5703/Quiet Evenings Are A Nice Thing

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Quiet Evenings Are A Nice Thing
Date of Scene: 24 March 2021
Location: 6A - Janet's Condo
Synopsis: A quiet night at Janet's condo includes talk about JFK, Hippies, Lex Luthor, and Steve trying to prepare for the possibility things may go sideways due to Hydra.
Cast of Characters: Steve Rogers, Janet van Dyne

Steve Rogers has posed:
The weather turned colder as a low pressure front blew into New York. The skies outside were grey, and rain had been falling intermittently throughout the day. Sometimes light mistings of rainwater, but also some hard downpours that left people scrambling beneath umbrellas to get into cover.

There are lightning flashes off in the distant west that promise a coming storm. Steve Rogers stands looking out one of the tall windows at the storm clouds that way. A book is set aside behind him, marker holding a page until Steve's return. The book is titled, "Kennedy and the Hippies", with the top cover of the book bearing a picture of JFK, while the bottom half shows a few flower children from the late sixties.

But for the moment he's just gazing out the window, enjoying the sight, the penthouse being so high up that it lets one see a long distance.

Janet van Dyne has posed:
Janet steps up behind Steve and leans her temple against his arm. One hand holds a coffee mug aside and out of spilling range. In the ultimate indulgence of the super-wealthy, Janet's apartment remains at a very comfortable 72 degrees despite the heavy weather rolling off the Appalachians west of the city. She seems quite comfortable in her calf-length kimono robe in pearlescent white.

"Whatcha lookin' at?" she inquires, and follows the direction of Steve's gaze to see if she can make out what his sharp vision is tracking. "Looks like it's gonna be a big storm," she adds a few beats later. The socialite takes a sip of her cocoa and drifts back towards her sofa and the tablet computer next to it. She finds her seat again and curls her legs under her so she can balance the tablet on her thighs and go back to skimming through social media.

Some people read media, like Steve. Others, like Janet, are consumers. Maybe it's just a generational thing.

Steve Rogers has posed:
The man's head turns as he feels Janet there. His mild expression turns into a small smile, and he reaches out to slip his arm gently around the smaller woman, giving her shoulder a gentle squeeze before letting her go as she heads for the sofa. "Just the weather," he says. "Seeing a storm like that from up here is always something... humbling?" Steve comments after pausing to find the right word.

"Being so near to the clouds. Really gives you an added respect for Mother Nature," he says as he turns his back to the window finally, watching Janet settle into her sofa, curling up something like a cat settling into a favorite spot.

He walks over to pick up his book and then move over towards the sofa as well. He's wearing a pair of blue jeans and a plain white t-shirt. Steve sits down on the floor rather than on the furniture, leaning back against it just in front of Janet. "This is an interesting book. I wish I'd been around to see John Kennedy as President," he comments as he looks at the cover. "That he inspired the youth to the degree that it drove a change in culture in the coming decades really speaks to what kind of leader people saw him as."

Janet van Dyne has posed:
"Huh, that's wild," Janet murmurs. She glances up at the storm but it doesn't seem to move her in the same way it does Steve. Then again, Janet is not one who is cowed by much in the way of things; natural or man-made.

When Steve sits she rests her hand on the nape of his neck and runs her fingers absently through his thick blonde hair, ploughing up furrows and smoothing them down with her nails.

"Hmm? Kennedy?" She tears her focus from the tablet and looks at Steve's book, then frowns. "Oh. I guess," she allows. "But that was a super long time ago, like... wasn't that the late fifties or sixties?" she hazards. "I guess we've had some other politicians like him since then. No Presidents, really, but some senators people rallied around. Where'd you get the book?"

Steve Rogers has posed:
The fingers brushing along his neck and through his hair, cause Steve Rogers to lean his head back slightly. Seeking out that gentle, soothing touch from Janet. "Mmm..." he murmurs, letting his eyes drift partway closed for a few seconds to just enjoy the sensations.

"Maury, at the mansion," Steve replies about the book. "I was in the kitchen while he was restocking the pantry and he had commented on the book," he tells Janet. If Janet doesn't know who he is, that would at least seem to make him a member of the mansion's kitchen staff. "It's interesting. They aren't necessarily pulling punches, I get the feeling. It isn't a romanticized version of Kennedy, as Maury had put it," he says, glancing down at the book.

