sandandwater: (venice)
How did we get here?
Well, I used to know you so well, yeah.
But how did we get here?
Well, I think I know
[‘Decode’ – Paramore]

She wasn’t the same woman who left Venice at twenty-two. There were similarities, certainly and familiarities—the things that Alessandro recognized as Phillipa Kerr despite this new broken aura that surrounded the gaffer. But this wasn’t his brilliant star, this wasn’t the woman he had loved so fiercely and given so much of himself to; she was a pale imitation. A ghost. A shadow. It broke his heart.

He accepted that she hadn’t wanted to marry him and that she had wanted to return to New York. Love was that way at times, burned fast and bright and then was over. The memories would last and there would still be a student for him to mentor. There was no regret or animosity there; he only wanted her to be happy—happy and fulfilled. It was painfully clear to him that Pippa was neither of these things.

Pippa spent her days working like a thing possessed, not an artist enjoying her craft but a soul tortured and engulfed in a painful penance for sins imagined and transgressions he couldn’t begin to fathom. They had argued about this, the way she worked. He wanted her to slow down, rest more. Drink. Eat. Live and not merely exist. She steadfastly refused and on the days that he would voice his concerns, Pippa would only work harder and longer. At what, he didn’t know. She would not discuss it after his one derisive comment regarding molds and forms. This had been his error and her silence the price he would pay.

Alessandro accepted that as well. He insulted her unwittingly and the red-haired beauty would hold a grudge. Recognizably Pippa, such behavior was. It would have made him smile if the sheer stubbornness hadn’t turned into something far more disconcerting of late. The anger, he could deal with it was the sadness in her voice and the hollow look in her eyes that he didn’t like. Something was missing, a vital part of the young woman. Determination wasn’t security, working to near exhaustion wasn’t confidence and aloofness didn’t disguise fear. Whatever happened to change his former lover had been profound.

The maestro had the disheartening suspicion that that something had a name and that name was Rory Stone.
sandandwater: (passion)
“Oh, Ro…” his name was little more than a sigh that escaped on a whispered breath.

“…I do believe in you, Believer girl…” And the deafening roar of the audience made it difficult for her to hear the end of the song as she stood backstage, just out of sight, watching. He looked amazing, they all did, the entire band. Kreske, Junie…Sascha…Nil and Dave couldn’t have looked more at home, but it’s Rory, front and center with the microphone in his hand and the audience at his beck and call that held her attention. He finished the song—her song—with passion that drove the fans into a screaming, hand waving, foot stomping frenzy. They wanted more.

She wanted more.

The mid-point act pushed past her then, taking the stage to let Breaker Street have a much-needed breather. Rory walked right toward her. The hunger in his dark eyes unmistakable, the effects of the audience—all their wants and desires, their emotional demands—flowing through his veins and driving him to give in to compulsions not entirely his own had him wordlessly greeting her by pushing Pippa back against a wall, his mouth covering hers in a kiss meant to consume and possess.

Her lips parted eagerly, hungry for the taste of him and she inhaled deeply, lost in the heady scents of his sweaty skin and the leather he wore.

He didn’t ask permission, didn’t take the time to find out what she might want as he lowered his head to suck at the side of her neck, nip sharply at delicate skin. His hands were hot and rough as he ran them down her sides, over her hips, further still to bunch the fabric of her skirt and push it up. His knee slipped between both of hers, pushing her legs apart, one side and then the other, until he was wedged between them and she was pinned between his body and the wall.

She whimpered and tossed her head to the side and back again.

There was a light switch or wall plate; she didn’t know which, digging into her back right between her shoulder blades and it caused her to shift, squirm, press more fully against him. Her reward was the firm pressure of his hand between her thighs, his fingers hooking the crotch of her panties and pulling them to one side, exposing her completely. One-handed fumbling followed as he undid his pants, hitched her leg high on his hip and growled against her ear, “Mine.”

Fingers curled against soft fabric, twisting and pulling.

