2017-01-13 Antiquing with April
This scene is rated Everybody
Warning: N/A
2017-01-13
Players: April O'Neil, Casey Jones, Daredevil
GMed by None
Title: Antiquing with April

The door opens, and probably rings a bell as a man steps forward, though this one is blind. Some people won't understand that glasses indoors suggests blindness, and they might know that a white cane suggests blindness, but combined, and with his walking pattern, it becomes readily apparent. He taps his cane before him, navigating any of the impediments as he tries to make his way further into the store. When greeted verbally, he will make his way towards that sound. He was dressed professionally, in a nice grey suit, with pinstripes, a pink shirt, and a purple tie. His glasses though were red. Although he was evidentially blind, he did have the look of someone with a good job, like a lawyer or an executive of some description.


April was spending the late afternoon on her day off putting stuff away, groceries specifically and she'd come in through the front door of the store and left it unlocked. Coming back down stairs from the apartment above, she heard and saw the man… shit, she'd left the door unlocked.

"Hey… I'm sorry." She tells him, walking toward him with her red hair tied back behind her head and a pair of big black-rimmed glasses over her eyes. She smiled at him—until she noticed he was a blind man. "Oh, uh, hey." It made sense then, there was a big CLOSED sign in the window, but how would he know that?

"We're… not… open anymore. Not for a long time in fact." The store had been closed since her mother had passed away from Leukaemia a decade ago. "Do you need any help though…?" She asked him.


It didn't happen too often, but this time Matt Murdock's senses had let him down. He could sense the antiques in the room, but he had no idea that the store was closed, and had been closed for the better part of a decade. He could also tell that the door was unlocked, so he just went in.

He had to act fast, coming up with a reason, and unfortunately, the one he comes up with is a particularly sad one. He wasn't meaning to bring things down, but the first thought he had was that he remembered an antique store being here, before the accident. "Oh, you're not? I'm sorry, I… just remembered there being an antique's store here. Do you happen to know where they relocated?"

Since he's supposed to be blind, he shouldn't have any idea that there are still antiques here.


April hadn't ever known a blind man, she'd seen them around but she'd never just happened to… speak to one, not ever, it was kind of weird to her to realise that suddenly here and now. She walked toward him a few steps and thought to offer to shake his hand, but she wasn't sure how to do that… so she just, didn't. At his question she smiled and shook her head, just softly a little.

"This is the store." She said with a little huff of a laugh. "It's just…" She stammered in thought. "It was my mother's, Madelyn O'Neil." She drew in a breath. "She died, cancer, when I was twelve. My father never got around to re-opening the place; he didn't have the time or the heart to let it open up again. And… well, I guess I never have either. It's uh… I don't know." April looked around the place from behind her big glasses. "I guess it's exactly how it was the last day she was in here. Sort of a time capsule, or a shrine."

She looked back at Matt and couldn't help but smile even if he could see her. "Sounds weird, I know. Usually the front door is locked; I just… was moving groceries in."


Matt's face went through a host of emotions as she shared her story. He smiled when she laughed or made a joke, was sad at most of her story. And when it's done, "I'm sorry, Miss O'Neil," he's guessing that she isn't married. "Losing a loved one is never easy. I lost my mother when I was very young, and my father… a little later." He had a truly tragic back story. "But, I remember this store. My father bought a clock from it. Though, it's not as much use to me as it once was," he grinned at his own joke. Then he extended a hand to shake hers, though she'll have to meet him half way. "Where are my manners? My name is Matt Murdock. And I'm sorry to have intruded."


April heard what he said and she thought it strange how their histories seemed quite similar then, her father had died shortly after her mother as well… but she just nodded and ahh'd softly at what he said. "I'm sorry to hear that." She quietly whispered.

When he spoke about the clock, a grin faded over her lips and she leaned forward just a little toward him. "No refunds!" She said, like she was just thrilled to have thought of a silly joke at a silly moment. An exhale followed after it and her smile faded away. "I'm sorry, that was dumb…"

She quickly reached out to accept his hand with her own, she was wearing a bandage on her right hand, it was wrapped all the way around it, likely covering a palm-cut, must've been bad because her grip was almost non-existent.

"I used to sit on the counter over here and work the register for every purchase. Maybe I'm the one who sold the clock to your dad." She said with a little grin. "Funny thought, that, huh?"


