Pleasurable Business

Aidan's Flat

The two-story flat takes up residence on the top space of its building. The building is an old hotel that was reconstructed into flats in the 1950s, and has been updated sporadically every twenty or thirty years.

The flat is very open and inviting, with rooms flowing into each other seamlessly, marked only by the complimentary changes in decor - tile and flooring, color of the walls. It’s decorated in a contemporary modern style with light colored wood and chrome, and highlights of dark marble or granite, ceramic tiles and hardwood floors covered over with tasteful area rugs. An open staircase leads up to the three bedrooms on the second floor.

The living/sitting/lounge area has a large picture window that peers over the city. There is an electric fireplace in one corner of the room, over which hangs a large flat screen television. A Fazioli baby grand piano stands in one corner, and the question lurks of whether is it ever used or is there purely for decoration.


Characters

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Aidan Elspeth

If he didn't occupy the top floor of the building, Aidan was certain that his neighbors would be complaining. As it stands, he doesn't know if the people below him might not be complaining about the pulsing music rocking the loft walls, the hard to miss bass vibrating the floor. He also doesn't care, and if anyone comes up to complain about it, he'll be certain that they forget to care as well.

The night is young, which means he's only been 'awake' for an hour or so, but the vampire has eaten - and sent the delicious red head on her way - enough to sate him for several hours, and he doesn't have any particular plans for the night. He's thinking about going clubbing - he hasn't done that in a few weeks, and it's always a fantastic way to feed so many of his appetites - which is why he's standing shirtless in his bedroom while he rustles through his wardrobe looking for his favorite shirt.

"Where's my shirt?" Seeking has not yielded it after a few minutes, so he's on the telephone to Kim. The restaurant sounds busy, and her tone is annoyed. "What do you mean, what shirt? My favorite shirt… not that one the other one."

Aidan pulls the telephone away from his ear and glares at it when he realizes that he's listening to dead air. With several colorful curses, in several languages, Aidan tosses the mobile on the bed. He only lets Kim get away with that crap because she's so bloody useful to him.

-

"Black again? Are you attempting to look like Johnny Cash?"

The voice may be surprising to someone who believes he's in his apartment on his own, except someone has snuck in via the window. A little uncouth, but it's far more amusing this way.

"Frustrating those in your employ and allowing them to get away with it? You are having far too much fun acting human."

-

Aidan's reflexes and reactions kick in before he fully registers the voice or even that he's reacted. This is his home, his inner sanctum and it's been breached. It's no wonder that he has the other vampire pinned against the far wall and a threatening snarl ripping from his throat in the span of a few human heartbeats. It's only when he meets the amber eyes does the predatory territorialness fade, and he loosens his grip on her.

"There's this fantastic new invention, Elsie. They're called doors. They come with doorbells. You should try them out sometime." She should know better than to surprise him like that.

-

There is a laugh that comes after she's against the wall. Elspeth just smiles at him. "Last time you pinned me like this, you at least ensured there was a pretty little thing to dine on first." Winking, she waits until he loosens his grip and then flashes fang at him, daring him to try it again.

"Darling, please. The door would have been far too easy, and I really would rather not have been spotted by your neighbors. Especially the one with the yappy little dog. I am quite surprised you have not yet snapped its neck."

Hands set her clothing to rights and she takes a few steps away from the wall.

-

Aidan cocks a half-amused, half-appreciative grin in her direction. "Sorry, I've already eaten. If I had known you'd be dropping in, I would have waited." He's almost tempted to take up her dare, but holds his place until he finds out why she's here. He's hoping for social visit, but given their encounter in the Undercity, Aidan can't be sure.

"The little beast isn't so bad. Besides, I like Mrs. Henry." Beat. "Her neice anyway. She always drops by for a bite when she visits her dear old aunt. You know I've never been one to ruin a good thing like a free, easy meal." Among other things.

-

"Little. Yappy." Elspeth has never been overly fond of dogs, though she seems to tolerate the larger ones far better than the ones that never stop yapping.

"And muss your flat? Hardly seems appropriate. Blood is far too difficult to wash from the synthetic fibers." A glance down the hall to the furniture and she beckons for him to follow to the seating area. "Beyond which, while a willing food source is enough for sustenance, I would much prefer a hunt. A real hunt. Not simply slipping into a dance club."

Taking a seat upon the arm of the sofa, she locks her eyes on him. Keeping him always in her sights no matter where he means to move. "I may have a task for you. It pays well enough."

