|The Lion and the Honey Badgers|
|What: Someone new comes to the Oblivion with a predatory air.|
It's a Friday night at the Oblivion. The place is packed to the gills with those sorcerous sorts off work for the weekend - or at least for the night. Zatanna Zatara is among them, at the bar. She's not on JLA monitor duty tonight, and a fruity drink with an umbrella in it sounded like just her speed after a busy week of research. She sips from a glass of something bright purple, dressed down in a pair of jeans, tank top that has Bugs Bunny on it, and a black leather jacket, with boots.
Friday night, and Tanya just got off work. She'd headed home, changed clothes, and decided to give that weird mystic bar another chance. It had been a long day of fighting an engine that didn't want to sit properly in its housing, only to discover it was a bolt that wasn't removed all the way causing the trouble. One of /those/ days. After making sure she had everything, she opened the portal to the bar and stepped through--only to stop just inside and blink in surprise. Lots of people. She should have expected it, she supposes, especially on a Friday night, but--yeah. Well, at least least she doesn't have to worry about anti-mutant bastards or the place suddenly getting robbed. Shoving her hands into the pockets of her jacket, she heads straight for the bar.
Jackie pushes his way through the door behind Tanya, already in midsentence, "-tellin' ya Paulie, I've been to every bar in the boroughs and I've never seen this one before, and you know me, I gotta try /everything/ at leas-" he blinks as he looks inside and then turns around to look back, presumably, for Paulie. The door swings open on... a view of cosmic space and no Paulie. Jackie shuts the door again quickly. "once?" he finishes in a confused tone. He turns to look back around at the room as a whole. Okaaaaaaay. He straightens his jacket and wipes the confusion from his expression as he heads for the bar. Where he goes, lights flicker ever so slightly, as if working harder. He needs a beer.
Tommy Bronson is here as well, though as usual is in his werecat form. He's still a lil weirded out of letting all these people see him in his human form. So is trying to keep those two individiuals seperate. Only Zee really knows that Tom is even a werecat shifter, since he hasn't really offered that information. He spins a lil on his barstool, checking out the weirdness of the bar and then returns to his drink. "Thanks for taking me out for drinks... this place makes my whole 'deal' seem a lot more... well, normal I suppose." Tommy whisker-grins, and sips the fruity drink that Zee has bought him. "Plus I can't really complain about being your companion for the evening."
Rain has decided to wander in. She has an illustrated guide to Pixies under one arm. Her week has been surprisingly free of goatings, newtings, tasings, angry well-endowed Asgardian chicks and that sort of thing. Though, she looks thoughtful, perhaps having her head in the clouds (Instead of up her behind, as some may argue). She takes a deep breath. She looks to the book and then up. It's like one of those magic eye pictures. At first, there's just blurs and then - people! People! It was people all along! She blinks, but smiles faintly and waves to a few of the folks she recognizes. She wears a simple shirt and jeans, though her shoes look pretty beat up. There's a polite smile as she passes Jackie. Her awkward is slowly evolving, but it's still awkward. It's just hippo in lolita dress versus hippo in a tutu awkward. "Oh." Yes. "Hi." There's Tanya and Zee and - now she freezes up, wondering who to greet or where to go or how people sort this out, really. Now she gets a numerical idea of people. Pletny of them. "Pardon." She'll make her way to the bar then, likely to find someone more socially adept to interact with.
Zatanna grins and clinks glasses with Tommy. "Anytime, Mittens. I need to get out of the house more. I'm thinking about doing a charity show for that youth center Luthor just built in Metropolis too. Can't stand baldy, but it's a charity thing." Tanya gets a curious look because the tattoos are very eye catching. She nods to the woman with a smile. Then she gawks at Jackie. Zee can't help it. She has to give him a thorough looking over because, damn. That boy is fine. Definitely not a regular at the Oblivion though. She raises a glass to him and calls over, "Man, what conditioner do you use? Because your hair is awesome." Because it is. He's like a walking Pantene commercial. "Hey Rain!" Zee greets the witch, waving her over. "How is?"
Slipping around people to get to the bar, Tanya has to smile at the amount of people. A place where she can feel mostly at ease. Ain't that something. When she sees the woman in jeans and leather jacket smile at her, she lifts her hand and opens her mouth--then the woman is calling to some other people. Ah, well. A shrug, then, and she tries to make herself heard over the din of the crowd sitting at the bar. It doesn't help that she never caught the name of the beer that was ordered by rain the other morning. Still, she orders a beer, tap, and hopes for the best, turning when her brain catches up with the noise and she realizes that Rain is, in fact, here.
