This story is part of "Project 1947", which is part of the Basilicus project.

Collaborative: This story is open to any new writers with characters alive during the year 1947 and have access to Washington D.C.. Note that writers can only write for characters they create. Use the talk page if you have questions or suggestions.

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Pearl leaned her body up against the piano slowly, tilting her head back with a smile as the man behind the keys went on. "Rumors are flying, and I'm not denying.." She pushed herself away as she went on, clicking those black pumps across the stage carefully. "That people are sure I'm falling in love with you." Her left hand lifted to brush three red gloved finger tips across another mans face, her body bending down toward the crowd very slightly. " 'Cause for a change, darling, all the rumors are true." She gave him a soft smack before pulling back up, taking a few quick strides away. The older man called out after her and raised his drink, himself and a few friends exchanging grins. Pearl let a little laughter slip in-between lines, tossing a tight blond curl away from her face as she did so. Two off the shoulder straps bounced as she moved away, the sleek black dress fitting all the way down to just under both knees. As music drifted, so did the sweet, sultry voice. Pearl looked out over the faces with a smile, giving a little flick of her thin wrist every so often, side by side with a shake of her narrow hips. They always liked this song, she thought, though Pearl didn't see her voice even close to as alluring as Betty Rhodes. However, they crowd didn't seem to mind, or even notice.

Once the music had grown calm and the hour late, Pearl made her way down the small stage, taking the first glass of water handed her way, her head giving a nod in silent thanks. The club was of a decent size, and had paid her well. Not just to dance and sing, but to stick around for an hour after and chat with the customers. Pearl didn't mind it one little bit, in all honesty. This was not work, this was conversing. To think, that I am paid for all of this! The location was also very well known in the city for having energetic jazz acts and good drink.

Not that Pearl Walker was a drinker though.

She sat herself at one of the small round tables, crossing one ankle over it's pair. Soon enough, others had taken the seats around her, even pulled up a few others as the questions flooded her ears. She took it slowly, one at a time, until the crowd became a bit more thin, though the table she sat at stayed busy. Only then did she let her gaze wander over the area, always with that soft, calm smile.


Tough night. That bastard was at it again and he�d bypassed yet another goddamned case because of his drunken tangent. He was 28 years old, ain�t it too late in life to be dealing with his parents?

This was a good joint. Dark. Smoky. Pretty girl on the stage. Who is that anyway? He wish he�d known about this place earlier. Good eye candy. Good drinks.

Except for this one, tasted like burnt wood. Flagging down a cocktail waitress, Lee Warden ordered another brand of bourbon. Not the well, whatever you do. After a sip or three he couldn�t stop looking at her. Maybe it was her legs, could be her smile. Maybe she just seemed too innocent for the damned place.

Tipping his charcoal fedora up slightly and loosing his jacket coat, he enjoyed the new bourbon much better. Keeping his eyes steady, he cracked his neck. What the hell? Maybe a little conversation wouldn�t hurt. The crowd around her seemed to be disappearing anyway.

He sauntered over as casually as he could and said from behind a cigarette, �If you want to be alone, just say the word.�

--Laveaux 23:14, 12 December 2005 (CST)

Alone? Pearl tilted her head up and over at the new face, flashing a bright grin. She was never alone, and had found after some time that the busy air full of drunk voices that you could often find in a place such as this was much more calming than silence anyway. "Of course not." One hand lifted from her lap to flick five fingers in the direction of a chair at her side, shifting her body just after. Both shoulder blades pressed against the wooden chair back before she went on, blinking slowly. One dark blue eye beside it's vivid green pair. "Have a seat, please."

She always felt larger than life on stage, though now as she sat so neat at that round table, she couldn't help but feel small. Even the other ladies around her seemed taller, longer limbs so full of grace. Pearl was nothing but a pale, seated doll. Her hair was also a bit longer than all the others, full of tight and fair curls all held back in a rather perfect mess.

