(1938-01-10) Travel Plans
Details for Travel Plans
Summary: Annie bumps into Mikhale and he renews his offer to take her traveling, so that she can be his first 'customer' and recommend him to her friends.
Date: 10 January 1938
Location: Cafe Tasseo
Related: That's LIFE
Characters
MikhaleAnnie

It isn't uncommon for intrepid artists to set up in a cafe somewhere with a large collection of art work and set out to plan their next great master piece. What is uncommon is for Mikhale to be the artist. He's in his typical corner booth, and he has a piece of canvas next to him, several circles are being traced on the canvas, the piece still too new in development to have any actual shape or form. Precator lays across his feet, a cup of something dark forgotten at his side and a half eaten croissant on a plate next to it.

Being something of an upscale cafe, the clientele of Cafe Tasseo is also typically upscale witches and wizards. But, there are exceptions to every rule, and one of them is just slipping through the door from the cold day outside. Annie is not a regular customer, nor does she look like one, in a simple, muggle wool coat, her hands tucked protectively into a fur muff. She doesn't look particularly uncomfortable, just… out of place. There is a bright smile for the host, soft words exchanged, and then Annie is being led to a table.

Hearing someone come in, Mikhale looks up from his work and smiles at Annie, "Annie." He calls out to the other woman, "Won't you come sit?" He asks, gesturing to a spot at the table with him, still plenty of space there despite the rather large canvas being worked on.

Surprised to hear her name, Annie's step falters and she looks around, blue eyes finding Mikhale and the lump at his feet almost immediately. Her smile brightens at the familiar faces, she quickly excuses herself to the host, thanking him politely, and moves to the wizard's table. "Alright, Mikhale?" she greets. "Very kind of yeh t' invite me over, ta." Her words come as she's shrugging out of her coat and pushing it and the fur muff into the booth ahead of her as she sits.

Precator peeks up as someone approaches the table, with a glance up at his master, who nods his head almost imperceptibly, he'll walk over to Annie, and sniff at her feet for a moment and then sitting down on his haunches looks up at her, "Not at all, here… let me move some of this." He says shifting his things around a bit so that Annie will have plenty of room to sit. He smiles at her, "How are you today?" He asks cheerfully.

Annie's eyes drop to the dog, as does one hand, held with the back offered for him to sniff to get a recollection of her. "Hallo, handsome," she says to the animal, "Yeh look smashin' t'day." Her eyes lift again to the master, "I'm well, ta. Thought I'd have a cuppa, get in out of the cold." It's with clear interest that she regards the canvas. "Yeh make a fine circle. Very round," she observes lightly.

With a laugh Mikhale shifts the canvas so Annie can see it better, "Thanks… trying to come up with a poster for the shop, can't say I'm having much luck… my muse has stranded me on these wind whipped shores. Or some sort of rubbish like that." He shakes his head with a sigh, glancing down at the canvas. Precator sniffs at Annie's hand for a moment then lets his tongue hang out for a moment as if he wanted to lick it but decides against it, instead pushing his head so that Annie's hand is placed in a spot he wants her to scratch.

The young witch leans slightly, obliging the dog automatically, scritching her fingers behind his ears. "So, yer a travelin' artist then?" Annie asks with a grin. "Is there anythin' that yeh don't do?" There is a pause before her attention shifts from the canvas to regard the wizard again. "I'd heard yeh were openin' a shop, from a friend."

"Yes, I don't cook." Mikhale says with a straight face, "It's a terrible failing of mine, but one that has haunted me my entire life. My goal as a child was to open a resturant that would be the favorite of millions… but alas twas'nt meant to be." The wink Mik flashes Annie gives a lie to his over dramatisism. He grins, "Yes… I did, in fact, thank you for the idea." He considers the girl for a moment. "Actually, I've been meaning to talk to you about that…"

Annie attempts to play to the spirit of Mikhale's whimsy, pressing her lips together to tame her grin, but, alas, she is unsuccessful. She laughs softly, wrinkling her nose at the wink. "Yeh poor, poor man," the young witch commiserates. Still, her fingers scritch lightly at Precator's ears. "I'm happy t' have suggested somethin' useful." Her brows go up with curiosity at the statement he leaves dangling, waiting for him to go on.

