Not really; I just wanted to bug Gambler.
Alone on a windswept balcony, Peter Grayl stood vigilant. Time had not been kind to him. His skin was wrinkled and stretched, so much so that the vibrant eyes he had during his youth had grown pale and grey. Partially covered by folds of aging skin, Peter's eyes were flat and lifeless. And the dirty cloak draped over his bony frame left him seeming a corpse in a shroud. Oh he was great once, among the finest monster hunters House Grayl had ever produced. And in his old age, he became the de facto trainer and mentor of all prospective monster hunters in House Grayl. A position he once held with pride.. a position he'd been forced to relinquish. He'd grown too old and frail. He could barely see, and his hands hardly moved without shaking.
Still, he stood on the balcony, gazing upon the empty courtyard just as he would years ago when watching his trainees spar with one another. "Ah, Peter, I was told I'd fine you here", a silky voice echoed from behind the balcony doors. And as they swung open, out walked Geoff Grayl, one of House Grayl's consummate scholars on the arcane and supernatural. And whereas Peter was hunched and shrunken with age, Geoff was tall and slender, his back always straight, and his long coat sleek and upscale. "A moment of your time?", Geoff asked, stopping by a mute Peter's right. "I'll assume your silence is a resounding 'yes'", he taunted, his smile thin and serpentine. "I wish to speak with you about one of the last Grayls you trained. Mason", Geoff paused, his emerald eyes wearing his distaste and disgust for Mason the Ghoul Ripper.
"What are you doing here again?", Peter lightly mocked, aloof and never once meeting Geoff's eyes with his own. "Cheeky", Geoff chuckled, sauntering about the balcony, "But you only delay the inevitable, Peter. You know why I've come", Geoff insisted. "Perhaps young man, I do not", Peter dismissed, stroking his long grey beard as he kept his gaze on the courtyard. "Then I shall enlighten you, old man", Geoff laughed, his suave features wearing a measure of amusement at their back and forth. "Mason Grayl is your greatest mistake. The moment you were made aware of his sullied blood you should have tossed him to the man-wolves and the other abominations like him", Geoff hissed in disgust. "He is not a true a Grayl. He is an it. Monster blood, no matter how diluted, still runs in his veins. He-".
"And?", Peter interrupted, "What am I to do, young man? Talk my past self out of training little Mason? How do you suppose I do that?", he taunted, his weathered face offering no indication as to what his actual thoughts were. Geoff's mouth tightened, and from the corner of his eye, Peter could see the young scholar's face redden. Forcing himself to laugh and failing to shroud his rising temper, Geoff cupped his hands behind his back, "They told me you were manner-less. But perhaps you can still see reason", Geoff paused. "House Grayl can no longer afford to accommodate these people, they are an abhorrence to our legacy-", Geoff insisted, only for Peter to interrupt him once more, "A legacy built on our ancestors' breeding and experimenting with monsters?".
"DON'T", Geoff lashed out. "Or?", Peter poked, indifferent to the scholar's fury. Pinching the bridge of his nose, Geoff grinned, "You have three days to seek counsel with the elite of House Grayl to whom you will admit your mistake in training these abominations and make a formal call for House Grayl to execute Mason, to purge this impurity from our castle. To purge all of them! Eventually", he paused, "And if you refuse... well, we'll just have to see won't we?", Geoff threatened. "I suppose we will", Peter challenged with little concern for himself. He was too old to fear much of anything anymore, least of all death.
And he was old enough to see that Geoff's call for a homicidal blood purge had little to do with honoring their "legacy" and more to do with acquiring personal power. By playing upon House Grayl's supremacist ideals, Geoff could forge a platform for himself, create a support structure of passionate pure blood believers who'd have him as their leader for purging the Grayl family of the Impure.
Very slowly and with peculiar physical articulation, the Clockwork Phantom cinematically slipped into a Lord Raffles mahogany Toscano arm-chair, and pompously folded his legs. To an observant eye, such as Samuel's, Jacob's aristocratic copycat of their guest's own display of high-born nonchalance was a trait his brother had premiered as a child, and further demonstrated while visiting him in the cathedral with his sacrilegious replication of Christ on the cross.
