Log:Somebody's In Trouble

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Somebody's In Trouble

"It's sort of a fucking thing"


Poppy, Jake

1 November, 2019

Jake calls Poppy into his office to discuss complaints over drink seasoning



It's an hour before Alchemy opens, on an unremarkable day shortly after Poppy made her first bargain with the concept of the Sea Witch. Today her routine is interrupted by a text from Jake asking her to 'Come by my office when you have a minute.' The office door off the bar's back room is ajar when she arrives, and the proprietor can be heard talking on his phone. It sounds like the call is wrapping up, and Jake's tone sounds quite polite; probably a business call. "I understand. Thank you for letting me know. Yes, of course. Yes. Okay, have a good day. Good bye."

The siren is already downstairs, doing inventory; when she gets Jake's text, she doesn't immediately reply, instead knocking on the door a minute or so later. Poppy is dressed in her usual 'I'm working' clothing: black skinny jeans, a black spaghetti tank with the colorized version of the bar's logo on it, and a pair of black leather stiletto boots, zipped to the knee. Her hair is pulled up into a messy bun held in place with a pencil, and she's wearing a black choker with the silver, inverted-triangle pendant she owns. Once Jake finishes with the phonecall, she pushes the door the rest of the way open, leaning against the doorframe but not yet entering without permission. "What's up, boss?" she asks, arching an eyebrow. "Someone call out?"

She can hear the sound of his phone being set on the desk and then a soft sigh. The call is clearly over. Jake glances up as the door opens and then smiles when he sees Poppy. "Aha! Just the lady I was hoping to see." Despite the smile there's a serious, considering look in his eye as he beckons her to enter the office. He is dressed in a black silk dress shirt and stylishly faded blue jeans, with a silver, alchemical symbol necklace adding a little bit of color. "Not exactly. Come on in and grab a seat." Jake leans back in his chair and a runs a hand through his hair, leaving it just the right amount of disheveled. "How's everything going behind the bar?" he asks off-hand.

Perhaps picking up on that considering look, Poppy steps further into the office, closing the door behind her; her heels click on the floor as she makes her way over to the chair, sliding into it and crossing her legs, her usual slouch absent. At that question, she tilts her head, blue eyes attentive. "Pretty fucking decently; I need to restock some shit, but overall we're doing all right. Andy's working out pretty damn well; I may not need to be back there are much now that he's getting up to speed." A relatively neutral response; perhaps she's waiting to see if there's a more direct question.

"That's good," Jake responds to her news about Andy in an off-hand manner that does suggest the new bartender wasn't his main point of interest. He keeps his casual posture, half-reclined in his office chair, even as he gets to the point. "Here's the thing: we've been getting an unusual number of complaints the last few nights. I assume you've seen some drinks coming back. Any idea what's up with that?" He may be a little annoyed at having to deal with the issue but he seems more curious than upset.

Poppy tilts her head at that rather noncommittal response, waiting with equally-seeming casualness for Jake to get to the point. At that remark, she mms, the sound almost more like a hum, then nods. "Gotcha." The blonde seems to consider for a moment, then says, "Okay, so I'm going to skip over bullshitting you, because I respect you too much for that; I've been experimenting with salt seasoning. Clearly not everyone's a fan, and I apologize for the fucking complaints." Given that as assistant manager she likely has to deal with those kind of things herself, it's likely the expression is genuine.

Jake smiles, amused at Poppy 'skipping the over bullshitting.' He rocks forward in his chair to sit up. "Uh-huh." He sounds less amused and a little perplexed at the drink-mixing experiment. "I don't want to step on your creative toes here, but people have expectations, and I've got a bottom line to worry about. So can we stick relatively close to the recipe, please? It would make my life easier."

The blonde gives Jake a quick grin at that smile and amused look; as he rocks forward in his chair, she mirrors the movement, leaning in a bit herself, expression attentive. At his words, Poppy's expression turns thoughtful. "I mean, it's sort of a fucking thing for me right now." A bit of a sideways look that speaks to...something. Perhaps an 'I know something, you know something, let's dance a bit, shall we?' sort of thing. She grins again. "That said, people complaining to hell and back is a drag. I'll make sure that shit doesn't cause a problem."

