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Lorena McCoy Creery

How much longer can I possibly avoid revealing the truth?

0 · 188 views · located in White Chapel, London circa 1886

a character in “Those With The Iron Touch.”, as played by Shané

Description

Image


BASICS


Image{


FULL NAME
}

Lorena McCoy Creery

{ AGE }
22

{ GIFT OR MUTATION }
Animal Telepathy




WHAT DO YOU LOOK LIKE?


Image{ HEIGHT & WEIGHT }
Lorena is just over average height for a woman and has a slight build.

{ APPEARANCE }
A soft pale face framed by dark brown waves of hair Lorena is well known for her pretty looks. She has light brown eyes that flash like amber in the sun. Her face is quite round, with full lips and a healthy pale complexion. Her hair is usually pinned back in a neat, yet stylishly messy way allowing for slight wisps of hair at the side.

In following with the popular aristocrat style of the time she often styles the soft brown corsets, jackets and skirts with the soft white shirts. Lorena is never seen leaving the house without her accessory hat nor her Victorian pendant. With her hour glass figure and alluring smile, Lorene is not often in want for attention.



WHO ARE YOU?


Image{ SEXUALITY }
Heterosexual

{ FAMILY }
Father- Sir Joseph McCoy Creery
Mother- Lady Elanore McCory Creery
Elder Brother- Jonathon McCoy Creery



{ PERSONALITY }
She's an outspoken and proud personality. She's the first to speak up and the last to quiet down. She's always been known for being headstrong and quick witted, if not a little impulsive. From an outsiders perspective she often comes across as posh and stuck up following her family lineage, but to those that know her she is caged bird that's just beginning to fly. You never have to guess what Lorena thinks of you, but for all her upfront bravado she's actually quite terrified and insecure about her abilities. She's generous and kind-hearted but a little naive when it comes to the world outside her front gates.

{ LIKES }
~Calligraphy~Literature~Writing~Classical Music~

{ DISLIKES }
~Illiterate people~Ignorance~Casual clothing~Her suitor~

{ FEARS }
Her father finding out what she is.
Being forced to remain in the house.
Losing contact with the rest of the group


{ GOOD HABITS }
Always takes action.
Continuously motivating people.


{ BAD HABITS }
Correcting peoples grammar
Refusing to admit when she's wrong




History

Image{ HISTORY }
Lorena was born into the aristocracy. She grew up with her family having a strong expectation of learning culture, literature, history, art and music. As such she has a lot of scholarly knowledge and grew up with the aspiration to learn more. Her father is extremely strict expecting only the best from both his children and requiring consistent grades and poise. Her mother is very much the stereotypical aristocrat always attending the parties and expecting presentation to be on the forefront of both Lorena and Jonathan's mind.

Both her parents genuinely love their children despite their high expectations. Lorena grew up with the constant nagging of her mother begging her to tone down her impulsive personality and to 'somehow force her unsightly personality to match her outward appearance'. Needless to say Lorena tried and failed. So she gave up altogether, but it has become more of an issue with her mother and father trying to set her up with someone of an 'appropriate family and nature.' Currently her days seem to be spent either hiding in her room, meeting with the other Iron Touched or avoiding her suitor. Quite frankly if her mother's opinion is anything to go by, as soon as she opens her mouth he'll leave.

She's terrified her father will somehow find out about her 'unearthly' abilities. She's seen his reaction to the taken and his firm hatred of anything unnatural frightens her. She's not sure if his love for her would be able to overcome his dreadful ideas of the eradication of the abnormal.



OTHER

{ FACE CLAIM }
Natalia Filvarova

{ COLOR }
Honey Brown

{ THEME SONGS }
[url]Rabbit Heart – Florence and the Machine[/url][/center]

So begins...

Lorena McCoy Creery's Story

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery

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#, as written by Shané
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There was a small creak from the stairs and Lorena inwardly winced. Carefully peering around she assured herself that her attempts to remain undetected had not yet been foiled. Again she glared back down at the staircase. Of all the families in London, theirs should at least be able to afford to keep the stairs in decent repair. Yet the wooden boards were getting old even as they gleamed and appeared well kept. Refusing to back down to the wooden slats, Lorena took a deep breath and decided that quicker was better than slow and steady. Hurriedly she took the stairs almost two at a time berating herself repeatedly when a small squeak was heard.

She'd just about made it to the floor of the great stairway when she heard her name being called. She froze, immediately recognising the voice. Her back turned to the young man coming to the stairs from above, she rolled her eyes grimacing in distaste before taking a deep controlled breath and plastering a 'pleasant' smile on her face.

"Yes?" she asked civilly as she turned, careful to keep her voice devoid of the annoyance that was bubbling inside her. She couldn't afford to be diverted from her plan now.

"I thought perhaps we could take a stroll in the grounds this afternoon?" He enquired politely.

I'm trying to make a list of things that I would find more distasteful, and I'm finding it peculiarly small Lorena secretly answered, before verbally making a more suitable response.

"Unfortunately I have a few thing to attend to in town, and am in a bit of a hurry."

As you can very well see! She thought, glancing down at the satchel dangling in her hand before looking pointedly back at him.

"Well, it's just we haven't really had an appropriate opportunity to get to know each other, and-"

"We'll just have to do it another time." She interrupted sounding overly cheerful to hide how uninterested she was. And then she walked off, quickly passing by the butler as he opened the door for her. She ground her teeth slightly as she could swear she could hear her mother's scathing lecture on how a lady never interrupts nor turns her back on a gentlemen. Gentleman my foot! Continuous unwanted attention constitutes stalking in my opinion.

She quickly hurried over to the coachman.

"Fringe of White Chapel."

He raised his eyebrows somewhat at this, but hurriedly Lorena continued slipping a coin into his palm.

"For your discretion."

She gave him a pointed look, before getting into the back. Her nerves were afire with anxiety. Last time she had been in Chapel had been a mistake. She'd wondered into the rabbit warren after looking for a particular shop that had been recommended by a friend. Quickly finding herself in the district, she'd decided on a hasty exit but could no longer recall its whereabouts. It had been late afternoon and the hours quickly waned into evening and her panic must have been a sight to see.

Finding herself at a loss for what to do she'd attempted to call on the help on a few stray animals here and there, but none knew of the upper streets and upon feeling her distress decided not to leave. It was all very well for them to attempt to help, but they had advertised to the world exactly what she was. No upper class lady had a motley group of around ten animals trailing in their wake. That was when Julian and Billy had shown up. A wry smile came over her at the memory. She hadn't exactly been all that civil and the two dogs had followed suit. However she'd quickly requested they stop their growling when there was an offer of being lead out of the slums. Knowing that she really didn't have another option, she'd accepted their offer and thanks to her obvious way with the animals, both men had revealed their own affiliation with the Iron Touched. At that point she'd immediately decided to meet with them again.

With all the disappearances in White Chapel perhaps it was not altogether wise, but she had enough of her worries at home. She needed the support for if her father found out….Lorena let the thought drift off deciding not to finish it. Besides she had come prepared. Maestro her personal traveling companion would not be fair behind if any of the group decided to cause problems. Even so her nerves were not abated as the carriage pulled up just on the outskirts.

