Boys And Their Toys

Cast: date: '31 October 2012'
place: 'London Library'
participants: 'Cedric, Zvi, Levi (run by Alister)'
synopsis: 'A child running around the stacks in the library has something that''s not really a toy….'
log: "\n The London Library, not necessarily the creepiest place in the universe, especially in the day. There's plenty of people wandering around, as always, but the place is so large that in some parts it can just plain feel empty. In one particular part, with a few small square tables at the end of seemingly endless rows of books, with windows lined up on the wall, is a little boy. \n\n He sits in a chair playing with a Rubix cube, no more than five years old, wearing a red t-shirt, some white jeans, and a pair of black Converse. On the table in front of him is The Cat in the Hat, but he seems too busy with his cube to read it.\n\n Cold rain lashes against the windowpanes outside, driven in gusts and sheets by the wind. Luckily, it's warmer in here, but the sound and the occasional rattle of the windowpanes serves as white noise that might easily drown out the sound of footsteps, the ruffle of pages, or the quiet conversation of a library. \n\n Not too far off from the little boy - a table or two away perhaps - is Cedric, hard at work on the iPad set out on the table in front of him. Not normally his choice of haunt, but peace and quiet is hard to come by at the office, and it's peace and quiet he needs to accomplish his current project. Clad in a black turtleneck beneath a hunter-green hoodie that has clearly seen use and abuse, a pair of jeans, and Doc Martens, with a black jacket slung carelessly over the back of his chair, he seems intent on his task. The iPad is propped up on its case, and he is busily typing away on the Bluetooth keyboard set into it. A hard, pink stress ball sits on the table next to it, but for the moment is being ignored.\n\nAnd Zvi is here, a new arrival as his black suitjacket is still speckled with wet raindrops. There's no sign of a heavier coat or umbrella so perhaps he used the coat check before he came. The bearded rabbi's eyebrows wrinkle together as he spots the little boy and his Rubix cube, and then he looks around the room for some sign of parents.\n\n There are no parents anywhere to be seen, but parents he's simply waiting for them! Either way, the little boy picks up his copy of Oh, The Places You'll Go. That was the book he always had, right? At the very least, there's no Cat in the Hat book to be seen. \n\n Once it's picked up, the boy stands and begins heading right over to Cedric. The Rubix Cube is held out to him, and the little blonde boy says, \"I'm supposed to give this to you!\" he states with a bright smile, hugging his book tightly.\n\n Wait. There's a kid approaching him. Cedric looks up from his work, and eyes the little boy with some trepidation. \"Uh … who said you should do that? That's yours.\" No, clearly someone is not good with kids. A touch of a button on the iPad, and the screen goes blank, he picks up the pink rubber ball and begins working it with his right hand, studying the boy closely. \"You should give that to your mum.\" \n\nZvi frowns and says, in the sort of half-mumbly-in-my-beard, half-authority-voice he uses for little kids, \"Where is your mother, young man?\" He takes a few steps over to them both and tilts his head to look at the kid, before bending down a little. Less scary that way.\n\n \"Me mum works here. This isn't mine.\" the boy sits the cube next to the iPad, then holds up the book in both hands. \"He let me play with the toy while he looked for the book. Then he gave me the book and I was supposed to give you the toy!\"\n\n Cedric makes no move towards the cube, just yet; instead, he collapses the case on the iPad, folding it up as if to put it away. He leaves it where it is, though, and instead turns in his chair to face the boy. \"Who's he?\" He tries to imitate Zvi's 'speaking to children' voice, but his deep baritone voice doesn't lend itself to kindliness, and it comes out sounding a little harsh.\n\nZvi isn't sure if this situation is weird or not yet, and his glances are the glancing looks of someone trying to decide. The Jewish guy looks from the Rubix cube to the iPad, to the kid holding the book and then up at Cedric. He shrugs a silent shoulder: I don't know either. Kid looks like a kid with a book, how suspicious can /that/ be? He chooses not to ask a question, but watches the kid with anticipation.\n\n \"The tall bloke in the suit!\" the kid answers, then starts to slowly back up. \"I'm gonna find me mum!\" he states before running off down an aisle. Apparently the two of them are pretty scary to him! \n\n But then, before he can put that iPad away completely, it suddenly screeches with audio distortion for about two seconds.\n\n Cedric starts to look after the boy, utter bafflement written plainly across his face, when the iPad screeches unbearably. \"For fuck's sake,\" he swears as he cringes, apparently oblivious to the nature of the man next to him - indeed, he's barely looked at Zvi. \"If this is buggered up….\" He pulls the iPad immediately away from the cube and opens it with explosively fast movements, hitting the large button at the bottom to make sure it fires up normally, with the occasional evil look at the cube. He does not touch it, yet. \n\n Only when he's verified that the device is still operational does he look up at Zvi. \"Who in the bloody ….