It's late, 2:15am late, and Brooke is making her way out of the now closed bar. She's carrying a small brown package under one arm, and glancing around somewhat nervously as she makes her way to the car.
"Chevelle girl!" Of all the people Brooke might have wanted to see heading to cut her off, a certain moustachioed tradesman probably wasn't one of them. As well as his brown leather briefcase, he's waving something wrapped in brown paper. "How're you doing?"
Brooke rolls her eyes skyward, glancing over her shoulder briefly before shifting her weight and looking to Harry. "Fine. Tired Harry. And it's late. There'll be no sales now... you should go home."
"Well, I ain't in the sales business today, I'm hopin' to be in the givin business," Harry says, slightly breathlessly. "I was feelin' bad about 'aving treated you so badly like, and I couldn't stand the thought of such a lovely lady bein' so annoyed with me for me little ways. And I remembered that I said that I would make it up to you if I could, and then this came into my little emporium in a job lot of stuff, and I thought it wasn't much but maybe it'd be a good thing to give to you." He proffers the brown paper package. "So, I'm sorry for stealin' your radio, and I want to offer yer this little gift in token of that."
Brooke looks to the man and hmms thoughtfully. "Huh." She takes the package and backs up a step, tucking her other package under one arm. Tightly. Then she's opening the wrapped item up to peek inside.
Inside the package, somewhat beaten up, and with a nasty oil stain across the front cover, is a maintenance manual (not the owner's manual - one that details how to perform various maintenance tasks, lists part numbers, etc) for Chevelles from 1970-73). Harry shifts nervously from foot to foot. "Maybe you've already got one," he comments, "but it came in and I thought, y'know."
Brooke looks at the book with a wide grin, "Nah, I don't have this actually. Well I didn't." She peers at him then, curiously. "Why would a guy like you even care what I thought of you? I mean. Thanks, don't get me wrong. I just don't get you Harry."
Harry looks uncomfortable. His ferrety nose twitches. "Don't really know," he says, smiling. "Maybe the memory of your eyes made me feel guilty," he shrugs, ducking his head. "Look, I'm a shyster, a shuckster, a wheeler-dealer. I buy and I sell. And occasionally, I...you know. Appropriate things. But I ain't evil." A pause. "Oh, and I need a favour. No biggy."
Brooke laughs then, tucking the book under her arm. "So you're bribing me. Well, whatever. What's the favor Harry. Maybe I'll humor you this once."
"Well," Harry says. "I've been retained for investergation purposes by a lovely young lady, whose sister 'as gone and done a bunk from Seattle. And I did some inquirering, and found that she might 'ave been 'eading for St. Claire, which would be in the way of making sense, cos that's where her sister - my client - lives. An it struck me that if I were a teenager who thought she was a bit older and tougher than she is, that I might end up in a bar." He proffers a tatty bit of paper. "'er name is Abigail. If you see her, fancy letting me know?"
Brooke looks to the man as she goes to follow his story. "So some girl asked you to keep an eye out for her sister, who she thinks might show up in town?"
"Well, not quite," Harry says. "She hired me to *find* her sister, who 'as gone missing. And I've tracked her, I think, to St. Claire." He shrugs. "Just a question of tryin' to find 'er, check she's OK, tell 'er that 'er sister's worried like."
Brooke nods. "Abigail what? Or don't we know that much. And do we have a description?"
"Abigail Bell - an the descriptions on this bit of paper," Harry waves it. "Blonde, about so high, bit of a heartbreaker - well, her twin sister is, anyway. Probably thinks she's a bit tough, in a kind of fragile way." He pauses, twisting his lips in a look of worry. "To be honest, the kind that's goin' ta get 'erself in trouble, like as not."
Brooke nods, smiling then. "Know the type. Personally, almost, you could say. So what, you're charging this girl some insane price to do this looking around and all you got is word of mouth?"
Harry nods. "Yeah. She's payin' through the nose for this." He looks very happy about it. "Five whole bucks!" a pause. "And five more when I find something! Course, I had to throw in a snow globe to sweeten the deal."
Brooke narrows her eyes at this, "You being serious, or just trying to shake the guilt off the whole thing?" She adjusts her still wrapped package into the other hand then, watching the man.
