Characters: Arthur, Eames
Warnings: Language, some violence
La Vie En Rose (Continued)
Eames is twenty-nine.
As a twenty-nine year old, he lives by the motto: “What the fuck did I do with my life?”
And, as a twenty-nine year old, he answers himself with a wry laugh.
(Nothing much, really, thanks for asking.)
Word has gotten around that he may or may not be willing to ‘help’ people out.
(He’s looking into the business of making fake identification cards, in other words.)
At the moment, he’s simply creating them for lonely teenagers and underage students who want to get a drink or go to a club. He attempted to do a passport, which didn’t end as well as he’d hoped.
(He thinks he might have a scar from the broken dishes thrown at him by the angry customer when he found out Eames had spelled his name wrong.)
He really didn’t see how this was his fault; he told the customer to speak more slowly. Arse.
This doesn’t mean his revenue has diminished.
He’s back in Los Angeles after a two year vacation (of sorts) where he traveled across the world.
(The world being the eastern coast of Africa and parts of Western Europe.)
For a brief while, he was in England, again, but didn’t go visit any graves. He did say hi to his dad, however, and managed to get ahold of Amelia.
(“You’ve grown so much.”)
(“It’s good to see you, Millie.”)
(“You’re not staying,” she says knowingly.)
(“No, no I won’t be.”)
(She tilts her head. “You do have a home? Or something?”)
(“Or something.” Eames smiles. “I haven’t…I haven’t found a place to settle down, yet.”)
(“You always were a free-spirit, Eames. I sincerely hope you’re able to find something to keep you down. Someone.”)
His conversation with his dad goes more like this:
(“You need a passport.”)
(“I have one already, dad.” (He has five, actually. For safety’s sake.))
(“Come visit more often.”)
(“I will, dad.”)
California is…nice, he supposes. It’s sunny and it rains occasionally and there’s crime sprees just like everywhere else in the world. But it’s still not home.
(Nothing ever is.)
At twenty-nine, Eames starts to wonder if he truly has a home.
(He doesn’t consider himself a vagabond. He guesses restless is the best word.)
It’s not as if he hasn’t dated or slept around. He’s met plenty of women and brought them back to his apartment, along with one man. (But that wasn’t really on purpose. And there wasn’t actual penetration involved; just quick and messy handjobs where the other guy got off first and decided that was enough and left Eames lying in bed, hard as a rock.)
The stranger, bless his heart, leaves a note with what Eames assumes is his number and an asymmetrical winking face emoticon.
(How cute, Eames thinks blandly.)
Eames merely turns it over and uses the other side to write a list of things he needs from the grocery store.
He takes a bus there, and is perusing the aisles for peanut butter (and, honestly, why is it in the baking aisle? Isn’t a condiment? Bloody American shopping systems.), when he hears the soft lilt of an accented voice.
("Mon Dieu! So skinny! I can feel your bones.")
(A male voice speaks up. "Fast metabolism. I'm getting some things, now.")
("Non, non, non,” she vehemently denies. “Darling, you must eat more. J'ai été là. I've been there.")
Eames recognizes this voice. He’s sure he’s seen this woman. (He sincerely hopes it’s not someone he brought home to sleep with. It’s awkward enough casually stalking someone throughout the store without being sure if it’s a person he’s been in bed with.)
The man thanks her courteously and apologizes again.
("Non ma chérie. Come, come, come. What is your name?")
("Arthur. Are you French?")
Eames turns the corner, and yes, he’s fairly certain he knows this woman. Her name is Margerie, or Marcy or something like that.
She says yes, her name is Mallorie. But please, call her Mal.
Oh, yes. He recognizes this name, now. He assisted her husband and her with fake ID’s and is currently in the process of making a passport for him, Daniel or whatever.
(He’s curious about their need for illegal documentation, but he’s not one to question the ethics of his customers. He doesn’t want to be known as a hypocrite.)
("Venez! Come, meet my family!")
("I don't thi—")
("Mon cheri, look at what I picked up.")
("Dominick Cobb. Dom.")
Oh, that’s right.
The man (Arthur, he said his name was?) laughs.
(Eames likes this; he’s always been one to appreciate honest smiles and happiness.)
("Sweetheart, you're scaring le garcon. Souriez, l'amour. You look like you're constipated. (Eames bites back a laugh.) “James, Philippa, come out. Say hello.")
("Are you real?")
(“What’s your name?” Dom asks.)
("Un adepte de Thor," Mal answers. Dom smiles.)
("Arthur. Good to meet you. I didn't realize my wife had a brother.")
And, oh, shit. He’s eavesdropping on grown adults in the middle of a bleeding grocery store with a jar of peanut butter in his hand. If this isn’t the epitome of awkward, he’s not sure what is.
(He briefly considers buying a bottle of vodka to make him forget about his stupidity.)
Eames finishes his shopping and makes his way to the check-out aisles. He sees the young man that Mal was talking to grab his bag. He walks past Eames and…
…and Eames does a double take.
He looks sort of familiar. Like seeing someone on the streets who looks vaguely like someone in a dream, or vice versa.
(He feels he should know this person.)
He’s not a believer of fate. He doesn’t think his life is following a specific path. But he isn’t one to keep himself from figuring things out.
Now he just needs to figure out a way to introduce himself without seeming like a creep.
He pays and quickly walks after the familiar man, not sure what he’s going to say, but sure there’s something that draws him to the other.
(“Sir! Sir, you have the wrong change,” the cashier yells after him.)
He pauses in mid step, sighs, and turns back around.
(“That man, do you know who he is?”)
(“No sir,” the cashier answers. “I think I’ve only seen him come in here once. He probably shops somewhere else.”)
When he turns back around, the man is gone.
Eames is twenty-nine, and he doesn't believe in fate, but he's positive this man has some importance in his life.
And, as a twenty-nine year old, Eames thinks he might find the time to settle down.
(Africa sounds nice.)