|2046-09-27 After a Silent Weekend|
|Summary||Irene checks in on Vega after too much radio silence. They discuss cousins, careers, and tacos.|
1:58 AM Vega: Urgh. Well that threw me for a loop. False alarm tonight at Open Hands.
1:58 AM Vega: Thought it was going to be more of those FoH bigots, but it was actually just a kid manifesting. Shitty way to do it. Broke the front window.
1:59 AM Vega: I am going to attempt to go back to sleep now. Possibly forever.
3:30 AM Vega: Fuck. I am a liar and I am going to the Shop. Catch up with you later.
6:15 AM Irene: At Open Hands? Isn't it kind of late for you to be there?
6:15 AM Irene: At least it was a false alarm.
6:16 AM Irene: Those windows cannot catch a break.
7:10 AM Vega: No. They cannot.
7:10 AM Vega: Their security feed sends me and a few of their staff members an alert when it is triggered. The window breaking was more than enough.
7:16 AM Irene: Ah
7:17 AM Irene: Didn't know you were still involved with that.
5:57 PM Irene: You home?
7:27 PM Irene: Was in your neighborhood picking up dinner after work. Just saying hi.
10:07 AM Irene: What are you up to today?
12:48 PM Irene: [Picture: Giant aquarium]
1:37 PM Irene: [Picture: Shark from below]
2:01 PM Irene: [Picture: Idris in front of jellyfish tank]
2:18 PM Irene: [Picture: Selfie of Irene and Idris with beluga in background]
1:10 PM Irene: Where are you?
11:31 AM Irene: Hey
2:15 PM Vega: Hey
2:16 PM Vega: Loved the aquarium pictures. Has Idris decided that is his next career? You might have a cousin in that beluga.
2:20 PM Irene: Hey
2:20 PM Irene: You know how he feels about the ocean.
2:21 PM Irene: Beluga looks more like one of your cousins.
2:23 PM Irene: Where are you?
2:24 PM Vega: I am telling Samad you said that.
2:24 PM Vega: Workshop. I just finished a shift for Citadel. It's been… a weekend.
2:29 PM Irene: He won't believe you
2:30 PM Irene: See you in 20
2:31 PM Vega: He will. I'll send him pictures. [fish emoji]
2:31 PM Vega: Okay?
Twenty minutes seems like wishful thinking as an estimate of travel time from someone who lives well outside of Manhattan. Even driving over the speed limit, that'd be difficult. But in just about that time the door to Vega's workshop clicks as it unlocks and Irene lets herself in. Her hands are full, walking with a brisk pace towards a worktable. Well, the nearest one that looks at all clean. A bag clearly containing takeout is set down on it. "I was already in the car," she explains of her speed, since she probably hasn't developed either mind-reading powers or teleportation over the weekend.
There is one that looks decently clean not too far from the door. Although, the pile of parts on the floor next to it suggests that it may have been somewhat lazily 'tidied' after their brief conversation. "You know… I really didn't expect you to be /that/ quick," Vega quips from up on the second platform, pulling a shirt over her still wet hair. The t-shirt is rather frayed at the edges and well worn, it matches the look of the workshop and of Vega. "What are you doing in this part of town?" She wonders, leaning against the rail.
"Surprise." Irene eyes the parts on the floor and steps carefully around something, eying the table a moment before setting the bag down on it. "Feeding you," she answers, looking up at Vega without much expression, though her dark eyes are are more than casually watchful, fixing on her friend with a particular kind of concern.
"You came all the way out to the Lower East side just to feed me?" Vega says with a crooked smile, adding, "That's how I know it's love." It almost seems as if she can bluster away that concern, hopping over the railing and floating down to the main floor. It's a leap that would break anyone else's legs at landing on the hard, cement ground. She touches down light as a feather, settling only a few feet away. "What did you pick up?"
Well...not /anyone/ else. "Hm," Irene murmurs, watching Vega leap the railing. The corner of her mouth quirks, but she does not quite smile back. There are a lot of people Vega could bluster right on by...but probably not this person. "Burritos, chips, salsa," she lists, jiggling the bag before letting it go. "Also..." She rifles through the bag slung over her shoulder and pulls out a stack of paper, slapping it onto the table near Vega. It's actual, from trees paper and appears to have been tabbed and color coded.
