Everything's Taken Care Of
Roleplaying Log: Everything's Taken Care Of
Participants
IC Details
Synopsis:

Domino tries to make amends with Alison but it may be too little too late.

Other Characters Referenced: Warren Worthington, Deadpool
IC Date: September 30, 2019
IC Location: Warren Industries, NYC
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 01 Oct 2019 03:04
Rating & Warnings: R for some language, because Domino
NPC & GM Credits:
Associated Plots

Another job done. It isn't the first time that the results seemed bittersweet but Domino made good on her promise and nothing was physically set on fire so she's choosing to count it as a win. Due to extenuating circumstances (ie: Deadpool and drunken Warren) the secondary goal on her mind had to wait until the following day, taking her back into New York to the dangerously hollowed out remains of Worthington Tower.

It's a surprise that they'd let anyone near the place after the massive plant attack. Not that Neena's asking for permission. Word is that Alison is still in the area trying to pick up the pieces, which also works fine for the albino. She feels oddly comfortable being surrounded by ruin and destruction.

Despite this it is a strange feeling being inside of a building in the middle of a densely populated city and still being able to feel the wind in your hair and hear the traffic down below. It's kind of refreshing, really.

On the way inside she passes by a pigeon roosting within the hollowed out beams within the ceiling, prompting a slight frown from the merc. "Too soon, buddy."

Ali should be around here somewhere. Unlike yesterday she probably doesn't know that she's about to have a visitor.

***

Despite all that has recently happened, Worthington Tower reaches just as arrogantly high into the Manhattan skyline. It is an old building, as foundational as the rest of the venerable Financial District, and has seen much of the last century, witnessed upheavel, depressions, and wars, and survived far more. Invasions from extra-terrestrials, supernatural winters, or even Magneto — the building survived all of that. It shall survive some monstrous plant with the same, patient ease.

Perhaps unsurprisingly — no matter what happens in this strange world, the market carries on — the tower is populated with employees, some departments allowed in early when their floors are given structural and electrical green light by contractors. There is around-the-clock work going on, private crews attending to the damage, which, fortunately, seems to be largely superficial. The foundation stands solid, and any exterior work has long been deemed minor — no hazards anticipated here.

As this goes on, Alison Blaire works. She's been working since four a.m. this morning, when an emergency call from the Institute had her driving down to Westchester, all to discover their well reservoir is leaking, and it needs to be fixed — fast — before the nearby land folds deeper into a subterranean basement no one wants exposed. Much of her morning's work was working with the school's administration and trying to find a contractor that… won't dig as deeply as necessary.

After that, she found two hundred new emails forwarded via Kiff, who diligently marked them in order of priority. Either way, Alison needed to be back in Manhattan. The board was attempting to meet secretly.

She arrived in time to enter without invitation, sit herself down, and disrupt whatever was going on. They stumbled over parrotting the month's expenses, and avoiding the obvious elephant in the room. After that, she diverted to focus on restoration timelines, and focusing on repair. Not so much the building, but its employees. Many of them still demoralized and traumatized from the plant.

Hours later, there's a familiar voice, and Alison enters, leading a foreman in to point out the same damage on this floor, her words lofty with expectation he'll have this fixed within a week. With what they're paying him, he promises.

Her eyes glance on Domino, noticing her wordlessly, as she bids the man freedom to go do his job.

***

Alright, color the pale woman surprised. She didn't expect to see so much life still bustling about within the building. Power's operational to most parts. Office workers are bustling about. Some of the personal effects decorating the tables are pulling double-duty as paperweights against the wind. It's particularly odd how it all seems so -normal- despite knowing how much had happened.

It's also rather unfortunate to think that the building is managing better than its owner after both had suffered significant trauma. Buildings can always be replaced.

But, the black and urban camo-clad killer isn't here to check up on the progress of Worthington Industries. She seeks a different audience, and upon 'asking' she happens to receive. All it takes is a glance from Alison and Domino's shoulders are taking a set. It's showtime and she never had a script to rehearse.

There's plenty of matters on her mind. Lots of different things she could say. Probably a good dozen different angles of approach to get a conversation started. What this boils down to is that the first two words to slip out of the albino cover absolutely none of these options and still seem unintentionally hollow.

"Hey, Ali."

Is the other woman mad at Neena? Does she blame her for any of what happened? Is she upset about yesterday's antics? Does she even have the energy left to be angry? Dom's still undecided if she really wants to know but in an attempt to be respectful about it she leaves any such matters for Alison to initiate. If something needs to be said then it seems a fair bet that the songstress will give them appropriate life.

"I know you're busy as hell but I never had a chance to ask how you were holding up." Hooking a thumb over a shoulder, "If there's anything I can do for you…" Like maybe 'bring more coffee' or 'get lost.' The world is just full of possibilities today.

***

There is no outward reaction from Alison to hear Neena speak — and in that short, initial exchange, have it plainly revealed why the mercenary has returned to Worthington Tower. Looking for her.

Yesterday, in the presence of Deadpool's larger-than-life theatrics, Alison had slipped Neena a seething look, one that speak volumes, even if she never ended up saying anything. Whatever that was, it seems to have passed; Alison looks relaxed of any threat of a lingering temper, though it is hard to say what lurks past the skin-deep: she's got one hell of a poker face.

She waits there, not exactly friendly, but not exactly unfriendly — her body language no different how she was, moments ago, speaking to the contractor. Her blue eyes consider Domino a moment, before an alerting chime on her tablet pulls her concentration down. Some scheduling reminder, maybe, or another email come in.

Glancing back up, Alison's gaze half-hoods. "It's fine," she says, "as you can see. Business back on schedule."

