(1939-09-30) Fun and Games and Purpose
Details for Fun and Games and Purpose
Summary: Two strangers meet on the Waterloo Bridge, have a chat, and walk to a pub.
Date: 30 September 1939
Location: Waterloo Bridge, London

It's a cool evening, properly into Autumn now, and the light drizzle is drawing the fog up from the lazy water of the Thames. It's still early enough in the process that the view from the Waterloo Bridge isn't yet obstructed, and to one side the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben stand proudly, while to the other Canary Wharf is bustling with activity. Taking her time getting back home after running an errand for her father, Katie Hind is stopped about the middle of the bridge, feet tucked into the rail to boost her height a few inches as she looks toward Big Ben. The clock is just chiming six, and the girl has her eyes closed, her lips moving with each magnificent gong, one hand holding a black umbrella aloft, the other curled into a fist, held close enough to those whispering lips to make one think she's perhaps whispering to it.

Galen is in no real hurry as he leans over the railing, elbows perched on top as he blandly stares out at the view. The collars of his long coat - a rather nice looking one, too - have been pulled up. Flicking the remains of a cigarette from his fingers, Gale turns and begins walking. His hair stands at more of a spike because of the dampness, and dragging his fingers through it doesn't help any. A dull little smirk flicks against his lips as he approaches Katie, watching her curiously. "What are you doing?" he asks bluntly in hi slow, disinterested tone.

It's only five bells in, and Katie opens one blue eye, rolling it to take in Galen before, quietly in the momentary echo of the fifth gong, she says, "Shhh." The eye closes again, and on the sixth gong her lips move again, the whisper unheard in the ring of the chime. There's a pause as the sound of traffic and the ships down at the wharf fill the damp air once more, then Katie's eyes open at the same time her hand does, revealing little bits of paper in her palm. Her lips purse and she blows, scattering the scraps to the wind and the whims of the Thames when they land on the water. Now she turns her focus on Galen, stepping back down off her railing perch so she has to look up at him, and she answers. "Posting a letter. What're yeh doing then?"

"Uhhh-" Galen lifts his hand as she shushes him, as if to gesture for her to carry on. So instead he turns to lean his arms on the railing again, a little grunt of annoyance escaping him. He shifts his head when he catches her movement, and a bemused smirk flicks out. He utters in a low, almost unfriendly tone, "Yea, okay." He looks over the bridge briefly before he rolls his shoulders back. "Nothing very entertaining," he answers her plainly. "The names Gale," he offers. For someone with an irritable expression, his introduction is relatively friendly even if it's said in a low tone.

Katie gives the stranger a not very veiled once over, taking in his fine looking coat and spikey hair. Despite her umbrella, the drizzle has also gotten to her own hair, making the red locks a bit more curled than they are when dry. "Katie," she returns, adding, "It's a pleasure t'meet yeh." It sounds habitual, not giving away much in the way of whether it's an actual pleasure or not. She's a complete outward contradiction to Galen's demeanor, looking somehow bright and sunny even in the rain. Her attention turns to watch a slow moving ship coming out from under the bridge where they stand, and she raises her free hand to wave to the deck hands, a few of whom wave in return. "Yeh'll catch yer death out without a 'brelly," she notes casually.

"Yea," Galen murmurs out unenthusiastically in response to her conversational 'a pleasure to meet you' line. He rolls his shoulders again, eying the redhead slowly and with a curious look. "Did someone give you extra cheer or something?" he asks, and the comment could have been a joke by the way he smirks, but the tone is cool. He glances over the bridge again, staring down at the ship before glancing back to Katie. He shrugs uncertainly. "I haven't caught it yet. I'm probably heading inside anyway." Not that he moves or anything. "Are you going to be there for a while?"

The question, even though it might be construed by some as slightly insulting, brings Katie's wide smile out. "Or somethin'," she says agreeably. The shorter young woman steps back from the rail, turning toward Galen with her full attention again. "I was thinkin' t'watch the ships for a bit, but the chill is settling an' even with a 'brelly it'll not t'be fit weather soon. I've no time t'be ill." There's a glance back to the water as she says, "No, I've mailed my letter, so it'd be best t'get inside as well. Find a nice warm fire in a cozy pub for a pint an' a bit of somethin'." Something that's not fish and chips.

