(2018-11-21) Diamonds and Denim
Katya runs into Xavier doing some gift shopping at the mall and attempts once more to turn him on to flannel

Oh dear. It is the beginning of holiday season shopping, and some of the stores have tried to draw in crowds hungry for Black Friday a couple of days early. Which means it's busy, although nowhere near as busy as it's /going/ to get, soon. Xavier doesn't stand out as badly here as he usually does, and even has a couple of bags tucked into the crook of his arm and dangling from one hand as he moves slowly from one storefront to the next. He stops in front of a jewelry store, looking at the displays from the 'outside' courtyard area, the thumb of his free hand stroking back and forth across his lower lip as he thinks about the glittering jewels on display..

The mall was not one of Katya's favorite places. She hated crowds, she hated shopping, but she had developed a fondness for her next door neighbor, an elderly lady that had trouble getting around. So when she asked Katya if she could run an errand, Katya agreed - reluctantly. Still neon-pink eyes spotted Xavier as she exited one of the stores with a bag of her own. She couldn't help the fleeting look of mischief that crossed her features. She sidled up next to the man, looking at the jewelry with him. "You know, I think diamonds would really look good on you." Pointing to a necklace and earring set, while casually trying to peek in his bags to see what he may have purchased. Her own attire still the thick flannel and jeans.

Xavier jumps a little when she sidles up, his spine stiffening with perhaps more than the usual sort of reaction. He turns with a frown, although it only lasts a moment when he sees Katya. He takes a moment to study her eyes, giving her time to peek into the bags. The bag at the crook of his arm is obviously holding some sort of alcohol - from the cork-stopped neck that peeks above the paper, it is likely a wine. The bags hold small, boxed pastries of some sort, and a brightly colored cashmere scarf. He follows her point, and says, "It's a bit too sparkly for my tastes. Clashes with my shoes." Then he looks back at the bag she's carrying. "And what is that? Next week's supply of holiday themed contact lenses?"

Neon pink. Similar to a pink lemonade almost. That was the color of the contacts today. Katya made a thoughtful little noise as she looked at the contents and then grinned up at him. "Right. You're much more of an emerald guy." She agreed, pushing her free hand through her hair and then looked back at her back. "I wish. Just running an errand for my neighbor. Some kind of toy thing for her grandkid." And it did indeed seem like some kind of flashy toy that a younger kid would love. "But that's a good idea. Maybe I can find some ornament things…" She thought it over and then chuckled. "Buying some gifts for your girlfriend?" She asked, simply curious.

Xavier grins. "The color of money? I approve. I do like emeralds, as it happens, although onyx is easier to match with most men's clothes," he admits. "And that's very kind of you, to run such an errand. I was thinking Christmas trees. Imagine people's expressions while they try to figure out what's going on," he raises his fingers to gesture at his eyes. Her question brings a smile to his face. "Yes, actually." Then a hesitation. "I suppose. I don't know that we could be considered that, actually." His attention turns back to the display. "But she spends a great deal of time taking care of others, and I thought it might be nice to pamper her, instead."

"Yeah but black is such a…plain color." She shrugged as she looked back at the display. "Christmas trees…maybe." A giggle. "It would be wild. I'm going to have to look online and see what I can find. Not really any market for crazy contacts here in Cowboy Country. Anyway, yeah she's a good neighbor I guess. Reminds me of my own grandmother." She tilted her head slightly, looking back up at the man when he answered her question about the girlfriend. "Sounds complicated, but I'm sure she'll appreciate it."

"It's a classic color that coordinates well with almost any style and color," Xavier says, firmly. "It can be overdone, of course, but it's has elegance. Although I agree it's not quite as exciting as hot pink eyes." He winks, his tone teasing at the last. He looks down at his purchases with a slightly dissatisfied expression. "Perhaps. I don't actually know her preferences as well as I would otherwise like." He looks back up again, studying her. "And you, do you often find yourself being the knight in multicolored armor for elderly neighbors in distress, or is this unusual?"

"Not many things are." She commented lightly in retort about her eye color and then turned away from the display to face him fully, "But it's coming from a place of, I dunno…good will? Thought that counts and all. You've only been here as long as I have so…unless ya've been in a relationship with her for years and still don't know anything about her - in which case, end that shit - sounds like there's plenty of room to keep learning about her preferences?" She shrugged and looked back down at the toy with a laugh. "Not a chance. I'm a mostly private person. I don't get to know the neighbors and all that. Her trailer just happens to be really close to mine and she's always sittin' on her porch when I come home from work. Insomnia or something maybe. ANYWAY. I know her. And she's not terrible. So…" Another little shrug.

