Log:Press Room Floor

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Press Room Floor
Characters  •   Silver Luna Thistle  •  Silvio Bloomquist  •  Landon Marchant  •  Lucas Marchant  •  Esme Reed  •
Location  •  Havasu Herald - Press Rooms
Date  •  1994-04-16
Summary  •  Some of the school Newsies go to see Silvio about a special interest piece. Looking for help and insight into real journalism.

It's just another day at the Herald. Later in the afternoon, but we all know some people get to work late and so work late. As long as deadlines are met, right? It isn't too long after three in the afternoon when the door opens and in walks Silver. This isn't her first time at the Herald. The newsie kids sometimes came here to meet with their 'Mentor'. But it wasn't super common really.

Over one shoulder was her messenger bag and around her neck her camera. Silver looked around the place, waving to other writes who smiled and nodded at her with a shy smile. Had they moved Silvio again? She weaved among cubicles, searching out the advice columnist.


Indeed they had moved Silvio again, no longer was he in the bullpen typing away with the others. Now he's down in the mailroom, but it's his own office. In the mailroom is the hustle and bustle of packages going out coming in. Recordings, requests, documentation for articles, so on so forth. Silvio though has one of the manager offices for the mailroom his own office, how uplifting. It's poorly lit, no windows, and the constant noise of incoming and outgoing couriers haunts him.

The newsies from the school paper have a hard time finding him, it's not until they ask some of the more 'kid friendly' staff that they are directed to the mailroom and Silvio at a typewriter plunking away at the keys. No expense spared it would seem.


Lucas follows Esme in, Landon with him and sees Silvio at a typewriter, "You're using ClarisWords 1.0 Really? Very analog. Keeping the classics alive." The twins have been completely run down over the last month or so, but thankfully a lot of long nights poured into schoolwork still meant they were hitting their deadlines. Morrison gave them a ride to the paper for the meeting in keeping with their agreed upon guidelines to get their situation in order. duffelbag slung across his body his fancy ass wades in exhausted, but the editing team is present! See? Responsible until... well... let's just hope this isn't mono.


Ever since the twins agreed to their elder brother, Morrison's, new rules, they are rarely seen without the Lester around. Sure, he leaves once he drops them off at school, but he's right there to pick them up afterwards. It's for their own good. Either way, with his sunglasses on and some sort of time frame to which they ought to finish things here, less keep Morrison waiting for them, there's a look of annoyance on Landon's features when some of the far more important and busier newsfolk give them the run-around. Eventually, some guy who works for the mailroom, and who was headed that way anyway, gives them the info they need.

On entering the cozy room, he's about to lower his sunglasses, but when the annoying light within the room shines in his eyes, he slips them back on. "Nice little place you got here. Like it?" He then nods over in Silver's direction, "Silver." There's this look that he gives her, but it's veiled behind his shades. Lucas apparently said something!


Esme is wearing sunglasses in the building like a goddamn primadonna in her black and white plaid schoolgirl skirt, knee socks in black, complete with chunky yellow dress shoes and a slightly cropped white tee with a sunflower on it. And a choker with dangle accessory, of course, because that's how girls roll for style in 1994. Her handbag she has a notebook and mail stuffed into is designer decorative and probably for women with money more grown up than she is, and her hair is curled into tousle as such, but that's just Esme... hippie family, matching demeanor, but pretty princess saves for the handbags on the sly.

As she comes in with the others and goes to dig in her bag, she drably makes wondering of Silvio wih a pop of glasses down her nose to look over, curious and good-natured, if not quite... sprightly as she usually is (par lately, gosh, graduation stresses or something), "My worst troll mail this week asked me the best way to remove jizz stains. Tempted to just answer it in the name of teenage boys everywhere. What's troll mail looking like in the adult world, this week?"


"Dude...is that a typewriter?" Asks Silver after a quick knock and stepping inside. She looks at the machine and then back at him with an almost apologetic smile. "Dude..." She shakes her head as she moves to perch tiredly, with a little sigh, on the edge of his desk. Looking around the room skeptically. "They moved you. Again." The light does -nothing- for her complexion which is washed out and pale. She meets Landon's gaze and her head tilts ever so slightly in puzzlement at that look. One brow quirking as she crosses her arms.


