One for the Ladies
One for the Ladies
Summary: Sasha comes to the Destiny's private club looking for work, and ends up in an audition onstage with a judges' panel at the bar.
Date: 80 ACH
Related Logs: None

OOC: It's said that this is the new mascot for any Corinne and Evan log.


Private Club Destiny - Deck 9
80 ACH 23817 Souls

This is, or was, a private men's club aboard the cruise liner. Simple, yet effective. Low lighting, with a tinge of gold, sets the scene as scantily clad women move about. Yes, this is a strip club. Booths surround the walls, while small tables litter the rest of the room. To one side, a long bar is set, while across from it a cresant moon catwalk, complete with poles on the stage, and stools next to it, allows the customer to see the lovely ladies dancing.

In the back, across from the hatch leading out, is a curtained doorway, leading to the back office, as well as a few private 'VIP' rooms.

Please read +lhelp rating

Nicholas sweeps into the lowlit club, skirting around most of the tables. Recognition of a few faces here and there, who he pauses briefly to greet but doesn't stick around for. He has a small table he's heading for, out of the way of the patrons' view of the stage and the other goodies to stare at in here.

Andi seemed to have been checking out the club with Jarred, if only to get a feel for the place and spend some money on some over priced beers. "Yeah, next time. I imagine I'll have to audition or sommat, and I didn't precisely dress the part." She snorts, an indelicate thing, Andi's no pale flower considering. "Leading on." She tells him quietly, slipping out.

Seems like the pair of pro pyramid players are just on their way, judging by the looks of the empty drinks and the moving away from the bar. Jarred's offering a smirk and a chuckle, his shoulders shrugging ever so slightly, "Ya, no doubt. But, we can fix the clothing part, easily enough." Then, he's falling quiet, letting her lead on and following her out.

Andi leaves for Passage [O].
Andi has left.

Sasha is something of a regular here. Which is to say, he's been seen on occasion, smoking a cigarette and watching the women (and the men), and ordering absolutely nothing to drink. He saunters in this evening and absently checks to see who's on stage as he makes his way toward the bar.

Jarred leaves for Passage [O].
Jarred has left.

Paris comes in from Passage.
Paris has arrived.

Nicholas almost makes it to his table. He's passing by a corner of the bar when one of the tenders lifts a hand to get his attention, and he turns back with a raised brow. His hands set on the counter and he leans on them, waiting. The bartender digs under the lip of the bar and comes up with a typewritten sheaf of paper and what looks like a few photographs of a pretty blonde woman clipped together, muttering something as he hands them over. Nick leans a hip against the bar, ignoring the paper for the moment as he looks over the pictures. The blonde's doing her best in them to look like she can be good friends with a pole. "Oh, you have got to be kidding me."

Paris saunters in, looking all too pleased with himself, and all too happy to be visiting this particular den of sin. Who wouldn't be? As he ambles, he checks out the women -very- visibly, head turning when a waitress passes, eyes -dropping-. Ahem. "Hey baby," he greets one of them as she says hello, plying her trade, but he doesn't stop for her. Not yet - he's gotta get some liquid refreshment. Belly up to the bar, and a quick order.

Nicholas' gray eyes lift from the photos, one slender brow lofting into an arch. His eyes look over Sasha from head to foot and back with pointed slowness. "Well isn't everyone just a barstool critic." There might be amusement underneath the catty. Maybe. He squares up the photos on the counter and picks up the paper sheaf, giving it an uninterested glance-over. One hand sets on the bar counter, tapping a small silver ring on his index finger against the faux dark wood, and he lightly sucks his teeth. "Paris," he calls past Sasha's shoulder. "Come here and tell me if you'd frak this woman."

Oh? He's been spotted. The shaven-headed freighter-jock looks up, turns a bit, and eventually cranes his neck past a passing lady. It takes a fair bit to get him to look -past- a good looking woman, so that means something. "Hey Nick, what's up. Eh?" Ok, that's something he can offer a useful opinion on. Without much pause, he picks his drink up past the counter, and starts down the bar, past Sasha - who he gives a once-over typical of someone used to watching their back - and toward Nicholas. "For free, or like one of your girls? Makes a bit of a difference." Presumably the free version lowers the standards somewhat. When he's close enough, he'll give the pictures a quick look. "Yeah, I'd give her a go. Looks good once you get past the Aerelon farm-girl thing she's got going on."

