Alexandra - Another Day

From Masq
Date: Setting:

IC:  09/28/2008
RL: 04/05/2011

Old Friends Antique Dealership


 A glass-frontaged store that looks like it forgot to notice the past few decades. A painted-gold logo on the main front window declares it the "Old Friends Antique Dealership" and a vase filled with flowers has been painted on the front door in bright, cheery colors. A simple awning keeps the weather off the area right in front of the store, and a small windchime has been hung from the frame to tinkle in the breeze.


 Walking into this shop is like stepping into another time. An old-fashioned, spring-mounted bell jingles over the door to warn of customers, and the warm lighting is reminiscent of candles, the air thick with the smell of dusty cloth and old books. Shelves and racks are somewhat haphazardly stocked with all manner of items, with the only commonality among them being that none are of modern make: toys from the days of the Great Depression, clothing from the Prohibition Era, a timeline of soda bottles along the back wall, and books that may not have seen the light of day in decades. An old record player frequently supplies quiet background music, and there are signs that at least one cat haunts the place. In addition, tucked away off to one side, is a small display with a sign proclaiming "Homemade Herbal Remedies" and inviting interested customers to inquire at the register.
 The counter across most of the back of the store supports a fittingly antique cash register, and must have come straight out of some old bar, being deeply varnished mahogany polished until it practically glows, with a sturdy brass foot-bar in place underneath, though no stools are in evidence. One end is clearly designed to flip up to allow access to the back area, and a door behind the counter is marked with a weather-beaten "Employees Only" sign, the former sporting a small pet door near the bottom, the latter a hand-drawn smiley-face in paint.
Another day, another dollar. You don't really see a lot of bustle and noise at places like this, so it gives Alexandra plenty of time to do things on her own time. She's gotten the inventory to mostly make sense, gotten the place pretty much arranged how she likes it, and so... it gives her time to fiddle around with other stuff. Which is why she's leaning over the counter with one of those feathers-on-a-stick cat toys, amusing the rather large feline that actually runs this place by letting him bat at it.

In through the out door comes Gareth, hands shoved in his pockets, he shoulders his way past the door, and like before, stops and looks over the place before taking a further step in, like he's committing an impression of the place to memory. Then he steps in, glancing around curiously. "Hello?" he asks, his tone polite.

The woman behind the counter looks up at the dingle of the bell on the door, and Machiavelli takes his moment of distraction to snag the toy and tug it out of her hand, quickly scampering into the shelves with his prize and earning a laugh from Alexandra before she waves to Gareth, "Hey there. Any luck finding that gift you were looking for?"

Gareth spies the cat first, and smiles, his look suggesting that cats charm him. He starts to wander cataway, then looks up and blinks. "Huh?" he asks, a bit dumbly. "Which girl?" He gets an 'aw shucks' grin and scratches behind his ear, though keeping an eye out for interesting things on the shelves as he does.

Alexandra's eyebrow quirks up at that question, and she folds her arms with a mock-chiding expression, "And just how many girls do you owe gifts?" But she's grinning, "The one at the Apothecary. Speaking of, I did find an old set of tarot cards, though they're kind of beat up."

Gareth reaches out a hand for the cat to sniff - but doesn't maintain eye contact. He responds with a lazy shrug. "You'd be surprised," the college student says. He's standing by the counter now, apparently interested in gaining the friendship of a large and fluffy cat with a somewhat surly demeanor, if his player's memory serves him. He's facing Alexandra, who's behind the counter, and pauses at the second bit she says. "Oh! No, no, I don't need it- I was, ah, I thought I was going to go away for a little while, and I didn't-" He flashes a pained look. "She's not- we're just friends," he protests. "She's know. A cool friend." He cranes his neck to glance over at the counter. "What're these tarot cards look like, anyways? Beat up might not be bad."

Machiavelli isn't so much surly as firmly convinced of his own moral, intellectual and spiritual superiority to you silly two-legged folk. But he deigns to look up from the feather-on-a-stick toy he stole from Alexandra and sniff Gareth's fingers inquisitively. Alexandra, for her part, regards Gareth's verbal flailing with an increasing air of amusement, resting her hip against the counter where she stands behind it with her arms crossed. "...I see," is all she says in the end, grin lurking around the edges of her mouth. The question about the cards, though, has her bending to rummage under the counter, "They're a divination system some people use. You familiar with them at all?"

And into that awkward scene comes Liane, to make things even MORE awkward! As usual, she arrives with that tall native American woman - lesbian lovers? BFFs? Babysitter to the wealthy? Liane doesn't LOOK all that rich...but she certainly looks like she can afford to shop here! Which is apparently her goal. She glances behind her, as if uncertain her friend will follow, but both eventually enter the shop and Liane moves to go look for the dress she was examining before - the embroidered dress, with several rips in the thread. It seems she hasn't recognized Gareth up there, yet!

"A little," Gareth says, drily. "I got the cards read to me once. Was pretty inneresting," he muses. "Can't imagine playing solitaire with them or nothing." He doesn't look up when the door opens, and totally doesn't notice Danny or Liane enter! Or he's ignoring them. It's quite possible. "I know some decks are different from the others, right? Do you have to use different hoodoo voodoo on 'em or anything?" he says this a bit dubiously.

Alexandra comes up from behind the counter with a pack of somewhat-grungy looking cards in a large ziploc. The cards themselves are noticeably larger than your average playing cards, and sized differently, longer. "Each deck has different symbolism on the cards themselves, thus carrying slightly different meanings. Some even have different cards altogether. But the general way to use them's pretty much the same." She glances up as the door's bell rings again, and grins when she spots the shy girl from before. "Just let me know if you need help with anything, miss." No bustling over and spooking the poor thing, nope.

