Summary: Tessa stops by Homer's room late at night to find him packing.
Date: PHD16
Related Logs: None

Tonight must be the night. Homer is moving about the room in the Lodge that he's claimed as his, collecting bits and pieces from different drawers and shoving them down into a backpack on the bed. Next to the backpack is his hunting rifle and a satchel of ammo. Running a hand through his ever-more-unruly hair, he shoots a glance out the window and then back to the task at hand.

Tessa Sideris is the type of person who wears pyjamas. More than that, she's the type of person whose blue pyjama pants have little terrier drawings marching across the fabric, and the red tank-top she wears with them has tiny, faded polka dots on it. And no terriers. Her hair is tied back in a loose knot, bobbing as she traipses down the hallway with a toothbrush and a bottle of water in her hand. Suffice it to say that Tess has no nefarious plans, this evening… but Homer does, and as she passes by his room, the light beneath the door catches her attention. Walking backwards, she returns to his door and halts there, turning to face it full-on. And this time, she knocks instead of just barging in.

"What?" No, Homer doesn't go to actually see who it is. The door remains shut and from the sounds inside, it seems he's continuing with the task he was doing a moment before, following it up with a loud zip of a zipper closing. Glancing over at a mounted animal head on the wall, he starts to head that way.

He spoke, and in Tessa's world, that's an invitation to walk in. Ducking her head, she turns the knob and slowly pushes the door open, peeking inside before she takes a slow step forward. Without thinking, she starts to speak— then pauses and removes the toothbrush from her mouth. "Heya," she says, her attention turning to him rather than the bag on the bed. "Couldn't sleep, and your light was on, so— "

Homer is reaching up behind the animal's head when the door opens. Turning and bringing his hand down, complete with plastic baggy, he stares Tessa's way indignantly before heading back over to the bag he's packing. For his part, he's dressed in his day clothes: jeans, shirt, jacket and some boots he got somewhere that have replaced his expensive sneakers. "Well, aren't you nosy… and apparently, color blind."

"What?" Tipping her chin down, Tessa glances at her clothes for a second or two before looking back to Homer. The mildly perplexed look on her face suggests she didn't notice anything particularly wrong with her choice of attire. "I'm not nosy, just making sure your shoulder isn't bothering you and keeping you up." It's now that she nudges the door closed behind her and tips her head to the side, looking to the backpack. "Are you going somewhere?"

"Out." Homer doesn't bother de-vaguing that up. He shoves the baggy into the inner pocket on his jacket and eyes Tessa, "My shoulder is fine." Hefting the backpack, he slips it over his shoulders and then grabs the satchel with the ammo. "What are you doing up, anyway?"

"Insomnia," Tessa replies, no movement made to obey his first order to get out of the room. "That's why I was awake until now." Jutting her toothbrush forward to gesture at him, she says, "Now I'm going to be up trying to figure out where you're going." Her demeanor is still typically bright, for her, despite her curiosity and confusion. "You're leaving?"

"We don't know what's out there. We need to find out. I'm going to take the gamble. Maybe I'll find some anti-rads and some weapons while I'm out there, too," Homer announces, hanging the satchel across his body. He grabs for his rifle. "I'm tired of sitting around, pretending this is a camp out… Sitting here is waiting for death."

"Gods, everyone is so negative." Rolling her eyes, Tessa holds her hands out helplessly, sidestepping in front of the door to put herself in his path. "Monty said that going out there is asking for death, too. And you don't even know what's out there, like you said. You're going to go by yourself?" If she weren't so nice, she just might bring up what happened the last time he had to face off with some thugs on his own.

"Monty is a nice old fart, but he's still just that, an old fart. What future did he have before the attack? What about the rest of us. Y'know, the people who aren't old as dirt." Homer smirks as that last bit comes out of his mouth, slinging his rifle on it's strap over his other shoulder. Then, eyeing Tessa, he advances on her and the door. "Who said anything about going by myself, anyway?"

That startles her, and Tessa frowns almost instantly, one hand resting on the opposite arm. "No one, I guess. I just figured you were going by yourself, since everyone else seems fine with staying here until we know what's out there." She slides back a step, her foot hitting against the door. "Who's going with you?"

He doesn't stop until he's standing a foot away. Personal bubble? What's that? Homer pins the woman with a stare and offers her a cat-eating-the-canary smile. "Well, /you/ for one. I mean, would you let me just walk out of here by myself?"

"N…no, but I can't leave, Homer." Tessa's tone is apologetic as she leans back against the door, still loking perplexed. "They don't have a doctor here. All they have is one girl who can set a bone and then there's me. What if someone falls off the roof or gets shot?" Arching a brow, she gestures with the bottle of water for his shoulder.

"What if, what if, what if." Homer just shakes his head, "What if we find a doctor while we're out there. A hospital with real facilities. Medical supplies. And how many people are even here. I'm talking about going out there and maybe finding people. Dozens. Hundreds. Thousands. Maybe they don't have a healer, either."

Shifting her weight between her feet, Tessa drops her eyes from him, looking to the bottle of water in her hand for a moment. She turns it over as if the plastic held some meaning, but there isn't even a label for her to read. Finally looking back up to him, she asks, "You think there might be a lot of people out there who need to be found?"

