1964-12-20 - Magic Show
Summary: Zatanna arrives on New Years day to bring magic to the children of Mutant Town, and Conner comes to eat while Yuliya volunteers in the kitchen again.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
yuliya conner zatanna 


Yuliya is down in mutant town again, once again helping with the cooking in the Community Center, once again helping out Ethel. While she mightn't be a mutant herself, she might be down there to blend in and just stay off the radar again. She might have just finished work, as she's still dressed in her corporate attire, well except her blazer, which has the logo for a large multi-national insurance company on the breast. At the moment she's currently near the kitchen, helping dish out food to people who want it.

Charity work. It's usually the chance for a photo op, or some other way to get your face in the paper, but for Zatanna Zatara, it's just been a way to help those that cannot help themselves. She came to the Community Center to help serve food and now that has been done with the evening dinner rush, she's been entertaining a small group of less fortunate children with a few simple tricks.

"Now, what you may see here is a simple armoire, or what a wardrobe. But what I know is in here are some secrets." she winks towards one of the children, who's jacket is old and ratty, and moves towards her. "May I see your jacket?" she asks the young girl. "I promise I'll give it right back!" Her smile holds a warm promise before the girl shyly removes her jacket, exposing arms that are covered in fine scales, as she blushes.

"There's nothing to be shy about. Your scales are downright irradescent." A little wave of her fingers, and a trick of the light and the scales shine like a rainbow for a moment, causing the girl's face to light up. Zatanna rises, shaking out the jacket. Taking it to the armorie, it seems to be empty, as she takes out a hangar, and makes a move to ensure that the jacket is set on the hanger, and turns it about just to make sure the kids can see that the jacket being placed in the cabinet and she closes it.

Waving her hand for a moment, she grins out at the crowd. "Now say the magic words!" And underneath the chorus of 'Abra-Kadabras!', Zee quietly speaks. "Taoc lufroloc dna deriaper wen a tekcaj siht ekam."

Opening the cabinet, she pulls out the new coat and holds it up, taking it off the hangar and smiles brightly, showing a bright set of teeth as she moves to wrap the coat around the young girl and lifts a hand. "Let's have some applause for my assistant!" There's clapping and cheering and other kids wanting Zee to change their clothes too - something that Zatanna is happy to use the cabinet for.

Mutant Town is not precisely Conner King's usual stomping grounds, and while he appreciates the necessity for charity work, he rarely has the time to participate — for that matter, he's frequently the one in need. He eats a lot, and his dockworker's salary isn't always sufficient to cover it. As a result, he's come to the Mutant Town community center not to assist in the cooking and whatnot, but to see if there's food to be spared. He's not going to dive in and eat right off the bat; he's not a mutant, though he feels he's probably close enough, but he's not starving either, and some of these people probably are.

So he has been hanging at the edges of the crowd, coming to the conclusion, before long, that he'll just have to shell out some money for an extra loaf of bread when he gets home. He does, when he has a chance in the press of the crowd, repair a tear in a man's coat by telekinesis, fix the separating sole of a woman's old shoes, but before long he's distracted — because a woman is doing magic. And while Conner is not exactly one to be distracted by a silly magic act, it's hard not to be distracted by the woman.

Yuliya continues to go about her work, helping to dish out food. She most likely doesn't seem to notice the magic show at first, as she considers the meals that she's helping to dish out. She kind of stares at the mash potatoes for a moment, before finally noticing the magician doing tricks in the community centre. She arches a brow as she watches on for a few moments with her head a little to the side. Not really being able to hear that well, she goes back to dishing out food to those waiting in line.

When she notices Conner standing there, she coughs softly for a moment, before calling out, "Next. Do not be afraid, is not gruel." She offers a faint smile as she splits her attention between the entertainer and the labourer.

Especially when said woman is doing the same thing that Conner is doing - just on a more showy fashion. But it's meant to entertain. Sure she could just sit in a chair and do this all day long - but honestly, the look on the kids faces as she continues her act does far more to cheer her spirits than anything else. While not dressed in her magician's garb, she is in a pair of form fitting black slacks with a pair of leather boots, a cashmire blue sweater, and her hair pulled back with a matching blue bow as she continues her little act to the delight of the children.

There's a glance towards where Yuliya and Conner are interacting, and the young woman offers a small wave before she works on one more child's coat and the shoes as well. Again, that chorus of 'Abra Kadabras!' and Zee making her own magic beneath it before opening the cabinet and handing out the repaired items. "I think my cabinet's all tuckered out!" she says with a small laugh. "But if you check with my helpers, they have a gift for you!" Small bundles of blankets, a little stuffed toy and a chocolate bar await the children as she tucks some hair behind her ear to come over towards the others.