Danny nods towards Alexandra, looking...well, just VERY SUBTLY interested in poking around. Not that those ill-suited to reading emotions, or those who don't know the bland woman would notice. Liane, for her part, reddens a touch and glances over quickly - not enough to make eye contact or anything - and gives a small nod, before taking the dress from its hanging place and downright scrutinizing those threads.

"Huh," Gareth says. He leans on the counter and looks at the cards, deeply curious. "Different meanings? Like each deck has different meanings or what?" He flashes a bit of a confused look at that. "How does that work? How do people keep 'em all straight?" He motions at the deck. "Can I look at 'em? How are these different from, like, other tarot card decks?" He has a look like he's about to handle a live snake. Interested and yet kind of repelled at the same time.

"Same way anyone keeps things straight. Memorization, mostly. Most decks these days come with little booklets with what each card means." Alexandra unzips the baggie and pulls the cards out, fanning them out a bit before selecting one and setting it face-up on the counter for Gareth to look at, putting the rest of the deck nearby, "Just for example, this one: the Magician. Usually symbolizes inventiveness, creativity, a willingness to think outside the lines, that kind of thing. You could probably find a deep, lengthy discussion on what all the stuff on the card means, but most people just go with the blurb." She gestures at the rest of the deck, "You do a reading by dealing the cards out in a specific pattern, with each location in that pattern changing what the card means a little." At the moment, Alexandra and Gareth are standing at the counter, while Liane and her attending Danny are poking about elsewhere in the shop, the former examining an old, somewhat raggedy dress.

Evening time, and Gustavo has apparently been out running. He has Nike shorts on, running shoes, a fanny pack on his right hip and a backpack on his wide shoulders. A tanktop - grey, with 'USMC' on it covers a touch of his shoulders and his chest, but leaves his heavily muscled arms and tanned skin bare, enough to show the multicolored tattoo on his right shoulder, with 'USMC', the eagle globe and anchor and 'Semper Fedilis' under it in script. He had an iPod he was listening to, tugging the headphones off his head to rest around his neck as he steps into the shop, catching his breath.

The raggedy dress apparently has embroidery, which Liane is SCRUTINIZING INTENTLY. Still, something apparently pleases her, as she attempts to get the darn dress off the hanger it's on, and runs a hand over a bit of embroidery that hasn't been torn, looking rather pleased. She begins to make her way towards the counter, but the arrival of a buff bod into the store catches her player's attention (although Alas! Liane is faithful and wed!) and she catches sight of Gustavo. It takes a moment for things to connect, but then Liane blushes and gives a tiny wave in Gustavo's direction, lingering a little. Danny just gives a nod-- and good god, did her lips move into a smile? No, it must've been a trick of the light!

Gareth has his forearms on the counter. "Ah, memorization," Gareth says. "Bane of my college life." He's still flashing all sorts of curious look at the tarot cards on the counter. He hesitantly reaches for the Magician card and picks it up, scrutinizing it, but holding it delicately, like it might crumple and turn to dust in his hand. "This'd be good for a gift, though, right? Wouldn't be too weird or nothin'?" He flashes the magician card a dubious look, and then turns to the commotion. He looks over at the jogger in military tattoos, and then spies Liane, and waves in a baffled fashion, his expression seeming to say 'when did you get here?'

Gustavo steps into the shop - doing that sort of cop/ninja/Marine scan thing to check out exits, dangers, hotties - and smiles at Liane. "Mrs. Wiggings-Greyhawk," he greets Liane, 'Ma'am." To Danny, a grin, 'Miss." as he steps in. "How are you all doing? Sir," this to Gareth, "Miss," To Alexandra.

Clearly Liane is training to be a junior ninja. Fight fire with fire, right? Or smoke with smoke, or-- something ninja-y with something ninja-y. At being spotted by Gareth, she does the only proper ninja thing to do and waves her hand in his direction, making him forg-- wait, wrong genre and timepiece. So she just goes with pretending she was too distracted to acknowledge Gareth and not approaching to stab him in the back. "H-h-hello G-gustavo. And you t-too, G-gareth." Clever girl, she even looks faintly surprised to realize the one at the counter is Gareth! "Doing a b-bit of sh-shopping?"

Alexandra shrugs as Gareth asks about gift-appropriateness, "It depends on what she's into, really. Some people regard tarot as devil-worship, after all." The card Gareth's looking at doesn't feel any more fragile than a bit of cardstock would normally, just a bit scuffed up. Probably crammed in the bottom of a storage chest for years or something. Liane's find is removed from its hanger without undue stress, and she'd certainly notice from her close inspection that some effort's been made to at least get the garment serviceable, if not into mint condition. Some moth-damage has been repaired, a seam or two fixed, that kind of thing. Gustavo's entrance has Alexandra looking up as the bell rings again, and she returns the officer's greeting with a smile, "Doing fine, officer. What brings you by tonight?"

When Gareth is called 'sir' he flashes Gustavo a deeply confused look, and immediately looks around to see who this 'sir' might be. Gareth's gaze focuses on the cat, who has an expression like the cat seems content to be called 'sir' and thus, to Gareth at least, the mystery is solved. "Ms...Liane," Gareth replies. "" he looks back at the magician card, and puts it down. Gingerly, despite its assured sturdiness. "Just some dumb cards a friend might like." He inspects the cards a bit more. "Hmm. Devil worship," he mutters, absently.

Gustavo offers a smile to Liane, and then Alexandra, "I have to find something for my father. I was hoping maybe I could find something here. Something neat, and unique," he tells the woman.

