1964-09-08 - Wickedness in High Places
Summary: All is not quiet in the kingdom of Lux. The hunt begins and a light in the darkness draws too much attention for anyone's good!
Related: None
Theme Song: None
bucky harper lucian rosemarie 

Harper has had a bad night.

It was a standard protection op. Or at least, that's what everything that went before it indicated. The job came through the usual channels, was vetted the usual ways. Just a look-out for a meeting between representatives of the Irish gang and representatives of the Italian mafia. Make sure no one was up to anything underhanded. She went ahead to scout out the site, as usual. She showed up for the meeting, as usual.

Unfortunately for Harper, that was when 'as usual' ended.

There were representatives from both groups present, yes. But with them was something altogether more terrifying. Remembering the scriptures of her youth, she was suddenly struck with the realization of why an angels first words were always 'Be not afraid.' Because there was one with the men. And as they were speaking, it turned, and it pointed right at her, despite her invisibility. And she was afraid.

She's been running for the last six hours now, traveling the rooftops and the sewers of the city, trying to reach a safe spot. But the first of her safe houses she reached, they found her. And the second had already been hit. She's at the end of her rope, one arm wrapped around her ribs, bruised, scraped, and bleeding as she stumbles in through the doors, the invisibility in which she shrouds herself flickering enough to make her seem a ghost.

The sound of shouting and gunfire that follows behind her, however, is most certainly not a ghost.

Behind the door is the very definitely not angelic metal-armed bouncer. Not that the arm's on display - he's in one of his usual plain but well-cut suits. The glassware is sparkling, as usual, because Buck has to have something to do with his hands when he's not actually on door duty. That flicker of motion makes him look up….and the sounds of voices raised and gunfire has him reaching carefully back beneath his jacket, sneaking the Walther around under the line of the bar, and glancing down to check clip and chamber. Of course it's in perfect working order, he's utterly OCD about his equipment….but he feels that much better for having it in hand.

The process of recuperation boggled Rosemarie, in the end. That, ample rest, and some toasted cheese and tomato soup made for a shorter period of convalescence and after a slightly uncomfortable phone call to the library to explain her absence, the brunette is ensconced in one of the booths on the main club floor.

She's got iced water in a glass, nothing alcoholic, and she's appreciating the way the light glints from the glassy surface of the grand piano centrally located when the chaos can be heard. Beneath her freckles, she pales slightly and looks to the various servers about the floor, including Bucky behind the bar. The Otherness is immediately on-guard within her subconscious. Crests are sure to follow after another few notches of her blood pressure.

The supernatural community beyond the grey veil of everyday existence operates according to specific rules. These rules rarely reach to all corners; for how could they, given the diverse population and nature of those bound up by mutated genetics, magic or predilection? No single universal social law binds them all, but one comes close in this particular fiefdom.

Keep your personal shit out of Lux. Disagree? Then someone with a metal arm or a disturbing resemblance to a world-famous rock star will toss the offending figures out on their ear. When that doesn't work, there's all those debts and delicately chained obligations keeping the peace. And when that fails?

Many of the Host who opted to follow opportunity's knocking are on the staff. Other things, like Anahita, are old enough to be a concern. It's Ana at the bar tonight. Mazikeen is conveniently out of sight but Lucian looks up for no apparent reason. Not quite.

Business doesn't apply to him at the moment. Not except for a series of reports pushed on to him for antique swords, fancy swords, and neat swords on the market. It pays to look for the artifacts of ancient epochs just in case something neat shows up.

That Harper runs into Lux gives the gangsters a moment of pause. They know that strange things can happen to people who trespass here. New York's less obvious laws of territory are in their blood.

But the angel who's on the hunt? He cares exactly nothing for who else might be here. He has a mission. You see, Nadiriel was tasked with bringing down Harper's mother. And the realization that he missed a child has been needling him for years now. The creature needs to be exterminated. Preferably before anyone else realizes he made a mistake.

Nadiriel strides into the club like he owns the place, starry eyes hard and sharp as adamantium. And when he steps inside, drawing a blade from between his shoulders, the gun-armed gangsters follow.