Teeth bit down on the thick flesh of her bottom lip as she waited on the other to speak, to claim his place at the table before another did. A man passed on her left, giving a nod and a pause to voice how much he enjoyed the show. A little laughter drifted out his way before she gave a nod herself, speaking quietly in thanks.

Once more, she shifted her face back to the man standing over her. A smile, always a smile with Pearl. Warm and welcoming.


Finally. A friendly face. A pretty face. Maybe it was an act, but it didn't matter. Right now Lee Warden needed bourbon and a sweet smile across the table from him. It was a tough day and the week wasn't getting easier, not with the bills coming in and the phone being quiet.

Worry perhaps stretched his face a bit, but he immediately put it aside. Now was the time for drinking. Now was the time to meet a new girl. Not worry about the world. And the people in it.

"Thanks," he said with a smile and sat before anyone could take the seat. Leaning forward he enjoyed a drag and noticing her lack of cigarette offered one. An acceptance or rejection would yeild the same response: an easy lean back and poised relaxation.

"You're quite the talent. What brings you to the District? A dame like you should be headlining on Broadway."

--Laveaux 23:14, 12 December 2005 (CST)

"Thank you." She had to laugh at that last comment, a gentle and easy flow before giving a glance down into her lap as she spoke again. "All in good time, I'm sure." Her head shook some at the cigarette, both pale, neat brows narrow for a quick moment. Pearl didn't smoke, though she didn't have any real reason for this. She assumed spending so much time in clubs such as this very one worked on her poor little lungs enough without more help from her. Her gaze lifted back to his own as she went on, "Work." Work brought her to many a District, though she had half a mind to call DC home these days. It did seem that she spent more time here than most other places. "I play around here often enough." One small, gloved hand reached out to him then, smooth palm down. "Morning Glory, " Pearl tossed in a sly grin with that, and even a little scrunch of her nose. "It's my pleasure."

Morning Glory. That's what most people knew her by these days. Very few still called her Pearl, even if they had been aware that it was her real name -- Glory had just grown to fit so well. Though she wasn't exactly the same person on stage as she was off. The dress she wore tonight, for one. It was black. Pearl never wore black in her day to day life. It was all white and pale pink, a light yellow or cream. However the little dress did fit her well, the contast against her fair skin was very nearly pleasing.

She tilted her head to the right slightly, letting the stray curls brush her flushed cheek.


Without realizing it, Lee Warden smiled. It was like the dame washed away all the petty problems he was having and replaced it with a warm glow. The sort of breath a google-eyed fan takes before meeting a Hollywood starlette. She was one of those. No matter where she looked, part of her face fell into shadows in a display of delicate cenema.

Smiling may have shown weakness or cracked his otherwise brooding facade, so he discretely did away with it. Taking her fingers with gentlemanly flavor, he gripped ever-slightly and then let them go.

"Warden. Lee Warden, it is a pleasure to meet you Miss . . . Glory. Out of curiosity do you have a Christian name? Or am I left to believe that your mother, bless her heart, took her child in her arms and chose the name 'Morning' out of a hat?"

It was an innocent jest, but like most conversations, Lee likely came across as either too blunt or abrasive.

--Laveaux 23:14, 12 December 2005 (CST)

She didn't find him very blunt or abrasive, it was a simple question that Pearl took for what it was worth. The hand moved back to rest in her lap with it's pair, her chin tilting up a bit as she spoke. "Pearl Walker." Christian or not, that was the name her Mother had seen fit. It worked just as well as Morning Glory, she supposed. He could call her what he liked, she didn't mind either way.

She didn't often give people she spoke with after shows her real name, only because if they wanted to gossip on her act, Morning Glory was the name others would know -- if any.

"What brings you here, Lee?" Both lips parted for a pause, her body leaning in toward his own slightly as she smiled. "If I may."


Bourbon settled upon Lee Warden's consciousness so his normal reclusive self was being squashed by his internal inquisitive one. Taking another shot he leaned forward and said, "Of course you may. I am here to remove the day I had.

