A Tiny Bucket of CrazyAuthor:
This one is teen.Spoilers:
Vaguely through AtS Season 1, and Leverage Season 1, but takes place before either series.Disclaimer:
I so totally own Leverage and Angel! Bow Down! *Doctor's Note: Patient exhibits delusions of grandeur and any claims of ownership are pure fantasy. No harm is meant. Seriously, it's better than her throwing rocks at people.*Author's Note:
When I think of Lorne, I think of him trying to help, trying to do good. I probably sound sappy, but the idea of him providing comfort of a broken person seems right. We'll miss you, Andy.
* * * * * * * * * *Los Angeles, California. July, 1998
Humans were a rarity in Caritas. There were human-looking patrons, like vampires. And from time to time, there were witches. But to most demons, vampires and witches were obviously more, not just plain humans. Caritas was a bar that catered to those that lived in the shadows of humanity.
But there was a human in the bar this night, a pure human without a trace of magic or demonic energy. It was a blonde woman, thin with sharp features dressed all in black. Her eyes were shrewd, taking in everything from the exits and patrons, before lingering on the cash register. And her aura was disjointed, showing brilliance and innocence. Lorne stared at her until he caught her eye. He smiled and gestured to the empty seat beside him. After she studied him for a few seconds, a frown marring her brow, she joined him.
"Can we get you something to drink?" Lorne asked, nodding his head at the bartender.
After a few seconds of silence, the bartender continued. "What?"
"I don't know," she said with a shrug. The bartender sighed heavily and looked at Lorne.
"What kind of drink are you in the mood for? Something bitter, something sweet?" Lorne finally asked, breaking the silence.
"Okay then," he said. He turned to the bartender. "Vrtch, get her a purple hooter."
The bartender nodded. A few moments later, the bartender set down a glass filled with a purple drink. She took a sip.
"So, would you like to sing?" Lorne asked.
She frowned, looking at him as though he'd grown a second head.
"Why would I sing?"
Lorne pointed behind them at the stage, where a woman with tentacles was singing Abba.
"You see, people come here to sing, and you are more than welcome to do so...," Lorne started, his voice trailing off as he waited for the woman to say her name.
She only frowned in confusion and stared at him.
"Okay, Sugarstick, this is the part where you say your name," he said.
"Really? Oh. I'm Parker."
"And I am the Host. I am the owner of this establishment," he said, gesturing with the hand that wasn't holding his Seabreeze.
"It's very nice. I like all the costumes," she said. "And there are no horses.”
“Is that a good thing or a bad thing?”
“Good thing. Horses are evil.”
“Okay. So, what brings you to my establishment tonight?”
“A job well done.”
“You don’t say much, do you?” Lorne asked. “You know most people come here to sing.”
“But I don't want to sing," Parker said, eying the stage with suspicion and fear.
Lorne sighed. "Are you sure? Because you seem to be in a good mood, but a bit... lost. Alone. If you're looking for something, and I might be able to help."
"Are you like a costumed musical therapist?" she asked, her suspicion increasing.
"Not exactly, Sweetie. I've got a special gift; I can see the future, see your life, but only if you sing. And you seem like you’re looking for something."
"Oh, so you're like a psychic costumed musical therapist," Parker said, scrunching her nose.
"Yeah, sure" Lorne sighed, "a psychic costumed musical therapist."
"But I don't want to go up in front of everyone."
"Then just sing to me here," Lorne said, his smile easy and friendly.
"What should I sing?"
Parker's face sent into a contemplative scowl before she made a decision. She opened her mouth and began to sing.
"I'm a lumberjack and I'm okay,
sleep all night and I work all day...."
As she sang, images flashed through Lorne’s mind, memories of pain, sadness, isolation and confusion, of never fitting in. He saw Parker learning and becoming the best thief, reckless and joyful in her escapades. Then her future flew through his mind, and he saw things turning around for her. By the time she finished the first chorus, Lorne was taking a sip of his blue drink.
"That's enough, honey."
"So, anything?" Parker asked.
"Well, you certainly are a tiny bucket of crazy," he said, grinning.
"Be careful. Take care of yourself."
"I always do," Parker grumbled.
Lorne saw the loneliness in her eyes.
"Sorry, but I don't approve of theft. But I will say that you've got a good heart. And someday, you'll have more, a family made up of friends who’ll understand you. Things will turn out okay for you, but it’ll take a while. And give horses a chance, they don’t always kill clowns. They’re not as murderous as you think.”
Parker’s eyes went wide. Lorne smiled and polished off his drink before leaving the bar.
He had some songs to sing.