Tatsumi Port Island - or just Port Island, for short - is in reality a small part of a larger city. With the influence of several things on the man-made island, such as one of the best public high schools in the country, most people at this point refer to the whole city as Port Island even if they intend to go somewhere that actually isn't on the island proper. This generalization has stuck.
A large, densely-populated urban city facing the ocean, Port Island is a place that runs almost like clockwork through the day. Boasting one of the best public transportation systems in the prefecture, if not Japan itself, it is easy to get about where one needs to by monorail. Much of the city's prosperity is owed to the Kirijo Group, whose influence has had many positive respects throughout.
Though humanity has advanced so far in the name of convenience and expansion, there is an underlying level of unhappiness that can be found in many of the residents. Maybe they're in a rut, or things aren't going so smoothly as they seem to on the surface. Some have even gone into a state of unresponsiveness to the world at large, content to remain catatonic until death by malnutrition or the elements. This is dubbed "Apathy Syndrome," and has no known cause.
Surely, none of this is what people will want to let go unchecked?
A dark night. A dark man waits - with a dark purpose.
The purpose is a dark moccha hot chocolate in a little coffee shop which is actually a front for something far darker. But that is a topic for another night. This night, the coffee shop is well lit and well packed. Staying home during a heavy storm can be unsettling or even frightening. Being out, around people in a warm setting with a warm drink is quite a suitable compromise between being alone and being overcrowded.
Outside the windows, rain sleets down in sheets. It is kareoke night at this particular place, and the usual renditions are going down. Takahisa Kandori takes a sip of his hot moccha and licks his lips, but otherwise remains impassive and silent.
He's being given a wide berth where he sits on a leather couch, and has a habit of staring too-intently at people. He's left his sword at home tonight.
Thunder booms occasionally, the door is open, and the waitstaff is busy. There is a reading nook in one corner which is a bit quieter, and a mezzanine above the shop which is almost deserted since everyone is by the kareoke stage.
Midori's dad - whom, incidentally, works for a SEBEC holding that deals with cellphones - was very likely to be stuck at the place of his employment during the storm. He knows Midori is capable of taking care of herself and hopes she'll be okay the next few days at home.
Problem is, Midori has decided not to stay home. She rather likes how dark it's gotten outside, content to stand around in the terrible wind and rain with but an umbrella while walking along the shadows of the big city and otherwise strolling like there isn't a freaking typhoon going on outdoors. After all, in Midori's own little world, she is fine. (She may also incidentally be, at long last, finally appropriately dressed for the weather in all those clothes she wears no matter what it's like out there.)
She just happens into a coffee shop that's still operating as though there wasn't a typhoon either. She takes no interesting precautions to head inside, strolling along in like it's a perfectly fine evening where absolutely nothing at all is wrong. She closes her umbrella and runs a gloved hand through her hair as if to inspect it for some reason or another. She was going to meet here with a friend.
Her friend tried to call her cellphone and say she wouldn't be there due to THE TYPHOON, but, true to form, Midori never answered.
Farah lives in about twenty different places. Her apartment is in Port Island, Tom's apartment is in Sumaru, and she works in the SEBEC main holdings in Lunarvale. Therefore, her being out and about is very high, although the typhoon did catch her off guard.
Don't pay much attention to life, do you Farah?
The woman stops right as she enters, shaking off the rain from her coat. Taking it off, she neatly folds it, and queues. A hot cocoa would go down /really/ well at this point.
A coffee shop. It's not Fumiya's normal type of hangout, but he was careless today and didn't pay a whole lot of attention to the Typhoon warnings. Not that he hasn't experienced a Typhoon before, or at least Typhoon-scale weather, but he had other things on his mind this morning. He was in no mood to listen to the warnings of friends and family, and attributed it to just them blowing smoke.
And now he's stuck on this end of Port Island taking refuge in a coffee shop. All because some of his other favorite hangouts closed early, and his friends bailed.
Well at least this place has Karaoke, though Fumiya hasn't tried his hand at it yet. This shop doesn't feel like the right... audience for him. He sticks out like a sore thumb just a bit more than usual. So for now he sits at a cramped seat nursing a hot drink.
This had perhaps not been the smartest idea that had dropped into her head lately, but compared to what had happened earlier that week, it was sort of nothing. After all a psychotic young girl with an oversized sword was much -much- worse. At least that had been solved, albeit not in a way that'd make her think of it as a victory. Azusa had given her word though so there wasn't that much to do about it.
