velesdonnersen: (Default)
[Tarvek gets to the Bakery first. He's so excited: he's going to get to meet a real, entirely sentient, self-willed Muse! Eeeeeeeee!]

[He orders a cup of coffee and waits, hoping Ilsa arrives first, so that Dakki Sigal is comfortable when she gets here.
velesdonnersen: (Default)
[Tarvek dozes beside Ilsa, on the sofa bed in the home office. She's back, and there's little that makes him even one tenth so happy... The blankets are piled high, pillows are tucked around them, and he can lie half-dozing, watching her through the veil of half-lowered lashes.]

velesdonnersen: (Default)
[As usual, if it weren't for the crazy elements, Tarvek could just curl up and adore Mayfield.  Now, he's invited Ilsa out. He's wearing his best suit, and he's taking a Mayfield Risk: he's taking her to dinner, and to a restaurant afterward.]

[He intends it be the best Mayfield has to offer.  Granted, in Mayfield that means a limited number of options. Decent steak, decent shrimp cocktail, passable but uninspired Lobster, and probably one decent French restaurant... decent, but with a very limited set of choices.  Count boeuf Bourguignon, escargot, French onion soup, something flambe, and not a lot else. But there's soft music, there are candles, and he's dressed to impress. He works at all the niceties; draws out her seat for her, tests the wine, does what little a poor Europan prince can to turn a mediocre meal into a feast through clever suggestions and requests.  Through it all his eyes shine.  He's back with his beloved, and she remembers him.]

It's good to be home, leibchen.
velesdonnersen: (Default)
[Verdammt, what a dream.  That's the first thing he thinks as he wakes up.  Even waking, it makes his skin crawl -- and his temper blaze.  Verdammt.  Fire and hail.  What in the name of the spark itself made him say he'd die if it was needed?  He rises, stretches, and tries to scrub the eerie sense of displacement from his skin and scalp.  He didn't feel this twitchy when Mayfield brought him through, or on waking from the several deaths the town has handed him.  He gets up, barely noticing the reliable sounds of Not!Luka!Anymore making breakfast, and Catherine and Perry preparing for school. He shucks out of his Mayfield-proper pajamas, takes a shower that doesn't seem to wash away the uneasy twitchiness. He brushes his teeth, shaves, and dresses for the day in a nice suit.  He wants to stop by Ilsa's on the way to work this morning.  He needs the reassurance she provides: the sense that he has a place in the universe, and a heart that welcomes him. He ambles down, grabs toast, a strip of bacon, and a glass of orange juice, then calls good-bye to his not!family, suddenly hungry for non-drone society.]

Action, arriving at Ilsa's, 1490 Kramden.

[Tarvek knocks on the door, and hunches into his very nice woolen coat: a proper lawyer's deep gray, tailored overcoat. He shoves his hands in his pockets and pulls his neck down like a turtle, hiding as much of his skin as he can in his cozy wool scarf. His fedora sits neatly on his head.  He dearly wants a cup of coffee and a warm hug from his liebe Ilsa. He'd even accept a friendly grunt from Egon, and a nod from the new not!child.]

Guten Morgen, Liebe!  It's cold out here.  Let a poor lost prince in, for the sake of the spark.
velesdonnersen: (Sadness)
[He's been worried all day, knowing they've messed things up with Egon, knowing how upset Ilsa is.  He hasn't got her ability to sense feelings, but over time he's begun to pick up her backwash --- her projects have been getting more and more difficult to block out of his awareness.  Today he's been driven half-mad by her misery and guilt.  In return he's been fighting not to pound her with his annoyance at Egon...or his deep sense that Ilsa has nothing to apologize for. Then, late in the day, he feels her feelings spike, hard and unhappy.]

[So he's not exactly surprised when he hears the knock at the door, or senses the hungry need for support. He prowls out of his den, sends Catherine and Perry out to play in the backyard, asks Not!Luka to brew some coffee, and invites "Mrs. Spengler" in.]