"Strangle might be the wrong word," Sasha amends, elbow settling back against the counter so he can get a better look at the blonde wrapped around a pole. Lacking a better term for whatever the hell she's doing with it, he lifts his eyes in time to catch the tail-end of Nicholas' pointed gaze. "Hey." It's meant to catch his attention, but he's off asking someone else about his sexual preferences. "Hey," he tries again, rapping the knuckles of his cigarette-hand against the counter. "You do the hiring around here, right?" He's from Aquaria, that much is blatantly obvious.

"I don't like the Aerelon farm girl thing." Nicholas wrinkles his nose at Paris' opinion, with a loud sigh. "I don't want someone who looks good naked on a wheat thresher. I want someone who can beg diamonds out a man just by rolling around on the floor. This is not it." He sets the paper and photos down and pushes them away with his fingertips, as though disgusted by the thought of touching them with much more than that. Sasha receives another arch of brow. "I'm not sure who this 'Hey' person is, but he certainly doesn't hire anyone. Now I know you didn't come in here looking for work and not even take the time to ask what my name is."

"Man, I got raised in a frakking dust-choked tyllium town. I know I'm not exactly a beauty queen now, but point is, I sure as shit wasn't flying anything then." Maybe the actual point, that he fails to properly communicate, is that 'people change'? Who knows. "Get her a couple pretty outfits, let the other girls teach her whats what. I'm just sayin' that underneath, that's not a bad looking woman." He smirks. "Plus, the surviving remnants of huamnhity cuts down your choices, yeah?" When Nicholas still seems set on his opinion, Paris just chuckles a bit. He's not going to press the point. In fact… "Gimme her address then, if you don't want her, eh?" Perpetually lacking in seriousness, it seems. He too, will then become curious of the fellow further down, making a clamor for attention, turning to peer that way.

Sasha pauses a moment at that. His cigarette's held, still smoking, in his right hand, and there's a dawning little smile on his lips as he watches Nicholas carefully. "Okay." It sounds amenable enough. "Okay, my name's Sasha, s-a-s-h-a, what's yours? I've been by here a few times, but you're-" A waitress bustles up to the bar and interposes herself directly between them, as she leans over to load up a few drinks on her tray. She's briefly watched, but Sasha seems more interested in Nicholas at the moment, and leans around her to finish speaking. "-you're usually busy, when I come by."

Nicholas lofts an amused brow at Paris and, instead of pushing the paper back towards the tender, flicks it at Paris instead. Along with one of the pictures. "There you are. Something to jerk off to as well. Free of charge." He smiles, then looks back at Sasha. The waitress doesn't even warrant a glance. "You're literate. That's heartening. My name's Nicholas Luma. I hire the entertainment, so if you're here about bartending then go talk to Roy over there." His chin lifts, indicating the burliest of the bartenders with a rather graceful motion of his head.

"Heh, thanks. Should be good for the next long trip," declares Paris, as he takes the pictures. He must have a fetish for the farmgirls, or something. Of course, there are some other problems: 'Long trip'? Where is he going -these- days? Its a bit of self-delusion about the new state of reality, most likely. Regardless, after he's tucked away his new acquisition, he lifts and puts away that shot he brought with him. Ahh. All the while, he stands just to the side, not making much of a secret over eavesdropping on the conversation Nick is having. Of course, he's not really -that- interested, just idly curious, and he finds himself distracted as another one of the women goes by. "You're lucky today Nick. I sold some product and have a fistfull of cubits for the ladies."

Evan has arrived.

Sasha tucks his tongue against his cheek, and gives a short little laugh. Maybe it's the 'reading material' that amuses him, or maybe something Nicholas said. "I know how to make a pretty good bloody caesar." He drags from the cigarette, barely a flick of his eyes when Roy is mentioned. "But the only work I've ever done in a bar, was cleaning up spilled drinks, broken glasses and vomit at two in the morning." He keeps the smoke between two fingers, and rests his chin against his palm. Dark eyes stay steady on the man, Paris and his imaginary voyages ignored for now. "You looking for anything else, Nick?" There's a grin close on the heels of that too-familiar 'Nick'.

