CVnU - Los Angeles (Location Thread)

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Dos_Caras

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#3151  Edited By Dos_Caras

@dos_caras@last_guardian

After her long flight home, the Las Catrinas leader walked through one of the many headquarters of Tierra Mia that were hidden throughout the city of Angels. As her shoes clicked along the tile flooring of the building she let out a relief sigh of finally being home. What was a couple of weeks in Mexico City felt like months, and while she did always enjoy spending time with the Zamora's, nothing beat home. This was her home for the last ten years after that... horrible accident that killed her family. It was Efrain, Dos Caras, that saved her and took her under his wing. He cared for her, provided for her, she never wanted for anything. Tierra Mia, was her family, and she looked up to Efrain Cortez as if he was her father.

"Senora, it's good to have you home." One of the Tierra Mia greeted Sarah as she gave a slight nod of the head.

"Gracias Vincent, it's good to be home. Where are the girls?" Her eyes shift around a bit, she told the other Las Catrina's she would be coming back today, it was unusual for none of them to be here when she got home.

"Oh, Dos Caras had them on a mission, they should be returning home right now. But... he told me as soon as you got home, to have you meet with him right away. He's in the back, waiting for you."

"Hm... ok then, I guess I'm off to speak with him." She was going to go talk to Efrain either way to tell him of her success, but if he was wanting her to meet with him right away... then something was going on. As she approached his door she paused for a moment before knocking on the wooden frame.

No Caption Provided

"Pasa." A deeper rigid voice spoke from the other side of the door as Sarah twisted the doorknob and gave it a gentle push. In the room was Dos Caras himself, sitting behind his redwood desk, typing away on his laptop. But as soon as she entered the room, his focus quickly shift to her as the disfigurement portion of his face, smiled at the sight of her as she stood across from him for a moment. "Ah, mija, please, sit." he motioned to the seat in front of his desk. Without thinking the young Catrina smiled back and sat down in the leather seat. "It's good to have you home. I assume the issues that Los Zamora's had is taken care of?" He turned his body away from his laptop, completely focusing on Sarah.

With a cheeky grin she nod her head. "Of course mi Rey. Los Zamora's are very happy with the services we provided. Oh and Marta specifically told me to tell you hello, and Elisa said to stay out of touble. Also..." she shift forward a bit in her seat as she reached for something in her back pocket, pulling the white envelope as she carefully placed it upon the desk before Dos Caras. "The payment in full, all accounted for."

His scarred hand reached for the envelope as he didn't even bother to count the money himself, which was out of the ordinary. Something was wrong. Sarah could... feel that something was wrong. It was one of her many special abilities, as annoying as they can be at times, they were more helpful when hunting down prey. "Efrain... what's going on? Vincent told me you wanted to meet with me as soon as I got home. Is everything ok?"

Dos Caras silently regarded the girl's flawless features, watching her every micro-expression with an educated gaze. Her lips pursed, her forehead wrinkled, her eyes narrowed. These were the telltale signs of concern, the same expressions that the Dualistic Don had seen plastered all over the young girl's face the day he met her, the day he had murdered her entire family in an act of righteous vengeance.

No Caption Provided

"Everything is..." he paused, turning the words over in his mouth before pressing on, "....great, princesa."

El Rey de la Tierra Mia stood up, smoothing out his uniquely customized suit before traversing the length of his desk to reach the massive windows overlooking the city he loved. "Well, there are a few issues, I suppose."

"In my absence, a few smaller gangs have sprouted up in East L.A. and begun dividing up some of my territories among themselves. Tus hermanas are taking care of that," he informed, hoping that the so-called 'Prophets' wouldn't be too hard of a test on his girls.

"And then there's the other thing, the one I need your help with." A lone finger came up to meet a small smudge near the center of the otherwise-flawless glass wall. He frowned, realizing that he'd have to dock the window washer's already meager pay.

"Over the past week, seven of our most secure safehouses have been ransacked, entire crews taken out and millions stolen from right under us. It's been surgical, mija, impressive. Like they know just how and when to hit us."

"Someone on the inside?" Sarah asked.

"Might be," Dos Caras conceded. He took pride in knowing that the bulk of his men were loyal, but he had to admit that the promise of wealth and power could turn even the most faithful follower into a dangerous enemy.

"I need you to find out the next location that's gonna get hit. Use your powers. I know you can do it, you've done it before. Once you have a read on the location, stake it out and perform a preemptive strike. Take em out, before they touch another dime of Tierra Mia's money. If you can, bring 'em back to me alive 'cause I'd like to know if they're working with anyone else."

Efrain Cortez turned, his "good side" facing Sarah as his "bad side" marred the window's reflective surface. "Can you do that for me, mija?" He asked, doing his best to smile, knowing that the question was less a request than an outright command.

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Bogeyman

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Pecoraro Residence

The irony scent of blood hung thick in the air. The atmosphere was repugnant, and blood splattered the walls from which expensive French Renaissance portraits had fallen. Tables had been turned over, chairs broken, mirrors shattered as bloodied shards of glass were scatted across the tiled floor. The dead bodies of armed gangsters littered a room where red velvet-covered sofas and chairs had been torn and punctured. And in the midst of the chaos, as though he was an agent of it, the Connoisseur stood, his dapper Alexander McQueen ensemble stained with the blood of the victims of his homicidal spree. Bullet holes had left his shirt punctured, yet as he strode forward, the gunshot wounds on his pale, tattooed flesh began to heal.

Blood dripped from the diamond grills on his teeth, fresh from ripping out the artery from a gangster's neck. Slowly, he strode forward, his right hand holding the 'Bona-Fide Stud', a heavily customized handgun with a purple-finished slide and gold-plated frame. Gold inlaid engravings beautified the sides of it's frame and slide with textured ivory grip slabs stylized with a rose. His blue eyes seemed paler and empty, his features wearing an expression of a man emotionally detached from the crime he was committing. He didn't move with the peacocking swagger and brash cockiness of the wealth-absorbed mob boss he'd built his reputation as. Instead, his every movement was predatory, his pores oozing a quality of dread, his unique appearance telling not of a man who fashioned his own image and style... but of a subhuman killer whose abnormal body imagery tugged the mind of spectating eyes between the valleys of uncertainty and fear and into the depths of creepiness.

The soles of his designer Italian shoes clattered along the tiles, casting an uneasy presence in the air, and a feeling of inevitability for his one surviving victim; Bronson 'Pretty Boy' Pecoraro. Aged like fine wine and blessed with chiseled features that left women swooning, Bronson Pecoraro was a rival mob boss, one intent on disrupting the Mad Kingpin's plans to seize control of Gothic City. Based in California, he was not difficult to find. And now the man who'd risen to the top of the criminal underworld was semi-conscious in a corner, his back against the wall, his features bruised and bloodied, and his eyes swollen shut. "C-Con... we.. we *groan*.. we can work this out. You don't gotta pull the trigger man.. lemme help you out.. lemme-", ah but Bronson's words were cut short, the pain was unbearable, he couldn't help but groan as the agony dug into his bones.

No Caption Provided

"Shit... that looks like it hurts a lot. Are you alright?", the Connoisseur asked, his concern almost seeming genuine, "Course you not...", he chuckled lowly, "How can a fool ever be alright? In their mind a fool's all messed the f*** up. That's why you got a fool tryin'a tell the feds some shit about me when I was already a stock stealin' m******** before he even graduated from stealin' from gram-gram's purse", the Mad Kingpin paused. "Con, listen buddy... you're.. you're stressed okay? That ain't what happened that-", once more, Bronson was cut off, but by the Connoisseur this time. He took aim with his gun and his tone grew whimsical as he spoke in song, invoking the lyrics of the hook to a favorite hip hop song of his.