"I c-c-came here for a s-spindle before. But I s-s-saw this dress, with s-such curious emb-b-broidery. I w-want to try to l-learn how to m-make it." Liane holds out her arms, with their bounty of raggedy dress. "Th-they have some c-curious things, here. I'm s-sure you'll f-f-find something lovely." Then there's a sidewise glance at Gareth, "Oh y-yes. Quite a f-f-few things can be att-t-tributed to d-devil worship, at some p-point or another. Always g-g-good to blame the n-new, or that wh-which f-frightens you, on the d-devil instead of c-c-cowardice." She murmurs, her words somewhat vaguely said.

Alexandra's expression has something of resigned amusement as Gareth explains to Liane, and she gathers the cards back up to tuck them back into their baggie for safekeeping. "Like how some of the fathers of modern math and science were executed for heresy. 'The earth orbits the sun,' that's Satan speaking, you know." Ah, the foibles of humanity. Gustavo earns a bit of a considering look, her lips twisting to the side as she thinks. Hmm. "Could be argued most of the stuff in here falls into that, yes. What sorts of things is your father interested in?" Her lurking grin comes back, "I think I've got some World War era military uniforms, though finding one that'd fit you might be tricky."

"You and my father would have had some inneresting conversations, I think," Gareth says to Liane, diplomatically. He flashes Alexandra a patient look at her lecture - but seems to endure it with all the impatience of a young man with a lot of things on his mind. As both Gustavo *and* Liane both step up with things and items they need, he gets self-conscious. "Er," he tells Alexandra. "Looks like you're busy. I'll come 'round another time. You mind holding that for me? I gotta figure out if that'd be a good gift or not." Though he looks a little like, emotionally, he wants to pick up the cool tarot cards, he still politely steps away, making his way to the door.

Gustavo eyes the young man, frowning a bit. "I think I maybe scared him away. Well, what does the sergeant-major like? Hrm. Calling in artillery fire. He likes guns. He likes military stuff. He -really- likes taking out snipers," he says as he runs through his mental list.

"Oh, d-don't leave yet, G-gareth! I've s-something in my c-c-car for you-- I was g-going to leave it at your d-dorm, but if you're here--" Liane calls out after him. It should be noted Liane is rather soft-spoken, so her idea of 'calling out' or 'shouting' is what most people would consider conversational level or maybe a touch above. "G-g-gareth isn't very easily f-f-frightened off by anyth-th-thing except work and w-w-women, I think. The f-former he really m-must get over. The l-l-latter I think q-q-quite sensible of him." A twitch of Liane's lips, then she places the dress in a neat pile on the counter. "H-have you jewelry? Or p-pins and h-hairpieces? S-something not silver, and n-not iron or too r-rusty, though if it l-looks a bit old that m-might be fine."

Alexandra nods to Gareth as he sidles away, not particularly trying to hide her smile but also not seeming all that mean about it. It's funny! "Sure thing. Just drop by whenever." Gustavo's description makes the woman behind the counter laugh a bit, bending to once again tuck the ziplock'd tarot cards beneath the counter and proceeding to rummage a little, "Well, don't have much in terms of weaponry, certainly not functional. But... ah." She straightens again with a positively ancient flare gun in her hands, the wooden grip missing pieces from where it's dried, shrunk and split, the metal looking like someone's tried to clean rust off it without damaging anything, "Does he like restoring things?" Liane's question is much more easily answered, and Alexandra grins as she points towards one section of the store, "Those are all jewelry boxes. Feel free to rummage for whatever strikes your fancy. It's all been cleaned, but I can't promise anything to be hypoallergenic."

Gustavo thinks on that a second, "I think so. Especially if I tell him it's really hard and the nice woman at the store said it was almost impossible to restore?" he answers, after a moment or two of thought.

Gareth shoves his hands in his pockets and starts to put back on his earbuds when Liane softly calls out - but Gareth's apparently alert enough to pick it up. He stops partway to the door and peers curiously at Liane. "Oh yeah? Is it more of that omelet-pie stuff? 'Cause that wasn't half bad." He also peers at the counter, possibly to make extra sure Alexandra puts away the tarot cards and it's not accidentally sold off to some random Marine with an occult fetish.

Gustavo frowns as his fannypack beeps, and he reaches into it to pull out a cellphone, opening it up. 'Go for de Lara," he says in clipped tones, listening. 'Uh huh. Uh huh. Where? I'm near there, now. No no, I have my bag in my car, it's only a mile away, I can sprint. Ok. Yeah. Alright. Seeya there," he says, as he waves to the two women and the young man, frowning. 'Sorry about that. Work calls - I'll check in later, I promise. Drug fueled drive bys wait for no man!" he says before he heads out the door.

"Quiche." Liane supplies helpfully to Gareth. "And I c-can make another for you-- it's q-quite v-versatile. Wh-what is your f-favorite sort of m-m-meat?" She lifts a hand to wave Gustavo off, and then with a quick, brief smile towards Alexandra heads to poke about the boxes.

Another laugh, and then Alexandra unlocks the breach of the flaregun and pulls it open, needing to use both hands for the whole operation and getting an unholy squeal out of the rusty hinge, clearly having to apply a good deal of effort to even get the thing to move. She's not exactly what you'd call a musclebound amazon, though. "And I wouldn't say impossible, merely requiring time, effort and care." She grins, "I imagine a counter-sniper would know about that kind of thing." The phonecall turns her smile into a frown of concern, and she nods in understanding, "Good luck. Take care out there, officer."

