Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Where the tired, worn out mercenaries go for a break. Includes a pool table, a table, a TV, and a couch or two facing the TV. It has the stairwell that leads down into the Dining Room, and connects directly to the Library.

Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Eugene Jefferson » Sun Jul 31, 2011 9:00 pm

Early morning, 2 AM, Eugene Ross Jefferson rose from his bunk and left the sleeping quarters, quiet as a mouse. He already knew how to place his steps, avoiding the creaky boards - just another thing to add to his growing list of things to repair, replace, or refurbish. Once he crossed the threshold, he took less measured steps. The planks didn't squeak beneath his weight. Gene extended his arm and felt the ridges in the wood against the tips of his bare fingers. He inhaled and smelled a mixture of mud, rain, and lethargy. So much to do, so little time. He thought about making a pot of coffee, but rationalized that he'd never finish it on his own, and to save it for the others meant imbibing cold bitterness; no one liked waking up to a pungent taste in their mouths, let alone one that was chilled.

Gene passed through the kitchen without pause. He almost stubbed his toe on the corner of a table, but merely grazed the top with his hip. Experience taught him that that one was bound to leave a bruise, one he couldn't be half-assed to tend to right now. So he kept walking, rubbing at his tender side with calloused digits. The soft flannel of his shirt was a modest comfort. It lacked the potency of a Medic's equipment, but he wasn't about to run to Tom for a little bump. Especially not at this hour.

Upon reaching the common room, Gene finally bothered to seek a light. He slid his hand along the wall to his left. Groping at the darkness, it took a moment to find the switch. The lone bulb up on the ceiling flickered to life. It buzzed with an ethereal hum, faint and distant as if from another realm. One more thing to fix. Gene slouched onward and towards a drawer. He rummaged through the drawer (made a mental note to organize its contents in compartments) and pulled out an opened deck of cards. He took his find over to the seating area and settled down.

The Engineer pried the deck from its worn casing and knocked them against the wood. The fraying plastic slivers settled into rank and file. He brought a thumb up to the corner and watched them ripple. Gene placed them out one by one, searching for something that thus far lacked a name. When he finished going through the deck, he counted 51 cards: No Ace of Hearts.

Gene reached into his pants pocket and retrieved a red pen. He took it to one of the Jokers left in the bent case and drew up a new Ace of Hearts. Satisfied with his handiwork, he began to shuffle the new and improved deck. The cards flowed through his palms, clapping against one another in a steady predictable motion - unlike the applause of gunfire...

Rat-a-tat-tat! Ratta-tat-tat! ...rat-tat...! BOOM! ...tatta-tat...!

A grimace marred his features for a split second. Gene brought index finger and thumb up to his forehead, spread them apart, and massaged his temples. The applause ceased. He looked down at his other hand. After a moment's hesitation, he dealt himself a game of Solitaire.

After clearing a suit, it occurred to Gene that he had forgotten to take his sleeping pills.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Arseni Pavelov » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:32 pm

Arseni was not particularly enjoying his first night at Swamp Rat. The night crept up on the dark room, scratching of mice in the walls and the floor. However, Arseni didn't see them as 'mice'. His mind never grew from childish paranoia, and this came back to bite him. The scratching was claws of once-men out to get Arseni, the floor was of monsters that wanted him. He couldn't sleep. He regretted letting himself sober. He dared not grope for his bottle of vodka. He didn't even want to leave his bed. However, a creaking of the door brought him to reality. Certainly quiet as a mouse, Gene was, but for the man who could hear the mice in the walls it was not very hard to catch wind of Gene leaving his quarters. Admittedly, it was only chance. But it still prompted Arseni to stand, after a pause. He groped blindly for his liquid courage, but came up emptyhanded.

And so, instead, he got himself a little security blanket. He stole his RED-supplied red blanket, wrapping it around himself. He was bigger and, best put, he was just about as quiet as a crocodile. His clunky steps were far behind Gene's, smells only serving to heighten his paranoia. He stopped in the kitchen, unlike Gene. He retrieved a bottle of his own liquid courage, and slid a second to be securely hung in his blanket-cape. He had already some night vision from his sleepless stare at the bunk above him, and so he was quite good about not bumping into things. He stepped backwards, looking over his bottle. He resisted the urge to drink just yet. He didn't want to break his second bottle. He moved from the kitchen.