Ilsa? Come in, schatzi.  Melusine will be bringing coffee and cookies in just a moment, and we can talk in my den.
velesdonnersen: (Default)
[Tarvek has watched the amazing parade of people marching through Ilsa's house, eating her food, chatting with her.  She's such a well-loved lady, with so many friends.  He considers her queenly, regal, a hostess and a sheltering friend.]

[He helps her clean up, after people go, putting leftovers-- what few there are-- into the strange plastic storage containers. (He "burps" them, just as she taught him.  He always laughs when he does it.]  They wipe the counters, prepare things for tomorrow's meals.  When they've finished... there's no sign of Egon. He looks at Ilsa, and says, softly,]

Do you want to go for a drive?  It's been a hard day.
velesdonnersen: (Default)
Tarvek made it through the madness of the last few events.  He's recognized that his former not!wife has been droned -- a grief in its own right, as "Betty" is not returned, but Megurine Luka is so very clearly gone, wandering merrily through Betty's activities without notice of the shift.  He's coped with Halloween, he's grown his friendship circle a little.

But he's still living as barely more than a talented Minion. So it's a matter of stunning excitement when he goes out to his mailbox, and finds another small cardboard carton. He rips it open, fingernails tearing at the sticky tape so common in Mayfield, and....

Yes.  Yes!  Another spark plug, resting heavily in the palm of his hand.  He races in, slips the plug into a drawer of his home-office desk, and stretches his mind, running gears and cogs through his thoughts.

Nothing.  Nothing?

He feels a moment of panic.  Maybe... maybe it's just a signal of him getting back something small, like his proper pince nez?  But, no: he simply got the pince nez, not a spark plug.  The only time he's gotten a spark plug, it heralded the return of spark.

He's hesitant, now.  Something has apparently been returned to him... but he's unsure what.

Time will tell.

He frowns, and putters to the office for the day, planning on returning to Ilsa's place for dinner, now that poor Pyro has been droned.  It's nice to play house with Ilsa, and be both her Alpha and her "husband" -- in imagination, if not in Mayfield law.
velesdonnersen: (Wabbits)
[Tarvek has not had Maine Lobster, but by GOD the boy has had Parisian homard, and he knows dinner when it comes creeping through town.  Giant crabs, giant lobsters... he even thinks he sees a few giant clams. (Clams got legs!) Seeing them, he knows just what to do.]

[He immediately starts putting together the Giant Lobster Pot, gets out the self-adapted Elephant Gun, and then gets on the phone.]


Ilsa! Stoke up the backyard grill and start melting butter!  Nall, wanna help me with a bit of seafood hunting?  Everyone else, the thing to do with Giant Seafood is have a Giant Seafood Party.


[He goes out to hunt him some verdammt lobster and super-giant-irradiated King Crab.]
velesdonnersen: (HappyCute)
[Tarvek has been busy-busy-busy making costumes.  He's got one for Ilsa, a beautiful knight's armor, weapons and accessories for Nall, and he's working on his own costume, chuckling over the details.]

[The house is now occupied once more by drones and Tarvek, and he's taken advantage to convert every bit of space he can reasonably ransack to his work, but the main costume shop is in the garage.  He's taken over the drone Betty-Luka's sewing machine, her iron and ironing board, he's usurped her laundry area.  He's got dummies he's constructed all over the place.

Today he's sitting cross-legged on his own workbench, tailor-fashion, as he carefully creates the graceful curve of a coat lapel for himself.]

[He's expecting Ilsa, and possibly Nall to come on over and see what he's up to.]
velesdonnersen: (Madboy-glee)
Ilsa told me about this "Halloween" thing, and I'm just... I mean... it's awesome! [He's all giddy, in need of some fun.]  I was thinking we could get together, plan out costumes, and I could design.  But I need some help -- there are supposed to be devices for sewing, and there must be sources for fabrics and makeup, and I'll need some shop assistants, if we're going to really put on a show.

So -- I've cleared out space in the garage, and we can work there and set up a shop.  Come on over!  Bring food: all I've got is Mayfield standard, here....
velesdonnersen: (Default)
[Tarvek had been at Ilsa's Place, helping build armaments, but it occured to him he had to check on the drone-children and his not!wife, at home... and, ideally, pick up some more tools and equipment from his garage.]

