A Tale of Two Beers

Cast: date: 'October 5, 2012'
place: 'Covent Garden'
participants: 'Decker, Yuki'
synopsis: 'On their second meeting, Decker returns the favor by treating Yuki to dinner, beer, and another engaging conversation.'
log: "The late evening finds Decker out again, performing on the streets. His table is setup next to him not far from the row of pubs and restaurants, hoping to catch the crowd coming and going from them. Currently, he is standing with a metal rod that has the tip lit on fire. He has his shirt off, not wanting to accidentally burn it, which sits on the table. He tilts his head back, holds up the burning rod and spits out some liquid from his mouth, causing a ball of fire to shoot out from the rod. He does it several times until all the liquid is removed from his mouth before he takes a bow for the crowd then starts to swallow the burning rod to extinguish the flames.\n\nThere's no telling if Decker has spotted her in the crowd or not, but Yuki has spotted him already. The fire act is an impressive enough one on its own, but that the rain hadn't extinguished it is a bonus. Of course, Yuki's own tendencies regarding heat has forced her to keep back a bit as she watches, and once Decker swallows the flame, she's among the number of people stepping up to pay a tip, laying out the same amount as she did the last time she saw one of his shows, five pounds even. The bill she lays out is perhaps a bit wetter than the rest, at first anyways, being kept directly in her pocket as opposed to something protective like a wallet. \"An' 'e even eats fire. Ice mus' not be a problem at all,\" she comments in passing, flashing him a smile before stepping back a bit.\n\nDecker removes the extinguished metal rod and takes another bow before allowing people to place tips in his case that is set out. He sets the rod down on the table before he hears the familiar voice from behind him which causes him to turn around. He sees Yuki and offers a smile to her, chuckling softly at her comment. \"Nope. Eating ice is a lot easier than eating fire. Only thing I have to worry about when eating ice is getting my tongue stuck.\" He lets out a soft laugh at that as he wipes up any of the flammable liquid that spilled onto his chest with a rag before he starts to put his shirt back on. \"It was my first public attempt at it.\" As he puts his shirt back on, the rain causes the wet fabric to cling to his form.\n\n\"Well now, I see th' show isn' over, is it?\" Yuki asks with a playful grin, all too blatant in enjoying the show Decker puts on along with his shirt. Not that she wasn't enjoying him without it. The fact her own white shirt clings in similar fashion doesn't even seem to occur to her. That, or her uncaring approach to modest just keeps her from caring. After another second or two of eyeing him over, Yuki raises a hand to wipe back her blonde-dyed bangs, turning her head a bit to look around, \"So, w'at's the next act? You seem t' 'ave plenty linin' up now.\"\n\nDecker gives her a playful smile as she looks him over, giving a quick flex of his muscles along with a soft laugh. He smiles over to a few of the members of the audience as they add tips to the case. \"Thank you.\" He offers them along with a wave before he looks back to Yuki. \"I'm not sure about the next act, but I'd try juggling knives but I don't have any actual coordination for that. I'd end up losing a couple of fingers and then I'd be out of a job.\" He lets out another soft laugh.\n\nYuki nods at that, looking around at the crowd of people. Some watch to see if the show is over or not, some stare at Decker, a few stare at Yuki, and others just watch other people altogether. Most people out are soaked to some degree or another, after all. Of course, most are dressed much more sensibly for the weather than Yuki is, as well. \"If you're wrappin' up tight, we could maybe grab a nibble 'round here if y'want,\" she offers, stepping forward just incase he should need any assistance closing up shop like he did last time. Same as before, a few drops of water seem frozen to her face, or at least not dripping down nearly fast enough. It's clearly something she does without even realizing it at this point. \"Fancy meetin' you out this way, either way. Thought you might be back in Piccadilly or somethin'.\"\n\nDecker smiles as he looks back to Yuki, picking up a bottle of water which he takes a quick swig from. Her comment about getting food causes an eyebrow to raise slightly before he takes a look at his watch to check the time. \"Yeah. I could close up early and get a bite. I think I made enough to treat you this time.\" He says with a smile as he turns to the others gathered. \"Sorry folks, that's all for tonight. Come back tomorrow for another show. I appreciate all your support. Thank you!