Shades of Gray
Shades of Grey
Summary: Idle chat between Adele and Reighner turns into a fiery argument about Zaharis.
Date: 46 ACH
Related Logs: Anything having to do with Zaharis and his drug problem

Spotlights Carina - Pyr Hotel
46 ACH 6285 Souls

In the sea of sports, there is a small island of non sports related propaganda. That is Spotlights. Hearkening back to bygone days of flatscreen projected images as entertainment, Spotlights is a dim place, the intimate tables never holding more than four people. The low lighting is broken from time to time by its namesake, occasionally a cone of light sweeping slowly through the area, though the effect on the air, laden with a harmless mist generator is more of the beam of the light visible than shining harshly on anyone. The air is quiet, with the occasional lone piano music heard drifting through the air. The bar is polished glass and chrome, catching and reflecting the light when the two meet, otherwise the subdued offset lights give the place a sensual glow. One wall holds a low curtained stage, which at times draws back, and the spotlights fade, and a classic film plays at scheduled times. The bar serves drinks and food, though the emphasis is on the drinks, and the food is limited. All the glassware is sparkling clean and of crystal. Martini glasses, whiskey tumblers, daiquiri glasses and Brandy Snifters, Spotlights has it all.

Contents: Adele Reighner Wireless 834

Exits: [O] Out

A middle-aged, balding man standing about 5'10 tall. His face is weathered and starting to crease. Thin eyebrows lay atop brown eyes, a narrow nose, and a prominent and dimpled chin. His hair is mostly black with some white strands.

He wears a pale, almost steel blue dress shirt. Two-button barrel cuffs, no front pocket, spread collar, and well-fitted. His neck is clinched by a matte black tie, dimpled and secured in place one-third of the way down by a silver tie bar. He wears a pair of dark gray wool trousers held up by button-fastened black suspenders that cross in a Y in the back. The pant legs break once over black cap toe dress shoes.

Over his clothes he wears a matching dark gray coat. Single breasted, double vented, notch lapeled, and two buttoned. The tailoring is sharp, with minimal shoulder padding. There's four buttons sewn onto the sleeves, which break at the wrist and show a quarter inch of the shirt underneath.

A tall, thin woman in her early thirties. Her build is lithe, her skin a creamy white that sets off the reds in her strawberry-blonde hair. High cheekbones give her oval face a sculpted look, with grey almond shaped eyes beneath thin reddish brows. She is classically pretty, and she takes obvious care to ensure that she always appears tasteful - but there is a rigidity to her stature, a tension to her smiles, and an overall subdued quality to each expression she makes.

Today, Adele wears a ribbed white knit sweater, its sleeves ending at the elbows, slightly frayed as though the rest of them were cut off. Her khakis are well worn in, but neat, and the loafers on her feet look as though they've been run through the mill. Her hair is left down; wavy, layered locks reach just below her shoulder blades.

Adele strides into the bar, looking around with arched brows as though it were her first time to see this place. Spotting a familiar figure at the bar, she approaches and settles into the stool next to him. "I'll have a beer," she tells the bartender, before tilting her head to regard Reighner with a smile.

Reighner looks sidelong on the familiar voice. Again, it takes a moment to place her — he didn't expect to see her here. He offers a trying smile. "Adele. How are you doing?"

"Good," Adele answers, shifting comfortably on the stool. "How about you?" Her eyes flick from his face to his drink, then back to his face.

"I'm fine," Reighner answers, tone and expression telling. His eyes track the bartender momentarily. "Did I hear you right? A beer?"

Adele looks bemused as she, too, looks in the bartender's direction. "Yes," she answers, reaching up to tuck a lock of hair behind her ear. "Is that all right?" Her gaze slides back to Reighner, one brow arched slightly higher than the other.

"Well, maybe." Reighner looks back to her. "It's funny, isn't it? Liquor at the crab shack and beer here?" He reaches out to place a palm against the bar, a little closer to the opposite side. "Let's have a gin and tonic with an olive garnish, please." Did he really have the presumption to order for her?