Jackie siddles up to the bar and sighs, "Something cold and domestic." he says as he reaches up with a pair of fingers to pinch the bridge of his nose and swear softly in second hand Italian. ||You shouldn't worry Master. This is a place where your kind, our kind, belong. Why do you think we guided you to it? The world, it is more then you have been led to be-|| "Shuddup." Jackie says to no one, silencing the voice in his head. For now. "Hey buddy," he says, turning to his left, "you know where Queeeeee...." his voice trails off as he finds himself staring at a giant man cat thing. Then Zee speaks up and his gaze goes past Tommy to her. Pretty Lady!! He can do pretty lady! That makes sense!!! Ohthankgod. "Good genes." he says, flashing a pristine smile her direction. "But you're more then welcome to raid my product in the morning if you like." his tone is flirty, light hearted, but also rife with intent. Jackie likes the pretty ladies.
"Mittens... that's going to end up sticking forever isn't it." He whisker-grins and winks at Zatanna. "That sounds like it could be fun. And hey, any excuse to spend time with someone I actually feel 'normal' around.... it's a win win." Tommy glances Zatanna over though a smirks a little bit as he flicks his ears. When Zee is checking out the new arrivals, Tommy spins in his barstool again to check them out as well. Tommy chuffs just a little bit at Zatanna's comments about Jackie's hair. "Hey, I've got awesome hair too... ya know." He offers a light wave to Rain as Zee gestures her to join them. Jackie earns a deep scowl though when he starts flirting with Zee. Hey, that's his gig. Not that they're really on a date date or anything. "I think she can do a lot better pal."
Well, it is nice to see people at ease. Rain keeps her book tucked under her arm. Keep it together. Keep it together. And then, she smiles and waves to Zee. She quietly places an order and - gets greeted! Rain apparently prefers fresher, mintier drinks. And there's a Tanya, too. She waves to Tanya in turn. She's turn in two directions now, looking between the two. "Salutations! I'm doing pretty well. How about yourself? And um," She looks between Tanya and Zee again - it's a wonder she hasn't snapped her neck like a giraffe on a tilt-a-whirl. There's something you should do... "Ah! Um, have you met Miss Tanya before?" There. That didn't hurt. She didn't turn inside out or burst into flames. Phew. She smiles to Tommy, too. "Hi there." At the hair talk, she gives Jackie a curious look before self consciously patting her hair. Hmm. Bummer. A shrug and a smile, though she blinks at the exchange. Opens her mouth. CLoses it.
"A man who knows what he wants, how refreshing. Or something," Zatanna deadpans with a wink at Jackie. She asides to Tommy, not trying to be quiet. "I think I smell an Oblivion Bar Virgin. Don't you?" She grins at Tom's comment and scritches him behind the ear. "You know you're my favorite cat guy. Now play nice with the newbie." She clasps Rain on the shoulder when she's near enough. "Doctor Strange signed on to our little fanclub. If you'd like I can give you some training, or maybe he can too. And no, we haven't met." She offers a hand to Tanya. "Zatanna Zatara. This is Mittens. And this one I'm dubbing Fabio because of his hair."
She really can't help but smile at the way the young witch is trying so hard. It's an appreciative smile, though; Tanya can see that it's not easy but Rain's pushing through it. She steps up when she's introduced, switching her beer mug to her left hand so she can extend her right for a firm shake. Not one for dainty handshakes, her. "Miss Zatara, Mittens, and--Fabio," she says, smiling to each in turn and holding out her hand to them as well. "Li. Tanya Li. I'm--this isn't that old hat to me, yet, either. This is only my second time here; the first time was when I met Rain, here." A nod to the young witch." A proverbial light bulb goes on over her head. "Oh, Rain--later I need to get with you about the Central Park thing. You're not going to believe it." She doesn't want to drag the other young woman away, now, but figures she'd want to know what happened.