She tried to ignore some of the stares as she got out and waved away the coachman. He'd be back for her before evening. Pretending not to be aware of the many eyes on her she began to navigate the streets. She'd tried to be tactful and choose something that wouldn't stand out too much by way of attire, however it wasn't all that easy considering her wardrobe. To distract herself she channelled all her energy into finding the address she'd been given.

***


After about half an hour she admitted defeat. She was sure she was on the right street, but places had no numbers making it impossible to find. Furious at herself for once again making herself vulnerable she discreetly began looking for someone to ask that didn't look like they'd pick her pockets or drag her off the streets. She wasn't liking her options when another woman stepped out on the street looking decidedly determined about it. Deciding not to waste the opportunity Lorena strode up to the darker woman.

"Sorry to interrupt you, but I am looking for directions to 14 Millers Court?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery

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It didn't take long for Mila to run into someone, thankfully the woman seemed nice, perhaps a little lost.
"Sorry to interrupt you, but I am looking for directions to 14 Millers Court?"

. She was pretty soft brown hair, pale skin, eyes brown like collected honey. Mila smiled. Both of her eyes matched. Mila's eyes didn't always match, sometimes one was blue, then the other green, or brown sometimes, they would be all one color but never the same all the time. Father said she was still changing.


Mila reached up and touched her face. [/color]

[color=teal]”You are really pretty.”She breathed, her voice the sound like a child speaking through a victrola, popping and cracking like it was recorded and played back. Her breathing was hollow sounded as well, a soft hum like a steam through a pipe, and if listening closely, one could hear a faint ticking, like a clock.

She pulled her hand away. "Oh, I'm sorry, I'm not supposed to do that, Father says I shouldn't do that to people I've never met..." Mila said sheepishly and gave a curtsy. "My name is Emilia Janye, but my father calls me Mila, you can to if you like." Father would be proud, right? She was making a friend. The girl seemed nice enough.

"I don't know what a '14 Millers Court' is, but I'd like to help you find it?' She said with a child like excitement in her lithe in her voice. "But first I need to find my Father, my heart needs winding." she said with a slight frown on her pretty face, and sadness in her tone. "Do you know how to wind a heart?" She asked her brow raising to the top of her head in anticipation.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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#, as written by Shané
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The voice that came out of the girl in front of her made Lorena's eyes spark with alarm. Childlike and artificial the voice complimented her on her appearance and a hand reached out to touch her face. Immediately Lorena took a startled step back just as the child-woman withdrew her hand.

"Oh, I'm sorry, I'm not supposed to do that, Father says I shouldn't do that to people I've never met..."

Your father was most definitely right! She was about to confirm that statement aloud, when the woman curtsied and continued in her strange clock-work styled voice. Uncomfortable Lorena withdrew slightly, her eyes showing her distrust.

"My name is Emilia Janye, but my father calls me Mila, you can to if you like. I don't know what a '14 Millers Court' is, but I'd like to help you find it?'

"Ah…" Lorena managed to stammer out. She was completely stuck for words which was a rarity indeed. Who was this strange childish lady. Immediately she thought of the invalids at the town asylum and her expression softened. The way they reverted to a childlike state and were forced to endure the torturous 'cures' of the institutions. Inwardly she shuddered. It would certainly explain why a father might take pity on a daughter and hide her from authorities. What better place than White Chapel?

"But first I need to find my Father, my heart needs winding. Do you know how to wind a heart?"

Startled out of her thoughts, Lorena quickly gave the woman her full attention. At her words her cheeks flushed red, as the shame of her previous thoughts washed over her. Perhaps something was not quite right, but how dare she assume that the woman was any less 'normal' as herself. For goodness sake the institutions weren't that far off for herself should she ever be found out…

Shock suddenly came over her as her mind suddenly started to piece together what she had learned. The unnatural automaton voice, the need for a 'winded' heart, how she was hidden in White Chapel. Goodness! The woman was perhaps Iron Touched. Or at the very least her father certainly was to create such a being…

"I don't believe I know how to wind such a heart." Lorena replied, her voice slow and even. "However if we can find the right house perhaps I know someone who could…"

Except for the very obvious fact that you are lost! Lorena scowled at the thought, before quickly replacing it with a smile for Mila's sake.

"Oh, gosh. How rude! My name's Lorena." She gave Mila a broad smile, before a thumping sound echoed on the street.

Turning around, Lorena saw a young man smashing himself into a door. She was about to ignore it, not sure she wanted to draw any more attention to herself when recognition struck her. Surely it wasn't….Nope that had to be him.

"I think I now know where we are going." She declared, grinning half to herself. She turned quickly and crossed the street reaching the doorway Billy had disappeared through. Quickly she rapped on the door.







*Please note that I personally completely disagree with the term 'invalids', however in order to stay true to the time I decided to use it for the sake of authenticity. Naturally now that is entirely an insensitive and derogatory term to use.*

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes

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The night before fell on him like a curse. He had been floating on luck for the last few months and it had finally run out. Not a coin to his name, nor a friend to offer a hand, he was without resources. H.G. had been down this road before. With a little finesse, a little adjustment, he could usually make do. That night, he tried to make do with a safe. He had slipped through an open window in one of the townhouses in Kensington. His feet had landed on plush carpet and before him, an open door. He had cased the house for a week. He had an idea of the layout and as he crept through the hall, all boded well. He found the office, dripping with mahogany, cigar smoke and brandy. A large painting of a faun chasing nymphs hung behind the desk. The safe was hidden behind it. It was always behind the painting. It was hardly a challenge as he placed a hand on the metal and felt it twist and turn, clicking beneath his fingertips.

But his luck failed him as the safe door swung open. A maid with a taste for brandy discovered him in the office. She screamed and he screamed. Gas lamps flickered on and footsteps pounded along the halls. A cry for the police was sounded. H.G. flung himself out the window and caught the alleyway. With a groan, he rolled onto his feet and fled. He could usually found solace in The Nunnery, a local brothel with foreign tastes. One of the girls there was an old friend of his guardian, Mr. Cole. However, as luck would have it, the brothel was overtaken by a raid. With no place to go, he wandered the streets, ducking in and out of alleyways.

Finally, as the sun threatened the breach the horizon, he sat with his back against an alleyway. Eyes closed and arms folded, he slept. But morning came like a hammer, knocking on his head. It rattled his dreams, shaking off images of being chased in the dark. He peered around the corner and saw two women clanging on a door. One was clearly too rich to live in White Chapel. She even had the smell of wealth on her in a lingering scent of soap and perfume. The other one fit right in with her borrowed boots and frayed hems. Yet there was something strange about her, something just a little off. "Keep it down over there!" he snapped, "Some of us are tryin' to sleep,"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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There was a knock at the door. Julian looked up from his papers, frowning. He wasn't expecting anyone today. Before he could get up to see, Billy was already on his feet and off to answer the door. Julian shuffled his papers into a neat pile and closed the lid on his ink well while Billy attended to the business at the door.

