Description: Four humans and a vampire meet at the casino on Zack Island. Sada and Jezebel stir up grudges, Eliza watches, Jezebel drinks, and it all goes over Johnny's head.
After all these mishaps and shenanigans in bikinis, Sada Asai is pretty glad to be able to do something which is
B. does not involve getting ground into the ground by other teenagers or Dr. Richard Tran, M.D.
C. near the liquor
Even if it's also
D. Somewhere where Zack sings while being all HO HO I'M MISTAH FUNKY NEW DAY NEW DAYYYY (NOTE: Sada hates most things and her opinion should not be construed as an authoritative statemet on Zack's actual Funk Quotient. Do not accept Funk Quotient readings from the general public)
and E. only denominated in Zack Dollars.
Sada was issued a flapper-style black dress, complete with faux pearls, spangly little cap, and various other accoutrements by the Zack Island Board of Ridiculous Costumes. Her lipstick is starting to turn a weird shade of red after long exposure.
For this exact moment she's circulating around the blackjack tables, possibly trying to figure out just how the game is played before she puts her butt down and starts ponying up Zack Dollars. Also, despite being 17, she has acquired both a glass of champagne and a cigarette holder, which shows the inherent sinfulness of Zack Island - LANDFORM of LEWDNESS, OUTCROPPING of OUTRAGE, VOLCANO of VENALITY.
Johnny is hoping today, at least, is free of pirates, double Asian doctors and furries. He just wants to check out the tables, drink a lot and hit on women who aren't underage. It was only after the infamous boat part that he realized the Sada lady was not quite a lady. After screaming for almost an hour and taking multiple cold showers, Johnny is back in action, hoping his PR lady doesn't catch wind of him accidently hitting on a high schooler and taking her for a jetski ride.
Today he wears a fashionable brown blazer with a cream-colored collared shirt with the top button loosened to just give a hint of his chest. He has on dark brown slacks and a belt that, yes, has a buckle that says 'CAGE' in obnoxious gold. Completing the outfit is a pair of leather Italian casual-wear shoes. He is drifting towards the card and dice tables; those slots are for suckers. In his hand is a glass of rum on the rocks.
There are already a few people seated at the black jack tables when Sada arrives in her fancy dress and shiny hat. She draws a few looks from various of these individuals mostly because her outfit isn't really in keeping with the beach theme of the island. While the average amount of skin on display here is significantly less than the rest of the place almost all of the gamblers are still dressed in tropical attire sporting gaudy Hawaain shirts, colorful pareros, and other more casual choices.
Almost. One person in particular is dressed far beyond the occasion, outshining even Sada's elegant fashion by leaps and bounds. Eliza wears her typical garb of choice, a tight red and black outfit that looks like a corset and a Victorian era dress fused together then were separated into their component parts leaving her sleeves and stockings detached to bare more of her pale skin.
The vampiress gestures casually with one hand, dismissing a pair of strapping young lads who had been hanging on her every word with obvious desire in their eyes. They don't even bat an eyelash at the command and quickly vanish into the crowd leaving the ancient creature to her own devices once more.
An palpable electric tingle radiates through the crowd as she turns her gaze outwards into the casino, her mere presence sending shivers of both inexplicable pleasure and apprehension through the room. Her lips purse up into a bored little pout as she searches out something that might entertain her further. When she gets to Sada, she stops and a faint ghost of a smile takes its place.
Practically gliding across the room, Eliza moves to take a seat beside the young school girl. A small wad of Zack Dollars is produced from her dress, which has no pockets so where it came from is anyone's guess or fantasy, and she places them down on the table. Ignoring the dealer, she instead focuses her alluring smile on Sada which magnifies her presence even further.
"Good evening, child. It would seem we are both a bit out of our element here."
Oh, she has the horns too. That's a thing.
Johnny Cage might be free of a lot of things.
But Lightning Spangles was not one of them.
Unlike her much more fashionable companion, the actress was dressed in the exact same cowgirl getup as she always wore in public. Blue jeans, red vest, and all-american rhinestone studding. She was always Lightning Spangles, always. And she was always excited to be seen with Johnny. She always wanted to be seen with Johnny. Johnny was very important to her.
