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Zeik      It's been a few weeks since Zeik nearly tripped over the municipality of El Dorado. Or has it been over a month? Time seems to blur when you get to his age, the older gentleman sitting on the ground away from travelers walking to and fro. Mouth closed, his jaw works to crunch through a bite of pear as he watches the sun rise. It's not often he gets to do that, these days. There's a curiously folded tarp by his side, a constant companion that never leaves his sides, it seems.
Fiona Just coming up the direction of the old ranch faintly to the north, the woman walks with a confidence of local familiarity. She follows a faint trail to the east toward the lake. As the sun rises, she reaches a hand to adjust the wide brim to block the glare. She stops her stride at seeing someone out and about. "Mornin." She offers, eyes glancing to the tarp wrapped object briefly.
Zeik      Hearing the offered greeting, it takes a moment or two for Zeik to finish chewing his food. He doesn't seem to be in a hurry. Finally swallowing it down, his head turns so that his welding goggled gaze can take in the local. "Mornin." He echoes, as it expected for people to do. The woman is eyeing the tarp, and it makes him wonder if there would be anything better for carrying the bundle underneath. He certainly tried to find something better.
Fiona Dressed casually, but wearing an assault rifle strapped to her shoulder, it might be more weariness the anything else that makes the amber eyes study things. Still, she looks up to make eye contact. "Which way ya headed?" The question intrusive, and having a sense of authority. A glance towards the ranch behind, and then East to Bitter Lake.
Zeik      Zeik looks mildly taken back, eyebrows shooting up at the rather mundane question. He doesn't seem offended, as much as he really doesn't know which way he was supposed to head. "I'm going to be headed back into town, but sometimes it's a bit too loud and crowded in there. Have to get my space, sometimes." There's an awkward moment, a dipping of head and a movement of lips as he contemplates the next social cue. Pushing himself to stand, he seems to favor his left leg before he offers his right hand to the woman. People still shake hands, right? "I'm Ezekiel Cole, but folks call me Zeik because it's easier to remember."
Fiona The woman nods slowly, glancing towards the west as she steps closer. "I understand that." She says of the crowding. When he offers his hand and name, she glances around, surveying the area first. Then she takes the hand in a shake. "Fiona Caine, nice to meet'ca, Ezekiel." Decent grip, but no test of will or strength. Her hand lowering back down. "Lake is nice in the morning." She offers, perhaps in suggestion for a peaceful place.
Zeik      Zeik nods along slowly as well, lips slightly puckering as he looks to the side at the serene surroundings. "Nice to meet you, Fiona." The country twang he had adopted earlier slips slightly, as his hand makes the necessary time to shake before it's gone. There's something off to his mannerisms, but he certainly tries to be polite. "Yes, you don't get a chance to see such a large body of water these days."
Fiona Fiona nods slowly, "It is nice to have it close by, swimming and fishing." She states in a calmer tone, taking a step back to create a comfortable personal space, by the terms of weary strangers. "It has been of good fortune to have clean pure water close at hand. Other places, I have heard it is worth more than anything else." A pause, "Not from around here though, are ya, Zeik?"
Zeik      "Nope, I reckon not..." It sounds like a line Zeik has picked up along the way, said offhand before he realizes that it's the wrong thing to say. "Umm, no. I am not from around here. Was travelling west, and happened upon this settlement. I promise that I won't cause any trouble." The air of authority Fiona gives off is not lost on the man.
Fiona Fiona's lips lift up to a smile, then she gives a quick laugh. "Sorry, way things work around here. I am sorta stationed at the ranch." She raises her left hand up to thumb point behind herself at the place she came from. "Just my job, I don't take you for a trouble maker type. Thankfully they are usually stupid enough to show off paints, trophies, or weapons. Think it makes them look scary. Just means I can shoot them from further away. I am with the El Dorado Militia Recon." Though she isn't really wearing any signifier of such. "Been any where interesting, traveler?"
Zeik      Zeik grimaces a bit at the mention of being in 'interesting places'. He's been in quite a few places the 42 years of his life can offer, but some aren't safe talking about in the first place. "I've been through Texas, Kansas, Missouri...a few towns along the Eastern Seaboard, too. Never a dull moment."
Fiona "That's a long way.." There is a hesitation, as if she almost doesn't want to ask the question, but some how is compelled. "Eastern Seaboard. I heard of the ocean... Is it dead? Or alive?" She looks to the east as she waits on the answer, expression flat as she anticipates.
Zeik      The older black gentleman swallows, his gaze still looking off into the distance when Fiona asks that question. He clears his throat, a tightening in that weathered face as his Humanity shows through. "It's quite dead out there, but people still manage to make a living somehow. It's been a pleasure to meet you, Fiona." Something out there has spooked Zeik, a long, long time ago, as he gathers up the folded tarp. There's the clinking of metal parts within, shifting as he pulls everything over his shoulder.
Fiona The woman nods, looking as the man starts to pack up, "I see." She punctuates with a sigh. "That's too bad. Any way. Stop by the Gold Digger, tell them Fiona sent you. Have a beer on me, just mention 'the cousin, Fiona said you helped her on scoutin." With that she looks back towards the lake. "Safe travels, Zeik."