|What: The helper bots get lonely when Tony's gone for too long. Fortunately some guests arrive to help Pepper keep them company.|
It's after business hours. Well, for most people. Pepper is still working full steam ahead, though as the office is already mostly empty, her heels are left on the floor by her desk. She's in the middle of refilling tea cup and talking with JARVIS over the speakers.
"... I'll stop by there when I finish this last quarterly review. Are they okay for now?"
"As well as can be expected, Miss Potts, though I suspect Dummy is beginning to push his boundaries. Again."
Pepper sighs. "Okay. I'll hurry."
Bucky Barnes stops by the Tower one December day, going through the front door and everything. Though depending on how locked up things are, he might see how far in he can get before JARVIS either asks him to stop or he finds something too difficult to bypass without breaking something.
Quite the contrary. JARVIS clearly recognizes Bucky, and before the man is more than halfway across the lobby, the security guards visibly stand down, though one tiny woman with the nametag 'Becca' approaches carrying a variation on a small safe deposit box.
"Sergeant Barnes, good evening," the AI's voice offers as smoothly as ever. "I believe you wish to speak with Miss Potts? If I may, sir, please allow Miss Reynolds to safely store your spare weaponry."
Bucky Barnes laughs quietly. Well, at least being after hours doesn't mean the security is slacking.. that's good. He looks up at the ceiling as the closest he can do to directly addressing JARVIS, "Why? That armored suit that was following Pepper around was carting more heavy weaponry than an entire SHIELD squad from what I saw. If I'm armed, I'd be more help if things went south." he actually doesn't sound defensive so much as he's still trying to work out the flow around the places and people he's getting to know.
"Understood, Sergeant Barnes. Though this is more for the peace of mind of Stark Industries' other employess. And I can assure you that should anything go 'south', even the Iron Man would only be supplementary weaponry." The AI's voice remains as calm as ever, even when stating what almost sounds like a threat. To her credit, Becca simply stands there calmly and waits with a small smile. And likely Bucky's alert enough to tell that she has the stance of someone who does actually know how to fight, despite her barely over five foot stature.
Bucky Barnes raises his eyebrows, looking from the ceiling to miss Becca, who he nods to politely before addressing the AI once more. "They gonna feel that much better if you tell 'em I don't have a gun? What exactly are you counting as 'supplementary' here?" he's not stating it directly either, but he's hardly disarmed until the term is taken literally. Even then, much like Becca, it would be a stretch to say he wasn't dangerous.
"Perhaps this would be better discussed with Miss Potts, Sergeant?" Becca finally speaks up. "Honestly, Sarge, it's only the obvious ones that JARVIS gets snippy about. We have some employees that... well, they kinda freak out a little at the sight of weapons, after all the bad stuff that's happened around here."
Bucky Barnes spreads his arms in a shrug, showing a distinct lack of obvious weapons in his civvy guise. That's not to say he's not armed to the teeth, but it's not immediately obvious. "If you let me in to see her, I'd be happy to take it up with her face to face."
Becca points out one of the former assassin's concealed weapons. "That one please, Sarge, and we'll call it good." Again, proof of the tiny security guard's better than average combat chops.
Bucky Barnes shrugs, and seems willing to relinquish what she calls him on. He pulls out the handgun in question and sets it butt first in the lock box she's holding out. "We good?" with the company he keeps, he's not about to dismiss someone for being a 5'-not-much lady.
Natasha Romanov had noticed that Peggy has seemed off, about something. Without prying or even simply asking what was up, the redhead half asked if Peggy would like to have a late night tea with her and Pepper. "We've been doing it for years." She explained. "Pepper burns the midnight oil, so sometimes I come over and just... keep here company."
Peggy Carter was still staying in the city for now, in her little old apartment, though she's been spending most days out on Long Island. The invitation from Natasha was a relief, "If you're certain Pepper won't mind..." But with a bit of reassurance, she's on her way. She meets Natasha in the lobby, clad in a more casual out fit today -- high waisted dark wool slacks and a dark gold silk blouse. She's, apparently, recovered some of her older clothing from her apartment because they do *not* make pants like that nowadays. She arches a brow as she sees another familiar face through the glass of the lobby. "Seems like we all that the same idea."
