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Good Evening, Monsters! Good Evening, Abe!

More Phenomenal Earth

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a part of Good Evening, Monsters! Good Evening, Abe!, by Wudgeous.

None

Wudgeous holds sovereignty over More Phenomenal Earth, giving them the ability to make limited changes.

442 readers have been here.

Setting

Default Location for Good Evening, Abe! Good Evening, Monsters!
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Minimap

More Phenomenal Earth is a part of Good Evening, Monsters! Good Evening, Abe!.

7 Characters Here

Sallie Harris [13] "If you want something done right, send a woman in to do the job for you, then stay out of her way."
Micah Colby Ames [12] "Quando il buio della sera maschera il mio viso... solo allora potrei dirti certe cose."
Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger [11] "It's best for you to remember one thing about me, I'm better than you...so do you want to roll in the hay?"
Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi [11] "Better to be hated for what you are than loved for what you are not."
Constantine Augustus Meyac [10] "Don't worry, they'll remember. I'm sending them your finger as memorabilia."
Sable Gossamer Valante [10] "I've been there a thousand times. You hate your pulse because it thinks you're still alive and everything's wrong."
Annabelle Reed [10] "Now dear, the one thing I learned about life, if anything, is that folk are always changing. Changing their minds, changing their hearts, and changing their allegiences. Folks are destined to change but it sure don't mean I have to change with them.

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi Character Portrait: Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sable Gossamer Valante Character Portrait: Sallie Harris Character Portrait: Annabelle Reed Character Portrait: Constantine Augustus Meyac
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KEY

Ebenezer
Your employer, kindly benefactor, and all-around fatherly figure. You've never seen his face, unless you count the Benjamins (or Queen Elizabeths or whoever mars your currency with their sagely visage).

Allies
Folks openly professed to be in cahoots with old Abe, most notably mission guides. The guides grade performance, all in all acting as a pair of eyes away from home. The helpfulness and openness of allies range, however--not all of them will like being useful. You very probably can't kill them without a severe cut in the salary.

Enemies
Folks openly against Ebenezer or his friends, and likely wanted dead for the effort. Poor jerks. You can try to talk to them, because they will have more to say than regular enemies, but ultimately you cannot go home and do your laundry until you've killed them.

???
Alliance unknown for these NPCs! They could be smallfry enemies, or they could vaguely want to further your cause.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Sallie Harris
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To say that Sallie was worried about the evening's itinerary was, if one was being extremely conservative, the understatement of the century. Every bone in her body, every nerve from the tip of her toes to the top of her head, every synapse firing off inside her thick little skull was screaming that meeting strangers on an unfamiliar dock in the dark was a bad idea, especially when several of them could potentially rip her throat out with their teeth. She had seen more than her fair share of hapless young girls, lured out into the night by this tantalizing proposition or that, sometimes by strangers, sometimes by close friends...and she'd seen how those girls had ended up, usually on the other side of thick surgical gloves with a medical examiner reading out his report.

But she'd been stuck in the cabin of an eighteen-wheeler off and on for the last six months with nothing so much as a heinous accident to distract her from her troubles, and damn it all, Sallie was beginning to get restless. If they paycheck was all she'd been offered, if it had been a different job, she might have been less inclined to show tonight—she'd have told that voice on the other end of the line where he could stick his death threats, and that would have been the end of that. He'd known, though, through some manner of thievery or witchcraft or skulking around and calling it recon. He'd been right on the nose, in fact, calling her out on how much she missed the thrill of it all.

And here she was. It was like the start of some overly dramatic mystery film, the sort they didn't make anymore because the kids thought they were too cheesy. Or, she thought....Isn't there a Stephen King novel that started this way? If there isn't, it's only a matter of time. She thought about what happened to the characters in the openings of Stephen King novels, and then tried to unthink it. That was easier said than done.

By the time Sallie pulled up to the docks in the boxy white Ford, the sputtering engine nearly as silent as a children's toy machine gun, the anxiety had all but subsided, converted into nervous energy (and if she had to be honest with herself, a mote of excitement). She parked as close as she thought was wise, and gave the area a quick sweep before unlocking the doors. Had anyone arrived already? On a distant crate, she saw what might have been a man—or it might have been a tarp, or a particularly unfortunate piece of artwork. At this distance, with the pale moon glinting off the water behind, she couldn't tell for certain.

Best to assume someone was already here, she supposed.

Sallie double, then triple checked her gun, making sure the holster was secure. She wasn't going to be the one to show up without a weapon, especially considering she hadn't gotten used to the natural ones just yet. Content to find that she was all strapped in, the young woman tied a sweater around her waist extracted a case from the trunk of her car. It wasn't a very large case—a few practical changes of clothes, extra ammunition, a small bottle of perfume in case someone got suspicious, and enough cigarettes to last her a week or so were all she'd bothered to bring along on this little excursion, barring essentials like her toothbrush. She wasn't going on vacation, after all.

Car shut, locked, and hopefully in an unobtrusive enough place that it would still be there when she returned, Sallie made her way over to the meeting point she'd been given.

It was a man, she discovered a moment later, seated on a sizeable crate. He wasn't moving very much. As a matter of fact, as far as she could tell, he wasn't moving at all. For a second, Sallie found herself wondering if that was normal behavior for the sort of person that would have been called out on this sort of mission. It only took a second, though—then it occurred to her that "normal" was perhaps not a term she should try to apply to any situation henceforth.

Not one to mince words, Sallie sat down on the wooden planks beneath the crate, pulling the case into her lap and letting one hand fall to her hip, just in case. She'd relax when there were more of them about, but not a moment sooner. Who knew what sort of miscreant got propositioned for this kind of mission?

My kind of miscreant, apparently, she thought to herself, in an effort to reprimand her poor decision. She didn't feel especially corrected, even as far as self-chastising went. More than anything, she felt a little proud, and a little more excited to be doing something with her life again.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sallie Harris
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#, as written by Ezarael
Wolfgang „Wolf“ von Krieger


“No, Mr. von Krieger you will not be the Captain of the ship nor will there be time for fun and games. There is work to be done.”

A feeble attempt at making static sound filtered through the receiver of Abe’s phone. Wolfgang was intent upon claiming plausible deniability of his responsibilities concerning this trip. Sure, maybe he was breaking the rules by intentionally drowning out the sound of Abe’s voice, well in all honesty that was not possible, his ears were so sensitive that even with the phone turned down to the lowest volume possible he could still clearly understand the words spoken, but he could always feign ignorance with the best of them.

“What’s static sound I can’t static sound losing recpet-static sound With the end of the charade he finally hung up his phone and tossed the brick away. Maybe in a few years these cellphones will be a bit more convenient, but at the moment they’re just a nuisance. Sure it was expensive, but it’s not like I paid for it. Indeed the portable phone was just one of many perks he had this Abe person purchase for him before he agreed to take any work from the man. What he just did could be considered both wasteful and rude, sure, but it was not like he needed this job or anything. It definitely would help pay for his monthly quelling, but by no means could you say he depended upon this extra income.

The sound of flip-flops plodded along loudly as Wolfgang strolled down the docks towards his intended destination. By the looks of his you might assume Captain Ron was setting sail on yet another epic voyage, what with the unbuttoned button-down tropical shirt flailing in the breeze, white captain’s hat tilted off to the left, and comfortable shorts revealing a pair of muscular yet very pale shanks. Well, you might think I was Captain Ron if Kurt Russel was ten times as handsome and did not wear a patch in the movie! The German engineer guffawed loudly at his joke, surely anyone would have if they had been nearby, and threw his head back in merriment as he continued along happily.

On his right side was being carried a rather large duffle bag with a rather odd assortment of supposed necessities carelessly tossed inside, almost as if the traveler had merely scooped the items from a large bin. He had brought with him several changes of clothes, all very comfortable once might notice, several hygiene related items, of course, several magazines ranging from mathematics to pornography, all very necessary of course, and there also happened to be a large assortment of lubricant and condoms strewn about as well, just in case.

The salty-air stung his nostrils as the scent nearly over-powered his delicate sense of smell, but that was not the only lingering scent on the air. Whenever the wind blew his direction the werewolf would catch the scent of two individuals up ahead, one was obviously human, but the other was something else entirely. The strange one smelled of…death, oddly enough as that may be. His employer had informed him that he would be working with other supernatural beings, ranging from vampires to what have you, but he was never told they would smell so…repulsive!

Ach mein Gott, at least the salt will take away from that disgusting smell.

Luckily the docks were not a massive construction; it only took him a few short minutes to reach where he wanted, and when Wolfgang approached the two others who had arrived so far he was rather amused. The human was very thin, all skin and bones as they said here in America, but not much shorter than Wolfgang himself. He had a strange look about him, and a sense of danger pervaded from his scent, like he was a seasoned killer who did it for the thrills. The other, the dead smelling one, was actually a somewhat attractive female. Sure, she smelled awful, was extremely thin and frail looking, and didn’t seem very friendly to tell the truth, but Wolfgang’s shorts began to tighten up very quickly.

A broad grin spread across his face as he continued towards his two new associates and proceeded to seat himself next to the woman. His nose visibly crinkled up as the pungent odor was so blatantly obvious, but there were more important things to worry about right now, like the loss of blood from his brain. “Hello my little Liebschen, my name is Wolfgang von Krieger. Would you care to play fetch?“

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi Character Portrait: Wolfgan Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sable Gossamer Valante Character Portrait: Sallie Harris Character Portrait: Annabelle Reed Character Portrait: Constantine Augustus Meyac
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#, as written by Deallo
The windows were let down a bit to let the night air rush into the speeding car. Loud salsa music escaped the radio and blared outside of the confines of the powder blue Ford sedan, going 90km/h with no signs of slowing down in sight. Observers who might've caught a glimpse at the speeding vehicle would've thought it belonged to some young reckless driver who just got their license or a thief who might've stolen the car. Of course, they were wrong.

It was the driving of an elderly woman who was all the more glad to be alive and free.

Not the "I'm glad I woke up today" alive either, like some spry elderly gentlemen, but the "I'm glad I didn't get in the shot in the face" alive that criminals often face in a day to day basis. It was because of Ebenezer, even if by accident, that she's managed to get behind the wheel of a car instead of shot, liquified, dumped, and forgotten. Driving was also a joy she enjoyed too much. Back in Mexico, everything needed discretion, driving was off-limits unless the police were a little too close for comfort and an operation needed to be evacuated. Now, she drive free and fast, the way driving was meant to be. Annabelle couldn't understand how people drove so slowly like they were scared. Excruciatingly painful is what it must feel like to drive slow. There was no rush, no excitement, from being able to take control of a strong speed machine, and just using it to trot along the roads. It needed to gallop, speed down the roads, as cars were meant to.