Corinne comes in from Passage.
Corinne has arrived.

"Really." Nicholas regards Paris with a slight grin. "Congratulations. You know, I have someone that I think you'd like to see…oh, and we need to talk." An index finger's raised there, signaling that as an Important Conversation. And then he's looking back at Sasha. "Possibly…'Sha." Nicholas returns the use of nickname with one of his own, though it's delivered in decidedly catty fashion. And sans grin. He gives the young man another lookover, eyes rather lingering in places. "I just told you I hire entertainment. Do you…entertain?"

It's not too much longer until a tall, almost Amazonian, woman steps into the club. She walks with the steps of someone who's familiar with the venue, intimately so. It's a quiet confidence which surrounds her.

Paris is still keeping idle tabs on the conversation Nick and Sahsa are having, just 'cause. Otherwise, he ambles over to Nick's far side, puts his finished shot glass down, and leans back to the bar, admiring the passing ladies for a bit, window-shopping, albeit with the apparent intention to buy. "You know me, I never mind giving you a little business when my fortunes are good. Its a great place you run." A beat-long pause. "New girl?" He's not dumb, even if he's occasionally strange. The latter point is of greater interest, most likely, although Paris is a cool enough customer that he doesn't make a big deal of it. "Sure, just lemme know when you got a sec."

Sasha gives his cigarette a little twirl between his fingers, as if to indicate 'this and that'. "I have." Smoke's pulled into his lungs, sifted out through his nose. His smile's a little feline. "I could." There isn't too much to see, at the moment. He seems to have gone to some effort to hide himself in loose-fitting, less than flattering clothing that give only a hint of the lean frame lounging beneath.

"Well, make up your mind," Nicholas says mildly to Sasha. That seems to close the conversation for him until the younger man follows that guideline, and he rests a hand on the counter. Evan's appearance has been noticed, and it brings a nice smile to his face. "Lioness," he calls towards her. "Hello, my dear. Don't you look nice." He tips his head, commenting to Paris. "Yes, this is her. The Lioness, as she is onstage. She's dazzling up there."

Corinne has that 'just woken up' aura about her. Her hair is pulled back into a delightfully mussed half ponytail, half bun type concoction that conveys the lazy confidence of someone who feels they don't have to work all that hard to look good. Ger clothing is casual, and her makeup is subtle - she's definitely not getting anywhere near a stage tonight. Good thing, too. She looks a little hungover, maybe. "Roy. Fix me up." She slides into a stool at the bar and leans her chin into an open palm, elbow on the surface.

Evan saunters in, prowling over toward the bar and Nicholas, a small, serene little smile on her lips. "Good evening, my dear," she says, approaching poor Nick. Leaning in, she brushes a kiss in the vicinity of his cheek. "And who do we have here," she asks, looking over Paris and Sasha. "New friends to play with? Or are you recruiting new victims for Her Highness. I've heard that virgin blood is necessary to keep everything…in shape." There's a razor-sharp little smile on her lips when she says that. "Though, I hear she killed the last one. Shame, that."

Paris glances back, as the Sasha-Nick exchange goes another direction. "Just don't ask me to look at any photos of him, Nick." Its back to watching, but then, again, Nicholas gets his attention, if only for the purpose of directing it at someone else, this newly-arrived so-called 'Lioness'. The freighter jock turns to look at, and then more properly eye, the woman as she nears. Mmmmhmmmm. Although his reaction is somehat… special: "She's huge!" Well, taller than him. Which apparently kicks her up that size category in his head. Still, this does not, apparently, intimidate him much. Instead, he grins wide. When she asks who 'they' are, he is happy to self-introduce. "Hey there, I'm Paris. So you're Nick's newest? I gotta say, he really can pick 'em, even if he doesn't appreciate a good cornfed Aerelonian girl when he sees one." That last bit is probably utterly baffling to anyone who wasn't in the room earlier. And, at some point, as Corinne passes, he just gives her a kind of friendly smile and nod of greeting. At least, before there's talk of her killing people. "She did what now?"

