The Japanese art of mending precious pottery with gold:

Let us consider that we are all insane. It will explain us to each other; it will unriddle many riddles.
-Mark Twain.

This place looks awful ritzy. They don't serve those weird, skinny pancakes here, do they?

The pancakes on the white plate in front of Mordecai had gone cold over half an hour ago, but the fork pressing into them, chopping almost insignificant pieces off and then leveling it into the quiet assassin's rigid but open mouth would tell you that the heat and the taste did not matter. Only finishing the three flat, circular abominations that were called breakfast mattered.

Though, breakfast had ended and it was technically closer to lunch, so perhaps he should be saying for brunch, but he shut those thoughts out and continued; well aware that the waitress that had served him (she'd made a face when he didn't just order black coffee and French toast like he always did, but then she'd remembered the day and given him a look filled with water in her eyes and a soft, mournful smile and then gone off before his mind could consider all of the pros and cons of stabbing her and walking out the door to let Zib or Mitzi deal with the body; it certainly would have taken their minds off of the day's events) was serving the other few patrons and occasionally glancing back over to him like she was actually concerned for his well-being.

Snorting in the most dignified way, he lifted the syrup pitcher and added even more of the slowly and sappy liquid to the top of the pile, happy to feel his gloves in his pocket where there were clean and safe, rather than on his hands where they would have stuck to the handle of the pitcher like the fur on his hand.

The last piece of the first pancake traveled down his throat and he sighed over the other two butchered things.

For some reason it seemed preternaturally quiet, despite all the other people around, even at the front on the roundabout seats where the light from the exterior windows bounced shine everywhere and he could see people passing by; children and parents, the waitress taking more orders, "...my, and isn't that a wide smile to match the eggs in the window..." and the scraping of wood and stone in the back that everyone else that passed through assumed was remodeling or, horrors, rats.

Hey, I remember you—'Ol Serious Face! Boy, have I heard stories about you.

Mordecai's ears picked up the sounds of that awful car he'd seen in front of the Little Daisy since Mitzi had been trying to alleviate it from the gutter and his sharp eyes looked up along the lines of his glasses to find the dead man's…cousin? Sibling?... being herded soothingly out of the scrap heap by Miss Pepper. One looked not unlike most of Mordecai's victims after he forgot about them to take care of a partner or so and went back to find them with eyes wide open, face pale as the moon and blood draining from the holes in them that made them lighter, but messy; the other looked just sad, tail down low and hair less shiny, probably from the absence of hair lacquer in respect for the other mourners at the funeral that had most likely ended an hour or so ago.

His fork stabbed one end of the second pancake, folded it over to pin to the other side and stuffed the entire thing into his mouth, gnawing it like a giant noodle. Saliva formed behind his tonsils to make swallowing a little easier, but there was still a little pain, water behind his eyes being the body's involuntary response to the nausea that accompanied the feeling as well as the taste.

He preferred that nobody knew he had been there that long because of such a large stack—for him. The pancake on the bottom, at least, was still warm, butter smeared and steam enfolding from its sticky body.

The bell above the door chimed its sound of dishes knocking hard into a sink where they would crack and Miss Pepper steered the miserable looking young man through, nodding absently at the waitress.

She spotted Mordecai and paused to look at him twice (her complexion jolted up a memory Mordecai recalled of time past with his mother when his first sister was still in her little wicker basket of a crib and she had kept old world photos of their ancestry tied with knitting yarn and bound in faded leather buckskin—she still didn't know he had snuck a glance at black and white celluloid prints of wedding days, births and people set on bedding or in boxes in luxurious drapery meant only for their passing because of nature or mortal hand or—and those photos were few, the clothing less expensive in regard to shame—means of their own) to, probably, confirm that he was actually there.

She smiled at him as she pulled gently at Freckle's arm to lead him down to the bar; Mordecai regarding her with a polite nod and digging further into the last pancake.

The syrup bled through the bottom of the incision with the butter and he sighed, weaving the freed piece through the slow, sweet liquid like a paintbrush through paint and barely noticed he didn't cringe when the teaspoon worth of molasses seemed almost pleasant on his tongue.

I haven't got a Plan B.


For the individual known as ilvbrownies who pressed just enough buttons attached to my ego to make me add to this fic. I might add more, but don't know for the moment.