Who

Evgeny, Ryott

What

A couple of runaway foster kids are headed for the border so they won't be separated because of their budding relationship. On the way, they get stranded at the Mega Mall and decide to take advantage of the situation.

PG-rated PDA

When

It is December 18, 2018, Modern Day America

Where

A popular Mega Mall

OOC Date 26 Dec 2018 05:00

 

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"Already? I've only been out of your sight for five seconds poppet."


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AU: Megamall, Present Day, Earth

Wide thoroughfares paved in shining tile sprawl in each direction, spangled with the glitter of festive lights and ribbons and ornaments draped from second-floor railings and pillars, ceilings and facades. Stores of every stripe can be found along each stretch - toys, candy-makers, jewelers, makeup salons, department and sports outlets, international speciality shops, bookstores, and more. Restaurants are in abundance of course, from the lowly food court to bubble tea and cinnamon roll vendors to more high-end seated establishments. Holiday music blares above the mild roar of bustling shoppers, cycling through familiar tunes in styles ranging from classical to jazz to pop. Scents both sweet and savory waft through the boisterous air, though the aroma of holiday spices and all things baked seem to dominate.

In the main court at the convergence of corridors, a large swath of floor is cordoned off to contain a sliver of winter wonderland created with lights and scenery and costumed actors. Santa Claus (or one of his “helpers”, as some parents my call him) holds court here, waiting with jolly greetings for the little ones aching to tell him their dearest wishes and willing to sit for pictures…whether those on his lap be smiling or bawling. Crowds converge around an ovular enclosure with tall walls, transparent at the top four feet for ease of viewing the goings-on within. An ice-skating rink can be found here, with vendors selling hot chocolate, coffee, and cookies from wheeled stands at various points around it.


They've been on lock down for a couple of hours now, and a plan is firmly in place. The announcement on the loudspeaker had made it clear that none of the mall patrons would be leaving tonight. There's chaos and distraction as the mall proprietors try to find space and supplies to provide beds for people. Everyone is in the center of the mall, receiving supplies and getting a talk from the mall GM. The corridor containing Dick's Sporting Goods and a Bass Pro Shop is essentially deserted and stupidly, so are the two stores. Evgeny knows his job, get into Dick's and find the things on his list while Ryott raids the Bass Pro for tents, backpacks and any other hardcore camping supplies you can attach to a hiking/camping bag. They already found an abandoned office area half conceiled by the fallow construction of some new store. it's a perfect hiding place, with access to an abandoned shipping door. They'll be able to get out when the getting is good. But they have to pilfer now, pickpocket cash while everyone is sleeping and then they can go. It's been a month since they ran away from the foster home together, and they've always been able to fend for themselves. Evgeny can't wait until they reach the border…. they can disappear and no one would ever find them. No one would try to keep them apart again. Ever. Now's the time… having watched to make sure the store was deserted, Evgeny now slips in, quiet as a mouse and slick as a snake. There could still be employees about.

In her young life, Ryott's had to do a lot to survive. Bounced from one foster home to another since toddlerhood, the life has hardened the girl and she has no qualms of resorting to criminal acts to get by. She's run away from homes before, many times. But this time is different. She's determined not to get dragged back into the system this time because she has so much more to lose…Evgeny. There's no choice but to go on. Watching Evgeny walk into the sporting goods shop, Ryott heads towards the Bass Pro Shop, keeping keen, dark eyes alert and searching for any sign of life. Pulling out one of the burner phones they had 'acquired' when they had to dump their own, she puts one end of the headphones, the one with the mic on it, in her ear and then dials the only number saved in it. While she's waiting for him to pick up, she pads softly through the store and heads first in the direction of the hiking packs.

"Already?" Evgeny answers in a whisper, but it holds an amused note. He's forever teasing her about her need to keep in contact. "I've only been out of your sight for five seconds poppet." He slips through the racks and isles, beelining it to where the waterproof ponchos and solar chargers and waterbags are kept, all three things key items on his list. He palms a whole box of hand and foot warmers into his ratty old backpack. God he hopes Ryott finds the hiking backpacks… his won't last much longer.

