1965-01-16 - Death and Baklava
Summary: Deep discussions over Greek pastries.
Related: None
Theme Song: None
suriel reno kai 


There was a haphazzard looking crow sitting perched on the back of a chair at Sagnaki; the recluse area for the city's Wyrd with the implied non-hostility agreement. Really, for Kai's sake, it looks like his buddy was tumbled dry, though happy enough picking at a grape. This is harder than it looks.

*

Kai was just playing in the main room a moment ago. He's a good performer. Nice strong voice, good hand with an acoustic guitar. Mostly, though? He's a showman. He's got that dimpled grin, and he makes eye contact with people, makes them think he's singing just for them. The music is ambience, nothing all that special, but he has fun doing it. It's time to take a break though, and he comes back to the courtyard. Before he can even steal any, a small plate of baklava is put before him with a warning: "Stop nicking this." Kai smiles vapidly. Oh, server person, that's just not going to happen. With his pastry in hand, he finds a table to sit at. His attention shifts to the crow. "Those are better squeezed through a juicer and left to set awhile."

*

Do all roads lead to Saganaki? Perhaps eventually? Suriel ends up there today, so maybe so. His bike had rumbled up a moment ago, and now he's wandering in, hair windblown and wild, leather jacket and jeans a little dusty from the road.

Kai, he doesn't recognize; on Reno, however, his gaze stalls for just a moment. A whisper of a memory, perhaps? A flicker of familiarity? He inclines his head to the crow, just in case.

*

Reno blinked and headtilted like the little 1' crow does considering this wisdom. Carefully he picked up the grape in his ebon beak, holled over to Kai's plate and carefully set it down giving it a beak-pat before trying to take a bite of the baklava instead since that wasn't under-ripe.

*

Kai grins, and as soon as the bird takes wing, he's already breaking off a bit of baklava to give him. "Are you coming to the next party for the queer kids? I'll save you a dance," he tells the bird. He speaks pretty freely back here int he courtyard about such things, conversational rather than furtive tones. As he preens the crow's feathers with a fingertip, he glances up at Suriel, and his smile broadens. "Wow," he says.

*

"Hello," smiles Suriel back at Kai. Talk about such things doesn't seem to trouble him at all, though his expression is tranquil enough that he doesn't look like much of anything seems to trouble him. "I've never been here before," he adds, with a glance around, before his gaze returns to Kai and his little feathery friend. "I haven't been back in town in years."

*

Reno was very much now a happy rumpled crumpled bird. Looking up though he paused. If all the things that scare him his actual shadow might be the weirdest. He was mixed on this one. Chewing his head turned to one side and then the other. He swallowed and seemed confused. "I… now you… I'll be honest buddy, no idea how." HOLY shit a talking crow! Yeah, that's why he's back here instead of eating bagles at Cafe a-go-go. "I went, Kai. Well… I roosted. Tried to introduce some people to some people. THey seemed nice." Yet continues to do nothing for himself. "Hey um… have a seat? This's Kai.I'm …well… jsut Reno here."

*

Kai does his best to help with the rumpled and crumpled feathers, smoothing them where he can. It's an odd, innocent gesture of affection. Maybe he just likes birds. Likes them enough to share his baklava. "Oh," he says to Suriel. "You're in Saganaki Restaurant, owned and operated by the illustrious Lambert Petropolous — I'm iffy on the last name. Back here in the courtyard, it's reserved for people who can be cool, you know? About mutants and other have-nots. If you're cool, then welcome." He sits up a bit, gesturing at his table as somewhere specifically to be welcome to. "Like Reno says, I'm Kai. I play guitar here sometimes."

*

Suriel considers both of them. "I've been around," he nods to Reno, "But not in all the same old places, since I Fell. I might have been around you, when you were younger, every now and then." To explain that, he manifests his wings. They sweep out behind him, pale and bright, though their shining, holy gold has faded, and blood stains the tips as they touch the ground. "I help the living now, rather than the dead." He doesn't do this to impress, but to /explain/: he is a birb, in his own way, too.

*

Reno wiggled his skull against Kai's hand. Yeah he wasn't going to say no to being sorted out, by his buddy. He waited until Kai was done and coffee arrived to unfold, something like origami being undone and a shade being pulled down, and had a pair of legs and arms and looked like a decently dressed man. Granted one whose black, almost feathery hair was an aboslute mess, but a person. Okay he was a little bruised, but not so worse for the wear. It didn't stop the young man from having an earest look on a very expressive face, "Woah, yeah. I think, maybe, mPapi spoke of you, like before, but…" Well he didn't have to tell Suriel his father had passed. He reckoned he just knew that stuff like he did. Still the word 'fall' didn't bode well and rather than being reviled offered, "Heeey, is okay. LIke… I did time for a lil while too. We all mess up some stuff. Helpin the living's a good step though. c'mon we'll introduce you to greek coffee." He looked to Kai and offered, "Hey, that think looked like it really worked out. That' opportunity man. That one girl? SHe was even smilin by teh end of it."