Gareth steps out of the way for Gustavo - he is in fact quite intimidated by the larger man, though that might not of been why he eased away from the counter. "So if not quiche-pie, then what'd you get?" he asks Liane, deeply curious. One earbud's in his ear, he's ready to move out and into reality in only a moment's notice. "Favorite meat?" Gareth ponders this. "Do I have to choose?" He squints at Liane. "Heeeyyy, this isn't some kind of 'sexual' thing is it?" He uses air quotes.

Gareth? Intimidated? Nonsense! Liane seems to have faith in Gareth's sheer stubbornness making him immune to such silly things! Then again, the woman has Questionable Judgement. "G-g-gareth!" The woman says, blushing a touch. "Of c-c-course not. It w-will determine wh-what I put into your n-next quiche. And...w-well, I th-thought I'd try m-my hand at m-making lasagna." Liane says as she peers at a pin, "But I g-got carried away and m-make g-garlic and h-herb bread to go al-l-long with it, then I th-thought perhaps it n-needs a side and m-m-made c-cous-cous with v-v-vegetables and a l-light sauce. And th-then I thought I c-could make all that and n-n-not have dessert, so I m-m-made m-mini m-molten l-lava c-cakes." Liane sounds partially apologetic. "S-s-so I thought perhaps you m-might want some." Danny queries, in the blandest tone while glancing at Liane, "Meat fetish(?)(.)" Is it a question? A comment? A punchline? It's extremely hard to tell.

Taking a moment to horse that flaregun shut again as the cop leaves (this takes a bit of grunting and another squeak of tortured metal), Alexandra works her fingers after she's tucked it back out of sight beneath the counter. Stiff old beast. Unconcerned with his servant's troubles with her wares, the adolescent Maine Coon that actually owns this store chooses this moment to pad up to Danny and sniff curiously at her ankle. Machiavelli's not as large as some of his breed get, but he's certainly bigger than your usual housecat. Hi there.

Gareth oohs. "Lasagna? That sounds like it might be pretty good," Gareth says, with a kind of suspicious longing, the way a mouse might sniff at some tasty cheese sitting on a perfectly innocent looking mousetrap. He shifts a bit, stepping back into the store. "I'll try it and stuff," he says. "You know, just to make sure it ain't poison or nothing," he says. He glances back at the counter, then says to Liane. "Hey, so, are tarot cards a bad idea to get someone? Like 'cause everyone has their own or some secret etiquette thing?"

Boots darts in between the feet of an incoming customer. he smells fellow kitty his little nostrils working as he looks around.

Danny stares down at the large Machiavelli, then crouches down to pet it. Slowly, so the cat has time to object. Assuming there is no argument, the large woman scoops up the cat - apparently with ease. Considering Danny is built like a firefighter, construction worker, or other strength-possessing profession, this isn't difficult for her, it seems. Liane, meanwhile, pauses in her jewelry prodding to glance over at Gareth and smiles, though she does pause at his words and looks thoughtful. "N-n-not really a b-bad idea. As l-long as the p-person offering g-gives them with good th-thoughts: otherw-w-wise, they would n-need to be r-recons-s-secrated or c-carried until they can be c-comfortably used. B-but that's only if you use th-them for the occ-c-cult, and g-generally, these days, f-few really f-follow anything but th-their own p-personalized rules for the c-care and h-handling of their decks."

Machiavelli does not object, as such, though he takes a moment to consider Danny's worthiness to touch him. In the end, he suffers himself to be lifted, settling against the woman's chest, apparently quite comfortable. That is, until he catches a scent and looks around with his ears laid back. Who dares intrude in his realm? Alexandra, for her part, seems oblivious to feline intrusions, and is willing to let Liane and Gareth chat for the moment as she wipes a bit of rust off his hands and starts straightening out that dress Liane found earlier on top of the counter, probably in preparation for wrapping it up.

"But...someone who knew how to do that stuff could reconsiderate it themselves, right?" Gareth asks Liane, suspiciously. He ponders the rest of what Liane said, and once again looks over at the counter. "But would it be weird and stuff? I just don't know etiquette when it comes to, uh, 'occult' stuff." He glances at the new cat and blinks a bit. This is new.

Boots stalks cautious toward Danny peering up at the bigger cat with ears in the position of curious but cautious intrest.

"Oh, c-c-certainly. They w-would have to. And it's n-not particularly odd, no. G-g-giving a d-deck every s-season might be, but it s-seems a th-thoughtful enough g-gift, I think." Liane has not noticed the cat. She's too busy examining what appears to be an old, large silver broach, with a smooth surface and just a bit of a decorative border on it, and looks quite pleased with her find, though it's a touch tarnished. She doesn't notice the new kitty! For her part, Danny just holds the cat, scratching it with a sort of bland and respectful attentiveness that MIGHT be deemed affection, if you really stretched the meaning of the word. The smaller cat is glanced at, but Danny's got most of her attention on the big one and Liane.

Machiavelli does not appear amused by this newest interloper, glaring down at Boots and making a noise that Danny can likely feel as much as hear: a low growl that might translate clearest as "your bones look soft enough to eat, still." Given the fact he's easily three times the size of the other cat... Alexandra, either keen of hearing or just happening to glance over, spots the newcomer and immediately looks worried. "Oh dear." Around the counter she comes, headed right for the kitten, "C'mon darling, outside. Mac's territorial. C'mon..." Yes, she's trying to shoo Boots back towards the front door, though she hasn't tried to make a grab for him yet.

Boots peers up at the Big cat, sitting all prim and proper at Danny's feet and washing a paw waiting for the attention of the resident owner.. 'i.e. the other cat' Boots glances over at Alexandra with big curious golden eyes and yawns big mouthed.