"Music to my ears," Vega notes of that list, sliding to a stop next to the table with a grin. The bag on the table is in her hands as she peers curiously in there. Burritos. Chips. Salsa. The paper crinkles in her hands. The /paper/ is regarded with rather more surprise as it hits the table with an ungainly thwack. "Why… is there paper?" She wonders, sliding aside the bag with a soft sigh as she pokes the stack with a finger. "A /color/ coded stack of paper?" Her brows arch, picking up a few pages to skim through.
What's in the bag is exactly what Irene said would be, and maybe a little more, in terms of dip and sauces. Which very subtly speaks to her concern almost as much as her showing up abruptly with food does. Her expression goes a little flat at Vega' sighing. "Because there is." There's nothing wrong with paper, Vega. "Its organized," she defends. It's not too large a stack, really, but it has been categorized and subcategorized by topic. And the topic at hand is very clearly security...and business.
The guacamole is ever Vega's favorite. Her expression softens subtly at the additional dips and sauces in the bag, a brow twitching upward. "You couldn't send me a digital file or an email?" She counters skeptically, fingers flipping quickly through the pages, brow furrowing as she reads through. Her dark eyes widen as she looks up at Irene, "This is…"
"It's typed up at least. Stop complaining." Irene replies with a sigh, resting a hand on her hip and tilting her head a bit to the side as she watches Vega. "Overkill, probably," she answers.
"Well, I suppose I should be glad you didn't write it longhand… Had enough of that this week." The wry edge in her voice is a little distant, Vega's hands and mind are caught up in the papers. "Thorough," she judges. There's approval there. Gaze fixed on Irene, she smiles crookedly. "So you want to do this with me?"
There's a lift of brows for Vega's comment on getting things longhand. "I'll be sure not to show you my notes," Irene murmurs, voice a little dry. There's an unspoken question there still, in the air between them. She is silent a moment. "I think we need to talk about what we want to do...but yeah."
A hint of a smirk touches Vega's lips in answer to that dry response. "So thorough." Lifting a hand, she pushes her wet hair back over her shoulder and then wipes it on her shirt. That hand is extended with a grin. "I agree… but. Partners?"
"My paperwork was always comprehensive," Irene replies with a slight lift of her brows and a small smile. "Partners," she says as she takes her former-partner-now-partner-again's hand, the word quiet but warmly spoken. Of course, then she ruins the moment by not letting go of her hand. "That means you're not going to be able to vanish on me for several days at a time." Vega.
"And actually involving paper," Vega teases with a bit of a sigh, matching that lift of brows with one of her own. A more genuine smile spreads across her features as Irene takes her hand, clasping it firmly as they shake. The contact lasts longer than she expected, prompting another lift of brows. "Something came up," she answers, eyes flitting away to another table where an envelope rests. A real, paper envelope that is bent at the corners. Her hand slowly moves to pull out of Irene's grip so that she can massage a temple. "I'll tell you more about it… but it's something that I'd rather tell you and Caruthers at the same time."
"I filed plenty of things digitally." Irene sighs in that mildly exasperated way that Vega is so familiar with because she provokes the reaction a lot of the time. She holds onto Vega's hand, holds onto her attention, bot a longer moment than expected, but she lets go finally when Vega tries to pull out of her grasp. The point was made. "Well, I am not comforted by that answer," she remarks, gaze lingering on the envelope on a table. Despite this, she doesn't follow up with more questions, just frowns into the distance.
There is just a hint of amusement at her continuing success at provoking a reaction from Irene on this subject. It's familiar. It's comforting. Unlike the subject that she is avoiding, biting the edge of her lip as she flashes her friend a wan smile. The point was made. "It's… a bit complicated. Let's eat? And you can walk me through some of you ideas," Vega suggests with more enthusiasm, finding them both chairs and dragging them over to the table.
"Hm." Irene makes a low noise of discomfort in response to that non-answer, looking at the letter again but not saying anything else. She fixes Vega with a firm look, a 'we /will/ talk about this later' sort of look, before helping drag a chair over to the table. "Ideas seems a bit strong...," she claims, unpacking the carry-out bag. It's not strong. She has thoughts. They've been color coded and handed to Vega already, after all. But while they eat, she bats ideas back and forth with Vega, only a little distracted by her friend's mysterious complications. "Anyway...selling a system is the easiest thing. You've already gotten a bit of a head start of that, it sounds like."
