Text Is Fail

December 24, 2017:

Sara wakes up and responds to Jackie. The making of a disaster in motion.

//East Side - New York City //

Sutton Place, Turtle Bay, Tudor City… all of these recognizable
neighborhoods help define the eastern side of Midtown Manhattan. From 6th
Avenue to the East River, from 40th St. to 59th St., the East Side contains
such notable landmarks as Sotheby's headquarters, the UN building, and the
unmistakable Chrysler Building, (at 4nd and Lexington) is THE art deco
structure, easily the most identifiable with the deco movement. It is the
tallest brick building in the world (1,046 feet). The offices are mostly
given over to private organizations such as Bank Rome and InterMedia
Grand Central Station, located at Park and 42nd Street, properly
known as Grand Central Terminal, is the intersection of 67 separate rail and
subway tracks serviced on 2 levels. There's a Dining Concourse featuring
restaurants and fast food below the Main Concourse.
East Side is home to some of the city's brightest luminaries, since
it's far enough away from the bustling city center to afford some privacy,
but close enough to the action to make it one of the more in-demand areas
outside of the Upper East Side.


NPCs: None.



Mood Music: [*\# None.]

Fade In…

Sara wakes up with what seems like a migraine birthed from a binder and a beatdown. /They'll know better than to f—-/

Her own voice in her head checks itself as she remembers the last thing she saw, and it was paled blue eyes - Darkness.

Sara comes up almost swinging, limbs having been akimbo in the tangle of sheets and a down comforter flail, the foreign surroundings having her reaching for a night stand not there, just more pillows. The tousel of deep auburn hair is pushed from face rapidly in smears of fingers while the rolling scattered crawl pushes her in a 'worm' towards the edge of the bed blind feeling for the night stand, the arm extended bearing the gold bracelet, the red gem an eye, glimmering at her likely in an amusement that gets…

"You need to fuck off, I blame you for this, every last b…" Her hand finds the nightstand littered in her belongings left. Phone, weapon, badge, wallet, nail clippers, bluetoothed headset. A lift of chin as fingers part and a single eye is staring at it, looking… No clothes. "..bit of bad luck."

At least Posh Lowell comes with a thick cotton robe in the bathroom, and after a quick search she has clothing on delivery… In two hours max. Shower, and to find the Pembroke Tea Room, but as she is stuffing the robe pockets with her things the note is stared at, the name on it. "Every. Bit."

The paper is lifted and if the flecks of gold in those dark eyes could light something on fire… Sara sighs and ties the robe off, heading down to enjoy afternoon tea and lunch at a small private table, the window overlooking the cityscape.

Sara called, but she hung up before there was an answer, finger spinning the phone like a child fidget toy while her other hand twists an end of that wet hair around fingers.

Jackie had debated at staying in the same Hotel, the Lowell is one of his /favorite/ places to get away from the City proper. Still, he knew.. well, assumed.. how Sara felt about him. The Darkness and the Witchblade had a weird connection he didn't understand, and figured why push any of it if he didn't have to that same night. Still, he was concerned, interested, and a little baffled that she came to help him the other night.

An important aspect about Jackie, few know, is that no one… ever… has come to help him. He has come to help others, he has learned to stand on his own, and in his entire life has never had someone put themselves at risk just to protect him. This has driven him to the point of self reliance that was almost supernatural BEFORE the Darkness… Now, it is in a league all it's own. Then Sara Cop came by, and shattered his perceptions

So, he's sitting on his balcony, looking out at the City from his Condo when his phone rings, and he considers not even looking. Still, there might be a chance, and when he picks up he sees a number he doesn't recognize. Yet, right as he's about to answer it stops. He frowns, considers letting it be, but shrugs a shoulder. Nothing risked, Nothing gained…

A text goes back.

The phone spins from the *flick* of finger on the frame, while the one planted on the center of the flat black screen is the pivot-point, axis in which her phone is spun from, but when a light forces the screen to light and fade out, a message arrives..

From the number she called..

