Log:Golems and Hot Dogs

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Golems and Hot Dogs

The Meaning Of Shin


Billy Ray Johnson, John Preston, Gisa Cohen, Damion King


Hot Dogs and Golems In The Park


Frog Haven Pond

Yes, it's forty degrees out and a 'wee bit nippy' but there's no excuse - and never an excuse - to get out with your boys and grill and eat. There's a grill going with some simple grub on it - burgers, hotdogs, some chili sauce simmering in a pot, some onions, hot dog buns, 'the fixins'. A large cooler filled with beer, water, Gatorade. Currently Billy Ray - while the meat finishes - is sitting on a picnic table, waving around a cigarette as he talks to John - there's a Thermos nearby with two cups - smells like hot cocoa. What comes out of his mouth may be a bit reality bending.

"Now y'lissen here bubba," tells B-ray to his new friend. "Cause this is the kicker. In chemistry y'got yer basic set of reactions, of which thermite is onna them. Y'use it for weldin' and preppin' metal - to get 'em from their oxides. We use it t'make some bad ass incidinary grenades or rounds. Y'initiate the process with heat." A Hazel cafe 'write on it' crayon table mat is flipped over as the cigarette wiggles in his mouth, Billy scribbling on the paper. "Now you initiate the process first with some heat. But then, the beauty is, that sumbitch is self sustaining. Now, some Cadillac drivin' tie wearin' Ivy league would tell ya to use a strip of magnesium to initiate the heat but c'mon now, that's bush league. Plus, it ain't reliable. So what we'd use would be some Iron 3 oxide powder, yer basic FE two Oh three, mebbe fifteen grams of aluminum powder plus one gram for the rise of the South ag'in, some potassium permangranate powder - that's gonna kick 'er off but good, that's yer basic Kay Emm enn oh four..."

Offline time is a cherished part of Shabbos, and for Gisa, that means being offline and outside. Whether or not Billy Ray ran into her, she's here now, wending her way through the park. A heavy, practical black wool coat, a canvas messenger bag slung across her body, a black kerchief pulling her wire hair back: she has her hands in her pockets and is moving slowly through the park, along the edge of the pond. She moves like a mountain range -- slowly and assuredly across the face of the earth -- and the sound of Billy Ray's voice causes her head to slowly tilt up. The flames in her eyepits, and the sigil on her forehead, both briefly flare, and she changes the angle of her movement toward an intercept course.

John stands near Billy Ray, a beer in hand--and you can tell the difference in tastes between these two unlikely partners by the fact that John appears to be drinking some fancy-schmancy Belgian ale that a hipster could probably wax rhapsodic about compared to Billy Ray's Budwiser--and a cigarette in the other gloved hand. He's studying the paper curiously, saying, "It could work, I do not doubt your chemistry on -that- end. My question is: storage, heat, weather, humidity? I do not know the weather profile in Vermont well enough to guess what the best load will be. I figured it out from trial and error in Chicago, mind you, but that is one reason why I want to work with you: you likely know the equations already to puzzle that out, and perhaps you did some of that while living here before." As the...literal -golem- starts walking towards them, he arches a steep eyebrow. "Well, that is not something you see every day."

You don't have a build like Damion does by sitting around all the time. And while he has treadmills in his gym, running out in the fresh air is more enjoyable. The big Dragon currenly is jogging along the path from the rest of the park, some sweat standing out on his scaled flesh. How does he sweat with his skin covered like that? He honestly isn't sure. He's wearing a sweat shirt and pants, each with the name of his gym printed on it. On his feet are a pair of sneakers. He reaches the banks, stopping to take a breatha nd drink from a bottle of water hanging from the waist of his pants. Glancing around, he spots a pair of familiar figures standing together. and an unfamiliar one approaching them. He studies the meeting from there, takes another drink, then finally starts towards the three Lost.

Billy Ray nods to John, "Now humidity - weather, that we c'n handle wit' the proper casing. Storage, we'd want some specialized storage. The way the military does it, based on what ah can figger, is that they pair the incidinary portion wit' either a sabot - a tungsten hardened penetrator - or high explosive. Fer example, this could be super useful against vehicles - the sabot part drives through th' armor, the incidinary portion just sprays thermite an' copper all over the insides." He looks up, pausing to take a long draw from his beer, from his cigarette, and glances over and grins. "That's my friend Gisa, she's super cool. She has really good wine!" he tells his friend, waving to Gisa. "An' that big tall drink a' water, that's gotta be that Damion fella right?" He cups a hand around his mouth, "Hey y'all, come on over. We got cocoa, beer, food!"