Conner blinks, surprised to be noticed, and then notes to Yuliya, "I don't think I should. There are people who need the food a lot more than me, ma'am." He speaks with a Bronx accent, or at least a facsimile of one. "I'm not afraid of gruel — but I got a couple cans of tuna in my cupboards, and that's probably more than a lot of these folks have." He glances back toward Zatanna, only to realize the woman is coming toward them. "Ah. Good show, miss," he offers.

"Oh, you should be very afraid of gruel. Gruel for breakfast, gruel for lunch, gruel for dinner," Yuliya chimes in a somewhat cheerful tone. "Everything /gruel/." She laughs softly and she shakes her head. "Then only take a little bit of food. There is no harm in taking food. No shame in it doing it either. Is community kitchen, yes? Meals for the hungry and treatment for the ill." She puts down the serving spoon she's hanging onto and glances towards te woman that's moving in her direction.

"Very good show, spaciba. I could not hear much, but the children looked like they were enjoying it," she offers, still in that same upbeat tone, despite her Russian accetion. "I am Yuliya." She then waves towards Conner. "I do not know who he is. Gruel Guy, maybe."

"Miss? Goodness, I didn't realize I was dressing so maturely." Zatanna offers with a warmth in her smile before she glances at the food that's being offered. "I think it would be a bit warmer and better than canned tuna, though." she points out to Conner before Yuliya speaks up about the show. "Thank you both. They had some new clothes to hand out and I just wanted to make sure they got out properly. A little sleight of hand." she offers with a wink.

Offering her hand to Yuliya first, she greets the woman first, "Nice to meet you, Yuliya. I'm Zee. Nice to meet you. But I don't think he's Gruel Guy. I mean, unless he made this, then I suppose he could be." she winks.

"Conner," says 'Gruel Guy', looking a little sheepish. "A little food, then," he agrees with a sigh. It's January 1st, and the docks aren't receiving any shipments. So he's not getting paid. A man's gotta eat. "My mama told me to call a young woman you don't know 'miss'. Anyway, I called Yuliya 'ma'am', and I'm not sure that was all that appropriate. Pleasure to meet you both," he adds as he claims a plate, a scoop of potatoes, whatever else there is to be eaten.

"Manners can go a long way," Yuliya comments casually, as she leans against the counter and watches as Conner picks out his food. There's an assortment of food, no doubt donated from different places. "They do not cost anything, but can be worth a lot." She tilts her head to the side and reaches out to take Zee's hand. "It is nice to meet you both. Also, this is not gruel. Trust me, I know gruel, and this is far from it." She laughs softly and then shakes her head, still with the same smile on her lips. "I won't take offence to 'ma'am', as I have been called far worse both here and back where I came from."

"Russia, I assume?" Zee asks, offering Yuliya a smile before releasing her hand. "It means that you have interesting stories to tell." she points out, before her attention turns to Conner. "I do appreciate the respect, but as a New Yorker, I'm sorta used to the opposite." There's an amused twinkle in her eyes, before she steps aside so that the line may continue. "I just hope that the people here find a little warmth and company today - and that things will get better for them."

Conner pauses in shoveling potatoes into his mouth to swallow, dab his lips with a napkin, and then cast a smile at Zatanna. "Far as I'm concerned, Zee, just 'cause everybody most of the city is rude, that doesn't mean I should be." He has moved out of line at this point himself, engaged in the conversation after all, and with plenty of food on his plate. If there are leftovers he may beg some later — but this will do for now.

"Yes, I was able to flee the Soviet Union, and went to France before coming here," Yuliya replies to Zee. She shakes her head, and then sighs. "I would not say my stories are all that interesting." She goes silent for a few moments and then takes a deep breath. She then turns when she's tapped on the shoulder by one of the other volunteers who are helping out, and offers a nod when she finds out she's done her time. She speaks with them softly, before moving to get her blazer and making her way out from the kitchen area.

"Then that puts you in a very small minority of gentlemen, Conner." Zee responds with a smile before she gestures to a table. "Should we all grab a place to sit and talk?" she asks amicably. "You're welcome to join us, Yuliya." comes the offer to the Soviet defector. "Wow, you escaped from there? That is an interesting story in itself! If you want to tell it."

This is one of those times when Conner really sort of wishes he'd kept his mouth shut — because he is in a very distinct minority when it comes to other people. A minority of approximately one. He blushes in response to Zee's comment, stuffs more food into his mouth, nods in agreement when she asks if they'd like to sit, nodding and waving his fork toward an empty table.

See, he doesn't talk with his mouth full, either.

