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Modern/Futuristic Roleplay / Re: Helter Close
« Last post by Verse on April 08, 2020, 08:48:24 pm »
Clarence Smith was perhaps the closest thing to a Sentinel Family member that Helter Close had, without the blood ties. His father was rich off of some computer scheme, that used the treeline for cooling in the winter, and the boy himself was strong and hulking. Old, noble features, healthy and full of spring. Of course, around here, rich and handsome and strong and even white as a sheet was worth about jack shit if you didn't belong to the last names that came with a totem. It left the justified, spoiled boy in a constant bad mood.

He was wearing what he ought at his age. Jeans into boots, and the varsity jacket his position on the team earned him. After repeating twice, there was no one who could beat him. His blonde hair was geled back and his blue eyes were dark for his heritage. He of course had this spiraling interest in the magic gathering that supposedly held up the very fabric of their homes, but that in turn burnt into something bitter. It is hard to recognize other's blessings, if you don't know how to count your own other than to stock pile them.

He had just been chatted up by one of the pretties in his class. They'd had a good back and forth until she asked him about one of the wolves on the team. Like he'd be a fucking mediator for her misguided admiration. It took all he had not to backhand Rebecca right then and there, watch her pokadots and lace hem take on the dirt of the cafeteria floor. But instead he'd indulged in some skipping and brooding, until that wasn't enough. A  young ego is a monster, too. And monsters are hungry in Helter Close.

He clomped around, but it didn't help. Percussion wasn't an actual treatment for late-teen scorn. Violence was. The bright square of Cleance halted him in his tracks. Ah. There was something that might help, after all. And there was a gathering of little royal animals in there, too. He smiled, crooked, like he already pitied them. Wyatt could be a problem, they'd probably be friends if he wasn't one of the families, but Connie? She was just a nicely assembled girl, not really worth all the attention her family garnered. And she was also dark. Hah. She had no business on top of the social food chain. It was actually a little sickening how Wyatt looked like he was flirting with her. Good thing Sentinel Families didn't mix. No families should mix. Clearance had an A in biology on merit of his prowess in his sport.

Before he could think, he'd opened the door and made the bell jingle. He didn't like the merry ring when he was feeling grinchy. It was really pissing him off to see clean Wyatt hold that girl. A scowl on his face when her turned off to the side, and lifted a trinket with herbs and a red band incorporated into. "Stupid." he muttered as he turned it around in his hand.


Her smile was just as contrary to who she was now as him talking to her. But neither of them truly knew that. Or at least he assumed they didn't. Vester smiled to encourage hers, and they had a bit of quiet together, here, on the streets they'd patted small shoes over a decade ago. She had all her thoughts around her like a cloud, but he couldn't see them very well even when he tried. Maybe his efforts were tired these days.

But he wasn't too tired to see if the girl who'd been with him when he didn't care much about houses and family names could make things better, to makes things breathable. Like kissing the ceiling of an underwater cave. He had all these somber notions running around like static in his aura, and she cleaned them out with her question. He laughed and it hurt like new things hurt. She was grown, but she was still Noel.

"I've got a silver dollar." It was a grown-up joke. One they understood now. Vera's and other quaint, restored stores in the town center had nostalgic theme. The adults in town had taken to using silver dollars to pay as a celebration of times gone. It had become an expression of wealth in Helter Close. You got a silver dollar meant you had money. To the two children playing at being grown it was a throwback to when they were given large, mercury shining coins by their elders. He'd of course spend it on foam rockets for himself and his litter, and hard candy for Noel.

He opened the door for her and sighed with some involuntary relief when he stepped over the threshold, after her. This place had just the right wear on the wood paneling, and just the right sheen to the glass jars that held fresh candy. The counter was always somehow stuffed with confectionery, and the tables had pretty, polished brass details. The town family that owned Vera's knew what it needed to be, and spared no expense. During a torrential rain that saw a lot of this devastated, the town council had paid for the damages because of what a landmark it was.

