Description: After being chased by punks, Masami finds himself pulled into a jazz lounge by none other than Velvet Blue. But this isn't any normal bar...
It's no secret that Gedo kids have a reputation for being tough. Which some other non-school punks take as an invitation. Doesn't help that a fair number of flunk-outs from high school, particularly if they're punchy and aggressive, tend to hold a dislike for those still in school. And let's also add to the situation that Masami very much still has the 'rich kid' attitude, and a little of that aloof air. So all in all, it's not too hard for Masami to run foul of such a group of high school fail-out punks around the city.
However, while he's willing to stand and teach a couple of them a lesson, when they start coming out of the woodwork with baseball bats, iron pipes, chains, and other improvised weapons? That's when Masami decides that discretion is the better part of valor.
Unfortunately Masami hasn't quite learned his way around Southtown. So invariably he ends up ducking blindly through the alleys of Southtown, near its business district. This is a really stupid thing to do, since he doesn't really know how to get out of them. Then again, he doesn't really have much time to think of a better solution, and he's not willing to test his odds against six or more thugs...
God knows Velvet Blue can recall high school, getting chased about by folks that wanted to get ya--it was an old story. Usually in his case it was more fun than terrifying, since he was usually faster than the people coming after him. Nothing like a good old chase to get the adrenaline up. However when the commotion is heard on the street, it's obvious this isn't just typical high school shenanigans. Japan was still a pretty wild place, and feuds between different gangs and even high school groups was not uncommon.
A pair of yellow cat-like eyes appear in the dark of an alley down which Masami heads into--a hand coming out of the gloom to yank him into the shadows! It's strong, at the very least--but as it gripped onto him did he feel... long nails? Ruh roh.
"Woah there, pardner, in such a hurry, huh?" Velvet Blue grins as he tugs the boy through a doorway into what looks like a... jazz lounge? Piano bar? It's definitely something out of the red lodge from Twin Peaks, but more with black and golds in the upholstry and decoration. It also semes to be made out of an old warehouse--there are still remnants of painted lines on the cement floor here and there. All the people lazing about here and there at tables are drinking, smoking--and all seem to have some form of demonic or animal attribute to them--some avian, others cat or reptilian. Some are in tuxedos, smoking jackets, other dresses, especially those of ambiguous gender. And speaking of...
"Let me close that for ya~" Velvet leans over and shuts the door behind Masami, the toughs outside would discover nothing but a dead end when heading that way.
It all happens so fast. The golden eyes appear, and Masami skids to a stop. "What the--?!" There isn't even enough time for Masami to finish that before he's pulled into... actuall Masami has no idea where he is. He does recognize the 'building formerly known as a warehouse' aesthetic, but that's about it. Of course, he being completely human, he can't help but look around in shock at all the non-human-looking sorts.
Costumes, he decides. They have to be costumes. His brain can't process any other answer right now.
But as the one who'd pulled him into the door reaches to close it, Masami can't help but stare. His brain seems to have forgotten how to process words at the moment. Either that or he's still catching his breath. He's surprised and out of breath, and his adrenaline's still mighty high. It's not makingit any easier to intellectually process things, either.
Velvet on the other hand, is just wearing one of the black spandex bodygloves and boots he typically wears out on more combat oriented affairs, plus what looks like a shiny satin violet qipao over that, which matches the color of the boots. Masami would likely also notice the yellow cat-like eyes, bat-like ears, and the blue spaded tail of his savior there, as the figure brushed his long black hair back and greeted the school boy.
"Was getting ready to step in to help you, but figured this might be better... you can see what we really look like, can't you?" he tilted his head this way and that, watching Masami's reaction to himself and the other patrons of the club. At the far end of the converted warehouse lounge a small raised stage was set up, lights strung around the stage illuminated a slender figure with deer antlers in a cocktail dress and heels, crooning into a mic.
"Uh oh boys, looks like we got a live one here~" Velvet grinned, turning to the other patrons who all murmured and clapped idly, as if to welcome Masami into the 'club'.