If only it wasn't so dangerous; everyone would've been doing it. Police would've chased her if there were more patrols that night but as luck would behold there wasn't any that had met her. She swerved around cars and turned, nearly running over a young man who was running across the street to get to a bank, cutting off a taxi, scratching it's side, the blue paint scratching off the bumper. As Annabelle was driving away, she noticed the taxi was either following her trail, or going the same direction as her. Obscenities were shouted from the drivers side of the taxi but she was going too fast and was too far to listen in. She eyed the taxi in the rear view mirror, seemingly speeding up behind her, pupils flashing back and forth to the front of the road then to the yellow car.

Seconds were passing away before beads of sweat started forming on her aged forehead and her teeth started to lightly bite her lower lip. Suddenly a loud screeching pierced the air, the smell of burnt rubber crinkling any nearby nose, powder blue Ford sedan ducking into an alley and out the other side. Annabelle turned off the radio and made a few more turns to make sure the taxi didn't follow her. The paranoia instilled in her from years of working with The Cartel were satiated as the taxi was nowhere in sight.

The docks were now in sight but the car was in no speed near stopping. Headlights illuminated the three figures and for a brief moment; seemed like it was destined to run them over at top speeds until the brakes were slammed. The screeching was enough to pain the ears and the smell of burnt rubber filled the air. The engine hummed for a moment, headlights illuminating everyone on the docks before the ignition key was turned and pulled. Annabelle took a deep breath and checked herself, padding the Kevlar jacket, and her husbands black trench coat she had on. There were four pockets inside the coat, two on each side, and each had a revolver. Her prized M1 was in a shoulder holster, seeing as how much work she put into it, it was worth it to at least buy a proper holster for it. She brought her white purse along and had it hang in her right hand; not for stylish purposes but just in case anything happened, she could make a quick grab for the M1, which would take one solid movement.

Despite Ebenezer's kindness; paranoia was still creeping up. Rightfully so, at that.

She exited the car door and slammed it behind her before she opened up the back door, the cold bite of the wind rushing over her. "Darn it." Ana silently cursed herself, spotting the luggage bag containing the rest of her equipment trapped under the back seat, where she'd have to force it out.

Her head twisted, spotting the solitary individual on the dock, and moved towards him. Annabelle did look rather odd, suiting black dress pants, a blue Hawaiian shirt with a Kevlar jacket underneath and a trenchcoat. Almost as odd as the man, who at this distance, could see he was sitting on a crate.

In any regular circumstances, she would've tried to pull out the bag herself had it not been filled with munitions and weighed heavily. The Texan didn't see it fit to bother the couple either; as it would've been very rude. She smiled sweetly at the strange man before she spoke to him.

"Excuse me dear but can you help me? One of my bags is stuck in the backseat of the car and I can't seem to get it out. If only a strong man could help me..." Annabelle said, waiting for either him to help her, or wave her away...but right arm was precariously up, holding the purse by the forearm, and across the M1 in case she was speaking to some crazy man.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi Character Portrait: Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sable Gossamer Valante Character Portrait: Sallie Harris
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An obtrusive amount of paper towel, skewed assortments of scented hand sanitizer, an unnecessary amount of chlorhexidine gluconate hand sanitizing liquids, organized slew of gloves tucked within the confines of the walkway dresser, cupboards chalk-full of bleach containers, and a myriad of colourful Kleenex boxes placed, calculatingly, thoughtfully, throughout the expanse of the apartment complex. It was every germaphobes paradise, so clean, so deliciously palpable. Reminiscent of a hospital, minus the sickly, scummy-faced individuals inhabiting uncomfortable chairs. Flat surfaces could be, quite literally, eaten from – though, that'd be really gross and ruin their continuous efforts to continue living in the cleanest, most immaculate, environment possible.

Sable had always been meticulous about his hygiene, even more so now that his roommate, Balthazar, had entered his private life. They'd been fast friends, despite the obvious gap in abilities and physical prowess, in their mutual abhorrence for everything dirty and disgustingly filthy. He showered twice a day (for ten minutes exactly), had a standing monthly appointment for his hair, and washed his hands before every meal. Slathering on hand sanitizer, as his repetitive ritual, didn't count. Pride, self-respect, and mild, recurrent, urges merely insisted that they kept an organized, pristine house. Every inch of every room retains the dignity of frayed ends tucked in, or simply removed with the snip-snip-snip of scissors, stains bleached with careful hands, and the absence of gathering dust. Quite honestly, it's Balthazar's interior decorating sense that keeps the apartment from looking like an out-of-place funeral home – and there's a couple of adult cats skulking around the corners, balefully regarding whoever is invading their territory. He wouldn't have been surprised if he'd found out that Balthazar ritually plopped them on his lap to brush out their fur because their coats, their coats, were perfect. Lamplight’s and interesting light fixtures were artfully anchored to the tiered ceiling, sharing an uncanny resemblance to studio lights.

Roomy bookcases lined the café au lait-coloured walls. Sable hadn't had the chance to peruse them, but honestly, he wasn't much of a reader, anyway. Beyond, ironically, dirty magazines of artistically posed nudes and the no-nonsense novel Skinny Bitch or romanticist novels like Twilight: his pursuits of literacy abruptly ended in a faint spit of boredom. Balthazar had been trying, unsuccessfully, to intrigue Sable's affronted senses of proficiency by nonchalantly leaving books in his room, on the dresser, on the night table, next to the toaster. Even if Sable annoyed him with his utter ignorance, his clumsiness, his awful vocabulary skills – they were, admittedly, two awkward ducklings with a penchant for sanitation. Hadn't he nearly begged Balthazar to let him live with him? No one else would do. Especially not that crazy she-devil who'd flicked gum on his forehead, so long ago. He didn't forget. He never forgot anything.

Regardless of Sable's initial shortcomings, the young Vampire was getting better and better at not being so damn inept, so damn useless. He wasn't bad singer, either, so that's probably why Balthazar hadn't harpooned him in the throat for belting out in the wee hours of the morning, totting his organic tea like a brandished sword. He thumped his chest, softly, with the heel of his hand. “Beggin, beggin you, so put your loving hand out baby, beggin, beggin you, put your loving hand out darlin.” Passionately, obtrusively, practically yelling, into the swirls of his coffee mug. “ Riding high', when I was king. Played it hard and fast, cause' I had everything – shit, Balthazar, how long has 'e been waiting there?

Sharp jabs indicating the window. New taxi cab, new, usually grouchy, acquaintance. Was it already time to rendezvous with the newlings?




Elegant spindle-fingers tugged insistently at the hem of a cuff that would not quite sit the way he preferred it, which was to say flat, immaculate, and perfectly in place. Once he was convinced that the burgundy silk lay exactly as it should, he glanced up into his hanging mirror and repeated the process with his shirt collar. His hair was never quite so cooperative, but with enough work, it retained a degree of pleasant dishevelment that he was given to believe was fairly usual among the general human populace.

Perhaps the bulletproof vest that he slid on over the shirt was less so, and the knives that slid noiselessly into thigh-strapped sheaths were certainly illegal in many places, but Balthazar didn’t much mind that. He tested the heft and balance of each before stowing it, sighting down the length of the blade for any stray speck of dried blood or grime, but of course he’d been meticulous when cleaning them, and there was no such stain along the pearlescent lengths of folded steel-silver alloy.

His flatmate’s bombastic singing voice drifted through the thick wooden door of his bedroom, and Balthazar smiled indulgently, which for him was nothing more than the most infinitesimal upward tilt of his lips. Should they come out of this monster-slaying venture with all relevant limbs intact, he might have to inquire of Sable whether or not he thought it best to go into performance. The last scion of House Shirazi was no mean pianist himself, and probably have taken up that profession were there not certain… matters that required his attention.

The smile, if indeed it could be characterized as that, disappeared when the thought took over, his mouth compressing instead into a thin line of displeasure. Smoothing it out, he slid the last knife home and glanced out his bay window. The vehicle there remained, and he supposed it would perhaps be time to get moving in earnest.

A venture into his walk-in closet produced a black longcoat, tailored to his frame, but with enough room to conceal his more unconventional accoutrements, and he paused only once in his subsequent egress, to rub behind the left ear of a cashmere-soft white kitten with half her tail missing. “Back soon, dove,” he murmured, not so far from purring himself.

He exited in time to catch Sable’s question. “About five minutes, now,” he replied with an air of indifference. This was not as much a product of his upbringing as his demeanor, for though his feathers were easy-enough to ruffle, if one knew the appropriate triggers, he did try for dignity at most times.

Allowing time for Sable to scramble around and grab his things, Balthazar took up his own small roll-along suitcase and double-checked that the cats had enough food and water for the intervening time, then made a mental note to call the girl downstairs anyway, just so someone would be there to check in case they were away longer than expected. She knew well enough not to touch anything, not that the elegant fusion of sleek modernity and sumptuous antiquity generally invited the perusal of anyone not wealthy enough to replace anything they unintentionally ruined. To the average person off the street, theirs was a very “look, don’t touch” abode, not that either of the two vampires raised in privilege knew that.

If you’re ready, I believe we must depart. The flight leaves in an hour and a half.




Had Balthazar proffered his melodious alliance, as his resolute pianist, then Sable would've clinched the deal in a heartbeat – or lack thereof. He was a mewling coward with the weak-willed spine of a jellyfish and somehow, someway, Balthazar still put up with him and even, with the confounded patience of a God, offered his advice, completely free of charge. His physical architecture held a semblance of shaking bones and awkwardly spindling lion-limbs, skinned and worn and concealed within a fancy-shmancy waistcoat with his sleeves folded to his knobby elbows. His lips idled at the mugs chipped corner, breathing softly across the creamy froth – it was his favourite, so he wasn't very well going to throw it out because of a little imperfection – before glancing over the steam towards Balthazar's closed door. Respectfully, he never interrupted his daily routine.

Fixated in front of the open window, draped elegantly with stylish, contemporary white sheers, Sable sighed loudly, obnoxiously, through his nose. How many days had it been since Ebenezer contacted them? It wasn't like he was counting down the days until their next mission, slashing unfortunate markings through the calendared nights like an overexcited school girl. Organic tea, unfortunately, would have to wait. “Doubt he'll wait any longer.” He placed his steaming mug in the microwave before scuttling away from the kitchen, inherently disappointed, like a spooked crustacean or a sullen hound dog. He soaked in that disappointment, fully marinated. Metaphorically born with twisted feet and the unbalance of a lopsided seesaw, Sable's swaggering footsteps transformed themselves into hopping sidesteps and mismanaged tumbles towards his neatly-made bed.

