You've Got Red On You


Julian_icon.gif Simone_icon.gif

Summary: Two old faces meet each other and have a chat over a corpse. Just like old times!

Date It Happened: December 21, 2001.

You've Got Red On You

Alice's Teacup

A place of whimsy and bright colors, Alice's Teacup is a tea and pastry shop revels in it's name. The walls are striped and painted in bands of a dark purple and lighter lavender, much like the pelt of the Cheshire Cat. Painted in black cursive script are the poems from Lewis Carroll's tales - The Jabberwocky, The Walrus and the Carpenter and so on, enough that it takes up much of the space. Tables of many different sizes and colors are scattered across the room in no discernible order with mix-matched chairs pushed into them. The countertop has been painted like a checkerboard and there's an old fashioned register that takes up most of the space there. A glass refrigerated case is filled with sweets named things like "The Red Queen's Raspberry Brownies" and "Tweedle-Dee's Truffles."

Early evening in Hollywood is usually the time to start drinking like a fish, and so it is for Julian - except that, for now, he is skipping over the alcohol and preparing himself with tea. The Englishman sits primly at an otherwise unoccupied two-person table, a saucer in one hand and a delicate teacup in the other. He is sipping at a very nice brew, and a pot of it is resting in front of him in a small pot that sits on the table. The hustling noise outside doesn't quite make it into this place, and a small torte is tucked onto the side of his saucer. The place is practically empty; most other people have better things to do with their Sunday nights.

A heavy draft knocks into the darkened entryway as the door /swings/ open, allowing a casually dressed, confident-looking blonde to step through before she cuts it off again, adjusting a gauzy amber scarf at her neck. Teatime and pastries might be an admirable tradition for all involved, but in this case, Simone Muldoon is looking for sweets of a rather…different kind than what is sold here. The outfit she has chosen to present herself in doesn't really reveal otherwise: a slim white sweater, jeans, conservative brown heels. As she feels the eyes of the young woman at the counter turn towards her, the vampire's own eyes freely gaze around the inside of the establishment. Her fingers pause, mid-adjustment; she blinks when her gaze settles on Julian.

There's that delay, at least. But then she turns away again almost just as nimbly, letting her feet busily take her up to the countertop. No doubt it's some other guy who /looks/ like the guy she dated seventy years ago. There are lots of people in L.A.

Julian might so resemble that fellow from seventy years ago because of his clothing. Not many men around still wears suits cut like the one he's currently wearing, nor is a double-breasted waistcoat like the one he's got on a common sight. Nope. He's decidedly out of place and old-fashioned. The new arrival to the shop doesn't attract his attention just yet, preoccupied as he is with his tea and pastry. Some things don't change over the years; above them? An oblivious nature.

The obligatory 'may I help you?' glance that Simone receives is tired. Bored. Slow Sunday evening, after all. Even worse for a teenager like this one, who should be out enjoying the night with her friends before the drudgery of Monday school. It's a decent-looking young woman with pixie-cut brown hair and dark violet nails to match the walls, visible in the hand that she is partially draping over the counter, along with her forearm.

In answer, though, she gets only a reproving smile from her taller customer. "What was right there?" Simone inquires observantly, making a tiny gesture at the offending space (missing label!) and the crumby, empty platter that sits behind it.

It's the voice that brings Julian's attention away from his quiet obsession with his tea, a voice he hasn't heard in decades. Decades. He lifts his head and turns it so that he can comfortably settle a dumbfounded stare on Simone. He isn't in the best viewing spot, but there's no mistaking the curve of her neck, the angle of her jaw, the color of her hair - and wow, has time treated the vampire well. CLINK. The cup and saucer are suddenly and jerkily almost dropped to the table.

Well, time treats most vampires well. Most of them. The ones that do not have old demonic ruts and grooves carved into their faces, which Simone most certainly does not. Right now, the woman has a calm and agreeable smile on hers, watching almost haughtily over the bridge of her nose as the employee bends down to snoop around in the empty space pointed out. "That was our French vanilla tarts," the teen exhales as she resurfaces. "I'm afraid we don't have any of them available right now, but if you want to come back - oh my /God/ -"

The teenager had made the mistake of relaxedly leaning even farther over the counter, hands clasped, in order to meet Simone's eyes. What /does/ meet her eyes won't be visible to Julian, since Simone has her back turned, but it isn't difficult to guess- because a second later, her grip is already clamped around the girl's neck and shoulders. There is an outburst of soft screaming, but it's soon smothered.

