1964-08-02 - Don't Shoot At Kwabena
Summary: Kwabena and Theresa beat up on a bad guy. Then, the African nervously offers to let her crash at his cheap-ass flop.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
theresa kwabena 

There is a lot of ways to get lost in New York, as Theresa has been finding out. Mostly due to her forgetting to pay any attention to where she turns, or even what street she might be on. This is how she ends up standing outside one of the bodegas, reading a map and practically telegraphing her touristness at high levels.

Kwabena Odame emerges from that very bodega, a brown bag in one hand and a fresh pack of menthols in the other. The darkness of his skin speaks of African heritage beyond that of American slaves; a proper immigrant. Interestingly, in spite of the hour, he's wearing sunglasses. Yet, he doesn't walk as if he is blind.

After ripping open the pack of smokes, he lights one and takes a few moments to observe the block. That's when he catches sight of Theresa, and a sigh escapes his lips. "Hey," he calls to her, his voice gruff and accented. "You lost?"

"Pardon?" Theresa responds, glancing up from the map to look around until she spots the source of the question. A quick smile smile being offered to him before she takes a step towards him, "I'm afraid that I am, lost, at that." She replies, her own voice fairly heavily accented, and an easy one to pick up. Irish.

For a moment, Kwabena's face sours. He doesn't like the Irish, but, more specifically, he doesn't like local Irish criminals who keep pushing narcotics into his neighborhood. This gal… surely can't be involved with that. The expression is brief.

"Put de map down," he instructs her between puffs of smoke. "Look like some tourist, you get mugged. Like tourist." He turns away and opens the brown paper bag with a crinkle, then a pop, and drinks from whatever bottle is contained within. "Where ah you trying to go to?" he asks.

"I am a tourist." Theresa admits, possibly not having the wisdom to deny her tourist status. But, she does fold the map and tuck it away once more, "I was looking for a place to stay for the night…" Which might be why she's in this area, although it's probably not the best neighborhood for hotels. "I saw this hotel somewhere here, from the yellow pages, but I think I might have gotten turned around anyways despite my verra best efforts."

Kwabena sighs openly, and shakes his head. "Not many around here," he tells her. "Most of dem… basically flophouse, place for lady of de night to make money. I hope you undahstand what I mean." He then motions toward a subway station not far from here. "L train, uptown, take you to midtown. Dere, you will find plenty of…"

His expression narrows, and he turns to cast a look upon a man who seems to be eyeballing them from across the street.

"Oh, I understand what you are meanin'." Theresa confirms, and she looks amused instead of surprised, or even insulted by the mention of such things. When he motions towards the subway she glances towards it, listening to what he is saying, until he comes to a stop. When that happens she glances at him, then in the direction that he's looking, "What?"

"Troubah," Kwabena mentions, while motioning in what he hopes to be a casual way toward the shady fellow across the way. "I think I recognize him. From de-"

The man across the street shifts, producing something metallic from beneath his jacket. Then comes the sound of a pop; a gunshot. Kwabena's face briefly transforms into black smoke, causing his sunglasses to drop to the sidewalk. It reforms quickly, a bullet hole pelting the wall behind him, silvery eyes exposed.

For a moment, the African seems dazed, dizzied. He reaches up to clutch at his face, seething. "Shit!"

Kwabena might not like the local Irish, but Theresa is not a local Irish. Unfortunately, the pop of a gunshot is a familiar sound from back home, even if she might have spent more of her time further to the south.

Unfortunately for him, she expects him to duck, not turn into smoke and avoid being shot that way, so when she drops out of reflex, she looks surprised by two things.

First thing. He's still standing. Second thing. He's got silver eyes and went a bit incorporeal for a moment.

Kwabena might not like the local Irish, but Theresa is not a local Irish. Unfortunately, the pop of a gunshot is a familiar sound from back home, even if she might have spent more of her time further to the south.

Unfortunately for him, she expects him to duck, not turn into smoke and avoid being shot that way, so when she drops out of reflex, she looks surprised by two things.