In come the kids and Silvio looks up with a squint of his bleary eyes and does the classic brrrrrrng! as he slides the typeslide back to the other side and leans back in his chair putting on a forced grin for the newsies. "Hey guys... Yeah it's a typewriter, listen sometimes you have to go to the classics and you know save some departmental money." he says a bit quieter at that last bit as he leans back forward, forearms on the desk top as he gives them a considering look with all the sunglasses and pale looks. "You guys have a football game or something last night, stay out?" he asks with no sense of time or school schedules only to be diverted by Esme, "Tell them to use bleach." and then adds, "I got this letter here." he pulls out a letter that is written with newspaper clippings like a serial killer or something. He holds it out for them to take and pass around. It reads

How do I get a kiss like Lady and the Tramp on the first date. Then how do I take her back to my place like Prince Eric and Ariel. When we finish how do I pull it off like Simba and Nala."

Silvio waits for them to read it for a few moments before saying, "Someones watching way to much disney movies."


Lucas seems pleased enough throwing that technical grenade into the room. Still Tired or not there's a smile for their cohorts, "Sil. Esme." His eyebrow arches, attention going back to Silvio slowly, "Wow sounds like someone just can't wait to be king. Tell them their problems stem from comparing thir love life to a G rated endevor. That's about as useful as using a spatula in lieu of an abacus for math." There's always energy for salt.


"Can't really say if that's troll mail or someone really desperate and embarrassed after having what was probably an OK time." Landon goes on to say regarding the kinds of letters Esme is forced to answer for their own advice column. Setting his bookbag down beside Silvio's desk, he leans against it, running his fingers through his hair to push his long bangs out of his eyes. "That question though... Are you sure you're not taking letters from Esme's mail bag?"

It must've been a while since they last saw Mr. Bloomquist! Since the kids have been like this for, oh, about a month? Around? Maybe. "We just have deadlines we gotta meet." A pause, before adding, "Which is hard to do when everyone's afraid of a gang harassing some of the students in town." Is that a little news tidbit?


Esme goes to pull an empty chair straight from a cubicle and decides if someone is at lunch or break, they can have it when they come back, her shoes are kind of hurting her feet. But those are the breaks when it comes to style, you just mitigate where you can. After settling in the roller chair in the group next to where Silvio's chair is, she ponders the letter he's got for comparison and tilts her head a bit, "... I could probably wit an answer to that one to be cute. But bleach, mrm! I'll keep it in mind."

After settling, Esme finally pushes the sunglasses up off of her eyes and onto her head when her legs cross, briefly rubbing at the corner of one of them. And whatever she pulls in a breath to say kind of ebbs when Landon brings up the gang bit. Quickly, her unshielded eyes go to see what Silvio has to say about it or assumes based on town rumor mill come the adult side of things.


Silver smirks as the paper passes through her hands and maybe snorts a bit too. "Goodness," She says as she passes it alone with a shake of her head. "No party. Just, you know, vampires," She states it so very plainly and with a little smile. "Kidnapping, murdering, terrorizing vampires." A little nod and she looks over at her friends with a quirk of her lips. Watching thier expressions more than Silvio's at her blaise declaration. Thistles, right?


"The correct answer is not to print it or..." Silvio pulls out a copy of the next series of advice column. Knowing they will all try and spoil his run before it actually hits the press he tears off the last question he answers to hand over. It reads: To the Disney fan with dating advice.... Take her to those movies.

"There's a gang in town hassling students, is it one of those kids doing -the drugs-?" he asks with all the self awareness of an advice columnist who probably hasn't done drugs... Well it's the 90s, so he hasn't done the hip fangled drugs. Then the claim of vampires comes and he goes 'ooooo' before nodding understandingly, "They call them... Gothics. They wear the leather pants, I've seen them at the clubs. They're hassling you, really?" he seems to think they're not very scary.


Lucas looks at Landon's veild 'commentery' but seems neither put off or apt to draw attention there. Silver leads the discussion and the twins start breaking it down into the most mundane of its componants taking turns finishing a sentance or a thought. "We don't think it's the goth community so much as..." His eyes stay on their student advisor as Landon plays mad libs with thier conjoined monologue. "Recently they've been pushing...and have been lurking to do deals in the cemetery, and..."


When Silver utters the word vampire, Landon has to blink. That was crazy talk... Though it's the second time that it's been mentioned, really, and by another Thistle to boot. There's this wary look given to Silvio now, before his dark eyes shift to Lucas, who then begins talking.

As the newsies (and most people) already know, the twins sometimes have a knack for being on the same page and on the same mental wavelength that they finish each other sentences. Regarding the goth community, Landon utters, "...a predatory motorcycle gang or something of that nature." He then continues to add to what his brother says. What have they been pushing? "...drugs, or some sore of hallucinogen, maybe in a bottle of wine..." He then adds, "hosting raves in the dessert." A pause, "And ambushing teenagers." Like themselves!


