Dean Allister didn't want to be polite, he didn't want to talk, he just wanted to let go. Which worked out fine, as the majority of the older crowd who passed him by tended to scowl, not smile. It had to be the mohawk. He wondered if there were support groups for the type of prejudiced 'hawked members of society faced. No, probably not. He whipped out a pen, clicked the top, and then wrote a note on the palm of his hand. Form support clinic for those with mohawks. Then, in a flash the pen was nestled back within his pocket.
His first night here had been a mess. Just the usual "my best friend might be back from the dead to haunt my soul" jazz, but to Dean, it had been terrifying. Guilt bubbled up to the surface, until it was so backed up it all had no choice to ooze out, and he'd spent the entire night a wreck, flashing back to those he loved and all of the fates they'd been destined to.
Needless to say, it was stupid and he hated it. So today, he'd woken up bright and early, and entered Feather Village, a noted "hub" of all life (according to signs and really upbeat-looking passersby.) Dean had done his best to look nice for the village. Jeans without holes, a t-shirt he'd had custom graffiti put on by a former flame, and his mohawk moussed upright, still a perfect neon orange.
And all day, he had been trying to get to know people. How they worked here. How uninhibited they were. Some women had gotten, "excuse me miss, would you like to come home with me tonight?", and though all had said no, a few looked intrigued. On his hand he'd written, not as innocent as they look. Some, however, had slapped him or tried to rip his hair out in chunks, which led to the added note, some more innocent than they should be. Mean.
Now he'd moved on, ans instead asked everyone he met for a duet. It was for a contest, he said, and whoever could sing as well as him could get a custom piece of art by the up and coming talent, Dean Allister. People weren't receptive of the contest and either scowled or cowered away, claiming to by shy. Some went as far to as to call it a dirty trick, saying he could probably sing like a greek god. Really, he was mediocre at it, and hardly competition, but he left these people stroke his ego regardless. Others pretended to know Dean Allister, famous artist, before they declined with the excuse of "larigytis," or the claim that they already had "a wall of that brilliant man's work." This made him laugh, because the only person with a thing he'd painted was Chivas, and a few walls throughout several cities he'd decided needed more color.
"Excuse me, would either of you two like to compete for a Dean Allister original? All you need to do is sing, sing! better than silly old me and you get your very own one-of-a-kind painting. One character was a woman, the other a man a few paces behind. He doubted they knew each other, but he was hoping at least one would say yes. The winner really would get a painting, but he wanted the spare change from on-lookers to afford a night in a hotel. Sleeping on benches was sarting to bug him. It sounded stupid, but you'd be amazed how much he'd made singing Ricky Martin once...
Zeke had been on his way towards the exit of the town in an effort to find this bathhouse that was supposedly located somewhere in the forest outside of the village. It was a much earlier morning that he was accustomed to but already he had visited the small cafe in town. He had also been thinking a bit about the interesting man he'd met the night before and the possibilities that meeting another person with musical talents held. Perhaps, if there were enough others he could round up, they could form a street band or something. He rather thought that would be interesting. Of course, a flute and guitar weren't much of a band combination, but he was sure it would work out.
Out of nowhere, he was approached by a rather vivid individual sporting a neon orange mohawk. This person was also talking to the woman that had been walking several paces ahead of Zeke. He hadn't been sure, but they'd been walking the same direction for some time. Perhaps she was also planning to visit somewhere outside of the village. He had been lost in his own thoughts, as per usual, and hadn't really given her presence a second thought. The strange man with the interesting hair had asked if he was interested in competing for a "Dean Allister original" whatever that was. But the contest was a singing contest, which was something that at least peaked Zeke's interest.
"What exactly is a 'Dean Allister original'?" he decided to ask, "sure I'll play along, but I have to know what I'm winning first.
Josie pushed out of the store, a scowl clouding her face. Stay calm Jo, stay calm. But like always, positive thinking was useless when Josie got into a mood like this. God, things had been so good lately too! Well if you overlooked the lack of acquaintances, the fact she was still avoiding Ariel even though she really didn't want to, and oh yes, her lack of money. Money, the whole reason she had endured coming to the marketplace.
She really was low on funds, and it seemed harder to find work anywhere else. So she had walked into that store, a confident smile on her face, hair pulled into a bun, conservative clothes and her back. And than that woman- Josie snorted, that woman, that cow more like, had just given Josie one look and shook her head. "Sorry, we're not hiring at this moment." Which was a complete lie, there was a 'help wanted' sign in the window for God's sake!
Still fuming, she barely noticed the look on people's faces as she passed. Fear, shock, general panic, these registered in her mind breifly. Were she even a tiny it less pissed she would have smiled, and tried to laugh it off. But not today, oh no not today. In the back of her mind she noticed that her furry friend wasn't by her side. The tabby cat she had found up in the mountains, the one with far too intelligent eyes who had become her shadow in the last few days. Maybe he finally left. It was strange but this didn't make her fell any better. He had grown on her, that cat, like a tumor. She sighed, her bad mood giving way to despair. She had no one to talk to, and it was only now that she realized she really wanted one.
Josie closed her eyes, her pace faltering. God she was tired. It had been, what weeks now, since she had last had a proper night sleep? She had managed to catch a few hours here and there, more from sheer exhaustion than anything else. She was getting some serious bags under her dark eyes, making her look all the more hard and sullen. Maybe she would stop by the clinic, before this turned into a full blown case of insomnia. Or maybe she could just go face the problems that were worrying her, like a grownup...no probably the clinic.
"Excuse me, would either of you two like to compete for a Dean Allister original? All you need to do is sing, sing! better than silly old me and you get your very own one-of-a-kind painting." Josie blinked and turned. Who was talking so loud? What did he- She found herself stopping when she locked eyes with the man in front of her. A confused grin spread across her face. The orange mohawk that was more artwork than hairstyle, the lip piercing, slight tummy, for a second she thought she was looking at her ex-boyfriend Mitch. Or wait was that Nick? No Nick was the one with the shaved head, actually Mike C. was shaved, Nick was... She quickly let her thoughts trail off, realizing just now what lousy taste in men she had once had.
She cocked her head to the side, folding her arms and letting her grin grown into a smirk. He had been talking to two people so who was..? She glanced over her shoulder and spotted another young man, looking a bit confused, but definitely intrigued by the idea. Josie turned back, a wild grin on her face. She grudging had to admit she was a fairly accomplished singer herself. But it was the prospect of a completion that peeked her interest. Even if it was for a...what had he called it? A Dean Allister original? She snorted. That was it? Well...still her sore mood could do with some cheering up. No better way than winning a contest.
She looked back at the man behind her and winked. "I'm in if you're in. Although," She turned back to the first man. "I'm curious too. What, pray tell, is a "Dean Allister Original"? It must be awfully exceptional," She said as she walked forward casually. "For two people to compete over." Although at this moment she would gladly fight over a used tissue, she was just in the mood for a contest. She stopped beside him, a slow grin spreading on her face. She wasn't sure of his angle, money do doubt, it was always money. Well whatever the reason, so long as he wasn't expecting money from her she was fine.