PWD #26: Flavor Profiles
PWD #25: Flavor Profiles
Summary: Noble, Suri, and Bennett talk over tea at Checkpoint Charlie's.
Date: 09/12/2012 (OOC Date)
Related Logs: None
Noble Suri Bennett 
Checkpoint Charlie's — Piraeus
The first structure completed on Piraeus was a 'recreation center' that was thinly veiled as such. Checkpoint Charlie's is in every other way a blue collar bar with an unsurprising bent towards the military establishment. Camouflage netting hangs from the ceiling with some kind of dried vine tangled throughout. On the walls are pictures and mementos of times past on the planet they currently reside on. There are a few billiards tables smuggled out to Piraeus specifically for this location, along with card tables and an fully functional line of taps and kegs mounted to, perhaps unsurprisingly, a beat-up but taken-care-of oak bar. The matching stools and wood tables seem to indicate that the construction workers may have disassembled someone else's bar back on the Colonies. The story even goes that the name is taken from a former bar on Aerilon that happened to resemble, very closely, this particular establishment.
Dec 09, 2004

At one end of the bar sits the civvie botanist, Suri Charu. A hardbound book is open on the bar, and she makes notations in it with a short pencil, handwriting small and neat around several line drawings of simple structures and land diagrams. It wouldn't take a genius to recognize a few doodles of grapevines. A chipped porcelain mug rests next to the book, half empty, contents long cooled. Geez, you'd think that woman never works. Always frakking off in the bar. "Could I get a warm pot, please?" She calls to the bartender as he wanders by, drawing an amber colored ale for some anonymous man down at the other end of the bar.

On the second day of a forty-eight hour leave, Simon Noble has returned to the only place he knows to haunt. Too cold outside to sample the wildlife, he quickly makes his way from his temporary room in the living section and in through the main door of Charlie's. Hands rubbing together to try to bring back some of the feeling in his fingertips, he weaves his way down the bar and chooses a spot withing arm's reach of Suri. Pot? Coffee? The marine's eyes brighten as the bartender brings over a filled coffee pot, and Noble tries to intercept it. "Excuse me? Could I get some of that too with a little extra poured into it?" He asks, reaching for his wallet in the right ass-cheek of his pants. He looks to Suri, then down to her book and her less-than-warm mug. "That is if you don't mind me cutting your take?"

Suri tips forward over her notebook, scribbling in a few more notes before she reaches for her very cold mug, and finishes off the dregs of her last brew. It smells a bit spicy, and is dark enough to almost pass for coffee. As someone strolls up all excited about the hot beverage, she glances over. There's a small smile offered to Noble. He drinks tea? "I don't mind at all. A pot's always better shared." There might be some confusion when Noble gets an empty mug and a large ceramic pot, opaque, contents hidden. Unfortunately for the marine, the pot that makes an appearance contains not coffee, but hot water. He might not even make the connection until he's gone to pour. Suri digs a hand into the inside pocket of her coat, and comes up with a long wooden box of hand carved, dark wood. "What flavor profile do you prefer?" May seem an odd set of questions, unless she also has a french press in her jacket pockets. Suri brushes a few dark locks from her cheek, and tucks them behind her ear. A smudge of graphite is transferred from the edge of her hand to the line of her jaw.

"Flavor…profile, wait this isn't?" Noble blinks, suddenly realizing as he's pouring steamed water into the mug. He almost frowns, but instead he looks down into the mug for some sort of guidance he'll never receive. Hrm. "You'll have to forgive me, miss, I'm not with the program on flavor profiles." He pours the water in the mug to an acceptable level, and then looks over to her, fidgeting into a pocket for his pack of cigarettes. His eyes fall to the smudge of graphite, then to her eyes once more. "Define flavor profile. I'm up for the challenge, but you'll have to lead me through the first steps."

Suri considers this for a moment, smile widening as the confusion becomes clear. "Do you like strong flavors? Sweet? Spicy?" She drops her pencil into the gutter of the book. "What makes your mouth happy?" She slides her mug over to sit next to Noble's, and opens the box with her free hand. Several little pyramid-shaped mesh baggies full of loose dry leaves, pods, seeds, and tiny sticks. It kind of looks like potpourri to the untrained, non-tea drinking eye.