Billy peeked through the gap between the door and the frame it was supposed to be in. Lorena he knew, perhaps not as well as Julian knew her, but he knew her. Like seemed to attract like, and he had always got the sense that Lorena wasn't exactly his biggest supporter. The girl with him was a complete stranger, though Billy figured that she was a friend of Lorena's. Billy pulled the door open, "Good morning ladies. Julian's just through there," he pointed through to the little workshop Julian had converted into his study of sorts. He knew that Lorena wasn't there to visit him. No one really came to visit Billy. He lead Lorena and her companion through to Julian, "Julie, we have guests."

Julian looked up from his ineffectual tidying, "I figured as much." Julian rose from his desk when he saw Lorena, "Lorena, I wasn't expecting to see you here so soon. I assume this a business call?" Julian asked. He cast a cursory glance towards her companion, waiting for an introduction before scanning the room, silently cursing the mess. He would have to clean it all soon, most likely by himself. The mess didn't seem to bother Billy all that much, but that was probably because he had grown up as one of seven children in a tiny house. He doubted Billy had ever seen a tidy house in his life. If Lorena was bothered by the mess, she would have to deal with it for the time being, or send word ahead before her next visit so he could make sure things were in order.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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#, as written by Shané
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Lorena had just managed to find the right place and her joy was quickly interrupted.

"Keep it down over there! Some of us are tryin' to sleep."

The angry man was leaning up against the alleyway and was definitely not someone Lorena wanted to pick a fight with. Nonetheless she couldn't help but return his glare and subconsciously her anger filtered through her telepathic link to Maestro. The crow acted immediately sending her back an image of exactly what he was going to do, before Lorena had time to convince him otherwise. All this happened in a split second and Maestro immediately dove from the tops of the buildings to swoop the rugged man.

Not for the first time Lorena half wished she could actually control animals temporarily or at least be able to communicate in words. But you didn't get the gifts you want. Maestro sent her his strong emotions of satisfaction and glee and Lorena quickly replied with her own fear and will for him not to repeat it. The birds confusion washed over her as he stopped irritating the man and took two hops on the ground toward her, his head cocked to his side. For crying out loud! Leave! She thought irritably sending the bird such an intense thoughts of him leaving that the effect was immediate. Maestro took off and left, though not before faintly sending back his hurt at being sent away so harshly.

Inwardly Lorena sighed, she'd not meant to be so cross, but if the animals kept reacting to her every whim like this it would be no time before her family figured out exactly what she was. She'd only manage to avoid it by the skin of her teeth so far. With that thought, her eyes were quickly drawn back to the man on the street, her sudden terror evident. What have I done?

She'd made it pretty obvious what she could do. Damn it! For a moment she just stood there awkwardly, staring at him not entirely sure what to do when the door opened. Thank goodness!

"Good morning ladies. Julian's just through there. Julie, we have guests."

Even once she entered the room her disquiet did not abate, but she tried to put aside her unease. Who would he tell? The people in White Chapel wouldn't care. She let out the breath she was holding, trying to ignore the prolonged feeling of anxiety. The room she entered was a real mess, but she pretended she didn't notice.

"I figured as much. Lorena, I wasn't expecting to see you here so soon. I assume this a business call?"

She nodded in answer to his enquiry. Well I certainly wouldn't be here otherwise! The risk was far too great to come to White Chapel for pleasantries. Turning to Mila she introduced the girl.

"My apologies for coming unannounced, but I think you may forgive me. This is Emilia Janye. I believe she may be one of your neighbours…." Her voice trialled off uncertainly unsure of exactly how to explain Mila's peculiar circumstances. Especially since at the moment it was guess work. "Perhaps Iron Touched?"

She looked pointedly at Julian at the word 'perhaps' trying to hint that there was something not quite right about the girl and Iron Touched just wouldn't quite explain it. She shook her head slightly, Mila's strange persona would have to wait. Something much bigger was brewing in London.

"Unfortunately I think we are all in a bit of trouble." The statement was put forward as fact, but inside Lorena was frightened.

Without another word she handed Julian a newspaper from her satchel. One of the smaller articles was circled in red ink "RIPPER STRIKES IN WHITE CHAPEL AGAIN"

"It's not him." Lorena said quietly. "The victim was a male and his body wasn't found. It's not the only one. I know there's something going on, as-"

She cut herself off. …my father's taking an interest in reading them and he doesn't care for the murders of whores. They didn't need to know of her father's interest in eugenics.

"Julian, someone is hunting us down."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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"I don't believe I know how to wind such a heart." The woman said and Mila sighed. She had to find someone to do it. She'd do it herself if she could reach but the panel was in her back, The woman seemed to frowned, which caused Mila to do the same but if faded into a smile and as did Mila's.

"Oh, gosh. How rude! My name's Lorena." Such a pretty name, Mila thought before a loud crash rang out behind them. Mila’s keen ears could hear the breathing, of a male, young but tested, the crunching of glass and wood. Lorena seemed to recognize the man by the way her breath seemed to quicken just so.
"I think I now know where we are going.” Lorena said calling her attention back to her. Mila smiled.

"Keep it down over there! Some of us are tryin' to sleep."
Mila turned toward the man that spoke. Her face turned up in a frown, though he reminded her of a character from a book. Dorian Gray. The idea lightening her expression some before a crow seemed to attack the man. Mila’s brow rose on her face before the crow stopped and hopped toward her and Lorena. The bird seemed to look at Lorena, which was odd but then again, Mila wasn’t exactly normal.

Soon the door opened and they were greeted by a young male that made Mila’s heart tick a little faster. She looked back at the surly man across the street, lingering there for a moment before they entered the house.

"Good morning ladies. Julian's just through there. Julie, we have guests." The place seemed to be a mess, and it made her miss her father. Her father’s lab was always a mess. Mila’s mismatched eyes followed the young male until another one walked in.


"I figured as much. Lorena, I wasn't expecting to see you here so soon. I assume this a business call?" Mila looked from Lorena to the man, unsure of what was happening now.

Lorean then turned to her and Mila smiled.

"My apologies for coming unannounced, but I think you may forgive me. This is Emilia Janye. I believe she may be one of your neighbours…." She said and stopped. Mila wondered what her hesitation was. . "Perhaps Iron Touched?"
Mila frowned. Her father said that before. Iron Touched. Her bones were a light weight metal but they weren’t iron, her viens were copper and pumping through them were a mix of blood and oil. Did that make her Iron Touched?

"Unfortunately I think we are all in a bit of trouble." Lorena said and Mila felt afraid. She didn’t want to be in trouble, she moved to Lorena, looking between the two men. Her eyes lingering on the younger one. Tom Sawyer, she thought, he reminded her of Tom Sawyer. Why did he call his brother Julie, Julie is a girl’s name.


