Ragabash Elder Challenge

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She’s thought about it for a couple of days since Joey came to her and told her she was leaving, and that she had recommended her for the spot. She’s still vaguely new to the city, she’s certainly not the highest-ranking member of the Auspice here and…well, she was weird enough with the fact that people called her the Strider Elder. She’s not fuckin’ old, after all. In addition, challenges aren’t something that she can take lightly. Her pack’s totem demands that they pick and choose their battles, and having the wisdom to know when the risk is worth it. Should she lose this, it’s not just her that pays. She has to consider all of this.

But it would be good for the city, and good for her, to get new perspectives. That’s what being a Ragabash was all about, right? Making sure that new perspectives are seen, and no one gets settled into old ways for the sake of them being old. A Devil’s Advocate had to be in place, especially during a time of change in the Sept like this. Her pack chose her for this very reason, and she chose them because she knew she could complete them in that way. If she was a fit there, then she could be a fit here as well. It’s time for her to step up.

And thus, Sarita makes her way into the Sept, seeking out Balance-Without-Fault. She’s dressed simply—black tank top, jeans, cowboy boots and that ever-present duster settled on her shoulders. When she comes upon the Grand Elder and acting Master of the Challenge, she gives him a little incline of her head. A touch to respect and deference for the Adren.

“Good afternoon, Rhya. Joey told me that she was leaving town and thus that the Ragabash Elder position is going to be empty as a result. I’m here to hopefully fix that and challenge for the position.”

[Janis Ian] Sarita was not the only one that had considered the ramifications of Killswitch’s absence. Word travels fast about the departing of the Auspice Elder, while Janis’ concerns for Joey are kept to herself with the Rotagar’s sudden leaving. The Fenrir has given a hard long thought to the position; she happens to catch the Silent Strider on the same afternoon heading for the Grand Elder.

She tips her head in a curt nod to Sarita in greeting, red hair spilling down her shoulders in two twin braids that touch to her hips. She tucks her hands in her pockets, waiting for the Strider to speak first as they both approached the Grand Elder.

There is a respectful tilt of her head downward, her body bowing like the branches of a tree caught in a heavy storm, “I too, most esteemed Alpha, come to challenge fer the position.”

[Balance Without Fault] Balance Without Fault regards the two Ragabashes a moment. Then he paces a circle around them where they stand. Dust puffs as he drags the toe of one boot through the dirt.

Challenge circle inscribed, he steps in with them.

“This will be a multipart challenge,” he informs them. “Part one: you are allowed to ask one question of each other, and one only. Make it good.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She looks over at Janis, nodding to her a little and giving a faint smile. There’s nothing in the way of malice in her eyes toward her auspicemate…only the appraising look of a Garou sizing up her competition. She smiles a bit and returns the curt nod with an amicable one of her own.

Her eyes remain on Janis while Balance Without Fault inscribes the circle, looking at him when he steps inside. The first part of the challenge is heard, listened and considered. It is a couple moments before she looks at Janis, head cocking as she crosses her arms over her chest.

“We No-Moons, we have to be good at ferreting out information. We also gotta be good at pointing out where others fall short, so we can help shake them out of their set ways and force them to look at situations—including themselves—differently. By needling them if necessary, hitting them with whatever we have to. We’re there to make sure Litany is considered and understood, not just accepted at face value in the way other people say it is.”

“So,” she says with a half-grin, “that being said. Why, with the Litany in mind, is it a bad idea for me to be Ragabash Elder?”

[Janis Ian] Janis waits patiently, her eyes drawn to the circle that the Grand Elder draws around them, the dust swirling into a little cloud as she moves a fraction to widen her stance; feet braced and balanced evenly with her shoulders. She draws her arms up across her chest, tucking her hands to lay them flat across bare biceps. The tattooed skin of her right arm twitched reflexively under the inked glyphs on her right forearm, the Fenrir glyph that sits on the curve of a deltoids muscle.

She tilts her head down, focused on the Strider as Sarita asks her question. Red eyebrows dance upward, widening her eyes to the question that spills from the Strider’s lips. “Litany itself doesn’t govern who is best chosen, ’tis the actions in ‘ow the No Moon, in question, interprets the Litany and uses it as a tool to best suit their purposes.”

Janis clears her throat, “With that said, I ‘ave neither seen nor ‘eard of yer actions that would say ye’re bad for the job. I cannot judge on face value. The one thing that may go against ye, Strider, is the very nature of yer tribe. Wanderlust. ‘ow can ye dedicate yer time to guiding our auspice if’n ye feel that nip at yer heels to walk with the sun at yer back and the wind in yer face? We’d just be ‘ere again searching for a new auspice elder when that time comes.”

She had one question to ask, “Why, Sarita, do ye want to this position that whatever ye can do for the auspice, it’ll be different from Killswitch-rhya’s time?”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[I will try to get a response in within the 24 hour timeframe, but I am working at the moment so it might not be possible. A slight extension would be appreciated if possible.]]

[Balance Without Fault] “An answer,” Balance Without Fault replies as soon as it becomes apparent that Sarita, like Janis before her, means to answer the question posed to her, “was neither necessary nor requested, Cliaths.

“If you are to play the questioner, you must first learn to listen. Carefully.” A wry smile, “It shouldn’t be possible for a Philodox to outfox a Ragabash.

“Part two. Answer this question: Why shouldn’t I dismiss both your challenges at this point?”

[Janis Ian] “Ye should since ye ‘ave proven that neither of us can listen well enough to figure out the first part of the challenge.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Sarita just grins a little bit when Balance Without Fault points out that he only asked about a question. If there’s admonishment, she doesn’t show it; she merely accepts his point and moves on. Then Janis says that they should, and she cocks her head curiously at the No-Moon before she gives her answer.

“That’s easy, Rhya. You’re absolutely right that a Ragabash needs to be able to listen as well as hear. They also need to be able to listen to what’s not being said and make a judgment call there. As the questioners, we have to look at what might be implied and go from there.”

She pauses a moment. “Now, obviously in this case, both Janis and I made the judgment call and guessed wrong. But my question to you would be this, Rhya…should the Elder of the Auspice be someone who, when faced with a decision to offer more you more or less, simply offer up the bare minimum and hope that’s enough? Or should they take a risk, offer up more at potential cost to themselves to give more information. We have to think on our feet, and if we’re in the field leading a recon mission, we can’t always wait to see what the next order is, step by step.”

“This Sept is beset at the moment. We’re always pretty beset, but not so much at our front door. But when push comes to shove, decisions have to be made and someone needs to be there in order to question…listen, yes, but question as well…the decisions being made. A few too many questions is always a better than then too few. Too many and some time might be wasted in the asking. Too few, and plans aren’t as thought-out as they need to be. If you want someone who’s doing the bare minimum and leaving it at that, then send us packing and hold off. But if you want someone who will think on their own and give more of themselves than expected, well…

She holds her hand up, as if volunteering. “Here you go.”

[Balance Without Fault] When both Cliaths have answered, Balance Without Fault nods to Janis.

“If you don’t feel yourself deserving of the role, then you can only be correct. Your challenge was honorable, Rides-Like-Cowboy, but it is at an end. Stand down.”

He turns back to Sarita.

“Echoes of Laughter, your packmates currently sit two of the five auspice elderships, and they are powerful ones. The Ahroun Elder is our warleader, whose authority in war is superceded only by the Warder’s. The Philodox Elder is the penultimate word of the law in this Sept, whose authority in peace is superceded only by mine. One might argue that between them, your pack already holds significant sway in this Sept.

“Were you to join the Elder Council, that makes three of five. That is a majority, enough to clinch any vote. Furthermore, it might be argued that the Ragabash elder is the check against the power of the other Auspice Elders. That part of the Ragabash Elder’s role would be to ask questions, test the edicts and theories and plans and resolve of the other Elders. To argue against them if need be, and to always present the minority opinion.

“Echoes of Laughter, answer these questions. If you were to become Ragabash Elder, don’t we lose the check your position is meant to represent? Wouldn’t that make your pack — forgive my terminology — a sort of controlling shareholder in this Sept? Isn’t it a good Ragabash’s job to prevent absolute dominance?”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Janis is given a smile—not triumphant, not any kind of Simpsons-esque “HA HA!” type of look, but just a friendly smile when she is dismissed. There’s respect there from the Strider for the Fenrir to have stepped up at all. She turns back to Balance Without Fault quickly, listening to what he says.

A faint smile hits her lips as he lays it out. This is something she actually considered herself when the decision of whether to challenge or came to her mind. She struggled with it for a short while, so it is easy for her to give the reasons that she countered her own doubts with.

“It’s definitely a thing that I can see people being concerned over, Rhya. Before I joined the Unbroken, I myself called it ‘The Elders Pack.’ Making another member of the pack an Auspice Elder would sure as hell be something I would be raising an eyebrow over…you know. If that member wasn’t me.”

She smiles a little, though it’s brief. “And you’re right. A Ragabash should prevent situations where a small group just pushes through everything. They should be able to make sure that more than one opinion is heard, and that all sides of an equation are looked at. It’s our nature and our job.”

“That being said…that’s exactly why I’m in the Unbroken. I’m not there to just fight alongside them, share a pack link and chill in Bellamonte Loft. I’m there because I’m not afraid to question them. Say the things that need to be said…shake them up as much as anyone else.”

“You ask if this gives the Unbroken a controlling interest in the Sept. There’s no way to get around the fact that as you put it, three out of the five Auspice Elders would be bonded together. But that doesn’t mean that the Unbroken will control the Sept. If I thought that was a concern, then to be honest I wouldn’t have ever challenged, Rhya. It’s the uniqueness of my Auspice…questioning everyone and making sure no one is just resting easy or falling along party lines…that makes this not a controlling interest situation.”

“There will be times that we’ll agree, obviously.” She shrugs. “They’ll happen. Maybe it’ll happen more than half the time, maybe not. But there is just as much chance that we’ll disagree…and if I were to agree with them just because we’re packmates, than I’m failing both the Council and the very pack I’m agreeing with against my better judgment.”

“I’ve always gone my own way,” she starts her finish with. “Janis mentioned that the Strider tendencies toward wanderlust could be a detriment, but I see it as an advantage. I’m good and settled, first of all. I wouldn’t have joined a pack otherwise. But the fact that I’ve been on my own for as long as I have, that I’ve had to make up my own mind about things and I didn’t have a party line to toe to outside the Litany, means that I am my own person. I don’t fall into voting blocs just ’cause it makes life easier. Besides, easier is less interesting. The road less traveled is more productive and more fun.”

[Balance Without Fault] “Why,” Balance suggests, sounding reasonable, “don’t you just always speak against your packmates, then? Wouldn’t that be a satisfactory solution? There would be no risk of absolute dominance, and it would fulfill your role of the questioner, would it not?”

[ This was BWF’s Manip + Subt roll:

Ivan Press
Mon 3:09 am
Roll valid
to Hilary Durante
[for bwf!]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 1, 2, 2, 5, 6, 8 (Success x 1 at target 6)

You can roll against it with percep + subt to simply detect falsehood/deception, or you can try percep + empathy to figure out what the underlying truth is. Or both!

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] The words from Balance Without Fault draw pause from the Strider. She’s got a very good face on at the moment…having something to do gives her a chance to forget that she’s had trouble sleeping since Wednesday, had her own personal things she’s working out in her head. The more she’s goal-focused, the more she’s able to focus on being the Sarita she needs to be.

However, she isn’t perfect, and perhaps it’s the mental blow that she’s been suffering that causes her radar to go off and read the authenticity of his words entirely wrong. She cocks an eyebrow, arms crossing over her chest.

“I could do that. I suppose you’re right, it would prevent absolute dominance. But let’s look at that, play a little Devil’s advocate.” She smiles a little. “Since that’s what I’m supposed to be doing anyway.”

“Throwing a monkeywrench into all their plans would sure as hell make certain that the pack wasn’t controlling the direction of the Sept. But isn’t that just another form of a status quo? That runs pretty much counter to what I’m supposed to be doing. It’ll just get us set into a different but equally stagnant way, and in that case I’m not doing my job. Nor is the Sept benefitting. They shouldn’t be able to count against me any more than they can be sure I’m going to just fall in line. A Ragabash Elder needs to be of their own thoughts, not controlled by anyone, and if I get the spot, no one’s gonna escape the old Strider crosshairs without at least a little consideration…Lukas, Kate, Adamidas, Matthieu or even you.”

The smile twists into something a bit lopsided, and she shrugs.

“With that in mind I gotta say, Rhya…can’t really get on board with it. So if that’s what you’re looking for, I’m probably not your gal.”

[Balance Without Fault] Balance bows his head a moment, considering the dirt at his feet. Then:

“Part three. A professional blogger interested in paranormal affairs has an office on the 3rd floor of the [x building], located at [this address in bronzeville]. One of our enemies has FedEx’d him an SD card loaded with potentially veil-damaging photos. The package is currently locked in his inbox. He’ll check first thing in the morning.

“I’ll give you three hours to retrieve the package. After that, your challenge is dismissed, and Evens the Odds’ Ragabash will handle the matter.

“You may use whatever gifts, fetishes, talens, tools, strategies, and/or resources at your disposal. You may begin – now.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She listens quietly to what he says, commits the information to memory. The location, the details…all of it. As soon as he says “Now,” she’s jogging away, giving him a grin.

She heads back to the loft, grabbing a couple of talens—a Chiropteran Spy and a Nightshade—out of the chest at the Loft. And with that done, she takes off toward the building in question, picking up her phone and dialing up her private detective friend.

“Hey, Richard…s’up, sexy? It’s Sarita. Yeah, you too jackass.” It’s fondly said, and with a grin.

“Listen…I need your help. Remember that thing that I do, that you don’t ask questions about? Yes, the one that the cops don’t need to know that I make money off of. Well, turns out someone has something on me that I need to obtain. Can you do me a favor and do a quick check in your awesome civil databases that you have P.I. access to, see if [address] has any active and registered security systems?”

She grins. “I’ll love you forever…”

Logs of the mission:

[paratracker.com] [abbreviated rules!
– IC post in

[paratracker.com] Continuing from forums then —

Roll Investigation + Clout to get info!

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Clout+Investigation]]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10 (Success x 3 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] [ WTF. okay, rules weren’t supposed to be THAT abbreviated.

– IC post in 10 min or less if we’re not rolling (if you IC post at all — I’m just gonna OOC it cuz I’m tiredlazy!)
– Roll in 2 min or less.
– There is no set way to win, nor to lose. However, failure is possible, and can be dangerous!
– That said, it’s also possible to recover from a misstep.
– All in all, feel free to be creative; I’ll adapt to what Sarita does! ]

Now then! Roll Investigation + Clout to get info from the contact *LOL*

[paratracker.com] Sarita finds out that the building in question has 3 entrances (front back and side). Security cameras monitoring each entrance and some interior halls. A fairly simple, suburb-residential-quality security system monitors the doors and windows.

I’ll sketch a quick map!

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Okie. 🙂 *Ponders in the meantime*

[paratracker.com] (http://i24.servimg.com/u/f24/13/34/10/41/breaki10.jpg)

[paratracker.com] Red X marks the spot
Black X’s are elevators
Blue arrows show field of vision for security cams
All doors/windows are alarmed, but it’s a pretty crappo alarm system.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She’ll thank Richard for the information, promise to call him soon, and head on over. This is an office building…are there lights on in the place this late, or just dark with the cameras?

[paratracker.com] There’s a light on. 3rd floor, the office across from the paratracker.com office. Everything else is fairly dark, though emergency lighting is on.

Area looks pretty shady. Trash strewn streets, junky cars, peeling paint and rust on buildings, sirens all night long, etc. Gauntlet is stiff, but not insurmountable (I’ll give you an exact number if you try to cross)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She is gonna peek. If Sept enemies provided this information, they may have something in this area safeguarding it. And she may get lucky and have this building be old enough to exist on the other side.

[paratracker.com] [peek from realm to umbra is +3 diff, so roll gnosis vs diff 10. -1 if you have a mirror.]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Yay rearview on the Bitchmobile! GN]]
Dice Rolled:[ 3 d10 ] 1, 6, 10 (Success x 1 at target 9) [WP]

[paratracker.com] Nice!

Umbra looks about what you’d expect in Bville. A lot of decay, a lot of despair and impotent anger. Banes, but mostly lowlevel ones, barely sentient. There’s one larger one prowling the premises, but it’s uncertain whether it’s been left there as a guard or not.

Roll percep + alert for more!

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Percepty-cepty!]]
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 2, 5, 6, 8, 8 (Success x 3 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] It seems to linger on the third story, near the office with the lighted window.

Oh, and — the building has some umbral presence. Not a lot, but some, more on the third floor than lower down. It might even be solid enough to walk through there.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] All right, so something up in that office is keeping an eye on things. That’ll make things fun.

She was hoping to save this, but she needs some more intel on what’s inside that office. She’s using the Chiropteran Spy to check out the building, report back what’s inside in terms of people or other.

[[GN to Activate]]
Dice Rolled:[ 3 d10 ] 2, 4, 8 (Success x 1 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] Spy is active!

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She’s sending it in to look at primarily the third floor. Any people or other life forms up there, particularly in the target office or the office opposite.

Also, while that’s going on…clarification on the map. To access the fire escape, it is necessary to come in view of the camera in front of the first floor door, short of some dextrous maneuvering, yes?

[paratracker.com] Roll me Wits or Intel + Occult or Enigmas, whatever combo is highest.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Intel+Enigmas]]
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 5, 5, 6, 8, 10 (Success x 3 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] The lowest landing of the fire escape is on the second floor. If she doesn’t pull the ladder down and tries to jump straight up onto it, she might be able to stay out of sight of the camera. Other than that, yes, she’d be in the camera’s FOV.

Spy flappities up to third floor. Unable to find an open window (yay air conditioning = sealed windows!), it simply looks in from outside. Soon enough it returns and reports that all offices are empty except for the lit one. Through a lot of spirit gibberish and confusion — what do bat-spirits know of modern tech? — Sarita manages to figure out there’s a dude in the office across from paratracker.com, working on his computer. He’s typing very, very, very fast. The talen-spirit is disturbed by this dude and doesn’t want to have to go near him again.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She thanks the little guy and has him keep a look out on the outside, find her and warn her if anything similarly disturbing shows up. And she’s going to go look for the outside circuit box, if there is one. It’s her first good chance of bypassing the alarm system.

[paratracker.com] Crappp it wasn’t refreshing. Little guy takes a post on the streetlamp.

Percep + Investigation to find a circuit breaker box outside!

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa]
Dice Rolled:[ 4 d10 ] 3, 7, 8, 8 (Success x 3 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] No breaker box, but the wires run aboveground here. She could snip the one that looks like it goes to this building if she wanted…

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Hmm, but just snipping the wire could shut off all the power, which could trigger the alarms anyway.

She’s gonna go to one of the windows on the bottom floor, check and see if she can tell how the alarms are triggered when a window is open (sensors being lined up, wires, etc.) that will give her a better idea.

[paratracker.com] Percep/Intel + Streetwise/Science, whichever is highest!

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Per+SW
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 1, 4, 7, 7, 9, 10 (Success x 3 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] Looks very simple – just optical sensors that get blocked when the window is opened past a certain point. Other than that, the locks are just catches. The windows open by flapping out and up. Due to the fulcrum being pretty far at the end, she could probably open it 2-3 inches without triggering the alarm if she’s careful (Dex + Streetwise or at a higher diff, Survival)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Man, what she wouldn’t give for Jam Tech. Okay. She’s gonna be alike an octopus, trying to feel out the weaknesses of the damned bottle so she can get in and eat the fish. If you’ve ever seen Deep Rising, that sentence may make sense. But there’s one other spot that she hasn’t considered, and that’s roof entry. So she’s looking for a strong-looking drainage pipe before she goes all-or-nothing and tries to jump onto the fire escape.

[paratracker.com] There are drainage pipes aplenty. Dex + Ath vs diff 7 to climb; an add’l Dex + Stealth vs diff 8 to do it relatively quietly!

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] And now it’s time for some Gift Rolling before this whole Mission Impossible stung First Silence! Dex+Stealth
Dice Rolled:[ 7 d10 ] 1, 2, 3, 6, 9, 10, 10 (Success x 3 at target 6)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Next Up, Blur of Milky Eye!
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 4, 6, 7, 7, 8, 10 (Success x 2 at target 8 )

[paratracker.com] [Silence negates need for the dex+stealth vs diff 8 roll!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] And now Dex+Ath vs. 7…
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 5, 6, 7, 7, 8 (Success x 3 at target 7)

[paratracker.com] Up she goes. Easy climb. We’ll say she’s going up the right side of the building on the map. She can stop and look in the windows if she wants, but it’ll confirm what the spy told her – all offices empty. A lot of small struggling businesses here, Great Ideas that never really took spark. paratracker.com’s office is tiny and dingy and crammed with files, books, photocopies, and burger wrappers. There’s a picture tacked onto a corkboard of a man, a woman, two kids, all of them smiling and chubby. Looks like they’re at Disneyland.

Roof is empty. There’s an attic door, a ventilation shaft, and the fire escape just over the edge.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Looking at the attic door, see if it’s alarmed as well. [[Per+SW, smack me if I should be rolling something else]]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 2, 4, 7, 7, 9, 10 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] Oops. Looks like Advantage forgot an entrance! (No alarm)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Hee. Silly security people. Nobody expects the Strider Inquisition! She gives a quick look around, and then a little Open Seal to get her in.
[[Gnosis]]
Dice Rolled:[ 3 d10 ] 1, 5, 9 (Success x 1 at target 7) [WP]

[paratracker.com] Pop! Lock’s open. Dex + Stealth to ease that creaky bastard open without making noise (sorry, Silence doesn’t cover incidentals!)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Deximus + Stealthimus
Dice Rolled:[ 7 d10 ] 2, 3, 3, 4, 4, 6, 8, 10, 10 (Success x 4 at target 6) Re-rolls: 2

[paratracker.com] Open without a sound! Dropping down doesn’t make a sound either. Attic is dusty as hell. Hope you don’t have allergies. It appears to run through most of the third story, though ventilation pipes are obviously closed off. There are ceiling panels though. How good’s your mental map?

(Intel + Streetwise/Investigation, whichever is higher)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Int+SW; This is 3rd WP. Noted so I can keep track!]]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 3, 4, 4, 4, 7, 8 (Success x 2 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] 3 suxx, not 2!

How nice do we wanna be? Odds – nice. Evens – not nice.
Dice Rolled:[ 1 d10 ] 9 (Success x 1 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] Lucky you!

There’s a trapdoor right over the red X. Another one in the corner office (front left corner) and another in the lit office.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Carefully…CAREFULLY open that sumbitch up and slide on in. [[At least one Dex+Stealth, I’m assuming?]]
Dice Rolled:[ 7 d10 ] 2, 2, 2, 3, 3, 3, 7, 10 (Success x 2 at target 6) Re-rolls: 1

[paratracker.com] [that wasn’t as good. do the neighbors hear? — sound, not vision, no blur bonus.]
Dice Rolled:[ 4 d10 ] 1, 2, 6, 9 (Success x 1 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] Typing next door — which is frenetically fast, so fast the keystrokes blur together, what the hell could he be writing? — stops for a tick. Then continues again. Ceiling panel as been removed. Sarita can drop down soundlessly, but don’t land on a rustly pile of loose papers or burger wrappers!

