(2018-03-08) A Walk in the Park
A Walk in the Park
Summary: A friendly chat, a stroll, a chance to be mean to ducks.
Date: 2018-03-08
Related: None
Player Characters: Audgrim, Bea, Eddie

----——| Grimhart Park - Cherry Oak

The southern and front-most acre holds artificial brooks and ponds, numerous bridges and islands filled with willows and rhododendrons grown to rainforest size. Many local waterfowl make their homes here. Most of the waters are without name, but a few stand out with little placques or signs.

Hartbreak Lake is the largest in sheer quantity, but its narrow kidney shape and numerous islets fools the eye. Hartbreak Bridge crosses it in lacy ribbons of white-washed wood, covered by a trellis hidden by masses of roses and honeysuckle.

The second largest lake is Cinder Pond, named so due to the grey slate that makes its bed. Here is the largest island with the cafe and restaurant, easily reached by the Three Sisters bridges of uniform width and sturdy oak structure. They are open to the elements, their bowed backs covered by coarse, nailed-in mats for easier navigation in wet weather. The island itself is one of native wildflowers and wind-whipped native Garry oaks sheltering sturdy picnic tables.

Even Eddie needs some fresh air every once in a while, to clear his head, and in this case waft away the tequila fumes still sticking to him from last night. The air's not to fresh these days anywhere you go, but it's better here than in his office, so here he is in the late morning strolling along the side of the artificial streams and trying to forget that ducks are birds too. He's looking up, mostly, not paying much attention to his surroundings, and there's something wrong with his face. He's smiling, all alone, for nobody else's benefit. There's not even anything smug about it. Every once in a while he seems to notice it himself, and he tries to get rid of it, but it keeps coming back.

After a while he starts making a noise. Humming to himself. Maybe he's sick.

And then there's Bea, who is up in a tree and happy to be there, with a box in hand, sawing at a branch while a million buzzing bees fly around. Apparently there's an early spring swarm, and she's on a mission to give them a proper box to live in. Glancing down below, she spots Eddie and yells out, "Eddie! Eddie Brundle! Is everything okay?" Surely something must be wrong- a dead body, a kidnapped person, a stolen item, /something/ that would lure Eddie out to this natural habitat.

Audgrim is not usually inside if he can help it, but he does have to be in town to make a living. He's taken a break and snuck into the park, having hidden his clothes and his violin under some bushes. Why? Because he's IN the pond, beneath the surface. He's been down there for about twenty five minutes and is peeping up at people from the murky waters. Seeing that familiar figure of Eddie strolling by, his eyes widen and he cuts his underwater hanging around a bit short - almost time to go up anyway, he can't stay there forever even if he wanted to. And hearing that familiar voice, although muffled by the water, that does the trick. With a few fast swims he shoots up out of the water with a devilish grin. "EDDIE! BEA!"

It takes a moment for Eddie to hear someone calling his name, and he's missed the the buzzing of the bees and the sound of the saw completely. When he does hear it he furrows his brow and looks around and stashes the smile under a rock somewhere, in case anybody's watching. "Oh," he says, kind of lamely, "Bea. Hi. Everything's fine, I— Jesus Christ!" He jumps back, startled as Audgrim does his Shamu routine out of the water, nearly falling on his ass until his wings give him a little boost.

Bea gives a squeal of startled delight at Audgrim's arrival, nearly dropping the now bee-filled box. Steading herself carefully, she checks to make sure that the majority of the insects are inside, then clambers down the tree, setting the box down at the base of the trunk and turning toward the two men, surrounded by a halo of her namesake insects. "He wasn't walking /on/ water, Eddie, so I am pretty sure he isn't Jesus, but just like going for a swim." Helpful Bea is helpful.

Audgrim swims to the edge of the pond and some rocks there, before climbing up easily. Butt naked, because eww, wet clothes. He's as unembarassed as a beast would be, as he gathers up his belongings from under that bush, grinning widely at the two with water dripping. "You should go for swim too, is nice." That pond is murky and probably not good for your health. Audgrim holds up a few old coins, triumphantly. "It got treasure in there too. I also find bicycle and old washing machine." He puts some underwear on. His upper body is riddled with old and new scars, but that's not unusual for a Lost. "What you two doing?"

