2020-01-17 - No man's sidekick


Thea checks in on Oliver

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Fri Jan 17 19:12:24 2020
Location: Verdant

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One of the benefits of owning a club when you're a billionaire is that you can choose business plans based on personal preference rather than fiscal responsibility. And so, per Oliver's direction, Verdant now maintains a bloody mary and mimosa bar seven mornings a week. During these times it serves as restaurant rather than night club, with appropriate lighting and music at a volume that allows for some form of conversation, at least.

There was a respectable breakfast crowd this morning that has since dispersed, leaving a few scattered tables of diners and a cluster or two of drinkers at the upstairs bar.

Fast-forward to 11 AM. Now it's breakfast time for the late-rising owner. Rather than an omelet or a stack of pancakes from the kitchen, he's opted for a sampling of items from the bloody mary bar, which is expansive. And so he nibbles on pickled quail's eggs, bits of chorizo, olives, tiny cheese wedges, oysters, and a dizzying array of other garnishes-turned-fingerfoods. Ironically, his bloody mary has nothing in it but a straw.

His attire is less formal than usual today. A pale blue shirt, unbuttoned at the collar and with the cuffs turned back. Khaki slacks and leather boots that somehow look both sensible and expensive at the same time. There's a pin through one of his buttonholes; a tiny silver flower with petals made from emeralds. Alone, indulging in a tray of purloined snacks, he seems a lot more… normal than usual.

Despite her often late night (morning) exploits, Thea is usually an early riser. However, she's strolling into Verdant in the late morning, because certain routines must be maintained - most of the time. So she's already had a workout, and there's still that faint endorphin glow to her that so many high priced cosmetics try to replicate. Hair is a dark auburn, deep brown with just those flashes of a buried ember in the depths. It's loose, still faintly damp in waves, shaken back from her face as she heads for the bloody mary bar.

The blouse is black, cuffs that end just below the elbow, faintly pinstriped with a satiny black thread. Slacks are gray, flaring just enough to show a hint of those black boots on her feet - sensibly heeled. Eyes are barely lined and lashes enhanced, lips barely tinted with lip balm as they curve in a slightly predatory smirk.

Her stride lengthens and loosens, a hint more to the sway of hips as she closes in on the Bloody Mary Bar and the Man she'd been looking to come see. "Well good morning, Mister Queen." She says, silvery blue eyes looking him over, even as she smiles just a bit. A real smile, but not overly broad.

This must not be a first for Ollie, because he seems to have a method established for this particular meal. One by one, he uses cocktails skewers to assemble bites with two or three or even more items shishkabobed onto to them. Between skewers, he has a couple of oysters or other tidbits, then a hearty swallow of his cocktail. Not a bad way to spend a morning.

The voice is familiar, even before he turns away from his seat at the bar. "Harman," he greets her. "Had a feeling I'd be seeing you again. I thought I told you I wasn't looking for a sidekick?"

He's smiling too, although his is a bit wary. He's the one with the mask and the secrets, after all. Still, the laughter in his tone takes the sting out of his words, turning them from an insult into… well, something less insulting and closer to a joke, anyway.

She will lean against the bar with the shift of a hip and a placement of elbow against the top. "And I thought I told you I was no one's sidekick, Queen." She says with her own teasing tone, one eyebrow lifting as she looks at him. "I mean, I'm far too independent for that sort of thing." There's a smirk as she glances over the bar. "See, now this is a sensible brunch option."

She will reach over and snatch an olive from him, to pop into her mouth with a click of her teeth and a quick smile. "But I know I also told you I'd swing by to see how you were. Have to make sure those late nights aren't leaving you dragging, after all. Don't want you looking haggard before your time." She'll wink at him before she looks him over again, this time using her powers to check for injuries.

Oyster. Quail egg. (Separately). Sip. Then Oliver lets a slow breath out from between his teeth. "I'm none the worse for wear. A few bruises from my yoga class last night. Reminds me I'm still alive."

A longer pause, this time while he eyeballs Thea in return and waves for two more drinks. "I'm not used to people who have more than one way to check me out," he admits. Then the cocktails arrive and he cautions, "Careful. They're pretty spicy. Wouldn't want you getting in over your head." Another smile, a mild one to go with his vague warning.

Thea lifts an eyebrow at him. "Yoga, hmm? What's her name?" That's just pure teasing then, the grin curving just a little wicked, a hint of a dimple. "Alive is much better than the alternative. Hurting from yoga or not."

She laughs, reaching for the glass. "I'm sure you much prefer people who only admire the outward physique, and not all the trials and tribulations you suffered to get it." She means the injuries he's had along the way, scars that will likely linger a long time. "I've eaten spicy around the world. Pretty sure I can handle this." Fingers slide around the glass. "But you needn't worry. I'm an excellent swimmer, and I rarely get in over my head, like some." That's a playful shot about when they last saw each other.

She sips the cocktail, a soft murring sound as it slides down with that delicious taste. "Interesting pin. A gift from one of your many admiring ladies?"

"You could say that. It was my mother's." Oliver brushes a thumb against the little flower. "If you hadn't noticed, I'm a fan of the color green."

Another quail egg, but he seems to be slowing down. His next morsel is a wee little wheel of gouda, which he nibbles thoughtfully. "Another thing you may have noticed is that I go to a lot of trouble to make sure no one looks too closely at me. Sure, I take a women's volleyball team out on my yacht from time to time and I don't hate it when it happens, but it's just to give people something to see. Alibis can be hard to come by for people as visible as us. Better that no one thinks to ask in the first place."

