Shore Leave

"Shore Leave"

Who: Foster, Joanna & Logan
When: May 1940
Where: The Barbican, Plymouth

What: The crew of the Viperous mucks around Plymouth after returning from Norway.

The Barbican

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Coordinates : 1 0

For centuries home to Plymouth's fish market. The Barbican is a usually fairly busy if somewhat dismal looking street on the waterfront. The waters of the dock are filled with fishing boats, and there used to be a market here, before the war. Nowadays the catch is promptly requisitioned by officials from the Ministry of Food, to be rationed.

That said, you can still buy some fish for greatly inflated prices here, on the sly.

It is currently daytime.
Sub-Rooms :
Contents
Joanna
Foster

West <W> North <N>

Foster is, perhaps surprisingly, actually moving from shop to shop along The Barbican. Shopping.

Joanna is not so much shopping as wandering, hands laced behind her back as she slowly makes her way down the street. Her gaze drifts between the fisher-sellers out to the fishing boats themselves that occupy the harbor, not far from where the Viperous and other Navy craft are ported. She spots Foster in the course of her wandering, pausing. As if surprised the captain exists outside the ship.

Foster apparently doesn't exist too far from outside the ship, as he's still in his uniform, a pair of bags dangling from his hands. He's currently moving toward a smoke shop. He doesn't notice Joanna initially, given her civilian dress, but nearly bumps into her in his quest for… something.

"Oh, Captain, pardon me!" Joanna exclaims as Foster nears her, stepping out of the way to avoid any bumping. She half-raises an arm to salute but, after a moment's thought, deems to be improper, shore-leaved as they are. So she turns it into a stilted half-wave.

Foster stops, shaken from whatever it was that had drawn his focus, and blinks a few times, recognition coming slow to his features. Finally he manages a smile, and quickly pulls his hat off, tucking it under his arm. Her name is spoken with a question, as if he's unsure he's got it right. "Joanna? How are you?"

Joanna narrows her eyes at Foster quizzically, for his blinking and lack of recognition, though as she smooths her skirt some understanding dawns on her. "Yes, sir," she says, as if to confirm it is, indeed, her. "Fine. Very well, actually. I must admit it's a nice change of pace to get my feet on land again, as it were."

Foster manages a slight chuckle and glances to the north, where the shipyards lie. "It takes me a while to get used to. They say you can tell an old sailor when he's on land." He leans toward her and says in a conspiratory stage whisper, "He leans." With that he straightens and looks around the shops. "Well, what have you come looking for? I've managed to familiarize myself with a few of the shops here."

Joanna laughs at that. "Well, you seem straight enough from this angle, sir. Me? Oh, just odds and ends." She purses her lips, one hand on her hip as she surveys the market. "I could use some more thread. Doctor Renteria wouldn't look kindly on me if I kept borrowing his. I'd like to pick up some fresh cigarettes, as well. The prices seem quite criminal for anything decent, but I suppose that's unavoidable, state of the world and all."

Foster grins, one could actually call it mischeviously, and he tilts his head toward one of the shops. "I've been here before, remember the owner. Decent prices." He leans toward her, extending an elbow. "Care to join me?"

Joanna hesitates, brow furrowing, as if thumbing through Navy rules and regulations in her head as to the protocol for shopping with one's captain. But she doesn't seem to come upon anything too damning. "That sounds precisely what I'm looking for, sir. Thank you." She eyes his elbow for another half moment but, again, can't seem to find anything terribly wrong with taking it.

As Joanna takes Foster's elbow, he puts his hat back into place and takes her a few doorways down toward the smoke shop. "The last time I was here… God, was it really seven years ago? Anyway, the selection of tobaccos they had for pipes was certainly worth the trip. I know of a particular admiral that tours the shipyard once a year. Requests the duty, as a matter of fact, specifically so he can visit."

"This is my first time in Plymouth, sir," Joanna says, inhaling as they near the smoke shop. Trying to pick up the smell of tobacco past the heavier, less pleasant odors of fish, sea and dock industry. "Well, if it's good enough for an admiral I'll certainly give it a try. That reminds me, I should get a package of tea as well while I've the chance. It'd be nice to have a choice of something besides whatever's on the kettle in the galley. Perhaps a few paperbacks as well. There are plenty of books I haven't read, and I've little excuse not to out at sea."