Oh boy does Masami notice all this weirdness about Velvet -- and the other patrons here, too. Given he's just gotten free of a pretty dangerous situation, he's rather lacking his usual poise here. He looks around dumbly at the applause, but the sound seems to reach whatever of his dignity still remains. He clears his throat and readjusts his uniform to sit properly on his body; there's a squaring of his shoulders, physical as well as mental.
"Ahem. Well. Thank you for your assistance," Masami replies. There is a somewhat aloof air to his speech, but not to the point of rudeness. Just he enunciates very clearly, and doesn't sound like a typical punk at all.
"Are you alright? I'm Velvet Blue, by the way--these are--" he gestures behind him to the patrons and staff, "Some friends of mine, you're in a hangout for people like us, you see, I didn't want to see you get beat up, so figured this would be better for everyone involved--do you need anything to drink? water? soda, maybe?" he turns to Masami. Yes, even in gay demon bar lounge, Masami wasn't getting anything alcoholic if he wasn't of age. Giving such things to minor just wasn't done!
"Very strong and stoic type, huh? I like that! You wanna take a load off?" Velvet turns and heads over to a pair of chairs around a small table. All the furniture in this place looks like it once had a life somewhere else, either places closed down, or they were discarded, or stolen. As a result many of the chairs and tables are of varying different aesthetics and styles, and usually even the chairs don't match the tables they're with. The ones Velvet sits down at are wooden, however not rickety--just seen some better days, the paint peeling here and there.
"Mi casa es su casa, or something like that," the strange performer grins, crossing their legs daintily.
Masami nods. "Yes, I'm all right," he confirms. "I was 'invited' to an impromptu street battle. Unfortunately there were surprise challengers, and I make it a point not to join such impromptu battles if there are more opponents than I can count on one hand. Particularly if they have weapons." Seems like Velvet got him out of things just in time, from the looks of it.
When he's invited to take a seat, he does so, following Velvet to the set of chairs. And then the drink offer -- "Soda, please. How much?" He does have a small stipend. It's not a lot, but he's been saving it. In fact, he starts looking through his pockets for what he thinks should be about the right amount.
"I know how that is, people always after ya, calling you up on the horn at all hours of the night trying to get you to do underwear commercials, happens to me all the time," Velvet snerks, eyes shut as he threw his head back for a laugh at that, then clapped a hand. A waitress and cigeratte girl came around, she was oddly tall, slender, with very rich tan dark skin and back-length silvery hair. She also had a pair of foot-long lapine ears sticking out of the top of her hair, and reddish brown eyes. She was wearing what looked like a dark ruffled maid outfit.
"Soda for my friend here--you okay with coca cola?--I'm sure that'll be fine," Velvet explained, and the girl went off, her stiletto heels clicking as she walked.
"Normal humans can't find the entrance here, it's kind of hidden, out of the way, exclusive club, and all that, you're probably the first normie in here in a while," Velvet explained, he shook his head at Masami digging through his pocket for change.
"Oh don't worry about it, it'll go on my tab, I work here on and off, so... what's your name, since I /am/ buying you a drink?" Velvet grinned, leaning a bit closer over the table. A few of the other patrons in nearby tables sighed and rolled their eyes, obviously they've seen this song and dance from Velvet before and his squirrely ways!
Masami blinks a bit, at the mention of underwear commercials. "I'm afraid I haven't quite had the same experience," he notes. Though he's pretty sure that if he'd seen an undewear commercial with someone this... 'unique' in it, he would have remembered! Then again... this is literally an underground club so... maybe an underground channel or something? Masami resolves not to think too much about it. He nods to the question of Coca-Cola, that's fine with him. And he offers to the bunny-eared waitress, "Thank you."
The words of 'normal humans' gets a blink. Masami looks around again, really LOOKING at the patrons. One can really only delude oneself so long. Assuming one is of sound mind. Though Masami's starting to doubt that, to be honest -- maybe he'd actually been beaten up and left for dead and he's dreaming this? Then again this 'normal human' thing could also be part of the charade. Either way, best not to question it.
He pauses then, at the mention of paying for the drink. "Oh. Er, thank you." He pulls his empty hand from his pocket, and then offers a polite dip of his head. "Masami," he offers. "It's a pleasure to meet you."