Yuliya pulls her blazer back on, and she moves to join the duo at the table. She takes a seat and glances towards Zee. "I lived, others died," she casually replies with a faint shrug. "I was lucky." She raises a hand up to rub at her eye for a moment. "It is not really a story I am ready to tell. Some day in the future, maybe I will," she replies. "Thank you. It's actually nice to just sit down and talk. Did both of you have a good western Christmas?"

"It was an interesting Christmas. And a good start to the New Year." Zee offers casually as she glances over at buff and silent and casually steers the conversation. "Well, I'm sure when the right time comes, you'll speak up." she says with a light shrug of one shoulder. "Do you volunteer here often, Yuliya? You and Conner will probably see each other more if you did?"

"I, uh… didn't really do anything for Christmas," Conner admits. He sat in his apartment, listened to the radio. He took a walk to watch people skating at Rockefeller Center. He flew around for a bit after the sun went down. He didn't have anywhere to go, really. But it was a day off, and there's nothing wrong with that. "I don't come by often. I just lost a couple days of work for the holidays — less cash means less food, you know?"

"I came to work here on Christmas day," Yuliya admits to Zee. "I heard rumours they needed workers, so I came and worked. It is giving me a chance to learn American cooking, too. And one day, when I am ready, I will speak up about what I have been through." She offers another smile before she glances towards Conner again. "I have a small side business," she comments. "Every month or so, I sometimes need help moving a shipment that comes in. It all depends on the size to if I need anyone. If you give me your number, I can keep you in mind."

"Ah." Zatanna offers as the two make their explanations. She spent a quiet evening in her manor home, speaking incantations and searching for her father, but noone needs to know that. There's a delighted smile as Yuliya makes an offer to Conner. "There you go. See, fortune is already smiling on you for the New Year, just from a chance encounter."

Conner pauses between bites of whatever he's digging through — all food is good if there's a lot of it. Baked beans, he thinks, at the moment. "I'm on a party line," he says. "But I'll be happy to help you out, Yuliya. Being strong's the main thing I've got going for me." This is said with something of a wry smile. He may dress like James Dean, but he's clearly a lot more humble than his apparent idol. He flashes a somewhat bashful smile at Zatanna. "My good fortune to come out on New Years, I guess. It's supposed to determine your luck for the year, isn't it? I can use it."

Yuliya offers a nod to Conner when he explains about the partyline. She mightn't be certain what it means, but she does not anyway, and even offers a smile. "It might be useful to have someone strong to move the boxes. I tend to unload and reload, which takes a lot of time. It is not America if you cannot chase the Capitalist dream." She then smiles towards Zatanna at the look. "It is only helping out fellow member of the working class. I try where I can."

"You were helping out your fellow man. That's a bit more important." Zatanna offers with a smile before she looks between the two. "I should see about getting home before it gets too late. And yes, it's good to come out on New Years." she says to Conner. "You can't find fortune if you don't go persuing it - and that means getting out. As for you, Yuliya - well, I hope that you have a very successful 1965." she offers to the pair. Rising from the table, she grabs her scarf and jacket to pull on. "As for myself, I hope to have an adventurous year."

"I'm just hoping to be able to pay my bills," Conner puts in, smirking faintly. "It was nice to meet both of you. And just leave a message with whoever picks up if I'm not around, Yuliya — they'll slip it under my door." He pauses. "Unless it's Mr. Messenbaum. That guy just doesn't like me for some reason. Very nice to meet you, Zee. Have a good night."

Yuliya offers another faint smile to Zatanna and also a little wave. "It was nice to meet you, Zee," she offers to the woman that's leaving. "Do not get too cold out there, and have some brandh." She offers a little nod at her bit of advice and she glances towards Conner again. "If I do get him, then I will tell him it very important insurance matters. It will at least get some rumours going." She titters softly. "But do not worry about him. I bet he is a grumpy old man with a name like that."

"Maybe he thinks you're too polite for a New Yorker." Zatanna gives Conner a wink and then a wave to the table before she heads to the door and out onto the street beyond. It won't take her too long to get back, after all, once she's around the corner, she murmurs, "Emoh." And a portal opens for her into Shadowcrest for her to step through.

"He's definitely a grumpy old man," Conner agrees as he finishes the food on his plate. "Thank you very much, Yuliya — best meal I've had in awhile, I assure you." He rises from his seat and turns his head left and right to remove any stiffness, then pulls a pencil from his pocket and scratches on a piece of paper. "My number," he says. "If you need help, just let me know — no payment necessary."

Yuliya purses her lips as she takes the number. "I will keep it in mind, though I believe in fair pay for fair work," she comments as she slowly stands up and straightens out her suit. She takes a moment to fish a business card out of her pocket, noting her as an insurance assessor. "Easiest number to reach me on. If I am not in the office and doing field work, just leave a message," she offers with a friendly smile. "Oh, I was only helping today. I will let the cook know you enjoyed the meal."

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