[Wits + Stealth to land right!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Wits+Stealth!]]
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 2, 3, 9, 9, 10 (Success x 3 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] Nice landing. Office is all crowded. Smells like unwashed geek. Ratty old books everywhere, stuff like VAMPIRE COMPENDIUM and ELVES: FACT OR FICTION? and THINGS THAT GO BUMP. Also lots and lots of papers from very questionable journals. Oh, and those ubiquitous burger wrappers. Computer is old, 2004 at best, small form factor and sitting on the desk, which is also totally crowded with supernatural “research”. Keyboard looks sticky, and so does the phone. Message indicator is blinking 2 new messages. Lots of typing going on across the hall, noisy enough to vibrate through the walls.

[paratracker.com] Intel + Investigation or Science to figure out how to program the VCR. Or, y’know. Listen through receiver.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Ugh. Idiot X-Files freaks. She looks around, then leans down to look at the answering machine and figure this stupid thing out.

[[Int+Inv]]
Dice Rolled:[ 4 d10 ] 1, 2, 7, 8 (Success x 1 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] She comes perilously close to letting that thing squawk into the room. It actually starts hissing dead-air when Sarita hits the STOP button, then pushes a few more, then finally gets it right.

First message is boring, wife asking when he’s coming home. Second one is a distorted voice, probably run through some anonymizer. Wants to know if he’s gotten the package, and to contact “them” at (this number) if he wants more where it came from.

[Intel + Streetwise for a chance at more info!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Int+SW]]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 2, 4, 6, 6, 9, 10 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[paratracker.com] She hasn’t been in the area long, but that sharp mind of hers has osmosed area codes and prefixes. That number comes from a swanky part of town — north shore, home of intimidatingly huge houses and country clubs and rich rich people. It’s a landline, not a cell phone. Also probably not the number attached to typomaniac next door — that guy’s a whole different can of worms.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She looks around, grabs a piece of paper and writes down the number, just in case committing it into memory isn’t good enough. And then she starts looking for the damned package.

[paratracker.com] Open seal to unlock desk, then Dex+Stealth vs diff 8 to dig around without anything rattling, crunching, plinking or thudding.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Open Seal]]
Dice Rolled:[ 3 d10 ] 1, 5, 7 (Failure at target 7)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Trying again at higher diff! WP +4]]
Dice Rolled:[ 3 d10 ] 1, 6, 7 (Failure at target 8 ) [WP]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Oh fuck’s sake]]

[paratracker.com] [Wits + Streetwise to do this the old fashioned way! Diff 7.]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Wits+SW]]
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 2, 6, 7, 8, 8 (Success x 3 at target 7)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Dex+Stealth
Dice Rolled:[ 7 d10 ] 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 (Success x 1 at target 8 )

[paratracker.com] Nice lockpickin’. Close call on the searching though. All sorts of random shit in there. Pens. Pencils. Pencil sharpener. Ruler. Stapler. Magnifying glass. Stickie notes. Slinky toy. CD holder. Envelopes. Rubik’s cube. An old Playboy. A can of air duster. A stuffed koala bear that SQUEAKS — or almost squeaked —

and an overnight envelope from FedEx. Return address is the same as mailing address, and both are this building, this room.

[paratracker.com] [+1 WP for successfully getting the package!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] All right, time to try and exit the way we came, since out the door still leaves us with potentially tricky alarms and Sarita is not a bomb squad person! First off, Dex+Ath!
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 1, 7, 8, 8, 9 (Success x 2 at target 8 )

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] And pulling up! Str+Ath!
Dice Rolled:[ 3 d10 ] 2, 6, 7 (Success x 2 at target 7) [WP]

[paratracker.com] Safe in the attic again!

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] And back to the roof we’re headed. Nasty fucker may warrant more attention later, but he’s still an unknown quantity and dealing with him may screw the retrieval mission. So she’s headed back to the roof, and down the pipe.

[paratracker.com] One str+ath (diff 7) to get out of the attic the same way, and then a dex+ath (diff 4) to shimmy down the drainpipe!

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Str+Ath
Dice Rolled:[ 3 d10 ] 1, 4, 8 (Failure at target 7)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Higher diff, dammit!]]
Dice Rolled:[ 3 d10 ] 2, 6, 8 (Success x 2 at target 8 ) [WP]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] And Dex+Ath
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 5, 6, 8, 8, 9 (Success x 5 at target 4)

[paratracker.com] WPless, but package in hand and home free! Back to the boards with thee. I’ll post up this transcript for those interested.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Woot!

[paratracker.com] [Exeunt!]

[Balance Without Fault] Not an easy task. Lots of close calls. When Sarita returns to the Caern, she’s utterly drained; probably wants nothing more than to fall into bed and sleep for a few days.

Balance is still waiting for her, though. The challenge circle remains unbroken. And he doesn’t give her a moment’s rest.

“Welcome back,” he greets her. “Report.”

[For the record: Truth of Gaia is active.]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Sarita looks exhausted, a little wobbly on her feet. She rubs the side of her face as she approaches Balance Without Fault, holding SD card. When the Grand Elder greets her and asks for her report, she straightens a little bit, shaking off the weariness for a moment.

“Whoo boy…okay. So, on the way to the location you gave me, I called up a contact of mine, got the security layout for the place. Stopped by Katherine’s loft and picked up a couple of talens for pack use that might do me well…a Chiropteran Spy and Nightshade. As it turned out, the Spy was useful, the Nightshade not needed.

“Once I got to the location, it was evident that the information I’d gotten from my source panned out. Security cameras, nothing particularly fancy but pretty extensive to prevent people getting in. The lights were more or less out, with the exception of one office across from Mr. “I Want To Believe.” Peeking across the Gauntlet showed a few Banes, only one that was anything to speak of. It was creeping around the place, bein’ a creeper.”

She pauses, there, looking down at the SD card with a bit of a frown before she looks back.

“That office across from the blogger’s got someone…less than normal inside of it. It needs to be checked out…I would have done it myself, but I was fairly spent and I figured retrieving the card was more time-critical. Judgment call. I’d be happy to go out with whoever might be sent.

“Anyway, I used the Spy to check the place out; it confirmed that there was something off about the guy. Had it do some guard duty while I checked out the security a bit closer…windows, circuit box, anything like that. Dropped into Silence and Blur of the Milky Eye, then decided to go pipe-climbing to the roof, found an in there that took me into the building. The crawlspace had a dropdown directly into the blogger’s office.

“Once I was inside, I did a little bit of checking. There wasn’t a hell of a lot I could do with the potentially Wyrm-ridden guy typing away right next door, but I checked phone messages…our boy got a call from the people who sent it, promising that there was more if they wanted it.”

She pulls out the scrap of paper with the phone number on it. “This is the number that they left. Sounds like one of those ritzy posh areas. I got into the desk, grabbed the envelope, then came back the way I went.”

She shrugs. “Outside of this and whatever our enemies are trying to pass over, there’s not a hell of a lot that he has that seems legit. Alternative press bullshit, the usual. He’s an idiot who’s read too damned much Dylan Dog or some other bullshit comic book. If we take care of the source and strike out the guy in the other office, we should be fine.”

She holds up the SD card. “There ya go. I’m sure that can be analyzed or some sort of thing to get some info on who sent it.”

[Balance Without Fault] Anyone can see Sarita is exhausted. And there are watchers now – curious parties drifting by to see what was going on. She can see the Ragabash Guardian in the audience. He raises a hand in a friendly wave as she looks his way.

Then it’s Balance Without Fault, it’s her report, it’s the events of the night laid out and laid bare for inspection.

The Grand Elder listens carefully to every word. He weighs every word for truth, not because he distrusts this particular Ragabash but because that is his job. He listens to her explain her setup, her entry, the office next door, the extraction, the exit. Even more keenly, he listens to her rationale. Her reasons. Why she did what she did. Why she didn’t do what she didn’t do.

When she’s done, Balance holds his hand out for the SD card, turns the small thing over in his hand a few times, then tosses it to the Ragabash Guardian.

“If you were the Ragabash Elder, leader of our scouts,” he says, “what would your next move be?”

[Sinclair] There’s an unexpected party that’s come drifting over to watch the rest of the challenge. Around Sinclair there’s a faint smell of ozone, her eyes a bit brighter than usual, like she’s high on something, the edges of her body jazzed somehow — that all may be illusion. No one in Chicago has seen her since she skipped town early one morning to drive to San Diego, but here she is.

Poor Lucille, dropping the phone in the Loft when visible electricity and soundwaves leapt out of the handset and conformed themselves in midair to the shape of the Galliard.

Someone — maybe Lukas — asked her why she didn’t just call a phone at the Caern. Reason the first: she’s not sure anyone would pick up. Reason the second: That just seems wrong, y’know, like… apparating inside Hogwarts or something.

She’s not here to stay for more than a matter of hours, she told them through Perun, but she zapped her and drove to the Caern and walked up to this particular challenge circle tonight to stand and watch, observe, remember. Her long hair is down, arms crossed over her shoulders. There’s a bright blue streak in that hair now, and a braid to the left side of her face that’s got a couple of beads and a feather hanging at the end. Sinclair catches Sarita’s eye sometime during her report.

Winks.

[Milo Sweeney] Among the onlookers come to watch this challenge, there’s a relative newcomer in the crowd. He doesn’t exactly blend in today, because Maelstrom is a relatively small sept. Even so, Milo keeps out of the way, nondescript in boring dark colors, hands resting in the pockets of his zipped up hoodie.

He didn’t come here specifically to watch. Still without a pack, the quiet Gaian pulls his weight anyway, helping out the Theurges that tend the land, and he scouts the area surrounding the Caern, including that notorious construction site.

On his way back through, the commotion at the challenge circle caught his attention. Curiosity tugging him relentlessly, he goes to watch how challenges are handled here. He recognizes Sarita, vaguely, from when he stayed at The Brotherhood before. He remembers she always had a friendly word when they passed each other in the hall.

Shifting around the small collection of onlookers, Milo makes his way a little closer, for a better look. He doesn’t wink, should she happen to look his way, but if she does he tips his chin up, mouth quirked in a slight smile.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She doesn’t notice Milo show up; she’s too damn tired, both mentally and physically, to do so. If she did, he’d get a quick smile and a wink, but alas. She does however feel the pricking of a pack member drawing close, and is surprised, momentarily pausing, when she realizes that it’s neither Lukas nor Katherine. In that moment of surprise there are no words over the pack link, just gratitude.

That momentary pause also has her considering her answer. She runs a hand through her hair, fingers clenching to gather it together right at the back of her skull as she purses her lips.

“I’d have that SD card analyzed, see if there’s any infosend a pack out to do a fuller assessment and based on that, if they thought they could handle it, as quiet of a removal of the bane if possible. One that’s balanced, has a Theurge in it at least for the extra spirit dealing-with mojo. If there’re no packs immediately available, a grouping of whoever’s available. Give Derek or Izzy a call, have them run the phone number of the guy who called our boy the Frog Broth…err, the ghosthunter. That would give us an address we could stake out, and give us an idea of where we could go from there.”

She pauses and points at the SD card in the Guardian’s hand. “I’d also have the data on that SD card checked out, see if there’s any information on there that helps us identify the source. Might not help, but you never know.

“The one at the office would have to be done really quietly. The guy in the office across from Blogger Boy didn’t seem to necessarily be the same kind of nasty as we had shining a light on our dubious affairs, but that doesn’t mean the two aren’t related. If we already have someone in place staking out the address, then any reaction from the elimination of Typity-Type could betray some sort of information in the Master Plan, so to speak.”

She nods. “So yeah. Two-pronged situation, to deal with one—maybe two—possible threats. That’s the way I’d go.”

[Balance Without Fault] There’s no pause. No deep breath before the plunge. No drumroll before the envelope is opened. As soon as Sarita finishes, Balance speaks the verdict.

“Sarita Echoes-of-Laughter, you have proven yourself a worthy successor to Laughs in the Face of Death.”

That’s not where it ends. There’s no room for celebration yet; no deep breath of relief. No time for that. He continues immediately — levelly, pitilessly, dissecting each moment of her performance tonight. Point by point. Action by action.

“In the single question you asked of Janis Ian,” he says, “you did not attack her, though you could have. You aimed at yourself instead, and that takes courage. It’s also a necessity. No Ragabash can hope to question others if they do not question themselves first.

“Too often young Ragabashes forget that their role is not an excuse to be disrespectful, rebellious, or arrogant. A Ragabash does not question because she are always right, and everyone else is always wrong. She questions because that is her duty, and because by doing so, she strengthens the pack, the Sept, and the Nation.

“You did not forget that tonight, Sarita. Well done.

“What you did forget was to listen carefully; to pay attention. And what I said then is still true. A good Ragabash must listen carefully before she speaks. If your job is to find the weakness in any argument, any plan, then you must know the argument and the plan as well as its proposer. Poorly done.

“That said, that test was not wholly fair. But it was never meant to be. I wanted to test your wits and your ears. But even more, I wanted to test how you would respond to a setback. I wanted to see if you would grow sullen or combatative. If you would argue, or sulk.

“You did not. You responded with courage and good humor. With intelligence, and with tenacity. Well done.

“The concern that your sitting the Auspice Council may unbalance things in your pack’s favor is a valid one. It is also one that will continue to dog you, I suspect, long after this challenge. You have defended yourself well tonight, but words are words. You will need to defend yourself again and again against this charge. You will have to prove with your actions that you are capable of thinking for yourself. That when you speak with the Ahroun and Philodox elders, you are not blindly following. That when you speak against them, you are not blindly rebelling.

“You have taken one step toward that proof tonight. You rejected my flatly ludicrous demand that you always speak against your pack. I don’t think you ever realized my true intentions, and a Ragabash Alpha will have to be sharper than that — but perhaps that made your trial by fire all the more telling. Even when you thought I, the Grand Elder of the Sept, demanded this of you; even when you must have thought I might fail you for refusing, you refused.

“Politely. Respectfully. But with the same courage and good humor you have shown throughout this challenge. Well done.

“Those were all tests of your social abilities as Ragabash Alpha. But we are a Sept of war, and at war. Your abilities as the scoutmaster will be just as important, if not more so. You will need to rally and direct the Ragabashes — a task often harder than herding cats. You cannot hope to do that if you do not first prove yourself an adept scout yourself.

“That was the purpose of the final part of this challenge. You were tasked to retrieve a sensitive item. It was an urgent matter, and I was glad to see you wasted no time, and that you were clever and resourceful in your solution to the problem.

“Still, when offered any resource you could gather, you forgot the single most important resource of all: your allies. You could have asked the help of your packmates. Other Ragabashes. Even Broken Glass, the Ragabash who first unearthed this situation. You are a Strider, and perhaps accustomed to working alone — but you have chosen to join this Sept, and you are challenging to lead its Ragabashes. A good leader doesn’t merely dominate; she guides, and shapes, and weaves her followers into a coherent whole.

“Perhaps that, too, is an unfair expectation. After all, you were in the middle of a challenge, and perhaps you thought that you would fail if you did not go alone. Still; this is something you will have to keep in mind from here on out.

“As for the mission itself: you proved yourself a more than capable scout tonight. You accomplished the task I laid before you, as I suspected you might. You retrieved the flashdrive. You even unearthed its source. Well done.

“But as you may have already guessed, that was not the true test. We knew, long before I sent you in, of the man across the office and the bane that follows him about. I withheld this information to see what you, alone in the field with a time-sensitive mission, would do in response. And more importantly, why.

“Had you attacked blindly without concern for your mission, you would have failed. We have no use for a stupid Ragabash Alpha. Had you ignored the situation simply because you were not instructed to take care of it, you would have failed. We have no use for a Ragabash Alpha who cannot think for herself.

“Had you decided the threat was too great not to investigate, and investigate now, you may well have succeeded all the same. But in the end, you decided it was more important to return to the Sept with the stolen data before the workday begins. You decided that your given mission was more time-sensitive, but you did not forget about the snag. You gave your reasons clearly, without attempting to spin it in your favor. You have a clear plan of action for dealing with the additional confounding factor.

“That is completely valid, and shows sound judgment and wisdom on your part. Well done.

“One final detail, then. When you spoke of your next plans, you laid forth intelligent and sound ideas. However, don’t forget that your role as the scoutmaster of this Sept requires you to disseminate information to the other Elders; to hear their input; to formulate a cohesive response.

“I trust your judgment and your expertise. I know in an emergency, you will act quickly and with cunning. That is why you have proven worthy of the position you seek. But there is no room for uncertain plans and weak alliances in this Sept. As the old human adage goes, we must stand together or die alone.”

At last, a pause. Balance Without Fault rotates his head on his shoulders, cracking his vertebrae. Then, with a ring of formality in his voice:

“Echoes of Laughter, knowing now the full burden of your duties and responsibilities, do you still seek the position of Ragabash Elder of Maelstrom?”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] There may not be time for a breath of relief before Balance Without Fault starts assessing, but one is taken just the same. She couldn’t have avoided it even if she’d tried. The tension in her shoulders, running down her spine doesn’t vanish, but does alleviate somewhat as the pressure of at least a couple details, like “Whoops, lost us the totem, guys” vanishes into the ether.

That moment is purposefully kept short-lived, though. The Grand Elder goes into his assessment, and she listens. She hears the points she did well, and the places where she slipped up. There is a hint of a grin, tired as it is, when the Glass Walker mentions that the datacard was not the true test. Not a ‘I’m so cool for realizing,’ but an appreciation of the ruse. It’s exactly the sort of thing that a No-Moon should appreciate, after all.

Her praises get little nods, maybe a smile here or there when something she wasn’t totally sure about—the assertion regarding going against her packmates, or her decision to return instead of learning more about the bane—is detailed. The critiques, the things she could have done better…she listens, and she nods. The idea of going to others in the Sept for aid gets a look on her face—the kind that you would expect someone to get when they knew they had the right answer on Jeopardy! but went for something else instead. But in all she listens, she files away as lessons learned.

Then he straightens. And he asks her if she still seeks the position. And she understands why…after all of this, some people might actually say no, thinking it’s too much.

She doesn’t say no. She just nods, and speaks four words.

“That I do, Rhya.”

…hey, a simple “Yes” would have been too straight-forward. This is Sarita, after all.

[Balance Without Fault] “Then it is yours.”

Balance Without Fault takes a step backward, his heel deliberately breaking through the challenge circle. He turns to the onlookers – raising his voice loud and clear.

“Wolves of the Maelstrom: your Ragabash Elder, Echoes of Laughter.”

[excellent challenge, all! thanks for participating! i’ll leave this post in this forum for a while longer, then move it into moot forums since this sort of thing usually happens at moots.]

[Katherine Bellamonte] Katherine has approached, toward the end of things. She brushes against her sister who also watches; a hand briefly twitching one of Sinclair’s fingertips in a wordless hello before she turns her eyes on the Challenge Circle.

Watchful.
Waiting.

When Balance Without Fault officially names her sister the Ragabash Elder; the Silver Fang’s smile is genteel in its pleasure. Ever dignified, that was Katherine. “Well done, Ragabash Elder for Maelstrom.” She greets her with the new title, her warmth tinged with a pack-mate’s tease.

[Lukas Wyrmbringer] Lukas did, indeed, want to know why Sinclair hadn’t just call someone at the Caern. Sinclair explained it in Harry Potter terms; this led to a conversation in his car, en route from Loft to Caern, about how lame or awesome each of the HP movies were.

“I can’t wait for the next one,” he confesses, pulling the chainlink fence open to slip through into the bawn,

and out of mortal sight.

Later, much later:

Of all the packmates, Wyrmbreaker is the only one tonight who’s chosen to take his animal form. It’s cold, after all, and he walked out in his pajamas. When that first thrill of mingled excitement and relief comes across the totemlink, the black wolf’s ears prick. When the final question is asked, he shifts where he sits, front paws stamping back and forth once or twice.

Then Sarita accepts. And he rises to his feet, ready. When Balance Without Fault breaks the line, the black wolf bounds forward, rears up on his hind legs to plant big muddy paws on Sarita’s shoulders. Whuf! he says, closes his teeth lightly and affectionately on his packmate’s — well. Her face. It’s a gentle gesture, though, and brief. A moment later he drops down. He circles around his packmates a few times as though to keep them, protect them, ward them, then sits, lolling his tongue out.

In this form, even his thoughts are feral and fragmentary:

Good words. Clever scout! Proud!

[Milo Sweeney] Milo listens to the Grand Elder’s words as he details where Sarita went right and where she went wrong, his eyes on the Strider. Her humor in the face of it all, weary as it is, is a relief to see. That she doesn’t sulk or flail about or make excuses for a misstep or a thing overlooked. And also that she doesn’t preen when she receives praise.

His mouth quirks when she says those four words. Congratulations will wait for another time, though, maybe when Sarita’s had some sleep. Now, her packmates go to her, and the quiet Child of Gaia slips away.

[Sinclair] Perhaps due to the nature of her auspice, Sinclair is silent and steady for the remainder of the challenge after that wink given to Sarita. She flicks Kate’s fingertips back, a subtle hello, but otherwise she’s watching Balance Without Fault and Echoes of Laughter. She stands by Lukas’s lupus form, but she understands the words the Grand Elder and Ragabash use better when she’s like this without the urges and instincts of a wolf’s body tugging at her.

She’d remember it just as well if she were in lupus. She’d remember it differently, though.

Of all the Unbroken, her reaction is the quietest. The two Adrens move forward to congratulate Sarita, one tidily and one muddily, one with a tease, one with a nomf to the face. Sinclair hangs back a bit, then walks forward. She’s taking a breath, letting go the role, hanging onto the challenge for later to write it all down, but as she comes over to her pack she grins. Her hand drops and scritches Lukas’s neck and behind his ear affectionately as he circles them — happily, proudly, protectively.

She gives the Strider a tight, quick hug. “You kicked ass,” she tells her while she squeezes her, offhand, as though implying that it’s so obvious it goes without saying. Letting her go, she swings around and claps her hands on Kate and Sarita’s backs, slings her arms around their shoulders. “Lukas, putcher manface back on. I got til eight a.m. central before I have a phone call to catch back to San Diego, so we’re gonna go get wasted. Champagne for Kate, vodka for you, Hpnotiq for me, and…Idaknow, we gotta figure out what the Strider tribal booze is.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] When the announcement is made, she finally relaxes, slumping a bit. Katherine greets her by title and a smile; Lukas puts lupine paws on her shoulder and bites her face. They’re a varied pack, you see. Sarita almost stumbles at the sudden gesture, laughing a bit. She finally notices Milo, giving him a little nod as he departs just before Sinclair comes up. She’s pulled out her cheapo ancient cellphone and sending a text—poorly—when Sinclair comings up and hugs her.