Gareth hmms, thoughtfully. Still pondering what Liane said. "All right," he says, "I'll do it." He glances at the counter, then sees Alexandra moving to the door, and Boots, to shoo the new cat outside. He kind of blinks and steps back. "Man, that's an unusual-looking cat," he mutters.

For all the new cat appears to not have a care in the world, Alexandra is intent on her goal. If he doesn't move himself, she'll quite firmly scoop him up, carry him to the door, and deposit him carefully but firmly outside. Before Machiavelli decides to take matters into his own paws. And judging by the tone in that growl, it wouldn't be a polite little "would you kindly step outside" sort of thing.

Gareth steps to one side. He's got no dog in this race. Or cat, as it happens. He seems content to be a spectator in this little microdrama.

Boots Chirps unhappily a plaintive little sound and touches his nose to Alexandra's if he can reach while she carries him.. his big ears swiveling a little.. throwing full force cute at her with big wide golden eyes.

Danny doesn't look intent on keeping the cat if it chooses to jump. Apparently the idea of holding a clawing cat of this size doesn't appeal to the large woman. Liane, however, is alerted to the hullabaloo in only a vaguely distracted, 'Oh look people are moving about' sort of way. Instead, she calls out, "G-g-gareth, y-you're a boy. C-c-come here a m-moment? I w-want to get s-s-something for Th-theseus, but I c-can't choose between th-these rings or th-the n-necklace ch-charms..." Goal-Oriented Liane is sadly singular-minded!

Alexandra is unmoved by cute. Only once the intruding feline is outside and the door shut does she sigh and shake her head before turning back to the humans in the room, "Sorry about that. Machiavelli's very picky about who he lets in his store." She grins a bit at how Danny's holding said cat, who seems to be calming down now that the interloper has been dealt with. "Normally it isn't an issue."

Boots presses his little kitty face against the glass and makes a plaintive chirping cry! and paws sadly at the glass with one paw.

Gareth is happy to step away from the cat-tastrophe. He slouches away, walking down one bookshelf and then back around over to Liane. "Sure, what'cha lookin' at?" he asks Liane, curiously. He looks at rings and necklaces, looking mildly curious and baffled by the variety.

"W-well, there's th-this one." Liane says, pointing to a ring with a gloved hand. It's a silver ring with a few tiny red jewels around the center, in the front. Two of the tiny jewels seem missing, but chances are they could be easily replaced. "Th-then there's th-this one--" 'This one' is right on top of the silver one. It's either silver or white gold, with a large square onyx there. "And th-there's this lovely g-g-gold one." Which is in a case, and consists of a gold band with three diagonal lines of gems, one of diamond, the middle of some red gems a little darker than the first ring's, and another one of diamond. "Wh-which do you think?"

Minor crisis averted, Alexandra heads back behind the counter and gathers up that dress Liane found, calling over to the little gathering "I'll just get this wrapped for you, won't take too long." Then she grins, turning towards the door to the back room, "Don't try to steal anything, or Mac'll eat you." The cat underlines this by resting his head on Danny's shoulder and closing his eyes, doing that thing cats do where they seem to somehow gain weight the longer they lie on you. So fierce.

Brief gap as Alexandra's player had to run AFK

"N-no, I d-don't think so." Liane touches her own rather long tresses, "As f-for that, I d-doubt you will. I'm s-s-sure whoever r-receives them wil be t-touched, especially n-knowing your...g-general d-disfavor with such things. You're a r-rather sweet person, on occ-c-casion." A twitch of Liane's lips, and then she wrinkles her forehead. "B-bell is the p-playboy. He t-tends to have w-women left and right, and th-though he's always...g-gallant, he's n-not particularly d-d-discerning. Th-theseus is m-more low key, but he's h-had his fair sh-share of female adm-m-mirers. M-male too, n-now that I think of it, but Th-theseus has only h-had girlfriends. They u-usually get ups-s-set at the am-mount of f-female friends they have." Liane is a shameless gossip when it comes to her brothers!

Gareth flashes a...grouchy look at the compliment. But takes it. "Yeah, well..." he mutters. "Don' tell anyone, ok?" Pause. "I like the low-key dude the best. Bellephron sounds like a guy I would want to constantly smack the smirk off of his face." He blinks, then says to Liane. "D'oh, sorry - forgot he's your brother and all. My brothers were mostly assholes," he explains. As an offer of contrition, he says, "I like the Theseus dude. Cool name, too. He the one that tricked the minotaur or something?"

Liane and Gareth are by the jewelry. Danny is blandly holding a humongous cat with little effort. Alexandra is in a back room. The elephant isn't in the room.

Weston walks into the store, looking around with some interest at all of the stuff. Finding Liane and Gareth he raises his eyebrows and waves again. "Fancy meeting y'all here," he says, and approaches to take a look at all of the shiny stuff behind the glass cases.

It's about this time that Alexandra comes back out into the main room, carrying a paper bag of the sort with little paper-strip handles for carrying, which she sets on the counter near the cash-register. The jingle of the bell makes her look over and grin as Weston apparently recognizes the others already here, "Did someone put out the word this is a good place to hang out without letting me know? Hi there! Just let me know if you need help with anything." Machiavelli, the Maine Coon dozing on Danny, doesn't even dignify Weston with a flick of an ear. You have been Ignored, good sir.

Emily slips inside the shop shortly after Weston while wearing simple clothing that consists of a pink tank top and low slung black jeans. Her dark hair is gathered into a braid with a few strands escaping to fall into her face. She looks toward Liane after hearing Weston's greeting and gives her a wave, suggesting she is at least a little familar with the woman. When Alexandra arrives she gives her a brief curious study. "Oh, you work here Miss?"

