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Aiden Harper

You never know which day is going to be your last, so make sure each one counts

148 views · located in New York City

a character in “The Once and Future King”, as played by Aftershock

Description

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Role:
Morgan la Fey

Name:
Aiden Harper

Appearance:
Aiden’s body has been shaped by his two favourite hobbies: surfing and martial arts. Tanned, muscled, and well-toned, he is very confident and comfortable in his own skin, walking with a sense of ease and litheness. He has deep, expressive green eyes, and prefers to keep his golden brown hair cut short. Though when he does let it grow out, it turns a lighter blonde, the wavy locks furthering his ‘surfer dude’ look.

Age: 18
Hometown: Sydney, Australia
Occupation: Student, Ambrose University
Sexuality: Straight

Personality:
Aiden is one of those friendly, cheerful people that’s automatically best buddies with everyone. Warm, funny and confident, he can also be surprisingly deep and personal. He’s never had a problem with girls or friends, and connects with all sorts of different people. He’s always got a warm smile, a mischievous twinkle in the eye, and a shoulder to cry on. Despite the intimacy that he tends to create with people, there are very few people he truly feels close to himself. Even if he were hurting, only a select few would ever see past the smile.

Opinions of others:
Arianna Trescott:

History:
Aiden grew up in Australia, living near Sydney. Smart, sporty, friendly, he was always a confident, popular kid. He got into surfing, music, footy (rugby), basketball, acting, martial arts, public speaking, community service projects, schoolwork, and was one of those people that seemed to excel at everything. He had a happy, supportive family at home, a large network of friends, and did pretty well with the girls. Life was perfect.

Even more perfect was Lory Beckett. Best friends since they were babies, they started dating halfway through 15. He was her first boyfriend, she was his fourth girlfriend. Surprisingly he was the one that was nervous as hell. Where the other girls only lasted a few months at most, Lory and Aiden were together for more than two years. Everyone said they were the perfect couple. But, naturally, nothing perfect can ever last. Lori started to get sick. It was little things at first, regular headaches, feeling tired and weak. But it got worse. She started coughing up blood and getting black outs, she became too fatigued to walk for long periods of time, and started experiencing intense pain throughout her body. The doctors were baffled. They had no idea what was wrong with her. All anyone knew was that she was slowly getting very, very sick. Throughout it, she and Aiden were inseparable. He was with her all the time, comforting her, reassuring her that it was all alright, and she’d be fine, and they’d get right out of here and be back to the lives they had planned. But Lori knew that wasn’t happening. She knew she wasn’t getting better. She made him promise that he’d move on, that he wouldn’t give up. She said it was alright that she wouldn’t get to live her life, and that it just meant Aiden would have to live his for both of them. They still studied together, still played guitar and sang together, did whatever they loved to do that she still could. Aiden spent most of that last month in the hospital room, even sleeping there with Lori. They’d both lie back, and she’d rest her head on his chest, and they’d just talk and talk and talk, until they fell asleep. They never ran out of things to talk about. But one day, Lori just didn’t wake up.

Aiden did what he did best. What he promised Lori he’d do. He went back to school. He aced the exams. He got a full-scholarship to Ambrose University. He smiled, and laughed, and talked, and acted as if nothing was wrong. One day Connor, a friend of Lori’s, called him out on it. He went on about how disgusting it was that Lori had died, and here was Aiden, partying it up as if he had never even cared to begin wi-

He didn’t get any further than that. Aiden lost it. He damn near killed the guy. After that it was so much harder to just pretend it was alright. He saw Lori everywhere. All her friends, her favourite places, things she’d say or do, anything. As soon as he could, Aiden was out of there, off to New York City, to move on.

He’s enjoying New York. Obviously he’s never going to forget Lori, but he’s able to keep living without her, and to move on.

Aiden and Lori
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So begins...

Aiden Harper's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianna Trescott "Arey" Character Portrait: Aiden Harper

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The chanting had long since stopped, and the silence that filled it's place deafened. Now was an important moment. This was a special place. Here, the barriers between the realms where thinner than anywhere else on earth. The isle of Avalon held it's breath. Arthur, the great king of England, had no breath to draw.

The silence was interrupted as a wooden door scraped open, soft footsteps indicating the return of the lady of the lake. She spoke gently. The importance of this moment could be felt in the air, and it seemed even she was humbled by it.

"The Queen of Northgales and the Queen of the Wastelands have departed."

"Good. They bore Arthur here with us, but now their part in this is done."

"Is he healed?"

Neither of their eyes left Arthur. The king was still clad in his battle armor, royal and fierce. He lay upon a golden bed, a place of healing and magic. His cape had been draped around him such that it hid the wound that even now was slowly draining on the kings life. Even in death, few living men would ever match the dignity that Arthur bore. Morgana gazed down upon her half brother, her expression unreadable. It took her a few moments to reply to the lady of the lake, yet just as the silence seemed ready to reassert itself, she spoke.

"No, Vivienne, he is not healed. The King will not survive this wound. Here he dies."

Vivienne's eyes narrowed in confusion, searching Morgana's face for some hidden jest. Yet she remained impassive, deadly serious. Confusion was replaced with suspicion at the death sentence.

"We four were tasked with delivering Arthur here to Avalon, for him to be healed, have you already turned once more against your own brother? I cannot allow your petty differences to claim Arthur's life."

Morgana's eyes narrowed in frustration at the jab, but she ignored it.

"Do not think to challenge me here Vivienne. This is my island. The sorceresses here are my sisters. You will not best me here." Vivienne's brow rose skeptically, as if willing to take that challenge.

"And you do not need to. Whatever misgivings I have had about Arthur, he is still my brother, and I do not mean to betray him now. Yes, Arthur dies here, but he will not pass on."

The lady of the lake paused, unsure of the enchantress's words. Morgana's eight sisters circled Arthur, and now every one had their eyes on Vivienne. Yet Morgana still did not take her eyes from her brother.

