Title: Prodigals #11: Cafe on St. Martin
Characters: movie-verse Remy and Scott
Rating: G (I know! Wow!! What a change!)
Summary: A typical morning at a typical cafe in a typical urban city.
Notes and Disclaimers: No one here belongs to me; they belong to Marvel
Entertainment, Fox, and Brian Singer & Co. Am not making money, blah, blah,
for entertainment, woof, woof. This is getting way too long. I should end it
CAFE ON ST. MARTIN
It's a good day by most standards. The fog is still clinging lover-like to
the ground but the chill is just enough to take the edge f the brightness of
the sun. The flowers decorating the streets are technicolour bright. Someone
must come here every morning at dawn to paint them; flowers just don't grow
that colour naturally. Or maybe this is just a vivid dream � la Dorothy.
Remy lifts two fingers. The server comes immediately with another one of
those sugar laden pastries and a caf� au lait. The manager had looks so
pleased and shocked by the order that it became the daily special. And, Remy
suspects, the house special soon. As was only right. It's about time
everyone recognized the true way to have coffee.
Someone else enters the caf�, a young professional type with his hair cut
too short and his shoes so shiny you could use it to direct traffic. He
ordered a latte in a curt manner, unfolded his glasses, and took the top
paper from the stack to his right. He'd done the exact same thing before,
probably for months now The man behind the counter reaches for a cup before
the last word left the yuppy's mouth.
The bell above the door rings again. Two men this time, one blond in casual
dressy, the other dark in flashy red. They walk close together, almost
touching, their fingers brushing as though by accident. Tension stiffens
thier shoulders. The younger one comes to the counter first, orders a
flavoured coffee, then does a stilted conversational dance with his partner
about the second order. Partner was too strong a word. These two weren't
comfortable enough to be true partners, shifty with each other or their
sexuality, Remy wasn't sure.
They sit in the middle of the caf�, just in view of the window but apart
from Remy and the yuppy who is now folding his newspaper into neat eighths.
From where he's sitting, Remy can see the yuppy's long lashed eyes swiftly
scanning each line of type. He sips his latte with equal efficiency. The
headline on the paper has a picture of two curators standing in front of a
long lost Raphael.
The door chimes. A young woman in a college uniform-- jeans, t-shirt,
backpack-- opens it for an older woman in a jogging suit who pushes a buggy
in. The baby inside coos at the delicious noise then reaches for his rattle
in an attempt to repeat it. He cries when it fails while his mother orders a
large chai tea and two slices of banana bread.
The loading bar on Remy's laptop is full. It disappears with a little note.
He shuts the lid and puts it in his bag, careful not to squash the rest of
the contents. The young guy in red is trying to make the baby laugh. He's
making faces, sticking his tongue out, crossing his eyes. His
boyfriend/partner/possibility looks uncomfortable as does the college girl.
She takes her coffee to go and heads straight for the bus stop across the
street. The mother and child soon follow.
Remy lifts his cup to his lips. The movement is fluid, deliberate,
expedient. His eyes scan from the couple to the street to the yuppy who'd
put down the headline section in favour of the sports page.
The door rings again. Another woman. She's ordering in: cappuccino and a
cheese scone. Remy traces her curves with his eyes, loving how the emerald
of her blouse sets off her skin. It's the same shade as Remy's caf� au lait.
Her body is just as rich. He'd lived too long on the streets to gain an
appreciation for thinness.
The woman turns her head, a thin lock of hair falling from her soft up-do.
She smiles tentatively at the quiet young man in the corner. Remy smiles
back, maintaining eye-contact just long enough to communicate the compliment
but not so long that she feels compelled to sit at his table. She takes the
one kitty-corner instead, facing slightly away just in case the handsome man
changes his mind. She crosses her silk-clad legs to push her luck a bit
The sun is well and truly up now, brushing away the mist with pale yellow
fingers and pushing more customers in. Five people in a row order dark
roasts to go, not bothering to look around as they pay, mix sugar and cream,
and clothe their cups in a cap and jacket. One orders tea, changes it to an
espresso then changes it back to tea.
