Logs:Deficiency of Normal

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Deficiency of Normal
Dramatis Personae

Gaétan, Desi


"{We had best work out the logistics a bit better if we're going to lean into this nonsense.}"


<NYC> New Museum - The Bowery

This contemporary art museum's unusual, asymmetrical architecture makes it look like a piece of modern art itself. It's renowned for daring and thought-provoking exhibits, and currently the entirety of the museum is given over to "The Young Lords and their Traces", a multidisciplinary homage to place and community and radical influences on art. One of the pieces currently activated, "A Heavenly Chord", seeks to blur the lines between installation and performance art as a live musician plays original pieces inspired by various sacred and monastic musical traditions on a custom-built organ that fills the entire building with ethereal sound.

Desi had mentioned treating her brother to lunch after exploring the exhibit, but she did not mention this would involve getting one of her college friends to let them out onto the rooftop terrace. A single table has been set for them at the edge of the terrace, with a gorgeous view of the Lower East Side and the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges, but close enough to the indoor portion of the rooftop to still hear the organ clearly. Her outfit gives a nod to the height of spring fashion this year, if sort of a haughty and distant nod: a cinched, unstructured blazer in soft lilac, with a bright leaf green silk cravat that brings out her eyes as much as the new leaves everywhere, a swishy midi skirt with a sheer brown gauze top layer whose openwork embroidery shows flashes of the startling fuchsia satin beneath, and slouchy fawn knee-high boots.

"This is an event space for rent," she's explaining as she unpacks the impressive picnic she'd presumably stashed there earlier, "but it wasn't in use and Nels owed me favor." A hefty thermos of tea has its own colorful nested cups, matching the plates and cutlery for the pear and walnut salad, prosciutto-wrapped figs with goat cheese, roast beef sandwiches cut into neat triangles, and blackberry tartlets. "If none of this appeals, I have it on good authority their cafe is pretty great."

Gaétan has been wandering the roof in a slow amble, hands in his pockets in a way that gives his posture a casual slouch at odds with his keenly appreciative gaze. He's more casual than his sister, black jeans with sparkling white sneakers, white tee with an unbuttoned green and white striped short sleeved button down over top. "No, this is fine." His wandering drifts back in the direction of Food, which he looks at with a critical frown that doesn't quite match up with, "this is great. This has been great." His hands don't leave his pockets. He rocks slowly back onto his heels. Up onto his toes. Back down. He's looking at the tartlets steadily. "... did you make all this?"

Desi adjust the last plate and stands back to admire her handiwork. She looks up and considers her brother's frown, her own smile undimmed though it goes a little sheepish at the question. "Most of it. The tarlets were Luci, though I did help. Everything else was pretty simple, really." She rests her elegant, long-fingered hands on the back of the chair in front of her, her expression easing into careful neutrality. "You might be speaking too soon about the food, but I aimed high, so hopefully. Shoot for the moon and so on." Her gaze slides out over the rooftops to the distant river, and then back to Gaétan. A less familiar eye might miss her disquiet as she ventures an uncertain smile, just slightly lopsided. "Too much?"

At first Gaétan doesn't answer. He does sit down, reaching out to pluck up a fig and take a bite of half of it. "Still good," he judges. He leans back in his chair, head tipping against its back and his eyes turning up toward the sky. "If this was Luci I'd be like, s'just how he is, y'know. Not that you aren't a..." He trails off, one leg bouncing in place. Shakes his head before eating the rest of the fig. "I dunno," is just a little quicker than his previous words. "It's fine."

"I've given up on trying to be Luci," Desi says equably as she takes her own seat. "This is just me trying to make up for lost time--even though I know it doesn't work like that--and we lost so much." She doesn't start in on the food immediately, but does watch Gae's first bite expectantly as she fills the cups with a bold Tie Guan Yin. "{But, even if it's a shitty apology, I wanted at least to make it a pleasantly shitty one.}"

"If you were Luci I wouldn't be here, so there's also -- that." Gaétan takes the tea, fingers drumming against the side of the cup. His brows lift, eyes meeting Desi's expectantly. "{You have to actually apologize for an apology.}"

"If I were Luci, I wouldn't be here." Desi tips the cup she just picked up in a very generally north-westerly direction. She starts to drop her gaze, but stops when Gaétan meets hers. "{I'm sorry for abandoning you when you could have really used my support, and for also generally being a self-absorbed bitch ever since.}" She may not be on Broadway, but she's almost assuredly been looping that line. "I kept thinking I should just try to be normal, but. It doesn't work like that, either."