"Morgana, England needs him here. What do you mean he will die, yet not pass on? You are a powerful sorceress, but the power you speak of is beyond you." Vivienne said slowly, eyeing the ceremony about to take place carefully.

"England may need him, but there are greater needs than England. You know Excalibur's true capabilities. The day may yet come that such power is needed. And then, Arthur too will be needed."

"Morgana, the dark fey are sealed away. The sword need never be turned on any other than humans." Vivienne responded automatically. The thought of Savine or any other of the Unseelie court free was unthinkable. It couldn't happen.

Morgana finally turned her eyes away from Arthur, regarding Vivienne strangely.

"Yes, they are sealed for now. But they will not remain so. The veil weakens Vivienne. The isle of Avalon is at the center of it's weakness, and here I can feel it, moving and shifting. The day will come that the veil is weak enough to be passed through. I do not know when, and I do not know where. But I sense the center of the veils weaknesses will be elsewhere by then. If ever the dark fey stand a chance at escape, Arthur must be there, and he must wield Excalibur, accompanied by his knights."

Vivienne paused, watching Morgana carefully as she returned her gaze to Arthur.

"I understand what you intend, but for them to all return... even here Morgana, with all your sisters, this is beyond your powers. Such a spell is no simple feat." That kind of spell required a large sacrifice, and the will of the Gleaming behind it.

"No, it is not." Morgana said, as she slowly strode towards her brother, now surrounded by the circle her sisters stood in."And it comes with no small price."

Vivienne watched in silence as Morgana touched her hand to Arthur's forehead, and his wound was now mimicked by one that sliced into the enchantress's body. She did not even flinch, standing by her brother, as resolute and dignified in impending death as he was. As blood seeped out of her wound, staining her dress, Morgana once more looked at Vivienne.

"I must ask of you a part in this as well. Take Excalibur. It must be ready for Arthur's return. Hide it well Vivienne. Go now, before news of Arthur's death has suitors searching for the blade. My sisters will finish the enchantment here, then they will remain to care for the island. Should ever you need assistance in this though, you need look no further. They will help."

"What of you?" Vivienne's voice almost cracked, but she remained steady. Morgana had not always been a woman whose motives she trusted, but Morgana had never been evil, and Vivienne did not wish to see her perish. Honestly, she should be used to it right now, the lifetimes of mortals were just so short. Getting attached to them just invited pain.

"Most likely I will perish. I may get dragged through with them, but this spell is for Arthur and his knights, not an enchantress. If Arthur returns and I do not, tell him of this. All his life did I hate him, and yet after all I did he was ready to forgive me, and take me back. I never properly thanked him, nor apologized. This is both."

Vivienne stood in silence, golden eyes intense. Morgana stood by her brother, solemn and mournful, yet proud and dignified. She could be a confusing, contradictory women, both healer and dark witch. Yet Vivienne had nothing now to say to her. Silently she picked up Excalibur, carefully sheathing it. She began to walk out, but paused at the doorway.

"This will not be forgotten Morgana. You will be remembered." Vivienne promised.

"Yes, but for what?" Morgana said, a small, bitter smile on her face. "Go now Vivienne. My sisters must start the spell. I am not long for this life."

Vivienne turned and walked through the door, closing it behind her. That was the last time she saw either Arthur or Morgana.


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Aiden lay in his bed for a few moments, his expression one of confusion and concern. "That... was one weird ass dream." He sighed, rolling out of bed and rubbing his head. He looked around at the bomb-site that was his room, digging his pants out from under an empty pizza box from the night before. "Alright, that's it. Gotta lay off the parties. All these late nights are doing weird things to my head..." He picked his way through all the crap lying on his floor, making his way towards the bathroom. He managed to clear just enough space to open his cupboards and grab a fresh change of clothes on his way. "Man I really gotta clean this shit up... the hell did it all come from? Half of this probably isn't even mine!" He kicked a jacket out of his way, then nudged aside a lacy black thong. "That certainly isn't..." He eyed it quickly, then moved on, reassured. Definitely not a fat chicks thong. Awesome. Aiden knew how vain he sounded, but oh well, we can't all be perfect.

He'd managed to at least keep his bathroom clear, and the shower that followed were a glorious few minutes of blissful contentment. Whoever had invented hot running water through a shower-head deserved a fucking medal. After picking his way back through the tip his room had become, he made it out into the lounge of the apartment. Here at least was reasonably clean, if deserted. Louis had class now from what he remembered. 12th Century Lit I think. Why the hell anyone'd choose to study that though...

After chucking some frozen berries, bananas, spinach, cacao powder, pumpkin seeds and maple syrup into a blender, Aiden glugged down his breakfast and was out of the apartment. Fortunately the apartment was conveniently close to the university, so it didn't take long to walk there. He knew most of the people that he passed in one way or another, so his trip through the university was littered with constant little catchups, trading inside jokes or quickly catching up on the stories of what was new and who had gotten up to hilariously stupid stuff this weekend. The class would be starting soon though, so he didn't have long to chat with anyone.

Approaching his chemistry lecture hall, he spotted a familiar face walk in just in front of him. No way... he smiled to himself as he caught up with her. "Boo" he said, as he gave her a surprise hug from behind. Stepping slightly around her to be standing to her side, he grinned cheekily at Arey. "So first you take over my running route, and now you turn up to the same chemistry class as me? You know blondie, it's starting to seem like you're stalking me a little"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianna Trescott "Arey" Character Portrait: Myranda Emryssa Ambrosia Character Portrait: Aiden Harper Character Portrait: Louis DuCharme

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“Oh yeah.” Kat returned with an overly pleased grin. “I’ve read pretty much everything out there with a connection to King Arthur. That something you find interesting? King Arthur I mean. If you’re into medieval Queens, I heard Guinevere was hot.” Subtlety was not Kat’s strong suit, but even she realized waltzing on up to the guy and announcing he was Sir Lancelot du Luc, Arthur’s greatest friend, his wife’s lover, and the dude who inadvertently F’ed up Camelot, she’d was bound to get a less than desired reaction. Hopefully she could butter him up with a few flashbacks before trying a little voodoo flashy magic tricks to at least get him curious. Viv had told her with the veil this thin here, certain words could trigger flashes of memories from their past lives, and based on what Kat knew about this guy and the emotional attachment those three had held to one another, she was willing to bet “King Arthur” and “Guinevere” were his magic words. No pun intended.