Matt pretends to react shocked, "but I have the receipt… or is this toilet paper?" He even managed to reach into his pocket, grabbing a piece of paper, though the paper in his hand is actually a dry cleaning receipt. And it has some Braille paper stapled to it.

He could have had a firm grip, but he could sense her injury, and was delicate with her as they shook. "It's a small world." He still didn't have her name, as she never introduced herself. "I doubt it, but you might remember. It was a longcase clock, cherry red, with an angel carved into the pediment on one side, and a devil on the other."

It was funny, being here, that clock reminded him of his father, and he appreciated such things. He missed him so much. "I was actually hoping to get something for a friend's upcoming birthday."


April retracted her hand after doing the light shake with him and she grinned big at his receipt that he brandished. "You're good… keepin' up with my nerdy humour…" She said at him, quite amused by that. She hadn't introduced herself yet because she was a bit of a scatter-brain sometimes and it'd gotten away from her in this moment.

When he described the clock her expression went blank and then her eyes opened wide and her dark red brows lofted up. "Oh, oh yeah!" She said. "Holy moly… I used to love that clock. My mother said that the angel on it is what helped she and my dad have me." She flashed a smirk for revealing that bluntly. "Issues, you know.. uh, fertility stuff. Anyway!" She waved a hand between them dismissively trying to change the subject.

April's head started to nod, the loose strand of fire-red hair dangling down the right side of her forehead over her large framed glasses was just lightly swaying. "We had to sell it, and a bunch of the other items in here that we didn't want to, cause of… ya know, medical bills." She took a deep breath in then, those memories were hard ones to dig at.


He kept up with the jokes, being in a jovial mood, "Oh, I minored in nerdy humour, and I majored in awkwardness." He delivers it straight, as if he were conducting deposition, which only adds to the fun of it. Though he is glad when she seems to remember the clock. He smirks, trying not to laugh at her at the mention of the fertility issues. "Well, it went to a good home." At least for a while, he wanted to say, and it was part of what inspired his faith.

"Oh, I'm so sorry to hear that…" He considers the situation. "I realise that I am a perfect stranger, and I don't even know your name, but I am an attorney from Nelson and Murdock." He reaches in to his pocket, a specific pocket, finding a card which he can hold out for her to read. He assumes she isn't blind like him. And then he spreads his arms, "would you like a hug?"


April seemed surprised when he revealed himself to be a lawyer, but well, he was dressed to the nines and he was a handsome man, so upon a few seconds more of thought it all seemed to add up to her. "Gosh. I struggled in school just getting my Journalism degree. I can't even imagine what it was like getting a law degree with a visual disability." She then heard his offer for a hug and yeah, that confirmed it. "I can see that major in awkwardness shining through too though." She said with a grin at him.

"But, sure, okay." She told him and she, with card in her hand now, put her arms around him and leaned forward to hug him. "I'm April, O'Neil. Mister Murdock." And then she'd pull back and smile at him. "I work at Channel Six News, I'm the morning reporter and I do some internet work for them as well." She held his card in both of her hands and turned it around slowly while staring at it front and back.


One side was Braille, but that was just a reminder for his clients, and a way he could tell his own cards from any that might be given to him. While he couldn't read them, people did occasionally give him a card, and he would have someone else read it to him when needed. Plus, he had a device that could read text… and, he could actually read them himself when he ran his fingers over top of the ink.

He enjoyed the hug and hoped it cheered her up some. "Channel Six News? That's impressive. I imagine is must be exciting to be so close to the action. The law on the other hand, is mostly about memorisation and creative thinking. At its core, you have to know what was said before, and come up with a compelling argument of why that earlier precedent should be honoured, or ignored, depending on the intricacies of the case."

Remembering that she had groceries, he asked, "are your groceries going to thaw if left out for too long? I don't mean to keep you." He was enjoying the conversation, but he was considerate of her situation.


April smiled at his explanation about the law. "That… sounds like a lawyer if I've ever heard one." She said with a little grin and then slipped his card into the chest pocket on the pink button-up shirt she was wearing over a white t-shirt with a picture of Chewbacca on the chest.

