Breakfast Part I: It's the most important meal of the day

Cyd wouldn’t exactly call it a walk of shame, but it wasn’t an especially prideful walk the next morning either as she made her way to the garage. She was hoping to catch a ride with Axel, or at least walk over with him, not sure if Mathias had remembered to extend the invite for waffles.

“Speed!” She called into the garage with it’s always-open door. “You around?”

Within the garage Axel was slumped over a pair of bucket seats, a basic fan clipped to the top of the seat had dealt the final blow in the series of events that night as he had planned to finally buff out the dent in his car but the cool air and relative quiet of the neighborhood was too much for his fatigue and the emptiness that was left after the adrenaline wore off. But Cyd’s voice had roused him slightly from his dreams, and as his body regained feeling a foot taken off the back of the seat head and sent him to the floor.

Luckily this wasn’t the oddest position he had been in but the rapid rise nearly clipped his head on the side of his car. He scrambled to the end of the seat and surveyed the situation, certain for a moment that someone had come to collect something or another and cursing himself for not getting that lock. But seeing Cyd set his fears at ease and he brought himself up. “Yo CC” he called out and straddled over the chair, “Always around.”

“Shoulda knocked, figured you hooked back up with the race rabbits later on.” She said with a snicker. “Thought you might need to rally your strength, so I brought you this.” She tossed him a chocolate bar from her fuzzy cat backpack. “Matty tell you ‘bout breakfast?”

"What them? Haha well- oh!" He put up a weary hand to catch at the bar and managed to grip the end wrapper while securing the rest of the momentum of it with his chest. He eagerly began to tear at the bar as his stomach recognized the scent of food and reminded him he hadn’t eaten in a VERY long time. As he gnawed into the chocolate he turned up to Cyd with a near full mouth, “-dis i’nt brekfst?” he gulped down the first piece, “Thanks for that by the way.”

She waved it off, knowing times for him were rough, and he wasn’t looking for handouts. What he [i]was[i] looking was worse for wear which was also her fault. “Sorta scored a deal last night, didn’t have to give out the usual percentage, so diner - my treat waffles, coffee, hell if you wanna add scrambled anything to it - Skye’s the limit. I don’t wanna smell like rave though. Gonna use your shower, you have hot water?” It was a lot to hope for, but she figured ask anyway. Though not directly affected by the terrorist act on zone five, naturally they’d take clean water from the slums to cart it to shitty civilians. It had nothing to do with Speed’ lack of hot water, but at least it’d give her reason to both be bitter towards Oracle and make it quick rinse.

Axel quickly made his way over to a pile of papers and one digipad. He hurriedly scrolled through them and sifted through the pile while he flicked through the pad occasionally, “Umm..lemme check one second aaaaannnndddd…” he scrambled to a second pile and mumbled under his breath “water bill..water bill..gotta get that water bill…..” He lost track of her as he made his way to the third pile. He really had to clean up...and pay the bills but you had to cross those tracks when you came to ‘em.

“You don’t!” She screeched from inside the shower as the cold water hit her body. “Cold, cold cold cold….” She soaped, and rinsed quickly to escape the cold water. “Holy shit that’s like ice. Wrapping a towel around herself, she blew on her hands to warm them. “Listen,I got a bag of clothes in locker 121, toss ‘em in for me?” She called out, while stepping onto the tee shirt she’d peeled off to keep her feet off the cold floor.

“What? Oh…” He had got lost thinking through his next few paychecks. He made his way over as he flicked through the last ‘Payment Tardy’ email to the line of lockers. He remembered when these served more of a purpose than to hold clothes for himself and others friends. But for now he made his way to locker 121 as asked and pulled a bag out from a mess of other Cyd paraphernalia. “Got it!” He called back to the shower, and slung the bag over his shoulder to the door frame. “Incoming.” He gave the bag a shrug off of his shoulder and let the momentum carry it in the air through the doorway into the room.

“Thanks.” Cyd snickered, as it hit the floor. Inside was every bright color imaginable, purple and aqua being her colors of choice for the day. She wrung the excess water from her hair and left it over her shoulders to dry, padding through the shop in bare feet. The concrete surface was cold and soothing, she took care to step around the numerous oil stains screws and other obstacles as she made her way back to the lockers. “How about I help with them? Some of the bills I mean,” she asked. “I’m here enough.”

Axel’s eyes followed her around the room taking in the show for a sweet moment before responding to her, “How many times you gonna offer huh? Doesn’t matter how often you, or Matty, or hell even Lexi and your ‘rents show up; I’m gonna look after the shop and you’re more than welcome to come by because you’ve done more than enough for me. Plus,” he flapped a bill in his hand up into the air, “wouldn’t be the first time they turned off the power, I find a way.” He gave a smile but as always the fear was at the back of his mind.