"I wish I had an umbrella..." Mutters she to herself and pulls the hood on her raincoat further down over her face. While the wind didn't bother her, it was rather comforting if she had to be honest, the rain certainly did. Azusa was pretty certain that she wasn't that far away from the coffee place she'd found the other day. Just a few metres if she wasn't mistaken.
"Ah! There it is!" Azusa smiles brightly. Finally a chance at getting some warm coffee! It was bound to be a lot better than the stuff she made anyway. Not that it'd take a whole lot to accomplish that.
As she opens the door and enters, she doesn't really pay much attention to the others present and goes straight to the counter. Azusa then quickly orders a hot cup of coffee and pays up before turning around.
Azusa walks over to a chair and doesn't seem to notice who's sitting not that far away from her. Mostly because right now she's busy taking a sip of the coffee and still isn't paying attention to her surroundings. All in all, she figures this might be a nice day! Apart from the rain.
Kandori waves to Farah as she enters, recognizing one of his new assets, and waves her over while flagging down a waitress with the other hand for a refill of his drink. "Get you something?" he yells to her over the general coffee shop bustle. Kandori calls attention to himself, but not much. He's doing nothing to hide his presence. He recognizes Fumiya but doesn't show it, since the circumstances were rather unfortunate last time. He's in his usual simple suit, but he does have an umbrella tucked under the couch. He looks at Azusa, who he recognizes from circumstances quite similar to those in which he'd first encountered Fumiya, and studies her while waiting to see if Farah picks up her skirts and flees from an open greeting.
Kareoke is being perpetrated.
Midori has no past experience with the great Kandori, and even as he seems to be keeping a moderate profile it's hard to ignore that particularly striking aura he has. One she, ultimately, doesn't dwell much upon as she otherwise kind of moves along to whatever table is available while waiting for her friend that is not coming.
"Can I get you something to drink?" Asks a waitress.
"I'm fine." Midori responds.
"It's rained a lot out there! We should get you something warm so that you don't catch a col--"
"I'm fine." Midori repeats with a smile. "I'm waiting for a friend."
The waitress gives an odd look, as though wondering if school-age kids would really be willing to brave this weather. Nonetheless, she nods and gets back to work.
"Hot chocolate, please!" Farah calls back over the noise. She really doesn't want to go mosey up to New Boss, but with the amount of people, she may just have to. She struggles her way through the crowd, wincing, before she manages to fight her way to him.
"Hello." She greets, with a warm smile. "I said hot cocoa?" She adds on, with a bright smile. And starts looking for a seat before her legs give out on her.
Fumiya recognizes no one present, which is probably a good thing. Just about anyone in here he would recognize would be from those mind-scarring encounters with SHADOW MONSTERS which he only mostly remembers. He remembers enough to know he kind of wishes he didn't, yet like a moth to a flame he's compelled to keep sticking his nose into it all. For completely selfless reasons of course. (Of course.)
By this point his hot hot coffee had matured into hot-ish coffee and was starting to lose its charm. Leaning back in his chair, as much as his surrounding space would allow anyway, he ponders getting out and braving the weather again. Maybe he could make it back home, but he doesn't really want to go back yet. Stupid weather, ruining weekend plans.
Midori catches his eye when she enters, if only for the virtue of being a babe. There are more babe-ly babes in the world, many of the waitresses in here for instance, but Fumiya will take his eye-candy as it comes.
The coffee here tasted just as good as she remembered. It was exactly what she needed as well today. Only thing that really lacked was some sunshine, but one couldn't have everything.
"I wonder how my pet snake is doing..." Mumbles she to herself and takes another sip from the cup. Currently it was her mother that was taking care of it. While she wasn't an awful pet caretaker, she had no prior experience with pets like that, which worried Azusa slightly. At least it wasn't one that was difficult to take care of so she had faith in her mother.... for now.
The sound of a familiar voice makes her look up and eye the other customers that's present. However before she has a chance to track down the source of that particular voice, she hears another all too familiar one saying she's fine. At first she just dismisses it, thinking it couldn't possibly belong to who she thinks it is. After all what are the chances?
Azusa gets back to her coffee and closes her eyes as she takes another sip. She figures she's just imagining things. There is no way that one would be out here today. That would be a quite messed up coincidence after all and that couldn't be possible.... right?