"Don't flatter yourself. I just thought it would be smart to be in contact in case something happens to one of us. Sorry for being cautious," Ryott answers in a sarcastic whisper, rolling her eyes to herself but blushing a little at his tease. They've been running for a month and have had a few close calls, she worries every time he's out of her sight. Not that she would ever actually admit to the fact. Looking at the price tags, Ryott takes a couple of the most expensive packs, because they gotta be the best right? "So packs, sleeping bags, some kind of small tent. What about some cooking pots and mess kits?" she asks quietly as she moves over to inspect the sleeping bags, eyeing the ones rated for the lowest temperatures considering.

Evgeny chuckles over the mic of his Bluetooth. "Whatever makes you feel better about it Ryott." Evgeny finds those first three items, adding a water proof flashlight, a few packs of batteries despite the solar chargers, some firestarters. He knows both their sizes so he loots some long John underwear for them both, some stocking hats. "Aye, and some insulated blankets, and a couple of those survival knives, you know the ones with the fishing kits and stuff hidden in the handles?" Evgeny moves to go check out some hunting gear when he slides to a stop in front of a big glass case. "Well well Poppet…. I think it may be our lucky day yet." His eyes glaze as he contemplates how feasible it is to get two of the things he's looking at out without too much fuss and notice.

Grabbing two of the sleeping bags rated for the lowest temperatures and stuffing one into each pack, Ryott growls a little in response to Evgeny's goad, but bites back any sharp retort. He'd only tease her about protesting too much. "Yep, I know the ones you're talking about," she replies curtly before moving on. The next aisle over she grabs a couple of insulated blankets for each pack, before moving over to the tents. As much as she'd love to get a nice big deluxe one, they need to be able to carry it. So she settles on a sturdy two person tent that folds down to a reasonable size and is rated for the coldest of weather. She takes her time, huffing and puffing, figuring out how to get it attached to the bottom of one of the packs, probably Evgeny's.

Evgeny grins, he loves it when he can get under her skin. "You won't believe what I just found… " He wants to ask Ryott about her huffing and puffing, but his hands are now reaching for the unlocked and open case. He withdraws a hand held crossbow and a small hunting rifle. Eyes bugging out cause he can't believe someone was dumb enough to leave the case open. A large, skinny duffle bag is grabbed and in it he puts the crossbow and rifle, he pilfers as much ammo as he can with them and does a fair amount of huffing and puffing himself. "Hey, grab one of those survival books too, one of the ones that tells you how to tell what plants to eat and not, and one that teaches you how to gut and clean animals."

"Well are ya gonna tell me, or make me beg?" Ryott retorts with a smirk clear in her voice as she sighs heavily when she finally has the tent secured to one of the packs. Moving through the aisles now, her sharp gaze scans the shelves and displays for the other things they need. Mess kits and some camping pots and pans, a couple survival knives like Evgeny described and she has to double back, but she finds a survival guide that looks to be the most complete and stuffs that ontop of everything else. Pausing in the middle of the store, she looks around herself and tries to wrack her brain for anything they've forgotten. "I think I'm done here, unless you can think of anything else we might need… I'm coming to join you." And she starts to slowly walk towards the entrance, itching to be next to him again, it's downright eerie without any people in this sprawling store.

Evgeny grins. "As sexy as you begging might be, no. Our trips over the national parks just got easier, got ahold of some hunting gear. I'll show you when we get back to the room. Meet you out front." Evgeny slips back through the store, grabbing anything that looks useful, but is quick about it. He's out faster than he was going in, he wants to stash this before they get caught.

"Why do you gotta twist everything into something lewd?" Ryott scoffs with a hint of sarcastic disgust, but in a darkly playful way. "Hunting gear huh? Just don't accidentally shoot me please. I will fucking beat your ass," She threatens with a sinister sounding chuckle. As she leaves the store, she picks up the pace, but her worn Kicks make no sound on the hard floor. When she spies Evgeny, she bites down on her lower lips and emits a soft whistle so that he'll look at her, and once he does, she tosses, with some heft, the pack carrying the tent at him. Call it revenge for insinuating that she might have a problem being apart from him.