“Thanks, guys.” She rubs at her eyes, and smirks at the question of Strider tribal booze.

“I don’t know what it is worldwide, I ain’t society enough to know what Egyptian booze there is. But here in Chicago, I decree it’s freakin’ Jimmy Cuervo.” She chuckles, the blinks and shakes her head.

“Let’s do it.” And after a nod of respect to the Grand Elder, she turns to leave with her pack, texting badly along the way.

Big-Ass Meeting From Hell

[Balance Without Fault] [folks, clarification — sorry if this shuts anyone out, but of the Garou, only Tribal and Auspice alphas are invited. of the kin, everyone can come.]

[Balance Without Fault] Unsurprisingly, the Brotherhood of Thieves is the venue for tonight’s meeting. The restaurant has been closed, the front door locked and hung with a PRIVATE PARTY sign. The tables and chairs have been rearranged into a large circle.

Balance Without Fault enters alone, unaccompanied by his packmate or the Warder. In true Glass Walker fashion, he’s in suit and tie; he looks crisp and sharp, and it’s just a little jarring to see him like this. So normal, like a trader from the Chicago Stock Exchange coming for an after-work drink.

He takes one of the two wingback chairs. The other is immediately cleared away. That says something about how much this is or isn’t a casual discussion where rank does not factor in. Hint: it isn’t. He confers quietly with Jenny for a moment, then, who leaves the room and soon returns with … a magic eight-ball, of all things.

Those nearby can hear her ask, “Will this do?” They can see Balance Without Fault’s mouth quirk into an amused smile as he accepts it.

“Perfect,” he says.

And then he claps his hands together, three time, calling for attention.

“Welcome, everyone. Thanks for coming. Here are the rules tonight: one speaker at a time. He or she who holds the magic eight ball,” and he holds this aloft, “speaks. No one else.

“Keep a respectful tone, particularly to those of greater rank. For those of equal rank, the Auspice Council holds precedence over the Tribal Alphas. For kin, those with renown hold precedence over those without.

“In case of dispute, we will not go to challenges because of the mixed crowd. A Philodox will be called upon to mediate. If mediation fails, I am the final arbiter.

“Anyone violating these rules once will be given one warning, and one only. After that, you’re out of the meeting, and your viewpoint will be disregarded. The staff has kindly set up refreshments in the kitchen. If you feel yourself getting hot under the collar, go get a drink and come back when you’re calmer.

“Now — settle in, everyone. The meeting will formally begin in,” a glance at his wristwatch, “five minutes.”

[okay folks, go ahead and post in if you want to! otherwise we’ll just assume you’re here. BwF will open the floor shortly!]

[Balance Without Fault] [erp, change that to read: “After that, you’re out of the meeting, your viewpoint will be disregarded, and appropriate judgment will be rendered.”]

[Jackson Montgomery] [[Not posting in]]

[August Grant] August had arrived early. She wanted a good seat. By some reason – she thought that this might end up turning into a good show – and she wanted to be in the front row.

The Coggie kinfolk had dressed up for this evening. She wore a soft pink colored sweater with a V-neck, a pair of skinny jeans and dark brown heeled boots. She no longer attempted to hide her belly which was beginning to swell. There was no point any longer. And, against one shoulder, her little one, Ella, slept peacefully. {Who was gonna watch the kid afterall, all the kinfolk were here!}

She really had no intention of saying anything – she was just here to listen. And maybe eye a certain young man who she kinda had a crush on.

[Leon Davenport] Leon arrived at the meeting, not entirely sure if he should be there but being there nonetheless. He had annonced that he was gonig to take the Glass Walkers kin under his protection and no one challenged him. So, guess it means he was the tribe’s Elder in some way. If not, well Balance Without Fault will kick him out. Better to presume tonight than miss honoring your duties.

He was dressed nicely, in a dark, striped suit with a blue shirt and tie. He walked in, looking around, bowing slightly to BWF and Lukas, nodding to to Gina and Jackson, mostly ignoring the rest. Either he didn’t know them or..didn’t care to acknowledge them.

[Rain McKellar] August had company in the early arrivals. Another Unicorn, this one with dark hair and no babe in arms. The songbird is bereft of her usual company, no dark case at her side, no voice to share with the others. She’s wearing her best, dark jeans and a neatly pressed white button down. Though her warmth could be infectious, could spread to fill a room even this wide and this full of faces, Rain kept that charisma and that smile and that presence quiet tonight. She takes her seat with her Tribe, folds her hands in her lap, and watches the others filter in and settle themselves.

[Joey] [I won’t be posting Quinn in unless she has something to say, but she’s there!]

[Balance Without Fault] As soon as Balance lays eyes on August’s baby, he beckons Jenny over. The Fianna kinswoman bends as the Grand Elder lifts his chin, speaking directly to her ear. After a moment she nods, walks across the floor, and offers August an apologetic smile.

“Miss, the Grand Elder wanted me to take your baby upstairs for a few hours. There’s a lotta Rage in here and we don’t want your little one havin’ nightmares. I’ll leave her with Reuben; she’ll be in good hands.”

[Izzy Montoya] Unsurprisingly, it’s the goddamn Brotherhood Of motherfucking Thieves where they decide to have this little powwow. Izzy can count the number of times she’s willingly set foot in this establishment since her imprisonment here on one hand. Hell, on two fingers if she counts this time, though it’s not exactly willingness that has her here. It might be considered curiosity, but more likely it’s a simple thing:

Kora asked. Izzy came.

It says something, that. She’s a respect for The Jarl, (Not her[i] jarl, [i]the jarl. A minute difference that means something to Izzy alone), for the Last Watch. She’s dressed as she always is – business casual, with her weapon a bulge at the small of her back under her blazer, her hair down, her expression… well. Expressionless, other than a slight jump of the muscle at the hinge of her jaw, where she clenches her teeth together briefly, sets her jaw, lifts her chin and enters.

And gets a drink. No way is she sitting through this stone cold sober. No fucking way.

[Hunter] Hunter Matthews stalks through the door with his pack-mate and a certain bone-gnawer kin while everyone is still milling around. Seats are taken, Hunter remains silent.

[Balance Without Fault] [folks, it was pointed out to me that kieran was the only uktena in town, and ergo the default uktena alpha. if anyone has him in AIM, call him back in!]

[Gina McClaren] *Gina’d come home late, but that hadn’t stopped the pikey from being in the kitchen and underfoot since early morning. The more time she spent at Jenny’s elbow, the more likely it was the saintly blonde would let slip the secrets to her cranberry oat-muffins. As folks file in the Strider pickpocket finally emerges from the kitchen, long hair bound in a messy loop off her neck, floury hand marks on the dull black of her skirt, tank top askew, a smudge of icing sugar across a caramel shoulder. She hops up on a stool near the back, as far removed from those of her tribe as she can get. God knew her voice would carry if she had anything to say in earnest. Those she knows get nods of recognition, and a worn smile.*

[Carter Roth] Carter is present, but he remains close to the exit his hands deep within his pockets and his eyes wary and mistrustful, he didnt know what this was all about and he didnt like it one bit.

But he was here, as a test of himself and a test of the garou, to see what they were up to. He couldn’t very well pass up that now could he.

[Carter is here, but I may not be going to be on and off]

[Rosie] The certain Bone Gnawer kinfolk finds a seat near or by or somewhere in the vicinity of Hunter. She sits: quiet and unobtrusive.

[Amunet Knezevic] Amunet made her way in quietly, several minutes before the meeting was to start. She’s in her own jacket, and the iPad has been left at the condo. She remembers very few times in her life when she has been this nervous. When so much has been riding on a single night.

Moving to the far side of the room, she finds a spot where she can watch the comings and goings, back against the wall to protect herself from surprises. Her eyes flicker around the room as it populates, but the only one they rest on more than a second or two is her sister.

[Holden] A grizzly bearded Fenrir takes a seat out of the way, he doesn’t suppose he will have much to say so the distance does him well.

[August Grant] Oh good! Someone to watch the baby! August likes Jenny – afterall, they spent a lot of time hanging out in the kitchen when August lived here..

The young woman gives Jenny a smile. “Of course.. I didn’t have anyone else to watch her.. Thank you. Tell Reuben she might be hungry..” Ella gets a kiss on the side of her head and the baby is lifted from her arms and offered out to the kin.. a moment later, the diaper bag is also offered out.

[Starla Navarro] There is a painted Unicorn that has joined the others, Starla following on Rain’s heels easily, ducking her head down as she finds a seat next to her tribe mate. Dark head lifting to look around, skirting her eyes across the room at the faces that were familiar and not; the freckles dance across the bridge of her nose and her left cheek. She tucks her hands in her lap, leaning to the side to nudge Rain’s shoulder with her own.

[Kyle] (Not going to post for Kyle unless he has something to say or someone asks him questions other wise he’s just doing his usual watch and listen routine 🙂 )

[Bridget Geroux] The Canadian Fianna kinfolk finds herself at this gathering in her usual state of confusion. She doesn’t look quite like she knows what’s going on. However, she doesn’t appear to be under the influence of anything. She wears a simple black maxi dress, gathered at the waist by a beat-up leather belt, a hunter green jacket covering her bare shoulders, and of course her combat boots.

Bridget finds a place to sit where she can stretch her legs: she knows she’ll probably want to fidget if the Rage gets a bit much. She also wisely follows Izzy’s lead by getting herself a small glass of whiskey. She returns and smiles at the few here she recognizes and is on good terms with: Hunter, Gina, Kyle, Sarita. The Fianna kinswoman does her best to control the feral urges to move around while surrounded by so much Rage.

[Kora] A cool spring evening; spring already, light lingering in the west far longer than she had remembered. The heavily pregnant Fenrir – eight months, perhaps more? – pushes past the private party signs, into the familiar restaurant interior. Her hair is twisted into a loose braid, strands pulled free by the wind. Kora is slower than she was; careful of her body. She walks with her shoulders pulled further back to balance the weight of her stomach. Which is all the more evident when she strips off her winter coat and sets it aside on a coat tree, wrapping a hand-knitted scarf around it in a winding pattern.

She finds her way among her kin, but does not take a seat. Instead, she remains standing at their back, her feet shoulder-width apart, her arms crossed – below her breasts, above the swell of her stomach. There is an expectant tension in her spine and shoulders, and a firm set to her jaw.

[Derek Anderson] Derek came in, dressed in pants and sweater, his kind blue eyes looking around. He bowed respectfully to Balance Without Fault, did the same for Lukas and walked around, greeting those he knew a little with a nod: Hunter, Amunet, Gina, Matthieu and Jackson when the last two arrive.

He nodded and smiled slightly at Sarita when he see her. Izzy received a grin when he pass her by “Hello Detective”

His attention then was on August and Rain, offering htem a warm smile and walking to them “Good evening ladies, I hope you’re doing well”

[Danicka Musil] [I’m totally making Damon post Danicka in with Lukas. I’m in the middle of eating. :p ]

[Wyrmbreaker] Punctual, Lukas arrives moments before Balance lays down the protocol for the meeting. And not in his own car but in Danicka’s, riding shotgun while scarfing down the last of whatever dinner they went out to. Looks like lamb-stuffed cabbage.

Getting out, anyone looking out the windows can see him stepping out of her car, buttoning his overcoat against the wind. He moves ahead to get the door; she laughs, running a few steps after him, which makes him turn around, which gives her the opportunity to lean up and wipe a dab of tomato-based sauce from his cheek. And kiss him.

Public displays of affection out of his system, Wyrmbreaker is somber and dignified, walking in the door. He sees that his wingback chair is taken, the other cleared away. He goes to sit by the bar instead, where Danny hovers with a nervous grin.

“No drinks here tonight, Mr. Wyrmbreaker. Grand Elder says all the food and alcoholic drink is to be served in the kitchen. Nothing but ice water here.”

Lukas huffs a laugh under his breath. “Not a problem, Danny.” He takes a seat on a barstool, shifting one a little closer for Danicka.

[Matthieu] Matthieu arrives on time, even a little early. Ever the peacock the lovely Silver Fang arrives just in time to display the finely crafted suit that he has doubtless poured six months of your average man’s salary into getting each and every thread just right. His entrance was as much a display of his tribes divine right as it was a display of his own natural beauty. Not only was he the representative of his Auspice on the council now but he also stood as Alpha of Harrier’s grace. He was a living representative not only of his tribe but his house as well. Ever regal and dignified. His skin was smooth and pale and his hair looked as if it had been kissed by the golden rays of the sun itself. Falcon’s child carried with him the legacy of a house, and the history and hopes of an entire nation.

He listened to Balances without Fault and nods in agreement with the rules. He was here to listen, and to speak when it was needed. Tradition would be the focus of his reasons for being here. Support of tradition and remembrance of ancient ways. His blood ran hot with the memories of a past tens of thousands of years old. A creature of the modern world and yet still firmly grounded in the wisdom of eras ling since passed.

He keeps his eyes forward most of the time. However, when he is finally seated his eyes do drift somewhere to the back. His eyes drawing in to focus on the Strider kin hiding in the back. Pausing to give his own acknowledgement of her presence. His eyes take the time to wander, perhaps linger, and the act brings a slight smile to his lips a smile which might or might not be shared by the both of them. None the less… His eyes were hard pressed to pull themselves away, and in fact he didn’t see any reason to draw them away until the meeting officially started.

[Joey] Joey enters with Hunter and his kinswoman, but once they’re through the door departs their company to sit closer to the rest of the auspice council. A smile is offered to those she recognizes, dim compared to what it used to be, an upward nod to Balance Without Fault, and Lukas.

Once she’s settled, she seeks out Hunter, meets his gaze, and grins.

[Kieran Mondblume] *He looks a little bit intimidated, all things considered, as he walks into the meeting. He finds a place to sit. His shirt is a lovely shade of light purple; his jeans are black. His flip-flops, a lovely shade of maroon. Lukas’ words make his head swivel, and his eyes widen. Food? No… ice water. He slumps slightly, disappointed, as he waits for everything to begin.*

[Balance Without Fault] [Sorry for the confusion – “no drinks here tonight” was spoken by Danny, bartender kid NPC kin! I’ll try to keep all my NPCing in this name.]

[Delilah Marciano] Back of the room, quiet as a dormouse; the Glass Walker makes an appearance. Dark hair gathered up from her shoulders, she sits alone at one of the tables in the back of the room, whichever was closest to the front. The phone in her hand muted as she set it on the table, dressed in dark charcoal pantsuit with red pinstripe. Silvery gaze focused on those around her.

[Kieran Mondblume] ((Ahh hell. *smacks forehead* My bad.))

[Balance Without Fault] When everyone has settled, Balance Without Fault picks up the magic eightball and speaks again.

“Okay, let’s come to order. Some of you might be wondering why this meeting was called. The reason is simple: over the last month, there have been more rumors and murmurs of kin discontent than in the past five years. Furthermore, there’s been a troubling trend toward Kin thinking of themselves as separate and distinct from the Garou when we are all part of the same Nation. I wanted to dispel the rumors, clear the air, set a basic infrastructure down, and move on from tonight as a re-unified force.

“With that in mind, let’s hear from the kin first. What exactly are your concerns or complaints at the moment?”

He tosses the eightball toward the first kin to call for it.

[Adamidas] Adam slips in and, for the time being, keeps her mouth shut. She doesn’t draw attention to herself, or the fact that she left the bathroom with a pop and keeps herself quietly nestled in.

[Balance Without Fault] [For latecomers who missed it, this was BwF’s protocol post —

“Welcome, everyone. Thanks for coming. Here are the rules tonight: one speaker at a time. He or she who holds the magic eight ball,” and he holds this aloft, “speaks. No one else.

“Keep a respectful tone, particularly to those of greater rank. For those of equal rank, the Auspice Council holds precedence over the Tribal Alphas. For kin, those with renown hold precedence over those without.

“In case of dispute, we will not go to challenges because of the mixed crowd. A Philodox will be called upon to mediate. If mediation fails, I am the final arbiter.

“Anyone violating these rules once will be given one warning, and one only. After that, you’re out of the meeting, and your viewpoint will be disregarded. The staff has kindly set up refreshments in the kitchen. If you feel yourself getting hot under the collar, go get a drink and come back when you’re calmer.”]

[Amunet Knezevic] [Dibs, unless anyone is going to claim it?]

[Balance Without Fault] [whoever types fastest, man.]

[Balance Without Fault] [and on that note, since we’re a scene of twenty-seven right now — let’s try to keep posts short and snappy. i know i’m one of the chief offenders here, but i’m really going to try to keep responses to

[Joey] [yeah that’s pretty short!]

[Amunet Knezevic] “Balance Without Fault Rhya.” Deep breath, Ames. “My name is Amunet Knezevic. I am that one that placed the notice on the board, and the one who has been organizing the willing kinfolk. I believe that this in part may be the cause of the perception of discontent. I would like to clear up any confusion, as our intentions may not be as clear as they should be.”

[Balance Without Fault] [okay, i changed my mind — go ahead and call dibs if you have a longer post to type so you don’t lose your chance. but i’m gonna say you have 10 min from the time you call dibs to get it out, just to keep things moving!]

Balance nods. “Let’s hear it.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[She says she’s almost done, it’s a biggie!]]

[Danicka Musil] The Happy Couple — and frankly, they are, however smirkingly saccharine the nomenclature — comes in together, but they leave their more obvious public displays of affection at the door. Danicka is wearing a knee-length gray skirt and knee-high black heels, beneath which are a pair of stockings that extend a little higher than the boots themselves. Her peacoat is doffed when she comes in, hung over the back of a chair no one is using that’s been shoved over by the bar. Underneath is a casual, gauze-thin sweater of seafoam green, laid atop the hint of a camisole. There’s a white applique in some abstract pattern to one side of chest of the sweater, but all of this is just [window] dressing.

Danicka Musil is not the most renowned Kinswoman in Chicago. Not by far. But she is the most renowned Kinfolk here. The Garou, if they ever mention her to each other, if the spirits ever talk about her, don’t talk much about how many fomori she’s killed or that one time she shot a zombie or so forth. She’s known to be brave, to be a Good Kinswoman. Mostly, she’s known to be wise. Granted, when she comes up, it’s hardly even by name. Garou call her Wyrmbreaker-rhya’s mate. And they say that Wyrmbreaker-rhya’s mate is clever, isn’t she? Oh yes, I’ve heard she’s a bit of a bright one.

It’s childish. It’s condescending. But that she is known to be anything at all beyond the mate of an Adren who has not yet given him a child, and that her reputation is solid as a Good Kin is impressive at all. She can’t cast rites, she can’t learn gifts. She can just be… a clever little thing. Good job, Wyrmbreaker. Now stop dicking around and knock her up.

When the magic 8-ball is first offered to the kin, it’s Amunet — rightly so — who reaches for it. Danicka, perhaps there just as a show of support for her comrades, perhaps just because she’s supposed to be there and she’s obedient, turns her eyes towards the Strider she met with last night, her murky green eyes interested. Thoughtful.

[Amunet Knezevic] “My intention is to gather the interested kinfolk in a network that will help the Trueborn, not work against them. Among the first concerns that are being addressed are training and information.”

Her eyes flicker to Sarita, then back to Balance. “It is necessary for us to be able to contact one another easily, not only in emergencies but in everyday circumstances where one of us may need another’s expertise. One of the first projects will be a listing of the kin and their contact information. This will be heavily guarded, not because I don’t want the information to be accessible but because I understand the danger of this type of thing getting into the wrong hands. Cordelia and Jackson have volunteered to begin this process, and to make sure that the information is secure.”

Our second focus is going to be self defense training. We are human, at the end of the day. We can’t count on the Trueborn to be our protectors when they have a war to fight. Carter has extensive self defense training, and he has offered to run a boot camp of sorts for those who are interested. As with everything that we are working toward, it will be voluntary. I don’t want to force any kin to join us, or accept any sort of training except for the third focus.”

She stops for breath. “I would like to see every kin trained in basic first aid. This accomplishes two purposes. Should any of us be injured, there will likely be someone close by to help. Again, we are human. We don’t heal ourselves, and we are out in the world. The dangers that we face come not only from our enemies, but from the people that we are surrounded with every day.

I’ve seen an amazing number of Trueborn that are more than willing to step up and heal a kin that is injured. This is honorable, but wasteful. Again, we are at war. We could be attacked at any time, and should that happen, which of the kin would be responsible for sapping a Trueborn’s gnosis by being healed out of panic or unnecessarily. Prepared kin are kin that are not a drain on the Nation’s resources.”

Her fingers run in her hair nervously, and she licks her bottom lip before continuing. “I’ve been in a Sept that was attacked. I have a clearer understanding of what happens than some of the kin do. I watched kin die, because no one was able to triage them. I watched kin die, because they had all become complacent and lazy and spoiled by well meaning Trueborn. I have friends here. I don’t want to see the same thing happen again. That is why I’ve made this move. That is why these three goals are my first”

[Balance Without Fault] “That’s all well and good,” Balance replies as the eightball comes back to him, “and I’m glad to hear you’re trying to organize the kin. See to it that the Warder has a list of these kin and contacts as well. Areas of specialization, too, if possible. We had something like that for a while, but the parties responsible for its maintenance drifted off.

“Regarding self defense and basic first aid — that sounds like a wise investment. We’ve got a few kin who are accomplished physicians. You might want to get their input. As for self defense, Imogen Slaughter’s known to be a crack shot. Izzy Montoya and Derek Anderson are both with the police; surely they know how to handle a gun as well. You might want to seek their services as well.

“But all that aside — Amunet, you’ve told me everything that’s working. Or that you want to be working, at least. I’m asking why I keep hearing murmurs of discontent.”

[Amunet Knezevic] “Some of the kin that have shown interest are not content, Rhya. Trueborn have become accustomed to dictating to us, and the kin have become accustomed to allowing it. Not only here, but other places where several of the new kin have come from, bringing their biases with them. This has bred discontent. I am in no way suggesting that we should be treated as equals. The fact is that we are not. I would suggest though that we are kept informed, so that when decisions are made and passed down, they do not seem arbitrary and dictatorial. Your kin are willing to work together with the Trueborn, Rhya. We just need a path to follow.”

[Balance Without Fault] Balance Without Fault considers Amunet a moment. Then he sweeps a glance around the room.

“I don’t want to put you under a microscope this early in the night, Amunet.” Maybe that’s a joke. The half-smile says it is. He raises his voice, “Let’s hear from someone other than Amunet. Kinfolk of Maelstrom, this might be one of the few or only times in your life that the Elder Council and the Tribal Alphas of an entire Sept are gathered, silent, with open ears — waiting to hear from you.

“If you’ve got issues, bring them forward.”

[Jackson Montgomery] [[DIBS!]]

[Izzy Montoya] She hadn’t intended to talk. In fact, she hadn’t intended to make a sound at all, but at that, she snorts. Audibly. But that is all, as she starts the ritual search through her pockets for her cigarettes and lighter. she finds both – but doesn’t put them to use other than to keep her hands busy.

