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Dunkelzahn

Wherever I go, I don't belong. I don't even fit in my own skin.

0 · 590 views · located in Earth

a character in “How to spot a Faerie”, as played by XianEvermor

Description

Full name: Dunkelzahn
"Zahn"
Kiss


Image

Height: 5' 8''

Appearance: Zahn is average in height, but striking in appearance. She's incredibly fit and it shows, even when her clothes aren't flattering for her figure. She has a thick mop of inky black hair that almost seems to suck the light out of the air, starkly contrasting her pale complexion. Zahn's eyes are a brilliant amber, and glint brightly, especially in the darkness. Probably the most noticeable thing about her, however, is her unusual tattoos. Stretching the length of her back are foreign symbols and signs that don't belong to any earth language arranged with in an array of circles, and some kind of script running down her spine. On each of her shoulders is a similar tattoo that is much smaller, with the script running all the way down to her hands. Zahn commonly covers these markings, whether it be gloves, or long sleeved shirts, or jackets. Most of her co-workers in the IPAF don't even know she has them.

Alternate Form [if applicable]: (none as of yet)

Gender: Female
Sexuality: Les. Men are bastards.
Age: 37
Species: Shapeshifter

Personality

Personality: Zahn comes across as cold and aloof, her squad callsign is even "Ice Heart." She always has this sensation that she is out of place, and because of it she keeps people at a distance through emotional walls. Zahn is always in a state of inbetween, transitioning from one empty relationship to another. In the same manner, since she was discharged from the US military, she's left behind a laundry list of menial jobs. Zahn is always trying to find her place, but no matter how hard she tries she always feels "almost human."

Quirks: Like many sharpshooters, Zahn has a minor addiction to Diazepam, which reduces anxiety and soothes involuntary body tremors which decrease accuracy over long range. She has a major addiction to painkillers as well, which help mitigate her insomnia. Oxycontin in particular.

Likes:
Solitude
First dates
No strings relationships
Hard candy
Long baths
Dislikes:
Attachment
Large crowds
Confined spaces
Arid environments

Equipment

Role: Water Elemental

Powers: Shapeshifting into various animal species, or that should be the case. Zahn is pretty sure that since her mother and father were both shifters, that she should also be a shifter. That's how it works right? But aside from the aging factor, and her increased rate of healing, she's always been merely human. She is stronger than average for her size, has higher than normal endurance, and an incredible physique. In spite of these things, she's never experienced any power or ability outside the human spectrum.

Water sense: Zahn has an uncanny ability to locate and track water from great distances, even underground

(partial awakening) Aqua-rejuvination: In many stories, the element of water is known to have healing properties. Being submerged in water accelerates her healing factor and has a rejuvinating effect, leeching toxins from her body and restoring vitality. With training, she would be able to use this to heal others as well. In its current, partially awakened state, proximity to water has a "refreshing" effect.

(unawakened) Aquakinetic: The ability to control, direct, or otherwise manipulate water on a molecular level.

Abilities: Zahn has impeccable eyeshight, agility, and hand-eye coordination. She is an excellent shot, especially at a distance and has had martial arts training from the IPAF. She is also adept at freerunning. If you count IQ as an ability, she has a knack for physics especially when it concerns ballistics, and can do long range ballistics calculations in her head.

Preferred Weapons: "Mercy." The preferred anti-anything weapon. When Zahn must be absolutely sure her first shot turns its target into chunky bits, the Windrunner M96 .50 BMG is her weapon of choice. Zahn's preference is hand turned, hollow core, magnesium tipped tungsten rounds (which penetrate, turn inside-out, and then explode). Cost to pull the trigger: approximately $40. Incendiary, discarding sabot, armor piercing depleted uranium, and the .50 cal mk-211 Raufoss explosive rounds are also available. The weapon's ability to break down into 5 parts and fit in a large briefcase, combined with the large selection of .50 caliber ammunition types makes the M96 a very versatile weapon. However, at nearly 30 pounds before scopes and ammunition, it's impractical to deploy outside of a stationary nest.

The Accuracy International Super Magnum (L115A1) chambered in .338 Lapua Magnum "Diplomacy" is Zahn's go-to weapon. She used it extensively during her tours in Afghanistan and Iraq and although she doesn't sleep with it under her pillow, for rifle shots inside of 2000 meters it is her favorite. "Mary," her P90 and "Sue," her Sig Sauer P239 .40 cal are what she prefers when she must trek with the other grunts into close combat. If things go real sideways and she ends up in melee she likes to use a tomahawk and a combat knife.

History

Biography: A fine morning in New York: light glinted off the glass of the urban forest and into the window, silhouetting Zahn's svelte curves as she leaned against it. Her breath steamed the window against the chill as she leaned against it, and for a long while she just gazed, watching the sun rise for the third time this week, her amber eyes mirroring the gold glow spreading across the city. Something rustled behind her, and a tangled mass of blond hair rolled over to reveal a statuesque face with perfect pink lips. Green eyes opened slowly, squinting against the light and she groaned and squeaked as she stretched.

"It's cold," she whined, with a pout. The corners of Zahn's full lips twisted into a smile.

"And?" She asked.

"Warm me up before you go?" Zahn let her stew for a long moment before turning and making her way over. She crawled back underneath the covers and almost immidiately felt the woman's hands travel up underneath her figure hugging white V neck.

"Your hands are frigid," Zahn gasped.

"And I want to put them on you," she giggled, pulling Zahn close. "It's my day off... sure you can't play hooky?"

"I have an appointment I can't miss," Explained Zahn, pressing her face into the crook of the woman's neck. Zahn sighed slowly across her collarbone, feeling the goosebumps travel up and down the woman's skin.

"Come back after?" She pleaded. Zahn gave a smile.

"Sure," she lied.

Zahn was dressed and out into the chill air a while after, and her breath fogged as she walked. She wore her "look-at-my-ass" jeans, a cute blue track hoodie, and her trademark fingerless leather gloves under which her tattoos were hidden. Zahn generally only revealed them to whoever she was sleeping with. Sarah and she had been together for almost three weeks now: a new record. The spark was already gone and Zahn didn't really intend to go back, not when she could be with someone new and exciting... and it wasn't hard for her: she had fifty numbers in her cell to canvas for an intimate encounter. Or she could walk into one of the endless clubs the New York night life had to offer and just point at somebody. She thought about what she would do as she trotted up the steps to the Howard building and pulled her "Kit the Cat" Skelanimals wallet from her hoodie pocket.

Zahn tapped it pretentiously against the RFID tag reader at the door and pushed, but the door didn't yield. She pulled out her cell to check the time and sighed. Early again... five minutes yet, which ticked away like hours as the city began to wake up around her. A second try allowed her through the door where she made a bee line for the Starbucks. Minutes later, prize in hand, she rode the elevator to the fourth floor and walked out, cradling her latte to warm her chilled fingers.

"You're early," a male voice said with a note of displeasure. "Again."

"I couldn't sleep," she answered, and laid down on one of the plush leather couches... they were black this month.

"Your name for the record."

"Dunkelzahn, formerly Julia Smith... Nickel-three-four. AKA 'Iceheart.' Sniper," she said in a practiced tone.

"We don't call them 'snipers' anymore," he said, and a pair of red eyes watched her from a shadowed chair in the opposite corner. The man made her skin crawl, but she guessed the best shrinks were immortal.

"Long-distance serial killer then," she corrected, taking a careful sip of her steaming latte.

"Is that how you see yourself? A killer?"

"That's why I was hired wasn't it? Because I end lives? Or was it because I hold the current record for longest distance confirmed kill? No? Perhaps someone in higher management thinks I look pretty. Don't sugar coat the facts, Daemon: I shoot people."

"Do you consider the Fae 'people?'"

"They have definable humanoid characteristics, have the ability to reason, some of them are highly intelligent, and they are living beings. I think it would be... inappropriate not to consider them a 'people.' It doesn't matter one way or another how you or the rest of the organization chooses to classify them, they're only targets to me. Someone points... I shoot."

"Hmm," said Daemon, and he scribbled something in his notepad... like he did every time she answered that question. "Tell me about your childhood, You're a shifter aren't you?"

Zahn raised an eyebrow in his direction as she took another sip from her latte... it was almost cool enough to drink. This was new... granted she'd seen him eighteen times in the past six months, they were probably running out of things to grill her on. Because of the way her military service ended she supposed she was a particularly high psychological risk.

"My mother and father were both shifters if that's what you mean. I... didn't inherit the gift, but my brother did."

"Was it hard being different?"

"I never felt like I belonged with the rest of my family. It was tradition to go hunting during the full moon so they could appreciate the naked beauty of nature in its most visceral form. I never got to go... I guess most of the time I just faded into the background. School life wasn't much better. Before the revelation that paranormals walked among humans we had to hide what we were. I never had any trouble with it because I couldn't change like they could, but the other kids still knew I was different. They called me 'evil-eye Julia' all the way until I graduated high school. Sometimes I was even accused of being a witch. It goes without saying that I didn't have many friends. Most of the girls were okay: it was the boys that were trouble. They never could let it go even after I became... physically desirable."

"And how about now? After the reveal things must have gotten better," Daemon asked, scribbling something on his pad.

"I sleep with more women in a month than most of the men in this building do in a year," she answered with a sly smile.

"I see," he said pointedly. There could have been a hint of jealousy in his voice, it was hard to tell. "Do any of these women..."

"Yes," she interrupted, giving her latte a very proper sip. "Eye contact, Daemon," she reminded. She'd caught his gaze wandering off into the aether for a moment, probably lost in his own fantasies.

"Right, so what happened after graduation?"

"I joined the United States Marine Corps and left home for boot as soon as the paperwork was finalized."

"And how did you end up becoming a sniper?"

"It's a funny story, actually. I managed to show up most of the male recruits on their home turf when it came to physical trials so one of the boys thought it would be a cute joke to send me over to the sniper range when I was supposed to be qualifying with the M16. I got there expecting my squad with M16s... I found boys with long rifles. So of course when I asked what was happening, they thought it would be a ball to tell me I was in the right place. Well... qualification on the known distance course for M16s starts at 200 meters, with the longest target at 500 meters. The closest target on the sniper range is 500 meters. I only got one shot off before I was confronted by the instructor.

"'Did you just shoot that target, private?' He asked me. 'Sir, yes sir. Hit, ten ring,' I answered like there was nothing wrong. He asked me if I could do it again... so I did. 'Keep firing,' he ordered. So I did, and after my five rounds were up, he ordered everyone on the range to put their rifles down. 'Can somebody please tell me why there is a private on my range?' he asked. 'Thought you might haze the new kid a little, thought it might be funny?' he shouted at them again without waiting for an answer. 'Will everyone please turn their scope on the target in lane three,' he ordered. 'Now look at your own target. If anyone's grouping is even one centimeter larger than hers, turn in your goddamn rifles and hit the gauntlet!' After a moment every single one of them got up and left.

"'Sir, did I do something wrong, sir?' I asked, genuinely confused at this point. 'No, private. You did something right, now get your scrawny ass to the M16 course on the other side before you miss your goddamn qualification!' I don't think I ever ran somewhere so fast... the next day I was transferred and shipped off to 'seer' school where they train snipers. After that... well... 911... Afghanistan, Iraq..." she trailed off, sure that Daemon got the picture.

"Interesting," he chuckled a little. "Tell me how your service ended."

"I shot a child," answered Zahn without missing a beat, though her gaze was lowered. She spent a long time studying her latte. "Couldn't have been older than seven or eight. I'd been stalking an HVI..."

"HVI?" Daemon interrupted.

"High Value Individual. I'd been stalking him for a couple of days with my spotter: a useless sack of meat... I used to have him run out in the open to distract people so I could shoot them without revealing my position," she said with a wistful grin on her face and took a moment to savor a particular memory while sipping her latte. "I used to call him 'Shiny Keys' even though his callsign was 'Ghost.' We'd been on the trail of this asshole who'd been sneaking over by our camp to set up IEDs... Improvised Explosive Devices. They had a whole cadre of ragheads doing it, but if you take down their commander they generally have no clue what they're doing. Shoot the guy with the tallest hat... acceptable American strategy since the revolutionary war," she chuckled a little.

"We had to set up pretty far out. Spotter lased it at about 2600 meters, and contrary to what movies and video games depict, bullets travel and are affected by physics. Gravity, air density, humidity... the farther it goes, the more momentum it loses. Flight time for a .338 Lapua Magnum at that distance is just under five seconds. I wasn't even sure I could make the shot, and I argued with my spotter for a long time over whether or not we should try and move closer or go back and get the .50 even though we're not technically allowed to shoot people with it... I did, however, engage a lot of belt buckles, hats, and sunglasses. Well, he convinced me going back wasn't an option, and I convinced him that neither was getting closer, so we set up where we were.

"Snipers often brag about their farthest confirmed kill... they never say anything about the shots they missed because their target bent down to pick something up, or walked away, or were blocked by a jeep that came to park or by some random asshole running up to talk to them. A lot can happen in five seconds. I wasn't confident on the head shot, so I aimed for center mass and let it fly... and a kid ran by to chase a ball that had been kicked past him. We watched that asshole for a full day and never saw any women or children. We later found out that out of our site line a few dozen yards away was another part of the village where the women and children were segregated," she finished, pulling her knees up to her chest and cradling her latte which was now merely very warm.

"There was an investigation, and I was ultimately ruled to not be at fault... but I wasn't the same after that. They shipped me home after a lot of long hours in offices like this one... with judicious assholes like you. I signed up with a private military group not too long afterwards as an instructor. I stuck with that for a while... I've done lots of things since then. I've flipped burgers. I've worked a call center. I've worked in a grocery store... I drifted for a long time before you guys found me."

"Did you ever get over it?" he asked, and for a long time she just stared into her knees.

"I don't think you'd have hired me if I had," she answered, and Daemon scribbled some notes in a long silence. "Are we done?"

"Yes, I think that'll do for today."

Zahn got up and walked straight out of the office to the elevator. She didn't wave or greet any of the people who were beginning to bustle about the building, she walked straight out and didn't stop until she was well out of sight of the building's incriminating cameras. She knew they were probably still watching her with spy satellites or some other conspiracy bullshit but being away from the building was the important part. Zahn pulled out a half empty packet of small round pills and pushed two out of the foil and into a shaking hand and didn't think twice before taking them with a large gulp from her latte. She threw the remains of her drink at a trash can and resumed walking, flipping through the myriad of numbers in her phone. Stacy, Emily, Juliette, Jo, Cember and a few dozen others... none of them appealed to her. Instead she ended up back at Sarah's place standing outside the door of the third floor apartment for what seemed like ages.