"And perhaps stumble upon some work in the meantime."

He glanced around then to see if anyone was listening. The bar seemed to be in its own world letting the two talk alone temperarily . . . or at least until someone else got a whiff of this dame and stomped over Lee's precarious platform.

Knowing she would ask what his business was he went ahead and said it, "I'm a Private Investigator. But don't worry, I'm off-duty."

--Laveaux 23:14, 12 December 2005 (CST)

Both eyes lit up a little bit at that. "A PI, how.. alluring." Pearl took a pause before lifting the slim glass of water to her lips, taking a slow drink before bringing it back down to rest on the slick table top. Both shoulders rolled very slowly, letting her head tilt as her face brushed across one narrow shoulder. "I'm not worried, Lee, I don't have very many pretty secrets for those ears of yours." A quick wink came with that just before her gaze shifted across the room, throwing a smile away here and there. After a long moment, her face turned back to match his own.

"Did it work then? The show. Did it remove the troubles of your day?" One leg moved to rest beside it's pair, the other shifting just after to cross back over gently.


Was she teasing? A dame like that could have anyone in the room, why was she talking to Lee? He was burnt out, getting drunk, and exhausted. Maybe this was part of her job. It didn't matter, he just wanted conversation.

"You did a good job at that, my day is a distant memory."

A figure in the bar caught his eye and suddenly law enforcement training took over. He was suspicious. A heavy winter coat on, but he didn't just arrive. The bar was hot enough to boil raddishes and he kept the coat on. A large hat covering his features. Gentlemen tried to take their hats off, especially with all of the ladies about.

His placid face meant he wasn't enjoying himself.

"You know him?" Warden asked with a tilt of his head.

--Laveaux 23:14, 12 December 2005 (CST)

She looked the other man over slowly, giving a soft shake of her head after. "No. Should I?" It wasn't often that Pearl could place a name with a face, even if the figure had been seen by her little eyes before. Her head turned back to look on at Lee, letting her lips press tight for just a moment.

She didn't know the other man, but he looked like he might.

One hand reached out to brush across his knee gently as she spoke up again. "Why do you ask?"


Damn booze was sinking in. His lips were loose. Poor dame, probably made her nervous. Last thing she needs is some jackass pointing out suspicious strangers. Keep the damned stuff to yourself.

"It's nothing. Thought he looked familiar."

Taking another drink he forced a half-smile and while keeping a unobvious eye on the stranger he focused on the woman and the moment he'd decidedly derailed.

Her gesture brought back some confidence. She was focused on him. A brooding, squinty-eyed, smoking, drinker. Must like the ruffians.

It's just an act. It's her job.

"So, Morning Glory. What do you do when you aren't in a club full of men idolozing you?"

--Laveaux 23:14, 12 December 2005 (CST)

"I busy myself with thoughts on what to wear the next time i'm in a club full of men idolozing me." A grin came with that, letting her chin shift down to rest in the palm of her hand as it bent up from the table top. Was she serious? Of course not, but one like herself could hardly take a question such as that seriously. Not even a bit. What did she do? She painted, wrote, danced, and all of the same stuff she did on stage. However, she couldn't say that. That was a bore.

Her body shifted some in the seat as the index finger near her ear moved to catch a wild curl.


Matt stepped up to the mike, the band had been playing most the night, but now it was his turn for the solo. He started playing the clarinet, drifting out a lazy jazzy tune. He was dressed smart, in a suit and tie, all pressed and sharp. Clean shave and slicked back hair.

The club was a nice gig; he had been playing here for a week and had not had the courage yet to talk to the ladies yet. He was still working out his style, and the style of the girls. He had had his eye on the one called Morning Glory, she seemed like a smart girl. Not like the others, she was destined for more then this joint had to offer.