"The m-mythological Th-theseus, yes. And it's q-quite all right: Bellereph-phon is quite a l-large ass. Ch-chiron is an upt-t-tight ass, and Th-theseus a s-s-smart ass." There's affection in her tone! And yet she says this all as if informing Gareth that yes, two times two is four, and two times four is eight, etc. And oh look, a Weston! Liane turns to smile at the boy, glancing up at him - perhaps lingering a fraction of a second longer than she normally might. "I'm g-g-getting gifts."

"Then I definitely like Theseus." Gareth grins big. "Always did like the heroes that tricked all the monsters, as opposed to the ones who went knuckle-to-knuckle with 'em-" He glances at the doorway. "Oh, hey, Weston!" he squints at the young man. "Fancy meetin' you here, too! You look...different somehow. Not sure why. What's up, anyways?" Spying Alexandra returning, he says, "Hey, so, ah, how much were those cards, anyways?"

Cats, eh? Weston just gives it a raise of the eyebrow, and gives Danny the ol' Nod of Silent Acknowledgement. He turns around behind him to size up Emily for a moment, grunting a quiet "How you doing," before sidling up to Gareth. "Yeah, you could say that," Weston replies, replying with a grin and a wink and looks back to Alexandra. "Yeah, this place has cool stuff."

The woman behind the counter grins at Emily openly, leaning her hands on the counter, "Own the place, actually. I suppose that counts. What can I help you with?" Gareth's question, however, makes Alexandra frown slightly in consideration, then she waves the boy back over towards the counter, "C'mere for a second, I want to check something before I answer that." It's about this time that Machiavelli decides that he wishes to be elsewhere, nudging at Danny with nose and forepaws until she gets the idea and lets him hop down to the floor with a resounding thud, and thence stalking lazily off back into the shelves.

"I'm good." Emily says seemingly in response to Weston who she studies for a shy moment from beneath the cover of her lashes. She then turns her attention to Alexandra, seemingly especially interested in the woman when she talks about owning the place. "Oh, I am looking for gifts." She says with the kind of vagueness that suggests she does not know exactly whe wants. "For a man, maybe...I don't know, cufflinks, pins, wallets, what do guys like?" She says, looking over to Gareth and Weston like she wonders if being male might give them some insight on this.

Gareth grins back to Weston, then says, "You good with jewelry or anything like that? Liane here needs help picking something out for her brothers." When Emily asks her question, he says, "Aw, I just said cufflinks. I think they're mad cool, though I don't got a suit to wear 'em with. You might want to check out an old book or something, too. Or a flask, if he drinks." He has a look on his face like he has several other guy-gift ideas, but keeps them in check. He flashes Alexandra a curious look, and mumbles, "Scuse me," to Liane and Weston, walking over to the counter with a curious look on his face. "Check what?"

Danny isn't exactly clutching the cat like a lifeline. It could probably just hop off, as if Danny was furniture. The woman seems to like pretending to be a statue half the time anyway. "I th-think you two m-might get along. He's m-mellower than you are, h-however." And then Gareth is getting called off to have himself checked for birthmakes or something. "Ah..wh-when you have a ch-chance, I'd l-like this r-r-ring, please." Liane says, before looking at Weston with a small grin. "You c-can help me p-pick out a s-set of c-c-cufflinks for B-bellereph-phon, unless you're l-looking for s-something yourself."

"They are cool." Emily says in response to Gareth. "I don't know if he reads. I mean, he probably can read, but I never seen him curl-up with a book or anything like that. He does drink though." She says, museing out loud. "Brothers.." Emily says and then peeks toward Liane, giving her a warm smile that brings forther dimples. She then looks all curious as Liane asks to see a ring and she tries to get a look at it. "You remember, Peter?" she adds to Liane. "I am looking for him."

"Old books work, yeah, flasks too," Weston replies, turning around to look back at Emily. "Peter? I've met a Peter. You know if he's got something that's worn down or broke? Replacing something of his that's busted with something cool shows you care, for sure." Then he turns around to Liane, looking down at the cufflinks with an eye for quality, as though he's been around the block where crafts are concerned. He looks around for a moment, then points out a pair of gold ones. "These," he says quietly. "What do you think?"

Emily gets a smile and a nod over to where Liane's digging through some old jewelboxes, "Seems to be a lot of that going around lately. You're welcome to rummage and see if anything strikes your fancy. There's rings, pins, all kinds of things. Or other stuff that's not jewelry, if you don't think that'd strike his fancy." Liane gets a nod and a smile, "Certainly, miss." When Gareth comes over, however, Alexandra holds out her hands to him, palm up, "Let me see your hands a moment?" Yes, it could probably seem creepy, or at least a little odd, but it's not like she's leering horribly or anything...

Gareth's expression is frankly suspicious, like Alexandra is going to play some horrible practical joke on him, but he does offer his hand out, palm up. "What's all this for? What's it got to do with cards, anyways?" To Emily he says, "I'd totally get that guy a flask. Flasks are badassed."

"This Peter is very unique looking. "Emily says toward Weston and given her tone unique might be a subtle way of saying there is something off about his appearance. "I don't know if he has anything broken, I never saw him with anything broke." She says, sounding a bit fustrated like she is gift confused. Whereas Weston as an eye for quality, Emily seems like she doesn't quite know what she is doing. "Nice.." She says to teh pair of cufflinks that Weston picks out the cufflinks for Liane. "He might wear a pin maybe or a ring, but he has really large hands, it would have to be a big one. He wears belts too. Do you have payment plans?" She then peeks back over to Gareth. "They are?" She says, sounding like she really doesn't know, but trusts his judgement on that.

