The Hunt Is On

past_doctor_icon.png past_zan_icon.png

Where: Las Vegas

When: August 21, 1955; late night

What: Trailing behind Rylie is no easy task, and no one is above suspicion.

That costume closet is much the same. Crowded racks of clothes with too much flare for modern times. Except maybe for showgirls. But that isn't what this place is for, perhaps unfortunately. Some jazzy music plays from the main room, Nat King Cole's voice unfamiliar now-a-days, but no less impressive. More so, for being in person.

Rylie isn't waiting there, and who knows how long she's been off on her own in 1955, which could mean any amount of trouble. But since that isn't her on stage (quite obviously), it's hard to say where she is, exactly. But there are plenty of people about, so the place must not be shut down yet.

Dropping his pack onto a single shoulder, Zan pulls the zipper apart in order to dig out the papers he'd found back at Rylie's place. As he walks through the back stage area of the club, he starts skimming over the pages, attention split between searching for any sign of his girlfriend int he immediate location while hunting for a clue of where she might have gone. "…Maybe Thisbe," he whispers to himself, adding her to the list of faces to find. It's a place to start, after all.

The papers are oddities. The old one is folded open to the obituaries, where Thisbe's face looks out at him from the yellowing paper. Her real name — Barbara Fisher — and some vaguely regretful words frame it. Apparently, it was suicide. But then, one of the print outs shows the same day's obituaries, with Thisbe no where to be seen. Which is good news, surely. But another shows her marrying some craggy old guy, a few months down the road, and another print out claims that the girl is murdered a mere month after her wedding. Circumstances Questionable, the paper says, and Rylie has that bit highlighted.

There are other things highlighted, but Zan's examination is interrupted when a girl with an empty tray grabs his arm. "If you're looking for Thisbe, doll, she's in the kitchens crying her eyes out. Bring her a cigarette, huh?" But this woman seems to figure he knows where the kitchens are, because she's off a moment later, with just a parting look over his attire. It's a little strange.

"So not good," Zan says to himself as he reads the paper. He's well enough engrossed in the papers and his own hunting that the server isn't noticed until she's grabbed his arm. He almost jumps, papers crumpling to hide their contents as he looks at her in surprise. It's a long moment before he finds his voice again, the word coming out not so much harshly whispered as murmured.

"Kitchen," he repeats, nearly turning the word into a question. If his clothing choices are given odd looks, he seems not to notice. Time to fix his look as he goes. The papers are crammed back into his pack as he turns to find his way to the kitchens. As he walks, he keeps a look out for anything he might use to blend in a bit better, a hat, jacket. Just to borrow, though it's not likely he'll see the owner again soon. He hopes.

Backstage is the best place to find such things. Zan can find enough to fit in, even if he doesn't look to be the most fashionable around. And he ends up wandering for a little while, until he happens across the right set of doors.

And within, Thisbe sits among the organized chaos of the kitchen, sobbing into a towel. She's a little disheveled, but mostly in one piece. The people working the kitchen don't seem to be bothered by her being there, nor by Zan coming into their domain. But then, they might jut be a little too busy to care.

A jacket and hat it is, the hat set at an angle to obscure his features just a little, jacket pulled on, though it may not matter with the pack hanging off his shoulder. Zan tips the hat back a little after he pushes into the kitchen, scanning over the cooks and cleaners until he's found the woman.

"Thisbe," comes tentatively as he approaches her. A little wary, given their last encounter, promises he can't quite recall in the form of a note standing out in his mind. "What's… why're you upset?"

Thisbe looks up from her towel, eyes red and puffy, but rather than a sorrowful expression, she fixes Zan with a rather scathing one instead.

"Oh. And here's the other one," she says in a tone that's just too snappy to be dismissive, as much as she might try. "What are you coming for this time, hmm? You broke my heart and she stole my spin in the spotlight, so what's next? Shall I point you to where you can find my dog to kick or something?"

"What?" Zan can't help but ask the most obvious question. He chases it away with a shake of his head. "No," he amends with a glance toward the kitchen staff. He takes a step closer to Thisbe, enough to speak in hushed tones, and squats down to one side but facing her still. "I was trying to help… Look. I'm here looking for the singer. The girl I was with last time. Have you seen her? Do you know where she might be?"

"I seen her, but not for long. Once I told her to get lost, she took off. Where she went after that, I couldn't tell ya. Or care." Thisbe sniffles once, sitting up straighter before she brings herself to her feet.

"The Doc gave her a ride," says one of the workers, who gets a dirty look from Thisbe for his help, "Can't say where they went for sure, but his office is two blocks south." The man shrugs in Zan's direction before turning back to his work, apparently not too worried about Thisbe's displeasure.

Zan rises out of his crouch as Thisbe stands. "Why'd you do that," he asks. Accusation is just barely kept out of his tone. Barely. "Why…" He trails off as the worker cuts in, turning to look at him instead. "The Doc? Two blocks south… What kind of car does he drive?"

Answers aren't forthcoming this time, as Thisbe just huffs at him before she storms out, leaving doors swinging behind her. The best he gets on the car is another shrug. He doesn't know, or never paid attention. And since a trio of girls rush in with new orders, his attention shifts away from Zan and his little problem.

Letting out a sigh, Zan drags a hand up over his head. It upsets the hat a little, skewing it further as he turns to find his way out of the kitchen. He pushes through the doors and starts picking his way for an exit. The real exit and not the one to take him back to present time. He starts scanning the patronage, looking for someone free enough to give him directions, maybe information on 'The Doc', though he'll keep working his way toward that office, two blocks south.

Everyone he manages to ask seems to know the Doc, and while they all agree on his description and the direction of his office, no one seems to really know what he's about. Some assume he's a doctor of medicine, but others think he works for the government. Whoever he is, most seem to like him, so he must leave a good impression.