"I know you said you'd be unwilling to go with just the two of us, but as I've always worked on referrals, and it was your idea. I was wondering if I could persuade you and… Tim wasn't it? To take a little trip with me, if you like it you can tell your friends, either way it's free for the two of you." Mikhale says in a bit of a rush.

Surprise lights Annie's eyes at this suggestion, "Well, it's funny that yeh bring it up, Mikhale, because I was only just tellin' my friend Rhyeline t'other day that I was reconsiderin' that beach yeh mentioned." Her eyes drop, and regard the quiet dog enjoying her petting. "I was thinkin' it might be nice t' have some quiet time, sittin' in the sand an' watchin' the sun sparkle on the water." There's a musing tone to the words, as if she's imagining how pretty that might be. "Course," she hastens to add, looking up with a half smile, "I'd recommend yeh anyway."

His eyes watching the girl as she contemplates the beach scene, Mikhale grins, "Well, I wouldn't want you to perjure yourself on my account." Mikhale says with a grin, "I'm more than willing to let you sample the goods so to speak first. Besides I've always found that experience sells much better than rumor." He scratches his ear, "You know, I think I have just the place for you. It's a quiet beach, palm trees all around, in a little half moon bay. The water is a turquoise that would make the Navajo weep if they found it in jewelery."

Precator has laid his head on Annie's knee, enjoying the scratching.

There is a gleam in Annie's eyes as the wizard describes the little bay, her gaze taking a distance as if she's trying to picture water that beautiful. "Cor, that sounds lovely." She looks down, her nose wrinkling again, this time at Precator, "Doesn't it, love?" Nope, not really afraid of being thought daft for talking to animals, this one. She chews on her bottom lip lightly, contemplating such a generous offer.

Precator licks his teeth in agreement. Mikhale shakes his head, "You'll spoil the little beast." He says with fondness, the fact that Annie hasn't mentioned Tim hasn't escaped Mik's attention, but he's far too polite to ask about it, "So, when would the two of you like to go?" Or not. "I have a pretty open schedule right now."

Of course she'll spoil him, all dogs deserve spoiling, at least in Annie's world. Which she clearly displays by asking the dog lightly, "Yeh'll not get spoiled, will yeh? No, 'cuz yer a good boy, an' good boys don't get spoiled." The question of when the two would like to go has her lip caught in her teeth again, before she looks up, speaking so lightly that it doesn't quite seem entirely sincere. "Well, Tim's a bit busy with work an' all, after the holidays…" She glances to the all but forgotten canvas again, "Most travel shops have the same old posters of beaches that aren't half as pretty when yeh get there."

Mikhale glances at the poster and shakes his head, "Well, I find that I'm in need of a bit of… shall we call it real life inspiration for this particular poster… I think a beach would suit it perfectly." Mikhale is content to let the subject drop now that he has at least an idea of where things stand for the librarian.

While Mikhale's attention is on the canvas again for a moment, Annie studies him, as if trying to size him up. Unfortunately, that's never really been a strong point for her, and everyone is assumed to be nice from the start. Sometimes she's right, sometimes she's wrong, but she never seems inclined to not give people the benefit of the doubt that they're as good hearted as she herself is. Apparently she comes to some sort of decision, and she sighs softly, deciding to confide in the wizard. "We've had a spot of trouble, just lately, Tim an' I," she says in a low voice, eyes drifting back down to Precator. "It's why I think it'd be grand t' just have a bit of time t' think."

Pursing his lips together for a moment Mikhale nods his head, "Yes, I sort of gathered that." Precator whines softly, pushing his head into Annie's lap, sensing her need for comfort perhaps. Mikhale takes a swallow from his cup, buying himself time to think, "Would you like to talk about it?" He asks after placing the cup down. "My shop's just across the way if you'd prefer a more private venue."

Annie blushes lightly, quick to shake her head in the negative. "Ta, but I couldn't bother yeh with such things." Her eyes raise, a grateful light in them. "It's very kind of yeh," she says softly, clearly appreciative. It's then a server steps up, having given Annie more than ample time to decide what she wants. The young witch just orders tea, 'with some of those little cakes, if yeh would' before her eyes are back on Mikhale, the momentary interruption giving her a chance to gather her thoughts again. "Were yeh thinking a short trip, t' the beach? I wouldn't want t' keep yeh away from town for very long, yeh might lose business."