Harper wastes no time herself - she heads directly for the bar, diving behind it and pressing her back to the wood as she seeks a moment to figure out just what she ought to do next.

Diving right next to the Winter Soldier, who is so very not happy to see whatever it is that just walked in. Bucky glances down at her. "Out the back," he tells her, softly. "Through the door behind me, down the hallway, left at the T-intersection, it'll get you out into the alley." There's that disturbing coldness in his eyes. Xavier may have imprisoned Winter, but he's still offering his opinions.

Then he's turning that pale stare on the newcomer, nothing daunted. "You need to leave," he tells them, in that flat voice, English gone edged and precise: he's thinking in Russian, always a bad sign. "You get one warning."

Oh yes, a man drawing a sword from some hidden sheath on his back is definitely a disturbance. Rosemarie freezes up in her place at the back horseshoe curve of the booth, her nails attempting to dig into the surface of the table there.

Guns bring back memories from not so long ago and those crests in azurine unfurl from beneath her chestnut curls. Itching at her back, between scapulae, heralds the nearness of fledgling Shi'ar wings and the destruction of another sweater. Her pupils, ringed in orange, have gone pinpoint.

Whether or not Harper can be seen, she certainly can be heard and the rattle of footsteps against the marble and granite countertop gives away all a smart person needs. The strawberry blonde bartender, Ana, halts in mixing up something in a metal shaker. Her expression hardens slightly, pupils widening when her gaze is unfocused. While they may have a fine assassin as a bouncer, she's been turning human expectations inside out for a good long time.

Her boss is another matter entirely. He examines his sleeve and cuff, then sets down the paperwork that formerly interested him. Drawing Lucian's attention out of reading at any time of day or night takes considerable effort. Someone barging through isn't enough to do it. But a sword? His summer-sky eyes take in the blade to identify materials, provenance, and Nadiriel's particular stance with relative interest. "My goodness, and no one told me we were to expect this party until eleven-thirty." The English accent rolls with a rich stoicism, vaguely sardonic. The world is his private joke. "Ma'am, you'll probably need to vacate the booth and follow his lead." A vague nod in Bucky's direction.

He's interested. Interested enough to look from man to man. Thine are the sins…

"Can't," Harper pants to Bucky with a desperate shake of her head, all attempts at invisibility dropped as she hides behind the bar. "Been running…six hours. Burned two safe houses. Out of ammo ages ago. Burned light." As if reminded by explaining, she fumbles up behind her for the orange juice used for mixers, quickly chugging down on it. Only after that does she look back up to Ana, with just enough grace to look a little bit ashamed.

"I'm sorry," she says quietly, trying to peer up over her shoulder. "I just…This was the last place I thought they might now follow."

"Nowhere left to hide, little one," Nadiriel calls out to the club at large with a smile so beautiful it could cut, holding his arms out to his sides. "You gave it a good fight, but you can't stand against the true-" First Bucky interrupts him. He could ignore the insolent human. But there are other things in this bar, as he's beginning to notice just as Lucian stands.

"Brother?" He scoffs, turning to take a closer look around. "Well. That I did not expect."

Buck glances down at her again. "They're in for a nasty fucking surprise," he informs her, sotto voce. "If you can't run, then stay right there. Bar's real solid." There's a glance between Lucian and Nadiriel. They sure as hell don't *look* like brothers. "Doesn't matter whose brother you are," Bucky says, voice still flat, as he simply pops over the bar with a one-handed vault, rather than running around it. He shouldn't've abandoned cover, but now he's more of a target to draw ire or fire as needed. "You don't come in here brandishing weapons. So put up the pigsticker, Galahad."

As Lucian says, so mote it be and all that good stuff. After all, his club, his rules, and this librarian's not going to cross what she considers to be a living legend.

Carefully, as to avoid drawing attention to herself, she makes her way to the edge of the booth's seating. All the while, she's eyeing the interlopers with sword and firearm and weighing the chance that she can make it over to the bar without attracting further attention — after all, the back way out of the club is in that direction.

