Uncrossed Paths

The Bass Cafe

The bar, when entered, gives off something of a green and oakwood glow. The bar runs along more than half of the depth of the bar, the green inlay in the blond oak serving as something of a base for the rest of the room. Green glassed pub-lights hang from the ceilings in clusters of 4, giving off something of a brighter glow to offset the hunter green shades.

Behind the bar, there is an arched mirror that runs the length of the bar, before which stands 5 rows of all sorts of alcohol upon a dark green counter-top, in graduated heights so the labels can be seen as well as some clean wine glasses. The 8 large-sized cabinets underneath store all manners of overstock and glasses. The chairs in front of the bar are basic, single-slat backed, four-footed, oak coloured bar seats.

The red brickface above the bar is laden with decorations all of a fishing kind, from small lures to larger ones, nets of all shapes and sizes, traps…

The rest of the bar is filled out with tables that can seat two, four and up to six comfortably. Upon the hunter green painted walls hang black and white photographs of the fishermen and their catches that couldn't get away. There is the gratuitous dart board corner as well as a single snooker table.


Characters

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Emily Alexandra Corrie Aidan

There are some places in London town where people go to ground. Where people feel safe. At home.

Charlie's used to be that place for Miss Emily Bennett, but there's just some undefinable twinge that comes with walking in that familiar door, being faced with the expanse of bar and brick. It's nothing she can put a finger on, and after a (watered down) pint, the feeling takes a back seat enough for her to relax and enjoy.

This is just one of those nights that she finds herself in her co-worker's.. her superior's pub. (Charlie still insists it's a 'bar', in the classic American sense.) Dressed down and casually with a blouse, nice pants, canvas sneakers, her hair is tucked up behind her in a loose pony tail; out of the way. A pint, now half gone, is before her, and she's talking rather animatedly with her friend, the word interspersed with soft laughs; and she can be a friend, now that they're off the clock…

"I hadn't really given it too much thought, actually.. I mean, there it was—"

-

Alex sits beside Emily, a rich lager in her mug. She is laughing with her friend, though the shifter's restlessness is notable. And new. But, the Witch simply files it away for later. Anyone can have an 'off' night, where even the most familiar and friendly of places don't settle you down. Even Alex has had nights like that. Even here.

"Right in front of you the whole time," she interjects, chuckling as Emily flips a light gesture. She reaches for her pint and takes an easy sip.

"'S always the way, innit?"

-

Corrie's not been here long, just long enough to place an order and scoot back outside to take a call from Amber. When she re-enters, it's with a shake of her head as she wanders to the bar to pay for her drink and take a look around.

She needs this night off, and she's happy Amber's still in Paris with her parents. The comfort of the American 'bar' is a good refuge, and as she's not yet spotted Dr. Watson, she's sure she'll be able to actually relax this evening.

Not entirely dressed down, but not as dressed up as usual, she's sporting a grey camisole, a white crochet vest, and a pair of black denim leggings. Her hair has been quickly pulled up into a messy ponytail.

Finally turning away from the door, she sips at her pint and just tries to put all the stress to the side for now, almost wishing she'd asked Connor or Tristan to come with her.

-

There are other places where Aidan could be tonight. As a matter of course, he needs to be back at Flare, trying his hand at a few of the Creole recipes. Chances are he will be before long, or maybe he'll wait until after he's had a full night and can have the restuarant to himself. Whatever the case, it won't be until he's checked the last known haunt of one necromancer.

Sean didn't answer his phone, and Aidan's been waiting for a call back for a few days. He's going to be a pain in the neck - no pun intended - to get that book back from Sean before Elsie takes matters into her own hands. He's not sure how he's held her off for this long, other than she seems to have taken some perverse interest in the man. That probably doesn't bode well for Sean, but it's a long term interest and that means that Sean will still be useful to Aidan in the short term for translating and tracking down the source of that journal.

He only needs to set foot inside to know that the necromancer isn't there. Still, Aidan continues in, his eyes tracking across the bar to decide whether he should go or stay - there's a familiar glint of red hair, and with a wry, smug smile the decision is made for him. He's halfway to her side, when the peal of feminine laughter rings out, and Aidan can't help but turn his head.

He blinks. Erik's shifter… that changes the game entirely.

Sidling up to an empty space at the bar, enough to give Corrie a comfortable wide berth, he slides onto a bar stool, and waits for the 'tender to take his order. Blue eyes flicker to Emily and Alex, and then away.

-

Emily laughs again and shakes her head, "So not fair..", is given with full agreement with Alex. "At one point, you'd think I'd actually learn.."

The little shifter is more than comfortable in that amused, self-deprecating manner. She's 'at home in her skin', as it were, and can really see the humour in her own foibles. In some cases, she absolutely revels in them; particularly if it gives her a good story.

Corrie's presence is, for the time being, merely a blip on the radar; yet another patron in the Bass Cafe (which is really a fish bar..) this evening. As for Aidan — his entrance, too, gets a notice, her brows rising if only for the.. yumminess factor. It isn't as if she's alone in 'checking the new arrival out', as it were. Still, so very out of her league, and her attention comes quickly and easily around once more to her friend.

"Assuming, of course, that you and he are in the same place at the same time.. for any length of time — when do you think.. everything will be coming together?" After all, it's taken close to a decade, from everything Emily's heard, for the pair to actually acknowledge and become engaged. "And if you don't want to tell, I think I'll sit and pout, because I'm sure everyone else has asked and has gotten some sort of answer." She just hasn't seen her friend often enough, particularly over a pint, in order to just.. chat.

-

At this moment, the bartender on duty is Bob, not Charlie. Indeed, Charlie is with the absent Dr. Watson. Debriefing him after his trip to Egypt. (Translation: Tearing a strip off him for breaking protocol and defying a direct order — even if it was given much earlier — that said he was not to go off alone any more.) Still, Bob knows the score. The lab tech gets watered down lager. Poor luv.

Alex, who drinks much more slowly than her younger companion, gets the unadulterated stuff, however.

She laughs at Emily's question, however. "Oh, I have no idea," she admits. She glances at her ring. "It took me how many years to get this? Knowing Charlie, it could take another ten for us to actually set a date." Though, really, she hopes not. "One of these days, I'll paste a calendar to the dart board and have him pitch at it. See where it lands."

It's one solution, anyway.

Still, her eyes track the new arrival to the bar, as they have everyone that's entered, this evening — the redhead further along included. Habit, really. After all, she's effectively Charlie's eyes and ears here, tonight. ("Don't let them burn the place down," were his exact words. "Those rods are worth something, you know.")

-

Having turned in time to just miss Aidan's entrance, there is no dropping the mug tonight. Thankfully, because she still really does owe the bar money to replace it. It's a silly thing, she knows, because all pubs keep money aside for issues like broken mugs but it was her own fault.

Taking another glance around the bar, she spots Aidan and mutters, "Bloody hell." At least that's what she utters outwardly. Inwardly it's more of an 'oh fuck' moment.