"Oh, definitely not here when you could be at Bible study." Gaétan isn't looking theatre-wards. He takes a sip of his tea, his fingers tighter around his mug as Desi apologizes. His brows lift, mouth twitching to the side with a faint (faintly skeptical) consideration that resolves into a reluctant acceptance. Maybe his nod is a thanks. Maybe it's just -- just. He sinks just a little lower in his seat. "{What's normal.}"

Desi snorts. "Shocking that she went through with it after studying with him, but at least that's done." She sips the tea, then shifts it into both hands so she can breathe it in while she considers. "{Hang out? Buy you stupid gag gifts? Ask about your week and dispense sage advice you didn't ask for?}" Though she finally does admit, "{I'm not really sure, and I'm even less sure it was ever really what you wanted.}" Then, as if remembering she has to actually ask for it to be a question, as well, adds, "{What do you want normal to be?}"

"{Please,}" Gaétan sounds light here, dismissive, "{the fuck have any of us ever known from normal.}" He starts to arrange a plate for himself, a little bit of Everything, working his way through a first neat triangle of sandwich with the appetite of a teenage boy who is definitely not going to let an entire truckload of Stressful Conversation and Lifetime Baggage stop him from delicious meal. Just as light, though his eyes are skipping away from his sister to fix steadily on a pinnacle of the Brooklyn Bridge. "{... pretty sure my normal's never been any of yours. And anyway --}" Anyway doesn't come, though. He crams the rest of his sandwich into his mouth and washes it down with a gulp of tea. "{What do you want? Take a two year sabbatical from us and now --?}"

Desi lifts her brows and gives a small, noncommittal nod in concession to their hereditary deficiency of Normal. "{I was thinking of our own brand of normal, however abnormal that may be, but...}" She trails off, frowning, and follows her brother's averted gaze. "{Never?}" There's no challenge in this, her tone pensive and curious. "{I want to be part of the family again.}" Only now does she pluck up a prosciutto-wrapped fig to set it neatly on her plate. "{If whatever passed for our normal before didn't suit you, maybe we should rebrand.}"

"Fff." Gaétan shrugs, starting in on his salad. "{So be part of the family again.}" Something small and quick crosses his expression -- it doesn't quite crumple but for just a second it looks like it is threatening to, before it returns to a kind of lassitude. "{... whatever's left of it.} The fuck we gonna rebrand to. Put up a counter. {This Many Years Since A Tessier Has Died.}" A thin smile, bleak but not entirely humorless, cuts across his face. "{This Many Years Since A Tessier Has Absurdly Improbably Returned From The Dead.} Totally Normal Tessier Things."

Desi freezes, her expression momentarily opaque,, but then mirrors her brother's smile. "{Okay, but see, that's already our brand.}" She sets down her teacup and finally does start nibbling daintily on her fig hors d'oeuvre. "{If you are not getting what you want--what you need--from us, we should change until you do. Until we all do.}" She puts the food back down. "I realize that's easier said than done, but it doesn't mean it shouldn't be said. We don't have to be defined by our dysfunction. Or our...gods, whatever that is. Curse?" She quirks a rueful smile of her own. "Anyway, if I die young, I might have to come back just so you can say you told me so."

Gaétan presses his lips together, leveling a critical frown on Desi. "Can't," he tells her, finally, firm and confident. "You're out of order. Oldest, then youngest -- we're back to older again, Luci's definitely going next. How, it's anyone's guess. If he stays in character it's gonna be some fascist bullshit, somehow freeze in fucking time, pop back up when we're all old like heeeeey how's the future." He pops a chunk of pear into his mouth, tone just slightly wry. "{You and I will be old hat at this shit by then, though, we'll have kept his room all ready for him just in case.}"

Desi's hand lifts to cover the laugh that catches her off-guard. "{Not unless one of us were dead at the time and still waiting to come back. We had best work out the logistics a bit better if we're going to lean into this nonsense.}" She breathes out and tips her head back to look at the sky. "{Though it may take me seventy-five years to figure out how to follow his act and yours. I'd really rather everyone just lay off the creative death and resurrection for a good long while. Maybe we can make a musical together instead.}"

"{Yeah, I mean, no repeats so you'll have to get real fucking creative by then.}" Something in Gaétan's wry smile eases -- for perhaps the first time today, genuinely just bright and easy. "Oh! I'm ahead of you there." He's dragging his chair closer to Desi's, taking out his phone so he can pull up his songwriting app, flick through it, excited. "{-- You should see what I've been working on lately, it's --}" Despite this burst of eagerness he's a little hesitant when he offers the phone out. "{I mean, it won't actually be on stage till next month.}"

Desi takes the phone, her lunch quite forgotten though she reaches again for her tea as she scrolls through the project open on the phone. "{Oh, this is delightful!}" She mouths some of the lyrics to herself as she scans through them, smiling bright and unguarded. "{I can't wait to see it.}" She flicks back to the top as she turns that smile up to Gaétan. "{Now, you must tell me about the staging. How are you distinguishing the different 'feeds' in this first number...}