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Saber Cantin

Pompous prince

0 · 338 views · located in The Manor

a character in “Knock 'em Dead”, as played by AuthorAnnon

Description

Full name: Saber Cantin
Gender: Male
Age: 18
Personality: Simply put, Saber is a prince and he knows it. He does not have to be the smartest or the fastest or the strongest, so long as he can control those. And he does. Easily. Despite his seemingly delicate features, Saber is able to intimidate even the thickest of muscle heads. There is something about the way he can twist anyone’s words to benefit him. If he does not get his way, Saber has been known to get even in some very frightening ways.

One of his exes dared to cheat on him, not that Saber was ever faithful. However, that was not the arrangement. Saber was, of course, free to sleep whoever and whenever he wanted. His partner was not. Saber was most definitely the jealous type. To get even, Saber used his unsavory ties to have some very unpleasant things done to the person his partner had cheated with. The man was so frightened that he was practically Saber’s pet after that point. He was a simpering little whiney bitch which, hypocrisy aside, Saber could not stand. He kicked that ex to the side and found himself some new toys to play with.

Appearance: Image
Saber wears only the best clothing. Each outfit is carefully put together so that he not only looks well put together, but powerful as well. Saber likes to wear his black hair in a messy fashion, even though it might not be in fashion. In Saber's mind, he is fashion. If he looks odd, it is only because everyone else does not understand his depth.

Other: (Anything else you’d like to add. This isn’t mandatory.)
Short history: His father had never taught him this apparent meaning of right and wrong. His mother had tried until she died in her sleep when Saber was four, but everything went downhill from there. Well, his father might have tried, but the man was rarely around. Most of the time Saber was raised by a long line of nannies that were always cowed by his pink eyes. Saber soon found that a flash of his smile to the weakling maids and nannies could get him anything from an extra cookie to a new bike. All at his father’s expense, of course.

The man would try to discipline him, but he was always so tired and busy from work. There was no way he could rein in Saber’s behavior and so the manipulation continued. That would have been fine normally, given his status, but even the elite can have some sort of limits. It was quickly clear that by the time Saber was a young teenager, he had lost his regard for other humans’ lives. He started to order street rats to fight for his amusement at the park. The sad thing was, though, that he could get away with it. Worse yet, Saber had gotten very good at pretending that he was repenting and remorseful when his father tried to discipline, but his behavior got worse with time.

So begins...

Saber Cantin's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Saber Cantin
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#, as written by Mela
Dante Valentine

Headache. The worst the young woman had ever felt. She had yet to open her eyes, the pounding in her head leaving her more or less incapacitated. She moaned and curled up in the… bed, she was in, her hands moving up to grasp her head, as if that would help rid her of this awful pounding. It felt like three hulking males were beating on the inner walls of her head with major sledge hammers, relentlessly trying to drive her insane with the pain. Dante had awoken only minutes ago, but she had yet to open her eyes, afraid that doing so would worsen her headache. She had always been very susceptible to pain, and especially headaches were not rare. It wasn’t unusual for her to wake up with her head pounding, but this felt worse… and different somehow. Didn’t matter. A servant girl would come to check on her soon, and then bring something to lessen the pain. Some kind of herb concoction the cook knew how to make.

The redhead squeezed her eyes tighter, pain making her forehead crease in concentration as she focused on handling the pain. She lay like this for a long while, feeling like she had spent days this way, when really, it only took ten minutes for the pain to begin to subside. A soft sigh escaped her lips when she finally felt able to force her eyes open. The pain wasn’t gone by far, but it was manageable, and that was as good as it got. She had things to do before-. Her thoughts trailed off at that because her eyes had finally fluttered open, taking in a room she did not recognize. She blinked a couple of times, trying to focus her sight and maybe also to make sure she was seeing the truth, and not some dream-lazed vision of sorts. Slowly, Dante moved into a sitting position, looking around herself, feeling extremely disoriented. Where was she? And, on that note… how had she gotten here?

She frowned slightly, trying to think past the still present pounding in her head. She was in a strange place she didn’t recognize, she couldn’t remember anything past going shopping with the young servant girl, Gertrude this morning, and she was still wearing the same dress she’d been wearing last she remembered. The redhead daintily moved a foot down onto the wooden floor of the room she was in, looking around herself as if she expected to be assaulted for moving out of the bed. When nothing happened, Dante carefully slid her other foot down and moved into a standing position. She ran her hands down her dress, attempting to smooth out the majority of the folds and creases it had gotten from her sleeping in it. What on earth had happened? She tilted her head a little to the side, watching the room, absorbing all the information she could from it. It was simple, but moneyed all the same. It looked like the guest room in the house of a rich lord, maybe, or maybe even just a merchant like her own father and husband. Knowing her hairdo was most likely messed up anyway, Dante let it down, putting the pins in the small table next to the bed before running a hand through the red mane.

Nibbling on her bottom lip, eyes wide and careful, like an attentive, fearful doe, Dante padded across the floor to reach the only door in the room. She wasn’t going to find out anything by staying put… right? She was only wearing stockings – no shoes – which intrigued her as well. Had she been carried, her shoes falling off in the process? Or had they been removed after she had gotten to this place? Had she blacked out and gotten here herself, leaving her shoes in a place she didn’t recall? So many possibilities, and she was going to try and get some answers to go with them. On that note, Dante twisted the doorknob, slightly surprised to find it unlocked. If she’d been abducted, she wouldn’t have been allowed to move around freely, would she? Oh, she had no idea. It wasn’t like she had really ever been in a situation like this one before. Trembling just a touch, Dante pushed the door open and peeked outside, taking in the hallway as she finally ceased chewing on her own lip.

It was almost empty, aside from the other person sticking his head out one of the other doors. Well that was… surprising. She watched him silently, trying to evaluate whether he was in the same position as her. He didn’t seem all that perplexed or worried. She couldn’t quite describe the look on his face, but she felt certain it was a whole lot different from the one she was sporting. And he was young. Younger than her. At least, he wasn’t over 20 years old, she could tell that much, and he didn’t look established to her, so he probably didn’t have wife or children. Most likely just a young man enjoying life. She envied the male sex sometimes, for being allowed to do more or less what they wanted to. They didn’t have a time limit for when to marry, like women had. Women over 21 rarely ever got married if they hadn’t gotten a ring before then. It didn’t matter how old the man was; the woman was always young in comparison.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Hassen Heindrick Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Saber Cantin
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#, as written by Mela
Mrs. Dante Valentine

The young redhead blinked a couple of times when the strange darkhaired male smiled. It was no happy or remotely innocent smile. No, this was a smile she’d seen men take on often when they figured something good was in wait, even if they had to take less than friendly measures – the kind of smile many of her father’s and husband’s associates like to sport, in fact. So odd to see on such a young face. But at least he was not shouting at her, or even being uncomfortable as such. She wasn’t entirely sure how she would react, or if she even could take as much right now. She just wanted to know where she was, why she was there, and how she’d gotten there in the first place. Nothing more, nothing less. From there, she’d be able to decide on a course of action, not that she could do much; she was a young, married woman, but men did not necessarily care about her marital status, and even if they did, Dante had hardly any rights without her husband or father at her side.

Just as the young man by the other door began pushing it further apart from the doorframe, making Dante worry about his intentions, another man appeared. Suddenly, Dante felt strange; a woman among men. She was usually ordered to leave, and as the dutiful woman she was, she did as was commanded. It had been ingrained in her, her entire life. When the man bowed, her tension eased. He must be a servant then, she concluded easily, although something was oddly dark about this man. It made her careful. Would have, even if she hadn’t been in a strange house, her shoes gone. Soon after the bow, he gestured for her and the other male to approach him, but Dante remained wary as ever, eyeing the strange man quietly. Something was making his face look… odd. The redhead was still considering her options when a male voice rang out, and she pensively bit her lower lip, watching the scene as he emerged, nearing the servant.

