Conversation Gone Awry

The Ice Cream Shoppe

Walking into the Ice Cream Shoppe is like walking into another era. Designed to have a small garage-mechanic theme, the shiny chrome and metallic red leather seats look like they've been remodeled based on the backseats of hotrods from the 50s and 60s. Each corner is taken up by a booth large enough to seat at least eight people comfortably. More booths line the walls, and several tables are in the center of the room.
Black and white checkerboard linoleum covers the floor, accented by white walls sporting a checkerboard trim. The decorations on the walls ranges from old traffic lights and signs, to a three-dimensional hull of a bright-red 1957 Chevy Bel-Air that juts out from the back wall.
With a Wurlitzer jukebox in one corner playing 'American oldies', and smaller radio controlled boxes at the booths, this is definitely a place for the younger crowd.
Though famous for its milkshakes and ice cream floats, the Shoppe also has a long counter with a glass shield around it to keep patrons from contaminating the wares. Ice cream in every color and flavor imaginable can be found from one end to the other, interspersed with the occasional yogurt or sorbet.

It's been a while, since Ivan's last set foot into the Ice Cream Shoppe. One glance at the sign reminds him exactly why that is so, and he ends up curling his lips in amusement. Lucky for him? There's a new employee behind the counter, one which doesn't quite recognize him. And so, trying to keep a low profile, the man proceeds to order. "Yo. I am…a small rum raisin, in the cup please, thank you?

Fresh from her social committee work at the Fellowship, and an incredible conversation with her chosen candidate for Mayor, Hope Tyler wanders into the ice cream shop. It's hard to keep her out, even with all the backlash from the previous incident. For one, they can't ever really tell her or Faith apart. For another, she's a really good customer, and telling one of your better customers to take a hike is never good for business.

"Can I get a fresh fruit frozen yogurt smoothie, with extra strawberries?"

She's not yet noticed Ivan, and she's not really looking anywhere but up at the sign above the counter.

Ivan however, does notice Hope. She's hard for him to miss, since she does look remarkably like someone particularly close to him. Silence follows as he considers what to do - but after a moment he decides to take a chance. "Hey," he calls out, it's easy and it's friendly. "You back here for a rematch?" It is then that he receives his ice cream.

"I can throw strawberries at you again," Hope says, though there's less of a hint of humor in her tone. She waits while the smoothie is made, and once it is she pays for it. Extra strawberries are definitely nice. Sipping it through the straw, she eyes him. "You are a pervert, you know that, right?"

Ivan lets out a nervous laugh…praying she's joking. Just in case, however, he steps back from her as he scoops the first bite into his mouth with relish. However, he does feign a rather innocent look when she calls him a pervert. "What? Me? How come?"

She may be joking. She may be serious. It's really hard to tell with Hope. Especially when it comes to Ivan. "Chocolate sauce? Covering me with it? You're really lucky Bobby wasn't home. He might have killed you for that, even if you were joking." Does she believe he was joking? Not in the least. Taking another sip from the straw, she motions to an empty table. It's not the only one, so Ivan can run if he wants to. "Look, I'm going to ask you straight up, since Faith didn't say one way or another. Is Tripp going to be invited to your wedding?"

"To be fair, I was covering Faith with chocolate sauce. Then you kind of interrupted, and to be polite, I offered to chocolatize you as well. I'm allowed. She's my fiance. And if you don't like it, don't read our sexts!" The entire situation genuinely amuses him. "And of course I was joking. Geez." With that, he follows after her, intent on sitting at the table as well. Her next topic of conversation prompts him to sober slightly. "Honestly? I don't know. But don't be surprised if he is." Beat. "I'm not entirely sure if I'd want him there. But having him watch her walk down the aisle to me does appeal."

"Don't sext her at my house?" Hope shrugs her shoulders, and seats herself comfortably. "She wants something daytime and outdoors. I'm really more concerned about the reception. I draw the line at ensuring there is synthetic blood there, if I'm doing the planning. So you may want to take care of the bar yourself?" There is another question she wants to ask, and so taking another sip she wonders, "What would you do if McNaab lost the next election? Would you work for the new Mayor, or would you be out of a job?"

"I'll try and contain my lust next time," Ivan drawls in amusement when Hope tells him not to sext in her house. But then, the conversation becomes more serious. "She does? That's good. During the day is great, even. And…I'm not going to allow synthetic blood at my reception. I don't want vampires at my damn wedding. I'm not going to encourage that. If Tripp's there? I'll tell him to B-Y-O-B." Blink. "What? Oh…well, McNaab's been great and all, but I'll do whatever I need to do to stay employed. Got a lot of expenses now. I guess it depends on the new mayor, whether he wants me or wants to replace me with one of his guys."

