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Bounty Hunters: London Underworld

Bounty Hunters: London Underworld

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Bounty hunters organized into warring guilds? Murder? Treason? Betrayal? Why the bloody hell not?

1,135 readers have visited Bounty Hunters: London Underworld since Jacopo created it.

Introduction

The year is 1872.

London runs rampant with crime; living in the city is a hassle at best and living hell at worst, depending on how rich you are. Accounts of murder, robbery, assault, drug trading, and every possible variation of the former three pop up in the papers every day. Ordinary civilians rush from place to place, keeping firm hands on their pocketbooks. The metropolitan police, try as hard as they might, have no idea what to do about rising levels of crime. Their information only goes so far, and their resources are strained. Not to mention, some of the criminals they're dealing with are downright scary.

This is where the bounty hunters come in.

It started in 1850, when the police department decided to start putting wanted posters up in some of the more shady parts of London- brothels, taverns, and the like. A few months later, bodies began inexplicably turning up; corpses of wanted lawbreakers were piled next to the police station with a note demanding a service fee. Rather than persecuting the culprit, the police realized this was the solution they'd been looking for. Who better to prowl the streets of London than the inhabitants of the slums themselves? Thus began the occupation known as bounty hunting; vigilante civilians who covertly take matters into their own hands. They kill the dangerous felons, the government looks the other way, and everyone comes out on top. Thus giving a whole new meaning to the term "London Underground".

Now a Parliament-condoned activity, bounty hunting is a thriving business. The market is limited and competition is fierce, so the less competent are weeded out almost immediately. Successful hunters are quick, strong, clever, and above all, have good reflexes...because it's not just their targets that they're looking out for.

As high as the crime rates are in London, there are a limited number of big fish- the catches that really go in for a sum. And if you're a bounty hunter, trying to make enough money to feed your family (or to buy yourself new boots, depending), you really don't want others going after the same target. So what do you do?

Well, kill them first, obviously.

But as the hunters soon realized, bounty hunter setting upon bounty hunter ended up with too many of them dead and too many criminals running rampant. And that was the beginning of the Guilds- well-organized groups of bounty hunters that don't go off shooting one another at the drop of a hat. As opposed to getting their pay directly from the Parliament, guildmembers take their jobs from the Guildmaster, and get paid accordingly. The Guildmaster gets an administration fee, everyone is happy, and no one gets killed. Hopefully.

But bounty hunters are vicious by nature, and the existence of guilds isn't going to increase the number of targets...and this is where the RP begins.


~


Long story short, I'm envisaging a sort of Sherlock Holmes-y role play here, which means lots of conspiracy, plotting, treason, and outwitting. The underlying plot, obviously, will be guilds going to war against each other. But they can't exactly make it obvious; after all, the moment they start killing each other for no good reason, bounty hunting becomes illegal again (not that it would stop anyone, but still...). So it's all very complicated, and it's got to be done subtly and cleverly. To add more to the pile of fun, there are payoffs by members of Parliament who want to see their coworkers dead, bribes from criminals themselves, and every sort of corruption you could possibly think of. Depends on what you'd be willing to do for money, really. And how much you're willing to put your life at risk.

To keep things simple, there will be at the most 3 Guilds that are playable. Obviously there are more, but three ensures that there's some good double-crossing going on, and we don't want to stretch our players out too much. Because I'm a tyrant, I've already gone ahead and named them, as well as provided a little description of each.

Brooks's Guild: As its name suggests, this Guild is rooted in Brooks's, one of the oldest gentleman's clubs in London, where men go to drink, gamble, and get away from their wives. The gaming room's on the main floor, and if you know the right words and people, you'll get access to the cellar, where the actual Guild exists. The club itself is highly aristocratic, and odds are you wouldn't have gotten into the Guild unless you've got a lot of money. Strategically located, Brooks's takes many of its jobs directly from from the clients of the club.

The Underworld Guild: No girls allowed. No, really. The Underworld is famous for its uncouth members, who are for the most part young men in their teens and twenties. They're brash, reckless, and love to drink- and fight. But that isn't to say they're not skilled; get through the first batch of incompetent, drunk braggers and you'll find a group of incredibly dangerous (and surprisingly sober) men. The least secretive of all guilds, the Underworld is located right above the Bleeding Heart tavern on the shabbier side of town.