She then glanced back over her shoulder and toward the steps where a few brown bags of groceries were. "Oh, no. It's just…" She drew in a breath and seemed to be thinking of her next words. Her eyes went back to him and she reached her injured hand up to adjust her big rimmed glasses. "I'm trying to teach some friends of mine that homemade pizza tastes better than the stuff bought in… you know, fast food places. They think I'm crazy, but… I'm going to make them the best damn pizza ever created and prove their smarmy butts wrong." She flashed a grin, but didn't let it linger, since, well, he's blind.

"So it's no bother, not like ice cream or anything."

She clapped her hands together then. "You said you were looking to buy something! I uh…can help you shop if you want? I mean, we're not really… open, but I can make an exception." She looked up at him and smiled—gosh that was a hard habit to shake.


"They have a great friend," he remarks after hearing her story of the pizza. He thinks about that for a moment, "you know, I might be able to help you with that. I'm told I have an excellent pallet, and… I actually do most of my own cooking." Despite his disability, he was rather capable.

But her talk of finding something intrigues him. "Oh, that would be wonderful. I was looking for something for a lawyer friend of mine. He's my age, and… has a working set of eyes. Is there anything you'd suggest… that isn't too personal, of course?"


Some people have enhanced hearing. Those people can tell when there's another person in a building just by picking up on the breathing or heart beat.

Some people just have regular hearing. Those people can tell when there's another person in a building just by the way that he's banging on the copper pipes in the bathroom with what sounds like… maybe a giant monkey wrench?

"Who YOU laughin' at?"

CLANG!

"I'll show you, stupid antique pipe!"
CLANG!

"When Casey Jones fixes a pipe, it STAYS fixed!"

CLANG! CRACK! PSSSST…

"Uh oh…"

The pipe really should have known better than to tangle with Casey Jones. Now it's suffering the same fate as the last lawbreaker that didn't comply with Casey's totally lawful order. It's broken, and stuff is leaking out of it. But in this case, the stuff leaking out is water.

It's only after he sees the puddle building up on the bathroom floor that Casey remembers he was supposed to 'fix' the pipe, not make it much, much worse.


April smiled at the man, she adjusted the big framed glasses that were resting on her small nose and she turned around to look at the aisles of the old store. She knew everything on every shelf, but suddenly it felt like she'd never been here before. Probably due to the thought of selling something and saying goodbye to it, and probably because she'd never helped a customer before… not in her adult years anyway.

"Oh god, okay, well…" April stepped over to a shelf and picked up a little statue of a Hawaiian girl in a grass skirt. "This maybe?" She asked. "It's not one of those hip-shaking girls, its supposed to be a place to set your coffee… Someone once told me it was from an Elvis movie, but I don't know if that's true or not. I've never seen any—" April was cut off by the banging.

Oh god, was Casey in the store's bathroom? Had the upstairs leak gone all the way down here?

April looked to Matt, and then quietly said. "I'm sorry… One second." She handed him the Hawaiian statue and turned on her booted heels to go to the door in the back of the store. Sure enough the light was on.

Putting one hand on the doorframe, April looked inside the bathroom to see where he was and what he was doing. "Oh my god, what have you been doing?" She said, trying to stay calm.


Taking the statue into his hand, Matt ran his fingers over it, getting an idea for what it was, or rather, pretending to get a sense of what it was about. He didn't show any emotion until after he had run his fingertips all over it, and then he smiled to April. He had heard the issue going on in the bathroom, but he had left it for now. It wasn't his place to interfere, and he had a cover to maintain.

Though when the noise becomes loud enough for April to leave him, Matt placed the statue down on a shelf, and made a bee line to the water valve. He continued to tap the cane, just in case she turned around to see him. He found his way towards a back room, and once there, he shut off the water at the source. He was no plumber, but he knew enough about it to at least turn off the water before trying to fix a pipe.

Afterwards, he quietly returned to his place, picked up the statue, and started heading towards April and the 'plumber'. "Is everything going all right over there?" He was a little more obvious about the cane movement as he approached.


"April!"

The look on Casey's face as he turns around is one of shock, embarrassment, and just a touch of 'kid who got caught with his hand in the cookie jar.' He's covered in water, and has taken his shirt off; trying to shove it into the hole he created just a few seconds ago. It doesn't work. At all.

Or at least it WOULDN'T work. At all. But for some reason… it starts to. The leak starts spraying less water, though it doesn't exactly stop right away. Casey takes this as a good sign.