"Sounds like a personal profile type question." Noble replies to her, eyes tilting down towards her through the haze of his newly lit cigarette. He scrunches his nose and brushes the side of his hand across the edge of one nostril, wishing away what could only be an itching sensation. He finishes by lightly scratching his fingernail across the spot of his jaw just to the right of his lip. "Maybe a little strong, maybe a little spicy, but you know how these things go, why don't you just show me something that's interesting to you and I'll get thrown to the wolves."

"It won't hurt, I promise," Suri assures Noble, reaching over with a bag selected from the box. The thin mesh is translucent, and inside is a particularly chunky tea. It carries the distinct scents of anise and ginger among others. She suspends that into the cup in front of Noble, securing it with a thin wooden dowel, lest the tea be lost to the depths of the mug. "Give it a couple of minutes to steep. If you like it sweet," she passes over a little opaque white package. "This. And this," another small packet is set by the first. "Cream. Not as good as the real thing, but we all make sacrifices this far out from the Colonies." She reaches over to select her own tea, and repeats the process with her own. "Good decision, trusting the experience of an expert. Efficient. But it's just tea. I couldn't possibly kill you." Unless you're allergic to one of the ingredients.

"Well, clearly you're generous enough to share your…" He holds up the little white packet of what is surely sweetener. "…illicit drug stash with me. Next time my tox tests come back positive I'll get fired and forced to bartend down here rather than overwatch a hangar. Doh, wouldn't that be a trade up?" Brushing his hand through his hair, Noble offers her a cigarette from his pack and gets comfortable on the barstool next to hers. "So you another of the contractors down here? I'm Simon Noble. I'm with the Marines on the Orion up there. They let me off of the leash for a few days."

"I'd have to know you a little better before I shared my illicit drugs." Suri's reply is even and immediate. There's not even a hint of teasing. "There are things that pass out of your system quickly enough." She glances over, giving her mug a half-turn on the bartop as she leans against the ledge in to get comfortable. "Suri Charu. I'm with CIDSR." She finally lets the smile emerge. "Marines do wind up tight if they're not exercised thoroughly. It's good to meet you." She leans in a little to confide, "Armed friends are the best friends to have." She reaches over to tap the side of his mug with a fingernail. "Another 60 seconds."

"Right, right. Fifty eight and counting." Simon replies, reaching out to his mug grab it from above like a spider would. The ceramics let out a soft screech as the mug is slid closer to the man. Leaning in, he breathes in the aroma and stares down into the water to see what the tea is doing. It's becoming tea-like, for sure, which isn't to say much. When making tea there are no explosions, it's just time that passes. "Nice to meet you back, Suri." Simon adds, cracking a quaint little grin and a sideways look to her. "You share you drugs, I share my guns, next thing you know we're running around hallways fighting space aliens, laughing our ass off." He gives his head a little shake. "Studying something? I met a girl here the other night, she's a geologist with CIDSR, I believe."

Tea isn't as sexy as det cord, that's for sure. But it gets the job done in its own way. What with the mellowing deliciousness and all. She reaches for her mug, and pulls the tea earlier than she told Noble to. Might be a different kind, though it smells similar. Or maybe she doesn't like hers quite so strong? Ah, the mystery of tea drinking. "There's a whole planet that needs exploring, and I'm here to be sure none of the plants injure delicate soldiers like you. We need the marines to stay upright to take care of any hostilities that may come our way." Suri sits at the bar with Noble, each with a mug of hot beverage. There's a pot of water between them, and a long wooden box of teabags open nearby. The botanist appears to be gateway drugging the CMC now. First tea, tomorrow organic salads and chia smoothies.

The first structure completed on Piraeus was a 'recreation center' that was thinly veiled as such. Checkpoint Charlie's is in every other way a blue collar bar with an unsurprising bent towards the military establishment. Camouflage netting hangs from the ceiling with some kind of dried vine tangled throughout. On the walls are pictures and mementos of times past on the planet they currently reside on. There are a few billiards tables smuggled out to Piraeus specifically for this location, along with card tables and an fully functional line of taps and kegs mounted to, perhaps unsurprisingly, a beat-up but taken-care-of oak bar. The matching stools and wood tables seem to indicate that the construction workers may have disassembled someone else's bar back on the Colonies. The story even goes that the name is taken from a former bar on Aerilon that happened to resemble, very closely, this particular establishment.

