Logs:Even A Cat Appreciates Kind Words

From X-Men: rEvolution
Even A Cat Appreciates Kind Words
Dramatis Personae

Rasa, The Winter Soldier

2019-11-11


I thought maybe you'd want something hot to drink.

Location

Brooklyn


The weather has improved some for the 'holiday', temperature jumping up to almost feel warm. This leaves the streets of Brooklyn somewhat bustling, those lucky enough to have the day off out and about and enjoying the sun. There are overheard snippets about upcoming freezes, rain, possible snow, as people pass the Soldier and talk to each other. Occasionally, he receives a glance, a bit of a berth, but he has found a good place to stand. An indent of the building that shelters the back and sides, keeps the body out of the sidewalk. Thanks to the general wastefulness of Americans, he has even managed to find civilian clothing. Helpful for blending in.

The Soldier should not be here. The thought jumps around the skull, makes the fingers twitch. He has a mission. Had? The target had a limited window. It's doubtful the target is still in D.C. The mission has been compromised. The Soldier knows the plan for post-compromisation: Find a safehouse. Contact the handlers. Wait for pick-up. Wait for. After.

Brow furrowing as he stares at the concrete beneath his feet, the Soldier resists the urge to slap the metal hand against the head. He should follow protocol. He knows, bone-deep, that the longer he waits to do so, the worse things will be. The same way he knows he knows without knowing how that if he started walking, he would end up in Red Hook or at the Navy Yard or--

These places are just words. They have no meaning. And yet the Soldier knows.

While the temperature is nice-er, Rasa is still a bundle of scarves. One wraps around zir neck for decoration, bright teal cords alternating with a few shades of cream and aquamarine. Over that, there's a scarf of midnight blue and black wrapped around zir head and shoulders, obscuring zir features just a little. Ze wears a light weight, sand colored jacket with fingerless gloves, over loose jeans in a grayish blue. Zir boots are black with rubber soles the color of cork, just enough heel tacked on to stand out from the drab concrete. Ze is waiting in line at a small coffee cart, getting a paper mug or three filled with some aromatic Turkish coffee. Ze pauses when ze sees the the soldier just standing there, staring at the ground, and turns back to the cashier, requesting a fourth in Russian.

Bills get exchanged for beverages, with a few coins tossed into the tip jar as ze peels away, the small cardboard container that separates and holds the four cups perched on the palm of one hand, zir fingertips gripping the edges for security. After a moment or two of further scrutiny, ze heads over and extends a cup toward the awkward human statue. "You want?"

The sudden movement at the corner of the eye. Startles. The back is pressed against the wall, back of the head scraping against stone as the Soldier suddenly looks up, blue eyes almost wild past a messy curtain of dark hair. The metal hand grips a knife in the pocket of the civilian jacket. The Soldier moves his gaze from the offered cup (Not a visible weapon, still possibly poisoned or dosed.) up to the person offering, wordlessly inspecting and analyzing zir face.

Rasa jumps a little when the Soldier looks up suddenly, reading the tension with widened eyes. "Uh. Sorry about that. Was just over there- buying coffee. You'd been waiting here so long, I thought maybe you'd want something hot to drink." Zir skin, visible at zir fingertips and around zir eyes, is a dark blue, the shots of yellow shock from zir earlier throb lightly under the surface. "I can go, if you hate coffee or people or just people like me..."

Ze returns the cup to tray, shaking off zir hand when it is safely deposited. The scarf comes down next, revealing more of zir face as ze starts to suck at the recently scorched digits.

The metal hand slowly unclenches but stays tucked away. The body stays against the wall, keeping what distance there is. Other than looking between zir hand and face again, there is no expressive reaction to zir changing skin color. Mutant. Civilian. Threat level low. Subject to change. Offered drink: probably not poisoned or dosed.

"Thank you." The voice is raspy from disuse, accent American but flatly so. It could be from anywhere. Slowly, the Soldier holds out the flesh hand. There is a feeling that he should say something else, but he doesn't know what it is.

Rasa rubs zir now dampened fingertips off on zir jacket and transfers the tray to the less sanitary hand, before offering him the coffee again - was it the same cup? Ze's not paying attention. "You're welcome." Ze lingers, taking in that cold, flat gaze. "Been waiting out here long?"

The Soldier is paying attention. After a second, two, of staring at the offered cup, the flesh hand moves to point at the cup beside the now empty spot in the container. "That one." The Soldier says, impassive. Remembers, now, one of the other things to say. "Please." The question receives a momentary flat stare, followed by a slow shake of the head. "...Not waiting."

"Oh. Well, okay." Confused, Rasa places the cup back down and exchanges it for the one the soldier picked, handing it to him. "So, just a concrete aficionado then?" That is also not expressly a question. Ze selects one of the coffees, lifting the paper in salute. "I suppose there are worse things to do. To the ground under our feet: may we never break our faces on it."

This time the Soldier takes the cup, holding it awkwardly. It's pleasantly warm against the flesh hand. However he can only stare some more at Rasa's words, completely lost to their meaning. Finally he just lifts the cup in a halting mimic of a salute. Holds it and its warmth a bit closer to his chest after. "...Thank you."

Rasa takes a sip and holds the thick, delicious against zir tongue before swallowing, the pleasure warming zir face with pinks and magentas. "Mmm. Well, enjoy!" The mutant gives the soldier a nod as ze steps back, leaving the quiet man to his contemplation.

The Soldier quietly watches zem leave, returning zir nod a beat too late to be seen. Once Rasa is out of sight, the back slowly detaches from the stone of the building wall. The metal hand emerges from the pocket. The Soldier stares down at the cup instead of the concrete now, thoughts from earlier restarting their race in the back of the mind. Where to go. What to do. Protocol, or... or what?

The flesh hand lifts the cup closer to the face, warming it with fragrant steam. The word 'coffee' flashes across the mind, before the Soldier takes a sip.

"Gosh, do you even remember the taste of real coffee?"

The voice--masculine, deep, unfamiliar--seems to come inches from the Soldier's right. For an instant, he's somewhere freezing, almost as cold as the Tank. Coffee spills over the flesh hand as the Soldier jerks, looking over at.

Nothing.