Glancing at her pint, she makes a face. Corrie can't exactly down the drink and run off before she's noticed. Tipping the mug up she takes a rather large gulp before setting it atop the bar and making a beeline for the door.

With any luck, she'll be able to slip right out before his attention wanders from the two women and from other places within the bar.

-

The order for scotch is placed, and Aidan takes a careful, casual look around. Nothing out of the ordinary really, just the typical patron scanning the crowd. As his eyes complete their circuit, he notices Corrie again - not that he ever really stopped noticing her - and slides off the stool with an easy, almost feline grace. He's not moving any more quickly than a human would, as he easily slips into her path with a friendly, upward curve of his lips.

"Kavanaugh, are you leaving without even saying hello? I thought we were past this."

Beat.

"You know I won't bite." The unspoken final word, you hangs in the air, fluttering just out of reach.

Aidan gives a nod to the abandoned drink on the bar, "At least stay and finish your drink." Honestly, there's nothing threatening, or even lascivious in Aidan's manner or mein, he's completely relaxed and open, totally cordial.

-

Emily knows her beer is watered down; hard to miss when, in comparison, she catches a buzz in another pub after a single pint. Still, there's something endearing in it, in a weird sort of way, which prevents any real insult from happening. While Charlie isn't old enough to be her father, there is something of a fondness for the older gent. (As well as a healthy respect, and a little fear.. both of which goes a long way!)

The shifter laughs again at the comment regarding darts, and shakes her head, ducking it in and lowering her voice. "Then make sure Paddy's the one with the dart in hand if you want it before another decade passes." She pauses, quirking her head, brown eyes gleaming in the shared amusement, "Though Dr. Watson isn't so bad either." At darts.

At the mention of his name, Emily doesn't have to wonder where the man is; debriefing is something that happens on a regular basis, and his started before she left the office for the evening.

And will likely continue until one or all of them are hoarse…

Aidan's progress towards the bar is certainly noticed, and of course isn't in their immediate direction; not that Emily is trawling. He's just.. interesting.

Okay, hot..

And not one sign, not one signal.. no klaxons, alarms.. or even a whisper rises up the spine of the shifter in his presence. The beer, the laughter, the conversation all effectively serve as a mask to the dulled ability to discern the presence of a vampire.

Corrie's attempt to depart before.. oh, hell.. he must know her… the man catches her is also noted, but there's nothing behind it to mark it as anything but.. simply what it appears.

And Emily has no idea.

Ah well.

"I'll print one off the 'net tomorrow for you.. and sneak it in."

-

Alexandra grins at Emily. "Paddy. Good idea." The Irishman can beat her at darts; just not at billiards. "I can tell him which square to hit." He'd be good enough to do it, too. And he'd enjoy it thoroughly, if it yanked Charlie's chain.

Her gaze follows Emily's and she has to smile. She knows the lab tech. Quiet and unassuming as many think she is, Alex knows darn well that the girl is unfailingly cheerful and, frankly, an incurable flirt. To be sure, the young man entering is an attractive site. But he's not Alex's type.

"Fancy the view?" she asks her friend amiably, now, though her eyes scoot past Aidan to Corrie's subtle discomfort… which causes a faint arching of one blond brow.

-

"Mr. Boyle," Corrie offers in the most drab, business-like voice. There's something behind her eyes. A twinkle? Something beyond the boring demeanor she's presenting. "I'm afraid I simply didn't see you there."

Liar.

"Oh, I couldn't possibly finish my drink. It's past my time to turn in." It's still extremely early for her usual nights, but it's all part of the 'boring' shtick she's presenting tonight. "I thought I'd go home and read the new novel by Celia Collins." Again. "Or wash my hair." If she had glasses, she'd be sliding them up her nose now to play up the role of 'boring spinster'.

The problem is that:

a) Corrie is not unaware of Aidan's looks or his charm, and

b) she wants to rail at him for ruining yet another night at this pub.

Though really, she's starting to think that this particular pub just happens to make for troublesome evenings for her.

-

Aidan considers the witch for a singularly long moment. Crystal blue eyes move slowly, over her, from the roots of her hair, all the way down to the toes of her shoes and back up again. There's no mistaking the suggestiveness or appreciation behind the look, it's as though his eyes are hands and are very slowly peeling away every layer of clothes she's wearing; a whole new meaning assigned to 'undressing someone with one's eyes.' His gaze returns to her face and he licks his lips. It would be so, so easy to tip the scales … but he doesn't.

"My apologies for keeping you, Miss Kavanaugh." Pressing his hands together, Aidan gives her a partial bow, lowering his shoulders, but looking up at her from beneath long, dark lashes. "Enjoy your reading, I've heard nothing but good things about the novel."

Straightening up, Aidan's mouth quirks up in a broad half-smile that flashes his dimples. "Though, honestly, I do think that the male lead is a disappointing buffoon and should have been drowned at birth. Celia disagrees. Obviously."

Another beat.

"Do have a good night." With that Aidan turns away from the witch, returning to his seat at the bar to claim his waiting scotch.

-

If Emily could get away with it in the pub, she'd whistle in prelude to her response to Alex. Oh, the other woman certainly does know her.. and therefore understands the single, potentially cryptic answer given with a twisting around and back again, and broad grin —

"Crackers." The shifter wouldn't toss him out of bed for eating crackers! (Not that she has a revolving bedroom door.. because she doesn't. Talks a good game, sure…)

The return of attention to her friend doesn't necessarily take her out of her people-watching mode, or rather, hot guy mode, but it's not all encompassing and consuming either. A balance is easy for her.

Her voice cants a bit lower again, "Of course.. pretty red-heads trump brunettes." In the next breath, "I was thinking of colouring it.." She scrunches up her nose in consideration and shakes her head, "..but I don't think red would do it for me.. or even much lighter." Brown eyes.

"And you.. what about hair styles.." And it's back to wedding talk— never too early. Particularly over a pint and no men around. At least none that she knows.. even if her gaze keeps flickering back to that image.. (Aidan..)

-

Crackers. Alex laughs right out loud at that. She knows her friend. She knows what 'crackers' means. And she grins in empathy.

Hey. Just because she's engaged doesn't mean she can't look.

In any case, her gaze doesn't at all linger on Aidan. Rather, she returns her attention to her restless friend. "I wouldn't change, were I you," she smiles. "Contrary to popular belief blondes do not necessarily have more fun. And red heads are come-and-go." Her eyes twinkle some at that. She's not really that serious.

Taking another swig, she holds the mouthful for a moment, enjoying the nutty flavour before swallowing, considering Emily's question. She shrugs, now. "Don't know. I'm considering growing my hair out so I can put it up properly." A beat. More laughter. "I suppose it will partly depend on the dress."

-

The look freezes Corrie completely. How could it not freeze a woman? She can feel the heat creeping up to her face and she looks away, quickly clearing her throat.

There's a slight step forward as though she's about to hurry to the door again, when she turns around and just stares at him.