Cyd closed the locker door slowly, tilting her head to lean against it while looking back to him, or at his shoes at least. “I gave Matty my apartment. He was living in that shitty warehouse where he cooks up his drugs with -- well, he has some different obligations now. He needed it more n’ me. It’s gonna take me a little to save up first and last for a new place, and you know me and my mom don’t really see eye to eye. Plus -- they have enough with Lexi, and if I’m there, Lexi-- Lexi’s exhausting. I just can’t. So I can keep making up excuses to hang around here, or like when I was sixteen, you say it’s okay for me to stay for a bit. Only I’m not going to stay and mooch off you, so if I can’t pay a water bill, some lights or overhead at least, then -- I’ll figure something else out. Also, I forgot my toothbrush so I used yours.”

Leaving the toothbrush comment aside, “Oh you mean the kids? That’s really nice of you Cyd.” He left the wall and moved around the car in the middle of the garage and leaned onto the hood, glad that it was finally cool enough to sit on as it was a favorite position of his. “Matthias spilled the beans on those guys, I signed up to babysit. So I guess I got that side gig out of all this.” He gave a look down to his own feet and let out a soft chuckle, “Does that make me Uncle Axel? Or you think you’re gonna corrupt them to call me Speed as well?”

“Uncle Speed has a better ring to it, don’t you think? I’m glad he finally told you. I swore to secrecy. Oh- My mom and dad - they don’t know yet. I’m gonna let Math be the one to tell ‘em, it’s his good news to share. They’re awesome kids. Connor’s a little heart-breaker, check it, he made me kandi.” She held up her bracelet proudly. “He’s got two older sisters, May and Lea - Ravers in the making. I’ve been showing ‘em how to shuffle. I’m also signed up to sit. And I couldn’t have three kids and my brother living in the same warehouse where he cooks up reds and rains. What if -- anything happened?” She pulled on her light up sneakers to her bare feet, sockless and leaving the laces untied for the time being. He’d changed the subject, she could easily surmise what that meant, it was stupid to ask, anyway. This was his place, his space. “We should probably get to breakfast though, for Matty thinks I ran off with his jacket.”

A grumble from his stomach urged Axel on toward any ideas involving food, “That sounds better than my other plans for today, give Uncle Speed a second to wash off the rave, hopefully you didn’t use up all the cold water.” He quickly made his way back to the shower and grabbed another crumpled shirt and jacket off of a shelf, gave them a sniff check, and quickly jumped into the back and hit the shower with the clothes in hand. Summarily the shirt that he had been wearing the night before came flying through the doorway and into a convenient pile near other similarly filthy clothes.

“Let’s not refer to yourself as “Uncle Speed” when it’s just you and me, okay?” Cyd kidded, calling above the running water.

Similar to Cyd, the cold shower kept things very brief and Axel emerged with a dark black shirt now gripping tightly to him but at the very least clean. “Right, all set.”

She unabashedly gave him more than a quick once over as he stepped out of the wash room, as he was still damp from the shower- she always thought he looked good in black. Combined with his dark hair it made his eyes pop, and he unfairly had lashes she was insanely jealous of. Tying her laces, she slipped into Mathias’ oversized jacket and her kitty cat backpack. “You wanna walk?” She asked, “Or……” She nodded her head in the direction of ‘the car.’ “Let’s walk. It’ll save you some on fuel and stuff, oh, and about what I asked before?” She shook her head. “Forget it. I have a few people I can crash with for a bit. Wasn’t a big thing.”

He frowned at her as he pulled wet hair back from his face, “Like hell it wasn’t a big thing, I’ll get the inflatable setup no problem.” He made his way over to the lockers and grabbed one of his own jackets to throw over the wet shirt. “Think about it over breakfast? And walking sounds just fine by me, should be dry by then anyways.” He gave a smile to try and reassure her that she wasn’t being a burden.

“I dunno, drowned street rat is kind of a good look for you.” She quipped, clicking her tongue against the roof of her mouth. Outside, she watched as he went through the motions of pretending to lock the door, even though they both knew the lock had been busted forever. Cyd slipped the cat headphones over her wet hair, keeping the music off and the ‘cuffs’ off her ears, but she felt out of sorts without them perched on her head. “I looked out for your friends for a bit after you left, I think a couple of ‘em are really into you - said they were gonna look you up for another ride.”

“Well gee thanks, I feel like it really fits my lifestyle.” He punctuated his point by flicking a handful of water toward Cyd. At her comment on the racers he smiled and recalled the hecticness of the previous night’s race, “That so? You sure they weren’t just rolling a bit too hard?” Axel joked, unsure what she meant by bringing up Dyna and Gielle and the others. “I appreciate the coverage there, I’ll probably have to run a few more races before this whole ‘indentured servitude’ thing is over.” he complained, “having a cheering section probably won’t be too bad.”

Cyd tried in vain to block the water. “They were doing just the right amount of rollin’ for a rave.” Her mood darkened a bit once again wishing they had some kind of recourse against the prick of a boss he worked for, keeping her hands jammed in the pockets of Math’s jacket as they walked. She stifled a yawn as she spun on her toes, mindlessly chewing Axel’s ear off about the rave, leaving out a few minor details, like the run-in with “Mr. Chuckles.” “And -- “ She concluded as they reached the door of the diner. “If all goes according to plan, one of our regulars may need a runner, someone who can carry some pharma from point A to point B. I told 'em I know a guy."

Joint Post with Turk

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