1964-08-13 - Rain is a Good Thing
Summary: The weather rolls off of Roy and Tanya like water off a duck's back - except only metaphorically, they're both soaked to their skin on the rooftop, let's be honest here.
Related: None
Theme Song: None
tanya roy 

It's raining.

A good New York rain; it's late summer, so warm enough that the rain comes from upland instead of the coast, and hammers down the heat of the day. Old buildings with asphalt roofs and blackened walls absorb a lot of heat, and the stone fairly groans with relief as the water pours down and beats the heat into submission.

Roy's apartment has a rooftop; of course, the locked door is no barrier. He's got a crow's nest there, rigged up with a spectacular array of contingencies and secrets in case he makes an urgent escape.

At the moment, he and Tanya are alone up there, enjoying the sussurance of the weather. Roy doesn't seem to mind the rain and Tanya enjoys it; a little lean-to shelter protects their food and drink from the water, but the two of them are hand in hand, looking over the city's skies swept clear by the rainstorm.


The backrush of the wind brings the brilliance of freshly-fallen water into their faces and Tanya inhales deeply only to sigh it out again. She's utterly relaxed, leaning hip to hip with the rangy Archer, and gives his hand a gentle squeeze.

"It's amazing how the rain clears out the air. It's still muggy, which is unfortunate, but it's a different kind of muggy than where I used to live." A bite of her sandwich stoppers up her musings and she's silent while she chews — at least, until she speaks around her mouthful. "It doesn't feel like lightning though."


"Still humid," Roy agrees, his hands empty; his food is on a plate in the little cabin, though it's a shanty really at best. He can't stop observing the city; every twitch of a curtain, a car backfiring, a window slamming. Each and every one gets a sharp twitch of his eyes, though he's otherwise as still as a statue; one more gargoyle letting the water pour over it, weathered muscle instead of old stone as water courses in rivulets over his bare back.

"I'm used to the desert," he says, a few minutes later. "Thunderstorms are dangerous in the open plain. A lightning strike will hit the tallest thing for miles. Found a horse that got killed by a strike once."

He sniffs the air. "Clouds are too high up for lightning though, and the water would pull them off anyway."


Tanya nods thoughtfully, ignoring the way her hair clings to her cheeks and her sodden shirt heavily. Her gaze rises to the heavens above, with their argent hues and portly billows of clouds.

"You'll have to tell me about the desert. It makes sense, lightning striking the tallest thing." She shoves the rest of the sandwich in her mouth and talks around it again. "I've never been to the desert. Well, not properly, y'know. In passing, sure." Swallow, gluck, cough, throat-clearing. Must not have chewed well enough.


"It's big," Roy says. "Not as big as the ocean," he concedes, a beat later. "You can see the distance. Little hills and dunes. Scrub brush. Maybe mountains," he suggests. He reaches for Tanya's beer and hands it to her, still watching the city.

"The Sonora desert is full of prickle cactus and red dirt. It's dry but you can survive if you know where to look for water," he tells her.

"I've only seen pictures of the real deep desert though. Where it's nothing but twisting sand dunes. Timbisha — the Death Valley — isn't even all that bad, compared to the heavy sands."


"Sounds like hell," Tanya comments as she takes the offered beer. Something light for her, nothing too heavy and certain to get her buzzed too quickly. She licks the rainwater collected about its opening before sipping. "I bet people think it's pretty. Sounds like sand would get everywhere."

There's a little emphasis on 'everywhere' that implies basically what anyone's thinking. Shoes and socks too, of course.


The little joke and insouciant tone get a glance and a short, faint grin from Roy. Amused by her implication. Contrary to some suspicions, Roy does have a sense of humor. He just doesn't share it readily, or with many people.

"Right between your toes," he agrees, bantering with the curvaceous woman at his side — and giving her clinging, dampened shirt a pointed glance of flickering appreciation, before looking back at her fine features.

"It's not as bad as a lot of bilag — as a lot of people think," he tells her. "Travel at night. Drink water frequently. Eat often but don't waste food. Once your body gets used to the heat and water loss it's nowhere near as bad as you think."


Tanya glances over at Roy, quirking an eyebrow as she smiles faintly.

"I'm sorry, what? Bilag- what? Would those be folk concerned about sand between their toes and other delicate places?" The way she deliberately minces over those last few words brings more of a smirk to the expression in the end. A little hipbump is all affection.


"Bilagaana," Roy explains, moving about a fraction of an inch when he's bumped. "Means 'white people'," he says, shifting a bit on his seat and propped his shoes against the low shelf of the rooftop's faux-battlements, scraping at concrete and asphalt.

"Travellers mostly. People who'd never been outside of Phoenix or Mesa, they'd come to the desert and complain about the heat and the water. They'd get lost hiking or collecting rocks, two days on the plains with no water. No desert-sense," he clarifies. "It gets a little tiresome the third time you have to pull someone out of an arroyo cluster because they've forgotten which direction north is."