But she was not very excited about where she saw Johnny.
The cowgirl nearly runs through the casino, as she spies Johnny Cage from the entrance. She didn't want her Dillo to ever leave her. She never wanted her Dillo to go away. Nearly bumping into a pit boss, she finally reaches her partner in Dillo. "Well lands sake, Johnny! I thought I wouldn't have found you! What brings you here to this den of sin!?" The actress asks pleadingly, gasping for air. A smile spreads across her face as she turns her head towards... towards a woman with horns. She briefly focuses on her, before focusing on something MUCH more important for the cowgirl.
"Is that teenager drinking!?"
Sada totally looks older than 17 in that vague way some Japanese women have of having very good skin complexion. She probably does it with a vinegar bath.
She also doesn't quite fit in with everyone else. She, as a teenager, knows this feeling well, and chews on the stem of the cigarette holder like she's Audrey Hepburn. There is a key difference here, of course: Audrey Hepburn was a good person, Sada is --
Overshadowed by the sudden electrifying presence of Eliza.
Who calls her 'child'.
Sada downs her drink in a single swig to look even cooler and more adult. "I suppose that's true," she answers sweetly. "Perhaps we should try out this game here... It's simple enough, I think. But before we begin, oh - Hold on - Let me wave JOHNNY over."
Casually name dropping the famous. Hell yeah, she thinks, before standing up on the balls of her feet and calling out, "JOHN~NY!~ Come here --" She takes several steps towards Johnny and Jezebel, even as a convenient slate of seats starts freeing up at the blackjack table for some enigmatic and mysterious reason (the horns.)
"Johnny!" she says, coming up near him and beaming.
Sada's gaze turns towards the cowgirl.
"Oh, do you want to bring your sister with us? We were just about to give the blackjack a try. You simply /must/ join us." Sada puts a hand on Johnny's arm to tow him over to the gaming table in question.
Johnny happens to see the blackjack table where Sada and the ravishing looking lady are. Well, hello. Now there was someone Johnny could spend an evening with. Not like-
Then Jezebel finds him. Johnny inhales deeply through his nose. He was hoping to avoid his partner's attention for...ONE night. Just ONE night. He was starting to find her a bit clingy. Okay, maybe more than a bit. But he didn't want to be rude. "Heyyyyy, Jezebel, what a coincidence," he says smiling. Coincidence his ass. "I was just about to-"
Oh christ now Sada is coming over. Johnny keeps his wide, toothy grin plastered on his face. He suddenly puts his arm around Jezebel's waist and holds her tight. "Hi Sada, hey you know, you never told me you were in high school. Which I had no idea about. Since you look very mature and refined. That must happen to you a lot. Like all the time." He laughs when she mentions a sister. "Oh, nah, this here's my partner, Jezebel, the great Lightning Spangles of America. We're enjoying an evening out at the casino. Yep."
Now in a pickle, Johnny brings Jezebel over to the table, still holding her. He is going to order a lot of drinks. He tries to also not be led by Sada, taking his own seat and everything. He gives the horned lady a nod. Wait horns? Nice hair decs. "Hi. I'm Johnny Cage. Yes, THE Johnny Cage."
A hint of amusement twinkles in the depths of Eliza's scarlet eyes. She knows full well that her young new aquaintance isn't even in her twenties yet. The quick quaffing of the alcoholic beverage is a reaction that she has seen many times in her life and she knows full well the intent behind it. Humans seem to put a great deal of value on trying to be older, atleast until they realize that time passes much faster than they had expected, at which point they try to be young again. It's an ironic quirk but one that makes them predictable.
The vampire opens her mouth to answer Sada's suggestion but closes it again when she moves to call her friends over. Johnny's name and fame are both unknown to the ancient creature, having been asleep for the better part of a century during her last 'nap, but she just smiles and inclines her head at the girl.
The arrival of the actor sends a bit of a stir through the other onlookers. A few cameras flash in the background. As soon as he takes his seat, one of the serving attendants rushes over to, well, attend him and get his orders.