"First time on the wrong side of the tracks, I take it, it's okay, we all experiment at one point or another," Velvet nodded. Of course, this now made it ambiguous if the big joke here was that everyone wasn't actually human, or if they were just all... well, queer. Which was it?!
"Pleasure to meet you too, hon," Velvet returns the shake with a big of pressure, brows raising from the feel of Masami's hand. Velvet's own was well, soft and warm.
"You fight a lot I take it? You got fightan' man's hands," he withdraws his own hand with a grin, Masami would likely noticed the pointed-looking black lacquered fingernails.
The bunny lady waitress returned with a black frosted cup of soda for Masami as well as a light-colored soda for Velvet. Gotta watch the calories, after all~
"Thank you dear," he smiled to the waitress as she headed off. "She's been here for a bit, needed a job--always good to help eachother out, you know? So doy ou do much fighting?"
"Not... exactly," Masami replies. "I attend Gedo High School; it has a reputation for being essentially a reform school. I was... a little wild when I was younger." Which is funny, since he doesn't look that old now. Particularly if he's still in high school. "Though I will admit it's the first time I was set to get my butt kicked without a reason." Every time it happened at Gedo, it was to try to beat the stupid out of him!
Masami can't help a bit of a blush at the mention of his hands. "Yes. Gedo teaches the students martial arts, for the discipline it instills. I fight more with my legs, but my hands aren't completely useless." He has indeed noticed the pointed fingernails. But he's not quite sure what to say about it. They do look pretty dangerous. But Velvet doesn't seem like the type to be pleased with something like that said.
The soda arrives, and Masami nods to the waitress. "Thank you," he offers to her. Though he looks to Velvet again at the mention of helping each other out, and gives an affirmative sound. As for whether he fights a lot? "I try not to," he admits. "Aside from sparring, of course. Practice makes perfect, after all. I don't want to be unable to fight when I -do- need to."
"Gedou? Ooh, you're a bad boy, huh? I like that--I never went along with the rules either, but my talents took me to the stage," Velvet gestured around him, alongside their table a man in a smoking jacket that had ram horns sighed a little bit, 'Oh, not this again...'
"You see, I was destined for the limelight," Velvet went on, nodding--still listening to Masami's story, his bat-like ears twitching a little as he listened.
"I'd hope they're not useless, you're going to need them around here, for sure, the spire of flesh is still around, and who knows what is going to happen with that--you must be more careful to take care of yourself," he leaned back in the chair, creaking it, as he sipped his drink.
"So, is fighting your only pursuit, or do you have other hobbies?"
Masami chuckles. "A bit more bad than my parents were hoping, certainly," he notes. "That's how one ends up in Gedo -- being male, and being a complete nightmare to one's parents," he adds, with an amused tone. He notes the reaction of the man with the horns, but aside from a flicked glance of confusion, doesn't seem to react much to it. "Oh? I give props to anyone who can handle all the attention being a performer brings. I've heard it's stressful."
It actually takes Masami a moment to connect that in his head, the mention of 'taking care of himself'. And that bit before it. And once he realizes what Velvet's talking about -- or at least, what it sounds like -- he blushes. Which he kind-of-not-really hides with a drink from his glass. He's not sure what to say to that, really, so he doesn't. Better not to dig a hole he can't get out of.
But he does nod at the mention of other hobbies. "That, I'm still working out," he notes. "I'm partial to pottery, but I'm definitely no master. As you say, it's mostly just a hobby to keep me out of trouble. you know the old proverb about idle hands."
...Aaaaaand he instantly regrets that phrasing, remembering what had been said about his hands not being useless earlier. But that might also be part of the reason his hands are so rough, though he might not use them in fighting much.
Velvet off-handedly throws a crumpled up napkin towards the man with ram horns, as if they're used to this sort of exchange. They're all friends here, it appears, and they all do things to annoy eachother.
"Why thank you dear, I appreciate it," Velvet grins and bows his head to the Gedo student, reaching up to brush their dark hair back as they lean back against the chair. The performer is significantly tickled by the student's words.
"It can be tremendously stressful, after all," Velvet gestures over to horns. "Everyone can be a critic," he winks, before relaxing back.