"Nothing to worry about, babe. You just gotta whack on it enough, show it who's boss. See?"

The water becomes less of a deluge and more of a trickle. There's still standing water on the bathroom floor though, enough to make the beer cans and Luna bar wrappers float nearly an inch above the tile.

"By the way, your mom said I could help myself to your protein bars cause I'm tryin' ta cultivate mass. Also… you're outta beer, you mind picking some more up at the store real…" He stops mid-request.

As soon as he catches sight of the lawyer, Casey's caveman-like instincts begin flaring out of control. He plays it cool though. Like a gentleman.

"Who the hell is THIS guy? You ain't getting audited, are you? I told you that you shouldn't have filled out them forms. I ain't paid taxes ever, and I ain't been audited once."


April stood there mostly in shock at the condition that her bathroom was in now with floating beer cans and… all of it really. Sure she didn't really use this bathroom, ever, but it had been functioning earlier, at least she thought had been… she hadn't even come in here in a year or more.

"That's not my mother." April said to him. "That's the woman who owns the pet store next door, Casey." She glared at him. "She comes over here to use my" She cut herself off "Did it just shut itself off?" She smirked at Casey. "There's no way in hell that banging on that pipe just made it 'stop doing that'. Don't even start to pull the macho angle" And again with a cut off when Matt approached.

Stepping back, April reached up to adjust her glasses again. She heard Casey's reaction to him and she sighed and shook her head. "He's a customer." She told her. "Though I'm thinking about hiring him to sue you for what you've done to my plumbing." She smirked at them both then.

"I'm sorry, Mister Murdock." She tried to explain things. "Casey is my… friend. It's an old building and he said he could look into a few fixes for me, I guess I didn't realise that meant -smashing everything-!" She glared back at Casey then.

"You know the guys are coming over for pizza tonight, right?" She told the long haired plumber man, and then looked back to Matt. "This is yet another reason why the antique shop has been closed for a decade… I'd probably run it into the ground if I tried to re-open it." She smiled a little.


There was a little bit of soot on the handle that Matt turned to close the valve, and he still had some on his right hand. He rubbed it between his fingertips as he was greeted with a 'who the hell is this guy'. He could have embarrassed Casey right there and then, but he was an actual gentleman.

He reached into his pocket, pulling out a handkerchief, so that he could clean the soot off his hand, and he did it in a way that would appeal as just good cleanliness. He reached out a hand in Casey's general direction, "oh no, I'm not here for an audit, though I am a lawyer. Matt Murdock. It's a pleasure to meet you, Mister…?"

Turning to April, well, to 'face' in the general direction of where she last spoke from, he adds, "please, call me Matt." When April seems to have caught onto what he did, he tries not to react, but there's a sheepish smile that comes over his face, almost as if a private joke. But he can't confirm what he did to help out.

"I can't speak for the work done, but if you do need a plumber, Mario Brothers Plumbing owes me a favour. If you'd like, feel free to call them and tell them that if they help you, I said we're even." He had helped them with some legal trouble, and they were down on their luck at the time, so he took payment in credits towards future issues, such as this.

As the plumbing at his office and both his and his partner's apartments were fine, this was probably the last opportunity he'd have to call in this particular favour for some time.


"THAT explains why she kept lurking in here. She wanted to drop a deuce! I thought she just wanted a piece of the Ol' Case, you knowuddimsayin?"

Casey looks back and forth from Matt to April, to make sure that they got what he was saying. "You know, I thought she wanted to have sex with me. But… she just wanted to crap. In here. Shit, I wonder where she ended up going…"

Casey looks off into the distance, as if trying to remember which way the old lady went when she finally left him alone.

TWO HOURS AGO…

"You gonna be working in here much longer? April leaves me the key so that I can…"

"Dayum, Misses O'Neil! What's that smell? Izzat you? Somebody's baking brownies up in here, knowuddimsayin?"

"I'm NOT her mom!"

NOW…

Casey's so lost in thought that he doesn't see Matt's extended hand at first. It might seem rude, or possibly ironic, but he eventually notices what's going on and accepts the handshake. His hands are way less clean than Matt's, and soaking wet.

"Oh. Right. I'm Casey Jones. You probably remember me from when I played hockey, but these days I fight crime. Somebody's gotta do it, what with you scumbag lawyer types letting all the lawbreakers slip through the system. And… Enron…"

Casey has just recited everything he knows about the criminal justice system. It took him one sentence, and one sentence fragment.


