Surroundings or Getting to Know You
No infringement intended. Joss owns Angel. Kripke owns Supernatural. Daryl is mine.
AN2: This is for thought, memory or emphasisThis is for more emphasis or when thought and emphasis meetTimeline:
Angel = months after 2.16 Epiphany / Supernatural = 4.17 It's a Terrible LifeSummary:
What do you do after higher powers intervene and stop you from committing suicide? Could you just move, forget about everything in your life, pretending that nothing happened? Do you strive to find what greater purpose is in your future? Kate Lockley is about to find out!
Surroundings or Getting to Know You
Kate had been working all morning when she looked up and saw people moving toward the hall to the break room. She found Sam and waved. Getting out of her chair, she contemplated what this infamous break room might look like.
“The look of concentration on your face really is a bit much. It‘s only lunch.” Sam spoke as she caught up with him.
Looking up, way way up, Kate gave him a half smile. “It’s just that I’ve always hated being the new person. I’m not nervous. It’s, well, it’s just that I’ve been the one in control for so long. No, that’s not right. Being a detective, I was in charge of the situation. I asked all the questions, got all the answers. I guess I just need to figure out where my place is here. Ya know?”
“I understand. You used to be the principal, now you’re the new kid.“ The smile was back Sam’s face. “I can help with that.”
Sam turned to the gentleman they were passing. “Hey Daryl, I have someone you should meet. Kate this is Daryl, Daryl this is Kate. Daryl is the Head of the PR dept.”
“How very nice to meet you, Kate.”
Kate noted that, although Daryl’s smile was just as brilliant as Sam’s, it carried that special hint of creepiness. Like the kind lion cubs get from the jaguar staring down at them from the tree above.
“Hello Daryl.” She was about to add ‘nice to meet you too’ until she noticed his eyes wandering a lower than she was comfortable with.
Sam noticed as well, “Watch it, Daryl. She used to be a cop.”
Daryl’s manner changed completely. “My apologies, ma’am.” He bowed, took Kate’s hand and kissed it. “Have a wonderful day.” Then he just left, his eyes front and went on with his day--not saying or doing anything that he was typically know for.
Sam and Kate tried not to hurt themselves laughing and continued to the break room.
Waiting until they were out of earshot, Sam leaned in a bit closer and lowered his voice, “Daryl’s been with the company for 11 years now. He has a wife and four kids. He’d tell you he’s a ‘family man’, but his girlfriend, Suzanne in accounting, would tell you otherwise.”
“Gossip really is a guilty pleasure of mine.” Kate admitted, though actually it was just the need to know her surroundings. “What else you got for me?”
“Well, I can tell you about Sally in HR, and how she likes to have private meetings with janitor, but that may
be too much on your first day.”
Kate chuckled in agreement.
Entering the door to the break room Kate came to a halt just inside, causing Sam to bump into her. She needed a moment to take it all in. Unsurprisingly, it had all usual things you would fin d a break room: a couple vending machines, a sink, a microwave, some tables and chairs, and a fridge. There were even the uncommon things you don’t find in every break room. The earth tone walls and soft lighting gave off a homey feeling. The TV was an added bonus and even larger than any she had seen at the station, and the police department NEVER had surround sound. The coffee machine was substandard, but the baristas behind the coffee counter more than made up for it.
“That‘s where I‘m starting.” Kate spoke while practically running for the coffee line.
“Well, it‘s a good place to start,” Sam replied. “How ‘bout we hit the buffet after? I hear they have Chinese today.”
“Yes, Kate, buffet.”
“Yes, Kate, Chinese.”
“Where is it?”
Sam didn’t try to hide the laughter in his eyes when he answered. Kate was like a kid and she just heard they were going for ice cream.
“There‘s another room through that door.”
“The break ‘room’ is a whole suite? I should have come to the office a long time ago.”
Sam just smiled.
They had their coffee and were waiting in line to get to the buffet. “It’s break time and it’s not coffee and doughnuts! Chinese food, I don‘t have to eat cold and out of a to-go box!”
“I think I can make a suggestion for doughnuts and cold Chinese, if you‘re feeling homesick?” Sam said, with a straight face mind you.
Kate gave him a look, then smiled and shoved him. “Take that back!”