"Yes. Don't you know me by now?" Evgeny chuckles before the phone goes silent and he hangs up. OUt front, that little whistle is enough to catch his attention and he basically has to drop everything to catch the pack, but he manages. Signaling that they need to hurry, he slips off after gathering everything back up and disappears behind the tarps meant to hide the mall construction from the rest of the building. He's clipping pretty fast for their hideout, whatever is in the skinny duffle bag must be good.

Ryott rolls her eyes a little bit when Evgeny gestures that they hurry. Hiking her own pack to her shoulders, she winces and makes a note to adjust the straps for her smaller frame when they are somewhere safe. Trudging along behind him, the girl picks up the pace and catches up to him just as he's gone through the tarps. She keeps quiet until they've made it to the half-finished office at the back of the store. A couple plastic crates make for some seating and Ryott plops down on one of them before slipping her pack off her shoulders and putting it on the ground between her legs so she can get at the strap adjustments. "Oh Mr. Paranoid, can I speak now?" she huffs with a look of interest in the direction of that skinny duffle.

Evgeny chuckles. "Of course you can, but if we got caught, I didn't want you knowing exactly what I was carrying. I just committed a couple of felonies I'm sure." EVgeny sets everything down and empties his ratty old bag out on the floor and begins sorting things between bags. "Managed to swipe a gun and a crossbow and ammo." He flicks a hazel gaze up to Ryott, a bit reserved. He knows guns aren't a favorite for either of them. But being able to get bigger game when they cross the rockies will be a good thing, they can't stay on the grid if they don't wanna be caught.

Taken a little aback when Evgeny admits that he was merely protecting her, Ryott blinks in genuine suprise for a long moment before she realizes what she is doing and counteracts it with a deep scowl as she loosens the straps so that she can get them in the right position. When he mentions felonies, the girl shudders. "That was dumb Evgeny, as much as they might help us. I do, eventually, want us to be able to stop running," pausing to pinch the bridge of her nose and sigh heavily. "If we had been smarter, earlier, may be we wouldn't be running right now," she shoots him a look of almost regret, dark eyes softening. They had tried to keep their relationship secret, but the combination of intense attraction and teenage hormones had made them reckless. Folding her arms over the pack, she drops her head to rest against them, hiding her face as she feels fear wash over, sending a shiver to tremble through her. She just takes a few deep breaths, hoping not to lose her shit at this point.

Evgeny shrugs. "It was dumb of the asshat who left the case open. Besides, once we make the border we can stop running." He does have the decency to look regretful at their past actions. If only….. that's a song they'd been singing for a month now. He abandons his sorting job for a moment to move over and wrap his arms around Ryott. "I'm sorry we got caught…. I am."

"Right, unless we get caught or killed on the way there, cause you know how firearms make things soooo much safer," Ryott retorts in a muffled voice. Deep breath in and out. Over and over…They're clever and resourceful, they wouldn't have survived the last month otherwise. But so many things could happen between here and the border. If they actually manage to get into Canada then, maybe, Ryott will be able to relax. Right now though, her anxiety is starting to spike just as she feels Evgeny's arms wrapping around her. She stiffens briefly, about to rail against the need for comfort, but in a moment, she relaxes, letting herself melt into his embrace with a sigh. Resting her head on his shoulder, she lifts her own arms and wraps them around him in turn, squeezing tightly.

"For hunting only. If you want, I'll leave the rifle behind. I was just thinking of bears when I grabbed that.." And that's the honest to God truth there. Evgeny sighs and holds Ryott in his arms, as long as he dares. He knows there's a limit sometimes, a limit to how much physical contact his short firecracker of a woman will tolerate. When he slips away, it's to begin dividing the supplies he'd lifted into the packs. "We'd better get this sorted out before we go lighten some pockets, we'll skedaddle shortly after." Once his ratty old backpack is completely empty of its contents and said contents are in the new bags, he pulls two insulated snowsuits in vacuum sealed bags and lays them on top. "Had a feeling we might need these." Once done, he changes into an outfit he'd looted a town or so back. The transformation from tattered teen to polished teenage socialite is near unbelievable. "You best get changed too."