"They spend a bit of time contrasting how he was viewed by people. Especially young people, versus his actions and how deserving he was of that view. But whichever the case, the means of his death and how it was handled after seems to have brought about such a rise in distrust of the government," he says.

Steve hesitates, giving a soft sigh. "It's nice to feel you can trust your leaders. Which makes me hate saying that something in my gut makes me a little wary of Lex Luthor."

Janet van Dyne has posed:
Janet snorts at Steve's sidebar. A beat later she looks up at him, blinking. "Oh you're being -serious-," she remarks, and turns a more attentive focus to him. "Well, yeah, Steve, you can't trust any elected leader. I've bribed enough of them myself to be able to tell you that. But-- I don't know, Luthor doesn't seem so bad, does he?" she hedges. A glass of wine nearby is claimed and she takes a sip from it. "I'm not saying he's a great guy, but even you have to admit that some of the stuff Superman says about him has..." she purses her lips. "well, there's some really personal beef between them," she points out. "And that's not to rag on Superman, I know you two are buddies," she clarifies hastily. "But it just seem so improbable that Luthor would be doing all this stuff he's accused of, and Superman's the only person who has caught him doing it?"

A brow lifts. "Plus, like I said, most politicians are pretty easily bought and sold. At least Luthor isn't gonna bypass the law because someone slips him some Yankee tickets or something."

Steve Rogers has posed:
Steve Rogers breaks out in a quiet chuckle as Janet realizes he was indeed being serious. "Yes. Well, at least, thinking about Kennedy made me think about the current landscape," he tells her.

The man draws a slow breath. "I don't know it is even any of those kind of rumors. Just something about his company. Not that I'm the best one to judge these things. Or, I don't know, maybe I am. Not used to the normal corporate soft shoe so maybe I don't take things for granted that people who grew up today do," Steve says.

He reinserts the bookmark and closes the book, setting it aside as he turns slightly to be able to look at Janet more easily. "When I look at how you run your company, or how Tony runs Stark? It just feels different. There's a... coldness to his company. Not just doing what makes sense to make money. Something, calculated?"

Steve sighs and holds up his hands. "I don't know. I really can't describe it. Just a gut feeling. And the man himself doesn't make me feel differently than his company does."

Steve reaches out, resting a hand on Janet's knee where her legs are folded. "So how are things going at JVD?" he asks.

Janet van Dyne has posed:
"Mm, honey, you might be overthinking things a bit," Janet says with a wry fondness. She runs her fingers through his hair again. "I mean, speaking of JVD, I can be pretty cutthroat. Everyone's got a different standard of ethics when it comes to corporations."

The tablet is set aside and she tucks on folded arm behind her head to support her neck. The wine remains balanced on the fingertips of her free hand. "Overall though, things are going pretty good. Bruce Wayne's son came by to get a dress for his... girlfriend?" she hedges. "Some cop from Bludhaven, or something. Great bone structure, but terrible posture. I wanted to put a book on her head and stand her against a wall. Maybe that's a cop thing."

Her other leg curls over to trap Steve's palm loosely between her knees. "Aside from that, the spring fashion schedule's at full go," she reminds him. "If you wanna go with me, I've got a few dates picked out for Europe. It'll be... Milan, Prague, sort of a soiree in Monaco for Jazmin Grimaldi, and then I'm skipping Paris and doing a stop in Bucharest. I felt like breaking with tradition this year," she explains.

Steve Rogers has posed:
Steve doesn't comment further about Lex Corp. He can't really put it into words himself. But then he's learned to trust his instincts too.

But he does comment when Janet as if he'd like to accompany her. "Of course. Just pick the destination you'd like to have me with you for the most," he tells her. "As long as nothing crazy is happening in the world, I'm yours," he tells her.

His thumb is still free, the rest of his palm and fingers caught between her knees. He rubs the thumb back and forth gently. "Speaking of, there might be some things I need to do," he says, and then pauses for a moment, clearing giving this some conscious thought. "Janet?" he says. "If you get a message from me I found a seafood restaurant we should try, then I may be away for awhile. And you should be very cautious about trusting anyone who comes looking for me," he says, blue eyes watching her reaction.

Janet van Dyne has posed:
Janet's eyes narrow and she sets her wine glass aside. "Nuh-uh-uh, don't you start this spy vs spy bullshit again," she tells Steve. Her tone grows downright frosty and she curls her legs back and away from under his grasp.