"A thing." Jake echoes her words in an equally thoughtful way. Poppy's sidelong looks earns a cautious acknowledgement. "Uh-huh." He leans forward further still, elbows on the arms of his chair and fingers loosely steepled in front of his chin. "Okay, two things: first, if you're planning any experiments like this in the future, let me know in advance. Second, what exactly do you mean by 'make sure that shit doesn't cause a problem?'"

Poppy gives Jake a rather too-bland look at that echoed response, then tilts her head as he leans further forward, clearly waiting to hear what he has to say. At his remark about experiments, she nods. "Of course," is the agreement. That second question is met with a laugh, a hint of music to the sound. "I swear to fucking god, I'm not going to be knocking people over the goddamn head and telling them they have to like that shit or else. I meant that I'll make sure there's less of an opportunity for people to have a reason to fucking complain."

The man can't help but smile after he hears Poppy's laughter. "I trust you, Poppy, but I know life can get ... complicated. On the one hand ..." He unsteeples his hands to flip over his right hand, "I want to be an understanding boss." He repeats the gesture with his left hand, "On the other, I don't want to lose business or have to spend my days dealing with unhappy customers." Jake leans back again, adopting a more relaxed posture. "I prefer the win-win; everyone has a good time and goes home happy. Happy employees, happy customers, happy owner. Do we need to make some changes to make sure that can happen?"

The blonde gives Jake an amused look at that remark about life being complicated, but at least doesn't state the obvious, patiently waiting for him to finish speaking. "I can finesse that shit," she agrees, eyes glinting for a moment with humor. "After all, I make the fucking schedule most of the time, yeah?" Poppy folds her hands in her lap, possibly calling attention to the abalone-banded platinum ring she now wears on the fourth finger of her left hand. "Assuming you don't mind, of course."

"Finesse away," Jake says with pleased smile and small wave of his right hand. "I'll leave it in your capable hands." The ring, even with a subtle presentation, doesn't escape his attention. "Speaking of happy endings," Jake says as if reminded of something he had been meaning to ask, "did you and Duncan get engaged or something?" He lifts his left hand and wriggles his ring finger to indicate the evidence.

Poppy grins at Jake's response, tossing him a rather irreverent sort of salute. "Aye, aye, Captain." At that question, that grin turns into a warm smile. "Married, actually. We fucking eloped, because honestly, I can't handle the idea of being in the middle of a goddamn circus otherwise known as a fucking wedding." A sinuous shrug.

"No shit? Congratulations," Jake says with a warm smile. "That is a surprise, if not a total one. I can see the appeal of running away together to do it, but I'm disappointed we didn't get to give you two a proper send off." He gives a muffled chuckle, laughing to himself, then adds, "Not going to turn down a wedding present from me I hope?"

"No shit? Congratulations," Jake says with a warm smile. "That is a surprise, if not a total one. I can see the appeal of running away together to do it, but I'm disappointed we didn't get to give you two a proper send off." He gives a muffled chuckle, laughing to himself, then adds, "Not going to turn down a wedding present from me I hope?"

"Yeah, well, I've found that 'a proper send-off' is sometimes more like goddamn hazing than a celebration. You'll forgive me my fucking paranoia, I'm sure," Poppy replies cheerfully. At that offer of a present, she arches an eyebrow. "Pretty sure 'free shit' is a perk of getting married, as long as you're not going to go fucking Maleficent on us." Her eyes gleam impishly at that, perhaps appreciating the current situation.

Jake gives a polite laugh. "Would I do that?" He totally would. "I don't think I've ever seen Duncan drunk, now that I think about it. Does he just get larger and louder?" His smile dims a little at Poppy's joke and he gives a small shake of his head. "I was thinking something a little more mundane, like a toaster. Less potential downside for all concerned." Then he quirks a brow at Poppy. "Are you saying there is a first born in the works already?"