The diminuitive security guard accepts the pistol that Bucky puts in the lockbox she's holding with a smile. "Have a wonderful evening, Sarge." She closes and locks the box, offers the key to Bucky, and once he accepts it, she returns to the security desk to stow the box.
One of the bank of elevators opens its doors with a soft ding, as if it had just been waiting for Bucky.
Natasha might be used to JARVIS greeting her, but when Peggy arrives, he might be almost conspicuously silent.
Janet van Dyne doesn't fly in for once, since she's carrying a briefcase with doodling materials. If there's one thing she takes seriously (that isn't heroing), it's fashion design - and special events are always fun to design for! It didn't take much convincing to get her involved, especially for a friend.
Bucky Barnes pockets the key, noticing the new arrivals and turning to wave. "There a party going on I don't know about?" he wonders of the ladies with raised eyebrows. They don't have the air about them he'd expect if something were actually wrong. He heads over to hold open the elevator door, though he supposes it likely JARVIS can somehow ensure it stays open as long as it needs to.
Natasha Romanov waves to Bucky as she spots him. "I just brought tea and crumpets!" she says, grinning. And then Jan walks in. "Janet! Oh, Jan, I actually was wondering if you had some fabric I could buy off you - long story." She hurries up to the elevator, and stands close to Bucky.
Peggy Carter is quiet, giving a warmer smile to the little crowd that has formed, but she's subdued today. She's also slightly bracing for that achingly familiar voice, but it doesn't come, much to her relief. "Bucky. Miss. van Dyne. Poor Miss Potts is going to be invaded." Peggy murmurs wryly as she leans back against the lift and waits to be taken up, up and up, entirely too quickly.
The elevator waits for everyone to pile in. Because even when he goes silent, JARVIS the AI is still nice that way.
Janet van Dyne says with a grin, "Oh, Pepper's used to it by now, I'm sure. And funny you should mention a party, I--" She trails off, not finishing the name, glancing between Bucky and Peggy. She picks back up, just leaving the name out. "I was asked about possible holiday outfits."
Bucky Barnes smirks, snapping his fingers. "Damn, potluck? And me with nothing but sufficiently-concealed weapons." he pats down his pockets and pulls out a pack of gum. "Think this'll fly?" he wonders, as the elevator climbs.
Natasha Romanov can't help but sigh dramatically at Bucky. "And I thought I was bad James." She elbows him playfully. "You're such a mooch, as always." There's real affection in her voice.
The interplay between Natasha and Bucky draws a bit more of a smile to Peggy's lips. It was nice to see. She sinks her shoulders into the wall of the elevator, but something in Janet's words caught her. She cocks a brow, "You what, Janet? Seemed you were about to say something else..." Peggy never lets anyone get away with anything! Though the lift doors are now opening, Janet may escape answering just for that.
Janet van Dyne waves a hand dismissively as she steps out of the elevator. "Just a botched sentence. I'm lucky I was able to recover." Somehow she managed to swipe a stick of gum though.
Pepper has just settled back at her desk when the elevator dings at her floor. She looks up and then smiles when she hears all of the voices echoing down the hall. Standing and slipping her shoes on (just in case), she's at her door when everyone arrives. "Hello, everyone. Wonderful surprise. Please, come in. Make yourselves at home."
"Well, don't have enough of those snack cakes on me for everybody." Bucky replies virtuously to Natasha. "I got my manners." he adds, even proffering the packet in Janet's direction for expedited swiping. "Care to indulge, Peg?" he wonders over-formally to Peggy, tilting his head a little though as she seems to have something on her mind. He spares some attention to wave politely, almost deferentially to Pepper, though when they reach the end of the hall.
Natasha Romanov messes Bucky's hair, just a little bit. "I bought you three boxes, don;t tell me you ate them all *already*. You're worse than a teen." She's grinning though, as the head to Pepper's door. "Hello Miss Potts. Remember that Christmas blend you loved last year? I made some more." She holds out a good-sized tin. "I know, it's early for presents, but..."
"I think I shall refrain, James. I'm watching my figure." Peggy deadpans to him, a smirk dancing across her reddened lips. Though Janet is give a slightly curious look, the agent doesn't press the matter for now. She smiles and steps out of the elevator, tilting her head to Pepper in a respectful greeting. "Miss Potts. Forgive me for all of us descending on you like this, I didn't quite realize it was going to be a gathering."