Lucian needs one of three things, and none are immediately at hand. He can sacrifice the cigarette, forsake the drink, but the sword truly is a loss. Oh well, there happens to be one at hand as appropriate. The other patrons of Lux might sense trouble and think to retreat if they can, though those on the main floor have less of an easy time of it.

"Brother," he repeats. The arid wasteland of two syllables holds the dessicated contempt the English are so famous for, delivered with all the razzle-dazzle charm of a louche of a club owner. "That is quite the step up in the world for you to claim. Your friends can be patrons for the night. But be sensible. That," he nods at the sword, "isn't acceptable. Tell them to put the pieces away or they won't have them, period. Now, what's your poison?"

No, ladies, he's not paying attention to you. There's an older law at play here.

Nadiriel laughs at Bucky's warning, cruel smile deepening as he sheathes the sword at his spine…only for a pair of dazzling wings to burst out in its place. And a blast of light, aimed at Bucky's chest, just for insolence. He doesn't even watch to see if it lands.

The men behind the angel are a mixed bunch. Irish and Italian, yes, but they can't quite decide how they're meant to react to this. Some watch the angel with awe, while others shift nervously behind him, uncertain if they should risk starting something here. One, though, seems to have ambitions of his own. While most eyes are on the angel's display, he starts to edge toward the bar.

"We all knew you'd given up on the greater plan," Nadiriel replies to Lucian. "But I didn't quite expect to find you harboring one of the…creatures."

Harper, meanwhile, has just about finished the carafe of orange juice, eyes closed and breath still quick as she waits for the sugar to hit her bloodstream.

The Soldier manages to sidestep, but doesn't return fire. If it has wings and can shoot beams of light, chances are excellent even an alloy arm won't stop it. The man edging towards the bar will find a Walther aimed at him. Only a PPK, but that's still enough to kill. "Nuh uh," he tells the angel's henchmen.

Excellent, she's the lesser of interests for the man with the cold bright eyes and the gun-toting back-up. Rosemarie slips from the booth and then minces to the bar and around its back, keeping her head down and steps light. It's no assassin's creep and really not skillful in the end, but her goal is to make it to the point where she can speak with the blonde young woman who came in, half-wreathed in invisibility. Once, the librarian might have fled or squealed or gone feathery right off the bat.

Still, as she crouches down, she searches out Harper and holds out a hand.

"C-C-Come on, they w-w-w-will d-d-distract them f-f-for us," she whispers…rather squeakily. The midnight-blue crests of curved feathers perk up slightly. Hopefully those raptor-golden eyes aren't too startling.

A chorus of gasps and screams punctuates the commotion deeper in Lux where the softness of conversation once dominated. Glasses drop to the floor. People remembering their way to the bathrooms might make use of it, but the place is partly subterranean. Going up means passing the undating glass sheets in a living, physical appearance of a luminous wave. Their distress ticks two checkboxes no one wanted.

A dark-skinned woman up to relative amounts of no good throws down her book and skives off, slouching towards the mezzanine landing. All it takes is a scream of 'angel' to bring her forth, a wicked omen.

"Your feathers are smouldering." He almost yawns it.

Lucian never loses that smile. His eyebrow arches slightly. He doesn't extend his hand or make a show, but the light bends back on its trajectory to him, striking some invisible barrier and dissipating. The shot light does that. So do the Edison bulb casting their dim incandescence, tungsten filaments heating up without the commensurate illumination shed. Giving Nadiriel a pointed look, the Morningstar moves to rub his jaw. That's when the soulfire blossoms, one point leaping to another in a chained arc. Steel bodies and wooden stocks are not much to that, consumed in a moment, vaporized atoms blown apart. "Your companions are somewhat brighter than you."

Harper stiffens and opens her eyes when Rosemarie starts to move behind the counter, snatching a citrus knife from behind her and holding it out before she realizes the other woman is (probably) not a threat. She shakes her head though, pushing herself up a little straighter against the wood of the bar. "Got nowhere left to run right now," she murmurs. "That thing…"

As the orange juice reaches her stomach, sugar slowly starting to leach back into her bloodstream, she turns to set a hand against the bar. It takes some power, careful work, but eventually she's able to look out into the club as if the bar were made of glass…while it still looks solid from the other side. Just in time to see Lucian's display of power, eyes widening as she feels it as well.