"No, it was smart to grab it," Ryott admits reluctantly before she lifts her head and touches a kiss on Evgeny's cheek before he moves away, which he does just before the girl's tolerance is almost up. He always seems to know just when enough is enough for her, and it's one of the things that endears him to the scrappy teen. Oh he still likes to get under her skin at every chance he gets, but when it matters, the smug bastard can be quite caring. She follows him with a warm gaze as she can feel her heart swell slightly in her chest just looking at him. Their foster parents called it puppy love when they caught them, tried to convince her it wasn't real. But she knows better. When he divies up the things he got, she gets up and stretches her arms over her head. "Ugh! Do I have to?" Ryott whines in an exagerated matter before reluctantly changing into the clothes they got to disguise themselves with. As she flattens down the mini-skirt, cursing as she pulls at the way too short hem, she then adjusts the long chestnut brown wig and too tight sweater. The finishing touches include an oversized designer purse, some very loud jewelry, knee high socks and heeled mary janes. Turning on Evgeny, she points at him with a scowl, "Not a single word from you or you'll be singing soprano for a week."

Evgeny might not say anything, but his gaze might just do it for him. He loves it when they disguise themselves, it's a game that gives him a secret thrill, though he certainly doesn't need encouragement where Ryott is concerned. Puppy love? They were all so wrong. He can't take his eyes off her, not then, not now, not ever. Besides, who else was going to put up with his bull? "You're killing me Smalls. It's not nice, not accepting compliments from your boyfriend." Surely he can do that at least?

Ryott can't help but see the way Evgeny is looking at her, and she may secretly like it, although she will deny it with her last breath as needed. A husky chuckle accompanies her slow, deliberate steps in his direction, adding a bit of a wiggle and bounce to her step just to get into character. When she's close enough, she'll press her hands onto Evgeny's chest and rise up on her tiptoes to brush her lips barely against his as she speaks, "You know I'm not a nice girl. I've never tried to pretend otherwise, and you went ahead and fell for me anyway," taking a break to kiss him softly, tuggin his lip a bit at the end, her laughter is almost cold, "So what does that say about you?" With a wicked smirk, she slips one hand down until fingers twine with his and she spins away from him, tugging him along after her.

Evgeny follows with a chuckle, leaving her question unanswered. They understand eachother well enough to know at this point, what one was to the other. Slipping back into the crowds is easy, everyone having returned to their shopping since its early and there's nothing else to do. Evgeny knows they won't be recognized from before, they clean up far nicer than they grunge. So, with confidence he sways towards to food court, and the largest crowds of people. "Ready?"

Ryott slips into the character of ditzy teen with ease. A vapid smile on her face as she practically glues herself to Evgeny's side, fingers locked on his posessively. As he leads them towards the food court, she nods almost imperceptively as she swings her gaze decisively in his direction. As they get into crowded area of hungry, and now annoyed, stranded shoppers, her gaze swings lazily around, but truly she is scanning the crowd for likely marks. Spying a well-dressed couple with at least a dozen huge shopping bags, sitting at a table with a couple of children who are each engrossed on their own tablet, she taps Evgeny's hand with her finger, two times to mean 'look at 2 o'clock'. Turning her head to nuzzle at his neck, she whispers in his ear, "Purse on floor. I'll trip as distraction, you get the loot." She ends with one little nip to his neck before disengaging their hands and heading in the direction of the table. As she sees the father get up, she deliberately trips herself up and falls right into his chest, hands going up to catch herself against him even as he reaches to steady her, "Woah, you ok?" The wife is looking sharply now at this teenager basically draping herself over her husband.