[Perry and Catherine, the dronelings, are fine.  Just fine.  Lying on their little tummies, watchin' the good ol' TV, gnawing on a couple of red, gory...]

[Ngggg.  Not so fine.  No-no.  Not at all, not at all: Tarvek races frantically to the garage with sweet little Perry and darling Catherine racing behind him shouting 'BRAINZZZZZZZ.' At the moment Tarvek is not sure he qualifies as having any at all!  He darts to the garage, and proceeds to bolt it shut, shoving the entire washing machine in front of the padlocked door.  He checks the rest of the garage carefully: no further zombies in sight.]

[It takes him about two hours to thoroughly glean useful stuff from the garage.  He loads it carefully into the family sedan, then climbs in himself, locks all the doors -- and goes to sleep.  He's not an idiot, and he knows he works better awake and aware...and he's been up too long.  He's as safe as he's likely to get here, double-locked into a secure space, with the second safe-hole being on wheels.]

[Only after a good nap does he click the wonderful Power Garage Door Opener he's been tinkering with ever since beginning to get his Skilz Back, and goes charging through town toward Ilsa's.]
velesdonnersen: (Default)
[Tarvek is a weekend sight to see: he ambles from the house in neat chinos, with a short sleeved, blue-checked  oxford style sport shirt, with a pair of docksiders on his feet.  In his own opinion the only off-element would be the ugly glasses. Poor boy.  Such a blow to his amour propre. ]

[He waves to neighbors, considers the state of the grass (needs mowing, must ask Perry to do that chore for fifty cents), admires his convertible, and arrives at the mailbox.  Inside there is a small, slim box, longer than it is wide.   He is now enough of a Mayfield resident that his heartbeat picks up.  There was day when Ilsa was kill-droned... It would make sense for him to get a little "present' from Mayfield, now.]

[His hands tremble slightly, as he peels the celophane tape back with one thumbnail. Fearing to look, he slips a finger in, finding a piece of paper, first.  He draws it out. On the paper is printed, carefully, what he is just spark enough to see first as an infinity symbol.  Then his breath catches, and he can't bear it any more.  He shakes the contents out onto his palm.]

[The pince-nez, HIS pince-nez, glitter in the bright, eternal Mayfield sunshine. To his surprise and dismay, he finds he's almost crying.  More than anything so far, this gift shakes him up, forcing homesickness on him, making him aware that, for all the terrible things he doesn't miss, he does still miss HOME. And, yet, at the same time, they make him feel like himself again.  With great dignity he slips his horn rims from his face, folds them, and tucks them in the breast pocket of his shirt. (He knows a wise man is never without spare glasses.) He puts on the pince-nez.... Then he races inside, and picks up the phone.]


Ilsa?  Ilsa, can I come over?  Please?  I... I want to see you.

Regain 1

Jul. 24th, 2011 02:20 pm
velesdonnersen: (Madboy-glee)
 Tarvek goes to mailbox, mind really not on much of anything but the nights spent sleeping next to Ilsa...and the conundrum of Mayfield.  He flips the lid open, reaches in...

...and removes a small cardboard box.  He frowns, and cautiously, warily opens it.

Nestled in a handful of packing tissue, he finds a clean, new, neat little bit of a machine.  He frowns harder, trying to decide if he knows what it is.  He's sure he knows something about it.  It's nothing from Europa: he knows that much.  At least, not as designed, and, yet... it's... there's something...
He reviews old machines and new, finally settling on the machines he's encountered in Mayfield.  With his spark gone, he's had far too limited exposure, but he's fought hard to at least understand His Wonderful Car. And it's here that it occurs to him what he's holding: a spark plug.
A Spark Plug -- and he's spent the last ten minutes thinking about machines, and not suffered one headache!  He gives a whoop, and jigs about in the yard.
An hour later he's less delighted, but still smiling.  He hasn't got the ability to do the extraordinary back, yet. But he can now open the hood of the car, know what's in it, and work with the engine without a single flicker of pain, or moment of confusion.
velesdonnersen: (Default)