Something caught his attention and he automatically grabbed her shoulder to turn her to the chocolate gnomes on display. They'd always been excited for the assembly of them when they were little. It changed from week to week. He squatted down at the scene. Gnomes at the mill. All of it was for sale so everything was removable, which meant they had been accosted relentlessly by the children passing through, but he still reached to stroke one over the head.

"This ones my cousin, I think, because he's looking at the Woods." his mouth lifted to the side when he looked up at her, the grin showing off a newly sprouted fang unintentionally. "And this one's you." he explained, tapping another one until it fell. He had deduced it on merit of its yellow hat.
OOC Discussion / Re: Helter Close OOC
« Last post by Ara on April 08, 2020, 12:49:25 pm »
Nonsense! And I extra love rping with you two because I get to make all the side characters I want. I love them. I love those stupid side characters.
Modern/Futuristic Roleplay / Re: Helter Close
« Last post by Ara on April 08, 2020, 12:46:41 pm »
Wyatt smiled at the familiarity Connie offered up so naturally. He leaned against the counter, watching her make the tea. Carvers had such a different energy than Eatons. The scents of chamomile and peppermint rose up in the steam, competing with all the others permeating this shop. He laughed a little. “Are you giving me bedtime tea in the morning? Is it like an herbal roofie? You know you could just go for it, I’d let you take advantage of me.”

He never knew if the jokes were too close to home—too close to an almost their teen selves had reached for. There was a reason Eatons tended to marry nice, sweet, naïve people. They were all trying to find that missing piece, the warmth that didn’t exist in their home. He had realized since then how tragic they all were, because that warmth never survived in their family. They brought in kind people and made them into proud, cold things. Luckily, there was also a reason Sentinel families didn’t have romances—a lot of reasons actually, clear allegiances not the least of them. His father had found out and Wyatt had pushed their almost back to friendship.

“Oh, I’m sure the tea will fix all my problems,” he assured, reaching for the cup she offered. His hand brushed hers still on the cup, her gaze turned out the front window with narrowed scrutiny. She hadn’t been listening.

Wyatt followed her gaze. He had seen Vester on his way in but how had he missed the mud witch in bright yellow? There was something off with that Medici. They chalked it up to his girlfriend skipping out on him and the sudden awakening of his powers. If Wyatt had more room in his skull for other family’s problems, he might have dwelt on it. He would regret that he hadn’t someday. Instead, he assumed her focus was on Noel—the withering Laurent. His father said not all Laurents survived adulthood. Some just faded. Claudette had asked what that meant—fading—but he had just shrugged and smirked to himself.

Connie recovered herself quickly, all smiles and cheer and going on about a hand cream. She came around the counter and he put his tea down, catching her hand and pulling her back before she could get to the wall of samples. He lifted her hand as if inspecting it, sliding his thumb against her palm. “They are soft…” he conceded, flipping her hand over, palm up and scrutinizing it. He hummed as though serious. “You have a very healthy fate line, Con, but you’re head line is looking real shallow… Maybe you should have studied harder?” He stroked a random crease in her palm, no idea what he was talking about.


Bell had never told her what happened that night Vester came to the property. They hadn’t come up to the house. But even if she hadn’t heard it in the whispers of the ground and the dead, she would have known by that shadow following the Medici boy.

She blinked up at him when he asked about her family. Her mouth opened to answer but then he was leaning in, looking close and looking back—and the air around him changed. He looked right at it—at the shadow behind him, but he didn’t see her. Noel wished she didn’t see her. If she stopped fading, maybe she would stop seeing. If she finished fading, maybe she’d just be a shadow too. Who would she follow?