*

Kai's eyes widen a touch as he notes the wings. "Angel," he says. "You look like a nice angel. I had a troublemaker last night. Michael. The Michael, not that I'm trying ot namedrop. You've got some red on your wings." Like Suriel wouldn't notice the blood on his own wings. He nudges the plate of baklava toward Suriel. See, this is why he has to keep stealing it. He shares! Reno gets a grin. "It was nice. Even Mike apologized for getting all het up. I can't stay mad at people." Amdist his prattling, he nibbles on baklava, but mostly makes sure there's enough to share between Suriel and Reno.

*

"Yes. It's your father that I remember." Suriel's seen the crow and the man, now, and the resemblance is true. "My condolences about his passing, his service was exemplary. I'm glad that you've carried his legacy forward, he must be very proud of you." He doesn't /look/ very evil, so perhaps what's brought him to earth is more complicated than just simple rebellion. "And I'd love to try Greek coffee, thank you. Am I paying for us today?" Yes, he'd overheard the comment to Kai. "Michael's a good a… guy. I've known him for… well, aeons. A little… enthusiastic and single-minded, but his heart is good and true. What happened? Is he all right? Are you all right?"

*

Suriel's wings fold up and vanish, hidden from sight, though his shadow, now and then, sometimes betrays their shape, like a ripple of heat haze on the ground.

*

The dimunitive Puerto RIcan man gave the taller elf a look like really? "DUde, he's the Angel of like… War and soldiers and things. I dunno." His brow furrowed and the look was apologetic to Kai even though, yaknow, he was just a birb. "I dunno dialin it back is really in some people' ya know…. kit of skills." He looked to Suriel and held up a hand, "No offense. SOme people get really into their work."

THe blackbird quieted and went, oddly somber for a moment. Looking back up to teh angel he nodded slowly, "Mucho Gracias. Papi was a good man; good father too. I'm glad he could do right by people. I"m… I'm tryin." He warmed a smile and laughed a bit, "Mess up sometimes though, but I think we're doin pretty good."

*

"Oh, we're fine," Kai says. "Someone said his real name and he got riled, but they sorted it out in the hall. I was just trying to keep the party going so I told everyone it was a queen spat." To Reno, he says, "I'm married to a trickster god, war and soldiers is nothing. Anyway, he did come back to say sorry, then went to get some rest." His eyes go all dewey. "Poor guy. It's got to be rough getting around in a new place and not knowing the culture. I was born here, so it's like home to me."

*

Suriel accepts the baklava, finally, and takes a nibble. "I've had this before, but this one is excellent," he opines to Kai, and then his eyes widen slightly. "His true name? No wonder he got agitated, knowing an angel's true name rarely ends well for anyone involved. Speaking of, you may call me Suriel." Which is probably not his true true name, since he's giving that out pretty casually. About Reno's papi, he states gently, "You're still new to the job, you'll get the hang of it. It's not easy, helping the dead sort themselves out… I think when it becomes too easy, you're probably phoning it in anyway." His smile is just a little sad, a little wistful: he loved his old job. And back to Kai: "He's tough. Even if he goes back eventually, a little reality will be good for him. Smooth out those edges a little."

*

Reno blinked and pulled his head back and squiiiiint at Kai, "Yous' married to that crazy Loki guy that keeps birdnapping me? Maaaaaan he and I need to have a serious sit down to discuss my rent, dude. I can't cut hair and get paid if I ain't there." Fair point. A half grin warmed to the wayward angel offeringg, "Yeah. At this point been doin it longer than I ahven't, but as a kid ya know? That's hard. Dealin with angry dead people as a twelve year old who's gotta go to school and has to stand on teh phonebook to use the payphone? Ain't easy."

*

Kai nods to Reno and says, "Yeah, he's my man. You need some money for rent? He gives me all I want." He grins then and adds, "He likes you." He gives Reno a clap on the shoulder. Pat pat. To Suriel, he says, "I think he learned something last night about reality. He seemed like he had a lot to think about. True names aren't to be messed with, but you know how it is with mortals. They have no idea what they're doing. No one teaches them this stuff anymore." He glances between the two of them. An angel and a corvid, of course they deal in death. "I've died once. I don't recommend it."

*

Suriel sits down opposite Kai. "Mortals are messy and complicated. Heaven isn't, except, of course, when it is." He's still smiling faintly, and while it's genuine, it's complicated, too. "I would have said, years ago, that dying is only a transition, a journey, and thus shouldn't be something to fear— unless you're going to Hell, anyway. Or similar places. But, having been here, among mortals… I've grown rather fond of this present existence. There's so much to see and do, and it all passes so quickly. I'll never see all of it, only… snapshots."