Fingers splay in a plant that pins the phone like prey beneath the curl of 'clawed' fingers, hooked to gather the device up and look of throw it through the window. The number unnamed is already recognized, she does not have to enter contact info to know who numbers belong to. The crumpled piece of paper on her tray is eyed while the loose leaf steeped Chai is lifted and sipped, slowly. A finger sweeps the screen to waken and show the message, a finger tapping the screen in a metronome of timing (and debate).

Text: Jackie Estacado.

Text: Your hotel needs a coffee and smoke room.

Text: The croissants are dry.

Sara is wound as tight as her hair, never mind that right now she is ignoring the fact that she has missed six calls from the Precinct and does not care to listen to the voicemails. They couldn't be any worse than the once months ago about her Dad. Droplets of water wring from tips of hair over the screen of her phone, a napkin unraveled with a spill of 'Silver"ware over the draped table, clattering metal against a glass vase's base while she wipes it off.

Text: Smurf Tues White Stripes, believe 3ply…. (Auto assign/correct FTW!)

It's been awhile since Jackie has felt nervous about a response to a text from him. WTF is /wrong/ with him, and why does he even give a shit. She seemed as if she was as likely to shoot him as help him… and that thought right there, she /helped/ him for nothing other than to help him. THAT is why he is nervous. Well, the only other person that tried to help him is gone, left because of the Monster he was becoming, and here he is…

One, Two, Three buzzes, and he checks the wide screen of the phone on his small table. Yeah, that's me, my what… and what… He pauses, and he can't help himself but start laughing at the messages. Then a fourth comes in, and he is at a total loss.

Typing, deleting, typing, deleting. "Come on, Jackie. Get your head straight.." he grumbles to himself, and sends back

Smoke where you want. Who cares what they think.
I know a better place for breakfast.
I've got nothing on this one. Pikachu April Corduroy Frappuccino. Legit.

He finishes the last of his orange juice, and considers sending more until he sets the phone down. The Darkness is less of an influence in the light of the morning Sun, and his head feels clear now. Nope, time to just let the chips fall where they may.

Sara has a corner of the robe in her hand and is wiping the finishing touches off the screen furtively, the stare of the hosts and waitress not bothering her in the slightest while they see her there, toes splayed and braced, bare to the split of robe she is using as a /rag/, despite the fact that it is One Hundred Dollars - Off The Rack.

Uncivilized? Anyone else seeing Pretty Woman right now in their minds??

A final shake of the phone and she is viewing the text exchange on her screen, the last of hers making her squint, his responses…

Sara is not used to this… The compulsive reactions, her hand guided, and yet "allowed", because no one, nothing, has diverted the near-monomaniacal drive of Sara Pezzini!

But another stalagmite-shaped shard falls from a broken glass pane, a piece of the puzzle hitting the ground at her bared feet and shattering as she nearly loses circulation in fingertips with the wrap of saturated strand upon her finger.

The chill to the tip, the *tingle*, has her hissing as she re-reads and chides herself as well as regains circulation after her other hand sweeps over the keyboard.

Text: It is the law that it must be beyond 10 Feet from Public Entry or within approved ventilated space designated and approved -

Text: I am waiting on clothi -

Text: The screen got wet

Oh. My. Fucking. G…

Sara stares and then snaps her eyes towards the onlookers, the leer is enough to send the shuffling busily, or perhaps the reveal of the barrel of a gun in a strapped and holstered weapon peeking from the pocket of her robe as she crosses her legs and leans back, the window is opened despite how -cold- the air is outside.

"Miss… Pez-eenie?"

"Pezzini.." A rise of her hand, the phone eye'd and swept into her pocket as well, the tea only breathed in. Croissants untouched.

Clothes taken and elevator button pushed to take her back to yet another Strange (Inevitable) Tragedy.

Jackie walks past his bed, empty again, he shakes his head in chagrin since it's been almost a year since he's had anyone in it. Funny, he thought he'd die if he went a night, and now it's been 363 nights… not that he's counting. He walks into the kitchen, washing out the glass, and drops it into the dishwasher… is how form of compulsion.

His phone buzzes, he counts to ten before he reaches for it, and then moves to the couch to turn on the T.V. Kicking his feet up on the table, he takes a look at what he got back.