After all – smoking inside is against the law.

[Jackson Montgomery] He stands, perhaps unexpectedly, and goes to claim the magic 8-Ball. “I think, if I can speak to this, that a lot of the reported discontent is simple due to the fact that some of the initial ideas being brainstormed are coming out and they aren’t even formalized yet. And some Garou have been volunteering their involvement…which is great. There’s been an impression that this is quickly becoming Garou vs. kinfolk, and that’s not the case.

“The thing is, when a lot of Garou get heavily involved in this, even in the planning stage, it belies the fact that it goes right back to the idea that the kinfolk are relying on the Garou instead of standing on their own. I’ve been talking a lot with Amunet about this, and we’ve come up with some good ideas. And at no point are we trying to push this into two separate factions. But the old saying goes, too many cooks spoil the soup, and there are a lot of kinfolk even as it is with very different viewpoints. We absolutely plan to make this a thing where we’re all involved in the same mission, but we need an actual plan in place for what we’re doing before we start implementing that and integrating it with the Garou side.”

[Balance Without Fault] Balance Without Fault’s eyes swing immediately to Izzy. When he gets the eightball back, he tosses it toward her.

“You sounded like you wanted to be heard, Izzy. Let’s hear it.”

[August Grant] August shifted in her chair. It was slightly uncomfortable for her to sit in the same position for too long these days. A slender hand rubbed at the side of her belly – perhaps where a persistent foot was intent on kicking her. She didn’t say anything.

No matter the extent of her past issues with this Sept.. in her mind, all were resolved as well as they could be at the moment. And, given that her cheating, lying, deadbeat, no good, s-o-b of a former mate had fled, she was a happy camper. Her gaze did shift to her tribesmate as he stood, however.

[Nash] Oh crap when did he get here.

Nash, who most here don’t recognize but for the breeding that pegs him as one of Fenris’s Kin, slips in quietly as Amy is discussing her desire to see Kinfolk trained in first aid. He works his way around the room to stand near Kora and tries to get his happy ass caught up while his player does paperwork.

[Kieran Mondblume] *He watches, back and forth. From Amy, to Jackson, and then to Izzy. Waiting, really, curious about all of this.*

[Izzy Montoya] She arches a brow, ups both her cigarettes and lighter into one hand and still catches the 8ball with a negligent ease. There are some things that become inherrant when one works in a male dominated workplace – like catching random objects being thrown at her.

She waits a moment, then two. She doesn’t look to Kora for permission as some might. She looks to no one – which is not unexpected from anyone that knows her in anyway at all. She is, and always will be, her own person. He wants to hear it. So he does.

“It’s bullshit. You sit there and say you want to hear, you want to fuckin’ listen, and it’s all fuckin’ bullshit. Not a one of you give two shits about what we do or don’t do, unless it directly involves you. Not a one gives two shits about what we might have to do for you in our jobs, what we might have to compromise in order to save your fuckin’ asses in a world you think you’re above – even while declaring you want to fuckin’ save it. Not a one of you.. not even Kora, whom I’ve grown to respect, did shit all when I was beat by one of you, imprisoned here of all fuckin’ places, and sent to work with injuries so severe that half my department wanted to come after whoever had fucked me up with guns blazing. Not a one of you gives two fuckin’ shits – and this is all a fuckin’ sham.”

He hears it. Both barrels.

She points at Amy. “That bitch has been lookin to get her goose cooked since she got here. And the latest scheme? Good god. she’s gonna get us all fuckin’ killed. And likely not by the enemy. Discontent.” she snorts again. “I won’t fuckin talk for anyone else – and don’t you dare speak for me either, I can get my ass beat all by myself – it doesn’t matter what you say here. In the end – you all will do what you want, and I’ll do my fuckin job just as I always have, and do a goddamn good job of it. I’ll cover my ass, your ass, everyone’s ass who I can manage to cover – but don’t expect me to believe that – for one fuckin second – you give a good goddamn what happens in the world we have to travel through every goddamn day. You don’t. You haven’t yet – and one night won’t make it so.”

To her credit though – not once does she raise her voice. If anything.. she sounds… tired.

[Danicka Musil] [Dibs!]

[Balance Without Fault] “Keep your tone respectful,” Balance says evenly. “That’s your only warning.”

That’s all he says for now. He lobs the eightball toward Danicka.

[Gina McClaren] *Restless as Striders were wont to be, Gina hops down from her stool, sashays into the kitchen, and fetches herself a couple of deep-fried wontons filed with hazelnut chocolate and cream cheese.
She pads back into the room midway through the detective’s speech, and settles on her stool once more.

Izzy finishes up, and Gina’s expression darkens a moment.

Then the detective has to use those finely honed reflexes again in short order. As a pikey whistles sharply then overhand tosses a wonton to the weary Fenris kin. Whether in agreement or simply in a bid to get her to cram it – only the guttersnipe herself knows.*

[Nash] Nash claps a few times after Izzy finishes. Not a purposefully sarcastic Slow Clap, but it is a bit on the slow side anyway. He seems to be favoring his right wrist. It lasts a few seconds, and then he stops at the Grand Elder’s warning to keep a respectful tone.

[Hunter] Holden wanders through the room to stand next to Nash and the other Fenrir. He gives a nod to the equally tall man from the north [south] along with a grin of approval.

[Hunter] [OOPS]

[Izzy Montoya] She catches the wonton. Easily.

And manages not to point out that she WAS respectful. For her.

[Danicka Musil] Everyone in the room is free to judge according to their own perspectives what it says about Danicka that when Balance Without Fault lobs the 8-ball at her, she doesn’t even try to catch it. She actually flinches somewhat out of the way, and it’s Lukas who snatches the thing out of the air, handing it to her. Some will call her oblivious that she doesn’t seem chagrined or embarrassed as she takes it from him. She’s a slender sort, not remotely athletic from the look of her.

Sometimes Garou hear of what she’s done to minions of the Wyrm, see her, say, Her?

Holding the ball in cupped palms, she speaks up for the first time, her tone clear and level. She addresses Balance Without Fault. “A lot of what Detective Montoya just said is true. Amunet, as well. We aren’t… like you,” she says, though in a tone that suggests even she realizes how weak that statement is, how far it falls from encompassing the truth. “No matter how much we care about our families, about the world we live in, or about the war — and I think all of us do care, though to wildly different degrees and in different ways — we don’t form ourselves naturally into packs. We are not asked to give everything, a hundred percent, to fighting this war. For Garou, the war is everything. Anything else is marginalized, because it has to be.

“For Kinfolk,” she goes on, “it’s the opposite. We live our lives. I go to school, Detective Montoya goes to the precinct, August feeds and diapers her children, Gina dances, we all… have a life. The war, however important it is to us individually, often comes as an intrusion to the rest of who we are and what we do.”

Danicka quiets for a small pause, clears her throat, but doesn’t give up the 8-ball. “Sometimes when we get hurt, Garou come running. Sometimes they don’t. Sometimes when there’s a fight on our doorstep, we have to fight it because there’s no way to run fast enough. Other times we have to give it up as though that’s the natural, only course of action.” Another beat, this one for effect more than to breathe. “The truth of what Detective Montoya says is this: most, if not all Garou, spend the majority of their time focused on things that have nothing to do with us. We are expected to carry on by ourselves without them, unless they show up. And if they do show up, usually without warning and sometimes even without need, we are expected to drop everything to obey them.

“-Rhya, all of us have our own prejudices and biases and differing levels of committment — as well as angst. All of us care. But the discontent comes when we are kept to the sides all of the time, then told to shut up and submit the moment a garou ten or twenty years our junior shows up and acts like they’re our protector. I think what Amunet and her alliance are trying to do is to increase our involvement so that at least the marginalization is lessened. But the discontent is already there. The frustration. The affront, frankly.”

She stops there. She could go on. But she’s talked a great deal, and she silences for now.

[Bridget Geroux] [Dibs]

[Danicka Musil] [Other times we have to give it up and let the Garou fight for us as though that’s the natural, only course of action. GAH!]

[Kora] Nash comes in; the Skald gives him a side glance. It lingers a long moment longer than it otherwise might; then her attention is back on the center of the room. The thin cotton of her extra-long tunic pulls over her shoulders, muscles bunching with a subtle tension, mostly withheld. Her long braid swings down the dip of her spine. A faint lift of her chin, watching Holden weave through the room to join the tribe; a brief glance in Gina’s direction follows after, before her attention returns to the center of the room, following the movement of the eight-ball to Danicka. Once, she shifts positions. Widens her stance, leans further back, relieving some of the unending pressure on her spine. Uncrosses and recrosses her arms.

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget sighs when it comes around her direction, careful to look at the eight ball when she holds it up. “Balance Without Fault Rhya, thank you for putting it in the light that we are all a part of the Nation. My name is Bridget Geroux. I know that every Sept is different, and I don’t have any expectations, but the Sept I am from is much smaller. We know each other well, and there is structure. Here, I don’t see the unity. I see reluctance, pain, anguish, and I see anger and pride disconnecting us from one another. Kin from kin, kin from tribesmen… and I wouldn’t presume to understand what goes on among Garou, but if that same disconnect exists on that level… it worries me.”

“And despite the recent bonding efforts to organize the kinfolk, I see a disconnect there as well. It’s a great idea, a great application, a wise and honorable action, but even with the application, I notice those same destructive traits. Just last week, I noticed a separation when a well-meaning Garou was not trying to interfere, but possibly trying to bridge gaps between Garou and kinfolk within Amunet’s… organization, fellowship. Whatever it will be called. And the way she jealously guards it and some others have just jumped on without gauging the situation seems too much like a Jonestown situation to me.”

Bridget takes a breath, exercising great efforts not to swear or fidget. “Maybe this is my own experience, but since I’ve moved here I have never felt more disconnected to my tribe despite my attempts to bridge gaps. At what point should I just go about my business, despite everything my father taught me? I’m… going to open myself up here and speak as truly as I possibly can, but it hurts me to have such a tentative relationship with the other Fianna.”

“This is all perhaps touching on the path Amunet spoke of, but I wouldn’t presume to speak for anyone but myself. I’m not good with a gun or first aid, but I know how to survive in the wilderness with nothing… I know how to work crowds, to work a public social setting. I know I’m not useless, but I feel that way when it comes to the Nation when my offers and talents are dismissed so quickly and without regard to its usefulness. I know how to stand well enough on my own, and I’ve done as much as I can to contribute… but I feel as if there is no point when I’m told to stay inside, discouraged from doing what I’m good at, and still held at such a distance. It’s all too condescending.”

Bridget looks to Izzy now, then sighs. “In a lot of ways, I feel exactly like no one gives a damn whether or not we all rot, what we have to go through or put up with and barely even a hint of recognition, if any of that even matters. I feel like many of us are just a bunch of wild things kept in guilded cages. If you keep any living thing from doing what it’s supposed to do, that’s not a life worth living. I don’t know what else to do but be discontent when I’m expected to stay out of the woods, don’t go make music or connections, don’t spend so much time out in the world doing what I do. I can follow orders, do what needs to be done, but I’m not a machine.”

[Balance Without Fault] [dibs!]

[Balance Without Fault] “I want to take a moment to clarify the purpose of this meeting.

“Jackson, I heard you about needing to get the kin coalition in order before plugging it into the grander framework of the Nation. I agree. Bridget, Izzy, I’ve heard from you both that the way things are going in the coalition are not optimal at the moment. But we’re not here to discuss the kinfolk coalition alone. We should address it more thoroughly, and we will — in a moment.

“We’re not here to discuss how Garou interface with the world, either, Izzy. We’re not here to change the way Garou and kin interact, because that — as Danicka points out — has been set for thousands of years. As you yourself have pointed out, it won’t change in a night.

“As much as you may feel downtrodden and unappreciated, realize that every last Garou in this room, on this planet, will die before age thirty. And they give this sacrifice so that you have a human world to interface in, just as you sacrifice your job and career and human life to support these Garou. The sacrifice goes both ways. And while you might not like it, we are in the end Gaia’s army. There is a ranking order, and it is dictated, ultimately, by our renown.

“But I digress. What we can do, what I want to do here tonight — specifically, without speaking in broad terms and vagueries — is to address points of discontent amongst the kin. I have specific incidents in my mind that I want to discuss, but I want to hear from the kin first.

“If nothing else, no matter how she brought it up — Izzy has noted some sources of discontent for herself. For that, I thank you, Detective Montoya.

“She Who Offers Sorrow, your kinfolk has raised an complaint about the way she’s been treated in the past. She says she’s been beaten and unfairly imprisoned. See to her concerns. If you decide her past punishment was just, then so be it. If it was unjust, make amends as you best see fit.

“Before we move on to other topics, are there any other specific grievances the kin wish to bring forth?”

[Rain McKellar] [Dibs, please!]

[Danicka Musil] Her eyes flick to the Grand Elder when he brings her up, gives at least one interpretation of what she said. She doesn’t ask for the 8-ball again though.

[Balance Without Fault] [erp. “will MOST LIKELY die before age thirty.” seeing as how BWF is like… 45.]

[Carter Roth] [Dibs after Rain]

[Jackson Montgomery] [[“You’re all gonna die before 30…except me. For I am Elite.”]]

[August Grant] {Very short dibs after Rain + Carter}

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Sarita could be accused, often, of not taking things seriously enough. When your deed name is “Echoes of Laughter,” it’s a natural course of people’s thoughts on how you will react. She’s stayed quiet here, sitting near her Alpha and watching…listening. She doesn’t give anyone a particularly strong reaction when they speak. Amy gets a slight smile; Izzy a little frown. The others, she remains even-tempered, thoughtful.

The Strider is doing her best to listen and learn. She’s not even tapping her toe to some sort of tacky dance pop crap.

[Rain McKellar] The girl who rises to claim the magic eight ball next has nothing in her blood that calls out to her Tribe. She has no renown among them. Cloistered as she is with the rest of Unicorn’s kin, this gives some suggestion as to her allegiances.

Catching the eight-ball is only part of the struggle, here. And before she addresses the Grand Elder, her glance slides sideways to the Fenrir Jarl. Her shoulders square, and she calms herself a bit.

“Mr. Grand Elder, sir,” she begins, and her voice rises easily above the gathering. Unexpectedly warm. Captivating, it calls attention to her in ways that might surprise them.

“My name is Rain McKellar, and before I was kin to Unicorn’s chosen, I was Lost.” She says this plainly. “The places I have been treated their kinfolk much differently than here, and I appreciate that you have called us together and allowed us to air our concerns.

“I have no complaints about how I have been treated by my Tribe, nor by the pack that I live with. My Family has been good to me, perhaps better than they should have been by some of what others have said tonight. If I can help in any way, so that kindness and shelter can be extended to others, please let me know.”

Here she swallows and looks down at the eight ball for a moment.

“If I have any complaint it is that, in the intention of being helpful or showing their concern, some True offer up conflicting information. I am concerned about the thing that is hunting Kinfolk. I would like to know, plainly put, what best I should do to protect myself and to help your war efforts. If this has already been communicated to the Tribal and pack Alphas, then I will seek answers with Mr. Roman or Miss Kora.”

She walks across the circle to hand back the eight-ball.

“Thank you for your time, sirs and madams.”

And then Rain retakes her seat.

[Wyrmbreaker] [Quick dibs. And sorry, Lukas is pulling rank to get it for a sec!]

[Wyrmbreaker] Wyrmbreaker, who has thus far sat quietly except to catch the ball for Danicka, raises his hand after Rain speaks. The eightball comes his way.

“I can answer that for you, Rain. The specifics of what kin should be doing is up to each Tribal Alpha. Obey whatever order they give you. As a general rule, I’d strongly suggest getting to a place where you’re protected by the Garou of your tribe. If there’s no such place available to you, come to the Brotherhood.

“As far as I’m concerned, you can chance it on your own if you really don’t want to move. But I don’t suggest it.”

Carter’s hand is up. Lukas tosses the eightball his way.

[Bridget Geroux] Seeing as her concern over being told specifically not to do what it is she does, what she’s good at, was basically glossed over, Bridget goes and gets herself something to eat. She needs to gather her thoughts for a second, fidget as she needs to with all the Rage in the room, before the Fianna kin can take her seat again. There’s a lot to think over.

[Carter Roth] Carter had had quite enough at this point. If no one would take up that magic 8 ball and speak the voice of the malcontent then he would. He strode forward taking the eight ball for himself and turned to face the garou who were gathered all powerful, all alpha’s or elder’s in their right and he held the eight ball in one heavy hand as he spoke.

“I refuse to be ruled by those who will not see me as their equal.” He lets those few treasonous words sink in as he looks across the garou, his eyes falling upon kin in equal measure. “In many places, by many of your kind we are treated like Chattel, little more then servants waiting to be used. I will not argue that here I have seen generous activity that would enrage the masters of these places for that you should be praised. But it is not enough.” He shakes his head slowly.

“Unlike the detective, who will stand and do her duty even as she knows your disregard for the kin who work tirelessly beneath your gaze. I will not, not without equality.” He pauses. “Without it, we are susceptible to every monster of your kind, every garou who believes we ARE nothing but here to serve your whim. Tell me why we should accept our lot as it stands, tell me how it makes sense that such actions continue unabated against those you call your allies, your lovers, your friends. Is an ally told to be silent because you do not like his tone? Do you force a friend to become the mate of another simply because of what lies within their veins?” He lets that settle there, lets it hang, many knew of such instances, quite often they were regular occurances.

He takes another moment to look about. “We are all capable, we are all skilled in our own ways. But we are marginalized, we are shunted aside till we are expected to serve and we will hold our tongues and be greatful for it. I will not.” He looks at Balance Without Fault. “You have said yourself that these things will not change, that they have existed for thousands of years, change it, if you hold to any future that means something for all of us…change it. You wished to hear of discontent, there it lies.”

Carter lets the 8 ball go then and he takes his place against the wall once more. His gaze even and suspicious as it was when he first stepped forward.

[Matthieu] [If I can I’d like to call Dibs after umm August!]

[Kieran Mondblume] *He is waiting, listening to all of the opinions, and he is starting to look a little concerned.*

[Nash] [Dibs are for the weak! (I’m sorry!)]

Nash doesn’t bother with the eightball. When he speaks, after Lukas and Carter have gone, he has a heavy Southern drawl. His voice isn’t terribly loud, and like Izzy, he sounds tired.

“Kinda telling, ain’t it?” he asks. “You got two Kin waiting to talk but a Trueborn can just butt on in?”

[Balance Without Fault] [BWF takes the eightball!]

[Izzy Montoya] She says nothing more – but she does step to the side and light up that cigarette after all. Someone can call the cops if they’ve got a problem with it.

[Amunet Knezevic] “Because we are NOT equal!” She snaps it, then falls instantly silent again.

[August Grant] August swallows. Did she really.. really want to go after that? Geezus christ – she was rather surprised when there wasn’t fur flying.

Once the magic-8 ball was gently -passed- in her direction, the young woman stood. She cleared her throat just a little, trying to work up the courage to speak in a room full of this many important people. She never quite looked the Elder in the eyes, but.. was looking somewhat towards him, maybe at his feet. {oooh.. where’d you get those shoes?}

“Rhya.. s.. since you wanted to know about the discontent from us.. I figured I should mention mine. My mate, up and left me for another, knowing full well I was already carrying a second child for this nation. His child. He left with me with no one to protect me and my cub. The mere fact that no one at the time thought this a grevious act was insulting. It bred resentment.. and.. until I found allies within my tribe.. ” she motioned to those seated near by, “I wasn’t at all content. Things have resolved at this point and I am fine with my lot in life. But things like that – ignoring these big giant world tearing apart events – is going to drive a wedge between us.”

A brief pause. “That is all.. thank you for your time..” A hand smoothed her sweater over her belly and she again took her seat, passing on the ball.

[Starla Navarro] Starla’s head snaps up, she turns and twists in her seat to stare right at Amunet, her eyes narrowing on the kin that snaps out her words. The corners of her mouth flatten into a thin line as she glares at her.

[Balance Without Fault] [this comes before August — sorry, but BWF would immediately react!]

Balance Without Fault snaps his fingers for the eightball. He confers briefly with Kora, gets a name, speaks.

“Stick to protocol, Nash. You too, Amunet. Next time you two step out of line, you’re out.

“In case you missed it the first time around: don’t speak without the eightball. Rank and renown takes precedence. In the event that rank is equal, the Auspice Council takes precedence over Tribal Alphas, who take precedence over the Garou, who take precedence over the kin.

“And I’m sorry, Carter, but there is no equality in the Nation. We are not a democracy.”

It passes on to August.

[August Grant] {Damn, my bad – my screen didn’t refresh. Augusts posts AFTER BWFs}

[Gina McClaren] *Gina makes a noise in her throat thats something along the lines of a pissed off gurgle. Fingers scraping through her hair and across her temples as her head falls backwards in utter frustration. Talon hands coming away from her scalp and settling on the bar with some force. *

[Danicka Musil] [Dibs, when… okay I’m not sure what the list is for dibs, but! Put me on it!]

[Delilah Marciano] Delilah eases out of the chair she sat in, her hand drops to the phone sitting on the table, picking it up and stares down at the screen for a brief second, and then tucks it away inside the inner breast pocket of her suit jacket. She is tall, only because of the advantage point her heels provide her, she stands with shoulders squared back and chin tilted up.

The woman doesn’t exactly command authority, but there is a coolness in her demeanor. A calm, collected disposition that expresses patience, clearly her gesture to stand, instead of sit idly and listen meant she had something to say. She is an unknown face, a stranger to the kin that have served this sept in the past and now in the present.

[Calling DIBS!]

[Rain McKellar] Rain’s arms are crossed low over her middle. Her expression is somewhat anxious, but when she looks up to August as the other Gaian speaks it is with as much support as she can muster in this tense environment.

[Carter Roth] Carter frowns deeply at Balance Without Faults words and he shakes his head, an angry look flitting behind his eyes.

[Balance Without Fault] — and the eightball comes back to Balance.

“I’m sorry to hear you’ve been so ill-used by your former mate, August. Tell us the name of this Garou so that we all know his dishonor.”

The eightball goes back to August.

[Dibs list is currently: August, Matthieu, Danicka, Delilah.]

[August Grant] “Paul Kellogg. He seems to have .. left..” She’d rather use the word fled.. “the city.” And once again, the eight ball is passed on.

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget stands at the doorway, listening to the conversation while munching on part of a sandwich. The tightness to her muscles and the smirk on her face expresses her discontent with the line of conversation. She takes a glass of ice water over to Carter and leans against his side. She offers the frigid beverage to the other kin, the corners of her mouth turning in a slight smile, an expression that simply says: here.

[Kora] Kora listens as Rain says her piece; her arms tighten when Balance Without Fault directs her to see to Izzy’s complaint. The look she gives the Grand Elder is direct, her expression ironic, but not wry. When Carter speaks, the heavily pregnant Fenrir audibly rolls her eyes (seriously, Nash can [i]hear/i] it). She flashes him a look when he speaks up. Except for the obvious tension, the expression is quiet, animal, unreadable.

