Logs:Anybody Have a Map

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Anybody Have a Map
Dramatis Personae

Charlie, Jax, Steve


"Right this way, boys. Wouldn't want you getting lost again."


<NYC> Stark Tower - Midtown

A gleaming beacon of modern architecture shining bright amidst the industry of Midtown, Stark Tower serves as headquarters to one of the largest tech corporations in the world. The offices and boardrooms of Stark Industries and any number of satellite companies, subsidiaries, and nonprofits are homed here. To the public what draws most visitors is not the business but the science -- the first two floors of the building hold an extensive museum dedicated to technological innovation. As well, guided tours three days a week are open to the public, to be shown through both the museum and, more notably, through (select parts of) the dozen floors dedicated solely to R&D.The building itself is as eye-catching inside as outside. The soaring lobby atrium extends upwards, bright and glass-walled with perpetually bustling balconies ringing each floor. All visitors must pass through the lobby security checkpoints to be signed in. The technology integrated into the building, from the interactive holographic displays that help guide visitors to their destination to the quiet AI that remembers visitors' preferences upon repeat visits to the basement arc reactor that powers the entire building, are quiet reminders of the company's dedication to innovation.

Outside the world is grey and cold and rainy but in here things are bright, bustling. Very bustling, some people tucked away at their various workstations (which range from traditional computers to impressive 3-D holographic interfaces), some working singly or in teams in the vast and well equipped labs, conference rooms full of meetings or, occasionally, overworked researchers catching quick naps, recreation areas for the employees to eat or play games when they need a stress break.

Through all of this Jax is looking -- a little bit lost, a little bit frazzled. He stands out -- not necessarily because of the vibrantly peacock-hued green-blue-purple hair or wealth of tattoos and piercings, there's no dress code here and plenty of /those/ on display among the staff! -- but vague lost expression and very slow paced walk as he looks around is definitely speaking to Out Of Place. He's dressed in a bright yellow tee shirt whose graphic can't be much read beneath the pair of dark corduroy overalls over top, mismatched red and black canvas sneakers, a large pair of dark mirrored sunglasses covering his eyes despite the fact they're indoors. In one hand, a large paper bag, still steaming, still smelling strongly of something meaty. A big VISITOR badge clipped to the left strap of the overalls. "How are these labs even numbered? I don't get it. They ain't even /got/ letters on these, is 670-P even /on/ this floor." There's a vaguely plaintive note in his heavy Appalachian drawl. He's frowning at the door in front of them. The panel beside it is labeled, unhelpfully, with a 7 and a green square.

Steve is walking alongside Jax, squinting up at the signs with no hint of comprehension. He looks a lot more conventional than his companion, brown leather jacket (visitor's badge clipped to one lapel, a small round red-white-blue shield pin on the other) worn open over a red, white, and blue plaid button-up, smartly fitted blue jeans, brown boots. He shakes his head. "I guess the ways of research folks haven't gotten any /less/ inscrutable than back in my day. Maybe we'd better stop and ask for directions." His eyes cast around helplessly for someone who doesn't look too busy to steer them right.

Charlie scrambled her way through the main area of the floor, a clipboard in hand as she fumbled to write down something rather lengthy. Her gaze shifted to the two, then quickly darted towards something that seemed like a 'main desk' - where she soon headed and began to put the clipboard away. She didn't look nervous by their presence, in fact she seemed to be. . . Ignoring them, almost. When still looking their way, she caught a glimpse of the 'VISITOR' badges they adorned, which was most likely the reason for her avoiding them. She possibly didn't have fond experiences with past visitors. . . Or, some other reason, who knows.

"Oh, pardon, miss, I'm sorry, do you --" Jax has brightened immediately upon seeing Charlie enter, taking a small step toward her with one hand raised almost in supplication. He drops it again immediately after though as the young woman pointedly ignores him, his shoulders slumping. "Oh. Well." His teeth click against his lip rings as he bites down on his bottom lip. "I guess we can go all the way back to the lobby an'. Ask for. A map? A helpful fairy to guide us? That's -- presuming I can find the lobby again."