With a wave of his hand, he shakes his head, "Oh, just long enough to get this right I should think. But who knows how long that will take. I wouldn't worry about it too much, it's no trouble to pop back in and check for messages if it runs long though. You're welcome to take as long as you need." He wrinkles his nose again at the poster and then begins to roll it up.

There are still times when Annie just forgets to think like a witch. While most muggle borns adapt very easily, it's always been her habit to drop into the muggle ways she grew up with, taking only a heartbeat to forget how easy it is for someone, and especially some as well traveled, to just pop back and forth. She smiles, feeling a little silly for not having thought that. "Of course yeh can. Sometimes I think my head just isn't quite screwed on properly." The words are full of light humor, a good natured prod at herself. "Would Precator be comin' as well?" She's actually never stopped to think if wizards ever apparate with their pets, and her brow furrows lightly with the contemplation.

"I think it'd be a bit difficult to leave him behind if he knew you were coming. I think he's quite taken with you." Mikhale says with an indulgent grin, "It's quite alright, we all fall back on comfortable things, particularly when we go through something difficult." Mik will allow the woman an out that doesn't demean her abilities or memory as a witch. "From where I stand your head seems screwed on quite nicely."

The man's words clear that furrow, and Annie smiles brightly at her new best friend. "Yeh hear that, precious? Yeh'll have a trip too." She grins at his tactful phrasing and the compliment he affords her. "Yer too kind, Mikhale. Or yer squintin'." The words are a light tease, her good humor back in full force. The server returns, with a small pot of tea, the little cakes, and accoutrements. Annie waits politely while he sets things on the table, giving him a chirped "Ta." for his assistance. She immediately reaches for the little cakes, but takes up the plate, first offering it politely to Mikhale. "Have yeh tried the little cakes? They're quite nice."

"Ahh, I have, thank you though, I prefer fruit." Mikhale grins at the younger witch, "Speaking of, remind me to get some fruit before we go. Nothing quite like eating tropical fruit in a hammock." He smiles at a memory and then finishing up rolling the paper puts it into a leather case he has for that purpose.

Annie nods dutifully, "Fruit. Aye, aye, sir." The plate is set back down and her fingers pluck up a little treat. Although it is small enough to be a comfortable bite for most, Annie instead bites the cake in half. The better to make it last. Her eyes roll in bliss at the sweet treat, and then she giggles at herself, covering her mouth to chew and swallow. "We'll see how fruit compares t' that," she grins. In perhaps a less than completely refined move, her tongue darts out to flick away a dot of frosting from her lip.

Watching Annie eat the cake Mikhale shakes his head, "Well, I can't say that I've ever had /that/ much enjoyment from some fruit. But I haven't from cake either so…" Tailing off with a smirk he asks again, "So, when would you be free?"

With the fairly reliable work schedule that she has, Annie doesn't really need to think very hard about the question. "I've got off work this weekend, because I put in so much time over the hols t' cover for those that wanted extra time off. Don't have t' go back until Tuesday, so I get three days. Is that too soon?" she asks with a touch of concern. It's not really much time for him to plan business around.

Doing some quick mental math, Mikhale shakes his head, "Not at all, I could have everything ready in an hour if you wanted to leave sooner." Clearly he has some experience doing these sorts of things at a quick pace. "Tomorrow whenever you're ready, I'd suggest bringing a bathing suit, a towel." He stops to think for a minute, "And a book." He doesn't mention clothing, either because he assumes she'll bring it or because it's optional. Totally one of the two.

Annie's face brightens at the prospect of a few days in the sun, especially when they're in the middle of the dreary British winter. "Saturday morning?" she suggests, giving them both just a touch more time to make their plans. Her head drops to regard the dog, who's head she is still scratching lightly. "We'll play in the water, Precator, and make sure yeh don't get too much sun."

Watching Annie talk to his pup makes Mikhale grin, the dog flaps his ears and gives a hard wag of his ears, licking Annie's hand quickly. "Sure, at the shop or would it be easier for me to come to you?"

"I can come by yer shop," Annie offers, looking up. "Around 9?" She is eager to make this as uncomplicated for him as she can, since the offer is so generous and thoughtful of him. "Or whenever is best for yeh," is added quickly.