\" He chops his word off abruptly. \"Was that?\"\n\nZvi isn't too good on what is and isn't normal behavior for an iPad, but the kid seemed weird. When he dashes off, Zvi tosses up a quick hand and says, \"Hey! Stop!\" For all the good that asking kids to stop running has ever done. He turns back to Cedric and says, \"Some kid. They don't /always/ make such noise,\" he says - pointing to the iPad, and raising his brows in question.\n\n There's more distortion, this time video distortion. For a brief few seconds one can see a static filled image of what may be large green tentacles going endlessly into a pitch black sky. Then the picture switches back to normal, simply showing the desktop icons… until it distorts again, and Cedric can see himself from the perspective of his camera. Except behind both he and Zvi is a man in a black suit, difficult to see in the midst of orange, static-filled distortion. It's too quick to make out his face, if he even had one, sure didn't look like he did. Then the iPad finally stops malfunctioning. \n\n No one is actually there if they turn to look. Or, if he was, he sure isn't anymore.\n\n The look on Cedric's face says pretty clearly that this is not normal behavior for the device — and the frown of mingled confusion and wariness only deepens at the image reflected by the iPad. Another glance at the cube - the ball in his hand gets immediately put down, where it rolls off the table, but he utterly ignores it. Suddenly, he's all focus. \n\n Quickly, he looks up at Zvi. \"Got a sheet of paper and a pencil someplace?\" The question is quick, low, and serious, his eyes dark. He turns back to the iPad, adding, \"Don't touch that cube.\" He doesn't look back, instead quickly tapping at icons, pulling up the camera roll to see if anything was recorded by the camera while it was turned on.\n\n\"Blank?\" Zvi says, totally confused by modern technology - it takes him a second to really get the request. He only caught half of it over the shoulder anyway, but as he digs into his suit jacket for a small notepad and a pen, pilfered from the little synogogue's tourist shop, he hands them both over. Not like Cedric can read any of his notes: they're in handwritten Hebrew. \"Why? Is it electric? I don't think they are - I had one a couple of decades ago, you can peel the stickers off…\"\n\n The camera did indeed capture the images, and possibly more hidden in its memory. But the last thing the two may realize, after things have become less strange, is the fact that the Rubix cube appears to be solved.\n\n \"Yeah.\" Cedric doesn't look away, although he relaxes some as he sees that the images shown are in his camera roll. He takes the pen and notebook and, rather than writing, begins to /draw/, fast and intently. The man is a talented sketcher, although there are limitations to a simple pen as a medium, his style stark, realistic, and disturbing in nature, with lots of extra lines. \n\n Ignoring the cube for the moment, he quickly renders the tentacles against the sky first. THat doesn't take long, but he glances again at the iPad and pauses, flipping to the next picture, then back. Finally, he looks up at Zvi, clearly more than a little disturbed by the odd events. \"No. Shouldn't be able to affect an iPad at all. Something's dodgy about it.\" He looks at it again, finally, and frowns. \"Wait, that wasn't … Fuck.\" \n\nZvi looks up from the sketches and says, \"He moved the stickers, I'm sure.\" Or is he? Something about the statement doesn't feel right, and he can't quite shrug off the feeling of discontent that comes from looking at the toy. After a bare moment, he straightens and buttons his jacket. \"Keep it,\" he says, waving hand around pen and notebook. He clearly intends to split: back the other way towards the coat check, earlier reason for being in the library forgotten.\n\n \"Probably. Fast little bugger.\" Cedric shrugs, glancing again at the cube. As the other man turns to walk away, though, he looks up. \"Cheers. Oi, you ever seen anything like this before?\" he asks curiously, trying to forestall Zvi before he leaves. \n\nThey're in a library room. Zvi, a rabbi in a dark suit, is making a fast pace for the door. Cedric is sitting down nearby, and has an iPad out, a pen and a notebook handy. He's been sketching something from the screen. Zvi does pause, and he answers Cedric slowly: \"I have seen many, many things. Many things I've not wanted to see, and enough to know when to leave things be. You should try and forget this ever happened.\"\n\n Cedric looks up from where he's sitting at a table, then back down at the images, then back up at Zvi. \"Right. Stay dry, mate.\" With a quick flick of a finger, he locks the iPad and shuts the notebook, but leaves both, along with a solved Rubik's Cube, sitting on the table. Quickly, he pushes himself to his feet and seeks out a clean sheet of printer paper and a pencil rather than a pen, taking them back to his table with him.\n\nZvi seems confused: just going to leave the iPad there? He really doesn't want to linger, though, so he nods and says, \"Be well,\" before he sees himself out again. Still at a pace.\n\nLevi happens to be loitering near wherever Cedric forages his paper, perhaps noticed on the way back to the table. Or when he gets back. \"Oh, hey,\" says he, bedecked in his normal cowboyesque manner, even with the stetson on today. Hands in the pockets of his jacket, he was apparently looking about for just the man. \"Was lookin' for you. You got a bit?