Sasha purses his lips a little at the dismissal. And there's Nicholas, getting busy again. His eyes flit toward Evan, flit toward Corinne easing into a seat at the bar nearby, and flit back to Nicholas. "Hey, look. Could you-" He sighs, and ditches his cigarette, fingers splaying on the bar between them. "Do you want pictures, or something? I can get you pictures-" Evan strolls up about then, and he breaks off, and pulls away. Frustration.

Nicholas puts up with being air-kissed as only a man with his fashion sense really can, giving the space by Evan's face a mild little one in return. "Darling, don't be bitchy." The chiding goes flat as he's obviously amused. "This is Paris, a good friend of mine that you may wish to know…well." He notices Corinne then and turns around, holding out a hand towards her. "Corinne. My it's early to be seeing you. Couldn't sleep?" He smiles at the songbird and then finally, after making Sasha wait through that whole exchange, he looks back at the man. "No, I can see quite fine what you look like. If you want to entertain here, you'll show us you know how to entertain. I have two lovely ladies here who are well suited to be my judges." He gestures with a long finger towards the front of the room. "There's the stage." That's delivered to sound like a little challenge.

"I probably shouldn't have let him snort coke from my navel right before he went on his little flyboy mission," Corinne laments, rolling her head towards Evan, and then Paris. Hey, if you're going to be accused of being a black widow, you might as well embellish a little, right? She reaches for the glass of bourbon as Roy finishes pouring it, then slides off the stool to stand at a lean up against the bar. "I've been in mourning all day for…" She flicks her gaze at Nicholas. "What did you say his name was? Arm…" She at least pretends to look concerned that she's forgotten. The affected look of thoughtfulness fades as she listens to Nick speak to Sasha. Who is that, and how old is he?

"Mmmm," Evan murmurs, smiling sweetly at Corinne. "I've heard grave dust will do that to a man, even a good one." She dips her head to Paris, studying him for a time, before she offers her hand, palm down. Sasha is briefly considered.

Paris can't help but let out a laugh. Its not a -huge- secret that, given his occupational interests, the freighter pilot is not a great fan of the Colonial Navy. Nevertheless, he offers Corinne a bit of playful scolding. "You gotta watch that, babe. Put too many of 'em out of comission, an' we might end up toaster food." They'd turn into… bread? And then, utter nonsense, "I wonder if cylons like strip clubs?" If he only knew. Ok, now there's Ms. Tall Drink of Water. Hand? What, since when do strippers shake hands? Oh! Right, the whole suave thing. He lifts it, and actually gives her the expected kiss. He… can manage, actually, when he's not acting like a basket case. "My great pleasure to meet the lovely lioness." Big grin. He has a nice smile, if the rest of him is kind of… so so. And then there's the matter of this up-coming show. "Say, Nick, if the ladies are gonna be judging, maybe we should take the opportunity to chat about whatever it was?" Yeah. He really doesn't want to watch Sasha shake it. No offense!

Sasha is patient, that much can be said for him. Patient, possibly only by dint of desperation. Elbows on the bar, gaze focused somewhere between them, Nicholas' voice catches him in the midst of this introspection— and his challenge visibly has the young man's heart doing a violent -thud- of protest. A little flummoxed, he looks between said lovely ladies. Evan, to Corinne, and back to Nicholas. That look? It's called shooting daggers. But Paris and his preferences can take a hike, as Sasha's pushing slowly to his feet. "You got it," he mutters at the erstwhile manager.

"Who, Armedes?" Nicholas regards Corinne with a sudden 'ooh, what?' look on his face. He glances at Evan, lofting a brow, then back to Corinne. "What, he's dead? Oh, my. Trashy luck, that." He doesn't sound particularly upset. "Well look at it this way, after you? He'd have spent the rest of his life disappointed in everything that came after. And that's no way to live." He sniffs and looks back at Paris, chuckling under his breath. "Well, they're judging. But I'm hiring. I am noble enough to at least watch an audition." Somehow it doesn't sound like it's breaking his heart to say that. "Besides, business is best done when I can concentrate. I do owe you a couple drinks, we can grab them right after. If you need something to bleach your eyes, just…" He gestures to Corinne's backside. "Look there." He turns his back to the bar and rests his elbows on the counter behind him, watching Sasha progress to his feet with not a hint of apology on his face. We're waiting.

