1965-01-08 - Elmo, Speak Food at Them!
Summary: JP calls up Elmo as a translator, and the trip get around to discussing Mutants and complicated families
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
lindon elmo jp 

JP managed to wind up on the Lower East Side (yet again) and this time with more bruises to add to the ones he ran into Elmo with the last time. That said there was a call to ring him up not to say, 'Hey I'm in your neck of a the woods but to use the payphone to ask him to translate the menu on the deli sign because he didn't know what half of it meant.' Frommers Fun fact: JP Bonaventure does not come from an area where the know how to spell 'challa' or even what it is. The schmear threw him for a loop too. In the end he waited around outside for the cavalry to show up and have a cig like 20 miles of lurking, bad road.

Elmo agrees to come bail JP out of this terrible situation and he's not laughing at you, JP, what makes you say that, other than the fact that he's totally laughing at you. He brings Lindon, since he promised they'd do something fun that had nothing to do with mystical scariness. "You picked the right place to wash up," he says cheerfully to JP as he and Lindon walk up to him.

Lindon follows a pace behind Elmo, a little on the shy side and tall enough to be seen over the diminutive fellow. He waves a little and says, "Hi, I'm Lindon." He smiles a bit, trying on the friendly greeting for size. Some folks just take a little getting-to-know.

JP absolutely did not pass as the 'friendly' sort and quite likly (and perhaps justly) was shooed out of more than one business who just didn't want 'trouble'. Funny enough that's usually how JP elected who was the winning recipient of 'said trouble'. Lindon got a squint at but the Mutant didn't address him directly yet, but asked Elmo in that Cajun drawl, "Mmhmm, the shirt cool?" In short 'am I gonna have a problem with this guy?' Not that he wasn't looking like he fought an oncoming bus, but it wasn't slowing his stride. He had to agree with Elmo though giving the deli a cautious squint. "Smell good, but I don' like the way tha' guy's lookina t me and I can't read the damn menu or know what the hell any of that is. I tell him I wanna sandwich. He's like what kind? Like I make the food? Mon Dieu." He shook his head and exhaled flicking the stub out into the street in the tiny pinwheel of light, eyes returning to Lindon.

Elmo tips his head towards Lindon, glancing up at him with a brief flash of a brilliant, adoring smile. "This is Lindon, my, uh, friend. Don't let him scare you, JP, he's a real mean one. Lindon, that's JP, I met 'im at the community center party I went to with Kai. He dunno how to Jewish food, we're gonna help. JP, there's like fifty sandwiches, whaddaya want?"

Lindon blinks guilelessly. Yeah, he's a real caution. All that height and he wastes it by being conspicuously thin and more than a little withdrawn. "Oh, hi, JP. It's nice to meet you." He pauses, then steps forward to offer his hand to shake. There's something very deliberate about the motion, like he's learned it from a pamphlet rather than doing it intrinsically. "I recommend the Reuben if you like corned beef."

JP was a guarded delinquent, but if Elmo said he was cool he was apt to believe him. A hand roughened by fights, metal, and a life of hard labour and many scrape and bruises shook Lindon's hand. He looked between them and then to the Deli and shrugged with a creak of leather of his jacket. "Well… I dunno. We don' have anythin like this so let's find out."

"C'mon," Elmo says, patting JP's shoulder—lightly, because bruises, and also because touching. "I'll get ya fed." Inside, the deli is as loud and chaotic as a rowdy family, people laughing and arguing in a dozen languages, but primarily Yiddish. Elmo has a rapid discussion in Yiddish with a few people in turn. They regard him with varying degrees of fondness and horror at his long hair, which he doesn't seem to mind. Eventually everybody gets seated in a booth. "I know what Lindon wants," Elmo says, "so I ordered for us. How are ya doin, JP?" It's not an idle question.

Lindon watches Elmo as he does his thing, and the librarian has a somewhat dopey smile on his face. Elmo being Elmo is heartwarming. "What happened?" he says to JP as he keeps an eye on what Elmo's doing in his periphery. "Tell me I should see the other guy." He scoots over to make room upon Elmo's return, and he smiles at him. Super dope.

JP hung to the back watching. These were not his eople but apparently he rang up the right number for atour guide. There were upnods in gesture to him and he didn't knnow what a meshugener was but apparently JP decided it might mean 'employed'. His brow furrowed a bit trying to get an idea of who people were in this equasion and stayed quiet while Elmo smoothed it all out following he and Lindon to a seat. The mechanic slouched in his seat and murmured, "Just a coke's fine." A shrug followed. At Lindon's question there was a conspiratorial growing grin. He looked to Elmo and laughed easily shaking his head tellin Lindon, "Yeah. Couple of em. My week started by beating an obnoxious lil man with an obnoxious lil sign an' then earlier this mornin I had a throw down wit' mah pal Sammy." He shrugged, "We cool, tho."