That was a sign of respect, this....this was an openly aggro taunt. Thus far, Jacob had found the would be sale's men slightly disrespectful, if for no other reason then his portrayal of confidence and self-assurance. But his silver tongue and promise of an enticing artifact remained a heavy anchor in the Clockwork Phantom's mercurial interests.
His gloved fingers dexterously drummed together like the elongated legs of a black widow. His uniquely crafted mask hid the sadomasochistic scars and body-modifications, such as his surgically removed eye-lids and lips. 'The better to see you with my dear. The better to smell you with, my dear.....'
Twisting his neck with unbelievable contortion the Viper of the Victorian Garden focused on his brother. Inquisitively so. Then back towards the dapper gentlemen, and around his general area searching for an sign that the object in question had even been brought.
@jacob_grayl: @dorian_gray_: Samuel and Jacob had led the supernatural gentleman, known as Dorian Gray into a secluded area of the Castle. Although Jacob and somewhat Samuel were okay with allowing a monster on to their premises the pure Grayls may not be so kind to an outsider such as their usual targets. So, they wandered to a more discreet area away from the others and away from any other valuable artifacts the Grayls had come into possession of. Jacob took his usual chair in the area, a Lord Raffles mahogany Toscano arm-chair while his brother Samuel much preferred to stand. Although Samuel and Jacob had come to an agreement on hearing the Monster out, he still held his sword's grip while it rested inside its scabbard. Jacob's visual mocking of their guest was somewhat comical to Samuel, it was true the manner at which their
uninvited guest was handling himself in front of them was disrespectful, to say the least. He had shown up unannounced, then when coming face to face with the known monster hunters asked to be shown around. He made light of Samuel wanting to know of his intentions of being here, and although they allowed his entrance to the castle he remained to be obnoxious.
If Jacob didn't care about the portrait, this would have been dealt with immediately, but the two of them had invited and spoke with Dorian too far, to simply turn him away without hearing more about this deal. So, as Samuel received the physical cue from Jacob to continue the conversation with Mr. Gray, he did just as he was told to. "Ah, so you already had the piece appraised? How does one appraise the portrait of an Immortal's Soul, Dorian? Who is this appraiser you speak of and what gives him the right to judge how much a soul, an immortal's soul at that, is worth?" The Youngest Grayl Brother looked at his brother for a moment to see if he had continued the conversation as needed. Jacob's attention seem somewhat divided, his eyes wandered around Dorian and then around the area they were at, so Samuel continued allowing his brother to find whatever he was looking for. "And why would someone such as yourself Dorian choose to part from such a unique item? You claim it to be quite valuable, so why distant it from yourself?" Samuel pulled out his blade, not for usage, but for Dorian's attention. The simple unsheathing of his weapon, no matter if it was threatening or non-threatening, could not go unnoticed by their guest, in fact, the mere display of action would force his eyes to be drawn to it. "Dorian, I believe you understand exactly what it is we do. This blade, I hold in my hand allows me to defend myself when needed, and for that very reason, I find this very blade very valuable. So valuable, that I keep it on my body, in case, I need to use it. I don't see myself parting ways with it, for a simple deal. To me that is value. That determines what it's worth." The Sermon Slayer sheathed his sword. Another action that would draw Dorian's attention to allow him to ease back into comfort. Samuel had finally realized what exactly his brother had been trying to find. The focus on carrying the conversation and reading the both of them hadn't given him the time to determine whether the portrait the whole conversation was about was even on Mr. Gray.
"For that very reason, Dorian, although you had some appraiser we do not know of, look at it. We as the possible acquirers of the Portrait must take a look at it. Did you bring the piece with you, so that we could do that?"
The first Grayl was watching him. His eyes burned into Dorian like hot pokers. It was impossible to tell with that mask of his, but it was like he never blinked, never reduced the intensity of his stare. He was laughing at Dorian, he just knew it. Laughing at the foolish man, the rabbit who had willingly approached the den of the boa constrictor.
Dorian was beginning to have second thoughts. The way the two Grayls looked at him, the way they saw right through him. They knew full well that beneath his polished veneer he was rotten to the core. He hadn’t noticed if they had left the castle door open or not, but he guessed not. He was trapped in here with them and he had a lot of explaining to do.