She knocked. Sara answered wearing that little pink silk robe Zahn liked so much with a spoon hanging from her mouth. Fruit Loops... Zahn could smell it from the door and a smile tugged at the corners of her lips. She stepped inside, slipping her lithe fingers around Sara's waist. The door shut behind her.

Spoon clattered to the floor.

Other:

So begins...

Dunkelzahn's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Azriel De'mourn Character Portrait: Raena Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn
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*Human. Scope confirms it* Zahn's sultry voice chirped inside Kiser and Chris' earpieces, mainly to let them know she was watching from... somewhere. *Finish buckling your belt: if you flash me again I'm going to shoot you... with the big rifle: the one that turns Fae inside-out.*

Zahn adjusted her scope for windage again, thankful for the big puffy flakes of snow. By watching the swirling eddies she could calculate the exact path wind would blow the bullet, and visibility wasn't a problem with the nifty thermal overlay the IPAF had thought to install. She had most of the other toys disabled. The shot prediction matrix was usually wrong, and mainly just got in her way, and the only time she turned on the facial recognition was to confirm a target. Too many blips... too many distractions... windage, GPS range finding, electronically guided bullets. All just crutches for wet behind the ears marksmen who couldn't place a bullet where they wanted it to go.

"Jeesus, dead body..." chimed "Archer," her spotter. "Wait, it's moving. Kiser's six o'clock."

"I don't see anything," Zahn replied with a note of skepticism. "The boys are probably dropping LSD in your coffee again."

"No, seriously!! He just jumped off of a thirty story building!"

"Whatever, there's nothing on thermal," she snipped as she started to re-adjust to get Kiser back in her scope.

"Turn off the thermal and look with your eyes!," Archer insisted, literally pointing out the window now. Zahn sighed, lifting her head from the scope to spear him with her amber-eyed glare and pursed her full lips into a thin line.

"If I turn off the thermal, and there's nothing there I'm gonna shank a bitch," she warned reaching up to deactivate the thermal overlay. She rested her cheek against the butt of her rifle and peered through her scope, zeroing in on the rooftop in question. "Huh, son of a bitch," she grunted, spotting a black clad man on the edge of the rooftop.

"SEE?!"

"Oh, whatever vampires were a myth just a few years ago, I'm still adjusting," she said, with a small amount of venom.

"... Isn't your mom a shapeshifter?" Zahn paused, thinking about the subject for a long time. She'd never considered herself anything more than human since she couldn't change shapes. Watching Kiser change to his lion shape had sent a spike of jealousy straight into her gut, which was also one of the reasons she kind of hoped the man dropped his pants again so she could deliver on her threat.

"Touche..." she noted in that tone of voice that suggested she wouldn't forget this conversation and pressed to transmit on the sub-vocal mic around her throat. "Interested 'fanger' to your six o'clock... rooftop, five story building... the one with the deli on the first floor... amazing roast beef. He's... got something spinning around him, could be a weapon but I can't confirm from here, thermal is useless," she explained and released the transmitter.

"You think anyone but a Fae could survive under all that ice?" Archer asked.

"The scope doesn't lie," she replied with a note of sarcasm. "Archer thinks you should pull her out of the ice, Kai," she said, pressing a finger to her sub-vocal.

"I said no such thing," he snipped in a wounded tone. Zahn giggled.

"Well when you can place a bullet, you can carry the comm... besides... who doesn't want to watch Kai jump into a bay full of freezing water and ice? That'll teach him to leave his cock flapping in the wind."

"Wow... you are vindictive, I thought it was just gossip," he laughed.

"That's not true... I'm the nicest sniper in this squad."

"The only sniper," he corrected with a roll of his eyes. Zahn just grinned.

"Just think... from this distance, nobody down there would even hear the gunshot that killed him. He'd just wake up at the pearly gates staring at St. Peter wondering what the fuck just happened," she said wistfully, centering the reticle on Kiser, then adjusting for wind, spin-drift, and the Coriolis effect. "Bang," she whispered.

She had an aim-point for every distance in her line of sight out to about 3000 meters. This was one of her normal haunts for the bay area: an abandoned floor of an office building about three quarters of a mile from where Kiser was standing. Contrary to popular belief, it's asinine to shoot from a rooftop where everybody and their dog can see you, and equally foolish to hang your rifle out the window. No, she'd rolled out her comfortable gel mat and was laying on top of a conference table several feet inside the darkened room, watching the bay through the scope of her Windrunner M96. The window was open just enough for her to see through and keep most of the chill out. It was still freezing inside, but compared to the miserable winters she'd spent in Afghanistan, this was still quite pleasant.

"Do you ever wonder what they feel... you know if people get that sensation they're being watched?" Archer asked, leaning back in his chair and rubbing his eyes.

"Nope," Zahn answered. "I'm always the watcher..."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Raena Character Portrait: Iokul Frosti Character Portrait: Justin Maysharp Character Portrait: Yuki Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn
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The snow was absolute.
Complete.
And with it brought silence. Sweet silence that couldn't penetrate the blanket of snow about her body.

The figure couldn't be seen from any angle but straight above, an aerial view of an empty park. She lie among the snow in nothing but a thin silk gown that was weighed down and settled by snow. One could barely see her bare toes in the frost, skin such a color that it blended her visible flesh into her surroundings. The only thing that marked her form was a tidal wave of dark hair, spilling out over the snow. It was jet black, like ink on fresh paper. Snowflakes had settled into the locks, and upon her small blue lips, which barely ghosted out small streams of fog that one might mistakenly assume was her breath. Her so called breaths did nothing more then crackle in the air, colder then the molecules it made to join. Her eyes, the color of glass reflecting ice, didn't blink, instead opting to follow the dance her thin fingers made as she caught snow drifting in the air.
It was impossible; though not to someone like her. Ice streamed off her fingers to keep the snow intact, and slowly, patiently, the small bundle of snow was shaped into a tiny bird, wings outstretched.
Her blue lips stretched into a smile, stroking tenderly over the wings of her creation. The bird was amazingly detailed, every feather outlined, the eyes staring at the woman as though it had a soul.
There was a small crack, and the wings were thrown aside as the pale fingers broke them off.
"♫Hush little birdy don't make a squeak, I don't want to hear a sound from that beak, and if little birdy you want to sing, mommys going to break more then just your wings,♫"

She had decided upon a British accent today. Her pronunciation was especially strict on her 't's' and 'k's'. Her sing-song voice left ice crackling in the air, and as though recognizing the malice of her words, a few nearby live birds, searching for food, hopped a bit away.

"♫And after mommy breaks your legs, if birdy still talks I'll crack your eggs. And birdy better try to keep it's words in check, or mommy's going to have to wring your little neck.♫"

There was another snap and either end of the ice bird, head and body, were discarded to the sides. The figure sat slowly up and every bird in the near proximity took off in a flurried panic.

Yuki sighed and looked after the birds with longing. "I wish I could fly,"
Her giggles rang out in the air as her own wings spread far behind her. Of course, a glamour had been cast, so any wandering humans wouldn't see a thing. She spun in a circle, shaking the loose snow off of herself, tilting her head the gloriously enraged sky.
A new development in the weather for today. A blizzard. How nice. The past few days had been steady, fluffy snow, in many cities including this one. A blizzard was a refreshing change. The wind tore at her clothing, whipping her dress behind her and screaming into her ears as she considered how to occupy herself for the day.

She could continue searching for her beloved King, whom she hadn't heard of outside of signs in the weather. Or, she could even search for the wretched Queen woman.
Like usual though, Yuki would probably end up toying with the pathetic humans.
Oh, what fun they were, with their fleshy skin so vulnerable to cold. Easily torn emotions, so fun to manipulate. Their inability to fly, so... unfortunate when left in a tundra.

Her thoughts were interrupted by a crack. Louder then her ice birds wings or neck, but a sound she recognized, carried through the violent wind.
Oh yes, Yuki was certain. That was ice cracking. A very large amount of ice.
She took to the sky in glee, skillfully navigating the harsh blizzard. She knew where to go; The Bay. The only area that would match the break she'd heard. Ice spoke to her, and she trusted it.
~
There was already a bit of commotion. The beautiful frosting over of the water was laden with spiderwebs of cracks, originating from a point the most humans were gathered around. Farther down, there were a few small holes in the ice. One had a few human girls in distress around it,peering into the hole and yelling for assistance.
Yuki smiled in amusement. She was invisible to human eyes while flying, thanks to glamour, and when she landed near the girls, she was equally invisible. The patch of water in the ice was already looking frigid. No doubt by tomorrow the Bay would look like new. Well, new in terms to when it was frozen, that is.
Yuki simply decided to help the process, cold seeping from her bare feet towards the hole. It began rapidly sealing, and Yuki walked away with their shrieks of protest at her back.
Had there really been no other incidents, other then the one? No other silly humans freezing? Ah, except this next commotion of course.
Yuki blended with the bystanders prior to releasing her glamour, so no one but a young teenager was startled by her appearance. Yuki quickly made sure her human glamour was in place, adding the illusion of long boots and a winter coat. The boy stuttered disbelief and Yuki raised a finger to her lips in a 'Sh' sign, freezing his lips together. Ranged freezing was no problem, as long as it was nothing big.

She shuffled through the small crowd to try and see what was happening, preferring to be close and eavesdrop then fly over head and look. All she could see was a blonde boy, wrapping a cloak around the presumably near-drowned human.
Yuki was met with disappointment that they had already pulled her out. But something else felt off. That she would admit.
Her eyes turned to scan the surrounding area. Her attention was snagged on a small Winter Faerie. Though antisocial, Yuki could sense her own kind.
However, she was more interested in the men standing above him.
Damn IPAF. They were everywhere. International Posse of Annoying Fuckers. No, Yuki didn't like that nickname. The elegancy of human 'curses' was lacking.
She turned back to the crowd, hoping neither of the vile men had noticed anything off about her, or her stare for that matter. She didn't care about the stupid Fae who'd been caught. She'd been able to escape run ins with the IPAF in other cities, under different glamours, and she'd always managed to slip away. It was his own fault.
Mostly, Yuki hoped there weren't any others lurking around, who would be able to discern her. Her glamour skills were strong, but she deffinitly didn't want to get caught.
She watched the blonde boy hug the drowned rat close, complaining that no one had called '911'.

Yuki couldn't help the giggle that pressed forth at those words. She found this 911 so pointless. But she was curious about the one the blonde held, and the off feeling she radiated.
Yuki held out her hand, pushing past the few bystanders to the front. Her hand would show a glamour of a cell phone, really just a small rectangle of ice.
"I'll call," She said shyly, with something akin to an Australian accent. She held the ice to her ear, keeping up her glamours as she moved around the boy, trying to glimpse the victims face.

Yuki's heart nearly stopped, and the air became even more frigid then it had been previously. It was the Queen. She could tell, through some ability she had, for she was Fae, but...
The Queen had no magic. She was... Mortal.
So many thoughts of muurder flashed into Yuki's mind she could hardly hold her glamours. Kill the Queen, and all Fae could stay in this world forever.
She could stay in this world.
Her hand trembled as it held the ice/phone to her ear, the block already slowly shifting into a knife. She hide it by her hair, trying to calm herself. Things wouldn't have to be so dramatic. If she was mortal, pathetic, weak mortal, simple cold would kill her.

"May I see her? I have Red Cross training, for emergencies like this," She cast her eyes down like she was embarrassed, beginning to shyly state the type of problem to her fake phone while glancing timidly up at the boy. Lying through her teeth. Acting. It was what she did best.
And it would serve her well here.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Azriel De'mourn Character Portrait: Tiggy The Summer Fae Character Portrait: Raena Character Portrait: Justin Maysharp Character Portrait: Yuki Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn
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#, as written by Layla
The Queen was half of the world: the stems of which held the leaves, the light that coloured the world, the breaths each human exhaled, the blood that ran through the streams of all, the Sun, the Moon, everything. The world could not exist without Her, just as it could not without Him.

Long ago, a beautiful existence - the embodiment of Light - fell in love with Darkness, They could not be and the Gods warned them of the tragedy that would befall them should they pursue their passions. Light could not be with Darkness without chasing Him away and Darkness could not touch Light without drenching Her in His abyss. They listened not, however, and in the Shadows - where they almost touched, barely touched, somewhat did - they loved.

They defied the Gods and defied their nature, choosing one another above all else. Light and Darkness Created beings of their own, creatures made of their own essences, and named them the Fey. They became what was too wicked for Heaven and too good for Hell, an existence their Creators, too, lived. And so, they became the Light Queen and the Dark King and for what seemed to be too short a time, Light and Darkness lived as one.

Yet, the Dark King craved for more, whilst his lover did not. The Light Queen held on, begged and pleaded for the Dark King to stay, to be content with the haven they'd created for themselves. But the Dark King grew weary of what was and the Unchanging Queen could not change. Not in that way, at least. Not then. The Seelie and Unseelie Courts were formed, one closer to Hell and the other to Heaven, but neither ever close enough. The Queen - not wishing for her love to be alone - gave him a part of her soul and a part of all she was. The Dark King did the same and so the Light Queen treasured the Summer of her King's and the King, her Autumn.

However, the Light Queen could not find happiness in an existence so far removed from her King, her love, her Darkness. Light grew dim, until she was barely Light at all. She wept endlessly in what seemed to be a never-ending existence of tears and still, there were not enough oceans to fill her misery. There was a single Fey, however, the first Fey to ever have been created by Darkness and Light: Praxis Lethe.

He offered his Queen an escape from the torment: he offered her emptiness. Light gladly accepted, allowing for the Spring Fey to drain all of her emotions, all of her pain, until she was but a shell, but nonetheless, a shell without pain. Praxis became the Queen's second, taking all of her emotions so she could be Order, and Order she was. Under her cold rule, the Faerie Realms prospered. Under their emotionless Queen, they lived in balance.

But it was not to last.

The Dark King - in his need for Chaos and more - condemned the Fey to an existence on Earth and the Monarchs, to a life of theft. Light disappeared in the shift from the Faerie Realms to Earth and now the world was in threat of toppling from its fragile balance. Order was gone and now Chaos ruled.

Yet there, in a world shattered in ice, it was difficult to believe the frail - but oh so beautiful - woman had made the world. Was the world. She could not die; for if she did, the world would cease to exist, crumbling upon itself and Unmaking. Yet the Queen shivered, her small body trembling furiously in the unrelenting cold as if it had forgotten it was meant to be capable of melting snow and bringing about life.