"It's not him." Lorena said quietly. "The victim was a male and his body wasn't found. It's not the only one. I know there's something going on, as-"

Lorena stopped and Mila frowned a little, afraid.
"Julian, someone is hunting us down." She said and Mila took a hallow breath, steam moving through the pipes and pistons that was her lung, her clockwork heart ticking faster now. Hunting was for animals, so who was hunting Lorena, she wasn’t an animal and she was her only friend, she didn’t want anyone to hunt her. People kill what they hunt, that’s what happens in the books.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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"My apologies for coming unannounced, but I think you may forgive me. This is Emilia Janye. I believe she may be one of your neighbours….Perhaps Iron Touched?"

Julian looked at Emilia with interest. The way Lorena had said 'perhaps' made him think that she might be a little different from what they were used to when it came to Iron Touched. Not that they were all the same. Before he had known Billy was Iron Touched, Julian had assumed that none of them had any physical markers. And then there was Billy who had no way to hide his gift, not when the marks were starting to peak out over the collar of his shirts and the cuffs of his sleeves. Most Iron Touched could walk around in public without fear, so long as they didn't use their power. For Billy, beyond the fringes of White Chapel, it was remarkably difficult.

Julian's attention was caught by Lorena once again as she handed him a newspaper, "Unfortunately I think we are all in a bit of trouble."

Julian read the small article. Another Ripper killing? He always felt so angry reading about the Ripper. If these killings were taking place in any other borough of London, the police would be all over the city, the murders would be the subject of hushed whispers at dinner. But this was White Chapel, an ugly stain on the beauty of London. Whatever happened here was just swept aside and ignored. Why should they bother? The only people who lived in White Chapel were Iron Touched and whores. Whoever cared about people like them? "The Ripper?" he asked, mostly for Billy's benefit so the boy would know what was going on.

"It's not him.The victim was a male and his body wasn't found. It's not the only one. I know there's something going on, as-" Julian waited for Lorena to finish, getting the sense that she had just caught herself about to say something untoward, "Julian, someone is hunting us down."

Julian nodded grimly, "I figured as much. If there were a mix of victims, I'd be inclined to believe that it was simply coincedence. But given how many of them have been Iron Touched..."

"The girls in the brothels have been talking too," Billy said, acutely aware of Emilia's gaze on him, "They're scared it's gonna be one of them next."


Julian leaned against the desk, staring at the article, "All we can do for now is be vigilant. Billy, if you hear any information that might help us, I want you to tell me as soon as possible, do you understand?"

"Aye sir."

"Good. Lorena, you're the safest one here. I would suggest, for the time being at least, to keep your visits here minimal and be careful who you talk to, for your own safety more than anyone elses." He turned to Emilia, "And now to the easier mystery to solve. You are Iron Touched, no?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes

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The crow surprised him; another sign of bad luck. It swooped by his head. He jerked his head out of the way before it getting the brunt of the demon bird but caught a few feathers in his face for the trouble. Bad luck always came in threes. Hopefully it meant his luck would turn. H.G. glowered as the two women went inside. He headed past the house but paused before the steps. Something caught his attention; a scent in the air... of wet metal... He pushed it out of his mind and headed down the street in search of breakfast.

H.G. stopped on the corner and dug in his pocket for his last coin. He tossed it high in the air. Heads, his luck was changing for the better and it was safe to try for a meal in a posher district. Tails, he'd be better off back in the alley. He held out a hand and the shiny coin landed on its back, much to H.G.'s disappointment. With a curse under his breath, he let the little bastard spin in his hand. And with a breath, it landed on heads. "That's more like it," He tucked the coin back in his pocket and turned the corner.

But as he did so, he saw a police officer. He looked harmless enough, swinging his baton back and forth. But H.G. didn't want to risk it. He spun on his heels and headed back towards his temporary home. However, it sparked the attention of the officer and he called out to him as he disappeared back around the corner. H.G. quickened his pace, hoping to put some distance before the cop got the street. He ducked into the alley and latched onto the fire escape. With a foot on the ladder, it squealed upwards towards the sky. He rolled out of sight onto the roof, heart pounding.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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"And now to the easier mystery to solve. You are Iron Touched, no?"

Emila looked at the man named Julian. He reminded her of Sherlock Holmes, clever and inquisitive.
Hmm? That was a word she'd never thought before. Inquisitive. Father said she would begin to learn much faster as time went on, the more books, she read the smarter she'd become. She wondered if it worked the same with people. could People teach her like books did.

She blinked and smiled. "That's what my father said he was." Mila said, her voice crackling a bit, as her vocals reverberated through the copper wiring that was her vocal cords. "A part of me, is, the other part...the other part...it's different." She said and looked down at herself, unsure on how to proceed.

She wasn't supposed to be out, her father said she wasn't ready to be out with other people, but she needed help. Without him, her heart would stop and then so would she.

She was afraid to stop. She liked being awake, she liked learning, and growing, she didn't want to stop.

"Father says, that parts of me, most of me, coming from parts, like a clock because I was born incorrectly..." She said and rolled up her sleeve, showing rivets at her shoulder. "He says that the human parts didn't work correctly, so he had to replace them" she said tapping brass on her shoulder, it rung a soft hallow sound. From looking at He says the human parts and the automaton parts work together and soon, I'll work like a normal person...of sorts, only..." She looked down at her feet, her toes turned inward, she hated when she did that, proper ladies don't do that. She straightened her feet. "My heart... it needed winding everyday when I power on...err wake up, but Father's missing, and it hasn't been wound yet...I need to find him." She said, her mismatched eyes pleaded with Julian. "I would wind it myself, but I can't reach, and if it's not wound, I'll stop." she said, taking a deep breath, the sound of rushing steam coursed through her metal lungs. "Can you help me find my Father? She said, more softly now, wishing someone could help her. She was becoming worried.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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Lorena watched as Julian took a look at the newspaper. There were a few more stashed in her satchel of older dates, but that was the latest. All of them marked with red ink…and not her own either. Mila made a peculiar noise at the mention of being hunted down, and Lorena's eyes slid to the side before remembering to be polite and she pretended not to notice.

"I figured as much. If there were a mix of victims, I'd be inclined to believe that it was simply coincidence. But given how many of them have been Iron Touched..."

Good. At least he's not in denial. She'd been half worried he wouldn't buy her theory, and that she'd have to pull out more evidence. It was woven too much into her family and as much as she wanted to trust these two, she'd only met them once. For all she knew they'd take anything they could get from her. For now they didn't need to know about her private life.

"The girls in the brothels have been talking too, they're scared it's gonna be one of them next."

Her eyebrows shot up.

"And I do not want to know how you have that information."
She muttered to herself not caring if anyone overheard. It seemed she had every right to be cautious about her identity. The very thought of what went down in the brothels made her feel ill. It was all the worst knowing that the only difference between herself and those within them was a bit of coin. After all very few went into that kind of business if there were any other honest work to be done.

Well at least Julian was taking her warning seriously, instructing Billy to keep an ear out for any more information. She still wouldn't look the younger male in the eye.