[Tarvek has been shifting in and out of his own memories all day, alternating between an uneasy but convinced native Mayfield POV, and a frantic, panic-stricken Europan Spark-Prince convinced he's being mind-controled: which, of course, he is. He's seen Ilsa, but failed to accomplish much.  He's taken part in baseball, sack races, picnic with potato salad and fried chicken.  Now dusk is falling, and while the big show has yet to begin, dozens of daredevil little Mayfield scamps are already beginning to "light up."  Firecrackers, that is.]
[Tarvek, leaning against a big maple tree in the park, hears a muttering, raucous, edgy burst of laughter near the hedge line at one side of the parking area... the sound of adolescent boys who are about to cross a line they know they shouldn't.  After all, this is Mayfield, and boys will be boys.  The Mayfield father in Tarvek knows, just as surely, that it's time to serve as a role model to Mayfield youth, for Father Knows Best.] 
[Excusing himself from his wife and children, he rises and followed the whoops and chortling, only to find a small cat backed up against the impenetrable wall of the fence, scared as a gang of boys reach and grab.  Some have firecrackers, and some have string, and still others have matches, and all are planning how to tie the firecrackers to the cat and set them off.]
[Reality once more crawls for Tarvek. His eyes see two things -- a small, helpless cat, and an equally small, helpless Nall-the-not-cat, his draconic friend.  Both Mayfield Tarvek and Europan Tarvek, however, know what to do.  With a firm, certain shout he calls the boys to order, striding forward through their gathered ranks, grabbing the little cat by the scruff and quickly wrapping it in a confining but gentle hug.]
"Boys, that's not how we do things.  Not here in America, and not in Mayfield.  This great country of ours was founded on principles intended to protect the weak from the strong, to give rights to those cast aside, to defend the liberty of all.  We are a nation of protectors and defenders, and so shall it ever be."
[He staggers out, cat still held firm to his chest, unsure of himself.  He's Europan Tarvek again, for one moment, stroking Nall-not-cat, swearing because the stupid town is both the beautiful dream he just described, and the hell-hole that has trapped him, trapped Nall, and set the boys loose with their firecrackers.  Tarvek yearns for the dream -- and more and more sees the bitter nightmare, too.]
[How is he to deal with both?  He doesn't know.  So he holds the cat, which his Mayfield self has now decided is his cat, his family pet, their dear little Nall-cat.  He will hold Nall and protect him through the evening and the fireworks to come, and at the end he will bring him home and let him sleep safe, curled on the sofa in the home office where once the same Nall-cat lay dead with Dead-Ilsa.]
[Maybe, in the morning, it will make sense to all of them.]
velesdonnersen: (Default)
 Tarvek wakes on the Fourth of July, a date that means only slightly more than nothing to him -- and that only because he's been told of it.  Except today?  Today, he knows what the Fourth of July Means To Him, because He is a Patriotic American! (And let's ignore the faint Romanian accent, shall we?  He will, today.  Some of today. The parts where he's entirely convinced he's a native of Mayfield and These United States.)

He wakes as he does every day, and goes down to breakfast, as prepared by his darling wife, Betty.  As he sits at the table listening to the chatter of dear Catherine and Perry, he frowns, slightly.

Something.... something is wrong.  Wrong...

