|Location||NYPD - New York|
|Summary||Nicodemus finds himself in the slammer.|
The first time somebody called about a big, black, yellow-eyed dog rooting through their garbage, animal control came out and collected the creature. It was kind've a shock, however, when the following morning found a naked man waking up in the kennel where said 'dog' should be. He let himself out, borrowed a pair of scrub pants and headed back out into the wilds of the city with a murmured apology for the confusion. The second time somebody called about a big, black, yellow-eyed dog howling in tandem to ambulance sirens, animal control called Mutant Affairs. Which is how Vega Zhang found herself obliged to wrangle a rather unhappy black wolf into a holding cell and leave it to 'cool off' (or whatever it is wolves do) over night.
By the following morning, the wolf has once again been replaced by a naked young man. He's scruffy and a little wide-eyed where he sits stiffly on the bench, his legs drawn up and his arms wrapped loosely around them, chin resting on his knees. He's silent, occasionally blinking, as he stares at the door to the cell as if staring alone might make it open. Or, at least, might prepare him for whoever will ultimately appear on the other side of the bars to deal with him.
The second time... Dectective Zhang drew the short end of the stick on assignments. Her partner had already left to 'Pick her kid up from school' - which remains the most defensible 'I need to leave excuse' - meaning she was left to wrangle a wolf into a holding cell alone. The camera footage will show her closing the door and telling the wolf to 'stay'. Sit boy. Good boy. She probably thought this was funnier than anyone else.
The following morning rolls in, boots solidly announcing her presence as she takes her sweet time arriving at the cell, with two paper cups of coffee. His captor is petite, pink-haired and looks like sleep wasn't super high on her priorities the night before. She stops at the door, leaning against the bars as her dark eyes rake over his figure. "Good Morning."
Brown eyes snap to the detective as she appears, though they're not exactly surprised. Her footfalls announced her seconds before she stepped into view, after all. So the former wolf looks wide-eyed, wary, but not startled. His gaze flicks from Vega to the point where door bars meet wall bars and back again. "Can I come out?"
Lifting a hand, Vega takes a sip of her coffee, watching him all the while. "That depends on how cooperative you're feeling today, Mister..." There is a polite pause, waiting for him to fill in his name.
A small shudder runs through the man in the cell, and goosebumps prickle along his arms, causing the wisps of hair covering them to stand on end. "What do you want?" he asks softly. Then, after a tight swallow and the realization that the detective has requested one thing of him already, he adds, with some slight reluctance, "...Nicodemus."
"Coffee?" Vega wonders, extending a hand through the bars. Not the one she's drinking. Obviously. If he indicates 'yes', she'll go ahead and enter the cell with it. She waits to answer his question.
Nicodemus looks at the offered paper cup, then up at Vega's face, and then back down at the cup again. This could be a trick question, after all. There might be a test on it, later. His body twitches again, though this time because he draws in several small, quick breaths through his nose in rapid succession. Finally, he leans forward enough to curl a hand around the cup. Rather than drink from it, he rests it on his drawn up knees, his chin lifting to relinquish the spot.
Right. He's got the cup. Good. Gesturing for a guard to unlock the cell for her, Vega has them lock it behind her once she's inside. She still has her coffee in hand. Rather than invading Nicodemus's space, she takes up a lean against the door. "Alright, Nicodemus, right?" She looks at him to confirm, if briefly. "I assume you're new to the city. And that you have a last name to go with the first." It's pretty standard. The smile she flashes him is brief. "Unfortunately,no matter how new you are, we can't allow mutants to roam freely around the city as wolves, Nicodemus. It tends to make people nervous. You're lucky animal control were called to ease your transition. I assume you've been doing this for awhile?" This - being the whole turning into a wolf thing.
If there is a last name to go with the first, it still isn't offered, though Nicodemus does give a small nod as Detective Zhang repeats his name. He listens to the rest of her words, swallows once, and makes no move to lift the cup of coffee to his lips. It takes him a beat too long to register that the last question asked isn't rhetorical, but then he offers, "Oh. Yes."
"I'm Detective Zhang," Vega offers, really friendly-like, "Mutant Affairs." Her mouth resists the urge to tweak at his lack of a name. She replaces the urge with a sip of coffee. "You will have to give your full name before we can release you." Sip sip. A thoughtful nod meets his answer. "You're not all that old either..." This is said more softly. "What brings you to New York?"
Nicodemus again looks to the door when Vega mentions 'release'. "Barns," he offers simply and succinctly, his gaze resting on the lock as if it might magically unclick on its own, now he's given it the password of his full name. "Um," he offers, trying and failing to drag his focus back to the detective, "a bus did."
It doesn't quite work like that. Vega blinks at Nicodemus's answer, one brow arching higher than the other. Right. "And to what end? A job? An adventure?"
"To..." Nicodemus's brows draw down in mild confusion at the line of questioning, "...be here?" He watches the door a moment longer, but when it still doesn't open, he looks, instead, down at the coffee in the cup, watching the way in reflects the interior of the cell on its surface, beneath the twisting coils of steam.
Inwardly, Vega sighs. She takes another draught of her coffee before she speaks again. "Mr. Barnes, before your release you are going to be cited for Disorderly Conduct according the laws of the City of New York. You will need to show up for your court date, following your citation." She taps a finger against her cup. "In the mean time... it would be a good idea for you to both look for work and to find away around the state of affairs that led you...here." A cell. "Is it a moon thing?" Change with the moon. "We can't have wolves running around."
Nicodemus gives a small nod for all of this new information. "Court," he repeats quietly, "Um. Okay." He says nothing about finding a job or reevaluating his life, though he doesn't argue against their necessity, either. Is it a moon thing? Nicodemus finally looks up from his coffee, and a corner of his mouth lifts in a tiny, bemused smile. "No."
"Ah, well. That would be simpler." Probably. It would move in cycles at least. Pushing off from her lean, Vega polishes off the last beit of her coffee. "Right. So, someone will be in to cite you officially with the paperwork. And... a pair of pants will be found." So that he won't be getting a felony.
"How long?" the naked man asks on the heels of 'someone will be along...' He doesn't have anything to say about pants, though presumably he understands he ought to be wearing them. "How long will I be in here?"
Vega pauses by the door, glancing upward like she can see a clock. "If nothing bumps the queue, and you're helpful, you should be out by this afternoon." Her cup crinkles in her hand, pink hair flicked back over her shoulder. Dark eyes turn to regard him with a tip of her head, mouth hooked up on one side. "I don't want to see you back here, Mr. Barnes, so please take care. And welcome to New York."Nicodemus stares at the detective, his mouth dropping open for a brief moment. Afternoon. Hours away. Hours. The coffee cup jiggles as the hand holding it starts to shake, and he sets it down beside him so he can press his face into his knees. "Okay," he whispers, the word trembling. He drags in a deep breath and tries, a little steadier, "Okay. Afternoon. Okay." The kindly(?) welcome goes unfortunately unnoticed, and Mr. Barns is left to wait out the rest of his short incarceration.