Kat wasn’t a sensor, not like some of the other fart Fae kids she’d known growing up in the camp. She knew one girl who could sense a Faery, or someone whose great great great grandfather had been Fae, from the opposite side of the city; it was how Master Lucia had managed to find so many of them. Kat just talked to computers, which was admittedly helpful for an underground cult that kidnapped children when they had a four year old that could tell an ATM to spit out money to bankroll their operations without leaving a trail, but she couldn’t see into people and find Fae the way some could. Even so, even Kat could sense the Fae magic coming off the girl who just walked in. She had to be a half-blood at least Kat thought incredulously.

Kat jumped a little when the stones in her jacket pocket began going crazy, the shifted about, trying to get free. She dug them out quickly, only to watch as another stone began to glow a bright golden color. The stone shot through the air, only to stop a few inches away from the other girl’s face while making a soft chiming noise. “Well I’ll be damned…” Kat said with a chuckle. “Two in one day, I’m on fire!”

The stones Vienne had given Kat had been charmed by the crafty Fae herself as a way to track down all the souls from Arthur’s court that had returned to this world. They were imbedded with memories that Vivienne had of them all, and each stone longed to find its soul. Sure enough, now that Kat was in such close range, the glowing blue stone from earlier that she’d slipped into her jean pocket was struggling for freedom as well. She pulled it out gently, and the glowing blue stone too went floating towards its owner, if perhaps a bit more sedately.

“So much for gentle...” Kat sighed aloud.

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Practice that morning had been a bitch. Not to say Arey was out of shape, on the contrary, she was quite fit, but weight lifting was not her thing, and the gym exercises they’d done that morning after running had left Arey feeling sore everywhere. Maybe she’d go for a swim later she thought longingly. Swimming was much better the joints anyway, and there was something relaxing about water that she had always enjoyed. Later that night she decided, after class. Chemistry was not Arey’s best subject, but she was holding her own at the moment. Still, she wasn’t looking forward to one Professor Bates’ lectures. The man had a voice that could lull a pack of rabid dogs to sleep. When she was suddenly grabbed from behind, Arey jumped, and was surprised by the sudden instinct to strike out, but she relaxed instant when she recognized the voice.

“As I recall it, you were the one following me, barely keeping up really. So that may poke a few holes in that theory.” Arey said with a laugh to her recent impromptu running partner with a smile and laugh. She hadn’t even known Aiden went to Ambrose, so she was as surprised to see him as he was to see her.

“How long have you been going here?” Arey asked. She couldn’t believe she hadn’t run into him after sharing the same class, though this class alone did have three hundred students in it, and her social life was pretty nonexistent during soccer season.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianna Trescott "Arey" Character Portrait: Aiden Harper

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"Barely keeping up?!?" Aiden exclaimed in mock-horror, holding her shoulder as if to steady himself from the shock. "Oh, such harsh words from such a pretty face! You wound me." He chuckled, adding "besides, I could totally take you. I'd kick your ass in a race". Still wearing a playful, cheeky grin, he cocked an eyebrow at her challengingly as he spoke.

"Since the start of the year. Normally I sit way on the far side though, with Gina, Ashley, Blake and Snowball," he said, pointing over to a redhead with glasses, a half-chinese girl with gorgeous, long, thick, black hair, one of his surfer buddies, and a big black dude with a beanie, starting to walk towards. "Though I could hardly abandon my running buddy to the perils of Professor Bates boring ass lectures," he said, turning around to face her and walk backwards slowly. "C'mon, chill with us. I promise we'll be more fun than Batesy."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianna Trescott "Arey" Character Portrait: Myranda Emryssa Ambrosia Character Portrait: Aiden Harper Character Portrait: Louis DuCharme

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Arey scoffed good naturedly at Aiden’s boast, not believing it for a second. Aiden was an excellent athlete, that wasn’t a debate, but if there was one thing Arey could do, it was run. There weren’t many she knew who could out pace her on the field, and even as a freshman, Arey was the fastest girl on the soccer team, which was part of what made her such a devastating forward.

“I’d like to see you try.” Arey returned with a polite but confident smile that spoke volumes about her unwillingness to back down from a challenge. When Aiden tried to usher her over to his group of friends to sit, she was surprised that she didn’t feel the usual instinct to deflect. Arey was used to keeping comfortable distances with people, and there was currently a distinct lack of distance with Aiden. It was strange, because really they hardly knew each other, but Aiden felt familiar, and comfortable for that matter as well. It felt like she’d known her for much longer than the few weeks they’d been bumping into each other at the park.

“Well…” Arey hesitated, her eye catching Amanda in the front with their usual seats with Yasmin and Keily, who also soccer players. Arey’s social circles were dismally small. Amanda gave Aiden a quick look over before beginning to make obese gestures that had Arey’s face flushing.

“Why not.” She finished. There was no way she was sitting over with Amanda now, not with her roommate primed to start an inquisition into her none existent love life, which for Amanda would revolve around her equally none existent sex life. Perfect, she was definably going swimming tonight.

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“I’m working on it.” Kat replied in a voice that was meant to be joking, though she was actually quite serious, at Louis’ request for Queen Guinevere’s phone number. His own voice had been joking, but Kat’s keen eyes didn’t miss much, and the teenager had to pucker back a grin that was threatening to break out at watching him become hot and bothered by the mere suggestion of Guinevere.

“They’re not toys toots, and they’re not mine strictly speaking either.” Kat replied with a shrug, as if floating, glowing, soul seeking rocks were a normal occurrence to see.