Adele's lofted brow sinks and decides to attempt to join the other in a furrow of further puzzlement. The expression lasts but briefly before she laughs and says across the bar, "The beer won't be necessary, thanks." Her focus settles on Reighner again, and she explains, "I've never been here before; I just popped in to look quickly, but I saw you and thought I'd say hi. But ordering a water seemed a little rude, so." She gestures vaguely towards the other side of the bar. "But if you insist. What brings you this way?"

"Nothing wrong with a drink on the run," Reighner answers. He shifts his forearms, which rest against the bar's edge. "A little wind-down after a day in the Carina clinic." He takes a slight drink.

"Oh?" Adele asks, as her drink is set before her. She nods her polite thanks to the bartender. "I went down there the other day and asked if they needed help. I think they took pity on me. I start tomorrow." She has a small sip.

Reighner smirks, but it seems to be an inward one. He glances at the bartender as he leaves. "Did you practice, back on the colonies?"

Adele nods, lowering her glass to the bar. "Not for very long before research called to me," she answers, her eyes slipping off Reighner's face and into the distance over his shoulder for a second.

Reighner looks back forward when her eyes move away. "Do you have a white coat?"

"I have this," Adele says, gesturing down to herself with a vague smirk. "It's about as professional as I can possibly get right now. Everything I had was on the PAS."

Reighner touches his tongue to the inside of his cheek. He takes another drink. "You'll need a white coat, then."

Adele takes a sip from her own drink, rendering the glass half-empty. Or half-full, depending on one's outlook. "Yes. Yes, I will," she replies, sliding her gaze back to Reighner's face. "Got a spare?"

Reighner glances at her. "Do you know how to stitch?"

"Flesh, yes," Adele replies, swiveling on her stool to face Reighner fully, hands on her knees. "I imagine I could probably apply the same concept to fabric. Why."

"Mine are embroidered." He swishes the glass around, clinking his ice. He leans his closest shoulder back and puts his opposite elbow on the bar, looking at her. "Unless you don't mind being called Matt by your patients."

"Your coats say Matt?" Adele asks, tilting her head amusedly. "That's…" She refrains from inserting an adjective with a pursing of her grinning lips. She has another drink, then says, "I bet Jesse could get me one."

"Not exactly." Reighner seems to double take when she mentions his name. "Jesse Zaharis?" The name is not said as if it's held in high esteem.

Adele's eyes narrow for a split second, then she compensates with another arch of her brows. She nods. "Yes. Jesse Zaharis." She pauses, as if considering her next words, then asks, "Something wrong?"

Reighner keeps his posture still. On the far hand, he rubs the side of his forefinger with his thumb. He avoids the question and poses one of his own, delivered levelly. "How do you know him?"

Adele's posture straightens as she continues to face Reighner with her stool swiveled. She pulls her hands up from her knees and clasps them in her lap instead. "Why?" she asks with an upwards tilt of her chin.

Reighner's lips curl down in a small frown. "Answer the question."

"Not until you tell me why you're so interested," Adele replies with a growing indignance. Or defensiveness.

Reighner narrows his eyes. It seems that the more she doesn't answer him, the more he assumes her relationship with Zaharis is. He puts his elbows on the bar and crosses his forearms, turning his eyes back forward. "Yes, you can probably get a blank one from him." He takes a sip.

Adele looks dumbounded as Reighner turns his gaze away and picks back up with an earlier topic. "I know what this is about, Matt," she says after a pause, turning her stool until she's also facing forward. She stares at her drink - specifically, at the tiny olive speared on plastic inside it.

Reighner arches his eyebrows, but doesn't make eye contact. He says nothing and seems to find the wall behind the bar infinitely interesting.