"Books? Maybe I have to raise your duties." Foster deadpans, then grins wide, managing a chuckle at his own joke. "Small joke… I don't know about paperbacks, never was too fond of 'em. Tea, though, I can show you the right spot for. I've been by once already, but there's a place here that sells English Breakfast that'll get up out of the cup and dance on your tongue." He stops and gestures toward the door of the shop, indicating that she move ahead of him.

Joanna grins at that. "I'll take you up on that, sir. The tea, that is." She slips into the shop, her grin widening as she can get a proper whiff of tobacco, mostly unfiltered through fish. "I hope the gentleman who runs this place won't think ill of me for wanting cigarettes instead of pipe tobacco. A pipe always seemed like a great deal of effort to go through for a smoke."

"The effort is what makes it worth it, Joanna." Foster admonishes. "It's the taste, and the soothing effect of sitting with a pipe, that make smoking a pipe an enjoyable experience. A cigarette is… I don't know, it's like eating bread when you could have toast." He shakes his head to clear the thought, then answers with a "I doubt he will. Enough sailors come in here looking for them, I'm sure."

Joanna seems unsure whether it'd be proper to laugh at that or not. Still, she can't hold back a faint chuckle. "Perhaps I lack the patience to savor the whole experience. Cigarettes have always served me well enough. A habit I picked up in boarding school, actually. Long before I ever joined the Navy." She chuckles again. "You'd be *quite* surprised at the filthy habits some well-born girls have."

"Oh, I've heard stories." A pause. "Not all sailors are the gentlemen they should be." Foster smirks slightly and moves over toward the counter then, and introduces Joanna to the shopkeeper, Murdoch by name. "He'll get you set up right quick, just be careful not to let him talk you into the 'special blend'." The captain and the shopkeeper share a laugh at that, but Foster turns and gives Joanna a warning glance. Apparently he meant it.

Joanna does laugh properly at that, complete with a snort. "Sailors? Not gentleman? Impossible, sir!" Her eyebrows arch at mention of the 'special blend'. She quickly shakes her head at the shopkeeper, not wanting any part of it. She leans her arms on the counter, eyeing Murdoch's selection, and after some preliminary chit-chat she gets herself set up with a few packs of decent-quality cigarettes. She eyes the cigarette cases on display as well, while her tobacco is being bagged. "What do you think of that, sir?" she asks, pointing to one metal case with a stylized anchor done on the lid. "From a man's perspective, I mean."

"Says you're trying too hard." Foster responds, without a second thought. "Try something that you'd like whether you were on a boat or not." His own eyes were on a selection of tobaccos hidden behind the counter with a few small labels displaying just what blend they are.

"Oh, not for me," Joanna says quickly. "I was thinking, as a gift." A beat later she adds, hastily, "For my fiance, that is. Andrew's supposed to come down for a few days from Portsmouth while we're docked here. I wanted to get him a…" She frowns, searching for precisely the right word. "…a peace offering, I suppose you could call it."

"Not happy with the assignment, is he?" Foster asks, not quite looking over at Joanna. "I don't think an anchor is a good way to say 'sorry I'm in the navy'."

Joanna smirks faintly. "You've a point there. Perhaps just something plain with his initials instead. I don't suppose you know someone who does engraving?" she asks Murdoch hopefully. To Foster, she shrugs. "He wasn't keen on my taking the assignment on the Viperous, no. We…didn't exactly part well. Though I don't see what got his feathers in a tizzy about it. He's a Royal Navy man himself. Logistics. I'd have thought he'd understand, if anyone would."

"Was he happy with your WREN posting on base?" Foster asked, then points out a few tobaccos he'd like to purchase. Seems a year or more of wartime pay treats a Lt. Cmdr. fairly well. When Murdoch responds that he does know an engraver, but it could take a few days, Foster then turns to Joanna, awaiting her response.

Logan arrives from the North.

Joanna nods to Murdoch. "A few days will be fine, thank you. So long as I can have it before the week is out. I'll be back when it's ready" She indicates a plain metal case, lacking in any anchors or other fishy symbols. She pays for her cigarettes then and there, the mid-grade tobacco not quite as fine as what Foster's buying. But she is still on a Midshipman's pay grade. Turning back to Foster she shrugs again. "We were stationed together in Portsmouth. That's where we met. I suppose he thought I'd while away the war there on the beach." She sniffs primly. She and Foster are in a tobacco shop located on the Barbican, investing in some smokes.