Eliza remains unfazed by this new arrival, simply crossing her legs one over the other, while her arms likewise do the same atop the table. Her presence remains a dominant part of the background despite Johnny's clout and just as many people around them seem drawn to her presence as they are to his despite her name being completely unknown.
"You don't say," she offers in reply, her smile diplomatic yet still compelling as she speaks in a heavy Romanian accent. "Perhaps I should feel honored? You certainly seem to have quite a few admirers."
Lightning Spangles is about to say something.
And why wouldn't she say something. That alcholic girl was now coming towards Johnny; and what was worse, she seemed to -know- Johnny. And now she was trying to invite her Johnny to join in gamble, booze, and whores? Already people were taking pictures of them. And what was worse, that horned German cosplayer was giving eyes to Johnny. Lightning Spangles had something to say.
But Johnny, instead, holds Lightning Spangles by her waist.
And Jezebel just -blushes-
Instincively, Lightning Spangles wraps her own arm around Johnny's arm, clutching him so tightly as she face flushes. Giggling pours from her lips, as she nuzzles her face into those incredible biceps. "Oh, we aren't brother and sister~" She corrects Sada, looking up towards Johnny's eyes, smiling. "Johnny, how about you tell this girl about what we are?" Jezebel squirms a bit.
Why did she feel so squishy?
"Oh, well," Sada says to Johnny with a warm smile, "Seijyun is a renowned institution, and I'm proud to represent it in this conflict... I suppose it's very Japanese, so you..."
She trails off as the smile turns to ice on her face.
A wintry breeze brushes over her hair. Casinos are always over-air-conditioned.
"Please," she says, "tell me what you are... Johnny."
"We're Lightning Spangles and the Hoedown Dillo, of course!" he says, grinning at Jezebel. "Right??" He then refuses to pursue this topic any further once they sit down. Jezebel and the mysterious Romanian lady on either side of him. He waves to the cameras. He did notice, however, that the other lady seemed to have a powerful presence. He himself could feel his attention being tugged towards her and not the other two. He puts some chips down to enter the game and orders some more rum.
"Alright, let's play some blackjack!" he declares. Looking at the Romanian, he asks, "So what's your name? You seem to be a pretty big deal here, too. You in movies? Theater, maybe? No wait...I got it. Singer!"
"Eliza," she responds, inclining her head towards the actor. It's a small gesture but carries with it a feeling of great weight as if someone very important had just bowed. "And I am afraid to disappoint but I am no one so important as to be recognizable. Just a... simple tourist enjoying a vacation."
When the waiter returns with Johnny's order, Eliza places one of her own, not even bothering to look at the young man. He just kind of turns to her as if somehow aware that she required his attention then vanishes in a flash to fulfill the request.
Johnny's partner gets a bit of attention from the vampiress as well. It would be pretty hard to ignore someone as spangly as the cowgirl particularly at such close quarters. Her eyes half close in a lazy glance and that alluring presence shifts from the actor to the children's show host as if a spotlight has been turned upon her.
"Lightning Spangles? I am afraid I am ignorant of this title. Perhaps you could englighten me over a game of cards?"
Sada's icy shift in demeanor does not go unnoticed and the faint smile Eliza bears widens almost imperceptibly at the change. Oho, doth she detect the seeds of envy? This could be quite entertaining.
Lightning Spangles blocks out the implications of what he didn't say. Jezebel was shoved away, shoved into a corner where she wouldn't get hurt. But Lightning Spangles smiles, immune to the cutting chill that the teenage girl was saying. That grin intensifies as she stares straight back into Sada. A small look, that told Sada that him being her Hoedown Dillo was more than what SHE would get. An invitation of cards is issued.
"Yes, lets play Blackjack!"
Lightning Spangles doesn't hesitate, as she releases Johnny to come to the table. "You've never heard of the Lightning Spangles Showup Hoedown?" The actress says, looking wide-eyed at the mysterious woman. "Well, I'm the High Kicking, All-American Hero! Well, at least that's the character I play." Jezebel responds, exposed for a moment. "I am an actress and a martial artist, just like Johnny. But I'm nowhere near as good as Johnny; but as it so happens, I recently earn the Western Pro Championship Belt!" The cowgirl laughs a bit as the cocktail waitress comes back around, armed with Johnny drink. Jezebel suddenly frowns, furrowing her brow at the poison. "You shouldn't drink, Johnny." Lightning Spangles mutters. "Don't you know that liquor can really ruin your c-career?"
