Originally Posted 21 Mar 2018, 10:02 by Kate Hagemeyer
Patches lay down in one of the beds surrounding the balefire, but sleep would not come to her. Was it that the fire was dimmed, or that the feeling of cold iron wouldn't leave her? She went upstairs to the Exhaust on her way to the garden for a smoke. There was still a bloodstain from Talus' arm on one of the tables.
Patches spun on her heel and left.
Heading down to the parking garage, she pulled out her cell phone and started composing a text message:
"Talus compromised. Nearly killed me. Can I see you tonight?"
She deleted it and started again:
"If you're up I can help you with th"
She closed the messaging app and got into her car.
Arriving home, she found a trail of water leading from the bathroom, up the stairs. Pitching her keys onto the counter, she lit a cigarette and grabbed a mop. Once upstairs she found Little One curled up in what must have been a self-made snowbank on the floor by the foot of the bed. Patches sighed, put some towels around the edges, and went back downstairs.
With wireless headphones on, she grabbed some paper and started sketching out schematics for a new idea, pausing occasionally to swipe left and right, or respond to a new match.
Within the hour her idea was on paper and she had someone to spend the night with. After a quick shower she headed out again.
Darren opened his door with one muscular arm leaning on the frame, giving him an opportunity to assess his guest before she could enter. Though not the most curvaceous, Patricia's choice of leggings, V-neck, and cropped jacket seemed to pass the test.
“Welcome," he offered, as he opened the door further and let her pass under his arm. She could feel his eyes on her as she took in his apartment: sports memorabilia, some action movie posters, an overstuffed couch and a big screen TV.
"Perfect," she said, half under her breath, before turning around to face him. "Pleasure to be making your acquaintance, luv," she smiled, laying on her old accent. "Did ya have anything particular in mind?"
"I, uh. I was wondering if you wanted anything to drink?" he asked, slightly thrown by her question.
"I'll take a beer if you've got one," she responded, settling herself onto the couch. Studying the room a bit closer, she asked after his sports career. Hearing the excitement in his voice at discussing the subject, Patches knew she'd found what she came for.
"You Americans sure like your body armour," she teased once he joined her on the couch.
"I'm Canadian—" he started to protest.
"North Americans. People who use 'football' wrong."
He deflated a little at that. Darren proceeded to find himself cut off and put down at every turn in the conversation thereafter, as Patches began to ravage his glamour. Finally he was left drained and glumly silent.
"Sorry it didn't work out between us," she said as she got up from the couch and headed for the door. From this angle she could see down the hall into a room she hadn't noticed before. Through its open door she caught a glimpse of what looked to be armour for a video game character, coated with primer but not yet painted.
She took a step toward the room to get a better look and saw the edge of a 3D printer next to a spray booth.
He had no roommates, she'd made sure of that.
But she thought she'd also made sure to target someone who wouldn't miss their inspiration.
She left, feeling far less satisfied than planned.