Liane leans forward to examine the cufflinks, then looks over towards Weston and downright beams. "Oh, th-those are p-p-perfect! Q-q-quite lovely." She glances over at Alexandra, to see if she's done molesting Gareth or whatever it is she was planning. but otherwise lets Weston and Emily chat. Danny is doing her statue impression. Ignore her!

Alexandra just grins at Gareth as she takes hold of his hands, "Indulge a crazy old woman a moment." Her grip isn't anything to write home about, and could certainly be pulled away from without difficulty. However, all she does is look down at the boy's palms, tilting her head a little to one side as she looks them over. Her examination takes a few moments, after which she makes a soft "hm!" sound to herself and nods, letting go and looking up, "Twenty bucks and they're yours to give. I might even be able to find something nicer than the baggie, if you want?" Emily's question about payment plans makes the woman blink, then frown as though she'd never thought of the idea, "I suppose so, certainly. I don't have much that's that expensive, though..." Certainly not the stuff just sitting out for people to rummage through and handle.

"Twenty bucks? Wow, cool! And yeah, something to put it in, or I'll lose it on the way back to the dorms," says Gareth, raising both eyebrows. "I got that." He withdraws his hands, squinting. "What'd you find out, doc?" he asks Alexandra curiously. "I'm gonna die of skin cancer, aren't I?" He grins cheerfully. "Seriously, though. That mole is probably not malignant, the doctors say." He's rummaging around in his pocket for money. Which he pulls out, all crinkled, like when he gets change he just crumples it into a ball and puts it in his pocket.

"Oh, him," Weston replies, looking back at Emily. "Yeah, I think he'd like something like a flask or a wallet." He looks over at a stand with a bunch of flasks on it, and picks up a very interesting-looking one, bound in leather with what looks like a design of a bunch of marble statues, under which is inscribed 'Fonti di Trevi'. He picks it up and hands it over to Emily to examine. "This looks pretty cool," he says, looking Emily over for another second, like a quick peek at the sun - don't stare too long!

Emily peeks over toward Liane as she reacts to the cufflinks, seeming drawn to her excited reaction. She then turns her attention back to Alexandra. "Oh!" She says and finally starts to touch things, running her fingertips over a flask. She probably thinks she can afford the items now that they declared as possibly affordable. "Hmmm.." She says looking back toward Weston and dropping down her hands. She then reaches for the flask and her brown eyes widen a little with delight. "Oh, that is perfect!" She says, her voice soft and happy. "How much is this one?" She adds to Alexandra, lifting up the item.

Danny, insufferable woman that she is, walks over towards Liane and whispers something quietly in her ear, leaning forward - the two have almost a foot of difference between them! Liane glances around at the others in the room a touch curiously, before she looks in the jewelry case. Alexandra's busy, still, so Liane busies herself with checkin' out the goods. As for talk of Peter, Liane quite firmly says nothing.

Alexandra glances over at Emily's question, rolls her eyes upwards as she consults some internal catalog of values, then nods a little and answers, "Thirty dollars, plus tax." Simple enough, no frills. Gareth's question, however, makes the shopkeep hesitate a moment before she just bends to rummage that pack of tarot cards out from under the counter again, digging a moment longer before also coming up with an undyed drawstring cloth bag, which she transfers the cards to, tucking the ziplock they used to reside in back beneath the counter. Then she leans her hands on the countertop and looks Gareth right in the eyes, "Don't be afraid of who you really are, or showing it to others. It might help you with your relationships." For that moment, she's dead serious. Then she smiles a little wryly and nudges the bagged cards towards the boy, scooping up his wad of cash, "You want a reciept?"

Blink, blink, goes Gareth, and he stops a second, almost freezes. He kind of makes a face. But it's brief. Then he just kind of caassually smiles at Alexandra, and raises up his right hand. "My relationships?" He looks at his hand, and scolds it. "You told her about all those awful things we did in the dark, didn't you? You whore!" WIth his left hand, he fishes out about twenty bucks worth of change. "Sure, a receipt would be fine - you know, in case they're malfunctioning or something, I'm gonna want my money back." Pause. "Now I gotta go - me and my hand have to have a.... conversation."

Weston looks over at Liane and smiles, saying "Good, those look well-made and the olive-leaf pattern is nice." Chuckling at Gareth's joke, the guy turns his black-haired head to look at Emily. "His last name's Italian, and that writing on there looks Italian, too. I think it means 'Fountain of Trevi', if it means the same thing it does in Latin."

Emily does not believe in fortune telling, let alone actually realize that it just occured in front of her, still she gives Gareth a teasing smile when he is given advice. She then turns her attention back to Alexandra. "Oh, okay, that sounds good." She says and pulls out two twenties from the pocket of her dark low-slung jeans. "I will probably be back here again, Peter is the kind of guy who needs a lot of gifts. "Good luck with that!" She then says toward Gareth as he speaks of going to talk to his hand. She then turns her attention back to Weston and for some reason the girl seems a little wary of him and yet still interested enough to keep talking. "He's Italian. I don't know the language, but I will pretend like I understood and tell him it means that." She says, smiling, a dimpled smile.

Liane turns to look at Gareth and his preparations to leave. "G-give me a m-m-moment and I'll be r-right there as w-well." Liane calls out, before she looks over at Alexandra. "Exc-c-cuse me, I'd l-like s-several of these p-pieces, p-please." She manages, pulling out the credit card. Liane? Cash? Eh. Only when she needs to tip. As for Weston and Emily's budding friendship-- Liane has better things to worry about. But she's nosy, and glances over there fersure.