“Hang on a second, we’re gonna need a bit more privacy if we’re gonna do this now.” Kat ordered dismissively while pulling out her smart phone. She began clicking away on the phone faster than any normal person should be able to, before looking up a few seconds later. “I just cancelled your next class. The e-mail from your Prof should be in your inbox now.” Kat announced, sounding rather pleased with herself. Honestly, university e-mail accounts were hilariously easy to get into.

“Hey Sasha?” Kat addressed her phone after a beat of silence. “This place has a computerized security system right?”

“Affirmative.” Purred a husky female computerized voice that made Kat grin every time she heard it. “Patch me through then.” Kat ordered before beginning to hack through the security terminal. “Lock down lecture hall 007.” Kat commanded once she’d broken in, and the doors to the lecture hall began closing and locked electronically.

Kat’s grin looked like Christmas morning. “Who needs magic, I’ve got the internet!” She was brought back to the task at hand though when the girl began asking questions.

“That, is a rock.” Kat began unhelpfully, shifting about until she was sitting on top of the seat rather and in it. Being so short, Kat enjoyed it when she was sitting higher up than everyone else. “But more specifically, it’s a memory. Yours.”

“Go on, touch it.” Kat urged Louis, her eyes shifting his way for a moment when she noticed he hadn’t taken it yet. His rock too had begun to chime, longing to be picked up but its master.

“To him, yes, you not so much. You’re my surprise of the day. Congrarts on that hot stuff. So wha d’ya see? I’m pretty curious to know which one you are?” Kat said with a wink. She had a guess of course, but she was keeping it to herself for now.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianna Trescott "Arey" Character Portrait: Aiden Harper

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Ooo, she likes a challenge. This'll be fun Aiden thought to himself. He lead Arey over to his friends, plopping down next to Snowball, bumping him on the shoulder in greeting. He gestured for Arey to come over, and take the empty seat on his right. The others looked up, curious to see who the new girl was.

"Hey Aiden, who's the hottie?" Blake said, not even bothering to be subtle about checking Arey out.

"You're always complaining about the chicks to dicks ratio of this group, so now we've got three beautiful girls to balance us three ugly dudes. This is Arey, my new running buddy. Arey, that's Gina and Ashley," -the girls both smiled and waved, then carried on talking to each other - "The dick-head with the hipster t-shirt is Blake" - Blake simply laughed, also giving Arey a little wave - "and between Blake and me is Snowball."

"They call me that cause of how white I am" Snowball said in the kind of voice that can only be described as a deep, black voice.

"Nigga please, we call you that cause of how fucking round you are!"

"'ey!" Snowball said, punching Blake. "Y'all said I needed to get into shape, so I did! Round!"

Aiden turned to Arey, leaving Blake and Snowball to their little scuffle. He lent in a bit closer, keeping the conversation between them. "You have some.. interesting friends" he said, pointing down towards the two girls that Arey had looked over at. "So what exactly does this mean?" he asked in mock-innocence, imitating one of the gestures that her friend had made.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianna Trescott "Arey" Character Portrait: Myranda Emryssa Ambrosia Character Portrait: Aiden Harper Character Portrait: Kearny MacWade

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“Pleasure to meet you.” Arey replied politely to Aiden’s friends, and laughed when appropriate at their jokes. They certainly seemed like a group of characters, Arey thought, and was unsurprised that they were Aiden’s friends. When Aiden leaned in closer to her ear, whispering teasingly, Arey was mortified by the red flush that crept up her face. Oh that was attractive, she thought derisively toward herself. ‘Why don’t you just paint a sign on your back that says virgin!’

“That my roommate’s a nymphomaniac.” Arey tried teasing back, though was noticeably embarrassed. Professor Bates called the class to session soon afterward, and Arey sat next to Aiden with his group of friends. Lecture as usual was dreadfully boring, and she spent the majority of the time trying to take notes while fending off mildly flirtatious joking about with Aiden, though she’d been doing a rather poor job of it. He received a text though halfway through lecture, and though apologetic, made a quick departure. It was a little more awkward sitting there without Aiden, but his friends were nice, and she didn’t regret the decision.

Class ended around 9:30pm and Arey was ready to head to the pool. She’d even convinced Keily to come with her, which in all honesty was probably for the best, since Arey preferred to work out at the older Armstrong fitness facility on campus. The newer Jordon Fitness center was larger, and much more modern, but it was also on the other side of campus and crowded. Armstrong never was, and it was also close to her dorm and the subway station, which was far more convenient in her mind. Arey was actually on of the few students who actually kept a fully stocked locker there, and the lack of student attendance at the facility showed. Part of her wondered why the university paid the upkeep on the building when it was so lightly used, but she was just happy that it remained open.

As expected, the pool area was deserted, leaving Keily and Arey to have the pool for themselves. They swam laps for what had to have been at least an hour, before Keily called it quits. “I’ll be behind you in a minute.” Arey promised from the edge of the pool. “I’m just going to do a few cool down laps.” Swimming was an escape she indulged in when she had a lot to mull over. Few other activities gave her the same cool level headedness to just let go and think the way swimming did, and she had a lot to think about today, which made her reluctant to get out just yet. After about ten minutes though, Arey knew she was pushing her luck, and began swimming towards the edge of the pool. She turned to get out after she’d taken off her cap and goggles, but was suddenly startled by the feel of a cold clammy hand gripping her forearm and yanking her back. She barely had time to let loose a scream before she was submerged in the water, cold hands holding her in a vice grip.

Arey thrashed in the water, desperately trying to break free of the cold gripping hands that seemed to be dragging her down further and further. Finally, a well-placed elbow jab let her jerk free of the hold, and Arey broke to the surface gasping for much needed air. She whipped about in the water, trying to get a glimpse of her attacker, but it was like they had simply disappeared. Arey was still on edge though, and as soon as she turned her gaze away, a head began to rise, seemingly from nowhere, out of the water. If the face that appeared before her had been monstrous, perhaps Arey would have acted differently. Maybe she would have tried to fight it, or swim away toward the edge of the pool, but instead she froze, unable to look away from the hauntingly familiar face that was so perfect and yet somehow terribly wrong. “Mum?”

