Derrick Mason Gray

Bakkhos
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About Derrick Mason Gray

  • Rank
    Around Since Moses

CHARACTER PROFILE

  • GENDER
    Female
  • PLAY-BY
    Bridget Moynahan
  • SEXUAL ORIENTATION
    Heterosexual
  • RACE
    Altered Human
  • JOB
    Bakkhos Club Headliner / Bakkhos Boss Bodyguard
  • LOCATION
    New York
  • FACTION
    Bakkhos
  • APPEARANCE
    At six foot two with a lean, muscled build she can be intimidating or elegant depending on her mood. Her dark brown hair is naturally straight and hangs in easy to care for long layers to the middle of her back. Eyes are rarely seen as she hides them behind round Lennon-styled sunglasses that are so dark they seem opaque, this is to keep secret the eerie sightless light gray pupils and nearly white irises she was born with. There is a nasty foot long, six inch wide scar up the outside of her right thigh, a concrete burn from a motorcycle accident in her teens. Her left shoulder is marred by four ragged scars that wrap nearly from the back down towards her chest, a "gift" from an encounter with a werewolf that had betrayed Bakkhos.

    There are six piercings in her left ear all along the outer edge from her lobe to her helix, two more in the right ear lobe; these days they are often void of adornment but when she wears anything it will typically be silver studs or hoops. Centered on her back is a tattoo that a mere three alive have gotten to see. It started as something she did as a teenager to piss off her mother, but it was added to and evolved into a unique piece that seems contrary to the often aloof tomboy. The guitar's sound chamber peeking through "carved" flesh decidedly…feminine. When not "on duty" she is typically in loose fitting jeans or black cargos that have a tendency to ride low on her hips with a dark tank or cropped vest on top, always enough skin covered to hide the ink. Derrick isn’t much into jewelry so other than occasionally wearing her piercings it is usually restricted to leather bracelet cords on her wrists and a chunky ring or two on her fingers. All this is laid aside however when Angelo needs her dressed and on point. Then the leanly muscled form is slid into a dark pinstriped pant suit whose blazer plunges deep enough to distract, hair sleekly pulled from her features with a hint of elegant jewelry that makes her look like anything but a bodyguard and personal listening device.
  • PERSONALITY
    Derrick has always had a rebellious nature, apt to do the opposite of what is expected of her just to spite the “rules”. She tends to be cool and aloof to people she doesn’t know and only mildly lukewarm to those she does but what most don't know is this is more a symptom of her lack of social skills than any real slight on her part. It has been a long time since she has really let anyone “in”.

    She is fiercely driven when it comes to music, both in practice and on stage. There is a reason she is known as a genius both before and after the Nevus. She is always pushing herself for perfection. But there is a bit of an impish side too if people look hard enough to find it. She takes a great deal of pleasure in manipulating idiots (especially ones that think they are cool) so they expose themselves in public as being the imbeciles she already knows them to be.

    Paranoid fear also shapes her tendencies. Often preferring the quiet of her tiny apartment, a good shot of liquor and Caesar curled in her lap to going to dinner or for a drink with some stranger that thought she was interesting. After all, there is no telling what they really want from her.

    Likes::
    High end whiskey or rum / Good music / Martial arts / Freaking people out when she responds to things they whispered thinking she wouldn’t hear / Thunderstorms / Her solitude / Push her sparring partner / A cop that doesn’t seem to notice / Being part of a "family" though she will never admit it

    Dislikes::
    Nosy/clingy people / Surrendering control / Kids / Doctors – because they always tell her what she shouldn’t be able to do / Cheap liquor / People who abuse instruments by playing them badly / The Vanguard because it has gone after her "family"

    Strengths::Beyond her unmatched musical abilities…

    ■Derrick is fiercely loyal to the few that get past the aloof exterior. Since the Nevus this is also a potential liability as she has developed loyalties to two very different sides. Her Bakkhos "family", at least the few she respects, have her absolute loyalty, but she also has a cop that has garnered her respect and possibly… affection. This might be her undoing eventually.
    ■She has an uncanny ability to sense peoples intentions (not a power just a sixth sense); often able to determine if someone is watching her or setting her up. Because of this, she is pretty good at judging friend from foe or telling when someone is nervous or angry. Her hyper sensitive senses adds to this.
    ■She can do some pretty wicked things with a frying pan, some spices and a handful of vegetables. She has been cooking for herself since she left home.
    ■High alcohol tolerance (after all, she spends most every night playing in a club)…. though this might be seen as a weakness as well since she tends to get free drinks and forgets the food.

    Weaknesses::
    ■Being blind, though she sees it as an advantage and not a weakness. However it still does make her vulnerable in ways she refuses to admit.
    ■Headaches: The onset of her strange combat echo location has left her with violent headaches that are triggered with its overuse. The severity depends on how long the ability was utilized and how much she had to rely on it. The first time the ability surfaced, she lost consciousness for three hours and woke to vomiting and a headache that lasted for two more days. Seven years later, she has learned to control it so that it doesn’t engage unless she calls it.
    ■A bottled temper: She has a tendency to be very cool… aloof… even distant with people. She stays calm even when pushed, but then she gets pushed just one time too many and she snaps. Words rarely are used to express her anger, typically it’s her martial arts skills that do the “talking” for her. This has gotten her thrown out of more than one club in the past, even banned from certain concert venues in the years leading up to 2010.
    ■Her instruments: touch them and die… enough said
  • PERSONAL BELONGINGS
    The only things she would be devastated in losing would be her well-used (slightly scuffed) Marshall amps and her guitars, particularly two custom made for her and a vintage Fender Strat; her pet ferret Ceasar and a weathered leather jacket that a cop likely had no idea she had kept after their encounter when he used it to cover her.

    Beyond these, Derrick has a small loft near Bakkhos having refused to live in the hotel itself.

STAFF APPROVED ABILITIES/SKILLS/HISTORY

  • APPROVED ABILITIES
    Echo Location (not an altered ability): As a child she learned that she has abnormally strong hearing and that sound could bounce around objects and give her a map in her head of where things were. In an unfamiliar environment she will often click her tongue on the top of her mouth or step more loudly so she can “see” where and how big things are around her. While not always precision accurate it helped her develop skills that allowed her to function without the use of a cane. Utilized at this level since she was a child, it only developed even more sensitive hearing as well as a hypersensitive sense of touch as even the direction of the wind on her skin tells her things about the world around her.

    Combat Echo Location: Ability that emerged after the 2010 Nevus event. The keenly trained mind that already could echolocate and the body trained for fighting seemed to create the perfect receptacle for this new ability. When fight instincts start pumping her adrenalin, all sounds around her will flush a 3d echo location map in her mind… black shapes outlined with white “echos” of ants that highlight surface edges almost like night vision goggles. In the beginning, “seeing” shapes was still very confusing, often disorienting as much as aiding her in a fight since she didn’t recognize shapes as the objects they were. Seven years of adapting however has led to her being able to distinguish between living and inanimate objects, recognize metal versus soft surfaces, vehicles versus buildings. This also gives her a slight advantage in that she seems to be able to anticipate moves when in truth the sound of an initiated move shows in her map faster than it registers for the normal eye. The ability also comes at a price, while not debilitating while active, the longer and more focused its use, the longer and more violent her headaches are once it shuts down. Another side effect of this ability is the adrenalin masks pain. While this may be useful during a battle, it also means she will fight even when injuries dictate she should retreat. More than once she has put her own life in danger by fighting on when injuries were potentially life threatening.