Kandori smiles at Farah, beckoning for the waitress to go fill the order. He beckons imperiously, but the smile is kind - it just has a tacked on appearance. Kandori kicks back the chair opposite him for Farah to fall into. Then he brushes his hands over the countertop and sets down his book - a rather lengthy volume in some derivative of latin.
"How're things shaping up for you? I know we've had you worked off your feet lately, but I had another business proposal. It'd pay, and you'd get to- make a difference?" It's almost like it's a question, Kandori being unsure if that's the right word. He often has that issue in social situations. Charming but distant is the standard description. He knows what he WANTS to say, and recognizes that if he ever said it it would ruin him.
He is pointedly not gazing in Azusa's direction.
If Fumiya's into those sorts of bad girls who wear very long dresses, it's not a bad choice, one supposes. After all, Midori Nakashima is, by her incessantly frequent admissions, fine.
As for Azusa's visual query on who it could possibly be, unfortunately, yes, it is her. She's in the same clothes as always. Probably just... sitting there, in her own little happy world of everything being fine and nothing wrong at all, sitting there waiting for someone. Who knows how long it'll be before they ask her to actually buy something or leave?
She does turn her head back over in Fumiya's direction at some point or another, blissfully unaware of the presence of the REPORTER HAG. Wow, that one's so bright, she never thought colors could come in that... brightness, wait until her friend (who is still not coming) sees this, she'll gossip about that for so long they may never actually get around to doing karaoke or whatever. (Possibly by intent!)
Farah eyes Fumiya briefly. He still owes her a pink colored pencil. The woman takes a seat in the chair opposite Kandori, raising an eyebrow on his Latin derivitative novel. Interesting, boss. Interesting. She smiles at him, shrugging slightly.
"What kind of a difference?" She asks. "I'm getting complaints about not being home enough as it is..." She admits, raising and lowering one shoulder.
Guido tents his fingers. "Oh, kids. We have a group of kids who could use both help with tutoring and instruction in basic leadership. They will be the executives and political movers and shakers of tomorrow. Children are my future, and I want to see them well taken care of. We could also use adult chaperones and advisors for field trips. Every now and then I'll be taking some of the children on trips to exotic locales, and we could use someone in that post. It comes with generous additional pay, and modest quarters in the castle itself."
The hot chocolate is delivered for Farah, along with a refill for Kandori. He gestures to the book. "Principles of Alchemy, one of the pre-burning copies of a simple version. Reading it for historical interest."
Fumiya would love to know that he was the source of gossip, even the kind of gossip that isn't happening nor going to happen! He might get along well with Midori if he at all knew her or was going to speak with her. But that's possibly not happening tonight. He's just not fond of crowded, cramped spaces such as these. He's still standing out, but there's not much he can do save get up on the karaoke stage.
Farah should let that pink pencil go. Fumiya barely remembers having it in the first place. Though that does raise an interesting question: Where IS the pencil? Did it disappear into the ether along with the zombie? Was it destroyed? Or is it still at the Paulownia mall, possible broken into pieces in some dusty corner? These are the sorts of questions that would make an interesting philosophical debate among Persona users, but right now Fumiya is neither a Persona user nor interested in that kind of talk.
So while Fumiya has no intentions of replacing the pencil right now he /does/ finally notice Farah and gives her another once over. He never got to get a good look at her last weekend, what with the horrible terrible things that immediately followed his meeting her.
Azusa looks in the direction where she heard that familiar female voice again, just to make sure she was just imagining it. Unfortunately for her it quickly goes up for her that she wasn't. At first she feels like simply leaving, but then her eyes turns towards the nearest window and she's reminded of the rain. Heavy rain or Midori... In the end she opts to stay. As long as she doesn't address the girl, she probably won't notice her anyway.
Azusa turns her head away from Midori and is suddenly met by some very -very- bright colours. If there was one thing she'd say about Fumiya, it was that he wasn't exactly difficult to recognize. She didn't know of anyone else who actually went around wearing clothing like that. At least he's of no concern. Not to her anyway.
Kandori on the other hand is something of a concern. She recognizes him as the man she ran into in that strange building. Why was he here? That was the question that first crossed her mind, but as long as he didn't cause any trouble, she didn't really have the inclination to find out. Right now she just wanted to drink her coffee, but still... she was curious and she did sit close enough to overhear the conversation...
Farah can't finish drawing neon colors without her pink pencil. There is a small hole in her heart and in her pencil box at the lack of the pink color. The pink, it calls to her, it misses her. Whether it's lost in the zombie or in a dusty corner of the mall, it yearns for its owners heart. Farah and her pink coloring pencil - they are a team.