Then she's asked if anything can be done for her —

Alison considers Domino again for a half-moment more, her eyes searching. If anyone personally knew Judge Carter Blaire, they would attest that in moments like these, she looks just like her father. "What is it you need, Neena? Something I can do?"

***

"What do -I- need?" Neena repeats, fingertips splayed against her sternum with a look of intermediate surprise.

-Did- she seek Alison out for her own reasons..?

No. Not entirely. Though it may have factored in. ..Probably factored in. Okay, it definitely played a part in the decision. Don't expect her to openly admit to it, however.

Her hand drops with a quick sigh only to come right back up to run through ragged black hair as she looks down at the floor for a few seconds.

(Get on with it, Thurman.)

"Okay, look. I haven't been fair to you since the first time we met in this building. I brushed you off outside the Institute. And I'm aware that my attitude has been pretty shit lately. Maybe Warren didn't want to hear it but you deserve to hear it too."

God, does she REALLY have to say it again..? She said it TWICE yesterday and the second time had been pretty universal, couldn't she just—

(Fuuuuuck…)

"I'm sorry."

And with the ripping of the psychological Band-Aid complete, it's all downhill from here.

"I want you to know that I'm around to help. Not because Warren had me on the payroll, but as a team."

(As a family.)

"And, yeah, I wanted to make sure that you're holding together." Or to offer Alison a convenient target if venting all of that pent-up emotion might help her make it through her day. Neena's acutely aware that there's only so many ways in which she can be useful in a situation like this. Being a verbal punching bag happens to be one of them.

***

Moving her tablet to her other arm, standing tall in her pristine white suit, expensive heels, and immaculate gold jewelry, Alison stands there, tall, polished, and untouchable. Silent on the tail of her question, a marching-count patience in her expression like she wholly expects a response —

— she duly receives.

And Alison listens, not unkindly, with no outward hostility, no expressive gestures of demurral or skepticism, no vindictive rolls of her eyes. She seems to professionally see this through with the same forbearance and attentiveness as she did her early-morning lecture on the Institute's leaking well water. Like just another task in her long day, she takes it in.

If there's any reaction, caught by particularly sharp eyes — it's the way her expression tightens ever so slightly, like turned violin strings, at the outward mention of Warren's name. Dangerous territory. Otherwise, she doesn't seem surprised to absorb any of it. On the contrary, Alison has a ease as if she were silently expecting something, and received it in spades.

But — there is no retaliation. No verbal barrage. Not even another outward manifestation of her slow-burn temper. There is simply… nothing, really, past a tired, but emotionally-manicured professionalism.

"Neena…" Alison begins, simply, with almost the shadow of a wan smile. "I've never expected anything out of you. You do you."

No anger, no disappointment — just someone who appears to have long given up. Maybe since the gun waved in Warren's office. Maybe their brief talk afterwards. Maybe just recently finding out what was said to Warren over the comm, during the last battle.

Alison answers with a shrug, clear as that. "Everything's taken care of. Nothing else I can do?"

***

It isn't the kind of response that Neena had been expecting. Perhaps not the one she had been seeking, either. It takes a while for the topic to make its return journey and when it does it only creates more questions rather than answering any of them.

Is this Alison's form of acceptance..? Or is it more that she's condemning the mercenary's behavior? Domino is no stranger to repressing one's feelings and memories and there is clearly -a whole lot of repression- happening with Alison. Has she given up on Neena? Had there been any hope to begin with?

Well. She tried to cross the decrepit bridge between them both. If there had been a chance of making a connection with the other X-Woman before it would seem that moment had passed a long time ago. Warren had gotten angry and Alison is simply choosing not to care.

She could almost snort at 'everything's taken care of,' though falling short of such an impulsive reaction she looks around the building and the state which it had been left in. Yeah, everything is -clearly- taken care of.

Just like Warren in his drunken stupor the other day.

"Right," comes the emotionally void word of response after some time. Alison wants to take care of it all by herself? "I'll leave you to it."

Warren still has Neena's number. If he ever comes back around then he knows how to reach her. Alison's got her own troubles to deal with, and Warren's troubles on top of them. Maybe no one had told Dom to leave but no one had made any call for her to stay, either. Maybe some time off would be for the best, at least until the dust has settled.

Knowing her luck, sticking around would end up getting someone -else- maimed. Or worse.

***

Whatever there may or may not be, Alison's got it locked down. That, or simply beneath all her work, there is a woman running on fumes, with no more emotional energy to spare anything or anyone.

In any way, she engages this with the same fix-or-file-for-later work ethic as everything else, whether it's Warren's affairs, Aegis' stakes, or running financial administrator for the Xavier Institute. Her tablet keeps firing with stray, tinny beeps, alerting new tasks every twenty to thirty seconds.

Alison, through this all, is a calm blue ocean. Looking sleepless, looking over-run, but fierce, composed, and ready in every way. She has a lot taken from her, but a helluva lot left to keep going on.

She is perceptive enough to perhaps notice something loaded in the way Domino looks around the still-under-construction floor in Worthington Tower, though the mercenary does not say. Either way, whether or not Alison notices, she doesn't rise to the potential bait: there's no argument in her to prove whether she has this handled or not. All she does is work at it.

And all she does is outright excuse any of Neena's requests to help — perhaps Alison doesn't trust her to it. At least there's no outward malice with any of it. Just… nothing, really.

To it all, just like that, Neena answers. Alison keeps eyes on the mercenary, but says nothing more. She steps aside to offer a way out; her tablet beeps again, and this time Alison's attention slants back down to it, touching and moving screens to see to her business.

It is that same absence of emotion, or whatever it is, that Alison does not make any attempt to watch Domino's exit, or offer any stray words in exchange.

In every sense of the word, Alison lets herself to be left to it.

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