"Yeah. You know how it is at first, once people start talking around school, it's hard to suss out what's fact and fiction, especially when parties and substances are involved. This one is real talk, though. And you know, with us being a spring break destination, and us having recent missing persons, it's getting a little... easy to think maybe our little town would be logical place for a gang of drug-pushing bikers with bad intentions to set up." Esme comments in a more rational kind of way than the Thistle did, but all the same, she can paint it all the colors she wants-- she looks a little disturbed, recrossing her legs at opposite side.

After looking at their immediate surroundings for other adults, she wonders in a lower voice, "Anything around the bullpens that's of interest or related, maybe?"


"The gang in question has a name. The Painkillers," Silver supplies as she turns to look back at Silvio. "They went so far as to harass Hector and Cash Freeland at the cemetary. Came after them with chains," Her eyes flick towards Lucas and then back to Silvio. "Buuuuut...so far this gang is -really- good at covering their tracks..." And she wrinkles her nose.


Skepticism is paramount, it seems the Bloomquist has no trouble believing there's someone harassing the kids but he folds his forearms over one another and gives them the 'come ooooooooooooooon' look. "A biker gang, in a cemetary. You've seen them or you've just heard about this, I can believe you guys had a little something slipped into your party punch but you know when I was a student that was good times." he says like it'll all blow over and they should be enjoying it, hangover aside. "Come on, why don't you guys walk me through your current run for this month. If the biker story is real you'll have something in the paper to convince me, right?"


Lucas stands stoicly and says, "With all due respect, sir, it's a fantastic public awareness piece that's also going to sit great in our student portfolio in regards to peer interest, adn helping other students, especially the Freshmen class, be able to identify and also know how to stay safe so they can focuson things healthy teens should. Like grades and sports adn stuff." he pauses and looks to Landon, "I'm going to let MOrrison know we're gonna be a few minutes and let him know he can head in if he wants." His hand finds SIlver's shoulder with a small squeeze in tat We're wearing him down! gesture. Go team.


With Esme mentioning his missing person's thing, Landon's eyes flicker in her direction, then Lucas, then Silver before slowly returning to Silvio. "The bikers may have kidnapped someone." As of now, there's at least one missing person's case that's been reported! "Don't really have anything to prove that they did. Or whether they'll do it again." There's something else on his mind, but he refrains to say anything more. Instead, he nods over at Lucas, "Alright. Don't mean to keep him waiting too long." Usually, the boys used to go everywhere without a bodygu-- chaperone, but they've got one now.


Ever ready to impress with something, Esme touches on her article piece for advice because it seems relevant as a segue, "I think I'm going with a piece on peer pressure and substances at social gatherings, someone did at least send in a legitimate concern. That and how to meet someone's parents for the first time, but that one, pfft. Easy fodder." After pulling the sunglasses from her head, she knocks a hand back through her hair, "Getting something slipped in the drink seems to be a thing lately, I know firsthand." Okay, one of them will fess up, it's not like she's going to get anything at home about drinking and drug use except the 'exploration safety' talk given who her parents are.

Esme replaces the sunglasses, works her tongue against a canine, then looks at Lucas' exit, then Landon and Silver in turns while explaining, "The main problem about this rash of slip-in drugs we're pretty sure is biker specific is the craving for more. Less like a good time, more like setting us up to have a good jonesing and... it might make us kids quite culpable to disappearances in the future ourselves, if this keeps up. Which is why we're kind of poking with you to see how much reporter bee in a bonnet is a good idea. I mean, sure, that sounds like paranoia, but I also know what drugs are good time drugs, and this um. Wasn't."

Esme knits her brows and looks aside with drop of her lashes, poking at one of her fingernails where there's chipped pink polish that seems to be bothering her suddenly, "Might be some old students kicking around with them. Already graduated... might be safer sources. Maybe we should look through old year books and see if any faces jog our memory..." Another look at the students, suddenly, with that tidbit, then she wonders, "Can you find data in the paper here on the number of persons missing here over the past oh... I don't know. Ten years or so? And do you remember when you started seeing the uh. Bikers or Gothics at the club?" Another pause, "If we can't prove they're directly dangerous, we should set suspicion and trend precedent as a story, right?"


Silver lets her head moves to rest on one shoulder as she props that arm on the desk. Giving Silvio an amused smile as she does. "There's a gang that is passing around spiked booze to teens and possibly others. As Lucas said, raising awareness is the game. And hopefully to encourage my aunt to do something more than have a nice chit chat with them...you didn't have Jade climb in -your- bedroom window white as a sheet and scared out of his mind." She pauses and considers a moment. "Also figured you might know something about disappearances in the past? Cause seemed to me, when I talked to Aunt Nancy, that this group has been around awhile..." Juicy tidbit dropped.