Farah's gaze is firm, quiet as she stares at Guido, fingers tapping the rim of her hot cocoa cup. "I already have quarters." She says, inclining her head. "My boyfriend, as well, might protest if I up and move on him again, especially as he's been the one complaining." Tom does complain about the lack of Farahs in the Sun lately, but she's a night girl!
Some more time passes. Midori's sure her friend will be here, yes, even as it's thundering and pouring like almost nothing else she's ever personally experienced. This is a mighty typhoon indeed. Only someone completely crazy would want to head out and about in this weather.
She casts another glance over at the master of noen, whom probably has his own space reserved entirely on the periodic table. Her friend should be here any minute, but wait.
Midori gets up out of her seat and heads over to the very human embodiment of the noble gas (one supposes), hands folded in front of her as she steps along. This would put her in Azusa's line of sight yet again!
"Hi!" She says to the boy in the crazy bright colors. "Can I sit here too? That seat looks comfortable." Truth be told, all the seats are likely the exact same.
"Suit yourself. But we need someone who can be a calming parental influence to these misguided youth, Miss Newman. And I assure you, you have exactly the right temperament." Kandori looks hurt, even bothered by Farah's refusal, but he contrives to shrug it off while studying Azusas from across the room. "I'd hate to be the cause of any personal distress.", he finishes with: "I aim to be the remedy. Still, how are you settling in?"
Kandori's gaze is probing now, but he also looks at the Master of Neon, making a private note to make his life a living hell.
Farah frowns. She doesn't like hurting people, and she sets her cup down, leaning forward. "As long as you don't need me to move out of Toms' apartment, I'll do whatever you need me too." She says. "If you are okay with that?" She inquires, getting whipped cream on her nose as she sips her hot cocoa.
"Oh, I'm settling in fine. It's just ... been awhile since I've um... well." She shrugs.
Fumiya fears not colored pencil karma! He is the master of the neon colors, not their slave!
He's about to take another sip of his increasingly cooler coffee when Midori suddenly appears in his field of vision with an offer of company. At least that's how it seems. Maybe coming to this place to escape the rain wasn't a bad move after all.
"Sure thing, I can't say no to a babe like you." Fumiya replies, possibly immediately ending his chances to get anywhere with Midori. "What brings you here in this weather?"
It may not be the best place to try to hit it off with a chick, but he'll take what he can get. Especially since he hasn't really gotten anywhere in the past few weeks. The supernatural stuff has been eating into his 'be a horny teenage guy' time; it's only gotten worse since school resumed.
That Midori gets in her line of sight again, even thoug the girl doesn't prevent her from seeing the two she's listening to, annoys her greatly. Azusa's doing her best to simply ignore her, but that is rather difficult if she intends to do things like that!
While she can easily overhear what they say, Azusa isn't certain if she understands it as she didn't catch the entire conversation. What was this about misguided youth? What did he aim to remedy exactly? Why was he talking tothat odd woman, who was starting to look rather familiar for some reason, and what was this about personal distress? Maybe she was just being overly nosy, but it seemed like she was only getting more questions rather than answers... and why did that woman give her mental images of a pink pencil?
"Worked? I suppose I can say the same." Kandori responds to Farah's inquiry, shrugging it off. "Well, I'm very glad you want to help us, Farah. We could use someone with your skills. Oh, before I forget, there are a series of basement rooms we need you to review. There were some industrial accidents down there. Top secret, I'll have you taken down tomorrow. We need to know what the accidents were." Kandori's hands roam to his book again, and he cracks it open to a page covered in eldritch diagrams. In the middle are sparkling silvery characters. And the etching of a moon.
"Oh, look at that. Pretty, isn't it?" He smiles over at Farah, opening the book on the page and reading the words to himself. His eyes then roam to Azusa, who's been watching throughout, and then back to the book. "Jade said you haven't been in Japan long. Was she right, Miss Newman?"
Why is it always basements?
"If I can get to work safely, I'll be there." Farah says, tilting her head. If she can get to work safely - well. It's all about how hard she tries, isn't it? Farah leans back in her chair, tucking her feet under her.
"It is pretty." She says, distantly staring into her cup of soggy whipped cream. "Oh yes, just barely a week or two at this time."
Fumiya blinks. Just hanging out, eh? The girl seemed to take something like the Typhoon and trivialize it. No normal person would do that. Groovy.