[Starla Navarro] Starla clucks her tongue against the roof of her mouth, shaking her head. She looks over her should at Kora, catching the eye-rolling expression of the Jarl. She turns back in her seat, shifting closer to Rain and draws a comforting arm around the kin’s shoulders, hugging her.

[Jackson Montgomery] [[Add Jackson in after Delilah]]

[Derek Anderson] Derek listened, standing near Rain, August and Jackson. He owuld have loved to stand with people from his tribe but Sasha and Katherine weren’t there, Gabriel wasn’t invited and he didn’t rally knewMatthieu except glimpsing at him at the loft the other night.

He looked relax, hands in his pockets. He had nothing to say about all this really. He has been well treated by his Tribe, other Garou and kinfolks he has met. Well Remy was a jerk but even then, it went pretty ok when he met him. He knew some people had problems with Garou, that some had bad experiences in the past. He wasn’t one of them. Maybe it’ll come, maybe he’ll be like Izzy or maybe not. But for now, his life was good.Maybe he didn’t need much, or maybe it was his upbringing, butr he was..ok with the way things were.

[Joey] When the meeting first came to order, Joey sat looking slightly away from the circle, her head moving nearly imperceptibly to the beat of some rhythm in her head. As soon as the eight ball started going around, though, her attention was on the people in the room, her dark eyes moving from speaker to speaker. For the most part, she just watches, listening attentively. She’s silent, even when Izzy speaks up about her punishment, though there’s a tension to her brow, a slight downward turn to the corners of her mouth. The frown doesn’t leave her face, in fact worsens, especially when August speaks up, the kinswoman so obviously pregnant. Joey knew her mate, knew him for the filthy son of a bitch he could be, and not for the wisdom he supposedly held in the Nation. The fact that he would abandon his mate was hardly surprising to her, but infuriating. Wasn’t August the girl he’d once mistaken Joey for? What a prick.

[Carter Roth] Carter takes that glass with a nod to Bridget as great a thanks as he could give at the moment, and sips it, still looking displeased but for now…silent.

[Matthieu] When the 8ball comes his way he stands in his usual regal posture before kin as well as his peers. He takes the time to acknowledge all who choose to look at him with a smile before speaking up and addressing the others present.

“I hear kin speaking about unity, and about working together and about organization. So allow me to speak up and please do hear what I have to say.”

“Harrier’s Grace was founded under the idea that the Mortal world is an important one which we garou have little direct grasp upon. In the heart of a city as large as Chicago we stand in an awkward position where mundane threats could see us utterly destroyed without the means to address them.”

He takes the time to look over faces one by one.

“You wish to take part in the nation. You wish to take an active role in the pursuits of your own people then now is your chance. Harrier’s Grace was founded specifically with the Kin in mind and with time and your assistance we should like to see that all are both cared for, as well as allowed to take an active role in this nation’s happenings. We need eyes and ears, additionally we need faces and talented minds.”

“The Mundane World is your world and if “We” the Garou are to control it we need our kin to stand with it. So any who stand ready to take an active role in a pack who will share in it’s endeavours with all Garou and Kin who take part please step forth after this meeting.”He smiles a little to everyone present.

“I do not wish this to be a recruiting event for a pack but what I am hearing is that Kin would like a chance to take a more active role in their society. This is what Harrier’s Grace was formed with the intention of seeing through. So it remains relevant to the situation.”

He then looks around at the others involved.

“We are one nation, we cannot exist without the whole of that nation working in unison. Our kin are our support network, our homes, and our families. Whatever one feels of their unique and individual position within this nation know now that we are not oblivious to the plight of our kin. We live and die with the hope that our people will remember us and more than anything our people are our kin.”

“Perhaps we do not always show the proper deference or respect but we have a very difficult job.”He then turns his attention to Izzy.”When our kin stand and denounce us as if we have somehow broken some sacred vow it comes as a potent and dangerous blow. There are warriors in their graves at this very moment who have died defending the kin of this sept. I also promise you right now that if you were in danger there are at least one or two garou in this room alone who would stupidly rush off to their own deaths in order to rescue you. Remember this when you find yourself doubing the importance our kin hold to us.”

“In the end we ask of our kin nothing more or less than we ask of ourselves.”He says with a hint of a smile back at the kin.”In the end we must all stand ready to give everything for this nation if that is what we must. That cannot be negociated it simply must be.”

[Balance Without Fault] [Current dibs list: Danicka, Delilah, Jackson]

[Kora] (dibs!)

[Balance Without Fault] [and for the record – applying a -2 honor hit to Paul’s sheet for getting publicly denounced before auspice and tribal councils, plus half the city’s kin, reduced him to subcliath status. normally i wouldn’t announce minor renown tweaks, but in this case it’s a fairly substantial change in how other chars would perceive him.]

[Balance Without Fault] […if, y’know, the char ever gets reactivated *LOL*]

[Balance Without Fault] [last OOC note! if your character holds precedence and wants to use it, make a note in your dibs-calling so i don’t have to ask individually!]

[Danicka Musil] [I’m almost there! Sorry for the wait!]

[Danicka Musil] It’s as though she had mental notes. Danicka gets the 8-ball after the Galliard Elder and speaks up. Directly, in fact, to Carter Roth.

“I know what you can do,” she says plainly, and simply. Maybe even gently, though her voice is levelled directly at him in public. “I also know, and I am the only person currently in this room who knows as well as you do, what it means to be raised as a Kin of Thunder.

“The Garou will never see you as their equal. You may be able to heal with a touch, but you will never be able to fight as well as they can. You will never know what it is like to enter a new body and hunt on all fours. You cannot cross between worlds at will. You will never share a full measure of their power, and so you will never be seen as their equal.” She pauses a moment. “You say you will not work for the Nation without equality. You will never get it. And in this way — knowing what the stakes are, knowing what we all stand to lose — you are more selfish and dishonorable than any Kinfolk in this room.

“Even in human government, if you ally insults you and will not yield, will not compromise, those alliances end, often bloodily. So too will your connection to the Garou you want to treat you as an equal. Work with them or work alone, but do not get in their way or you will be cut down. We aren’t fools, Mr. Roth, not raised in our tribe. Amunet is trying to find a way to decrease our marginalization. And if you want to be involved, at some point you will have to submit to another’s leadership — and it might be Kin, but ultimately it will be to the Garou. Suck it up or get out of the way.”

A pause. She looks at Amunet. “You do guard the alliance jealously, Amunet. Bridget is right about that. You seemed secretive even to me, when I tried to show you nothing but support and interest. You need to work on that attitude, or all your efforts are going to be in vain. When you come to this meeting and then break the rules, you don’t show yourself as a very good leader for Kinfolk, much less someone the Garou might listen to. I want this to work. By god, believe me, I want this to work. But the Kinfolk have to grow up. We all have suffered, but not a thing is going to get done til we all get over it for the sake of the greater good. And those of you who can’t do that, whose angst and baggage is too much to let go of, I don’t even know why you bothered to show up.”

She takes a deep breath and exhales it slowly. “The last attempt at a coalition of kinfolk failed because the Kin involved wanted it to be some kind of perfectly equal democracy, and that will. Not. Work. Even Garou have to follow orders they don’t agree with sometimes. We do too, if we want to be of any real use at all.”

[Balance Without Fault] [delilah, jackson, kora, and then BWF is retaking the ball!]

[Kora] (drop Kora from the list, pls!)

[Carter Roth] Carter meets Danika’s gaze and he shakes his head at the woman. Before flipping her the bird, he might not have the 8 ball, so he won’t speak, but the message is clear enough.

[Delilah Marciano] When the 8 ball finds its way into the Glass Walker’s hands, she holds it up, gives it a good hard shake. She stares at the rubber triangle for a second; the curve of her generous mouth etches into a thinly veiled frown.

“Will this end well?” Delilah asks the ball, “Maybe.”

She turns her eyes up to meet the Grand Elder’s gaze for second, tilting her head to watch the rest of the room. “This, esteemed rhya, is the breeding ground for the discontent. You ask us for our opinions, you tell us to lay our grievances out into the open, so that we may be heard, so we may have a voice…”

A beat, her body shifts, rolls the plastic ball between her hands, “What is this all for? To what purpose will listening to our bitching serve you, in your judgment of us? They are unhappy, they expressed this, and yet, it will not change. We all know this – you said it yourself, it’s not a democracy.”

She shakes her head slowly, “Amunet is trying to organize an alliance, it has been said by Ms. Musil, it will not work. There is no organization, this is like trying to herd cats, they won’t cooperate without first laying a foundation. Training kinfolk in self-defense and first-aid will do very little against a monster breathing down their necks. If the Wyrm wants to kill us, it will do so.”

“The best efforts of the kin, if they wish to come together and organize, is to take a step away from the front lines, and work behind the scenes as we are meant to do. With our mortal influences, our skills, and our connections. We are the first line of defense in covering up the messes that the Garou like to make in the mundane world.”

With that, she shrugs her shoulders and hands the ball off to the next person that so desires it.

[Kora] (change my mind still keeping dibs!)

[Danicka Musil] Carter flips Danicka off. She shrugs at him and gestures to Danny that she’d like an ice water.

[Balance Without Fault] [bwf takes the ball!]

[Izzy Montoya] She looks around and finally grabs a glass of ice water, and taps her ashes into it. It’ll do for now. It also serves to keep her expression hidden for a moment.

It’s likely a good thing.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Did he cut or did I lose my turn? 🙂 ]]

[Holden] [cutteR!]

[Balance Without Fault] [he totally cut.]

“First and last strike for you, Mr. Roth.”

Then, to Delilah:

“I was actually about to address that. I’ve got a few things on my agenda tonight, and we’re still on number one. I’d like to hear specific concerns from kin first and settle them as I can — so frankly, Garou and kin of Maelstrom, we’re starting to get a little off topic with all the philosophy.

“After that, I’ve got two incidents I want to go over. After that, I want to discuss and settle certain issues with the coalition itself.

“Let’s get back to the kin. Specific concerns, bring them forth.”

— and on to Jackson.

[Gina McClaren] *Gina’s heard enough, and she who had a voice designed – accent and all – for other’s pleasure in her speaking – had nothing nice to say. So like her sweet pikey mother had told her with a rap of knuckles across teeth –

“Effen ye’ve naethen nice tae say, fer christs sakes jes shut yer fookin crumbhole.”

She moves towards the kitchens, bumping past the folk in the door with a low sung “Oot the road please” – before moving to fuss with the food there, warming what had grown cold, cooling what had grown warm . Taking a hefty slug from a dented flask drawn deep from the V of dark cleavage. Liquor finally offered to Bridget and Carter in turn.*

[Carter Roth] Carter grimaces at Balance without Fault and shakes his head at the man, he does not however flip the man the bird. He simply looks to Bridget who was standing by his side looked back to Balance, and dropped his water letting it clatter to the floor loudly, maybe even shatter. He looked around at his fellow kinsman, all who had come here with the understanding that they would be free to speak…obviously that was not the case.

Before he turned and walked out a brief nod given to Gina and her alcohol.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] He takes the 8-Ball with a respectful nod. Yes, he is a good kin. Mostly.

“I had one more concern to bring up, Rhyas. It seems like…and I don’t think this is an endemic issue, but I’ve seen it a couple times now…some Garou try to instruct kin who…well, really shouldn’t be. And I know people may wonder what right I have to say that. But I grew up in a family that was blessed. Both of my siblings were Garou. My father was an Ahroun. I like to think I know a fair amount, though not everything, about certain matters. I won’t give a ton of examples…but one I specifically recall is that a kin, new to our city and rather wet behind the ears, was witness to a Thrall frenzy that took place here. I was present and got the kin to safety…after I left, said kin was told by a Garou that in case of a frenzy, playing dead was a good idea. As if a Garou who was in frenzy, especially Thrall frenzy, would just leave them alone if they were lying prone and pretending to be dead.”

He pauses, trying to figure out how to word this without seeming disrespectful. “To be honest, I was dumbstruck when the kin told me this. It’s…really bad advice, to say the least. I’ve passed it on to Roman, who has passed it further on…but it seems like some Garou could use some kind of instruction themselves before they’re taking kinfolk under their responsibility.”

He hands it back to Balances-Without-Fault.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Oh fuck. You know who that was supposed to be. 😛 ]]

[Danicka Musil] [*points and laughs at samael*]

[Nash] [I for one am proud of Sarita and wish him all the best.]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[I’m working and shit and it was bound to happen eventually AND LEMME ALONE! *mock cries and runs away* Okay nah, it’s funny, ngl]]

[Balance Without Fault] Over behind the bar, Danny suddenly blurts out a cough that sounds suspiciously like a laugh. He claps his hand over his mouth and holds up the other. “I know, Mr. Balance. First and last warning. Sorry.” And he mimes the zipping of his mouth.

Balance, for his part, takes the ball and answers Jackson directly. “Do you or does anyone know the name of this Garou?”

The ball goes back to Jackson.

[Quinn] So far, Quinn hasn’t had anything to bring up, no concerns or grievances to air. For the most part, she keeps out of the way, helping where she can but generally staying under the radar. But when someone says the advice given in times of Thrall was to “play dead,” her blue eyes widen, then her fine dark brows constrict.

When she rises, it’s not to intercept that passage of the eight ball. It’s to raise a brow at Carter Roth, the look simply How rude, trail briefly in his wake, and bend to retrieve the fallen glass of water. She gestures to Danny to bring a towel or something to clean up the water.

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget writes something on a napkin and tucks it into Carter’s hand before he decides to shatter his glass all over the floor and make his way out. She stifles a tiny laugh– it’s not at all audible and she turns her face in Danny’s direction so she doesn’t disturb the conversation– but it’s there.

Gina thankfully offers up some booze, which the Stag kin thankfully takes so she can stifle her grin and shut the fuck up.

[Jackson Montgomery] He takes the ball and seems hesitant to name names at the moment. The information was passed along, but he was given a request. “Kristen. She’s a Fianna Theurge who stays here at the Brotherhood…I don’t know her last name or her deed name.” Handed back.

[Kieran Mondblume] *His eyes widen at that, and he looks back and forth. He frowns, clearly pondering.*

[Balance Without Fault] “Jenny,” Balance speaks directly to the woman watching quietly from over by the kitchen door, “can you get a message to Kristen? Let her know a Thralled Homid would sooner munch a dead body than ignore it, and that maybe she shouldn’t run around teaching the kin for a while.

“Unfortunately,” this is to all, “Garou rarely have time these days to be fully trained before stepping out into the world as Cliaths. The war’s too desperate, and we need soldiers. The downside is occasionally we get a good soldier whose education has been a little lacking in certain non-essential regards.

“There’s really no way prevent these things from happening. I can’t publish a manual of Everything You Should and Shouldn’t Say To Kin. All we can do is troubleshoot one incident at a time, so I appreciate your bringing this up.”

And the ball goes to Kora.

[Danicka Musil] There’s a glance from Shadow Lord Kinswoman to Shadow Lord Elder when Carter leaves. It’s hard to read, for those that don’t know her — for those that are, at the moment, invested in other conversations. He might understand. He might not, even as well as he knows her.

Danicka sips her ice water, and waits for the next blowup.

[Gina McClaren] *Gina’s expression at the breaking of glass is one of frank annoyance. She stands in the kitchen in her barefeet, and hisses irritation. Singing lowly to bridget – yes.. without the 8-ball.*

Trade ye tha sip o’ firewater fer yer gi’en tha broom, Bridget darlin. Dinnae fancy me bloody feet on account o’ foolishness, aye?

[Balance Without Fault] [wait, is Kristen there? i see her logged in. i know patrick’s the fianna alpha, but jacqui ain’t here tonight. well, if Kristen’s here, BWF would speak directly to her.]

[Balance Without Fault] Danny, meanwhile, is hurrying over with dustpan and broom. He shakes his head mutely at Gina and Bridget, forefinger to lips, waving them off. The message is clear: I got it!

[Kristen Burke] ((I was told that Kristen was not allowed to be here As such she has not tried to speak or rebut what was said about her.))

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget moves to action, sets her glass down on the bar, and helps pick up Carter’s mess despite her amusement. It’s alright, the movement gives her something to do. She shakes her head at Danny and helps him anyway.

[Balance Without Fault] [OK, I just saw Jacqui sign on, so I guess Kristen wouldn’t be there after all. Assume Jenny sends her a polite note repeating what BWF said, only a lot nicer and reflexively-apologetic!]

[Gina McClaren] *Gina remains in place. You know. So as not to step in glass with the bare feet. But Danny gives her the shush and she raises an eyebrow in a clear expression of “Oh Enough.” An incredulous shake of her head mirroring the Fianna’s.*

[Quinn] Quinn’s gotten most of the bigger chunks gathered carefully into one hand. When Danny arrives with dustpan and broom, she smiles warmly and rises to carry her burden to the nearest trash bin, which happens to be in the kitchen. When she comes back out again, she weaves around the outside of the circle to return to her seat.

[Kora] There’s something – implicitly feral about the heavily pregnant Garou tonight. She’s standing, not sitting. She should sit. Some of the people tonight are long winded – not telling stories, not remembering deeds, not discussing the dead – just talking.

Those closest to her can feel her restlessness like ozone in the air around her. It does not take much to bring it forward these nights, careful as she has to be now, pregnant as she is. Alone here tonight, her brother – her Godi – gone, her beta in another Sept, seeking his own tribe for challenge.

By the time the eight-ball comes her way, Carter is gone. Her dark eyes follow his path through the room; she catches the scribbing Bridget does on a napkin, watches until the kinsman has left the restaurant.

The creature’s generous mouth flattens then. Whatever she meant to say is distilled down to this: “I have kept my territory open to all tribes, Garou certainly, kin more so. It’s unreasonable to expect you to live in a city and somehow keep track of our changing, Balkanized territory. But, Wyrmbreaker-rhya, that man is barred from mine. I trust you will pass it on to him.”

[Kieran Mondblume] [Dibs?]

[Balance Without Fault] [back to BWF, then Kieran!]

[Honor’s Compass] Katherine and Patrick both here, somewhere, and their player is very apologetic for being tardy! She suggests Katherine is looking very pretty in white standing somewhere near pack-mates and as well as Balance Without Fault and Patrick is over yonder possibly looking confused — also in a very pretty way, albiet more masculine — or simply bored.

Carry on!

[Adamidas] She opens her mouth, then closes it. Her attention seems to be intent on what is going on, and before she can really say anything, the Fury turns her head in the direction of… something. Slightly to the left. She gives the Grand Elder a look and taps her chest with two index fingers, then gestures behind her with her thumb.

Whatever that look says, it must be important. If given the okay, she slips out as quickly as she enters. Just as understated, and punctuated with a pop.

[Balance Without Fault] Though Carter’s departure didn’t provoke an immediate response from the Garou named for his balance, it’s remarked on when the ball comes back into his possession.

“Wyrmbreaker, your kinsman disrespected this gathering again with his dramatic departure. See to it. And let him know that his antics only resulted in the very kin he professes to champion scrambling to clean up his mess.”

He nods to Adamidas, then, before continuing.

“At this point I’m going to make a last call for kin to bring forward their concerns. If there’s nothing else, we’re moving on.”

[on to Kieran! and if there are any more kin concerns, call dibs now cuz BWF is about to move things along]

[Quinn] [dibs because I gotta get something out in case I have to bail before the end!]

[Wyrmbreaker] Wyrmbreaker nods mutely to Kora and and Balance, the second nod deeper than the first. Then he gets up, leaning over to murmur briefly to Danicka before excusing himself from the gathering.

[Kieran Mondblume] *He pushes up, and then he takes the eight ball, shaking it idly.* Clearly, if he’s getting pissed off enough to drop a glass onto the ground and leave, something screwed up happened to him in the past. I think that’s part of the problem. We can’t fix these problems without years and years of therapy that we don’t have time for.

*He tosses the eight ball to his other hand.* But I will say, I’ve noticed every kin has their skills and talents. I don’t think I’m alone in saying, I’d like to hear about those instead.

[Quinn] The tall Fiann has retaken her seat now. It should be noted that she’s wearing clothes, and they’re probably pretty nice, and probably includes a shirt with the sleeves rolled up to reveal the tattoo on her right arm. Nothing fancy, just some cool looking birds.

Anyway!

She sits up a little straighter when there seems to be a lull, lifts her chin, and indicates she’d like the magic eight ball next. When it comes to her, Quinn doesn’t shake it to read her fortune, though she does smile a little down at it before standing to address the assembled.

“Hello,” she says, her voice warm, and still carries a touch of a Baltimore accent. “I’m Quinn, I own The Winchester tavern up in Lake View. Some of you might’ve heard of it. Like The Brotherhood, we’ve only got kin on staff, so it’s a safe place. If any of you are in the area and find yourself in need of a place to rest or otherwise recuperate for a while, the doors are open. To Kin and Garou alike.” After that, she rolls the ball from one hand to the other, says, “That’s it,” and passes it down the line rather than tossing it to the grand elder.

[Nash] The Jarl is understandably restless. On this side of the bar, the Fenrir are all standing; Nash looks like he probably ought to sit down, but for the moment, he’s still on his feet, his right arm held up against his midsection while bruised eyes watch the proceedings–silently, now that that first [and last] outburst is over with.

There is a lot going on, between Strider and Lord Kinfolk slamming out and slamming glasses. Nash, unlike many others, doesn’t have to stifle laughter. He glances around, then finds a place to rest his eyes when Kora starts to speak. He looks back at her when the Uktena speaks, as if looking for something, but he doesn’t lean over to whisper or anything else that might be considered disruptive.

[Delilah Marciano] Delilah sighs; she steps away from the table glancing around at the assembly one final time. She has heard enough, and the Grand Elder has yet to get beyond the first line of questioning. She turns away, slipping off in silence towards the back entrance of the Brotherhood’ hand retrieves her phone, texting her driver to come around to the back side to pick her up as she left the meeting.

[Kora] There’s something about the way Kora handled the eight-ball. Held it as if it were a cracked bone, as if there were marrow in it – rather than likely toxic water locked behind a window with catchy sayings on a plastic weighted die by children chained to extruding machines in some unlikely backwater of Guangdong province, China.

That sense of animal lingers around her. Her hair is pale, fine-stranded, her skin equally pale, winter-thing, dark eyes set above sharp cheeks made softer by the extra weight of advanced pregnancy. No matter: the wolf is still visible underneath. As now. Nash glances at her, and she lifts her chin, canting her head, dark eyes finding his with an unerring sort of grace. She holds the look for a quiet moment, then glances away.

[Balance Without Fault] The eightball comes back to Balance eventually, passed hand to hand until someone loses patience and tosses it. Catching it neatly, the Grand Elder takes a drink of water before going on.

“Let’s discuss that in a minute, Kieran, when we talk about the coalition some more. I have two incidents I want to go over. Unfortunately, Amunet, they both involve you.