Silvio listens to each of them in turn and then pushes up from his chair with a creak of it edging back into place, both of his hands on the edge of his desk while watching them. "I can look into this but you need to remembers the tenants of a good journalist... Seek the Truth and Report It. Minimize the harm to the innocent involved in the story. Serve the Public Good." there's a pitch to his voice like he's reciting the holy verses of newsdom there and he raps the desk with his knuckles, "And I'll be damned if I don't help you guys make the best story of your highschool papers history." apparently believing in vampires or drug peddling biker games is to far, but helping kids do 'real journalism' is a-okay. Small victories people, small victories. "Tell me what questions and angles you need help with and I'll look into it and figure out some work arounds for you."


"For one," Landon says, pushing off from where he was leaning against Silvio's desk to take a few steps around the room, "Like the others brought up. Missing persons. Even possible murders around time in the past several years? Hope that's not too much to ask." He then decides to bring up, "My cousin's fiance went missing recently." He doesn't dare look at either Esme or Silver when he says this. They know the one. "The police are currently investigating, but it would be a good idea if there was a pattern of sorts." Though hearing that Silver had already spoken to her aunt, he has to ask, "So they are looking into the Painkillers?" There's some hope in his dark eyes that this will soon be over.


Esme points to Landon's words and pushes up into a stand to roll the chair she borrowed back to the cubicle she borrowed it from, then pulls a note pad from her desk. She jots down

-- Missing persons/runaways past 10+ (?) years in news reports.

--Names of any teenage runaways within 5 yrs (?)

Then she adds on with jotting before ripping it to place like a memo on Silvio's desk, things mentioned and a couple detail tidbits that might help them dig in the future.

-- Reports of violence/disturbances from biker gang/arrests, etc-- Names?

"Start like this?"


Silver shoots Landon and Esme a smile, only secretly triumphant, at Silvio's agreement to help. Straightening she turns back to beam at the columnist. "Awesome! Mysterious disappearances. Especially of teens around our age and maybe early twenties?" She pauses to consider. "I...couldn't tell you Fran's age. Twenties." And she shrugs. "And anything that mentions the Painkillers." She is slipping off his desk when Landon makes mention of that fiance and she cringes slightly. The smile falters and she moves to take her sunglasses back out. There's still sun outside. "Yeah, well...she said she was going to go out and have a talk with them. But she's a busy woman so don't know what, if anything, came of it."


Silvio picks up the list, jots down a few more things with a pencil and puts it in his shirt pocket. "I'll get back to you in a couple days, until then... Hit the streets, talk to people, every little detail matters." a pause and then in a brief moment of potentially helpful advice, "You should stop by the gas stations, see where the biker gang fills up. If it's in town, what time of night, if they come inside or which direction they come from. As for disappearances, you should get your old year books from the school archives so I can cross reference them against people of interest in old issues of the newspaper." then for the finale, "And always remember K.I.S.S.. Keep it Simple Stupid, people really... Do not have good reading comprehension, they never take my advice." he laments at the end there.


When Silvio tells them to stop by the gas station as such, Landon looks back over towards the door wondering if Morrison will even allow for the twins to do that! It would make him sound like a coward to say that they can't do this or that, so he just slowly nods. "Thanks for the advice, Mr. Bloomquist. Due to certain obligations, we're running on limited time, but I think we'll be able to outsource a few things if we can't tackle them ourselves." Who he's really talking about is both himself and Lucas really. That's all he can speak up for. "We definitely should broaden our search to neighboring cities and towns as well." But the internet still sucks, so that's a lot of phone calls to make or newspapers to look through. As he writes down notes of his own, "I thought some of them looked familiar. Not sure though." He's talking about the Painkiller.


"We should look through yearbooks at the pictures and see what happens when we look through the people a few grades above us. Maybe yearbooks from other schools too nearby, good idea. And no, I'm not just saying that to get a little bit of a road trip in with Landon to the next town. Mostly." Esme suggests to the pair before packing up with a smile of thanks at Silvio, "Thanks El Capitan."

When they've picked way through the building, she asks for a ride to work instead of walking, even though it probably isn't that far from the news office. And after a more candid look between the other students, they probably know exactly why she's asking.


Silver nods her head and says, "I can scan the yearbooks. See what I can't find in the mortuary records." There's some perks to being a Thistle after all. She settles her shades in place and then waves at Silvio. Before leaving she moves in to give Esme an awkward friendly hug, but Landon gets the more solid friend hug. Then she is out the door.