Corinne tilts the glass of bourbon back; her first sips are always the deepest. It's the second glass that gets nursed delicately. When she sets the glass back down, her eyes settle on Evan, and she returns the sweet smile with something decidedly sardonic. "Oh, honey. A stripper in her thirties has to learn at some point that it doesn't do to make fun of other people's ages. I might be older, but your expiration date, if you choose to stay in this line of business, approaches faster. In short, perishable products need to watch their mouths." She looks up at Sasha as he seems to be making a move for the stage.

Evan gives Paris a slow, sweet smile and a dip of her head, though she doesn't speak until after Corinne has finished. "While that may be true," she comments over her shoulder to the chanteuse. "Gravity will -always- favor me over you. Of course, I suppose that Nick will be able to find you the very best in engineers, enough to keep you looking young-ish for at least another two or three years. It may be true that I have an expiration date, yes. However, I'm not the one of us who's already expired." With a delicate, deft twist, she swings herself up onto a bar stool next to Paris, preparing to watch Sasha. And the Lioness is smiling, a relaxed, easy smile that either takes the sting out of her words, or twists them just a little deeper.

"Ladies, ladies." Nicholas makes an audible sound with his teeth. Tsk. "I'm right in the middle here, and if those claws rip my suit I'm going to get very upset." He shakes his head, lifting his chin as he watches the stage area.

Oddly enough, once Sasha's on his feet, and moving rather than talking, it's evident that where he lacks perspicacity, he's possessed of some grace. It's tempered by nerves at the moment, of course, but the further he gets from the bar and the closer he gets to the stage, soaked in flickering light and shadow, the more it becomes apparent. He's probably danced before. Actually danced, in the traditional meaning of the word. Then again, he's probably also taken clothes off for strange men and women before, if the practiced roll of shoulders and flick of his jacket into a chair he passes, is any indication.

Siiiiiiigh. "Sometimes you're far too reasonable," Paris laments. "Alright, drinks after. I'll just…" That's actually probably -exactly- what he was thinking of doing. Well, there are a few elligible rear ends. Any will probably do, although he, too, seems worried about the impending feline altercation. Nicholas' plea for peace is echoed. "You're both absolutely lovely, alright? With a few exceptions," shut up bout the farm girl! "Nick always has good taste in the company he keeps." That said, his gaze will track Evan as she passes him to take that stool beside, and though she turns to look at the stage, he promptly turns to look at her from that suggested vantage point. "This'll do."

"You miss the point, and mix your metaphors," Corinne replies after another deep draught of bourbon that renders the glass half-empty. Her eyes are still on Sasha, however, and flicker with scrutiny as the auditioner flicks his jacket off into a chair. She turns to face the stage fully, giving it her focus.

Nicholas glances at Paris and smirks. That's all the freighter pilot gets for now though. He twists his back a little bit, murmuring something to the bartender behind them. It receives a nod, and within a minute there's a glass sitting by his elbow. And, someone throws on a CD in the back, music starting an energetic, sensual boom over the stage aread. Let's see if boy's got rhythm.

Lioness simply looks bemused as she studies Sasha, studies his movements, head canting to the side slightly. "I take it," she murmurs, asiding to Paris, "That you're a…fan of the arts," she asks, keeping her voice low.

Sasha isn't dressed to be doing a strip show. He probably wasn't expecting to do a strip show tonight. Maybe he anticipated getting an application form and a pen, and a 'comb your hair next time', but when you're told to entertain? You do what you can with what you've got. And as soon as the music kicks on, what he's got is skill. He's strong, he's limber, he picks up the beat and he moves with it. Grooves with it. That first layer of tee shirt is peeled off with a writhe that ripples from shoulders to hips, tossed to some imaginary audience member in the front row. The second is scraped at, gathered up in his fingers to bare a swath of lean stomach that amounts to only a tease as he keeps dancing. His eyes are on the trio ostensibly judging him at the bar.