No.  Of course nothing is wrong!  What could be wrong?  It's a holiday, he's free from his legal work for now.  Later today he'll take the family to see the parade and then go to the big Fourth of July Picnic.  There will be games, and later fireworks.  Right now, what he must do is tell the kids about the importance of the Signing of the Declaration of Independence, and the value of freedom.
Wrong. Something is wrong. Wrong... not freedom.
This is not freedom.
Betty smiles, and fills his coffee cup, and in his mind he sees two figure: one, his dear wife, Betty.  Childhood sweetheart, date at the senior prom, first and only girl he ever kissed.  But behind that image, is someone else... Lola?  Lottie?  No.  Luka.  Luka is a...Luka isn't...
(Gone, part of his mind says. The Betty is gone:  Mayfield took her away when it brought in Luka.  You mourned for her.  The Betty is gone...)
His hand trembles as he picks up the coffee cup, and scalding coffee slops over his hand and wrist.  He mutters, careful not to swear in front of his wife and children.  His heart is racing, and he can't quite explain why.  Part of him is terrified, and he can't articulate that, even to himself.  Instead he continues to sit in his place, sip his coffee, talk to his wife and children, preaching on and on about freedom...
He isn't free.  He knows he isn't free.  He shivers, and finishes his breakfast: sausages, eggs, toast, juice, a half a grapefruit on the side.  He excuses himself, and retreats to his office, still shaking.
In the silence of the little home office, he battles for his memories.
He's Tarvek -- Tarvek Sturmvoraus.  That much he is sure of, regardless of what's happening. But beyond that, he can now sort out two sets of memories: one, like a flat, bright advertisement, gives him a broad, bold picture of his life in Mayfield: childhood, youth, early adulthood.  Schools and parties, dates and dances, marriage and the birth of his children.  The slow building of the life of a respectable professional in  a small American town.
But far more vivid, shot with passion and pain, hope and loss, are memories so unAmerican, so unlike Mayfield, they are like acid contrasted with sugar.
He is Prince Tarvek Sturmvoraus, of Sturmhalten: a spark, a royal, a trained assassin and a spy and covert agent by necessity.  He's fallen in love more than once -- and even here, in Mayfield, he's got an old love who has disowned him, and a new one who seems to embrace him. He is not who Mayfield says he is.
He has lived his whole life in fear of the many ways his own world can steal his mind and his will.  From the Summoning Engines his father was fixated on, to the wasps that ripped his world apart; from Klaus Wulfenbach's "economical" use of former enemies as brain-core guinea pigs to the Order's careful mind controls, he's always known there were people who would wish to possess and control his mind... and that they had the ability to do it.  Few threats have so motivated him to lead the cautious, secretive, defensive life he created to protect himself.  Being under Mayfield's thrall, half-droned, is as terrifying to him as being bound and nailed into a coffin would be to a claustrophobic.  In some corner of his skull his mind screams and thrashes, panicked.
Mayfield, however, does not care, and has no room for panic.
So Tarvek STurmvoraus, lawyer of Mayfield, returns from his office and prepares for a day celebrating the great and glorious value of freedom.
The irony would appeal to his more-real self, if his more-real self were not terrified beyond belief.

velesdonnersen: (Default)
 [Phone Call, Locked to the DA]

[Tarvek is finally beginning to get angry.  He's not a fast fury sort, and he's surprisingly peaceful given a chance, but he's got two dead friends laid out on his home-office sofa, and he's waiting to see if Mayfield has the grace to give them back now that it's had it's fun.  He's the sort of fellow who wants answers -- and he can't think of a better place to go than the DA...]

Harry, and the rest of you....

I'm still not sure Mayfield itself is evil, but I am past angry with how things work out here.  This shouldn't have led to a bloodbath.

What do people know about why folks here in Mayfield play along?  We've got groups like the DA, but what good is that if, as soon as the town goes crazy, half of us are going to go along with it?  Something...

Something a friend of mine said, just before she died in this last round makes me think she was afraid people she loved from home would be pulled to Mayfield if she didn't cooperate.  Did any of the rest of you get threats to people you love?
velesdonnersen: (Sadness)
 [Tarvek has found Ilsa, before her death.  He was there for her.  Now, he's placed her body in the passenger seat of his convertible, laid her out as well as he can, and he's preparing to track back along Bilko Boulevard, then make his way to his home, 1126 Taylor Road.  He's been crying, but right now he's in a sort of cold, sad and angry place of mind.]

[As he cruises, slowly, a flash of white and red and wing catches his eye.  He pulls over, this time being very careful to take his time and park properly at the curb: if he isn't careful Ilsa's quickly cooling body may slip from it's current placid position, and then she could go into rigor mortis in an ugly, humiliating shape.  He doesn't want that for her.]

