Coming In At The Tail End of the Wake

[Rory] She watches as he prepares the joint, green eyes following each movement, and how quickly he does it. Then he slides it over to her, and the bites her lower lip, anxiously. It takes a moment, and then she reaches out timidly for the lighter, the joint, as if expecting one or both of them to snatch it away and say that they were just kidding, ha ha ha the mule gets nothing… When they don’t, she peeks up through her curls, and offers a little smile.

She lifts the joint to her lips, and sets flame to the other end, lighting up. She exhales the first drag quickly, before taking a deeper one and holding. She passes it along, and manages only to cough a little bit. She’s been practicing somewhere…

[Quinn] Both women watch Hunter work, one more intently than the other. Resting her elbows on the bar, she leans forward and waits.

Rory gets to do the honors of lighting up and taking the first drag. When she only coughs a little, Quinn smiles. “See? You’ll be a pro in no time.” It’s her turn next. Like Hunter, this is something she’s practiced with, but was done more in her sordid youth than in her adult years. The last time she smoked was at Christmas.

The fact that it’s awakened makes her wary, though. She holds it a moment, looks at Hunter with brow raised. Then she shrugs. No guts, no glory. The drag she takes is shallow, has her brow tensing, and then she passes it next to Hunter. Blowing out the smoke, she says, “Whoaholy crap.”

[goin’ afk for a bit, post around me!]

[Hunter] The joint gets passed around. Rory does exceptionally well considering her previous claim that Howard had laughed at her coughing. There is no laughter from either the Fianna kinfolk or the BoneGnawer Ahroun. They are all friendly smiles and silent waiting for now, soon there will be laughter though. It can’t be helped. That’s half the fun in it.

Quinn takes the joint and looks at it sceptically, Hunter can’t blame her, this shit is rough as balls. But she’s a big girl and she takes her puff regardless, uttering a smoke filled whoaholy crap.

Hunter doesn’t hold the joint between index finger and thumb, he just holds it like a cigarette, like he has done this far too many times to warrant a unique style. It is lifted lazily to his lips and he sucks on it, puffs twice then blows out a cloud of smoke. His eyes close up into triangles and his lips curve into amusement.

“Forgot how fucked up this shit is,” he says once he has caught his breath. The joint gets passed on.

[Rory] They aren’t laughing at her. She smiles, softly, her head tucked to hide it behind her curls, as she reaches for to take the pass from Hunter again. She inhales deep, holds it, and exhales again, her eyes closing as she feels the awakened weed work it’s way through her system. She sighs contentedly, something very few people have ever heard, and passes it again.

While they take another toke, she reaches down to the guitar leaning against her hip, removing it from it’s case, and letting the cloth cover fall to the floor. She lays the guitar across her knee, and strums it lazily, pausing to tune the strings carefully, like this is the most precious thing she owns.

Because it is.

She’s not good – she only knows one song, really, though she practices long and hard at the five chords she knows. She has experimented in putting them together differently, and discovered to her shock, it sometimes sounds like the music that Ruarc left her on her ipod to learn from. She’s practiced till her fingers bled, and then practiced some more.

All for tonight. She glances up, to make sure she’s not offending anyone, and then bends her head again. This time when she starts to play, a very decently passable Danny Boy results.

[Hunter] The weed has gone circles now, twice, back to Hunter and he holds the little of what is left in the joint while he watches Rory tune her guitar. It’s mellowing, his head feels lazy and his gaze turns to Quinn as Rory begins to sing but there are no raised eyebrows, no questioning glance. He just looks at her and smiles then returns his attention to the bard for this evening.

He has heard the song before, once or twice. It’s not really his thing, or so he would have thought, but he enjoys it. Sitting in his stool with his back up against the bar and incidentally to Quinn though she stands more between them than directly behind the Gnawer. Occasionally he glances at her over his shoulder and when the joint is finished he licks his fingertips then puts it out before placing it on next to his drink.

His drink which never seems to empty.. every time he or the Metis begins to near the bottom of their glass, they miraculously find it refilled by the kinswoman.

He raises it in salute at the end of the song.

“To Howard!”

[Rory] She doesn’t sing. She plays. She can’t sing – or rather, she refuses to try, because she cannot get her words straight, and cannot correct it because she doesn’t hear the mistakes. She’s smiled at, but she doesn’t see it, concentrating instead on placing her fingers correctly, hitting the chords, and strumming with careful timing, and a delicate touch.

The last note lingers, and then Hunter toasts, and she smiles shyly, sadly, tears in her eyes. She doesn’t look up enough for them to be seen, instead reaching for her beer and lifting it in toast. “Howard.” The word is soft, but no less heartfelt, as she takes a drink.

[Quinn] Despite how carefully Quinn drags off the joint, her physiology being different from the Gnawer and especially the Fiann means it still hits her more strongly. She feels giddy and lightheaded first. It doesn’t stop her making sure that glasses remain full.

Rory retrieves her guitar, tunes it, and plays. She’s no expert, her skill comes from hard work and dedication before natural ability, but the song is lovely all the same. Leaning into the bar, Quinn smiles. When Hunter looks over his shoulder at her, her eyes are for the redhead, but they glance to him occasionally.

When Rory finishes, Quinn straightens, lifts her glass to join them in a toast. “Howard,” she echoes, and drinks.

Setting the glass down, she sighs, content. “Do you know any other songs, Rory?”

[Tabitha Reese] (Where are they?)

[Rory] [At the Winchester, all seated at the bar]

[Tabitha Reese] The Fury looks ill at ease as she makes her way into the building, moving to the side as soon as she enters in order to keep her back to a wall as she looks around the place slowly.

[Rory] She wrinkles her nose slightly, and takes another drink of her never emptied beer, and sets the mug carefully on the bartop again. “Lust jearning…”

But she does have a couple other songs that she can play passably well. Celtic in nature of course, because that is what Ruarc left her – an MP3 player with instructions and songs that she’s listened too near constantly since he left. It turns out that she has a pretty good ear, and can pick out other things as well. It’s amazing how many songs one can put together with five simple chords…

So she plays. She plays everything Ruarc taught her, everything she’s taught herself.

For Howard, she plays.
[…somewhere, he’s laughing at her…]

[Quinn] It’s difficult to enter The Winchester unnoticed on a normal night. Tonight, the bar is closed only to family, to remember and celebrate a fallen…brother? Friend? Heir of the Ruined Day was different things to different people. Regardless, they’re here to remember him.

So when the Black Fury enters, and tries to keep her back to the wall, she sidles over to the booths, and the bar’s owner, the pretty Fianna kinfolk behind the bar, smiles to her. Lifts a hand to invite her to join them at the bar. By now, she’s the only one left of the establishment’s employees still around. A glass is filled with beer, like it’s some sort of pre-established menu for the night (it is), and set before an empty bar stool.

“Hey,” she greets. Rory is still just learning, and Quin nods.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] The VW Bus pulls up outside the Winchester, Stephen Lynch’s “For the Ladies” cutting off only when the engine dies. The perpetually-grinning Strider–who tonight at least has the good sense to not be grinning while she attends a wake–slides out of the driver’s side and flicks the remnants of a joint away as she shuts the door. She comes around the van, looking the Winchester over as she approaches. There’s a bit of a smile but nothing more as she slips inside.

[Hunter] The toast is had, the brew is drunketh, and Hunter is high as a mutherfuckin’ kite. He shouts Howard’s name loudly in the toast and slams his empty vessel down upon the bar top. The tears aren’t missed, they just aren’t allowed.

“No crying here!” He says to Rory, then looks to Quinn, back to Rory, back to Quinn. “What are we gonna do about this? I think… yeah!.. you got another song Rory?”

And she does have another song. Excellent.

Hunter gets up to dance. Or what would be dancing if he didn’t spot another Garou wandering into the place. She is unknown.. wait.. no he knows her.. maybe.. He narrows green eyes on the Fury, squinting. It isn’t because he’s blind.. well it is sort of. Everything is a little blurry. “Hey!”

[Tabitha Reese] “Hey…” She looks Quinn over quickly, relaxing a fraction when she recognizes the girl from the gathering house. “Is this… I’m not sure if….” Her shoulders hunch a bit, hand jammed even harder into her pockets.

[Adamidas] No one knows where Adam comes from. Sometimes, people love each other very much. They do things. They have babies. Those babies become children like Alethea Adamidas.

Which means that children come from the depths of the umbra bringing god-knows-what with them. Today, she enters as she usually does.

With a loud pop and exiting the women’s room.

… It’s good to be Adam.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She looks around once she gets through the door, getting the lay of the land. She recognizes Tabitha of course, as well as Rory who she met the other night and Hunter. Quinn she knows only very vaguely, and Adamidas she doesn’t know at all. They all get little nods though, with smiles to those she’s met before she’s moving toward the bar.

[Quinn] More people are entering the bar, including, thankfully for Quinn, her redhaired bartender, Tom. The tall Fiann enters almost on Sarita’s heels, waves to Quinn.

“I forgot…are you high?” he asks, brow quirked, and he looks at Hunter, then Rory playing her guitar.