    After second Nevus exposure in 2016 which further enhanced her already advanced sensory compensation, manifesting a higher level of telekinetic abilities.

    Telekinetic Projection: Ability to move and "throw" objects without touching them with a force twice the strength of a powerful human. Once fully developed, this ability will be able to manifest even in hand to hand combat situations, if only used for a one time hurl, it is uncertain what the limit might be, but used with precision and repeatedly she will only be able to manipulate 80-90lb objects for 100ft. When consciously used the effect will be similar to use of her combat location, mild headaches with light use, efforts to move at her max and for max distances are likely to cause nosebleeds and migraines. Used continuously in combat and she will likely lose consciousness.
    Current State of this Ability: this ability has been barely tapped. She only seems to access it when she is completely exhausted and angry. Anything small within a forty foot radius (less than 15 lbs) tend to bounce around on surfaces, fall off dressers or fling violently across a room. It has once shivered so furious a small car flipped down a street leaving her unconscious after. She has no real directional control yet as this ability only manifested in the last year and she is still trying to understand how to tap into it, let alone control it, however it has manifested twice with catastrophic outcomes; once in an autoshop, metal tools hurled with enough force to impale two men and blow through thin metal walls and the second time in warehouse where weapons were laying open, blood drawn again.

    Telekinetic Shield: Ability to throw up a "shield" to block moving objects. Once fully developed the shield will be no larger than 9ft diameter, so at best can protect herself and maybe two others. This is not a solid shield but rather true telekinetic barrier that slows objects but is not fully impenetrable. She can use it a max of 8 times in a row if kept up for less than 5 seconds (such as a block in combat) and only once if kept up for the maximum 2 minutes. Using this to its max will leave her unable to call on her other abilities as all are draining from the same mental resource. Attempts to push beyond the limit will likely render her unconscious.

    Current state of this Ability: This has become a more accessible ability. She first used it to while under great duress needing to save herself or another from certain death, but now she can pull it up with more control but still fights to protect more than herself and a single person.
  • APPROVED SKILLS
    Musician/Vocals: Having picked up her first guitar at seven, she has been playing ever since with a range that stretches from Jimi Hendrix to Kirk Hammett. She also has a deep rich voice that can match nearly every note in every range thanks to her highly tuned hearing, ideal for covering any female or male artists of the last century, enriching the sound with her rum-rich tones.

    Electronics (restricted to upkeep of amps and guitars): As most of her life has been devoted to her instruments, she has become an expert in maintaining and repairing them.

    Martial Arts: Pushed into classes by age three to “build her confidence”, she was actually nationally ranked in Aikido and Jujitsu by thirteen but later refused to participate anymore, mainly to piss off her mother but secretly because she felt she was given “easy” competitors to “cater” to her blindness and pity was something she couldn’t stand even back then. Now as an adult, the focused listening and feeling of vibrations has grown to a lethal art as she pushes her training to extreme levels to be sure she can protect her "family".
  • APPROVED HISTORY
    She was supposed to be a boy… her name carefully chosen to represent some obscure male in her father's lineage that had meant something to someone. Missing a dick was the first insult to her parents. Born blind… was the second. They were the perfect little Stepford neighborhood couple. She was PTA material and he was an architect and they were supposed to have their 2.3 kids.. golden retriever… and white picket fence. At least, that was what they were on the surface.

    Carlita Graziano was sister to Anthony Graziano, a New York mob crime boss underling making a name for himself. In the early 80's she was being courted by several high ranking Capos. Carlita could have been powerful in New York but she found herself gravitating to the white picket fences of the suburbs and the very "white" ladies that had perfect families and ran the school bake offs and with her Italian heritage not as obvious as her brothers, she knew she could have what she wanted.

    In a rare event, Carlita fled New York and managed to fall off the radar of not only her brother but the mob itself who was going through some upheaval as bosses fought for territories and the feds were ever hotter breathing down their necks.

    Edmond, Oklahoma became her "stepford" suburb. The beautiful streets and charming homes and the façade of life in perfection drew her like a moth to a flame. Renaming herself Joanna Wellington. She met Jacob Gray there and settled into a life of her plastic "perfection".

    But then, Derrick’s birth had pretty much ruined all that, by being female, by being blind, and by taking on a decidedly dark complexion and appearance in comparison to her light mother and strawberry blond father.

    To her mother’s credit the woman was so deep in denial of having created something imperfect that she refused to treat the girl as anything but sighted. It was probably the best thing she ever did for her daughter. From the time she could walk, Derrick was pushed into every after school activity that all her mother’s friends children were in, only she didn’t seem to discern girl and boy activities so Derrick was tossed into ballet and aikido… choir and soccer. When other parents gasped at the little blind girl getting knocked down, her mother would yell at her about how COULD she miss that coming?!... to which many of those fellow Stepford wives would cringe in horror of how heartless the woman was. She was crumbling her own façade long before Derrick rebelled and completed the task for her.

    Her mother taught her two very important lessons… she had no handicap…. and to never accept pity.

    Derrick was just two years old when she developed echo location abilities… lips popping as she wandered around the house, the sound bouncing and fading as ears began to learn to listen harder and detect walls and furniture. As she got older the skill refined, highly sensitive ears didn’t need the loud continuous pops anymore, her footsteps more often than not conducting enough sound to determine her surroundings. She also had the uncanny ability to look people directly in the eye with her hazed over orbs based on instant judgments about their height and position from the sounds they made, a fact that unnerved everyone except her mother who had insisted it was proper etiquette. Her mother had also taught her the proper way to blink and keep her eyelids open so she didn’t develop that “lazy” expression that other blind kids had. It was all about perfection for her mother.

    But twelve years of perfection with a healthy dose of religion shoved down her throat had Derrick primed to start rebelling. She quit her martial arts tournaments abruptly at fourteen. Partially because she was rarely allowed to have matches anymore without heavy supervision, she had injured several boys older than she with her "kill or be killed" approach, and partially to piss her mother off. Her mother and her locked in a screaming match for pretty much the next six months over it. After all her mother had something to brag about when Derrick had been nationally ranked. It declined from there. Derrick had been secretly learning guitar since she was seven at their neighbor’s house from a boy three years older than her. She had originally taken it up because she hated the piano lessons her mother made her take and because she had a crush on the ten year old who talked to her like she wasn’t blind.. but it grew into a passion that by fourteen had the boy not so fond of her anymore mainly because she could play circles around him. When he quit letting her come over to play his instrument, she wanted one of her own. Her mother refused but her normally distant shrugging father for once gave in.

    Soon she was garage banding with kids in all black clothes with pierced noses and black makeup leaving her mother appalled and Derrick feeling free for the first time, though soon the kids couldn’t keep up with her talent either. That was about the same time she squashed the last vestige of her mother’s hope, she quit going to church… of course her batty mother trying to have her exorcized…. TWICE! might have played a role in that.

    It was also about this time that Derrick started snooping through her mother's things when left alone in the house. She was looking for things that might be of value that she could pawn for the escape she was planning. Going through the very organized, perfectly stepford jewelry box she had plucked several rings and gold chains but it was one in particular that had caught her attention. A heavy bracelet with a thick plaque between that had been tucked under the false bottom of the box. Sensitive fingers had traced the engraving on the plate a thousand times pondering what it meant…. Carlita Graziano.