He carried himself like a man of money, someone who had never once in his life felt the need to be humble. He looked no different than her brother, his attitude precisely the same. Dante had long ago found that by watching people, one could conclude much of them, both personality and past. For instance she had just now figured that this man was quite fond of the female sex, considering the way he was giving her looks. Her eyes widened just slightly at his improper comment at her, however. Scenery, was she? She bit slightly harder on her lip to keep herself quiet; a trick she had learned the second she had matured enough to have need of a husband. Apparently, men wanted their women silent and willing to obey. Truly, she was no better than a servant to her husband. He had not even gotten her with child yet, and they had been married long enough.

The man’s words made her wonder, because they made no sense to her. On one hand, he seemed as though he was as lost here as she, and then, on the other, he talked as if he knew exactly what he was doing, as though he had experienced this a thousand times. It bewildered the young redhead quite a bit, which, she had to admit, took a lot to accomplish these days. She had seen quite a bit she sometimes wished she had not; things a good woman should never see… or hear. Dante did not move, deciding to stay put and watch this interaction between the two men. It could not hurt, and she needed not to get in the middle of the affairs of men. It was not her place. Besides, she had always preferred to watch and think, rather than act and react.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Hassen Heindrick Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Saber Cantin
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#, as written by Mela
Mrs. Dante Valentine


Dante wasn’t sure how to react when the strange servant began laughing hysterically, his face twisting up. But it wasn’t a genuine laugh. It was more like a laugh one might utter when another uttered something exceptionally, stupidly ridiculous. Something told Dante she and the high born male being laughed at, were in the same boat, and that is was a rocky one at that. She would have to tread carefully, figure out what was really going on here. Obviously the servant wasn’t a big talker, which Dante wouldn’t normally mind. Right now, however, she could really use some straight answers, and she knew he wasn’t going to provide them. At least not yet. Would he ever? Would she have to spend the rest of her life here? She took a deep breath, her lips parting on the thought. For once, Dante wanted to go home. She would rather deal with her gruff, straightforward and simple husband than this confusing situation. It was just more excitement than the woman had ever wanted for herself.

Dante could tell from the other guest’s stance that the servant’s laughing had thrown him entirely, even though she could not see his face. Although oftentimes Dante found faces could be deceiving. She had met many men who were able to conceal their feeling in their facial expressions, but few ever thought to consider their body language, so Dante had taught herself to read it. And read it she did. Quite well. Her eyes had been studying the young male, so when she looked up only to see a scowl on the servant’s face, she raised both eyebrows in surprise. What was he scowling about? Well, she could maybe see why he would be scowling at the other male, but her? She hadn’t spoken a single word. But then, maybe he was just in a bad mood, or… her thoughts trailed off when he gestured for the two of them to… follow him. She could practically see the wheels in his head spinning, his eyes calculating. She blinked a couple of times. It was rare to see such intelligence in a servant. What was he plotting? She had seen the same look in the eyes of business men, yet there was something darker about this on. Something she hadn’t seen before, and couldn’t yet place. It unnerved her.

Dante began nibbling on the inside of her cheek, considering her options which, let’s face it, were quite few. She could go with him and maybe make some pieces of this puzzle fit together, or she could stay and wait. Or possibly die. Possibly even worse. But then, something horrible could happen either way. She breathed out heavily just as the other male began walking towards the servant, his arms crossed over his chest demonstratively. His stance almost made the redhead smile, because he was so obviously trying to showcase something that wasn’t quite true to himself. Again, however, she held her tongue as always, and straightened her dress, slowly making her way over to the servant, wondering what he wanted with them. What were his plans? Was he taking them to the master of the house? Would they get to see their kidnapper? The female inwardly sighed. At least her husband wasn’t with her here. Not because she didn’t want anything to happen to him especially, but rather that he would take control of things, and Dante knew in her gut that she would handle things better than he. It didn’t take a genius to know that she was the smarter one. The more cunning individual. Even if people rarely noticed.

As she moved closer to the servant, his features become more distinct, and she almost gasped in horror at the ugly scar stretching across his cheek, but no, she kept her face innocently expressionless, her eyes soft, her mouth slightly parted, her breaths slow and measured. Her body was kept straight and dignified, even though she knew she had no rights here. She was still of good family, and she had been taught to display herself in a certain way. Dante gathered her hands loosely in front of her, as she walked one measured step at a time, feeling oddly naked without her shoes, and with her hair let loose.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Hassen Heindrick Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Saber Cantin
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#, as written by Mela
Mrs. Dante Valentine


When the scarred servant began walking towards her, a smile on his face, Dante on just managed to keep still, reminding herself that even if she could run, she had no clue where to run to. Plus, it wasn’t like she was tied down or anything, and no one had begun inflicting pain on her in any way. Still, though, Dante inwardly recoiled, fighting her own instincts. His smile seemed to want to tell her something, maybe he was attempting to exude some kind of trustworthiness. Dante, however, had a feeling the servant was anything but, so she remained inexpressive, watching him, her inner cogs turning furiously. Until he touched her, at which point the redhead froze entirely, eyes slightly widened in shock. What on earth was he doing, and why? Why would he caress her cheek like that? Comfort? She blinked several times, the movements rapid as she tried to regain her equilibrium. She didn’t respond, having no clue what to do in such a situation. People didn’t simply touch each other like that where she came from. Especially not servants. So the whole action was confounding to her.

Then suddenly he was moving, brushing past her and the young gentleman. Dante looked at the other guest, wondering what he was thinking right now, possibly because she had trouble figuring out how she felt herself. To be honest, she was taking all of this a lot more calmly than she should, which worried her slightly. Why wasn’t she freaking out? She should be freaking out, panicking… yet she wasn’t. What was wrong with her? Regardless of her inner turmoil, Dante found herself following the servant when he began walking. It soon dawned on her that they were being lead through areas they had been before, and it seemed to her like the servant was at times taking completely random turns, which confused the young redhead more than a little. What was he doing? Trying to confuse them so they wouldn’t be able to find their way back? She frowned in thought ever so slightly, but she held her tongue, keeping pace dutifully.

Then they stopped, the servant knocking on a door that was obviously frequented a lot more than most others they had passed. Was the owner of the house in there, or… supposed to be there? She mentally corrected herself because no one answered the door, and the servant turned back to them, shrugging as if asking them what they wanted to do. This was such an odd situation, the redhead had no clue how to respond, so she looked to the gentleman on her side, wondering if he was going to say something. She had a feeling he wasn’t one to hold his tongue or to show any kind of humility. And… she was right, she realized, just as he spoke. Her lips fell apart slightly as she looked at him, wondering if he was even sane. He acted as though he had every right to demand things here, as though he was master of the house, or even someone the master of this house owed any servitude towards. His stance was defiant, much like that of a child not getting its way. A spoiled child, at that.

Dante didn’t know whether to laugh or shake her head at him, so she put her face and stature back into non-expressive lines and looked at the servant, curious to see how he would respond to the demands of the other male. She straightened her gown once more, wishing she was wearing shoes, and that she had fixed her hairdo instead of letting it down. She was feeling plenty uncomfortable as it was, and she worried her fellow guest would end up angering someone enough to get them both killed.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linnet Mallory Character Portrait: James Butler Character Portrait: Hassen Heindrick Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin
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Miss Mallory was an utter mess. James was too for that matter, but for different reasons. But for a single moment he had her utter attention, as she sobbed and questioned his motives. He paused for a moment and tipped his head slightly to one side, red eyes fixing on her face again. "Why, my dear, isn't it obvious? So I can eat your little human souls." Her eyes grew round and wide. Perhaps it hadn't been that obvious then, she was quite surprised. Silly human. She would die soon enough though, he would make sure of it. Letting her in on all the secrets was great fun, but she couldn't be allowed the go and spread them around. Not that there were many to share the secrets with. Why, she could tell an end table, or Lira's dead body, or maybe a window pane, but nothing of any matter. Just as it should be. And her soul would taste all the better for the fright, what with all the strong emotion probably coursing through her thimble of a body at the moment.