Remy has a third cup. He's pushing his daily intake but today is worth
celebrating. The yuppy slings back the dregs of his coffee. The business
section, now folded into sixteenths, is slipped surreptitiously into his
briefcase. Remy watches the pinch with a weighing expression. Pretty smooth.
Obviously, not an amateur but no expert either.
The yuppy exits just as a young brunette in a striped shirt comes in. They
dance around each other, not making eye contact. Finally, the girl stops and
steps aside. The yuppy brushes by her with a brusque thanks. She rolls her
eyes, picking up the remains of the paper he abandonned.
The blond in J Crew stands up as well. He pauses before stepping away from
the table, obviously expecting his partner to follow. The younger man in red
slouches in his seat, apparently entranced by the patterns he's making out
of the spilled sugar. The crystals are diamonds on the red-stained table.
The blond jerkily leans forward as though to give a parting kiss but instead
leaves without even a touch. He bumps into the girl in the striped shirt and
mumbles an apology for the spilled drink. She waves it away. He goes out the
door, restrained, frantic.
The girl looks around. Her gaze alights on the woman in emerald who is still
slowly, hopefully finishing her scone. It flies over Remy and lands on the
red-clad sugar artist.
"Can I sit here?" Remy hears her say.
The brunet looks surprised. The caf� is anything but full. But he shrugs.
She smiles at him and takes the seat the blond abandonned
The woman in emerald can't afford to stay any longer. She picks up her bags,
tossing change on the table. Only when she gets outside does she peek at
Remy to see if he's watching. He isn't. She walks on, shoulders slightly
Remy's cell-phone buzzes in his jacket pocket. He peers at the number and
dismisses it. The oncoming drama at Table 7 is more interesting than a
confirmation of delivery.
"You know," the girls says around her mouthful of joe, "how some people take
forever to grow into their skin? Like my cousin. She's a harmony baby like
me, but it's always bothered her. Like she thinks she's defective in both
cultures because she isn't one or the other."
The guy in red looks embarrassed and irritated because of it. He doesn't
respond. Remy's phone buzzes again.
"And I've never been able to figure it out." The girl in the striped shirt
take another generous sip. "Still don't. I need ten deep breaths sometimes
just to keep talking to her."
Her seatmate nods out of politeness, a vacant smile stretched over his thin
"I guess I figured harmony babies would be a non-problem compared to muties,
and AIDS, and war, y'know?"
"Do you always spread family secrets to complete strangers?" the guy asks
"As often as possible," she replies, taking the rebuke as anything but.
Remy's phone vibrates like an ant on speed. With a sigh, he flips it on.
"It's me." Scott's voice is as warm as his teacher facade is cool. "Just
checking to make sure you didn't give me a bum number."
"You're not worth the effort."
"Yeah, well." There's tapping and shuffling in the background. He's probably
marking tests or making lesson plans. "This has been a weird morning."
Remy tries to concentrate on Table 7. "How's that?"
"Well, first there's that lost Raphael being returned and no one taking the
credit even though the museum said they compensated the finder."
"Good for them." He can only faintly hear the other conversation. The girl
has the guy's hands in hers.
Scott's voice is insistent in Remy's other ear. "And then this morning, I
went to check on the funds and I find it several zeros higher than last
"You knock over a back?"
"Naw, I figured someone played Robin Hood."
"Yeah. Lucky us." There's something inscrutable in Scott's voice. Something
that Remy hasn't heard pointed towards him before. It might almost seem like
pride. "So, yeah, I just wanted to check in. Lunch is over in a few minutes,
so I'll have to cut this short."
"Mais sho." Remy swallows the last cold mouthful of the caf� au lait.
"I'll call you again later."
The boy in Table 7 is standing, looking less piqued than before. Remy
mentally curses Scott's timing. He's missed the best part of the drama; he
might as well leave.
He doesn't look at either customer when he leaves, smiling at the man behind
the counter and telling him to keep the change. A mischievous breeze sneaks
into the caf� as he opens the door, stealing the headline page away.
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