"Ah, so you already had the piece appraised? How does one appraise the portrait of an Immortal's Soul, Dorian? Who is this appraiser you speak of and what gives him the right to judge how much a soul, an immortal's soul at that, is worth?"
Dorian cursed himself again. He knew he shouldn’t have brought up the appraiser, he just knew it. “Er, well…” He had actually had the portrait appraised by a very trusted colleague, but he wasn’t so foolish as to give up the name. “I know a fellow who specializes in such things. Monkeys paws, life serums, odds and ends that you won’t find unless you look very hard for them.” He shifted his feet, glanced down at his shoes which were a tiny bit dusty from the road.
“And why would someone such as yourself Dorian choose to part from such a unique item? You claim it to be quite valuable, so why distant it from yourself?”
Dorian was going to say ‘Because I’m tired of it and I want something new,’ but he saw the sword instead. Steel (or was it steel? Might it be something Dorian should actually fear?) glistened in the soft light. Dorian tugged at his collar nervously. What had brought him here? It was almost if dark gods had clouded his mind, strung him along like a dog with a piece of meat right out of reach. His objective was nearly forgotten. He wasn’t just going to wander around and antagonize his ‘hosts,’ he was here for something more. But in that moment of bared steel, he was afraid.
“Dorian, I believe you understand exactly what it is we do. This blade, I hold in my hand allows me to defend myself when needed, and for that very reason, I find this very blade very valuable. So valuable, that I keep it on my body, in case, I need to use it. I don't see myself parting ways with it, for a simple deal. To me that is value. That determines what it's worth."
He sheathed his sword, which did not comfort Dorian at all. Rabbits and boa constrictorsafter all. He might have to act soon. Should he strike first? Or wait to see if that cold steel could make him bleed? He didn’t want to find out. Were there any mirrors present? He couldn’t tell, couldn’t let them see he was looking. He bit his lip nervously.
“For that very reason, Dorian, although you had some appraiser we do not know of, look at it. We as the possible acquirers of the Portrait must take a look at it. Did you bring the piece with you, so that we could do that?”
Dorian tried to pull himself together. “Of course not,” he scoffed. “I had no guarantee that you wouldn’t simply try to take it from me. In addition to which it’s rather large, and cumbersome to carry.” His words (which would have been true if he had had any intention of turning over the portrait, but were in this setting brazen lies) sounded hollow to his ears. “I thought that if we got this far we could work something out.”
Dorian felt himself slowly backed into a corner, and cornered animals are the most dangerous.
(Sorry for taking so long.)
Dorian Gray had entered the castle and communicated with the famous monster hunters with a daring attitude. It seemed to Samuel that the man had an uncaring way about the way he interacted with people. This coming from the way Samuel felt a bit disrespected as the way he communicated with Grayls. How he spoke freely to them as if they were not the ones hunting down the very things like Dorian Gray. He spoke as if he had no understanding of what it was like for monster hunters like Grayl to invite them into their family castle, even without invitation, so with no understanding or no caring for the situation the supernatural gentleman found himself in, he somewhat held himself poorly in the eyes of the Impure One known as Samuel Grayl.
That's how he held himself in the beginning of their conversation, up until focus shifted from their main conversation to Samuel's blade. Once the Sermon Slayer made the arrogant gent aware of his weapon, Dorian's body language slightly changed. To most it was undetectable but to Samuel, it was like an old friend. He had seen something like it many many times before, an overconfident monster being humbled by the sense of danger. The reasons some beast do the things they do is because they believe can do the things they do untested. As if the feeling of invulnerability is second nature to them or they are taught false beliefs of being untouchable. They carry the very same self-assurance of themselves as the man before Samuel Grayl at this moment.
But Death is humbling, even the mightiest of monsters and warriors kneel to it. Time and time again the young Grayl had seen as "untouchable" "invulnerable" monsters were humbled when they laid bloody at the end of his blade. So, as he saw this small glimpse of humility in Dorian Gray when the once egotistical gentleman bit his lip, Samuel found it if anything amusing.
If the situation were any different the monster hunter would probably toy with his prey, but right here and now Dorian was not his prey. He was their guest, no matter how badly he was handling himself in their home. The situation wasn't a hunter with a target, it was a supernatural being with a proposition. So, Samuel wiped his mind clean of the thoughts of Dorian's small behavior change and instead refocused on the portrait.