"You've… read it?" Beat. "I've already read it, but I generally read her novels a few times." She, takes a deep breath and nods. "I don't know. I wouldn't call the poor man a buffoon, but I do think he was a much weaker character than the previous hero."

There's no move to retrieve her pint, she just slides onto the stool next to Aidan and continues, "Though I do think that the growth of the heroine was absolutely amazing. Almost as though the author was there suffering through the struggles and plights of the time effecting women of that period."

He had to go and choose the one conversation that would break that whole 'boring' challenge.

"Bloody hell. Now you've gone and won that challenge too," she mutters under her breath.

-

Aidan quirks a brow as Corrie follows him and slides up on the stool beside his. That is unexpected. Still, it puts him back in the vicinity of the little shifter, and gives him an excuse to listen in on that conversation while seemingly not to do so. If he was worried about such things, he'd think that discussing a romance novel would be quite emasculating, but that's not something that Aidan worries about.

"Yes, I've read it. Celia is a friend. She likes to ask for my opinion. She doesn't like my opinion, but she still insists on asking for it."

He picks up his scotch and takes a sip, both listenting to the two women at the bar and considering his next words. "I suppose there was growth, if you consider her playing off two suitors against one another and then choosing a third to be growth."

Beat.

A lift of brows and a bemused smile, "What challenge?" Though he has a very good idea of what she's talking about.

-

"No, it depends upon how long your hair gets between now and then." 'Then' being a nebulous, unknown time in the future. Emily grins slyly, "You could be Rapunzel by then, and have french braid plaits down your back.. or circling your head a few times around." She likes to tease, but honestly, the younger woman thinks it's cute. They're a perfect couple, even if it took Charlie forever to actually acknowledge it. There'd be no way in heaven or hell, however, that Emily'd tease Charlie.. *ahem* Mr. Mesner about it, though…

Emily takes hold of her lightly coloured glass of beer and takes a sip of it, ducking her head as she looks over for probably will be the last time for her. After the hungry look the man gave the red head.. she's not got a chance with someone like him. (Not that she actually thought so.. nor did she expect him to chat the two up.. but she could always dream.)

"Ah well.." is said softly.

"Went out with Wade the other night." It's a light, conversational tone Emily takes. "He's.." the word is searched for before she finishes, her head bobbing slowly, "..nice."

-

Alex actually has to laugh again at Emily's take on things. Worst part? She can't argue. "I could," she concedes. "Except I'd have it cut several times before it got quite that long." Her blue eyes dance. It's still an amusing thought. And, tragically, also so, so true…

Once more, following Em's gaze, she glances toward Aidan and the red head. The look he gives the other woman is certainly intense. Alex's eyes flick to Bob, who meets her gaze long enough for her to flick that same gaze to Aidan and back. It's a subtle message to the barkeep: Keep an eye on that situation. Just in case.

Her attention then returns to Emily and her head cants. "He's nice enough," she agrees, having worked with him often enough to take his measure. She smiles curiously. "I didn't realize he was your type."

-

"I think she worries about the opinions of others, though honestly, what author doesn't? That's their life's work." Oh, Corrie, if you only knew how odd that is to be saying about Celia Collins.

"It was personal growth. On the one hand, she had the proverbial white knight type. On the other hand, the rakish black sheep. Is it any wonder she chose the third man simply because he embodied both of those qualities?" She waits a tick, then orders herself a glass of tonic water.

"The challenge to remain absolutely boring for the foreseeable future. Hardly my fault you're the only other person I know that's read the book."

-

"She shouldn't," Aidan comments as though it is a simple matter as that. It's easy for him to say, particularly when he knows that Celia doesn't truly care at all about the reception of humans and their opinions on her books insofar as they sell and make her a tidy profit to squirrel away and live on for a generation or two. "She's evidently good at what she does, or she wouldn't be published."

Beat.

"On second thought, she's evidently good at what she does, does not base her audience on illiterate hormonal teenagers and brain damaged adults with no life experience who wouldn't know a plot if it jumped up and bit them on their collective arses. And for that she receives accolades and rewards." Aidan is clearly more informed, or more broadly read than he might lead one to believe; also strongly opinionated which shouldn't come as a surprise.

"Because your strong heroine was supposed to be chaste and hold fast to her ideals, and she dropped her knickers for the first sign of a smile from Monsieur Phillipe. You expected it from her sister, but not from her."

Aidan takes a drink of his scotch and again his brows rise. "I never challenged …"

Beat, and then there's that low, rumbling laugh that's damn near close to genuine if it isn't truly so. It brightens his eyes a bit, "Suppose that I did, then, didn't I?"

He's been keeping half an ear to the two women, and half an eye as well, and Aidan didn't miss the subtle exchange between the bartender and the blonde. It's amusing; seems that Sean's friends also suffer from the same White Knight Complex as Sean does.

Taking another sip of his scotch, he lets curiosity lead, and his gaze flickers briefly over to the women - or more specifically to Emily who keeps glancing his way. There's just a beat while he catches her gaze, another while he holds it, and then turns back to Corrie.

-

"Well, just in case you wanted a bit of freedom in your choice of styles," Emily puts the free hand out in gesture, "there you are. And long does cover a multitude of sins.. including that ever dreadful 'bad hair day'.."

She's done ogling, or what she'd insist are simply subtle glances towards the oh-so-not-normal-patron-of-Charlies'. He's caught up in a conversation, and she knows enough to simply.. cut losses. (As if there had been a victory? Oh, yes there is! A catching of the eye! YES!) But not yet.

The topic drifts back to Wade, though it is her fault. She did bring him up..

"Yeah.." the word is drawn out. "Nice enough. A little bit.." she smiles lopsidedly and allows for a little bit of a tilt to the side, "off.." Still. "As for him being my type?" Emily's brows rise and she snorts softly in amusement. "Walking, talking.. can carry a conversation." She leans forward, amusement telling in her brown eyes, "High standards and I have had a parting of the ways, if only for a bit." She takes her drink and takes a sip from it once she leans back, her brows rising meaningfully, "But I'm not so desperate as to go on a double with Connie. Not yet in the mood for being a soak-off date for some bloke in the same position."

-

Alex chuckles once more with a certain amount of empathy for the younger woman. She, herself, has never been that desperate — not because she's had such an abundance of suitors in her life, but rather because she's been hung up on the same one for years, now. Still… there were days she can still recall. "No one should ever be so desperate as to go on a double with Connie," she laughs lightly.

She turns on her stool, now, leaning back against the bar and surveying her fiance's demesne. The dark haired fellow and the red head aren't the only other patrons here, after all.

Her fingers wrap lightly around the handle of her mug, and she lifts it to take a pull.

The action at the pool table gives her a bit of a smile. The dart boards are almost totally ignored. There's a small party in the far corner, but they're largely keeping to themselves — aside from the occasional roar of laughter and flirtation with the waitstaff.

-

"Evidently?" Corrie laughs lightly. "She actually is good at what she does. No one quite captures the history of that era as well as she does." Clearing her throat a little, she shrugs. It's not as though all she does is read those sorts of novels. She does like quite a bit of different literature, she just happens to like Celia Collins.