"Huh." Another sip of beer to wet her mouth. The wind breezes past again, bringing a momentarily heavier spattering of rain, and Tanya momentarily lifts her face into it. Another big sigh. "Bilagaana." No guarantee she pronounces the word correctly at all. "So…desert-sense would be those things you mentioned earlier. Travel at night, don't waste water, don't eat like a pig or you'll starve."

she makes a face and looks to him again. "You totally ate a tarantula once, didn't you? No, wait, don't tell me, blughghgh," and she accents the sound with a shudder of her shoulders.


"Too much hair," Roy says, grinning at Tanya's reaction. "And the legs wiggle on the way down."

He chuckles and brushes his palm against the curve of her spine, dismissing his words with a shake of his head.

"I'm kidding. Snake's good though. Jackrabbit. There's a lot of food in the desert if you're not picky and know where to look," he tells her. "Insects aren't bad. I don't know why New Yorkers are so squeamish about 'em."


She definitely makes a face, her nose wrinkling up in the universal display of disgust.

"That's because the cockroaches are a plague and so are the flies. Don't even try to convince me to eat those garbage-lurkers. And rabbit? Really? They're too cute to eat." A smack of her lips and Tanya squeezes at his hand again. "You mean rattlesnakes too, don't you. This does not sound like a vacation to me, Captain." She uses the old nickname with an uncharacteristic note of fondness in it.


"Didn't say it was for fun," Roy tells Tanya, interlacing his fingers with her and squeezing gently. "Just survival. Don't go into the city if you don't know how to avoid the bad parts of town; don't go into the desert if you can't live off the land," he says, rolling his bare shoulder with a shrug.

"I won't make you eat cockroaches," he assures her, leaning sideways and kissing her damp cheekbone. "Grasshopper, maybe," he muses, that faint suggestion of a grin returning.


"Grasshopper, really? Rooooooy. Noooooooo," Tanya whinges, very deliberately given the carrying pitch of the word and the faux-grimace at the smooch on the cheek. Turning her head in false modesty still curves the line of her body up against his and he's warm, as usual, despite the soaking of the falling rain. She's not cold yet, but rather reaching the edges of considering the state. The wind hasn't kicked up and the precipitation has slowed — but only slightly. It's a proper soaker, this cloudburst even without the thunder and lightning.

"I take it back about wanting to visit the desert now. If I'm getting sand anywhere, it's at the beach. Mmm, I can see it now…lounging on towels, drinking Mai-Tais, volleyball and the sound of the surf. Now that is a vacation." And a firm nod to boot as she takes a moment to tuck wetted waves away from her face, grinning up a storm.


"Sounds nice," Roy agrees, turning his head upwards as if sensing something in the air. Moments later — the heavy KRAKOOOM of thunder some miles out, almost more felt in the chest than heard by the ears.

"C'mon. I need another beer," he says, getting to his feet after making sure Tanya won't take a spill once he's moved away. He steps into the shanty, brushing water from his face and hair; a fine mist wafts from his short-cropped red bristles, standing stiff despite the heavy wetness clinging to them. He rummages around for a pair of beers in a cooler, and looks a question at Tanya, wiggling one at her with his fingers wrapped around the slender neck of the brown bottle.


Okay, okay, Tanya's very impressed at his ability to possibly predict the incoming wave of thunder and she smiles at his bared shoulderblades as they both retreat into the shanty. It's warmer in here, still somewhat muggy, and it makes it blatantly obvious that she's soaked to the skin. Roy fills the air with tiny droplets in passing by mussing his ruddy hair, she squeezes out enough rain that it makes a heavy splattering on the roof's surface.

Still curling her brunette locks tightly to her skull in an effort to get out the excess water, she nods and tilts her head towards a small table within the shanty; set it down there, the motion seems to imply. Next, the hem of her shirt, and she's definitely leaving a puddle where she stands.

"Any towels in here?"


Roy flicks off the bottletops with a thumbnail. The steel caps rattle and clink along the rooftop, bobbling against tiny aggregate and asphalt before rolling to a stop. He swigs down one and sets the other near Tanya's elbow, in reaching distance. At her question he glances around, then goes for a duffel bag and digs out a thin, well-worn old military surplus towel. Stiff, well worn cotton, but serviceable; he shakes it out and hands it to Tanya, before setting his beer aside and unbuttoning his jeans, shucking them off in favor of the brief shorts under them, and squeezing the jeans clean before draping them over the back of a chair to dry out. It'll be tomorrow before they're wearable, certainly.

He sits on the narrow cot and reaches under it for another duffel bag, pulling through the clothing for warm socks and another pair of well-worn carpenter's jeans.


Any port in a storm. The Mamba takes the towel from the man and begins to work the damp from her hair once again, looking for all that she's recently emerged from the shower having entered it fully-clothed. An appreciative once-over is given to his minorly-clad figure and she slouches just a little. Contropassto pose — it does such things for the feminine form.

"You're always prepared. I like that," she murmurs softly, truth in the words.


It's a subtly seductive poise; not a pronounced curve of hip and shoulder, designed to entice with specific angles. Though Roy assuredly couldn't define the word for her posture, much less spell it, he appreciates the subtle candor of her unspoken language; alluring without being enticing. A nuanced shift in the metric of their engagement of late, with less of the prevaricarious feints and fencing of their earlier liasions.

