Burning Down Luke's Bar, Again

July 31, 2018:

No bars were harmed in the making of this log. But there is a lot of adult joking between Emery and Owen as they try to entice a flaming ghost chicken to let them light up cigarettes in the basement of Luke's new bar.

Luke's Bar

The brand new bar that is unopened.

Characters

NPCs: The Ghost of Grilled Chickens Past

Mentions: Kennis Papsworth, Harley Quinn, Luke Cage

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

Asking for help, Owen sucks at it. He reached out to Emery though on Friday night right after his fight with Harley. Heh. Normally a fight with someone involves a lot more explosions or stabbing than that. But normally a fight doesn't hurt so bad either. And it doesn't help that Owen is trying desperately to avoid his two main coping mechanisms, both drugs AND drinking at the same time. It's madness! Thankfully Emery proves a capable baby sitter (Owen's mental term for it) and he manages to get back to the program the next day and stay on track.

Not to say that it's going well for Owen. He looks even more of a mess than usual and is way more grouchy than his usual chipper, wise-cracking self. He's often sullen and humorless and quick to snap. It's not a pretty sight.

But after a few days Owen decides he needs to do something about his mood. And so he texts Emery.

Making a bad decision. Want to hang out?

And it's a mildly bad decision for Owen. He's down in Luke's bar, with a beer, playing darts. Of course it's Owen's version of darts where he's across the room and has to rebound the dart off a chair setup on the bar for that exact purpose.

*

The text is received as Emery was super busy, that is…folding towels like the neat freak that he is. There's a quick swipe of a thumb to unlock his keyboard and return the message quickly and efficiently.

Text me your location.

And when it is received, the bad boy of butler's pulls up about 20 minutes later. Dressed in a pair of comfortable designer jeans (black of course), a pair of doc martins, a long sleeved dark grey henley and a black leather jacket, he's got his hair tucked back and into a dark grey beanie, fingerless black gloves on his hands. There's the barest hint of scruff, somehow groomed though so its probably deliberate.

There's a long pause before he enters the bar and then stares for a moment. Then he holds up a brown paper bag. "Bagels and some random cream cheeses I knicked in me way out of the bakery."

*

It's a bit of a drama queen move, the whole vague-texting about bad decisions. Owen realizes this. He doesn't care. It feels like it takes less effort and that's what he's about right now. He pauses when Emery enters, stopping his throwing long enough to take a small sip of his beer. He's only on the first one, trying to make himself go slowly.

"Bagels?" Owen noticeably perks up at the announcement about baked goods. He mentally thinks back on what he's eaten today and has a hard time remembering anything outside of the candy bar or snack cake family. He sends his last dart soaring, it bounces off the chair and strikes the 7. Owen frowns, unhappy with the hit but that's soon forgotten as he comes to get a bagel.

"I haven't taken anything, or used. I haven't had any whiskey and this is my first beer."

Owen now well aware of Emery's ability as a human bullshit meter, takes advantage of it. It's not that he's defensive about it, or bragging about it, more wanting to clear up any questions before people ask.

*

The bag is handed over to Owen as Emery watches him make the throw with an impressed sucking of his teeth and nodding, idly he does tug the bag open enough to snag a bagel free for himself. There's just a quirk of an eyebrow and a soft snort as he shrugs his shoulder. "Good on ye mate, for provin' yet again, that ye were not born Irish?" The Irishman drawls with a shake of his head.

There's a pause as he just stares at Owen searchingly and then nods slowly. "So is it true that Master Luke made this place a smoke free place and all? Like…I dun get that bit about this whole generation of people who are hung up on teh whole 'no smokin' in bars or pubs' ting."

*

Owen chuckles at the response to his declaration. He shrugs it off and says "Yea, rehab talk. Apparently I'm doing that now?" But of course he's also relieved that it's not going to be the main topic of conversation. Maybe that was part of it? Tactical strike on talking about sobriety issues.

He snags a bagel, and pulls out his very own flaming boomerang knife (well not currently flaming, or returning to him, so it's just a knife) to cut it and smear it.