A small stumble from the All-American hero.
Sada's hand clenches. The black stem of the cigarette holder snaps. One end of it flies off and lands in someone's drink, possibly Zangief's.
A horrible volcano begins bubbling over in Sada's guts, though her face is made of stone. This horrible American woman, with her big american butt and her stupid American twang...
And she's calling Johnny - the man SHE met, who made HER feel wanted and desired after that similarly huge-buttocked Mexican woman vulgarly made her feel ashamed and stupid and ugly by throwing a drink on her and laughing in her face - her... her DILLO.
Whatever a DILLO is. It sounds like some horrible innuendo to Sada!! Eliza may be able to sense the killing intent that drips off of Sada Asai in this moment, and it doesn't fade when she stalks over to sit down, even as Jezebel explains herself to Eliza. Naturally, Sada is on the other side of Eliza, requiring her to glare daggers at Jezebel while eclipsed by Eliza's...
"No simple tourist is that gorgeous," Johnny says to Eliza. He notably doesn't even take off his shades at the table. Cards are dealt, and Johnny flips his over: a 9 and a 3. "Hit me," he says as he starts sipping his drink.
Then Jezebel starts in. Johnny suddenly remembers a little thing he read in the papers...oooh. He sucks air through his teeth and then smiles with assurance to his partner. "Hey, I'll be fine. I'm all about moderation." He hopes she doesn't know about all the weed...or his occasional dalliance with harder substances at certain raucous celebrity parties. "A Shirley Temple for my friend here, waiter," he says, ordering for her.
Eliza tilts her head ever so slightly to the side, a hint of genuine interest in her tone. It has been quite some time since she heard much about the British colonies. There was talks of a war or two about something or other; humans are always fighting over something. It's never been of much interest to her outside of polite conversation. Wars are ugly messy things and she far prefers the company of beautiful surroundings. Ofcourse, her ideas about beauty tend to stray a little from the norm, but if her appearance is any indication she atleast knows how to dress to impress.
"It has been quite some time since I spoke to someone from the brave new world." She flashes a smile at Johnny, turning her beguiling aura back his way. "He was quite the charmer as well."
The little exchange between the professional actors does not register as important to the vampire, having never heard of Jezebel's prior difficulties, so she instead allows her attention to drift back to Sada, pausing only briefly to flip the cards infront of her over revealing a pair of nines. A strong starting hand.
"Forgive my manners, child," Eliza says with a soft silky tone, reaching out to place a hand on the girl's arm. "What may I call you?"
Lightning Spangles was not sure that Johnny was fine.
"Of course I'm American!" The actress states, smiling that full toothy smile at the strange woman. She was clearly European, though from that accent, Lightning Spangles could best guess she was German. As she is dealt a card, she finds herself with an eight. "Well, hit me!" She says to the dealer, as she looks back over to Johnny
And that smile dims, for a moment.
"Johnny..." Jezebel says, her eyes getting softer. She didn't even... even register the flirt. "Moderation is the first step downhill." As she gets her a Shirley Temple, however, she rolls her fingers as she glances to her cards. A 5. "Hit me." Jezebel says weakly, that smile still forcing on her face. She looks towards Eliza's hand, as it touches Sada. And she looks at Sada, the fury within the woman barely concealed.
"I suppose you want a drink too?"
Why is she being so weird about liquor? Sada thinks, eyes narrowed to hateful slits. She ponies up a thousand of Zack's buttwipes in order to get in a hand, looking down with a frown as she gets a seven and a four.
She signals to be hit, before looking at Eliza as she reaches over and touches Sada's arm. It's bare, and given all the chill here, she isn't sweating in the slightest, rendering this wholly safe.
"... My name is Sada Asai," she says, a little grudgingly. "I apologize; I may have missed your own in the noise..."