It was her turn to tug and struggle with his clothing. She worked buttons loose to open the front of his shirt and bare his chest, slipped her fingers under the thin cotton, skimmed his chest and traced the defined lines of abdomen. He didn’t allow her long for her exploration; he was too impatient for that. There wasn’t enough time for it. Lifting her, encouraging her to wrap her legs around his waist, Rory hissed a ‘yes’ against her shoulder then drove himself into her with animalistic want.

She gasped and arched her back sharply.

As she held onto him, hands on shoulders and ankles crossed behind his back, Pippa moaned. He felt good; she felt…full, whole, loved. Needed. He still needed her, for this if nothing else. Faster, harder, deeper—that light switch was digging into her flesh again. He was murmuring to her, voice gruff but the words—oh, the words were soft and tender. A muirnin rua. I love you. A chroi. My sweet. Phillipa. He came, finished just a quickly as he’d begun, barely taking the time to kiss her again before letting her back down and pulling away to set his clothes to rights.

“Oh, Ro…” she called his name again.

Bit her lip.

Woke up.

Perspiration-soaked and breathing heavily, she ran her hands over her face, down the length of her body. Her legs still trembled and she was all too aware of the slick wetness between her thighs. Lifting her hand to her lips, Pippa found that they weren’t bruised or swollen.

His kisses were no more real than the rest of her dream, vivid though it had been. This time, the cry that tore from her throat was pain-filled and misery-laden. She missed him. More than that, she needed him. Loved him.

Left him.

Pippa Kerr//Last Call//733

ooc: I've fast forwarded a bit for this prompt. It takes place several months from now. It should also be noted that since this is largely a dream, descriptions of what the crowds do to Rory [ profile] fey_fire are based on Pippa's understanding of the phenomenon and are not necessarily accurate. Lyrics to Believer Girl belong to Rory's mun.
sandandwater: (damaged love)
If it makes you happy // It can't be that bad // If it makes you happy // Then why the hell are you so sad

“It’s going to be like this from now on, isn’t it?”

“Hmm? Like what, sweet?”

“This. Us. Barely seeing each other and when we do…”Read more... )
sandandwater: ([short] down)
10. I'm easy as gin // I'm as gentle as sleep // But I'm not satisfied
(Deborah Conway – ‘I’m Not Satisfied’)

Saturday night and she’s back on the clock, working in the bar, being Last Call’s resident outstanding waitress. She doesn’t skip a table, mess up an order, spill a single drink. The bartenders are glad to have her around, she keeps her tabs organized and collects on them discretely and her empties never clutter their workspace. All the other servers are thrilled to let her sort out problems as they arise, figure the tips, juggle the schedules. It’s as if Pippa Kerr has never left. That two, almost three, month gap where she’d not worked a single shift couldn’t have been real. It feels just like old times.


The music is different. The band isn’t as good. They aren’t bad by any means and the customers seem to enjoy them a great deal but the red haired woman with a tray in her hand can’t keep herself from looking at the stage and seeing someone else up there. Breaker Street is gone; Rory Stone’s warm and melodic baritone isn’t going to wrap itself around her as she makes her way between tables. The set list full of familiar tunes won’t be there to flood her mind with memories, good or bad. She isn’t going to return the flirtatious smiles and winks of the lead singer when he manages to catch her eye.


For nearly two years now, she had a routine in this place. Wednesdays and Saturdays have been the touchstones of her life. Her security and stability. The crowd used to be made up of (mostly) familiar faces, the staff had been friends not just coworkers and the music—the music had been outstanding. The band had been good, too good as they finally managed to prove, and now they’d moved on to bigger and better things. With them went a lot of the regulars, their weekly habits changing during the ups and downs of trying to replace what had been the hallmark good time at Last Call.


As she closes up later, once all the patrons have gone and the band—what is their name again—has been paid, Pippa finds herself wondering how much more it’s going to change and whether or not she can change with it. Then it occurs to her as she’s walking to her car, alert and aware of Mike Owens standing in the doorway watching her, that she’s the one who has been changed. It’s still a bar, the music is still live and the drinks are still strong. The customers are happy to pay and the waitresses pleased to serve. She’s the one who is no longer the same.