Guild Machiavelli: A bit of a wild card as far as guilds go. Guild Machiavelli is very secretive, very select, and very...well, foreign (which is probably why they've named themselves after a dead Italian philosopher). There aren't many guilds in London that'll take outsiders, but Machiavelli is just chock full of Frenchmen, Spaniards, and (oh the horror) the occasional American. No one knows where Guild Machiavelli is headquartered, because they're so damn suspicious of everyone else. Still, when Machiavelli agrees to take a job, it invariably gets done.

Character Application:

Note: I would like really literate, thoughtful people for this RP. It's going to get complicated, what with all the double-crossing, which is why I'd appreciate it if you only apply if you know you'll have time to post once a day and really put some thought into it. Thanks.

Note #2: You don't have to be a bounty hunter to join, but I'd prefer if the vast majority of characters were.

Description:
Name:
Nickname: (Bounty hunters typically go by an alias, so be creative)
Guild:
Age: (Must be above 16. Ten year old killers are cool and all, but we're going to avoid them here.)
Height:
Weight:
Eyes:
Hair:
Clothing:
Other lovely aspects of your appearance that you believe we must know about:

Personality
Fears:
Likes:
Dislikes:
Personality:

Equipment
Specialty: (What skills make you (hopefully) irreplaceable as a bounty hunter? THERE WILL BE NO SUPERPOWERS. Or sparkling, for that matter.)
Other Strengths:
Weaknesses: (No, "cares too much about others" doesn't count.)
Weapons: (Swords, knives, crossbows, etc…I mean of course there will be guns, but show a little creativity.)

Toggle Rules

1. I am the GM. What I say goes. If you play fairly, we'll all be cool with each other. If not, you're out.
2. No godmodding. Obviously.
3. No overpowering. Everyone has their strengths and weaknesses.
4. At least 2 paragraphs per post. Posts should be fleshed out and contain thought; don't just post for the sake of posting.
5. Mary-Sues will be persecuted.
6. The same applies to Gary-Stus.
7. If you cannot use grammar properly, don't even bother posting. The occasional spelling mistakes and typos are understandable, but seriously, guys...use punctuation okay thx
8. Please post at least once a day, or inform us on the OOC thread if you'll be away for more than 2 days so we're forewarned.

The Story So Far... Write a Post » as written by 4 authors

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Peter Finlay Character Portrait: Adrian W. Fenris Character Portrait: William Huntington
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#, as written by Genre
The mistress and William danced slowly on the balcony as he finished under the bright and beautiful moon light.

"The moon tonight shines so bright. It is such a beautiful sight. Though the moon itself does not quite outshine the beauty that you possess. My name is William Huntington. May I be honored to learn of the dazzling woman before me?" William knew he had her within his grasps as he told his story of fake heroic stories.

William started to think about how bright the moon is and thought, If that bomber does show up...Adrian and I would be able to see him for quite a distance in this light. Our luck is starting to change...'

"My name you ask?" She giggled and continued, "My name is Elizabeth De'Angelo. This has been a very pleasant night with you William."[/i]

William smiled and snapped his mind back to Elizabeth as he twirled her slowly around. As their waltz came to a end in a slow manner he leaned in and gave her a kiss. Elizabeth faced turned to the color of a tomato. She let go of his hands and walked away from him and stared at something that was to of a incredible interest then the moment in her position. He chuckled and wrapped his arms around her waist and whispered in her, "No need to be shy. I'll be gentle, I won't bite, and I will especially be kind to you." He cooed his words in a quiet tone. He then continued, "I will be right back with some drinks for us."

William let go of Elizabeth and and walked back into the ball room to obtain some wine. As he approached the table he noticed another woman twirling away with tray full of drinks. He was about to go after he until he noticed Adrian and Peter. He walked over to them and greeted them, "Peter and Adrian. Good to see your still alive Peter and Adrian anything turn up on our missing man. I have been a little... preoccupied with a new friend." Of course he knew that Adrian would already have known what his friend was and what he wanted to do with her, but for sure that he knew that Peter did not know.