Logan walks through the streets, not really drunk, but in love, and singing, in the low bass Foster heard before, "…and then I'll take her to the beach and love will be made, and I'll tell ev'ry one in Hawaii the /real/ way to be laaaiiid!" He spots the two in the store and walks in behind them.

Foster chuckles quietly, and glances out of the corner of his eye at her. "Maybe he simply is afraid of losing you at sea. I know I'd not want my wife-to-be out on a ship… in a place that even he more than likely deems too dangerous to go and do himself." He then takes the collected bags of tobacco, and quietly slides them into his own bag and pays a somewhat surprisingly large sum. When he hears drunken singing behind him, he doesn't even look up. "Evening, O'Reily."

The singing wafting along the street catches Joanna's attention, bringing a faint blush to her cheeks. She clears her throat. "O'Reily. You're enjoying your shore leave, I take it?" She seems torn between smirking and blushing some more. She clears her throat, nodding a little to Foster. "Perhaps he is just concerned, but we all have to do our part. Not that there aren't plenty of vital jobs to be done on shore." That seems to be the only defense of her fiance's service she can summon up. "I rather think he just needed some time to adjust to the idea. We've both had a few months to cool our heads. I'm sure our visit will be quite pleasant." She tries to sound enthusiastic, and sort of fails.

Logan walks up to a wall in the smoke shop, his usually neat tie havinf found it's way around the young, and dare I say dashing, sailor's head, he looks to Jo, "Aye, been drinkin' like I did back in Ireland. Liquor's not nearly as good, but it'll pass with me." He can be heard muttering, "Most things pass with me really." He stares off in the distance after saying this, not really thinking…just looking.

Foster is apparently amused by Logan's words, but he turns a somewhat concerned gaze on Joanna. "Everyone's got a duty. Just been my experience that you either love or hate shore duty, and think anyone that wants to do the other is loony." He pauses slightly and lowers his voice, "If you feel a sudden need to take on an extra duty aboard, I can make that happen." He then turns toward Logan, speaking up, "So, how's the dancing over there?" Apparently he is asking about the bar.

Joanna eyes the tie. 'Round Logan's head as it is. She purses her lips, to hold back any sounds of amusement it might inspire. "Yes, you do look like you're having quite a…passable time." Laughing or not, her mood does visibly improve. She shakes her head at Foster, though that's only after a moment of consideration. "I think I'll try not working for awhile, sir. But I'll keep that in mind. Dancing?" Mention of that sparks her interest.

Logan glances up with interest at Foster, "Well I went to the bar, bought a couple bottles, and went to Union Street, /lots/ of good dancing there." He gives Foster a nudge as if to say, 'If you know what I mean.'

"I bet." is all Foster says in regards to the nudge, and glances over toward Joanna. "Up for a drink? My treat." He then looks over toward Logan, "You too."

Logan before Joanna can answer wraps his arms around the captain, "Yea know how ta treat an Irishman cap'n!"

Joanna does laugh at the idea of dancing on Union Street. Perhaps not knowing precisely what Logan means. She does look tempted at the offer for a drink but, after a moment's thought, she shakes her head. "Thanks for the offer, sir, but I'll have to pass right now. I need to check the telegram office before it closes today. Andrew's supposed to send word of which train he's arriving on. Another time, perhaps."

Logan pats Foster on the back, "Looks like we'll 'ave to stop by Union Street if we want a pretty lady to have a pint with us Captain."

Foster chuckles at the mention of Union Street and instead just shakes his head. "Oh, I'm sure we'll figure something out." He pauses then, taking amoment to shake Logan loose as gently as possible before continuing. "Alright O'Reily, let's get going." He moves his way toward the door and nods. "I'll meet you over there. For now, I need to drop these off first."

"I'll be back for the case in a couple of days, Mister Murdoch," Joanna says to the shop's owner, tucking her cigarettes into her handbag. "Captain, thank you for showing me this place. I can see why the Admiral frequents it. Enjoy yourselves, gentleman." With that, she offers them a half-wave, half-salute and heads out onto the street.

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