First thing. He's still standing. Second thing. He's got silver eyes and went a bit incorporeal for a moment.

The fellow across the street utters a curse and takes off, running. As for Kwabena, he shakes his head a moment to clear it, then shouts something in his native tongue across the street, clearly annoyed by the whole affair.

Following this, he crouches down to snatch up his sunglasses, but he hesitates in placing them back upon his nose. Clearly, at least to this party, his secret is out. He glances toward Theresa, lips pressed into a thin line. "As I said. Troubah."

"Trouble is right, darlin'." Theresa agrees, pushing herself up from where she'd dropped, hands brushing her knees off before she looks in the direction of where the man ran. Instead of being smart and running away, or just exiting like a sane person, she grins at him instead, "Shall we take the trouble to him now?"

This is not entirely expected. Kwabena hesitates for a moment, before turning to look toward Theresa. He studies the redhead for a moment, before asking, "You serious?"

Of course, she's serious.

With a grin, he nods his head toward the direction in which the fellow ran. "Den go."

With a dash, Kwabena takes off in pursuit, trusting the Irish gal will be hot on his tail.

Oh, she's so very serious.

In fact, it might be a matter of pride to knock this guy on his rear end for shooting in her direction.

As soon as he starts running, she follows him, as hot on his heels as she can be without cheating, at least.

When the crook takes a turn into a darkened alley, Kwabena doesn't falter. He skids and pivots to follow, the brown bag still held in one hand as he runs, a thumb over the lip to keep its contents from spilling.

Ahead, the would be attacker has taken to a fire escape with a desperate leap, hoping to outrun the unlikely couple who have given him pursuit. Kwabena, wanting to protect his acquisition, pauses momentarily in rose to set his brown bag on the ground.

Without a bag to protect, Theresa just rockets past Kwabena, continuing her pursuit without a moment of hesitation. In fact, instead of trying to leap after him she exposes herself a bit with the next move.

As soon as she's past Kwabena and she see's that the would be attacker is trying to move onto the fire escape her mouth opens and she screams. Thankfully she pitches the frequencies low enough that they aren't damaging to Kwabena's ears, but it's enough to propel her into the air instead of bothering with a leap that would likely fail.

Not more than a moment after Kwabena has risen does the scream resonate. While focused to give Theresa flight, it does affect him; he clutches at his ears and doubles over, mouth agape in pain.

The fleeing attacker also finds himself victim to the noise, and slips up. He topples over, catching himself on a rung of the latter, where he dangles for a few moments before slipping down, trying desperately to hold on.

Instead of trying to pull him down, Theresa lands herself on the fire escape just above him in an attempt to block his path. She steps close to the edge, speaking at a more normal volume now, "That wasn' very nice of you, shootin' at us."

As soon as the sound lets up, Kwabena is on the move again. With a grunt, he leaps up and catches the fire escape with his hands, hefting bodily until his feet find purchase upon the landing.

Meanwhile, the thug is busy sputtering. "Look, I, I wasn't, it just… I didn't mean to, I didn't know it was Sh, Sh, Shift. He can't… he can't…"

"Die?" Kwabena steps up beneath the dangling hoodlum, frowning. "I'm sure dere is some way."

A crackling sound fills the air, accompanied by the hardening of Kwabena's upper body into something solid, rock-like, and decidedly not human. "But not today."

With a heavy swing, his super-hardened arms crack the thug's legs, and the fellow falls to the landing, groaning in agony. His legs are bent oddly, clearly broken.

There is a wince at that crack, a grimace at the odd angle, but she doesn't make any kind of protest. The guy ''shot'' at them…broken legs are the least that could be done in return. "Maybe you shouldn' be shootin' at people, right luv? Just leave it be next time…"

"Listen to de lady," Kwabena backs, before turning away from the groaning criminal. He steps over the fellow and reaches a hand up toward Theresa, a smile forming upon his face. "Nice move," he offers. "Let's get down from here befah de fuzz shows up?"