    It was amazing what one could find out at the library when the librarian pitied the "poor little blind girl" that couldn’t read. Nevermind the fact that she could speed read Braille faster than a sighted person could read a picture book. It had not taken much investigating to find out that Carlita was the missing sister of one Anthony Graziano, a mob consigliere in New York.

    Derrick put two and two together. Her original plan had been to head for California, live on the street while she tried to be "discovered" for her talent. Instead, she planned for New York.

    She was fourteen when she got on the back of a boys motorcycle and headed for the east coast with her guitar on her back and about $200 bucks in her pocket. She intended to track down her Uncle, perhaps he would understand her desire to play and help her achieve what she wanted The fact that he was mob affiliated didn’t really phase her, after all, he couldn’t be worse than her nutty mother.

    But an accident on the open roads of Ohio near Columbus that nearly put an end to any future she might have. The boy had been killed instantly, her guitar shattered and her right thigh was missing most of the upper layers of skin where she had slid along the concrete at over forty miles an hour. She spent nearly a month in the hospital as social workers tried to find out who the “poor little blind girl” was… needless to say she wasn’t talking.

    Hearing the soft clucking behind her back was what really chilled the girl’s disposition. She became cool and aloof, never reacting to good or bad news anymore. When they finally released her it was to a youth home since they had no idea where she belonged. She ran away within the first week and finished the journey she had started, hitching to New York without a cent in her pocket nor a guitar to play on.

    She asked enough questions in New York to attract the attention of the mob quickly, a fact she nearly paid for as she had a gun pushed in her mouth before she had managed to free the bracelet from her pocket to dangle as evidence she wasn’t crazy. While Anthony took her in, the manhunt for her mother had begun. She had betrayed the "family" and that just wasn’t done. Anthony was in the middle of several indictments that had him sure his niece should be distanced from him and New York.

    With a bank account of her own, she was put on a plane with some very expensive guitar equipment, a new bracelet of her own that had her name emblazoned on its inner shield and flown to Los Angelos to "make something" of herself just months before Anthony was sent to prison for eleven years. The account was enough for her to find an apartment and start playing the club scenes which led to a contract when she was fifteen, one that quickly taught her how evil the world could be. She went into hiding waiting for the record label contract to expire.

    When it finally expired, it took her only a short while to get herself on her own feet. Becoming the most sought after guitarist on the west coast club scene.

    She quickly made it to the big time, asked to guest-play with real bands… famous groups that went on tour with her and often asked her to join but she liked the freedom to play with any and all of them. But then came the breakdown at Lollapalooza. She had been pushed for weeks by the “big boys”… taunted about her big guitar being too much for her to handle.. even by guitarists that damn well knew she could play and play circles around them. But when one decided to take it farther and stick his hand down her cargoes in front of some guitarist she respected… she lost it. Two broken fingers, a broken nose and three smashed guitars later (none of which were her injuries or instruments) she was “asked” in no uncertain terms to leave. She had been twenty-one at the time.

    It took two years before she wanted to play with “real” bands again. An encouraging letter from her Uncle coming just as she was deciding she enjoyed the refuge of small clubs with local bands who were happy to have her. She had never had encouragement that didn’t seem to want anything from her. There was a symphonic concert coming in New York with several big metal bands. She could go and play the big leagues, and then visit her Uncle in prison. She didn’t care what he had done, he understood her…… it was 2010, and she never made the concert.

    Stuck in a city she didn’t know well in a world that was up heaving she took to the shadows of forgotten districts in the hope of surviving the chaos. Comforted by three guitars that had survived the missed concert even though their original owners had not. When the noise died down she hunted for her Uncle, the prison destroyed in the Nevus was littered with bodies but also with avenues of escape, she couldn’t tell if he was among the dead or had escaped.

    Slowly she learned her way around and kept out of everyone else’s way. She was mugged three months later which brought on her first combat echo location episode. She managed to break the guys windpipe and was fortunate she had killed him, because the moment it was over and the disorienting shapes went away, she was unconscious. The next two days spent hurling and in pain, hoping it would never happen again.

    With the creation of the EAA things seemed to stabilize and she started to work her way into the club scene again, but that was when a Vanguard nutjob wannabe started following her. Her ability to navigate her world despite her blindness was “clearly” a sign of “magical abilities”. Accused first of being Altered and then of being infected the guy had tried to kill her… she instead returned the favor.

    It was after this that Derrick gave up the limelight of the trendiest hotspots for the dank dark stages of back-alley hole in the wall dives which was what probably insulated her from the zombie invasion, and gang wars. There was just not a large enough or healthy enough crowd in the places she frequented to draw attention. But she still relentlessly searched for the family that had supported her when no one else had, given her the chance to play when no one else thought she should. And all that searching caught the attention of Angelo Gaspari. A Capo crew member had been sent to the hovel of a hotel room she was holed up in but unfortunately had acted the tough guy and not really explained who he was nor why he was there. While the Capo had been furious, Angelo had been amused that Graziano's niece had dropped the crew like a cheap suit. He had come himself to fetch her out of the slums.

    It was Angelo that had told her of her Uncle's death, it was also Angelo that gave her a safe place to play again while grooming her for a position in the new world he was creating. It didn’t take long for her to become the man's bodyguard, lie detector, "bug", even arms buyer. Derrick had an uncanny knack for telling if a batch of bullets was second rate or not. The sound of the casing was distinct when it was cheap and likely to blow up on them, a hazard of the new world. While he has trained her, he hasn’t tried to change her and it is this "respect" that has garnered her loyalty. She is his personal bodyguard and often that of the other Boss' as well.

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  1. Grand Opening

    Steps being descended were heard a moment before the cheers came around her. Looked like Boone was making an early entrance tonight. His shape was easily recognized as he accepted a drink and climbed onto the bar. Enough business had been done between him and Gaspari with her in attendance that his form was "familiar" to her. Brow quirked as he played "host" to his crowd on the altar of booze. Ya… this was not a threat for Bakkhos. This was a leprechaun's paradise. Smirk lit her lips as she waited for the outlined bartender's form to "glance" her way, a nod as she slid the glass to him to indicate another. Sensitive ears listened to the owner's banter with his guests. He was in his element it seemed. She offered a nod to Hagan as another Yorsh was slid her way just as Boone took up a seat just beyond her boots. "Nice suit." Glass paused before her lips as she raised a brow at him. Other one's at the cleaners…. else I would have dressed up for your grand opening… His sarcasm was easily matched by her own as she glanced around the bar. She had to admit, it was a different kind of fun but the patrons seemed no less happy than at a Bakkhos venue. Quite the little bar….. for a leprechaun…. Smirk played on her lips before the glass came up to them, tainted dark beer going down easily.
  2. Grand Opening