*

Reno might start molting when Kai says that Loki has taken a shine to him. His shoulders slumped and he suddenly looked very tired, "Maaaan, I'd hate to see what Loki does to people he don't like." Looking to Suriel he boggled picking at the baklava, "He kidnaps me from work like 'oh this will be great fun!' and like, I mettum. I know better. We get there? Yup. Total opposite of fun. There's this… pri… primate? Primadonna… I f'get the word but like the aaaaancient evil ass thing call Mephis… Meffy-somethin that's comin. GOnna like swallow a sun, or a bunch of people, or kick a puppy. I dunno but I was like you pulled me out of work for this? You couldn't just go, oh hey, Reno, Thursday's gonna suck. Wear a slicker?! Nope! Not even."

*

"Primordial?" Kai says. He pats Reno's shoulder again. "It's more interesting to go see whatever it is in person," he says. "He kidnaps me sometimes, too. It's so romantic." He sighs, smitten. To Suriel, he says, "This is my favorite era so far. Vaccines are groovy. They don't work on me, but I don't get mortal illnesses. It's just sad losing so many of them to something a jab in the arm would prevent." He helps himself to some of the Greek coffee. "How long are you here for?" he asks Suriel. "I'm here til Loki wants to return to Asgard, so it could be awhile or it could be next week."

*

"Mephistopheles?" Suriel keeps his voice low, just in case that one might be listening. He does his best not to laugh at Reno's complaints, and his face is a model of sympathy. "That must be so rough on you," he commiserates, his gentle voice suddenly very soothing. So very, very calming! "That's probably why he does it, since he's Loki, after all. Perhaps he envies his father, who had Huginn and Muninn at his beck and call." And to Kai, "However long I like. I felt like I might be needed here, so I came. Whenever that feeling passes, I'll move on." He, too, avails himself of the coffee! "Antibiotics. Vaccines. I've passed whispers of these things on to humanity over the ages, but the techniques were different. Before, it was powdering the sores of cows and applying them to wounds. It was burying pots of grain and water in soil rich with microbes. But look at humanity, with their syringes. At least they've started washing their hands again. I tried so hard on that one."

*

Reno sighed and worked on cooling his jets. "Lil shorter than that, but … could be him. " When Suriel said it must be hard on him he shrugged, "Nah is like a lil poke and it's all over." He paused and looked up almost apologetically, "Oh the.. yeah not the vaccines. Yeah like… I don't… get why he and Strange are always like 'here, witness this' but no one ever tells me why or whadda ya do with that except never sleep again, ya know. I ain't like yous guys. I kinda need that." He listened to Kai and Surriel talk about humanity acros the ages, and though he was only 22? He seen enough. "Yeaaaah THanks for that hand washing thing. Humans is filthy man. We get into everything."

*

"Surely human ingenuity deserves some credit," Kai says. "You've got your Thomas Edisons and Tony Starks." He drinks his coffee and sighs with pleasure. "I'm not sure what their endgame is," Kai tells Reno. "They must think you can do something with the information, or maybe you've got the makings of a good witness. Someone has to see it happen. Are you writing it down? You should write it down."

*

"Yeah, it's like I told Ishmael ben Elisha back in the day, I actually DO know where your hands have been." Suriel allows himself a delicate little shudder. "Humanity's ingenuity deserves its own credit, absolutely. Discovery upon discovery, with only their own hands and hearts and minds to guide them all. It's exhilerating, but so frightening. I couldn't just bear to watch anymore." His tone remains soft and even, despite the words. And he agrees with Kai: "You should write it down, he's right. You won't have to just carry it in your head, and there should always be a witness when great powers gather."

*

Reno wasn't going to tell 10k+ old beings they were wrong. His brow furrowed and he considered that. "Hmmm think so? I ean, I ain't tried that. I could. I eman…" He took a deep breath and shrugged, "I'll give it a shot. Who's to say it won't work if we don't try it I guess, right?" He looked to Kai and finally said, "Can you just tell Loki that some of us have to work to earn a livin and if he come for me in work hours I'm a charge 'em."

*

"If I remember," Kai says to Reno, "He's not going to care, though. Loki does as Loki does." Something Kai accepts, apparently. He finishes his coffee, stretches, and says, "I'd better get back to earning my baklava." He offers Suriel a warm smile and tells him, "Compassion is a gift. I hope the world never makes you lose it." Then he hops to his feet. "Catch you both later." As he wanders out, he's humming 'Blowing In the Wind' under his breath.

*

"Charge him," Suriel agrees. "Triple your rate, even. He can afford it." He watches Kai go, and then turns back to Reno. "Shall I buy you lunch, then, for the conversation?"

*

Reno waved to Kai and grinned. His eyes, dark and sharp, completed his smile to the off-duty Angel. "I like where you're goin with this. I'll have to do that." He paused and offered as a formality, but because it pleased him, "Suriel, I'd like that and… I'm glad I get to meet you. Who knows? Maybe is for a reon or something. NO one ever tells me anything. I just get thrown in feet first, but… this is helpful. I genuinly appreciate it dude."

*

Suriel's answering smile is soft and radiant. "Call on me anytime."

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