Her teeth chattered as the stranger - all strangers - bundled her in his warmth. She didn't know whether to scurry away or to chase the heat that this man emitted. Neither. She would stay still; that was easy enough seeing as she was utterly numb. Her thick lashes fluttered, her lids unsure whether to close, blink or widen. None. She would not move for that was all she knew to do and could do at the present. Forever? Time held no meaning, nothing did, yet it should. A blue as pale as a sky made of clouds creeped into her gaze, fracturing the previous emerald so it looked as if she had broken glass or shattered ice for irises. It was the colour of fear as her heart threatened to rip itself from the veins that held it in place and crack against her ribcage. She felt like a flimsy piece of glass, as if the slightest breath of wind would shatter her to pieces. No, that was the world. The world was to break and she would be caught in the midst of it, as would her children - children? - and... The pounding in her being was fear.

There was someone. Someone who could take the fear away, take it all away. But who? The thought slipped from her mind, spilling from its cup and evaporating before it touched the ground. Amethysts, sapphires and rubies raced across her blue eyes, painting the confusion and chaos she felt so deeply in her gaze. No, she was not meant to be Chaos. Figures seemed to appear in the snow, darkness gathering into one familiar being and - it was gone. She felt as if she'd just been excavated from her mother's womb and she had to fill the silence with her cries but she could not cry. Could not utter a sound or breath and that was when she remembered she had to breathe.

She gasped, drinking in the precious air that the space about her held. Her kaleidoscope eyes darted frantically about, seeing but not seeing strange rectangular structures - giants - and odd, two-legged creatures. Head, check. Two arms, check. Two legs, check. Wings? Colour? They were dull but what were they? What was anything? Where was she? Who was she? The girl pressed her fingers into the side of her head, tugging at her strands of what was cascading snow for hair. Four walls pressed into her skull, threatening to tear it apart. Broken. She was broken and there was someone who could fix her. Had to. Who? Why?

“What are you waiting for? Somebody call 911!” shouted the man who held her. 911? She did not understand. Was that who she was? 911? No, why would he be calling her if she was there? Did that mean she was the spaces between each word? She was . Yes, that made sense. She was empty and she needed to be filled. She knew how. Light pulsed within the hearts of each figure, a blaze as unique as snowflakes. Her lids dropped lower, her pupils dilating as she pressed a cold hand against the chest of the man who held her. His light would fill her, fill the void, fill-

"May I see her? I have Red Cross training, for emergencies like this."

The Empty One raised her head, blinking thrice - precise - at the girl who'd spoken. An image of a mutilated bird made of ice crossed her mind for a brief moment, before disappearing into the abyss which seemed to be her head. Red Cross? What did such crosses symbolise? What did crosses symbolise? Where was the emergency? The language both this woman and the man spoke was strange, foreign, yet she understood it all. But she might as well have not for all the sense that it made. These words were tiring and she wished to sleep for another eternity, for that was what one did when they were weary.

Slept.

"Look up," a voice commanded. The Empty One raised her head, her long hair spilling over her bare shoulder like ivory silk on soft, porcelain skin. The Werelion pointed his gun at the angel, not trusting Zahn or anyone else, for that matter. The girl's eyes did not glow any more than a human's did, although its kaleidoscope appearance was rather unnerving. "Human," Kiser stated as he turned away. Drowning girls were not in his area and not a part of his contract. He would leave human girls to the care of kind old ladies or horrid, sick men - whichever - what did it matter?

The Empty One coughed, her shoulders shifting as she placed her fingers over her throat. Water. This was what one did when water entered their lungs and as if she'd just remembered she'd nearly drowned, the girl coughed furiously, doubling over and trembling in the cold. Stay still be cold numb drowning nothing everything take light empty breathe stop suffocate suffocating.

Iokul.

The name disappeared, as if snatched and soaked into the dark walls of her mind. Her now crystal grey eyes watered, their life dimming as she snatched desperate gasps from the air, before coughing furiously. She didn't know if she was meant to live or die so she settled for the in between, letting her body crumble - or perhaps unwillingly so - onto the ice and her head upon it as she clutched her breast. Breathe. Don't. Her eyes searched the world frantically, her heart throwing itself in all directions and the sounds, voices, noises were too loud. Too much. It was all too much and it would never be enough and she needed him to take it all away. Needed to stop feeling, to stop being anything but what she was meant to be.

She searched for him in the crowds of people - get away, get away, get away - light pulsed in the hearts of the figures around her - her light - and she reached for the woman who'd spoken of red crosses. She would take her light, her essence, her warmth -

Fill the void and silence the darkness.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Azriel De'mourn Character Portrait: Tiggy The Summer Fae Character Portrait: Raena Character Portrait: Justin Maysharp Character Portrait: Yuki Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn
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The girl's face was more beautiful then anything Justin had laid eyes upon. The Pink Puma paled in comparison to her even when she was shivering like an epileptic and was trying to pull off her best drowned rat impression. Underneath the streetlamps, her hair churned in a silver river, flowing across whatever it touched with a grace unmatchable by any mortal being. Her eyes sparkled like glass pools, staring into the empty space of the void beyond. The cut of her chin, the tone of her skin, the shape of her nose, everything about her was absolutely perfect.

The air was getting colder, he could tell from the slowly declining feeling in his bare arms. Pushing away the urge to take back his nice, warm cloak, Justin held the girl close and rubbed his arms. "May I see her? I have Red Cross training, for emergencies like this,". Justin looked up to see a stunning black haired woman appear from the crowd. Her locks forming a perfect contrast with the frigid snow and her pale skin. His mouth opened to say a hasty thank you when he sensed something...strange. The way her feet touched the ground, the distribution of her weight and the fluidity of her movements, all of them differed from the numerous others in range of his tremor-sense. Of course, everyone was different. Human's tended to slouch to the side they write with, vamps tend to move quicker and were's put a lot of weight on the front of their feet. This girl however, did not show any signs of these defining traits.

Along with his tremor-sense, the air seemed to grow colder the closer this girl came. Of course, it could just be his imagination, a simple trick of the mind. Still, Justin did not trust this girl. The thief shuffled back nervously, holding the girl towards him protectively. “It's alright, I have training myself. If you could, um, just phone, that would be great.” Lifting her off the ice, Justin carried her to the snowbanks beside it and laid the girl down on his cloak, running his hand through her wet, silky hair. 'All right, I've got to help her! Crap, crap! What do I do? Alright, just calm down and remember school. The first thing to do is...check for breathing!' The blonde boy lowered his ear to the girls mouth. Tiny puffs of air brushed against his cheek, just barely there. Nimble fingers gently pulled her chin upwards, opening her airway. 'Crap, what's next. She needs more breath. I guess that means....I'm gonna have to do.....CPR.'

A blush spread over the young thief's cheeks. Is he allowed? He would never even think of kissing someone without their permission of a sign of consent...but, this is to save her life. Slowly, Justin bent over the girl. Her face looked so peaceful, so serene, that he was afraid to disturb it for fear it would break into a thousand pieces. With one hand on her chin to keep the airway open and the other under her head to keep it stable, Justin, ever-so-gently, kissed the girl, blowing life-fueling air into her lungs.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Iokul Frosti Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Anastasia Varias Character Portrait: Kiser Nathaniel Burntwood
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"Ana," Chimed Kiser inside Zahn's earpiece. "Ana," he repeated. "We'll have to explain things to the families of Team 102. Send a team of cleaners to Lab 86B. Experiments 9, 12, 33, 216, 59, 18, 17 and 99 have been compromised."

Zahn clucked her tongue thoughtfully and wondered if Kiser knew she was tuned in to the director's frequency... mainly because she wasn't a part of any one squad. With her mobility and range, she could cover several teams at once so her orders usually came straight from the command center. Being the only long-distance sharpshooter in the city was sometimes a grueling job. She and Archer were on call 24/7 and had to be anywhere at a moments notice. Usually she rode her motorcycle anywhere she needed to get, but with the harsh, unnatural winter set in the conditions were completely un-rideable.

"How far is 86B from here?" She asked, taking a bite of a sandwich from the deli she'd spotted that one vampire on top of. Archer was still winded from the trip... the roast beef sandwich really was heavenly though.

"Uh," he mumbled, cradling his cup of coffee while he thought about it.

Zahn rolled her head over to the side to raise an eyebrow at him. She'd been laying on her back on top of the conference table, one foot propped up on a knee, which she tapped on the air impatiently as she waited for an answer. Her thick mop of black hair pooled around her aimlessly. She pulled a lukewarm french fry from a cup at her side and nibbled on it. With all the chaos happening in the park and surrounding areas and no orders to suppress, support, aid, spot, or otherwise maim anything within her range she'd taken to staring at the ceiling and playing Angry Birds on her phone for the remainder of her shift. Talking shit with Archer was also a given, since he was one of the few men she could stand to spend any amount of time with... his being gay helped a lot.

"We'd have to move to nest six to hit it, if that's what you're asking, hun," he said, sipping his coffee. He nearly spit it out, but managed to swallow the molten liquid, with that "I-just-burned-the-shit-out-of-my-mouth" expression on his face. "Why, we got orders finally?"

"Nope... but I'm bored," she answered. "How long will it take to get there?"

"Seven minutes, give or take. Assuming we pack everything and hustle."

"Too long," She bit her bottom lip in thought.

"You could probably make it in two if you did your Shinobi thing across the rooftops with whatever you could carry. Take this," he instructed and tossed her a small notebook. "The range increments for all our nests should be in there."

Zahn nodded, sitting up. She flipped through the notepad in a few seconds until she found the desired page, then stared at it for a handful of seconds and handed it back, then stuffed as many magazines of ammunition in her pouch as she could. She reached for her Arctic for one moment, then changed her mind and grabbed the sling that was next to it. She hooked either end onto the Windrunner and hefted it over one shoulder, securing it tightly to her back so that she could still move freely.

"Really?" Archer asked with a note of incredulity.

"Yup," Zahn answered with a grin. "Follow when you can, odds are I'll need the ammo before too long if things are as batshit as Kai seems to think," she ordered while quickly tying her hair up so that it wouldn't get in her way.

"Should I..."

"Yup!" She interrupted, and was out the door of the office. Archer just chuckled and started breaking down their nest.

The office doors whizzed past her in a blur as Zahn charged down the hallway. She planted a foot in the open window at the end and with a running step-up to the rail of the fire escape outside, she leapt across the alley. Unable to roll with the huge rifle strapped to her back, she planted a foot on the opposite railing and levered herself down with her hands. Zahn punched the open transmit on her earpiece as she stomped up the stairs of the fire escape towards the roof, taking the steps three at a time.

"Iceheart is in transit," she chimed in response to Ana's call for a cleanup crew. She didn't bother muting her microphone as she lazy-vaulted over the railing to the roof and sprinted to the other side. Her breathing was heavy and she knew the rapid crunch of snow beneath her footfalls probably crackled loudly in Ana's ear. "Permission to fire," Zahn said after about a minute. It was more of a statement than a question: she was going to fire when she got there whether Ana gave it or not.

She grunted as she hurdled an air conditioning vent and slid around a corner, using one hand to balance herself. Another short sprint sent her flying across another alley, and she grunted a second time as she landed, wincing against the pain in her ankles and toes and allowing her body to slide in the snow until she trusted her balance. She and archer had sort of cheated. While the nests were fairly close together so they could move from one to another as vantages changed, getting to and from one upper story office building to another could be fairly tedious what with going up and down elevators or stairs and crossing streets with a hundred or so pounds of gear in briefcases and bags. Instead they had laid out a network of makeshift bridges using some telescoping device the guys in Tech had come up with so they could traverse the rooftops between nests quickly and in relative stealth. In this case, Zahn had bypassed several of the crossing points by jumping across some of the alleys she was fairly confident she could cross.

Confidence was everything in freerunning...

In just over two minutes she reached her destination, her breath ragged as she gazed out over the city. There was no time to get down to the actual nest, she would have to shoot from the rooftop, which grated against her better judgement. Work with what you have, when you have it, however, and the one thing she did not have was time to get in position. Zahn slung her rifle down and plopped down near the edge of the roof, taking a few quick moments to cover herself in snow and disguise the silhouette of her rifle to make her harder to spot.

"In position," she puffed, and then returned her headset to a push-to-talk setting. She took deep, controlled breaths to slow her heart rate and spotted the ruined lab in her scope. Some kind of huge ice creature was bursting through the walls to engage the group of IPAF soldiers outside. It only took her a few moments to pop the magazine out of her rifle and line up the ones she had stashed in her pouch in front of her. She chose the bullets with the yellow tip and the white stripe... the explosive Raufus rounds had a binary compound in the tip, which mixed as the bullet spun in flight. It was designed to penetrate armor, explode, and spray shrapnel into whatever was on the other side. They'd probably blow the limbs off of a giant ice thing pretty handily too. She pushed the magazine in and slammed the first round home as she closed the bolt.

Deep breaths... She gazed through the scope, reaching up to flick the built in range finder on and flip through the vision modes until she found the one that offered the best visibility in the failing light. She cradled the stock tightly against her shoulder and zeroed in on her target.

Zahn exhaled, feeling a wave of calm wash over her.

Inhale.

Hold breath.

Count heartbeats... 1... 2... 3... 4...

Zahn waited for that one instant between heartbeats to squeeze the trigger. She exhaled sharply as the gun rocked against her, feeling the impact shoot down her spine and into her toes. The thunderous crack of the .50 blew the snow off her rooftop ledge into a large misty cloud and made her ears ring, even through the noise-canceling headset she wore. She estimated a three second flight time and didn't wait to see the impact of the first bullet. Instead she yanked the bolt back and slammed another round home. She squeezed the trigger again and her Windrunner blasted thunder over the rooftop as it fired a second shot.

The first bullet made a sharp crack! as it slammed home a little northeast of center mass in the creature's shoulder as it was reaching back to deliver a lethal swipe. The second crushed into its knee joint. Zahn fired a third and a fourth time, landing two solid hits center mass. Now solidly ranged in, she delivered the fifth and final bullet in the magazine straight into the creature's gaping mouth.