"In the ciiity of big dreams and bright lights.."
"Well what'cha see is what'cha get so m********** look twice"
"Hard times, just tryn'a get by"
"I remembah a night when I was tryn'a get high"
"So much stress.."

BLAM! He'd shot him. A fin-stabilized hypersonic dart through the brain, and he was dead.

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Senora_Muerte

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No Caption Provided

Sarah sat silently as she became more attentive to what Dos Caras had to tell her. She looked up to Efrain more than just as Dos Caras, El Rey de la Tierra Mia, he was the only father figure she knew. To see him even slightly distressed about something, the man who was practically her father, it caused her anger. She knew Efrain wasn’t perfect, she understood what kind of person he was and what kind of work he did with Tierra Mia, and what kind of work she did for him, but when it’s someone you have grown to love and absolutely trust without question, it didn’t matter.

A small sigh escaped her, knowing that her ‘sisters’ her fellow Las Catrina members, were taking care of something in her absence, gave her some relief, but also jealousy. She wanted to be the one to strike down anyone who stood in his way, in the name of Dos Caras, El Rey de la Tierra Mia, her father. But then… he continued to another problem and her eyes shift up to him, eagerly waiting for him to tell her what she could do. It seemed that someone was breaking into Tierra Mia property and stealing from them, from him. There was no way some random person would have knowledge on these locations it would have to be someone who knows the group.

"Someone on the inside?" The Catrina asked, questioning the loyalty of his own men. If there was one thing about Terra Mia members, they were loyal till death. For someone to betray the group, betray El Ray himself, it was suicide. They would know trying to play Dos Caras against him in his own game would only lead to their death, and Sarah would personally see to it. But he asked for the person to be brought back alive, and Sarah sucked on her teeth. But he was right, just pulling out a weed wasn’t going to stop it from spreading, you had to get down into the roots.

“Si mi Rey,” She stood up from her seat, her eyes filled with determination. “I will find whoever is behind this and bring them them to you.” With a half a smirk and bow of her head she made her way out of the office. Her mind was focused on the task at hand as she walked to the training room.

No Caption Provided

It was the quietest place in the building, if the other girls weren’t around. Laid out before her were a series of face paint. Black, white and red with her weapon of choice before her. A double bladed sword staff spear and Heckler-Koch G36K. Silently she began to apply the war paint to her face, it was routine to the point she no longer needed a mirror to apply it. But as she did so, she began to slowly clear her mind, until it felt as if she was outside of her body, looking down upon the city. She was channeling into a power… an energy she didn’t understand, never did, but she knew it was there, she could… feel a force always around her that she could never explain. But when she tapped into it, it always gave her what she needed. Flashes of a building came to her mind, followed by a single street sign “Harbor Gateway”. Then the silhouette of a figure, tall, strong shoulders, built like a soldier, his eyes determined. She couldn’t make out his face… but it was more than enough. Almost instantaneously she came to. Blinking her eyes a couple of times she slowly began to stand, dropping whatever was in her hand as she grasped only one of her two weapons, the staff. If she took the assault rifle, she would most likely kill the suspect, which is exactly what Dos Caras told her not to do. She would use that for another day. With that, she took off into the darken city.

Harbor Gateway 11:15 pm

No Caption Provided

Sarah stood silently in the shadows of the city, looking down at one of the businesses Tierra Mia had in Harbor Gateway, a trucking company, used to transport drugs, money… bodies, whatever needed to be moved. It was owned by Efrain, “Eagle Express” it was Araceli’s idea on the name. She said it had to “Sound white and Patriotic so police would never think twice to pull it over.” and she was right, Eagle Express never had issues with the police as it’s trucks had the iconic American Bald Eagle plastered to the side of the trucks with an American flag painted at the back door. But tonight, this is what was going to be hit next. On Thursday nights the trucks usually brought in goods, as money was usually transported out on the Sunday nights. This had to be an inside job, Sarah was sure of it, there was no way an outside person would know of the connection between Eagle Express and Dos Caras, Araceli was careful when she helped create the business, she did all the technical work, she was smart like that, there was no way she would have dropped the ball.

Silently she sat across from the building, not wanting to go inside and possibly alert the ones who were about to raid the building. So like a lioness waiting for a stray gazelle to come just close enough… she waited patiently to attack.

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Austri

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#3154  Edited By Austri

Late Night @ Laker's Game Afterparty

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"I swear to f*cking gaaawd! I'll-- I'll light allofyou up! Huh? Who said they wanted to test-- test me first you, you, you goddamn sonsa-"

Evelyn could never quite recall ever liking the taste of alcohol. Sure the fruity stuff wasn't exactly all that bad and the night's new Jungle Juice was always worth a shot, but regular juice still tasted great and nothing beat the occasional soda. Nonetheless, she couldn't remember the last time a beverage she bought wasn't preceded by being carded.

Mary Jane always made her lungs burn and gag, but no one knew how to show Evelyn a good time like the bud. Being drunk and high at the same time wasn't all that common these days but it was certainly a welcomed change in pace. Not that she didn't want to feel, but everything came with pain these days.

Joy and guilty

Creatively and loneliness

Bliss and anger

Love and jealousy

She just wanted to drown out the dark recess of reality and all the people talking at her along with it.

"Look at alllllll yoooou biiiiiiches... You know- Any of you know what it feels like to lose everything? How much I lost on that damn game?"

No Caption Provided

Inside she could hardly rectify the will to live. Evelyn staggers up to the drunk gambler behind the gun and shouts, " The only b*tch here is you and you've already ruined the afterparty so how's about you turn right back around, shut up and-"

The gambler takes a shot at Evelyn's dome. Surprisingly accurate for the intoxication. The bullet send the room into a restless frenzy. The shooter panics as he realizes what he's done. And the illusion of Evelyn that had taken the bullet soon vanishes like smoke in the wind.

The diversion she'd set gave the Halfling Eternal just enough time to close the gap between herself and the threat where she could take advantage of his confusion and wrestle the bury drunk down to the ground into a sleep inducing half nelson choke.

She adds with a quiet valor into his earn, "I know what loss feels like. I know how you feel. But you're doing it all wrong. You need help. We need help."

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Austri

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No Caption Provided

Apologies were never quite a good look on Sebastian. Like white after labor day, or pairing stripes with paisley, it just looked tacky on his character. Maybe he thought it was too human for him to consider, or perhaps it was too godly and wholesome for his conscious to support with his past in mind. Either way, centuries or war and conflict saw a cavalcade of burned bridges lain in his wastes all because he'd rather move on wholesale rather than putting in the effort to actually apologize or ask for forgiveness.

But The Hawk was different. Because there was no getting around this one. She was definitely in the right back at Super City and despite the results of fallout, the worst of his punishments fell back on Sebastian's own actions for building his whole kingdom on pillars of salt in the first place. Now, a new man and a fugitive of the law, it would have been one thing for Sebastian to just return to his old ways and ignore Luna's existence entirely, but if this was his second chance at doing what Eternal beings should do, than he wanted to set things straight with the woman who forced his hand on the straight and narrow path in the first place.

So as a show of good faith in his new, more righteous, robes, Sebastian invited The Hawk to a small family owned restaurant in Silver Lake. This small American dinner was warmer and far more friendly than anything in Silver Lake's past and with that in consideration, Sebastian hoped this setting might help sell this new shade he'd seemed to have found himself under because of the company.