“First up: the Brotherhood defense plans were posted up a couple of weeks ago, and you seemed to have something to say about it. Jenny mentioned you removed the original posting as something of an act of protest.” Over by the kitchen, Jenny looks mildly mortified. “What was that about, and has that been settled?”

[Amunet Knezevic] “It was less an act of protest than an act of frustration, Rhya. Again, the perception of being dictated to, rather than being acknowledged as being willing to work together. I apologize for my rash decision, and hope that my actions will not reflect poorly on those who can be held responsible for me.”

Her fingers run in her hair, eyes flickering away before meeting BWF’s once more. “It has been offered that there be a meeting with myself and those charged with the safety of the Brotherhood. I believe it is just a matter of finding a convenient time for everyone, and then the matter should be settled.”

[Danicka Musil] [Dibs!]

[Gina McClaren] *Her flask of corn liquor is reclaimed and settled back in her assets as she steps aside for the exiting Glasswalker kin. Strider kin maneuvering her way out of the kitchen with an eye to the floor, wary for any invisible shards lying in wait for small burnished feet. The kin moves to stand between Leon and Matt, dwarfed by a good foot or more by each. Curvy kin’s body language filling in the gaps where verbal communication was not allowed. She leans on Mirror’s whisper, floury skirt no doubt soiling his perfectly pressed suit. A painted toe prods Hostile Takeover’s knee, accompanied by a wry smile and a roll of eyes. Familiarity and Affection for both, mingled with no small exasperation at the proceedings. Her attention shifts to those speaking.*

[Honor’s Compass] [Kate has something to add! How do I — *hits the buzzer*]

[Danicka Musil] [Danicka yields to the ranked Garou present *gavel*]

[Wyrmbreaker] [dibs order is Kate, Danicka, then probably BWF.]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Sarita doesn’t fail to notice Gina’s brief interaction, such as it is, with Leon. Her eyes narrow a little bit, watching them, and anyone paying attention to her would notice a bit of bristling. She doesn’t speak out, merely watches for a long moment before looking back.

Yeah. She’ll be dealing with that later.

[Matthieu] Matthieu made certain to follow the kin across the floor. Whether Gina knew it or not those eyes followed her quietly. She drew closer and closer and even took the chance to squeeze herself between he and his beta. A slight smile grew and he peeked up at the woman with a hint of a smile. She had likely been drinking and was feeling pleasant. Which was surprisingly okay with the Garou who looked up at her with familiar eyes.

He didn’t speak however, simply welcomed her to join if she pleased.

[Leon Davenport] Finally something interesting happening to this meeting And no it’s not an angry kin storming out or incidents involving one with the Broho’splan or anything else. No, it’s the presence of a beautiful caramel skinned Strider kin, moving between him and his Alpha.

Shelean into Matt and that makes him smile, a genuine rare one from the Ahroun these days. Then she prds hm and the smile grew wider. He kept hi hands in his pants pockets, his smile turning into a grin. Then his piercing blue eyes were back on the meeting

There has been no GW kin here that he knew of. After all he knew Delilah only by her GWnet handle. He didn’t want any of his tribe’s kin getting into troubel tonight. He seem ot have had his wish granted.

[Kieran Mondblume] *His eyes, however, remain on Amy, and the Grand Elder. He looks, very briefly, worried, though it passes rather quickly. Nothing else in the meeting seems to catch his dark eyes.*

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget finally retakes her seat, glass in hand. Her brown eyes shift around the room as if for a second, she forgot where she was. The kinswoman shakes it off and sips the remaining whiskey, her eyes floating somewhere between Patrick and Kieran for whatever reason.

[Honor’s Compass] Honor’s Compass, who has, up until this moment been relatively silent, merely a formidable presence in so far as a regal Silver Fang of her ranking should be, standing to one side with her arms neatly folded over her chest; her coat open to reveal silk blouse beneath, the designer jeans and knee-high boots.

Immaculate as ever, she somehow managed to avoid it becoming ridiculous; her carefully arranged hair; her glossed lips. It was the animal grace in her that controlled it; the thrill of danger posed by those pale eyes of hers as they sweep the assembly, as manicured nails close over the eight ball.

Her eyes find Sarita’s sister.

“If I may, Rhya,” she says in her voice, rippling with its hint of french gentility, “I have some knowledge of these goings on. I was approached here at the Brotherhood by Adara, Song of Life, a Black Fury Galliard I believe my Alpha put in charge of the Brotherhood plans, along with Adamidas. She told me of the issues with the Kinswoman.”

A beat. “She asked my council, and two sides to this issue were brought before me, one from Garou and the other spoken on the behalf of the Kinfolk by one of Cockroaches Kin.” The Fang’s lip curves a little, inexplicably. “My sense was that they were working at cross-purposes, here. The Kinfolk, rightly enough, want their say in their own safety, but the Garou have their own notions on how Kinfolk need to be so protected.

My advice was to meet together, and discuss it. I believe this is the meeting Amunet is referring to.”

[Nash] With his left hand, Nash reaches up to scrub at his scruffy face when the tiny Indian woman moves across the room and proceeds to cause the blood pressure of at least four Trueborn to spike. He doesn’t sigh or stare, but when his hand comes away from his face and returns to his jacket pocket the kinsman glances over at Kora again.

That glance lasts only so long as the silence between active speakers; a few seconds after the regal blonde begins to speak, his eyes slowly drift away to acknowledge her.

[Rain McKellar] ((Rain will stay with the other Gaian kin until the meeting lets out, but her player must go to sleep soon. Thanks, all, for the scene.))

[Balance Without Fault] [night!]

[Danicka Musil] This time, the ball comes to Danicka more easily, since her mate has excused himself from the proceedings for the moment and it seems that Danicka doesn’t trust herself to catch the bizarre little toy if lobbed her way. She hears about the defense plan — something she’s only heard rumors of, not the story she just got. She looks at Amunet briefly when she takes the 8-ball, but in the end, doesn’t address the Strider kin as she did earlier.

“-Rhya,” she says, to Balance Without Fault, “the Kinfolk have tried before to establish leadership amongst themselves before, but in that case and in this one, there’s a serious problem with Garou being kept out of the loop.” She thinks a moment. “If the Kinfolk want to be heard by the Garou — to have a voice, for example, in deciding the defense plan for the Brotherhood of Thieves, to have at least some kind of vote in matters that affect them personally, then is there any reason why the Garou in charge of defense for this place should not have a Kinfolk — preferably a resident — whose counsel is sought in decisions about it?”

A beat. She blinks those round, green eyes of hers, turning to look at Amunet. “And maybe, if only to limit the amount of suspicion and paranoia and rumors of discontent, maybe an alliance of Kinfolk would have a better chance of success if there is a Garou involved in the proceedings and decisions being made — not to dictate, not to rule, but to communicate the needs the Garou have to the Kin, and vice versa?”

[Balance Without Fault] Balance listens to Katherine with clear attentiveness; then Danicka.

“It’s become increasingly clear to me tonight that some level of constant communication needs to be set up between the Garou of this Sept and the Kin. That’s part of what I wanted to discuss when we talk about the coalition a little more. I realize I’ve delayed the discussion of the coalition again and again, but I’m going to have to ask for your patience a little longer.”

He turns back to Amunet.

“There will always be some level of dictation, Amunet. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. The Nation is not a democracy. There is one Grand Elder. One Warder. One warleader. One Garou in charge of the defense of the Brotherhood, and one Garou assisting her.

“It’s not your place to rebel against that order. If you feel unheard, then speak. You may bring your suggestions up, just as anyone else can — and it seems that with Honor’s Compass’s counsel, you intend to do exactly that.

“You may not, however, display blatant insubordination to those who rank over you. And you must understand that the final say still belongs to those charged with the keeping of the Brotherhood. This isn’t a kin/Garou issue. It’s a simple issue of hierarchy. I would say the same to your sister Sarita, or even to the Philodox Elder.”

Balance turns the magic eightball over in his hands, then continues.

“The second point I wanted to address specifically is this. I’ve heard reports that you were seeking a Garou to … beat you? And that you would tape this as some sort of instructional video?

“What’s the story there, Amunet? I hardly know where to begin.”

[Amunet Knezevic] She looks very tired, very suddenly, tongue bitten to keep herself quiet as she waits her turn.

[Kieran Mondblume] *He flinches visibly.*

[August Grant] A brow rose.

That sounded like the single most stupid idea she’s heard in awhile.

Was that girl daft?

[Izzy Montoya] She’s wanting…. what?! Izzy’s head whips about so quickly her hair flies in a semi circle, smacking her in the face while she stares at Amunet with dropped jaw…. only to have it snap shut on the comment not quite bitten back..

“Motherfu…” snap.

She turns, and stalks to the kitchen. She needs a serious drink. Now.

[Quinn] Quinn actually does a double-take, and frowns at Amunet.Her thoughts are similar August’s. What would that even teach?

[Kieran Mondblume] *He raises one hand, however, before forgetting himself, and he holds his hand out for the ball.*

[Jackson Montgomery] He blinks as the idea for the original plan comes out in a horribly mangled, telephone version of what was actually discussed. He looks at Balances With Fault, then at Amunet and back, before he takes a [[DIBS]] after Amunet.

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget tenses in her little corner of the world, and the nearly empty glass falls into her lap before she catches it. A slight amount of whiskey and ice bleed into the fabric.

“Shit,” she says under her breath. Looking directly to BWF with an expression of apology, she zips it quickly, gathers her skirts, and moves towards the kitchen following Izzy.

[Kieran Mondblume] ((Though I am willing to wait for dibs till after Amy and Jackson have had their say))

[Leon Davenport] Leon blinked a few times, eyes on Amy. Ok…now that was..well..totally crazy even for her. He actually had to look at Sarita with a brow raised as if asking her..what the hell? But he doesn’t say anything, doesn’t smile or anything. He was mostly, perplexed by all of this.

He had an idea why she’d ask that, but to him it dodn’t seem like the right way to do things.

[Danicka Musil] Danicka, in the face of people restraining the urge to curse, of staring, of double-takes… blinks at Amunet. There’s no anger, no sudden omgwtfbbq. But surprise. And definite, strong interest in hearing something other than the rumor that Balance Without Fault wants to be explained and clarified.

[Gina McClaren] *Wait – woah.. What? Gina arcs her back away from Matt, squinting at the better bred strider kin across the room. Expression caugt between disgust and disbeleif. She looks up to Matt meaningfully, as if to say “Didn’t I tell you? Crazy. Every fucking one of them.” That flask gets retrieved and sampled from once more.*

[Amunet Knezevic] “Okay. So” She takes a deep breath. Remember what Stefan said, Ames…

“First of all, it was an idea that was being batted around. Just that. I’m unsure why everyone seems content to run around asking everyone else why I’m doing what I’m doing, but that seems to be the trend. It was considered, it was discussed, and nothing has been done. There’s no reason for anyone to assume that it’s moving forward.

As for being secretive and not wanting Garou involvement in the alliance, that is simply not true. The Shadow Lord Nathalie has offered her assistance, and I have taken her up on that. I’m not hiding anything. I’m not trying to exclude anyone that would benefit the alliance.”

She gestures toward the departing Bridget. “She wants to talk, but she wasn’t there for the conversation. She’s referring to Adara, the Fury. She asked to be included in the alliance, and when reminded it was a kinfolk alliance, she compared it to the KKK. Jackson was there for the conversation. I’m sure he can back me up. My issue with allowing her to be part of this isn’t that she’s Garou, it’s that she’s a shitty excuse for a Garou.”

[Quinn] [dibs!]

[Wyrmbreaker] [Dibs is Jackson, Kieran, Quinn right now — though BWF might cut in line at some point!]

[Quinn] [WHOOPS! That was supposed to be Joey!]

[Amunet Knezevic] [I’m assuming she’ll be asked to explain that….]

[Wyrmbreaker] [joey –> jackson –> kieran]

[Kieran Mondblume] ((And Ki gives up his dibs.)) *He lowers his hand again, and then he goes back to listening.*

[Honor’s Compass] [Damn it, now Kate has to speak up. SORRY.]

[Wyrmbreaker] [kate –> joey –> jackson –> kieran]

[Matthieu] His eyes meet Gina’s own and he looks back at the kin though he doesn’t nod. His eyes say enough and he reassures her with a slight pat to the small of her back. Though the Galliard doesn’t wish to appear as if he isn’t listening and taking in every word. Indeed he was listening to everything that was said. Formulating an opinion on each and every personality that shows itself here tonight.

[Izzy Montoya] She’s not long. Long enough to have a shot and pour a second that she brings with her, in time to hear that it was just an idea being bat around, without nay explanation whatsoever. Her jaw tenses, and she finds a space of wall to lean against, setting the glass on the table and lighting another cigarette.

[Jackson Montgomery] [[Officially voicing a request to try to keep a bit closer to the 10 minute posting limit that was established for Dibbers.]]

[Honor’s Compass] Katherine’s eyes cut toward Amy.

“That is the second occasion I have heard, and the first directly from your lips of insult to Song of Life, Amunet. I do not care who you believe you are, who your mate is or how valid your cause — you will pay the respect due to a Garou or you will be sending your mate to every door in the Sept to make amends for your mouth.

I said it before, I say it again.

Respectful disagreement.”

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget returns soon after, patting at her skirt with a towel. She passes Izzy and takes her seat again, then offers her hand up to speak for the second time.

[Bridget Geroux] [Dibs when it gets her direction]

[Kora] Kora does not glance at Amunet. Her dark eyes track Izzy, though, as she weaves through the room. Then, the creature glances back at Nash. Fine blond brows arch eloquently over her shadowed eyes. Restlessness runs patterned beneath her skin. Even standing still she looks ready to prowl.

[Wyrmbreaker] [joey –> jackson –> kieran –> bridget]

[August Grant] Even though she really, really wanted to be here for this lovely conversation – the pregnant girl’s bladder could only hold out so long. So, carefully enough, she made her way to the ladies room .. and then to the kitchen, where she’d find a snack and linger in the door for a moment eating before returning to her chair.

[Joey] The magic eight ball starts to head toward another kin, but the Fostern Rotagar indicates the need for an interception. It goes to Kate first, and when it gets to Joey, she palms it, and inclines her head toward Amy.

“Just t’clarify, this idea,” she reaches up her free hand to pantomime air quotes, “was brought to the elders ’cause you’d already gone at least to Burnout lookin’ for a volunteer. And when I talked to you about it, everything you said told me you were set on goin’ through with it, despite warnings and consequences.

“So you’re not bein’ called out on it just ’cause someone’s followin’ some sort’ve trend.”

The eight ball is passed on.

[Kieran Mondblume] ((Ki actually gave up his dibs.))

[Amunet Knezevic] [dibs after bridget, please]

[Wyrmbreaker] [jackson –> bridget –> amunet!]

[Jackson Montgomery] He takes the 8=Ball and steps forward. “Just to provide my own perspective on this idea. Which, at least when we discussed it, was just an idea. It was brainstorming possibilities, nothing more. Amunet asked me, since I was a film student, if there was a way for us to be able to film…not a Garou beating the tar out of a kinfolk, Amy or otherwise. But potential sparring sessions. The reason for this would be that, if we were in a situation where combat was inevitable, we’d be more capable. This wasn’t ‘Beat the shit out of me and film it and you’ll know what it’s like to be in a fight. Hell, a Garou could spar with someone in homid and we could film that. These specifics weren’t even gone over because it was one three minute portion of one much longer discussion.

“The key was, and what we were discussing, was that if it was done, it would have to be done securely. No internet access to the video. Not multiple copies floating around. Again, this was a big if, and I felt it was conceivably possible, if not a sure thing. No one was setting up sets or anything like that, I wasn’t figuring out lighting and camera angles or what lens to use. As near as I knew, Amunet was checking with Garou to see if there would even be volunteers, because if not the rest didn’t even matter.

He frowns. “If there was some kind of telephone situation where it wasn’t properly communicated, then there you have it. But the idea was far saner and far more brainstorming than that I just heard. Obviously the Veil was our first concern and what we were discussing before any considerations came into play.”

[Hunter] [hunter taking dibs after bridget, before amunet]

[Gina McClaren] *Gina’s taking a fourth shot. Amazing how much alcohol can disappear into the little Indian woman in so short a period of time. The flask’s cap clinks metallic and resolute as its popped on tightly. Flask itself handed to Leon, a flat palm held up, then making an abrupt cutting motion. The fuzziness in her stomach and the hazy tingle behind brown eyes told her anymore would loosen her tongue, and no one wanted that tonight. So the woman who was rapidly becoming a lush entrusts her fire water to the Glasswalker , before settling back against the Silverfang’s comforting hand. Her eyes slip firmly shut.*

[Balance Without Fault] [bridget –> hunter –> amunet]

[Bridget Geroux] “That reminds me when Carter took your injuries last time. We all asked you about the bruises and you wouldn’t answer. I let it go because you seemed uncomfortable, but if I thought for a second you might want someone to beat you up… What the hell, Amy? How do you expect to display leadership among us with… whatever is going on?”

She stops and shakes her head. “I’m sorry, Amy. That got a bit too personal. But when I saw you talking to Song of Life, I just couldn’t hear it anymore. By the way, she has shown nothing but the utmost respect for my crazy ass ways and was one of the very few Garou who has encouraged me to keep doing my work rather than some Garou who have discouraged me from it. Maybe they’ve done it because they cared, but she is one of the few Garou I’d be more than willing to invite to my own house just to shoot the shit. I respect and admire the hell out of the Garou who treat kinfolk– even those not of their tribe– like the family we are. Family might be my whole grievance in the first place.”

“My other issue with the alliance is, like Danicka repeated earlier, that it is too jealously guarded, even from other kinfolk. My father, Meuric ‘Bear’ Geroux for those of you who care about the formality, used to tell me all the time how Septs grow weaker when not even the kinfolk can rely on one another as family.”

[Leon Davenport] He looked at Gina with a grin and took the flask out of her hand, making it disapear in his suit’s jacket. He nodded to her, letting her know it will be returned to her eventually. Not that it wasn’t a big deal if she had something of hers. She had something of him.

So it was with familiarity that he gently nudge her before looking back at those talking.

[Bridget Geroux] [First part got cut off:]
Bridget looks towards Amy with raised eyebrows as she takes the 8 ball, an expression of genuine concern.

[Balance Without Fault] [hunter’s up, then amunet, then BWF is taking the ball]

[Hunter] [oh shit browser didn’t refresh gimme a minute]

[Danicka Musil] At the bar, Danicka glances at the door, wondering about her mate, and frankly about Carter. She sips her water and returns her attention to the discussion. There’s no lightly thoughtful look on her face now. She’s quite serious. Bordering, in fact, on visibly tense.

[Hunter] The eight ball gets grasped in one meaty palm and he doesn’t stand to speak.

“Amy came to me first I believe, out of any Garou, sayin’ she wanted me to do it. I explained this to her at the time but I’ll repeat it because it seems ya’ don’t quite get it Jackson.”

A beat.

“For starters, Amy squarin’ off vs me in any form is just gonna be a beatin’ plain n’ simple. That’s just all there is to it. Secondly from what I was told the purposes for doin’ this was so that kinfolk could get some expertise on how to fight against a fuckin’ spiral — scuse ma language — n’that she’d want me to fight her not just in human form.

Now I don’t know what ya’ know bout’ spirals but fightin’ ya’ is about the last thing they’re gonna do. It won’t be in human form, so sparrin’ vs me in homid ain’t gonna teach ya’ shit. It won’t be to kill ya’ n’I don’t think I need to — nor should I try to, or am adequately able to — express just what they’d be tryin’ to do.

The flaws of this video been pointed out by my Beta quite clearly to Amy, but from where I stand there’s some seriously misguided ideas based on the fact that ya’ thought that me puttin’ a kin near death would actually help anyone learn anythin’ of value against that group’a devils.”

There’s a beat and then:

“The fact that ya’ thought me doin’ that could help is, quite frankly, god damn insultin’.”

[Kora] (going to bed folks. Kora’s still around looking restless and pregnant. Jamie has my permission to NPC her and directions for certain circumstances, cheers!)

[Balance Without Fault] [amunet–>BWF!]

[Amunet Knezevic] “I didn’t want to shame the Trueborn that gave me the bruises, Bridget. No one knew that he was going to heal them, and I certainly didn’t seek him out to do it.

And again, Bridget, you don’t know the whole story. Good for you that you get along with her. I don’t, and I have solid reasons why that is the case.

HOW am I being secretive? What kinfolk have I turned away? I don’t understand how not ramming an alliance down the kin’s throat turns into me being secretive. Explain.”

She flinches when Hunter speaks, eyes searching out anywhere to rest on but him. Her fingers run in her hair again, then move to scratch between her shoulder blades. “Fucking funny how you tell her fucking everything except the shit you’re ashamed of”

[Bridget Geroux] [Dibs if offered]

[Izzy Montoya] She felt Kora’s eyes on her, but she doesn’t meet her gaze. Not yet. Not right away. In fact, it’s not until Hunter’s clarifying that her gaze snaps up again, and there’s something.. something there. Something in dark eyes that’s clearly…

…well. Of all here, only Kora knows and only with passing details. Izzy tightens her hand around the drink, and pushes from the wall. She takes a step forward, and then shakes her head. Then, when she finally looks up and meets Kora’s gaze, her teeth audibly grind, and she turns, sets the drink down and heads to the door.

and if there’s a muttered curse or ten, well. No one who knows her is surprised.

[Balance Without Fault] [bwf is taking the ball!]

[Hunter] There’s a moment where Hunter simply stares at Amy with his jaw firmly set and then? He looks away, relaxes in his seat as much as the — sometimes high strung — Ahroun could ever relax under such conditions.

[Prayers to Broken Stone] Prayers to Broken Stone has been lounging against a wall in his hoodie; arms folded over his chest; sniffing every now and then as if he had a cold. There’s been a beer bottle in one of his hands fairly steadily and at some point; he’d excused himself to raid the kitchen; he returns now, to discussion of beatings and video tapes and something about Hunter being ashamed.

He bites a hunk out of his sandwich, and shuffle-excuses his way back to his little spot like that annoying late-comer at the movies who blocks out the screen as the heroine and her man get it on finally.

[Balance Without Fault] “Enough.” Balance takes the ball back. “I don’t want to dwell on this longer than we have to. This is not a public lynching. I’ll say this, and then we move on.

“Amunet, videotaping a Garou is a very bad idea. Videotaping a Garou in non-Homid form is a worse idea. Asking a non-homid Garou to attack you so you can videotape is insanity. I realize this was a brainstorm. But that sort of idea should never even come to your mind. Not simply because of the threat to the Veil, but because it tells me that you genuinely believe with enough training a kin would have options against a Dancer in warform beyond running.

“Izzy Montoya mentioned earlier that you were going to get people killed. I’m starting to see her point.

“Let me be very clear on this: you can train if you want to. You can learn first aid, you can learn self defense. If the Warleader judges you capable, we are even willing to entertain the idea of an elite kin squad assaulting light targets to support their Garou brethren. But you are not equipped to fight a Garou in warform. If you’re so unlucky as to be caught by one, you should run. And you should teach your friends to run — not lull them into some misguided idea that they might be able to fight and win.”