“Yes,” says the tall pretty Fianna kinswoman behind the bar. Quinn gathers up her belongings, shrugging into her coat as Tom heads back to grab something from behind the bar, as well. As she passes him, Quinn gives him a high five, which is actually more like a wrestler tagging in a teammate to deliver the finishing blow. “Close up for me, will you, hon? I’ll owe you so big.” Banter is exchanged, and Quinn leaves her bar, exiting out into the chilly winter night.

[sorry, guys, i’m falling asleep at the keyboard. Tom will be your bartender, info on The Winchester’s in my gallery. if you break anything i will find you! and i will wag a finger in your face menacingly! thanks for the RP and good night!]

[Rory] Hunter says no crying, and Rory does what Rory usually does – she blushes, and protests. “Not.”

Then she shrugs it off and plays what she knows while Hunter pretends to dance, but really eyes those that enter the bar. Quinn leaves, and Rory’s fingers soon fall still, having played everything she knows already. So she simply holds the guitar like it’s her only friend [..it is..] and drinks. Things are a bit fuzzy, thanks to all she’s partaken of tonight, but it doesn’t make her any more likely to speak when she doesn’t have too.

Though hunter is treated to one of her very rare smiles…

[Hunter] Quinn begins to leave, Hunter would be following her movements but he’s stuck looking at the new comers. Tabitha gets a once over, followed by Adam and Sarita.

“Sup ladies, Yo Adam! Hows my fav’ greek home-girl doin?”

But he catches flight of the Fianna kin disappearing from the bar and Hunter pauses to watch her leave. His gaze goes back to Rory just in time to catch that smile and he grins his own weed-induced one.

“Be right back, gotta’ check on somethin’!”

And he darts for the door.

[I gotta cook dinner!! might be back in a little bit!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She raises an eyebrow as Quinn leaves and then Hunter soon after. A little shrug and she takes a seat at the bar, orders a couple tequila shots. One gets raised, held there for a moment as if in a salute and then downed. After the rim of the shotglass is placed against the bar, she finally speaks.

“Well, I showered today, so I know it’s not me.” It’s meant as a joke, obviously. Only a certain kind of person jokes at a wake. Sarita is that kind of person.

[Adamidas] Hunter gets a grin out of her. She’s too young to be in a bar, and everyone in the city knows it. Adam is no longer the youngest garou in the city, but she is the youngest Fostern. She is the youngest theurge in the city. She is also one of the most experienced. If we’re going to get too technical, Adam was also there when Howard. died. (didn’t do anything. Didn’t do enough. Alas, alas. Woe is us.) She grins and parks it at the bar. She crosses her legs, she straightens her spine, she smiles like she belongs and she smiles like she’s joyous.

Because, you know, she is.

“How’s the party been? C’mon, we should be doing something. Pissing off that pretty Fenrir or something else that’s Howard-appropriate.”

[Rory] Sarita has a seat, and Rory looks at her, shyly, and rolls a shoulder into a shrug. She always has that effect on people, so the fact that Quinn and Hunter have sat with her this evening is something of a minor miracle, and something she’ll cherish – though she’d never admit it aloud.

She pulls up the cloth case for her guitar though, and goes about putting it away, carefully. She sets it on the floor, leaning the neck against her hip as she reaches for her never ending beer.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “Hey, I’m all sorts of game, chica.” She grins at Adam. She may have toned herself down a bit, but she’s still Sarita. “I just got here, after all. And you’re right, this place needs a bit of livening up.”

She downs the second shot and turns, leaning back against the bar. “So what’s the plan then?”

[Adamidas] “How did you guys know him?”

She asks. Her attention doesn’t waver, but she catches the posture that Rory has. her always, always shy demeanor. She notices that Sarita is gorgeous, that she is appealing and sexy and downright lovely in her own right. Adam looks at the bar and orders a shot. the bartender gives her a look

She orders a Shirley Temple instead. Doesn’t matter that she’s a Fostern, she’s still a damned kid.

“We need stories!

She says it as though Gaia herself commanded this.

[Rory] She waves off Tom when he goes to refill her drink again, and stands, tugging on her coat. She slings on her pack, and the guitar. She’s been here hours already, and her streets won’t patrol themselves. A shy look for those that recently arrived, and a wave of her fingers as she weaves her way through the tables toward the door.

A breath, a final goodbye, and she slips out into the night.

[night, ya’ll – it’s bedtime for lessa!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She watches Rory go, giving her a little smile and nod, then looks to Adam. “First time I saw him, he was being helped out of the bathroom of the Brotherhood with his ass bleeding. Didn’t really talk to him much then though. That came at a coffee shop. Tabitha was there.”

She looks at Tabitha and grins a bit. Sarita’s sure Tabitha knows the day in question.

[Adamidas] “Tell me more,” she says, and she sits on top of the bar at this point. Her feet are ont he stool and her butt is planted firmly on the bar. the bartender doesn’t seem to mind. Instead, Adam takes a long drink off of her distinctly non-alcoholic beverage, and she’s grinning. She’s grinning like a child at story time.

“What was he doing at the Brotherhood? Did he get into a fight? Did he slip in the shower?”

She kicks her legs.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “I don’t honestly know.” She chuckles and shrugs. “It was like, my second day being here. I showed up to explore the upstairs. All I know is that Quinn was in there, Patrick was in there, Hunter was and Bridget too. There were towels involved, some yelling, a yelp of pain, and they just walked on by and left like it was all perfectly normal.” She smiles, looking over at Adam.

“So yeah, my introduction to Howard. Which, of course, was an appropriate introduction.” Her head cocks. “How about you? I knew him all of two weeks. You’ve probably got some actual stories.”

[Adamidas] “I can’t say that I really knew him that well. I can’t say he was solid. I can’t say a lot of things except that I was where when he died. And he fought, and he did what he did well. Howard was Howard, and now he’s in his ancestral homelands and livin’ it up,” she takes another drink. She smiles. She seems at peace.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “And he’s a lucky bastard for that, in some ways.” She smiles a little and nods, getting another shot. “I guess I just appreciate what he did. Hell of a Ragabash, for a Theurge.” She pauses, downing the shot.

“And I mean that in the best possible way.”

[Adamidas] “To one of the best ragabashes the Fianna have seen,” she says. She raises her glass and grins wide.

She downs the drink.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She grins widely at that, getting yet another shot so she can join in. “Hear fuckin’ here.”

One more down the hatch, and she looks around with a sigh. “I always hate being the last to a party. But then, if I wasn’t irritated and amused, it wouldn’t be a good Howard wake, so it fits.”

[Adamidas] “Irritated or amused? Which is it?”

She’s grinning wide, and ever-so-curious tonight. She’s watching Sarita, she’s paying attention. She can’t look away just yet.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “What, you can’t be both?” She matches the Fury’s grin with one of her own. “I’m frequently irritated and amused at the same time, myself. Haven’t you been?”

A little cock of her head, as she puts the ball back in Adamidas’ court.

[Adamidas] “I’ve been a lot of things,” she says, “but usually? It’s hungry and tired. I’m pretty much like a cholicky baby.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “Ahh, I see.” She chuckles. “You should try swaddling yourself. I heard that does wonders.”

[Adamidas] “Have you ever tried to swaddle yourself in anything? It’s difficult. Not only that, but you end up- okay. Swaddling is uncomfortable. And what if my butt itches, huh?”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “Well, that’s why you set up a Rube Goldberg-esque device with a button that you can press with your nose that will scratch your butt for you.”

She shrugs her shoulders, as if it’s an obvious answer. “Problem solved.”

[Adamidas] “Can you find me three frying pans, two eggs, a candle, and seven yards of twine?”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “Seriously?” She grins. “Chica, gimmie like a half-hour. Forty-five tops. I’ll even throw in a wooden spork and four mouse traps.”

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A Fight With a Wurm

[Cracka’Jack] *Snow drifts lightly on the streets of Bronzeville, dusting the slums magical for a few spare hours. Darkness is falling over the ghetto, and the predators are coming out to play. Thugs loiter on corners, breath puffing as they speak in low tones, eyes slanted wary at each passing car. There are things out tonight higher in the food chain than those in gang colors.

One of them is a scrawny ghetto diva, a pink bubble popping loudly between her lips as she cases an abandoned parking lot. Once upon a time, this had been a park. Lou’s little sister had chipped her teeth on the metal monkey bars years ago. Now it was 2 stories of cement and exposed rebar. Hoop earring flicker in the dying streetlight as she shakes her head.*

[Tongue Twister] Somewhere between bronzeville and chinatown is a hidden little apartment building that once was a packhouse for the Bogeymen. Now it holds only the lone Bogeman left, by the generous donations of a certain Shadow Lord Kin, who digs skinny, shy redheads. Said redhead is currently headed home from whatever mischief she’d gotten into today – which is to say not much, as sometimes she is not very much like her Tribe, at all.