When Lucian's soul fire obliterates the guns in their hands, the gangsters hiss and yelp, taking a step back. It's good timing for the one Bucky's staring down - he was about to make a very bad decision about trying to get the jump on the Winter Soldier.

"Lucian," Nadiriel sighs. "This is all unnecessary, really. I've no intention of intruding upon your…kingdom." He sneers at the last, taking a look around the club once more. "Send out the girl, and I'll be on my way."

So, he's always suspected Lucian was something extraordinary. So there's part of Bucky that isn't surprised by Lucian just manifesting this craziness. Puzzled, but….not really surprised. "What the hell," It's a mild observation, rather than a shocked explanation. He doesn't shoot the fool - it helps that he's now apparently the only mortal with a working firearm in the club. He's still got his gaze fixed on the mortal goons, though. Lucian can take care of the angel.

Rosemarie's ducked behind the bar and misses out on the impressive display of soulfire. On some level, however, she elementally senses it and it's enough to set the Shi'ar warbird sentience to tingling through her veins. She's got a tenuous grip on the secondary personality and it shows in her grimace.

The hand rejected curls back towards her chest and she glances up, not daring to peek over the bar. "If-f-f they're g-g-going t-to f-f-fight, w-we n-need to g-go!" she hisses again, absolutely convinced that those that sneak and run away live to…live another day?

"Nadiriel," purrs the blond man, his suit not out of place. The odor of metal vaporized in intense heat is unpleasant, at least for anyone who has to breathe. It's curiously optional for the elders of existence. "You do forget your place alongside Mesamsiel and Ahiel, keepers of the offerings. This is very much my kingdom. Terms were offered that you violated." His eyes thin slightly in speculative regard. The humans are watching, and he knows this. He may also be aware of Mazikeen on the balcony, possibly measuring a jump with a pair of wicked silvery swords — too long for knives — pulled from nowhere. He isn't gauging how fast Bucky can shoot and at what trajectory. "You violate the simplest of laws on presumption that the First of the Firstborn does not recall the plan of creation in its entirety."

Talk, talk, talk. The reasonable, soft words ripe with mellifluous hostility linger in the space. "There are multiple girls in here. Force any of them and you violate His law. Do consider if it's really worth the little show for your lackeys there. Convincing them to worship you? Tsk. He won't like that."

"I'm not letting someone else fight for me," Harper shakes her head to Rosemarie. "Or running when I could be figuring out what in the hell is chasing me." Now that she's had a moment to catch her breath, she's got a bit more steel in her spine.

"Lo, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death," one of the Irish behind Nadiriel begins to recite. "Saints and angels preserve us." One of the Italians - a middle-aged man with the look of the army about him, has his own prayer. "In name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. St. Michael the Archangel, illustrious leader of the heavenly army, defend us in the battle against principalities and powers, against the rulers of the world of darkness and the spirit of wickedness in high places," he recites, crossing himself as he goes.

With his back to them, Nadiriel can afford to roll his eyes, giving a little sigh. "We do our Father's great work, enforcing his law, Lucian. The nephilim. Send her out. Or do you have more than one of those in here as well?"

"Fuck that," Bucky says, under his breath. "I'll take some help direct from the spirit of wickedness," He glances back at the girls, hiding behind the bar. Then, pitched to Nadiriel, as if it were her decision. "No," he says, his voice low, ugly, but pitched to carry. "You can't have her."

"B-B-Being st-t-tupid isn't g-going to h-help anyone!" Rosemarie hisses rather waspishly at Harper. She wants badly to peek up over the bartop, but that puts a head in clear view as a target and these men probably scoff at such a carnival level of ease.

She winces and touches at one of the crests. The Shi'ar wants out, badly, and wants to tangle with the ones wielding firearms above all else, but that's misplaced vengeance and the mortal wants nothing with that right now.

