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March 10th, 2022 7:00 p.m. Tom was furious. He was still chasing down the leads on these poisonings with no luck so far. He had the smallest of leads that appeared to not be headed toward a dead end...but details were scarce. He had been led to a warehouse where he had allowed himself a fool's hope of finding a cache of tainted booze. Instead, he came across a poker game he was interrupting. Five men sat around the table. Tom made a lot of noise as he entered. He wanted the focus on him, so that Roderick would go unnoticed. He didn't roll up on unsuspecting people like Strollo or any others would with a goon-squad behind him. He abhorred unnecessary casualties. The plan was simple, Roderick would adjust the moods of the goons encountered in a way that made them compliant. Tom would get whatever information he could from them, and leave peacefully. Somehow he knew...this time would be different. The moon was near...within a week. This could go poorly. The men, surprised, stood up and drew guns on Tom. The air nearly vibrated visibly around Tom, as his fury was unchecked. This was bad. He had been getting worse about this. His outlets haven't been doing their job anymore, and Roderick couldn't split his attention between helping Tom manage his moods and manipulating the others at the same time. Roderick, clever as ever, had dialed up the fear response in the others to exaggerate Tom's effect on them. Four of the men fled without ever looking back. Damn. One remained, however. "You have 5 seconds to speak, or you will lose the ability to." This person was clearly immune, or at least resistant to Roderick's effects. The man, average in almost every measurable quality, stared Tom up and down as if he were disgusted...offended. Not scared. Not even shocked. Offended. This was puzzling to Tom. Then he caught the man's scent. Like Mythos, Toby, and...Eris. He had found a vampire. With a smirk of what can only be called arrogance, the vampire lunged at Tom with preternatural speed and punched Tom square in the face. Tom was lifted off of his feet and slid several feet across the floor. The vampire, now clearly pleased with his handy-work, placed hands on his hips and smirked at Tom lying on the ground. "Leave." Tom wasn't talking to the man. He was talking to Roderick. Tom had was dropping all forms of control and civility. As much of the Beast that could come out without the full moon was being allowed to take the lead in this encounter. This blood-sucker had no idea what sort of mistake he had just made. He caught a whiff off Roderick's fading scent. He had gone. Good. Tom stood slowly to his feet, eyeing the man with studious eyes. He had not actually squared up against a vampire in any real sense yet. He was looking for the proverbial hamstring. The sun had just set...so no chance on using that. The vampire's confidence wavered slightly. He had clearly expected Tom to stay on the ground. He knew a fight was coming and wasn't sure how he felt about it. Nevertheless, he lunged at Tom with that amazing quickness again, but this time Tom was ready. A fierce uppercut found its way into the chin of the lunging vampire, sending him flying about as far as Tom was sent by the vampire's sucker punch. The difference was, Tom was in pursuit while he was still in the air. Leaping on to the prone vampire, Tom rained down fist after fist...elbow after elbow, unrelenting for what seemed like minutes, but it had likely been mere seconds. The vampire was dead under Tom's weight...no, just unconscious. The shallow rise and fall of the man's chest revealed that the thing still lived. Good. The sudden outburst of violence and release had served to clear Tom's head a bit. He likely had answers but was in no condition to give them currently. Small cracks in the pavement underneath the man's head revealed the force with which Tom had rained down blows on the vampire. Tom still itched to fight...but the vampire may as well be a heavy bag hanging in the gym...it didn't do much as an outlet anymore. Satyr had been a godsend for him to let out the rage and frustration that was always begging to boil out. It had been too long since he had been in the arena. Gaspari had said that he was requesting to be in the arena too often. It was getting worse. His rage was not as easily sated these days. It was becoming an increasing problem. Suddenly, Tom's clarity had revealed a new problem. "Well, great." Tom allowed a mutter out loud under his breath. What if this creature he just pummeled was Sheut? Did he just violate some sort of protocol he was still feeling his way around? He needed to call Eris. Keeping his eyes trained on the man on the floor, he dialed Eris's phone. When she picked it up, he simply said, "Whatever you are doing, drop it. Come to the warehouse a few miles south of your hangar. I'll text you the address. We have a problem." Before she could respond, he clicked the phone shut. He hoped she would take that as serious enough to not be offended at being given what sounded like an order. He didn't have time for formalities or feeling at this point. Things just got much worse. He swept his vision across his surroundings quickly to see if he could catch any smell or sight that posed further harm. There were no other people nearby that he could detect, but something did catch is eye. An emergency fire-axe. He didn't know how long the vampire would stay down. Eris had said that they don't heal as fast as he does...but how fast was it? He couldn't take any chances of him waking up and running away. He strode over and broke the glass with his fists to grab the axe. Tom barely noticed the blood dripping around his hand. Those cuts would heal before Eris even got there. The moon was next week. Everything 'wolfy' about him was heightened now. What a terrible time for someone to pick a fight with him. Better than next week, he supposed. Striding over to the unconscious man, he noted that some healing had begun. It was certainly not as fast, but some of the swelling and bruises were starting to fade. Tom punted the man's face one last time to ensure his unconsciousness. He wasn't in the mood to hear the screaming for this next part. He raised the axe high and with two quick strokes, lopped off both of the vampire's legs just below the knee. He could not risk this man running away, after all.