Balance’s fingers tap restlessly on the eightball for a moment. Then he goes on:

“I want to move on to discussion the coalition, its leadership, and the idea of establishing a Garou-kin liaison to maintain an open line of communication between the kin and Garou of this Sept. Before we get there, I just have two more questions:

“Bridget, you mentioned something about a Garou forbidding you from something you want to do. Be more specific. What do you speak of?

“And Amunet, you accuse Hunter of not speaking of something he’s ashamed of. What are you speaking of?”

[Bridget –> then Amunet, unless she rejects it!]

[Kieran Mondblume] *He looks back to Hunter at that, and he sighs deeply. Looking back to Amy. And then back to BWF. Again watching. He wants to speak, but the words are not coming easily, it seems, so he keeps his mouth shut.*

[Matthieu] Matthieu watches in preparation for Amunet’s response. The Galliard was standing ready and keeping his attention on every word that would come out of the Kin’s mouth.

[Gina McClaren] *Curiouser and Curiouser. Gina’s eyes slowly open, and her gaze rests on Hunter, expression inquiring, her head tilted to the side. Not unlike a german shepard trying to puzzle out an algebra equation.

That is to say – hopelessly lost.

She looks from Leon and Matt back to Hunter, as though she might figure out whats shaking through some sort of elaborate half drunk social triangulation.*

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] The Strider is watching with the most intense look of concentration anyone’s ever seen on her face. It is focused on her sister and the Grand Elder. It could be because she’s curious–tense?–to see what might be said, or it could be because she’s not wanting to look at certain individuals who might raise her ire. Her expression is pained. It’s clear to anyone who might look at her that although her protectorate obligations are over with, it certainly doesn’t mean that she doesn’t care. She knows how her sister must feel right now, what this is like for her, because she knows Amy so well.

She would rather it be her in that place instead of Amy, being questioned and having doubt heaped on by others.

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget fidgets with the ball when it comes her way, taking a deep breath. “I’m sorry, Amy, if that got a bit too personal. Catch me later if you want.”

She continues quickly. “I have on a few occasions been told by several Garou. Forgive me, but one didn’t tell me his name. The other was Simon, who I think expressed concern over my well being. I should explain. The Sept I am from is in the Rockies, in the middle of nowhere. I’m not boasting, but I know I’m a skilled survivalist. It feels unnatural going for so long in the city without getting some fresh air. But on several occasions, without explanation, I’ve been discouraged from going outside of the city to… do my thing.”

The Fianna kin continues, “I don’t understand what the difference is if I’m alone in the city or in the woods. I can handle myself just fine out there, and I’ve gone out there on several occasions on my own before Simon and some others told me I shouldn’t.”

[Balance Without Fault] “And that’s all you’re doing? Just going into the woods to … hike?”

He tosses the ball back.

[Leon Davenport] His shift position slightly, watching Amunet, glancing at Sarita and then Hunter. What will Amy say? He hoped that Amy will decide not to tlk. For herself, for Hunter and maybe for him. He wasn’t sure what Amy meant, what Hunter did or didn’t do., but somethings were sad that didn’t make him entirely comfortable

Thongs has been dealt with and he had no intention to have them brought back to the forefront.

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget catches it, “No. I hunt. I check the trails, get familiar with the landscape. Sometimes, I stay out there for quite a while with little or no supplies. It’s… no different from what I did back home.”

[Derek Anderson] (*things has been dealt..)

[August Grant] {Alright, gotta get to bed – August will stay through the meeting with the other Coggies. Night all.)

[Danicka Musil] [Night! Thanks for playing!]

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [Patrick will take a break from eating to pipe in at some point RE: Bridget.]

[Bridget Geroux] [Add: check the landscape, figure out the flora and fauna.]

[Balance Without Fault] “I see no harm in that. Patrick, you represent the Fianna. What do you think?”

Lob.

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget seems quite pleased with BWF’s comment, but waits on Patrick’s response.

[Hunter] [if anyone wants a description post of hunter’s appearance etc right now let me know otherwise I’m just chillin’ LOL]

[Nash] [I don’t think I’ll survive without one.]

[Rosie] Rosalie has been very quiet. Nothing more than another small body among a wealth of very well bred kin and Garou. While the conversation continues between the primary parties, the kin slips her fingers inside the front pocket of her jeans and removes her cell phone. She is quiet and unobtrusive while her fingers move quickly over the Qwerty keyboard.

[Balance Without Fault] [angelina, since your post is pretty separate from this business with Bridget, you might wanna start pre-writing!]

[Hunter] [AHAHAHA, gina just got a trillion empathy suxx ;((( ]

[Prayers to Broken Stone] Prayers to Broken Stone sets his beer down and catches the eightball the way a baseball player might; both hands. He’s finishing chewing his sandwich as he goes and holds up a finger briefly to swallow, then thump himself over his chest to help work it down.

Brushing crumbs from his mouth, the intensely-blue eyed Galliard of Last Watch speaks simply, without intention for pretty wording.

“Thanks, man — Rhya, man. Uh, look I know Bridget fairly well. I think I can say with an attempt at authority she’s not insane, girl can hold her own when fist comes at face. I have no problem with her hiking in the woods. I think of some of the Kinfolk here, no respect really, but I think of them, she’d do pretty well.

So, yeah.”

He nods at the Fiann, and lobs off the eightball.

[Kieran Mondblume] ((And I am passing out. The coughing has not ceased, so whatever he might say in response I can wait on for now, I think.))

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [no.. DISrespect. Hooboy.]

[Jackson Montgomery] [[Jackson: *Pitches a fit and storms out weeping*]]

[Nash] When his phone buzzes in his pocket, he does not whip it out to see who it is while still in the midst of the meeting. He hears it, and quietly steps out from between Holden and Kora to find some sort of an exit. Being as he’s never been in here before, it takes a moment before he realizes the kitchen is through the swinging doors and manages to make it that way, moving at an unhurried pace, keeping his right arm held to his ribs.

Whatever he sees when he ends up in the kitchen makes him laugh, and then the door swings shut behind him.

[Amunet Knezevic] She catches the ball, eyes on BWF and nowhere else. “I understand that it’s a bad idea, Rhya. I put more stock into Laughs in the Face of Death Rhya’s words than was evident at the time. I assure you, the idea had been abandoned long before this meeting.”

Her teeth catch the corner of her bottom lip for a moment, before her head shakes. “I apologize for the comment. To both you and Burnout Rhya as well. It wasn’t about anything pertinent to the discussion or the Nation, just something that my brother and I should discuss at a later time”

[Rosie] Blue eyes sweep over Amunet’s face but what – if anything – she’s thinking at that moment are not completely obvious. Her fingers ghost over her phone before she slides it closed and stands from her chair where she’d been sitting. There’s a quiet apology given to those seated nearest her before she edges away and manoeuvres a path through the proper area and into the kitchen.

[Balance Without Fault] [crap — this goes in before Amunet — ]

“I’d add only two admonishments to that. First: I’d keep that sort of solitude to a minimum until the kinhunter business has passed. You’ll be easy pickings on your own, miles from anyone else. Second: I hope to Gaia you’re hunting rabbits and deer, not Wyrm creatures.”

[Amunet Knezevic] [*scootches back to make room*]

[Prayers to Broken Stone] Patrick watches as one by one, Kinfolk slip into the kitchen. He cranes his neck.

“What is there some secret door I don’t know of back there?” He calls at random, then grimaces in a ‘my bad’ way if looked at sharply for speaking out of turn. He does gesture at the kitchen to others though, in a what gives manner.

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget shakes her head at that. “Oh, god no. I’m not that much of a moonbrain.”

[Derek Anderson] He lean against the wall, listening, not talking. He has been one of the few Kin who didn’t speak up and was still there. And he wasn’t going to leave until the meeting was over. He was Silver Fang and he would do things properly. Beside, it was somewhat interesting. He learned a few things, watching everyone, listening.

He offered Rain and August a smile as both kin were obiosuly tired, August understandably so, being prengant and all. He will offer her andEla a ride home after the meeting and Rain too, unless she leaves with one of Kora’s people

[Gina McClaren] *Dark eyes slide from Hunter to his Fenrir Packmate. Flick to Gina’s kinfolk tribesmate. Tipsy kin contemplative as she rests against Mirror’s Whisper, considering the garou of Defiance a moment longer. Leon’s tenseness is sensed in a peripheral, instinctive manner, and dealt with just as naturally. Gina tugs his shirt-sleeve in a gesture of comradery, before settling back in to listen. She’d leave to go to “work” once the meeting was over.*

[ok! I have got to sleep or I’m just going to start typing “Ale-Alejandro Ale Alejandrooo” over and over again. Or something equally inane. Good Night folks! Have fun!]

[Joey] [Do I want to know what’s going on in the kitchen? curiositah!]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 1, 1, 2, 7, 7, 9 (Success x 1 at target 6)

[Balance Without Fault] [night!]

[Joey] It’s the laughter that has Joey looking back toward the kitchen, as the Fenrir kinsman disappears behind the swinging door. And it’s Patrick calling attention to it that has her curiosity piqued.

But this meeting is srs bznz. Joey manages to contain that desire to know. At least for now.

[Balance Without Fault] [typing, folks! sorry it’s taking a while!]

[Balance Without Fault] Balance considers Amunet a moment, then nods. “Fair enough. Let’s move on.”

A moment’s pause, reflective. Then Balance takes another drink of water, sets the eightball down beside him, and speaks.

“I think we got somewhere tonight. I think we addressed a lot of concerns, some minor and some major, that needed to be talked about. That said, I think there’s still a lot up in the air, and it’s pretty evident that we need a more permanent mode of communication between the kin and the Garou of this Sept.

“I’m taking a page from my tribesmen in southern California. I’m hereby creating two new offices in this Sept: a Sept liaison amongst the kin, and a Kin liaison amongst the Garou. Their task is simple. They represent the kin and the Garou, respectively, and they interface with each other to make sure there’s an open line of communication at all times.

“If a kin has an issue that requires the attention of the Garou, bring it to the Sept Liaison. He or she is the voice of the kin in this Sept. Whatever the issue, the Sept Liaison is in charge of speaking to the appropriate Tribal Alpha to find a resolution, or — if it’s a matter that affects all the Garou — the Kin Liaison. The Sept Liaison is also tasked with passing critical information from the kin to the Garou. I will consider allowing the Sept Liaison to stand witness at the Crackings of the Bone, though I want to hear the Philodox Elder’s opinion on protocol and precedent first.

“In complement, the Kin Liaison will attend coalition meetings — primarily as a listener, but also as a voice for the Garou when necessary. The Kin Liaison will have a direct line to me and the other Sept and Tribal Elders as necessary. It’s also my hope that the Kin Liaison will have the basic leadership skills necessary to independently handle minor issues.

“Now, as to who will fulfill these roles — Mirror’s Whisper, you spoke earlier of your pack’s role. It seems to me that you’re ideally suited to our Kin Liaison. If you’re willing, the job is yours.”

[Wyrmbreaker] It’s in the middle of Balance’s speech that the door opens and Wyrmbreaker slips back in. He takes his seat by Danicka again. He looks a little worn out, but — rather glad, surprisingly.

There’s no blood on him anywhere. He takes his mate’s hand as he sits, squeezes it once, and then turns to pay attention to the Grand Elder.

[Amunet Knezevic] Her breath catches and holds. There is absolutely no doubt how much she desires to be named to the newly formed position.

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget pays a glance to Amy, her face grows concerned. Her eyes flick back to Balance Without Fault as she backs away towards the bar, making herself less obtrusive. Bridget won’t touch that with a ten foot pole unless someone beat her with it and tied it to her arms.

[Wyrmbreaker] [sorry to wreck your transcript, unbrokenites, but!

Lukas caught up to Carter outside and offered him the choice between getting exiled and going voluntarily into house arrest for a month. Carter agreed to house arrest, so he’ll be shacking up at the Loft. Sorry, Kate!

Lukas also stipulated that he’ll have a stormcrow following him around, and that he’s only allowed to be at the Loft and immediately surrounding areas or at work. If he wants a guest over, he has to get Kate’s permission.

Carter wanted to continue training kin, so Lukas said he’d ask Kate if it was okay for Carter to use the rumpus room. If not, Lukas will find him a dojo or something.

/end transmission!]
to Danicka Musil, Honor’s Compass, Sarita Ecos de la Risa

[Honor’s Compass] [I’m typing!]

[Danicka Musil] [Sinclair sez: HAHAHA HOPE YOU GUYS ARE HAVING FUN OUT THERE WITH THE KINFOLK DRAMUHZ. I’M GOING TO TIJUANA TOMORROW TO GET FIREWORKS FOR MY BIRTHDAY. WERD.]
to Honor’s Compass, Sarita Ecos de la Risa, Wyrmbreaker

[Matthieu] He nods his head back at Balance without Fault and his smile shows.”Thank you, I should like that my pack serve as a representative not only of the Garou but as a display of what the Garou and Kin can accomplish together. I would proudly accept the role as I would never wish our kin in this sept to go without a voice. They are the heart of our society and I should like that we can repair any rifts between us soon enough.”He smiles and looks to the other Kin present.

[Honor’s Compass] Honor’s Compass has been frowning in consideration for some time as discussion and debate wore on; when Balance Without Fault calls for her opinion on the matter of a Kinfolk standing in attendance at the Moots, she stirs and tosses a wave of silky gold hair over a shoulder; taking hold once more of the ball.

“I see no true issue with the appointed Kinfolk Liaison attending Moots within reason. I do not believe that unless they have matters to bring forward, they need be present and when they are, it would be my advice, Rhya, that they speak only when other matters have been addressed — unless there is reason why they should speak before the collected Garou.

I would further suggest that bearing in mind whoever gains this position, that their tribal Alpha be held responsible for their safety and conduct during appearances at our Moots.”

[Honor’s Compass] [Kate has no issue with the naughty Kinfolk being chained to her house. She has a free room available for him, chains optional.

She’ll provide him with a spare key and inform him he is welcome to make use of the rumpus space as long as he’s respectful to Kate’s other guests and knows if he steps out of line she’ll put him down.]
to Danicka Musil, Sarita Ecos de la Risa, Wyrmbreaker

[Balance Without Fault] [dibs list: kate –> BWF!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [Sarita says: “Long as I don’t have to dodge gunfire for using all the hot water in the shower, sounds like a plan.” Though she’s super-distracted at the moment, too.]]
to Danicka Musil, Honor’s Compass, Wyrmbreaker

[Danicka Musil] [Sinclair sez: WEEE-OOO. TEQUILAAA.]
to Honor’s Compass, Sarita Ecos de la Risa, Wyrmbreaker

[Balance Without Fault] [i’m an idiot, it wasn’t refreshing.]

[Balance Without Fault] Balance Without Fault listens to Katherine; it’s readily apparent that her word is carefully attended to and weighed. Nodding, he takes the eightball back.

“Fair enough. The Sept Liaison may attend the Cracking of the Bone as a witness. He or she may speak if and only if they have a valid concern to bring forth on behalf of all the kin. The tribal Alpha of this kin is held responsible for the Sept Liaison’s safety and conduct.

“With that said, I’ll consider nominations for the Sept Liaison now.”

[Hunter] [dibs]

[Hunter] Hunter takes the eight ball for the second time tonight and by the way he keeps glancing over his shoulder at the kitchen it’s probably going to be the last time.

“Let me just say Amy’s eager if nuthin’ else. She wants to help n’despite all that’s been said tonight, I think her hearts in the right place which is more than can be said for some kinfolk.

In saying that, I spoke with Imogen Slaughter, she’s agreed to step in and help out the cause that Amy’s started n’I think we’d all be fools not to consider her for nomination. She couldn’t be here tonight cause she’s cleanin’ up the mess one’a our kind left behind, but I think she’d do this if it were offered to her.”

The way he looks at Amy is apologetic if anything, but having said his piece, he hands the eight ball on.

[Bridget Geroux] Bridget makes her way quietly over to Patrick, then leans over and whispers something quietly to her Tribal Elder. It is the briefest of moments before she touches his shoulder and retreats into the kitchen.

[Nash] [Oh shit I’m supposed to be proxying for Liz/Kora!

Yes. Dibbage –> seconding of Hunter’s nomination of Imogen for Kora.]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[DIBS]]

[Amunet Knezevic] Just remember, some people there will be skeptical. Some may even try to show that you is not ready by trying to entice your anger. Do not let them bait you.

She brushes her hair back, putting on her very best poker face. It got them out of San Antonio unscathed, it can sure as fuck get her out of this meeting with at least a shred of dignity.

[Balance Without Fault] [go ahead, sarita – jamie was just OOCing it!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Sarita takes the 8-Ball. And believe it or not, she actually considers the thing for a moment before she speaks.

“I really like this idea of Kin and a Sept Liasons. It’s thinking outside the box, which is something our people don’t do often enough. And it’s my job…the job of all of my Auspice…to encourage thinking outside of the box, finding new ways to make the war work. This is exactly one of those things, so I’m a fan.”

“As to who…I’ve heard great things about Imogen. I have absolutely no doubt that they’re true. But I don’t know her. I’ve never met her, or seen her around the Brotherhood during my admittedly short time here. That’s not saying she’s negligent, and certainly I’m not here all the time. But we have a lot of kin that come in and out of here. Even the amount of time I’ve been here, I’ve seen a lot come and go. We need someone who’s regularly in contact with the kin and has their ear to the ground, and has ideas. Maybe not always the best of ideas, but that’s part of why they’ll be working with others, Garou AND Kin. Getting the right ideas pushed forward, and the well-meaning but not well thought-out ones squashed. Which, to be honest, seems to be what’s been happening.”

She twirls the magic 8-Ball like a basketball for a moment, staring at it, then looks up. “Amunet’s done the legwork. She’s got her ear to the ground, and she’s got the drive. She’s got the right ideas, even if some of the wrong are there too sometimes, and she’s willing to listen and hear other people’s opinions, take them into account, and learn from what hasn’t worked to make the right things work better. I think she’s the right person for the job.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[spins on her finger. Y’know, Harlem Globetrotter style. Since “twirls” don’t make no sense. :P]]

[Joey] [Dibs!]

[Danicka Musil] [Dibs, as well.]

[Balance Without Fault] [joey –> danicka]

[Joey] Joey holds out her hands for the magic eight ball, catches it easily if it gets tossed her way. Before she speaks, she grins at her auspicemate, would tip her hat if she were wearing one.

“My associate raises some good points. As for stickin’ around, Imogen’s a rock. She’s been here since long before I got here, an’ I’m pretty sure she’ll still be standing’ when the world’s finally fallin’ to pieces. That said,” she tosses the eight ball from one hand to the other, “Sarita’s right. She’d be a good candidate an’ all, but she’s not here. She’s out there, helpin’ clean up after our messes, but still.

“So how ’bout someone who is?” Holding the magic eight ball with one hand, once again she uses it to point, this time to the Shadow Lord kinswoman by Lukas’ side. “I suggest Danicka. She’s been around a long while, an’ though I don’t know ‘er much beyond her reputation, she’s always been nice an’ respectful.” When it seems the woman in question would like the ball next, Joey doesn’t toss it directly to her. Remembering the earlier incident, she instead lobs it underhand to Lukas.

[Joey] [oh god random apostrophe should make that “standin'” please don’t mistake her for Hunter!]

[Wyrmbreaker] Lukas catches the eightball and, since he has it anyway, speaks up.

“I second that,” he says, “and not because she’s my mate. Because she’s spoken sense every time she opened her mouth. Because she’s respected by the spirits, and pays them respects in return. And because a year ago she did the legwork and set up a coalition before handing it over to the leadership of another kin — who promptly disappeared.

“She’s proved herself. If she wants the job,” and he looks at Danicka for a moment here, considering, “I’d listen to her.”

He passes it over to her.

[Matthieu] [I need to AFK a little bit hopefully Matt isn’t needed for the next half hour!]

[Balance Without Fault] [see you in a bit dude!]

[Joey] [it’s so weird seeing “dude” next to BWF’s name]

[Jackson Montgomery] [[‘Homey’ would have been even better.]]

[Honor’s Compass] [CAN KATE SPEAK. …oops, capsrage.]

[Balance Without Fault] [danicka’s got it, unless kate wants to snatch it out of her hands!]

[Honor’s Compass] [*steeples fingers* …okay, not really. But Kate does want to add something.]

[Nash] [Rage, rage against the locking of the caps.]

[Balance Without Fault] [Fencing Fox just IMed me to check on the proceedings. She wants to say Daoi would have been present, but she has to go to work, and wanted to second either Imogen or Danicka. Also, she is vehemently against Amunet, Neda, Carter and Mickey. So. Consider her NPCed!]

[Joey] [Do not go gentle into that good caps?]

[Danicka Musil] When she initially held up her hand to signal that she’d like the 8-ball to be passed to her when it was her turn, Joey had not spoken yet. And Danicka had opinions on both Amunet and Imogen. The truth is, what she has to say about one was touched on — but not expounded on — by Hunter. What she had to say about Imogen has been said twice now.

And then Lukas joins in, because Joey the athlete decided not to hurl a hard plastic ball at Danicka’s head, and Danicka turns her head to look at the Ahroun Elder. Those who can see past the curtain of her hair over her cheek can see quite plainly that it is, in fact, a Look.

By the time the Magic 8-Ball that is representing the right to speak uninterrupted in this gathering comes into her hands, Danicka’s had to completely reform what she wants to say. Nice and respectful, the Rotagar calls her. The Rotagar who wasn’t here when she lied, smiling, to the face of the woman who is now the Philodox Elder and an Adren. The Rotagar wasn’t here when Danicka whipped around and reamed out a Modi in public

then promptly left town, lest he come after her. Eeek.

Danicka takes a breath. “I think Dr. Slaughter, if she’s willing to do a job she doesn’t yet know exists, would be a more than adequate choice. She’s abrasive at best, but she’s also proven herself more than any other Kin in the city. She would be capable, if not sentimental. One of the first times I met her, she turned and fired on Spirals so that the rest of us could run. As cold as she can be, it would be wrong to suggest that she hasn’t proven herself willing to fight and die for all of us. As dismissive as she can be, and absence tonight notwithstanding, she holds more respect in the eyes of Garou than anyone else.”

A pause. She does not address Amunet as a candidate — either what she wants to say has already been said, or does not need to be said. “As for my own nomination, I’m flattered.” A beat. She knew easily what she had to say about Imogen. It is not, however, easy for Danicka to talk about herself. Not with this many people, and so many of them Garou, listening. Not with her own reputation — and, frankly, Lukas’s — affected by what comes out of her mouth. She takes another deep breath. “I suppose I accept. I would be honored to do my best, if chosen.”

Chosen, she says. Not elected. Her eyes are on Balance Without Fault, but only meeting his for a moment before — ever so respectfully — dropping to his cheekbone instead. She offers the ball out to someone who can hand it to Katherine, who has lifted her hand. Danicka does not lob anything, thank you.