For a moment, he laughs. Shining laughter that could stop birds singing in the trees and Venus in her orbit, the kind they never hear in this place. Sound should not have the presence of an orchestra, swaddling the mind in silk sheets, fresh petrichor and the warmth of a warm bed on a snowy night. But there it is, the nexus of the impossible.

"Where were you when the night was divided from day? Ah, that's right. Fucking nowhere, a smattering of nothingness because there were another billion years before we got around to suggesting your host rake the incense." Reality distorts at the fringes of a man in a black and white suit, the mask skewing. Not a man at all, no more than Michelangelo made the Pieta a plain statue. He's simultaneously six feet some inches and filling the room. A thin rime of light coaxed from gold-spun hair emanates in a disk, matched in a single, white-hot tongue leaping over the forehead of the Irishman made apostle. Apostle to a different creed, for looking the archangel in the face is exactly as terrifying an experience in a split second as it would be for a lifetime.

"Has he told you who he is, Seamus O'Rourke? An altar boy in a village church in the Silver City." A sharp grin accompanies that anguishing presence. The echo of an answer is feminine, flat, and tinged in give-no-fucks intolerance. Via Maze: "And he's Lucifer Morningstar. That Lucifer. So Nadi, do I get to play naughty priest in the confessional booth with you?"

Well, that revelation is enough for the gangsters to have second thoughts. All except for the bravest, who slowly backs away from Bucky and the bar to stand next to Nadiriel. The others slip back out the door, not quite in a panicking run, but they certainly have no desire to linger just yet. Angel on their side or no.

Nadiriel stands silent for a long moment, too proud, too stubborn, or too afraid of what else might happen to admit that he should back down. "Very well," he finally growls, staring daggers at Bucky before he looks back to Lucian. "She'll have to leave eventually. And mock me as you will, Morningstar, but we were not called Watchers for nothing. Best you be wary, though. The longer I have to wait and watch for the girl, the more things I may discover instead."

Nadiriel isn't above his own theatrics. His wings snap out, light flashes around him, and he shoots upwards to the ceiling before going insubstantial enough to disappear through the roof, leaving his last disciple standing in his place. The man tips his hat, then backs toward the door, insolent.

Harper, meanwhile, slides back down to the floor behind the bar, stunned into silence. There are things she needs to process.

Process isn't even the word for it. That sight, however brief, and however much it's not turned towards James, hits him like the shocks he was once given by his old masters. It's a measure of Winter's steel more than his own that he only sinks to the one knee, and no further, inadvertant genuflection…..waiting for the accolade, almost. It only lasts a moment before he's up again, still shivering and looking positively ill. But waiting on Lucian's direction, nonetheless.

Sheltered from the moment that causes Bucky to take a knee, Rosemarie has time to acknowledge the sudden odd deference from the man and to glance up at the man — angel?! — disappearing through Lux's ceiling and then…

It sounds quiet? Wincing again, she reaches up and delicately leverages herself to peek overtop the bar. Lucian, sly thing. He's managed to talk down a confrontation again. With a heavy sigh, the librarian slumps against the surface opposite of Harper and closes her eyes. Already, her pulse is slowing and the Shi'ar war-blood grudgingly accepts that there will be no beat-down. Not tonight.

"S-S-S-Safe," she manages to stutter out quietly, opening her eyes to look upon Harper. Already, her irises are fading back to cinnamon brown. Oh yes, she's curious, but…prying is rude.

The gangsters and the angel are gone, and behind them is still an expectant quiet. Clearly, this was just the opening volley in a much larger war. Battle lines have been drawn.

Now if only Harper could figure out what in the hell they're fighting over.

Once the soft sounds of the club begin to fill the space again, she finally dares to slowly stand up from behind the bar. "Thanks," she says quietly to Rosemarie. "But I think it might be a little early to call safe. For me, at least. You okay, Jack?" she calls over to Bucky. As if she's not the one who looks like she's been through a cement mixer recently.

"'m okay," Bucky asserts. He still sounds like he's been gut-punched, even as he brushes nonexistent dust from his suit. And the look in his eyes is decidedly shellshocked. "I guess you're staying here for now," he tells Harper, voice gruff. "Staff'll take care of that." A beat, and he adds, "You want a drink? On me." A look at Rosemarie. "You, too."