"Good. Lorena, you're the safest one here. I would suggest, for the time being at least, to keep your visits here minimal and be careful who you talk to, for your own safety more than anyone else's."

Lorena used a great deal of effort to avoid rolling her eyes. She wasn't thick. If she was her father would have shipped her off to the asylum long ago. As for being safest, perhaps he was correct but goodness her house didn't feel safe. She'd often considered running away to avoid a fate at an institution should her father find out. However with only the small amount of money her father actually allowed her to use she'd be quickly on the street in White Chapel and fair game for any passer-by.

"And now to the easier mystery to solve. You are Iron Touched, no?"

Thankful for a change in thoughts, she turned back to Mila.

"That's what my father said he was. A part of me, is, the other part...the other part...it's different."

Not surprised Lorena kept her eyes fixed on the girl waiting patiently for an explanation. When it was forthcoming it was difficult to hide her amazement. She tried to discreetly examine the rivets on the girls shoulder soaking up the information. She'd have a field day trying to figure out how it all worked. Being a scholar's daughter she couldn't help finding anything unusual fascinating. Particularly human anatomy. The ringing of metal echoed in the room as Mila tapped her own shoulder.

However when Mila mentioned the heart, Lorena immediately was reminded of her failure to bring that up earlier. She had half still believed the girl was not quite right in the head, and now she was a little bit chastised by how wrong she had been. The last question was far worse. Lorena bit her lip. Suddenly she had a very bad feeling that Mila wasn't going to like the answer to that question. Feeling like breaking possibly horrendous news with some better she quickly spoke up.

"How exactly do you wind your heart? If it's like any of the clockwork toys from childhood I believe I just might be able to manage it…."
She paused a moment considering how best to broach the other subject. Finally she took in a deep breath.

"Mila, when exactly did your father go missing?" Picking up the newspaper once again, she handed it to Mila. "He doesn't….he doesn't happen to fit that description?"

She was hoping that it was just a coincidence, after all there were many men living in White Chapel older enough to be a father…the problem was her bones were telling her otherwise. Nonetheless occasionally premonitions can just be a result of an overactive imagination.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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"How exactly do you wind your heart? If it's like any of the clockwork toys from childhood I believe I just might be able to manage it…."

Mila could only shrug. She honestly, didn't know, she'd seen her father many times do it, but what he did she couldn't be sure. Her back panel opened up, and she could hear him tinkering, winding gears and cranking levers but she'd never actually seen it.
"Mila, when exactly did your father go missing?
Lorena then picked up the newspaper and handed it to Mila who looked up at her strangely. "He doesn't….he doesn't happen to fit that description?"
Mila read it over, her clockwork heart ticking faster and faster. Was it him? Was her father hunted like Lorena said they all were to be. Did her father Stop?

She looked up, after finishing, black brown tears welling up in her eyes.

"It's..."
She smiled, wide and pretty. "It's not him, My father left last night, this man had been gone for a days, It's not Father."" She said and suddenly, her heart clenched, the ticking turned into a shrill ringing like a timer. Mila gripped her chest, dropping to her knees, the floorboards beneath her whining in protest.

She had forgotten her father put a warning on her heart, that when it was getting too close, when she was in danger of Stopping, her heart would ring like a kitchen timer.

She looked up pleadingly, the pain in her chest increasing, her breath coming out hot and fast, her pretty face twisted in pain but she dropped with a loud heavy thud, too heavy for the girl her size, unconscious.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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He rested his back against the chimney, staring out onto the rooftops. H.G. dug in his coat pocket for a cigarette only to find an empty case. With a heavy sigh, he closed his eyes. His streak of bad luck was far from over. Maybe it was time to hop a ship and leave White Chapel once and for all. As he settled into a good brood, he caught the sound of voices from the chimney. He recognized the wealthy woman from before. Probably slumming. The other voice was unfamiliar but they sounded worried. Shooting a glance behind him, he leaned an ear towards the opening.

He caught the smell again, of metal and flesh. It was that woman in the mismatched clothes. He leaned in farther, waiting for her to speak. Was she human? No human smelled like that. As he ducked his upper torso into the chimney, he caught a few words about a heart and a clockwork toy. It was difficult to piece it together but from the tones of their voice, there was concern. The mismatched girl sounded so young and lost. H.G. wished he could help her. Suddenly a loud clanging noise echoed up through the flue.

He braced him against the chimney walls, adjusting his footing. Unfortunately, his luck was still against him. H.G.'s foot slipped and he pitched forward with arms forward. He slowed his descent by scraping his feet along the brick but he still landed with a thud in a pile of ash. H.G. stumbled to his feet, coughing and hacking up ash and dust. He eyed the stranger and gave a polite nod. "You should really get that chimney cleaned," he said.

As the noise grew louder, he followed it to the mismatched woman. She appeared unconscious. Keeping his distance from the wealthy woman and any crows she had lingering around her, he knelt at the clanging girl's side. Before the others could speak, he raised a hand "All is well!" he shouted, puffing up his chest to give himself the appearance of great importance. "I'm a doctor!" However, his tattered jacket and fingerless gloves were a dead giveaway. The smell of metal had grown stronger and as he rested an ear to her chest, he could hear the grinding of spent gears

"Fascinating!" he said, eyes lighting up. A woman made of metal... He could hardly believe it. Yet the moment couldn't be enjoyed with the desperate alarm sounding. Something set it off but what... He placed a hand on where her heart should be and felt the silence in the hollow void. "Oh dear... I'll have this fixed in a tick..." he said.

He cleared his throat and began to sing. "In the merry month of June from me home I started" As he sang, his hand grew hot and the gears began to turn. "Left the girls of Tuam so sad and broken hearted" Click... click... click... the springs tightened. "Saluted father dear, kissed me darling mother" He let go as the heart began to tick on its own. All he had to do was wait for her to open her eyes. He turned to the others and with a crooked grin and said, "Burnes at your service. Wouldn't happen to have a smoke?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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"In the merry month of June from me home I started"
Slowly gears began to turn.

"Left the girls of Tuam so sad and broken hearted"
Tick... tick... tick... the springs tightened.

"Saluted father dear, kissed me darling mother"

Tick...tick..tick.

pistons began to pump, oil and blood coursing through copper veins.

Mila's eyes sprang open, and she awoke with a gasp, holding her chest. Breathing was hard at first, but eventually it worked.

She looked around, her memory data playing over in her head, blinking a few times she recalled the others but not the man she was now draped over.

She stared at him unsure on who he was or where he came from. Her chest ached, as it had whenever Father wound her heart.

She blinked at the man with her mismatched eyes until they began to mimick his.

"Hello." She said, still clutching her chest though her grip was looser as the pain slowly abated. Her voice still crackling like a Victrola but it seemed to be clearer now. "Did you wind my heart?" She said, but this time, her voice was as clear as any one them, but still with a slight crackling behind it.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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As the girl came to life again, he hovered over her, examining her eyes. She could almost pass for human apart from her eyes. They looked second-hand until they blinked themselves into a mirror image of his. He had to resist the urge to poke and prod and see what she was really made up. Human she was not, at least not completely. But he remembered his manners. It was bad enough he barged in through their chimney. Soot and ash still clung to clothes. No need to open their toy and see what was inside.