[Honor’s Compass] Perhaps in times gone past, Lukas might tense to see his pack-mate; her pale eyes firmly fixed on his mate request permission from the Grand Elder to address their peers and other Kinfolk alike. Perhaps he’d clench his teeth in desperate hopes she was not about to open her mouth and opine about — well, who ever knew — but while the Silver Fang Elder studies the Shadow Lord Kinfolk nominated alongside a Fianna Kinswoman absent tonight — she does not do so with apparent glorying malice.

Rather, there’s a certain amount of quiet reflection to be had, in all honesty.

“While I respect Doctor Slaughter’s capacities a great deal, I find that I do not believe, knowing her only, I admit, as passingly as I do, that she would willingly take up this position. Imogen Slaughter does not particularly revel in long periods of association around our kind.

My feeling is she endures such, as often as she may foster relationships with some.” Here Katherine’s eyes tick to Kora.

“So it would be my vote to elect Danicka Musil, and add that while she has suffered — setbacks, tonight — and needs to be more controlled in expressing her opinion, Amunet should not be ignored for this, either. She has put in considerable time and effort, and the last thing this Sept needs or wants are Kinfolk who, feeling excluded or resentful, get themselves into trouble.

Work together, please. I have seen too many Kinfolk of my tribe and without who wind up lost, gone or simply dead.

I do not wish to witness it again.”

[Balance Without Fault] [any more dibbers? i’m gonna start typing.]

[Balance Without Fault] The magic eightball makes it way around the room, sometimes passed, sometimes tossed. Eventually it comes back to Balance Without Fault, who catches it with a sort of ease that suggests once upon a time he might’ve played ball for his highschool.

Once he has it, he turns it over in his hands for a moment. Then he looks at the kin who have, by and large, stood so silent thus far.

“This is your representative I’m choosing. Any thoughts?”

[Balance Without Fault] [i’ma give people a couple min to call dibs, and then we’re rollin’ on.]

[Derek Anderson] Derek watched and listened, silent. He didn’t say anything or reacted to any of the nominated canditates. Whoever they chose was fine by him. After all, he doesn’t need much and if something come up, well he could always reach Katherine. He was sad for those whom the old ways weren’t working but it was for him.

So why change something that isn’t broken? No reason. He was just there as a witness, because all kin were asked to come. And he stayed in the main area for it was disrecpectful to go awya in the kitchen while business that touched everyone was discussed.

He hasn’said anything but he had been there and won’t be able to complain later if things turn out badly.

[Jackson Montgomery] Jackson looks up. “Since this is my chance to speak up…I would choose Amy. I only vaguely know Danicka, no offenser. I’ve been working with Amy, and so have others who weren’t able to make it here. And I believe that someone who is involved with the current make-up should be doing it.”

Not very wordy, but it gets his point across.

[Nash] [Thanks for the scene, all! I’m told I have to go partake in a threeway or something, idk.]

[Quinn] [I’m sorry, guys, I can’t stay up any longer, I have to be up for work in a ridiculously small amount of time. Both of my PCs would stick it out until the end, and then disappear into the night. Good night!]

[Balance Without Fault] Balance lets that silence hang, his eyes moving from kin to kin, all around the room. It stretches on. It gets a little uncomfortable. It gets a lot uncomfortable. Then the Grand Elder puts the eightball down on the arm of his chair again. Stands.

“I have,” he says, “the utmost respect for Imogen Slaughter. She very nearly has the renown of a Cliath Ahroun — and it’s no secret that the spirits do not pay attention to our kin as they do our Garou. To gather such a reputation under such odds is no small accomplishment, wolves and kin of the Maelstrom, and she is to be respected.

“However,” he turns directly to Hunter and Kora, “it must also be said that Dr. Imogen Slaughter, while faultlessly dedicated and loyal to our cause, has never been one to involve herself too deeply in the Sept’s politics. Or, as far as I could tell, one who wanted to do so. She’s not here tonight because she’s out there doing what she does best — working for the cause in her own way, on her own time, without our interference. And that’s fine. The work she does justifies that. Her renown stands alone.

“Bear in mind that I’m not dictating the leader of the coalition tonight. That’s up to the kin, and that’s yet to be decided. If you want my opinion, Imogen Slaughter would be a very fine choice. However, this role we discuss tonight, the role she’s been nominated for, is one of mediation, of elbow-rubbing, of talking, of listening, of liaising. And I agree with Sarita, and with the Philodox and Ragabash Elders. She may not be suited to this. She may not even want it. She’s not here to decide for herself, and I won’t pin this title on her in her absence.

“On the other hand, Danicka Musil’s name carries weight in this Sept. She is known for her wisdom, and for glory. She’s tried before to organize the kin, and she’s proven her ability tonight to speak calmly, and with sense, even in the face of controversy and dissent. I agree with the Auspice Elders who have spoken. She deserves this role, and I trust her with it.

“If you accept this duty, Danicka, it’s yours.”

A pause. Then he turns to the final contender.

“And that leaves Amunet Knezevic. Amunet, I agree with your sister, Sarita, and your friend, Jackson, when they say your heart is in the right place. You want this position, I can see it. You want to do well.

“I can’t ignore that you’ve caused no small amount of controversy tonight; that some of your ideas were flawed, and others were borderline insane. I can’t trust you to speak alone for the kin. Not when one kin has spoken vehemently against you; not when, at times tonight, you had trouble explaining your own actions. I’m sorry.

“But the Philodox Elder speaks with wisdom: we should reward those who try hardest. We are not,” a wry nod to the Shadow Lord contingent, “a Shadow Lord Sept, that counts everything by results alone. We do not disregard heartfelt attempts, no matter how futile. After all, it might be argued our entire war is one heroic, futile attempt.

“So here’s what I’ll do. While Danicka Musil is the Sept Liaison — if she’s willing, and if you’re willing — you may serve as her assistant. You may appear where she does, attend what meetings she attends. You can listen, and learn. In time, if your elders feel it appropriate, you may be given duties and responsibilities of your own interfacing between Garou and Kin.

“Will you accept this duty?”

[Amunet Knezevic] She waits. There isn’t anything to be said, after all, until Danicka has her say.

[Danicka Musil] A deep breath is taken before Danicka answers, and she is not surprised Amunet does not want to speak til she has. There’s no need to wait for the Magic 8-Ball this time; it’s done being passed around. She’s sitting up straight on the barstool she chose at the start of all this, and nods. “I would be honored,” she says, which is only what she said before. But this does confirm it: she’s willing.

“I would be glad to work with either Dr. Slaughter or Amunet, whoever leads the coalition Amunet’s reforming, as a colleague who will help me know what issues the Kinfolk need communicated to the Sept. I would also be more than happy to have Amunet as an… assistant, if she is amenable to it.” There’s a pause, and then she turns her head slightly, looking at Amunet. “But before you answer, I do want you to understand one thing very clearly. If you decided you wanted to assist me, I would need you to not only help me, but trust me.” A beat. She stops mincing words. “And frankly, obey me. Not as an automaton, not without a voice, not without respectful discussion, but ultimately, as a subordinate. If you don’t believe you are willing to place yourself in that position, then …be my colleague only as a member of, or leader of, the coalition.”

[Amunet Knezevic] He would be so disappointed in you right now…

She nods once then smiles, directing her reply to BWF and sounding a little too much like her Shadow Lord mate in her perfectly enunciated reply. “I will of course serve the Nation in any fashion that you see fit, Rhya. Thank you for the opportunity.”

[Starla] Starla’s still there…. despite someone going to bed, this is still happening. It ain’t a dream. She blinks, looks at the proceedings that have somehow woken her up in the chair and sits and stares at all of them. The corners of her mouth twisting and flattening suddenly.

[Balance Without Fault] Balance shakes his head quietly. “It’s not an order, Amunet. It’s a duty that you can take up or lay down as you wish. If you want it — if you can live with what Danicka just said, and with the boundaries I’ve delineated — then it’s yours.

“Otherwise, you may reject it without dishonor.”

[Amunet Knezevic] Her eyes flicker to Danicka, then back. “I feel as if I should at the very least make sure that Miss Musil is up to speed on what’s being worked currently. Perhaps we should revisit the question of my continuing role once the preliminary details have been addressed.”

[Danicka Musil] Her brows draw together, her forehead wrinkled in a vague look of confusion, but Danicka doesn’t interrupt.

[Balance Without Fault] “As you wish. If you want the role, let Danicka know. Otherwise, I hope you do continue the work you’ve begun — albeit in a more moderated manner.

“Now then. Let’s wrap up.

“Matthieu Mirror’s Whisper, you are our Kin Liaison. I suggest you make use of your Galliard talent to announce this far and wide. Danicka Musil, you are our Sept Liaison. I’d suggest getting in touch with your fellow kin to spread the word.

“Together, the two of you are responsible for maintaining an open line of communication between Garou and kin, for keeping one another up to speed on the developments on both sides, and for being the first point of mediation in conflicts between Garou and kin. You should interact with individual Tribal Alphas, with the Philodox Alpha, with individual kin, and with each other. In dire circumstances, you may come before me, but it’s my hope that you’ll be able to settle most issues independently, or with the assistance of your Septmates.

“Furthermore, Matthieu, you’re responsible for attending kin coalition meetings as a listener and as a voice for the Garou. Danicka, you will be present at the Cracking of the Bone as a witness and, if necessary, as a voice for the kin. Your mate will stake his honor on your conduct and safety.

“I suggest the two of you meet with each other soon after this meeting and better delineate your working relationship. Here’s hoping it’ll be a long one.”

Addressing the gathered, then:

“If there’s nothing else, wolves and kin of the Maelstrom, thank you for coming. I think we’ve taken significant steps forward tonight, and I’m looking forward to seeing how this kin coalition pans out. There’s still food in the kitchen, if you want to take some home — otherwise, I’ll bid you a good night.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Sarita stands and looks at the Galliard Elder. “Before you go, Matthieu…we need to talk.” The look she fixes on him is a direct one. It’s not angry, but there is something a bit…intense in it. “Just give me a moment.”

She makes her way over to Amy, reaching out to touch the other’s shoulder. “Hey…”

[Amunet Knezevic] “Hey” She smiles brightly, leaning to give Sarita a quick hug. “Thank you. That was very nice of you.”

[Balance Without Fault] [hey guys, i’m bowing BWF out. thanks to everyone who stayed for the whole, 9-hour shebang! @_@ that was a lot of fun and pretty intense at times, but overall reminded me why i don’t do the moots live *LOL*]

[Jackson Montgomery] Jackson waits until it looks like they’re getting ready to go, and he looks up. He nods to the Trueborn around and moves to head out with his fellow Gaian kin.

[[Thanks Damon!]]

[Kyle] He’s been quiet the entire time. Not that he’d have been heard clearly but he really didn’t have much to say. Casually he stands and while he walks stretches out a kink from his back. Stops near Amunet and gives that casual smile but the concern in his eyes is obvious.
“You doing ok?”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “Oh, shut the fuck up.” She grins a bit, leaning into the hug. “It wasn’t nice, it was the truth.” She leans in, murmuring in Spanish.

[Matthieu] Matthieu listens quietly and nods his head.”I should like to speak to both Danicka and Amunet as soon as that much can be arranged. I look forward to seeing the direction this will head.”

[Leon Davenport] Leon looked at Sarita when he spoke top his Alha and he grinned. He had a good idea what the Strider want to talk to him about. Well, he didn’t care. There was nothing there and if hse pressed the issue, he hope Matthieu would tell her to be reasonable.

He doubted she would. “Have a good night Matthieu” he say to the Galliard and start to move away, unless his Alpha wnat him around for his talk with the Strider

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] ~sp~ “You made me very proud tonight. Don’t you dare let yourself think anything differently. I love you.”
to Amunet Knezevic

[Hunter] [Hunter bailed for the kitchen awhile ago! I’m bailing now too, cya later all thanks for the scene.. or saga.. I don’t think scene does it justice.]

[Amunet Knezevic] “I’m fine, Kyle. Thank you. It’s good to see you again.” The smile doesn’t so much as flicker, turned from Kyle back to Sarita as she nods in response to whatever was said to her.

[Derek Anderson] The meeting was over, he needed to get home. He texted Kristen, asking her if she felt like joining him at his place. He bid farewell to Lukas and Katherine, as well as Danicka since she was beside the Shadow Lord Adren “Congatulation”he tell her

Sarita and Amy gets both a nod and he heads out

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She sighs a bit, looking concerned. She gives Amy a hug once more. “I need to talk to Matthieu. Let’s do something in the next day or two, okay?”

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [Thanks all! If nobody needs my PCs, I’ma say they both wander out. :)]

[Amunet Knezevic] “Of course. Come by the condo.” She hugs her sister, then lets her go and moves toward Stefan as he emerges from upstairs.

[Danicka Musil] Danicka nods, rather simply, to Balance Without Fault, a gesture of respect and perhaps gratitude, though not for the position so much as the trust it implies. When he closes the meeting, she slides off of her barstool and walks over to Matthieu before people can stir up and depart too quickly.

She takes a small pad of paper out of her bag and writes down her number, handing it over to him. “You can call me whenever you need to. Weekends and evenings are best, due to classes, but I’ll make myself available to your schedule.”

To Amunet, when she makes her way over there, she gives a small smile. “If you change your mind, let me know. But you have my contact information. It’s now literally my job to make sure you and the rest of the coalition are involved, informed, and heard. So don’t hesitate.”

Making sure the Tribal Alphas and other Kin know how to get in touch with her and even know who she is will wait another day, though, it seems. Danicka moves back towards Lukas and, catching Katherine’s eye briefly as she does so, gives the other woman a small smile, perhaps coming with a little more difficulty than the one she gave to Amunet. A small nod. The meaning there is even harder to read than the Look she gave Lukas earlier.

Katherine will understand, though. They haven’t always had the best and brightest relationship, these two.

She leans over to Lukas then and exhales as she gathers up her coat, saying something quietly to him.

[Matthieu] He stands slowly and nods his head back to Sarita. His attention on her before he looks to the others.”Let’s go speak away from prying ears then shall we?”He asks her as he begins to lead her in the direction of the Kitchen.

[Kyle] “You’re busy. I’ll catch you around the tracks I guess.”
Looks to both Sarita and Amunet as he casually makes his way for the kitchen to grab a snack and head up stairs.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She nods to Matthieu once Amy is gone, looking to him. “Sounds good.” He moves to follow along behind him.

[Matthieu] He walks with her into the other room and offers u a little smile.”What seems to be the problem here?”
to Sarita Ecos de la Risa

[Wyrmbreaker] The gathering is breaking up; Lukas catches Sarita’s eye as she moves off with Matthieu. The look is — complex. Some touch of compassion; some hint of apology; mostly, though, just a sort of recognition and acknowledgment. Of their relationships, perhaps. To each other. To their kin.

Then he’s turning, bending to hear what Danicka is saying while he reaches for his own coat.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “The problem is simple.” She’s angry now. She’s letting herself show it. Not raging…she does not not even have the capacity to frenzy, except in odd situations. Not even furious. But she’s angry. “Why is one of my tribe’s kin playing footsie with Leon’s knee?”
to Matthieu

[Wyrmbreaker] Whatever it is she says, Lukas laughs quietly; murmurs something back, then takes her coat from her and holds it while she slides into it.

Then he’s lifting his own, sliding it over his shoulders. The gathering has dissipated; he nods to the few that remain as he departs with his mate.

[Danicka Musil] [Thank you guys — those of you still in the room! For the RP. :] I honestly had a blast.]

[Matthieu] “Miss McCalister and I are old friends… She and I are close. I cannot say why she and Leon might have been playing footsies though I do know they have had a short dialogue once or twice. He confessed this to me himself… In fact he’s been quite responsible even going so far is to get my permission simply to associate with other kin.”He smiles a little.”I don’t see the harm, I would not let my beta harm a single hair on your Kin’s head. He’s been careful not to cross any distinct boundaries. She and Leon, as I understand, are little more than passing friends.”He looks up at her.”If anything I suspect it was me Gina was visiting Leon happening to be by my side was simply a matter of fate. He is my Beta, as a result I would not let him do anything to break our agreement.”He says back to her.

“However I understood that it was only your Sister whom Leon was allowed not contact at all and required to keep a distance from. Leon has been doing quite well to tell me who he has talked to and his reasons for doing so and I assure you he is not up to no good with your kin.”He says with a reassuring little smile.
to Sarita Ecos de la Risa

[Wyrmbreaker] [i’m out too! thanks again, folks! i had fun too :] ]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “I know you’re close, Matthieu. Gina’s alluded to a Silver Fang who wanted to take her on as a mate. I can do the math, it’s either you, Kate or Ivan and she’s not Kate’s type. So I’m guessing I’m on the right side of the 50/50 odds here. And I don’t have a problem with that. Gina, Amy, Kyle…they can hang out with whoever they want, they can–and I’m not implying here–date and sleep with whoever they want. I’m okay with that. But sometimes, I have to step in. Because I wouldn’t be doing my job as tribal elder if not.”

She frowns. “I want to be clear here. I bet he’s doing a wonderful job of not assaulting kinfolk. Faboo. But until someone challenges me to claim her, she’s my responsibility, and let me be perfectly clear…she is not to be anywhere near Leon. Period point-blank. And if you won’t stop it, I will tell her so myself, which will force me to tell her why.”
to Matthieu

[Matthieu] He smiles just a Hint though he says nothing in regard to whether or not she might be correct in his guess.”Gina is my friend… We’ve been friends since before I met either of you, and I would imagine we always will. It seems like a near impossibility for me to keep Leon and Gina from, themselves, coming into contact. I can ask Leon to obey this but Gina is a social creature and likely to seek him out. It seems like I would be attempting to do the impossible here by only informing one side that the other is not allowed to see them. Still if you are going to be insistent on the matter I can attempt to speak to him and hopefully the matter can be resolved until such point as you change your mind.”He then continues.

“I should also mention a matter of some concern for me. It would appear that the Alpha of Defiance has caught wind of this little matter and he has set out upon a smear campaign against my Beta in relation to other kin.”He says before peeking up at her.”I would like that if this matter is to be buried it be buried… Having the Alphas of other packs walking around carrying judges does not put this matter behind us. It goes, both, against the spirit of our agreement and shows a lack of Honor on the part of another Garou. This matter ended with our arrangement and other Garou have no place involving themselves to any degree.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “I agree with that. And I will try to talk to Hunter. As I told you in our initial talk, he knew before that point. I can’t make people un-know something. He hates Leon. Frankly, I kind of do, too, but not the point. I will talk to him and see what I can do. You talk to Leon and see what you can do. Hopefully we’ll both be successful.”

She frowns. “She doesn’t think so, but I like Gina. I care about her, and I worry about her. If she would let me in, she’d see that. But I get it. Just…” She shakes her head, frowning and looking away. “Take care of her, please. I know you will, but I have to say it.”

[Matthieu] “I am going to give you my honest opinion here and I know you are not going to like it but I must give it anyway. I feel that you are not willing to leave this matter behind… I hear in your voice a bitter deep seeded hatred for my pack mate for which you will never forgive him.”He shrugs his shoulders.

“I was not there to pass judgement on what he did to your sister but when we challenge or another suffers punishment in response to his or her crimes we leave the matter alone. When the challenge is settled the challengers leave the ring and their grudges behind them.”

“Neither you nor Burnout appears willing to do this. I have asked my Packmate on my honor to accept a deal which I felt was in the best interest of all involved. He has trusted me and done well to show by example that he is following through with his punishment. He is taking the high road and walking away with his punishment with his head held high. Where as you continue to brood and hold him in neglect for a matter which should no longer be a concern.”

He stops walking and turns to face her.”What you are doing here is not in Gina’s best interest. What you are doing here is attempting to use what power you have to hurt my Packmate to do just that. I do not like it, and I do not care for it one bit… But you are the eldest of your tribe and so long as you continue to be I will respect your wishes. This matter cannot be resolved until everyone involved lets go and stops holding a grudge. This is not honor it is vengeance and it’s only going to hurt everyone who is involved if it continues along this path.”

“If you want my advice, and you might not, what you need to do is let this matter go. This kind of thing happens in our society on a regular basis. Continuing to holda lapse in judgment against my Beta harms everyone it affects. It will breed his mistrust and dislike for you and it will continue to breed your own dislike and mistrust for him. In the meantime Gina is caught in the middle and Burnout simply has no place in the matter in the first place. Still it is not my place to decide. I will tell my Beta that he is to have no contact with Gina whatsoever and I will work to keep them from maintaining any degree of contact.”

“If that is all? I will be on my way.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “No, I’m not Matthieu. I’m doing it because even if you trust him, I don’t. Did you know that a kinfolk of his sat for like, two days before she got cleansed after being attacked by a Wyrm thing?”

She frowns and shakes her head. “Think I’m doing it for whatever reason you like. You can dislike me for it, Leon and Gina can hate me. It’s no skin off my fine ass. Leon made it clear that after our agreement? Yours and mine? His hatred of me was sealed in stone. He refuses to get over it. I don’t care about him as long as he’s not in direct danger of my kinfolk. If I wanted to harm him, I have ways, and you know I do.”

A pause. “Also, just to make sure…you said you would be asking Kate about giving him training under a Philodox. How’s that going?”

[Matthieu] “That is a failing of the society in which we live and not necessarily a matter that speaks ill of his character.”He then nodded his head.”My Beta feels betrayed… He feels the matter had been resolved and that it was not until much later that the matter was brought back up. Indeed if you and Leon had an arrangement, and I believe you might have, then it was a somewhat dishonorable manner to approach his Alpha later on in an attempt to see him punished again twice for the same crime. Now… he is being punished a third time by asking that he have no contact with a friend of his.”He says back to her.”That would make three times you have punished him for the same crime. I am not a Half Moon but I do not need to be a half moon to see the unbalance in this matter.”

“I belong to a house who has long prided itself on fairness and honor. I do not feel that my Beta is being given a fair shake in this matter. We are, however, and honorable pack and Leon will do as you command. You are Gina’s tribal elder and you have every right to ban them from contacting one another.”He then nods his head and smiles.”I will address that matter just as soon as I can catch her while she is free. In the meantime we are sizing up a few qualified candidates.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “We had no agreement. He threw two grand in my metaphorical face and said he’d leave her alone. I never told him we were all good after that. I’ll make that clear. And I don’t consider Gina being kept from him to be a punishment for him. I consider it looking out for my kinfolk’s welfare. When I’m satisfied that he’s been through his anger management training, then it’s all good. Until then, I’m sorry but I still don’t trust him because he hasn’t had the opportunity to improve himself.”

A little nod. “Let me know when you have. I’ll pass along the message that you’d like to talk to her if you like. I won’t say why; I’ll let you handle that. Other than that…yes, we’re done.”

[Matthieu] He nods his head.”Alright then if you could convey the message it would be helpful. She’s a very busy woman these days.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “Will do. Have a good one, Matthieu.” A nod, and she makes her way out.