"Very Well Dorian, seeing as you came here without the very portrait we speak of and seeing as we can't further pursue a deal without the product before us, no matter how many unknown respectable appraisers speak kindly of the piece. I see no further reason to continue this present conversation." Samuel looked over at his brother Jacob, knowing full well, that they did not come this far to simply let the piece slip out of their hands.
"Instead, I have a proposition of my own. Since you seem to want to part with the potentially valuable portrait and you have had our interest this far to the point where we've welcomed you, an uninvited guest into our home. I say we solve the problems we face today. What if you were to bring the portrait you speak of to a mutual location, to assure you that we mean no harm and for you to show us the portrait so that we can evaluate it, then after all that we can come to a deal." Samuel Grayl believed that this convinced Dorian that they were interested enough in the piece to make a deal, but not enough to be made fools of. Samuel would not stand for another meeting with a monster and not receive anything for his time. He was not someone who enjoyed wasting time on pointless ventures when other more important issues could be dealt with.
Striding through the empty Graylskull courtyard, his dark blue coat fluttering with every gust of air, Mason had returned from a recent assignment, from a hunt that'd seen him scour the highlands of Scotland for a murderous vampire. Though as he neared the towering oak doors of the family castle, a sly voice sneered behind him, "Well well well, if it isn't the half-breed". Halting his steps and glancing over his shoulder to meet the thin smile of Geoff Grayl with the cold steel of his mask, Mason stood silent, holding his chin high as he turned round to face his contentious cousin. "I spoke to Peter earlier", Geoff grinned, his face as smug as ever as he stepped forward, "And oh we had quite the conversation about you. About the black sheep of House Grayl and-".
But alas, Geoff found himself interrupted, by the Black Sheep no less. "And you've lost my interest", the Ghoul Ripper cut off, impenetrable confidence behind every word, "While there is nothing more I'd rather hear than you blustering on until we're both gray and wrinkled, I literally have a thousand better things to do. So if you are done wasting my time, I have something more substantial to deal with". Turning away and walking towards the castle doors, Mason's ears again fell victim to Geoff's incessant taunting, "Oh Mason, will you ever stop running?", Geoff smirked, his eyes squinting. "Will your mouth?", the Ghoul Ripper retorted, pushing the castle's large oak doors open and hearing them creak over Geoff's protests. Though as the doors closed behind him, Mason's mask began to hum.
It's hum echoed low and steady, growing louder as he ventured deeper into the castle. There was a monster present. "Abhorrent", he thought in disgust, the thought of a monster sullying Graylskull halls with their presence was blasphemous. Was an attack or act infiltration underway? He couldn't know. Though as he darted through the castle's Victorian hallways, his gloved fingers coiling round the hilt of his silver sword to grip it tight, the Ghoul Ripper's muscle fibers twitched with a homicidal fury, he wondered, just what manner of creature had the gall to break into House Grayl's legendary fortress? Going where his mask's humming echoed louder, Mason entered the castle's more secluded areas and to his shock, his gaze fell upon his brothers, Samuel and Jacob - and a vampire.
"How - unexpected", Mason began, his dark and silky voice deepened and muffled by his mask. "Though I ought not to make judgments on that which I have no context", he continued, his strides slow and predatory, his presence and gravitas cold and heartless. "So I suppose I'll ask why my brothers have not yet cut down the monster in our halls", Mason paused, meeting both his brothers' gazes.
Oh joy! Things were finally getting back on track…or at least as on track as they could be, considering that Dorian had abandoned his secondary objective in favor of getting out of the castle alive and that he was still walking a tightrope of spider’s silk when it came to the ‘sharp swords and where they go’ front.
He had blamed dark gods for his predicament, but there was a much simpler solution to how he had ended up in this mess. A certain individual who possessed a certain very special substance of the presumably illegal variety had allowed Dorian some, and Dorian was not one to turn down a good time. The stuff made one feel like one was flying, and apparently gave one the common sense of a child.
"Very Well Dorian, seeing as you came here without the very portrait we speak of and seeing as we can't further pursue a deal without the product before us, no matter how many unknown respectable appraisers speak kindly of the piece. I see no further reason to continue this present conversation,” said the chattier of the Grayls. Dorian tensed. This could either be very good news or very bad. Dorian inhaled deeply, held his breath.