His fingers used to be bandaged from climbing rooftops, often bruised and beaten from scrambling across shingles and sandpaper tilings. His knees used to be plastered with horrendously coloured band-aids because his legs refused to bend properly – no longer, no longer. He wasn't nearly as useless. Thoughtfully, ponderously, Sable crossed his room and plucked his weapons from his bottom dresser, hidden in a secret compartment with his cleaning utilities. They were nowhere near as immaculate as Balthazar's weapons, but through him, he'd been able to learn how to properly oil and maintain his curved blades. His eyes crinkled, shining, observing the incandescent reflection of folded steel. These, in particular, had been Ebenezer's gift to him on his birthday last year since his family hadn't sent him anything at all. It might've been out of sheer goodwill or to keep him from blubbering in his bedroom. Either way, they fit perfectly into the grooves of his palms: lightweight, harmonized. Custom twin leather sheaths, mimicking a policeman’s tactical armpit holsters, hung from his bed frame, which he quickly snatched and strapped to his back. The blades themselves pointed downwards, extracted from the sheaths' in an easy, cross-armed motion – looked pretty damn cool, too.

Instead of automatically grappling with a snazzy, matching suit-jacket, Sable opted for his lucky leather jacket and zipped it halfway to obscure his dapper waistcoat. Anyone with a lick of fashion sense would've immediately declared his faux pas uncorrespondent, unbearably so – but he couldn't leave the apartment, on a mission, without his bomber jacket. It practically had magical properties. It was practically bulletproof. As quickly as he'd entered, Sable scurried out with an undignified bounce. He, offhandedly, pretended to fix the collar of his shirt and shrugged his shoulders. He pulled the lower compartments of the kitchen sink open, revealing a packed emergency knapsack, and hefted it over his shoulder before nodding thoughtfully, mentally flicking things off his checklist. “ Alright, alright, let's get going – wouldn't want to keep anyone waitin', would we?




Off Sable scuttled, like a crab with slightly mismatched limbs, and privately Balthazar had determined that if he didn’t try so hard to impress, he’d have much more success with it. Such contradictions were only observed with time and never believed when spoken frankly, so it was not a piece of advice he could simply offer as he had offered the services of an old-fashioned whetstone one idle afternoon when a mission was done but the grime remained. Earnestness would get one so few places in life; fortune favored the reserved, the reticent, the consciously-mysterious, if for no other reason than because their secrets were more likely to remain that way.

Sighing to himself, Balthazar opened the microwave and sniffed, determining the precise blend of tea Sable had used and how strong he’d made it, then dumped the contents of the chipped mug down the sink and washed it, placing it neatly into the drying rack before removing a more travel-worthy vessel from the cupboard and filling it with the still-hot water from the kettle. In went the teabag, and when this lot smelled the same as the last, he removed it and affixed the lid to the travel-mug with a decisive click. He preferred coffee, himself, but then tea had its uses.

His- what? Comrade-in-arms? Partner-in-crime? Flatmate? Only friend? For Sable was indeed all of these things to Balthazar, in some odd combination that meant only the most cursory of boundaries really existed anymore- emerged right around then, and the Persian man quite nearly pinched the bridge of his nose between his fingers, stopped only by the fact that was holding the tea in one hand and his apartment key in the other.

Shaking his head, he handed the first to Sable and dropped the second in his pocket. “You,” he pronounced slowly, “are truly hopeless.” It was uttered with all the gravity but none of the sincerity of a much more dire proclamation, but in the end all Balthazar did about it was step forward and tug at Sable’s collar until it lay flat. The jacket, he had long learned he could do nothing about, and so he left it be. Since neither man was much for prolonged physical contact, the exchange was quick, both perhaps somewhat assuaged by genuine knowledge of the other’s cleanliness, but then Balthazar stepped back, and opened the door to usher the other man through, locking it behind him and picking up his suitcase to head down the stairs.

As it turned out, they made the taxi in plenty of time, though that did him no favors when he really thought about it. Public transportation was something that Balthazar quite supported in theory, but that theory at no point involved him actually having to touch its surfaces. To distract himself (mostly unsuccessfully) from this atrocity, he spoke.

Myanmar this time, as I understand it.




How much had he jammed into that backpack? It sagged considerably on his back, reminiscent of a repulsive slug-creature trying to jockey itself on a succulent host. Yeah yeah – he watched too many horror flicks. Too many anonymous, underrated movies he'd practically forced Balthazar to watch, too. Weren't they pretty much like study materials for future missions? He rubbed the kinks already pinching his shoulders, massaged between his knobby knuckles and slender digits. If it hadn't been for the deliciously wafting smell of freshly brewed tea, Sable wouldn't have noticed Balthazar's reappearance until he stood directly in front of him. Everything Balthazar did was reprehensibly, resolutely, passive: a viper's cunning slither. A panther's rolling shoulder blades, demonstrating it's sheer competency. A gazelle's jaunting haunches prepared to leap forward with unending grace – and a number of other African animals that had the ability to tear things apart or, however unlikely, flee before you could flap your gums. He admired him. Balthazar's expression, needled, nettled, and piqued, was always tolerant. In one hand, keys. The other held his lucky mug.

Like a preening mother he – albeit sans annoying clucking – or a nitpicking old ditty who'd done it all before – Balthazar resumed what he usually did whenever Sable bustled out of his bedroom looking a complete mess, far too busy trying to keep himself firmly planted on the ground. He felt the jingling keys drop into his front pocket and happily accepted the advancing thermos, grinning like a floppy-eared puppy who'd been rewarded. This wasn't his mother. This certainly wasn't his father. But in him, even if he hadn't initially planned it, he'd found a fast friend, an appreciated mentor and an unfathomably tangled mess – not in the literal sense, heavens no – that continued to puzzle him. “And what would I do without you t' straighten me out?” He responded breezily, jutting his chin unnecessarily forward to appear inexplicably thankful without coming straight out and saying it. Cleanliness and awkward displays of emotion held hands in the dark. Straightening the straps of his heavy pack, Sable ambled out of the apartment and led the way down the stairs. Balthazar always locked the door, anyway.

Sniffing indignantly. Squinting sternly. Mentally proposing some kind of truce with the taxi cab's dusty door handle with a hastily retrieved Walgreen's antiseptic wipes. He took intensified care to wipe down the areas he knew he would touch before doing the same to Balthazar's door, then slathered a hooping blob of smelly antibacterial liquid. Might've been strawberry. “Myanmar? Burma? Whu—.” It was almost a wheeze, or an intake of breath through the gaps of his front teeth. Of course, he hadn't heard any of the details because he probably hadn't been listening. Ebenezer usually relied on Balthazar to fill him in. His eyebrows furrowed, knitting together: concerned. Grumbling noises. Slowly, cautiously, Sable entered the vehicle and flicked his wrist at the taxi cab – airport, respectively. He didn't really want to clutch the back of his seat like a child, considering he didn't know how many people had draped themselves across it prior to him, so he twisted around to face his companion like a chortled rooster.

Balthazar. Diseases. There's so many diseases there.




Mmm.” His noncommittal answer was blocked from further elaboration when the driver of the cab slammed on the brakes, swearing at great volume in Spanish invectives which Balthazar understood but had no desire to translate. Were his balance any less finely-tuned, he would have been slammed face-first into the seat in front of him. As it was, he threw a hand out sideways to spare Sable a similar fate, though his dark eyes were fixed ahead, assessing the cause of the incident.

A light blue vehicle of some kind had apparently cut off the cab in traffic, and was now speeding ahead at an impressive rate, towards the airport. Balthazar blinked and shook his head, adjusting his posture to compensate for their altered speed, and exhaled from his nose. Some people, truly.

Hadn't it been for Balthazar's feline-like reactions, then Sable's face would've mashed itself across the dashboard. His reaction time and balance were as skewed as a one-legged man attempting to ride a unicycle, so he grinned shakily, more out of pure, unadulterated fear than anything else, before steadying himself by gripping the vehicles overhead sidebar. His eyes darted towards the light blue vehicle, speeding ahead – but for a split second, he would've sworn he saw a breezy mass of grey hair whipping past the woman's shoulders. It was a woman, wasn't it? Even if she wouldn't see it, Sable still flipped her the bird and grumbled: “Crazy coot.




Fortunately, Ebenezer had long ensured that his two armed veterans did not have to pass conventional airport security, and their plane, too, was private, the windows treated to filter out UV rays and thus ensure that the both of them were considerably more comfortable than they would normally have been. It helped that every surface was polished to shine, and enough of their home had seeped into the air transport that Balthazar even had a decent collection of reading material for the journey.

Diseases are far from the worst of it, I’m afraid,” Balthazar mentioned as soon as the aircraft took off. They often spoke in this manner, picking up threads from old conversations that had petered out It was not as though they often forgot things, after all, and if they did, well, it was not such a trying thing to continue anyway. The man with the dusky complexion did not point out that they were immune to diseases, because it was the principle of the thing and not the actual risk. “My understanding is that this is an escort mission, and there are to be… others.

Others?” The less-than-subtle scraggle-hound snorted while he absently shuffled through various magazines and discarded those that didn't interest him in the overhead compartment. Fortunately, Ebenezer understood his limited taste in literature. There were plenty of magazines to his liking. His eyebrows furrowed, dramatically, as his thoughts went rampant. He generally didn't play well with others because they thought he was annoying – more of a bother than an actual companion. Regardless, he'd been making real progress since initially being called by Ebenezer. “As long as there's no gum, no dirty fingernails – can't 'e ever enlist normal help?” He counted each offence off the tips of his fingers, ticking them off and tucking them closed. They couldn't all be bad, right?

This last was perhaps not so unfortunate, but frankly Balthazar was not a ‘people person.’ Polite, yes, and a good candidate for intellectual conversation, but the folk Ebenezer tended to pick up were not usually inclined to appreciate either of these qualities, and he had little else to offer save a steady hand and a repertoire of less-social skills.




The two men arrived at the docks in time for a raucous laugh to be carried towards them on the wind, and Balthazar cringed inwardly, removing his small case from the trunk of the rickety Burmese cab and extending the collapsible handle. He took a deep breath, which registered mostly ocean and slightly too-old fish blood, and shot his companion a sidelong glance. The expression was grim, but for all that his mouth retained a neutral cast. A job was a job, and it would be done, one way or another.

Shall we?