"Trying not to shoot you," Eddie answers, scowling and pulling his hand out from under his coat, empty. He looks around nervously for witnesses, and relaxes a little when he doesn't find any. Not too much, though. That's a lot of bees, and he doesn't speak their language. "Watch where you do that kind of thing. American ignorance'll only take you so far, 'he's Norwegian' doesn't explain much about breathing under water."

Bea says helpfully, "/I/ have heard that Norwayians are, like, one of those cultures that learns to hold their breath forever, just as a practice." A beat and she adds, elaborating on the lie, told with red cheeks and a twinkle in her eye that gives her away almost as clearly as the giggle that's burbling up behind her words, "For the whale hunting, you know." She seems interested in the 'treasures' below the water, eyeing the lake speculatively before answering Audgrim. "I am just collecting this swarm, since some people were freaking out a little, even though they weren't bothering anyone. But still, they'll be happier up in Forks, we all agreed on that."

Putting on the rest of his clothes swiftly, after swiping some of the water off with a handkerchief, Audgrim grins continuously at the two. "Its alright," he explains, "cause I only come up of water if nobody is there and go in if nobody is there." She offers Bea the coins if she wants them - some of them are quite old and foreign. About the whale hunting, he looks mostly confused. "They do?" He gestures at Eddie and asks, hopefully. "I want to shoot gun sometime, can you show me?"

Eddie listens to Bea's lie like a teacher assessing a student, or at least he tries to. He can't keep a straight face, snorting a laugh and gesturing over to Audgrim as the other Beast gets dressed. "Sure they do, and they're all terrific nudists, on account of all the hotsprings. He eyeballs the coins as they change hands, a little curious, himself. "I can show you. Just don't spook me like that, or I might show you a little closer than you'd like."

Bea takes the coins with a smile, examining them with a discerning eye and noting, "When just we find the hob town again, then I bet we could get something fun for these." The talk of guns gets a little wrinkle of Bea's note and a shake of her head, "I don't think that guns are the best thing to have just all around, since it makes people a little…reckless, sometimes, if you ask me."

"I be shot before," Audgrim remembers, looking a bit dazed - he touches a few round scars, three in total, on his upper body, before hiding the scars under the shirt as he buttons it up. "On ship. But, different guns there." He nods at Eddie, and manages to show the perfect level of respect when talking about firearms, not treating them like a toy. "Bees. Bees are better than guns," he notes, and leans in to look at the box of bees, not too worried about getting stung.

Eddie doesn't disagree, exactly, but hearing that from Bea gets another laugh. He's doing that a lot, today. "That's why I never wear more than two at one time," he grins at his fellow bug, "and just the one, on Sundays." He looks down and spots something moving on his lapel. Oh, hello, bee. He watches it nervously for a moment, then slowly places a finger in its path, letting it climb aboard. "Go on," he says, holding the finger out in front of his face, "we're hardly even related." He blows his finger and sends the bee buzzing off to join all the thousand others, buzzing around with someone who knows what to do with them. "Bees are great," he admits, "but guns are easier to carry in polite company. They don't scare people as much."

Bea considers the bees settling down in the box, the swarm largely having made its way to join the queen in the box. "Oh, for sure bees can scare people, but still, unless you are allergic, you aren't going to get killed by a jumpy bee." She eyes Eddie, as if trying to figure out where the second gun may be. "But still I /guess/ if you are for sure going to have a gun, it is better to know how to use it good."

Picking up the violin case, Audgrim slings it on his back, not about to start up a concert at the moment. He watches with fascination as Eddie talks to the bee; he lacks that particular communication skills, at least so far. "Would not want to have thousand bees attacking me," he agrees, grinning. "Rather take gun shot." He considers something. "Axe, claw, gun - we would do alright in fight."

"I hardly ever kill anybody," Eddie promises Bea, clutching one hand over his heart. He shoos a lingering stray bee off his arm, probably drawn there by the fresh orange stain of something syrupy on his coat sleeve. "I'll leave the fighting to you. It doesn't suit my gentle disposition. Bea's half a Summer anyway, from what Penny told me the other night, so I'm sure she can pick up my slack."