"Instead, I have a proposition of my own. Since you seem to want to part with the potentially valuable portrait and you have had our interest this far to the point where we've welcomed you, an uninvited guest into our home. I say we solve the problems we face today. What if you were to bring the portrait you speak of to a mutual location, to assure you that we mean no harm and for you to show us the portrait so that we can evaluate it, then after all that we can come to a deal,” said Grayl.
Now would be a good time for Dorian to be a bit deferent, to be gracious and take his leave on a good note. But this is Dorian Gray after all. That’s simply not his style. He snorted. “’Welcomed me as an uninvited guest.’ I’ve had greater hospitality from the undead, disgusting creatures. If you didn’t want me here you didn’t have to open the door.” He paused. “Regarding the Portrait though, that solution seems satisfact-”
His plan was essentially to get out of the castle and then book it out of town. He could lie low for a little while, or something. Surely something more pressing than searching for him would occupy the Grayls.
His plans abruptly changed when a third (presumably) Grayl burst in rather dramatically. His words made it very clear that he wanted his shiny shiny blade to reside somewhere within Dorian’s guts.
“Monster?” said Dorian. “I’m merely a gentleman with an artifact to sell, and I quite resent that accusation.” He knew as he said it that his words carried no weight.
He was a frog in a pot of boiling water, one that had been heated up so slowly he didn’t even notice until it was too late to get out.
“That being said,” continued Dorian. “If you lay so much as a finger on me, I will kill you.” There was no tremor in his voice, no nervous tics. His eyes were hard. He was deadly serious, and unless the Grayls somehow already knew about his abilities, Dorian thought he had a pretty decent chance against them if it came down to that. “Though I would hate to do that, being a guest in your home after all.” This was aimed at the newcomer who seemed a little happy with his sword. “I, however, will not further impinge upon your hospitality – I’d rather like to return home, and I can bring the Portrait to our meeting spot on the morrow.” He sincerely doubted it would be that easy, but it was worth a try.
Please feel free to make Dorian's life as difficult as possible
@mason_grayl: @dorian_gray_: Once again Dorian had disrespected the Grayls in their own home. Declaring that undead disgusting creatures had been more welcoming than the Brothers Grayl. Samuel's patience and choice to sit with Dorian on behalf of his brother were wearing thin. The constant uncaring attitude from Dorian was giving Samuel very little reason to not slice the abomination that stood before him. He looked over to Jacob, to let his older brother know that if Mr. Gray kept it all up, that his loyalty to his brother's interest would not save Dorian from being like any other monster that came before him. He looked back to Dorian to hear that Samuel's solution would work for the both of them, but before the Supernatural Gentleman could finish his sentence, the three of them were interrupted by another.
Mason Grayl, the final Grayl brother to complete the Impure Trinity. First words to come out of his mouth would be the exact same if Samuel had walked in on his brothers sitting down across from a monster in their own castle. Unexpected. Mason, luckily for Jacob's interest in the piece of art, decided to understand the situation rather than attack their possible business partner. Samuel made eye contact with the Black Sheep only to look over at Jacob as if to let Mason know that it was Jacob's interest that had initiated the unusual meeting. The Sermon Slayer wasn't passing blame to the Mask of Many, he was just shedding light on the situation, that Jacob was in fact interested in what Dorian had to say.
Samuel was even about to explain everything, "Mas--" but was interrupted by the arrogant guest. Once again being agitated by him. Dorian was quick to state that him being referred to as a monster was an insult to him. To Samuel, it was the truth. In the young Grayl's eyes, the thing before them wasn't a man, no he was, in fact, a monster, and just because Dorian didn't believe himself to be one, didn't mean he wasn't one. What Dorian said next was the tipping point for Samuel, he was through playing diplomacy for his brother. Dorian stated if that Mason laid a finger on him, the Gentleman would kill the Grayl Brother. The Portrait was now a distant memory for the Sermon Slayer, it no longer interested him. The fact that Dorian had been welcomed to their home and didn't understand common decency, didn't help his chance of surviving. Prey like Dorian should not instigate predators when they allow it to prolong their demise. Samuel had allowed Mr. Gray to see Grayls and their property, and choose to leave to tell the tale, unlike the monsters before him.