He sighs, "Yea. Apparently he's got some Latverian Fire goddess in the furnace?" … Not exactly. "It won't let anyone but Jess or Luke have an open flame." Owen then thinks about it for second.

"Wait a minute.. Then how is there a burning ghost chicken down there?" He looks at Emery triumphantly. "Follow me! And don't act like you haven't always wanted to see Luke's hot cock." Owen can't even take credit for that. Luke may have texted him that, but Owen's not above recycling a joke.

With the bagel half shoved in his mouth, he wipes his knife off on a napkin, grabs his beer and heads for the basement.

"Feel free to grab a bottle or can of beer, just mark it on the sheet for inventory."

*

Almost delicately, Emery is ripping a chunk out of his bagel and shoving the piece of bread into his mouth as he chews slowly and nods. There's a swallow and another one shoulder shrug. "Right then. Good. Stay clean or I'll waterboard ye with vodka and connect the game 'Operation' to ye testes and have a go at minor surgery." There, obligatory sponsor talk given.

On to the topic at hand. His eyes just narrow as he hears about the goddess in the furnace and smoking rights going to only two people. Then the mention of the ghost chicken has him both intrigued and worried as he takes a bite out of his bagel. There's a pause before he eyes Owen for the cock joke and clears his throat. "As much as I enjoy dick, I'm not exactly tryin' to see a flamin' one." He drawls softly. "That would be of no use to me personal wank bank…"

But he is indeed, following. He reaches into an inner pocket though, and pulls out a silver flask to take a swig. He is following. If only to be a responsible party. (Not Really)

*

Owen pauses to turn, take the bagel out of his mouth and reply, "Don't even joke about that. It sounds like a hell of a party and I would so fuckin' be down for it." He sighs wistfully at the thought and then mutters something under his breath and heads for the basement stairs.

Owen shrugs at the fact that Emery isn't that into it. He then holds up one finger and disappears in a flash only to reappear with the bag of bagels. "He might be hungry.", except Owen has once again stowed his bagel in his mouth so it comes out more 'Hmm mmiiii mmmeee mmuuummrrry'

And with that Owen heads down the stairs, bag in one hand, beer in the other and bagel stuffed in his face.

*

"Yeah..that probably would be more of a party and…I may have once upon a time promised Miss Harley a threesome, but that was before I found out the man she was talkin' about was /you/. So, that ship has sailed boyo." Emery drawls softly and shakes his head as he follows after the younger man.

When he reappears with the bagel, the Irishman just sighs softly and blinks a few times as he translates that. "…Master Luke's penis or the eternally frying chicken?"

*

Owen laughs and then it peters off to a forced chuckle. He looks back at Emery with a glare. He plucks the bagel out of his mouth with his beer hand, and replies. "Thanks. While we're bringing up things I won't be doing any time soon, maybe you could do some smack and tell me how good it feels? Or," Here Owen's lips twist into a slightly cruel smile, "How was your high? The other night. The meeting of the spandex crowd. You had just … whatever you called it. Hadn't you?"

It doesn't take a detective like Jess to know that Emery was different that night. Not just the accent, but there was more of a spring in his step too. If Owen hadn't received the letter where Emery confessed his reaping and likened it to Owen's own drug use, he might not have put it together.

The joke about bringing bagels to feed Luke's dick brings a genuine smile to Owen's face though and he looks away. Now in the basement he looks around for the fiery poultry-geist. It doesn't take too long for it to appear. It's a black and white speckled rooster.. of sorts. Except the black appears to be soot hanging in the air, the white flecks ash falling away to dematerialize in the air around it.

Owen sets down his 'meal', pulls out a pack of cigarettes and places two in his lips before pulling out a bagel and rip off a chunk. "C'mere chicken. I need you to light my smokes."

*

"Careful there lad, I haven't touched your former boo thang in any untoward manner. Put away the pussy snarl." Emery takes another swig of his flask and just stares at Owen at the mention of the other night and he just tilts his head to the side for a moment considering how to reply to that. "Dun ask questions ye dun want to know the answers to. One day we'll have that conversation, when ye be ready." There's a wistful twist of his lips. "Ye ask me seriously one day, when ye want to know. I've nothin' to hide."