Reluctantly, Sable disembarked from the safety of the vehicle and surveyed the area with a quick sweep of his eyes. Dingy docks chock-full of smelly fish. It seemed like the prime location where Ebenezer would send them all to meet before a mission, right along with abandoned barns that were ready to fall apart with the slightest creaking winds – filled to the nuts with hungry, dribbling vampires. He wished he'd actually listened to Ebenezer's droning mission statements, or payed more attention to the dossiers he occasionally slid them. He nodded solemnly. It came off as a nearly robotic jerk, like a puppet's whose strings were tightly wound. If he'd started walking like his knees had less bones and less connectible muscles: it certainly wouldn't have been surprising. Faint silhouettes indicated an already animated group – probably the ones' they were supposed to meet. It was only when he heard a particularly lecherous voice crooning that his older, much barefaced self crept out of it's hole:

“Hello my little Liebschen, my name is Wolfgang von Krieger. Would you care to play fetch?”

If I threw something in the water, would you jump in, slick?

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi Character Portrait: Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sable Gossamer Valante Character Portrait: Sallie Harris Character Portrait: Annabelle Reed
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The more time passed, the more his mind began to drift. The currents must have been to blame, cascading and crashing rhythmically as a ticking clock or a heartbeat. His thoughts delved into darker depths, around where the fish had antennae that glowed like fireflies. Why do people drive on parkways and park on driveways? he wondered as a vehicle slid into view. And why, pray tell, is it that transporting something by car is called a shipment, whilst items transported by ship is called cargo? Such inexplicable phenomena had never occurred to him before, and he found it distressing. So distressing, in fact, that he didn't note the shadow of a silhouette until the shadow began to consume him.

"D'AH!" he hollered when she neared, jolting in a manner similarly to those blow-up car dealer nylon dolls. "Who are you!" His hands, so resembling roots used in premodern medicine, hovered protectively near his head. When he saw it was merely a woman who proceeded to sit like a tail-wagging dog, he reeled forward, slapping his chest as he exhaled a long held breath. His lips felt sewn up, undulating with every sharp, flaking bit of skin, and still he retained a deep-set uncertainty in his shuddering eyes. They prickled at her presence, likely due to the prevalent smell of smog. He was no stranger to the cigarettes himself, as there were many back in Italy who would lean precariously from their balconies, puffing and spewing swirling masses toward unfortunates who dwelled in the narrow streets below. But before the woman could answer him, another figure appeared on the scene, rendering Micah even more speechless. Why, that... what... That was a pick-up line, wasn't it? How... daring? If not unexpected. Perhaps he succeeded more often with the element of surprise? Micah nodded to himself, mulling over bringing it into play as soon as he mustered up the courage (which would be 'never,' he dimly realized). More gentlemen appeared, the first with darker skin than the former (causing him to cross out the idea of their being brothers), and he grew increasingly anxious. He'd not been aware that he would be traveling with such a large group of people. One of the newcomers--Micah sniffed the air, brows furrowing for a moment--arrived in time to hear the first man's words, and saw fit to respond. Oh, Dio. Conflict. Micah began to panic, hastily glancing left and right to find an escape route lest he be caught in the middle of a brawl.

His savior came in the form of a little old lady, and the skinny Mr. Ames heaved another breath, this time of relief. "Excuse me dear but can you help me?" she had rambled sweetly, "One of my bags is stuck in the backseat of the car and I can't seem to get it out. If only a strong man could help me..."

This, this was familiar. Campania did not receive as many tourists as the bigger cities, but he had his fair share of strangers ambling over, requesting directions with language booklets and travel pamphlets clutched like lifelines, smiling meekly and handing him a fragile photographic device with so many buttons. He supposed being often seen in a uniform did him favors in appearing approachable. He remembered this one time, a young woman and her pessimistically bored boyfriend came up to him just after he'd finished burying a body in a hedge maze. He had to tell them he was the gardener's cousin, helping out... Snuffed out as quickly as it lit up in his mind, Micah pushed the memory aside to tend to the matter at hand. She wished for help with her bags. "Yes." He replied, but in then recognizing her fluent American English, tried to blend in with less awkward vocabulary: "Sure."
He straightened, taking care not to touch or bump into anyone during his retreat, and made for the old woman's car like a terrified water skeeter scuttling across ripples. He'd noticed the black shining barrel of a gun only recently. Was he just coerced into helping an old woman unload her things at gunpoint....? He didn't know what to think of this, not at all. It was easy to tell which vehicle belonged to her--it was the only one untended, and the only one with its trunk flaring open like the enticing legs of a prostitute. Oh... that was a discomforting thought... Carefully gripping the bag and lightly jolting it from side to side, he managed to dislodge the thing (momentarily losing his balance--it was heavier than he'd expected), and closed the trunk behind him for good measure. "Er," he said then, looking meekly at the elderly lady as a means of inquiring where she wished him to put it. She couldn't be one of those people that suddenly expected him to carry her things everywhere for her... right...?

The dismayed thought lingered for a moment, but he'd caught sight of someone else meandering over. Another woman, with thinly braided hair. What were they called... corn fields--no, cornrows. They were longer than any he'd ever seen, hanging over her small shoulders past her ribs, and beaded with something that shined in the light. Seashells? How quaint. Contrary to his expectations, she was blonde, and quite lacking in hints of Southeast Asian descent. She was wearing a cropped denim jacket and slimming pants, which was probably what made her limbs seem so skinny. Yet despite that, there was a bulge protruding from her center. Ah... Pregnant...?

Oh, no no, it was merely some sort of large parcel wrapped in a dark fabric or paper. A rounded thing, perhaps a ball or a pot. She grinned in greeting when she was close enough to see them. "Hi there, mister and granny." She paused to appraise them coming to a halt in front of Micah. There was that funny smell again. "This isn't your mother, is it?" teased the girl, before laughing like a sprightly thing at his expense. Micah couldn't recount a time he was more flustered, and though he blubbered silently, he said nothing comprehensible.

Besides, she was already moving on, balancing the object with one hand at the pit of her stomach, and the other hand waving in a wide arc. "Yooo, guys!" she called. "Ylaine here! That Ebenezer guy told you about me, right?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Constantine Augustus Meyac
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The Constantine Problem




5 Days earlier.



Ring!Ring!
"Who the fuck calls people at fucking ten in the morning?! Don't you have any fucking better thing to fucking do?!"
Silence. It was if the caller was trying to calm themselves down. "Son." Just one word. A familiar voice; calm and deep, like a seasoned badass movie anti-hero. It was Ebenezer.
Silence; as if the receiver had involuntarily shit his pants. "..... How may I--we--I, help you today Abe?"
"Be at the indiscriminate Docks in 5 days... say ten, ten-thirty in the night? Be prepared to spend a little over three days on a ship... I hope you like boats."
"Sure, boss... For my earlier outburst, I would like t-"
CLICK.
Do you want a shotgun?



Near the Indiscriminate Docks. 10:10 pm.



This is fucking stupid. There's nobody here. What a waste of my time. What was that old grouch thinking? What, did he intend to knock unconscious and then ship us? He did say in the dock, not near the docks. Constantine had reached here just a few moments ago. Three days on a boat for work reasons meant only one thing, no good-looking women.

The dock is a mother whose children are ships. She feeds them fuel and crates of food. She helps them when times are bad. When it is raining outside, she will shelter them. She is more like a whore with unwanted children and a tendency to smuggle in illegal little human whores.

The wind howled with a ferocity that would make a wolf cower in the corner and cover his ears. He did wear a coat, brown and over-sized, but still it felt like how dead bodies and dying men must have felt in the deep freezer. A few minutes later, the wind slowed down and when a husky voice shouted, "Gette fick outta mecaar," Constantine reluctantly got out.

"Me moneh, fuckerr!" shouted the man. Constantine got to the back and opened the trunk. A large bag exploded onto Constantine's arms, clearly stuffed in the trunk with all the might the cab driver possessed. "Me moneh, muddercunder!" shouted the man stepping out of the front seat. Constantine sighed. He hated these kind of men; men who would never stop being bad and abusive, much like the bastard demons or the bastard werewolves.

He removed a stick of bills, about two thousand dollars. It was given to him by one of Abe's men some time ago. Either, a gift for a work well done, or, more likely, a "stay the hell away from us for a while" present. But before he could remove a hundred dollar bill to give the man, he felt cold metal on the back of his head. Greedy human...


"Oll! I want oll!" the man wanted to shout but it was only a whimper. The last thing the man'd want to do would be to alert everyone in the vicinity that he was robbing a man.

Just give him the fucking money. We need to go on a boat and we don't fucking need any money. Unless there is a casino... Constantine turned around looked at the man. The man looked like he was in his late forties but then again, with the crappy job and most likely ten children and a nagging wife that he had to feed, he could be twenty. He had a scar that ran from his chin to the edge of the blue turtleneck he wore.

He didn't have slits for eyes, as most people imagined anyone east of India did. He wore a half-torn pant and sandals. Constantine had read in the newspaper how all Asian were corrupt bastards wanting to steal the freedom and humanity and pride and what not of the Americans. Perhaps, if these people were more like what the bloody newspapers said they'd be, he'd have more fun here...

For a moment he imagined what the life of such a man would be. A crappy apartment in Crappiville, a wife who he forces to stay in the kitchen and then shout at for being such a money wasting bitch. Ten little fuckers, born out of the sexual needs of a poor fucker fucking a poor woman shunned by her family for not being a man, screaming and running around the house and then wondering why their father hates and hits them. Constantine wondered if he could get the man to commit suicide. That'd increase his repertoire in the demon world...

This man would not shoot; not today, not in a million years. If he had any intentions, he would have hit the gun at the back of Constantine's head a long time ago. He was a scared little opportunist, and a bad one at that. One who didn't know who he stood before. And worse, one who didn't know that his gun's safety lock was still on. Greedy and stupid. How much am I reminded of politicians and army generals. Like people, like representatives, I guess.

Constantine wasn't making a move and it looked like the man had frozen, unsure of what to do next. Most people would have given the money. But then again most people didn't carry AK-47s in their bag and didn't kill for money; most people's lives were boring and dull.

The cold was coming back, this time like someone was stabbing Constantine with an ice pick, made of ice. "Don't we all want more money?" A small smile developed. The man started sweating, an amazing feat of pure insecurity. Constantine's next statement came merely after a second of pausing, yet it seemed like an eternity had passed. Was it tension, or as Einstein put it, boredom?