Despite this, Dorian had made mistake after mistake. He was not careful in the way he handled himself in their presence. Another example of a monster's perception of them being invulnerable or untouchable to the world. The action of pulling out the sword earlier hadn't taught Dorian anything, a shame, because the portrait of an immortal would've been an excellent piece to sit among the other trophies the Grayls had come into possession. Samuel looked over at Jacob one more time to notify his brother that his attempt for a cordial meeting was now over, that the "man" that stood before them was no longer welcomed in their estate. Samuel gave Mason the go ahead, to do as he pleased, meaning he would not interrupt if his brother chose to continue or to end the discussion here and now. Because of Dorian's out of turn speaking, he didn't even try to explain the situation thoroughly to possibly save Dorian. He was now free game, Samuel's possible protection of the Monster from Mason was out of the question.
By now Jacob had altered his seated position to one of more...mercurial nonchalance. Gingerly swaying his folded legs over the decorative arm rest as unexpected arrivals, postural defensive mechanisms, and the theatricality of the impressive Dorian Grey all contested in a brilliant storm of entertainment. From behind his expressionless veil the Clockwork Phantom quietly digested every piece of nuanced dialog, every subtle hint held within a look or glance while surrendering little of his own. To his brothers, the guest was a monster. The thing in the night. Their sworn enemies.
However, like he had done only moments earlier while attempting to understand the religious dichotomy the youngest Grayl had ardently adopted, Jacob had opted to delve deeper into their guest's sorted associations. To look beyond preconceived notions and traditions. This man, this, Dorian Grey; while anything but normal was never the less something beyond the boring nightmares that plagued this world. And his fearless displays and arrogance had captivated the enigmatic Grayl. Yet as one brother entered and the other silently declared his intentions, Jacob slowly twisted his neck and head to look back upon Samuel mutely conveying his own intentions. Intentions that would not see their guest harmed.
With slow precision the odd Grayl acrobatically propelled himself out of his chair using it as a subtle launchpad to get back to his feet. Like a spider his legs and body contorted in a manner unobtainable by a normal man which in turn allowed him to cover a substantial distance in but one move.
Again using a physical emote to broadcast his message, Jacob made sure he had captured Dorian's attention before nodding over his left shoulder towards the entrance or in Dorian's case, the exit. Suggesting.....demanding, Dorian see himself out or see himself slayed. Maybe the assured aristocrat really could fulfill the boast he had made and kill the Grayl trinity himself, but Jacob doubted it. More then likely his brother's would cut him down. Repeatedly in fact if need be.
However Jacob had come to see a distorted reflection of himself within Dorian. More then a man but not a man. Parallels had been mentally drawn causing the introspective introvert to reconsider a great many things. To examine the utter hypocrisy which served as the Grayl's fundamental guiding beacon. "What makes a man a monster? Blood? Linage? Deeds?" he thought. Unlatching the buckles to his mask it slid off and fell to the ground before his feet revealing what most would consider to be a monstrous sight. "Am I.....a monster?" his thoughts snaked even deeper. Turning to face the nearest of many mirrors he began to trace along the missing edges of his face. Pieces he had masochistically removed as penitence, or perhaps pleasure...nobody knew for sure.
He wondered what deed or act, what line there would be that he could cross in which his brother's would take action against one of their own. Would his looks simply be enough? Would his open defiance and acceptance of a creature into their sacred home be enough to warrant his death in the eyes of his brothers?
The manner in which he spoke, the flair in his stride - predatory. Striding in and out of surrounding shadows, his steel mask hiding all but his piercing gaze, the Ghoul Ripper's eyes never left Dorian. To some he was an aristocrat, a collector of fine and artistic works. But to Mason? To a Grayl who gave serious credence to his family's racist ideals and their belief in the pure blood supremacy of man? Dorian was a monster. A monster who masqueraded in human flesh yet wore skin so pale it reacted negatively to the sun, hissing at the kiss of sunlight. And so as he strode all about the room, one hidden from the rest of the castle, Mason's stare never broke from Dorian, his eyes like dark tunnels for the vampire to lose himself and go mad in.
