Scene setting : Detective Frank Malone’s Apartment.
co-written with Chor.
Chor: The knock at the door was almost a relief. The silence and painful small-talk that went between them was awful. It was like watching people trying to pronounce words incredibly wrong or babies trying to walk for the first time. As the food entered the apartment, Isa knew the first thing she was going to do was eat. Then she could assess and conquer the situation. At the very mention of the food, she didn’t waste any time coming to where Frank had laid out the food. She pushed her slightly loose buttoned sleeves up to her elbow, showing more of the strange markings running from where her wrist met her palm to the crook of her elbow. They were so old news to her that she barely even noticed the black marks anymore.
“Wow, this all looks amazing,” Isa spoke aloud, though it was mainly to herself. She was getting slowly more comfortable. Not knowing just what she wanted, she took a bit of everything, but mostly she helped herself to the bread. For someone who doesn’t eat much, Isolde loves garlic. She supposes it’s some cosmic proof – or maybe a joke- that she’s not a vampire, despite her looks.
Isolde was just a few steps behind Frank as she took up her plate and went back to where they would watch the movie. The previews, which she was intensely uninterested in, played in the background as she settled on the couch, bare feet tucking to her left underneath her as she balanced her food on her lap expertly. On hand holding her beer, Isa raised it to Franks.
“To Claura,” she said, nodding to acknowledge Rory and her sister before taking a swig.
Razorbackwriter: Frank made sure to tap his beer can against Isa’s as she said the name of the person she wished to toast. Both took a swig of their beers right after. Frank took quite a large mouthful of beer, before letting out a loud belch. It wasn’t intended to happen, it just kinda did. Frank looked a bit sheepish and placed the beer can down on the coffee table, taking up his plate and then easing back into a more comfortable position on the couch. With one eye on the TV screen, Frank happened to notice that Isa had taken a liking to the naan. It was then he remembered it was garlic naan, and this caused him to let out a chuckle.
“Gotta love a girl that is game to eat garlic.”
He didn’t mean to sound rude, but it may have come off as such. Realizing his gaffe, he then started to recant a story about one night where he had been on a double date. It was back while he was still married, and of course the focus of the story was on his male counterpart – Rory.
“Ever been to Giano’s pizzeria palace? No? Well, one night four of us went down there and it was the night I learnt that my mate Rory loved garlic. Man, he had garlic on just about everything. Every course. I can remember his girlfriend.”At this point Frank’s eyes started to water, as though he had remembered something terribly funny. “Rory used to give her dutch ovens. Man…that night. I heard she ended up sending him to the couch. Ahaha. He totally reeked.”
By now, the movie had started, and Frank was belly laughing at the memory of that wild night with his dear friend who stunk of garlic.
“Was coming out of his pores and everything.”
Chor: After Isa’s sip,she was nearly scared to death by Frank’s burp. She turned to him, hand covering the stupid grin on her mouth. Because of a dysfunctional belch reflex, Isa has never been able to burp. She envied those who could and found burping quite hilarious.
“Yeah, you’d think I’m Italian instead of German the way I inhale this stuff…” Isa said, chewing off and swallowing another bite with a sip of her beer. Isa listened to Frank and simultaneously had her eyes on the screen for the movie to begin while his story was told. The story was personal, and quite frankly hilarious. Now it seemed they both were stepped from their comfort zones, baring souls and telling embarrassing stories. As the movie began, the story ended, but Isolde was still laughing. Frank had an infectious chuckle and you couldn’t just sit there and let him laugh alone. Is knew of the garlic pores. When she still lived with Claura, the two would eat Pasta Margherita at least twice a week and would have to spend the night locked in their rooms away from each other, using copious amounts of industrial strength mouthwash.
Soon after the movie began, whether it was the beer the tryptophan in her system from all the food she could not stop eating, it had caused her to become drowsy. She blinked a couple of times, trying to focus on an honestly confusing and sad movie, but mostly found herself unable to. Eventually, she couldn’t keep her body upright and gently slid into a comfortable sleep, her body surprised she made it through that much of the film.
Razorbackwriter: Isolde had the most beautiful laugh, and thankfully she didn’t find Frank’ story to be rude. She knew how garlic affected some people and she happily joined in even with the movie starting in the background. Frank had to wipe away the tears of laughter with one of the napkins provided with their curry meal. It felt so good to be able to laugh at something so trivial, especially about Rory. A happy memory in amongst so many that were sad.
Whatever tension there was before, had now abaited and the pair were able to enjoy the movie as it got going, whilst eating the curry from that random curry house suggested by the singing cabby. It really was a great meal, and Frank noticed that Isa had taken to it with relish. A gusto that could have been brought on by the beer possibly. Frank finished off his plate, using a piece of naan to scrape up the last traces of curry, while Isa seemed to be focused on the move. Or was she? Taking their plates, he was about to say he would wash up, when he noticed that she had fallen asleep. Right there on the couch. Frank chuckled softly as he took her plates and cutlery and eased off the couch gently so as not to wake her. He tip toed into the kitchen and then started to do the washing up, ever so often peeking through the gap between the bench and the cupboard to see if Isa had roused at all. Poor thing must have been truly exhausted.
Finishing up the dishes, Frank packed everything away – for once, and came back into the lounge room to turn off the TV. The quiet of the room only interrupted by the sound of the traffic outside his apartment building. Gently, Frank put his arms under Isa and carried her into his bedroom. He laid her down on his bed, and brought the cover up and over to lay across her as she continued to sleep soundly. Isolde was probably the first woman to sleep in his bed, since he had moved to this part of town. He bent down to kiss her forehead, before grabbing his own pillow and a blanket from the cupboard, and making his way back into the lounge, to sleep on the couch.
Chor: Isolde very rarely made it to the REM stage one so preciously needs to fully experience sleep. This also happens to be the sleep during which you experience dreams; one thing Isa tries desperately to avoid. It seemed the alcohol in her system gave her the faintest of reminders of the last time she indulged herself and the nightmare that followed was one of complete and utter torture. Her weakened body could not fight it off at first, but soon finally she awoke with a short yelp. Bolting upright, Isolde shoved the sweat-matter hair from her forehead and looked around. Where was she…oh god, she was in his bed? Not again.
She glanced down at her clothes, still on her body although highly disheveled,and uttered a sigh. There was a mirror on the other side of the room. Isa’s state could be considered treacherous. She really did look like she’d just tumbled down a mountain. Buttons unbuttons, skirt ridden up to the point of no return and hair knotted and wrapped in every which way. She looked like a commercial for the 1980s. What had she gotten herself into this time? Speaking of time…what time was it? Was it even morning. The room was dark, but she saw light peeking from behind the closed bedroom door. Had Frank slept out on the couch? Immediately Isolde felt guilt. She didn’t mean to force him out of his own bed.