He stopped playing to start singing, �Moonlight becomes you, it goes with your hair,� He crooned over the mike as the band picked up after his solo intro. �You certainly know the right thing to wear� �Moonlight becomes you, I'm thrilled at the sight� �And I could get so romantic tonight�

It was Bing, and everyone liked Bing, Matt liked him a lot, and the dancers started to move out to the floor. He watched to see if Morning Glory was going to dance as well.

Last edited by rentiger1 on Wed Oct 12, 2005 6:53 am; edited 1 time in total


Her gaze shifted sowly as the new voice filled the room, letting her eyes narrow past the smoke and moving forms. A young kid, it seemed. Nice voice though. "Kid's got style." Parted lips tossed the mutter toward Lee, bringing her eyes back to his own for a quick moment. A grin, a quick laugh before her head shook and she lifted the glass for a smooth drink of water.

Legs moved, left crossing over the right now, one foot making a tap that hit right in line with the music that drifted across the room.


�You're all dressed up to go dreaming Now don't tell me I'm wrong And what a night to go dreaming Mind if I tag along�.�

He watched the woman across the room; he caught her eye for a moment. She was not dancing, it was a shame, and she had the legs for it. He caught sight of those legs ash crossed them; they were a sight, long and silky. Alone you may think she was just another doll, but put her next to the other dames in this place, and you knew she was something special just by the way she walked and talked.

�If I say I love you I want you to know It's not just because there's moonlight Although, moonlight becomes you so�

He picked up the clarinet and started to play, the band kicking in for the instrumental part. He played his tune nice and low as he eyed the girl from across the room.


�Style. Yeah.�

Damned kid was stealing his thunder. Lee, obligated, pivoted in his seat to take a look at the singer. Young. But not inexperienced. Those eyes had history. A little weight. Some scars, maybe. Who in this day didn�t have their scars?

His eyes then darted back to the stranger, still suspicious. He hadn�t moved. Must be paranoid. Must be the booze.

Taking another swig polished his supply.

How many was that? Six?

�Can I buy you a drink, Miss Glory?� He asked at last. It was only proper. After all, he�d be needing another.

--Laveaux 23:14, 12 December 2005 (CST)

Pearl shook her head slowly, "No Thank you, Lee." With this three fingers twisted the water glass as it sat off to her side. He must have really had a rough day, hm? He was drinking that booze like it was as sweet as apple juice. Pearl, for one, had never seen it as such. Her lips curled for another grin, damp and full as her teeth found the thick flesh that made up the bottom. This place wasn't that bad, really. Pearl wouldn't mind playing here again. Good people, in any case, seemed hard to find these days. Her body moved around in the seat as her eyes went from Lee and back to the stage not so far away. People watching her wasn't an odd thing. She could feel the eyes like heat when she was singing, dancing, playing. However, she wasn't on stage. The bright lights were not placed on her at the moment. So why did she feel that heat?... And then, her eyes caught that young mans as he continued to play on.

Was he watching her?

After a little pause for thought, she smiled again. And shot him a blue eyed wink.


He was drinking too much and this dame was noticing. He'd already crossed the threshold and there would be no going back. Lee's speech wasn't slurred when he had too many, but he couldn't hold back what was in his head. There was no filter any more.

Her wink solidified it. She wanted the younger, sober one.

He half-turned and cocked his head at the man on stage. Floods of inebriation washing over him, he scowled. Was he jealous over a woman he just met?

Eyes darted back over to the suspicious man.

Not there any more. Even more suspicious.

Then back to Morning Glory, "It was nice meeting you ma'am," he said and with a tilt of his hat he took his scotch with him to find the missing possible threat.

--Laveaux 23:14, 12 December 2005 (CST)

The guy got up and left her. What was that about? He hoped he did not get her in trouble. He knew it was bad for them if they guys walk out on them.

The song ended and they went into some sets of swing to get the joint moving again. They started off with some Count Basie, move on to some Duke Ellington. Something to dance to as well as just listen to.

He kept an eye on Morning, he would have to apologize to her after their set was done.


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