At the 'having a good time' comment, Fumiya can't help but laugh. "Really? Well that's great. Glad to know I can help with that." Even if all he's done is offer her a seat. And dazzle her with his winning personality and charm and his awesome clothes. Also he is a good dancer.
"So what do you consider a good time on a /nice/ day?" He queries. Who knows? Maybe she just had a lot of things go right on the day that it just so happens to storm like crazy out. Or maybe she's one of those weird types that loves bad weather. Whatever. It all works for Fumiya.
An accident huh? Given what she'd seen in the building she'd met Kandori in, she wouldn't be surprised that there had been accidents. That place had been extremely creepy and it had weird books, like the one he was holding now. Coincidence?
It seemed as if Midori was either ignoring her or hadn't noticed her. Personally she couldn't care less about which it was. So if Midori didn't try to bother her, she wouldn't try to bother Midori.
Midori laughs alongside Fumiya, almost as if... on cue. Cheerful, sure, but basically on command rather than any true amusement. It's kind of hard to pin down, especially with the smile on her face.
"Umm," she thinks out loud when Fumiya asks her what she likes to do on a nice day, bringing a gloved hand up over her mouth as if to consider. "I like to do lots of things! Every day is really fun."
...Even this one?
Kandori's smile in Farah's direction continues. "Do try to make it, I am sure it will be a learning experience. Now, I have to go watch something I recorded on television. Market research." He's standing up, he's grabbing his umbrella. He's walking for the door, slowly.
Midori was probably one of the weirdest people, shadow-possessed status notwithstanding, Azusa had ever run into. How could she think a day like this was fun...?
Azusa goes back to ignoring Midori and her gaze follows Kandori as gets up and walks towards the door. Now the question was why was he leaving? Could following him provide some answers? Well there was a chance of that and leaving would mean no more Midori... Two flies in one hit!
Azusa drinks the remaining coffee in her cup and puts it down on the table. She'd already paid for it so there was no need to worry about that. Hopefully Kandori wouldn't notice that she was following him...
Farah inclines her head. "Of course, thank you." She says, finishing off her coffee. "Time to get home before Tom wonders where I went too." She says, muttering softly, pulling on her warm coat and hat.
Lucky for both Fumiya is not quite sharp enough to pick up on Midori's odd nature. Not the more subtle parts anyway. Sure enjoying a day like this is odd, but to Fumiya that alone is just kind of quirky. And he's the last person on Earth who should slam someone else for being quirky. Maybe on some subconscious level he wonders if something is up, but he's not about to listen to that.
Besides, she's a chick that seems pretty unique and is interested in talking to him. Score. The only thing that bugs him is that he left both his cell phone and any means to write crap down on at home, he'll have to rely on the totally awesome memory that he doesn't really have.
"Well narrow it down for me, babe." Fumiya comments. "Or else I'll just have to make some stuff up. What are you into?"
"Narrow it down? Okay~" Midori removes the hand from her face. It is kind of weird looking at Fumiya this close, it's like all that neon is actually casting its own light source.
"I like clothes." Much like a guard in some fantasy kingdom somewhere, except not with swords. "There's a lot of them. And they can be so... bright, and, and, um. I make them sometimes. I made a few yukata over summer! You should have seen mine."
She sure is wearing a lot of clothes. It's appropriate for the weather, sure, but she's still wearing what might be a bit too much.
Clothes huh? A pretty standard response from a chick, at least Fumiya thinks so. But Midori mixes it up a bit by admitting she makes them herself. That may not be an entirely unusual trait, but it's enough to get Fumiya's interest. She seems to dig his brights too. "Maybe you could show me sometime." He says, a sly grin spreading on his face.
He's about to keep going and lead the conversation to a point where he could get some contact information, or at least a name, when he notices something from the window in the coffee shop. A familiar looking car; at least he thinks so, hard to tell with the rain. His grin drops into a frown when he realizes what's up. He went and called his folks at a pay phone earlier to fill them in that he'd be home later, he let slip that he was going to take refuge in this coffee shop for awhile. Damn, they went to come and fetch him. Has the storm gotten so bad? His fears are confirmed when he sees the slicked-back head of his father pop out of the vehicle, and Fumiya immediately stands.
"Sorry babe. But I gotta run." He says with an apologetic look on his face. Ditching the babe is better than letting her know his folks came to pick him up, weather or no weather. At least in fumiya's mind anyway. He slides around the table towards the door. "Maybe I'll see you around. Later!"