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A Lively Old Dance

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Ms. Paint hums a little under under her breath as she makes the soup. It's an old recipe, but a good one, and she always turns to it if Andrew has a cold. He's not prone to them, although when she first met him she rather assumed he would be - a scrawny human man who looked a little like he forgot to do certain things, like eat and sleep and blink.

When the soup has The Right Smell, she takes it off the burner and grabs some bowls and some spoons. Three of them - one for her, one for Andrew, and one for their new house guest.

She hasn't been properly introduced to him quite yet, and she all together isn't sure what to make of him. He looks an awful lot like Jack, who she knows only because of occasionally watching while Andrew worked. This was partly curiosity and partly making sure that he wouldn't pull an all nighter and fall asleep at his keyboard. At last count, four keyboards had been ruined by his drool. It was a miracle he hadn't electrocuted himself.

Ms. Paint put the bowls on a tray and walked to the room with their guest. She hears Hussie moving around and she hears a very stubborn silence - that would be their guest. She opens the door carefully and is greeted by... Doctor Scratch, painted on the walls in white and lime green. Andrew has his hands covered in paint and does some kind of interpretive dance as he draws the late doctor all over the bedroom walls.

He looks like he's having a lot of fun, so she goes over to their guest. "Hello, Mr. Slick! Are you feeling any better today?"

Whatever he's feeling, he doesn't say. The man gives her a dark stare. Probably too tired to give her a proper glare. Well, from what Andrew told her, he'd just had to kill the hate of his life and got the snot kicked out of him just before that.

"I brought you some soup. How are your pillows? The bed? Is there anything I can do to make you more comfortable?" She asks. Ms. Paint smiles warmly at him. Maybe Andrew has given him a headache - he can do that, if you weren't used to him.

There's no response. Aha. He's trying to give her the silent treatment. Well, more than one handsome Dersite has tried that with her.

"I can get you some aspirin if you need-"

She hasn't gotten the word out when Slick growls and slaps the soup tray out of her hands. Fortunately, it misses her, even if it all goes on the floor.

"Get that dishwater away from me! And tell that asshole to stop drawing Scratch all over the damn walls!"

"Somehow I am not surprised that this is the thanks I get," Andrew cuts in, glowering at Slick. "You ungrateful Swine."

Slick gives a kind of growl at Andrew, and Ms. Paint shakes her head. "It's all right Andrew. I'll get us some more soup and mop that up later. I'll be right back," she tells them, bustling out the door.

Hussie glances over at her, and looks down at his paint stained hands. Then he glowers over at Slick. "If she wasn't coming back in only a few minutes, I'd tackle you and make you lick that soup up off the floor. That soup is a delicacy and better men have killed for it."

Slick snorts.

When Ms. Paint returns, fresh tray and fresh bowls of soup in her hands, Slick has a bit of paint on him and a look like he's just been roughed up. Ms. Paint gives Andrew a pointed look, and says "Go wash up, and bring back a wet washcloth so I can wipe this off of Mr. Slick. You have to be somewhere in a little bit, don't you? So you should eat your soup so you aren't hungry."

Andrew looks a bit like a petulant child, pouting a bit, but he rubs his chin and nods. "You're right. I have to interfere with John and Jade for a space of three nanoseconds. That's why I need you, I almost forget these things..." He shuffles out, muttering something under his breath.

She smiles again at Slick. "I understand that it's been a little rough for you lately... I'm terribly sorry about that. Andrew can be a bit of a brat, but I promise that I'm truly trying to help..."

Slick eyes her for a minute, then sighs, and takes the bowl of soup. Ms. Paint beams and leaves the room, either after Hussie or for a washcloth, he can't decide. Whatever. He stares at the bowl of soup.

It does smell good. And, after he takes the spoon in his organic hand and brings himself to take a sip, he has to admit that it is pretty good.