The sodas here don't come in bottles, but are mixed to order and the seltzer comes from a spray gun, then the whole operation is topped with cherries or whatever might be appropriate. It's a bit old-fashioned but the fact that soda tastes better this way can't be denied.

Elmo grins wickedly at JP. "Why don'tcha slow down, tateleh? All that excitement, bad for your heart. Take up knitting." He gets as close as he dares to Lindon, which isn't that close.

Not that close, but Lindon all but thrums with awareness of Elmo's proximity, and he smiles despite himself. Briefly. Then he regards JP with widened eyes. "You took on a couple of them? Goodness, what did the sign say?" He looks to Elmo. Does Elmo know this happened?

JP let a small impish grin grow and said with a terse smile, "I dunno it was misspelled as 'Mutants need not apply'." There was a sharpness to the fellow but when teh soda pop was set down there was a murmured, earnest, "Thanks." Man those knuckles needed a scrubbing and also a Hello Kitty bandiad or two. "What? How you know I can't knit? Had a lotta time off. I cook, how you know I dunno how?"

From the look Lindon gets in return from Elmo, not only does Elmo know about it, he probably participated in it. Maybe JP's a real bad influence. "Yeah, all right," he says, giving in to the teasing, "how should I know? You cook, maybe you knit, maybe you garden."

Food arrives: the desired more or less "normal" sandwich for JP, a Reuben for Lindon, and for Elmo a soup bowl with a white mystery sphere in it the size of a softball.

Lindon says, "Oh, no. What a jerk. It's a good thing you taught him a lesson." He looks between the two of them, and Elmo gets careful examination for signs of being injured. Satisfied that Elmo's all right, he relaxes, then he tucks into his Reuben. The mystery sphere is given a sidelong glance and says, "Ooh, that's a big one. lucky."

JP shrugged and mutteres another thanks when the food arrived. Mama raised her boys with manners even if it sometimes came with delivering someone the beating of a lifetime. A shrug followed and he offered, "You don' fight f'what's yours e'ery time they's jes gon' keep takin it, mon ami." He chewed his sammich and paused offering Elmo a look of surprise and a slow, but approving nod as he was deciding what he thought of it.

Elmo seems perfectly hale, even if he can't be persuaded to eat more. When Lindon says something about 'that's a big one' he turns red, covers his eyes with one hand and sighs, long-suffering. "Yeah," he says after a moment of concentrating on not laughing. "They make 'em big, here." Then he has to silently fight off giggling for a few more minutes.

Lindon's brow lifts as he looks at Elmo, and then his cheeks turn red, and he looks away with a pointed clearing of his throat. He swallows, then says, "Er, yes. That's… that's good." He fixes his attention on JP. "I agree with what you're saying," he tells him. "Once they realize they can take from you, they will keep taking."

JP ate his damn sandwich. Man, something about hommade sandwiches made with fresh food spoke to his soul. Finally he went back to Elmo, "We got like, eight kids in our family. Someone's gon' cook somethin' an' ma soeur is honestly terrible." The cut on the bridge of his nose being scrunched up didn't pain him half as much for the reason for the scrunching. "Nex thing I gotta do tho is get halfway tacross town and go talk to some Eye-talians in Brooklyn about m'damn car." A shrug later he worked on half number two like he might have to defend his food if he didn't eat it efficiently enough.

"Eight kids, oy," Elmo says. "No wonder you wanna feed everybody." He's carving off neat divots from the matzoh ball. "Whaddabout your car?"

Lindon shakes his head. Eight kids. "Catholic?" he ventures with what might be an attempt at humor. He hastily adds, "I'm Catholic, I'm not trying to be, you know, insensitive." There's sudden worry there. Was he mean just then? Oh god!

JP cracked a wryyyyyy grin to Lindon, "How can ya tell? Trus' me, all my people are. They sound like me? Good bet." He winked to Lindon. HE KNEW. To Elmo there was a dimpled lopsided grin, "Them's my ma's 8 kids. I oonly have the one and she' parfait, just like her papa." Yes he would absolutely pat himself on the back, never you mind he was a beautiful trainwreck of aggression and errors.

"Aww," Elmo says. "I didn't know you had a kid. You look too young." This from a guy who's frequently the youngest adult in the room. "She here in New York?"

Lindon smiles, lowers his gaze, and nods a little. "That's… that's neat." He chews his lower lip, and he nods to himself. Yes, children are neat. "What's her name?" he asks. To Elmo, he says, "You can father children fairly young." Psht, like he knows. Then again, he is a walking encyclopedia.

JP was a lot of things, foremost he was proud of that lil girl even more than whooping the ass of some haters or surviving Sam in a bar brawl. He chewed on his straw idly a bit and shook his head. "No. She ain't." And that was the sore point. there was a hint of a grin that came back as Lindon explained to Elmo you can have kids when you're young which amused him on boththe front that somehow Elmo wouldn't know that, and also when else would you have them?! He answered though. "Her name is Amalie Marguarete. She is five year' old and smart as hell." There was a pause and JP commented to Elmo, "I'm 24, I mean she was born when I was 19. I ain't old, but I ain' that young no more. Old enough to make, hmmmm well informed terrible life chocies, right?"