    Why me? The growl whined half under her breath. His chuckle only irritating her more. NPC: Because you will learn all there is to know about the place in one night while it would take months for the less.. observant. ……… Huff exhaled her lips, rogue strand of mahogany flipping away from her features only to fall back right where it had begun, escaped from the leather band at the nape of her neck that held the remaining delinquent locks back. Gaspari was right. She hated when he was right. But he was right. Hands crammed into her jean pockets as booted soles struck pavement louder than normal, letting her "see" the path without engaging abilities, sensitive ears registering every vibration against surfaces creating a map as it echo located. The vintage Doors tee hung threadbare over her lean frame. Once black background now fluttered over her black jeans as a dark gray, the three quarter sleeves hiding most of the parasitic tattoo, leaving just the lower part of her arm and back of her hand covered in the tribal looking ebony markings, a few swaths peeking above the frayed collar on the side of her neck on the same side. She hated when he was right. She stopped in front of the door that smelled of liquor, the sound of music and pool balls striking beyond its hinges. This was it. Get in and get out. That would be the plan. Only problem was to know "everything" about the place as Gaspari wanted, she would need to hang and drink for a few hours. Brilliant. Knee nudged the door open, the dark circle shades catching light of the interior but continuing to shield her secret from the world. Boone was family only in so far as, thus far he had proven he could clean up the Bakkhos books and not appear to steal from them. Very few in the family knew what the shades hid and he was not one of those few. The opening of this place had been "watched" to see if it was a challenge to the Bakkhos empire, but all signs pointed to the fact that it was not in the least. It was a casual hang out. The type of place Bakkhos didn’t tend to own. She hadn't had many interactions with Boone but he didn’t strike her as the sort to get any kick out of challenging something like Bakkhos. She suspected this was exactly what it looked like… an everyday man's hang out. Crack of a clean break turned her head slightly, the warm tingle starting at the back of her neck as she engaged her map, white ants beginning to crawl over the darkness in her mind to outline shapes. People spotted first, the furniture and walls soon followed. She watched a good game for a few shots before heading for the bar. Straddling the stool that sat against the wall she placed a foot on the stool beside, a clear "fuck off" body language that was likely to be respected in a place like this. People came here to relax, not show off their latest conquest or how shiny their watch was. NPC: Getcha? Gruff voice of the bartender drew her attention, it was warm without being pushy. Yorsh.. He either was going to go "what" or go make it. The glass clinking on the glass meant he knew exactly what it was and wasn’t questioning it being ordered by a woman. Vodka didn’t have a scent unless you had a nose that could detect what others couldn’t. It was a decent vodka that he added to the bold beer. The second clink betraying he was doubling the shot. So… they didn’t skimp on the liquor either. Nice. The tall glass slid to her, agile fingers easily catching it with a nod. Thanks…. To be honest. The place was more her type than the club. A fact she wasn’t going to disclose to Gaspari in her report.
  3. And the Adventure Continues...?

    [atticus]Thank you.[/atticus] The relief in his sigh bristled her senses. She was annoyed at the world more than him but he was an easy and accessible target at the moment. [derrick]….ya well… get one thing clear Mighty Mouse….ain't doin' it for you.[/derrick] She could almost hear the giddy in his voice and the fidget of his legs. God damn… a kid that just got a new toy and somehow she was the plaything. [atticus] How ‘bout you give me a call in five days. I’ll pick you up. Anything you need for the trip, I’ll reimburse you, or text me a list. It’s the least I can do.[/atticus] Shrug was indifferent as she stuffed her hands into the pockets of the leather blazer. [derrick]…tend to travel light. Just be sure we got a stocked bar.[/derrick] It didn’t take the edge off as much as it used to which meant an already bad habit was exasperated. Based on their few encounters she figured he had already picked up she only drank high end bar fare. The good shit was expensive these days since no one made half of them anymore, why would she pay for it while on "his" trip. The rest… well she wasn’t lying, she travelled light. Her duffle would cover her. Head shook thinking about him picking her up. Something she had still avoided was him knowing where she lived. So few did. [derrick]…will meet you back here in five days around six…..better be here or you risk me changing my mind Mouse.[/derrick]
  4. And the Adventure Continues...?

    [atticus] Believe me, if you weren’t an essential component to this riddle, I’d leave you here. As it is, YOU are. And it’s not like you have much of a choice. Your body is deteriorating, Mason. I don’t know how long you have. Months? Weeks? Your survival is reliant upon helping me find this particular Nevusian shard. [/atticus] Scowl was etched across her brow as she slumped hips against the side of the recliner. It wasn’t exactly deterioration. At least she didn’t think so. It was more a parasitic/host relationship. Of course some parasites ate their host. So…maybe he was right. Lot of things she hadn't told him either. Like the fact that it amped and played havoc with her abilities. Was it "using" her up? What the HELL did it want with her? She was suddenly aware he was strangely silent. Brow quirked. The damn scientist was pondering her death and likely that it made it easier for him to slug along her body than her "charming" self. Huff escaped her lips as she scowled down at hands that fidgeted in front of her hips, right fingers tugging at her left to pull joints apart until they cracked, bad habit of a musician. Sensitive ears listened as he slid up onto a counter nearby. His breath adjusted in height betraying he had moved from sitting up to slumping over. He didn’t know what the hell to make of it all either. Great. Hands switched to run the same habit through her right fingers, pausing when he spoke again. [atticus] Your ability. The way you perceive the world. It simply can’t be coincidence. Too many variables are lining up. [/atticus] Last digit was stretched before hands moved to her features, dark shades lifting out of the way as the heels of her hands rubbed against tired eyes. Waiting for her. Great. [derrick]…stalked by a damn crack in the sky.[/derrick] Mutter was soft as hand slid behind her to drag the harness from the chair, arm sliding through one strap before snaking it behind her to tuck the other in. The custom leather slid so perfectly tight to her form it was hard to comprehend how agilely she had removed it while still under the leather blazer. Hips pushed back onto the seat as she pondered options. Problem was…. she couldn’t think of any. [atticus] I have a plane lined up. A direct flight. If all goes well, we’re looking at a week, tops. A few days of your time and you’ll have the rest of your life….. If all goes well, that is. [/atticus] One option was to tell him to go fuck himself and walk out. Wasn’t a good option…. but it was an option. [derrick]….can't just up and leave…..need to….. check in with some people.[/derrick] Mutter had a hint of defeated acceptance. Fuck… Gaspari was going to kill her. One week? Ya right. Her trip to Italy had been scheduled for three weeks. Took five. Of course if they had not been delayed, Mighty Mouse and that dumb ass cop would have drowned in the living storm. There were pros and cons to that thought. [derrick]Fuck…….[/derrick] Soft swear seemed to completely acquiesce before chin turned to half look towards the Nord. [derrick]….ok Mighty Mouse…. Egypt it is.[/derrick] Slipping off the recliner she snatched the leather blazer, shrugging it over her shoulders, the twin glocks under her arms vanishing as though they never existed. [derrick]….need couple days to get things sorted first.[/derrick]
  5. And the Adventure Continues...?

    [atticus]Incredible.[/atticus] [derrick]…annoying.[/derrick] Her own mutter correcting his more "rosy glasses" view of the situation. [atticus] These are the same markings produced on the Menhir via your contact. Less detailed of course, due to the two dimensional nature, but the same nonetheless. The triangles, however, are anomalous.[/atticus] [derrick]…ya think?[/derrick] The rhetorical mutter came as the tank was pulled from the back of the chair and dropped back over her head, arms snaking through the holes before the long tail of mahogany was pulled free to pool behind her. She wondered if she should mention the patterns changed regularly. [atticus]Giza.[/atticus][derrick]..huh?[/derrick] Wasn’t her most eloquent response but she wasn’t entirely sure she had heard him right. She knew what Giza was, she had gone to school after all, she just wasn’t sure what the hell the pyramids had to do with this mess. [atticus] The three pyramids will show us the way.[/atticus][derrick]Wait…what?[/derrick] Show them the way to what exactly?? She just wanted the damn parasite to quit interfering with her life. [atticus] We’re going to Egypt.[/atticus][derrick]Excuse me?!?[/derrick] She stood off the recliner abruptly, harnessed glock sliding down the recliner back to rest on the vacated seat having been seamlessly slid off along with her leather blazer. [derrick]…why the hell I gotta go to Egypt??[/derrick] There was a tightness in her voice. She had managed to stay off the ocean waters for nearly a year now. She had a healthy fear of water, it did horrible things to her perception and the near drowning experience had not exactly alleviated her of that fear.
  6. And the Adventure Continues...?