With the tea-timing coming to a close, Noble takes out the teabag, setting it aside. Next comes the little bit of faux cream and the contents of the opaque bag that is either sweetener or drugs. Noble's fine either way. "Right, right I've heard some reports on that. I'm not necessarily interested in guarding you civs down here while it's so damned cold, but when it heats up I'm going to try to pull a couple of babysitting runs." He looks over to her, giving her a matter-of-factly nod. "No offense meant, miss. I love me our civvies. I just heard some scuttle that some of you CIDSR folk are still pulling groups out in the cold? What's up with that?"

Speaking of delicate soldiers and gateway drugs, one of the air wing's erstwhile pilots, and frequent flier at Charlie's, saunters on into the makeshift bar. The woman's in civilian attire today: a blouse and skirt, sheer hose, combat boots and her fatigue jacket. Her dark hair is left down this evening, as befits what looks like a night on the town. She has a faint smile on her lips like she's thinking about a dirty joke she just heard, as her feet carry her toward the bar.

"Science is a harsh mistress." Suri adds only about a teaspoon of chunky brown crystals to her tea. She swirls the crystals with a small wooden stir. "We get the job done on tight deadlines regardless of the terrain and weather quality." She raises her mug to her lips to take a sip, perhaps also to hide the expression on her face. She's seated at the end of the bar, her profile to the door. She doesn't notice Bennett until she's almost to the bar, and it's then that the botanist's gaze sweeps over the pilot. "You'd have to work a lot harder to offend me, Noble." And to the newly arrived, blue-eyed pilot, she says, "St. Clair. You look like you've just heard a good joke. Care to share?" She reaches out a hand to the woman in welcome. "Tea?"

"Give it time, Suri. I'm like a virus. It just takes a while for me to get under your skin." Noble fires back, taking up the mug in two hands and giving the tea a short, pensive sip. His eyes narrow and his head jerks back suddenly, his tongue pressed to the inside of his jaw to try to soothe it. "Damn…shit's frakking hot." He sets the mug down and blows into it. "Sixty seconds you said?" He gives Suri one of those shame on you faces, then looks over to Bennett.

Blouse? Skirt? Military staff with bared knees? Noble manages to not blink when Bennett arrives, but he does manage to fail at obfuscating the typical male response of noticing. "Saint, hey there. This should be right up your alley, it's water based." He winks, then goes for a drag of his cigarette. "Pull up one."

Bennett touches Suri's shoulder lightly as she passes, and slides onto a stool next to her at the bar. Two down from Noble. "Ms. Charu. Fancy meeting you here. I'd say you spend a lot of time in Charlie's, but I suppose that implies I do, too." Her smile turns impish when she's asked to share what's so funny. "Perhaps later." That door is politely and succinctly closed. "I would love tea, thank you. Surprise me." She brought a purse in here with her tonight, and it's set on the counter so she can rummage through it for… something. Her pack of cigarettes, probably. She speaks to Noble without glancing up, "It is, actually. I'm a bit of a tea-o-phile." Rummage, rummage. "Do either of you have a smoke to spare?"

Suri smiles as the marine's a bit burned by his hot tea, and resists the obvious comment regarding steam and situational awareness. This time. "You may wish to sip it slowly, marine." She taps the mug again. "Our bartender over-boils the water. I expect it's a reaction to the cold." She probably knew that, given the amount of time she spends here, which is practically every night. Civvies don't have unlimited access to the ship, though, so it's really of little surprise. "You're correct on both counts, Captain. It's frankly too cold outside for me to go into the field, and my studies are a bit of a long game. I do my thinking here." She indicates the entirety of the bar with a sweep of her hand. "In this oasis. Frankly, I'd rather be on a beach, compiling my notes and earning a proper sunburn." She seems to let the earlier inquiry (re: joke) go without a blink, and instead walks her fingers through the sundry teas to select a pale, long green leaves and warm toned dry bits. It smells sweet, faintly citrus, with a sharp note. It calls to mind much warmer locales. Perhaps in honor of the beach-mention, the pyramid mesh bag is passed to Bennett, along with a little stir from which to suspend it into hot water. "Another mug, please, bartender." She intones the last as if it's a term of great respect. Reverence for the keeper of the drinks, oh yes. "I should have brought warmer socks." She pulls a little CMC engraved zippo out of her pocket, and puts that on the bar. It's an older style, hailing from around the time of the first war. "I have a light." No smokes, apparently.