Pippa Kerr//Last Call//441
sandandwater: ([short hair] head on)
Come as you are

She was ignoring him, curled up in a ball with her face buried in a pillow. He sat at the edge of the bed with his bare back towards her, head hanging and cradled between his hands. Not for the first time, Pippa had gone from hot to cold without warning and rebuffed him mid-advance. His hands on her where they pressed against her shoulder, the curve of her hip…his breath on the side of her neck didn’t bring forth feelings of desire and need. Instead, they called up memories of someone else touching her with far less compassion and she’d cried then screamed. Rory couldn’t comfort her when she got like this, she didn’t want him to.

As you were

Candlelight and tangled sheets covered their sweat-slicked skin as they continued to explore each other in a lazy, nearly sated manner. Her hands slipped over his chest, her head following with lips grazing skin, teeth nipping along familiar territory. At the sound of the deep and contented sigh escaping his lips, Pippa lifted her head to smile at him. Words weren’t needed; she knew that look and understood his unspoken request. Rory’s hands settled on her hips as she shifted, rose and straddled his waist. He smiled as her hands found purchase against his shoulders, moaned as she leaned forward to kiss him.

As I want you to be

Pippa watched him undress, peeling the damp shirt away from his body, kicking shoes across the floor. Listened as he unfastened the buckle to his belt, the rasp of the zipper undoing the denim he wore low on his hips. Closed her eyes and thought about joining him on the other side of the room. She’d press kisses along his spine, wrap her arms around his waist and sigh as his hands came to rest over hers. Eventually, Rory would turn and embrace her, lift her off the balls of her feet and bring her closer for a deep kiss. She’d tangle a hand in his shaggy hair and inhale deeply, lost in him even as he lost himself in her just as he used to do after every gig.

Pippa Kerr//Last Call//351
sandandwater: (big shades)
don’t want to lose it // it must be worth losing // if it is worth something
(Tori Amos – ‘Talula’)

don’t want to lose it

She loved regardless of the possible foolishness involved. She loved completely, with her whole self. She did what she had been raised to believe she shouldn’t, disregarding the restrictions placed on her by others. It also freed her in ways most people will never imagine or even comprehend. To this end, love was the tool that allowed her to become.

it must be worth losing

The second time it was a different kind of love. Love in progress, on the move. In the process of changing and attempting to define herself. A mother to her child—a child she would never know. The only way she could bring herself to feel, to care. She let it go, gave it away. Her choice, her decision, their acceptance. Love was a gift that allowed her to share.

if it is worth something

She found love again, halfway around the world. Love of herself, her passion and talent. Love of a new language and land. The simple act of creation and in destruction. Discipline and control, in escape and frivolity. She learned from the best, flourished under tutelage, made the knowledge her own. Love was a lesson in mastery and contradiction.

Pippa Kerr//Last Call//188 (not including lyrics)
sandandwater: (hot stuff)
Don't say it's easy to follow a process // There's nothing harder than keeping a promise

(Editors – ‘Blood’)

Bene, bene. Magnifico, bella.
” Alessandro murmured in quiet approval as he stood behind Pippa, absently twisting and turning her curly red locks in his hands, tucking them into the back of her shirt to keep her hair from being further singed in the fire’s heat. He was like that, gentle and quiet when she did something right. One little mistake and he’d be screaming in her ear, gesticulating wildly and cursing her into the next decade. He had a flair for the dramatic, to say the least. “
Per favore
, Pippa…keep going, do not take the time to think, just feel it,
. Feel the pull…let gravity,
si. Si
, like that.

She’d been there, in Italy, apprenticing with this man for nearly two years. So much learned and still feeling like so much more she needed to know. She had the basics, understood the process but now came the hard part. Learning to trust her instincts, knowing when to break the rules to let creativity reign.

Faster, hurry…” He was reaching for the pipe then, not controlling, merely assisting as she spun the heavy rod. Keeping it balanced for her, his hands so much larger and stronger. Calluses thicker. His sense of timing perfected. “Look at it, Pippa!
See what you make here,
la mia stella brillante

Pippa laughed at the praise, laughed more at grin on the old man’s face as they worked in tandem, watching as the glass thinned and flared, fanned out from the centrifugal force they were creating in the sweltering studio. Faster, they turned the pontil, hand over hand hers and his, moving in sync. “
Sei pazzo, Signore !
You’re crazy!”

