Climbing the walls
Walking in the door, Shay tossed her packages onto the nearby sofa, and set her purse on the dining room table. Kicking her shoes off, so hard that one hit the wall and left a mark, she plopped down onto the big over-stuffed side chair, and melted into the cushion.
She was exhausted, but still antsy. After days of just hanging around the house waiting to hear from Mark, and hearing nothing, Shay had then tried to contact Carol. She hoped Carol might be able to give her some insight into any possible job leads Duibne might have, wanting desperately to get back to doing something constructive. Hell, at the moment she knew she wouldn't even mind doing something DEstructive, if she could only get out of the house on a regular basis, and have something to focus on besides herself.
Alec had left word that he was away, so she couldn't even call him up to invite over for dinner. Cooking dinner would have even been a nice distraction, and Shay HATED cooking. There just didn't seem to be anything she could do, and that was the main, only reason really, why she had forced herself to go shopping.
She had only been out for about two hours when the headache hit, and after fighting it for another half hour, Shay gave in and drove home. She didn't bother taking anything for them, since pain killers seemed to have no effect on her. The only thing she could think to do when a headache hit, was to lie down and try to sleep, having achieved minimal success in ridding herself of the pain that way.
Dragging herself from the chair, Shay moved into the kitchen, and pulled out a bottle of white wine from the fridge. Pouring herself a generous goblet full, she drank half its contents before returning to the chair. About ten minutes later she was fast asleep, snuggled in a fetal position, empty glass on the carpeted floor by the chair.
A dark man speaking to Shay with a slight accent. She felt no fear of this man, but did feel a lot of confusion. She couldn't see his face, or if she did she didn't remember it, nor did she recall anything he said. But for some reason she felt he was important to her.
There was something else too, that Shay brought from this dream...a picture of a family, and the vision of her sitting at a big table among all the other people. The scene was foggy, much like that of the face on her mysterious man, but it seemed just as important.
Moving to sit up, Shay felt her fingers graze something on her carpet, and realized it was her dropped wine glass. Picking it up she stood and walked wobbly to the kitchen. She was awake, without doubt, yet still a little foggy headed. After she set the glass on her counter, Shay stood there staring off into space, while her mind reeled with interest.
Had this been another nightmare...or were these true memories? Did this man in her dreams have significance, or was he a metaphor for something going on in her life right now? And the family...did it have something to do with Ginnie and Alec, or perhaps her test family...or was Shay getting back recollections of her past?
"Are you indisposed? I would like to relax and process, perhaps do something entertaining."
checking the time, and when the text had come in, Shay realized it hadn't been too long since Alec had tried to contact her. She pushed number two on her speed dial, and waited for him to pick up. The number one on her speed dial was still set to Ginnie's cellphone. Shay had attempted to delete it several times, but somehow was always distracted. She figured it was probably something psychological, but hadn't assigned any time to analyze the matter further. It wasn't hurting anyone or anything by keeping the number as it was. She always had time to change it later.
"Alec? I'm home, and bored, and certainly up for company...want me to cook some dinner?"
Her voice was unfettered with earlier concerns. Knowing she was going to be seeing Alec always made her feel better. She was curious to know what he had to 'process', and what he'd been up to, that he now required relaxing, but she knew she could offer him a place, and an ear for both. It was the 'entertaining' part she wasn't sure about, but guessed between the two of them they could probably come up with something.
"That would be lovely. I will be over directly."
He opted not to bring a wine of any variety, but he did take the time to grab his large wool overcoat and some of his toys. He felt that they may go out this evening. There were a couple of projects that he could bring her along on, if she had the interest. If not, the observers in position would be capable enough to complete the work on their own. Smiling slightly, he wondered if the teams were irritated with him - they had become used to his role as an administrator, and more recently he had started using his fingers to lift things himself once again.
It felt good. There was something just so much more pure, more wholesome to theft. Killing was just so...sticky.
Arriving at Shay's door, he let himself in. She would be notified by the motion sensors that he had installed of his arrival.
Pulling the door to the fridge open, Shay took stock, removed some things, then opened the cupboards and added a few more items to the growing pile on her counter. By the time she Alec enter, she had pasta cooking on the stove, a nice Alfredo sauce simmering, a Caesar salad made, and garlic bread heating in the oven. Washing her hands she tossed the drying towel over her shoulder, and went to embrace her father.
"Wow, you're looking very well. It's good to see you."