Clap, clap, clap, goes the cards. Arseni wished he'd opened his bottle. He waitedas soon as the sound stopped, but it wasn't long before knocked lightly on the door. He opened it slowly; "I-Is anyvun there?" He peered inside, blinking as he cowered back from the light. He almost shyly peered around the door, only his eyes visible. He was prepared to bolt; he wasn't entirely sure who was here in the first place.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Eugene Jefferson » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:48 pm

Lost in his game of strategy and luck, Gene took a moment to react to the voice coming from the door. He lifted his head, craned his neck to the side, and stared at the man. He recognized him in passing as one of the newer recruits. A Demoman, wasn't it?

Gene took note of the other man's skittishness. With a warm smile, he gestured for the other to come over and have a seat. "It's just me, pardner." The Engineer eyed his cards once more and tried to recall his last train of thought. He thought he'd seen a six of clubs somewhere. No cigar. Just a trick of the light then. He dealt out a new layer of cards and sighed.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Arseni Pavelov » Sun Jul 31, 2011 11:20 pm

The demoman blinked. The other's looking over at him led him to cower back a little. However, he was drawn to that warm smile. He stepped forward, closing the door behind him. His RED blanket cloak swept after him, his bottle clinking in the blanket. He nodded. "I-it is beink nice to meet you, sir." He offered, sitting. He placed the vodka bottle down, rubbing the bottle he'd had inside the blanket. "Y-you vant drink? I vas going to have one." He offered a smile. "Calms nerves."

He looked over at the cards, before up at the engineer. "Vhat is your name, sir?" He asked, as politely as he could manage. "I am sorry to be bargink in on your game. But I coult not sleep and I vas hearink you get out of bet, so I follow." He gave a weak smile. He was planning on waiting on the other's reply before he downed his 'liquid courage', quite thankful the other was harmless. And that the room was well lit.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Eugene Jefferson » Sun Jul 31, 2011 11:34 pm

"Pleasure's all mine," Gene replied. He swept up his game of Solitaire. It didn't feel right to have a deck of cards and not share. Though, his repertoire of two-person card games was limited to Speed. His eyes flickered to the liquor and he shook his head. "Naw, not at this hour. It never puts me to sleep."

After Gene set up the piles and two cards in the center, he looked back up. "Eugene. But Gene's what everyone calls me. And I don't mind. It gets borin' after a while. I'm sorry for disturbin' ya." He thought he'd been quiet, but apparently he wasn't the only one with trouble sleeping. It wasn't the nicest thing to have in common, but it could become a topic if only out of desperation. Hopefully they'd never have to turn to it.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Arseni Pavelov » Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:10 am

The demoman nodded, taking his drink and opening it. It took him less then five seconds to get at least a fourth of the contents of the bottle in his mouth, and another two to set the bottle down. "I am preferrink it. It helps me." He smiled. "But you are suitink yourself. Zere is to be more for me." Another drink, though not as long.

He blinked as the other introduced himself. "Is nice to be knowink your name. My name is Arseni." He offered, following it up with a drink. "No, no, is ok. I vas not sleepink in any case. I vas vide avake." He took a drink, yet again. He was looking to get drunk. At 2am. "Is very hard to be sleepink here. But I vill not trouble you vith my problems. Are you settink up for new game?" He looked at the cards.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Eugene Jefferson » Mon Aug 01, 2011 8:55 am

Gene watched as the man all but devoured the liquor. Everyone had their vice, this much was true. "To each his own," he answered. He wouldn't question the other's methods.

"Arseni? I've never heard that one before." And Gene assumed that it was more common in Arseni's native tongue. He let out a sigh of relief, knowing that it wasn't completely his fault that the Demoman was up and about. "Yeah, do ya know how to play Speed?"
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Arseni Pavelov » Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:48 pm

Arseni smiled. He was glad the other didn't bother asking, at least. His drinking produced some sort of fast result, he relaxing into the chair. And pulling his blanket shroud closer. He shrugged at the mention of his name. "Is name of grandfather." He resisted a laugh at the sigh. "I am not knowink about most cart games. Vould you teach me?" He asked, rubbing the back of his neck. "At old base frient woult only be talkink, and complainink about cart lack."

He drank a bit more of the vodka. Delightful vodka.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Eugene Jefferson » Mon Aug 01, 2011 3:26 pm

The family tradition of naming kids after their grandchildren always struck Gene as cute yet a little odd. After all, how could you be sure who was being addressed when both of them were in the same room? His uncles and cousins always had that problem at family reunions and their voices would get so loud while squabbling over who got first dibs on the pie.