Later that evening, hours later, they sat on the terrazzo steps that made up the front of Alessandro’s home, drinking wine bottled from vineyards belonging to his sister in Tuscany and sharing a loaf of bread baked fresh by his neighbor. Between them sat the vessel she had been spinning. A platter of vibrant colors, the process of marvering it—rolling it over a marble slab layered in chemicals to add color to the glass, all Pippa’s own doing. She’d done it all herself: the initial gathering of molten glass, forming the first bubbled shape with breath from her own lungs, the following gathers, back and forth to the marver, reheating it in the glory hole. All he had done was watch. Watch and spin as her second pair of hands.

That had been her job for the longest time. Today, master handed over the reins to the apprentice and let her take control. And she’d done
. He was proud, she could tell by the speculative glances he kept giving the platter. It had only been in the annealing oven for a few hours, the glass so thin that it didn’t take long for it to gradually cool. Very tricky, what she had done. Avoided the stress fractures common to a piece so delicate.

Mia bella
…you have the touch. A gift. It’s not only a talent, not just a skill. A gift.
” He took her hands in his, thumbs rubbing over the rough skin of her palms before lifting each, in turn, to his lips for a tender kiss. “A gift.”

, Alessandro…thank you. I couldn’t possibly—“

“No, no. You do not thank me for this, Phillipa. You thank the Mother Mary, you thank the Holy Father. You thank these.” He lifted her hands again, squeezed them tightly. “This gift I did not give to you, you had it all along. I see it. I knew. When you came around my shop. When you with that awful American Italian asked me for work. When you didn’t cry every time I yell at you. When you get burned and you kept working. I knew,

She smiled at him then, always picking on her Italian even as his English sometimes left something to be desired. She never once commented on it, even then she opted for, “I had a good teacher.”

“The best.” Oh, that machismo. He had it in spades. He dropped one of her hands to run a finger along the rim of her glass. “This is very good. Very lovely.”

Releasing her other hand he lifted the platter and looked her right in the eye. “But is only one piece. Promise you can do it again, just the same.”

She bit her bottom lip as she returned his gaze, blue eyes fixed on dark brown. It was a challenge; she recognized it. Pippa had been flying high all evening with a sense of accomplishment but he’d never let her get too full of herself. Alessandro was a good teacher for a reason. “I promise.”

.” He let go of her platter and watched it shatter across the terrazzo, a million glimmering slivers catching the moonlight. “Tomorrow.”

“I promise.”

Pippa Kerr//Last Call//802
sandandwater: (lover)
06. In pitch dark I go walking in your landscape
(Radiohead – 'There, There')

People often mistook Phillipa Kerr for someone innocent and perhaps even entirely prudish. These people didn’t know her very well. She preferred it that way, truth be told. Some things were better left to privacy and the imagination. Intimacy lost all meaning if you shared the details with just anyone, after all.

In pitch dark I go walking in your landscape )

How well she knew him.

Pippa Kerr//Last Call//307
sandandwater: (come hither)
Hello, I'm Pippa Kerr. If you're into the nightlife on Staten Island (and anyone in Manhattan making snide remarks, kindly keep them to yourselves, please) you've probably seen me or at least know of the bar I wait tables at most nights. Last Call. Live music five nights a week, karaoke and open mic nights on alternating Fridays. Wednesdays and Saturdays are the best nights though. My personal favorites play then: Breaker Street.

I talk about them a lot, I do. But I do it with good reason, they are amazing. And really, Last Call is great. Good crowds, good service, the drinks are never watered down. And me, I'm there to be your waitress.

I suppose I should tell you a little bit more about myself. I'm a native New Yorker, I actually love living on Staten though that is not where I grew up. I have a puppy named Mr. Beaker who is just adorable and I like riding pillion when my boyfriend has his motorcycle.

Oh, and I blow glass in my spare time.


sandandwater: (Default)

October 2009

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