Her eyes lit up at the sight of him and her compliment was completely sincere. He looked a lot better to her tonight, than he had in ages. The image before her ran contrary to what she expected since hearing he wanted to relax, but whatever, she felt even better now.
"Want some wine, or I do have something harder...?"
By now Alec knew where Shay kept her small alcoholic arsenal, under the counter in her kitchen. He could help himself to whatever, she had told him before.
It was impossible for her not to smile, as she gazed at him. Not normally a dour person, Shay still hadn't had much to smile about these past few months, but being with Alec was one of the few constants in her life that lifted her spirits.
"Dinner is simple, but should be okay, and ready shortly."
She hoped he would like the fare, and overlook the simplicity.
"And what was this about relaxing? Have you been working yourself to near death still?"
If he was, he wasn't the worse for wear.
"I am starting to feel a bit more my old self again. Aspects are still uneven, but I have felt, since your return, more of my old self asserting itself over the less pleasant emergent aspects of my personality. I think things are normalizing, if not precisely healed. Physically, my eye is much recovered, which also helps. My perception of the world is no longer skewed, so to speak. The tissue damage is clear, as well...not that anyone would notice."
Wiggling his gloved hand in front of her, he placed his coat over the back of a chair as he wandered past her table. Expanding his sense of smell, he nodded. Flaring his nostrils, he drank in the scents from the kitchen. It had been quite awhile since he had smelled cooking in progress. It somehow gave him a small, warm feeling in the middle, as if in anticipation of the culinary treats to come. Nodding at the offer of wine, he considered the cream content of the sauce.
"Yes, wine please, from the scent I would say something a bit acidic to cut the cream - a Barbera if you have one, Reisling if not."
At the next question, he shook his head a bit.
"Yes and no. I have been keeping very busy, as you know, but I am changing some of the aspects of my work around...much to the frustration of the teams, I am certain. I have been a bit more hands on recently in managing the press and the evidence that slips from our world to the humans. Much more pleasant than some of the other nasty business that I felt compelled to practice more recently. The interesting thing is that people started to view me very quickly in a different light. I am comfortable with the extra mystery added surrounding me and my capabilities, but displeased with some of the reputation surrounding my name. Taking this step back will help all aspects of what I feel I need to work on, so that helps...and makes me feel a bit better."
Sitting down at the table, he watched his daughter move about her space. There was a new confidence to her motions. Either the vacation had done her good, or she was coming to terms with her living arrangements.
"And you? Keeping busy, or still looking for new projects with which to occupy your time?"
Shay handed Alec the wine and a corkscrew, then dished up the food into appropriate serving dishes, after setting the table. Her tablescape was a fine, but plain Irish linen table cloth of pale ivory, a darker cream colored runner, and a simple trio of graduating candle sticks, lit now, and casting a warm glow over everything. Once the food had been placed in the center of the table, Shay gestured for Alec to sit. Shay retrieved two cold wine glasses from the fridge, and placed them next to each individual setting, then seated herself once there was nothing further for her to do.
"Keeping busy is good...it eliminates the need for clawing at the walls out of sheer boredom."
Shay didn't want to bring things down with her mood. Besides, she had every intent of changing her mood now. Being around Alec gave her fond old memories, as well as the promise of good new ones. Even thoughts of time shared with Ginnie were mellowing into bittersweet remembrances now. Gone was the need to cry every time her name was brought up, and in the place of tears were happy visions of times spent together.
"I'm sure your team will curse you periodically, if only to themselves, but I'm also fairly certain they'll get over it and do what needs to be done."
Shay knew her father had a talent for getting people to do what was needed, and didn't doubt him for a second.
"And I can't help but believe an air of mystery isn't a benefit to someone in your position."
Though she couldn't see Alec all that mysteriously, she knew not everyone saw all the facets to his personality that she did either.
She was a little curious to know what aspects of his reputation he was finding to be less than pleasant, but didn't ask. If he was feeling better about it, that was what mattered to her.
"I don't know what happened to Marc...that guy who supposedly hired me on to help him with some research. I haven't heard from him in days."
Shay shrugged as she passed Alec the salad, her own salad plate covered by half with the leafy greens.
"I actually went out shopping today, for want of something better to do."
And coming from anyone but Shay, that might not have sounded so strange. Shay, however, wasn't all that big on shopping.
"I picked up some shirts for you...I'll show you later."
Shay was making small talk, wanting Alec to have the time he needed to relax. She was letting him set the pace of the evening, and would pick up on it as they went along. But she had truly bought him a few nice turtleneck shirts in various dark colors of grey, wine, navy, and forest green, and was a little excited to give them to him.