\"\n\n \"Oi.\" Cedric's expression is serious and focused, and more than a little troubled. Something's up. \"Yeah, give me a minute.\" He takes the paper back to the table, seemingly not caring whether Levi follows or not, and settles back down at his chair, proceeding to draw in quick, bold strokes, something that only he can see. \"Don't touch that cube,\" he tells Levi absently if the man follows.\n\n What on earth could he be doing? Whatever it is, it's serious and important business, and something's bothering the man. As he continues to draw, a form takes shape. It's the face of a little boy of about five or so, drawn in a starkly realistic style with a lot of extra lines. Cedric's good. The top edge of a book is visible at the bottom of the picture, but it appears to be a portrait of sorts.\n\n\"Uh, sure.\" Levi follows in step behind the man, waiting patiently across the table for… whatever it is he is doing to be finished. He continues to stand, and checks his phone absently. At length, he becomes bored or impatient, and steps around the table so he can see whatever it is that Cedric is doing. \"Huh.\"\n\n Once Cedric is done rendering the image, he tucks the sheet of paper in the iPad, folded, shoves the notebook and pen in the pocket of the jacket slung over the back, and retrieves the stress ball he's been uses from the floor at his feet. Deep breath, and he pulls the muffler off the back of the chair and wraps the cube in it before setting it with the iPad. \n\n Deep breath, and a long look at both iPad and cube, and he flops down in the chair. \"Sorry about that, mate. I'll explain later. What's up?\"\n\nThat entire processif that's what it can be calledis observed studiously with a raised brow. Levi is not so brusque as to interrupt a process. But man if that's not a bit weird. \"Hokay, whatever you say, bud.\" Taking a breath, he steps forward, arms folded over his chest now, rather than hands hiding in his pockets. \"Jus' saw that your file crossed my desk. Had a gander. Movin' it on t'be approved an' such.\" He lets that sink in for a moment. \"I see why they nabbed you for the field.\"\n\n Cedric freezes as the sense of what Levi is saying sinks in, and he just stops, eyeing Levi with an expression that can only be described as frightened. It's gone as quickly as it came, though, and he looks down at the table. \"Yeah, medical said I was clear and they'd put it through.\" Not too happy about that thought. Yep, something's definitely bothering him. Probably more than one something. He just waits, then, raising his eyes back to Levi's and waiting. \n\n\"You're givin' me this look like knowin' this changes somethin',\" Levi replies, rolling one shoulder back, gaze flicking to some shelf of books away in the corner. He takes off his hat, shaking it a little to divest it if some lingering water from somewhere. \"Figured I'd just let you know I'd looked into things, an' am speedin' the process along like I promised.\" The hat is replaced atop his head, and her turns back. \"Somethin gnawin' on your britches, bucko? Y'look spooked or somethin', business aside.\"\n\n Whatever Levi said, something in it causes part of the tension - in fact, the greater part of it - to ease out of Cedric's shoulders, and his expression clears - somewhat. He lets out a deep breath. \"Right. Ta for that, though … on Halloween?\" _Really?_ his tone says, even if his words do not. \"Happy Halloween, Ced,\" he mutters, mostly to himself.\n\n As for the other thing? \"Not here, mate. I should get back to the office anyway.\" That comment is accompanied by a meaningful look. Something happened, something that should be discussed behind closed doors. \n\nHuh. Levi's expression seems to say. \"Sure, bud,\" he returns, tipping his hat towards the man, and checking his phone before pocketing it. Then it seems to dawn on him. \"Oh, huh, it is the thirst-first, ain't it? Guess I forgot all about that. Yanno. Given it's kinda Halloween all the time for some of us.\" With a wink, he makes as if to turn and go. \"Well, catch up with me later an' tell me about it, hey?\"\n\n \"I'll file a report.\" Cedric's already slinging on his jacket and collecting his various things - he's careful never to touch the cube with his bare hands. The comment about it being Halloween all the time for some of them draws a snort. \"Oh, right.\" He pauses, tucking the iPad into the back of his trousers beneath the jacket. \"Got someone with no credentials who needs to file an incident. She's new, haven't seen the paperwork yet. Should I file for her or wait?\" \n\n\"Go ahead. If anyone, I'll trust you'll do it right, so you won't later have to fuck about with the digital side of things t'get it fixed.\" A bright laugh, and Levi salutes the man. \"Jus' keep me apprised, an' I look forward t'hearin' what happen. You need me later, I'll likely be on duty with the MET. Been mercifully slow for a few days, but that won't keep up.\" Then turning, a wave over his shoulder. \"Alright, man. Take it easy.\" And he's off.\n\n \"Right. Cheers.\" Cedric looks after Levi for a long moment as he goes, then pushes in his chair and makes his way out of the library himself.\n"

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