Surprise spread across Gene's face. "Ya don't know how to play Speed? It's practically my duty to show ya how then." He began by gesturing towards the layout of the game, explaining what each pile's function was and what sort of cards could be played upon what. It was relatively simple and easier to pick up on by playing.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Arseni Pavelov » Mon Aug 01, 2011 9:56 pm

In this case, Arseni was one of the fortunate few who never actually met his grandfather to get horribly, horribly name-confused. Though, fortunate might not be Arseni's exact definition. He stretched his legs out a little, watching Gene as suddenly he was surprised. He opened his mouth; "I am greatful you are willink to show me." He offered, before leaning over the table.

Arseni'd never quite understood card games, and thus a little bit of Eugene's tutorial went right over his head. But the Russian did his best to understand, at least. When Gene was through, he nodded. "Can ve try to be playink zis game?" He asked, sittng back. "I am not sure I am understandink, but I vould like to try my best."
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Eugene Jefferson » Mon Aug 01, 2011 10:23 pm

Fortune's favor was whimsical and unpredictable. There was no telling who she'd bless, nor for what reason. No matter what you did, you'd never be able to sway her opinion. Gene didn't understand her, nor did he try to. Instead, he grappled with reality and accepted things as they came, never griping for long about his luck of the draw.

"There's no need for gratitude. It's just a simple card game. You can thank me when I save yer life out on the field." Modest though his words may have been, Gene didn't shy away from his newfound friend. In fact, he seemed to be opening up fairly quickly.

Gene gave a quick nod in answer to the other's enthusiasm. It was, to say the least, refreshing. Most people tried to be polite about declining offers but always fell short. To find someone genuinely ready to play was a nice change of pace. "All right. So remember, you can only go up or down one card in value. Five cards in your hand at once. No slammin' yer whole hand down." With that said, he flipped his center card and began.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Arseni Pavelov » Tue Aug 02, 2011 12:54 am

To ruin a metaphor, Arseni always came up with the short end of the stick when it came to Fortune and her favor. This, however, he cared very little about. He took to his life as Gene did, although 'grappling' was more applied to his bottles of vodka rather than his grip on reality. In fact, it was rare he complained at all. Things happened as they happened, and normally he was too drunk to care anyway.

"Vell, still. My thankink stands still, ant I will just thank you more ven you are savink me." He nodded, smiling. Arseni wasn't a man to form bonds fast, but he certainly liked Gene. He seemed smart, and was nice enough. He was a nice teammate to meet first. Even if he was currently wrapping his blanket cocoon a little bit too tightly around his lower half to keep it on.

If Arseni'd been told about how people were declining, he'd certainly have gotten confused. Games were to pass the time for him, and a card game was no different then playing 'which of your prized possessions did I stick the sticky to?' with an annoying scout! Given, he normally cheated in that game and placed a sticky on all of them. But the scout dealt with it. He snapped back into focus as the other talked. "Right, right. I vill try not to be messink up too badly." He joined Gene in beginning. Of course, he was both new and underexperienced in card games; he screwed up multiple times, and unless Gene went easy on him, would end up with a loss on his record for this game.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Eugene Jefferson » Tue Aug 02, 2011 4:50 am

Not one to argue the point, Gene nodded and simply smiled. He answered, "Sounds like a plan to me." And while he may not have known much about Arseni, Gene had gathered enough from the man's body language more so than his words. The defensive cocoon, the reliance on alcohol, many little factors which told a passage from the whole story. It was the tone that Gene listened for. The way Arseni talked and presented himself suggested a very withdrawn sort, afraid to put his true front out on display. Gene respected that. He wasn't going to act as though he knew better. If and when people changed, it was best that they did it for themselves, not because the Engineer asked for it.

It didn't matter how many times Arseni attempted an invalid move. Gene would bring his cards back in one hand and dictate with the other for Arseni to retrieve his card. A font of patience, Gene showed no signs of frustration with his teammate. "Startin' off, I don't think we should play with the 'doubles' rule. Ya can't play the same value on top of another. See how this is a six? You can either play a five or a seven. Nothin' else."
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Arseni Pavelov » Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:32 am

Arseni offered a smile. Gene's analysis of Arseni was actually very close to correct. He might have descended into embarrassment if he knew how easily Gene read him. In any case, he was glad the other didn't mind. He personally saw Gene as a certainly nice man, happy for the other's patience. He wasn't someone good at reading others; he curled his blanket cocoon tighter. It was slipping again. At least, as far as he could tell.

