Those Bloody Squirrels

Cast: date: '3 September 2012'
place: 'Watch HQ'
participants: 'Cedric, Ruth, Rose'
synopsis: 'Rose pays the Watch HQ a visit and does not make herself popular with the inhabitants thereof. '
log: "\n It's a little after the lunch hour on Monday afternoon, and the Watch HQ office is its usual self. There's a glint of sunlight against the windows, but it probably won't stay long - the forecast calls for possible showers this evening. If anything, it's a break in the clouds more than a bright and sunny day. Someone left the break room light on again - this seems to be a perpetual thing - but the door on the other side is closed per usual. About the only oddity is that something is throwing acorns at the window, a sharp and distracting sound.\n\nRuth's just stepped in - as ever, her actual trip up the stairs is eerily soundless, but the bang of the door shutting behind her as she departs the stairwell is telling enough. She's carrying a water bottle in one gloved hand, the other's tucked into her pocket as she makes her way towards her desk at an easy pace. Though… she pauses, glancing towards David's deskthat jacket of his, the one she left there for him yesterday? Still draped across his chair, just as she laid it. Her lips purse faintly as she eyes it for a moment, then shifts her attention towards the break room door. The plastic bottle crackles quietly as she squeezes it and strides towards the lit room.\n\n A peer outside the window doesn't reveal anything about the source of the acorns, but it sure as hell is annoying. Anyone coming into the HQ might be ducking acorns as well. Not a hail of them, just one or two at a time. \n On the other side of the break room, the usual whirring sound is very much present. Some may know that that's where the IT equipment is kept, and it's normally closed and locked.\n Thack. Another acorn cracks into the window, not hard enough to break it but definitely enough to get attention.\n\n\"Oi — the fuck?!\" Yep. Someone was definitely caught in the crossfire on their way in. \"Right — who pissed off the fucking squirrels?\" Rose makes her way to the breakroom — an unfamiliar face with a large duffel and an oversized newsie cap that makes her look something of a cross between Fivel and Eponine. \"Phasers on stun — I come in peace,\" she anounces in general, looking down and picking an acorn cap from be extremely modest cleavage.\n\n\"Someone's been slippin' them the coffee grounds again,\" Ruth answers Rose with a deadpan expression. Maybe that's a joke! Hard to tell with her, really. The dark-haired womandark everything really, long sleeves, gloves, hoodie, jeans, she's more or less covered from the neck downis on her way to the break room as well, though she pauses near her desk, tilting off a bit to the side to peer out the window. Then her attention flits towards Rose, faded eyes tracking across the woman in a brief appraisal before she's trudging off towards the break room once more.\n\n\"Brilliant. But why stop there?\" Rose asks, glancing at the desk and then following Ruth to the breakroom. \"Let's just get the little buggers coked up and see if they go Rabbit of Caerbannog on the passers by.\"\n\n\"Heh. Y'new?\" Ruth answers, a ghost of a grin quirking her lips as she slants a look back at Rose over her shoulder. Striding into the break room proper, she tugs her opposite hand free of her pocket and uncaps her water bottle with a quick twist of gloved fingers. After bringing it to her lips and tipping the plastic bottle back for a few swallows, she narrows her eye at the server room door. There's a pause; five seconds, just long enough for her standing there motionless to seem a wee bit strange, then she steps towards the door and brings up a gloved hand to knockwell, bang onthe door three times.\n\n\"New to th'Watch, anyhoo,\" Rose nods, shucking her duffel into one of the chairs at the table. \"Checking out the digs. Meetin' folks. Feelin' it all out.\" She glances around. \"This place — \" but her train of thought is derailed by the knocking. \"Angry squirrels after your IT guy, you figure?\"\n\n \"Who the fuck is that?\" A male voice calls from inside, sounding very thoroughly congested. It's a rough baritone, almost a bass voice, and on top of the congestion, it sounds shaky. \"The server's fine.\" \n\nWelcome,\" Ruth offers, almost the most unwelcome welcoming ever voiced. Still, she pairs it with a wan smile aimed back at Roseone that cuts short at the utterance from the other side of the door. \"It's Ruth. Open the bloody door, Ced.\" Her tone remains even, voice pitched low, but a voice like hers tends to carry. To Rose, with another backwards glance, she adds, \"Could be.\" presumably regarding squirrels. Fantastic conversationalist, that Ruth.\n\n\"Enraged squirrels throwing acrons at IT guys in bunkers — move over, Angry Birds. There's a new game in town,\" drawls Rose, folding her arms and copping a lazy lean on the table. Ruth's unwelcomy welcome still gets a chin-up nod and a flicker of a smile. \"Thanks.