Rosemarie pulls her knees in, careful to keep her skirt from rising too high. It still pull up to mid-shin and she hugs about her legs, tucking her chin into the valley created just above her knee.

"Y-Y-Yes p-p-p-p-p —" It's a veritable machine gunning of a consonant. A sigh, a grimace, and she forces out, "Please." Her eyes shift back to Harper. "Wh-wh-wh-who are y-y-you?"

"Yeah. Yeah, a drink sounds good," Harper nods numbly, limping around the bar to pull herself up onto a stool. She props her head up in one hand, dragging a hand through her hair at Rosemarie's question with a short, dry laugh. "I guess that's the question of the day, isn't it?" Glancing over her shoulder, she looks to where Lucian stood just a few moments ago. "Still waiting for the answer on that one myself."

He can deal with the basic drinks….even if it's with all the cheerful patter of a very rusty robot. Buck's in deep shock, still shaking hard enough his teeth are almost chattering. "What're you having?" he asks them, not looking up from the hands he's planted on the bartop.

The librarian isn't shaking, more acutely uncomfortable in her own skin, but she's cognizant enough to recognize the reaction in the one she's come to know as barkeep and bouncer here at Lux.

"R-R-R-Rum and fruit-t-t j-j-juice, p-please," she replies to Bucky. Much easier this time, that word. To Harper, she asks, "Y-You d-d-don't have a n-n-n-name?"

"Bourbon, straight. As big a glass as possible," Harper answers Bucky first, blinking a few times at Rosemarie. "I do. I just." She rubs a hand at her brow, wincing when it moves across a scab and her fingers come back bloodied. "I usually go by Lux here, but that also tends to sound pretty fucking stupid when you're in a club that's called Lux, even if you were using it before you knew about the damned place."

He's efficient….but also terribly careful, lest he either spill the drink or crack the glassware. Rosemarie first, and then Harper, before he breaks his own habit and makes himself a rum and coke. Which Buck swigs with unseemly haste, even as he listens to the two. HE doesn't volunteer the pseudonym Harper's given him before.

The librarian accepts the glass from the gun-wielding barkeep and sips at it. In a similar vein to Harper, she too requires a blood sugar boost every now and then — alcohol always helps, in a way. Thank goodness for white rum.

"It's a c-c-coincid-dence," Rosemarie opines quietly. "If w-w-we're using pseud-d-donyms, I'm Piper. Y-Y-You know L-Lucian?" Bucky is given a lingering glance for his lack of input into the conversation.

Harper takes a hefty swallow of her drink once it's set down, nodding gratefully to Bucky. "I only met him once," she shakes her head to Rosemarie. "And barely then. But I know this place is- I mean, I know this is a place people are supposed to leave their beefs at the door, you know? And they weren't letting up, and if I kept trying to get to the safe houses I've got left, I'd run out and be on the street. So I came here, thinking I could shake them. But apparently that wasn't going to happen."

"Jack," says the Soldier, faintly. It's a strange tone to hear from him. "I knew…." he trails off, tries again, after another slug of rum and soda. "HE was different. I'd no idea how." Buck gazes down into the glass, shakes hishead. He's working for the Devil. Literally.

Jack. The librarian wonders to herself if this too is a pseudonym or if the drink-slamming man does have a birth certificate that sports the name. Regardless, he gets a vaguely sympathetic furrowing of brows from Rosemarie.

"Lucian is…d-d-different." Oh yes, they agree there. "Th-This p-p-place should b-b-be safe. I d-d-don't know if y-you c-c-could st-tay here, b-but…there's n-no harm in-n asking?" Half of her drink is gone and on an empty stomach too. Maybe she'll even stop stuttering soon for the relaxation of tropical liquor in her veins.

"I just…need a few hours," Harper murmurs to Rosemarie, slouching in her stool as the stress of the fight, of the flight, of it all, is compounded by the bourbon. "Time enough to gather my wits, time enough to plan, and then I'll be on my way. I can't hide here forever, and they can't watch it here forever."