That completely settles any and all doubt had by the half-demon as far as Simone's identity goes. His chair gives a shriek against the floor as it's suddenly forced back by its former occupant. Rather than quailing in a corner as most people would probably do when faced with a sudden bloody attack Julian leaps forward, but stops several paces away from the vampire so he can watch the inevitable death of the teenage girl who had not long ago grudgingly sold him tea and torte. There he stands, amazed.

It's a minute or two before Simone can look up properly enough to actually see Julian watching her. The girl's hands had locked themselves around Simone's upper shoulders, no doubt trying to pry the heavier woman off, but now Simone roughly removes them herself. The body /thuds/ unceremoniously to the floor, bouncing from a landing on its side to rest in a faceplant.

"…Why hello, m'dear." Her fingertips daintily trace a very straight, thin dribble of blood from her lips as she half-turns, eyebrows arched above her blue eyes. Damn it all. What was his name again? James? Justin?

"J-J-Julian," the man supplies after a moment. It's a bit disconcerting to come face to face with a long-time fantasy, especially when a large number of the fantasies actually did involve blood in them. Go figure; it's a half-demon's idea of romance. The dropping corpse gives him no worry and he takes another step forward, digging an embroidered handkerchief out of a vest pocket to offer it to Simone. "You've got red on you, kitten."

Simone plucks the item daintily, wiping the area around her mouth and chin more completely. Still careful so as not to mess up that gloss of thick, dark lipstick, however. "/That's/ what it was," she answers with satisfaction after a deliberate pause, eyebrows still raised. The used handkerchief is carelessly tossed back towards Julian, as though to a servant. "Fancy meeting /you/ after all these decades, hm? Still trying to kill people between—" Her gaze shifts. "Tea and pastries?"

Julian leans forward quickly once the kerchief is thrown, snatching it out of the air before it hits the ground. He clutches it tightly before returning it to his pocket, sputtering briefly as his habits are questioned. "Tea is very important," he finally says defensively. "And I do kill people. Not quite as, ah. Blatantly as you obviously do."

This only receives a hint of a wider smile from Simone, whose eyes almost instantly resettle on Julian's own. It seems like this is closer to banter, from her, than a quarrel as far as intent goes. She folds her arms across her chest, quite imperiously. "There's more than one way to skin a cat, Jules. I see you haven't gotten out the habit of - well, ah. Your clothes." That should explain enough, right there.

"What's wrong with my clothes?" It's a sharply-asked question, but Julian's testiness is swiftly replaced with a more even tone. "You know they have cameras around these days, kitten. You're going to get caught going at your game, and then you'll be in a whole pile of trouble." Is the man concerned? You betcha. It wouldn't be any good if the vampire got herself nabbed. He takes a cautious step forward and then halts again, taking a moment to peer down at the dead employee. Tut tut.

Simone shrugs indifferently. "It's the twenty-first century, darling. You probably attract more attention than I do, and why're you worried?" The segue into the second part of the question is accompanied by a brow lift, more bemused than the last. "I can take care of myself." One of her legs gives a distasteful little kick at the girl's face, a heel striking across the cheek.

Twenty-first century or not, suits will never go out of style - at least that's Julian's reasoning. He looks good in them! Rather than voice any of this he simply sends a sulky look at Simone from the corner of his eye. This is followed up by the man reaching forward for Simone's arms, intending to draw her gently back and away from the dead girl. "I know you can take care of yourself, but that doesn't mean someone shouldn't look after you."

The vampire allows herself to be drawn away from the corpse, but her manner resists; Simone is still intent on embellishing on her point, which she does with a mild, though slightly lengthy /look/. "Darling," she says after a bit. "It's very sweet of you to offer, but I've been around for - oh, /I/ don't know - around ninety years longer than you." What else is she thinking? Murderer wannabe lololol. "Besides, don't you have a nice girl waiting for you at home? No?"

All Julian wants at the moment is for Simone to stop beating on that poor dead girl. She could've been so beautiful, given enough time to live life; but vampires generally don't think about that when they kill people. "I'm amazed that you've lived this long given your habits. I thought someone must have killed you decades ago." Honesty is not always the best policy. "—And no, I don't have a nice girl at home. I've barely been here a week. Give me time."

"…And what is that supposed to mean, my habits." Back to being offended. "They're better than /your/ habits of tagging behind the real demons like a lost mouse. It isn't a vampire's job to be subtle, you know." The teenager isn't even given another downwards glance. The tension in which the pose is 'resting' is kind of odd. Awkward, but there you have it.

