over, you like my jokes, you sing just for me, I trust you, you have a good heart, I rely on you. We're partners, we work together well, you fill in my gaps and I fill in yours." He pauses, chuckles once, and with a grin, continues, his eyes growing a bit glassy, "You'll hit me for this one, but you're fucken beautiful, and I know we'd have really smart, strong and handsome kids. I mean... who could argue with our contributions to the gene pool? Who could ask for a better mom than you? And, since we're stepping into dangerous territory, you're great in the sack, like, really great. We're compatible, Rossi. We can talk, we can cuddle, we can get frisky, and it's all good. I love you, Rossi. There will never be another, not for me. I'm done looking, done searching..."

    His voice cracks a bit, which never happens for Jester. He can talk through everything, but not this one, "It's just you."
  • Do people with good hearts shoot doctors? Whatever...

    He's right, though – I'm probably going to punch him for being lewd. Not hard, or anything... Definitely not right now... My eyes lock on his when he starts talking, and they don't wander until he's done. The emotion in Jester's voice definitely has me going though. I'm beet red, and I've got that tingly feeling you get in your nose right before you start crying. He definitely has a way with words... I wish I could see the world through his eyes.

    The elephant in the room is how he keeps bringing up kids... I don't understand why people want to bring kids into this world. I totally get taking care of them if they just happen to come along, but actively wanting to have a kid? Why? So they can freeze to death? And spend years getting shit on by every asshole out there? I can rhyme off the number of truly good people I've met in Chi-town on one hand.

    I deflate, and lean forward so I can talk more quietly. "Jester," I whisper, "I really do love you, and I want to spend forever with you too... But I don't think I can give you what you want." I reach out and gently take his hands into mine, "I don't think I can give you kids."
  • Jester doesn't flinch. He holds your hands like they're precious, like they're unblemished. "You can't? Or you won't?" he whispers back, leaning forward, looking at you with devotion, not accusation.
  • "I," I stammer, "I don't know? I've never tried having a kid, but that's because I can't imagine putting a kid through the kind of life I had growing up... This world isn't good to kids, Jester. It's not even good to the people who are here already! It's not good enough to say we'd be good parents — think about all the fucking people who end up dead in the streets from snipers, or freeze to death in a hovel because they can't find dry wood to burn. Think about the people who would sell our kids into slavery because their parents wronged some fucker with a hard-on for abusing women..."

    I hang my head, still emotional as some memories of my childhood come flooding back... The operating room, the sickening smell of bleach, that shitty fucking song about London Bridge, being huddled in a corner with Silica as Mom screamed at that asshole. He used to hit her. He liked it. It's a feeling I'm not entirely unfamiliar with. It's a side of me that comes out when I wear that mask... I don't want a child to see that kind of anger. I don't want them to have to do the things I've done to survive...

    But what truly scares me, is that when I couldn't take it anymore, I abandoned my little sister... I left her in the hands of that monster. I did it because I would have gotten us both killed. I went out looking for somewhere safe to find for her, and I never fucking found it. Now she's addicted to ice, and she fucking hates me. How could I bring a child into this world? I've fought tooth and nail to keep Jester — a full-grown man — alive these past few months... All I've got are guns and clothes on me. How do you feed and house a child with guns?

    I look up to Jester with tears in my eyes, and shakily whisper, "I didn't have the loving parents you had growing up, Jester... I'm not ready to bring a child into this world. I'm not sure this world is ready to have children in it. If you want kids, then I need stability. I need to know I don't have to kill people to keep us safe. I need to have food stuffs that don't dry up. We need a real home that isn't going to get buried by Merr and his fucking assholes... Please tell me you understand that."
  • There's a long pause as he looks at you. You might've expected disappointment in his eyes, since you're mostly saying "no" to kids, at least setting a high bar. A reasonable bar in a reasonable world. But this aint that.

    He swallows, takes a breath, then nods. "I understand." He lets that hang on the air for a bit, then squeezes your hands, "I want to learn how to protect myself, Rossi. If you need stability, then you need to trust me on my own." The left corner of his mouth quirks down in a slight frown, "It turns out that not everybody loves me after all."
  • The response makes me frown... Not out of disappointment, but rather a deep sadness that I've finally broken through those rosy red glasses Jester's been wearing. I really mean it when I say I wanted to see the world through his eyes — and I'm not saying that everything about this world is necessarily harsh... Jester is one of the few beautiful people in this world, and nobody deserves to be happy quite like he does... I just want him to be safe too.

    I lift my hand up to his cheek, and calmly whisper, "maybe not... but I love you — and you don't know how much you mean to me. I promise you I'll work hard to make my life stable. I promise I'll never leave you... I can't promise there will be kids in our future, but... Well... I can't exactly promise there won't be either — I want you to be happy too, Jester. In spite of all this fucking shit, I want you to be happy..."

    I lean in close and give him a peck on the lips, then add, "I won't make you look anymore, Jester... I love you, and if you need me to be happy the way I need you, then I'll be your wife."
  • Jester reaches up to lace fingers in your hair, and suddenly presses his lips to yours in a passionate kiss. He doesn't hold you there for more than a moment, but it's just this sudden elated moment. With trembling fingers, he reaches down to take your left hand and slip the ring onto the finger. It fits, mostly, a little loose, if you can believe it.