-

Aidan's brows rise as the female vampire turns and beckons him to follow her in his own flat. It's at that moment that he dismisses the notion of a social visit, as vastly disappointing as that is. Still, Aidan doesn't bend that easily and he returns his attention to his wardrobe. "You and me both, but in case you haven't noticed, that's getting harder and harder these days." There are ways and methods, and he's employed them, but the easy way is … easy.

He picks a shirt, a button-down in a dark navy and slides his arms into the sleeves as he strolls casually toward the living room. His lips twitch and there's another brow lift at the sight of the blonde vampire perched on the arm of his sofa.

Aidan doesn't need money, and surely Elspeth has to know that. The vampire doesn't point out the obvious, however, instead choosing to find out where she's going with this. "This would be so much more fun if this were a social visit," Aidan sing songs as he begins to button up his shirt. "But, what's this job?"

-

"I prefer the navy to the black. The colour is just off-set enough so as not to make you look so pale." Once he seems to finally finish dressing, she laughs.

"Who says it is not going to be a social call. I simply figured that since you seem well acquainted with our necromancer friend already, that if you chanced upon him again you could offer him a pilfered book from the old woman's collection." Rather simply, really. "Then I ask you what you would wish in return for doing that. You reply. Then we can return to pleasantries."

-

Aidan grins at the fashion commentary, possibly as close as anyone gets to seeing a genuine smile, one that isn't calculating or meant to put a human at ease for one reason or another. "Thank you, always good to have a second opinion. Though I'd have settled for, 'Aidan, you look good.'" He's only half joking with the last because it is sometimes amazing that he doesn't trip over his own ego.

"What's that about then, anyway? The necromancer? I didn't even think they were real." The word 'real' is stressed with a dramatic roll of his eyes. He holds up a hand before she says anything, "Yes, I know, you'd think I'd be a lot more open minded after so many centuries."

There's not a lot of thought given to Elspeth's offer. It isn't like he didn't plan on making nice with the necromancer again anyway. Always good to have all sorts of contacts. Aidan lifts a shoulder in a shrug, "I can do that. He's interesting. But what I'm really curious about —" Just like that, he's in front of her, resting a hand on either side of her where she perches on the sofa. "Did you really know one of his ancestors?" There's just the barest hint of lechery in his voice as he asks.

-

Elspeth laughs, then mimics, "Aidan, you look good." He's given another playful wink, and then she rolls her shoulders backward slowly.

"There is far more that is real, but he is not one that I would recommend as a friend. I have heard stories of vampires that have had souls that are not their own forcibly placed back into their bodies." The playful look upon her face dissipates, hardening a little.

Which lasts all of a few seconds as the curiosity of an old friend comes into play.

"Darling, do you really think I would lie about something like that? Really, what would the point be? It would hardly torture poor Dr. Watson if I was merely toying with him." A sly smile touches her lips, almost causing her amber eyes to twinkle. "I knew him if that is what you are asking."

-

"Sounds unfortunate," Aidan concedes. "I never said I wanted to make friends with the bloke. I said he's interesting. Worth studying and poking at. But, I will take your warning to heart." Meaning that Aidan will do whatever rash and reckless thing that he intends to do anyway.

Her admission earns another smirk, this one wry and playful, an equally playful and mischeivous light flickering in Aidan's blue eyes. He leans in, brushing his lips against the shell of her ear as he croons, "Naughty, naughty Elsie. And you say that I'm so bad."

Aidan leans back then, meeting her gaze. "Do we have a timeline for this book delivery, and what do you want from Watson?" Because Aidan knows how this game is played, and there has to be something.

-

"Aidan, I am very serious on this. From the knowledge I have it is not something you can recover from. Do not irk him too badly." It almost sounds as if she's concerned for someone other than herself. That would hardly be the case though, right?

"Naughtier than even you could imagine," she whispers at him. "Would you care to meet him?"

She lets that sink in, and waits for the reaction.

"When next you meet. Simply tell him that you snuck it out of her area, and that as he seemed so interested you figured he could make heads or tails of it." The book is really nothing. Not a journal. Not an account. Just a mess of nonsense ramblings that have no meaning, hold no prophecy. "At the moment, simply someone to keep an eye on him when I cannot. Which is why I have offered you payment." Not merely just ordered or requested it on behalf of Erik. "To keep me apprised of the temperature of the situation."

-

Aidan bites back the quip of 'Yes Mum,' that's just hovering on the tip of his tongue. If Elsie considers it risky enough to give a second warning, he really will take the warning under consideration. He does prefer his continued existence, as opposed to … not. "I'll be nice," Aidan promises and then blue eyes roll upwards in anticipation of the objections. "I'm not always an ass. I can play nice with others." Even when he's not getting something out of it.