"Here is a hundred dollars. Take either that or a right hook." The man waited too long to answer and Constantine swung his arm. Instinctively, the man dropped his gun to save his face (no pun intended), proving that the man had no idea how to use a gun, or to take a stand. The arm swiped across the air. One could describe it as a train rushing at a soon-to-be-dead man at top speed, or a cheetah nearing a prey, who didn't know that its end is nigh. The man's hands were too weak to gain enough acceleration. They did not reach his face in time and the train crashed into his face.

Time may have stood still, but the man did not. In an instant, he leaped to the ground, unable to open his mouth to even wail. "Have that, you little fuck!"Constantine pushed a hundred dollar bill into the man's pocket and spoke slowly, "Be good and don't complain." It wasn't like the man wouldn't spend the money on prostitutes and booze, but at least he helped the pimps get some money.

Constantine turned towards the road near which the man had parked his car. They were a few hundred feet from where they had to be. Constantine strung the bag over his shoulders. It was large, reaching his tailbone and wider than Constantine himself. He looked like those tea pickers of old, who carried a big basket who thrown the leaves in; except in the case of the tea pickers, their baskets did not weigh a million billion tons. Damn AK-47 and damn AK-47 ammo. Why can't someone else bring this stuff and inform Constantine so he wouldn't have to trudge an elephant who wants a piggy back ride.

But now that he thought about it, he didn't know who the others were. All he hoped that there weren't any irritating demons or werewolves around. That would just ruin everything. They weren't going on a fun boat ride, but it was somewhat of a vacation, however droll it would turn out. Constantine was lost in his thought when he took a step forward towards...

As he half-jumped backwards and tripped over the still-on-the-ground-ex-assailant, words shot out of his mouth, "Fucking watch where you are driving! So fucking nearly killed me!"

It was little blue Ford Sedan had nearly gained a hundred points for running down pedestrian like in that newfangled game the orphans play in the church-run orphanage, on the only computer there. Constantine had bought for himself, so that he could learn and understand the machine, which was touted to be the future. Two days later, donated.

A few more seconds passed. The other man on the scene didn't bother to move. He could move, Constantine knew that. Constantine's right hook wasn't that potent. The guy's gun lay near Constantine... So nearly he had forgotten about it and turned his back towards the man. Just because he didn't have courage when he was face-to-face didn't mean he wouldn't shoot in the back. It didn't matter though. Constantine's hand moved skillfully through the air, like a stereotypical always-knitting grandma's, and seconds later, the magazine out of the gun and in his pocket.

He stood up, brushed off the dirt, picked up his bag and started moving. Five minutes later, he was at the docks.



A minute of walking in and out of the lights of the badly lit dock, and Constantine reached a bunch of people. They were so very out of place, much like Constantine. They looked like fans in a Metallica concert after Metallica went rock and global. They looked like bunch of travelers, travelling to an exotic place; a group of tourists who pooled in their money and then realized Myanmar was more anti-outsiders than the Soviet Union. If they had been dogs, they would look like participants of an international Dog show. If they were parrots, then Constantine might as well be a budgerigar. Of course, all this imagery failed when Constantine envisioned the old lady to be a part of the group. Surely not...

He walked up to them when the skinny Macaw chirped. "
"Yooo, guys! Ylaine here! That Ebenezer guy told you about me, right?"

Definitely a macaw...

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi Character Portrait: Wolfgan Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sable Gossamer Valante Character Portrait: Sallie Harris Character Portrait: Annabelle Reed Character Portrait: Constantine Augustus Meyac
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“If I threw something in the water, would you jump in, slick?”

Sallie's only regret about the present turn of events was that she hadn't gotten to make the statement herself—it was clever, and sounded like the sort of thing she might have come up with if she hadn't been so busy staring in reproachful confusion at the man who'd approached her. She'd never particularly been one to waste words on a disrespectful stranger, but now that she was going to be forced to work with this one, she wondered if this was perhaps a less than ideal course of action. Sallie rested her hand protectively on the gun at her hip, sincerely hopeful that she wouldn't have to use it this early in the game. With any luck, however, this newcomer would distract the would-be Casanova.

"You'd better take your business elsewhere, pal, or the stick you'll be fetching from God-knows-where will be your own," she thought to herself, but at the moment the urge to have the attention directed anywhere but herself overwhelmed her urge to be smug (which was a rare enough occurrence in and of itself), so she kept her mouth shut.

The newcomers were an interesting pair to say the least, both well-dressed and well-groomed. Dandies, Sallie wagered, though whether she meant in the innocuous traditional sense or the more accusatory modern presumption, she wasn't sure. Not that she was one to judge. The little one was only marginally taller than herself, and in total mass, might have been smaller (at least if Sallie wasn't taking a reality check on her own slight frame).

Conflict among their ill-matched group seemed inevitable, but she supposed someone had to step in to play the role of peacekeeper. Or at least handy distraction. She clutched the case awkwardly to her stomach and pulled herself up using one of the crates. "No need to get testy, boys. I have a feeling we're going to be seeing a lot of each other in the coming weeks. Sallie Harris, former FBI. This charming gentleman," the sarcasm in her voice was heavy, "has already introduced himself, but we could start the round all over again if you'd like."

The man (who had turned out not to be a statue at all, though she was surprised to find that out) she'd sat down beneath had taken his leave of matters, which she supposed she envied him for; if it weren't for the case in her arms, Sallie might have offered to help the little old woman herself. Now she had to interact with these upstanding gentlemen (and Wolfgang, but she supposed he was an "upstanding" gentleman of a different sort, as long as the term "gentleman" was used sarcastically), and she hadn't had a smoke in over an hour.

Fumbling with her pocket, Sallie produced a lighter and an open pack of Marlboro red. "You boys mind if I smoke?" The cigarette was already drooping from the corner of her mouth as she spoke; it was more a warning than a courtesy, and if the gentlemen in question minded, well—there was a perfectly good body of water they could douse themselves in, she supposed. Right behind them, even.

Before she had a chance to light up, yet another new voice was added the conversation, this one calling out over the already-abandoned docks. "Yooo, guys! Ylaine here! That Ebenezer guy told you about me, right?" Sallie squinted in the direction of this new addition, a small woman who reminded her of the sorts of young women she went to college with, sans the slouching hat. Assuming Dorian Gray over there was joining their party as well, the rag-tag bunch appeared to be quite the crowd.

The realization that she would be spending a considerable amount of time in close quarters with this bunch didn't bring Sallie much joy. She lit the cigarette in her mouth and took a long, calming drag, replacing the lighter as she did so. She was even polite enough to aim away from the faces of the men surrounding her—one of them in particular might have taken the gesture as undue flirtation, and that was the last thing she wanted to encourage before what already promised to be a long and uncomfortable boat ride. "Ylaine," she said thoughtfully, giving a wave with her cigarette in hand. The tip brightened and flaked along with the gesture. "Name sounds familiar, but I'm drawing a blank."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi Character Portrait: Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sable Gossamer Valante Character Portrait: Sallie Harris Character Portrait: Annabelle Reed Character Portrait: Constantine Augustus Meyac
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#, as written by Ezarael
Wolfgang „Wolf“ von Krieger


“If I threw something in the water, would you jump in, slick?”

Why did this sort of thing always occur when he was preoccupied with a woman? For some reason he was never able to pay attention to whatever else was going on around him if women were involved. In all actuality it would have been better had he not take his focus off of his intended target, but as they say, "The best laid plans of mice and men.” The woman seemed like a cold-fish anyway, so there probably wasn’t much ground lost to be honest.

The werewolf almost wished he had kept focused on anything else though, because as soon as he let the outside world back into his realm of attention his superior senses were assailed by a cacophony of sensations. The acrid smell of burning rubber, brake fluid, and dead flesh slammed into his nostrils like a brick whilst squealing brakes, chattering women, and obscenities from none too far off battered his ear drums. An old woman with a strange accent was inquiring for some assistance from the dangerous-smelling man, just another reason Wolfgang never wanted to live to a ripe old age, if he couldn’t take care of himself it was time to go.

There was too much to respond to, but first things first. The flowery one with the comments was first up on the list. He reeked of death as the rail-thin woman from earlier, which was simply awful. The German uneasily lifted himself from his seated position, using his right hand to lean against the crate for a few moments until he could regain his composure amidst the overpower stench in the air. The other man smelled of death as well, just great this was going to be an awful boat trip, he would definitely need to pay attention to which way the wind blew whilst on the ocean, and of course he was going to Captain the ship and whatever Abe said be damned.

After settling his knees enough to walk again Wolfgang waltzed his not so merry self towards the one who spoke up, pale and short like all but the one with the dark complexion. When he came within two feet of the tiny man he laid his left hand gingerly upon the other’s shoulder and bent forward to speak in his ear, not much of an easy feat given the putrid stench emanating from him. He spoke very quietly, barely louder than a whisper, he imagined this one might have extraordinary hearing such as his self and if the others did he did not necessarily want to start any trouble right off the bat. He did need to work with these people after all. “There’s a pair of large balls in my pants if you care to find out friend, otherwise let us keep the wise-cracking to a minimum, ja?”

With a hearty laugh and slap on the shoulder Wolfgang straightened himself and gazed upon the others gathering around so far. A strange bunch to be certain, and it seemed the rail-thin woman had something to say, or at least she looked like she did what with the standing up and what have you with a “keep the peace” kind of look plastered on her face. If only she knew he detested violence then she might not have wasted the precious air reminding them of the fact. "No need to get testy, boys. I have a feeling we're going to be seeing a lot of each other in the coming weeks. Sallie Harris, former FBI. This charming gentleman," the sarcasm in her voice was heavy, "has already introduced himself, but we could start the round all over again if you'd like.”

“Ah, why ja definitely. How could I have forgotten my manners at a time like this? Wilkommen gentlemen! My name is Wolfgang von Krieger, and it is a pleasure to make your acquaintance!”

Before he could even being his splendid self-introduction the toxic smell of a cigarette assaulted his delicate nose quickly after the FBI woman asked them quickly, "You boys mind if I smoke?" Wolfgang coughed lightly to clear his throat as the smoke coated his lungs without permission, sure she didn’t blow it straight at his face but that hardly mattered when you were dealing with senses as acute as his own. Two new figures caught his attention though, one in a good way and the other in a bad way.

"Yooo, guys! Ylaine here! That Ebenezer guy told you about me, right?"

Now THIS was right up his alley of expertise, or however the Americans put it. She was small, in all the right ways, blonde, and fairly attractive, plus she didn’t smell of death like three others he need not mention, which was definitely a plus in his book right now. The other man though, he seemed like a pretty boy and cocky as well, probably the man who was swearing earlier, he would definitely need to divert this Ylaine’s attention from this man’s general proximity. Not that he was competition or any nonsense like that, no one was competition for Wolfgang’s stunning combination of beauty and brains, but it was always a good idea to hedge your bets.