"That's right, listen to the lady." Theresa agrees, giving the man a stern look that really probably looks more funny than intimidating despite the situation. Then she turns towards Kwabena, reaching out to take the offered hand, "You've got some rather nice moves yourself, there."

With a sturdy grip, Kwabena helps Theresa down to the landing. "Back at you," quips the Ghanaian. For a moment, there is a sense of hesitation; truthfully, he doesn't enjoy when his 'special talents' are revealed, but at least this time, he isn't alone.

"Not many of us, are dere?" he asks quietly, while studying the woman briefly. "Come on," he says then, before turning and climbing down the last leg of the fire escape. A short drop, and he's down to the alley pavement, looking upward to see if Theresa has any trouble following.

"I'm not sure…I've met a few over the years." Theresa admits, waiting until he's started down the ladder before she starts down as well. There doesn't appear to be much trouble following, although she does take a moment longer to measure the distance before she drops off the ladder. She holds her hands out, balancing herself before she straightens, "Thank you."

"Did not do much," answers the foreigner. "Dat voice packs one hell of a punch." He smirks then, and gives Theresa a quick upnod. "I am called Kwabena."

He waits just long enough for the gal to introduce herself, before turning silver eyes about to look down the alley with suspect. "Won't be long befah de police arrive. Come." He reaches to take her hand, should she allow it. "I know de way to go."

With that, he's off, leading Theresa down the alleyway and away from the direction where law enforcement is mostly likely to respond.

"Theresa." It's a rather quick introduction, and she lets him take her hand to lead her down the alleyway. She glances behind them, almost as though she expects to see a police officer already there chasing them down. Nothing, though, and she turns her attention forward again to where he's leading her.

The alley opens up into a street similar to the one before; decently lit for the hour, and yet, with no sign of law enforcement. There are sirens on the air, but they are coming from the block behind them, on the other end of the alleyway.

Kwabena releases her hand, but continues walking down the street. They do not want to be seen lingering near the mouth of an alley where a crime just took place. "How long have you known?" he asks, before looking her way. With better light, his eyes clearly have a human shape, but the silver in his irises seems to reflect light, much like that of a feline.

"That I was special?" Theresa wonders, falling into step with him heading away from the alley, "Since I was about twelve or thirteen, I guess. The man that raised me, my uncle, he was special, too." Which, by her tone, she realizes might make her a bit lucky in comparison to what some others go through. "And you, how long have you known?"

Kwabena looks away. A frown touches his face, suggesting his experiences weren't as comfortable as hers. "About de same," he answers. "I… change. I do not know, full well, how, but… I change." It's the only way he knows how to describe it.

Instead of offering any kind of sympathetic smile, she just nods, getting what he's saying without him saying it. "Mine is all vocal…" Theresa admits, a hand lightly waving behind them, "You're very strong, I've not really seen someone be able to do that before."

Taking it as a compliment, Kwabena smirks a bit. "I try not to," he admits. "Being… whatevah I am, and a negro? Bad combination in America." He draws a deep breath then, chest rising and falling. "Difficult to hide, dough, when dere ah goons like dat around to make de troubah." English is not his first language, so it is a struggle at times.

"Who was he, and why was he even shootin' at you?" Theresa wonders, a hand lifting up to give his arm a quick pat before she drops her hand back to her side, "Don' worry, luv, sooner or later these Yanks will figure out that there's nothin' wrong with negros…they are just comin' to it a lot slower than the rest of us seem to be."

At the touch, Kwabena can't help but smile a bit. He tries often not to show his softer side, but it's there. He reaches a hand up with intent to snake it beneath her elbow, in escort fashion.

"He called me, 'Shift'," Kwabena tells her. "Nickname some peopah gave me, when I was youngah. Mixed up in bad crowd. I drive taxi now. Honest living, but, what to say… dere ah some few ghosts from de past." He glances toward Theresa as they walk, smiling in a lopsided manner. "Good thing, dough? He was not shooting at you."