"Very sweet. And I may have noticed something of the kind. Green is a good color for you, I think. Very dashing." She's not even being snarky or teasing, there's maybe a note of wistfulness in her voice, as she glances away a moment.

"Well, you can relax. I look that closely at a lot of people that I… intersect with, shall we say?" She laughs. "I do not take out a men's football team, or the like. Of course, double standards - even in today's day and age." There's another swallow of her drink, before she will snag some morsel of his for another nibble of food. "Visible as you are. People tend to forget me until I'm trotted out for more political and social duties. Which suits me well enough - I like to think I have my own life." There's a shrug.

"Must be nice," Ollie muses wistfully. "Never had one of those before. Makes me miss the island sometimes. Felt like which leaves I used to wipe with was the first decision I ever made for myself."

The crude joke hides something, and not particularly well. Frustration, maybe? Whatever it is, it gets crammed back down to wherever it came from. "Meetings, you know? I'm supposed to be at a meeting right now. My board members are probably furious. Joke's on them, I already read today's briefs and left my notes with my assistant, along with orders that she not hand them to the chairman until he stops asking her to call me. Petty, but he's a pompous little jerk who deserves it."

"A life of your own?" She asks, looking at him. "But you have other gifts people would envy. I don't mean just the money, either." A nod to the pin, indicating that bond between mother and son. "If you've looked into my father at all, you'll know his wife is not my mother." There's just that slight burn to her tone, that yearning for a woman who has been absent now for years, hard years.

"Parents can be too much, even if they only mean to be protective." She pauses, looking at him steadily with gray-silvery-blue eyes that are not exactly hazel or blue today. "Your parents could have sent you away to a minimalist boot camp, surrounded by strangers older than you, to be taught all kinds of self defense skills and …other things. An ocean away from everything you know." There's a touch of bitterness there. "It's made me who I am, but I am still not sure if that's a good thing, or not."

"Well, I'm all for serving pompous asses their just desserts. Meetings can be tedious. I avoid them at all costs. Another perk of my… independent life, I suppose."

"My parents are both gone," is the simple reply. "But I see what you mean. We were never very close, though. They let me do whatever I wanted, then when I got in enough trouble they'd send me to a new boarding school. Get kicked out, come home, do whatever I want, new boarding school. Throw money at the problem until it goes away, you know?"

Oliver pulls in a breath, then lets it out as a sigh. He fiddles with his glass, but the drink itself seems to have lost interest for him. "If I hadn't gotten lost, I'd be getting in trouble professionally instead of recreationally at this point. Our parents start us on a path whether they mean to or not, but we're the ones who decide what we become. You seem to be doing okay, at least by spoiled rich boy standards."

"I Am sorry to hear that. That must be very tough. I understand not being close with parents, though. Clearly, I am not terribly tight with mine. But still.. they're not there, and I think we always expect them to be." There's a lift and fall of shoulders in a shrug.

"Well, if my father hadn't decided he needed to clean up his image, I would not be anywhere near where I am today. Perhaps it would have been a less interesting life, but I am sure it would have had its charms. But then we might never have met, and what a lack that would have been." She smiles, and it's not even a snarky comment. "You're doing pretty okay too, at least from a supposedly spoiled political princess point of view."

"Yeah, good meeting you, too," Oliver lets out a low, rich chuckle. "I try," he acknowledges. "Despite my best efforts, it turns out that I'm not a bad CEO. The trick is to hire the very best people, then make them do everything for you."

It's an exaggeration. Truly, the company has done very well since he took over, though that's due more to savvy business decisions rather than any hard work on his part.

"We manage, right?" he continues. "We wake up, work out, and then do what we can to fix all of the broken things." From the way he says it, it's clear that he's talking about both day jobs and nighttime activities. "I'd be worried that you know more about me than any living person in this city, but I'm pretty good at starting rumors that make women look crazy and desperate."

"Delegation is a very refined skill. It's a good one for a CEO." The smile is faintly warmed. "I may have to look in investing. For a couple of reasons." Maybe the fact he's doing the whole vigilante thing makes her think he has good business acumen, or something.

"I do fix all the broken things. The biological ones, anyway." She lifts her eyebrows. "I don't know how far that rumor would get, personally. I've kept myself off the radar. No big celebrity romances, no big breakups, nothing too flashy or splashy. But like I said before, you've nothing to fear from me. Same boat, and all of that."

Ollie takes this in and nods while he thinks it over. "I'm glad to hear you're on the level. Don't take it personally that I try to keep you at a distance. I'm not good at having the two halves of me share time. I keep them separate for a reason. And neither of them is big on friends or connections."

It's a drab statement, to say the least. He finally returns his attention to his cocktail and drinks it down like a medicinal draft. "Ahhh. People die. They leave. They quit the fight. You know how it is."

"I hope you don't think this is me trying to close some distance. I'm here in a sort of.. " A hand gestures as she thinks, eyes looking down into her glass. "Medic capacity. There's few enough of those willing to do right around here, the least I can do is try to keep them all in top condition. There's no real reserve list when certain people are on the injured list."

She shrugs, before she will polish off her bloody mary, though she seems to enjoy it far more than a shot of medicine. "I know all too well how it is. Which is why I come to check on you. Think of me as the little random heart fairy in Zelda, coming to heal you up when you're low on hit points. I just show up, patch you up, and go on my way. You're a spotlight, Oliver, and what I do is best suited to low light and shadowy situations. You're worried about people finding out about the real you. I'm afraid of the same thing."

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