    Then he holds onto your hand and steps up from his seat, standing on the floor to address everyone in the Red Brick, "Everyone! I want you all to know that Rossi has agreed to be MY WIFE! This is the greatest moment of my life!" He does a little hoppity dance and laughs.

    The dour family looks sort of shocked for a moment, but then the wife nudges the men, and they give smiles. She raises a glass, and stands. With a heavily accented voice, she says, "Blessings to you then." The family, and the weird uncle, raise their glass with her. The bartender joins in the toast, even other patrons seem more at ease.
  • That kiss felt soooo good...

    I'm blushing pretty hard when he's up and dancing around; but I get up and nod to the family in the corner, then grab him by the waist and plant a kiss on him to calm him down. "Easy there, Jessie... Let's not make too much of a scene."

    It occurs to me that he just announced a marriage to "Rossignol" — a girl who wandered into Chi-town on a pair of skis, who was too shy to say her real name when people asked — and something about it strikes me as wrong... I pull him into an embrace, and whisper a name into his ear. It's one nobody's called me in a long, long time — one my mother only ever really used. I put a finger up to his lips once he's looking at me, and add, "just for you."

    I remember reading that newly-weds exchanged rings or something... I don't have a ring, but I figure this will have to do.
  • Jester does take is easy, but his arm slips around your waist and he's grinning like he just won a lottery. Then, you lay "the name" on him, and he knows exactly what that means. He looks in your eyes with this amazement, like you gave him more than he thought you could.

    He glances over at the bartender, "We'll take the bath and the room now, please." The server girl comes over to lead you both down the hall to a set of stairs up to the couple rooms over Red Brick.

    On the way up the wooden stairs, which creak and groan as you climb them, Jester says, "The rooms up here are pretty nice, Rossi. Big beds, a bathroom with a big tub, heaters... the works. High jingle travelers stay here when they move in and out of Chi-Town."

    The server, a slip of a girl with mocha-colored skin and a shaved head under a kerchief, pulls a old skeleton key out of a pocket on her dress to open up the second door down the hall. Inside is much like Jester said, a decent room with some nice amenities. A dream compared to the sub, not bad compared to where you lived as a kid. She leaves you two alone, and he immediately works on getting a bath going.

    What do you do?
  • You'd think Jester had this planned out, or something... I follow him upstairs, and into the big room they've got prepped for us. The room reminds me of the house I had out on 47th, and I miss it... Which is fucking weird. I only had it for a few weeks, but the place was so nice. Quiet, almost. I wouldn't dare go out there alone, but if things don't work out with Lemma, I might go back with the gang... Try and reclaim that little neighborhood.

    I lock the door behind Jester, and fiddle with the new "ring" on my finger... I wonder if Lemma can make it fit better. Maybe I just need to eat a bit more... I did just starve myself for a week. I feel sluggish just eating that crap downstairs — hell, I'm pretty tired too. A bath could be nice. Several baths could be nice.
  • "Strip down and have a seat on the bed," Jester says softly as he checks the temp of the bathwater. It isn't a command, the tone is light. He's going to pamper you, like he did before in the sub. I'll assume you won't fight him, or that you don't have the energy to fight him if that's something you'd consider.

    He makes sure the water is nice and warm before he hobbles over to help you up, then leads you over to the tub, and gives you support as you get in. As you're settling, he heads to a small closet and gets some rags, and comes back to gently wash you, insisting you lie there are relax. He croons to you softly, songs he knows you love, a few lines he's written in himself, all about you. Which song touches you the most, Rossi?

    Jester spends several minutes with his little whittling knife working on the grime in your nails, gently cleaning each one as if he was peeling back layers off an onion. He even pulls your feet up, one by one, cleaning your toes, toenails, too. Pretty soon, the entire tub is filthy, so he helps you out of the tub, and walks you over to the bed, laying down towels so you can lie there and just relax, stripped of the gear, and the mask, and the guns. Just you and him. Husband and wife.

    I imagine you drift off at some point, but is there anything you just have to say or do before he lets you sleep, then cuddles up beside you?
  • I'm really not used to this kind of treatment... I'd have been just as happy to just wash up quick and fuck until we both pass out — but I'm not going to complain. I just listen to him sing softly, and let the warm water do its thing. I wanted to kiss him after he sang that song "Everything" — that was really sweet — but I'm just fucking putty. Walking over to the bed took the last little bit of strength I had left. I'm happy to just be with him, and not have to worry for a minute...
  • It's maybe two in the morning when you wake up, Rossi. You're nude, in bed with Jester holding you, probably the most comfortable you've been in your own skin in years. Maybe ever, right?

    You dreamed about Silica. About Amber. She's back home, working with your father, who has someone on the table. It's Hadden. Silica is so frightened, Rossi. She's stuck there, can't fight.

    You hear her thoughts:
    Rosie... why did you leave me here? Don't leave me...

    Then you're up. You know it's real.

    What do you do?
  • The image flashes before my eyes like lightning on a dark night, and I feel my heart skip a beat. I jump out of bed, and frantically start grabbing my shit. "I need to go!" I yell as I start throwing on my underwear, "Silica's in trouble, and I can't leave her... I can't leave her there again."

    What the fuck were you doing back there Silica?
  • --END SCENE--
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