Evgeny checks his two, seeing the same scene Ryott does even as she describes it. A descrete nod lets her know he's heard her. THey've pulled this trick a dozen times or more. Sharp eyes actually catch a clutch wallet peeking out of the purse on the floor, along with a few envelopes. Wallet and envelopes are snaked out as Evgeny walks by and slipped into a shopping bag he'd procured on the way over here, and it's all done smoothly, barely a hitch in his step and the kids don't even look up at him. THough it helps that there's a crowd, he wouldn't have tried this here on an average day. He keeps going too, slipping into the crowd gathering in front of the Chipotle, and lightening a few pockets along the way, looking all the while like a chad out spending daddy's money.

It seems to take Ryott a long second to get her feet under her, playing clumsy as her heeled shoes fail to get purchase over and over. The man's face is reddening, as he attempts to hold her up as she rights herself, but his hands on the girl's hip and arm bring a glare of daggers from the insecure wife. Ryott's hands are grasping desperately at any part of him she can grab, and as she spies Evgeny move off, she finally manages to steady herself. "So sorry sir, Merry Christmas," and, in full awareness at the sharp look the wife is giving her, she reaches up to kiss the man's cheek chastely before walking away with a sish of her hips which pulls the man's gaze automatically and earns him a smack on the shoulder from his wife. As the couple starts to occupy themselves with a heated argument, Ryott catches up next Evgeny and slips a fat wallet and a very nice looking watch surrepticiously into her large purse. She eyes the burrito place with a grumble of her stomach before turning a pleading eye at Evgeny as she slips an arm around his waist, "Food?" she asks with a pout, fluttering her eyelashes in an exagerated fashion, fully commiting to her character.

Evgeny eyes the couple arguing. "LIghting fires already poppet?" He asks under his breath while smiling at her and nodding. "Yes, food sounds amazing." Typical teen boy there. He steers them into the line and fingers some cash out of a wallet in his pocket. "You want to stay here, or find us a table lovely, I can order your usual if you like?"

"I don't know what you're talking about…" Ryott replies with a wicked smirk as she nods in response to his last question. "Sure, if I can find us a spot," she replies as dark eyes graze over the near packed food court. "Remember, no beans, veggies instead," she reminds him before giving his arse a sharp swat and sashays her way out into the crowd. As she looks for a table, she squeezes between people with little wiggles, distracting them with soft giggles as her hands lightly probe pockets for wallets. Finalyl she manages to find a small table off in the corner, dashing towards it when she sees a couple middle aged women make their way towards it to. Sliping into a chair, she looks up at the women with a grin and get a dirty look in return as they go on with their search.

Evgeny chuckles and shakes his head as Ryott moves on, placing himself squarely in line for food. It doesn't take long to get through the line and order, thank goodness, they even get a discount for being stranded at the mall. So, it's only a few moments more before he's searching the crowds for Ryott, two foil wrapped, bulging burritos in hand. He spots her at a small table some seconds later and makes his way over. "Here you are, no beans, veggies instead, just like you asked." He plops the foil wrapped food in front of her and sits down with his own. THe smell of the Barbacoa beef from his burrito makes his mouth water. "Bon Apetite." He says before unwrapping and digging in.

Ryott takes the burrito from Evgeny with the ghost of a smile in thanks. Unwrapping it, she takes a tentative bite, but is soon humming appreciatively with a flutter of her lashes. "Oh my god, that is so good…" she mumbles through bites, obviously savouring the food with relish. "Do you think they got Chipotle's in Canada? I fucking hope so…" she trails off before continuing in her devouring of th tortilla wrapped delicacy.

Evgeny shrugs as he chomps down a big mouthful of burrito. "I hope so." He says when he's got most of it down. Otherwise, he's relatively silent, munching down on the hot food with relish. It's not been often they've been able to eat a hot meal lately and he's enjoying this far too much. He's enjoying watching Ryott have one of her favorite foods too. He'll give her whatever he can to make her happy. It's not long before he's got over half of his food devoured and he's eyeing the crowd.