"I think," James notes, voice a little sharp, "It said it could do exactly that. Talk to the boss, before you make any plans. He'll have an idea about what you should do. And I bet you can stay."

"L-Like J-J-J-Jack says. T-Talk to L-Lucian. If y-you can't st-t-t-tay here, he p-p-probably knows p-people." A significant glance is aimed at Bucky for a passing second. It's all about the Devil they know. Maybe now it's about whom the Devil knows.

Rosemarie finishes her drink and then stretches out her empty glass towards the barkeep. "C-Could I h-have another?" She remains sitting there on the floor, leaning against the back cupboards of the area behind the bar.

Harper takes another drink, giving Bucky a narrow-eyed look. "Don't go getting protective just because you've seen me bleed," she grumbles. "I'll be fine." She lifts her glass, draining the full thing in a few long swallows, before she thumps it back onto the bar. "I'm going to go to the ladies room, get myself cleaned up before I figure out what's next," she announces as she slides gingerly from her stool. "If you don't see me in thirty minutes, I fell asleep in there."

"Don't fall in and drown," Bucky admonishes, in dulcet tones. He gives Harper big doe eyes. It could happen! To Rose, "Sure you can, doll. I'll keep 'em coming until you say when." …..did he just flirt with her? OR is it the rum? He's certainly pink at the cheeks.

"Oh." If Bucky's attempting to flirt, it's certainly noticed on some level by the brunette librarian and the blush beneath her freckles isn't just from the liquor. She's not a light-weight, not by any means, but on an empty stomach, these drinks will add up quickly. All the better…at least for her human psyche. The Shi'ar warbird is sleeping with its head beneath its metaphorical wing in her mind. "Th-Thank y-y-you," she adds, ducking her head for a moment.

Harper's movements are watched and Rosemarie does pipe up again. "D-D-Do y-y-you n-need me to c-come with y-you?" she asks of the younger woman.

Harper doesn't even look back as she waves a hand at both of them, limping her way to the ladies room. Probably a safe bet she's going to collapse on one of the lounges in there. Probably for the best.

"I'll send someone after her in a bit," Buck says, softly. "Don't worry about it," Then he's looking back at her, more critically. "What about you? I can call a cab for you, when you're ready to go home."

Rosemarie watches the young woman go and chews on the scar on her lips once. She will heart, it seems, even as the whole reason for the stand-off by otherwordly gladiators in a colliseum carved from shadows and sin. The quiet words bring her back to Bucky and she smiles faintly at him, still sporting that blush.

"A c-c-c-cab w-would b-be great eventually," she agrees, reaching up to itch behind her ear. The crests have vanished entirely now and she's back to normalcy…or what counts as such. "You w-were very b-b-brave." It seems like an innane side-thought, but it must be said of the man's actions.

His lips part in surprise. "I….don't think so. I think that was mostly me being too stupid to be afraid." Then Buck grins that crooked grin. "Thanks, though."

"Stupid?" Rosemarie laughs and shakes her head. "I d-did nothing b-brave. Y-You st-t-t-tood up to them all." She lets one leg slide out before her, so that her arms wrap about only a single knee. "I w-w-wonder who she is. P-Probably s-someone import-t-tant, with how they w-wanted her."

Bucky gets that little smile again, hesitant in a way. "Y-Y-Your n-name p-probably isn't Jack, is it?" Those doe eyes, big and brown, rest upon him with little guile.

"I've killed a few giants in my time, lady," he says, lifting his almost empty glass in salute. "But….I'm sure you'll earn my real name, soon enough. I'm crap at concealing it. Or you'll recognize me. I usedta be famous."

"F-Famous?" Rosemarie echoes, clearly interested by expression and tone. Carefully, she leverages herself up to her feet using the bartop's pristine surface (now smudged with fingerprints, SHAME) and steps around to sit upon a barstool. "I'd l-l-love another drink and then you c-can t-t-tell me about these g-g-giants." There's that blush again, beneath the freckles, because this is far braver than normal in her book, the playful banter. Maybe one more drink will stop that stutter for good too!

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