Then she looks at Jezebel.
A thought crosses her mind.
"Oh, I don't know... What was that drink you were having called, again? Is it the, like, the no-alcohol version of something?"
Johnny laughs at Eliza's comment. "What can I say, I'm a friendly guy," he says without even a hint of modesty. He gets a 4. "Ooh. Hit me," he says. He starts talking about himself to no one in particular, his favorite thing to do. "I'm a fighter too, you know. Damn good at it. I studied Jeet Kune Do and Karate both pretty much my whole life, ever since I was a kid. My style blends the two for maximum power. Jeet Kune Do is one of the top forms of martial arts, you know. Right up there with Ansatsuken and Kyokugen, I'd say. Certainly more than Muay Thai. I mean, no offense, but Muay Thai's in a sorry state ever since Sagat got beat up. The freaks really came out of the woodwork in that circuit."
Like Sada, Eliza is cool to the touch when she places her delicate fingers atop the girl's bare forearm. In fact, she's actually quite chilly, perhaps from standing near an air-conditioning unit for too long or holding an icy drink. But the sensation of contact created by the vampiress goes far beyond the simple lack of warmth in her dead flesh. A faint numbness spreads and invades her spirit as well, a feeling not unlike that experienced when one finds themself alone in the dark with the fear of unseen eyes lurking just beyond sight.
"Eliza," she repeats, her voice a gentle siren's call that practically demands all those who hear it to become slowly addicted to its sound. It is a subtle bit of magic but ancient and refined. It comes to her so naturally as to be effortless and even if she could suppress it, she has little desire to do so. "Just... Eliza."
Johnny's self-indulgent monologuing is ignored save for a quick glance during which she offers him a reassuring nod and a sultry smile. Naturally, she's listening and, yes, your accomplishments are very interesting. That's what her expression tells him and the actor would feel that truth burning into his soul should he meeting her gaze. Contrary to popular fiction, a bit of tinted glass does not interfere with her powers.
Her attention quickly returns to Sada, however, whom she seems to have taken a sudden interest in for some reason. The girl's emotions make her easy to read, easier to manipulate.
"Don't be absurd, my dear. You seem quite capable of enduring a few spirits. Order whatever you like." She leans in closer, her smile widening again, and breathes out words that swirl heavily in the air with implied command. "I insist."
Lightning Spangles locks eyes with Sada.
That smile doesn't fade. But the expression in those eyes were clear. As Johnny continues to give his easy banter, he may be wisely staying out of a three-woman showdown. "Don't forget Tae Kwon Do, Johnny!" The cowgirl adds, looking down at her next card. A 9. Jezebel shrugs. Busted. Looking back up to Sada, she nods her head at the girl. "Actually, it is a blend of Ginger Ale and a fruit syrup! It is just like those soda pops you can drink!" For a moment, Lightning Spangles was happy to guide her away from the dark, dark pit of alcholism.
But Eliza's intervention suddenly gains a scowl from the cowgirl.
"Excuse me, Mizz Eliza." The actress drawls, leaning over the table towards the devil at Sada's shoulder. "But I don't know what your kind of folk believe in Europe, but encouraging a young lady like this to get drunk is deplorable." Her smile is fading, into a dedicated glare. The actress's persona continues to act as a shield for Jezebel, emboldening her to stand up to even the likes of Eliza.
"You don't want me to tell her what happens to young ladies who drink, do you?"
Sada, who attends an all girl high school, gets kind of subdued, but she may be picking up a certain sort of... vibe from Eliza, that isn't quite the vibe she's meaning to give out. She shifts uncomfortable in her seat, even as Johnny talks about himself.
Sada hates him now. Hates him for being a /dillo/.
A big, floppy Dillo. She gives Eliza a glance, though, even as she leans inwards. "W-well," she says as the older woman draws near and she shrinks back, "Alright, if you insist..." Her cheeks are reddening slightly, and it isn't just from pure dillohatin'.
Then Jezebel locks eyes with her.
"Please, Miss Spangles," Sada says, "tell us what happens... to young ladies... who drink alcohol." She tries not to smile, but her eyes do it anyway.