Battered boots, tattered jeans, a light jacket and all those vibrantly red curls turns the corner in the form of Rory. Her pack is on her shoulders, her hands shoved deep into her pocket, her lithe form keeping close to the shadows, as all good Bogeymen do…

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She’s walking down the street, having absolutely no problem with the slums in which she finds herself. The woman is used to traveling through the scuzzy parts of society, and she walks along like she owns the place. It’s a level of confidence that would be considered foolhardy on anyone but the most capable of individuals. Is she that level of capable? We may find out soon enough.

A hand-rolled cigarette is pressed between her lips as she walks along, having just pocketed some cash. The Strider needs a place to ply her trade, and there’s no shortage of pot buyers around here, she’s learned in the last three weeks. She rolls her shoulders, setlling the duster a little better on her shoulder as she moves along.

[Prayers to Broken Stone] As a matter of fact, there’s a familiar figure talking to one of those pot dealers right now. Well, familiar in breeding at any rate. Familiar if the broad shoulders and back were remembered from times glimpsed around the Brotherhood of Thieves, around the city. Patrick Llewelyn is standing, hand in one pocket, hood drawn back from his blond head and lit cigarette between the fingers of the other, talking in undertones to a young Hispanic kid.

The kid has a cigarette between his lips, and neat cornrows; running over his skull and ending at the nape of his neck. There are more tattoos on his body than many people ever see at once in their natural lifetime. A handful of bills emerge from Patrick’s pocket, and to Sarita, or anyone else who knows what to look for can glimpse the baggie that’s handed over and that the Galliard tucks into his coat.

He starts away from the kid with a brief nod.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She glances over when she sees Patrick, doing a double take. She grins a little and hops playfully off the curb, then back on as she makes her way over to him. The expression on her face is mock-hurt, the upturned lips belying any actual hurt feelings as she walks toward Patrick with arms going a little wide.

“Dude! How am I supposed to run my perfectly legitimate business when my potential customer base is out shopping at my competitors?” She smirks. “That’s just straight out harsh, chico. S’up?”

[Cracka’Jack] *There was an electricity in the air that seemed to war with the whirling frost. It was what had drawn the gnawer here, though she hardly knew it. The tingle of wrongness that set her teeth on edge. Dingy leather boots scuffed across cracked cement. Lou snorted at the fault lines underfoot. This was no doubt the reason this place had been abandoned in the middle of construction, something in the concrete hadn’t set, and rather than do it right, the company had just slapped a for-sale sign on the ruined structure and walked away.

Dark eyes skate across the street at the low murmur of voices. The gnawer’s hit by one shock of celtic breeding followed by another. A strider easing up the street as though this was her regular haunt.
A snort as Lou leans from the second story of the car lot, elbows braced on concrete as she hollers to the pure blooded garou beneath.*

Sheeyit, what we got here? Got us a fuckin’ party?

*Behind her, a sign vibrates unnoticed*

[Cracka’Jack] [will be faster now. Had to deal with baby!]

[Tongue Twister] Someone calls out at her, and she looks up, almost expecting to be hit… She blinks, once, twice for good measure, then ducks her head away, curls sliding over her face to hide her expression. She sees Patrick, and Sarita, and hesitates a moment, like she’d like to go say hello, but isn’t sure if she should.

She scuffs her foot against the walk, and stops, just watching them…

[Prayers to Broken Stone] The Cliath doesn’t seem fazed as he’s hollered at from above; then again, he clearly had some familiarity, at least in passing, with being in the neighborhood. Mostly, the Galliard found if you projected an aura of confidence you were left well enough alone. It helped, naturally, when you felt as unnatural as Patrick did, with his highly potent Rage.

Just like the shy Fianna noticing them; she was cute and curly haired; but she gave off the impression of lethality none the less.
Of wrongness.

Sarita calls him dude, and the Fianna lets out a snort of smoke; it curls from his nostrils, the corner of his lip. “I was in the neighborhood,” he defends without much in the way of caring, one way or another and his blue eyes flit upwards to the Bone Gnawer, leaning over the edge of the second story lot. “Depends,” he calls back; his voice betraying his youth, the lack of a definable origin outside of American.

“What sort you looking for?”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She looks up when the shout comes from on high, head cocking sideways. She grins a little, looking at Lou. “I got some disco balls I can bust out of we need, and some Abba burning up my glove compartment. Come on down, we’ll party like it’s 1979.”

She looks over at the Fianna watching them, nodding a little bit, and looks back to Patrick. “You are quite possibly the best deadpan foil in existence, you know that?” The unsmiling man’s refusal to give into her sense of humor only seems to spur her on more. It’s like reverse psychology, only probably not intended. “I like that. We should be our own two-man comedy team. How well do you know ‘Who’s on First’?”

[Cracka’Jack] *In the world of garou, there was seldom room for coincidence. Four of Gaia’s warriors gather in the shadow of the carlot, the pulse of their righteous anger enough to herd away even the most street hardened gangbanger. That sense of the strange is growing. Helped along by a tickle along the spine. A tenseness without reason.

Lou smirks down to the Fianna as smoke coils from his mouth, her chin jerking in his direction as she bawls to he and the strider.*

Baby that chronic you fuckers doin up? Shit boy, don’t you know sharin is carin? We don’ need no disco, just do a bitch a solid! None for homegirl there though, she spooky as is.

*The gnawer is nattering from her higher perch, a bubble popping obnoxiosly. The advantage of perspective however, is to those on the ground. The edge of something coasting past the roof’s lip, like a shark scenting blood.*

[Per alert! excluding lou, as she’s mine! :P]

[Tongue Twister] Something feels off – and she tips her head slightly, her brow furrowing as she searches for the source…

(percept+alert! I SEE U)
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 5, 6, 6, 9, 10 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Strider Senses, ACTIVATE!]]
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 1, 2, 4, 7, 7 (Success x 1 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [Whats segmented and grey and probably bigger than lou? Whatever the hell that was!]
toย Sarita Ecos de la Risa

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [Per + Alert!]
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 6, 8, 10, 10, 10 (Success x 5 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [roll inits if you’re leaping into action. *laughs* Lou’ll be a step behind to keep things fair.]

[Tongue Twister] She swallows, hard, and then is moving, heading toward the (wormwhyWORMSwhywhy) grayish segments yelling as she does “Patrick?!”

Because surely he sees it too.
She doesn’t hesitate. Things like that aren’t natural. Of course, neither is she…

(Yeah, boy! GONNA SERVE YA UP FRIED! er, inits. How close is it, by the way? +8)1
Dice Rolled:[ 1 d10 ] 10

[Cracka’Jack] [for expediency’s sake, lets say you can get to it this turn.]

[Tongue Twister] (my favorite answer! ๐Ÿ™‚ )

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She doesn’t get a good look at it, but whatever it is, it’s big and not good. “HEADS UP!” she shouts, pulling out…is that a gun? The Garou is using a gun? Oookay…

[[Beat-Down Order Selection Roll FTW! +6]]
Dice Rolled:[ 1 d10 ] 9 (Success x 1 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [wurm]
Dice Rolled:[ 1 d10 ] 5

[Prayers to Broken Stone] “Hey, man, I–”

There’s a loaded pause; the Fianna’s blue eyes narrow and then widen. He tosses his smoke aside with a sharp intake of breath, and then he’s tugging at the Strider’s sleeve and starting to jog: “Fuck my life.” As Rory falls in as well, the Fianna is already beginning to change; his eyes glowing, his voice dropping into something more like a snarl than speak.

“I see it.” He doesn’t even hesitate; the Cliath. He just yells: “Sarita, see if you can distract it with the gun,” well, she’s already on it. “Rory, you see if you can flank this… whatever the fuck it is. I’ll take point.”

Why? Because it was Patrick, that’s why.

[-1 Instashift to Hispo!
+8 (boo, no totem any more)]
Dice Rolled:[ 1 d10 ] 1

[Cracka’Jack] [Lou -2 penalty due to surprise +5]
Dice Rolled:[ 1 d10 ] 1

[Cracka’Jack] **Declare slowest to fastest. Roll Fastest to slowest. Order as follows!

Twister(18)
Sarita (15)
wurm (11)
Pat (9)
Lou (6)

—-

Lou might be oblivious to the creature overhead, but she is ~not~ deaf. Everyone starts flipping shit and running towards her, and the ghetto diva does what she figures sensible. She runs out of view and pops fur, boiling to crinos near the stairs to the roof, snarling something that might have been FUCK! but is now more of a high pitched snarl.**

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [Patrick is gonna:

1a. Bite the Wurmy
1b. Repeat and Rinse
R1.
R2. — both bites!]

[Cracka’Jack] *Rippling grey skin marks the Worm’s movement towards the stairwell, girth scraping slowly across chipped cement. All the sudden movements and yelling having made it through to even its limited senses, and its tactics are now simple. Snag whatever jumps out of the concrete burrow. Eat it.*

[1a. Grab! 1b. Bite!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] To call it a “gun” would not be the most accurate thing in the world. Instead, it’s more like a hand cannon. Ever seen Dirty Harry? Yeah, that’s it. She takes aim at the thing, a little smirk curling the corner of her lips as she intends to shoot the fuck out of it.