"Oh, please. If the heroine was completely chaste throughout the entire book, it would be droll." There's a strange look on her face though, and she nods. "Beyond which if you happen to read between the lines it wasnt't just the first sign of a smile. There was a bit of familiar history between them."

When he starts to imply that he never did challenge her, she just waits for it. The tonic water is placed in front of her, and she takes a sip from it to hide the grin when he finally realizes that he did.

She can't help but follow his gaze when it drifts toward the two women. Rolling her eyes, she waits. Then she leans in to whisper, "Just bear in mind what Dr. Watson told you, yeah? Don't go looking for trouble."

-

Aidan smirks and swivels on the barstool, drink held in one hand, one elbow leaned on the bar as he more fully faces Corrie. It's more than that actually, there's a lot to be said for body language, and the vampire's is certainly open and inviting … then again, it's seldom that Aidan's isn't so when there's a pretty face involved, and something holding his interest. "You sound like a … what's the term …" His free hand snaps fingers and Aidan adds in a sing-song, "Fan girl."

He takes another drink and then asks, quite deadpan, "Ah, you read them for the smutty bits, then?"

Aidan mirrors Corrie's lean, taking it that extra length by encroaching well upon her personal space. Their knees are almost touching and it's a true feat of balance and grace that keeps him on the stool and not in the witch's lap. His voice is as low as hers, maybe lower, "I don't look for trouble. It finds me." The smile Aidan aims at her is both teasing and suggestive, crinkling his eyes at the corners. He taps her knee, "Case in point."

There's the temptation to look back at the shifter, because she's hard to ignore with that resemblance hanging over his head the way it does, but for the moment, he restrains.

-

Emily cranes her neck, while Alex' attention is elsewhere and slouches back down when she truly registers the loss. Game over.

Cradling her 'near beer' in two hands, she chirps, "Let's play a round," and slides off the barchair. "I won't even whinge if you beat me horribly." A free hand is pulled from its glass-holding duties, and she straightens up and makes the sign of an 'x' across her chest. "Hope to die.. stick a needle and all that." She lowers her voice, "B'sides. I want to get at least decent enough that I'm not laughed at by Paddy.. not that he's mean, but it's hard!" She's just a lass

-

Alex flashes Emily a grin. Paddy, she knows, would take the mickey out of the poor shifter just because he could. "Oh, sure," she agrees easily enough. "I could teach you a trick shot or two… but, I don't suppose that'd really improve your overall game." She chuckles a little at that.

Emily isn't a bad player… but she's no pro, by any stretch. And she's certainly no table shark.

The doctor pushes herself off her stool and moves toward one of the empty tables and starts to set up the balls.

-

Corrie loathes those two words, and she wrinkles her nose up in distaste. "I enjoy her work, but I'm hardly as bad as a fan girl, I should think." She's not running around and crying over the heroes of the novels, or finding need to defend the work if someone else takes issue with it. "I simply appreciate the level of detail she uses to draw readers into the story. I read quite a bit, but I rarely feel as though I'm right there. With Celia's works, I do. Which is why I believe the Mardi Gras party will do wonders to sell this particular piece here in London."

Ever the professional.

Until he mentions smutty bits.

A blush quickly blazes up her cheeks and she clears her throat again, turning to sip at the tonic water.

"No, but they wouldn't be period romance without them. If I wanted smutty bits there are plenty of other books out there that provide solely that."

Things are fine until he winds up in her personal space. There's a tensing, though it's quite a great deal less than what it once was — it's still there. She relaxes when all he does is tap her knee, and she laughs. "I suppose I've been called worse, though I could also say the same thing. Trouble always seems to find me." Case in point, she came here to avoid him, and he found her regardless. If she weren't already aware that he's been here before to look for Sean, she'd start to think he was stalking her.

-

The blush makes Aidan laugh, and he has to push the teasing a bit more. "I suppose that you've read those as well?" He's refusing, on general principal, to discuss anything remotely relating to business tonight, and the Mardi Gras book signing party falls squarely into that category.

The tensing does not go unnoticed, lessened though it may be. Nor does it go unremarked. "Really, Corrie?" It's two parts bemusement and one part exasperation. It's all that he says however, as he straightens up and takes another sip from his glass of scotch.

His gaze flitters again, past the witch to watch the two women moving towards the snooker table. Aidan's mind can't help but play compare-contrast until he gives himself a mental shake and turns back to Corrie, with a lazy, languid grin. "What're you doin' here tonight anyway?" More relaxed, the brogue curling through a bit more noticeably.

-

"Uh huh.." Emily chuckles and makes to follow Alex to the back table. "It'll improve it. Really. I'm a quick study, you know that," is given in defense, her tones theatrically wounded. A couple more paces are taken before the complaint rises, "So not fair.."

The urge is decidedly there to turn around and scan the room before her, and for that flicker of a heartbeat, she pauses to do so.. and with a quick twist, checks it.. checks all the patrons. A free hand rises to unconsciously run it through her hair, under her hair, rubbing so briefly at the back of her neck as she lifts her mane from her shoulders for a bit of lift and air. A scowl briefly crosses her face, but it's there and gone in a breath, leaving behind the disgustingly cheerful shifter as she turns back around and approaches. Reaching for a pool cue, Emily pulls it off the wall rack with a tug, and goes for some blue chalk to rub the end.

"This time, I'll .." Emily pauses as she comes up to the table, "… let you break."

-

Alex sets the rack around the balls and picks it up once the balls are properly corralled. She glances over as Emily approaches, in time to watch her rub the back of her neck. This causes her to cant her own head curiously and make a brief scan of the patrons once more. No one new's come in since the tall charmer by the bar. And most of the others, she recognizes as regulars and semi-regulars. Indeed, Aidan and Corrie are probably the only two in the place Alex hasn't really noticed before.

She regards them for a moment. She'll certainly notice them in the future.

However, as Emily comes to the table smiling, Alex chuckles softly and leaves her internal query unspoken. Instead, she picks up one of the cues and rubs the square of chalk on the end. Then, circling the table, she goes for the break.

Regulars, nearby, give the pair casual interest. Anyone that knows how Alex plays knows that there are pointers to be had when she's not fleecing an arrogant interloper. She just can't help it.

-

"Like I've said, Aidan, there's plenty you don't know about me." Corrie shrugs her shoulders slightly, refusing to let him get a rise out of her tonight. She's supposed to be relaxing.

"Really what?" Is he talking about the tensing? She blinks at him, then smiles. "Sorry. Like I mentioned the other night," sotted though she was, "You happen to make me nervous."

Curiously she watches his gaze shift beyond her, and she peeks over her shoulder to note the two women on the move. "Aidan…" She's already reminded him what Sean mentioned, so she just lets her words stop at that. Though she does ask, "Do you know them?"

-

There are so, so many comments Aidan could make to her, and the vampire considers each and every one of them, discards and reconsiders in the spacing of a few heart beats. He settles on, "But there is so much I do know about you." Leaving it at that, he drains the scotch glass and signals to the bar tender that he'd like another.

