(2018-03-24) The Beginning Of A Beautiful Friendship
The Beginning Of A Beautiful Friendship
Summary: Eddie, Audgrim and Sue meet at Dockrats. New friendships begin.
Date: IC Date (2018-03-24)
Related: None
Player Characters: Audgrim, Eddie, Sue

Main Room - Dockrats Pool Hall and Bar - Harbourfront
The lighting in this seedy dive is low, the drinks are cheap and watered down, and the customers are the sort who don't have much to say unless money is exchanging hands. It's a rough crowd and it shows in the wear and tear on the pool tables, bar, rickety booths, and stools. Some of the walls even have suspiciously head-sized dents in them.

A heavily stained gray carpet helps mask some of the stains, or at least keeps them from being easily identified. The walls are painted a dark mustard color, except for the white splotches of joint compound spread here and there to patch up the dents and holes of prior fights. The felt of the tables is a uniform faded green and the racks of cues look like they've seen better days.

A few dart boards, of the manual, not electric, kind, are settled in one corner and the long bar occupies one wall of the floor with its array of cheap beverages in questionably clean glasses.


Eddie Brundle is a good detective, or at least people keep saying so, but more and more these days he finds himself wrapped up in mysteries he can't crack. The Everbright case. This thing with the crowns. What to do about all the new cops in his life. Usually he handles these things by redoubling his efforts, hitting the streets and asking questions and turning over stones and not sleeping enough, and sometimes it even works. But now there's a whole new mystery in his life, six feet of it and more with her hair done up, and he's stumped. Nothing for it but to look for clues, and where better than at Dockrats, at the bottom of a bottle?

It's the middle of the day, and the place is pretty well empty except for the usual collection of dead-enders who spend more time in here than the furniture. Eddie seems to fit right in, slumped against the bar in the classic Thinker's pose, chin against knuckles. From the assortment of empty beer bottles in front of him he's been at it since this morning, though it doesn't really show. Even if they didn't water down the drinks, it takes a lot to touch him.

Audgrim isn't too worried about chasing down mysteries and figuring it out, but there are times when the Nightsinger feels like there's just too much going on and he needs to drink to make life seem a bit more simple. So, out of pure coincidence he's making his way to Dockrats, the only bar he's ever frequented before - he's already rather sloshed in fact. Not about to topple over, but definitely moving a bit less focused.

He manages to somehow lazily drape himself over a bar stool next to Eddie, orders a whole bottle of whiskey and pays for it with some crumpled bills he's earned from busking, just grunting something unintelligeble at Eddie.

Sue doesn't exactly fit in here, and she hadn't even planned to come to the bar today, but she happened to see Eddie leaving the building as she was trying to settle down to watch TV. Not that she was waiting for him to leave so she could go snooping through his stuff again, or anything; she pretty much does that whenever she wants to anyway. But she's curious and bored and followed him here… then promptly got distracted by something else, then remembered she was following Eddie and came in. She gives one of the regulars the eye and raises two fingers to her face and then points them at him, scowling and trying to look though although her ears are perked up and her tail swishes happily.

She sits down next to Eddie on the other side of him and says. "I'll have what he's having." She beams and looks over at Eddie, "I've always wanted to say that. What ARE you having? Oooh! What's HE having?" Sue asks as she looks past Eddie towards Audgrim. "Maybe I'll have what he's having!"

Eddie slowly turns his head, first to one side and then the other, just long enough to notice who's sat down next to him. He grunts what might be a greeting. Nobody really comes here for the company, but he doesn't seem to mind a neighborly presence. They're less likely to put a knife in him than anybody else in here, statistically speaking. "I'm having water," he rasps a reply to the raccoon, "with beer in it, just for sanitary purposes. I guess our neighbor had a better time busking than I have of detecting, since he ordered the good stuff. Have you met?" He looks from one to the other, again. "You ought to get along. You can commiserate over your difficulties finding pants."

His hand that isn't holding his chin is holding something else, a little pewter pin in the shape of a magnifying glass, with a real glass lens and everything. He rolls it around between his thumb and his forefinger, just looking at it.

Audgrim does not at first notice the newcomer, focused on pouring his whiskey in an almost clean glass. Not that he minds, he eats rotten food out of dumpsters so a not entirely clean glass in a bar is nothing. But then out of the corner of his eyes, there's a tail. And he trails that tail to the rest of Sue and he just stares at her from around Eddie, leaning forward to get a better look.