[[Shootie shootie, Single shot]]

[Tongue Twister] (grossgrossgross

-1R to insta Hispo shift, split first action, 1 rage action

1a: flank
1b: bite
1c: bite
1R: OMNOMNOMNOM)

(1a flank, rolling 1b bite:
split 2: Dex + Brawl + Hispo = 3+4+2= 9 -4 for split = 5 diff 5-1 for flank – reroll 10s)
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 1, 3, 6, 6, 7 (Success x 2 at target 4)

[Tongue Twister] Str + Hispo + Bite + (suxx-1) = 4+3+2 = 9 + (1)
Dice Rolled:[ 10 d10 ] 1, 1, 5, 6, 6, 7, 7, 8, 8, 10 (Success x 5 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [wurm soak!]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 2, 4, 5, 5, 6, 6, 7, 8 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Tongue Twister] split 3: Dex + Brawl + Hispo = 3+4+2= 9 -5 for split = 4 diff 5-1 – reroll 10s
Dice Rolled:[ 4 d10 ] 2, 3, 4, 8 (Success x 2 at target 4)

[Tongue Twister] Str + Hispo + Bite + (suxx-1) = 4+3+2 = 9 + (1) DIE.
Dice Rolled:[ 10 d10 ] 1, 2, 2, 3, 3, 3, 5, 6, 8, 9 (Success x 2 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [wurm soak!]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 1, 4, 5, 5, 6, 8, 10, 10 (Success x 3 at target 6)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Dex+FA]]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 2, 2, 8, 8, 9, 10 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa]
Dice Rolled:[ 9 d10 ] 2, 2, 3, 4, 4, 6, 7, 7, 9 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[That was damage]]

[Cracka’Jack] [wurm soak]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 2, 2, 4, 4, 8, 9, 9, 10 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [1a- wurm – snag Rory! Grapple!!! dex/ath dif 7]
Dice Rolled:[ 7 d10 ] 1, 2, 2, 3, 6, 8, 9 (Success x 2 at target 6)

[Tongue Twister] ERK! AVOID! dex+ath per st request…
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 1, 2, 4, 7, 8, 9 (Success x 2 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [Wurm – oof! NO! grab again!! Dinner!]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 1, 4, 5, 5, 6, 9 (Failure at target 7)

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [1a. Bite! [Dex + Brawl + Hispo, -2 Split]
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 1, 2, 3, 5, 10 (Success x 1 at target 5)

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [Damage + 0]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 7, 9, 9 (Success x 5 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [wurm soak]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 9, 10, 10 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [1b. Repeat! [-3] Split]
Dice Rolled:[ 4 d10 ] 2, 2, 2, 7 (Success x 1 at target 5)

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [What is with this lack of damage, Kahseeno?]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 3, 3, 3, 4, 6, 7, 9, 9 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [wurm soaaak!]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 1, 3, 8, 8, 8, 9, 10, 10 (Success x 5 at target 6)

[Tongue Twister] RAAAAAAGE! DIE YOU SOAKING BASTARD!

Dex + Brawl + Hispo = 3+4+2= 9 diff 5-1 (flank) – reroll 10s
Dice Rolled:[ 9 d10 ] 2, 2, 3, 6, 7, 7, 8, 9, 9, 10 (Success x 8 at target 4) [WP] Re-rolls: 1

[Tongue Twister] DONT YOU DARE SOAK THIS BITCH!
Str + Hispo + Bite + (suxx-1) = 4+3+2 = 9 + 7
Dice Rolled:[ 16 d10 ] 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 7, 7, 7, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 10, 10 (Success x 9 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [wurm soak. dur dur dur.]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 2, 5, 6, 6, 7, 8, 10, 10 (Success x 6 at target 6)

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [RAGE AGAINST THE WURM, take 1.]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 1, 3, 4, 5, 5, 6, 6, 6 (Success x 4 at target 5)

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [Damage + 3]
Dice Rolled:[ 11 d10 ] 2, 3, 4, 5, 5, 6, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 (Success x 6 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [wurm soak. I AM SPARTICUS!]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 1, 3, 3, 5, 7, 7, 8, 10 (Success x 3 at target 6)

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [AGAIN!]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 3, 3, 4, 6, 8, 8, 9, 10 (Success x 5 at target 5)

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [Damage + 4]
Dice Rolled:[ 12 d10 ] 1, 2, 2, 2, 3, 4, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 9 (Success x 3 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [I SOAK IT! I AM WURM?]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 3, 4, 6, 6, 7, 7, 8, 9 (Success x 6 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] *There was no way this situation wasn’t going to be a huge veil clusterfuck if it wasn’t kept contained. The deserted street is all that saves them as Patrick boils into his powerful dire wolf form, surging into the shoddy concrete structure and streaking up the stairs behind the lightning quick form of his Metis Tribesmate. Lou’s skinny frame is bulking up as the Fianna dashes past her, all teeth as she tears into the rubbery outer skin of the wurm’s.. well.. she’d suppose it was its flank? IT all seemed the same really.
Sarita’s gun goes off with a blast that would have the cops out in force were it anywhere else in chicago, though the bullet seems to sink harmlessly into segmented blubber.

Enraged, clear foul smelling plasma spurting from bitten fles to steam in the frosty air, the wurm lashes at Rory, its tentacles clinging and slapping to no avail against thick fur, finding no purchase as a lampry mouth sucks at air.

Patrick bounds up the steps, and lights upon the wurm, teeth snapping and splitting segments apart with no small amount of effort, he and Rory coming at the abomination from either side, Lou belatedly bounding up the stairs behind them.*

[Declare slowest to fastest. Roll Fastest to slowest. Order as follows!

Twister(18)
Sarita (15)
wurm (11)
Pat (9)
Lou (6)

*Lou dives into the fray, clawing at seeking tentacles, attempting to distract the maw.*
[1a – claw tentacles. 1b. Claw tentacles. Rage1- claw tentacles! Rage 2-Claw tentacles!]

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [1a
1b — same as before!
R1.
R2. — yep, same deal.]

[Cracka’Jack] [wurm – ORLY?! 1a- Grab at Pat! 1b Grab at lou! R1-eat Pat! R2. eat Lou! r3. Eat who ever didn’t get ate!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] It takes everything that the Latina can muster not to rush forward and join in with her fellow Garou in hand-ripping it to shit. Christ knows that it’s gonna be a pain to shoot around them. But she contents herself with the knowledge that she would probably ruin a perfectly set of new boots if she did. So instead, she takes aim, letting her Rage speed to get an extra shot off. [[1. Shoot. R1. Shoot]]

[Tongue Twister] Split first action, 2 rage RARSHAMSH DIESTUPIDWURM!

1a:BITE
1b: BITE
1R:NOMNOMNOMDIE
2R:YOUDIENOW

NOMNOMNOM!

split 1: Dex + Brawl + Hispo = 3+4+2 = 9 -2 for split = 7 diff 5-1(flank) – reroll 10s
Dice Rolled:[ 7 d10 ] 3, 7, 8, 8, 9, 9, 9, 10 (Success x 7 at target 4) Re-rolls: 1

[Tongue Twister] YUMMYWURMCAN’TSOAKTHIS!

Str + Hispo + Bite + (suxx-1) = 4+3+2 = 9 + 6
Dice Rolled:[ 15 d10 ] 1, 1, 2, 3, 3, 3, 4, 5, 7, 7, 9, 9, 9, 9, 10 (Success x 5 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [I can totally soak that.]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 1, 3, 4, 6, 6, 8, 9, 10 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Tongue Twister] NOMNOMNOM! YER MAKIN ME MAD!

split 2: Dex + Brawl + Hispo = 3+4+2 = 9 -3 for split = 6 diff 5-1(flank) – reroll 10s
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 4, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10 (Success x 7 at target 4) [WP]

[Tongue Twister] SUCK IT, BITCHES!
Str + Hispo + Bite + (suxx-1) = 4+3+2 = 9 + 6
Dice Rolled:[ 15 d10 ] 2, 4, 5, 5, 5, 5, 6, 6, 6, 7, 7, 8, 8, 8, 9 (Success x 9 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [I’m completely soaking that too. eat it carrot-top.]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 2, 2, 4, 4, 7, 7, 7, 9 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[BANG BANG]]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 1, 1, 1, 1, 7, 7 (Failure at target 6)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[FUCK OFF KAHSEENO]]

[Cracka’Jack] [Wurm! 1a Grapple PAT! (wp, I’ma eat SOMEONE)]
Dice Rolled:[ 7 d10 ] 1, 3, 7, 8, 8, 9, 9 (Success x 5 at target 7) [WP]

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [Gerrof me. Dex+Ath to avoid!]
Dice Rolled:[ 7 d10 ] 1, 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 9 (Failure at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [Muahahah! I’ma also grab Lou! go go gadget tentacles!]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 1, 1, 6, 6, 8, 9 (Success x 2 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [or FAIL, as the diff should have been 7. >.