William then remembered the streak of white hair he had seen early and whispered to Adrian, "My friend Adrian I saw a streak of white hair among the crowd earlier. At first I dismissed it as you, but now that i think back to it his trousers looked nothing like yours. I think I may have found our target, but I can't be for certain if it is him. Because there is no other person who is insane enough to have crazy, but still very clean and modest which I respect very much, hair of yours around here, William then added something else to make it appear unsuspicious to Peter, "her name is Elizabeth and boy is she a wonder. If you need me....please for the love of Mary and her child don't need me." He then took two cups of wine and went back to the open balcony.

'I hope that man understands that if he needs me then come and get me because if this place is blown to bits then,' he shivered at the thought and finished his thought, 'then my chance with Elizabeth will be ruined!'

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Peter Finlay Character Portrait: Adrian W. Fenris Character Portrait: Amaryllis Starling Character Portrait: William Huntington
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#, as written by Jacopo
She introduced herself as Cassandra Bloom, the Countess’s head maid, and at once Peter knew something was off. Maids didn’t didn’t dress like that, nor would they have been out on the streets, running about, and covered in dirt like “Cassandra” had been on the morning of the Stonebridge bombing. It was also simply too much of a coincidence that she just happened to show up every time Peter was out on a job. Her mention of the “Italian guy” only served to confirm his suspicions; not many people knew Machiavelli was an Italian philosopher, after all.

Still, her speech was quite amusing. “Creature?” Peter repeated incredulously. “I wasn’t the one covered in dirt the last time we met. If I’m a bundle of trouble, you asked for it.” Shooting a glare at the white-haired gentleman who’d interrupted them (Chess, no doubt), Peter hurried after “Cassandra” and before she disappeared into the crowd.

“I’ll get that,” he said, taking the tray off her hands. “And you can tell me what your real name is.”

~

Vincent Beauregard surveyed the crowd with satisfaction, rubbing his newly shaven chin as he did so. Countess Santiago was nothing if not popular; her little Christmas Eve ball had attracted over half the aristocrats in London, if the packed ballroom as anything to go by. A massive, glittering Christmas tree had been set up in the middle of the room, glittering with decorations and ornamental presents. The boxes beneath the tree were most likely empty, as they were simply there for decoration. Pity, Vincent thought. One ought to fill those boxes with something for the guests. A nice surprise, perhaps.

Or not so nice, considering what he had planned.

After a rather unfortunate brush with the police, Vincent knew it would be suicide to attend the Countess’s ball under his usual guise. But that didn’t stop him; he’d simply shaved his beard, dyed his hair, and applied for a position as a waiter. The serving staff was always running low this time of year; getting into the ball had been child’s play.

Now, he thought as he looked over the stairs, all he had to do was set the surprise.

It would have been significantly easier had he gotten away from Stonebridge untracked. But even though he’d evaded capture, it had been a close thing; his brush with the guilds of London had been close, too close. And, as he’d been warned, they were here tonight. Vincent’s sources were not ignorant, however, and he had come this evening knowing full well what he was up against. He didn’t know much about the hunter from Machiavelli- nobody did, the guild was so damn secretive. It was hard enough figuring out whether Machiavelli would even be here- but Vincent was willing to bet that they were. Machiavelli would never miss out on the action.

Brooks’s hunters had been a little easier to track down. To the best of Vincent’s knowledge there were two of them here tonight, one Mr. Adrian Fenris, whom he’d immediately spotted by his distinctive white hair, and another Mr. William Huntington. Two of Brooks’s best hunters; Vincent was almost flattered he was receiving so much attention.

Finally, from the Underworld, there was Peter Finlay, the boy who should have been dead. Vincent had a good source of intel on the kid, from a source who knew him quite…ah, intimately. Or rather, knew. By the time his briefing was finished, Vincent probably knew more about Peter than his own friends did- he was a brilliant shot, tended to drift towards the alcohol, and had irritatingly sharp eyes.

Speaking of whom…Vincent scanned the crowd until he found the boy, who from this distance appeared to be trying (and failing) to seduce a serving girl. Wait for it… After a painful moment of inaction, Peter’s gaze drifted towards the staircase, and then met Vincent’s stare head on.