Janet van Dyne tucks the wrapped gum stick away for the moment in case there are refreshments on offer. "Don't go packing on -too- many pounds, Jimmy-boy, or you'll have to let the seams out on all your suits." She greets Pepper warmly. "So was it happenstance, or were you plotting all of us being here for a reason?"
"If I'd tried to smuggle in three boxes, I got a feeling the lady downstairs would have ended up confiscating them along with the gun." Bucky quips to Natasha, and he returns Peggy's smirk in kind. "Can't blame you. With a figure like that, I bet a lot'a people do." He steps to the far side of the group fanning out in Pepper's office, sticking his hands back in his pockets. He waits to let the others settle into whatever they had planned before trying to bring up his own reason for stopping by, though he shoots Janet a startled sort of frown. "If you don't like my name, I can give you a pretty long list of options, but there's plenty of Jimmies in the world without me makin' the problem worse if you don't mind."
Pepper Potts gestures for everyone to enter her office, which of couse has more than enough room for everyone to sit. Accepting the tin from Natasha with a grin and a brief hug, she answers Peggy and Janet easily. "Oh, it's no problem at all. Nat knows that I'd be here all night if she didn't make me stop working. So, no plotting involved, unless it's Nat wanting to sniff through my teas and weed out the ones she deems inferior."
Speaking of, there's a pot of tea already made and waiting, though Pepper is very much tempted to start another one to try this year's Christmas blend. "Jan, you know the annual Christmas ball is coming up, and I'm going to be hard pressed to out do last years dress. Well, if I try to pick something out on my own, anyway. And, Nat's going to need something too. And I'm guessing James and Steve and Peggy as well." She bustles over to the credenza and pulls down cups and plates, setting up the small conference table for those who want to partake in the tea and snacks.
Natasha Romanov takes a seat right next to Bucky. "Yeah, Although I was... considering making my own dress this year. I think I remember how, now." She sideglances Bucky. "You'll come, won't you? I... could use a dance partner."
The discussion of a Christmas Ball just makes Peggy's eyes go a bit wide. It's distinctly possible she's never been to a ball *in her life*. She doesn't cut in, content to sort of slip into the shadows and let the others chatter happily about it. A slow smile slips over her lips as Natasha asks Bucky, even if it was a bit of a round about way. Peggy crosses behind Natasha's shoulder, seemingly moving for a drink, but she mouths in Bucky's direction 'Say YES.'
Janet gives Bucky a mischievous little half-smile. "Well, I guess I know what to call you when I want to get on your nerves..." She looks pouty when Natasha says she's doing her own dress. "Aw, not going to involve me at -all-? But what if we want to coordinate..? Think of how striking we could all be if we had a theme of some kind!"
Pepper Potts hands out the tea to everyone interested. "I did actually want to talk with you about that, Jan. I have a theme in mind this year, and I think I'll need your help to make it work. And give Nat LOTS of sewing practice." She just smiles at Bucky and Nat sitting side by side and says nothing. She knows better than to prod. "What do you think, Peggy? Want to help us plan the Stark holiday party this year?"
Bucky Barnes narrows his eyes at Janet, and looks like he'll say something more when he hears his name mentioned and blinks with a blank look. (it was his name, wasn't it? Or was Pepper talking about that stocky guy with the cigars?) comes up for some sort of ball. Sounds like there's some major events in the works he's missed up to now he's apparently expected to be involved in , and Natasha's question rather cements the point. He turns to her with raised eyebrows, though before he can reply he finds himself rolling his eyes at Peggy's helpful input. He's not -Steve-. "Sounds like fun," he answers Natasha, "Though this is the first I've heard of this thing. What kinda shin-dig are we talking here, exactly?" he wonders.
Natasha Romanov chuckles. "Lights, dancing, entirely too much sweets and liquor, and a charity event. A chance tolook all spiffy." Nat sips the tea Pepper so graciously gave her. "It's all good fun."