"Bein' serious about what?" Harry asks, looking bemused. "I'm on the up and up here. Gettin' my investergation line of work off the ground." He taps his chest. "And I ain't doin' badly at it. Went up to Seattle, did some subtle askin' around."
"All this for ten bucks and you add in a snow globe? Ya know, real firms charge thousands. But hey. If you're saying you got a soft side for troubled kids, then whatever man. Good luck on that." Brooke chuckles, shaking her head in amusement now. She's holding an instruction manual for Chevelle's under one arm, and a brown wrapped package in her hands.
It's late, that goes without saying. But it appears as if at least a few people aren't deterred by the hour. Among them is a young, handsome redheaded man, walking the streets with his gaze mostly on the ground. While he seems to have a destination, he doesn't exactly seem to be paying much attention to his way there. So it's not too unexpected that he doesn't notice the two on the street before him as he closes in.
Harry winks at Brooke. "Don't be goin' and sayin' anythin' now," he says, conspiratorially. "I got meself a reputation. But it was all she could afford, if yer get what I'm sayin'?"
"Yeah, alright softie. But keep this in mind, ya screw with her, and I'll come looking for you. And it won't be a civil thing." Brooke shifts her weight to the other foot and raises her brows up in that 'ya get me?' sort of gesture. A glance goes the other way and she spots the redhead, grinning all the brighter.
Cole is only a few yards way when he finally looks up. Then he blinks with a dull sort of surprise. There's a faint (to be truthful, more than faint) scent of liquor about him, which might explain the second it takes for it to register that he knows one of these people. "'ey, Brooke."
Harry's eyebrows shoot up. "I should point out that I ain't devoid of protection. And I'm on the level." He looks at Cole, then back at Brooke, then sniffs. "'ey mate. You look about three sheets to the wind." A blink, and then he produces a small, tacky-looking ceramic wolf. "Want to buy a collectable wolf? Part of a set? This one's called "Ears", because it 'as some."
Brooke turns from Harry to Cole, "Hey babe. You doing alright, it's late." She glances to Harry and laughs, "Don't mind him. He's a con and a thief, but I've not found any mean bones in him yet."
Cole manages to pull out a charming smile. "Cute. N'thanks, nowhere to put it in the 'partment." He straightens himself up, tugging a hand through his hair. "'ey, 'ellcat. This the guy with the radio you mentioned?" He turns his gaze back to Harry, scrutinizing the unfamiliar face.
Brooke gives a nod, then holds up the book. "He made amends though. He's apparently got a soft side, and a guilty conscious. Oh, also. Got a package from one of Laora's cousins. Gave me something important back."
The wolf disappears into a pocket. "I was the, ahem, person of the unfortunate incident, but I believe me and the lovely lady have smoothed over the troubled waters and built a bridge of mutual understandin'." Harry nods enthusiastically. He offers a hand. "Harry Hall, businessman, trader, investergations a speciality. Owner and manager of the Cornucopia Of Excellent Goods At Low Prices, the premier environmentally friendly recycling and replacement centre in the St. Claire area. Also, payday loans offered."
Cole takes the offered hand, shaking it firmly enough despite his obvious state. "Brian Cole. Professional layabout and general charmer. Nice t'meet'cha, and to hear that things 've been smoothed over." His smile seems genuine. Until Brooke speaks, and he jerks his head to look at her, frowning. "Huh?"
She looks between the two, grinning politely at Harry before answering Cole. "Something Laora took from me last time she and I argued. Apparently, she's gone home?" she asks.
Harry looks a bit confused, but then makes ready to leave. "I'll be off, then," he says. "Do let me know if you hear a dickey about our Abigail? I've put the address of the Corny on the bit of paper with the description." He gives a grin to Cole, as well. "And if there is anything you need in the procurement line, just shout."
Cole looks faintly befuddled by Harry's language, brows drawing down. "Will do," he finally responds. "Nice meetin' ya." He nods to Brooke. "Gone'r than disco."
Brooke nods, "That's for sure." She leans in then as Harry leaves, giving Cole her news. "My silver clip. That's what I got back." Whether or not Harry's got the hearing or perception to pick that up, is another matter.
Cole gives a humorless smirk. "'s so nice of her to give it back to you, considering she's pro'lly dead by now."
Harry's long gone, heading off down the street at a fair old clip. It seems unlikely that he's overheard anything. Unless there were secret listening bugs implanted in the Chevelle manual!