Every bite is chewed carefully before being swallowed as Ryott savours their first hot meal in a while. Even when they leave the Mall, they will have to carefully budget whatever they manage to make, because they are looking to stay off the grid until they cross the border. But for now, with the noises of the holiday shopping crowd around them, Ryott actually feels like a normal kid for one fleeting moment, no more cares in the world than any of those around them. When she finally finishes the last few bites, licking the mess off her fingers indulgently, she looks back up at Evgeny and catches him watching her. "Can't get enough of me huh Geny?" she teases before her volume drops to a whisper, "Are you sure we should head out before the lockdown is lifted? I really don't want to get lost out there in a blizzard and freeze to death when we're so close."

"Never, Poppet." Evegeny answers Ryott's first, seemingly watching her every move while his keen gaze takes in the world around them. When Ryott poses her second question, his answer is low enough that no one but her should hear it, and near no one should see it. "I don't want to be here when they figure out they have a couple of thieves on their hands either. It'll get ungly with everyone being locked in. We stick to the plan, go back, sleep a couple of hours and get outta here." Normally Evgeny would find a way for them both to get what they want out of the situation, but something tells him staying here would be a bad idea.

Despite herself, Ryott blushes a bit at Evgeny's first, dropping her head to hide it behind the long tresses of her wig. It's still a mystery what the older boy sees in her, but it gives Ryott a warm feeling in her chest that is a little alarming in its unfamiliarity. Listening to his reasoning, she nods along with him, not able to fault his rationale. With a sigh of defeat, she slumps a little in her seat, "You're right, I know you're right. I just…We've come so far, and we're soooo close…We need to make it…together," she states with conviction before sliding her hand over the table top, and holds it, palm up, invitingly towards him.

Evgeny slips his hand into RYott's with ease, affection has never been a hard thing for him to display. "We will. I promise. But we have to stick to the plan if we want that to happen." He lifts her hand to his lips and kisses it, a seal to his promise. "Let's finish up before we go get some sleep eh?" He smiles. "I'm sure there's a few more idiots we can relieve of their hard earned moneys." This last is said near silently, but the mischievous grin he sends Ryott's way should say it all.

Squeezing firmly when Evengy puts his hand in hers, Ryott's eyes brighten for a second as she looks at him and he makes his promise to her. She really does feel like she's living out a modern retelling of Romeo and Juliet, but she's determined their story won't end in tragedy. "Sounds good," she replies, getting up from her chair and leaning over the table to treat him to a swift but heated kiss, one hand gripping the collar of his shirt to pull him closer. "Well…we'll try and get some sleep anyway…" she replies with a suggestive grin before releasing him and straightening. "Together or should we split up?" she asks, referencing his plan to pick a few more pockets on the way back. They have refined tactics for both scenarios in the last month.

Evgeny could melt in that kiss, but knows he shouldn't just now. He compromises with a lusty chuckle and a wink in her direction. "Well, at least we'll try…." He stands and embraces her before looking like the boyfriend slipping off to find his girlfriend a present. "Split up, I'll meet you back at the room gorgeous." He presses a quick kiss to her cheek and slips off.

The only reply Evgeny gets back is a slight nod of Ryott's head after he kisses her cheek. Hiking her oversized bag over her shoulder, she bumps her way through the crowd, sticky fingers working fast and light as she lightens several more pockets and purses, but spacing them out enough not to be obvious. They haven't gotten this far by being dumb. When she's finally satisfied with the heft of her bag, she makes her way back to Evgeny and the little hidden room with their ill-begotten gains. She has to evade a couple of mall security on the way, her heart beat thumping in her chest, but she manages to make it back unseen.

Evgeny is back before Ryott, though only by mere moments. It's long enough that he can tuck away the christmas present he'd got for her in his bag and be lounging by the time she gets back. The next few hours are spent sleeping…or not sleeping, depending on their moods. But when the alarm vibrates on his burner phone, he gets them on their way. Both bundled against the weather, which has slowed by the time they break out of the mall through one of the shipping doors. It's not long after that the alarm is risen in regards to things being missing, but by then, the pair are long gone, off to seek out the Canadian border and evade the forces that seek to keep them apart.

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