Steve lifts both eyebrow slightly at the young woman's nonresponse. "Maybe the Internet knows...?" He sounds dubious about this. "Think I'd still be lost in the subway without Google. You know, maybe she just didn't hear you." He raises his voice just a little, moving toward Charlie more decisively than Jax. "Excuse me, Miss!" Loud or not, he's wearing a friendly and /sliiiiighty/ sheepish smile. "Do you have a moment? I'm afraid we're a bit turned around."

The shorter female paused, glancing over at him for a moment with somewhat wide eyes. Not necessarily of fear - more or less curiosity of /him./ She blinked a few times, turned around to face him, and quickly cleared her throat. "Ah - /yes/ - aarree you two lost?" She asked, clapping her hands together and keeping her gaze right up on the larger man.

"I don't know if the internet got a map of /inside/ here but it -- might. Google do know an awful lot. Maybe we -- /oh/." Relief floods Jax's expression, and he trots along in Steve's wake. Clutching the large paper bag to his chest like a valuable treasure. "Oh, gosh, thank you, miss, yes. It's just that all the last times I had to come here I gone to robots and this ain't even nowhere /like/ robots I can't tell the naming scheme on these labs at all, I swear some of them changed /while/ I been searching --" Indeed, as the test-in-progress inside lab '7 - green square' finishes its panel has, in fact, shifted and changed again behind him. 580-P, now that the room is emptying . "-- And I wanted to get these to my kid," not that he actually looks old enough to have a child /employed/ here, "-- before they gone cold but --" His cheeks flush abruptly dark crimson. "Um! Not that you need to know alla that. Sorry. We're real lost. She's in lab 670-P and at this point I ain't even sure that exists."

"It seems that we are!" Steve's gaze drops to the floor briefly as he gives a self-deprecating chuckle. "Thank you. I've been here before, but none of this looks even a bit familiar. I'm not even sure I came in the same lobby." One of his hands goes to the back his head. "This building is just /massive!/"

She paused, glancing between the two before giving a somewhat nervous smile up at Steve. " Of course, right - right this way, gentlemen. " She mustered, beginning to slink her way down one of the hallways, staying at a pace they could keep up with. " Here for lab 670-P, correct? Just want to be clear. "

"Yes -- um, I think." Confident and then immediately unsure, Jax takes out his phone to double check. "Yes! My kid usually works in robotics but she been assigned here for now so I thought I'd bring her some lunch and -- see what's her new project like maybe? Not that I'll probably understand it I'm sure it's kind of out of my pay grade but. Do you work in this department too? You might meet her, if you see her 'round she's --" For a moment he looks at Charlie -- blushes again. "Hard to miss. How long you been with Stark?"

"Oh, good, we won't have to eat B's lunch to survive, after all." Steve sounds very cheerful. And not quite /entirely/ like he's joking. "What /does/ this department make, anyway?"

"I've been with Mr. Stark for a few months, I was recently employed by him after a bit of a 'falling out' situation with my old job working with NASA. However, I don't work in your daughter's department. I focus primarily on atmospheric studies, however this does correspond somewhat with tech - but not as much as her department does." She admitted, glancing over at Jax for a moment before drawing her attention towards Steve. "Well, primarily this department focus more on studies - and requires experience with things such as computer science, mathematics, chemistry, physics, meteorology, radiative transfer, or fluid dynamics. It gets into the nitty gritty science of things - which, for that reason, I like to refer to myself as one of the 'scientists' of this industry." She giggled playfully, snickering beneath her breath.

"Oh -- oh. /NASA/, That sounds --" Jax hesitates, fingers crumpling noisily into the paper of the bag he's holding. "Fanc... no, I mean, impressive. Prob'ly took a lotta schooling for all that, huh? Have you liked it here? I hear it's tough, but --" He shrugs a shoulder, uncertain. "But it seems like it would be a good place to work. If you're --" His hand waves vaguely around the labs they're walking by. "Real keen on all the sciencing."