"Pottery, huh? you like working with clay? Hmm... just designing them, or also decorating them?" he seems interested, "Are the devil's playthings, oh yes," Velvet grinned, and Masami could likely see the fanged eyeteeth sticking out over his bottom lip. Something seems to sparkle in the performer's eye as he stares at Masami.
Masami seems amused by the napkin throwing, and snickers quietly, raising a hand to his mouth and pressing a knuckle to his upper lip to mask it slightly. And at the mention of everyone being a critic. "Oh, that is very true," he notes. "Though sometimes that's for the best. If we never find out what's gone wrong, we never know what to change."
As for his pottery? "Well... right now there isn't much decorating going on," he admits. "I'm still in the learning stages, so all I'm really doing is shaping clay and taking it to another place to be fired. Unfortunately I don't have access to a kiln of my own just yet. I'm not actually altogether certain if Gedo would allow it, or whether they would even have space for it. It's not as though I could set it up in my room."
"Don't worry about him, he's an old goat," Velvet waves off the mildly-annoyed reaction of the older man with ram horns in the smoking jacket. Definitely from an older generation of guys than our two heroes here.
"Ahh, so you just started, I like it, it's important to learn something creative, and use it--we're only given a little spark of madness, after all," he nods. "I've been working on stage since I got out of college, never really took off for broadway, wasn't the right time," he sighs a little, but seems okay with it.
"I'd like to see your work sometime, at any rate, hon, I can call you that, right? It doesn't bother you?" he is careful not to offend the poor student.
Masami emits a rather ungentlemanly snort of laughter at 'old goat'. "I'm sorry," he offers, once he can speak without a laugh. "That wasn't polite at all." He's referring to his laughing, not to the statement in the first place -- he's the last person who should be scolding another for their behavior.
Though he does have some sympathy for the plight of Velvet. "That's a shame," he offers honestly. "Still, if you work here -- you did say something about working here on occasion, yes?" Once confirmed, he continues, "I'm sure some of the... patrons here would be interested in seeing you perform."
He gives a bit of a sheepish look at being called 'hon', but he shakes his head. "No, it's fine," he offers. "I have definitely been called more embarrassing things before." He chuckles. "Well, I could bring a few pieces to show you sometime. They aren't much. I haven't yet learned how to throw on a wheel, so they're just coil-built."
"I'm not always polite, dear, but I do like to be as nice as I can be, within reason," Velvet sipped at his soda. In all this excitement he'd forgotten just how thirsty he'd felt before drinking it. He shrugs a little in response to Masami's vocal vote of sympathy, but he does appreciate it.
"Aww, it's okay, sometimes fate just deals you another hand, you know what I mean," he smiles back at the high school youth. God, this probably felt werid, having such a good time with such a young guy in a place like this. Velvet felt a little fiendish for it, he had to admit.
"I do, I do shows sometime, you can come and watch me sometime, if you like--once you've been in here a bit you can probably find the entrance again, just be sure not to get caught by any of those punks that were chasing you before, alright?" he grins. "And I'd love to see your work."
"Oh, I'm sorry. I meant my laughing wasn't very polite," Masami replies. And then he adds, voicing his earlier thought, "I wouldn't exactly say I'm the best one to lecture others on their behavior, considering where I ended up. One generally doesn't end up in Gedo unless one has done something rather bad. Or a lot of lesser bad somethings that one shows no signs of stopping, in my case."
One could almost be fooled, really. He presents a reasonably polite appearance, sitting straight in his chair, keeping his elbows off the table, keeping eye contact with Velvet as he speaks. Then again this might just be the 'after' picture. Who knows what he was up to before he went to Gedo?
"Oh, I definitely know that feeling," Masami replies. "Though admittedly, I think my new hand is a bit better than my other one. Never play a 2-7 offsuit." He chuckles quietly. The mention of the door gets a nod. "I was going to inquire about that, yes," he replies. "You did mention it was rather difficult to find under normal circumstances. That I should be able to find it again is a relief."
Then again, he also has another question, "You aren't going to get in trouble for having shown this to me, are you? This isn't one of those 'you must never reveal our presence to them, or face the consequences' sort of situation, is it?" It sounds like he's more worried that Velvet may get in trouble than about getting in trouble himself."