Johnny is completely sucked into Eliza's power of charm. He's just that sort of guy. "Yeah that's pretty interesting Jez," he answers his partner, not even registering her comment. "I mean...martial arts is something I've been passionate about ever since I was a kid, you know? I was a wimp back then. But you know what I did? I toughened up, worked out, started learning to fight. Before you knew it I was holding my own, like my heroes in all the old action movies. It was then I knew that /I/ wanted to be an action star."
He starts chugging his drink while he looks at the card he's dealt...a 7. Bust! "Damn!" He holds presses his fist to his mouth. "Alright, let's go again, my man!" he declares to the dealer. His new cards, an 8 and a 6, come up. "Hit," he says. He is completely unaware of the tension between Jezebel and Sada.
The until now aggressive school girl's new shift in demeanor does not escape Eliza's notice. Twin flowers of pink reluctance or perhaps shame blossom in her cheeks, an obvious indicator that her attention is getting through. From excited, to chilly, and now flushed, Sada appears to be on a rollercoaster of emotional experiences tonight. She can hear the swiftness of the girl's heart as it begins to race in reaction to her touch and her magic, twin forces playing on the most primal insticts of the animal that is man.
The vampiress catches the quick glance and meets it with a direct look, trying to make eye contact with the student where her powers can work at their strongest. Windows to the soul and all that.
It was not her intention to incite attraction of that nature but it does not bother her that this is the manifestation that it has taken. Every person experiences the alluring draw of a vampire's aura in different ways. Some through love, some through worship, and some through lust. No matter what form it takes, however, the end result is the same; given enough time even the strongest spirit can be corroded into a willing servant.
Anything she might have been about to say is sharply cut off by the interference of the actor woman. Sada's attention is drawn away from her weakening whatever hold she has begun to build up. It does not vanish completely, faint tendrils of desire tugging at the teenager's spirit, drawing her back to Eliza with subtle urges, but Jezebel's distraction is making it very difficult to keep focused.
The vampiress does not sigh but her expression becomes a little less friendly as she turns to also face Lightning Spangles, bringing the full force of her overwhelming presence to bear on the woman. "Indeed," she says, her voice still calm and controlled, her face a mask of polite smiles, though her displeasure also seems to radiate from within like an undercurrent invisible from the surface. "I see no harm in the indulgence of a simple vice. Tell us of these great dangers."
Johnny has been mostly forgotten at this point but there's no controlling how those nearby react to her presence, especially once she's put effort into snaring their minds. His antics do remind her that she's supposed to be playing cards though and the vampire taps a finger on the table to indicate she'd like to be dealt in also. She doesn't look at the cards though.
What did happen to young ladies who drink too much.
Johnny Cage was no longer a factor. As Eliza turns the full bear of the presence into Lightning Spangles, she felt it. She felt the two woman suddenly focused on the actress. She should be invigorated by the attention. But there was a haunting sense of dread. But Lightning Spangles opens her mouth.
And she begins to speak.
"Well, shoot! At first, it does just look like a simple vice! It is just something to do socially, something you do with friends! But then you learn about what your friends really think of you. What your friends say about your behind your back. And then you realize that you need them as friends, no matter what they say. No matter what they do. And then you start drinking to block out those thoughts, to make them stay your friends."
"And then they bring you new friends!"
Jezebel's eyes begin to stare ahead. There was a transformation, one that Eliza would be far more aware of. The bubbly presence was waning, the confidence dies. Even the drawl, the hokey texan accent, was smothered, drifting into a far more neutral, mid-western accent. "These friends are wild, they're crazy. They're fun, and they want you to be fun. They won't talk about you behind your back, because you aren't any worse than they are. You could be garbage, human garbage, and you would be better than them. But they want you to drink, more and more. It's a challenge for them. They want to make you into garbage like them, because that's what they do to young ladies." Jezebel suddenly stares down into the cards.