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [Re-declaring!
1a. Break free! +1 Diff for Grappled
1b. Again!]

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [1a. Break Free! Strength roll!]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 1, 2, 3, 4, 4, 10 (Failure at target 7)

[Cracka’Jack] [KEEP the MEAT!]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 1, 2, 3, 6, 8, 8 (Success x 2 at target 6)

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [1b. This is so gross. -3, oops. Forgot that on 1a. DURR.]
Dice Rolled:[ 3 d10 ] 4, 4, 9 (Success x 1 at target 7)

[Cracka’Jack] [NO! stay! I will love you and pet you, and call you george]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 2, 4, 6, 6, 6, 7 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [Lou – claw tentacles! ugh! + 1 dif called shot -2split]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 1, 2, 3, 3, 4, 8 (Failure at target 7)

[Cracka’Jack] Lou 1b SERIOUSLY NOW.]
Dice Rolled:[ 5 d10 ] 2, 2, 4, 6, 9 (Success x 1 at target 7)

[Cracka’Jack] [thats more like it. DAMAGE!]
Dice Rolled:[ 7 d10 ] 1, 5, 6, 6, 7, 8, 9 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [wurm – i soak!]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 1, 2, 4, 4, 6, 6, 9, 10 (Success x 3 at target 6)

[Tongue Twister] NOOO! YOU CAN’T HAVE PATRICK! DIE YOU MOTHERFUCKINWURM!

Dex + Brawl + Hispo = 3+4+2= 9 diff 5-1(flank) – reroll 10s
Dice Rolled:[ 9 d10 ] 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 7, 7, 8, 8, 10 (Success x 6 at target 4) Re-rolls: 1

[Tongue Twister] DIE RIGHT NOW! NO SOAK FOR YOU!

Str + Hispo + Bite + (suxx-1) = 4+3+2 = 9 + 5
Dice Rolled:[ 14 d10 ] 1, 1, 2, 2, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 8, 8, 8, 9 (Success x 5 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [I soak?]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 2, 7, 7, 7, 8, 10, 10, 10 (Success x 7 at target 6)

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[FUCKING FUCK OFF YOU FUCKING WURM FUCK! BOOOM!]]
Dice Rolled:[ 6 d10 ] 2, 2, 3, 4, 8, 10 (Success x 3 at target 6) [WP]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Go Go Gadget-Damage Pool!]]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 3, 3, 3, 5, 6, 6, 8, 9 (Success x 4 at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [I eat guns for breakfast?]
Dice Rolled:[ 8 d10 ] 1, 1, 3, 3, 4, 5, 7, 9 (Failure at target 6)

[Cracka’Jack] [WURM… is dead!?!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[In Soviet Russia Guns Eat You!]]

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [WOOHOO!]

[Tongue Twister] (WHOOOHOOO!)

[Cracka’Jack] **The roof of the shoddily constructed carport is not up to supporting this much weight, it cracks and groans under the claws of the collected garou, Sarita can see pressure fissures appearing along the columns beneath. Above, rory is a tornado of toothy destruction, biting until her teeth sink into something more solid, a writhing rope of bone.
Sarita’s gun fires wide of the mark in all her careful aiming not to hit the other fighting gaians. Tentacles slither around the back of furred hocks, tightening and dragging Patrick off his feet, worm creature suddenly seeming more like a terrible squid monster from a horror flick, albeit one intent on consuming itself a Fianna galliard. Lou manages to avoid being entangled, but only one lonely tentacle is shorn from around Patrick’s body as the worm writhes and slithers across the crumbling rooftop. Quick as thought, Rory is on its hind quarters, stripping, peeling off thick insensitive hid from the beast in great mouthfuls – and still it seems the thing is unaffected. PAtrick can feel an unwholesome circle of suckers and chitinous teeth working through the fur of his hind-quarters, feel them scrape with stinging acidity against now bare skin – and then a single shot rings out, and he’s dropped hard to the floor, a worm-creature half crushing him, oozing sicklly yellow fluid as it tremors in its death throes.*

[Cracka’Jack] *Lou is quick to shift forms, perhaps only so she can better bawl.*

Well Sheeyit. Ain’t that a bitch. You okay dawg?

*A black ooze slicked hand offered down to the crumpled galliard beside her. A boot toeing a tentacle as she does so, ensuring ts a fatality.*

[Tongue Twister] She is poised to tear another chunk out of the thing, only to skid to a stop and fall against the worm as it crashes down in death. Ears flick forward, head cocks to the side, and she makes a confused sound deep in her throat… even as she noses it to make sure it’s dead…

When she has assured herself it is… she scrambles up and over it to see if Patrick is ok, panic clear in her eyes… the last of Caldera’s own that she befriended died. Everyone leaves, everyone dies. She’d prefer it not happen again… let alone so soon. So she scrambles, sliding in the ooze to get up and over and find the man who’d promised to teach her guitar..

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She grins as the thing drops from her bullet, and she can’t help it…she brings the barrel toward her lips and blows for effect. You gotta have style, after all. Of course, she’s doing it AS she runs toward Patrick to check on him. “Yo, chico and chicas!” She yells to the group, putting her gun away. “Y’all wanna get your culos off that carport. Trust me.”

[Prayers to Broken Stone] The tawny Hispo beast on the ground beneath the creature gives a half-disgusted snarl as it collapses upon it; sensitive nostrils flaring at the stench of the liquid oozing sluggishly from its hide. With the Bone Gnawer’s aid, he is pulled free of it and rises to his feet; shaking off a massive fur coat with a bristling.

When Patrick changes forms; he becomes a tall, blond haired man with black ooze coating patches of his clothing where the creature had grappled him in another form. He looks around for Sarita, and Rory; and finding both holds up a thumb in a clear signal of s’all good.

Rory clambers toward him, and the Galliard flashes her what passes for a grin. “Nice teeth work, killer.” Sarita gets another. “Look at the aim on you, thanks.” Then, sniffing, coated in sticky crap, the Fianna starts patting down a pocket in search of his cigarettes.

“Christ, I think it ate my smokes.”

[Tongue Twister] He’s fine. He even almost grins at her, and if the Hispo form could blush at that coupled with the compliment, then it is almost certain that she is. She ducks her head, and settles back into herself, sliding into Monkey skin with a little shake that turns to a shiver, her pack settling on her back again, her slender form crouched by the wurm.

She blinks at Sarita, and tries to figure out what a culos is.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She smirks a little and shakes her head, chuckling. “I’m just upset I didn’t have time to say ‘Are ya feelin’ lucky, punk?’ Also, this is why you get to be happy I got smokes on me.” She reaches into her duster and pulls out a pack, holding it out to him.” She plays it off well, but Y’sure you’re okay?”

[Cracka’Jack] Think it pissed all over you, hommes.

*The ghetto diva is teasing a strange sucker out of her hair, flinging it to the ground as the building groans underfoot. A wide eyed look to Sarita and the Fianna, before the Gnawer is jogging down the stairwell, hollering*

Shit, bookit!

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “Yeah, like I said…abandon ship.” She gives a wide grin and moves to follow Lou. “The slimy suckery thing can be the captain that goes down with it.”

[Tongue Twister] The building groans, and Rory snaps her head up, and looks around at the carport, and the thing on top of it, and her brows furrow slightly, as she glances to Patrick. “..burn?”

A legitimate question – if he thinks it can burn away all the evidence, she’ll see to starting the fire to do so, before the building collapses…

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [Sorry guys, phonecall! ๐Ÿ™‚ Patrick will abandon ship too and suggest burning seems the best option!]

[Tongue Twister] He nods, and turns to run. Rory gives them a head start, and then settles her nerves with a breath… and

[Create Element – GN diff 6)]
Dice Rolled:[ 4 d10 ] 2, 8, 9, 10 (Success x 4 at target 6) [WP]

[Tongue Twister] …sets the wurm on fire – stands, and runs to catch up with the others.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Gaah. Stupid chat not updating. :P]]

Once she gets off the thing, she turns around from a safe distance to look the ruined carport over, and then looks back to Lou and Rory. “Soooooo, hi.” She extends a hand to them in succession. “I’m Sarita. I shoot things, but you already know that.”

[Cracka’Jack] Aw see? Don’ be trippin, gurl Got this.

*Croons Lou to Sarita and Pat, as Rory makes with well timed arson. Narrow shoulders jog as though she wasn’t the one who’d yelped and ran the hell away, as though she’d been cool and calm and – *

That some nasty assed wyrm shit up in there. Knew I smelt some bad ass bizniz.

*Lou snorts fishing around in her pockets for a peice of gum. *

You bussa cap in that thing like a gansta, Sari-baby. I’m Lou. Cracka’Jack, full moon howling original BeeGee. So who you fine fianna fuckers? You done tore that shit UP.

[Cracka’Jack] *Sar’s hand is slapped in a ghetto handshake, before Lou pops gum back in her face and chews thoughtfully, going hipshod.*

[Tongue Twister] Rory is shy. It’s odd – as even with the rage spent, she burns with the fire of the full moon, her cheeks warm still with the simple delight in Patrick’s compliment for her. It’s not hard to imagine she doesn’t get such kind words often.

