|Thanksgiving In The Big Apple|
|What: Selina spends the holiday in NYC and makes a new acquaintance.|
The holidays have arrived, the time of year when the various shops and businesses promise big deals and the latest-and-greatest new toys, gadgets and technology to those who are willing to brave the crowds while fighting off the food comas their earlier Thanksgiving dinner threatens to put them in. Some people will do anything for a bargain including going out Thanksgiving night. The crowds are thankfully mostly localized, kept to the malls and shopping districts, leaving places like Rockefeller relatively free of the chaos otherwise found during this time of year.
Selina Kyle is one of the tourists here, enjoying what peace there is to be found. She did a bit of shopping earlier as is attested to by the couple of bags she has hanging off of her arms, while a cup of froo-froo gourmet hot chocolate is held in hand and occasionally sipped from.
By rights Peter should probably still be home himself. Sure, he spent the afternoon with his Aunt and dinner was, as always, nothing short of amazing. If nothing else it wouldn't exactly kill him to get in a little study time. He might be a natural genius but even exceptionally bright college students still need to put in a little work to keep out. Something a few of his professors have commented on as a matter of fact. But instead of that he stuck around long enough to help clean up, to exchange a few pleasantries with the neighbors and then he excused himself, on his way to Manhattan a short time later.
For a change however the tousel haired young man is not in his rather distinctive mask and costume. Instead it is just Peter Parker who wanders through the square, his camera hung around his neck. It is something else that has been pointed out to him. While he gets himself in position to take some truly remarkable pictures, his composition isn't exactly... amazing. No doubt the hazard of not actually being behind the camera most of the time when those photos are snapped no doubt. But in the end, he is little more then a gifted amateur when it comes to photography, something he knows well. Which is why he finds himself wandering here, taking photos of regular life instead of himself in action as Spider-Man. Raising the camera to his eye, he focuses in, the image of an attractive woman with her drink and packages coming clear as the flash goes off.
Sel is fortunate enough to have been looking in the opposite direction when the flash goes off, it sparing her from being temporarily blinded. Even then, the sudden bright light is caught out of the corner of her eye, it attention-grabbing even if it isn't seen fully. A bright smile's given to the photographer as she leans to the side as she tries to peek around the camera that's held to Peter's face, her expression warm. "I hope I didn't break your camera," she teases lightly while shrugging. "I was in such a hurry to get out of Gotham today that I didn't bother to doll myself up too much."
What she says is true even if spoken in jest as she has very little in the way of cosmetics on and her hair, while neat, is not styled. As she stands there, talking, people pass her with thicker knots of bodies parting so they won't run the bag-bearing woman over.
During the day of course he wouldn't need to use a flash and there would be little distraction offered by his quietly snapping some photos. But twilight has long since come and gone and even with the plaza lit up brightly, clear photos still require that little extra. Lowering the camera as he is addressed, a sheepish smile slides across Peter's features and he dips his head towards the woman he just photographed, one hand reaching back to rub at his suddenly warm neck. "Sorry about that. I was just practicing a little," he offers by way of explanation. "I passed a department store a couple of blocks back on my way here. I kind of thought you made a much nicer picture then two overweight ladies swinging purses at each other as they fought over the last trendy gadget," he adds wryly.
Selina's smile softens a bit, the warmth still present as it shifts into something a bit more amused in nature. Hard to tell what gets her expression to change, however. Could be the photo taker's reaction to her words as easily as it could be his joke about the shoppers. What doesn't change is her personable demeanor. Stepping closer, Sel offers Peter a hand, her manicure on display when she extends it. "My name is Selina. Selina Kyle." That might be a name Peter recognizes, assuming he keeps up with Gotham social news. "And you are..." Pause. "And what are you practicing for, if I may ask?"