She is, in fact, not something you see every day. Or every week, even, unless, one supposes, one was actually seeing her every day? Anyway. Gisa, on an intercept course with the conversing pair already, keeps moving until she's a little closer to them than American social spaces provide for. Maybe she just misjudged. Tipping her head slowly forward toward Billy Ray, she greets: "Shabbat shalom -- yes, still, friend." And John gets a nod as well. "I am Gisa."

"Shabbat shalom, Gisa," says John easily. "And welcome, please. Come, eat, if you do, or if not share in our company." He looks to Damion and says, "Ah, hello, Damion. Any news?"

Drawing up closer to the trio, Damion gives Billy Ray a nod of greeting. "Hello, Billy. I see no automatic gatling guns today." Then he nods to John in turn. "Hello, John. No...not yet." He takes a drink from his bottle. "I'm sure we'll hear something soon though. Nasty business." He glances at the grill and says, "So out having a barbeque huh? That's good." He offers a hand to the Golem and adds, "Damion King. Summer, Harvestman." The appearance of the Golem doesn't seem to phase him nuch, but then there are some really weird looking Lost out there.

"What's a Harvestman?" asks Billy. He'll slide from his seat and move to the cooler - "Requests for drinks?" he'll ask the group, getting beer, water, Gatorade as requested. Then he'll move to get John another beer, "C'n y'believe JP here drinks microbrew? Twelve dollars a six pack! That's basic'ly communism right there." he adds. He checks the grill, "Food's almost done, if y'all are hungry. Gisa an' ah met the other night at the Holler for the Freehold. She's good people." A grin at Damion, "No gatlin', jes' talkin' about fire rounds."

"Thank you. I will eat, thank you." Gisa's head bobs a little bit in thanks and acknowledgement. Those who have been around the Freehold for a while may know she's been a part of the Freehold for a while -- just left in October of last year and was gone longer than expected. She pauses, and her ceramic features rearrange themselves slowly into a frown when Billy Ray speaks, as if there's something he said that she isn't sure if it is supposed to insult or upset her. Or maybe she just doesn't understand him. After a moment, however, instead she turns slowly toward Damion. Her head arcs back and forth, and while it's difficult to tell what she's looking at exactly, she seems to be looking around an awful lot. Checking for nearby people, maybe. Finally, with a giant sigh that sounds like an oversized blacksmith's bellow working, she nods her head to Damion. "Gisa Cohen. I like sunrise." That's Elemental for subtle, that is.

John looks to Billy and says, "Well, I tell you, Billy Ray. If I drank what you drink, I would have to drink three times the beer to get the same effect I get from one of these," he says, "and I do not like the bathroom -that- much." He starts to put a dog together, with the fixins, and says, "I am of the Winter Court, and still waiting to be pledged, but I hope that will happen soon. And Billy Ray--just so you know, I have made contacts with the local ATF. It may well be that they can make certain things disappear from certain evidence lockers. I have always wanted to work with depleted uranium, but you cannot find it in the hedge." To Damion he adds, "That is a shame. I was hoping that if there were some missing, we would find out rapidly." To Gisa he asks, "Would you like me to fix up a 'dog for you? These are, er, Hebrew Nationals."

"It's a group within the Freehold. Guarding, scouting, that sort thing." Damion takes a gatorade from the Southern cyborg, cracking it open and taking a drink. "Mmmmf. I don't think you quite understand what communism is, Billy." He drops his hand when Gina doens't take it, one brow curving up. "Well, sunrises are nice it's true." He glances around to see what Gisa was checking out. It's not like a lot of people are out in weather like this. They're most likely the only ones in sight. He nods to John and frowns. "Yeah. I'm waiting to hear about that myself. I hope nobody else has been taken. And that we find who did it fast."

"It's true, ah did barely finish high school," admits Billy Ray good naturedly. He offers a beer to Gisa, and grins at John, "See, that's funny. Y'all done made a joke about my beer! But it was good enough for my daddy an' my grandpappy, it's good 'nuff for me. Bud was THE original microbeer, ah'll have y'know." A grin at the group. "Ah like sunrise too. So scoutin', guardin'. Huh. Mebbe ah'll talk to 'em. Tryin' to figger out where ah'm gonna fit in here - sides the business. See, John an' ah are gonna go into business together. See 'bout getting a Hollow workshop, combine our talents. He's got a super badass shop." A pause, considering, and he offers to Gisa, "Miss Gisa, ah'm gonne be honest. Ah'm jes' a redneck scientist slash inventor slash gunsmith slash beer lovin' American. If ah offend ya, ah truly don't mean it an' you can slap th' shit outta me if ah do, regardless. Kay?" A pause as he considers her build, and then Damions. "Mebbe like, y'know, PULL the punch a bit, y'know? Ah is tiny!"