Turning half away from her, the vampire makes another cursory observation of the pub. He can't help it, he doesn't ever let his guard down. Even when it might seem as though he has.

Blue eyes flicker once again to Emily and her friend, and Aidan gives a brief shake of his head. "No, not at all. She just reminds me of someone." He doesn't say which she he is referring to.

-

Emily leans on the cue with one hand, and takes sips of her beer until it's near the bottom before she puts the glass down and returns to hanging on the wooden 'staff'. Watching the break, she groans, though it's all with good humour. A couple of the balls are perilously close to going in.. but miss. The smile relights upon her face as she walks towards the edge of the table that best suits her for a shot.

"If I had broken.." Emily pauses, making sure that's the correct .. tense and such.. and continues, "you would have emptied the table in the next five minutes."

Leaning over, she considers for a long moment before placing her hand on the table, then the cue.. and draws back.. and strikes the white. The cue ball strikes a solid, and it's a badly aimed shot, missing the corner pocket..

A sigh exits from the shifter, and she drops her head in embarrassment. "I should have gotten that.."

-

Alex laughs at Emily's reasoning. Again, she can't argue it… except that she's been known to 'throw' a shot or two just to give the other girl a chance.

She moves around the table and looks at the layout. Stripes are hers, obviously. "You probably should have," she agrees. "But you didn't line up properly or follow through." She lines up her shot, "Like this," and sinks it.

She then moves around to the next shot, though this one takes her close enough to Emily to drop her voice. "Something distract you?" Her brow arches in faint concern.

-

Corrie nearly chokes on the water when he says that. Face once more turning red, she sets her glass on the bar and turns to stare at him. Her words are very slow coming, but eventually she dips her head in a brief nod. "Yes…" Beat. "Yes… I suppose there is."

For now, she'll leave it at that.

His next comment receives a dry laugh. "Do you have that happening often? Dopplegangers of your past coming back to haunt you?" Beat. "Sorry, I honestly don't mean to tease. I've just been re-reading the journal."

It's her turn to glance around now, and she fusses with her hair while she does so, adjusting the mess of a ponytail so that the strand of hair tickling the back of her neck is no longer bothersome. "I don't suppose you've got another?"

-

Mission accomplished, Aidan grins lopsidedly. He really can't help it; he likes pulling reactions when he can. It's a perverse thrill, yes, but it is a thrill.

There's a moment of consternation at the witch's next words, and he tries to ponder them out as he accepts the new glass of scotch with a nod to the bartender. "No, I can't really say that I do," Aidan admits. "I haven't actually encountered any dopplegangers, just people with familial resemblances." That's not the whole truth, but Aidan's not about to go out and explain the uncanny resemblance that the little shifter shares with his not so popular - in Aidan's life - maker.

"Another?" Aidan drawls around the rim of his glass, brows raised. "Drink? Hand?" Now, he's just doing it on purpose.

His attention drifts again to the women at the snooker table, though it remains a passing, fleeting glance.

-

"Story of my life.." Emily bemoans theatrically, but it's near impossible to trust that she means it, what with the amused grin on her face. "I don't mind it here, now.. but if I see a hint of it on a performance evaluation?" She wiggles the pool cue mock-menacingly..

She takes pride in her work.

The little shifter moves around the table so as not to get into Alex' way. When her friend sinks the ball and comes along side her, she catches the question, out of earshot of most.. almost all in the bar. "Hmm?" Emily shakes her head, her brows creasing in momentary question, "No..?" She shakes her head again, this time more definitively.. "Nope. Just," here Emily retrieves her smile, "really bad at pool tonight, apparently." She lowers her voice, but her smile remains.. "New moon. Just sucks any ability right out of me." Might as well just dye her hair blonde.. but she's got enough sense not to go there..

"Just.. shoot." Emily's voice gets louder to the point of conversational once again. "I'll catch up." She offers immediately after, in a more sotto voice, but no less amused and self-deprecating, "Maybe."

-

Emily has nothing to worry about on her performance review. Alex has always respected the lab tech's work. It's always been well above par.

At least, she's nothing to worry about as long as she avoids the blonde jokes.

Still, Alex can accept the 'new moon' excuse. She's worked with enough shifters and werecreatures to know the truth of it. Thus, she chuckles warmly and gives a light nod. She sinks a couple more balls before 'throwing' a shot to give Em a chance.

Straightening, she grins. "So… going on a second date with Wade? Or hoping for something a little less 'odd'?"

-

"Journal," Corrie says with a shake of her head. Pointing to her own glass she's quick to note, "Tonic water. I did figure it'd be safer this way." Beat. "And I'm well aware as to how many hands you have."

Finishing off her 'safe' drink, she grins. "Ah, familial resemblances. Those do seem to be a thing with you." She may ask more about it later, but for now his very slight pause has said enough to satisfy her curiosity.

There's a beat while she pulls her thoughts back on track.

"Anyhow, I recalled that you had said you had several of Gwen's things, and I was just curious if that entailed another journal. She was quite the meticulous diary keeper. Very informative."

-

There's a soft burst of laughter at her response to his words. "Isn't my fault that you can't hold your liquor," Aidan points out. After all, he wasn't the one pouring shots down her throat; he might have taken a wee bit of advantage of the situation, depending on interpretation of events, but it couldn't be helped.

"There are so many things with me, Corrie, you can't begin to imagine them all," Aidan drawls. He places his glass on the bar and folds his arms across his chest. His attention tracks again to the snooker table, though he continues to speak to the witch at his side. "I might have a few more of her things." Beat. "If you ask nicely."

-

Emily watches the balls go in, one after another. There's an unconscious but still good natured pout coming to her face.. and she catches it before it becomes full on. Doesn't mean she doesn't offer up a mock complaint, "Okay, Minnesota Blonde..", followed by a laugh.

Tracking around the table, her eyes move across the table, looking for the shot. A soft whistle comes from the little shifter before she chuckles softly, "He's nice.. but I'm getting the idea that those snacks he carries around makes sure he doesn't waste away to nothing with all that nervous energy he's got." That's her take on the matter, anyway.

Straightening, Emily catches the 'date' comment and laughs, "Hey.. not a date. We had tea.. and it was very.. nice."

Nice..

"That was after we went to the Tower. I wanted to see what he thought of the place.." Her head cants, and her expression is.. meaningful. "He had the same impression you did." Leaning back over to look at the table, she continues, conversationally, "Stuffy, not really all that pleasant.."

Sight is caught of a potential shot, and she shifts her position in order to get to it. The cue is pulled back.. and the ball struck.

Center pocket!

"Yes.." is hissed, complete with an abbreviated arm 'pump'. Looking up at Alex, her brows rise, "I thought that perhaps he'd want to see it, as he was messing about in that accident the other month."

-

Isn't 'nice' usually the kiss of death on a date?

Alex rolls her eyes at the Minnesota Blonde comment. "Watch it, Steeplechase."