"This is true. They look interesting on you, though," Xavier says. "Very eye-catching, if you'll pardon the pun." He shakes his head. "No, this is definitely a recent encounter. Which usually isn't a problem, but most of the women I date are," he pauses, thinking of the right way to frame it, "interested in enthusiastic mutual use of each other for social gain, good press opportunities, and enjoyable sex. I don't think she'd appreciate a frame of the situation like that." His brow furrows momentarily, before it clears. "So you decided to help her. If it makes you happy to do so, then I'm glad. And I'm sure she'll be quite happy." He smiles, studying her. "Not a lot of close acquaintances in town, yet?"

"Thanks. Habit I picked up in New York." For various reasons, not entirely legal. "Somehow, that doesn't surprise me in the slightest." She looked amused as he explained his typical relationship. "Though I can't say it's /that/ terrible of a set up. If that's what you're into." Speaking from some kind of experience maybe. More on the enjoyable sex than the press opportunities and social gain though, likely. "Though, you'll never know unless you ask her…though if she spends most of her time helping others…and is from this town, yeah probably not her thing." Katya chuckled again. "If I told you that the three people I've talked to most -outside of working- are my neighbor, my boss, and you, does that answer your question?"

Xavier shrugs. "It has generally suited my purposes. I don't tend to stay very long in any one city, and it would be unfair to raise expectations I can't meet." He frowns back at the display. "I don't think I've seen her wear any jewelry, now that I think of it. Except a locket, and buying a replacement for that would likely tread on some emotional landmine." He studies the display again, impatiently, as if expecting someone to materialize out of the glass and tell him the perfect thing to do. No one does, and eventually he sighs, turning back to Katya. "That is not a lot of people, Katya. Not that I judge; as long as you're content with that."

Katya shrugs. "It is what it is. I don't do well with the whole deep, emotional ties thing. I move around a lot too. Kind of. Anyway." A wave of her hand and another smile. A little bit of a hint of sympathy as he seemed to internally struggle. "I think the scarf and the wine are a good start. You don't want to be overwhelming her and scare her off. If you care about her, or whatever." She shifted, wrinkling her nose. Obviously not used to this kind of talk. "Anyway. I'm thinking for our bet - you also need to wear the whole get up. Flannel, jeans, boots, cowboy hat." Change of subject, perfect. "Whatcha think?"

"I'm not wearing flannel," Xavier says, firmly, all thoughts of romantic turmoil immediately lost in the face of the far graver horror Katya has posed to him. "Jeans, fine. A hat…I could be persuaded. Boots, fine. But not flannel. It will make me look like an over-aged hipster, and I am already going to look ridiculous on that machine."

She gave him a set of puppy dog eyes and a little pout,"But flannelllll" She took his free hand and put her sleeve to it, making him feel it. "It's soft! It's comfortable!" Then she let him go and started laughing again. "What about a denim button down? All your shirts that I've seen are too expensive looking. You need the whole image. The shirt is everything." An emphatic nod. Deadly serious. "And maybe you will, but that's part of the fun!"

Xavier strokes the flannel briefly. "Perhaps, for pajamas, it might be suitable. But not for something I'd wear out in public. And definitely not denim. Denim shirts look like I'm about to go to a," a pained grimace, "a hoedown or some other folksy, down-home gathering where a whole pig cooked in half an oil barrel will probably be torn apart with people's fingers. I do not believe it's necessary to project that image to ride a mechanical bull. Or fall off of one, as the case probably will be." He frowns at her. "No flannel, no denim."

She gave him an exasperated look. "But you ARE going to a down-home, hokey, whatever!" Then she shook her head and smirked a touch. "Fine. Whatever. How about cotton, plaid?" Another offering. "Are you hungry? I'm hungry. Do they sell funnel cakes here?" She asked, rhetorical, turning and motioning for him to follow her. "Anyway, you have plenty of time to think about it. I don't think I'll be able to get my hands on a bull any time soon. Unless I give in and get on the mechanical one…and I refuse to do that." Not a hard refusal like his flannel and denim, but close enough.

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