"The mail has been delivered," she transmitted over comm coolly as she dropped the smoking magazine next to her and reached for the magnesium tipped tungsten rounds... They weren't tipped in iron, but even the quickly regenerating weres had trouble recovering from being turned into a fine paste.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Elena J. D'Angelo Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Leau Character Portrait: Anastasia Varias Character Portrait: Rorgen Avulstein Character Portrait: Kiser Nathaniel Burntwood Character Portrait: Jenson Xion Character Portrait: Alistair D. James
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#, as written by Lenyx
Anastasia pushed open the door to her office, not bothering to check if everyone else was still with her. She assumed they would know better, and most of them wanted answers, not just with what she knows, but what she knew.

Anastasia's office was large, yet there was barely anything in the room. A cherry desk that seemed almost superfluous, since there is little to no paperwork to be seen, sat centered near the back of the room, with a black leather desk chair behind it. In front of the desk were two angled black leather love seats, facing towards the desk. In the room there were two small table lamps – one near the door atop a circular end table, and another on the cherry wood desk with a long brass pull-cord. The faint illumination of an overhead light cast shadows into the corners of the room, spilling under the desk and over top the few framed black-and-white photos on the wall. A lone filing cabinet occupied one of the the corners of the room, Anastasia always kept it locked, as she was the only one with a key. The deep blue curtains were drawn to one side, allowing light to filter in from outside the window. The room truly reflected Anastasia's personality and life style. Cold. Hard. Sophisticated. It is here she was always felt to be in complete control.

Taking her usual seat in her chair behind the table, Anastasia folded her hands together, resting them on the desk, and leaned back in her chair, just as Alistair came in.

"What's happened?"

“That, is why I am gathering you all here. To tell you all what I know, and every one of you is going to tell me what you know.” Anastasia looked around those in her room, noting Jenson and Dunkelzahn were the only ones missing. Anastasia was never one to wait on or for other people, so she continued. “Most of you may not know this, but I am not highly trusted here in the IPAF. Our superiors are quite a bit older than me, and most of them have known each other for years. I am expected to work and do as I am told, and while I am one to follow orders, I am not however one to be played as a fool. There is more to the IPAF then what they let on, but I am not sure what it is exactly our superiors are hiding. For the past month I have been doing some digging and have come up with little, that is where Leau comes in. For anything I do find, I turn to her for information.”

Anastasia coldly stared at Leau. “But it seems I need to ask some more specific and very intrusive questions in to her life as a Fey.” Turning to look over the others in the room and leaning forward, she added, “However, I'd like to leave questioning Leau for a later time. Right now, what I want is for you all to tell me what you know of in regards to both Fae and the IPAF and anything that you have not told me or are hiding from me. But if what you know is only what you have been told, then sit down and shut up. Then we will discuss what is going on, and what we are going to do about it.”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Leau Character Portrait: Anastasia Varias Character Portrait: Rorgen Avulstein Character Portrait: Kiser Nathaniel Burntwood Character Portrait: Jenson Xion Character Portrait: Alistair D. James
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Azriel



Azriel watched as the would be princess is thwarted by a fridge and chuckles lightly, taking it as a minor pay back for ordering him around. He was walking back toward the bedroom when she asked him his name so his voice was emitted from the room only to be followed shortly by him carrying a professionally made beautiful dress from across the street tailored to the girl's size. "My name is Azriel." His tone was short and to the point as if his name didn't matter in the least "Here, put this on while I make you some food, it is sure to be warmer than what you have on. I am no witch but I believe I may be able to create a little culinary magic if you'd wish." He chuckles lightly at his poorly made joke before setting the dress out for her and moving to the kitchen to begin cooking. As he had planned before he would make French toast and eggs with sausage and bacon. "Well assuming we do not find where you belong soon, you may stay here and decorate that room as you wish until you find yourself." He motioned idly toward the living room, not really caring about its appearance so much as its functionality.

It wouldn't take him long to make the simple yet delicious meal but while he was cooking he decided conversing would be best. "So tell me about this person you wish to find, he seems very important to you." His words where specifically placed to draw out the information he would need to find the man and get the girl talking at the same time. She had been thrust into a world of chaos and it would be healthy for her to reflect on something familiar. Though vague, it was still an anchor for her to hold onto. He seemed to flow about the kitchen with such grace it looked as if he was dancing half the time. He worked around her in such a way that she would never have to move to accommodate him no matter where she was standing in the kitchen. He seemed oddly more relaxed than his usual intense self while cooking. He would spin and slide around the kitchen as if it was his dance floor. On the edge of the table was a closed laptop which he would later use to begin searching for the man they quested for, for now however his focus was on making sure the girl was healthy enough to search. After a while music began to play from a surround sound system in the kitchen, the genre was unclear as it seemed every song fit into a different one. Between spins he motions to a small controller with three buttons on it that sat next to the laptop Back, Pause and Forward. "Press the button on the right if you don't like the song." (I'll let you decide what music she chooses to play) He smiled gently at the girl judging from what he had seen so far that she wouldn't know how to operate it without some minor instruction.



Jenson


(OOC: Jenson's post comes after Flickery's. We ninja'ed each other.)

Jenson had gotten the call to meet at the office like everyone else, unlike everyone else however he was no where near the base. Jenson had just recently finished his final 'Field Test' that would allow him to leave the lab and start actually doing work. With all the modifications and program glitches they had to work through just to get everything working right, Jenson was now a walking wonder. They now had him in the back of a Van moving toward the main base to start his service under one Anastasia Varias. The voice on the com must have been her second? That was a guess though, still he couldn't help but feel like he knew the voice. While he waited images flew up in front of him much like a computer in his brain. The images where invisible to anyone else because they where literally in his head, to him they appeared transparent so he could still see everything going on around him. He was going through the personnel files for the team he was supposed to be working for in the near future. Suddenly after fifteen minutes of bored flipping through random grunts in their unit he gets toward the higher ups. Without warning he jumped up in his seat and yelled "YETI!" The word startled his driver who swerved a little but managed to regain his control over the vehicle easily enough "What the hell is going on back there!" The driver called back frustrated "Its the Yeti! When the fuck did he leave the military!?" He reached up and tapped the device on his temple quickly before he yelled out over the open com link "YETI old boy you dressed?!" He chuckled heavily as he called out to his old military buddy Kiser.

Years ago they had been in deep jungle and Kiser had gone out to take a piss in the middle of the night without telling their watchmen. Kiser of course had decided there was no problem in going out stark naked with his gun since there was no one for miles. In the middle of the night their very green watchmen had caught a glimpse of him and remembering some fake horror story they told newbies about Yeti's being in the woods they where in, freaked out and started yelling about how there was a Yeti in the woods trying to get at them. That is until the spotlight was slammed on and turned on the rather startled Commander, since then he has never lived down the nickname from that unit. Kiser being the relaxed Commander he was never punished people for harmless fun so the name stuck. When no higher ups where around they started calling him Commander Big Foot.

Finally the van pulled up to the building and dropped him and another plain looking man off. They walk up to the wall casually and go through the sequence to get the door open, however when it came to the retina scan the thing errors out and Jenson starts cussing profusely about some dumb ass not writing in a back up access system. "My eyes are as good as paper to this damned thing." The other man stepped up and opened the door before they got into the elevator and took the 28.43 second ride down to the base. By the time they reached the bottom Jenson's head was bobbing to music no one else could hear. The other man departed from Jenson's company likely to go report to whatever department he belonged to. Jenson walked quickly through the hallways, his overlay highlighted people as he walked and popped up their names above their heads with a link to access their personnel records, at least whatever his pay grade would let him see. He slide through the door to Anastasia's office casually. The first thing he saw was the sparse walls and no nonsense attitude, his previous military experience telling him to look at those thing first to know how to act. He decided to go into military mode since she seemed the type. He steps out and then goes ridged with a military stance "Jenson Xion reporting for.... Fae!" in a flash a pistol appeared in his hand and beaded perfectly at Leau between the eyes, she would have been able to see into his barrel if she weren't standing across the room and behind Anastasia. He paused a moment however as his targeting system highlighted her green "Da fuck?.... Leau huh?..." the gun dropped back to his side as he started reading off his monitor, decidedly slaughtering the pronunciation of her name on accident " "Considered friendly"? haha they are real specific about you aren't they! No offence, just didn't know we had any friendly butterflies." He chuckled merrily as he slide the gun back into a leg holster that seems to blend in with his cloths almost perfectly, keeping the gun right at his hand height when his arm is relaxed. He then seems to remember where he was and popped back into a sloppily ridged position before saying "Oh uh right.. Reporting for duty.... I dunno, do we call you ma'am or sir? They liked sir in the military, but I dunno you might like Ma'am." He seemed to have lost his serious position, returning to a completely none formal stance as he went on a tangent, completely forgetting there where other people in the room. Under his left arm was a helmet that look odd to say the least. It had some sort of strip going all around it horizontally and looked like it would cover a person's entire head a lot like a bikers helmet would but without the clear visor. The thing would encase a person's head in protection but effectively make them blind. What strategic use it would be was completely unclear, but then in this room no one had noticed his eyes yet.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Leau Character Portrait: Anastasia Varias Character Portrait: Rorgen Avulstein Character Portrait: Kiser Nathaniel Burntwood Character Portrait: Jenson Xion
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"Dunkelzahn," Kiser called Zahn by her full name, causing her to raise an eyebrow. "You're not dead,"

"I was never in any danger..." she mumbled to herself, although she felt a little touched that the concern sounded genuine. Perhaps he wasn't all bad.

"Great. We won't have lesbian body parts to clean up," he joked. Zahn narrowed an amber eye into her scope, fuzzy feeling vanishing, and instead looking for him among the remaining soldiers.

"Meet us in the IPAF headquarters. Ana's big bad office."

"Roger," is what she transmitted before clicking him out of the conversation. "Yeah, we'll be meeting for certain."

"It's dead," Zahn chimed through the comm, punching the remains of team 102 into her comm. "Or maybe stunned... hopefully dead," she informed. It was hard to tell. It was hopefully dead, considering she shot it five times with .50 caliber rounds designed to kill people inside of tanks. "You guys should beat feet."

*Oh thank God, who is this?*

"Iceheart. You guys need to retreat," she informed, pulling the magazine of tungsten rounds towards her, thinking better of it, and pushing the magazine of normal .50 BMG into the rifle. She felt more than heard an additional presence next to her shortly afterwards, and flicked her amber eyes to the left to find Archer laying there with his spotting scope already set up. It was one of the reasons she liked him: he was actually good at his job... unlike certain werelions.

*We're holding position until the clean up crew arrives.*

"I am the clean up crew," she stated coldly, flipping the bolt up and slamming the first bullet into the chamber.

*What?? Uh, how far then?*

"How fast can you run?" Zahn asked glibly and heard Archer chuckle from her side. "What do you think, would you consider that facility compromised?"

"I think the gaping hole in the side with the giant ice thingy squirming in it is the giveaway, hun. Don't we have some kind of SOP for this?"

"Yup. Eliminate hostiles, retrieve any lost data... in the event hostiles can't be eliminated prevent further contamination of the site by entering the computer core, opening the shiny red envelope in my back pocket with the codes and initiate facility sterilization."

"Huh... so what is facility sterilization anyway? I didn't see a flamethrower in our bag," Archer asked.

"Buncha' thermite... and a big-ass bomb."

"Really? God damnit, my apartment is in an IPAF building," he sighed.

"Why do you think I'm never home?" She grinned. "How far is it?" She asked, and Archer traced her line of site to the gaping hole in the side of the lab.

"To the yummy soldier with the passenger?" Archer asked, and she could hear the grin in his voice.

"Ew. No. You read those smutty romance novels don't you?"

"I adore smutty romance novels. 1430 to the control panel," he informed, lasing the facility with his spotting scope. "That will get you through the secure door, your clearance should get you the rest of the way into the computer core. From there... well I imagine there's some kind of hokey count-down or something that should give you time to make your escape."

"That sounded like a guess," Zahn said, narrowing an amber eye at Archer.

"It was, but it was an educated guess," he said with a smirk. Zahn just blew a sigh and lined up her next shot. What was left of the IPAF team on the ground had hastily retreated. She took a moment to count the bodies and say a silent prayer... they'd taken more than 50% casualties and their remains would never be recovered. The ice titan was slowly getting up, in spite of having lost an arm and having a large hole blown out of its head. "Try aiming for its heart?"

"Yeah... I think its healing," she noted, watching the holes in its chest very slowly closing through her scope. Zahn rested her finger on the trigger, and then changed her mind after what felt like a long minute while the creature started to push itself to its feet. She pushed herself up and slid the rifle to Archer. "Ready to earn your pay?"

"... Wh-what?" He asked in that "oh-there-is-no-way" tone of voice.

"Cover me," she ordered, and started off... stopping only a few steps away and turning back. "And go easy on those tungsten rounds, they're like forty bucks apiece. The guys in the gunsmith lab always throw a fit when I use too many... Channel EC6... this just became classified," she said, and reached up to her headset and clicked a red button on the earpiece. Everyone still on her channel was immediately dumped with an earful of harsh static as her comms with Archer switched to a secure, encrypted channel. She was sure it was still monitored by... somebody... these "secure" comms always were. Whoever it was, it was above her pay grade. Zahn had a very steep rate for her services, so she imagined whoever else could listen in was at the top of the food chain..

1460 meters doesn't sound like very far until you have to run it. At just 149-ish meters shy of a mile, it was easily a six minute run for a highly athletic human. Zahn half fell, half slid down the fire escape to street level, landing harshly. She ignored the pain in her toes and ankles as she took off sprinting. It was a solid minute before she realized Archer didn't have a headset, and she'd just dumped everyone else and encrypted her comm... now she was in a channel by herself with whatever boogeymen the IPAF higher-ups had listening in.

"Don't suppose someone could air-drop my spotter a headset?" She grunted into the comm, feeling silly. She was starting to regret restricting Archer from the comms until he perfected his call-outs and could shoot straight. Zahn had insisted on training him when they'd been assigned together. Archer was just supposed to be her spotter, but since she was the only long distance marksman in the city she'd taken it upon herself. A sniper and a spotter were deadly on their own. A pair of snipers working in tandem was just cruel and unusual.

*Oh hey!* a voice rang in her ear after a while, causing her to jump a little as she ran.

"Archer?" She puffed, not bothering to run in cover, and instead making a mad-dash for the opening.

*Yeah I was gonna say something, you know like: 'wait, can I call your cell or something I don't have a headset' but you ran off so quick. No worries though, some hunk in a black suit showed up and brought me one.*

"Huh..." Zahn's gait faltered a little as she slowed to glance back at the rooftop with a spooked expression.