Wordlessly he pushes his glass filled with whiskey at Eddie and gets two new ones for him and Sue, pouring up generous amounts. He pushes one over to Sue, too. "Hi. I'm Audgrim," he introduces himself, offering a toothy, charming grin. "I don't like pants, much."

"Right?" Sue nods knowingly. "I'm lucky I'm so hot and really low riding pants are in style or I'd be in some serious trouble!" She explains hopping off the stool next to Eddie and moving around to Audgrim's side, turning around to show off her tail witting comfortably over the waist of her jeans. "I'm not one for skirts. I mean I wear the sometimes but with dresses I have to put my tail down almost between my legs, and then i walk around looking like I have to pee." She turns around still grinning and offering her hand. "I much prefer going pantless. But now that spring is here I can spend more time running around in the woods without pants!" She proclaims, her mantle flaring out unconsciously around her for the moment smelling of petrichor and lilacs.
"Oh I'm Sue!" She adds, remembering.

Audgrim swivels a bit on his chair so he can turn to Sue, watching her with that lazy intensity. "I like running in the woods without pants," he says, his own tail making figure-eights in appreciation. He gulps down half of his glass of whiskey in one go. Poor Eddie will just have to suffer through dealing with two tail-swishing, clothing optional beasts tonight, it seems.

Audgrim's mantle smells of wet autumn leaves, although quite faint. His shadow is giving Sue a thumbs up and a broad creepy grin. "I like swimming in river. Do you?"

This is the most conversation that's happened in here all day, even just accounting for Sue, and Eddie looks around to make sure they haven't disturbed the natives. They're all pretty well still gathering dust, insensate, so he relaxes. When the raccoon girl trades seats his stops twirling his pin around, holding it up to one eye to peer through the little lens, then affixing it to his lapel. There's a little black bloodstain right beneath it, but he figures that makes it seem more authentic. He accepts the whiskey with a nod of thanks, tossing it back like it was water. "Louis," he murmurs, more to himself than to anyone else, "I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship."

Sue reaches between the two other Lost, stretching a bit because even in boots that add a couple of inches, she's a short little thing, grabs a straw and sets it in her glass, ears flattening just a little bit. "I like to float in the water on a nice sunny day." She admits, sipping her whiskey through the straw. After a cough and making a face she continues on. "But I'm not much for swimming. That's way too much work and exercise then I like. And they like have tubes they take from old cars so you can just lay there. It's awesome! I bet it's pretty expensive though having to replace them all the time. But there were so many cars already at the river when I tired it, I'm sure it was fine." She tells them sunnily.

Audgrim came here because he felt a bit like the world is a dreary place, but now he's not so sure any longer. Sue's enthusiasm is rubbing off on his one side, Eddie's on the other. He's caught between Winter and Spring, quite literally. He drinks more, finishing his glass, then pours up more for all three if they want.

"I like to be under water," he explains simply to Sue. He slides off his chair and offers it to the raccoon girl, nudging closer to Eddie in doing so. A little huddle of Lost, at a bar, getting drunk. What could go wrong? "So many things at bottom of river. I find many bicycles. I find a refrigerator too, but it was chained, could not open it. Maybe it has dead body in it."

"I didn't learn to swim 'til fourth grade," Eddie volunteers with a wistful little smile, remembering, "when we visited the beach, and Billy Boyd and his friends tossed me into the Pacific, back when there was more water in it than there was plastic. He was five feet ten," he raises one hand above the ground palm down, to demonstrate, "but I guess that's the advantage of being let back a couple of times." He helps himself to another glass of whiskey, taking it a little slower this time, just sipping. "I don't like swimming very much."

Sue shakes her head at the offer of another drink as she's still determinedly drinking whiskey through a straw and then making a face and sticking her tongue out afterward. "My BFF liked to swim. She was pretty fierce. She would do just about anything; swim, climb a mountain, punch someone in the face, or use her sword. It was huge! Bigger than me!" She tells the other two Lost as she settles in on the stool, swiveling it a bit to look at Eddie and pinning Audgrim between them a bit more. "I tried to lift it once, but I'm more helpful in a fight than doing the fighting." she explains. "Lots of bikes end up in the river, huh? Really? Do people just drive into the river and swim out? I don't think that's how triathalons are supposed to work. Wouldn't know though, too work!" She makes a face again, this time without taking a sip.