"Certainly, if that's what is easiest for you." Mikhale says taking another sip from his cup, and realizing just how long he has been sitting here by how cold it is. He coughs and pointing a wand at the cup warms it back up with a silent charm. "Lets think… what else will we need… I'm afraid I've already admitted to my own skill at cooking, but if you can manage not to burn it, we'll have some local fish."

Annie is a Ravenclaw, she's all about the thinking. The second little bite of cake is finally popped into her mouth, and while it doesn't get quite the blissful reaction as the first taste, she still clearly enjoys it while she ponders. "I think I could manage alright with cooking. Mum taught me quite a bit, an' I've kept up with it. A lot of cookin' is like potions. Yeh just have t' have a care an' get the ingredients right."

Mikhale nods his head, "Well, then, that's settled." Mikhale is actually a pretty accomplished brewer but that doesn't mean he wants to cook. "Anything else you want to do aside from soak up the sun?"

This draws a soft laugh from Annie, and she chides him good naturedly. "Well, yer the travel man. I don't have the slightest what there'd be t' do besides." Reaching for the little teapot, Annie pours herself a cup, then indicates toward Mikhale's cup, "Would yeh like a bit more? I'm happy t'share."

Glancing into his cup and then draining what is left Mikhale nods his head, "Certainly, it's all just a matter of what you're interested in, surfing, snorkeling, fishing, spear fishing or water skimming." The last is a wizarding practice involving a broom, high speeds, and the like. "Not to mention some of the more interesting sea life, dolphins, rays and giant sea turtles."

Annie reaches across the table, tilting the little pot to refill Mikhale's cup as he lists through things they could do. "Cor, it all sounds so excitin'. I think I'd be willin' t' try just about anythin'. Except," she adds sheepishly, "I don't know that I could do my own fishin'. Or cleanin' fish. But I'll cook it." She apparently just doesn't like the potentially squeamish parts. Her eyes widen at one thought. "I'd love t' see the animals." She goes to the zoo quite often, as well. Though Mikhale surely had a hint of her love of animals from the attention she's lavishing on his pup.

"No problem." Mikhale says waving the fishing aside, "I'm sure we can find a few for you to play with, I know there is a pod that usually hangs around the bay so… hopefully they'll be about and you can swim with 'em. We'll play it by ear then, wouldn't want to rush your holiday after all."

It is a beaming smile that is bestowed upon Mikhale, and Annie looks simply delighted at the prospect of meeting an actual dolphin. "It sounds just grand," she says, not for the first time. Surely this is what little Annie must have looked like on Christmas morning, not so many years ago. With her own tea rapidly cooling, she takes a drink from her cup, then asks, "Will there be coconut trees?"

Mikhale laughs, "Of course. It wouldn't be a proper tropical island without Coconut trees on it, after all." Precator nuzzled into Annie's lap still, gives a contented snort and closes his eyes. "If I'm thinking of the right plant there is also a couple of breadfruit trees and some date palms."

The snort draws Annie's eyes, and she smiles fondly at the dog. "Such a good boy," she coos softly to him. "I can't wait, Mikhale. Thank you so much." The gratitude in her eyes and in her voice is genuine and heartfelt. A clock on the cafe's wall chimes, and Annie's eyes cut to it and disappointment steals her smile. "I'm afraid that I ought t' be goin'."

Nodding his head, Mikhale agrees "Yes, me too, well… I'll look forward to Saturday then." He smiles at the redhead. "Feel free to tell me if you need anything before then."

Sliding one hand gently under Precator's chin, Annie lifts his head as she leans over, and presses a kiss lightly to the top of his head, before nodding to Mikhale. "I will, thank yeh." Taking her coat in hand, Annie slips from the booth, shrugging into the coat and buttoning it with deft fingers. She leans across the seat to take up the fur muff, and her hand dips into her coat pocket as she straightens. "I'll see yeh Saturday mornin' then," she says brightly. Her hand rests on the table a moment before she removes it, and some coins for her tea are left behind. "Have a lovely day, Mikhale!" And then she turns in a swirl of coat, and makes for the door with a bit of a skip in her step.

Watching Annie leave, a smile spreads across Mikhale's face, why exactly it does so is up for anyone to guess at but as Precator comes over to his master he smiles down at the dog, scratching under his chin much to the dog's delight, "Very good my friend, very good." He stands up, gathers his things and whistles tunelessly as he leaves.

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