A loud clap brought him out of his amusement a few second after. It made Miss Mallory jump too. Drake whirled around, irritated. "What do you want, Hassen?" His voice reflected his annoyance as he pivoted. He knew it was Hassen, because James was lying on the ground and no one else would dare try to catch his attention in such a way. He tolerated it from Hassen though, because he didn't know better. If he hadn't have picked the stitches out of the wound so often, maybe he'd have a better mouth to carry his voice, but humans would be humans, wouldn't they?

Speaking of humans, there were two following Hassen, Drake noticed as he turned fully. The new ones. "Ah, made some new friends, have we?" He commented, his voice slightly more genial than it had been at first. "If there's a problem, you'll just have to cope, boy, if not, have fun with whatever it is you plan to do." He said as he grabbed Lira's body by the throat and hauled it over his shoulder. No need to leave that laying out in the middle of the floor, like James was currently doing.

"And about our friends, Hassen, check on Allease later. I fear she might be festering, she hasn't been out of her room since yesterday, and I'm not going to feed a useless body, and James is a bit too put out to do anything at the moment." He strolled past the trio of humans, ignoring the two new guests. He was going to disappear back in his quarters and sleep off his headache for a few hours before venturing out to purchase more food for the humans. And perhaps a new player, if all went well.

James, who was still bleeding profusely, paid little attentions to his surroundings until Hassen made an entrance. With a man and a woman trailing behind him. James struggled to sit up, still pressing one hand to his throat to staunch the bleeding that was making his face look whiter than a sheet. Linnie looked to be in shock. If he hadn't been too busy trying to keep himself conscious, he would have done something to comfort her, although there probably wasn't much he could do, considering he probably looked a sight and was part of the reason for her semi-catatonic state. The boy really didn't want to be stepped on, as laying out in the middle of the hall would probably promise, and he had to be somewhat on his guard because Hassen was around. Hassen had never really been on to kick him while he was down for the count too much though, considering all the times James had been in various states of damage. Broken fingers, stab wounds, strangulation, and once a broken neck had plagued him since Hassen joined the group. Okay, the broken neck had been entirely his fault, climbing too far out onto the roof, but other than that.

The boy managed to prop himself up on the wall with a bit of effort, leaning next to Linnie and trying desperately not to touch her. His fingers were still clamped like a vice around his neck, which was now dribbling instead of spurting, as he was at a better angle for gravity, and he was actually very close to running out of blood anyway. It was all on the rug. Another thing to clean up later, oh joy.

James fixed his narrowed eyes on Hassen as the other passed, not threateningly, but warily. Like he could be threatening in this state anyway. Hassen seemed interested in some other task though, so there wasn't much point, other than the fact that he looked downright mournful and in pain with his eyes narrowed like that. The green eyes flicked briefly to the man and the woman, but they didn't hold much interest at the moment. He was too busy worrying about Linnie and tracking Hassen's movements. Everything would be fine so long as no one bothered Linnie. If not, well, James would probably end up being beat up some more. As such is the way of the somewhat immortal life.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Linnet Mallory Character Portrait: James Butler Character Portrait: Hassen Heindrick Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin
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#, as written by Mela
Mrs. Dante Valentine


The smirk on her fellow captive’s face unnerved Dante. She felt more or less out of her element as she followed the limping servant, and she couldn’t tell if it was the whole situation or the fact that the darkhaired male on her right seemed to be enjoying the power he apparently held over the limping, scarred servant. If she had to be honest with herself, he creeped her out now, which automatically made her dislike him, not that she would show it as long as it wouldn’t benefit her. She knew nothing certain of her situation, and if she had to, she was going to manipulate her way of it. For that, she needed to appear neutral for now. Maybe this self-satisfied, spoiled brat could be helpful. If not, well, then she could fortunately avoid him… at some point… maybe. She inwardly sighed, glancing at the limp of her guide. She didn’t like the way he forced himself forward in spite of it. Had he been her servant, she would have made him rest in bed until he was better.

As she walked, her skirts swaying softly around her feet, Dante was more or less in her own world, caught in the track of her own thoughts, so when the two other stopped, she didn’t notice until she was slightly in front of Saber, at which point she abruptly stopped, taking a step back to bring herself level with the other once more. Yes, she was a woman, but he no more than a child, and she wasn’t going to stand behind him as though she thought him above her. Not just yet, anyway. For now, she moved her eyes from the two males to examine the world around her, which immediately stilled any movement, her thoughts pausing. As the sight sunk in, the redhead forgot all about Saber and Hassen, her widening eyes instead settling on the pool of blood on the floor. Her lips fell slightly apart, but her hands remained resting on her front, elegantly placed together. So much blood. And… oh god, was that a dead body?! Her eyes immediately narrowed at that, her mouth closing as it settled into a thin line.

She wasn’t the type to panic, which in this case worried her more than a little. She should be panicking, right? She took a deep breath, steadying herself enough to bring her face into yet another inexpressive mien. Her eyes moved ever so slowly to Saber when he spoke, and she almost wanted to slap him right across the face. Who had raised this boy; this unfeeling, cold, terrible being? However, in control as always, she merely redirected her vigilant gaze to the blonde, redeyed being behind the puddle of blood, feigning indifference rather successfully. On the inside though, Dante’s mind was asking a million different questions, but still there was no sense of panic, and she briefly wondered if maybe she was in shock; she definitely felt numb enough. More than enough. Sympathy was clear in her heart, however, a slight ache settling for the poor, dead man, and the male next to him, from who the blood appeared to be coming. A neck wound? How had he gotten that? What had happened here?

Dante didn’t utter a single question though, instead jumping at the sound of Hassen’s clapping, which drew the attention of… of… what was he? The being was towering, and lean, yet he emitted power so entirely Dante almost fell to her knees. This was the master of this house. There was no doubt in her mind, and she was suddenly ecstatic that he appeared busy with the dead body he just… slung over his shoulder… by the neck. This sight almost made her drop her theatrics, but she steeled her resolve, knowing she could do nothing. She doubted anyone could, which made her wonder… what where her options really? How long would she be forced to stay here? No one safe for the small girl by the wall, seemed too bothered by this display of… death. Was that a normal thing here? Was she here so that she could die the same way? No, that couldn’t be right… yet the red eyes of this pale being… well, they could simply make her believe in anything. What was he? No human had red eyes. Dante, however, had never believed in myths and tales, so this was all very unreal to her.

She cleared her throat, her voice deceptively calm and bored as she spoke once the tall being had left with his… hollow human body, “another route to our destination appears preferable in this case, gentlemen.” It was all she said, but her voice was clear and no-nonsense as always, yet feminine and soft. She realized this was the first words she had spoken in this house, and she was only speaking because the pool of blood was too big for her to avoid it in crossing, and she refused to step in it. Mostly because she had a feeling that her shield of numbness would crumble at that particular experience, but also because it was more than a little disgusting. Her words themselves held no actual authority, but her voice very clearly spoke of the fact that she was no lowly woman; unless she was dragged or carried, Dante wasn’t crossing through that blood. It was that simple.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: James Butler Character Portrait: Hassen Heindrick Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin
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#, as written by Mela
Mrs. Dante Valentine


Like with almost everything in this place, Dante found herself perplexed at what she saw. What she experienced. Hell, even what she felt. Nothing made much sense here, and she honestly wasn’t too fond of it. She got to reply as to whether or not they would be taking another route, but the servant, Hassen, seemed not entirely opposed to the idea. She had to appreciate the little things, it seemed. So she said no more, but fell right back into her observant, almost invisible state, and as such, Dante showed no reaction when Hassen began crawling on the floor, soon throwing the bleeding boy over his shoulder, much like one would a big bag of flour or rice. It was more than a little alien, and in truth Dante was starting to worry about her own lack of feelings towards all of this.