Still, she hears the 'report' beneath the casual words her companion speaks. She can't say she's surprised. Indeed, she simply leans on her cue stick, out of the way, watching Emily steady her shot, though she gives a light nod to what she says. "Lots of history at the Tower," she says lightly. "Most of it unpleasant. Small wonder anyone would feel that way."

Yes, the words are entirely meant for any potential 'audience' the pair might have… completely meaningless to their actual conversation.

She does another casual sweep of the bar, noting the conversing couple by the par in addition to the rest of the patrons. Habit. Her eyes are never still for long.

-

"I can hold my liquor perfectly fine." Beat. "Most of the time." Honestly, she just tends to drink more around him because of the nerves thing.

"I've no doubt that there many things, and most that I'm really not interested in knowing."

Corrie doesn't bother looking over at the snooker table again because it would just be weird for her to be staring at two women playing. She does blink though, and says, "I thought that was asking nicely."

Beat.

"Aidan, I should very much like to see these items. Please?"

-

The conversation that Aidan is overhearing means very little to him. He knows that that's not to say that what he's hearing isn't important, it simply isn't anything he can currently put into context or make sense out of. He can only imagine the sorts of power and creatures attracted to the tower due to its history, and really, the vampire has found little to no need to ever venture there. But …

Aidan gives her a suggestive grin, his words lilting, "Are you positive? I'm really quite intriguing."

The blonde is watching the room, too, Aidan notices and he files the information away. She's one of Sean's acquaintances, and that means she's worth watching and being careful around. Sean may be a sometimes distracted academic, but he's never struck Aidan as the sort to be complately unawares. Given his association with the Department - whatever his association may be - Aidan is sure that anyone else around him is 'in the know' to some degree.

Temporarily pulling his gaze from the women at the snooker table, Aidan gives his full attention back to Corrie. His smile is friendly, and he nods. "Yes, Corrie, you may see the other items."

-

See! She can be a super, undercover spy too!

Emily 'aws' at being called 'Steeplechase', though it's fair.. and fair game. (She'd beat any horse through those bushes any day!) Laughing soon after, she nods and begins to look for a second shot.

A brief, tightlipped smile comes, her head shaking unconsciously as she obviously doesn't find anything to her liking.. and looking up at Alex, tries to see if she can't follow the woman's gaze on the table. Perhaps to give her a clue as to the lay of the table?

Rats..

"We're going to go back, if only to hear some of the stories." Leaning across the table, she casts a glance sideways, up towards the front of the pub, and catches Aidan watching the table. There's something of a self-conscious smile that comes to her lips and she returns to the game at hand.

"Of course, I'll have to ask you or Dr. Watson if what they said was true, or exaggerated."

The shot still has to be taken, and pulling back the cue-stick, strikes the white ball. It *smacks* against another, and gives the pocket in question a wide berth.. much to her disappointment.

"Awww.. poo."

-

"Sounds like fun," Alex says in response to the idea of going back to the Tower to investigate. Indeed, she'll probably do some poking around of her own in the area. (Hey, if Sean gets to do it, so does she.)

She circles the table, now, to line up her own shot. Playing casually, she's careful not to sink more than a couple or three balls in succession, just so that the game is more of a game and less of a table sweep.

-

"Positive. I'd rather not delve too deeply into your psyche." Corrie's quite certain that learning certain things about Aidan will just scar her for life. "Besides, it would be in your best interests if I didn't know too much about you."

She considers her next words absolutely carefully, trying to decide the best course of action. She really wants access to Gwen's journals, and she knows he won't bring them by the restaurant. There's a nervous fiddling with a strand of hair, trying to force it back into place before she exhales a slow sigh.

"I don't suppose there's any possibility of seeing them this evening?"

-

Aidan rumbles with laughter. He really can't argue with the assessment that there are things she probably doesn't want to know about Aidan. "Most likely. Yes."

Leaning back against the bar, Aidan studies the witch for few moments. "You can," that slow, insidious drawl of words, the left corner of his mouth lifting up in a faint smirk, "But it would mean coming back to my flat."

-

Emily watches carefully at how her friend sets up the ball, finds the angle, and puts just the right amount of force behind the stick.. and exhales, her hands wrapped around the cue, her head peeking from the side as she waits her turn. "It's not as if I could actually find my way back without him." Shifters can't feel the magical lay lines. Brightening, the smile relights, "Unless you guys want to make it a foursome.." and as the suggestion begins, it ends, and she slouches back down, her eyes glittering in amusement as she shakes her head, "Maybe not such a good idea." Scrunching her brow, her voice lowers, "I think Mr. Mesner thinks Wade is a bit.. odd."

Of course, so does the rest of the world.

Once the balls are sunk and pity is taken upon her, Emily looks at the table, back at Alex, and back to the table again. "How about darts after this?" She can't resist a laugh after the suggestion; at least in darts she's got a chance?

Walking around the table, Emily shakes her head, and exhaling in a theatric sigh, looks up and around her environs once more. Hot man with red head still.. and the other blokes in the place are just a little on the older side. The Bass isn't known as a 'youth hangout' in the least.. which, of course, begs the question as to why a hunk like that would be in the pub. Bar. Whatever.

Ah well.. and her attention comes back to the table, looking at every conceivable angle, or at least she thinks so, before she sets up for a shot.. and misses.

"Okay.. even worse than usual.."

-

Alex laughs lightly at Emily's words. "Wade is a bit odd," she notes. Then, quickly, "Which doesn't mean he isn't a nice guy." After all, there are many that think Sean is bit 'odd'. And they're not wrong, either. She grins, however, at the idea of darts. "Could do," she says non-committally, eyes dancing nonetheless. She'll see how the evening stands at the end of this game.

From what she can see from a quick glance about the room, the couple at the bar are in danger of melting all the ice stored behind the bar, for all that the red head is trying to be at least marginally subtle about it. While the gentleman isn't indecent, he's clearly willing to take her up on whatever subtle (or not-so-subtle) offers she might make. Thus, Emily's lingering interest in him is somewhat amusing. "I have a feeling he's already spoken for," she says lightly, canting her head in Aidan's direction.

She watches Emily miss the shot and then chuckles softly. "Sorry," she says, genuinely apologetic.

"Remember: Focus and follow-through. Once you've lined it up, that's the key to a good shot."

She moves around the table now and sinks another ball or two, taking pity on her friend once more.

-

"Your… flat…" Corrie worries her teeth over her bottom lip as she says the words.

"I…"

Shouldn't go there. Really shouldn't go there. The journals though… the family history… Fingers tap atop the bar as she fusses with herself in her head. It's dangerous. You know it's dangerous. Yes, but what other choice is there if I want those books? Tap-tap-tap. You could run in and grab them then leave? That's likely the best idea.

"The night is early yet. Are you certain? If not, I can stop by tomorrow after I finish the arrangements with Miss Dae…"

-

The vampire rolls his shoulders in a shrug. "I'll be up for a great deal longer than you will, Kavanaugh. If you want to come by tonight and see them, that's perfectly fine with me." He takes another slow drink of his scotch, "If you want to wait until tomorrow, that's fine as well. I've had them all this time, they really aren't going anywhere."

