Description: A chance encounter at a noodle stand turns questionable Southtown policing... into a hope for the future! Also, an Italian woman is denied dinner.
An unusual warm spell has reached Southtown. Something to do with global warming, the polar vortex, NESTS's weather control satellites... who's to say? Either way, it's a short patch of balmy weather, a welcome relief to the lands which are often not centrally heated. It's almost 18 degrees celsius - practically steamy!
It's good for outdoor cooking, that's for sure.
The mysterious woman known only as 'Rose' has gone out for supper in an outfit suited for summer... in Italy, anyway. A tank top with a gauzy fringe over the chest; a miniskirt that mostly hugs the hips and only goes partly down the legs. Of course, she wore her heels, because it's actually quite possible she doesn't own any footwear that isn't a pair of red pumps.
She sits on the right-hand seat at an authentic ramen'n'dumplings stand, awaiting the preparation of a combination of both of these genuine treats. She has her hands folded in front of her, leaning forwards with her legs crossed and watching the preparation with interest.
Rose is of course aware she's getting some attention, which doesn't even require you to be a psychic. However, what she isn't aware of is that a couple of the people who have walked by didn't just take a scenic picture, but reported her for about four different crimes, ranging from 'public indecency' to 'she's obviously selling drugs!' through 'being the one responsible for that Softbank heist three months ago, didn't they say a woman was involved?'
But perhaps this was all according to her plan...
(no, it wasn't.)
It had been a few years since Chun-Li had to deal with minor crimes like this. All sort of things she used to do when she was in the Hong Kong police department, before her years in Interpol chasing terrorist and major criminal organisation.
Drug dealing, punny stealing, minor law offenses of all sort... It was all the things she didn't miss from her time as a lowly police officer. Returning to her root was definately a great way to show her some humility and Chun-Li's respect for her comrades only grows as she has to deal with all those small tasks.
Generally, the police officers were always in duo when they were out for patrols but due to staff shortage, some had to be out on their own. Chun-Li voluntered for this tasks, figuring she could handle herself well enough and had enough experience to deal with any sort of problem that could arise. As of sort, she was out and about in her police car, patroling Chinatown casually. Fortunately for her, it was a lazy day in this sector of town.
At least until she gets a call, "There has been a few complaints in Chinatown for a 10-2 and potentially a 11-3," Comes the voice on Chun-Li's radio. She picks it up and replies, "Alright, I'm on it..."
Seems like Chun-Li might have to deal with some half-naked hobo who sells drug or something. At least, that's what the calls were about : public indecency and drug dealing.
She drives her car to the indicated location of those crimes, until she notices someone. She must be the one, considering she's the only one there at this spot. Her car comes to an halt and Chun-Li gets off the car.
The chinese woman wore a pair of black pants, blue blouse and a heavy black belt with a myriad of tools on it. She even had her name tag on her blouse : officer Chun-li.
She approaches Rose's stand, a stern look on her face, "Enjoying your meal?" She asks, going for the diplomatic approach, "You got a license to have a food stand here, miss?" She asks.
Rose is not half naked at all!! Thirty percent tops. Actually she'd be pretty unremarkable at the beach. She IS a little remarkable here in Japan in December, but again: Polar vortex. The cold probably was all put into Kula... but that's a problem for another day.
Rose turns her head when someone comes up. She blinks several times, her lips pursing slightly as she looks upwards, eyes turning over the nametabg, the belt full of law enforcement accessories, and then up to Chun-li's stern-born face.
"Oh," she says, with a guileless little smile. "He stepped out to empty his wastebasket. It's not my food stall, I am simply waiting. May I help you with something, officer?"
Something about her, Rose thinks. But it's not a sense of 'that' power - what is it? A coincidence, perhaps, she thinks, not really believing in such things.
While Rose's fashion sense could be questionable in this part of japan, Chun-li hardly thinks it's worth noting as public indecency. At the very least, she has seen hookers with far worse outfits. It just felt out of place, perhaps classy and exotic for another part of the world? Or perhaps Rose was some kind of pimp? The outfit had that classy and flashy look, but it was unlikely.
The officer's eyes were slowly scanning Rose, assessing her outfit as she had those thoughts, gauging her for potential trouble. She kept a safe distance from her : just out of arms' reach. The chinese woman arches a brow at Rose's explanations, "He stepped out? The owner of this food stall?" Chun-li asks.
"Apparently there's been sighting of a suspicious woman around," Chun-li says. She glances at her and says, "I'd just like to know what you've been doing around, and if you're not doing anything here, I'd just ask you to move along," Chun-li offers.