Lou introduces herself, as does Sarita. Rory looks down at the offered hand, then back up again, before she slips her fingers – pale and delicate looking – into Sarita’s briefly. She never quite meets their eyes, never quite that daring, or strong. She offers her name, softly. “Rory.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She grins at Lou, thoroughly amused by the woman. “You, I like.” When Rory takes Sarita’s hand, the Hispanic Strider smiles, her expression softening some, and nods her head. She tones back her usual larger than life attitude for a moment.

“Nice to meet you, Rory.” She doesn’t grip the Fianna’s hand too tightly, just a light squeeze before she lets go. “Nice going up there.”

[Tongue Twister] Rory’s grip is stronger than one expects – one of the many surprises in the soft-spoken Fianna. She flushes with pleasure at the compliment, ducking her head to hide behind her hair as she tucks her hands into the pockets of her jeans.

Not one for many words on the best of days, she sums it all up with “you too.”

Because some things are easier said than others.

[Cracka’Jack] Tyeah. Shit, you HAD that fuckin crawler done the fuck in, till the Strider here gots all Doc Holiday on a mother fucker. BAm. one shot one kill. What?! Fuckin bullshit.
What that piece you got on you anyway? Let a bitch see that shit….

*And no. She doesn’t seem to ever shut up. Quite a contrast to Rory as Lou shakes out dragon lady fingernails and begins to clean them, grinning madly as she gestures the group into an alley with a shake of her head.*

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] Rory gets a little smile, before Lou starts in again. The Strider grins and reaches into her duster as she starts for the alley, pulling out the .44 Colt to show the Gnawer. She doesn’t hand it over, though. There’s no wariness toward Lou…it’s a thing for her. “Lou, meet Harry. Harry, meet Lou. He’s my oldest and best friend. More reliable than a boyfriend and he only shoots off when I tell him to, which is another way he’s better than a guy.”

[Tongue Twister] She looks around, making sure things are burning well, and even if – no, when – the carport collapses, there will be nothing left of the thing that attacked them. She follows into the alley, though a bit behind, a little more timid. This is not the rage machine they saw just moments ago against the enemy – no. This is the shy girl, who’s been hurt far too often, far too much, far too recently.

She remains quiet, looking at the gun curiously.

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [back! Typing!]

[Cracka’Jack] *A bony shoulder jostles into Rory’s pushing her off-balance as Lou grins a shit eating grin. Lips work a moment, before a bubble blows large in the Fianna’s face. For all its obnoxiousness, its a playful sort of harrassment afforded the Metis. Then Sarita brings out a gun, and the gnawer is eyeballing it with a smirk.*

How many papers that cost you? Shit. Dirty Harry?

[Cracka’Jack] [heads up! my power just flickered, usually a sure sign its about to ditch me! If I disappear, assume Lou hears sirens and bolts.]

[Prayers to Broken Stone] Lou asks who they are, and Patrick shakes her hand, his grip around her wrist more than her hand itself. It seemed a strange action, but then — Celtic, who knew. “Prayers to Broken Stone, Cliath Galliard Fianna, you can call me Patrick, though.” He’s taken up one of Sarita’s earlier offered cigarettes, and lights it with a cupped palm over the flame.

It dances over the Galliard’s face, revealing the cheekbones, brow and eyes of his tribe; his features were not those of the Sons of Stag to Ireland, or Scotland but those of the Welsh born.

[Ack, noted! Thanks for STing if you drop, Punkin!]

[Tongue Twister] (ditto! ๐Ÿ™‚ )

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] [[Indeed, thank you!]]

Sarita chuckles to Lou. “Got it off of this fuckstain scumbag selling meth to eight-year-olds way back when, in Arizona. He wasn’t using it anymore once I was done with him.” She puts the gun away and looks back to Patrick. “So how’ve you been? You and Bridget get shit sorted out from the other day?”

[Tongue Twister] Patrick introduces himself, and he and the other girls talk, while Rory does what she normally does – takes a step back and listens, her hands shoved deep into her pockets.

[Prayers to Broken Stone] It doesn’t take a scholar of human behavioral patterns to notice the changes that have been born in the Fianna, Patrick. He’s hanging around Bronzeville, buying weed from the same dealers as Howard had. He’s wearing some of his pack-mates T shirts around, beneath his jackets — the rare few he can fit into, that is.

He’s smoking not sometimes, but all the time. The scent of it clings to him 24/7.

At the very least, he’s shaved in the last day, so he doesn’t look entirely scruffy and without means. But he’s still hurting, that is evident and clear whenever he’s not killing monsters, or sleeping with near-strangers, or getting into arguments with Kinswoman who had been physically intimate with his Alpha. Sarita mentions Bridget, and for all that he’s burned through his rage — there’s a flicker of agitation the trembles through him — he drops his head forward, grimaces and turns away a minute, blowing smoke.

“Same old, same whatever. Night falls, daylight follows it.” A beat, he twists back, and shrugs. “Don’t think Bridget knows how to sort out what’s wrong, not sure there’s a way to fix how she feels.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She winces a bit. “Sorry…I do have a wee bit of a taste for my own boot soles from time to time.” She gives the man a light cuff to the shoulder. “You can only try, man. Don’t let it get to you. There’s more’n enough other shit that’ll pile up on top of it, you know?” She looks back at Rory and smiles giving her a friendly wink as if to include her as part of the conversation without actually forcing her to get involved, and then gives a quick sigh.

“Okay, peeps. That was fun…what do we do for an encore?”

[Tongue Twister] Patrick turns away, twists back, brushes off the thoughts, and Rory watches it all through lowered lashes. She was there when he buried his brother. She helped, once Joey pulled her over to do so. She mourns Howard more than Patrick can ever know – and she will not tell him…

She doesn’t say she understands the loss, either, though she does. She simply watches, quietly, and understands far deeply than any could imagine.

[Prayers to Broken Stone] The Strider cuffs him on the shoulder, and he endures, rather than responds to it. His tendency to become despondent, and withdrawn apparently was making itself known and Patrick remains a silent figure frowning away into the distance for a long moment after the Strider asks after an encore.

He taps at the end of the cigarette in his fingers; flicks a blue-eyed glance Rory’s way.

“Think I’m gonna head off, back toward Lake View. Maybe grab some beers on the way.” He can hear the distant whine of sirens, as the carcass of the animal burns behind them; and the Bone Gnawer lets out a yelped shit, gotta go! and sets off like the cars were about to take the corner in pursuit.

“We should get outta dodge, anyway.”

[Tongue Twister] She nods, slightly, then lifts her fingers in a little wave, before she ducks back toward the back of the alleyway.

Bronzeville streets are her home. She knows 15 different ways to get home withing being detected, losing any that would follow in the meantime. She looks back once, just before slipping out of sight.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] A faint look of irritation passes over her face, flitting through like the shadow of a bird passing overhead. Blink and you’ll miss it. Luckily, she doesn’t give up that easy and doesn’t give a shit if she earns someone’s enmity. She gives a little nod, grin ratcheting up a good ways. “Sounds like a plan.” She nods and starts to walk along in that direction.

“Safety in numbers, after all. Right?”

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [thanks for scene, guys! switching up for LV! ๐Ÿ™‚ ]

[Simon Zahradnik] He watches the other two leave with a silent and Empty look on his face and then he watches Lukas through the window. He wasn’t going anywhere… He would wait and do as he is told/directed by his elder.

LAKE VIEW

[Oliver] [woo thanks for the scene, ya’ll!]

[Prayers to Broken Stone] People in Lake View are accustomed to seeing some strange things.

Sometimes, usually when there’s a full moon in the sky some really odd occurrences happen, too. Tonight there’s barely a sliver of one left yet it didn’t stop the Ahrouns having a fist fight in the middle of the Cafe. It also doesn’t, apparently, prevent a Fianna Galliard from appearing around the corner of a block covered in drying black goop; it dots his coat; the shirt beneath which was some lurid colored abomination that set off the uncanny blue of the Fiann’s eyes.

He’s broad-shouldered, bares the breeding of a son of Stag and is accompanied by a Silent Strider who, while not as coated in grime as he, also bears the signs of a recent battle. The blond has his hands in his pockets; his eyes downcast; though every now and then he raises them to glance at his companion and frown.

He does not slow down, as they come upon the Cafe. Or seem to care, particularly, if he gets the odd glance, an up and down of uneasiness.

[princess] Asha is napping in the backseat of Lukas’ car. It’s almost sweet. Her dark head is pillowed in a cloud of gleaming back hair, and she’s curled up in a fetal position – sleeping the sleep not of the dead, but of wolves – which is to say, she’ll be deeply asleep until she’s startled awake by movement outside.

And then she will be immediately, utterly awake.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] She’s walking along at Patrick’s side, in a much better mood from the looks of it than the Fianna. “…don’t worry. You loosened the lid of the jar, so to speak. I just finished it up.” Whether Patrick was worried or not about that may be a completely different story, but she’s putting it out there anyway as they walk along. If Sarita is worried about what people think of her and Patrick’s odd appearance, she sure as hell isn’t showing it. In fact, when someone on the corner gives them a strange look, she pauses turns her head in their direction.