Normally he would come back with a snide remark to the first text, but he doesn't.. in fact, it makes him smile a little instead of roll his eyes. The next two make complete sense, but the third is almost too good to pass up something snarky.

Ok. Even the balcony? Room service. Got a great Green Tea with Honey.
I can stop by the breakfast place. Small deli. Local family. Croissant Cream Cheese w/ Strawberries.
Drop it in something?

The last is the most ambiguous he can be given the myriad of thoughts that came to mine, but he's not looking to push his luck that far right now. There's a pause, he sighs, and adds..

You ok? Last night was intense.
Definitely not entirely heartless, but socially awkward for sure. He heads back to his bedroom, and starts getting dressed. The Boss will want to hear from him soon, and he sure as hell better keep the fact he's talking to a Cop to himself.

Sara can feel every ~vibration~ of texts despite the pillowcase enfolding robe and its wrapping, the warmth that either ignites her, or maks er impasse…

Clothing is tossed on the bed in its plastic 'pressed' and "fresh" wrapping, lined neatly on hangar beneath a plastic (body) bag that barely disturbs the down comforter half on/off the empty bed.
Something she is used to, no tally marks!

Robe is shed and the desk is littered with her meager personal effects as if spilled from an Inmate Bag #1h8th15…

Several minutes her phone goes untouched as she dresses and a heeled foot hits the neutral toned carpeting, the bed remade with a toss of arm and grip like playing the game of Parachute… A pocket of air settling when the door shuts behind her.

Everything on her, everything checked, /cleaned/, and lightly bothered.
Text: I hope you got the tip.
Text: No. (It wasn't dropped…)

Stepping out of the swivelling doors of the Hotel the mass of disarrayed Tropic Auburn hits the near-noon light reflecting off windshields in street traffic, the tilt of her head casts hair over a bare shoulder to redirect her face from the cold funneled wind between massive buildings, the cigarette attempted to be lit several times…




A deep inhale…

The cigarette severed in twixt lands on the sidewalk.

A shake of wrist. "I seriously. Just. Can't."

Sitting in a Cab Sara is staring at the final question with a glare that reflects back at her with the texts behind it. *Tap… tap…*

Text: I'm hungry, the time is ticking. <PIC:> Cab Meter of price and -wait-.

Secrets? Jackie Estacado. The name is renown, the file is thick, bound to the Ruthless Family, but nothing 'tying him in place'.

Sara. 25 and exceeding placement as a Detective in Homicide and (Secret!) Division, Precinct 18 is no joke… It's a death wish.

TEXT: Intense? … And all I got was Loose Leaf Chai and shiny biscuits..


It's early, way earlier than Jackie likes waking up, but he couldn't sleep.. at least worse than normal.. and so instead of his suits he wears a t-shirt that says "FML Francis" and a Deadpool's Mask on the stomach with a pair of loose fitting jeans. He's about to head out for his own breakfast when the texts start coming in.

A shake of his head, and a quick response

Yeah. I take care of them.
Glad it's still working.

He's hoping in his own car when the the pic comes through.

225 W 35th. Coffee and Best Breakfasts. BRT. 10 mins.//

He's in mid drive when the last text comes in, and so he has his car read it to him. He hates texting and driving, he's a bit of a control freak, and so when he's not in control it irritates him. Still, he doesn't know really anything about 'Sara' other than that link between them that he can't explain. He's pulling into a Garage owned by the family when he finally decides to respond.

Looked like you had a lot taken out of you.
Didn't know if I should have taken you to a hospital.
Figured you'd want to keep your own secrets.
Thank you, Sara.

Sinple, but completely true. Maybe the first time he's told that in the last five or six years easy. Shades in place, Jackie walks the last few blocks to the Deli, and is curious if he'll see someone or be eating by himself tonight.


That's /not/ what Gangster's do…

The cab rides a curb as she stares at the text, flicks herfinger to the 'tabbed' research and Profile's… - Logging out while Voicemails remain ignored. It is Christmas Eve, and she requested a few days off.
The last couple of months stepping into her new position upoon a team meant for the even more questionable cases -
Those that leave bodies mauled, in pieces, 'unnatural'..