"Don't be cruel, kitten." Cat and mouse? Maybe. Julian slides his left hand up along Simone's arm to wrap his fingers around hers, stepping a little closer. "Subtlety isn't a crime, and you really should watch what you eat. Go for something more — matured." Like old people! They're pretty worthless, and they've finished their chance at life. "Your habits are just very… flashy. You're going to get caught."

This actually draws a faint look of disdain from Simone, though she doesn't move right away. "Lord. Julian Tiggs, obsessed with pretty women. All of them. You'll never change." With this, she slips her arm away from his in one deft movement, stepping forward again to circle the feet of the dropped body. "What's anyone good for, Julian? This is a big, ~bad~, busy city. The death of one more /girl/-" There is a kind of vicious nudge. "Isn't going to turn anyone's eyes. Well, except maybe yours."

Julian just enjoys the closeness with Simone while he can, tempted beyond belief to set his cheek against her shoulders. She's pulled away before he can act on his impulses, however, and he frowns at the vampire while hooking his thumbs into the pockets of his waistcoat. The dignified stance lasts about two seconds. He's willing to take the light mocking he gets, recognizing its validity, but the continued abuse towards the corpse brings him forward again, trying to ease Simone away from the dead girl once again. "Please, darling. Mind the body."

Hah-hem. Nope. Sorry. With an even cooler ferocity, Simone just applies repeated nudges until the body rocks /all/ the way over this time; first onto its side, and then an even heavier flump onto its back. It spread-eagles faceup, glassy brown eyes still open and apparently watching the colorful ceiling. The rawness of the neck wound still gapes, savaged and bloody. "It's only a /body/."

The half-demon immediately looks away from the gruesome sight, apparently incapable of forcing himself to see the dead girl's face. "Simone. Kitten. It may be a body, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't honor the dead, does it?" Julian steps away from the vampire only long enough to pull a small flowered tablecloth from the nearest table, and then he's back at her side and flapping the thing outwards. It'll do as a shroud for the corpse's barely-lingering modesty. "I mean. Strictly speaking, my love, you are only a body."

"Oh, my /dear/, we both know that I'm so much more. And I'm not your kitten, so quit calling me that." With a silent exhalation, Simone observes the scene with amusement while allowing Julian to proceed, stepping back so that both man and corpse have some room. "This is why you'll never be a proper demon, sweetie. How you can you be, when you care about stupid, trivial things like this?"

"Rubbish. You'll always be my kitten, like it or not." Julian sends the vampire a short smile as he leans down to drape the tablecloth over the woman's face and upper torso, patches of it quickly blossoming with red stains as blood leaks through and gets soaked up by the fabric. "And I am indeed a proper demon. I may not kill as wantonly or indiscriminately as you do, but I do kill." That's why he's in a new city! Yes.

"Rubbish yourself. I'm your kitten only if you're my mouse. As to both - /you only wish/." Simone draws out the syllables of the phrase. If she had been disdainful before, she is oozing it now, though still with relatively little display of temper. She continues watching with hands folded on her lap, the end of her translucent scarf fluttering just a little. "What /are/ you doing here, by the way? Last I saw you, you were still god knows where. In New York." Way across the country.

Julian may as well be a mouse. The woman's obviously low opinion of him is ignored in simple favor of the fact that she is present, which is enough to send him into a nearly euphoric state. Vampires are always the best examples of womanhood; they don't age. It's wonderful. "I was in New York a few days ago. Killed a gentleman and took his fortune. I'd rather not end up in prison or under investigation, so - fraught with despair - I came here." Except the despair part is total bullshit. "And you, kitten?"

Less 'low opinion' than that's just the way Simone /is/ with most men, but in either case? Well, don't take it personally."Yeah, well, I've lived here for the last couple years. I found it suited my needs well enough, and so here I've stayed." Simone affirms this with a light headtilt. And speaking of being under investigation. The closed door in that shadowy area behind the counter suddenly becomes louder - that is, there are now sounds audibly coming from a behind it. Possibly the mutterings of a voice.

The vampire swiftly presses her lips together. "Mm. Well, I'm thinking~ I might take my leave here, shortly. It's been a /delightful/ surprise bumping into you."

At the mention of leaving the establishment Julian promptly makes his way to the door, reaching forward to pull it open. And then he stands aside, holding it for Simone like any gentleman should. "Where are you staying? I'll come and see you." The half-demon might just be desperate for lively company. There's also no reason to stick around and get arrested.

Simone marks the gentlemanly gesture approvingly, striding all the way outside and taking one step aside before fishing into her purse for a notepad and pen. "—There," she says when she's done, tearing off the page and holding it. It isn't an address, but a number. "You can /call/ me when you want to talk to me. There isn't any hurry."

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