If he wasn't semi-drunk by this point, he probably would have responded with embarrassment to his multiple invalid moves. He appreciated the other's patience, though, at least. At Eugene's proposition, the man nodded. "Zat is goot plan." He was slowly but surely learning the game, even if admittedly he was having a number issue here and there. However, he was learning, at least. He nodded at the explanation, "I am able to play four or seven to five, and five and eight to six? Is how vork?"
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Eugene Jefferson » Tue Aug 02, 2011 12:02 pm

"I could find some clothes pins and we could clip that blanket up so ya don't have to fuss so much," Gene suggested, eyes on the fabric. He knew of kids who had done similar things, relying on security blankets to get themselves through social situations. There was something about a tangible object that offered more reassurance than forced positive thinking. It was there in plain view, always there for you no matter what. Gene didn't know the psychology behind it - if there even was any - but it made sense in his head that someone would want something to cling to (if not someone.) Maybe, just maybe, people were meant to rely on one another and be dependent.

Gene chuckled softly. "Naw. Four or six on a five. You just count up or down once. Five and seven to a six." By this point, Gene had set his own hand down and focused on helping Arseni clear his hand until no more moves could be made.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Arseni Pavelov » Tue Aug 02, 2011 12:43 pm

"Oh, no, is fine. Is fine." He offered a smile. Arseni's security blanket wasn't for social situations, unfortunately; he was a little uncomfortable in social situations, certainly, but not enough to need a blanket. Rather, his blanket was there for him to hide under. He was afraid more of the world of the things in the floorboards than of the world of human interaction. In any case, he preferred the blanket. It was soft and he felt nice under it.

Arseni was one to depend on things.

"Oh." He looked embarrassed, taking another drink of the bottle. "I see." He looked confused for a moment as Gene's hand was set down, before the other helped him clear his hand. He smiled; he didn't mind the babying that Gene was applying. The Russian sorely needed it. "Zank you." He offered, glad the alcohol was kicking in. "I am gladdenink you are willink to up ze put with me." He said, completely butchering the English language as his drinking started effecting his mouth. He wasn't good with idioms while drunk.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Eugene Jefferson » Wed Aug 03, 2011 10:15 am

Gene wasn't aware that teaching a man how to play a card game was considered babying. Good thing it wasn't an issue on either end. "It's not a matter of puttin' up with ya." Eventually he retrieved his hand and caught up to Arseni, showing him a more realistic pace at which the game of Speed was played. He was by no means an expert, but Gene could hold his own fairly well. "But you're welcome."
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Arseni Pavelov » Wed Aug 03, 2011 12:51 pm

Arseni was more used to exasperation and giving up rather than the patient babying, which was also known as being absurdly helpful to the drunken man, that Gene applied. His semantics were unarguable, if only because at the moment he was suitably drunk. "Oh, vell. I am not knowink man who help without givink up." He offered as a response and explanation, as well as a smile. He had trouble keeping up with Gene as soon as they moved on, but he managed to keep up, at least. He focused on his cards, doing his best to beat Gene. He was playing to win, or at least, trying. Still, he only made one or two errors in his quest to win. It was an improvement.
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Eugene Jefferson » Wed Aug 03, 2011 6:06 pm

Throwing your hands up in a fuss never helped anyone. Sometimes you had to sit down and tough it out, no matter how much you wanted to pull your hair out. In the end, everyone gained something out of such patience. So Gene waved aside Arseni's concerns. He wanted to play cards, not sweat the small stuff. "Real men don't give up," the Engineer teased, words tinged with smoky sarcasm. "If ya can't hold your ground in a simulation like this," - he gestured to the playing field of cards - "There ain't no way you can keep your cool in a battle. Everyone's got a boiling point, but they can work on it."

Gene leaned back, squared his shoulders, and plopped one last card down on the pile to his right. "Speed. Want to play again?"
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Re: Doc Holiday (Pavelov) - July 31

Postby Arseni Pavelov » Sat Aug 06, 2011 9:59 pm

Arseni knew that fusses never helped anyone. But he knew that he typically caused them, and thus he'd gotten too used to it. He blushed, embarrassed at the teasing jab. "Right. Right. You are correct." He's a bit embarrassed that the other pointed that out. "Is correct. But I am knowink many who are not knowink that." He shrugged.

He blinked as he managed to suddenly lose. "Yes! I vould like to play again." He wanted to win at east one game to his 'mentor'. Then there'd at least be some success in it.
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