Elmo gives Lindon a look of fond exasperation. "I know that, ya goof." Jeez, Lindon! Such a nerd. He says to JP, "I'm 19 right now, I ain't done anything that could make a kid. But hey, you got a daughter, that's pretty great. Can't be all terrible, right?" He's just trying to help.

Lindon smiles at Elmo, taking the exasperation in stride. Maybe once he gets to know someone he's more easygoing around them. "I've done stuff that could make a kid," Lindon says, "but it was a long time ago." How long he doesn't mention. He's… older than Elmo. By a bit. JP too. "Amalie Marguarete is a pretty name," he says.

JP chewed on the inside of his cheek and shook his head sitting upright more in the book pulling ht e sleeves on his leather jacket back down. "Well Her mama's family won' lemme see her cause, ya know, reasons." Not happy reasons. "Won' tell her nothin' either." Yeaaah not happy about that one. He looked to Lindon and asked with an arched eyebrow, "You sure yous' haven' lil Lindon somewhere?"

Elmo winces sympathetically. "Sorry, buddy. Same reason those schmucks wouldn't hire ya?"

Lindon says, "Oh gosh, no. I don't think so." Then he glances at his watch. "Oh, damn. I have to get back to work." He polishes off his Reuben quickly, then gets to his feet, starts to give Elmo a kiss, stops himself, and tells him, "I'll call you around five." Then to JP, "It was nice to meet you."

JP winked to Elmo pulling the straw out of his glass and pointed it at him. "Tha' would be the bigger o'the two reasons. Oui." That said he tilted the glass mack to munch on some of the ice cubes with a crunch. His eyes followed lindon, eyebrow titching up a bit but he went back to chewing his ice and poking in the glass with a straw. "WHen Lindon was out of earshot he mumbled to Elmo what Elmo would get, "They ain't too happy about me doin' time and think I have a 'bad family' cause… the merde on the marquee." He shrugged putting some idle thought into it prmisin, "Someday tho? We fix it."

Elmo tries not to look /too/ horrified when Lindon threatens to kiss him in front of half of the Jewish population of New York. When Lindon is safely on his way, Elmo sighs and closes his eyes for a second. Narrow escape. He glances narrowly at JP. "Yeah. We're gonna fix it. …Where do we start?"

JP blinked and did a double take at Elmo and was, for once, speechless. Slowly he leaned, forearms on the edge of the table to speak very quietly so were God himself listening he'd find it hard to hear, "You know this is a Federal, oui?" Because he knew Elo had a rap sheet and if he was 19 this was no juvie hand slap. He took a deep breath and sat back having a very real moment of all people a Jewish Mutant he trusted to get, "I don' want her hittin 9 and havin' them lock her up in one them hospitals t'fix her." Both hands slapped the table though as if the subject were settled. He watched Elmo's eyes very carefully as if reading his brain and making sure he got all that and scryed for trust. They haven't hung out a lot, but he did believe if you fought with a guy you knew who he was. "When tha' time come? You will know. No' soom though. I don' even have m'car back yet."

Elmo spends a little while mulling that over. He carefully shreds a napkin into strips in the meantime. "Ya know," he says quietly. "When my relatives in Berlin saw what was happenin', and they spoke out against it, they went to jail. That was illegal, too. Well. The /lucky/ ones went to jail." His dark eyes flick up to meet JP's. "I always told myself, if that happened here, I was gonna do the same. I'm a mutant /and/ a Jew, now. And…somethin' else that gets guys put in jail a lot." It's clear what he means, by the way he and Lindon interacted. " I can't do no less, can I?"

JP reached over the table and laid a hand on Elmo's fist giving i a squeeze, which turns out is a gesture of business and/or solidarity. He consideredall of the subliminal context in that and agreed, "We are… many thing. I tol' you couple days ago? What we ain't is goin' back." There was a punctuated look. Did he get it? That was hard to tell on all fronts from teh flippant Cajun who gave Elmo's hand a tap in tht cavalier manner he found so damn comfortable to live by. "might have a lead on a side project," His hand gestured flat in a 'nada, "unless yous have thing goin' on."

Elmo permits all this touching, surprisingly. He nods, just a brief gesture. "We ain't goin' back," he repeats, only loud enough to be heard. The din of the place covers up a lot. Then he smiles that long half-smile. "I'm at yer disposal, buddy."

JP winked and gave Elmo a finger gun. "Seeee, I knew I run into you for a reason." That lazy grin returned as he added, "My sister? Younger brother?" He put that down into English to help Elmo out. Sammy? Sammy could suffer through the French. "You'll get t'meet em. they'll be helpin out with things too. you'll like em."

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