    She paced the landing grumbling under her breath. This wasn’t the first oddity in the last five months, it was just the final straw. That was why she was now tearing down his door and demanding answers. She couldn’t take more. She had nearly been injured in an altercation between the family and an upstart gang last week when the damn triangles turned up as solid forms in her enhanced map causing her to miss the location of one of the assailants. [atticus] You’ve established a psychic connection with the Menhir? [/atticus] [derrick]…always had one… its just getting fuckin' pushy.[/derrick] She snapped as she pushed past him even as he invited her to follow to the lab so he could take a better look. She let him pass to lead the way as she shook her shoulders to chase away the cold bite from outside. [atticus]I'm very sorry we lost touch. I’ve been meaning to get a hold of you [/atticus] Snort flushed from her nostrils dismissively. [derrick]….don't bullshit a bullshitter…. you aint sorry nor did you mean to do any kind of reaching out.[/derrick] Hand went up to push stray strands of mahogany from in front of her face, flipping them back over her head as they made it into the lab. [derrick]… you would'a preferred something you could dissect and keep in jars out here to study…[/derrick] His admiration of her living tattoos only drew a faint snort as she moved into the open space. Frown descending over her shades as the soft mutter came nearly under her breath. [derrick]….its not here….[/derrick] There was a faint tinge of relief in the words. She couldn’t explain how she knew… she just knew. [atticus] Please, remove your shirt and sit back. [/atticus] Leather blazer was already slipping off her shoulders as she followed his steps to the corner, flushing her map just a moment to identify the recliner as she tossed the leather onto the back of the seat. Long fingers tucked under the hem of the tank to slip it over her head, long tail of mahogany curling up into the neck before flopping down against her bare back. Modesty was not something that fully registered with the headliner, never had. Visual stimulations held no meaning in her world. The fact that she was naked from the waist up didn’t draw any hesitation as she dropped her hips into the recliner, long legs straddling the seat. Ebony covered her entire left half from the side of her neck and disappearing into the waistband of her pants. It was as though she was halfway through a Polynesian body sleeve tattoo. Sitting up away from the back, she held out her left arm, the entire length more ebony than flesh toned anymore as the tribal fingers engulfed the musculature. Inside of the forearm bore a triple image of triangles smaller than those that sat on her collarbone, something she showed before the left arm lifted over her head to show the triple image that was etched over her rib cage on the left side, the largest of the sets as the three triangles wrapped from nearly her abs to the center of her spine in the back. All three sets were sized different but their relative dimensions and spacing were arithmetically precise. [derrick]….what the fuck does it want from me Mighty Mouse?[/derrick] Frown marred her expression as hands dropped into her lap almost defeated. She was tired…living with the parasite had started to rob her of sleeping and eating. [derrick]…what the hell do triangles hafta do with anything?[/derrick]
  7. Not so warm homecoming...

    Fingers against her lethal hands drew the softest growl in her chest before it silenced again, her dark shades recovered and now pressed into her fingers. [josef]Well ain't that a daisy.[/josef] [derrick]….its nothing.[/derrick] She didn’t need anyone's help. No….. that wasn’t what rankled her skin. She didn’t need anyone's pity. It was more than that even. She liked his company. It was the thought of his pity that had the anger in the pit of her gut. Every gushing word from the woman fueled fire. Her fault. For the observant, sound had dwindled and the snow falls were pausing in the air in a thirty foot radius as snow clumps that sat loose on the ground had begun to rise into the still air. The huff of nostrils near her caused the chin to faintly tip towards his Cat as she tossed her head gently, animals far more aware of the change than humans who tended to miss the warning signs when her anger was raging and not fully under control. Caesar was smart enough to find a hiding place when it happened. [josef] You dun wanna do that. She’s very good at not being kind. If I were you, best keep yourself talkin’ to me, you won’t like the outcome if you don’t. [/josef] Seemed Cat wasn’t the only one that knew the danger. Strangely enough that it was acknowledged by him brought a smoothing to the hackles bristling at the back of her neck. Clumps of snow had drifted downward again as she breathed deeper. She listened as he walked the demon spawn back to the stables. Breath finally huffing from her lips as the air once more moved, snow fell again and Cat shook her head and stepped closer a hoof pawing the ground once as if demanding the headliner come over. [derrick]…what?.... [/derrick] Hoof hit the ground again, the sound light, not aggressive but communicative. Frowning she tilted her head to side glance to where the animal stood. [derrick]….I said what?...[/derrick] Hand was rubbing the damaged shoulder, acutely aware that tattoos were "crawling" over her skin, extending further across her collarbone and up the side of her neck in agitated protest of the damage. Heat of nostrils that were extending towards her injured arm exploded across her cheek despite the distance still between them. It knew. Somehow it knew what was going on under the cover of her clothing. Frown huffed back at the animal. Soft words grumbled at the creature. [derrick]..stop that… people are entitled to their secrets.[/derrick] His whistle shivered her shoulders as she stepped away from the animal that trotted to his side as he approached. [josef]….. I know you’re hurt. Fallen off enough to know what sounds make bruises. [/josef] Head shook a she let go the shoulder. Quiet words spoken to no one in particular. [derrick]…cockroach….remember…. I survive.[/derrick] She listened to the animal near him, scent of his skin suddenly warmer on the cold winds. That hot breath she had felt from so far away must be right on his skin. Musk and cinnamon. Take care of her shoulder. Brows knit slightly downward as she shook her head. Hand falling away from the angry injury, acutely aware the ebony tattoo had crept far up the side of her neck in protest. [derrick]…. just a bruise.[/derrick] Glance over her shoulder as she murmured the words was dangerous because it wasn’t pointed towards the stables, but the front office they had originally come through. The Bakkhos pit bull was not so narrow minded as to blame the horse, her attention was right where the blame should go. The injury was only half the blame. Exposing her was a downright unforgiveable offense. And "family" didn’t tend to forgive…… nor forget. "Gaze" came back around to him, shoulders shrugging as hands slid into the soft front pocket, seeking some warmth on the chilled digits. [derrick]… weredogs do lot more damage that some undersexed horse.[/derrick]
  8. And the Adventure Continues...?