Admittedly, Peter is not an avid reader of the society page. World news, sure. The technology and science section, absolutely. He's even been known to check out the sports pages every now and then. But gossip columns? Not so much. But he does work for a newspaper and there is a fair amount of overlap among the high society of Gotham City and New York given their close proximity. So his eyes widen just a little though his expression doesn't otherwise change, sheepish smile remaining firmly fixed in place. "A pleasure. I'm Peter, Peter Parker," he says, taking her hand as he offers his own introduction in turn. "Ahhhh, I'm something of a freelance photographer. It helps pay the bills," he says with a small shrug. "But I've kinda been getting by with being in the right place at the right time to get the action shots, you know? I was told that my actually technique, ummm, kinda sucks otherwise so I thought I work a little on it," he admits. It's not that Peter likes criticims any more then the next person, and admittedly Robbie Robertson did not put it anywhere near in such harsh terms. But for now this is how Peter scraps by financially. He wants to at least do the best job he can.
Criticism is not something Selina has faced a lot of personally but she has seen it visited upon others, many of whom are not deserving of such treatment. It makes her angry to know people see fit to try and tear someone down by giving rudely-worded opinions and she can not help but to frown when Peter explains why he's taking the pictures he is this evening. "Did they actually use that word," she asks, sounding a bit put out. "They actually told you you... suck?" The cup she has been drinking from is given one last look before it's tossed, put into a nearby trash can. "I am so sorry. I don't mean to act... well, bitchy. About that subject, I mean. It just ruffles my feathers to hear that kind of thing."
The fact that she should be even a little put out surprises Peter a little bit, but that expression quickly passes and when he smiles again that sheepish, slightly embarrassed quality has finally faded away entirely. "No, no, nothing like that. He was actually really nice about it. Well... I guess nice isn't the right word. You can't really be nice when you're telling someone that they aren't doing their job as good as they should. But he was professional," he admits. "But I definitely know what you mean. My editor on the other hand... well, lets say that journalism is probably not the right field for someone with a delicate ego or any sensitivity to personal attacks," he admits drily.
Now it's her turn to be embarrassed, Selina's face going rather red when she realizes that she kind of flew off the handle. "Well..." Clearing her throat, she looks side to side before chuckling, sounding just about as embarrassed as her expression is. "I'm glad. That you... er, that is." The words stop as suddenly as they started to flow from her, Selina not sure what to do or say at first. "Would you like a cup of coffee or something," the invite for a drink made at the precise time she gestures towards a vendor's cart with a tilt of her head.
Finally letting that camera fall to dangle around his neck once more Peter smiles again. "It's kinda refreshing to see people actually care about how others are treated. I think most of us tend not to, very much, unless it somehow affects us on a personal level," he offers quietly, sincerely, though leaves it at that. It's a brisk sort of night out, but the sudden color in her cheeks isn't lost on him. But then he could kinda feel his own neck burning himself when he felt as if he had invaded her privacy. Following her gesture, the dark haired young man nods his head. "That... would actually be nice. If for nothing else then to warm my hands. I kinda forgot my gloves at home," he admits, that sheepishness coming right back.
"I do care. Or I guess I should say I selectively care." It is no secret that Selina's got more love for cats than most people but if she were to be asked she will admit that some people and their experiences do get to her on some level or another. "I just don't like it when someone tries to do something only to get ripped into by others. It's not fair." Sighing, she moves up to where the promised hot drinks can be found where she orders, and pays for, two large coffees. "I can't wait for the snow to fall," she eventually says while looking around. It is getting close to when the Big Apple and Gotham both wind up blanketed in the white stuff and she's actually looking forward to it this year.
"I think we all selectively care on some level. Still, it's better then not caring at all," Peter replies with a chuckle, joining her in the short lineup by the vendor's cart. Before he can dig into his pocket for his wallet she has paid for both their coffees and while he really should at least pay for his own, if not both of them... well, rent is due next week and he is still a little short so... "Thanks," he murmurs, wrapping hands around the paper cup, almost immediately feeling warmth run through them and letting a little sigh of contentment slip from him. "It's kinda starting to feel like it, especially on nights like this," he agrees. "It's always nice for the first few days at least." After that, well, Peter just wishes he had a somewhat heavier costume.