@lunahawk

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LunaHawk

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No Caption Provided

Luna Hawk landed not far from the restaurant and walked the rest of the way, flanked by the Secret Service agents assigned to her by the government to keep her safe while she ran for President. She removed her helmet as she approached Sebastian's table. "You were near the top of the list of people I never expected to see again." She said honestly. The Hawk Lord pulled a chair out across from him and set her helmet on the table. "Let alone receive a personal invitation from." She slid down into the chair and leaned back in it, crossing one leg over the other. The two visible Secret Service agents kept their distance, but their presence was obvious.

"It's been a long time since Super City hasn't it? What brings you here?" She asked him. The Egyptian warrior fidgeted with her Nth Metal Weave jacket a little, straightening the short garment out but kept her eyes on him as she did so. I wonder if he knows parts of it are still working, even growing and repairing in the ruins of Gothic City. Or that I've tied my helmet directly into its expanding database for on the fly, up to the minute updates while in Gothic City.

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Austri

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#3157  Edited By Austri
No Caption Provided

"What brings me here? Well first of all it's this coffee, and hoagie combo they serve. Have you tried their food? You really should. Look, meals on me darling... Or should I get used to saying president?"

Sebastian takes a long sip from his coffee mug. Almost suspiciously long. Honestly, he's just gathering his words but as Stringer tilts his head back and the mug further up, you can see his bare wrists which are unstrapped with his famous stiletto blades. He's here unarmed. Or is an illusion? Either way the drink couldn't last forever so eventually Sebastian found himself back at eye level with The Hawk.

He calls the waitress over quietly and addresses the guest during the wait, " You know I spend a lot of time in that prison. Way more than I ever had to, but felt like I should have. Thinking of ways to crush this world before the next sunrise. Thinking of how I'd turn Gothic inside out and lay waste to every face that challenged my power. Mapping out exactly how I'd turn the whole world against you and take that last shot at your skull with my bare hands. I spent a whole year in that darkness. "

Sebastian's onyx eyes dart in every direction to suggest his clairvoyant awareness of the candidate's security, and continues more coyly between bites of his sandwich, " I'd lost my damned mind really. I could've escaped a thousand different ways, every waking day, but you broke me."

The waitress introduces herself as Claire and enthusiastically asks the heroine for her order and an autograph. Sebastian adds with a grin " Oh! Please order. I'll wait. You see, the good part is coming up. By the way, whaddya think of my new look?"

@lunahawk

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LunaHawk

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@austri:

Luna Hawk smirked at his original answer and then took the time to sign for the waitress and place an order for a simple cheeseburger and fries.

"Election isn't over yet." Luna Hawk said. "Just call me Luna Hawk, I've never been big on titles anyway.." She listened to him speak about his time in prison and leaned back in her seat, one hand resting on her helmet and the other in her lap. She tilted her head a little as he told her about how dark everything had been for him and if she was shocked by his revelation that he'd thought about killing her, she didn't show it.

"I like the look, it suits you well I think. I'm not sorry you ended up in prison but I am glad you found your way back to the light, so to speak anyway. I don't believe people only get one chance at life and that includes you." She traced her fingers over part of her helmet at random as she considered the man across from her. "What's the good part?"

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Austri

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@lunahawk: "Yeah, yeah, yeah. Thanks" Sebastian responds honestly to her compliments. And then, she wanted the good news. Right to business, as to be expected from someone so busy as Luna. Hit'er with the jam, he taught coyly, and continued, "Thing is, I sacrificed my humanity to do things better this time around. That's why I'm all smurfed up. This wasn't a fashion choice, it was-- it is a commitment to setting things straight. I am the Dead Man's Attorney now-- that's my title, at least-- and everything I do is to serve a higher purpose to un-f*ck all of things I f*cked up and I was hoping that would start with you. As a true hero of what was Gothic City and the rest of the world today, to a megalomaniac trying real damn hard to do better-- I was hoping you'd accept my humble apology and show me more mercy than I probably deserve from you, by taking my word on this dedication to a better cause I intend to obey."

Sebastian, as cold to the touch as a corpse six-feet under Antarctica, gloved his right hand and offers it in a handshake of solidarity.

(SOOOOOO sorry for the wait as well. Crazy timez ;P )

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LunaHawk

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@austri:

(no worries)

Luna Hawk listened and nodded once or twice while he spoke. She was genuinely surprised by his behavior, there were few, if any, super villains or even just all around bad guys who had ever apologized to her in her eighty two life times on this planet. Fewer still were the people who actually meant it and from what she could tell, he genuinely did mean it.

"I can count on one hand the number of times someone in your position has apologized to me." She said but she took his gloved hand in her own gloved hand. "I'm willing to give your second chance a shot though."Even if he went about it the wrong way, I think he generally meant well. There are times when I really understand why Solar Hawk was supporting him for awhile. In our day that sort of government was almost expected. Order over freedom and all that.

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Austri

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@lunahawk: " I won't let you down ma'am" Sebastian responds on top of the handshake.

A moment later is back to the sandwich and going on about how they specially curate the ham in a brown sugar pit to give it that extra "umphf" other restaurants just can't seem to capture. And he muses on about how do how interesting it has been trying to solve problems by the book lately, which sets him on a more important tangent, "Oh, which reminds me!... Ya'know, I want to set things right and do better than I used to-- Ya'know for the good of mankind and order of all things blahblahblah, but deep down there's this-- other thing I'm really doing this for."

He drops the remaining corner of his sandwich and finishes the drink entirely before continuing more seriously, "You see, when I was exposed as a criminal and tossed in prison, I lost a lot of important things. But things are replaceable and were probably unrightfully mine in the first place. Although, there was also one important person I lost too. My daughter. Maybe her name showed up in my records? Anyways, she was rightfully mine. And after I was arrested, apparently the same law enforcers were sent to persecute her as well... Which is soooo funny because she didn't actually do anything. They hunted her to the ends of this earth, and forced her into hiding. You and your hounds took her away from me. And I haven't seen nor heard from my daughter in over a year now because of a problem that started with people like you..."

Sebastian straightens his poster in the booth and adds, " I am so glad you were willing to forgive me for all of my mess, and on a professional level, I can't wait to work with you preventing great crimes and so on. But on a personal level-- Just between you and I... " Sebastian leans in real close and says just a notch above a whisper, "On a personal level, I don't feel like any of you heroes have paid for the crimes of kratocracy you thought you could get away with back in Super City. Personally you all crossed one line I can't forgive- You broke the only family I have left- And I will execute on that crime."

He pulls back and calls the waitress over one last time before peering directly into the eyes of his company, "My word is my bond and I am on a bit of a leash with this new Attorney of Life and Death occupation. But I will bring you hell. Not for the sake of gain or greed. Not today or tomorrow. But because I don't think you humans know how to execute true justice. The Eternals have heard my case and we have decided your kind is spoiled by power and I am going to correct that error. Starting with you-- Slowely, but surely."

"The meal was amazing ma'am-- Jessie is it? Thank you so so so much. May I get one check for the famous guest and myself?"

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LunaHawk

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@austri:

Of course, no one can ever just mean what they say, this is the twenty first century, everyone's gotta run around with an agenda and some bullcrap to go with it.

Luna Hawk waited until the waitress had departed and then picked up her helmet, since he'd just made quite clear that this was no longer a friendly meeting. She slid it back into place and there was a brief whirring sound as the computer activated and synchronized. She leaned close to him, the amber eyes of the helmet seeming to portray the anger that boiled beneath the surface of her words, though her voice was as cold as ice.