Vincent turned, as if about to leave, and then cast a glance at the Christmas tree, suppressing the urge to laugh out loud as Peter’s expression turned from confusion to horror. Yes, you know what’s in that box, don’t you?

It was a party, after all. Why not make things fun? Vincent could have gotten away with the bombing, but it’d be much more interesting to see the hunters as they were forced to make a decision- find the bomb before it detonated, or find the bomber. Lives or money?

Up to you, Mr. Finlay.

~

He means to blow this entire place up. The adrenaline was kicked in. Thankfully, Peter had been trained to deal with high-pressure situations like this. He knew what to do.

Peter lurched forward under the pretense of stumbling, one arm holding the tray upwards and the other grabbing “Cassandra”’s shoulder as if for balance. “Look, I don’t know what Guild you’re working for,” Peter murmured into her ear, scanning the crowd intently over her shoulder. “But I want you find a man named Geoffrey Montguard- he’s the one with blonde hair in the black suit, he’s right there, look-” Peter pointed at Geoffrey “-and tell him…ah, tell him Peter said the game’s up. He’ll know what I meant. Please. Go. Right now.

Letting go of the girl’s shoulder, Peter shoved the tray into the arms of some random bypasser and sprinted towards the stairs. Beauregard caught his eye again and gave him another look, smiling as if disappointed, then shook his head and disappeared into the hallway.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Peter Finlay Character Portrait: Adrian W. Fenris Character Portrait: Amaryllis Starling Character Portrait: William Huntington
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#, as written by Byte
Adrian W. Fenris
The Masquerade, Ballroom

Those eyes... Those exotic, differently coloured eyes. After paying no mind to the white-haired boy, the girl went back to, well, more or less making her stand with the man who had so rudely blamed her for the bumping. Adrian took that moment to observe the female a tad closer. Red hair... The way she spoke. It made sense that these two were acquainted, of sorts.

He just smiled as he glued all the pieces together, and concluded that this was, indeed, the girl he had seen last week. Then, the man she was talking to...? Peter, unless this stranger was prone to bumping into people at every turn. At least Chess had his questions, and guesses answered. A whole band of vigilantes had gotten the same idea, and they all were, no doubt, targeting the same bloke.

“I apologize, Sir, for making you have to hear such things. If I can be of any assistance to you, please, just ask.”

Adrian nodded, while answering her bow with one of his own. “There was no harm done. I see my urge to help was unneeded.” He smiled in a gently manner, straightening his back, and watching the girl trail off into the crowd. “Such a charming lady. Don't you think, Mr. Finlay?” Chess grinned, his eyes sparkling with glee as he spoke of the boy's surname.

There was no response, and the 'Pan' flew off to Neverland once more. Right at that exact moment, The Gentleman approached his friend, speaking with a tone, as though he was having a great time. Not a surprise, as William was a man who could wind ones being around his fingers. Even more so than Adrian, but there was no comparison as they both have different ways of persuasion.

“I believe we are only missing one participant, still. But all of our dear friends are here.” As Chess answered William's question, he took another observant look at the scenery. The was a niggling concern in his mind, that they weren't going to leave without a nice firework. As was obvious. Why else would their Bomber Man be here?

“Oh, Mr. Huntington, do enjoy your female companion for this evening.” Don't need him? William wasn't just here to seduce pretty women, there was a criminal to catch, or kill if the situations warrants. Because alive would never do, crooks rarely agree on cooperation. If only they'd reveal themselves, so Adrian could quit being in one room with rival vigilantes. Didn't mean he couldn't keep an eye on the student, and the serving girl, though.

As if on cue, Adrian realized the cards were revealed. Although barely able to spot him, let alone read his expression, the white-haired vigilante followed the trial of Peter's eyes. Then, following the eyes of the person the student was staring at, which ended Adrian's sight on the large Christmas tree that had been most beautifully decorated with Christmas lights, and colourful decorations.

“Oh dear.” Adrian muttered under his breath as that horrific expression of Peter, and the smile of the butler on the stairway explained it all. Someone, had already gone and left himself a parting gift. Chess chuckled to hide his fright for what was in the 'gift', and attempted to locate his fellow hunter.

