ArchivedLogs:Tis The Season
|Tis The Season|
"Well, it /is/ the spookiest time of year."
<NYC> Strand Books - East Village
The Strand manages to pack a whole lot of character into one bookstore, but they have a lot of space to fit it in. They advertise themselves as having eighteen miles of books, and whether or not that is true, it certainly is true that they have an enormous number of shelves packed into their rows and rows and rows of books. A book-lover's haven, this East Village landmark boasts an enormous collection of volumes of all types among their stacks, crammed into the narrow aisles. Well-known for their rare and out-of-print collection, they have many hard to find volumes tucked away in their labyrinth of shelves as well.
Outside it is grey, a light but steady rain that's been going on long enough, now, to turn the sidewalks and streets dark and slick. It doesn't show signs of letting up any time soon, steady patter tap-tap-tapping relentlessly against the glass of the enormous bookstore.
In here, though: warm and dry. Cosy, even! At least, it's cosy in the little corner of the store (nearby a large and well-stocked section titled 'Crafts' where books range from the oddly niche (one entire book dedicated solely to how to crotchet phone cosies) to the very broad (Farming made simple!')
In this section is Lucien -- dressed in clothes that, while casual, have an elegant tailoring to them. Dark jeans, a crisp seafoam-green long-sleeved button-down shirt. He has a matte black thermos held in one hand and one shoulder is fetched up against the side of one of the stacks -- he's looking /outward/ (away from the books) toward a cluster of comfortable-looking armchairs nearby as he thumbs with a mild interest through the pages of one large volume held in his hand. "They really should not let tourists write books on how to craft your own zombie-defense paraphenalia," he is musing to his companion, a soft francophone accent colouring his quiet voice, "This looks elegant, certainly, but is it /practical/?" He's holding the book open to a picture of hand-crafted nunchuks.
Amber walks over to Lucien, peering over his shoulder. Amber ponders to herself, "Well there was one already so I supppose there could be another so maybe these items will be useful, but they might not help against mutant zombies if they still have their powers."
Not far away, Matt is scouring the shelves with a wild gleam in his bright green eyes, though he already has three books cradled in the crook of one arm. He's wearing a pinpoint orchid button-up shirt (no tie) and gray linen slacks, the hair on his head very short. He stops long enough to peer at the page Lucien holds out. And then past him at the teenager before she even speaks. "I don't think they would be my weapon of choice if another outbreak were to come, gods forbid. Not even if I did know how to use nunchakus, which I--and, I suspect, most people who keen to wield--do not. Good afternoon, there."
Beneath the crisp neat fabric of his shirt, Lucien's shoulders stiffen juuust a hair. The book snaps shut in his hands, quick and firm; he tucks it underneath an arm as he straightens. His other hand curls its fingers just a little tighter around his thermos. Pulling away from the shelving unit, he takes a step back and away from Amber as he turns around, bright green eyes sweeping down over her with a quick assessing flick. His face is carefully composed, features arranged into calm neutrality. His voice is still soft, polite when he finally inclines his head and greets Amber: "Salut." His eyes fall from the girl back down to -- well, his book is closed, now, its shiny title proclaiming: /Surviving Zombies (On A Budget)/ with a subheading of /Crafty protection for the DIY New Yorker/.
Though still polite, his lips press together, thinner, more pinched, his brow slightly furrowed as he answers (slightly distastefully): "Mutant zombies do retain their abilities. In most cases, to no great use for them. I don't know that the majority of mutant abilities are much help in acquiring flesh."
Amber smiles slyly, "You never know. Mutant powers are capable of all sorts of things. If you freeze dry the flesh and save it for a later date, won't that be helpful?"
Matt blinks at Amber, then blinks again, though there's no furrow in his brows nor any particular censure in his voice when he relies, "Potentially helpful, but not very appetizing. Well, probably /neither/ to most zombies."
One of Lucien's eyebrows quirks up just a small fraction of an inch. "Freeze dry it? Save it for later?" There's another quick flicker of his eyes that sweeps over Amber. "We /are/ still talking about the zombies, I do hope?"
Amber nods, as she said, "While the zombie immobilizes the foes's feet and arms, they can eat some flesh now and save some for later when it gets hungry. What do you think I meant? Zombie mutants can be scary because you never know what they have up their sleeve." She smiles slightly, her hands tucking into her pockets.
Matt lifts the fingers of his free hand to his lips as he studies the young woman, his expression mild. "Mm. No, I still think it's mainly the part where they're trying to eat my flesh without my approval." His shoulders hitch upward very slightly. "And, for that matter, most people don't know what /living/ mutants have up their sleeves, either."
There's a very slight twitch at the corner of Lucien's mouth, quick and then gone again too fast to tell whether it had been angling /up/ or /down/. "I had not even begin to speculate," he replies in a soft voice -- drifting, now, slightly further into the aisle (though his path gives as wide a berth to Amber as is possible) so that he can tuck his book back into the niche it came from. "But given that zombies generally plan their meals with great forethought, your answer --" His fingertips flutter lightly in Amber's direction, "Does seem like the most logical response."
Tilting her head at Lucien, Amber asks, "Why are you avoiding me? Did I scare you?" She pulls her hands out of her pockets and raises them in the air, "I won't harm you. I swear."
"Well, it /is/ the spookiest time of year." Matt sounds--almost serious, about this. "Zombies or no." He wraps both arms around the books he had gathered. His smile seems entirely sincere. "Do have a good day, now."
"It hadn't occurred to me that you would." Lucien picks his way back to Matt's side, casting a sidelong glance to the spines of the books in the other man's arms. "And don't tempt fate. It may be in keeping with the season, but I do quite hope that this Halloween we can skip the plague of flesh-eating monsters." He tips his head to Amber in a quiet nod of farewell. "Take care." One hand moving to press lightly to Matt's back, he is gentle -- but firm -- in steering the older man away from all the books and toward the distant cash registers.
Amber waves good-bye, "Take care."