No Caption Provided

"You want to talk about hell? With a Hawk Lord? You must be joking. This is my eighty second incarnation, I assure you, I have been through hell many, many times. Let's have a discussion about your daughter. First, I had nothing to do with it and second, you're not getting the sympathy vote from me. You don't want your family to be torn apart? Don't go on a crime spree. It's pretty simple actually, it flies way over the head of most creeps, but it really is very simple. You want your daughter back, go find her, there are routes you can take to do that and no one will stop you."

She paused, her eyes narrowed. "But here's the thing, you want to pull some bullcrap on me, you want to threaten me with hell? You better be ready for that one. Don't bring your B game, because I've been threatened a thousand times, I've been through hell more times than I care to count and some punk with a sob story isn't going to make me shake in my boots. If you come for me, you won't have to worry about rotting in prison. So please, bring your so called hell, bring your eternals too if you need someone to hold your hand."

She shook her head, as if the whole threat had done more to disappoint her than anything. "For the record, I'm not human, you might start there." She reached into her pocket and tossed a series of gold coins onto the table, more than enough to cover the bill. "Thanks for the meal." She said. She straightened up, adjusted her shirt and and started to walk away.

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demonboundSitri

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[oc - "Just drop an intro somewhere," they tell me.]

Sitri straightened her apron slightly, affixing her Service Smile to her features, and stepped up to yet another table. "Good evening, gentlemen. My name is Sitri and I'll be your server tonight. Can I start you off with something to drink?"

"Siri? Like the lady on my phone!"

"Sitri, sir. With a T in the middle. What would you like to drink?"

"Siri, get me a Coke."

"Sitri, sir. We have Pepsi products. Will Pepsi be all right with you?"

"Siri would get me a Coke."

"Siri would give you directions to a store that sells Coke products, sir. Here we have Pepsi products. My name is Sitri. We also have lemonade and iced tea. Would you like a few minutes to decide?"

Sometimes people talked on the news about all the evils in the world these days. Monsters, villains, whatever the flavor of the month happened to be, and the heroes who fought them. Sitri didn't know too much about heroes and villains, but if there was a true evil in the world, it was probably customer service.

She reminded herself, again, that she had chosen this job. She could have gone to college. Everyone had expected her to go to college. The problem was that Sitri had never figured out what to go to college for, and if she was going to fail out and end up waiting tables, she had always figured it made more sense to save four years and tens of thousands of dollars and just wait tables in the first place.

And not all the customers were bad. Some were nice. Some were regulars. Some were even both nice and regulars, and those could give the newscasters a lesson in rare and mythical creatures just by existing. At least at this restaurant, she didn't get tourists. Tourists were widely held to be one of the great banes of LA, as well as any other city worth touring, and plenty of those that weren't. Sitri had never done much traveling. Well, technically, she had done a significant amount of traveling, exactly once, to put a thousand miles between herself and her mother, which she was still convinced was one of the best things she'd ever done.

Even if it meant she was at a rather dead-end waitressing job in an LA restaurant, waiting on people who liked to pretend she was a computer program and trying to figure out if her tips were going to be enough to make rent this month on her shoebox apartment.

...Maybe she ought to rethink that college thing one of these days.

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LunaHawk

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@demonboundsitri:

Luna Hawk entered the eating establishment without the presence of Solar Hawk, who was off taking care of other business currently. She smiled and waved a little to a few of her fans that were seated around the place, light reflecting from her helmet and lenses. Her wings were neatly tucked on her back and she spoke briefly with the hostess. Luna Hawk, or Kendra Saunders Hal as she was also known, had a great many fans among the teenage internet using population but she also had fans beyond those. Many still remembered her Presidential run fondly, especially those who were particularly concerned with the newly elected President and his alarmist security policies. There were also plenty who knew of her considerable work for the poor in Gothic City.

Luna Hawk nodded briefly to the hostess at the end of their conversation and was lead to a table in Sitri's area. Luna paused to remove her helmet, there was a soft click and a hiss as it deactivated and she pulled it from her head to review the stunning and exotic features that had earned her so many teenage fans.

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She slid into her seat and placed the helmet off to one side. "Thank you." She told the hostess and slipped a gold coin into the woman's hand. The Hawks were famous for only ever paying for anything with gold in various forms, all stamped in ancient Egypt. Kendra shifted in her seat and awaited the waitress. She removed a smart phone from her pocket and quietly searched the internet for something to occupy her attention while she waited. Her absurdly good hearing ensured she could listen in on any conversation in the room but she'd long ago trained herself to isolate conversations and hear only what she wanted to hear.

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demonboundSitri

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The dinner rush was, thankfully, starting to die down a bit, giving Sitri a bit more breathing room. Rush period left little room for anything other than the mental chain required to juggle the timing on orders and check-ins on all her tables. It wasn't a bad thing, and the money was best in that time, but it was always nice when things started winding down a little and she could sneak in a few sips of iced tea (glorious caffeine!) and let her head clear out a bit. She'd likely not have too many more tables before cashing out tonight, and that was just fine. She could go home and get a shower. A shower sounded lovely... even if it was doomed to be a shower in the tiny little stand-up shower box in her equally tiny apartment. At least the hot water was reliable.

Soon, she promised herself. For now, she was still working. The hostess jerked a nod in the direction of the newly seated table, letting Sitri know about the customer. She gave a little wave of vague acknowledgement and made her way over. Local celebrity? Oh, well. At least it's not tourists.

Although, as she got closer, she realized that the person was rather recognizable. Didn't she just run for president? Sitri was pretty sure about that. It occurred to her to wonder why she was eating here and not in a 3-star place somewhere, but she supposed it wasn't up to her to question the whims of politicians. Or superheroes.

Customer service smile, activate! She kept the thought firmly to herself. Ugh. 'CustomerServiceGirl' would be like... the worst superhero ever. "Good evening, ma'am," she said instead, "My name is Sitri and I'll be taking care of you tonight. Can I get you something to drink?" If she was subtly emphasizing the correct pronunciation of her name, it was only because she was getting quite irritated with Mr. Siri-can-you over at Table 12. Fortunately, she'd already given them their check and they looked like they were leaving. Thank goodness for small favors.

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LunaHawk

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"Sitri? That's a pretty name." Luna Hawk said with a smile. "I think a water will do for me, at least for the time being. I know it's a bit boring but it does do the job." She watched Sitri for a moment. "I know if I ask this question you'll give me an answer your bosses want you to give me, but I'll ask anyway and see what it gets me. What's your favorite thing to eat here? Keeping in mind that I'm not big into vegetarian food."

It was common for people new to a place to ask 'what's your favorite food here?' and it was equally common for the server to give a pre-rehearsed response designed to sell certain items on the menu. Luna Hawk knew this, but would know by vocal inflections usually beyond normal human hearing if she really believed what she was saying. That hearing was part of why she didn't make a mistake with Sitri's name.

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demonboundSitri

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At five dollars an hour plus tips? I don't eat here. I can't affordit. A lot of people tended to assume the servers got to try everything for free. That was not, unfortunately, the case most places. "I haven't had a chance to try everything," she said instead. "Plenty of people like steak, but I feel like you can get that anywhere. The pork loin is reported to be good. Personally, I'd probably recommend the braised chicken. It's simple, but the sauce is really nice." Which she knew for a fact, because all the servers would badger the cooks for spoonfuls of it.

She seems relatively normal in person. Sitri hadn't expected that. She'd always felt that in order to own a company or run for president, you had to be either insane or arrogant. Not that Luna Hawk necessarily wasn't insane or arrogant, given that Sitri's personal interaction with her was thus far still under the two minute mark, but at least she didn't present that way on first meeting. I guess you have to do something with your life if you don't end up as President. I never really considered what all the other candidates ended up doing. I guess they always figured they went back to their ranches and hosted parties for rich people and poorly-managed charities, and possibly wrote memoirs either praising or lampooning their opponents. Maybe not. Maybe I'm over thinking this a lot. Man, I need some more caffeine.