*You're gonna want to move leftish here in a sec.*

"What?" She slowed further, pressing the headset to her ear almost positive she'd misheard him, but movement in her peripheral vision caused her to snap her head up in time to dive out of way as a boulder-sized chunk of debris smashed into the concrete where she would have been standing had she kept moving. She landed roughly on her chest, driving snow down the neck of her thermal shirt and into her pants and boots. She spat snow from her mouth, scrambling to her feet and shambling to cover between a couple of buildings. Zahn pressed herself against the wall, breathing heavily, her ears ringing with adrenalin. She didn't even pause to catch her breath, instead she whipped out her sidearm and popped out of cover to snap off a couple of shots at the ice titan before returning.

*Oh now what the hell is that going to do?*

"I don't know! Wasting ammo! Makes me feel better! Should have sent you on this run!" she answered, nearly shouting. The adrenalin was still surging through every inch of her body, from having very nearly been crushed. Zahn had always been relatively safe in her nest during combat... not to say that she hadn't had some close calls, but none nearly as close as that!

*Alright I'm gonna take a shot and maybe buy you some time...*

"W-... WAIT!"

*Too late, it's on its way.*

Zahn immediately threw herself to the ground, this time feeling the wet chill of snow pressing against her skin between her breasts through the feverish adrenalin. She covered her head with her hands reflexively even though she knew the .50 caliber slug would punch straight through the building she was hiding behind. A second ticked by, though it felt like an age before she heard the chill snap of the slug screeching past and she opened her eyes in time to see it crush into the titan's good knee almost a second later, sending it crashing to the pavement as the joint was shattered like a cheap mirror. Another second ticked past and the deep throated POW of the Windrunner followed. For a moment she could only just blink... so that's what that felt like.

*I hit it!* Archer exclaimed, sounding genuinely surprised.

"On purpose?" Zahn asked with a note of incredulity.

*Sure... can I keep this headset after we're done?*

"I'm not leaving you in charge of a herd of cats," she grunted at him as she pushed herself to her feet again and sprinted out of cover for the opening.

Back on the rooftop, Archer took his eye away from the scope for a few moments, looking out over the distance with his regular sight. He pushed his glasses up on his nose and grinned as he scooted over to his spotting scope to watch Zahn cover the rest of the distance to the facility. A few long moments ticked by as he waited, making sure the titan wasn't going to get up again just yet. He reached up and muted his microphone.

"Was that really necessary?" A bald man in a black suit asked him.

"She made me do push-ups... payback is a bitch," he smirked, watching her vault over a fallen pillar and vanish inside. He whistled in appreciation of the view.

"Aren't you gay?" the man asked, raising an eyebrow.

"Just means I can appreciate a great ass when I see one. She really rocks those cargoes. The truth is, I wouldn't kick her out of my bed for eating crackers... even if 'crackers' was my dog," he informed with a wide grin. The man didn't reply, and instead just shook his head a little without changing his expression.

*I'm inside and through the security door,* Zahn chimed in his ear after what felt like too long. Archer reached up and unmuted his headset.

"Alright, once you're into the main facility you're on your own: the place is probably shielded all out of Star-Trek and shit. The other labs have informative signs and colored tape on the ground for you to follow, I imagine this one is no different. Once you're in the core the console you're after will be on your..." Archer hesitated, glancing up at the man in the black suit. He waved his right hand after undoubtedly rolling his eyes behind those dark sunglasses. "Right side, it probably has red and white striped tape all over it."

*That sounded like another guess...*

"An educated one," Archer smiled, and the headset popped in his ear, signifying that he'd lost Zahn's signal.

Archer sat up indian style and propped himself up with his hands, gazing out over the rooftop in the direction of the facility in silence while the man in the black suit did the same. It felt like an hour passed, but after a handful of minutes the facility went up in a bright orange flash. Archer leaned forward and peered through the spotting scope. The ice titan had finally been reduced into enough molecules to cease being a threat. All that was left of the surface facility was a burned out husk and a pile of rubble.

"Did she make it out?" Asked the man in a neutral tone. After a moment of silence, Archer's pocket began to vibrate. He pulled out his phone and checked it, then flipped the screen towards the man. Don't get your hopes up, I made it out. Pack to the dead drop, read the text on his screen. Seemingly satisfied, the man turned and exited through the roof access door. Archer leaned back, looking up at the sky, which had finally begun to clear up and let sunlight through. He sat for a long time before starting to pack up... and before he was finished, a chime sounded from one of his cargo pockets: an email notification from his other phone. He just smiled.

It was a long jog through the underground which Zahn took all the way to the IPAF headquarters. Zahn had escaped through the sub-levels of the facility, which were still intact. She allowed the biometric device to scan her retina, and scowled at it when it addressed her as "Julia Smith," but pushed her way inside anyway. She'd been after the guys in IT to fix that for weeks now. It was a brisk walk to Ana's office, which she poked her head in momentarily, looking for one person in particular, most of the other regulars were there. Her eyes narrowed and she shut the door, knowing where Kiser would be if they'd taken a new prisoner. She slid her hand into her pocket as she made her way to containment. Zahn was a ghost as soon as the door opened for her. She flitted down the hallway in and out of camera blind spots until she found what she was looking for: Kiser standing over the waking body of a Fae. She sidled up behind him, gripping an object in her pocket.

"Hey," she whispered, almost in his ear. She was already pulling her hand out of her pocket, fingers curled around a set of polished brass knuckles as she cocked her arm back and swiveled on her hips. When he turned to face her, she drove her fist straight into his face with every ounce of her strength.

"Don't you EVER leave a soldier behind again!" she spat, shaking with rage. Her right hand was shaking and covered in blood where the brass knuckles had dug into her flesh. Zahn had literally hit him so hard that she'd broken four of her fingers. "If you had radioed ahead like you're FUCKING SUPPOSED TO I could have been in position to cover you BEFORE things went sideways! Maybe then those soldiers wouldn't have had to die so that your worthless ass could escape!" she very nearly screamed, and managed to resist striking him again. Zahn took a deep breath and seemed to settle back into her persona as "Iceheart."

"I have a silver bullet with your name on it, Kiser, and if you ever try a stunt like that again it will find you," she threatened coldly and then spun on her heels, walking straight out. Now and then blood spattered the floor along her trail both from her shattered hand and from where she'd been clutching her opposite fist hard enough for her nails to dig into her flesh. Zahn slid the brass knuckles back into her pocket as she sidled silently into Anastasia's office to catch the rest of the meeting. She didn't bother hiding her broken and bloodied hand... her healing factor wasn't as strong as a full blown were, but the damage would heal over the next day or so. Zahn was in time to hear Rorgen mention visiting the 86B facility before the clean-up crew arrived. She kept a neutral face, sitting down without saying anything: it was classified, and if they didn't already know about the lower levels, then they didn't have the proper clearances. A wave of exhaustion washed over her as the last of her adrenalin ebbed away and she covered her mouth with her hand to hide a yawn, then continued to listen in silence. She didn't envy the minion that would get stuck with the paperwork over the entire fiasco and was just glad that she'd already submitted her report via email. Smart-phones were amazing nowadays...

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Azriel De'mourn Character Portrait: Tiggy The Summer Fae Character Portrait: Raena Character Portrait: Iokul Frosti Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Kiser Nathaniel Burntwood Character Portrait: Orpheus
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#, as written by Layla
Image

It was neither gradual nor gentle, being as if her foot had been placed over a land mine and then abruptly torn from it. The walls of her skull shook and trembled as an essence of the Queen rushed into her empty shell, tearing apart the seams that had held it apart. Raena found herself lying on the floor, staring at a bleak ceiling with its glaring lights. She must've fallen in her abrupt session of remembering. The High Queen did not squint against the light, why would she when it was so... Beneath her. She did, however, narrow her gaze at the dark haired man nearby. She grunted, bloody hell.

"Well, get on with it. State your name and... Whatever you are," she said with a frown, her head still pressed against the floor, her hair a ripple of white like a halo surrounding her head. "A wingless, two legged creature with a strange head," she mumbled. "It is neither a unicorn nor a Fey. A tortoise?" The turtles of the Faerie Realms walked on two legs and had a head - that was close enough. Right?

"My name is Azriel," he said.

"Azriel," she said his name slowly, as if forming human words was still a mystery to her. "Azriel," she repeated in her soft, sugared voice. "Hmph. Pretty," she said curtly.

Raena stood gingerly, although rising with an unnatural grace as she pressed her fingers to her temples. In the name of herself, this place was disorientating. Raena leaned against the kitchen counter, pursing her lips in distaste as she began at the man's crown, her eyes slowly drifting to his toes and rising once again to meet his eyes. "Immortal, wingless, but not a unicorn. A rock?" she mused, pushing away from the counter and gliding towards his cabinets. She pulled open a door, pulling out a mug and hanging it on the tip of her little finger. "Your goblets lack intricacy." Her finger traced the rim of the mug and a soft, observant, "Mmmm," hummed through her throat as she placed the mug by the sink.

"So tell me about this person you wish to find, he seems very important to you," Azriel said.

Raena was captivated by what he was doing with the equipment in the kitchen. He seemed to be cooking some strange things that smelled... Weird. He was gliding and spinning around her as if they were in a ballroom, but they were not, were they? Perhaps this was merely a freakishly small ballroom. Raena blinked up at him, captivated by the way his muscles rippled beneath his shirt as he moved with a quiet elegance. "I don't know," she said in reply. "He has skin like... Shadows," she began, holding her hand in front of her and stretching out her fingers as if fascinated by her own hand. "Eyes like stars. Perfect, but hideous in a way that made hideousness beautiful," she said quietly. "Mine."

"Press the button on the right if you don't like the song." Raena blinked the scattered thoughts away, looking at the small rectangular cube he was pointing to. She looked at it in puzzlement, shrinking at the sound that had filled the kitchen.

"We are never, ever, ever, getting back together!" Raena frowned - how could they know? Were they Seers, able to see the future? She gingerly pressed the right button, jumping slightly as the music changed.

"Before you came into my life, I missed you so bad," the speakers sang. What?

"I want you to shake my booty, I want you to shake my booty!" Next.

"There's a piece of lead where my heart should beat
Doctor said "Too dangerous to reap
You'd better just leave it be"
Body grew back around it, a miracle, praise be
Now, if only I could get through airport security"

Raena stood still, her finger lingering over the next button as she stared at Azriel's laptop. The voice, it was... Familiar. Liquid crystals spilled from the skies, mingling with obsidian rivers and shattering into a voice - his voice. "Who is this?" she asked.

"You cared for me," she said curtly after a pause, as way of thanks. Raena paused, lifting her shirt to her lips and biting into the cloth. It wasn't edible. "Hmph," she huffed, dropping the shirt and curling her hand around the handle of the door. "I am removing the wall," she announced as she twisted the knob and pulled the door open. Raena sashayed down a hallway but stilled as she spotted a ravishing gown on a not so ravishing creature. "Female," she called, ushering the woman toward her. The stranger looked at Raena with utter confusion, looking over her shoulder before reluctantly walking towards the half-clad Queen of Order. "Who is your tailor?" Raena asked, eyeing the dress as if she were considering ripping it off the girl's body.

"Umm... What?" the woman mumbled, her eyes darting left and right.

"Who fashions your garments?" Raena rephrased.

"Uh... Forever 21...?"

"Brilliant. You are dismissed," Raena said with a wave of her hand and a toss of her silky white hair. The High Queen lifted her chin and sashayed down the hallway, pressing the elevator button as if she were performing a holy ritual. "This is an elevator," she told Azriel. "It goes up and down."

"I summon this Earthling, Forever 21," she announced as she stepped out of the elevator after staring at the crack that separated the elevator from the floor on the other for several long moments. "He will fashion me a gown. This garment of yours is not very warm," she told the Vampire as if he alone was responsible for the warmth of clothing. The Queen's first step outside of the building was much worse than a shock. She stilled, narrowing her gaze at the blanket of white that coated the world. The first thing she noticed, however, was not that she was bloody freezing, but that their horses were flat or fat, or both, and metallic? The second thing she noticed was how... Colourless everything was. Their ground were made with a strange, grey brick and their skies had no rivers, their trees, no eyes.

A whistle was blown, causing the Queen to jump back in surprise. "Hey, hey, babe! You are one fine motherfucker!" called a man as his other male comrades slapped him on the back as they barked unusual sounds. Why had they slapped him? Were they not friends? And what was -

"A motherfooka?" she repeated in puzzlement, looking at Azriel incredulously. "Your people are quite eccentric. What is a 'motherfooka?' Strange, very strange," she mumbled, continuing on her merry way, despite having no clue where she was going. She was the Queen, the world and its inhabitants would shift for her. Although the structures here seemed quite rude, she had to take a step away from straight just to avoid an uneducated pole with three circles and changing colours. She'd gotten a few more uncalled for, "Hey babeh washyouh naym"'s which she did not get at all. But what was the weirdest of all was the one man who'd said, "Yo baby, you be my Dairy Queen, I'll be your Burger King. You treat me right and I'll do it your way right away."

"Is he the king of this foreign world?" she'd asked Azriel. "King Burger? But what is dairy and why did he call me his child? Is he my father?"

Raena stopped in her tracks, glaring at a building for not moving out of her way before tilting her head to the side and blinking her large powder blue eyes. "Forever 21 has yet to arrive."

Image

Kiser sniffed Zahn out long before she'd come close to him but he decided not to react. What was the point? "Hey," she whispered in his ear. He sighed as she swung her brass knuckle covered fist back and winced as it connected with his chin and smacked his head aside. Ouch. That surprisingly hurt. "Don't you EVER leave a soldier behind again!"

"Not bad for a girl punch," he joked, rubbing his bloody chin and split lip. Kiser grinned, holding up both hands in a gesture of peace. "Okay, okay. I deserved that." Zahn went on to threaten him, a threat he didn't pay much attention to as he'd already turned his body to the Fey before him. The brutal wounds on his face inflicted by the sulking, serious, brooding Dunkelzahn was already healing, becoming a mere bruise on his face. He didn't care about the soldiers of IPAF. They did what they had to and knew full well the consequences and dangers they were enlisting for, years of work on the field when he'd been with the military had hardened him, desensitised him to the prospect of death. Jenson only reminded him of it. He'd been a Commander and so, so many of his soldiers had died, there was no longer any point in caring or even learning to know their names. He'd been rather fond of Jenson, though, and he'd never admit it but he found that their nickname for him - Yeti - had grown on him.