Selina does a bit of bag juggling before her own coffee is taken between her hands, it left undoctored. "The snow does tend to turn into dirty slush fairly quickly, doesn't it," she asks, the question paired with a frown. "It always looks so horrible by the time it's ready to melt. Makes me consider moving up to Maine or another of the states that are less city and more country, sometimes." The first sip of heat-providing java is taken and she smiles, content. It's not the best coffee in terms of quality but it works for warmth as well as caffeine. "This is very nice. Always glad to meet new people..."
Admittedly Peter was more thinking about the cold that leeches through his rather thin costume, or the added difficulty in getting around the city, but now that she mentions it... "Greym salty slush isn't the most attractive of backdrops no," he agrees wryly, fingers slowly warming up as he clings to that cup, raising it slowly to his lips and sipping slowly, a faint whiff of steam curling out from the edge of the cup's lid. "I think I'd like to visit a place like that, maybe for a couple of weeks. But I have a really hard time imagining living there year round. But then I'm New York, born and bred. I've never spent a lot of time outside of the city truthfully. I'm not sure how I'd adjust to the slower pace," he admits before chuckling and nodding his agreement once more. "It is. Thanks again for the coffee."
"I think I am rather inclined to agree with you. Visting the upper part of New England would be nice but I believe that such beauty would get old. Especially to someone who is used to living in a city like Gotham." Dark, shadow-ridden and riddled with crime, Gotham is by no means what one could consider beautiful. The buildings might be considered nice to look at but even then, most of them have fallen into various stages of disrepair, their loveliness marred by the damage. "So, Peter. What else do you do? When you're not taking pictures of poor, unsuspecting women, that is." She winks, Selina doing so to make sure he knows she's teasing him.
There are all kinds of beauty afterall. And cities like New York and Gotham have their own sort. "Exactly. I'm not sure if I could sleep without the sound of cars at all hours, or sirens in the distance, or any of the other sounds you just get used to. And there is something spectacular about tall buildings, all lit up. Or even a place like this," Peter adds, sweeping a hand around the plaza. "You won't get something quite like this up there. Of course, you're not going to see a snow capped mountain here so I guess it evens out," he admits with a smile. At her teasing, Peter's cheeks flush once more and he quickly raises the coffee cup to his face, taking a long sip and almost burning his tongue as he tries to hide his expression. "In my defense you're the first, or one of the first that I've snapped like that," he counters, managing a smile. "Well, I have my job. And I go to Empire State University. At the science department, so that keeps me pretty busy. What about you? What brings a Gotham Girl to the Big Apple?"
"True. Oh well. Here's to hoping we can experience snowy nature, someday." The socialite lifts her cup in salute and she too takes a sip, unaware as to why Peter is taking as long of one as he does. When asked about her motivation for coming to NYC she pauses, Selina not exactly sure how to answer. Yes, she did need a change in scenery as well as got hit by the urge to shop, but does Peter really want to hear that? "I guess you can say I just needed to get out of Gotham for a bit," she admits with a grin. "But I'll be heading back tonight. Going to hop a train early in the morning."
Somehow Peter doesn't expect that he'll be visiting Maine, Vermont or any of the other New England states anytime soon, not unless he gets sent there on an assignment at least. If his wallet is hard pressed to manage a coffee then a weekend getaway to a quiet bed and breakfast somewhere is most definitely out of the question. "I think it might be awhile for me yet, but you never know," he agrees wryly before he falls silent, nodding as he listens to just what has brought her to his hometown. "A change of scenery is always nice. Or so I would imagine. Like I said, not exactly a world traveler right here," he admits with a smile.
"I am sure you'll be able to see it at some point, Peter." Seline smiles and then, somehow, manages to pull a business card from a pocket in her jeans, it then given to him. "I'd love to chat more but probably should find myself a place to spend a bit of time while waiting for my train. Please feel free to give me a ring sometime."
Taking the card, Peter tucks it away with a smile, nodding his head. "Sounds like a good idea to me. It was very nice meeting you Selina. And thanks for the coffee," he adds once more before lifting up his camera just a little from where it dangles around his chest. "Who knows, maybe if the picture turned out good I'll send you a print," he says lightly before lifting a hand in farewell.