Galen lowers his head in a simple nod. "Can't say I'd fancy being ill," he agrees lowly. His green eyes lift to scan around, and he gestures out with a hand in one direction. "An interesting pub down that way," he points out. "Has its entertainment," he adds. Like the game of cards he's planning on playing with a good drink.

Katie looks in the direction that Galen indicates, giving a nod of her head. "That way's good as any. I'll share th'brelly, but since yer taller yeh'll have t'do the carryin'. I might poke yeh in the eye, otherwise." The umbrella is offered out, and she asks curiously, "Entertainment like a pub sing? That's always so nice an' cheery, moreso on an evenin' that promises t'be dreary with rain an' fog." She's clearly never had the sort of trouble that makes a person wary of strangers, as easily and cheerfully as she talks to this new acquaintance.

Galen considers this, dipping his hand into his pockets as he stares at her. "You hang on to it," he decides as he rolls his shoulders. "It's not going to make much of a difference now." Pulling a hand from his pocket, he drags a hand through his hair, slicking it back but also with a few spiked up strands that are missed. He gestures her onward, because he waits a second while he looks over her, only shrugs, and continues on. "Singing," he mutters out, his lips twitching out as he grumbles. "I was thinking of something a little more… Well… A good game of billiards or cards." He smirks and glances at the redhead. "Why, do you sing at pubs?"

"Alright then," Katie says, still as agreeable as ever. She steps off ahead of him, but only by a measure and she paces her stride to his as best she can so they'll walk together. "'Course I sing at pubs," she says. "It'd be unseemly f'r me t'be at the billiards or cards tables." Women's lib has yet to raise it's head, but she adds, with a sparkle in her eye, "Though I do fancy a game of skittles now an' again. But only when it's proper." Of course. She's careful with the umbrella, not walking too close to Galen to avoid her prophecy of poking him in the eye.

As he walks, Gale pulls out a pack of cigarettes and sticks one between his lips. The pack, after smacking it against his hand to loosen the smokes, is offered out to Katie. "Eh, I prefer card games over skittles. But I suppose it could be entertaining if you add a price to it," he says, voice muffled by the cigarette. When he takes out the lighter, he covers the flame from the wind and drizzle, but once it's lit tucks it away and takes a long draw, releasing a plume of smoke.

"Cor, no," Katie declines the offer of the cigarette, her free hand up as if to ward them off. "Tried 'em once, an' I thought I was gonna cough my lungs out. Since I rather need 'em, I decided t'swear off fags." She looks amused at her own shortcoming. "I don't know very many card games," she admits, side-stepping to avoid a puddle on the sidewalk. "What, yeh mean wagering? Da would have a right fit if he thought I was even thinkin' about wagerin' money on a game."

Amusement slants against his lips, smirking as Galen glances at her. But he simply shrugs and draws coolly from his cigarette, looking briefly to the side as he releases the smoke slowly. "It does add a little excitement to a dull game," he points out simply. He glances at her again, staring at her silently before he mutters out, "Still doing what 'Da' tells you to do?" He shrugs carelessly. "You should wager on a game some time. You might find it 'thrilling.'"

"'Course I still listen to m'Da," Katie says, taking no offense to the comment. "Unless he's tellin' me something absolutely daft, anyroad. But I learn an awful lot from him." She turns her head, her grin settling on Galen as they walk, "Now yer the one talkin' daft. I work hard for every pence I get. I've far more t'do with it than lose it by wagering. Sure, some are lucky, but what if I'm not? All that work for nothin'."

Galen shifts his shoulders in another careless shrug. "Whatever," he mutters. He glances at her as he lifts the cigarette to his lips, watching her silently. As he turns his head to exhale, he lowers his hand as a finger taps the tip of the cig. He doesn't comment about wagering and losing, but simply asks with mild curiosity. "So what is it that you do?"