The words continue to pour out, a confession almost from the heart of a woman. Jezebel's hands are shaking, as she keeps relating to Sada, on the dangers of underage drinking. "You're a young lady after all. You might have a confidence, you might have control. But after enough drinks, after enough of that poison... then they can make you into anything they want you to. Lover. Clown. Whore. You become their play thing, once you start down that path. But you never think you aren't in control. You never think you aren't in charge. You think th-that you have both hands on the wheel of your li-life."
Jezebel suddenly gives a heaving sob, before just staring.
Staring ahead, past Sada and Eliza.
There is no joy on her face anymore.
Of course, as Sada gets warmer, she might get dewy, and she is a flower whose dews bring only suffering. Oh, the agony! Oh, the tragedy...
Hoe, down Dillo.
Eliza withdraws some of her raw feminine ambiance and Sada doesn't even really notice because she's leaning back away from Lightning Spangles as she begins to speak about her friends. About friends who need you, and you need them. About how the liquor comes, and then the world changes, and then...
Sada's eyes widen. When Jezebel lets out that sob...
Sada does nothing for two seconds. (She also gets a black queen and wins a couple thousand Zack Dollars. This fact informs her next decision.)
Taking in a breath, Sada says, "I... I'm so sorry. Please, ah, Miss Spangles... have a seat. I have to - to go to the restroom, for a moment," doubtless to make a sobriety pledge and throw up the champagne she just drank, "but, I'll be right back, OK...?"
Sada's eyes cut towards Eliza, and in that moment Eliza can sense complete and total wickedness. But then Sada gets up, mumbles some more apologies, and leaves.
At the bar, Sada says, "Yes... give me the... taquitos. For a friend... and, while I'm here... what is it called when you make a 'Shirley Temple' but you put alcohol in it?"
A beat passes.
"Yes. A Dirty Shirley. I would like... two Dirty Shirleys. - Oh? Well... one with rum, and one with vodka. Could you put a cherry in them, so I can make sure...? Thank you." Sada tips him ten Zack Dollars. Since ten Zack Dollars is worth about a nickel in this reckless hyperinflated economy, Sada's going to get a lot of drinks featuring the refreshing taste of waiter spit! It's kind of karmic justice, really.
"Ah, Spangles-san," Sada says as she returns, carrying a small tray. "I know it's a little forward of me, but I got you something - please, we can share it if you don't feel like eating." The two Shirley Temples have a black cherry and a red cherry respectively.
Sada takes the black one, with the rum.
And that leaves Jezebel with the red cherry... which has nothing but grenadine syrup, fizzy seltzer, cool cool ice, and a jigger and a half of pure, sweet, flavorless vodka.
Johnny seems to snap out of himself when Jezebel starts talking about the effects of alcohol. He stares, open mouthed, as she just pours herself out right there at the blackjack table. He doesn't even notice he hits 21 and wins the round with the card dealt to him.
Sada leaves and Johnny is left sitting next to Jezebel. He sucks in his lips into a tight thin line and...gives Jezebel a pat on the back. "So!" he says to Eliza and Jez and the dealer. "How about Zack and his mermaids? Crazy guy, right? Hahahah!"
Oh thank god, Sada is salvaging things. He gives her an approving wink. What a nice person.
Throughout the short tale of woe and regret, Eliza remains quiet and courteous. She may be a heartless monster born of the darkness and eternal dread of night but manners are what separate her from the simpering animals and slobbering beasts that share her domain of wickedness.
A thin eyebrow arches up ever so slightly at the implications being laid out by Jezebel's story but she makes no comment on the subject. It is an old story and one that she has heard many times before; namely because she's used it to her own ends on several occasions. Alcohol is an ancient invention and one that has persisted throughout the ages. Like any vice that brings short-term pleasure and relief from the toil and harship of human existence, it is wickedly addictive, though perhaps more so than most thanks to its chemical properties. Relaxation of inhibitions, short term memory damage, loss of fine motor control; why it's even something of a social stigma to be someone who /doesn't/ drink. What better tool could she ask for when seeking to draw the unwary into her clutches?
When Jezebel is finished, Eliza offers a consiliatory nod and another of her ghostly smiles that suggest far more than they should. However, it is not until Sada returns with the drinks that the look reaches her eyes, a wicked sparkle glimmering within the depths of her scarlet orbs. She caught the teen's look. She can smell the alcohol, her olfactory senses on a completely different level than any mortal. Clever girl.