He asked if she was going and Noel smiled because whatever she was doing, she was going. Her hand came up, the ends of her sleeves frayed, and the backs of thin fingers pushed at her pale lips to try to control that reaction. She nodded and glanced around the street, toward the window of Cleanse. Wyatt Eaton was in there. She could wait to drop by. Eatons and Laurents didn’t mix well—spring water and mud. “Are you going to buy me something?” she asked curiously, turning toward the sweet shop and remembering walking these exact steps when they were younger, saying those exact words. Everything had been better then—for all of them. But maybe that was how things worked in Helter Close? They retraced their steps over and over until it all soured or until they ran away.

Historically, Laurents had been good at running away from Helter Close. Noel wondered if she tried to run right now—would the wolf chase her? Would she become another one of his ghosts? Her gaze slid over him, not entirely hating the idea of following him forever.
OOC Discussion / Re: Helter Close OOC
« Last post by Jill the Ripper on April 08, 2020, 11:28:40 am »
i feel out of practise LOL, but ah well. :jill:
Modern/Futuristic Roleplay / Re: Helter Close
« Last post by Jill the Ripper on April 08, 2020, 11:28:00 am »
The Carver shop, Cleanse, was white-washed to make it brighter, with big glass windows to let in what light existed in their twilight-world.

Connie, ready for the day in her blue cotton pantsuit and clean linen apron walked past the candles on display - soy wax, organic with essential oils - lighting them as she passed with an airy wave of her fingers.  Hedgewitch magic, and nothing complicated - a gift from a Carver bride, brought into the family long ago. 

Overhead the warm lights lit the shop up, making it inviting, welcoming.   It was important, always, that they made the townspeople feel welcomed - that they could come in and browse, pick up things, sample them.  Ask questions.  All kinds.

Stacking little pottles of a new lip balm she and her mother had made - thick, creamy moisturiser that smelt of garden roses - Connie didn't notice the shadow at her door until it opened, and she turned to smile as the bell above it jingled.

"Welcome - oh." For a moment, she blinked at the guest in surprise, then smiled more widely.  "Wyatt, it's good to see you.  I thought you'd forgotten about us."

Wyatt Eaton, the hero of sixteen-year old Connie's dreams, was... an impression.  As if the charm of the Eaton's power and money weren't enough, he and his brother were both classically good-looking; sandy hair and winsome smiles. Tall and broad-shouldered.  But Wyatt -- Wyatt had always been the kinder of the pair, and it showed in his face, his eyes.

Today he looked tired.  But the nights were getting longer, and the things that demanded their attention - things that lived in the dark just outside the town, waiting - always grew more restless with the darker months.  As the self-appointed leaders of this town, Cornelia wouldn't have been surprised if that Eaton-created pressure was piling on him. 

Sympathetic, she said, "You look like you could use some decent sleep.  Knowing you, though..." She arched an eyebrow, turning back to the counter.  "Here, have some of this." 

On the wall above the counter was a rack of mugs - white, rounded, simple things.  Connie grabbed one, and opening a nearby jar added a tea bag.  There was a kettle on a warming plate, waiting -- it was a favourite way of her mother's, to greet people with a warm cup of tea.  They made the tea themselves; peppermint and chamomile.  It was one of their most popular items, and the least magical item in the store.  Sometimes even just the small ritual of holding a cup and drinking from it was enough.

"Here," She said at last, turning to him to hand him the cup. "It won't fix your problems, but it always helps to pause for a moment."

Her hands lingered on the white ceramic for a moment, and distracted, she looked out the windows to the street, catching a flash of yellow -- Noel.  The glass and the angle almost distorted the view, but Connie caught a dark shadow beside her friend, until it shifted and showed it was corporeal; Vester Medici.  Not completely one of Noel's corpses, then, but living.  Though, she mused, these days he was a far cry from the whelp of a pup that had followed Noel's brother around. 

Dark eyes flickered to Wyatt, and Connie smiled, "Try one of our new hand creams."  She suggested to him, brightly. "They're made with a rose butter Momma makes, she's trying to create a whole line out of it.  You'll never have softer hands."  She went to grab the sample jar, being playful, though she was thinking of her mother's cards that morning.  The Page of Cups, The Devil, The World, The Knight of Swords.  Who was who, today, she wondered.  Who was who.