[Once he's parked, he slips from the driver's seat, out onto the street.  He walks around.  Under a big, green Mayfield tree, he finds the remains of one of his comparatively few other friends in Mayfield: Nall, the dragon who looks like a cat. Tarvek squats, and looks at the bloody, shattered mess.]

Damn it, Nall.  You're little and fast, and you can keep out of trouble if you want to.  Fire-and-hail.

[He sighs, and his head droops for a moment.  He sets his jaw, and slips out of his nice, tailored jacket.  Working carefully he eases Nall's body onto the silk lining.  Nall, small thing that he is, has already been through cooling, rigor mortis, and he's beginning to relax again.  Tarvek carefully tucks the dragon-cat's wings around him, and wraps him in the jacket. He puts the little bundle on Ilsa's lap, gets back in the car, and drives home.]

[Megurine, his not-wife, isn' t home, and hasn't been all day.  He's worried for her, but is relieved to find the children calmly playing in the back yard.  It's hard for him to believe that they just don't notice the mayhem... but they don't.  They exist in the perfect, unshaken life of Mayfield as they believe it to be.  He takes the time to wash his hands and make them bologna sandwiches and Kool-Aid, which he carries out to the backyard picnic table.  He tells the kids he'll be in his in-house office, and not to come in.]

[Then, knowing they will leave him in peace, he removes Ilsa and Nall from the car (along with Ilsa's purse), and carries them to the office.  He carefully lays Ilsa out on the Danish-style sofa, there, wrapping her carefully in an afghan, with her hands folded at her breast and her purse tucked beside her, against the back cushions. He puts the small bundle that is Nall on her lap.  Then he goes to the kitchen, finds a bottle of Johnny Walker and a glass, and returns to the office.  He pours himself a shot, and settles into his office chair, which he swivels so that he can see his friends. He raises the shot-glass.]

To unexpected loves, in unpredictable places.

[He sips, cautiously.  Ilsa's comments about self-medicating haven't escaped him entirely... and he's not stupid enough to think things are going to get any better if he becomes an alcoholic here.]
Red and blue lightening.  Mayfield better send you both back.
[He leans over and starts ruffling through the notes he's been keeping.  According to the notes, these two should disappear at midnight -- but he's willing to accept that it may be longer.  He just hopes they do disappear.  He's not ready to start saying permanent goodbyes to his friends: he's lost enough already.  And where's he going to put them, anyway?  His flower beds?]
Come back, friends.  I'll wait for you.
[He then does the proper thing at a wake, and remembers, with great fondness, the pleasure he's had finding friends who talk to him, and listen, and to whom he's nothing but just Tarvek. He still doesn't hate Mayfield, but he hates-hates-hates how people end up functioning here.  He's beginning to get pissed... and not on Johnny Walker.]

velesdonnersen: (Sadness)
 [The doghouse in the backyard of 1126 Taylor Road is turning into Tarvek's personal little corner.  He sits on the roof, with just enough shade from a shade tree, and just enough sun, and the doghouse has a flat peak, so he can sit comfortably cross-legged. He's there, today, far more sober than he's been in awhile, in more senses than one.]

[The kids run back and forth, as usual.  Tarvek's got Perry mowing the lawn again.  Catherine's been on the swings, and then jumped rope for awhile, and then she sat on Tarvek's lap for a bit, and now she's kneeling on the patio drawing with sidewalk chalks, because "Daddy" is up on the doghouse roof drawing himself.  He's working in a soft drawing pencils -- wide, flat-leaded ones, slim ones with well-sharpened points.  He's drawn the children.  He's got a good eye and hand: he trained as a draftsman, of course.  Most sparks do.  But he's also semi-canonically an actual artist, both sculpture and painting. His drawings of the kids seem to race across the pages of his notebook.]