Aidan is not applying any pressure to the situation. He's quickly figured out that the best way to handle the witch is to let her go wherever she wants to lead. As long as they reach the same place, he's fine with that approach. Also, the night is young and seeing how his 'find a necromancer' plan came up empty, his evening and night are fully open.

"If you do want to come by, I promise to be a complete gentleman." He waits a beat and gives her sultry smirk and a wink. "Unless you ask me to do otherwise."

-

There is no way that Emily will argue the fact that Wade is certainly.. different. She laughs and nods her head as she backs away from the table, allowing for Alex to come forward. "He is.. eccentric, to say the least." Pause, then, "But you know you won't starve to death when you're with him." Have snacks will travel!

If they don't get to darts, that's okay with her. It's a casual night out, and nothing saying that she can't turn in 'early'. Mixing business with pleasure; at least she's gotten a couple things passed on, as it were.

Twisting around, for the last time, she swears!, she sighs theatrically, but softly, "Yeah.. ah well. Next hunk I find, it'll be my luck he's gay."

Emily listens to the advice and shifts, watching the shots Alex makes. "Focus and follow through." She chuckles and shakes her head, "I'm raising the white flag on this one. Uncle.."

-

Again, Alex laughs. "You never know." She briefly considers asking Em if she'd like her to invite the 'hunk' at the bar over to stand beyond the shot — perhaps that will improve her aim? Then again, it likely won't. It'll likely just distract the little fox-shifter further. She does think Em's more than a little distracted tonight. Something about Aidan has certainly caught her attention. For a moment, Alex wonders… But lets that train of thought go for the moment.

Instead, she takes pity on her friend and sweeps the rest of the table.

-

"Tonight…" Corrie exhales slowly, tossing her hair over her shoulder. "Tonight works. I won't keep you long." After all, she's really only going to grab the journals — provided he lets her actually take them home.

"I've my car, shall I meet you there?"

There's a beat, and then she raises her brow at him.

"You know that won't happen. Gentleman it is."

-

"Kavanaugh, you are absolutely no fun, do you know that?" It's said with good-natured humor as Aidan grins at her.

Aidan holds up his glass of scotch, "As much as I'm not a stranger to women wanting me to get me alone as quickly as possible, considering that the more … entertaining avenues aren't where your interests lie, might I finish my drink first?"

-

Emily cants her voice lower, "Hello.. when was the last time someone who looked like that came here?" The teasing is good natured, laughter sounding in her tones. "And I know he's not quite your type.. but you have to admit.." While the bar owner is handsome in his own right, the 'age' thing does come in to play. At least for Emily..

With Alex turning her attention to the table, the shifter is free to lean on her stick and watch how she does it. She's given up on the handsome thing, and is gearing up for the catty remarks regarding his chosen 'date'. Sour grapes and all of that.

"You know," her voice is still low. "I've noticed that red-heads can be very pretty or really.." she wrinkles her nose, ".. unattractive."

-

Alex's brows rise at Em's observation. She sinks her last ball and straightens, smiling wryly with amusement and leaning on her cue for a moment. "True," she says lightly. "You wouldn't happen to be referring to the lady at the bar, now would you?" She glances back twoard the couple. "They make a cute couple, I think."

It's easy for her not to be catty. She's got a diamond on her finger already.

-

"Yes, I'm an absolute bore, remember?" Corrie rolls her eyes, then nods. "Go on then, finish your drink. I can wait."

She may not have plans to be up all evening, but waiting another few minutes really isn't going to kill her.

Deciding it's best just to finish her tonic water, she takes another sip from it and glances around. She notes, for the umpteenth time that one of the women is eyeing Aidan again. "Look, you've an obviously willing toy right there for the night. I'm sure she'd take care of your more… entertaining avenues. Kim would be far happier to toss her out in the morning, and you'd suffer less vitriol from her about it."

Beat.

"So I'll sweep in and get the journals, and you can swing back here. Twenty, possibly thirty minutes tops. Not even a dent in your evening, I'd wager."

-

"If you were a bore, I'd hardly spend so much time on you," Aidan tells her. If anything, her mood shifts are entertaining … except when they're not. He tosses back the remainder of the scotch in one swallow and sets the glass on the bar. Reaching into his back pocket, he pulls out his billfold and signals the bartender. "I'll cover all of it." Yes, Corrie will probably object, but that just means he can tell her that she can pick up the tab next time.

The corners of his mouth quirk just a little as he catches more of the women's conversation. He's used to hearing all sorts of cattiness, and the blonde's response he imagines would have given Corrie a stroke if she'd heard it.

It's only when Corrie points out the shifter that Aidan actually turns to take another look in that direction. He gives Emily a slight nod and a smile, simply because it's amusing to do so when he's well aware that she hasn't a clue of his identity, and then turns back to pay the tab.

There's a soft sigh of exhalation at Corrie's accusation? suggestion? "Maybe I want you to be stuck with me." Emily? So not happening. If there is one thing Aidan knows for bloody certain, it's that he won't be taking Emily home tonight … or any other night. He's not suicidal after all.

-

"Who? Me?" Innocence and light, right there, form the being of Emily Bennett. "Well, think about it. Have you ever seen an 'average' redhead? Look at the Duchess of York.." Yeesh.

Making a point of not looking back around, the little shifter moves into a fleeting sulk. "Real cute.." Cute couple?!As if she believes that?

Turning around so her back is to the rest of the room, Emily hangs her stick back onto the wall and carries the breaking triangle back to the table for the next patrons who will undoubtedly fill in when the pair of women step away. (Not that there are any hovering at the moment.) It's then that she catches the nod and smile.. which only irks her more. Still, the shifter doesn't linger in poor moods for more than a few heartbeats.

"I should probably go, though. Not sure what's planned for tomorrow. Maybe tea.. and snacks. Maybe a few more fun filled hours working out what Harry brought me.." Obviously not on the 'imperative list'. "I swear, if he sends one more email.."

-

The Duchess of York hasn't aged well, Alex must admit. But, at one time, she was actually a fair faced young thing. "It can happen," she says stoutly, nonetheless. She has to chuckle, nonetheless. Corrie doesn't seem the 'unattractive' sort to her.

"Harry is incapable of not sending annoying emails," Alex remarks dryly. His boss is worse, actually — that pompous, stuck up little snot that doesn't have a whit of real field experience, but still thinks Alex's practical theories are unworkable. Moron. Still, she doesn't say so. Professional courtesy, perhaps?

She nods, now, as Emily announces her intention to call it a night. "Not a bad idea," she agrees. "I'd like to give Charlie a ring before I turn in, tonight, anyway." More likely, she'll just stop over. One of these days, soon no doubt, she'll have to put her little house on the market. Hell, given how little time she spends there, she might as well.

-

"Tch. I'm quite obviously a bore. You just enjoy wasting your time." Corrie knows full well that it's a weak argument. She tried being boring, and that lasted all of what? Ten? Fifteen minutes? It simply makes him want to try harder.