    She wasn’t a patient person. As silence rewarded her, the pounding on the door and demand for the Nord was repeated. She was about to hit the thing again when ears picked up the first whisper of electric connection through a speaker. About damn time. [atticus] Go and peddle your religious views somewhere else.[/atticus] Oh hell no he didn’t! [atticus]Hey, Mason. Long time no….[/atticus] He wasn’t getting another word in as her own snapped him off, foot hitting the center of the door with enough force to actually leave a mark on the surface. [derrick]….cut the shit Mighty Mouse! Get down here and open this door.[/derrick] Chin lifted, sure somewhere there was a camera she should be glaring into as she snapped open the button on her leather blazer and shrugged it off. Right hand snatched the gray top strap on her left shoulder to shove it off, the braless skin underneath exposed. The tribal markings were thick and wild over her flesh as they undulated from her neck all the way down her arm, but that wasn’t the reason she had exposed it. There was a set of marks that were out of place even in the amalgam of unnatural etchings. Across the breadth of her collarbone were three triangles, two large and one slightly smaller. Their hard edged lines glaringly prevalent among the more organic designs. [derrick]…get your ass down here and explain why yer fuckin' rock keeps showing me three triangles![/derrick] It had started a couple months ago but had magnified in recent weeks to the point where she could barely function. What was really infuriating was she had no clue what they were supposed to mean. [derrick]…my dreams…. my waking moments… on my fuckin' skin.. in my music… always these three god damn triangles.[/derrick] Nostrils flared beneath the dark shades. She was pissed…and agitated. It was difficult to tell which was more prevalent at the moment.
  9. Not so warm homecoming...

    She really did like when he laughed. The sound was delicious, his accent came through with a natural tone that was melodic in a way that she rarely heard anymore. [josef]Now there's an honest reaction I don’t get often, usually the words are a bit more of a question.[/josef] Smirk quirked a brow up over the dark shades. [derrick]…don’t go holdin' your breath.[/derrick] His feigned "pain" at her not trusting him only drew a bit bigger smirk from her lips before the great challenge was laid before her. Heart thundered in her chest as she clung to his back to ensure he couldn’t place her beside the beast. [derrick]…happy…?[/derrick][josef]Are you?[/josef][derrick]…not particularly at the moment.[/derrick] Words brushed across his ear and neck with a husk that had dropped an octave, betraying a hint of the wide range she had. [josef] Ain’t gonna push ya to do something you don’t want, but this is progress.[/josef] The single laugh was faintly strained. [derrick]Progress?...and here I thought it was a new brand of torture.[/derrick] Breath was less strained the longer she stood there. The beast wasn’t trying to eat her so that was something. No… there weren't many people around. Her current posture would cause more than one raised brow in the family. That thought made her fingers begin to relax as well. This was compromising, not in the found in bed with the Boss's girl compromising, but for the pit bull that kept the family safe, this was compromising. As he offered to walk with her latch-keyed to him her nostrils huffed hot along his neck with more of her old self beginning to settle the shiver in her spine. Fingers were just beginning to unwind their grip on his coat when the sound caught her, hooves echoing on wood and metal giving way. They had not made it far down the track and the locomotive was covering the distance faster than a damn racecar. It was amazing how fast fear of the creature beside him turned into a protective battle stance. She had barely time to pivot to face the charging stallion when he was there, rearing up, hoof hitting her shoulder and sending her flying back. She narrowly missed hitting the cajun but the hindquarters of his Cat were not as lucky. Ribs hit the horse before being spun around towards the ground. Hip hit the track with enough violence that had the snow not been layered a couple inches it might have fractured her damn bone. Instead it drew a thick exhale of air as the wind temporarily knocked out of her, sunglasses lost into the bank at the edge of the track as she turned onto her back and drew a deep settling breath. Hands planted behind her head as feet rocked up before springing back up onto her feet with an unnaturally feline grace as she dropped a hand nearly back to the ground between her knees, once more between the stallion and her walking companions. Hoodie had fallen back and ponytail half pulled free releasing mahogany tendrils into the biting wind like a winter witch as she pulled up to her full height. [derrick]…back up!....[/derrick] The snap of her tone was directed at of all things, the stallion, not the Cajun she now seemed to be protecting. Power had amped up and in the blink of an eye the stallion staggered sideways as though something had struck it. The only evidence something had happened was the few stray flakes of snow that drifted in front of her had suddenly travelled horizontally towards the stallion. Snort was explosive as the full body reared on her, hooves snapping at the air. [derrick]…just like every other little dicked pissant showin' off like he's somebody![/derrick] Her snarl was half under her breath as she took a menacing step towards the dangerously airborne hooves. This time the effect was more pronounced, thicker snowfall was struck by her telekinetic shield as it pushed forward and slapped the stallion on his exposed underbelly forcing the hind legs to stagger and the front to drop back to the ground. She had never appreciated how unnerving it was to be stared down by sightless eyes that somehow still managed to track accurately thanks to her nutter mother. More than one person had asked her not to do that to them, just another reason she hid behind her shades. Gaspari was one of the few that didn’t care and preferred her glasses off when they were alone. He respected however that even half the family had no clue she was blind and thus did not enforce the request when others were around. Apparently people were not the only ones that found it unnerving. The stallion pawed the ground as his head swayed in front of her, the woman's shoulders rising and falling with powerful breaths as she glared white orbs at the creature. The stallion shifted forward as though to charge and she shifted forward right with him, unblinking sightless eyes daring him to cross some invisible line. Nostrils flared on both sides of the line but only one set finally lowered and as they did her own snorted with a faint satisfaction. [npc]…oh my god![/npc] The woman was running out towards them, instantly the headliner turned away from the approaching caretaker, aware that in doing so she faced the Cajun and exposed clear as day her secret. Frown crossed her brow when her gaze came to rest where she knew he was as she tugged her hoodie up and down over her head to shadow her features and unnatural eyes from the hysterical female. She left the bitch to the Cajun as the stallion paced still agitated back and forth nearby. Hand moved to rub on the shoulder that was angry from the strike. The patterns beneath her sweatshirt shifting and burning around the blossoming bruise. Well this was just perfect little afternoon stroll….
  10. Not so warm homecoming...