A heeled boot descends upon the sidewalk, laces riding over the slender crest of ankle towards leather-clad calf.

Th mate joins and she pushes up, fluttering the 'Wrap' of fur lined shawl, laced and tattered ends hanging to lash across the back of thighs in her slight lean to toss payment at the Cabbie and walk the additional blocks towards the Cafe/Deli.

Dark circles around her eyes are hidden behind Rims of Deflective Glass, pulled from banding dark auburn hair from her face. Has as many secrets that nobody knows!

Sara thumbs over her phone and responds at the Red Warning to Not Walk - Across from the Deli.

Text: I feel fine. Bed was too soft. Biscuits too 'flaky'. Tea too 'crisp'.

The moment of pause is enough top blink the crosswalk sign and she steps towards the opposing side, the Deli and seating able to view. Shawl slips from bae shoulder in her derailment and vigorous endeavor upon a small pale screen.

Text: Thank me…No. We're even…

Text: For now…

Mid intersection those amber eyes bridge the frame-line of glasses and 'lock'.

He's checking the last of the messages as he makes it to the door at the Deli. It's seat yourself, so he looks for a moment before his eyes land on Sara, and he removes his own Sunglasses as he walks in her direction. He pauses for a moment before sitting, "Hi, good morning…" pulling the chair out, and having a seat "…mind if I get this one? Least I can do if you had to spend money to come out here for a decent breakfast."

Despite what turmoil may be going on behind those eyes of his, Jackie is a consummate professional, and his exterior shows a Calm and Confident person. After a minute, though, the facade breaks as he has to actually focus on controlling The Darkness, and not allowing it to show here in the Deli. "So.." he breaks in, "..they've got great Coffee and Tea here. I go with plain Green Tea, and the Breakfast Roll, egg, turkey, cheese, on some kind of home made roll that's a little bit sweet. Maybe they use Honey on it?" He offers with a shrug, and furrows his brow before leaning back in his chair.

"I don't think we're even, Sara, but I don't keep score with people that help me out." Jackie finally comments on that last text, "You didn't have to step into that shit show. You could have called it in, and waited for backup. I'm guessing you have an idea, if not a file, on who I am, and What I do. Which means you helped me anyways." He shakes his head, looking a little chagrin, "I won't forget it. And I'm glad you're looking better. I was worried when I dropped you off last night."

Sara slips in without touching the door, a side-step between one exiting, and stepping between one entering, her fingers clutched still within the pointed ends of her Shawl that rolls tufts of that fur lining along the sharp line of her jaw.

Once she claims her seat opposite side of the table Jackie is, the Shawl is shrugged back to drop over the backrest of the chair her shoulders sink against in her unceremonious slouch.

One leg slings over the other, leather moaning in contact and protest while upper dangles lazily over the flooring of the Deli.

Jackie speaks and for a moment of several heartbeats her eyes meet his. No words. But she is listening. A part of lips…

Menu is drawn up. "Macchiato, add two shots…" Finger slides along the 'papyrii' paper menu of the Deli. "Bacon, Spinach&Garlic, with Gouda Biscuit." Confirmation in a sound nod when the menu is rested lightly upon the table top.

"Sugar. Honey when it all runs out." A loft of brows towards Jackie in a moment where every beat-of-pulse can be seen in a simple moment that falls into the Abyss of Cold and Calculated that Sara is, and has strived to be, above all obstacles.

Now… Here Lies Jackie Estacado:
Rocking forward, an elbow props on the small round table between them, arm lifting to cause the excess fabric of gypsy sleeves to fall away. A Bracelet falls towards forearm in the moment of flux where fingers curl to cusp her chin, captured on the contour of muscle, half-cocked…

"I did what was right… Which is not in your file, Jackie, but you did it anyway." A lift of index and finger taps just below the crest of cheekbone, where above those eyes are fully revealed to… guage…

"Worried…?" A small /chuff/ a redirect of eyes as fingers flick in a manner of an ethnic dancer, lowering only to roll tips over wrapped utensils and the binding of cotton fabric.