He takes her with with a flickering gestalt glance, and grins. A little expression, save for how well she knows him now.

"I got caught unprepared once," he tells her, setting the clothes aside and balance his palms on the cot's edge; ropy muscle climbs along his triceps to his shoulders. "Out in the rocks. Got lost for three days. Didn't bring enough food or water. Promised myself I wouldn't let it happen again," he explains, as if it were just that simple.

"A little foresight's all it takes. Clean clothes. Weapons. Cash and passports if I need 'em," he tells her. "Getting caught with your pants down isn't always fun," he says, with a sly twinkle in his eye for the curvy woman sitting at the low camping table.


Tanya listens, her attention on him — well, mostly, save for her efforts at patting the water from her shirt. Oh yes, wet shirt. The grin is returned with a less pronounced mirroring of her lips, still that smirk Roy knows so well on her malleable lips.

"Aw, and here I thought we were having lots of fun. I especially liked how the taxi swerved and honked at you," says she of the olive-green eyes that laugh at the Archer from behind smokey lashes. Perched on the chair, she continues mopping at the flat of her collarbone even as she sips at the beer, covered in condensation as it is.


Roy stares at Tanya, then suddenly bursts out with a laugh. It's short, but sincere and full of humor, changing the tenor of his low, raspy baritone.

"I honestly wasn't even thinking of that," he confesses a moment later. "I was talking about the other night at your apartment," he tells her. "Good memory. I'd forgotten," he muses, shaking his head with a chuckle.

He gets to his feet and crosses the short space between them, though there's almost no point in even rising; he presses a rough kiss to her cheek and with a featherlight touch, flicks the tip of her nose with his middle finger. "I wouldn't have guessed that'd be the story behind the first time you got my pants off, but it's a good one," he says, with that easy, low grin belied by a glittering in his hazel eyes.


A wiggle of said little nose is followed by a sincere grin.

"Hey, you were the one putting hands where they shouldn't be. I don't care if it would put petty thieves to shame — tsk," and she shakes a finger at him as she slings the towel about her neck. Leaning on the table, Roy is subjected to another appreciative once-over. "I'd forgotten entirely about the other night at my apartment."

Ooh. What a tease.


"Shouldn't be?" Roy asks, answering her bantering tone with one of his own, gripping her wagging finger in midair and holding it in the callused curl of his fingers. He rests his hips on the table near where Tanya props on her elbow.

"As I recall you were getting pretty handsy yourself. Maybe I misread the situation." He jostles her hand back and forth, not letting go of her index finger as he chucks her slender chin. "Where should my hands be? You wanna do it bible camp style — eighteen inches apart at all times, hands on our laps?"


"If your hands were in your lap, I'd be able to drink my beer — and eighteen inches apart would mean very little in the end," says Tanya in the most provocative manner. There's all sorts of terrible ideas there to take root, if one has an active imagination. "I've never been to bible camp. Sounds boring."

A low rill of laughter and she directs Roy's knuckles to her mouth. A lingering kiss there and she observes him through her lashes. Then comes the shiver, well and truly a sign of the poor thing getting cold. "You wouldn't happen to have another towel, would you…?"


Roy glances around. The cold doesn't seem to be bothering him; then again, little does. It's getting a bit late too, as the sun sets and the twilight dance of New York's coast lights come on.

"C'mere." He nudges Tanya to her feet and towards the cot; a blanket is produced, sturdy wool wrapped and sewn into a soft cotton sack. He wraps it around Tanya's shoulders, then moves to dig out a little hurricane lantern and a small oil heater. Both are ignited with a snaphiss of a match, one pouring low, lurid orange light into the shanty; the other filling the shelter with heat. Crude though it looks, the little shack's well insulated.

"I like to come up here. During the evenings," Roy says. "It's quiet here. Hard to get really silent without leaving the city," he concedes, as the lantern warms the shack up.


Snuggled up within the woolen confines of the procured blanket and with the small room quickly heating, Tanya would be loathe to admit finding any fault in her current status. Leaning heavily against the Archer, she lets out a slow sigh of contentment.

"I know what you mean," she murmurs in the warm closeness of the shanty. Her head rests upon what she can reach, maybe his shoulder if circumstances allow it. "I could definitely nap in here without being worried about the sounds reaching me. You'll make a good body pillow," she adds, shamelessly.


It takes some finagling to get them both comfortable; Roy sits with his shoulders against the back of the shanty, arms and legs encircling Tanya as she nestles against him. "You would probably be more comfortable if you weren't wearing wet clothing, y'know," he says dryly — but he doesn't seem to object to her leaning against him in the slightest, despite the damp still clinging to her clothes. He helpfully brushes some dark locks from her brow and his fingers rake gently through her hair while the lantern burns low, casting their shadows into deep relief against the plywood walls of the shanty. Cars can be heard; but only distantly, muted by height and the wetness of the full night air. Another rolling peal of thunder booms, a few miles off.


Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License