\" He offers them another wave before he looks back to Yuki. \"Any place in particular?\" He asks as he starts to gather up his tips, making sure he's got enough to cover the bill. After he finishes counting, he smiles brightly. \"I got enough for a meal and some drinks afterwards. Looks like the fire thing is a big draw.\" He says as he stuffs the cash into his pocket before he starts to put his stuff away in his backpack.\n\nYuki almost looks a little upset since it does sound like she just caused you to close up early. In apology, she moves to help with taking down the table again, having little problem with it this time around. Seems she's a quick learner. Then again, as much ground as she's covered in the short time since she's been back, she'd probably have to be. \"Well, there's shops all 'round the place, figure any of 'em will do. Get out th' rain, wring out th' shirt, an' have a bite with a friend,\" she suggests, looking up at you as she finishes with the table, picking it up and holding it out for you, \"But you're th' one payin' for it, so I figure you should be pickin' the place. I'll eat anything.\"\n\nDecker smiles as he watches her start to help take down the table. \"You know, if you keep helping me out like this, I just might have to hire you on as an assistant or something. Give you a cut of the tips.\" He watches her for a few moments to see if she's doing it right before he nods his approval and returns to putting his stuff away. \"Cutting out ten minutes early for dinner with a friend seems like a good idea.\" He says once he's finished, slinging the backpack over his shoulders, letting it rest at the small of his back. He looks back at her to see if she's ready. \"Well, there's the pub around the corner I was going to head to after my show and get a bite. They have some good food and beer there if you want to have drinks with me.\" He offers her a quick wiggle of his eyebrows and a playful wink.\n\nYuki giggles a little bit at the brow-waggling, bringing her hands up to her face to cover her mouth, the closest she's probably acted to embarrassed over something yet. Or she could just be faking social mores. After a moment she lowers her hands, still smiling, and slides them effortlessly into her water-logged pockets, \"You're def'nitely buyin' then,\" she says, starting towards him, following him once he starts walking. She doesn't know which corner he meant, after all, \"Part of bein' 'omeless an' also 'avin' no proof of identity…gettin' an ID can be a pain…so I 'aven't exactly gotten 'round to it yet…so I don' drink, either,\" she admits, before a recent occurrence pops into her mind, and, with no shame or self-consciousness otherwise, blurts out, \"I also can't buy dildos or erotic magazines, apparently…or 'least tha's w'at the shops in Soho tol' me. Not sure w'at they meant though…but they 'ad a lot of funny things for sale!\"\n\nIf she is faking it or not, her covering her mouth does cause Decker to smile more. He slips the table under one arm before he starts off towards the pub he's got in mind. He looks over towards her at the mention of the ID. \"Well, I'm sure you'll be fine here. You look over 18, so you shouldn't have a problem.\" He says until her comment about the porn and dildos. That catches him off guard and causes him to pause in his step to look at her. \"Wow. That wasn't something I was expecting to hear.\" He says with a laugh, slightly shaking his head. \"What was that place?\" He asks, not really familiar with the porn shops since they didn't have them when he was growing up nor in the Gloom.\n\nYuki shrugs her shoulders, treating the experience and conversation as if it were not all that big a deal. Apparently it's not something she's done a lot of reading on in her time back. \"There're a lot of shops in Soho with these big signs on 'em. Kiss signs. Y'know, like in a letter. Three x's an' all that. I thought they might be novelty stores…but after bein' asked to leave three of 'em I gave up,\" she explains. Apparently there's still a bit of naivety to the girl. Walking up to the pub, she dashes a little in front of you, making a grab at the door herself and stepping back, pulling it open and gesturing for you to go in, \"Let me get this for you, since you're carryin' all th' 'eavy stuff there.\"\n\nDecker thinks and nods. \"Oh. Those shops. I know what those shops are. I've seen a few of those myself.\" He says simply before smiles as she opens the pub doors for him. \"Thank you.\" He says, stepping inside. He sets the table down next to the door, tucking it out of the way before he looks around for a free table nearby. \"How about there?