"We'll. Live." A pause and she looks back towards him, leaning back in a slow bend of spine against the chair and extension of high-waisted leather attire.

"I am not here for Files, nor there. I just have time to… Burn before Princess," It almost seems like it -hurts- Sara to say that *Name* of the toy fluffballDog. "Apparently needs picked up from the Groomers…" But the way her voice drops, her fingers gather a piece of that gathered napkin…

What the Fuck did she sign up for last night…?

Despite the Grit, it feels *Better*..

Even thought Jackie is trying, damn hard is he trying, he can't help but have his eyes roam the figure before him. There's something in his nature, he appreciates beauty, not like a leering idiot, but like a connoisseur of Art when they see something truly beautiful.

His lips thin into a line, his nostrils flare as he focuses, and his eyes move back to Sara's own. There's no shame in the fact that he just took in her figure and posture, because from his perspective he is appreciating the fact that she takes care of herself and enjoys wearing things that make her feel beautiful.

When the bracelet is bared, Jackie's eyes don't move to it, but there is that suppression of The Darkness again. There is a slight glimmer of green in his pale blue eyes, but his Will crushes it so fast it may be a trick of the light, "Yeah, worried. I've no doubt you can take care of yourself, but I didn't know what to do so I thought maybe sleep."

He orders his favorite, as suggested earlier, and there is a small smile that starts to grow on his features. "And you're partially right. I do what I'm told as long as it's in my boundaries. My Uncle knows that, and he hasn't tested because I'm the best in this City. I've put him in a place where he's almost the Boss of Bosses. He'll push me one day, and it'll be ugly for both of us." Jackie knows he's dealing with a ruthless scumbag, but everyone knows that Frankie Franchetti took Jackie from an Orphanage and raised him as his son… so Loyalty is on Jackie's list.

"Someone… important to me… asked me to do more than Destroy." Jackie starts to tell her, he's not sure why, "I /want/ to do that, but you don't leave the Family. I've given her enough money to get away from it, but I /know/ Uncle Frankie would find her." He's not asking for help, he's setting the stage, "So, I try to make sure none of the other Scum can Destroy anything 'round here."

"You need a lift to the groomers?" Jackie easily transitions out of business talk, more than happy it appears, "I don't have anything going on, and getting around here in Cabs is taking your life in your hands."

The paper mache wrapping over the utensils is torn, leaving faux-threads bare where uneven nails gather the "fabric" and peel it away as if from a more tender fruit. Sara's eyes are /disparate/ in their direction(re).

The piece of 'paper' is flicked and floats across the table, a distraction, but not one suiting enough, lightly tanned shoulders roll back, 'blades pressing along slats behind her lazed posture to press her forward enough to become upright as she catches his eyes - before they meet hers again. Fingertips pinch, those nails of labored evidence sever a crease into the confetti she cast forth before it hits the table, using one floppy edge to 'point' at him as she speaks.

Sara's tone is low, opposing hand clutching the seat beside her hip that rocks forward in her bend while eyes of bistre capture a 'light' of their own. "Everyone, anyone… I have ever known /pushes/ you to be better. But climb or fall…." Or reach out.. An echo to his words on the person of importance, dropping her lids to half-masted narrow, middle finger scrapes over index and that piece of 'machet' flits through the air between them -

"I am not here on business with you, Jackie. You have said enough…" A streak of the perpetual Detective in her struck through her like lightning, and then there was that Other… Opposing hand loosing the bracelet from the impressing line that circumference her forearm to have it 'dangle' at her wrist while she planted her palm to come to a slow stand.

"It's my life to give," A look at Jackie, nostrils flare and she pushes back in time for the service of her plate to be caught in her hand - a dance of steps to capture and move her around the Deli Host, back of thigh used to slide the chair back casually and gap a breath of space between…

"The hands that take it are the concerns." A lowering of voice then as she pivots upon spiked heel and peels a piece of her breakfast from opposing hand that holds the plate.

"I am sure you know how to get there…" The Groomers. The Wrong Turn. Hell.

How many cards are in a Hand, again?

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