The arts? Is that what the kids are calling it now? Paris conjures up another characteristically wide grin. "I like to consider myself a man who appreciates a wide variety of wordly pleasures." Except for dancing dudes. Avert! "Of course, the top… oh, ten or so on the list all involve a woman in some way." The next few entries are probably all booze. "But I like Nick's place, if that's what you mean. I've been coming here for a while, since the first time I swung by the Destiny on a run, I guess." Which was evidently a while back, from the way he talks about it. "And I mean it, he really does have good taste." Wink.

What can we say. Nicholas doesn't waste time. He picks up his drink and rests his elbow back on the bar, gently swirling the clear liquid by his hip. He regards the stage with one slender brow in a slight arch, and glances at Corinne with a little smirk. "He can spell and he knows how to undress himself. Might be a good catch."

Corinne turns her head to give Nicholas a single scoff of a laugh. "Did I miss the spelling portion of the audition? I need further proof." She looks forward again, eyes focusing on that bare part of his stomach. "On second thought, most of the words I like when bouncing off abs like that are pretty simple to spell. I'll take your word for it." Lascivious words, to be sure, but she doesn't truly seem to be in Cougaaarrr mode. Just amusing herself.

"He does," Evan agrees with Paris, though her attention is on Sasha. "Mmmm. He's excellent. Very good form." Her expression isn't lascivious - it's considering, contemplating. It's as if she's calculating Sasha's net worth.

"Spelling and undressing? Frak, -I- can do that, Nick. Gimme a job. You can pay me in free lapdances." Paris keeps a good mood, despite being subjected to the audition. He's still using it an opportunity to get visually acquainted with Evan.

"Can I." Nicholas glances over at Paris and pointedly down towards where the man's lap would be. "Tempting, but you're not my type." A smirk graces his thin lips and he looks back at the stage.

The kid on stage even takes a stalk around the pole, though it's touched only glancingly with a brush of his shoulder. Sasha's got more than the footwork down; he's also got the hip, and the mobility in his spine to give each motion a touch of the unwholesome. An amateur might be in full hip-thrusting mode by now, but it's enough for him to hint at it, tease with an inch of skin and steady eye contact. The second shirt comes off with his back turned; right hand drags up his left side, left hand drags up his right. It's the sort of leanly muscled body one expects to see on.. well, a dancer. There's jazz training in the mix there, somewhere. Lindy, perhaps? And sweat tinging his forehead as he continues to throw himself into the music.

"He has a man's shoulders," Corinne comments, likely unhelpfully. What does that even mean? Something to her, apparently.

Nicholas tilts his head slowly at what Sasha's doing onstage, his gray eyes making a slight squint. "I feel like I'm at a sock hop in the ninth circle of hell." He sips his drink and sighs, calling out towards the stage, "Stop frolicking, this isn't a musical. You've got thirty seconds to impress these women, get to it."

Paris mutters. Nick and his cleverness. Damn him. "Yeah yeah, all right. Application withdrawn. Leave me alone." Sulk. Well, feigned sulk. Its hard to really be that unhappy, sitting next to Evan. Waiting out the storm…

Evan's lips twitch slightly at Nicholas' call and then she's rolling to her feet. Without a word to anyone, she starts toward the stage, steps matched to the beat of the music, body picking up the rise and fall of the notes. And yes, yes, she helps herself to Sasha's stage, beginning the task of stalking the man.

Frolicking? Frolicking? Sasha drags his eyes toward the woman stalking onto the stage, and keeps them there. If she wants to make this a game, he'll play along. As she approaches, he backs away. Where she prowls, he slinks, matched perfectly to her beat.

Nicholas smirks, pulling a pack of cigarettes from the pocket of the jacket draped on his barstool. He withdraws two, setting one down by Corinne and one over by Paris. Then he pulls a third and lights it, glancing down only briefly. When the flame clicks off he folds an arm across his waist, resting his other elbow on the back of his hand, taking a slow drag of the smoke. Through the rippling cloud he watches the new pair development onstage. Clock's ticking.

Corinne finishes off the rest of her drink, sliding the glass behind her with a little push. She reaches for the cigarette Nicholas set out for her, and waits until his is lit and he's had his first drag. After giving him what she deems a reasonable amount of time, she reaches out, plucks the thing from his lips, and uses the smoldering end to help light hers. Offering it back, she smokes and continues to watch the business onstage. "Okay, with two of them it really /is/ starting to look like a musical." She pulls the cigarette from her lips and offers it to Paris without turning to look at him, in case he finds himself without a lighter.