Modern/Futuristic Roleplay / Re: Helter Close
« Last post by Verse on April 06, 2020, 07:52:36 pm »
A wolf has very well brandished senses. It is a conglomerate of alive nerves, fresh and fanned. But boys are nostalgic. There is sorrow to wallow in, in the past. And that's were he was, walking on. He wasn't aware like wolves ought. And blindness was punished. He didn't hear the greeting, but he felt her body. He was awake then, as he spun around, jerking back reflexively at the collision, around the axis of his own knee.

A carousel of smeared-out Helter. Scent of asphalt, wet with fog, and a Laurent. A splotch of yellow. He liked yellow. He could have caught himself. Frozen the fall and fortified his sinew to halt. But that was too dramatic, wasn't it? A forest maneuver in the heart of town. So he let that knee touch the curb. He looked up and there was another part of that family that helped him become what he'd always wanted. His hallelujah in blood. Usually they made him angry, but Noel made him sad. Laurent magic was hurting her, too.

It was shameful, but he found it refreshing. A kindred but in the sense that he could pity her. It made him so happy he almost cried. "Morning Noel." he said with yellow shrapnel still on his front teeth as he stood up. He brushed her coat once, where he'd touched it, as though he was made of dust but somehow his palm was clean. Her eyes were a fitting color. "How's the family?" It was all they were, right? The blood. The letters after their first names.

He thought he saw something in the gray in her face, and he turned around. Nothing. When he whipped his head back there was some living anger there, in the shadows under his cheekbones, some life in the carcass. Noel was quiet compared to her brother, his friend, but she was loud, too. When they were children he had bumped into her a lot. It had made Bellamy furious with the Medici pup, but what could he do, back then? He didn't have the reflexes he ought. He couldn't fight monsters in the woods better than the townsfolk that didn't have ancient names.

And now, when he had all the fangs and the power and sins that come with them, he still couldn't help but crash right into her, and have her scatter all his properties all over the square, with its new cobblestone and old cement. His tongue touched his rightmost upper fang. It was gone. Another thing they used to do was get candy at Vera's. He always bought her hard ones because they had the pretties colors, and girls like that. Like it more than being bumped into the ground of the tall grass, at least. He threw his head toward the store window with the Victorian theme. Pretty, really. Full of yellow, too.

"Going?" he asked. Really, it was an apology.

Bellamy had said once she didn't like the hard candy. But she usually went with them in there, anyway.
OOC Discussion / Re: Helter Close OOC
« Last post by Ara on April 06, 2020, 12:35:25 pm »

Henry Eaton is one of the heads of the Eaton family. Sixty-one. Salt and pepper hair.

Vivian Eaton. Fifty-eight. Mayor of Helter Close.

Claudette Eaton. Twenty-seven. Chairperson of Helter Close town council and bookkeeper for the Eaton Lumber Company. Pale blond, slender, with green eyes.

Wyatt Eaton. Thirty. Identical twin of Caleb Eaton. Manager at the Eaton Lumber Company. Sandy blonde hair and dark blue eyes.

Caleb Eaton. Thirty. Identical twin of Wyatt Eaton. Handles marketing for the family business. Married and has two kids.
OOC Discussion / Re: Helter Close OOC
« Last post by Jill the Ripper on April 06, 2020, 12:31:44 pm »
Ah, the Eatons are so miserable, I love them, LOL.
OOC Discussion / Re: Helter Close OOC
« Last post by Ara on April 06, 2020, 12:00:34 pm »
Okay! So we're doing the "Caleb Eaton is possessed" plot on the side and the longer he is in Helter Close and getting stronger, the more weird shit is going to happen and creepy things will be coming in closer than usual. And depending on how this goes, we could make the Eatons turn on the other families when they figure out what's going on.