Katie is fairly good at reading people, you have to be in a public service job, and Galen strikes her as not one of the happiest blokes she's ever run across. The thought has her eyes lingering on him, her smile gone for a beat, replaced with a curious frown. When he looks up she shifts her eyes away, dropping them to the sidewalk and their feet. She nudges a stone out of the path as they walk. "I work in a chippy, th'family place. I'd normally be there still, but I took dinner over t'Mister Anderson. He's been doin' poorly lately." She pauses, then adds, "Likely he forgot his 'brelly." There's a quick glance over at Galen. "What'd yeh do then?" she counters.

Galen dips his head in a solemn little nod as she answers. "I see," he murmurs out. He takes another draw from the cigarette, exhaling. His laugh is short and simple, and his green eyes glance up warily at her umbrella. Cigarette lifting to his lips again as he lets his eyes roll over her, he smirks after releasing the smoke on a breath. "You've still gotten wet though," he points out. As she asks what he does, he gains an interested little smile, dipping his head. "Fun and games, of course - anything I want. Billiards, cards, dice…" He pauses to lift the cigarette and suck, letting it out. "It's more fun than waking up early and trying to keep schedule for getting to work."

"Not as wet as if I'd had no 'brelly," Katie points out logically. Still, her free hand comes up and rakes through her hair, judging just how wet it's gotten. "Cor, that's not even a mornin' dew," she laughs. There's a bit of a smirk at his information, and Katie ducks her head. "Well, if it works out for yeh." She's diplomatic, at least. "I don't mind workin' an' keepin' t'a schedule. Gives a purpose to every day, don't it?"

Galen lets out a groan in response to the schedule, making it quite clear his take on it. "I've got purpose," he utters out almost defensively. He lifts the cigarette for another draw, exhaling as his green eyes wander over the buildings. He merely shrugs back his shoulders as he glances back at Katie. "I guess we all have our preference," he states simply. "It's up ahead," he utters lowly. One corner of his lips twitches lightly. "If I get lucky I'll buy you a drink," he decides.

"Now, now," Katie says placatingly, "I'm not sayin' yeh've not one, I'm jus' sayin' that's mine." She puts her hand out from under the umbrella, palm up, and holds it for a moment. Then the hand is pulled back, inspected, before she closes the umbrella, tapping it on the ground as they walk to shake the clinging drops from it. "An' if yeh don't get lucky, I'll buy yeh one? Fair enough."

Galen gives a mild little shrug in response to her. He's silent as he takes another draw, walking nearer to the building as he studies the remains of the cig. "Yea, that'll do," he replies to her. He flicks the remains to the ground, crushing it underfoot as he reaches out for the door, opening it and standing to the side. "Hell, might as well make a wager of it," he utters out coolly, but with a hint of amusement as his lips twitch.

There's a laugh for the young man's last words, and Katie says as she breezes in past him, "I heard that. Ta," she adds with a nod to the gentlemanly holding of the door. Once inside she then steps aside, looking around but letting her eyes pass over Galen deliberately. "Yer right, this is thrillin'." She looks far more amused than thrilled, technically, and she doesn't make any attempt to hide her wide smile.

Galen follows her in, letting the door close behind him. Dropping his head briefly, he lifts a hand to shake a hand through his hair, which really only causes a mess of spikes. Both hands lift to flick at the collar of his coat on either side. His gaze sweeps over the billiard tables first, and he nods over at it. "If you played you'd find it even more of a thrill."

"I shouldn't like t'over do it," Katie notes with a smirk. "Surely this is enough excitement for one day. Don't let me stop yeh, though, cor no. I'll jus' be after havin' a pint, why don't I? I c'n watch whatever yeh choose t'play." Her umbrella gets deposited into an umbrella stand, with the confidence of the time that it'll be there when she leaves, and she unbuttons her raincoat. Beneath she's got on a simple flowered dress, not the latest fashion but good enough.

"Well, all right," Gale murmurs out, shrugging lightly. But he steps over to the bar, stuffing his hands into his pockets to find the money in his pocket. He counts it as he approaches, gauging how much to put up after buying a first drink. He orders an ale, tips his head and lifts the glass to Katie, and takes it over to mingle by the billiard table.

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