It was a thought that hit her while she was shopping. She wasn't sure if Ginnie had been at all responsible for Alec's wardrobe, or even if the man himself took the time to get such things. But when Shay passed a men's clothing store window, and saw the shirts, she thought of Alec immediately, and couldn't be swayed from getting him a few things.
"Oh, and I also tried to reach Carol, to see if she might be able to steer me toward something in Duibne, but she's not an easy woman to pin down these days."
"You set a pleasant table, Shay. Well done."
Listening for a moment as she spoke, he realized that she was holding some content in reserve. Perhaps it was something she still needed to wrap her head around, or perhaps it was something that she was not quite at terms with herself. He had sensations like that, from time to time. Rarely could he place them with effort. They required time to mature and ripen on their own. Content to let her recount her recent events, he relaxed into the evening and sampled some of the salad. He was pleased to see that the supplies were still coming in very fresh. He had remembered as previous winters progressed that the fruits and vegetables had been less and less pleasant. At her mention of her prospective employer, he shook his head.
"I have not seen any new data on him in city. Perhaps he moved on a bit more rapidly than he had intended."
At the mention of shirts, Alec smirked. He frequently wondered what other people would choose for him. He knew through Ginnie that his fashion tastes could be a bit unusual, and his lack of color in the wardrobe a bit boring. Perhaps that could be a fun project for them at some point - giving each other fashion advice.
"Thank you for the thought. I am certain they will be lovely."
At the mention of Carol, Alec shook his head sadly.
"It is strange to not have her bouncing about. The new woman is skilled, but not as vibrant. I wonder what Carol has been doing to keep busy."
Hopefully Simon knew. If not, he should probably find out. If Carol decided to put the hurt on Tacharan, she could certainly do it. Making sure there were no plans in that direction, however closely aligned they may have been formally, would be necessary.
"We should check in on her sometime soon."
She beamed inside from his compliment. Where she once would have reacted a lot more exuberantly, Shay was learning to tone down her emotions, and appear more sedate. Children, it seemed, were the only ones truly allowed to express their feelings without regard for propriety.
"Thanks...its fun to do when its not expected, or routine."
Remembering she had left the salt and pepper shakers on the stove, Shay brought them to the table with a subtle flick of her wrist, and tried to watch Alec's reaction from beneath her eyelashes. Her ability to move objects about was becoming easier and less noticiable with each passing day, as her practicing was working wonders. She seemed to have inherited two talents from her 'parent's, and since Ginnie was the one who had truly given Shay life, it stood to reason that it was Ginnies' talent of telekinesis that followed into Shay more strongly.
Alec's ability to discern things...his perception talents...Shay had also picked up on, but with Shay those things were a lot less tangible than telekinesis, and her practice of them somewhat more difficult. Therefore she hadn't given as much time to developing those skills as she had the other. She had no intentions of giving up on them though, and tried to do what she could to hone them, even if in slower and less frequent processes.
"I sort of figured that too...something might have come up and he decided Nachton really wasn't the place for him. I hope anyway, that was all it was. He seemed a nice enough guy."
And if Alec hadn't got wind of anything bad, Shay decided then and there that Marc was fine, but gone from Nachton, and no longer a prospective employer.
The term 'bouncing' made Shay smile. It was probably that bounciness of spirit she had found to be kindred with Carol. Even if Shay was learning to act in a slightly more sedate manner, more often than not her heart was still quite bouncy in her chest.
"I've not given up on her,and intend on finding out what's keeping her busy. Even if she turns out not to be a true connection to Duibne, she might be able to refer me on to someone who is. But that aside...she really seems nice, and I need more contacts...friends...outside these four walls."
Shay was pleased with the food, and that she seemed to have a natural knack for cooking. If only she liked the chore more, she thought to herself with a small smile.
"But what exactly have you been doing? Can you talk about it, or do I need to wait for a special security clearance?"
Shay teased. She was quite interested in the guts of the matter, but as usual Alec seemed stingy with details.
"I hope his departure was simple business. Perhaps he will return in short order."
Smiling a bit sadly, Alec nodded.
"She can be very nice, but she is still human. She responds somewhat unpredictably to some situations. I do hope that her departure does not have any ill side effects. I can imagine the difficulty that she must be going through, and I think that yes, she could use a good friend. She could be a difficult prey to track, however, should you choose that course. Knowing others outside the walls can be a sobering experience, and reminds me that there are some individuals I should get back in touch with. It is possible that you would enjoy some of them."