Audgrim is feeling dizzy, and oddly content with life. "You like flying," he comforts Eddie, as if not enjoying water is something to be pitied. And that it's alright to him, anyway. He turns an intent squint at Sue, then reaches a hand out to nudge her a little with a claw, not hurting or anything, just lightly poking. "Have to see you are real. Thought maybe you were thing in my head, cause you think like me. Sometimes, I see things - but usually can not touch them so I think you are probably real." He shrugs, and contemplates bicycles in rivers and lakes thoughtfully. "I don't know either. Maybe easier than walking out or jumping. But where do they swim?"

Eddie snorts. "After my last couple times in the air," he says, "I'm thinking of tracking down Billy, so he can pull my wings off. He used to do that, too." He reaches into his coat and comes out with a pack of those nasty Panama cigarettes he likes to smoke, shaking one out for himself and holding the pack out to the left in case anyone else is dumb enough to want one. He makes a match appear in his other hand without reaching anywhere at all, a little magic trick he does sometimes, and he strikes it directly against the bar. It's not the worse thing anyone's done to it, not by a long shot. "Who the hell uses a sword, these days? Besides half of us, I guess."

"I'm real!" Sue agrees to Audgrim as she leans in really close to him, blinking her big blues eyes as her tail swishes happily. "Today I'm real anyway. Sometimes I'm not. Like that cat in the box. Does it count as being observed if you are the one doing it?" She asks them both even as she reaches out with her only tiny claw and pokes at Audrgim in the same spot he poked her, her hand flattening and lingering just a moment. "Oh, you know, those Summer sorts, always running around with one sword or another." Sue explains, her tail stopping and her ears flattening again. "It's like I went to sleep and when I woke up she was gone." She explains and takes one from the pack, since Eddie is offering. Instead of bringing it to her lips though, she pockets it.

"I don't have a sword," Audgrim says, but is not unhappy about that. He flexes his hand, displaying his useful claws. He does accept a cigarette and lights it up, leaning in to steal flame from Eddie's match. Every now and then he enjoys a smoke, and now is such a time. As Sue touches him, he offers her one of those grins again, blowing smoke out of his nose to the side. He probably lost some of those crumpled bill to her, but he doesn't realise and wouldn't notice. Or maybe at least some pocket change. "Sue," he says, his voice a bit slurred. "Soon I go out into woods to find Asbjorn raccoon. I owe him food. And maybe look for bugs."
Audgrim adds; "You should come too."

Smokes lit, Eddie shakes out the match and drops it into the ashtray they aren't supposed to have in bars anymore. Technically it's a peanut tray, but there haven't been peanuts in there since the Bush administration. "There's a lot of that going around," he says, when Sue brings up her missing friend, a little chill falling over the bar for a moment. His hand absently rises to fiddle with the pin on his lapel, and then it's springtime again, like it should be. "But you never know who'll show back up." He takes his glass of whiskey and raises it in an impulsive little toast. "To absent friends, wherever the hell they go. May you find your way back home, or some place better."

Sue raises her glass and clinks it against the other two, whether they are ready for it it not. Not hard enough to slosh theirs (although hers is still rather full and comes close), then takes another sip through the straw. "What's an absorn raccoon? I don't really know that kind. I'm not a typical Raccoon though, I don't go rooting around in the trash. I like to keep my fur clean, plus I fell inside a can once and it was undignified and I couldn't get out!" She proclaims. "But if it's in the woods I guess there aren't a lot of trashcns there." She admits, looking over at Eddie. "Hey! You got that from my partment the night you brought over that fidget spinner thing!" She says, getting excited, and then suddenly unhappy. "It stopped spinning and got boring." She says grumpily, then looks up, all wide-eyed. "Ohmigosh! Did the person who gave it to you die? I never would have taken it if I had known that. Okay, yes I would have. But still! I mean I guess it's a Winter thing, but I really think if it makes you that sad you should probably leave it at home and get a fidget spinner."

"Schrodinger's cat," Audgrim suddenly remembers, from somewhere deep inside that brain of his. Something he read on the internet amongst all the cat memes, probably. That's all he says though, finishing his third or so drink of whiskey, reaching for the now empty bottle and eyeing it balefully as if he thinks it emptied itself on its own just to spite him. He digs out some more bills, puts them on the counter and waves over another bottle which promptly appears. Filling up his glass, he nurses it more carefully and raises it in a toast with Eddie.