Evan continues the stalk, slowly advancing on poor Sasha for a few more beats, then spinning around and dropping to a knee, giving him her back, head bowed. It's a sharp, fluid movement down, then very slowly back up, body rippling slowly, muscles clearly working beneath the clothes. Once she's vertical again, her arm snakes out, hand extended toward Sasha as if to invite him into her space. Her chin's up slightly, eyes a bit darker as she watches the man she's dancing with.

Paris has lost his company! As well as a convenient obstalce in his line of sight to the stage. Of course, now the situation is complicated. Evan goes up there. So does he watch her, or avoid Sasha? It is perplexing. The cigarette is a good distraction, though, and he reaches to gratefully snatch up Nick's offering, holding it to snag a light from Corinne when she offers him the chance, before leaning back to take a puff or two or three himslf. "Yeah, I dunno. This is a little strange." When -he- calls something strange? Eh. And he's apparently settled the watching question, getting as much of Evan as he can, and tolerating what of Sasha comes with her.

James comes in from Passage.
James has arrived.

"I'm sure you can do something with him, Nick," Corinne mumbles, though by now it's clear she's lost interest in watching the stage. She gives it a vague wave with her cigarette hand, marking an erratic trail of smoke in the air as she does so. "I'll see you tomorrow at Serendipity. Ronnie's birthday." She tips Roy, then starts to make her way out.

Musical, strip tease, you say potato I say potahto. Sasha's told to dance, so he's dancing. Instead of stepping into her space, however, when she offers that hand, he tugs her into his. To ghost her fingers, if she permits, over bared and not-yet-bared skin— he's not about to shed the last of his clothing, and offend Paris over there at the bar.

Nicholas ignores the commentary around him, his eyes staying stage-wards. The look on his face is critical, not entirely happy but at least those pursed lips are thoughtful. Or he might just have a little gas. His expression would probably be the same either way. His arm stays folded across his slender waist, his hand serving as a shelf for the other elbow. The flick of his thumb against the filter of the cigarette sends ash to the floor by his polished shoe, and he gives a mild glance to his watch before looking back at the stage. "Alright, enough." His voice carries well, and within a few seconds the music suddenly cuts out. The lower lighting switches back to a neutral wash over the stage, illuminating both Evan and Sasha equally. He looks over at Corinne. "Going already? I'll be there, dear."

Corinne leaves for Passage [O].
Corinne has left.

As soon as the music cuts, the illusion drops and the slinking lioness rolls to her full height to become the confident woman. Oddly enough, she offers Sasha a flickered, soft smile - one of support, it would seem. Then she's moving off the stage, back down to her seat by Paris.

James enters the club quietly, slipping in and hovering close to the door, his gaze immediately drawn to the stage with a look of something between surprise, disgust, and complete attention. As the music stops and the lights return to normal, he hurriedly turns his attention towards the bar and watching where he's going instead. Falling over chairs and things would be terribly embarrassing.

Paris is not gonna clap. Nuh-uh. He manages not to say anything rude, though, and offers a welcoming smile for Evan as she heads back his way. "Nick, you gonna start a ladies night, or something?"

Sasha pulls away from Evan, the minute the music cuts and the lights come back up. Frustrated? Definitely. Without speaking, he turns and pads away to snatch up various articles of clothing he'd discarded. T-shirt, jumper, jacket. Fortunately, for those delicate sensibilities out there, there never was anything more than his upper body unclothed. Which is rectified rather swiftly.

Nicholas draws in a very slow breath through his nose and exhales it the same way with an audible sound. "I have no idea what in the hell that was," he says towards Sasha, very mildly. "And if you ever do it again, I may just go home and slash my wrists. But." He flicks the end of the cigarette again, crossing one foot over the other. "You're nice to look at, and so long as half the battle's fought I can usually bring myself to provide the reinforcements. Fine, I will try you out on the payroll. The choreographer is going to have a loooooong week." He makes a 'hm' sound in his throat and looks over at Paris. "I was thinking about it. I might just, now that I have Spring Fling over here available to dance." His attention flickers to James approaching the bar, watching the man's reaction to the whole thing for a moment or two. He looks amused.