She shook it off as they began walking, however, telling herself again and again, that she should just let things be, figure things out by herself, keep quiet, and perhaps manage to get out of there alright, or… at least alive. She was slightly offended by the fact that they had yet to be taken under any consideration by the master of the house. But then again, another part of her was glad, because she felt certain that creature in there didn’t often pay any kind attention to anyone.

Dante didn’t miss the fact that her co-guest seemed to be watching her, trying to read her. Good luck, she thought to herself, inwardly smirking. Hell, if he did figure her out, she’d probably bake him cookies or something, because as it was, that had yet to happen. Not because Dante was that terribly complicated a woman, but rather, because the façade on top of that simple woman, was very complicated. She sent a look in his direction, letting indifference, but slight amusement, sink into that one look, letting him know she had noticed, that she welcomed the challenge, and that she was not worried. So many things could be put into the looks one chose to give others. The difference between Dante and most, was that she could so easily control it.

Dante’s gaze was soon on the bleeding man, however. He seemed to be struggling to stay awake. Hell, he should be dead by now judging by the amount of blood he had lost. The fact that he still had enough energy to wince and to clutch the Hassen’s shirt, was astounding, and a little too much of a miracle, actually. Hmm. She’d put that away for later consideration. Suddenly, the servant stopped, and almost simultaneously, Dante stilled completely, gaze following the direction in which he was pointing. She wondered if he even could talk. Maybe that nasty scar on his cheek had something to do with that. But then again, maybe he simply did not like talking. That seemed awfully tedious when trying to explain something, however.

For some reason, Saber’s comment irritated her. His attitude irritated her, she supposed. He was simply too spoiled, too arrogant. There was a certain line one should never cross as a parent, and this boy’s parents had clearly crossed it with him. Spoiled rotten was the perfect expression to describe him, if you asked Dante. She had enough of his type in her life already. She inwardly sighed and followed him into the kitchen regardless, though. It seemed it was time for food. She didn’t have much of an appetite, although she felt she probably needed nourishment of some sort.

As Saber began looking through cupboards, having sighed as though he expected her to serve him, Dante raised an eyebrow. This was, most likely, the liveliest expression she had outwardly made since she woke up. She straightened her gown and gracefully seated herself on a chair by the dining table, watching him, not even bothering to hide it. “Do You know how to prepare a meal, sir?” She asked him calmly, her tone almost bored as she gave him a once over. She very much doubted he had ever learned such a thing, overtly spoiled little boy that he was. Truthfully she wasn’t sure he could even make a sandwich if he found the proper produce. He would probably end up eating raw meat, because he didn’t know how to prepare it, or something like that. Her face fell back into an inexpressive mien as she eyed him curiously.

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Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Saber Cantin
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Truly, Saber expected everyone to serve him. He expected the woman to serve him because she was there and the servant was clearly not going to do it. So she was expected to fall into the position. Besides, Saber was too busy thinking to be bothered with preparing food. There seemed to be a game afoot, but no one was going to explain the rules. At the very least, Saber gathered that the game involved bloodshed which was enough to make him very interested. A part of him knew that the thought of hurting someone else should not cause him quite so much joy. A part of him knew that that was sick and twisted. However, the rest of him enjoyed being sick and twisted too much to pay morality much mind. Morality was for the weak who were bound by societal laws. When one had enough money to buy any sort of entertainment, it was easy to get bored easily. One had to invent new ways to entertain oneself.

Now, if Saber wanted to get very psychoanalytical about the whole mess, he probably could have drawn a line between the lack of attention he received and some sort of traumatic event in his past. There were sometimes fuzzy memories of something dark, but he mostly just ignored them and did his best to block those out. Besides, seeing blood seemed to help him forget that deep aching emptiness. Seeing others suffering was just so…so fulfilling. It calmed that strange ache and allowed him to focus on other things as well.

Now, Saber wished someone would explain the rules of the game so that he could get on with playing. And with anything Saber did, he expected to win. And he expected to have an absolutely brilliant time as he carved his way to victory. For a moment Saber spared a thought about that bleeding man that the servant, Hassen, had been carrying. If Saber knew anything about blood loss, and he liked to think he was nearly an expert, that man probably should have been dead. So what, then, had been keeping him alive? Was something else afoot? Something…supernatural? That thought made a chill run down Saber’s spine, a rare occurrence. It was difficult to tell if the shiver was of fear or excitement, though. Perhaps of both, since he was so rarely afraid of anything anymore. Knowing that he could still feel a little fear was just too wonderful for words. And even more exciting.

If there was something supernatural involved in what was going on here, then that increased the risk. As well as the ultimate payoff. It meant that Saber did not know everything that was going on which both amused and irritated him. Saber liked to be in control, but he also enjoyed some surprises. Soon enough he would know everything that was going on.

Saber noticed the woman’s slight amusement at his glance and smirked in response. Oh, she would be fun to figure out. He wondered what would ultimately happen to her if this game was going to go as he expected. How long would she last? For a moment, he openly measured her, considering her height and weight. Would she be able to fight against someone who attacked her? Saber was youngish and slender, but he was fast. He doubted he would be able to overpower some if he was confronted physically, but he could escape fairly easily.
Now was not the time for that. There was no reason to hurt the woman right now. Especially because he was not bored. This new situation was providing enough entertainment to keep him busy for a while. With a slight chuckle, Saber shook his head. He really needed to stop getting so ahead of himself and enjoy the present.

“A snack, yes. A proper meal, though, not particularly. There has never been a reason for me to learn,” He said with a strangely genuine-looking smile as he turned to the woman for a moment. He then continued his search. After a little digging he found a few rolls and some jam. He also found a knife. Though, unfortunately, not a particularly sharp one. He may want to find one for later. For protection, of course. Saber piled his finds onto a plate and carried it over to the table. Sitting down, he ripped into the bread and started to spread a sizable portion of jam on it.

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Character Portrait: James Butler Character Portrait: Hassen Heindrick Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin
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#, as written by Mela
Mrs. Dante Valentine


Dante sat quiet, reserved, watching the young man before her. Part of her wanted to run out of there, but the cold layer of numbness she had donned since waking up to this mess, in this place… well, it certainly kept her in place, oddly calm in the midst of chaos and all of these new, disturbing experiences. She feared her mind might collapse upon itself if she ever let go of this layer. Perhaps she would forever be forced to wear it to preserve her sanity and her ice cold ability to logically deduct things easily enough. Dante knew she was an intelligent woman, but sometimes, especially right now, she almost wished it had not been so. Things would have been much easier to her had she been dumb enough to not fully recognize the situation she was in.

But then, had she been dumber, she would most likely soon look like the gruesome, dead body she had seen practically hollowed, all of his inner working gone, as the tall, blonde… creature, had put him on his shoulder and dragged him along, as though he had merely been a sack of potatoes or flour. She had such trouble figuring out how something like that could be normal in such a way. It was beyond her. She was missing pieces of the puzzle it seemed, and she did not particularly like that thought. It displeased her quite a bit, in fact. She needed those pieces, she needed more knowledge, she needed someone who could answer her many question.