"Asbjorn. Racoon in woods, help me the other day. No trash." Something about things being taken jogs a memory and it dawns on him, finally, that Sue is that neighbor he's heard mentioned. "Did you take my blue piece of bug glass? It is gone. I left it under bed."

Eddie seems a little surprised at Sue's reaction. He wouldn't have guessed she had that in her. He flashes her a grin and shakes his head and drinks. "No. She's one of the ones that made it back. I was just thinking of some of the ones who didn't." He taps the pin a couple of times, then leaves it alone. "Don't mind me being sad. It's my job. One of them, anyway. And Schrodinger came up with the cat thing as a gag, to make fun of people. It doesn't really work. That cat is an observer." He settles against the bar as Audgrim starts talking about bugs and raccoons and things in the woods, smoking and drinking and saying nothing. Bea told him about all this, of course, but he's decided for his own sanity not to believe any of it.

Sue, satisfied at Eddie's answer grins up at Audgrim. "I guess that answers the question if I'm real or not." She's not exactly putting off answering his question, so much as thinking about a good answer. "Define taking?" She finally asks slowly. "But I mean, if you put it under your bed then it's your own fault. Everyone hides important things under the bed. Like porn. Although you can get that anywhere, really. Speaking of porn, are you going to be offended if I get naked to run in the woods? Some people find it inappropriate." She scowls and her tail flicks annoyed. "But if you are going to get rid of pants, you might as well just get rid of them all. Clothes are so limiting."

"Maybe cat is in the refrigerator at bottom of river," Audgrim contemplates to Eddie, tapping some ash off on the floor. It's not like it'll make things worse. He puffs some more on the cigarette, holding it like a sailor would by protecting it with his palm; he gives Sue a befuddled look. "Why I be mad if you naked?" Then he remembers, and he waves a hand. "I forget. I take clothes off, people get mad. But I don't get mad at others if they take clothes off. In woods, all fine. But here, we have to remember to be people." He glances around, paranoid - his tail stops in the air as he does. "I remember why I am drinking now. Things are bad and I can't fix it. Things are too complicated."

"Christ, how did I end up renting an apartment at a nudist colony?" Eddie asks a plume of smoke. It rolls and swirls and disappears without answering. Just his luck. Despite his theatrical exasperation, he seems to be in a better mood than he was when they came in. Maybe it's the company, or the switch to hard liquor, or just having something to complain about. "Things are always bad," he says to Audgrim, patting the tall man on the back, "and always have been, and there's never any fixing anything. Not really." He says it a lot like the Nightsinger says that things will be okay, consolingly, like it's meant to be a pep talk.

"But we're all still here," he slides down off his stool, and fumbles some bills out of his coat, to pay for what he drank before the whiskey came around, "until we're not. I've got to run. See you around, neighbors."

"Pfft! Don't listen to the Winter." Sue says as she takes another sip through the straw. "They are always so gloomy and depressed. Things are complicated, sure! But then you just have to come up with an idea to change it. Sometimes you can't fix things, it's true." She nods, agreeing as she takes another sip and makes a face. "But you can always change things! You always have a choice. Sometimes you just have to distract yourself and the thing is still there. But even just changing your mood can change how you look at something. Speaking of distractions, have you seen fidget spinners? They are AMAZING!"

Audgrim gives Eddie a wave and perks up a bit. But it's not after he leaves, and after Sue's peptalk that he says his customary: "Everything will be alright." He shifts so he can fully face the raccoon-girl, leaning lazily on the counter; he stabs out the cigarette, all finished. "No, don't know fidet spinner. What is it?" His tail is just moving about lazily now, all relaxed from booze and the company. He finishes his fourth or so glass of pure whiskey, pours another. He's drunk, but still doing mostly okay - he might even be able to walk home. "You can keep the glass thing."

"It's this thing, and it spins." Sue explains, although she doesn't sound entirely sure herself. "You know what?" She hops off the stool and reaches for the whiskey bottle with one hand, and Audgrim for the other. "Let me just show you back at the apartments while you can still walk home. There is no way I could carry you there, big guy. Even fireman's carry!" She proclaims, tugging on him. "We can finish this bottle there too, if that's what you want, but at least we'll do it safely. And without pants!" She offers as further encouragement.

Audgrim doesn't have the willpower to resist, and besides this sounds like an excellent idea. He nods over at the bartender in a silent thanks, squeezes Sue's hand in a tight grip and walks out with her. "I might start spinning," he says nonsensically.