When Steve shifts, she holds both palms up sharply and shakes her head with a loud, negative grunt. "The last time you did this, it was for weeks. *Weeks*, Steven," she points out. "I'm not gonna sit back here twiddling my thumbs, waiting for you to figure it out. I have all the same national security clearances as anyone else at the Mansion," she reminds him.

"If you're 'away for a while', then your 'get out of town' plan is going to include me coming along. I get a message about meeting you at some restaurant, you can bet I'll be at the Drive-In Diner in Hicksville, and your happy ass -better- be there."

Janet glowers, arms folded. "With /flowers/," she adds, belatedly.

Steve Rogers has posed:
Steve eyes Janet's glowering disposition much the same way as he might have eyed a heavily fortified Hydra base during the war. And likely thinking his chances of success were better 75 years ago.

He draws a slow breath and lets it out. Then sits up on his knees so he can lean over towards Janet where the smaller woman is curled up on the couch. If she lets him, he brings his hand to the back of her neck, and leans in to press a slow kiss to her lips.

Steve pulls back then and says, "Alright. Though I'm keeping you out of it, unless it comes to that," he tells her, the man looking deeply into Janet's eyes. As always, he's transparent enough she can know he's telling her the truth.

Janet van Dyne has posed:
Janet grumbles and tries to fuss away, but her indignations seem more intent on making sure her complaint is registered firmly in Steve's mind rather than pressing the issue forward. "No, you--" Janet pushes her delicate fists back against Steve's collarbone with entirely halfhearted resistance, and the words are lost in the kiss.

"That's dirty pool," she objects, but her scowl is entirely offset by how dark her green eyes go when Steve breaks away. Fingers curl against shirt in a reflexive attempt to keep him from getting too far out of reach.

"Well, you do have two options," Janet proposes. Fingertips start dancing idle circles on his shirt. "You can get me involved from the get-go, orrrrr... you can expect me to just gatecrash whatever delicate government operation you've got going on. Very loudly, and with as much fanfare as possible." Her Perfectly Pleasant smile pastes itself insincerely across her lips. "How's that sound?"

Steve Rogers has posed:
At Janet's protest, Steve's eyes already reveal there is going to be a joke coming. "You aren't the only one that can be cutthroat," he at least claims. His smile grows at her reaction, hand moving to rest on her knee again as they talk.

A deep breath is drawn in and let out. "If that should happen, I'll try to bring you in. But Janet, and I'm being deadly serious. Very loud and fanfare would be the worst thing for everyone involved, including you. And me."

He reaches out and slips his hands about the slender indent of her waist, and draws her to him barring anything short of a biosting or shrinking out of his grip. A hand leaves her side to reach up and cup her cheek as those blue eyes of his look into hers. "Being away from you is the last thing I'd want. If it comes to it, I'll take you with me," he promises.

Janet van Dyne has posed:
"See? See how much easier this is?" Janet coos approvingly, and gives the hand on her cheek a pat. "Now I won't have to compromise your entire... mission thing, or whatever," she says with a cheery candor.

A giggling yelp slips her lips when Steve bodily hauls her closer, and she curls into him with a warm familiarity. A kiss is brushed against the tip of his nose and she curls an arm around his neck. "Besides, how much more fun would some crazy spy thing be, with me along?" she posits. A fingertip draws a line up and down the slope of his pectoral. "Drafty old hideouts, long nights of surveillance... and I am a hundred percent sure I could get us into any sort of fancy party that you need to infiltrate. I've even been upstairs in the White House while the President's family was asleep. You can really go anywhere with the right attitude," she points out.

Steve Rogers has posed:
Steve glances over towards the book he set aside to focus on Janet. "The White House you say? There's a chapter on a woman named Marilyn Monroe," he comments, his expression teasing enough that yes he's playfully insinuated what Janet might have been doing there.

His hand slides over to Janet's lower back, and then slowly upwards. Tracing over the slenderness of her torso. It isn't the first time he's done that, nor with that appreciative expression on his face. "But hopefully nothing like that comes of it. And we'll be able to find more enjoyable ways to spend our time?"

The peal of thunder can be heard, there having been low rumbles from the lightning in the distance. Though this one is far closer, and the sky outside the windows is looking quite dark by now, but for the ripple of light as electricity arcs through the crowd.

As if on queue, another loud crackle of thunder can be heard, and the lights go out. Leaving the silhouettes of Janet and Steve closer together. The man's voice murmurs, "Thank you, Thor," and then their silhouettes meld into one as Steve draws Janet to him for a deeper kiss.