Image

"In the name of the Queen, where have you been?" Tiggy gushed. Orpheus pressed a pianist worthy finger over her lips, closing his eyes and cocking his head as if listening to the wind, although, that was all just for dramatic effect.

"Shh," he whispered. "Do not use the Queen's name in vain." Orpheus opened his eyes, a grin lighting his flawless features. "Nice to see you, too, Tiggy Stardust."

"Where have you been?" the Summer Fey continued. Orpheus arched a brow - a gesture almost no other Fey used due to how beneath them it was, but Orpheus quite liked these human expressions. They were rather... Expressive. The Oracle of Darkness gestured toward a billboard with his perfect face upon it, his intense pools of azure staring through the camera at all who laid eyes on his photograph. God, he was sexy. 'Sacrilegious' was written by his name, it was the name of the band he'd somehow joined without remembering doing so. They were famous now, apparently, and he was their lead singer and guitarist. Well, as long as it paid for his drinks and ravishing mansion.

"Looks like you haven't been keeping up with the tabloids and Earthling music, little one," he mused. As if to prove his point, a crowd of teenage girls raced towards him; Orpheus beamed, gracing them with his heart-shattering smile. The girls seemed to melt in the steps as they surrounded him, shoving Tiggy aside as they did. "Girls, girls. I am quite busy," he teased, reaching through them and grabbing Tiggy's wrist, pulling her to his side and lazily hanging an arm around her shoulders. "Although, I'm absolutely free tonight," he said with a wink. The girls giggled - predictable - as he quickly signed whatever objects they handed him. After much convincing - or not, since he was fantastic at making people do as he wished - they finally went away. Orpheus chuckled, before his face fell abruptly into a frown.

"As we were saying, where did you see this maybe-Rae? Did you see where she went? And why are you referring to yourself in third person? Where is the blue-skinned killer? What's his name? Praxis."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Leau Character Portrait: Anastasia Varias Character Portrait: Rorgen Avulstein Character Portrait: Kiser Nathaniel Burntwood Character Portrait: Alistair D. James
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#, as written by Lenyx
"God, you're cute," Anastasia heard Kiser say under his breath, while giving her a dashing smile. "Well, I know nothing that you don't tell me so see you tonight, Ciao, guys." Kiser pressed two fingers to his forehead and jerked them outwards.

Anastasia could only glare coldly at his back, she hoped he could feel the imaginary ice daggers she was driving into him. When Rorgen spoke up, pulling her gaze to him.

"Remind me to buy you some catnip for the coming holidays, Ana." Rorgen said seemingly amused.

Anastasia's icy glare returned, this time focused on Rorgen.

"Well, You already know what I could tell you about the IPAF. But. I bet you ten bucks we'd find something in that Lab 86b that just got shut down. I've only been up to the seventy series, even authorized research personnel weren't allowed in the ones that were eighty and above. They had to have special permission granted. And now security is at an all time low. It's the best time to get in there. But we can't access their data remotely, have to be there to do it. Try and look into their local files manually with this and pull something out, before the cleanup crew arrives." Rorgen gestured towards Alistair, "And if Alistair could come along."

Anastasia let her glare fade as she nodded in agreement. “Leau and I will come along. Dunkelzahn, glad you could join us. First aid kit, washroom.” Anastasia pointed to a door on the eastern wall near the filing cabinet. “Bandage up that hand before you get blood all over my carpet.”

As she stood up from her chair the phone on her desk beeped, and Anastasia pushed a button, putting the call on s everyone could hear. “Speak.”

“Well, uhm Ma'am. You see the clean-up crew for Lab86B, was Dunkelzahn and well uhm, Ma--” The feminine voice on the other end squeaked.

“Get to the point.” Anastasia growled.

“She blew it up Ma'am. There isn't much le-”

“God damn it.Dunkelzahn what the hell were you thinking?” Anastasia snapped. “Clean-up! Not blow up!”

Turning her attention back to the woman on the other end of the phone, Anastasia snapped at her too. “Get my car ready. Leau and I will be heading there for damage control, along with Rorgen and Alistair.”

Clicking the call off, Anastasia muttered to herself. “Can't anyone here not cause me any grief and just listen and obey orders?” Taking off her glasses and pinching the bridge of her nose she addressed Rorgen. “Rorgen, you and Alistair take your car. Leau and I will meet you there. Leau let's go. Now.”

With that Anastasia strode to the door, but stopped and turned around to face the team of people in her office. “Dunkelzahn, do not blow anything up while I am gone. And as to what I know, I know that the Fae that are captured, are kept. Locked in cages, and I want to know why we are keeping them. Until I find that out, all I can do is theorize with the bits of information I have acquired and that I have received from Leau regarding Fae life and magic. I think there is experimentation going on, and personally, I don't like that idea.”

With that Anastasia swept out of her office without another word along with Leau following silently behind her. Together the two headed out in to the winter wonderland of New York, where a man standing outside a black, sleek, Lamborghini Reventon waited. With a quick nod he opened the door for Anastasia, and once she was seated inside, he closed the door. As Anastasia started the car, Leau got in the passenger seat. “Leau. Seat-belt.”

Wordlessly Leau pulled her seat belt over her chest and clicked the buckle in place, securing her safely in the car. Together they drove in silence, until Leau spoke up rather abruptly right around the area where Anastasia and Rorgen had hit the Fey earlier. “Stop the car.”

“I beg your pardon Leau? No. I will not stop the car. We need to get to-”

“Stop the car now!” Leau shouted as she removed her seat belt and threw herself towards the steering wheel, grabbing it with both hands and turning it sharply. Anastasia pushed down on the break as the car started to spin, and stopped only after almost making a complete circle.

Leau glanced at Anastasia sharply, but sharply turned her head away again. "No time. None left," she said. With the sound of a soft breeze and a tree rustling in the wind, she seemed to dissolve from position beside Anastasia.

“Leau what in the bloody hell are you-” Anastasia started to scream at Leau, but Leau was gone.

Anastasia was left stunned and confused. Trying to start the car to go in search of Leau, she found it wouldn't start. “What in God's name...” She didn't know what to do, she knew nothing about cars except how to drive them. So she called the only person she could. Picking up her phone she stabbed at the numbers as she dialed, she knew the number by heart.

She slipped the phone to her ear as she pulled off her glasses and tossed them on the dashboard. “Kiser, you better check your damn messages. My car won't start. Leau grabbed the wheel and I lost control of the car. Now she's gone and I'm stranded. I'm where we hit that damned Fey.” Anastasia hated to say it, but she knew Kiser most likely would shrug her off if she didn't, so through gritted teeth she did the last thing she ever wanted to do in her life. “I need you. I need your help. Please.”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Anastasia Varias Character Portrait: Rorgen Avulstein Character Portrait: Kiser Nathaniel Burntwood Character Portrait: Alistair D. James
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Alistair D. James


Alistair listened seriously to Anastasia's words. He didn't like the fact that IPAF might be keeping something big, and especially from Anastasia, the leader of the NYC district. He had never questioned the authority he worked under before, but this was serious.

He shrugged. "Isn't there some digging you could do on your own? Should we even be trusting Leau at this point?" Similar thoughts ran through his mind, but he said nothing, being the quiet person he always was. Speaking his mind at this time would do nothing. Besides, Anastasia had specifically ordered it, and he was never one to defy orders, especially not from Anastasia.

Just then, Kiser passed him, slapping him on the back. Involuntarily, Alistair shook him off - he hated being touched. And Kiser - there was just something about him that Alistair didn't trust. He was no supernatural, being only human - but Kiser gave him the creeps. And when something gave Alistair the creeps, you'd better watch out - Alistair was a stolid person and didn't get the creeps easily.

Listening to Rorgen, Alistair unconsciously smoothed his suit, a common habit of his. It was like Tourette's Syndrome; every movement couldn't be controlled. He thought of Elena, who would probably come home late, having yet another date with that Steven. Alistair missed the old Elena, ever since Steven came along, it was Steven this and Steven that, whatever Steven thought about everything and anything would be inserted into any conversation they were having. Alistair didn't like it.

"And if Alistair could come along." Alistair jerked out of his reverie, processing Rorgen's words. He nodded wordlessly, noting Zahn striding in. Zahn - well, Zahn being Zahn, she had that look of 'you can't make me do what I don't want to do', and was very surly, as always.

Anastasia's phone beeped, and the nervous person on the other end spoke. "Well, uhm, Ma'am. You see, the cleanup crew for Lab 86B was Dunkelzahn, and, well, uhm..." Alistair rolled his eyes. "Get it out, woman," he muttered under his breath. Apparently Anastasia thought the same way, for she snapped at the timid lady. "Get to the point."

"She blew it up, Ma'am. There isn't much left - " Alistair leapt to his feet, angered. "You - blew up - " he sputtered, but fortunately his words were masked by Anastasia yelling at Dunkelzahn. For once, Alistair felt like yelling too - how would they explain this to the public? "I'm sorry, but you see, we had to cause a massive explosion in public to destroy a monster that would probably have killed all of you, you should be thanking us instead of blaming us." Obviously not.

"Leau and I will be heading there for damage control, along with Rorgen and Alistair." "Yes, ma'am," Alistair saluted her smartly and turned to Rorgen. "Shall we go, then?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Leau Character Portrait: Anastasia Varias Character Portrait: Rorgen Avulstein Character Portrait: Alistair D. James
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There was a long pause between Anastasia's exclaimation and the first thing he said. "Good work, zahn." When it came to Rorgen, sometimes you could not tell whether he was being his usual sacarstic self or actually praising here.

He actually liked the woman's style of work, 'When in doubt, go all out'. When it came to dealing with the spernatural, one could never be too careful. One stray and everything could be lost, as the inevitable years of experience had told him. As long as she evacuated the other IPAF agents before it happened, he was fine with it and he was sure she would have.


Anastasia returned to the phone, giving out orders to get ready to go out. The smell of blood wafted to his nose like a pungent odor, not the sweet-jam fragrance of Fey blood and the intoxicating effect it had on some people, but the metallic sting of blood. Human blood. He could not help but associate lesbians with punching everything, he briefly busied himself wondering who was the outstanding fellow who landed her.

Until Anastasia put down the phone and pinched the bridge of her noise like she always did.


"Rorgen, you and Alistair take your car. Leau and I will meet you there. Leau. Go now!"


He cranked his head sideways when she said to go in pairs in a Sure. kind of manner, though it also meant that she was coming along too. Rorgen did not like putting Anastasia in any danger, though she often demanded it herself. Knowing that her position did not afford her much choice.


"Shall we go then?"


Rorgen arched his brows up in a reversed blink, turning to look, there stood Alistair always such a gentleman. It was a refreshing sight in a place where everyone swore like sailors all day, he himself included. If the man ever had a crease out of place or temper ever lost, then Rorgen had yet to see it.

He waited for Alistair to exit first, taking up on his offer, then closed the door behind.




The outside was bustling with life, a stark contrast to the quiet mediance of the office not just a few inches away. Jacketted men and women scrolled through sheets of paper, picking up phone calls and relaying messages undre flourescent lights. He recognized a few of them, with their eyes perpetually looking downwards, but they were busy.

Rorgen reached out and with quick fingers, warily grabbed a communicator off a working android's head as Alistair was walking. "Borrowing this!" He voiced loudly to no one in particular, taking faster than usual steps back into the semblance of a walkway void of people -the lycanthrope did not trust the damned things. Too much action, too little thought. He mused. There was no way anyone could tell what they were thinking. The machine seemed confused for only a moment, which he took to quickly turn around, then resumed it's beeping processes like nothing happened.

When he disappeared far enough ahead of Alistair, he plugged in the device to his ear and a clear blue V.I (Virtual Visual Image) screen blinked into existence before his right eye. Created through Light Induction Diodes that bent the surrounding light into percievable objects, in this case a flickering baritone sound-wave bar. Technology had progressed rapidly during the last few years, especially when the world came to learn of Semi-humans.


"Rorgen. R. Avulstein." He said in a low voice, initiating it's recognition systems.


Sometimes he felt like he missed an important part of history and was still living in the past, it was likely because of the one year coma he had. How quickly did things change.

"Sux." Rorgen muttered as he reached the door, looking downwards at himself, he didn't even get a change of clothes.



--------The IPAF Headquarters Carpark-------




It was not long before they came to the underground carpark underneath the Hotel Pensylvania, reserved only for IPAF Agents -not that civillians would find their way down here. The organization had a thing for being underground, twice he had stepped out of that lift today.

As they neared the car, now stained and slightly dented, he detoured to it's rear and unlocked the trunk of the vehicle. Inside was a cleverly hidden stylized briefcase, chrome in colour, that acted like an ingeniously placed mirror for emergencies and breakdowns, as it fit snugly into tight concave compartment in the backboard.

Taking it and a few other things and throwing them in the backseat, Rorgen slung himself into the driver's seat electronically opening the door for Alistair.


"P'rdon the mess. Dead fae was in here. I'll pay a vamp to lick it clean or something later." He was very open about his racism and started driving down the lonely lane once the agent got in.


"There are Gears and stuff in there," He said non-chalantly, indirectly offering Alistair to take what he needed as he barely touched the steering wheel with one hand and started pulling the shirt from his heavily muscled anatomy. They were still driving in a secluded area so it was not much of a danger. But Rorgen lacked the exhibitionist qualities of Kiser and quickly put on a bulletproof vest, multi-tasking the chore of gearing up.


"You still carry that silver pistol?" He asked Alistair, not particularly enthusiatic about the answer. But the young agent was well-known for several things, one included the use of bullets that were meant to kill Weres.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Azriel De'mourn Character Portrait: Raena Character Portrait: Justin Maysharp Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Jenson Xion
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Azriel De'mourn



Azriel finished the meal just about the time the girl decided to wander off again, this time wearing nothing but his shirt... how odd. He looked down at the meal he had prepared and sighed lightly leaving it on the kitchen counter. He had no time to properly store it and he couldn't eat it, so it would have to be cleaned up when he manages to wrangle the girl to safety again, honestly he was beginning to question his sanity with how far he was going to keep her safe. On his way out he grabs one of his jackets, knowing the girl had already forgotten about the cold. She seemed to be forgetting things constantly at this point which pointed toward some form of brain damage, if she kept up like this he would have to take her to a hospital to make sure she wasn't brain scrambled. Not knowing what things are or mean is normal. Forgetting things you have just learned on a regular basis however was a whole other ball game. He wouldn't be surprised to find a fracture in her skull somewhere. Before he even hit the door, his cell was in his hand and a text message was sent. He returned it before he exited so as to not further confuse the girl, cell phones could wait for another day.