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Kat groaned in frustration as Louis made a break for it, and Myranda mojoed her way out of the room after him, which somewhat confirmed Kat’s suspicion on whose reincarnation the lovely Afro-English girl was. That did very little to help her now though, and Viv was gonna be sooo pissed! They were both partially awakened, and Kat hadn’t been able to explain anything to them. There were too many dangerous things out there that had them on their radar for Louis and Myranda to be running around unprepared. But then so was rent-a-cop here apparently, hence her dilemma. That turmoil was suddenly squashed however, by a the sudden red flare of the stone she always kept in her front pocket. Kat was nowhere near blondie though, she was sure of that since she had the girl’s scheduled memorized. That then, could mean only one thing; the reincarnation of King Arthur, their world’s best hope, was in mortal danger of the fae variety, and currently that girl was defenseless. A cold grip of fear lanced through her at the sight of the frantically glowing red rock, and the decision was made for her.

“Not a student.” Kat growled as she began ordering the door to unlock manually from her phone. “Look, I need you to cooperate with me here for a second, since I obviously have no choice now but to involve you.” Kat said bluntly, her tiny vestiges of patience from before gone. “You see the glowing rock there? It’s magic, same as the girl who just poofed out of here. In fact, it’s a bit of your soul from a past life. No clue who you are, hell, you could be the friggin’ court jester or someone equally as useless for all I know. But you’re here, which means you’re meant to be part of sometime important, and right now there’s a girl in danger who it’s our job to protect, and you’re all I have. So you can either stand there and go on with your obviously unsatisfying little life, or you can grab hold of that rock there and follow me. Choose, right now, because I don’t have the time tonight to be a babysitter.” The door finally clicked open and Kat stood in the doorway posed to follow the red rock towards the danger, either alone or with the man.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianna Trescott "Arey" Character Portrait: Aiden Harper

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Professor Bates was as boring as usual, but that didn't bother him much, because he wasn't paying much attention anyway. He was too busy flirting with Arey, chatting and joking with her. He was actually really enjoying it. They got on so well, it was just easy. Not that he struggled much with girls anyway, but recently all he'd been looking for was casual hookups. Arey was different though. He felt so comfortable with her, almost familiar. He actually cared what she thought about him. Usually if a girl wasn't interested then it didn't matter, either he'd sway them or he'd move on and find another. No loss. But he found himself really wanting her to be into him. And she was. She wasn't bold enough to be outright about it, but Aiden could always tell when a girl was into him. He whispered something particularly flirty to her, and a blush crept up her face, again. Wow, she's really, really cute... Hmm, could this be a crush I'm detecting? She giggled, and looked at him with those beautiful, crystal blue eyes, returning his flirting. Yep, I'm totally into you. We're going out on a date. It's going to happen.

A sudden spasm seized Aiden's pocket. He was merciful, and removed the offending phone, relieving his phone of the violent shaking. He unlocked the phone, checking to see who the message was from. The message simply stated "Now", and was from an unknown number, one he'd never seen before. It didn't matter though. Even if the number was different each time, he knew who it was from.

He leaned over to Arey again, getting in one last little bit of flirting. "Hey, I gotta bail now. Sorry to leave you to deal with Bates without my wit and humor to cope with, but I'll see you tomorrow. You better be there. You'll be breaking my heart if you leave me to run all by myself." He stood up, stepping past her seat. "Try not to miss me too much now," he shot as he walked away, heading to leave the lecture room. He nodded at Professor Bates as he walked out, who acknowledged him with a dismissive wave. Aiden had near perfect marks anyway, so none of his professors minded much if he left early.

Aiden made his way to somewhere nice and discreet. The school had a lovely forested area, complete with a pond and several quaint looking benches. There was almost always some students to be found here, art students as often as not, but Aiden found a nice secluded spot. Casually checking around to ensure that no one was there, Aiden disappeared, clothes and all. In his place was a grey squirrel, completely inconspicuous. Normally he liked to drag out the process of shape-shifting, allow his magic to go about its work, smoothly feeling the transition from his form to another. But now he was in a rush. The squirrel shot up the tree, climbing it's way as high as it could. Once he got a good vantage for a take off point, Aiden shifted again. Although he usually tried to be something inconspicuous, today he felt like being a little flashy. And nothing said 'Fuck Yea' quite like a Bald Eagle.

He launched himself from the tree, flying out over a stretch of concrete to catch the thermal rising off the hot surface. This is what eagles were made for. Riding thermals, soaring up higher and higher. Flying was just... wow. Words can't begin to capture it. Sometimes, he'd even go so far as to say it was better than sex. Well, it was close. Hell, there were days that he'd just disconnect from the whole word, swap shapes and spend hours up here, rising off thermals, soaring around and then dive bombing towards the ground. Sadly, this wasn't one of those days. He flew through Manhattan, towards 157 West 57th street, aiming for the open window on the 83rd floor. So much better than traffic he thought, letting a splattery little eagle gift drop down towards some poor unsuspecting person below. Hehehe, I'm such an asshole... He tucked his wings in, darting through the window. The moment he was through he fanned out his large wings, beating hard to cancel out his momentum.

He shifted back to himself, choosing to appear in a tasteful suit. It was a modest, elegant suit, though well-made and expensive looking. He wore no tie, instead leaving the top few buttons of the shirt open. He was clean-shaven, with hair that was well-styled and looked freshly cut. That was one of the advantages of shape shifting. No need to pay for clothes or a haircut ever again. He'd shift into whatever look he felt like. He looked around, but there was no one to be seen. There was no point wondering through the apartment though. The damn thing was bigger than his house, and besides, his 'friend' would appear the moment he wished to. Aiden spread his arms out, calling to his mysterious 'friend'.