February 15th Late Evening Eris' Compound Being summoned to a meeting in Glamis was positively something she hated. It was dangerous to fly into the North at this time of year, networks had not been completely restructured yet. There were a few places she could land in the event of mechanical failure, but not many that were equipped to help her with what she needed to get the plane back into the air. The meeting was as expected. Demands. Irritating assholes. Arrogance. People that didn't know what the fuck they were talking about. Wants and needs that couldn't necessarily be delivered with the resources she had. Some sort of idiotic threat, crawling through New York. She'd gotten a whiff of it over the last year or so, but it had been quiet lately. Why was Sheut concerned? Because if bad guys gobbled up the magic slingers, they might annoy the Sheut Nation. Humans and their magic. Idiots. Just find a magus to screw and get the fascination out of their system. She couldn't get out of Glamis fast enough. Flight had been quiet, weather somewhat amiable. As the lights of New York came back into view, she couldn't help but really want to be home. Away from those that had no understanding or relatively little fucking clue of what the rest of the world was going through. Their only want was to make sure that their position reigned supreme, and to be assholes; with the exception of her adopted brother. Even he had his moments when she wanted to smack him on the back in the head. If she could reach, that is. Damn moose. The tiny vampire reached forward, clicking several small levers as she adjusted the headset and spoke to her ground crew. "Flash", said quietly the plane turning gracefully in the air. The runway near the coast lit up once, its chasing lights on the ground unseen unless from above. All she needed was the position to land, her eyesight could do the rest. Touchdown would be slightly dicey, winter flights were always a risk. Her crew kept the runway pristine. Always. The elegant Cessna touched down in almost complete darkness, immense power vibrating through the beast as she reversed engines to slow it to a crawl and taxi. "Gold window shields worked great Mouse," words were quiet over the radio. No response, there never was. The techie was always listening though.Turning over the plane to her crew, the petite form stepped down from the cockpit. She fucking hated winter, the black Louboutin mad heel boots she had on effective against the elements, but didn't bring her any closer to Ahanu's height. Black slacks were pristine, black Mackage Kay coat fluttering its fur collar at the bitter wind as she peered out of the hood up at her right hand. The woman's face wasn't pleased. It was never pleased when she had to tell the Viceroy bad news. Toby wasn't with her, which meant something had gone to shit. Her adopted protege kept the dangerous kind at bay. Namely, other vampires. There wasn't a vampire in the city she wasn't aware of, if they crossed her city without making themselves known she stabbed them in the face. They had the choice to reveal themselves, or die. Mostly die. Being infected tended to make baby vampires arrogant and ballsy. They tended to make her stabby and murdery. Heat rolled from above the doors in the hangar, closing as the plane was pulled in. She'd stepped to the side in the first floor office, pouring herself a drink. *npc* Toby is babysitting two rogues. "Fucking kill them already," answer was disinterested. "I just spent way too long listening to bullshit, rogues can go in a ditch." Yes, she'd promised not to do that anymore. It was her discretion. There were more popping up lately than the Executioner had time to deal with. Scratch that. She didn't feel like constantly flying out to shitstorm L.A. to pick him up. They were rogue, they were toast. Ahanu shook her head, the formidable woman pulling her hood down on her coat. The tiny vampire did the same. This was not going to be a good night. Coat slid from her arms and Ahanu took it to hang up. Winter white wool turtleneck sweater was smoothed, hair immaculate, narrowed eyes watching the woman as she picked up her cognac and followed Ahanu to the mechanical room. Toby was babysitting two middle aged wannabe commandos. Malnourished, beat to hell. They'd put up a fight. *npc* They were sniffing around the south fence. The irritated Viceroy reached and pulled Ahanu's sidearm from her leg holster, firing three concussive shots in succession and handed it back to her. Knee, knee, not knee. The asshole hissed at her, a high pitched squeal twisted into the animalistic growl. She put her hand out and Ahanu placed it in her hand again. One in the forehead. She approached the second, gun still in her hand. Swallow of cognac preceded the narrowing of the viper's immaculately lined eyes. "I'm hungry and tired. Open your fucking mouth and talk or I'll chain your ass to the east fence at seven am and burn your skin off. Then we'll bring you in, and do it again the next morning. I don't have time for your bullshit." The story between stammers and obstinate blubbering was one she didn't want to hear. Glamis had given her insight, and now this clusterfuck was in her back yard. Handing the gun back to Ahanu, she finished her drink. "Put him in the hole, call ARMA. I want to meet with someone tomorrow. Whoever is in this shit neck deep, lie if you have to in order to get them here. I'm going to sleep." With that she made her way to the upstairs luxury loft of the hangar. This was snowballing into giant headache. Of course, very few in ARMA knew of her kind, and she was content to just let the magic chasing idiots beat the crap out of each other as long as it didn't rock the stability of her area. Now rogue vamps were jumping into the mix? They needed to be ripped to shreds. That shit didn't happen on her watch. She had to clue in the new guard that there were worse things out there that could rain down hell other than humans fucking around with magic. Namely, her. Whatever "threat" was making factions piss their pants, hadn't locked horns with her yet.