What is going on? Why am I here? What exactly happened to that dead man? How come the servant does not speak and where did he get his horrid scar? Will we ever be let out of here? Am I dead? Who and what is the blonde, tall male, and why did he have red eyes? Why does everyone seem to think of pools of blood in the hallways as normal? So terribly many questions completely unanswered, and she wondered if she would have to figure them out herself or actually find some truthful being here who could talk, and who knew enough. She doubted the likeliness of that, and so, Dante merely sat quiet, doing nothing.

However, when Saber spoke, answering her question with an almost lighthearted, genuine smile, she looked into his eyes. It was all the reaction she seemed able of. It was no interesting conversation, and she did not wish for this young man to figure her out the way his eyes so seemed to try to. But she did wonder at his smile. What did he have to smile for? The last thing Dante felt like doing, was smile. She doubted anything could wring a true smile from her anytime soon. Not in this place. She was much too dissatisfied.

She watched him quietly as he finally sat with his “snack”, not having said a word in response as of yet. Then finally she cleared her throat tactfully, blinking once, green eyes ever observant of Saber’s every move. “I see,” she noted easily, her voice containing no actual emotion, yet it was not entirely cold either. Somehow she had found the most perfectly indifferent, observant yet not hostilely cold tone of voice. It was a wonder, really, but she supposed the numbness coated her voice along with her mind. She would not be surprised if it happened to be so.

“Young men rarely do,” she then added, tilting her head slightly as she watched him. “I suppose that is nothing uncommon.” She blinked only once then, no other expression touching her face. For some reason she wanted to converse with this person, but she did not wish to breach the more serious subject of the situation they both seemed to find themselves in. This was highly uncommon.

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Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Juliet Lockwood Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin Character Portrait: Andrew white
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The human looked interested, but was it genuine of just a mask over inner fear? Drake didn't know, and he didn't particularly care. If the boy was interested, well, that was good for the game, and if he was internally scared stiff then, well, he'd die and that was good for the game too, wasn't it. The question about a notebook caused the daemon to lift his eyebrow for a moment. What would he want that for? Drake contemplated refusing, but then decided against it. Perhaps it would interesting to see what the human child wanted it for. "You'll have to ask James or Hassen about that, they're in charge of the supplies and such." He said, for he really didn't want to deal with searching something suitable out, he was too busy a man for such trivial things. And perhaps it would get the boy locked further inside the game, since at the moment he was completely separated from it, as there had been no other humans to collect, no one to create any sense of tension. But speaking of humans, Drake realized that he'd almost completely forgotten about the two less recent arrivals, the quiet woman, Miss, no, Mrs. Valentine, and Mister Cantin. He'd left them to Hassen, but the man couldn't verily explain to them the nuances nor the rules of the game.

At that moment, the female started, moving towards a weapon with her first conscious movement. Drake tensed, preparing to counter whatever attack she had in store, though it wouldn't bother him much to take any wound she had to offer, it would let them see just how powerful he was, perhaps instill a bit more fear into them. The boy stopped her, however, and Drake smirked. Of course. It was a shame though, it would have been rather fun to deal with that. the woman seemed bewildered at the boy's calm demeanor, and Drake spectated disinterestedly, resting his chin on one hand as he waited for them to be done with whatever trivial human things they were doing so he could get on with things. He whispered something to her, perhaps he was planning something? That would be entertaining. Young mister White seemed an intelligent boy, it he had something up his sleeve it would be most amusing to watch it unfold, whether it succeeded or failed was beside the point. So long as the boy didn't disappoint him like Lira had, flailing his knife around like an idiot and ultimately finding his end by the hand of a frightened little girl. The only worrisome thing was the woman, who seemed to be the boy's protector, as Hassen had looked over his master, as the stupid, sweet little servant still did. Such servitude was unthinking, and it would be very difficult to tear apart. But that was part of the fun, wasn't it?

When he deemed the child was done conferencing with the woman, Drake stood, stretching his spine and folding his hands behind him. "Well, come along then, boy, I'm sure the others are most anxious to meet you." he said dryly glancing at the human before moving towards the nearer exit to the front parlor, the one that passed through the main hall. He'd check the kitchen, first, though he wasn't sure if the humans would still be there. It was worth a shot though, and he could explain to them where their quarters were at the same time.

As they passed the hall that ultimately led to the humans' quarters, Drake paused for a moment, pointing down the hall. "Your quarters are down that hall and to the left from here, if you so wish to use them." He informed the humans, then continued on down the hall. They'd be able to find their way back from the kitchen if they wished, it was a nearly straight forward path.

The two humans he'd been looking for were indeed in the kitchen still, Drake was delighted to discover. He beckoned to the boy before stepping through the doorway to the kitchen, examining the two. They seemed to be making aimless small talk and the male had scrounged up some food. He smiled slightly, turning to see if the two humans he'd been escorting had made it inside.

"Good afternoon, Mrs. Valentine, Mister Cantin." He said pleasantly to the two humans, offering a shark tooth smile.

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Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Juliet Lockwood Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin Character Portrait: Andrew white
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Andrew White and Juliet Lockwood

Andrew would have allowed his maid to fight, if he didn't care about her or his safety. He knew that she would probably have died if she fought Drake, so he decided to not waste her life. He knew that it was possible for her to betray him, but he simply didn't care about his death as long as he got a chance to have some fun before he died. If his plans failed, then so be it.

"Well, come along then, boy, I'm sure the others are most anxious to meet you." Drake just sparked a question in Andrew's mind. Had the other house guests been alerted to his presence? If so, did they know anything about him? Andrew thought this to himself. He knew that he couldn't rely on every word that came out of Drake's mouth to be true, but it would be inconvenient if the other party already knew who he was. He would prefer to be seen as a good little child, so he would not be targeted when someone was killed. Andrew looked at the direction that Drake went, then Andrew followed Drake. Juliet followed behind Andrew, awaiting danger. Andrew noticed the abrupt pause in a hallway, but he didn't know what to make of the pause. "Your quarters are down that hall and to the left from here, if you so wish to use them." Drake informed. Andrew highly doubted that the others would pass up the opportunity to kill him in his sleep, but he knew that sleep was important. Juliet wondered how she could isolate the dangers present. Andrew would explore the house later on, so he could make a map. The map would be included in his sketch pad. He planned on getting a notebook from either James or Hassen, whoever they were. He would use the notebook to store false information, so he wouldn't be suspected of anything by Drake. He would try to figure out as much as he could about Drake and his servants, so the sketch pad could be filled to the brim with information.

Andrew and Juliet followed Drake through the kitchen door. Andrew closely examined the two in the kitchen, but he didn't see anything of interest. He would have to speak with the later, under the alias of an innocent and lost child. He knew that a kitchen could be a dangerous place, so he stayed away from any storage device that could hold a knife. Of course he didn't know that there were barely and sharp knives in the kitchen, so he would have to be cautious. He knew that the two people originally in the kitchen could be as sick and twisted as he was, since he could easily hide behind a facade of innocence. Fooling Drake would be a futile and stupid effort, since Drake had already seen the intelligence Andrew had. However, the two in the kitchen hadn't, and he planned on keeping the situation that way. Juliet felt no reason to be tense, since Andrew seemed to be calm and collected. He seemed to not even acknowledge the fact that he could be killed any second. She could easily counter any knives thrown in her direction, unless her glasses were removed. Her glasses were her Achilles heel, and mostly anybody who was sensible could tell that. Andrew frowned a bit due to him noticing that his business would probably plummet, but he quickly regained his fake good appearance. "Hello, how are you?" He directed this question towards the two that were originally in the kitchen. He had a calm and friendly tone to his voice, but a calculating and cold mind was behind that voice. Anyone who had seen what Andrew had done would know that the voice would never belong to him, but anyone who hasn't seen through his facade would probably think that he was a good person. He could barely fight, but he let Juliet do all the fighting for him. He would be vulnerable for a short time if Juliet were to suddenly die, but he could simply employ someone to do his dirty work by messing with their mind. He wondered what the two were truly like. He would soon find out, that is, if he survived long enough to. Juliet didn't smile and she didn't even speak to the two in the kitchen. She had no need to speak to them, and she didn't know what Andrew was planning to do. She couldn't exactly ask him what he planned to do, while in front of people probably involved in the plan.