"C'mon buddy, no need to be shy. I ain't gonna bite ya."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianna Trescott "Arey" Character Portrait: Myranda Emryssa Ambrosia Character Portrait: Aiden Harper Character Portrait: Louis DuCharme Character Portrait: Kearny MacWade

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“I see you’ve mastered your shape shifting abilities quite nicely Aiden. I’m glad to see our lessons haven’t been going to waste.” A voice replied that seemed to echo throughout the room, and a tall lean figure seemed to melt out of the shadows and into the room. He too wore a suit, though it was the kind a university professor might wear to class, not a party. His hair was dark and well groomed, and a pair of glasses seemed to magnify the intensity of his dark brown eyes. He appeared to be in his late thirties, though in impeccable shape, and he seemed to hold an air of nobility about him.

“Took him long enough to get here.” Another voice grouched when one of the doors to the side rooms opened, revealing a boy with sandy hair and grey eyes who held a rather prickly disposition.

“Now now Alan, Aiden made quite good time from the chemistry building. I’m very pleased with his progress thus far.” Aiden’s friend said with a light smile that didn’t reach his dark eyes.

“If we’re done with the kudos party here professor, can you get to the point of why you called us here? I have an exam tomorrow morning I’d actually like study for.” Alan returned, with a raised brow that managed to look both bored and annoyed.

“Yes, I suppose we do need to move this along.” The professor replied thoughtfully. “Things are about to get interesting boys, and you’ll both need to have your guard up.”

“What do you mean?” Alan asked, looking serious as ever.

“As you have both been made aware, New York City is currently within the thin zone of the Veil that separates our world from that of the Fae. That makes magical activity more potent here, and allows for the occasional lower class fae to slip through the veil unnoticed into our world, which is why we see so many of them here.” The professor began.

“Yeah, pretty basic stuff here.” Alan commented lightly.

“Well tonight, there’s been a tear in the veil. It’s repaired itself now, and it was only in the outer rings of the prison, but for twenty four minutes and fifty three seconds, there was a passage between the worlds that allowed Fae in freely.” That caught Alan’s attention, and he was suddenly much less grumpy at being called here.

“Wait, so you’re saying a bunch of unseelie took a Disney fast pass into New York?” He exclaimed incredulously. New York was already a hot spot for Fae activity, part of why there were so many crazy people in this city, but with an open channel between the worlds popping up here, there was no telling how many had gotten through.

“Not the term I would use, but yes. The number of dark Fae in New York has gone from a few dozen to several hundred this evening, and you will both need to be careful, as well as expedite our efforts in acquiring the sword. It is imperative then that we protect Arthur’s reincarnation from these Fae. He’s the only one who can retrieve the sword, and the Fae that have just been unleashed will be starved and looking for strong souls. The two of you, and every other reincarnated soul from Arthur’s court for that matter, will be a target, so you will also need to be cautious.” The professor explained sedately.

“Any questions?”

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“You’ll know her when you see her.” Kat promised before turning to run after the red rock, hiding a smile of satisfaction. He had to be a knight she decided. The willingness to follower her to protect Arthur was instinctual, made even stronger by the residual memory stirring the part of his soul that remembered Camelot. She’d figure out exactly who later, but for now she was content to have one of the knights at her back. It was uber cool man!

The students who spotted them running after the rock gave them strange looks, but shrugged and dismissed them for the most part. It made Kat roll her eyes, but then she wasn’t surprised. It seemed like humans these days would go to great lengths and even delve into the absurd to explain away what they didn’t understand. A pathetic habit that had gotten more than one human killed by the supernatural. Ignorance most certainly was not bliss when dealing with creatures that thought of you as food in one way or another. Kat had been so wrapped up in those thoughts that she almost missed that at some point the students weren’t even looking at them anymore, and upon closer inspection, she realized why.

“The hell?” Kat thought out loud, grabbing the red rock and halting in her pursuit. Everything around them was unnaturally still, frozen as if time itself had been stopped. Saving blondie was high priority, but this wasn’t something she could ignore either. Where was Vivienne when she needed her, Kat thought desperately, suddenly looking very much like the lost overwhelmed fifteen year old that she was. She took a deep breath, and the overconfident smart alec mask was back in place. Was this a fae’s doing? It would take an incredible amount of magic power to pull something like this off, no fae she knew of in the city outside of maybe Vivienne had the juice for this as far as Kat knew, but one thing still nagged at her. Why were they not frozen now too? Was it because they entered the stopped time zone after the spell had been casted, or was it something else entirely? Kat didn’t know, but they needed to keep moving. She was also startled when she let go of the red rock and it began shooting off in the same direction as what Kat sensed was the center of the magic. Maybe if it was Fae, then that was what was threatening blondie. In that case, they had to hurry.

“Come on!” Kat called behind her as she took off to make sure the knight was following.

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This couldn’t be real Arey kept telling herself numbly. Her mother, Irene Trescott, had been dead for years. There was no way her mother was in a campus pool in New York City with her right now. It was not possible. But there she was in front of Arey, with soft blue eyes and soft blonde hair looking healthy and almost too perfect. Unbidden, moisture began gathering in her eyes, and Arey began to outstretch a shaking hand toward her mother, afraid to believe it was true. Everything felt so cold and Arey felt disoriented. It was like a shift in the universe had just occurred, and the painful wound of losing her mother that she’d mostly healed from was suddenly ripped open and fresh once again. Tears were flowing freely down her cheeks now, and her fingers could almost touch her mother’s skin when she heard a mournful scream coming from the locker room. She knew that voice.

“Keily?” Arey breathed, turning her head toward the locker room in concern, and suddenly it was as if a spell had been broken. When Arey looked back at her mother, it was no longer the face of Irene Trescott she saw, but a decaying milky white one with soulless black pits where there should be eyes. Arey screamed, withdrawing her hand as if burned and began kicking back frantically toward the edge of he pool. The monster that had looked like her mother followed, but was much slower, and Arey had grabbed her towel and bolted as quickly as possible on the wet tile toward the locker room before the monster had even made it to the side of the pool.