Steve's eyes get bigger and bigger as Charlie lists the things her department studies. "Gosh, that's -- a lot!" Then he smiles fondly, looking around him. "I don't know a whole lot about the current reigning Stark, but his father, back when I knew him? Sounds like he would have loved all this. He was really a scientist at heart." The smile fades, just a little, and he seems to take a sudden intense interest in an emergency evacuation map they're passing.

"Very science-y indeed." Charlie chirped at Jax, "It's a lot of work, however it is my passion! Can't beat that, half the time it doesn't even feel like a job!". Her half-lidded attention soon directed it's way towards Steve. . . She watched him for a moment as they walked, eventually stopping to look at the map. "Something wrong, sir?" She asked, raising a slight eyebrow but keeping her expression the same - only a /slight/ sense of concern in her eyes.

"I don't /know/ Mr. Stark none too well an' he sure got himself a reputation, but --" Jax shrugs a shoulder, his tone thoughtful. "He gave B a job here when basically everyone else looked at her an' thought there weren't no way a little blue teenager could be worth hiring. And he's been in her corner since. Earns him at least --" He hesitates, for a long moment of consideration. "Like a -- tenth of a point in my book." His sunglass-shaded gaze turns briefly to look toward the map. Then to Steve, his smile a little brighter and tone cheerful. "We almost there? This place is like a labyrinth, huh? You know the /whole/ first two floors they got this big old museum it's chock full of -- even the old timey tech got invented here like. Way back when. Founding days and all."

"Oh! No, I'm fine, it was just --" Steve's pale blue eyes flick aside to Jax. "Yeah, I just thought that map might give me some clues where we are, but no such luck! It's a good thing we have our very own guide!" He nods earnestly. "It's wonderful you're passionate about your work." His tone is...not /cheerful/, exactly, but gamely positive. "Maybe you'll discover things that change the face of science, help unravel the mysteries of Creation." Pauses a beat, hesitant. "Is that museum downstairs...open to the public?"

Charlie kept her focus on the map, scanning it over momentarily before glancing back towards Steve. She shifted, hesitating for a moment more. " The museum? Oh, yes - it is open. " She replied, tilting her head somewhat. " Are you wanting to stop by there? "

"You make it sound so glowy, what all get done here. Museum should hire /you/ for a docent." Jax rocks briefly up onto his toes, back onto his heels. Pats the side of his paper bag, a little protectively. "Is it much farther? I didn't mean to get us so turned round!"

"I was just curious," Steve replies brightly. "But yeah, I just might stop by sometime. For old time's sake, you know." He gives a soft puff of a laugh. "Maybe they'll hire me for an /exhibit./ Oh!" He points down the hallway. "Hey, is /that/ 670-P?"

"That? Oh, yes - it is -" She smiled somewhat, glancing at him with a purr before letting her gaze fall half lidded. "Right this way, boys. Wouldn't want you getting lost again." She snickered, leading them down towards the lab.

Jax looks from Charlie to Steve, and then ahead of them, his cheeks tinging pink again. His steps speed up just a little, hastening toward the laboratory door. "Thank you so much! I think B's lunch is even still hot. I /really/ appreciate the help, miss. I hope we didn't get too much in the way of your work."

"I guess we didn't inspire a whole lot of confidence, wandering around like we were." Steve blushes very slighlty, too. "Would probably still be, if you hadn't helped us out. Much obliged, Miss." He flashes Charlie a winning smile, lifts his hand, and taps a knuckle to his temple. "Good luck with the secrets of Creation!"

She paused, staring over at the two before a faint tint of red wash over her face. She blinked for a moment - shook her head - and dragged herself from her thoughts. "You're - welcome. Glad I could be of your service, sir -" She murmured, keeping her gaze nearly centered on Steve before giving a mere wave to them both.