Alexandra laughs a little at Gareth's stern talk, ringing up his purchase and tearing the reciept from where it prints out of what looks like an antique cash register. Must not be so antique on the inside. Handing the reciept over, her smile's almost fond, "As you will. Good luck." But with that somewhat cryptic goodbye, she turns to her other customers. Emily's purchase is rung up and her change counted out, with Liane's right behind it, both going in paper bags instead of plastic. Liane's card gives even more lie to the antique look of the register, because one of the decorative slots in the casing apparently hides a card-reader. In the end, though, the bags are parcelled out without further incident jewelry and dress to Liane, hipflask to Emily, "Feel free to come back whenever. I don't mind company."

Weston looks Emily right back in the eye, not blinking for a few moments, but then he breaks it and looks over at Alexandra. "Yeah, this place is full of neat stuff," Weston says. "I'm a woodcarver, too, in case you're in the market for new art."

Gareth glances down at his purchase a bit dubiously, but when Liane calls out, he stops all politeness and waits by the door. "Is this about the lasagna?" he asks, hopefully. He also glances between Emily and Weston - briefly - and then back at Liane and Alexandra.

Emily has some sort of reaction to Weston's stare, a warm pink-flush painting over her cheeks and her breathing elevating just slightly. She steps toward him without seeming fully aware of this, but despite this reaction, the hint of wariness remains her there is a tension about the way she carries herself. "Hmm..." She says, looking back to Alexandra, smiling quickly and reaching out for the bag. "Thanks."

"Y-yes. It's in m-my car, but it's l-l-locked." Liane says to Gareth, holding her bags and shuffling over as she attempts to put her card back in her slim little wallet without bumping into anything. Danny straightens from leaning against the way and follows after, at a casual pace, with a nod towards the others.

Alexandra gives Weston a smile and a nod and plucks a business card from the little stand of them by the register, offering it over to him, "You can at least bring your things by and I'll have a look to see what you might get for them. Being an appraiser king of comes with the territory." As folks start heading out, she offers the lot of them a wave, "Have a nice night!"

"All right, then, lasagna!" says Gareth to Liane, suddenly deeply cheerful. "Lead on!" He's still fiddling with his package. Thinking of something. For a brief flit of a moment, when all eyes are seemingly on Emily and Weston, he makes the tiniest of frowns.

Weston mirrors Emily's gesture, stepping forward, seeming to get the cues himself but not really getting it either. He does turn around to take Alexandra's card and look quizzically at Gareth, but then he just turns around to look at Emily again. "If you're not doing anything tonight, I have some free time," he says amiably enough.

Emily glances briefly toward Gareth but if she notices his frown or not is hard to tell. She holds the paperback, crinkling it up around the top in the process to make a kind of handle. "Oh." She says toward Weston's first like she is not quite sure how to respond him. the flush remains staining into her olive-tone cheeks and her smile returns, but it is a stalling smile, maybe moreso than a natural one. "Alright, coffee or something. My boyfriend would be pissed otherwise." She says, but despite that statement seems drawn to him, like had some primal reaction she does not fully understand.

Liane smiles indulgently at Gareth, and once her credit card is away, she reaches for her keys. "W-w-wonderful." There's a glance back as Weston tries to make friends -- clearly they're just trying to make friends! "L-let's go g-g-get the bags. Do you n-n-need a r-r-ride back on c-campus?" Liane queries, glancing up at Gareth slightly. She missed whatever small frown was there -- unless it's still there, in which case she looks at him in slight puzzlement, and seems to be mentally checking off a list, before looking from Gareth to the friendly children.

Gareth catches Weston's confused look, and his look quickly turns into a kind of a chuckle. He rubs his nose. "All right, see you two." He says to Weston, "Hey, Wes, let me know when you're free for math tutoring." And then he turns, looking down at Liane. He grins cheerfully. "Sure! I'd love a ride! It's not much of a walk, but I am SO FUCKING LAZY for some reason!"

"Oh, okay," Weston says, shrugging. "Sure yeah, no big deal. Just looking to hang out." He turns to Gareth at his chuckling, following his gaze for a moment and grinning back. "Okay yeah, later Gareth! I'll see you. You too, Miss Liane." He then says something in a foreign language to her!

Emily peeks back toward Liane and Gareth as they seem to be leaving and gives them a wave. She then turns her attention to Weston. "You, know, talk, be friends.." She says and then smiles, a dimple framed smile. "I actually like hot chocolate more than coffee." She says and starts toward the door of the shop.

Liane grins over at Weston. and says in a foreign language, "....... .... .... ... it .. . ... .... ..... ... .... your ...... ... ..... ... .... You've ... .. ..... ........... ... a ... days .. ..... .. ..... ... .... ......." And then she looks over at Gareth and smiles, 'I h-h-hadn't noticed. You're always s-so energ-g-getic and ch-cheerful.' Liane says this with a straight face, save a slight crinkling around her eyes that's rather hard to see, considering she glances towards the ground almost immediately. The other two get a wave as Liane absconds with Gareth.

Weston looks over at Liane and nods, responding one more time in that foreign language, then turns to follow in Emily, saying in English this time, "Yeah? I'm a tea fan, myself, but chocolate is awesome. I think there's a new place around here what sells all that!" Thus he follows after the girl, not really sure what is going on but rolling with it anyway!

Emily just seems baffled as Liane and Weston speak in another language. She then turns her attention back to Weston. "Peter says I am his girlfriend." She says, almost as if giving him some kind of warning. She then starts from the shop, holding her back and apparently on the way to get chocolate with Weston.