The question of a Stark holiday party just makes Peggy wince a bit, even if there is a minor victory with Bucky saying yes. She laughs, giving a roll of her eyes, "No, no... Goodness no. I had enough of that with Howard. I am most certainly *not* a party planner. Besides, someone needs to hold down the office while you are all gallivanting." Apparently, that is Peggy's plan -- pull a long night at work. She's about to say more when the Starkphone she'd been given rings. And it's no one in this room. That was concerning. She picks it up, speaking quietly, but probably can be slightly heard. "Yes, this is she... I... Yes. Understood. I'll be there as soon as I can... No, thank you for calling. Thank you." And she abruptly hangs up, no emotions clear on her features at all. She's turned all business. "You all must forgive me, I need to head off. Enjoy the party planning. Pepper, Janet, we should do lunch soon." She calls to the women she sees rather less. With that and a brief nod to the room, she's heading back straight for the elevator. The only indication something may be wrong is the slightly quicker speed to her step.
Janet van Dyne gives Peggy a wave and agrees they should meet again before she escapes. And then turns her laser-beam gleeful attention to Pepper. "You have my attention... What's the theme?" She's already opening up the briefcase to get at her sketchpad.
Pepper Potts leans a bit to watch Peggy gone-all-business depart. "Jan? I want trousers like that. Not for the holiday party, for every day wear." She looks over and sees the gleeful and ohs. "I want to do something a little less pomp and circumstance than usual. Tone down the extravagance and make it feel more like a homey, family gathering." She's doing her best to NOT say '1940s-esque', though that's really what she's got on the brain due to Bucky and Peggy's recent frequent presences.
Bucky Barnes 's smile falls away fairly quickly as Peggy's talking over the phone.. he may not have the memories to back up the impression, but something tells him loud and clear something's wrong. He finds himself watching Peggy's hands suspiciously as she hangs up, and he stands abruptly to go look out the window once Peggy is gone to see what direction she heads.
It's a solid thirty seconds after the elevator taking Peggy back to the lobby departs, and JARVIS finally speaks up again. "Miss Potts, if I may remind you of your promise to visit the 'bots."
Natasha Romanov waves to Peggy, concerned as she leaves. She gets up behind Bucky, and rests a reassuring hand on his shoulder. "She'll be okay." she murmurs.
Janet van Dyne chews on the end of a pencil. "So, stylish but downplayed... You're kinda playing to my strengths, you know. I love making stuff that's still functional." And she says with a grin, "And I'll add a pair of good trousers to the queue." She looks up as Jarvis talks. "...Visit the bots? Do they need walked or something?"
Pepper Potts offers Jan a smile, but it's covering up a good amount of both worry and sadness. "They're Tony's creations, helper robots with simple AIs. And one of them in particular can get ... unsettled when Tony's out of town for too long." She and Dummy spent a fair bit of time together when Tony was d... off planet because of that Darkseid person. "So, now I try to visit them at least every couple of days so they don't shut down." She looks at the others. "You're welcome to stay here and relax. I can be back as quickly as possible."
Bucky Barnes nods to Natasha, patting her hand on his shoulder. "Yeah. Yeah, I know." he agrees. Though he's still tense. He's not worried about Peggy-- not in terms of any physical danger. He doesn't have any solid proof, but. He can't help but worry the call had something to do with the proud and happy man in the grey suit from the photo on Peggy's desk. He tunes back in when Pepper asks about them staying. He replays parts of the conversation he'd missed and says, "Robots?" He looks interested, if anything.
"I didn't realize the bots were sophisticated enough to get lonely. Poor buddies." Natasha seems rather sympathetic. "I wouldn't mind spending more time with Dummy."
Janet van Dyne puts the pencil on the table along with the sketchbook. "Well, I'd be happy to pay a visit to a lonely robot. Outfit designs can wait for a little bit, at least. ...Anyone else?" She looks around to the assembled party.
Pepper Potts smiles at the group of them. "Let's go, then. This will make their week." Yes, their. There are three of the bots, even if Dummy is the most special of the bunch in multiple senses of the term. She leads them to the elevator, and after taking a moment to convince JARVIS that this is indeed a good idea, she takes them to Tony's workshop.
The majority of this room is powered down and has the feel of a residence waiting for its humans to return, but in the better-lit corner of the room (said corner being bigger than Pepper's already rather spacious office), battered looking sofas sit rather far apart -- at least a bot's width apart, and an equally beat up but very sturdy coffee table is between them. The entire area is almost meticulously tidy... if one does not look at the work tables themselves over in the darkened area, which are a mess of jumbled parts, components, wires, tools, various, and sundry.