"I can imagine an awful bloody lot." Blue eyes do widen however as he processes her words and Aidan looses a low chuckle. "Suppose that I shouldn't be surprised, but I have to say, I didn't imagine that. I knew that I liked you for a reason. You never cease to amaze me." A genuine compliment from Aidan, it's a night for rarities apparently.

Aidan doesn't imagine that the task Elsie has asked of him will be too difficult. Watson seems easy enough to handle and manipulate, the only hitch might be that irritating little witchling who seems to have taken an obscene interest in Watson and his research. He's not going to ask for that however, because Aidan doesn't think he needs help handling one little witch.

"Done," Aidan agrees. "I will happily keep you informed of whatever Watson happens to get up to."

He hasn't yet said what he wants as payment, though.

-

Leaning back a little she slowly runs her tongue along her upper lip. "I doubt it would have been possible had he not wanted it, considering that we cannot glamour them, but…" Elspeth allows another smile to touch lightly upon her lips. "… they do taste exquisite." Not that she'd recommend that he attempt to take a little nip from Watson.

"I am quite pleased then." For it means one less task she must see to in the evenings before returning to work for Erik. "The only thing we have not settled upon is your price."

-

Crystal blue eyes watch the motion of the tongue over her lip. Aidan's almost — almost — tempted to follow the path with his own, but they're not quite finished with business yet. He considers it a moment, his mind flickering back to the red head witch, and then shifting to a different face - a brunette who is simply being difficult, but who hasn't upset his pleasant, comfortable little world by getting in his way.

"I may," Aidan pauses, drawing out the thought, "Have run into a spot of trouble with a little witch. I don't need her taken care of, I'm certain I can handle that, but … a talisman or some sort of protection until I can handle her. I'd rather not be flambed if I can help it."

He doesn't expect that Elsie will have access to the item, but he thinks she can probably point him to someone who can help him.

-

Elspeth considers the request. There is no movement from her as she does. Not even the faintest twitch of reaction.

Minutes pass before she queries, "A talisman simply to protect against fire, or to protect against witchery?" The difference is probably negligible, as chances of the latter existing, let alone existing within the city at this current time are slim.

"The former I can have here before the sun rises. The latter… may be much more difficult to come by. Not entirely impossible, mind, though it may take a week or more." To even locate one that would know of where to obtain such an item.

-

Despite his tendency to react and his leanings toward impulsivitiy, Aidan can wait and he can do so patiently. He's as old as Elspeth, and can go into the same thought fugues. The answer, like so many other things tonight, isn't what he expects. The thought that he might actually be protected from anything that Corrie might throw at him does have its appeal. Truthfully, Aidan really doesn't want to tangle with the witch again, not unless he knows without a doubt that he's coming from a true position of power. It's not that he's afraid of her, or even worried that she might be too strong willed to glamour a second time. No, it's the knowledge that typically where there are witches, there are covens and taking on one witch is very different from taking on her coven.

"I'd much prefer the latter, but I think the former will do just fine. She strikes me as something of a fire brand." There are other things she can do to him, but if Aidan's memory serves, nothing is as damaging as fire and the little witch certainly seemed more the sort to attack and flee than to hang around and try to finish him off. Besides, something that difficult to find might come with a higher price favor than keeping an eye on a geeky necromancer.

Elspeth, Aidan notices, doesn't ask after how he managed to get himself in this predicament and he doesn't offer. He does instead draw closer to her, bright blue eyes darkening as he licks his lips. His voice is low and suggestive, "Are we done with the business end of things now?"

-

"The former then," Elspeth murmurs. Much easier to obtain, seeing as she just happens to have a contact that tends to invest in such things. The moody silence of just moments ago evaporates easily enough and she nods.

"One day I will ask what you did to gain the ire of a witch, but for this evening I do believe that business has been concluded."

Reaching up to delicately trace her index finger along the curve of his jaw, she leans in and whispers, "Now we can have fun with the social portion of the visit, unless you are in a hurry to run off to your restaurant."

-

"Funny coincidence," Aidan turns his head and catches her fingertip with his lips. Blue eyes meet amber and he bites down, intentionally nicking her with a fang, never letting his gaze waver. His tongue flicks against the drop of blood, and he slowly licks his lips. When he speaks again, his voice is husky and heavy, "I have the night off."

He has her pinned on the couch beneath his body in the next moment, and he smirks down at her although they both know she's only there because she allows it. "I do so love it when you drop in."

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