\"\n\n There's a scramble on the other side of the door, but it's a few minutes before the door finally does open. Cedric appears to have thrown on a T-shirt and jeans, the T-shirt a plain black affair. He's not wearing shoes. The room behind him is dark, but you can see the lights of IT equipment flickering and flashing behind him. He looks as if he hasn't showered in a couple of days, and finger-combs black hair back away from his face. A red nose on pale skin definitely suggests a head cold, which would match the diction of his voice. \"This had better be important,\" he tells Ruth, still sounding shaky … \n And then he catches sight of Rose. Oh no. He rubs hard at his face with a hand that suddenly trembles. \"Should've said someone new was about.\" \n\nRose's words get another, slightly more genuine, \"Heh,\" out of Ruth, and one corner of her mouth tugs up to something bordering on a real grin for a second there. She caps her water bottle and leans aside, setting it down on the counter near the coffee pot. \"If that's the worst bit've trouble we get today, it'll be a good day.\" Positivity. Ruth has it.\nBy the time Cedric's pulled the door open, she's reached a gloved hand into her pocket to withdraw a small box of Karvol Vapour Rub, which she just… holds there in the air as she looks him over, her head tilting a degree to the left. There's a pause, a lapse of several seconds, before she voices a hesitant, \"…still sick, mate?\" and gives the box a little rattle. Something, maybe a hint of concern, adds itself to her expression for a moment there.\nRuth adds, somewhat hastily, \"didn't know 'til now,\" presumably regarding the new person.\n\nRose's eyebrows immediately shoot up to exchange salacious gossip with her hairline. Previously locked away with the computers, hastily dressed — now what could he have been up to? Fighting mirth, dimples deep, she waves a hand — both greeting and dismissing the awkward. \"Don't mind me, mate,\" she says. \"Lad's got to do what he's got to do when he's feelin' poorly.\"\n\n Cedric flashes Ruth a wan smile that doesn't linger long, his eyes flicking over at Rose for just a brief instant before returning to her. He's not quite meeting eyes, the perceptive will notice, but when he does look back up, it's with a look of appraisal. \"Are you offering?\" \n Without waiting for an answer, he disappears back into the room briefly, and when he emerges, he's wearing trainers and a jumper over the T-shirt, and looks just a little more presentable. Still shaky, though, and still not quite meeting eyes. \"Don't reckon I've seen you about here before,\" he directs at Rose.\n\nAnother turn of her head and Ruth's looking back at Rose again, one brow arching. \"Oi,\" she says flatly, expression twisting to one of muted disapproval. \"Stuff it.\" There's a bit of an eye roll at Cedric's reply to the other woman, amused enough, and she sets the box aside on the counterwithin his reach, if he wants it. By the time he's returned from making himself a bit more presentable, she's retreated to the opposite end of the break room and is refilling her water bottle. No doubt she's listening, waiting to hear Rose's reply to the man, but her eyes remain on Cedric, studying him.\n\n\"What I offer,\" says Rose with a smirk, \"is an abundance of acceptance, a complete lack of judgment, and a recommendation to use the vapour rub only as directed.\" She arches her eyebrows a little at Ruth, still amused. \"Don't be constipated, Queen Bee.\" Then, to Cedric, though she includes Ruth in the tilts of her smile, \"I'm Rose.\"\n\n As Ruth sets the box aside, Cedric glances at it, and palms it with a nod of thanks. \"Ta, Ruth.\" He's about to take the medicine into the back room when Rose speaks, and he fixes her with a /look/ that is devoid of all humor, and a flash of something predatory in the dark eyes. \"You wouldn't say that if you knew anything about me.\" Beneath the words and the congestion, there's the beginning of a snarl. \n With that, and without waiting for an answer, he disappears back into the back, and returns a minute or so later with a pack of cigarettes and a lighter, smelling thoroughly like the Vapour Rub and with one fag already in his hand, still not meeting eyes. \"I'm going to smoke,\" he says shortly. \"Be back directly.\"\n\nCrackle. The plastic water bottle gripped in Ruth's gloved hand is squeezed. Tightly. Good thing she capped it again. She sucks at her teeth for a moment, mutely regarding Rose with a flat stare before answering simply. \"Sod off, Rose.\" Clearing her nose with an indelicate sniff, she turns on her heels and strides back into the office area. Or, well, she lingers just outside of the break room doorway, that is, arms folded. \"Got a question for you when you've come back.\n\nRose narrows her eyes a bit as Cedric passes by. \"I can see what you are,\" she states, flatly. \"You're not working for Them, and that's good enough for me. It has t'be, doesn't it?\" She shrugs at Ruth, sighing and rubbing an eyebrow, at a loss. \"Whatever y'like.