Sam laughed while feigning pain.ANGELSNANGELSNANGELSNANGELSNANGELSN
After they found a seat, Sam decided this would be the best time to find out more about his newest co-worker.
“So, what brings you to the glamorous world of telemarketing?…if you don‘t mind me asking.”
“Well,” Kate thought, “let‘s just say I had an epiphany. I realized I was meant for something…something bigger than the police force.”
“And you think, cop…” Sam lifts his hands up like a scale, “…or telemarketer.”
Kate laughed. “To be honest, I don‘t know what I‘m supposed to be. Growing up I always wanted to be a cop, just like my dad. And I got pretty good, maybe a little too good.” A memory flashed through her mind. “But that’s all behind me and I have to find a different path now.”
“Well,” Sam straightened up, cleared his throat and started talking as though through a PA system. “I’d like to thank you for choosing Sandover Bridge and Iron as your first step to something better.”
Kate straightened up, “Thank you! I‘m honored to be part of the Sandover family. It will be a privilege to work here.”
They both laughed and went back to a comfortable silence as they ate.
“So, do you have a short list, yet?”
“Hmm?” Kate had just taken a sip of coffee.
“Things that you want to do, now that you’re no longer a cop.”
Setting the cup back down, she thought, “Well, other than to visit my uncle, not really.”
Sam had an inquisitive look.
“I haven‘t seen my uncle in so long--not since Aunt Karen died. I should have stopped by on my way out here.” Kate was silent for a bit. “I love cars. He would always let me play in his yard, when I was younger. He had sooo
many cars!” Kate’s eyes bugged out at the memory and they both laughed.
“I used to imagine where they all came from and made up these elaborate stories for just about every single one. There was an old ‘49 De Soto station wagon that was one of my favorites.” Kate just sat there mesmerized by the memory and she smiled.
“Could you tell me the story? By the way the stars are shining in your eyes, it must be a good one. You know, only if you want to.”
Kate was surprised out of her trance, Sam was taking interest. What was that he said about stars and my eyes?
“Ok, there was a family: a mother and father, seven kids and a golden retriever. This car was always a part of the family. It was brand new, right off the lot. All seven kids were born in the back seat. The first two, because they could never get to a hospital on time, then, it just became a tradition. They would take it out on picnics and long road trips, especially that annual Christmas trip to Grandma’s. The kids would fall asleep on the long drive back home and would have to be carried into the house. The two older boys would fight over who would take it out on their dates, usually to a drive-in or the beach. Sometimes it was just the eldest and Bones, the family dog, cruising around after school let out the summer.”
Sam was oddly engrossed in the story, as Kate told it. It wasn’t so much the subject--though it was nice and well thought out--but, it was how passionate she was about it.
“Then, when had a bad year, the mom and kids stayed home while the dad had to look for work somewhere else. He‘d live in the car while he worked in an old factory five days a week, three counties over, and then drive home on the weekends. Every night before he went to sleep he‘d look at the picture of his wife and kids, that he always kept in his wallet. He‘d tell himself that something great would happen, something so big he could go back home--for good. After months of going back and forth, he walked in some little diner and ordered food. While drinking his coffee, he heard that his old factory back home was up and running again. They just got a huge contract that would have them swamped for a long
time and would definitely be, only the first of many. He quit his job, went back home and the little one never learned how close they were to losing their home.
Years later, the eldest is packing for college. The car’s all set, he’s saying goodbye to his mom, siblings and ol’ Bones. Then, expecting his dad to drive him the fifty miles it takes to get to the school, he’s startled by a handshake. He looks in his hand and there’s the keys. His dad tells him how proud he is and to take care of the car for him. Father and son both feel his chest tighten, but neither acknowledge the fact because that might lead to crying and everyone know men never
Sam gave Kate a look, but she just laughed.
“One last look back at his family, and then he hopped in. On the dash, was the same picture his dad kept in his wallet. On the back it said, ‘Never forget where you come from, Son.’
Many years later, after he’d started his own family--and his oldest had a license--he passed the proverbial torch. Six months in, the son was killed in a car accident. When they got the car back, he worked on it every chance he got--to feel closer to his son, as well as restore it. When it was finished, he left it in the garage, checking in on it every few weeks to keep it up. It was never driven again. Over the years, it was taken care of less and less, until it was rusty and oxidized. After he died, there was just too much need to fix it--that it was towed away. Towed away and brought to Uncle Bobby’s, where I played in it, fell asleep in it, and thought about my future.” Kate finished the story and her eyes focused back on Sam.