Alec chuckled. Perhaps he had been a bit evasive. Letting the drama build a bit, he sampled the pasta. Twirling it slowly around his fork, he lifted the morsel to his mouth, and allowed himself to savor it.
"This is quite good. Thank you. Ah, we have been in the process of integrating the Assistant District Attorney into Tacharan politics, so to speak. Her boss seems to have died, and now we are hoping to groom a potential successor to have our best interests in mind. Things have not gone as smoothly as I would have liked, so I am taking some precautionary measures and ensuring that the spill-over is minimal to nonexistent. I hope she does well...she seemed a nice person, if a bit given over to her baser needs from time to time."
And how Ellis managed to get ahold of her boy toy, who could know. It had not been a smooth on boarding, to say the least. She had already witnessed the less than pleasant side of their world. Alec felt that starting with the perks was more logical. Well, at least they did not have to put on airs about her.
She did get immense pleasure though, seeing the pleasure her food brought to others, and because of that vowed to cook more often.
"Ah yes, I do keep forgetting she's human. I can't say I have a lot of experience with humans, and I guess her previous heavy involvement with Duibne made it even easier to forget that."
Not to mention, her experience with people in general was pretty limited. If it wasn't for what she observed on television, she would really be in a world of hurt.
"Maybe we could have a small party? If you think your friends would like that...if you would like that...? Not right away, but whenever you think you might be ready?"
The idea hit Shay like a bolt out of the blue, and she gave it a small bit of consideration before putting it out in front of Alec. Maybe if he had a little more fun time to go with all the work he was doing, his life would be better balanced. And Shay's as well. God knew she could always do with meeting more people, and people she shared some commonalities with would be even better.
She had met a lot of people on her short sojourn, but nothing became of that, nor had she expected it to. She was back home now and didn't relish going through the next hundred years as some spinster locked up in her apartment.
Though she had thought about getting a cat.
"A new Assistant District Attorney...hmmm...important company you're keeping." Shay smiled at Alec across the table, teasing him slightly.
"And 'baser needs'? That sounds rather intriguing. Did she make a play for you?"
Shay was even more curious now. It didn't take a rocket scientist to decode 'baser needs', though she couldn't puzzle out the specifics without more information. It seemed to her that if the woman was being groomed for a prestigious position such as ADA, she would need to be more than a little above reproach. The intrigue deepened for Shay, as her mind wrapped itself around Alec's words.
"Precautionary measures? How did her boss die?"
Curiouser and curiouser.
"The idea certainly has merit, and it has been too long. Part of me wonders if anyone will even show up. I suppose our kind are more patient than humans, so anything to punctuate the routine is like to draw them out. I will begin playing with the idea in the coming days, and see who is available."
Chuckling with perhaps a bit of sadness, he nodded.
"Poor thing seems to have a taste for our kind. Apparently she had tried for me, though I was not entirely aware of it, made a pass at Simon, wound up with a fellow named Tai...all vampires. Hopefully no one who is unfriendly to our kind decides to follow her around, eventually they might find half of our population in the city. I had her slated for long term integration into Tacharan's human associates, but the timeline accelerated greatly when her boss was shot multiple times in his office. Now she needs to be kept aware of the current state of affairs and given some protection."
He was not pleased that Tai was watching her, but it was somewhat moot. He had people watching both Tai and Yuu, protecting their perimeter. It seemed like they would have plenty to talk about without having to worry over imminent danger.
Not that it mattered. What mattered was he was here with her, healing, and open to such suggestions. That he also wanted to see who was available to attend the party seemed a little contrived again didn't matter. In her mind Shay thought people just decided to have parties, and did. Send out invitations to a bunch of people, plan drinks, food, activities, then waited for the guests to arrive. However, what he said did make sense. It wasn't like she knew a lot of people to invite, and Shay hadn't known Alec to associate socially much, unless he did so in secrecy or had done so before she had entered the picture. Consequently she would now leave the ball in his court, and wait to see what he would decide.
"That's fine then. I'll wait till you let me know."
There was something else poking at Shay's mind just then that she knew had significance to the party, but too far out of reach to grab. She had the feeling that this ellusive bit of information might have bearing on a party they might have during the next few weeks, but would have to trust if the idea was important, it would come to her soon. For now she was more interested in hearing about the Assistant District Attorney.