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LunaHawk

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Luna Hawk nodded a little. "Chicken sounds fine to me. Have a seat for a second though." She said and gestured to the seat across the table from her. "Your section has slowed down enough, you can take a few minutes. I've heard a lot about your adaptability and intelligence from people over the last month or so and over the last two weeks I've kind of kept an eye on you." She told her. "So if you're willing to sit down and listen a while, I have a proposition for you that you might be interested in taking advantage of."

Luna Hawk watched her for a moment, she could see the woman's eyes studying her, looking, she expected, for the flaws most people in her position had. The thing was that at her core, regardless of the adult film studio, the posters, the adult films she'd been in, the Presidential run, Luna Hawk was a warrior, bred to protect humanity. She didn't have time for arrogance and she liked to do things directly. Those other things, adult films and the like, she did them because in some way they helped her achieve something. The first film she'd released had been footage from her helmet and it had helped her destroy a twisted lawyer's career as part of the path to exonerating herself from the murder of The Monitor. After that she'd found them useful and fun for other reasons. After 82 life times, she just didn't much care about society's prude tendencies.

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demonboundSitri

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Sitri spared a glance for her section, but Luna Hawk was right: it was mostly cleared out now. She wasn't sure she wanted to hear a business offer, but at least she could sit down for a few minutes. And if nothing else, Luna Hawk had never been rumored to be one of the Jehovah's Witness crowd... nor was she likely to want to discuss the benefits of selling Cutco knives or aromatherapy candles or whatever the current Definitely-Not-A-Pyramid-Scam flair happened to be. "Let me put your order in and grab your drink," she said, deciding. She took a couple minutes - ideally to steel her nerves and calm herself, but realistically she was just making herself worry more.

Have I done anything in the last two weeks I need to worry about? No... no. Not for a while. The last couple weeks have been pretty calm.I certainly haven't done anything really bad. What have I done? Worked, mostly. And that hike last weekend.

...Oh, bugger. That hike. I'm pretty sure I spazzed out and killed a deer. She had. She still had a dozen or so steaks in her freezer from it at home. There was nothing wrong with killing a deer, the stupid things were everywhere, and she kept a valid hunting license. There were probably a few people who'd object to stalking it and killing it with your teeth, though. Especially if you weren't quite human while doing it. Sitri supposed that answered what this was all about.

Well, she tried to think positively, at least it's not Jehovah's Witness...

Sitri returned to the table with a glass of water for Luna Hawk and a glass of iced tea, which she took for herself as she sat down. Caffeine! If nothing else, it would be worth it for that. She hoped.

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LunaHawk

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"Thank you." She said and took a drink from her water before she resumed the conversation. "So, I'm expanding into mainstream film as well as what I already do." She explained. "The usual people you hire are easy enough to get...but today's world is a changing world, a dangerous one. I need people that can do more than act on a screen or set up a camera." She leaned back in her seat and smiled a little. "I need someone quick on their feet and intelligent enough to know when to act and when to talk. I want people who can take care of unusual tasks, do things that I simply need done as they come up. There's a few people I need like that, but you're the first I'm talking to."

Kendra took another drink before she continued. "Room and board will be provided as well as a regular paycheck. Bonuses if you feel like moonlighting for my other company. I know it's not a set list of things you'll be doing from day to day and it might sound a little generic, but it's what I need and I can tell you...your day won't be the same every time you come into work." She smiled with a nod in the direction of the establishment she currently worked for.

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demonboundSitri

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"That sounds... um..." Sketchy as hell? "...Kind of overwhelming," Sitri settled on after a while. She toyed with her glass, taking a drink and setting it back down. "Look. Everything I know about you says this is probably wrong... but it really sounds like you just asked me to be your evil henchman. And I really, really don't want to be anyone's evil henchman." She was envisioning scenes from The Godfather: 'I'm going to make him an offer he can't refuse.'

Sitri thought it would be really easy to be someone's evil henchman. She also thought she would be really good at it. She was trying very hard not to end up as one, though, even if it meant working a dead-end waitressing job. Maybe all that meant was that she'd be one of those people who snapped one day and murdered a restaurant full of people... but Sitri figured that every day until then when she wasn't murdering a restaurant full of people had to count for something.

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LunaHawk

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Luna Hawk smirked. "No, nothing like that. Evil meta-humans can threaten anything and will often target the easy or the obvious rather than make large scale attacks. I want some to protect my people against this sort of incursion. I also want someone to protect them against more mundane problems, abusive relatives, bad relationships, things of that nature." She told her. "I work with a lot of girls that come from very unfortunate and difficult backgrounds. Part of getting them off the street and into a new life is making sure they are safe from the greedy monsters that will try to pull them back into the bad life."

She smiled a little and took a drink of her water before she continued. "I can't be everywhere at once...and it's often that I get called away to protect a city or defend against an attack of some sort. I need to know my people are in good hands while I'm gone...and I need someone I can develop a trusting relationship with so that eventually, I can teach them to do more than protect actresses from jerk boyfriends."

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demonboundSitri

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"So... you want me to be your non-evil henchman," Sitri surmised, not entirely serious... but not without a grain of truth, either. She thought about it for a while.

There are so many reasons why this is a horrible idea. She doesn't know... what I get like. She wouldn't understand.

Then again, who would understand? And... maybe she'd be able to help. Or know someone who could.

But would it be enough? Would it be able to help before something horrible happens? She sighed, softly. "Look... there's... a lot to think about there. And I don't think this is the time or place to discuss it. So... I'm not willing to sign on right now. But I'd be willing to discuss it some time."

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LunaHawk

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Luna Hawk removed a business card from her pocket and slid it across the table with a gold coin on top of it. The image depicted on the coin was a long dead Pharaoh of ancient Egypt. "I get that." She said with a nod. "Give it some thought and if you change your mind, give me a call." She took another drink of her water and relaxed in her seat, she was here to eat as well after all and wouldn't just leave because the conversation was over.

"I appreciate you listening to the offer and more importantly, your honesty." She told her after a moment. "You can also stop by the studio and see if I'm in the office or filming somewhere. My secretary will be happy to tell you either answer."

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demonboundSitri

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The rest of the evening finished without comment, and Sitri returned to her tiny apartment, carefully putting her cash from the night into a lockbox, then dropping her apron and the rest of her clothes unceremoniously on the floor and taking that much-needed shower. Even if her apartment was tiny, it did have good water pressure and a good supply of hot water, so that was very nice. Fifteen minutes later, she was feeling almost human again, which was probably more human than she actually was, all things considered.

She didn't much care to consider that, though, so she put it out of her mind and pulled on some uninspired pajama pants and an old T-shirt, and went to raid the refrigerator. There was a bag of pre-made salad that made for a quick excuse for dinner. Sitri had found that she generally wasn't too hungry after work; she tended to have her main meal before her shift and just eat salad afterward. Somewhat sustained, she went to go be a responsible adult and put her clothes in the hamper. She checked her apron pockets, coming up with Luna Hawk's business card... well. She'd have to think about that. Not tonight, though. She didn't think she wanted to think about anything serious until morning at the earliest. Onto the counter it went.

Morning, as usual, came earlier than she wanted it to. That was part of living in apartments; once everyone else started getting up, there was no sense trying to sleep in. Might as well get up, have some toast and tea, and... think about what to do about that card. Sitri toyed with it, sighed, and picked up the phone to see about a meeting. She didn't have to work that evening, so she might as well get it over with. She picked a public space for the meeting, a little out-of-the-way park that didn't get too much use aside from the inevitable joggers, none of whom were interested in anything other than their own business. When the time came, she was there, waiting on a park bench and listening to some music, and questioning what the hell she was actually doing there.