Then, oh then came Dorian's threat, echoed with a steely self-assurance that'd leave any lesser man trembling in his boots. But to it, the Ghoul Ripper said nothing. Not yet. Instead, he stopped his stride, no longer stalking his prey like a panther considering it's next meal. Facing him, his arms folded regally behind his back, Mason was smug, keeping his chin high and his gaze condescending. The tension among them, among his brothers and their polarizing guest, was palpable. It thickened in the air with each second until finally, Mason's deep and cool voice cut through the tension like a hot knife through butter. "Yes I suppose you would regret doing so", his composure and poise never abandoning him, "Just as I regret allowing a monster into my family home", Mason paused, finally glancing at both his brothers, first at Samuel who'd greenlit his coming attack on Dorian, and then at Jacob who seemed all too at ease.
"However", the Ghoul Ripper paused once more, "The difference between you and I is that I'll live long enough to regret it", he asserted, not haughtily, but with a disturbing indifference and cold matter-of-fact tone that was true to Mason's icy confidence. Calmly reaching over his shoulder for the steam-powered shotgun that hung from his back, Mason continued, "I will honor your request to go home and send you there. The home from which all undead creatures escape", he paused, paying no mind to Jacob's gesture for Dorian to leave, "Death". Taking aim and firing at Dorian, 'BLAM!', Mason was a quick shot, almost supernaturally so, much quicker than any ordinary human. But then, there wasn't anything truly ordinary about him. From his abilities to even the very weapon he used against Dorian. It was far from ordinary.
It's bullets wore aetheric runes which drew upon the power of what some thinkers believed to be the medium through which light permeated; luminiferous aether. And it was the medium through which light seeped into the shotgun's bullets and becoming one with it's luminiferous aether, all in a bid to - should the bullets find their target - erupt in a burst of light that'd burn the flesh of the undead, specifically vampires. The Ghoul Ripper had aimed for Dorian's torso, for his bullets to puncture the vampire's heart and lungs. But the confidence showcased by his brothers' vampiric guest was a possible indicator of one thing; Dorian would most likely survive and retaliate. So as his shotgun hissed it's steam into the air and was slow to reload, Mason plucked the silver sword hanging from his hip from it's scabbard and stood ready.
Dorian hadn’t been so close to death since the sailor decided to take revenge (a rather long story which boiled down to Dorian drove a young woman to suicide and her brother got word of it, and decided to uphold his family’s honor).” He had felt the knife on his cheek then and cried pitiful tears. Back then when he was still semi-mortal, he was afraid. Now, he cried no tears. He kept up his nonchalant façade, examining his fingernails briefly before turning his attention back to the Grayls as if he had forgotten they were there. The effect would have been better if he hadn’t been in their house, at the center of attention, but he honestly didn’t have any better ideas. When he was stressed he simply became more the dandy.
One of the Grayls, the quiet one, seemed to be on Dorian’s wavelength. He nodded to the door in a very clear gesture of get out…or else. Dorian usually tried to avoid ‘or else’s. For a moment his (being Dorian’s) mask slipped and he smiled at the Grayl out of sheer relief. At this point, Dorian would very much have liked to sprint to the door, run until he could run no more, and lock himself somewhere safe and sound for when night fell. Instead he calmly, almost serenely, strolled towards the door.
The Grayls weren’t done with him yet. The third Grayl’s fairly blazed with rage, the kind of rage found in perfect stillness. Death without rippling the pond. "Yes I suppose you would regret doing so", said the Grayl (still hung up on Dorian’s death threat? It was merely spur of the moment; it shouldn’t be taken too seriously. Not that Dorian hadn’t meant every word), "Just as I regret allowing a monster into my family home"
Dorian debated the merits of explaining that he wasn’t a monster, again, but the Grayl wasn’t done yet. "However, the difference between you and I is that I'll live long enough to regret it.” He was reaching for something. Dorian glanced towards the door, considered breaking into a sprint, but through his misplaced sense of dignity didn’t budge. "I will honor your request to go home and send you there. The home from which all undead creatures escape-” Dorian almost rolled his eyes. He was scared out of his wits, but that didn’t matter. This was just too much. Today had started with the very simple quest of a) having a bit of a laugh and b) stealing something – anything – from Castle Graylskull just to see if he could and for a story to tell, and now he was about to be subjected to something that was almost certainly nasty. “Death.”