Rose is not quite able to pick up on the details of the thoughts crossing Chun-li's mind, but she can certainly feel out sternness, concern for the law... a stern character in general, she thinks to herself.
She smiles. Why is she wearing lipstick, or is that just the light here in Chinatown in the evening? "Yes," she says, raising a hand to point - indeed, down an alleyway there's a guy in a vest dumping some garbage into a dumpster. "I do hope he comes back soon, I'd hate for it to be overcooked."
Her attention turns back to the stall proper. Maybe she intends to reach over and turn down the stove if it catches fire. "A suspicious woman?" she asks then. "Did you get a description...?"
For once, this isn't ironic.
Rose continues. "Well, I'd walked over here to do a bit of shopping but I didn't find anything that I wanted. As it was growing late I thought that I would have supper before returning -" Rose's voice skips a little.
She laughs, lightly. "I'm waiting on my supper, officer, that's all," she says, with another smile. Subtext: Not moving.
Chun-li heaves a soft sigh as she lifts her hand up to rub her forehead. She knows exactly what that means : potential trouble. Ignoring her would be a bad idea, showing off police officers aren't paying attention to people's needs and by what she had heard on the radio, there were many complaints.
It was also a question of having Rose respect Chun-li's authority. The law's authority. It wasn't a hard request, was it? "Look," Chun-li says in a soft, gentle voice, trying to be persuassive, "There are plenty of other places were you can have supper,"
Last thing Chun-li wanted to finish her day of work was some trouble. She doesn't elaborate on the description of the suspicious woman, figuring it would be pretty obvious Rose was the woman she was looking for.
She frowns at Rose and gestures with her hand to move along and follow Chun-li away from the stall, "Come on now, I'll show you some other spot where you can get a decent supper," Chun-li carefully approaches Rose as she tries to convince her to move... After all, if she keeps on being stubborn, she might have to give her a little ride in her car.
Rose frowns slightly. "I have already paid," she says, a bit more archly. "I apologize, of course, if -" She pauses, because now the stall owner is coming back!
He gets within a few paces when he sees a policewoman there. He gives Chun-li a second's appraising look, reading her badge, seeing perhaps the subtle lines of muscle.
He looks at Rose.
He goes into his stall...
And pulls down the cover. CLOSED
Rose lets out a frustrated puff of breath, glaring at the closed shutter for a moment. Adding insult to injury, the scent of cooking food leaves the air as that man takes Rose's paid for order off the stove.
Standing up, she puts a hand on her hip. "How bothersome... It's hardly welcoming to visitors, is it, officer?"
This was her last chance to actually prove Rose wasn't lying. The chinese woman glances at the man when he returns and then goes into the stall and closes it up. Perhaps it was a simple gesture because he didn't want trouble with Chun-li? Perhaps... But it put Rose in a rather bad predicament.
"Alright," Chun-li says with a slow nod of her head, "You're going to come with me and we'll find you some spot to eat.. Away from here, and everything will be fine," Chun-li says as she reaches out for Rose's arm, attempting to get a hold of her to guide her away from the stall and toward her police car. Hopefully, Rose won't offer much resistance.
Rose lets out another sigh, and seems to develop a resigned expression on her face, eyes half-lidded as if about to roll back even as Chun-Li reaches for her arm. She seems to be offering no resistance immediately.
Chun-Li's bare hand touches Rose's bare arm, as if about to put her in a princess hold and guide her to the jail. Rose is already estimating whether to call the Italian embassy or Alma to handle this, when -
Her breath catches. Chun-Li might feel a faint electric-static sort of shock, as if Rose had just been rubbing her hand on a fur or something to build a charge. To Rose this tiny purple spark, hidden by Chun's powerful-yet-authorative hand, is far more.
The vision runs through her; splintered, chaotic, but rippling together like broken glass in a zoetrope. Stomping feet, the smell of mold and darkness and mothballs, the boots, the words, the flash of light and evil intention --
Externally, Rose thrashes in Chun-li's grasp several times, like a dying fish that's just been landed. Her earrings jingle; her mouth gapes open. Afterwards, she sags forwards, momentarily overwhelmed.
A full second after this, she reaches up to touch Chun-li's hand.
"I am so sorry," she says, her voice and eyes wet with tears.
The chinese woman blinks a few times as Rose trashes in her grasp. Was she about to do a seizure, or was she faking something to try and get out of her grasp? It's hard to tell, but Chun-li only has a second to react.
