It's strange walking through the Garment District in broad daylight, clad in civilian clothes. The mob presence is obvious in the blacked-out car windows, the Consolidated Carriers trucks, the shady-looking goons hanging out in the doorways, and Dan feels more vulnerable in his heavy winter coat than he does under a thin layer of spandex and night's cover. It makes him nervous, but– he needs a new suit, and this is the best place to get one of quality.
He picks a clothier's house almost hidden in a side street off 37th, away from the suffocating bustle of Penn Station. The paintwork is shabby but the windows are clean, and Dan tentatively assesses it to be the kind of establishment that won't be insufferably prim. For all his money, he doesn't care for the cold sophistication of up-market trade.
There's the clatter of sewing machines out back, mannequins displaying various outfits, and a hirsute fellow at the counter with a tape measure draped over his shoulders. Dan explains that he's looking to buy a made-to-measure three-piece, and the tailor grins broadly.
"That I can do for ya. Yep, can't see that you'd find anything offa rack that'd fit you good, linebacker or something, eh?" He pats Dan on the shoulder companionably. "My usual girl is on vacation, but I got a guy that is just as good, prob'ly better in fact. Don't mind, I hope?" He winks.
"Er, no, not at all," Dan says, bemused.
The man sticks his head out back, the machine noises becoming louder as he opens the door, and bellows, "Walter! Customer out front, need you to measure up! I'm going for lunch!"
He grins toothily at Dan as he pulls on a coat, making his way to the door. "He'll be with ya in a moment."
The door rattles shut, and Dan turns to see a short, surly-looking redhead staring at him.
His eyes widen, and Dan has seen that bracing of the shoulders, the slight bend of the knees a hundred times; it means danger, run, now. The stubbled jaw, the freckled hands, the small scar that puckers his lower lip.
There is absolutely no mistaking it.
Holy shit, Dan thinks, and tries not to look too thunderstruck.
"Um," he says, trying to decide if feigning obliviousness will be as insulting as it seems.
"This way, please," Walter says. "Sir."
Okay then. Willful ignorance seems to be the order of the day.
Walter ducks into a room off to the side, curtains hung instead of a door, and Dan follows him, slightly dazed. It's fairly cramped and lined with mirrors; a changing room, Dan realizes, watching Walter's reflection as it recurs infinitely.
He has amazing arms, Dan thinks, and almost laughs at himself. They are, though – lean, defined, powerful. They can pin a man twice his size. The muscles flex as Walter bounces onto his toes to measure across Dan's shoulders, accidentally catching his eye in the mirror. Blue. Dan smiles at him. He frowns back, the rest of his face just as raw and unapologetic as his mouth.
"Brown will suit you," His voice is different, pitched slightly higher, still gravelly but missing that bucket-of-rusty-nails edge. "With pinstripes. Unless you have a color in mind."
Dan gives up on trying to arrange 'Rorschach is giving me fashion tips' into something sane, so he just keeps on smiling like a birdbrain, "No, I— brown sounds good."
Walter jots down numbers in a notebook, extracted from the breast pocket of his (rather hideous) green shirt. Chest, shoulder, sleeve, waist, outseam leg. He pauses with the tape measure, one bony fist hovering around Dan's thigh. "Can extrapolate inside leg measurements. Suit will be ready in a week."
"Okay, great. Thanks." Dan is all but hustled towards the door, Walter following a pace behind to ensure his departure. To hell with this charade, he thinks. "See you tonight, buddy."
It's going to be an interesting patrol.