The white-haired male found his friend, comfortably in the company of a damsel. With no hesitation, Adrian approached the two, and bowed in an apologetic manner. “I am terribly sorry for this interruption.” He rose up from his bow, turning to the lady that accompanied The Gentleman. “My apologies, ma'am. May I borrow Mr. Huntington from you, there are matters of utmost importance I must discuss with him immediately.”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amaryllis Starling
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"I'll get that--" said a voice behind her and the tray was swept out of her hands.

Amaryllis, irritated that Peter had followed, tried to grab the tray back from his grasp but to no avail. Her brows furrowed, she crossed her arms and glared at him. "Do you seem to have a problem with me, Sir? I'm sorry, but I have no intention of talking to you for any--"

“--And you can tell me what your real name is," he finished, cutting her words right out of her mouth.

She blinked. Frustration towards herself was possibly greater than the frustration he was causing her. It was only a matter of time before he would have discovered the truth, but it was extremely irritating the situation she'd been pitted up against: meeting three hunters in one day, for example, was the beginning of her bad luck. But this man, she'd run into him a good three times now and he seemed adamant about getting her real identity.

"Oh, you don't believe me?" she asked with a look of skepticism. “What, are you expecting me to be some sort of criminal like you? Think again. And leave me alone, would you? If you don’t, I’ll have to call security to relieve you of the party.” Eyes glowering at him, she made to turn and walk away, but he suddenly raised the tray upwards and grabbed her by the shoulder.

“Look, I don’t know what Guild you’re working for,” he spoke quietly, but words brushing against her ear. “But I want you find a man named Geoffrey Montguard- he’s the one with blonde hair in the black suit, he’s right there, look-” she craned her neck to see the man only to find herself rather flustered by how close she was to him, a completely unintentional closeness at that (closeness rarely bothered her, but then again she was the one who always seemed to be the one who worked well with closeness if she was in control of the situation) “-and tell him…ah, tell him Peter said the game’s up. He’ll know what I meant. Please. Go. Right now.”

Without another word, Peter was weaving through the crowds of guests. Amara’s mind was already grasping the situation. After removing the veil (it was proving no use, anyway), she scanned the crowd, searching for the familiar face of her target and—there! She initially moved in his direction, but it was at that point that she remembered Peter’s request.

“Might as well just tell more people I’m a hunter, eh?” she growled quietly to herself, sarcasm dripping from her words.

Turning on her heel, literally and theoretically, the redhead hurried straight towards the blonde man Peter had pointed out and reached him in a matter of seconds. Grabbing him by the tie, she tugged his face down to her level.

“Special message for Geoffrey Monteguard,” she said sweetly before her tone changed into the utmost seriousness. “There’s a bomb going to go off in this building and if I were you, good Sir, I’d consider helping Peter Pan keep it from killing all of my guests.” Another innocent smile and Amara released him, once more turning completely in the opposite direction and delving straight into the crowd.

The next person she found herself appearing in front of was Ella Santiago. The woman was standing off to the side, watching the dancers with a soft expression. Amaryllis stopped right in front of her and curtsied politely. “Mistress, I think it would be in our guests best interests to take the party outside. I’ve checked the temperature and the large outdoor patio would be a fine place to move the party. If you would carefully think over this request, I’ll be returning to my work.” Curtsying one more, she left the woman.

While talking – or more like being held captive – to Peter, she couldn’t have helped but notice a strangely familiar man watching them. Only now did she realize this man’s identity. Mentally kicking herself, she tossed her heels into one of the corners and proceeded after her target barefooted.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adrian W. Fenris Character Portrait: William Huntington
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#, as written by Genre
William and Elizabeth hid together very close to each other to avoid attention to be drawn at them. As William was about to make the first move Adrian pulled him out saying, “My apologies, ma'am. May I borrow Mr. Huntington from you, there are matters of utmost importance I must discuss with him immediately."

"B-b-b-but. Ah bloody hell Adrian!" William cussed at Adrian.

"I'll be back for you my love!" William shouted to Elizabeth.