[But the big picture he's drawing is of someone who is no longer there, and who no longer exists.  She's a bland, gentle-faced, vacuous blonde with a pretty smile, a perky nose, a classic 50s wave perm, and a dress that's trim to her upper body, but floofy around the hips and legs: all petticoats and floral print.  He's drawn her as though she's just beginning to turn to leave, raising one hand to wave as she goes.]
[Her name was Betty.  She was his drone wife.  He wasn't in love with her, but he found her gentle, silly, sweet, well-intentioned, and likable.  Like all drones replaced by "real" people, she's disappeared without a trace.  Not even her photos in the house remain.  Her children don't remember her.  There's no sign in all of Mayfield she ever lived. Tarvek and his quick little pencils are trying to remedy that.]
You are walking, flying, etc. You see Tarvek, sitting on his doghouse, drawing soberly.  His kids bustle around the back yard.  Inside you can hear someone new, singing beautifully.  Tarvek looks up from his work, sees you, and waves, calling to you in friendship, whether you're a stranger or an associate.
What do you do?
velesdonnersen: (HappyCute)
[Tarvek Knows Nothing of Mother's Day.  Waking up, he cheerfully showers, dresses, and proceeds to putter, failing to notice for the longest time that his drone wife, The Betty, is huddled in bed, pouting.  Indeed, he himself never notices.]

[Instead he feels a tug at his sleeve.  It's Catherine, his drone daughter (approx. 5), who had red hair and horn-rims, just like Tarvek.]

Daddy? It's Mother's Day!

 Huh?  [Tarvek blinks]  What?

'It's Mother's Day! We're supposed be really nice to Mommy today.

We?  [Quite clueless.]

We're supposed to make her breakfuss, and sing for her, and give her cards, and presents, and it's supposed to be all nice and her day.  Isn't it, Perry?
[Perry is the older boy -- technically too old to be Tarvek's, but Tarvek's not fussy.  The kid's about 14, gangly, gawky, with more red hair and horn-rims.  He's too willing to do chores!]
Yeah, Dad.  We're supposed to be all, like, really nice to her, and do what she wants, and make her happy.
[Tarvek is deeply bewildered, now.  If nothing else, The Betty is reliably, disturbingly happy, except when she's the sort of campy irked that belongs in the old sitcoms Tarvek has never seen.  She does things like send him to the dog house for forgetting to call home late for dinner.]
Ok.  Who thought this up?  Is it a Mayfield thing?
[Kids, in unison, break out in giggling.  Daddy is such a goof...]
Daaaadddddyyyyyy! That's silly!
[Catherine and Perry, between them, manage to bring Tarvek up to speed.  He spends the day making a grilled cheese/coffee/juice brunch for The Betty (he's not good at cooking, and grilled cheese is his primary skill). He and the kids draw Mother's Day cards.  He slips outside and steals a large amount of flowers from neighboring yards and the nearby park. He and the kids go out in the garage where they pound and bang and sing loudly (The kids teach their silly, clueless father how to sing "Row-row-row your boat" in round.).  When they're done they hang a very nice windowbox with fancy scroll work outside the kitchen window, as The Betty claps and croons how very sweet they all are, and how she's going to put pansies in it tomorrow.]
[Later Tarvek goes to see his friend, Ilsa Higa [ ].  He finds she's having a less than perfect day, herself.]
[When he returns he leaves Perry to baby sit Catherine, and takes The Betty out for dinner, Europan style -- insofar as Mayfield allows.  Mediocre French Restaurant, candle light at the tables and French travel posters on the walls, wine (not so good), music (standard crooners, which Tarvek rather likes).  If he could find a nightclub of any sort at all, he'd take her out dancing.  Instead he walks her home on his arm, telling her she's a wonderful mother, and that he's very grateful for all she does for them.]
[It should be said that he takes the drones very seriously, just as he would take sentient robots, intelligent computers, and biologically fabricated beings.  He's a Madboy, and he's got a peculiar sense of honor about that sort of thing.  He counts the drones as rather limited, but easily pleased and even rather charming sentient creations, and he tries hard to be kind to them. That night, because he's feeling a bit guilty about how much more fun it would have been to go out with Ilsa, he even kisses The Betty on the cheek (as much as she's likely to want in any case), and says "good night, dear," in a particularly gentle voice. It's Mother's Day, after all!]



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March 2012

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