As she spoke, her voice crackled but the use of it made it clearer. She asked if he had wound her heart. The self awareness was astonishing. Perhaps she was a little more human that he first assumed. "I did, miss," he said, "Feeling better?" He rose to his feet and offered her hand. "I think a spot of tea will fix you right up," He turned to the others, "Or something stronger if you have it,"

Realizing his breach in manners her turned to the mechanical woman. "Do you eat or drink?" One question lead to thousands of questions in his head. Did she sleep? Did she laugh? Did she sing? What parts were human? What parts were machine? And as the questions flooded his brain, he realized that no matter who these strangers were, he had to find a way in. For all the locks and safes he had been the key for, she was the greatest of them all.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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"And I do not want to know how you have that information."

Billy smirked at Lorena's obvious disapproval. He didn't mean to make her uncomfortable, but when her reactions were so stark, it was difficult not to push her. "It's because I'm so approachable, I have a face that people trust. It just makes people want to tell me their deepest fears and desires. I'm very...accommodating like that."

Julian looked at Billy pointedly, eyebrow raised. Billy caught the look and was silenced by it. He had heard stories of what had happened between Julian and those that had fallen on his bad side. While he was never sure of the accuracy of these tales, Billy liked to remain breathing.

Julian listened as Emilia explained her condition. Not quite human, not quite machine. Julian had thought that White Chapel had thrown everything it had at him, but apparently there was always one surprise more. Billy could almost hear his brain whirring at the information. As for himself, he took in the rivets on Emilia's shoulder, that her heart was clockwork and was deeply touched by it. That was the love of a father in solid proof. He had never known that from his own father, nor was he ever likely to. Emilia probably didn't realise how lucky she had been, and that was good.

Billy frowned, looking to Julian when Emilia began to ring, "Julian, what do we do?"

Julian threw his hands up, "How should I know?"

There was a clattering in the chimney and Billy jumped to the side when a man came crashing out, apparently bringing with him half the soot and ash in White Chapel. "You should really get that chimney cleaned."

"You could have just used the front door, then the soot wouldn't be a problem."

Julian just looked at the man that had crashed into the room. Billy had seen that look before. It was no good news for the stranger. Billy could only imagine what the ash and soot was doing to poor Julian's mind. So much dirt, and it was everywhere.

"All is well!" The man shouted, "I'm a doctor!"

Billy raised his eyebrow, "And I'm the Emperor of Japan." He muttered.

The stranger crouched over Emilia, seemingly fascinated by her. Billy instinctively reached for the cuff of his sleeve. He saw Julian look at him, raising a hand to signal caution. The man began singing to himself as the ringing began to subside. Emilia's eyes opened and she stood on shaky legs.

"I think a spot of tea will fix you right up." The man turned to the them, "Or something stronger if you have it."

"If we had anything stronger, I'd be drinking it." Billy replied curtly.

"Billy," Julian said, the warning tone evident for all to hear,"As my friend was saying, we don't have anything of much really. But that is besides the point, what were you doing in our chimney? And, more to the point, who are you?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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Billy had given Lorena a rather gleeful look when she had responded to the mention of the brothel.

"It's because I'm so approachable, I have a face that people trust. It just makes people want to tell me their deepest fears and desires. I'm very...accommodating like that."

An angry flush crept over her cheeks at his lightly veiled meaning. Mortified at how easily the words slipped off his tongue, she gave him a cold look, her lips pursed together in disgust. Her fury was almost tangible though she refrained from rewarding Billy with any more words. She would not quickly forgive such proudly spoken atrocities. Stiffly she turned away from him and made a point not to look in his direction.

Temporarily distracted by other matters she had then attended to Mila, and waited patiently for the girl to look at the newspaper. When the girl looked up with tears brewing Lorena caught her breath expecting to have to provide a comfort. She was relieved to hear that this was not the girl's father.

Her relief was short lived as the girl clutched her chest and fell as a piercing ringing echoed in the room. For a moment Lorena could only freeze in shock as Billy demanded some sort of response from Julian, however quickly she was jolted out of her stupor as a man tumbled into the room via the fireplace. Soot and ash went everywhere giving her clean clothes a new dusty appearance. Lorena scowled at the new comer quite over attempting to be polite to people that evidently didn't give a damn about self-control.

"You should really get that chimney cleaned,"

"You could have just used the front door, then the soot wouldn't be a problem."

In the midst of the chaos Lorena could only fume at the disorder in silence. The very thought of someone so rudely bursting in and then making demands of people was absurd. Evidently Julian wasn't appreciating it either. It seemed he was the only other sane one here. The newcomer announced himself as a doctor.

Of what? was Lorena's snapped thought followed in attitude by Billy's retort. She barely managed to hide a twisted smile at the man's humour. It was always the worst when you found yourself disapproving of someone with a similar, if not more audacious, sense of humour as yourself.

Pushing aside her thoughts, Lorena watched eyebrows raised as the man sung strangely to himself all the while tinkering away at Mila's clockwork parts. When she stood and the man introduced himself before making another demand Lorena found herself giving him a stony look. It seemed he wasn't about to apologise for his intrusion. Mila on the other hand seemed completely unaware of the evident breach of privacy simply asking about the facts.

"I did, miss. Feeling better?"

Lorena's features didn't soften, finding the strange mix of manners and abrupt demands all the more annoying. Such a contradiction in a person only served to frustrate her.

"I think a spot of tea will fix you right up."
The man turned to the them, "Or something stronger if you have it."

"If we had anything stronger, I'd be drinking it."
Billy replied curtly.

"Billy, as my friend was saying, we don't have anything of much really. But that is beside the point, what were you doing in our chimney? And, more to the point, who are you?"

Now it was Lorena's turn to smirk unladylike at Julian's half-scolding. Childishly she found herself giving Billy a pointed look happy that someone had taken him to heel. Seeing that no one else was about to bow to the whims of societal manners, she most certainly would not. For once she actually had the opportunity to be herself without her mother's scolding tongue and her father's disapproving eyes. At the thought of her parents she found herself gazing down at her now filthy clothes.

Fear immediately followed suit. There was no hiding nor removing all the soot from her clothing before she arrived home. Her eyes betrayed her sudden terror as her mind went into a whir. How was she going to explain this? She was supposed to be at the shops picking up bits and pieces for a dress that she already had everything she needed. You didn't find chimney's at the shops. Knowing her suspicious father if she didn't give a satisfactory explanation he'd ask their coachman. It didn't matter how much she paid the coachman, he wouldn't lie to her father.

She took in a shaking breath trying to keep herself calm. Pale-faced she told herself that perhaps she could sneak up to her chambers unseen. Unconsciously she started trying to brush off as much soot as possibly, greying her hands.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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H.G. had a talent for selective hearing. It served him well in the face of possible conflict. So the little aside about soot and the comment about the availability of drink went through one ear and out the other. He decided he'd like Billy anyway. Something about the smirking expression or the relaxed posture... Julian would possibly never recover. The well-to-do rarely did. As for the well-to-do he caught the eye of Lorena.