Bea grins at Audgrim, nodding her agreement enthusiastically. "Oh, for sure we would kick all the butts." Eddie's comment about killing people gets an eye roll from Bea, so exaggerated even a teenager would tell her to tone it down a little. "Oh Eddie, it is not about killing people, and even I have done that enough, but just the easiness of it, since you said yourself you just might have shot Audgrim, just because of a little joke to sneak up on you, but if you were using an axe, or claws, then just you would have had to think a little bit about it, and at worst maybe would have chopped his leg off." The mention of Penny and 'the other night' gets a laugh and a roll of her eyes, "Oh, what did Penny say about that other night? Since for me, it was for sure a Spring night, and just making sure /everyone/ wanted Frugals."

"I don't kick butts much, I usually claw them in the face," Audgrim notes - sometimes euphemisms or sayings fly right over his head. But he still gives Bea and Eddie a big thumbs up with a beastly grin. Tail swishing, he begins to pace around a bit around the other two, lazy and restless at the same time. "What did Penny and you do?" he asks curiously. "Did you fight at Frugals?"

"Just that you nearly started a riot, is all," Eddie says, giving Bea a skeptical look. Does she really believe that? He shakes his head and laughs, again. "I guess you can be hungry and angry at the same time. I hear they've even got a stupid word for it, these days. I was a little sore with you, for a minute," he tries to look stern, but it doesn't take, "but the place was still standing when I went by for breakfast, so I guess there's no harm done."

Bea shakes her head to Audgrim, "Oh, for sure Penny and I didn't fight, but only just got our food, like anybody does. But just everyone was /so/ touchy there that day, and I think only because, like Eddie just said, they were super hangry. But even I tried to give people some candy, and that didn't make them happy. And just it all went sideways, which is what Mercedes says when something goes off, and anyway, everyone went sideways, just because I got the last wings, when only I wanted to try to make the birds mad, and so it was for a good cause, at least." Eddie gets a laugh and a grin, "I am glad too, that it is still standing, and see that just proves it, it wasn't to make people angry, or they /definitely/ would have burned it down, if that is what I was trying for, but just I wanted to remind people how /good/ it is."

Audgrim listens to this story with some bewilderment. But, in the end he nods sagely. "I be angry too if someone took the last food and I get nothing," he notes, "but I would go find food somewhere else." He yawns, unsurprisingly. "Will go take a nap now, nice to meet you. Talk more soon."

Penny never mentioned that part about making the birds mad, and Eddie seems genuinely tickled to hear it. "It's times like this I remember why I like you so much," he says, smiling that actual smile he had on earlier. Like he ever actually forgets. He looks over at the water and stoops down low to pick up a rock, and chucks it off in the direction of some ducks. They're far enough off that he's never going to hit them, but it makes him feel better. He gives Audgrim a wave good-bye, and a little bit of advice on to see him on his way: "Keep your clothes on."

Bea waves Audgrim off, then turns to handle her new bee 'friends', carefully putting a lid on the box as she talks. Giving Eddie a laugh and a grin, she shrugs and says, "If just it makes us better friends, Eddie, then wfor sure it was worth it. And plus, I got to hang out with Penny, which is nice, and something I haven't done since we all started waking up from our trap." She considers, then asks, "But just what have you been up to, that has you in such a good mood? Did you get some sex or something?"

"No!" Eddie says, with the immediate defensive embarrassment of somebody's little brother. Maybe he was one, once. "I don't know what you're talking about. I don't have moods. Not good ones, definitely." He rubs the back of his neck and looks away, glaring at the ducks. Like it's their fault, somehow. He looks around for another good rock, but after a second he gives up and sighs and admits defeat. "Ida's back in town."

Bea blinks, "Ida? Like…Oh! I remember Ida, and she is a bug too, like us, only like a spider or something, right? Or maybe just…" She frowns, trying to remember, then shakes her head and gives up, just saying, "For sure I remember her though, and boy is it nice to have her back, and awake, and just if it makes you happy, Eddie, then even more than usual, that is the best thing!" So overcome with happiness is Bea that she launches herself at Eddie for a celebratory hug. She can't help but add, a light bit of teasing in her tone, "And just, I wouldn't judge if you had sex with her, since if I remember right, she is just like real pretty, and probably smells nice." Yeah, Bea definitely thinks Eddie and Ida are bunking up together.