\" He asks, pointing to one before he starts taking off his backpack. \"I'll be right back. Gotta give the bartender my bag. There's dangerous stuff in there, so they want me to keep it behind the bar until I'm done.\" He says with a shrug. \"I'll be right back.\" He says before he moves towards the bar to take care of that.\n\nYuki looks to the table in question and starts right over there. Unlike last time, she sits and simply pulls her shirt out a bit, peeling it a bit away from her figure. She doesn't wring it out though, trying not to do something that'll surely have her kicked right out. But also unlike last time, she doesn't ask for the washroom either. Instead, she waits patiently, leaning on her elbows on the table and turning her gaze towards Decker, watching him as he has entrusts his belongings with the establishment. Or at least watching his back and associated areas. Like there's a lot else for her to do. Soon as he finishes and starts heading back, though, she finally grabs herself a menu and starts to look through it.\n\nDecker finishes up with the bartender and makes his way back to the table, taking his seat on the other side and makes himself comfortable. \"That's better.\" He says, taking up the menu. \"See anything good?\" He asks as he looks through the menu as he waits for the waitress to come take their order. He sees what he wants and closes the menu, setting it aside before he looks up at Yuki, watching her for a few moments as she decides what she wants.\n\nYuki takes a moment longer to put her order together. It's not that nothing looks good, but she seems to be nitpicking items that are likely to come out colder rather than something she'll have to wait on. But once the order is in, she sets her own menu aside and offers a friendly smile to the waitress. Seeing the woman off, she looks back at you, leaning in on her elbow again, \"I 'onestly didn' expect to run into you again so soon,\" admits, leaning back again, and wiping a little at the table. All the rain lately, she's been soaking everything she touches, \"Bleedin' weather…been 'ard to get a good rest without doin' somethin' questionable.\" She does not elaborate.\n\nDecker places his food order with the waitress along with a glass of beer, returning his attention back to his companion once she's gone. \"Yeah. I wasn't expecting to see you either. At least not this soon, anyway.\" He says with a smile. \"Though I'm not complaining either.\" He offers her a smile before he seems to remember something. \"Oh, I forgot. I called those people for you. They're going to send someone to contact me then get in touch with you.\" The mention of the questionable things causes his eyebrow to raise slightly, but he doesn't press it. \"Yeah. It's putting a hamper on my performances, but hopefully it'll clear up soon.\"\n\n\"I don' usually mind it over much,\" Yuki confesses, looking towards the door again, watching the rain outside as it still pours, \"Jus' when I'm tryin' to sleep under th' sky an' th' sky keeps cryin' on me,\" she finishes, looking back to the waitress and nodding as the drinks are delivered. At least there was no major complaint to Yuki ordering a pint here. Maybe they do have a different opinion about her age than the shops elsewhere. Looking down at her mug, she picks it up carefully in both hands, tipping it back and taking a sip. Then a second sip. Finally, she sits it down and scrunches her face a little bit, \"I know this is a pop'lar drink an' all…but if y'ask me, it tastes like piss smells.\"\n\nDecker nods. \"Yeah. It was annoying as hell trying to sleep in the rain when I was on the streets. I ended up staying in the tube tunnels. If you can get past the noise of the trains going by, it's not bad. But at least it's also dry and surprisingly warm.\" He says, picking up his beer and taking a long drink from it before he nods. \"Yeah. There's a lot of drinks out there that have an acquired taste and some that grow on you until you like to enjoy it.\" He says, chuckling softly as he leans forward slightly, resting his forearms on the edge of the table. \"Did you get your jacket back from your friend's place?\"\n\nYuki shakes her head, looking up at Decker and smiling, eyes trailing down over his physique a bit, \"No. I think th' rain 'as been keepin' her from th' park. She seemed a fashionable sort, she might 'ave somethin' ridin' on stayin' dry for work,\" she says, not seeming to mind all that much. The jacket, at least, doesn't seem to be worth too much monetarily for all the concern she's showing about it. Then she picks her beer up again, taking another small sip of it. Seems this one is going to last a little bit. \"Mmm…not sure 'ow I feel about acquirin' a taste for piss,\" she concludes, but it doesn't seem to cause her to order another drink or anything. \"Hmm…so w'at's it like? Havin' a steady place to stay, I mean…\"\n\nDecker frowns slightly, nodding his head. \"Well, I'm sure that once the weather clears up, you'll be able to get your jacket back.