He was strangely worried about the business transactions and meetings that he would not be able to supervise. He shouldn't have worried about that, but he was too used to his plans always working. However, he had never experienced anything like his current situation, so he would have to adapt and learn quickly. He had thought about lurking and gaining information slowly, but that would make him seem mysterious and a plausible suspect. He wouldn't want to be the first person suspected of a murder in the house, since that would severely hinder his plans. He could easily frame anyone of anything, but it would be an annoyance to setup someone. He didn't have the materials he usually had, so that would prove another problem. Quite frankly, he relied too much on having power all the time.

He would want to die in the most painful way imaginable, so his existence would always be remembered. He wasn't afraid of Drake, but he wasn't stupid enough to say the wrong thing and get killed. He didn't want to quite yet. Andrew's strongest fear was not being able to complete his plans, and this fear could be used as an advantage if a person knew this was Andrew's fear and knew what Andrew's plans were. Andrew wished to know where Hassen and James were, but he decided that meeting the two people already in the kitchen would be a much more important task.

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Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Juliet Lockwood Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin Character Portrait: Andrew white
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There was clearly something wrong with him. Well, by others’ definitions of sane and not, there was something wrong with him. However, Saber thought he was going about this quite logically. After all, there was no reason for him to be frightened or quite as disturbed as the woman looked. If they wanted him dead, he would be dead already. Clearly, this was going to be some sort of entertainment. And this was definitely a kind of entertainment that he could get onboard with.

“Well, then again, young men in such positions as mine should rarely need to know such a thing. We have other things to be concerning ourselves with and other things that occupy our thoughts. Young men such as myself leave such knowledge to those who do not have to concern themselves with the greater questions in life,” Saber said with a smile once more. He was quite well educated in the great philosophers and the great thinkers of the world. Much of his time, when not spent learning how to run the family business despite his wishes, was spent pondering the meaning of life and the like. Of course, he tested various theories and thoughts in cruel ways, but beneath his layers of debauchery and demented nature, Saber liked to believe he was truly a thinking man.

And then their host arrived. Saber looked up from his snack and returned the creature’s shark toothed grin with one of his own. Finally, they would get to officially meet the mastermind of this game, if it were truly a game. There “meeting” a few minutes ago had not been particularly informative. As much as Saber enjoyed the puzzle of trying to figure out the game’s rules, he would also appreciate some guidance. At the very least, he would like to know the easiest way to win this, because he very much intended to win. If he ultimately lost, well, he would make sure to have fun along the way. Saber of course realized that losing the game probably meant losing his life along with it. But what was his life worth, truly? While he believed it was worth a great deal more than most people’s lives, he had often viewed it as something he was more than happy to lose in the pursuit of entertainment. If he was a proper Christian, then he probably should have feared the afterlife.

Thankfully, he had no such spiritual qualms. If he had a soul originally, Saber was fairly confident he had already lost it along the way. Who knew though? It was not worth Saber’s time to truly contemplate. Why should he work so hard in this life for a reward that he only received when he was dead? That would make this life awfully boring.

Setting

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Character Portrait: Linnet Mallory Character Portrait: James Butler Character Portrait: Hassen Heindrick Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Juliet Lockwood Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin Character Portrait: Andrew white
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#, as written by Mela
Mrs. Dante Valentine


“Well, then again, young men in such positions as mine should rarely need to know such a thing. We have other things to be concerning ourselves with and other things that occupy our thoughts. Young men such as myself leave such knowledge to those who do not have to concern themselves with the greater questions in life,” The young man said after her comment, and she merely looked at him, completely inexpressive as she’d taken to being after arriving in this place. She wasn’t quite sure what to think of him. He didn’t seem stupid, but then, children stemming from families with money rarely were; after all, there was the matter of education. But although she did not consider him unintelligent, she had a slight feeling that his arrogance would get him into trouble at some point. Arrogant people had this tendency to think they could do more than they actually could.

She tilted her head slightly to the side as she observed his every expression, the silence stretching between them. She really didn’t like him. There. That was the sad fact. She was captured in a house with some odd, red-eyed creature, a servant who could barely talk because the entire one side of his face seemed to have been cut in two at some point, a scared little girl who’d sat shaking in the corner, a hollowed out corpse, a boy who was probably dead from blood loss by now, and in the kitchen with her was another bloody corpse on the counter, and a spoiled rich kid who ate without a single concern. Honestly, what was her life coming to?

She did not speak to him again. For one, because she did not wish to, but honestly it was mostly because their apparent host entered the kitchen just then. She turned slightly in her seat to face him silently. "Good afternoon, Mrs. Valentine, Mister Cantin." He greeted them, his voice friendly in a way, yet the smile he offered along with it, made Dante’s skin crawl. He was no man. She was sure of it. She had never been one to believe in the supernatural. In fact, she had only ever considered it superstitions. Yet this… creature… could not possibly be human. He just couldn’t. Still, her distress did not show. In spite of how confusing this situation was, Dante knew that showing emotions was never going to help her with anything. So she stood, completely expressionless as she curtsied politely.

That was how she had been raised. Plain and simple. And hey, she figured it could not harm to do so. She drew in a deep breath, remaining standing as her eyes fell on the two he’d brought with him. More people who he had kidnapped? No matter, she would soon find out. He had addressed them, so perhaps he would at last diverge what the purpose was to all of this. Shaking that thought off for the time being, Dante analyzed the two newcomers, her eyes completely void of any emotion. She had not missed the way the young male’s eyes had watched both her and Saber, but just then his expression had changed from coldly calculating to innocent and friendly. The change made her wary. Especially as he then seemed to frown before remembering to revert back to the innocent front.

Hmm. So young, he seemed, yet his eyes, as much as he tried to hide it, were older than they should be. The female next to him had a stiff air to her. She didn’t seem all that tense, yet something about her reminded Dante of a predator about to strike. Her eyes flickered seemingly disinterestedly to the dead body on the counter to the newcomers again, only to land finally on Drake. Then, however, the boy spoke, asking her and Saber how they were. Green eyes slowly made their way to him. How was she? She watched him closely then. Not too good, honestly, but then… he didn’t really care about that, did he? His facial expression had ever so briefly flickered to something a lot less innocent, and Dante couldn’t help feeling like he was trying to be someone he was not. People did not shift like that if they were not trying to put up some front. His seemed very conscious, as opposed to her own odd façade, which came naturally and therefore did not flicker as such. She didn’t like it, and she certainly did not trust it. She had been around way too many people just like that.

But then, she supposed she could brush it off as though she had perceived the question only to be directed at Saber. After all, she wasn’t really too used to being addressed directly that way. As such, Dante said nothing, but instead redirected her gaze once more to land on Drake. The pale, tall figure was the only person whose words held any importance in this moment.