"A hot dog would be nice. Mustard, please. Thank you." Gisa seems content to listen to people talking, rather than doing most of the talking herself. A statement bubbles up from her, apropos of nothing, but apparently it means something to her? "I grew up in a kibbutz." Thanks, Gisa? Did that mean something? Elementals. The shin on her forehead glows and ebbs as evening starts to gather, and she holds up a hand. "Excuse me." Three steps away from the group, and she turns her back on the three of them. Her head bows, and she folds her hands in front of herself, goes still as a literal statue. She's saying something, but it's very quiet, and her lips aren't moving. Like a tape playing inside her or something.

John Preston says, "You are also a teacher, Billy Ray. See, being with you has -already- done wonders for the prospect of my eventually evolving a sense of humor that does not come off like a computer's." He fixes a pair of dogs with mustard for Gisa, and sets them aside for her when she is done with what she is doing. He says to Damion, "I will fix you some dogs as well, if you would like; I did it for her first because I do not believe she can perform anything that is like labor until the sun sets. I hope I can help with this problem; murder is an ugly thing, and that woman looked quite young as well. The lack of blood is what I found the most disturbing--but I do not think that this is appropriate dinner conversation," he looks chagrined.

Damion lets out a little grunt and takes another drink of his gatorade. "I finished high school. I never did go to college though. I was boxing. Got into the big times, and...well." He shrugs and gestures at himself. Then he tilts his head as he listens to the redneck. "So you're going to be opening a weapons shop? Interesting. I'll have to check in there, if I ever need another gun. Or work done on the one I have. And yes. If you're interested in helping protect the Freehold, you should speak to the Captain. Jonah." He smiles down at the rather diminutive scientist, and reaches out to pat him on the shoulder. "Don't worry. I won't hit you unless you really deserve it. And I'll be sure not to break anything to badly." He considers Gina. "I'm sorry Gina, but I don't really know what one of those is." He watches her turn away from them and...start praying? He shifts in place a little then says to John, "Well...one wouldn't hurt I guess. Mustard, ketchup." He takes another pull of his drink, then glances around for the nearest trash can, tossing the empty bottle in. "Yeah. Not really dinner conversation. Still...it would be best if everybody is aware there's danger and to keep a sharp eye out. Try not to travel the Hedge alone."

"Ah won't travel alone," promises Billy to the others, and a grin at the John, "Indeed, JP. That's TWO jokes in like, three hours. Y'kickin' it but real, bubba!" A grin at the man and he will follow John to the grill to get a burger - onions, pickles, ketchup and mustard, cheese. Then two hot dogs - chili, cheese, onion, mustard, and a pile of Doritos before he settles down. "Ah don't know what a kibbutz is," he says carefully. "Ah'm guessin since she says she grew up there, some kinda school or village or somesuch?" he asks. A nod to Damion, "Ayuh. JP's done got an amazing shop - all the tools a gunsmith c'd want, plus a forge. And ah can do blades - tokens, Hedgespun, an' between the two of us we c'n do jes' about anything y'need done to a firearm. Huh, mebbe ah'll look up this Jonah, see if'n he needs an armorer."

Once whatever the quiet thing she was saying -- playing? -- is complete, Gisa turns around, rejoining everyone as if she hadn't just stepped aside to... pray, maybe. Picking up her hot dogs, she tips her head toward John. "He is right. Thank you twice, friend." Then she says something else quietly, again with the Hebrew. Probably saying grace over her food of some sort, because her attention appears to be focused on that. "Kibbutz. Communal living. Shared resources. In Israel." Her shoulders rise and fall like a mountain range, and she takes one slow bite of her hot dog. For the first time, she smiles, content, apparently, with the food. If she heard all the bits about blood -- and that may or may not be -- she doesn't act like she did. "Never the Hedge alone," is all she agrees.

John makes a couple of dogs for Damion, and adds: "As Billy Ray said, I have opened a firearms shop, as well as a shooting range. We both can make firearms and other things from scratch. He can make tokens; I can weave garments," he gestures to his hedgespun coat. Then he pauses and says, "I do not mean to sell or sound like a salesman, I am just excited as construction and building recently completed." Then to Billy Ray, he says: "Kibbutzes in Israel are almost like Hollows in some places. Carved out of wilderness no one in their right mind would ever wish to live in and turned into wonderful and thriving communities."