"Crying out loud Adrian I specifically told you not to get me! I mean unless there was a...." Then it dawned to him the severity of the situation and cussed back at Adrian, "I'll make a bloody corpse out of you if I hear a peep from you to the guild master."

William organized his thoughts quickly and then told Adrian, "If this guy wants to blow up this place he is gonna need a fair size amount of explosives to get it done. Even then though he would need access to a lot of places in this building to do major damage to it and to kill us with it. So I am assuming he would have had to worm his way into the services of the Countess to get that access. Also he will need time to escape the radius and debris that will be falling out of the sky safely. My guess will be that this bomb will be in a room which is capable of taking down the whole building otherwise only that chunk would be blown. Seeing as how this man has been playing I will assume he means to kill us all within the explosion. So for him to make it ou and watch his plan unfold he would either have another helping him or he would need a very a d I mean long fuse to make it a safe distance to watch. If it were that long fuse then hell we better start searching or running like the dickens. You following what I am saying Adrian? No matter. I need you to get as many people to who you think will be able to keep composure a d search for this bomb. When you find it then come find me. I will find a way to difuse." Wi that William ran into the crowd in search of the bomb. He stopped and started to think through his plan carefully.

"I am missing something here....it can't be this simple...can it? I really hate this guy. And he is gonna pay for ruining my night with Elizabeth." Then coherently aloud, "You bloody bomber when I get my hands on you. You are gonna wish you were dead and in hell by the time I am done with you!"

Shouting in the middle of the crowd was not th strongest decision Willam made today as people stated to clear away from him and gave hm strange looks as if he were a crazy man.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Peter Finlay Character Portrait: Amaryllis Starling
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#, as written by Jacopo
Thankfully, “Cassandra” didn’t argue; Peter watched her head straight towards Geoffrey, satisfied, and then refocused his attention on reaching Beauregard. By the time he had made it to the other side of the ballroom, Beauregard had slipped from his sight again; cursing, Peter looked around and took the only logical route- up the stairs. If Beauregard went through either hallway, he would encounter the Bainbridge brothers, who had been positioned outside as guards. And if he knew I was here, then he must know that much…

Up, up he went, climbing up the spiral staircase, mind racing frantically as he tried to figure out where Beauregard had gone.

Then he reached the top of the stairs, and a cane came swinging at him, smashing him hard across the chest. Peter staggered against the bannister, winded, scrabbling for his gun-

“Oh, no you don’t.” Peter heard a bored voice over his head, and then pain exploded in his left arm arm as the cane came down again. Groaning, Peter thudded back against the banister, staring dazedly at the figure standing over him. Beauregard.

“Peter Finlay, nineteen years old, member of the Underworld.” Beauregard said, as if he were a schoolboy reciting his lessons. “Loves a good party, but awkward at more aristocratic affairs. You also claim to be ambidextrous, but you shoot just a tad better with your left arm.”

“No one knows that,” Peter muttered, trying to get up. “No one but-“

“Victoria,” Beauregard said, sounding thoroughly amused. “Lovely girl, isn’t she? Told me everything she knew about you, the guilds, Brooks’s… anyhow, how about I break your arms so that you’ll never be even able to hold a gun ever again?”

He brought the cane down once again, but this time Peter was ready. He caught the cane with his right arm just before it hit him and wrenched hard, throwing Beauregard off his balance. Peter used the momentum to pull himself up, sending the cane flying over the bannister into the crowd below.

For a moment he and Beauregard stood face to face with each other, off-guard, and then Peter lunged at the bomber, throwing his fists for all that he was worth. Should have let Geoffrey teach me how to box… Peter’s skill set as a bounty hunter was rather limited; he could shoot, run, and not much else- which became glaringly obvious as Beauregard quickly got the upper hand, blocking Peter’s attacks with relative ease.

“She also told me that you’re not so good up close,” Beauregard teased, jamming his elbow at the side of Peter’s head. By some miracle, Peter ducked, and reached inside his jacket for his shotgun.