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Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Juliet Lockwood Character Portrait: Allease LaVera Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin Character Portrait: Andrew white
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The air in the room was tense, hushed. Everyone was trying to put on a show, it seemed. Mister Cantin was grinning, apparently eager to be initiated properly into the game. He had no idea what waited in store for him. Oh, but wouldn't it be amusing if he died with that selfsame smile on his face? The girl, Mrs. Valentine, was staring at him, her face inscrutable. She truly was a lady, wasn't she. How much longer would she be able to keep it up though? They'd had a calm first hour, he'd have to do his best to fix that. Little Mister White had adopted a polite, innocent voice, inquiring to the health of the others. No one responded. And there was another in the room, someone who Drake had no anticipated. Someone delightfully dead. He crossed the room, gathering her in his arms. Allease. Hassen had done a lovely bit of work on her skull with his weapon of choice, a thin bar of iron.

Her face was still contorted with surprise, apparently she'd thought herself safe hiding in her room. He pulled her off the table where she'd rested, and her feet slid down to brush the floor as he held her upper torso so he could examine her. The back of her dress was still torn, and bandaging could still be seen. The wound had begun to heal without a hitch, but it seemed that skin would never be whole again. satisfied with his servant's work, he folded her over his arm as if she was washing, her arms hanging down limply. She dripped blood from her wounds onto the floor. Yet another thing James would have to clean later. My, he really was getting behind. Silly boy. He'd been so busy playing with his little friend that he'd not done any of his chores at all. Oh well. Drake did not mind living in a bloody manor, though his guests might find it a bit disquieting. Finding corpses laying about really wasn't a pleasant experience for one who didn't regularly deal with them. Especially Lira's corpse, who'd had quite a number dealt to his chest.

After the short sidetrack, Drake brought his attention back to his guests. "Mister White has already heard the rules, so he may find himself something to eat if he wishes," he said, waving the young man towards the table the other two were standing around. "But I shall assume that Hasssen hasn't told the two of you anything, yes?" His eyes turned back to the man and woman, landing on Dante for an extended moment before flicking to Saber. "He's not much for rules, but he is very good at punishing those who break them." His voice was off-handed as he bounced Allease's corpse in his arm a few times.

"As you've likely already surmised, since you've met Lira's corpse, this is a game of last man standing. Or woman, of course." His eyes flicked back to Dante for a moment, skating over her features before returning to Saber's face once again. "Last person alive wins." That was technically not a lie, considering he would still be alive at the end of it all, and he'd win the opportunity to eat their souls. Probably not the kind of prize they had in mind though. "But if you dawdle your friend Hassen will make short work of you. He also won't like it much if you enter the library, or my quarters, or the closed door on the second floor. He's a lot faster than he looks. Which reminds me, don't kill my servants please, that isn't polite." Was that it? Yes, that seemed like everything.

"And I'll guess that you'd like some introductions, yes?" He pointed at Andrew and his servant. "That is Mister Andrew White and Miss Juliet Lockwook. You've already seen Miss Linnet Mallory, though she won't be around for much longer, the little spitfire, and Miss Elizabeth Richardson is probably hiding somewhere about here. And you've met both Hassen and James, the little scrap." Where had the two of them run off to anyway? Hassen had been accompanying these two, and James had been bleeding out on the floor. Maybe the lad took his little friend off somewhere? They played a bit rough, but was rather cute watching them hiss and scratch at each other. Silly little servants. Someone was going to loose an eye or a limb eventually, but for now Drake was ever so happy to spur their spats. Hassen was such a sweet little creature, but he was ever so mortal. James knew better than to hurt him badly or he himself would suffer the consequences.

Drake smiled fondly as he thought of the two servants before bringing his attention back to the matter at hand. "Do we have any questions, Mrs. Valentine, Mister Cantin? Don't hesitate to ask, I won't bite." The shark grin that had curled back up on his face said otherwise, and James's throat still held the evidence of just how sharp those teeth really were. He'd rested his other hand on the corpse's abdomen, which was bloated and pushed outwards since that part of her damaged spine rested right on his arm, and now he leaned against the bloodied table he'd found her on, examining the faces of the two humans like they were the most interesting creatures he'd ever met.

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Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Juliet Lockwood Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin Character Portrait: Andrew white
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#, as written by Mela
Mrs. Dante Valentine




Following her reluctant curtsy, Dante straightened, looking up at the red-eyed creature before her. He made her nervous, even the hairs on her arms were standing alert, as though they too could sense that this male wasn’t telling her everything. He wasn’t telling any of them nearly enough. In fact, he had still yet to say anything of any use, and she was too well-behaved to speak out of turn and outright ask him. Dante had been raised strictly, until the point at which she could no longer consider herself a normal girl. And then of course, she’d married her husband, who hadn’t particularly helped things. He was very adamant about her knowing her place and for her not to ever step out of line.

The redhead took a step back, lips parting slightly when the demon man turned and picked up the corpse which had so far been lying uselessly on the table. Her eyes never lost the matte expression, but still, it was a slight slip, and she slowly closed her mouth entirely again, staring at Drake. Was he going to say anything now? Because if he wasn’t, he might as well leave. Or better yet, she might as well leave. True, she knew that wasn’t going to happen. She probably wasn’t even getting out of her alive, no matter what she did, because no matter what, she now knew too much for them to let her go, and they weren’t going to trust her no matter how much she pleaded. Which meant that she might as well already be dead.

"Mister White has already heard the rules, so he may find himself something to eat if he wishes, but I shall assume that Hasssen hasn't told the two of you anything, yes?" Drake began after a little while, and Dante’s gaze cut briefly to the newcomers he’d brought with him. That had to be Mister White. Inwardly, Dante took note of everything, every single word he spoke, and every reaction on the faces of her fellow kidnappees. As her green gaze turned back to Drake, he was looking at her too, and that same chill took another dance up her spine. She drew in a deep breath, donning her indifferent mask more firmly.

"He's not much for rules, but he is very good at punishing those who break them." Drake then explained to them, causing Dante to take a few more steps back until she had a chair, which she sank down upon carefully. To anyone else, this would appear controlled and intentional, but to Dante herself, it was anything but. It was simple really; her legs shook too much to hold her up. Luckily, her long dress covered that perfectly.

He bounced the corpse on his arm a few times before he continued, casually explaining the sick, perverted game to them: "As you've likely already surmised, since you've met Lira's corpse, this is a game of last man standing. Or woman, of course. Last person alive wins." Her worst fears had just been confirmed, and Dante sank slowly, focusing on that simple, subtle action, because she couldn’t even make herself look around. She had enough of an idea about these boys, to suspect that their eyes were probably alight with predatory glee, or something of the like, right now.

With that, Drake began explaining the rules of this… deathtrap. "But if you dawdle your friend Hassen will make short work of you. He also won't like it much if you enter the library, or my quarters, or the closed door on the second floor. He's a lot faster than he looks. Which reminds me, don't kill my servants please, that isn't polite." Slowly, Dante’s mind became more focused, and she closed her eyes briefly, probably for the last time of her life, before she looked around, inwardly recoiling at the expression on Saber’s face. Oh yes, he was indeed the psychopath she’d assumed him to be. His eyes were alight, his entire face bright with excitement. A brief shudder shook her body then, filled with disgust and revulsion. Instantly, she moved her green eyes to watch the dead body, looking at the wide, surprised eyes.

The demon made introductions and Dante reluctantly took note of everything, but she couldn’t stop watching those eyes, no because she was excited or happy, but because she knew she was going to end up the exact same way. Her days were numbered. Even if she did “win”, Drake had spoken of no actual price, and she doubted very much that he was about to just let whoever killed everyone else go. Besides, it was obvious to Dante that this Lira, and the young Miss Mallory, had both been here longer than Dante and the three others. Two dead corpses today alone and they were the substitutes. How many more had already died and been replaced? Was there an end to this “game”? Or were they all to die in this house, little pieces in a game intended to amuse some insane, red-eyed demon-man?