"To your health," she suggests, lifting her own glass as the drinks are passed around. The vampire's eyes narrow slightly and the corner of her mouth twists up into a smirk. "Enjoy it while you may."
It's a void.
Jezebel just stares ahead, stares into the distance. She wasn't playing Blackjack anymore. She would just exist in oblivion. When Sada... Sada apologizes, she just nods dimly. She was shuddering, lost in the bleakness. She casts her gaze into those two red eyes. There was nothing behind her own.
It takes the pat on the back to break her free.
"Uh..." She grunts, blinking. And then, she begins to laugh, rubbing her arm. "Hahaha. Yeah! Zack and the mermaids! Do you remember that skanky girl who was showing off, Johnny? I really can't stand women like that Tia. Hahahahah." She was still shaking. She was grasping around the table automatically, reaching for something. A nervous tick. As Sada comes back, she looks her in the eyes... and the cup is offered to her. She immediately takes it.
And she downs it in a single gulp.
It was instinct. I was reflex. But after downing it, she felt... calm. It was the impulse. She plucks the cherry out, eating it, her eyes dead focused on the drink. She stands up, reaching for Sada's other cup. "Yes! Yes! To my health! Wow, that's sweet of you! Do you mind if I have your other one? I usually drink my drinks in three, when I am... when I am stressed."
The smile slowly returns to her face.
Sada's reflex is to say 'no bitch that's my drink'.
But this time, she offers it forwards with a coprophagic smile. "Oh, sure. I'm sorry I was kind of rude before... Just surprised, you know? I didn't really know you two were... so close."
"And that Tia woman was awful."
Johnny breathes a sigh of relief. Things were finally getting less awkward. He gets dealt new cards, a 6 and an ace. "Ooh, hit," he says. A waiter refills his own drink - by now he's on his third. "Tia, another Muay Thai person. What'd I tell you? They're all crazy. I wonder who else I'm gonna fight."
My, this woman bounces back remarkably fast. She must have it down to an art form. Eliza leans back on her stool and pretends to care about the cards on the table while the American attempts to recover her wits. The introduction of the alcohol has an interesting effect, almost like she secretly wanted it, but again that proves unsurprising.
Unfortunately, she's mostly stolen the show at this point with her sudden break down. It would be difficult to draw anyone into the kind of mood she wants. It's not like she's exactly starving either. This island of sin has proven quite accomodating to her needs.
"Well," the vampiress says, rising to her feet with a graceful flourish. "I believe that I shall retire to the beach. Some fresh air is in order." She tilts her head towards Johnny and then Jezebel, bowing ever so slightly. Even that gesture seems magnanimous. "Mr. Cage. Miss Spangles. It was a pleasure to meet you both."
Eliza turns to leave but before she goes her gaze sweeps back to the young girl. A coy smile is given and a touch of magic to leave her with a little something to think on, a faint smell of roses and the subtle allure of a powrful attraction. Whether or not she chooses to follow along or shakes off the enchantment, the exotic Romanian stalks out of the casino and vanishes into the darkness as easily as a shadow.
Jezebel downs the drink offered.
"Wow." Jezebel says, licking her lips. She doesn't... she doesn't even realize it is spiked. "It's so sweet! How did you get them to make it so sweet, Sada?" She asks, smiling broadly. She laughs, laughs aloud as Eliza turns to leave. "Yes! Yes! Goodbye! Johnny, have you had these Shirley Temples?" She licks her lips again, as she pushes the cup at Sada. "Could you get me more? You have that... that charm! Oh thank you Sada!"
She wanted more of these drinks from Sada.
She wanted more drinks from her friend.
"Oh, sure," Sada says, smiling again.
"I'll go get you a whole tray full if you're that thirsty~"
Of course, after that Sada will mysteriously make herself absent, but the damage is already done. She'll be in a good mood all week!!
Log created on 20:30:54 02/11/2015 by Johnny Cage, and last modified on 10:02:28 02/12/2015.