Irene only receives a bland look in response. Vega is quick to focus on their food and the subject of their new business venture. She adds her own ideas to Irene's, which she promises to read through more thoroughly later as their color-coded formidableness requires. One of the things batted is a name - which she doesn't have any particular thoughts on. Polishing off another bite of her vegetarian burrito, she nods. "I've done a bit of a test run with Open Hands. Their system isn't as intense as what I have installed here," she answers, waving a hand at the nearly invisible but more complicated security of the workshop.
They are going to have a struggle with the name. There is a space of silence somewhere in the conversation as they both fail to have a lot of significant thoughts on it. And then Irene makes a joke about letting Idris name it instead. Which would get them a more unique name than she could come up with, certainly, but also probably /too/ unique. Thankfully, not a thing they need to decide now. "Vega," Irene begins, finishing chewing on a salsa-laden chip before she continues, "There are security businesses that don't have anything as intense as you have installed here." Probably true, although mostly an exaggeration. "You're still running it though. If you get alerts and show up in the middle of the night..."
Idris's name selection may involve rockets or aliens or fish. It would depend on the day and definitely be too unique. "They need to step up then," Vega quips before taking another bite of her burrito. There are arguably smaller governments that aren't as secure as some of the technology on her warehouse. "Yeah. I mean… I set it up so that there would be a tree of people who get an immediate notification rather than just pushing a 911 call to the Police. Especially considering the needs of the kids there." Reaching for a napkin, she wipes a little sauce off of her fingers. "Theirs is pretty simple. The camera out front monitors the activity, day and night, and if there is an attempted break in or something happens it sends an alarm through the system."
There are arguably smaller governments that don't /need/ to be as secure as some of the technology on her warehouse. "My point is that you're on the tree," Irene says, punctuating the words with another crunch of chip. "Although I guess you said you were doing things down there. ...teaching." Forgive her if she sounds a little dubious. "Aren't there some motion detectors on the property too, or are those not wired into the same system?" It's been awhile since she was last trying to break into the place. "And sensors on the windows? You did say one got broken."
"I /should/ wire the backyard motion detectors into the system. I hadn't really done anything that extensive for them. It was beyond their needs at the time." Frowning, Vega swipes one of the chips and dunks it in guac. "Currently, I think the ones in the back just trigger lights and sound if the kids try to sneak out." Crunching down on the chip, she chews thoughtfully for a minute, mind off in its own world. "I've got a sensor on the front window. I'll probably have to reset that, yeah. I'm on the tree because I build the device… and was not inspired by the level of tech capability show." Shaking her head, she eats another chip. "I /am/ teaching. Whether or not they're learning…" Her voice lowers as she grumbles.
"It may still be beyond their needs," Irene points out, gesturing with a chip. "They're just there to prevent kids sneaking around." She pauses a moment to chew, then adds, "Although maybe they could use a reinforced window..." Or a few. She snorts, stretching her legs out a moment and leaning back slightly. "You'll have to decide what you want to do with it." Now that a Vega-installed security system is not just going to be a one-off. She taps the toe of her boot against the ground. "I'm not sure it's really teaching if no one is learning..." She's just saying. "I guess you are around there a lot, though?"
"It might. I'd hate for the kids to feel like they're caught up in a prison," Vega acknowledges with a tip of her head and a slight grin. She was a teenager once too. Sneaking out is sometimes part of the deal. Tipping back in her chair, she stares up at the ceiling lost in her own thoughts for a moment, likely pondering the qualities of a reinforced window. Irene's next comment draws her attention, dropping back to the ground with a blink. "Right. That may be something we want to work out together. Common areas of security hit… Also I am going to have to look into standardization to some extent." And not her usual winging it. Grabbing an unopened sauce packet, she tosses it at Irene with a roll of her eyes. "I am sure /some/ of them are learning. It's just some of them are teenage girls." Grabbing a chip, she tips it back and forth. "A few times a week."
Irene would never sneak out. She was born old and not fun. "I will scrap the plans for twenty foot walls with barbed and an armed watchtower, then," she replies mildly. It is a joke. Those were never plans. "Mhm. I'll have to look into it a little bit...And yes, you will. I'm afraid you can't keep doing something new every time," she says with a smile that is one part teasing and one part sympathy. At least until a sauce packet is tossed at her. "Ow," she deadpans, letting it hit her and fall to the floor. Where she is unable to leave it, so she picks up it and drops it back in the bag. "You were a teenage girl not long ago, you should be fine." Not helping. "Mhm. Have you seen much of Christian? Aside from questionable photos forwarded to me."