“Ylaine you said? What a beautiful name you have Liebschen!” As he started with his moves Wolfgang quickly walked up next to the pretty young Ylaine and draped his right arm around her shoulders, holding his left hand out towards the package grasped in her arms. “Are you in need of any assistance my dear? Ach mein Gott, I am so sorry, but proper etiquette slipped my mind after seeing you. My name is Wolfgang my dear, and I am both ashamed for Ebenezer and insulted by the fact he told me nothing of your coming here!”

While continuing on with his small speech, or whatever you might call it, the werewolf began slowing urging the woman away from the pretty boy newcomer and closer to the docks. “So my dear what are we gathered here for? I am eager to start with my first assignment, when do we leave?”

Looking back at the others in their motley crew Wolfgang put an earnest and somewhat stern look upon his face before speaking. “So are we ready, ja? Is this everyone or is it time to go? I’ll be piloting the boat, ja, so you should hurry before both Ylaine and I leave you behind!”

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi Character Portrait: Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sable Gossamer Valante Character Portrait: Sallie Harris Character Portrait: Annabelle Reed Character Portrait: Constantine Augustus Meyac
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Sable saw fit to open their acquaintance with this group by leveling a quip at the… werewolf. Yes, that certainly had to be what he was, if the large frame and scent of wet dog that lingered about his rather comparatively disheveled self were anything to go by. Of course, the last werewolf he’d met had informed him in no uncertain terms that while he was the cleanest vampire she’d ever met, he still smelled worse than that. Having grown up with it himself, he was bound to disagree.

He noted but did not specifically acknowledge the human man and the older lady he went to help, though he swore there was something just a touch familiar about that vehicle, which was of course impossible, since he had never in all of his extensive travel been to Myanmar before.

All was put from his mind anyway when the werewolf, who’d predictably taken machismo-laden offense to Sable’s commentary, placed a hand on his flatmate’s shoulder and loomed over him, his retort crude as Balthazar would have guessed, had anyone asked him to hazard an opinion. The annoyed hiss that escaped the Persian man’s teeth was barely-audible to human senses, but of course humans were a minority here, weren’t they? One side of his upper lip lifted, an almost involuntary sneer that flashed a pearlescent fang.

How entirely reprehensible, to use your size and physique to intimidate when you had been challenged on another level entirely. Perhaps his mind was inadequate to the task, but this in itself was no excuse.

Perhaps fortunately, the situation was dissolved a good deal more civilly with the intervention of the group’s third vampire, and Balthazar relaxed, smoothing his face out again before his display, subtle as it was when compared to the main event, became too obvious. He was not an emotive man as a rule, but certainly, those he kept closer than arms’ length, while few in number, were his most obvious triggers. He made it a point to give the woman a courteous half-bow. “FBI?” he repeated with some faint trace of amusement nearly imperceptible beneath his usual accented lilt. “I do some work with Interpol, myself. Balthazar Shirazi, at your service.”

This last was directed at the group, which by now seemed to contain all of its members, including three humans (though the more youthful of the two males seemed a tad…off somehow, but Balthazar was no expert in humanity, so he might well have been imagining it), the werewolf, and the three vampires. Interesting; he’d almost been expecting a witch or two, but then perhaps one of them was. No herb smells, though, but… a faint hint of metal? From the elderly woman, no less. If he was surprised by this, Balthazar chose not to show it.

He certainly did not mind the scent of cigarettes, as his father had been quite fond of Cuban cigars for much of Balthazar’s life, and those were considerably worse than their slimmer cousins. He noted Wolfgang (ah, but the irony of such an appellation- was it his birth one?) seemed uncomfortable, and supposed that was the trade-off for a nose better even than a vampire’s.

By the time that anyone else who wanted to make introductions had done so, there was a shout from not too far off, and Balthazar turned to see a young female approaching. This, already predictably, set the German hound to baying like a fool puppy, and he introduced himself for what must have been the third time.

Charming.

His hastiness was even more problematic. “Only a fool runs headlong into a situation without understanding it,” Balthazar cut in with cool tones. “Miss Ylaine, Ebenezer was rather sparing with the details of our task. All we were told is that we were to escort someone or something somewhere, and that doing so involved travelling by boat. If there is any other information you would be willing to part with before we begin, I’m sure it would be most helpful.” He might have mentioned that Ebenezer hadn’t even mentioned her, but every species he'd ever encountered were alike enough in their desire to be important that he supposed this notion might be mildly offensive, so he tactfully omitted it.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi Character Portrait: Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sable Gossamer Valante Character Portrait: Sallie Harris Character Portrait: Annabelle Reed Character Portrait: Constantine Augustus Meyac
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It's the little things that always counted. The irrelevant quips that sloughed from his flapping tongue before his fangs could rattle them to a close, and so Sable's mouth twitched into a slight smirk before trembling back into it's usual frown – clearly worried that this hulking menace would grab him by the throat and throttle him like a restless turkey, ringing his neck until he plopped across his feet like a broken marionette. He wasn't going to end up one of the man's dirty barbie dolls, if that was what he was thinking. It was never the big things that threw him off – always and only the little ones. The collar of his leather coat was pulled up to hug his slender neck and chin, and the dark circles under his eyes only revealed a fraction of how exhausted he actually was after such a long day. One his innards aren't panicky and his heart isn't thumping hollowly in his chest and spurred about so restlessly. His pulse ran sluggishly, as always.

Certainly, this werewolf was going to chase off all the women or earn himself a sharpened heel straight into his pelvic area, crushing all the important bits – if he pushed enough, if he spat enough slime at them like a tweed-suit wearing creep in A Night at the Roxbury. It wasn't difficult to picture him thrusting his hips, arms flailing fruitlessly as he crunched himself against several other bodies in an attempt to rid himself of whatever rapid hormones that ailed him. Thankfully, there weren't any appalling stenches that assailed his nose. It might've been because he, himself, smelled like death. The awkwardly soft smells of an open coffin or a room belonging solely to cleaned cadavers: grey flesh, dying molecules and a smattering of flavoured hand sanitizer. These were the scents that made up Sable's caricature: a dying fruit bowl, albeit without any swarms of fruit flies.

The muscles in Sable's arms immediately tensed, sending tendrils of dismay through his shoulder blades and biceps. It felt like pebbles had crept under his skin, pushing uncomfortably against his flesh and making them, quite, impossible to move. The larger German's fingers twitched, then he was suddenly moving away from the amalgamation of crates surrounding the woman he'd been smoothly attempting to accost. His eyes widened, quickly, then narrowed into sharp corners and angles. Had he ever had any altercations with the other group? Surely not. They'd treated him little more than a silly pup who hadn't learned his place but now – this creature, this mass of muscles, was stomping towards him as if he'd pulled his earlobes between pinched fingers. There wasn't anywhere to retreat to unless he wasn't to back in the ocean and plummet to it's depths, drowning in it's noticeably murky waters. It certainly looked dirty from where he was standing. The man's hand clamped down on his shoulder. He swore that if he'd wanted to crush his collarbone, he could've. It was in the subtle tension of the man's probing fingers, so gingerly, so softly depicting what could possibly happen.

Inadvertently leaning backwards, trying to disentangle the man's fingers from his person, Sable's mouth curled distastefully from the threatening whisper. “N-No need to get your panties in a bunch, I don't play fetch.” He threw his hands up, finally, defeated. He didn't want his head bashed in before the mission was complete – or really, at all. The vampire's composure shifted. It wasn't quite like a dog's whipping tail tucking between his legs, pressed against his abdomen, but it sure was close. This guy was the embodiment of flexing, muscle-pumping body builders. He could snap him like a twig if he so wished to, but more or less, Ebenezer would take the proper precautions, wouldn't he? He wouldn't let his only loving nephew be fed to the sharks, would he? “Wise-cracking. Minimum, got it.” His fingers, like thin harp strings, wiggled in front of his face as if he were making a solemn promise.

He'd already decided that Wolfgang was frightening even if he wasn't tearing his limbs into a mess of beef jerky. Sable laughed awkwardly when the werewolf slapped him across the shoulder, carrying himself as if nothing had truly occurred. “We will – be living side by side, that is.” Wolfgang von Krieger? If Ebenezer hadn't strictly told them that a werewolf was involved, then he wouldn't have noticed the faint smell of wet dog wafting from the man before him. He wasn't very perceptive to smells unless he was pressing his face into said article, which did not seem like a promising thing to do given Wolfgang's alternating moods. He took note of those who'd already introduced themselves and shuffled the names away with conventional, insatiably silly, words so that he'd remember them later. Nicknames were useful enough, so long as no one was testy enough to correct him. Sallie was all cigarettes and lipstick stains and something else that reminded him solely of business and piles of work sheets haphazardly strewn across the floor. Wolfgang – as he'd described before – reminded him of a large shaggy hound who'd mistakenly eaten steroids for the majority of his life. The older woman, who he'd been squinting at moments before, reminded him of that crazy coot who nearly drove them off the road. He didn't have experience for older lasses. He didn't have any dotting nannies cooking him blood cookies as a youngster, nor was he allowed to speak to any of his older ancestors unless he was spoken to: which, was clearly, not very often. The oddly grinning fellow had already bumbled forward with his offer to take the older woman's luggage, shuffling uncomfortably, while regarding the nannie's flashing gun barrel.

Another man entered the unusual scene, dressed purposefully well. If it hadn't been for the fact that this man had been invited by Ebenezer himself, then Sable would've guessed that he was a wayward model who'd lost his way and stumbled onto them, coincidentally. There was something off about him. He discarded his neurotic thoughts and shrugged his shoulders, offering a slight nod that seemed jerky, mechanical. He was still rattled. His plexiglass eye itched, so he knuckled it thoughtfully, glancing upwards until he caught sight, from the corner of his functional eye, of another woman who looked as if she'd missed the bus headed for a roller rink. Her optimism spilled over the brim of her cup. Sable couldn't help but flash a smile, waving a little more chipperly. Ebenezer hadn't mentioned who'd be guiding them, but he'd slipped out that, this time, it was a woman. She looked as if she sang off tune and didn't particularly care what she sounded like – it put him at ease. Optimism, optimism, optimism. Balthazar and Sable had little use of such things.