There was a deafening noise, concentrated thunder, and Dorian felt intense pain in his chest. The light was blinding, each bullet a spoke from Apollo’s chariot. The thing is, Dorian was not a vampire. The light merely hurt his eyes. The bullets hurt too, but after a moment or two they popped out of his fully healed chest, taking with them a tiny bit of blood and the smell of paint and gunpowder. Dorian stood up. He had two choices now. He could take a mad dash for it, but the Grayls were almost certainly faster. He’d have to fight. He turned to the Grayl who had shot him. “I quite liked this shirt, you know.” He brushed dust off himself. This was very much a taunt. Dorian had no sort of long-range attack. He did have two tricks up his (slightly tattered) sleeve. He’d try the first of them now. He could see the Grayl preparing to use his sword. Dorian was going to do something clumsy, charge at him, so that he was sure to be hit if the Grayl attacked. Then he would use his ability.
Dorian could drain lifeforce, giving it back to his Portrait and supplementing his youth. He could drain a fully-grown man in about twenty seconds with direct skin-to-skin contact. He could drain through clothing in about two minutes. Dorian was going to use the Grayl’s blade as a conduit (this would still work if it was lodged in his innards) and see what he could do. He doubted it would be very fast – a few seconds would likely drain a few days, months, maybe a handful of years, but not enough to be fatal or even particularly crippling. Maybe enough to give the Grayl a scare, and set Dorian up for the second part of his plan.
He did so wish they had simply let him leave.
@jacob_grayl: @mason_grayl: @dorian_gray_: Jacob rose from his chair and offered the Monster Save Haven from his possible death on the arrival of Mason. MAson, on the other hand, seemed unwilling to allow the Monster before them to freely roam away from the Castle Graylskull. Mason like Samuel hadn't taken Dorian's death threat lightly, but while Samuel had simply given up protecting their possible business partner, Mason chose to return Dorian's death threat. In that split second where one Brother chose to align himself with a monster's safe haven and the other chose to follow through with the Grayl belief system that every monster no matter how well groomed and how human they look, is still a thing that plagues mankind, Samuel thought of what Cain said to God, when he asked about Abel. "Am I my brother's keeper?"
A small line had been drawn in the sand, one that Samuel knew would come eventually. Mason and Jacob's belief systems were different, where as Mason was more hostile towards the creatures, Jacob seemed more open to finding alliance with them if it meant something valuable in return. Samuel knew that one day their beliefs would come head to head with one another, but he never knew which side of the line he would stand. Was it his duty to protect his brother from his own brother? If he chose either side, he would be against the other, so he chose neither. He would not strike the Supernatural Gentleman unless Jacob joined in on the assault. He was not willing to attack one of his older brothers for the safety of an abomination or follow through with the Grayl belief system if it meant harming his brother in the process. So, when Mason fired his shotgun before Mr. Gray could excuse himself, Samuel stepped away from the action. He was at a safe distance to watch as the action unfolded, but to not be caught in the cross fire. He held his sword tightly ready to intervene to save one of his brothers if necessary.
It all happened so, fast. Mason's ability to reach over his shoulder fire the steam-powered shot gun at his target. The bullet pierced and what followed was a blinding light if you looked right at it, but their uninvited guest did not go down, he didn't even physically acknowledge the bullets until they fell out of his chest as a by product of what Samuel could only seem as some kind of physical regeneration. Dorian's self-confidence didn't even waiver through what had just transpired, he responded to MAson with the same bravado that he had expressed when dealing with Samuel, "I quite liked this shirt, you know.". "What are you, Dorian Gray?" Samuel thought back to the description of the painting, "Are you the so called immortal who's soul is trapped in that portrait you tried so hard to get rid of?"
Samuel's eyes shifted to Jacob, looking at him with an expression of, "What will you do brother?" Would his brother, an Impure One just like Samuel and Mason, be persuaded to align himself with the same atrocities that course through their blood? Would he align himself with the beasts that Pure Grayls condemned the Brothers Grayl of being? Or would he do as the Grayls were born and raised to do? To rid this Earth of these Monsters, ONE BY ONE!
Please Log In to post.
Log in to comment