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LunaHawk

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Luna Hawk arrived soon enough and took a seat on the park bench beside her. "Good to hear from you, I was hoping you might consider my offer again." She smiled a little and removed her helmet, just as she had in their first encounter. "I know the way this all happened is a little weird, maybe even 'shady' but when you deal with meta-humans, with super villains and mega-thieves and aliens from beyond time, you kind of do things through less than standard means...it becomes a habit."

She reached into a pocket (many people questioned how those particular form hugging clothes could manage pockets) and removed a few photographs (yes, photographs) from her pocket and handed them over to the young woman. "I wanted you to see some of the people you'd be protecting. On the back is a little bit about their life and why they need protection. You'll see a theme, broken homes, broken families, bad situations. These are the kinds of people I hire to train into actors and actresses."

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demonboundSitri

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Sitri felt obligated to take the photos - which had been where, exactly? In the waitressing world, she had long ago learned that people kept things in all sorts of weird places. Fortunately the photos were not damp, slimy, or otherwise disgusting, such as she could tell. She set them down without looking at them, though. "I think..." she started softly, "I think you do not understand what you are asking me to do." She shifted uncomfortably for a bit, trying to organize her thoughts, which were all in a tangle. "I don't deal well with bad things happening. I can... feel it. Feel the way it makes people. I can feel their hurt." Her eyes sparkled a moment, amber. She closed them and took a few breaths before continuing.

"Sometimes it gets to be too much. When that happens... I don't have a lot of control over things. I don't have a lot of control over me. I killed my first boyfriend, you know." Why the hell was she telling her this? Too late to stop now, and maybe it needed to come out, anyway. "He was my first... everything. First date. First kiss. First time having sex. First love, maybe, in the way of passionate emotional teens. The kind of love that probably isn't real love, but feels like it at the time. High school was awful, and it was a bad week. A couple of the kids at our school had gotten drunk and gone for a drive and crashed, and killed themselves and a couple other people, and I could kinda feel all that and it was making me weird... so that night when he broke up with me, everything just kinda snapped. He didn't deserve it. He didn't do anything wrong. Just decided he was ready to move on from us, and was honest enough to say so and brave enough to do it in person. And it was just too much, and all the bad stuff didn't stay inside any more, and I shifted into whatever the hell I am when I'm not me, and I killed him and ripped the flesh from his body and lapped at his blood as it cooled. It tasted amazing."

Sitri paused, shuddering a little. Ooh, boy. Definitely time to take a few deep breaths and get that under control. "I remember it, you know, she continued, after a bit, quieter now, "It's not like when crazy people kill someone and you see them on TV and they say they didn't know what they were doing, they don't remember what happened. I remember every bit of it. Sometimes I feel bad about it. But not always."

She turned her gaze to Luna Hawk, definitely amber eyed now. "You want me to be a hero. That's... kind of you. It's probably a kindness I don't deserve. Definitely one I wouldn't expect. But... I'm not a hero. Most days, it takes everything I am not to be a villain."

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LunaHawk

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Kendra let her talk and listened to her story. She smiled a little, the smile of a long life and the confidence of experience. Never mind that physically Luna Hawk was somewhere around twenty three. "Everyone thinks their story is unique, that no one else can struggle as hard as they do to not do the things that would come easy to them. The people who are true heroes, the true blues as some people call them, are an extremely rare breed. Most of us struggle with ourselves all the time, some more than others. We all have our inner demons, some of us more literally than others."

She made eye contact with Sitri without averting her gaze. "You're going to arrive at a choice sooner or later, one day you will either submit to your inner demon or you will conquer it...but that conflict is coming whether it does while you're defending someone or just sick of how people treat you in the food industry. Solar Hawk served with someone named Raeyn, she was a being powerful enough to consume galaxies and she had done it in the past...enjoyed it in the past. She spent every single day of her life here on Earth trying not to do it again. If that woman can stop herself, then so can you."

She shook her head a little. "It won't be easy, I know that. Every day you will have to choose to do good and you will have to learn to use your will to master your struggle but you know...that's not actually different than what you do right now. You'll be exposed to more, you'll struggle more, but one day if you don't do this or something like it, you will lose control and when you do if there's no one in your corner, someone will come a long and end you."

She motioned to the images. "You don't have to take this job and I know it won't always be easy, but I think it will be better for you."

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demonboundSitri

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Sitri thought about that. Luna Hawk had a lot of good points, she had to admit. What was that line from that book she'd been reading? 'The old woman's eyes narrowed. "You're dangerously ignorant, girl," she said. "It is not your fault at the moment, though if you grow much older, it will be.' Sitri read a lot. She didn't really have friends out here in LA, despite the fact that she'd been living there for years, she had just never really made making friends a priority, and she got enough random human interaction from her job, so when she wasn't working or hiking, she tended to either read or listen to music. E-books were the greatest invention ever, as far as she was concerned. Libraries were great, too, but they didn't have everything, and there was always That One Guy who had out the book you wanted.

In any case, the book was right, or Luna Hawk was right, or they were both right. Sitri was a bit of a ticking time bomb, and while what she was able to do herself was great for extending the clock, it didn't do anything about defusing the bomb itself.

"I... maybe," she said quietly, "But I really don't have control over what I become. And I don't know how to make sure I don't hurt someone who doesn't deserve it."

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LunaHawk

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Luna Hawk could practically see the thought process on the other woman's face and smiled a little, pleased that she was considering it through rather than simply reacting...many people didn't like to hear words such as hers and responded in kind. Kendra never meant any offense by it, she simply wanted the woman to understand the truth.

She nodded a little as Sitri spoke again after her careful consideration. "I understand." Luna said. "We can work on that, I'm not going to leave you with no support mechanism and no help if things get difficult for you."

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demonboundSitri

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Sitri nodded a little bit, taking a breath and letting it out. "All right," she said. "But I want to keep my waitressing job. I know a lot of people don't think it's much of a job, but it's mine, and that's important to me. I can probably make the schedules work out though, especially if I'm mostly working days for you and evenings at my other job." Logistics were easy. Sitri realized that she was letting herself focus on the scheduling issues as a way of keeping herself from having to think too much about the real problem - the problem of herself.

She made herself meet the hero's eyes. "You're powerful enough," she started softly, "Luna Hawk. If I get out of hand... will you stop me? Whatever thattakes?"

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LunaHawk

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"Keeping your other job seems reasonable enough." Luna Hawk agreed. She kept her gaze, her golden brown eyes not wavering once. "If you get out of hand, I'll take care of it, you don't need to worry about that." She added. "I am literally built to protect people, you have nothing to worry about...but we're going to work on making sure you don't lose control. We Hawk Lords are known for our stubbornness, I'm not going to let you deal with it on your own.

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demonboundSitri

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"Then... I guess we see where it goes from here," Sitri said. She was still worried; after all, she knew what she was capable of when things got out of hand, and she hadn't yet figured out how to keep that from happening. At the same time, she wasn't going to figure that out unless she started doing something about it, and maybe this would be enough of a controlled environment that it wouldn't... well. Maybe the most she could hope for was that no one got killed. That didn't seem like a lot to hope for, but at the same time, it seemed like too much.

I have got to get this under control somehow. It might not be perfect, but it's worth a try. I have to try something. "All right... when do you want me to start?

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Sarah_and_Lara

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#3184  Edited By Sarah_and_Lara

Woo!