He shrugged, nonchalantly, when Sallie asked if anyone cared whether or not she smoked. Inevitably, even if anyone had any qualms, Sable doubted that she'd stub it out and respect their wishes. He didn't care either way. His lungs were feverish with poison and rot – what would a little tar and chemicals do to them? Absolutely nothing. After Balthazar had introduced himself with a quick, courteous bow, then Sable bobbed his head forward and added: “Sable Valante, or Mink.” Clearly, if anyone knew the mysterious phone-caller's last name, they'd know he was related to Ebenezer. Sadly, this fact never worked in his advantage. He was never treated any differently, anyway. His eyebrows flashed up, then sidled down when Wolfgang's eagerness to introduce himself to another woman, equipped with bouncing breasts, introduced herself. Honestly. Were all werewolves like this? Perhaps, there were reasons why Ebenezer hadn't told Wolfgang that there'd be women involved. He opened his mouth, thought better of it, and promptly clinched it closed.

When hadn't Ebenezer left out all of the important details, allowing them to stumble forward and figure out things for themselves even if it meant attempting to scale rooftops and smashing your face, unpleasantly, against rotten shingles. Junctures of skin and bones and tepid memories. It was enough to say that ridicule did not spill from his pores, anymore. His attention turned back towards Balthazar – the one who'd always known just what to say, just how to press the wrinkles out of their conjunctive missions. There was nothing to add, so Sable merely slipped his hands into his pockets and waited for a better explanation.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi Character Portrait: Wolfgang “Wolf” von Krieger Character Portrait: Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sable Gossamer Valante Character Portrait: Sallie Harris Character Portrait: Annabelle Reed Character Portrait: Constantine Augustus Meyac
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#, as written by Deallo
The gentlemen had an accent, one that Annabelle couldn't quite place, but agreed to help her out none the less. She mentally remarked how fast the foreigner ran to her car; like someone lit his bottom on fire. It was suspicious, even more since there was a hint of...fear? Was it fear in his steps? Or hesitation? The old lady took a deep breath, reminding herself to be mindful of her surroundings.

On that note, she finally noticed the commotion that was occurring beside her and finally understood what he was running away from. He was just like my daughter Mary, never liked confrontation, running with her tail between her legs at the first sight of it. Of course, Annabelle knew it wasn't kind to compare a fully grown man to her daughter when she was sixteen. The fight that was brewing seemed to be an almost stereotypical challenge the old lady saw too much of back in Texas. Two men fighting over a girl. The idea was something only men can think of: if a guy beats up a lady's boyfriend, she'll leave him, and go to the man who's stupid enough to throw punches in the first place.

The really stupid girls are the ones who actually go along with it.

It brought her back thirty-five years ago sitting in a bar, sipping on some beer, when two gentlemen she didn't know tried to court her. Neither had the eye to see the ring of a married woman placed ever so precariously on her left hand.

One of them was a tall, strong fellow, who dressed like he was going on vacation, wearing a ridiculous captain's hat. He reminded her of her son Ronnie, the running-back for the Houston Texans, and she was going to assume he was just as dumb until he started to laugh the situation off. Annabelle managed to crack a smile; surprised he saw a man who's muscles didn't crush his brain. The other two men had an air of professionalism about them, one who was as white as the ghost and had been the one issuing the challenge while the other one, which Annabelle was quick enough to assume, was Indian. Both of them were rather scrawny at first sight. It was rather odd how they came out of the same car, and both dressed alike in suits. For a moment, the old lady could have sworn she saw the white one of the two before...but she couldn't place her finger on it. Her mind was a bit busy trying to decipher the relationship between those two...were they..? Naaah.

Tossing aside the ridiculous notion, the gentlemen with her bag cam back, and just as she was going to think him, the final stranger appeared. A young looking lady who had her hair all bunched up like some of the black woman she saw in New York when she went on a "business" trip. On the other hand, she looked like one of the free-spirited hippies who'd protest in the front of the white house with those seashells stuck to her head. "Ylaine" her name was; an awkward name to say if Annabelle dared to read it from a list. Still, it was nice to see an enthusiastic face in here. The rest of the group started to introduce themselves, making it easier for Annabelle to distinguish people rather then using "he" "she" or possibly "the brown one". Everyone had relatively simple names, slightly relieved the Indian one had a name that was easy to say, arching an eyebrow at Wolfgang's too enthusiastic behavior.

She perked up as the small woman introduced herself as Sallie Harris; freaking FBI. Sallie...Sallie...

The name was too familiar. Annabelle knew she heard it before but where? Working with the cartel? FBI were a problem in her line of work but was it somewhere else? It only took a moment to realize she wasn't breathing; somehow forgetting to exhale. Former FBI. Former FBI she kept thinking to herself, steadily taking breaths. There was also another character, one who hadn't introduced himself yet, just looking at everyone. It was safe to say he was letting out creepy vibes. Annabelle turned to her attention to Ylaine; for her turn to introduce herself.

"Oh, it so nice to meet you dear. Ebenezer told me all about you-" He hadn't. "-oh, how rude of me, name's Annabelle, darling. I own a gun shop called 'The Silver Bullet' back in Texas." The old lady said cheerfully, omitting her illegal occupation and last name. Trust was something that needed to be earned; not given after all. Amongst all of the introductions, Annabelle completely forgot about the awkward gentlemen who went to grab her bags, leaving him holding about 30 lbs of metal.

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Character Portrait: Constantine Augustus Meyac
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THE CONSTANTINE PROBLEM


Silence. Silence. Silence. Outside, the cold wind was sliced by voices but inside? Silence.

What are you waiting for?... Come on! Say something… Oh, a werewolf…

The werewolf strutted about in the middle of the crowd. A werewolf… Ezekiel flushed with anger, his hand reaching in his pocket for the dog whistle. The dog whistle’s vibrations were supersonic; a human could not hear it, but a werewolf? Oh, they would feel the thunder. To their supersensitive ears, the dog whistle’s whistle felt like someone was using a jackhammer on their ears. The ultimate weapon, along with the pepper spray.

You are scared of him, aren’t you? Poor Ezekiel, scared of little puppy…
You’re yammering does never end, does it? Also, I remember you getting your ass kicked by a werewolf-
Hey! Will you stop rummaging through my memory, you freako!
And how exactly are you going to stop me? Do tell me. But before you do that, think for a few minutes. An hour will also work.

There were others here as well. An older man was near the edge of the group helping an old lady carry a large suitcase, much like what Ezekiel was carrying. Looking at the man carry the bag it looked like he shouldered humanity’s weight on his shoulders. What in the world did an old, possibly senile, woman need to carry… But more importantly, what in the world was this old woman doing in the dock? No… could she be travelling with me? What is Ebenezer thinking? It’s not like he’s giving us a cruise…

What is that old fart doing here? She’ll get killed.
And that affects you?
…True…

Except the chirping macaque, another woman graced the group with her presence; graced, until smoke spewed out of her lungs. Never one to care what habits his compatriots got them themselves, Ezekiel ignored what she said; till the words ‘F’, ‘B’, and ‘I’ ran out of her mouth in an order Ezekiel had never liked; FBI. If man like Ebenezer was now able to employ the services of an ex-FBI, Ezekiel deduced one thing; the FBI stopped following their ex-agents. When did they stop doing that? Well, makes my job easier.

She’s quite the looker…

Two other men stood together. One of them felt necessary to metaphorically burn the werewolf. Ezekiel wished to do the same to the werewolf, but literally. The other was nearly as clean as Constantine. He never did get why Ramirez wanted to be so squeaky clean. Ramirez’s obsessions were getting out of hand. The end of the world would be nigh if Ramirez would get addicted to killing. He wondered if Ramirez had already been addicted to killing. No, he wasn’t disinterested in killing so that was unlikely. Never imagined Ramirez would be a mystery.

The werewolf latched on to the macaque like a parasite to its victim, or like a vampire to its. Rage still ran amok in his mind. He really wanted to kill the hound. But before he did step forward to finish off the pest, he remembered the effect killing allies had on his pay and decided to, regretfully, handed over control to Ramirez.

Liberation! Man Ezekiel, I’m starting to love the werewolf already. Man, I hope he travels with us more often. I had fucking forgotten how much fun controlling someone’s body was. I feel like flying! Ramirez dropped the heavy bag on the floor and stretched a little. Every joint cracked in joyous celebration. He turned his attention from the brown man to the ex-FBI. mm hmm. Nananna, this will be fun. Fun, fun. Three days on a boat. Only me and you, mon amour. Oh yes, fun.

Unfortunately, the moment he took a step, two things happened. One, the werewolf pushed the macaque-esque woman towards the water. And two, Constantine’s hands moved and strung the bag across his chest. Noooo, give me back the bloody control! Come on, I was going to make a move on the beauty here. What the fuck are you fucking doing?! Hey, stop going away from the woman! The macaque is taken. Stop following the bloody werewolf, he doesn’t even know where he’s going! Come on!


No amount on anger management would help Ezekiel deal with his hatred of werewolves and there was no point in giving control over to Ramirez. In any case, Ramirez would have spouted a god awful pick up line, destroying any chances between him and the agent. Ezekiel realized that the faster things would get along the faster they would end (using some hopeful leap of faith logic) and the faster he could get away from the big hound.

But of course, things never went his way. The brown man decided to babble away, asking a futile question. Ezekiel counted to ten before continuing on his merry way. The woman with the werewolf could tell the details en route. Did the man really need some rousing speech? A briefing, perhaps? Also, it wasn’t like the moment they got on the boat, a firefight would greet them. Three days on a boat, Ebenezer, said; not thirty seconds. But most importantly, since when did Constantine work with others?

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She'd been tapping her finger against air particles, ticking off faces and numbers, when she was assaulted with an arm around the shoulders. With quaint expertise, she swiveled and slid out of his grasp like sand through the gullet of an hourglass. "Whoaaa there, lover boy," she remarked, smirking wryly (though she gave him a couple of curt pats on the wrist and then splaying out her fingers in a sort of nonchalant jiggle to indicate a lack of hard feelings). "No touchy Grandma Potts, a'ight? I hear it took years to get ahold of her--Abe'll kill ya, yeah?"

She chuckled to herself, without mirth. Her features retained dimples through each introduction and version of how much info the old man granted them--it was easy to tell her smile was increasingly strained. Ylaine always figured this job would be a bother, but that stupid bald brother of hers... "Ebenezer needs a favor," he says. "It'll be fun," he says. And apparently it was a huge job, but the coot didn't think it important enough to talk to her directly. Bull. Shit. She hissed her weariness through her teeth, shoulders sloping as she held the parcel with both hands again. "H'okay. In short, here's the deal. It's an escort mission, right? Here's the escortee." She lifted the object a tad, flashing a semi-sarcastic smile akin to that of a poster girl (poorly) advertising some weight loss drink. "Make sure nothing happens to her on the trip, yada yada, and we're golden."