April didn't have any super powers, of any kind… she once tried to jump off a stack of hay bales at her parent's farm in Pennsylvania and ended up in the hospital later that evening and with a cast on her arm the rest of her 7th year summer break. So she definitely knew she couldn't fly, for example.

But one thing April O'Neil was good at was observation. She observed Matt cleaning his hand, then noticed the smudge on his suit jacket sleeve and then realised that the water had shut off so suddenly. She looked up at him and stared a bit more closely at his face… investigating him som—

What the hell did Casey just say?

Quickly, April looked back at her 'friend' and she reached over and knocked his hand back from shaking Matt's and then grabbed the door to the bathroom and pulled it shut. "Stay in there, where you belong!" She shouted through it at him. "Maybe put that bar of Irish Spring in your mouth too, you goon!"

With a heavy sigh, April looked back to Matt and stammered. "I- I'm sorry, he's as educated as he is clean. I'm April, by the way, I don't think I even said that up to this point." With another huff she walked back toward the front of the store where the old (empty) cash register was. "If you don't want to buy anything now, I understand entirely, Matt." She said while walking.


Casey was a little cruder than Matt was used to, but he wasn't offended by the man. In fact, he respected him. Like the song says, it takes a man to suffer ignorance and smile. Plus, while he could have used better language, he did seem to belatedly understand the nature of the situation.

Matt said, "it's nice to meet you, Casey Jones," and probably to April's surprise, even set a business card down onto the currently dry countertop after Casey made the crack about scumbag lawyers. "I'm afraid I don't know much about hockey. I was always more of a soccer fan myself, before, well, this." And he gestured towards the red glasses.

He was pretty sure that April was on to him, or at least suspected, and when she knocked him back and closed the door, he couldn't help but grin. She was a woman of action. He liked that. "Irish Spring? I actually use that myself, though, I prefer the exfoliating gel to bars of soap."

Placing a hand up to tell her to stop as she tries to apologise for Casey, "no need to worry, April. And I would still like to buy something, if you're willing to part with anything. I know how you might be sentimental to this stock. And I did mean it, about my plumber friend. Just call them. They'll get it sorted to."


"Ey… whaddido?"

SLAM!

From behind the now closed door, Casey's slightly muffled voice can still be heard. "Okay… uh… I'll just finish fixing this while I wait on that beer…"

There's a sheepish tone to Casey's voice, discernible even through the old wooden door. He knows he's 'in trouble', he just isn't entirely sure what for. Probably for talking about April's mom or something. Who can tell though? Women, right?

He goes back to diagnosing the problem. Turning on the faucet, he sees a short spurt of water followed by nothing. That means… something. Right?

Muttering to himself, Casey sounds a bit wounded, a bit embittered, but mostly just perplexed. "Pipes must be clogged or something. Maybe she SHOULD call a plumber, I got better things to do with my time anyway. Friggin' lawyer. I coulda been a lawyer too, if I wasn't so good at hockey and fixing stuff."


April reached the front of the aisle not far from the register, and she stopped and turned back to Matt then. "So what kinds of things does your friend like?" She asked him then. "Or what kinds of things does he need? We have… I don't know, big and small… from knick-knacks for an office desk to full blown furniture pieces back there in the corner." She pointed to a whole row of bookshelves, desks, drawer/cabinets— and then realised she was pointing for a blind man.

April dropped her arm to her side and she huffed out an exhale. She could hear Casey talking to himself in the bathroom, but couldn't hear exactly what he was saying. She heard 'beer' though and it made her shout back at him, not angrily… just loud enough to go through the door. "The beers are in Manhattan at my new apartment. Which there's no way in -Hell- I'm telling you how to find!" She used the word hell for a very specific reason, the irony, and because it felt good to cuss at Casey sometimes.

Sure, the big lug had helped save the day against the Shredder several weeks ago… but he just had this way about him to get right under her skin. She also enjoyed him being around too, though she'd rarely admit it.

The young reporter smiled at Matt then. "This has been the weirdest thing you've probably ever stumbled into, huh? You can see why I usually keep the door locked now?" She grinned a little.