Kate saw the look on Sam’s face. Oh god, please tell me I didn’t over share…again.
“Whoa, do I sound crazy or what?” She chuckled.
“No, I was just…that story.” Sam tripped over his words, when he realized that he must have been staring at Kate. “Something about it…” Something was definitely tugging at him to remember. Things had popped out, like they sounded familiar, he just couldn’t figure out why. “I guess…sometimes you can forget how much a good car can become part of your life."
Sam felt another tug. Something that looked like a memory flashed through his mind. That Dean Smith guy was singing while driving. The words 'mullet rock' rang in Sam's ears. Apparently, Sam was riding shot gun and read ing through a journal. Then the 'memory' ended. He would have to find a way to talk to the guy about all this stuff--the dreams, the flashes, the weird feelings of things not being right. They were happening way too often these days. Just by listening to Kate's story he was getting flashes of some older guy wearing a trucker hat and yelling "Idjits!" Where did that come from? For now, Sam just went back to his food and conversing with Kate
"So, where‘s the De Soto now?”
Kate relaxed, thankful that she hadn’t weirded him out. “Last I heard, it was still in my uncle’s junkyard. He said he would keep it for me, but that was years ago, I doubt he still has it.” A memory flashed through her mind--back to the last time she saw it, just months before Aunt Karen died. She shook the thought away, before the tears started. “As I got older, he taught me everything he knew about car and he let me work on them with him. I’ve always want to restore that old car, just never had the time.” Time? Like you’ve practically been talking about yourself the whole time and haven’t found out anything about him! “I’m sorry, I’ve been talking this whole time.
"What about you? What brings you to the great Sandover Bridge and Iron Company?”
“Well…” Sam thought. as tried to figure out how much he should tell about his ‘life’ before here. What if she thinks I'm crazy? Hell, I think I'm going crazy. I can't lie to her, not after she just told me that story. This is her first day in the office, she didn't have to share such a personal memory with me--she hardly knows me I have to tell her something to keep her from second guessing her decision to share.
“…it’s so out there, you probably won’t believe me. But, I don’t think ‘What? You never dreamt about being a telemarketer when you were a little girl?’ is gonna cut it.”
Kate braced herself, though she didn’t know what he could say that was more out there than vampires.
“I have these dreams. I’m fighting…these things.”Oh geez! He is talking about vamps. Quick, what do I say? Well, he didn’t think I was crazy when I told him my story. Then again, I didn’t say anything about blood sucking monsters. Ok, I just need to go with it.
“Vampires?” Kate asked, with a low and completely serious tone.
Sam almost laughed, until he realized that she wasn’t joking around. He looked around to check that no one was listening and in all seriousness, he answered. “No, I was gonna say ghosts. What do you know about vampires?”
“I know that they’re not fluffy pink bunnies and don‘t sparkle in sunlight. They’re at best, junkies and mobsters.” Kate thought about the night she found except for a select few father. “At worst, they’re serial killers, businessmen and lawyers. I’ve come across a few. It’s sorta why I’m here. I needed to get a fresh start, away from all that.”ANGELSNANGELSNANGELSNANGELSNANGELSN
Kate closed and locked the door behind her. After a long first day at the office, coming home for a good home cooked meal and popping in a movie felt like the best thing, right now.
Kate checked to make sure the wooden cross and stake were still on the side table where she sets her keys. Then she checked if the palm cross was still above the door. Seeing that her precautions were still in place, Kate kicked off her shoes, flipped on the stereo and made her way to the kitchen.
Grabbing things from the fridge, she thought about her first day at work. It wasn’t altogether bad. There were some things that were nice. She wished they had been able to finish their conversation, but break time was over and they had to put it aside for the moment.
The ringing of the phone brought her back to the present. “Hello?” When Kate heard the voice on the end of the line, she smiled…then quickly changed her demeanor to sound casual. “Hey, Sam. What‘s up?” Kate sat on the couch and tucked her feet under. They talked for a while before, “Coffee?…Sure, how about tomorrow before work? Yeah, I’d like that…compare notes, maybe. Ok, then, I'll see you tomorrow. Bye.”
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