Disclaimer : I own nothing.

What Goes Around

He usually hated these crowds; nothing but politicians and beaurecrats. He did, however, know how to mingle with them and schmooze his way to manipulation. Besides, he always liked the open bar.

Sitting at said bar, leaning back on his stool he grinned at the bar tender, his eyes roaming to her chest. "I'll take a scotch on the rocks, darling."

She rolled her eyes but went to work, pretending not to notice his eyes on her backside. Eddie lit up another cigar, glancing around the room. Everyone was hard at work making themselves out to be Godlike - immaculate clothing and jewelry, expensive cologne, polite fake smiles. Hell, even he'd fallen into it, with his shined shoes and slicked back hair. A fine man indeed.

The bar tender brought him back his drink, placing it in front of him. He looked down at it and smiled, "Thanks sugar." he handed her a dollar tip and sipped it slowly, a slick grin on his face still.

"Look who's here," he heard in a conversation going on not far from him, "It's that Jupiter girl."

He arched his brow and turned around.

"Oh yeah," another voice says, "She's back again? Just had a baby didn't she?"

Eddie strained to look through the crowds until he caught sight of a frizzy head of hair. Sally. He hadn't seen her in nearly a year now. He sat back and decided to watch her as she made her way through the crowd, shaking hands and laughing and kissing cheeks. Such a charming girl, he thought, that's why I liked her.

Schexnayder wasn't far behind her, and Eddie noticed the bundle in his arms. It wasn't just a coat like all the other whipped husbands were carrying either, it was a baby decked out in white fur. Eddie almost laughed, surely they'd be the ones to dress their little brat up like a baby doll and bring it to a party. He saw Larry approaching Sally while she was chatting with some women, and tapped her on the shoulder. Oh the commotion when the women saw the baby, choruses of "How cute!" and "She has your eyes!" were shouted as they all reached out to hold it.

Sally was laughing now, soft wrinkles in her cheeks and forehead that he rarely saw but thought looked lovely on her. She was nodding and moving her hands about as they all spoke in a conversation he couldn't hear. He sipped his drink and took her in, looking her over now that she was in better sight. She was wearing her classic yellow but it was in the form of a formal gown now, sweeping down to the floor and cut just below her shoulder. The belle of the ball.

He sighed, watching her from afar was nothing compared to what he'd previously known. What he wanted to know again. It didn't even matter that that pompous husband of her's was there, he was going to have her tonight.

To his delight Larry came and took the baby in his arms, saying something to the crowd of women, and walked away. Sally nodded her goodbyes and made her way to the bar, right into his territory.

"Can I get a gin and tonic?" she asked the girl and sat down a few seats from him, not noticing him.

He got up and walked over to her, sitting down next to her.

"Sally."

She looked over, and when she recognized him there was a quick glimmer of fear in her eyes. It subsided though, "Eddie."

"How's life been treating you?"

She shrugged, "Well, I suppose."

"I see you have a new baby."

"Yeah. Yeah I do."

"Schexnayder treating you nice?"

She furrowed her brow, "Yes, of course."

Eddie nodded. The drink was placed in front of her and as soon as she saw it she picked it up and took a long swig of it.

"Slow down, there."

She shot him an angry glance, "Mind your own business, Eddie."

"I was just - "

"Sally," Larry's voice came as he walked up to the bar, "What's going on?"

"Nothing, nothing. Look, Eddie Blake is here."

"I can see." Larry said disapprovingly, "Maybe you should head over to see Shirley Donelly? She's over there, I just saw her."

"Oh yes, sure I will. Let me finish my drink."

Eddie stared down into his drink, suddenly muted by the introduction of the other man. Larry wasn't moving, he was just standing next to her as she drank. Overprotective, Eddie thought, creepy.

He looked up and saw the tiny baby in Larry's arms. Her face peeked out of the mounds of fur in her outfit, two little dark eyes staring at him.

"This the tyke?" he said, pointing to the baby.

"Yes." Larry said coldly.

The baby was still staring at him wide eyed. Kids had always been creepy to him like that, staring at you all the time.

"Can I hold her?" he asked boldly.

Sally almost choked on her drink, and Larry visibly stiffened. After an awkward moment Sally nodded, "Yeah, it's fine."

Reluctantly Larry placed the child in his arms.

Eddie laughed, "You know it's rude staring at me like that!" the baby gave a little coo but still stared up. "What's her name?"

"Laurel Jane." Sally said, finishing off her drink.

"That's nice." he said, shifting the baby in his arms, "Do you like this? All this fur? I'm sure you must be hot in there, kid, here," he freed the baby of her hood.

She had a mop of dark hair that was long for such a young baby. It was an odd color. Not quite black, just very dark brown.

Hair almost the same color as his own.

His heart sunk to his stomach.

She cooed, happy to be free of the restraining clothing, and poked her tiny fingers up at him, trying to grab his moustache. He took one of her hands and placed his finger in her grip.

"She is an angel." he said to them as they looked on.

Laruel broke eyes with him and looked back at her mother, her little mouth moving as if she was hungry.

"Well, I think you parents want to go talk to some of their friends. But it was nice meeting you, Laruel Jane. Good luck, kid."

Larry took the baby out of his arms, "C'mon, Sally."

She nodded but waited a moment after he'd gone.

"I'm sorry, Eddie." she said, standing up, "Maybe I'll see you around?"

"Yeah. Maybe."

She leaned over and kissed him on his scarred cheek. "Goodbye."

He watched them go, watched until they were completely out of sight on the other side of the room.

He slunched over in his seat, thinking about her. Thinking about the tiny dark eyes.

The bar tender pointed at his empty drink, "Another?"

"Yeah, why not."

She poured him a new one, and noticing his new demeanor she asked, "Who was that? Old flame?"

"Something like that."

She nodded, "So is life."

Now it was her turn to grin.