She moves her other hands to try and get a hold of Rose, "Woah there, hang in there!" She says as she tries to support her and prevent her from hurting herself. Fortunately, it doesn't last too long and she returns to normal after a moment and stops trashing.
Chun-li offers Rose support, not sure what just happened, though she'll probably have to get Rose to an hospital, just in case.
Chun-li blinks when Rose touches her hand and speaks to her with such earnest sincerity. She notices the tears in her eyes and Chun-li seems obviously confused, "It's okay, it's over now.." She says in a reassuring tone, "I'll get you to an hospital, but everything will be fine now.." She adds.
Rose recovers herself, slowly. Of course, Chun-Li does have a bunch of dead weight in her arms for a moment.
"... I don't need to go to the hospital," Rose says, taking in a deep sudden breath and straightening herself up - getting one foot underneath herself, steadying herself against the policewoman.
Tears are on her cheek. Her hand squeezes Chun-Li's. "You're looking for 'him', aren't you?"
"For a certain man."
Rose's eyes, still damp, turn towards Chun-Li's own. Her lips curl up into a rueful smile. "This must seem horribly suspicious."
"Are you sure...?" Chun-li asks, narrowing her eyes. After all, she couldn't let someone who almost had a seizure out there but if she refused her help then she wouldn't force her.
Whatever Rose was talking about, it was obviously quite suspicious. Chun-li blinks in confusion, feeling Rose's hands tightening on grasp. "Look, I..." Chun-li says. That stern expression on her face seems to leave her a moment, skeptical about this woman.
She arches a brow, unsure. Was she just crazy or could she know something? Her lips curl into a faint smile and she says, "Looking for a certain man? I guess we're all looking for love in a certain way, aren't we?" She answers jokingly.
Rose smiles wanly.
"I suppose I'm being difficult to understand, as well," she says, even as she breaks that grasp of hers on Chun-li's hand, her other hand going to rest on her own hip. "But..."
She glances over her shoulder. "This is a rather poor place to converse."
Looking back to Chun-Li, she says, "I imagine that you've got many other demands upon your time, officer, and I won't intrude further on your needs. May I give you my card...?"
And with a twist of one wrist, she's pulled it out of -- somewhere. It's on a tarot-card backing, and is double-size, annoyingly so (but memorably, too!)
This whole conversation, from the time Rose actually started trashing like she had a seizure, felt unreal. That confident and stern look on Chun-li's face had been replaced with doubt and confusion and she obviously can't quite shake it off and regain her composure, as if everything that happened was beyond her.
She takes the tarot card for a moment, glancing at it from both side. She then looks up at Rose, "Wa... Wait..." Chun-li stammers. There was a bit of an hopeful, yet desperate glee in her eyes, as if she refused to believe yet wanted to so badly, "What do you know about him...?" She asks. Anything, just a little something to tell her this isn't a dream, that she might truly know something.
Rose smiles, a little sadly. She can see that shift, after all.
"What I know can't be told easily," Rose says. "Some of it is matters I fear I cannot reveal. But I imagine, if you want a sort of... confirmation, that I am not simply tricking you...?"
Rose raises one hand and gestures, as if to tug at her forelock lightly and move it to the side. But it's not her forelock - it is as if she were grasping the brim of a cap and adjusting it slightly.
A very specific cap.
"But," she says, "we are, I think, on the same side. If you should ever need my advice... please don't hesitate to reach out."
The card has several local phone numbers on it, but no address. (One, if investigated, is owned by Alma Towazu.) "I do fear I must take my leave now, Officer."
The woman's gesture and her mysterious words leave Chun-li quite thoughtful to say the least. She seems to snap out of it after a moment, her eyes wandering down at the card once more and the information on it, "Yes.. Move along.." She says with a gesture of her hand. She remembers just what she came here for, after all...
Chun-li seems shaken by all of this as she returns to her police car. She takes a moment to think about all of this and still glances at the tarot card. She shakes her head for a moment, "Nah, snap out of it Chun-li.." She says as she puts it aside and glances over at Rose from her police car, as if to make sure she'll move away.
Rose smiles, faintly. "I imagine we'll meet again soon." She turns then, sauntering off - she enters the flow of foot traffic, although she is easy to make out for some distance. After all, she's taller than average, and has that hair.
But, it seems, there's no disturbance.
The ramen stall guy opens his shutter window again. He has already eaten the food Rose ordered. "That foreigner gone, officer? Nothing but trouble!!"
Log created on 21:42:25 12/02/2014 by Rose, and last modified on 03:34:17 01/05/2015.