"What? No, I've got i — fine. I'll cover drinks next time." Granted, she'll also bill them to him as a business expense, but she doesn't need to tell him that, not right now.

"Excuse me? Want to be stuck with me? I swear, Aidan, I'm hardly that awful that you've got to consider it being stuck with me. Really, how flattering you are tonight." Despite the words, she's actually chuckling. She'd rather be stuck with a charming sorcerer. Unfortunately for her, he doesn't happen to have ancestral property that she wants to get her hands on.

"I'll meet you there then, and you can decide what you want to do with your night, yeah?"

-

"I'm being the charming gentleman, remember?" Aidan reminds her. All right, so there wasn't anything about charming in that statement earlier, but the point still stands. He is being both a gentleman, and he's typically charming.

And modest.

"Considering that you're the one who considers it something of a pennance for your past life grievances to be around me, I think that stuck is the appropriate word." Aidan pauses and leaves a sizeable tip on the bar before returning his billfold to his backpocket. "Mind you, I said that you would be stuck with me, not the other way 'round."

He tilts his head to give her a teasing grin, "Do you remember the address? Seeing how you were so sotted the other night?"

-

"They're.. incessant. And he loves giving his pet theories a sounding.. which are always wrong. I mean, really.. just let me do my job. If I were anyone else, I'd have brought in complaints, accusing him of tainting the investigations." Emily shakes her head and a smile comes 'round soon enough, her tones actually echoing the expression. "But, I shan't. He may be an obnoxious git, but he's ours." She'd feel badly if something happened.. for a little while, at least.

Steps are taken away from the pool table; she's already settled with the drink, and there's nothing lingering of hers at the bar. It's a conscious effort to not look at the couple that are getting ready to depart. She catches a couple words now; yup.. they're a couple. Her words, however, carry on to her conversation with Alex, "Oh, just stop in. Sure he'll be awake. Or, if he's not, he will be." Her voice lowers, "Not as if he'll turn you away because of the hour."

-

Alex chuckles at that, as well. "No, I don't suppose he will." Charlie certainly wouldn't turn her away because of the hour. Truth be told, she just likes the chance to spend the late evening curled up beside him. Days are always so hectic, and God knows Alex is horrible for working overtime in the labs. It's those regular 'dates' with Charlie that keep her on the straight-and-narrow, really. Out of the lab by 9 at the latest so she can have dinner by 10. Crazy, but that's her life.

"If Harry gets to be a problem, Em, let me know." It's a serious offer. "There are ways to get obnoxious gits to back off without completely alienating them."

Witness how well she handles the arrogant Dr. Rodrick Merriam. (There's a reason she keeps oranges on her desk.)

-

"Thank you then," Corrie says, adding a, "Most gallant sir, for taking care of my libations." Winking at Aidan, she laughs. "I've been around Celia far too long, I think."

Considering his question with a slight nod she sighs. "Of course I recall the address, Aidan." Beat. "Actually, not the address so much as the location. I did have to find my way home." She rolls her eyes at him. "I wasn't that sotted." At least not after a bottle of water, and some conversation.

-

Aidan pulls a face and groans, "Please do not spend too much time with Celia. I don't believe that I can handle two of you." He doesn't say whether he means two of Corrie or two of his rather overenthusiastic child, but does it really matter?

Her admission to sobriety pulls a look of surprise from the vampire. Not that she was sober - he knew that - but that she's at last admitting that she was sober. Aidan says nothing, however, merely gives her another one of those smug, knowing smiles of his that crinkles his eyes at the corner and motions toward the exit. "After you."

-

Emily really does think that Alex and Charlie are 'the perfect couple', even if their chosen professions makes things a little difficult at times. Each enduring the others' idiosyncracies, and in some cases, revelling in them— all while complaining about them.

All in good fun.

Now if she could find someone like that? Wade…? No. Just.. no.

Guess no settling down in her cards for a couple more years (never want to rush things like that anyway..).

And, it's Harry.. and she shakes her head. "I can handle him well enough. I just don't go overboard like I would with, well.. you. Or even Mr. Mesner, if he came in with something he needed looked at." Or Dr. Watson.. or even Wade.

She laughs softly and shakes her head, her brows rising as she makes her way to the bar, her departure slated to be soon after the 'cute couple' make theirs, "You didn't hear that, however.."

Words from the couple in front of her are caught, but they mean.. nothing to her. Names given, nothing.. and the protestations are getting.. eeeeeh.. just go and get a shag already! "I'll walk with you to the Tube? Or.." does Alex have to talk with Bob first? Who knows what the bartender's got..

-

Alex gives Emily a nod, fully intending to walk to the Tube together. But, as she hears the redhead call the man 'Aidan', she pauses. Her attention focusses on him for a span of heartbeats — enough, no doubt, for him to detect the faint rise in her pulse rate, since she's close enough, now. "Aidan…" she echoes softly, nearly silently.

Eyes track over him — dark hair, light eyes (she doesn't look into nearly close or long enough to really identify colour… just in case), fine clothes. He fits Sean's description of the vampire that's been 'helping' him with the Egypt thing. And it does occur to her that Sean just might bring the vampire here (for all that Charlie hates it when vampires enter his turf) to discuss whatever they need to discuss. After all, there's a better chance for Sean to survive here than on his own alone in his office.

Her hand drifts to her throat where a protective pendant hangs. "Actually," Alex says to Emily, now, "yeah. I'd love to walk with you to the tube. Would you mind hanging here, though, for just a couple of minutes? I do need to touch base with Bob before closing, but I think company on the walk would be brilliant."

-

"I happen to like Celia. She's great fun, I'll have you know, and one of the most brilliant romance novelists I've read in a long time." And Corrie's been reading those since her teen years. They're a great escape from daily life.

"Come now, don't be surprised as all that. It takes more than a few… whatever it was we were drinking… to keep me sotted for long."

Beat.

"I'll call if I get lost. I'll see you in a few."

-

Aidan bites the inside of his cheek to avoid starting his commentary on the tripe that is romance novels. He doesn't begrudge Celeste her way of making a living - it plays on the needs of the masses, in this case escapism - as much as his cooking and restuarant do. Aidan simply has little time or interest in such … unbelieveably fantastic ideals of romanticism.

It's the soft whisper of his name that pulls the vampire to a temporary halt. The shifter has not paid any attention to him at all, now that he's 'off the market,' Aidan supposes; the blonde with her, however, is a different matter. It's she who said the name, and though it takes a moment, it's easy to detect which woman has the elevated heart beat.

Sean, you have been talking. Not that Aidan expected anything less from the necromancer.

Aidan glances over and back briefly, his mouth turning up into a smile that is clearly amused, but also tinged with a bit of a respect. A brief inclination of his head is given, and then he turns back to catch up with the witch. Pressing his hand to the small of her back, her guides her toward the door, saying conversationally as they head out into the night, "If your sense of direction is that terrible, you can always just follow me …"

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