"Probably is a good thing…I'd have made a right nasty mess on the wall." Theresa agrees, laughing just a bit, accepting the hand on her elbow as she thinks, "I know a bit about that, bein' mixed up in a bad crowd." Now there is actually a sympathetic smile for him about that, one that seems to be confident in fully understanding what sort of bad crowd it might have been, too. "Goin' straight is a rather hard thing to do though, innit?"

A glance is given to Theresa when she mentions being mixed up in a bad crowd. Folks who have been there can smell it, and right now, it smells true. His eyebrows rise briefly before he looks away, watching the street ahead.

"Can be," he tells her. "Keep yah head down, do de job, try not to blow up any city blocks." The last remark brings a knowing smirk; surely he hasn't blown up any city blocks!

"Good thing he was shooting at me," he says then, before briefly touching her forearm with his hand. "Waste of a lovely face, to be smeared on a wall, yes?"

"I've never blown up a city block…I'm not sure I could." Which, considering she seems thoughtful about it that might be a bit of a scary moment before she shakes it off, dropping the thought of 'could she?' rather quickly. "I do try to keep my head down, but my luck is rather terrible for keepin' out of trouble."

She glances at him, smiling again, "Hopefully, he wont be shootin' at you again, either."

At that, Kwabena laughs out loud. It's a hearty laugh, one that comes from his belly. "No, Theresa," he answers. "I do not think he will shoot at anyone for some time now."

When they come upon an intersection, he stops then and turns to look her way, arm still in arm. "You ah still looking for some place for sleep, yes?" he asks.

"Yeah, I am.." Theresa replies, glancing around as though she expects to suddenly see the mythical hotel she's been hunting for right there. When it still doesn't materialize out of the air, she glances up at him, expression growing a bit hopeful.

Kwabena looks around a bit. The subway station is back where the cops will be, investigating the trouble that was brewing. Then he looks back toward Theresa, considering.

"I can find you somewhere," he tells her. "Somewhere safe. Dis is a city I know well." There is a pause, perhaps a touch of hesitation. "I can also let you have safe place where I live. Is not far. Small, but, how is it to say, cozy?"

When he offers his place she grows a little bit dubious, "Are you sure? I wouldn't want to be in your way, and you don't know me…" Theresa shakes her head a bit, potentially worried that he might regret the kindness if her own trouble comes knocking, or she makes a mess.

"You ah Theresa", he answers, "and you have, a gift. Like me." Kwabena looks her way again, only this time, he drops his hand to find hers again, fingers seeking to curl around hers in an effort of providing comfort. "Do not worry. If troubah finds you?" He smiles. "I am strong, and will fight."

"Thank you, Kwabena." Theresa replies, slowing down on the name, making certain that she doesn't inadvertantly mangle the pronounciation. She gives his hand a quick squeeze, both in acceptance of the comfort and the offer, "Very well, then. Show me to your small, but cozy home."

"Is not far," he tells her, before leading her across the street on a walk signal. Indeed, it would seem he was only out for a stroll; in short time they come upon an apartment building, to which Kwabena produces a key and unlocks the door. His place is four floors up, and once he opens it up, it is in fact cozy.

As with most New York apartments, everything is crammed into one room. The kitchen is on the far end, a bed on the other, with a couch and record player between both. A small bathroom is the only place that offers privacy, and a single window reveals a wonderful view of the building next door; specifically, its brick wall.

"Home, sweet home," be announces, with humor in his tone. "Best real estate on de island."

"It's a home, luv, those are hard won, no matter how small or…" Theresa pauses, looking out the window before she continues, "Blessed with panoramic views." She nods towards the couch, starting towards it without seeming to be bothered by the cramped state of the main room, "Do you have a spare blanket? I don't need much."

"You have dat right," Kwabena tells her. When asked for a spare blanket, he suddenly seems concerned. "Oh. I, well. I think… yes. I do." He makes for the closet, rummaging around even though he knows there isn't a spare in there. Moments later, he comes over to the couch with the blanket from his own bed, having tried (and not so well) to hide where it came from. "Here you are," he tells her, offering the item over.