On to better things. Or weirder things. Emery just opens his mouth and closes his mouth when he sees the…rooster. No, the burning chicken. He crosses an arm over his chest and just watches Owen approaching the being. "Mebbe ye should've brought some alcohol to pour on it, get a good flare goin' in return for a good drink…" Because this could not go wrong at all.

*

Owen snorts in annoyance. "I ain' worried about that. I just don't exactly want to talk about her right now is all." *DING* That's a lie. Emery would easily pick up on the fact that despite Owen's tone and scowl and grousing, he does want to talk about it.

"I…" Owen starts to say that he does want to hear about it. Then he turns back to the chicken and says quietly, "Yea. Not right now." The last thing he needs to hear about it anyone getting a rush of any sort when it's all he wants.

Which might explain why he's currently trying to feed bits of bagel to a ghost chicken that seems more interested in roosting on the furnace than eating bits of bagel.

"Are we going to pretend like you didn't bring a flask there 'top o' the mornin'?" Yes, any Irish phrase apparently will now substitute fine for Emery's name. "How bout you share it with the Grim Cheeper over here? And see if it blesses us with a light?"

*

"Have I ever /really/ given a shite about what ye didn't want to talk about?" Emery has to ask incredulously before taking another swig of his drink and shaking his head. "

*

"Have I ever /really/ given a shite about what ye didn't want to talk about?" Emery has to ask incredulously before taking another swig of his drink and shaking his head. "I tink ye do need to talk about it, and I'm willin' to listen. But…"

He looks back to the ghost chicken guardian and then back to Owen and then back to sprite. "I understand if ye dun want to look and sound like a pouty and disgruntled sop rag in front of your new friend." He just holds out his flask to Owen with a challenging lift of his eyebrow. "Its all yours. Make sure ye douse it nice and good."

*

Owen smirks at the question and shrugs in agreement that no, Emery doesn't care about what he says he does or doesn't want to talk about. "Yea, well. Quick version, I fucked it up. Longer version, it was really good but we're both soaked in capital I issues. And I fucked it up." He takes the flask and take a drink of it. Only remembering after that he wasn't supposed to do that, oh well. He then holds it out towards the ghost chicken and pours out a few drops.

Before the first drop even hits the floor the bird wooshes over and pecks at it, as if drinking, but it sets the drops on fire and then the bird is trying to sit on top of the held flask that Owen then drops.

"Shit!"

The liquor spills out and is quickly set alight by what appears to be a quite happy bird. Owen, first making sure that it doesn't look like the whole place is about to go up, leans over to light both cigarettes. He hands one back to Emery and exhales out some smoke blissfully.

"The Colonel, Burny Sanders here is cool with it. He understands my need to vent my manly emotions in a healthy manner." Owen takes another drag on his cigarette before starting in again.

"Fucking Joker. And his fucking chatter. And … seriously, she just needed me to not be a raging asshole about this. And I couldn't. I thought I could." He sighs and takes a swig of his beer.

"I couldn't."

*

…and Emery can just watch it all unfold, arms folded over his chest as he watches his flask be sacrificed in return for two cigarettes being lit. He even offers a soft applause. "Here I was hopin' you'd lose your eyebrows so that Kennis could start practicin' drawing eyebrows in usin' your forehead." But he takes that cigarette, taking a drag and exhaling a cloud of smoke. There might be a hint of a dreamy smile tugging at his lips.

He's not getting that flask back, and he'll have to deal with that at another time. And by deal with it, ask Owen to figure out how to get hit back.

He takes another drag off of his cigarette, exhaling slowly through his nose like a thoughtful dragon before he finally replies. He throws his best guess out there. "Somehow the ex got under your skin and made ye feel like mebbe she was comparing the size, color, or shape of your dangling bits and just settling or playing ye for the time being until she could back on that good insane asylum polished clown D? Then you probably did somethin' dumb as fuck like subtly accuse her of this because ye were feelin' insecure and doubtful and scared. And because ye both are pretty much always 2 cracks away from shatterin' due to the stuff you've been through, it somehow escalated and now if ye want a beautiful and painted lover to make ye feel like a whole man you have to put on a plastic glove and paint a face on it?"

