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Mitch Laurence [userpic]

Opening my doors to those who seek guidance [Open to any and all]

May 22nd, 2006 (12:53 am)

Mitch whistles as he unfolds the chairs in three perfect lines. This "church" is smaller than his last, but it will do. Pleased with his work, he moves on to the refreshments. He sets out two pitchers of iced tea, a bowl of freshly cut lemon wedges and a few stacks of plastic drinking glasses. He can't afford fancy glasses like the ones he'd drunk bourbon from at Llanfair. He reminds himself that patience is a virtue. There's also a plate of pastries, colorful to the eye, filled with fruit jam.

The tea was homemade. The special ingredient would calm his would-be parishioners. Make them feel at peace. They'd want to come back for that high. High on the message, or so they might believe. Truly addicting tea. He hadn't been as overzealous with the amount of this ingredient, as he had in the past. No, he didn't want someone to catch on... as they had in Llanview so many years ago.

Organ music is playing softly from a portable CD player. He'd chosen an old wooden desk instead of a pulpit. People these days were often scared away by too much religious symbolism. Can the message be spread this way? The 80's were long gone. Days of wearing Ray-Ban sunglasses and a smirk, standing before tons of followers. They bought every word he preached and lavished him with money and expensive gifts.

Low key is the way to go, for now. He'll reel them in. They will heed the message. The Church of
Lazarus is now open for all who seek spiritual guidance... and a mighty tasty glass of iced tea.


Posted by: Ryan Jacks (theprivate_ryan)
Posted at: May 22nd, 2006 06:17 am (UTC)
ryan wall

*She walked in, skittish and looking around. Her flowered sundress and low heels were simple, but designer label. The peach sweater in her hands and the Prada bag were also of the same style. She stayed in the back of the room, nervously trying to figure out if she should run now, or stick it out to be polite. Her dark green eyes blinked as she took off her tortoise shell sunglasses.*

Um...am I in the right place?

Posted by: Mitch Laurence (heedmitch)
Posted at: May 23rd, 2006 01:25 am (UTC)

Mitch had been straightening a pile of pamphlets on his desk when he heard the front door open. He turned slowly. You never knew who might show up. Hopefully not someone from his past. He eyed the attractive young woman and smiled. There was something about her that seemed familiar. However, he did not want to presume anything, as he was still unsure of her identity.

"May I help you, miss?" He started to walk toward her, keeping a comfortable distance as to not scare her away. "Are you here for guidance?"

Posted by: Ryan Jacks (theprivate_ryan)
Posted at: May 23rd, 2006 01:33 am (UTC)
bw lip

*She started, jumping slightly. She took a breath and looked at the man, then looked around him to see if anyone else was there.* Well...no. Not totally. I just came to check it out, I guess. My name's Ryan. Jacks. Ryan Jacks.

*She realized she was rambling, and abruptly closed her mouth, the tiniest scowl on her face.*

Posted by: Mitch Laurence (heedmitch)
Posted at: May 23rd, 2006 03:29 am (UTC)

She seemed a bit jumpy. "My apologies if I've startled you." He smiled and listened intently.

"Miss Jacks?" He grinned. "Are you here to, how did you put it... see what the Preacher Man is selling?"

Posted by: Ryan Jacks (theprivate_ryan)
Posted at: May 23rd, 2006 04:18 am (UTC)
on the steps

*When in doubt, and when she was most uncomfortable, she imagined him behind her. And then she lifted her chin and gave the man a look up and down.*

Well, I don't see any booths selling custom bibles or vials of holy water. You get points for that.

*Ryan tipped her head sideways, and shrugged.*

Well, Preacher? This doesn't look like the usual bible thumping roadshow. Are you really here to save souls? *leans forwards with a smile* Or is your soul the one that needs saving?

Posted by: Mitch Laurence (heedmitch)
Posted at: May 25th, 2006 09:16 pm (UTC)

"This is not a business and again, I'm not trying to sell you anything. I truly hope you believe me."

Mitch eyed the main room, as to reassure her that this wasn't like other uptight religious institutions. When he returned his gaze to Ryan he smiled.

"I'm here to guide lost souls, to assist in any way I can." He paused, arms now
outstretched and hands motioning upward. "I'm not perfect, but he has chosen me to deliver the message. And yes, perhaps my soul will be saved in the process. We can all help each other, child..."

Posted by: Ryan Jacks (theprivate_ryan)
Posted at: May 25th, 2006 09:52 pm (UTC)

I am not a child.

*It was said with a smile, but it was a smile that only Frankie, and maybe Lexi, would recognize as anything but. But the man did seem sincere, and there was something about him that was...maybe...lonely. And that was a feeling that Ryan could respond to.*

Look...I'm sorry. I've just been through an awful lot, lately, and I'm not real good with new people. All in all, I'm not really what you would call holy or sweet or anything like that. But, I would like to hear what you have to say, as long as you aren't boring. If I fall asleep, all bets are off.

Posted by: Mitch Laurence (heedmitch)
Posted at: May 29th, 2006 09:49 pm (UTC)

The smile left Mitch's face. His ways of addressing people weren't current and seemed to offend some. "I wasn't looking down on you or assuming anything." He paused for a moment, considering his words carefully. "I can see that you aren't a child. It's just a term I use, for those considerably younger than myself."