Damion nods to Billy Ray, "Good to know. I'll bring my weapons there if they need work. My armor isn't technically speaking made of metal or anything. It's dragonhide and scale. I don't know if you could help with that or not." He walks over to the cooler, bending down to take another bottle out of it. "I don't know if he already has an armorer for the Harvestmen or not. It certainly couldn't hurt to ask. Even if he does, having multiple people capable of doing that sort of thing would be good." Then he considers the wods from Gisa. "So like a commune. I'm curious how you went from there to living in Vermont." He takes the hot dogs from John, and bites one in half. "Mmm. I understand. My gym just opened recently, and I find myself bringing it up a lot too. Incidently, I have a gym. You three are welcome to stop by anytime. I tend to let the membership fees slide a bit when it comes to other Lost."

Billy-Ray inhales one chili dog, wipes his mouth, a handful of Doritas, neatly, and a few long draws of beer before he answers Damion and John. "Oh cool. So like, a self sustainin' kinda thing. In wilderness - that's cool. That's super cool actually! And that does sound like a good story, if'n y'can tell it, Miss Gisa," says Billy Ray. He inhales half of another chili dog, wipes his mouth and nods to Damion, "Ah'll reach out t'him. And dragonskin an' scale ah can help with. It's not my speciality but ah can at least check it out fer ya. Blades - swords, an' firearms, that's mah bread an' butter, so to speak. And sure. Ah don't exactly got uh, y'know, the guns fer arms an' all that. Mostly the workout ah do is a tallboy of beer, know what ah mean?"

"Mazel tov!" An exclamation point, from Gisa. Amazing. She raises her food toward John and Billy Ray, as if she's lifting up a drink. She has a hot dog in each hand, so, no drink right now. "I do not use guns, not really." One of those slow, mountain range shrugs, her shoulders up, her shoulders down, and the shin on her forehead glows all the brighter as John acts once more as her translator. "Yes. Communal living." Her face is pointed toward Billy Ray, even though it's tough to tell exactly where she's looking, it's probably at him. Damion's question has her stopping for a second, going very still, and she answers, after another one of those big bellows-like sighs. "I came here after the Shoah, after I came back. Was caught here for a while, because of the War for our Existence. And no papers. Then I got dual citizenship, because we have a Nation. Now I go back and forth. Dawn requires travel." One can hear her pronouncing capital letters in there.

John says, "I will likely take you up on your offer, Damion; I could use a good workout from time to time to keep fit." He looks to Gisa and says, "It is good you are here. I can see why you would not need a firearm, however. Did you serve in the Israeli armed forces?"

Damion nods to Billy. "I'm sure that Tini will stop by at some point. She seemed interested in my gun." He polishes off the first hot dog, takes a drink, then continues. "I'll be sure to stop by sometime just to see what sort of set-up you two have over there." He reaches out gives the short scientist a pat on one skinny arm. "Never too late to start improving yourself, Billy." He turns back to Gisa. He doesn't know the word Shoah, but in context he thinks he can guess what she's refering to. He's never heard it called anything buta Durance before, though. "I see...." He's quiet for a few moments, then nods to John. "I'll keep an eye out for you."

"Does everyone have to? Ah thought they did," says Billy Ray as he finishes his beer. He plows through the second chili dog and slows down on the burger and the rest of the chips, eying the rest of them. "Yep, Tini and ah go way back; ah made her an item - an endless bag like thing." A nod to Gisa, "Well, ah'm glad yer here, Gisa. Seriously, and ah mean that. Y'and Damion there, y'all are huge folks - and little dudes like me need every big person we can find to help protect us!" An easy grin. "So as much as ah don't really, y'know, pray and all that, ah'm thankful that yer here. Ah truly am. Plus, you have kickass beer and y'know the benefit of not talkin' all the time. FOr someone that never stops talkin', that's totally awesome!"

"I will come to your gym," Gisa assures Damion, as if he were worried about this exact fact. "It is good to work. But not on Shabbos." A brief flash of her marble-white teeth. She finishes her first hot dog as the stars start to come out above, and queries, "May I have a beer? I have mustard on my hand." Her head creaks toward John, and shakes slowly. "I was here in 1948. And 1969. And it is not ... good... to be in the armed forces as one of us. I think. It is too dangerous for secrecy." Practically an essay for Gisa, that. Her eyepits glitter, then. "Tini from yesterday?" Beat. "I need a better bag." She looks down at herself -- Gisa is only five and a half feet tall, almost a foot and a half shorter than Damion. Billy Ray calling her 'big,' even though she is very sturdy, seems to blatantly confuse the Elemental. "Where are you from?" Maybe that's for Billy Ray. His accent is a thing, after all.