That is a lie. "You better. Getting permits on that watchtower would be hell in this city," Vega points out dryly. So much paperwork, Irene. She sighs dramatically, mouth ticking up at the corner, at the thought of having to /standardize/ her build processes. It doesn't bother her that much. "I would throw another sauce packet at you for that, but I seem to have wounded you." Wrinkling her nose at Irene, she takes a pointed bite of her chip. The question of Christian causes her to shake her head. "Not much. I've seen him around but haven't really spoken to him much. I am still 'the cop' to at least half the kids, though. Other than the little bit of teaching I've done, I'm mostly fixing stuff up when I'm there."
"Getting permits for anything in that part of town would be hell," Irene says, not sounding enthusiastic about all the paperwork. "Terribly," she agrees, pressing a hand to her sauce packet 'wound'. So painful. "Hm," she murmurs thoughtfully tapping her toe against the ground a couple of times, but not enlightening Vega to her thoughts. "Alright."
Vega visibly shudders at the thought. "Urgh. Yeah." Chuckling at Irene, she leans her face into a hand and watches her friend with a crooked smile. "Sauce packets. Your Achilles Heel." To leave such a terrible wound. That expression softens with concern after a moment. "You worried about him? I can check in on him."
"The world can sleep soundly, knowing my kryptonite has been found at last," Irene retorts dryly, leaning back in her seat a moment. "Hm, I imagine just about everyone who knows about him is worried to some degree, greater or lesser." Which doesn't answer the question. "I was just trying to get an idea of where his head may be at...I saw him a few days ago."
"Never thought it would be small packets of spices, but…" Trailing off, Vega shrugs amiably and munches on another few chips as Irene speaks. Her foot bounces as she does, channeling her customary energy. "In a different realm from the boy that we knew, likely. He came back nearly a man with years of experience under his belt. I felt… ill fitting after space. I can't imagine what his reintegration must be like."
"Surprise," Irene deadpans with a palms-up shrug and sly smile. Compared to Vega's energetic bouncing, her tapping her toe a couple of times hardly looks like movement. "Ill fitting?" She wonders with a tilt of her head. "It's...not going well, is my impression."
Answering that sly smile with a broad grin, Vega flicks one of the remaining packets along the surface of the table. "Yeah… There's something mentally disassociating to go through something like that and then return to normalcy. I'm sure a lot of people experienced something similar. God knows it's the reason a lot of cops drink, if you compare what we saw on the job to just how life… goes every day. It changes your perspective irrevocably." She winces in sympathy for Christian. "That's too bad."
Irene watches the packet skitter across the table without much concern. "That's not the only reason cops drink." She waves a hand vaguely. "I know all that. You just made it sound more...specific...than just...reintegrating into society after prolonged time in a high-stress environment." Not that that isn't enough to make someone feel 'ill fitting'. "I'm sorry." After their return, she's been a bit distant. "He'll...be okay. I guess." She looks away, staring into the distance with pursed lips as she chews on some thought.
"Most of them barely need a reason after a few years on the job," Vega quips, threading a damp lock of hair back behind her ear. Watching Irene with her dark gaze, her mouth hooks upward a little at the corner. "Well, it was an adjustment to no longer have machines bending to my will," she says softly - still keeping it light. There were more than a few adjustments to be made. She waits a moment to see if Irene will share the thought she's chewing on, brows lifting slightly.
"Everyone...copes their own way," Irene murmurs as she watches Vega back. It is too simple a statement about a far more complex reality. "Oh, they still bend your will...it just takes a little longer," she points out, one corner of her mouth quirking as she looks around the workshop and all it's gadgetry. As is so typical and familiar with her, she doesn't shares what's on her mind when she falls into that silence.
"Mhm…" Vega answers in soft agreement, a brief edge of concern touching her features. It is far too simple a statement. She snorts at the supposition that machines bend to her will still. "That, my friend, is primarily because I am their creator. It's easy to make them bend to your will when you're the one building them." Leaning back in her chair, she is at ease with Irene's silence. This is not something that she needs to pry free of her. At least, not now.