Jackie grins at Zee before his eyes flick to Tommy and chill a bit, "I'm sure you do buddy, but I'm guessing thinking isn't a strong suit for a guy who forgets to wear pants in public." he points out, and then down to Tommy's um... furry open air look. He then glances back to Zee, "Know what I want? Hell no. I'm a man, we don't know anything, mostly we just sit around waiting for a beautiful woman to let us know what's available." he turns, plucks up his beer and takes a sip, "So gorgeous," he asks Zee, "you available?" he flashes that same grin and then turns to accept the introductions and shakes available hands, "Jackie. Fabio was way to blond and had that ridiculous chin."
Tommy leans into the ear scritches from Zatanna, and can't help but rumble softly. "Does that mean we have to put a V on his head in lipstick and humiliate him?" He glances up at Zee with a playful and devious whisker-grin. At least until the 'Mittens' things start spreading. "Tom's fine. Just Tom. Not Tomcat... for the love of..." He mutters off just a little bit. Tom's fairly common a name, so people arn't going to be likely to connect him. His grumpy demanor fades though when Tanya offers her hand a Tommy gives it a light friendly squeeze. "A pleasure." Of course, when Jackie opens his mouth once again Tommy's smile slips back into a scowl. "No need to be jealous just because some of us can pull off the au natural look. Besides you try finding pants with a tail hole..." Tommy's shoulders slump just a bit as his pacifst tendancies kick in, though he does offer a light warning growl when Jackie starts hitting on Zee again. "She's actually with me tonight... but I'm sure you can find someone else up for an evening of disappointment."
Ooh. Wow. Rain's eyes are pretty wide now. She smiles at the shoulder clasp from Zee. "Really? That's awesome. That would be an honor," She nods. She seems genuinely appreciative, really. She smiles as Tanya is introduced. Rain's an attentive audience, glancing between the two. "Yeah? Awesome. I've been reading a bit on the fae but ..." She goes quiet. She doesn't seem to want to butt in to too many conversations, pausing. Okay. Be the socially attentive seagull. She tilts her head at Jackie, blinking. Her eyes widen, eyebrows lifting. She seems either in awe of his bravery or rather surprised. She looks to Tommy, then and - gives up trying to follow the conversation. She sips her drink. "I'd be careful hitting on people too much in a magic bar... you could get turned into a newt or something. Though... I heard one guy turns people into goats," She taps her chin. That's kind of novel. She shrugs and smiles faintly. "Welcome to the um, new people." Fidget. At least it's a more refined, workable awkward these days. Ish. Kinda. But that's like saying being a LITTLE on fire is better than being a lot on fire. You're still on fire, be it one's pants, shoes or backside.
"That depends on who you ask," Zatanna replies to Jackie. "But what they say doesn't matter. You're asking the wrong question, Jackie. The right question is, what are you drinking, pretty lady, and can I buy your next round." She grins. "Otherwise come ons tend to result in me turning your pants into a tutu." Mind you, her availability is usually dependent on the mood of one broody jerk or another broody jerk. She elbows Tom. "But I /like/ Mittens." She nods to Rain. "We'll talk and work out a study schedule." Part of making Shadowpact was to make sure the kids learn enough to stay not-dead afterall. "So, Tanya, the tattoos are pretty amazing. Where'd you get them? I'm in the market for a few myself." Of the warding variety.
And Tanya was just mid-sip when Rain makes the comment about goats and newts. She snerks softly, but enough to make bubbles in the brew. At least she didn't laugh hard enough to do a spit-take. That--would probably have been bad. At the question, there are whispers in the back of her mind, though they come /from/ specific tattoos strewn about her. She clears her throat before answer, to make sure the beer is down, then says, "There's this great tattoo parlor in the Bronx; guy let me do odd jobs for him to pay them off. Started getting them when I was eighteen." Which--wasn't that long ago, really, but. "I don't know what you'd want to do if you meant magically-bound tattoos or the like. Mine got--magicked up later, you could say." A whisper from her right bicep, one she tries to ignore. Maybe ignoring it will make it go away, for once.
Jackie's grin remains in place, "Someone else? You've already relegated her to being in for an evening of disappointment? That is not a good sign." he shakes his head with a sage sad smile. His attention is then drawn to Rain, "Ma'am, if I lacked the courage to hit on people in a gar, magical or otherwise, I'd be going back on the deal with the supernatural being that gave me this hair. And let's be honest, for hair like this?" he points at his own head, "Even newts would kill." Zee draws his attention next and he laughs, "Oh I can't buy your next round, the alley cat might get offended and start marking his territory and that'll be weird for me as I'm new here. Maybe next time." ||You cannot let that pass Master.|| The skin at edge of Jackie's eyes tighten as he forcibly shuts down his own whispers with a thought. Not now.