“Persistent, aren’t you? Stay away from the guns, little Finlay, you’ll hurt yourself.” Beauregard aimed a solid blow at Peter’s shoulder, nearly dislocating it. Staggering, Peter attempted another flurry of attacks, only to have Beauregard wrestle him into immobility, one arm forced behind his back. Beauregard put his other hand on Peter’s collar and pulled his head back, driving him back against the bannister so that Peter was bending backwards. Peter was completely incapacitated, unable to do anything but stare frantically at the long drop to the marble floor below.

"Yes," Beauregard murmured. "Pretty long drop, isn't it? Don't think you'll be quite so agile after you hit the bottom. Shall I send you over, then?"

Peter struggled to no avail. “Kill me and you’ll bring the entire Underworld on your head,” he gasped. “You might be a pretty skilled bomber, but you’re nothing against the Guilds.”

“Oh, I doubt it.” Beauregard chuckled. “You’re dealing with forces you wouldn’t even begin to understand.” He pressed downwards, pushing Peter even further over the bannister. “Grow up, Peter Pan.”

~

As the surprisingly lovely red-haired girl delivered a message that could only be from Peter before dashing off herself, Geoffrey Montguard snapped into focus for the first time that evening. The game’s up… That could only mean one thing. Beauregard meant to turn the place into a fireball, and the bombs had already been set.

Cursing, Geoffrey ran towards the Christmas tree. He was something of an expert when it came to explosives, but he was better at setting them, not preventing them from going off. He was a bounty hunter, not law enforcement. Protecting the populace wasn’t his concern. His concern was simply apprehending the criminals.

But he saw Peter dashing up the stairs, and with a heavy sigh, realized that the task to defuse the bomb was all his. But where…?

Well, the giant Christmas tree in the middle of the ballroom seemed like a pretty good place if Beauregard’s plot was to kill everyone inside. Jaw clenched, Geoffrey ran towards the Christmas tree and began searching through the presents like a deranged kid on Christmas day. But even if he found the bomb, he wasn’t sure if he’d know how to neutralize it. Fuck fuck fuck fuck…

~

By the time Beauregard had wrestled Peter against the bannister, the ballroom had begun to devolve into chaos. Guests flurried around the room in a state of panic, wondering what was going on and why there were so many attendees running around as if their lives depended on it. Countess Ella Santiago stood at the foot of the staircase, watching the commotion with a growing sense of dread. She had known this was going to happen, as soon as the boy, Anthony Fitzgerald, mentioned Victoria.

What kind of mess have I gotten into? she wondered desperately. What’s going on? She had no enemies she could think of, no ties to underground activities…except…Victoria.

Regardless, she had to clear the room, especially after the warning from Cassandra (who, the Countess had begun to suspect, was not really a maid at all.) She grabbed the arm of her butler as he passed by and ordered, “Lead the guests outside, to the patio. Tell them I wish them all to see the snowflakes.”

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Character Portrait: Amaryllis Starling
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In the process of running after Beauregard, Amaryllis noted the presence of a familiar elderly man wading through the crowds with eyebrows furrowed. She quickly dashed towards him, not bothering any longer to pretend she was just a maid. With expert coordination she leapt, weaved, and darted through the crowd. She nearly crashed into him, but at the last moment he sidestepped, grabbed her by the arm, and spun her around efficiently to face him.

“Where is the bomb?” Kallen asked, grey eyes inspecting the room closely. “I might be able to help keep it from blowing the roof off this place.”

“You know how to…? Nevermind. I don’t know,” she admitted quickly. “Try over by the Christmas tree. A man by the name of Geoffrey should be over there looking for it. Tell him the redhead sent you to help.”

He gazed at her for a couple of moments, a frown upon his lips, before nodding. “Be careful,” he said gently and after pressing a kiss to her forehead, the gentleman headed towards the Christmas tree.

Amara turned her attention back to the staircase where she realized she was missing the party. Beauregard practically had Peter dangling over the edge of the banister at this point and she was standing there as if her world wasn’t about to end. Blinking into action, the redhead scurried back through the chaos and bounded up the stairs two by two, her bare feet making nearly no noise upon the steps.

“I guess I overestimated your ability, Peter,” she called as she finally reached the top.