\" He takes another long drink from his beer, apparently already having a taste for it. He sets the glass down and thinks for a moment about her questions. \"Well, it's pretty nice. Not having to worry about where I'm going to sleep or if the weather is going to be too bad for me to settle down somewhere. Plus I don't have to worry about getting arrested for vagrancy by the bobbies. I'm happy that I was able to find a place with a landlord that is so understanding about my situation and is so flexible. I do like that I can have a place to hang my artwork and not have to carry all my stuff everywhere I go too.\"\n\nYuki does pay rather rapt attention to the explanation of things, though whatever she really feels about it is kept quietly under wraps. Her expression shows neither disinterest or envy, \"A place t' put things sounds nice,\" she admits, leaning back against her seat again as the food is finally brought over. Her meal, simple reuben and chips, \"I've always wanted t' try one of these,\" she says, picking up the rye bread sandwich, a little of the thousand island dripping out of the back and down on the plate, \"Here goes nothin' then,\" she says, biting down on it. She holds the bite for a second before pulling away, starting to chew before looking up at Decker and smiling, looking quite pleased.\n\nDecker smiles and nods his head at her response to his feelings about having a place. \"Yeah and my offer still stands if you need a place to crash. I've got a couch I can offer.\" He says as he looks to the waitress once their food has arrived. He looks at his plate, a Sheppard's Pie, then to hers. \"That does look good. I'll have to try one sometime.\" He says as he sees her pleased appearance. \"Must be good.\" He says as he picks up a spoon and takes a bite of his meal.\n\nYuki listens to him as she takes another bite of her sandwich. She chews, but it's far from the generally-accepted amount of a 'good idea' for chewing. Enough to get the job done, but little more unless she's enthralled with something. At least she waits until she's swallowed before speaking. \"It's excellent,\" she agrees, putting the sandwich down. There's chips too, but they're still a bit hot, and she makes a point of keeping her hands away from them. \"I s'pose…I may take you up on that, 'least if the rain doesn' stop soon,\" she relents with a smile, \"Might be fun…first time I'll 'ave been in a man's place.\"\n\nDecker smiles as he sees her enjoying her meal and he eats his own meal. He looks back up at her as she mentions accepting his offer, nodding his head once. \"Well, let me know when you need to stay and I'll make sure to clean up, open the windows to let the man funk out. And I promise, I'll behave myself.\" He says the last part, holding up a hand as if swearing in court. He then flags down a waitress, gets a pen and writes his number down on a napkin before returning the pen to the waitress. He then hands his number to her. \"Here's my number. Just give me a call whenever you need to stay over.\"\n\nYuki takes the number, looking it over a moment as she pinches off another portion of her sandwich, stuffing it between her lips, chewing, then swallowing. Finally, she looks up at Decker again and raises her eyebrows, \"I don' exactly 'ave a phone,\" she points out. And if she did, it would be water-damaged beyond repair at this point. Likewise, it's unlikely the paper will stay dry, or the ink unsmeared or unfaded, \"W'at's 'man funk' anyways? If it's stink, it can't be worse than some of the places I've slept. Got a bit of a tolerance. Surely you know w'at I'm talkin' 'bout.\"\n\nDecker nods his head slightly. \"Yeah, I know you don't have a phone, but there's plenty of pay phones around the city. Just in case you're close to one of those.\" He says with a slight smirk playing on his lips. \"Yeah. Man funk is pretty much guy stink. I know what you mean though. I have slept in some pretty rank places. It sucked.\" He shakes his head slightly at the memories of those places that he's had to stay at.\n\nYuki nods. She recognizes that look, the recognition of what she means, \"As long as y'know w'at I'm talkin' 'bout, you should know I'm not goin' to make much a fuss if you can't clean up,\" she says, finally taking hold of one of the chips. They've cooled a remarkable amount in the few minutes since the order arrived. She dabs it in the dressing that dripped on her plate, and slides it between her lips, chewing at it, \"Mmm…I'm guessin' you're single, then, if you're that worried,\" she observes, \"I'm surprised, really. I'd've thought a handsome man like you would 'ave a bird or two.