A little irritated that someone would make a play for Alec, so soon after he had lost Ginnie, Shay put those feelings on the back burner once she heard the woman was pretty much a slut, and given to going after anyone with a penis, be it human, or vampire. It wasn't fair of her to jump to conclusions, she knew, and if anyone but Alec had been the woman's target Shay doubted she would have given it a second thought. Jealousy was new to Shay, and though she didn't like the way she felt, she wasn't sure what she could do to change it. It was good that Alec didn't seem interested. Shay would have to trust that he would put this woman in her place should she attempt her seduction again.
"And are you the only one able to protect her?"
That idea didn't set well with Shay either, but she knew better than to voice her concerns. Alec was a grown man, and one who had lived a few years longer than she had. From what she knew of him, he was more than competent, honerable, and level headed. He could surely take care of himself, and Shay wouldn't disrespect him by assuming otherwise.
Besides, Alec mentioned his concern for the vampires, which this woman could be a threat to. Knowing that was his top priority made Shay feel better too.
"And how long will she require protection? Do they know who killed her boss, and why? Maybe they should find someone less dangerous for that position..."
No one had asked Shay for her opinion, but this was Alec she was talking to, and she didn't think he would mind. Also, some of what he said didn't make a lot of sense to Shay, so if he could elaborate, it might help her understand better.
"We...us...our kind...we want someone in position who will do what we need to be done?
That might explain some of the reasonings behind this woman and having her assume the DA's spot.
"Oh no. I will not be protecting her personally, at this time. She has an assigned in house bodyguard, and they will be observed by my teams. I think the choice of bodyguard could have been a bit more tactful, but that was a decision made for expediency."
Well, and the sick sense of humor that resided in Ellis, but no need to cover that at present.
"She will require protection for the rest of her life, more likely than not. In some ways it seems more trouble than it is worth, as she has not been especially receptive to the integration process. Hopefully she will come around. It will make protecting her easier on her bodyguard. While she flails about and does not do what she needs to do...well...her probability of survival, even with capable protection, falls precipitously. It is far easier to kill a person than to protect one that resents their shield."
Considering for a moment, Alec pondered the hit orders and wondered how much of his guesses to share. Shaking his head, he said
"At this point they are mostly guesses. We do not know for sure, but we do know a couple of links in the chain. They should lead back to the person of origin with a combination of research and a getle application of coercion."
Nodding at her final statements, he smiled.
"Yes, we should get someone a bit more malleable for the position. Knowing which way the ADA, and eventually the District Attorney will go is very important should one of our agents be compromised in the field or, worse, apprehended. Having someone sympathetic or on our payroll greases those wheels. The frustration is that, given the normal amount of time to make the transition and given the proper handlers, Miss Yuukaku would have been able to fill the clan's needs. Now, she has become a potentially wasted asset and a personal point of frustration. Very little of it is her own fault, but it is always a bit disappointing to see a project fall to pieces. Now, we salvage what we can and set up contingencies should it fail."
Shay wondered if Alec worried about her, or if he saw the role as 'father' in a different light than she did.
"So you're not grooming her for the DA position any longer..."
Her conversation continued on the topic at hand, while her mind seemed to ponder other issues as well.
"In that case why will she need our protection once the new DA is chosen?"
Using the proverbial 'we', Shay was referring to the vampire family, to which she included herself, though in a somewhat removed fashion. Not being involved herself, in this process meant she could be interested, but that was about all. No one cared what she thought, nor did she have the experience or knowledge to have any useful suggestions, but she was still curious, and would be waiting to hear what happened next.
"It seems a rather large commitment for one who seems to have such little value beyond a certain point. Wouldn't it just be easier to put someone into the position that we have confidence in, as soon as possible, then just do away with Miss Yuukaku?"
Shay's thoughts on humans weren't entirely prejudiced, but if she were to think about that more, she'd find her father's opinions were beginning to merge into hers somewhat. She still thought of Carol as more than just a mere human, but then too, Carol hadn't made an inappropriate play for her father, to earn her a lower place in Shay's mind.
The more aware Shay became, of herself and her surroundings, the more complicated everything became. At times she had to admit she missed the simplicity that came right after her rebirth.
"Well, we are...and we are not. She knows what she needs to do in order to be successful in the position. We are using her as bait, as well. Perhaps the next assassin will be too careless, and we will have another clue in who is behind things. Being bait does not please her much, but then again she would be dead if not for our direct intervention. She is not terribly appreciative of the circumstances."