With stunning speed, the redhead twisted 360 degrees, in the process producing the two knifes she’d had sheathed at her thigh. Both held delicately in her right hand, she whipped around and threw both weapons at Beauregard; one surged towards his shoulder, the other towards his thigh. Immediately after, she shot forward with another knife in hand, this time going straight for his neck.

-------

Downstairs, Kallen struggled through the chaos of the party. Guests were beginning to pour out onto the patio, which was making the process of reaching the tree quite a lot harder. But he made it eventually and once there he hurried over to help pick through the gifts.

“I’m going to guess your name is Geoffrey?” he asked the blonde man who was already tearing through the gifts. He carefully began picking through the lighter gifts, unable to handle the larger ones. “I’ve been sent by the redhead to assist you if need be. I have prior knowledge to diffusing a bomb.”

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Character Portrait: Peter Finlay Character Portrait: Adrian W. Fenris Character Portrait: Amaryllis Starling
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#, as written by Byte
Adrian W. Fenris
The Masquerade, Ballroom

Unless a problem. Well, they had one, and boy was it a major one at that. Now if William could stop insulting his partner, and start worrying about the fact that there was a certain bomb about to explode, and let us not forget killing a few dozen people in the process. Maybe then, they could finally get this mission over with.

As they both took a rather casual walk through the ballroom, The Gentleman began analysing the situation, and how to possibly deal with it. Not taking into consideration that he was ordering Adrian around while doing so. “Look, William.” The white-haired man began, holding his left hand in front of the rambling hunter, signaling for him to stop talking to him. “Explosives are your expertise, and more importantly, have little interest for me. You just go ahead and diffuse the bloody present, I will talk with our friend who planned all this.”

If only he knew how. Brooks' wasn't the only guild who had send their pawns, and most other guilds were more fond of a... pysical approach, rather than trying to talk their way to succes. During their friendly banter, all guests were panicking about what was happening, trying their best to get somewhere less... chaotic. Hopefully, that would be taken care of.

Chess left his fellow member to his own fate, making his way up the long starway. Really, why was it that all rich people had a need for such a thing. It took up the majority of the room, and had no purpose whatsoever. Well, aside from making a dramatic entrance, maybe. That, and apparently fighting should be added to the list.

Christ! Adrian had made a terrible decision. Fighting wasn't his style, and not two, but three people had decided to enjoy a brawl right where everyone would be able to see their performance. The supposed target, had Peter locked, and hanging half-way over the bannister. Second, the girl from before made an attempt to take down the man by tossing a few cheese knives vaguely in his direction.

Chess was, indeed, a bit entertained by this. Showing his appreciation for the act, he slowly clapped as if it was a show. Hoping they had halted their fight, Adrian made his appearance known. (More than it already was, anyway.) “Congratulations, truly my decision to watch up-close was a great one indeed.” The white-haired vigilante removed the black mask from his face, smirking as he stepped closer, though still quite a few inches away from the actual participants of the fray.

“Shame though, that the majority of your audience does not appreciate your performances. Look, they're all trying their best to flee the theater.” Chess gestured down at the ballroom floor. Every guest was making their way to the patio, maybe not in a fashionable manner, but still. Couldn't blame them, humans are terrible at fleeing a scene when panicked. Adrian chuckled, sliding his hands in either pockets of his leggings, before stepping a bit to the side, and waiting for them to carry on with their violent ways.

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Character Portrait: Peter Finlay
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William Huntington

"I'm not lustful...just very curious, madame."

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Frank Gregory

American Civil War veteran turned manhunter

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Peter Finlay

Don't give yourself an aneurysm now, I'm only here to assassinate you.

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Character Portrait: Peter Finlay
Peter Finlay

Don't give yourself an aneurysm now, I'm only here to assassinate you.

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William Huntington

"I'm not lustful...just very curious, madame."

Character Portrait: Frank Gregory
Frank Gregory

American Civil War veteran turned manhunter

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Character Portrait: Frank Gregory
Frank Gregory

American Civil War veteran turned manhunter

Character Portrait: Peter Finlay
Peter Finlay

Don't give yourself an aneurysm now, I'm only here to assassinate you.

Character Portrait: William Huntington
William Huntington

"I'm not lustful...just very curious, madame."


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