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LunaHawk

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"Then... I guess we see where it goes from here," Sitri said. She was still worried; after all, she knew what she was capable of when things got out of hand, and she hadn't yet figured out how to keep that from happening. At the same time, she wasn't going to figure that out unless she started doing something about it, and maybe this would be enough of a controlled environment that it wouldn't... well. Maybe the most she could hope for was that no one got killed. That didn't seem like a lot to hope for, but at the same time, it seemed like too much.

I have got to get this under control somehow. It might not be perfect, but it's worth a try. I have to try something. "All right... when do you want me to start?

"Tomorrow works for me." Luna Hawk said. She stood up and slid her helmet back on over her head. There was a soft whirring sound as the computers inside of it activated and revved up. "Would you prefer to be paid in gold, paper money or direct deposit?" She asked with a smirk. "Payday is once every two weeks, you'll get bonuses if you have to deal with something particularly unpleasant and as with everyone who works for me, I'll cover your tuition should you decide to go to College for anything."

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Sarah_and_Lara

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Hmmmm. Gonna have to do something.

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demonboundSitri

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Gold? Seriously? What sort of weird economy would that be useful in?"Cash, preferably," Sitri answered the question, "I don't like using banks more than I have to." It was way too easy to spend too much when you were using a bank card - the numbers didn't seem to matter as much. When you went to the store with a card and meant to spend $20, things got fudged and you ended up spending $23 or $24, and if that happened regularly, then you had to subsist on ramen for a week. Or on less. If you went to the store and only brought $20, you bloody well made sure that was all you spent. Sitri might not know much about how to be a hero, but she knew how to be poor. She'd had a lot of experience with it. Some people might have said that wasn't good experience, but she didn't agree. She didn't have any debts, and if she had a teeny-tiny matchbox apartment, it was a teeny-tiny matchbox apartment in a good part of town. Those things were important. There was a big difference between barely staying afloat and going under. She and her mother had been both, growing up. The former was definitely better.

"What time do you want me there?"

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LunaHawk

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"Cash it is." Luna Hawk smirked. "Why don't you come in around three? We'll get you situated and started on your first day. I'll give you a tour of the studios, show you where you should and shouldn't go and then introduce you to the people you'll be dealing with the most." Luna Hawk said.

I think there's two films recording that day, so we'll have to avoid two of the rooms, no big deal, see one sound stage you've seen all of em. "IT will also be a good time for you to tell me what makes you uncomfortable and what you'd like to be around vs what you wouldn't. Not everyone that works on the staff wants to be around the sound stages and so on."

Kendra smiled a little. "I look forward to seeing you there."

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demonboundSitri

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Sitri went back to her apartment for a while, not entirely sure how she'd gotten herself talked in to all this. She hadn't wanted... hadn't meant...

Well, if you didn't want her to talk you in to it, why did you call her and give her the opportunity? Sitri's rational side was unsympathetic. She sighed, and wondered what she was supposed to wear. On one hand, it was sort of like a job interview, but on the other hand, it was sort of like a job, and if she was going to be discouraging anyone, she needed to be able to move, so maybe it was better just to wear clothes she could kick ass in.

Probably that, especially because her full wardrobe of 'professional clothing' was a few items inherited from her mom. Yeah... that wasn't a good idea. She went with black pants and a black tank top, because nothing went better with black than more black, then tossed a lacy openwork sweater in pale blue over the ensemble as a concession to civilization. There, see, I am a civilized person wearing a pretty sweater. I am not an evil henchman.

And because she was sort of a henchman, even if she was trying to avoid the evil, she checked her 9mm and put it in its holster on her belt. Hope Luna Hawk isn't one of those anti-gun people. There sure were a lot of those out here in California. Sitri had experienced many conversations with coworkers that went along the lines of "What did you do this weekend?" / "Oh, I went out to the shooting range." / Horrified gasp of dismay! Offended sensitivities! Seriously, did people think the shooting range was populated by baby ducks or something? Welcome to Bob's Quack'n'Whack? Sitri grinned to herself at that - the mental image was hilarious. Horrifying, but hilarious. She tied her hair back in a sensible ponytail, and killed time until she needed to head over.

Fortunately, the place was easy enough to get to by public transit, which was good because Sitri didn't own a car and didn't like taking cabs, even when she could afford them, which she usually couldn't. Cities usually had decent public transportation; it wasn't like living out in the middle of nowhere where you needed a vehicle to get anywhere at all, and cars were expensive to own, especially in a city where parking was at a premium. She approved of public transit. Sure, there were some idiots on the trains sometimes, but there were stupid people everywhere, and Sitri had a great don't-mess-with-me death stare. The transit station left her with a bit of a walk to get to the right place, but she liked walking, so that was good, too. It wasn't hard to get there by three.

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LunaHawk

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@demonboundsitri:

As she arrived at the studio Sitri was greeted with the sight of two rather large guards outside of the door, a leftover from the days in Grimm more than it was an actual necessity here in LA. The two men, both standing over six foot five, were former NFL linebackers offensive linemen and had the tree trunk shaped bodies to go with it. One of them, who had hands easily three times the size of Sitri's own squinted at her and motioned for her to stop for a second. He reached behind himself and removed a scanning device which he used by pointing at her and pressing a button. A moment later and he read the screen, put the device back on his belt and motioned for her to continue through the door...without saying a word through the entire process.

Presuming she continued inside, the studio was quite normal from there with a very normal looking secretary behind a desk who seemed to be expecting someone of her description. "Down the hall, four doors down on the left. Don't go through the other doors or you'll disturb filming." She said and returned to her work on the computer. The rooms were sound proofed and the fourth door (which was open) lead directly into Luna Hawk's office, a room decorated with elements from ancient Egyptian culture. There was another woman in the room with her that bore an identical look to her except there was a brighter fire in her eyes and she seemed to carry a strange sort of sadness to her otherwise ready to break heads posture. Luna Hawk and the other woman both had their helmets off, which only served to further display how identical the two women were.

Luna Hawk smiled a bit and the other woman turned as Sitri appeared in the doorway. "Right on time, early actually." Luna Hawk said. "Sitri, this is Solar Hawk." She said, gesturing to the other woman.

Solar Hawk nodded. "I won't get in your way then." She said, a comment directed more at Luna Hawk. Her voice was identical as well, though only Solar Hawk wore a mysterious white ring on her right hand. Also distinguishing the two was a difference in weaponry. Luna Hawk wore a pistol and a crossbow pistol combination on her hips along with a mace, Solar Hawk wore only a mace. Solar Hawk shifted to give Sitri more room to enter the office.

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demonboundSitri

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Sitri gave a polite smile to Laverne and Shirley at the doorway, and refrained from any compensation-commentary on the reasonable grounds that she might need to work with them. Better to get acquainted first, and then make that sort of commentary when she knew whether they could take a joke. Of course, if they kept up the silence, she'd never know. Maybe they were part of one of those weird cults that cut the tongues out of their initiates. Didn't seem like Luna Hawk's style though. But then again, how much did she really know?

She murmured a thanks to the secretary, a little surprised that she was being permitted to just walk there on her own without an escort, but she supposed it wasn't like they didn't know who she was. If she screwed something up, they'd know who to blame. Luna Hawk's office seemed nice, not so boring as some offices were. A few of those artifacts were probably even expensive - not that Sitri was much of a connoisseur, anyway. Material wealth was having enough to pay the bills and put food on the table. Anything else was details.

She stepped into the office, debating what sort of statement she was supposed to make, and settled on the very neutral "Good afternoon."