He listened to her intently, nodding his head. "You don't need to be sweet or holy to find peace. I don't expect you to trust me right off the bat. However, if you'd like to talk about your problems... I will listen."
He grinned. "And I promise to keep the sermons short."

Mitch looked past her, at the refreshments table. "Could I interest you in a glass of iced tea or a pastry?"

Posted by: Ryan Jacks (theprivate_ryan)
Posted at: May 29th, 2006 11:29 pm (UTC)

No pastry. A girl has to watch her figure. But the iced tea sounds good. Thank you.

*She turned and walked over to the table, then gave him a sideways glance from under her lashes.*

I went to parochial schools. Nuns, priests. I always felt like I should have the priests confess to me first, when I went in the booth. But I like the stories, you know, the Bible stories. If you think about it as real people, and all this stuff happening to them, then it's more interesting.

Posted by: Mitch Laurence (heedmitch)
Posted at: May 30th, 2006 12:26 am (UTC)

He eyed her curiously. "I don't think you need to worry about your figure, Miss Jacks..." With a smile, he motioned toward the table. "...but enjoy the tea. It's quite delicious, if I do say so myself."

He followed her to the table, poured a glass of iced tea, and garnished it with a lemon slice. "You have a point there." Mitch handed the glass to Ryan, with a smile. "I often find it helpful to share my experiences. There's no formal confessional here. I hope you'll find this setting to be more relaxed than other churches."

His head turned upon hearing the door open. Another visitor. "Would you excuse me for a moment, Miss Jacks? Feel free to have a seat and help yourself to more tea whenever you like."

He hoped to learn more about the young woman later, but now it was time to welcome the man who had entered the church.

Posted by: Ryan Jacks (theprivate_ryan)
Posted at: May 30th, 2006 03:47 am (UTC)
pretend fine

*She drank the tea. It actually was really, really good. She watched him talk to people. He seemed really nice, actually. The more she drank, the more tired she felt. She was uncomfortable, but didn't want to be rude. So she found a quiet corner and wrote a note on a pad in her dayplanner, then she slipped it in an envelope with a check for a thousand dollars.*

Sorry, I had to go. Here's my business card and something towards the offering plate. Don't worry about it, I can afford it, and it looks like maybe your church can use it. If you guys need something, like money for a food drive or something good like that, call me. Or you could just call me to talk. I'd really like that.

Thanks for being nice. I don't meet many nice people anymore. Be cool, preacher man.

Ryan C. Jacks

*She slipped her business card from Gold Coast Studios into the envelope with the check and the note, and walked around to where his bible was, just putting it inside the cover so a bit stuck out, then she slipped out the door.*

Posted by: Hermes (ex_msg_ina_b653)
Posted at: May 24th, 2006 11:06 am (UTC)

Hermes inspected the area carefully. That was, after all, what one did when about to step into a rivals domain... And God? Him, It, Blah-before-Blah-Whatever? Was likely the biggest rival a Greek could have...outside his own Pantheon. Once he was assured that Gaberial, or Judas, or whoever did the Annoying-One's-business wasn't hanging around, ready to jump out and scream about rules and regulations or so such like that- He entered The Church of Lazarus.

Huh...didn't tingle like he thought it would.


Posted by: Mitch Laurence (heedmitch)
Posted at: June 7th, 2006 08:44 pm (UTC)

Mitch approached and smiled widely. "Well hello. Welcome to the Church of Lazarus." He extended a hand. "Mitch Laurence. Pleasure to meet you, Mr...?"

He paused, noting another man had entered. Hoping to multi-task he spoke to the one in front of him. "Please... help yourself to some refreshments." He gestured toward the table. "Perhaps we can chat after you quench your thirst with a glass of iced tea?" With that, Mitch excused himself to greet the other man.

Posted by: Kitt (ki2k)
Posted at: May 27th, 2006 04:27 am (UTC)
Digital Boy - Poppy!Mun

He slipped in, taking a seat unobtrusively in the back, scanning the surroundings curiously.

He couldn't say what might have drawn him here. He wasn't seeking God, or salvation. He may have been seeking acceptance - if not from God, then perhaps from one of his Messengers.

Even so, he was feeling more than a healthy amount of skepticism, and quite possibly suspicion as to his own motivations.

Posted by: Mitch Laurence (heedmitch)
Posted at: June 2nd, 2006 08:40 pm (UTC)

As Mitch waited for the man near the front door to answer, he spotted another seated in the back row of chairs. He hadn't even noticed the man enter the church!

He tried to make eye contact with the other man, smiled and nodded. As soon as the current introductions were made, Mitch would offer both men refreshments and perhaps start a group conversation.

Posted by: Kitt (ki2k)
Posted at: June 2nd, 2006 09:11 pm (UTC)
Digital Boy - Poppy!Mun

A hint of a smile and a nod in return, feeling distinctly out of place. He was beginning to think that perhaps this wasn't the best of ideas, despite some other conversations he'd been having.

Posted by: Mitch Laurence (heedmitch)
Posted at: June 7th, 2006 08:46 pm (UTC)

The whole starting a new congregation thing was off to a rocky start. Mitch had to have hope though... especially if he wanted to pay the rent on this place.

He smiled and headed over to the young man. "Good afternoon. Glad you could stop by... I'm Mitch." He extended a hand, being as cheerful as possible. "How can I be of assistance?"

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