\"\n\n Cedric doesn't answer either of the ladies; he's out the hall and down the stairs at breakneck speed. Below, the door opens, and closes, and a male \"What the fuck?\" floats up through the half-open door. Thack - something hits the door. \"Oh. Bloody ghosts.\" Then, silence. A couple more thacks of acorns after the door closes, but silence is the response.\n\nRuth pushes off of the wall and makes for her desk—the one right up against the window, bathed in whatever sunlight's left. She pulls her chair out and drops down to sit in it, water bottle set aside, gloved hands brought to the keyboard. She spends a few moments staring at the computer screen, tabbing through reports, her lips pursed to a hard line. Then, abruptly, she shoves up to her feet - fast enough that the chairlegs scrape against the floor rather loudly - and… she's out. Soundless footsteps carry her to the stairwell, down the stairs, and out the door 'round back. Who knows where she's off to.\nSome people are so unfriendly.\n\n Presently, Cedric returns. He's audible before he is visible, taking the stairs two at a time and making no effort to hide his presence. Cigarette smoke and Vapour Rub do not a pleasant or even congruous scent combination make, but at least he seems somewhat calmer, his expression and his hand steadier and his voice clearer and without snarl. He still could do with a shower, but at least he is mostly presentable.\n He does frown as he walks in and looks around, but says nothing of its cause, instead setting the pack and lighter down on the table. All of his movements seem to be at breakneck speed. \"Sorry about that,\" he greets Rose again, pleasantly enough. \"Sharing your mind with a demon that likes to toy with its prey and keeping it caged is harder than most folks think.\" He takes a deep breath and releases it, eyes on Rose - now meeting them - with a warning note under the words. \"It's been a rough week. Now,\" he adds, \"Cedric Moseley. And you are…?\" He offers a strong hand for a handshake, the end of the words going up expectantly.\n\nRose is sitting in the window, having cracked it just enough to ash her smoke outside, and enjoying her cuppa. She's managed to school herself into ignoring the sharp, random CRACK of acorns on the glass. Cedric's words upon his return get a look of mild consideration — just a slight arch of her brows. \"It seems to me that anyone underestimating the difficulty of such a thing would have to be profoundly stupid,\" she opines, after a moment of looking him over. \"And I'm a lot of things, but that's not one of them.\" She sets her tea down and grips the proffered hand, her grip hearty and forthright. \"Rose,\" she repeats, but adds (this time), \"Hawthorne.\"\n\n After a moment, Cedric releases the handshake, examines the coffee, pours out what has become sludge in the pot, and sets about making a fresh pot. \"A pleasure, Miss Hawthorne. It's not a thing I discuss with just anyone, so loads of people don't know, even here.\" *thack* as the coffee begins to brew, and he starts, then shakes his head and sits down at the table, studying Rose intently. \"What brings you here?\"\n\nThat gives her pause. She takes another drag of her smoke, frowning. \"I suppose it's easier to trust a stranger, sometimes,\" she muses. \"Less vested there.\" She returns Cedric's intent study in kind, meeting his eyes. \"I was asked to join,\" she says, simply. \"Hunters don't survive long on their own.\"\n\n \"I keep it need-to-know. Most people here aren't in the habit of taking the piss out of people they don't know, so it doesn't matter.\" While Cedric's tone is polite and not unfriendly, there might just be a ghost of a warning underneath it. \"Who brought you in, if I can ask?\"\n\n\"You can ask, but I can't tell you,\" replies Rose. \"I never really saw them, and they didn't give me their name. But they said they'd been watching me, so I guess they liked what they saw.\" As for the warning, the takes another drag and replies, \"I take the piss out of everyone and I don't see \n\n At that, Cedric's eyes narrow. \"Reckon they did.\" Placing a hand over the cigarettes, he studies Rose closely for a long moment, appraisingly, in a stare that is kind of rude. \"You know?\" he says finally, sitting back as if satisfied. \"I haven't had a proper meal in two days. I could do with some food. Care to join me? My treat.\" \n\n\"I might take the piss out of strangers, but I don't let them buy me dinner,\" Rose drawls with smiling ease. She drains her mug and flicks her cigarette out the window, shutting it good and quick to avoid the nutcase artillery. \"I'll go halves with you, though. If we go where I can get something hot.\"\n\n Cedric's first answer is an expressive shrug. \"Up to you.\" Standing and abandoning the coffee he made, he disappears into the back one more time, this time returning with an iPad in one hand and shoving his wallet into his pants with the other. He fishes out a set of keys and turns his back to her, locking the door behind him, before turning back to her. \"Leave the mug. I'll clear up later.\" "

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