His steps, and gathered directions, lead him exactly two blocks south and one block east to a small building with a wide, but curtained, window next to a singular door. The door reads DOCTOR'S OFFICE in bold letters, but that's as descriptive as it gets. And although it's night now, and well into it, there's a light on inside and the sound of someone moving about within.

"Simpler times," Zan says to himself as he walks along. He can't help but admire the community feel of all the different people he's spoken to, even briefly. A lot of help given to a stranger, even one dressed as oddly as him. He's not blind to the sights either, though he doesn't linger to admire or sight see, staying on task of following directions and finding 'The Doc'.

Almost, he's taken aback by the sign on the door, no way expecting the office to be marked so obviously. He even cracks a slight and minute grin. His gaze flicks to the windows then the street as he knocks lightly against the door. His other hand grasps the knob to turn and enter just a few seconds after his announcement that he's arrived.

Bells chime over the door as Zan enters, and all the noise draws the attention of a man on the other side of the room. He's tall, dark and classically handsome, like something out of a movie, although just now, it probably isn't considered classically handsome. He's just pulling a door shut behind him, and his eyebrows lift in surprise at the sight of the younger gentleman standing there. Unlike the other weird looks he's gotten for his state of dress, this man seems to take it in stride. Not surprised.

"It's awfully late, isn't it," he says, his voice accented with something vaguely east coast. He takes a moment to lock the door before he crosses over to his desk.

There's something off about this room. It isn't quiet obvious what, but for Zan, it's a feeling that settles in. An itch at the back o the mind. But then, of course, this whole world is a little of center, for him.

"Wh.. Yes, sir," Zan replies, pull the door closed behind him. He takes a quick look around, and then a long, and maybe unsettled examination of his surroundings. "…I'm sorry. I'm looking…" Giving himself a mental shake, he pulls the hat from his head and turns his attention to the doctor. Or whom he assumes is the doctor. "You picked up a young woman, close to my age, from the Moulin Rouge today. At least… I think… They said I could find the Doc here. And hopefully some answers to where my girlfriend is."

"You're in the right place for the Doctor. Most just call me Doc. Come in and have a seat." He gestures to the chairs on the other side of his desk while he sits on the other side. "Why don't you start with your name." Doc pulls over a cup of coffee, which might explain why he's up this late, while he smoothly slides some paperwork into a desk drawer.

At least he knows he's found someone. Sort of. Zan moves away from the door, but doesn't sit just yet. His eyes stray to the papers as they're removed from the desk then angle off toward the closed door. "My name?" His gaze returns to the fellow behind the desk. "Zan, nickname I picked up when I was little. Look." He shakes his head. "Doc, please. It's important that I find her. Do you know where she is?"

Those papers look like telegraphed memos from Zan's perspective. Hard to make out words, but the typing is distinct. The Doc looks up at Zan, head tilted just a touch. Curious. "Nice to meet you, Zan. So Rylie's yours, is she? Something to drink?" He stands, too, maybe unable to sit still. Or maybe unsettled because someone else is standing when he isn't. "Handful, isn't she? A bit… brazen." It's hard to say that that is much of a compliment, his last comment.

"A pleasure," Zan returns, though his tone is a little flat. Frustration warring with anxiousness. "Another time, maybe," he says of the offer, holding up his hat and shaking his head. "Doesn't matter what she is, I'm just looking for Rylie. Really. I don't need to sit or want a drink. Just please, where did you take my girlfriend?"

He pauses there, then points toward the door with that hat of his. He looks back at Doc, then to the door. "In there," he asks, though he doesn't wait for an answer, crossing the floor to open the closed door without invitation.

Doc watches as Zan crosses to the door, brow furrowing a bit. "I'm not sure I appreciate that implication, especially from someone who's barely met me." The door is, unfortunately, locked. But the Doc only smiles easily. "It's nothing so dastardly. She was in an altercation, I gave her a ride to a small diner not too far from here. She said she was going to call a friend from there. Didn't quite trust a stranger to take her home, I assume." Some of that is a lie, but the question is is it his lie or Rylie's.

Zan's hand tightens around the knob, finding it locked. He gives weight to Doc's words, without actually looking at the man, revisits that odd feeling as though it might burn a clue into his consciousness. "Please unlock this door and let me look inside. If she's not there, I'll take your word that she was left at a diner. And we'll go from there. But first, let me see what's on the other side of this door." He isn't loud when he speaks, but there's an edge, temper he keeps carefully controlled.

The man considers Zan for a moment, and after smoothing down his vest, he strides over to the door. He waits for Zan to step away before he places a skeleton key into the lock. The mechanism clicks, but Doc steps back to let the young man enter on his own.

Inside the door is a dark room that appears to be full of boxes. They're labeled with years, full of folders, which are then full of papers. All in all, it looks like a rather boring room, but the information must be valuable to the doctor all the same.

Zan moves away until the door is opened. He takes a small step in, looking over the boxes, at the dates. He takes another step into the room, far enough in to check corners before backing out again. He drags one hand over his head, fingers raking through his hair while he sighs, unable to mask his worry for that moment.

"I'm sorry, Doc," he offers quietly. He looks at the man he's addressing, searching. "You said a diner nearby. How long ago was that?"

"And hour. You'll forgive me if I assume you can find your way to Pearlies on your own." The Doctor watches Zan as he gestures toward the door. The front door. The look on his face is a prideful one, if wounded pride. It probably isn't every day he has to prove he hasn't abducted a young girl.

He doesn't wait for Zan to leave before he steps back to his desk to pour liquid from a flask into his cup of coffee. It's one of those nights.

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