The attempt at deception doesn't seem to go over as well as he might hope, judging by the look she gives him when he offers the blanket to her. "No." Theresa shakes her head at him, reaching out to push the blanket back towards him, "You've invited me into your home, I'm not goin' to take the blanket off your bed. I've slept in rougher places, I'll be just fine."

"So have I," Kwabena answers. When she pushes the blanket back toward him, he catches her hands within the folds of fabric, and guides her then over toward his bed.

"You take bed," he insists. "Is only best for guest," he adds, "and for a woman who is lovely." He jerks his head toward the couch. "I sleep dere all de time, anyway. I insist, Theresa."

When he guides her over to the bed, she doesn't put up any argument. But when there, she pushes the blanket back towards him, "Fine, I won't fight you on the bed, but then you take the blanket." She nods towards the couch, "Give you some luxury since you are kindly giving up your bed for me."

At this, Kwabena laughs. "You ah stubborn girl!" he retorts. "No, no. Is not kind in my culture. Come now." He throws the blanket onto his bed, then lifts his eyebrows. "Do not make me put you in bed. I am strong man, will make sure you have de blanket." The words are not a threat; in fact, there is a playful undertone to them. "If you keep insisting, I will have to move couch and stick feet undah de blanket, or else I will have to insist we share bed. I am trying to be, how to say it, gentahman. Yes?"

"I'm very stubborn." Theresa replies with a grin, glancing from the bed back towards the couch, then back to the bed, measuring the distance. She doesn't seem to disbelieve that he'll drag the couch over, her arms then crossing over her chest, "Fine. We'll both take the bed, and the blanket, and then no one is being rude or inhospitable."

"Fine," Kwabena answers. He walks around the bed to the other side, and sits down. Kicking off his shoes one at a time, he remarks, "Is plenty of blanket, but bed is not huge. If you try and take de whole bed, den I will get stubborn!" He laughs at that, before pulling the blanket back and climbing in.

"If it comes to that, we'll fight for the bed." Theresa settles down on the edge of the bed herself, reaching down to tug her shoes off before she moves to get under the covers. Despite the joking, she's careful to not take up any more space on the bed than she actually needs, tucking an arm beneath her head, "Thank you, again."

"I think you could scream," Kwabena says, "and send me into coma. I would fall on de floor like sack of potatoes."

Once they are nestled in, he lets loose a long sigh, and finally relaxes. A glance is given her way to make sure she has enough blanket, which is when he notices that she's using her arm as an extra pillow.

"You ah welcome," he tells her with sincerity. There is a long pause, before he reaches out to touch Theresa's arm. "Is… comfortable?" he asks. "Or… ah, would you… prefer, um… my shouldah?" He blushes then, and tries to explain. "Is cozy, like pillow."

"I probably could, but that'd be very ungrateful of me considering you're giving me a place to sleep." Theresa replies, glancing over at him when he asks if she's comfortable. There are a multitude of answers that she could give, but then she nods, "I'm sure that it is very pillow like." She scoots herself over at that, resting her head on his shoulder, getting herself comfortable.

"Maybe not as soft," Kwabena answers, "but-" He cuts himself off when she scoots over, and a smile spreads across his face.

The African drapes his arm beneath so that she can find a comfortable spot on his shoulder, then gently rests his hand upon her shoulder. "Is comfortable," he whispers, finding comfort in having her head close to his, resting there. His body seems tense, at first, but it softens with every heartbeat.

It's possible she could have slept on the floor without difficulty, by the time he has relaxed she's already fallen asleep, judging by her own relaxed state. At least she doesn't snore in her sleep, which might make him quickly rethink his kindness.

It isn't long before Kwabena has drifted himself, a matter of seconds in fact. Fortunately, he is not one to snore either, though his would likely not have nearly the same effect.

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