He takes a thoughtful puff. "…am I even close?"

*

Having a cigarette and beer is not exactly the high Owen's been after but boy does it go a long way to helping him feel like himself again. And yes it's a little worrying how much of his identity is wrapped up in it, but he pushes that far too self-aware thought aside and just enjoys this scene, basking in the light of the fire chicken. The fire chicken that is either dancing or trying to hump the flask.

"Please don't let Kennis watch any drag shows, cause you know she'll be wanting me to shave down and act like her life sized Ru-barbie." And Owen also knows that somehow he would say yes to this and he rather likes his body hair where it is.

And then Emery starts 'guessing' about how it all went down. Owen at first cocks his head curious as Emery starts to fill in rather capably or at least close enough some of what happened. But then there's a whole bit about painting a glove? Owen's face tilts the other way and he just says, "Seriously. Every time I think I'm freakier than you, ya go and out do me. I have never used paint or makeup in my solo sessions." And that is the honest truth apparently.

"But yea. Something like that. And there was other shit. Bigger shit. She's in the life. I'm tryin' t'get outta the game. That song and dance don't help." Owen takes another drag and then shakes his bagel over the ghost bird. Poppy seeds are quite flammable actually and it seems to appreciate the burning black dot shower.

"How'd you know? You got some half crazy exes with full blown crazy exes of their own in your past? Or you got some mind-readin' shit you failed to mention before."

*

The Irishman, just rolls his shoulders and moves to settle down on the floor, basking in the light and warmth of the God of Two Pieces and Peppers.

*

The Irishman, just rolls his shoulders and moves to settle down on the floor, basking in the light and warmth of the God of a Two Piece and a Pepper. He taps some ash out and chuckles softly. "She still tinks make-up is a bit silly, unless bein' used for warpaint. But give her time." Emery drawls softly and then he rolls his eyes with a snort. "I've got quite a few more years on ye, luv. And I've seen some seriously freaky tings in me time. People had to repress alot more back in the day. They got creative, sometimes too creative."

Then back to the conversational topic at hand and he idly scratches his cheek, cigarette brought back to his lips as he inhales sharply and tilts his head back to exhale a plume of smoke. "Mm. I have alot of partners, boyo. I've had alot of partners. Seekin' comfort and relief and likin' to share in somethin' beautiful and enjoyable and all. I've been attacked by alot of crazy exes of partners. I've been attacked by partners who thought we had a relationship that could qualify for having an 'ex' status." There's a long pause. "But I know because ye 'ave so much bad shite to work through. Memories, both old and new. That ye dun want to risk bein' hurt again by someone else when ye be doin' such a good job at hurting yourself and other people as it is. So, being a fuckwit, you probably deduced that ye made the right call in being shook up and lashing out. All she really needs is someone to care about her and be willin' to take care of her not expectin' anyting in return." He taps some ash off his cigarette.

*

Owen uses his foot to nudge the flask, letting out more of the liquid for the bird to swirl into it's happy flames. The fire isn't spreading and the flask should be fine once it's not engulfed in flame.

"Oh goodness I don't want to think about old timey folks beatin' it to some hot ankles they saw once."

And then Emery is talking a little more about his history and Owen is at least good enough to shut up and eat some more of his bagel and smoke quietly.

Owen makes uncomfortable grumbling noises at the part about him having stuff to work through. It sounds far too much like sympathy for his taste. He sighs and says, "We weren't gonna last. We both knew it."

Didn't they?

"For the longest time we didn't talk about anything real. Just in case it … broke what we had." He chain smokes to light up his next cigarette before offering the butt to the poultry pyre.

"And she's all in on that life. I'm trying to get out…" Why again? Why couldn't he join her? Oh right. Because he'd probably never stay sober otherwise. And it's only a matter of time before it gets to him. He doesn't voice those thoughts though.

"But don't worry. I know I fucked up a good thing."

"And wait, why would I be bringing bagels for Luke's dick? Is this another one of your old-timey sad jerkin' tips? Because if you ruin bagels for me, I swear we'll be fighting."

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