"See... there's a perk to not wearing pants around this lady. No tutus or other embaressing attire." He offers to Jackie with a rather smug smile, as he finishes his lovely fruity drink. "I'm typically a beer person, but I have to say you have an excellent taste in drinks, Zee." He leans in and offers a light nuzz to her cheek. "You can always call me Mittens, you've certainly earned it." Tommy offers an admiring look at Tanya's tattoos. "They look great." He rolls his eyes at Jackie's attempt at a shot at him, though he does grunt a short time later at the territory marking comments. The hackles on the back of his neck going up a little bit.
Oh dear. Rain smiles a little, listening to the conversation. "Okie dokey," She nods. She is quiet as Tanya's asked about her tattoos. There's an amused look at the near spit-take. But mercifully, she stays quiet. She tilts her head at Jackie. "Fair enough. Um. What should I call you? I usually go by Rain," She explains. "Just be mindful of jealous newts, I guess." She considers. She blinks owlishly at the pot shots between Tom and Jackie. It's like slap hockey with angry Candians. Hopefully no one gets newted, tutued, unsafe hex, or anything like that. "They have nice drinks here," She agrees in a soft voice. She watches the back and forth for now, looking thoughtful. "I'm pretty sure he's not going to go all R. Kelly on you," Rain offers in Tom's defense. "You're not in a closet or a midget." There. See? Argument. SOLVED.
"I'd drag Constantine along to do his ritual tapdancing," Zee notes to Tanya. She snorts and looks from Jackie to Tom and back again. "This is why I always end up buying the damn drinks. To stop World War Three from occurring in the bar. For Vishanti's sake! I', not even wearing the fishnets tonight!" she grouses. She looks to the girls and rolls her eyes as if to say "male-type-beings".
"I find a good /grab/ can help things," Tanya notes quite innocently. "Just a grab, a twist, and..." Her eyes, hands, and the flame "sleeve" on her right leg glow briefly, as she summons a bit of flam in her palm. That all fades a moment later, and the pink-haired woman raises her beer mug again. "It'd save on buying the damn drinks," she notes with her brows lifted, then she takes a deep sip of her beer. She's just trying to help, that's all. The smile she's trying to hide behind the mug means /nothing/.
Jackie looks over at Rain, grins, then breaks into an open laugh. He has a good laugh and it lightens his features predictably. The move also shows, to anyone who's looking, the butts of pistols hidden away inside his suit coat in twin shoulder rigs. "Oh I like you Rain. You are adorable. I am Jackie and you my dear, are my new favorite person in this bar." he fixes his eyes on her intently. He has a new target. Tanya's flamey palm trick gets a glance from him, but it's more measuring then concerned. He's taking the new place in stride now that his initial freak out is over. Besides, this place has Rains, and Rains are hilarious which makes this place awesome. His attention falls back to the new target.
"Hey, I'll happily repay you for the drinks... I just left my pants in my other pants. Along with my wallet." He flashes Zee a playful grin, as he gestures for another drink from the bartender. "But I'll be good." He gives Zee the most cute kittyface that he can manage to muster. Trying to focus his attention on his drink, rather than continue butting heads.
Rain smiles faintly and rubs the back of her head. She seems sympathetic enough to Zee, even in her awkward right. It must be pretty tough. She looks to Tanya, her eyebrows lifting. "Huh, what cha doing?" She asks about the fire. Then a blink and smile at Jackie's grin and laugh. Rain is shy. She turns red, even almost to the ears. "Thank you. That's kind of you to say. I appreciate it and um, I'm honored." She's really red now and looks ready to grab her calculator and bolt under the fridge. Ahem. Don't bluescreen! Hard reboots are painful. She goes quiet a moment. She has a quirked smile. She's not sure how to react to this. It's shifting gears abruptly. She lets the smile linger. "I'm - sorry if I'm a little quiet. Sometimes the words fall around me." Words and pants on the ground, lookin' like a fool. "That's - very kind of you, Jackie. It's a pleasure to meet you." Seems well mannered enough despite the social anxiety that pops up like a mole in a clown suit in a Steven King movie. Yikes. "What do you all think of it here?"