"Oh, I know," Velvet grins in response to Masami. Apparently he wasn't offended in either case. "Eh, I wouldn't worry about it, plus, it could be interesting getting to know a 'bad boy' like yourself," Velvet smiled and winked at Masami, okay, flirting a /little/ bit, but still, he was trying to be as benevolent and gentlemanly here as possible!
"A suit? on me? pshh, I think not," Velvet likely understood what 'offsuit' meant, but he still took the opportunity to inject a bit of humor there. "Or, you could always call me before hand, if you're feeling a little lost," Velvet slips a card over to the Gedo high school student, it has his mobile phone number on there. It's just a white business card, really, though it has a little animal abover the number in the center--something with... two heads? and a snake tail? weird.
"Nah, not really, I mean, you were going to be visited by violence out there, I'll just have to explain things, besides, there's nothing wrong with us~" he giggles again.
Masami gives that sheepish look here, at the mention of being a 'bad boy'. "The purpose of putting a 'bad boy' in Gedo is to make him shape up," he replies. "Though old habits die hard, I suppose." He does still have a bit of an issue with his temper. But then, what Gedo student doesn't have some lingering behavioral issues? At least Masami isn't homicidal. Not that he'd be the first.
Here Masami actually laughs, though, at the mention of a suit. Though of course, he covers his mouth with his hand to do this. "Oh, I meant card suits," he notes. "When playing Texas Hold 'Em, if you have a 2 and a 7 of different suits, it's generally accepted to just fold, since your odds of drawing a card that you can play with that combination are very low." He looks at Velvet with an appraising look -- not checking him out, no. It's the mention of not wearing a suit. "Oh, I don't know... you might be surprised. They tend to lend a very businesslike air to one's overall look. You might try it if you ever need to look particularly businesslike."
He pauses as the card is handed over. And of course he examines the card. "Ah, thank you," he replies, with a dip of his head. "This is a beautiful design," he comments, of the card. Though the assurance that nothing horrible is going to happen to Velvet gets an audible sigh of relief. "I'm glad," he notes. "I'm accustomed to trouble, but I don't like bringing it with me to others who haven't asked for it."
"Well you seem to be doing a pretty good job of that so far, look at that posture, how respectful you are--I've heard a saying, is that you're only really living when you're improving, I think it works," Velvet blinks a little, then grins. "Oh, you meant a card game reference, yeah--I don't play too many of those myself, alas, though I suppose some of these sorts around here too," he looks about the lounge. By this time the woman with deer antlers had moved off stage, likely for a drink or a smoke break.
"Oh that? it's a little in-joke of mine, it's a Chimera, it had the head of a lion, a goat--and it's tail was a snake, I used to love Greek mythology when I was in gradeschool," he smiles thinly. It was a long time ago, that.
"Either way, we /must/ do this again, dear," Velvet is making sure Masami isn't gone so long someone tries to come looking for him, but also so that he's not present for the burlesque show that's likely about to go up on stage. Apparently maternal mode was engaged a bit in Velvet there. He'd usher him to the door with a smile and open the door for him, leading him back out onto the street.
Curiously, it's night out now, the street lamps were on. Wasn't it broad daylight when Masami came in...?
"Thank you," Masami notes, to the mention of him doing well. "Kazama-senpai would probably be glad to hear that too. But I have a way to go yet, I think." His parents still aren't talking to him, after all. Though he's not going to bore Velvet with his problems -- they've only just met! He nods as Velvet realizes he was referring to a card game. "I'm not much of a gambler myself, truth be told," he admits. "Though I've enjoyed a game or two, for points or candies."
Masami tilts his head back a little with a sound of recognition. "Ah, I thought it looked familiar. I think I remember reading a bit about them. I understand it's a medical phenomenon as well." Another long explanation he's not going to bore Velvet with. The thin smile, though, makes him think there's something more to it, but that should probably be a conversation for another time.
But then, there's a mention of departure, and Masami nods, standing up. Velvet probably has a show happening. "I've had a good time talking with you." As he looks out the opened door, though, he blinks. "That's odd. I didn't realize so much time had passed." But yes! He bows. "Thank you for assisting me, and for the drink."
Log created on 19:04:41 11/17/2018 by Velvet Blue, and last modified on 00:56:11 11/18/2018.