“Keily!” Arey screamed out frantically for her friend, put on edge by her friend’s scream and the pursuit of the monster from the pool. She finally found her in the corner of the locker room, sobbing uncontrollably as a little boy in a stripped Blue’s Clues sweater sat next to her, holding her hand. With a start, Arey realized that was Keily’s dead brother. Keily had confided in Arey once that she’d always felt responsible for the car crash ten years ago that had killed her parents and little brother. She’d been fighting with her brother Thomas in the back seat when their father had taken his eyes off the road to tell them to stop and they’d been T-boned by a truck. Keily had been eight, and it was not her fault that souped up Dodge Ram had run a red light, but then grief did funny things like that.

Regardless, that thing holding Keily’s hand couldn’t be her brother anymore than the thing in the pool was Arey’s mother. Arey lunged at Keily, grabbing her shoulders and yanking her away from that thing wearing her brother’s face, and like the monster from the pool, it’s face began to shift into something monstrous, but this creature began to hiss like an angry snake as well.

“Run!” Arey, cried, grabbing Keily’s hand and running for the exit. Keily at least was dressed, though Arey wasn’t nearly so fortunate. If she wasn’t so terrified at the moment, Arey might be embarrassed to be running about campus in nothing but her bathing suit and a towel, but she felt the chill night air either way. They had made it a short way to the edge of campus where their dorm was, when suddenly Keily was jerked to a stop, Arey turned back, expecting to see one of the monsters from the pool, but they weren’t on them yet.

“Keily come on!” Arey shouted frantically. Keily didn’t respond, in fact, she didn’t move at all. It was like she’d suddenly stopped in mid pose of running. A look of terror was still painted on her face, and shiver that had nothing to do with the chill air traveled down her spin. Arey grabbed her friend’s hand, trying to force her to move, but it was like she was a statue made of stone. When Arey began to hear the angry hissing, not far away, she renewed her effort anyway, frantic to get away but unwilling to leave her defenseless friend. “SOMEDOBY HELP US!”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Aiden Harper

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Aiden Harper


"Bite me" Aiden shot at the cranky Alan. "Or, better yet.." he replied, warping his mouth into a monstrous jaw, with thousands of needle sharp teeth. "How about I bite you?" he said, snapping his jaws together.

He warped his face back to normal, and listened intently to what the professor had to say.

"Yea, the thin zone in the veil... that's called Avalon isn't it?" Aiden wasn't quite sure where he'd seen that particular name before, but it seemed right. Must've read it in one of the professors books, the kinds he wasn't supposed to be reading. Oops. Maybe he shouldn't have said that. Oh well, moving on...

He wasn't particularly scared at the idea of some low-class unseelie running around. It'd be interesting to test out his abilities on them. What did worry him was what they might do to all the defenseless people without magic... he'd have to keep an eye out for any. Any one that ran into one would need help. The professor finished off, and though Aiden was keen to leave, he did have a couple of questions.

"Yea, I have a few. How the hell are we supposed to find Arthurs sword? Or his reincarnation? And how do we hunt down these unseelie that got through?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Arianna Trescott "Arey" Character Portrait: Myranda Emryssa Ambrosia Character Portrait: Aiden Harper Character Portrait: Louis DuCharme Character Portrait: Kearny MacWade

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The professor’s eyes flicked over to appraise Aiden thoughtfully, but made no comment on the curious matter of his unexpected knowledge. “Yes, Avalon is a name given to this zone, though few have ever realized that Avalon is a weak point in the veil that moves over time, and not a physical place. At least not in our world.“ The professor elaborated for Alan’s benefit who, as a non-magic user himself, was looking rather uninterested by the brief history lesson being given.

“We don’t, or rather there isn’t any point.” The professor began, answering Aiden’s questions in order. “We already know where the sword is, but without Arthur that information is useless.”

“As for finding Arthur, we’ve narrowed the field considerably, but I’m afraid we don’t have quite the raw resources in that field that some of our competition enjoys.” He said dryly in a voice that held a touch of annoyance as he walked over to the innately carved wooden desk and pulled out a large file from the locked middle drawer. He ushered the two boys over to the desk before opening the file to reveal a series of profiles that included picture ID’s.

“Reincarnated souls are always attracted to Avalon, whether it is on a conscious or subconscious level is debatable, but we know for sure our Arthur is in the city. While our tacking techniques are not quite as…accurate as others, I’m confident it is one of these young people.” The professor explained as he began flipping through the pages, showing them the pictures and names.

“Joseph Mendez…Deidre Evering … Camille Jones…Kyle Andrews… Louis DuCharme who was a particularly strong match, and…Arey Trescott. Each are students at the university and their souls held the closest thing to a match we can measure with our magic. All of their souls are very strong, and they are almost certain to be targets for the dark fae.”

“As you are already aware, the fae, any fae, are immortal. Without the sword we have no way to actually kill them. That being said iron, the purer the better, is painful to the touch for them. It won’t kill them, but it can repel them well enough.” He informed his students before grabbing two neatly scrolled books off his shelf and handed a copy to each of them. “Certain fae have their own quirks that can be used to repel them as well. Read up.”
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Having the world around her frozen in mid-motion ranked as uber creepy on Kat’s weirdness scale. There weren’t a lot of things she knew of that had the juice for this sort of spell, and none of them were particularly friendly. Perhaps it was this tense expectation that left Kat feeling so flabbergasted when she felt the source of the magic and spotted both Louis and Myranda just ahead. Sweet baby Jesus, how had she managed to pull that off.

“I-I think this may be my fault.” Myranda said shakily to Louis. It was obvious he was trying to explain this away, but this was simply too crazy. These people weren’t just staying still, there was a complete absence of motion that wasn’t natural. A little ways away in one of the trees by the sidewalk, there was a pigeon frozen in mid-flight. God, why was this happening to her? Myranda felt on the verge of a panic attack when the strange young girl from earlier came rushing up with the campus security man at her back.