Jackie's attention to Rain doesn't go unnoticed. Zee's lips purse. "Maybe we'll need to start your lessons early," she comments to the girl. She doesn't like Fabio's look at the young witch. She pats Tom on the back, all forgiven.
Looking to the young witch, Tanya arches a brow and gives Rain a sympathetic look. She looks like smoke's about ready to come pouring out of her ears. "Hey, don't worry about it, Rain," she tells the other young woman with a smile. "Don't worry about words failing you. Sometimes being quiet isn't the worst thing in the world. Lets you listen better, sometimes, eh?" The smile widens as she goes to reach other to thump the witch's shoulder with her fist--lightly, of course. She's not about to /bruise/ the poor witch.
Jackie smiles at the blush and the stuttering words. Shy is cute too... and this also amuses him. For all the good looks and nice clothes, this guy is obviously a predator. Not the creepy sort! More the... alpha shark sort. He's a hunter. And Rain smells like prey. "I'm not entirely sure it's real yet." he admits to Rain openly, "Like much about my life as of late, I'm beginning to think everything is one half illusion and the other half out right lie. But," his gaze remains on Rain, "things are starting to look up."
Tommy can't help but pay attention to Jackie's creepy flirting. Some indeed do see it as creepy. "Jeuss, where's Chris Hansen when you need it." Yeah, he's starting to feel a bit uncomfortabl even sitting near the man and grabs his pack of smokes off the bar. "Zee, I'm gonna nip outside and steal a smoke. I need a lil fresh air, it's starting to stink like desperation in here." He bumps his elbow into Jackie as he gets up from the bar, and doesn't bother apologizing.
Rain probably would be the derpy antelope chillaxin' at the watering hole, enjoying some mighty fine H2O when suddenly, LIONS! And you just know the documentary commentor would have some smarmy comment about natural selection. Darwiiiiiin! "That's true. But you did the ..." She points to her hand. She noticed! Then her face goes red. Wait. What? Apparently Rain has a pretty good sense of danger, except when she's blundering into it. Oh well. She sips her drink. At the soft thump, she smiles faintly. She's not fragile, at least. "Well. I'm pretty good at setting shoes on fire," Self defense! Fingerwriggle. "... kidding, that's actually pretty mean. She at least, has a pretty good sense of consequence at times. Deep breath. And pigeons. Sometimes she immolates pigeons. Mostly the knife wielding Gotham ones. She smiles faintly back at Jackie. Dang slow antelopes. Um. "I see. I can understand that. A bar that's not really in one place as we define it... or maybe it /is/... And a lot of the things you run into are a bit surreal. Like those taser ants." She trails off quietly. She tilts her head. "Well. I'm glad that things are looking up," Nod. She's not quite sure what to do about this, really. She pauses at the desperation comment. Oh. "Oh." She rubs the back of her head. That's awkward. "Um." She looks a little overwhelmed trying to keep up with it all.
"Ladies, why don't we get a table. I'm curious about how you're acquainted and want to hear more about the tattoo shop," Zatanna says as a means to an intervention. Not on her watch, Fabio. She attempts to take Rain lightly by the elbow to steer her to a booth, jerking her chin for Tanya to join them.
Being not exactly unperceptive, Tanya notices the look in Jackie's eye. A pink brow arches as she returns her attention to Rain; though, with her blank eyes, it's likely no one notices the difference. She's opening her mouth to come up with an excuse to dragRain off--when Zatanna does it for her. Well, that certainly works. Either it was more obvious than even she thought, or great minds really do think alike. "Why thank you, ma'am," she says, inclining her head respectfully and offering Zatanna a smile. "Hey, Rain, let's grab the seats before someone comes along and steals 'em." That's said as she goes to hook her arm around Rain other arm--in a completely friendly, in no way get-the-antelope-away move--and help Zatanna steer her to the table.
Jackie has seen this before, this is the pack mentality, steering the weaker animals away from the devouring jaws of the hunter at the last second, an attempt to save it from it's inevitable demise. But Jamie is a hunter, and one doesn't become so without being patient, "You ladies have a good night." he says, his eyes still on Rain, "And you... I think I'll run across you again at some point. I occasionally get a feeling about these sorts of things, they're never wrong." he changes his gaze to fix the charmingly wolfish grin onto the Honey Badgers in a knowing manner. Temporary escape at best, and he wants them to know it. "Barman! I'll have another beer."