    [josef]Relax luv.[/josef] There was a soft snort at the term, skittish muscles jumping under the sweater almost in time with the stallion. The two had more in common than she realized. She wasn’t that different from a wild stallion and at times just as difficult to approach. [josef]He's just interested in my Cat, dun give two shits about you.[/josef] Another snort from her nostrils was mimicked from behind the stall door. She would have let it go except…. It happened so fast and her fist was drawn back. She had enough sense to not throw the punch but it was so tempting until the warmth of his skin wrapped over her knuckles. Flinch that ran through her cheek was violent as she froze. She had decked people for less. She didn’t deck him. Why didn’t she deck him? Hand fell when he let go, stuffed away in the joey pocket as he talked about how cold it would be outside and offered a last time the jacket she didn’t see. Did he miss the part where she had been half asleep on a tomb in the snow. The cold helped numb her skin, helped temper the hyper sensitivity that she had suffered from most her life. It was one of the reasons her clothing tended to be so incredibly soft and smooth. Head shook as she followed him out. The bite of the cold drew a deep breath, enjoying its nip in her lungs as she kept an "acceptable" distance from the massive creature. [josef]…she's an extension of me…[/josef][derrick]….like my guitars….[/derrick] The words were soft… not really meant for him as she thought out loud. It was odd to think a creature could be that extension like she felt when that resonant chamber cradled in her arms. [josef] Polo player and traditional rider, not many good polo games anymore though. Now you know my deep, dark secret.[/josef] Polo?....that sounded sort of familiar. It was a game of some kind with horses right? [derrick]…cant say I have ever been fortunate enough to take in a..um… polo?...game[/derrick] He stopped. The lack of steps caught as she ended up slightly ahead of him and the beast. "Glancing" over her shoulder she quirked a brow at him. [josef]Don’t seem like the kind to piss yourself at a pony Mason.[/josef][derrick]Fuck you Boudreaux[/derrick] There was a tilt upward of her lips as she bantered at him. She was more relaxed but there was the ever present threat of a skittish stallion under her skin. [josef] Now you have a chance to be around one, one worth knowing. You woman enough to touch, I’m man enough to keep her still.[/josef] Nostrils snorted at the goading. She didn’t goad. However……. she didn’t back down from a dare either. He had knowingly or unknowingly walked her into a no win situation. [derrick]…hey… I don’t have anythin' against your Cat. It's you I think I don’t trust.[/derrick] Smirk played over her lips. It was rare her features were this relaxed, the scowl normally an almost permanent etching over her brow. He was between her and the beast, that she knew. Didn’t make it feel any "safer". Breath huffed between her lips as she pushed her gift outward, white ants beginning to crawl over the edges of the man and horse making them one large shape. Faint frown stained her brow as she tried to decipher the two. Step closer was hesitant, the tilt of her head clearly skeptical. She stepped again, this time also slightly to her left because she recognized his head above the amalgamated mass. He was staying between her and that thing. Several more tentative steps closed the distance as her heart rammed in her chest. Before he could do anything she was slightly behind him. There was no family around, they were in the middle of nowhere, she was ok with showing a little "weakness". Hand reached out and snatched the back of his coat, curling the fabric inside her tight fist as she pulled herself close to his back. She didn’t get this close… to anyone. Her breath wisped near his ear a bit rapidly as she refused to let go his coat. [derrick]….happy…?[/derrick] There was the slightest tinge of strain in her tone. She faced a werewolf without fear. This… this had her heart thundering in her throat.
  11. Not so warm homecoming...

    [josef]Always found it hard to tell the difference.[/josef] [derrick]….ya…..there is that….[/derrick] There was something in her tone. Something dark and far too understanding of his statement. That had been her whole life… wondering what people wanted her for… her talent… her money… or just to steal a moment in her spotlight for themselves. It had been better since the Nevus… but there were hints of that life returning to haunt her. Frown marred the brow above her shades before head shook a bit to wipe the shadow away. Muscle through her spine flinched at the clink of the tack, stepping again away from the snort of his "Cat" only to get way too close to the stallion that slammed the stall door just a foot behind her causing a jump and spin that had a glock leveled at the black nostrils flaring at her before anyone could blink. The stare down lingered, her nostrils flaring almost in sync with the stallion whose wild eyes glared down the barrel of her weapon. She finally exhaled with an exasperated snort and slid the glock deftly back under her sweater where it disappeared as though she wore no harness beneath. Mutter under her breath was clearly annoyed. [derrick]…stupid animal….[/derrick] [josef]Cat's not an animal. Cat's a work of art.[/josef] Her frown was skeptical as she continued to glare at the stallion only to be surprised by the wet breath on her cheek. Jump back had the reflex of a feline, back slamming the stable door only to have the stallion slam his hoof against it in return. Thick 'oof' escaping her lips as the wind half knocked out of her. [derrick]…why you….[/derrick] She turned, hand cocked to punch the damn beast. [josef]Iffin’ you want to come along there’s a jacket and a few scarves on my coat hooks on the back wall. Gloves are in the pocket. Ain’t leather and swank. My old riding jacket and digs… bit on the old pudgy side I am.[/josef] Hand fell to her side as she listened to his chuckle. Mutter under her breath unheard in words but whose tone was clearly swearing like a bawdy sailor as her steps quickly followed his own. Head shook at the offer. No way in hell she was staying in there with that….. thing. [derrick]….am fine.[/derrick] Half under her breath the words came as she stuffed her hands deep into the joey pocket to stave off the bite of winter as they exited the building. Her steps a good fifteen feet off to his right to ensure she could get a head start on that beast he was walking. She was SO not an animal person. As they walked silently she slid her hands out of her pocket to flip the hoodie up, tucking the miles of mahogany tail up into its depths before hands vanished again. Ears kept careful track of their steps and any drift in her direction was matched by her own feet with a drift away. [derrick]….never um… was around animals… not so much as a goldfish growing up.[/derrick]
  12. And the Adventure Continues...?

    October 11, 2019; 3pm CONTINUED FROM: "SANDS OF TIME" In the beginning she had kept in touch with the Nord. The potential of finding a solution to disentangle herself from the creature that seemed to inhabit her very consciousness was too great a pull. But quickly the novelty of finding answers wore off as "science" did not progress at a pace to assuage the headliners impatience to put it all behind her. She had given up on coming to any conclusions with the big man. Besides, life needed her. The club, the family, the stadium.....even, maybe, their ammunitions dealer.... needed her. So rather than keep coming to his lab and being disappointed with the lack of results, she had gone back to her "normal life". …. or at least she had tried to. There was a wild aggression in her playing that even Gaspari had picked up on. The crowds went nuts for it but her band and her own hands were suffering to keep up. And then there was sleep.. or rather the lack there of. The shades these days were covering dark circles under her eyes as she fought sleep with as much ferocity as she played with. In the darkness of slumber, in the depths of her dreams, "it" was far too active. But it stopped waiting for her dreams, whispering now in her waking moments. All her damn waking moments! Jeans hung long over her thick soled boots as she marched in the direction of the lab he had started this all in. Hands were jammed into the front pockets, pushing the hem of the fitted brown leather blazer up as the afternoon breeze kicked up the loose mahogany strands. White outlines blazed furiously as she let the gift burn to ensure a smooth hunt, she had no time for tripping over unfamiliar curbs as she sought to avoid all people in her beeline course to the Nord. Growl was half under her breath as she arrived and realized the fence was closed and locked. Perfect! Lips moved as she swore and muttered under her breath about now being a spider. Long limbs made quick work of climbing the chain link. Telekinetic shield pressed down on the barbed wire at the top so she could slide over and drop to the ground on the other side. Silent alarms were likely already going off. She wasn’t exactly "sneaking" in as she took the steps up to the door two at a time. Knock was an understatement as the side of her fist pounded the thick door with enough force to cause reverberating echoes both inside and out. Brows were snarled over the dark shades as she pounded again. [derrick]…'EY…. MIGHTY MOUSE![/derrick] Patience was definitely not her virtue at the moment.
  13. Not so warm homecoming...