John says, "Shoah is the word Jews use to descibe the Holocaust," catching Damion's moment of confusion. "An endless bag?" he asks Billy Ray. "Like a Brownie Bolthole?" To Gisa, he hands her a napkin--and a beer. "I am from lots of different places, myself. Military brat."

Finsihing his second dog, Damion washes it down with the last of his gatorade. That goes into the trash as well. "She mentioned the bag. It sounds interesting. I imagine it wasn't easy to make though, no?" Then he smiles at Gisa. "Come if you want to, hon. I'm not trying to force anybody." He glances at John, and grimaces. "Ah...right." Well, that's even more awkward than a Durance. "...I have to say Gisa, you look rather good for your age." He was barely into his mid-thirties himself. At least going by human time. God only knew how long he actually spent in Arcadia.

"Ah, 'kay," says Billy Ray to John. Done with his burger he wipes his mouth and takes a sip from his beer, nodding to Gisa, "Ah was born in Georgia, in Columbus - outside Fort Benning, an Army base where my daddy worked. In junior high we moved here," he gestures, "Ah was always into gunsmithing - trickin' out guns, pullin' the last bit'a performance from 'em. Ah was taken 'round ten years ago in Georgia. Far as ah can tell - y'all know how this is - ah was there 'round a century or so. Then managed t'get free, barely." A grin at Gisa, "Ah got whatcha call a redneck accent, Miss Gisa. True Southern pride," he tells her with a laugh. "But ah'm told that ah can be uh, what's that fancy pants college word, indeci-ferable or whatevers?" he asks. "We say y'all instead of yours, and reckon, and use words like 'bubba'."

Billy Ray adds to John, "Ayuh, endless bag. Basically, it's kinda complicated, but y'can tie it to a tiny portable holl'a space and thus you can use an exponential growth algorithm - so say a hip bag mebbe has enough space to load like, ten thousand cubic inches," he adds.

"Yes. I was not here." Gisa's brain seems to be stuck on that for a moment, whatever that exactly is. Probably the Shoah that John just explained. "Thank you again. You are a mensch," she pronounces toward John, as if conferring some sort of award to him. For a napkin? Maybe. She wipes her hand down, cleaning the mustard off, and then takes the beer, her hand clinking against the glass of the bottle. "Well I speak Yiddish and Hebrew. But not redneck. I will endeavor to learn." First that to Billy Ray, then a swallow of beer, and then to Damion: "Thank you. I moisturize."

Was that... a joke?

John says, "I apologize, but I must go. Please enjoy the rest of the beers and the evening, my microbrews might sate more than his Budwisers, but everyone has their own tastes." With that, he says to Gisa, "I will see you soon, I hope."

Damion tilts his head. "That sounds useful. I might think about ordering something like that from you someday." He crosses his arms over his chest. He gives Gisa a broad, black-fanged grin. "It shows." Then he nods to John, "Take care of yourself, John. I'll see you around the gym, alright?" Then he turns back to the other two. "I should get going soon myself. I have things I need to do back at The Iron Church."

"Seeya, JP," Billy Ray tells John, and grins at Damion. "Sure thing. Good t'see ya, Damion. Ah kinda need more strength in order to like, haul around equipment an' whatnot - my table can't carry it all. So ah may be seein' you soon," he adds. A grin at Gisa. "Ah don't speak Yiddish or Hebrew so ah'll try to learn both as best ah can," he tells Gisa. "Those hotdogs are good, amirite?" he adds with a grunt and a grin.

The shin on her forehead glows at the compliment and the grin that goes with it, and the flames in her eyepits flicker and spark. Apparently golems aren't immune to flattery. "Of course. They are Hebrew National," Gisa points out, and she finishes her second hot dog, and her beer, with the efficiency of someone who learnt to eat quickly and get on with life, once upon a time. "I do not feel pressured to come to your gym," she assures Damion. "But I will be there." Wiping her hands off with her napkin, she begins to clean up. After all, it's after sundown. Now she can help, so the golem goes back to work, starting to tidy up after the ad hoc dinner. "I was glad to eat with you, and I will teach you if you want, Billy Ray. Hebrew is easier than English." When it's your native language, maybe...