Once the new DA is chosen. That was a bit of a problem to handle.
"That poses difficulty in any case. Either she gets the position and works for us, or she works against us, or she is assassinated as well and someone who benefits this unknown third party comes to the position. Or possibly it is simply a move to reduce clan influence in the office. We worked closely with the former DA, perhaps someone did not like that. It is really too early to say."
Alec hoped that, despite difficulties, Yuu would be able to pull off the transition and work well within the clan's human associates. There was something nagging him in that regard, and he wondered what he had missed. There was a clue somewhere, something that was not being taken fully into account. He did agree with his daughter on one count.
"You are right. It is a lot of trouble. Hopefully the trap will be worth the effort."
Sighing, he wondered where things could have gone better in the whole process. No Ellis would have helped. On the bright side, if Alec ever had to walk through Nachton with a cross on his back, he knew what he would name it.
"She must at least have half a brain...it seems that would be a prerequisite to that kind of job. So she must also realize its in her best interest to work FOR us."
While Shay finished the pasta on her plate the room was quiet, but in the companionable silence Shay's mind kept spinning.
"I suppose you've got people close to this woman to monitor her moves...I mean besides her 'guards'?"
And yet another thought from the blue. Shay now wondered if perhaps she might be able to help with the cause, maybe by posing as the woman's assistant. But then...would that kind of position really be necessary with other's acting as guards?
"I don't suppose Miss Yuukaku needs an assistant to her assistant DA position?"
It was a silly idea, and one that Shay was sure would have been put into place already if it had merit. But what the heck did it hurt to ask? It was just another example of what being without a job was doing to Shay. She was now grasping at straws!
People close to her...grinning, Alec nodded.
"She currently resides in a house of my own design, where I do trial runs of technology that I am adapting for Domicile security. Needless to say, the system is now fully active and Mr. Kim is now monitoring her around the clock, with the assistance of his team. He was quite thankful for such a mundane task, actually. Generally he prefers research or advancing technical applications over observation."
Assistant to the Assistant...
"I would not choose to put you in such a socially painful situation, especially since there will likely be an assassin paying her a visit shortly. I actually had something else in mind for you...if you are interested, of course. Get your jacket...we have a short trip ahead of us."
Smiling, he wondered if Shay would enjoy the evening. If nothing else, she would get to see the parts of his work he enjoyed the most.
She did ponder the 'socially painful' term though, for a few seconds, before she tossed her napkin on the table, and went to the coat closet at his command.
"Cool! I'm ready!" The dishes on the table were a forgotten memory. Cleaning up would wait, and give Shay something to do later. The apartment already smelled of garlic so it wasn't like the leftovers would make things worse.
"But really...am I so hopeless that you don't think I would be able to maintain during social situations?"
She wasn't hurt by his words, so much as just a little discouraged. It never occurred to her that she was being less than at ease during whatever encounter she came in contact with. Not that she was likely to rush right out and sign up for a lecture tour for college audiences of several hundred at a run, but in small gatherings Shay thought she was able to hold her own these days.
She would examine that matter further when she was being faced with less pressing activities.
Opening the door, Shay waved her father through.
"Where are we going? What is this mystery task? Is this a real job, or some pity position?"
Shay giggled at the last comment, not at all feeling pitiful, even if maybe she should have. It wasn't really in her nature to feel sorry for herself, but rather to find a way to put a positive spin on things if she could. She couldn't hide her excitement though, and was having a little trouble standing still.
"I'm sorry...you were finished with dinner, weren't you?"
She blushed a little in embarrassment, to realize she had basically just run Alec out of the house.
Confused initially by her question, he realized the context and what he had been saying. Laughing lightly, he shook his head. Putting on his jacket, he explained.
"No, not you. I think you are a capable and skilled conversationalist. Miss Yuukaku, however, is not well adjusted at this point, and would make anyone dizzy. The only point of interest that I am pleased about with her whole arrangement is that I do not need to be there personally, and can take time out to go have 'fun' with my daughter. Now, let us go steal things for the betterment of our species."
Smiling as they left the apartment, he tried to keep up.
"We are going on assignment. It is an acquisition - private investigator seems to be too interested in someone who works for Tacharan. We will steal his research and see what he has. Likely, it will be basic enough, but sometimes it is startling what abilities people will use on camera. If it is something that merely inconveniences the subject's life, we will leave it in place as an object lesson. If some portion has a supernatural bouquet, we will intervene. Shall we?"