"Crow lady," he said, jabbing a finger in her direction, "Now don't deny it. Crows don't just fling themselves at unsuspecting and, might I add, innocent bystanders... tsk tsk...," H.G. shook his head. "[color=#b36d41]What do they teach these children nowadays," The subconscious posturing resembled his dear friend, Mr. Cole. He often behaved older and more worldly than he really was. Truthfully, he had never been far from White Chapel.

"Now as to who I am, I think the real question is who are you, and what are you doing with an automaton? That's dangerous around here... I saw a copper not just two blocks from here," He brushed off a little soot from his collar. "And crow lady over there..." he said, glancing at Lorena before settling on Billy, "You're asking for trouble,"

He took a seat on the couch, unaware of the dirt and smudges he left behind on the furniture. "Luckily, I'm here," he said, pointing to himself so everyone got the picture. "I'm a specialist in these matters. Call me H.G. or doctor... actually call me Doctor. I like the sound of it," Then with a wink to Billy, "And if you're inclined, I'll call you Emperor of Japan,"

"Now about that tea?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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"I did, miss," Said the man and Emilia felt heat rush to her copper cheeks. "Feeling better?" He said as he rose and offered her a hand like a gentlemen. Emilia nodded and took his hand, his skin was rough but soft all at once, not so unlike her father's. "I think a spot of tea will fix you right up," He then turned to the others, "Or something stronger if you have it," He said and then turned back to her.

Causing her to blink. "Do you eat or drink?" It was a simple question, but one that she found herself having difficulty answering. She knew what hunger and thirst were yet she hadn't experienced it. Only read about it in books. In Arabian nights, the sun had been hot and made Al-Ad-din thirsty, meaning he needed water. Shahrazad's sister had been so nervous that she couldn't eat, though she was hungry.

Billy, as my friend was saying, we don't have anything of much really. But that is beside the point, what were you doing in our chimney? And, more to the point, who are you?" Mister Juilan said and snapped Emilia out of her thoughts. She only just realized then that the man was covered in soot and dirt.

"Crow lady," The man said, tossing a finger toward Lorena and cheerfully ignoring Julian's question. "Now don't deny it. Crows don't just fling themselves at unsuspecting and, might I add, innocent bystanders... tsk tsk...," He shook his head, mockingly, but even still Emilia found herself wanting to laugh. She didn't though. "What do they teach these children nowadays," He said and Emilia looked at him oddly, he reminded her of the Mad Hatter. Nothing of what he said made any real sense but it was amusing all the same.

"Now as to who I am, I think the real question is who are you, and what are you doing with an automaton? That's dangerous around here... I saw a copper not just two blocks from here,"

Emilia's small smile vanished then, her heart ticking a bit faster, steam pumping though her chest. Automaton? Dangerous?
She wasn't dangerous? How could she be dangerous? And Father said she wasn't an automaton, not really. She was just...special. She found she didn't like to be referred to as "An Automaton". Even if he did wind her heart, and stopped her from...well.. Stopping.

She missed nearly all of what he said. He called himself Doctor, that much she caught, and he had letters for a name. H.G.

"Now about that tea?"

Mila crossed her arms over her chest, "I'm not an automaton!" She said bitterly, turning her head,calling their attention to her. She was quiet for a moment, her fists were clenched and she hadn't noticed until she opened her palms. She huffed, steam exiting through her nose with tears working in her eyes. She missed her father terribly just then, and she honestly didn't know why but it made her chest ache. She rubbed her chest, blinking back oily tears."I'm a girl...my name is Emilia, Emilia Janye, She said more softly now, a little embarrassed but she knew she should speak up. "I don't know if I eat or drink, I never have before but I want to try, and you shouldn't speak about someone as if they aren't standing right beside you, it--it's rude." She said and honestly that was no where in her etiquette books but it just felt wrong. She was a person...or at least she would be one day.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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H.G. turned to the mismatched girl and tilted his head. As she spoke, tears fell down her face. Oh no... he had made a woman cry. It was his great weakness, one that he often committed by some verbal atrocity that fell from his careless lips. He hopped to his feet, driven by his own shame, and wiped a fallen tear from the girl.

"My apologies, miss," he said gently; his affectations slowly falling away. But it was not to last. The cogs began to turn and suddenly, he remembered her remark about eating and drinking. He snapped his fingers at the very thought.

"Fascinating!" he said, "There is so much for you to try! Tea is not good enough. I mean, yes, every decent Englishman drinks tea but for your very first drink... your very first meal... no, that must be special..." He walked towards the window, eyeing the street. "Once the street is clear, there's a little restaurant, Le Fromage or something pretentious, I forget... But they have French wine and caviar. I'm told it's exquisite, but if not, we can try some fish and chips," His mouth was getting ahead of his brain.

Perhaps it was her new-ness he liked, as well as her mechanics. Most sized him up and made their judgement right away, wrong or right. But he could be anyone to her... he could be anyone.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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"My apologies, miss," H.G said, after brushing away her fallen tears. Mila felt her face flush a bit as she sniffed back more.

"Fascinating!" he said,suddenly, startling her a bit. she felt a giggle in her throat at the start. "There is so much for you to try! Tea is not good enough. I mean, yes, every decent Englishman drinks tea but for your very first drink... your very first meal... no, that must be special..." he told her, walking toward the window, Emilia looked to Lorena, she didn't know what he was going on about.. "Once the street is clear, there's a little restaurant, Le Fromage or something pretentious, I forget... But they have French wine and caviar. I'm told it's exquisite, but if not, we can try some fish and chips, Mila cocked her head.

"I'm sorry, I don't know what you mean?" she admitted sheepishly. "Restaurant?" she inquired but stopped as her mind flooded her with images, her mismatched eyes fluttering. She blinked a few times before she looked back at H.G with a bright smile, her earlier tears all but gone now. "Oh never mind, I know what that is now. I'd like to go....but why do we have to wait until the street is clear. clear of what?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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"Crow lady.."

As the man jerked his finger at her, the mess she was in was quickly put aside. Recognition alighted her features before it quickly turned into a scowl.

"Now don't deny it. Crows don't just fling themselves at unsuspecting and, might I add, innocent bystanders... tsk tsk..., What do they teach these children nowadays,"

Lorena merely regarded him silently. Staring him down. She didn't need to justify what happened to this man who demanded answers when he had no right to. Beside, his rude outburst at the door did not match his description of innocence according to both herself and Maestro.

"Now as to who I am, I think the real question is who are you, and what are you doing with an automaton? That's dangerous around here... I saw a copper not just two blocks from here,"

Lorena had been about to cut him off at his avoidance of the question, however at the mention of the police she paled.