"Too bad the same can't be said for children," Irene snorts quietly. Then she lifts her brows at Vega. "I have yet to see you run into a machine you couldn't use, fix or just build yourself." She's just saying. She did build a portal to cross dimensions, after all. Brain-stuff, aside. Her silent thought is only broken by her rooting around in the last shards of the chips. There isn't a lot left.
"It's not as okay to hit them with hammers." Vega manages with a straight face, the slightest edge to her mouth. Shrugging in a way that approaches humility, she strums the tips of her fingers against her table. "So what were you up town for?"
Irene reaches out with a foot and kicks Vega's chair just hard enough to make it wobble, but not nearly enough to make it fall over. "No," she says, exasperation all for show. "Hm? Oh, just work."
It helps that Vega isn't as tipped back as she could be although she grounds herself with a quick press of her foot against the ground. Rolling her eyes at Irene, she says dryly, "I was kidding." Duh. "Nice."
"I know," Irene says, reaching out to nudge Vega's chair again, though this time it doesn't rock at all, she just feels the vibration of the kick. Duh. "Mhm. Work." Her lips curve in a slight smile. "Checking in on you."
Shifting her leg, Vega blocks a little of Irene's kick with a grin. She feels the vibration against the flex of metal. "I'm work?" She counters teasingly. I appreciate it. I'm fine, she means.
"/Shit/, you are work," Irene groans slowly, looking up at the ceiling. It's not a real complaint, though. When she looks back at Vega it's with an amused smile. You're welcome.
"Shut up." Laughing Vega, hooks her foot under Irene's and nudges the other woman. Punk. That smile is flashed back and returned.
Punk? Her? Never. "Such trials I endure..." Irene is nudged. Barely. "You know I'll win this, right?" She points out, smile widening as she leans forward a bit.
Definitely. "There isn't a princess or anything at the end of this trial," Vega points out dryly, poking Irene with her boot beneath the table. Her dark eyes sparkle as Irene leans forward, relaxing back in her seat. "In your dreams."
"I wouldn't know what to do with one anyway," Irene replies with a slight shrug. This time she doesn't poke at Vega or kick her chair. Instead, she reaches out with one leg, putting her foot under the seat of Vega's chair, and lifts her and chair off the ground completely. "I'm more of a doer than a dreamer."
"Steal her crown? You'd look /ever/ so pretty and delicate…" Vega teases Irene with a lift of her brows. Her words are broken off by a laugh as she is bodily lifted off of the ground in her chair by her friend's leg. Shifting her position, she lightly kicks off the chair to float above it and leaving the chair balanced on Irene's foot. "Well, if you will change the rules."
"I'm not sure I've /ever/ looked delicate," Irene replies with a short laugh, sounding entirely uninterested in crowns and all that comes with them. "Maybe you just didn't know what all the rules were," she posits, setting the now empty chair back down on the ground and looking serenely up at the floating Vega.
Chuckling softly, Vega shakes her head at Irene. "I think you've probably /looked/ it. You're just stronger than you look." A lot stronger than she looks. Not unlike how Vega is more than she seemed, now floating above the ground. "Mhmm…" Pivoting on a foot in the air, she kicks back so that she flips forward over Irene to land gently behind her. And giving a lock of hair a light tug. "Maybe."
"You have no evidence of that," Irene claims upwards at Vega floating there. She follows the movement of that flip with her eyes and then twists her head around to look over her shoulder. "Well, at least I didn't have to pull you back out of the air too," she remarks with a slight smile, turning a little more around.
Dark brows lift slowly beneath the still damp pink fringe of her bangs, dark eyes fixing on Irene from above like a dubious pink hawk. "Uh-huh. I've seen it." It wasn't under good circumstances of course. No one fares well with a shotgun to the face. "Was that the plan?" Vega wonders, touching down lightly with a grin.
Irene fared pretty well considering it was a shotgun blast to her face. At the moment, though, she merely lifts her brows at Vega in disbelief. "Only if I had to. You always get so put out when I do that." It's happened a few times.Scoffing, Vega rolls her eyes at Irene and gestures with a flick of her fingers. "You want to see what I'm working on?" Since she made all the trouble of coming down here. The explanation will probably involve a lot of science that Irene will only understand a portion of - or it will be something ridiculous.