I'm going to toss up more character info bits because I just made a bunch of random Eatons...
Modern/Futuristic Roleplay / Re: Helter Close
« Last post by Ara on April 06, 2020, 11:54:09 am »
Wyatt’s jaw ticked, the way it did when he was trying not to look angry—not to grind his teeth or wrinkle his nose or narrow his dark eyes.

He was tired beyond belief. Just about everyone over twenty in the Eaton house was. They were weighed by a secret. Most Eaton secrets were benign, ancient things kept for the joy of keeping. Wyatt often thought of his family a legacy of hoarders. No one noticed, because what they horded was valuable and that made it acceptable. They horded wealthy, treasures, antiques, memories, histories, truths and lies. They kept their dead in the mausoleums out back, white structures of marble in the dark green of the woods, sealed away from anything that might reach out from the dark for their bones. They kept every book, every journal, every scrap of paper scribbled on by an Eaton logged away in the library. The halls draped in the portraits of their relatives. Nothing and no one escaped their family.

But this new secret, it was heavy in a way few others still were. It weighed them down every day, leaving circles to be covered up under their eyes and a tense quiet in the manor house.

“Let him go,” Wyatt said quietly, because no one else would. No one else had mentioned the idea since that first night, when they found Caleb in the woods—not the woods of this world, but the woods of another—and brought him home.

His father glared at him from across the breakfast table. The kids had all left to pile into the cars for school, leaving only a handful of them still at the table.

“Wyatt,” his aunt tried to soothe, setting her napkin beside her plate.

He stared at his father, an older version of himself and his brother. The old man had been so pleased to have two mirrors of himself. Even more so when they grew and he could pit them against one another—making them stronger in that endless competition. It was over now. Wyatt had won…and lost. “You know the rules—”

Henry rose to his feet. The table flinched, everyone but Wyatt looking away with chins high as though they could pretend to be elsewhere—too good for this dark conversation. “We make the rules,” he snapped.

Vivian wrinkled her nose but her face was turned away from her brother, so Henry may not have noticed. But Wyatt did. Eatons were prideful and bold, but they were not stupid and words like that were asking for trouble.

“You think we can not save him? We made this town. We protect it in a forest of madness and monsters. We made wolves into men. We push demons back into the dark. We have averted the apocalypse countless times,” Henry ground out each word.

Wyatt stared back at him, waiting until he was done before replying, “But we did not do any of those things alone.”

Henry stared, face as still as stone.

“Perhaps we could ask the mud witches to resurrect his soul?” Claudette suggested, his cousin taking another sip of her coffee before putting it down into the saucer with a final clank. She rose to her feet, buttoning her jacket. “Or kill the monster in him.”

Henry shifted his onyx gaze on the pale haired woman. “Say it again, little girl, and I’ll have your tongue.”

The air in the room thinned and not even Wyatt could guess who had done it. His father? Claudette? Her mother Vivian? Or one of the other cousins? The human relations cringed in their seats, chins down while the magic blooded pushed their chins high.

Claudette stared back at his father, her lacquered black nails clicking against the metal buttons of her jacket, hugging her waist and matching her slacks. “Try,” she urged.

Vivian rolled her eyes and stood. “Well, that’s enough of that. I have a meeting with the town committee to finalize the plans for the Autumn Festival. Which means, Claud has a meeting with me.” Vivian said, Claudette being the chairperson for the committee. His aunt rounded the table as she spoke, pausing beside Henry to place a hand on her brother’s shoulder. “We will recover your son and these times will be but a moment of darkness.”

Henry eased back, sinking into his seat. He was just as tired as the rest of them, but with more heartache.

Wyatt was relieved when his aunt asked him to drive her into town. It wasn’t really a request. Almost nothing an Eaton asked ever was.