"And crow lady over there...You're asking for trouble,"

That was the last straw. As he continued rattling on about titles he did not deserve, Lorena was fuming. So far most of her worries revolved around him. He'd set Maestro off, and it was he who managed to get soot everywhere which in future she would have to explain. Unconsciously she found her nails digging into her palms in anger. Who was he? He still hadn't answered that question to her satisfaction. She frowned as her mind began to tick over what she already knew about him. The more she thought the more concerned she became. Firstly he had been seated outside Julian's house and then had managed to fall in through the chimney. Why had he remained hanging about here? An ugly suspicion began to rear it's head as he continued to prattle. She noticed Mila's smile quickly fade. Curious, she tilted her head slightly in the girls direction.

"I'm not an automaton!"

Ah so that was the problem. Lorena hid her surprise. She had not entirely been sure of how human in quality the girl really was, now it seemed that Mila at least was certain she was a person and Lorena couldn't find any substantial reason to disagree. At the mention of H.G. being rude, Lorena whole heartedly agreed.

Immediately he apologised and begin chattering on without hesitation about different restaurants; with Mila quickly figuring out what he meant. It seemed he had been forgiven already by the girl as her tears were immediately quelled. Lorena's grievances were far from put aside however. When Mila asked about a cleared street Lorena finally had a chance to break in and ensure some of her questions were answered.

"It's not altogether safe on the streets Mila. People seem very adept at finding information that doesn't belong to them."

She found herself turning to look straight at H.G. as she continued.

"I daresay the streets tend to have unwanted ears." She gave H.G. a meaningful look. "Despite your obvious avoidance to respond to Julian's questions, I am not inclined to let it remained unanswered. Who are you?"

She paused, not allowing her stare to falter before continuing.

"For whoever you say you are doctor, you seem to have a-….say suspicious interest in this house and our business. I won't deny the incident with the crow, and you most certainly cannot deny that it remains rather uncomfortably coincidental that you happen to be seated outside this house and then later decide to come in through the chimney. I am sure you are aware through both Mila's presence and my own that we are not particularly comfortable with prying eyes and ears."

"Forgive me for my distrust-" Lorena made a point to not sounding at all apologetic ", but I find that many would be quite happy to use such information, if indeed they are not already searching for it."

Her eyes hardened at the end. It all matched up too nicely for Lorena to deny her suspicions. Either the man had chanced upon the group and found their conversation worthy of reporting for a reward or he was already part of the police. Despite his warning of a cop nearby, Lorena was sure this was only a tool designed to gain their trust in order that they reveal more.

"And you say we are all asking for trouble, however it seems to me we would all be much safer without your presence. If not for your rudeness Maestro, the crow, would not have decided to reprimand you. And I have some nice explaining to do for the state of my attire!"

She cut herself off roughly, deciding she had revealed too much of her fears already. Her fear of her father was something she didn't like admitting to herself much less to acquaintances.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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H.G. held a hand over his heart, mouth agape at the accusations thrown at him. "I have been completely transparent, madam!" his voice rose to a high pitch. "If I have done something to offend, to that I am most dreadfully sorry," He often found that a few flowery words thrown in tended to impress people. He wasn't sure why but he liked peppering his speech to give himself an air of authority, or at least equality. Having spent his life at the bottom, it was nice to play king once in awhile.

"My intentions are purely academic," he said, pushing up glasses he wasn't wearing. "My normal residence was unsuitable. I was looking for another place to rest my weary head. Unfortunately the hotels were all booked but the alleyways are always open, no questions asked," He rose to his feet and began pacing across the oriental rug. Despite his best efforts to project an aura of dignity, his hands grew restless and began gesturing dramatically with every inflection.

"As to my presence here, it was purely accidental and from the looks of it, fortuitous," he said, glancing down his nose at Lorena. "If I had not arrived, you would have had a lot of explaining to do to the police. The body of a poor girl would be difficult to find an excuse for. Of course, we are assuming that your motives are pure," He shook his head, tutting quietly.

"And to any outsider, it would appear that you need me for Emilia's sake. Unless you know how to wind the girl yourself. And to any decent human being, you would also know that no Iron Touched would dare rat out another," He was making a big assumption but the risk seemed slight in comparison to what he'd been missing. He had only met others like him in passing. It was rare to come across a collection of those with gifts. Perhaps it was for safety. But he felt less alone among this room full of strangers, than he had in a long time.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Julian Fitzpatrick Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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"I have been completely transparent, madam!" H.G exclaimed and Emilia's brow furrowed before she could answer Lorena. "If I have done something to offend, to that I am most dreadfully sorry," He said and she shook her head. He helped her, though he was covered in dust and soot from the chimney.

"My intentions are purely academic," he said, pushing his fingers up his nose as if he were wearing glasses. Emilia tittered softly behind her hand. She shouldn't laugh, this was serious. . "My normal residence was unsuitable. I was looking for another place to rest my weary head. Unfortunately the hotels were all booked but the alleyways are always open, no questions asked," He said began to pace. He lived on the street, how tragic.

"As to my presence here, it was purely accidental and from the looks of it, fortuitous," He said and Emilia couldn't help but agree. She would have Stopped for good were it not for him. "If I had not arrived, you would have had a lot of explaining to do to the police. The body of a poor girl would be difficult to find an excuse for. Of course, we are assuming that your motives are pure," He said shaking his head.

"And to any outsider, it would appear that you need me for Emilia's sake. Unless you know how to wind the girl yourself. And to any decent human being, you would also know that no Iron Touched would dare rat out another,"

Iron Touched, so he was special and he knew how to help her, maybe he could help her find her father too.

"Please let him stay."Emilia chimed in and a blush reddened her copper cheeks. "Excuse me, I don't mean tobe rude, but he helped me, and he seems nice enough, why else would he?" She said and was for a moment, curious about his motives, as he said.

"Um, How did you know I needed help? She said and touched her chest. "I'm grateful, I truly am, and my heart seems stronger then it was before, but I'm curious."she said looking at him but not in the eyes so not to stare. Staring was rude, no matter how nice the person looked.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Emilia 'Mila' Janye Character Portrait: Lorena McCoy Creery Character Portrait: H. G. Burnes Character Portrait: Billy Carter

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The corner of his mouth twisted into a wolfish grin, as a beast would look on as a prey. But Emilia was not prey, she was an unanswered question. He tapped his nose and said, "When I saw you, I could see there was something... I could smell it. I could smell the turning gears and spinning cogs that pump your lovely heart," he said. "And then it stopped..."

H.G. turned around and shrugged as if he had done nothing. "But I'm afraid I have overstayed my welcome," he said, taking slow, steady steps towards the door. "It is a shame to be shunned by one's own kind. I suppose it is how we survive... All for one... I, for one, prefer an assemblage of my peers; safety in numbers,"

His hand settled on the doorknob. He cast a glance behind him. "But I suppose you haven't heard the rumors," He paused for effect. "Disappearances..." he said, 'But I will not offend your hospitality," If he had judged their character correctly, they would begrudgingly allow him to continue with them. However, not everyone was kind or pragmatic. He had know their cold eyes and heartless words. They were easy to spot. But every once in awhile there would be a shot of steel in a friendly face.