He took the time to lock his door before he followed her down the stairs, having missed the interaction between her and the random girl from the building. As she turned to ask about the cat calls he shook his head lightly "Disgusting and poor attempts at a creative way to attract a mate. Dairy Queen and Burger King are food establishments. Another poor attempt to be creative while attracting a mate. Also they believe by calling you 'baby' you will feel some familiarity to them and improve their chances of attracting you.... To be honest I'm not sure how that one started..." Just then a black car pulled up next to them on the street, despite them having walked a ways already the man inside seemed to know how to find them. It parked just next to them before the man got out and walked around the car to Azriel, handed him the keys and accepted a rather generous tip from the vampire before running back toward the building they had just come from. He turned to usher the girl into the car when she began to fall.

Something in his stomach turned. It felt as if his last love was being ripped from him again, but vague and blurred somewhere deep in the back of his mind where he couldn't pull it up for study. The feeling made him move however as his body seemed to disappear to the humans around him, it reappeared with his arms under the girl, having caught her well before she hit the ground "Are you okay my...." He caught himself before he spoke the last word, what was he going to call her? Queen? Love? Neither made sense.... why would he do that? It seemed almost as if a reflex but he had never met this girl in his life before this. His emotions where getting the best of him and he needed to get them under control. He stood lifting the girl and setting her in the passenger seat "You are weak, and need food. Afterword I will take you to Forever 21, it is a place that sells cloths. Please be patient. It will take time for you to remember everything." His voice held a large amount of concern for the girl as he took to buckling her seat belt for her "This will keep you from sliding around while we drive, you may take it off with this button." He directs her attention to the little red button that would release the belt. With another flash of speed he closed the door and was in the drivers seat of the car. Heat poured from the dash of the vehicle as he began driving "What would you like to eat?" He figured she might reflexively know what she was hungry for. He would be sure to get fast food as she didn't seem to have much in the way for patience.

In the back of his mind Azriel was now battling himself, he couldn't figure out why he would have called her queen or love. Yes there was the poorly made pick up line that called her queen but before that he had no reason to address her that way. Adding that to the fact that she acted like royalty sporadically and you come up with something being very wrong. Azriel couldn't puzzle it out, a fact that bothered him to no end. Who was this girl?



Jenson Xion




With no one paying attention to the curious trouble maker, Jenson did what anyone would do when left in their boss' office with no one to watch him. He started going through her stuff. First through her desk, mumbling lightly to himself "Bill...memo....gun...OOO Candy!" He popped a piece of the sugary goodness in his mouth before he closed the drawer and turned to look about the room. He went to open the filing cabinet and found it to be locked. He made a mental note to come back to it when he had more time to pick the lock. He sighed lightly as he moved over to a small book shelf and started to flip through the titles "Manual...Manual... Dictionary... Sex book?" He picked it up an flipped through the pages quickly "Nope, manual." He placed it back and stood back up looking at the sparse room, he had the feeling it had to hide some form of secret. His eyes returned to the locked cabinet, glaring at it as if he would unlock it with his mind. Being the mischief maker he was, he had a set of lock picks in his pocket. He also knew another of the IPAF was in the other room bandaging up a broken hand and he wouldn't have time to unlock it without getting caught. So naturally he did what any ADHD fifteen year old would do. He went and got more candy from the drawer.

To pass the time he started to flip through his different visual settings and looking around the room, as if he would discover some hidden secret to this box of a room. It seemed to bother him greatly that this woman who was practically demanding more knowledge didn't have much of anything in her room. Maybe her people didn't talk to her because she was so cold and shut off. He munched on another piece of chocolate and slide himself up onto the boss lady's desk. One of his hands reached into a side pocket on his pants and pull out a rolled up cloth. He unrolled it in his lap then reaches for one of his pistols. Within seconds the heavily modified weapon was stripped down to its bare parts. He then looked at the parts closely as if trying to decide if they needed cleaning or if it would simply fall under excessive maintenance. Finally deciding they where clean enough, his hands glide over the parts to produce a hand gun again and return it to its holster before repeating the process with his other weapon. Unfortunately for him they where both clean enough that any maintenance would simply cause microscopic damage that would reduce the life span of the weapons. With his weapons fully reassembled he would start surfing the internet in his head to pass the time.

Setting

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Character Portrait: Praxis Lethe Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Jenson Xion
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She was flying. Soaring high over the roads of some land she didn't recognize. There was a highway below her, and occasionally a car would slowly slide by beneath her. Zahn figured she wasn't in some land far far away, just in some state she'd never been in before. That's not what was important... she was flying! She gave a shrill cry, reveled in the way the wind blew through her feathers and made a lazy barrel because she could. Some erratic movement caught her eye far below, and she couldn't help herself. Driven by some hidden desire she folded her wings and plummeted silently towards the Earth at some insane speed, narrowly missing a branch as she bolted through the treeline. Her wings snapped open at the last second and she flapped once, lowering her talons and violently snatching a hare from the ground before arcing back out of the trees and settling into a soaring pattern to find a place to eat.

A place to eat her dinner...

BVVVVV... BVVVVVV.... Her chest was vibrating in an odd repeating pattern, and suddenly the hare twisted in her grip to gaze up at her, whipped out a tiny electric guitar and began to wail out a driving beat. It began to sing:

The nightingale in a golden cage
That's me locked inside reality's maze
Can't someone make my heavy heart light?
Come undone
Bring me back to life


Zahn woke up, blinking blearily into the harsh fluorescent lights of the infirmary. Her right hand was ice cold, and a glance reminded her that she'd wrapped it and put it under ice, though now the ice had melted and it was just submerged beneath cold water. She lifted it and flexed warmth back into it gingerly. She raised an eyebrow when she noticed that the bones had healed, and though her her fingers ached and were a sickly black color she could definitely move them.

A nightingale in a golden cage
That's me locked inside reality's maze
Can't someone make my heavy heart light?
It all starts with a lullaby


Her phone continued to sing at her. She pulled it out of her bra and sat up with zombie-like vigor to look at the screen. It was Archer.

"Ugh, what," she grunted after accepting the call.

"Morning to you too sunshine, did I interrupt your nap or something?" He asked.

"Actually..."

"Nevermind, can you pick me up? I have a thing... and your things, figured you might want to take them to the lab like you usually do so I hung on to the gear instead of taking it to the dead drop. But I have a thing... and you have a car, so you should come pick me up," he explained. She grunted at him.

"Sure. It'll be a few."

"I've been meaning to ask you... don't sharpshooters usually maintain their own equipment?"

"Usually, yes," she answered as she pushed herself to her feet. "But the powers that be decided to gift me with an entire team of people who's sole purpose is to maintain our equipment and invent new bullets for us to put into Fae. I'm sure they'd be dreadfully bored if I didn't visit them so often," she grinned a bit pulling her leather jacket off the bed and sliding it on. She flipped her hair out of the collar and let it tumble down her back as she rounded the corner and joined the general bustle in the hallway.

It was a short walk while she made small talk with Archer as she rounded another corner, hardly paying anyone mind... not that that wasn't normal, she did flash a warm smile at some of the men who passed which illicited some surprised glances. Zahn was still blissfully high from the painkillers the doc had given her on top of what she'd already taken... pleasantly glowing is how she might be described at the moment. And glow she did, right by Anastasia's office which was on the way to the underground garage, where she was stopped in her tracks by some guy blubbering about Fae loose in the facility.

"Get Leau. Where the hell is she?" a familiar voice asked from inside the door. "And Anastasia. Kiser, too. Alistair. Zahn. Zahn's a decent shot."

"The only decent shot," she chimed, poking her head in through the door. "Ravenna..." she acknowledged with an air of intrigue, the corners of her full lips twisting into a sly grin... she bit her lower lip and cleared her throat with a subtle note of embarrassment. She really must stop wandering the facility corridors while high. "Leau left with the director and Alistair to investigate the... ah... remains of lab 86B and last I saw Kiser was in the holding area with..." she paused, looking at the fae that was strapped to the chair underneath Ravenna. "Him, with his face punched in," she finished, holding up her blackened hand. She ran her fingers through her hair with a sigh.

"I'll get Mary..." she nodded to Ravenna, then pressed the phone back to her ear. "You may want to take the bus, Archer. I have a thing..."

Setting

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Character Portrait: Praxis Lethe Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Aerunia of the Reverie
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He never would get used to taking orders from those younger than him, especially when the only person he was obligated to listen to was his queen. It was only natural for him to imminently disobey the woman, his head turning to examine the room around him. The iron chair was a problem, it burned against his skin, but wouldn't completely cripple him. However, it would prevent him from pulling off fancy, flashy tricks. Still, he was confident in his ability to get out of this situation, he just had to wait for the right moment, that's all. Praxis was torn away from his thoughts by the woman's harsh grip on him, her eyes burning like fire, her rage radiating off her form and resounding on his heart. His lips turned upwards, he too was familiar with that kind of emotion.

She kept on talking, moving, the twists and turns in her body fascinating. How very human, she was a specimen that he would have enjoyed to learn more about, under different circumstances. As iron coated pens dug into his hands, he did not change his visage of composure, his expression not once being ruptured even if pain shot through his spine. He was prepared for torture, they would have to do better than this to get scream from him. "There's no need to be so violent, lest you make yourselves to be the villains. I thought humans valued righteousness?" The knowing smile returned to his lips, his eyelids covering his eyes for a second too long. "You're not like them, though." He exhaled, hoping that some of the agony would escape into the air with his stale oxygen.

The words he wanted to say were cut off, another fire burned nearby, and joy and relief grew inside of his chest. Aerunia, his reverie had come to find him. A chuckled came from his throat, perhaps it was fate that they meet again like this, if only he was in a stronger state to ensure her safety. "I want the same thing as you." He told the woman, reaching out for the little power he had left, before it was drained away by iron shackles. "It's unfortunate we're on separate sides." Praxis could tell them everything he knew, explain the situation, but he wasn't concerned with what knowledge the humans had, nor was he interested in what would befallen them. It would be a waste of time, everything he said would fall on deaf ears. There were other things that required his attention.

Using the last of his remaining magic, he grabbed onto the connection that bounded Aerunia to him, that kept them together as not simply father and daughter - but fragments of the same soul and essence, puzzle pieces of the same universe. 'My reverie, are you there?' The question existed in his mind, but crawled onto the web of string that tangled between the two spirits, traveling to infiltrate the mind of the other. 'Be careful' His eyes opened, only wishing that Aerunia wouldn't be harmed, but he knew that she was capable and strong. After all, she wasn't a Fey, not completely. She was made out of dreams and desperation, Fey magic and loneliness, curiosity and shattering darkness. Praxis let his attention return to the woman, again pointing a gun at him.

"I don't have friends." The statement was true, he never considered anyone to be his friend. He protected those in the seelie court, ran their kingdom under the queen. He may get along with several of them, but their deaths were nothing but casualties, there were only four people he cared about, and two of them were against him. "I wonder," His eyebrows curved, he had never thought it was a possibility for someone to be ignorant of the fact, but the humans had no way of knowing unless they were told. "You have no idea what you're doing, do you?" Lethe laughed at the conclusion, of course they were shooting blindly. "Are you so sure you're not just a puppet, child?"

His pupiless eyes looked at both of the women, and he shook his head to dispel the attention given to them. Is that what humans were then? A system of people using others and the people that were used? It reminded him too much of the unseeilies, with their preferences towards chaos and disarray. He couldn't help but feel some sympathy for them, they were fighting a war as well, the fey weren't the only ones facing death and pain. It was because of the king that the human race was slowly dying, and it was then that an idea struck him. An expression of fear rose on his face, wide eyes and parted lips, the shaking of his shoulders. He felt his blood run cold at the idea that questioned his morality, crushing the hopes of the future he wanted most. Praxis bit down on his lip, forcing himself to stop shivering, and accepted that what he wanted was never going to happen.

"Do you know about our king? He's the one that forced us here." The decision to keep humans out of the loop was disregarded, now that he believed he could use them as an advantage. If they were puppets, then they would be every bit as useful. "Help me kill him." It wasn't a question, it was demand that was choked out and forceful. It was everything Lethe didn't want. He didn't want his father to be dead, but it would be better if he was killed by the actions of Praxis. If a stranger managed to end the life of the God, then he would find himself at a loss. "If he's dead, then we can return to our home, and the eternal winter will be no more." His voice was no longer calm like still water, it was the ocean that rushed each word before he could take them back, each breath becoming an attempt to end this nightmare and bring peace to them once again. His father had betrayed them, and it was Lethe's duty to see his rein of terror be put to an end, even if it reduced him to ash.

Setting

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Character Portrait: Praxis Lethe Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Leau Character Portrait: Aerunia of the Reverie Character Portrait: Jenson Xion
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Character Portrait: Praxis Lethe Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Leau Character Portrait: Aerunia of the Reverie Character Portrait: Jenson Xion
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Zahn caught movement out of the corner of her eye, causing her head to snap down the hallway just as a silver haired vampire pushed someone to the ground nearly at her feet. The girl called out to the Fae in the office, calling out for her father, tugging on her heartstrings firmly. The vampire pressed his weapon to the back of the girl's head... the happy glow surrounding Zahn was suddenly gone and a molten fire burned in her amber eyes. She felt adrenalin surge through her body, slowing time to a near halt... she'd dealt with vampires before. They were tricky because of their incredible speed, especially in close combat.

Step one: surprise and disarm. Zahn did two things at once: being naturally ambidextrous was a boon for this sort of thing. She dropped to a knee, whipping a knife out of her boot and in a single fluid motion she flicked it. While the blade was in the air, she reached behind her back and pulled a tomahawk from a hidden sheath in the lining of her coat. Zahn lunged forward as her knife drove into the vampire's hand and he released his grip on the gun reflexively. It fell but a fraction of an inch before it was hooked on Zahn's tomahawk and flipped into the office towards Ravenna, whom she assumed would see it: Zahn was currently too occupied to warn her.

Step two: Immobilize. Zahn crushed her heel into the vampire's knee while he was still reeling, driving her heel to the floor and being careful not to land on the girl. She snatched her combat knife out of his hand as he went down, and as her momentum carried her forward, she smashed her other boot straight into his groin. Zahn hooked her tomahawk on his neck as they went down, and she drove both her knees into his gut as they landed, her on top of him with the tomahawk at his throat and the tip of her knife pressed firmly at his heart. She exhaled sharply, her face inches from his, and her obsidian hair tumbling into a pool around them. For a long second she was silent as she pulled herself out of pure reaction mode and forced herself not to kill him on the spot... that was step three after all.