“OIL! Go tell J.P. Morgan, we struck black gold! Texas tea, right here in River City!” The now thoroughly-wierded out person gets the excuse they need to escape their rage, and Sarita grins and speeds her steps to make up the small amount of lost ground.

[Lukas] Lukas is back outside in record time. It seems no one in the cafe wants to delay his order. He’s fasttracked to the front of the line, and then his drink is fasttracked past a row of empty waiting cups. Two, three minutes tops and he’s coming back out with a steaming cup of joe in hand. If he’s surprised to see Simon still waiting, he doesn’t show it. He tilts his head toward the car, holding his hand out for his keys as he goes.

The front doors unlock. Asha comes instantly awake, and then Lukas climbs in, depressing the car on its shocks.

“Have you met Asha? Asha, this is Simon Bone-Grinder, my tribesman, fellow Ahroun, and current Wyrmfoe of the Sept. Simon, Asha K&+257;lar&+257;tri, my packmate, also an Ahroun.”

[princess] Too bad Thomas wasn’t asleep in the front seat. He’d introduce Asha properly. Instead, she’s to be contented with two names and a moon-sign. The creature straightens, pushes a hand through sleep-tousled hair and yawns once, revealing perfect rows of sharp white teeth before she snaps her mouth closed and shakes free of the lingering hints of sleepiness, chasing them from the edges of her consciousness like cobwebs burned from the darkest corners of the room.

“Hi.” Asha says, making a mental note that they’ve not been properly introducted. Keeping it mental so as not to shame her Alpha.

[Simon Zahradnik] Simon follows… Why Lukas would be surprised if at all would be beyond him! The Full Moon had asked him to stay so they could speak! It would actually be rather impolite to disobey his elder like that would it not? Still he walks to the door and glances in at the sight of Asha. He smiles a little and he nods his head…

“She distracted a dragon for me once… But Adam scared it off before I could strike the killing blow. Ruined what woulda been a great story to tell my eventual children about their father. Still we made it out alive so it’s all good!”He says with a grin.”It’s a pleasure to meet you Rhya…”He did not know if she was his elder or not, the rank was not mentioned but she was Packmate to his alpha so he opted for respectful.

His smile showed as he looked her over. Cautious and curious to see if she recalled that little bit of history.

[Prayers to Broken Stone] She’s trying to comfort him about the gigantic garden worm from Hell they just slaughtered and set on fire in Bronzeville; and the Fianna walking at her side slants her a rather incredulous look, and punctuates it with a snort. It’s good natured, though, at least as good natured as you were likely to receive from Patrick right now.

Ahead of them, a blaze of Rage in the form of the current Ahroun Elder walks out of a Cafe with coffee in hand, and gets into a car where another two Garou sit — he recognizes the passenger in the front seat, and one of his eyebrows crawls upward a little. “What the Hell,” he says under his breath; a mixture of genuine bemusement and irritation.

“They conduct meetings in their cars, now?”

Patrick comes to a stop outside the Cafe, slouches his back against the brick facade and promptly pulls another of Sarita’s cigarettes out — he’d held onto the packet, what a prince — he lights up; fostering nothing to disguise his interest in what was going on inside the car. “Whose the guy in the front seat with Bone Grinder?”

This, an aside to Sarita, like she’s expected to know.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] The semi-sorta good-natured snort from Patrick gets a little twinkle in the mischievous Latina’s eye. She’s making headway. She pulls out another couple of cigarettes and passes Patrick one before she lights up.

“Who, what?” She looks ahead, squinting a bit at the car. “Oh…that’s Simon–obviously–and Lukas. Simon’s tribe. Ahroun. Master of the Challenge’s packmate, and I think he’s the tribe elder if I remember my conversation with him right. I was a tiny bit stoned at the time, but I think I got that right.”

[Lukas] It’s still warm in the car — lingering effects of the heater. It gets warmer when Lukas fires up the engine, but they don’t go anywhere. He thumbs down the window on his side a little to vent. Too much rage, too much body heat.

“You’re both Cliaths,” Lukas says, sips his coffee, and then passes into the back in case her highness wanted some. “Anyway, Simon, I wanted to talk to you about taking on a more active role. For a long time Wyrmfoe’s been largely a ceremonial role, but you’re a Shadow Lord, and we’re pragmatists. I doubt you would have taken it on if you didn’t want to do something with it.

“So this is the first thing I want you to do. I want you to go around to each pack and assess their combat ability. I don’t care if this means fighting them, taking them out to fight with you, or giving them a questionnaire — as long as you get answers and those answers are reliable. I want to know how good they are, and I want to know if you’d classify them as scouts, warpacks, or something else altogether.

“Then I want you to start training Garou who need training. I don’t expect a Child of Gaia Theurge to be at the caliber of a Get of Fenris Ahroun, but I want everyone in the Sept to be competent.”

A pause, another sip.

“I know you wanted to take a bigger role in actually getting packs to mesh, too, but I’m going to put someone else on that. Maybe Joey, if she wins her challenge. It’s not that I doubt your conviction, Simon, but you’re a warrior. A weapon. Social graces aren’t your strong suit, and you’ve got a strong, polarizing personality. Someone like Joey, someone who gives off the impression of being laid-back and easy to talk to, will ruffle feathers much less as she goes around sussing out conflicts and how to mend them.”

[princess] Naturally, Asha assumed that Simon addressed her as -rhya out of natural deference to her breeding, her blood, her tribe. She nearly tells Lukas that when he mentions it, but thinks better of it when he passes his coffee back to her highness.

Lately, she’s preferred her eminent highness, thank you very much. So: her eminent highness takes a deep drink of coffee, mouth curling. It is perhaps here that Lukas might rethink giving that girl caffeine.

Still, she flashes him a winning grin, all razor-wide, all white teeth – and bounces experimentally on the back seat. “That’s good,” Asha tells Lukas, opening the back passenger’s door already. “I’m gonna go get it in Super Extra Venti with a double-shot and some chocolate sauce. Be right back!”

[princess] (this is liz going to bed! night guys!)

[Simon Zahradnik] He draws in a little breath and he nods his head. You see there was a little glimmer in his eyes, and a nod of his head. The job of the Wyrmfoe was, in his mind, largely a position taken by young Ahrouns seeking to earn a name. So when Lukas offered him something to do for the sept with his position he nodded his head and smiled slightly.”I will assess each pack to the best of my ability.”He already found himself formulating opinions he also thought about all those who were not claimed or members in an active pack. They could be addressed later. For the moment he had something to do with his position so he wasn’t just waiting for a Moot.

He then nods his head.”If someone else can work on coordination I do not care. I am more interested in survivability… A pack can hardly claim a territory that is swarming with Wyrm creatures is truly under their control. Territory is something a pack can manage on their own and so long as this hive remains a threat we can hardly claim most of this city is ours. I have personally slain at least a Dozen of them and that hasn’t even dented their population. As I see it this is their city until we drive them out… I would rather we all work together to drive them out then we can start dividing the city into our own personal regions. It doesn’t make sense to fight over territory we don’t even own.”He says with a nod of his head. Something he has given thought to…

He smiles just a hint.”I am looking forward to reporting something back as soon as possible. I suppose I should begin assessing the packs strengths and weaknesses.”He pauses to think on this then smiles just a tad.”I am assuming you will be taking care of your pack? Or would you like me to assess them as well?”He asks with a hint of a grin. You see Simon was a Shadow Lord and so that meant that he could devise all manner of sneaky tricks if Lukas wanted his pack tested as well.

[Lukas] Their conversation is interrupted, albeit briefly, as the Fang princess — and she is, annoyingly enough, an actual princess — in the back bounces once and then rockets out the door for something sweet and caffeinated. Lukas watches her go, wondering if he’s making a mistake. Then he turns back to Simon.

“I’ll handle the Unbroken. If I don’t even know my own pack, I don’t deserve to be Alpha of anything. As for territory — I’ve never been a fan of packs claiming firm turf and nailing up KEEP OUT signs. It turns the Sept against itself. But it doesn’t mean I don’t want Garou to take care of patches of protectorate, as long as they realize they’re warders, not owners.

“The Caern comes first. But I do want Dark Sky and the Vanguard to work together cleaning Bronzeville up. It’s too bad Hunter had to leave so fast, but when you go talk to his pack, set some time aside to work with him on divvying up the patrols in the area. He talked about something afoot in the area too — Wyrm companies, maybe. Said he’d get back to me when he had more details. You’ll want to talk to him about that too so you can better mesh your efforts there.

“Sooner or later we’ll have to turn our attention back north. The Knights were doing all right for a while, but Mica’el reported pretty heavy losses the last two weeks. So I might send the Vanguard up for a look, or I might go myself. So get those packs into fighting trim for me, Bone Grinder. We’ll need them soon.”