Eddie squirms a little more than usual in the hug, still flustered. He does his best to recover his dignity before he speaks, but it's a slippery thing and he's only partly successful. "A wasp, actually," he says. "Ampulex compressa." He's just guessing at the pronunciation. He second guesses himself for knowing that, then pivots to the attack. "Like you'd judge anyone sleeping with anything. You're not allowed, it's against the hippy ethos, 'Free Love' and everything. Revolting." He starts straightening up his coat, purely as a nervous gesture. He still looks like an unmade bed. "But she does smell nice."

Bea considers that, pausing to reconsider her unconditional support of Ida, "Oh. Well…Even a wasp girl is okay, I guess, so long as she doesn't break into any hives. And just at least she isn't a fox, because for sure they are trouble." Wasps, second in suspiciousness only to foxes, it seems. Bea can't help but laugh at Eddie's defensiveness, seeming to enjoy the rare moment of catching him off guard. "Oh, well definitely, I don't care who you have sex with Eddie, but just it is a thing like people say, just to be nice and everything."

"I'll pass that along," Eddie says, amused at Bea's turnaround. "I'll take a wasp over a spider any day of the week, but maybe I'm biased. Which way's your truck?" He nods down at the box of bees, apparently planning to keep Bea company during transport, at far as the parking lot, anyway. "Anyway, we're not. It's, it's complicated. She says she doesn't remember leaving town, but that was nearly a year before we set the trap. I'm not sure what to believe."

Bea carefully picks up the box and heads toward the parking lot, motioning with her head in the direction. "This way. Just don't make any too sudden moves or anything." She considers, then shrugs and says, "Well, it seems like maybe that is part of the trap? And maybe…maybe we just made it like a venus fly kind of trap, with some sweet scent in it, to get all the best people for the job to come around, even if they weren't here when we went to sleep."

Eddie keeps a respectful distance from the bees, taking it slow and lagging behind a little before he matches pace with Bea. "It could be," he says, skeptical. "There's definitely a lure. People showing up, who left a long time ago. New people, who weren't ever here to begin with. But as near as I can tell, the memory thing happened at the same time, for everybody it happened to." He grumbles a thinking grumble, somewhere back there. "I guess it could be something else. Maybe she got hit on the head with a coconut. Weirder things have happened." He can't sell that, not even to himself.

Bea makes a face at that, "Maybe some coconuts, like you say, but probably not I would guess." She considers, motioning toward the ice cream van and leaning out her hip. "Can you grab my keys and get the door open?" She considers and makes a face, "But still, it is a weird thing, like you say."

Eddie takes the keys, making a little game of lifting them quickly and lightly enough not to be noticed, just for practice. He does a pretty good job of it, jangling them proudly only once he's at the door to the van. He gets it unlocked and opened, then backs off to give Bea and her hive plenty of clearance. "Yeah. One more weird thing for the pile, I guess. Not the worst one we're dealing with." Not for anybody else, anyway.

Bea carefully slides the hive into place, securing it with straps and blocks of wood before shutting the doors again and holding her hand out for her keys. "That is true, for sure, and just I am going hunting for some of those rings, like Penny found." Bea puts on her determined face. "But if I find one, then you would be the first one I tell."

Eddie watches Bea secure the hive, curious at the process. He drops the keys into her hand when she's finished. "Good luck with that. So far these things've been finding us, mostly. It'd be a gas to do it the other way around, just for variety. If I happen to find another one in my soup, you can have it. I've got enough jewelry, for now."

Bea beams at Eddie and nods, "Okay then, it is a deal. And just if you want to come hunting with me, then you are welcome, too, since always I am happy for your company." She leans in to give Eddie a quick hug, then heads around the van, saying, "I should get these girls up to Forks just before they start getting annoyed at the dark or something. It was good to see you, Eddie, and tell Ida I say hi, if you see her again."

"Just let me know when you start hunting, I'll make the time," Eddie says, returning the hug with no squirming, this time. "Try not to hit any potholes. 'Bye, Bea," he waves, then waves again, this time at the back of the van, "ladies."

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