    The deep laugh bubbled up and actually enticed her lips to turn faintly upward once more. It was a good sound. A really good sound. It had been a while since she had heard a person make a really good sound, such things were only coaxed out of her instruments these days. People's noises…voices….. were too full of sanctimonious self righteousness, malice, false bravado or lies. His laugh was honest. As was the soft darkness that crept into his words as a dark memory passed a shadow over his comment. His voice shifted as he spoke to the woman behind the counter. Not exactly dishonest, just not…..real. As they moved away she couldn’t help but comment. [derrick]…far too much honey in that old milk. [/derrick][josef]You're terrible..[/josef] Her turn to snort a faint laugh as she added… [derrick]….pretty sure she help you piss and lick honey off ya at the same time… all for free.[/derrick] Words smirked quietly as head shook, following slightly behind his left shoulder. She had not only heard it in the woman's voice but could smell it on her as well. [josef]It's just the money, my prince of Orleans ass never been much to look at anyway.[/josef] Snort came again. [derrick]…trust me… that reaction was no cream for your cash.[/derrick] Back of her neck bristled as the gush of warm air came from overhead. But it wasn’t the warm air that really caused the small hairs to raise. It was the sudden assault of animal. Feet paused as senses were assaulted. Hot breaths escaped flaring nostrils all around her, hoofs stomping on the soft hay covered earth, heady scent of large equines nearly enticing her to pass out. Fuck…..fuck fuck fuck… Lips barely parted as she took the next several breaths through her mouth instead, a trick she learned long ago when scents became overwhelming. It took the edge off. She was relieved he had kept walking to his animal. She took the seconds to get her wits before feet moved again on the cobblestone path to follow. As he undid the latch of what she had to assume was its stall, she kept a healthy distance. As he moved in a large beast behind her stomped against its door, the pounding of hoof against wood causing her to whip around, her own tail of mahogany fluttering in a curve behind her as she scowled at the creature as though it had done it on purpose. [josef]Iffin you're not a horse person…[/josef] [derrick]….huh?..[/derrick] It took a second to register what he had said as her back remained to the cajun, scowl at the dark animal behind its door still present as it snorted and kicked the ground again. Mutter was faintly under her breath. [derrick]….. not an animal person.[/derrick] [josef]Got time for a walk, or you need to be somewhere? She needs a walk, not a ride, but I can take you home first.[/josef] [derrick]…and miss lady hot pants try to convince you to chat her up again? Never.[/derrick] Words were still a bit under her breath as she turned to "look" his way, shoulders flinching as the big black stallion behind her kicked the door once more, the scowl deeply etching as head snapped around to half growl at the creature, fingers itching to pull the hidden glock from under her sweatshirt. As though pointing it would even register as a threat to the damn thing.
  14. Not so warm homecoming...

    There was that chuckle. That lyrical sound that had caught her attention the first time they had wandered the cemetery. Brow quirked upward musing that she wouldn’t hold his dentures as she noticed the seat beneath her was warming up. It was a bit ostentatious but at the moment, with the bones currently chilled, she wasn’t complaining. [josef]Where's the fun in that? I'll hold my dentures, you help me piss.[/josef] The rare rumble in her chest came as chuckle fought to escape, head shaking slightly. [derrick]…. you owe me a helluva lot more than a warm ride and a trip to some old people's shmooz club before I am doing that for you Boudreaux. [/derrick] Smirk remained on her lips as she pushed cold fingers towards his vents again. Nod was faint as he seemed to accept her apology for him getting ditched by Bakkhos while she was gone. The faint sound of the jazz on the radio drew an unconscious soft hum in her chest, the sound like dark rich rum as it resonated. [josef] You said to only deal with you anyways, someone showed up saying they were there for you, someone woulda’ died. Glad you didn’t. Know your boss is big’n all. But… my flavor is a bit dangerous. Wouldn’t have been pretty. [/josef] Quirk of her lips lifted again, nod betraying she actually got the concept. Truth was, she probably would have been the same. If the revelation of the Order surprised her, she didn’t show it, silently listening as he seemed to feel the urge to relieve himself of secrets. It was odd, but they both seemed at ease despite barely knowing each other. Brow quirked as his words set in, faint tick upward on her lips. [derrick]….radioactive huh?.... somehow that explains a lot. [/derrick] Quiet words were playful without any harmful bite as her head rested back on the chair, enjoying the warmth that was finally enveloping her in its entirety. It was a disappointment when they pulled in and he turned off the engine, evidenced by a very soft unconscious sigh. [josef] Don’t embarrass me cher, upper crust don’t like their dentures rattled. Wanna meet my girl?[/josef] [derrick]…upper crust tend to have too many sticks up their asses.[/derrick] She said it with a soft chuckle even as she opened the door and slid out of the car. The moment she breathed the afternoon air in however she was drawn up short. Animal scent. Strong animal scent. It reminded her of…. of….. shit… of the casino! Horses. Inwardly she groaned. Animals were not her thing. Caesar was an absolute anomaly that chose her rather than the other way around. She had never been around animals growing up and even with her enhanced mapping she couldn’t tell the differences in a lot of their shapes to determine at a distance what the creature was. [derrick]….. and you better tell her she has to have the bottom.[/derrick] He wasn’t the only one with a bit of surly humor. Hot breath curled as she pushed hands into the pockets of her zip up and followed behind him. Nostrils made a soft huff as they approached the counter. The woman's perfume was on too strong for the sensitive senses that were already being assaulted by equine, not to mention the moment he started to "shmooz" the woman's pheromone levels peaked. Gross. She listened to the "friendly" chit chat with nary a soft muscle in her features, long tale of mahogany swinging as she glanced behind her to allow her senses to rest, drinking in the fresher air of the outside winter winds. There was a layer of sugar over the conversation that she really had no desire to be a part of. Patiently she waited as he finally said his good day. She waited until they were out of earshot of the woman having her wet dream. [derrick]….far too much honey in that old milk.[/derrick]
  15. Not so warm homecoming...

    [josef]You're worth talking to.[/josef] There was an edge of surly humor in his words and yet she still found herself surprised by the sentiment. She had never been much of a talker, she was known for being the "strong silent type" by Bakkhos. Go home. Get some sleep. Get in the car. Mend a bridge? She could always say she was mending the bridge Bakkhos themselves had busted by not reaching out to their new ammunitions dealer. Ya… that was what she was doing. Not being reckless and wanting to get the fuck out for a bit without a chaperone… of course not. Long fingers hesitated before finally reaching down the side of the door to pop it open as he noted the longer she waited the less amused he would be. It was her turn to smirk. He was definitely in a surly mood. [josef]Got a honey that wont wait to be fed.[/josef] If he was expecting some form of indignation he was going to be sorely disappointed. She worked for and lived within a family full of Italian and Sicilian machismos. Getting their "honey" on was half their existence. She lived around more tail grabbing than a baby in a box of fluffy kittens. She had always been fairly indifferent to it since that sort of sexual forwardness was never turned on her, at least not overtly. In her world she had too much "balls" for the men to be comfortable flirting with. [derrick]… best not leave your honey lying out too long…. just collects yeast.[/derrick] Snort was soft as she finally pulled the door open as he tossed a "last chance" at her. Duffle was dumped on the floor of the passenger seat as she huffed at him. [derrick]….damn impatient for an old lady that collects antiques.[/derrick] Jab came with an uptick of her lips as she dropped into the seat, long limbs folding into the car to tuck on top of the duffle as the door was yanked closed. Shiver ran up her spine as she let the beginning embers of warm air blasting out of his ducts touch the slightly blued flesh. She had been colder than she had realized. [derrick]…for the record… I refuse to hold your dentures while you take a piss.[/derrick] Hands stretched out to the vents to warm heavily battle-marked digits, oblivious that the back of her left was facing him now, the ebony thorns of tribal "tattoo" curving up the back of it to lick at the base of her fingers. She was quiet as the warmth began to finally penetrate her skin. Breath pulled deep before releasing queitly. [derrick].. am sorry nitwits didn’t keep up business with you while I was gone. First trip was planned but the second one wasn’t, hadn't meant to be gone that long.[/derrick] Hand slid into her front jean pocket, pushing the button on the side of the phone to turn the thing off. Supposedly they didn’t have her GPS'd.. but she trusted Gaspari about as far as she could throw him when it came to something like that.