"Oookay, big fella." She says soothingly as she slips an arm around his middle, and her arm around her neck for more support. "Just don't start spinning until we get home, otherwise I'll have to make you feel better to get home, and then you'll have to start all over again, and it'll be a while before you start spinning." She says with a grin.

"It's spring," Audgrim says, arm around her shoulder squeezing her into a hug. He is totally charmed - she's basically like him, just more… happy. Not that he's generally an unhappy guy, but that autumn creepiness is around him, and his appearance is more demonic than beastial. "I mean, you smell like spring." He sniffs at her, just to be sure as they wander down the streets, the air mild and sweet. Drinking some from the bottle, he offers it to her for a swig if she wants to have some.

"Yes it is!" She agrees, concentrating to spread her mantle out around the both of them as they walk. It's pretty easy for her, her mantle is strong and she's completely used to it. Petrichor and lilacs, two relaxing and calming scents. She accepts a sip, but only to placate him - at least until they get home. "It's so great! The other night, on the first day of Spring, I just went out and ran around in the woods all night and rolled in leaves! It was sooo wonderful! A lot of ways I'm not a typical Spring, so I'm not going to take advantage of you or anything. But if anything, I am a Spring cheerleader! Just so happy, you know? Everything's waking up and blooming and melting. It's the best ever!"

Audgrim doesn't even know what a typical spring is like - he basically only knows Bea. "Talking a lot," he says, as that's how he figures most of them are. But he says it with a grin, so he obviously doesn't mind. Outside, his mind clears a little and in a moment of cheerfulness he sweeps her up in a hug and spins around a few times, grinning wildly. "I can run in the forest too. I can run after you, hunting…" This isn't perhaps what /she/ would do in the forest, but he probably hunts animals when he goes out there. "If I catch you, I win."

"Oooh. That sounds fun!" She agrees, slipping her arms around his neck as he picks her up and spins her around. "Well, except for the running part which just seems like exercise to me. I usually talk more of a slow saunter in the woods, if I'm going to be honest. And roll around on the ground in the leaves, mostly." She admits. "What do you win if you catch me? I might just let you win."

Audgrim's shadow is disapproving of all this merriment and spinning, shaking a finger at Audgrim. The Nightsinger, puts down the Raccoon girl slowly but keeps his arms around her - he's sobered up a little. The bottle of whiskey is in his coat pocket. "Sometimes, I like to run," he muses, "but mostly I like laying on the ground too." Looking down at her, he needs to test something, so lifts a hand to caress her cheek and stroke that fur with a calloused finger. "But no fun if you don't try to run fast. And if I win, I win a-" He stops there, his mind wandering to places. "You give me a price. Something."

"Hmmm. Well I guess I will have to think about that. I do like to run." She leans up a little nuzzling against his finger. "But how do we know if I win, and what do I get?" She grins, ears perked up tail moving slowly and happily. "I'm not used to being prey." She admits, watching him quietly. "Being chased sounds a lot like being prey."

That's a good question. Audgrim considers it thoughtfully, his hand wandering down to the back of her neck where he gently caresses. The two are just standing there on the sidewalk, between two lampposts, one which doesn't even work - it's quite dark. His eyes gleam though, like on an animal. "One hour. If I don't catch you in one hour you win. I don't know what prize to give. I have nothing." He grins toothily at her. "You can chase me after - I can be prey too. Good training."

Sue wrinkles up her nose. "Exercise doesn't sound like a reward to me." She pauses, thinking as a grin comes to her face. "Well I mean, there is one kind of exercise I DO like." She admits. "I guess I'm that sort of Spring some ways. I like sex, I just don't go out and hunt for it, you know?" She moves a little closer, looking up, comfortable with the closeness. "Maybe we will both win? But right now, lets make it home. We'll get some water in you." She pauses a beat. "Maybe something in me too?"

"Mmmhmm." Audgrim agrees with her, on all those things. Some exersise is more fun than others. He lifts her, spins around one more time, then lets her go - he stumbles back a bit, as he's quite drunk still. "Yes, water. And food." He's that type that gets hungry when drunk - he takes her hand and wanders off down the dark streets, his shadow making creepy gestures next to him when they pass a lamp-post.

Sue hopes he can cook, because she can't. Even if she claims to not be a trash panda, and be more a sparkle panda…she is still a raccoon.

Audgrim can't cook, but he has frozen food he can heat!

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