She also flashed a thumbs up then for, perhaps, reassurance.




His kneecaps were itching, shivering. He was barely able to pay attention to the escort girl's synopsis--instead darting from head to head, name to name. Wolfgang, appropriately named, was their brutish muscle. Not quite to the point of being a bully, no; as a man who appreciated silence, Micah practically knew bullies by scent from sheer experience. Two appeared exceptionally professional, which was a quality he rather admired: Interpol and former FBI, Balthazar and Sallie (ah... the woman who scared him earlier). Surely they lacked the anxiety he held so dear to his heart. Then there was Sable--Mink?--who arrived with Balthazar, yet seemed so different. His nervous, inexperienced disposition, though significantly less socially stunted, was perhaps closest to his own. As such, Micah almost felt a sort of affinity with the boy. The last arrival was also similar in disposition to himself, though in an entirely different manner. Could it be that the man spoke even less than Micah himself did...? He had to admit he was impressed, and maybe afraid.

There were simply so many people, so many days looming over him, whispering and licking into his ear the knowledge that he wasn't escaping from this impending... job. And during this job, he might be stuck as a gofer. "M, Madame..." he finally managed to whimper to the kindly old woman. Micah hadn't the faintest how she would be able to lug this bag around on of her own accord--it was giving him trouble, clearly.

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Character Portrait: Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi Character Portrait: Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger
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#, as written by Ezarael
Wolfgang „Wolf“ von Krieger


Ylaine had deftly escaped Wolfgang’s grasp, seeming both mildly amused and very uninterested at the same time while maintaining a semblance of no hard feelings. What is with these women? The werewolf mused calmly to himself. No matter, there’s never been a hunt I haven’t enjoyed yet. He was displeased with the current turn of events, but there wasn’t much he could do about things but go along with whatever they were supposed to do, and it would take that much longer if they didn’t hurry up.

The man with the dark complexion, he had heard him state his name as Balthazar, who had arrived in tandem with the small man who had decided to introduce his presence with a wise-crack remark had decided to slight him as did his companion. Are vampires always this rude? Maybe their bad smell is supposed to be an indicator of their bad manners. His musings would make sense, if the world made sense that is to say. However the world rarely made sense so all he could do was make the best of his current situation.

There everyone was again, just standing around twiddling their thumbs and wondering what was going on. Didn’t they know that walking and talking were two activities they could easily accomplish at the same time? This is what happens when you deal with non-Germans, they simply have no clue as to what the word productivity means. “The only true fool is the man who cannot walk and talk. The longer you stand around asking questions which could wait for the boat ride or even the WALK to the boat is that much longer it will take us to finish the job. If you don’t trust your employer then find a new one ja?”

With that left between them Wolfgang continued his trek towards the docks, which boat he would be piloting was a mystery thus far so there was no point in walking much farther. His exceptional hearing allowed him to catch all of their conversation as he finally stopped around ten paces from the others, probably the halfway point between the party and the water. He turned around quickly with his bag, held lightly in his left hand, thrown haphazardly across his left shoulder, the zipper had come undone somewhat and the rather explicit image of a woman splayed across one of his magazines showed through loud and clear with the positioning of the moon.

A large grin once again spread across Wolfgang’s face as he gazed over the motley crew he had been coerced into working with whilst under the employ of Abe. He was disgusted, aggravated, aroused, and somehow amused all at the same time. It was a strange amalgamation to say the least. “Please, forgive my ill-manners. I tend to become a little over-enthusiastic when it comes to work. I’m not a man to waste time is all.”

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Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Balthazar Eskandar Shirazi Character Portrait: Wolfgan Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sable Gossamer Valante Character Portrait: Sallie Harris Character Portrait: Annabelle Reed Character Portrait: Constantine Augustus Meyac
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The notion of the large man in front of them having any semblance of manners might have, in another setting, caused Sallie to lose her metaphorical soup in uproarious laughter, or at least given her a decent snicker. Presently, she wasn't feeling so much like laughing—there was a time and a place for jokes, and this wasn't it. She did, however, get a good smirk out of the matter, which was more than she could say for the rest of the day's events. The somewhat hostile introductions (and Sallie knew that "hostile" was probably too strong a word, but it was the best she could think of at the moment) didn't bode well for the rest of this endeavor.

And all at once, a vague sense of dread at being the voice of reason for this group of less-than-conventional individuals washed over her. Even vampires weren't immortal, per se, and she'd rather like to keep her head where it sat on her shoulders. Standing around sulking was probably not conducive to that, she decided, perching her already impressively shortened cigarette on her lips and taking the old white case in her off hand. "Maybe the big lug has a point," she said, largely good-naturedly. "We certainly won't get much done standing around with our teeth in our mouth."

Sallie had a few questions she wanted to ask Ylaine. As a matter of fact, she had a few questions she wanted to ask everyone present. Who, exactly, was she dealing with? She knew that the answer as far as their employer would likely come to a dead-end; she'd been 'round the track a few times, and had made a point to glean as much out of their phone conversation as she could manage (which was about enough to fill one of the little divots in a golf-ball, truth be told). He didn't seem like the sort of man to leave information lying around, and those who knew anything about him probably wouldn't divulge that information to a stranger in cordial conversation. But the rest of the myriad of Monsters—now that was another story. Face-to-face, she had a much better chance of getting a feel for who she was working with, and already she was starting to get some small indication as to who would prove to be bearable and whom she would want to keep a good distance from on their venture.

The two vampires who had arrived earlier (she assumed they were vampires, at least, from the smell) seemed congenial enough, at least for given values thereof, and though Wolfgang made her somewhat uncomfortable and smelled a mite like wet dog, he seemed, when his wits were about him, like he was willing enough to cooperate. She'd dealt with big guys before—it was rare that she felt threatened by them nowadays. The old woman, now she looked familiar, although Sallie couldn't place her face off the top of her head. This was what filing systems were for, and she hadn't had access to one of those in over a year. The man who'd been sitting on the crates when she'd arrived reminded her of a small dog, not necessarily meek, but—well, alright, meek was probably the best word.

She had the sneaking suspicion that the was more than he seemed—otherwise, why would Abe have hired him? After all, each of them seemed to have something nasty lurking just under the surface of their humanity. He sat near the top of her list, along with the long-haired chap who hadn't said a word since he'd arrived.

Flicking the butt of her cigarette unceremoniously off the dock and into the water, Sallie decided that the best course of action was to move herself along, and made towards the end of the dock herself. "Your bag's unzipped, just so you know, big guy," she added politely as she approached. "I didn't think it was legal for women to bend that way."

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Character Portrait: Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Sallie Harris
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"Ooh, yes!" Ylaine said, perking up abruptly. That was an idea she approved of! She wasn't one to enjoy standing idle--especially without mint gum to occupy her maws. She made a quiet note to put in a good word for Wolfgang, assuming she would have the capability to do so after all this was said and done. "Go time--uh... I don't suppose you guys have a team name of some sort, do ya? Like the A-Team or Thundercats?"

Her flippant nonchalance evaporated when she overheard Sallie's quip. She directed her attention to the object the older (hm... no, younger) woman referred to, and then Ylaine's left brow propelled straight up. She wasn't blushing. Goodness knows it's been a long time since she last blushed, and something as standard as a bit of risque was not about to make her start anew. What the bundle of bouncing pornographic pamphlets did do was remind her just how long they were expected to hang out in the middle of the ocean. Ylaine loved the ocean and loved being in it, but she couldn't say the same of being on a gigantic, wholly sinkable metal construction.

It wasn't a big, hulking thing that awaited them. As anyone acquainted with Ebenezer's benevolence would expect, it was modest; save the sleek coat of black paint, with nary a barnacle in sight. The vessel was no cruise ship, but a sensible cargo ship: its wooden tongue rolled out in welcome from the center of its body. Two crewmen punctuated the sides of the plank bridge. Their heads were bowed reverently, but it was neither for Ylaine nor the Monsters in her company. When all were aboard, the men would murmur a few anxious southeast asian words, to Ylaine and to one another, then made themselves scarce behind the locked doors. Every other working member of the ship seemed to emulate the behavior.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Micah Colby Ames Character Portrait: Wolfgang Wolf von Krieger Character Portrait: Annabelle Reed
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#, as written by Deallo
Annabelle was oddly surprised to look at the poster in Ylaine's hands, meeting their escort, a pot. Yes, a pot of some sort wrapped around a cheap advertisement from some magazine. The elderly woman wasn't an expert in these sort of things but somehow she had a different mindset of when "escort" came to mind, someone who was an important figure in politics or witness to a large conspiracy, not a...pot. Perhaps she watched too many spy movies. Maybe there's something inside it she thought, before turning her attention elsewhere. It was the gentleman who'd lifted her bag of munitions from the trunk of her car, obviously struggling, like he had the weight of the world on his shoulders.

"Oh dear, just drop it right here alright?" Anna said to her helper, who did so right at the end of her sentence, all tired and worn out. She went to the bag, grabbed the handle and with the push of a button, extended it upwards. "Thank you very much, dear." She said to Micah. The really large fellow, the one who feigned over woman so easily, suggested they walk, which she did while pulling the luggage with the help of two black rubber wheels on the bottom. Although when something dropped from his bag, the elderly woman motioned to pick it up, and just as quickly reversed that action as soon as she caught sight of the naked woman splayed across the page. She pretended that she couldn't hear a word of what Wolfgang said. Denial is a skill, a skill that only improved with age, especially with awkward situations like this one.

Having found the boat at the end of the docks; Annabelle was rather glad that the ship was inconspicuous enough. The thought of going on one of those large cruise ships just packed with old people going on vacation was something she abhorred. The only thing that can possibly be any worse were one of those dilapidated retirement homes that kids would drop their elderly parents in. The cargo ship even had a crew of it's own, filled with foreigners, mumbling something to each other. This was Mexico all over again; everyone talking but she couldn't understand a damn thing. It was the only reason she learned the language in the first place. Well, it wasn't, but it was one of the more important ones. Paranoia slowly crept on Anna, who turned back to stare into the faces of the ship-mates, in an attempt to assess the situation. They seemed confused to see them going on board.

"Does anyone happen to know what they're saying?" The elderly weapon called out to her fellow 'monsters', having her free hand close to the handgun under her trench-coat in case this was going to get out of control, the white purse hanging on the nook of her elbow in the same fashion that she approached Micah with.