"More than a few, at any rate. Remember that guy those hillbillies were trolling around on a leash? You think they were the only people taking advantage of the situation?" Shaking his head again, Homer sighs and leans forward, kissing Tessa on the forehead. Then, unceremoniously, he picks her up and moves her out of the way. "If you want to come, come. But you aren't stopping me. Definitely not in that outfit anyway."

It's only when he picks her up off her feet that Tessa lets out a sound of protest - a quiet one, conscious of the fact that others would be sleeping. "What if you get shot or hit by a car or you fall down a flight of stairs?" she asks, staying right where he placed her, at least for now. "You can't set your own bones. You definitely can't do anything about it if you're unconscious." A beat of silence, then she adds: "And what's wrong with my outfit?"

"Well. If you really wanted to stop me, something that covered a lot less would probably be more appropriate. Maybe a teddy and some thigh highs. Not pajama pants with puppies and, this is purely hypothetical, some sort of cartoon-covered underoos." Homer smirks again and turns towards the door, laying a hand on the knob. "If I get shot or hit or fall, well, I'd need ya around, right? So. I guess I'm saying I need you to come with me."

Considering the way her cheeks flush with colour, either Tessa is embarrassed even by the prospect of wearing an outfit like the one suggested - or Homer's guess about the extent of her cartoon-covered attire is accurate. She's quiet for a few seconds, staring at him with a level gaze. Finally, she says, "I'm still not going to carry a gun. Or shoot one if you put one in my hands."

"What are your feelings on the subject of blowing things up?" Homer asks then, taking his hand off the knob and turning back to the woman. Leaving immediately seems to have been put off temporarily. "And do you trust me to keep you safe while we're out there? Because if you don't, you really shouldn't go."

Another roll of her eyes. "I'm not going to blow anything up, either," Tessa replies, making a somewhat childish face at Homer for the suggestion. His second question is more difficult to answer, however, and she shifts again, watching him carefully. "You wouldn't ask me that if you weren't trustworthy."

"Well, I'm also asking you that because the last time I put myself between you and danger, I got shot for it and didn't really hit them back worth a damn." Homer rolls his shoulders, causing him to wince briefly before saying, "Can't promise it'll be safe. But, it'll be as safe as staying here would be."

"You still kept me safe, didn't you?" Leaning against the bed, Tessa casts him a very matter-of-fact smile. "You told me to run, I did. That counts. Except you got hurt, so it counts but maybe not as much as it would if you hadn't gotten hurt at all." Sucking in a breath, then letting it out all at once, she says, "Basically, yes. I trust you to TRY to keep me safe."

"You are ridiculously cute," Homer declares, throwing his hands up in the air lamely, signifying his surrender. "Alright. So. You're coming with me. I think we can get a few of the others to do the same. We go out and we see what we can see. Uh and promise not to eat one another if things get bad."

"I am not /ridiculously/ cute." Scrunching her nose in disgust, Tessa pushes away from the bed, holding her hands up in mock defense. "And I don't eat meat," she says, shaking her head. "So you're safe. I'm not going to start with people." Resting one hand on her hip, she taps the water bottle against her leg. "Who else?"

Homer moves over to the bed as Tessa moves away, sitting down on the edge. "Thug. Maybe tattoo chick. Sarge is a little too tied to the people here. I don't think he'd be willing to leave them. I'd like to avoid the tribal warrior chick and her cronies altogether. Honestly, I don't think they have a full grasp on the reality of the situation."

Trying to get a handle on who he's speaking of without the use of names, Tessa glances away, searching her memory for people who fit these descriptions. "Okay," she says, speaking slowly. "I think I know who you're talking about." She isn't really convinced that she has a full grasp on the reality of the situation, either. But she isn't about to say that. "Should I… when?"

"Be ready to leave in the morning. Try to pack light, but don't leave anything behind you aren't okay with losing. I want to come back here, but it may be a month or two before we come back. A lot could happen." Homer shrugs off his rifle and sets it on the bed next to him. "I won't leave til daylight."

"Right. Okay." Taking a few steps towards the door, Tessa pauses to glance back over her shoulder. "I'm just going to assume you were going to ask me all along and weren't planning on leaving without saying anything," she says, her tone one of jest. "I'll be ready." Only when she has a hand on the doorknob and has pulled it open a crack does she think of a new question. She turns again, nudging the door closed. "Is this one of those things I shouldn't be telling people about?"

"One thing you should learn about me is… never make assumptions. When you think you have me figured out, that's when you're gonna be left guessing." Homer ducks his head then and starts shucking off the satchel and backpack he so recently put on. "I'd keep it to yourself. I imagine some people aren't going to be happy with other people leaving."

Luckily it's late night, and Tessa doesn't have to worry about keeping a secret for very long if they're leaving at daylight. Nodding her head quickly, she offers another swift little smile. "I'll see you in the morning, then," she says, pulling the door open and raising her toothbrush in a little mock-salute. "Sweet dreams, Homer." With that, she steps out into the hallway, pulling the door closed behind her.

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