At least Hope and Ivan seem to agree on one thing — no vampires at the wedding. It is unfortunate that wedding receptions generally take place at public venues, but there's very little Hope can do about that. "Then I can take care of the bar for you no problem. I'll serve carrot juice." Going with the vegetable theme, of course. "Even if you weren't working for a mayor though, you'd make sure my sister is taken care of, right? Without moving her too far away?"

"Carrot juice…" Ivan groans, but he wont complain, lest he get in trouble with the woman once again. She's a mean one, Missus Grinch. However, he is distracted by her following question. Now, if he knew she was just trying to ate her guilt for wanting to vote against McNaab, his response might be different. But for the time being? Ivan figures that she's just trying to make sure he'll make a good husband. So he takes the question seriously, nodding to her. "I'd do whatever I'd need to to provide for you sister. If that meant having to become a janitor at the nearest high school? That's what I'd do. Why?"

"It's yummy and nutritious. Be happy I'm not serving strawberry smoothies?" There's a little grin that touches her lips to show that she's teasing about that. Though when he answers her question, Hope smiles quite happily. "Good. That's what I wanted to hear. Because re-elections are coming up soon and on the off-chance," the absolute chance, "McNaab loses, I want to make sure my sister is provided for. Though I think if you're not wholly loyal to McNaab and whoever wins wants to keep you on, you'd do it."

"It's my wedding. I don't want it to be nutritious, I want it to be delicious." Ivan will just assume the strawberry smoothie thing is a joke. Even if it isn't. "Yeah, well, we're working on the election already. I'm not all that worried. And I guess I would. Being employed is more important than ridiculous loyalty or something of the like."

"Too bad for you I'm planning it then, right? Faith already gave me your measurements so I can get the cucumber suit made." Hope grins very evilly, sipping again at her smoothie. "Is anyone running against him, or is he a shoo-in for re-election?" A pleasant conversation can apparently be had from time to time, no matter if Hope actually does loathe him. She's trying. For her sister.

"There's been rumors that we'll have one major competitor. Zane Wright, I believe his name is? He's a favorite of white conservatives." Of course Ivan would know the demographic and all. And of course Hope 'loathes' him, even though she doesn't. "You scare me. I don't know if you're serious or not…I just hope you're not."

"You'll have to wait until September to find out," Hope says, with such glee that she's nearly giggling evilly at him. "Zane Wright. That name sounds really familiar." So very hard for her to fib about this to try to get information. She's not the world's best liar. Then again, Ivan is likely aware he attends the Fellowship as his church. "He might pose a bit of competition to McNaab. You know, in light of what's been going on with my sister being mocked up to think she's a vampire and all."

Ivan quirks his brows upwards, but he doesn't say anything. The bitter smile that appears on his face reveals that he's now privy as to what's going on in her mind. "If they think that was bad, wait until this Wright fellow is in office…" He lets out a tragic sigh here, shaking his head as he proceeds to stubbornly scoop the ice cream into his mouth.

"So you're planning a dirty campaign then?" Hope eyes him quite curiously, finishing off her smoothie with a wide-eyed stare. "Why do you think that Mr. Wright," she obviously sees nothing funny about saying his name, "would do so poorly in office?"

"I'm planning a what campaign?" Ivan sounds surprised by the accusation, although all he can do is narrow his eyes speculatively at Hope. "He would do poorly in office, because his policy with regards to vampires are flawed. They'll act out. There will be more bloodshed, more violence on the streets if you try to oppress them."

"A dirty campaign? That's what it's called, right? I mean, dirty politics or whatever?" Smiling at him innocently, she adds, "I mean, you bad mouth him to the constituents, and don't look at me like I'm accusing you of doing it. I'm just honestly curious about it all." Perhaps maybe a little excited because Mr. Wright? He's up there with Steven Newlin, in Hope's mind. "You realize that you're speaking on behalf of the church, right? If that is all that can be expected of creatures of darkness, why not just eradicate all of them." Pause. "Hypothetically I mean." She still doesn't condone murder.

"Yeah, no. And, you are accusing me of doing so." Ivan can't help the pang of irritation he feels at Hope's smarmy grin. "So I'd like to point out - you're the one that brought up the subject in the first place. And that I refrained from saying anything until prompted, by you. Second of all, it's easy to talk about the 'eradication' of their kind. But do you know how practical that is? Not very. At all. I don't know if you remember this, but they're kind of immortal and old. They've lived through things we couldn't even dream of. I don't think it's humanly possible to get rid of them all, and if it were, the lives of casualties lost would be astronomical."