When they enter the area, three robotic manipulator arms on motorized wheels approach from different parts of the room. One of them moves faster and a noticeable bit more erratically than the other two, clacking its three-fingered 'hand' a few times as it moves.
Bucky Barnes seems ready enough to follow along, looking intrigued. "Three of 'em?" his mouth quirks a little at Pepper debating the point with JARVIS..well, that's interesting. What does the AI think will happen exactly?
An impressed whistle greets the arrival of the three robots once the little expedition reaches it's destination. "What do they do?" Bucky wonders, walking right up to the nearest one, and holding out his hand like one might to introduce themselves to a dog. "Are they like JARVIS?"
Natasha Romanov waves to the three arm-bots as they roll out - she was somewhat familiar with them, but hadn;t seen them in a good long while. "I miss Tony too, Dummy."
Janet van Dyne makes the universal 'I saw a cute thing' noise ("Eeee!") and practically bounces over to the trio of manipulators. She cautiously holds out a hand to the closest one as if she's greeting a dog or cat. "Aren't you adorable!" she coos.
Pepper promptly steps toward the erratic one, actually petting the robot's actuators as its camera lens follows her and the servos make rather expressive whining and whirring noises. The other two 'bots approach Natasha and Jan respectively, their motions more 'polite' than Dummy's. The one closest to Jan (there's a small embossed area on the main casing that says 'Butterfinters') reaches for Jan's offered hand, grips is very delicately, and then 'shakes'.
Speaking of Dummy, he whirs past Pepper almost immediately, vrooming right up to Bucky and looking him right in the face while clacking his fingers together again and rotating his hand a few times.
"JARVIS, did Dummy lose his tennis ball again?"
"It is behind the volatile chemicals box, Miss Potts."
Pepper offers Bucky a smile. "Not really like JARVIS, no. Though Dummy was Tony's first true AI. They're more on par with ... pre-school children?" She's already going over to a large red cabinet with a lock on it to recover the aforementioned tennis ball.
Bucky Barnes leans back a little as the robot rushes him, but holds his ground. If his foot shifts slightly to balance him better on the off chance he has to fight of flee, it's a background sort of thing, as he's smiling at the robot with an expression of almost boyish glee. "No kidding? This is the real deal.." he says, somehow seeming to feel Dummy is more a 'proper' ideal of a robot than either JARVIS or 'Broseph'. "What's the ball for? Does he play fetch or something?"
Natasha Romanov kneels down to look the bot that came up to her 'eye to eye; so to speak. "Hey you. How're you holding up buddy?" She pats the bot affectionately. "I know, Tony's being Tony again and ignoring you guys."
Janet van Dyne can't hide a gleeful grin when she shakes the robot 'hand'. She sees the nameplate as she looks over the little bot. "Pleased to meet you, Butterfingers. My name's Jan." She looks over at Pepper. "Pre-school is pretty darn impressive for a from-scratch AI."
"He derives pleasure from retrieving objects, Sargeant Barnes, and with the lack of current projects, he will gladly retrieve the tennis ball as many times as you wish to throw it for him." JARVIS is being polite again.
You, who is focusing his camera on Natasha, reaches to very gently grip a lock of her hair, then lets it go equally gingerly to pluck at her shirt.
Butterfingers releases Jan's hand then starts 'studying' her, leaning this way and that and focusing his camera on her hair and her clothing and her shoes and, well, everything.
Dummy backs up a little after studying Bucky's face from extremely close up, then lifts his arm with his fingers extended as far as they'll go.
Pepper walks back toward them, keeping the tennis ball hidden in one hand. "It really is, Jan. Especially when you take into account that Tony built Dummy while he was still in grade school." That would make the 'bot DECADES old.
Bucky Barnes turns to give Pepper an incredulous look. "Grade school?" he looks back to Dummy, reaching out to pat the reaching arm with his own metal one. He wonders, "So, wait, if the others came after, how come they're not as.." he searches for a word. "Expressive?" he's spotted the ball Pepper has and proceeds to watch whatever might transpire with it with great interest.
Natasha Romanov laughs as You picks at her hair and shirt. "Let me guess, you think I'm cute?" she teases, poatting the bot again. "My guy is that it has to do with age." she says to Bucky. "Common theory is that AI can 'grow' the longer they are active."