James rubs briefly at his temples, sliding into a seat at the bar and waiting patiently there, casting a long look over the drinks available.

As always, Paris is somewhat watchful of those who come and go around him, and casts a glance at James as he takes his place at the bar. Quick, sizing him up, and that's it. He takes a few puffs on his smoke, and looks back to Nick, nodding. "Yeah, I mean as much as I hate to encourage it, I'm sure it would be good business. Just as many desperate women in the surviving dregs of humanity as guys, I suppose. Little diversification in markets never hurts either."

Spring Fling, is it. Sasha's in the process of yanking a shirt back on as he approaches the bar and listens to Nicholas' assessment, and if Paris can't handle a bit of skin? Then he's just out of luck. "Yeah, fine, I get it," he mumbles, shoving the end of his t-shirt into the waist of his pants. Wait. He's going to be given a chance? Nicholas is simply stared at for a few moments by the bleary-eyed young man. Like, you've got to be kidding me.

James clears his throat softly, resting one elbow on the bar. "Do you think I might please have a glass of the house red?" he inquires politely, turning on the smile. "You are open, I assume?"

Nicholas laughs under his breath at Paris' assessment. "So they say, don't they. So they say." He turns around and stubs out his cigarette, then looks at Sasha. "You can pick up your access card to the dressing rooms tomorrow. We'll, ah…" His gray eyes make a slow sweep of Sasha, once, as both brows loft and his voice goes bone dry. "…get the costumer in. ASAP." He tilts his head towards James, glancing at the new face. "Certainly, we're open. Roy…" He calls down to the bartender. "Red wine for the gentleman, please." Roy obliges.

Paris isn't really allergic to other men, shirtless or otherwise. No flinching, sickness, or other overt signs of disgust as Sasha appraoches, in fact. However, the exceptionally good looking women have vacated his immediate presence, which is reason of its own for some concern. "Wanna grab that chat?" he asks of Nick. "Or I'll be by once again at least, before I head over to the Carina for a little while."

Sasha's clothes are clean, at least. The kid's shrugging his jacket on while Nicholas appraises his attire, incredulity vanishing to a sort of wary relief. Considerable relief. He swallows thickly, and nods. "Access card. Right. Costumer. What's the, ah." He's almost ashamed to ask, and skirts to the side a little so as not to be in the way of arriving customers. "What's the pay?" This seems to be the all-important question, no matter how offhanded he makes it sound.

James inclines his head in thanks both towards Nicholas and then towards the barman. "Ah, thank you both kindly." He takes up the glass, warming it in his hands, with apparently no immediate inclination to get it down his neck. Instead, he watches the new dancer's conversation from the corner of his eye, curious.

"It'll be explained in the paperwork tomorrow," Nicholas seems to wave Sasha away from him with a small gesture. "Go do something else. Shoo." He exhales and looks back at Paris. "Why don't you come back in a few hours, Paris? I've got to catch a client right now, and I hate to rush drinks with a friend. Wonderful of you to stop by." He pushes off the counter he was leaning against, picking his suit jacket off the stool. James gets a very pleasant smile. "Enjoy yourself, sir."

"Yeah, that'll do. I got a guy to see about a thing, anyhow." How utterly upstanding-sounding. Snuffing the cigarette out in a covenient ashtray, Paris hauls himself up. Nothing else to say really - he doesn't know the other guys, and Nick and him have things planned out. So off he goes.

Shoo. Right. Sasha's not going to push his luck, in either case. He's gone and out the door by the time Nicholas is finished talking with Paris. Spring Fling, indeed.

Evan slinks back in to settle on a stool, apparently planning on relaxing - especially given the drink she's holding in one hand. There's bemusement as she sees Sasha taking off and Nick taking his leave, as well.

James finally lifts his glass to his mouth, inhaling deeply before taking a tentative sip of the wine. As Evan takes a seat beside him, he rises briefly, politely to his feet, inclining his head towards her before resuming his seat.

"Lioness, have a fantastic evening, my dear." Nicholas carefully pulls on his jacket and winks lightly at Evan. Another nod to James and he's breezing for the exit.

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