View Single Post

Aiden Mistel 1: A Fly In My Drink
  #2  
Old 05-07-2012, 09:56 PM
Naamah Naamah is offline
135
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 0
Unhappy Aiden Mistel 1: A Fly In My Drink

[[Thanks to Jay for the co-op work with Johnny.]]

It's a rainy night in New Haven.

The lilting call of a flute rises, echoes against the water-streaked windows, and floats into the second floor hall of the Yale University Art Gallery. The administration had organized a booze up -- erm, that is to say, an excuse to beg money from rich alumni -- wait, no, sorry, a small private exhibition for friends of the Arts and the University.

Aiden leans into his chair and lets the warmth of his punch cover him like a blanket. Some acquaintance or another had tipped him off to the party, and his uncle's name accompanying a case of Grey Goose easily opening the door for him. The woman next to him, Cheryl, is chatting about the terrible weather and how its been simply wrecking her plans to take her yacht out on a fishing trip.

And then, a sense in his brain itches. Its not a pleasant signal to him, but he shrugs it off. Probably some Unawakened kidlet, cleaning the trash up for work-study downstairs. Plenty of good, solid, uneventful reasons why--

Oh My God, Becky, look! Its Johnny Mercury!!

His eyes squeeze shut, and he downs the rest of his drink without a word.

Still - Aiden breathes out slowly - this wasnt the worst possible option. Maybe Johnny had a crush on some Yale grad eye-candy. Perhaps hed just been invited too, nothing to be alarmed about...

"AIDEN!" The hand slaps down on a shoulder, and there's Johnny, all smiles. The Aesir-kin froze. "Y'know," voice slurred slightly, as if he'd been drinking juuust a bit too much, "never did thank ya for that advice ya had, in investin' in that company 'r other, y'know, what wuzzit called again?"

"It was Instagram, Johnny." A forlorn smile draws on Aiden's lips, and he stands up to place an arm over his acquaintance. "You've overindulged, my friend."

A grin from the movie star. "Tha'ss right. Instagram, great advice, really 'preciate it." At the arm, Johnny shrugs it off and waves a hand expansively. "What? I'm not, trust me, I've drunk worse." And then he takes a step backwards, loses balance slightly, and pinwheels his arms to keep upright, before pitching forward and locking an arm around Aiden's shoulders. The actor blinks a few times. "Mebbe I should sit down..."

Aiden's smile never wavers, but his eyes glint with frustration. "Cheryl, I'm so very sorry, I'll catch up with you later." He puts his arm around Johnny's back, discreetly digging his nails into his side in payback. "There's a little alcove over this way, a touch more quiet. Won't you sit down with me there and let us catch up?"

Johnny is duly led away, not without one last call out of "Umberto, ya old dog! What a night we had in Chinatown that time, yeah?" leading to the man in question flushing hotly under the sudden gaze of his wife, before Aiden sequesters him in the alcove. He sits down heavily on a bench, and people left them alone. As soon as they have their privacy, Johnny leans back, and his voice becomes less booming, and a lot more sober. "Nice people, these, Mistel. They do know how to throw a party. Bit stuffy for my tastes."

"Its the afterparty you wait for. And you. You are a godsawful pain in my ass, Johnny." Aiden's voice doesnt raise, but his tone could frost over the Sahara. "My accounts finally got over the last escapade you got me into - the one I ended up having to bankroll, remember? My accountant is - well, she's just drinking recreationally now. The scarring from the Asp venom is almost faded away, and it's possible that Sunshine Sukiyaki might not kick me in the face next time she meets me. But like the fly in my drink, just as I come to sip, you bob up in my face."

True to form, Johnny never stops smiling, even as Aiden's chilly declamation washes over him. "Relax, Misty, this time around you're not expected to bankroll anything. I roped Hays into doing it this time." He shakes his head as he gestures expansively again. "No, this time, you're just being asked to help stop another scheme of the Other Side."

"You're missing my point. Deliberately." Aiden waves at a pair passing by them.. "You've got plenty of other su-- ahem, eager recruits ready and waiting to honor their heritage and fight the Good Fight for the world. And yet I'm the one with the personal invitation. Why did you come to me yourself?"

The passing couple gets a cheery, tipsy wave from Johnny as well, and then he looks back at Aiden. "Because we're two peas in a pod, we are!" he declares, grinning in that inimitable way of his. Then he sobers, "And because the Powers That Be knew if they sent you a letter saying 'Get to Vegas, we need your help with something,' you'd hop on a cruise ship, chuck your mobile over the side, stick your fingers in your ears and go 'I can't hear you la la la.'"

Johnny sucks the remainder of his drink out of his glass, squints into it as if to detect any remnant of liquor within, then goes on, "And then I'd get sent to go find you, and there'd be all manner of questions about how I snuck onto the boat in the first place, and a whole mess of problems, and you'd end up getting dragged to Vegas anyway. So, I cut the knot and came in person."

Aiden looks down at the back of his hands. Then up to the violin quartet. Then to the side, out into the rain. "You know what I asked for, last time."

Johnny raises an eyebrow at this. "Setting terms now?" he says. "You know it isn't given away freely. Hell, even with all They're having me do-- jetting all over the godsdamn world and delivering messages hither and yon-- I haven't gotten more than a drop."

There is a pause as the actor leans his head back and stares at the ceiling, fingers drumming on the back of the bench. "I'll pass the message along. It'd be up to Them. Meantime, it might be best if you just get to Vegas." He pauses, then adds, "If you decline, they'll just send someone else. And it'll probably be Solomon."

"Sol?" He rolls his eyes. "You are joking. That absolute twit. You... oh, right, Trickster tactic number one: playing on their ego. Right." He bites his tongue for a moment. "Fine. I'll go. But if I get splattered in who-knows-what kind of acidic venom again, or sliced up by another crazy woman with a scimitar, or whatever, either Asclepius or your Daddy is going to heal me up. No arguments, shake on it."

Johnny smiles. "Far as I know, there shouldn't be any venom-spitting going on, but then, they don't always give me all the details." He stuck out a hand. "Deal."

"And if you're bankrolling it, I expect first class seats."

"Of course you'll get first class! We take care of our own. There'll be a ticket waiting for you back at your place." After shaking hands, Johnny lurches to his feet, and the tipsiness routine comes back. "'s great seein' ya again, Aiden! Ser'ously, great seein' ya, we'll have to do lunch sometime, I know this great shawarma place we should go to sometime..." and then he's gone into the crowd, the occasional outburst following as he saw someone he knew, and then this too fades.

Aiden leans back, the hands over his face hiding the look of utter dismay crossing over them. He reaches out to pluck a flute of bubbly off a passing tray, tipped the entire draught down his throat, and exhales. Then he lifts up his cell phone.

Hey. Kerry. Sorry for the late call, Ill make it up to you. Do me a favor and cash in some of my points at the Bellagio, Im going to need a room. He paused, his lips turning into a twist. Put the bottle down. I heard you open it..