\"\n\nDecker shakes his head after he takes a few more bites of his pie. \"No. No birds. I really haven't been looking though. Been too worried trying to avoid the demons and trying to not go back to where they took me. Relationships haven't been a big priority for me. Besides, how many girls would know what I went through and could deal with that?\" He pauses for a moment before he adds, \"Present company excluded, of course.\" He offers her a warm smile about that. \"Though, it must have been the same for you too, though?\"\n\n\"Always movin' about, I s'pose I don' think much 'bout it…long as I don' stand still too long, an' long as I avoid th' dark…\" she says, trailing off a little, taking the next bite of her sandwich in silence, then another sip of her beer before she continues, \"That's another reason I asked, too. I can't imagine stayin' in one place f'r long. Thought maybe if you 'ad, th'n I could. An' I could 'ave a normal life…but if even you're single…s'pose that's w'at I'd deal with too.\"\n\nDecker nods. \"They haven't come for me at home, so that's been a good sign. Though I usually don't leave all the lights off either. I can't sleep in total darkness anymore and plus the nightmares…\" His voice trails off and he drains the last of his beer, signalling for another. He takes a deep breath and exhales it before he looks back up at her. \"Me being single doesn't mean that you have to be single too. You're a beautiful woman, so I'm sure you'll find yourself a nice guy.\"\n\nYuki shrugs, \"Th' few men I've chatted with, most are put off by th' cold. Completely incompatible,\" she laments before smiling again. Even as hr gets another beer, her's is barely down a third of the way. She brings her hand back from her food, grinning brightly at your compliment, \"You jus' seem to keep makin' me feel nice. D'you do that on purpose?\" she asks. Smiles she may give, and nice she may feel, but despite all appearance suggesting she should, she doesn't seem to be blushing. May just be her cold nature, though, \"I don' know. Truth told, I jus' wan' to keep livin' out here. W'atever 'appens 'ere, 'appens 'ere. I can live with it, come w'at may.\"\n\nDecker shrugs. \"Well, it's their loss then.\" He offers as he sets the empty glass on the edge of the table for the waitress to pick up. \"It's just how I was raised. My ma taught me that women are to be treated like queens and should be treated with respect.\" When he says 'ma', his Southern accent really comes through. \"Plus, I like to see you smile.\" That causes him to smile too. \"As much as I miss home, I have come to like this city and it's slowly starting to feel like home. Plus the people I met here, it helps. Present company included.\"\n\nYuki smiles as you mention liking to make her smile, wiping another fry in the dressing on her plate and eating it while you finish speaking to her. \"T' be 'onest, I don' really give a lot of thought to boys or anythin' like that. I wouldn' really know th' firs' thing to do with one anyways,\" she admits, hiding what could be a blush behind her hands and sandwich, taking another bite of it, spilling a bit more of the contents onto her plate. They didn't leave her wanting for fixings here, that's for sure. Given a moment, she swallows her food and sets the dwindling sandwich down, looking back up at Decker and grinning, \"Th' city is nice…I keep thinkin' 'bout goin' home…Muswell Hill…but all I remember of it is stumblin' out of th' forest, naked as could be. Almos' got my arse ran right over, I did.\"\n\nDecker chuckles softly and nods his head at her words, taking a few bites of her pie as she speaks. \"Well, like I said, I'll be on my best behavior if you crash at my flat. You won't have to worry or anything.\" He smiles to the waitress as his second beer arrives and she takes away the empty glass. \"Well, if you do decide to move back home, I would hope that you would come back to visit and see my shows still. I would have one less thing to look forward to when I go out to perform and that would just be a travesty.\" He takes a sip of his beer before setting the glass down. \"I mean, what other beautiful woman would help me fold up my table and share a meal?\"\n\nYuki laughs a little, soft and sweet, but she shakes her head, \"I 'aven't made any plans like movin' back. Jus' maybe t' visit or somethin' like that,\" she clarifies, leaning forward and taking another sip of her beer, a bit longer this time. Ice crystals are starting to form visibly, and the air is starting to grow notably colder. She sits the glass down, then grabs a napkin to wipe her lips before continuing, \"Mmm…see, there's not much left there for me. No parents, no home…nothin' of the sort. I jus' don't remember it…ev'rythin' I knew there is gone. I don' remember mum, or dad…all I know is w'at the police told me when I came back,\" she explains, giving a second of pause before looking up at Decker and smiling again, \"Of course, that was after they gave me somethin' to wear. I s'pose they didn' feel like interrogatin' some naked girl.