"And just for that, Suri, when you do get that head and sunbathing I'm going to find you with a bucket of ice-cold water. Damn, that frakkin…" He winces, testing the tip of his tongue to determine whether or not it's got feeling back yet. "…hurt. Bleh. Meh. I think I'm fine. I'll live." He sighs, and then mindlessly nudges his pack of cigarettes towards the two ladies. Apparently he's got extras. "Anyway, it'll be better when it heats back up and the swimsuits break out. The leave was way worth it back then. Now? Not so much."

Simon leans back, looking down the row of barstools to Bennett. He gives her an upward what's up tilt of his head, then motions to his pack of cigarettes. "What's up, Saint? I ran off to the head the other night and when I came back you and that Lennox chick kinda bailed? That Ella girl's pretty cool for a Navy girl, though. You missed some good opportunities to frak with some drunk idiots."

Bennett's eyes half-lid at mention of beaches and warmer climes. She's actually troubled to apply some eyeshadow tonight: a cool, shimmery blue that brings out the sapphire of her rather striking eyes. The mesh pyramid is brought to her nose and inhaled from deeply, while she awaits the hot water. "What do they have you working on, anyway?" she asks the civilian, lashes lifting finally as Noble's voice shakes her out of her reverie. To the marine, "You'd better believe I brought one." A swimsuit, presumably. "Oh, I'm sorry, I had to get back for a patrol. It sounds like you had a good time, though." She reaches for a cigarette, mouth crooking into a lopsided smile.

Suri glances over to Noble as he makes his threat. She watches him with those inscrutable dark eyes, and all that's really clear is that she's doing some thinking about what he's just said. Whether she's plotting a countermove or not is unclear. Just the silence that accompanies that look might be enough to give a lesser man pause, but Noble is a marine. Surely, he'll take it as all in good bartime fun. Finally, she smiles. "Some like it less… hot. The flavor is agreeable? If not, we'll try something different." Her gaze lingers on the marine's mug for a moment. It's still steaming. Still. "Perhaps iced next time?"

"I work on whatever they deign to give me, though today I'm checking soil samples to see what kind of nutrients we have, and what might grow with little to no doctoring. Every environment is different, and it's my job to determine what's sustainable, and just how much labor and resources are necessary to make a go of planting here." At least that's what the official story is. "I can't wait to get out and catalog the flora. When the weather turns, I'll be in the field until someone ties me to the lab furniture. I brought my good hiking boots. If we're lucky, we'll discover some medicinally applicable plant life here. Every new world has so much to offer." And if she smokes across any mind altering extracts, well, so much the better for the priests, right?

Noble stares back at Suri, his green eyes unblinking and unafraid. So he's made a threat, but it's hard for the man to hide that he doesn't find Suri threatening. He gives her a demure little shrug and reaches out for his mug again, blowing into it. "I like my hot things hot, so no iced next time. What I tasted before oh gods oh gods pain was nice." He smirks. "Oh don't you look at me like that."

"Corporal?" A voice rings out, speaking from behind the marine's back. It's one of the naval staffers, and she's carrying a paper that includes what could only be orders to return. When Noble sees her, he sighs and rolls his eyes. "Yes, Corporal, your transport has been waiting. Please come with me."

Someone's going to get yelled at a little bit. Again.

"That's my boat. Captain? Suri? Y'all have a good one. In answer to your question, Saint? I had a pretty damned good time. I'm just sayin next time…" He looks to the naval staffer. "…which will probably be a while but next time don't bounce. Or do. Ella's easy on the eyes." He smirks and then makes an animated display of being walked back to his bedroom. He lost track of the time. It wasn't his fault, was it?

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