“Please-I don’t know how to make it stop.” Myranda said shakily, hoping somehow that this strange girl who seemed to know so much would know how to fix this. Kat however, was at a loss. Despite living with a fae, who occasionally had the documentation proclaiming herself as Kat’s legal guardian, magic wasn’t really Kat’s thing. She could talk to computers, and knew enough about magic to get about in that world, but a great practitioner she was not. They needed Vivienne to fix something like this…

“You’ve gotta relax. If you summoned this magic to begin with, you can make it stop. Keep telling yourself you’re in control and stay calm.” Kat tried, parroting advice she’d heard Vivienne give hundreds of times. She might have said more if not for the scream.

“SOMEBODY HELP US!” The scream wasn’t very far away, and the stone in her hand began glowing in a frantic way that put Kat of edge. “Crap.” Kat growled before releasing the stone to follow it as it zoomed up the path. “Come on!” She called back at the small group, expecting at least rent-a-cop to follow.

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Arey was beginning to panic. In the course of an hour, her world had been turned upside down, and she suspected it was a potent combination of shock and adrenaline that had gotten her through so far. Kylie was frozen. Everything around her was frozen Arey noted with a sinking feeling of dread. Everything except for herself and the hissing monster who seemed to enjoy stealing the faces of dead loved ones and was presently advancing toward them as she stood there like a right scared ninny. She didn’t know what she was supposed to do, and it was a terrifying feeling. Arey was a compulsive planner, she had objectives and game plans constructed to reach them. This sense of helplessness and being out of her depth left her feeling more exposed than the lack of dress she was currently in. She watched like a deer in headlights as the monster approached, and was almost upon them, and suddenly all she could feel was a nipping cold.

Her world was snow, and the once sparse trees around her grew denser and bare. A forest she thought distantly before her conciseness faded to the background. A young man and a boy were walking in the woodland, picking up felled branches as they went. The man held a serious and almost sour expression while the boy was all youthful enthusiasm and bright smiles.

“Please Kay please! I’m eleven now, plenty old enough to learn!” The boy pleaded to the young man who gazed back disapprovingly.

“Hardly so Arthur, you haven’t even been trained with a sword yet. It would be inappropriate for you to be my squire.” Kay replied, though seemed to soften somewhat at the dejected look the young Arthur wore. “Besides, you know father disapproves of you fighting.” Kay added in his defense. The young boy’s face chanced to something almost defiant then, that fact being an obvious point of contention within the family.

“If father had his way I’d be shut up in a tower somewhere with only some dusty books and a window to keep me company.” Arthur said almost bitterly. He could never understand why Sir Ector had always treated him as if he was somehow fragile. Even the most minor of boyhood scrapes and scuffs seemed to send their father into a fussing mess. “But what if the Saxons come Kay? You’ll be off serving whomever is crowned the new king as his knight, and father is getting older. Someone will have to fight them off!”

“Yes yes, and a fierce warrior I’m sure you’ll be.” Kay said indulgently, though internally he did concede Arthur’s point. It was better the boy know how to fight and hopefully never need to do so, than to be forced into one and not know how to defend himself. “Very well pick up your weapon.” Kay said calmly as he laid his pile of sticks on the ground before picking up a nice sturdy long one for his weapon. The boy did the same, but with a whoop for joy and with much more haste.

The two brothers squared off, Kay first showing Arthur how to approach and strike before allowing him to try against his older more experienced brother. Kay was somewhat surprised by how quickly Arthur seemed to pick up the basics of footwork and technique, but he was still easily misled by Kay’s feigned movements. “Watch my hips, not my feet Wart.” Kay said almost affectionately, though in his gruff sort of way.

The pair continued like that a while, parrying and striking until Kay finally managed to knock the stick from Arthur’s hand. Then Kay lunged forward, and Arthur put his arms up defensively and closed his eyes to brace for the impact. A light tap on the head was all that came, and Arthur slowly opened his eyes.

“Never take your eyes off your opponent Wart. You always have a weapon in your fists. If you lose your sword, use them. If you are unarmed, don’t lunge forward. Wait until the last possible moment and move to the side. Use their own strength and movement to get them off balance. Then you can crack them a good one to the head.” Kay lectured, forcing Arthur to make eye contact. “Now you try. Then perhaps we’ll discuss you being my squire in London.”

“Ahhhhhh!” Cried the boy Arthur, practicing against a fake opponent. Arey watched as he made the movement to the side and then struck out with his fist to strike his imaginary enemy, and suddenly the scene began to fade away.

She heard the same battle cry as from the boy ringing in her eyes, but it was coming from her own throat, and she came to herself just in time to watch her own fist connecting with the side of the monster’s face, sending it back a few steps. What had just happened? Arey felt so confused and disoriented, and it showed on her face. Then out of nowhere there was a glowing red rock in her face, and she had a sneaking suspicion that this should disturb her more than it was. Maybe she really was in shock.

“Nice hit blondie!” Shouted out a young girl, wearing seemingly the epitome of geek chic, who came jogging up behind her. “We got it from here.” She assured as a small group of people followed behind her. The girl quickly rummaged through her bag, pulling out two pieces of twisted black metal that looked more at home with a rod iron fence or Renaissance fair than in anyone’s backpack. She kept one for herself and tossed the other to the younger man in the group.

“I’ve got a feeling you’ll know what to do with it.” The girl said with a grin towards the boy before turning to the older man who looked like a campus security officer. “Bullets will sting them, but iron’s better. Just try and keep them away from her.” The girl said gesturing back to Arey. “She can’t defend herself yet.” The remark left Arey feeling oddly indignant, despite the numbing shock she was feeling. She almost wanted to call the kid out on it too, but there was no time. The second monster that had been wearing her mother’s face had arrived, and both were now advancing on the group. The young girl wasted no time jumping into the fray to whack one of the monsters with her iron rod. There was an odd noise when the rod connected with the monster's flesh that reminded her of sizzling bacon, and the creature howled after the impact.

“Ha! You little girls coming or what?!” The girl shouted with a manic grin as she took another swing at the hissing faceless monsters. Arey was passing positive that she was going mad.