Janet van Dyne says, "Especially AI that have self-modifying code. They get more efficient and capable as time goes on as their routines prune and optimize and branch out." She miiiight know a bit about this, perhaps. She twirls around for Butterfinger. "Ostensibly, that would mean Dummy is - contrary to his name - the smartest in the bunch."
"If you were to ask Tony, he'd say that Dummy's programming is more glitchy than the others. But if glitches are what it takes to create personality, I'm sure not about to complain." Pepper steps over toward Bucky, ready to offer him the tennis ball, but Dummy's camera picks up the metal of Bucky's hand and OH does that get the bot's attention. His servos practically squeal in delight as he moves to follow the hand and focus on it and try to catch the shiny fingers. His actions attract the attention of the other two and they abandon the women to also crowd around Bucky in some bot version of fascination.
"Dummy, You, Butterfingers. You will cease this behavior immediately." Oooh, JARVIS is full on scolding here. The latter two bots do back off, but they still watch intently. Dummy, however, completely ignores JARVIS and keeps trying to catch Bucky's hand.
Bucky Barnes blinks, raising his eyebrows at the sudden crowding. "Wooah, okay. Hey, hiya, fellas." he dodges Dummy's first snatches at his hand wondering, "Guess you weren't expecting that? Didn't figure they'd care." he opts to just let Dummy catch his hand about the time the other two are just backing off. "It's okay, JARVIS. I was kinda doing the same thing to them, after all." there's a gash in the forearm, and the wrist doesn't rotate entirely smoothly because of a burr in the metal, but otherwise Bucky lets Dummy turn it to look how he pleases.
Natasha Romanov almost l;aughs. "They['re like cats. Anything shiny huh." She turns to You and pats 'his' hand. "It's okay. Wait your turn, You." She's amused, watching Bucky with Dummy.
Janet van Dyne snickers. "More like crows, I think. Cats go after anything that's small and running away. ..Makes me wonder what they'd think of my wings, but I'd rather not have those getting pulled around." Instead, she fishes out some coins and tries to see if Butterfingers can catch them midair.
Dummy turns Bucky's hand this way and that, though not at all roughly, and in the hitch of the limb's movement, the bot lets go of the metallic hand and starts trying to pull at Bucky's sleeve as if to remove it. "Sir, Dummy has requested that I run a diagnostic scan of your arm. Would that be permissible?"
Pepper is clearly surprised by this, based on her expression, even as both Butterfingers and You turn and vroom off. One starts back pulling a rolling chair, the other is opening one of those giant rolling toolboxes. Sadly, Jan's coins go completely unnoticed. Well, until You leaves the chair just behind Bucky, then the coins are picked up off of the floor and offers back to Jan one at a time.
Bucky Barnes uhhs. "Doesn't this Tony guy have a metal suit? They don't think I pinched his stuff or something, right..?" he wonders, as Dummy starts plucking at his sleeve. Jarvis' comment and the actions of the other two suggest otherwise pretty quickly, though. "A scan? What, like last time? Will it work if the panels aren't open?" he asks, referencing the shielding on his arm. "I actually stopped by to see if I could borrow a tool kit or something. There's a snag or something I wanted to do something about."
Janet van Dyne gives an appropriate thanks for the returned coins, and then sits back and watches with some amusement as Bucky gets fawned over.
Natasha Romanov sits down as well, curious. "I think Dummy thinks your arm hurts, or something. You're a sweetie, Dummy."
"Sir, that is what Dummy has noticed and wishes for me to ascertain," JARVIS says as Dummy keeps tugging at Bucky's sleeve perhaps a bit roughly though not enough to tear the fabric, and Butterfingers offers the small hand tools he's brought over. For her own part, Pepper just smiles. "They //are// helper bots. This is what they do for Tony. Help. Jan, Nat, would either of you like a drink while Bucky gets fawned over?"
Bucky Barnes pushes up his sleeve to the elbow, turning his arm so Dummy can see the damaged section. "Knock yourself out, then. Kinda curious if it'll work some after all 'cause of the scrape." he pauses when he notices the plate of tools. "Oh, hey. Thanks?" he picks out a heavy duty looking file and some pliers and nods to Pepper, looking a little surprised. "Is it okay with you if I stick around here and try to patch this up now?"
Janet van Dyne says, "That sounds lovely. Hopefully Bucky can hold his own!"
Natasha Romanov smiles. "A drink would be delightful."