\"\n\nDecker ahhs and nods slowly as she clarifies a bit as to what she means. \"Oh! Okay, I see. I can understand that then. If you want, I'll go with you for moral support. Who knows what you'll find up there. Plus you might need some help if they decide to return to try to take you back.\" He bites his lower lip slightly for a moment before he takes another bite of his pie. \"But, it's good that the police decided to clothe you first before they decided to question you.\"\n\nYuki nods, taking another bite from her potatoes, \"I doubt I'll find anything worth mentionin' to be 'onest,\" she says, her shoulders slumping a bit. She looks away, sitting back as she raises a hand to gesture for the waitress, pointing at her food to let her know she'll be needing a box. That diversion taken care of, she returns her eyes to Decker, that smile returning to her lips, \"It was sixteen years ago, I mean. I don' know w'ere in Muswell Hill I lived, an' I'm sure if I did, the place would belong to someone else by now.\"\n\nDecker finishes the last of his pie, sitting back in his seat for a moment. He signals for the check as she gets herself the to-go box. \"Well, if you need me for anything, all you have to do is ask. That's what friends are for, after all, right?\" His gaze returns to hers as she looks back at him. \"Well, you may not have anything there, but you've always got a friend right here.\"\n\nYuki giggles a little at that, and she readily nods her head in agreement, bouncing just a little in her seat out of joy, \"I 'ope so!\" she says, before settling down a little, her brow lowering just a little, \"Can't say I've ever 'ad much in the way of friends…jus' the odd sort 'ere an' there,\" she explains as her box is set before her. She starts packing things into it, keeping them in their own neat places again, and then sets your number near the fries for safe keeping. It's certainly bound to be drier in there than anywhere on her body, \"I s'pose I could always use someone 'round though…\"\n\nDecker can't help but smile at the little bouncing that she does in her seat, chuckling softly. \"Well, you've got a friend here. That's for sure.\" He says with a smile before he gets out enough for the bill then starts to work on finishing his glass of beer. \"It always helps to have someone you can count on when things get tough.\" He drains the last of the beer before he looks back at her. \"So, if you need anything, just ask.\"\n\nYuki looks down at the box once it's closed, drumming her fingertips on top of it as she thinks, then she shrugs, raising her glass and drinking down the last of the beer she has otherwise seemed to hate. Setting it down, she lets out a sigh of contentment, and stands up, picking up her box and turning on her heels to face Decker again, \"Well…if I'm not comin' over to visit tonight…maybe you could 'elp me find a good place to lay my 'ead 'round 'ere?\" she asks.\n\nDecker stands up from the table as she does, raising an eyebrow at her words. He starts to follow her, but stops as she turns to look back at him. He thinks for a moment before he nods his head once. \"Well, why don't you crash on my couch then? It'll save you the trouble of having to find a place. Then you can know where I live and can stop by whenever you need a place to crash.\" He stuffs his hands into his pockets as he waits for her answer.\n\nYuki grins brightly again, bouncing on the balls of her feet, or the sneaker-sole-equivalent, \"A'right, s'pose I can do that,\" she agrees, jumping right into a big pile of trust for someone she's only met twice, who she's known only a couple of hours in personal contact. She steps back and to the side a little, accidentally bumping against an unoccupied chair, giving Decker room to move past her. If she's going to visit, he's going to be leading, \"I promise I won' go gettin' sick on th' man-funk, either,\" she offers, remembering that portion of the conversation.\n\nDecker chuckles and nods his head. \"Alright then. Sounds good. Just a second. Gotta get my bag.\" He moves towards the bar to get his bag, returning to her once he's got it and puts it on. \"Alright. Let's go.\" He says, leading the way out of the pub, picking up the table on his way out. He moves fast enough so that Yuki can still keep up with him. \"I appreciate you not getting sick on the funk. I'd feel pretty bad about that if you did.\" He offers as he leads the way back to his apartment."

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