Reinald Wong, & Leonard Christian-Walker( collaboration with @Shoryu Magami )
Somewhere in Central Paris, France_
♫ Final Fantasy XV OST - Safe Haven
Reinald could only shrug in response to Leonard's last line - the American boy didn't even give him a chance to say anything at all in between all his ramblings - but he pulled out the pamphlet from his pocket and opened up the map inside. "Most of the tourist attraction sites are further downtown... And it seems like there's a train station within walking distance from here, so we can catch a train together and look around there." He folded the map into half, then showed it to Leonard. "Maybe here? The Luxembourg Palace. According to the guide, it has quite an impressive collection of Gothic art and architecture."
While he had initially been a little unsure of how to take Rein's shrug to the comment about staring, the following response made it clear he wanted to travel with him. In all honesty, Leonard had never heard of Luxembourg Palace in any detail beyond randomly hearing its name brought up. His own pamphlet, which he had only used to a very small extent since arriving here, was the only real source of information he had been given about it in his life. Not that he had even read the thing in any detail, since there was far too many things on his mind currently -- the reason he was here in the first place being one of the main ones. With that said, Rein's suggestion sounded interesting, particularly because Leonard had always been fascinated in art.
"Ahrite, cool..." Leonard said in agreement, "Let's go, huh?" he continued with a slight tilt of his head signalling in the direction that the map was showing the station located at. The straightforward part of him wanted to turn around and lead the way, but the part of him that had literally had people try to stab him in the back on more than one occasion made him reserved to do so.
Reinald nodded in reply to Leonard's direction, but rather than taking the lead he chose to fall in next to the American, keeping a slight distance apart but not obvious enough to make it seem as if he didn't like walking with him. He wasn't stupid to go off in front of this guy and get himself back-stabbed without warning, not when the counterpart had some sort of weapon on him. Call him paranoid, but he found it hard to relax around Leonard, not after all that creepy, intense staring contest on top of the bit of sheath poking out from under his clothes. Everything about this American just made Reinald feel difficult to get along with him beyond the current excuse of touring around Paris for a bit (and he was starting to regret calling out to this dude just now).
Leonard turned around roughly at the same time Rein was about to pass by him, making sure not to end up behind him when they started walking. It would have been hypocritical to be cautious enough not to take the lead yet then expect this stranger to move in front of him, especially given how only one of them was armed to the best of his knowledge, and he had always made an active point in his life of not expecting anything from others than he did not expect from himself; in fact, he had openly challenged people to find evidence otherwise.
As they started heading down the street, Leonard could not help but find himself contemplating about the events that were fast approaching -- a chance to correct a cruel hand that had been dealt in his little world. He was still largely unsure about whether or not he wanted to take the escort or just make his own way to the estate, but if he decided on the latter then he would need to part ways with Rein a lot sooner to ensure no problems came up.
The crowd thickened as they were approaching closer to the train station marked with a 'RER' signage (which stood for Réseau Express Régional), and Reinald's worry began to shift from the weapon and possible hidden violence in Leonard to the tendency of encountering a pickpocket this time. Even if the Chinese man didn't think he had brought much cash on him, getting anything stolen from the professional thieves who thrived on the stupidity and carelessness of foreigners was still a sour experience for any tourists, especially in the beautiful sight of this imperfect city.
Thankfully, the station had ticket vending machines that came with an English menu, which solved the language barrier issue for Reinald. He turned to Leonard and explained, "The closest station to the Palace is Luxembourg, which is along this RER route." His finger traced the blue line on the map in his pamphlet. "It's between St-Michel--Notre-Dame, and Port-Royal. We can purchase the tickets from the machines since they have English installed in them."
"...Sounds like a plan," Leonard replied after he swallowed another bite of the sandwich he had been periodically munching on, finally finished with it. At this point, he was becoming more conscious of the fact that time was passing and figured it would be a good idea if he got his mobile phone out during the train trip so he would make sure not to lose track of how long he had left. He did have a knack for getting lost in his own world, especially when something started making him daydream - which was easily possible in a romantically beautiful city like this - or was provoking his attention to detail into full gear.
The thought had been going through his mind the whole time that he needed to be on guard for an attack, especially since he was not unfamiliar with the possibility of people trying to get revenge on him by calling for more of their buddies, but he also figured he probably scared those idiots enough to make them not want to mess with him again. Regardless of how many of them they had, unless they could get their hand on a firearm he would be fine, and he was a more difficult target now that Rein's presence meant he was no longer alone -- regardless of whether his Asian companion could protect himself or not. Once they were on the train, it would be significantly more difficult for them to be found anyway.
"Let's do this," Leonard said after only a moment of thinking after his initial reply.
Reinald only responded with a curt nod and turned around, leaving his new companion's side to get his own ticket. Self-services like purchasing the ticket from the vending machines was child's play for the tech-savvy young man - he had no trouble going through the menu options to get what he wanted. A few seconds and a couple of taps later, he stepped away from the machine with the ticket in hand, then walked over to the gantry to wait for Leonard. He took out his own mobile and glanced at the time; there wasn't a need for him to make haste. He began to play a RPG app on his phone as he waited.
Leonard walked over to get a ticket at the same time as Rein, placing out his hand. As he was navigating the menu, his mind was honestly still multitasking -- focused mostly on the events that would transpire later in the day. Was it really possible for his wish to be granted? Leonard was not really the type of person who believed that you had to physically see something to prove that it existed, especially since there were so many mysterious in the world outside of the scope of empirical understanding, and he believed a wise person always kept in mind that anything might be possible in this world -- the height of arrogant delusion was to assume otherwise with absolute certainty. He was not that savvy about science, but he knew from his father that the more people learned the more questions they uncovered instead of answers. Nevertheless, each time he tried to fathom how a single man could actually be able to grant his true desire it just ended up bringing so many other thoughts to the surface of his inquisitive mind -- who the hell was this 'Methuselah of Paris'? Either way, he knew he would find out soon enough.
How much was on his mind meant that Leonard had indeed finished getting his ticket later than Rein, but once he had acquired it he wasted no time walking over to the gantry and signalling that he was ready with a nod. At this point, his mind was too occupied to engage in much conversation.
Reinald didn't seem to be in any mood to talk, either. Though the Chinese tourist could spare enough attention to register and acknowledge Leonard's presence, he was more interested in his own world - or rather, his game - than making much effort to try socializing with his new 'friend'. If his family or relatives were here, they would probably waste no time to nag and reprimand him (to them, his current attitude was considered rude by Asian standard, especially before those fussy elders), but to the introverted young man, he valued his personal space above all else. Once he passed through the gantry, Reinald brisked towards the platform area, all the while still keeping Leonard within his field of vision. A quick glance at the signboards to confirm the correct side of the train they should take, he gave the blond a wave to signal him over.
It was already way past peak hour period, but luckily for the pair they didn't need to wait long as their train pulled into the station a minute later. As Reinald boarded the train, he put on his headphone, filling the awkward silence between the two men with a calming soundtrack piece from the iPod in his jeans pocket. His left hand continued tapping away on his smartphone while the other tucked into his hoodie pocket, fingers wrapped around his wallet and the letter as a subtle precaution against pickpockets.
...And now, they were finally en route to Luxembourg Palace.