"There are more of us than them. If humanity banded together we could easily rid the world of them," Hope says with a shrug. "They're immortal, but even they have weaknesses." Reaching into her purse, she extracts what looks to be a small blue lipstick container. "It's silver mace. It burns their skin and makes it difficult for them to see if you spray it right. Gives a person enough time to get away." She's honestly not saying she's going out with pitchforks trying to burn them out of the city, just having a conversation. "And I'm not accusing you. I really am curious about it all. I never thought I'd be interested in politics, but now I am. Would you help me learn the proper terminology?" So she doesn't sound like a complete and utter buffoon when she appears for her first day of volunteering. "I'm really not trying to insult you this time, Ivan. Honest."

Ivan stops to just stare at Hope, shaking his head slowly. "Have you stopped, for even one second, to realize what that would entail, Hope? How many human lives would be lost to a senseless war? How many children would die, how many parents would be murdered…and for what?" Silence, followed by the shaking of his head as he nurses his ice cream once again. "Maybe."

"Wars have been fought over less valid reasons," Hope points out. "All of them have cost lives too. But Ivan, I'm talking about saving humanity. We're never really going to be safe until we're no longer plagued by parasites." Shaking her head, she sighs. "Well let me know about helping me with it, alright? I don't have another political science class until the fall, but I'd like to be prepared."

"And you think humanity will ever be parasite free, Hope? You truly think we'll ever be safe? Yes, wars have been faught for less valid reasons. But those wars wouldn't be as all encompassing as these. Those opponents weren't as dangerous as ours. And while you might be able to justify over half of the human population dying out? I can't. I will do anything, anything and everything in my power to see to it that this so-called war never sees the light of day." Ivan is impassioned when he says this, and pursing his lips, he stares down at the table stubbornly.

"Ivan, have you never seen a vampire movie? They sleep during the day. You just need to find their resting place and set it on fire or something." If everyone struck at the same time? It would be easy. She's sure of it. "The problem is, Ivan? I'm not the only one that feels this way. There are plenty of politicians world wide who already want to take on something of this type. Look at Eastern Europe and what they're doing there." Again, she shrugs. "I wish you the best with that, and I'm not warmonger or politician, but I really think in the end, that we're all just going to wind up as drained as a bugs on spiderwebs if the world keeps going the way it is, and I for one don't want to bring a child into a world where it can become a Happy Meal for someone with fangs."

Ivan lets out a laugh. "Oh, yeah. Vampire movies. Because those are oh so realistic and good sources to draw hope from." Cue the rolling of his eyes. He gets up then, clearly intent on leaving. "Exactly, Hope. Do you think you're the first to come up with this 'grand master plan'? Do you think you'll be the last? No. The majority of these creatures have been alive or…not for hundreds of hundreds of years. If you think they haven't learned a thing or two about survival…" Yeah. No way Ivan'll help Hope with her kind of politics. "I've got to run. Have a nice day, Hope."

"For the record, Ivan, it's not my plan. I was just trying to have a conversation without a fight." Sighing, she sets the empty smoothie cup down and shakes her head. "I can see that's never going to happen though. At least you can tell Faith I tried to be civil." At least she's not dumping strawberry ice cream on his head either. "Good luck with your campaign. I know the Wright man for the job will win."

"No, you weren't trying to have a conversation without a job. You were trying to gloat about the fact that you're voting for a candidate that I don't represent. And then you were advocating a massive, world-wide war that honestly? Both sides would lose at." The topic at hand bothers him, immensely. Because the prospect of such a war scares him. Because he knows what could possibly happen…and he knows he has to do everything he can to prevent it. "And when that man fails, I'll be there to pick up the pieces of this broken city. Don't you worry about it."

At this point? Ivan is very lucky that Hope finished her frosty treat. "You mean without a reason? Who the heck says 'without a job'? Did you grow in in the twenties or something?" Hope shakes her head. "I never mentioned a word until just now about who I'm supporting. I'm going to support someone who puts community, family, and humanity first. Why wouldn't I?" It is who she is, and she makes no apologies for it. "I never advocate war, or murder, Fontane. Never. I was merely trying to have a conversation with you. So you know what? Since you like vampires so much, and since Faith seems to be all B-F-F's with one still? I will cry for you both when they turn on you and eat your kitten or your children. Just remember that it's a world you're supporting there." Zane Wright will not fail. He will be a man that does the city proud, Hope is absolutely one hundred percent certain of that. The empty smoothie cup is tossed almost at him. It whizzes by his head before it falls into the garbage bin. Then she's pushing open the door and stalking out.

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