"Standard operating procedure dictates that we capture and interrogate all intruders if possible. That means we need her alive," she huffed. "There's supposed to be more than one. Alert security and go fucking capture the other one," she ordered with no small amount of venom before letting him up.

Zahn whipped out a handful of heavy duty zip-ties and bound Aerunia's hands and feet (comfortably) while the vampire crawled away, and then dragged the girl into the office, planting her in front of the Fae. Her molten amber eyes locked gazes with his as she pushed Leau and Ravenna aside and reached into one of her cargo pockets and produced a spare magazine from her Windrunner. She plucked the top bullet out and tossed the rest to the side, holding it up for him to see.

"I assume that by now you probably recognize one of these, but this one is special," she addressed to Praxis. "This is a .50 caliber tungsten hollowpoint," she explained. "It has a hollow core, and the point is tipped with magnesium. The hollow core creates a negative pressure zone inside the bullet as it flies, so that when it's deformed the bullet head will turn inside-out instead of crumpling. Magnesium burns at about fifty-six hundred degrees, which is enough to turn your bones into ash, not to mention that it's highly reactive while burning and will explode when exposed to water. So that we're on the same page, I can kill you with one of these from just about anywhere inside a mile and a half, and you won't just be dead: one of these will literally blow your body into pieces," Zahn told him, pausing for a long moment to let those words sink in.

"I saved that girl because she called out to you as a parent, and maybe you can help us end all this... but I want to be clear, that if you deceive us I will be given orders. Orders to put one of these in that little girl while you're watching, and then orders to put a second one in you. I'll do it, and I will sleep soundly it makes no difference to me. So before you tell us that you can help, and that killing this king of yours will end all this I want you to be absolutely sure that you want to help. Think about that while I round up the rest of your rescue party. You should tell them not to resist if you can do that sort of thing, they're less likely to be injured if they don't resist."

"This should help you focus your thoughts: it's addressed to you," she said as she dropped it in his lap and moved past him. At the very edge of the casing around the bullet in very small letters was engraved "To whom it may concern..."

Zahn pressed her hand to a hidden panel inside the bathroom, which turned into a keypad. She punched in her personal security code, and the computer chimed happily as a section of the wall flipped around and a large container shunked out of a vacuum tube. She hefted it down and opened it, pulling out a red and black, tiger-striped P90 with "Mary" painted in white along the slide, five spare magazines, which she slid into her cargo pockets, and an earpiece, which she immediately turned on.

"Security, the facility is breached, initiate lockdown and containment procedures. Any suspicious personnel, authorized or not, is to be captured and brought to the holding area for questioning. This is Iceheart: clearance Navajo six, nickel-three-four. Get the director on the line," she ordered as she slammed the first magazine home and cycled the bolt with practiced ease, then threw a second headset to Ravenna and giving her the hand signal to follow her as she stomped towards the door with a purpose.

*The director's channel is not responding, ma'am.*

"Connect me to St. Michael, encrypted channel," she ordered sternly as she stopped at the door. There was a long silence over the line, and nothing but a *click* signified that anything had happened at all. There was no answer, no sound of breathing, no sign whatsoever that anyone was on the other line. "Facility breach, containment in progress, one captive, unknown numbers. Please advise." There was a long silence on the line, Zahn was about to move on without an answer.

*You have operational control, proceed as you see fit.* A computer altered voice answered, shattering the silence once, and was then gone.

"Jenson, Ravenna with me. Leau, stay and interrogate our guests. If they offer anything useful contact us on channel four," she ordered, and then stomped out into the hall. She only made it a few steps before she slumped against the wall, seeming to lose her balance. She giggled uncontrollably for a few moments before she pushed herself back up to her feet, clearing her throat with embarrassment.

"I'm fine," she answered before the question was asked. "Doc gave me some good shit... I'm just a little high," she explained, with a bit of that happy glow returning.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Praxis Lethe Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Leau Character Portrait: Aerunia of the Reverie Character Portrait: Jenson Xion Character Portrait: Orpheus
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#, as written by Layla
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Everything seemed to be flying at her. Ravenna's face showed no reaction, save for a slight narrowing of her eyes as she dodged guns, knives and oh, there went a chair, with ease. She was, after all, a Vampire, and one of the older thousand year old ones, at that. IPAF was close to a part time job to kill time and relieve her boredom, honestly. Still, she wished the Fey would, she didn't know, breathe fire and summon Demons, anything.

She narrowed her eyes at the silver-haired Vampire, expecting him to stop and bow at the sight of her. She had to admit, she was rather surprised when he didn't. Vampires were a little old fashioned in that they were a monarchy, of sorts, she happened to be... Ugh, she didn't even like to think of the title. What dignified thousand year old immortal would want to be thought of as the Princess of Vampires? She would've preferred something more sophisticated, like... No, Twilight had butchered the word 'Vampire' years ago.

Everyone - especially Zahn - was darting around, acting in a rush. Time ran differently for Vampires; Ravenna saw no urgency but, eh.

"Jenson, Ravenna, with me," Zahn ordered. Ravenna cocked a brow but said nothing, deciding to follow Zahn in order to observe how she handled things. Perhaps the Shapeshifter needed a promotion. When they were out in the hall, Zahn began to laugh hysterically and quite uncharacteristically, slumping down the wall and standing once again. Ravenna didn't blind as Zahn explained herself. It didn't matter to her whether the girl was on heroin or crack as long as she got the job done. Vaguely, she noticed she was not blinking because Vampires didn't need to blink. Most of the time she tried to, though, if just to ease people's fear and gain their trust when needed. She was sure Zahn didn't mind her unblinking aqua stare. Besides, she didn't need Zahn to trust her.

"When your superiors hear of this," Ravenna began, watching the Shifter. "They will confiscate the Faeries. The IPAF council and the district leaders - although, I do not believe this applies for Anastasia Varias - aren't quite trying to save the Earth. My brother and I are not quite sure of what they want, but what they care about certainly isn't the wellbeing of the world or the eradication of Faeries." Ravenna said this without blinking, as if she might if she were speaking of the weather. Zahn had earned her respect and, well, she did as she wished, not as the IPAF council wished. Unlike her brother, she'd not been sworn to secrecy. No one knew Ravenna knew, they were idiots and it was no fault of Ravenna's if they thought they could lie to a Vampire of her calibre.

"Don't you ever wonder why they keep all the Fey you capture? They say it's to see how best to kill them and use their powers for weapons, but we already know what kills them and it's not like they're that difficult to kill. Don't you ever wonder why we Vampires haven't drunk them all dry?" she asked, taking apart the submachine gun and putting it back together absently. She'd done it enough times that she didn't need an ounce of concentration for it. Having an infinite amount to time tended to do that to you. All Vampires tended to have one obsession and hers was weaponry, she'd mastered most, if not all, over the years.

"We can sniff them from a mile away," Ravenna explained.

"Lockdown has been terminated. Doors, opening," a mechanic voice said. Ravenna raised a brow as all the doors began sliding wide open, including the ones shielding the elevators.

"Computer malfunction?" she asked.

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"I believe the phrase you are searching for is: O. M. G," Orpheus offered as he appeared, seemingly from nowhere, in front of the three Faeries. "Earthlings are quite curious, do you not agree? Ooo, Ferrero Rochers," he said, taking a chocolate from the desk he was sitting on. "Lovely food they have," he said, unwrapping the chocolate and popping it in his mouth.

He wore no glamour, having the world-famous human facade he had. Instead, his pale blonde hair brushed past his armour-clad collarbones, each strand smooth and flawless as if they feared their master and therefor acted perfect in his presence. He lifted his emerald green eyes and touched each Fey with his gaze, lingering briefly on his Aer-bear. A garland of a rare Fey metal with an even rarer gem sat on his head, tucked behind his pierced and pointed ears. His glove and armour-clad fingers dipped down for another Ferrero Rocher.

"Funny story," he began. "I charmed," Hypnotised. "The receptionist and signed my name on her breast, as requested. The Earthlings responsible for the defence systems were a little harder to seduce," he said. "Very well defended minds, if I might say," he said, smiling at his clever use of human puns. "How have you been? It's been quite sometime, hasn't it? Oh, by the way, our Rae of Light is alive and most likely unwell," he said, sliding his gaze over to Praxis.

"You're as much of a stick in the mud as you ever were, I observe," he said. "And what happened to you?" he asked with a curious tilt of his head. Leau, he believed her name was. He briefly noted that she was unlikely to live much longer, he wondered where he would put her. Hell? Heaven? For himself? She didn't seem useful enough for the last.

"My loveliest Aerunia," he purred, smiling and hopping off the desk to stride over to his favourite Faerie - beside the Queen, of course. She was as dainty and fragile-looking as she ever was, but of course, appearances did not reflect inner realities. "You look quite ruffled," he said, curling a lock of her hair around his long fingers. He tilted his lips into a gentle smile, making him appear even more perfect than he already was. "Cute," he said, looking from her to Praxis. "Saving your one of a kind father, I see," he said. "He is... Well-endowed." Orpheus laughed at the sexual innuendo, stepping back - he was tall - and running his fingers over the iron desk and walls.

"I believe the Earthling word for this is 'Overkill.'"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Praxis Lethe Character Portrait: Dunkelzahn Character Portrait: Leau Character Portrait: Aerunia of the Reverie Character Portrait: Orpheus
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If he could breath easy, it would be too soon. If only he could break apart the iron bindings that kept him under the waves, pouring harsh salt water into his lungs, depleting oxygen, he could cough it up and breath again. "Aerunia." The name fell from his lips, not spoken like a prayer, not how he addressed the Queen. The name was spoken with possession, his daughter, whos injuries sparked fire inside his bones, replacing marrow for embers. Emotions were pulled from nothing as red hot anger, rage, began to condensate and then evaporate into the atmosphere. The man who dared hurt his daughter would not be granted mercy of any kind, Praxis would asphyxiate him with his enmity, drain his body with vengeful wrath.

This never came, he could not bend emotions at his will in this state, and his soul crumbled in aghast helplessness. How he wished to wrap his arms around her, run his fingers through her hair and whisper to her - tell her stories in a hushed voice, take away the world around them and create one of their own. His eyes, they stretched in horror, hearts stopping as the man threatened to take away the one who gave his legs a reasons to stand. Those eyes watched as the man was attacked, a woman with the spirit of a beast, who didn't hesitate or waste time with petty warnings. His hearts contracted again, cycling blood into his brain, and Lethe exhaled what he didn't know he was holding back.

Blood fell onto the ground, drops of the woman's violence, holding Praxis' relief and gratitude. He wouldn't think he would feel that for a human, or what was close to one, though when he saw Aerunia placed in front of him - unharmed, he felt his thanks reflect in his iris'. The Fey watched, nonspeaking, as she spoke to him. He met her eyes, tears of the Sun, as the Incas would name it. Those eyes that caused a tremor to run down his spine, as they explained her ruthless loyalty to the orders she received, incapable of receiving guilt if she was to kill them both. His drained mien watched her, warily, eyes only narrowing slightly as she elucidated that she would very well kill his Reverie as well.

He wouldn't let that happen, he would rather this entire universe collapse before he let someone take away her life. If she vanished from his hold, he would forsake this world in blind revenge. His teeth drew blood from his bottom lip, the liquid licked away, swallowed and ignored. The woman was suspicious, that he could relate to, even if it brought him complications. If he was in her shoes there would be no words that could convince him to trust a stranger. He could work with one, but trust was something he did not give easily, especially not to people who were previously noted as the enemy. Praxis nodded his head, heeding what was told to him, the suggestion being accepted and festering in his mind. It was not deception that he had planned, there would be no fancy lies to bring them to a gossamer trap. They would be two parties working together to reach the same goal, groups that had their weapons ready to end the other if their fragile bond was so much scratched.

As far as he was concerned, that was perfectly fine with him. He held his tongue, not yet voicing his opinion, deciding to listen to her and await her return before they made an official pact. Silence fell as they were left in the room with the traitor, his gaze flickering over her and then to Aerunia. He studied her, examined and found how weak she had grown, worn down from the iron and fights that littered the hours before the present. "My Reverie," He began, tone light, as if they were not placed under the callous guillotine. "Let your soul grow stronger, as I give you what is mine." Eyelids drifted shut, he focused on the power within him, not just from the Light but from his life. Praxis dissected his soul, spirit and essence, tore it apart and let it fly away from him, until it clutched onto who was once but a dream. It was a transfer, one that left him weaker than ever, his soul bleeding and energy depleting.

A mischievousness voice brought him to open his eyes again, his blurry vision not disabling him from identifying who was Orpheus. He was under a vertigo spell, the world tilting from side to side, riding on ocean currents. Nevertheless, it did not prevent him from groaning, irritation bubbling inside of him. There was no rest for him these days, no breaks from being hunted by those that wanted him dead and no hope of being left alone by annoying individuals that had odd tastes and fascinations. What was he doing here, and why? Praxis looked upwards, his neck craning back in exasperation. There were several answers to that question - from the Fey wanting to bother others, cause trouble, wiggle his way into their affairs, get under his skin, or he actually was finding himself the right priorities and was looking to aid them in the restoration of their world.

He hoped that the last thought was true, although Orpheus could be infuriating at times, Lethe couldn't deny that the other man was capable, stronger than an average Fey. Howbeit, that didn't do much to make him feel any happier, as he became too close to Aerunia. The eldest of the group looked towards the creature in question, loosing his soured visage in favor of an apathetic stare. Usually Orpheus didn't bother him much, he tended to just exist despite his shenanigans, often ignored in favor of other, more important matters. But he couldn't have picked a worse time to press his buttons, and his lips turned into a frown, his brow furrowing.

"Do not ruin what I have worked for, Orpheus." He warned, a sigh following the stern words soon after. Praxis glanced over to Leau, the Fey that betrayed her own kind and worked under the IPAF. He trusted her less than the women from before, for she had already proved herself of being disloyal. There was too much tension in the air, and the arrival of the other Fey had only seemed to make it worse for the Queen's right hand, his body nearing collapse with the added stress. Lethe looked back over to whom deciding to pop in, interrupt and invite himself into the chaos. "I've already seen the Queen." This time, when he addressed Orpheus, he did not hold any malice in his tone. It was serious, holding an underlying dash of being forlorn. "She doesn't remember anything. Not me, or your, or who she was. From what I can conclude," He paused, pressed his lips together, and then spoke again. "She's practically human."