[Simon Zahradnik] He nods his head at the mention of speaking to Hunter.”I will do what I can… We need to begin cutting off the Hive’s resources. You can bet they have allies and potential allies scattered about the city. I have been doing my best to root them out but better and direct coordination and communication would make this all work better.”He says with a little smile. His eyes follow Asha for a second before looking back at Lukas.

He Mentions Mica’el… Was he referring to that Angel Thing? It honestly did not matter. If they were fighting their enemies then that made them allies and a valuable resource for the moment. Honestly he hadn’t minded the one that… Worked with them.”I will make certain the packs are ready and those who are not will be pressured towards doing so.”He smiles just a little.”I will also look into classes or training of some sort… Perhaps hunter and some of the other Full Moons would be willing to assist.”He says with a little smile.

“I look forward to the day we bring this fight to the Hive itself… I can’t wait to see the look on their faces when we destroy that abomination and collapse what remains in around their heads.”His eyes spoke of delight. He would not rest… He might hide, he might run, he might retreat, when it was necessary but he would not rest until the Black Spiral Dancers in this city were hunted down to the last man and exterminated.”Give me time and I will teach them the true meaning of fear.”He says with a little nod of certainty.

He was delighted. The young Full Moon was getting a responsibility. Something more to pile on his plate and that meant he would be a very busy man. He’s been looking for more to do as Wyrmfoe anyway.”I will do the position, my tribe, and my sept proud.”He says with a nod of his head.

“Was there anything more Rhya?”

[Lukas] “I’m willing to teach as well,” Lukas adds, “but sometimes it feels like if I step up it suddenly becomes an inspection, not practice. I’m here, though, if you want me to help train our Septmates.”

Lukas takes one more sip of coffee, then sets it down. “Yeah,” he replies, “just one.” He looks Simon in the eye, solid and direct. “Thank you. A lot of others in your position have chosen to take the backseat, to be led rather than to take initiative. Or worse: to wait for their leaders to fail. I know I was hard on you before, but … I’m happy you stepped up. I’m proud to call you my tribesman and auspicemate.”

[Prayers to Broken Stone] “Huh.”

Ever the eloquent one, Patrick. The Fianna pushes off the wall in a surprisingly fluid motion; given his frequency for being a less than adequately elegant Galliard. He walks a couple of steps nearer, watches the Silver Fang dash back toward the Cafe with a strangely fixated purpose; then swings his gaze back on the pair in the car.

Staring; watching — he looks the picture of disapproving youth with his battle-smeared clothing, and rumpled hair. Smoke trails from his nose before he addresses Sarita again. “Figured he’d be bigger or something. I hear Shadow Lord I see the evil guys in Disney flicks, y’know.”

He sniffs again. Is he catching a cold, or is it a habit. “Probably the way they hear Fianna and figure we’re all drunks who can’t figure one end of a klaive from another.”

[Simon Zahradnik] He smiles just a hint.”We have responsibilities… One day I will be in your position. One day the weight of these decisions will fall in my lap. I can either reach for them and embrace what I am to become or I can run from it. I only run when it is necessary.”He says with a nod of his head.

“I thank you for your praise and I look forward to living up to it.”You see there were a lot of things to be said about the Shadow Lords. There would always be a chance that Simon might one day seize power from his elder by force. This was their way… Lukas must maintain his strength for his people if he cannot then it will be taken from him. But there was also an understanding that Simon came to as a garou.

“We will hope that it will be many decades before I have to step into your shoes. In the meantime… Someone must always stand ready to step forward. This is our life…”Simon was showing Ambition… It was a Shadow Lord trait but it was more than that. He knew that he would one day have to lead and he wasn’t shying from it. There was a slight glimmer though, it was nice to be acknowledged for ones actions.”I look forward to serving under you for many years if not decades to come.”He says with a nod of his head. Proud, headstrong, certain… Failure would not happen… Even if one day it would.

“You will make us proud when this battle finally is brought to the Hive. I look forward to the celebration when it finally falls.”He nods his head one final reassurance. He wasn’t being mushy, he was returning a compliment from his elder.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “Mmm.” She smirks, watching both Patrick and the car. “Well, if you like I can buy him a black cape, a hat with a feather in it and a big mustache that he can twirl. I’m sure he’d love it. He does look like a traditionalist, after all.” She chuckles.

She takes a drag off of her cigarette and takes a lean against a stop sign. “You know, they’re probably gonna see us at some point and assume we’re spying. They may have to kill us if they think we know too much.” There’s just a touch of wryness to it.

[Lukas] The subtle reminder of the way of their tribe — the ambition, the constant temptation of power — brings a wry smile to Lukas’s face. He leaves it where it is: they both know how it works. In the end, all he says is, “As do I.

“I’ll see you around, Bone Grinder. Keep me informed.”

[i’m gonna put Lukas on semipause for now — gotta focus on challenge! if you guys are around in a bit i might trot him out again, though. thanks for the RP!]

[Prayers to Broken Stone] The Fianna lets out a bark of laughter; it is as darkly entertained by the notion as his answer is. “Yeah, well, at least we’ll be remembered for more than being another blood-smear on the ground when our time comes.” The Galliard finishes his cigarette; flicks it into the gutter where it sparks and hisses, and reaches a hand into a pocket; turning his back to one side so he’s facing away from late night Cafe patrons.

The plastic bag in his pocket rustles as he takes out paper, and a collection of herb, and proceeds to roll it.

“How many of these,” he says flatly; conversationally for Patrick; his blue eyes lifting to meet hers, “you think I’ll take before my head completely empties out.”

[Prayers to Broken Stone] [*It’ll, not I’ll. Tsh.]

[Simon Zahradnik] [Are you two watching Simon and Lukas chat?]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “Well, that’s sort of a vague question.” She looks down the street a moment and then back to him, her lean against the sign post still present and casual. She gestures to the joint-in-progress. “I mean, let’s start with the shit itself. It depends entirely how good the quality is. Most of the dank I’ve encountered here is pretty shitty, to be frank. Barely above the quality of shake. But let’s assume it’s above that, you gotta ask what kind it is.”

She shrugs. “Blends are important. Some stuff, like hash, you can smoke more or less non-stop and it’ll leave you at a certain high, keep you there and just extend it the more you smoke it. Some shit will push you into getting sick. Some shit’s just flat-out weak and you’ll be lucky if you get a buzz off it.”

“And that aside,” she adds, “What terms are we talking about? The number of joints? Depends on how much you put in them. And do you mean just stone you out of your fuckin’ mind, or like, zombify you? The last…well, hate to break it, but I don’t know if you have enough money to get that much from someone.”

[Prayers to Broken Stone] “I mean reach a state where the next fucking person who says my Alpha’s name doesn’t make me want to do anything at all but laugh.” He lights the joint; and takes a hit, breathing out slowly as he passes it over to the Ragabash.

“I’d really like to get there.”

He leans his head against the cool brick.

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “Ahh…that much.” She takes the joint and pulls a hit off of it, holding it down for a second. She seems like she’s considering for a moment, then lets it come out in a slow, lazy exhale and passes it back. “You know…I like you, amigo. You’re good peeps, even if you’re totally bumming me out by refusing to go to Improv Comedy night at the Charcoal Lounge next Thursday night. So here you go.”

She reaches into her pocket and comes out with pretty a sizable baggie. She holds it for a second, considering Patrick and appearing to do some quick math in her head. “Yeah. That’ll about do it for a good long while.”

She tosses it to him.

[Prayers to Broken Stone] “I’m a funny guy,” he says without inflection, and catches the baggie, stowing it away in a pocket. It’s minus three outside; they must be freezing. Patrick doesn’t appear to care much, if he is. Perhaps his grief sustains him; much as people suggest hate will preserve.

“I’d make you look better just sitting in the corner, alluding apathy.”

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] In Sarita’s case, she’s just too damn stubborn to recognize cold. The woman the doggedly obdurate type who refuses to acknowledge what she doesn’t feel like acknowledging. When something finally does her in, it will likely be because she was too stubborn to avoid staring death in the face, and she won’t even refuse to acknowledge she’s dead for months. But then, Silent Striders have that familiarity with the Dark Umbra, so maybe she’s just following the natural course of things into ghosthood.

“That’s what I’m saying, m’man. You’re hilarious. You make deadpan a fine art, the way Michelangelo made paintings transcendent.” She nods sagely. “It’s a gift, hommes, I’m telling you.”

[Prayers to Broken Stone] “Yeah,” he says without much in the way of feeling — that might be the weed kicking in, nice — and takes another hit. Then one more before he passes it to the Strider. “You know what, the only piece that’s missing is beer. You wanna tag along, or whatever?”

He straightens; and a passing couple deliberately speed up and avoid eye contact with him.

He starts off toward the nearest alleyway, slouching broad shoulders; a trail of pungent smoke following after his wake.

[which is Jacqui’s way of noting she’s kinda brain dead and exiting Patrick for now!]

[Sarita Ecos de la Risa] “Always.” She smiles and nods, heading off with him. [[Yeah, it’s late…sounds like a plan.]]