"Don't blacklist me because of what Jesse did," Adele continues after it's clear that Reighner isn't going to respond. She swallows, then sucks in a breath to continue, and shakes her head as if to amend her former statement. "No, you know what, if you don't even know that he and I are seeing each other, then there's no way you know anything about him, where he comes from, or his past." She swivels her head about an inch, looking at Reighner sidelong.

Reighner tilts his chin up. There's a distinct change of his body language toward the negative. He shrugs his shoulders and draws himself more upright. He finishes his drink — there wasn't much left — and moves to stand.

Adele lets out a sharp breath as Reighner starts to stand. Her shoulders slump momentarily, then she pushes what's left of her drink towards the opposite end of the bar. With a subtle shake of her head, still facing forward, she says, "Goodbye, Matt."

With an unchanging frown, Reighner takes his jacket from the stoolback and shrugs it on. He pulls out his wallet from the inside pocket and lays down some money. Returning his wallet to its original place, he leans in and mutters, "I'll tell you what I know about him. I know that he's dragged /our/ profession through the wringer, I know that he's jeopardized the health of /our/ patients, and the most damning, I know he hasn't come clean and apologized about /his/ betrayal."

Adele's lips draw into a taut line as Reighner mutters at her, and when he's done she stands from her stool and looks him squarely in the eyes. "He's an addict, Matt. He's been one since he was /thirteen years old/. You know as well as I do that's not something you can just come out of and cease to be." She swallows back some sort of emotion. Her nostrils flare as she visibly tries to compose herself. "It's inexcusable. I won't argue with that, and he knows it too. But if you're so self-righteous that you can't see that there are some serious shades of grey at work in this situation, then… I don't know." She looks spent.

Reighner moves his head back when she stands. That news seems to new to him, but he recovers quickly and retorts, simply, "Then he shouldn't be a doctor. He shouldn't have been licensed in the first place."

"Maybe not," Adele grants as she folds her arms across her chest. "But the military knows his past, Matt, and they judged him fit for the position he's in now." She breathes in, and then out, in a measured manner. "Look, I'm going to stop defending him, because I'm clearly biased. I've wrangled with my conscience enough over this whole debacle, more than you know. I won't ask you to give him a chance, but you should at least tell him how you feel. And I'd appreciate it if you didn't simply write me off because I happen to be in love with him."

Reighner takes a step back. "It should be the other way around." When she mentions loving him, he lowers one eyebrow instead of raising the other. "Nice seeing you again, Adele." He turns and walks away.

"Have you ever done something /wrong/ Matt?" Adele calls out to Reighner's back as it gets further away from the bar.

Reighner whirls around and rapidly closes the distance. He claps his hands, loudly. "Wake up!" He leans in and rasps, angrily, "Don't you diminish his frak-up. This is a /major/ wrong. He is an /addict/, and now I know, a /relapsed addict/. Good intentioned or not, he does not deserve to be a doctor."

The patrons nearby halt their conversations. The bartender frowns and shuffles closer.

It's Adele's turn to step backwards, and she does so at the clap. Her jaw tightens at Reighner's words. "I know it is a /major wrong/!" she returns at a hiss. "That's exactly what I'm saying, Matt, if you would listen for half a damn second." The patrons nearby have not escaped her notice, and she shoots one of them a 'WHAT' look before she continues. "Give the man a chance to come to terms with his wrongdoing! When you do something that you know is wrong, that you /know/ has disappointed and harmed not only everyone around you but… yourself," she tilts her chin inward and swallows, her gaze angled at the floor, "it takes more than a damn week to make sense of what you should /do/ about it." She expells another sharp breath, then looks back up at Reighner. "There. I'm finished. Not that it even matters, your mind is made the frak up."

Reighner makes a vigorous sweep of his hand, in an 'I'm through with you' gesture. He's livid. He whirls around and walks away again.

Adele grabs for a salt shaker on the bar, and goes through the motions as if she were going to throw it at Reighner's retreating back. Of course, it never leaves her hand, and she slams it back down on the bar before walking out, herself. At a safe distance.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License