Dante was drawn from her minor personal panic-attack, when Drake rounded off his speech by asking them whether they had any questions… followed by him telling them that he didn’t bite, which was no doubt a blatant lie. His sharp teeth told that, even if the way he smiled hadn’t. He wasn’t human, but he obviously enjoyed playing with the race. Perhaps he lived off of humans like… like a vampyr? Regardless, she had questions, but she did not think he would answer them, and she honestly didn’t dare anger him.

Then Mister Cantin spoke up and Dante almost cursed just then. Why did he have to be so… stupid? “Are we to be equipped with weapons, or do we simply have to improvise?” He simply said, as though that was the most normal thing in the world. Before the demon-man got to reply, however, Dante noticed Mister White and Miss Lockwood leaving the room, the male sending a lazy wave in their direction. Should she go too? Leave this imbecile with the demon-man? No, probably not. It could be that staying would earn her just a bit more knowledge, but she no longer felt comfortable sitting down, so she go to her feet slowly, on legs which she had managed to get back under control. For the briefest of moments, she wondered what her husband must be thinking of her absence.

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Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin
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Drake watched them both with dark fascination. Cantin was so excited, it seemed. Oh, he'd have to cure the human of that. Perhaps after he'd made good use of the man. Dante was still reserved. What was going on in that pretty little skull of hers? She was likely surprised. What other reactions could there be? She didn't seem like a sick creature, that little doe. She wasn't like the bored aristocrats that now littered the manner. Would she succumb to the villainy right away, or would she become a killer too? Like Miss Mallory. Drake's attention was pulled from his thoughts as Cantin spoke, a casual question. Drake watched him for a second, observing how White chose that moment to exit the room, his servant trailing behind.

"Ah, now there's a question." He said after another unnerving second spent staring at the human. "I do not have any weapons on hand, but I'm sure you might find some lying about the house. James always has a few to give away, or Lira might have one you can take. He has no use for it anymore anyway." Drake grinned, most amused. He took a few steps toward the man, red eyes flicking over the youth's face. "Some little mouse hoarded away all the kitchen knives though, what a shame. Though a butter knife forcefully in an eye socket does just as fine of a job, if you've got the stomach for it." He blinked at the man, stopping about a foot from him. His voice spoke that he didn't believe the man had it in him to make good of his bravado. A challenge. These cocky rich humans were all about proving themselves, weren't they? They flinched away at the sight of blood just as Lira had.

In a sudden moment Drake turned his attention to the woman. "No questions, Mrs. Valentine? You have nothing to fear from me, I won't hurt you." He said pleasantly, shifting the corpse in his arms again. It was flopping around in the most ungainly fashion, getting in his way. He kept accidentally stepping on the corpse's hand, which made the most annoying crackling sounds. "Though I can make no promises that no one else will harm you. Except for, perhaps, James. Judging by his affinity for Miss Mallory, he won't harm pretty little things such as yourself." At that he smirked. It was true though. The boy's romp with the foolish Frenchman, and now his desire to protect the little street rat? He had a need to protect the helpless, it seemed. That valiant idiotic little boy.

He moved to near the woman and examine her face a bit more closely, but accidentally stepped on the corpse's hand yet again. "Christ. Get out of my way." He muttered at the body, and in a fluid movement he tossed the body into the chair Mrs. Valentine had recently vacated. It hit the chair, head rocking back and limbs tangling in the air, then slumped into an almost natural sitting position. Drake wiped his hands against his waistcoat as if in a job well done then turned his attention back to the woman. "You see, I'm in an incredibly good mood at the moment, and it would be a shame to waste it, now wouldn't it, my dear?" His eyes were fixed on her in an almost predatory fashion.

It had been a long time since he'd played with a human. It was more fun to play with women, they seemed to get more worked up about things. Deget, Linnet, it couldn't possibly be that hard to push Dante into a bit of a visible panic, could it? He didn't believe so. He folded his hands behind him, walking a slow deliberate circle around her, eyes fixed on her the entire time. "So I'll ask again. Anything you'd like to say, my Lady?" It was quite obvious that Drake was enjoying himself. Then again, however, when wasn't Drake enjoying himself?

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Character Portrait: Dante Valentine Character Portrait: Drake Stuart Character Portrait: Saber Cantin
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Mrs. Valentine looked over at him and Saber caught that look of disgust. For a moment, something strange happened. He felt...bad? Was that the word for it? Something felt simply not right. But just like that, it was gone, replaced by that insatiable lusting for excitement and danger. Truly, what was the value of a human life? What was life anyway? That was a question that drove Saber to read the great philosophers, but he had found no satisfactory answer. As far as he could tell, there was no real reason why he was any different in his current state than that hunk of meat that Drake was holding. Sure he was a little more animated than the corpse, but why did that make them different? What was it that gave him that ability to move and speak? Was it his spirit? Whatever the heck that was. Maybe participating in this little game would help him find the answer to just that question.

For a moment, the creature called Drake simply stared at him and Saber began to wonder if there was going to be an answer. In response to the silent staring, Saber simply gazed back. There was no fear in his eyes, only curiosity. At the "man's" comment about Lira, Saber smirked for a moment. The corpse must be named Lira. Or it had been, before the life-defining-thing had been lost or turned off or escaped. Maybe it wasn't really even part of them to begin with. Maybe that life-defining-thing was simply something inhabiting them. When any particular meatsuit passed it's date of expiry, the thing simply jumped to a different host. Viewed this way, life was parasitic. It made sense, since life was a condition that was also terminal. No one could be cured of life. Maybe you could escape it somehow instead of just expiring. But that was a philosophical tangent for another time.

Right now Saber should be focusing on the murderous creature looking at him so intently and stepping forward. Oh, goodness. Now Drake was speaking. He probably had had such a strange expression on his face while Drake continued. Time to fix that an put on something more appropriate to the situation. Saber adopted an expression of interest and attentiveness. "It's not the stomach that I have to worry about in this particular situation, but rather the lack of strength. I can't say I'm particularly strong with a knife." A bold faced lie, but it did not matter. Saber had sensed the challenge to his abilities and sort of side-stepped the issue. He smiled slightly at Drake. He would not flinch away from blood. It was the best proof that something had been alive, he supposed. That liquid was what kept them all moving.

That crunching sound broke Saber's concentration. Did it really take such light pressure to break their very structure? Saber brought his hand forward and lightly pushed on the back of his own hand, testing the strength. They seemed durable enough, but perhaps once that life-giving-thing escaped you, the strength went with it. Curious. It would be something he may wanted to investigate further when he had the time. If he ever got the time. It was very possible that he may not escape this alive, but that did not seem to bother him. He supposed he may be the youngest "player" here and therefore have the most to lose. His father often argued something along those lines, so perhaps it was true to some extent.

While Drake's attention shifted back to Mrs. Valentine, Saber quietly pocketed a butter knife he had left off the table. Even a dull knife was better than none at all. In fact, even a spoon could be useful in a pinch. For a few moments, Saber simply watched the body as it slid into a sitting position. Curiouser and curious. Even without the life-defining-thing, a body seemed to want to move as it once had. This whole life and death business was too complicated to delve into at the moment. Finally, Saber shook his head slightly and broke his almost meditative thought process.

"As the lady clearly has no desire for my company any longer and you two appear to be having a conversation on your own, I will leave you to it." Saber said with a small smile. He bowed his head slightly. "Mrs. Valentine. Master Drake." With that, he left the room. He as curious about the other players. How would they be working this? While Saber was not the type of person to be the first to kill, he may have to. Truly, he would have preferred to simply sit back and let the others do the messy work for him for a bit. Then he would simply swoop in when needed and claim his victory. For all he knew, though, his victory only meant that he would be killed last.