Lackadaisy belongs to the amazing Tracy J. Butler, not me. She's simply nice enough to let her fans write fanfiction about her characters.

So, I meant to start this forever and an age ago, but life got in the way. I adore Ivy, and someone suggested some Ivy one shots, so here's the first. Enjoy!

Girl Talk

Sitting alone in the corner booth of the Little Daisy Café, Ivy stared out the window at the passing pedestrians. The lunchtime rush was winding down, allowing Atlas' gang to inhabit most of the surrounding booths, chatting and laughing so loud one could scarcely hear themselves think. On most days the vibrant young lady would be in the thick of it all, asking the men about their latest adventures, showing off her new shoes, or perhaps teasing Viktor about his fashion sense (or lack thereof). But today, none of the men could get her to so much as smile in their direction, and had collectively agreed to leave her be for the moment.

Mitzi, however, had been keeping an eye on her the whole time, a worried crinkle settling on her usually flawless face. She knew that something was up with her little helper, and when not even the crazy new violinist, Rocky, had managed to coax a laugh from her, she knew it was something big. And if her women's intuition was right (and it always was), Ivy was in desperate need of a female confidant. She only hoped she could help, she didn't have that much experience with teenage girls.

With the majority of the real customers gone and the gang otherwise occupied, the elegant hostess decided it was time to make her move. She sauntered over to the little corner booth carrying a plate of chocolate cake and a glass of milk.

"Penny for your thoughts, sweetie?"

Ivy glanced at her, then back at the street. "It's nothing, Ms. M. I'm fine."

Not to be fooled, she set the cake on the table and slid into the seat across from her. "Bull. Honey, anybody can see something's bothering you. Now come on, let's hear it."

Ivy sighed. "Well, yeah it's something, but I don't know why it's such a big deal. It's not like he'll ever notice me anyway…"

Mitzi blinked, then smiled. "Ah, so it's boy trouble." Ok, this was something she could handle. Maternal instincts she may lack, but knowledge of men? That she had in abundance. Her tone turned teasing, "So who is this dashing rogue who's stolen away your heart?"

Ivy fiddled with a fork, glancing over to Atlas' table. "I don't wanna say, Viktor might overhear, and you know how protective he gets!"

Stifling a laugh, the former singer patted her hand affectionately. "Don't worry, those men are so clueless there could be a circus in the middle of the floor and they wouldn't notice. Now who is this mystery man? I'm aquiver with anticipation!"

Finally nibbling on a bite of cake, Ivy looked slightly dreamy. "Chris, the delivery boy. He has such a nice smile." Her face then twisted into a pout. "But he always treats me like I'm a little kid, even though he's only a few years older than me!"

Mitzi tsked sympathetically. "Boys. They never see what's right in front of their noses until you whack them with a rolled up newspaper." She stole a bite of the cake. She was actually rather enjoying herself. She and Atlas had never really talked about having children, but she was, in a way, relishing this odd sort of mother-daughter bonding one could only get from a young lady confiding about her latest crush.

"So how do I get him to see me?" the teen griped. "He's such a nice fella, but he always looks at me like I'm just another kid!"

"Well," she mused, rubbing her chin thoughtfully, "I'd try dressing up for him a bit. After all, the first time Atlas really noticed me was when I was preforming in the Mata Hari dress; he couldn't take his eyes off me! You have some nice clothes, and I'm sure I have a few frocks that would fit you if you'd like." Now she really felt like a mother, lending the girl her old dresses in hopes of helping along her love life. It was becoming strangely gratifying.

Ivy immediately perked up. "You mean it?"

Mitzi chuckled at her enthusiasm. "Only if you finish your cake." The girl immediately started eating with gusto. "I'd also suggest you talk to him, show him you're a grown woman and that he should treat you as one. You'll get his respect, and you'll certainly get his attention."

Within minutes, Ivy was done with her cake, wiping the crumbs off her chin. "Ms. M., how do you know he'll listen?"

"How could he not? You're a beautiful, strong-willed young woman. What man could resist?" Getting up, she carried the now clean plate over to the counter, only to nearly drop it when Ivy excitedly hugged her.

"Ms. M. you're the best!" With that the girl dashed upstairs, leaving a smiling hostess in her wake.

She turned at a small cough from across the room. "So, what was that all about?" Atlas asked jovially. The men, having seen Ivy excitedly run off, had finally turned away from their shop-talk.

A rather mischievous smile found its way to her full lips. "Oh, she just needed advice on how to look more womanly."

"Vhy she need to do that?" Viktor growled, green eye glaring. Even Mordecai seemed vaguely interested. It wasn't often that Atlas' little ray of sunshine looked so gloomy, and he was curious as to why the girl would want to look more adult.

Before she could answer, Ivy's voice called down the stairs, "Ms. M. do you thing Chris'd notice me if I wore the Mata Hari dress?"

It was then that Mitzi May witnessed a rather amusing spectacle. Atlas' cigar fell from his mouth, Zib choked on his drink, Mordecai started reaching for his gun, and Viktor got the murderous look in his eye. She couldn't help but laugh. Well, this relationship was already on its way to disaster, but she'd be more than happy to help out the young lady again. After all, sometimes a woman needs to play mother.

XXX

Whoot! I had this written in my notebook forever, but finally managed to type it up. It also helps that I'm wearing my 1920s reporter/gangster costume and listening to the Chicago soundtrack while writing, it really helps put me in the mood! So, hopefully this will be just the first in a series of one shots revolving around Ivy. My plan is for them to be based on memories Mordecai mentioned in my other story, "The Message." Read that if you want an idea as to the other one-shots, or feel free to make new suggestions, I'll gladly take them into account! Please review!