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LunaHawk

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#3193  Edited By LunaHawk

@demonboundsitri:

Solar Hawk nodded, offered a brief smile and then left the two of them alone in the office. Luna Hawk smiled a bit. "So Sitri shall we take the grand if brief tour? I'll show you around a little. Remember though to look at the lights above the doors. Green means you can enter, red means there's someone filming and you shouldn't disturb the sound stage. I think there's only one stage being used today, at least right now, so we can meet some of the girls and other staff members while we walk."

Luna Hawk picked up a set of keys from her desk. "Is there anything you don't feel comfortable around? Some people are ok doing security for active sound stages, some aren't. I don't want to put you in a situation you're not comfortable with. Once our other studio opens that won't be an issue, because it's the mainstream studio I want you to do the most work for."

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Ironcore

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@ananke

Los Angeles. What a strange city.

In a matter of blocks, the humans almost seemed like they were from completely different planets. Rich and poor, good and evil, sane and insane, the array of human beings in this city was staggering. Nearly too much for his processors to handle. He had spent several days watching and learning, trying to figure out what made humans... well, human. Since his mind opened and he began to think for himself, that was the number one priority in his mind. To be more human.

Still, several days of watching and learning and sneaking were starting to take its toll. Not physically, his power supply was robust, and he was able to take residual energy around him and store it for power. He still felt fatigued somehow, mentally. It was a strange feeling, one that his processors couldn't really figure out. He had been learning much about humans, but at the same time he felt further away from them than before.

Deciding that he needed to rest, to contemplate on what he learned, he looked for somewhere quiet. He found a network of alleyways that were far removed from the streets and the humans, and he took the opportunity to reflect on what he had learned. Walking slowly through the alleyways he took a moment to move to the wall and sit down, leaning back against it. Humans were a complex puzzle, and he wasn't yet sure if he was enjoying trying to solve it or not.

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Ananke

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#3195  Edited By Ananke

@ironcore: Perdoname; everything just happened so fast!

"{Target is in sight. Bio-scan shows no signs of significant life in the area. We're good to go.}"

Franklin sighed, blowing a cloud of smoke while dropping the cigarette butt and stamping it out (though the gesture was hardly necessary on the asphalt). He fiddled with the carton for another and pulled it out, but struggled to light it. His hands were shaking. "But why me? I don't have a suit of armor or skills that'll help me if things go sour. That'll only take a second, and then your backup's just gonna be retrieving a corpse." He hadn't taken a single step, still waiting at the same constant, what he assumed was safe, trailing distance. He was stalling.

"{Calm down. You'll be fine,}" came a masked feminine voice on the other end of the comm. "{Just...engage carefully. It'll be over in no time.}"

That wasn't the slightest bit reassuring, he thought, finally succeeding with the cigarette. He took a long drag and waited for his nerves to calm. Not exactly a resounding success, but the altered flow of neurochemicals helped somewhat in boosting the hardware mutant's morale.

Contact was uncomfortable. Social situations weren't exactly his thing; the subtle and overt cues in verbal and nonverbal communication weren't unlikely to go over his head, even in some moments where he might be communicating with a veritable open book. It should've helped, Ananke reasoned, that this thing wasn't human. It was a piece of hardware and circuitry, and Franklin specialised in hardware (hence his codename). But she was wrong. It didn't help, not in the slightest. Knowing equipment (if you could call what he did "knowing") didn't mean some sort of hippie-like connection and "brotherly love" with machines. More than anything, he focused on the danger.

Yet there he was, moving as instructed, each step carrying him closer and closer to potential bodily harm...Or a new playmate, some not-entirely-conscious part of him acknowledged. Time would tell.

"Hey." Franklin Park stood at the edge of the Alley, wide eyes looking in the robot's general direction but not directly on any part of its physical form. Shit. Lines...Like a wrecking ball it hit him in an instant. He'd forgotten everything he was intended to say. His mouth hung stupidly, half-open, while he sifted through panicking thoughts for some halfway decent improvisation.

Uuhhh....

"So you're new around here? What...are...Where'd you come from?"

Shit. That was stupid. But for better or worse, now he'd locked it in. He was then so focused on the stupidity of what he just said, and the potential for the machine to punch, shoot, vaporise or somehow end him at any moment that he didn't even hear his companion mocking him on the line, both amused and annoyed at once.

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Ironcore

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As he mulled over his thoughts, an entirely new process for him, his sensors picked up a disturbance nearby. A biological one. His head turned towards the source of the disruption, his eye glowing as his iris contracted. The human spoke, and Ironcore was able to pick up immediately that he was nervous. Why he was, however, eluded him.

He stood slowly, finding that he was taller than this human. His question was an odd one... forced, unsure. Still, he knew little about humans, so the forced question didn't seem odd. It was curious if anything. "I am new to Los Angeles, if that is what you are asking. My location of origin is classified, however I came from the desert to the east." he spoke, his vocal tone even and unobtrusive. It was calming, almost, with the slightest of inflection to take the edge off a normally harsh robotic voice.

"Are you in need of assistance? You seem hesitant to speak."

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Ananke

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@ironcore: Franklin's eyes rose with the robot, briefly meeting the mechanical irises before his own biological programming seemed to unconsciously force him once again to avert his gaze. They flitted around on the ground, in the space around it, processing its words with what was then a detached, cold lens. He understood the danger hadn't passed (not by a long shot), but as he stood off from it and heart its voice, the establishment set him at an autopilot-like peace.

Meanwhile the entire communication was likewise being fed through the comm, allowing the girl to receive and relay information with regards to any new developments.

"{Desert to the east? That could be any-fecking-thing...Well, whatever. Not like it's gonna change what we have to do. Just keep 'im talking.}"

"...Yeah, I guess you could say that. I need some help. Can you...would you help me?" he asked, far-out stare fixed on the bot's shoulder.

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Ironcore

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The droid tilted his head slightly, making note of the nuances of the man's movement. His words, movements, and facial expressions were recorded and compared against a large database of human emotions, allowing him to slowly piece together what the man was feeling. Fear was one, yet there was something else he wasn't able to determine yet. The man kept avoiding his gaze, which was locked on him with laser-like precision.

"That depends on the nature of your distress. State your problems and I will attempt to rectify them." His unblinking stare could have been perceived as unnerving, so he alternated expanding and contracting his iris, in an attempt to blink. "Do you fear me?" he asked bluntly, his head tilting slightly the other direction now.

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Ananke

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#3199  Edited By Ananke

@ironcore:

His unblinking stare could have been perceived as unnerving, so he alternated expanding and contracting his iris, in an attempt to blink.

That is adorable.

"Fear you..." Franklin repeated as though he himself were asking. He'd apparently found a comfortable resting place for his eyes because they settled on a spot and froze there. He considered the question but didn't answer. Not verbally at least. He half-turned as he spoke, not necessarily in a hurry to move; more avoidant than anything.

Just tell him the truth. He drew on the cigarette and nodded to himself, breathing another cloud indiscriminately into the air. Not like it'd affect the robot or anything. "Can you follow me? I'm having a bit of a mechanical problem. Kinda stuck out here, not really familiar with the area or its people and...I dunno, maybe you're the solution. Figured you could take a look at my car."

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Ironcore

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(Thought you'd approve of that. :P)

Ironcore stared at the man, finding his avoidance strange. His body language was all wrong for someone who was afraid of him. Still, instead of setting off warnings in his mind it only made him more curious. The man was obviously hiding something, and if he went with him he would find out what it was.

Now, the droid wasn't stupid. Naive, absolutely. He watched as he took a drag of his cigarette, registering burning tobacco among other chemicals. "I have limited knowledge of civilian vehicles, but I will make an attempt. What is the purpose of that?" he pointed to the man's cigarette, not seeming to notice the rather abrupt segue in conversation.