Matt Murdock could hear every word coming from the bathroom, but he wasn't really focusing on that. Still, it did make him smile. Thankfully, April was giving him other reasons to smile, so at least it appeared to be prompted by her. "My office is in Manhattan, well, Hell's Kitchen…" He seems almost sheepish as he admits that. "It has its faults, but its home."

He didn't look at the objects she pointed to, instead just 'looking' in her direction. "My business partner is in his mid twenties, originally from New York, he's a lawyer, I don't really know his style, but he wears bowties, and he's adorable. He also snores like a foghorn, hence the nickname, Foggy. We met while at university. I said he snored like a fog horn, and it's stuck."

"He could really go for anything, from a desk, to letter opener. But it would be nice if it were something that were functional rather than decorative."


April heard Matt's rough descriptor as to where his offices are and she flashed a smile at him. "Oh, hey, that's where my new apartment is. Maybe we're neighbours?" She reached out and patted his arm softly once then before hearing the explanation in-regards to Foggy's persona. That too made her smile, because she could tell that Matt really cared for his friend, which was endearing.

"That nickname is too cute." April said then, moving toward one of the shelves in the store.

"I uh…" She glanced around the shelf then. "I got a small statue of Foghorn Leghorn around here somewhere… I don't think I have any actually foghorns themselves… Casey probably would've found it by now and used up all its compressed air." She said with a small smirk.

"Oh!" She picked up a decretive piece then. "I have a lighthouse… it has a little light that spins around slowly and it has a small house sitting beneath it where I always imagined some lonely little man lived, forlorn over his life." She stared at it a moment, thinking about the item and how many times she'd watched it when she was little.

April glanced at Matt then. "Its… fog, related." She exhaled sharply a little laugh. "I'm terrible at this." Was quietly muttered moments later then.


Matt really did care for Foggy. He was closer than a partner, he was like a brother. In fact, he was the closest thing he had to family in this world. He was surprised to learn that her new apartment was in Hell's Kitchen. "Really? Our offices are at 448 West 48th Street, and my apartment is 605 West 42nd Street."

He gave her a card, so she already knew where his office was, or would with a quick look at it, and there was no harm in letting her know which apartment building he lived in. Plus, he felt a connection with her that made him a little more eager to share. He wasn't sure what it was, but she was very kind and seemed to have a similar history to his own.

"Foggy is too cute… I think he's what people describe as 'adorkable'. But he's great." He wondered if Foggy would like April? Maybe he could try and set them up. But those thoughts are left for the moment as he listens to her talk about antiques.

"A statue of Foghorn Leghorn might be fun." He remembered the Looney Tunes character from before his accident. "It would make the origin of his nickname an even more private joke if he had that around, a bit of misdirection there."

He could tell the lighthouse meant something to her, from her physiological responses. "April, you are already better than you know," he reached out to place an arm on her own arm, hoping it would be seen as comforting, "but it sounds like that lighthouse may have a little more sentimental value to you than you realise."


April smiled at him when he put his hand on her arm. She didn't find it weird because he had a comforting air about him; he was like a warm summer night. She liked that. Plus, blind people weren't all that intimidating (most of the time), at least not ones dressed as nicely and as handsome as him.

"Oh… I just… have stared at this stuff for so long now." She told him, setting the lighthouse piece back down on the shelf. "I moved back in here when I was eighteen and prepping for college, so for the past… five years now, I've been coming down here to do my homework every few nights, or just walking around and observing things while I try to clear my mind." She grinned a little. "This place has just become, like I said earlier I guess, a shrine."


Matt Murdock knows all about shrines to the dearly departed. He still has a coat that smells exactly like his father, Jack Murdock. He has to keep it in a box in the attic of his apartment. If he smells it, up close, it's like his father is there with him… just for a moment.

"I have another idea. How about we put the lighthouse, the Foghorn Leghorn, and the statue of the Hawaiian girl, back where we found them, well, you do. And instead of taking anything out of this shrine, you come with me to find something for Foggy. I could use the help, I think you have a good eye for it, and I'd even pay you for your assistance. Call it a donation to the shrine, or your college tuition, whatever you like, but I could use your help, and I don't want to take anything that would mean so much to you."

His hand was still on her arm, and it was at that point that he pulled back. It was a habit for him to grab other people's arms, mostly when offered, and he just didn't want to let go of hers. He could feel her pulse and he had liked it. He smiled, "maybe we could have lunch afterwards?"

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