Claudette took her own car, the white Ferrari 458. It was a stupid car to own in a small town, with only the road in and out of town other than dirt paths to the lumber yard. But Claud had wanted it and, like a true Eaton, she got what she wanted. Sometimes she drove it down the highway, as though she might leave the woods and her life behind. She drove it as fast as it could go, breaking before the edge of the trees and turning back. Wyatt wouldn’t be surprised if she just didn’t come back one day.

He drove one of the trucks into Helter proper, his aunt sitting beside him. They both watched Claudette’s white car vanish ahead of them.

“He’s not wrong,” Vivian spoke first. “We have done extraordinary things. Why not this?”

“Because we have never been able to do this. Because you taught us not to try,” he continued. Because if it had been me, he would have put me in the mausoleum without a fuss, he thought. “If we don’t bury him, we won’t be able to keep it a secret. The vipers deal in fortune telling. The wolves will know as soon as they see him. And the mud witches… Jesus, if we’re lucky they’re too distracted by their dying girl to notice.”

His aunt laughed shortly. “You’ve been playing Caleb too much. You worry like him now,” she said, the smile dying on her lips as the words escaped. It was easy to pretend he wasn’t dead yet, when they kept playing this game. Wyatt and Caleb were identical twins. So, Wyatt had played his brother for the investor video calls and at the lumber yard a handful of times since he first went missing—all to keep up appearances. “We’ll deal with things as they come up. Have hope, boy. We win often enough to bet on ourselves.”

Wyatt huffed and held his tongue rather than explain odds to her. He parked along the main street.

She leveled him with a serious stare. “You want to end this nightmare?” She was in her late fifties but no one would guess at her being any older than forty-nine. She had his father’s eyes, dark and cold at their depths. “Save your brother.” She held his gaze a second longer before looking away, waiting for him to get out of the truck and walk around it, opening her door.

They both wore different faces as soon as they were out of the car, soft expressions with easy smiles—like the whole world was a gentle place because they had made it so.

“Don’t go far,” Vivian Eaton said before walking up the steps of the townhall building.

“As you wish, madam Mayor,” Wyatt replied under his breath, shoving his hands into his jacket pockets and crossing the street. He spotted a wolf nearby. Vester. He had bloomed late—after his girlfriend skipped town on him. Wyatt tipped his head at the man before ducking into the Carver shop, hoping to catch Connie and not her mother. He didn’t imagine his family would like him playing too close to the fortune readers right now—but maybe that was exactly what they needed? Save his brother. That was all he had to do. What no one had ever done before. And yes, they had done impossible things in Helter Close before—but never alone.


Noel never walked hurriedly and the farther she got from her family property, the less attached she became to her surroundings. It was easy to know when someone came onto the property, to reach out in her mind and know who they were, but once she was elsewhere, she was just another person lost in the fog. She wondered if that was why the Aunties had stopped leaving home. It was unnerving to be lost.

Her fingers twisted in her hair, tying a tight, slender braid inside the waves and tangles. Her gray eyes slid over the morning market absently and for the most part no one noticed her. She could blame it on the fog or on their focus setting up, but it had never been common for townsfolk not to take notice of Sentinel Families. No. It wasn’t their fault. Maybe she had finally faded? Was that what it meant? Would she fade away?

She stopped when she inhaled the tangled scent of sugar and blood. She was at the edge of the market and could see the shopfronts on the main street ahead. Her pale nails slid out of her hair, hand dropping to her side when she turned to look at the Medici. Tears stung her eyes and she tried not to look at the shadow of a woman behind him—what was left of her anyway. Death whispered in her ear and it made her head hurt. Why did it whisper at her? She couldn’t understand those backwards words anyway.

“Morning,” she said, not yet sure if it was good or if they were on speaking terms. He hadn’t been to the Laurent house since the night it happened. No one talked about it. But Bellamy hadn’t left the property since. He played it off easily to the others, but Noel knew he was guarding the Aunties. Was the Medici a danger to them now? They had liked him so much before. They would never have done it for him otherwise—and they may not have done it if they had known it would work so well.
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