Poppy smirks. "His tolerance is...pretty fucking high. But something like that, yeah." The blonde grins at the suggestion of a toaster. "Got a toaster already, you might have to be a little more fucking creative." Her eyes gleam, then she snorts at the remark about first born. "Jesus fucking christ no. No kids." Giving him a sideways look, she asks, "Do you /really/ see me being that goddamn family oriented?"

"Now I'm curious," Jake says with a sly smile, followed by a nod for the wedding gift. "A creative challenge. I'll see what I can do." This is followed by an amused laugh for Poppy's reaction to the thought of children. "Honestly? No. But then I didn't expect you to run off and get married either. And the walls here aren't nearly thick enough to leave any doubt about who's doing what with who. So."

"I expect you can fucking manage the challenge," Poppy replies, then laughs at that comment about getting married. "Yeah, well. Kind of fucking surprised me, too, but weirder shit has happened." His remark about the walls is met with a slow smirk, too much for her to even attempt an innocent look. "Oh?" she asks. "Funny that."

"I shall do my best," Jake replies with glib confidence and a flick of his hand. Then he turns a more critical eye to Poppy as she admits the commitment wasn't something she'd planned for either. "Weirder than getting married? I should hope so." He gives a small smile that grows into a self-conscious laugh at Poppy's slow smirk. "Hilarious. At first I thought you two were joking around to get back at me for being too loud myself. Clearly I was mistaken. And no one's had to call an ambulance yet, so all's well that ends well."

Poppy grins at Jake's response about presents, then snorts at that remark about getting married. The laugh has the blonde winking at him, then she smirks. "Well. At first, some it might have been revenge fucking, but yeah, the rest of it is just us," she says frankly. "And yeah, no, neither one of us is likely to end up in the damn hospital. Maybe re-plastering a wall, but we'll pay for that shit if it comes up. We're not planning on leaving any time soon, anyways." A thoughtful sort of look crosses her face at that. "We've come a pretty long fucking way from the two of us painting the damn walls and me singing every night."

Jake lets out another quiet laugh and then wags his finger at Poppy in a teasing fashion. "Ha! I knew it." The admission of property damage earns a raised brow, but the man only offers an amused pause before deciding not to push for too many details. Then his smile widens as he thinks over the progress they've made on the business. "No joke. This place has come a long way, and I'm grateful for your help." His smile turns sly. "I mean, I /could/ have done it without you but that would have meant actual work on my part."

The blonde smirks at that raised eyebrow at the thought of property damage, but perhaps trusts to Jake really not wanting to know details of her sex life. As he shifts the subject, she grins. "Lucky I didn't get bored as shit and wander off, yeah?" Poppy's eyes gleam at that, then she glances down at her phone, checking the time. "Anyways. I'll make sure you don't get any more fucking complaints about drinks, but I should probably finish inventory before doors open. Anything else you need?" Her expression turns inquisitive.

"Luckily you didn't," Jake says with an easy-going smile. "We survived as a new business and both of us seem to have come out of it okay." He sits up so he can rap his knuckles on the faux-wood grain of his desk and intone, "Knock on wood." There's a pause when he sees Poppy check her phone, giving the woman a moment, and then he gives a mock-sigh for the reminder and a shake his head. "No, you're right. This place isn't going to run itself." He smiles. "Not unless you've got some Sorcerer's Apprentice level broomsticks you haven't told me about?"

Poppy gives a musical snort at that remark about the Sorcerer's Apprentice. "If you learned anything from that fucking piece would be that that sort of enchantment never fucking works out the way you think it will. Puritanical assholes aside." Blue eyes glint at that. "Besides, I wouldn't trust a goddamn broom to be able to tell if we're out of the expensive vodka." Pushing herself to her feet, she tosses another irreverent salute to Jake. "Catch you later, boss-man." A wink, then she starts towards the door, before slipping out.